Monday, April 14, 2014

Winner on my Spring Fever Post!


The winner of an ecopy of ALWAYS A BRIDESMAID, the prize I offered on the MFRW Spring Fever Blog Hop is ...

Mary Magdeline!

Congratulations Mary! Enjoy.

Thank you to everyone who entered and thank you to the wonderful staff at Marketing for Romance Writers for setting up the blog hop. Cheers!

Friday, April 11, 2014

It's Spring! - Sort of ‪#‎MFRWhop‬ Contest & Prize




When I was kid growing up on a farm on the Canadian prairies, I knew it was spring when the crocuses bloomed in the pasture. Sometimes, they were so anxious to bloom that they pushed their way through the snow, somehow managing to survive.

I feel a little like that this spring, so anxious for some warm weather that I'm ready to blast through the snow. It's been a very long, long, long winter and I'm ready for it end.

crocus snow photo: Snow Crocus crocus.jpg


Unfortunately, it's going to be a while until I see any crocuses around here. Here's a couple of shots of my yard as of April 2, 2014:

My back yard. My husband used the snow blower to make a path so he could get to the shed, and so the dog could do her business without drowning!


My front yard, looking across the street toward my neighbor's house. Yes, my garbage cans are out there too. You just can't see them because they're in front of the gigantic snow bank on the street!

So for a while, I'm going to have to dream about flowers, playing golf, walks with my dog, and other good things I like to see and do in the spring.

How about you? Is it spring where where you are? Or are you still waiting like me?

I'm giving away an e-copy of Book 3 of my Left at the Altar series, ALWAYS A BRIDESMAID. To be eligible to win, here's what you have to do:

1. Comment on this blog and tell me something you like about spring, or something you plan to do this spring.

2. Like my Facebook page. Send me an email at jana.richards@hotmail.com with SPRING FEVER in the subject line to let me know.

3. Follow me on Twitter. Again, email me to let me know.

4. Subscribe to my newsletter. I send out a few newsletters a year to let readers know about new releases, contests, and other news.

5. Follow me on Goodreads. Email me at jana.richards@hotmail.com to let me know.

You don't have to do all five things, but the more entries you make, the more chances you have to win. I'll pick one name at random by April 15, 2014. The chances of winning depend on the number of entries. Good luck everyone!


To whet your appetite, here's the blurb and a short snippet from ALWAYS A BRIDESMAID. I hope you enjoy it!

Dani Dipietro has always considered herself an ugly duckling in a family of swans. She's the bridesmaid her friends count on, but never the woman any man wants for his bride. So she plays the funny girl and guards her emotions, and her secrets, closely.
When Zach Morrison was dumped at his wedding, Dani was there to help him through the humiliation. A year later they meet again and once more Zach needs her help. To fend off the unwanted attentions of his former fiancé, he asks Dani to pretend to be his girlfriend. They play their roles a little too well, and make believe turns into reality. But their relationship comes crashing down around them when Zach's trust issues cause him to accuse Dani of cheating. Telling the truth means that Dani will betray a friend, something she will never do. But keeping her secrets means she may be destined to remain a bridesmaid forever.

Here's a ten paragraph peek at ALWAYS A BRIDESMAID:

Wanting nothing more than to comfort, she wrapped her arms around his waist in a hug. He held her tightly, pulling her against him and burying his face in her neck. Dani inhaled the intoxicating scent of spicy aftershave laced with underlying notes of warm, clean male. How could Chantal treat a wonderful man like Zach this way?

She gently pulled away, keeping him at arm's length. "You're going to get past this, Zach."

"It doesn't feel like it right now."

"I know, but someday, when you're old and grey, you'll be sitting on the front porch with your wonderful wife of fifty years, and you'll say 'Thank Heaven Chantal cheated on me or I never would have met you.'"

He made a sound somewhere between a laugh and a sob. "Fifty years, eh?"

"Trust me."

Some lucky girl would snap Zach up in a minute, and if she was smart, she'd shower him with the love and consideration he deserved.

Some lucky girl, but not me.

Reluctantly, she took a step back. He squeezed her fingers before letting her go. With her heart pounding in her chest, and regret nipping at her heels, she hurried from the church.

Before she did something stupid, like kiss the jilted groom.


Don't forget to enter my contest! Scroll up to see how. And once you have, I hope you continue hopping your way through the MFRW Spring Fever Blog Hop.Here's the link if you need it: http://is.gd/mfrwave Happy Spring everyone!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

A Long Way From Eden #MFRWHooks


Welcome to the April 9, 2014 version of Book Hooks! Today I'm featuring my contemporary romance A LONG FROM EDEN. Here's the blurb:

Zane Martin's teenage daughter is pregnant. Meg Evan's son is the baby's father. Because Zane grew up not knowing who his father was, he'll be damned if he'll let his grandchild live with that shame. Meg was forced into an abusive marriage because of an unplanned pregnancy, so she knows that love is the only good reason to marry. Neither Meg nor Zane expects or welcomes the attraction that sparks between them. As they await the impending birth of their grandchild, old wounds open and long hidden family secrets come to light. The young couple builds a newer, stronger relationship, while Meg and Zane reach for a love passionate enough to overcome the past--if they're strong enough to trust it...and each other.

And here's eight paragraphs from A LONG WAY FROM EDEN. I hope you enjoy them!:

She stopped a few feet from his booth. Had Jane mentioned his name? From this close, he appeared tougher than the regular run-of-the-mill businessman. A jagged scar ran across the back of his hand, while another began at his left temple and disappeared into his eyebrow.

She cleared her throat when he looked up, extending her hand to him. "I'm Meg Evans. You wanted to speak with me?"

He stood and took her hand in a brief shake, his mouth unsmiling and tense. "I'm Zane Martin."  He looked around.  "Is there somewhere we can speak in private?"

Warning bells clamored in her head. "Anything you have to say to me, you can say right here." There was no way she was going anywhere private with this guy. She slid into the seat across from his.

He sat again and laid his hands on the table, his palms flat against the smooth brown Formica. Frowning, he said, "Are you sure? What I have to say is very personal."

"Look, Mr. Martin, I don't know you. I have no idea what you could possibly want to say to me, but whatever it is, I'll hear it right here." She folded her arms across her chest.

He studied her for a minute, his look enigmatic. She returned his scrutiny, wondering how he'd received the scars. Despite their dangerous appearance, they didn't take away from the attractiveness of the man.

He fidgeted for a few seconds, and then suddenly blurted out, "Your son got my daughter pregnant."

A LONG WAY FROM EDEN is available from  Uncial Press and other major e-book sellers.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

A Sneak Peek Sunday look at Burning Love

Happy Sneak Peek Sunday! Today I'm offering a sneak peek from BURNING LOVE, my humorous, paranormal, contemporary romance. Here's the blurb:

After causing three cooking fires in her apartment, Iris Jensen finds herself homeless.  She lands on Riley Benson's doorstep, looking to rent a room in the beautiful old home he's restoring.  It's only for six weeks until Iris leaves Portland, Oregon for her new job on a cruise ship.  Firefighter Riley knows exactly what a bad tenant she can be.  But he needs money to finish the work on the house he loves.  And something about Iris pulls at his heart…Meanwhile, in Heaven, two angels watch over the young lovers.  Angelica and Hildegard work in Heaven's Relationship Division, where angels match mortals with their soul mates.  The angels believe so strongly in Iris and Riley’s love that they break Heaven's rules to help them.  Can the the angels convince them their love will last a lifetime before time runs out?

Here's six paragraphs from BURNING LOVE:

        Riley’s heart tripped over itself when he answered an insistent knock at his door. Surprise didn’t come close to expressing what he felt when he discovered Iris Jennings on his front porch. The woman who’d occupied his thoughts for the past week wore a deer-in-the-headlights expression, obviously as shocked to see him as he was to see her.

Buddy let out a volley of sharp barks, picking up on Riley’s tension. Sigmund Freud had nothing on Buddy when it came to recognizing anxiety. “Buddy, sit.”

The black lab quieted immediately and sat obediently at his feet. Iris gave Riley a wan smile. “Well, at least you didn’t sic the dog on me.”

Riley folded his arms across his chest and leaned against the door frame, attempting a nonchalant air.  “Iris Jennings. What a surprise. My work doesn’t usually follow me home.”

“I’m sorry. In all the confusion of the fire I’ve forgotten your name.”

“Riley Benson.” It was humbling to know she didn’t remember his name. What on earth was Iris Jennings doing at his house? And if she didn’t know his name, how had she found him?

BURNING LOVE can be purchased from The Wild Rose Press and at other major e-bookstores.

For more great sneak peeks please go to http://sneak-peek-sunday.blogspot.ca/

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Spring Fling Blog Hop Winners!


The winners have been chosen! The winners of the grand prizes in the Spring Fling Blog Hop are:

Kindle Fire— Sally Fryman Wagoner
$75 Amazon Gift Card— Eva
$25 Starbucks Gift Card— Eva Millien
$25 Blushing Books Gift Card— Kathy Osborn
$25 Loose Id Gift Card— Jessica Subject


The winner of the prize on my blog, an e-copy of ALWAYS A BRIDESMAID, is (drum roll please!):

Brandi!

Congratulations! Brandi has been notified and copy of the ebook will soon be headed her way. A big thank you to everyone who entered my contest!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Spring Fling Blog Hop - Love is in the Air!


Welcome to the Spring Fling Blog Hop! This hop is offering some fabulous prizes including:

One Kindle Fire--Donated by Blushing Books
One $75 Gift Card to Amazon (or Barnes and Noble)--Donated by Jane Wakely
One $25 Starbucks Gift Card--Donated by Sue Lyndon
One $25 Gift Certificate to Blushing Books--Donated by Patty Devlin
One $25 Gift Card to Loose Id Books--Donated by Cara Bristol

I'm offering an e-copy of my latest release ALWAYS A BRIDESMAID. More on that below.

It's been a very long, cold winter and I can't wait for spring! When the snow finally melts, I'm looking forward to seeing some spring flowers.



It'll be so good to be able to get out into yard and plant some flowers. These Gerbera daisies grew in my garden a couple of summers ago.


My husband and I (especially my husband) like to golf. As soon as the weather warms up, we'll be out on the course.


Here's how you can win an ecopy of ALWAYS A BRIDESMAID:

1. Comment below and answer one or both of these questions: What are your favorite things to do in the spring? What are you looking forward to most this spring? If you are unable to comment here, you can send your answer to me at jana.richards@hotmail.com with SPRING FLING in the subject line.

2. Follow me on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/JanaRichards_ Let me know you've done so by emailing  jana.richards@hotmail.com with SPRING FLING in the subject line.

3. Like my Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/JanaRichardsAuthor Send me an email to jana.richards@hotmail.com to let me know. Don't forget to put SPRING FLING in the subject line.

4. Sign up for my newsletter. I send out info on contests and new releases a few times a year. Sign up at http://www.eepurl.com/m3UnT Let me know you've done so by emailing jana.richards@hotmail.com with SPRING FLING in the subject line.

5. Follow me on Goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2892274Jana_Richards And once again, please let me know at jana.richards@hotmail.com with SPRING FLING in the subject line.

You can enter at all five of these spots for five chances to win. The more ways you enter, the more chances you have to win. I'll pick one entrant at random using Random.org and award them an ecopy of ALWAYS A BRIDESMAID, book three of my Left at the Altar series. Entries close at midnight March 23, 2014 Central Standard Time, and I'll pick the winner on March 24. I will announce the winner on this blog. Chances of winning depend on the number of entrants received.



Here's a blurb:
Dani Dipietro has always considered herself an ugly duckling in a family of swans. She's always the bridesmaid her friends count on, but never the woman any man wants for his bride. So she plays the funny girl and guards her emotions, and her secrets, closely.
When Zach Morrison was dumped at his wedding, Dani was there to help him through the humiliation. A year later they meet again and once more Zach needs her help. To fend off the unwanted attentions of his former fiancé, he asks Dani to pretend to be his girlfriend. They both play their roles a little too well, and make-believe turns into reality. Their invented relationship comes crashing down when Zach's trust issues cause him to accuse Dani of cheating. Telling the truth means that Dani will betray a friend, something she will never do. But keeping her secrets means she may be destined to remain a bridesmaid forever.
And an excerpt:

A knock sounded at her door, so soft her banging almost drowned it out. She jumped to her feet, listening.
"Dani, are you awake?"
It was Zach. She tamped down the sudden elation at hearing him at her door. He likely just wanted to talk about Chantal, or worse, check to see if she was all right.
She closed her eyes. She couldn't bear his pity.
But she couldn't make herself pretend to be asleep and leave him out in the hallway either. She wiped tears from her face with the back of her hand and opened the door a crack. He smiled, and  her foolish heart fluttered.
Stupid heart.
She did her best to steel herself against him. "It's late Zach. What do you want?"
"I need to talk to you," he whispered, glancing toward Jonathan's door. "I can't do it here. Can I come inside?"
"It's late, Zach," she repeated." I'm tired. Can't we do this in the morning?"
"This can't wait till morning. Please Dani."
She hesitated. She was telling the truth. She was tired. Tired of fending off Chantal's barbs, tired of pretending they didn't hurt. And she was tired of pretending she wasn't in love with Zach.
I'm in love with him. The thought filled her with elation and trepidation at the same time. How could she feel so much for him after such a short time? How did she avoid getting her heart broken?
Part of her wanted to tell him to go away and leave her alone, but she found she simply couldn't turn him away any more than she could leave his knock go unanswered. She opened the door and stepped aside, wordlessly closing it behind him when he entered. She turned to look at him.
"Are you okay?" he asked.
Here comes the pity. She made herself smile. "Of course. It takes more than a dose of Chantal to get me down."
"That's good. I'm glad." He paced to the window before standing in front of her once more, his gaze intense. "Chantal told me she loves me and wants me back."
Her heart plummeted. She could barely make herself breathe. Squeezing her eyes shut, she steeled herself for what came next. He'd tell her thanks for her help, but they didn't need to pretend anymore because he was in love with Chantal and wanted to be with her. She just hoped she didn't break down and cry in front of him.
He put his finger under her chin, forcing her to look into his face. "I told her she and I were through. This time I didn't go running back to her when she called. And I have you to thank."
"Me?" She squeaked out the word. Her mind raced as fast as her heart. What did this mean?
"Even though the arrangement between us was just an act, you've shown me what a good relationship should look like. I don't want to go back to a one-sided relationship again, where I do all the giving and Chantal does all the taking. Thank you for helping me realize that."
"You're welcome." She turned away. His gratitude was almost as hard to bear as his pity.
"Dani? Are you okay?"
"Yes, of course. I really wish you'd stop asking me that." She couldn't face him. If he looked into her eyes he'd see the truth. She was so not okay. "You deserve someone who wants to make you happy, someone who loves you through everything."
"So do you." He gently took her by the shoulders and made her turn around. "I'm sorry about the stupid remark Chantal made at dinner tonight. It was uncalled for. I know she hurt you."
She tried to laugh it off. "Maybe I should thank her for reminding me how fat I was so I don't overeat."
"Was that why you wouldn't eat tonight?"
"I can always stand to lose a few pounds."
"Why? You're perfect the way you are."
She snorted. "Please, don't patronize me. I know what I look like."
He cupped her cheek, his eyes searching hers. "Why do you do that?"
"Do what?"
"Make a joke or accuse me of being patronizing when I try to compliment you?"
Because I can't believe you mean it. "I know I'm not perfect, not in looks, not like Chantal. Far from it."
"Maybe I don't want perfect." His thumb traced lazy circles over the delicate skin under her eye. "Maybe I want sweet and kind and funny. Maybe I want someone who makes me laugh, and makes me believe happiness is possible."
She stared at him, his gaze rendering her immobile. She wanted to tell him not to say things like that to her, not unless he was very, very sure he meant them. Because if he didn't really mean it, she might not survive.
But her heart lodged in her throat, making speech impossible. All she could do was pray that when he left her, her heart would still be in one piece.
Zach lowered his mouth to hers. His lips touched hers, softly, sweetly. She wanted more, so much more. She stepped closer to him, stretching on tiptoes to wrap her arms around his neck and press herself against him. His kiss changed in a heartbeat, consuming her, devouring her in a vortex of sensation and need. Nothing mattered except this moment with Zach in her arms.

I hope you enjoyed my excerpt! Don't forget to comment (or Like, Follow or Join) for a chance to win an ecopy of ALWAYS A BRIDESMAID. (By the way, book one in the series is HER BEST MAN, and book two is THERE GOES THE GROOM). And don't forget to enter the Rafflecopter contest for your chance to win the Grand Prizes. Good luck!  

To keep hopping please click here: www.hopswithheart.blogspot.com

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, March 9, 2014

A Sneak Peek at HOME FIRES

Today I thought I'd offer a sneak peek at one of my World War Two stories, HOME FIRES. A young English nurse arrives in Canada just after the war, but nothing is as she'd hoped it would be:
  Anne Wakefield travels halfway around the world for love. But when she arrives in Canada from England at the end of World War Two, she discovers the handsome Canadian pilot she’d fallen in love with has married someone else. Heartbroken, she prepares to return to London, though she has nothing left there to return to. Her former fiancé’s mother makes a suggestion: marriage to her other son.
Badly wounded and scarred during the war, Erik Gustafson thinks he’s a poor substitute for his brother. Although he loves Anne almost from the first time he sees her, he cannot believe she would ever be able to love him as he is – especially as he might be after another operation on his bad leg.  Anne sees the beauty of his heart. The cold prairie winter may test her courage, but can she prove to Erik that her love for him is real?
Here's my six paragraph snippet:     

She whirled around to glare at him, her eyes blazing. “No! I’m not a child! I don’t have to be molly-coddled and baby-sat. I spent six years in a war zone, hiding in bomb shelters, never having enough to eat. I worked in a hospital treating blitz victims with wounds so horrendous grown men would gag to look at them. I faced those horrors every day. Sometimes things were so bad I thought I couldn’t go on. But I did. Because I had to. And I’ll face things here too. So don’t tell me to give up because I won’t!”
Erik pushed himself out of his chair to face her, awed by her spirit and courage. She lifted her chin as if defying him to contradict her, her hands clenched at her sides. Her dark hair curled in wild abandon as it dried, framing her pale oval face like a halo. Her beauty and ferocity were magnificent.
“I think you’re the strongest woman I know.”
Her eyes widened in surprise, her hands unclenching. He caught the quiver of her chin as she fought to hold back tears. 
He opened his arms and she stepped into them, wrapping her arms around his waist and clinging to him. He held her tightly, inhaling the sweet, clean scent of her, never wanting to let her go. “Don’t cry. Everything’s all right now.” 
She lifted her head to look into his face, her dark eyes shiny with tears, her lips slightly parted. Erik stared at her mouth, wanting desperately to kiss her, to capture her sweetness. He slowly lowered his mouth to hers. To his surprise, she didn’t run off, or turn away in revulsion. He was so close her breath mingled with his, her breathing swallow and erratic. His heart slammed against his chest, his body thrumming with need. For the first time in over three years, he felt alive.

I hope you enjoyed my sneak peek. For more information, check out the book at The Wild Rose Press. For more snippets, go to http://sneak-peek-sunday.blogspot.com  Cheers!