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Sin’s Gift, Coming October 2nd!
Saturday, September 15th, 2018

Love a good spooky tale? This one’s coming October 2nd (never mind what Kindle says). And it’s the first of two, maybe more—if you like them. It’ll be completely up to you if I write more. So, let me know…

Sin’s Gift

When police officer Sinead O’Rourke returns to duty months after being shot in an incident that claimed her partner, she knows it’s not going to be easy. Despite being cleared of any negligence, her fellow officers still wonder whether she’s responsible for his death. One more problem is that everyone knows she claims to have seen his ghost. After months of rehabilitation and lying like hell about the fact she’s not seeing spooks anymore, Sin’s determined to get back into the saddle.

Jake doesn’t want to partner with Sin. Been there, done that—couldn’t keep his hands off her the first time around. She’s too much of a distraction, and her penchant for rushing into trouble scares the heck out of him. Despite wishing she’d quit her job, he’s still deeply attracted. When an armed robbery goes down and something happens that rattles Sin to the core, he’s right there—ready to cover her back and her sweet body.

Pre-order your copy now!

There’s no place like home.

The police substation didn’t sit at the end of the rainbow or anywhere near Kansas, but for some reason that stupid phrase ran like a mantra through Sinead O’Rourke’s head as she drew a deep breath and pushed through the double-doors leading into the station house. Once inside, she kept her gaze focused straight ahead, ignoring the way conversations died away as one by one the officers on duty noticed who’d entered their midst.

So, she’d been gone a while. No doubt San Antonio’s finest whispered she looked a little different than they remembered. A few even knew she’d gone nuts for a while. But their red-headed stepchild was back.

Fuck them, anyway.

Sin headed straight to the Lieutenant’s office and knocked on his door.

“Come in.”

Relieved to escape the thick atmosphere of the open floor, she knew she’d only traded one bleeding wound for another when the patrol shift lieutenant, Clayton Kalisek, glanced up and stiffened at the sight of her. “Glad to see you made it, O’Rourke.”

“Yeah, I finally got tired of sitting on my ass,” she said with more attitude than she felt. “Only so many Dr.Phil’s a body can stand.”

“Sit down for a second while we have a talk.”

She shut the door behind her and warily took the chair in front of his desk. Just as she remembered, his set expression didn’t give away a thing he was thinking. “What’s on your mind, Lieutenant? The doctors gave me a clean bill of health.”

His narrowed gaze landed on the scar on her cheek then locked with hers again. “If you’re not ready for this, just say so.”

Some things never changed. Lieutenant Kalisek still knew just where to stick his dull knife. “I’m fine,” she said, her tone curt since she wasn’t about to bother hiding her irritation.

“Sure, you are.” But he didn’t sound convinced. He leaned back in his chair and continued to stare. “I’m putting you with Chappa, again. I know you two have a history…”

Chappa. Shit. They had plenty of history, all right. Most of it bad. “Fine,” she bit out. “Have you broken the good news to him?”

Clay’s face tightened with a pained expression. “Told him yesterday.”

“Wish you’d waited until I was in the room,” she said, a mirthless grin sliding along her lips. “Bet he was loud.”

The lieutenant’s ice blue eyes narrowed. “He’s not going to cut you any slack.”

Her chin came up. “Don’t need any.”

His nod was curt. “Very well. Get out on the street.”

That was it? Feeling a little deflated, like she’d worried about nothing, she hesitated. “You’re not going to say anything about the psych eval?”

“Doc said you’re ready—that the meds and the time off did the trick.” His expression tightened. “Should I ask you if you’re still talking to ghosts?”

A lump burned the back of her throat as she caught sight of Danny standing just behind the Lieutenant’s shoulder. “No ghosts,” she lied, ignoring the grin splitting her late partner’s face.

She shot up off the chair and turned to open the door.

“Like I said, O’Rourke. Chappa’s not gonna cut you any slack.”

She nodded over her shoulder, not daring to look back.

Claire Gem: Antebellum Dreams
Wednesday, April 4th, 2018

It was 1995 or so, and I had made my home on the west coast of Florida with my husband and three kids. We’d been living there for about ten years, and the cost of living along with the cost of raising three kids was pinching a bit . . . plus, property values were up. Some very good friends of ours had recently sold their Florida farm for fat cash and moved up into Alabama, near Birmingham. They bragged about the low cost of living, property, et al. We drove up to visit and toyed with the idea of relocating there as well.

Yes, property was cheap. We went around with a real estate agent who showed us vacant land for hundreds of dollars an acre instead of thousands. He also said he had a very nice, antebellum home that was in some need of repair . . . it had been empty a long time. It was within our price range. We visited the home.

Wow. The tour of that day, apparently, branded my memory. I’d never been inside a plantation-style home, and this was laid out like a mini-Tara. Much smaller, but complete with soaring ceiling heights, a curved stairway, and upper and lower front porch galleries. It was, yes, in need of some TLC. Some updating. Maybe more than a little.

As I walked through that house I had the feeling I was being watched. Like we weren’t alone. The hair at the base of my neck prickled and gooseflesh puckered my skin, even though it was a very hot, summer day. I kept getting the unsettling feeling that there was something—or someone—just beyond my line of vision. But when I turned, there was no one there.

We didn’t move to Alabama. Jobs were hard to come by, and no matter how cheap the land was, anything we could afford—including the antebellum home—was in the middle of nowhere. We remained in Florida for nearly another decade.

Fast forward to 2017. I had long ago forgotten the tour of the antebellum home in Alabama. We had eventually moved—three times, from Florida to Texas to North Carolina, and ultimately landed in Massachusetts. But from somewhere in the depths of my memory, the Alabama memory resurfaced one night in a dream. Complete with the ghost of a Confederate soldier pounding on the front door.

Civil Hearts was born.

Civil Hearts

He’s a sexy Southern gentleman—with epilepsy. She’s a widow scarred from her late husband’s brain cancer. Her new home, an abandoned antebellum mansion, is haunted by a Confederate soldier—and she’s a Yankee.

A widow with no family, web designer Liv Larson yearns for big change. After all, she can work from anywhere, right? Why not throw a dart at the map? She heads out of the big city for the rural South and falls in love as soon as she arrives—with the Belle Bride, an abandoned antebellum mansion.

Heath Barrow loves his country life, managing his antiques store in sleepy Camellia. But he’s lonely, and his condition—epilepsy—makes life uncertain. It’s already cost him a marriage. A new medication and the new girl in town have his heart hopeful again.

Sparks fly between Heath and Liv. But his first seizure sends Liv into a tailspin. Its mimics those her husband suffered before he died . . .

To make matters worse, Liv discovers she’s not living alone. Her challenge? Dealing with a Confederate soldier, one who clearly resents his Yankee roommate—even though he’s been dead for over a hundred and fifty years.

Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2GPU5er
Book Trailer: https://youtu.be/skHJRlU5fOQ

About the Author

  

 Strong Women, Starting Over

~Redefining Romance~

Claire is a multi-published, award winning author of five titles in the genres of contemporary romance, supernatural suspense, and women’s fiction. She also writes Author Resource guide books, and presents seminars on writing craft and marketing.

Her supernatural suspense, Hearts Unloched, won the 2016 New York Book Festival, and was a finalist in the 2017 RONE Awards. Also in 2017, her women’s fiction, The Phoenix Syndrome, was a finalist in the National Reader’s Choice Awards, and her contemporary romance, A Taming Season, was a Literary Award of Merit finalist in the HOLT Medallion Awards. Her latest release, Spirits of the Heart, was a finalist in the 2017 “I Heart Indie Awards.”

Creating cross-genre fiction she calls “supernatural suspense,” Claire loves exploring the paranormal and the unexplained, and holds a certificate in Parapsychology from the Rhine Research Center of Duke University.

A New York native, Claire has lived in five of the United States and held a variety of jobs, from waitress to bridal designer to research technician—but loves being an author best. She and her happily-ever-after hero, her husband of 39 years, now live in central Massachusetts.

Website: http://www.clairegem.com

Claire Gem: When Imagination Becomes Reality
Sunday, March 11th, 2018

Or vice versa. In the writing of my latest release, Spirits of the Heart, I had a very creepy event occur that literally stalled the completion of the book for over eighteen months.

In June of 2015, I was in the middle of crafting my new supernatural suspense, set on the grounds of an abandoned mental asylum in the town where I grew up. My sister, Terri, who is a professional photographer as well as my cover designer, spent the day with me driving around the old campus of the Middletown Psych Center. The asylum, which officially closed the doors of its last building in 1996, had stood vacant for almost twenty years. While some of the buildings were repurposed, others were left to crumble under the cruelty of time and vagrants. One building in particular, Talcott Hall, called to me.

Terri took photos for the cover and book trailer while I spun tales in my head about what would happen next in my novel. Although it was surrounded by eight-foot tall chain link fence, we spent most of our time there. It had served as the “maximum security” unit—the one reserved for the most disturbed, the most violent of patients. The vibes around this monstrous brick edifice were almost palpable. It was as though the walls themselves had absorbed some of the pain, fear, loneliness, and desperation of the patients it housed, and could be felt even from behind the chain link barrier.

My research into the history of mental health facilities revealed the horrors patients endured throughout the 1800s, and well into the next century. Admitting diagnoses ranged from melancholia, or depression, to epilepsy, and even diabetes. Because the medical community did not understand the causes for the seizures caused by the two latter conditions, they labeled them as mental illness, and people were locked away. Families often abandoned their kin there, sometimes not even taking responsibility for their burial after they died. It is rumored that wealthy men who tired of their wives admitted them for melancholia, then had the marriage annulled and went off to find another wife.

“Treatments” could more accurately defined as medieval torture. Unruly patients were often bound like mummies, wrapped tightly in cold, wet sheets until they became more tractable. Many asylums housed rows of porcelain bathtubs in their basements, where patients were soaked in hot water for long hours until it drew the fight out of them. Not to mention the drugs, experimental surgical treatments (like lobotomies), or electric shock treatments.

It is no wonder that old asylums are considered by paranormal investigators to be the most haunted of places. If ever there were ever good reasons for a spirit to be confused, trapped, and unable to move on, these poor souls had them.

In Spirits of the Heart, Talcott Hall is where the spirits of many tormented souls, including a little girl and her father, remain trapped.

Spirits of the Heart

Addiction counselor Laura Horton returns from college to move in with an old friend and start her career. But her homecoming is jarring. Her friend moves out, leaving Laura alone with the gorgeous but intimidating ex-boyfriend—in a house that snugs up to an ancient graveyard.

Officer Miller Stanford is a man with a shattered past. His alcoholic dad destroyed their family, a weakness Miller is terrified will consume him too. The last thing he needs is a sexy, blonde addiction counselor watching his every move. When he begins to see specters in the dark, he starts questioning his own stability.

But Laura sees her too—a pathetic child-spirit searching for her father. When Laura starts digging into old asylum records, the eerie events escalate . . . Can Miller and Laura uncover the secrets of Talcott Hall without jeopardizing their love—and lives—in the process?

Buy Links:
Createspace | Amazon | Book Trailer

After spending that day with Terri collecting photos and vibes from Talcott Hall to complete the writing of Spirits of the Heart, my muse was on fire. I was nearly halfway through writing the novel when . . .

Two weeks later, the building burned to the ground in a mysterious fire that was labeled arson, with no suspects ever apprehended.

For over a year, my “muse” went on strike. It seemed no matter what I did, I couldn’t write another word on my book. I had known how the story ended (or thought I had), and had already outlined almost have of the novel. But I was so heartbroken that the building, my inspiration, was gone, I just couldn’t write about it.

Until I figured out a way to weave the fire into the story. I contacted one of the firemen, Nick Elia, and gained permission to use some of his fantastic pictures of the blaze in my trailer. At one of the book signings in Middletown, I met Nick in person, and he related the strange occurrences that happened the night of that fire.

He was off duty, but heard the first alarm pulled on his radio—to a location clear across town from the Psych center. His colleagues reported that when they got to that location and found no fire, they were summoned to another alarm downtown. Again, no fire. This happened three times before they finally saw the smoke billowing from over the Middletown Psych Center. By the time the trucks arrived, the entire building was engulfed. Being a photography buff, Nick came to the scene to shoot the fantastic pictures I used in my book trailer. These, along with the photos taken by Terri two weeks earlier, are the last photographs in existence of Talcott Hall.

Claire Gem

About the Author

Strong Women, Starting Over
~Redefining Romance~

Claire is a multi-published, award winning author of five titles in the genres of contemporary romance, supernatural suspense, and women’s fiction. She also writes Author Resource guide books and presents seminars on writing craft and marketing.

Her supernatural suspense, Hearts Unloched, won the 2016 New York Book Festival, and was a finalist in the 2017 RONE Awards. Also in 2017, her women’s fiction, The Phoenix Syndrome, was a finalist in the National Reader’s Choice Awards, and her contemporary romance, A Taming Season, was a Literary Award of Merit finalist in the HOLT Medallion Awards. Her latest release, Spirits of the Heart, was a finalist in the 2017 “I Heart Indie Awards.”

Creating cross-genre fiction she calls “supernatural suspense,” Claire loves exploring the paranormal and the unexplained, and holds a certificate in Parapsychology from the Rhine Research Center of Duke University.

A New York native, Claire has lived in five of the United States and held a variety of jobs, from waitress to bridal designer to research technician—but loves being an author best. She and her happily-ever-after hero, her husband of 39 years, now live in central Massachusetts.

Claire is available for seminars & media interviews & loves to travel for book promotional events.

Media Links:
Website: http://www.clairegem.com
Blogs: http://www.clairegem.wordpress.com
http://www.hauntedpathways.wordpress.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/clairegem.author
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/gemwriter
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8284235.Claire_Gem
Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/2nabvbm
Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCO-vB7WDZhEQ8U4YpC937ng

Robin Michaela: Baby, That’s the Spirit!
Wednesday, October 18th, 2017

Thanks, Delilah, for the guest blogger opportunity!

My new release, Baby, That’s the Spirit!, has a Halloween theme. The heroine, Amethyst, can see and speak with the dead and, of course, the hero, Adam, thinks that’s a bunch of crap.

In the excerpt below, the characters are on a date and winding their way through a corn maze. In the dark. Without a flashlight.

I can say from personal experience, that’s not the easiest thing to do, especially when you’re in a haunted corn maze, as it was in my case. When you turn a corner and the corn stalks come alive as a life sized scarecrow leaps out at you, well…bring extra underwear. Thankfully, we had a full moon (and other people’s flashlights) to navigate by, but the creepy vibes really jacked up the fear factor!

Anyhow, after I put Amethyst and Adam into the setting, I started wondering about corn mazes. Turns out, the first one was made right here in the U. S. A. in Annville, PA.  It was 3 acres in size and had just under 2 miles of pathways. Apparently, that’s teensy, because the 2014 Guinness World Record holder was 60 acres (Wikipedia says so). So many people got lost in it and called 911, the town’s police chief started handing out maps.

Mazes have been around for millennia, but the corn variety only popped up in 1993. Although some of the intricate patterns are cut by a GPS-equipped tractor, many are hand cut, requiring days or even weeks to fabricate.

One of the most fun things about a corn maze is the chance to get lost in one with your sweetheart, like Adam and Amethyst. Since it’s that time of year, why not grab the person you most want to get naughty with, then sneak away to the closest maze and find a hidden corner? Who knows, you just might get a treat!

Baby, That’s the Spirit!

When free-spirited clairvoyant, Amethyst Raines, comes to Sweetness to tell fortunes at the fall festival, she crosses circuits with hunky electrical contractor, Adam Burkett. While she’s drawn to him, she has no intention of getting involved with the sexy single dad. The problem is, she has a message for him from beyond the grave…and, she’d deliver it, if she could just get the infuriating man to believe she can speak with the dead.

Cynical skeptic Adam is tired of deceitful women. All he wants to do is finish out his job contract and settle his beloved grandmother’s estate before saying good-bye to Sweetness forever. And, he’s definitely not going to be tempted by a woman who claims she can talk to spirits. But when his little girl goes missing, Adam will do anything to find her, including putting his faith in the seductive medium he can’t seem to resist.

She’s trying to solve a century-old secret; he’s trying to find his daughter. If they can work together, their relationship just might stand a ghost of a chance.

Buy Links:
Amazon   (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B076B56V9J?)
Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36384048-baby-that-s-the-spirit)

Excerpt:

Hell, if she affected him this much after two days, it would be stupid to spend any more time with her. He was selling Nana Millie’s property and going west. Amethyst was heading to Florida for another fair in less than a month. Nothing could come from his attraction to her. If he had the sense God gave a flea, he would just get through the corn maze, make it an early evening, and put her out of his mind for good.

He’d have given that particular idea a good shot, too, except she grabbed his hand. “C’mon, let’s see if we can beat them to the finish,” she said, pointing to Beau and Jenna who were already turning the corner at the end of the first row of the maze.

At her touch, that weird tingling sensation snaked through his fingertips again before shooting straight up his arm and ricocheting straight down to his groin.

Her eyes went wide and her lips formed a surprised circle. Which made Adam start thinking about what her mouth would taste like if he kissed her. Or how sexy she’d sound if they indulged in any of the other activities that had been running through his mind since he’d met up with her at Beau and Jenna’s place before dinner.

When she’d opened the door of her pink, purple, and blue-striped – what did she call it? A tiny house? – he’d nearly drowned in a wave of pure lust. Her low-cut purple tunic was belted at her waist. The neckline skimmed the mounds of her breasts and her amethyst necklace nestled between the tantalizing globes, making his fingers itch to touch them. The bottom of her blouse ended just above the curve of her tight ass, accentuating her enticing buttocks. And her long, shapely legs were encased in black leggings that hugged every inch of supple muscle she’d built up through years of yoga and running.

If Beau and Jenna hadn’t been standing there with him, they’d never have made it to the restaurant.

Amethyst shook him out of his erotic fantasies when she tightened her grip on his hand and leaned into him. Her flowery fragrance caressed his nostrils as she draped a slim arm around his neck. “Or, on the other hand, we could forget all about beating them and go get lost in the dark for a while.” Her voice sounded husky.

A half-moon was rising. It cast a soft glow over the dried corn stalks — barely enough to see the path between the shadows. Even so, he clearly saw her drop her gaze to his mouth and slowly lick her lower lip.

He cleared his throat. “Getting lost sounds pretty tempting.” Hell, what was he talking about? It was extremely tempting.

“Then let’s go see how much fun corn mazes can be.” She briefly touched her soft lips to his before towing Adam behind her in the opposite direction her cousin had taken.

A few turns, one scarecrow, and three ghosts later, she stopped so suddenly he nearly ran into her. By the time he realized what was happening, she’d whirled around, slipped her arms around his neck, and pressed herself fully against his rising erection.

Heat exploded through his body. He wrapped her in his arms to pull her even closer.

She moaned and relaxed against him. Adam cupped her head with one hand and slanted his mouth across hers. He nudged her lips with his tongue, urging her to open for him. When she complied with a small sigh, the sound made his shaft jerk.

She moaned when she felt him twitch.

Their kiss heated even more when her tongue slipped in to explore his mouth. She slid her arms down his shoulders, curled her fingers into the fabric of his shirt, and rocked her pelvis against him. Her tongue stroked along his and he drew deeply on it as he tunneled his fingers into her short hair.

They broke apart when they heard the laughter and shrieks of an approaching group of kids. He noticed she was panting. She dropped her head to rest against his chest as if the kiss had made her too weak to hold it up. His male pride kicked in at that, although he was panting pretty hard himself.

The kids rounded the corner, carrying flashlights. Golden beams bounced off Adam and Amethyst, the ground, and the withered corn stalks like a demented strobe light that made everything appear to be moving.

She let go of his shirt and drew a shaky hand across her mouth, then held his gaze as the group tramped toward them, their feet making crunching noises in the dried shucks littering the path. Her eyes seemed softer in the reflection of pale moonlight and Adam felt like he was falling into their depths.

About Robin

Robin Michaela has been reading romances since her teen years, when she first snuck her aunt’s copy of The Flame and the Flower, by Kathleen Woodiwiss.

She’s married to her own Handsome Prince (a military airman) and has lived everywhere from the sunny shores of Florida to the wild crags of the Colorado Rocky Mountains. She currently resides in the Deep South. By day, she’s a dental hygienist and by night, Robin can be found eating chocolate, training for her next half marathon, and crafting her next novel (although not necessarily in that order).

Robin’s stories have been called “a simply delicious escape”. Sparks fly and desire sizzles when her irresistible heroines challenge the men of their dreams.

Robin loves to hear from readers. Connect with her at:

Website  (www.robinmichaela.com)
Facebook    (https://www.facebook.com/AuthorRobinMichaela)
Twitter   (https://twitter.com/robinsromances)
Amazon Author page   (https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B01N1MUNAL)
Blog    (www.robinmichaela.com/blog)
Newsletter  (http://eepurl.com/csTPsH)

The Caitlyn O’Connell Novels are on sale!
Saturday, March 18th, 2017

I thought I’d mention it. Both Shattered Souls and Lost Souls are only $0.99 right now. If you don’t know a thing about them, I’ll tell you that I think they are the best-written books I’ve produced. The stories are deep, the mysteries and the spookiness will keep you on the edge of your seat. If you love a fiesty heroine, a sexy hero and a different kind of paranormal story, you will love these two books! Get them now while the price is dirt-cheap!

From popular author Delilah Devlin comes the unforgettable heroine, Caitlyn O’Connell—a psychic ex-cop who’s hell-bent on redemption.

Caitlyn O’Connell had it all: a career with the Memphis PD, a passionate marriage, and the satisfaction that her work made a difference in the world. But she also had a secret, a supernatural “gift” that cost her everything. Now she scrapes by as a private investigator, taking cases the cops won’t touch and counting down the minutes until happy hour.

But when Sam Pierce, her former partner and estranged ex-husband, comes to her for help with a bizarre murder case, Cait can’t say no. And not just because Sam is still as irresistibly sexy as he was on the day they met. Something sinister—and demonic—is terrorizing Memphis, leaving a bloody trail of bodies and clues only Cait can read. Together she and Sam will venture into a dark world of magic and unholy terror, hunting a killer who will lead them to the brink of reality as they know it—and back into the thrall of their stormy past. Steamy and suspenseful, Shattered Souls is the pulse-quickening new offering from fan favorite romance author Delilah Devlin.

Get your copy here!

Fan favorite Delilah Devlin delivers her second paranormal romantic thriller featuring unforgettable heroine, Caitlyn O’Connell. This time, the psychic PI joins her police detective ex-husband to find a demon pulling women into the past to commit their murders in a seedy Memphis hotel.

Private Investigator Caitlyn O’Connell is tapped by Memphis PD to discover who has been using a Memphis hotel as his killing ground. Women are going missing, and their bodies are found inside the walls of the hotel. But the bodies themselves? They appear to have been murdered in the distant past. With ghosthunters and cops crawling all over the crime scene, Cait and her detective ex-husband Sam Pierce race to find the demon responsible before he kills again.

Get your copy here!

Augustina Van Hoven: The End of a Series
Thursday, February 2nd, 2017

Coming to the end of a series is both exciting and sad.  It’s a lot like graduating from school.  I’m excited to move on to new adventures but sad to be leaving old friends behind

The Rose series started when I heard the song KISSED BY A ROSE, sung by Seal.  The words from the chores inspired me.  “I might compare you to a kiss from a rose on the grave.”  I heard those words and had a flash of a grave in winter with its headstone half buried and a blood red rose resting on the snow.  This vision and my background in politics combined to form the foundation for the series.

I have been a staffer for two different congressmen, a campaign consultant for numerous campaigns, and I have substituted for my Representative in the Idaho legislature.  I pulled a lot from my experience to write the political parts of the three books.  The three political issues my characters have to deal with are real and have either been reviewed by interim committees or actually debated in the legislature. The supernatural parts of the story were the most fun to write.  How would a legislator explain that he was being haunted?  It’s not something you want to advertise to your constituents or let your opponents catch wind of.

The hardest part of finishing this series is saying goodbye to characters who have been in my head for years.  I had the idea for these stories for quite some time before I ever sat down to type the first line.  Like many writers I know a lot more about my characters than the parts that made it onto the page.  Not all of a character’s back story fits into the series but it is still information that I as an author need to know in order to create a well-rounded and believable character.  They are like real people to me.  Many Sundays when I sang hymns in church I would check the date of the song, and if it was before 1882, I often wondered if Rose would have sung this one.  At least I have the satisfaction of tying up the loose ends and giving my characters the happy ever after that they all deserved.

Do you every miss characters when you finish reading a book and know there will be no new adventures?

Augustina Van Hoven
Proving Love is Strange

THE KISS OF A ROSE
THE THORN OF A ROSE
THE BLOOM OF A ROSE – Available March 14th

www.augustinavanhoven.com

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Augustina-Van-Hoven-Author/336028986575129
Twitter:  @augustinavhoven
Pinterest: Augustina Van Hoven, Author

The Bloom of a Rose

 

Rachel Bartlett doesn’t expect to meet the man of her dreams at a funeral.  But a chance conversation with Paul Miller inserts her in a political game between good and evil.  Unfortunately, her political strategist mother has other plans for her, and they don’t include romance.  Paul is the exact wrong guy for her, but sometimes it takes someone from the opposition to show you the way out of the maze.

Paul Miller is fighting battles on multiple fronts, and he doesn’t have time for an infatuation with a liberal graphic artist, no matter how blue her eyes or how sharp her wit.  If his trust is misplaced, then a wrong move loses the game.

What the couple doesn’t know is that they are not alone.  Supernatural beings battle behind the scenes—and humans are all pawns on a chessboard.  The outcome of the game will determine not only what the future might be…but whether or not there even is one.

Available March 14th

Ane Ryan Walker: A Ghost Story
Sunday, January 29th, 2017

It is only through labor and painful effort, by grim energy and resolute courage, that we move on to better things.
― Theodore Roosevelt

So I am beginning to ask myself if Indie publishing is a better thing. I am not sure.

I have been writing for a long time. I do have a distinctive voice, and I read across many genres. Fortunately, both of my parents were avid readers and I could read long before I went to school. This kind of thing can really turn you off to education, but I was fortunate, that is not what happened to me.

My Dad used to let me read the newspapers with him, every day. Moreover, I still have an order for reading the newspaper: Horoscope first, comics second, and then the news. My Dad used to tell me, it is a good thing to have a positive outlook, (horoscope first) try to never lose your sense of humor, (comics second) and finally yet importantly, be informed (news).

This might not seem like great advice to give a four year old who is not yet in school, but it was not only great advice, but it served me well most of my adult life. I still read every day, and still read the newspaper in that order.

People often ask me what influences my stories. Those folks who know me well understand I grew up in a large family, in an old Victorian house with an odd reputation. People in my hometown believed it was haunted.

Truth be told, it was.

When my family acquired the house, I was given the back bedroom on the second floor. The house still had gaslights in each room although these lights had not been in use for many years. You see, the house sat vacant for a number of years, and that is probably why people believed it to be haunted.

I did not think much about it at the time, until one night I woke up to the sound of someone opening the door to my room. There was a full moon, and the light streaming in my window allowed the average person to read a newspaper. I knew this because I read every night. Moreover, earlier I used the moonlight to exceed my reading time.

So the knob rattled and turned and a man, youngish—about in his early thirties, stuck his head in the door and surveyed the room. He moved into the room from the hall, and took off his jacket, which he hung in the closet. He closed the closet door, walked past my bed to the window opposite me, and opened it wide. He then climbed out the window and was gone.

The first night I screamed bloody murder, but my mother did not believe me. She said I was dreaming. This happened often over the next few months and finally, I started to pay more attention to the ghostly images.

You see, the room would change with the nightly apparition. Once the visitor finished his trip across my room, things returned to normal. One night my best friend spent the night, and she witnessed what I’d been seeing for several months. Only this time, when the room returned to “normal” the window remained open. I also had a witness.

Keep in mind, as a young girl, I was not likely to share a story my parents told me would make me seem crazy to my friends. But, now . . . my best friend knew exactly what was happening.

Those early encounters, better explained by my Irish grandfather, became more of an adventure than frightening encounters. They happened on and off through the years of adolescence. None was truly frightening or hostile, but when people do not believe you or make you think you are crazy. Well, that is just wrong.

Highly likely you will encounter ghosts in many of my stories. I know how ghosts can catch you off guard, and sometimes frighten you when they only mean to help. Look for ghosts in my next book, The Covenant, about a white witch fresh from college with a brand-new MBA who returns home to revive the family business and learns secrets that may destroy her future.

Better yet, read the two free short stories on my website, http://www.aneryanwalker.com

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