Archive for 'military romance'
Tuesday, February 6th, 2018
We’re still on grandma watch here. Her respirations are slowing, and she’s only woken up a couple of times the past day or so. My sister, Elle James, and her dd arrived yesterday to provide much-needed relief. We’ll likely be holed up in grandma’s room, tending to her while we try to sprint through some pages today. Anything to keep our minds engaged elsewhere.
Do you have big things planned for today? I have a suggestion! Read the excerpt below from Baby, It’s You, and tell me you’re not tempted to find a SEAL book-boyfriend to spend your day with!
Comment for a chance to win one of my Uncharted SEALs stories!
Click on a cover to explore the series!
Baby, It’s You
Carter Vance, Jr. stands at the fork in the road. Wounded in action, the Navy SEAL has a decision to make: whether to find work with a spec ops unit, or return to his family ranch in Texas and repair his fractured relationship with his dying father and the woman he wronged. Complicating the decision is his reignited attraction to Melanie Schaeffer and his confusion over his feelings for his dead brother’s little girl, whom Melanie has raised since his brother’s and her sister’s deaths by a terrorist’s bomb.
Read an excerpt…
The morning that would change Melanie Schaeffer’s life forever began quietly enough. The whoosh of a curtain opening sounded a moment before sunlight spilled across her bed. Melanie rolled to her back to see the maid picking up clothing Melanie had left draped over a chair the night before.
A blush crept into her cheeks. She didn’t think she’d ever grow accustomed to having someone else handle her intimate items. “You don’t have to do that,” Melanie said as she pushed another pillow behind her head. “I can clean up after myself.”
The maid gave her a cheerful smile. “It’s my job. And I wouldn’t have woken you at all, but you did say you wanted to get used to the time change…”
Yes, there was that. After two days, she still felt a little muzzy-headed. The nine hours’ difference in time zones from Austin to this little city bordering Asia and the Middle East took some getting used to. Melanie rubbed her eyes and blinked, focusing on the sun peeking through the arched window and the view of the lovely, lush garden beyond it. Bushes exploding with large cabbage roses and tall, fruit-laden palms nearly obscured the ten-foot wall surrounding the estate nestled in the diplomats’ sector. Read the rest of this entry »
Monday, January 29th, 2018
Last year, Susan Stoker invited me to come write in her Special Forces: Operation Alpha Kindle World. I’m a fan of the lady and her writing. When she first ask, I said I would love to, BUT… Yeah, it’s always the “qualifiers” which get you. In my case, it was an overloaded writing schedule coupled with spinal issues. Still, I never forgot the invitation and as November drew closer, I found an open window of time and plunged in to write Securing Arizona.
Military romance was one of my first loves when it came to writing romance. I kicked off my career years ago with Always a Marine, and other stories. I’ve always liked lawmen, and I love my shifters, but the military hero remains special to me.
There’s nothing quite like a hero or heroine who serves their country. These are people who write a blank check with their lives on the dotted line and they do it day in and day out. Some come home whole, some come home with the scars on the outside, and more come home with the scars on the inside. These are individuals are highly trained, and often have to act restrained. They are prepared for anything and everything—and when it comes to any action adventure tale or as I like to call them, love on the run, they make some of the best conflict-equipped characters, emotionally and physically.
When it comes to romance, we expect our heroes and heroines to save the day, save the girl, save the guy—save everyone. We know our military characters have been trained, and trained, and have I mentioned, trained? They’re disciplined, they handle weapons, can do a threat assessment, and are usually loaded with oodles of determination to get the job done.
They’re also trained to compartmentalize, so when tragedy strikes as it does in Chasing Katie (shout out to the fantastic Elle James who invited me to play in her world, too), we know they are going to take an emotional hit but they won’t stay down and they won’t stop until they get their target. Throw love into the mix and it becomes a powder keg that I can’t get enough of—reading or writing wise.
If you were to ask me what I love about these types of heroes (and yes, heroines) the most, I’d answer their loyalty. There’s a camaraderie developed between people who have trained together, served together, shed blood together and even if they were never in the same unit or the same mission or even in the same room before, you can put two people who served together and the respect and understanding just seems to exist.
Emotional baggage comes with any life choice and career, but if you throw in a romantic history with a deadly threat and a reunion neither character ever imagined happening and the need to build trust on the fly? Then you’d have Guarding Gertrude.
The best part of writing military romance whether it’s a tale of battle recovery, on the run, coming home, or featuring shifters? I get to work with some of the most complicated and best characters there are.
What do you love about military romance?
Check out Heather Long’s recent on-the-air appearance courtesy of the fabulous Cindy Dees: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/authorsontheair/2018/01/11/interview-with-bestselling-author-heather-long
Wednesday, January 17th, 2018
Thank you, Delilah Devlin, for inviting me to celebrate the release of SAM’S SURRENDER, the fourth book in my Hearts & Heroes series.
I loved writing the stories in this series because I got to include places I’d been or wanted to go in my work. In Wyatt’s War, the setting was San Antonio, Texas and the beautiful River Walk. In Mack’s Witness, I took the brothers to Ireland for Wyatt’s wedding. In Ronin’s Return, I took Ronin to Venice, one of my favorite cities in the world! It was beautiful and magical.
In Sam’s Surrender, Sam picked the Greek Island of Santorini as his vacation spot. I’d been to San Antonio, Ireland and Venice, but I have not been to Santorini. It’s on my bucket list!
I love to travel and I’m working my way across the world one country at a time. It’s hard for me to believe there are people who have never left their home town or state. The world is full of beautiful and interesting places and people. I want to see them all! I hope you give Sam’s Surrender a chance and visit Santorini vicariously if not for real!
Amazon | Kobo | Nook | GooglePlay | iBooks
When the stress of the job pushes Sam Magnus to take greater risks than is called for as a helicopter pilot with the US Army 160th Night Stalkers, his commander insists he extend his leave for much-needed R&R. With no clue how to chill, he relies on a dart thrown at a map to determine where he should spend his unwanted vacation. The Greek island of Santorini it is! Used to non-stop action, the thought of lolling in the sun for two weeks makes him want to hurt someone. Until he interferes with an attempted kidnapping of one hot babe his first night on the island.
Stranded on Santorini, abandoned by the wealthy couple who hired her, former au pair, Kinsey Phillips, has enough going wrong with being broke and homeless, she doesn’t need to add an attempted kidnapping to her list of troubles. An Army helicopter pilot swoops in to rescue her, and thus begins a whole new set of troubles.
Thursday, January 11th, 2018
Thank you Delilah Devlin for inviting me to celebrate the release of the most recent books in the BROTHERHOOD PROTECTORS KINDLE WORLD – http://amzn.to/2FqB7rk
What is a Kindle World? It’s a world created by one author but open to other authors to write in. It’s like fan fiction. Each of the authors who’ve written in my Brotherhood Protectors revisit my characters or settings and introduce characters and stories of their own. This is a great opportunity for writers to reach new readers, and readers to discover authors new to them.
Take a chance and read all of them. They’re on Amazon and available on Kindle Unlimited.
Please join us for the FB party from 4-9pm CST Jan 11th and meet the authors, play some games and have fun!
Books in this release:
Texas Marine Mayhem – Cynthia D’Alba – http://amzn.to/2qUJg44
Moving Target – Regan Black – http://amzn.to/2D1Hxzq
Falling for her Bodyguard – Christine Glover – http://amzn.to/2EvDdoz
Rescuing Reya – Tiffani Lynn – http://amzn.to/2EsHEAw
Winter Flame – Aliyah Burke – http://amzn.to/2Dk7d7a
Conrad – Anne L Parks – http://amzn.to/2AOCBrA
Midnight Ranger – Kris Norris – http://amzn.to/2FohLD7
Chasing Katie – Heather Long – http://amzn.to/2COpcSr
Guardian Ranger – Jesse Jacobson – http://amzn.to/2FnCarT
Wednesday, January 3rd, 2018
Read an excerpt from Lindsay McKenna’s heartwarming Boxcar Christmas! And if you’d like to read the story behind this book, head here: The story behind Boxcar Christmas.
“It wasn’t much to look at. The wooden slats that made up the ancient red caboose were weathered, the boxcar sitting on the edge of a flat yellow grass meadow, backed by thousands of evergreens in western Montana. Early November wind whistled and cut at Jesse Myer’s exposed face. She felt the icy morning coldness seep through her rain dampened olive green Army jacket as she emerged cautiously out of the woods. She had discovered the boxcar while hunting rosehips scattered along the banks of the Bitterroot River. It was a source of protein for her tightened, gnawing stomach in want of food.
The large, oval-shaped meadow bordered the water and the rose hips were a substantial source of food when in the back country. She chewed slowly on another one, knowing it was packed with nutrition. Shivering, she felt hope spike through her as she walked out of the woods that lay west of Hamilton, a small hunting and fishing tourist town. She had followed the river in search of a place to pitch her tent outside the city limits.
Standing on the edge of the meadow, she fully surveyed it. It rained at dusk last night and then snowflakes had fallen thick and fast throughout the nighttime hours, and toward dawn the ground was covered with about six inches of the white stuff. As a gray dawn sluggishly crawled upon the eastern horizon, the flakes had turned into a soft, constant rain once more. Most of the snow had melted as the temperature rose, but patches of white still existed here and there–it was an Indian summer event. Jesse sincerely hoped that it meant warmer weather would come into the area and warm it up for a couple of weeks while she hunted for a place to live.
She’d discovered the ancient Union Pacific caboose at the edge of the meadow by accident. There was no telling how old it was, the slats of tongue-and-grove wood that composed its sides were worn , the paint chipped off but still solidly in place despite the harsh winter weather that it had obviously endured over the years. There were no railroad tracks around from what she could see. The under carriage of the caboose had been removed and it had been set upon a rectangular concrete slab, reminding her of the tiny house craze sweeping through her Millennial generation.
Her gaze absorbed the forty-foot long boxcar and she could see that at one time, it had been well cared for. But now, it looked utterly abandoned, the paint dull and peeling off the sturdy oak staves beneath it. Someone had brought this caboose out here. Was it someone who lived in Hamilton? Maybe the owner of this plot of land used it as a cabin to hunt and fish on weekends? Jesse had no idea, but there it was. Maybe it could be a possible home for her instead of the tent she had strapped to the huge knapsack she carried on her back. She wanted to make sure no one was living in it presently and thought about trespassing to find out–even though it went against her grain. Jesse couldn’t explain the allure to do just that.
She called out several times, her voice echoing around the meadow. There was no response or movement from inside the boxcar. The four windows along the meadow side were dirty, and she longed to clean them. Deciding either no one was home or living in it, she curved her hand around the rusted metal railing at the rear platform of the boxcar and took the first tentative step upward. The ends of each wooden step curved upward from age and now rested precariously on the metal frame beneath each one, the nails pulled out by rain and snow over the years. The step groaned. Not that she weighed that much. In the Army, she had been a hundred and sixty pounds; but three months ago, when she received an honorable medical discharge at the end of eight years of service, she had slowly lost at least twenty-five pounds due lack of appetite and no money to buy food. Her Army jacket, the only reminder of her life since age eighteen, hung loosely on her frame.
Her gloves were threadbare, her fingertips numb. She hauled herself up the rest of the creaking wooden steps and leaned forward, cupping her hands around her eyes and peering through the dirty glass of the door to see what was inside the caboose. It was a possible place to live but she had no money for a room rental. She’d just gotten a job at Katie’s Koffee Bean in Hamilton as a dish washer. But it was part time and Jesse had no money yet to rent a room in town, much less an apartment. She had lived in her tent since leaving the Army and was prepared to do it now, but maybe her luck was about to change.
Get your copy here!
Wednesday, December 27th, 2017
When I was six years old, 1950, we lived on an island in the middle of the mighty Snake River near Ontario, Oregon. At six, I was going to the first grade. But there was a huge hurdle I had to walk every day to go meet the school bus. There was a huge train 3-span bridge stretching across the Snake River. And I had to walk it.
I don’t know if you can imagine this but my Scorpio mother taught me how to walk across it BY MYSELF after she showed me how to do it. There was a big problem: I was dizzied by the brownish/green water far below me if I looked down. And I’d lose my balance. The chances of me falling off the bridge were very real. Consequently, I learned to walk those trestles above the water WITHOUT LOOKING DOWN, which increased exponentially, my miscalculating and stumbling and thereby, pitching off the bridge, falling into the water and drowning. Even at five, I understand all of that! In 1950, there were no safeguards on bridges for anyone, much less a 5-year-old little girl.
My mother worked, so she too had to walk across that bridge twice a day, too. She would park our car on the bank, near the bridge, and walk across to our home on that island. She taught me that if a train came? I was to lay down in the middle of the tracks, flatten out and keep my arms and legs within the rails while the train passed above me. That way, I’d survive. Otherwise, I wouldn’t.
Now, it’s 2017. Can you imagine ANY mother doing that nowadays with a 5-year-old, much less a child of any age under 18? I’m sure you wouldn’t. She did NOT accompany me across the bridge after that—I was on my own. She was already at work and couldn’t do it even though she wanted too. My stepfather was too injured from the war to do much walking, so that was out, too. BUT….we had Blackie, an older Border Collie, who we found on the island when we moved into the house. He adopted us.
And he would accompany me to the bridge, stand watch, but not go across it because he was frightened of it, too. So was I. My greatest fear was not hearing a train coming behind me and then having to do my safety thing to survive it. That scared me more than walking across the three-span bridge. Blackie would then meet me in the afternoon when the school bus dropped me off and I had to walk the bridge to get back home.
I loved that dog with my life. He sensed how frightened I was of that bridge, sensing that if I looked down, I’d get dizzy, lose my balance and fall in and drown in the Snake River. He was my guardian.
I wanted to write a book about a Border Collie based upon my childhood experiences with Blackie. I wanted to honor him and his breed. So, there’s lots of wonderful emotions I was able to write into BOXCAR CHRISTMAS and I know my readers will feel it as they read Freya’s story of survival. And how she helped her 2 humans immensely and in important ways after they rescued her.
I went through a LOT of stock photos to find Blackie. I wasn’t sure I would, but as luck would have it, I did. And now the Border Collie on the book’s cover looks EXACTLY like my beloved Blackie. Every time I see that cover, I smile and my heart expands with love for my guardian angel dog who met me every day for a year when I had to walk that train bridge over the Snake River ;-).
One train car. Two lost souls. Five adorable puppies.
Travis Ramsey is back in Hamilton, Montana, after 10 years serving as a Delta Force operator in Afghanistan. Now responsible for his dad’s fishing guide business, Travis has to deal with his increasingly distant and difficult father, and guilt over his brother’s death. His life takes a turn for the better when he meets Army vet Jesse Myers. Jesse is taken with his grandparent’s quirky boxcar cabin and wants to rent it. Taken by her beauty, and the familiar haunted look in her eyes, he makes her a deal. He will rent the boxcar to her for free in return for her help in making renovations.
Get your copy here!
Friday, November 24th, 2017
I lived in a caboose with my family while growing up in Blackfoot, Idaho. And because of that experience, I wanted to write an emotional and heartwarming Christmas story about a very happy time I had living in it. Boxcar Christmas was born!
If you love romance, dogs and puppies? Cozy up with a cup of hot chocolate and enjoy Travis and Jesse’s story!
Pre-order: right now!
Release date: January 1, 2017
One train car. Two lost souls. Five adorable puppies.
Travis Ramsey is back in Hamilton, Montana, after 10 years serving as a Delta Force operator in Afghanistan. Now responsible for his dad’s fishing guide business, Travis has to deal with his increasingly distant and difficult father, and guilt over his brother’s death. His life takes a turn for the better when he meets Army vet Jesse Myers. Jesse is taken with his grandparent’s quirky boxcar cabin and wants to rent it. Taken by her beauty—and the familiar haunted look in her eyes—he makes her a deal. He will rent the boxcar to her for free in return for her help in making renovations.
Working on the train car, Travis and Jesse grow closer. But when Jesse rescues a desperate Border Collie and her five adorable puppies, something unexpected happens. A Christmas miracle neither saw coming.