Monthly Archives: December 2013

New Tuesday Releases!

Barbara Vey -- December 31st, 2013

Happy New Year’s Eve!  If you’re going out, have fun and be safe!  I’m going to stay in where it’s toasty warm because it’s freezing out there.  I’m going to celebrate with some new books I just got.  Not sound exciting?  Well, you’re wrong.  I’ll probably be traveling farther than you, meeting more people and having some grand adventures.  I’ll save the partying for the conferences I’ll be attending in 2014.

Don’t forget to go to yesterday’s blog and vote on your favorite book of 2013.  Results will be in Thursday’s blog.  Now check out the books coming out this week.

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Let Me Be the One by Bella Andre (Harlequin MIRA)

Badlands by Jill Sorenson (Harlequin HQN)

A Gentleman ‘til Midnight by Alison DeLaine (Harlequin HQN)

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Turn Up the Heat by Lori Foster, Christie Ridgway, Victoria Dahl (Harlequin HQN)

Big Sky Secrets by Linda Lael Miller (Harlequin HQN)

Alice Close Your Eyes by Averil Dean (Harlequin MIRA)

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Unleashing Mr. Darcy by Teri Wilson (Harlequin HQN)

Taste of Darkness by Maria V. Snyder (Harlequin MIRA)

The In-Between Hour by Barbara Claypole White (Harlequin MIRA)

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Hunted by Elizabeth Heiter (Harlequin MIRA)

Snow Day by Shannon Stacey, Jennifer Greene, Barbara Dunlop (Harlequin Anthology)

Autumn Moon by C.I. Kemp

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Dragon Maid by Ann Gimpel

Ghosts in the Graveyard by Lyra Marlowe

The Courtship of Utopia Miner by Linda Gilman

Bottom Line:  “Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right.”  ~ Oprah Winfrey

 

Favorite Book of 2013

Barbara Vey -- December 30th, 2013
Favorite Book of 2013

Favorite Book of 2013

Everywhere you look are Best of 2013 Book lists.  I’d personally have a hard time picking a best book.  I like books for all kinds of reasons.  Great characters, favorite setting, best theme, terrific cover.  And there’s all the different genres, it’s like pitting apples against oranges or picking your favorite child.

Personally, I’m all about how the book makes me feel.  Was it interesting, fun, adventurous, exciting, sexy, romantic?  Did it have a good ending because nothing ruins a book more than a crappy ending.

So, I decided to take the pressure off of me and give you all the power.  You decide your top 10 books favorite books of 2013.  Just post the title and author and I’ll add them up and let you know the results on Thursday.  You have until then to vote.  Anything goes just as long as it’s a book published in 2013.   The 10 books with the most votes win.  It can be any genre, any format. So let the voting begin.  One vote per comment.

The winner of the Angie Fox and Friends giveaway is Joelle BB .  Please email maggie@maggiemaegallagher to claim your prize.  The winner of the Harlequin Hotreads giveaway is Christie T .  Please email anna_robinson@harlequin.ca for your prize. 

Bottom Line:  Favorite – a thing regarded with special preference.

Merry Christmas!

Barbara Vey -- December 25th, 2013
7 of 9 of the brothers and sisters

7 of 9 of the brothers and sisters

It has always been a family tradition to get together on Christmas Eve.  Being from a very large family is always a challenge, but we mostly manage to make it to my sister’s house.  Thirty-four of us were there, but we really missed the twenty-eight who weren’t.

 

 

 

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The nieces and nephews

The nieces and nephews

Great nieces and nephews

Great nieces and nephews

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Bottom Line:  Here’s wishing you and yours the very best of everything.

New Releases Tuesday!

Barbara Vey -- December 24th, 2013

I’m sure everyone is busy with their final Christmas rush.  Forgotten gifts bought and wrapped, tree trimmed, cookies baked and all the last minute touches being done.  Most are probably on their Christmas break already, so just a few books being released this week.

As a special treat, Angie Fox and Friends (Susan Donovan, Kim Law, Robin Kaye, Leslie Langtry, Diane Kelly, Kathleen Bacus, Kyra Davis, Jana DeLeon, Amanda Brice, HP Mallory, Gemma Halliday), as part of the 12 Days of Christmas book launch on Amazon, would like to giveaway all 12 days ebooks to one reader.  12 Days of Christmas Shorts!
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One commenter will be chosen and posted the day after Christmas.  Winner can email the author directly for their prize.

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The Dom Project by Heloise Belleau and Solace Ames (Carina Press)

The Furnace by Timothy S. Johnston (Carina Press)

Journey of Wisdom by Shawna Thomas (Carina Press)

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Love Me Not by Reese Ryan (Carina Press)

Bottom Line:  Don’t forget to put out the milk and cookies for Santa tonight.

My Year in Review

Barbara Vey -- December 19th, 2013
Ft. Lauderdale writers in January

Ft. Lauderdale writers in January

Thanks to Facebook, I was offered to look back through 2013 to the highlights of my year.  Keep in mind that this is Facebook’s take as it uses the number of views, comments and shares, but all in all it looks like I had a pretty good run.

I spent January in Florida, visiting authors and talking at writer groups.  Believe me, this is very exciting for someone from Wisconsin.  Sunshine everyday, talking books and meeting new people.  My dream month.

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February I received a box of chocolates anonymously.  Yes, they were on my porch with no card.  This is a first for me, but a very happy one.  I still don’t know who they were from, but I’m forever grateful.

 

 

 

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6th-anniversary

March was the Anniversary Bash for Beyond Her Book and the party went on for 6 days with over 22,000 comments.  It’s one of my most tiring, but fun weeks of the year.

 

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Angie Fox's table at the luncheon

Angie Fox’s table at the luncheon

April is my Reader Appreciation Luncheon.  Over 250 readers showed up to welcome over 35 authors to Wisconsin.  It looks to be even bigger in 2014 and we have only 100 tickets left with over 60 authors.  My dream event has come true.

 

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Receiving the RT Award

Receiving the RT Award

 

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May I received the Melinda Helfer FairyGodmother Award from RT Magazine.

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Celebrating with Andrew

Celebrating with Andrew

 

 

June I celebrated with my son, Andrew, who received his Master’s Degree in Fine Arts.

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Lunching with readers and writers at RWA

Lunching with readers and writers at RWA

 

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July I got to meet up with all my buddies from RWA.  It was a 24/7 lovefest.

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August I finally got a passport.  I’ve wanted one all my life and turned out to be a really big deal for me.

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September I participated in my first PW Webcast For the Love of Romance with Esi Sogah, Senior Editor, Kensington Books, Deb Werksman, Acquiring Editor and Editorial Manager, Sourcebooks Casablanca and Diane Moggy, Vice-President of Series Editorial, Harlequin Books.  Amazing women, great conversation.

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Visiting Hogwarts

Visiting Hogwarts

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October I finally got to use my passport to visit England.  I spoke at Oxford, met a real live Duchess, visited Hogwarts and still managed a day trip to Edinburgh.  An unforgettable experience.

 

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My son Keith and his family

My son Keith and his family

 

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November I spoke to the MORWA (Missouri Romance Writers) group and as a bonus got to see my son and his family in St. Louis.

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This kind of sums up my year.

This kind of sums up my year.

December I lamented on all that had been going wrong (washing machine broke, failed my car emissions, been sick with a cold for weeks). But all the people I’ve grown to love came through reminding me of all the things I should be grateful for.  Thanks everyone for the messages, calls and cards.  I do know I’m blessed and sometimes we just have to sit back and remember all the good times.  So, thanks for reminding me Facebook, seems like you’ve become almost an online diary for me.

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Bottom Line: Reflect upon your present blessings of which every man has many – not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some. ~ Charles Dickens

New Releases Tuesday!

Barbara Vey -- December 17th, 2013

It’s snowing here…again.  I feel like I should have invested in snow shoes this year instead of boots.  The good news for me is that I don’t have to go out in that mess.  I can just sit home, nice and cozy and read to my hearts content.  My TBR pile overfloweth and all is right in my little corner of the world.  Even with that said, it’s time to peruse the new releases because a bookaholic can never have too many books.

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His Enchantment by Diana Cosby (eKensington)

Snow White And The Vampire by Marina Myles (eKensington)

Size Matters by Robyn Peterman (eKensington)

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Gardens Where No One Will See by T.C. Mill (Carina Press)

Beyond Texas by Ann DeFee (Carina Press)

Murder in Mystic Cove by Daryl Anderson (Carina Press)

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Confessions of a Bad Bridesmaid by Jennifer Rae (Harlequin KISS)

Texas Outlaws: Jesse by Kimberly Raye (Harlequin Blaze)

The Dimitrakos Proposition by Lynne Graham (Harlequin Presents)

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Happy New Year, Baby Fortune! By Leanne Banks (Harlequin Special Edition)

Forged in the Desert Heat by Maisey Yates (Harlequin Presents)

His Ideal Match by Arlene James (Harlequin Love Inspired)

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In His Arms by Yasmin Sullivan (Harlequin Kimani Romance)

Dead by Wednesday by Beverly Long (Harlequin Intrigue)

White Lace And Promises by Debbie Macomber ( RHPG – Ballantine)

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Friends – And Then Some by Debbie Macomber  (RHPG – Ballantine)

Love and Devotion by Jove Belle (Bold Strokes Books)

Like Jazz by Heather Blackmore (Bold Strokes Books)

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Under Her Spell by Maggie Morton (Bold Strokes HeatStroke Editions)
Rush by Carsen Taite (Bold Strokes Books)

The Flesh Cartel, #12: Paradise Island by Rachel Haimowitz and Heidi Belleau (Riptide Publishing)

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Lost and Found
by ZA Maxfield (Riptide Publishing)
Christmas Kitsch by Amy Lane (Riptide Publishing)
Iron & Velvet (Kate Kane, Paranormal Investigator #1)  by Alexis Hall (Riptide Publishing)

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Inch by Inch (The Professor’s Rule, #3) by Heidi Belleau and Amelia C. Gormley (Riptide Publishing)
Mindscape by Tal Valante (Riptide Publshing)
In Discretion by Reesa Herberth (Riptide Publishing)

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Shadowdance by Kristen Callihan (Forever, Mass Market)

Dragon Awakened by Jaime Rush (Forever, Mass Market)

Temptation Bay by Anna Sullivan (Forever, Mass Market)

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All He Needs by C.C. Gibbs (Forever, Mass Market)

Reaver by Larissa Ione (Grand Central Publishing, Mass Market)

Law Man by Kristen Ashley (Forever, Mass Market)

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Secrets of a Gentleman Escort by Bronwyn Scott (Harlequin Historical)

The Camelot Series 4-Book Bundle by Ruthie Knox  (LoveSwept)

Secrets on the Sand by Roxanne St. Claire (South Street Publishing)

Bottom Line:  Next Tuesday is Christmas Eve already…how did that happen so fast?

Naughty & Nice

Barbara Vey -- December 13th, 2013

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Last year I was lucky enough to attend this event, but this year we have Cub Reporter Maggie Mae Gallagher on the scene.  Maggie Mae graduated from the University of Tampa with a bachelor’s degree in music. Continuing her education, Maggie received a master’s degree in history from the University of Missouri, St. Louis but writing has always been a passion. As a teenager she wrote reams of poetry, but realized her true love lay with creating characters and stories. Maggie Mae adores exotic worlds of mythic beings, folklore and fairy tales. She currently resides in St. Louis with her two furry felines, Guinness & Isabella and her debut novel, Annointed, will be available February 2014.

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Indie bookstore Rose’s Bookhouse in Saint Peters, Missouri held its annual Naughty and Nice Booksigning Event this past Saturday, December 7th. The event has been dubbed a “Girls Night Out” and boy was it ever. Readers mingled with some of their favorite Erotic and Romance Authors, sipping wine and nibbling on fabulous appetizers from their sponsor Stefanini’s.

Reader Gena Cardinale said she, “loved the rosesintimacy and variety of authors, that getting
a chance to hear all the different stories the authors had made it a truly unique experience.” For the small price of the admission ticket, readers had the chance to win baskets of prizes, loaded up on signed books from their favorite author and helped out a good cause. One of the raffles even had a Kobo Tablet up for grabs. The proceeds from all the raffles were donated to Books For Soldiers.

roseWhen you glanced around the Elk’s Lodge, what you found were women, enjoying the
evening with their best gal pals, and talking about books. Rose’s Bookhouse has long been a champion of the romance genre and this event, while on the more risqué aisle of romance, truly displayed the passion and zeal Rose’s has for the genre. USA Today Bestselling Author, Jade Lee commented, “While it was fun having a naughty cake, what was supremely awesome about this event was the opportunity to talk books and romance with readers.”

For Readers who love romance, the Naughty and Nice Event hosted by Rose’s
Bookhouse should be on your must list of events to attend. Plans are already underway for next year’s event, so mark your calendars for the first Saturday in December.

Bottom Line: The best event to pick up a little something for yourself at Christmas.

Author Creates Charity of Bookgiving

Barbara Vey -- December 11th, 2013

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It always warms my heart to hear of authors taking up charitable causes.  Recently I heard of Anna DeStanfano’s Hearts for Hearts program and I talked with her about it.

BV:  What is Hearts for Hearts?

AD:  Hearts for Hearts is the realization of a dream of mine—to inspire myself and others to reach out into our communities and make a difference in our own back yards. I’m a writer. I spend a lot of time working alone and talking online with other writers and readers. But I love and write about community and what it really means to me: loving your friends and neighbors, sharing their ups and downs, and being part of their lives, especially when the road gets rocky. Being there, showing up in a crisis or when there’s a need, that’s everything.

In short, Hearts for Hearts challenges participants to give books they already own to assistance groups and others in their communities—recipients who can’t afford to purchase books of their own. Even if you have very little time and money—even if you have only a few books to give—you can participate in this exciting program.

BV:  Why did you start this particular program?

Authors Sandra Elzie and Debbie Kaufman unload books and homemade cookies to Georgia based mobile home park

Authors Sandra Elzie and Debbie Kaufman unload books and homemade cookies to Georgia based mobile home park

AD:  I was talking with Nancy Berland, my publicist, about my past and what inspires me to write the emotional things I do and how I’m hoping to see readers encouraged by my characters’ challenging journeys and happily-ever-after endings, to pay the experience forward to people in their families and community. That’s when Nancy said, “I had a thought last night. Have you ever considered …”

Fast forward a few months, and Hearts for Hearts has become this amazing way for
people to reach out and brighten the lives of others—building community, one story at a
time.

BV:  How are groups chosen?

Local hair salon offers free haircuts for the needy at the same event

Local hair salon offers free haircuts for the needy at the same event

AD:  We’re asking readers to choose who to donate to. What’s important to your community— that’s where you can make the most difference. There’s a list of helpful tips on the Hearts for Hearts program page on my website. Some examples of donations already made and ideas for you include:

• Participating in a holiday party thrown by a local business in my area (my hair salon donated cuts to the residents of a mobile home park near us, and I brought along home-baked cookies and books donated be me and author friends).

• Donating books to a community center for foster kids (several YA author friends are helping me do that this holiday!).

• Taking books to facilities for the homeless, sober living, seniors, veterans, battered women, etc.

• Contacting your YMCA for ideas, which I’ve done, and my family and friends and I will now be helping seed senior and children’s libraries there for members, many of whom live on fixed incomes.

BV:  Who can get involved and how?

AD:  That’s the beauty of this! Anyone who loves to read and has books to share can make a difference. All the info you’ll need can be found here. And we’d LOVE to hear about your ideas and donations (and share your pictures!) through my Anna DeStefano Author Facebook page.

BV:  What are your goals for the Hearts for Hearts program?

AD:  The sky’s the limit for how far we can take the program. It’s really up to readers and fans, how long we keep this going. But to start, we’re challenging ourselves to have 1,000 books donated by Christmas, and we’re already well on our way. Wouldn’t it be great if by the end of the year we achieved a Hearts for Hearts book donation project in all fifty states?

I know many other authors do a lot of charitable things.  Please feel free to list your charity in the comments.  I encourage everyone to find something they believe in that can help others and support it. 

Bottom Line:  Giving back is something we should all think about throughout the year and not only in the holiday season.

New Releases Tuesday!

Barbara Vey -- December 10th, 2013

 

I know this is only the beginning of winter, but I feel like I’ve been cooped up in this house forever.  How is it that summer passes in the blink of an eye, but winter seems to hang on forever?  Good thing new books are released every week to help ease the pain of winter.  Nothing like escaping to a nice, warm place while the fireplace blazes.

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The Principle of Desire by Delphine Dryden (Carina Press)

Blade to the Keep by Lauren Dane (Carina Press)

Elect by Rachel Van Dyken (Forever, E-Book)

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Branded by Étaín by Jianne Carlo   (Taliesin Publishing)

Don’t Touch by Barbara Taub (Taliesin Publishing)

Frostbitten by Becca Jameson   (Taliesin Publishing)

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How Zombies Stole Christmas by Sidney Bristol  (Taliesin Publishing)
Starry Night by Lea Griffith  (Taliesin Publishing)
The Hardest Ride by Gordon L. Rottman (Taliesin Publishing)

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Unmasking the Wolf by Christy Gissendaner  (Taliesin Publishing)

Ignited: Roman Holiday Book 5 by Ruthie Knox  (Loveswept)

Love the One You’re With by Lauren Layne  (Loveswept)

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Crazy For You by Juliet Rosetti  (Loveswept)

Blue Lines: The Assassins Series by Toni Aleo  (Loveswept)

Three Broken Promises by Monica Murphy ( RHPG – Bantam)

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The Great American Bachelor by Adrienne Staff  (RHPG – Loveswept)

The Last American Hero by Ruth Owen  (RHPG – Loveswept)

Taming The Pirate by Ruth Owen   ( RHPG – Loveswept)

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Hannah’s Hunk by Sandra Chastain (RHPG – Loveswept)

Imaginary Lover by Sandra Chastain (RHPG – Loveswept)

Winter Bride by Iris Johansen  (RHPG – Loveswept)

Bottom Line:  A pirate book!  Yay!  Ok, I’ve got a thing for pirates, who’s your favorite kind of hero?

Harlequin Community Open House

Barbara Vey -- December 6th, 2013

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It’s that time of year again when Harlequin opens their doors to the community for readers and authors to mingle at the annual Harlequin Open House.  Next week is their annual Open House Extravaganza in the Harlequin.com Community where they will share season’s greetings and holiday stories, recipes, fun and games with their readers and authors.

Monday:  Harlequin Historical, Love Inspired, Love Inspired Historical, Heartsong Presents

Tuesday:  Non-Fiction, PRESENTS, KISS, INTRIGUE

Wednesday:  Harlequin Desire, Blaze, Kimani, Carina Press, COSMO

Thursday:  Harlequin Special Edition, Superromance, Medicals, American Romance, Harlequin Romance, and Harlequin Heartwarming

Friday:  Harlequin Nocturne, Romantic Suspense, Love Inspired Suspense, TEEN and Single Titles

So mark your calendar and head over to Harlequin next week for a holiday blow out.

Bottom Line:  Happy St. Nick!