Here’s wishing everyone a happy and healthy New Year.
Sometimes the smallest things can remind us of someone we love and lost.
Every morning, I take the littles to school. For anyone who hasn’t dropped off a kid at elementary school lately, let me tell you, the efficiency would make Disney World proud. Ten cars at a time pull up to one of three drop-off points where you’re met by someone (usually a teacher, volunteer, or older kid) who opens your car door and helps the children out. Then you drive away and the next ten cars pull up. It’s really great.
Well . . .
For the last week, since it’s been so cold (don’t all my northeastern and Canadian friends laugh, 40 is cold in Texas), we’ve been met by dads. Yep. Dads. Some wearing “great dad” t-shirts over their coats or sporting “great dad” buttons. They are friendly and helpful, and I drive away with tears in my eyes every morning. Heck, I’m crying now just writing this.
You see, this is something my dad would have done – either for us kids or his grandkids. He was a great dad, and he’s been gone a while and usually . . . well, we all get on with our lives. But for some reason, this makes me think of him every single morning. We miss you dad.
So, now that I’m all bleary-eyed, what brings back memories of someone you’ve lost?
Tell me what’s on your eReader for a chance to win an Amazon Gift Card.
Just post what you’re reading below during the month of December, and if I pick your recommendation, I’ll send you the gift certificate. IOW, convince me that what you’re reading is great. That easy. So give yourself something for the holidays.
P.S. If I get 25 comments, I’ll up the gift certificate to $25.
As for what I’m reading . . .
If you’ve been following me for, well like, five minutes, you know that one of my all-time favorite romance authors is Judith Arnold. Her books are consistently charming, well written, and populated with great characters.
So, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that I’m currently in the middle of yet another delightful Judith Arnold book: Father Christmas. This is the second in the Daddy School books, and once again, I’m loving it. It’s the perfect book for the holidays.
Oh, and did I mention it’s on sale for .99. Just click on the cover.
Enjoy the season and don’t forget to let me know what you’re reading.
I just finished The Raven Boys, book one in Maggie Stiefvater’s Raven Cycle series. Wow!
My good friend, Kathleen, recommended it, and I don’t think I’ve ever read one of her recommendations that I didn’t love. (She also introduced me to The Hunger Games, way before the movies came out.)
Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her. His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.
But Gansey is different. He has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little.
For as long as she can remember, Blue has been told by her psychic family that she will kill her true love. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.
So, what did I love about it? It has both a great story and great writing, but the best part is the characters. They are multi-dimensional and so different. Loved, loved, loved it!
I’ve been tempted more than once to write a character into one of my books who needs to be tortured or knocked off. Admit it, we all have a person or two who’s crossed our path that we’d really like to . . . well, kill off in a book. So far, I’ve managed to resist the urge.
However, I’ve been getting some lovely reviews on Keeping Katie lately, and one in particular reminded me of a character that was modeled after a real person. Here’s the review:
Personally I really liked this story. The main characters, Maura, Katie and Alan. There were also interesting secondary people too. Aunt Rita was such a loving, giving person and she just drew both Katie and Maura into her family. The story was kept my attention and there were several other subplots to the story swirling around too. It was an emotional . . . with good people who were sure they were right. Black and white is what they saw, but the things that are going on cause them to begin to question just how true that was. Maura’s odd relationship with her father also added something to the story. Alan was a determined kind of guy, who I liked. He was also a strong but tender man at times. The romance was good, with Alan’s perception on how to handle Maura often hitting its mark. Maura was often torn about her decision to run with Katie and lying to people. But her main focus is to protect Katie.
I liked the dual P.O.V.’s from both Maura and Alan.
Nice, right? But the part that warmed my heart was the sentence about Aunt Rita. “Aunt Rita was such a loving, giving person and she just drew both Katie and Maura into her family.”
In the book, Aunt Rita was modeled and named after my mother-in-law, who was one of the best, kind-hearted women I’ve ever known. We lost her last year, but this review reminded me that she’ll always be with us.
So, the review made me happy, in more ways the one. And how fitting that it was posted on Mother’s Day.
For a limited time, get a copy of KEEPING KATIE free from AMAZON. Just click on the banner below to go to Amazon.
I just finished Wild Thing, the third book in Judith Arnold’s delightful series, The Magic Jukebox. I’ve enjoyed all three books, but Wild Thing may just be my favorite. If you’re looking for a smart, sexy, feel-good read that will make you smile, check out this series. I’d read them in order – but that’s just me.
Monica Reinhart is a good girl. A hometown girl. After college, she returned to Brogan’s Point to help run the family business, an oceanfront inn. She’s never done a wild thing in her life. When Ty Cronin sails into town, his wildness intrigues her. When the jukebox plays “Wild Thing,” that wildness infects her, and soon she finds herself doing things she never would have imagined. But Ty could be big trouble. She hardly knows him. She mustn’t trust him. Yet once she’s taken a walk on the wild side with him, how can she go back to being a good hometown girl?
The Magic Jukebox sits in the Faulk Street Tavern in the quiet seaside town of Brogan’s Point, Massachusetts. No one knows what classic rock songs will come out of the jukebox when a coin is inserted, but every now and then, the jukebox will play a song that casts a spell on two bar patrons—a song that will change their lives and open their hearts to love.
When I started writing romance, I never planned to write about mothers. It was only after I’d published quite a few books that I realized they weren’t just about romantic love; they were about families. Mothers. Fathers. Children. And all the wonderful messiness of family. (Even my suspense novels include children.) At first, that realization surprised me, but it probably shouldn’t have. I come from a large family—I was one of six kids—with an even larger extended family. Continue reading
Thanks to everyone who downloaded Keeping Katie during my five-day free promo event. This was the first time I’ve done any promotion for my books, and it was a lot of fun.
If you read Keeping Katie, I hope you’ll take the time to write a brief review on Amazon to help spread the word. And, of course, don’t forget there are two other books in the series, Once a Wife and Where the Heart Is.
Exclusively from Amazon — FREE for a limited time.
Maura Anderson was out of options.
Her adopted daughter, three-year-old Katie, is her entire world, and no heartless legal system was going to take her baby away. She did what any mother would do. She grabbed Katie and ran—even if it meant breaking the law.
Sheriff Alan Parks believes in the law, following it and enforcing it to the letter. Then Maura Anderson shows up in his small, quiet town, and he knows she’s running from something. At first, he assumes she’s running from someone – an ex-husband or boyfriend – but when she won’t confide in him he starts wondering. Who is this woman who’s captured his heart, and what or who is she afraid? When he finds the answers, however, a part of him wishes he’d never asked the question. Because how can he help her when he represented what she’s fleeing . . . the law.
From Pat . . .
I hope you’ll enjoy this first installment in my A Mother’s Heart series — a heart-warming collection of small-town romances.
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