Dangerous Deeds

Beth Prentice is the USA Today Bestselling Author of the Westport Mysteries, The Unleashed Mysteries and the Aloha Lagoon Samantha Reynolds Mysteries. Killer Unleashed, her GHP debut novel, received a bronze medal in the 2016 Readers Favorite International Book Awards. Her main wish is to write books you can sit back, relax with, and escape from your everyday life…and ones that you walk away from with a smile! When she’s not writing you will usually find her at the beach with a coffee in hand, pursuing her favorite pastime—people watching!

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Q. What sentences in writing have changed your life?

I’m not sure any writing has changed my life, but one line I wrote definitely affirmed it. It’s from Dangerous Deeds and is something I believe deeply. Discrimination is wrong.

Q. Which book left you empty inside once you finished writing it?

None. I always leave my books on a happy note. I want the reader to close the book and walk away with a smile.

Q. What is the best opening sentence you have written?

“You have dialed emergency triple zero. Your call is being connected.” Invitation to Murder. This line immediately pulls the reader into the action – someone has just phoned emergency – Oh, my goodness! What’s happened? Every reader who reads that first line needs to know the answers and more.

Q. Have you ever read the ending of a book after only reading the first few chapters? If no, why, if yes…why?

Lol, I always read the last page first!! It relieves the anxiety of not knowing what’s going to happen and then I can relax and enjoy the story J

Q. What don’t you want to see in a well-written villain that happens frequently?

I hate it when the villain is just plain bad and doesn’t have any other qualities. Even bad guys believe what they are doing is for good reasons. They’re multi-dimensional and need to be portrayed that way J

Q. Who is the best villain you have written to date?

I think Joe Woods from Dangerous Deeds. He reappears in Deathly Desire, the third instalment in that series. He thinks he’s a great guy and full of love, but he’s seriously evil.

Q. Best closing scene, you have written?

I think it’s the last chapter in Deathly Desire, the third instalment in The Westport Mysteries. We learn what happens to Lizzie and her stalker. I don’t want to give too much away, but I’d made the decision for something bad to happen to a major character in that series. This scene wraps everything up and still gives me the feels when I read it.

Dangerous Deeds BookBaybZ

Who knew buying a house could be so dangerous…

Lizzie Fuller bought a lonely, run down old house that pulled on her heartstrings. Why? Probably because it reminded her of herself.

What she didn’t bargain for was the engagement ring and letters of forbidden love hidden under the attic floorboards. Nor the lazy cat, or the drop-dead gorgeous handyman. And she definitely didn’t want the stalker.

As the renovation begins and the house starts to slowly return to its former glory, the letters dog her dreams. Why was the writer forced to turn away from his love? Why was their love forbidden? And why was this all hidden under the floorboards?

Filled with a drive to reunite the ring with its rightful owner Lizzie sets on a journey of lost love, heartache, and public damnation.

But can she restore the house to its former glory, and find who it all once belonged to before her stalker catches up with her? Or will she lose everything…including her life?

Dangerous Deeds is the first book in this light-hearted romantic mystery series. If you like crazy families, fun engaging reads, and a sweet romance, all tied together with a ribbon of danger then you’ll love this first book in The Westport Mystery Series

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Loss, Love, Redemption and a Miracle on Four Hooves.

I’ve been to Scotland before, as has Mel. That doesn’t stop us from being struck afresh by the beauty of the lochs and mountains.

The drive from Inverness up to Lairg is every bit as challenging as Sadie found it when she first arrived, except that it’s summer and there is no sheep auction due for some time.

Epona Lairg Michelle Dalton Author

I’ve accompanied Mel, (my partner in writing all things steampunkerish and my fellow BookBaybZ) to interview Sadie Munro, heroine and horse whisperer extraordinaire, the main character of my new bestselling release Epona.

We pull up to a large stone mansion. Scaffolding hugs its west wing. The beautifully manicured garden sports summer blooms and emerald green grass. The front door opens and out steps a woman I know almost as well as I know myself.

“You made it!” She smiles bringing together her hands beneath her chin as her fiery curls hug her cherry cheeked face. They emphasise eyes as green as the manicured lawn.

“Please to meet you.” Mel walks up and holds out her hand.

“Any friend on Mich’s…” She wraps a warm hug around Mel.

“Good to see you again.” I squeeze her shoulder before stepping inside the wide open entrance of Saorsa.

 

 

 

“How are Nan and Oupa?” I ask as she waves us toward her study.

“Oh very well. They are in town, meeting with the council, then they are going to play bridge with friends.” Sadie smiles and the enitre room lights up. “Come sit down, Giles will be in shortly with some tea and some of Mrs Perkins home-made short bread.”

“That’s nice.” Mel smiles when a greying gentleman in a suit walks in, tray in hand, and places it down on the table before us.

“Well don’t mind me,” I sit back with a steaming cup of Oolong, “Mel knows what she wants to ask.

Mel fires up her trusty iPad and nibbles on her lip, apparently unsure where to start.

“It’s been quite a journey for you, Sadie, and I’m not just referring to the hills. How have you been getting on?”

“It’s been interesting. Good, not easy but we’re happy… I’m happy, thanks.”

“You met your neighbour, Blane, under less than ideal circumstances. Do you think that’s why things were a bit tense between you?”

Sadie sits back in her chair hugging her cup of tea as she considers Mel’s question. The green of her eyes sharpen as a soft blush caresses the freckles on her face.

“Yes and no. It’s hard to see past the trauma when you sitting plum in the middle of it. I think the fact that his presence reminded me there was still good in the dark world I was lost in. It scared me, still does some days.”

Epona Michelle Dalton Author

I nod and bite into my biscuit. “Gosh these are good.”

“Leave one for me.” Mel looks at me over the rim of her glasses. I answer with a cheeky grin.

“Have you always had a connection to horses?”

“Since I can remember. Theirs were the first voices I heard as a child. They’re mighty and majestic, I often shudder to think I nearly pushed them away from my life.”

“Starting over in a new place seems like such a great thing to do. But that’s not your experience, is it?”

“I guess it helped that I arrived with no expectations. I was a hollow shell when I knocked on Munro Manor’s front door. It’s strange, like the soul of a horse who knows her kind, I knew I’d come home. I mean Africa was home, but she expelled me, and Scotland opened up her arms as though she knew I’d return to her someday.”

“Was there a moment when you turned a corner and saw a future, after all the grief of the past?”

Sadie swallows hard, leans forward and places her cup on the tray then places her elbows on her knees and looks Mel dead in the eye.

“The night Epona found me. But as humans, I guess we’re always turning corners aren’t we?”

“Thanks for your time and the great shortbread.” Mel smiles as she sits back and tucks in to her tea and biscuit.

“It’s such a pleasure. Please come back anytime.” Sadie replies.

EPONA

Michelle Dalton Author Epona Romance Womens Fiction BookBaybZ

Can Sadie overcome the trauma of her past and find redemption in the wild Scottish Highlands?

After a horrendous attack on her family farm in South Africa takes the lives of her loved ones and leaves her wounded, her only escape is to leave the country of her birth for the highlands of Scotland and her last living relatives. But Sadie’s life may still be in danger.
Blane Buchan is an Englishmen living in the small highland town of Lairg, seeking a life away from the emptiness of London society and a past he’d rather forget.

When Sadie finds a mysterious blue roan mare, she must use the gift given to her from Epona; Protector of horses. But the mare just might be the one who saves her.

From the mountains of South Africa to the wintry Highland Moors this is a story of redemption, love and the powerful connection between humans and horses.

Epona Michelle Dalton Author BookBaybZ Bestseller

 

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Cherry Blossoms, Umbrellas, and Heroes in Tutus.

About the Book

Literary Crush Publishing brings you a new spring anthology with four brand new sweet romance stories each written around the theme: April Showers.

 

About Your Story Jayne Kingsley

Cherry On Top

Adeline Miller has just accepted her dream job coordinating the final event of the National Cherry Blossom Festival, but being back opens up old wounds she’d rather keep buried.

Mason Smith knows he’d be nothing without Clarise and Jeffery Miller. They fostered him when he was a teenager and gave him a chance. But he knows, better than anyone, that he is to blame for the rift between them and their only daughter, Adeline.

A young love that wasn’t to be, can Mason now prove he’s worth the risk? Is Adeline ready, finally, to admit why she ran away, and by doing so achieve everything she wants in life and love?

Jayne Kinglsey

Jayne Kingsley writes contemporary romance filled with fashionable and fun heroines and hunky heroes. She holds a Bachelor of Design – Fashion and Textiles and spent 12 years working in the Fashion industry before hanging up her stilettos (temporarily) for life as a mum.

Q. Have you ever read the ending of a book after only reading the first few chapters? If no, why, if yes…why? 

Yes, either to find out who the real hero is or to check there is a happy ending, I don’t like books that don’t have an obvious happy ending. Having just read Stella’s answer I might hide now though 🙂

Excerpt from Cherry on Top

                                “Adeline?” A soft voice sounded behind her.

Oh no.

He wasn’t supposed to be here. She’d checked the guest list. Twice. His name wasn‘t there, which was the only reason she’d ticked yes to coming tonight.

Taking a deep breath, she turned on the spot; the air whooshing out as her eyes met whiskey brown depths. She stared, unable to pull her focus away before a slight bump from behind and distant apology flicked the switch back on her brain. Taking another sip of her glass she realized she’d finished it. Well done Addie, not quite the sophisticated image she’d been hoping to project. Mason signaled a waiter, taking her empty glass and replacing it with a full one, his fingers brushing hers with a whisper touch, yet she still felt the sizzle all the way to her heart…

 

About Your Story Stella Quinn

The Umbrella Diaries

Duncan needs a hero — he just isn’t expecting her to turn up on his front porch under a tattered red umbrella.

Marianne needs a new venue for her dance school to escape the unwanted attentions of a creepy groundsman, so the For Let advertisement in the newspaper seems like a lucky omen. Enquiries to 241 Hope Street, Cathedral Springs, between four and five pm, today only.

She plucks an umbrella from the stand in the hallway and sets off for make her enquiry. Her dance school business means everything to her; since the injury which destroyed her career, it’s the only dream for her future she has left. And today, she’s feeling lucky.

Duncan doesn’t leave his house. Not today, not yesterday, not since he left the hospital all those months ago with steel pins holding his leg together and the words of a dying teenager imprinted forever on his brain.

Turns out, he doesn’t mind living grumpy and alone in his big old house. At least, that’s what he’s been telling himself.

But then one day a young ballet teacher knocks on his door and pirouettes her way straight into his heart. Duncan’s going to have to find the courage to forgive himself if he wants a chance at living in the world again. And now he’s got a reason to try.

Stella Quinn

Believes romance, adventure and escape are the reasons we love to read. They’re also the reasons she loves to write. She’s just finished a trio of holiday romance novels:  Tropic Storm, Stowaway, which came second in the RWA Emerald Award for best unpublished manuscript in 2018, and Island Fling, which won the coveted Valerie Parv Award in 2018. She is thrilled her novella, The Umbrella Diaries, is being published in Literary Crush Publishing’s 2019 April Showers anthology, and she has a short story, Beneath The Waves, published in an RWA Australia anthology.

Q. What sentences in writing have changed your life? 

Some poetry lines have stuck with me over the years. “Twas brillig, and the slithy toves did gire and gymble in the wabe”, from Jabberwocky – I love this because it’s nonsense, but the heft and hew of it still manages to convey voice and imagery. Another is from a poem by Alfred Noyes: “The highwayman came riding, riding, riding; the highwayman came riding, upon a moonlit shore”, which I love for the sheer romance of it. Horse manes ruffling in a sea breeze, the thunder of their hooves … wonderful. There are heaps more, but those lines have been circling in my brain for decades.

Excerpt from Umbrella Diaries

Tuesday it was raining. Not that he was watching for her, because why would he be? He just happened to be at the window, that’s all. Purple leggings. Black boots with a heel that seemed a tad reckless given the icy conditions of the sidewalk. A coat of – what was that color? Grass green? Pea green? Frog green?

And today’s umbrella was tartan, like the tins of shortbread he remembered from the pantry when he was a boy. She’ll put the umbrella down to come through the gate, he thought. Then he’d see her face. But she put down the knapsack she brought with her each day to work instead. Dropped a hand over the latch and was through and out of sight before he could finish the thought. Not to worry. It couldn’t rain all week, and then she’d have no need of an umbrella. He could wait until the next day. He was good at waiting.

Connect with with these gorgeous Authors

Stella Quinn

I’d love it if readers could subscribe to my newsletter so I can let them know about all the upcoming releases I have scheduled for 2019.

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Jayne Kingsley

As Stella has said, I’d love if readers would like to subscribe to my newsletter to stay in touch, sign up even comes with a free short story!

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Thank You for taking the time to chat to us about your writing and your book.

Stella: Thank YOU Michelle and Melanie xxxxxx

JK: Thank you for having us lovely ladies! xxx

Making wingspan in a wind-tossed world

My new romance, Grounded, is set in an alternative reality where human beings have wings – by my protagonists can’t fly.

My initial world-building entailed working out how buildings, furniture, clothes, transport and physiognomy worked, and then how that affected Clementine and Benedick, my couple looking for their Happy Ever After.

It soon became clear, though, that another aspect of a reality where most people can fly is how that would affect language. Every community and culture has its slang terms, its metaphors, its insults and in-jokes.

Creating a wing-related vernacular became one of my favourite aspects of writing Grounded, and in fact gave me my favourite metaphor for its theme.

Clementine Torres is an artist who was born without wings, which makes her quite tiny in a world where most others take up room with the span of the wings as well as the height of their bodies.  It’s easy for Clementine to be overlooked and people often bump into her.

Clementine is determined to be seen, however. She uses her art and her words to make ‘wingspan’.

Born wingless, she’d never known what it was to fly, but on days like this Clementine knew exactly what it would feel like. It was a rush in the blood, the flavour of air and sound, the uplift of beauty beyond the ordinary, the luminescent spark of life in commonplace things. And okay, maybe that’s not what flying really was, but Clementine didn’t care. This was her wingspan, the way she spread her metaphorical wings and soared through the world, capturing a part of it rarely seen by the winged.

 

The concept of ‘wingspan’ is only the beginning of course. So many aspects of life can be rendered with an apt bird-related metaphor.  In this alternative world, the inhabitants of Australis don’t have eBay, they use Magpie; they have a search engine called Echolocater instead of Google. And if you break the law, you end up in the Cage rather than the Clink.

People who fly would make reference to the elements, I thought. When people are feeling chirpy (aha!) they say they are ‘sunshiney with loads of lift’.  If things are going poorly, they’re ‘a sun-blighted mess’.

‘Sun blister it,’ they’ll snarl if they want to swear,  or they’ll refer to ‘sunblistering featherheads’.

Humans will forever find insults for other humans, and the Grounded world has its share of ‘entitled featherweights’, ‘feather-pluckers’ and ‘storm-blighted buzzards’, as well as ‘squawkers’ with a lot of flap but no lift.

There are the really nasty insults too. Crawler and grub are both pejorative terms for people who can’t fly, but in turn, fliers can be called ‘flappers’ –  a term for a ‘vapid winged idiot’.’ More flap than glide’ says one character, offended by the use of ‘crawler’.

Benedick uses the insult against himself in a fit of  self-recrimination:

‘Wind-blighted, feather-plucked, useless flapper,’ he cursed himself then stopped, shuddering, drawing heaving breaths.

He was not having a good day. Luckily, his brother Peri is good at teasing him back to good humour. Peri says Benedick is ‘so chill, like a crow in a blizzard’. He also calls him a stern old puffin.

Clementine is the type to not give a cold, salty crosswind what anybody thinks, while Benedick sometimes feels a-tumble, like a wind-tossed sparrow.

In the end, though, these two lovebirds will find ways to give each other lift and wingspan, and metaphorically fly into a golden sunset.

 

 

Narrelle M Harris

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I’ve written over 30 novels and short stories, published in Australia, US and the UK. My award nominations include Fly By Night (Ned Kelly Award), Witch Honour and Witch Faith (the George Turner Prize), and Walking Shadows (Chronos Awards; Davitt Awards). My ghost/crime story Jane won the Athenaeum Library’s “Body in the Library” prize at the 2017 Scarlet Stiletto Awards.

My spec-fic het romance, Grounded, is out on 20 March 2019 with Escape Publishing, but I also write vampire novels, erotic spy adventures, het and queer romance, traditional Holmesian mysteries, and Holmes/Watson romances. On Patreon, I write the Duo Ex Machina series of M/M romance crime novellas. Number One Fan is currently being serialised there and will be on general release in around May.

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Grounded Blurb

In a world where flight is life, will two grounded people find other ways to fly?

When Benedick Sasaki’s wings are wounded in the line of duty, the former policeman doesn’t know if he has a place in a world where he can no longer fly.

The seductive truth about neighbours and Win!

 

Law & Disorder

by Liv Arnold

Lawyer Juliet Jackson has come head to head with Sergeant Jesse Burns on numerous occasions in court. He is provoking. Pigheaded. Punch-worthy. They don’t get along. Not one little bit. The unfortunate fact he’s also her next-door neighbour sends her loathing off the charts. But when Juliet’s caught locked outside her home in nothing but a skimpy towel, she must swallow her pride and turn to Jesse for help. She doesn’t expect the explosive chemistry between them and can’t help but wonder if Jesse’s as demanding in the bedroom as he is in the courtroom.

 

Law & Disorder by Liv Arnold

About Law & Disorder

I’ve watched the TV show Neighbours since I was a child. I used to come home from school, get changed, have a snack then sit down and watch. I love the community behind the storylines and the more light-hearted moments. So, I thought it would be a fun idea to have the heroine and hero as neighbours, but spice things up a little.

Liv Arnold AuthorAbout Liv

Liv Arnold has worked as a copywriter for several global companies and now runs her own freelance business. She grew up in Melbourne, Australia, and lives with her husband and their spoiled dog, who only eats freshly cooked meals. When she’s not writing, Liv’s avoiding the gym, devouring a cheese platter, or marathoning way too much TV. And of course, she’s a massive book addict and often reads until all hours of the night.

 

Q. What sentences in writing have changed your life?

That’s a hard one. There’re no sentences that spring to mind. I found The Kite Runner written so beautifully. So much so in another book I’m writing, The Kite Runner is the main character’s favourite book.

Q. Which book left you empty inside once you finished writing it?

Haven’t had that feeling so far. I’m so relieved when I finish my book and want to get stuck into the editing and my next book. I get distracted easily and work on multiple projects at once.

Q. What is the best opening sentence you have written?

I’m drafting a YA fantasy romance that moves at a fast pace. Every chapter ends on a cliff-hanger and I tried to build intrigue from the first sentence with: How to Tell the Difference Between a Regular Mirror and a Two-way Surveillance Mirror?

BookBaybZ John Jennings

Q. Have you ever read the ending of a book after only reading the first few chapters? If no, why, if yes…why?

I hardly ever do that because I like to read from start to finish. I read an erotica though called The Awakening of Sleeping Beauty. I usually don’t read erotica (must have a romance in the story for me), so I read the first few chapters and the end. Was curious if the main character escaped being a slave and if she got her HEA.

Q. What don’t you want to see in a well-written villain that happens frequently?

A villain that has no clear internal conflicts or motivation. There’s also so many clichés that comes with villains – they’re ugly, they wear dark colours, there’s nothing relatable about them. I love 3D characters where the reader might end up sympathising with the villain’s cause.

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Q.Who is the best villain you have written to date?

In my next book, Etched in Stone, I’ve written a Constable character who’s a little bit of a villain. Well she causes a lot of trouble for the main characters anyway through blackmail, abuse of power and threats. She stops at nothing to achieve what she wants to get her justice, but she has strong motives.

Q.Best closing scene, you have written?

My closing scenes usually has a little bit of humour in them or a twist at the end. Hard to explain without giving the ending away. For example, my short story The Commander and the Beast which was in the finals for the Monash Short Story Competition: Read it Here

This story was my first that placed in a competition and it ends with a twist that hopefully people wouldn’t have seen coming.

Competition Time

BookBaybZ and Liv Arnold Author

To win a copy of Law & Disorder, please follow my page www.facebook.com/livarnoldauthor and message me telling me you’ve followed. Winner will be drawn on 31 March 2019.

 

 

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