Friday, April 13, 2018

Oath Forger Series by Nia Mars

Join me in welcoming author Nia Mars to my blog with her Oath Forger series. Nia has just introduced me to a new genre - Reverse Harem Sci-fi romance. I'm super interested to know what it's all about! She also has a fantastic giveaway that you need to check out. Please welcome Nia Mars!


Oath Forger #5
The Oath Forger Series - A Reverse Harem Sci-fi Romance 
By Nia Mars

Nia has a fantastic giveaway on her website for the books on your Amazon wishlist up to $100. Go here to learn more https://niamars.com/wishlist-giveaway

Each book in the series is featured for three days. Be sure to follow along to read more about each book. You may find the tour stops here About the Book: Thank you for sticking with Ava and her Five and being part of the adventure!

You are cordially invited to Merim to celebrate Earth officially becoming a Federation planet.

See you at the Oath Forger's palace!


Book Links:



Goodreads Series Link: https://www.goodreads.com/series/226815-oath-forger

 

Other Books in the Series:


Oath Forger #2 Amazon Buy Link


Oath Forger #3 Amazon Buy Link


Oath Forger #4 Amazon Buy Link



About Nia Mars:
ABOUT ME: Books. Reading. Writing. Playing with the dog. That's my life, in a nutshell. I love discovering new authors and new trends. Hello Reverse Harem novels!!!! Where have you been all my life? I love everything sci-fi, paranormal, and fantasy. I eat enough chocolate that at this point, I'm probably made of chocolate. OK, chocolate and coffee.

WHAT'S NEW: I've just published OATH FORGER, a soon-to-be bestselling, post-apocalyptic, reverse harem, sci-fi romance serial. Ha! Say that three times fast. :)

WHAT ELSE: If you'd rather try a standalone sci-fi romance from me, grab WARLORD. And make sure you don't sit near anything flammable while reading it. Because it's HOT. Whatever level of heat you're thinking right now? Double it. (Not recommended if you don't have AC, or at least a ceiling fan.) You've been warned.

IF YOU'RE LOOKING FOR A DRAGON: Check out DRAGON LORD, my upcoming dragon-shifter romance. And be prepared to lose your heart to a sexy, grumpy dragon. The best kind!

MY WISH LIST: (In case my fairy grandmother is reading this.)

1. For the OATH FORGER series to find readers who love these stories as much as I do.

2. Finishing my Master's Degree in (what else) Writing Creative Fiction. (When I'm not writing books, I'm doing homework.)

WARRANTY: Your satisfaction is very important to me. If you have a complaint, please write it on a box of 50-piece Assorted Godiva Chocolate Truffles, and mail it to my office. I promise to personally see to all complaints.

Social Links:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/niamarsauthor Twitter: @niamars_author

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

#NewRelease from Adriana Kraft

I'm very happy to welcome Adriana Kraft to my blog today. This prolific husband/wife writing team has another new release, and I'm happy to let readers know about it. Here's Adriana to tell us about VEGAS GAMBLER!



Vegas Gambler Meghan’s Playhouse Series By Adriana Kraft


Vegas Gambler will be on tour from March 5 through April 5, and we’re giving away one free download from the Publisher’s Website to each of two winners. Winners may select from books One through Four in our Meghan’s Playhouse Series. You can find all series books at this link: http://www.extasybooks.com/meghan-s-playhouse/. Remember you may increase your chances of winning by visiting the other tour stops. You may find those locations here



About the Book: 

He’s fifty-one, they’re in their twenties. Can Jack Hawthorne keep up with two women? How will he protect his heart?

Fresh with success from a recent stint in a musical on the Las Vegas Strip, Meghan Keenan takes some time off to play with her current flame, Jack Hawthorne, professional poker player. She’s delighted to add her petite masseuse Tia Minh to the mix and even more thrilled when she learns Tia’s relationship with her boyfriend Tony Sanders is on the skids. It’s the perfect challenge!

Tia has different ideas – she thinks Tony would be perfect for Meg, and she conspires to throw them together any way she can.

Ever the gambler, Jack catches on to her game quickly and keeps the ruse going behind Meg’s back. Who knew his heart was up for grabs?

This is a Contemporary Erotic Romance. Buy Links: Amazon | eXtasy Books


Excerpt: 

Jack cocked his head to the side. “You sure you won’t stay beyond the summer?”

Meg shook her head. They’d been over this ground before. “You know I need to get back to New York. I need to get on with my life.”

“Sorry I’m such a drag on you.” He gave her a wicked smile. “And you always say my age doesn’t matter.”

“Fifty-one doesn’t make you ancient.”

“I have my days,” Jack said, flipping over a card. “But I know what we have is transitory. Don’t worry about me getting carried away.” He smirked. “But you have been a breath of fresh air for me.”

“Cripes, the way you hang out around poker tables, anyone would provide a breath of fresh air.” Meg smiled and purposely softened her tone. “And you’ve been very good for me, too. I don’t know how I would’ve made it through the hectic pace of the last six months without your steady influence. You’ve always been there, and with few demands.”

“Perhaps,” Jack began wistfully, “I should’ve been more demanding.” He must’ve seen her nostrils flare, because he lifted a hand, forestalling her response. “You’ve renewed my faith in life.” He grinned devilishly. “Even in love.”



About the Author: 


Winner of the 2014 Bisexual Book Award for erotic fiction, author Adriana Kraft is a married couple writing Sizzling Romantic Suspense and Erotic Romance for Two, Three, or More.

One man, one woman, danger and intrigue – always a happy ending, but oh, what a ride! Readers can count on our Romantic Suspense line for gutsy characters, hot sex, and breathtaking intimacy as our hero and heroine battle outer threats and inner demons to stay alive and fall in love.

A man, a woman (or two), or another man, threesomes, foursomes—what’s your fantasy? We write our Erotic Romance stories to entertain, of course, but most of all we write them because we believe in happy endings for all who fall in love, whatever their gender, sexual orientation or numerical combination. Here you’ll find multiple partners, three-way, four-way and more, swing lifestyle, lesbian, bisexual, ménage and polyamory, in both contemporary and paranormal settings.

Together we have published over thirty-five romance novels and novellas to outstanding reviews. We love hearing from readers at adrianakraft99@yahoo.com, and here is our website:

When It’s Time to Heat Things Up http://adrianakraft.com

Author Links:



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, April 2, 2018

Amber Daulton: Cover Reveal - ARRESTING MASON

I'm participating in fellow Wild Rose Press author Amber Daulton's cover reveal for ARRESTING MASON. Check it out!



Arresting Mason Series: Arresting Onyx (book 1) By Amber Daulton

About the Book:
Their chance encounter resulted in a steamy affair, but will his former gang and a parole officer tear them apart? 

Once you’re in a prison gang, you’re in it for life. That’s what Mason Harding thought until the boss accepted his resignation. After the State releases him on parole, a sexy divorcée behind the wheel of a car almost ends his life quicker than a shank. His chance encounter with Mia Eddison results in a night of passion, but her brother—his parole officer—catches them together and doesn’t approve.

Mia falls hard for the cocky ex-con, but not because of his chiseled body. She vows to break through his walls and discover his secrets, but never expects those secrets to threaten her life.

When members of an organized crime ring kidnap Mia to force Mason’s return to the gang, he goes up against an old friend to save the woman he loves. Will his sacrifice be enough or will everything fall apart in a blaze of gunfire?

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Release Date: April 30th, 2018
Print ISBN: 978-1-5092-2007-6
Digital ISBN: 978-1-5092-2008-3
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Length: 80k
Heat Rating: Spicy/Hot

Buy Links: 

The Wild Rose Press store – http://bit.ly/2FSVvBa
Barnes and Noble – TBA
Kobo – TBA

Excerpt:

They reached her store and he stared at her car parked by the curb. “Harper doesn’t know where you live or anything about you. That means you’re safe for now, but he’ll probably search this area to find us. Stay cautious, okay? Drive your car from now on. Don’t walk anywhere.”

“Why are you avoiding my questions? You can tell me anything.”

“Not this. If you trust me, don’t ask those kinds of questions.” He tightened his fingers around her forearm as she tried to jerk free from his grip. “Listen to me, damn it. You mean a lot to me, but I can’t tell you this. At least not right now. That’s nothing against you. It’s all on me. I just need time to take care of this problem. Okay? I’m fucking stressed, in a shitload of pain, and I don’t need you to hound my ass.” He dropped his hand from her arm and scowled as though he just noticed the dirt and blood on his knuckles. “I’d like to go upstairs to clean up before you take me home. I don’t want Alan to know what happened.”

Mia dug through her purse with shaky hands, so angry she didn’t trust herself to speak.

He took the keys from her before the little pieces of metal slipped between her fingers, and he hugged her despite the grime on his skin and clothes.

Tears clogged her throat. Her mind screamed at her to push away from him, but the strength in his arms enveloped her and stole her will. His heartbeat soothed hers, and she no longer cared about his lies or if filth caked him.

At least not at the moment.

“I never meant for this to happen, Mia. I will fix this.”

“I know, but at what cost?” She pried her face from his chest to stare up at him. “You’re nothing if not determined, but I’m scared and confused. You have answers to my questions, but I won’t hound you for them as you so eloquently stated. I just thought we got past this. I thought you knew I would never insult or condemn you for whatever it is you did.”

“And I thought you knew not to push me too fucking hard.” His deep voice sent shivers of unease down her spine. “I have to keep certain parts of my past to myself.”

“Whatever.” Mia finally pushed against his chest for freedom and stomped to the stairwell door.


About the Author:

Writing is the fruit of happiness.

Amber Daulton lives her life by that one belief even though she normally isn’t so Zen.

As a fan of contemporary, paranormal, and historical romance novels alike, she can’t get enough of feisty heroines and alpha heroes. Her mind is a wonderland of adventure, laughter, and awesome ways of kicking a guy when he’s down. She probably wouldn’t be too sane without her computer and notebooks. After all, what’s a girl to do when people are jabbering away in her head and it’s hard to shut them up? Write! Nothing else works.

Social Media Links:
Facebook Author Page – www.facebook.com/amber.daulton.author
Amazon Author Page  http://amzn.to/14JoZff 

Friday, March 30, 2018

Jennifer Wilck Loves Secondary Characters!

I love secondary characters, and I've found a kindred spirit in fellow Wild Rose Press Author Jennifer Wilck. Turns out Jennifer loves secondary characters as much as I do! Here she is to tell us all about it. Take it away, Jennifer!



I love secondary characters. They help to flesh out the hero and heroine and they often take on a mind of their own. Additionally, because I write Jewish characters, and many of my readers may not be familiar with some terms or customs that I reference, I also use secondary characters to explain things. Most often, it’s with a child, because it’s perfectly believable for a child to ask a question. It’s not always believable for an adult who presumably has been doing something their whole lives to suddenly want to know what it is that they’re doing (CSI, anyone?).

In Five Minutes to Love, however, I used my hero’s mother. Almost everyone knows the stereotypes of Jewish mothers. They want their child to settle down with a “nice Jewish boy or girl” and are always trying to feed people. In Hollywood, they are often portrayed as complaining a lot and shopping. I tried to avoid the stereotype, especially the complaints and the shopping, and while fleshing her out, she took on a mind of her own.

Karen was a blast to write. She became the conscience of the book. If Jacob was studying too hard, she made sure he took time out for a break, especially if that break was to visit her. On the flipside, she reminded him to focus on his law school needs and his future career, which is a main source of conflict in the book. She has a voice and she’s not afraid to use it, calling Jacob out when he’s done something he shouldn’t have. She’s meddlesome, but useful. She also helped create minor conflicts that Aviva, the heroine, was easily able to overcome, thereby showing Jacob what a great woman she was. For example, Karen has been known to be hard on Jacob’s past girlfriends. She never thought they were good enough for him. When Karen invites Aviva and Jacob to Shabbat dinner, Jacob is terrified Aviva will fall into any one of Karen’s “traps.” But Aviva charms Karen from the beginning. When Karen makes brisket for their dinner, Aviva loves it and knowing it’s Jacob’s favorite, asks for the recipe. Jacob is horrified, because Karen never shares recipes with his girlfriends. But not only does Karen offer to share it, she offers to teach her how to make it. By the end of the evening, Karen and Aviva are getting along wonderfully, and Jacob is convinced that Aviva is much stronger than he’s given her credit for being. When Jacob and Aviva reach their “black moment,” it’s Karen who is able to provide some perspective to Jacob, helping him to understand how his own actions have led them to this point, and illuminating the different paths he can take in the future.

I don’t think I’ve ever had as much fun with a secondary character as I have had with Karen, and I hope you enjoy her as much as I did.

Blurb:
Aviva Shulman has had enough of the dating scene. Her father valued his high-powered career over his wife and family. She wants something more, someone who values her. But her roommates are determined to find her the perfect match.
Jacob Black doesn't have time for relationships. A third-year law student, he's focused on studying and getting a high-paying job with a top-notch law firm. But his overbearing mother wants him to find someone and settle down.
Their paths cross at a speed dating event and sparks fly. But is five minutes long enough to determine a future together?

Excerpt:

Aviva sat in the Prudential Center with Jacob’s mother and the families of the other law school graduates as the names were called. After quizzing Aviva on her recovery from the accident, her ability to take time off for Jacob’s graduation, and complimenting her on her dress, his mother kvelled next to her about Jacob. Aviva couldn’t blame her. There was something awe-inspiring about watching these students reach their goal. Knowing how much effort Jacob put into this made it more amazing.

Especially when you considered she’d almost messed everything up for him. She shook her head to rid herself of the thought, wiping a tear from her eye.

Karen leaned over. “My son the lawyer.” She beamed with pride. “You know what makes me even prouder of him?”

Aviva shook her head.

“Because for all the nagging I do about making time to see me and prioritizing things in life, he manages to balance everything and still do well.”

Aviva tried not to show her reaction to Karen’s words. Was this woman psychic? If she was, there could be definite problems down the road—a psychic mother-in-law? Holy cow.

“Don’t look surprised, sweetheart.” Karen patted her leg. “You think I don’t worry about his finding time for life in his life? I do. All the time. But look at how well he did after your accident.”

Aviva shook her head. “I could have messed everything up for him.” Other audience members turned to look at her. She lowered her voice. “I feel guilty,” she whispered.

“Nonsense. You didn’t mess anything up. If you think he hasn’t spent forever studying, you’re crazy. He spends so much time doing it, if he misses a day or two, he’d still be fine. He was. Because he’s there.”

Buy Links:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Five-Minutes-Love-Serendipity-Book-ebook/dp/B079WMLNJB

Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/five-minutes-to-love-jennifer-wilck/1128011304?ean=2940158814495

The Wild Rose Press: https://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/all-titles/5742-five-minutes-to-love.html?search_query=jennifer+wilck&results=6


Author Bio:

Jennifer started telling herself stories as a little girl when she couldn’t fall asleep at night. Pretty soon, her head was filled with these stories and the characters that populated them. Even as an adult, she thinks about the characters and stories at night before she falls asleep or walking the dog. Eventually, she started writing them down. Her favorite stories to write are those with smart, sassy, independent heroines; handsome, strong and slightly vulnerable heroes; and her stories always end with happily ever after.

In the real world, she’s the mother of two amazing daughters and wife of one of the smartest men she knows. When she’s not writing, she loves to laugh with her family and friends, is a pro at finding whatever her kids lost in plain sight, and spends way too much time closing doors that should never have been left open in the first place. She believes humor is the only way to get through the day and does not believe in sharing her chocolate.

She writes contemporary romance, some of which are mainstream and some of which involve Jewish characters. She’s published with The Wild Rose Press and all her books are available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble.



Jennifer's Social Media Links:

Website: http://www.jenniferwilck.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Jennifer-Wilck-201342863240160/

Facebook Readers Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/2055470311366345/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JWilck

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/authorjenniferwilck/

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/jennifer-wilck

Thursday, March 29, 2018

#RomanceBooks #EggcerptExchange: Stealing the Billionaire’s Heart

Today is the last day of our Eggcerpt Exchange. My final guest is Robin Michaela, and she's here with her contribution to a boxed set called The Billionaire's Club: A Limited Edition Collection of Billionaire Romance. Here's Robin to tell us about her story!


I'm Robin Michaela and I’m thrilled to be one of the 12 authors in The Billionaire's Club multi-author boxed set! The Billionaire’s Club is all about high stakes, risk takers, and power-wielding billionaires. This set will take you on a ride of romance, seduction, and games of wealth and fortune. Find out what happens when these powerful men meet their match.

Part of my book, Stealing the Billionaire’s Heart, takes place in Venice. In one scene, Lyra and Nicolas take a dreamy gondola ride to a romantic restaurant overlooking a tiny canal. While they’re dining, their gondola gets caught up in a traffic jam of sorts, plugging the canal entrance and forcing them to walk back to Nick’s palazzo.

When my husband and I visited Venice a few years ago, I was fascinated with a small corner of a canal off St. Mark’s Square. It was filled to overflowing with at least a dozen gondolas (and a lot of noise!) as the gondoliers jockeyed for prime positions to snag customers. That memory inspired Lyra and Nick’s romantic evening. I hope you enjoy it!

BLURB:
Lyra Bretton is stunned when she’s abandoned at the altar. Figuring the best way to get over one man is to get under another one, she combs the luxurious Las Vegas resort where she was to be married, intent on spending her almost-wedding night with the sexiest man she can find.
Billionaire womanizer, Nicolas Sebastian, is tempted by the beautiful bride’s shocking proposal. The workaholic COO of the family hotel chain can’t deny his attraction to the woman who should be weeping in her room instead of shredding her wedding gown in his lounge. Their chemistry is explosive, but Nicolas has been burned before. He’ll never commit his heart because he learned years ago that women are only interested in his wallet.
Their Vegas fling soon turns into something neither of them can control. But, when they travel to his lavish property in Italy, money goes missing and expensive jewelry turns up in Lyra’s possession, putting their fragile future in jeopardy. Unless they can find a way to trust again, they risk losing each other forever.

EXCERPT:

As Nicolas stood in the shadows, Lyra shifted and caught sight of him. When she did, she beamed and held out her hand. “Come here, Nick. You’re missing all the fun.”

“What’s up?”

“Well…I’m hoping you will be, lover…and very soon.” She wet her lips and squeezed his hand.  “But I was referring to the Gondola Wars going on down there.” Gesturing toward the canal, she raised her wine glass and saluted the gondoliers on the canal below.

He grinned and slid into his chair, then leaned over to look below. Two boats were cruising the tiny canal, side-by-side. They’d apparently gotten stuck together in the narrows, but that didn’t deter the gondoliers. Each was pushing and prodding the other’s boat in an attempt to get free. Their passengers clung to each other as the gondolas rocked in their wake. While Nicolas watched, their own gondola got caught in the altercation. Their gondolier had untied his boat and drifted away from the other vessels, but ended up being just wide enough to snugly jam all three boats together, blocking the entrance to the canal.

“Looks like we’re walking home,” Nicolas commented.

“I hope not. I have no idea where we are. This city is like a maze.”

“No worries, I know exactly where the palazzo is.” He winked at her. “Stick with me, kid, I’ll get you places.”

Lyra squinted at him. “Isn’t that an old joke? I don’t remember the setup, though.”

“What did the stamp say to the envelope?”

Lyra giggled. “Oh…stick with me…I get it.”

By the time they finished their meal, she was grateful for the chance to walk off some of their food. They were holding hands, strolling the dark cobblestone streets, and stopping about every fifty feet to kiss.

“It’s a good thing I don’t live here,” she told Nicolas. “I’d be on a permanent diet. I adore pasta.”

“The meal was superb,” he agreed, “but you wouldn’t need to diet if you lived in Venice.”

“Why not?”

He stopped as they reached the crest of the small bridge they were crossing, then cupped the back of her head and drew her into a leisurely kiss that had her pulse thrumming. “Because I can think of plenty of ways to work it off. Say, by chasing you around the bedroom every night.”

“What makes you think I’d run?” She backed him against the time-worn limestone railing and leaned into him, grinding her pelvis against his erection. “I want you, Nick.”

“Hell, Lyra, you’re driving me crazy,” he said as his mouth descended over hers.

When they came up for air, his gaze roamed hungrily over her face. “If I didn’t think I’d get arrested, I’d hike up that pretty skirt of yours and take you right here on the bridge.”

“I’m not wearing panties, so if I didn’t think you’d be arrested, I’d probably let you do it.”

BUY LINK: 

The Billionaire's Club releases on May 29, 2018. PREORDER NOW for just $0.99!

BIO:



Robin Michaela writes heartfelt, small town contemporary romances in all levels of heat, from sweet to steamy. Her stories combine family, pets, hope and friendship – all the elements that bring her readers emotional and enduring love stories.

Author Links:

Website: https://robinmichaela.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/robinsromances

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RobinMichaelaRomances/

Sign up for Robin's Newsletter

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

TRUTH AND SOLACE releases today!


The third and final book in my Love at Solace Lake series, TRUTH AND SOLACE, releases today. I can't wait for readers to read the conclusion of the Lindquist sisters' story. Each novel is a complete love story with a happy ending, but there's a mystery running through the series that only is answered with book three. So I recommend reading the books in order. I hope readers find the answers revealed in TRUTH AND SOLACE to be satisfying. Can't wait to hear reader reaction!

One more time, here's the series blurb:

Love is worth the risk…

When their grandfather dies, the Lindquist sisters, Harper, Scarlet and Maggie, inherit the northern Minnesota fishing lodge that had been in their family for three generations. The inheritance is bittersweet. They were raised at the lodge by their grandparents. The natural beauty of the place hasn’t changed, but the building itself is crumbling and desperately in need of repair. The lodge also reminds them of what they lost. Twenty-two years previously, their parents died there in what was ruled a murder/suicide.

 As the sisters struggle to breathe new life into the failing lodge, old fears and questions rise to the surface even as new love presents itself. Why did their father murder their mother? What truths did their grandparents keep from them? The sisters must fight to keep the wounds of the past from putting their futures, and their fledgling relationships, in jeopardy.


Blurb for TRUTH AND SOLACE:

The truth could destroy them. Or set them free.

Maggie Lindquist left Solace Lake determined never to return. Circumstances have pulled her back and she’s helping to restore her family’s dilapidated fishing lodge. When she agreed to the plan she didn’t expect to have to work side by side with the man who abandoned her ten years earlier. She didn’t expect to like him, or want him ever again. But can she trust him as she once did?

Luke Carlsson rushes home to tend to his ailing mother. Her lengthy illness means he needs to stay, at least temporarily. And to stay, he needs to work. Solace Lake Lodge offers him a job and an opportunity to work with the woman he’s never stopped loving. But the restoration is unleashing secrets hidden for decades and no one is left unscathed. Especially not Maggie and Luke, whose love needs to be resilient enough to forgive, and strong enough to build a future together.

Excerpt:
A memory flashed through her mind. Luke driving an ancient, mostly rusty Ford pickup to the lodge that summer. He’d worked odd jobs summers and after school for three years to buy it and keep it running. The old Ford had been his pride and joy. 
Every chance they got, they’d sneak off in the Ford and park somewhere secluded. They’d been in that truck the first time Luke had kissed her. He’d pulled her toward him and covered her mouth with his, and she’d sworn she’d heard angels singing. And then, her body had gone up in flames in a very unangel-like way. As the summer went on, they’d grown bolder in their explorations. Harper had given her ‘the lecture’ on sex, but she hadn’t prepared her for the way her body would react to Luke’s kisses, or his touch. Like the way her nipples would harden as he caressed her breasts, and the way her panties would dampen. And when he’d reached inside her panties and inserted a finger inside her—
“Are you ready?” 
Maggie stared at Luke in incomprehension. And then the present returned with forceful fury. Heat infused her cold cheeks. They were on their way to see his sick mother. Her thoughts shamed her. 
She reminded herself that Luke had left her once and would do so again. The heat and her vivid memory dissipated.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

ONEY, MY ESCAPE FROM SLAVERY #EggcerptExcha


My Eggcerpt Exchange guests today are Diana Rubino and Piper Huguley with a true story of bravery. Welcome! 

ONEY, MY ESCAPE FROM SLAVERY
by Diana Rubino and Piper Huguley

Oney’s Story…

Teenaged Oney Judge was Martha Washington’s ‘favorite servant.’ Oney and Martha both longed for freedom, but in very different ways. Martha hated being confined to the president’s house, forced to entertain politicians and foreign diplomats. Oney hated being someone else’s property, forced to do labor and wait on her owners day and night.

After President Washington served one term as president, he wrote his farewell speech. He and Martha started packing for their retirement at Mount Vernon, but it was not meant to be. He was elected again—unanimously. He did not want to serve another term, but gave in under pressure.

Martha had no say in it whatsoever. But as she hosted her tea parties and levees, she became close friends with several forward-thinking women, such as Abigail Adams and Judith Murray, feminists of the time. Their radical ideas rubbed off on Martha—education and job training for women to be self-supporting instead of depending on husbands. By the end of George’s term, she experienced a steep character arc. She even changed her attitude toward slavery. When Oney escaped at age 20, at the end of George’s final term, Martha was very resentful: “She was more like a child to me than a servant.” The Washingtons knew that she’d escaped to Portsmouth, New Hampshire and made several attempts to recapture her. But in a sudden act of lenience, Martha gave up on Oney and let her remain free. During her husband’s presidency, Martha complained, “I am more like a state prisoner”, so perhaps she put herself in Oney’s place and realized she deserved liberty, too.

As our first First Lady, Martha Washington evolved from a  grandmotherly wife and homebody to an outspoken champion of women’s rights. She provided freedom for her slaves at her death.

While living in Portsmouth, Oney married a sailor, Jack Staines, and had three children. She outlived her husband and children, and lived her remaining free life in Greenland, New Hampshire. Somewhat of a local celebrity, she lived in poverty, but the locals supported her and she took in sewing to supplement her meager income. She declared in an 1847 interview, “I am free now and choose to remain so.”


An Excerpt from ONEY, MY ESCAPE FROM SLAVERY

The hour finally came—while they ate dinner.

Nothing heavied my heart—not remorse, not guilt, not sadness upon fleeing my master and mistress. Raw thirst for freedom overcame all that. I walked straight past the Washingtons and out that door. When I shut it, I left them—and my forced bondage— behind me.

I tore through the muddy streets in pouring rain. Gasping for breath, soaked to the skin, my heart slamming in terror, I glanced behind me, again and again. No one pursued me—yet. I dreaded and expected pounding footsteps, a clap on my shoulder. But, I asked myself, who would chase me through the driving rain? No, it is not possible, I affirmed—they didn’t even know I’d left the kitchen.

At the Jones house I slowed and caught my breath. When Absalom opened the door, I staggered inside, laughing, sobbing, gulping for dear life.

I spent the night pacing the attic room, hands clasped. “I beg of you, dear God, walk beside me on this journey. See me through this safe. Don’t let them capture me. I only want to be your servant, no one else’s.”

As daybreak nudged away the darkness, I fell to my knees, weary with fatigue. “Thank you, dear God, for ending my final night of bondage.”


Serendipity at Work

In May 2014, popular romance author Brenda Novak had her annual auction for diabetes—authors donate books, critiques, etc., and people bid on them, similar to Ebay. I donated one of my other books, and I also donated a free manuscript critique. An author named Piper Huguley won the critique auction, but the auction ended and I never heard from her. I thought oh, well, she doesn't want it after all. About 3 months later, she wrote me and sent me her story, A CHAMPION’S HEART, to critique. It's a romance about an African American girl, set in rural Georgia in the 1910s. Very moving and powerful story. I loved it. It was published in 2016 by Liliaceae Publishers.
getBook.at/AChampionsHeart

I'd been wanting to find an African American author to go over my Oney novel, but never looked for anyone. I thought of asking one of my grade school classmates, but just didn't get to it...well, one day I decided to ask Piper.

Right after I asked her, she wrote back and said she'd be happy to help. Then I went on Facebook and saw that Piper just posted that her mother passed away that morning. So I sent her a message of condolence. Then she wrote this back to me:

And I appreciate your kind comments about my mother. You see, I see your request as "heaven sent" for I think I told you about how my mother told me about Oney. I know that she would want me to work on anything, do anything to forward that story. So, even in the midst of a difficult time, I look forward to helping you--something I really didn't expect after you had helped me so much. Thank you for that. 

I don't remember her telling me that her mother told her about Oney. I've heard so many stories about people who pass away, and send 'signs' etc. to their loved ones, this was just too strange to be coincidence. Piper helped me a great deal with Oney’s story and became my co-author. We dedicated the book to her mother.


Purchase ONEY: 
http://getBook.at/ONEY 

About Diana and Piper:

Diana writes about folks who shook things up. Her passion for history and travel has taken her to every locale of her stories, set in Medieval and Renaissance England, Egypt, the Mediterranean, colonial Virginia, New England, and New York. Her urban fantasy romance FAKIN’ IT won a Top Pick award from Romantic Times. She is a member of Romance Writers of America, the Richard III Society and the Aaron Burr Association. When not writing, she runs CostPro, Inc., an engineering business, with her husband Chris. In her spare time, Diana bicycles, golfs, plays her piano and devours books of any genre. She spends as much time as possible just livin' the dream on her beloved Cape Cod.

Piper Huguley is a two-time Golden Heart ®finalist and is the author of the “Home to Milford College” series. The series follows the building of a college from its founding in 1866. Book #1 in the series, The Preacher’s Promise was named a top ten Historical Romance in Publisher’s Weekly by the esteemed historical romance author, Beverly Jenkins and received Honorable Mention in the Writer’s Digest Contest of Self-Published e-books in 2015.

Her new series “Born to Win Men” starts with A Champion’s Heart as Book #1. A Champion’s Heart was named by Sarah MacLean of The Washington Post as a best romance novel selection for December 2016.

She blogs about the history behind her novels at http://piperhuguley.com. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia with her husband and son.


Connect with Diana and Piper:

www.dianarubino.com
https://www.facebook.com/DianaRubinoAuthor/
Twitter: @DianaLRubino

www.piperhuguley.com
https://www.facebook.com/piper.huguley
Twitter: @PiperHuguley