To Love is to Conquer without Shedding Blood.

‘Not so rough!’ 9 watched 23 hurl the human across the rock floor. ‘We need the specimen unharmed.’
23 grunted before skulking into the darkness.

Continue reading “To Love is to Conquer without Shedding Blood.”

Lost Love and Hard Won Happiness!

Mel and I exit the car and make our way down to the creek where we’ve been told we’ll find Fenella Rose-Waterman, heroine and manageress of, The Cranky Lizard Winery.

It’s a hot day and we both welcome the cool shade which envelopes us as we near the Creek. Clear, sparkling waters run down the ravine and over rocks creating an aura of sublime peacefulness.

“There she is.”

Mel points to our left where a petite woman with midnight hair and clothes that match, stands, skipping pebbles across the surface of the water.

“Hi, Fenella.”

I wave as the two of us toddle toward her.

“Hi.”

She steps off the log she’d perched on and saunters over to us, hand outstretched. Her green eyes are bright, but gaurded, unlike her expression which is open in a blank sort of way.

“Juantia said we’d find you down here. How are you?” Mel shakes her hand and we all stroll back to the log Fenella had stood on moments earlier and sit down, Fenella between us.

“Fine.” She leans back and picks up a reptile, “This is Lucky.”

I cringe a little and Mel admires the scaley spiked headed beast.

“He won’t bite.”

A soft grin lightens up her face as she strokes the Bearded Dragon, sporting a red collar and matching leash, before putting him down on the ground before us.

“So, care to tell our readers a little about yourself?” I decide to start the interview.

“Muzz and Liv Waterman adopted me after my own mum died. They accepted me with all my troubles and worries. Never gave up on me. So here I remained, and now I manage the place.”

“That’s wonderful. Do you have any regrets?”

“I trusted a ratbag with my heart and my business.”

“Ratbag?”

“My ex. He emptied out the winery’s bank account.”

Mel and I give each other a painful glance. Wolves in sheeps clothing are every where these days!

“How do you see yourself?”

Fenella cocks her head and a dark shadow passes across her gaze.

“A survivor. I’ll never let anyone break me. But the shadows of my past seem darker on my down days.”

Mel shifts on her seat, “I like your leather bracelts.”

Fenella subconcoiusly grips one and twists. The movement pushes it up and I catch a glimpse of keloid scarring. This girly’s been through helluva lot more than she lets on.

“Anyone special in your life?”

Fenella’s eyes shoot toward me before she looks down as a frown creases her brow.

“He’s back.”

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

“He?” Mel gives Fenella and interested look.

“Kieran Murphy. But it’s too dangerous to get too close.”

I give Mel a , What the heck?, look and she shrugs.

The distant rumble of a car engine and tyres on gravel echoes across the warm air.

“Look. I’ve gotta go. It was great meeting you guys. Please feel free to pop by for a bottle of wine, on me.” She proffers a small smile then stands up, “Come Lucky, works a waiting.”

 

When the shadows ride in Wongan Creek…

Juanta Kees

Fenella Rose-Waterman is happy running The Cranky Lizard winery until a broken relationship lifts the lid on the Pandora’s Box of her past. After years of repressed memories haunting her dreams, she is forced to face the truth to find justice. But with truth comes a danger that puts everyone she loves at risk.

Kieran Murphy left Wongan Creek a newly-wed and returned a widower. He believes he and his young son will find healing in the town that healed him once before. Instead, he finds the woman he loved running scared, her life in turmoil and her business under threat.

As the shadows of the past gather on the horizon, will they lose their chance of happiness or will they find healing together?

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A Forgotten Teen, a Killer, and a Town on Edge.

Today Melanie and I find ourselves in beautiful Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, USA!

It’s Cold! Queenslanders are so not used to snow and wind which cuts right through thermal undies.  Though we are rather enchanted by the soft white powder fluttering down from the clouds, covering everything in ice and wonder.

 

 

We’re here to chat with Bailey Johnson, the main character in Danielle’s suspense series , Mail Boat.

We find the teen waiting for us in a local coffee shop sipping hot cocoa and pretty much keeping to herself. Her light brown hair, which is tied back, has a soft wave to it with delicate wisps escaping from the sides.

“She looks like any other teen, but this bunny has seen some darkness,” Mel whispers into my ear as we make our way toward the table.

I nod and pay closer attention to the teen. Mel’s right. There’s pain in those sharp bright eyes, pain a girl her age should not know.

“Hi Bailey.”

We greet the girl in unison.

“It’s nice to meet you. Thanks for coming out all this way.” Bailey welcomes us.

We sit down and a waitress pops over to take our orders.

“Two hot cocoa’s please.”

“So Bailey, could you tell us a little bit about yourself?” I start the interview as Melanie places her Ipad on the table and readies her keyboard.

“What would you like to know?” She eyeballs the both of us before sipping her sweet chocolatey drink.

“Are you from Lake Geneva, or did you move here later in life with your family?” Mel asks as the waitress returns and places two steaming hot drinks before us.

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“I guess I really don’t come from anywhere. I went into foster care when I was five because my mom and her boyfriend-of-the-day were doing drugs and getting into fights.

I never knew who my dad was, but I like to dream he’s basically some badass superhero and he’ll come rescue me someday. ”

Her sad words cause both Mel and I to swallow hard.

“Is there any person you admire?”

“Oh, God, I wish you hadn’t asked. It feels so weird, how much I look up to him, but…

Tommy. He’s been the Mailboat captain for just about forever—fifty years or something—and, like, he just never changes. I can count on him, you know? No matter how many times I close my eyes and count to ten, he’s still there when I open them again. And he likes to listen to me ramble about stupid little things like my secret pet mouse—yes, I told him—and strange things I read in books, and… he’s just kind of amazing.”

 

 

I glance toward Mel. I know the teens words warm her heart as much as they do mine.

“What about school and do you have a part time job?”

“I go to Badger High School, and I’m a MAIL JUMPER!”

“A mail jumper?”

“If you live on the lake around here, you can get your mail delivered by boat. It’s a tradition that goes back, like, a hundred years and we still do it every summer. The mail jumper (that’s me) stands on the front of this big, old tour boat, then jumps off as it passes the pier. We have to run to the mailbox, put in the mail, then get back to the boat.”

 

 

“Do you enjoy it?”

“Oh yeah! I don’t think I’ll go far in life, but landing this job is more prestegious than being crowned home coming queen!”

“Thats awesome. We’ve heard you’ve seen a little action as a mail jumper. Would you like to tell us about it?”

Bailey sits back and stares out of the window before she returns her attention to us.

“Thing is, the boat’s so big, it can’t actually stop at every pier or the mail route would take forever. So the boat just cruises by. We mail jumpers have to get back on board in time… or we end up in the lake.

If we miss the boat, it’s usually a big laugh for the tourists. But then there was that one time I fell in and found a dead body…”

Mel and I stifle a Gasp. But Bailey’s face is straight, it’s only her eyes that  give us any idea of the shock she’d experienced.

 

 

“ ‘Debris’ really wasn’t the right word to describe the object submerged at the end of [the] pier. Actually, he probably would have been quite the hunk, if he hadn’t been all dead and everything. You know, tanned skin, sun-bleached hair, bulging biceps. Beach dude in a business suit. But the fact that he was tied to the pier post by his neck—with his head hanging at a weird angle—yeah. He needed to work on his approach if he was trying to pick up chicks.” ~ Bailey, Mailboat I

“Bailey, thank you so much for chatting with us, and good luck with school and mail jumping.”

About the Author.

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Danielle Lincoln Hanna is the author of the Mailboat Suspense Series, set in Lake Geneva, WI. While she now lives in the Rocky Mountains of Montana, her first love is still the Great Plains of North Dakota where she was born. When she’s not writing, you can find her hiking, biking, camping, and kayaking. She also loves to spoil her readers with monthly giveaways featuring her favorite reads and souvenirs from her travels. For access to the drawings, be sure to sign up for her newsletter.

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Shunned, Lost, and in Danger. Will Victoria find Love?

AnneMarie Brear BookBaybZ

 

AnneMarie Brear has been a life-long reader and started writing in 1997 when her children were small. She has a love of history, of grand old English houses and a fascination of what might have happened beyond their walls. Her interests include reading, genealogy, watching movies, spending time with family and eating chocolate – not always in that order!

Q. What literary pilgrimages have you gone on?

Having lived in England, I was fortunate to travel to many places of historical interest where I’ve set my books. York in Yorkshire is one of my favourite places and was situated only an hour’s drive from where I lived so I was able to travel there quite often and walk the streets my characters did. I also visited a great many country house estates which helped my research enormously.

Q. What was an early experience where you learned that language had power?

Probably as a small child and learning to read and make up stories. My mother own a bookshop so I was surrounded by books all my childhood and was transported by the stories I read.

Q. What did you edit out of this book?

Nothing, really. When I first started writing my stories were huge, far too long for publishing and I was always being told by editors to cut the word count, which is so hard to do. Now, after years of practice I know how to write a story to the required word count that is considered more suitable for the publishing standards.

Q. On your writing journey, what has been the lowest and the most painful moment and vice versa?

The lowest would be when my UK agent died just as I was starting my career. That was a set back I wasn’t expecting and it took me a long time to get over it. The high was getting a review from a reader saying my books reminded her of Catherine Cookson’s book, an author I loved reading as a teenager back in the 80s. Another high was seeing my first hardcover book cover, it was perfect. Another high was holding my first book in my hands for the first time – actually that doesn’t ever get old. I love seeing each book arrive.

 

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The Slum Angel 

Orphan, Victoria Carlton is brought up by her uncle, a banker, to be a lady and make a good marriage. Yet, she is drawn to help the poor families in the slums, much to her family’s disgust. When her uncle dies suddenly, her cousins blame Victoria, and she is thrown out of the house with nothing.

Victoria flees to the poor side of York to start again in a world that is full of perils. To combat the heartache of being without her family, she befriends the destitute women and children in the slums, but such friendships come with the danger of disease, and increasing poverty, and the threat of a brutal man could cost her everything.

Can Victoria find the security she has lost? Will a certain doctor be the man she can give her heart to? Or will the ghosts of the past return to take away everything she has worked so hard for?

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Alpha Rocks Stars, True Love, and A Special Girls Heart.

The humidity outside is a killer today. Mel and I are grateful that the large club has super awesome air-conditioning, working overtime.

“Hi.” A sweet, plump, bright red-haired girl greets us. “You’re here for the Luke Jones / BookBaybZ interview?”

Mel and I nod as we peer around the large dark entrance as the girls toddles off to find our interviewee. The bar, which sits down the back of the club, is decorated in a myriad of different shaped bottles containing a variety of alcohols. The black tiled floor is dotted with tables and chairs, with an open space, I assume is the dance floor, which stands between the tables and a large stage with a silver sequenced curtain draped across it.

“Hi.” A sultry voice ripples across the stale beer infused air.

“Hi.” We turn and both hold out our hand. A cheeky grin spreads across his handsome face as he reaches out and shakes both our hands simultaneously.

“This is Mel,” I wave toward my partner in crime. “And you can call me Mich.”

“Luke. Let’s sit.” He waves us toward an alcove with plush red leather seats.

“Mike!” He calls out to the barman.

“The usual?” A tall lanky built man, with hair I doubt has ever seen a comb, calls back.

“Yeah… What would you girls like?”

What a smile. The old cliché of melting panties with a smile, is no lie.

“Water.”

“Soda.”

Our voices echo in unison across the open club.

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Mel takes out her iPad and keyboard as I fold open my sheet of paper and questions.

“Shall we get started?” Mel pushes back the spectacles slipping down he nose.

“Yeah.” Luke drapes himself over the chair.

Q. When and why did you start playing, and what was your first instrument?

I can’t remember a time when I didn’t play. There are photos of me from a very young age struggling to pluck away at a guitar that was bigger than me. My dad taught me, as he did all of his four boys. It was kind of this special skill and interest that brought us closer as a family, and especially as father and son.

We’d sit around and sing and play, just jamming out whatever came into our minds. Or we’d do it jukebox style. Our mom would yell out a song and if us kids didn’t know it, Dad would call out the keys and cords and we’d jam it that way.

Q. Which instruments do you play?

Guitar is really where it’s at for me, although I hold my own on keys. I also  know my way a drum kit, but I sound like a proper drummer after they’ve been hit by a truck, and are forced to play with their arms in traction.

I sing too, so I guess you could say I can play my vocal chords.

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Q. Which famous musicians have you learned from?

I’m lucky enough that I get to play with some of the most talented musicians on the planet, and I learn from them every day. Don’t get me wrong, I have my favorites and idols – Hendrix, Santana, John Mayer, to name a few. But cheesy as it sounds, my bandmates inspire me more in real life as I’ve witnessed what it’s taken to get as far as they have. That even goes for my brother. Bahahaha!

Q.Have you ever written a song, and if so, what inspired it.

Arlo writes most of the songs for the band, but I’ve actually written and recorded a whole album, which I will be releasing as a solo artist next year. The thought is both exciting and terrifying.

In terms of what inspired it, it was a number of things, but the most influential by far was an epiphany.  I guess you could call me a late bloomer, but it just recently occurred to me that we only get one shot at this crazy thing called life. There are no do-overs. Therefore we owe it to ourselves and to the people we love to make the best we can of it every single day. Until I am to that realization, I wasn’t doing that. In fact, I was getting in my own way, and blocking my own path to happiness.

This album is about the events that lead me to that clarity of thought, and  how every day  I’m determined to repay the happiness debt I owe, both to myself, and to my love.

 

Luke Jones is the central character of MV Ellis’ rock star romance Finding Marnie, released February 12th 2019. He also features heavily in the rest of the Heartless Few series, of which Finding Marnie is book four.

 

Finding Marnie

Their love is a legacy of broken hearts and shattered dreams. Can they find each other without losing themselves?

He is everything I want but know I can never have.

Every fiber of my being has ached for Luke from the very first moment we met. However, with my parents’ legacy of toxic obsession woven into my DNA, I know love is pain and should be avoided at all costs. I’m unloved and unlovable. Still, in moments of weakness, I allow myself to imagine what it would be like if I was the kind of woman who deserved the love of a man like him.

She is hiding in plain sight, waiting for me to find her.

Marnie has had my heart from day one, and always will. It’s just a shame I couldn’t muster the words to tell her so when we first locked eyes. It’s a failing I will live to regret for years to come. However, I’m determined to make things right, even if it takes me a lifetime. I need her to know she is enough. In fact, she is more than that. She is everything.

They’re hiding in plain sight. Can they find each other without losing themselves?

 

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MV Ellis

MV Ellis & BookBaybZ

MV ELLIS knows what it’s like to fall head over heels in love with a badass musician. She followed her heart halfway around the world to be with one. She moved from London to Sydney after a steamy holiday romance with a sexy bass player in sultry Brazil.

Fourteen years, two children and a dog later, and she’s still smitten. All this with a guy she sat next to on a bus for 36 hours! She has toured internationally as a ‘WAG’, and her experiences inspire her writing.

Ellis’ love of romance began when she was 11 years old, after a summer spent secretly reading her auntie’s books. She’s been a sucker for an alpha hero and strong heroine ever since.

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