Sunday, March 31, 2013

Christine Presents: Bobble Head Babes

The continuing saga...

The babes are hitting shaw square this morning (before egg hunting time). It's a beautiful day here for Easter weekend. The daffodils are blooming and it's going to be over 70 degrees. Woohoo...

I'm starting the last chapter of Sweet Sexy Sadie then I have to go back and work in the Amzonia devil. I don't want people to say they have unanswered questions. 

Will Sadie break Brody's heart?  Will the two find a lasting love? 

Tune in for the ever changing love story.

Colored Easter eggs with one granddaughter last night. So much fun, she didn't want to go home. We also spent the afternoon at Enchanted Forest. She ran into her cousin there, coincidentally. And she didn't want to leave the Forest.

On the writing end, we are always battling pirates. It seems people think it's ok to sell an author's book without paying them. Why... Are we so immoral. And the crazy thing is, the publisher or the author, whoever discovers the pirating has to fill out tons of paperwork to get the book taken off the illegal site. They ought to be sued up their...

Second granddaughter will arrive this afternoon for a second round of egg coloring then they will hunt them in our courtyard which has been recently weeded. So much fun when the Easter bunny arrives. 

But what am I going to do with twenty-eight hard cooked eggs?

And I have to weigh in on Tuesday. I can't eat them.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Christine Presents: Dakota's Bride

Dakota's Bride by Christine Young
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level:

Moonless and frigid, the December night sent chills down Emma's spine. Yet she didn't stop at the lighted inn nearby, nor did she break stride when she stumbled over a rut in the muddy road. Instead, she pulled her skirts higher. A carriage raced by, hell-bent in the same direction, spitting mud as it flew past

A frantic look over her shoulder did nothing to relieve the fear. He was closing on her, forcing her from her hiding place. She stopped for a moment while she quickly shook the mud off her cape, then she turned to the little girl.

"You all right, Clare?" Emma asked.

The little girl nodded but didn't say anything, her face screwed tight with concentration, her breaths ragged and hard.

The big Mississippi paddle wheeler, due to leave in ten minutes, let out two loud, booming whistles. To Emma's frayed nerves, the sound was heart-stopping.

The wind from the docks smelled of fish and tar. When it shifted, she could make out the aroma of fresh baked scones coming from the inn. Emma gripped the tiny hand she held in her own a little tighter, and prayed that Clare could keep up the pace.

"It's only a wee bit farther. We can make it," Emma told the little girl, her sister. Half sister, she reminded herself.

Clare's father was not her own. His demonically hand­some face leering at her while he calmly explained what he meant for Emma to do in the bordello was something she'd never forget.

Clare was a tiny and very fragile seven-year old. She had loving green eyes and a long, slender nose coupled with delicate cheekbones. Emma knew that someday Clare would grow into a classic beauty.

One long blond lock of hair slipped loose from Clare's cap. The little girl pushed it away with her free hand, wrinkling her nose disgustedly.

Frost coated the road, and each hurried step caused the almost frozen mud to crunch beneath their feet. A horse and rider passed them, the man tipping his hat as he and his mount thundered by. Church bells rang out, the sound hollow and thin. It was almost six o'clock. She had five minutes to reach the boat.

A gust of wind caught her broadside and whisked the hood of her cape off the top of her head. She grabbed the soft fur and pulled the fabric back where it belonged. Distracted by the wind and her haste to reach the boat, Emma caught the toe of her shoe on a rock and balanced precariously for an instant.

She swore softly under her breath.

Had only one month passed?

No, three weeks ago her mother had died and two weeks ago she had learned the awful truth. Lawrence Stevens had slowly poisoned her mother. He had given her a small dose of arsenic each day until finally her mother took to her bed. Several days later Emma had held her mother's hand while she breathed her last.

Emma would never have known about the murder if she hadn't overheard Stevens speaking in harsh whispers with a friend of his. There were other things said and promised, things Emma had not wanted to acknowledge.

Disbelief and denial had caused her to waste precious time. Seven days had come and gone since she'd had her last horrible encounter with her stepfather. It was an encounter that had left her with no doubts that everything she'd heard was the god-awful truth. Stevens had meant to sell her to a whorehouse. Still, she'd had a difficult time believing the extent of Lawrence Stevens's depravity. But when he'd installed her in Madame leBon's bordello, she realized too late that her life was in grave jeopardy.

And Clare, sweet, sweet Clare, had understood all she'd told her and perhaps more. With the eyes of a child, Clare had somehow sensed the evil that surrounded her father long before anyone else did.

Five long days and nights they'd spent on the run. Clare had not complained. No matter how exhausted or hungry she was, the little girl had pressed on, understanding the imminent danger that faced Emma. Clare had somehow known that Emma had to get as far away from Lawrence as possible.

This incredible romance is one I positively fell in love with and is good enough to read again and again.
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance & More
4 Cups
I can’t remember the last time I was so engrossed in a book: Dakota’s Bride took over my weekend, and even now, am wishing to go peruse it one more time…
Rating: 4.5 Books
Reviewed by Snapdragon Long and Short Reviews 

Friday, March 29, 2013

Christine Presents: Friday's Featured Title

A Smuggler's Story
John R. Sikes
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 1

An action-packed tale of the early days of Marijuana smuggling. Ride along as four country boys take the risks and pay the fines for living through the times of getting high and tuning in. If you like bull riding, fast cars, and crazy cowboys, you'll love this fun-filled sometimes bitter, sometimes sad, story of what it was like to be in the middle of the drug running business. From the war in Vietnam to the War on Drugs, it covers the feelings of many of those that lived and died during those times. Find out by who and how the notorious bloodthirsty drug cartels were formed; the shocking truth of how they came by the weapons needed to take control of the land of drugs and routes they needed to bring them to the United States.     


Rafael had just finished watering his Marijuana plants when he heard the helicopter coming. For a minute he thought it was going to fly right on by, till it made a quick circle and came to a dusty landing at the edge of the plot. Goats feeding in and around the clothing hung on a line in the yard behind his small house were sent scattering in the wind. Two armed Mexicans and one gringo stepped from the stripped down Huey helicopter.

"Buenos Dias. Do you speak English?" the gringo asked Rafael as the dust settled from the spinning rotors.

"Si señor," Rafael answered as he studied the gringo's face hidden behind the mirrored sunglasses.

"Good, I hate to have these interpreters doing my talking. I am officer Baker. We were doing some aerial surveillance and noticed your field of Marijuana. You do know it is illegal to grow it here in Mexico, don't you?"

"Oh no, señor, no one ever told me I could not grow this."

"Well, it is," Officer Baker replied. "I am here as an advisor to the Mexican Police Department on how to deal with this drug problem. Now, we have a couple of ways of doing this. One, we can take this copter and spray your field here with this chemical called paraquat; it will kill everything it touches and leaves your ground worthless, or we can work something out where everybody gets a piece of the action."

Officer Baker loved his job. He had thought the military was the life for him. When he was accused of stealing supplies from the army base where he was stationed, his attitude changed. Given the chance of an early out or court marshal, he decided a different career was in order. Luckily for him, the base commander was willing to sweep everything out the door instead of having to go through a court case that wasn't going to make anyone look good. When a job opened up with the U.S. government to help transfer a bunch of extra Huey helicopters back from active duty in Vietnam to the Mexican Police Force, he jumped on it. Still a little shocked they hired him, he was quick to take advantage of the situation. Officer Baker had found a kindred soul running the Mexican War on Drugs Program. They both knew the war was lost before it even started. It was a mutual agreement to turn this golden opportunity into a cash cow. They had come up with a plan to use the equipment given to them by the U.S. government to their own advantage. Why settle for the meager income their respective positions paid when they had the chance to become rich?

Officer Baker said, "Now, here is what I am willing to do for you. I can overlook this patch of contraband and we can come to some agreement on a price to do so, or I can tell the pilot to spay your field and turn you over to the local law enforcement."

Rafael knew he was caught between a rock and a hard spot. Losing his crop was bad enough, but he knew a ride with the local policia would most likely be a one-way trip.

"Now, I don't want you to think this is the end of the world." Officer Baker continued. "What I have in mind is more like forming a union for you growers. You can call it a 'cartel' if you like. We will have someone show up to help you harvest. They will brick up the pot into kilos. A twenty-five dollar fee will be paid on each kilo you produce, and of course you will be expected to spilt the money you get from your buyer. For this, we allow you to keep growing and also provide protection from any further harassment by any law enforcement or from anybody else."

"I don't see I have much of a choice, señor." Rafael said, looking into Officer Baker's mirrored glasses.

"Well, I guess you don't. I'll expect to meet your buyer soon. I will want him to start handling some of our other products for us too. If he doesn't handle Cocaine and Smack now, I'm sure he will when he finds out the money that can be made. We can even arrange a no worry crossing at the border for an additional fee. Here is a number you can reach us through. I'll be expecting a call. Have a nice day." Officer Baker signaled the other officers and Rafael was soon left standing in the dust from the departing helicopter.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Christine & A Marriage of Inconvenience

Title: A Marriage of Inconvenience
Author: Christine Young
Genre: Historical Romance
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 4

Buy at:


When the duchess decides to wed her to a wastrel and a fop, Ravyn Grahm takes matters into her own hands and declares her engagement to another man. Instead of fessing up and telling her great aunt what she has done, she goes through with the pretense. Aric Lakeland is the bastard son of an earl and has a dangerous reputation. But Ravyn is willing to do most anything to keep the duchess from discovering the lie.


He'd bought land in America, looking to put down roots and end his life of adventure, but Aric Lakeland got more than he bargained for when he encountered a beautiful heiress who made a promise she didn't want to keep. But the promise could not be undone and standing between them were more obstacles than either ever dreamed. Aric had made plans to spend the rest of his life in America and that was at odds with Ravyn's plan of living in England and running her father's estate. Now, he'll have to choose between his dreams and the woman he loves more than life.


Aric Lakeland dodged foot-traffic along the boulevard in a crazy attempt to keep up with the bouncing erratic carriage he followed. The day was intolerably hot and his mood was no better. He resented this mission. He’d left a cool pub and a cold brew to sweat beneath the hot sun.

His idea of fun was not traipsing after a notorious gambler and womanizer. Nor did he want to baby sit a spoiled debutante.

Yet, he’d promised. A wave of guilt washed through him.

Sweat beaded on his forehead, dripping down his face. He swiped it with the back of his hand and sidestepped, nearly knocking packages from a lady just exiting a dressmaker’s shop.

“You owe me, my friend. When this is done, I will collect,” he swore beneath his breath and began thinking of all the favors he might ask of his half brother.

The carriage he followed turned a corner and disappeared from sight. He plowed into a lamppost, swore again and raced through the crowds. Richy Richmond did not deserve this absurd protection. Richy could deal with his own affairs. The other part of his half brother’s request bothered Aric. He did not want anything to happen to the lady he followed. His half brother had reason to believe Richy might do something to compromise her. His gut instincts had never been wrong. Ravyn Grahm, cousin to his half brother’s wife, was in serious trouble.

Richy’s carriage came to an abrupt halt. Richy jumped from the vehicle. His cane in hand, he strode toward a dress shop Aric had reason to visit on occasion.

Aric watched, fascinated as the scene unfolded. He started forward but noticed Richy race to protect the women Aric followed. 

“You ruffians!  Get your hands off me!”  The white-haried Duchess shrieked, her age-lined face mottled with rage, pushing at two little guttersnipes who seemed more intent on shoving the elderly woman around than stealing the packages she carried.

Ravyn swiped her parasol across a boy’s head and turned to the other, her eyes blazing, shooting violet blue sparks.

“Stop it!” she cried out, raising her parasol again and again. “Take that!  And that!”

Amused, Aric leaned against a lamppost similar to the one he had run into earlier in his race to keep Richy’s carriage in view.

He crossed his arms over his chest, grinning as he watched Ravyn batter the boys who had had the audacity to try and harm the Duchess.

He chuckled, prepared to step in if needed but it appeared the two women had the situation under control. Ravyn, he mused, the regal, classy lady who seldom had a hair on her gorgeous head out of place was decidedly disheveled. Her cheeks were flushed, her hair flowed beautifully from its perfectly coiffed hairdo. Her jacket sleeve was torn and to his amazement, she grinned as if she were having the time of her life.

“Go on, get,” Richy stepped in, shooing the two boys away. He grabbed hold of one of the boy’s arms and shook him. “Patrol,” he yelled, looking around for help. The boy stomped on Richy’s foot. Surprised, Richy let go. “Bloody hell!  Come back here. Little brat,” he yelled as the boy ran off.

Aric cocked an eyebrow, watching and wondering what would happen next, knowing Richy had a card up his sleeve. He had not forgotten he was supposed to be watching Richy, nor had he forgotten the man had suffered innumerable losses at the gaming tables and the racetrack the last few days and he might do something to Ravyn.

Aric pushed away from the lamppost and strode toward the women and Richy. He watched Richy change demeanor. Suddenly instead of rescuer, he was attacker. Aric’s heart stopped for a moment then raced.

Richy wrenched Ravyn against him, pulling her close, her arm behind her back, his mouth close to her ear as if he whispered something to Ravyn.

“Let go,” Ravyn cried out, twisting and thrashing her arms. It seemed to be the opposite scenario as moments before. The crowds that had previously closed around the women had now dissipated.

“Let go,” Ravyn cried again. 

“You’re mine, Ravyn,” Richy said in a low well-modulated voice. “You should have realized it months ago and I’d have won the wager. But instead, you ignored me. You taunted me and sometimes you pretended to care while other times you turned up your pert little nose when I walked by.”

“What do you think you are doing?  Let go of me!”  Ravyn cried out, hatred now in her stormy violet eyes.

To Aric, she sounded incredulous, perhaps confused. But strangely, not afraid.

“We--“he paused a moment--“are going to Gretna Green. We are getting married and I will inherit your estate. You will be mine.”

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Christine Presents: The Wager

The Wager
Christine Young
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level:

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Coast of England 1816

"It's a bloody cursed day." Damian Andrews swept the child into his arms and waded through the pounding surf to the beach. He braced himself against the out-going current then sloshed through the crashing waves. Salt spray clung to the wind, stinging his nostrils.

Damian turned. Beneath his ribs, his heart pounded the cadence hard and fast. He swore again as he watched the captain shout orders to his crew. The French brandy that was supposed to have arrived this night would have to wait.

Standing in the longboat, the captain of the ship that brought the brandy as well as the political refugees from the Germanies held a torch aloft--the only light in the vast darkness. "Hurry, laddie. We have human cargo tonight and the tide is changing."

A little girl whimpered.

Damian pulled her into his arms, bent on protecting her at all cost.

"It's all right. You will all be together soon." The smuggling of French brandy was a cover for the cause that meant so much to him. Religious and political refugees--at times it seemed they came in droves. All were seeking a better life. A life of freedom. "Your mother is coming as well as your baby brother. You will all be safe."

Damian looked to the captain. "The father?" he queried.

"He didn't come with his family. He said he had one more thing to do. You must hurry."

The child leaned into Damian, her little face nuzzling his shoulder, her silent sobs gut-wrenching. He pulled her closer, cursing at the elements as well as mankind and wishing he could find a way to shield the tiny child from all harm. He knew the feat to be impossible. The little girl touched a place in his heart and for a moment filled that broken space with light. Yes, the mother would be with her children, but why had the father stayed where his life was in peril? He had learned long ago one could come to regret rash actions. And he'd also learned one could lose all chance at love in one instant.

Lord, but he'd lost his concentration and in losing that, he could well lose his edge.

No secrets-- no lies. The thought haunted him.

His life was a lie, but he would change nothing until his penance was paid. A constant drizzle soaked him to the skin. The wind sent goose bumps rising on his arms. He reached shore and handed the girl over to Aric Lakeland, a trusted friend and accomplice in this night's work, then turned and walked back to the longboat. Her baby brother as well as her mother waited.

He had never meant to get involved. It was the greatest of ironies that he was here now. He'd been a man who loved his family and his home.

He'd been content but that seemed years ago--a life time.

It felt like centuries.

The captain spoke, his voice hushed. "Hurry, now, Master Damian.

It's the watch. They are due to ride by here any time now. The patrols have doubled these last few weeks. I fear it's not as safe as it used to be." The captain handed over the baby wrapped in blankets. Damian stared at the child. The babe couldn't be a year old. The child didn't make a sound, not even a whimper.

This was injustice, a travesty. He looked at the mother. "Can you make it on your own?" He prayed the fragile lady standing before him had more courage than she appeared to have. She nodded and with the captain's help, she stepped into the ocean, struggling for balance. Yet her shoulders were squared and her spine stiff.

As soon as the captain placed the babe in Damian's arms and the three of them were headed for land, he gave orders. Two sailors rowed out to sea, moving toward the black ship that rose and fell on the distant waves.

On a cliff above, the dark silhouette of a third man, Ryder McClaren, could be seen for a brief moment. He waved his arms then disappeared into the shadows once more.

"Hurry," Damian bade the mother, his hand resting on the small of her back, urging her forward.