Friday, August 30, 2013

Aloha to Anna Campbell and A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS

Anna Campbell needs no introduction.   This award winning, fun loving, sizzling romance writer offers insight to her life Down Under and her new release, A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS ...

Kim:   Aloha from Baltimore! I am sad that I no longer share an ocean with you. I just reread your bio (link) ... you are a prolific writer with many projects in the past year! What is essential to your writing routine - Tim Tams? Vegemite Sandwiches? Shrimp on the Barbie? (I'm throwing in every preconceived notion that Americans have of Australians).

Anna:  Waving madly at you, Kim! Although I need a REALLY long arm for you to see me now! I was looking forward to visiting you in Hawaii – oh, well, I’ll just have to go to Baltimore instead! Although I’m not sure the surfing is as good. 

It’s been a really busy 12 months! A full-length book out and writing another. Three novellas, including DAYS OF RAKES AND ROSES, the Sons of Sin one. And a top secret Christmas project that I’ll go public about in a little while. Phew! I’m advertising for writing elves to move into the basement. In fact, I’m advertising for a basement! They’re not usually part of Aussie houses which may surprise you. So far no replies to either ad!

Laughed at your selection of things to get me going! Tim Tams are way too tempting. Shrimps on the Barbie aren’t a bad idea. I’m positively un-Australian. I HATE Vegemite. Always have. The answer to what helps me pound away on the keyboard (apart from the electricity bill that arrives with annoying reliability!) is tea and music. I write to music, usually soundtracks or classical.

Hawaiian fruit tea

Kim:  Your bio is so funny. You wrote,

Even though my heart has always been with long juicy historicals. I finished seven short contemporary stories, all of which were rejected very nicely by Harlequin. By this stage, under the bed was more crowded than the center of Hong Kong at Chinese New Year. Then I worked on a pile of totally unmarketable historicals, some of which I finished, most of which I didn’t. More boxes for the dust bunnies to eat in the bedroom. You’ll notice housework never featured in my mixed-up career choices.

I, for one, am glad that you kept writing rather than start cleaning! Funny that now your fans could fill the center of Hong Kong! What have you learned from your fans that has influenced your writing?

Anna:  Oh, what a lovely thing to say. So glad the bio gave you a giggle. I think I’d had a glass of wine by that stage of writing it! Because I was unpublished for so long, it’s been slightly surreal and extremely wonderful to have people all over the world reading the stories at last. It really is a dream come true. I’m constantly touched by readers’ generosity. Nothing keeps me typing through an elf-less deadline like a lovely email from someone who’s loved something I’ve written. I’m also delighted that my readers seem to be pretty open to where I want to take the stories. That makes me feel brave as a writer and confident about exploring whatever theme takes my fancy. And I have it on very good authority that one of my readers actually calls upon my name when she’s clutching the plane armrest and bumping around in turbulent air high up in the sky! Now that’s real enthusiasm for a writer’s work! ;-)

A non traditional wedding dress

Kim:  You share the same name as a wedding designer in Australia, Have you exchanged emails? What kind of wedding dress would your historical heroines like to wear?

Anna:  Isn’t that hilarious? Anna Campbell the designer wasn’t active when I set up my website, but she’s developing a worldwide audience now for her beautiful, romantic dresses. Love that we’re kind of in the same business. We’ve never been in contact, but I’m sure she gets my Google alert messages the way I get hers. I should call in on her shop next time I’m in Melbourne!

You know, now you ask me about weddings, most of my girls do the quick, special license version of a wedding (there’s usually a scandal hovering) so they don’t get the chance for frou-frou on the big day. Clearly, I’ll have to change that. In Regency England, brides wore any color they liked – white weddings were a Victorian fashion. My heroines are women of taste and discernment so I’m sure whatever color it is, the dress will be beautiful and elegant. In fact, very like an Anna Campbell design!

Kim:  Speaking of heroines, tell us about Genevieve Barrett from your new release, A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS? And who is she kissing at midnight?

Anna:  She’s kissing someone she shouldn’t – that’s the whole point of a kiss from a rake at midnight! The funny thing with this book is I had the title before I had much else. A vivid scene popped into my mind of a girl swimming naked in a pond just before a handsome gold-haired man discovers her. They swapped a bit of prickly banter and then kissed. Which sounds great, except that while I knew the gold-haired man was Richard Harmsworth, I had no idea who the girl was. Or how these people found themselves smooching in the moonlight. The rest of the story sprang from my answers to those questions.

Richard had a fairly well established character in SEVEN NIGHTS IN A ROGUE’S BED, however short his appearance, and I asked myself who would be the last woman he’d choose to fall in love with. So I paired London’s most elegant gentleman and most accomplished flirt with a bookish virginal vicar’s daughter who has no time for frivolity. She’s also smart enough to see through his charm to the man beneath which he doesn’t like at all. Genevieve was based on a couple of famous female scholars in Regency England – it was difficult for a woman to establish an intellectual reputation but not impossible. She’s interested in her work, not in men determined to work their seductive wiles upon her, particularly when she’s already worked out that Richard has an ulterior motive for chasing her. As you can probably tell, I had great fun writing these two!


Kim:  What's next for Anna Campbell? 

Anna:  Well, apart from the top secret Christmas project (if I tell, Santa won’t give me the gift-wrapped Richard Armitage I’ve asked for this year – hmm, and last year… Clearly that request got lost somewhere), I’m currently writing like a fiend on the third Sons of Sin book. It’s Cam’s story. He’s the mega-cool Duke of Sedgemoor who has all the answers in the other books. But when he falls in love with the last woman he ever imagined he would, Mr. Cool gets very hot under the collar and his perfectly arranged life goes south in a big way. The lovely people at Grand Central Publishing have contracted another Sons of Sin book which will feature James Fairbrother, the Marquess of Leath who is mentioned in A RAKE’S MIDNIGHT KISS and DAYS OF RAKES AND ROSES. That one’s a return to the gothic flavor of SEVEN NIGHTS – I always like stories with ruined castles and innocent heroines and heroes who have a touch of the sinister! I’ll start that in the new year and I’m already looking forward to it.

Thank you for having me as your guest today, Kim! Always love to visit! All the best in Baltimore!

File:Old bay seasoning.jpg
Public Domain from Wikipedia

Mahalo, Anna, for always making me laugh (your interviews) and cheer (your books).   I posted my five star review of A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS on Amazon (link) and Goodreads (link).  I am giving away a print copy of A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS to one randomly selected commenter.  To enter the giveaway,

1.  What is a "specialty" food from your home town (reference question one).   Maryland is known for its blue crabs boiled in Old Bay seasoning.   

On that note, I asked my husband for suggestions to change my moniker from "Kim in Hawaii'.  He suggested "Crabby Kim".  I decided to go with "Kim in Baltimore".

2.  This giveaway is open to all readers.

3.  Comments are open through Saturday, September 7, 10 pm in Baltimore.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, September 8.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

To learn more about Anna and her books, check out her website at

Thursday, August 29, 2013


My family watches PAWN STARS on Thursday night.   The cast members - Rick, Big Hoss, and Chumly - are Harley riders. In fact, one of the episodes followed them to Sturgis, South Dakota - the mecca of biker gatherings.  I chuckled to myself every time I see the cast ride ... as I have a college buddy (and sorority sister) who is just as bad ass as a Harley enthusiast!

Perhaps Angie Fox is now a Harley enthusiast ... from her bio:

Angie Fox is the New York Times bestselling author of several books about vampires, werewolves and things that go bump in the night.

She claims that researching her stories can be just as much fun as writing them. In the name of fact-finding, Angie has ridden with Harley biker gangs, explored the tunnels underneath Hoover Dam and found an interesting recipe for Mamma Coalpot’s Southern Skunk Surprise (she’s still trying to get her courage up to try it).

Angie earned a Journalism degree from the University of Missouri. She worked in television news and then in advertising before beginning her career as an author. Angie enjoys making up fun quizzes and thinks you should take one right now

Angie joins me for a cozy chat ...

Kim:  You hail from Missouri - what is your favorite sight, sound, and smell of the Show Me State?

Angie:  Sight: Cardinal baseball; sound: riverboats; smell: Italian food on The Hill.

Image provided by Angie Fox

Kim:  I commend your efforts in the name of research - can you share a tidbit from your ride with the Harley biker gang? 

Angie:  Well, I learned right away that you should not wear a pink t-shirt to a biker rally. At least I stood out! I also learned that dogs love to ride on motorcycles. In the first Accidental Demon Slayer book, the heroine has a dog and she also needs to ride off with her grandma's gang of biker witches. Seeing how real dogs can and do ride Harleys (they even have little motorcycle glasses called "doggles") helped me make my books more real. Oh, and shameless plug here, the first book in the series is free right now on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Nook and Apple iBooks. Look it up. It's called The Accidental Demon Slayer.

Image provided by Angie Fox

Kim:  What have you learned from journalism, television, and advertising that you an apply to romance writing?

Angie:  I’m all about creative marketing. It’s fun and my brain just thinks that way. Like for the Accidental Demon Slayer series, I developed the What’s Your Biker Witch Name quiz? It went viral, which has been a blast. You haven’t lived until you get emails from physicists in China telling you that their biker witch names are things like Wino Wally No Brakes and Two Date Tessa Hard Rider. And now for a shameless plug: you can get your biker witch name at:

Kim:  Tell us about MY BIG FAT DEMON SLAYER WEDDING - what inspired it?

Angie:  The whole idea just cracked me up. I mean here you have this badass demon slayer who hasn't quite gotten around to telling her overbearing mother what she does for a living (heck, her mom doesn't even know magic exists). So Lizzie the demon slayer is trying to think of ways to break the news to her mom, while managing the biker witches and her in-laws, who have all descended on this eccentric seaside mansion the week before the big event. She can't seem to get any alone time with her studly shapeshifting griffin fiance, and as a result, keeps getting caught mid-grope - thus horrifying her uptight mother almost as much as a demon popping out of the wedding cake - which it just might if she can't get a handle on the Earl of Hell. I had an absolute ball with this book.

Kim:  What's next for Angie Fox?

Angie:  My Big Fat Demon Slayer Wedding was so much fun to write, and it's done so well with readers, that I'm writing the next demon slayer book right now. It will release in early 2014. I'm also going to be releasing a holiday short story, The Ninth Dark Lord A Leaping, that is set in the demon slayer world.

Thanks for having me! I'd like to give away a signed copy of My Big Fat Demon Slayer Wedding.

Mahalo, Angie, for being my guest!  I posted my review of MY BIG FAT DEMON SLAYER WEDDING on Amazon (link) and Goodreads (link).   To enter Angie's giveaway,

1.  Leave a comment about a wedding (other than your own) that was fun to attend.   

Last summer, we attended a family wedding in Ohio - we are related to the bride.   My side of the family is loud and proud.   But we had the most fun meeting a member of the groom's family - his uncle lived in Honolulu.  How cool is that?

2.  This giveaway is open to all readers.

3.  Comments are open through Saturday, August 31, 10 pm in Baltimore.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, September 1.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

The Last of the Demon SlayersThe Accidental Demon SlayerThe Dangerous Book for Demon SlayersA Tale of Two Demon Slayers

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Aloha to Kieran Kramer and SAY YES TO THE DUKE

I have a special place in my heart for Kieran Kramer.  I recall picking up one of her bookmarks at RWA 2011 in Orlando.  I sent her an email to praise the artwork and book title.  Kieran responded back, noting her connection to the Navy.   She has generously supported the SOS Military Tribute at the RT Booklovers' Conventions ... and she writes entertaining historicals!  

Today Kieran is my guest as part of the SAY YES TO THE DUKE blog tour ...


1) There’s a stove house in the story. It’s where the duke’s old servant cultivates orchids. Orchids were not a big cultural trend at the time—that came later, during the Victorian age. But there were definitely stove houses in England in which hobbyists attempted to grow them during the Regency period. It was a very difficult undertaking, attempting to create an environment in which the flowers could flourish. Many times, the orchid ventures failed.

2) There’s a mama dog and her puppies in this book. For accuracy’s sake, I had to find out exactly when puppy eyes open after birth. That was fun, looking into puppy development!

3) The setting is winter in a country setting. The snow kept everyone there for a while. I wanted to make sure my heroine couldn’t escape the uncomfortable circumstances she found herself in at the ducal manor. And I wanted her separated from her family and friends at home.

4) I took the inspiration for the heroine Janice from the character Jan Brady, the middle sister in The Brady Bunch TV series. Like Jan, Janice is also a middle sister, wedged between a stunning older sister and an adorable younger one. She’ll discover herself on her own terms in the story.

5) I found Luke’s inspiration in both Rhett Butler and Indiana Jones. I wanted a hero who had a sense of humor, who didn’t take himself very seriously, but who had a deep streak of romance in him.

About Kieran: 

Double Rita®-finalist and USA Today bestseller Kieran Kramer writes Regency historical romances and now contemporary romance for St. Martin’s Press. THE EARL IS MINE, the second in her House of Brady series, is her latest release. SAY YES TO THE DUKE premiers in August 2013. SWEET TALK ME, set in present-day South Carolina, comes out in March 2014. A former CIA employee, journalist, and English teacher, Kieran’s also a game show veteran, karaoke enthusiast, and general adventurer. She lives where she grew up--in the Lowcountry of South Carolina--with her Naval Reserve commander husband and their three children.


Author Site:
Group blog of writer moms: 


Janice Sherwood wants to marry for love, but she’s failed to make a match after two Seasons. Her parents, the Marquess and Marchioness of Brady, arrange to send her to the Duke of Halsey’s country estate as a short-term guest of his grandmother, the dowager, in hopes that she might win the duke’s affections. What they never could have imagined is that Janice would fall for the ruggedly handsome servant Luke, who lives in the stables and carries an air of mystery and temptation.


When Luke Callahan learns that he is the legitimate heir to a dukedom, he will stop at nothing to claim what is his. But first, he must begin a game of disguise to secure his rightful inheritance. Janice isn’t part of his plan. But by engaging her in this dance of deception, might he lose her forever? 

Raves and Reviews for SAY YES TO THE DUKE 

“Kramer’s gift is her innate ability to tell a story with unerring honesty, deep emotion and humor. Readers will laugh, cry and deeply sigh from beginning to end of this beautifully told, enchanting love story.” —4 1/2 stars RT Book Reviews Top Pick!

“The third book in Kramer’s “House of Brady” series offers everything this author’s fans have come to expect including a sinfully sexy romance between two perfectly matched protagonists, a richly amusing cast of unconventional secondary characters, and a lively plot that doesn’t take itself too seriously.” —Booklist

Buy Links:

Amazon: link
B&N: link
Indiebound: link
Book Depository: link
Books-A-Million: link

SAY YES TO THE DUKE Excerpt: link
More about the book: link


Kieran is giving away the following to one(1) lucky reader (US only)

● A Harlequin tote bag
● A Heroes and Heartbreakers tote bag
● THE EARL IS MINE by Kieran Kramer
● MIDNIGHT SPECIAL and COMING ON STRONG, (two novels in one) by Tawny Weber
● DANGEROUS REFUGE by Elizabeth Lowell (hardcover)
● THE MARRIAGE MERGER by Jennifer Probst
● IT HAD TO BE YOU by Jill Shalvis
● LYON'S BRIDE by Cathy Maxwell
● DON'T CRY FOR ME by Sharon Sala
● THE LAST VICTIM by Karen Robards
● WHAT THE DUKE DESIRES by Sabrina Jeffries
● THE ARRANGEMENT by Mary Balogh 

 Tour Dates:

August 19-
Romancing Rakes For The Love of Romance

August 20-
The Romance Dish

August 21-
Ramblings From This Chick

August 22-
Romance Writer’s Revenge

August 23-
Jaunty Quills

August 26-
Get Lost In A Story

August 27-
Herding Cats and Burning Soup

August 28-
Cocktails and Books

August 29-
SOS Aloha

August 30-
Urban Girl Reader


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Kieran (right) with Cathy Maxwell at the SOS Military Mixer
RT 2012 in Chicago

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Aloha to Christy English and LOVE ON A MIDSUMMER'S NIGHT

Love on a Midsummer Night (Shakespeare in Love, #2)

Summer is winding down with Labor Day this coming weekend. Yet readers can can revel in mid summer's pleasures with Christy English's LOVE ON A MIDSUMMER'S NIGHT:

A Regency-era retelling of Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream."

The charming, dissolute Raymond, Earl of Pembroke, is the most notorious rake in London. Home from the war against Bonaparte's forces, he spends his life gaming, drinking and bedding courtesans, trying to forget the only woman he ever loved.

Arabella, Duchess of Hawthorne, is the woman who betrayed him. Forced into a marriage with an old man against her will ten years before, Arabella never saw Pembroke again. But now her elderly husband is dead, and the new Duke of Hawthorne wants to force her into his bed.

Desperate, Arabella goes to Pembroke in the dark of night and begs for his help and protection. In spite of his anger and bitterness, Pembroke can not turn his old love away. He and Arabella journey to Derbyshire during the midsummer festival to escape the marauding duke. Arabella and Pembroke find that their attraction for each other has not diminished, but has grown to a conflagration beyond their control. They find themselves falling under an enchantment, caught in a dream from which they never want to wake.

An endless summer in Hawaii

I posted my four star review on Amazon (link) and Goodreads (link).  I am giving a print copy of LOVE ON A MIDSUMMER'S NIGHT to one randomly selected commenter. To enter the giveaway, 

1.  Leave a comment about summer nights ... did you see any stars?  enjoy fireworks?  kiss a hero?

I miss viewing Hoku-ho’okele-wa’a.  It translates as the canoe-guiding star aka Sirius.

2.  This giveaway is open to all readers.  

3.  Comments are open through Saturday, August 31, 10 pm in Hawaii.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, September 1.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City 


Monday, August 26, 2013

Aloha to Sophie Barnes and THE TROUBLE WITH BEING A DUKE

The Trouble With Being a Duke (At the Kingsborough Ball, #1)

"It's a ballroom blitz."  - Sweet (a 1970s glam rock band).

Avon is sponsoring a Release Day Blitz for THE TROUBLE WITH BEING A DUKE from the Kingsborough Ball series:

Sometimes happily ever after . . .

Anthony Hurst, Duke of Kingsborough, knows the time has come for him to produce an heir. But first he must find a bride. When he meets the most exquisite woman at his masquerade ball, he thinks his search is over . . . until the breathtaking beauty runs off. With few clues other than her figure, her scent, and the memory of her kiss, Anthony must find his mystery lady.

. . . needs a little bit of help.

Isabella Chilcott can scarcely believe it: she is finally at the Kingsborough Ball. As a child, she dreamed of dancing a waltz here, and now, thanks to a gorgeous gown she’s found in the attic, Isabella is living her fairytale fantasy. And she’s waltzing with the Duke of Kingsborough himself! But she must escape before he discovers her secrets . . . for she is not who she pretends to be, and falling in love with Prince Charming is the last thing she can allow herself to do.

Buy The Trouble With Being A Duke

Add it to your Goodreads Shelf!

Born in Denmark, SOPHIE BARNES spent her youth traveling with her parents to wonderful places all around the world. She’s lived in five different countries, on three different continents, and speaks Danish, English, French, Spanish and Romanian. She has studied design in Paris and New York and has a bachelor’s degree from Parson’s School of design, but most impressive of all - she’s been married to the same man three times - in three different countries and in three different dresses.

While living in Africa, Sophie turned to her lifelong passion: writing. When she’s not busy dreaming up her next romance novel, Sophie enjoys spending time with her family, swimming, cooking, gardening, watching romantic comedies and, of course, reading. She currently lives on the East Coast.

Visit Sophie Barne’s website at You can also find her on Facebook and follow her on Twitter (@BarnesSophie).

Check out Sophie's giveaway on her website (at this link).  You can also find the Rafflecopter form on the blog tour stops:

Fri 8/23:
The Jeep Diva—Review

Sat 8/24:
Ramblings From This Chick— Q&A

Sun 8/25:
Truly Simply Pink—Review

Mon 8/26:
Rakes Rogues and Romance—Guest Post: Introduction to Isabella and Anthony

Tue 8/27:
At the Corner of First and Romance—Guest Post: Writing The Trouble With Being A Duke

Release Day Blitz:
Romancing the Readers
Romance Bookworm’s Reviews
Save Your Money for Books
Unwrapping Romance
Books Like Breathing
Toot’s Book Reviews
Gidget’s Bookshelf
Storm Goddess Book Reviews

Wed 8/28:
Seduced By A Book—Promo/ Blurb

Thurs 8/29:
Delphina Reads Too Much—Guest Post: Sophie Barnes’ Writing Soundtrack

Fri 8/30:
Doing Some Reading—Guest Post: Diary Entry from Jamie

Sat 8/31:
Teatime Romance—Q&A

Sun 9/1:
Crystal Blogs Books—Review

Mon 9/2:
Snarky Mamma-Review

Tue 9/3:
Brunette Librarian—Review

Wed 9/4:
Herding Cats & Burning Soup—Guest Post: 3 Lies & 1 Truth About Isabella Chilcott

Thurs 9/5:
Urban Girl Reader—Review

Fri 9/6:
Bitten by Love Reviews—Q&A

Sat 9/7:
Caffeinated Book Reviewer—Review

Mon 9/9:
For the Love of Bookends—Review

Tue 9/10:
Dear, Restless Reader—Review

Check out Sophie's website to read the first chapter (at this link).


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Coming December 31st 2013

Aloha to Amanda Scott and THE KNIGHT'S TEMPTRESS


On this day in 1768, Captain Cook sailed from England aboard the HMS Endeavour.   His travels to the Pacific would expand England's colonies to Australia and Polynesia.   In fact, Cook named an archipelago as New Caledonia - its coastline reminded him of Scotland, his father's homeland.

Sigh.  Scotland.

Scottish flag over Urquhart Castle on Loch Ness

Amanda Scott brings romantic adventure to life in historic Scotland.  She joins me for a cozy chat to celebrate her upcoming release, THE KNIGHT'S TEMPTRESS.

Kim:  You lived in Honolulu for one year - do you have a favorite memory from your time in Paradise?  

(Captain Cook is credited as the first European contact with the Hawaiian islands in 1778 during his third voyage to the Pacific).

Amanda:  I have lots of fond memories but the strongest is probably being a member of the Honolulu Junior League Children’s Theater and playing Little Red Riding Hood at schools on Oahu and the Big Island (at Volcano, Hilo, & others), mostly for primary grades but occasionally for older kids as well. The play was interactive, so the children were the trees and shrubs of the forest that Little Red had to walk through to get to Grandma’s house and where she met the wolf. It a was wonderful experience. The children would scream to warn me that the wolf was coming, and offer to let me hide behind them, and they’d yell at the “wolf” to “shoo” or “get out of here!” There were four of us in the cast, and once, when a teacher who hadn’t quite got the message about how the play worked and kept ordering the children to be quiet, our wolf sat on the teacher’s lap, put her arms around the teacher’s neck, and quietly informed her that we were delighted to have the children so involved in our play. The kids thought it was great that the wolf ‘hugged’ their teacher, and went into gales of laughter when one wag screamed out, “Don’t eat her!” Definitely a fond memory, but there were many, many others. In fact, now that I’m thinking about it, just going up to Volcano was a special treat. The Hawaiian humidity had been strongly affecting me, so getting to the higher altitude was blissful. Other members of the cast were complaining about “how high” it was (about 4,000 feet, if I remember correctly). But I’ve spent a good portion of my life at 7,300-8000 feet, so for me, it was just heavenly to be able to breathe naturally again. I did adapt, though, and my husband still misses the island life (and the food, snorkeling, everything), I think.

Sea arch in the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
near Volcano and Hilo

Kim:  You are well read in history, especially British History. You have written romances across several centuries. What draws you to the British Isles? If you could travel back in time, where would you like to visit in what year?

Amanda:  The British Isles have fascinated me for as long as I’ve known they existed, and I have a Masters Degree in History with specialties in England and Scotland. My ancestors on both sides came from Scotland and England (Scotts, Douglases, Jamisons, and Logans, primarily). My first English ancestor, a Lowell on my mom’s side, came in the late 17th century. The first Scotts and a Welshman on my dad’s side named John Rice Jones arrived in the mid-to late 18th century. They settled in New York, Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, then Arkansas, the Northwest Territory, and Missouri, and later moved on west to California. One great-great-great grandfather, Judge Andrew Scott, was the first “Supreme” Court justice in Arkansas. His brother was the first senator from Missouri and named the state of Arkansas … oh, and in a fit of nepotism, appointed his younger brother the first judge for the “Post of Arkansas,” which is pretty much all there was then. Judge Andrew served a number of terms, fought and won at least two duels (one of them against another judge over a card game), and lived a wonderfully colorful life. I have a copy of a letter that he wrote to his wife to open in the event of his death in that one). My paternal grandfather loved family history and told me stories culled from ours from the time I was small, so writing about Scotland came naturally to me. I began with the 16th century but moved back to the medieval period and am now moving slowly forward again.

As for where I’d visit if I could go back in time, frankly, I like 2013 and would not want to live in any century but the present one. Spending my summers in a rustic cabin, as I do, is enough historical living for me. I like libraries, iced mochas, and driving fast cars. Living in a drafty, smoky castle might be interesting for a sennight or so, and I love good haggis, but after that … nae, moran taing! (no, thanks). On the other hand, if I could drop back in time and find some extraordinarily rich person to adopt me and see that I had access to all the finer things that the period had to offer, I might just consider one quick fling. It wouldn’t be Scotland though. I’d like, more than anything I can think of in the historic field, to go back to fifteenth-century England—London and Yorkshire, specifically—long enough to find out what really happened to the Princes in the Tower. I don’t believe that Richard III killed them, but I’d like to see that longtime historic mystery laid to rest. If you are interested in my reasons for believing in Richard, take a look at my book The Rose at Twilight, available now in most electronic formats, including Kindle and Nook. That book and the rest of my backlist can be found, with buy-links on my website and at 


Kim:  Tell us about the Lairds of the Loch series and your new release, THE KNIGHT'S TEMPTRESS.

Amanda:  The germ for my Lairds of the Loch trilogy, of which The Knight’s Temptress (Forever, August 27, 2013) is Book 2 and follows The Laird’s Choice (Forever, Dec 2012), came to me one day while I was enjoying my morning walk. I have long wondered about certain instincts that we all seem to share to one degree or another, things like the tickle one gets or the way the hair raises on the back of one’s neck as a warning of danger, the way some people (like Lee Childs’s Jack Reacher, for example) just know what time it is without a watch or a clock, and others know exactly how much time has passed since we put something in to bake and can reach the oven just as the timer dings. Many of us know who is on the phone, even when we haven’t heard from that person in months, or we’re reaching for the phone to place a call, and it rings. The person we were about to call is calling us! I also considered horse whisperers and people who insist that their cats talk to them (I’m one of them), people who can calm a frightened or wild animal with seemingly nothing but a calm voice or an outstretched hand, people who have a nagging feeling that if A happens, B will follow but have no reason, let alone a logical one, for thinking so … and prove to be absolutely right. How do they know? And, more importantly, why do most of us distrust such feelings, rather than exploring them and learning to trust them or trying to strengthen them. In thinking about all that, it occurred to me that these might be remnants of survival instincts of long ago, in which case they would likely have been stronger and more closely heeded then. In the usual manner of such things when an author is concerned (this one, at least), I began to wonder just how strong I might make such “instincts” and still have a plausible story. Then I discovered the myth of Camilla, the huntress and Amazon warrior, who was a friend of the goddess Diana. In reading about her early days, the prologue for The Laird’s Choice was born, along with the trilogy’s ongoing conflict between a laird whose lands and chiefdom had been usurped and the traitorous cousin who stole them. The laird, determined to win back his chiefdom but blessed with only three daughters (his sons having been murdered during the coup) is scheming to marry his daughters to warriors from powerful clans who can help him. His daughters (loosely based on the three Fates) each have special gifts and a few that they share. Andrena (Book 1) has a peculiar affinity with the birds and beasts of the forest. Lachina or “Lina” (Bk 2) has a gift of serenity, in that she can calm others just by being near them, and unbeknownst to her, she has inherited her mother’s gift of foresight. And Muriella, the youngest one, loosely based on Clotho, the spinner of life, wants to be a seanachie (clan tale-spinner and historian), and has a fertile imagination and an eidetic memory. 


The Knight’s Temptress is Lina’s story. When she and her good friend Lizzie Galbraith fall captive to renegades who have seized the royal castle and burgh of Dumbarton, Sir Ian Colquhoun, a daring knight who has been tasked by the King of Scots to retake the hitherto impregnable stronghold, which sits on a hundred-foot rock a mile around and has only one entrance, realizes that if he is not to risk the deaths of the two maidens, he must rescue them first. Lina has known Ian since the days when he considered her a too-dignified child and could never resist an opportunity to ruffle her dignity. She thinks he is too reckless and often fails to think before he acts, and she has occasionally been right about that. Her rescue may even be a case in point, because in rescuing Lina, Ian discovers not only that his followers think he is mad but that Lina is now in more danger than ever, and the only solution … Ah, that would be telling too much, wouldn’t it?

School children as tour guides at Linlithgow Palace,
home of the Stewart Kings in Amanda's books

Kim:  What's next for Amanda Scott?

Amanda:  I just finished The Warrior’s Bride, which is book 3 in my Lairds of the Loch trilogy, and having recently written two trilogies set in the Highlands (Scottish Knights and Lairds of the Loch) and one set in Dumfriesshire & Galloway (Tamed by a Laird, Seduced by a Rogue, and Tempted by a Warrior), I’m ready to return to the Borders for a while. I mean to continue with Scott and Douglas history for the background. I tend to move forward chronologically with the history, so I’ll set the three books around 1426-1436, the end of James I’s reign (Jamie Stewart). That trilogy is tentatively titled Border Nights, and the first book tentatively titled The Love Thief. Its hero will be the second in a long line of Sir Walter Scotts —actually, not all Sirs, but there was a Walter Scott in every other generation in the Buccleuch line, and other lines that branched off of it, from the early fourteenth century right down to my grandfather, who was named for his grandfather. And no, we are not related to the poet/author Sir Walter Scott, except insofar as we most likely have some common ancestry.

Memorial to Sir Walter Scott
in Edinburgh

Mahalo, Amanda, for visiting SOS Aloha!  I am giving away a print copy of THE KNIGHT'S TEMPTRESS to one randomly selected commenter.  To enter the giveaway,

1.  Leave a comment about a "famous" person in your family history ... or at least a famous person with the same last name.   My father, born in rural Mississippi, was named after Andrew Jackson ... I don't know if we have common kin with the Seventh President and Army veteran.  But my father's tree does include many veterans, including the Civil War, WWII, Vietnam, and my father's own service during the Korean conflict.

2.  This giveaway is open to all readers.

3.  Comments are open through Saturday, August 31, 10 pm in Baltimore.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, September 1.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

My boys pose with the bagpiper at
Huntington Tower in Scotland.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Weekly Winners

I am a winner this week as our household goods arrived!   We have winners here at SOS Aloha:

- June wins a "jeweled" souvenir from our recent trip to China.

Renee is offering a coupon for 50% off DESIRE WEARS DIAMONDS at Smashwords.   The coupon code is VP49L.

Kate Meader's FEEL THE HEAT
- Maureen wins an ecopy.

- Sue wins an ecopy.

Bella Summer Takes a Chance

- Dani is the winner.

FREE READ! You can also get a peek into the pleasure quarter in the introductory short novella, CAPTURING THE SILKEN THIEF. Free from 8/25 to 9/7 on Amazon and B&N.

Amazon - link
B&N - link

- Jane is the winner.

Shooting Scars (The Artists Trilogy, #2)

- Barbara E. wins a print copy.

Cathy Maxwell's MARRIED IN HASTE
- Jeanne M. wins a bag full of books from Cathy Maxwell.

Check out Cathy's post for Day 24 of National Read-A-Romance Month at this link.   It is classic Cathy Maxwell - heartwarming, endearing, and funny!


Winners, please claim your prizes by sending your mailing address to


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Friday, August 23, 2013

Aloha to Anya Wylde and SEEKING PHILBERT WOODBEAD - The Fairweather Sisters, Book 2

My children returned from Camp Grandma this week, bringing my mail that had been forwarded from Hawaii.   The mail included RWA's monthly magazine, ROMANCE WRITERS REPORT.  It featured an article about historical romance, asking the question if Romanceland is flooded with Regency Romance?  I loves Regency Romance - there are still plenty of dukes, ladies, and country parties to explore!

Anya Wylde is celebrating her newest Madcap Regency Romance, SEEKING PHILBERT WOODBEAD, Book 2 of the The Fairweather Sisters - specially priced on Amazon at this link:

Miss Celine Fairweather’s life was bobbing along like a boat on a tranquil stream when all of a sudden a summons from her beloved sister Penelope Radclyff, the Duchess of Blackthorne, changed it all.

Celine hurtles off to the London to help the duchess run the Blackthorne Mansion and to discover the whereabouts of her lost love Philbert Woodbead.

Celine manages to keep things deathly dull and under control for a whole week until she enlists the help of the handsome Lord Elmer—a mischievous rogue, an ex-pirate, and an incorrigible flirt who is wanted dead by all of England’s husbands with attractive wives.

They scurry from one giddy escapade to another seeking Philbert in musty inns and dusty streets, and through it all Celine tries to keep her bonnet straight, her gloves spotless and her heart in tune with her head.

Life has suddenly turned exciting, and love has well and truly bitten her rosy buttocks. Now the only question is … who has done the biting?

I look forward to reading SEEKING PHILBERT WOODBEAD as soon as school resumes next week.   I am giving away an ecopy of SEEKING PHILBERT WOODBEAD to one randomly selected commenter. To enter the giveaway,

1.  Leave a comment about characters' names from historical romances - do you have any unusual (but historical) names in your family tree?

My household goods arrived this week ... so I pulled out my husband's family tree (in a lovely frame from my in laws).   Both his mother and father have roots from England ... but its a paternal great-great-grandmother from Germany whose name caught my eye - Ernstina Dorothea

2.  This giveaway is open to all readers.  

3.  Comments are open through Saturday, August 31, 10 pm in Hawaii.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, September 1.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

To learn more about Anya and her books, check out her blog at

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Aloha to Jade Lee and WHAT THE BRIDE WORE

On Monday, we received our household goods from Hawaii.   As you can imagine, it was Christmas in August ... especially as I opened the boxes of souvenirs from our recent trip to Korea.   I added the Korean folk bride figurine with the Japanese folk bride in our curio cabinet.
Modern Korean bride in Ko Olina

Brides are a popular topic in historical romances ... and Jade Lee delivers a delicious treat with WHAT THE BRIDE WORE:

When All is Lost

All Grant Benton, Earl of Crowle, can think of is restoring his family's fortune so he can go back to being a gentleman of leisure. But when he meets beautiful, purposeful Lady Irene Knopp, he begins to question whether there might not be a better way to live life after all...

What's Left is Desire

Lady Irene will never give up her fulfilling work dressing the most beautiful brides in England. She'd rather risk losing love forever than sacrifice her own life's purpose. Yet she has never met a more magnetic, attractive man than Grant. Trapped between the fleeting chance at love and passion for her work, is it possible she can have it all?

Praise for Wedded in Scandal:

"Dazzling...a beautiful, haunting tale of love overcoming the seemingly greatest odds."—Night Owl Reviews

"A delectable and delightful love story...Lee's gift for characterization, sensuality, and swift-moving plots engage readers' emotions and sweet them away."—RT Book Reviews, 4 star

"Jade Lee gives us a winner."—Fresh Fiction

Another bride in Kailua

I posted my four star review of WHAT THE BRIDE WORE on Goodreads (link).  I am giving away a copy of WHAT THE BRIDE WORE to one randomly selected commenter.  To enter the giveaway,

1.  Leave a comment about fabrics (as Lady Irene is a fabric buyer for a fashionable wedding dress shop).  What's your favorite?   I love damask!

2.  This giveaway is open to all readers.

3.  Comments are open through Saturday, August 24, 10 pm in Hawaii.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, August 25.


Kim in Hawaii

To learn more about Jade and her books, check out her website at

Wedded in Scandal (Bridal Favors, #1)Wedded in Sin (Bridal Favors, #2)