★ Blog Tour ★ ORCHARD AT THE EDGE OF TOWN by Sherlee McCoy — Excerpt + Giveaway!


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A Print Copy of ORCHARD AT THE EDGE OF TOWN!



Apple Valley #3
Shirlee McCoy
Release Date: July 28th, 2015
Publisher: Kensington—Zebra


Apple Valley, Washington, is where starting over means surprising new chances, facing trouble always brings a helping hand—and the most unlikely hopes can forever come true…

Apricot Sunshine Devereux-Miller needs to stay lost. Her eccentric aunt's home in Apple Valley is the perfect place to forget her cheating ex-fiancé and get her no-longer-perfect life back under control. Plus, it couldn't hurt to fix up the house and turn its neglected orchard into a thriving business. And if Apricot can keep Deputy Sheriff Simon Baylor's two lively young daughters out of mischief, maybe she can ignore that he’s downright irresistible—and everything she never dreamed she'd find ...

Simon isn't looking to have his heart broken again. He already has his hands full raising his girls. And lately he's thinking way too much about Apricot's take-charge energy and unwitting knack for stirring up trouble. He can't see a single way they could ever be right for each other. Unless they can take a crazy chance on trusting their hearts—and risking the courage to finally find their way home.


Exclusive Excerpt of ORCHARD AT THE EDGE OF TOWN!

“So, Anna,” he spoke into the silence, “I’m curious.” 
            “About?” She turned to face him, her gaze direct. 
            If she were hiding anything, she wasn’t showing it. 
            “Rose Devereux didn’t mention anything about a woman named Anna coming for a visit.” 
            She sighed. “She wouldn’t. Anna isn’t my given name. It’s my professional name. If I can find my wallet, I’ve got some business cards.” 
            She started digging through the purse, but the thing was so small, he thought she’d have found the wallet by now if it were there. He took it from her hand, set it on the counter. “I think we both know this little tiny bag doesn’t have a wallet in it. So, how about you just explain what kind of work you do that you need a professional name?” 
            She blinked, a smile slowly curving the edges of her mouth. A real smile this time, it made her eyes sparkle and showed off a dimple in her right cheek. “Good grief! You don’t think I’m a . . .” She snorted and shook her head. “I own a nursery in LA. I got tired of explaining my given name to every Tom, Dick, and Harry who met me, so I decided to go by Anna.” 
            “And your given name is?” 
            “Apricot. Just like Aunt Rose said. If you want the whole legal mess, it’s Apricot Sunshine Devereux-Miller.” 
            He did not laugh, but God! He wanted to. 
            “Apricot Sunshine, huh? Your parents—” 
            “Were hippies, are hippies, will always be hippies. I lived in a commune for the first sixteen years of my life.” She smiled again. “And having to give that explanation thousands of times is exactly why I go by Anna. Now, if I could just find my wallet, I could prove my identity, and you could be on your way, Officer . . . ?” 
            “Deputy Simon Baylor.” He offered his hand, and she gave it a firm, quick shake. No nonsense. That was the impression she was giving off. 
            Her big pink dress was giving off another impression altogether. It was saying froufrou and fluffy, a little flighty and scattered. 
            “Right. Deputy Baylor. I do have an ID and I do have business cards. They’re probably in my truck. I’d volunteer to go get them, but I’m sure you have better things to do with your time than wait for me to do that.” 
            He did have things to do. Daisy worked at the library, and if he knew one thing about his sister-in-law, it was that she liked to be the first in every morning. 
            When he worked graveyard, she spent the night with the twins so he wouldn’t have to hire a babysitter, but she was always dressed and ready for work when he arrived home. He tried to be respectful of her time, leave work as soon as the shift was over, get home well before she actually needed to be at work, but right then, he really was curious about Apricot Sunshine Devereux-Miller, and he wasn’t in all that much of a hurry to leave. “I’ve got time.” 
            “Perfect,” she responded. “I’ll just hop back on my bike—” 
            “The Schwinn that’s sitting on the porch?” The one that looks like it should be ridden by Dorothy or by the Wicked Witch of the West? 
            “That would be the one,” she responded. “Unless you want to offer me a ride. In which case, I could avoid the humiliation of pedaling a 1940s Schwinn in this 1980s monstrosity of a dress.” 
            “I’ll drive you to your truck.” The girls wouldn’t be awake for another twenty minutes, and Daisy didn’t have to be at the library until eight thirty. He could give Apricot a ride, check her ID, make sure everything she said was kosher. Give himself a little more to smile about, because he was smiling. The pink dress, the tumbling-over hair, the image of Apricot pedaling along the dirt road was probably the most amusement he’d had in a good long while.

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Shirlee McCoy spent her childhood making up stories and acting them out with her sister. It wasn’t long before she discovered Nancy Drew, The Hardy Boys, her mother’s gothic romances . . . and became an ardent fan of romantic suspense. She still enjoys losing herself in a good book. And she still loves making up stories. Shirlee and her husband live in Washington and have five children.

Readers can visit her website at www.shirleemccoy.com.



✆ THE 9TH GIRL by Tami Hoag ✆ Cove Podcast: Episode 56

Hi Listeners!

Here's our podcast discussion of the July 2015 pick, THE 9TH GIRL by Tami Hoag!

Are you a fan of the Kovak/Liska series? Comment below and let us know your thoughts if you've read the book!




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★ Blog Tour ★ PERFECT TOUCH by Elizabeth Lowell — Excerpt + Giveaway!


We're so excited to share bestselling author Elizabeth Lowell's latest novel, PERFECT TOUCH, as part of the blog tour organized by Tasty Book Tours! 

Be sure to check out the exclusive excerpt from the book, and enter the giveaway below! Good luck!


by Elizabeth Lowell
Release Date: July 28, 2015
Publisher: William Morrow

Blurb:

Sara Medina is a designer and art dealer from San Francisco. She matches her clients desires with fine and folk art from the world over--living up to her thriving business named Perfect Touch

She still remembers her rural childhood of hard work and poverty on the family dairy farm, but she keeps it firmly in the past as she searches out new artwork and artists that are on the breaking edge of acclaim. After she experienced the cultural riches San Francisco had to offer, she decided her life would be that of an urban career woman rather than a working mom commuting from the suburbs. With the intensive hours and travel required to grow her business to the next level, she has no time or energy left for romantic or family entanglements.

Jay Vermillion recently inherited Vermillion Sky, a ranch that nestles up to Wyoming’s Grand Teton Mountains--and the estates of the rich and restless. As a returned veteran of numerous deployments over the course of two wars, he finds himself wrestling with the demands of a ranch that has been run down during his father’s long illness. Between the urgent need to modernize and revitalize the Vermillion Sky, as well as an unexpected and vicious fight with his former stepmother over the custody of now-valuable paintings that were part of his father’s estate, Jay has no time for finding a wife and creating a sixth generation of Vermillions to ensure the family legacy continues.

When Jay hires Sara to appraise and market his father’s cache of paintings by Harris “Custer” Armstrong, neither one expects the explosive results of their eventual meeting in Jackson, Wyoming. In addition to a mutually inconvenient attraction, they a discover double murder at the edge of the ranch lands and a potential betrayal even closer to home. All trails lead to Custer’s artworks as valuable enough to kill for, especially an unknown painted rumored to be called The Muse.

As Sara and Jay unravel the motive for the killings, they both discover that love, like murder, doesn’t wait for a convenient time. On the heels of that soul-shattering realization, Sara is targeted for murder. Suddenly, the war-weary soldier finds something he is once again willing to die for…


Exclusive Excerpt from Perfect Touch!

Even as that irritated thought crossed her mind, she hesitated. The call could be from Jay Vermilion, the man who had dozens of fine art paintings that could kick her career up to the next level. Paintings with the potential to be so valuable that they’d been the part of a hotly contested divorce settlement for more than a decade. 
Maybe, just maybe, she thought, one of those paintings is the fabled Muse, the only portrait painted by Custer. 
That would explain why the legal battle had even outlived the original owner of the paintings, JD Vermilion. JD had passed away several months ago, and his much-younger ex-wife, Liza, was suing JD’s estate to gain access to the art her former husband had begun collecting before she’d even been a teenager in braces. With the passing of her ex, Liza had simply turned her lawyers loose on the primary heir to JD Vermilion’s estate—his son Jay. 
Sara’s mouth curved slightly as she continued walking. I’ve never met the infamous Liza Neumann, once Vermilion. But with possession being nine-tenths of the law, I’d put money on Captain Jay Vermilion keeping his ex-stepmother’s grasping hands off the undiscovered Armstrong “Custer” Harris paintings in the future, as well.The retired army veteran who had recently inherited the family ranch—the fruit of generations of his Vermilion ancestors—had a grit and determination to him that came right through the phone line. 
You haven’t even met the man, Sara reminded herself. She fished the cellular out of her tight front pocket at last, glanced at it, and saw the call had gone to voicemail. She palmed the phone and gave a mental shrug. It wasn’t a Wyoming number calling, which meant it wasn’t the Sheriff. 
Or Jay, damn it. 
Think of the good Captain like any other potential client who calls you during business hours to get advice on Western art, she told herself firmly.
Impossible. 
Jay Vermilion might be a potential client, but he was also the man she had been talking to half the nights for the past few months. At first it had been all business, but somehow the conversations had quickly evolved into … more. I don’t know how I could talk about myself and my work and my dreams like that with someone I’ve never met. And he talked to me, too, about the ranch and weather and the Western woman he hoped to find and marry and beget the seventh generation of Vermilions. 
We have such different lives and goals, it’s surprising we had so much to talk about in the first place.



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About the Author:
Elizabeth Lowell’s exciting novels of romantic suspense include New York Times Bestsellers: Dangerous Refuge, Beautiful Sacrifice, Death Echo, The Wrong Hostage, Amber Beach, Jade Island, Pearl Cove, and Midnight in Ruby Bayou. She has also written NYT best-selling historical series set in the American West and Medieval Britain. 

She has more than 80 titles published to date, with over 24 million copies of her books in print. She lives in the Sierra Nevada Mountains with her husband, with whom she writes novels under a pseudonym. Her favorite activity is exploring the Western United States to find the landscapes that speak to her soul and inspire her writing.

Author Links:  Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads





★ Release Day Blast ★ RELEASE ME by Ann Marie Walker & Amy K. Rogers + Guest Post + $50 Amazon Gift Card!


Enter to Win 
$50.00 Amazon eGift Card!

And don't miss our exclusive guest post—

The authors cast their characters!



Chasing Fire #2
Ann Marie Walker & Amy K. Rogers
Release Date: July 21, 2015
Publisher: Berkley/Intermix


The second in the "seriously sexy and sinfully steamy" Chasing Fire series, about a pain too deep to forgive and a passion too hot to forget...

Alessandra Sinclair knows that Hudson Chase is the last man she should want. The boy from the wrong side of the tracks has grown into a man who would do anything to get ahead, even if it means breaking Allie's heart. But whenever she's near him, the attraction between them is undeniable. And now that they're working together, keeping her distance from Hudson is almost as impossible as keeping her feelings in check...

Hudson already lost Allie once and he refuses to lose her again. He's determined to use their new business partnership to rekindle the spark he knows is still there. Only the closer he gets to winning her over, the clearer it becomes there are still secrets that could tear them apart for good...


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"Casting Our Novel"

by Ann Marie Walker & Amy K. Rogers

   
Hudson Chase
Age: 29
Eyes: blue
Hair: unruly dark brown waves
Occupation: CEO, Chase Industries
“Tell me you what you want,” he said, his voice tight with restraint. A second later the blindfold lifted away. “Open your eyes and tell me that you want me.”

  


Alessandra "Allie" Sinclair
Age: 27
Eyes: hazel
Hair: soft blonde curls
Occupation: Director of Fundraising, Better Start
“It doesn’t change anything.” Allie’s eyes drifted shut. “You have to let me go, Hudson. Release me.”




Harper Hayes
Age: 25            
Eyes: green
Hair: red
Occupation: Assistant Director of Fundraising, Better Start
“What are friends for if not to binge on Chinese food and borrow your designer handbags?”





Nick Chase
Age: 22
Eyes: brown
Hair: unruly dark brown waves
Occupation: None
“Yo, dude, you have eighty rooms in this joint. Get one.”







Julian Laurent
Age: 32
Eyes: Green
Hair: Light Brown
Occupation: Sole heir to the Laurent family fortune
"They’d find more than just this skeleton if they start to dig,” he said. His words reeked of condescension. “The brother alone could fill an entire tabloid.”





Though thousands of miles apart, Ann Marie Walker and Amy K. Rogers are in constant contact, plotting story lines and chatting about their love of alpha males, lemon drop martinis and British supermodel, David Gandy. You can find them on Twitter as @AnnMarie_Walker and @Amy_KRogers



Amy K. Rogers


Ann Marie Walker


Haven't Joined the #HudsonChasers?


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★ Book Review ★ THE HYPNOTIST by Gordon Snider!

We're excited to share our review of THE HYPNOTIST by Gordon Snider for TLC Book Tours!

The HypnotistAbout The Hypnotist

• Paperback: 324 pages
• Publisher: Helm Publishing (August 3, 2009)

Synopsis:

In 1906, San Francisco has reached the peak of its golden age. Fortunes have created a society that attracts European opera singers and cordon bleu chefs. It is a world defined by elegant balls, oysters, and champagne. But there are darker sides to the city as well. The Mission district south of Market Street houses tenements where shanties huddle together and rats plague the streets. And nearby sits Chinatown, an endless warren of dark alleys that offers gambling, prostitution, and opium, all controlled by vicious gangs, called tongs.

Into these disparate worlds steps Marta Baldwin, a young woman who has shunned her own social background to help the poor. She is confronted by a hypnotist, a man who hypnotizes young women from the tenements and delivers them to the tongs in Chinatown to work in their brothels. Marta escapes his hypnotic trance, but when her assistant, Missy, disappears, Marta realizes she has been taken by the evil man who confronted her. She seeks the help of Byron Wagner, one of San Francisco's most prominent citizens. Marta finds herself drawn to Byron but knows his high social standing prevents any possibility of a relationship between them. This is confirmed when Marta discovers Byron having an intimate conversation with Lillie Collins, the daughter of one of the city's most elite families. Marta is flushed with jealousy. However, Lillie defies social customs, and her rebellious nature fits naturally with Marta's. Despite her envy, the two women become close friends. Marta is caught up in a whirlwind of opulent balls, opium dens and brothels, and police raids in Chinatown. She cannot deny her feelings for Byron, but she must save Missy and protect her new friends from harm...

For lurking in the background is the hypnotist. He has become obsessed with Marta and will use all his guile to ensnare her. When he threatens those she loves, Marta is determined to stop him, even at her own peril. Will her boldness entrap her? If so, how can she hope to escape the man's hypnotic embrace?

Then the earth trembles, and Marta's world will never be the same.


Cove Member Robin Reviews!


Something evil is preying on young women on the streets of San Francisco in 1906. The missing women are poor, and if they have any family they do not report them to the police but rather assume that they are runaways. The women seem to disappear without a trace; there are no signs of a struggle or any witnesses. 
Marta Baldwin, a young woman with social status has set up a business, using her inheritance, to help the poor. On one of her trips to visit her clients, she has a very odd and unexplainable experience.  She runs into a very odd man wearing a ring with a very distinctive jewel. Her gaze is locked on the man and the ring and she is drawn into a fugue-like state in which she feels like she is drowning, but for some reason unbeknownst to her or the man trying to take her hostage, she is able to break out of the spell and avoids disaster. Marta begins to piece things together what is happening when Missy, her employee, tells her about the missing girls and the mysterious man who is capturing them with his “spells.” Marta believes that the predator is hypnotizing the young women, and that she was one of his targets. 
When Missy goes missing, Marta knows that The Hypnotist has taken Missy because of his failed attempt with her. In order to save Missy, Marta has to learn about the art of hypnosis and the tongs in Chinatown. She also has to set herself up as a target on the seedier side of San Francisco. The Hypnotist has never failed to deliver his targets to his clients and Marta is in grave danger, as his rage becomes a mad obsession to “get the one that got away.” 
The Hypnotist is a spine-tinglingly creepy historical thriller. The author draws the reader back in time to the 1900’s in San Francisco and vividly renders the sharp contrasts between the “haves and have nots” and the stark inequality between men and women during that timeframe. 
The characters in The Hypnotist are well developed.  The author shifts to first person to allow the reader to get into the mindset of The Hypnotist and he is a seriously twisted, psychotic and dangerous character on par with Steven King’s creepier protagonists. The author has created his own form of hypnosis with his richly written novel, and captures the reader under his spell from the first page.  This book is a hauntingly good read that was just too good to put down.

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Gordon SniderAbout Gordon Snider

Gordon Snider has written three non-fiction books, including his latest, I’m Travelling as Fast as I Can, which takes a humorous journey to far-away-places around the world.

When he moved to California’s Central Coast in 1999, he began writing fiction. The Origamist is his fifth novel and a sequel to his third, The Hypnotist, a very popular historical thriller that is set in San Francisco in 1906. The other novels include: Sigourney’s Quest, an adventure story about a woman’s harrowing journey across Tibet; The Separatist, a mystery/suspense novel set in modern San Francisco; and Venice Lost, an adventure/fantasy about a man who becomes lost in time in Venice, Italy.

Gordon has lived in California nearly his entire life. Home has ranged from Los Angeles to San Francisco, with stops in Santa Barbara and Pismo Beach. Currently, he and his wife, Fe, enjoy walking the beaches and observing the migrating whales from their home in Pismo Beach. It is, he says, the perfect setting for creative writing.

Find out more about Gordon and his books on his website.