Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Book Tour: A Touch of Lilly by Nina Pierce Interview & Giveaway

Ex-Chicago detective LILLY D’ANGELO has a secret she doesn’t share with anyone. A master of the one night stand, she’s given up ever finding a soul mate and thrown herself head first into her career. That is, until she captures the wrong alien. Kidnapped and sold into the sex slave trade, she’s shipped into deep space. Barely escaping with her life, Lilly now travels the galaxy working as a bounty hunter using her secret talents to bring down criminals and seeking revenge on the one male who ruined her life. 

Agent DALLAS SAWYER works for deep space’s version of the FBI. After a disastrous mission that left several of his team members murdered, a president executed, and Dallas near death, he’s determined to take down the assassin targeting government officials. When a sexy human female gets between him and his goal, Dallas and his alien partner find themselves on the receiving end of a passionate night they won’t soon forget and a proposition that may very well blow up in their faces.

Because in deep space … true love can happen with just a touch.


Lilly D’Angelo wasn’t expecting a trip down memory lane when she sauntered into the dingy tavern, but the acrid stench and gruff hum of the Friday night crowd carried her back to one of the seedier establishments on Chicago’s south side nonetheless. Except for the clientele, the owner had managed to replicate nearly every detail right down to the blue haze of cigarette smoke and the soft crooning of a jazz band on the corner stage.

Pushing the sour thoughts of home from her mind and focusing on the job at hand, Lilly morphed her features into her sexiest vixen pout and moved gracefully toward the long bar on the other side of the room. Her voluptuous breasts, spilling temptingly from her silk blouse, led the way. The eyes watching her leather-clad ass sashay around the battered tables were clustered on various life forms—none of them human.

Yeah, definitely not Chicago. Hell, this wasn’t even Earth for goodness sake.

“Regent’s ale, straight up, hold the brenic.” Lilly ordered the local brew in English, hoping the two-headed alien behind the bar had a cochlear translator in one of those eight holes that passed for ears. Satisfied when one head nodded, she settled on a stool, making sure her fur jacket and blouse parted just enough to offer a seductive view of her cleavage. She shifted, allowing the black leather skirt to ride up her thigh and expose a little more silky real estate. The reflection she saw in the mirror behind the liquor bottles was every inch a working woman on the prowl. She wasn’t trying to attract anyone in particular, just hoping to mislead the locals into thinking she was some female making a living with her body—which was true—just not as the human streetwalker she impersonated.

Where did you get the idea for the novel?
I’ve always loved science fiction stories. There is just something about the idea that we are not alone in space that completely intrigues me. Throw in a dash of murder and suspense … welllll, I’ll burn dinner and stay up late just to follow the characters’ journeys to save the world. So it didn’t surprise me one morning when my muse woke me with this great story of two humans (and a very sexy humanoid-alien) chasing the same bad guy across the galaxy. Throw in some action, sprinkle with mystery and wrap it all in a sexy romance and A TOUCH OF LILLY was born!

Your title. Who came up with it? Did you ever change your title?
I come up with all of my titles. Since Lilly D’Angelo has the ability to affect males by touching them the title was just sort of … there. And no—since I loved it from the moment it came to me—it never changed.

Since becoming a writer, what’s the most exciting thing to ever happen to you?
Besides actually having my books published for people to read (which is such a hoot)? I’d have to say it’s the people I’ve met on my journey, both readers and writers. I’ve made some wonderful friends that I never would have had the privilege of getting to know if I hadn’t dipped my toes in the publishing world. The other (and this just happened last month) is that one of my books made it onto the USA Today Bestsellers list. Wow (thank you readers)! That was a real kick in the pants, I gotta tell you. Of course I cried and my wonderful family celebrated with me by taking me out to dinner and gushing over that milestone!

What book are you currently reading?
I’m reading the 9th book in the JR Ward Black Dagger Brotherhood series, LOVER MINE. (Of course it’s paranormal romance … my favorite genre.) When I grow up I want to be just like her, she’s such and amazing writer! No one, and I mean no one, has ever held my attention in a series, like JR has. I force myself to read other books in between just so I don’t finish the series too quickly!

What is your writing process?
Hmmm, this is a hard question to answer because it’s changing and morphing as my writing develops. But basically, I’m a by-the-seat-of-my-pants writer. I only have a loose idea of where the story is going when I start, especially when I’m writing a mystery/suspense. With A TOUCH OF LILLY I didn’t consciously know who the killer was until midway through the book. I hope if it takes me by surprise as I’m writing, that it will also surprise my readers.

At a book signing, do you just sign your name or do you write a note? How do you come up with stuff to say?
I always try to write a note when I sign a book. I love to have some twist on the title. I’m still working on what to write when I sign print versions of TOUCH. But like a title, I smile happily when I find the little quip that’s perfect!

What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
There are many readers who don’t know I have multiple sclerosis. I have a dual degree in marine biology and education. I worked in an outreach facility teaching science to all levels of school children for many years. When the ugly disease brought my body to the point where I could no longer stand in front of a classroom, I gave up whiteboards and animal specimens for a keyboard and printer … and I’ve never looked back! I feel blessed to have found another career that allows my science brain free creative license!

AUTHOR Bio and Links:
USA Today Bestselling author, Nina Pierce, grew up in a house full of readers. Nina's discovered the passionate side of romance with her sexy stories. For her, it's all about the sweet scent of seduction mixed with the heartwarming aroma of romance.

Nina resides in New England with her high school sweetheart and soul mate of twenty-eight years and several very spoiled cats who consider her "staff". When she’s not writing she enjoys spending time with her three grown children, one love-sick son-in-law and a heart-melting grandson.

You can keep up with her new books at her website ( or by following her on Facebook ( Twitter (

Nina will be awarding A print copy of HEALER’S GARDEN and author swag (Shipping to US winner only. International winner will receive a $25 Amazon OR BN Gift Card in lieu of print book and swag) to a random commenter during the tour, and a Print copy of HEALER’S GARDEN and $10 gift card to a randomly drawn host (US ONLY).
 The more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here: 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Book Tour: Scent of Salvation by Annie Nicholas Interview

Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher:  Samhain Publishing
Date of Publication:  July 30th, 2013
ISBN: 978-1-61921-748-5
Word Count: 98,000
Cover Artist: Kanax

Amazon    BN   Apple 

Book Description:
Love blooms across species, culture, and time.

Chronicles of Eorthe, Book 1

Stranded in another dimension, on a primitive version of Earth, Dr. Susan Barlow needs to find a way to survive. There’s no electricity, no cities, and to her shock, no humans. Instead, she faces a population of werewolves, vampires and incubi. The people are vicious but she must find her place among them. And live.

An illness is killing Sorin’s pack. As alpha it’s his responsibility to save them, but it’s a battle this warrior doesn’t know how to fight. Then a blue light in the sky brings a creature he’s never seen. She calls herself human, but to him she smells like hope.

Sorin offers Susan a safe haven in return for a cure, but she’s not that kind of a doctor. She’s a doctor of physics, not a physician. Yet as they search for a cure to save a dying people, they find something special—each other.

But even with Sorin’s protection, Susan can’t help but wonder how long she can survive in a world without humans…

Before Susan could explain anything about dimensions and gateways, the door to Kele’s chamber crashed open, and Susan jumped to the balls of her feet, prepared—to what, fight? Was she nuts?

A female blocked the entrance, her muscular physique hinting at enough strength to twist Susan into a pretzel without breaking a sweat. The newcomer flung her black hair over her shoulder.

Rising with grace, Kele straightened her dress before addressing the intruder. “Mother.”

“Daughter, I heard you’ve brought home a stray along with the Apisi alpha.” The female’s stare drilled into Susan, her sneer far from welcoming.

Susan’s breath caught in her throat. Black, soulless eyes ate her gaze. Her fingers clutched the lapels of her jacket as she pulled it closed. She wiped her sweaty palms on her pants and offered her hand. “I’m Dr. Susan Barlow.”

The female shifter narrowed her eyes, nostrils flaring.

Susan withdrew her untouched hand, then hid it behind her back and glanced at Kele. Maybe she should have sniffed her mother instead? She wished someone would give her the Dummies Guide to Shifter Society and a little time to study it.

Kele’s mother crossed the room in two great strides and swung her arm.

Susan did her best impression of a statue. She didn’t budge as the impact of the slap swerved her head to the side and dragged her gaze from mother to daughter. Both of them were flushed with emotion yet at opposite poles of the color spectrum—one dark as an oncoming storm and the other pale as the moonlight.

The back of Susan’s heel caught the edge of the cushion and she landed hard on her back.

The bitter flavor of blood swept over her taste buds. “What the hell?” She rubbed her jaw and glared daggers at the crazy woman looming over her. Just as quickly, she schooled her expression to something less threatening before she insulted the bigger shifter further. With the tip of her tongue, Susan explored her mouth. She didn’t encounter any big gaps, so no lost tooth. A small blessing.

Kele’s crazy mother hovered over Susan’s face and bared her teeth. In beast form, her expression would have appeared fierce, but in human form it seemed terrifying. With an easy grace, she flipped Susan onto her stomach. A bony knee pressed between her shoulder blades, making her kiss the floor. Pain shot across Susan’s upper back and neck.

“How dare you come into my den and not submit to me.”

“She’s not a shifter!” Kele shouted. “You can’t expect her to know how to be polite.”

Something ran over Susan’s hair, and the sound of sniffing followed. She tried to take a deep breath but the weight on her back made it difficult.

The nutjob exhaled in disgust. “What is she?”

“A human.” Kele peered at Susan’s throbbing face as she stroked her hair. “Please, I wanted to teach her how to behave before meeting you and father.”

“Your father.” The bitch snorted. “It’s bad enough he’s entertaining a vampire and dealing with trespassing alphas. We don’t need any more vermin within the den.”

Susan was jerked from the ground by her hair and dragged across the floor. Pain shot into her scalp while she scrambled to support her weight with her legs.

“Let go. Let go.” The shifter world was more brutal than anything she’d ever experienced. Susan slapped at the crazy woman’s hands tangled in her hair.

“My daughter took too many liberties in offering you shelter. You’ll need to find another den to take you in.”

At a loss, Susan yanked and squirmed but only made the pain worse. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Kele leap.

The petite blonde used her wiry strength to jump across the room and land on her mother’s back. The collision knocked them both to the ground in a knot of arms and legs.

Untangling her limbs from the struggling shifters, Susan could finally elbow the bitch in the face. The impact made a satisfying crunch. She pulled back her arm for a second shot, but Kele grabbed her and half carried, half dragged her out of the chamber.

“Hurry, we need to reach my father before she beats you into cinders.”

Not needing any further incentive, Susan ran after her new friend. “Your people are crazy.”

1.     Where did you get the idea for the novel?
I love telling this story because it shows how twisted my mind is. LOL

Both my sons were very ill with strep throat. Fever for days. When one was awake, the other was asleep, and vice versa. In other words, I had slept more than a few hours in days. I felt like the Tylenol, Ibuprofen, and antibiotic dispensing machine.

About two in the morning, I had both boys in one bed so I could watch them together. My oldest’s fever was raging and I was waiting anxiously for the meds to kick in or I’d have to place him in a cool bath. Again.  I was sitting on the floor and rested my head on the mattress and fell asleep.

In a matter of minutes, I dreamt of this whole world. I spent the next nine months writing book one and about a year editing it. If you’ve read where this story comes from and read the book, you’ll see much of the inspiration within it.  By the way, my boys are fine. Thank goodness for antibiotics.  :D

2.     Your title. Who came up with it? Did you ever change your title?
This book had so many titles. It started as Temple then became Smelling Human.  An author friend suggested Scent of a Human. It remained like this for almost a year as it went through the rounds of submissions. It still didn’t convey what I wanted and I posted for help on romance writer forum. Salvation came up in the conversation and voila. Scent of Salvation made so much more sense.

3.     Which came first, the title or the novel? 
Novel. When I’m working on the manuscript they all have working titles but very rarely do they remain.

4.     Since becoming a writer, what’s the most exciting thing to ever happen to you?
First, being included in author circles at conferences as if I always belonged while inside I’m fan-girling. Second, is when I got THE CALL from Angela James offering my first Carina contract. Third, getting the e-mail from my Samhain editor calmly inquiring if Scent was still available for acquisition.   

5.     What book are you currently reading or what was the last book you read?
Currently started Darkfever by Karen Marie Monning. Last book I finished was Flirt by LK Hamilton.

6.     What was your first book that you ever wrote (very first one you wrote, not published)?
Amazingly, the very first book I wrote was the first one I published. Bait, book one of The Angler series. It’s free everywhere, by the way. I was lucky enough to final in a RWA contest which got me the contract.

7.     What is your writing process?
I have very full schedule. I still work part time as a nurse and I have two very busy boys so I’ve learned to write anywhere. Whatever the noise level. What I do HAVE to accomplish first is to outline the book so when I have to set it aside it’s easy to jump back right in without having to figure out what to write next.

  1. Who are your favorite authors of all time?
Jim Butcher, Nalini Singh, LK Hamilton, Larry Niven, Robert Jordan, and CJ Cherryh.

9.     At a book signing, do you just sign your name or do you write a note? How do you come up with stuff to say? 
With each series, I come up with an original tagline that is not used on the cover. Such as for my Vanguards series I usually write, “Never moon a werewolf.” Or my Angler series I use, “Live bait makes all the difference.”

  1. What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
I have been a critical care nurse for twenty years in level one trauma centers in both ER and ICU. There’s not much I haven’t seen or done.

11.  How do you react to a bad review?
I scream, I cry, I tear my hair out. LOL

No. Everyone’s entitled to their opinion and I can’t expect everyone to love me. I write to my best ability and strive always to do better, but I am only human. What frustrates me is when it’s obvious the person didn’t read the story by their comments in either good or bad reviews.

12.  How did you celebrate the sale of your first book?

I’m pretty sure we ordered take-out. LOL I know, hang on to your hats. The party animals are here. 

About the Author:
Annie Nicholas writes paranormal romance with a twist. She has courted vampires, hunted with shifters, and slain a dragon’s ego all with the might of her pen. Riding the wind of her imagination, she travels beyond the restraints of reality and shares them with anyone wanting to read her stories. Mother, daughter, and wife are some of the other hats she wears while hiking through the hills and dales of her adopted state of Vermont.

Annie writes for Samhain Publishing, Carina Press, and Lyrical Press.


Book Tour: Decadence by Karen Stivali Excerpt & Giveaway

A book in the Spice Rack series.

In eight years of marriage, Eric Carlson has never forgotten to kiss his wife Jessica goodbye—until this morning. As Jessica runs her errands, all she can think about is the missing kiss. When Eric calls to tell her he thinks he left the toaster oven on, she rushes home, annoyed and afraid her house may be burning down. Instead of smoke and flames she finds Eric, looking hot and sexy as hell as he prepares fresh waffles.

Eric knows he and Jessica have been drifting apart. He’s bought the hot new product everyone’s talking about—the Spice Rack, guaranteed to spice up your love life. The jar he opens advises them to “Spend a decadent day indulging all your senses.” With the whole day ahead of them, a fridge full of tempting treats and the house to themselves for a change, that’s exactly what Eric intends to do—in the kitchen, on the washing machine, wherever the mood strikes. And Jessica’s got a super-steamy surprise for him too.

A Romantica® contemporary erotic romance from Ellora’s Cave

Excerpt from DECADENCE
He didn’t even kiss me goodbye. Jessica knew it was silly to get upset over something so minor, but she couldn’t help it. In the eight years they’d been married, she couldn’t remember another morning when Eric had forgone the farewell kiss. Sure, the kids were running amok, a sea of backpacks and lunchboxes, but that was normal. Eric saying goodbye with a wave was not.
“See you later.” He’d thrown her his trademark sexy grin. She’d stood still for a few seconds, holding the door open as the kids piled out of the house, waiting. And…nothing.
While queued in the drop-off line at the elementary school, she flipped open the vanity mirror. She didn’t look like a beauty queen but at least she’d showered. Her skin was clear, her cheeks even a bit rosy from gardening the day before. She grimaced. I should have brushed my hair. Dark hair, wavy and out of control, pulled into a loose ponytail paired with t-shirt and yoga pants. I look like a teenager. Not exactly sexy. Frowning at her reflection, she heard the car behind her honk.
“Mom, pull up, it’s our turn.” Timmy, though only seven, had been a backseat driver for nearly five years.
“Sorry.” She inched the car toward the orange drop-off cone and stopped. “Have a good day, guys. I love you.”
“Love you too, mom,” the chorus of three came from the backseat as they scrambled out the door.
Taking a last quick glance in the mirror, she snapped it shut and eased back into the parking lot. As she was about to turn onto the main road, her cell rang. XXXXX, Eric’s ringtone. She fumbled in her purse and slid the purple case open. Holding the phone to her ear with her shoulder, she pulled onto the street, not wanting to get beeped at a second time this morning.
“Hey, sweetie,” Eric said. “Can you do me a favor?”
Sighing, Jessica shifted to keep the phone in place as she changed lanes. “What’s up?”
“I know you said you were going to the grocery store, but I need you to stop home first. I think I may have left the toaster oven on.”
“Can’t you go check?”
“I’ve got a really important meeting this morning. I need you to do it. Please?” She could hear the smile in his voice. The charming, irresistible smile to which she’d never been able to say no.
“Fine.” Even if you didn’t bother to kiss me this morning.
Did he just chuckle?
She hung up and tossed the phone back into her purse. Great. Now I have to go all the way home, which means I won’t get to the store for another hour. Not that it was a huge deal. With all three boys in school this year she had her days to herself. She’d been looking forward to that for years, but it wasn’t as fun and freeing as she’d expected. All the same responsibilities were there. The house still needed to be cleaned, dinner still needed to be made, laundry was always piling up. And she always had a stack of work on her desk. Freelance graphic design was the perfect work-from-home job and she could do it any time of day or night, but lately she felt as though everything was getting away from her. Somehow she’d had more structure to her days when the kids were home than she managed to have with them in school all day.
As she turned onto her block she couldn’t help but look for signs of smoke pouring from her windows. God, I hope he didn’t really leave the toaster oven on. What the hell was he even using the toaster oven for? Eric ate cereal for breakfast, though now that she thought about it she hadn’t seen him pour himself a bowl this morning. She’d been too distracted by the fact that he was wearing only pajama pants as he plodded around the kitchen. She’d been so busy the past few weeks with back-to-school shopping and beginning-of-term projects they’d barely spent any time together. Seeing him bare chested, hair tousled from bed, reminded her that it had been a while. Too long. Her stomach fluttered from a combination of longing for Eric and fear that her house might be burning.
Jessica slammed the door of the minivan shut, breathing in deeply to see if she could catch any hint of smoke in the air. Nothing. As she opened the front door, another scent greeted her instead. The incredibly delightful aroma of…waffles. Why does the house smell like waffles? She rounded the corner into the kitchen and saw the waffle maker on the counter with Eric poised before it, faded jeans slung low on his narrow hips, a t-shirt clinging to his muscular back, dark hair still damp from a shower hanging loosely into his eyes. A wave of heat washed over her, settling between her legs. Her mouth watered from thoughts of more than just a bite of the waffle Eric was lifting out of the grates.
“Perfect timing,” he said, grinning so wide the dimples on his cheeks were positively cavernous. Blue eyes twinkled at her, full of mischief.
“What are you doing?” She tossed her purse onto the counter, mystified.
“Celebrating Mother’s Day.” He plucked a strawberry out of the colander in the sink, swirled it in a bowl of what appeared to be freshly whipped cream, and approached.
“Mother’s Day is in May. It’s October fifteenth.”
“I know.” He held the plump red berry close enough that she felt the gentle brush of cream melting against her lips. “I was thinking it was something we should celebrate more than once a year.”
She curled her tongue around the cream-covered berry and gave a quick suck before biting off a piece.
The moan Eric emitted sent a tremor rolling down her body, making her knees weak. His lips were on hers before she finished chewing. The sweetness of his velvety tongue blended perfectly with the fruit and cream. This was already better than any Mother’s Day she could recall.

Karen Stivali is a prolific writer, compulsive baker and chocoholic with a penchant for books, movies and fictional British men. When she's not writing, she can be found cooking extravagant meals and serving them to family and friends, who never seem to mind the excessive quantities she tends to prepare. She attributes her ability to multitask to the fact that she rarely sleeps, which gives her more hours every day. Prior to deciding to write full time Karen worked as a hand drawn animator, a clinical therapist, and held various food-related jobs ranging from waitress to specialty cake maker. Planning elaborate parties and fundraisers takes up what's left of her time and sanity.
Karen has always been fascinated by the way people relate to one another so she favors books and movies that feature richly detailed characters and their relationships. In her own writing she likes to explore the dynamics between characters and has a tendency to craft romantic tales filled with sarcasm and sexy details. Although she writes in three genres (erotic romance, contemporary romance and women's fiction) all of her stories are love stories with happily ever after endings.
Karen has published several erotic romance novels with Ellora's Cave including two award winning stories: Always You (published September 2011, First Place Winner of the RWA Passionate Plume Award - 2012)Marry Me (published June 2012, First Place Winner in the NEC-RWA Bean Pot Reader's Choice Award - 2013) and Decadence (July 2013).
Her works of women's fiction, Meant To Be, and its sequel, Holding On, (published by Turquoise Morning Press in August and November 2012, respectively) both made the Best of 2012 list at Literati Literature Lovers.
Karen's contemporary romances Then, Again (May 2013) and Leave the Lights On (coming November 2013) are published with Samhain publishing.
To learn more about Karen you can visit her website where she blogs original recipes, sassy commentary on The Bachelor, and tidbits about her journey in the writing world. Karen can also be found attempting witty banter on Twitter

One randomly chosen commenter will receive a digital copy of his/her choice from Karen's backlist.
The more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here: