Christmas Countdown Blitz, Day 12 – Caitlyn’s Christmas Wish @llwalkerauthor @LovingtheBook

Laura L. Walker grew up in a large family in the beautiful Gila Valley of southern Arizona. From the time Laura was young, ideas for stories bombarded her brain. She would spend hours drawing her characters on paper and fantasizing about their adventures. Life became more serious, however, when Laura met her own hero while at college in northern Arizona and they later became the parents of six children. In between spurts of grocery shopping, sewing costumes or quilts, transporting kids to practices, and making dinner, Laura still enjoys putting her imagination to good use. Laura is the author of two LDS contemporary romances, Pierced by Love and The Matchup. Caitlyn’s Christmas Wish is her first e-novella.

Q & A With The Author

What is the hardest thing you’ve ever done?

Even though I’ve lived through several difficult events, I would have to say the hardest thing for me is raising my six children. I love them all to pieces and wouldn’t trade them for the world, but each of them has presented unique challenges to me. As their mother, collectively, I feel exhausted at times but am especially proud when they accomplish or pull through something that was hard for them.

Please, tell us a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

True story: My favorite all-time movie is The Sound of Music. As a tween, I was absolutely enthralled with that story (and to this day, I can’t even explain why). Maybe it was the songs Julie Andrews sang, maybe it was her character or the gorgeous scenery . . . I’m not sure. For me, all of the story elements in that movie combined to make the perfect story for me. I watched it so many times on television that my adult brothers now will not allow their wives to watch it. This is something I only found out about a few years ago when I was sitting at a table with my sisters-in-law. I was stunned and felt so bad that I ruined it for them.

Connect with the Author here: 

Just when former model and single mother Caitlyn Drevier Reel has finally put her life back on track after a divorce and six-month stint in rehab, she is surprised to receive an invitation from her ex-in-laws to spend Christmas with the family. After all, she reasons, her ex-husband Grant is constantly on the road with his band and it’s only fair to allow them to get to know her young son, Brody. What Caitlyn isn’t prepared for, however, is the spark of attraction she feels for Ridge, Grant’s older brother, or the sense of belonging to their wonderful family once again. Ridge, who is recovering from his own personal heartache, seems to feel the same about her. As they work together to ensure the success of the Winter Festival that his parents have organized for their small Wyoming town, Caityln begins to envision a bright future. But will Grant’s unexpected arrival keep her Christmas wish from coming true?

 ~ Amazon ~ Amazon UK

Top Ten List:
  1. My hubby and children 
  2. Red roses 
  3. Chocolate chip cookies 
  4. Swimming pools 
  5. Writing 
  6. Clean and uplifting romances 
  7. Music 
  8. Quiet (when the music is finished and the kids have gone to bed) 
  9. Pumpkins 
  10. Thanksgiving and Christmas
To view our blog schedule and follow along with this tour visit our Official Event page 


Christmas Countdown Blitz, Day 11 – All I Want For Christmas @LovingtheBook

Brenda Novak’s latest “digital box set for a cure,” ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS, is a contemporary romance collection of delightful and romantic Christmas stories. It features Brenda’s Rita-nominated novella, “A Dundee Christmas”, as well as stories by some of the biggest romance authors of our time, including #1 New York Times Bestselling Author Debbie Macomber and romance favorites Bella Andre, Melody Anne, Violet Duke, Marie Force, Heather Graham, Laurelin Paige & Kayti McGee, Jane Porter, Melanie Shawn, RaeAnne Thayne, Melinda Curtis, Anna J. Stewart and Scarlett York. The set sells for only $9.99 (less than $1/story) and is up for pre-order now wherever e-books are sold. The box will be released November 1st and will only be available through December 31st.

All the proceeds will go to Boston University to help Dr. Ed Damiano (who also has a son with Type 1) finish engineering the artificial pancreas. Why is his work important? Because the artificial pancreas will go far toward helping insulin-dependent diabetics remain healthy until that elusive biological cure can be found. So, please, pre-order this boxed set today and encourage your friends and family to do the same. You’ll get many hours of enjoyable reading in exchange for a small donation that will help a lot of people.

Q & A With Brenda Novak

Please, tell us a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

When my youngest son was only six, a cousin, older by five years, slipped into the attic where my husband and I were storing a great many things and ferreted out the presents I’d put there at least a month before Christmas. Armed with the knowledge of what those presents were, it seemed he took some kind of perverse pleasure in destroying Thad’s fantasy of Santa Clause. He told Thad everything he was going to get—and let him know that Ted and I had bought each item and tucked it all away for safekeeping until December 25th, when we would pretend that Santa had come down the chimney and left those items for him.

When some children learn the truth, they get angry with their parents for perpetuating this myth. Thad didn’t react that way. He was angry with his cousin for destroying the magic we were trying to keep alive for him. He wasn’t yet ready to let that go. But I had gotten Thad something for Christmas this cousin failed to mention, probably because, in his mind, it was “just a book.” I have to admit Thad didn’t entertain himself with that book first of all. It wasn’t until later in the day, after the excitement of playing with his other toys had worn off a bit, that he and I sat down together to look through THE POLAR EXPRESS.

The book had come with a tape we listened to. I remember both of us being a little awed by the beauty of the illustrations and the way the words rolled off the narrator’s tongue as that tape played—“hot chocolate thick and rich as chocolate bars…” Sometimes I still think of that line, when it may have nothing to do with Christmas. But it was this gift that turned out to be the one I was most grateful I’d purchased because that story helped my little boy get beyond the disappointment of losing Santa Clause.  He took the same ride as the protagonist, who goes to the North Pole and is lucky enough to be selected to receive the first gift of Christmas. He shared that boy’s wonder and his joy when he received the bell from the harness of Santa’s reindeer that was supposed to help him believe in the magic of Christmas. Thad also shared in the disappointment when that bell was lost and was elated when spared the boy that loss by leaving it for him under the tree. Somehow that book softened the jarring blow of reality because it taught Thad that even though there may not be a jolly man dressed in a red suit who delivers toys to all good girls and boys, the magic of Christmas is real—as long as he chooses to believe.

Now I’m much older. But, like the narrator of that book, I can say, “the bell still rings for me.” I hope Thad will always be able to say the same.

All the Assorted Author’s links are on the book’s Amazon page: 
 ~ Amazon ~

5-B POPPY LANE” by Debbie Macomber

Come visit with Helen Shelton, her granddaughter Ruth and Ruth’s husband, Paul. They’ll offer you a cup of mulled cider and the story of how they met.


For Mary Sullivan Christmas has always been about family. As she hangs her ornaments, she’s swept back to the first days of her whirlwind romance with her husband–and the love that would be the foundation on which they built their family.


Brayden Steele gave up his love of Christmas many years ago when he lost his mother and father in a car wreck. But the magic hasn’t given up on him.


If anyone can make Drew Lawson believe in the magic of Christmas, it’s the girl-next-door he’s classified as completely off-limits.


On the occasion of their 40th wedding anniversary, Big Mac and Linda McCarthy take a look back at how they came to be, while each of their children confront a new challenge in their own lives.

SPIRIT OF THE SEASON” by Heather Graham”

While struggling to raise her newly orphaned nephew, Davey, widow Becky Wexham must deal with the feelings she experiences when she once again comes into contact with Tim Yeagher, an old flame and Davey’s Little League coach.


Welcome to Dundee, Idaho, where the town is small but the hearts of the people living in it are large. A woman seeking refuge in an unfamiliar town during a snowstorm is taken in by a man who helps her discover a new sense of home.

UNMATCHABLE” by Laurelin Paige and Kayti McGee

After Jane Osborne is unceremoniously dumped by a rich man, and then invited to his wedding, on (Christmas Eve no less), she decides to hire a date from Craigslist and pass him off as an upgrade.


When his goddaughter, Daisy, is orphaned, confirmed bachelor Cormac Sheenan adopts her. All goes well until Marietta’s seasonal Santa Claus promises his daughter a mommy for Christmas.


For the movie star and the single mom, will a Christmas Wish become their new reality?


Widow and caterer Jenna Wheeler is determined to spin Christmas into the stuff of magic for her four children, even if that means helping out her new landlord, sexy billionaire Carson McRaven..


Simon Castle’ s on his way to a make-or-break meeting unseasonably scheduled for December 25–until the gorgeous redhead subbing for his limo driver takes him on a detour.


Can carpenter Hamish MacFadden show free-spirit Essie Goodman how magical family–and Christmas–can be?

CRUEL INTENTIONS” by Scarlett York

For fans of Pretty Little Liars…It’s hard to be a rhinestone in a diamond world…I was far from living the dream, but now I’m stuck in a nightmare of lies, deceit….and murder. Merry Christmas to me.

~ Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble ~ iBooks


Brenda Novak’s Top Ten List

  1. Brenda has been on a reality TV show (as a judge for cover models).
  2. Brenda has met Fabio.
  3. Brenda started writing because she caught her daycare provider drugging her children with cough syrup to get them to sleep all day while she worked as a loan officer.
  4. Brenda edits her work while riding an Exercycle (daily).
  5. Brenda comes off as an extrovert but is really an introvert.
  6. Brenda has raised nearly $2.6 million for diabetes research.
  7. Brenda has written nearly 60 books.
  8. Brenda has just become a grandmother for the first time with the birth of her grand daughter, Ella Rose.
  9. Brenda was with the same editor from the beginning of her career until just last June, when Paula Eykelhof retired (very unusual in the publishing world).
  10. Brenda’s dream is to visit Antarctica.
To view our blog schedule and follow along with this tour visit our Official Event page 


Christmas Countdown Blitz, Day 10 – A Christmas Village @LovingtheBook


Ann Acton lives with her husband and children in a tiny town in Washington state. She loves the feeling of Christmas and usually finishes her shopping on Christmas Eve. She is also the author of The Miracle Maker.

Liz Adair, a native of New Mexico and mother of seven, lives in southern Utah with Derrill, her husband of 50 years.
A late bloomer, Liz published her first mystery (The Lodger) just as AARP started sending invitations to join. After writing three in the Spider Latham series, Liz moved into romantic suspense. She feels writing in that genre doing so is a service project. “I remember when I was a young mother with all those kids and a slender budget,” she says. “I was so grateful for books that let me go places and meet people who carried on adult conversations That’s what I want to write–cheap vacations.”
“Amy’s Star” brings both Liz and her writing to Kanab, Utah. Look for new Spider Latham mysteries set in Kanab.

Terry Deighton lives in Washington, the state not D.C., with her husband, Al. Their six children are grown and gone, and pets tend to complicate life. When she is not visiting her children and grandchildren, writing and revising, again and again, she works as a substitute teacher. Mr. Goetz in the Tweaks series is wiser and cooler, but he’s made up, so it doesn’t count. Mrs. Deighton started out to be a high school English teacher, but raising kids turned into a full-time job. During those years, her dream of writing books for young people grew until she had to do something about it. Her Tweaks series is a fulfillment of that dream. Her love of Christmas naturally prompted her to write “Whit’s End” in this book and “Just Say No-el,” a companion novella to these three stories.

Connect with the Authors here: 

 These three Christmas novellas will get you into the holiday spirit. 
Christmas Gift – Christmas for Amanda Grover is usually a chaotic marathon in search of the perfect gifts. This year, she thinks she’s got it all under control—until she’s roped into doing service on Christmas Eve. What should be a simple night turns into a series of chaotic events and a gift she never expected.
Amy’s Star: A Spider Latham Christmas Story – A new star rises above the southern Utah town of Kanab and draws some surprising visitors on Christmas Eve.
At Whit’s End – When Whitney Saunders and her husband buy their first home, it jump starts her desire to make everything, especially Christmas, perfect. She soon finds out it’s more work than she thought, and she begins to wonder what perfect really is.

 ~ Amazon ~  Amazon UKAmazon CA ~

Q & A With  Author Liz Adair

Describe yourself in 50 words or less.

I’m 75 on the outside, 39 on the inside. I still think of myself as tall and statuesque, but who is that hefty, swollen-ankled women looking back at me from the full-length mirror? I’m a hearth-tender, but my explorer husband entices me to experience the wonders of the outside world.

What do you love most in the world?

In all the world, I love family the most. I love the ties that bind generation to generation. I treasure the pictures my heart carries of my little, bird-like grandma, my Auntie-Mame mother, my children as they toddled around my farmhouse kitchen, and the fine people they have become.

What do you fear most?

I’m afraid of the dark. A vivid imagination is great for writing murder mysteries, but it’s a curse on a moonless night when I’m alone, the power’s out, and something’s creaking in the next room.

What is your largest unfulfilled dream, and what are you doing to reach it?

The largest of my few unfulfilled dreams is to hit the USA Today best seller list. To reach it, I’m learning to be a savvy marketer. This last year, I hit #1 in the Amazon Bestseller list and stayed there for almost all day, so I’m making progress.

What is the hardest thing you’ve ever done?

It may be a little indelicate, but I’ll state this: When I was having children, natural childbirth was the usual path chosen. My last child was breech. ‘Nuff said.

Please, tell us a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

This is my Christmas story:

Red Taffeta, by Liz Adair

When I was in the third grade, we moved from southern New Mexico to Wyoming for my father’s work. In the fall, before we knew we were leaving the temperate New Mexico climate, my mother had made me a little black velvet cape for a winter coat. It had a red taffeta lining and was trimmed with a rabbit-fur collar.

The cape was adequate for the first Wyoming autumn months, but then the air turned really cold. The constant wind cut through the two layers of cloth like Mama’s sewing shears, no matter how closely I wrapped the cape around me.

Because of the influx of construction workers, the little housing that was available was very expensive. Our family’s budget didn’t stretch to house rent and a new coat for me.

Two weeks before Christmas, a frigid front swept down from the north, pushed by a howling gale.  In spite of the storm, I had talked my parents into taking us to the movies. I can still see the scene in my mind’s eye: we’re getting ready to go. I’m full of anticipation, and I put on my velvet cape. As the wind whistles outside, Mama stands at the door, her hat on and her purse in her hand. She stars at me for a moment, then two, and she seems to be making up her mind about something. “Go get the box from under my bed,” she says.

I feel the hard linoleum of the floor on my knees as I look under the bed and pull out a substantial box, wrapped in Christmas paper. “Bring it in here,” Mama calls from the front room.

I carry it in and set it on the coffee table. “Open it,” she says.

I tear off the paper. There’s no excitement. Christmas is still two weeks away, and this is just strange. I lift the lid and find a winter coat: gray, nondescript, probably woolen. Mama has me put it on, and I wear it to the movies.

That was in 1949. I don’t remember Christmas morning that year. I don’t remember anything else about that gray winter coat. But to this day, I can remember the way that red taffeta lining felt as it rubbed against my bare, eight-year-old arms.

Snippet from Amy’s Star

At the back door, Spider could see Laurie at the table with Amy opposite. They both looked up as he opened the door.

“Hi,” Laurie said. She smiled, but it wasn’t an automatic, come-from-the-heart, Christmas Eve smile. It was a wooden, brave-faced turning up of her lips.

Amy smiled, too. Hers was genuine. Five-hundred-watt incandescent.

“Hello, girls,” Spider said. “How’s it going?”

“Fantastic,” Amy said.

Laurie cleared her throat. “Amy stopped taking her meds.”

“So I heard.” Spider tipped his head, regarding Amy. “Is that wise?”

Amy covered her face. “No. I know it’s not, but listen.” She let her hands slide down, so her eyes were peeking above her fingertips. “I just wanted to feel the Christmas joy. You don’t know what it’s like to have everything—” She made a horizontal motion. “—even out. I want to feel something this Christmas!”

Spider grimaced. He understood what Amy was saying, and right now he hated the responsibility he had inherited. “This thing with President Obama and the Bethlehem star. It wasn’t real, you know.”

Amy stared at Spider, chewing on her lower lip. “The big black limo? The tinted windows going silently down?” She pantomimed the windows lowering. “The man in the back leaning forward and taking my hand, telling me he had this great thing for me to do? You’re saying it wasn’t real?”

Spider nodded. “That’s what I’m saying.”

Amy looked at Laurie. “It was real to me.”

Ten fun facts about Liz Adair  

  1. I lived in Alaska while it was still a territory.
  2. I was born in Hot Springs, New Mexico, but they changed the name of the town to Truth or Consequences.
  3. The smell of an outhouse doesn’t repel; it brings back memories of staying with Grandma.
  4. I had a small wholesale bakery for 15 years making home-made pies for 22 restaurants.
  5. During my ‘Mother Earth’ decade, I learned to make Mozzarella cheese.
  6. Also, while doing the ‘Mother Earth’ thing, I delivered a baby burro.
  7. I was once fluent in Spanish.
  8. I have seven children: four biological and three adopted.
  9. I’m an intrepid ATVer.
  10. I’ve been married for 53 years.
To view our blog schedule and follow along with this tour visit our Official Event page 


Christmas Countdown Blitz, Day 9 – A Spellbinding Christmas @ChelCOneal @LovingtheBook

Chelsea O’Neal lives in her fantasy world where people can fly, vampires could be real, money is never an issue and the romantic meeting of your true love is a normal happening. When not relaxing in Chelsea-ville, she enjoys talking with animals who talk back and taking long walks with her prince charming.

Actually Chelsea lives in the United States in Nebraska, where she was born and raised, with her black lab Daisey, who hasn’t spoken actual words to her but she is pretty sure Daisey understands her. She is yet to meet her prince charming, though she is quite sure he is out there. Chelsea enjoys working in a library as well as a cosmetologist. She is an avid reader and writing has always been her passion. Chelsea has written three novels and a novella, and she is working on her next book now.
Q & A With The Author:

What is the hardest thing you’ve ever done?

The hardest thing I have ever done is say goodbye to my grandma who died earlier this year.  She was my best friend and I hung out with her every single day. I miss her so much and think of her all the time.

Please, tell us a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

I have been working on a version of the following for a while now, and here it is, a bit sad maybe, but it’s mine. 🙂

Love is vital.

On a cold March morning awakened from a restless foreboding sleep by an alarming ringing phone, my life changed.  “It is time come quick.”

I raced to pull on clothes through fear and hot tears, not stopping to even comb my hair, I raced to my destination, one I had left mere hours before. My grandma is sick and I must go to her, for this might be the last time. We were very close, grandma and I.  I lived with her for some time a result of a happy accident, and visited her every single day after I moved back home. Once in the morning, to help her get ready for the day, a lovely moment spent before the work day then again after I got off work just to talk and see how her day went. I visited her to help her in any way she may need, to show her my love.

We had inside jokes, watched tv, and told stories to each other. I could spend hours just listening to her when she spoke of her life or of her late husband, my grandpa. I loved every moment of it.  Though those moments had an expiration date that seemed to loom coming ever closer to an end I never wanted to see.

In a cold hospital room heavy with disbelief we found out she had cancer, an evil vile monster that was sure to suck her life from her, no matter what we did.  A monster that caused pain and suffering for all, not only the one infected. The surgery, the medicine, the pain and not knowing how long we had filled our precious days to come.  The awful infections that brought about the last birthday celebration my grandma would have, moments we would never have a chance for again. She was gone a month later, not a moment later, but a month.

A month to say all the things you will never get another chance at, a month to soak up the love that you will never feel again, and a measly month to watch the person you love slowly and painfully fade away. I held her hand as she took her last breaths, my heart clenching painfully as her pain ended. Knowing in that moment, I wouldn’t have given up an ounce of the love I have for her, no matter how much it hurt.  It was difficult to tell one you love so much goodbye, knowing you will never see them again in this life. To convey to her how much she meant to you, and how much you hope to be like her one day, the wise, lovely, strong woman you were lucky to know.  She was one of my best friends, and I love her still though she is no longer physically here. Love can hurt and heal, it can bring joy or cause tears, love can fill you and leave you feeling empty. Yet love is something I and most everyone longs for.

Love is not only a universal theme, but a very universal feeling.  Love can describe many things: be it your pet dog, or your favorite shirt, or a family member. I believe that we are made to love, and love fiercely.  Love is a vital part of your life.  Love is at the base of most moments in life, those that take a second or a month.  Love can be the most shocking thing to experience either personally or through fictional characters. Love can help save someone, and can be an intense feeling as you lose someone, it can be the easiest thing to accept or deny. Love is vital.

Connect with the Author here: 

Can Trinity control her power?


Trinity is headed home to celebrate Christmas with her Gran. She hasn’t been back in nearly ten years staying away from the man she has longed for since she was young. The man who has starred in every one of her fantasies, her Gran’s next door neighbor, Travis. As her emotions run high, her inherent magic is let loose.
Can Travis let Trinity in?

Travis never noticed Trinity, but has grown close to her grandmother after the loss of his parents and his uncle. When Trinity comes swirling into the house an attraction flares in him but he fears loosing anyone else in his life.

The more time spent together the attraction grows, so does a new found realization that Trinity has a magic that has captured his heart.

Will this spellbinding Christmas be merry?



Top Ten List:
  1. I love the color green – truly it is an obsession or maybe a  way of life…
  2. I am a lifetime Girl Scout and I earned my Gold Award when I was in High School
  3. I am a huge Potter Head!
  4. I am also a huge fan of The Flash – Love Barry Allen/Grant Gustin!
  5. I am a youth librarian.
  6. have a tattoo of an open book with three birds flying above it.
  7. I went back to school after graduating in 2004. I am earning my Bachelor’s in Creative Writing.
  8. I love to dress up in costume- the crazier the better!
  9. I am a binge you tube watcher – I just love short videos!
  10. My favorite movies to watch are animated children’s movies – I’m a kid at heart.
To view our blog schedule and follow along with this tour visit our Official Event page 


Christmas Countdown Blitz, Day 8 – The Fourteenth Quilt @robyn_echols @LovingtheBook


Robyn Echols currently lives with her husband in California near the “Gateway to Yosemite.” She is a member of Women Writing the West and American Night Writers Association.

She enjoys any kind of history including family history. Currently she is the editor of her local genealogical society newsletter and occasionally gives family history presentations.

When she is not piecing together novel plots, she pieces together quilt blocks.
Q & A With The Author:

What do you fear most?

I fear most being a failure as a mother.

Now that we’ve gotten to know each other, tell me a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

In my high school senior class play I played the role of the snotty business woman trying to steal the hero from the sweetheart heroine. For my costume, I brought a knit dress from home that was modest enough, but by the time the make-up artist plastered tons of goop on my face and the costume manager stuffed about three rolls of toilet paper in my bra so I would have the right appearance when I walked out on stage under the floodlights, I looked the part on steroids.

After the play, the cast and crew went to a local pizza parlor to celebrate. Shortly after we sat around a table, about three young men I didn’t know with wide grins on their faces dragged their chairs around our table and began to hit on me. At first I was puzzled. I wasn’t used to drawing that kind of attention. Then I realized we were all still in costume and off-stage and up close, I looked like a hooker.

I stood up, said good-by to my friends, and I was outta there.


Connect with the Author here: 


Annie, Celia and Lynn are all that are left of the Relief Society quilting class, but they are still determined to make baby quilts for the new mothers at church. Annie, who is just south of eighty years old, calls the quiltsters (short for quilting sisters) together to ask for more. She wants to make lap quilts to give to some of the “forgotten” oldsters she sings to each week at the nursing home—something to wrap them in love at Christmastime. It’s a good idea, but the trio discovers that life and making quilts don’t always go as planned.

The quiltsters discuss recipes and quilting ideas including a crocheted cat mat to use up their fabric selvage and trim scraps, all of which they share in the book.

Sarah and Brian meet at the university. Their first date is after Sarah’s First Saturday Block of the Month class she attends with her mom at the local quilt shop. Their romance grows, and they plan their future together—a plan that will require them to be separated for six months before their wedding. But, can they bear to be apart that long?

What wraps together this Christmas tale? The Fourteenth Quilt.


Top Ten List:

  1. I love my computer so I can use it to write stories
  2. I love my sewing machine so I can quilt when I need a break from writing
  3. I love paper and ink books that fill my bookcases
  4. I love my Kindle, Nook and Deseret Book apps because my bookcases are already full of paper and ink books
  5. I love my camera so I can take photographs
  6. I love my photo-editing program so I can tweak my photos so they look even better
  7. I love Yosemite National Park because it is so pretty in any season
  8. I love museums because of all the wonderful historical items they display
  9. I love Columbia State Park and Mono County because they capture the history of the California Gold Rush
  10. I love my car because it comfortably takes me to all my favorite places

To view our blog schedule and follow along with this tour visit our Official Event page 


Christmas Countdown Blitz, Day 7 – Restored Hearts @railynwrites @LovingtheBook

Railyn Stone, author of The Christmas Tree Guy, A Secret to Keep, Restored Hearts and Lest We Aren’t Forgiven, lives in North Carolina with her husband. When she’s not behind the screen of her laptop, she’s usually enjoying time with her family. The only child of two educators, she learned early on just how magical words can be.

Q & A With The Author:

Please, tell us a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

Sometimes doing a favor for someone can cause you a tremendous amount of trauma. Years ago, my parents stored an old rug for my uncle. He was in the process of moving, but I guess at the time, he wasn’t able to transport it to his new place and needed a place to keep it until he could pick it up. That weekend he dropped it off on our front porch but once the evening came, my parents brought it in the house to keep it from getting rained on overnight. The next morning came and we were back in our normal routine of getting ready for the day.

That morning I was in the middle of getting ready for school and I had taken a seat on the floor in my mom’s room to put on my shoes. I was getting myself together while my mom was preparing breakfast. As I sat on the floor, I put on one shoe and as I stretched out my leg, my foot hit my mother’s bag leaning against the dresser. In the blink of an eye, from behind the bag, popped a huge woolly spider that proceeded to take a seat on my leg. Before I could scream or form any words or sounds, he scurried away and I had no idea where he went. The next thing I remember was standing up and finally being able to pull in enough air to scream. I was frozen in the middle of my mom’s room with one shoe on and no idea where the spider was. I could hear my mom running through the hallway to come to my rescue, but I was too afraid to move. She was asking what was wrong, but I couldn’t answer her. I couldn’t do anything. Fear had frozen me in place and I could feel tears starting to flow out of my eyes. I had no idea where the spider was and I just knew I was going to die.

Luckily, my mom is not the type to freeze in a dire situation. As I stood there wondering exactly where the spider was, I didn’t have to wait long. I felt the whoosh of my mom’s hand slide across the back of my neck and heard a thump as the spider landed in the middle of the floor. She quickly took care of the spider and I had never been so happy to see my mom in my life. She later admitted she acted out of pure adrenaline. When she came into the room, she said the only thing she could see was this woolly insect sprawled across the back of my neck and she went into protection mode. It was the most traumatic event I’d ever experienced and to this day I am deathly afraid of spiders.

In reflection, my parents believe the spider had taken up residence in the rolled up rug and had decided to venture out into our home overnight. Needless to say, we never kept another rug for anyone ever again.

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EnVee McAlister just bought a house. It’s an old Victorian home that needs a lot of work, especially if she wants to get into it by Christmas.

Logan Edwards is the contractor she’s hired to help her. Unfortunately, he’s not like any man she’s ever encountered and his arrogance and crass demeanor is making it hard to deal with him. Both she and Logan hold no punches and their terribly blunt personalities clash like oil and water.

But when she finds out about Logan’s tragic past, it forces her to deal with her own insecurities and emotions she’s desperately tried to forget. And instead of a house for Christmas, EnVee receives something she never expected.




Top Ten List:

  1. Chocolate
  2. Spending quality time with my husband
  3. Laughing
  4. Dancing to great music
  5. My mom’s Red Velvet Cake
  6. The color green
  7. Shopping at Sephora
  8. Writing, of course
  9. Hearing a baby laugh
  10. Sitting on a beach watching the waves roll onto the shore – it’s one of the most relaxing feelings
To view our blog schedule and follow along with this tour visit our Official Event page 


Christmas Countdown Blitz, Day 6 – A Candlelight Courting @JoyceDiPastena @LovingtheBook

Joyce DiPastena dreamed of green medieval forests while growing up in the dusty copper mining town of Kearny, Arizona. She filled her medieval hunger by reading the books of Thomas B. Costain (where she fell in love with King Henry II of England), and later by attending the University of Arizona where she graduated with a degree in history, specializing in the Middle Ages. The university was also where she completed her first full-length novel…set, of course, in medieval England. Later, her fascination with Henry II led her to expand her research horizons to the far reaches of his “Angevin Empire” in France, which became the setting of her first published novel, Loyalty’s Web (a 2007 Whitney Award Finalist). 

When she’s not writing, Joyce loves to read, play the piano, and spend time with her sister and friends. A highlight of her year is attending the annual Arizona Renaissance Festival . Joyce is a multi-published, multi-award winning author who specializes in sweet medieval romances heavily spiced with mystery and adventure. She lives with her two cats, Clio and Glinka Rimsky-Korsokov, in Mesa, Arizona.Q & A With The Author:

What is the hardest thing you’ve ever done?

Move all alone to a new city, a new house, and a new life.

Please, tell me a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

I first started dabbling with writing when I was in high school, but it wasn’t until college that I began to understand that “just writing” wasn’t enough, that there were rules for how to write successful fiction and that I needed to learn them. This was long before the internet was around, so I had to go to old fashioned brick-and-mortar bookstores to find books about how to write. The problem was I was horribly insecure about wanting to be a writer. In my mind, writers, and especially “authors”, were people who stood on some kind of glorified pedestal that I knew I could never aspire to. I nonetheless felt compelled to write. So I would go to bookstores and lurk in the “writing” section, always self-conscious that people would see me looking through the writing books and wonder why I would be doing such a thing. Eventually I picked out some titles and had to take them to a cashier to buy them. Almost every time the cashier would say, “Oh, are you a writer?” And I was so insecure, that I would quickly reply, “No, I’m buying them for a friend.” How silly was that? Obviously, hugely silly in hindsight! (And the cashier probably thought, “Yeah, right,” every time I blurted that out. LOL!) I remember being so relieved when I joined the Writers Digest Book Club and could buy writing books by mail so that no one would know that humble little Joyce DiPastena was daring to think she might ever joined the ranks of those glorified published authors. Happily I not only eventually overcame my book shopping insecurities, today I can stand in the writing section of one of the few brick-and-mortar bookstores that are still around and shop without shame, because yes, I am a writer, yes, I’m proud to admit it, and yes, I still have much to learn about how to be a better writer.

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When Burthred comes courting on Christmas Eve, Meg rejects his advances. She has her heart set on becoming a nun and insists that he call her Christina, the spiritual name she has chosen for herself. She tries to make him swear on her box of holy relics that he will not pursue her, but he carefully words his oath to allow him to stay in her candlelit chamber and try to change her mind.

What Meg does not confess is that her reliquary box holds a secret.

Burthred needs a wife, and no one will satisfy him except Meg. He swore on his father’s deathbed that he would marry her. But Burthred has a secret, too. When they come together before the Yule fire, their shared revelations will either join their hearts together or tear them apart.



Top Ten List:
  1. Making up stories set in the Middle Ages

  2. Cats
  3. Chocolate

  4. Spending time with my sister

  5. Sunshine

  6. Going out to eat with friends

  7. Blue skies

  8. Music/playing the piano (can I combine those two?)

  9. Books

  10. Bright, cheerful colors
To view our blog schedule and follow along with this tour visit our Official Event page 


Christmas Countdown Blitz, Day 5 – A Christmas Reunion @donnahatch @LovingtheBook

Donna Hatch, author of the best-selling “Rogue Hearts Series,” as well as over a dozen other published titles, is a hopeless romantic and adventurer at heart, the force that drove her to write and publish seventeen historical titles, to date. She is a multi-award winner, a sought-after workshop presenter, and juggles multiple volunteer positions as well as her six children. Also music lover, she sings and plays the harp, and she loves to ballroom dance. She and her family recently transplanted from her native Arizona to the Pacific Northwest where she and her husband of over twenty years are living proof that there really is a happily ever after.

Q & A With the Author:

What organizations do you recommend for those wanting to become writers?
That depends on what you write. If you write romance, I recommend RWA Romance
Writers of America. If you write children’s or teen books, I recommend SCBWI which stands for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Other options are to find a local Nanowrimo group; from what I know, some offer workshops, others only give encouragement to write a book in a selected month. You could go online and enter local writer’s group in your search engine, and see what comes up. Then visit them a few times to see if you are a good fit with them before you join.
Any advice you’d like to share about writing?
Be humble and teachable. Too many new authors have kind of a chip on their shoulder and are totally closed to constructive criticism. If someone tells you there is an aspect of your story that needs more work, take them at face value; they are almost always right. If they tell you what you should do to fix it, take that with a grain of salt because they are often wrong.


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Heartbroken at the news that her betrothed has wed another woman, Emily is determined to pick up the pieces of her life and enjoy Christmas with her family. ? Newly returned from war, Bennett holds a secret and will do anything to ensure Emily, his only true love, never discovers it…even if it means losing her. Fate reunites the star-crossed lovers and reveals the truth that will either unite them or drive them apart forever.



Top Ten List:
  1. I like cats–kittens are even more fun.
  2. I am a harpist and I teach harp lessons.
  3. Every morning after I get the children off to school, I go for a walk. (At least, that’s always the goal)
  4. I hate spiders. HATE. With a passion.
  5. Due to moves in my childhood, I attended 9 different schools. Being the new kid isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
  6. I love cheesecake just as much as I love chocolate–chocolate cheesecake is even better. Caramel is a close second. Caramel-chocolate cheesecake, anyone?
  7. Currently I’m juggling: a YA dystopian aka speculative fiction, a YA historical paranormal, book 4 of my Rogue Hearts Regency series, and a new Regency trilogy.
  8. I am majorly claustrophobic, which is exactly why, when I had to give my super-warrior weapons master, Kai Darkwood in my fantasy Queen in Exile, some flaw or fear, I chose claustrophobia for his–I understand it.
  9. I love to ballroom dance. LOVE.
  10. I also love bodies of water of any kind–ocean, river, lake, stream, waterfall, backyard garden pond. It just does something for my soul. This is partly why we recently moved from the desert to Washington State. I even love water when it’s falling from the sky. Mermaid, anyone?


To view our blog schedule and follow along with this tour visit our Official Event page 


Christmas Countdown Blitz, Day 4 – Christmas Romance Short Stories @dwhiteauthor @LovingtheBook

Debbie currently lives in northern California where the beautiful landscapes are often the settings in her books. The jagged coastline, the rolling hills with vineyards and the redwood forest make wonderful sceneries for her romance novellas.

When Debbie isn’t writing or traveling to a book signing, she’s visiting her family on the east coast, traveling to other places on her bucket list, enjoying her backyard, hiking with her husband and riding on the back of their motorcycle.

Although she currently writes romance and women’s fiction, Debbie’s book Ties That Bind is categorized as general literary fiction. Based on true events, Ties That Bind holds a special place in her heart.

As an avid animal lover and parent to two rescue dogs, Debbie donates a portion of her proceeds to animal rescue organizations. When you purchase one of her books, you’re also helping a furry pet with shelter, food and ultimately a new home!

Q & A with the Author:

What is the hardest thing you’ve ever done?

Watch my mom die before my eyes as I held her hand.

Please, tell me a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

I was sicker than a dog a few days back. I’m pretty dramatic so I was convinced I was dying. I wasn’t, I was just sick. And I was sick and tired of being sick. My hubby of 41 years stayed home from work to help take care of me. He made me toast, hot tea and even cleaned up after I sort of made a mess. Now, that’s a man worth keeping and might make a good book boyfriend, what do you think? Lol.

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Saving Peters Tree Farm

After the death of her father, Charlotte Peters makes the big decision to move back to Archer Lodge, North Carolina to help her mom and the family’s failing Christmas tree farm. After a quick stop into the local hardware store, Charlotte is confronted with a part of her past she’d nearly forgotten about. Or had she? Can Charlotte stay focused on why she came to Archer Lodge and let the past be the past, or will her heart be broken once again?

Say It Ain’t Snow!

Melissa Curry is desperately trying to save her family’s ski resort. The drought has done everything it can to dry up their business. When she discovers the town council is planning a detour through the city that will likely chase the rest of the tourists away, Melissa jumps into action to save the day and the town.

 ~ Amazon ~ iTunes ~ Barnes&NobleKobo ~

Top Ten List:
  1. I married my high school sweetheart at the young age of 16 and we’ve been married for 40 years. I’ve known him since the sixth grade! I don’t recommend getting married this young, but 1975 was different.
  2. I’ve lived in Panama, Germany and Korea. I’ve traveled to many more countries. I’ve lived in California, Washington, Maine, Idaho, Colorado, Texas, and South Carolina. I’ve traveled through many more.
  3. I was born in a little town (it’s grown up a lot since then), and for a short time lived on a farm. My mom told me that I used to throw ripe tomatoes at the sheep.
  4. I can’t remember a time that I didn’t have some sort of animal in my life. As a young girl it was a cat, dog, and hamsters. As an adult it was a cat, and dogs, and a huge fish aquarium.
  5. My goal after I retire is to travel to Ireland and Scotland – two countries I’ve not seen. In addition, I really want to do a European river cruise.
  6. Animal rescue is dear to my heart. I donate a percentage of all my book sales to organizations.
  7. I currently have two rescue dachshunds, Dash and Briar. You’ll see some pictures of them on my website.
  8. I earned my Bachelors of Arts in Sociology in 2011. I graduated with honors, Magna Cum Laude.
  9. Writing is not something I’ve always dreamed of doing; however my love of books did spark my desire.
  10. My favorite job was working in a library on an Air Force Base in Texas.
To view our blog schedule and follow along with this tour visit our Official Event page





Christmas Countdown Blitz, Day 3 – Color My Christmas @BatesNatalie @LovingtheBook

Natalie-Nicole Bates is a book reviewer and author.

Her passions in life include books and hockey along with Victorian photography, Frozen Charlotte dolls, and antique poison bottles. Natalie contributes her uncharacteristic love of hockey to being born in Russia.

She currently resides in the UK where she is working on her next book and adding to her collection of 19th century post-mortem photos.

Q & A With The Author:

What is the hardest thing you’ve ever done?

Had to cut toxic people out of my life. People I once cared deeply for.

Please, tell me a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

A few months ago, I was walking through a church cemetery. The majority of the graves are from the eighteenth century. A lot of the epitaphs are no longer readable due to age and the weather. On the side of the church and against the wall, I found a beautiful gravestone for a woman named Hannah. There is an almost perfectly readable epitaph that describes her as twenty-seven years old, and leaving behind her beloved husband and new baby. As lovely as it is, there is something so sad about it as well. She’s all alone. There are no relatives buried near her. It was like she was loved, and then her family moved on, and she is now forgotten. I visit her grave every time I’m in the area and leave her a crystal gemstone that I bury near the gravetone.

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After an unfortunate incident, Dr. Timothy Martin’s career as a surgeon is in tatters. Unable to cope with the changes in his life, his mother insists he visit Meggie Marie, a woman she says can perform miracles with her alternative therapy.

Timothy is reluctant, but maybe Meggie is his last chance to heal.

When he sees Meggie, he is intrigued by the eccentric woman with vibrant red hair, who wears tie-dye and flower headbands. When he gets to know her, she becomes something else to him – hope, joy, and maybe even love.

But is Meggie for real, or is she simply providing him with her special brand of therapy?

With Christmas just around the corner, has Timothy found his Christmas miracle, or is Meggie’s motive something darker waiting to be discovered?



 Top Ten List:
  1. I was born in Russia
  2. My winters are consumed with hockey
  3. My summers are consumed with Major League Baseball
  4. I’ve lived in four countries
  5. I have a degree in Mortuary Science
  6. I grew my hair for nearly seven years, had over twenty-four inches of hair cut off and donated
  7. I collect antique Frozen Charlotte dolls
  8. I have an extensive collection of Victorian-era photographs
  9. I’ve recently started to collect antique cameos
  10. My favorite book is Jacqueline Susann’s Valley of the Dolls.
To view our blog schedule and follow along with this tour visit our Official Event page