Wednesday, 16 January 2019

#MidWeekTease Ethereal Guardian - Releasing January 22

I have to open with a somber note. One of our regular teasers, Doris O'Connor passed away recently. She was a wonderful lady and a fantastic writer. She will be greatly missed.

I thought I'd share another snip from Ethereal Guardian and share the cover! It will release January 22 and the first in the series, Ethereal Protector, is on sale now for only 99 cents.

Without further ado, the tease!

Victoria played with her corn silk doll beneath the oak tree behind the house. Ember kept half an eye on the child while picking peas from the garden. Mother shelled the first basket of pods while sitting in her wooden rocker, light streaming down from behind and warming her. Showing her age, the matriarch moved slowly, hands gnarled and fingers uncooperative. Despite the warm day, a blanket covered her lap and legs.
“Anne!” Victoria’s high, tiny voice drew Ember’s attention. The doll hung from a branch by a thread of her own dress. “A witch!” The young girl stretched out along the limb, high above the ground.
“Tory! Get down from there. That’s too high!” Before the child could obey, she rolled and came crashing down on the grass beneath the tree.
Mother jumped from her rocker, knocking peas and shells aside. “No! Victoria! Anne, why weren’t you watching?”
Ember didn’t answer, reaching Victoria before Mother could. “Tory. Tory, answer me. Tory.” The child hung limp in Ember’s arms.
“Anne?”
Ember dropped the child in surprise, letting the blonde head fall in her lap. That was Victoria’s voice.
Mother fell to her knees, groaning and crying as she did. “No, no. Victoria.”
“What is it?” the small voice asked again. Ember turned to place it. A translucent version of Victoria stood behind her.
“Tory? You’re dead, aren’t you? You’re here to haunt us because we couldn’t protect your mother.”
“I don’t understand,” she muttered, shaking her head and setting her curls swinging. “Dead?”
“She’s not dead,” Mother told Ember. “She’s still breathing.” Taking Ember’s hand and placing it on the child’s chest, she proved her point.
“But then who is that?” she pointed to the ephemeral figure.
“Hello, Auntie.” She waved.
The old woman looked straight at the apparition but gave no indication of seeing or hearing her. “Who?”
Ember ground her teeth. “Okay, Victoria, your body is still alive, but it must need you to stay that way. Can you…climb into it? Like pulling on your dress.”
“I’ll try.” The translucent child sat down atop the limp body, but nothing happened. She didn’t disappear back into the physical form, nor did the small female frame move in any way.
“I’ll have to come up with something else,” Ember muttered.
“Anne? Are you well? You’re talking nonsense.” Mother frowned, obviously concerned.
“I’m fine. I just need some things. Leave her here and go find the doctor.”
“Yes, I will.” Mother rose slowly, using her hand on the ground and then her knee as shifted her weight on angry joints. Once up, she found her cane and headed out of the yard.
As soon as she was on the move, Ember darted into the house and opened the chest containing her dowry. The linen and porcelain were intended for her marriage, but beneath, in a bag at the bottom, were stones, crystals, talismans, and dried herbs wrapped in paper. It was a gift from Dorothy before her hanging and Ember had hidden it away immediately, preventing even her mother from knowing the items existed.
She didn’t have any real knowledge as to the use of the contents, but surely her need would guide her. God help her, Victoria needed it.

Please enjoy all the other great teases being shared this week.

Wednesday, 26 December 2018

#MidWeekTease Boxing Day and Ethereal Witness

Happy Holidays! It's Boxing day here in Canada, which means sales! It also means coming down from the rush of the big day. Breaking from Ethereal Guardian, I thought I'd give you a snip from Ethereal Witness and Paige's Christmas.

. “Okay, Geoff. Let’s go.”
The wisps that formed his apparition grew dark. “Geoffrey.”
“I can’t call you Geoff?”
“No.” He turned away from her.
“Fine.” She rolled her eyes and pulled on rubber boots. The streets were a wet mix of snow and slush. She might wish for something warmer when she got to the park, but it didn’t snow enough to make it worth buying winter boots.
From the shed, she retrieved a spade and headed down the alleys.
“Not the street?” Geoffrey asked.
“Nah. Don’t need any questions about the black girl and her shovel. I mean, it’s practically a weapon.”
Geoffrey’s brow furrowed and she was surprised she could make it out. “Oh. A thieving slave?”
She nodded. “Yeah, they’d probably think that too. Y’know, I really resent your ancestors.”
Geoffrey held up his hands. “We didn’t have any slaves.”
“No, but I bet you treated those in town horribly.”
He shook his head. “They didn’t go around town. I only ever saw them at church. They sang like angels.”
“Yeah? That’s not something I inherited.” Her boot squelched in a puddle.
“Too bad.”
Paige tried to recall ever saying more than a few words to the ghost. Never more than a few. “Do you talk to Ember or Gwen like this?”
“Not really. I’m sure they would, but it’s usually just me and Summer.”
“Yeah. That’s the difference, isn’t it? Wait.” She stopped and turned in a circle. “There.” She pointed to a tall thick oak. In Jane’s memory, it had been much smaller. “Be my look out? It’s early and Christmas, so I’m hoping no one is going to the park, but you can let me know in time to stop digging.”
The ghost nodded. “I can do that.”
“Perfect.” Paige put the tip of the spade to the grass and stepped on it.
Cutting into the sod, especially frozen, was tougher than she expected, but once she’d broken a square a couple of feet long, it was easy to pry it up from the soil beneath that hadn’t chilled enough to freeze. Setting the sod aside, the rest of the job took no time, and within an hour, the spade hit something. At first she thought it was just another root, but as she brushed it off, it had a rounded corner and wasn’t oak but a light wood, like birch or beech.
The box wasn’t exactly in the hole and she wished for something a little smaller, like a trowel, to get it out. Instead, she dug down and under, leaving the box hanging. Pushing and wiggling, she worked it free.
“Paige!”
At Geoffrey’s voice, she dropped the box in the hole, threw the spade back into some bushes and slipped the sod into place. It wouldn’t take much to notice it had sunken or the pile of dirt beside it. Thrusting dirty hands into pockets, she wandered, hoping she looked like another person enjoying the mild winter.
“Merry Christmas,” a woman wearing a hijab said as she passed.
“Same to you,” Paige answered reflexively. Then she took in the other woman’s scarf. Wait. You don’t celebrate Christmas.”
The woman laughed. “No, but you do, do you not?”
“Uh, yeah. Happy whatever-holiday-you-have.”

Don't miss the other great teases this week and enjoy the festive season!

Wednesday, 19 December 2018

#MidWeekTease Ethereal Guardian

Another Wednesday closer to Christmas! Can you feel it? These snips are taking place just after the holidays.

She pulled against his hold, stopping him. “Yours wasn’t?”
He sighed again. “Nothing big. Just have some family I’d rather not visit, y’know?”
Ember nodded. “I don’t really, but sure, I can see how that might happen.”
“Let’s just say, it is amazing to see you again.” Wrapping those strong arms around her, he pulled her close enough to kiss.
They were still amid milling students, so despite her toes curling in her boots, she pulled away before it deepened.
“Hey, I know it’s still morning, but can I steal you sometime?” Connor asked taking her hand again and leading her toward the quad.
“Depends what you’re stealing me from, I guess.” She stepped around a slushy puddle and her dream returned. She had to blink away the memory of a long skirt and buttoned shoes. Even knowing her friends were experiencing the same, she had trouble accepting the woman was actually her ancestor.
Connor’s voice broke the spell. “Nothing crucial. Just hoped that maybe, for lunch, we could go to my place.”
Butterflies appeared in her stomach, but the fluttering quickly led to the bottom dropping out. In the dorm, the same tower where she’d met Duncan, where he’d…
“Um, maybe? Is there somewhere else we could eat?” She looked to the building in the distance, worried it would fall on her, crush her.
Connor growled low in his throat. “He hurt you there. If he weren’t on his way out, I’d rip that guy apart.” He punched a fist into a palm and Ember started at the force of it. “Listen, we don’t have to go to my room, but I want to take you inside, just the lobby. You can’t let him rule you forever.”
Taking a deep breath, she settled her nerves. He was right. Duncan had made her miserable more than long enough. “Yeah. I have another class in an hour.”
“I have a little less, but let’s grab a coffee and head that way.”
Ember needed his firm hand wrapped around hers to lead her from the coffee shop to the dorm. Hesitating on the threshold, Connor opened the door for her, kissing her temple. “You’ve got this.”

Don't miss the other great teases this week:

Thursday, 13 December 2018

Meet Calgary's flirty-filthy doyenne M. Jane Colette & get a sneak peek at her new release Text Me, Cupid #textmecupid #authorspotlight


M. Jane Colette is a Calgary-based author who, as her bio puts it, writes tragedy for those who like to laugh, comedy for the melancholy, and erotica for people who like their fantasies real. She believes rules and hearts were made to be broken; ditto the constraints of genres. Her novels include Tell Me, Consequences (of defensive adultery), and the award-winning rom-com Cherry Pie Cure. This December, she's releasing her fourth novel, Text Me, Cupid, which she's calling "a (slightly dirty) love story for 21st century adults who don't believe in true love... but want it anyway."
As part of the Text Me, Cupid launch party, I'm hosting an Author Spotlight on M. Jane Colette, which includes a video of Jane reading an excerpt from Text Me, Cupid and a chance to win a PRINT copy of the novel. But first... some Q&A with M. Jane:
Is there a general theme to your novels?
Yes! I try to write... fantasies that come true. So all of my heroines come with wounds and baggage, often with children and ex-husbands and needy parents, and everyone is imperfect and messy... and they all fall in love anyway and have fabulous, hot sex, and craft their own unconventional happily ever after.
What inspires you to write?
Everything! My least favourite question, to be honest, is "How much of this is based on real life." Because, really, everything comes from real life. Just not necessarily my life, right? The first seed for Text Me, Cupid happened about two years ago when I was helping my friend Marie clean a bank at night. She was dry-mopping the foyer and dancing, and I was lugging this giant vacuum cleaner, and it was such hard work, but we were having such fun, and then one of the bank managers was working late in her office when we came in to clean... and she treated us so badly... because, you know, we were cleaning ladies. And I decided my next heroine was going to be a janitor and she was going to rock it. And her lover was going to be a bank manager... and... and... well, before I knew it, I had a story.
What do you do when you're not writing?
Reading. Right? Or, dancing. Or taking care of the fam. Or, falling in love. But mostly reading. The exciting life of a writer. :)
Strangest place you've ever written?
It's not so strange, but I wrote the first chapter of my second novel, Consequences at a Christmas Party, by hand, on a bunch of napkins, because it came to me so clearly and I was so worried I was going to lose it. There were about 40, 60 people milling around and talking and drinking, and I was writing like a madwoman... and then, I didn't come back to that story for another seven months. But I had the beginning, and that first chapter stayed virtually unchanged in the final story.
What do you want for Christmas?
A unicorn. ;) What else?
What's this newest novel about?
A one night stand that lasts 365 days. Incidentally, I have Christmas issues--all my books, apparently, have climaxes and crashes centered around Christmas, and Text Me, Cupid is no different. The action starts just before Christmas... and ends on Christmas Day the following year. It's a pretty sweet arc. The hero and heroine are so clearly wrong for each other--but the chemistry is so explosive--I think up until the end the reader will be wondering how the hell I'm going to manage to give them a happy ending. But I do. :)
You write romance. Are happy endings important to you?
Yes. So very. I believe we use stories to heal our trauma, and no stories do this more explicitly than romance novels. Author Martha Beck has this amazing quote, she says: "Bad artists ignore the darkness of human existence. Good artists often get stuck there. Great artists embrace the full catastrophe of our condition and find beyond it an even deeper truth of peace, healing, and redemption." I don't claim to be a great artist. But I do explore the full catastrophe of the human heart... and if I'm going you to hell, I promise I will take you to a land of such utter bliss afterwards, you're going to want a cigarette... even if you've never smoked in your entire life.

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT TEXT ME CUPID
Text Me, Cupid
a (slightly) dirty love story for 21st century adults who don’t believe in true love… but want it anyway
by M. Jane Colette
Genres: contemporary romance, romantic comedy, steamy (occasionally filthy)

HOLIDAY STRESS HAS NEVER BEEN THIS HOT
MEET FLORENCE: I’ve done this before, looking for a partner or soul mate or someone-to-grow-to-love, and you know what? I’m done with that. Honestly. I’m just looking for some casual sex. All I’m interested in is a one-night stand, or several—not all of them with you. Just making it clear that I’m interested in playing with multiple partners. I don’t want to get attached and I don’t want you to get attached.
MEET WILL: I’m reeling from a recent divorce and incapable of having a meaningful relationship, possibly even a meaningful conversation. The only upside to my situation is that after fifteen years of monogamy I get to chase all the strange I want.
He’s freshly divorced and in denial. She's twice-burnt and prickly. They’re a terrible idea. They know this. But every time their eyes meet, their clothes come off. Still—they’re not going to fall in love. They are not.
Not even if this one night stand has 365 days.
WANT A TASTE?
Here's M. Jane Colette reading a semi-steamy (but still safe for YouTube and Facebook) excerpt from Text Me, Cupid:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEl4g--FS-M&t=14s
Prefer to read?
WANT THE WHOLE THING?
Price: $3.99 US (ebook), $14.99 US (paperback), $9.99-$19.99 (audiobook)
WANT TO WIN?

Click here to enter on RAFFLECOPTER by December 16, 2018 to win a signed PRINT copy of TEXT ME, CUPID M. Jane Colette will ship anywhere in the world (because she's crazy)
ADVANCE PRAISE
“I couldn't stop reading this! The waiting, the need, the want, the desire... the story is a rollercoaster and I love it. Will and Florence are so vivid on the page, I was in agony with them from the start.” Alyssa Linn Palmer, author of Midnight at the Orpheus and Le Chat Rouge series
“No one does angst, family drama, hilarity, joy and eroticism better than M. Jane Colette!” DIANA SOBOLEWSKI, author of The Desire & Luxury Wine Series, (on Messy Christmas, Episode 1 of Text Me, Cupid)
“Text Me, Cupid was the first story I'd read by M. Jane Colette, and I love her fresh, taut style. Every word, every sentence counts. It's smart and sexy. I can't wait to read the rest!” Michelle Orloff, GoodReads + Amazon.com ARC Review of Delayed Valentine, Episode 2 of Text Me, Cupid
“M. Jane Colette writes complicated relationship dynamics into story lines that keep you off balance but leave you smiling in the end.” Amazon.ca Verified Purchase Review, Delayed Valentine, Episode 2 of Text Me, Cupid
“She spotlights those less than perfect relationships; often the source of hilarity in this author’s work. M. Jane Colette has a unique writing style. At least it's unique to me. She believes in short sentences and sparse dialogue. Don't worry, you will not be short changed in any respect. You'll visualize and experience everything you're meant to, including the angst, the joy, the funny bits and all of the eroticism. This author doesn't succeed despite her minimalist approach. She succeeds because of it. M. Jane Colette has mastered doing more with less.” Amazon.ca Verified Purchase Review, (on Messy Christmas, Episode 1 of Text Me, Cupid)
“M. Jane Colette knows how to write characters.” Caught Between The Pages (on Consequences)
“I highly recommend it to anyone who wants a sexy, intelligent, complicated, and fascinating read about relationships that are as complex and difficult and wonderful and confusing as most relationships usually are.” Grey Matter (on Tell Me)
“This book is a cure for divorce, depression, loneliness, boredom, you name it. Laugh-out-loud funny from the first page!” Holly Owen, Alberta Romance Writers’ Association (on Cherry Pie Cure)
“Warning: You may breakout in spontaneous laughter, develop cravings for baked goods and become a life-long devotee of the author!” Carrie Austin Reviews (on Cherry Pie Cure)

WANT TO HEAT UP YOUR HOLIDAYS?
Price: $3.99 US (ebook), $14.99 US (paperback), $9.99-$19.99 (audiobook)
TEXT ME, CUPID online LAUNCH party #textmecupid πŸ’˜ C.R. Moss (Tues, Nov 26, 2018) πŸ’˜ Sip, Read, Love (Thurs, Nov 28, 2018) πŸ’˜ Alyssa Linn Palmer (Sat., Nov 30, 2018) πŸ’˜ UnConventional Bookworms (Mon, Dec 3, 2018) πŸ’˜ Romance Novel Giveaways (Wed, Dec 5, 2018) πŸ’˜ SJ's Book Blog (Thurs, Dec 6, 2018) πŸ’˜ Cameron Allie (Fri, Dec 7, 2018) πŸ’˜ Dirty Bad Bloggers (Sat, Dec 8, 2018) πŸ’˜ The Genre Minx Book Reviews (Sun, Dec 9, 2018) πŸ’˜ Amanda Siegrist (Mon, Dec 10, 2018) πŸ’˜ Stephanie's Book Reports (Tues, Dec 11, 2018) πŸ’˜ 2 Chicks & A Book (Wed, Dec 12, 2018) πŸ’˜ Angelica Dawson (Thurs, Dec 13, 2018) πŸ’˜ Roxana Nastase (Fri, Dec 14, 2018)  

Wednesday, 12 December 2018

#MidWeekTease Ethereal Guardian

Wednesday again already. The weeks really whisk by, don't they. Here's another tease from the third Ghosts of Salem book, Ethereal Guardian.

“Ember!” Turning, she spotted Connor coming out of another building. Rather than head in his direction, she took a moment to drink him in. The nursing student had thick arms, filling the sleeves of his fleece hoodie. He trotted up to her, dark blond hair bouncing slightly on each step and falling into his warm brown eyes. His smile gleamed, teeth bright, and any fear or doubt faded out in its light. Those firm arms wrapped around her, pulling her to his broad chest. His chiseled chin rested on the top of her head as he hugged her, marking a straight line.
“I missed you,” she told him. He’d crossed her mind many times since her return. Their relationship was new enough that she sometimes forgot the hole left in his absence, but his arrival promptly filled it again.
“Missed you too.” He released her enough to look into her eyes. “You had a good break, though, right?”
She snickered. “Yes.”
“Oh, good.” He sighed and took her hand in his. “Where are you headed?”
She pulled against his hold, stopping him. “Yours wasn’t?”

Short one! Don't miss the other great teases.

Wednesday, 5 December 2018

#MidWeekTease Ethereal Guardian

Welcome to another #MidWeekTease from Ethereal Guardian, the third Ghosts of Salem volume. We finished with Ember more than a little miffed at her witchy roomies.

The new semester meant Ember and Summer were able to put their English class, and the business student they both despised behind them. Even so, when ten rolled around, Ember shivered.
Duncan’s weight, pressing her to the bed. His breath hot on her mouth and neck. His hard length pressing into her thigh, moving up.
“Need a scarf?” Summer suggested, taking off the one she wore. “January chills suck.”
Ember took the brilliant red fabric and wound it around her neck. “Yeah, that’s better. Thanks.”
“Something else?”
Ember smirked. “How can you tell? Yeah, it’s English time.”
“Ah.” Her friend nodded, dark brown hair falling over her shoulders and onto her cheek. “Duncan.”
“He haunts me.” She rubbed her arms.
“No, Geoffrey haunts us. Duncan just leaves a bad smell.” She wrinkled her nose which made Ember chuckle.
“That wasn’t all he left.”
“Well, he isn’t going to be leaving anything else. I heard he’s transferring. Bet he thinks that’ll be the end of all the girl trouble.” Summer’s smug smile didn’t reassure Ember as much as Summer herself. “It won’t. He’s doomed to show his real face from now on.”
Ember nodded. “Yeah, right. That’s good. Is it?”
“Of course it is. He won’t be taking advantage of anyone anymore. He’ll still get dates. It’s not like we cursed him to be a slobbering animal. He’ll just have to win them over properly. I mean, if he starts being a good guy, not an act but really changed, then it won’t affect him at all.”
Ember tapped her pen on her notebook. “Yeah. I guess.” She wasn’t as sure as Summer. Was it justice or vengeance?

Be sure to read all the great teases this week and every week.

Wednesday, 28 November 2018

#MidweekTease Ethereal Guardian

Happy Wednesday. Time for another snippet from Ethereal Guardian, which will be the third book in the Ghosts of Salem series.

“Yeah, okay. I’m…I’ll be back.” Slipping through the door without a coat, she couldn’t stay out long. The cold snapped her up though, breaking both her anger and the strange hysteria that had surprised her. Comparing the crystal to a stain remover really belittled what Summer had done.
Wrapping her arms around herself, she walked to the garden and looked down where the earth was exposed, a few leaves there looked far too green for the season. Was she freaking out over nothing?
Summer wouldn’t hurt her, she was sure of that. Doubt still needled her, like the ice seeping into her slippers. One thing was certain. Magic was part of her, just as it was in each of the others, and she could either accept that and confront it, or deny it and risk something worse than making a calculated mistake, making a naΓ―ve one.
Plucking one of the leaves, she laid it flat in her palm. The magic that had revived it still flowed through it. Focusing, she tried to pull it out again. It darkened, twisted and curled up, looking like all the other leaves in the flower bed. Taking a deep breath, she blew the remnant away. If she couldn’t do something right, at least she could set it right.
The tiny spell had taken long enough that Gwen and Paige were on their way back up the stairs. Summer frowned and waited for Ember to approach. “I’m really sorry,” she said.
Ember nodded. “I know. It’s okay.”
Meeting her gaze, Summer’s shoulders dropped. “Thank you. I…Paige said something earlier and I don’t think you were there to hear it. She said that magic was a part of us, just like any other talent or ability. We can control it the same way we control our tempers or use a tool correctly.”
“Somehow I think making a mistake with magic will be worse than a temper tantrum.”
Summer looked at her feet. “Yeah, probably, but what I really meant was, there’s no use running from it and probably a lot better to learn to control it. Don’t you think so?”
Rather than answer, Ember turned to the stairs. “Actually, I was thinking just that while I was outside.”
Summer hurried to follow her up. “Really? That’s great!” When they reached the landing, she seized Ember in a hug.
“I get it. You’re worried about me. I appreciate that, but right now, I need to warm up. It’s cold out there.” She rubbed her arms.
“Right. We’ll…talk more later. Okay?”
Ember nodded and entered her bed room. Closing the door behind her she leaned on it. Could undoing magic teach her the control she needed? Maybe not, but it was a good place to start.