Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Summer Is Never Long Enough for the Books I Want to Read

Longer days and new releases generally means the list of books I want to read reaches unreasonable proportions. The pile on my nightstand is so high it touches the lamp shade, and that doesn't count the books I've recently loaded onto my Kindle. It's not a bad problem to have really, unless you're a slow reader like me. 

I'm reading Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens at the moment. Though I'm still a few pages into the book, I know this one will be one of my all-time favorites. Owens writes about the natural world with the sort of passion I adore. It's no wonder: her educational background includes degrees in zoology and animal behavior. She grew up running through the Georgia woods and thinks of nature as a "true companion." Her descriptions of the landscape in the first chapter alone had me rereading portions because of the lyrical beauty of her prose. I'll let you know how much I loved it when I come up for air.

The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman has been on my radar for months because, well, BOOKS. I'm a big fan of quirky, and this forthcoming title (July 9th) has it in spades. I mean, poor introverted Nina has a cat named Phil and wants to hide her nose in books from her newly-discovered crazy family after the father she didn't know she had unexpectedly dies. Can't wait for this one!

If You've Got Mail was one of your favorite '90s rom-coms, then I've heard that Waiting for Tom Hanks by Kerry Winfrey is the literary equivalent. As if the cover isn't cute enough, WFTH sounds like it's going to deliver a sweet & funny good time. When main character Annie finds out there's a movie set to film in her neighborhood, she gets her dream job working on it. She's convinced it's the perfect chance to find her dream man. That is until she finds that the object of her affection isn't so swoon-worthy after all. 

Another title that will keep me reading throughout July is Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan, a title from 2017 which popped onto my screen the other day when I was on Goodreads. It sounded so good that I downloaded it right then, and now it's waiting patiently in my Kindle. It has been compared to Garden Spells and The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake, two novels I adore, because of its magic realism elements. 

What are you reading at the moment?

Monday, May 20, 2019

Happy Book Birthday, Love Like Air

Where's the cake? There's a book birthday happening here! 

     Love Like Air, the third book in the Hearts in Hendricks series, officially celebrates its release today! Set in the Northwoods, main characters Mick Graham and Debi Thomas wonder if a second-chance romance is worth the risk while each of their livelihoods is affected by an intrusive local mining company. Debi's popular donut shop is at the heart of the story, where Mick and his surly preteen daughter, Stella, have been coming for years. 
     I enjoyed writing this book so much. The setting was a little more challenging to write than in the previous two books since Debi's and Mick's story is more closely connected to the land. I've mentioned before that Hendricks is inspired by my trips to the Northwoods, so this time I was able to indulge my curiosity about the area's flora and fauna. That's the most fun for me⏤the research. I poured over state park maps, noting the names of trails, rivers, and other natural landmarks. I looked at the Minnesota DNR site for help with plant names (Scorpidium cossonii, anyone?) and the geology of the area. Of course it helped having a geologist living at home to field my endless questions about the mining industry.
     If you're new to the series, no worries. Each of the three books work as a stand-alone novel even though some of the characters make repeat appearances in other books. During release week, Love Like Air is only $0.99, too!

     What I'm reading this week: a non-fiction book called Spark: How Creativity Works by Julie Burnstein. Each chapter explores a different creative master from the twenty-first century and their roots of inspiration.

Monday, May 6, 2019

Love Like Air Coming May 20th

The third book in the Hearts in Hendricks series follows some of the same lovable characters introduced in the first two books, but this time it's Mick's and Debi's story. 
Love heals a broken heart unless secrets stay untold
Running a bakery and staying one step ahead of a mining company determined to buy her family homestead keep Debi Thomas busy in the lakeshore town of Hendricks. Since her ex-husband ruined her desire for romance, she’s more content selling donuts than dating anyway.
Widower Mick Graham has long admired effervescent Debi, and not just for her baking talents. But keeping his preteen daughter out of the principal’s office and his mother-in-law out of his hair have made dating a low priority.
When an accident thrusts Mick and Debi together, she wonders if Mick is the one to heal her heart. However, trouble brews for their budding romance when she discovers Mick might be behind the mine president’s lucrative offer for her property, an offer almost too good to refuse. Can Mick make her a better one—a second chance at love?
Coming May 20th, available for pre-order now

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Hearts in Hendricks Series Now at B & N, iTunes, Kobo

It's about time, right? 

Now you can try out this sweet romance series at any of your favorite retailers. 

Barnes & Noble, iTunes, Kobo, Baker & Taylor & more:

Friday, January 18, 2019

Are you Mad for middle-grade books?

     We're expecting another snow storm this weekend. I have to be careful what I wish for (I love snow!) because even I have a too-much-of-a-good-thing threshold. When one of our cars gets stuck in the driveway because the snow's too deep, I think 'enough is enough.'
     But there's no such thing as too many books, which is why I'm sharing a book sale with you. Today's the last day to pick up free and discounted books from some talented fantasy, science fiction, and contemporary middle-grade authors. Hop over to Michelle Isenhoff's website to check out the titles. I hope you find something you like!

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Thankful Author

     Even as my latest novel LOVE LIKE FIRE celebrates its first week out in the world and I start the third book in the series, I continue to learn about the fictional town of Hendricks and how its proximity to Lake Superior and the North Woods affects the characters and their story. To me, setting is one of the most fun elements to work with in a story. Researching locations excites me, but I also love to drop in fictional names and places into real-life places. I continue adding to the roughly-drawn map that I keep in my binder to keep track of business names, streets, and other landmarks. A reader sent me an e-mail last week, asking, "Is Hendricks a real place? I feel like I've been there." That made me happy. It means I've made Hendricks a living, breathing place in the book.
     LOVE LIKE FIRE was featured on Clean Wholesome Romance on Monday, and is currently $0.99 through 12/3. I'll also be talking more about the writing process behind the novel during a 40-author Facebook Christmas Party on Dec. 7th during my half-hour time slot. Sign up at the link so you don't forget. I'll be offering a multi-author prize pack then, too.
     Also, today I was the guest poster in Angela Hayes' Thankful Author 2018  series. Read about the many furry blessings I've had in my life.
                                                                                                                                - Dawn *

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

New Release: Love Like Fire

     I'm excited to finally share the second book in the Hearts in Hendricks series with you!
     LOVE LIKE FIRE follows Bethany Marconi, yoga instructor and caregiver, who has mastered the art of dousing the spark of love before it catches fire. When former classmate, Nate Ransom, arrives back in town to settle his grandmother's estate, Bethany struggles with her self-imposed dating rules.
     Nate isn't like the others. He's perfect for her. Therein lies the problem.

     Here's an excerpt of LOVE LIKE FIRE:

        Bethany Marconi opened one eye and studied her phone on the futon’s arm across the living room. It buzzed like a swarm of bees for the second time within the minute, its vibration moving the device across the arm until it fell onto the cushion. Whoever it was needed a lesson in patience.
Legs crossed, shoulders back, she closed her eye to continue with the breathing exercise  as the phone grew quiet.
Again, the incessant buzzing interrupted the silence. 
Bethany opened her eyes and glared at the phone. 
She relaxed her torso, shook out her legs, and crawled off her yoga mat to the couch. Darcy’s name was on the screen. 
Bethany balanced the phone between her ear and shoulder as she stood. “Hello?”
“We just had our first fight,” her best friend said on the other end. “I need to talk. I’m going crazy.”
“I wondered when that would happen. You lovebirds were due.” Bethany rolled the mat up and stuffed it behind the futon. 
“Are you busy?” Darcy asked. Her husky voice was an octave higher than usual.
Bethany slipped her jacket off the coat tree, grabbed her wallet and keys, and opened the door. “Not anymore. Meet you at Debi’s in ten minutes. Scone and coffee are on me.”
If there was one thing Bethany was good at, it was matchmaking. Never mind the number of blind dates which had gone up in flames—she wasn’t that good. What mattered were the couples who stayed together, the ones who overcame the pitfalls after the honeymoon months wore off and before the engagement announcement. Bethany counted four weddings to date, all credited to her. That was why she was out the door in minutes when Darcy called in dire need of a shoulder to cry on. Darcy and Sean Stetman would be the fifth wedding. Someday. As soon as Stetman got his act together and proposed. 

Five minutes later, Bethany wheeled into the first parking space in front of Debi’s Donuts, a diminutive place with pink siding and gingerbread trim. Beyond the building, Lake Superior reflected the clear January sky, a liquid sheet of cerulean glass. The colors were a beautiful contrast, and when Bethany stepped out of her car, she took a moment to breathe deeply and revel in the scenery.
She’d console and listen. She’d let Darcy talk for what, five minutes, maybe? Then and only then would Bethany open her mouth. Improving her listening skills was her New Year’s resolution. She’d been doing fairly well, given that she’d been at it a solid week. It was part of her living mindfully project, and admittedly, it was hard.

Darcy’s Jeep pulled in behind her. Even through the windshield, Bethany could tell Darcy was upset. Her raven curls, usually loose around her shoulders, were tamed in a headband, which wouldn’t be a telltale sign of her mood necessarily, but with her hair swept off her face, the angry slashes of her eyebrows were on full display.

     If you haven't yet signed up to receive my newsletter, please do (link at the top left of the page). You'll get advance notice of sales and subscriber-only contests. To read early praise for LOVE LIKE FIRE, visit its book page here.
     LOVE LIKE FIRE is $3.99 on Amazon.
Available for KINDLE UNLIMITED. 

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