The Slayer’s Redemption with Marliss Melton

I cannot believe I missed posting for the entire month of October. I believe I created a smattering of Facebook posts and Twitter tweets, but they don’t end up here. Anyway, I wasn’t idle. In October, I finished working on The Slayer’s Redemption, written by bestselling author Marliss Melton and edited by yours truly.  I created the digital files, and the book went live around October 12. I am currently creating the print files so there will be a paperback version available by Christmas.

This is Book 1 in The Warriors of York series set in the 1100s. Book 2, The Black Knight’s Reward, will be out in the spring of 2016, which I will also edit. And I’m rather excited to be co-writing Book 3, The Crusader’s Challenge, which will be out by the middle of next year. Working with this talented author has been a blessing and is helping me grow as a writer.

The Slayer's Redemption #14b Final (small) copySUMMARY

Having cut his baby from the body of his dead wife, Christian de la Croix, known across the land as the Slayer, only adds to the rampant, lurid rumors concerning his violent misdeeds. Now, he desperately needs a wet nurse to keep his son alive, but the people around Helmesly Castle fear him, putting baby Simon’s life in peril.

When a stranger who calls herself Clare Crucis volunteers to nurse the newborn, Christian’s relief overwhelms him. But it does not last long, for Dame Crucis tells contradictory stories of her past. Is she really an angel of mercy—or the agent of one of his enemies, sent to destroy him?

Clare Crucis is, in fact, Clarisse du Boise, a lady being forced to kill the Slayer in order to keep his enemy, her stepfather, from executing her kinswomen. At her very first encounter with the Slayer, Clarisse questions the terrible rumors that abound about him. Certainly, his reputation for ruthlessness is well founded, but she remarks a sadness in the warrior and a longing to be loved that she had not expected. Still, to save her family, she must carry her plan to completion. But as her heart quails and she delays, the Slayer grows ever more suspicious. Is there a way she can save the lives of her loved ones while seeing righteousness prevail? All she needs is a champion.

(This is a thoroughly revised and expanded version of Danger’s Promise, previously released only in print.)

Available for purchase at Amazon and Barnes & Noble and everywhere fine digital books are sold.

Thunderclap for Finder of Lost Love

It’s new to me, not only Thunderclap but also the innovative form of entertainment that this Thunderclap is promoting, called Flashpoint Finds. With Flashpoint Finds, collections of short stories, you can discover new writers while playing an online game and ultimately win prizes.

I’m in this Flashpoint Finds collection of short stories called Finder of Lost Love, with a story titled “A Gambler’s Heart.” I invite you to join our Thunderclap and then, when the book is published, October 2, grab a copy and play to win! Meanwhile, you can take a look around the playground, where you’ll search for clues, receive puzzle pieces, and ultimately unlock the vault to win a prize.

You can preorder the book now at Amazon.

New things can be confusing. Watch the Flashpoints Find video for more info.

An Impassioned Redemption at Amazon

An Impassioned Redemption by Sydney Jane Bailyby Sydney Jane BailyI have not posted since Spock’s death. Not because I have been in a Star Trek fan funk, though there was that, of course. Mostly, however, I have been distracted by my impending divorce from a stranger. Hey, how is that for a new book title? Divorce from a Stranger.

Actually, my soon-to-be-ex didn’t start becoming a stranger until he announced he wanted to divorce in December. He began morphing like a 59-year-old mutant turtle (minus the ninja part), but still was sort of recognizable while around the house. Sure, he had his teeth capped and started streaking his brown hair with blond. But it was after he moved out and realized I was no longer useful to him (cooking, laundry, cleaning, other fringe benefits–should I be waggling my eyebrows suggestively?) that he started acting as if we hadn’t known each other for 24 years. He literally signs emails to me with “Thanks” and then his full name. I am not kidding. Very strange.

ugly mutant turtle

Yup, that about sums up my soon-to-be-ex.

And, as I said, this whole divorce thing was not really in my plan for this spring so it has been a major distraction to the creative part of my brain, not to mention the other side that would like to have a secure future, or at least a future with a roof over my head and some hearty chow once a day. So even after much delay, I am super pleased to announce that An Impassioned Redemption is now up at Amazon, and will be available elsewhere after a 90-day exclusivity with the ‘Zon’s Kindle Select program.

Part of an historical romance anthology last year, called Lost in a Kiss, this standalone novella is an offshoot (also called a “bulge,” which is not the most attractive word, I grant you that), featuring two secondary characters from An Inescapable Attraction, Book 3 of the Defiant Hearts series. The multi-author anthology is no longer for sale. I think I am the last of the authors to get my individual novella published, but I am also the only one divorcing a mutant turtle . . . I mean, a husband.

Synopsis of An Impassioned Redemption:

Self-made woman, Jo Holland answers to no one. She runs a successful saloon and bordello, keeping off the streets women with few opportunities in life. Unlike her girls, she neither needs nor wants any man. That is, until she meets the wickedly attractive and intriguing Jameson Carter.

From atop his gambling riverboat, Jameson rules what he sees, and he has his sights set on one delectable lady. His odds of winning Jo are suddenly stacked against him, when a series of unexplained events puts more than his heart in danger. They threaten his life and that of the woman he wants to make his own.

I always love to hear from you. If you get a chance, let me know what you think of the cover, the story, the likeness of the turtle to my husband. Anything really that you want to chat about, I’ll listen.

Leonard Nimoy–aka Spock–Has Passed

Leonard Nimoy as SpockI couldn’t let the passing of Leonard Nimoy, at age 83, go by without a mention of this wonderful actor, who also seemed to be a nice human being. He was one of my childhood idols, or rather, Spock was. Yes, Captain Kirk was sexy and glib and swashbuckling even, but Spock had brains, mystery, height, and a dry wit.

For an overview of his life, go here to CNN.

I’m sure it will be said all over the Internet and the world, but Nimoy did, indeed, live long and prosper. And he brought that inspiringly simple or simply inspiring phrase into our lives where it will remain, along with “that is illogical” and “fascinating.” The TV series, the movies, and the actor’s portrayal of the Vulcan science officer have all withstood the test of time. I’m certain Star Trek will continue to entertain and provide thought-provoking discussions for generations to come.

Farewell, Mr. Spock.


Love Historicals Valentine’s Day Hop and Giveaway

Love HIstoricals Valentine Logo At last–it’s the big day for love and lovers! If you’re here, then you’re probably taking part in our Love Historicals Valentine’s Day Hop and Giveaway. And you’re looking for the information you need to enter to win the grand prize of $100 Amazon gift card. Good luck!

(Note: At the end of this post, you’ll find the links to the rest of the stops on this blog hop.) If you leave a comment telling me the most romantic words you have ever heard (perhaps “Darling, I’ll vacuum the entire house”), I’ll enter you in my giveaway to win the Prequel to the Defiant Hearts series, An Intriguing Proposition.

An Improper Situation by Sydney Jane BailyI’ve been asked to give the most romantic scene in my featured novel for this Valentine hop, An Improper Situation. That’s a tough one, but here goes, and, of course, it contains the answer you’re looking for, the hero’s name:

Charlotte heard the door knocker and Gerald’s footsteps in the hall, and she put down her book on the parlor table. However, preparing herself for an unexpected late-night visitor and suddenly seeing Reed, without a coat, his hair soaking wet, standing in the doorway was another matter.

There was no preparation for the feeling that started deep inside her, for the quickening pace of her heartbeat.

What on earth was she waiting for? This man wanted to marry her! She stood up and nearly leaped into his arms.

Gerald discreetly bowed out, closing the door behind him.

“Reed, what is it? You look as if . . .,” she trailed off, unable to say what his expression meant for she’d never seen it before, not on Reed’s face nor on any man’s. “Has something happened?”

“Charlotte,” he cut in, closing the space between them and taking her in his arms, mindless of the damp state of his clothes. He dropped a kiss on her parted lips, “Won’t you marry the man who loves you most in this world?”

She was thunderstruck. “You love me?” Her voice was little more than a whisper.

He looked equally shocked at her words. He’d finally guessed at the problem but couldn’t believe that was all there was to it. Still, here was his proof that she hadn’t known how he felt. “Of course I love you.”

“You never said it,” she told him, sagging with relief and feeling she would disgrace herself any minute by outright weeping. He loved her. She could marry him. She sniffed loudly.

He pressed her close against him, understanding finally that the only obstruction had been his inability to recognize and speak the love he felt. Charlotte had let him into her heart and then waited bravely, even refusing his proposal. And he’d nearly let a shadowy memory stand like a giant in his path.

“I didn’t think I needed to say it,” he murmured, taking her face in his hands. “In truth, I resisted saying it, thinking I could save a small part of myself from being completely in your power. It hasn’t worked. But I honestly didn’t realize that was why you were refusing my proposal. I thought I stated my case from all angles.”

“Like a lawyer!” she exclaimed, pushing away from his chest and searching for a handkerchief in her sleeve.

“But I am a lawyer,” he said exasperatedly, handing her a linen square from his own soggy pocket. She took it, dabbing at her eyes before scrunching it tightly under white knuckles.

“But I am a writer, and I deal in words, and I need to have them spelled out for me—precisely,” she added, sniffing again. “I was beginning to think you could never love me because of Celia.”

Reed looked surprised. “You’re a smarter woman than I deserve.” Then he lifted her chin, looking directly at her, his cobalt eyes ablaze with dark emotions. “Let me be precise. Charlotte Sanborn, I love you with all my heart.”

She felt a tear slip down her cheek. “And I’ll need to hear those words a lot, not just once,” she told him feeling a lump in her throat.

He smiled at her tears and her sniffles, and he pulled her to him again. “Is this my independent lady writer, brought to crying by a few words?”

“Not just any words, Reed, the words I’ve waited all my life to hear.”

He sobered, gazing down into her glittering green eyes. “The words I’ve waited all my life to say,” he assured her. “And I’ll tell you often, I love you.”

She reached up and kissed him. It was a long moment later when he lifted his head.

“Not that I wouldn’t mind hearing them myself,” he added, the hint of a smile on his lips.

She beamed at him, feeling the bliss of being encircled in his arms and for the first time knowing she was also surrounded by his love. “I love you Reed Malloy, and yes, I will marry you.”