Isabella Macotte at My Place

May is almost upon us, and with it hopefully more sunshine and warmer temperatures. I hope you'll enjoy spring where you are.

Today, I welcome another fabulous author, fellow Rose Isabella Macotte. Let's hear it from Isabella.



I’m Isabella Macotte, author of The Heart Gem, published by The Wild Rose Press.
I love books. My love of reading goes all the way back to my childhood. I still remember my first elementary school field trip. The whole third-grade class marched over to the public library in Chicago, and we received our first library cards. Since then, you can always find me with a new book in my hand or on my e-reader.
After working in accounting for a number of years, I’ve made my way back to the library. One of the best things about my job in a library? Spending my lunch break up in the book stacks looking for a new story to read. 



My Place:

The Heart Gem is my current release. A historical romance novel set in England, the story incorporates paranormal elements, a heroine who plans to be a businesswoman, and a sexy hero who needs to wed to leave the Fae world behind.

Friday Foto: Loch Ness

Today, I'm taking you on a visit to a dear old friend: Nessie!

Loch Ness is the most popular loch in Scotland. Perhaps not quite with the romantic reputation of Loch Lomond, but its long-standing inhabitant, Loch Ness attracts millions of visitors.

Urquhart Castle on the shore of Loch Ness

We are fortunate in that my in-laws (or outlaws, as I call them) live only a mile from Nessie Town, also known as Drumnadrochit (where you can find the Loch Ness Monster Exhibition). So we have plenty of opportunities to visit over and over again. As if we needed an excuse...

I love the atmosphere around Loch Ness. Its deep, dark waters lapping against the shore, the high-rising hills either side, it's a beautiful area. The rugged ruin of Urquhart Castle peeking out over the water is a magnet for tourists and a fabulous site to visit.


I've taken a boat out several times, always amazed by the calm, black waters. It's incredibly soothing, both from a boat and from the eastern shore which is far less frequented than the busy main route up along the west side. On a recent drive, we spotted a beautiful old graveyard and the landscape is simply breathtaking.

Jacquie Rogers at My Place

It's time to welcome another fantastic author to My Place. Please say 'hi' to the lovely Jacquie Rogers.

Handing over to Jacquie:


I'm a former software designer, campaign manager, deli clerk, and cow milker, but always a bookworm. Reading is my passion--westerns, fantasies, historicals of any era, and all with a dash of romance. If an author can make me laugh, I'll buy every book he/she ever wrote.

While I'm a country girl by birth, I currently live in suburbia with my very patient husband (important point: we are the staff of one cat) I don't think you can ever take the country out of a girl's heart. That's probably why my stories often take place in Idaho where I grew up. (Hearts of Owyhee series and some of my short stories, too.)

My Place:

I’d love to introduce you to God’s Country today.  I’ve since found out that many places on this planet are truly marvelous, but as a chilld, I was told and firmly believed that there was no better place on earth than Owyhee County, Idaho.  A dozen years later, it occurred to me that of 7 billion people, only 7,000 lived there.  Hmmm, maybe other places were better—maybe Owyhee County isn’t God’s Country after all.


Dark Deceit Trailer needs votes!

I need your help, dear friends!


Today marks the start for voting in the YGR Best Video Poll April 2012 from You Gotta Read! Voting ends 12.01am 27th April 2012.

The Dark Deceit trailer is at no. 6. Please click on it, then scroll down to submit your vote. I appreciate it. Here's the link: http://yougottaread.com/category/video-contest/

Below is the trailer again, which I'm still quite chuffed about... ;-)

Thanks a bunch, my lovely friends! xxx



Friday Foto: La Tour Marguerite

Today, I want to share an incredible building in one of my favourite towns: La Tour Marguerite in Argentan.



Back in October 2007 (that long ago, sob!), hubby and I took the car to Normandy, France, and stayed in a farm B&B on the outskirts of the pretty, old market town of Argentan. It was one of our best ever breaks, full of touristy stuff, historical visits, relaxation, walks, good food and friendly people. You can find photos of our trip on Flickr.

Argentan is first noted officially in the 11th century, and it was an important town during the day of the early Norman dukes, then the Plantagenents, and later the French. Not far from Falaise (William the Conqueror's home town), it played a strategic role. Eleanor of Aquitaine stayed for a while and talks were held here to reconcile Henry II with Thomas Becket.

Argentan is full of historic buildings - churches, houses, a donjon. Folk were very friendly, especially as we spoke in broken French rather than English. When in Rome, erm, France...

Fabulous 5* Review for Dark Deceit

I'm thrilled to share a wonderful 5* review for Dark Deceit from the lovely BlackTulip at Booked Up Reviews. She writes:

"I love Cathie Dunn's book for its captivating characters and vivid descriptions of these harsh and tumultuous times. I love it for its very well researched storyline and its crafty mix of fiction and history. The result is an engrossing read that I highly recommend."

Read the full review here!


Although Dark Deceit isn't strictly a romance, but rather a romantic historical adventure like the ones I read growing up (with equal emphasis to character development and historical background), I'm delighted that romance readers enjoy it as much as history buffs.
I'll be returning to Booked Up Reviews in June for an interview and a giveaway of both Dark Deceit and Highland Arms, so watch this space!

Dark Deceit is available on Amazon, Amazon UK & Smashwords.

My Place: Lyndi Alexander

On this sunny but chilly spring Sunday, I welcome another fabulous multi-published author to My Place: Lyndi Alexander. Welcome!

Without further ado, I'm handing over to Lyndi:

Lyndi Alexander dreamed for many years of being a spaceship captain, but settled instead for inspired excursions to fictional places with fascinating companions from her imagination that  she likes to share with others. She has been a published writer for over thirty years, including seven years as a reporter and editor at a newspaper in Homestead, Florida. Her list of publications is eclectic, from science fiction to romance to horror, from tech reporting to television reviews.  Lyndi is married to an absent-minded computer geek. Together, they have a dozen computers, seven children and a full house in northwestern  Pennsylvania.

My Place:

When I came up with my urban fantasy idea to have elves interacting with the modern world, a big city just wouldn’t do. Maybe it was my reading habits growing up, but I felt that elves belonged in the forests, like those of Tolkien’s Lothlorien. How appropriate, then, that my modern elves live in the deep forests outside the city of Missoula, Montana


Friday Foto: Glencoe

Friday 13th. Oooh, I hear you say. Nah, it's a fabulously lucky day.

So, to mark the occasion, I'm starting a new blog post series today: Friday Foto!

Every Friday, I'll post up a photo from my research pool, some of which are on Flickr, most are hidden somewhere on my MacBook. But now it's time to share them.

So here is the first, one of my favourites. Followers of my blog, and my books, might recognise it. ;-)

Glencoe


Glencoe, Scotland


Glencoe is my favourite place in Scotland. You can experience all four seasons on a trip along the valley.

Dark Deceit - now on sale!

Happy Easter!


I hope you're all enjoying a wonderful Easter weekend! Our roast is in the oven, and the house smells wonderful from the scent of the stock. I'm sure a glass of wine is waiting for me somewhere.


This Easter weekend, my publisher, Crooked Cat Publishing, are having a sale on Amazon! Whoop, whoop!

So... that means Dark Deceit, the first in The Anarchy Trilogy, is on sale throughout the bank holiday weekend. Check it out! :-)

Blurb:
On his return from battle at Lincoln, Geoffrey de Mortagne, under-sheriff of Gloucester and spy for the Empress Matilda, assists a dying knight caught in an ambush. Promising to look after the welfare of the knight’s only daughter, Geoffrey stays at her manor, investigating the murder. Keen to join the Empress on her progress through England, he is torn between his oath and his duty.

Left to defend her manor following her father’s death, Alleyne de Bellac reluctantly accepts Geoffrey’s support. As she doesn’t trust the taciturn stranger, she asks Will d’Arques, an old friend, for help. But loyalties change. Her life in danger and her inheritance at stake, Alleyne must decide which man to trust.
Discover England and Normandy divided by a brutal civil war, where vows are broken as allegiances waver.
Dark Deceit is a historical romantic novel, set in 1140s Gloucester and Normandy.

Grab your copy of this medieval adventure here:




Introducing Rose McClelland



I'm delighted to introduce a new name in womens fiction - Rose McClelland!

Today, Rose McClelland celebrates the release of her novel, The Break-Up Test, from Crooked Cat Publishing. At her home in Belfast, Rose is busy writing novels, alongside reviewing books for Judging Covers. A theatre play she wrote has also been shown in a production at a theatre in Belfast.

So, to find out more about her, I've asked her some questions. Here she goes....



1) Tell us about The Break-Up Test! What inspired you to write this story?


I was having one of those hour long conversations with my sister one night.  I was telling her that I had a set of mid-year resolutions which I had devised to massively cheer myself up. After I listed them off, she said, "that sounds like a book to me". And I said, "Oh yeah, so it does".  So I decided to go off and write it. It was a fun journey to take with the characters.

Dark Deceit - Excerpt

Oh, winter has returneth! Well, I've seen more snow flurries in the last 24 hours than the previous 4 months. However, unlike the weathermen ('the unusual weather'), I think it's pretty normal for April to get frosty again. It's April, after all. I remember several snowy Easter weekends. And snow is still preferable to rain, methinks!

Anyway...

I just shared another excerpt on the Dark Deceit FB page, so I thought I'd share it here, too. It highlights Alleyne's indecision over which of two men to trust - Geoffrey or Will.

I hope you enjoy! ;-)


Excerpt, Chapter Five:


  “I will speak with him,” she said aloud and drained her cup. Grabbing her cloak from the hook behind the door, Alleyne left her chamber.
  She rushed down the stairs, wrapping her cloak closer around her, and threaded her way through the crowd in the hall. With ale flowing freely, the noise had risen. All earlier restraints were forgotten. As she pulled the door to the bailey open, she bumped into the under-sheriff. For a moment they stood close, her hands on his chest, his on her arms. She stumbled as his eyes bore into hers.

Spring forward...

... right into a new blog design! ;-)

With a new season comes change. Positive change, of course.

After the frustrating to-ing and fro-ing with my hijacked website, I've decided to expand this blog to incorporate all the website pages, all updated. Eventually, I'll use the web addy for it, but not just yet.

So, gone is the suspenseful, dark landscape. Yes, I'll miss it too, but this new design fits my current mood. Red. Action. Power. Heat. And perhaps a sense of daring...

A brief update on my current projects - the contemporary suspense is going to be a full-length romance, so I've taken my other WIP, a Scottish medieval romance called Captured by the Knight, to turn into a novella. It's much better suited.

Saving Isobel de Moray from abduction by mercenaries, Cailean MacKinnon, a Scottish knight, takes her to his island castle. But does she believe his assurances to keep her safe, out of loyalty to her father? Or is he simply after a wife for himself?

Expect plenty of sizzling tension! ;-)

Author Barbara Edwards at My Place

Another sunny Sunday - a rarity in Scotland! With Easter just a week away, the daffodils in full bloom, the air crisp from cool nights despite the mild days, we emerge to enjoy time out again.

This Sunday, I welcome the wonderfully talented, multi-published author - and fellow 'Wild Rose' - Barbara Edwards.

Let's go on a journey to Rhodes End with Barbara:


I’m Barbara Edwards and a native New Englander. I’m a graduate of the University of Hartford with a Master’s degree in Public Administration. I write poetry for myself and novels when I need to tell a longer tale. I’m fascinated by the past so naturally turned to writing historical romance. The dark paranormal stories evolve from nightmares. The romance comes from my belief in people’s basic goodness and longing for love.