Tag Archives: GoodReads

Guest Post Third Daughter: Multicultural Steampunk by Susan Kaye Quinn

10 Mar
The Third Daughter of the Queen wants to marry for love, but rumors of a new flying weapon force her to accept a barbarian princeís proposal of a peace-brokering marriage.

Third Daughter: Multicultural Steampunk
by Susan Kaye Quinn

What is steampunk? Most people have a vague idea that steampunk stories, as a genre, “have steam power in them” and, as an aesthetic, steampunk looks something like 19th century Victorian England. From brass goggles to buttoned-up costumes, movies like Sherlock Holmes, books like Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan, and costumes from the tinkers and crafters DIY culture, all give us a feel for this British-centric steampunk.

But a closer look at the many cool steampunk books coming out today reveals stories and characters moving “Beyond Victoriana” into cultures that existed outside Britain in the 19th century… or even cultures that are entirely fantasy analogues of the ones existing at that time.

When I set out to write Third Daughter (set in an analog east-India that I call Steampunk Goes to Bollywood), I didn’t intend to write multicultural steampunk. I started with a princess named Aniri sneaking out to meet her lover Devesh in the fantasy country of Dharia. As I developed the characters and the plot, I quickly realized that all my characters were east-Indian, and that the three countries tangled up in political intrigues and saber-rattling were actually analogs for the East-West conflicts that can be found in modern India today, as well as the cultural conflicts felt by Indians who live outside of the subcontinent. Don’t ask me why, but my steampunk was flavored east-Indian from the start!

But as the story evolved, I found rich and deep cultural issues to mine for the conflicts in my novel. In my story, the supposedly “backward” country of Jungali represents the deep cultural identity of traditional India (my main character’s ideas about the backwardness of those traditions change throughout the story, and I hope, reflects the fond sentiments for at least some of those traditions). The second largest country of Samir represents the Western influence – in this case, the technological advancements of steampunk technology. And finally, the largest country, Dharia, is a picture of modern India – an, at times, uneasy integration of both the Western (steampunk) and Eastern (traditional) influences.

In Third Daughter, I took all these cultural influences, turned them upside down by creating a matriarchical ruling structure (where lineage goes through the Daughters of the Queen), and crafted a story that’s both romance and adventure. And I hope something fresh and new.

Steampunk is nothing if not wildly creative, and I love exploring this genre with a multicultural twist – so much so that I plan on writing at least two more novels in The Dharian Affairs Trilogy (Second Daughter and First Daughter). I hope you’ll give them a try!

~*~
Susan Kaye Quinn is the author of the bestselling Mindjack Trilogy, which is young adult science fiction. Her latest release is Third Daughter (The Dharian Affairs #1) which is her excuse to dress up in corsets and fight with swords. She also has a dark-and-gritty SF serial called The Debt Collector and a middle grade fantasy called Faery Swap. It’s possible she’s easily distracted. She always has more speculative fiction fun in the works. You can find out what she’s up to by subscribing to her newsletter (hint: new subscribers get a free short story!) or by stopping by her blog (www.susankayequinn.com).

Third Daughter (The Dharian Affairs #1)
Kindle | Nook | Print

 

2013 Debut Author Giveaway Hop

3 Dec

It’s time again for yet another giveaway. This time Kathy at I’m A Reader Not A Writer teamed up with Mary at BookHounds and organized the 2013 Debut Author Giveaway Hop. Thank you, ladies!

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The giveaway runs from 12/04-12/11 with the winner announcement on my site on 12/12. Its title is pretty much explanatory: the participants must give away books of authors who published their first novel during 2013.

I have quite a few favorite authors I discovered this year, but for this blog hop I decided on Ana Calin and her debut novel The Blacksmith.

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What drew me to Ana’s is her writing voice. I remember first reading a blog of hers and getting sucked in. Her voice is catchy, with a richness that reminds me of dark chocolate, black cats and quicksand. Intriguing combination you might say but that’s the best way I can describe her style. 

For lovers of demons and angels, suspense and mystery mixed with romance, The Blacksmith is for you. I’m giving away one e-copy to one lucky winner. For your chance to win it you must become a follower of this blog (thank you very much!). If you are already then befriend me on Goodreads. If you do not have an account on GoodReads then you can either like me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter. Leave in the comment section the venue you’re following me and under what name.

Good luck everyone!

 

VBT–A Fantasy Christmas. Review and Excerpt

20 Nov

Authors Cindy C Bennett, Stephanie Fowers, and Sherry Gammon have joined forces for a Christmas anthology. Each has written a romantic Christmas short story with a fantasy theme. There are Elves (think Legolas), Witches, and  Greek gods!

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While I haven’t read the entire anthology I did read Sherry’s short story Loving Marigold. My review is posted on Goodreads, Amanzon and B&N, and decided to post it here as well.

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So here we go:

As with everything else Sherry Gammon writes, I had to read her newest story titled Loving Marigold. What a delight it was. I’m not saying that because I’m afraid Marigold will turn me into a toad but because I truly enjoy the story, the characters, and the plot line.

We find out from the first pages that Marigold, a high school freshman, is a good witch, channeling her gifts and figuring out first love. We also are introduced to Jack Mahoney, the boy that aside from being tall and handsome, also plays basketball and has a lot of girls fawning over him, including the Fartitious Twins.

I liked Jack as soon as he opened his mouth; his sense of humor laced with sarcasm makes him not only funny but he stands out on the page. Next time we meet Jack it’s nine years later, when he returns to the same town he went to school with Marigold. The two of them meet again, soon realizing the sparks they had in high school never died out. Quite the contrary.

Unfortunate circumstances throw the two of them together. Past secrets are brought to the light and their love tested once again. How do they come out of it? Well, that’s something you have to find for yourself.

What I loved about this novella is its fast pace, clean plot line, its innocent romance, a little mystery and great characters. I smiled and laughed out loud many times, Jack’s quirkiness completing Marigold’s wit like peanut butter and jelly—a match made in heaven.

I’ve been a fan of Sherry’s novels ever since she began writing, finding this particular story where her voice shines through. A great read, definitely a keeper for my bookshelf.

Purchase A Fantasy Christmas-Click on links:

Amazon     Barnes and Noble     Smashwords

A Fantasy Christmas blog     Facebook

EXCERPT

Loving Marigold by Sherry Gammon

The familiar whisperings of witch began as I weaved through the thick crowd. I spotted Jack sitting on a desk, a can of Diet Pepsi in his hand.

“Marigold, I’m glad you came.” He greeted me with a tight grin as he stood and came toward me.

“I was passing by when I saw all of this.” I gestured to the Mylar balloons floating about the room and the blue streamers draped from the lights and across the chalkboard. “I came in to see what’s going on and saw the cake.”

“Really?” he questioned. “Fiona and Felecia said they invited you, but you had a date with some guy you’ve been seeing over in Grantsville.”

For a moment, I could have sworn sadness touched his eyes, but looking closer into the deep pools of brown, I saw nothing.

I let the comment pass, fearing I’d lose my temper over the lie the sisters told him and feed the witch rumors. “Where are you going? Is there a basketball tournament I didn’t know about?”

“No. I . . . Uh, I’m moving to Port Fare, New York.” His voice held a strange chill now. Why is he acting so weird?“The high school there has an awesome basketball team and my parents think I’ll stand a better chance at getting a college scholarship there than I will at Podunk, West Virginia High.”

“Your dad’s giving up his job for the chance that you might get a scholarship?” The move seemed a bit impetuous. Jack had talent, but Dirk, the forward on the team, played better.

“My dad works from home so it doesn’t matter where we li—” Two of Jack’s teammates jumped him from behind and one poured a bottle of Gatorade down his back. Jack howled playfully as I jumped back.

“You’re dead, Cliff,” Jack shouted after the boy with the now empty bottle. “Sorry, Marigold. I have to get a little revenge. Maybe we can talk later.” Jack took off after his teammates and I turned to leave, not wanting to be there another moment. Was I the only one who imagined that the week we’d spent together was special? It also hurt that he so readily believed the twins about my having a boyfriend.

“Why the tears, witch?” Fiona asked. She appeared out of nowhere, blocking my escape route. She propped her hands on her hips, her short denim skirt rode up several inches. Felecia, wearing almost the exact same outfit, mimicked her sister’s pose.

“Excuse me. I don’t want to be late for my bus.” I dropped my gaze downward, too upset to try to deal with their games at the moment. I attempted to go around the obnoxious twins, only they were having none of it.

“You actually believed Jack liked you, didn’t you?” Felecia asked, flicking a strand of my frizzy hair.

I snapped my head up and glared into the girl’s watery gray eyes. “Is that why you lied and told him I had a boyfriend and couldn’t come to the party?” At least, I hoped that was what happened. Because if Jack really didn’t care about me . . .  I shivered at the thought.

“We know you’ve put a spell on him, witch. He wanders the halls searching for you between classes, and Fiona caught him doodling your name on his notebook,” Felecia bit out between her clamped teeth. “He’s clearly bewitched.”

“So you’re protecting him from me then?” I asked, stepping toward the twins.

“That’s right.” Fiona offered up a nasty sneer. “I saw him first, and since I can’t compete against your black magic voodoo, I invented a boyfriend for you. Now Jack thinks you’ve been playing both ends.”

I moved even closer as they each crept back. “Wh-what does it matter, witch?” Felicia said, her hands shaking. “He’s leaving in the morning for Port Fare. You would have lost him anyway.”

I stopped. They had a point. What did it matter? The boy I loved was leaving. The only person ever to have defended me against the witch taunts. I turned for the door, but stopped when I heard the twins’ snide laughter. It burned hot in my stomach. Before clearing the door, I casually flipped my hair over my shoulder, or at least I hoped it looked that way to my classmates. In fact, the gesture meant much more. Through my strands of hair, I wiggled my index finger at the Farious twins. A stink rose from the girls so vile people actually tripped over themselves in an effort to escape. When the unmistakable noises started, laughter filled the room and fingers pointed at the girls who would forevermore be known as the Fartious twins.

 

Promo Blast–Broken Fences by Kelly Gendron. Excerpt and Giveaway

28 Oct

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Synopsis

Colden Saint James, Dusty Owens, and a single night of passion had equaled to poor old Mr. McAllister’s broken fence.Add six years, a troublemaking photo, and there’s not a fence in Texas that’s gonna be safe.
It took Dusty Owens two years to land Colden “Saint” James, even if it was for only one night, but the very next day, he was gone. Now, years later, the “Saint” has returned, but he’s no longer the do-gooder rookie cop Dusty remembers.
Dusty Owens always had a way of making every single one of Colden’s man parts go all hard. He’d been so close to falling for the girl before he’d left Odessa. Now, due to a troublemaking photo, Colden must return to his hometown to keep her safe. Trouble is, he’s a different man—not to mention the change. Well, it’s gonna cause all kinds of problems where Dusty Owens and all of his man parts are concerned.

EXCERPT

“No,” he said in a harsh whisper. Barely touching her, his large form hovered over her body.

She couldn’t move or say anything. Immobilized by the fear induced by the man who pinned her to the bed, her panting carried on in the shadowy room.

“No, don’t do this.” He cradled her face gently with large hands. “Don’t be afraid of me. Not like this. You hear me?” The moonlight illuminated his eyes. They glistened with affection. “You be frightened when I kiss you.” His mouth brushed over hers.

Her breath caught in her throat from the brief kiss and from the way he passionately gazed down at her.

“Be afraid of the feeling you get between your legs when I touch you.” The weight of his body lowered on hers, his thick hardness imbedding her flesh. “Fear me when I’m finally deep inside of you.” He pressed closer.

She let out a cry of desire, not from fear. Her hips moved as she tried to rock against him.

A smile touched his strong lips, and his tempting mouth lay suspended over hers. “You fear what we will become when I again make you mine, sweetheart.”

The warmth of his words cascaded her flushed face. The tenderness in his voice and the soft pressure of his palms upon her cheeks added need to her already desirous want.

“And what you should really be afraid of… what you need to fear,” his eyes dropped to her mouth, a rough thumb passed over her quivering lip, “is what you mean to me in here.” Colden tapped his chest as dark eyes lifted back to hers. “Because being trapped in here, Dusty girl…” He pointed to his heart. “Well, that should scare you a lot more than being safe out here with only your arms around me.” 

Amazon    B&N    Smashword    Kobo    iTunes 

About the Author

Kelly_Gendron

Kelly resides in a quiet suburb somewhere between Buffalo and Niagara Falls, NY. Her day job? Kelly works in health care representing a group of nursing facilities in the WNY area. She’s been faithfully writing for three years but did write her first book ten years ago. She put it down to raise her son as a single mom and then picked it back up when she and her son finally grew up. That’s when she settled into her newly married adult life and started to seriously write again. She’s dabbled with Romantic Suspense stories, but recently she’s been on an Adult Contemporary Romance kick.
 
Links:

Facebook      Twitter      Website
Goodreads     Goodreads Book Link

 Giveaway: $15.00 Amazon egift card. For your chance to win click HERE.


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VBT–Loving Liberty by Belinda Boring. Excerpt and Giveaway

26 Oct

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Book Info:
 
Title: Loving Liberty
Author: Belinda Boring
Genres: Contemporary Romance, New Adult Romance
Categories: Coming of Age
Publisher: Blushing Heart Press
Release Date: 7/14/2013
Heat Level: Sweet
Word Count/Length: 73,000 words/340 pages
lovinglibertycover
 
 
Buy Links:
 
Amazon         B&N          iBooks        Smashwords
 
Synopsis:
 
Liberty Montgomery is many things:
 
A dutiful daughter.
Perfect wife-in-training.
Easy to manipulate.
Compliant.
 
But secretly she wants more.
 
For years, Liberty has dreamed of a life filled with opportunities—a life where she makes the decisions, living by her own rules. Unfortunately, her parents have other plans for her, ones that involve her submission and total obedience. Every attempt to break free from their control is met with threats, leaving her feeling trapped. Just when all seems hopeless, Liberty meets Oliver Nichols. With just two words, be brave, he stirs up her secret longings for more . . . friendship, fun, and independence. He almost has her believing her dreams are possible. However, taking a stand can be terrifying when you’ve spent your entire life pleasing others.
 
Are some chances worth taking? What would she risk for freedom?
 
Author Bio:
Bels HSc
 
A homesick Aussie living amongst the cactus and mountains of Arizona, Belinda Boring is a self proclaimed addict of romance and all things swoon worthy. It wasn’t long before she began writing, pouring her imagination and creativity into the stories she dreams. Whether urban fantasy, paranormal romance or romance in general, Belinda strives to share great plots with heart and characters that you can’t help but connect with. Of course, she wouldn’t be Belinda without adding heroes she hopes will curl your toes. Surrounded by a supportive cast of family, friends, and the man she gives her heart and soul to, Belinda is living the good life. Happy reading!
 
~Contact Links:
 
Facebook       Twitter        Website        Pinterest

Book Trailer

EXCERPT

“Liberty . . .”

The mere mention of my name heightened the intensity between us. He didn’t finish his sentence, instead choosing to trace his finger down the side of my cheek. His hand trailed lower, over my shoulder, and down my back before returning to my hip. The action sent a pulsing shiver through me and I blushed. I couldn’t help it.

“I don’t know what I like more. Your smile, laugh, or how beautiful you look when you blush.” He caressed the side of my face again like he was unable to stop himself. “I catch myself saying things just to see if I can make your skin flush this pretty pink.” He brushed his fingers through the side of my hair, the gesture so tender that it sent another ripple of trembles through me.

“You shouldn’t say things like that, Oliver,” I murmured.

“Probably not, but I can’t help it. Maybe I am dangerous.” He moistened his lips and moved a fraction closer.

“Definitely.” The word was a faint whisper and I leaned in.

Oliver was going to kiss me. There was no doubt about it. I ignored the warning voice in my head that told me this was going too fast. I gave in to the moment, thinking of nothing but how incredible being kissed by the one person who had managed to turn my insides into a riot of emotions was going to feel.

“Tell me to stop.” His breath fanned across my lips.

Giveaway:
1 signed print copy of “Loving Liberty” PLUS swag

For the giveaway click HERE.

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Book Blast – Bronze by B.B. Shepherd

5 Oct

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I’m A Reader Not A Writer Tours Presents:

Bronze

The Glister Journals: Bronze

Allison Anderson knows she’s a little different, but it hadn’t bothered her too much-until now. Moving away from everything she’s ever known to a new house, new neighborhood, and new school is bad enough, but it’s her first year of high school too, making it even more intimidating. She’s more aware of her social and physical limitations than ever before. And then there are the new people she meets: the tough-looking girl in her home room; the cute but dangerous-looking boy she first saw before school even started; the quiet, older girl who keeps to herself; the sullen-looking, seemingly isolated junior that doesn’t seem to trust or like her at all. Can she trust them? While the peaceful situation of her new home only amplifies the sound of her own doubts, she begins to learn that things are not always what they seem, and her world is turned upside-down by these new friends, two-legged and otherwise. Life soon becomes more complicated, and much more interesting!

Author B.B. Shepherd

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I grew up in California, graduating from Cal Poly and doing graduate work through Chapman University and UC Santa Cruz. I continue my education in many areas; I don’t think I’ll ever be done completely. Horses, literature, music, and art have been my passions as long as I can remember.

“Bronze” is my first novel, but I feel I’ve been working on it all my life. It is the first volume of a four book series called “The Glister Journals.”

In writing, I seem to enjoy exploring emotions and analyzing motivation. I also like trying to find the funny side of things. I admit to being a hopeless romantic and often get in trouble for my sense of humor.

Website * Facebook * Goodreads

 

$100 BookBlast Giveaway

$100 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 10/18/13

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Stuck In A Good Book–Giveaway Hop

19 Sep

StuckinaGoodBook Hop

September 20th to 25th

Hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer & Valerie from Stuck in Books

The main rule of this hop is to share a book you couldn’t put down. Sounds easy?

Not really, because I have so many such books so dear to me but also know that I’d break the bank if I were to give away all of them. On the other hand I’d be unfair to the ones I don’t mention. So what do I do?

I decided to narrow it down to what I read this year and my favorite pick would be ARMS WIDE OPEN by Juli Caldwell.

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I read this novella in one sitting and I loved every bit of it.  And because I liked it so much I will be giving away 3 e-copies to 3 lucky winners. All you have to do is become a friend on GoodReads and answering to the question: WHAT WAS YOUR FAVE BOOK THIS YEAR?

Good luck everyone and don’t forget to hop over to the other bloggers for more fun prizes!

Winner Announcement for the Books To Movies Giveaway Hop

4 Sep

The Books To Movies Giveaway is over. Using random.org the lucky winner taking home The White Queen by Philippa Gregory is … Allana P.

 

September Is For Sequels Giveaway Hop

2 Sep
September is for Sequels Giveaway Hop
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September 2nd to 9th
The general rule for this fun hop (with over 100 bloggers signed up) is that the book must be a sequel in a series, can’t be the first one, but it can be any number from 2 on.
As it happens, a few months ago I released book # 2  in my historical romance series Dacian Legends titled BORN IN SIN, a perfect match for this giveaway. Over 600 people added the book to their TBR list on GoodReads since its release, gaining on average 4.11stars ratings on the same site. So excited about its success.
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For your chance to win one e-copy all you have to do is add BORN IN SIN to your TBR list on GoodReads. In the comments section leave a link to your TBR and your answer to the question: WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE SERIES?
I have way too many series that I absolutely love, but lately I’ve been in a historical-romance-crave so I’d say Mary Baloghs series about the Bedwyn’s siblings is my favorite. 
Don’t forget to hop over to the other bloggers. Everyone has amazing giveaways!

Author In The House–Rosie Amber

29 Aug

The beauty of maintaining a blog is that I get to meet people from all over the world. I get to find out about their hobbies, their likes and dislikes and in the process we become friends.

One of them is Rosie Amber. She is an author and blogger from the UK. Today she graciously agreed to stop by and tell us a little about herself. 

Rosie, the floor is all yours!

Hi,

My name is Rosie Amber, I’m an author, book reviewer and blogger. I live in the county of Hampshire in the UK.

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My first published book is called “Talk of the Playground” and is a fun tale of the ins and outs of an English village school. I call it my work of love rather than my work of art because it meant so much to me at the time. I learnt a lot about writing and self-publishing from my experience and I have a sequel which I’m slowly working on.

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To be honest my blog has taken over much of my time and I adore adding and improving it as much as I can. I love reading and gave myself a target of 100 books to read this year with the Goodreads 2013 challenge. As I’ve already read 95 books already this year, I think I need to increase my target. Nearly every book I read gets a review on Goodreads and my blog, with links to my Facebook author page and Twitter. If I’ve downloaded the book from Amazon to my Kindle, authors get a review there too.  I also do Guest Author Interviews and I’ve recently re-vamped my interviews making them a lot more interesting.

http://rosieamber.wordpress.com/

In 2013 I’ve been lucky enough to be invited to write a monthly book review page for a local magazine called “Fleet Life”. 5000 copies go out locally and the magazine has an online version too, I usually review 5 books of my choice per month for the magazine.

I’ve recently been encouraging some teenage book readers to write book reviews for my blog. They give my readers a different perspective on books and they get to build up work for their own personal profiles. So far they have all received some great comments and support from my readers.

I love keeping my blog fresh; back in April I got involved with the April A to Z Challenge and I blogged my way through the alphabet matching book titles to the letters of the alphabet. I sent out a message on my blog and on Twitter inviting authors to promote their books with me and away we went.

I’m also writing weekly updates on a year-long challenge that I set myself on the day I began reading a book called “A Year of Doing Good” by Judith O’Reilly. http://www.amazon.com/Year-Doing-Good-Judith-OReilly/dp/0670921130/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1377026211&sr=1-1&keywords=a+year+of+doing+good

Judith challenged herself to do Good Deeds for a whole year and wrote a truly inspirational book about what happened. Judith undertook giant acts of good, my own challenge is to do just 1 Good Deed a day for a year and so far I’ve managed it since the middle of April. Some days it’s something simple like picking up litter, other days I bake cakes, lend books, or give to charity. Every Sunday I update my readers with my latest deeds. I’ve inspired others to take up the baton and I’d love to hear from anyone else who felt inspire to give it a go.

http://rosieamber.wordpress.com/my-year-of-doing-good-deeds/

Not content to sit still I am just organizing a “Romancing September Across the World Tour” with fellow blogger Stephanie Hurt. http://stephanie-hurt.com/ On all of the 30 days in September we have an author who has written a romance or has romance within their work, who gets a book interview from me in the UK, then when the sun rises over Georgia, USA the author gets a second promotion of their work on the same day, and they join Stephanie who asks them about writing romance in today’s world.

http://rosieamber.wordpress.com/romancing-september-tour/

I’d like to thank Cami for inviting me to her blog today.

Rosie, the pleasure is all mine! Thanks for stopping by!