Wednesday, June 23, 2021

#Taylor'sDeception #ParanormalRomance

 


Title: Taylor’s Destiny

Author: Christine Young

Genre: Historical Romance

Book Heat Level: 4

 

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Read first chapter

 

TAGLINE

 

Taylor Maxwell never expected she would wake up in another century. Reid Stewart never expected to find her, nearly naked, on the bow of a sailing ship.

 

BLURB: Taylor's Destiny

 

She traveled to another time and place to change destiny...

 

Enjoying a day of sailing, Taylor Maxwell never expected after a suffering a concussion she would wake up in another century. A resilient independent woman in the twenty-first century, the blond beauty is ill prepared for life in the 1800s. Her first sight of the naval captain who rescues her makes her heart stop, giving her hope for her future.

 

His life is transformed by a woman who appears from nowhere...

 

Born to a life of ease, Reid Stewart defies the dictates of those born to aristocracy and chooses a life of adventure in the navy and as a spy for the crown. When he discovers a nearly naked woman on the bow of small sailing ship, his heart warms. His love for Taylor and his need to protect her from a man who pursues her might cost him his life as well as hers.

 

 

EXCERPT: Taylor's Destiny

 

“I don’t trust myself with you. I don’t fall into anyone’s bed the first day I meet them,” she told him and knew there was a greater chance these impulsive feelings could quickly change to sex. Before she let him make love to her, she needed to know more about him and where exactly she was.

He chuckled softly. “Again your honesty amazes and intrigues me. I don’t know any other woman who would be brazen enough to imply they wanted to make love or they were even thinking about it.”

“Is it shameless here for a woman to tell a man how she is feeling?” She knew it was in any other century but her own. Even then many women did not speak of their feelings and needs. Men still assumed control.

“Americans are different,” he told her. “But since you admitted feelings for me, could I plead my case for a kiss, a chaste kiss, well maybe not too chaste.” He pushed her hair behind her ears, his hands settling gently on her face.

Unable to help herself, she moistened her lips and leaned into him at the same time. His mouth settled softly against hers. She opened for him, accepting the tantalizing warmth of his breath before feeling his tongue touch hers. In the back of her throat she moaned, accepting all he gave. One hand now resting on the small of her back, he drew her closer to him.

Her breaths came in short intervals. When he looked at her, she knew she craved more but also told herself she didn’t want him to think she gave herself to anyone or everyone who kissed her.

In his arms, she turned in a slight effort to distance herself from him and regain a tiny measure of composure. This was happening too quickly. In a rush, she found she was falling in lust with him. She’d only felt this way once before and that was with Sean. It had been incredibly hard to remain chaste with her fiancéwhen she craved intimacy.

“That was enough for one night,” she told him, running her hands along his arms, wishing her life was more stable.

“Never enough but I’ll abide by your wishes.” His hands now rested on the bare skin at her waist and she realized with the slightest invitation from her, he would explore higher, perhaps slip his large, calloused hands beneath her top.

“You told me you were in the Navy. A captain perhaps?” She needed to discover more before sex kept her from thinking rationally.

“I was, but I didn’t fight in the War of 1812.” He moved his hands a bit higher until they rested just beneath the swell of her breasts, “I was too young for a commission.”

“Did your family buy you one?” she asked, curious about the workings of the British government and trying to find out more about the time. She told herself she had to keep her mind on the questions and not where he explored.

“No, a friend of my family bought the commission with the provision I work for him once my duty to my country was done.”

“What do you do for him, this man who helped you become a captain?” She laughed, understanding he wouldn’t appreciate her question.

“If I told you I’d have to kill you.” He trailed kisses down the back of her neck in what she assumed was an attempt to distract her.

“You’re a spy.”

“I can’t answer that,” he said as his teeth slowly seduced, leaving an impression as they investigated. She shivered, succumbing to his seduction of her.

“Doesn’t matter if you deny or confirm. I’ve no interest in anything secretive.” If he were on a mission on this tiny island...well, she couldn’t imagine unless he was after a person. Perhaps she was more interested than she let on.

“Earlier you spoke of an office and a boss. Seems strange. Women work in America?”

“Whatever I told you, you wouldn’t believe me and I don’t want you to think I’m lying to you.” Nothing she told him about her work would be believable to him. She was a graphic artist who specialized in advertisements, emphasis on the internet and social media. She could tell him she drew pictures.

“Try me.” He wrapped one arm around her and leaned against the railing with his other arm.

When one door closes, another one opens. For the first time since Sean left, she felt protected and safe. More than anything she wanted to tell him what he asked but... She didn’t want to find herself committed to some insane asylum.

“You have no faith in me?”

“It’s not that...” she paused.

“What is it then?”

 

 

Website URL: http://christineyoungromancewriter.com/

 

Blog URL:  http://christineyoung-romancewriter.blogspot.com/

 

Facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/Christine-Young-350132315013316/

 

Twitter handle: https://twitter.com/achristay

 

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/christine-young-5a991c21-1f11-47a0-ada5-6c2e6b689cbe

 

 

 

LINKS

 

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B081HZ34CN

 

Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/taylors-destiny-christine-young/1134926489?ean=2940163160518

 

Apple: https://books.apple.com/us/book/taylors-destiny/id1488130401?mt=11&app=itunes

 

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/taylor-s-destiny

 

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Christine_Young_Taylor_s_Destiny?id=0jG-DwAAQBAJ

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

#TellTaleTuesday #LoveInBloom

 


Title: Love in Bloom

Author: Rosemary Indra

Email: indrascloset@msn.com

 

Genre: Romance/Fantasy/Paranormal

Excerpt Heat Level: 1

Book Heat Level: 2

 

Buy at Amazon

 

BLURB:  Love in Bloom

 

When childhood friends reunite it takes two fairies and a matchmaking daughter to help them admit their true love for each other.

 

EXCERPT: Love In Bloom

 

 

Mattie Harrison sat up in bed when two golden lights floated down beside her. The shimmering lights from her fairies caused excitement to bubble within Mattie in anticipation of their visit. For as long as she could remember, the two fairies were her constant companions. Tonight she had something important to ask them. 

Cara sat cross-legged on Mattie's pillow. Kendra adjusted her green dress several times before she too sat down. Mattie looked down at her small friends then crossed her legs in front of her mimicking the way they sat.

Every so often Kendra's wings fluttered. Mattie knew she preferred playing than sitting still but tonight Mattie needed someone to talk to. Like always, Cara listened quietly as Mattie described her day and her plans for tomorrow.

When the fairies stood, their transparent wings flapped as they started to take flight. "Can you stay a little longer?" Mattie asked quickly.

Cara gracefully bowed her head and moved closer to the little girl. "What's troubling you tonight lass?" 

A smile touched Mattie's lips at the sound of the fairy's soft voice. Cara had brown hair similar to her own. She always had suggestions and Mattie felt calm after talking to her.

They'd visit every evening when she went to bed to say goodnight. Mattie had asked her father for a nightlight not because she was afraid of the dark but so she could see the fairies easier without scaring them with the bright overhead light.

"My dad is very lonely." Mattie knew what she wanted but all of a sudden she didn't know what to say. She looked at her friends. "Can you help me find a wife for him?"

"Mattie it's bedtime. Quiet down," her father's voice carried down the hallway. "Tell your friends to go home." 

Cara tapped her index finger against her lips and looked thoughtful.

"He doesn't believe in fairies," Kendra whispered. "That might be hard. He doesn't have faith in us." 

"We haven't even started and you're already negative." Cara put her hands on her hips then glanced at Mattie, "You have to remember a non-believer doesn't like interference."

Feeling disheartened Mattie's lower lip started to tremble. She'd given this a lot of thought. After much consideration, Mattie knew she'd needed help to find a wife for her dad.

"We'll see what we can do." Kendra looked at Mattie her expression softened. "We'll help you." 

Both fairies nodded. Now she'd have assistance in her quest. Satisfied, Mattie relaxed against her pillows. 

When her father opened her bedroom door, light from the hallway flooded in casting elongated shadows across the room. The fairies instant disappearance didn't trouble Mattie. She knew as soon as her dad left the room they would return.

Her father stood beside her bed looking down at her. With dark circles under his eyes he appeared worried and concerned. He leaned down and pulled the blankets up to her chin. 

"Dad, everything will work out." Mattie kissed his cheek. "Night."

"Goodnight sweetie. No more talking. You need some sleep. We're going to see grandma tomorrow." 

After her father left the room, Mattie sat up in bed. She glanced at her friends who once again sat beside her on the pillow. Mattie raised her hands and wiggled her fingers in front of her. "Do you have any fairy dust to sprinkle on him?"

Monday, June 21, 2021

#MysteryMonday #LegacyUnderFire

 


Title: Legacy Under Fire

Author: Genie Gabriel

 

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Email: genene@genenevalleau.com

Excerpt Heat Level: 1

Book Heat Level: 1

 

Buy at Amazon:  

Buy at Barnes & Noble:  

 

BLURB: Legacy Under Fire

 

After being trapped in an arson fire that destroyed her clinic and her memory, a doctor struggles to regain her courage as well as solve the mystery of why someone would want to kill her. A different kind of heat fills her life when she falls in love with the firefighter who rescued her, but can he protect her from the man determined to snuff out her life? 

 

 

EXCERPT: Legacy Under Fire

 

As Shiloh stood watching the dancers, butterflies swooped in her belly like the rainbow of satin gowns swirling across the dance floor. 

 

"Would you like to dance?"

 

Shiloh gazed at Jeremiah, her handsome escort. No smudges on his face from smoke and ashes. No sturdy turnouts with its fabric rough against her cheek. 

 

Handsome. Serious. Sexy. 

 

Though he barely touched her fingers, the heat shimmered between them. 

 

Shiloh's breath caught in her throat. Tonight was different. He wasn't a hero doing his job. He was a man whose gaze looked into her soul.

 

And found what? 

 

Did he see the holes where her memory had been? Did he sense her fear and wonder at her doubts? 

 

"I-I can't."

 

A frown settled briefly on his brow. 

 

"I've never learned any dance steps--I just to sway to the music." Shiloh shrugged ruefully. 

 

"I can teach you."

 

Shiloh's mouth went dry. She struggled to swallow as the fantasy of Jer teaching her more than dance steps raised goosebumps across her skin.

 

"It's easy." Jeremiah turned his hand over so her palm rested against his. "Just a few simple steps in a box pattern."

 

His other hand moved to her hip, and he quietly counted the steps as they moved to the music. "One, two, three. One, two, three."

 

Mesmerized by the movement of his lips, Shiloh simply followed his lead. Until he turned and she stumbled against his feet. She jerked upright, flushed, and stammered out an apology. "I guess all my skill is in my hands--or used to be..."

 

"You can stand on my feet if you want to until you get the hang of it. Marly used to when she was a kid and Tallie was trying to 'give us some culture', as she said."

 

"That sounds nice." Wistfulness wove between Shiloh's words.

 

"Trampled feet or culture?" A dimple appeared in Jeremiah's left cheek when he smiled. 

 

Why had she not noticed that before? "Having lots of siblings must have been nice."

 

"Intrusive sometimes."

 

"Better than being alone."

 

"Were you lonely as a child?" Jeremiah continued dancing with Shiloh as they talked.

 

"I knew my parents loved me and were doing important work. But I missed being around kids my own age."

 

"Yeah, you missed out on bruises and elbows in the ribs during basketball games."

 

They laughed together.

 

"I didn't realize how lucky I was," Jer said. "Until lately."

 

"Much has happened lately," Shiloh agreed.

 

Jer swung her under his arm and she concentrated on keeping her feet moving so she didn't stumble. For the rest of the song, Shiloh focused on dancing rather than talking. As the dance ended, a cautious pride bloomed in Shiloh's chest.

 

"You're a fast learner."

 

Jer was staring at her. With something different in his eyes Shiloh hadn't noticed before. Speculation. Desire perhaps.

 

The orchestra began playing again and she melted into his arms. In this beautiful old house, time seemed to have receded to a gentler era when gentlemen and ladies put on their best manners with their fine clothes for a special night on the town. 

 

Shiloh let her eyes drift closed, wondering what making love would be like with Jeremiah. She fancied it would be much like dancing with him. A slow, tantalizing journey unlike any other she had taken. 

 

Is this what she had missed in younger years by focusing on her studies? Or was this magic reserved for a special someone? Someone she hadn't met until Jeremiah. 

 

When she opened her eyes, Jer was gazing at her. A slight smile on his lips and banked fire in his eyes. He wanted her. Yet made no move to put his desires into action. Truly a gentleman. A hero.

 

The man she had fallen in love with.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#MysteryMonday #MoonInMazatlan

 


Title: Moon in Mazatlan

Author: C. L. Kraemer

Email: clkraemer1@gmail.com

 

Genre: suspense/crime/romance

Excerpt Heat Level: 1

Book Heat Level: 4

 

Buy at: AmazonBarnes and Noble

 

TAGLINE

 

Follow Detective Corey Williams on a fugitive hunt to Mexico with a Harley riding, red-haired, tall reporter who is stealing his heart while getting the news story of the year.

 

BLURB: Moon in Mazatlan

 

Detective Corey Williams is content with his small town Virginia home. Normally,his busiest night is Saturday, but when his best friend’s ex-wife attempts to have him killed, Corey gives his promise to ensure justice is served. Meeting a red-haired, Harley riding goddess has thrown a wrench in his quiet staid life. Only one hiccup in this situation; the goddess is a reporter. When the ex-wife of his friend flees the country, the reporter makes sure she is right behind Detective Williams. He is oath bound to bring the fugitive ex-wife back for trial. What he hadn’t counted on was falling for the Harley riding reporter.

 

REVIEW:

 

Moon in Mazatlan

C. L. Kraemer

978-1-62420-223-0

 

By Jeffrey Ross 

4.5 Stars out of 5

 

This fast-paced detective story has something for everyone! Moon in Mazatlán contains international intrigue, mile-high romance, Russians fighting the Mujahedeen in the 1980’s, and a hard-working detective who learns to love again. 

Narcissistic murderess Ashlee makes a bold hospital escape after inflicting an injury upon herself while in custody. Ashlee, a bad girl to the nth degree, and her too-wiling accomplice (and cop-gone-bad) Kurt, flee to Mazatlán using a carefully crafted plan to escape justice.  They are pursued relentlessly by Detective Corey Williams and his new “partner”—a beautiful, curvy, read-headed Harley-riding newspaper reporter named Riona.

Author CL Kraemer does an excellent job of moving the story along.  The ambient temperature in this romantic drama fluctuates between steaming hot and chilling—while the main characters’ passions rise and fall like waves on a Mexican beach. Kraemer does a superb job of showing the dualities of human nature—and illuminates the treacherous gaming which so often occurs between lovers.

(I gave this 4.5 out of 5 stars only because I didn’t want the adventure to stop! Moon in Mazatlán is a classic—a great read!)

 

 

 

EXCERPT: Moon In Mazatlan

 

Corey turned to the goddess residing next to him. "Hello, I'm Corey." He'd stuck out his hand. The redhead surveyed him head to toe. She took his hand in hers and firmly shook it.

"Riona Byrne."

The husky alto reply sent shivers up his back. He opened his mouth to ask a question.

"Attention! Can I have everyone's attention?" Someone at the head table was speaking into a handheld microphone. The room quieted and Tom Manning stood up. "Hello, everyone. Most of you know me but for those who don't, I'm Tom Manning. I've been Justin's best friend since we were kids in grade school."

Everyone shouted, "Hi, Tom," then erupted into laughter.

"To continue..." Tom grinned. "It wasn't too long ago things looked pretty bleak around here. But thankfully, we've all made it through and are here today to celebrate the wedding of Justin and Diane Anderson, two people who, this time last year, were determined not to get married again. Aren't we glad they changed their minds?"

Guests whistled and clapped.

"If you'll all raise your glasses, please." Tom lifted his champagne glass to the newlyweds. "To Justin and Diane… I wish you a lifetime of happiness and whatever success you desire. May you never go to bed angry and may you always find laughter in your lives. Cheers!"

The room was filled with the sound of clinking glasses and applause. Corey turned to the enchantress he'd just met and found himself facing an empty seat. He sighed. Today is just not my day.

The call went out for all unmarried men to assemble in the center of the room. Corey struggled out of his chair to join a small group of young boys and grandfathers in the center of the reception room. The wedding garter was removed and tossed to the rowdy group. Absently, he put his hand up and choked when the garter landed in his palm. Great. Just what I need… the threat of marriage, again.

He looked to the head table to find Riona smirking at him. The unmarried women were commanded to appear on the floor, and Corey watched closely to see if the enchantress would respond. He smiled to himself. She was easy to spot standing head and shoulders taller than the other women. He easily related to her slightly bored expression. She doesn't want to spoil this for Justin and Diane any more than I do.

The center of the room began to bubble with giggles and jostling for position, except for the tall redhead who stood at the back of the group, tightly crossed arms supporting her impressive bust line. The bride turned her back to the rowdy group, and on the shouted count of three threw the bouquet over her head. The crowd rushed forward to capture the prize but it sailed over everyone's head and landed in Riona's folded arms. Corey exploded in laughter at the shocked expression on her face. A camera flash caught the moment. Straightening to her full five foot eleven inches of height, she bowed from the waist and proceeded back to the head table.

"Who the hell came up with these archaic traditions anyway?" she growled as she plopped into the chair.

"I have no clue, but I don't think they're going away anytime soon," Corey said.

"I could live without everyone giving me flak about being single," she said.

"I know what you mean. Everybody has a cousin they're sure you need to meet. Not all of us have a desire to be married," Corey said.

"Boy, have you got that right! I've done damn well without a husband so far, and it doesn't look like I'll be having too many problems in the future requiring one," Riona responded.

"Ladies and gentlemen, may I have your attention please," the DJ announced. "The bride and groom will start this dance alone. On my signal I'd like the wedding party to join them on the floor then the rest of you can come out and dance. Justin? Diane? If you please?"

The newlyweds floated to the center of the floor and began gliding when the music started. They had danced for a few minutes when the DJ asked the rest of the wedding party to join them on the floor.

"I guess that means us." Corey turned to Riona, saying hopefully, "I'll understand if you say no. I haven't danced in nearly ten years. I could do some major damage on your feet."

"No, that's fine. Let's not spoil the day for our friends. Shall we?" Riona nodded to the dance floor.

Corey rose from his chair and moved to help her. He offered his arm and, with Corey limping, they walked on to the dance floor. Tom Manning had taken Justin's daughter as his partner and was twirling her around the floor. Corey turned to Riona and froze. He stood eye to eye with the elegant beauty. Oh, Lord! I've forgotten how to do this!

Riona moved into him and, placing one hand on his shoulder, the other in his hand, began to move him around the floor.

"I can't believe I've forgotten how this is done," Corey moaned.

"Don't worry. It's like a bike. You crawl on, kick start the engine, and it will all come back to you," she smiled at him for the first time.

He caught his breath at the difference the smile made on her features. She is so gorgeous. I'd never stand a chance with her. Those dark eyes and luscious lips are so—so captivating. If I don't stop staring at her, I'll do something stupid like kiss her.

She turned her head and he noticed the dangling silver earring touching against her shoulders. "Your earrings are very beautiful—unicorns with an emerald?"

"You have a good eye for jewelry. Yes, I had the necklace," she touched her hand to her neck, "and Diane made me a gift of the earrings as thanks for helping her with the wedding."

"They're really beautiful," he said. The emerald Harley with unicorn tank, unicorn earrings with emerald eyes; I really hope I'm wrong.

"Thank you. By the way, is there a reason for the limp?" she asked.

"My feet are killing me. My best friend decided to marry on the hottest day of the year and force me to wear these wretched shoes, which don't breathe; hence, my feet are swelling. I don't have any problem when I wear my cowboy boots. Right now, I can't feel my feet. Please tell me I haven't stepped on your toes," he said.

"Nah, you haven't gotten me yet. Listen, I hope you don't mind but I've an early morning appointment and I need to get some beauty sleep. Can we continue this another time?" she asked; the low sexy tones of her voice barely audible over the music.

"Oh, sure. I've a long day tomorrow and should probably think about my own beauty sleep. Shall we?" Corey motioned for her to lead them back to their chairs.

"Finally. I can change to some comfortable clothes," she smiled and moved toward the exit door.

Man, I'm an idiot. I should have asked if she wanted to have coffee sometime. Boy, did I blow my chances. Corey grabbed the coffee container on the table and poured himself a cup. I should go home and get some rest, but I can sleep anytime. It's so great to see Justin and Diane happy. They deserve this.

He watched his friend dance with his wife. The couple stared dreamily at each other, oblivious to the crowd around them. The music stopped and a comfortable silence settled on the room. Corey watched a tall figure stride cross the empty dance floor. Clad in black leather from boots to headscarf, the figure leaned over and grabbed the microphone from the DJ.

Corey's stomach lurched.

"I need someone to give me a ride to the police station. My Harley's been stolen," the figure removed the glasses and scarf.

Corey groaned when he saw the flash of red hair. I wish my instincts hadn't been right this time.

It was Riona Byrne.

 

REVIEW:

 

Moon in Mazatlan

C. L. Kraemer

978-1-62420-223-0

 

By Greg Didaleusky 

4 Stars out of 5

 

This is a 181 page detective novel laced with romance and suspense. The antagonist, Ashlee Anderson, accused of plotting a murder scheme, coerces a police office, Kurt Lee, with sexual advances to help her avoid prison time. The protagonist, Detective Corey Williams, Who is assigned to the murder scheme case, becomes amorously drawn toward a tenacious and attractive newspaper reporter, Riona Byrne, assigned to the case. Together they share their expertise propelling them on an unexpected venture. 

C.L. Kraemer expertly intertwines the characters’ psychological complexities making the story believable for the reader. There are twist and turns enhancing the suspenseful novel. I recommend the author to readers of detective stories or readers who love suspense, intrigue with a peppering of romance. I give this novel a 4 out of 5 stars.

 

Sunday, June 20, 2021

#RomanceSunday #LeegacyOfAngels

 


Legacy of Angels

Genie Gabriel

Excerpt Heat Level: 1

Book Heat Level: 3

 

Buy at Amazon: Buy at Barnes & Noble

 

BLURB: Legacy of Angels

 

Claudia deGras was forced into prostitution by her mother at age twelve. In spite of the trauma and abuse, she dreams of a respectful life filled with joy, laughter and the love of one man. Ironically, that man is Patrick O'Shea, a priest facing demons of his own. Since seminary, he has suffered memory loss and darkness at the edges of his vision that extend into his soul. They are drawn together in a deeply emotional journey of healing that becomes a life-and-death challenge to outwit the twisted man-beast who has vowed revenge against all he thinks have wronged him.

"I'm not safe anywhere." Terror beat in Claudia deGras' heart, pulsed through her veins, shut down any rational thought. Get out of here!

 

EXCERPT: Legacy of Angels

 

She bolted toward the door, not daring to look back as the sound of heavy footsteps followed her.

 

The old brown sedan sitting in the driveway always had the keys in the ignition. Most of the time, it started without much protest.

 

Claudia flung open the door and cranked the key. The engine caught and roared as she shoved the accelerator to the floor. Two doors banged shut as the old Buick slid sideways on the gravel, then found traction on the pavement.

 

Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Patrick O'Shea on the wide bench seat beside her, his hand braced against the dashboard for balance, but his face reflected his normal serenity.

 

Could she trust him? Did she have a choice? And where was she going?

 

She eased her foot off the accelerator and settled the old sedan into a speed that wouldn't get them stopped by the police, though patrols were rare on this sparsely traveled road in Eastern Oregon. 

 

While she drove the highway in silence, the childhood memories of curses and shouting and fists landing heavy blows on her body receded, and her panicked mind calmed down. 

 

No one had harmed her today. In fact, over the last few weeks the O'Shea siblings, including Patrick, had rearranged their lives to protect her from the man-beast who stalked her. 

 

She shivered. 

 

The man-beast was the real danger.

 

"Take the next exit." Patrick's deep voice interrupted Claudia's thoughts. 

 

Patrick's wisdom and gentleness had provided a balm to Claudia's soul many times during the time she had been recovering from her physical wounds at his mother's rambling farmhouse. Today, she discovered the emotional fears were deeper than she imagined. Facing the man-beast again--even in her memory--pushed her into a panicked flight.

 

Now reason was returning and adrenaline ebbing, and Claudia floundered. Once again, Patrick's reassuring voice provided an anchor, so she followed his instructions. Down a paved road for several miles, flanked on either side by acres of rangeland turning dusty gold in the early summer heat. Then another turn onto a graveled road with no other traffic. Finally off any road entirely, bumping over the rangeland to come to a stop under a sheltering copse of trees near a lake.

 

After Claudia turned off the engine, Patrick opened the car door. "Come with me." 

 

He walked toward the lake, not looking back. 

 

Claudia watched him for long minutes. Was he simply going to leave her? 

 

The land sloped downward where Patrick now walked, making it seem like he was disappearing. When only the top of his head was still in view, panic seized Claudia once again. "Wait!" 

 

She jumped out of the car and slammed the door behind her, running to catch up with Patrick. She topped the knoll and stopped, her chest rising and falling rapidly with exertion and fright. 

 

Patrick stood looking up at her, the same serene expression on his face. Then he turned and continued walking to the water's edge. Hidden in the tall reeds was a raft that looked as if it would sink with the weight of the family of ducks swimming nearby. However, when Patrick climbed on, the craft barely dipped before stabilizing. He turned and reached out his hand in invitation. Cautious but curious, Claudia climbed aboard. 

 

Using a long pole, Patrick pushed them across the lake and under a rocky outcropping. He secured the raft to a sawed-off tree stump that served as a pier post for a make-shift dock and stepped off. "Be careful. It can be slippery." 

 

Intrigued, Claudia once again took Patrick's hand and climbed off the raft. They walked toward a sheer rock cliff topped by ruins of what could have been an ancient stone cathedral. However, as they reached the cliff, Patrick slipped through a notch in one of the rocks. Once inside, he retrieved a flashlight from a pocket in the rock wall and turned it on, revealing a narrow corridor. Claudia followed him down a winding pathway for what seemed like miles. Patrick walked without hesitation, turning down side tunnels until she felt totally disoriented. 

 

At last he stopped in front of a solid rock wall. Well, it appeared solid. Until he slid aside what must have been a doorway, revealing into a cavernous room.

 

"Where are we?" Claudia asked. 

 

Patrick turned with a half-smile. "Safe. That's what you wanted, right?"

Saturday, June 19, 2021

#SciFiFantasySaturday #SardinianSunset

 


Title: Sardinian Sunset

Author: C. L. Kraemer

Genre: Fantasy/Paranormal

Book Heat Level: 1

 

Buy at: AmazonBarnes and NobleAppleKoboGoogle Play

 

Read first chapter

 

TAGLINE

 

Olivia Francesca Porcu Martin buys a home in Ollolai, Sardinia, for one euro. As she rebuilds the home, she’s also repairing her life.

 

BLURB: Sardinian Sunset

 

What starts as a crazy idea to buy a house for less than the price of a cappuccino, becomes the journey into Olivia Francesca Porcu Martin’s ancestry. The home she purchases was in her family for generations until her grandmother fled to America.

Olivia is fleeing but not a war-torn island. She is searching for roots and will find them in a small town in the hills of Sardinia. 

 

Crossing paths with a student traveler named Destiny, opens doors Olivia felt had been closed forever. It doesn’t hurt that the licensed Contractor named Rafaele, who wins the bid to help her remodel her home, is good looking and modest. 

 

Two determined, independent Sardinian souls make Destiny’s job difficult on the best of days. But as we all know,you can’t fight Destiny.

 

 

EXCERPT: Sardinian Sunset

 

Lightning slashed across the sky and thunder drummed in Destiny’s ears. The strange vessel began to turn on its axis, swirling faster with each passing second. Destiny lost her balance. Her head hit the floor hard. She heard the crack then nothing more except roaring in her ears.

When she opened her eyes, sunshine filled the tiny cabin. She pressed her hands to her temples trying to ease the pain throbbing through her head. Slowly, she found her way to the deck.

The sky was a vivid blue with a few clouds lying close to the horizon, Reid’s ship was nowhere to be seen, although the sailboat sat in the same cove. She didn’t know how to sail a boat; didn’t have any idea how to get to land. Would Reid sail without her? Good Lord, she hoped not. She’d have to find another job, and she’d have to find another man she could trust.

A boat passed by, and she waved at it, hoping someone would rescue her. It came about and headed back her direction. Watching the craft come closer, she held her breath, praying for her safety.

“Can we help?” someone from the vessel asked as it pulled up close. “You look stranded.”

“I’m lost. Yes, stranded,” Destiny admitted, shrugging her shoulders as she tried to assess this man who seemed to be offering aid. “Can you take me somewhere close by?” While she’d made several trips with Captain Stewart, she’d never been on the land, never left the boat. She had no idea what this island had to offer.

“Where are we?”

“Sardinia. I’ll take you to Ollolai. That’s where I’m staying. You know anybody there?”

“No,” she was shaking her head and wondering what she would do to survive. “I can cook. Does anyone need a cook?”

The man chuckled. “I’ve heard another guest at the hotel mentioning her need. Climb aboard.”

 

~ * ~

 

Destiny Rose groaned. “Where the hell am I?” Her head pounded and, she surmised, she must have hit it on one of the many rocks covering the interior of this—what the hell was this anyway? She must be in a newer century than the last. Her head throbbed and she placed a hand on the back of her head, flinching at the pain. Oh, right. Boat, water, storm, floor. And a rescuer, not a pirate, assisting her to the shore. How the heck did she get from the coast to this, thing?

She could only bide her time, of which she had plenty, to discover her final destination. A jet keened overhead giving her the hope this was the 20thcentury. Well, of course it must be, you ninny. You were brought to the center of town in a motorized vehicle.I must have walked here. But why?She tested her limbs by stretching; waiting for the inevitable pain of something broken and was pleased to find her parts in good working order. She sat up and observed the three-sided structure. “Hmmm. Manger? Could have been much worse. I’ve a covered refuge, for now. This will give me time to explore where the fates have landed me.”

Cloaking herself in a cover of wariness, she peeked around the corner of the stone shed. The small out-building was placed at the back of a home two-stories in size and encompassing some area. She noted a path leading around the side. If the shed where she currently stood was a home for animals, they’d been gone for a long time. No fresh hay or presentslittered the rocky ground. She listened carefully but detected little movement in the surrounding hills. The area is not heavily peopled.

A movement caught her attention. She noted a face appear in one of the windows on the ground floor. Destiny pulled back into the shed. She stilled her pounding heartbeat, afraid the soul inside the building would hear and chase her away. Don’t be such a ninny. Subterfuge was not her strong point. Doesn’t need to be.Standing against the back wall, she was sweating profusely. Her 19thcentury clothing was hot, scratchy and, with the help of a gentle breeze, alerted her to the smell of brine and oily cooking clinging to her person. Fates be cursed, I need a bath.An abode with four walls and water close by would be deeply welcomed. There may not be creatures seeking her for a midnight dinner, but she wasn’t about to tempt the fates any more than necessary.

A motorized sound reached her ears followed by crunching fading into the distance. Hope she might explore the bigger structure blossomed. A familiar tickle spread across her scalp. This had to be her new assignment. Destiny scratched her head then stepped into the open. No sounds assaulted her ears. The person inside the structure must have left. Marks about the size of a supply wagon showed a vehicle moving toward a faint line down the hill, which must be a road.

She inched her way across the back of the house checking each point of entry. Window—no, unable to open. Second window—same result. Bloody hell, was she going to have to stay in that little…place tonight? Not the optimal choice. She sighed and pulled up tall. One more window. Pulling on the bottom of the frame resulted in movement. The squeal of swollen wood on swollen wood caused her ears to ache. In one quick movement, she pulled up, swung over the frame and landed on smooth stones.

Sliding down the sturdy wall, she blew out a breath. Allowing the span of a few minutes to pass in which she steadied her pounding heart, Destiny stood and closed the window. Pullinginthe frame didn’t seem to have the same effect. No screeching. Now to do a quick surveillance of the property. She poked her head into an area she presumed to be the sitting room. Down a long hallway to a sleeping room on the first floor complete with a bathing room. Thank goodness.

She peered around for a bucket to fill the white horse trough she thought must be for said purpose. There were some fancy knobs on one side. Her curiosity pushed her to twist them. Nothing. Well, what are they for then?There must be a well close by. Opposite the horse trough was a funny looking chair. Destiny was puzzled by this bit of furniture. It didn’t face a mirror but the trough. Why would people wish to place a chair in that spot? Bugger. There was so much catching up she needed to do before the end of the week. The sands of time were slipping through her fingers. She had the sensation this task wasn’t meant to be but a brief interlude into the life of the assigned.

She poked around some of the other rooms on the first floor. A quick jaunt up the stairs and a brief inventory of the remaining rooms, including another bathing room with the same weird set up of funny chair facing a horse trough. Why would people bring their horses up to the second floor and watch them drink? Were they that valuable?All the exploration in a house covered in decades of dust and dirt was taking its toll on Destiny. Trudging down the stairs to the first floor, she decided if she was going to stay here for the night, it might prove to her advantage to stay near the ground. Recovery would be easier with bumps and bruises as opposed to broken bones should she need to leave in a hurry. Traveling back to the kitchen, she spotted a narrow door at one end of the room. Opening the closure proved to expose storage for cleaning equipment. Thank goodness the broom appeared to be the same, whatever time this was. She grabbed the tool and determined she’d pick one of the rooms and give it a dust up.

The chamber, second opening off the hallway, was her choice for tonight’s slumber. She couldn’t recall peering inside this door. The window beckoned. She jimmied it open to allow fresh, cool air to enter and escort some of the dust motes to the exterior of the house. Using skills she’d been called upon to employ at her last location, Destiny dry-swabbed the floor with the broom. The center of the room was covered with a patterned carpet. Once she shuttled the dirt into the hall, she turned to view her chosen sleeping chamber. The sun shone on a carpet of such quality Destiny gasped. She dropped to her knees, ignoring the fine dust marking her dark britches. Gently, reverently, she reached out her hand and caressed the quality fabric. The weaving was the finest she could recall seeing—ever. Much as she hated to admit it, the finished product rivaled her own. This night she would experience the pride of Sardinia. Maybe a good night’s rest might help her come up with a plan to help this assignment—person. She really was going to have to speak to the boss about a vacation. Too many assignments in too short of a time were dulling her ability to relate to them as people.

Twinges slicing through her forehead drew a moan from the traveler. “Not now. I don’t have time for this.” The warning was a precursor to a raging headache rivaling a drunk’s hangover. It was her recompense for time travel. Bed. Sleep will chase away the demon.Destiny lay on the magnificent carpet and easily slid into a deep slumber.

 

 

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LINKS

 

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B081GBXTXZ

 

Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/sardinian-sunset-c-l-kraemer/1134900387;jsessionid=0335804E1817688603E91C35CFE85216.prodny_store02-atgap17?ean=2940163130894

 

Apple: https://books.apple.com/us/book/sardinian-sunset/id1488218715?mt=11&app=itunes

 

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/sardinian-sunset

 

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/C_L_Kraemer_Sardinian_Sunset?id=UPK9DwAAQBAJ