Monday, May 22, 2017

Monday's Montage Mantlepiece: What the Heart Wants

She’s a rebel. He follows the rules.

He’s a romantic. She doesn’t have time for hearts and flowers.

Sometimes opposites attract.

Sometimes love doesn’t make sense.

But you know what they say:

The heart wants...

What the heart wants.

Stories Included:
Jami Denise: Ball Out
T.M. Franklin: Drive Me Crazy
Lindsey Gray: Gotcha
Jiffy Kate: Holiday
Jennifer Locklear: Everleigh
Sydney Logan: Meet-Cute
Jeanne McDonald: Love Wanted
Melanie Moreland: Heart Strings
Ayden K. Morgen: The Years Between Us
Jo Richardson: A Still Life

💮💮All proceeds to benefit the Terry Foundation💮💮

Ball Out by Jami Denise
Boone Walker spent most of his life on the back of a horse. As a retired rodeo star, he traded the circuit for a quiet life on his family’s ranch. He has no interest in love or the complications relationships bring with them.

Until he lays eyes on the quirky, beautiful woman at the local coffee shop.

Paisley Stone lives the life of a gypsy. When her van breaks down in the town of Red River, she feels trapped like a caged animal. But after a few months of small town life, it starts to feel like home.

 Even more so when she serves coffee to the moody, ruggedly handsome Boone.

She can’t help but hope he’ll throw a lasso around her heart, and Boone knows that Paisley will be the hardest creature he’s ever had to wrangle.

Drive Me Crazy by TM Franklin
Ben’s a straight-laced college student who always does what’s expected. But when Lilli, a free-spirited musician, gets into his Uber one Friday night, nothing will be the same.

She’s bright and loud and challenges everything about him. Ben hates it. Except that, for some reason, he doesn’t.

And when Lilli keeps tumbling into his passenger seat after a string of increasingly horrible blind dates, he can’t help wondering if fate may be trying to tell him something.

They have nothing in common, but Ben’s done playing it safe. He thinks Lilli might be the one he’s been waiting for . . . if he can only convince her to try one last first date.

Gotcha by Lindsey Gray
The Romance Reassignment Bureau puts right what Fate has wronged. Ben Rigby and his team are the best agents in the business. They are forced to examine their true purpose in the matters of love and destiny, when they receive a double assignment for the same night.

After the wrong halves of each couple meet by accident, can Ben, his team, or even Fate stop these opposites from attracting?

Holiday by Jiffy Kate
Meg Williams decides going abroad alone is what she needs to get out of her current funk. But a bathroom door with no lock and a hankering for coffee when there's only tea, just might make her solo trip turn into an adventure for two.

This is a holiday she’ll never forget.

Everleigh by Jennifer Locklear
A clinical and ambitious surgeon destined to become one of his generation’s best doctors.

An intuitive and compassionate practitioner determined to improve the lives of her patients.

He repairs broken bodies.  She heals broken souls.

Neurosurgery is his soul mate.  Can she be content with being his mistress?

Meet-Cute by Sydney Logan
Meet-Cute: When boy meets girl in a way that’s considered adorable, awkward, or amusing.

Screenwriter Britt Daniels is the queen of the meet-cute. From mixed-up cappuccinos at coffee shops to awkwardly intercepted text messages, Britt creates the perfect first meeting for rom-com movie characters.

Unfortunately for Britt, life doesn’t imitate art.

Or does it?

Hollywood heartthrob Luke Taylor is fed up with demanding divas and spoiled brats. He’s looking for someone simple. Someone sweet.

Someone like Britt Daniels.

When he learns that Britt has a strict no-dating policy when it comes to actors, Luke takes it as a personal challenge.

Unfortunately for him, Britt’s immune to his big blue eyes and trademark charm.

Luke realizes it’s going to take more than Hollywood glitz and glamour to win Britt’s heart. He needs to be sincere. He needs to get creative.

He needs the cutest meet-cute of all.

Love Wanted by Jeanne McDonald
An athletic, confident, visually stimulating man who will end up being yet another heartbreaking disappointment.

Xtine McCoy believes in true love. Soul mates. The one. However, the one never seems to be the guy she chooses. Tired of watching Xtine being kicked around by her romantic whims, her friends take matters into their own hands and force her to date outside her comfort zone.

On paper, Sherman Campbell appears to be everything she’s been looking for. He’s funny, kind, smart, and titillating. The perfect man. That is, until they meet. Caught up by her own preconceived notions of a romantic hero, Xtine struggles to see past the court jester for the knightly prince.

Can Sherman help Xtine find the true love she seeks or will he prove to her once and for all that all men, no matter the type, are the same?

Heart Strings by Melanie Moreland
 A young executive. A street-wise musician.

Two worlds that never should intersect.

Until they do.

Charlotte Preston is tired of the world she inhabits. Her life consists of meetings, deadlines, and budgets. She is surrounded by chaos—stuck in a job she hates, and a life that is slowly killing her. The only thing that brings her happiness and peace is him.

Montgomery Logan is the voice that soothes her at the end of the day. He’s the stranger with the whiskey-colored eyes whose music is the balm to her weary soul.

They never speak. At least not with words.

Until one day things change.

Can their worlds combine? Can they see past their differences for the people they are within? Or will they forever be defined by outward appearance?

The Years Between Us by Ayden K. Morgen
All she wanted was for him to be her first kiss. Instead, he may just be her first heartbreak...

Logan Redfield is everything Hope Tollison is not: legal, gorgeous, and more than a little wild. Sixteen-year-old Hope wants him anyway. She has since the very first moment she tripped and fell into his arms. Unfortunately for her, Logan refuses to cross that line. Instead, he keeps them firmly entrenched in the friend zone.

 Hope waits for him anyway, eager for the day she's finally old enough to take that kiss.

 What she doesn't know might just destroy her though...

Falling for a teenager was never part of Logan's plans. He's too old and too messed up for a sweet girl like Hope. But when he finds himself falling for her anyway, he's forced to do whatever it takes to ignore the way he feels for the one girl he shouldn't want. Even if that means making her hate him for the rest of her life.

 After all, letting her go is the only honorable thing to do.

At least that's what Logan believes... right up until he loses the only future worth fighting for: one with Hope. Now he has to lay it all on the line and convince her to set aside the years between them and trust him with her heart one final time.

Can he do it, or has he broken her beyond repair?

A Still Life by Jo Richardson
Charlotte Sweets has it all. Parents that are still married, great SAT scores, friends, sports, and highly sought after A.P. grades.

 Heath Gooding is just a kid from the wrong side of the river, satisfied that he makes it through each day without getting killed. His goals include living until he’s twenty, and saving up enough money to get out of the Rapids alive.

 When Charlotte’s school visits Heath’s side of town for a volunteer project, the two of them cross paths and find that maybe they aren’t as happy with the status quo as they once thought.

Jami Denise
Jami Denise is an up and coming writer from Southern California.
She writes Contemporary Romance, New Adult, and Erotica.

She has always had a strong desire to write. From a very young age, books became her escape. She loves the freedom to express herself through her stories and share them with others.

Her books are always on the spicy side with a little bit of sweet to make you swoon. Her feisty kittens always give the bad boys a run for their money. She likes taking risks, pushing her characters into directions that challenge the reader and take them out of their element. You'll usually find the unexpected to happen in her stories. Life isn't always pretty, and she likes to layer her words with true grit.

She is a self professed cat lady, addicted to coffee and Monster, cupcake lip balm, and loves all things old,grungy,and fast. She's well versed in sarcasm, and the F-word is her favorite adjective.

When she doesn't have her nose in a book, or fingers on a keyboard, she's spending time with family and friends, watching old movies, and waiting for the next felon to come sweep her off her feet.

TM Franklin
T.M. Franklin writes stories of adventure, romance, & a little magic. A former TV news producer, she decided making stuff up was more fun than reporting the facts. Her first published novel, MORE, was born during National Novel Writing month, a challenge to write a novel in thirty days. MORE was well-received, being selected as a finalist in the 2013 Kindle Book Review Best Indie Book Awards, as well as winning the Suspense/Thriller division of the Blogger Book Fair Reader's Choice Awards. She's since written three additional novels and several best-selling short stories...and there's always more on the way.

Lindsey Gray
Lindsey Gray typed her first complete novel at the age of twelve and dreamed of making her writing into a career. When her eighth grade class wrote a twenty year reunion story, casting her as a mystery novelist, she wasn't sure she could make it a reality. After years of writing off and on, she decided to make a go of it. In December of 2010 she finally made her dream come true with her first published novel, Lies Inside. Five years and thousands of written words later, Lindsey is releasing her seventh published work, Nerdy Girl Nation.​

When Lindsey takes a break from writing, she spends time with her husband of thirteen years and their two children, reading all kinds of romance novels, and hosting her own weekly radio show, Gray Matters, on TMV Cafe Internet Radio.

Jiffy Kate
Jiffy Kate is the joint pen name for Jiff Simpson and Jenny Kate Altman.

You can call them Jiff and Jenny Kate, but they'll answer to just about anything.

Jiff is a Louisiana girl living in Texas. She's currently a substitute teacher, working her way back into the classroom. Her most important job is raising two teenagers and a bulldog named Georgia Rose. She accepts daily prayers on her behalf.

Jenny Kate is an Okie. She works in an accounting department but has a degree in elementary education. When she's not crunching numbers, she's busy parenting an almost teenager and two needy Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Wrigley and Oliver.

When Jiff and Jenny Kate get the chance to escape real life, you can find them collaborating over Whatsapp, immersed in a romance novel, or on a plane heading to their next adventure.

Jennifer Locklear
Jennifer Locklear lives in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. She married her high school sweetheart, Morgan, in 1995. She is the mother of two children, a son and daughter.

Jennifer enjoyed creative writing as an adolescent, but set aside her favorite hobby to concentrate on college studies, career and family. In 2010, she rediscovered her passion for writing when her husband recruited her to edit his own stories. They co-authored and published their debut novel, Exposure, in 2014.

Since 2000, Jennifer has been employed in fundraising and development for a non-profit organization. She has been a contributing reviewer for the “Bookish Temptations” book blog and is a founding moderator of “Argyle Empire,” an approved fan site for author Sylvain Reynard. She also enjoys participating in charitable activities, both locally and online.

Sydney Logan
Sydney Logan is the bestselling author of seven novels. She has also penned several short stories and is a contributor to Chicken Soup for the Soul. A lover of music, she fills her playlist with everyone from Johnny Cash to Eminem.

Sydney holds a Master’s degree in Elementary Education and spends her days surrounded by kids and books. A native of East Tennessee, she enjoys playing piano and relaxing on her porch with her wonderful husband and their very spoiled cat.

Jeanne McDonald
Jeanne McDonald is an author, a mother, a wife, a student of knowledge and of life, a coffee addict, a philosophy novice, a pop culture connoisseur, inspired by music, encouraged by words, and a believer in true love.  When she's not spending time with her family, she can be found reading, writing, enjoying a great film, chatting with friends or diligently working toward her bachelor's degree in literature.  A proud Texan, Jeanne currently resides in the Dallas/Fort Worth area with her family.

Melanie Moreland
Melanie Moreland lives a happy and content life in a quiet area of Ontario with her husband and four children. Nothing means more to her than her friends and family, and she cherishes every moment spent with them.

Known as the quiet one with the big laugh, Melanie works for the sporting teams of a local university. Her (box) office job, while demanding, is rewarding as she cheers on her team to victory.

While seriously addicted to coffee, and somewhat challenged with all things computer-related and technical, she relishes baking, cooking, and trying new recipes for people to sample. She loves to throw dinner parties and socialize, and also enjoys traveling, here and abroad, but finds coming home is always the best part of any trip.

Melanie delights in writing a good romance story with some bumps along the way, but is a true believer in happily ever after. When her head isn’t buried in a book, it is bent over a keyboard, furiously typing away as her characters dictate their creative story lines to her even more inspired tales, for all to enjoy.

Ayden K Morgen
Ayden lives in the heart of Arkansas with her childhood sweetheart/husband of a dozen years, and their five furry minions. When not writing, she spends her time hiking, reading, watching hockey, volunteering, causing mischief, and building a Spork army. Ayden graduated summa cum laude with her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice and Forensic Psychology in 2009 before going on to complete her graduate degree in CJ and Law. She currently puts her education to use in the social services and CJ field.​

Ayden writes contemporary and erotic romance centered around the boys in blue and real-world issues such as domestic abuse and drug trafficking. She also writes young and New Adult fantasy under the penname A.K. Morgen.

Jo Richardson
A movie fanatic, a writer of stories, a lover of life.

Jo grew up in Maryland with four siblings, three parents and an endless number of cousins within the vicinity – but it was too cold up North for this thin blooded girl.  Today, she lives in Florida with her two girls and a husband who shares her same sense of humor and basic take on life as we know it.

Life is too short to put dreams on the back burner.

Jo writes both contemporary and paranormal stories that include mystery, suspense, humor, action, romance, and anything else she can think up.

Jami Denise

TM Franklin

Lindsey Gray

Jiffy Kate

Jennifer Locklear

Sydney Logan

Jeanne McDonald

Melanie Moreland

Ayden K. Morgen

Jo Richardson

Too Many Women in the Room by Joanne Guidoccio

Title: Too Many Women in the Room
Author: Joanne Guidoccio
Series: Gilda Greco Mystery #2
Genre: Mystery
Release Date: May 19, 2017
Publisher: Wild Rose Press
When Gilda Greco invites her closest friends to a VIP dinner, she plans to share David Korba’s signature dishes and launch their joint venture— Xenia, an innovative Greek restaurant near Sudbury, Ontario. Unknown to Gilda, David has also invited Michael Taylor, a lecherous photographer who has throughout the past three decades managed to annoy all the women in the room. One woman follows Michael to a deserted field for his midnight run and stabs him in the jugular.

Gilda’s life is awash with complications as she wrestles with a certain detective’s commitment issues and growing doubts about her risky investment in Xenia. Frustrated, Gilda launches her own investigation and uncovers decades-old secrets and resentments that have festered until they explode into untimely death. Can Gilda outwit a killer bent on killing again?

Definitely in shape, but she had always taken care of herself, not allowing an extra morsel of food to cross her lips and sticking to a daily exercise regimen. Her face…well, her face showed the passages of time. And tonight, without a stitch of makeup, she appeared older than her years. Forty-five. No, fifty. More than fifty. He struggled with the math and gave up.

Head-to-toe black did nothing for her. Once upon a time he would have volunteered that information, but tonight he hesitated. He couldn’t be sure how she would react, especially after the debacle at dinner. He tried to recall what she had said, but nothing came to mind. Perhaps she had said nothing at all. It would be like her to hide behind her passive-aggressiveness.

He forced a smile. “I didn’t expect to see you.”

No response, just a constant gaze and an expressionless face that was starting to worry him. He tried to look away but couldn’t escape those odd-colored eyes. A muddy green with hints of amber. Had she worn contacts in her younger days?

He cleared his throat. “That was some dinner conversation.” In the end, he hadn’t even sat at the table. The collective venom had driven him away.

They continued running, saying nothing. His heart beat faster and his mouth went dry. His senses were on full alert. There was danger here. And he needed to get away. He could turn around and race toward his car. But what if she followed? This was ridiculous. He was allowing himself to be rattled by a middle-aged woman who meant absolutely nothing to him. A woman he would steer clear of in the future.

He slowed his pace and watched as she did the same. He circled and turned around. She followed. Anger rose in his throat. “What the hell do you want?”

No words. Only a fixed gaze and a flash of silver at her side. The faint smell of onions and garlic assaulted his senses. He wrinkled his nose in disgust, all the while watching her carefully. His eyes traveled around the deserted field. Not a soul. And that was the appeal of running close to the midnight hour.

This is not how he had planned his demise, not by a long shot. Despite the age gap between them, he had hoped to survive his wife and take on a full-time paramour, maybe even two. If only he had known, he would have done things so differently. If only he could go back six hours.

Fascinated, he stood still, unable to move as she approached and raised the knife.

A Season for Killing Blondes #1
Hours before the opening of her career counseling practice, Gilda Greco discovers the dead body of golden girl Carrie Ann Godfrey, neatly arranged in the dumpster outside her office. Gilda’s life and budding career are stalled as Detective Carlo Fantin, her former high school crush, conducts the investigation.

When three more dead blondes turn up all brutally strangled and deposited near Gilda’s favorite haunts, she is pegged as a prime suspect for the murders. Frustrated by Carlo’s chilly detective persona and the mean girl antics of Carrie Ann’s meddling relatives, Gilda decides to launch her own investigation. She discovers a gaggle of suspects, among them a yoga instructor in need of anger management training, a lecherous photographer, and fourteen ex-boyfriends.

As the puzzle pieces fall into place, shocking revelations emerge, forcing Gilda to confront the envy and deceit she has long overlooked.

Author Bio:
In 2008, Joanne took advantage of early retirement and decided to launch a second career that would tap into her creative side and utilize her well-honed organizational skills. Slowly, a writing practice emerged. Her articles and book reviews were published in newspapers, magazines, and online. When she tried her hand at fiction, she made reinvention a recurring theme in her novels and short stories. A member of Crime Writers of Canada, Sisters in Crime, and Romance Writers of America, Joanne writes paranormal romance, cozy mysteries, and inspirational literature from her home base of Guelph, Ontario.


Too Many Women in the Room #2

A Season for Killing Blondes #1

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Pre-Order Blitz: The Chauffeur by AP Hallmark

Title: The Chauffeur
Author: AP Hallmark
Genre: Romance
Expected Release Date: June 6, 2017
April Sanders is beautiful and educated. She’s also a chauffeur. Her elite client list is quite extensive, and Jason Rowe is one of them.

From the moment he lays eyes on her, he tries to gain her attention, but unlike the other women he’s encountered, she isn’t impressed. Imagine his surprise when he learns she’s been hired to drive exclusively for the family.

Remaining the dedicated professional, April rejects Jason’s advances. That is until she receives the approval of the family matriarch. Her life will never be the same.

When a business deal goes sour between Jason and a competitive business associate, April gets caught in the crossfire. After a series of suspicious and ominous incidents threaten the Rowes’ inner circle, Jason’s possessive and protective nature knows no bounds where Ms. Sanders is concerned.

The Rowe’s are powerful and have powerful connections. When a member of the family is wounded, there’s no stopping the force behind them.

Just as I’m perusing my schedule for my next customer pickup, Kyle texts and asks me to stop by 2335 Lakeview Drive to meet with him and his mother about the driver position. I couldn’t be more surprised at the coincidence and text back that I’m right out front. He requests that I meet him at the entrance.

I quickly add a bit of lip gloss, lock my car, and just as he said, meets me in the lobby. We silently ride the elevator to the twenty-fifth floor, and when the doors open, he escorts me to a small conference room where a stunning woman is standing, waiting for us.

Kyle stands next to his mother to make the introductions.

“Mother, this is April Sanders She comes highly recommended, and has already been cleared through security. April, this is Grace Rowe.”

“Everyone knows you, Mrs. Rowe. Your charity work is exemplary, and the social events you plan around those charities are well known. It’s an honor to meet you, ma’am.”

I wonder if Emily knows Kyle is her son and then it hits me—Jason Rowe. Could it be?

“My son has been singing your praises, April. I understand that you just met the other evening?” she asks, tilting her head, waiting for my answer.

“Yes, ma’am, that’s correct.”

“I also understand he has outlined the terms of the position?”

“He explained that your current driver is retiring and that you need someone right away. He also said there would be health insurance and an apartment.”

“That pretty much covers it,” she says, scribbling on a piece of paper “Here’s the starting salary. There’s also an annual bonus at Christmas. Is this acceptable to you?”

The number leaves me speechless. She tilts her head again, and I inwardly chuckle at how familiar that action seems to me.

“Yes, ma’am. Quite acceptable, thank you.”

“Can you start tomorrow?”

Surprised that she wants me to start so soon, my brain runs through my current obligations before I answer.

“I’d like to give some notice, but if you need me right away, I’ll do it as soon as I return to my car.”

“Yes, I’m afraid I do need you right away. You see, John will need to show you around before he leaves us, and that doesn’t give you very much time with him, so as soon as possible is vital,” she explains as she looks at Kyle.

“Son, will you go get your brother and sister so that we can introduce them to April?” Kyle nods and hurries to follow her instructions.

While Mrs. Rowe is advising me to contact Human Resources, the door opens, and I hear their voices.

“April, this is my sister, Nicole and this is my brother, Jason. Guys, this is April Sanders. She’ll be our new driver, so be nice to her. Jason, don’t scare her off.”

“April,” he says, gently shaking my hand. “I finally get to see the color of your eyes. They are breathtaking.”

Author Bio:
A.P. Hallmark resides in Reno, Nevada, near her youngest daughter and four grandchildren. A paralegal in real life, she started her love of reading at the young age of fifteen, beginning with her first Harlequin Romance … and Fabio.

Her male characters are strong and possessive, her women are strong and feminine. With two powerful lead characters, her stories are filled with adventure, romance, and sometimes their will to be the last one standing gives her readers a fun ride.

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