Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Wanted: Bird Wrangler

This morning I heard a funny noise.

A tweety, scratchy noise. And it seemed to be coming from the air hose of my portable air conditioner. Yikes!

Visions of dismantling the hose from the window without hurting the bird, or having it flying all around my apartment, and eventually managing to corral it somehow and get it outside... Yeah, those are the visions that popped into my head.

Also this quote: "Bird in room."

It's from The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, when the group from the UK arrive at the hotel and are first seeing their new home.

Douglas closes the door just after opening it, and turns to his wife. "Bird in room." Being the strong woman she is (one could use a different term, but let's not) she shoves past him and enters a room absolutely flapping with birds. Yeehaw! A bird wrangler would have come in very handy there.

Luckily, turning the unit off and pushing movie scenes from my mind worked just dandy. No more noise, and a visual check (which I was brave enough to do even without holding a broom, since the noise had stopped) revealed no bird.

This is my third year with the portable a/c, and the first time this happened. My guess is that either the force of last night's storm shoved the bird in through the small intake, or else the unsuspecting little guy or gal took refuge from the onslaught in what looked to be a nice, warm, comfy cave. A family of mourning doves resides next door, and their nest doesn't look particularly weather-tight to me.

Anyhow, in case it happens again, I'm taking resumes for a Bird Wrangler position. Just post your qualifications in the comments. You can also post what kind of bird this is, because I have no clue. I found him on Canva, and for the time being, I'm calling him Clip Art Bird.

Magdalena

Friday, April 8, 2016

Donna Fasano and TWO HEARTS IN WINTER


Two Hearts In Winter
by Donna Fasano
Series: Ocean City Boardwalk, #2
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: April 15, 2016



Loss and betrayal have caused Heather Phillips to give up on love. She’s thrown herself into running The Lonely Loon, her Bed and Breakfast located on the boardwalk of Ocean City, Maryland. The “off season” in this tourist town is usually a time of rest and reflection for her; however, DB Atwell, a famous author, arrives at The Loon for the winter to finish his long-overdue novel. Daniel, too, has faced grief, and tragedy continues to haunt him. Once Heather and Daniel meet, their lives will never be the same.

Reminiscent of Nights in Rodanthe by Nicholas Sparks and culminating in a happily-ever-after similar to the great Nora Roberts, Two Hearts in Winter is a story about learning to let go of the past, about realizing that, though hardship affects us, it need not define us, and about coming to understand and truly believe that beauty is sometimes covered in scars. The human heart has an amazing ability to forgive, to heal, and to hope, especially when touched by love.



It wasn’t Heather’s aim to embarrass the girl; she just wanted to cut through the lies to get to the truth as quickly as possible.
“Listen, hon.” Heather leaned forward. “Why don’t you tell me what this is all about?”
She smiled, but she had to admit, after speaking with the woman at Atlantic Coastal this morning, she’d felt completely stumped. Why in the world would this girl approach her like she had? Why would she lie?
“I’m tired of proofing,” Sandra finally said. “And I don’t want to be an editor. I want to be a writer. And paying writing gigs are few and far between in this business. Newspapers are shutting down. Everyone is going digital. It’s… it’s hard.”
Heather gently pried the plastic lid off her tea. She lifted the rim to her mouth and took a sip. The heady tastes hit her tongue: cardamom, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves, and the richly scented steam wafted around her face.
The answer Sandra gave was completely plausible. It seemed like a perfectly natural thing for a journalist wannabe to do… write an interesting story about The Lonely Loon and present it to the magazine’s publisher as proof of her writing skills.
Heather nodded. “I see.” She set the cup down again, pleased by the calm demeanor that she’d been able to present. As she’d driven over to the west side of town, she’d fretted about the confrontation. But it had been simple, really. Just asking for the simple truth had been the best solution.
There were still a couple of questions niggling at her, though. “But why lie?” she asked. “Why didn’t you just tell me you were going after a writing job at your magazine?”
Sandra's chin tipped up, and she unwittingly slid her palm over the silver laptop that sat on the table, her gaze zeroing in on Heather’s face. “You would have helped me get a story?”
“Of course, I would help you.” Heather smiled. “I like to see people succeed. If I can help you, I will.” You silly twit, whispered through her mind, but luckily she was able to keep the offensive moniker from slipping off her tongue. “Who wouldn’t like to help someone advance in their career?”
“Oh, wow,” Sandra gushed. “I don’t know what to say. I just… this is so nice of you.”
Heather’s smile widened. Now that the truth was sitting like an open book in front of them, they could get down to work. She could tell Sandra that her mother had been the one who had established The Lonely Loon, and she could explain where the name had come from. And how she’d taken over the business after her mother had died of breast cancer. She’d be sure to name a few of the neighboring boardwalk businesses and their owners to offer as much promotion to her friends as she could. The owners of the shops, restaurants, and hotels on the boardwalk were a tight-knit group.
Sandra reached into her satchel and pulled out an eight by ten piece of paper and slid it across the table.
“What’s this?” Heather asked.
As her eyes scanned the short, full-caps header—WRITER DB ATWELL’S DAUGHTER MISSING. Heather’s blood froze and she felt like she were sitting in a vacuum.
“This is the story I want.” The words burst from Sandra like blustery wind during a nor’easter. “I have a friend who works at the Associated Press. He sent this to me just before Christmas. It’s taken me weeks to track him down. DB Atwell, I mean. The teachers at his daughter’s school aren’t talking. His publisher isn’t talking. Even his agent blew me off.”
Heather watched Sandra’s mouth moving, she even heard the words, but the situation had taken such a bizarre turn, that she felt truly dumbfounded.
“I’ve tracked him to Ocean City, I believe,” Sandra continued. “And although I haven’t seen him, I’m pretty sure he’s hiding out at your B&B. He's the one you mentioned yesterday, isn't he? The guest who needs quiet. I want you to tell me about him. I need you to tell me everything you know. About him. And his missing daughter.”




Reviews of Book 1: Following His Heart
“The pleasure of Fasano’s style lies in the scrumptious descriptions… and her characters’ sincere, mature desire to make things work.” ~ Publishers Weekly
“Following His Heart made me go “wow”. . . I found it thought-provoking in ways I’d have never anticipated.” ~ BooksAndPals.com, 5-Stars


USA Today Bestselling Author Donna Fasano has written 35 romance and women’s fiction titles. Her books have won awards, have been translated into two dozen languages, and have sold 4 million copies worldwide.







Friday, April 1, 2016

#SweetRomance #FridayReads Guest: Shanna Hatfield

Happy Friday, everyone! Please welcome my friend Shanna Hatfield. She has lots going on!

~*~


Thank you for hosting me today, Magdalena. It's such a pleasure to be your guest!
I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to share a little about my soon-to-be released sweet historical romance - Bertie and the hoopla planned for next week!


Bertie promo 2 

 

Bertie CoverBertie, the long-awaited sixth book in the Pendleton Petticoats series, releases Thursday, April 7!

She needs an adventure  

He needs the warmth of her smile… 
 Bertie Hawkins survived a traumatic ordeal that stripped away her sunny outlook on life and left her afraid of every shadow. Terrorized and tired of reliving the past, she accepts an offer to change her situation. Although she only intends to work through the summer, the peace she finds at Nash’s Folly keeps her there every bit as much as her interest in a mysterious new ranch hand.
Desperate to escape his memories, Riley Walsh buys a run-down farm in Pendleton, Oregon. To pay for the many necessary repairs, he goes to work for his neighbor, never intending to fall in love with the effervescent girl who helps around the house.
Riley isn’t the only one enchanted with Bertie. His own crazy mule and the neighbor’s son both share his infatuation, driving him past the brink of jealousy.
A sweet romance that embraces the trials and triumphs of yesteryear, Bertie blends laugh-out-loud adventures with heartwarming moments.
Order your copy today on Amazonhttp://amzn.to/1LbOdJV



flourish thin  
Aundy Cover Aundy, Book 1 in the Pendleton Petticoats series, will be available for free Kindle downloads April 7.

Make sure you grab your copy!

 Desperate to better her situation, Aundy Thorsen agrees to leave behind her life in Chicago to fulfill a farmer’s request for a mail-order bride in Pendleton, Oregon. When a tragic accident leaves her a widow soon after becoming a wife, Aundy takes on the challenge of learning how to manage a farm, even if it means her stubborn determination to succeed upsets a few of the neighbors.

Born and raised at Nash's Folly, the family ranch, Garrett Nash loves life in the bustling community of Pendleton as the 20th century approaches. When his neighbor passes away and leaves behind a plucky widow, Garrett takes on the role of her protector and guardian. His admiration for her tenacious spirit soon turns to something more. He just needs to convince the strong-willed woman to give love another chance. 

Pendleton Petticoats Series 
If you haven't met the characters from Pendleton Petticoats, here's a brief introduction:  

Aundy (Book 1) - One stubborn mail-order bride finds the courage to carry on when she's widowed before ever truly becoming a wife, but opening her heart to love again may be more than she can bear.

 Caterina (Book 2) - Frantic to escape a man intent on marrying her, Caterina starts a new life in Pendleton, completely unprepared for the passionate feelings stirred by the town's deputy sheriff.

 Ilsa (Book 3) - Tired of relying on others to guide and protect her, Ilsa finally finds the strength and courage to take control of her life. Unfortunately, her independence drives a wedge between her and the man she's come to love.

 Marnie (Book 4) - After giving up on her dreams for a future, Marnie finds her hope rekindled by one caring, compassionate man and the orphans who need her.

 Lacy (Book 5) – Bound by tradition and responsibilities, Lacy has to choose between the ties that bind her to the past and the unexpected love that will carry her into the future.


PB Invite
Dust off your dancing shoes and choose your formal attire for the Petticoat Ball Party on Facebook April 7, 2016 from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. (Pacific Time) Giveaways and games will make for a splendid event as we celebrate the release of Bertie and cover reveals for two new historical romances! Miss Magdalena will be the featured guest author at 1 p.m. (PT), so be sure to stop by then!


Invite your friends to the party, and you could win a $25 Amazon Gift card. Go to the Petticoat Ball Party page, click on the "invite" button, invite your friends, then post how many you invited. One randomly drawn person will win! Also, ask your friends when they join the party to share that you invited them on the party wall. Each friend who mentions your name, earns you another entry in the contest! The winner will be announced prior to the start of the party April 7! http://tinyurl.com/petticoatball2


  Prizes 
To enter the drawing for a $50 Amazon gift card, autographed books, digital books, an adorable apron, a tote bag, vintage picture frame, old-fashioned candy and more, fill out this form


 PB-Author-Bio  

Shanna Hatfield 2Convinced everyone deserves a happy ending, USA Today best-selling author Shanna Hatfield is out to make it happen, one story at a time. Her sweet historical and contemporary romances combine humor and heart-pumping moments with relatable characters. When this hopeless romantic isn’t writing or indulging in rich, decadent chocolate, Shanna hangs out with her husband, lovingly known as Captain Cavedweller.
Find Shanna’s books at:
Shanna loves to hear from readers. Follow her online at: