Wednesday, December 31, 2014

HAPPY HAPPY NEW YEAR !


What's your 2015 Resolution?
Do you make them?
Find out tomorrow about The Crew.

BUT FOR NOW . . .

Have a very fun & safe New Year's Eve.

Alexa, Clover, Donnell, 
E.E., Heather, Jan, 
Jill, Kathleen, Lara, 
Lizbeth, Maureen, Vicki 
& Angi

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

SOMEWHERE, TEXAS

TEXAS SUNRISE
Somewhere TX Box Set 1
Chick Tales, LLC

There are five full length, never before released novels, in our first Somewhere TX box set. All of the books are contemporary, cowboy themed and set in the fictional town of Somewhere TX. And the first box set is now on sale for only 99 cents!

The first story in the box set is mine, titled, The Cowboy Rock Star. Here’s the blurb and excerpt from my latest novel.



Everyone loves a rock star 

What country legend Brent Kane needs is a good old fashioned hook-up. With pressure to write his next album mounting and the sales from his latest album teetering, Brent needs to find his muse –hot sex with no commitment—fast. So when Brent holes up at his best friend’s ranch in Somewhere Texas to write his next single the last thing he expected was to find his muse in the form of his best friend’s little sister. 

DJ Diaz, the nonsense part owner of the Double D Ranch, is not at all affected by Brent’s good looks and play boy charm. She’s fallen once before and learned firsthand the heartache of loving a rock star. But spending time with the man who let her down ten years ago shows her that something’s missing from her life—fun. But will DJ be able to keep her heart from becoming involved in this “just for fun” relationship? And more importantly, will Brent? 

Here’s a little of it…

“You're leaving?” He meant for that to come out less astonished then it sounded, but he really was surprised. “You’re upset because I guessed the wrong drink? Give me another shot, please.” He added his best smile to seal the deal. “You’re a regular old beer gal. I think girls who drink beer are sexy.”
She put both her arms on the table and rested her chin in her hands. “Wait, are you really trying to pick me up?”
He got closer, covering half the distance between them while his heart rate kicked up to the next level. This was what he loved. He never felt more alive than when he was chasing his muse. “And are you really trying to play hard to get?”
Her face changed from disbelief to pure astonishment. “Oh, I'm playing, alright, and I don't think I've ever enjoyed myself so much. So let me ask you.”
She leaned in real close. Close enough that if Brent wanted to, he could kiss her. Was that what she wanted? He let his gaze fall to her mouth—damn, she had beautiful lips. She must have seen him staring, because she chose just that moment to lick them.
Easy boy. “Ask away, Sugar. To you, I'm an open book.”
There was a mischievous twinkle in her eyes that was right up Brent’s alley. How did she know he loved mischievous? “Does that ‘let-me-guess-your-drink’ line ever work?”
All the time.
“I wouldn't know. You're the first I ever wanted to ask,” his voice the low, sexy rumble that he’d perfected when he sang his love songs.
“Wow, doesn't it bother your conscience to lie that easily?” Her tone sweet, with the airiness of cotton candy, but without the stomachache afterwards.
“I'd never lie to you, Sugar.”
“Somehow, I don't believe that.” The girl was quick, he’d give her that. It was taking everything he had to keep one step ahead of her.
“Believe this.” He took her hand and brought her ring finger up to his mouth and kissed it. “I see you don't have a ring. Can I assume you're unattached?”
She didn't pull away. He took that as a yes.
“And neither am I. What a wonderful coincidence, don't you think?”
She shook her head, her mouth slightly parted. “I'm speechless.”
“Here then, let me help.” He took her hand and flipped it palm up. Then took out the pen he kept around just for this reason. He carefully wrote his full name and number down.
She stared at the digits.
“Recognize the name?” he asked. This was his favorite part.
“Brent Kane. Should I?” He didn’t quite trust the sincerity in her voice, but he was nothing if not reckless.
“Ever hear of the songs, Girl, I Love You or It's Been A Long Time?”
She nodded, her face giving nothing away.
“Those are my songs.”
Wait for it.
“Oh.” Her hand came up to her chest.
Here it comes.
“Oh,” the word floated out of her mouth with an unseen exclamation point rising up from behind. “So you’re that country singer?”
He did that one sided smile that made his dimple show. “I prefer rock star, but yes, ma’am, I am.”
She pulled her hand away to examine the numbers more closely. “So this here’s a rock star's phone number on my hand? I have the chance to be a booty call for a living, breathing celebrity?”
Well, those wouldn't be the terms he would use, but women seemed more understanding of men these days. He touched the brim of his hat. “I'm here for a whole week.”
Her smile grew wide and her eyes narrowed dangerously as she lifted her hand, spit in it, and wiped her palm on his shirt sleeve. Then she got up from the table and walked away.
Brent gaped as she sashayed away from his booth and out of his life.
“Damn,” Derrek slapped his hand on the table. “I've never seen anything quite like that before.”
Neither had Brent. “I know.”
“Oh, bro,” Derrek said. “That girl just spit in her own hand to wipe your number off.”
Brent was at a total loss. He couldn't remember the last time a woman turned him down. “I know. I think I'm in love.”
KC KLEIN has lived most of her life with her head in the clouds and her nose buried in a book. She did stop reading long enough to make a home with a real life hero, for over twenty years. A mother of two girls, she spends her time slaying dragons, saving princesses, and championing the belief in the happily-ever-after. An award winning novelist, KC Klein is celebrating her latest release in the Somewhere TX series, The Cowboy Rock Star. KC loves to hear from readers and can be found desperately pounding away on her laptop in yoga pants and leopard slippers or more conveniently at www.kckleinbooks.com. To keep up with exciting book news and special promotions please sign up for her newsletter. 

ANGI: How often to you get lost in a story?
KC: More often than my family would like. If a few days have gone by without me “getting lost in a story” aka writing, I start to feel anxious and out of sorts. I start complaining to my husband and worrying in my sleep.

ANGI: What’s the first book you remember reading? 
KC: Judy Blume’s Super Fudge

ANGI: Can you tell us about a real-life hero you’ve met?
KC: As cheesy as it sounds, my husband. He’s so understanding about my writing (in the beginning that wasn’t the case) but now he takes the kids, even goes out of town with them so that I can have a writer’s weekend. He’s been my hero for almost 20 years.

ANGI: What do you like about the hero of your book?
KC: I like that they are honorable, but also very real. I’ve been told that I write the male POV very well and for me it’s fun to get inside the mind of a sexy cowboy, down on his luck space captain, or even war-hardened soldier. I grew up with two brothers and am the only girl, so writing men comes easy to me.

ANGI: Where do you read and how often?
KC: I usually read in the bathtub with a glass of wine. I don’t get to read as often as I used to, but I still try to make time for it. Reading is what feeds the soul of a writer. I find that I need to read outside of my genre and new-to-me authors in order to keep my creative juices flowing.

ANGI: What was the first story you remember writing?
KC: It was a historical romance. I never finished it. Barely remember what it was about, but it was my first attempt at fiction. My stories always have been at the heart, romances. That’s what I was born to write.

ANGI: What’s your favorite movie of all time?
KC: I love The Last of the Mohicans. The soundtrack is still my all-time favorite.

ANGI: What's your most favorite thing to do in your state?
KC: I live in AZ. So the best thing to do is not having to shovel snow.

ANGI: What is your biggest vice?
KC: Facebook

ANGI: How is it working with hot guys and sexy women all day?
KC: Awesome! Every time I write about falling in love, I feel like I’m falling in love. It’s great to experience that over and over again. I feel like I have the best of what life can offer. If I want adventure, drama, action, or romance it’s all at the tips of my fingers.

ANGI’S GOTTA ASK: Hey KC, since it’s almost New Year’s Eve…  What is the BEST New Year’s Eve moment you have!
KC’s GOTTA ANSWER: I’ve spent most of my New Year’s Eves staying at home writing. Most of the time I fall asleep before midnight and then am shocked when I get woken up by firecrackers and banging pots. J

FIND KC KLEIN:
Contact  Website    Facebook    Twitter   @kckleinbooks
Goodreads   Pintrest     Previous GLIAS interviews

UP NEXT for KC:
The Space Captain’s Courtesan

PREVIOUS RELEASES by KC:
TEXAS WIDE OPEN
I wanted to let everyone know that the first book in my Texas Fever series is now on sale for a limited time for only $1.99 on all major platforms.

"A tortured hero, a love that defies distance and time...this is a book you won't soon forget." -Cat Johnson

Katie Harris loved growing up on a ranch. She had her horse, the beautiful Texas prairie, and Cole Logan, the cowboy next door. But there are a lot of secrets hidden under a Texas sky...

Katie always knew she'd marry Cole one day--until he broke her dreams and her heart. But now that Katie's father is sick, she's back home, older, wiser and nowhere near the love-sick fool she once was.

Cole knows Katie doesn't want anything to do with him. But after so many years, he can't pretend she's no more than a neighbor. Holding his ground was hard enough when she was seventeen. Now that she's her own woman, Cole's heart doesn't stand a chance...

"Passionate, gritty and fast paced...with a hot blooded, honorable hero to make every woman's knees go weak."--Diane Whiteside

READ a little . . .
Katie watched as Cole slowly turned, and at the sight of his bare chest, smooth and ripped with muscle, she locked her knees to keep upright. Instead of his inviting smile, there was a hardness she rarely saw that contrasted with the desire in his eyes.

Cole stood and stared. The silence between them crackled as if a whole conversation could be said without words.

Her breathing quickened as her nipples contracted into small, tight buds, sensitive to the brush of the cotton across them. She refused to hide her body’s reaction even as a flush of heat rushed to her cheeks. She’d been waiting all of her life for this moment. She was tired of hiding. She was ready. Unashamed, she gazed in his eyes and let the wealth of her feelings pour into her face.

Cole was no coward—he returned stare for stare—but she could see his jaw flex and knew he was pissed. She’d pushed him hard, but this was where the women separated themselves from the girls.

“I’m not a child any longer.” She took a step closer.

“And I told you, if you wear that shirt again, I’ll burn it,” he growled.

But Cole would have to do more than display a little anger to scare her. Before she lost courage, Katie crossed her arms and pulled.

She threw her shirt in his face, along with her challenge. “Go ahead and do it.”

KC is giving away one digital copy of Texas Sunrise! Just leave a comment to be 

KC is giving away one digital copy of Texas Sunrise! Just leave a comment to be eligible. Winner drawn on Jan 1st.

Note: COMMENTERS are encouraged to leave a contact email address to speed the prize notification process. Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America addresses only unless specifically mentioned in the post. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants. Winners of drawings are responsible for checking this site in a timely manner. If prizes are not claimed in a timely manner, the author may not have a prize available. Get Lost In A Story cannot be responsible for an author's failure to mail the listed prize. GLIAS does not automatically pass email addresses to guest authors unless the commenter publicly posts their email address.

Don’t miss Angi’s latest release
THE SHERIFF

THE GLIAS CREW is back on FRIDAY
DO YOU RESOLUTE?
Get Lost on Goodreads, Facebook
or @GetLostInAStory  #GetLostStories


KC WANTS TO KNOW: What do you most want to hear from your favorite author about on Facebook? 

Monday, December 29, 2014

Get Lost in a Story welcomes Lora Lee


Born in a small Texas Hill Country town, Lora Lee discovered the magic of reading at an early age and began inventing stories before she could write down the words. Her preacher daddy, as well as her mama, encouraged her love of books by making certain she always had a library card each time they moved to a new town. Lora Lee and her husband live in West Michigan where they enjoy being near their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Bringing in the Thieves is the first book in Lora Lee’s Joyful Noise Mysteries series. Set in the colorful world of choirs, glee clubs and the gentle shenanigans of a close-knit church community, the series stars single mom, Frankie Lou McMasters—a preacher’s daughter who fell from grace—and her devoted band of misfit teenage singers. Add a wrongly-convicted ex-con with a golden voice, a baptism gone wrong and suddenly Frankie Lou finds herself vocalizing deep in the heart of murder.

 Get Lost in a Story Readers, I'm pleased to introduce to you, Lora Lee!


DONNELL:  Lora, welcome!  This sounds like my kind of read.  Good people wronged and who have experienced plenty of conflict.  So I just gotta know.  Can you sing?  What qualifies you to write a choir/glee club series?

LORA:  Thanks so much for having me, Donnell. I’m excited and a little anxious about my first venture into the cozy mystery genre. Very different from writing straight romance.  About singing – from high school choir and church choir, I’ve always loved music and singing.  Before I married, our church choir was privileged to sing with the choir led by George Beverly Shea at a service led by the Rev. Billy Graham. That was an exciting experience.  As years have passed, my voice has lost its quality, but I still love to listen to all kinds of music.

DONNELL:  Without giving too much away, can you tell us in what way Frankie Lou falls from grace?  How much is she like Lora Lee, and in what ways is she different?

LORA:  Frankie Lou had some of the same social restrictions as I had growing up. Being a preacher’s kid labeled her as different to many of her peers in school. Frankie Lou made some bad choices and ran off with town bad boy ‘cause her daddy held the shotgun. Lora Lee didn’t make that mistake although she did move a long way from her Texas hometown when she married. No shotguns involved, though.

DONNELL:  It’s well known I’m a hopeless romantic, so will Frankie Lou have a love interest in the series?

LORA: Oh, she sure will, but that part of the story barely gets off the ground in the first book. She’s still working on putting some shine on her personal halo and that doesn’t come easy.

DONNELL:  Would you call this a cozy, mystery or . . . .?

LORA:  I’d definitely call it cozy. There is a body and a murder to solve, but the book has some quirky characters and humorous moments. I hope readers find it a fun read.

DONNELL:  I love research.  I learn the most interesting things.  What’s the most interesting thing you’ve learned doing research?

LORA:  I love research, too, Donnell. Most interesting research experience I’ve had was the ten-week citizens’ police academy course I took. Those classes gave me an up-close-and-personal look at police procedures, both inside the headquarters and on the streets. The overnight ride-along held a few surprises, too, like the arrest and transport of a drunk driver to jail.  And the high-speed ride through the city with lights flashing and sirens screaming ramped up my heartbeat, for sure. Oh, and did I mention my granddaddy was City Marshal back in the fifties in the little town where I grew up. Things have changed a lot since then.

DONNELL:  Name the most interesting or unusual thing you have in your closet?

LORA:  My closet, huh? Well, right now there are some hidden Christmas gifts for the family. Not so unusual, I suppose, at this time of year. Some cowboy boots I don’t wear since I don’t ride anymore.  Nothing very interesting, I’m afraid.

LORA, NOW IT’S YOUR TURN.  Thank you again, Donnell, for having me on Get Lost in a Story.  It’s been fun and you’ve asked some great questions. Now I’d like to ask the readers one.  Do you read many cozy mysteries and if so, what do you look for when you shop for one?  Be sure and leave your email address when you comment if you want to be included in the drawing for an ebook of Bringing in the Thieves.



Thursday, December 25, 2014

CHRISTMAS WISHES

. . . FOR ALL OUR READERS


E.E. BURKE

This year I've been blessed with additions to our family, friends worth more than all the gold in the world, a new mentor whose guidance and encouragement kept me going, a team of companions and peers without equal and the best readers in the world. Wishes do come true.


May your Christmas be filled with love, light and magic, and may the New Year bring you unexpected blessings.









VICKI BATMAN


My Christmas Wish is 
for good health for all. 

For good times with 
family and friends.

For peace 
throughout the world. 






JILLIAN STONE

None of the heroes or heroines I write are fearless; it's how they overcome their fears that interests me…

Peace, Love, Joy.






LIZBETH SELVIG
To me Christmas is all about, well, CHRISTMAS! 
While you’re shopping for all our wonderful books (!) I hope you remember the reason we’re celebrating. I send my love to all our GLIAS family and wish you a very happy Christmas and a safe, joyous start to 2015.




ALEXA BOURNE


I wish everyone a Happy Christmas. 
Have a safe & Happy New Year! 

May we all experience joy, happiness & successes (those that really count) in 2015!









DONNELL ANN BELL
Wishing Get Lost in a Story readers a wonderful holiday, full of escapism, romance and love.  
And when you close the book, I wish it for you in real life, too!  Joy! 


LARA LACOMBE

Wishing you 
a happy 
and safe 
holiday season!

Thanks for reading!  See you next year :)









CLOVER AUTREY

To one and all, my Christmas wish is that everyone realizes how important, how unique, and how loved they truly are. 












MAUREEN McGOWAN

Simply wishing you a very merry Christmas.














HEATHER SNOW

May your Christmas be filled with joy and laughter.












KATHLEEN BALDWIN



Holiday joy to you all.








JAN SCHLIESMAN
Make a memory worth remembering and be the change you want to see in the world.

Love yourself enough to walk away from anything that makes you doubt the light in your heart.






ANGI MORGAN


Now that all of the Christmas rush is through ... 


Take a minute to enjoy a jingle or two.

Merry Christmas everyone.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

E.E. Burke's Best of the West Holiday Hoopla!

What's more fun than getting a stocking full of books? Winning FREE books for the holidays from your favorite authors! 

Today, I'm hosting a Holiday Hoopla with some of the wonderful authors I've featured this past year in my Best of the West series of interviews. 

They’ll give us a peek at what they've got planned for 2015 and share some favorite memories. Plus, they're showering us with gifts!  

I can't think of a better way to celebrate, can you? Grab a hot chocolate, throw a log on the fire and let's get started with:

KAKI WARNER
Hi, Elisabeth! I’m very excited to join you for your Christmas bash. Thanks for inviting me. 

Glad you could make it! Can you share with us the best thing that happened over the past year, or your best Christmas gift?

My visit to Scotland. It was the culmination of a lifelong dream, and far exceeded my expectations. It’s a wonderful country, stunningly beautiful, steeped in history—both uplifting and tragic—and proudly inhabited by the friendliest people I’ve ever come across. They certainly know how to welcome “back” all the descendants of their countrymen-and-women who were forced by wars and clearances and economic oppression to seek prosperity elsewhere. I understand what it means to “Come home to Scotland”. It also left me with a folder full of ideas for a Scottish-set contemporary romance. We’ll see.

Best Christmas gift would be when I got my first horse. Sadly, I was in college at the time, and I think my parents finally relented because they thought it would take my mind off the exciting young man I wouldn’t shut up about. It didn’t. And now 48 years later, he’s still pretty exciting. I had to trade him in (the horse) when we married, but I kept the saddle, of course. He (my husband) still won’t wear it, though. Crab.

What project are you working on for the coming year?

I am very excited (and a little sad) about this final book in the Heartbreak Creek saga, Thomas and Pru’s story. It’s titled Home by Morning and will be released July 7th.  This mismatched couple began as secondary characters in the first Heartbreak Creek book, and have since become the thread that weaves through all six books in the Runaway Brides and Heroes of Heartbreak Creek trilogies. I have never had characters so capture the imaginations of my readers. With each release throughout the two trilogies, I have gotten letter after letter asking when I would write Thomas and Pru’s story. It was a difficult book to write, and a difficult series to end, and I hope it was worth the wait


Here's a sneak peek:

Thomas Redstone—a former Cheyenne warrior seeking new purpose by following the ways of his white grandfather—is returning to Heartbreak Creek, Colorado when he decides to give the woman he loves one last chance to accept him into her life.

Prudence Lincoln’s beauty and education have brought her little joy. Envied by blacks for the advantages she’s had, and reviled by whites for her black blood, she’s proving herself by helping ex-slaves prepare for newfound freedom. Thomas has no place in her future, no matter how much she loves him.

He’s suffered only hardship. She was raised in privilege. Their only common ground is the spark between them that won’t die. Yet even as evil forces pull them apart again and their differences threaten to separate them forever, a special child teaches them that courage is a choice, happiness is a gift, and love will overcome any obstacle in their way.

Quote from Home by Morning:

“When I first saw you in Declan Brodie’s wagon, with your shy smile and great, wounded eyes, I knew I would love you, Prudence Lincoln. And later, when I held you in the sacred pool, and spirits trailed ribbons of light across the moonless sky, I knew I would lose you. I accept that. But know this, Eho’nehevehohtse.” Unable to keep from touching her, he framed her face with his hands. It was a moment before he could speak again. “Through all the days I have left…until the last sunset unfurls across the sky and the owl calls my name into the night…I will never forget you.”

I’m also working on a Texas historical that covers a twenty-year span, following a determined heroine from terrible loss, to betrayal, to revenge and ultimately redemption in the arms of the man who has pursued her for all those years.

That sounds like a wonderful way to wrap up your series and start something new. Can't wait until July! Thanks for joining us, and have a Merry Christmas on your mountaintop home.



UP NEXT…BECKY LOWER

Hi, E.E., thank you for inviting me to your Holiday Hoopla.

Glad you could join us. Can you share your best Christmas gift?

I am giving myself an early gift this year in a hip replacement. I want to hike again, something I haven't been able to do for a couple years. I hope by Christmas to be dancing at the foot of the Christmas tree.


What are you working on for the coming year? 

I just received a contract for my novella about the courtship of the parents of my fictitious Fitzpatrick family. It will be released this coming summer. And the 8th book in the series, The Widow's Redemption, will be out in the fall of 2015. I've also started a contemporary series and am working on book 2 right now.

Book 7 in the Cotillion Ball Series--Expressly Yours, Samantha--will be released March 2015. I'm excited about it, since it focuses on the Pony Express. It took a lot of research to get my facts straight, and I learned much more about this little slice of history than I ever thought possible.

Here's the blurb:

    Samantha Hughes needs to get away from her wicked uncle, and, following her aunt’s death, she has one day to escape. A sign in the post office offers an avenue out. She can cut her hair, pose as a man, and become Sam Hughes, a Pony Express rider.
    Valerian Fitzpatrick has defied his parents and stayed in St. Louis for the past year. He doesn't want the weight of responsibility his brothers have in the family business. All he wants to do is ride horses, and, fortunately, the Pony Express is starting up and looking for wiry young fellows.
    When Sam Hughes helps Valerian control a runaway horse, Joseph, Valerian’s brother-in-law, tells him their meeting was destiny. Over the weeks and months that follow, Sam and Val work side by side on the exciting Pony Express. Val assumes Sam is on the run from the law, and helps shield his buddy from the Pinkerton agents. He thinks this must be the destiny Joseph talked about. Although Samantha harbors feelings for Val, he has no idea she’s a woman. Until she suffers a stray gunshot wound and he has to undress her to staunch the wound.
    Friendship turns into attraction and maybe even love. When her uncle tracks her down, she is forced to run yet again. She realizes the danger she’s put Valerian into, having him try to shield her from her uncle, and leaves him behind with a note to not track her down.
    Will he be able to find her, or is he relieved to not have any responsibility again?

We’ll look forward to following your series out West. Thanks for being here today and here’s to you dancing beneath the tree on Christmas morning.


NOW, SYLVIA MCDANIEL

Hi, Elisabeth, thanks for the invite. This year we have a new addition to our home. A puppy! 

That guarantees you'll be busy! Can you share with us the best thing that happened over the past year, or your best Christmas present?

Best Christmas present? I can’t remember…probably a birthstone ring that my parents bought me. It broke the first week – yeah it wasn’t real good quality, so we took it back to the jewelry store and I picked out the one I wanted. It was more expensive and my mother kept telling me it’s too expensive. It was forty dollars, but this was 1969 and money was tight. I insisted and they bought the ring. I still have it today and I LOVE it. It’s one of my favorites. Now the ring is probably worth a couple of hundred dollars – not real fine jewelry, but I still love it.

What are you working on for the coming year? 

The third book in my series, Lipstick and Lead, will come out in February. Here's a sneak peek from Dangerous.

    Annabelle McKenzie strode down the wooden sidewalk on her way to the bank. As the family bookkeeper for their bounty hunting business, Lipstick and Lead, it was her responsibility to make certain the bank loan was paid, the farm continued to operate, and supplies were bought, while her sisters had all the fun chasing bad guys and bringing them to justice. Her sisters earned the money, and Annabelle made certain they had a home to return to.
    After their father died, they’d learned his profession out of desperation and become bounty hunters. The job paid better than being a waitress or a seamstress or even a housekeeper. And you only had to answer to the men captured and brought to justice.
Not the randy hands of the owner of a business or his employees.
    Living on a farm alone, taking care of cattle and chickens and gardening, was enough to make any person question her sanity. In the last year, Annabelle had begun to regret agreeing to take care of their land, while her sisters did the hunting.
    She longed for adventure, excitement, danger. Something more challenging than shoveling manure. Only, her sisters disagreed. Meg and Ruby wanted her to remain on the farm.
    Hogwash! It was someone else’s turn to babysit the chickens, harvest the garden, and chase the stray cows.
    This morning, she’d stopped at the sheriff’s office and picked up the latest wanted posters. Tonight, when she got home, she was going to make her sisters understand she needed to get away from the braying of cattle and the collecting of eggs.
    Slap her silly, but she was done!
    Deep in thought about how she would explain to them she craved adventure and longed for excitement, she rounded the corner to enter the bank and slammed into the hard chest muscles of a large dark-haired man. The scent of soap and campfire smoke spiraled through her straight to her center. This was a manly man and Lord knew, they were scarce in Zenith, Texas. Where had he come from?
    His hat was pulled low over his face, and he grabbed her by the arms, halting her progress. Her head fit just below his chin. She looked up at his strong, rugged jaw, and serious face.
    Long black lashes blinked over emerald eyes as he gripped her arms. “Slow down,” he said in a deep husky drawl. He kept his head down, barely looking at her. “There’s still plenty of cash left in the bank.”
    What a condescending, egotistical, handsome renegade. Not an “I’m sorry” or “Excuse me”, but rather a crass remark about the money in the bank. “Maybe you should watch where you’re going.”
    She tilted her head and stared into those dark forest eyes. There was something about him that seemed familiar, yet she couldn’t place him. She’d seen his face. She stared up at him.         “You’re tall enough you should be able to see a woman coming.”
    He nodded, and she stared at the way his shirt fit his strong shoulders and muscled arms. And his lips were full and tempting, made for kissing.
    “You’re right, ma’am. I should see a small package like you, barreling around a blind corner. Maybe I need to replace my spectacles with a pair that can see through walls,” he said, releasing her arms.
    “Maybe you do,” she said, knowing the oversized giant was smarting off to her. He wasn’t wearing spectacles. Where had she seen him before? “What’s your name?”
    A sly smile turned up the corners of his full, luscious lips. “Why? You plan on having me arrested for running into you?”
    The man had an ornery mouth, and she was just the woman to give it right back.
“Maybe,” she said. “I know the sheriff well. It would serve you right for being belligerent and disrespectful.”
    He smiled a wickedly sly grin that sent tingles through her. “You have a really nice day.”
His voice was dripping with sweet sarcasm that made her feel like she’d eaten too many cookies. Tipping his black hat at her, he sauntered out the door.
    Like a kick from a bull, it hit her.
    He was on one of the wanted posters she had out in her saddlebags.

Sounds like fireworks are in store for those two. You'll have to come back in February and tell us more about them. Thanks for stopping by, and may your New Year be filled with puppy love.


ON TO HAWAII AND JILL MARIE LANDIS

Aloha, Elisabeth. Thank you for hosting us this season. I am grateful for everything in my life so it's hard to choose just one "best." Everyday I wake up is the BEST day. 

As far as best Christmas present, well, I've had so many wonderful Christmases it's hard to say, but the best gift ever was the 57 convertible Ford Fairlane 500 that my dad and mom surprised me with on my 16th Birthday, which is in November, so that's close, right?


That's an awesome birthday-almost-Christmas present. I'd say living on Kauai is pretty spectacular, too, as well as being great inspiration. Don't you have a new book coming out next year?

I'm working on my 2015 release, the fifth book in the Tiki Goddess Mysteries entitled...get ready for it.... Hawaii Five Uh-Oh! The madcap, mystery solving Hula Maidens outdo themselves once again while cavorting around the North Shore of Kauai, risking life, limb, and their hectic social obligations as they focus on trying to catch a ring of high end art thieves and still have time for cocktails and shaking those grass skirts.

But since this is a Christmas celebration, we must have presents. I'll be giving away three ebooks from my re-issued classic romances: Sunflower, After All, and Daydreamer.

Jill Marie, thank you for sharing your many gifts with us this year and we'll look forward to chatting with you about your new book next year. Mele Kalikimaka.




NEXT, REBECCA HAGAN LEE

Hi E.E., thanks for the opportunity to give my GLIAS friends a sneak peek of what I'm working on for 2015. I hope you have a wonderful holiday season. Happy Thanksgiving! Merry Christmas! Happy New Year!

So glad you could make it today, Rebecca.  What are you working on for this coming year? 

In December, Amber House Books is bringing out, ALWAYS A LADY, the second in the Marquess series that began with ONCE A MISTRESS, and January 2015 will see the release of EVER A PRINCESS, the final book in the trilogy.  

I'm currently working on an original manuscript set in Regency London and Scotland, called A BACHELOR STILL, the final book in my FREE FELLOWS LEAGUE series. I'm also writing the first chapters of the next BORROWED BRIDES book: THE RUNAWAY BRIDE: ISABEL'S STORY.
      
That's great news for romance readers. Can you share the best thing over the past year, or your best Christmas gift?

I have two best Christmas gifts. The first was when I was eight when I got a Baby Magic doll. I named her Musette. I still have her. She still works and she sits in a place of honor on my bedroom dresser. The second was the Christmas my husband gave me the money for my first trip to England and Scotland.

Thanks so much for joining us. I'll look forward to visiting with you again when your new books are available. Have a blessed Christmas.

LAST (NOT LEAST, I HOPE) E.E. BURKE

Best Christmas present ever? 
My second daughter, Emily, who was born a few weeks before Christmas. What a wonderful gift! Of course, all three of my daughters are the best gifts ever, but having a baby near Christmas was a special treat. Emily just got married his past October. How time flies!

What am I up to for 2015? 
I'll be publishing the next book in the series, Steam! Romance and Rails. Today I wanted to give our GLIAS readers a little teaser. This is an original scene with two characters who will appear in the next book. I'm also sharing a wonderful pie recipe handed down through my husband's family. His mother taught me how to make the BEST cherry pie ever. Her crust is amazing (once you master it).

The Belmont House, Parsons, Kansas, Christmas Day, 1873
   The tart-sweet smell wafting through the hotel lobby made Billy’s mouth water. Any other day, dessert was reserved for guests, mostly railroad travelers passing through Parsons. But this being Christmas Day, there were no trains running and few guests. So who was getting that pie?
   He tracked the tantalizing smell to the kitchen. As he crept closer to a worktable where the source of the wonderful aroma sat cooling, he kept a wary eye on the dainty woman at the sink peeling potatoes. Despite her size, Mrs. Daines was a force to be reckoned with...and she didn’t stand for stealing.
   When he’d first come to live here, he would’ve hooked the pie without a second thought, and if she’d thrown him out, would’ve said he didn’t care. He hadn’t wanted to be stuck with another family that didn’t want him.
   To his surprise, Mrs. Daines turned out to be different from the other folks he’d stayed with. Oh, she scolded him if he went astray, but she was just as quick to praise when he behaved. As time went by, he found he was less inclined to break her rules.
   Might be he could get away with pinching off a small piece of crust. She hadn’t made tasting a crime—yet.
   “Keep away from the pie, Billy.”
   He jerked to an abrupt halt, his finger and thumb a mere inch away from the golden brown crust. She hadn’t even turned around to look. It was like she had eyes in the back of her head. He peered suspiciously at the thick brown hair confined in a net.
   Before she caught him in the act, he tucked his hands beneath his arms.  “Ain’t touchin’, just sniffin’.”
   She turned with a partially peeled potato in one hand and used a paring knife to gesture. “You aren’t." 
   He got her point without the knife. “No ma’am. Told you, I ain’t touched it.”
   One of her dark eyebrows notched up. “Ain’t isn’t a word.”
   Billy puzzled over this revelation. “Then what is it?”
   “Poor grammar. You have better words to use to express yourself.”
   He huffed in disgust. “Not if you keep taking ‘em away.”
   Her lips twitched like what he'd said amused her. She didn’t smile a whole lot, laughed even less. Maybe that was because she worked so hard, running a busy hotel and caring for a crippled husband. She set the potato and knife aside and wiped her hands on her apron. “Tell you what. I’ll give you new words to replace the old ones.”
   Billy was dead certain the new ones wouldn’t be as good as the old. However, he’d try them out if for no other reason than to please the kind woman who’d taken him. Temporarily. His stays never lasted long. He was like a stray cat that folks might feed and keep around for a while, as long as he was helpful, but they didn’t care if he eventually ran away.
   She crossed to the worktable and picked up a plate that contained bits and pieces of baked crust. The spicy scent of cinnamon teased Billy’s nose. “I always end up with extra dough, and found a good use for it. You may have some.”
   He popped a flaky remnant into his mouth. Umm, sprinkled with sugar and spice. His heart sang. So did his stomach. Rather than waiting for another invitation, he scooped up the remaining pieces. “’S’good,” he mumbled around a mouthful.
   When she cocked up her eyebrow he swallowed before he spoke again. Talking while chewing wasn’t polite in front of a lady. Men weren’t so particular. “You sure are a good cook.”
   The sharpness in her gaze softened. When she dropped that starchy expression, she looked younger, almost pretty. Billy liked to think his mother might've resembled her.
   “I’m glad you’re here to enjoy my cooking,” she said.
   “You are?” Surprised delight collided with wary disbelief. He couldn’t recall anybody being glad to have him around, much less happy about feeding him.
   He started to wipe his sticky fingers on his shirt, and then remembered she didn’t approve when did that, so he licked them instead.
   Without batting an eye, she withdrew a faded dishtowel from her apron pocket and handed it to him. “I have a surprise for you."
   “Something I can eat?” Billy cut a glance at the cooling pie.
   Her brown eyes gleamed. “It’s better than pie.”
   “Nothing’s better than your cherry pie.” He was quite sure about that.
   “What about being adopted? Do you think that might be better?”
   His mouth dropped open. Had he heard right? “You…you want to keep me?”
   She nodded. “Yes, indeed.”
   Billy's heart flew up into his throat. Adopted meant he’d get to stay here until he was grown. Be part of a family. Belong. He’d never belonged to anybody. Not even his Ma had wanted him.
   Mrs. Daines started to look worried when he didn't answer. “Don’t you want to be adopted?”
   He knew he ought to say yes, but his heart remained lodged in his throat and it wouldn't budge, no matter how hard he swallowed. For as long as he could remember, he'd wanted a family...but he wasn't sure he knew how to be part of one.
   “If you’re worried about Mr. Daines, you needn’t be. I can assure you he’s amenable.”
   “A-mean…” Billy frowned in confusion. That was a word she hadn’t given him yet.
   “He’s agreed...and I hope you’ll agree." She twisted her fingers together. "It would be best Christmas present I ever received.”
   This seemed too good to be real, like a dream that would dissolve when he woke up. Before doubt and fear got the jump on him, he nodded.
   “Oh, Billy, I’m so glad…” Her reply came out on a rushed breath. She put her arms around him and gave him a big hug. 
   Slowly, he returned her embrace. At first it felt awkward, but after a moment the strangeness faded and a warm, happy feeling surrounded and filled him up. She stroked his hair with a motherly gesture Billy had seen countless women use with their sons. Tears stung behind his eyelids. He blinked hard. Twelve-year-old boys didn't cry like babies. 
   As she drew back still holding his arms, she gave him an honest-to-goodness genuine smile. “Merry Christmas...son."
   Billy swallowed, and at last his throat cleared. “Merry Christmas... Ma" 
   Ma, that was a good word. The best. He took a deep breath and caught another whiff of that heavenly smell. Didn't mothers bake treats for their boys? The biggest grin spread across his face. "Reckon we ought to celebrate with a piece of that pie?”

Grandma's Cherry Pie Recipe
Crust:
2 c. sifted flour, 1 tsp salt. Cut in 2/3 cu + 2 Tbsp shortening
Sprinkle with 4 Tbsp very cold water
Work together (just until blended); gather dough and press into ball. Refrigerate for an hour. (Can be refrigerated until you’re read to use it if you wrap it in saran wrap.
Divide for top and bottom crust. Roll out 1/8 in. thick. Brush bottom with egg white. Tips: water must be ice cold, don’t over handle the dough.
Filling:
2/4 to 1 c. sugar; 4 Tbsp four; ½ tsp cinnamon; ¼ tsp. almond extract; 1/8 t. red food coloring; three 16 oz. cans of TART cherries (in water, Oregon brand is best). ½ c. of the juice.  1 Tbsp butter. Dump cherries into pie shell. Add food coloring and almond extract. Mix other dry ingredients and sprinkle over cherries. Dot with butter. Put top crust over the mixture. Brush lightly with half and half.
Bake 400, 30 to 40 minutes.

Now, on to the presents...
I'm delighted to report our stocking is full. Many thanks to everyone who contributed!

From Kaki Warner: a paperback of her novel Where the Horses Run (second book in the Heartbreak Creek series) and an eBook of her Christmas novella, Miracle in New Hope

From Becky Lower: an eBook of her first in the Cotillion Ball series, The Reluctant Debutante and her latest The Duplicitous Debutante.


From Sylvia McDaniel: the eBook Deadly from her series Lipstick and Lead


From Jill Marie Landis: three eBooks of her classic romances, Sunflower, After All and Daydreamer


From Rebecca Hagan Lee: three eBooks of The Counterfeit Bride, the latest in her Borrowed Brides series.


From E.E. Burke: a complete eBook set of the series Steam! Romance and Rails, including Passion's Prize, Her Bodyguard and A Dangerous Passion.


For a chance to win, just leave a comment and enter the raffle. We'll announce winners on January 2.


What was your best Christmas present ever?

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