Thursday, October 19, 2017

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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

DEATH OF A KONA MAN



Death of the Kona Man
Aloha Lagoon Mysteries Book 9
by
Catherine Bruns
Genre:
Cozy Mystery

INTERVIEW WITH CATHERINE BRUNS

What are your top 10 favorite books/authors?

Agatha Christie, Sue Grafton, Janet Evanovich, Louisa May Alcott, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Stephen King, Harper Lee, Mary Higgins Clark, KM Peyton.

What inspired you to write this book?

My publisher had the idea for a multi author series in Hawaii. I've been there twice and it's a favorite vacation destination so of course I was definitely in!

What can we expect from you in the future?

My next book scheduled for release is Silenced by Sugar and it comes out January 16, 2018. It is the fifth book in my USA Today best selling Cookies & Chance series about a woman who runs a bakery in Western New York that serves up fortune cookies with a side of foreshadowing. There's yummy recipes in that series as well as the Carrie Jorgenson books too!

Do you have any “side stories” about the characters?

Not about the characters per say but the concept for this particular series came from a play I wrote and directed for my senior project in college, over twenty something (mumble) years ago, lol.

Where were you born/grew up?

I grew up in Upstate New York and have lived there my entire life.

What makes a good story?

A writer needs to be passionate about their work and connect with their characters. A good plot is necessary as well.

How to find time to write as a parent?

I'm fortunate that I didn't start writing aggressively until my children were grown. I admire writers who can do it with small children in the house - I'm not sure that I could!

What made you want to become an author and do you feel it was the right decision?

Since I was eight years old, I have always wanted to be a writer. I think it's just something that you're born with.

Advice they would give new authors?

Build your platform so more readers can find you.

What are they currently reading?

The Marriage Lie by Kimberly Belle.

How long have you been writing?

Since I was eight years old.

sWhat is your writing process? For instance do you do an outline first? Do you do the chapters first

I do a rough outline and revise it a few times. I pretty much write by the seat of my pants, so to speak. My mind tends to go in a different direction during the actual writing process so things don't always stay the same.

Can you tell us a little bit about the characters in DEATH OF THE KONA MAN?

DEATH OF THE KONA MAN is the second book in my Carrie Jorgenson Aloha Lagoon series. The first book is DEATH OF THE BIG KAHUNA but they can be read as stand alones. Carrie's from snowy Vermont and in the first book, she's just arrived on the island of Kauai. She's followed her boyfriend in an attempt to save their floundering relationship. She gets a job waitressing but has no previous experience. Her dream is to be an actress some day. Carrie's had a rough life so far but is determined to persevere. While waitressing at Loco Moco Café, she meets the hot assistant manager Keanu Church. Keanu has an enormous heart and sparks fly between them from the beginning. In DEATH OF THE KONA MAN, their relationship grows closer.

Do the characters all come to you at the same time or do some of them come to you as you write?

Always at different times. Some are outlined before, and some come to me during the actual writing process.

What kind of research do you do before you begin writing a book?

I hate research, lol! I'm fortunate that I have several contacts who help me out, a retired police Captain, my former real estate manager and a few people in the medical field. Even though these are cozy mysteries and you can suspend belief somewhat, I like my books to be accurate and realistic.

Describe yourself in 5 words or less!

Impatient, passionate, stubborn, determined (sensing a pattern here, lol?)

What did you enjoy most about writing this book?

The fact that the Aloha Lagoon series is set in Hawaii makes it so much more fun. I love my characters so every time I write a book in this series it feels like I'm coming home.

Who designed your book covers?

The entire Aloha Lagoon set of covers was designed by Estrella Designs but I have another artist for my two separate series.

Do you see writing as a career?

Absolutely.

Anything specific you want to tell your readers?

I love to hear from readers. It's such a joy to know that my book has provided entertainment for a few hours so thank you so much for taking the time to read my work!



From USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bruns 
comes the next deadly
delicious Carrie Jorgenson adventure in paradise...

Carrie Jorgenson is living the dream in Hawaii. 
She has a steady job as a
waitress at the Loco Moco Café, a hot new love interest in her
manager, and the curtain’s about to rise on her role in a local
theater production. But when she's asked to deliver food to a guest
at the Aloha Lagoon resort—who then drops dead!—her dreams
quickly become the stuff of nightmares. 

World renowned food critic Randolph Cremshaw
has no shortage of enemies.
He's rude, patronizing, and famous for his one-star reviews. After
the coffee Carrie delivers is discovered to have been poisoned, she
and the café quickly rise to the top of the suspects list. A jealous
co-worker, thefts at the restaurant, and a performance that threatens
to blow up in Carrie's face only make things worse. With an already
full plate, Carrie is also forced into making a decision that may
change everything for her. But this all pales in comparison when she
comes face to face with Randolph's killer and what might be the final
curtain call…of her life. 

Recipes
included! 



**Suggested
to Read DEATH OF THE BIG KAHUNA first!**

**On sale from Oct 10th - 17th!**




About Aloha Lagoon:

**Books can be read in any order and they're from multiple authors!**


There's
trouble in paradise...


Welcome
to Aloha Lagoon, one of Hawaii's hidden treasures. A little bit of
tropical paradise nestled along the coast of Kauai, this resort town
boasts luxurious accommodation, friendly island atmosphere...and only
a slightly higher than normal murder rate. While mysterious
circumstances may be the norm on our corner of the island, we're
certain that our staff and Lagoon natives will make your stay in
Aloha Lagoon one you will never forget! visit us at
www.alohalagoonmysteries.com



The
Aloha Lagoon Mysteries:


Ukulele Murder (book #1)


Murder on the Aloha Express (book #2)
Deadly Wipeout (book #3)

Deadly Bubbles in the Wine (book #4)
Mele Kalikimaka Murder (book #5)
Death of the Big Kahuna (book #6)

Ukulele Deadly (book #7)

Bikinis & Bloodshed (book #8)

Death of the Kona Man (book #9)


DEATH OF A KONA MAN Excerpt:
Randolph stepped back so that I could roll the cart inside. He was dressed in a dingy white undershirt and black slacks that dragged on the floor, his long, narrow bare feet poking out from underneath. I tried hard not to stare at the crusted-over toenails that screamed fungus at me.
"Welcome to my parlor, said the spider to the fly."

Yikes. For some reason, the word icky popped into my head. "Please enjoy your breakfast, sir. You can place the cart in the hallway when you're done, and one of our staff will pick it up later."

I began to walk away, and he grabbed me by the wrist. "Not so fast."

Startled by his action, I shook myself loose. "Don't touch me again."

"Sorry." Randolph gave a small smirk that said he was anything but sorry. He looked me up and down. "I'd like you to wait a moment until I'm sure the meal is to my liking."

I had news for this man—no meal was ever going to be to his liking. He lifted the covers off the plates one by one, examining the food while he grunted in apparent satisfaction. Finally, he picked up the white coffee carafe, poured himself a cup, and sniffed. Like the other day at the café, he took a small sip, grimaced, then shook his head at me. "Not quite, doll."

"Sir?" I was confused. Poncho had used his precious Kona beans this time, so what could be the problem? 

"It's cold. Bring me another carafe right away."

I couldn't believe my ears. Anger bubbled at the surface and threatened to boil over any second. What I really wanted to do was throw the entire carafe in his face, but then I'd be out of a job and, knowing Randolph, looking at a lawsuit.

"Is there a problem, dear?" 

The man clearly enjoyed the fact that he was goading me, but I was determined not to let him get under my skin. "No, sir. I'll be back in a few minutes."

"Text Chef Paunch ahead of time," Randolph taunted, "so that the coffee will be ready when you get back. That's a good little girl."

I bit into my lower lip to temper my reply. "His name is Poncho." 

"Whatever. He's got quite the paunch on him, so my name fits. And do hurry up. I haven't got all day." He sat down and started to eat, dismissing me with a wave of his hand.

Could the man be any more pretentious? I counted to ten and compressed my lips together, afraid a nasty comment might slip out between them. As I started toward the door, I spotted two half-filled mimosa glasses sitting on the table on the balcony. I wondered if good old Randy might have had a girl over last night—or perhaps his estranged wife had joined him. 

"Are you deaf?" Randolph bellowed. "I want my coffee—now!" 

With great effort, I opened the door to the suite and managed to refrain from slamming it behind me. On my way back down the hallway toward the elevator, I grabbed my phone out of my jeans pocket. My fingers flew as I texted Vivian. 

Tell Poncho that the jerk said the coffee's not hot enough. Have a new carafe ready to go when I get back. It's a wonder no one has killed this guy yet.




Catherine
is the USA Today best selling author of the Cookies & Chance
mysteries. She lives in New York with her very patient husband, three
sons, and assorted cats and dogs. Catherine has a B.A. in English and
is a former newspaper reporter and press release writer. She also
writes the Cindy York and the Aloha Lagoon (Carrie Jorgenson)
mysteries. Her next Cookies Chance mystery, SILENCED BY SUGAR,
releases in January 2018.



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Monday, October 16, 2017

INTERVIEW WITH LAUREAN BROOKS!

Today I’m pleased to have as my guest Laurean Brooks. She was brave enough to let me interview her. Here’s the result:

Please tell us about growing up.

I was terribly shy and a bit of a tomboy as a child. My siblings and I swung on a Tarzan-type rope hung high up in the giant oak tree, and rolled one another down the hill in a barrel. When the teacher called on me to answer a question, my face burned. The other kids turned to stare as if they'd never seen a beet-red face.

I grew up on a Tennessee farm, the fourth of seven children. We were given responsibilities at an early age. Taking care of livestock, cutting firewood, raising three gardens and 10 acres of corn (which we planted, hoed, and harvested) were a few outdoor chores we performed.

My sister and I were given assigned cooking, making the family's beds and helping Mama on wash day. We hung clothes on the wire lines Daddy had strung from post to post in the backyard, while Mama ran the clothes through the wringer washing machine.
Having few material things forced my siblings and me to be creative. My sister, Jewell, and I cut children models from the Sears catalog for our paper dolls. We spent countless hours putting on play productions, using them as our cast.

She and I would also select a book then take turns picking out 10 words from which to create a funny story. I guess this was how my love of writing began. And I still include humor in all my stories.

My brother Ralph, a few years older, had a gift for carpentry. When he was 14, he nailed together a sled from scrap lumber. It was too heavy to slide on soft snow the first winter, but when the snow became deep and packed the following winter, it sailed. A tree root halfway down the hill in our woods became a launching ramp. When the sled struck the root and it became airborne, we would hang on for dear life.It would end up sometimes in the creek at the foot of the hill.

Ralph would also take the younger ones on long walks through the woods. One day he took us to an old deserted two-story house. He told us it might be haunted, and to slip in quietly. My sister and younger brother did as told. We entered the kitchen. Inside was a table, an old wood cook stove and a few dishes, as if someone might be living there. In the corner sat a trunk. We opened the lid and found stacks of pictures inside. After we became bored, it was time to investigate the upstairs.

With Ralph in front we started ascending. About halfway up the stairs, we heard a rush. Ralph turned around and frowned, “What was that?”

Two seconds later, a slew of bats flew down the stairs, over our heads. We tore out of that house as fast as our legs would carry us and never went returned.

Married, single? Children?

Today, I have been married to a flea-market loving, auction-hopping man for 28 years. The biggest part of our vacations are spent at yard sales or inside antique/junk stores. We collectively have three children. All are grown and married. My husband has 4 grandchildren and I have one granddaughter.


Tux has cat-itude!


When you’re not writing, what’s your favorite way to relax and recharge?

We are Daddy and Mama to two Labrador Retrievers and a black cat. I take daily walks with the dogs and cat, weather permitting. The cat tags along, depending on his mood on that particular day. He has a cat-itude at times.


Riley

Spence


How long have you been writing?

I've been published 8 years, writing since I was 10. My first essay in 5th grade got me in trouble. Miss Mary did not appreciate my version of Columbus's expedition to the New World. I read it to the class. They went into hysterics over the scene where the natives stuffed Columbus into a cannon then shot him back across the ocean. But Miss Mary did not see the humor in it. She demanded a “more realistic” rewrite. I did the rewrite, but my classmates' eyes glazed over as I read it aloud.

Where do you prefer to write? Do you need quiet, music, solitude? PC or laptop?

I need solitude and quiet. Soft music seems to help. Sometimes I write from my computer desk. But when on a deadline, I take my laptop into the bedroom, close the door, get comfortable in the recliner, and write from there.

Are you a plotter or a pantser?

A pantser who wants to become a plotser (a cross between the two.) I don't want a strict outline, since my story tends to take off in a different direction than I mentally planned. But I have seriously considered jotting down a loose outline that will change as I get into the story. The outline would start me at point A (the beginning), and take me to point Z (the planned ending). But B through Y (and everything in between) need to be flexible because my characters tend to take me in unpredictable directions.

Do you do your research before you begin a new project, or as you go along?

Both. Beforehand and as I go along. During research, I might find something of historical interest that will add flavor to the story.

Who is the most interesting secondary character you've written, and why?

Oscar Ellwood, III in JOURNEY TO FORGIVENESS was a spoiled, Mama's boy, lanky and skinny, buck-toothed and wore Coke-bottle thick glasses. Oscar was an intellectual know-it-all who pursued my heroine until my hero nipped it in the bud. The guy was hilarious. You never knew what he would do or say next. And when during the mission trip his teddy bear fell out of his bag... Well, I'll just quote what a reader said, “That Oscar was a hoot.”

Tell us something about yourself that might surprise readers.

By now you can tell I'm talkative and a people person. I love meeting people, learning about them as long as it's in a public setting. But I have a private side that demands I spend time alone. It is those times at home or during walks in the woods that ideas form for my next book.

What do you hope your writing brings to readers?

I would like my stories to entertain, to pull my readers into a different world. I want to take them on an emotional journey, make them cry and/or make them laugh. If the reader feels something and learns a life lesson from the story, it is worth the sweat and tears I've put into it.

What advice would you give to unpublished authors?

Do not get discouraged. If you have a story in you, write it. Stay away from dream stealers as much as possible. Surround yourself with upbeat people who have the same goals—preferably fellow writers. Study the craft of writing. Online creative writing courses helped encourage me. Once your manuscript is completed, let a friend who scored high in grammar proof it. Then send it to a qualified editor.

What has helped you in your writing career? Did you have a mentor?

I've had fellow writers who would not let me give up. At mid-point while writing my first book, I laid it aside for months. My friend, Deb, who I met on an online writing course, kept after me to pick it up again. I finally did a year later and finished the last half of the book in weeks. Deb is still an inspiration to me.

Seeking the Lord helps me stay centered. I ask for guidance each time I start a new book. “Lord, I'm writing for You. Let every story I write honor You, and anoint my words to help those struggling with similar problems to those of my characters.

Tell us about your latest release.

NOT WHAT HE ORDERED

Blurb:

When Carrie Franklin's struggle with a drunk leaves him unconscious or perhaps dead, she flees. Forgetting the promise she made to her deceased mother, she catches the train to Abilene, leaving her feckless brother behind.

Carrie shares a seat with a young woman who confides she's a mail order bride en route to meet her fiancé. Molly's friend had also planned to be part of this adventure. But without warning Katy Davis changed her mind.

When Carrie mentions she will disembark in Abilene, Molly asks a favor. “Please explain Katy's absence to the man Katy promised to wed. It would be awful if he waited at the depot for hours.”

Wrought through a misunderstanding and her empty purse, Carrie finds herself headed toward the Kramer Ranch with Josh Kramer under the assumed name Katy Davis.

When Carrie learns through Josh's aunt that he believes she's the domestic help, Carrie realizes she had dug herself into a pit. Aunt Em will suffer if she reveals her identity.

Suspicious of Katy, Josh still finds himself falling in love. Burned once, he's sworn, “Never again.” Then he sees Katy in a moonlight conversation with his new ranch hand and suspects the worst. Are they scheming to take the Kramer ranch?

If Carrie reveals her true identity it could destroy any feelings Josh may have for her. Can Josh ever forgive her? Did Carrie kill the drunk? Is a posse trailing her? Only through God's grace can bring forgiveness and ensure a future for Carrie and Josh.

NOT WHAT HE ORDERED Excerpt:

The drunk fingered a lock of Carrie's hair. “Treat Big Jim nice and he'll show you a night you'll not likely forgit.”

He traced her jawline with a callused thumb. “Smooth as silk. Mmm, Mmm, you sure are a cute little thang. How about a little kiss for a lonely ol' man?”

Carrie flung his hand from her face. She'd never been mauled by a man and didn't aim for this to be the first time.

Big Jim dragged her closer. “You're a feisty one. What's wrong, Big Jim ain't good enough fer ya?” His hairy arm snaked around her waist, yanking her closer, and smashing her face into his sweaty shirt. If she quit struggling, maybe he would loosen his grip. Carrie paused to catch her breath and to plan her next move.

Big Jim mistook her pause for surrender. “That's more like it, gal. Just relax and give Big Jim that kiss he's been wantin'.” He slackened his hold and lowered his head. The coarse stubble of his beard stung Carrie's cheek.

Anger and adrenaline raced through her. She pushed against him, then raised her foot and kicked him in the shin.

“Ow-w-w!” He let go and hopped around on one foot, cursing under his breath. “You little wench! You'll pay!”

The menacing gleam in his eye told Carrie it was now or never. Before he could grab her again, she shoved against him. The big oaf stumbled backward to the edge of the boardwalk, flailing his arms as he hit the ground with a thud.

Carrie clenched onto the support post, a hand pressed to her pounding heart. Big Jim lay spread-eagle, flat on his back in the dusty street. A rock lay beneath his head under the dim street light. He was not moving.

Buy links are:

How can readers learn more about you?

Laurean Brooks, Author


The link to my author page, where readers can view all my books is:

My blog: Laurean's Lore: http://laureanslore.blogspot.com   






Friday, October 13, 2017

HALLOWEEN IS MURDER!


 

Beware of all that goes bump in the night…Sean and Sara McKinley are excited about the haunted house they’ve set up as a Halloween charity fund-raiser, but things take a ghoulish turn when the reporter covering their story is found dead. With the media keeping mum about how she died, Sara’s curiosity is piqued, and she convinces Sean to take on the investigation through their PI firm.

But this case is not without its challenges. The police are actively investigating it, as well, and it’s not even clear that the woman was murdered. It will take a little cloak-and-dagger, dress-up, and finesse for the McKinleys to get to the bottom of it, but they aren’t the kind to give up.

As they troll for leads and work through the skeletons in the reporter’s closet, they unearth a few suspects, but they’ll need to carve out the whole truth if they’re going to find her killer. If they do so fast enough, there might even be time for a little trick-or-treating.

 You can buy Halloween is Murder wherever books are sold, including the following popular retailers:

To find out more about Halloween is Murder and the other installments in the McKinley Mysteries series, including box sets, visit CarolynArnold.net/Mckinley-Mysteries.


About the McKinley Mysteries:

Romance. Humor. Murder. Are you looking for a murder mystery without all the graphic violence and foul language? Something that you can enjoy in an afternoon and walk away feeling good about afterward? How about a dash of humor and romance? If so, meet former detectives Sean and Sara McKinley. When a billionaire leaves them all his money, they no longer have to work, but they find themselves sticking to what they’re good at—solving murders. Undercover, off the books, and around the world, they’ll get to the bottom of things…and romance it up along the way.



This is the perfect book series for fans of Hart to HartCastleColomboMonkRockford FilesPsych, and Magnum PI.


About the Author

Carolyn Arnold is an international bestselling and award-winning author, as well as a speaker, teacher, and inspirational mentor. She has four continuing fiction series and has written nearly thirty books. Both her female detective and FBI profiler series have been praised by those in law enforcement as being accurate and entertaining, leading her to adopt the trademark, POLICE PROCEDURALS RESPECTED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT™.

Connect with CAROLYN ARNOLD Online:

Website | Twitter | Facebook


 And don’t forget to sign up for her newsletter for up-to-date information on release and special offers at

http://carolynarnold.net/newsletters.

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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

HONOURABLE LIES




Honourable Lies
by
Fran Connor
Genre:
Historical Romance


Victorian England with its hypocritical mores, a poor orphan girl elevated to High Society where she learns how to be a 'Lady', a handsome and wealthy love interest and a dastardly baddie combine to make this Romantic Thriller a page turner that you won't put down. The road up from the gutter is long; the way back may be quicker unless Victoria can outwit her Nemesis and overcome her jealousy.

HONOURABLE LIES Excerpt:

Humphreys stood at the main door on the top step. A carriage pulled by two horses halted on the drive.

Bonnie slipped by Humphreys and made her way to the bottom step. The carriage door opened and Victoria saw a tall young man with a shock of unruly black hair climb out and embrace Bonnie. He was indeed as handsome, perhaps more so than advertised.

The young man reached into the carriage and helped a young lady down the step. Penelope, said Victoria to herself. Next came an older woman. This must be Lady de Mornay. Richard held her hand as she descended from the carriage.

Bonnie hugged Penelope and Lady de Mornay. Richard and the three women climbed the steps.

A black riding boot with a brown top stepped down, followed by the rest of the man. Victoria gasped. She recognised him at once. She could see the ivory Chinaman’s head hanging from his watch chain. He stood on the gravel and then came up the steps behind his family.

He walked with a limp. A limp from when I stabbed him. Will he recognise me? She turned towards the house.

‘Do come in,’ said Bonnie, with her arms around the shoulders of Richard and Penelope.

‘And you can get out of the habit of inviting us into our own house,’ said Lord de Mornay.

Richard shot around, his face flushed and angry. ‘My house, not yours.’

Lord de Mornay huffed and puffed. Richard turned back to walk in with the two ladies.

Victoria looked at Humphreys. He seemed to be smiling as his eyes met those of Lady de Mornay, who quickly averted her gaze.




Fran Connor 

is British and lives in SW France with his wonderful wife Viv, their dog Molly and chickens.
 

He claims he's living in that area for the lifestyle and weather which he says helps an author's creative juices. It may just be an excuse to drink wine and lounge in the sun. He writes novels, nine published so far with two more coming out soon. In addition to novels, he also writes screenplays.





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Tuesday, October 10, 2017

THE CHRISTMAS WEDDING SWAP



THE CHRISTMAS WEDDING SWAP
by Allyson Charles

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GENRE: Small Town Contemporary Romance

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

THE CHRISTMAS WEDDING SWAP Blurb:

SOMETIMES YOU GET WHAT YOU NEED . . .

Allison Stuart has always been the odd-woman-out of her family. She wears her jeans a little too tight, colors her hair a little too blonde, and instead of going into medicine and law like her sisters, she runs a diner. She’s also the only single sibling left. And while she won’t change her style, and her meatloaf is to die for, thank you very much, she wouldn’t mind her share of wedded bliss. So she makes an early New Year’s resolution: No more meaningless flings.

Drop-dead sexy Luke Hamilton is everything Allison has sworn off. His only serious relationship has been with his five-star restaurant, Le Cygne Noir, in Chicago. When he’s threatened by a lawsuit, Luke decides to hide out in Pineville, Michigan, until the statute of limitations runs out. The small town is filled with Christmas charm, but he can’t imagine living there. Heating things up with the hottie who owns the local diner would make his exile bearable—if he can convince her to give up her ridiculous resolution . . .





THE CHRISTMAS WEDDING SWAP Excerpt:

“Is this restaurant a step down for you?” Allison asked sweetly. She twirled the tip of the cleaver in a circle. “Is my kitchen not up to your usual standards?”

Luke appeared to have more balls than brains. He stood firm. “A kitchen can always be improved. Yours is no exception.”

He was giving her an ulcer. Allison’s stomach grumbled in complaint, and she knew just how it felt. There were some things that just weren’t done, and criticizing your boss’s kitchen was one of them. “Hasn’t anyone ever taught you not to piss off a woman holding an eight-inch blade?”

“That’s a solid piece of advice,” Delilah said in agreement.

Luke threw his hands in the air. “Fine. I think you’re making a mistake, but it’s your restaurant.”

“I’m glad you remember that,” Allison said.

Luke’s lips twitched, and he rocked back onto his heels. “I’d heard your nickname was the Tyrant, but I couldn’t see it till now.”

Allison spluttered.

“I mean it as a compliment,” Luke said. “You don’t let anyone push you around. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.”

Luke traced a finger along the slick metal surface of the counter, his eyes hot, and Allison felt it as though his finger danced along her spine. She could see in his expression that he meant it. He did find her take-charge attitude a turn-on. And damn if that didn’t make her go a little weak in the knees. Still, she couldn’t let that claim go unchallenged.

“My name is n—”

“No?” Delilah jumped in.

Luke chuckled.

Allison’s jaw grew stiff. If she could incinerate people with the heat of her glare, her restaurant would be down two cooks. They’d be nothing but little piles of dust. “Not no. And not Tyrant. My employees love me.”

Peals of laughter rang through the kitchen.

Allison wagged the knife in the air. “Delilah, that advice about being nice to the woman holding a knife? It goes for you, too.” Spinning, she hammered the cleaver into her cutting board, the blade plunging a quarter inch into the wood. She stepped back, and the cleaver stood upright, quivering in its new slot. With a pointed look at her cooks, she stormed to her office.

The hoots of amusement behind her back rather diminished the effect of her exit.


Allyson Charles, Author


Allyson Charles lives in Northern California. She’s the author of the "Pineville Romance" series, small-town, contemporary romances published by Lyrical Press. A former attorney, she happily ditched those suits and now works in her pajamas writing about men’s briefs instead of legal briefs. When she’s not writing, she’s probably engaged in one of her favorite hobbies: napping, eating, or martial arts (That last one almost makes up for the first two, right?). One of Allyson’s greatest disappointments is living in a state that doesn’t have any Cracker Barrels in it.

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