Archive for Guest Bloggers

The lovely Lily Harlem has a new release!

When I became an author at Ellora’s Cave one of the first fellow writers I met was Lily Harlem. She not only pens tons of smoking hot books, but she’s sweet as can be. It brings me great happiness to show off her latest release. If you’re looking for a way to heat up your cold winter nights, give Lily’s books a try.

 

 

Teamwork

Book four in the Hot Ice series. (Can be enjoyed as a stand alone read.)

What I know about hockey could fit on the back of a stamp. So my latest patient may be one of the NHL’s hottest defensemen, but I’m not exactly blown away by his stardom. Add in the fact that he’s a surly, growling grump, and I’m more than happy to work my magic on his battered body and then hot-foot to my date with his teammate, Todd “Pretty” Carty.

Todd is sex on a stick, a slice of man heaven and I want a bit of the action, preferably of the bedroom variety. But when Raven emerges from his bad mood and throws his energy into blowing my mind with just one kiss, I find my head spinning and my libido raging.

What I didn’t bargain on is these hard-training, hard-playing hockey players working as efficiently off the ice as on it when it comes to getting results. But who am I to complain when satisfaction is their ultimate goal?

Reader Advisory: Contains m/f/m. Go on, you know you want to indulge!

Buy here!

Read a steamy excerpt here!

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Guest Post by Margaret Ethridge! Chicago Girl Chicken Chili!

We’re sexy and we know it

I told a friend of mine that I was writing a book with a hero and heroine hovering around big 5-0, and she wrinkled her nose in distaste. Apparently ‘older people’ can’t be sexy. I pointed out that my own husband—the very same guy she once described as a hottie-hubby—is fifty-one, almost fifty-two.

She was forced to make an exception to the rule.

But who made the rule? Where did we ever get the idea that people forty aren’t sexy? Were we supposed to leave lust in the dust once after our first-annual thirty-ninth birthday? Oops. Nobody told me. I’m more comfortable with myself, my choices, and the paths my life has taken than I’ve ever been before. I also think I’m much sexier than I was in my twenties.

George Bernard Shaw said the ‘Youth is wasted on the young.’ So true. They screw love up all the time. At least, I know I did when I was their age. Looking back on my twenties and thirties, I realize how much time I wasted anticipating and not savoring.

As I grow older, I come to appreciate those things younger people find so unattractive. Laugh lines, sun spots, and crow’s feet are symbols of a life well-lived. A second, third, or even fiftieth chance to fall in love?

That’s an opportunity too precious to waste.

Spring Chickens

You don’t have to be a spring chicken to fall in love.

The residents of Heartsfield, Arkansas think Lynne Prescott has it all. The wealthy suburban divorcee captures everyone’s attention when she blows into town to dispose of the family farm. But her nosy new neighbors don’t know she ran away from home.

Bram Hatchett’s interest in buying the land adjoining his farm is yesterday’s news, but the handsome widower’s inability to contain his attraction to the land’s beautiful owner quickly becomes fodder for the local gossip mill.

A rickety old porch and a disturbing decrease in the poultry population bring them together—but with wagging tongues and grown children against them, Lynne’s inclination toward flight comes smack against Bram’s aversion to fight. Can they whittle away the secrets of the past in order to scratch out a future together?

Buy link: The Wild Rose Press

Amazon

Find Margaret on:

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GoodReads

Need something spicy to heat up the chilly fall nights? I included a fabulous recipe for chicken chili in the 2011 Wild Rose Press Garden Gourmet. Give this tasty pot of goodness a try!

Chicago Girl Chicken Chili

• 1 tbsp olive oil
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
• 1envelope McCormick Chili Seasoning
• 1can Rotel (diced tomatoes with jalapeño peppers)
• 1can chili beans (with sauce)
• 1can great northern beans (drained)
• 1cs black beans (drained)
• 32oz tomato juice

Cut chicken breasts into strips. Heat olive oil in large skillet. Add garlic and chicken strips. Sauté until chicken is cooked through. Using two forks, shred chicken into bite-sized pieces.

Add shredded chicken to Dutch oven or stock pot, season with packaged chili seasoning. Add Rotel, chili beans, great northern beans, and black beans. Stir to mix well. Add tomato juice to desired thickness.

Bring to a simmer then cook over low heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Want a free copy of the Garden Gourmet? Download yours HERE!

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Guest Post by Cheryl Norman – Breast Cancer and Comedy

Today I’d like to welcome Cheryl Norman, a fabulous fellow Turquoise Morning Press author to my blog. In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month Cheryl is here to share her personal journey with breast cancer, her book about eating for recovery and a tasty recipe. Thank you, Cheryl!

Breast Cancer and Comedy
Breast cancer is no laughing matter, but I decided to make it one. Diagnosed in April, 2010, I approached my chemotherapy, radiation, and drug treatments with humor and optimism. My father taught me that laughter is good medicine, and I greeted my treatment journey with a smile instead of tears.
Much of cancer treatment was a pleasant surprise. My chemo lasted about five months. Thanks to advances in medicine, I never got sick. Instead of wasting away, I gained weight. The only thing I lost was my hair. I finished chemo fatter than I’d ever been in my life! Could have been my constant craving for vanilla ice cream . . .
Cancer is scary, but I refused to be afraid. I asked my husband to keep me laughing, and he took my advice to heart. He bought me a collection of Abbott and Costello comedies, and we watched them instead of the nightly news. I’ve since learned there was a terrible oil spill in the Gulf during that time, but I was blissfully ignorant. We watched comedies only. No depressing or serious input allowed. Friends sent me funny cards and e-mails, and they followed my blog (Laughing All The Way, via CaringBridge). I strongly believe it’s easier to support a patient going through a health crisis when you can do so with humor. My friends and family made the experience fun.
Following chemotherapy, I began the first of thirty-five doses of radiation. It was during this time I began to write a cookbook for lazy cooks. Working title, the Lazy Gourmet, the book targeted patients like me going through treatment who had no energy to make healthful meals. My husband, who had tried cooking for me, heated a mean frozen dinner. He nuked an excellent hot dog. And that was the extent of his culinary skills. He accused me of writing the cookbook in self-defense. (The book eventually was released under the title Recipes for Recovery, which I hope has more market appeal than the Lazy Gourmet.)
I’ve reached the 2½ year mark now as a survivor, and I celebrate every clean mammogram. If you are diagnosed with breast cancer, be encouraged by my experience and stay positive. Check out ComedyCures.com, an organization sharing my laughter is good medicine philosophy. Professional comedians post daily jokes for cancer patients.
Joking aside, do those monthly self-exams and annual mammograms. You have a one-in-eight chance of having breast cancer in your lifetime.

Cheryl Norman celebrated two years as a cancer survivor in April, 2012. She is the author of romantic suspense novels, including the Mustang Sally series RESTORE MY HEART, RECLAIM MY LIFE, and REBUILD MY WORLD; also RUNNING SCARED and the upcoming RUNNING OUT OF TIME. She writes cookbooks, including RECIPES FOR RECOVERY. Visit cherylnorman.com for more information.

Rotini Florentine

Whole-wheat pasta is a powerhouse of nutrition. When you combine it with spinach, you have a nutritious, high fiber super dish!

Ingredients:
1 10 oz. pkg. frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. minced garlic
¼ tsp. dried oregano
¼ tsp. nutmeg
1 cup cooked whole wheat Rotini pasta
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:
Sauté the spinach in olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook for 2 minutes.
Add the seasonings. Stir.
Add the cooked Rotini and toss with the spinach.
Remove skillet from heat, top with the Parmesan cheese, and serve.

Yield: 2 servings

Variation: Any short pasta will work in this recipe (i.e. fusilli, farfalle, ziti) as long as it is whole wheat or whole grain. If you are gluten-sensitive, try rice pasta.
From Recipes for Recovery by Cheryl Norman ©2011

To purchase Cheryl’s recipe book please click HERE.

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Guest Post by Taryn Raye – Decadent Date Cookies

Today I’m handing my blog over to my lovely fellow Turquoise Morning Press author Taryn Raye. She’s graciously agreed to share a favorite recipe. Without further ado, please welcome Taryn and her awesome recipe and be sure to read the blurb about her novel Castaway Hearts!

 

Taryn Raye’s Decadent Crunchy Date Cookies

Thanks so much for having me Karen! It’s great to be here and I’m so excited to share this recipe with you and your readers.

With school starting back and fall fast approaching, I find that my thoughts often turn to comfort foods and treats that are perfect for chilly fall days and cold wintry nights.

Years ago, my grandmother made these cookies, only once, but I remembered fondly how rich and decadent the nutty fruity flavor was and how unique the ingredients, yet it was simple to make. It wasn’t until I was a grown woman that I finally asked her for the recipe though. I wanted a taste of something that reminded me of my childhood, of home, something I knew my family would love, as well.

For the past few years, my husband and I have found pleasure in making cookies and candies for the holidays together, as gifts for our closest friends and relatives. Along with things like peanut butter and chocolate fudge, lemon drop cookies, dipped pretzels and peppermint bark, Crunchy Date Cookies are an automatic for our list. It won’t be long now before the holidays sweep in and sneak up on us, so I thought what time is better than now to share it. You might want to add it to YOUR holiday treats for you or someone you know who has a bit of a sweet tooth.

 

Crunchy Date Cookies

Ingredients-

½-cup brown sugar

8 oz. package chopped dates

½ cup white sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 stick regular margarine

Dash of salt

 

Cook these ingredients together for 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

 

FOLD IN:

1 ½ cups Rice Krispies cereal

1 Cup chopped pecans

 

Let cool long enough that you can handle it. Form into balls and roll in powered (confectioner’s) sugar.

Enjoy!

Check out Taryn’s novel Castaway Hearts…

 

 

Blurb:

Twice orphaned, Catherine Barrett arrives in Virginia a stranger to her closest kin and secretly engaged to the one man her family would disapprove of- her seafaring grandfather’s apprentice. Add to her troubles, the rich and intriguing older brother of her secret betrothed, Dawson Randolph, a plantation owner who is as heartless as he is handsome. Heartbroken when her intended sets sail for his maiden voyage, Catherine finds it difficult to adjust to her new life, hoping to befriend the one man who is, undoubtedly, the match her grandparents wish for her. Dawson’s distaste for her secret engagement to his brother makes it clear he has no designs for marriage to anyone.

Especially her.

Ten years since the tragic loss of his young wife and infant son, Dawson Randolph is convinced love and marriage is a fool’s game and resents being pardon to his brother’s hidden engagement. Damned by his instant attraction and his own growing desire, Dawson vows to befriend her against his better judgment. Determined to bring her happiness in a time of fear and uncertainty, Dawson puts aside his animosity to become her confidant, only to realize Catherine holds the key to his heart. When tragedy strikes at sea, Catherine’s guilt pushes Dawson to the fringes of her life as madness consumes her.

Can his love save her before she drowns in her own grief? Or is he doomed to love her from a distance, always in the shadow of her love for his dead brother?

Castaway Hearts is available in eBook & print from-

Turquoise Morning Press-

Also available on Amazon for-

Kindle or Print

On Nook from Barnes & Noble

Various formats on

Smashwords, All Romance Ebooks, OmniLit, or Bookstrand.

***

About Taryn Raye- I was born and raised in a small town in Kentucky.  My father is a carpenter, my mother a homemaker and I have one younger sister. The town I grew up in is the famous home of Wild Turkey Distillers and a hop, skip and jump from Lexington, home of Keenland and the Kentucky Wildcats. I live in the country with my wonderful husband, who doesn’t mind that I often live multiple lives- the one we share and the ones bouncing around in my head. I have a 13 year old stepson, a 9 year old daughter and we have one furbaby- Miscellaneous- aka Mizzy- our 9 year old female cat. As you can tell, I love to bake.

Here are just a few places you can find Taryn Raye-

Website

Blog

Twitter

FB Page

Goodreads-

Google +

 

 

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Guest Post by Evelyn Jules – Debut Author of Blind Faith

Today’s guest poster is Evelyn Jules whose debut short story Blind Faith released in August. Leave a comment to welcome Evelyn to the blog and share one of your favorite fantasies to be entered for a chance to win a free copy of her steamy tale!

Personal Fantasies by Evelyn Jules

Have you ever fantasized about meeting a tall, dark, handsome stranger by chance? I do. All. The. Time. One of my personal favourite fantasies involves me bumping into said man on an escalator. I know, it’s not the most romantic of locations, but it stems from the time I was in a shopping mall and saw the most gorgeous man I’d ever seen in my life slowly rising to the top of the escalator. I just stood there on the main floor with my jaw hanging open, watching as inch after glorious inch of him became exposed. I’d like to think I would have at least attempted to approach him had I been alone, but my impatient friends carted me off, leaving my fantasy forever unfulfilled.

I hear stories all the time about how couples meet. A friend of mine met her main squeeze in a Costco warehouse. She was struggling to reach an item from a higher shelf, and her knight in shining sweatpants and a t-shirt swooped in to the rescue. I won’t lie. After I heard their (nauseatingly) sweet story, I marched straight to the nearest Costco and tried the damsel in distress act. Unfortunately I’m 5’10 and taller than half of the men who shop in Costco. They weren’t buying it. I used to think being able to reach things on the top shelf was one of the benefits of being tall. Now I know it’s preventing me from finding a man.

My latest fantasy involves me bumping into Mr. Right on the highway. Not literally bumping into him, although that would be fine if it was just a gentle love tap. I’m talking about those quick glances you sometimes exchange with passing cars. In my fantasy, my eyes lock with a handsome man driving a van. I should tell you that I drive a soccer mom van (minus the husband and kids I don’t have). It may not be the most attractive automobile, but I love my Forrest and he loves me. Anyway, we lock eyes for only a moment, but it feels like an eternity. Then I panic because I have no way of contacting him. So I maintain the same speed as him and use my fingers to mime the digits of my phone number. I should also mention that there aren’t many other vehicles on the road at this time, so it’s okay if I’m not totally paying attention to where I’m going. I think my love life is a little more important than staying in between the lines.

In Blind Faith, my first release (now available!), the hero and heroine have a chance meeting on a snowy sidewalk and things only heat up from there.

Here’s the blurb:

Faith Lawson is just your average, wholesome librarian with a dirty mind…until a chance encounter with a handsome stranger brings her fantasies to life in a frantic night of passion. But when he walks out her door, he leaves a piece of his past behind that changes everything.

I’m giving away a copy to one lucky commenter! So, to inspire some discussion, what are some of your fantasies?

Here are some places to find Evelyn:

BLOG

Goodreads

Twitter

Facebook

 

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Guest Post by Karen Booth – Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Biscotti

It seemed appropriate that my first guest blogger should be my lovely and talented critique partner Karen Booth. Aside from having co-written the book Long-Distance Lovers, Karen and I are solo authors in two of the same anthologies. The first anthology to contain both of our short stories is Foreign Affairs. (The other is the upcoming Felt Tips Anthology, due out 12/12/12.) In honor of the smoking hot Italian man who stars in Karen’s Foreign Affairs story she’s agreed to share with us one of her fabulous recipes—Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Biscotti.

 

Italian Treats by Karen Booth

My story for the Foreign Affairs anthology stars the sigh-worthy Antonio, a sweet and terribly romantic artist living in Florence, Italy. My heroine, Liza, is in Florence forcing herself to relax while trying to decide why her career has left her unfulfilled.

One morning, Liza sees Antonio at a café. From the word go, she can’t bear to pry her eyes off him. In fact, he’s so impossible to forget that she returns to the café the next morning to see her mystery man. She sips cappuccino and watches him, imagining all manner of steamy, sweaty liaisons.

On the third morning, Antonio sits at the table next to her. Although Liza is certain she was quite discreet while spying, he makes a quip about her being there again. This throws a nervous Liza off kilter, but it starts a conversation that ultimately changes the rest of her trip in a very satisfying way.

In honor of Liza and Antonio and Italy, I’m sharing a recipe for Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Biscotti. This one is a real crowd-pleaser in my house. My hubby isn’t a big fan of super sweet desserts, one kid always wants cinnamon, the other always wants chocolate. Whip up a batch of these and cozy up with Foreign Affairs and Antonio!

 

Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Biscotti

2 ¾ cups all-purpose flour

1 C sugar

2 t baking powder

¼ t salt

1 T vegetable oil

2 t vanilla extract

4 large eggs

2 t ground cinnamon

6 oz. semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips

 

topping:

2 T sugar

1 t ground cinnamon

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine flour, 1 C sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Combine oil, vanilla and eggs and add to flour mixture, stirring until well-blended. Dough will be dry and crumbly at first. Give it a few minutes for the flour to absorb the moisture from the eggs. Fold in chocolate chips. Knead lightly 7 to 8 times. I knead mine in the bowl.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and transfer the dough to the pan. Flatten the dough into two long rolls approximately 1” thick. Most biscotti recipes suggest doing two rolls and I usually follow the rules, but I tried doing one out of laziness and it did not work as well—still yummy, but way too big.

Sprinkle the roll with cinnamon sugar topping and gently press into dough.

Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Remove rolls from baking sheet—they should have cracks on top and look cooked through. Cool 10 minutes on a wire rack. Lower the oven temperature to 325 degrees. Cut rolls diagonally into 1 inch thick slides. Place the slices, cut sides down, on baking sheet.

Bake 10 minutes at 325. Turn cookies over and bake an additional 10 minutes. The cookies will be slightly soft in center but will harden as they cool. Remove from baking sheet and cool completely on wire rack.

 

About the author:

Karen Booth is a Midwestern girl transplanted in the South, raised on 80s music, Judy Blume, and the films of John Hughes. When she isn’t creating dreamy fictional men, she’s listening to music with her kids, honing her Southern cooking skills, or sweet-talking her astoundingly supportive husband into whipping up a cocktail.

For further information on Karen, visit her website or check out her Amazon author page. You can also chat with Karen at Twitter.

 

 

 

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