Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Interview With Rachel Jones and a Giveaway

Southern Magic is proud to introduce Rachel Jones!  

She will be at our luncheon in Hoover, Alabama November 5 with Jennifer Ashley, Hildie McQueen, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Lynn Raye Harris, Dianna Love and 20 plus authors.

Who are your top five authors to read?

Marie Force, Kristan Higgins, Laura Landon, Sarah MacLean, RaeAnne Thayne

What is your go-to book to read over and over again?
Ashes In The Wind by Kathleen E. Woodiwiss

Describe where you are the most productive when you write.

I’m most productive in my newly renovated office surrounded by everything I need (music, tea, diffused aromas, resources). It’s a pleasant place to spend many hours.

Tells us a little about your current book?

Concert pianist Ella Craig returns home under the guise of performing with the San Francisco Philharmonic Orchestra. All she wants is to seek medical treatment for the symptoms she’s been experiencing then get back to the business of touring around the world.

General surgeon Jackson Hart, hired twenty-one months ago to replace Ella’s father, is a colleague of her Uncle Bill. Even with a fresh start and encouragement from Ella’s uncle and aunt, it has taken the widower over a year to open his life to social interaction once again. His career is taking off, and the idea of remaining permanently in San Francisco has merit.

As her friendship with Jackson deepens and she reconnects with family, Ella’s desire to stay becomes powerful, but the unresolved grief over her parents’ deaths is an obstacle to remaining in the city where she grew up. Ella struggles with her growing feelings for Jackson because no matter how strong they become, she’s not convinced she can give the time and effort required to sustain a romantic relationship with him. When Patrick walked away from her three years ago for that very reason, she vowed never to act on feelings of love again, no matter how intense.

Spending time with Ella awakens sensations and emotions Jackson thought had died with his wife. He’ll do anything to convince Ella to stay, but sadly realizes he’s not up to the promise of support he offers as she faces her grief. Accompanying Ella to the cemetery opens a floodgate of repressed memories of the days following Beth’s death. They crash down upon him with such force he now realizes he has not adequately dealt with his grief, only buried it and now it returns to haunt him again.

Show us your one favorite scene of dialogue from that book.

Ella’s heart pounded. His clean scent surrounded her, the heat from his body undeniable. She turned her head in his direction, welcoming the closeness of their faces. Jackson stroked the side her face, coaxing her toward his lips.

As they connected her eyes slid shut as she became lost in his kiss, melting into his masculine form. This man could kiss. She pulled away, breathless and found his face in the star-lit night.

“How did things get so messed up between us?” she asked.

Jackson’s hand fell from her shoulders. “I screwed it up when I told you about Beth.”

“Let’s be honest here. I put you on the spot. If I’d never asked for your help…”

“I had a hard time when Beth died. For a while I couldn’t function. I don’t know if I would ever have recovered if it weren’t for my grandparents. They gave me time to grieve and then they began to pull me back from the dark place I had gone to. They were smart enough to know when to stop
sympathizing and start pushing so I could have a life again.”

“I’m glad they were able to help you.”

“I would like to have helped you when you asked me. But I was scared if I let myself remember and feel, I might retreat back to those days of darkness and I didn’t want to go there.”

“After you left I didn’t know how to approach you, so I waited. I’m sorry I asked you for something you couldn’t give.”

Jackson hung his head. She put her hand on his arm. “It’s okay. I’ve been to the cemetery.”
He looked at her. “How was it?”

“So different from what I expected. I felt peaceful when I left. I might even go back sometime, maybe.”

“I’m sorry you had to go alone.”

“I wasn’t alone. Alex went with me. He’s a good friend.”

Jackson picked up a small seashell and threw it. “I see.”

He’s jealous. “Alex is a great guy, but you shouldn’t be resentful of him.”

The jealousy factor gave her a boldness she never would have claimed as part of her personality. “I’d never do this with Alex.” She placed her hands on his face and pulled him close. She touched his lips with hers and knew the invisible barrier between them disintegrated when he shifted and grasped her shoulders.

The kiss turned from soft and sweet to fully charged making her feel heat at her core, something she’d never experienced with Patrick. The foreign feelings had her shuddering for more and pulling away at the same time.

What do you believe makes a man sexy?
Where to begin? Rolled up sleeves, five o’clock shadow, genuine smile, eye contact; happy to do the little things to make my day better (cook dinner, foot rub); owns a dog, is nice to the older generation.

Here's her short bio.

A registered nurse by night (for the past twenty-five years) and a writer by day sums up Rachel’s present life. She loves composing stories about strong women and sweet romance. Her books reflect her love of the performing arts, and her career in healthcare has influenced the threads of medical drama woven into her storylines. Taking A Chance On Love, Rachel’s second novel is a Rone Award finalist this year. Fingers crossed – winner announcement in October.

When she’s not working or writing, Rachel loves traveling, sewing and making music. After retirement (three years away) she plans to join a local orchestra and resume her clarinet playing on a semi-professional basis. Rachel lives in Kennesaw, Georgia with a spoiled Labrador retriever and her husband of thirty-eight years. They have three grown children.

Look for Rachel at the following places.

Today's giveaway is a $10 gift card to Amazon. 

Question: What musical instrument can you play? 
If you don't, but if you could, what would you play? 

Leave an answer to be entered to win.  The winner will be announced this Saturday in the comment section.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Interview With Dianna Love and Giveaway

Southern Magic is proud to introduce our special guest, Dianna Love!  

She will be at our luncheon in Hoover, Alabama November 5 with Jennifer Ashley, Hildie McQueen, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Lynn Raye Harris and 20 plus authors.

What are the last few books you read?
Elizabeth Hunter’s IRIN CHRNONICLES (4 books/paranormal mystery), Hildie McQueen’s MONTANA BACHELOR (western romance), Eric Asher’s Steamborn (young adult), Russell Blake’s JET (black ops thrillers) series, Adrienne Giordano’s DEADLY ODDS (RS) and Tracey Devlyn’s LATYMER (historical romance).

What was your go-to book in childhood—the one you read over and over again?
The one book that stays in the back of my mind over the years and inspired me to write about places I've never been to like sci fi and fantasy worlds was RITE OF PASSAGE written by Alexei Panshin (original book was released in 1968, but it's been reprinted like a zillion times). I was a big Isaac Asimov fan as well.

Who influenced your writing the most? Why?
Suzanne Brockmann and Catherine Mann influenced my early romantic suspense writing the most.  As for urban fantasy - I read so much urban fantasy, young adult and sci fi that it’s hard to say which ones, but I’ve studied the style of pretty much all the major ones.

Describe where you are the most productive when you write
.In my cave. I’ve taught my body that when I sit down in my cave at home it is time to write. I can write anywhere and have produced pages in some really odd situations, but when I’m in my little writing space I tend to write for 10+ hours a day.  

Tells us a little about your current book?
I’m working on the next Belador urban fantasy titled DRAGON KING OF TREOIR, which will be out in January 2017.  It’s so hard to tell you anything about that book without giving spoilers, but the Beladors are in turmoil after a major change in leadership.  An ancient enemy rises up to push things past the boiling point and Quinn faces death if he fails to deliver the body of the woman he loved to his enemy who will use necromancy on it.  Let’s just say that Quinn is in for a few surprises and the Dragon King will be put to the test as their new leader.   Evalle, Storm and all the rest will be back as the Belador world continues to grow and expand. ROGUE BELADOR, which came out in April, had major surprises for readers too.

Show us your one favorite scene of dialogue from that book.
This is from ROGUE BELADOR, the April book.  Tzader and his rogue team are inserting into Taur Medb and planning to steal the queen’s throne-  a dragon cursed into that shape

TÅμr Medb, home of the Medb coven 

Tzader took in his team to make sure all five of them had survived the teleportation into Tŵr Medb. No welcoming committee had waited for them in this bedroom suite, thank the gods, but the distinctive smell of burned limes clung to the air in Medb Central.

Evalle asked, “How’re you doing, Tristan?”

Running his hands over his head, Tristan said, “That was hairy, but we’re here. Let’s get this done and get out.”

Tzader had hoped to hear cockiness instead of uncertainty in Tristan’s voice, but they were here now and there was nothing to do but move forward with the plan.

Adrianna stepped over to Tristan. “Can you jump to the throne room, or do you need a moment to recharge?”

“I’m good. Do your little cloaking trick.”

“Little cloaking trick?” Adrianna gave it a beat then said, “I’m not entirely sure how Witchlock will function here. Maybe I should test it on you and seal your mouth shut. It would be so much nicer if all you could do was nod yes or shake your head no.”

“Who peed in your crispy doodles this morning?”

Evalle stepped over. “Tristan, would you just do your part without acting like a jerk?”

He lifted his hands in surrender. “Fine. Wouldn’t want to upset your witch buddy.”

Evalle shook her head and gave him a wry smile. “I’m trying to preserve your family jewels. I have no doubt she can remove them with a flick of her hand, but reattaching them ... now that might actually be some trick.”

Color washed out of his face. “Not funny.”

Tzader said, “We’re not here for fun. Get moving if you want to stay alive. The sooner we’re out of here, the better chance of that happening.”

Tristan said nothing after that unless someone asked him a direct question. Once Adrianna had them cloaked, Tristan teleported them away. 

Storm had been checking out the room. “How did you keep Lanna hidden once you figured out she’d traveled here with you?”

Evalle said, “She could cloak herself, but she also kept practicing teleporting.”

“How far could she go?”

“From the bathroom on the other side of that door.” Evalle pointed. “To this room, and she kept hitting her head on the wall when she missed.”

“No wonder she gives Quinn fits,” Tzader commented.

Tristan appeared right in front of Storm. They both jumped back. Tristan said, “Stay out of my landing spots.” 

Storm countered, “Put an X on the floor next time.”

The next time Tzader needed a black-ops team, he was leaving at least one of these two behind. Right now, he needed both. He asked Tristan, “Is Adrianna working on the dragon, or do we need to take out some guards?”

“She’s on it, and the hall outside the queen’s quarters is empty. They must know when the queen is on-site or gone. Bunch up and I’ll take you there.”

The jump to the throne room was quick enough that Tzader didn’t feel his stomach do backflips. So this was the heart of Tŵr Medb, huh? Adrianna stood in front of a throne that was, by the gods, shaped from a dragon. She said, “I can’t break a curse unless you can tell me what it was.”
The dragon grumbled and the throne shuddered. Smoke curled from his nostrils.

Evalle walked over to stand next to the dragon, who stopped making noises. His big silver eyes looked Evalle up and down, then shifted over to take in the men before returning to Adrianna. He tried to make noises but his mouth was not opening for him to talk, growl, or whatever he could do. 
Storm joined Adrianna and Evalle, saying, “Can you free his jaws or tongue to somehow release his voice?” 

Adrianna thought on it several seconds. She addressed the dragon. “I can try something, but it might require breaking your jaw. I won’t do it unless you give me permission. Puff out one time for no and two for yes.”

Silver eyes thinned at that suggestion, but he puffed out twice. 

“I was afraid you’d say that,” Adrianna muttered.

What do you believe makes a man sexy?
I find confidence in a man sexy. There’s a big difference between confidence and arrogance. I have no doubt that if the world erupted in an apocalyptic war tomorrow, that my husband would know what to do and as a team we’d be able to protect ourselves and live off the land.  I was never attracted to those men who can’t screw in a light bulb much less fix something on their own.  The heroes in my stories aren’t perfect, not by a long shot, but they are confident in their abilities and will not hesitate to wade into a battle even if they’re outnumbered. A sexy man, IMO, is someone with his own code of honor who can back up whatever he says, or die trying.

Dianna Love Fan Page:  

Dianna Love STREET TEAM: 

Author website: 

Twitter: @DiannaLove

Amazon Author Central Page: 

New York Times bestseller Dianna Love once dangled over a hundred feet in the air to create unusual marketing projects for Fortune 500 companies. Now she focuses her energetic muse on storytelling.  The first book she wrote won a RITA® Award and sold out in six weeks.  She writes high-octane romantic thrillers and urban fantasy, with FATAL PROMISE, book 6 in the sexy, fast-paced Slye Temp romantic suspense series released June 28th, and DRAGON KING OF TREOIR, book 8 in the bestselling Belador urban fantasy series scheduled for January, 2017.  
When not in the writing cave, Dianna loves touring the country on her BMW motorcycle.  She lives in the Atlanta, GA area with her motorcycle-instructor husband and a tank full of unruly saltwater critters.  

Connect with Dianna on Facebook at Dianna Love Fan Page or sign up for the crazy fun on her Dianna Love Street Team.  Follow her Amazon Author Page for new release updates and other news about her books.  Excerpts of all her books are at

Today's giveaway is a print (if US or Canada) copy of Rogue Belador and a swag pack. If it's an international winner - ebook copy of Rogue Belador and swag pack. (For e-book gift, winner must have an Amazon, Barnes & Noble or iBooks account.)

Question: What book from your childhood do you still remember?

Leave an answer to be entered to win.  The winner will be announced this Saturday in the comment section.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Interview With Brina Cary and Giveaway

Southern Magic is proud to introduce Brina Cary!  

She will be at our luncheon in Hoover, Alabama November 5 with Jennifer Ashley, Hildie McQueen, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Lynn Raye Harris, Dianna Love and 20 plus authors.

Who are your top five authors to read?
That's a hard decision... I guess Lee Childs, Agatha Christie, Nora Roberts, Lynn Kurland, and BJ Daniels are my top five.

What is your go-to book to read over and over again?

The Westing Game is my most favorite book because it's such a well-done mystery. Everything is tightly wound together throughout it and it ends with happiness. Mr. Westing's goal wasn't to terrorize anyone. In fact, he brought them all together and made them learn something. To me, the book is extremely teachable. To me, it's about finding your own happiness despite what else you've been through in life.

Who influenced your writing the most? Why?
Stephen King, Edgar Allen Poe, and my nephews. As a Veteran I've seen and experienced a lot of things. When I have a bad day I will actually sit down and go "ok, let's pull a terrifying escape." I'm not brave enough to show anyone my really dark stories, but they exist. A friend read one of my darkish stories once and demanded to know who upset me, so she could warn them. My nephews keep my stories light. They help me to remember that there's happy endings. So while there's a sad or angry part in my stories, there's always going to be a happy ending. After all, you can't tell a kid a story about pirates without making the pirates based off of the kid, and have them find the treasure. It just doesn't work that way. :)

Describe where you are the most productive when you write.

Honestly, I'm the most productive at a write-in, surrounded by other writers. Everywhere else and my ADD kicks in full gear. I get more non story things done in that time than I normally do.

Tells us a little about your current book?
My current book is an Alternative Universe (AU) Romance. Basically, if you take one thing and change it (in my case it would be that the Scottish vote for freedom in 2015 succeeded) then you've created an AU.

The vote had me on the edge of my seat because I love early English history (1776 and before), which means I adore both England and Scotland. One of the most wonderful concepts I learned in college was the principle of "He might be a bad king, but he's our king." That's how some Scottish rulers were seen. That concept is what sparked the idea as to what Scotland "could" have done if the vote had succeeded last year. In All Her Men Amelia MacRory becomes Queen because of this.

Amelia is the last direct descendant of Mary Queen of Scots, whom some consider the last true Scottish ruler. Unfortunately, Amelia is a wee bit unprepared to deal with everything that comes from the Referendum. There's an assassin or two, a jerk that is just plain evil, and a few other surprises. There's a bombing that will just tear your heart out too... Amelia is extremely lucky because her father set up a group of orphan mercenaries to be her guards, her men. One has loved Amelia, from afar, since they were both children.

Show us your one favorite scene of dialogue from that book.

“Through the tunnels?” Was he serious? “Tunnels, as in underground, with rats?” His lilting laughter greeted her in response. There was no recrimination for her. His face simply reflected mirth, as if he wasn’t sure what to make of her, but found humor in her words. “No, I’m not afraid of rats.”

“Of course.” He still grinned at her.

“Whatever.” She turned away from him. Her face hot from embarrassment and shame. “A flea on a rat caused the Black Death. I just don’t like being around them.”

“Ye think we would let ye succumb to the Plague?”

“The little slimy man might.” At his questioning look she clarified, “your nasty little SNP Leader.”

His body tensed and he began looking her over from head to toe. She began looking at herself too. Amelia had been extremely careful not to drop her breakfast on her, but maybe she had missed something. Upon not finding anything she looked back at him. His words sounded gravely and dangerous to her ears as he asked, “Did he hurt ye?”

What do you believe makes a man sexy?
For me, a guy is sexy if he has an intelligent mind and a dazzling personality. A man or woman can have all the looks, money, etc in the world and be duller than a box of rocks. It's when they can make me laugh and understand my crazy geeky or nerdy references, that I adore them forever.

Here's her short bio.
Brina Cary is a world weary traveler who has been to such faraway places as Guam, Singapore, Hong Kong, Jebel Ali, Bahrain, etc. through a tour in the US Navy. While growing up surrounded by poverty Brina began to dream of the different avenues her life could take. She joined the Navy out of high school to find out what she wanted in life and have a bit of an adventure. Since then that adventure has taken her down the road to martial arts, private investigations, forensic anthropology, financial analysis, arson investigation, Egyptian curses, myths and legends, etc. Brina uses all this experience in her writing to create adventures for her readers!

Brina Cary is a member of RWA and the following RWA Chapters: Southern Magic, Celtic Hearts, Kiss of Death, and FF&P. She is also a member of Sisters in Crime and their Guppies Chapter.

Look for Brina at the following places.

Today's giveaway is a Zombie Apocalypse Partners necklace from Wishing Willow Metal Arts.

Question: What is the creepiest creature you try to avoid?

Leave an answer to be entered to win.  The winner will be announced this Monday in the comment section.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Interview With Suzanne Johnson and Giveaway

Southern Magic is proud to introduce Suzanne Johnson (writing as Susannah Sandlin)!  

She will be at our luncheon in Hoover, Alabama November 5 with Jennifer Ashley, Hildie McQueen, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Lynn Raye Harris, Dianna Love and 20 plus authors.

Who are your top five authors to read?
The authors on my auto-buy list are Jim Butcher, Patricia Briggs, Alex Bledsoe, Rick Bragg, Kim Harrison. But I read all genres and also read a lot of nonfiction. A whole lot of nonfiction.

What is your go-to book to read over and over again?
Stephen King’s The Stand. I couldn’t even tell you how many times I’ve read that book, beginning way back when it was first released. The older I get, the more I appreciate the universal themes of good versus evil, and the nuances of the characters. It’s still probably my favorite book of all time, but Sai King (in-joke for anyone who’s read The Dark Tower series) still can’t write romance worth a crap.

Who influenced your writing the most? Why?

I cut my teeth on Stephen King, obviously, so I guess if I had to point to an early influence it would be him, as well as the poetry of Kenneth Patchen and WB Yeats. Romance readers tend to write King off as a horror writer, but he writes really intriguing characters and rich stories. (Well, and horror.) But the authors who actually got me started writing fiction were Simon R. Green and Jim Butcher, and their Nightside and Dresden series, respectively. I binge-read both series beginning-to-current back in 2008 and said, “I want to write that genre.” I found them intellectually exciting and they began churning up all kinds of ideas and possibilities that I wanted to explore. The Nightside series almost made my brain explode (that’s a good thing!).

Describe where you are the most productive when you write.
It’s not so much a place, although I do the majority of my writing in my home office, but a state of mind in which I’m most productive: under deadline. Maybe it’s because the bulk of my career has been in journalism but I thrive under deadlines; even a tight deadline doesn’t freak me out—it just makes me work harder. If I don’t have a firm deadline, I find it difficult to motivate myself and I’ll end up doing something like what I did the entire, deadline-free month of July: binge-watching “The Deadliest Catch.” All twelve seasons, twenty episodes a season. LOL. So I need a hard, tight deadline or I will dawdle around imagining life as a Bering Sea crab fisherman. Despite the fact that I get motion sickness and can’t swim.

Tells us a little about your current book?
I’m currently dawdling over the fifth book of my Penton Legacy paranormal romance series, written as Susannah Sandlin, which might or might not involve Bering Sea crab fishermen. My next release, on October 18 (which I’ll have at the Southern Magic Readers Luncheon!) is BLACK DIAMOND, also as Susannah Sandlin. It’s the second in my Wilds of the Bayou romantic suspense series set deep in the heart of Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana. The series follows a team of wildlife enforcement agents (the law-enforcement type of game warden) as they find danger and love in the wilds of the bayou. In BLACK DIAMOND, agent Jena Sinclair gets caught up investigating a series of aggressive alligator attacks that happen at the same time a dangerous designer drug called Black Diamond is flooding the parish. There’s also a sexy reclusive man living back in the bayou, way off the grid, who’s definitely involved…but how? Book five of my Sentinels of New Orleans series, BELLE CHASSE, written as Suzanne Johnson, comes out on November 8. Nice of my publishers to set release dates three weeks apart. Not!

Show us your one favorite scene of dialogue from that book.

From BLACK DIAMOND…Both the hero and heroine are very damaged people, especially the hero, and their conversations tend to be intense. I couldn’t find one that didn’t have spoilers, so I chose this conversation between Jena and her partner, Mac. She’s planning to meet with the hero, Cole Ryan, who is living way off-grid and no one knows anything about him. He claims he has information about a drug called Black Diamond but will only talk to her. Mac is not a happy camper. I like this scene because it shows the growing friendship/partnership between Jena and Mac, who’ll be the hero of a future book in the series.

Mac waited until they were back in the truck and on their way to Gateau’s in Houma to ask her the obvious. “Why are you meeting with that Ryan guy today, and who’s your backup?”

“He left a note for me last night while I was at dinner. It was lying on the mat outside my front door.” Jena watched the passing scenery and didn’t look at Mac, which told him she was measuring her words and didn’t want her face to give anything away. “He says he has information on the Black Diamond case but he won’t talk to anyone but me. He wants to talk to me alone.”

Mac let that process for a minute. Maybe half a minute. Maybe ten seconds. “He left a note at your freaking house? How would he know where you live, Sinclair? That’s just one of a dozen reasons not to meet with him, much less alone.”

Jena gave him a brief glance. “Yeah, it bothers me too. I have an unlisted landline number. He called my cell from a pay phone, but didn’t leave a message. Instead, he drove to my house and left a note.”

“So I repeat, who’s your backup?”

“Mac, if he sees another officer there, he won’t talk. I can guarantee you that from my one conversation with him.”

He took a deep breath. She was his senior officer, but this had to be said. “Jena, there’s an easy solution to this. We call the sheriff’s office and tell them this Ryan guy could be a person of interest. Then you’re out of it. He’d never even have to know you had anything to do with it.”

She twisted in her seat to look at him, her hazel eyes serious. “No. I mean it, Mac. No. There’s something about this guy that’s on the level; I can just feel it. He’s . . . I don’t know . . . fragile.”

“Fragile? Fragile? He’s built like a solid f***ing tank, pardon my Français. He’s as fragile as a bull gator in a small bayou.”

“I don’t mean physically fragile. Obviously.” She smiled. “I mean emotionally fragile. We connected in some way the day I talked to him, and I don’t want to scare him off.”

“You are not talking to this guy alone, even if I have to park a half mile away and hide in the bushes.”
At that, she grinned. “Only if I get photos.”

He pointed at the laptop computer lying atop a pile of paperwork on the center armrest of the truck. “In the meantime, have you run a search on him? Even a simple Internet search? See if he shows up?”

“No, things have been too crazy with Jackson and . . .”

Jena pulled the computer into her lap and began to type and scroll. “Oh my God.” Her eyes widened more with each click of the keypad.

Mac almost lost control of the truck trying to crane his neck to see the screen. “Did you find him?”

She closed down the page she’d been reading and twisted the laptop back to its usual resting place. “Oh yeah, I found him, all right.”

What do you believe makes a man sexy?
A good sense of humor. Without that, it doesn’t matter how sexy they are physically. Humor makes up for most things with me, as long as it’s not humor at someone else’s expense.

Here's her short bio.
Chapter One: I am born. Oh, wait, I’m not Dickens, am I? The “boring official bio” is below [on my website]. In the unofficial bio, I am ridiculously nearsighted, have a weakness for reality shows (anyone for a marathon of “Cutthroat Kitchen?”) and am somewhat obsessive-compulsive. Well, okay, my critique partner calls me “Rain Man.” Whether writing as Suzanne Johnson or Susannah Sandlin, you can count on quirky characters and a lot of action.

Look for Suzanne at the following places.
Twitter     Facebook      Pinterest   Website

Today's giveaway is a $15 gift card to Amazon. 

Question: What is the last TV series (or Movie series) that you binge watched? 

Leave an answer to be entered to win.  The winner will be announced this Saturday in the comment section.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Interview With Aidee Ladnier and Giveaway

Southern Magic is proud to introduce Aidee Ladnier!  

She will be at our luncheon in Hoover, Alabama November 5 with Jennifer Ashley, Hildie McQueen, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Lynn Raye Harris, Dianna Love and 20 plus authors.

I’m so excited to be hosting a table at the Southern Magic Readers Luncheon this year! When I was approached to answer a few interview questions, I couldn’t wait to reply to mine and hopefully find some readers who share my interests.

So, on to the questions:

Who are your top five authors to read? 
This is a really hard question to answer. The easiest answer is whoever I’m reading at the time. LOL!  Seriously, the authors I go back to again and again are:

Jane Davitt and Alexa Snow. These two writers collaborate on one of my favorite series, LAYING A GHOST. I love a good ghost story and their books are full of ghosts and romance. I love the thrill of the chase in a new romance, but this series follows just one couple as they ride out the highs and lows of a relationship—all while helping ghosts with their own set of problems move on to a better place. The relationship is real in their books.

 Jordan Castillo Price. I love her books! She’s so talented and writes paranormal police procedurals, my favorite of which is the PSYCOP series. Her characters are so flawed but still manage to have relationships, deal with ghosts, and solve murders. 

Amy Lane. With lush descriptions of landscapes, men, and knitting, Amy is my go to “feel good” read. My favorite series by her are the GRANBY KNITTING books. Big burly men with clicking knitting needles pushes all my buttons. LOL!

Lois McMaster Bujold. In addition to romance, I read a fair number of other genres. Lois has been a favorite of mine since high school. With sweeping space opera, political intrigue, a dash of mystery, and heartbreaking romance, she made science fiction the genre I gravitate to whenever I’m in the mood for adventure. Her VORKOSIGAN SAGA is a must read for any lover of science fiction and romance.

What is your go-to book to read over and over again? 
Do not laugh! Ever since I was a teenager, I pull out Jennifer Blake’s SOUTHERN RAPTURE when I want to have my historical itch scratched. I own a hardback, a paperback, and now even an ebook of it. It combines all my favorite things—a masked crusader for justice, a woman in love with two men who are secretly the same man, a deep enthralling view of the South and Southern history, a
heroine that knows her own mind and has opinions. It’s the perfect beach read, frothy and delicious.

Describe where you are the most productive when you write. 
I write best at my little gray desk. It has all my reference books close at hand. It has an ergonomic chair to help my back and also a ball if I want to bounce while I write. There’s origami paper to fold and a handy poster of the hero’s journey in case I get stuck on a plot.

Tell us a little about your current book? 
My current book is THE MOONLIGHT MARKET published in August by Loose Id. This story has a contemporary setting but contains elements of magical realism, dark fantasy and a little horror. In it, college senior Cory Long tracks his missing sister to the magical Moonlight Market to bring her home. But instead, he finds a disorienting world of performers and hawkers, bizarre sights and sounds, and one very familiar showman, Sanderson Beets. Like a drowning man, he latches onto Sanderson, trusting him to navigate the twists and turns of the Market as unerringly as he steered Cory to passion in their furtive trysts on campus. But Sanderson is tired of being the quickie in the alley. Sanderson Beets escaped the Moonlight Market to attend college, hoping to settle into a normal life, maybe meet someone and fall in love. To obtain that new life he made a dangerous bargain. And when the sinister woman known as the Weaver of Dreams is involved, second chances always come with strings attached…and sacrifices. Sanderson’s debt has comes due, and the only payment he has to offer is Cory, and their chance at a relationship.

Show us one of your favorite scenes from that book. 
 Sanderson halted in front of a plain white tent. A thin, gray-bearded man in a light-colored suit with a wand tucked under his arm was instructing a small boy on how to use a Jacob’s ladder. The ladder
clapped and clattered as its ribbon hinges let the wooden blocks cascade down its length.

“And wooden toys to tease your toddler.”

The old man handed the noisemaker to the boy and bowed to the effusive thanks of the parents. He spun around to greet Sanderson with a twinkle in his bright eyes.

“Sanderson Beets, my goodness, boy, you’ve grown a foot since last I saw you.”

“I have, Mr. Tuckfield.” Sanderson bowed bending low at his waist. “I haven’t seen you at the Market for at least five years.”

“Oh, I’ve been to the Far East, my boy. I have seen wonders—a man who can create fire from his fingertips and water from his eyes.” The old toymaker stroked his pointed beard, taking the wand from under his arm and placing it on the table beside him. “He was crying from the smoke, you see.”
The gentleman chuckled at his own joke. “Come, come.” He waved them closer. “Come see a treasure I found on my journey.”

The toymaker pulled aside the clean white curtain to reveal the cluttered interior of the tent piled high with crates and boxes and colorful painted shapes. In one corner, on a table holding an army of tin soldiers was a round lazy Susan with a squat metal cylinder atop it. Inside the cylinder, a smaller column covered in mirrors sat with a thin candle rising above it.

“It’s a praxinoscope.” Sanderson breathed the words against Cory’s ear, sending the secret shivering down his skin.

“Quite so, my boy. I bought it from a man who said he charmed the glow out of a lightning bug but had to return it during the next thunderstorm. Couldn’t keep it dry enough to light a candle.”
Mr. Tuckfield picked up the strange contraption and placed it on the table outside the tent flap. Then the toymaker set his index finger next to his mouth and blew on it.

Cory’s eyes widened as a flame sparked from the old man’s bony fingertip. The toymaker grinned, his face eerily illuminated by the small fire’s glimmer. It danced over his features like bright paint. He touched his finger to the candle above the mirrors. The wick caught with a sputter, intensifying to a warm yellow glow. The toymaker gave his finger a quick shake, and the flame disappeared. Cory wondered if he had seen the fire at all.

Over the candle, the old man positioned a paper shade and then, with a quick flick of his fingers, set the lazy Susan in motion. The flame cast its light into the well between the cylinders. Reflected on the mirrors, the drawings within the outer ring moved. Faster the table turned, and as it rotated, a reflected image of a small bird flew from the ground, flapping its wings. With each beat the bird morphed into a dragon before disappearing and reappearing again as a bird to begin its change anew.

 “Do you know the difference between a transformation and a metamorphosis, my boy?” The toymaker pinned Cory with his glittering eyes.

Cory stepped back from the whirling toy, and the old man halted its rotation. The candle went out as if snuffed.

“They’re the same thing, aren’t they?”

Cory glanced at Sanderson for confirmation, but he was watching the toymaker. The old man stroked his coarse gray beard again and then picked up the praxinoscope.

“A metamorphosis is the complete remaking of a being—think of the caterpillar. It in no way resembles the butterfly and therefore, must remake itself, cracking open skin and exposing brain to somehow become less and more than it once was.”

Mr. Tuckfield opened the tent flap with a flick and placed the device on the soldier-covered table. He clapped the dust off his hands and turned back to regard Cory and Sanderson.

“A transformation, that’s different. Transformation is the same animal with a few variables changed. A turn here, a flip there, a slide, and a little bird spouts fire and is a dragon.” The toymaker tilted his head to the side as he regarded Cory. “Mind you don’t miss your chance at transformation, my boy.”

What do you believe makes a man sexy?
 Like all romance writers, I think the perfect man is one that’s willing to change and grow. In a fantasy, I like a guy with abs that go on forever, strong arms to hold me, and maybe a tentacle or two to tease me. But in reality, the sexiest man is the one that supports me when I’m at my lowest. He’s the one that thinks I’m beautiful even when I disagree. He’s the one that makes me laugh and takes me to dinner when I’m willing to cook. Sexy is the guy who’s wants to stick around for the long haul, through thick and thin, the one that agrees to accompany me on my wacky adventures and when we fall to the ground, breathless and laughing, the one that kisses me and says he’s never wanted to be anywhere else.

Author Bio:
Aidee Ladnier, an award-winning author of speculative fiction, began writing at twelve years old but took a hiatus to be a magician’s assistant, ride in hot air balloons, produce independent movies, collect interesting shoes, and amass a secret file with the CIA. A lover of genre fiction, it has been a lifelong dream of Aidee's to write both romance and erotica with a little science fiction, fantasy, mystery, or the paranormal thrown in to add a zing.

Look for Aidee at the following places.
Twitter     Facebook     Goodreads    Website

Today's giveaway is a $10 Amazon gift card!

Question: What are YOUR five favorite books to re-read?

Leave an answer to be entered to win.  The winner will be announced this Saturday in the comment section.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Interview With Susan Carlisle and Giveaway

Southern Magic is proud to introduce Susan Carlisle!  

She will be at our luncheon in Hoover, Alabama November 5 with Jennifer Ashley, Hildie McQueen, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Lynn Raye Harris, Dianna Love and 20 plus authors.

Who are your top five authors to read?
Linda Howard, Carol Burnside, Caro Carson, Fiona Lowe, Louisa George

What is your go-to book to read over and over again?
Shanna by Kathleen Woodiwiss

Who influenced your writing the most? Why?
Claudia White. She encourage me, helped me navigate through the publishing process and critiqued my work over and over. Without I wouldn’t be a published author.

Describe where you are the most productive when you write.
At my mother’s lake house on Lake Weiss. There is nothing like propping my feet up on the deck rail and looking out over the water to be inspired.

Tells us a little about your current book?
It is about a busy doctor who hires a matchmaker to find him a wife. To his surprise and hers they turn out to be the perfect match.

Show us your one favorite scene of dialogue from that book.

His tires squealed as he quickly pulled into a parking lot next to the building. The group turned toward him. At least their attention was drawn away from Alderman Marsh. Kiefer hopped out and circled the truck, putting himself between her and the gang.

“Hey, man, who’re you?” growled the man Kiefer had pegged as the leader of the group. His dark hair was long and pulled back in a band. He wore a hoop in his ear.

“Dr. Kiefer Bradford. I’m the new clinic doctor.”

“We don’t need no more outsiders here.”

Ashley sidestepped Kiefer. He put his arm out to stop her without taking his eyes off the men in front of him. He felt more than saw her move around him and he dropped his arm in frustration.

“I can handle this,” she announced in a firm tone, confronting the guy in front of Kiefer. “Look, Marko, the clinic is to help the people around here, not to spy on you. What if your mother or sister needed medical care? Don’t you want them to have a place to get it? This will be a no-questions-asked place.”

It would be? That was the first Kiefer had heard of that.

“We don’t need…” Marko lifted his chin toward Kiefer “…no outsiders coming into our neighborhood.”

“This is my home as much as it is yours,” Ashley stated. “I’ve known your family all your life. I used to change your diapers.”

A couple of Marko’s buddies snickered. He glanced at them. Their faces sobered. “All your do-gooding isn’t going to work,” Marko said to Ashley.

“I’m trying to make the community better. The clinic is the first step in doing that.”

“Yeah, right, it’s your way of trying to change everything.” He spat on the ground then scowled. “I run this ’hood and if I don’t want you or your clinic, you’ll be gone.”

Kiefer took a step forward. “Don’t threaten the lady.”

Marko glowered at him. “Back off, mister, or you’ll regret it.”

A couple of Marko’s thugs moved toward him.

Ashley pulled at Kiefer’s arm, preventing him from going towards Marko. “He isn’t worth it.”

The horn of a police car had Marko’s gang scrambling, each running in a different direction and disappearing into the dwindling light.

“Is there a problem here?” the patrolman asked out the car window.

Ashley left Kiefer’s side and went to the car. “No, we’re fine, Carl.”

Carl looked at Kiefer and raised his chin. “Who’s this guy?”

“This is Dr. Bradford, the new director of the clinic.”

Kiefer nodded.

“Good to have you, Doc,” Carl said. “Never a dull moment in Southriver.”

“I’m finding that out.”

“Carl, don’t run him off before he even gets started,” Ashley said with a half-laugh.

“Sorry Alderman, that wasn’t my intention. Ya’ll have a good evening.” Carl’s partner drove the car on down the street.

After all the excitement Kiefer took a really good look at the woman beside him. Beneath the streetlight she wasn’t at all like the person on TV, more like a college co-ed and less like a hard-nosed politician. Of average height, with midnight-black hair she wore pulled back in a ponytail. Her jeans had holes in them; not as a fashion statement but from actual use would be his guess.

His attention went to her tight T-shirt, which did nothing to hide the generous breasts but, in fact, drew attention to them with ‘not here you don’t’ written across them. What captured his attention was the necklace lying between her breasts. It was the same one that the woman he’d kissed on St. Patrick’s Day had been wearing.

He looked into her dark eyes. Yes, those were the ones. He’d thought of that kiss and these very eyes many times since then.


Ashley gave him a quizzical look. “Yes. Me.”

She didn’t recognize him. But why should she? He’d worn a mask.


Ashley put her hands on her hips and glared at the man before her. “What were you thinking?”

He blinked a couple of time as if he’d forgotten where he was. “What do you mean?”

Dr. Bradford looked truly perplexed. As if he couldn’t imagine creating a situation that both she and he couldn’t get out of. Marko wasn’t someone to mess with. “Jumping in between Marko and me. I had things under control.”

“Yeah, I could see that. Six against one is always a fair number. I was only trying to help.”

What was it about his voice? Had she heard it before? That rich tone sounded so familiar. “You weren’t. If anything, you were making matters worse.”

Ashley clenched her jaw. She’d fought most of her life against being overprotected. To fight her own fights. After her childhood friend had been abducted it had seemed like her father hadn’t wanted to let her out of his sight. For years she’d had to beg to walk the two blocks to school. Even when he’d let her she’d caught him or her brother following her. It had taken going off to college to break away. She loved her father dearly but she would never return to that way of life. Having this doctor ride to the rescue wasn’t what she needed or wanted. She could take care of Marko and herself.

Dr. Bradford said sarcastically, “So, if I understand correctly, I should have just stood by while they scared you into doing whatever they wanted you to do, which by the way was what?”

“Marko doesn’t want the clinic to open. He believes it’s only here to keep tabs on him and his gang. You know, big brother watching and all that. What it amounts to is he’s afraid that if the people in Southriver have something positive, they’ll want more and stop letting him intimidate them. Push thugs like him out.”

“That’s what you want too, isn’t it?”

“Yes. I want to make this a good place to live.”

“Admirable. But if you’re not careful you won’t be around to see it happen.”

That might be true, but she’d spent so many years feeling cloistered and controlled, as if she couldn’t take care of herself, that as an adult she fought against it whenever it happened to her now. She wasn’t that brave in her personal life, always questioning her ability to judge if she was seeing the real person. Fighting to truly trust. Her being fooled before had destroyed someone’s life. She couldn’t let that happen again to her or anyone she cared about.

“Look around you.” She reached out an arm and directed it toward the buildings across the street. “Those were all businesses when I was growing up. Criminals like Marko slowly drove them away. I won’t be driven out. This clinic is the first step in bringing people back.”

“You have grand plans, Ms. Marsh.”

“I believe in dreaming big.”

“You have your work cut out for you.”

“Maybe so but when I ran for the city council I promised that I’d help make this area a better place to live and I intend to keep that promise.”

“Even if it kills you?”

She shrugged. “It won’t come to that. Let’s go in and I’ll show you around. Then we’ll get to work.” She turned toward the building. “By the way, don’t ever step between me and anyone again.”

What do you believe makes a man sexy?
Someone who enjoys having fun and laughing. It also doesn’t hurt for him to be willing to try something new as well.

Here's her short bio.
My love affair with books began when I made a bad grade in math in the sixth grade. Not allowed to watch TV until I brought the grade up, I filled my time with books. I turned my love of reading into a love of writing romance. If the hero is a smart, sexy and sinfully rich alpha male, he can be found in my books along with a strong heroine that captures the hero’s heart.

When I’m not writing I lead workshops on time management, promoting your books, learning to live with rejection, collaging your storyline and presenting a memorable workshop. For twenty years I was a high school substitute teacher and that is …another bio. I live near Atlanta, Georgia with my husband of over thirty years and have four grown children, and twin grandchildren. My youngest son received a heart transplant.

I love castles, traveling and sewing, crafting and read voraciously.

Look for Susan at the following places.
Twitter     Facebook     Goodreads    Website

Today's giveaway is a copy an autograph copy (both authors) of my duet White Wedding for a Southern Belle along with a Wedding Date for the Army Doc by Lynne Marshall. 

Question: When was the last time you tried something new and what was it? (Can be food, game, ride, etc.)

Leave an answer to be entered to win.  The winner will be announced this Saturday in the comment section.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Interview With Candace Blevins and Giveaway

Southern Magic is proud to introduce Candace Blevins!

She will be at our luncheon in Hoover, Alabama November 5 with Jennifer Ashley, Hildie McQueen, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Lynn Raye Harris, Dianna Love and 20 plus authors.

Who are your top five authors to read?
Just five? I’d have to say Faith Hunter, Seanan McGuire, Annabel Joseph, Ilona Andrews, and Anthony Francis. No, wait, how do I fit Nalini Singh in? Okay, so that’s six. I should be spanked.

What is your go-to book to read over and over again?

For pure romance within a power exchange relationship, I think it has to be Rough Canvas by Joey W. Hill. It’s M/m and probably not for mainstream readers, but the emotions and scenes are breathtaking.

Who influenced your writing the most? Why?

JRR Tolkien and Johnny Gruelle, because they brought fantasy alive to me as a young child. Johnny Gruelle created Raggedy Ann and Andy, and if you have young kids or grandkids, find one of the original books and read it to them. The series is pure magic. I was an avid reader at a young age, and I found Tolkien as soon as I went to middle school and had access to the library. I knew some trees were jealous of people, and used their roots to trip us just because they could! It was like Tolkien and I shared this secret, and everyone else thought he’d just made it up — just as I’d known my dolls really came to life at night when I’d been younger. I was hooked on fantasy by these two authors, and now I enjoy creating paranormal worlds that make people wonder if the guy in the grocery store buying all that beef is really a werewolf, and no one else knows.

Describe where you are the most productive when you write.

In my bed with my laptop at six in the morning, when the rest of my family is asleep. The combination of still being close to the dream world, and total silence in the house — it’s magic.

Tells us a little about your current book?

An Unhuman Journey is the second book in my urban fantasy series, but since there are three series in the same universe, it’s actually the fifteenth book I’ve written in this universe. You can see the reading order for the entire world in the graphic below.

Kirsten O’Shea is human, but she has a few talents to help her hold her own amongst the supernaturals. She’s made some powerful friends, but when she finds herself alone in another realm with the bad guys she has to rely on her own resources.

I’m currently writing the next book in the Chattanooga Supernaturals. We met Britches in Gonzo’s book — she’s one of the rare children of a wolf and human who didn’t change during puberty. She was raised as a werewolf, only to find out she was human when she hit her teen years. Now she’s a woman and still trying to figure out who she is. She asked Gonzo to bite her, but he had too much going on to take on the responsibility of a new wolf. I’m having a lot of fun writing her story.

Show us your one favorite scene of dialogue from that book.
As you probably figured out from the first question, I have a lot of trouble when people ask me about my favorites. My brain just doesn’t work that way. How about I show you a few of the teasers for Unhuman Journey, will that work?

What do you believe makes a man sexy?
Before you get to know him, it’s the way he walks, the way he looks out of his eyes, his self-confidence, and even the way he helps the little old lady with her groceries when he sees her struggling.

Once you get to know him, it becomes more about who he is. It’s the kiss on the forehead, or having dinner ready when you step in the door and he knows it’s been a rough day, or giving you slow and easy sex because of the same rough day, but then getting rough with you once slow-and-easy isn’t working anymore, and he knows what you need. In a relationship, it’s when both people can open up and be honest, when both people can take care of each other. We go for the bad-boys because they’re so good in bed, but if you can find a nice guy who happens to be bad in bed, isn’t that the ultimate sexy?

Here's her short bio.
Candace writes urban fantasy, paranormal romance, and a motorcycle club series.

Look for Candace at the following places.
Twitter     Facebook     Pinterest    Website

Today's giveaway is one copy from Candace's ebooks: Only Human, Duke, or The Dragon King - winner's choice. 

Question: If you could shift into another creature, what would it be?

Leave an answer to be entered to win.  The winner will be announced this Monday in the comment section.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Interview With Jillian Chantal and Giveaway

Southern Magic is proud to introduce Jillian Chantal!

She will be at our luncheon in Hoover, Alabama November 5 with Jennifer Ashley, Hildie McQueen, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Lynn Raye Harris, Dianna Love and 20 plus authors.

Who are your top five authors to read? 
I love Katherine Bone’s pirate books, I also love Suzanne Johnson’s series with the Sentinels of New Orleans, Sally McKenzie’s Naked series is always good for a quick read. I love Heather Graham- especially her ghost stories and the Tudor era stories by Philippa Gregory.

What is your go-to book to read over and over again? 
Any of the Tudor books. I love that era even though I’d never want to live back then. I like my indoor plumbing and contact lenses too much for that.

Who influenced your writing the most? Why? 

I think it was Kathleen Woodiwiss. My sister and I devoured her books when we were teens and it made me love the historical-set fiction.

Describe where you are the most productive when you write. 
On the couch with my laptop on the arm with a blanket over me and the fan and a/c blowing.

Tells us a little about your current book? 

My newest story is called The Orphan and the Duke. It’s set in Regency England and has a cat named Archimedes who plays a pivotal role (and no, he doesn’t talk- like the acquiring editor asked me when she only had the first three chapters- lol). It’s a love story, of course, but it also has an element of a real historical event in there. A sort of “what if” scenario in my mind. The heroine is hired to assist him in getting his sisters ready for their first season as their mother has passed away and he is the only other member of the family.

Show us your one favorite scene of dialogue from that book.
This isn’t really the best scene but I can’t spoil the book, can I? This one is where the hero is discussing with the heroine the role he has hired her for- to get his sisters ready for their first season.

“Not to interfere in your family’s business, but why did your aunt allow you to help prepare Miss Jane Mandeville and now Miss Susan? Why not do so herself?”

“She’s much too busy with her own endeavors. My aunt will attend the balls and parties as well as the court presentation, but she’s much too involved in other pursuits to take care of the day-to-day issues. That falls straight on me.”

“I hope adding my sisters doesn’t become too much for you.”

“It won’t. If Susan and I were going to be at the dressmaker’s shop anyway, there’s no issue in bringing along Lady Saffron and Lady Jonquil as well. All the things she needs will be the same as theirs.”

“There are a few other things I’m not sure Saffron and Jonquil know.” Basil picked up his cup and took a sip of his tea.

“What’s that?”

“Dancing, for one. I know they had a dancing master who used to come to the house, but I’m not sure how much he taught them. They were still rather young when that occurred, and I believe they spent more time hiding from him than learning.”

Amelia laughed. “I’m surprised by that. Most young girls are more apt to flirt with a dance master than run from him. It’s usually their first introduction to the opposite sex, and they are likely to get the giggles around him. Or at least my cousins did.”

“Sadly, the one my mother hired had chronic flatulence and a huge mole on his cheek that made Jonquil nervous. She never explained why, but she was quite frightened of the mark on his face. Almost as if it had a life of its own.”

“I imagine the flatulence was bad enough to put them off dancing.” She took a sip of her tea.

“And did you receive dancing lessons as well?” Basil rather hoped she did and that she’d flirted with the master too. He wanted for her to have at least some happy childhood memories. Why do I care so much that she is happy?

“I was the other partner, so you see? I actually am better with the male part. While Jane danced with the master, I took the same position as he and danced with Susan. We would trade partners periodically. Especially when Susan complained too much.”

Knowing that Susan probably complained every chance she got, Basil was sure Amelia didn’t have much of a chance to enjoy the dance lessons.

What do you believe makes a man sexy? 
Being there for the woman in his life. Taking care of the tires, oil in the car, etc. Showing his love in many small ways. And if he’s got awesome forearms that look good in a shirt with the sleeves rolled up, what’s the harm in that??

Here's her short bio.
Jillian Chantal is multi-published in the romance genre. She’s a lawyer by day and writer, amateur photographer and history buff by night. Jillian lives on the beautiful gulf coast of Florida and loves her little slice of paradise. But not too much to enjoy world-wide travel every chance she gets. After all, a writer and photographer needs new and exciting places to go and capture in order to stay fresh, right? And there’s nothing quite like seeing historical places in person, is there?

Jillian loves to hear from readers.

Look for Jillian at the following places.

Today's giveaway is an e-book of Jillian's, The Orphan and The Duke.

Question: What's the title or/and author of the first ROMANCE you read?

Leave an answer to be entered to win.  The winner will be announced this Saturday in the comment section.