APRIL SHOWERS ROMANCE GIVEAWAY

APRIL SHOWERS ROMANCE GIVEAWAY
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Monday, December 31, 2018

WELCOME 2019



Are you ringing in the New Year at a party or, like me, staying home with your loved one?  Hero and I will watch a movie, have hot chocolate (with marshmallows), and turn in before midnight.

Don't think we aren't appreciative of all we have, though. I'm certainly grateful for all the years I've been given with my real-life Hero, for our daughters, as well as the material blessings we've received. In 2019, I hope to write many more romances. In the meantime, thank you to those of you who read one or more of my books this year.


Friday, December 28, 2018

CHRISTMAS IN PRAGUE


Don't miss the Rafflecopter giveaway at the end of this post!



CHRISTMAS IN PRAGUE

Psychological Romance
Date Published: November 24, 2018
Publisher: Foolishness Press



 photo add-to-goodreads-button_zpsc7b3c634.png


Christmas in Prague is the story of Joseph, a divorced American twenty-something living as an expat in Prague. He's obsessed with Karina, a Czech waitress-turned-supermodel. She's freshly back from a trip to Italy with her English teacher, and she's ready to give Joseph the attention for which he's been longing. Will his Christmas wish come true?

CHRISTMAS IN PRAGUE Excerpt:

We came up out of Staroměstská metro station at the Kaprova exit. The air was clear and cold. A light snowfall had just started. Elijah and I are accosted on the sidewalk by three characters. The tallest one is dressed like a pope; tall red bishop’s hat, long white robe with a red silk stole to match. He’s carrying a crosier with a curved top like a question mark and ringing a bell. Saint Nicholas, obviously, the Greek bishop upon whom the Santa Claus legend is based. Another character is dressed all in white with a coat hanger halo, she is the Anděl (angel) I am told. She looks familiar, maybe one of the topless dancers at the place by the Charles Bridge, or a waitress at the Chapeau Rouge. Or maybe she just looks like one of those. The last character is the best - soot-covered face, hair sticking in all directions, limping along on one cloven hoof and one foot, wearing a brown fur jacket, dragging a chain and carrying a burlap sack. That is Čert or Krampus, a polymorphic figure, half-goat half-demon. The angel beamed, a bad girl hooking a sweet smile into us. I wondered if her blonde hair was a wig or not. I couldn’t tell. Krampus shouted in my face “Bububu!” and rattled his chain at me.

Mikuláš asked me a question in Czech. I told him I didn’t understand. Elijah translated, “He’s asking if you have been a good boy this year.” I put my hand on my chin and rolled my eyes heavenward. If I was not good, legend had it, Čert would take me in his sack and deliver me straight to hell. Krampus held his burlap sack open. He waved a piece of coal in my face. The angel in the push-up bra pushed forward, her hands folded together holding a basket of rock candy. A lace dress, sky blue eyeshadow and giant wings on her back. I reached out and took a piece of candy. Krampus rattled his chains in anger. They waited for me. I looked at Elijah. “You have to sing a song or recite a poem.” he said to me.

I said, “Kolo, rovno, hovno,” rolling the r in rovno as hard as my untrained tongue could. It’s a Czech rhyme that translates to “Bicycle, straight, shit.” Čert hopped up and down, one paw and one hoof, rattling his chains in glee. Mikuláš dismissed us with a wave of his holy hand. The angel took a long look at us before retreating.

“I don’t think they were impressed.” Elijah said. I unwrapped the hard candy and popped it in my mouth.

I should have said “Strč prst skrz krk”, a vowelless Czech tongue twister that translates to “Put your finger through your throat.” That would not have impressed either.



About the Author


Rick Pryll is an award-winning author and poet. His book, "The Chimera of Prague" was selected as the winner of the 2018 New York Book Festival for Romance. A graduate of MIT, Rick wrote a novella as the thesis for his Mechanical Engineering degree. Having grown up in Western New York State, Rick and his wife, ArtPop Charlotte 2018 artist Holly Spruck, live in Charlotte.  They have two children, two cats and a dog.

First published to the web in 1994, his hyperfiction short story “LIES” has garnered praise from the Wall Street Journal, SHIFT magazine, and several other publications in print and online.  It is cited in more than seven books, has been translated into Spanish and Chinese.

From 1996 to 2002 Rick lived in Prague, in the Czech Republic.  While there he published two books including Displaced (Foolishness Press, 1998) and Wallow (Foolishness Press, 1999).  His stories and poems have been featured on the pages of THINK and OPTIMISM.

Contact Links



Purchase Links

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

RELAX AND RECOVER AND RESCUE!

If you celebrated Christmas at home, perhaps today is without guests as it is for Hero and me. We were excited and happy to have our daughters with us for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Now they've returned to their own homes and our house seems exceptionally quiet.

Hero insisted on doing all the holiday cooking. Today, however, he is recovering from all the extra tasks he accomplished over the past few days. He's thinking of scaling back on food next year and I agreed we should. What's important is being together, not the foods we eat.

Santa recovering


I should add that Hero's not wearing a Santa suit as is the above cartoon Santa. Plus, when Hero leans back in his recliner, a cat is in his lap. That's sort of a funny story.

Flash back a few years to 2006: Our tuxedo cat, Sebastian, was a tiny runt when Hero rescued him from being sent to the pound. Sebastian was too young to be without his mother so we fed him formula for baby cats. Soon, he graduated to what looked exactly like rice pablum for a human baby. From there, he went on to cat food and grew and grew and grew. He is now too long for an ordinary litter box and needs a longer and taller style for his twenty+ pounds. He was supposed to be Hero's cat. In a remarkably rare occurrence, Sebastian bonded with me instead. He keeps me in sight when he can. In sight, yet he is only cuddly when he is in the mood. At night, he sleeps beside me or at my feet at what he considers his share of the bed. When I'm at my computer, he often jumps up to drape his long form across my desk and left arm. Soon he grows restless because my fingers/hands move. If I'm up late writing, he comes in to tell me it's bedtime. Cats are very much creatures of habit, aren't they?

Sir Sebastian on our bed.

Our youngest daughter had the most wonderful dog in the world, Findley, a shih tzu. We loved Findley and wanted a dog like him. So, in 2007 we adopted a rescued shih tzu, Webster, supposedly for me. Yeah, right. Webster bonded with Hero and they became buddies. I have an ankle problem that makes walking on uneven ground risky and difficult. So, usually Hero walked the little guy. Webster was a sweet dog but developed congestive heart problems and has passed away.

Webster, our rescued shih tzu

Meanwhile, I longed for a cat that would sit in my lap and keep me company while I wrote. So, we rescued Max, a Manx cat. However, Max instantly bonded with Hero and is only happy when Hero is near. (Hero has this amazing way with animals!). When Hero leaves to take care of an errand or even goes to the mailbox, Max calls for him and is restless until Hero returns. When Hero watches documentaries, Ted Talks, and space shots online, Max sits in his lap. When we watch television in our family room, Max sits on Hero's lap. At night, Max sleeps at Hero's feet. That is, until Max decides it's time to get up, and then he taps on Hero's face.

Max in Hero's lap

Since Webster passed away, Max has been even more Hero's companion. Now, the two are sitting back to relax and recover from all the extra tasks Christmas involved. Hero had all that extra cooking and Max had to patrol the rooms to be sure no invaders were infiltrating. Their relaxation is safe until after January 6th/Twelfth Night when we take down the tree and decorations. Max will enjoy that. Hero, probably not. 

Our latest rescue is Jasmine, a beautiful cat with soft, silky fur. I think she's what you'd call a long-haired Balinese, but we aren't certain. She hung out on our patio several days trying to catch squirrels and birds. This is not all right with us. We put out food for both and don't want them harassed or killed. In vain, we tried to locate Jasmine's owners. None of our neighbors had lost her but apparently she had been sleeping in the hothouse next door. That angered the owner and he threatened to call animal control. Sigh. What else could we do--we adopted her. Our cats are indoor-only pets. We took her to the vet to see if she had a microchip as well as to get her health checked. She is super-shy but loves to be petted as long as no one tries to lift her. She still flinches if someone moves quickly, even though she's had loving care from us. I'm sure someone was mean to her in her past.

Shy Miss Jasmine

I hope you had a wonderful holiday and can relax this week. I'll be writing--usual for me--and Hero will be doing the usual for him.

Monday, December 24, 2018

MERRY CHRISTMAS IN SONG!


Merry Christmas to you and yours. I'm sharing one of my favorite songs of this season, "Mary, Did You Know" by Pentatonix. This group began in Arlington, Texas, where Hero and I used to live.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ifCWN5pJGIE

As you listen, say a prayer of thanksgiving that we are allowed to celebrate this holy season in the way we wish. Don't forget to include a plea for all those worldwide who are being punished for their beliefs.

Another favorite Christmas song is this one, "O Come, O Come, Emanuel" performed by a choir.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7xtpJ4Q_Q-4

Please include a fervent prayer for all the homeless, the sick, and the lonely. Then, put your prayer into action by donating to your local food bank, Salvation Army, or another charity of your choice.

My wish for you is that you experience the most fulfilling holiday ever. Bless you in the coming year!

Friday, December 21, 2018

MURDER, CURLERS BOOK SERIES AND GIVEAWAY


Don't miss the Rafflecopter at the end of this post!


Murder, Curlers and Cream
Murder, Curlers Series Book 1
by
Arlene McFarlane

Genre: Cozy Mystery 

Smart, entertaining, and laugh-out-loud funny!”Liliana
Hart, New York Times Bestselling Author



Valentine Beaumont is a beautician with a problem. Not only has she got a
meddling mother, a wacky staff, and a dying business, but now she’s
got a dead client who was strangled while awaiting her facial.

With business the way it is, combing through this mystery may be the only
way to save her salon. Until a second murder, an explosion, a
kidnapping, death threats, and the hard-nosed Detective Romero
complicate things. But Valentine will do anything to untangle the
crime. That’s if she can keep her tools of the trade in her bag,
keep herself alive, and avoid falling for the tough detective.

In the end, how hard can that be?




MURDER, CURLERS & CREAM Excerpt

“You wound a perm rod around a man’s what?” Detective Romero stood in the middle of my Mediterranean-styled salon, hand on his gun hip, legs spread wide. His deep voice was laced with cynicism, and his blue eyes pierced me with a look that said now he’d heard everything.

I know it sounded outrageous, but good lord. It’d been several years since “Local Beautician Valentine Beaumont Uses Perm Rod to Curl Murderer’s Gonads” made front page headlines in the Rueland News. Was I ever going to live that down? It was an awful picture of me they’d run too, considering I was soaked in mud and covered in cuts and bruises.

Besides, there was another crisis at hand. I mean, a dead body had just been removed from the facial bed in Ti Amo—one of my treatment rooms, not thirty feet down the hall. Didn’t this detective, in his faded jeans and brown plaid shirt, think that was a little more important?

I pulled at my tight-knit top, trying not to let him get under my skin. “For the record, that perm rod saved me from being knifed to death. Anyway, it sounds worse than it was.”

“Worse than it was! Lady, that’s about as worse as it can get for a man.” He blew out a sigh. “I’d love to hear the full story on that one day.”

I smiled sweetly. “If you’re nice to me, maybe one day I’ll tell it.”

He glared at me, probably not certain if I was being sarcastic or sincere. Frankly, I wasn’t sure about that myself.

**Get it FREE!!**







Murder, Curlers and Canes
Murder, Curlers Series Book 2

Valentine Beaumont is back in her second hair-raising mystery, this time,
trying to find out who had it in for an elderly nun. Only trouble is
there are others standing in her way: hot but tough Detective Romero,
sexy new stylist Jock de Marco, and some zany locals who all have a
theory on the nun’s death.


Making things worse: the dead nun’s secret that haunts Valentine, another
murder, car chases, death threats, mysterious clues, an interfering
mother, and a crazy staff.

Between brushing off Jock’s advances and splitting hairs with handsome
Detective Romero, Valentine struggles to comb through the crime,
utilizing her tools of the trade in some outrageous situations.

Question is, will she succeed?






Murder, Curlers and Cruises
Murder, Curlers Series Book 3

Sharp, sexy, and side-splitting. Everything I love in a good mystery!” –
Darynda Jones, New York Times/USA Today Bestselling Author of the Charley
Davidson Series


A fun-filled ride. A zany cast of characters. And a quest to find a
killer. Another great book in a wonderful series!”
 –
Wendy Byrne, USA Today Bestselling Author of the Izzy Lewis Mysteries

In her third fast-paced mystery, beautician Valentine Beaumont and her
madcap crew sail the high seas on a Caribbean “Beauty Cruise.”
When a bizarre murder takes place onboard, Valentine finds herself
swept into the middle of the investigation.

If things aren’t bad enough, her mother is playing matchmaker, a loved
one is kidnapped, drug smuggling is afoot, a hair contest proves
disastrous, and a strange alliance between tough Detective Romero and
sexy stylist Jock de Marco rubs Valentine the wrong way.

Will this impulsive beauty sleuth comb through the catastrophes and
untangle the mystery, or will this voyage turn into another fatal
Titanic? With Jock and Romero onboard, it’s destined to be a hot cruise!


Arlene McFarlane is the author of the Murder, Curlers series.
Previously an aesthetician, hairstylist, and owner of a full-service
salon, Arlene now writes full time. When she’s not making up
stories, or being a wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, cat-mom,
or makeover artist, you’ll find her making music on the piano.

Arlene is a member of Romance Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, Toronto
Romance Writers, SOWG, and the Golden Network. She’s won and placed
in over 30 contests, including twice in the Golden Heart and twice in
the Daphne du Maurier.

Arlene lives with her family in Canada.


Follow the tour HERE for exclusive content and a giveaway!



Wednesday, December 19, 2018

LAS VEGAS CRIME


Don't miss the Rafflecopter giveaway at the end of this post!



Las Vegas Crime
Baxter and Holt Book 3
by
Leslie Wolfe
Genre: Crime Suspense Thriller 

Simply love Leslie Wolfe! The
Baxter-Holt series is 
one of the
best in the genre!
 This was a
great story that kept me on the edge of my seat the entire
time. 
Cannot wait until
the next one, 
Las Vegas Crime,
coming in November. 
Keep writing
them, Leslie!”



Detectives Laura Baxter and Jack Holt are
members of the elite: Las Vegas Metro PD, one of the toughest and
most respected law enforcement agencies in the United States. In the
middle of a city with two million residents and 43 million annual
visitors, they’re searching for a missing girl and the ruthless
killers who snatched her.

The girl: gone

When a teenage girl is daringly kidnapped from her school, minutes after being
dropped off, a frenzied search begins, involving the entire police
force of a city that never sleeps. But for 
Detectives
Baxter and Holt
 this isn’t a
crime like any other; it is personal. 

The crimes: terrifying

A bold and merciless serial killer preys on young girls and leaves them out to
die in the cold and dreadful expanse of the Mojave Desert, unable to
move, to scream, to fight for their lives.

The choice: impossible

Now Detective Holt is faced with an agonizing
decision: he can sacrifice all that he holds dear or jeopardize the
life of an innocent girl, his own flesh and blood. The man holding
all the cards in this game of life and death isn’t willing to
negotiate; he’s only willing to kill. 

In Las Vegas, few things end well.

Two mavericks form an intriguing team. Baxter and Holt trust each other
with their lives, just not with their secret plans.




Leslie Wolfe is a bestselling author whose novels break the mold of
traditional thrillers. She creates unforgettable, brilliant, strong
women heroes who deliver fast-paced, satisfying suspense, backed up
by extensive background research in technology and psychology.
Leslie released the first novel, Executive,
in October 2011. It was very well received, including inquiries from
Hollywood. Since then, Leslie published numerous novels and enjoyed
growing success and recognition in the marketplace. Among Leslie’s
most notable works,
The Watson Girl
(2017) was recognized for offering a unique insight into the mind of
a serial killer and a rarely seen first person account of his
actions, in a dramatic and intense procedural thriller.
A complete list of Leslie’s titles is available at
http://wolfenovels.com/order.
Leslie enjoys engaging with readers every day and would love to hear from you.

Follow the tour HERE for exclusive content and a giveaway!


Monday, December 17, 2018

WRITING THE OLD WEST


When I was a girl, my dad used to tell stories about events in his family’s history from the time they came to Texas in 1876 up through the time he and my mom married. Dad was a fascinating storyteller and I was a mesmerized listener—no matter how many times I’d heard that particular story. Is it any wonder that I love writing books set in that time period?

Dad was from a family of one girl and seven boys. (Don’t you feel sorry for the girl?) According to my father’s stories, the boys were a bit, um, rowdy. That made for interesting tales that became fodder for a writer’s stockpile of images and characters.

I love the contemporary West as well, but there’s something about the historic West that keeps characters and plots churning in my mind. I’m grateful Kirsten Osbourne let me use her Brides of Beckham matchmaker, Harriett Long, for my latest release, MAIL-0RDER MORIAH. Kirsten’s series is a favorite of mine and I’m thrilled to be associated even laterally.




MAIL-ORDER MORIAH is set in North Central Texas in a fictional town named Pearson Grove. My dad’s first name was Pearson and he was born in Pilot Grove in Grayson County, Texas. Being a writer is such fun—we can make up places at will.

In MAIL-ORDER MORIAH, Scott Ferguson is the owner of a mercantile store in Pearson Grove. He bought the store using an inheritance. His management has improved the store. Now he needs a helpmate, a wife who will be a true partner and help in the store as well as keep the home in the rooms over the mercantile. A brief engagement with the town’s social butterfly has left a bad taste in Scott’s mouth.

Moriah Singleton emigrated from England with the intention of finding a job in a shop. She planned to send money home so her sister could join her.  So far, life has not gone as planned and she soon finds herself with no job. Fortunately, she learns of Harriett Long and visits the matchmaker.

Life in Pearson Grove presents numerous obstacles to Moriah and Scott. After all, we want them to overcome roadblocks, successfully build their romance, and live happily ever after. 

Reviews have been great. Read for yourself and see if you agree. 

You'll find MAIL-ORDER MORIAH, on Amazon at http://getbook.at/MORIAH.

If you are in Kindle Unlimited, it’s free. Print versions are also available.

Friday, December 14, 2018

NO COWBOYS, NO ANGELS



Don't miss the Rafflecopter giveaway at the end of this post!


No Cowboys No Angels
The Mystery Angel Romances Book 1
by
Petie McCarty
Genre: Romantic Suspense

Kellen Brand's inheritance turns out to be a whopper—one dilapidated farm
in West Virginia and one guardian angel!

Since Kellen is convinced no sane woman would choose to live in Riverside,
she vows to sell her farm and quick. Her handsome neighbor Luke
Kenyon must block the farm sale or risk exposure of his family's
secrets. While Kellen has located one potential buyer, she faces a
town full of objectors. Someone is trying to frighten her off, and
Luke is forced to step in and rescue her more than
once.

Unfortunately, Kellen can't seem to stay out of trouble. She stumbles onto a
clandestine hazardous-waste-dumping operation next to her farm, and
she prays Luke has one more rescue up his sleeve. It's her only hope
of staying alive.

Unless her mother really did leave her a guardian angel . .




Silver Dagger Tour No Cowboys, No Angels Excerpt:

The frigid water closed in over Kellen, and she lashed out with both arms to force her head above the surface for a desperate breath. Her hiking boots would sign her death warrant. They already felt like concrete blocks. She had only minutes, maybe seconds, to keep herself afloat. She thrashed again, and this time her face barely cleared the water’s surface. She was ready and screamed with all her might.

Icy water filled her eyes, and her arms stroked hard to keep her mouth above the water long enough to grab a precious lungful of air. She scissored her legs to help her dwindling buoyancy, but the physical act was so difficult with the boots on, her muscles screamed with the effort.

How many more times can I get a breath? Two, maybe three?

Her arm muscles strained in revolt as she scissored her legs again. She plummeted farther after each thrust, and her best effort barely pushed her mouth and nose above the surface. She didn’t scream again. There was no one around to hear, and she couldn’t spare the strength. Less than a minute had passed since she’d hit the freezing water.

Downward she stroked her arms hard, but the heavy flannel shirt dragged against the motion. She opened her eyes to see the surface, and at the peak of her thrust, her lips were still underwater. She tried to scissor her legs, but she had nothing left. She feared she would sink and flailed both arms upward. Death hovered at her shoulder, near as the blackest of shadows beneath the dock, tangible enough that she could reach out and touch the darkness. Another stroke downward, and she jerked her head back, ready to grab a breath. She could see a blurred shadow moving overhead. Hope buoyed her efforts to escape from the frigid arms of the river drawing her down, and she forced her way to the surface.

A huge hand plunged into the icy water and grabbed her right arm. Kellen felt her body straining toward the surface. The second her mouth was exposed to the air, she gasped for a breath. A cough wracked her frame and threatened the tenuous hold of the mighty hand on her arm. She sunk back down, her eyes filled with water, and her vision blurred. She knew she weighed a ton—with the soaked clothing and boots—and panicked thinking the hand couldn’t hold on. Yet she was dragged higher until another hand grabbed the back of her shirt, and her body careened up and sideways onto the deck. The mighty hands released her, and she clutched at the wooden planks to be sure she was far enough from the precipice to the icy water. She heaved two successive gasps, and a hard sob wracked her frame.

Two strong arms tugged her upright. She blinked rapidly to clear her blurred vision and saw Luke’s face, his dark eyes wide. Nothing had ever looked so good to her in all her life. With another hard sob, she threw herself into his arms and broke into tears. The brush with death shattered all her resolve and kindled emotions buried in the deepest recesses of her heart.

He yanked her roughly to him and clutched her tight to his chest, mumbling soothing words into her ear. His warmth seeped into her, and she clung to him like her lifeline, digging her fingers into his back, unwilling to let go and unable to stop crying.

“I almost d-drowned,” she stuttered, her face buried against his warm and now soaked chest.

“Good Lord, I know,” he rumbled and crushed her even tighter against him.

“If you had been a minute later,” she wheezed and tried to look up at him.

“Don’t even think that!”

She flinched and leaned back. His gaze looked hard and unyielding.

“Just be glad I got here in time,” he whispered harshly, and his eyes went black as onyx. He cupped her cheeks, lowered his mouth, and gently brushed his lips against hers.

The sizzle of heat shot straight to her heart and warmed her from the inside out. All she could manage was a nod. His kiss twisted all her wild emotions into a spinning vortex, allowing her only to react without thought, and she leaned in to kiss him again.



Petie McCarty, Author

Petie McCarty spent a large part of her career working at Walt Disney World -- "The
Most Magical Place on Earth" -- where she enjoyed working in the
land of fairy tales by day and creating her own romantic fairy tales
by night, including her new series, The Cinderella Romances. She
eventually said good-bye to her "day" job to write her
stories full-time. These days Petie spends her time writing sequels
to her regency time travel series, Lords in Time, and her
cozy-mystery-with-a-dash-of-romantic-suspense series, the Mystery
Angel Romances.

Petie shares her home on the Cumberland Plateau in Tennessee with her
horticulturist husband, a spoiled-rotten English Springer spaniel
addicted to pimento-stuffed green olives, and a noisy Nanday conure
named Sassy who made a cameo appearance in Angel to the Rescue.



Follow the tour HERE for exclusive content and a giveaway!


Wednesday, December 12, 2018

HOLLIDAY HIJINKS



Don't miss the Rafflecopter giveaway at the end of this post!


Holiday Hijinks
Halliday Theater #1
by
Katherine Moore
Genre: Cozy Holiday Romance

It’s Christmas, and this year Emily Halliday is trying something new at
the struggling revival movie theater she runs for her
great-grandmother. After all, how many times can you show It’s a
Wonderful Life
?

Emily was hoping to make a little profit on “Holiday Hijinks,” her
“counter-programming Christmas” event. What she never
expected—plot twist—is that an unexpected guest will turn her own
life into a romantic comedy.

Holiday Hijinks is the first in a new series of cozy romances set in the
small Pacific Northwest town of Silver Birch, Washington. A short
read (15K) for a busy time, Holiday Hijinks introduces a whole
new cast of characters while bringing back “cameos” from the
“Meredith Manor Hotel” books, which are also set in Silver Birch.

If you love movies and food and romance as cozy as flannel jammies,
Holiday Hijinks is the Christmas read for you.

HOLIDAY HIJINKS Excerpt

The first person I told about my plans for the Halliday Holiday Hijinks, after Becca, was Max Hopkirk.

“You’ll need some guest stars,” Max had said when I ran into him at the Meredith’s “Haunted Hotel” party in October, “to add to the marquee value.”

Max was a semi-retired English actor who lived at Meredith Manor Hotel between engagements. I’d seen him do the one-man show A Christmas Carol at the hotel’s “Christmas Experience” the year before and had fallen completely in love with him even though he was almost forty years older than me and gay.

He’d been totally charming when I’d introduced myself and happily accepted my offer to host a Valentine’s Day screening of the artsy horror movie, Heart of a Devil, a Hammer-style 70s film in which he’d played a vampire count.

Max had brought little foil-wrapped chocolate hearts to distribute at the screening, then had delighted all the attendees with his gossipy stories of what went on behind the scenes during the movie’s filming. I’d finally had to chase everyone out of the theater so I could go to upstairs to bed.

Nella was crazy about Max. She had once gone to a Meredith Hotel Halloween costume party dressed as Gloria Swanson escorted by Max as William Holden and their Sunset Boulevard tag team had won “best costume.”

I think she would have been happy with an “all Max, all the time” schedule of guest appearances. If he hadn’t been so in demand on the Shakespeare festival circuit and unavailable much of the year due to Meredith Manor Hotel events, I think he’d have been happy to oblige.

Nella was delighted to hear Max had agreed to act as Master of Ceremonies for the movie marathon. So was I. It would take a lot of pressure off me.

I told Max that as soon as I had a firm lineup of the films—all the ticket holders got to vote on what we’d be screening—I’d consult with him. Max being Max, though, had phoned his agent and asked her who they had on their roster who might like to take part in a “film festival.” He must have made our little revival house event sound like a Pacific Northwest version of Sundance because the next thing I knew, I got a call from a woman in Los Angeles confirming that “the hottest young director in town” would be happy to lend his exalted presence to the Halliday Holiday Hijinks this Christmas. “And Emily, by ‘hottest,’ I do mean he is hot,” she’d added.

Got it.

“He is pretty hot,” Delia said when I showed her the director’s picture.

“Yeah,” I said, “if you like the broody, Byronic type.”

Delia looked at the picture again. “Who doesn’t?”

And that’s how Zachary “Zac Attack” Orwell ended up the main event at what Becca was calling the “Triple H party.”

**Only .99 cents!!**


Katherine Moore, Author

Born in Washington, D.C., Katherine Moore now lives in a small Pacific
Northwest town very much like Silver Birch. She has worked as a food
writer, a caterer, and a movie extra as well as a freelance lifestyle
reporter and staff writer for magazines in Honolulu, Los Angeles, and
Richmond, Virginia.


Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!