Romancing the Hop

Romancing the Hop


What is your favorite thing about Romance? Well, we authors are ready to share our romantic tips and favorite romance reads! Starting on Friday and ending on August 31st, over 100 Authors and Bloggers will share their favorite things about romance, reading romance, and dating.

And while we do that, we are EACH doing a giveaway. Yep. There will be over 100 giveaways on each blog hosted by that Author or Blogger.

But that’s not all….

We have THREE grand prizes. You as a reader can go to EACH blog and comment with your email address and be entered to win. Yep, you can enter over 100 times!

Now what are those prizes?

1st Grand Prize: A Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet

2nd Grand Prize: A $130 Amazon or B&N Gift Card

3rd Grand Prize: The following Swag Pack!

Yep. ALL of that! Whoot!

My giveaway is a $10 GC of the ebook publisher/Amazon/B&N. Winners choice.

What does romance mean to you? I mean, besides chocolate, flowers and dinner? I’m going to be celebrating my 8th wedding anniversay on September 4th with my best friend in the whole world. Have we had issues? You bet. It happens but I know that we love each other and that is the most imporantant thing. Plus, we communicate. Sometimes he rolls his eyes at me but he listens. I listen to him, too. My husband is a man of few words (as most men are) but when he does talk, I listen. Sometimes I don’t want to hear what he has to say and vice versa. But isn’t that what a healthy relationship is all about? The ups, downs, complete turnarounds? His idea of romance, and mine too, is helping me around the house. When our son was younger he would take a day off and take Brian for the day. That day would be Momma Day. Just me, myself and I. Loved it and he will still take a day with Brian just so I can recharge. *sigh* I don’t need all the frills and customary things that define romance. I never have and never will. Yes, would flowers be nice? Sadly, I’m allergic to most. One day, he brought me a potted plant and I cried. It was my first “flower” that he ever gave me.

When we moved to Gun Barrel City over 6 years ago, my husband started his job on our anniversary and has worked on our anniversary ever since. Ugh! To my surprise he told me this week that he was taking the whole day, yes the WHOLE day off so we can spend our anniversary together. Just the two of us; okay, until we have to pick our son up from school. To me that is romance. He actually took time to be off my work that day, decide what we were going to do and will make it happen. He wants to go shopping (gasp-he HATES to shop) and go to a very nice lunch. Just the two of us. No son, no work, no internet, no nothing. Just the two of us. Yes, a good old fashioned date.

Glad I got my hair cut this week and gasp, I might even wear some makeup. Now, what to wear on that date?

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The Pirates of Vampire Island by Phoenix & Lover Boy-Blog Barrage & Giveaway

The Pirates of Vampire Island by Phoenix & Lover Boy-Blog Barrage & Giveaway


Follow this barrage to enter the contest at each participating stop for a chance to win one of ten (10) Kindle/Nook copies of Phoenix’s historical fantasy novel, “A Whisper From Eden”. More entries = more chances to win! Rafflecopter is at the bottom of the blog.

Title: The Pirates of Vampire Island, A Paranormal Romantic Thriller
Series: Steamy Voyages, Series #1
Author: Phoenix and Lover Boy
Publisher: Self (Amazon and B&N)
Length: 61,700 words
Genres: Paranormal Romance (Adventure)
Heat Level: Sizzling

AVAILABLE AT:
Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Pirates-Paranormal-Romantic-Thriller-ebook/dp/B0090OOOX6

B&N – http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-pirates-of-vampire-island-a-paranormal-romantic-thriller-steamy-voyages-1-phoenix-and-lover-boy/1112584812

BLURB:
Pretty Jane O’Doherty always chooses the wrong kind of guys. Her specialty seems to be guys who have serious flaws and who break her heart.

Her last breakup was a year ago and still she can hear his final words, “I’m sorry, Jane. I’ve found someone else.”

A 30-day cruise through the exotic Indonesian Islands with her best friend seems like the perfect distraction to mend her broken heart.

On board, she meets devastatingly gorgeous Nick, who attracts women in droves, including our lovely Jane.

And she meets Peter, who is the cute geek with puppy dog eyes.

Will either one just lead to another broken heart?

Should she run the other way from them both and just enjoy the cruise?

But before Jane can decide, the ship is attacked by modern day pirates.

Unlike the pirates of old, these guys are vampires and are more interested in human treasure than gold and jewels.

They take over the ship and take twelve women hostage.

And the handsome pirate leader—with eerie chalk-white skin, and red eyes, is looking for a special prize. He wants a woman for his mate and queen . . .

Jane catches his eye, but she, along with Nick and Peter, manage to escape in a lifeboat and onto the open sea.

They drift for fourteen days before finally finding an island.

But the fates are cruel, and their island turns out to be the home of the pirates and the lair of the Vampire.

The Pirates of Vampire Island is non-stop action . . . filled with adventure, suspense . . . and steamy romance.

EXCERPT #1:
Angry clouds rolled over the sparkling turquoise sea, transforming it into a lifeless slate grey.

Tucked in a small bay hidden from view, a black-market military sea craft modified for great speed waited silently. Ten men with chalk white skin and dressed in black sat tensed as the idle boat gently rose and fell with the small swells, their glowing red eyes intent on their quarry.

Through his binoculars, their six-foot-three leader studied a sleek cruise liner turning her mammoth bow to line up on the inter-island passage off the coast of Indonesia.

He turned to his crew. They watched as a small smile played across his handsome face, his red eyes shining bright.

He nodded. This was the right target. Once they boarded, the rich bounty they would gain would renew their powers.

The leader said only one word, “Midnight.”

EXCERPT #2:
A warm wind fanned my face. I watched the colorful flags wave in the breeze, as our sleek cruise ship, The Jakarta, cut through the Southeast Asian waters.

We had boarded the cruise in Bali. Yesterday, we stopped at Komodo Island for diving, sightseeing, and ogling the famous Komodo dragons. Now we were sailing due east through the Flores Sea. I was so looking forward to seeing some of the thousands of large and small islands, each exotic and mysterious, with strange creatures, amazing fish and birds, impenetrable rainforests, and people who still lived in the stone age.

The ship was a small luxury liner that held ninety passengers and a crew of thirty. And though the posh thirty-day cruise was a beacon for singles looking to be pampered, the main billing was its stops to scuba-dive off a few of the seventeen thousand islands of the Indonesian Archipelago – our ultimate destination the Forgotten Islands in the Banda Sea.

They would even teach us how to scuba for free; I had always wanted to learn. I tried it yesterday and was hooked.

I left the deck and went back to my cabin, which I shared with my best friend, Remy. She had dresses and shoes all over her bunk. I plopped down on mine and sighed.

“What’re you going to wear tonight?” she asked as she grabbed another dress and held it up to her, turning this way and that in front of the mirror.

“I don’t know. I don’t feel very social today. Maybe I’ll just order something and eat here. And read.”

“Which one?”

“Which one, what?” I asked.

“Dress … dress.”

“Oh yeah, dress. I like the red one on you. Looks great with your blonde hair.”

“Done.” She started hanging the other gowns. “Wasn’t that guy last night tasty?”

“Who? The one every girl’s eyes were glued to?”

“No. No. Who can be interested in a guy who attracts woman in packs? No, the one last night at dinner. With the green eyes and sweet smile. Zack.”

“Oh, yeah. Nice.” Actually, the guy who attracted every female on the ship had also attracted me. I had seen him by the pool with his ever-present fan club. The guy had it all. A classic Greek face, black curly hair, olive complexion – probably never visited by a zit. Fabulous build. He seemed to be charming the knickers off every young woman aboard. Maybe that’s what my bad mood’s about, I thought. Being attracted to the gorgeous guy started me thinking about Tony again – and the phrase that runs over and over in my head – “Jane, I’m sorry. But I’ve found someone else.”

I hadn’t been attracted to a man since my fiancé left me for another girl a year ago. You get burned, and you stay away from the stove.

I sighed. I had to stop this. I jumped off my bed. “I need to shake this off. How about a swim?

“Sure.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
I was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, and grew up in California. I came from a long line of Americans who were pioneers and individualists. The family tree is filled with rugged people: rough coal miners, pioneers, and farmers living in log cabins in the early west. I wrote A Whisper from Eden, A Historical Fantasy, but like to write in several genres.

Lover Boy (aka my husband) was born and raised in Anaheim, California and wishes to remain anonymous because he doesn’t want anyone to know he likes to write romance novels. (Let’s keep his secret.)

We wrote THE PIRATES OF VAMPIRE ISLAND, A Paranormal Romantic Thriller (Steamy Voyages #1). And we are working the sequel to Steamy Voyages and a dystopian thriller, The Trash Pile People. We live in Hollywood with our ornery tomcat, Snickers.

Website: http://www.fictionbyphoenix.com
E-mail: read@booksbyphoenix.com
Twitter: @PhoenixRead
Goodreads: Phoenix Reads
Facebook Page: Fiction by Phoenix
Facebook Profile: Lee Jordan
Pinterest: Lee Jordan
Amazon Author Central: Amazon.com/author/phoenixread
Amazon Reviews by Phoenix Profile Page: http://amzn.to/P8T5QD
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Sun God Seeks…Surrogate?  by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff / Blog Barrage

Sun God Seeks…Surrogate? by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff / Blog Barrage


Title: SUN GOD SEEKS…SURROGATE?
Series: (Book 3, Accidentally Yours Series)
Author: Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
Publisher: Self
Length: 295 Pages
Genres: Paranormal Romance (Action/Adventure, Comedy)
Heat Level: Sensual

Sequel to ACCIDENTALLY IN LOVE WITH…A GOD? and The New York Times Best Seller, ACCIDENTALLY MARRIED TO…A VAMPIRE?, this story has it all! Vampires, gods, and our favorite evil Mayan priests, the Maaskab.

5.0 out of 5 Stars on Amazon for “Sun God Seeks…Surrogate”!

AVAILABLE AT:
Amazon | B&N | Kobo

BLURB:
When 24-year-old Penelope learns of a new miracle drug that could cure her ailing mother, it’s the answer to her prayers. Until she sees the cost. But for every door that closes, a window opens. In this case, the window calls herself Cimil, and she’s quite possibly the most insane person Penelope’s ever met. Could it be because this complete stranger just offered Penelope one million dollars to carry her wealthy brother’s baby?

But Cimil’s brother isn’t your everyday millionaire. In fact, he gives new meaning to the word hot.

EXCERPT:
Wondering which screw in her head had come loose this time, twenty-four-year-old Emma Keane strapped a parachute to her back in preparation for yet another fun-filled jungle mission.

“Dammit! Stop wiggling!” she barked over her shoulder. “And that had better be your flashlight!”

Well, actually, it was a cranky, rather large warrior named Brutus strapped to her back and wearing the parachute because she had yet to find time for skydiving lessons.

Dork.

In any case, looking like a ridiculous, oversized baby kangaroo wasn’t enough to stop her from making this nocturnal leap into enemy territory—Maaskab territory. She had scores to settle.

Emma sucked in a deep breath, the roar of the plane’s large engines and Brutus’s growls making it difficult to find her center—the key to winning any battle. And not freak out.

Funny. If someone had told her a year ago that she’d end up here, an immortal demigoddess engaged to the infamous God of Death and War, she would have said, “Christ! Yep! That toootally sounds about right.”

Why the hell not? She’d lived the first twenty-two years of her life with Guy—a nickname she’d given her handsome god—obsessed with his seductive voice, a voice only she could hear. Turned out, after they finally met face-to-face, their connection ran blood deep. Universe deep, actually. A match made by fate.

Emma rubbed her hands together, summoning the divine power deep within her cells. One blast with her fingertips and she could split a man right down the middle.

“Careful where you put those,” Guy said, cupping himself.

Emma gazed up at his smiling face and couldn’t help but admire the glorious, masculine view. Sigh. She knew she’d been born to love him, flaws—enormous ego and otherworldly bossiness—and all.

His smile melted away. “Please change your mind, my sweet. Stay on the plane, and let me do your fighting.”

“Can’t do that,” she replied. “The Maaskab took my grandmother, and I’m going to be the one to get her back. Even if I have to kill Tommaso to do it.”

Guy shook his head. “No. You are to let me deal with him.”

Emma felt her immortal blood boil. She’d trusted Tommaso once, and he’d betrayed her. Almost gotten her killed, too. But she’d known—well, she’d thought—it wasn’t Tommaso’s fault. He’d been injected with liquid black jade, an evil substance that could darken the heart of an angel. That’s why, after he’d been captured and mortally wounded, she’d begged the gods to cure him.

Then she did the unthinkable: she’d put her faith in him again.

Stupid move.

He’d turned on her a second time, the bastard. Yes, his betrayal—done of his own free will—was her prize on that fateful night almost one year ago when her grandmother showed up on their doorstep in Italy, leading an army of evil Maaskab priests, her mind clearly poisoned.

“If Tommaso hadn’t helped her escape, we could’ve saved her,” she said purely to vent, because she really wanted to cry. But the fiancée of the God of Death and War didn’t cry. Especially in front of the hundred warriors riding shotgun on the plane tonight.

Okay, maybe one teeny tiny tear while no one’s looking.

“Do not give up hope, Emma.” Guy clutched her hand. “And do not forget…whatever happens, I love you. Until the last ray of sunlight. Until the last flicker of life inhabits this planet.”

Brutus groaned and rolled his eyes, clearly annoyed by the sappy chatter.

Emma elbowed him in the ribs. “Shush! And how can you, of all people, be uncomfortable with a little affection? Huh? You bunk with eight dudes every night. That’s gross by the way. Not the dude part. I’m cool with that. But eight, big, sweaty warriors all at once? Yuck. So don’t judge me because I’m into the one-man-at-a-time rule. That’s messed up, Brutus.”

Brutus growled and Guy chuckled.

In truth, Emma didn’t know what Brutus was into or how he and his elite team slept, but she loved teasing him. She figured that sooner or later she’d find the magic words to get Brutus to speak to her.

No luck yet.

Accepting a temporary defeat, she shrugged and turned her attention back to the task at hand. She took one last look at her delicious male—seven feet of solid muscle with thick blue-black waves of hair and bronzed skin. Sigh. “Okay. I’m ready,” she declared boldly. “Let’s kill some Scabs and get my granny!”

She glanced over her other shoulder at Penelope, their newest family member. Her dark hair was pulled into a tight ponytail that accentuated the anger simmering in her dark green eyes. Pissed would be a serious understatement.

Emma didn’t blame her. What a cluster.

“Ready?” Emma asked.

“You better believe it,” Penelope replied. “These clowns picked the wrong girl to mess with.”

Guy frowned as they leaped from the plane into the black night.

– @ –

ACCIDENTALLY IN LOVE WITH…A GOD?
(Book 1, Accidentally Yours Series)
Published on January 22, 2012
294 pages

147 *5-Star* Reviews on Amazon for “Accidentally in Love with…a God!”

AVAILABLE AT:
Amazon | B&N | Kobo

BLURB:
Twenty-two-year-old Emma Keane has a secret friend. He’s powerful, mysterious, and devastatingly handsome. In her dreams, anyway.

In real life, he’s an enigma. Maybe just a teensie jealous. Definitely overbearing. He’s also a voice only she can hear.

So who or what is he? He won’t say. But if she wants to be free, to be normal, Emma will have to trek to the jungles once ruled by the Mayans and find the forgotten ruin holding the answers.

However, the ruthless deity she’s about to unknowingly unleash on the modern world might not be so easily extracted from her life. Bottom line, he’s got enemies, and now, so does she.

– @ –

ACCIDENTALLY MARRIED TO…A VAMPIRE?
(Book 2, Accidentally Yours Series)
Published on March 2, 2012
244 pages

USA TODAY and New York Times Best Seller!

95 *5-Star* Reviews at Amazon for “Accidentally Married to…a Vampire”

AVAILABLE AT:
Amazon | B&N | Kobo

BLURB:
“If you love her, set her free. If she comes back, she’s yours. If she doesn’t…Christ! Stubborn woman! Hunt her down, and bring her the hell back; she’s still yours according to vampire law.”–Niccolo DiConti, General of the Vampire Queen’s Army.

THE DETERMINED VAMPIRE: Niccolo DiConti has faithfully served as leader of Her Majesty’s army for over a millennium, but he’d rather sunbathe in the Sahara than spend another grueling day under his demented queen’s command. However, no one has ever left her side and lived to tell. So when a powerful goddess prophesies he will meet his salvation—a human woman he must turn into a vampire with her consent—he eagerly rises to the challenge. After all, how hard could it be to seduce a human female into taking the immortal plunge? Harder than he thinks. Because his mate won’t be born for another three centuries, and when he wakes up in the goddess’ tomb, not only is his life a mess, but his destined female isn’t about to settle for a coldhearted vampire. Can he win her over before it’s too late? Not if his enemies have anything to do with it.

AN UNWILLING BRIDE: On the night Helena Strauss meets the fierce, devastatingly handsome vampire who saves her life in the jungles of Mexico, she knows her world will be forever changed. Because an attraction this mind blowing only comes along once in a lifetime—or existence. And when he claims she is his one true mate, destined to be his for all eternity, it’s a fairytale come true. So what if her knight in shining armor is a vampire? Nobody’s perfect. But discovering the powerful, overbearing immortal doesn’t “do love”? Deal breaker. Helena will flee and set out to accomplish the impossible…sever the otherworldly bond between them. And it turns out, Helena is just the leverage Niccolo’s enemies need to break the mighty warrior and wipe out his people.

WARNING: This book contains sexual content (For some of you, not enough. I know. I’ll try harder, I promise.), adult language, hot men with unrealistically large physical characteristics, female whining (What? I whine all the time. It’s a healthy form of venting!), silliness, snark, sarcasm, and blatant abuse of the English language.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Before taking up a permanent residence in the San Francisco Bay Area, Mimi spent time living near NYC (became a shopaholic), in Mexico City (developed a taste for very spicy food), and Arizona (now hates jumping chollas, but pines for sherbet sunsets). Her love of pre-Hispanic culture, big cities, and romance inspires her to write when she’s not busy with kids, work, and life…or getting sucked into a juicy novel.

She hopes that someday, leather pants for men will make a big comeback and that her writing might make you laugh when you need it most.

Website: http://www.mimijean.net
iTunes: http://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/mimi-jean-pamfiloff/id498303364?mt=11
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/MimiJeanRomance
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Mimi-Jean/218935048190356
Email: mimi@mimijean.net

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What do you look for in a Review?


review

What do you look for in a review?
Whether you’re writing or reading one, there are certain things you always look for. What are those? What do you think are the most important elements you think the reviewer should include? What would you like see more? Less? What is the role of a review? How important is it?

I like to keep it simple. I always put the blurb first so I don’t have to recap the plot. I DO NOT HAVE SPOILERS in my reviews. Never have and never will. I can’t stand it when reviewers do that. If you completely spoil the book, what is the motivation for the reader to go out and buy the book. It hurts the author, too when it comes to sales. Think about it? I have pre-ordered books, made the mistake of reading a review of that book and it was ruined for me. To this day, I have books on my Nook that I have never read because of spoilers in reviews.

I like to keep my reviews to about 250-500 words per review. It really depends on the length of the story. I like to read about the heroine/hero and what the reviewer likes about them. Also, what they like about the couple together. If there are secondary characters, where they significant to the story or just filler? Also, did the reviewer like the writer’s style of writing. Did it have good flow? Did you feel like you were there in the scene? Did they use imagery well or did you feel apart from the scene? I will admit that I don’t like when two reviewers from a review site review the same book. I like the different opinions but I would like to see the reviews separate not in a running commentary. For this reader, it’s too distracting.

Overall, I think reviews can be good. Admittedly, I don’t rely on Goodreads and Amazon that much anymore. Lately, there as been flaming and just basic stupidity with the reviews that are being posted. Just my opinion though.

So what are your thoughts? Comments? What do you like to see in a review?

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