Saturday, October 19, 2013

And The Winner Is...

Jasmine! Congratulations on winning a FREE copy of Celtic Knot. Like me, Jasmine prefers print copies and I've got one on the way to her.

Thank you to all who dropped in to read my excerpt and leave a comment. I am grateful for all the visitors! If only I could afford to give you each a free book. Alas, the Lottery has not yet seen fit to give me the winning ticket! However, you can get Celtic Knot as an eBook for only $3.99. It's available for all eReaders. For Kindle, you can go directly to Amazon; for others, you can shop your favorite online retailer or go to Smashwords (they let you choose your preferred format, so even Kindle readers can shop there, too).

Happy Reading, Everyone!!

I'd be thrilled to keep in touch with you on my Facebook page, too. I usually post news about Christian book bargains, new releases from my friends and favorite authors, and funny stuff that may or may not related to writing. And, of course, it's where you'll be able to find out first what I'm up to with new novels! Here's the address:

Friday, October 11, 2013

Excerpt from "Celtic Knot" by Tammy Doherty

Today I'm offering an excerpt from my third novel, CELTIC KNOT. After reading it, be sure to leave a comment. Next Friday, I'll randomly choose one person from all the comments to win a FREE copy of 'Celtic Knot' - either print or eBook.


Before Abby could respond to her daughter’s obvious infatuation with this stranger, the front door banged open and heavy footsteps rapidly crossed the store. A small grimace crossed Abby’s face before she could stop it. With a pang of shame she saw that the stranger noticed her sour expression. He turned away without comment.

“Where’s my girls?” a deep voice boomed.

“Boone!” Millie squealed and threw herself at him.

Boone caught up Millie, twirling her about in the open space in front of the counter. He set her down carefully before turning his attention to Abby.

“Abby, I been looking for you this morning. Thought maybe you would like to join me for breakfast.”

“Good morning, Boone.” Abby forced herself to be cordial. It wasn’t as if she didn’t care for Boone, just not the way he wanted her to. “I’m afraid Millie and I already had our morning meal.”

Pshaw,” Boone dismissed. “You couldn’t possibly have eaten yer fill.”

For a split second, Abby felt grateful to God. The feeling passed quickly. “Oh, but we did eat our fill and then some. We shared breakfast with the Stantons.”

This time Boone frowned. “The preacher’s family? What you doing over there?”

“Jennifer and Millie are friends, if you must know.” What she really wanted to say was that it was none of his business.

Out of the corner of her eye, Abby saw the stranger make his purchase and move to leave the store. He politely pretended not to hear the conversation even though he was less than three feet away. At the same time, Boone became aware of the man’s presence.

“You,” Boone pointed. “You new in town?”

“Could say that,” Kyle answered vaguely.

“Ya’ are, or ya’ could say that, which is it?”

“Both, I reckon.”

“Look, mister,” Boone stood toe to toe with Kyle, their eyes level with one another. “I’m the law in these here parts an’ it’s my job to know about newcomers to town. An’ I ain’t partial to your wiseacre answers.”

“Well, I guess that makes us even, ‘cause I’m not partial to your lewd, nosy attitude.” Kyle held Boone’s gaze, as if daring the other man to make something of his answer.

Boone stared back, unblinking. He wouldn't back down from a stare-off. Most cowpunchers either worked for Raymond Bigelow or were just passing through Prophecy. Bigelow hands generally knew their place when it came to Boone Warren. Rambling men were naturally intimidated by Boone’s large size and the way he carried himself. This man was quite obviously not intimidated or impressed.

Tension thickened the air as each man waited for the other to back down. Abby noticed that while Boone’s gun rested in its customary place at his hip, the stranger was unarmed. If Lachapelle noted this fact he made no sign that it mattered. And though she well knew how apt Boone was with his fists, she began to wonder if perhaps this newcomer might be able to best him in a fight. She wasn’t willing to find out the answers to any of these questions.

“That’s enough,” she scolded sharply. “I’ll not have such a show of childish violence in front of my daughter.”

Even the sharpness in her voice did not break the staring match. Abby frowned and forced herself between the two men, shoving Boone backwards. He broke eye contact with Lachapelle and turned his gaze to her.

“I’m ashamed of you, Boone Warren.” Her voice was quiet, yet forceful. “You really must learn your manners.”

He dipped his head as if apologizing, but only to Abby and only for a moment. His anger was barely veiled as he looked again at Lachapelle. “Make sure you're on your best behavior when in my town. I don’t tolerate any hooliganism. Understood?”
Be sure to leave a comment with your email or contact information. And if you'd like to see what I envision the characters and locations look like in CELTIC KNOT, check out my Pinterest board for the novel: I'd love to connect with you on my Facebook author page, too!

Don't want to wait to start reading CELTIC KNOT? Download it now for $3.99 at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or for other eReaders check out Smashwords.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Interview with Millie Finnigan from CELTIC KNOT

It's my week in the Grace Awards Book Launch spotlight and I've decided to give you all a character interview. Be sure to come back later this week to read an excerpt from Celtic Knot. Both the interview and the excerpt are sure to leave you wanting more, and I'm offering a special on Celtic Cross and Claddaugh, the first two of my historical romance novels. Check below the interview for details and where to buy your copies!

First, a little about Celtic Knot:

 When widow Abby Finnegan meets ranch hand Kyle Lachapelle, she figures he’s as deceitful as her family. But Kyle is a Secret Service operative working undercover, and Abby has a disturbing connection to his counterfeiting case. Abby’s protecting her heart while Kyle can’t afford the feelings stirring in his. Love is out of the question…or is it the answer?

Today I have the pleasure of chatting with Millie Finnigan. Millie's mother, Abby Finnigan, is the heroine of CELTIC KNOT.

"Welcome, Millie. Have a cookie and tell us a little about yourself."

photo ©BLMcKinney
Millie grabs a cookie but waits to eat it. "Hi, I'm excited to be here today. Let's see, I'm seven years old and I live with my mother in Prophecy, Colorado." She takes a bite of cookie, not talking again until she's finished chewing. "My real name is Millicent but Momma only calls me that when she's cross. I try not to make her angry 'cause she works real hard and hardly ever smiles. Momma has a pretty smile but sometimes her eyes seem to look far away and her face gets sad."

"Why do you think she's sad?"

"It's as if she's looking at a photograph in her memory." Millie fidgets with her dress, dropping her gaze a moment before continuing. "Remembering Daddy, I think. He died when I was four. That's when we moved back to Prophecy. Momma says that Daddy called me his little blessing. I don't hardly remember him. Sometimes that makes me sad."

Girl With a Hoop (1885) by Pierre-Auguste Renoir
"What makes you happy?"
A smile brightens Millie's countenance. "Playing with my best friend, Jennifer Stanton. Her pa is the town preacher an' her folks are real nice. They always treat me like family. Pastor and Mrs. Stanton worry about Momma an' me, 'cause we don't always have money for nice things. But Momma takes real good care of me."

"Doesn't your grandfather own the largest ranch around Prophecy? In fact, he owns most of the town. Why doesn't your mother ask him for help?"

Millie shrugs. "Momma's family isn't very nice. I've never even met my grandfather. Once, I heard someone say that Raymond Bigelow, that's Momma's father, is so mean an d contrary he makes Satan look angelic. All's I know is my uncle Clayton is scary. He says things like teaching the whelp proper respect. That's what he calls me, the whelp." She shudders. "I don't like him."

"I'm sure your mother stays away from Clayton, then."

"We try but Momma works at the Silver Streak Saloon, as a maid. Uncle Clayton goes there a lot and he looks for Momma. He likes being mean, an' not just to her. I can't understand why Boone is friends with him."

"Who is Boone?"

"He's our sheriff. Boone's real nice. He always wants to buy me stuff but Momma won't let him. She says she don't want to be beholden to him." Millie scrunches her nose. "Not sure what that means. I do know Boone wants to marry Momma. He might be a nice daddy. Still, I want Momma to be happy. She never smiles for Boone, least ways, not the kind of smile she gets when Mr. Lachapelle is around."

"Kyle Lachapelle? When did you meet him?"

"He came into the mercantile one morning when Momma was buying supplies an' things." Millie leans forward to whisper, "He likes lemon candies just like me." She sits back in the chair, speaking in her normal voice once more. "An' he stood up to Boone, didn't let anyone push him around. Later, he walked with Momma and me and he was a real gentleman. I hope he comes around more, 'cept Momma told him she don't want to be his friend. I hope she changes her mind."

"I sure hope so, too. Millie, it's been a joy having you here today. Do take one of those lemon candies from the jar for later. Yes, you may take one for Jennifer as well. Thank you for visiting."

Get your copy of Celtic Knot in print or eBook at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or for other eReaders go to Smashwords. As a bonus, for anyone who hasn't read Celtic Cross or Claddaugh (or maybe you'd like an eBook copy), I'm offering both novels FREE this week only!! To download your free eBook, go to Smashwords and at check out use coupon code UJ48L for Celtic Cross and UR99Q for Claddaugh.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Be Swept Away to 1746 India in “A Heart’s Home”

This week's Grace Awards Book Tour spotlight shines on A HEART'S HOME by Laura J. Marshall. I'm happy to offer this excerpt for readers to get a taste of this Christian Historical Romance novella set in 1746 India.

Excerpt from A HEART'S HOME:
Braddock sat for a long time, his head in his hands. Asyra had cleansed his forehead with the cool water. Her image had wavered as he watched her walk away and spread the blanket on the dirt floor. He heard her praying quietly, wishing he was closer to overhear. He joined her with silent prayers, for them to cast off safely from India…for Asyra…for his brother…and his own entangled heart.
He moved from the chair, almost sliding to the floor and stumbled to the bed. His head hit the hay, sharp ends digging into his face. He flipped to his back and fell into a deep sleep.
When he awoke, all was quiet in the small house. He could hear gentle snoring from Mrs. Campbell. The heat was oppressive, it clung to him and pushed him to his feet. As he straightened, he noticed Asyra awake and seated in a chair by a window at the back of the house. She had the burlap tucked up an inch and her nose stuck out the window. He grinned at the childish gesture, coughing quietly to announce his presence.
She turned, smoothing the burlap with her hand and met his gaze.
Braddock motioned to the blanket on the floor.
“Did you rest at all?”
“Yes, I slept just fine. You?”
“If I had awakened in heaven itself, I wouldn’t be surprised. I slept as if I were among the dead.”
She laughed quietly at his description, a small dimple appearing in her left cheek.  She quickly sobered as she saw Mrs. Campbell roll over.
“It looks to be late afternoon. The heat will ease.”
“We’ll be against the wind most of the way home and wishing for this heat come November.” He spoke quietly, not wishing to break the spell of time with her.
“Do you remember England at all?”
“I was but a babe. My father told me some of mother’s estate…the lush gardens and green pastures. He said there were woods so thick you could get lost.”
“It’s true. There’s an enchanting forest with its fill of plants, trees, and fauna. There’s one spot in particular, just a small path to the south of the estate that leads to a God-made haven, where honeysuckle climbs the trees and carpets the forest.”
Asyra seemed to roll this over in her mind. “It sounds beautiful….a-and what is fauna?”
“Animals native to our region….the migrant cuckoo, the roe deer.”
“I-I’m very interested in your herbs and flowers.”
“I’ll see you have books to study.” As she broke his gaze, he recalled what she had said about reading. Her eyes clouded with worry.
“I have your mother’s bible, in the bag. We’ll teach you to read before we reach England.”
“That’s a high order.”
“We can do it…together.” The word slid over his tongue and his heart responded. It expanded and seemed to hesitate in its beating. Together. He and Asyra. His eyes fell to her white teeth worrying her lip. Her soft pink lips parted. She caught his gaze and fell still.
“Th-thank you for bringing the bible.” She stood and walked to the door, taking the bucket with the white willow over to the basin and placing it on the ground. “And the willow.” She bent her head and he saw a tear fall as she took a small cup, dipped it into the pitcher, and wet its roots.
Braddock felt like the air was being squeezed from his lungs. He crossed the room and stood behind her. She barely stood as tall as his shoulder. He looked down as an ankle skimmed into view, the bells quietly jingling. It was funny how the sound had become so commonplace now, part of his days and his memories.
He touched her arm and she turned, falling forward and against his chest. He could feel her silent sobs being wrenched from her very soul. She gulped a deep breath and put her face back against him so he couldn’t see her.
“I’m here. I won’t leave you.”
“Y-y-you can’t promise me that.”

“I can and I will promise you.”

Get your copy of A HEART'S HOME at Amazon or Barnes and Noble

About the author: Laura J. Marshall is a full-time mom of five boys. When not on active duty, she is the best-selling author of The Battle Cry Devotional series and inspirational fiction (historical romantic suspense and contemporary romance). She operates a popular blog called The Old Stone Wall which hosts and promotes Christian and clean books and encourages interaction between authors and readers. See more at