Thursday Threads

Welcome to Thursday Threads where each week I introduce another fabulous Soul Mate author. this week I feature Cathy MacRae, author of The Highlander’s Accidental Bride.

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The Highlander’s Accidental Bride (Book 1 in the Highlander’s Bride series)

 

by Cathy MacRae

 

Historical Romance set in the Highlands of Scotland, 1375

 

Heat Scale: Sensual

 

Wed at the king’s command, they entered a marriage neither wanted. Realizing he married the wrong woman, can Laird Scott forge a lasting bond with his new bride and put a long-standing feud to rest?

 

 

Excerpt:

 

“Ah, Eaden.” Ranald’s raised voice brought the earl to a halt.

He turned. “What?”

“There may be a problem with your, er, wife.

“I saw her with the servants.” Eaden scowled at the memory. “I’ll speak to her about her duties.”

“Och, ‘tis no’ the problem.”

“Then what is?”

“She’s no’ yer wife.”

“What do ye mean?” Eaden bit out the words. Damn the Barde wench! What kind of trouble had she stirred up in the two weeks he’d been gone?

Ranald squared his shoulders. “I mean, ye married her, but she isnae the woman we thought she was.”

“What!”

“The day after ye left for Troon, yer bride came running from yer bedroom all in a panic.” He tossed Eaden a wry look. “I wasnae too surprised about that. She kept telling me she wasnae Miriam.”

“What are ye talking about?” Eaden ground out in a voice growing thin with impatience.

“She swears she isnae Miriam Barde, but Mary Marsh, Lady Miriam’s companion.”

Eaden’s face flushed hot with anger as he digested the news and considered the ramifications. “The woman is lying. She has fought me tooth and nail from the beginning. The treacherous wench is trying one last time to put an end to this marriage.” He glared at Ranald, daring him to disagree.

“Nay,” Ranald replied evenly. “You dinnae see or hear her that day. She was pale and trembling. I dinnae think she was lying.”

Eaden didn’t bother to answer. He spun on his heel and strode down the stairs and into the castle, looking for the woman who was turning his life upside down.

 

LINKS

 

Soul Mate Publishing

http://www.soulmatepublishing.com

 

Amazon

http://www.amazon.com/The-Highlanders-Accidental-Bride-ebook/dp/B00BMFPT12

 

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cathy-MacRae-Author/349522085132210?fref=ts

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Fantasy Romance – What is it?

I’m excited today to be featuring a guest blog from the incredible Helen C. Johannes who is talking about Fantasy Romance. Helen is the author of The Prince of Val-Feyridge.

Her new novel Bloodstone releases today.

Please welcome Helen C.  Johannes.

I want to thank Steven for letting me guest on his blog this week. Steve’s a great supporter of romance writers in general and the FFPT (fantasy, futuristic, paranormal, time travel) “weird stuff” in particular. I’ve particularly enjoyed his SON OF THUNDER fantasy romance novel and his paranormal novellas.

 

I’m Helen C. Johannes, and I write Fantasy Romance, one kind of “the weird stuff.” When I introduce myself and what I write, I’m often asked for a definition by those who either know little about the romance genre in general or those whose knowledge of romance is limited to historical and/or contemporary categories. I understand why they are asking.

 

Fantasy Romance—What is it?

 

Romance’s umbrella takes in everything from Inspirational Romance to Regency Romances to Romantic Suspense to Vampire Romances among many more. It is a vast and expanding field as writers find new ways to tell love stories. Fantasy Romance is one of these many categories within the Romance fiction genre, and not all publishers give it a separate line; however, my publisher, The Wild Rose Press, puts fantasy romance specifically in their Faery Rose line.

 

The Fantasy Romance genre otherwise is often lumped in with Science Fiction/Futuristic (think THE TIME TRAVELER’S WIFE, AVATAR) and Paranormal (think TWILIGHT, the Sookie Stackhouse/TRUE BLOOD series) as in vampires, werewolves and ghosts), but it does have its own distinct personality. Anyone who is familiar with the recent movie versions of THE LORD OF THE RINGS, THE HOBBIT, or THE LION THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE (CHRONICLES OF NARNIA) is aware of the basic elements of the Fantasy genre. Sword and Sorcery and High Fantasy are other common terms. Re-imagined fairy tales (TANGLED, EVER AFTER) are another type of fantasy romance.

 

The elements of Fantasy include a setting (often medieval) of the author’s invention, a quest or journey of some sort, magical or fantastical creatures (other than vampires or werewolves), a sense of destiny at work in the characters’ lives, and usually objects with some mystical power or significance to be recovered or obtained by the characters. Fantasy ROMANCE takes these elements and makes a love story the central force driving the plot.

 

To show you how this works, in my first book, THE PRINCE OF VAL-FEYRIDGE, I created three distinct lands (medieval setting) that had once been united under a king.  When he died without naming an heir, his three sons fought over the crown. Blood was shed, the three lands broke apart, and the crown they fought over was lost. Now my hero has a blood claim to the throne (his perceived destiny), but he must find the crown (the missing icon) to convince the various “tribes” to reunite behind him. Of course, his greatest prize (and ultimate destiny) will be winning the love of the one woman he is convinced he should not pursue.

 

My second book BLOODSTONE is a Beauty-and-the-Beast reimagining set in a no-man’s land where the boundaries of good and evil have been shaken (medieval setting). The hero, who was cursed by a mage (magical being), lives as the Shadow Man, a (magical) being feared and reviled who trades rare bloodstones—petrified dragon’s blood (the icon)—for supplies. The heroine is on a quest with her father to obtain bloodstones for a jewelry commission. They are drawn to each other by shared dreams (perceived destiny), but when Mirianna and her father are attacked, she offers herself in return for her father’s rescue. Living in the ruined fortress with the Shadow Man, Mirianna slowly realizes that a flesh-and-blood man—not a fiend—hides there in hoods and darkness. But are her love and courage enough to lift the curse (quest) and restore the man (ultimate destiny) before the mage returns?

 

 

 

This definition and description of fantasy romance fits what I write, but it also fits Steven’s SON OF THUNDER where the Norse gods’ world collides with the heroine’s human world over the quest for the belt of Thor.

 

Now, I’d love to hear how others of you define Fantasy Romance and what books and movies fit under your umbrella for the genre.

 

Visit Helen at: http://helencjohannes.blogspot.com/

 

Link to THE PRINCE OF VAL-FEYRIDGE: http://www.amazon.com/Prince-Val-Feyridge-Helen-C-Johannes/dp/1601546769

 

BLOODSTONE debuts as an Amazon Kindle Select title Oct. 28th: http://www.amazon.com/Bloodstone-Helen-C-Johannes-ebook/dp/B00G8GTHRC

 

Excerpt from BLOODSTONE

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“What about us? What do we do?”

 

Only the hood rotated, cocking with exaggerated deliberation. “Why, you die, old man.”

 

Her father blanched. His grip on Mirianna’s arms faltered.

 

She saw the Shadow Man turn, saw the muscles of his thighs bunch as he prepared to leap down the hillside, saw, in the corner of her eye, shapes gathering along the tree line below, horrible shapes she’d seen only hours before rushing at her from a darkened clearing. With a shudder, she broke from her father’s grasp.

 

“Please!” She reached out to the black sleeve. “Help us!”

 

He recoiled at her touch like one snake-bitten. The sudden, sharp focus of his regard staggered her, but she backed no more than a step. No matter how he terrified her, he’d helped her once. She’d been led to him again, and not, her instincts told her, without reason.

 

“Please,” she repeated. “Help us. I—we’ll do anything.”

 

“Anything?”

 

His voice was a whisper that caressed flesh. Mirianna’s stomach quivered. Her breasts tingled. Her mouth grew even drier. Without thinking, she slid her tongue along her lips. Vaguely, she wondered what she’d done. And why time seemed suspended, as if everyone but she and the Shadow Man had been cast in stone and all sound arrested. All sound except the taut, guttural repeat of his question.

“Anything?”

 

Another one bites the dust.

I just finished putting up the files for the 2nd edition of There’s no such thing as Werewolves.

Time to say goodbye to the old cover:

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And welcome the new cover:

2nd edition half cover

If everything goes as it usually does, the eBook should be up by the end of the day and the print edition should be available in 5 to 7 days.

Thursday Threads

Welcome to Thursday Threads. Here’s another great read from Soul Mate Publishing:

ThePromisedOneHighRes

The Promised One

By C.D. Hersh

Genre: Paranormal romance suspense

Heat Level: Sensual

 

When homicide detective Alexi Jordan is forced to use her shape shifting powers to catch a paranormal killer, she risks the two most important things in her life—her badge and the man she loves.

 

Excerpt

 

The woman stared at him, blood seeping from the corner of her mouth. “Return the ring, or you’ll be sorry.”

With a short laugh he stood. “Big words for someone bleeding to death.” After dropping the ring into his pocket, he gathered the scattered contents of her purse, and started to leave.

“Wait.” The words sounded thick and slurred . . . two octaves deeper . . . with a Scottish lilt.

Shaw frowned and spun back toward her. The pounding in his chest increased. On the ground, where the woman had fallen, lay a man.

He wore the same slinky blue dress she had—the seams ripped, the dress top collapsed over hard chest muscles, instead of smoothed over soft, rounded curves. The hem skimmed across a pair of hairy, thick thighs. Muscled male thighs. Spiked heels hung at an odd angle, toes jutting through the shoe straps. The same shoes she’d been wearing.

The alley tipped. Shaw leaned against the dumpster to steady himself. He shook his head to clear the vision, then slowly moved his gaze over the body.

A pair of steel-blue eyes stared out of a chiseled face edged with a trim salt-and-pepper beard. Shaw whirled around scanning the alley.

Where was the woman? And who the hell was this guy?

Terrified, Shaw fled.

The dying man called out, “You’re cursed. Forever.”

 

Buy our book at Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00DUMODKI/

Learn more about C.D. Hersh at:

Website: http://cdhersh.wordpress.com/

Soul Mate Publishing: http://smpauthors.wordpress.com/

Facebook site: https://www.facebook.com/pages/CD-Hersh/1374333942788724

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorCDHersh

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/CDHersh

Trailer Tuesdays

Fellow Soul Mate author Joanne Guidoccio is starting a new feature called Trailer Tuesday. Can you guess who she’s featuring today? (Hint, hint…its me.)

Stop by at: http://joanneguidoccio.com/2013/10/22/trailer-tuesday-steve-mitchell/

 

Gone but not forgotten.

As I write this, my first published work is disappearing from Amazon and CreateSpace. Swiftly Beats The Heart (First Edition) is no more.

Let’s pause a moment to remember:

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The cover was done in Microsoft Paint. I hovered over the <Save and Publish> button for long moments wondering if i was doing the right thing.

That was a year and a half ago. How things change.

Of course, the reason the first edition had to die was so the second edition could be born.

Coming soon:

Swiftly half Cover

It’s time to say goodby to the old and embrace the new. The new edition features this new cover, plus up to date information on my other published works including a bonus chapter from There’s no such thing as Werewolves.

Now I’m not saying the old edition is going to become a collectors item, but if (when?…okay we’ll stay with if) I do become famous you never know…