NaNo Dream Cast Update

This is directed to any of you who will be participating in the creation of our rom-com novel for NaNoWriMo and who haven’t voted for the dreamcast. We have a tie for the dreamcast heroine, Phoebe Morgan, and this is the one time that I probably can’t fathom a tie. Even if you’ve decided that you’re going to sit back and just watch the craziness (which is a great option, lately I’ve been giving it some consideration!🙂 ha!), please help us decide our dreamcast since yours truly needs a picture!

If you missed the dreamcast post, it’s here and it’s derived from selections that you may have voted on previously.

Also, Susan Jarreau and I have started some pinterest boards to help with settings, clothes, etc. If you love pinterest, think you might love to design the “sets” for the novel, join us. Let your imagination run wild. We have a rock star and a witch! So much to consider. Just email me at and I’ll invite you to join the boards. Also, please feel free to suggest any boards as I’m not quite totally there yet.

Speaking of witches. As I do not want to offend anyone in the Wiccan community by pretending I know much about it, I will be taking great liberties. If someone wants to world-build a beach witch community, please feel free…and share.

Are any of you rock aficionados who might want to help develop the life of a rock star? This input would be greatly appreciated.

Lastly, for sanity’s sake, I have been considering writing this episodically so that it would seem almost like self-contained stories like the Clare and Damian saga. If you have any feedback on this, please drop me a line.

And, if you have any general feedback, whatsoever, leave it in the comments. You know like five-minute vegetarian meal creations for the writer who will not be cooking in November but who still needs to eat. heh.😉 (kidding……)

Anyone written a novel who realizes that I’m missing a huge chunk other than the actual writing? Let me know. My sanity is excluded. Thanks.

Vote on our Phoebe Morgan! Here.



Of Birds and Bunnies


Sunday Fiction Photo Prompt for October 16, 2016

Thank you to Alistair Forbes  of Sunday Photo Fiction for providing this prompt! To read more entries for this prompt, click here.

and now for something completely different…..

Of Birds and Bunnies

“Grandpa, why do you hang your bird feeder in the park instead of your backyard?” Liam asks, holding the bag of birdseed as his grandfather fills the cylinder.

“Many reasons, I suppose. First, I think the birds are safer because I never see anyone’s cats here and I can sit on the bench and people-watch as well as birdwatch.”

Liam nods his red head. “Birds are cool. I like cardinals.”

“Cardinals like many birds are monogamous.”

“What’s that mean?”

Liam’s grandad smiles and sits on his bench. “It’s like your Mom and Dad. They chose each other and now they stay with each other.”

“Huh. But not you and grandma.”

“Well, Liam, I fell in love once with a beautiful woman and I thought I too could be a cardinal, but then this wren came along and then a finch. I don’t think I’m a bird at all.”

“Then what are you?”

Grandpa watches appreciatively as a blonde woman sashays by in very short denim shorts talking on her cell.

“Definitely . . . a rabbit.”

Liam contemplates his grandfather. “Because of your big ears?”


end 10/21/2016

S. Darlington

Review of Second Grave on the Left


Second Grave on the Left by Darynda Jones

Publisher: Macmillan

Publication Date: August 16, 2011

This review refers to the Macmillan Audiobook version.

At the end of Second Grave on the Left there is an interview by the book’s narrator, Lorelei King of the book’s author, Darynda Jones. One question is (paraphrased): how did you come up with the character of Charley Davidson? Darynda Jones replies that Charley is an amalgam of three of her favorite characters: Stephanie Plum, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Lorelei Gilmore. Yes! I thought. Those are three of my favorite characters and combined the effect is awesome.

Second Grave on the Left is the second book in the Charley Davidson supernatural mystery series about a grim reaper, Charley, who is also a PI. In this novel, the best friend of Charley’s receptionist and neighbor, Cookie, has disappeared and Cookie thinks that something bad has happened to her. Parallel, Charley discovers that Reyes, the son of satan, and the being who has saved her from death multiple times, is no longer in his corporeal body and that he is waiting for his corporeal body to die because it is the portal for demons to come to earth; without the portal, they can’t come. So Charley needs to find his body because there is no way she’s letting him die.

I listen to audiobooks on my commutes to and from work, which means that I more than appreciate it if they are highly entertaining. The Charley Davidson novels are told in first person and the voice is quirky, funny, sometimes snarky, and frequently deadpan. If I am lol-ing in the car on the way to work, it makes it a good day.

Jones also packs an awful lot of punch in each of her novels. There’s not only the mystery and the associated action, but Charley has to deal with her family and friends and her interactions (SEXY!) with Reyes. In Second Grave on the Left, there are some emotional and insightful interactions between Charley and her family, especially her sister.

I very highly recommend both the first two books of this series. And, if you like to listen to audiobooks on your commute or while doing mundane tasks, I would suggest you seek them out. My public library has tons of audiobooks easily downloaded to your phone or mp3 player; check out your public library! Most have an amazing selection of audiobooks and ebooks.

Lorelei King as the narrator of Second Grave on the Left does a great job with all of the voices.

From AmazonSecond Grave on the Left

rating: butterflybutterflybutterflybutterflyladybug  (4 butterflies and a ladybug out of 5)


C-I-O: Marry Me Mad Release Blast and Giveaway!

Two broken hearts begin a journey toward being whole again.


The Blueberry Lane Series
The Rousseaus #2
Kate Regnery
Releasing Oct 21st, 2016


Did you fall in love with The English Brothers? Were you hot for the Winslows?
Katy Regnery’s Blueberry Lane series continues with The Rousseau

For as long as Madeleine “Mad” Rousseau can remember, she’s been the “sweet” twin to her sister Jax’s “sassy.” But after an especially painful break-up, Mad decides she’s had enough of being sweet. Children’s librarian during the day, she begins visiting Philly’s seedier nightspots on a quest for adventure and experience. When Cortlandt “Cort” Ambler, the ex-boyfriend of Mad’s sister, Jax, saves her from disaster on one such evening, an unlikely friendship is born between the rebellious librarian and the moonlighting pianist…and two broken hearts begin a journey toward being whole again.

Amazon | B & N | iTunes | Kobo




He turned to find Mad standing in the doorway of the small room holding a towel and dragged his eyes hungrily from her bare feet, over the lines of her comfy gray pants, to her soft-blue, scoop-necked T-shirt, ending at the shiny onyx waves of hair that framed her lovely face.

His breath caught as he stared into her eyes, recognizing the girl he’d known in the mouth-watering body of the full-grown woman before him and feeling blessed beyond measure to have this glimpse of her that he suspected few were privy to: Mad Rousseau without the heels and chignon—heart-stoppingly beautiful and utterly captivating au natural.

He cleared his throat and she grimaced, dropping her eyes to her toes and the towel to the arm of the sofa.

“I’ll get us some tea,” she murmured, slipping away in a hurry.

Cort stared at the space she’d vacated so quickly, feeling confused, wondering what the heck had just happened. Why had she grimaced? Why had she looked…disappointed? Picking up the towel as he followed her to the kitchen, he pushed open the swing door and stood just inside of it, scrubbing the rainwater from his hair as he watched her work in the small space. She finished filling a kettle with water and placed it on the stove, finally glancing up at him sheepishly.

“Not a good look for me,” she said softly, standing up on her tiptoes to open a cabinet over the microwave. “I’ve already been told. Multiple times.”

“I’m sorry…you’ve been told what exactly?” he asked. He looped the towel around his neck and stepped toward her, reaching over her head for the mugs she wanted. He held them out to her, and she flicked her glance to them before gesturing to her clothes.

“That I can do better than sweats and a T-shirt.” She shrugged. “But I was wet and cold and tired. I didn’t feel like putting on another outfit, so I—”

“I’m sorry. Wait a minute,” he said, putting the mugs down on the counter and staring at her in disbelief. “Are you apologizing to me for the clothes you’re wearing?”

She gestured helplessly with one hand. “I saw the way you looked at me.”

“Baby,” he said, reaching out to touch the soft-blue fabric covering her shoulder and running his fingers over the small sleeve of the T-shirt, then down the length of her arm, “you look good enough to eat. You look beautiful. And anyone who thinks different is a blind fucking lunatic.”

“Cort,” she gasped, her eyes softening as she stared up at him.

“I’m serious. The pencil skirt and fancy hair? Gorgeous. Sure. But this?” He let his eyes roam slowly, intently over her form, pausing at the luscious mounds of her breasts before stopping at her lips as his fingers threaded through hers. “This is you, Mad. And you’re…” He shook his head looking for the right words, but only one circled around and around in his head. “Baby, you’re music.”


Don’t miss any of The Rousseaus



New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Katy Regnery started her
writing career by enrolling in a short story class in January 2012. One year
later, she signed her first contract and Katy’s first novel was published in
September 2013.

Twenty-five books later, Katy claims authorship of the multi-titled, New York
Times and USA Today Blueberry Lane Series, which follows the English, Winslow,
Rousseau, Story, and Ambler families of Philadelphia; the six-book, bestselling
~a modern fairytale~ series; and several other standalone novels and novellas.

Katy’s first modern fairytale romance, The Vixen and the Vet, was nominated for
a RITA® in 2015 and won the 2015 Kindle Book Award for romance. Katy’s boxed
set, The English Brothers Boxed Set, Books #1–4, hit the USA Today bestseller
list in 2015, and her Christmas story, Marrying Mr. English, appeared on the
list a week later. In May 2016, Katy’s Blueberry Lane collection, The Winslow
Brothers Boxed Set, Books #1-4, became a New York Times E-book bestseller.

In 2016, Katy signed a print-only agreement with Spencerhill Press. As a
result, her Blueberry Lane paperback books will now be distributed to brick and
mortar bookstores all over the United States.

Katy lives in the relative wilds of northern Fairfield County, Connecticut,
where her writing room looks out at the woods, and her husband, two young
children, two dogs, and one Blue Tonkinese kitten create just enough cheerful
chaos to remind her that the very best love stories begin at home.



Three Paperback Copies of JONQUILS FOR JAX, Rousseaus series book one
a Rafflecopter giveaway

C-I-O: Welcoming the Bad Boy Sale Blitz and free short story!

*On Sale for a VERY Limited Time*


Hero’s Welcome #3
Annie Rains
Released August 2nd, 2016


From the bestselling author of Welcome to Forever (“Full of heart and emotion!”—Lori
Wilde) comes a sweet, sexy novel about breaking all the rules. In Seaside, North Carolina, the boys on the base are heroes—but that doesn’t mean they’re always well-behaved.
As a preacher’s daughter, Valerie Hunt only dates the very respectable, very boring men who meet her father’s strict standards. In private, however, she leads a double life as a romance writer of steamy stories about the least respectable sorts of men. Valerie has
always kept her hottest fantasies separate from her real life, but when she nearly runs a hot-blooded biker off the road, the lines begin to blur.
Even though Valerie almost killed him, Griffin Black can’t be angry after he learns the reason for her distracted driving: an unruly puppy belonging to her ailing friend. As a member of the military police K-9 unit, Griffin insists on training the dog himself. But he
soon wonders how he’s ever going to stay disciplined around the most alluring, down-to-earth, and totally unattainable woman he’s ever met. Valerie is the ultimate good girl. And Griffin is going to need all his old tricks to unleash her wild side.
ONLY $0.99 
Amazon | B
& N
 | Google | iTunes | Kobo
Get a FREE Short Story
It’s Val and Griffin’s first Christmas together and it’s off to a rocky start, 
but there’s definitely a HEA for one of my favorite Seaside couples.


Annie Rains is a contemporary romance author who writes small town love stories set in fictional towns on the coast of North Carolina. Raised in one of America’s largest military
communities, Annie often features heroes who fight for their countries, while also fighting for a place to call home and a good woman to love. When Annie isn’t writing, she’s spending time with her husband and 3 children, or reading a book by one of her favorite authors.
Looking for more Hero’s?

Check It Out: Kon Cover Reveal!

Lisa Cardiff
(Trassato Crime Family #2)
Published by: Limitless Publishing
Publication date: November 1st 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Once upon a time, I was the woman you envied. I had it all. A wonderful family. The perfect fiancé who also happened to be my best friend. Money and resources. The power and influence that came with sharing the Trassato name.

One night my fairytale became a nightmare, and I’ve been living in Hell ever since. A rival family killed my fiancé. My father succumbed to cancer. In the middle of it all, I bargained away my future to Konstantin Trincher, a member of the Russian mafia. It seemed like the perfect solution at the time—my brother’s girlfriend in exchange for me.

Only things weren’t that simple. I promised myself to Konstantin and my family promised me to Nico DeAngelo, the underboss of the Trassato Crime Family.

Konstantin and I form an alliance to unravel our bargain. The only problem? We didn’t expect to fall for each other in the process. Now I’m forced to choose between love and loyalty. One choice will break my heart and the other will break my family.

Add to Goodreads

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**Designed by Deranged Doctor Design**


Author Bio:

After spending years practicing law and a million other things, Lisa decided to pursue her dream of becoming a writer and she must confess that inventing characters is so much more fun than writing contracts and legal briefs. A native of Colorado, she lives with her husband and three children in Denver.

Subscribe to my newsletter for giveaways and deleted scenes: Lisa Cardiff newsletter.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter



Check It Out: Skye Book Blitz & Giveaway!

Kimberly Loth
(The Dragon Kings, #4)
Publication date: October 19th 2016
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Young Adult

Rowan Winters is completely in love. With a shifter dragon.

But the drop-dead gorgeous Skye only thinks of Rowan as her best friend. But when she turns up in his room in the middle of the night in tears, he yearns to do whatever he can to help her. Even if that means running away and letting his family think he’s dead.

Skye’s entire world turns upside down the day her scales turns black. She knows she’ll have to flee to find answers. But she wasn’t planning on Rowan coming too. She just wanted to say goodbye. He is so eager to help that she can’t leave him behind even though she knows she’ll never be able to love him in return.

Together, they fight off murderous dragons and uncover sinister plans. But can they find the answers Skye so desperately seeks? And can Rowan sacrifice everything he knows to win her heart?

Goodreads / Amazon


Skye was a coward. She knew that, but she couldn’t bring herself to stay and watch Sid and Aspen commit suicide. There was no way the council would allow Aspen to become queen.

Not to mention that then Skye would have to know the exact moment when she died, because anyone who pledged loyalty to Sid would die the second he did. No, running away was better. She should have enough time to get to her parents before death came. She’d able to say goodbye.

This was her fault. Pearl had told her to keep Aspen safe. Instead she’d gone and made everything worse. Maybe if she’d kept Aspen at home, Sid would’ve been fine.

If she’d never given Sid that damn loyalty seal, she wouldn’t be this close to death. She wasn’t sure what she was thinking at that time. Part of her thought he’d make it. Another part didn’t care whether she lived or died. It wasn’t like she’d have much of a life anymore.

When Sid became King she found Everett and begged him to remove the seal that marked how much she loved him. He did and now she longer had a swirl of gold on her ankle. But Everett warned her there would be a price to pay. She gladly paid it at the time, but but she hadn’t expected to feel so empty.

For a half second she thought about heading to Everett’s instead of her parents. Maybe he could remove the loyalty seal before she died. She shook her head. How cowardly of her. The price would not be worth it. That was for sure.

She was only fooling herself though. She would make the same decision if given the choice. Aspen was the only way they could possibly survive. When Skye dropped Aspen off , there were three possible outcomes. One, she and Sid would die and all those with loyalty seals would as well. Two, Helios, the final dragon that Sid needed to secure all the loyalty seals got to him before the council had a chance to killed him. Or three. Aspen could be become queen. She’d have to convince the council that she should be queen and pass the queen’s tests She hoped Aspen could do it.

She felt her wings tiring. This could be the beginning of her death. She hadn’t known anyone who had died because of the loyalty seal and didn’t know how it worked. She spotted a lake below her and decided to stop and get a drink. She had to make it home.

Skye landed a little rougher than normal. This had to be the end. She staggered over to the water and took a deep drink. The water sparkled under the full moon. Skye stretched her wings out and swiveled her neck around to scratch her nose. She froze. Her wing was no longer silver.

This must be part of her death. Or at least that was what she tried to convince herself of. Adrenaline coursed through her veins and she no longer felt tired. Dragons didn’t change color before they died. In fact dragons never changed color. Except when they became king. Then they turned black.

Skye spun neck around the other direction. It was more than her wings that had changed. Her whole body was now a deep coal black.

This was impossible. There was no way she could become king. Sid was king. Unless he died. Then someone else would take his place, but that someone had to be a full royal dragon and male. Of which she was neither. There had to be some huge mistake. This had to be a dream. She stuck her head in the cold water and came out again. Still black. This wasn’t possible.


That stupid prophecy.

The one that said three kings would rise. The one that said they could come from other races. But she was still female. Something was definitely wrong. She was also still very much alive. She couldn’t go see her parents now, not like this. No, she had to go see the one dragon who could explain how this happened.

She wracked her brain trying to think of everything she’d learned about the prophecy. She loved history and so she studied a lot, but this baffled her. Nothing in the prophecy said anything about a girl. She’d spent hours listening to Everett’s boring details about the prophecy, yet he hadn’t mentioned that females could become kings. He was so in for it.


Author Bio:

Kimberly Loth can’t decide where she wants to settle down. She’s lived in Michigan, Illinois, Missouri, Utah, California, Oregon, and South Carolina.

She finally decided to make the leap and leave the U.S. behind for a few years. After living in Cairo, Egypt for 2 years, she’s decided to go to the Far East and currently calls Shenzhen, China home. She loves romantic movies, chocolate, roses, and crazy adventures.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter



Blitz-wide giveaway (INTL)
  • $25 Amazon gift card

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Black Cat, Blogger Recognition, Sunshine Blogger, and Versatile Blogger Awards

I have been blogging since April and I know I’ve said that it’s been an incredible experience and I truly mean that. I have met such a fantastic and supportive group of people across this globe who have been willing to share their hearts, souls, experiences, tears, and laughter with me.

I have very much enjoyed receiving awards not only because I love the pretty awards (so pretty and precious!) but also because it means a lot that you have thought of me. I believe that the awards are not only a great tribute to a person, but also a way for the person giving to find out new things about other bloggers, because, honestly our blog postings rarely tell you that our favorite color is PURPLE and we love PEARL JAM and Hozier (or maybe they do😉 ).

Anyway, as of today, I will no longer be accepting awards…unless they sparkle or bark.😉 (kidding…except on the bark bit. Always room for another pup.) No, really. I’m considering myself a veteran blogger now (don’t laugh!) and wish for you to share these wonderful tributes with the whole new wave of newbie bloggers.

I want to thank:

Our Maisha




for nominating me for the awards. I’ve sharing one question from each below.

One piece of advice for new bloggers: Don’t be afraid to become part of the community. It might initially seem intimidating, sharing your thoughts, but it can also be amazing.

What do you do when noone is looking that one might find odd😉One thing? Heh. I put on music and dance around. My dog finds it odd so I presume that humans would as well….no one has seen as far as I know. (Maybe they unfriended me.)

What is your favorite dessert? Tres Leches cake, creme brulee or homemade pumpkin or pecan pie.

One fact about myself. I love to play tennis and should think about that rather than salivating over the desserts I was just thinking of.

Again, thanks to you all for making this such a fantastic experience!

Blog on!🙂



Shadowbox Memories


PHOTO PROMPT © Claire Fuller

Friday Fictioneers. Thank you, as always to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting. To read more stories written for this photo prompt, click here.

Shadowbox Memories

My grandmother rocks while her fingers worry the ridges of a pink-hued scallop shell from her shadowbox. She smiles.

“The photos Alice wants are on the clothes bags,” she says.

“Why are you donating everything?”

She shrugs. “Downsizing, Beanie.” Her voice is tinged with sadness? Regret?

She grabs my hand, presses the shell into my palm and closes my fingers over it. “You take the shadowbox. You would have loved your grandpa. Your Danny was like him. You understand me?”

I nod.

Memories of teenaged boys, lives stolen by wars, and babies born to widows while the world skips along.


end 10/19/2016

S. Darlington