Cold Pressed Murder Features to Die for Olive Oil Recipes!

I loved writing COLD PRESSED MURDER, the second book in Berkely Prime Crime’s OLIVE GROVE MYSTERY series, following ONE FOOT IN THE GROVE. One of the elements I’m most excited about in this second cozy mystery is the recipe section at the end of the book. Each recipe featuring olive oil is taken directly from the pages of the story. And one of my all-time, most favorite recipes was developed just for this story!

Precious Darling’s Famous Cold-Pressed Olive Oil Peach Cake is to die for. It’s dense, super-moist and sweet—but not too sweet. And it’s deliciously satisfying, especially when topped with fresh fruit.
Cold Pressed Murder II. Recipe

Happily, when I developed and tested the recipe, it was during peach season here in Virginia. So once I nailed the recipe down, I baked one final version, sliced myself a fat piece of warm cake, and slathered that puppy with fresh peaches and freshly prepared whipped cream. Not normally a cake person, I was on cloud nine devouring the fruits of my labors! Moreover, the cake tasted absolutely scrumptious the next morning when I had a piece for breakfast, topped with a medley of fresh fruit and yogurt.

Needless to say, my olive oil cake didn’t last long.

<grin>

Olive Oil Improves My Old Recipes

Much to my surprise, developing olive oil recipes for my books has totally changed the way I cook, as well as the choices I make when choosing foods to eat. Moreover, I’ve enjoyed the challenge of tinkering with old family recipes and using olive oils instead of other fats when preparing meals. Many of my old family recipes are much improved after making my olive oil tweaks. And, yes, I’ve proven that one can make a delicious flaky tart or piecrust using a mild olive oil instead of butter!

And, using olive oils in both sweet and savory dishes has led me to appreciate the subtleties and differences between unique olive oil varieties and blends. Like wine, not all olive oils are the same. Not even remotely so.

For example, the olive oil that I’d use in a savory dish would not be the same oil that I’d add to a mild dish or sweet dessert. A more green, robust olive oil, like the Koroneiki variety that is high in polyphenols—the healthy, natural chemicals that give you that peppery burn in the back of your throat—pairs well with soups, salads and grilled meats. Whereas, a more delicate, mild, fruity or buttery flavored oil with little or no bitterness, like the Arbequina variety, is better suited for chicken, pasta, vegetables and even sweet dishes.

Can’t Get Enough Olive Oil Ice Cream

One use for olive oil that’s really surprised and delighted me has been in frozen desserts. Before the OLIVE GROVE MYSTERY series, I’d never tried olive oil ice cream or gelato. And although I understand it’s a common ice cream flavor in Italy, olive oil ice cream is not readily available in my rural community. And even if I’d discovered it here, I doubt that I’d have tasted it without some compelling reason … like, authoring a culinary cozy series about olive oil! I mean, really , olive oil and ice cream? The combination sounded odd to me, to say the least!

So last year when I purchased an ice cream maker and began experimenting, making dozens of olive oil ice creams and gelatos (poor me, all that experimental ice cream—someone had to eat it!), it was my first time tasting the heavenly stuff. And it just dilled my pickle, as they say!

Now that I’ve come up with several of my favorite frozen olive oil treats—like Ambrosia Curry’s Boozy Peach-Bourbon Ice Cream, featured in COLD PRESSED MURDER—I actually prefer the olive oil ice creams and gelatos to many frozen desserts made straight with dairy ingredients. The olive oil imbues a subtle fruitiness that that’s wonderfully unique and satiating. Before my dive into olive oil, I never knew that I could crave such a delicate, distinctive flavor. And now, I can’t get enough!

I hope you enjoy finding new ways to use olive oil in your recipes as much as I do!

COLD PRESSED MURDER by Kelly Lane

Olive Grove mystery

Cold Pressed Murder

Eva Knox and her quirky Southern family are back in the second in the “intriguing”* culinary mystery series.

It’s the pits for the attendees of the annual Farm Family Fare in Abundance, Georgia, when olive oil farmer Eva Knox finds herself in the middle of a murder case…

Eva and the residents of Knox Plantation are oozing with excitement over the activities planned for the Farm Family Fare. The weekend event consists of two days of tours, exhibitions, music, tastings, and, most important, cooking demonstrations with celebrity chefs from the Chow Network. The enthusiasm, however, begins to dribble away after one of the star chefs goes missing—and is later found dead in the back of a refrigerated truck.

The scandal gets messier after the police discover that Eva’s sister Daphne spent the night with the victim right before he died, making her the prime suspect for his murder. It’s up to Eva, with the help of her other sister, Pep, and her best friend, Precious, to track down the real killer before Daphne finds herself squeezed into handcuffs…

INCLUDES RECIPES!

Mystery Culinary [Berkley Prime Crime, On Sale: March 7, 2017, Mass Market Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9780425277232 / eISBN: 9780698180048]

About Kelly Lane

Kelly Lane

Kelly Lane lives on a farm near Charlottesville, Virginia. In addition to her work as editor and “slush pile reader” for a prominent literary agent, she has penned as a copywriter, journalist, and worked as a business writer, editor, and public relations consultant for Fortune 500 companies. Set on an olive plantation in Southern Georgia, ONE FOOT IN THE GROVE and COLD PRESSED MURDER are the first two books in Kelly Lane’s OLIVE GROVE MYSTERY series published by Berkley Prime Crime. Each book includes original recipes inspired by dishes in the story.

Olive Grove

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM

Elizabeth Heiter introduces her FBI Profiler Evelyn Baine

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The heroine of my Profiler series, Evelyn Baine, is kind of a badass. Not in the walks-with-swagger, carries-a-big-gun and takes-no-prisoners kind of way you might expect, but in a quiet, ultra-observant way. The FBI authorizes her to carry a badge and a gun on her hip, but she rarely uses them. Most of the time, it’s her intellect that has law enforcement officers across the country asking for her help.

She’s a profiler for the Bureau’s elite Behavioral Analysis Unit, which means that instead of leading an investigation and chasing suspects, she travels to a much scarier place: into their minds. It’s her job to figure out not just what kind of person committed the crime she’s been called to profile, but also how police can find him and what he’ll do next.

Throughout the course of my Profiler series, Evelyn’s ability to predict the next moves of serial killers, child abductors, terrorists and kidnappers has put her into their paths. Along the way, I’ve gotten to show some of her physical strength, too, but also how she outwits criminals into underestimating her. Regardless of her tiny, 5’2” frame, she’s still got FBI tactical training and more than her fair share of determination!

And like many badass women, she’s also snagged herself a pretty badass man. In the first book of the series, Hostage Rescue Team agent Kyle “Mac” McKenzie is just a colleague – albeit a persistent, flirtatious one. But by the latest book, they’re dating and it’s changed her workaholic perspective on life. When her boss calls, interrupting a romantic dinner with a new case, Evelyn thinks:

Six months ago, she’d been his go-to agent for urgent cases, because she didn’t mind the late-night calls. Hell, she lived for the job.

But right now? With Kyle McKenzie’s deep blue eyes staring back at her? “This better be good…”

And as she discovers when she picks up that call from her boss in STALKED, it may be Evelyn’s most challenging case yet: a teenage girl who’s disappeared, leaving behind a note foretelling her own death.

To find out more about the series, visit www.elizabethheiter.com and for a chance to win a signed copy of STALKED, you can enter the Fresh Fiction contest.

Linda Wiken cooks up the perfect murder in ‘Roux the Day’

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Ask me how much fun it is to kill people and to eat fab food! But believe me, it is not for the feint of heart. We can all handle the murder part because what’s a cozy mystery without some (off screen) bloodshed? But writing a culinary mystery adds another ingredient – food stress.

Believe me.

It’s great fun plotting a new book. By the time I started this second one in the Dinner Club Mysteries, ROUX THE DAY, the characters were my old friends. The task is finding ways to make sure readers feel that way too, while knowing these characters must face challenges that will in some way change them or the way they look at the world. Without losing the friendship of readers.

The setting, Half Moon Bay, a quaint village-like community in Burlington, VT remains the same for each book. Although this time the body is found at a fundraising Casino Boat event, miles from shore, cruising on Champlain Lake. The victim is TV personality Miranda Myers and her co-emcee, Connor Mac, shares a past and an argument with her. Now he’s disappeared and tops the suspect list, with J.J. a close second. It’s up to J.J. and fellow foodies, the Culinary Capers Dinner Club, to find him, and the real killer.

Nothing goes better with a mystery than a touch of romance and I find that Private Investigator Ty Devine is just the guy to provide it. The friction between Ty and J.J. is as much attraction as contrariness. Of course, other characters need some of this, too…so stay tuned.

Now, back to that other ingredient. Unless the writer of culinary mysteries possesses a high metabolism, weight gain is assured. How could it not be, with all those tempting cookbooks filled with enticing photos; those recipes that need to be tested and which appear at the end of each book; and, don’t forget the occasional snacking while thinking up food descriptions.

Yum.

For an added treat, the cookbook chosen by the Culinary Capers Dinner Club in ROUX THE DAY is the MYSTERY WRITERS OF AMERICA COOKBOOK. And, three of the recipes – from Sara Paretsky, Lisa King, and Cathy Pickens — are reprinted, with permission, at the back of ROUX THE DAY.

So, grab your favorite comfort food and curl up with ROUX THE DAY. Food and a mystery – an unbeatable recipe for pleasure.

Exclusive excerpt from THE BILLIONAIRE TAKES ALL by J.S. Scott

TheBillionairesTakesAllPR

“Don’t even think about it,” Julian warned as he leaned back on the plush seat of their limousine.

“Think about what?” Kristin asked angrily.

“If you jump from a moving vehicle, you’ll more than likely end up breaking your neck, and that would be a shame. You’d miss Vegas and the wedding.”
It irritated her that he not only had known exactly what she was contemplating, but had quickly come to the same conclusion as her. There was no way she was taking a swan dive from a moving vehicle.

She’d been so shocked by his outrageous behavior that she hadn’t been able to speak until now, even though they’d been riding for several minutes. How he’d gotten the fancy limo down a closed street, she didn’t know. But Kristin was fairly certain it had a lot to do with the chief of police being Julian’s cousin, Dante. The old chief had retired just a few months ago, and Dante Sinclair had taken the promotion when it was offered to him.

Kristin shot Julian a furious glare. Even though it was already getting dark, the vehicle had lights in the passenger area. As far as Kristin could tell, the fancy car had everything, any luxury a person could ever want. Hell, she could throw a damn party in the back of the limo if she wanted. Unfortunately, parties were the last thing on her mind.

As she stared at the man across from her, it was impossible not to notice how Julian was sprawled across the seat, looking like he hadn’t just kidnapped a woman from her father’s bar, and like there was nothing he couldn’t do if he wanted to do it. He seemed to exude some kind of alpha-male pheromones that made her uncomfortable. Sure, he was handsome. He was, after all, a superstar. But there was something about the way Julian seemed comfortable in his own skin that rattled the hell out of her.

Unless he was performing, she highly doubted he gave a damn how he looked. But even dressed carelessly in a pair of jeans that had obviously seen some wear, and topped with a light-blue fisherman’s sweater, he still wore those clothes confidently. If she was being completely honest, casual was a good look on him. If she added his frequently spiking blond hair that made him look like he had just rolled out of bed—but in a sexy, totally unfair, hot kind of way—and his expressive blue eyes, she didn’t doubt that women all over the world wanted to be the one to catch his attention.

Tearing her eyes away from the tempting sight of his big body lounging casually on the seat, she asked, “Why do you care if I jump out of the car? I haven’t even figured out why you’re here.”

“I told you why I’m here. Mara said she couldn’t persuade you to come, so I decided to swing by and pick you up.” He paused before adding, “Turns out I had to pick you up literally.”

“You didn’t pick me up. You kidnapped me,” she accused, still feeling like everything that was happening was surreal. “And you left my parents’ livelihood in the hands of a man in loud shorts and flip-flops.”

“Carl thinks they’re sexy. He likes to impress the ladies. I don’t think you saw his ‘signature shake,’ but customers seem to love it. And in all fairness, I did tell him we were going to the coast. He just didn’t realize which one until he and Sandie got into the jet.”

Kristin crossed her arms over her breasts and shot Julian a stubborn look. “He’s married. He shouldn’t care about the ladies.”

“He doesn’t mess around. He just likes to attract attention. He’s actually the best bartender in the country. By the time we get back, he’ll have increased your parents’ business tenfold. Between Sandie’s culinary skills and Carl’s bartending expertise, you’ll have a line waiting to get into Shamrock’s. Look, Sandie and Carl are friends. They’re doing me a big favor. Can’t you just let go of your pride and admit you wanted to go to the wedding? You look exhausted.”

Julian lifted a brow in question. “Maybe I wanted you to be at the wedding. Maybe I didn’t want to be the only guy present without a date. Maybe I never forgot how it felt to kiss those adorable, pouty lips of yours, or the chemistry between us.” He hesitated for a few seconds before adding, “After I had a taste, you had to know I’d be back for more.”

Kristin opened her mouth and then closed it again, letting what he said sink in.

“It was just a kiss. It was nothing.”

Sweet baby Jesus! Did he really need to mention that day in the bar—not so long ago—when he’d had her moaning for more as he claimed her with an embrace she’d certainly never forgotten?

The car seemed to be getting warmer and warmer as she recalled exactly how she’d felt that day.

Desperate.
Wanting.
Free . . . if only for a moment in time.

A sigh escaped her lips unchecked, and she chastised herself as Julian searched her face, as though he was looking for something she couldn’t quite put her finger on.

“It wasn’t nothing,” Julian replied huskily. “It was something.”

Cindi Madsen | Fangirl Fun

In my book, OPERATION PROM DATE, Kate is a huge fangirl and often talks about all the fictional couples she ships (the couples who she really, REALLY wants to be in a relationship, in case you’re new to the term shipping. It baffles my husband when my daughter and I start having conversations about our fandoms). Kate and I have that in common. Whether it’s Olicity on Arrow, Stydia on Teen Wolf, or Captain Swan on Once Upon a Time, Kate gets rather involved with what’s going on with her favorite couples. (I’ve also been known to scream “KISS ALREADY” at my TV shows and books. You know, like a calm, normal person. LOL)

Cooper, the guy who’s made a deal to help Kate land her crush in time for prom (AKA “Operation Prom Date”) doesn’t know what half of her fangirl jargon means, but he loves how passionate she is about it. He loves having her as his temporary rowing partner as part of their deal, too, because it means lots of time with just him and Kate in his rowboat on the lake. What he doesn’t love is how jealous he is when all of his help starts working a little too well. And the deeper they get into the mission, the more Kate’s starting to wonder if she’s set her sights on the wrong target.

After I turn in a book, you’ll find me binge watching the newest seasons of the Originals, Arrow, Teen Wolf, the 100, and my very favorite to re-watch when I need some cheering up, New Girl. (I could go on and on) Then there are the countless book series I read as quickly as possible, hoping and encouraging the right people to finally get together. I’ve only switched teams a few times in my life, once during book two of the Hunger Games Series, CATCHING FIRE (I mean how could you not love Peeta by then? It’s not possible). And to be honest, sometimes I find myself falling a little hard for the heroes myself. For example, I kind of ship myself and Captain Hook from Once Upon a Time, the one show where guyliner + Irish accent + hook = BE MINE NOW! Even my daughters argue that they should be with Hook, because after all, I’m already married. (Love you, honey!) For the record, my awesome husband, who is perfectly fine with all my fictional boyfriends is the guy I crush on the hardest. <3

Swan

So who else loves fangirling over TV & book series? Which ones are you obsessed with, and what couples are you dying to get together & STAY TOGETHER?

(Seriously, writers. I know you & I share a career, but don’t mess with my couples. LOL)

OPERATION PROM DATE by Cindi Madsen

Operation Prom Date

Kate ships tons of fictional couples, but IRL her OTP is her and Mick, the hot quarterback she’s crushed on since, like, forever. With only one semester left of senior year, it’s now or never if she wants to land him in time for prom. Since she’s flirtationally challenged, she enlists Cooper Callihan, the guy who turned popular seemingly overnight but who used to be a good friend.

Cooper lives and breathes rowing, but his partner just broke his wrist. When he remembers Kate’s good with a set of oars, he strikes a deal: help him train, and he’ll make sure her crush notices her. Only he didn’t know how addicting spending time with her would be. Or how the more successful the Operation is, the more jealousy he experiences.

The mission has been set. The troops have their marching orders. But what if the target is the wrong guy all along?

Young Adult [Entangled Crush, On Sale: March 6, 2017, Hardcover / e-Book, ISBN: 9781682814482 / ]

About Cindi Madsen

Cindi Madsen

Cindi Madsen sits at her computer every chance she gets, plotting revising, and falling in love with her characters. Sometimes it makes her a crazy person. Without it, she’d be even crazier. She has way too many shoes, but can always find a reason to buy a new pretty pair, especially if they’re sparkly, colorful, or super tall. She loves music, dancing, and wishes summer lasted all year long. She lives in Colorado (where summer is most definitely NOT all year long) with her husband and three children.

Accidentally in Love | Hope Springs, WY | Taking Shots

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | GOODREADS

Gail Ingis | Me, An Author?

Writing fiction fell upon me through my own devices of dreams and things. After some research online where I found the affair of my 19th century, barely out of her teen years debutante, I thought, I must write this story of love, disappointment and murder.

I know, I said to myself, I’ll write a book. After all, I had written a chapter for a history book and been wooed by a publisher. I wrote up school catalogs, wrote course curriculum, wrote up interior design and architectural history lectures, proposals for jobs, poetry and love letters. Surely writing a book would be a piece . . .

Gail . . .

Read more here

INDIGO SKY by Gail Ingis

Indigo Sky

In a whirlwind romance, a lovely New York socialite marries a fêted, debonair author. But beneath the charm is a cheating husband addicted to hasheesh. Her dream marriage turns sour and the simplicity of her life runs amok when a handsome stranger, her husband’s business partner, threatens her staunch loyalty to her wayward husband.

When she faces the ugly truth about her marriage, her need to finalize her divorce sends her on mad chase across the wilds of nineteenth century America with a handsome stranger where she learns the hard lessons of murder, kidnapping, and more, that almost destroy her.

Romance Historical [Soul Mate Publishing, On Sale: October 21, 2015, e-Book, / ]

About Gail Ingis

Gail Ingis writes historical romance, loves history and romance of course, has taught history, and her weekly blog frequently covers historical content. A native of Brooklyn, New York, Ingis’s early days began and ended with writing, drawing and music. Her inspiration to write came from books gifted to her by an aunt. But life had other ideas.

After graduating from the New York School of Interior Design with a BFA in Interior Architecture and Design and masters’ studies in Architecture and Design Criticism at The New School (Parsons). Her career in interior design and architecture led her to the other arts. Ingis founded the Interior Design Institute, a school of interior design, that she eventually sold, but during her tenure, she was twice asked by publishers to write a textbook, her efforts were thwarted by a heavy schedule.

Ingis resides in Connecticut with her scientist-writer husband. She and her husband travel and enjoy tennis. Currently, she sits on the Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum Board of Trustees and serves as Curator of Art for exhibitions at the museum.

She is a member of the CTRWA—Connecticut Chapter of Romance Writer’s of America.

Website | Gail’s Artist Facebook | Twitter | Facebook | Blog

The Bewitching Power of Magical Romances

For a lot of people, magic equals witches. While that might be a common assumption, magic and magical beings encompass more than just the witchy world. There are a phenomenal assortment of magical romances featuring complex witch and warlock characters, but there also a lot of extraordinary romances with many other varieties of magic users and abusers. Magic takes many forms and I love the variety that so many authors offer.

Alt bewitching series

The first books I read featuring witches and spellcasting were actually cozy mysteries – the Bewitching series by Madelyn Alt and the Ophelia and Abby series by Shirley Damsgaard. These mysteries intrigued me because the female characters were realistic, everyday people with run-of-the-mill jobs like that of shopkeeper and librarian, but they experienced the thrills and chills that magic brings. Since I’m a romance fan, I naturally started looking for some of the same fun witchy stories but with a bit more romance in the mix. Linda Wisdom’s Hex series is just as entertaining and lighthearted as her colorful covers would suggest. In addition to the tightknit coven of witches, Wisdom throws in all kinds of were-creatures, vampires, and finally – the devilishly mischievous, but fiercely loyal, magical bunny slippers Fluff and Puff. Saranna DeWylde’s 10 Days series has just as much humor as Linda Wisdom’s series, but with a smidge more action, world-building, and darker villains.

HOW TO LOSE A DEMON IN 10 DAYS by Saranna DeWylde

10 Days #1

How to Lose a Demon in 10 Days

GOT DEMON?

Grace does. She’s got more demon than she can saddle. In fact, she’s got a sinfully sexy Crown Prince of Hell named Caspian. She’s also got ten days to get rid of him or Bad Things shall ensue. See, her Russian mobster ex-boyfriend didn’t take kindly to her smutty Mephistophelean contract. It’s not that she’s conspiring with fiends; that was his idea. It’s that she’s conspiring against him with outrageous devilry that runs the gamut from embarrassing to a dead hooker turned dominatrix demon gunning for his soul.

One should never trust demons, let alone shag them. They don’t have hearts. Yet Grace is buying hers some slightly tarnished armor and hoping that once he’s been shoveled into it, kicking and screaming, he’ll find it’s just his size. This damsel in distress needs a dark knight for a Happily Ever After.

Romance Paranormal | Fantasy Urban [Kensington Brava, On Sale: August 1, 2012, Mass Market Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9780505528674 / eISBN: 9780758279064]

My favorite book in the 10 Days series is HOW TO LOSE A DEMON IN TEN DAYS. HOW TO LOSE A DEMON IN TEN DAYS is a Faustian tale, with the bonus of a hellaciously hot Crown Prince of the underworld named Caspian. Caspian is sent to entice Grace after her man done her wrong. Strong female characters (whether they be witches or not), fascinating heroes, and unique situations make Saranna DeWylde’s 10 Days series a wonderland of witches, warlocks, and the magic they weave. Anya Bast’s Elemental Witches is a deeply sensual paranormal series with danger lurking around every corner. While I normally lean toward romances with a lighter touch, the “Elemental Witches” series is addictive for so many reasons. Anya Bast creates a kind of “magic-noir” atmosphere best illustrated in her book WITCH BLOOD. In WITCH BLOOD, the water witch heroine is haunted by her sister’s untimely death and faces danger from some shadowy unseen killer and a rogue warlock on the loose, all while debating with herself about whether she should fight the red-hot attraction to earth witch and coven leader Thomas Monahan. The magic, explosive chemistry between the hero and heroine, and the perilous attempts to catch a killer make BLOOD WITCH a must-read for romance fans who enjoy stories about magic or witches.

WITCH BLOOD by Anya Bast

Elemental Witches #2

Witch Blood

Lust burns hotter than revenge

Water witch Isabelle Novak must form an uneasy alliance with earthwitch Thomas Monahan to hunt and destroy a demon of tremendous power,even though Thomas’s very presence stirs deeper desires than she everknew she had.

Romance Paranormal | Romance Erotica Sensual [Berkley Sensation, On Sale: March 4, 2008, Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9780425220436 / eISBN: 9781101207062]

The lusty Elemental Witches prove to be as emotional and powerful as ever.

Sometimes a story isn’t centered around one particular type of magic user, but several. In THE WARRIOR VAMPIRE by Kate Baxter, Naya is a kind of Buffy the vampire slayer – except she acts as a watchdog for those who would seek to gobble up magic for their own nefarious reasons, chief among them being a lust for power. Magic is like a seductive drug in THE WARRIOR VAMPIRE and it takes a lot of inner strength to handle it without succumbing to any harmful effects. Jeaniene Frost‘s book INTO THE FIRE – the final book in her Night Prince series – takes a step away from the usual trappings of vampire vendettas and warrior-angst and has the main characters embark on a psychedelic trip through the world of magic. It’s a treat for readers to experience the illicit and fantastic world of magic, with bad boy vampire Ian as a guide. The dark side of magic in INTO THE FIRE, that balances out the Willy Wonka world-like amazing sights and sounds, is introduced through demons and cults. Demons and magic are at the heart of one of my all-time favorite paranormal erotic series – Carolyn Jewel’s My Immortal series. I often refer to the My Immortal collection as cerebral erotica, because it’s take-your-breath-away-sexy, but the stories also take a turn toward the unexpected and have a philosophical bent. When I first read MY WICKED ENEMY, I was instantly captivated by the world of witches, mages, and warlords. In Carolyn Jewel’s world, males and females are relatively equal – sexually, magically, and in their ability to fight or be enslaved. There is a zing and jolt of electricity as the major players in this series dodge enemies and find themselves seduced – whether by a lover, magic, or both. The My Immortal series may not be for everyone, but because of the way it is so different from every other series I’ve read, I highly recommend giving these books a chance.

MY DEMON WARLORD by Carolyn Jewel

My Immortals #7

My Demon Warlord

A Demon Warlord Bound by Dark Magic to the Powerful Witch He’s Desired for Years.

Kynan Aijan’s centuries-long enslavement to a mage left him borderline insane and bound to Maddy Winters, a witch he intended to kill in horrible ways. Though he’s sworn the bonds they share will never be completed, their very existence feeds his desire for her even as he accepts that Winters will never forgive him.

For Maddy Winters, the fight against evil magic users always takes top priority. But her bonds to Kynan give her intimate access to his thoughts and experiences, and she can’t always ignore their chemistry. Her insistence that she has no feelings for him is a deception she can’t afford to give up.

As Kynan and Maddy join forces to stop a rebellious and murderous witch, the dark magic that binds them locks them into forbidden passions and magic that could destroy them both. Will their fight for what’s right lead to a fight for each other?

My Demon Warlord is the seventh installment in the My Immortals series of paranormal romance novels. If you like magical supernatural tales, explosive chemistry, and irresistible passion, then you’ll love Carolyn Jewel’s latest breathtaking romance.

Romance Erotica Sensual | Romance Paranormal [Self Published, On Sale: January 31, 2016, e-Book, ISBN: 9781937823474 / eISBN: 9781937823467]

Divine cerebral erotica!

I love books about shape-shifters like werewolves, werebears, and others. I normally avoid books about the fae because of their tendency to trick and deceive using their magical abilities, but sometimes shifters and faeries collide and the results can be truly resplendent rather than tragic. One thing I love about werewolves, or other creatures that are half human and half beast, is how primal and at peace with nature they are. One thing I’ve always disliked about faeries and elves is how cold and removed from the natural world they seem. In Jennifer Ashley’s Shifters Unbound series, and Bonnie Vanak’s Werewolves of Montana series, the magical and the natural intersect. In the “Shifters Unbound” series, magic is how the fae enslave shifters and try to subjugate a species. Magic can be a dangerous thing that Shifters need to approach with caution. In Ashley’s world, there is the often corrupted and dark magic that the fae enjoy wielding, but there is also the healing and positive magic that is rooted in love and the mate bond. In Bonnie Vanak’s Werewolves of Montana, magic is something that can create beautiful things, but can also test a person’s character. Bonnie Vanak does a great job of playing with magical creatures and enchanted or cursed items – most notably with the Shadow Lands in THE MATING SEASON, and with other enchanted locales in THE WEREWOLF COWBOY. Although I don’t typically enjoy stories about faeries or books with them as main characters, two characters in THE WEREWOLF COWBOY who piqued my interest are both fae – Jaeden is Dark Fae and Thannach is a Fae shifter.

THE MATING SEASON by Bonnie Vanak

Werewolves of Montana #6

The Mating Season

In the centuries since he became immortal, Tristan, the Silver Wizard, has awaited the return of his long lost love. Nikita was his life and his heart, and when he died as mortal fighting for the freedom of Lupines and dragons, it was with her name on his lips. Now he has found her again, and Tristan is determined to claim her and fulfill his legacy – by impregnating her with his child. He will take her to his heavenly home in Tir Na-nog to show her the passion they once shared in another life. Before they can reach there, he must protect Nikita from his enemies, and he will fight with all his power to keep her safe from all harm.

The handsome, sensual wizard who saved her life from a lethal virus and swept her off her feet is no mere werewolf like herself. He is the Silver Wizard – the ruler of all werewolves, with the power to turn them into dust. Possessive and protective, he wants to recapture the love they had 900 years ago – a love Nikita cannot recall. All she knows are dreams of his passionate lovemaking and a burning desire for his touch. If she doesn’t accompany Tristan to Tir Na-nog, her mortal body will die, for the potion that saved her life will not last. But the journey ahead is filled with danger, and it will take all their courage and everything they shared in the past to endure the darkness that awaits them both…

Romance Paranormal | Erotica Paranormal [Self Published, On Sale: April 30, 2016, e-Book, ISBN: 2940158440793 / ]

A phenomenal paranormal romance!

HOW TO TAME A BEAST IN SEVEN DAYS, the first book in the Embraced series by Kerrelyn Sparks, is an example of an author using magic to weave a story with a timeless and fairytale feel. Lord Leofric of Benwick, aka “the Beast of Benwick, and the fair maiden Luciana both have special gifts that set them apart from others. Both magical gifts are something that they were born with. I love a story that utilizes ghosts in a fun way, so I enjoyed Luciana’s frequent ghostly visitors. The snarky and amusing commentary from Luciana’s late sister adds a lot to the story. Leo’s gift is kind of a double-edged sword and is reminiscent of the King Midas legend, and the character Rogue from Marvel’s “X-Men” comics. Luciana and Leo have an electric and instant attraction that grows as they build trust, and get to know each other better. As so many classic myths and fairytales do, Kerrelyn Sparks tells a story of how magical powers come with great responsibility and some degree of sacrifice. HOW TO TAME A BEAST IN SEVEN DAYS is a classic tale of intrigue, assignations, ghosts, and true love nudged along by unseen forces.

HOW TO TAME A BEAST IN SEVEN DAYS by Kerrelyn Sparks

The Embraced #1

How To Tame A Beast in Seven Days

From the brilliant imagination of Kerrelyn Sparks comes a bold new fantasy romance series in which passion and magic collide. Behold the Embraced…

As one of the Embraced—one born with magical powers—the beautiful, innocent Luciana escaped certain death after her father hid her away on the Isle of Moon. Now, nineteen years later, her father has returned with a frightening request. He will be executed unless Luciana returns to the mainland and marries a man feared throughout the land: a terrifying brute known as the Beast.

Luciana accepts her fate and agrees to wed the Beast—Lord Leo—in order to save her father. Soon she learns that her betrothed is also one of the Embraced. With the ability to wield lightning, Leo’s immense power strikes fear into the hearts of men. . .and his mere touch can put an end to a woman’s life. But Luciana cannot deny the passion that burns between them. How can she resist the man who scorches her soul and makes her feel intoxicated with desire—even if surrendering to him could destroy them both?

Fantasy | Romance Paranormal [St. Martin’s Press, On Sale: March 7, 2017, Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9781250108210 / eISBN: 9781250108227]

Fantasy Paranormal Romance with a Fairy Tale Vibe

Magic-themed romances:

Billi Jean | Dreams or Tortured Memories

Thank you for having me over at Fresh Fiction. I’m so pleased to be here. You do such a great job of getting the word out there on new authors, new releases, and great books!

My latest release, IN HER DREAMS has a perfect release day – March 7th which is also my birthday! I couldn’t think of a better book to celebrate my special day.

IN HER DREAMS was one of my favorite stories to write. The two main characters were good people, caught in a bad situation. Warren appeared in In His Dreams, as the young Vampire possessed by an ancient serial killer/psycho! Emerald was the witch that helped save him.

Writing in the paranormal genre, and in a series, gives me a lot of opportunities to tie one story with the next. All of my books are stand alone stories, but I often let the tension, and characters, flow from one book to the next.

Warren is tough, but troubled. He’s one of those guys that doesn’t do helpless victim well. Not that he was, but with a Vampire possessing and using your body to do murder and worse, it had to feel that way.

In walks Emerald whose not only saved him, but created a kind of buffer to his torturous memories. Well, what better way to go on with life than to forget the horrible events that you’ve been forced to witness? Warren is convinced Emerald can erase his memories of Gideon’s possession… If he has to, he can always seduce her into helping. What woman could say no to her lover?

Only life doesn’t always work out the way we plan.

Warren and Emerald battle this subject of erasing his memories throughout the story but along the way, they discover something else worth fighting for – each other.

I hope you give them a chance. I hope you love Emerald as much as I did, and fall as deeply in love (or lust) with Warren. Their story opens up new avenues of trouble for the immortals in the Jade series. Hopefully, it will also bring about some changes that tip the scales in their favor.

Until then, thank you for reading! Your humble author, Billi Jean

 

IN HER DREAMS by Billi Jean

Sisterhood of Jade #12

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Warren had one way to end his misery—convince one pretty, little, stubborn witch to erase his memories.

Emerald never knew what it meant to feel safe. Not really. In her world, magic gave her power, but also held her prisoner. Now, she’s out to win her freedom for good. Until one night when she aids a friend and finds herself overwhelmingly attracted to an arrogant, bossy Vampire.

Warren thought that once he was freed from an ancient’s possession, life would fall back into place. But the memories of Gideon’s acts remained, making his life a living hell. There is only one way to end the misery. He has to convince one pretty little witch to erase his memories.

Only, to do that, Warren’s going to have to seduce her into it. But when the tables are turned, and she seduces him, can he chance erasing his memories and possibly losing her, the one bright light in all his misery, along with the rest he’s suffered?

Romance Paranormal | Erotica Paranormal [Totally Bound Publishing, On Sale: March 7, 2017, e-Book, ISBN: 9781786511294 / eISBN: 9781786511294]

About Billi Jean

Billi Jean

Billi Jean was born in California but didn’t stay put for long. She’s lived in New York, Indiana, Missouri, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Massachusetts and Vermont. She’s lived in and worked from ranches to beach-side coffee shops to the woods in western Massachusetts. Now living and working in China, she continues to write.

Billi Jean has been writing since high school when she couldn’t wait for Robert Jordon to write his Wheel of Time series faster. As an adult, she still finds herself drawn to fantasy-adventure stories, but with an erotic romance flair. Her books are extremely hot, with a focus on strong characters that are shoved into fast-paced adventures. Her unique style of incredible journeys infused with hot passion leave her fans hoping for more.

Love’s Command | Sisterhood of Jade

Twitter

Talking Cowboys with Carolyn Brown

Thank you to Sara and the whole crew at Fresh Fiction for inviting me back again. I love visiting with all y’all and I’ve got a brand new book on the market, TALK COWBOY TO ME.

My first cowboy books featured the Luckadeau cousins who originated down in the Louisiana area then migrated up to Texas. I remember well when the editor called me and told me that she not only wanted to buy my submission, LUCKY IN LOVE, but wanted to make it a series. I said, “But all of Beau’s brothers are married.” To which she replied, “He’s got lots of cousins, doesn’t he?”

That started me on a cowboy journey that I’m still enjoying today. Beau, Griffin and Slade Luckadeau were indeed cousins. After the Lucky Series, I wrote the Honky Tonk Series and although those four books were set in an old Honky Tonk in Mingus, Texas, the heroes were still Texans. And then there was the Spikes & Spurs and the Burnt Boot series featuring the O’Donnells.

So what could I say when Adele O’Donnell and Remington Luckadeau showed up on my porch with a story to tell. Oh my goodness! Getting to work with both families in a little feud over a ranch—now who could possibly turn down a story like that? So I invited them in for a glass of sweet tea and some fresh baked cinnamon rolls and we talked!

Now the old rancher who had the place up for sale deserved a gold star for being a genius. He wanted to go on one of those month long around-the-world cruises with his lady friend so he talked both Adele and Remington into moving onto the ranch. Whoever had done the best job at the end of the time would get to buy the place.

The Double Deuce was exactly the right size and near enough to Adele’s extended family without being too close. A perfect fit to raise her two daughters who were definitely ranch girls.

But it was also the right fit for Remington who had inherited the raising of his two nephews when their parents died suddenly in a car wreck. The boys were both city kids who knew nothing about ranching.

Kids can be a handful on a good day. Now throw them into a competition—and pitch in an old cow dog, Boss, a cat named Blanche, and a crazy rooster, Jerry Lee, who doesn’t know how to crow in the morning and the excitement never ends. Add a romance between two people who can’t afford to fall in love. And it really was a story worth tellin’.

So we had our sweet tea and cinnamon rolls and made an agreement. I would tell their story but they couldn’t keep any secrets or hold anything back from me. Believe me, they talked cowboy to me for days. They argued about who got the most space and who would wind up with the ranch. But when it was all said and done, it wasn’t up to me at all but the old rancher held that answer in his hands when he came home from his cruise.

Now I’d like to know what you’d do if you had to live on a ranch for a month with Remington? Feel free to drool on the cover while you think about that for a little while.

TALK COWBOY TO ME by Carolyn Brown

Lucky Cowboys #1

Talk Cowboy to Me

Carolyn Brown brings her signature southern quirkiness to this original tale of Texas love.

One cowboy. One cowgirl. One ranch.

Who will win the Double Deuce by the Fourth of July?

Adele O’Donnell knew that Double Deuce Ranch had to be hers the second she walked onto the property. Freshly divorced, she sees it as the perfect spot for her and the kids to start a new life. Remington Luckadeau was always a carefree playboy…until his suddenly orphaned nephews became his responsibility. The Double Deuce Ranch would be the perfect place to raise two boys. But some fiery woman is fighting him for it, and Remington is not sharing-no matter how the sparks fly when he and Adele are together.

Romance Contemporary [Sourcebooks Casablanca, On Sale: March 7, 2017, Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9781492637929 / eISBN: 9781492637936]

GIVEAWAY

Win your own cowboy, uh, a copy of TALK COWBOY TO ME, just tell us in the comments who your favorite Texan cowboy is! Real or film or imaginary!

About Carolyn Brown

Carolyn Brown

Carolyn Brown is a New York Times and USA Today best selling author and a RITA Finalist who has sold more than 2.75 million books. She presently writes both women’s fiction and cowboy romance. She has also written historical single title, historical series, contemporary single title, and contemporary series.

She credits her eclectic family for her humor and writing ideas. She was born in Texas but grew up in southern Oklahoma where she and her husband, Charles, a retired English teacher, now make their home in the town of Davis, Oklahoma. They have three grown children and enough grandchildren to keep them young.

Spikes and Spurs | Cowboys & Brides | Luckadeau Cousins | Honky Tonk | Cadillac, Texas | Burnt Boot, Texas | Lucky Penny Ranch | Lucky Cowboys

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Meet Greer Macallister’s “Kate,” the first female detective

In every field, someone has to be the first. Often, we know their names. The first President of the United States, the first man on the moon, the first African-American to play major league baseball. But often, their names aren’t known – either because we don’t know who was the first to break a particular barrier, or because the story just hasn’t been told often enough.

The first female detective in the United States was named Kate Warne, and I wrote GIRL IN DISGUISE to tell her story.

When I first heard of Kate a few years ago, I was floored. This woman was such a pioneer. She was a female detective in the 1850s, when it was completely unheard-of, and she was so good at it that she was assigned by Allan Pinkerton to run her own division. She helped save Abraham Lincoln’s life as he made his way to his inauguration. She was an undercover spy for the Union during the Civil War. And yet, if you asked 10 people on the street who Kate Warne was, you’d be lucky to find one who knows.

It’s true, there are some good reasons why her name isn’t known. The historical record has more gaps than facts where she’s concerned. Allan Pinkerton wrote about her, but we can’t really take his word for the details, and they’re hard to verify. We have some of the case files from the early days of the Pinkerton agency, but the agency was based in Chicago, and not all of their pre-1871 records survived the Great Chicago Fire.

I was lucky enough to visit the Pinkerton collection at the Library of Congress and hold some of the agency’s early logbooks in my hands. (They let you touch them! Really!) I went through boxes and boxes of papers for anything Kate-related. And I found a handful of case files. We know she went undercover as a fortune-teller to get a confession from someone suspected of trying to poison a relative in order to get their inheritance. We know she worked on the Adams Express case, where $50,000 was stolen – a sizable sum today, and think how much more it meant then! – and helped bring the thief to justice. But we don’t have her logbooks, her diaries, or any detail on her time with the agency beyond the broad strokes that Allan Pinkerton’s books for public consumption give us.

It was Pinkerton who wrote first about the role she played in foiling the Baltimore Plot, when Southern sympathizers planned to ambush, surround and murder Abraham Lincoln as he changed trains in Baltimore on his way to be inaugurated as President. Daniel Stashower wrote a great non-fiction account of this in his 2014 book THE HOUR OF PERIL, and Kate is named along with Harry Davies, Timothy Webster, Hattie Lawton, and Allan Pinkerton himself as the key agents involved in protecting the President-Elect. Lincoln was disguised as an invalid and Kate’s role was to play his sister, accompanying him on a late-night train (scheduled ahead of the announced arrival time in order to foil the plotters) all the way to Washington. Some accounts indicate that the Pinkerton Agency motto, “We Never Sleep,” was developed in honor of Kate’s sleepless night guarding Lincoln on the train.

So this Kate Warne, the real Kate Warne, clearly did some amazing things. But I’m not a historian and I didn’t want to write a historical account. My primary goal as a historical fiction writer is to write rip-roaring good stories that keep readers turning the pages. So I began with history as a jumping-off point, and I wove story and history together to paint a fictional picture of Kate – not who she was, because we don’t know that, but who she might have been. I wrote an Author’s Note to include in the book that specifies where I’ve veered off the road from known facts.

My Kate is a version of the historical Kate. (And I do think of her as my Kate now; I’m very possessive.) But I’ve given her the personality that I think the real Kate would’ve had to have in order to do the things she did. She must have been fierce, determined, aggressive, smart, and resolute. I hope readers enjoy reading about her as much as I enjoyed writing about her. And above all else, now that you know her story, I hope you remember her name.

GIRL IN DISGUISE by Greer Macallister

Girl in Disguise

Inspired by the real story of investigator Kate Warne, this spirited novel follows the detective’s rise during one of the nation’s times of crisis, bringing to life a fiercely independent woman whose forgotten triumphs helped sway the fate of the country.

With no money and no husband, Kate Warne finds herself with few choices. The streets of 1856 Chicago offer a desperate widow mostly trouble and ruin—unless that widow has a knack for manipulation and an unusually quick mind. In a bold move that no other woman has tried, Kate convinces the legendary Allan Pinkerton to hire her as a detective.

Battling criminals and coworkers alike, Kate immerses herself in the dangerous life of an operative, winning the right to tackle some of the agency’s toughest investigations. But is the woman she’s becoming—capable of any and all lies, swapping identities like dresses—the true Kate? Or has the real disguise been the good girl she always thought she was?

Historical | Mystery Historical [Sourcebooks Landmark, On Sale: March 21, 2017, Hardcover / e-Book, ISBN: 9781492635222 / eISBN: 9781492635239]

About Greer Macallister

Greer Macallister

Raised in the Midwest, Greer Macallister is a poet, short story writer, playwright and novelist whose work has appeared in publications such as The North American Review, The Missouri Review, and The Messenger. Her plays have been performed at American University, where she earned her MFA in Creative Writing. She lives with her family in Brooklyn.

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