Sunday, June 20, 2021

FATHER'S DAY AND WEDDINGS! #RomanceGems @CarolinClemmons

By Caroline Clemmons

Happy Father’s Day--Late! Although our theme this month is about June weddings, because of the special day, I’ll mention the two most important men in my life: my father and my husband. This is still about weddings and happily-ever-after.

Daddy was a remarkable man (says most women). He valued education and started his adult life teaching school. His brothers repeatedly urged him to work with them at the cotton gin, where he could make more money. (He regretted this change later.) He was a widower with four children when he met my mom, who was twenty-three years his junior. Don’t you know that caused a lot of raised eyebrows and speculation? Almost four years later, I was born.


As my mother told me, the two of them met when she accompanied her mother and stepfather to the grocery store late one afternoon. She saw a group of friends plus Daddy talking in front of the store. One friend asked her if she was going to a certain party that evening. She told him she couldn’t because she didn’t have transportation. The friend offered to take her and take her home, so she told my grandmother where she was going.

When they were ready to get into the friend’s car, Daddy said, “I believe I’ll ride along with you.”

Mother said he didn’t ask her to dance at the party, but stood at the edge of the room and talked to some of the men.

When they got to her house, he held the car door open for her and said, “Now that I know where you live, I’ll be coming to call.”

And, he did. They were married several months later. Their marriage lasted thirty-five years before Daddy died of a stroke brought on from emphysema.

Five weeks shy of thirteen, I helped my friend plan and give her birthday party. We were sort of location friends since we were the only two girls in our church youth group who lived on our side (the wrong side) of town. Plus, we were in Girl Scouts and school choir together. I knew she had a brother who was a twin. Whenever she said “my brother”, I thought she meant the twin. At the party, I was passing her gifts to open when an older male appeared carrying a camera. My future husband, who I call Hero, had come home from work early to take photos of his sister’s thirteenth birthday party. He was fifteen, and I thought he was the most suave and handsome male I’d ever seen. I still think he’s handsome.


He made honor roll grades, worked several jobs, and participated in ham radio activities. We dated for a while when I was seventeen and eighteen but parted ways over something silly. When I was twenty-three, we reconnected and were married several months later. Sometimes I actually get something right, and our marriage is the best example of that and the best thing that has happened to me! After a gazillion years that seem like only a decade, we are still married and have two loving daughters. I couldn’t love Hero more than I do today! 



Saturday, June 19, 2021

Weddings and June #RomanceGems #lucindarace

 Hello Again, 

 

June is a month filled with love and weddings. I often wondered why is it that so many people get married in June. Of course, I had to look it up. The month is named for the goddess Juno, the protector of women in all aspects of life, especially marriage and child bearing. My personal theory, the weather is spectacular. The cool rainy days of spring are behind us the hot muggy days of summer are ahead so June weather is usually JUST right. 

 

Oh, and I was a June bride, our wedding anniversary was on the 9th.  When did you tie the knot? 


 

I found this fun little anecdote when I was doing a bit of research… 

 

Married when the year is new, he’ll be loving, kind and true.
When February birds do mate, you wed not dread your fate.
If you wed when March winds blow, joy and sorrow both you’ll know.
Marry in April when you can, joy for Maiden and for Man.
Marry in the month of May, and you’ll surely rue the day.
Marry when June roses grow, over land and sea you’ll go.
Those who in July do wed, must labor for their daily bread.
Whoever wed in August be, many a change is sure to see.
Marry in September’s shrine, your living will be rich and fine.
If in October you do marry, love will come but riches tarry.
If you wed in bleak November, only joys will come, remember.
When December snows fall fast, marry and true love will last.
–Anonymous

 

Now onto the love of books. So many of the Romance Gems have been writing and releasing new books. Yours truly included. I’ll be releasing two Christmas themed books this fall as well as Blush in August, Vintage in October and Bouquet in January. I hope you’ve been able to pick up Blends or Breathe and start reading about the Price family. 

 

Oh, and I did a thing… my first full length book, Lost and Found is now PermaFree on e-book retailers  and ALL my books are now on Google Play. So, it has been a busy June so far with much more to come.

 



 

Until next time, 

Stay healthy, happy and in love. 

Lucinda  

Friday, June 18, 2021

The Meaning Behind June Brides by @karilemor #RomanceGems

 

June is a very popular month to get married. These days, it’s often because the weather is starting to get nicer, but not too hot. But why is being a “June Bride” such a big deal?



Going back in history, we see the name June is derived from the Roman goddess of marriage, Juno. Many people believed when a couple got married in June their marriage would be blessed forever with happiness.

But June weddings were also done for quite logical reasons. Many people married in June so conception wouldn’t interfere with the harvest. Yep, count nine months later and you don’t want the wife trying to pick the crops as she’s about to give birth.

Another theory is that in many years past, baths weren’t as common as they are today. Some families only got one a year (and they had to share the water – yuck!) Often the yearly bath was in May or early June. So marriages took place to ensure the bride still smelled fairly decent for her groom (and vice versa). Yet, the bride wanted to be sure to have a pleasing scent, so she carried a bouquet of flowers to help.



But flowers and bouquets had other meanings too. Summer was great for taking advantage of fresh flowers for the ceremony. There are numerous symbolic meanings with flowers that show loyalty, purity, and love. In early Rome, the bride did not carry a bouquet but rather wore a garland that symbolized a new life and fertility. Often aphrodisiacs such as Dill were added so the newlyweds got in the right mood for the wedding night. Some cultures added stronger herbs and plants to the bouquet (like garlic!!!) because they were superstitious and wanted to ward off evil spirits from showing up at the wedding.

The tradition of tossing the bouquet goes way back. At weddings, the bride was considered to be lucky, so many women guests wanted a piece of that luck. Thus, they would try and tear off a piece of the wedding dress. So the tradition of throwing the bouquet to grant luck onto another guest began, avoiding decimation of the lovely bride’s gown. Can you imagine paying a bazillion dollars for your dress just to have people tear it apart?



The tradition of wedding rings has also been around for a very long time.  The band represents eternity because it doesn’t have a beginning or an end, and is what the happy couple wishes for their marriage. The couple places the rings on their fingers as a sign they agree to a never-ending commitment.

Another tradition is ‘Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue.’ Is still around today. The old represents continuity and stability. Something new symbolizes optimism and good fortune in your new life together. Something borrowed represents borrowed happiness from someone who loves you. And the blue symbolizes love and fidelity.

Whether you’re a traditionalist or prefer something more modern, weddings are beautiful because they show us that two people love each other so much they are willing to work together to and sacrifice to be with each other.

I have a few books that have weddings in them but I think my favorite is my Marriage of Convenience story, Elusive Dreams. Erik has promised to look after and adopt two children he rescued from the same bombing that left him seriously injured. But that injury is keeping him from being the ideal candidate to take the kids. Enter introverted neighbor, Tessa. She’s crushed on Erik since she was a teenager and now he wants to marry her? It’s her dream come true.



Here’s a peek at their wedding:

When she looked to the end of the aisle, there stood Erik, and her heart actually stopped. But when it started again, it beat triple time. God, how could any man be so devastatingly handsome? His Marine uniform was blue from broad shoulders to above his spit shined shoes. The red stripe down the lighter blue pants focused attention on his long legs. His white cover sat on top of the fresh haircut he’d gotten two days ago and the amount of decorations he had on his chest filled her lungs with air and pride. This was no mere mortal. This man was a hero and for some strange reason he’d agreed to her stupid suggestion of getting married. There were a dozen women in town who he could have asked who would have agreed to marry him to keep the kids. One who was much prettier and not such a fr…introvert.

He looked up. His eyes glowed and a huge grin crossed his face. It was similar to the one he’d worn the times they’d practiced kissing this week. Forget about her heart. Every damn organ stopped functioning. How would she get the last few steps to reach him?

“Don’t keep him waiting, dear,” Hans whispered in her ear. “It’s obvious he’s a mite impatient.”

She took a step and then another. Soon she was close enough and he shifted his cane and reached out with his left hand. Putting her hand in his, she held on tight. For Erik, she’d hold on as tight and as long as she needed to.

ELUSIVE DREAMS

Here's where you can find me!

 Website: https://www.karilemor.com/ 

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/Karilemorauthor/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/karilemor

Pinterest:  https://www.pinterest.com/karilemor/

Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/karilemorauthor/

 Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/9756283.Kari_Lemor

 BookBub:  https://www.bookbub.com/authors/kari-lemor

 Amazon Author page:  https://www.amazon.com/Kari-Lemor/e/B00ON2YDI6/

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Celebrate Marriage! by @BonnieEdwards #RomanceGems

 June is wedding month and yes, I'm coming at the whole wedding day with a different take. For me, it's the marriage that's important. The couple stressing over the finances, the music, the food, the venue, all seems a little over-the-top to me. 

I know, I know! Some of you are thinking "But, but, what about the perfection of the DAY!" And to that, I say, "What about the vows and what they mean to the people saying them?" A perfect day means nothing without the vows being said in earnest, after thoughtful consideration. Weddings can be large, fun, hectic, exotic and these days, in your parents' back yard with very few people.

But, seriously? As long as the couple shows up, says their vows, then it's a done deal.

And marriage begins. 

Marriage is built each day. Some days the foundation is unshakeable, others, it can feel like the bricks are tumbling down...but deep in your heart, you know you took a vow. You gave your word and time doesn't change that. So, this month celebrate marriage in all its forms, no matter how it started...or even if there was no wedding. Because common-law is marriage too. Two people committed to a future together is rare and beautiful and important. 

See the bride with the running shoes on? Is she making a dash for freedom? Or making a statement about comfortable footwear? I don't know why I included the image, but I knew a bride once who felt much like running. (she should have) 


A small reminder that on August 15, I'll be taking readers back to Last Chance Beach for a full-length novel about a man who really, really doesn't want anyone invading his space, and the woman who charges in. When I have a date for pre-order I'll be announcing it first in my newsletter: Bonnie's Newsy Bits. 


Bonnie Edwards has been writing all her life, starting with a poem about Santa suffering with gout. She was seven, Santa was a thousandteen years old. Delighted with writing, she went on to write family sagas, humorous contemporary romance, romantic suspense, erotic paranormal ghost romances and more.

With over 30 titles to her credit, she has been translated into several languages and sold books worldwide. Aside from standalone romances, she has 4 ongoing romance series, Tales of Perdition, The Brantons, and Love at Christmas. Contemporary family sagas find a home in Return to Welcome. She's hard at work on a new series releasing in August 2021. Learn about more exciting releases and get a free romance by subscribing to her newsletter, Bonnie’s Newsy Bits

Cheers and happy reading!

Bonnie Edwards


https://www.bonnieedwards.com/   BookBub Twitter  Facebook

 

 

 

 

 



Monday, June 14, 2021

WARMING UP TO 'CHRISTMAS IN JULY' WITH A DICKENS HOLIDAY SEQUEL by Nancy Fraser


What better way to kick off those inevitable 'Christmas in July' promotions than with a holiday prequel in June? My Dickens Holiday Romance Prequel, Making Christmas, releases today! The novelette features the lovestory of the parents of my hero from last year's Millie's Awesome Holiday Miracle, from the Dickens Holiday Romance Anthology.

This story was so much fun to write, especially since I remember the 1980s fondly (and, unfortunately, easily).

Here's a bit about the book:

A 1980s Vintage Romance ...

It’s been five years since William Barrett returned to Dickens to take over as CEO of Wil-Bar Toys. He’s spent these past years helping build Wil-Bar into a leader in creative, handmade toys. His work ethic and drive has left him little time for a personal life. Or, perhaps he’s still pining for the one who got away.

Catherine Gates moved away from Dickens six years earlier. Now a staff reporter for a woman’s magazine, she’s returning to Dickens to do a story on Wil-Bar Toys new production methods and get the scoop on their upcoming holiday line.

When Will and Cat meet up again for the first time in years, it’s as if they’ve never been apart. Rekindling their friendship, and attraction, becomes more important than Cat’s article, or even the secrecy of the new toy lines.

Can these two childhood friends make up for lost time and pursue the romance they missed out on years earlier? Or, will Cat’s story expose too much and put them at odds with one another?


And, an excerpt:

Catherine made her way through the front doors of Wil-Bar Toys and toward the reception desk. “I’m here to see Mr. Barrett. I have a ten o’clock appointment.”

“I’ll buzz Margaret and she’ll come to get you,” the young woman said.

Catherine waited for Margaret, obviously a new edition to the staff since she didn’t recognize the name.

Moments later, a woman who looked to be in her late twenties entered the lobby. “Hello, I’m Margaret Weatherby. If you’ll follow me, please.”

She fell in step behind the woman, going through the heavy oak double doors she remembered from her childhood. They continued down the hallway leading to the main offices, coming to a stop in front of the desk outside the large corner suite.

“How long have you worked at Wil-Bar?” Catherine asked.

“Two years now. I was originally hired to work for Mr. Wilfred Barrett but when the younger Mr. Barrett’s secretary left to get married, I took over for her as well.”

“That must keep you very busy.”

The woman nodded. “It does, especially this time of year. However, it’s such a wonderful place to work, I couldn’t see myself going anywhere else.” She paused, then added, “I’ll let Mr. Barrett know you’re here.”

“I’d appreciate—”

Her words of appreciation were interrupted by a man’s booming voice. “Margaret, do you have the report I left for photocopying earlier?” The voice was followed by the man’s appearance outside the office door, his footsteps coming to a halt when he saw her standing there.

She lifted her head, meeting Will Barrett’s intense gaze head-on.

“Cat? Cat Gates. I’ll be dam...darned.”

“Hello, Will.”

“You two know each other?” Margaret asked. When they both nodded at the same time, Margaret added, “Well, that certainly saves time on introductions.”

Will motioned for her to follow him into the office. “You’re the journalist they’ve sent to write a story on Wil-Bar?”

“Yes,” she said, taking the seat he offered. “I assume they thought I’d have an inside track on the place since I’m from Dickens.”

His chuckle sent a flurry of butterflies rushing her stomach.

“Inside track. I’d say so. You know every nook and cranny of this place—or at least you did before we remodeled.”

“Some I knew all too well, given I spent more time hiding than you and Tommy did seeking.”

“Sorry about that,” he said with a broad grin. “We were pretty mean to you back then.”


Available on Your Favorite eBook Platform

Of course, there's a trailer...



In addition, fellow Lady of Dickens, Peggy Jaeger and I are doing a joint tour for our Dickens prequels. You can find the entire list of tour stops at Goddess Fish Promotions.



Until next month, please stay happy, healthy, and well read.

Nancy


Sunday, June 13, 2021

Moonlight at the Grand Hotel - A Perfect Summer Read by May Williams

 

A week ago, Amie Denman, my writing partner (and sister!), revealed the cover of Moonlight at the Grand Hotel on sale June 29 and available for pre-order now on Amazon. We can’t believe this is the 13th book in our popular Grand Hotel series. We created the premise for our luxurious island resort on an Amtrak train coming home from a book convention in Chicago. We envisioned four books, one for each season. When those were a hit, we knew we couldn’t stop.

Read on for a little teaser about each of the novellas in Moonlight at the Grand Hotel.



A millionaire in hiding…


Milo Pryor sells the software company that made him rich but robbed his soul and heads for White Pine Island where his friend co-owns the Grand Hotel and promises him a job for the summer. Tending bar and serving up cocktails sounds perfect for Milo who wants to meet people who don’t know him as a computer wizard and millionaire. Keeping his wealth a secret should be easy, but finding happiness seems elusive until he meets the beautiful ballroom dance instructor at the Grand Hotel.

Liza Knight has been on stage for ten years, danced in dozens of Broadway shows, and traveled the world. What Liza really wants, though, is a permanent home somewhere and a man who’s the real deal, unlike the actors she’d dated. Teaching ballroom dancing to Grand Hotel guests a few hours each day leaves her plenty of time to reevaluate her career, but she also finds the serious bartender fascinating.

When they agree to a free and fun summer romance on the island, she never suspects he’s playing a part and dancing around the truth.


A fake girlfriend pact…

Holden Pierce needs a girlfriend—a fake girlfriend—to help him entertain clients he hopes will purchase homes in an exclusive housing development. He knows the ins and outs of selling real estate on White Pine Island, but he needs help socially. When pretty and social Daphne Lincoln buys a storefront in the village, he realizes she has the skills he lacks.

Daphne’s dream is to own a souvenir store like the ones she loved to visit as a kid when her family traveled. On White Pine Island, she buys a building and puts her heart into preparing her store to open. Her realtor Holden is sweet and a little shy, but he surprises her by proposing a fake dating ruse—just for business purposes. In exchange Holden offers to introduce her to islanders and help her business.
It seems like a win-win with no commitments past a few weeks, so she agrees to their temporary relationship.

But after dancing at the Grand Hotel and romantic walks in the moonlight, will Daphne and Holden be ready to let each other go?

And just for some summer fun...
Here's a photo of Amie and I circa 1990. We were on vacation and having a marvelous time as you can see. 


My Social Media links are below. Happy Reading and Happy Summer, everyone! 

Website

Facebook

Twitter 



Saturday, June 12, 2021

Print Readers, Rejoice! by Laura Hunsaker

 Roughing It is in print! I'm so excited to share that the entire New York Empires series is now in print! If you're a reader who prefers a physical book over an ebook, your wait is over! 

Roughing It is an anthology where all three stories overlap and use the same characters. Where one author might have the goalie for her character, another might have the team captain. It's a really fun and exciting concept! This series is slightly paranormal, and my story has werewolves! I mean, werewolf hockey players? That's just so fun! (I write as Kenzie MacLir in this series). 

Right now, it's summer in my area of the world, and some ice cold hockey sounds refreshing and cool. Come for the Paranormal Romance, stay for the donut eating contests, Nerf dart wars, and swear jars. 



Amazon  |  Barnes and Noble  |  Kobo  |  Google Play Books Smashwords Goodreads

Caught in the Crossfire by Stacey Agdern

Bryce Emerson only agreed to draw an account of the Empires Goalie Tryouts to humor his brother. But when a vision convinces him the woman who saved his prized pen from a snowy grave is in danger of being injured by a faulty mask, he takes it upon himself to make her a new one.

Goaltender Carly Fein is trying out for the New York Empires, and the last thing she needs is the complication of an artist. But when she agrees to let him make her a new mask, Bryce Emerson finds his way under her skin.

Can Bryce and Carly figure out what happens when they’re caught in the crossfire of love and hockey? Or will the stress of new love and competition drive them apart.

Crashing the Net by Isabo Kelly

Billionaire Connor Evans needs a challenge. Trying out for the New York Empires’ hockey team fits the bill, even if it is just a publicity stunt and a way to shut his twin brother up. Running into the woman who left him six years earlier, a woman he’s never gotten over, is not part of the plan. Once he sees Matty, though, Connor knows he can’t let her go again. But he’s got secrets he can’t risk sharing. And Matty is the one person who could uncover those secrets if he lets her get too close.

After traveling the world, Matilda Thomson is ready for a real job and a more stable life. Her internship with the New York Empires will give her the experience she needs to move into that future. But first, she has to face Connor again, and one of the most painful losses she’s ever experienced. The only way she can move forward is to confront her feelings and risk her heart one more time.

Heat and passion spark as hot as ever between them. But trust doesn’t come easy. And if Connor can’t open up and let Matty in this time, he’ll lose her forever.

Against the Boards by Kenzie MacLir

Kyle Sandberg is living his best life. He’s one of the top hockey players in the world. Has two amazing best friends and all the sarcastic hockey t-shirts he could wear. After his own family turns their backs on him, he’s happy playing for the Empires and hanging out with his own found family. What he doesn’t want is his pain in the ass twin brother back in his life or a mate.

When paramedic Faith Church left Puerto Rico for New York, she had zero intentions of getting involved in the local pack. Having had her fill of pack politics, she was ready to go lone wolf. But being left alone was too much to ask when her cousin was the Alpha’s mate.

What neither was counting on was Fate, having her own plans for them. A chance encounter at a traffic accident changes everything. Kyle and his wolf are willing to go with Fate’s plans. But Faith, having finally broken away from her pack’s expectations wants nothing to do with Fate, or Kyle. Too bad her wolf disagrees…