Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Aloha to BOOKS THAT NEED MORE ATTENTION Giveaway Hop - Romantic Comedy from Lori Wilde

Valerie at Stuck in Books organized today's giveaway hop.   She asked bloggers to feature a book you love but doesn't get as much attention as it deserves.

I spotlight two books from Lori Wilde.   CHARMED AND DANGEROUS and MISSION: IRRESISTIBLE are companion books with physical comedy with plenty of laugh out loud moments.  


When her thrill-seeking twin sister goes missing, Maddie Cooper must come to her rescue-which means teaming up with irritating, arrogant, and altogether way too sexy FBI agent David Marshall. David isn't one to get easily distracted but his new self-proclaimed partner has him completely sidetracked with her delectable curves and knockout smile. His first priority: follow the leads in the case. Then he can go about the all-too-enjoyable task of following his heart . . .


PR specialist Cassie Cooper loves the adrenaline rush of a well-planned party. And a masquerade ball at the museum is her best yet. But when a legendary amulet is stolen practically from under her nose, she needs the help of her nemesis, archaeologist Harrison Standish. No-nonsense Harrison has all the intensity of Indiana Jones. Though just when he needs his full attention on their mission, he's having the damnedest time keeping his mind-and his hands-off Cassie . . .


If you missed these books in their first print run, you are in luck! Forever Romance is republishing both stories in one novel titled DOUBLE TROUBLE (link), available December 16, 2014.   Just in time for holiday reading!

I am giving away a book choice from my convention stash to one randomly selected commenters.  To enter the giveaway,

1.  Leave a comment about a book you love but doesn't get as much attention as it deserves.

2.  Comments are open through Saturday, October 18, 10 pm in Baltimore.  

3.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, October 19.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Check out the Giveaway Hop at this link.

October falls into Romance

10/1: Books that need MORE Attention Giveaway Hop (coordinated by Stuck in Books)
10/4: Celebrate Little Victories - Baltimore Book Festival
10/5: Weekly Winners
10/6: Monday Night Romance
plus LA Kornetsky's DOGHOUSE: A Gin and Tonic Mystery to celebrate Animal Welfare Week
plus Maya Banks' KEEP ME SAFE
10/8: Elizabeth Langston's WHISPERS FROM THE PAST
10/9: Mia Marlowe's ONCE UPON A PLAID

10/10: Heather Ashby's Guest Post - First Drafts
plus Anne Cleeland's TAINTED ANGEL
10/11: Alyssa Maxwell's MURDER AT MARBLE HOUSE
plus Christi Caldwell's ALWAYS A ROGUE, FOREVER HER LOVE
10/12: Weekly Winners
plus Michele Gorman's PERFECT GIRL
10/13: Navy's 239th Birthday and the SOS Aloha Military Tribute
plus Stacy Finz's GOING HOME

plus Regency Masquerades: A Limited Edition Boxed Set of Six Traditional Regency Romance Novels of Secrets and Disguises with Brenda Hiatt, Lynn Kerstan, Allison Lane, Gail Eastwood, Alicia Rasley, and Elena Greene
10/16: Christi Caldwell's FOR LOVE OF THE DUKE
plus Kimberly Kincaid's STIRRING UP TROUBLE
10/17:  Vanessa Riley's SWEPT AWAY
Jill Marie Landis' TOO HOT FOR HULA

10/19: Weekly Winners
10/20: Tracy Solheim's HOLIDAY AT MAGNOLIA BAY
10/21: Heather Hey Ford's A TASTE OF CHARDONNAY
10/22: Cathy Maxwell's THE GROOM SAYS YES
plus Kelsey Browning, Nancy Naigle, The Grannies, and FIT TO BE TIED

plus Candis Terry's SWEET TEXAS series
10/24: Sheri Cobb South 

10/25: Celebrate Little Victories
10/26: Weekly Winners
10/27: Julie Brannagh's COVERING KENDALL 

plus Benjamin Franklin fishes for cats ... and Jennifer McQuiston combats Ebola
10/28: Last Hero Standing Book Blitz Tour

plus State of Romance, Benjamin Franklin, and Authors Behaving Humanely
10/30: Stephanie Lauren's BY WINTER'S LIGHT
plus Inigo Montoya, Mrs. Dogood, Eileen Dreyer 
Lillian Marek's LADY ELINOR'S WICKED ADVENTURE - book review

11/1: Celebrate Little Victories - Books I'm Grateful I Read Giveaway Hop (coordinated by Stuck in Books)
11/2: Weekly Winners
HOME FOR CHRISTMAS duet with JoAnn Ross and Jessica Scott
11/4: Nancy Lee Badger's MY DARK HIGHLANDER
11/5: Julie Ann Walker's Black Knights Inc. Quiz Tour

State of Romance - Massachusetts

11/7: Sharon Page
11/8: Celebrate Little Victories
11/9: Weekly winners
plus Michele Callahan's WHITE FIRE
plus Lynn  Cahoon's IF THE SHOE KILLS
11/11: Veterans Day with Sharon Hamilton's SEAL's PROMISE

11/12: State of Romance - Montana
11/13: Regina Scott's THE BRIDE SHIP 

plus Michele Gorman's THE RELUCTANT ELF
11/14: Victoria Vane's SLOW HAND
11/15: Celebrate Little Victories
11/16: Weekly Winners
11/17: Monday Night Romance
plus Sallly Orr's THE RAKE'S HANDBOOK
11/18: Elizabeth Langston's I WISH
11/19: State of Romance - Kansas
11/20: Catherine Lloyd's DEATH COMES TO LONDON
11/21: Mia Marlowe's A RAKE BY ANY OTHER NAME
11/22: Celebrate Little Victories
11/23: Weekly Winners
11/24: Shannyn Schroeder's HER WINNING FORMULA
11/25: Eileen Dreyer's TWICE TEMPTED
11/26: State of Romance - New Hampshire
11/27: Thanksgiving
11/28: Shelley K Wall's FIND ME
11/29: Celebrate Little Victories
11/30: Weekly Winners

12/1: Twelve Days of New Adult Romance with Chanel Cleeton's FRENCH KISSED
12/2: Amanda Berry's CASANOVA
plus Susanna Fraser's A CHRISTMAS REUNION
12/3: Collette Cameron's TRIUMPH AND TREASURE
12/4: Regan Walker's THE TWELTH NIGHT WAGER
12/5: Open
12/6: Celebrate Little Victories
12/7: Weekly Winners
and Remembering Pearl Harbor Day
Charlene Groome's COLD AS ICE 
12/9: Open
12/10: State of Romance - Mississippi
12/11: Gina Danna's LOVE & RECKONING
12/12: Open
12/13: Celebrate Little Victories
12/14: Weekly Winners
12/15: Monday Night Romance
12/16: Nancy Lee Badger's SHIVER
12/17: State of Romance - North Carolina
12/18: Open
12/19: Open
12/20: Celebrate Little Victories
12/21: Weekly Winners
12/22: Colleen Shannon's FOSTER JUSTICE
12/23: Open
12/24: State of Romance - Washington
12/25: Christmas
12/26: Boxing Day
12/27: Celebrate Little Victories
12/28: Weekly Winners
12/29: Monday Night Romance
12/30: Open
12/31: State of Romance - West Virginia 

1/1: New Year's Day
1/2: Open

1/3: Celebrate Little Victories
1/4: Weekly Winners
1/5:  Grace Burrowes' A SINGLE KISS
1/6: Tracy Solheim's BACK TO BEFORE
1/7: State of Romance 
1/8: Fiona Lowe's MONTANA ACTUALLY

Monday, September 29, 2014

Aloha to Marie Harte and RUINING MR PERFECT - Teaser Tour



Vanessa Campbell is a CPA by day and a perfectionist by night. She’s fit, successful…and decidedly lonely. She can’t stop thinking about the youngest McCauley brother, Cameron. He’s just like her: smart, attractive, and usually right—except when dealing with her.


Cameron McCauley likes Vanessa a little too much. She’s a blond goddess with a razor-sharp tongue. She hates to be wrong, just like him. But she can hold a grudge and is stubborn to a fault—also like him.

A past disagreement has them rubbing each other the wrong way. Cam is dying to shake Vanessa up—get her to let loose. But if he succeeds, can his heart handle it? 

Pre-Order Now:

Amazon: link
BAM: link
B&N: link
Chapters: link
Indiebound: link
iTunes: link
Kobo: link

Caffeine addict, boy referee, and romance aficionado, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Marie Harte is a confessed bibliophile and devotee of action movies. Whether hiking in Central Oregon, biking around town, or hanging at the local tea shop, she’s constantly plotting to give everyone a happily ever after. Visit marieharte.com and fall in love. 

An Excerpt 

“You okay? I saw you talking to your buddy earlier.”

She grimaced. “He’s not my ‘buddy.’ We went to dinner once.” She lowered her voice and leaned in, conscious John might have friends close by. “He’s now a client. Bellemy Tech.”

Cameron whistled. “Nice.”

“Yeah. He wants me to head the account, which my boss agreed to. I’m supposed to meet him Friday to discuss specifics.” She hadn’t mentioned her feelings to anyone at work, not even her friends, not wanting to sound paranoid. But for some odd reason, she knew she could talk to Cameron. He wouldn’t judge her, not for this. “I get a weird vibe from him.”

He straightened. “Weird how?”

“I don’t know. It’s just… It would be totally stupid to think he came to our accounting firm just to be with me. We’re the best in town. Companies as big as Bellemy don’t hire people to get their staff dates. But John specifically wanted me to head the account. Again, I am the best, but it would make more sense for either of my bosses to head things. I’m a senior manager, but they’re big money.”


“Yeah. He and I are supposed to meet for dinner to discuss work. I preferred my office, even his, but he said he only has time in the evening.” She looked into Cameron’s deep blue eyes, feeling foolish. “I’m being overly sensitive because of one lousy date, aren’t I?”

“What does your gut tell you?” he asked softly.

Cameron’s intensity soothed her, because in all the time she’d known him, he’d never shrugged her off or acted as if she were having a “Van-zilla moment,” as her roommates were fond of saying. He took her seriously.

“It tells me to watch him.”

“Then listen to it. You’re a smart woman, Vanessa. Trust your gut.” He finished his coffee. “Now how about I walk you to your car?” He leaned in to bring her to her feet.

When his face neared hers, she whispered, “What are you doing?” Cameron had pulled a fast one with that kiss in her kitchen, in private. Like her, he had never seemed big on public displays of affection.

“He’s looking over here,” he murmured. “Why don’t you kiss me and show him you’re not available?”

“Oh.” Hell. She sounded disappointed. When he blinked and gave her a slow smile, she knew he’d heard and discerned her feelings. “Shut up.”

She kissed him quickly, but the lingering warmth remained. Stupid libido. 


Monday Night Romance - Read Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Our weekly column, Monday Night Romance, is now available at this link.   This week we celebrate the Read Pink Campaign sponsored by Penguin Random House.   So let's chat more about pink ...

In 1975, Pink Floyd topped the UK and US Charts with WISH YOU WERE HERE.

In 1984, Molly Ringwald taught us how to refashion a dated prom dress in PRETTY IN PINK.

In the 1986, Don Johnson made it fashionable for men to wear pink in MIAMI VICE.

In 2001, Alecia Beth Moore got the party started with pink hair.  

In 2013, my family discovered the artwork of Lazy Pink Whale in Korea.

In 2014, Hello Kitty celebrated her 40th birthday in pink glamour. 

Pink may be fashionable, but pink is also a reminder to get your annual mammogran for early detection.   Likewise, let's join together to support those who are battling breast cancer now.

Tracy is giving away a choice from her backlist plus special Breast Cancer Awareness swag to one randomly selected commenter. To enter the giveaway,

1.  Leave a comment about pink - anything goes!

2.  Comments are open through Saturday, October 4, 10 pm in Baltimore.  

3.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, October 5.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City 

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Aloha to Amanda Scott and MOONLIGHT RAIDER - Release Blitz Blog Tour


Border lord Walter Scott of Rankilburn, grief-stricken after burying his father, goes to the forest seeking solace. Instead he finds a half-naked young lady fleeing pursuit. Wat offers his protection, but honor demands that he return the golden-eyed beauty to her rightful husband-even though the last thing he wants is to see her in another man's arms.


Molly Cockburn has fled her home, family, and the brutal scoundrel she was forced to wed. Her pursuers are closing in when the powerful new Lord of Rankilburn bravely intervenes, then promises to help prove her marriage unlawful. Though fiercely loyal to her family, Molly fears they might harm the man she is coming to love, and now she must decide whether to remain faithful to her blood . . . or to her heart.

Barnes & Noble: link
Books-A-Million: link
IndieBound: link
GooglePlay: link
iTunes: link
Amazon: link


Amanda Scott is the author of over 61 romance novels and the recipient of the Romance Writers of America's prestigious RITA Award. She lives in Folsom, California, outside of Sacramento. She is a fourth-generation Californian.

Goodreads link

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/26635ce2106/" rel="nofollow">a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Weekly Winners

Hawaii Five O fans are winners with the return of McGarrett and Company.  Admittedly, the Season Five premiere was over the top ... but the scenery was gorgeous!   The episode opened along a trail atop Diamond Head.

We have winners at SOS Aloha ...

Lisa Sugarman's LIFE IT IS WHAT IT IS:
- Karen wins a print copy from me.


Amanda Forester's A WINTER WEDDING
- Sharlene wins a book choice from my convention stash.

Monday Night Romance - Every Day Heroes
- Mary Preston wins a book choice from my convention stash.

Rosanne Bittner's DESPERATE HEARTS
- Marcy wins a book choice from my convention stash.

Maggie Mae Gallagher's RUPTURED
- May wins a digital copy from Maggie.

From my travel blog, ALOHA ON MY MIND, Erin wins a book choice from my convention stash.

Winners, please claim your prize by sending your mailing address to sos.aloha@yahoo.com.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Coast Guard Lighthouse at the foot of Diamond Head

Friday, September 26, 2014

State of Romance - Wyoming

Devils Tower National Monument - Wyoming
Public Domain (link)

This week's State of Romance visits Wyoming at USA Today's HEA Blog at this link.    I discovered more romances set the Equality State:

Debra Mullins sizzles in DONOVAN'S BED in 1882 Wyoming. Isn't this cover gorgeous?  Learn more about her books at debramullins.com.


Joanne Kennedy offers contemporary cowboy romances ... check out her website, joannekennedybooks.com, to learn more about her hunky heroes! 


Lindsay McKenna - a Navy vet - takes a recovering Navy SEAL to a Wyoming ranch to tangle with a sexy nurse in WOLF HAVEN.   Mosey over to Lindsay's website, lindsaymckenna.com, for more about her Navy heroes!


What do you know about Wyoming?  Can you recommend a romance set in Wyoming?  One randomly selected commenter wins a book choice from my convention stash.  Comments are open through Saturday, October 4, 10 pm in Baltimore.   I'll post the winner on Sunday, October 5.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Garnet Canyon
Grand Teton National Park
National Park Service (link)

Aloha to Maggie Mae Gallagher and RUPTURED

Soldiers Make Me Swoon

by Maggie Mae Gallagher

I have always had a thing for men in uniform. What woman doesn’t? Although, I think it’s more than just the uniform or the fact that the men who wear them, happen to be in prime physical condition. There’s more to it than the cut of their dress blues or how well they wear their fatigues. I think part of what makes a man in uniform so attractive is what that uniform stands for. I’m talking about the things that make up a soldier, the honor they pride themselves on, the courage they imbue against mighty foes, and the brotherhood that the military creates.

It’s not only modern soldiers who have garnered my attention but warriors throughout history. Most people don’t know that I have a master’s degree in history. One of the areas in history that I have long been fascinated with was military history. I’ve studied ancient battles, the leaders, the various tactics, from the sacking of Rome to the trenches in World War I France. I think what has always fascinated me most, were the people, the soldiers, why they fought, and in many cases died for those causes, like in the case of Sullivan Ballou in the American Civil War. His poignant letter to his wife before he entered the field at the first Battle of Bull Run still brings me to tears every time I read it.

When it came time for me to build my paranormal world, it was not a far leap or any wonder that I chose to make my heroine a soldier amidst the backdrop of Armageddon, with a ton of superb male counterparts for her to choose from. In Ruptured, Alana is from a race of super-soldiers in a future where demons have terrorized much of the globe and her squad stands as some of humanity’s last hope for survival.

What are some of the things you like about men in uniform?

US Navy sailor in period costume
aboard the USS Constitution


It has been eighty-three years since the walls between Earth and Infernus fell, and now our world stands upon the razor’s edge of extinction. Demon platoons are marching upon us. My home, one of humanity’s last bastions of existence, is under siege.

My name is Alana Devereaux. I am the resident demon detector of Cantati Forces and Platoon Commander. My job is to hunt down the vermin unleashed upon my world, and I love it. I live for the day I can kick every last demon’s ass out of this world. Except as enemy forces reign down terror upon us, the Densare Council sentences me to a fate worse than death.
Available Now!

Amazon link 

Bestselling Author Maggie Mae Gallagher doesn’t remember a time when she wasn’t writing. When she was a kid she acted out her favorite scenes, only better, with her brother and cousin. As a teenager, she wrote reams of poetry, but realized her true love lay with creating characters and stories. A former music and history major, Maggie is a total geek at her core. When she is not writing, she adores attending the latest comic con or spending time with her family. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri, with her two furry felines. She can be reached at her website, her Facebook page, or on Twitter.

My children with a French Sailor at RimPac

Mahalo, Maggie, for sharing your admiration of military heroes!  Maggie is giving away an ecopy of RUPTURED to one randomly selected commenter.  To enter the giveaway,

1.  Answer Maggie's question, What are some of the things you like about men in uniform?

2.  Comments are open through Saturday, September 27, 10 pm in Baltimore.

3.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, September 28.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

My children with a Russian sailor at RimPac 12

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Aloha to Tracey Devlin and NIGHT STORM

Book One, Bones and Gemstones series

A promising young apothecary picks up the pieces of her life, only to collide with the ruthless thief-taker who once shattered her dreams and her heart.

When the love of his life chose an apprenticeship in Scotland over his marriage proposal, thief-taker Cameron Adair buried himself in his work--building an unmatched network of underworld spies. Forged by his reputation as a ruthless, greed-driven businessman, he has amassed a fortune. But he has one vulnerable spot in his armor--a brilliant, green-eyed apothecary, who continues to haunt his heart. When a murder investigation brings him back into contact with Charlotte Fielding, Cameron sets aside the past to find a killer and to distract a headstrong apothecary, clue by clue, kiss by kiss.

Amazon: link
ARe: link
B&N: link
Google: link

Also, for a limited time, Tracey will be giving away the first short story she ever published—HIS SECRET DESIRE—re-edited and re-packaged with a beautiful new cover. FREE for a LIMITED TIME at the following locations.

Amazon: link
Barnes & Noble: link
iTunes: link
Kobo: link
All Romance: link
Google: link

Tracey Devlyn is an award-winning author who writes historical romantic thrillers (translation: a slightly more grievous journey toward the heroine’s happy ending). She’s a co-founder of Romance University, a group blog dedicated to readers and writers of romance, and Lady Jane’s Salon-Naperville, Chicagoland’s exciting new reading salon devoted to romantic fiction.

An Illinois native, Tracey spends her evenings harassing her once-in-a-lifetime husband and her weekends torturing her characters. For more information on Tracey, including her Internet haunts, contest updates, and details on her upcoming novels, please visit her website.

Connect with Tracey:

Site: traceydevlyn.com
Facebook: facebook.com/AuthorTraceyDevlyn
Twitter: twitter.com/TraceyDevlyn
Goodreads: link

Tracy offers an excerpt from NIGHT STORM:

In the distance, Charlotte Fielding spotted the simple, white-lettered sign that marked her destination. Apothecary. The tension she’d been carrying in her shoulders since entering the Whitley residence loosened its biting grip. The strain between husband and wife had not lifted in her two-day absence. If anything, it had grown worse, now that Mr. Whitley felt well enough to defend himself.

Charlotte’s brisk pace slowed. A man was slumped on the pavement between her shop and the boarded-up bakery next door. He sat with one leg stretched out across the walkway, the other bent at an angle. The rim of his hat protected his face from identification. So, too, did the long black woolen coat and matching muffler around his neck.

The tension in Charlotte’s shoulders returned full force. Even though she could not identify him, she knew what he wasn’t—a beggar. Everything about him was too fine for him to be living in the streets. She glanced around, checking the evening shadows as best she could with only lamplight to aid her. Anderson’s lending library, Patterson’s coffee shop, Gertrude’s lace boutique, Tilly’s former bakery—they all stood silent and free of loitering troublemakers and customers. If she cried out for help, would the shopkeepers hear her from their snug, upstairs apartments?

She considered entering through the back of her building, an area normally reserved for deliveries, but she couldn’t bring herself to venture down the dank, narrow alleyway at this time of night. Drawing in a calming breath, she reached into her reticule and pulled out her pouch of pepper. A poor defense, she knew, but she always kept it, thinking it would give her a small chance of escape if thrown in an assailant’s face.

Increasing her pace, she stopped in front of her shop’s weathered door, the color of a cloud-streaked blue sky. The man remained motionless, silent. Eerily so. She experienced a moment of indecision. Should she nudge him? Could he be hurt and in need of assistance? Or should she continue on inside her own shop and mind her own business?

“Hello, Charley.” The voice was unmistakable.

A chill started at the base of her neck and swept through her body. Bone deep and breath stealing. With slow, precise movements, her gaze lowered to the source of the too-familiar voice. A voice that belonged to the only man who had ever called her Charley.

The man’s uplifted face revealed itself. Thick, bold eyebrows stood out on a pale, pain-filled face. A once-beloved face. Cameron Adair. What little air she had left disappeared at the sight of Cam—Cameron. Other than a brief glimpse of him a few months ago, she hadn’t seen him for years. But she would have known him anywhere. The shock of seeing him held her immobile, terrified in a way she hadn’t been since the early days of their falling out.

“Charley, I need your help.”

His words, laced with a strain born of hard-fought control, snapped her out of the past and plunged her back into the present. Cameron Adair was sprawled at her door, hurt, needing her help.

She slid her key into the lock. Metal scratched against metal until she heard a familiar click. Setting her bag inside the door, she returned outside. “Are you able to get to your feet?” She managed to keep her voice calm, unaffected. But inside, a violent tremor began and a maelstrom of questions flooded her mind. Why come to her? Where was he hurt? Why show up on her doorstep after complete and utter silence for five miserable years?

Carefully, she folded her hands at her waist and locked her knees before she could humiliate herself with senseless emotion. She had decided long ago to waste no more of it on Cameron Adair.

Something like disappointment flared in his blue, ice-chipped eyes. “Yes, with assistance.”

“Where are you hurt?”

“Left leg, right shoulder.”

“Let’s get you inside out of the cold, and I’ll hail a hansom cab to take you to Dr. Hollingsworth.”

He shook his head and mumbled, “I’ve been shot. Lost too much blood.”

"Cameron, I can’t—”

“You must,” he interrupted. “I haven’t the strength to go elsewhere.”

She knew what it had cost him to admit to such weakness. And because she knew this about him, an unrivaled fear forced her to his side.

Positioning herself in a crouch, Charlotte took a steadying breath before sliding her arm around his broad back. Blood, sweat, and a masculine scent uniquely Cameron’s filled her nose. She gritted her teeth against an overwhelming desire to inhale deeply.

“Ready?” she asked.

He nodded once, his full lips pressed into a thin, determined line. Bending forward, he wrapped an arm around her shoulder to brace himself. The new position put them face-to-face, breath-to-breath.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Aloha to Rosanne Bittner and DESPERATE HEARTS

ALOHA! Rosanne Bittner, here, in reply to your invitation to visit your blog. Thanks so much, and I hope you will all pick up a copy of my September book, DESPERATE HEARTS! It’s a great “wild-west” action romance set in the little gold town of Alder, Montana, and you will love the hero, Mitch Brady, a vigilante who is tough on the outside but so caring on the inside.

DESPERATE HEARTS is my 59th published novel. I’ve been writing over 30 years and have won numerous writing awards. Most of my books are about America’s Old West of the 1800’s, an era of unbelievable growth in America, and packed with food for plot, from the building of the Transcontinental Railroad to the discovery of gold, the settlement of endless untamed country, battles with Native Americans (and I’ve written stories about the history of Native Americans, told mostly from their point of view), the Mexican War, and even the Civil War touched on the West. I have also written about the French & Indian Wars, the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, and border wars that took place between states before the breakout of the Civil War. My goal has always been to relate real American history through fictitious characters in an exciting way, and from reader feedback I receive, I know I have accomplished that goal.

“What makes Montana the perfect backdrop for a western romance?”

Oh, gosh, that’s easy! It’s gorgeous!!! What better setting for sweeping romance than the equally sweeping splendor of America’s Rocky Mountains? I have traveled the West so often that I can actually tell, in a movie, where it is set. Some people might think that all mountains out west look the same, but no, they definitely do not! My favorite western state is Colorado, and that state as well as Wyoming and Montana are the three best when it comes to magnificent landscapes. In Montana the mountains just seem – how do I put this? – more GRAND!

To me the Rockies are like the bastions of the West – bold, forbidding, daring, undefeatable – much like we want our western heroes to be. They are tough, able with fists and gun, cunning, survivors, and in the case of my heroes, always respectful of women. They love to the very fiber of their being and are loyal and protective. I guess in the end I’d have to say I like Montana because it reminds me of the perfect hero – and it presents formidable challenges for a man and woman in love who must face danger together. That’s the primary theme of most of my books. I wrote a big family saga a few years ago called WILDEST DREAMS, about a young couple who settles in Montana and all the dangers they face together through their years of loving and surviving in an untamed land. Sourcebooks has reissued that book in print and as an e-book, so you might want to pick that one up, too, if you like reading about Montana.

Thank you so much for asking me to comment on your blog! I hope you will visit mine at rosannebittner.blogspot.com. And check out my web site at rosannebittner.com. I am also on Facebook and Twitter and Google and Amazon and Goodreads and many other places on the internet. Most of my books are still available in print, including a lot of my older titles, some of which have been reissued with new covers and are now available also as e-books!

Happy reading!

Public Domain (link)

Elizabeth Wainwright is on the run. Accused of a murder she didn’t commit, she has no choice but to cut ties with her old life and flee West. The last thing she wants is attention, but when her stagecoach is attacked, she suddenly finds herself under the fierce protection of one of Montana’s famed vigilantes…whether she likes it or not.

Lawman Mitch Brady is sworn to uphold justice. He’s never met a man he’s feared, and he’s never met a woman more desperately in need of his help. Something’s shaken the secretive Elizabeth, but as he gets to know the beautiful city belle, he finds the only thing he wants more than her safety…is her trust. Elizabeth longs to give herself to Mitch, but when her past finally catches up with her, can she truly trust her life to the vigilante who’s stolen her heart?

Amazon: link
BAM: link
B&N: link
Chapters: link
IndieBound: link
iTunes: link
Kobo: link

Rosanne Bittner is an award-winning novelist who is highly acclaimed for her thrilling love stories and historical authenticity. Her epic romances span the West—from Canada to Mexico, Missouri to California—and are often based on personal visits to each setting. She lives in Michigan with her husband and two sons. You can find her at rosannebittner.com.

I am giving away a "Hearts" swag bag to one randomly selected commenter.  To enter the giveaway,

1.  Leave a comment about Montana - what do you about the "Big Sky Country" state?

2.  Comments are open through Saturday, September 27, 10 pm in Baltimore.  

3.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, September 28.


Kim in Baltimore

Aloha  Spirit in Charm City

Public Domain (link)

Monday, September 22, 2014

Aloha to Merryn Allingham and THE CRYSTAL CAGE

British author Merryn Allingham joins us today for a cozy chat about THE CRYSTAL CAGE:

Appearances don’t always reveal the truth. Grace Latimer knows this better than most. Illusions of commitment and comfort have her trapped—until bohemian adventurer Nick Heysham charms his way into her world. Commissioned to recover a Great Exhibition architect’s missing designs, he persuades her to assist in his research. The mystery of the Crystal Palace seduces Grace, and once she discovers clues about a forbidden Victorian love affair, she’s lured into the deep secrets of the past…secrets that resemble her own.

As Grace and Nick dig into the elusive architect’s illicit, long-untold story, the ghosts of guilt and forbidden passion slip free. And history is bound to repeat itself, unless Grace finds the courage to break free and find a new definition of love…

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Kim:  Thank you for your father's service. I am jealous that you lived in Egypt. Can you share a favorite memory?

Merryn:  Yes, my father was an officer in the Royal Artillery. I think my most vivid memory of Egypt is of an ordinary summer day, though for a child brought up in England, it was far from ordinary. For a start, school was open for only half a day, from eight in the morning until midday, when it became too hot to do anything as difficult as learn. After lunch was snooze time, for my parents at least. For me it was reading book after book – anything I could get my hands on - beneath a whirring ceiling fan and with a bar of Fry’s chocolate in my hand. It always had to be peppermint cream. Then it was off to swim in the very salty waters of the Great Bitter Lake, a part of the Suez Canal. I do remember that the walk home was blissfully cool.

Kim:  Readers will be envious of your travels while working in the airline industry. Do you draw on any of those experiences for your writing?

Merryn:  I haven’t so far, though I’ve plenty of material for future books. I guess that living in a country so full of history, it’s tempting not to stray far beyond its borders. However, I am venturing further afield with the trilogy I’ve just completed. In this case, it’s my parents’ travels that have inspired me. Just before the Second World War, my mother boarded a troop ship in Southampton bound for India, and married my father in Bombay (as it was then called). At the time, they hadn’t seen each other for six whole years. A true romance!

Kim:  Who or what helped you along the path to publishing?

Merryn:  I taught English Literature for years and I suppose that was a help in getting my first novel down on the page. In some ways, though, it was a hindrance too. Putting pen to paper is daunting when for years you’ve taught only the very best in writing. I got over that by writing in a genre that I knew and loved – Regency romance – and once my book was finished, I looked around for a publisher. You can see that I wasn’t terribly well organised! Harlequin are one of the few that welcome unsolicited manuscripts, so I submitted the novel to them and was thrilled when it was accepted. Since then, I haven’t stopped writing.

Kim:  Tell us about THE CRYSTAL CAGE - what inspired it?

Merryn:  Grace, the modern day heroine of The Crystal Cage, is at a crossroads in her life. Despite a smart home, a seemingly caring partner and a job that keeps her busy, she’s dissatisfied.The house isn’t hers, she finds her work tedious and she’s beginning to feel uncomfortably controlled by her partner. When Nick Heysham catapults into her life with a request that she help him complete a contract, she is ready to listen. Nick has been commissioned to find plans drawn for the Great Exhibition by Lucas Royde, the most influential of Victorian architects. At the same time, a trifling and apparently unrelated job – the haunting of a former school room - lands in her lap. By the end of the novel, Grace has uncovered connections that have stayed hidden for a century and a half. She has discovered, too, that a past tragedy has uncomfortable echoes for her own life.

There wasn’t one particular event or place that inspired the book. The idea of a glass cage through which women see the world, but which prevents them from actually living freely must have come from my unconscious. Perhaps it’s better not to enquire further! And the Crystal Palace was a magnificent setting for the Victorian love affair – original pictures of the building have a romance and colour to them. I have a fabulously detailed print on the wall of my writing room which shows the Inauguration Ceremony in all its glamour.

Kim:  What's next for Merryn Allingham?

Merryn:  I have a new contract with MIRA for a trilogy set in the 1930s and 1940s. The three books cover a period of ten years and move between India and wartime England. They follow the fortunes of Daisy Driscoll, a working class girl from London. Daisy has been brought up in an orphanage and her life has been hard and lonely. When she meets and falls in love with a young Indian Army officer on leave in London, it seems an impossible dream has come true. She is thrilled to be marrying a handsome cavalryman, thrilled to be travelling to India. But she soon discovers her bridegroom isn’t what he appears and instead of the happiness she’d imagined, she is faced with deception and danger and forced to call on every ounce of courage to survive. The next two books present her with new mysteries and new challenges. All three are connected by characters who appear in one or other of them, and through Daisy’s attempts to discover her identity and to find true love. You’ll be glad to know, I’m sure, that she gets her happy ending!

Mahalo, Merryn, for sharing your wealth of experience! 

Connect with Merryn Allingham on Facebook and Goodreads.   

Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Follow along the blog tour:

Monday, September 15
Review at To Read or Not to Read
Spotlight at Flashlight Commentary
Spotlight & Excerpt at Romantic Historical Reviews

Tuesday, September 16
Review at A Bookish Affair
Excerpt at Casual Readers

Wednesday, September 17
Excerpt at CelticLady’s Reviews
Interview at What Is That Book About

Thursday, September 18
Review at Turning the Pages

Friday, September 19
Review at Queen of All Reads
Excerpt at Just One More Chapter

Monday, September 22
Review at Bibliotica
Spotlight at Layered Pages

Tuesday, September 23
Interview at SOS Aloha
Spotlight at Historical Fiction Connection

Wednesday, September 24
Excerpt at Passages to the Past

Thursday, September 25
Review at Oh, for the Hook of a Book
Excerpt at Princess of Eboli

Friday, September 26
Review at Unshelish
Spotlight at Let Them Read Books

Wednesday, October 15
Review at The Worm Hole

Monday Night Romance with Tracy Solheim - Every Day Heroes

We're on Week Three with our special column for USA Today's HEA Blog.  Tracy and I planned this venture back in July, not realizing that we would land in the middle of a controversy.   So our column today addresses players as heroes at this 

For SOS Aloha, I'd rather talk about the heroes who walk among us in everyday life.   The chorus director at my church bubbles with energy in making a joyful noise.   My son's math teacher stays after school with the engineering club so the students embrace the technology of the future.   Parents lead the Scouts in volunteering with Honor Flight to welcome WWII Veterans at the BWI airport.   

These are the heroes in my life.

Honor Flight received a water salute upon
landing at BWI airport

Speaking of Boy Scouts, our troop lost a devoted leader when James Robinson suddenly passed away this past summer.  From his obituary, 

Outside of work, Jim was a pillar of his community, taking leadership roles in numerous church and civic organizations. He served as Scoutmaster and Assistant Scoutmaster of BSA Troop 424, Savage, MD, President of the Potomac-Patuxent Chapter of Trout Unlimited, a member of Project Healing Waters, and on countless boards and committees at Emmanuel United Methodist Church in Scaggsville. 

Mr. Robinson was also an Army veteran and father of a Marine veteran.  He often closed our troop meeting with a "scoutmaster moment", sharing words to inspire the scouts.  At the Scout meeting following his funeral, another troop leader shared a quote which so aptly described Mr. Robinson:

"What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us. What we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal." Albert Pike

Who do you admire as a hero?  One randomly selected commenter wins a book choice from my convention stash.   Comments are open through Saturday, September 27, 10 pm in Baltimore.   I'll post the winner on Sunday, September 28.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Learn more about Honor Flight at honorflight.org

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Aloha to Amanda Forester and A WINTER WEDDING

What Every Regency Miss Needs to Know

A Letter from Miss Penelope Rose, Regency Matchmaker

Dear Friend,

I am so glad you have written to me to tell me of your recent arrival in London this chilly December, 1810. It seems London is more occupied than usual for this time of year due to the early opening of Parliament. I remember my first few months in London when my sisters and I arrived two years ago. Such a dizzying array of amusements! Some lessons, though, were painfully learned and I hope you will not reproach me for a few words of advice from your dearest friend as you enter your first London season.

First, your primary aim upon entering the season is to find a husband. Forgive such a blunt assertion, but I believe in plain speaking. You will be judged primarily by two men in your life–your father and your husband. I am not saying it is right, mind you, personally I find it perfectly ridiculous to weigh the worth of a lady by her connections, but this is the world we live in and we must make the best of it. Your excellent father we cannot do anything about, but your husband is entirely up to you.

I know some ladies will recommend you keep a pretty face, say as little as possible, and let the gentlemen decide whether or not to propose. But of course this is all nonsense. Let the men decide? They have had the run of human governance for hundreds of years now and look what a mess they have made of it. No, you must take your own destiny in hand and lead the course of human affection in its proper direction. Not to say that you cannot fall in love. Only take care to fall in love with a man of good character–and if you can manage it– of healthy fortune.

Unfortunately, due to the war, gentlemen are admittedly scarce, and ones of excellent character and modest habits are doubly difficult to find. Fortunately, in the course of providing assistance to my sisters I have augmented my copy of Debrett's Peerage to include much of what you will need to know in choosing a happy mate. The Dowager Duchess of Marchford, for whom I am now employed as her companion, has suggested we go into business using this book as the basis of a matchmaking enterprise under the name of Madam X. I shall rely on your discretion in this matter, for if the haute ton discovered the matchmaker is none other than myself, it should be such a scandal!

Of course you may have noticed that I myself remain unwed. For good or for ill, it seems I can only use my powers of matchmaking for the good of others and not myself. I am completely resigned now to a life of spinsterhood. Perhaps it is best, for my forthright nature may not have made me a good marriage partner for any but the most self-assured of men. This paragon of manhood I have yet to find, or at least if I have found him, he remains beyond my touch. But enough of such maudlin musings!

Might I suggest you come to tea and we can find you a few candidates for the perfect groom? I hope you will not find this too forward a suggestion, but I believe we can have you credibly settled within a few months if we act decisively. Naturally, we must always act with a high regard to decorum, but I have found a gentleman's affection can be directed down a proper path with some assistance. Of course we must allow the gentlemen to believe they actions were entirely of their own decision, otherwise they become obstinate and difficult to manage.

I must dash for the Duke of Marchford is calling for me. You may think it strange, but I have occasionally been of use to him in his investigations with the Foreign Office. I confess I have enjoyed these excursions more than I should, though whether I enjoy the activity or the duke more, it is difficult to say.

Love and affection,


Ps. Please burn this letter upon receipt. I have glanced over it and realize it would be disastrous were it fall into the wrong hands. I shall rely upon your discretion!

Read more about Penelope and Marchford, in A Winter Wedding now available. To get you started in the series, the first book in the trilogy, Wedding in Springtime is being offered FREE for a limited time, and Midsummer Bride is currently only $1.99.

This adventurous duke...

The Duke of Marchford requires a suitable bride, but catching spies for the Foreign Office takes up most of his time. Not wanting to face another London season as an eligible man, he employs the notorious Madame X to find him a match.

Has met his match

Miss Penelope Rose knows the rules of marriage among members of the ton better than most. Her own unsuccessful attempts at matrimony did not stop her from becoming London’s most exclusive matchmaker. Marchford proves to be a difficult client, but as he draws on her social expertise to help him flush out a dangerous traitor, they find that falling in love may be the riskiest adventure of all.

Buy Links:

Amazon: link
Apple: link
BAM: link
B&N: link
Chapters: link
IndieBound: link
Kobo: link

Amanda Forester holds a Ph.D. in psychology and worked for many years in academia before discovering that writing historical romance novels was decidedly more fun. Whether in the Highland hills or a Regency ballroom, Forester’s critically acclaimed novels offer fast-paced adventures filled with wit, intrigue, and romance. She lives with her supportive husband and naturally brilliant children in the Pacific Northwest.

Amanda loves to hear from readers so visit her at her websiteFacebook, or Twitter

Mahalo, Penelope, for sharing your letter with my gentle readers!  Check out my review of A WINTER WEDDING at this link.   I am giving away a book choice from my convention stash to one randomly selected commenter.  To enter the giveaway,

1.  What do you like about Winter?

2.  Comments are open through Saturday, September 27, 10 pm in Baltimore.   

3.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, September 28.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City