Julia’s Violinist

As a young woman, Julia was in love with a fellow from a neighbouring village. He was handsome, fun to be with, and played the violin so sweetly. Unfortunately, circumstances made it difficult for their romance to continue.

Fast forward twenty years. World War II has been lost. Julia, now a widow with two small children, is trying to rebuild  her life after postwar atrocities left her raped, homeless, and deported.

Gradually she rebuilds her life, but her new husband is hard to live with at times.

A letter arrives from Canada. “I’ve been searching for you  through the Red Cross for years. I’m so happy I’ve found you at last. Please come to me in Canada for a better life.”

By some miracle, her first sweetheart is still alive.  What to do?

Front Cover Only

Julia’s Violinist is available in e-book form on amazon.com. Click here: http://amzn.to/YerEJ7

The paperback version is also available on all amazon sites and on Smashwords.com.

For all e-reader types, you can download Julia’s Violinist from Smashwords.com. Click here: http://bit.ly/VzlHFR

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Dreams and Visions

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My guest today is author Darlene Jones. Yes, that’s her on the camel. Get used to seeing her because she has three novels published and is working on her fourth. Empowered is the second book of her Em and Yves series. You may have read Embattled, where Em singlehandedly tries to stop war. Em is re-incarnated as Jasmine in the stand alone sequel, Empowered.

Dreams and visions.

Both rule Jasmine’s life. Convinced by her childhood visions that her soulmate exists and isn’t just a figment of romance novels, Jasmine pursues Victor relentlessly, believing he is “the one.”

Reincarnation. Is it possible? A dream convinces her so. But, the visions and dream promise much more than a lover. They portend danger and a threat to Jasmine’s perfect life. Who was she in that other life? Why is she so sure she is invincible? Will her beliefs lead her into danger?

And Yves? He is the celestial being assigned to watch over her, and to provide the people to protect her. He must experience again the agony of losing the woman he loves to another as Jasmine and her soulmate fulfill their destiny. Will Yves jeopardize his rise to a position of power by going to her on Earth, or will he give up his love?

Excerpt from Empowered:

Victor grabbed Jasmine’s arm and dragged her to his office. “Don’t you guys all have something to do?” he said over his shoulder, but none of the men moved. He saw Jasmine look back at them and wink.

“You tell her, Vic,” one of the guys hollered just as he slammed the door.

“Woman, what were you thinking when you came here? It’s not safe and you stand out like a sore thumb.” Victor glared at her. “Please, tell me you’re not that dumb.”

“Belize, I think.”

“What?”

“Belize for our honeymoon.”

“Honeymoon!” He heard the guys hooting on the other side of the door and imagined a whole lot of high-fives taking place out there.

“Yes, good snorkeling. We’ll have to have a society wedding of course. But we can keep it small and limit the photographers.”

“You’re totally nuts.” Victor shook his head in disbelief.

“We’ll make beautiful babies,” she cooed smiling up at him.

“Babies?  Babies!” Victor screeched. “Get this straight. We. Are. Not. Getting. Married. We. Are. Not. Making. Babies.” What did it take to make her understand?

“We are,” she said in a matter of fact way that enraged him even more. “We have to.”

“What the hell are you talking about?”

“Victor, I love you. I can feel you in every atom of my body. My bones feel like jelly when I’m with you. Can’t you—?”

“You don’t even know me,” he yelled as he yanked the door open. The guys scrambled out of the way. With one hand on Jasmine’s arm and the other on the small of her back, he propelled her out the door to the waiting men. Jasmine stopped abruptly and Victor’s forward momentum caused him to press against her. He jerked back as if scalded. Jasmine turned to the audience in the doorway and mouthed, “I’ll be back.” Five thumbs turned up.

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Empowered is available at:

Amazon:          http://ow.ly/eArB2

Apple ibook:   http://ow.ly/gzns7

Smashwords:   http://ow.ly/gznit

Website:        www.emandyves.com

A Keeper

Vancouver Island morning

Vancouver Island morning

Andrea works at the wharf in Lund, on the mainland of British Columbia. She shares an apartment with Monique. The two women accompany Jim, a commercial fisherman, to help him get his boat home to Comox on Vancouver Island, because Jim has a bandage on his wrist and a patch over his eye from burns he sustained from melting zinc while working on his fishboat. After a weekend in Comox, the women return to Lund via the ferry, but sparks have already begun to fly between Jim and Andrea.

Commercial troller, traveling

Commercial troller, traveling

Excerpt from The Wind Weeps (Chapter 10 – Jim):

At the ferry terminal, Monique walked a short distance away so I could say goodbye to Andrea.

“Thanks for everything, Andrea. It was great having you over here.” I put my arms around her, being careful not to press too hard on my wrist, which still hurt like hell. But, somehow, I didn’t mind the pain while I was holding Andrea.

I buried my head in her hair. Fresh as a herb garden. I pulled back slightly to give her a kiss and her lips were already on mine. Our body language clicked perfectly. No awkward bumping of noses or clashing of teeth. It was all so easy and natural.

I trusted her and felt I could relax around her. She would never make me feel stupid if I said or did the wrong thing. She bolstered my self-confidence. No more shy guy. This girl was good for me.

“I’ve really enjoyed this weekend,” she said. “Thanks for having us over.” She lifted my bandaged wrist tenderly. “Be sure to look after this, won’t you? That was a nasty burn.”

“Don’t worry.  I’ll take care of it. I need it healed for fishing time. Maybe I’ll see you when I stop in at Lund on my way north in a few weeks?” I watched her expression carefully. She seemed to light up as if she liked the idea. Good. I’d hoped she would. “I’ll call you, okay?”

“Okay. You’ve got Monique’s number, right?” She gave me a light kiss on the cheek. “I’d better run.” She looked over her shoulder. “The foot passengers are already boarding. Take care of yourself.” She picked up her overnight bag and hurried after Monique.

Turn around and let me get one more look at you. I watched as she crossed the parking lot towards the ferry. Almost there, she turned to give me one more wave. Her smile was genuine, natural, beautiful.

Driving home from the ferry terminal, her smile hovered in the front of my mind.  She had me chuckling to myself, as I replayed so many of our moments together. There was something easy and comfortable about being around Andrea. I didn’t feel I had to role-play and try to impress her or be on my guard about what I said or did. I could just be me. She had an innocent way about her, didn’t want or need impressing. I loved that about her.

So unlike Sarah. Most of that woman’s sentences started with “I.” When I went out with Sarah a couple of years ago, I thought she was pretty in an earthy way – the artsy type. But what a left-wing greenie. Nothing wrong with wanting what’s best for the earth, but most of her beliefs involved way too much theory. Great ideas, but in practice, forget it. They just didn’t work.

“Everybody has a right to have enough food,” she said.

“Well, of course, everyone has a right to it,” I agreed, “but sometimes circumstances prevent that from happening, and it doesn’t matter if you have a ‘right’ to it or not. If food’s not available, you don’t get it.”

“How can you be so hard-hearted?”

“I feel bad for starving people, but the reality is we can’t save everyone.”

Then she rolled her eyes and shook her head as if she couldn’t believe my lack of understanding. She walked away muttering something about the bigger picture.

I could have just snapped her up and married her. She’d look good on my arm. But how would we pass the time when we weren’t having sex? Yes, sex. It was just that. It wasn’t making love with her—you need more emotion for that.  But suppose we’d married and had the rest of our lives to spend together? I had a little taste of what that could be like when she deckhanded with me. There were hours sometimes when the fishing was slow and it would have been nice to have a conversation.

“What do you think is going to happen with this new Euro coin they’re trying to get all of Europe to use?” I asked her one day after hearing about it on the radio.

“I don’t know.” She shrugged. “Who cares anyway? That’s way over in Europe. It’s got nothing to do with us.”

“Well, sure it does. It’s going to affect the whole world economy. It’ll probably have a trickle-down effect on the price of my fish.”

“Is that all you can think of? Money?! You’re just like all the rest of those capitalists.”

“How can you say that? It’s what feeds me and pays my bills. What’s wrong with that? And believe me, what happens in European markets will affect all of us here.”

“Oh I sincerely doubt it,” she said.  She blew out an exasperated sigh and picked up one of her paperbacks with the picture of lovers on the cover.

Not a deep thinker. I was disappointed in her. She looked good, worked hard when we were into fish, and was pleasant enough to be around, but something was definitely missing with her. She was all about herself in the here and now. Her only thoughts about the world at large echoed what her left-wing friends repeated. The only original ideas she had were in her artwork; never about practical things.

It just didn’t work for me. Fishing was a hands-on job. About as real as you could get. There was no room for a lot of idealism on a fishboat. If you had a tangle in the lines, you had to get it out fast and get that line fishing again. You couldn’t stand there and philosophize about how many chemicals went into making all that perlon and how it was ruining the environment. Sure I cared about the environment, but this was not the time to get out the placards and protest the use of polyester products in fishing lines.

“Did you know that wearing polyester underwear lowers your sperm count?” she said.

God, she was way out in left field.

“Mine’s cotton.” So there. For once I got the last word.

And now, a couple of years later, in spite of all Sarah’s earlier left wing green talk, it seems she’s turned into quite the little capitalist after all with her gift shop in Lund.

I pulled into my driveway, shaking off thoughts of Sarah and wondering why I ever had anything to do with her when I could have someone like Andrea. I would call tomorrow and make sure I didn’t let her slip away. Andrea was a keeper.

Will they someday sail off into the sunset?

Will they someday sail off into the sunset?

Andrea soon gets herself into a life and death situation. Read more about her in The Wind Weeps.

The Wind Weeps

Available in paperback and Kindle at amazon.com http://amzn.to/XQY4Wl

at amazon.co.uk  http://amzn.to/XQZG2i

and in all other e-reader formats at smashwords.com http://bit.ly/zO2Lm9

The Wind Weeps is also available at Chapters in Nanaimo, B.C.,

and at bookstores in Courtenay, B. C.

A Tale of Two Heroes

 

 

Hi, Anneli.

Thank you so much for having me on your blog today. It’s a real pleasure!

Well, what’s been going on with me lately? I have been ULTRA busy, that’s what! It’s my own silly fault because this year I decided it was time to up the stakes a bit. It was time to look after the most important people in my life…no, not my husband Mr Big…MY READERS!

I am going to attempt to bring you all a brand new novel every six months! ‘Can it be done?’ I hear you cry. Well, who knows? I certainly hope so! But it does mean I’m spending most days with two men! And what’s wrong about that? Add in some chocolate and wine and you’ve got the perfect life, right? The trouble is, between them, they can get pretty exhausting! Let me introduce them to you!

Nathan

Nathan

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This is Nathan Regan. He’s the star male in my first romantic suspense novel, Security. It’s being brought to you by my wonderful publishers, Sapphire Star Publishing, on 4 April 2013. Mark the calendar!

Nathan’s just been appointed as bodyguard to pop diva, Autumn Raine and he isn’t very happy about it. Autumn is hard work. She titivates constantly and has been ruined by the life of luxury she’s been living.

Nathan’s as down-to-earth as they come; rough, ready, the quintessential action hero. But although he has many scars on the outside, it’s the ones on the inside that hurt the most. Beneath this brash exterior is a very complicated man. I do love a man with inner vulnerability! What do you think? Is he hot?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How about this one? Do you like him? Well, this is Guy Duval (Guy pronounced ‘Gey’ because he’s French) and he’s the male lead in the novel I’m halfway through writing at the moment. It’s called Do You Remember? and I’m working towards an October 2013 release for it.

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Guy’s a professional footballer, just signed to a UK team and when he opens a brand new leisure centre he’s reacquainted with his first love, schoolteacher Emma Barron.

There are actually two stories going on in this book as I’ve used flashback chapters to tell the story of Guy and Emma first meeting back in 2005. Hopefully this will take the reader on two journeys. One tracks teenagers falling in love and the other details how things have changed and how circumstances have altered these people.

Unlike Nathan, Guy is a bit more clean-cut. He’s been living the celebrity lifestyle, he’s rich and successful, and he has a model girlfriend. Life couldn’t get any better you’re thinking. Well, he’s desperately unhappy and because of events of the past he is full of self-loathing and a shame he can’t get rid of.

I hope I’ve intrigued you enough to find out more!

Mandy Baggot

Mandy Baggot

Bio

Mandy Baggot brings you award-winning fiction. In 2012 she won the coveted Innovation in Romantic Fiction award at the UK’s Festival of Romance. Her novel Strings Attached was also short listed for Best Author Published Read.

Mandy writes strong contemporary romance and characters you’ll fall in love with. Previously self-published, she was signed by US publishing house Sapphire Star Publishing in January 2012. Shortly afterwards she became a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association. Mandy is also a featured author at innovative writer/reader website Loveahappyending.com.

A self-confessed Twitter addict, Mandy also likes to show off her singing talents on You Tube – check out Lady Gaga! She has auditioned for X Factor, appeared on ITV1s Who Dares Sings and longs to duet with Bryan Adams. She also has a fondness for white wine, mashed potato, country music and World’s Strongest Man.

Mandy lives near Salisbury in Wiltshire, UK with her husband, two daughters and two cats called Kravitz and Springsteen.

www.mandybaggot.com

https://twitter.com/mandybaggot

http://www.sapphirestarpublishing.com/mandybaggot

Escape to Love

ESCAPE TO LOVE by Emma Calin – Launch Tour

 

Hello Anneli from way across the pond!

A big thank you for hosting me at the very start of the  blog tour for my brand new book ‘Escape To Love.’ I can’t think of a better place than Canada for escaping and getting away from it all.  I have visited several times and never failed to be impressed by the people, their take on life as well as the magnificent vast countryside.

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Amazon Link to Escape To Love

Although I am launching this book around St Valentine’s Day, with all its traditions of hearts and flowers, Escape To Love is far from the traditional format of a classic romance. I wanted to create a suspenseful love story that did not take place in the usual glamorous settings, or between characters with successful careers or opulent lifestyles.  This is a tough story about choices made in extremis by people with little to lose.

This is my fourth publication with Gallo-Romano Media.  I have tried to combine the passion of my first romance novel (Knockout!) with the grit and urban struggle of my two short stories (Sub-Prime and The Chosen).  Escape To Love was supposed to be a full length novel, however has been edited down to what I am told is a ‘novellette’ at just over ten thousand words, keeping it pacey and tight.

As with the last two books, this comes with a FREE downloadable MP3 audiobook – so you can choose to read, or sit back, relax and listen.  The book is available from Amazon worldwide at US$2.99, CAN$3.00, £UK1.89, €2.6. Amazon Link to Escape To Love

I would like to gift a copy to this blog for the first reader out of the hat who posts a comment below.  This is in e-book format (for Kindle and others with Amazon Apps) and includes the download link to the MP3 audiobook version (1 hour 20 minutes).

Luckily most of us reading this blog are not and hopefully will never be, in the same situation as Maria, the lead character in this book  – but if you had to choose, where would you Escape To Love this Valentine’s Day?  Answers below for a chance to win!

Book Description:

Even in the barren wasteland of urban decay new green life is possible. In nature and in love, that which can be somehow finds a crack, a corner, or ledge and grasps its chance of life.

A woman on the run from domestic violence with no one but her vulnerable and damaged teenage child as a companion, lives in isolation and fear. While her hand to mouth scenarios are played out in the shadow of a threatening suspense, a story of crime and love unfolds around her. She cannot risk her child. Her own longings for love and romance have to take a poor second place. When the fallout from a prison break, a hero rescue, and a murder mystery crash through her door and into her need and loneliness, it is no longer a crime story. It is a question of when love in itself is a crime and how far a woman will go in its name and for those she loves.

 

About Emma…

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Emma Calin was born in London in 1962. She currently lives in France and the UK.

She has been writing since childhood and has won numerous local, national, and international prizes for poetry and short stories.

“Knockout! A Passionate Police Romance” is a love story set against a backdrop of international gambling corruption and deception. Interpol cop Anna Leyton finds herself torn between love and duty when her professional and private life intersects. A video teaser for this book is available in the right hand column of this author page, below the blog – it shows a scene from the trailer of a bedroom with the caption “desire consumes.” This book is now available in both paperback and Kindle formats.

“Sub-Prime” is a prize-winning hard hitting short story about courage, exploitation and love. It is a raw and brutal exposé of life at the bottom in the aftermath of recession. Available in Kindle format which includes a FREE downloadable audiobook

“The Chosen” is also a short story,  set in modern times where working people struggle to keep their dreams alive. A world where the promise of love motivates desperate measures. Available in Kindle format, which includes a FREE downloadable audiobook.

Links:

Escape To Love – viewBook.at/B00B9ZZYL0

or amazon.com

Emma Calin Blog: http://www.emmacalin.blogspot.com

Emma Calin Website:  http://www.emmacalin.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/emma.calin

and pages: http://www.facebook.com/Knockout.Romance.Novel & http://www.facebook.com/TheChosenbyEmmaCalin  http://www.facebook.com/Escape2Love

 

Twitter: @Emma Calin
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/emmacalin/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4915751.Emma_Calin

 

Amazon links to other books by Emma Calin:

Knockout! A Passionate Police Romance