Coming Tuesday… A Calculated Risk

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Caitlyn Miller’s limits are tested when an accident lands her father in critical care. As his protégé, she steps up to the plate to run his company but struggles to cover his soaring medical expenses. A solution arises in the form of a second job as bookkeeper at an exotic dance club. If she’s discovered frequenting such an establishment, her reputation in the corporate world could be ruined. But the extra paycheck’s worth the risk.
As interim president Caitlyn’s secretly thrilled to work closely with rogue salesman, Nick Sorenson. His disarming good looks make him nearly impossible to refuse. After he enlists Caitlyn’s help to land a lucrative account, he’s stunned when she vetoes it without explanation. He won’t take no for an answer, jeopardizing his career. But he’ll risk anything for a chance to work side by side with his sexy boss.
Will their gamble lead to true love?

She’s done it again! My dear friend and fellow writer, Joan Chandler, has written another romance novel entitled, A Calculated Risk. It is her best yet, and I am so excited for her! She has a new publisher this time around. Secret Cravings will release A Calculated Risk on Tuesday, September 16th, but it is available now to pre-order. You can also find it at Amazon. It is available in e-print only. Here is an excerpt from her steamy new novel…

EXCERPT:

Caitlyn’s hands were still a little shaky as she tried to unlock the door. Nick reached over to complete the task. He led her straight to a chair where he urged her to sit before he went to pour them a nightcap.
“Just point me to the liquor. I’ll handle the rest. What do you want?”
“Look in the cabinet over the sink. I don’t care. You can surprise me.”
He returned in a few minutes to stand by her side, offering her a pinkish beverage over ice.
“Vodka with grapefruit juice for the lady. Straight scotch for me.”
They each threw back their drinks. Caitlyn nearly drained the tumbler in the first swig.
“Another?” he asked as he took empty vessel from her hand.
“Please.”
He returned quickly. Nick crouched in front of her as she managed to take smaller sips of the second round. He took her free hand in both of his and massaged it. “I’m sorry I asked you to go tonight. I knew dealing with Haigler wouldn’t be the easiest thing to do, but I never imagined I’d be taking you to a place that held such personal memories for you as well. I wouldn’t have invited you if I’d known being there would remind you of better days before the accident. I know tonight was much harder on you than you let on.”
Once he said the words, she began to cry. Nick hated seeing her resolve crumble. He knew inside she must be an emotional wreck, so he tried to be sympathetic and gentle in his manner. Despite his efforts to comfort her, her sadness spilled out in the form of tears. Then, without warning, she threw her arms around his neck and clung to him as she sobbed.
At first he held her close, quietly waiting for the tears to subside. This marked a first for him, seeing the completely undone version of normally oh-so-in-control Caitlyn Miller. The effect was like a sucker punch to his gut as he mulled it all over in his head. Guilt overwhelmed him as he thought about how she’d told him Haigler was off limits. He’d disregarded her directive, pushing back hard until he got his way. Now he’d seen firsthand how unnerved she had become just by being in the same room with the guy. He remembered the look in the man’s eyes as he drank in the sight of Caitlyn, and it didn’t line up with that of a mere acquaintance or even a former lover. He had studied her with what Nick thought could only be described as obsessive hunger. Nick regretted ever going after the account now. He tightened his grip on her shoulders and stroked her hair as he let her indulge in a good cry. But after a few minutes, he picked her up and sat back down, settling her on his lap.
Caitlyn paused to catch her breath, then looked apologetically at him. “I’m sorry, Nick. I didn’t mean to fall apart on you. I wasn’t prepared to remember so much tonight.”
He swiped a thumb across her cheek to catch a tear. The tender motion must have sparked something inside her because, without warning she kissed him fully on the lips. He was surprised, but certainly didn’t object. She parted her lips, apparently hungry for more as she deepened the kiss. He’d spent too many hours of the last two years wondering what it would be like to watch her yield to him. Despite the fact he knew she wasn’t fully in control of her emotions, he didn’t want to let the opportunity to finally find out slip by him.
“I can help you forget,” he offered. There could be no mistaking what he meant. “But I don’t want you to regret anything tomorrow in the light of day.”
She stood and pulled at his hand. “Make me forget, Nick.”
They kissed their way down the hall toward a door he knew must lead to her bedroom. When they crossed the threshold, she kicked her shoes off and unfastened the side zipper of her dress. Nick looped his fingers under the solitary strap, then slid the material down her arm until the dress fell in a heap around her ankles. Without missing a beat, Caitlyn kicked the garment aside. She stood before him wearing a navy blue strapless bra and matching string bikini panties. He drank in the sight of her, letting his eyes roam over her body. Ripe breasts spilled over the top of her lingerie. Her ribcage narrowed to a tiny waist, and her hips flared provocatively before tapering to well-toned thighs. Her legs were surprisingly long in proportion to her torso. He became anxious to feel them wrapped around him.
He swiftly lifted her up into his arms and she instinctively enveloped him with those long limbs he’d been admiring, as if she had read his mind. He kissed her as he walked toward her bed until he felt it against his knees. He lowered her down onto the covers.

I have reserved my copy! Here are the links to pre-order yours:

http://store.secretcravingspublishing.com/index.php?main_page=book_info&cPath=4&products_id=942

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss/192-5931945-4724869?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=A%20Calculatd%20Risk%20by%20Joan%20Chandler

Happy Reading!!!

Just Walked “Into the Storm”…

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It is 1:05 a.m. and I just returned from the theater after watching the much anticipated movie, Into the Storm starring Ricard Armitage and Sarah Wayne Callies. My writing buddy, Joan Chandler, and I were checking out the times for tomorrow night (tonight) and stumbled upon the fact that it was playing tonight. It started at 10:30, and we were finding out about it at 10:00! We didn’t have to think long about it, even though we were both dressed for bed. Talk about quick change artists! We dressed in record time and made it to the theater in time for the previews. (BTW…you may have heard my husband say “WHAT????” when I walked upstairs and told him Joan and I were venturing out to go see a movie at 10:30 on a school night! He is a firm believer in getting plenty of rest. I have to face 18 third graders in a few hours for our 2nd day of school! Of course he was cool with it, just surprised, though nothing should surprise him anymore when it comes to the things Joan and I decide to do on a whim.)

I don’t want to say anything about the details of the movie, because I think you need to go in with a clean slate to experience it. I would croak if I inadvertedly gave something away. I’ll just tell you it grabbed me and I was along for the ride to the last moment. I held my breath, literally found myself biting my knuckle, and had my feet up on tiptoes all through the film. Mr. Armitage did a great job in his role as vice principal of a high school( none of the vice principals I know come close to looking as good in a typical khaki teacher suit!). As a teacher, and spouse of a high school teacher, I can tell you he nailed the “take cover” directions , right down to the tone of voice. I thought the acting was good for everyone. I was especially impressed with the performances of the younger members of the cast. They delivered their lines and gave very believable performances. I never thought once to say “Bless their hearts.” as we southerners are apt to do when people are trying, but not quite making it!

Well, it is now even later than it was when I started, so I guess I owe my students a clear mind when they arrive. I loved the movie and didn’t want to miss a moment. I hope you enjoy it as much as Joan and I did. Guess I might go check out khaki suits for my significant other. I’ve always discouraged that purchase in the past, but after seeing Richard Armitage wear one all through a major storm, it certainly proved to be quite durable, and maybe a worthy purchase. I wonder if I blast my husband with the hose it will have the same effect on me??? Have a wonderful weekend and enjoy the movie. It was worth the long wait we Armitage fans have endured. Now, to mark off the days for the third installment of The Hobbit movies…..

The Romance Reviews “Sizzling Summer Reads” Event is On!!!

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The Romance Reviews (TRR) is having a Sizzling Summer Reads (SSR) Beach Party from June 1st through June 30th. Hundreds of great summer reads will be made available to you with the click of a button. Forget dressing to go to the bookstore or library for a new read. You may shop leisurely from anywhere you have internet access. There will be games, more than 200 prizes, book giveaways, author Q & A’s, and books, books, books!! The Grand Prize will be a $100 gift card! All you have to do to participate is to register and be logged in at TRR (The Romance Reviews)before you can play the game. This is FREE! Mark your calendars for June 1st and check in daily to see what is new. There will be books to suit every taste in the romance genre, so everyone will be a happy customer.

Summertime usually brings with it a bit more “downtime” than any other season. Vacations aren’t complete without a few new books to take along on your journey. Click here at http://www.theromancereviews.com to access the link to The Romance Reviews site. You’ll be glad you did, and find yourself coming back to check out the newest releases and latest reviews. Oh, by the way…I will be doing a book giveaway of Love Beyond the Curve. Happy Reading!

***HINT TO 1st Q & A GAME QUESTION ABOUT MY BOOK, LOVE BEYOND THE CURVE: This hospital specializes in treating pediatric patients with cancer.
***HINT TO 2nd Q & A GAME QUESTION ABOUT MY BOOK, LOVE BEYOND THE CURVE: When one performs this dance in a costume, a chain of gold coins is worn around the waist.

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TRR….SSR….???

What do these letters mean, and how do they relate to you? Here’s your answer…

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The Romance Reviews (TRR) is having a Sizzling Summer Reads (SSR) Beach Party from June 1st through June 30th. Hundreds of great summer reads will be made available to you with the click of a button. Forget dressing to go to the bookstore or library for a new read. You may shop leisurely from anywhere you have internet access. There will be games, more than 200 prizes, book giveaways, author Q & A’s, and books, books, books!! The Grand Prize will be a $100 gift card! Mark your calendars for June 1st and check in daily to see what is new. There will be books to suit every taste in the romance genre, so everyone will be a happy customer.

Summertime usually brings with it a bit more “downtime” than any other season. Vacations aren’t complete without a few new books to take along on your journey. Click here at http://www.theromancereviews.com to access the link to The Romance Reviews site. You’ll be glad you did, and find yourself coming back to check out the newest releases and latest reviews. Happy Reading!

***HINT TO Q & A GAME QUESTION ABOUT MY BOOK, LOVE BEYOND THE CURVE: This hospital specializes in pediatric patients with cancer.

Happy Mardi Gras 2014!

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Today is Fat Tuesday! You know after today, Lent begins. Never practiced it before, as it is not part of my particular faith, but think I may this year. It’s about giving up something that would be a sacrifice. See, if I said no dark chocolate for Lent, that wouldn’t be acceptable because I don’t like it anyway. Saying no sweets would be more in line because I don’t let a day go by without something sweet. I would be putting myself to the test with this one. Actually, I could last longer being placed on “The Rack”, the medieval torture device of choice, than I probably can going without processed sugar. We shall see. This will also help me meet my goal of losing 10 pounds in the “Scale Back Alabama” challenge. I have to weigh in with my team on April 4th. Can’t let down my teammates. My husband, also a teammate, has apparently gotten confused. He asked if it wasn’t “Spring Forward” because he seems to be complying with that set of rules. I have a new piece of fitness equipment…a mini trampoline with a handlebar. I envision myself becoming one of those women going cowboy wild on the video that’s been on Facebook recently. It is fun and a real workout, but I can only last about as long as the Pitbull song, “Timber”. I will keep you posted. Maybe I will work harder making all of this public knowledge. I do recommend that song for a good dance workout!! Check it out below (hope it works). Have a great day!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hHUbLv4ThOo

 

Seismotherium

Seismotherium

Move over Smaug….there’s a new guy in town.

Here is one of my son’s latest creations. I meant to post it on his blog, “Monsters and Beasts”. Oops! I must say he is really good at this. I think he should design for the company. Of course, that’s Mom talking! :)

Thankful Thoughts…

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It’s been a long time since I last made an entry on this site…too long.  Joan Chandler had herself almost four months of publicity for her latest book, Bama Bride, as it was my last entry before I went off the grid.  No, I didn’t spend the last four months at a weight loss boot camp, though I certainly would have benefitted from such an adventure.  I finally changed the background on my computer this morning.  It had the quote, “A year from now, you’ll wish you had started today.”   Well, yes, I will, but I just keep pushing back “today”, so I changed it to another inspiring background, a picture of Richard Armitage from the Esquire UK photo shoot. Now that, my friends, is truly inspirational, yet I don’t think weight loss is what it inspires in me.

This year has been one of the most difficult of my life.  It rivals twenty years ago when I was at death’s door with pancreatitus.  It rivals those months after giving birth to my incredible son when I fought post partum depression (having a baby at 40 when you are a person with very rigid routines can be overwhelming).  Yet, in spite of it all, I recognize I have MUCH to be thankful for today.  Here are a few of those things, not necessarily in any order of importance (sorry, but the list is more for me than you):

  • My husband is madly in love with me, and thinks I am “so beautiful” (now I will NEVER add my picture to this site!)
  • My son is healthy, smart, kind-hearted, and has a sense of humor that he thinks will have him being “the last comic standing”
  • My father is beating the odds and mystifying his doctors by still being alive when given only months to live after being diagnosed with mesotheilioma over a year ago.  He is not bed-ridden, uses oxygen only as needed, and walks around the yard picking satsumas and lemons off trees he planted years ago.  He will be at our Thanksgiving dinner this evening and not “on the hill by the pond” at a local cemetery.  (This does kind of rank at the top of the list this year!)
  • I have a family that loves each other ( even if we don’t always agree with each other’s choices/opinions )
  • I have close friends I can be my true self with – one that I work with, and one that was my college roommate.  They’ve seen me through the good, bad, and the ugly and have made me laugh through it all, and I mean laugh until you cry kind of laughing!
  • I have found joy in writing, and best of all, there are people that seem to enjoy reading what I write.  That humbles me like nothing else.

This year has been difficult for multiple reasons, but the most challenging of the difficulties has been centered around family issues (Thankfully, not concerning my husband and child.).  It has been over a year since I have been able to write anything.  Writing had become my outlet when needing an escape, but during this time, the words wouldn’t come.  During the last month, a seed of an idea has been planted in my brain, and it hasn’t withered yet.  I am going to move forward with this idea, and hopefully it will grow and flourish, becoming a new story that can provide an escape for those that have honored me with their interest in my work.  Maybe today will be that “today” that I start a new book, and another year won’t go by without something to show for my love of writing.

I hope that each of you find a moment to think of the things you are thankful for today.  When I was a child, I belonged to a girls’ group at my church, and the scripture verse we quoted weekly was Philippians 4:8 (KJV).  It spoke of thinking on things that are true, just, good, honest, lovely, and of good report.  I believe I am going to begin dwelling on such things, even in the face of adversity.  I’ve felt that during the last four months I have “dropped my basket” (YA-YA Sisterhood term).  I felt tired of fighting things I really had no control over, and let a sense of hopelessness settle over me until I had unknowingly wrapped it snugly around me like a hooded cloak.  I have hidden inside that cloak of hopelessness for far too long.  I’ve let myself go for far too long.  I haven’t taken care of myself like I should, and it will be my husband and child that suffer if I don’t turn my ship around now.  I’ve tried to always be positive and encourage others to be positive.  Now, I guess it is time to pick up my basket and start filling it with those things that are “good, pure, honest, lovely, and of good report” because they do exist, I just haven’t looked very hard for them lately.  I’ve been living  Scarlett O’Hara‘s philosophy of “Tomorrow is another day.”  It’s time to start living and doing things that count TODAY.  I can never get these hours back.  I’ve wasted too many precious days already.  I’m glad we had this time together.  You have helped me more than you know.  I hadn’t planned on any of this chatter, but I seem to have convinced myself to move beyond hopelessness and see all the many bright paths that are open for me to follow.   I will just have do what the song says from the Christmas children’s TV special Santa Claus is Coming to Town, and that is “Just put one foot in front of the other, and soon you’ll be walking out the door!”    HAPPY  THANKSGIVING  EVERYONE!!

Ladies, here’s a little something “lovely” to think about…

untitled.png2You know I had to do it! :)