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Archive for May, 2011

Winners Galore!

So remember that “come rant with me post” I had on Saturday? Winners were drawn via randomizer.org. It’s been a fun giveaway weekend. Yesterday, for Memorial Day and just because, I gave away three copies of HelenKay Dimon’s new sexy short Risqué Business as well. On twitter.

Anyway, the three winners of The Heir by Grace Burrowes are…

gamistress66
Laura K Curtis
Julia Broadbooks

And remember that crazy busy post when Joy guested? Yeah? Well… even though I made a new post with winner’s namesfour of then never emailed me! So, we’ve redrawn names! And the new winners are…

Tempt the Devil by Anna Campbell – Sasha Devlin
My Reckless Surrender by Anna Campbell – StacieDM
A Little Harmless Pleasure by Melissa Schroeder – Donna Marie Rogers
Jamesville Affairs by N J Walters – Tabitha

You know the deal – email me by Saturday. There’s that lovely handy dandy contact form up above.

For the first three – I just need an email address where I can gift you your kindle copy. For you next four? Need a mailing address, please, so the books can be sent to you.

Cheers! And tomorrow, birthday month begins! (Incidentally, my birthday isn’t today. Or tomorrow. It’s the 28th. Which is, just so happens to be the day RWA starts!) And if you didn’t win this time around – don’t worry. Lots of giveaways in June. Every Tuesday, likely every Thursday, and maybe some Saturdays as well! (Oh, and if you’d like a signed Nalini Singh book… check the previous post. Names will be drawn for that and posted on Saturday.)

(I feel like I need to find some sort of great birthday cake image/icon… but it’s too damn hot for that now.)

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Today, Kiss of Snow is available to the general public. Finally, us little people who have been writhing with jealousy at all those advance reviews can get our hands on a shiny new copy! And even more exciting, the e-copy is available the same day as the paper copy! As someone who has turned entirely to digital reading… that’s a big deal 😀

Anyway, I’ve been waiting for Hawke and Sienna’s book for at least two years. I remember checking Nalini Singh‘s webpage in either ’08 or ’09 and having this reaction: Nnnnnnnnnooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

So anyway, all those little excerpts that have been posted that I couldn’t resist now fit as parts into a whole. I’ve steadily ignored all reviews – but everyone has been saying this book is awesome, and worth the hardcover price. (Yup, this book is hardcover, the first in the series in this format.)

I asked Ms. Singh about doing a “Guest Author & A Giveaway” post, but at that point I was scheduling into 2012 and she declined, based on the variables of her schedule and I was asking her about something over a year in advance. However, she’s super generous, so she’s offered a giveaway here! What’s the prize? A super swanky copy of Slave to Sensation. (My apologies – it’s not a copy of Kiss of Snow, as way back in February Nalini told me the list publicity had was already super long, so I figured, a sure thing is better than no thing, yes? Anyway we can go out and buy our copies of KoS “together.”)

There’s also a reason for this, actually, Nalini offered Slave to Sensation because it’s the first book in the series. So if you haven’t read any of the Psy/Changeling books, here’s your chance! Or, if you love the series that much, and really like signed copies of books… it’s a golden opportunity!

So leave a comment today for your chance to win! (And of course if you already have a copy, I hope you’ll chat with us anyway, and just let me know you already have the book.) Quick note – the winner will be chosen via randomizer.org and posted on Saturday – it’s your responsibility to check back at the blog.

Have you read the books in this series? (I’m a book or two behind as of Mid-May, so I’ve got a little bit of time to catch up :D.) What do you think of shifters? Have a favorite type of shifter? If you’ve read the books, which character is your favorite?

Would you want to be Psy, Changeling, or Human?

And since I can’t ever be not long-winded… to explain: I also badgered poor Nalini about this because… tomorrow it’s June! And June is my Birthday Month. So I want everyone to love it as much as I do, so it’ll be giveaway palooza up in here. Stay tuned! 😉

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I’ve been thinking long and hard about… well, blog posts, the internet, communities, memes, and information. Oftentimes I remark on the incestuousness of the internet – and what I mean is… well let’s not quite go there. But along those lines is when is something “so old” that it’s new again? Or when does something not new go viral with a “Look what I just found!!!!!”?

Basically this is just a post with me being old and curmudgeonly. I definitely don’t begrudge people the joy of finding new things and being excited about. What riles up the bitch in me is when people think that they’ve discovered something entirely new.

I guess I’d just like people to be more thoughtful. But that would take a lot of work and effort. Time too.

And speaking of something a bit different – asking stupid questions online. Be it on twitter, forums, websites, blogs. Sometimes I wish everyone would bust out lmgtfy on everyone’s ass. But I can’t really wish or say that because I have my lazy moments and figure it honestly would (or should) be easier and faster just to ask. And sometimes we should indulge our lazy sides, right?

I’m trying to work up a good rant without being snide. Or too angry. There’s the fact that pretty much every topic has been covered ad nauseum. Recently it’s piracy. What with the “I’m a piracy fighting warrior!” stuff. Good for you. Just don’t jam it down my throat. It has the opposite effect of what you’re going for. (Obviously I’m saying you plural here, in the general “person out there” vagary.)

My point is, you’re preaching to the choir, generally. So, the people who listen and agree will be all “rah rah yeah!” Or… start getting fed up, or they’re people who never gave a damn in the first place and nothing you say matters because they don’t care. Now I’m not saying posts that are educational about piracy should be eliminated. Some people honestly don’t know. But… the book intros or dedications that say like “If you’re a pirate I hope your baby dies. … Oh but uh, if you bought this book, thanks so much!” What!? You might say? But there are things like that out there. And similar posts. Just… *sigh*

So… since the end of this month is being finished up with giveaways, and June is going to have a number of giveaways as well… because HELLO BIRTHDAY BASH! I figure I’ll start it off – and thank you for listening to me rant and bitch with a giveaway. Also because I’ve been grumpy and down. So… might as well do something nice and spread some cheer, right?

Barring unforeseen circumstances, I’ll be giving away three kindle copies of Grace Burrowes’s novel The Heir. It’s the first book from Sourcebooks Casablanca to hit the NYT list, I believe, so that’s super exciting. Note – kindle books. I do my damnedest to avoid the post office.

So – what do you think of internet dramaz? It’s irresistible, isn’t it? But what about the ranting and raving and “zomg look what I just [found]” stuff? Is it all still bright shiny and new for you? Or are you joining me in the back to grouch? [Note – I have drinks and cookies. What? I’m not above bribery.]

Oh! And Happy Memorial Day Weekend to those of you in the States. Doing anything special?

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And the Winners Are!!!

Yay! Thank you Joy for visiting with me (us?) – you have the honor of guesting/creating the most popular post ever! (At my blog, anyway.) Well done, you!

So anyway, Joy employed random.org to select the winners from her guest post – and I’m super grateful she took care of this part. (Also because I told her I wasn’t going to after I tried to wade in and was all O_o)

Tempt the Devil by Anna Campbell – 45 (Shell Bryce)
Jamesville Affairs by N J Walters – 35 (Brenda Hyde)
My Reckless Surrender by Anna Campbell – 33 (Lisa B)
Trick or Treat by N. J. Walters, Jan Springer, Charlene Teglia, Tawny Taylor – 24 (Susan R)
A Little Harmless Pleasure by Melissa Schroeder – 15 (Margie Hager)
By the Book by NJ Walters – 6  (Khadija)
If you already have the book  – or don’t want the one selected, please let me know so new winners can be drawn. Let’s say that you have until Monday night – May 30- to send me your info. Just use that handy dandy “Contact Form” at the top of my blog – and send me your address, etc. And we’ll get the prizes out to you.
I hope you all stop by again – and hey, if you weren’t lucky this time, Olivia Waite is hosting a giveaway currently, so try your luck there!

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So, everyone, you’re in for a treat today! Less of my babble, and more from a guest author! I also really like this topic, because as you can see, I like flowers and gardening as well. (Yes, all those pictures of flowers on my header/background? I took them in or around my parent’s house.) Anyway. Olivia Waite is here to talk about, well, gardening, in a way, with a really sweet post.)

My family is full of women who are gardeners — my mother, my grandmother, my great-grandmother, my aunt. There seems to be a mysterious genetic switch that gets flipped at some point and sends us into a tizzy of weeding, planting, fertilizing, pruning, and trimming.

I’m nearing thirty, and that switch is still unflipped. Every houseplant I’ve tried to tend has died. My own small backyard is a wilderness in miniature. There are the usual dandelions, strange green grasses, some small blue flowers I find appealing in a Sound of Music kind of way, and a few menacing raspberry vines that should probably be taken care of now while they’re still young and weak. If we let them get too firm in the root, they could take over the whole backyard and make it really difficult for our miniature dachshund puppy to do his business. He’s having a hard enough time with the dandelions, most of which are taller than he is.

But I must admit it’s fun to watch him sniff the white dandelion clocks and sneeze when they tickle his nose. At eight months of age, he’s never seen spring before, and it’s clearly puzzling him why the garden that was a damp and frigid huddle of muck in the winter should suddenly smell so different and grow so full of stuff.

Part of the challenge with our backyard is that it’s difficult by nature: one half is at the base of a small hill and stays perennially damp and shady, while the other half has been dried out by the leavings of the former tenant’s two dozen cats (seriously — she was kicked out by the housing board and the whole place remodeled) and not even the dandelions will touch it. The week before I got married, my mother and bridesmaids cleared out every weed in the place and put in some lovely desert grasses that were less lovely when they drowned a week later while we were on our honeymoon. I don’t want to put in anything else just to watch it die — and so, the weeds live on, smug and victorious.

And yet — I dream of moss.

Someday, when the gardening gene kicks in, I will take out all the tall plants and transplant as many kinds of moss as I can find locally or purchase in specialty stores. I did a lot of research once I realized how poor our backyard was. Moss is fairly forgiving and needs only shade and water, things we have in abundance. What’s more, there’s something soothing about moss gardens, the softness and the gentleness of them. A moss garden sounds like an excellent place for writing.

Last fall, in the flush of enthusiasm, I actually cleared a small space and gave moss transplanting a try. The transplant not only survived but flourished — and I’ve noticed other patches growing on their own around the yard, at least three different species. My transplant is a small, brilliant patch of emerald to the right of the backdoor steps. Every time I see it my heart lifts a little.

There may be hope for me as a gardener yet.

Olivia Waite stole her first romance novel at the age of five from her mother’s bedside table. She kept reading them secretly all through college and graduate school, until finally she sat down and put together a book of her own. 

Now she writes some very scandalous historical novellas for Ellora’s Cave. Caffeine gives her superpowers–or at least makes her feel that way. She lives in the Seattle area, blogs frequently, and loves emails, postcards, skywritten messages, and communication of all kinds.

Olivia has very kindly offered to do a giveaway here today, and two lucky commenters will win a book! So tell me. What do you think of gardening? Do you have a green thumb or a black thumb? Did you grow up with anyone who loved to garden?

And of course, questions for Olivia about her books are always welcome!

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I’ve talked about Swagbucks before in a post – and I mention it every so often on Twitter as well. What I like about Swagbucks is the variety of things you can get with it (NB I think it’s best to search using Swagbucks only, not any of their “partner sites”… but I digress.) What I also really like about them, is their charitable efforts. Sure, they’re probably making money, and lots of it, but they do give back. Through “Race for the Cure” type donations, and here, Tornado relief. They also have had funds for Haiti, Japan, and so on.

In fact, here’s the current Tornado Relief Fund Donation Page: http://swagbucks.com/p/prize/25155/Tornado-Relief-Fund-Donation. It ends on Tuesday, May 31, so that’s something to consider.

Now if you don’t have swagbucks yet, but would like to donate – here’s an easy way. Sign up. And, with the code provided below, you start out with five bucks. Even if you never want to use Swagbucks ever again, at least through ridiculously minimal effort, you can donate to charity and Tornado relief without spending any of your own money. (I will say, I do recommend using them otherwise. I’ve donated, and entered some sweepstakes, but otherwise I generally cash in my Swagbucks for giftcards, and in ~26 months I’ve gotten $600. Just for doing internet searches I would’ve run anyway, really.)

Swagbucks, the best place to get free stuff from searching and more is celebrating Memorial Day next week with a special Score Four and Twenty Swag Bucks promotion – they’ll have 4 special Limited Edition collector’s bills available, and if you can snag all four by the end of Thursday, you’ll get a bonus 20 Swag Bucks. ALSO, this Thursday they’re have a Swag Code Extravaganza, a day filled with fun, games and the opportunity to snag over 40 Swag Bucks worth of codes throughout the day. Be sure to visit Swagbucks all this week for opportunities to win big!

Not a member yet? Sign up through my referral link (http://www.swagbucks.com/refer/limecello) and enter the code MEMORIALDAY when prompted – it’ll pad your account with an extra 50 Swag Bucks on top of the 30 that everyone starts with. Get started earning your reward points today!

I’d provide actual links/clickable text, but WordPress seems to hate Swagbucks. And obviously Charity. Bastards. :X

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Today’s excerpt is from the upcoming book Hunter’s Fall by Shiloh Walker. It’s the newest edition to her very popular Hunters series. I’ve read a number of Shiloh’s books before, and Broken (different series) was one of my favorite books of 2010. Really, top three at the very least.  But enough of me – why you’re all here – the excerpt!)

UNKNOWN PAST

Something strange is happening to Nessa. Ever since she survived a near-death experience she’s not exactly who she used to be—and enjoying every minute of it. Then she’s called upon to go to battle against darkness. If only she could remember why.

UNEXPECTED LOVER

Dominic is having his own problems with memory, sanity, and hallucinations. Sent to Excelsior, the covert Hunter training facility, he senses a female presence that seems so hauntingly familiar. That’s because he and Nessa share a forgotten past.

UNSEEN EVIL

As Nessa and Dominic regain their memories, their strange mission against evil becomes clearer. And all the more dangerous because whether they should trust each other is the still the greatest unknown of all.

With startling clarity, he could remember the dream. His witch, standing at the edge of a skyscraper, staring down like she longed for nothing more than to step off the edge into oblivion. And the vampire.

This vampire.

He didn’t realize he was growling.

He didn’t realize he had lunged for the vampire.

Not until a pale hand closed around his throat and he was suspended in the air. Dominic didn’t give a flying fuck—he couldn’t choke to death.

“You fucking moron, do you have a death wish?” the vampire snarled.

Lashing out with a foot, Dominic demanded, “Where in the fuck is she?”

“Who are you talking about?” Dark blue eyes stared at him. They glowed with banked power. Dominic could feel that power, battering at him, slamming into him and threatening to send him back to his knees. Except he was still dangling several feet in the air.

Half-crazed, Dominic felt the bloodlust rise in him and he tore at the other vampire’s hand, instinctively trying to break that grasp. Pain shot through him as the vamp’s hand tightened, crushing his throat.

“Where in the fuck is she?” he demanded again.

Or at least that was what he tried to say. It came out “Waaaa . . .” His throat was crushed and he could taste his own blood.

Yield.

The vampire hadn’t spoken.

His blue eyes bored into Dominic, glowing. Yield.

But Dominic could still smell her. Could still feel her presence, though it was fading.

The fingers on his throat tightened. But instead of scrabbling at the hand that held him effortlessly in the air, Dominic took his fist and used it to smash at the vampire’s elbow. Distantly, he heard bone crack.

He hit the floor, but he had only about two seconds to enjoy it before he was sent flying across the room. He crashed into the wall, oblivious to anything and everything.

Isn’t Shiloh evil?! She definitely took the “tease” part to heart, no? 😉 Publishers limit the number of words you can have posted as excerpts in total, and as this is an exclusive one, Shiloh’s running close to her limit. Solution if you want more? Buy the book and then you can read all of it! So. Have you read any of Shiloh’s books before? Is there a particular sub-genre she writes that you prefer?

Personally, I’m super excited for her upcoming Romantic Suspense trilogy – and that’s saying something as it’s not even a genre I generally gravitate towards.

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