Eva Devon | Why I Love Epic Romance!
Author Guest / December 30, 2015

I adore romance. I always have. I started out on Pride and Prejudice but then, lucky me I found Johanna Lindsey! Woo! The door didn’t shut. I got to read about quivering loins and lots of pleasuring. Plus, the characters often felt larger than life. In the romance from the 80s the heroes were lords, dukes, highwaymen! The heroines were almost always bold and willing to give the arrogant heroes a huge set down. So, when I started writing Less Than A Lady it was absolutely due to those larger than life characters. And I wanted epic adventure, so I looked to the past. I looked to a time when women were experiencing more freedom and scandalous clothing than they ever had before! Under the reign of Charles II, aka The Merry Monarch, women saw a rise in freedom, political influence, and general expectation. Women weren’t just supposed to be breeders. They were supposed to be clever, fun, sexy, and bold. In fact, just about anything went for a few decades. How marvelous it must have been after years of repression. For the first time ever women were allowed to play women’s roles on the stage. Before, only boys played…

Julianne MacLean | Highland Holiday Traditions: Ringing in the New Year with the Fireballs of Stonehaven
Author Guest / December 30, 2015

The New Year is fast upon us. Have you made any plans to ring in 2016? Maybe you have excited youngsters who can’t wait to wave glow sticks in your city or town at a family-friendly celebration. Perhaps you have family visiting for the holidays, when the last days of December become moments to savor before returning them to the airport. Maybe your tradition involves a more casual get-together with old friends at home. Or perhaps this year is a real treat and you’ve booked a romantic dinner for two, planning to linger over a leisurely gourmet meal. Over the years, I’ve had a chance to spend December 31st in many of these ways. Yet I’ve never had the pleasure of greeting the New Year in Stonehaven, a Scottish town south of Aberdeen along the northeast coast. Something about witnessing Stonehaven’s fireballs ceremony whispers to the place inside of me where my Highlander series’ characters reside. In the early 1700s when my “>Highlander Series takes place, Highland society was a curious mix of belief systems. Though Christianity was firmly in place in the Lowlands, some Highland parishes were still trying to bring their Gaelic-speaking people to the church by translating…

Laura DiSilverio | Holiday Book Clubs Ideas
Author Guest / December 29, 2015

At this time of year, thoughts turn naturally to holiday celebrations. In addition to office parties and family gatherings, many of us book enthusiasts celebrate with our book groups. For those of you who don’t know the Readaholics, they are a book group of five women–Amy-Faye, Lola, Kerry, Brooke and Maud– who read classic mysteries in Heaven, Colorado. Lately, it seems that they’ve been solving mysteries almost as often as reading them. Their second outing is THE READAHOLICS AND THE POIROT PUZZLE and they find that Agatha Christie’s MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS helps them get on the right track when they investigate a murder at a brew pub’s grand opening (which event organizer Amy-Faye put together). So, in honor of the holidays, I’m passing along some of the Readaholics’ best ideas for celebrating the holidays with your treasured book club friends. If you read historicals, have everyone bring a cocktail from the time periods of the books you read this year (Sidecars for books set in the 1930s, Mai Tais for the 1940s, Sloe Gin Fizzes for the 1950s–you get the idea). If you read books from pre-cocktail days, mulled wine might be just the ticket. If you read…

Sierra Donovan | New Year’s Fudge
Author Guest / December 29, 2015

Christmas is over, you say? BAH! I say. Now that the shopping-and-mailing crunch is over, this is a time we relish at my house. It’s a time to sit back, relax, and enjoy the rest of the season. The house is decorated, the deadlines are over, and there are still Christmas movies and music to enjoy, all at a more leisurely pace! And, confession time: The first chance I had to bake was the day before Christmas. My daughter and I whipped up a quick batch of chocolate chip cookies, perfect for running over to the neighbors on Christmas Day. Another favorite recipe I plan on getting to this week: Fred and Lindsay’s fudge. When I was writing No Christmas Like the Present a few years ago, my heroine, Lindsay, had a beloved fudge recipe. But I didn’t. I’d never made fudge before! So, to make the cooking process more authentic, I did a little (somewhat fattening) research. I experimented with several different recipes, and when I was done, I consolidated my findings into my own favorite recipe. In the book, mysteriously, my hero’s batch of fudge turned out to be even better than Lindsay’s – despite the fact that Fred followed her instructions…

Elizabeth Heiter | Dos and Don’ts for an FBI Profiler
Author Guest / December 29, 2015

The third book in my Profiler series, SEIZED, finds my normally dedicated, workaholic FBI profiler Evelyn Baine a little lost. She recently solved the case that drove her into the FBI – the disappearance of her best friend Cassie when they were twelve years old – and now she wonders if she still has the drive to be a profiler. To make things worse, her boss is pissed at her for some of the decisions she made on her last case, so he’s punishing her with BS assignments. The most recent is the interview of an incarcerated bomb-maker in a Montana prison. So, when fellow agent Jen Martinez stops her outside the prison and asks for an unofficial profile, Evelyn sees it as a chance to determine if she still has the passion for her job. When an FBI agent you don’t know asks you to help out on an unsanctioned case: Don’t get into the car with her. But Evelyn does, and instead of handing over a case file, Jen Martinez drives her into the Montana wilderness, to see the cult she wants profiled in person. The closer they get, the more remote it becomes. Don’t head out into…

Time to curl up with a good book!
Author Spotlight / December 29, 2015

From New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Kristan Higgins Before you get down on bended knee you should be pretty darn sure the answer will be yes. For ten years, Connor O’Rourke has been waiting for Jessica Dunn to take their on-again, off-again relationship public, and he thinks the time has come. His restaurant is thriving, she’s got her dream job at Blue Heron Vineyard—it’s the perfect time to get married. When he pops the question, however, her answer is a fond but firm no. If it ain’t broke, why fix it? Jess has her hands full with her younger brother, who’s now living with her full-time, and a great career after years of waitressing. What she and Connor have is perfect: friends with an excellent benefits package. Besides, with her difficult past (and reputation), she’s positive married life isn’t for her. But this time, Connor says it’s all or nothing. If she doesn’t want to marry him, he’ll find someone who does. Easier said than done, given that he’s never loved anyone but her. And maybe Jessica isn’t quite as sure as she thinks “A heroine who believes she can only count on herself, a persistent, protective…

Laura DiSilverio | Holiday Book Clubs
Author Guest / December 28, 2015

At this time of year, thoughts turn naturally to holiday celebrations. In addition to office parties and family gatherings, many of us book enthusiasts celebrate with our book groups. For those of you who don’t know the Readaholics, they are a book group of five women–Amy-Faye, Lola, Kerry, Brooke and Maud– who read classic mysteries in Heaven, Colorado. Lately, it seems that they’ve been solving mysteries almost as often as reading them. Their second outing is THE READAHOLICS AND THE POIROT PUZZLE and they find that Agatha Christie’s MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS helps them get on the right track when they investigate a murder at a brew pub’s grand opening (which event organizer Amy-Faye put together). So, in honor of the holidays, I’m passing along some of the Readaholics’ best ideas for celebrating the holidays with your treasured book club friends. If you read historicals, have everyone bring a cocktail from the time periods of the books you read this year (Sidecars for books set in the 1930s, Mai Tais for the 1940s, Sloe Gin Fizzes for the 1950s–you get the idea). If you read books from pre-cocktail days, mulled wine might be just the ticket. If you read…

Meet Brigid Kemmerer
Interviews / December 28, 2015

Ever wonder about authors who can take you from the young adult to beginning of adulthood? Today, our Sherri Morris talked to Brigid Kemmerer about her latest novel, THICKER THAN WATER.. “THICKER THAN WATER is Brigid Kemmerer’s first book released since her Elemental series. Told in both Thomas and Charlotte’s point of views, their story begins at a slower pace but gradually escalates. Brigid Kemmerer is a new author for me so I don’t have any of her previous work to compare to. However, it has been awhile since a book has been able to suck me so far into it I just couldn’t stop reading. THICKER THAN WATER did that for me. Brigid Kemmerer’s writing style has a wonderful, captivating flow to it. She includes surprises and plot twists I did not see coming and created characters the reader can easily fall in love with. I cannot wait to get my hands on some of her other books!” from her review. You started writing in high school. What started you down this path and who influenced you during this time? I always loved reading when I was a kid, and I actually started writing even earlier than high school….

Viki Ferrell | Christmas Morning Casserole
Author Guest / December 25, 2015

Does your family have a favorite they’ve grown to love year after year? Here’s one for Christmas morning and it’s easy to make the night before. Less stress on all! Here’s another favorite holiday recipe that my family expects on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas for Breakfast. A good friend gave this recipe to me over 45 years ago, and it’s been standard fare at our house for years. ~ Viki Ferrell Sausage and Egg Breakfast Casserole 1 lb Sausage (can use Italian Sausage) 8 oz Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese 6 Large Eggs 1 pint Half n Half Salt & Pepper 6 Slices of White Bread Butter Trim crust off of the bread and layer them in a 9 x 13 baking dish. Spread a thin layer of butter over each slice. Brown the Sausage, drain and sprinkle evenly over the bread. Sprinkle the Cheese evenly over the Sausage. Beat the Eggs and Half n Half together until frothy – maybe 3 – 4 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour Egg mixture over the Sausage and Cheese. Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate over night. Bake the next morning at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Makes 12 decent sized…

Miranda Owen | A Variation on the Cherry Surprise Cookie
Author Guest / December 24, 2015

From Miranda Owen “Ok, I lost the original recipe in my great grandmother’s church cookie cookbook, but luckily found this one online a few years ago. The only difference is that when I make them – I don’t use nuts or chocolate. Just the dough and the cherries. The important thing is getting the butter soft enough. If you don’t, it won’t yield much and is a pain in the butt to make (even though I secretly suspect my aunt prefers them that way because they come out crispier). I found a rhythm after a bit – I roll into a ball, put a little flour on my one palm, use the heel of other hand as a rolling pin to roll out a bit then plop cherry in and fold dough over and roll so cherry is inside dough ball. (Also make sure cherries have been drained. Def have to wait and watch. This year, I’m thinking of adding a little drizzle of icing by taking a little of cherry “juice” from jar, melted butter (the real stuff), and powdered sugar.” (with modifications) Ingredients 1 cup butter or margarine (unsalted butter is best) 1/2 cup powdered sugar 2 cups…