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Version 2Verlin Darrow is currently a psychotherapist who lives with his psychotherapist wife in the woods near the Monterey Bay in northern California. They diagnose each other as necessary. Verlin is a former professional volleyball player (in Italy), unsuccessful country-western singer/songwriter, import store owner, and assistant guru in a small, benign spiritual organization. Before bowing to the need for higher education, a much younger Verlin ran a punch press in a sheet metal factory, drove a taxi, worked as a night janitor, shoveled asphalt on a road crew, and installed wood flooring. He missed being blown up by Mt. St. Helens by ten minutes, survived the 1985 Mexico City earthquake (8 on the Richter scale), and (so far) has successfully weathered his own internal disasters.

Book: Blood and Wisdom

Website: www.verlindarrow.com

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/author/verlindarrow

INTERVIEW:

Q: Congratulations on the release of your latest book, Blood and Wisdom. To begin with, can you gives us a brief summary of what the story is about and what compelled you to write it?  

A: Here’s a blurby description: When Private Investigator Karl Gatlin takes on Aria Piper’s case, it was no more than a threat—phone calls warning Aria to either “stop doing Satan’s work” or meet an untimely demise.  But a few hours later, a headless John Doe bobs up in the wishing well at Aria’s New Age spiritual center near Santa Cruz.  Aria had ideas about who could be harassing her, but the appearance of a dismembered body makes for a real game changer.  And what Karl Gatlin initially thought was a fairly innocuous case turns out to be anything but.

Dispatching former rugby superstar and Maori friend John Ratu to protect Aria, Karl and his hacker assistant Matt are free to investigate a ruthless pastor, a money launderer on the run, some sketchy members of Aria’s flock, and warring drug gangs.  With his dog Larry as a wingman, Karl uncovers a broad swath of corruption, identity theft, blackmail, and more murders. But nothing is as it seems, and as the investigation heats up, Karl is framed, chased, and forced to dive into the freezing water of the Monterey Bay to escape a sniper.

Against the backdrop of a ticking clock, Karl races to find answers. But more murders only mean more questions—and Karl is  forced to make an impossible choice when it turns out Aria’s secret may be the most harrowing of all.

Blood and Wisdom fell out of me once I got going—telling me what sort of novel it wanted to be. The reason I sat down to see what would happen if I began a PI mystery was that the genre draws on my strengths—plotting, dialogue, and understanding people. The themes are simply the things that matter most to me.

BloodandWisdom_w12516_750

Q: What do you think makes a good mystery? Could you narrow it down to the three most important elements? Is it even possible to narrow it down?

A: Well, obviously, an important element is managing the mysterious/suspense element so the surprises make sense in hindsight, even though they weren’t discernible at the time. Another feature of a successful mystery is appropriate pacing. It’s easy to go too fast when plot is driving a genre, and it’s also easy to bog down in exposition when a complex story can’t stand on its own. Lastly, I need to care about what happens to the main characters, which usually means I need to like them. In real life, I don’t necessarily enjoy being around people who are mixed-up in crime and violence, so an author has to do some work here.

Q: How did you go about plotting your story? Or did you discover it as you worked on the book?

A: I’m a fairly extreme example of a seat-of-the-pants plotter. I start with one major event and a small cast of potential characters. In Blood and Wisdom, a body is discovered on the property of a spiritual teacher’s compound, and there’s a PI who gets involved. That’s all I started with. From there, one thing leads to another, often driven by dialogue that seems to fall out of the characters’ mouths. Everyone gradually defines themselves as I write myself into and then out of dilemmas and seeming dead ends. I’m at my most creative when I’ve put myself directly behind the eight ball.

Q: Tell us something interesting about your protagonist and how you developed him or her. Did you do any character interviews or sketches prior to the actual writing?

A: Karl embodies a lot of the same traits as myself, which is handy. I’m psychological-minded, and by virtue of writing suspense, I also see the world as a profusion of tangled power cords that require sorting and deciphering. So I created a protagonist who thinks the way I do—up to a point. He’s ignorant about a lot of metaphysical stuff that I’m well-versed in, but I still remember what it was like for me to stumble onto it. I’ve never done stand-alone character sketches. My imagination is a counter-puncher, not an initiator.

Q: In the same light, how did you create your antagonist or villain? What steps did you take to make him or her realistic?

A: More than one reprehensible character lurks in the pages of Blood and Wisdom, and they all stem from real experience. As an experienced psychotherapist, I’ve worked with, heard about, or ran from narcissists, sociopaths, and psychotic people. My villains, I think, come across as real as a result.

Q: How did you keep your narrative exciting throughout the novel? Could you offer some practical, specific tips?

A: I think that employing dialogue that announces something intriguing is a good tool for creating a cliffhanger chapter ending.  In a PI mystery, too, you need periodic action, and this needs to be something original, or at least interesting, aside from how it moves the plot forward. I think it’s also important to write a series of mysteries within the big mystery–small puzzles that get worked out gradually.  The reader needs to yearn for answers on a regular basis.

Q: Setting is also quite important and in many cases it becomes like a character itself. What tools of the trade did you use in your writing to bring the setting to life?

A: This is a weak spot for me in a rough draft. Since I’m working on the fly to develop characters and resolve the plot, I don’t do much with setting besides naming it, so I need to go back and flesh it out later. Even then, I have to work hard at this. I have trouble imagining detailed settings (I’m hopeless when I try to write science fiction), so I adapt places I’ve spent time in, and try to focus on the sensory experiences available there.

Q: Did you know the theme(s) of your novel from the start or is this something you discovered after completing the first draft? Is this theme(s) recurrent in your other work?

A: The same themes sneak into all my books, even when I try to keep them out–how people change. What underlies ordinary reality? Why do people commit crimes? How does love develop out of trauma? I set out to write a straight PI mystery, but my damned characters kept injecting extra depth into everything.

Q: Where does craft end and art begin? Do you think editing can destroy the initial creative thrust of an author?

A: No, I’ve never experienced good editing interfering with the creative process–quite the opposite, actually. Any book that becomes more readable, more coherent, and tighter serves creativity better.

I don’t feel I’ve ever crossed over from craft to art, personally. And that’s fine with me. I’m a big fan of craft.

Q: What three things, in your opinion, make a successful novelist?

A: Perseverance, insight, and craft.

Q: A famous writer once wrote that being an author is like having to do homework for the rest of your life. Thoughts?

A: Yup. It’s a curse and a blessing–like everything else. The difference between my happiness quotient when I’m engrossed in a project or I’m not is marked. I need to write to make my life work. If I were designing myself, would I choose this scenario? Probably not. But I could say that about tons of things, and were I completely in charge, in the long run, I’m sure I’d be a big mess.

Q: Are there any resources, books, workshops or sites about craft that you’ve found helpful during your writing career?

A: I’ve mostly worked out things on my own, by writing a lot of manuscripts, the majority of which were unmarketble–for good reason.

Q:  Is there anything else you’d like to share with my readers about the craft of writing?

A: Trust your subconscious. It knows more than you do about some aspects of writing, and it has your best interests at heart.

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Title: The Spiritual Protection Prayer
Author: AnnaBel Silvers
Publisher: XlibrisUS
Genre: Self-Help
Format: Ebook

 

 

In the name and through the power of the blood of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, Holy Spirit take control of our circumstances,situations, and conversations, through faith as we surrender our wills to You for this day.

All praises, honor, glory are given to our Father, God, whose love and presence,we have entered for He is worthy, mighty, and awesome to be praised.

First Stage, by surrendering your will to Jesus, who is Lord and seated at the right side of our Heavenly Father, you will relinquish control of any situation or circumstance for an entire day. The Holy Spirit who lives inside of you because you believe that Jesus Christ is your Savior has been given permission to control your life. You will no longer be in charge because the Holy Spirit searches all things, yes, the epitome of the Heavenly Father, God, Himself.

Second Stage,now that your life is prioritized, you may think all of Hell has been released on you. Why is this? Satan knows that you will begin to learn to have power over him, as well as his minions. It is God’s responsibility as our Heavenly Father to help you..now! He has been waiting for such a time as this. Satan is angry with you and will now indefinitely try to destroy you. However, you must remember, greater is He Father (God) in you than he (Satan) is in the world. You will learn how to live and deal through the power and the guidance of the Holy Spirit with your adversaries.

Third Stage,each and every day, you must commit and submit yourself to our Heavenly Father in the name and through the blood of Jesus Christ- through His Word. God only promises protection one day at a time. God knows the beginning and ending of your life- You Do Not! Jesus came to seek, save and protect us one day at a time from being eliminated by the adversary. You will learn what God’s Holy Spirit has to say to you on a daily basis. Once you start reading God’s Word, it will increase your desire to want to study to find out what God’s will is and what He is all about. You will learn to trust Him. Your life with His Word will speak to each and every one of your situations, regardless of what circumstances you are under. Aren’t you glad about that? Praise God!

Fourth Stage, if you do not know how to believe that the prayer will work or somehow feel inadequate that your faith isn’t strong enough, pray to our Heavenly Father in the name and through the blood of His Son,Jesus Christ, to increase your faith and belief. Difficult situations and circumstances will occur anyway. You will experience anxiety and despair because you are making non-spiritual choices in human flesh. The Holy Spirit will not and cannot coerce your will. Why not surrender your will to an Omnipotent, Omniscient, Omnipresent Heavenly Father? He already knows all about you. You will be delighted to make Him your Lord. He is faithful to the end. He loves you. You will learn how to become obedient and renew your mind daily. Praise God!

Now through placing your trust in God, through the power of the blood of JESUS CHRIST, and the guidance of the Holy Spirit, your life will blossom with spiritual and physical delights. His promises of what is best for you will materialize. It is beyond your imagination and scope of vision of what His will for your life will become over what you believe it should be. You will delight to be obedient and a servant to God’s will.

Remember, if you have never been through anything, how can you teach others? We are our brother’s keepers. That is why Jesus came to save and give us life more abundantly.You will have grace for the pressures of the world, mercy for your failures as a human being and to keep both your heart and mind from pride, God’s Peace. Hallelujah

You Are The Righteousness Of God In Christ Jesus

PURCHASE HERE

 

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<!– [if supportFields]> FILLIN "" <![endif]–><!– [if supportFields]><![endif]–>I am a senior citizen who will
be celebrating 71 years of life.  I live
in Cincinnati, Ohio with three adopted young men.   When the book is read, one will learn what
my life has become. 

 

GIVEAWAY

ANNABEL IS GIVING AWAY A $25 GIFT CARD!

  
Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins July 23 and ends on August 3.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on August 4.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone! 

ENTER TO WIN!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Title: Seasons and Memories
Author: Stanley Evans Abbott
Publisher: XlibrisUS
Genre: Biography
Format: Ebook

 

 

My autobiography begins in 1939. It illustrates a rather exciting journey. However, writing this in my seventies, some events and parts of my life have been forgotten or just plain omitted due to the fact that I thought them either boring or unnecessary. As you read through these memoirs, you may discover a new awareness that every person has their own individual journeys and quests. May mine have an impact on you! I hope your own journey is as enlightening as mine was. “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why” (Mark Twain).

PURCHASE HERE

 

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<!– [if supportFields]> FILLIN "" <![endif]–><!– [if supportFields]><![endif]–>I am a senior citizen who will
be celebrating 71 years of life.  I live
in Cincinnati, Ohio with three adopted young men.   When the book is read, one will learn what
my life has become. 

 

GIVEAWAY

stanley IS GIVING AWAY A $25 GIFT CARD!

  
Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins July 23 and ends on August 3.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on August 4.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone! 

ENTER TO WIN!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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Title: Divine Choreography of Redemption: Setting the Eternal Saga in Time

Author: William E. Jefferson

Publisher: Hybrid Global Publishing

Genre: Historical Fantasy

Divine Choreography of Redemption explores the story of redemption as divine drama advanced by acts and agents that transcend time and space. The novel is set beyond the Storied Sea on the ancient Isle of Estillyen, far from everywhere yet mystically near. There, a troupe of Message Makers from the seventeenth century mysteriously arrives to grapple with the theme in today’s context.

At the heart of the novel, a battle brews between technology’s driven existence–aided by modern devices and algorithms–and life centered in Scriptures ancient narrative. The story line begs the question: Does meaning truly abide in the saga of redemption’s divine choreography, or in media’s discarnate realm?

PURCHASE HERE

Having lived and worked in London, Moscow, and New York, today author William Jefferson writes from a Civil-War era cottage in the rural Ozarks. He is author of Messages from Estillyen : A Novel of Redemption and Human Worth, and owner of Storybook Barn www.Storybookbarnmo.comJefferson holds an MTh in Theology and Media from the University of Edinburgh and an MA in Communications from the Wheaton Graduate School. 



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michael okon headshot

Michael Okon is an award-winning and best-selling author of multiple genres including paranormal, thriller, horror, action/adventure and self-help. He graduated from Long Island University with a degree in English, and then later received his MBA in business and finance. Coming from a family of writers, he has storytelling in his DNA. Michael has been writing from as far back as he can remember, his inspiration being his love for films and their impact on his life. From the time he saw The Goonies, he was hooked on the idea of entertaining people through unforgettable characters.

Michael is a lifelong movie buff, a music playlist aficionado, and a sucker for self-help books. He lives on the North Shore of Long Island with his wife and children.

His latest book is the YA Fiction/Monsters/Thriller Monsterland Reanimated.

WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS:

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK

Welcome Michael! Can we begin by having you tell us how you got started writing about monsters and werewolves? Did the movies influence you? Books?

Michael: Thank you! I was watching an classic 80s/90s movie marathon one weekend – The Goonies, Jurassic Park, Gremlins, Back to the Future – and the thought popped in my head, why isn’t there a theme park with zombies. I called my brother to tell him about the idea and he said, NO, it has to be a theme park with werewolves, vampires AND zombies. I started writing the story that night.

Do you find writing about monsters and werewolves comes natural to you or did you struggle sometimes?

Michael: Because I’ve been a fan of classic movies and books for so long, writing about monsters was actually quite easy. Once I figured out the character arcs and twists, the story just flowed from my subconscious.

Can you describe the theme park in your book, appropriately called Monsterland?

Michael: Well, think the Magic Kingdom, but instead of Adventureland, Fantasyland, Main Street and Tomorrowland, Monsterland has the Werewolf River Run where guest can be chased by actual werewolves, Zombieville where guests can safely walk among the dead in a suburban town, and Vampire Village where guests can rock out with the vampires in an all-new rock show. Couple these lands with Main Street USA, which are dilapidated buildings with burnt cars and wreckage along the avenue, and you’ve got a pretty interesting theme park. Oh, and I forgot to mention the Copper Valley Inn, which is the haunted resort hotel on property. You’ll learn a lot about this spooky place in Monsterland Reanimated.

Can you tell us a little about the main characters of your book?

Michael: Wyatt Baldwin is a teen who is trying to learn to fit in with the “cool kids” in his new hometown Copper Valley. He’s the protagonist of the story, plus he loves zombies. Melvin is the outcast of the group and Wyatt’s best friend. He has a fascination with werewolves. Melvin has a huge arc in the story. Then there is Howard Drucker, the awkward third of the trio of heroes. Howard has a crush on Keisha, and he loves vampires.

They say all books of fiction have at least one pivotal point when the reader just can’t put the book down. Can you give us one of those pivotal points in Monsterland Reanimated?

Michael: Imagine being chased by The Glob in the middle of desert. This scene was my favorite to write.

Will there be a follow up book to Monsterland Reanimated?

Michael: Of course! I’m already finishing up Monsterland Beneath. I have three monsters, plus more, in book 3!

About the Book:

monsterLand2_cover_23

Title: MONSTERLAND REANIMATED
Author: Michael Okon
Publisher: WordFire Press
Pages: 250
Genre: YA Fiction/Monsters/Thriller

After Monsterland has imploded, the entire world is thrown into chaos. World leadership is gone, economies have collapsed, and communications are non-existent. Wyatt must go beyond the boundaries of his small town to reestablish contact with the outside world, and alert the government about a traitor-in-chief.

During his journey he discovers a new threat released from the bowels of the defunct theme park.

When an army of relentless mummies, a life-sucking ooze called The Glob, and a hybrid reanimated Behemoth rise from the depths of Monsterland, who will survive?

ORDER YOUR COPY:

Amazon

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Playboy-vintner Michael Santino’s world is about to go up in flames. The largest wildfire in California history is racing straight for his precious vineyards.
But the fire isn’t what’s making him hot and bothered— it’s Shae.
The beautiful firefighter he’s never forgotten is on the scene, re-igniting sparks and making it impossible for him to think straight. Now he can’t remember why he broke up with her.
Firefighter extraordinaire Shae Hayes is determined to evacuate Santino Winery.
Strong and proud, and from a long line of heroes, she’s not taking no for answer—even if it is from Napa Valley’s own Mr. Charming. The devastatingly handsome sweet- talker is the only man who turns her insides to jelly.
When the wind changes and Engine 6 is stationed at Santino Winery, Shae and Michael begin to melt in close quarters, and their chemistry ignites.
Is it the firestorm outside or the flames smoldering in their hearts that has them clinging to each other?
They’ll soon have to decide if 
LOVE IS A WILDFIRE. 
Coming August 7th!
PRE-ORDER HERE:


 

EXCERPT:

Michael Santino’s stomach churned in his dream. The wind ruffled his thick, dark hair, causing him to roll over and bury his face in the pillow. The Egyptian cotton felt cool and refreshing as he snuggled deeper into the pillow’s plush, downy comfort.

Another gust raced over his shoulders, and he turned his head and cracked open an eye. Five feet away, his thin bedroom curtains whipped and slapped against the walls on either side of the window.

Should he close the window?

Michael didn’t have the energy to think about it. Set on getting at least two more hours of sleep, he changed position, patting the pillow and pulling the top sheet higher, but still couldn’t get comfortable.

His stomach rolled again, but now the hairs on the back of his neck stood up too. Somewhere deep down in his half-sleep state an inkling tried to rouse him. Then his roiling gut reached up to his consciousness and shook him.

Wake up! Wake up!

Another hot, bitter-smelling gust surged through the window. This one hit Michael’s face precisely under his nose, and he inhaled.

Fire.

Just as he registered the thought, his cell phone rang a few feet from his head. It banged and rumbled, vibrating against his bedside table, and shocking him out of his last bit of sleepiness.

Michael fumbled for the phone and finally grabbed it.

“Dad.” It was more of a question than a greeting. What the hell’s going on?

“Get to the winery. Now,” his father replied, without a trace of panic.

Wide awake, Michael kicked off the covers and got out of bed. Listening to his dad rustling the phone and shouting in the background, he went to the window and pulled back the curtains.

Tension wound up from his feet to his calves, spiraling into a tight tornado, ripping up his spine. Michael tried to process the sight. An ungodly orange glow lit the night sky. His hands started to feel like they were going numb. He didn’t recognize his world. It was like he fell asleep in Napa and woke up on another planet.

 

Former San Francisco radio disc jockey Kate Kisset is passionate about telling great stories.
After playing thousands of Pop, Country, Rock and Oldies tunes, for her primarily female fan base, she changed her tune and became an author.
Just a Kiss is the first book in her Wine Country Romance romance series,
She lives in Northern California and Santa Barbara with her family and rescue pup “editor” Luciana Parmigiana, where she hikes, reads, listens to music, and drinks wine.
WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS
Want to read the first three books in the series? You can purchase them at the links below:

 

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SUNSET BEACH by Christine Donovan, Contemporary Romance, 255 pp., $3.99 (kindle)

Title: SUNSET BEACH
Author: Christine Donovan
Publisher: Independent
Pages: 328
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Until Sarah Kennedy is 17 she spends her summers at Sunset Beach with
a close-knit group of friends. They are young, carefree, and just a tad
wild—as teenagers tend to be. They share secrets, love, and a deep
connection. But that final summer life as the friends know it begins to
unravel. Domestic violence plagues one family, one of their group
becomes a criminal. Sarah severs all ties with her friends and
disappears.

Fifteen years after the summer that changed Sarah’s life forever, she
receives a letter about a reunion. Can she bury her fears, curb her
anxiety enough to attend and finally unearth who attacked her and
changed the trajectory of her life forever? She also hopes to reconnect
with the one man she gave her heart and soul too—Jake Ferroli. She
wonders if his life faired any better than hers after his family tragedy
and his downfall into drugs and alcohol.

Sarah locks down her demons and rents a cottage for the summer. To
her surprise Jake is still single and they slowly reconnect. But so does
her attacker. He is good at eluding the police. Somehow he has gone on
attacking women for fifteen years without so much as being a suspect.
Pictures, letters, and threats against Sarah now come on a daily basis.
Jake and Sarah hire a private detective and as they get closer and
closer to revealing the identity of the perpetrator, he strikes. Can
Jake rescue Sarah before their so-called friend rapes her, or even
worse, kills her as he did to his last victim?

When he stepped close to her, he could
sense rather than see her retreat. Her eyes darted toward the door then back to
him, suddenly full of panic. Why? It tore at his heart to know someone or
something traumatized her.
“Why don’t you take a seat and relax.” He
reached out to touch her arm and she all but flinched. It appeared ever so quickly,
but he noticed it. On an exhale, he let his arm fall, frowned at her behavior,
and sat down. She slid into the chair opposite him.
“So, tell me why you’re so jumpy? Is it me,
or are you always like this?” God, please
don’t let it be me.
She shot him a look of disbelief. “I’m not
jumpy.”
Clearing his throat, he said, “If you say
so.”
“Have you kept in touch with everyone?”
The desperation he witnessed flash in her
eyes nearly broke his heart. “Yeah, I have. You know about Drew and Alyssa. Tom’s
a doctor. He works at Mass General and he’s still single. Dylan lives in his
mother’s old house. He’s a local cop here. Had a nasty divorce a few years
back, but I don’t know all the details. I believe he has one kid, a daughter. Mitch
is a detective with the Boston Police Department. He married a fellow police
officer and they have two kids. Heather married some guy last year, I haven’t
met him.
Tracy’s single and I think she’s the only one
not coming.”
“I had no idea what became of anyone.”
Tears pooled in her eyes. “Except
Charlotte.” She closed her eyes and took a deep
breath. “You took me by surprise when I saw you pull up today.”
Exhaling, he said, “Likewise. I didn’t
expect you to come after fifteen years of silence.” He ran his hands threw his
hair and asked, “Why did you come?”
“I don’t know. I thought it was time.”
She had a strange, vacant look on her face,
so Jake decided to drop the subject. He would push for more answers later. And
he wanted answers. Something had been eating a hole in his heart all these
years, and he wanted to know why.

 

Christine Donovan is giving away
five free e-copies of SUNSET BEACH!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • Five winners will be chosen via Rafflecopter
  • This giveaway ends midnight June 29.
  • Winner will be contacted via email on June 30.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!

ENTER TO WIN!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js

Christine Donovan is an International Bestselling Author who writes
romance that touches the heart, soothes the soul and feeds the mind. She
is a PAN Member of RWA and belongs to Novelist, Inc. and Rhode Island
Romance Writers.

She lives on the Southeast Coast of Massachusetts with her husband,
four sons, four cats and one spoiled golden retriever. As well as
writing contemporary romance, she also writes historical and paranormal.
All her books have some degree of suspense. In her spare time, she can
be found reading, painting or gardening. She loves to tackle DIY
projects.

WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS:

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK

 

 

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