Showing posts with label book blast. Show all posts
Showing posts with label book blast. Show all posts

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Romance is in the Air Giveaway


GIVEAWAY
Romance is in the Air -
A Celebration of Clean Romance

Romance is in the Air - A Celebration of Clean Romance

During February and March, we will be featuring 14 fabulous authors who write clean romance. We will be giving away $500 in prizes, so be sure you are following us and Clean Wholesome Romance, so you don’t miss any chances to win!
We’re starting off with a $100 Kick-Off giveaway. One lucky winner will receive a $100 Amazon gift card or $100 PayPal cash.
Just look at this amazing group of authors we will be featuring:




Giveaway
Enter the blast-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $100 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash.



Wednesday, February 13, 2019

"Going Home" by Judith Keim


NEW RELEASE and EXCERPT
Going Home
(Chandler Hill Inn Book 1)
by Judith Keim

Going Home (Chandler Hill Inn Book 1) by Judith Keim

This book blitz and giveaway for Going Home by Judith Keim is hosted by Reading Addiction Book Tours. Please be sure to visit the other participating blogs as well.


Description
In 1970, Violet Hawkins’ only wish at eighteen is to escape her life in the Dayton, Ohio, foster-care system and make her way to the west coast to enjoy a mellow life and find the love she’s been missing all her life. She makes it to San Francisco, but soon learns she needs a job if she’s to live properly. A kind, young man named Kenton Chandler offers her a sandwich and a job at his father’s inn and vineyards. With nothing to lose, Lettie takes him up on his offer and begins a whole new life in the Willamette Valley, Oregon. She immediately falls in love with the land and is fascinated with the idea of growing grapes in order to make wines. She, Kenton, and Rafe Lopez become friends as she learns about running the small inn on the property.
At the same time she marries Kenton, a stroke kills his father. And then before she can tell Kenton she’s pregnant, he dies in an automobile accident. Heartbroken and burdened with the gift of the Chandler Hill Inn and Winery, she’s left with the task of making them a success. Struggling to raise a child alone while working to grow the business, Lettie makes a shocking discovery that changes everything.


Excerpt
Chapter One
Some people’s lives unfold in the most unusual ways.
In 1970, the only things Violet Hawkins wanted for her eighteenth birthday were to escape the Dayton, Ohio, foster-care system in which she’d been raised and to make her way to San Francisco. There, she hoped to enjoy a mellow lifestyle and find the love that had always been absent in her life.
Though she made it to San Francisco easily enough, she soon discovered she couldn’t afford a clean, safe place in which to settle down. At first, it hadn’t seemed to matter. Caught up in the excitement and freedom of living in a large city where free love and openness to so many things reigned, she almost forgot about eating and sleeping. One couch, one futon was as good as any other as long as grass or other drugs were available, and others didn’t mind giving her a place to sleep. But after spending four months there, the dollars she’d carefully saved, which had seemed so many in Dayton, were nothing but a mere pittance in a city where decent living was too expensive for her. She took to wandering the streets with her backpack until she came upon a friendly group willing to give her a sleeping space inside or a bite to eat.
One June day, feeling discouraged, she’d just sunk down onto the steps outside a row house when a young man emerged.
He smiled down at her. “Tired?”
She was more than tired. She was exhausted and hungry. “Looking for work. I need to eat.”
He gave her a long, steady, blue-eyed look. “What’s your name?”
“Violet Hawkins. But call me Lettie.”
His eyebrows shot up. “With all that red hair, no flowery name for you?”
She shook her head. She’d always hated both her hair and her name. The red in her hair was a faded color, almost pink, and the name Violet indicated a delicate flower. She’d never had the luxury of being the least bit frail.
He sat down beside her and studied her. “You don’t look like the hippie type. What are you doing in a place like this?”
“On my eighteenth birthday, I left Dayton, Ohio, to come here. It sounded like a great plan—all this freedom.”
“How long have you been here?”
“Four months. I thought it would be different. I don’t know … easier, maybe.”
He got to his feet. “How about I fix you a sandwich, and then I’ll tell you about a job, if you want it. It’s at a vineyard in Oregon. I’m heading there later today.”
Her glance slid over his well-built body, rugged facial features, and clean, shoulder-length, light-brown hair. He didn’t fit into the usual crowd she’d been with, which made her cautious. “Who are you? And why would you do this for me?”
“Kenton Chandler.” His lips curved into the same warm smile he’d given her earlier. “I’m heading to Oregon, and, frankly, I could use the company. Keeps me from falling asleep.”
“Yeah? And what is this vineyard?”
He shrugged. “A couple of years ago, my dad bought a small inn with 75 acres in the Willamette Valley south of Portland. He’s planted most of the land with grapes. He doesn’t know that much about making wine and wants me to learn. That’s why I’m in San Francisco. I’ve been working at a vineyard in Napa Valley just north of here, learning the ropes.” He grinned. “Or maybe I should say, learning the vines.”
“What kind of sandwich?” she asked, warming toward him and his wacky humor. Her stomach rumbled loud enough for them both to hear it.
“How does ham and Swiss sound?” he said, giving her a knowing look.
“Okay.” Lettie didn’t want him to think she couldn’t manage on her own. That was dangerous. She’d learned it the hard way, fighting off a guy who thought he could have her just because he gave her a puff of weed. She’d been careful ever since to stay away from situations and guys like that.
“Well?” He waved her toward the door.
Lettie checked to see if others were within hearing range if she needed them. Plenty of people were hanging around nearby. Thinking it was safe, Lettie climbed the stairs behind Kenton. He didn’t know about the knife tucked into one of the pockets of her jeans.
Inside, she found the same kind of contrast between this clean house and others she’d been in. It wasn’t sparkling clean, but it was tidier than most.
He led her into the kitchen. “Sit down. It’ll only take me a minute to make your sandwich.” He handed her a glass of water. “Mustard? Mayo?”
“Both,” she replied primly, sitting down at a small pine table in the eating area of the room.
She sat quietly, becoming uncomfortable with the idea that he was waiting on her. She wasn’t used to such a gesture. She was usually the one waiting on others both in her foster home and at the church where she’d spent hours each week attending services and events with her foster family. Thinking of them now, a shiver raced across her shoulders like a frightened centipede. It had been her experience that supposedly outstanding members of a church weren’t always kind to those they’d taken into foster care primarily for the money.
“Ready!” said Kenton, jarring her out of thoughts of the past. He placed a plate with the sandwich in front of her and took a seat opposite her.
She lifted the sandwich to her face and inhaled the aroma of the ham. Keeping her eyes on Kenton, she bit into the bread, savoring the taste of fresh food.
He beamed at her with satisfaction when she quickly took another bite.
“Who lives here? Lettie asked.
“A friend of mine,” said Kenton. His gaze remained on her. “You don’t look eighteen.”
She swallowed, and her breath puffed out with dismay. “But I am.”
“And you’re not into drugs and all the free-love stuff everyone talks about?”
Lettie shook her head. “Not really. I tried weed a couple of times, but it wasn’t for me.” Her strict upbringing had had a greater influence on her than she’d thought.
“Good. Like I said, if you want to ride to Oregon with me, there’s a job waiting for you at the Chandler Hill Inn. We’re looking for help. It would be a lot better than walking the streets of Haight-Ashbury. Safer too.”
She narrowed her eyes at him. “And if I don’t like it?”
He shrugged. “You can leave. One of the staff recently left for L.A. That’s why my father called me to ask if I knew anyone who could come and work there. You’re my only choice.”
Lettie’s heart pounded with hope. Acting as nonchalant as she could, she said, “Sounds like something I’d like to try.”
###
The ride to Oregon was mostly quiet as an easy camaraderie continued between them. Kenton answered any questions she had about him, the inn, and the way he thought about things. Lettie was surprised to learn he hadn’t joined in a lot of the anti-war protests.
“My best friend died in ’Nam. He believed in serving our country. I want to honor him,” he said to Lettie.
“A boy in my high school was drafted. His parents weren’t happy about it.”
“Well, if I’m drafted, I’m going,” Kenton said. “I don’t want to, but I will. I don’t really have a choice.”
As they talked, they agreed that John Wayne was great in the movie True Grit.
“And I love the Beatles,” said Lettie.
“Yeah, me too. Too bad they just broke up.”
“And what about the new group, The Jackson 5?” Lettie said.
“They’re great. And I like Simon and Garfunkel and their music too.”
At one point, Lettie turned to Kenton. “Sometimes you seem so serious, like an old man. How old are you, anyway?”
He gave her a sheepish look. “Twenty-two.”
They shared a laugh, and in that moment, Lettie knew she’d found a person with whom she could be herself.
###
Lettie woke to someone shaking her shoulder. She stared into the blue-gray eyes of a stranger and stiffened.
“Lettie, we’re here,” said a male voice.
As she came fully awake, she realized Kenton was talking to her.
“Here at Chandler Hill?” she asked, rubbing the sleep from her eyes.
She looked out through the windshield of the Ford Pinto and gaped at the huge, white-clapboard house sitting on the top of a knoll like a queen overlooking her realm.
Lettie scrambled out of the car and stood gazing at the clean lines of the two-story building. Across the front, four windows offset by green shutters were lined up with identical windows below. Beneath a small, protective, curved roof, glass panels bracketed a wide front door, welcoming guests. To one side, a two-story wing had been added to the house.
Green, leafy bushes offset by an assortment of colorful flowers she didn’t recognize softened the front of the building. As she walked closer, she realized between the main house and the addition a small, stone patio and private garden had been installed.
“Come on in,” said Kenton. “There’s a beautiful view from the back porch.”
Feeling as if she were Alice in a different kind of Wonderland, Lettie entered the house. As she tiptoed behind Kenton, her gaze darted from the polished surfaces of furniture to gilt-edged mirrors to a massive floral bouquet sitting on a large dining-room table. It all seemed so grand.
Kenton led her to a wide porch lining the back of the house. Observing the rolling land before her and, in the distance, the hills crouching in deepening colors of green, Lettie’s breath caught. The sun was rising, spreading a gold topping on the hills like icing on cake.
“Nice, huh?”
Lettie smiled and answered, “I’ve never seen anything so beautiful, so peaceful.”
At the sound of footsteps behind her, she whirled around.
A tall, gray-haired man with striking features similar to Kenton’s said, “Welcome home, son.”
They shook hands, and then the older gentleman turned to her. “And who is this?”
Shy, she stared at the man who seemed so familiar to her.
Kenton nudged Lettie.
Minding her manners, Lettie held out her hand as she’d been taught. “Lettie Hawkins. I’ve come for a job.” A niggling feeling kept her eyes on him longer than necessary. When she could no longer stop herself, she blurted, “Aren’t you Rex Chandler, the movie star?”
He smiled. “Yes, I am. But I’ve changed professions.”
Lettie held back a chuckle of delight. A friend’s mother had privately adored him.
“Why don’t the two of you come into the kitchen,” said Rex. “Mrs. Morley will want to talk to Lettie, and I need to talk to you, Kenton.”
As Lettie followed the men into the kitchen, a woman hurried toward them, crying, “Kenton! Kenton! You’re home at last!”
Laughing, Kenton allowed the woman to hug him. “You’d think I’ve been gone a year, Mrs. Morley.”
“You almost were,” she said, smiling and pinching his cheek. “And look at you! More handsome than ever.”
Looking as if he couldn’t wait for her to focus her attention elsewhere, Kenton said, “Mrs. Morley, I’d like you to meet Lettie Hawkins. She’s here for a job.”
Mrs. Morley’s gaze settled on Lettie. “So, you like to work?”
“She likes to eat,” said Kenton, bringing a smile to Mrs. Morley’s full face.
“By the looks of it, Lettie, you could use more food,” said Mrs. Morley. “Let’s you and I talk about what kind of jobs you could do around here. I’m short-handed at the moment.”
Kenton and Rex left the kitchen.
Mrs. Morley waved Lettie over to a desk in a small alcove in the kitchen. After lowering her considerable bulk into a chair, Mrs. Morley faced her. Her green eyes exuded kindness as she studied Lettie. Her gray-streaked brown hair was pulled back from her face and banded together in a ponytail, giving Lettie a good look at her pleasing features.
“Have a seat, dear.”
Lettie sat in the chair indicated for her and clutched her hands. After seeing the small inn and the beautiful countryside, she desperately wanted the job.
“Where are you from, Lettie? And why in the world do you want to work here in the country? I’d think a pretty, young girl like you would want to be in a city having fun.”
Lettie paused, unsure how to answer her. She’d thought she’d like living in the city, being free to do whatever she wanted. But after four months of doing just that, the excitement had worn off. She liked to know where she was going to sleep at night and when she’d next eat.
“Maybe I’m just a country girl at heart,” she answered lamely. Her two best friends at home would scoff at her, but right now, that’s how she felt.
“Well, that’s what you’ll be if you stay on. A lot of activity is taking place around here, what with people buying up turkey farms and the like, turning them into vineyards, but it is country. I hope it always will be.” She leaned forward. “Know anything about cooking? Cleaning?”
“Yes,” said Lettie. “I used to do both in my foster home. I was the oldest of eight kids there.”
“Eight? My land, that’s a lot of kids to take in,” said Mrs. Morley.
“It’s a lot of money,” Lettie said, unable to hide her disgust. “That’s why they did it.”
“I see,” said Mrs. Morley, studying her. “So how long have you been on your own?”
“Four months,” she replied. “I was in San Francisco when I met Kenton.”
“Such a good, young man. I’ve known him for a while now,” Mrs. Morley sighed with affection. “You’re lucky he found you. Why don’t we start in housekeeping, see how it goes, and then maybe you can give me a hand in the kitchen.”
“Okay,” Lettie said, jumping to her feet. “Where should I put my things? I need to get them from the car.”
Mrs. Morley gave her an approving look. “I like your eagerness. Let me show you to your room and then I’ll give you a tour.”
The north half of the front of the house consisted of a large, paneled dining room she’d seen earlier. The long mahogany table that sat in the middle of the room held seats for twelve. A summer flower arrangement consisted of pink roses and pink hydrangeas interspersed with white daisies and sat in a cut-glass vase in the middle of the table. Along one wall, above a service counter, an open cupboard made of dark wood stored coffee mugs, extra wine goblets, and water glasses. A coffee maker and a burner holding a pot of hot water sat on the marble counter. A bowl of sugar, a pitcher of cream, and a dish of lemon slices were displayed nearby. At the other end of the counter, a large plate of homemade, chocolate-chip cookies invited guests to take one.
“How many guests do you usually have?” Lettie asked.
“We have six guest rooms, so we have as many as twelve people for the breakfast we serve. During the day, people come and go on their own, tasting wine at nearby vineyards or sightseeing. We offer a simple dinner to those not wishing to travel to restaurants at night.” A look of pride crossed Mrs. Morley’s face. “Sometimes my husband, Pat, grills out, or Rita Lopez cooks up Mexican food. Guests like these homestyle meals. In fact, we’re becoming known for them.”
Lettie’s mouth watered. It all sounded so good.
Mrs. Morley led her to a sideboard, opened its drawers, and gave her a smile. “Let’s see how well you polish silver.”
Later, after being shown how, Lettie was working on the silverware when Kenton walked into the kitchen.
“Well? Are you going to stay?” he asked.
“Yes,” Lettie said with determination. The whole time she’d been cleaning the silver she’d been able to gaze at the rolling hills outside. This, she’d decided, is where she wanted to be. It felt so right.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“I have another new author that I enjoy reading. This is my first read and I love it! The story lines involved in the telling of this young woman's life weaves a fabric of love, despair, happiness, fear and always the importance of family. […] I enjoyed the author's easy to read writing style, the variances in her characters and their realistic dialogs along with the vivid descriptions that painted pictures in my imagination of all the good, the bad and the beautiful surroundings and loving people. If you love Binchy, Pilcher, Grainger and their company, you'll love this book as much as I do.” ~ Texas
“Going Home is an exceptional start to a new series from Judith Keim. It is a sweeping saga of the life of Violet (Lettie) Hawkins from age 18 into her 60s. Alone in the world, Lettie accepts a ride to Oregon for a job she desperately needs. She immediately falls in love with the land where the inn and vineyard are located. This emotional, well written story gave me great joy as well as causing some tears. I could not put the book down until I finished! I am eagerly waiting for the second book.” ~ Bernadette Cinkoske
“What a fantastic emotional book. This book will take you on a roller coaster ride and have you needing tissues several times. Lettie ages out of the foster care system and heads to San Francisco. Her money doesn’t last as long as she hoped and when she sets down on some steps, she meets Kenton, who will change her life. I don’t want to leave any spoilers because I really hope everyone will read and review this amazing story. I will say, you will love these characters and the descriptions will have you wishing you was there.” ~ Penny L
“In this novel, Keim captures the 1970's era perfectly. It is a poignant story of a young woman coming to grips with the unfortunate hand life has given her. It is well-written and well paced. A great start to what promises to be a good series.” ~ Bette Crosby


About the Author
Judith Keim
Judith Keim was born and raised in Elmira, New York, and now makes her home in Idaho with her husband and their two dachshunds, Winston and Wally, and other members of her family.
Growing up, books were always present being read, ready to go back to the library, or about to be discovered. Information from the books was shared in general conversation, giving all in the family a wealth of knowledge and a lot of imagination. Perhaps that is why she was drawn to the idea of writing stories early on. She particularly loves to write novels about women who face unexpected challenges and meet them with strength.
A hybrid author who both has a publisher and who self-publishes, Ms. Keim writes heart-warming stories of strong women who face challenges and find love and happiness along the way. Her books are based, in part, on many of the places she's lived or visited and on the interesting people she's met, creating believable characters and realistic settings her many, loyal readers love.

Links

Books featured in this post:


Sunday, February 10, 2019

"Pathways" by Camille Peters


EXCERPT and GIVEAWAY
Pathways
(The Kingdom Chronicles Book 1)
by Camille Peters

Pathways (Kingdom Chronicles Book 1) by Camille Peters

Pathways by Camille Peters has just been released and is ON SALE for $0.99 for a limited time. This book blast and giveaway is hosted by Clean Wholesome Romance.



Description
Eileen has never been interested in love. Ever since her father’s abandonment, she’s vowed to never experience such pain again. But the enchanted forest has different ideas. When the continuously shifting pathways lead her to a mysterious stranger, Eileen finds her promise to fiercely guard her heart increasingly difficult to keep.
One night when she becomes lost in a storm, the enchanted forest’s pathways lead her to the castle, home to the kingdom’s Dark Prince, where Eileen finds herself entangled in what many consider an opportunity but which Eileen believes to be a curse: competing for the Dark Prince’s hand through a series of tests that judge one’s royal worth. Eileen is neither royal nor interested in becoming a princess. But the mysterious stranger she met in the woods has his own reasons for helping her succeed, but the cost of his assistance may be too high: that of Eileen’s heart, the one thing she’s vowed never to give.
Inspired by “The Princess and the Pea”.



Excerpt
A knock sounded on the door. I bit back a sigh, both of impatience and relief. “Come in.” 
I gasped as the door swung open, for it wasn’t Alaina who stood there but—“Aiden?” 
He beamed, his eyes lighting up as they settled on my face. Warmth seeped over me to see him again after all these weeks, and my heart performed several cartwheels as he stared at me, his expression tender. 
“Aiden!” I fell into his arms, burrowing myself against him. 
He nestled against my hair. “It’s wonderful to see you. I admit I thought it’d be much longer before our paths crossed again, and I’m pleased that’s not the case.” 
I tipped my head back to gape up at him. “Wait, what are you doing here?” 
“An excellent question; one I was about to ask you. May I come in?” 
I slowly nodded. He shut the door behind him, his eyes never once leaving my face. The shock of seeing him at the palace of all places slowly subsided and I tentatively smiled. “I can’t believe you’re here. I never thought I’d see you again.” 
He returned my smile with a lopsided one of his own and my insides fluttered. “I promised we’d see each other again. How are you?” 
I sighed. “I’m in a bit of a predicament.” 
He raised an eyebrow. “Indeed. So you’re a secret princess keen on trying to persuade the prince to marry you?” 
I pulled a face. “No, this is all some horrible misunderstanding.” 
“Is it?” He folded his arms and leaned against my bedpost. “And how did a common girl end up in such a plight?” 
I narrowed my eyes at him. A secret danced within his dark eyes, taunting me. “You don’t happen to know the answer, do you?” 
He chuckled, and the warm sound I’d fiercely missed washed over me. “I do, actually.” His smile widened. “I’ve really missed you, Eileen. I’m so glad you’re here.” 
“Why am I here?” I pressed my hands on my hips and glared at him, demanding he answer me. 
He straightened and came over until he stood directly in front of me, enveloping me in his warmth and causing the strange sensations that only came from him to fill my heart. “It so happened I witnessed your unexpected arrival last night.” 
“What are you even doing here?” 
“Isn’t it obvious? I’m a member of the court.” 
My brow furrowed. “I don’t understand. How does your being a member of the court explain why I now find myself trapped here?” 
“Because thanks to my position, it wasn’t difficult to convince the guards that you’re one of the princesses come here to woo the prince.” He winked. 
I gaped at him, my heart pounding furiously. With each beat my insides burned, my anger searing and poisonous. “You told them what?” 
He frowned. “I told the guards that you’re a princess.” 
“You mean to tell me,” I hissed through gritted teeth, “that it’s your fault I’m tangled in this dangerous mess?” 
Perplexity twisted his expression. “Mess? It’s an opportunity.” 
“An opportunity for what, exactly? To be executed?” 
He rolled his eyes. “Why so dramatic?” 
My fists tightened. “If I’m caught posing as a royal, what do you think will happen? You think the royal family will merely have a good laugh before releasing me? No, they’ll send me to the gallows.” My blood chilled. I needed to escape. I stomped to the door, but Aiden blocked my exit. 
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“This was SUCH a cute book! The characters were very well developed …The supporting characters were just as endearing … as the main characters. The descriptions of surroundings were impeccable, I could just see the environment and feel the feelings that were invoked by them. The plot was really well thought out, the ideas were super creative, and I love the general fairy tale feel … I couldn’t put it down, I just fell in love with the characters and I can’t WAIT for the next one!” ~ Emma Miller
“I ADORE the creativity in this book! The forest is so magical and has so many enchanting moments throughout the story. I loved being transported into a fairy tale theme as I read; it was a perfect escape into a sweet and charming era! I absolutely loved the direction the story went and I thoroughly enjoyed reading about the adventure Eileen stumbled upon. There are so many fun characters in the story, each with unique personalities! This is such a darling story about loyalty, romance, friendship and all with a fairytale feeling!” ~ Stephanie
“This is a delightful story of romance and adventure, centered near a magical forest that guides its travelers to discover not only its own enchantments, but also to find true love along the way. It is also a story of growth and overcoming one’s weaknesses, and of going forward despite one’s fears. Both of those things are inspirational to me, and I found myself relating to the characters and hoping for their success. An enjoyable journey to give hope to your heart!” ~ William
“I really enjoyed this story. The characters are fun and delightful and they were well developed. I liked that it was only loosely based on an existing fairy tale and branch out in interesting ways to create romance and drama. I get really bored with the same re-telling over and over and this was fresh and new.” ~ Charla

About the Author
Camille Peters
Camille Peters was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah, where she grew up surrounded by books. As a child, she spent every spare moment reading and writing her own stories on every scrap of paper she could find. Becoming an author was always more than a childhood dream; it was a certainty.
Her love of writing grew alongside her as she took local writing classes in her teens, spent a year studying Creative Writing at the English University of Northampton, and graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in English and History. She’s now blessed to be a full-time author.
When she’s not writing she’s thinking about writing, and when’s she’s not thinking about writing she’s … all right, she’s always thinking about writing, but she can also be found reading, playing board games with her family and friends, or taking long, bare-foot walks as she lives inside her imagination and brainstorms more tales.

Giveaway
Enter the blast-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $50 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash.


Links
Amazon (Kindle Unlimited)

Books featured in this post: