Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Five things about my current WIP Counterfeit Kisses

My fellow writer and friend Nancy Gadzuk tagged me to tell 5 things about my current work-in-progress, so here goes:

1. Counterfeit Kisses is a romantic suspense novel set in a small rural fictitious town outside of Portland, Oregon.

2. Jessie is targeted by a counterfeit drug ring operating in the area when she vows to find out why her mom's medication isn't working.

3. Counterfeit drugs may be contaminated with harmful substances, may contain wrong active ingredients that may or may not treat the condition or disease its labeled for, or may have too little or too much of the active ingredient which can cause unwanted side effects up to and including death.

4. Marc, the new chef at Tangles, looks just as hot in his chef's uniform as he does in his form fitting Levis and body hugging Washington Redskins T shirt.

5. Ryan, the local police detective and Jessie's high school sweetheart, wants to reconnect with Jessie just as badly as he wants to solve the problem of counterfeit drugs in his town.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Broken Embrace by Dana Mason - Blog Tour Book Review








SYNOPSIS:

The Past…
As childhood sweethearts, Brian and Melissa's plans were simple: finish school, get married, and live happily ever after. Unfortunately, life didn’t go as planned. Melissa went away to college, and Brian married her best friend.

The Present…
Seventeen years have passed and Brian's stable family life has come crashing down around him. His wife’s a cheater, his teenage daughter is hiding things from him and Melissa is back in town to remind him of what he lost all those years ago.
Melissa's returned home, ready to forgive and focus on her future, but that all changes the day she gets a desperate phone call from Brian’s daughter, Erin. Thrown back into Brian’s tumultuous life, Melissa struggles to move beyond the pain of his broken promise.

The Future…
While working together to save Erin from the evil web she’s caught in, Melissa and Brian fight to fix the past or face losing each other all over again.


REVIEW:

                         

                                FIVE STARS

Broken Embrace, book three of the Embrace Series, held my attention from the first page. It follows characters from book two, Brian and Melissa, on their journey for a second chance at love, weaving suspense, romance and betrayal into their journey.

Brian and Melissa wore promise rings sealing their love in high school. Melissa leaves for college and shortly after that hears from her twin sister Ali that Brian has married one of her best friends Julie. Devastated and with no explanation from Brian, Melissa spends the next 17 years away from her family trying to recover.

Melissa finally trusts her heart to another man, Chase, and moves home to be with her twin sister in a time of turmoil. At home again she reunites with her old high school friends Julie and Brian. Melissa vows to mend the damaged relationship with Julie and get to know her children Cody and Erin, but she keeps her distance from the one love of her life who broke her heart, Brian.

Then the roller-coaster ride begins. Brian finds his world turned upside down by the betrayal of his wife and the dangerous secrets kept by his daughter Erin.

Melissa is brought into the family chaos by Erin who turns to her instead of her dad for help when her reputation and her family are threatened. Melissa steps forward to help Brian regain his balance and rebuild his life with his two children at the potential cost of damaging her own relationship with her fiancé.

Melissa realizes she wants to be a part of this shattered family but doesn’t know if she trust Brian to keep her heart safe a second time. 

Dana Mason takes us on a turbulent ride with this love story complete with suspense, broken promises, deceit, and forgiveness. Her fast paced writing kept me turning the pages well past my bedtime. I appreciate Dana's ability to show each character making choices that impacted the outcome of the story and ultimately helped them heal and grow. Hard lessons are learned through some pretty violent situations affecting all the characters. A must read, along with the first two books of the series Dangerous Embrace and Precious Embrace.

Will there be a book #4? How about Matty and Erin? I hope so!!



AUTHOR BIO:

Dana Mason is happily settled in a small valley amongst the California grapevines with her husband and three children. Author of the romantic suspense, Embrace Series, she's written about a group of friends from Northern California who learn just how short life can be when you don't hold on to what's important. Second chances don't come easy...but sometimes love is worth the risk.

When not writing, Dana specializes in professional development and training. She's also a board member on the local Art's Council and does what she can to support the art community.

Dana Mason Media Links:
@danamason06




PURCHASE LINKS:
Dangerous Embrace (Book #1)

Precious Embrace (Book #2)

Broken Embrace (Book #3)
Amazon: http://amzn.to/1l0Y40W
Barnes&Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/broken-embrace-dana-mason/1119569541?ean=2940045949187

Friday, May 16, 2014

Beach time at Haystack Rock at Cannon Beach

We spent three gorgeous days at Cannon Beach: sunshine, bright blue sky, light breeze, beach walks, colorful sunsets, an awesome view from our room and being able to check out Haystack Rock at low tide!




 I did a little research on Haystack Rock to share with you.

Haystack Rock at low tide

The rock is composed of  basalt formed by lava flows emanating from the Grand Ronde Mountains 10 to 17 million years ago. The lava flows created many of the Oregon coast's natural features, including Tillamook Head, Arch Cape, and Saddle Mountain. Haystack Rock was once joined to the coastline but years of erosion have since separated the monolith from the coast. Three smaller, adjacent rock formations to the south of Haystack Rock are collectively called "The Needles".


Two of the "needles"

Haystack Rock is a 235-foot (72-meter) sea stack in Cannon Beach, Oregon. It is claimed locally to be the third-tallest "intertidal" (it can be reached by land) structure in the world. The monolithic rock is adjacent to the beach and accessible by foot at low tide. The Haystack Rock tide pools are home to many intertidal animals, including starfish, sea anemone, crabs, chitons, limpets, muscles, and sea slugs.





The rock is also a nesting site for many sea birds including seagulls, cormorants, and puffins. It was entertaining to watch the mass of birds flying around the rock in the evening, picking their landing place for the night. Watching the puffins in the morning at low tide was a treat!

Hard to see, but all those tiny white dots are birds!
This seagull posed for us on our deck railing

Did I mention the view from our room and the sunsets? Perfect!

A lovely time!


Thursday, May 8, 2014

Ashland Trip 2014

Another wonderful time with the girls in Ashland this spring. We lucked out on the weather-- had sunshine for most of the days there! We saw four plays: Comedy of Errors (set in Harlem in the 1920's), A Wrinkle in Time (staging was awesome), Water by the Spoonful (a contemporary play about the complexity of online relationships, cyber chat rooms, PTSD, and addiction--- an intense and very well acted play), and The Cocoanuts (a Marx Brothers comedy-musical.)



We had lots of porch time


 afternoon happy-hour!

 
 morning coffee/reading time

eating time

Blueberry crepes


 Pasta and green beans

Egg muffin with Cinnamon Roll Cake
  

 Breakfast lasagna with more coffee cake

At our favorite restaurant, The Peerless



















relaxing and reading time

















spa time

pedicure with Jan



and wine time


I was crowned Cork Queen this year for my wine label entry (a tough category - "old people.") I had to watch my back as the reigning queen wasn't happy about giving up her crown. As a matter of fact she wore a back-up crown after passing the scepter and crown to me!

1st place label
2nd place winner


2nd place label






The backup crown

It rained our last day there, so we visited a new winery just outside of town, Bella Fiore. Gorgeous setting and buildings. Great wine, too!















Seems like every year the time in Ashland goes by faster! Sure do enjoy these girls! Got to get my crown on and come up with next year's wine label competition category! Any suggestions?





Friday, April 25, 2014

 New Release - Granted Redemption 

by Katie Mettner

About the story:

Psalm 23: Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death….. A lifetime ago Grant Harris was an Australian surfer at the top of his sport, until one wave changed everything. Fifteen years later, Grant has become bitter, lonely, and disillusioned. Hoping to jump start his career he accepts a position in Duluth Minnesota, with no way of knowing how quickly his life was about to change. A lifetime ago Carla Coffers was a runaway teen with no family, no money and no hope for a future. Fifteen years later, she’s a successful business woman as owner of Carla's Kinky Café, on beautiful Lake Superior. Her friends think she’s got it all, but Carla still yearns for the one thing she never had. A cup of coffee, a car, a confession and a cross come together to grant them redemption from their past and hope for the future. 

 Granted Redemption is available through: 

 

My review of Granted Redemption:

 

Granted Redemption is the first in the Northern Lights series by Katie Mettner. I fell in love with Katie’s smooth, evenly-paced writing style in her Sugar series (Sugar’s Dance, Sugar’s Song, and Sugar’s Night.) This book uses the same Duluth setting but follows Grant Harris and Carla Coffers, two people who work carefully to portray confident people in their chosen professions. But underneath that facade they are wounded souls who are hiding a dark part of their past. These secrets don’t allow them to move on with their lives.


Grant is a pediatric physical therapist who has moved from his home in Australia to Duluth, Minnesota via California. He had me in his corner from the get-go by the way he speaks to and works with his young patients. He meets Carla who owns Carla's Kinky Cafe and is so drawn to her he can’t stay away, even as he tells her he isn't looking for commitments. Soon his philosophy of remaining a confirmed bachelor is in jeopardy. Carla portrays herself as a capable business woman but is tormented by a secret in her past and is afraid of getting her heart broken. I found myself rooting for both of these guilt-ridden but very likable characters.


It’s hard to watch Grant and Carla as they struggle through the first parts of building a relationship without sharing the demons from their past, but I had confidence in their love for and patience with each other.  They both make mistakes as they share their secrets, but work together to find their way back to God and the redemption and forgiveness they deserve. The dialogue between the devil and angel on Grant’s shoulder was delightful and I especially liked the reunion with his lovable and supportive parents who had their faith tested also.


Granted Redemption has steamy love scenes throughout making it a “spicy” Christian Romance with a surprising ending.

 
 

 

About Katie:

 

I grew up in Eau Claire, Wisconsin and moved to the Northwoods as a young adult where I now reside with my husband and three children. My love affair with Lake Superior began when I met my husband, Dwayne, and he drove me across the bridge one snowy November day with my nose pressed up against the glass. It was in that moment the scene was set for my breakout novel!
As a young adult I enjoyed ballroom dancing and spent many hours on the dance floor. After an injury sidelined me for 10 years I am finally able to waltz again! My stories are a reflection of my love for family intricately woven with life experience. When the gales of November blow early you can find me at the computer with a cup of joe, listening to Michael Bublé and working on Sugar's next adventure...

 

Read more about Katie on these links:

 

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Amazon Author Page