Friday, June 23, 2017

J.J. Montgomery and GUN FOR HIRE

I'm very happy to welcome J.J. Montgomery to the blog today. Her new romantic suspense from The Wild Rose Press, GUN FOR HIRE, came out on June 14, 2017 and I'm part of the blog tour celebrating the release. I asked J.J. a few questions about her writing and her life. Find out more about this interesting debut author. Make sure to enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance to an ebook copy of GUN FOR HIRE. 

Gun For Hire

The Maui Heat Series

by J.J. Montgomery

J.J. will be awarding 5 ebook of Gun For Hire to randomly drawn winners via rafflecopter during the tour. Please use the RaffleCopter below to enter. Remember you may increase your chances of winning by visiting the other tour stops. You may find those locations here

BLURB: The job should have been easy—patrol a swank beach that serves as a backyard for Maui’s rich, kick out the riffraff, and get a tan in the process. But rent-a-cop Samantha Winters didn’t anticipate a deliciously grumpy cop, Sergeant Grady Roark, who comes down to the beach to bust her chops and instead leaves her breathless…and wondering why the one man who could help her seems determined to thwart her at every turn. Grady is keeping secrets from Sam that have him walking the line between attraction and duty. But when Sam becomes the target of a shadowy organization, Grady will have to choose between the law and the temptation of a woman who has him breaking every rule he’s ever known. The job should have been easy, but when the bullets start flying, Sam learns nothing is as easy as it seems when you’re a Gun for Hire. Buy Links: Amazon | The Wild Rose Press

Where did you get the idea for your new novel?

As with any story I tell, the whole thing started because I witnessed the real Sam Winters in action. My sister and I were on Secret Beach in Maui, and this woman comes storming out onto the sand. She was trying to enforce the Maui County code, and everyone was yelling at her, including the cops. And she was out there standing her ground, just giving everyone hell. And I thought, what on earth would make a woman wake up every morning and work this completely thankless job? I figured her motivation had to be something really, really compelling. And that was where Sam Winters – and Gun for Hire – started to take shape.

What do you want readers to come away with after they read your book?

I hope readers enjoy the romance between Sam Winters and Grady Roark but I also hope they see that Sam’s world is so much bigger than just falling in love. One of my favorite things about this book is the relationship Sam has with her nieces and her sister – that this isn’t a book about an individual, but rather a book about a family; a community.

Do you work on more than one book at a time?

I do! And I actually think it’s a terrible habit. I’m constantly cobbling together thoughts on different stories, really because I just can’t help it. I love dreaming up new characters, relationships and circumstances. But sometimes that’s an unnecessary distraction! And it always leaves me with the sense that there is something unfinished lingering in the background.

When were you first published and how did that happen? Was it a long or short journey?

I know a lot of authors who became published authors right away – after one attempt. Sadly, this is not at all my story! I started writing seriously about five years ago, wrote one manuscript, sent it around and…crickets. I was lucky to have a group of online writer friends who were willing to tell me the truth – that this first manuscript really, really sucked. So, I tucked it away under the bed and started my second manuscript. Three years later and I finally have a published novel! Had you told me at the start that I would have to keep writing for five years before anything would happen, I might have given up. So, in a way, it was my naiveté that saved me!

What is the hardest part of being a writer for you?

My greatest struggle as a writer is finding the time to write. I work full time, I have a husband, two small kids and a dog and cat…it’s like trying to write in the middle of a circus! Like nearly every author I know, the thing I lack is time.

What comes first for you – plot or character? And why?

My characters come to me first, always. I tailor my plot to who they are as people, what they need to grow and change and become something better…or in the case of my villains, worse. Why? I think because the books I’ve loved reading best had strong, real, authentic main characters. The plot is never what I remember about a book – it’s always a compelling character that keeps me wanting more.

If writing is your first passion, what is your second? 

I’m a complete homebody and an introvert. I have passion for being a mother, for cooking, for gardening…anything I can do in my own little home. For me, home is my happy place.

Do you have any pets? Are you cat person or a dog person? Or are you into totally different pets, like goldfish? What do you like best about your pet?

I grew up in a house where my mom was always rescuing something. At one point, my mom rescued a possum who had been injured and it recuperated in our garage! I think that background led me to adore animals—my house would never be complete without a pet. Right now, we have a rescue mutt who we affectionately refer to as “No, No Bad Dog” and we just adopted a Siamese cat from the pound—she’s actually sitting on my feet right this second!

What genre is your favorite to read?

I have always read a wide variety of genres, but from the time I was pretty young and sneaking my mom’s Judith McNaught novels, I loved romance. I loved everything about them, but most especially the fact that everyone got to live happily ever after. It’s like Susan Elizabeth Phillips says—life is too short to read depressing books. 

If money were not an object, where would you most like to live? Why?

I would live on Maui, right on Secret Beach. There is a good reason I set Gun for Hire there—because it might be the most beautiful place on earth, and I got to lose myself in my memories of that place every time I turned on my computer.

What are two (or more) of your all-time favorite books in any genre? 

Match Me If You Can, by Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Bet Me by Jennifer Cruisie.

What do you like best about your heroine in GUN FOR HIRE?

So much of Sam Winters is based on my own sister that spending time in her company is like being home. My sister is the kind of person who can talk her way into—and out of—any situation on earth. All of Sam’s humor, courage and sass comes directly from my own sister. 

How do you choose the names and physical characteristics of your characters? Do you base them on real people?

Most of my characters are, in some way, based on someone I know. I pick and choose characteristics depending on what the book needs, but it’s easier for me to predict what my characters will do when they’re based on someone I know.  

How can readers reach you or find you online?

I would love to hear from readers! You can always send me an email via my website, or through my Facebook page, . My favorite way to stay in touch is via Instagram, 

Buy Link:

The Wild Rose Press: 


“The sunlight was intense after a half hour in that gloomy space, but I squinted hard and kept moving toward a narrow set of steps down to the parking lot. Grady walked a few paces behind me, and if he heard the crinkle of paper as I moved, he elected not to say anything.
Grady hit the remote to his truck and grabbed for the passenger side door, his hand light on my elbow as he helped me up. Paper crackled as my butt hit the seat and Grady’s eyes narrowed. Without a word, he slammed my door and went around to the driver’s side, climbing up into the cab and stabbing the keys into the ignition.

“So, I—” I hesitated as I shifted in my seat and my movement was accompanied by the distinct sound of cardboard bending.

“No,” Grady muttered, and clicked on the radio. “No talking.”


“Shh.” Grady put a finger to his lips, his eyes still on the road. “Any minute you’re going to tell me about the felony crime you just committed. And then I’m going to have to deal with the fact that I was an accessory to a felony crime." 

“Umm, yeah.” I reached around to the back of my pants and eased the file folder up from my waistband, working it out slowly so as to not lose anything as Grady headed up the hillside toward his house. As I brought it around to look at it, the red block letters damning me to years of incarceration should I get caught, a muscle ticked in Grady’s jaw.

“You stole classified documents.” He shook his head from side to side.

I looked up at Grady and then down at the mangled file with the red Top Secret heading. I took a corner of the front sheet and ripped across the width of the page, separating the words “Top Secret” from the rest of the paper.

“They’re declassified now.” I crumpled up the classification and shoved it in my pocket.
Grady sighed.

I shrugged and opened the file.

Author Bio:  J.J. MONTGOMERY writes romantic suspense novels with a sense of humor. Her heroines are as smart as they are smart mouthed and the men in their lives are just trying to keep up. Gun for Hire is the first book in J.J.’s Maui Heat Series. 

If you'd like to know more, including info on her newest book, where she gets her ideas, and how it’s possible she can’t use Facebook, please visit her:

Social Links:  Website | Facebook |  Twitter  | Instagram

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

#GoodreadsGiveaway from Sha Renee

My guest today is Sha Renee, author of military romances. Sha is holding a Goodreads giveaway for FORBIDDEN KISSES. Enter for your chance to win a signed copy of the book along with a Forbidden Kisses coffee mug!

A sexy Navy pilot. A beautiful Navy instructor. A relationship prohibited by military regulations. Will they end their sizzling romance to protect their careers or keep it a secret... and pray no one finds out?

Forbidden Kisses
When loving the wrong person is a punishable offense.

Forbidden Kisses is available on Amazon:

Enter the Goodreads giveaway for a chance to win a copy of Forbidden Kisses, signed by the author and a Forbidden Kisses coffee mug.

When Navy pilot, Ethan Parker falls for the woman he met at a coffee shop, he knows she’s the one he’s waited his entire life for. She’s sensual, sassy and smart. What he doesn’t know is she’s also in the Navy, and her enlisted rank means a relationship with her could get him discharged from military service.

While on leave from teaching at a top Naval facility, Layla Matthews tumbles head-over-heels for the sexiest man she’s encountered in a long time. The fact that he can hold an intelligent conversation is an added bonus. Her world is turned upside down when she later discovers he’s a Navy lieutenant. A senior officer. Her new boss. Definitely off-limits.

Continuing their relationship could ruin their military careers. Ending it would break both their hearts. Will they end their sizzling romance or keep it a secret... and pray no one finds out?

The Author:

Sha Renée is a native New Yorker who joined the US Navy right after high school. She now lives in New Jersey where she creates stories on the pages where duty, honor and passion unite.

A true nature lover, Sha enjoys spending time outdoors, usually with a camera in her hands. She’s has a passion for motorcycles and sports cars and is a fan of auto racing, military air shows and The X Games – pretty much any activity with fast wings or wheels.

She hates cooking, loves music and believes every day should include a cup of hot coffee and a glass of chilled wine.

Friday, June 16, 2017

#AuthorInterview with C.B. Clark

Today my guest is C.B. Clark. Her newest romantic suspense is BITTER LEGACY, published by The Wild Rose Press. C.B. graciously answered a few of my questions about her life and her writing. Please welcome C.B. Clark to Journeys with Jana.

What was the most difficult thing about writing this book?

Getting the details of the sawmill and planer mill operations correct for the lumber mill the hero and heroine own was challenging. My husband worked for a large lumber company for many years, and we live in a lumber town. If I messed up, I’d hear about it.

Did you always want to be a writer?

I’ve always loved reading. By the time I was ten, I’d read the entire Nancy Drew Mystery series, and I’ve never looked back. I read voraciously in all genres, but romantic suspense is my sweet spot. Writing is another enjoyment. After I lost my voice for a year due to an operation, I decided to combine my two loves and write a book. The words bubbling inside me had to be spoken, even if through my characters’ voices.

Do you have any words of advice for beginning writers?

Join a critique group, either in-person, or online. It’s imperative to have another set of eyes, (preferably not your best friend or your mother), look at your work and give you an honest appraisal.

What is the hardest part of being a writer for you?

Like many authors, I’m uncomfortable with the business end of book promotion, but I realize it’s an important part of this business.

Tell us a bit about you.

I grew up in Canada’s Northwest Territories and Yukon. I’ve worked as an archaeologist and an educator. I enjoy hiking, canoeing, camping, and snowshoeing with my husband and dog near my home in central British Columbia.

Do you have any pets?

My German shorthaired pointer, Jazz, is my late-in-life child. She has such a gentle and trusting nature. She used to be filled with boundless energy, but now she’s thirteen years old and suffers from arthritis. Every day she and I walk on the trails in the woods behind our house where she sniffs out grouse and rabbits. Our days together are numbered, but she’ll always hold a place in my heart.

Jana here. I can totally relate. My dog Lou is a pug-terrier cross and she's fourteen and a half years old. She has arthritis, too, and I know the inevitable is coming, but I hope it doesn't come too soon.

Name two authors we might find you reading when taking a break from your own writing.

Sandra Brown and Susan Elizabeth Phillips

How can readers reach you and find you on line?

Goodreads Author Page:
Amazon Author Page:

What’s your tagline?

She only had ever wished for two things: a red dress and her father’s death.

That's intriguing! Tell us about your current release, BITTER LEGACY.

Sharla-Jean Bromley returns to her hometown after a seventeen-year absence with vengeance in her heart. From the very beginning, her plans go awry when she meets devastatingly handsome Josh Morgan, the man to whom her father left half of his multi-million dollar lumber mill.

Josh, suspicious of Sharla-Jean’s reasons for returning to town after such a long absence, vows to keep control of the company he feels is rightfully his. She is equally determined to prove she can run her father’s mill, even though it means working side-by-side with Josh, a man whose very presence evokes an attraction that is increasingly difficult for her to ignore. In the process, they must overcome a villain who’s determined to destroy both the lumber mill and their lives.

Will Sharla-Jean succeed and heal the anguish that has long filled her soul? Will she and Josh find the passion of a lifetime?



Even as the dreaded word reared like a monster inside her head, a thin trickle of smoke crept out of the dark storage room. Terrifying images of flame, smoke and searing heat threatened to overwhelm her. For a nightmare second, she was back in the midst of scorching heat and roaring flames.

Using all her strength of will, she tore free of the chilling memories. Instead of fleeing, she placed one wobbly step in front of the other and shuffled toward the storage room. Her nostrils flared at the acrid tang of gasoline and smoke. With a shaking hand, she gripped the door handle and opened the door.

A figure burst out of the darkness, crashing into her, knocking her back.

She yelped at the pain of the blow and the shock of falling. A jolt of agony and blinding light as her head hit something hard.

Heavy boots pounded across the tile floor. Cold air washed over her. And then darkness.

Buy Links:

The Wild Rose Press:




Author Bio:

C.B. Clark has always loved reading, especially romances, but it wasn't until she lost her voice for a year that she considered writing her own romantic suspense stories. She grew up in Canada's Northwest Territories and Yukon. Graduating with a degree in Anthropology and Archaeology, she has worked as an archaeologist and an educator, teaching students from the primary grades through the first year of college. She enjoys hiking, canoeing, and snowshoeing with her husband and dog near her home in the wilderness of central British Columbia.

Social media:

Amazon Author Page

Thursday, June 15, 2017

The Renos are Done! Finally!

I've been through a stressful renovation of my kitchen this past spring. Everything that could go wrong seemed to go wrong. Nothing terrible happened - at least the place didn't catch on fire - but we had just enough annoying incidents to drive us crazy and push up our blood pressure.

Beginning to put the pieces back together. Here's the fridge space before we had to change the cabinet above to a smaller one so the fridge would fit in.
It started with our designer. Our first indication that things would go south with her was when she emailed me and tried to get out of a meeting to finalize the design, a meeting she had previously told me was crucial. Then we discovered that she hadn't left a space tall enough for the refrigerator, even though I'd sent her the dimensions, copied straight from the manufacturer's website. A carpenter had to come back and change the cupboard over the fridge, which delayed things. And speaking of the carpenter, the electrician nearly electrocuted him. His metal level fell, touching the electrical outlet behind the stove. The stove wasn't there at the time, and the outlet wasn't supposed to be live. But it was. It was lucky the carpenter wasn't hurt. That would have been a whole new level of stress for me, and not so good for the carpenter either!

That's my dog Lou in the middle of the 132 boxes of kitchen that were delivered to our house.
Then there was the comedy of errors with the flooring. My daughter's boyfriend has a friend who installs flooring. So we used him as a sort of favor, and because his prices were supposed to be less then what the flooring store would charge. He measured our floors and told us how much to order, and he also told us we'd need a 3/4 inch sub floor under the new vinyl. But when he came to install the flooring and saw all the 3/4 inch plywood in the middle of our living room, he was surprised, saying it was too thick. We'd wondered about that, but hey, he's the one who told us to order it. Apparently, we'd had a failure to communicate. While he got the proper size sub-floor, I had to make arrangements for the flooring store to pick up the unneeded plywood. They eventually picked it up - several days later - and they eventually gave our money back for it, several weeks later. The incident was stressful and annoying, but not fatal. And the end result was that the kitchen flooring looks good, thank goodness.

We're making progress! The cupboard doors are on! Yay!
However, the kicker came the day after the flooring was installed. I walked downstairs and saw a hole in the basement ceiling. (Wish I'd taken a picture of that.) One of the installers must have accidentally stepped into a floor vent in the kitchen. He bent the aluminum of the duct and pushed right through the drywall ceiling. It cost $200 to fix the hole in the ceiling, so in the end, the bargain installation wasn't such a bargain.
It's finished! And the fridge actually fits.
There were a lot of little annoying things, like the painters who took longer than they said they would and left numerous spots of paint on the floor that I had to pick off with my fingernails. Or the plumber who installed our kitchen sink on a Friday but neglected a fitting that resulted in a leak we didn't notice until Saturday morning when the rug in front of the sink was soaking wet. When we called the designer to complain, she sent out a carpenter to fix the sink. A carpenter? Turns out the plumber doesn't answer his phone on Saturdays. Fortunately, the carpenter on-call knew what he was doing and the leak was fixed.

My new china cupboard. I love the way it lights up!
Anyway, it's all over now. We're not likely to take on another renovation for a long time, if ever. Despite all the pain, the results turned out pretty good. Even if they hadn't, I wouldn't bring anyone in to fix it at this point! I'm done with having workmen stomping all over my house.

One of the hardest things about the reno was making the time to write, and being in a head-space to write. There was a lot to do, and many decisions to be made. Furniture and belongings needed to moved around and then put back in place. Stuff needed to be cleaned up after the workers got through with it. Aside from the time commitment, it's tough to write when people are banging around your house and you're stressed out!

So, did we have bad luck, or do all renovations go pear-shaped like this? This is the most extensive renovation we've ever done, and definitely the most stressful. Since misery loves company, I'd love to hear your renovation horror stories. Comment away!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Hunks to the Rescue!

My guest today is Katie O'Sullivan. She's a fellow Wild Rose Press author who's part of a boxed set called Hunks to the Rescue - very intriguing title! Here's Katie to tell us a little about the anthology and her contribution, Breaking the Rules. Take it away, Katie!

Hunks to the Rescue Anthology

Including BREAKING THE RULES, by Katie O’Sullivan

Blurb for the anthology:

Heroes by Day...Sinful Bad Boys by Night

Fantasized about being rescued by a red-hot hunk? Indulge in this box set of alpha rescuers with a delicious talent for romance. 18 stand-alone novellas from New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning authors will steam up your nights and leave you begging for more. Whether the hunk you lust for is military, a firefighter, first responder, undercover agent, cowboy, bad boy mafioso, or that sexy, everyday guy who plucks you from danger only to kiss you senseless, this bundle has your hero.

18 hunks. 18 heart-pounding rescues. Brand-new stories. Get ready for a passionate and thrilling ride!

Blurb for Breaking the Rules:

Jake Campbell hates rules. Undercover to stop a drug ring at a posh Cape Cod resort, he can’t resist the fiery head chef, Abbie Duncan. She may be on the suspect list, but he can’t keep his hands to himself. With a rising body count, he must keep Abbie safe…but can he trust her with his jaded heart?

Buy Links:



Release date 6/13

Hunks to the Rescue Website:

The website has buy links, links to the Facebook Reader Group, descriptions of all 18 novellas and authors, and links to the Giant Rafflecopter Giveaway

Excerpt from BREAKING THE RULES, by Katie O’Sullivan:

Recognition jolted through Abbie like an electrical surge. Whatever she was about to say to the captain evaporated from her mind while she stared into the most gorgeous blue eyes she’d ever seen.
What was the hot blond god from the bar doing in her boss’s office?

Her first thought was that he’d tracked her down, but she quickly dismissed the idea. They hadn’t even spoken last night, something she’d regretted all the way home. She cleared her throat and was about to introduce herself when Captain Nickerson interrupted.

“Abbie, I didn’t realize you’d already met my, uh, nephew. He’s on Cape looking for a job. We were discussing the possibilities with John.”

She furrowed her brow and dragged her eyes away from the depths of the blue pools. “I didn’t know you had any nephews besides my brother, Uncle Charlie.”

Nickerson chuckled and twisted his silver watch band. “Jake’s dad is an old family friend, just like your dad and me, Abigail. When the boy needed to get out of Boston for the summer, his dad requested my help.”

Her eyes slid back over to Jake, appraising him. He looked like he was about her age, give or take a few years. Strong jawline, sculpted lips, wide shoulders, capable looking hands… she drank him in from top to bottom, every nerve ending in her body kicking into overdrive. Well-dressed and clean shaven, he certainly didn’t look like some punk kid whose father needed to call in favors to find him a job. And those eyes… she dared another glance at his face and found him looking straight at her, amusement twinkling within that sea of blue. She could happily drown in eyes like those. She wondered whether he was seeing anyone. Not that she’d had much time to date recently but for the right guy she could make time. Maybe. Her gaze slid along angular cheekbones to the scruff on his jawline… yeah, she should definitely carve out some time to get to know this guy.

She wondered what those sculpted lips would taste like, how they would feel on the sensitive skin along her neck… her cheeks blazed anew at the sudden and intimate direction of her thoughts. Nerves jangling, heart suddenly beating faster, she almost missed the rest of what Uncle Charlie was saying.

“…and at least now he’s learned his lesson about making time with the owner’s daughter. Unfortunately, come to find out the man has unsavory connections so we all felt it would be safer for Jake to make himself scarce for a few months. Thanks for offering him a position in the kitchen, John.”

Her eyes widened as she processed the meaning behind the words. “Wait a sec, Uncle Charlie. Let me get this straight. You want to hide a playboy who can’t keep it in his pants at work… hide him from the mob… and put him on my kitchen staff?”

About the Author:

Katie O’Sullivan lives on Cape Cod, drinking way too much coffee and inventing new excuses not to dust. Living next to the Atlantic influences everything she writes. A recovering English major, she earned her degree at Colgate University and now writes romance and adventure for young adults, and something steamier for the young at heart.

Contact Information:






Amazon Author Page:

Friday, June 9, 2017

All in for Love!

Today I have not one, not two, but six guests. The writers of  ALL IN FOR LOVE share a little about their stories in this boxed set. Don't forget to comment for your chance to win a prize. Please welcome these six talented authors!

Genre: Contemporary Romance/Romantic Suspense Anthology
Release Date: June 1, 2017

Six Award-winning authors bring you six *sweet to sensual* romances filled with suspense, thrills and maybe even a ghost or two—for less than the price of a cup of coffee—99 cents!

Welcome to La Bonne Chance Resort and Casino!

With thousands of people passing through the casino’s doors on a daily basis, it’s no surprise that a variety of lives and loves are on the line there. It’s said that you’re more likely to lose your heart at La Bonne Chance than a hand of poker. Whether you are the Director of Casino Operations or the guy who created its software, a jilted bride or a black jack dealer, a past guest’s ghost or a sous chef--when it comes to love, the stakes are high.

Thank goodness what happens at La Bonne Chance, doesn’t always stay at La Bonne Chance….
Ready to roll the dice?


To add to the fun, we are giving away one gambling themed handmade item to ONE lucky commenter who will be selected by a Random Number Generator.

Buy Link

Book Trailer


Newsletter sign up


ALL IN FOR LOVE: A Lucky 7 Anthology

An Inn Decent Proposal By Sharon Buchbinder
Perfect Odds By Lashanta Charles
A Ghost To Die For By Keta Diablo
Raising Kane By Kat Henry Doran
For Money Or Love By Margo Hoornstra
Take A Chance On Me By M.J. Schiller

An Inn Decent Proposal, Sharon Buchbinder
Can an hotelier with a past and a chef with a future revive the grand dame in a neglected old inn?

About Sharon Buchbinder
Sharon Buchbinder and her husband used to breed and show Egyptian Maus and Color Point Persians (formerly called Himalayans). If you’ve ever seen the mockumentary, Best in Show, you have an idea of what life was like 24 out of 52 weekends a year for this wild and crazy couple. When Sharon returned to school for her PhD in 1986, she decided a doctoral program plus a toddler plus a full time job was more than enough and they placed all their cats in good homes—including their own.

Perfect Odds, Lashanta Charles
When a jilted bride meets the man of her dreams, will she embrace the new plan, or cling stubbornly to the old one?

About Lashanta Charles
So I don't really have anything too witty, but I have a 6-year-old with a sharp tongue. One of the things I always tell my kids is that mommy and daddy knows everything. So one day I'm taking my daughter to the store to buy toys with her birthday money. This is how the conversation went:

Her: So, who gave me this birthday money?
Me: Poppy (Grandad)
Her: Oh, I really miss Poppy. I want to go see him.
Me: Well, you have to wait until this summer, when you're out of school.
Her: Why?
Me: Because you have to learn things in school and if you miss a day, you'll miss what you need to learn and then you won't know everything.
Her: Ohhhhh, you mean like you and daddy don't really know everything even though you say you do?
Me: *speechless*

A Ghost To Die For, Keta Diablo
She didn't believe in ghosts...until one showed up in her room.

About Keta Diablo
Keta once dressed up as old man on Halloween and picked up her 9th grader at school in costume! Needless to say, he wasn't pleased. In fact, he refused to get in the car. She followed him out of the parking lot and down the street for two blocks before he'd even look at her. Yes, he finally got in, but didn't appreciate her all. Update: He's in college now and says the "old man" incident is now one of his fondest childhood memories.

Raising Kane, Kat Henry Doran
Funny how a night in jail will change a woman's outlook on life.

About Kat Doran
There was the time I played private duty nurse for my uncle, after he underwent a resection of an aortic aneurysm. Very scary for a number of different reasons. It became my job to ensure Father Joe got sufficient rest which boiled down to playing traffic cop and time-keeper on visitors. On one afternoon, I could see Joe was fatigued and needed a nap. As I rounded up the crowd to send them out the door, one smirked at me. "Who's Nurse Ratched, Joe?" he asked.
I said, "Who are you, the Pope?"
He said, "Close to it, honey. I'm the Bishop."
Aw geez.

For Money Or Love, Margo Hoornstra
She's the one woman he can't afford to lose.

About Margo Hoornstra
Becoming a coffee connoisseur wasn’t an instant fall head over heels event for Margo Hoornstra. Initial cups were loaded with milk and sugar. When the children arrived, two AM feedings coupled with six AM risings for work necessitated more indispensable caffeine. Flavored, iced, lattes and such, a true coffee aficionado, she covets them all.

Take A Chance On Me, M.J. Schiller
Who do you count on when the chips are down?

About M.J. Schiller
One day--when M.J.'s triplets were about two, and her eldest four--she was doing laundry and matching up the socks, one of her least favorite chores. She lined them up all along her arms as she hunted for their mates. After a bit of fruitless searching, she glanced at the time and realized she needed to hustle to be on time for a prayer service she was attending at her church.

She made it in time, her four children in tow, and removed her coat before kneeling to say a prayer. An half hour later, as she piously prayed along with the congregation, her eldest asked, "Mommy, why do you have a sock on your shoulder?" She had missed removing one of her husband's long, mateless gym socks!

Monday, June 5, 2017

TURNING THE TIDES with Nell Castle

Nell Castle makes a return trip to Journeys with Jana to celebrate the release of TURNING THE TIDES, her second novel with The Wild Rose Press. Happy to have you visit again Nell!

Turning the Tides, my second novel with The Wild Rose Press, pivots around the story of a child removed from his parents on suspicion of neglect and abuse. Lee Cooper, the newly-licensed social worker assigned to the family, has been trying to teach the young mother appropriate expectations for a toddler. Despite Amber’s cold demeanor and severe discipline habits, Lee senses Amber contains a deep reservoir of love for her son. Against a chorus of voices who condemn the inexperienced mother, Lee fights to prove that Amber can resist the influence of her own abusive upbringing and learn how raise her son with love and affection.

I turned to my own experiences working with “at-risk” children and their mothers while creating the character of Amber. I worked for several years at a non-profit agency tasked with arming the most vulnerable mothers and children with scientifically-based, compassionate parent education. Every day I walked into apartments infested with cockroaches; homes with sagging porches, and holes punched into the walls; tenements so dangerous that we had to schedule visits before noon, when the possibility of violence became a real threat.

In each home I visited, no matter how dire the circumstances, I found young mothers who desperately loved their babies. Not much more than babies themselves, some of these teenagers had lived through rape by a family member. Many had moved from house to house, from one couch to another until they were kicked out. Some had spent time on the street, with all the horrors that implies. Getting pregnant meant each of these teens was bumped to the top of the list for free/subsidized housing. They could start over, offering their own babies all the love they’d never received themselves. But without any remotely healthy role models for parenting, most of these girls ended up making the same mistakes with their own children that their parents had with them.

In the character of Amber, I hoped to present the complexity of the many beautiful but damaged girls who grapple with the challenges of motherhood, poverty, and a lack of emotional support.


Ever the black sheep of her adoptive family, Lee Cooper has finally buckled down to a responsible job as a social worker in Southwest Florida. Defending her client against charges of child abuse awakens buried memories of her own abandonment in a Korean orphanage. Can she remain objective for the sake of a child?

Bricker Kilbourn, the court-appointed guardian, doubts Lee’s judgments--and his opinion might determine the little boy’s fate. He's got his own family issues and haunting secrets to keep. Falling for a woman is not part of his plan.

He’s running from his past. She’s searching for answers. Will their resolution to protect a child bind them together or wrench them apart?


He padded across the deck in his bare feet and reached over the seat for a white towel. Turning his back, he ran the towel over his head and neck, rubbing it against his face and down his chest. The muscles of his shoulder blades rolled beneath golden skin. He wore a pair of cut-off jean shorts, sodden with water and sagging just enough to reveal a velvety V above his waistband. In the nick of time, she raised her gaze from the curve of his back when he swung around to face her.


With an effort, she dragged her attention back to her purpose. “I wanted to let you know what Amber and I have been working on these past six months. The parenting education, I mean.”

Seagulls called in the air high overhead as the boat rocked among gently splashing waves. Bricker ran the towel over his biceps before draping it over the bucket seat. As he sat, his gaze locked with hers.
“I think we’ve seen the effects of her parenting education.”

His tone was dry. Lee’s mouth snapped open to retort, but she forced a smile instead. “She had a lot to learn when I first met her. But she kept every appointment and asked lots of questions about child development. Amber isn’t comfortable showing her emotions, but she loves her son.”

“I’m willing to believe she does.” Bricker shrugged, the tips of his hair curling in the warm air. “Doesn’t mean he’s safe with her.”

“She’s fighting against the cycle of abuse.” Lee’s voice sounded thin and desperate to her own ears.

“Breaking the cycle is hard,” Bricker said. “Not without a lot of therapy and more support than she seems to have. And we can’t allow Kaleb to be a guinea pig while she works out her own childhood traumas. Because the next time she shakes him could be his last.”

“There’s no proof she shook him.” Lee clasped her hands on her lap to keep them from trembling. She was getting nowhere with the guardian. Again. “He didn’t vomit, or have tremors, or have trouble staying awake. The doctor didn’t even bother to order a CT scan.”

“The ER doc wasn’t a neurologist,” Bricker reminded her. “On the other hand, Gloria Marshall is a court-mandated reporter of abuse. Are you implying she lied?”

“Maybe. Gloria thinks of Amber’s husband like a son, and she doesn’t like the girl he married,” Lee snapped.

Bricker’s eyebrows rose. “You really think Amber’s the victim of a conspiracy?”

“I don’t know.” She threw up her hands. “I just don’t think we should take away a young mother’s child when no one ever taught her how to be a good parent. I think she should be given a chance, for God’s sake!”

Bricker raised a calming palm. “Take it easy. I’m looking at all sides of the issue.”

Lee snorted. “You’re siding with the foster mom just because she works for the county. You’re not objective!”

“Well, I’m not the one who’s shouting.”

Bricker’s low voice held a warning. And damn it all, he was right. Every muscle in her body was clenched.

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Author Bio:

Nell Castle grew up in western Pennsylvania and graduated from Temple University in Philadelphia. Since then, she’s lived in Key West, Anchorage, Sarasota, and Virginia Beach. She moved back to northeastern Ohio to raise her kids closer to the family homestead but looks forward to moving back to a gentler climate. Until then, she revisits white powder beaches and craggy mountain tops only in her writing. Turning the Tides is her second release with The Wild Rose Press.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Clothes Make the Character with Sandra Tilley

Sandra Tilley released her debut novel with The Wild Rose Press on May 26, 2017. I love the premise of THE GHOST AND MRS. MILLER; the ghost of Libby's cheating husband haunts her while she tries to get on with her life and decide between the other two men in her life. Here's Sandra with a look at how clothes, and cars, influence the male characters in her novel. Please welcome Sandra Tilley to talk about her new release!


Libby Miller has not one, but THREE men in her life: Neil Miller she marries, Jesse King she hates, and Eli Anderson shares her secret. In THE GHOST AND MRS. MILLER, clothes and cars go a long way to characterize those three guys. 

Neil Miller:

Neil's best friends, Eli and Jesse, were stars on and off the football field. Neil was more of an asterisk. Even as a ghost, his wardrobe remained the same: light blue oxford shirt and khaki slacks. Besides his red-headed assistant, his love was a BMW 7 Series.

“Any way you can change that light blue shirt? It makes you look washed out.”

 Neil snorted. “Really, Libby? I’m a ghost and you want me to worry about a shirt?”

The street light illuminated Neil’s shiny, white BMW, precision-parked with measuring- tape accuracy between two white parallel lines…. I eased my five-year-old SUV close to his back bumper. Too close. Neil would freak if he saw my unwashed family car almost kissing the bumper of his worshiped 7 Series.

Jesse King:
High school football star and Big Man on Campus. Perfect teeth. Perfect hair. Perfect prick. Even his jeans were sharp.

Jesse escorted me to his black Corvette, where prominently displayed on the front was a tag that declared, “It’s great to be the King.”

Eli Anderson: 
Football hero and world-class prankster turned Captain Elijah Anderson of the Birmingham Police Department.

Eli unfolded his tall, solid frame from his bright yellow Hummer. … The perfect vehicle for a guy we called Tank in high school. 

A short-sleeved forest green polo shirt stretched so tight across his chest I could read the trademark without my glasses, and his cargo shorts had never felt the heat of an iron.

Do you know people in your life, real or fictional, whose car and clothes say a lot about them?


Libby Miller is a good Southern girl, and good Southern girls know the rules. But fate has no rules. On her nineteenth wedding anniversary, fate whips up a tornado of turmoil when Libby finds her husband Neil in the arms of his assistant. But the storm’s not over. Neil flips his BMW, and Libby comes home to find his ghost in the dining room. How is Libby supposed to grieve and move on with Neil’s ever-present, meddling ethereal presence in her life? 

With her twentieth high school reunion looming, Libby finds herself torn between two men from her past. One man promises passion and a new beginning, and the other wants to pick up where they left off. Neil stirs up a maelstrom of mischief, making it almost impossible for Libby to sort through the rubble. Libby anticipates a confrontation between her two suitors–not a shadowy stalker who chooses the reunion as his setting for a showdown.

In Libby’s quest for independence, she rejects the one man who can save her. Can she compromise the price of her freedom, or will it cost her a second chance at love and put her life in danger?


Jesse tapped my watch. “What’s your rush, Lib? I wanted to talk about Neil’s office building. My real estate guy said he’s been trying to get you to show him the property.”

Neil’s diaphanous form grew more solid, and he shook his fist in Jesse’s face. “It’s not for sale.”

“Why are you annoyed?” Oh, my God. I’d asked Neil a question—out loud.

Jesse answered. “I’m not annoyed. Now my real estate guy is a little pissed because you won’t return his calls.”

“He’s wasting his time calling. I haven’t made a decision on selling Neil’s building,” I said.

The air crackled and swelled. A cloud of Neil hung heavy over Jesse. “Why’s he so interested?”

Eli’s plastic cup crunched in his hand. “Not a cool time to talk business.”

“Still protecting her.” Jesse leaned back and then an ah-ha look sparked a grin. “Wait a minute. Are you two together?”

Before I could answer, Neil jumped in my face. “Well? Are you together?”

“Don’t be stupid,” I said to Neil.

Eli smashed his coffee cup flat and shot Jesse a deadly look. “You heard the lady.”

Jesse was being Jesse—making trouble. I answered Neil, but my response hit a nerve with Eli. They were too close and pressing in. I wanted to run away from the memories. From the three musketeers. From everything. The air felt thick and clogged my windpipe. I pulled my shirt from my neck and rested my hand at my throat. My pulse beat out an SOS. I pressed my fingers to stop the dots and dashes and warned my feet to stay put.

“Uh-oh.” Neil said.

If I thought things couldn’t get worse, I was wrong. A woman I hated worse than rattlesnakes walked by wearing a white blouse a size too small tucked into a black skirt a foot too short. Flanked by two little boys, her hands held fast. She walked past and long red curls bounced on her shoulders. Breathing ceased. Blackness pinched my vision to a pinpoint.

Neil swooped in front of me and hovered on his knees. “Please, please, please don’t say anything.”

I pressed my chest, forcing air up through my trachea and breathed in. I uncrossed my legs and wound them around the chair legs to hold me down. All of my anger and rage streamed at the woman who’d ruined my life, and if looks were lethal…But then the smaller of the two boys started crying and pulling away from the line to see Santa. She bent down, dried his cheeks, and hugged him.

“Maybe I should introduce her.” I said.

Eli and Jesse gave me confused looks. “Huh?”

I couldn’t look away from the Santa display. The other little boy helped his mom console his little brother. “See that redhead in line with the two little boys?”

“She’s hot,” Jesse inspected her from top to bottom. “You know her?”

I wanted to scream and throw my coffee cup at her, but she wasn’t a monster. She was a mom. A single mom. Like me.

Author Bio:

A true Southern Belle, Sandra Tilley wears pearls with everything--even flip flops. She grew up in Birmingham, Alabama, and taught middle school for many years; but she always dreamed of moving to the beach and writing novels. In 2001, she packed her car and headed south. When she dipped her toes into the blue-green waters of the Gulf of Mexico, she knew she was home. The Gulf Coast is a familiar setting in her romantic suspense and women's fiction short stories and novels.

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TWITTER:   handle is @Sandyftilley

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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

#NewRelease from Candi Fox

My guest today is paranormal romance author Candi Fox. Candi's latest novel, HARLEQUIN'S DECEPTION, released May 16, 2017. Make sure to enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance at winning prizes. Welcome Candi! 

Harlequin's Deception
The Naked Truth Series
By Candi Fox

Candi will be awarding 1 $10 Amazon GC, 2 Eooks of Harlequin's Deception and 1 Print Copy of Harlequin's Deception to randomly drawn winners via rafflecopter during the tour. Please use the RaffleCopter below to enter. Remember you may increase your chances of winning by visiting the other tour stops. You may find those locations here.


Ten years ago, the world as we know it changed. The shift is what it became known as. Overnight, paranormal beings came out of the proverbial closet. Something in reality had shifted. Those who had no idea they were paranormal were awakened to a new reality. Ten years in and Harlowe Lake Kelly, Harley to her friends, is back in her small Oklahoma town, widowed and striking out in a new career, namely, a successful magic agency. Her uncanny abilities at using potions, spells, and other means at solving supernatural crimes, thrust her into a partnership with local law enforcement. Things would be great if it wasn’t for the three sexy, but deadly, men who stand at all corners of her new life. Lucien, the ancient, alluring Vampire who has made it clear he wants more than Harley’s luscious curves. Cowboy, who wants to possess her in every way imaginable, and Aiden. The newcomer who has strict orders from his Vampire boss... but she senses he has his own agenda. But in a world where things and beings are never what they seem, life isn’t promised and love comes with many strings. So what’s a girl to do to untangle those strings?

About the Author:

Candi Fox, co-host of the wildly popular radio show Candi and Company with over 900 thousand listeners began her venture in the paranormal at the tender age of two, when she witnessed her first apparition. From that moment on the paranormal seemed to follow her. No matter where she moved, the house she lived in the house next door, or the house down the street always seemed to be haunted.
 She often wondered if she drew the spirits to her. Little did she know that she was indeed a magnet of sorts. It wasn't until she was in her late twenties that she found people who could not only explain her gifts, but would also help her hone them. Armed with this new knowledge she began to openly explore hauntings and other paranormal phenomena.

Growing up in Indiana lent her the opportunity to explore many famous haunted places including the Hannah House, which was once part of the Underground Railroad. A little over two years ago she moved to Tulsa, OK and has began to explore the haunted landscape in a new state.

Candi lives with her husband, and furry children in Tulsa. She is passionate about the occult, saving and rehabilitating horses, horseback riding, magic, all things mystical and has her Reiki Mastery.

She uses her own paranormal experiences as well as her own life traumas to write from a grounded and realistic perspective about subjects that are hard to talk about and even harder to feel for yourself.

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