Smart Girls Read Romance





Smart Girls Read Romance -- so do the bestselling and award-winning Authors who write this blog.
Join them as they dish about Books, Romance, Love, and Life.






Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Let's Get Real: New Year Advice by @JoanReeves

Everyone seems to usher in the New Year with good intentions.

They write lofty resolutions and tell how they're going to exercise everyday, give up sugar, carbs, and fats and generally become this perfect human specimen.

Heard it. Done it. Got the tee shirt. Want my tee shirt?

I'm going to do things a little different by giving you some advice that's actually helpful. No, I didn't write what follows. It arrived in my Inbox a few years ago, and is by the late, great George Carlin who was as wise as he was funny.

5 Tips from George Carlin

1. Throw out nonessential numbers. This includes age, weight and height. Let the doctor worry about them. That is why you pay him/her.

2. Keep only cheerful friends. The grouches pull you down.

3. Keep learning. Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever. Never let the brain idle. "An idle mind is the devil's workshop." And the devil's name is Alzheimer.

4. Don't take guilt trips. Take a trip to the mall, to the next county, to a foreign country, but NOT to where the guilt is.

5. Always remember, Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments
that take our breath away.

If you don't send this to at least 8 people—who cares?

That's it. Short and sweet advice, which I think is the best kind.

Something else that is short and sweet—and also very sexy—is my New Year's romance short story, Last Chance New Year.

A Moment in Time is all that's needed for Love to be Revealed in this highly sensual romance short story.

Cheyenne Smith, better known as C. A. Smith to her co-workers, decides New Year’s Eve is the perfect time to give in to insanity.

She plans to  throw herself at Luke Harper, the man she loves, and hope he catches her. Will Luke be her safety net?

Last Chance New Year is only 99 cents at Amazon Kindle. Short, romantic and sexy. Perfect for an evening's read.

My New Year Advice

Of course, I have to give a bit of New Year advice too. Mine is what Thoreau said: "The world is too much with us. Simplify."

Monday, January 14, 2019

NO RESOLUTIONS -- INSTEAD, GOALS!


By Bea Tifton


This time of year, so many blogs are about resolutions. We don’t need no stinkin’ resolutions. I mean, how many of those do you really keep? It’s mid-January, and I would be willing to bet some of them have fallen by the wayside. No, I didn’t make resolutions. I made, dramatic pause, Goals.

”That’s merely semantics!” I hear you cry. Or is that one of the voices in my head? Hmmm. Never mind. But no, they’re different. Resolutions are vague, wispy things. Goals are noble, strong, and achievable. Trust me, I’m a Librarian. I know stuff.

First, to welcome in the New Year, I scrubbed my house clean. Not only putting up clutter, but polishing and straightening. I vacuumed up enough pet hair from my couch to assemble another small pet. I used Windex, People! It sparkles.

Now, for my goals.

Writing
(I use a computer)
Goal number one: Write!  I want to stop talking so much about writing and write more. I plan to have my book ready by the end of February. We’ll see.  But no more procrastination, watching old mystery shows and calling it research. Well, except for “Murder, She Wrote”. I mean, really.

Goal Number two: Exercise!  I’m going to go to my exercise classes five times a week. I take yoga and Tai Chi. That makes me sound very together and artsy, doesn’t it. Well, you haven’t seen me there.  Still, as I stretch and contort my body into downward dog and go through mystical Asian movements each week, who knows what amazing thoughts will spring into my head?

Tai Chi

Goal Number Three: Eat healthy food. While I was cleaning out, I went to the grocery store and stocked up on good, healthy food. In a fit of optimistic exuberance, I bought zucchini. But no kale! I mean, I haven’t gone mad.

Goal Number Four: Don’t Overcommit. I’m going to learn to say negative to all the zillions of requests to steal my time. Even some of the more noble ones. It’s hard. I still want to change the world. And, like me, most of my friends do, too, so they ask for my help. But I can’t do it all. So I’m practicing. Enunciating. Checking facial expression for sincere, but firm regret. “Nooooooooo. No! No?” Okay, I’ll keep working on it.

So, this morning, I was so excited about my new life that I was fairly bouncing on my toes. I got in my cute little car, Sunny (what do you mean you don’t have a name for your car. What on earth do you say when you talk to him?), and tootled to the pet food store. I was going to get so much done today! I had lists. I had resolve. I had…GOALS.  So, I bounded out of Sunny, full of great intentions. And was pulled abruptly back into my car.

Goal number 52: Unfasten seatbelt before attempting to exit vehicle.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Honeymoon and murder by Paty Jager


Had I known all those years ago when my brother offered my help as a prep cook at a remote horse ranch that it would spark a book over forty years later, I would have paid more attention.

My latest Shandra Higheagle release came to me when I’d decided to write another series using the area where I grew up. I wanted to introduce the new character in a Shandra book. But how did I get Ryan and Shandra to his neck of the woods?

A honeymoon! At a remote hunting lodge in the Eagle Cap Wilderness. The only way to the lodge is hiking, horse back riding, or flying.  And that is the way it was and still is for the horse ranch I worked at one weekend.

I had spent a year at college and was home working nights at the hospital as a nurse’s aide. My brother was a wrangler at the horse ranch and told the cook there that his sister would help out one weekend when her help couldn’t be there.  I thought it might be fun. However, for the flight in with the cook and supplies, I was stuck in the back with the supplies of a two-seater prop plane.  The fuel fumes and the bouncing was making me sick to my stomach. Then they said, look we’re landing…I raised up to see the side of the mountain, with a deep canyon below and trees coming at us. There was a small strip of grass or a meadow that the plane landed on.
I kneaded bread on an old wooden table like this.
Once there I discovered I was the person who was up first and went to bed last. I had to get things ready for the cook in the morning and clean up everything in the evening. The down time I had during the day, I napped when I would have rather gone on hikes. There was an outhouse and water that trickled out of a pipe that came from a stream of melted snow.

This experience has been embellished and I’ve added a few more amenities and better buildings to Charlie’s Hunting Lodge in my book, Homicide Hideaway, book 12 of the Shandra Higheagle series.

If there was ever a time to test Ryan and Shandra’s new marriage it is their time spent at the lodge.

Have you ever stayed at a remote lodge or place? Did you like it?

Homicide Hideaway

Book 12 in the Shandra Higheagle Mystery Series

Love… Marriage… Murder

Less than twelve hours after arriving at a remote hunting lodge for their honeymoon, Shandra Higheagle and Detective Ryan Greer find a body. Shandra’s cousin had quarreled with the man earlier, and the clues point to her as being the murderer.

Fish and Wildlife State Trooper Gabriel Hawke, arrives and immediately takes a dislike to Shandra’s cousin. But he is willing to work with Shandra and Ryan to discover the truth.


Paty Jager is an award-winning author of 34 novels, 8 novellas, and numerous anthologies of murder mystery and western romance. All her work has Western or Native American elements in them along with hints of humor and engaging characters. Her Shandra Higheagle mystery series has been a runner-up in the RONE Award Mystery category, and a finalist in the Daphne du Maurier. This is what a reviewer had to say about Homicide Hideaway: “The plot of this story really had me thinking in circles…At times the suspense had me completely on the edge and had me setting down my Kindle so I could relax but then picking it up almost immediately to find out what happens.

blog / websiteFacebook / Paty's Posse / Goodreads / Twitter / Pinterest   / Bookbub

Photo source: DepositPhoto.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Famous Lovers in History #romance

Hi everyone,

Thank you so much for visiting Smart Girls Read Romance. Many of the blog posts I've read since January 1st are about 'goals' and 'resolutions' people made for 2019. I try not to set too many goals and set myself up for failure. Many goals are not obtained no matter how hard we try. 

But...if you're still looking for a post about New Years' Resolutions, I'll share my one and only goal for 2019 with you. So...here it is: "Keep my feet above the grass." That's it. Life is complicated and I consider it a great success if I can stay healthy and alive this year. I think it's a great goal for everyone!

My blog post today is about something more palatable - Famous Lovers In History (whether fictional or mythological). Who among us doesn't love to read about true love or soul mates? I hope you find some inspiring love stories below - ones that make you believe in finding love everlasting (or keeping love everlasting).


Cleopatra and Mark Antony
The true love story of Antony and Cleopatra is one of the most memorable, intriguing and moving of all times. The story of these two historical characters had later been dramatized by William Shakespeare and is still staged all over the world. The relationship of Antony and Cleopatra is a true test of love. They fell in love at first sight. The relationship between these two powerful people put the country of Egypt in a powerful position. But their love affair outraged the Romans who were wary of the growing powers of the Egyptians. Despite all the threats, Anthony and Cleopatra got married. It is said that while fighting a battle against Romans, Antony got false news of Cleopatra's death. Shattered, he fell on his sword. When Cleopatra learned about Antony 's death, she was shocked. And she took her own life. Great love demands great sacrifices.

Lancelot and Guinevere
The tragic love story of Sir Lancelot and Queen Guinevere is probably one of the best-known stories of Arthurian Legend. Lancelot fall in love with Queen Guinevere, King Arthur's wife. Their love
grew slowly, as Guinevere kept Lancelot away from her. Eventually, however, her love and passion overpowered her and the pair became lovers. One night, Sir Agravain and Sir Modred, King Arthur's nephew, led a band of 12 knights to Guinevere's chamber where they burst in upon the lovers. Discovered, Sir Lancelot made a fighting escape, but poor Guinevere was not so lucky. She was seized and condemned to burn to death for her adultery. Fear not. Sir Lancelot returned several days later to rescue his beloved Guinevere from the fire. This whole sad affair divided the Knights of the Round Table and weakened Arthur's kingdom. Poor Lancelot ended his days as a lowly hermit and Guinevere became a nun at Amesbury where she died.


Napoleon and Josephine
A marriage of convenience, at age 26 Napoleon took a fancy to Josephine. An older, prominent, and most importantly wealthy woman. As time drew on, Napoleon fell deeply in love with Josephine, and she with him, but that didn't deter the adultery on both sides-their mutual respect for one another kept them together, and their burning passion between them didn't falter, and was genuine. They eventually split, as Napoleon deeply required something Josephine could not give him, an heir. Sadly they parted ways, both bearing the love and passion in their hearts, for all eternity.


Marie and Pierre Curie
This is a story about partners in love and science. Unable to continue her studies in Poland because universities did not admit women, Maria Sklodowska Curie traveled to Paris in 1891 to attend the Sorbonne. Known by the French "Marie," she spent every spare hour reading in the library or in the
laboratory. The industrious student caught the eye of Pierre Curie, director one of the laboratories where Marie worked. Curie ardently wooed Marie and made several marriage proposals. They were finally married in 1895 and began their famous partnership. In 1898 they discovered polonium and radium. The Curies and scientist Henri Becquerel won a Nobel Prize for Physics in 1903 for discovering radioactivity. When Curie died in 1904, Marie pledged to carry on their work. She took his place at the Sorbonne, becoming the school's first female teacher. In 1911 she became the first person to win a second Nobel Prize, this time for chemistry. She continued to experiment and lecture until her death of leukemia in 1934, driven by the memory of the man she loved.


I hope you enjoyed reading about these famous lovers because that's what 'Romance" is all about...love.

I write romance in several genres
Historical Romance
Western Romance
Paranormal Romance
Contemporary Romance
Erotic Romance

As you can see, I'm all about Romance and love writing about characters who might go through many trials and tribulations but in the end, find true love. 

This month I'm featuring one of the books I loved writing - WHERE THE RAIN IS MADE

Recent Five-Star Review
"Where The Rain is Made was a surprising blend of genres. While solidly building on a foundation of romance, it is so much more. The paranormal aspect of time travel and shamanism is painted realistically and establishes the authenticity of the story while allowing modern-day influences to be brought into a past time through the hero's modern perspective. The reader is swept along with the emotions of the characters; fears of impending war, devotion to culture, love of family, horror at the necessary brutality of the Dog Soldier. The plot and characters are well developed and their ties to history and each other ebb and flow logically, but not predictably, securing the reader’s interest until the end."

Blurb:
* Nominated for Bookie Award by Authors After Dark.
* Nominated for Best Romance of the Year
* Time Travel/Shapeshifter
* Western Romance
* Over 35 - Five Star Reviews

A decadent-looking savage has captured Francesca DuVall and her brother Marsh. These days, she spends every waking moment planning escape from the brutal Dog Soldiers' village.

Ethan Gray is a curator at a national museum . . . until he travels through time to help his beloved People. In the Cheyenne world he's known as Meko, leader of the most revered and fearsome tribe of the plains.

Two cultures and two hearts battle. Violence and death haunt their troubled roads, but when kindred souls collide, love prevails against the greatest odds. From the windswept plains of Colorado to the placid life of a curator, their love is fueled by passion and kindled by destiny.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

My History Nut Tendencies...




Hello, I’m Reina… I am a History Nut –
(Hello, Reina…)

I love history but I focus on a bunch of specific time periods (mostly the ‘newer-ish’ eras)…
I love Regency, American Civil War, the Victorian era (all over the world), the rediscovery of Egypt by the West, the Old West, WWI, WWII…

While I was living in Las Vegas with my family we participated in Civil War and Old West reenactments – sooo much fun! I’ll tell y’all some stories later.

But, moving back to Hawaii I knew I was going to miss the events. When I had lunch with an old friend of mine, the archivist of my high school (Yes. I am a complete geek!) she reminded me that the Mission Houses Museum covers the same era.

So off I went and I joined their Living History Program. I did educational tours for groups of adults and children. We dressed up from the era, mostly 1830-40s and took care of the herb garden, played games on the lawn. We even held Candlelight Christmas where visitors would walk through the house and encounter ‘scenes’ of life during the Mission period.

One of my favorite parts of the tour was the Print Shop. Made to resemble the first Print Shop created by the missionaries, it has a reproduction press and two of the chases (printing plates) are set to print the Lord’s Prayer in Hawaiian and a plate from a reading primer.

One of the misconceptions about the Missionaries that came to Hawaii is that they were trying to remove the Hawaiian Language from existence. In fact, they learned Hawaiian on the six month voyage from the Northeast Coast around the southern point of South America.

And when they printed their first Bible, it was in Hawaiian and bound in a fine leather cover and presented to the Queen Regent Ka'ahumanu.

It took ten years for them to translate and print the Bible. They took texts from different languages and some of the words had to be created. The Hawaiian language didn’t have words for concepts like Angels. And even when Doctor Judd translated a Western Anatomy book into Hawaiian, he had to make up a name for Shoulder Blade/Scapula, because it just didn’t exist in their language.

Why am I droning on about this?

The book that I have releasing tomorrow (1/9/19) has a hero who owns a print shop. I did this partially because I love that connection to a great time in my life. Actually using the press during the tours, inking, printing, showing the visitors how to drape the printed sheets up over beams to dry them, then press them flat. I loved that room, it felt like home.

So part of the love I’m trying to share with readers is my own love for the printed word. While Silas’ press is much more ‘modern’ than the reproduction type I worked on, I can almost imagine being in the room beside Silas and Imogene as they fall in love in his little print shop in Bower, Colorado.


Imogene's Ingenuity   by: Reina Torres



Imogene Wigg has loved her life at the foundling home where she was raised. It gave her a loving family and the skills to better her mind and her future. When she finds out that they all have to leave their home, she doesn’t want to go, but Madam didn’t raise her to be a shrinking violet. So, while everyone thinks she’s headed to Bower, Colorado to be a Mail-Order Bride, she’s actually going there to apply for a job… in a print shop. There is nothing in the world so exciting to Imogene as the creation of the printed word and she wanted to help create it.

Printer Silas Hix has been advertising for an assistant, but the one man who inquired about the job hasn’t shown up. Instead, he meets a young woman with a keen mind and an interest in his work. It’s just too bad that a bachelor can’t hire an unmarried woman to work alone with him. What would people say?

But sometimes it’s hard to remember his reservations when he realizes that Imogene is probably the only person in the world he’s ever had an easy time being with, or wanted to spend more time with just to see her smile, or hear anything she has to say.

Well, it turns out that Mother Nature has plenty to say about the two who share a love for printing machines and don’t mind ink stains on their fingers. She’s not above stacking the deck in their favor and suddenly the future’s out of both of their hands and in front of the Pastor.

What does fate have to say now that they’ve met someone who is just their ‘type’?
This book, the ninth in “The Alphabet Mail-Order Brides” series, and is connected to my “Bower, Colorado” Series.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

New Year...New "Age" by Carolyn Hector

New Year...New "Age" 
by Carolyn Hector 


So here we are facing another year—and another year older. My monster-squad keeps going. I believe they're all now taller than me. I wonder if I can use the excuse that I have that I have T-Rex arms when I need them to reach something off a high shelf. 

If your kids are like mine...5'6" and above.... they probably love to make it a big deal. 
Don't worry.. a pair of tongs are a girls' best friend in the kitchen! 




My daughter (you know, the one who moved out and left me home with 6 males in the house!) is approaching the age of my youngest heroine. I’m not sure how I feel about this. It’s just time to age up my characters…which is totally fine by me. One of my favorite books is by Brenda Jackson. Secret Love features a hero of a certain age. I'd never seen it done before. 

I am now older than Jacob/Jake Madaris when he was considered middle-aged back when this book was first published.. 2000 I believe. The cover was that of an older- yet sexy- man. He's gotten a makeover over the years but this is the book I'll always this cover model in my mind.

I've written a few novels with my hero and heroine in their 30s and pushing 40s. They have yet to sell but I also haven't sent them off.......so there's that.




Do you have a favorite author who writes seasoned romance? Check out Barbara Joe Williams who just released A Cougar for Christmas. I adore Karen Booth. She turned me on to the facebook group: Seasoned Romance.
There is also a few websites.articles to check out as well. Love in Panels  and this one from Romance Junkies

Oh how the ideas are rushing to my head for a seasoned story! Especially after attending the RBRM (New Edition) concert last November. My daughter took me as part of my birthday present. As we walked out the door, my 15 year old shouted... "Aw who cares, no one wants to see a bunch of 50-year-olds dance around on stage!" Well let me tell you! They rocked! They still had their moves.

If you are interested in writing seasoned romances, Entangled Publishing recently put out into the cyber world that they're looking for submissions for their new August line.


I have a book that was released back in December. Click here Her Mistletoe Bachelor
If you've had a chance to read it, please consider leaving a review... it helps! ALSO!! ALSO!!! The book was nominated for cover of the month over at All Authors. If you get a sec, take some time out and vote. https://allauthor.com/cover-of-the-month/3577/



Well, that's all for now. 
Happy New Year! Happy Reading and Happy Writing!

XOXO


Friday, January 4, 2019

2019: A New Beginning at Camp Rogers @JacquieRogers



2019: Time to Assess, Set Goals, and Carry On

Last year was chock full of change for Camp Rogers.  Mr R, my IT Guy, finally retired from his day job.  We sold our house in Seattle and bought a house near Owyhee County where my Hearts of Owyhee series is set.

We went from a postage size lot with neighbors in our armpits to a 1.25 acre lot with a huge yard and massive garden, of which we're not sure we're up to tending properly--time will tell.  Our new house is quite a bit smaller but Mr R has a humungous shop, so it all evens out.

Part of our very cold back yard.

All went well until Christmas Day, when our furnace decided to push up daisies.  That's not good when it's 14 degrees outside!  So for the last week, we've had repairmen and installers buzzing over and under our house putting in a new furnace and insulating the ducts.  We had the same outfit put in a hot water recirculation pump (because it took running water for two minutes and nine seconds to get water to the back bathroom) and insulate both the hot water and cold water pipes.  They finally got done today.

This isn't the end of it, either, because Mr R has some electrical things he wants to get done.  Mucho dinero, for sure.  Also, we have to get the bathrooms and kitchen remodeled.  The latter will be quite extensive.  And we still don't have the guest room set up, which is important because I want my friends to come visit.  Time is passing by!  There's nothing like the calendar turning over a new year to remind us of that.

Of course, we had a marvelous Christmas present.  A cat adopted us.  He was meowing and we couldn't let him stay out in the 15-degree weather, so I let him in the house.  He scampered right over to the pantry expecting to be fed.  How he knew where the pantry was, I have no idea.  Then he ate, meowed at Mr R, then jumped on our bed and went to sleep.

Meet Walter, a very confident kitty.
As for writing, well, I haven't been able to get back in the saddle yet, but I'm close.  We've done some brainstorming and I have four possible beginnings.  I might just have to start writing and see what happens, but that generally gets me into trouble.  Oh well, Trouble is my middle name. LOL.

Idaho has beautiful sunsets.
Has it all be worth the hassle and backache?  Yes.  Idaho is beautiful, the people are friendly, and besides, I belong here.  Ultimately, this was a good move for us and yes, I'll start cranking out books soon.

Happy New Year!  And Happy Reading, too.


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Wednesday, January 2, 2019

MAKING A LIST


    
With our New Year comes resolutions and goal setting. Is it that way at your home, too? At the first of any new beginning, I tend to re-evaluate and plan ahead. I’m a big list maker.

In fact, one of the first sentences our youngest daughter uttered was, “Let’s make a list.” I’d just told her we needed to go to the grocery store. Ah, we see ourselves echoed in our children.

Do you keep your resolutions and meet your goals? Here is where I confess I fell short of my goals last year. Life kept interfering and interfering. I’m hoping 2019 will be more cooperative.



First on my list is to finish GARNET, the next in the Widows of Wildcat Ridge Series. These are clean and wholesome books. BLESSING was the second of the series and GARNET is the ninth. These are my only two entries in this intriguing series centered around the survivors of a mining disaster. GARNET is up for preorder and will release on January 16, which would be my mother's birthday.  The universal link for all Amazon stores is http://getbook.at/GarnetWOWR.



Next up will be my new Pearson Grove series. The first, MAIL-ORDER MORIAH, came out in November, also a clean and wholesome romance. The universal Amazon link is http://getbook.at/MORIAH. There will be six more in that series: Felicity, Alexandra, Deborah, Lula, Corrine, and Evelyn. Pearson was the first name of my father. He was always so supportive of my writing and I wanted to do something to honor him.

I also want to write more in the Kincaid, McClintock, and Stone Mountain series. There aren’t enough hours in the day to accomplish all I plan. In the meantime, I'll keep crossing things off my list as they become reality.

Please share your goals and/or plans for 2019.