How Well Should Two People Know Each Other Before They Marry…?

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By Alyssa Everett, author of THE MARRIAGE ACT

Better than these unhappy couples…
When I was in college, one of my favorite instructors was a grad student who had met, proposed to, and eloped with the woman he married, all in the space of three weeks. They were blissfully happy together, and I hope that hasn’t changed, because the theme of his story was the sheer madness of having married on such short acquaintance.

Anne of Cleves

Henry VIII agreed to marry Anne after seeing this portrait by Hans Holbein.
Hans Holbein the Younger [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Take the case of King Henry VIII’s marriage to his fourth wife, Anne of Cleves. Henry had never met the Lutheran princess, but his chief minister, the staunchly protestant Thomas Cromwell, urged the match. Henry agreed to marry Anne after viewing her portrait, but when the pair came face to face for the first time, Henry was less than impressed. He went through with the ceremony, but never consummated the marriage, saying after their wedding night, “I liked her not well before, but now I like her much worse.” Anne wisely chose not to contest an annulment, and Thomas Cromwell went on to lose both the king’s favor and his head.

Even when couples think they know each other, first impressions can be misleading. In 1777, Mary Bowes, the widowed Countess of Strathmore, met an army officer named Andrew Robinson Stoney. When insulting articles about the countess appeared in London’s Morning Post, Stoney leaped to her defense, not only responding in print, but even challenging the editor to a duel. Mary had no idea that Stoney had written the insults as well as the responses, and that the duel was only a ruse. Pretending to be mortally wounded, Stoney persuaded Mary to marry him. He took his vows from a stretcher, but the two were no sooner wed than Stoney recovered as if by magic. He made Mary’s life miserable—forcing her to sign over protected assets, abusing her, holding her prisoner. He consorted with prostitutes and even raped the servants. It took the help of loyal servants for Mary to escape. When she filed for divorce, Stoney abducted her. He was eventually arrested, but that didn’t stop him from publishing scandalous details of Mary’s past affairs. The resulting divorce proceedings blackened Mary’s name and dragged on until her death. Stoney was so unprincipled that, decades later, William Makepeace Thackeray used him as the model for the fortune-hunting cad in The Luck of Barry Lyndon.

My newest regency, The Marriage Act, is about a marriage that gets off to a similarly disastrous start.

The Marriage Act

London, 1821

When John, Viscount Welford, proposed to Caroline Fleetwood, the only daughter of the Bishop of Essex, he thought he knew exactly what he was getting—a lovely, innocent bride.

Five years later, he knows better. The woman who ran to another man on their wedding night—after they’d consummated the marriage—is hardly innocent. Years spent apart while John served as a diplomatic attaché have allowed them to save face in society, but all good pretenses must come to an end. When Caroline receives word that her father is dying, she begs John to accompany her on one last journey to see him.

But there’s an added problem—Caroline never told her father that her marriage to John was a farce. As they play-act for others, Caroline is delighted to find she never really knew her husband at all. But can she be the kind of wife he needs—and does she want to be?

 

THE MARRIAGE ACT is available now from CarinaPress.com and your favorite ebook retailer:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GooglePlay | iBooks | Kobo

 

What’s your best (or worst) whirlwind courtship story? Do you know any couples who rushed into marriage? How did it turn out?

Alyssa Everett

The Marriage Act is Alyssa Everett’s fifth regency romance. She hopes you’ll visit her website and follow her on Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook, where she promises not to spam you relentlessly.

 

Eight Things Kai Learns about Dragons

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By Caitlyn McFarland, author of SOUL OF SMOKE

 

In my novel, Soul of Smoke, more-or-less normal college student Kai Monahan discovers dragon shapeshifters hiding in the Rocky Mountains. When they abduct her, she’s got plenty of time to learn a few things.

1. They’re really into shiny things.



2. When human, they are uncomfortably attractive.

Dear sweet mother of holy hotness. Her stomach clenched and she had a moment of panic. She didn’t remember him being hot. She didn’t know how to deal with guys who looked like that. She would rather face Ashem. “Um, sorry. I was looking for…uh…the bathroom.” Kill me.

Something that might have been a smile twitched the corner of his mouth. “It’s off the main cavern. Before the kitchen.”

http://couldthisbemoreawkward.tumblr.com/post/114946712667/when-i-see-a-couple-fight-in-public

3. If you mess with them, prepare to pay a price.
http://tana-the-dreamchaser.tumblr.com/post/104310494963

4. They have awesome tattoos… but made of scales.




 

5. There are many definitions of the word “hoard.”

The room, as large as the cavern above, was filled with…everything. A tall, ancient stone covered in cuneiform stood next to a desk-sized record player with what looked suspiciously like a Faberge egg sitting on top. A large pile of yellow-black rocks dominated the right front corner of the room. Filing cabinets and shelves lined the walls, the only order in the chaos. “You said this was storage. It’s a freaking museum.” “Don’t you know anything about dragons?” He flung his arm wide, encompassing the immense cave and all it held. “This is the hoard.” “I thought a dragon’s hoard was treasure.” She gestured at his bracelets, armbands, and pendants. “I thought you were wearing the hoard.” “Ah, brânwen, history is treasure.” He jerked his head toward the pile of rocks in the corner. “But over there you’ll find gold ore and uncut gems.” His grin went wicked. “And I bet Deryn would loan you a crown if you asked.”

6. They’re fighting a hidden war.



Rhys shifted his right arm, blanched, then ran his left hand through his hair, mussing it before smoothing it down, making the scaled design twisting over the right side of his chest glimmer crimson in the firelight. When he spoke, his voice was weary. “We’re at war.”

“Oh.” She digested that for a moment. Dragons flying around and trying to kill each other a few hours outside of Denver. It didn’t compute. “War over what?”

He raised an eyebrow. “Power.”

7. Magic isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
http://thehogwartslist.tumblr.com/post/46985198180/hey-guys-hey

8. No matter what happens next, there is no back to normal.



SOUL OF SMOKE by Caitlyn McFarland

25273071On a hike deep in the Rocky Mountains, Kai Monahan watches as a dozen dragons–actual freaking dragons–battle beneath a fat white moon. When one crashes nearly dead at her feet and transforms into a man, Kai does the only thing a decent person could: she grabs the nearest sword and saves his life.

As the dragon/man, Rhys, recovers from the attack, a chance brush of skin against skin binds him inextricably to Kai. Becoming heartsworn to a human–especially such a compelling one–is the last thing Rhys wants. But with an ancient enemy gathering to pit dragons against humanity and his strength nearly depleted, Kai has just become the one thing Rhys needs. A complete bond will give him the strength to fight; a denied bond means certain death.

Kai is terrified at the thought of allowing any dragon into her mind…or her heart. Accepting the heartswearing and staying with the dragons means sacrificing everything, and Kai must decide if her freedom is worth risking Rhys’s life–a life more crucial to the fate of humanity than she could possibly know.

Book One of the Dragonsworn trilogy
91,000 words


Available now at CarinaPress.com and your favorite ebook retailer:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GooglePlay | iBooks | Kobo

Originally from the Midwest, Caitlyn McFarland currently lives in Utah with her husband and three young daughters. She has a Bachelor’s degree in linguistics from Brigham Young University. When she’s not writing about dragons or running around after her daughters, she can be found hunched over a sewing machine making elaborate princess costumes.


Connect with Caitlyn!
Twitter | Facebook | Website

6 Cool Things I Learned Writing Ether & Elephants

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By Cindy Spencer Pape, author of ETHER & ELEPHANTS

I love doing research for my stories. I’m always learning something new, and Ether & Elephants was no exception. There were so many things I didn’t know about Victorian India!

  1. During the Victorian era, Calcutta (now Kolkata) was the capital of The Indian Empire, which went all the way from Afghanistan to Thailand.

770px-IndiaPolitical1893ConstablesHandAtlas

  1. Indian elephants are smaller and easier to train than African elephants. They also have smaller ears and tusks.

Asian Elephant at Corbett National Park4

  1. Rubies and sapphires are the same mineral, corundum. Only the red or reddish ones are called rubies. Indian rubies are often opaque and pink.

Ruby_cristal

  1. Many buildings in Victorian Calcutta were constructed in chunks in England, then shipped to India, assembled and stuccoed. Bright colors were and still are, popular.

IPGMER SSKM Woodburn

  1. The Viceroy of India was entitled to all the same protocols as a monarch, unless the Queen herself was present. In E&E, Lord Elgin, the second Viceroy was in charge. Instead of “Your Majesty,” he was called “Your Excellency.” His residence was known as “Government House.”

LordJamesBruceElgin

  1. There are dozens of ways to wear a sari. Brightly colored or embroidered silk can represent fertility and wealth.

Styles of Sari

If you could travel anywhere in the world by airship, where would you go? I’ll pick one reply at random for a free download!

 

 

CARINA_0715_EtherAndElephants
(The Gaslight Chronicles are) possibly the ultimate in steampunk romance! —Library Journal
Sir Thomas Devere and Eleanor Hadrian have loved each other most of their lives—but sometimes love doesn’t conquer all.
Their chance at happiness was ruined by Tom’s hasty marriage to someone else. Heartbroken, Nell left home, finding a new life as a teacher at a school for the blind. But when one of her supernaturally gifted students, Charlie, is kidnapped, Tom reappears and her worlds collide.
Tom claims he hasn’t seen his wife since the day of their marriage…yet he fears the missing student could be his son.

The deeper they dig, the more Tom and Nell discover: a deadly alchemist, more missing gifted children and long-suppressed feelings neither of them is ready for. A race on airship across England and India may lead them to answers—including a second chance at love—but only if all of British Society isn’t destroyed first.

 

ETHER & ELEPHANTS is available now from CarinaPress.com or your favorite ebook retailer:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GooglePlay | iBooks | Kobo

 

Cindy Spencer Pape firmly believes in happily-ever-after and brings that to her writing. Award-winning author of 20 novels and more than 30 shorter works, Cindy lives in southeast Michigan with her husband, two sons, granddaughter, and a houseful of pets. When not hard at work writing, she can be found dressing up for steampunk parties and Renaissance fairs, or with her nose buried in a book.

Website: http://www.cindyspencerpape.com (http://bit.ly/ybxKjP )
Newsletter group: http://yhoo.it/ni7PHo
Twitter: http://twitter.com/CindySPape
Facebook: http://on.fb.me/gjbLLC

Friends to Lovers Romances

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By A.M. Arthur, author of FINDING THEIR WAY

I’ve always been a fan of the friends-to-lovers romance trope.  I enjoy reading it in romance novels, seeing it in films, and especially watching it unfold over time on a television series. You get to see a relationship build between two characters before it becomes sexual, which often establishes an even stronger foundation for their HEA. My upcoming Carina m/m romance release, Finding Their Way, uses the friends-to-lovers trope, allowing my heroes a chance to get to know each other, find common ground, and slowly fall in love.

Below are (in no particular order) ten of my favorite examples of friends-to-lovers romances from various media formats.

  1. Served Hot, by Annabeth Albert (novel). Robby’s slow-burn crush on the standoff-ish David creates a fun, sweet story.
  1. Walk the Line (movie). This fictional recounting of the real life love story of June Carter Cash and Johnny Cash is one of my favorite movies.
  1. The Assignment, by Evangeline Anderson (novel). Some folks may label this one as gay-for-you, but since Valenti and O’Brian are long-time partners with a years-long relationship, I like this for an angsty, drama-filled friends-to-lovers m/m romance.
  1. Kaylee/Simon, Firefly/Serenity (TV show/movie). Fellow Firefly fans will probably agree that this one the most anticipated pairings of the short-lived series. Their flirtation was almost immediate, the chemistry intense, and I definitely cheered when Simon finally had his “ah ha!” moment in Serenity.
  1. Shades of Gray, by Maya Banks (novel). Part of an m/f romantic suspense series, this particular installment brought together PJ and Cole, two members of an elite squad of private sector soldiers.
  1. Nobody’s Hero, by J. Leigh Bailey (novel). A fun, heartbreaking new adult m/m romance, I can’t say enough good things about Bradley and Danny’s story.
  1. Anastasia (movie). Don’t laugh. Yes, I’m talking about the 1997 animated film/musical with Bartok the Bat. It’s awesome.

  1. Love Lessons, by Heidi Cullinan (novel). Walter takes the very naïve Kelly under his wing and never expects to fall for his charge in a fantastic new adult m/m romance.
  1. Monica and Chandler, Friends. Do I really have to explain this one?
  1. Latter Days (movie). This is without a doubt one of my favorite movies ever. A closeted gay Mormon missionary moves to Los Angeles, and meets flashy, very out Christian. Christian makes a bet with his friends that he can seduce Aaron, but what starts as a challenge becomes so much more.

 

What are some of your favorite friends-to-lovers romances?

 

CARINA_0715_9781426899904_FindingTheirWayThanks to an abusive father and a string of bad relationships, Riley McCage learned the hard way that people are not kind without a reason. Now, after landing a job at popular gay bar Pot O Gold, Riley is on the right track—until the night Boxer finds him drunk and drugged in the back room of an exclusive sex party.

Donald “Boxer” Boxwood wasn’t looking for anything beyond some casual kink until he peeled Riley off the floor and gave him a safe place to stay. But there’s something compelling about the guy crashing on his couch, and the two forge an instant friendship that eases into unmistakable attraction. Despite Riley’s hesitancy, Boxer knows one thing to be true: he needs Riley in his life.

Riley risked everything to run away and build a new life for himself, and his secrets aren’t something he’d ever wish upon his kind, gentle new friend. But when the past comes to call, he’ll have no choice but to put his trust in Boxer…and believe people can change enough to deserve a second chance.

Book two of The Restoration Series

 

Available now at CarinaPress.com or your favorite ebook retailer:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GooglePlay | iBooks | Kobo

A.M. Arthur was born and raised in the same kind of small town that she likes to write about, a stone’s throw from both beach resorts and generational farmland.  She’s been creating stories in her head since she was a child and scribbling them down nearly as long, in a losing battle to make the fictional voices stop.

Connect with A.M. Arthur!
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Join us for our #RWA15 spotlight—even if you’re not attending RWA!

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You’re cordially invited to attend the Carina Press RWA Spotlight
When: Friday, July 24 2p–3p Eastern
Where: NYC Marriott Times Square
Imperial/Julliard
Or
Via Periscope, link to be posted at www.twitter.com/angelajames 5 minutes before start of spotlight.

Every year we strive to make sure we’re giving authors who attend RWA the best possible experience and information when they attend the Carina Press Spotlight. Three years ago, we devoted half of our spotlight session to an author/audience Q&A, where we left the room and audience members asked a panel of Carina Press authors whatever they wanted. That feature was so popular that we did it again last year, and we’ll be repeating it one more time at this year’s spotlight.

But there are several things new to this year’s spotlight: First, rather than just hearing me talk, this year attendees will hear from our author concierge, representatives from marketing, PR, and Kerri Buckley (Senior Editor for Carina Press). By having everyone speak, we hope to give authors a clear insight into the team approach we take at Carina Press.

The other new thing for this year’s spotlight, and something I’m super excited to be able to do: even if you’re not attending RWA, you can still attend our spotlight! We’ll be streaming the spotlight live via Periscope from my Twitter account! So all you need to do is watch my Twitter account here and as soon as we start streaming, a link will go out—click on it to watch the spotlight live. Please note, we will only be streaming from approximately 2p-2:35p EST, for the presentation portion of the spotlight, not the author Q&A, as that Q&A is meant to Carina-Press-spotlight-swagbe private for attendees present in the room. That portion will also not be recorded for RWA recordings.

As if attending the spotlight and getting entranced by our brilliance, wit and wisdom isn’t enough, we also have a great amount of swag for attendees this year (sorry, this is one thing we can’t beam through the internet for those watching from home and work).

I hope you will join us for this year’s spotlight. We’ve put a lot of thought into giving you the information and insight about our program we think you’re looking for.

 

When: Friday, July 24 2p–3p Eastern
Where: NYC Marriott Times Square
Imperial/Julliard
Or
Via Periscope, link to be posted at www.twitter.com/angelajames 5 minutes before start of spotlight.

The Kinkier the Sex, the Higher the Price

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By Jeffe Kennedy, author of UNDER CONTRACT

In UNDER CONTRACT, Ryan and Celestina share linked tablets, with a special app that lets them plan their next session of kinky sex. Sometimes he sends her images, as in this scene:

“Mr. Black mentioned you’d be working on your tablet, so I have the window up. Drive should take about twenty minutes. Just use the intercom if you need to stop anywhere.”

At least that spared her idle chitchat while she struggled to keep herself from going crazy with need. Taking the remark about the tablet as a hint, she swiped it on and found Ryan had sent a number of pictures for her to look at. As if she needed more stimulation. However, he’d asked her to comment on each, at least a like or dislike.

One showed a woman tied on her hands and knees with a vivid red handprint on her white skin. It felt like fatally exposing herself, to click the heart on that and others. That he would no doubt keep a record and revisit them with her in person.

Or on her person.

Here’s some of the mildly NSFW—Not Safe For Work (or kids or nosy strangers on the train)—images I imagine he might have sent her.

http://erotismo-italiano.tumblr.com/post/119778790129

http://americansinner86.tumblr.com/post/52845652298/weave-me-a-rope-that-will-pull-me-through-these

http://bdsm-and-more.tumblr.com/post/113210143471

http://bdsm-and-more.tumblr.com/post/116258892630

http://oy-rcm.tumblr.com/post/67444700412

http://summertime75.tumblr.com/post/85458065382/chained-http-wp-me-shdxr-chained-eve-grey

What about you—would you be brave enough to “like” one of these, knowing it might happen to you?

CARINA_0715_9781459290013_UnderContractThe kinkier the sex, the higher the price tag…

Ryan Black has admired Celestina Sala from afar for years, her lush body and sensual nature calling to the dominant in him. For just as many years, Celestina was off-limits—married, proud and self-sufficient. But all that has changed, and now Celestina is in debt and in need…and available. Ryan proposes a contract: he’ll pay off her debt if she gives herself to him in bed, yielding control in exchange for the pain and pleasure he’ll bring them both.

There are words for women who take money for sex, and none of them are nice ones. Celestina never thought she’d have to sink this low, but giving up control sounds more enticing than ever before. And suddenly it’s not about having to give in to Ryan. It’s about wanting to.

But when Ryan’s dark past comes to light, they may both be in over their heads. The terms of his contract say her body is his…but her heart may be another story.

One thing is for sure—now that Ryan has Celestina, he can never let her go.

Available now from Carina Press and your favorite ebook retailer:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GooglePlay | iBooks | Kobo
Jeffe Kennedy is an award-winning author with a writing career that spans decades. Her works include non-fiction, poetry, short fiction, and novels.

She lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico, with two Maine coon cats, plentiful free-range lizards and a very handsome Doctor of Oriental Medicine.

Jeffe can be found online at her website: JeffeKennedy.com, every Sunday at the popular Word Whores blog, on her naughty Tumblr (http://jeffescloset.tumblr.com) and pretty much constantly on Twitter @jeffekennedy.

Bad Breakups — A Playlist

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By Christi Barth, author of BACK TO US

Bad breakups (I’ll pause and give you time to both reminisce and groan). We’ve all had them. I once ate an entire Caramel Pecan French Silk Supreme Pie  in one sitting, and I was even the one who did the dumping! No matter whether you are the dumpee or dumper, filled with righteous indignation or hurt beyond belief, it is hard.

Crazy as it sounds, I wrote an entire book (Back to Us, Book 3 in the Shore Secrets trilogy, available now!) about high school sweethearts who broke up—horribly—and then somehow managed to go back to being friends. Of course there is more to it than that. Secretly, they both still loved each other and lo and behold, Ward tricks Piper into trying to date him again ten years later.

But the point is, break-ups suck. I created a Spotify playlist of songs dealing with break-ups from musicals. Not just because I’m a musical theatre geek (which I most definitely am!), but because, in theory, people break into song because there is too much emotion to hold in – like when your heart is broken. Please bop over and check it out.

The first song (by the incomparable Stephen Sondheim) sums up Piper and Ward’s relationship perfectly:

I’d love for you to share your break-up songs with me below. I can always use them in the next book! Here’s a peek at how Piper dealt with it:

“The last time Ward and I broke up, I ate a steady diet of nothing but butter pecan ice cream and tortilla chips for three days. My television never turned off and my butt didn’t leave the couch. That’s how you wallow. This?” Piper waved a hand at the pristine nature surrounding them. Stupid colorful trees with their picture perfect autumn-hued leaves. Sun sparkling on the lake like a field of blue diamonds. “I need a whole other day to wallow over how much I’m not wallowing right now.”

Ella gave her a sympathetic look. Tugged on the end of Piper’s cream scarf. Kept a hold of it, turned around and speedwalked backwards, pulling Piper along. “You were nineteen last time. Did you gain any weight after that three day ice cream splurge?”

“No.”

Giving the scarf a final flap, Ella bounced back into step with the other two. “If you did it today, we’d have to go buy you new pants.”

“For the inevitable mushrooming of your currently perfect ass.” Casey goosed her and then darted away with a laugh.

“And as much as we love shopping, break ups are sad enough. You shouldn’t be punished by gaining weight on top of it.”

25164406

Ward Cantrell always went for the long shot. But that recklessness cost him his college scholarship and his chance to play pro ball, and—worst of all—it ended his relationship with the girl next door. Neither the town nor the girl has ever forgiven him. Now he’s taking one last long shot by opening a boutique distillery on the family farm he inherited.

Piper Morrissey spent high school in Ward’s shadow, but she’s come into her own in the years since. Maintaining her spotless image, and that of her family’s winery, is priority number one. Nobody knows that she still yearns for her golden-boy ex. Or at least they didn’t—until Ward agrees to sell Piper the land she needs to start her precious port line. The caveat? She’ll need to date him for one month.

Ward hopes a month is all it’ll take to convince his former sweetheart that while he’s changed, his love for her hasn’t. But when the chance arises to thumb his nose at the town that turned its back on him, he can’t afford not to reject Piper’s offer. Will that make her reject him and his love—for good?

 

Available now from Carina Press and your favorite ebook retailer:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GooglePlay | iBooks | Kobo

 

Christi Barth earned a Masters degree in vocal performance and embarked upon a career on the stage. A love of romance then drew her to wedding planning. Ultimately she succumbed to her lifelong love of books and now writes contemporary romance. Christi lives in Maryland with her husband.

10 Things I’ve Learned from Writing Historical Fiction

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By Kari Edgren, author of AN IMMORTAL DESCENT

The Goddess Born series is set in the eighteenth century, which has allowed me to spend a great deal of time living in the past. Here are some interesting tidbits I’ve picked up along the way.

Ten Things I’ve learned from Writing Historical Fiction

  1. European men started wearing high heels in the sixteen hundreds. Women followed suit to masculinize their outfits.



  1. The English fancied curse words that started with the letter B, e.g., Ballocks, Blast, Bloody and Bugger were four favorites.



  1. On matters of equality, Quakers were centuries ahead of their time. While slavery plagued much of the known world, they were the first organization to officially ban the practice in the mid seventeen hundreds.



  1. Europeans in general were very fond of witch-hunts. Between 1450 and 1750, tens of thousands of people were executed for witchcraft, two-thirds of these being women. Torture was a must for the best confessions. Preferred methods of execution included drowning, hanging, and fire, though there was the occasional beheading.



  1. Europeans were equally fond of dueling. The French mastered the art, conducting approximately 10,000 duels between 1685 and 1716. The art reached new heights in 1808 when two Frenchmen took their quarrel to the Parisian sky and fought a duel from hot air balloons. The loser was shot down and died on impact along with his second.



  1. Not all women played by the rules. Princess Amelia, second daughter of King George II, is believed to have had an affair with a commoner that resulted in the composer Samuel Arnold.



  1. For several hundred years, Europeans of all ranks practiced medicinal cannibalism by ingesting remedies that contained bones, blood and fat taken from human corpses. This practice peaked in the seventeen hundreds.



  1. Flowery language was all the rage. Form and flourish mattered in conversation, as did word count, and one never said in ten words what could be better said in thirty.



  1. “You sexy beast you…” From the sixteen to eighteen hundreds, high-ranking women used their fans to carry on whole conversations without uttering a single word. A fan held in the left hand indicated a desire for company. A tap to the right cheek signified “yes”, while a tap to the left was a resounding “no”. Drop your fan and it was off to private nook for a clandestine affair.



  1. Historical people were suspicious of raw fruits and vegetables. That’s right, give them a corpse to gnaw on, but keep the fresh produce away.



25527254Selah Kilbrid, descendant of the Celtic goddess Brigid, has been ordered to remain in London and leave any dangers in Ireland to her goddess-born family. They fear she’s no match for Death’s most powerful daughter and—if the legend holds true—the witch who once nearly destroyed the Irish people. But Selah has never been good at following orders, and nothing will stop her from setting out to find the two people she loves most—her dearest friend, Nora Goodwin, and her betrothed, Lord Henry Fitzalan.

Hiding from kin, traveling uneasily beside companions with secrets of their own, Selah is forced on an unexpected path by those who would steal her gift of healing. With precious time ticking away, she turns to a mortal enemy for help, heedless of the cost.

Selah would pass through hell to rescue Nora and Henry, but what if it means unleashing a greater evil on the human world? Her only chance is to claim the fullest extent of her birthright—at the risk of being forever separated from the man she longs to marry.

Book three of Goddess Born


Available now from Carina Press or your favorite ebook retailer:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GooglePlay | iBooks | Kobo

Top Five Things I Love About Steampunk

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By Eleri Stone, author of THE ADVENTURES OF CASSIUS FLYNN AND MOLLY McGUIRE

 

Steampunk is a mash-up of science fiction and alternate history. The stories are often set in Victorian England, but there are plenty of western tales out there too.  It’s a sometimes dark, always twisted, FUN genre full of adventure and romance. Some of the things I love most about it are…

  • The clothes. Who doesn’t love a corset?

 

http://colinridiculous.tumblr.com/post/88554192661

  • The interesting forms of transportation

 

http://contentimus.tumblr.com/post/47969443776/contentimus

  • Mad Science!

 

http://clockworker.tumblr.com/post/275883933/baron-von-fogel-via-lex-machina

  • Romance shines brighter in a dark world

 


  • Sci-Fi + Re-imagined History = Lots of crazy adventure

 

http://very-fancy.tumblr.com/post/95683323667/madddscience-bruce-campbell-rides-a-rocket

 

The Adventures of Cassius Flynn and Molly McGuire is a western-set story about a pair of semi-reformed airship smugglers who are out to pull off one last job.

A Reapers novellaCARINA_0615_9781459290532_Cassius_Molly

Cassius Flynn is a smuggler. An outlaw. A scoundrel. Charming, devilishly handsome in a maverick sort of way and fiendishly clever to boot. He’s also the only man Molly McGuire has ever loved.

Molly’d left him a year ago. Stolen his airship, broken his heart and made him look like a damn fool. Still, he’s rushed to her rescue, storming into Reaper territory to snatch her out from under the repulsive bounty hunter who brought her in.

High above the plains, up among the clouds in the most rarefied Scraper city of them all, a ruthless statesman has stolen everything Cassius considers important. And without Molly, without her quick hands, sharp mind and pretty face, he doesn’t stand a chance of getting it back…

What’s your favorite thing about Steampunk?

Available now from Carina Press or your favorite ebook retailer:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GooglePlay | iBooks | Kobo

 

Eleri Stone is a RITA-nominated author of paranormal and fantasy romance. She was born in New Jersey, but now lives in Iowa with her husband and their three children. All of her stories have some element of speculative fiction in them and they all end with a happily-ever-after.

 

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Vlad the Bad…revealed!

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By Elizabeth Harmon, author of TURNING IT ON

 

Not only does music put me in the mood to write, often a song will inspire my story and shape my characters.

That’s been especially true for the Red Hot Russians heroes, who are, or have been, figure skaters.  But their musical personalities extend beyond the classical music they perform to.

In TURNING IT ON, former ice dancer Vlad Shustov now struts his stuff as one of Miami’s hottest male strippers. But Vlad the Bad has another dream—to become a best-selling horror novelist like his idol Stephen King.  An odd mix?  Not really. The best figure skaters weave stories into their programs, and I realized Vlad would take the same approach to stripping.

We see Vlad strip to four songs and not only does each dance show off his gorgeous body, it reveals a bit of the gentle heart behind his sexy, bad boy image.

Applause– Lady Gaga.  Vlad portrays a bad boy movie star when he strips to this song about fame and fortune. He’s just been cast in “Last Fling,” TV’s steamiest reality show, and though he has doubts about whether it was the right thing to do, the show will change his life in ways he can’t yet imagine.

Hard To Handle– Black Crowes.  As a Miami stripper, Vlad’s life is all about wild parties and even wilder women. Though he looks hard to handle, what he really wants is to be worthy of the love of a special woman, someone like shy book editor and fellow contestant Hannah.

Calling Dr. Love– KISS.  This song fits Vlad well, especially the line “even though I’m full of sin, in the end you’ll let me in.” Once she sees the man Vlad truly is, Hannah is eager to do so.

Stronger– Kelly Clarkson. Though Vlad doesn’t choose his final strip song, “Last Fling” has  definitely proven that  what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. “Last Fling” and Hannah’s love have given him the strength to leave his past behind, and become the man he truly wants to be. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xn676-fLq7I

What song do you love to dance to? Does it evoke a favorite memory, or inspire you? Share your comments below.

 

CARINA_0615_9781426899959_TurningItOnBook editor Hannah Levinson couldn’t be happier. This “Nice Jewish Girl” is ready to marry the man she’s longed after for half her life. When her fiancé suggests they audition for Last Fling, a steamy new reality show for engaged couples, she lets herself be swayed. Maybe she’ll learn a thing or two.

Vlad Shustov’s fall from a once-bright career as a competitive figure skater was swift. Now trapped by a shameful past and an uncertain future, “Vlad the Bad” strips for cash. Joining the cast of Last Fling could earn him a fortune—or at least enough to finally leave stripping. But to win the show’s prize, he must seduce an engaged woman, something he can’t even bear the thought of.

Hannah’s not like any woman Vlad’s met before. Betrayed by the man she thought she loved and relegated to the ugly-duckling role she’d worked so hard to shed, can she trust there’s more to Vlad than meets the eye? With sleazy TV tactics shattering the last shreds of the contestants’ confidence, they’ll have to believe true happiness is not only possible…it may be looking right at them.

For more Red Hot Russians, don’t miss Pairing Off—available now!

96,000 words

Available now from Carina Press or your favorite ebook retailer!
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GooglePlay | iBooks | Kobo


An adventurous cook, vintage home enthusiast, occasional actress, and entry-level figure skater, Elizabeth Harmon makes her home in the Midwest, where life is good, but the sports teams aren’t. She loves to hang out on her front porch, or at her favorite local establishments, enjoy good food and wine, and talk writing with anyone who will listen.

A graduate of the University of Illinois, she has worked in advertising, community journalism and as a freelance magazine writer. She feels incredibly blessed to have a career that allows her to spend her days imagining “what if?” and a loving family that keeps her grounded in the real world.

Elizabeth is a member of Romance Writers of America.  Enjoy her other Carina Red Hot Russians releases, PAIRING OFF, and GETTING IT BACK, (March 2016).