Just Imagine

Just Imagine

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Welcome to my blog! Pull up a chair, grab a cup of coffee and read what's on my mind. I've a vicious sense of humor, an apprecation for romance and a mad addiction to writing.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Pirates. Highlanders. Romance. The Seafaring Rogue (Pirates of Britannia)



Love pirates? Highlanders? Sweeping romance? If so, my contribution to the Pirates of Britannia World, The Seafaring Rogue, is now available for pre-order! A MacLomain Series: A New Beginning spin-off, this follows the tale of Fraser MacLomain as he navigates piratehood in 15th century Scotland.

About the Book

Left for dead on the shores of Scotland, Fraser MacLomain falls in love with the healer who saves him. Yet Elspeth MacLauchlin has deep dark secrets. Hidden truths rooted in a century old family feud. A vendetta that is soon resurrected by vicious enemies who steal her away during a late night pirate attack.

Bent on saving her and reaping revenge, Fraser embraces a life of piracy. Cutthroat, out for blood, he relentlessly pursues his nemesis long after rumor has Elspeth dead. Long after he abandons love for bitterness. But even a hardened heart can be thawed, as he soon discovers when catching his foe begins a high seas adventure ripe with passion, intrigue, and treasure.

Purchase at the following online bookstores.

Barnes & Noble- https://bit.ly/2IYrP7d

Also available at iTunes


A Sneak Peek Excerpt

“The plaid looks good,” she remarked, eying Fraser with appreciation.

She had worked tirelessly to mend his ripped and tattered MacLomain tartan. Now he wore nothing but the plaid wrapped around his waist and over his shoulder. Another means to test her, she was sure. Because there was no finer sight than Fraser dressed as he was with his chiseled muscles bared to the world.

“I think he enjoys his vanity fed,” Innis muttered as he grinned and rolled his eyes at the hill behind them. A hill that had hosted many a lass over the past few hours. Lasses, quite assuredly, out for a late-afternoon stroll to enjoy the view. And though they would claim otherwise, that view had nothing to do with the lovely bay. 

Even Audric was aware of the women, his cheeks turning red when he dared a random peek over his shoulder.

“Well, I would see Fraser’s vanity challenged,” Elspeth murmured, not speaking of his good looks as she picked up one of several swords Innis had brought down. One suited to her size. She met Fraser’s eyes in challenge. “Do ye accept, then?”

His brows perked in interest. “Ye know how to fight?”

“Of course,” she replied, wide-eyed. “’Twould be foolish in these tryin’ times not to, aye?”

“I suppose ‘twould,” he concurred, a new spark in his eyes. One, she realized, born of a man who appreciated a woman who knew how to defend herself. 

“So will ye then?” She made a show of testing the weight of the blade and even executed a few novice swings to prove she was good but not that good.

When a small smirk hovered on his lips, and his eyes narrowed on her grip, she knew he had her figured out.

“’Tis a good enough method making your opponent think ye cocky rather than talented,” he acknowledged. “But you’ll want to work some on your expression.”

“My expression?”

“Aye, ‘tis that of one with confidence, not insecurity.” He stepped close and brushed the pad of his weapon-roughened thumb between her brows. “It should furrow here as though ye are concentrating verra hard indeed.” Then he grazed it along her lips. “These should be turned down and mayhap wobble a wee bit as ye begin to doubt yourself. As if ye just realized ye took on more than ye can handle facing off with your particular enemy.”

After that, he dusted the outer edge of her brow indicating her eyes. “And these, of course, are your best weapon if you’re fighting a lad. Use them to look him over as if sizing him up.” A knowing gleam lit his eyes. “A look as if you’re trying to determine his weaknesses but realize mayhap there’s something to be attracted to instead.”

“I willnae do that,” she rebuffed, chuckling despite herself. “’Tis foolish.”

“I dinnae know.” Innis stroked the braids in his beard as he contemplated Elspeth. “I think Fraser is right. Especially when it comes to ye.”

“’Twill make me seem daft!” she retaliated.

“’Twill make ye seem as your rival likely expects ye to be,” Fraser counseled, still close enough that she could feel his heat. “A lass with a proper eye to pleasing a lad instead of a disobedient hellion trying to be something she’s not.”

When she narrowed her eyes, he merely shrugged and grinned. “I didnae say I agree with that mindset.” He stepped back and held his sword at arm’s length. “I’m more the sort that enjoys a wee lassie with a bit of backbone.”

“Good then.” She straightened said backbone and held her blade at the ready, wishing she wore trousers instead of a skirt.

They eyed one another and circled before she came at him fast. When he dodged, she spun quickly, came in low only for him to leap back with a grin of approval.

“Ye use your size to your advantage,” he praised. “And keep your movements quick but small.”

“Aye.” She ducked beneath the swing of his blade. “Douglas always said to conserve my energy. Especially when fighting a seasoned warrior.”

Innis guffawed. “Well, you’re certainly fighting such now, lassie!”

“Your brother’s words were wise,” Fraser conceded as they continued battling. While she knew he was holding back some, she could tell by his random nods of approval that it wasn’t as much as he thought it would be.

Yet as they continued crossing swords, she saw something shift in his eyes moments before he came at her a little harder. While she initially thought he was competitive and could not help himself, she soon realized it was for another reason altogether.

He truly cared about her well-being and wanted her to fight the best she could.

So as they fought and her energy waned, he offered not only praise where it was due but pointed out her every weakness. An elbow held too high on a swing. The incorrect angle of her knee when lunging. Breathing too heavily when she should be trying to measure her breaths for certain movements and speed. His was a well-balanced dance. A very specific manipulation of the body that included a mixture of thought out planning and spontaneity. 

By the time they were finished, she was sore in places she had never felt pain.

“Thank ye,” she managed, as she tossed aside her blade, planted her hands on her knees and tried to catch her breath. “I will be feeling this for days, I imagine.”

“’Tis good.” He smiled. “’Twill give ye a better idea of what needs strengthening.”

 Though not a lewd look by any means, as their eyes held, she got the strongest impression he longed to test other muscles as well. To see how limber she really was.

Barnes & Noble- https://bit.ly/2IYrP7d

Also available at iTunes  






Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Pirates of Britannia. Plunder by Knight by @Mia_Pride.



Ahoy mates! Another Pirates of Britannia Connected World series book has arrived!! Congratulations to Mia Pride on the release of Plunder by Knight! Be sure to join Mia and a host of other authors (including me!) at her Facebook Group today, May 29th to celebrate. Lots of giveaways!!

About the Book

Torn between duty and dreams….

Born of Irish pirates but raised to be an English Knight, Thomas Esmonde is a man stuck between two opposing worlds. His lingering Irish accent never afforded him many friends at the English court, nor has he ever wished to conform to their overbearing rules and stuffy societal expectations. Reoccurring dreams of ancient treasure and a yearning for life on the high sea are at odds with his hard-earned honor and knightly duties.

But when he is sent to Ireland to aid the English cause, he is immediately thrust into his previous life as his ship is captured by the infamous Pirate Queen of Ireland, his grandmother. Faced with the temptations of gold, adventure, women, and plunder, his loyalties are split between his family and his queen… then split further when he captures his enemy’s beautiful, yet mischievous daughter.

Longing for freedom and adventure…

With her mother dead and her father fighting the Irish rebels, Katherine Bingham is often left lonely and unattended, spending her days watching the pirates of Clew Bay from afar and dreaming of adventure. Born an English lady but raised on Irish soil, she wishes to aid the people she considers her own, even daring to steal from the pirates to do so… until the night she is caught by the most handsome, yet frightening pirate she has ever seen.

Born to be enemies, Katherine and Thomas cannot deny the attraction and deeper connection pulling them together as they discover their shared goal: Freedom for Ireland. But, to keep Katherine for himself, Thomas will have to defy his queen, his family, and his country. One act of revenge led him to the love of his life, but can he keep her without losing his honor, or his head?

Purchase at AmazonBarnes & Noble and Kobo.
Also available at iTunes.

Excerpt

“Who are ye?” he asked, with a touch of warning in his voice. Pursing her lips, she looked away and folded her arms over her chest as best she could with his body so close. All that did was direct the man’s lecherous gaze downward as her breasts pushed up higher.

“Who are ye?” she asked in return, raising a blonde brow. She was being bold, she knew. In truth she was so frightened she worried she may wet herself, but cowering was not something she would easily do.

“My name is Sir Thomas Esmonde,” the man answered easily, and she was quite shocked he would do so. Sir? He claimed to be a knight, yet all the queen’s men were in the north fighting her people… not her people, she reminded herself. She was meant to be English, yet she truly thought of the Irish as her people. “So… who are ye, lass?”

The truth was on the tip of her tongue. If he was truly an English knight, he was not her enemy. He would not dare hurt an English woman. And yet, how could she believe such a thing? She had seen him down in Clew Bay just hours before. Not only that, he had been calmly conversing with the Pirate Queen. The man was a bloody liar. He was a pirate and would snap her neck if he knew she was the only daughter of the man whose life was spent trying to destroy pirates. Only one name continued to float through her mind. The one she obsessed with daily. One so feared that mayhap he would be much too afraid to harm her.

“My name is Katherine. Katherine O’Malley,” she said, holding her nose up to him.
He snorted and scowled at her. “Not bloody likely, love.”

“’Tis the truth!” she stomped her foot on top of his, hoping to make the man at least flinch but apparently, he was immune to any pain she inflicted, though even in the dark the claw marks across his left cheek did look angry.

“Lie to me again and I will silence yer tongue… with my own.” His brows waggled, and her heart stuttered in her chest. He was a fine-looking man. She had never kissed a man and had always dreamed of kissing a pirate… but it had to be the pirate of her dreams. It had to be the one who stole from the rich to give to the poor, like her favorite Robin Hood. She did not know who this man stole for, but it was most definitely not for the needy people scattered across the land. And she certainly was not prepared to kiss him.

“I am not lyin—”

His mouth came down on hers, hard. She gasped and pushed back against the tree yet did not try to push him off as hard as she could. Instead, her hands went up to his chest in a feigned attempt to rebuke him. His breath tasted quite sweet, and she reveled in the hard warmth of his muscular chest and the thumping of his heart against her palm. What sort of brute kissed a lass he did not even know? A Pirate, of course.

Purchase at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Kobo.
Also available at iTunes.

PARTY TIME!!


Be sure to join me and a host of other fabulous authors at Mia Pride’s Facebook Group to celebrate the release of Plunder by Knight today, May 29th. Lots of giveaways!!!



Monday, May 21, 2018

Highlanders, Time Travel & Romance. Avenged by a Highland Laird by Sky Purington.



Hello all! It’s time for more Highlanders! The last book in The MacLomain Series: A New Beginning has finally arrived. As usual, when I finish writing the last book in a series, I got teary. It’s never easy saying goodbye. Nevertheless, it was awesome spending time with all the characters one last time and of course, following Bryce and Jessie’s journey. Naturally, they took me on a whirlwind adventure full of twists and turns I won’t soon forget. 

Be sure to join me on book tour for a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card! More info below.

About the Book

Laird Bryce MacLeod will do anything to see Scotland’s history saved. Even if it means chasing down Jessie, a twenty-first century lass who might very well be his enemy. What he discovers when he catches her, however, is someone with deep, dark secrets and unanticipated intentions. Hidden truths so remarkable a whirlwind adventure through time begins.    

First, they find themselves in league with Angus Óg MacDomhnaill, Lord of the Isles, a noble Scottish captain rumored in some circles to be a pirate. Danger and intrigue abound as they help the Scots capture three English supply ships and deliver their cargo to the Scottish army. As they do and more mysteries are unveiled, attraction ignites and roars to life.     

Caught in the throes of newfound passion, they finally join King Robert the Bruce and face off with the English once more at the Battle of Byland Moor. Yet there’s another enemy as well. An evil whose sole purpose is meant to test their hearts in a way neither saw coming. An enemy determined to rip Jessie away from Bryce forever. Will the power of love be strong enough in the end? Or will the curse that threatens Scotland be too much to overcome? Find out in Avenged by a Highland Laird, the epic conclusion of The MacLomain Series: A New Beginning.

Purchase at Amazon

Excerpt

She didn’t miss the flash of disappointment in his eyes before he managed a small nod and held out his hand. “Aye then, lass, step around me…Ma would want me to work with you for the sake of our country.”

Jessie clenched her teeth, disappointed that the small bridge they had built was so swiftly knocked down. That he was so quick to dislike her again. But that wasn’t to be worried about right now.

Well aware time was running out, she carefully turned, so she was facing the wall, took his hand, and began moving. Step by step, she made her way along the ledge to the point where they would have to share a space.

She met his pale golden eyes and tried to ignore the flustered way they made her feel. “Are you ready for me to pass?”

“I am,” he lied.

She could tell by his guarded expression he was nowhere near ready. Not because he was a coward but because he was aware of his effect on her. More so, how much he liked it. His wariness had nothing to do with plummeting to their death but allowing her close enough that she could pass. Close enough that he would feel the heat of her skin.

So a bridge might have been knocked down, but something else was taking its place. She worked to steady her breathing at the quickly escalating attraction between them. Now was most certainly not the time.

Yet she had known this would likely happen, didn’t she? That it would be unavoidable. At least for her. How else could it be considering the secrets she still kept? Secrets she was foolish enough to have thought she could keep from him for his own safety. But then she had very little real-life practice when it came to attraction. Especially the sort she felt being so close to Bryce. He was the real thing and far more than she anticipated.

However, now definitely wasn’t the time for a chat about deep dark secrets that would only upset him further.

They needed to keep moving.

Though tempted to close her eyes so she didn’t drown in those piercing golden orbs of his again, she kept them open and made her move. With her hand braced on the left side of his waist, she began moving along the front of him. She was halfway across and directly in front of him when he touched the side of her waist, lowered his lips close to her ear and whispered, “Dinnae move, lass.”

His words floated through her mind. “There is a stranger standing across the way.”

I feel him,” she responded as her eyes rose to his. “He doesn’t see us yet.”

Though she thought it was her breath that caught when they’re eyes met, it might have been his. Alarmed by the impact of being this close, she nearly teetered back, but his arm slipped around and pulled her even closer.

Unable to breathe at all now, she didn’t look away. She couldn’t if she wanted to. “Let me go, and I’ll hide us without him knowing.”

Unmistakable heat gathered in his eyes. Heat and lust he warred to contain, but she saw it…then she felt it as his arm tightened. The pale gold flecks in his thickly lashed eyes only grew brighter with curiosity. While she could tell herself that he simply wondered how she would get them out of this, she knew better. His curiosity was entirely focused on the strong chemistry between them.

Despite the waterfall’s intense spray and the fact an enemy could very well be staring at them right now, she was human enough to get caught up in what was happening between them. How erotic it felt to finally be pressed against his long, hard body. 

To finally lay her hands on the physical form of someone she had known for so long.

“No,” she whispered, suddenly frightened as heat swept through her and pooled below. “Not now. Not yet.” She swallowed hard and shook her head, suddenly lost in memories. No matter how real this might be, she had long trained herself that she couldn’t trust lustful feelings when it came to him. That she should not indulge in them. “Let me go. Please.”

Though her response could simply be that of a woman choosing to reject what flared between them, he seemed to sense there was more to it. His arousal turned to protectiveness as his brow furrowed in determination and his grip tightened ever-so-slightly. She couldn’t help but wonder if he was inherently responding to her past. To those moments he was so much a part of without ever knowing.

Purchase at Amazon



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