Friday, March 23, 2018

Teaching at the Writing Conference Today!

I had so much fun presenting at the Utah Book Marketing Symposium today! There is just something about the energy at a writing conference that is so motivating. 

I taught a class about how to write great back copy and turn browsers to buyers. I think that sometimes it can be overwhelming to authors to try and "condense" their book into compelling back copy and I hope the people in my class walked away with foundational steps of where to start and how to get it done. I had a lot of great feedback and really enjoyed myself.

So, thank you so much to everyone who came and all those who asked questions. Meeting and chatting with so many authors was definitely the best part! 

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Need a Fun Family Book? Wizard for Hire Spotlight

My husband and I love to read to our kids at bedtime and this is the perfect book for that! We are having so much fun learning more about Ozzy and Rin. Ozzy's parents have been kidnapped and he's living with a robotic raven named Clark (who steals all the scenes!) while Rin may or may not be a real wizard. There are a lot of questions still to be answered and Ozzy has a pretty important quest to go on. Our family can't wait for the adventure to really ramp up!

I'll let you know what we think when we're done, but so far, this book has been funny and clever and leaving everyone wanting to read just one more page!


You can download your copy here

Here's the back copy:

Fourteen-year-old Ozzy lives near Portland, Oregon, and is desperate for help. His scientist parents have been kidnapped after discovering a formula that enables mind control. Their work was so top secret Ozzy is afraid to go to the police, but without help, he fears he'll never find his parents. Then he stumbles across a classified ad in the local newspaper that says "Wizard for Hire. Call 555-SPEL." Ozzy has read about wizards in books like Harry Potter, but wizards couldn't actually exist today, could they? After Ozzy meets the wizard Labyrinth--aka Rin--he's even more skeptical.

Sure, Rin dresses like a wizard, but the short robe and high-top tennis shoes seem unorthodox, as does Rin's habit of writing notes on his shoes and eating breakfast for every meal. Plus, Rin doesn't even cast any magic spells, which means that the unexplained coincidences that start happening around Ozzy are just that--coincidences.

With the help of a robotic-talking raven invented by Ozzy's father, a kind and curious girl at school who decides to help Ozzy, and, of course, a self-proclaimed wizard who may or may not have a magical wand, Ozzy begins an unforgettable quest that will lead him closer to the answers he desperately seeks about his missing parents.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Book Marketing Conference! Learn to Market Your Books

If you are an author and aren't sure how to best market your books, I have a conference for you! THe Utah Book Marketing Symposium is THIS FRIDAY and they are offering classes targeted specifically to marketing your books. There are some amazing presenters and this is one conference you really shouldn't miss.

If you go, I'm teaching "Five Secrets to Great Back Cover Copy: Turning Readers From Browsers to Buyers." There will also be vendor tables and tons of people to network with. If you're there, come find me and introduce yourself!

You can check out the complete class line up here. It's open to the public. Registration required.

Monday, March 19, 2018

Book Review: The Orient Express

I love the Timeless Romance anthologies. There are always some of my favorite authors and new ones to discover and the stories are just long enough to give me my romance fix!

The new one is The Orient Express and each story takes place in Victorian times aboard what else? The Orient Express!

The first story is by Elizabeth Johns. She is a new author to me, but I'll definitely be looking for more from her! We are introduced to Kate who has lived with her father in India for most of her life, but after her father's recent death, she is traveling to England. Her father had made a betrothal contract for her to Lord Darlington, but Kate is determined to break it. She met her betrothed once when she was nine years old and he was seventeen and he seemed like an arrogant jerk, so she just wants to break the contract and run her father's business. Aboard the Orient Express, she meets an army officer who intrigues her. Unbeknownst to her, he is working for the Crown, trying to find a female spy and he suspects her! A fun story of cat and mouse, mistaken identities, and risking it all for love.

The second story is by Annette Lyon about a jaded female detective, Grace Thompson. She meets a man onboard the Orient Express who seems trustworthy and likable. Grace allows herself to trust him, only to find out he isn't who he's purported to be. Marshall Bailey is traveling incognito for good reason, but he meets a beautiful young woman who seems to see through to his very soul. Both of them are keeping secrets, but when they come out, will they be able to trust each other enough to find love?

The last one is by Nancy Campbell Allen. She's one of my favorite authors and this story did not disappoint! Emily Grant's brother has a few vices that include gambling. He wins an Egyptian artifact in a card game and gives it to her, not realizing that an organized crime ring is after it! Emily must travel to Constantinople to exchange the artifact for her now kidnapped brother. Vincent Brady, a detective who is trying to catch the ringleaders of this crime ring follows Emily and comes to her aid in getting her a seat on the Orient Express---posing as his wife! She has no choice but to agree and comes to find out her new "husband" is an honorable man that she could very well lose her heart to. A sweet tale of love.

I really enjoyed all the stories in this anthology. The plots were developed and the characters memorable which is especially nice for novellas. A great afternoon read!

This anthology will be released next week, but you can preorder your copy here

Friday, March 16, 2018

Interview With #StarStruck Author Sariah Wilson!

I was thrilled to welcome one of my favorite authors, Sariah Wilson, to book club this month! She was so gracious and brought us spice cookies, like the ones Zoe makes for Chase in the book, #Starstruck. They were delicious! She also took a minute to answer some questions that were submitted to her, like what is she reading now? Where did she get her inspiration? When is her next book coming out? If she could meet anyone, who would it be? And who is her celebrity crush?

You can see the first three answers here:

and the last two here!

And if you haven't read #Starstruck, you totally should! 

Here's the back copy:

“You’ve done better.”

With one uncharacteristically sassy tweet to her longtime celebrity crush, Zoe Miller’s life turns upside down. Ultrahot A-lister Chase Covington doesn’t just respond to Zoe’s tweet, he does the unthinkable: he messages Zoe directly. Now she must decide between walking away or meeting her crush in person.

Chase knows better than to trust anyone from the Internet, but Zoe’s saucy challenge has totally caught his interest—and her girl-next-door personality is keeping it. He’s been burned enough to know he needs to keep his heart close. But his feelings for Zoe might be a lot more than just an online flirtation. He just has to convince her…

When the press gets wind of Zoe and Chase’s secret relationship, their romance turns into tabloid headlines. Will they be able to hold on to their Hollywood love story?

Download your copy here

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Hawaii Five-O Recap & Review: The Ep Where Adam Freaks Out

This ep had a lot of odd emotion to it, but Eddie was in it and Odell, who definitely stole the show for me.

We start out with two masked people breaking into a chemical storage facility that has terrible security. Our masked duo manages to load up ten canisters of chlorine before a guard moseys through and catches them. But, he didn't bring back up and so our thieves easily knock him out and run away, barely getting the canisters on the truck and driving to safety. They take their masks off and surprise! It's Adam and Jessie. Now why would they be stealing chlorine gas? Hmmm... (Also, Adam is a really good thief with Hidecki's car and now chlorine gas. Where did he learn that sort of thing? Do they teach all the crime boss's kids to do that?)

Cut to the Blue Room of Doom where our team is gathering for a safety drill. McG has Eddie (awww), Jerry has his Doomsday Survival Pack, Tunior's on the floor, and Lou is in the suspect chair, but Danny strolls in late. Steve is annoyed and wants him to take the drill seriously, but Danny drones on about how the room won't withstand a nuclear attack anyway, and, if it does, there will be a nuclear winter and it would be worse than death to be stuck with them. Steve isn't impressed and tells him he's the opposite of a motivational speaker because, if it came down to that, they would rebuild. But, in the end, the rest of the team also wants nuke death, even Eddie. Poor Steve. (I'll rebuild with you, Commander!)

Danny and Steve go upstairs and are talking about the restaurant's books since Danny is giving Vito a per diem because he's "working." Steve points out how Vito's blown the budget on a statue, bribed an official, done things that aren't really working. Danny promises he'll be saying thanks for Vito on opening night. (Somehow I doubt that. Thankfully that's the only restaurant mention we get this ep. Whew!)

Adam is waiting for Steve in his office and shows him a newspaper headline (who buys newspapers anymore?) of the break in at IX Chemical and admits that it was him and Jessie. Hidecki has expanded his Yakuza crime arm and moved into meth production. But he chose NewbieJessie to restock the chlorine gas. (Why would he tell her to do that alone when he has a dozen men to do it? Same with the enforcer deal and having her go in alone. None of it makes sense. Well, except the whole plot point thing of having Adam be there with her. So, there's that.) Of course Adam tracked the gas to a meth house, but two canisters are missing and were sold. Adam is worried because those two canisters are enough to make a weapon to kill thousands of people. Steve doesn't look happy, but says he'll loop in governor and Adam should go fill in the team.

Next we see a bunch of arrests at the meth house while Lou and Adam look on from a vehicle. Adam's feeling guilty and worried, but Lou tells him to keep his emotions in check. (He definitely doesn't take that advice later on.) Lou and Tani get the head honcho meth guy Himoto into the Blue Room of Doom and Lou is telling him he got the affable members of the task force that will give service with a smile. Himoto doesn't want to talk, so he listens while they run down his crimes. He's pretty cocky that nothing they have will stand up in court, even with one of his crew confessing, so Lou says they'll just make sure Hidecki finds out and make him a marked man. With that threat, Himoto immediately caves and says he'll tell them where he dropped off the canisters and how it was to some haoles who looked like accountants or gym teachers.

And those four GasGuys are currently loading the stolen chlorine gas tanks, but these ones are super heavy and it takes three of them to load it. (Or, these GasGuys are wimps because even tiny Jessie could heft them!) One GasGuy drops it and the lid comes off. Gas starts to slowly leak out, but instead of helping their friend get away as quickly as possible, the other three GasGuys lock him in the truck instead. He is suffering, but they keep him in and listen to his screams. Ew. Five-O has arrived at the house and they go in with Danny at head. (Steve must still be looping the governor in I guess.) They find the van with the guy still inside but now the poor man has horrible boils, blisters, and burns all over him, but he's still alive.

The team watches the blistered guy get loaded into the ambulance and are theorizing that maybe the guy was trying to back out. Or, maybe he mishandled the tank and the other three guys leap out. (Yep, that's why they're an elite task force!) Danny is a tad worried about being exposed to the gas, but both Junior and a Hazmat lady reassure him. The team goes inside and while CSU gets prints, none are in the system. Thankfully the GasGuys left their laptop behind.

The hospital must be around the corner because Adam and Junior get there very quickly and call to say that the GasGuy is probably going to make it, but he's in a medically induced coma so they can't talk to him right now. Junior has the man's cell phone and wallet and they figure out his last call was to his wife, Denise. Lou and Tani go see her, but she doesn't know anything about what's happened. Once she listens to his last sad voice mail, she wants to go to the hospital, but they still need to question her. Turns out she has cancer and they don't have insurance. It's been hard but her husband has an online support group.

Jerry unlocks BurnedGasGuy's computer that shows internet searches for how much chlorine gas it would take to kill 200 people. So weird because it's specific and much smaller than an attack would be. Obviously they're trying to hold someone responsible for Denise's cancer. They look at buildings with similar schematics for an HVAC system like the one on the computer. There are hundreds. Adam is trying to get the doctor to bring BurnedGasGuy (whose name is Kevin) out of the medically induced coma, but the doctor is firm and says no. Adam pressures him with Junior and says that thousands could come to hospital like him. If he doesn't help, he'll have to live with that. The doctor is okay with living with that, apparently and still says no.

Oddly, it's decided that the whole thing is somehow related to the governor so they evacuate all buildings within six blocks of governor's office and use lots of police presence. Steve finally returns and comes into Danny's office. To sum up, it didn't go well with the governor, the doctor won't budge, and Adam is blaming himself. Jerry calls and says he found a subpage on Reddit, and GasGuyKevin and some others believe they are part of a cancer cluster and are talking about a class action lawsuit, using a lawyer Five-O knows. They head to a Law Library and find Odell. He gets introduced to Tani and seems impressed. He's trying to help out the little guy, but can't say much with attorney client privilege. They are all talking loudly and a woman asks them to be quiet and Tani is rude to her so Lou hustles them into the stacks for more privacy. (They're still in the library, though. I don't think the stacks is necessarily better, but oh well.) Odell tells them Kevin and his GasGuy friends wanted to sue Agrocore a company that makes GMOs and pesticides. They're convinced chemicals went into groundwater, but suing them would be like David taking on Goliath with no slingshots. A lawsuit could take years with no proof. Odell tells them that Agrocore lead counsel Marshall Friedkin (it sounds like they call him Freakin in the show, haha) threatened to countersue as long as the families went bankrupt, so they're mad at him and he might be their target. There are five corporate Agrocore offices, so Five-O is going to contact the governor's office to activate nuclear emergency drill at those offices. (I had no idea you could localize drills like that! Handy.)

The three remaining GasGuys pull up to an Agrocore office in a van. Lead GasGuy (named Doug) wants to go over the plan again, but the other two GasGuys want to bail. They don't want two hundred people going out like GasGuyKevin. GasGuyDoug (has there ever been a good guy named Doug?) wants Agrocore to pay. Don't forget what they did! The other two GasGuys are like nah bro, so GasGuyDoug goes in alone. Steve is racing to the scene with the alerts activated and Hazmat units headed to all five offices. People are slowly filing to the basement to gather in the Safety Drill Room. When Steve and Adam roll in, they can't find Freakin because, oops, he's at the corporate office downtown this week. (Dangit. I hate it when that happens.) They head over there.

Jerry calls a random lady to find out where Freakin is and lo and behold he didn't come down with everyone else since someone showed up to meet with him last minute. Steve and Adam go up to the  ninth floor, with that annoying siren going. They hear a gunshot and see GasGuyDoug running away. (He didn't even use the chlorine gas after all their efforts to research it, buy it, and get it ready to go!) Steve chases him, while Adam helps Freakin and calls for the paramedics. DidntUsetheGasGuyDoug is trapped and Steve doesn't want to shoot him so he says very nicely to put the gun down. If they're going to get justice for their families, DidntUsetheGasGuyDoug needs to stay alive. They walk out with DopeyDoug cuffed and Adam watches the lawyer loaded into the ambulance with a sad/worried/guilty look on his face.

Odell and some of the team meet in Steve's office to say that GasGuyKevin is coming out of his coma and GasGuyDoug is being arraigned. Odell is frustrated that so many regular people suffered and turned to system for help, but the deck was stacked. Steve tells them the State of Hawaii is launching a full investigation into Agrocore, so they're hopeful it will uncover the ammunition needed to get justice. Odell initiates a group hug and tells Steve his hair is a travesty. (It is. Can he grow it out now?)

Adam knocks at Jessie's door and she nervously gets her gun before she lets him in. He storms in and asks her why she didn't answer his calls and did she know what was happening today? She's worried Hidecki is watching. Adam is wrapped up in how they stopped a chemical attack today (although DidntUsetheGasGuyDoug didn't look like he tried to do anything with the tank, but okay.) Jessie had no idea and Adam asks whose side she's on. There was a gap in the surveillance tape she submitted and she admits that she was talking about something personal with Himoto. Adam guesses she's sleeping with him and tells her that's dangerous and stupid. She says it's not his business, she can handle herself, and if he doesn't like it he can get another CI. Adam leaves mad, peeling out. He's driving down the highway like a crazy person, thinking about everything that's happened with Hidecki and his "task force." He's pretty worked up and freaking out a bit, screaming in the car. It's a very strange scene and more than a little awkward, but that's the end!

So, a little twist in that there really wasn't a dirty bomb! Of course nothing turned out well for GasGuy Kevin who is scarred forever with chlorine gas burns and his wife has cancer. Oh, and Freakin was shot. But other than that, no one got hurt! For me, the highlight was Odell and Eddie.

Did you watch? What did you think?

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Book Review: Ashes on the Moor

I couldn't wait for Sarah Eden's new book, Ashes on the Moor, to come out. I am a huge fan of hers and I can't think of a book she's written that I didn't like. This one was no exception!

In Ashes on the Moor, we meet Evangeline Blake who has just lost her family. With only her sister left, she clings to her as they face an uncertain future with an aunt and uncle. But a cruel twist of fate separates them and throws Evangeline into circumstances that she's unprepared for. Forced to be the town's new schoolteacher and live in a humble home in need of a lot of care, Evangeline is lost and overwhelmed. The only person who shows her a bit of kindness is an Irishman named Dermot McCormick. He's also trying to figure out his place in the world since his heritage is looked down upon no matter what he does. But as Dermot and Evangeline build a friendship, stronger feelings flare and they must decide if love is worth fighting for.

I loved this book. It's not a light romance, but a look back in time when a woman had few choices and your birth and heritage could prevent you from having life's basic necessities. Ms. Eden has obviously done an incredible amount of research as the town of Smeatley with its Yorkshire residents comes to life, fairly jumping off the page. So many language, dress, and food details add to the amazing setting, giving the characters even more depth. Our heroine, Evangeline, will draw on all a reader's emotions as she deals with so many losses and has to keep picking herself up over and over.  I wanted her to not only get her happily-ever-after, but to stand up and make a few people accountable for what they'd done! Dermot is also a character that will stay with you after the book is finished. He's suffered and risen above it, and all the while built a foundation of love and care for others, instead of bitterness as to his lot in life. He was the perfect match for Evangeline and their romance was a sweet, slow burn, that will give you all the feels. Definitely another one for my keeper shelf!

I think the best thing about Sarah Eden's books is that they aren't just stories, they are an experience. She pulls you into another time and place and takes you on an adventure that you won't soon forget!

You can download your copy here


Here's the back copy:

The life of an impoverished schoolteacher is not one Evangeline Blake would have chosen for herself. Torn from her home and her beloved sister and sent to work in the gritty factory town of Smeatley, Evangeline must prove herself to her grandfather, a man who values self-reliance above all else, before he will grant her access to her inheritance. Raised to be a lady of refinement, she hasn't any of the skills necessary to manage on her own nor does she have the first idea how to be a teacher. But failure means never being with her sister again.

Alone and overwhelmed, she turns to the one person in town who seems to know how she feels—Dermot McCormick, an Irish brick mason who is as far from home and as out of place as she is. Despite the difference in their classes and backgrounds, Evangeline and Dermot's tentative friendship deepens and grows. Her determination and compassion slowly earn her the faith and confidence of the skeptical residents of Smeatley, who become like the family she has lost.

But when a secret from her past comes to light, Evangeline faces an impossible choice: seize the opportunity to reclaim her former life and rejoin her sister or fight for the new life she has struggled to build for herself—a life that includes Dermot.

Ashes on the Moor is the inspiring love story of one Victorian woman's courage to fight against all odds, and the man whose quiet strength gives her the confidence to keep trying.

In The Non-Fiction Corner--You Are Magnificent & A Giveaway!

In the Non-Fiction Corner With Lauren

Being enough. This is something we have all pondered on time and time again. I know that I have, and I know that I have preached to hundreds of youth that thought they weren't pretty enough, smart enough, spiritual enough, or whatever it is, thoughts that only come from Satan. However, Ganel-lyn Condie was the one smart enough to write a book on it. The premise and thoughts behind this book are really good, and you feel Condie is talking to a friend or a daughter who she cares about.

One thing I really enjoyed about this book is that the beginning of every chapter is very engaging. The titles make you want to learn more, because you start to think "Am I courageous enough? Am I faithful enough?" and then Condie reels you in with a good story or attention grabber. She also uses many current events that people can relate to. I loved when she referenced things like the eclipse or the hurricane in Texas, because those were recent enough that I remember how I was feeling during those events and I have never seen them in a book before. 

I love her scriptural examples and uplifting quotes, and she also shared stories about women who shine in the areas she was addressing. Sometimes it's hard to read these stories about women who give everything they have and have to use their counter as an ironing board because they no longer have one, never get upset and have the utmost amounts of patience, or literally give the shirts off their back. If I am not doing these things that she mentions in the book, am I really enough? There is always someone doing more than me and I can always do better, as I have seen through the several examples given. Condie told a story of when she was called to primary chorister and she felt inadequate. She said there were tears and temple visits, anxiety and an outbreak of hives. It made me wonder if a woman who speaks to thousands feels that uncomfortable with 40 children, should I be more self-conscious when I get up to do my calling? She is clearly a better speaker and more creative than me, but the amount of distress this caused her made me wonder if I should stress more like I just got asked to speak in conference.

Overall I learned that no one can convince you that you are enough. Someone can tell you you are beautiful until they are red in the face, but it doesn't matter until you believe it. At the end of all her chapters, Condie has takeaways that turn the reader to the Savior. And that's where the difference comes, when your relationship with Him tells you that you are enough in every aspect in your life, but to never stop improving. I'm glad that I read this book and that I was reminded to build up those around me, but especially myself.

You can get your copy of the book here

Don't forget to scroll all the way down and enter the giveaway!

Here's the back copy:

In a world where many women wonder if they measure up, the quest for perfection can be exhausting! For those who are overloaded and overwhelmed by feelings of inadequacy comes an authentic and powerful lifeline of reassurance by best-selling author and popular motivational speaker Ganel-Lyn Condie. Featuring lessons taught through scripture, Church leaders, and personal experience, this inspirational book highlights the eternal strength inherent in and available to every woman.

Readers will laugh, cry, and feel supported as they live their earthly missions with renewed peace and confidence. From the innate beauty of daughters of God to the gift of self-acceptance to the transcendent power of Christ’s grace, sisters in every stage of life will be inspired to live more freely and fearlessly by learning to embrace their eternal potential and realize they are already more than enough—they are magnificent.

Blog Tour Schedule:

*March 12th:

*March 14th:,,

*March 15th:,

*March 16th:

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

I've Got A Free Romance For You Today!

I just noticed that Jennifer Peel's romance, Paige's Turn, is free today and thought I'd pass the deal along!

Here's the back copy:

With the encouragement of her beloved Aunt Mitzi, plain and overlooked Paige James left her hometown of Bella Port ten years ago and never looked back. But free-spirited Aunt Mitzi had plans for Paige to stop being pushed into the background. Those plans included leaving Paige as sole heir to her fortune and owner of her bookstore, Paige’s Turn. Begrudgingly, Paige returns home to fulfill her aunt’s last wishes, no longer the girl who’d left in baggy jeans and an ill-fitting t-shirt.

Paige discovers, though, that Mitzi’s last wishes include a lot of meddling in her love life. From the grave, and with the help of some friends, Mitzi has set out to make sure Paige and Bella Port’s most eligible bachelor, Sam Kennedy, find true love together. What Mitzi didn’t foresee is the firestorm and gossip she created that paints Paige as a swindler and liar, leaving Sam to wonder about the grown woman Paige has become. It doesn’t help when Paige fires him after their first meeting. But as friendship blossoms between Paige and Sam, they find each other hard to resist.

Was Mitzi right about the two of them? Will Paige finally have her turn?
You can download your free Kindle copy here

Monday, March 12, 2018

Book Review: Prancing Around With Sleeping Beauty

I was so excited to be part of the blog tour for Stacy Juba's new book, Prancing Around With Sleeping Beauty. I had really enjoyed Fooling Around With Cinderella, and wanted to see more of Storybook Valley.

The new one starts out with a peek into Rory's life when she believes her boyfriend is proposing, but he isn't. We also get to see her job as a dance instructor and how much pressure she's under to perform. Her life is predictable, safe, and not all that fun. When she meets Kyle, however, some things start to "fall" into place---until she realizes he's the grandson of her family's arch rival. That little detail starts off a series of events that will keep you turning pages to see what Rory will choose---keeping on with the safe life she's built or taking a chance on love.

I really loved Kyle's character and how easygoing he was. He knew what he wanted out of life and he was going after his dreams. He had some really cute scenes with his niece and the animals from Duke's Animal World that were awww moments. Our heroine, Rory, (aka Aurora Rose) has a really hard time being honest with herself and managing her own life. She makes a lot of decisions that will have you shaking your head, but still hoping she'll figure it out. The romance was fun and flirty, but at times got overshadowed by the overabundance of details and secondary characters. The peripheral stories involving the secondary cast slowed down the pacing considerably and took away some of the oomph of the romance for me, but there was still enough to keep me reading and hoping for a good ending. I was really rooting for Kyle and Rory to get their happily-ever-after! And since I enjoyed the first book so much, it was great to see Dylan and Jaine again and catch up on where they're at now as well as revisit the theme park.

This is a fun afternoon read that will take you back to warm summer days of cotton candy, rides, and being with the one you love.

You can download your copy here

Here's the back copy:

This Sleeping Beauty isn’t sure she wants to wake up…

Dance instructor Rory Callahan likes to play it safe. When she meets Kyle, he’s impulsive, persistent, and her exact opposite. He’s pushing her to tango way past her comfort zone and keeping Rory on her toes more than twenty years of dance teachers ever had.

Unfortunately, he’s the grandson of her family’s archrival and she doesn’t want to disappoint them. After all, her parents imagine her as a proper princess - hence her namesake Aurora, AKA Sleeping Beauty. Complicating matters, Rory’s also dealing with a surgeon boyfriend who’s perfect for her (sort of), an obnoxious boss, and desperate dance moms. Kyle wants to change her whole life, but Rory doesn’t like the stakes. After all, princesses are the ones who get the happy endings. . .aren’t they?

Friday, March 9, 2018

Help Me Decide My New Project!

I am at a crossroads at the moment. I have two projects that I could go with, but I'm not sure which one I should work on next. What do you think?

Should I do Nate's story from the Griffin Force series?


Should I do Karissa's story from Lincoln Love Stories series?

What do you think? Help an author out, would you?

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Hawaii Five-O Recap & Review: The Ep With A LOT of Talking

The team stood around the Chatting Table or in the Blue Room of Doom and talked for most of the episode, but we did get Steve in his blue shirt, (thank you wardrobe people!) and also Steve using a jackhammer. Other than that . . .

We start out with Adam chained in the abandoned shipping container with ants of some kind all over his body. (Adam and the ANTS. Get it. Haha. #sorrynotsorry) The effect is super creepy and gross, even though it's CGI. They are biting him and he's freaking out. (I wouldn't open my mouth to scream if I were him. *shiver*)

Cut to Tani and Junior being interviewed by Miss Meach for a swank school for their "son" Noah. Tunior lays it on pretty thick about how Noah is athletic, loving, kind, compassionate, smart, artistic, and could be an ARCHITECT! Wow. But, wait, they say to Miss Meach, we thought Headmaster Waller would be here. Miss Meach is eager to dish on how poor Waller has vanished, even though she's talking to people she doesn't know. Apparently Waller had a strong personality that rubbed people wrong, but no one at the school had anything to do with his disappearance. Uh huh. We flashback to the Chatting Table where Tani isn't thrilled to be going undercover for a missing persons case. But the bumbling HPD has already talked to everyone and got nowhere, so now they need Five-O to clean it up. Steve and Danny are joking around about Tunior's chemistry, but so far it's seems pretty forced to me. Back to the interview where they show Miss Meach their obviously photoshopped pics of them and Noah, and Tani finds out that if they want to increase their chances of getting Noah in, they can come to a charity function and bid on expensive stuff. Back at the Chatting Table they're talking about getting HPD to foot the bill (since HPD can't seem to do anything else right on cases) and Grover is yapping about his college kid and some other boring stuff. (Steve stood there looking mighty fine in his blue shirt, so that saved the scene.) Junior comes in to add that Waller's financials are fine and he left all his personal effects behind. Oh, and the janitor found a 9mm casing in a vacuum bag so the school is a possible murder scene. (Did HPD search the school? Did anyone?) But since the Board of Trustees had 100 complaints about Waller, they're sending Tunior into the fundraiser to narrow down the suspect pool. (Are all the people who complained going to be there or something? That didn't make sense, but oh well.)

Back to the nonsensical restaurant storyline. Uncle Vito got contractor bids and they're way out of budget. Surprise! And though Steve put in for liquor license a month ago, they won't get one approved for a year so Vito is going to see what he can do to expedite the process. Oy. *zips lips*

And then to Adam's storyline. (When did this show go from an awesome hour of Steve and his task force to a few bits of Steve, then a restaurant and Adam's task force?)  Hidecki throws some water on Adam to wake him up because he wants to talk about the 20 million dollars that Michelle Shioma hid. Adam denies that he knows anything, but in order to get him to talk, Hidecki brought JessietheCuteCon as his enforcer to beat up Adam. (Really? A crime boss like Hidecki must have fifty guys that could put a beatdown on Adam, but he brings a random girl he just met whose vibe is more sweet than criminal?) But that's not even the end of the plot point. Instead of supervising the girl he barely knows, Hidecki politely waits outside so JessiethePlotPointEnforcer can punch Adam around for a bit before she tells him to just give Hidecki what he wants or she'll have to beat him to death. (Why not just untie Adam and the two of you take Hidecki?)

Finally JessiePlotPoint brings Hidecki in and Adam says he'll take him to the money. They put Adam in the passenger seat with Hidecki behind him and a threat that if Adam tries anything stupid, Hidecki will paint the windshield red. (Well, that's an image.) JessiePlotPoint drives them out to a forested area and Adam acts like he knows where they're going as he leads the way into the trees.

Back to the restaurant nonsense. Vito is happy that Kamekona found him a sketchy, cheap crew. He bails, though, saying he has an errand to run and Kame can supervise for him while he's gone. Of course Vito goes to the Liquor Commissioner's office and tries to bribe the guy. (Could this get any more cliche?)

Finally we're back to the "main" storyline and Tunior are at the fundraiser for the school gym. Tani and Junior are mingling, but they are terrible at it. They pretty much are going up to groups of people and saying, "Hey, you guys know anything about Headmaster Waller?" Cause that's not suspicious at all. A few people spread gossip and say Waller was dipping into gym fund, having an affair with someone on the committee, and there was an expelled student who is going to sue. Steve, Danny, and Grover are just standing around the Chatting Table doing nothing. Steve asks how it went with Vito and Danny seems surprised that Steve is upset when he says that Vito's contractor bids were fifty percent over budget. Danny has all kinds of faith that even though Steve took too long to apply for the liquor license, Vito will take care of it. (Does Danny really believe that? I just have no words for the silliness of this restaurant and the dead end it is story-wise.)

More info dumping at the Chatting Table. (So far this ep, Steve, Danny, and Grover haven't left the table!) Headmaster Waller had deleted files on his computer, but they got them back and one of them was the termination of head of admissions, Miss Meach. She was taking bribes! Oddly, that file was deleted after Waller went missing. Dun, dun, dun. Miss Meach is about to leave the fundraiser when Tani and Junior approach her and say surprise, now we get to interview you. Meach is taken to the Blue Room of Doom. (Yay! Steve can leave the table!) She's denying everything, but they have video of her going into the headmaster's office. She caves and says yeah, she deleted it, but didn't kill him. Steve isn't buying it, but gets a call, they have new evidence. Waller's car! But it was wiped down with no evidence of anything. Well, maybe Waller's body is still at the school. (I guess the bumbling HPD didn't think of that.)

The team easily finds a cement form randomly poured that is rough and an obviously rushed job. (Nobody noticed this before?) Steve gets a jackhammer (the most action he's gotten in this ep so far) and they find the body with a gun next to it that is registered to Mr. Barton, the construction guy from the fundraiser. They pick him up as he's fleeing with a duffel bag full of money. In the Blue Room of Doom, Steve and Danny tell him that his financials show he's laundering money and speculate that Waller must have found out. Barton confesses and asks after his family. They're in danger since he works for a Venezuelan drug cartel and once they find out, they'll kill his family. Cut to his wife and daughter shopping before gunfire breaks out and they're kidnapped.

Back to Adam, Hidecki, and JessiePlotPoint tramping through the forest. Hidecki takes a call that proves he's working for someone else. Adam picks a spot and he starts digging while he's whispering to JessiePlotPoint about Hidecki's call. She doesn't seem to care really. And Hidecki shows no interest in the fact that JessiePlotPoint and Adam sure whisper a lot. Hidecki's patience runs out, but Adam digs up a strong box with a gun in it. Adam explains that his father buried the gun to have leverage over a rich man who murdered his business partner. If the guy can't pay up then Adam will still owe Hidecki.

Barton drives to a meet with the cartel people to give them the money so he can get his family back. They show him the daughter and wife behind a glass window, but even after he gives them the money, they're going to kill them while he watches. Steve and team move in for a gunfight and Junior takes Kono's old sniper role and takes out the last guy. (Finally! Some action!) But it's short-lived and Barton is arrested while Mom and daughter are led away. Before they haul him off, Steve says crime lab processed the gun, but evidence shows markers that say a female pulled the trigger. Barton knew his wife did it and he's ready to go to prison for her. (Why? Was she having an affair? I guess we'll never know. I hate loose ends.)

Adam meets up with Steve who is unhappy that Adam was hurt. (Did Adam have any check-ins with Steve? Did anyone know their new "task force" head was missing? Doesn't look like it.) Steve wants to shut it down, but Adam is still all in. He feels like figuring out who Hidecki is working for is worth it, but there's some angle he's not seeing. He thought Michelle was messing with him, but now he's not so sure. There's something going on and it's all connected. *yawn*

Danny goes to the restaurant that is all torn up and Kame tells him his uncle left and didn't come back. Danny gets a collect call from police dept and Vito got picked up for bribing a public official. Danny pays his bail while Vito expounds on why the restaurant is a terrible idea, that's it's a full time back breaking grind and you don't do it as a hobby. (Or insert it into an action drama!) They put everything behind  them and have a group hug, but Vito is concentrating on the picture of the guy who shot Danny that is randomly being shown on the Chatting Table screen. Vito's seen him before because he went to his house and gave him a bid for a bathroom remodel. When the guy said he knew Jersey cops, Vito mentioned that Danny now worked in Hawaii. That's how the guy knew where to find Danny! Oops.

We end on Adam getting a call from Jessie to turn on the news. A local business magnate was found dead in home of suicide. The guy didn't have blackmail money for Hidecki, so Adam is still on the hook for 20 million. Hmm...

Not my favorite episode. For me, there was too much standing around info dumping and not enough action. Did you watch? What did you think?

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Free Romantic Suspense Book For You Today!

I'm giving away my bestselling romantic suspense, The Captive, today! If you've been waiting to add this one to your Julie Coulter Bellon book collection, now's your chance.

You can download your free copy here

Here's the back copy:

Former Navy SEAL Jake Williams is the newly appointed head of a task force assigned to rescue a kidnapped American diplomat. Their only hope is Mya Amari, the daughter of a notorious Algerian hostage negotiator, but she is full of secrets and complications-something Jake takes as a personal challenge. As they grow closer, the threat to the mission escalates and time runs out for the hostages. Can Jake unravel the web of deception to save them all without getting caught in the crossfire?

Mya Amari has been in hiding nearly her entire life to escape her father's enemies. But when her sister is kidnapped along with an American diplomat, she'll do anything to bring her home-including walking into the enemy's lair. She doesn't trust anyone, especially the too-handsome-for-his-own-good Commander Williams, but when all her careful plans explode out of control, he's the only one she can turn to with the truth about her family. Is it too little, too late?

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

My New Novella Has A Release Date!

I am so excited to announce that my new novella, A Highlander's Hidden Heart, will be released on 

*drum roll*

APRIL 24th!

I can't wait for you all to read it!

Here's the back copy:

Despite being the daughter of a duke, shy Elizabeth Barrington becomes a target for the cruel whisperings of the ton. She would rather stay at home with her sketchbook indefinitely, than go out and give them more to gossip about, but when a dashing new earl arrives, everything changes. His Scottish brogue and easy acceptance draw her in and she finds herself falling in love. Before she can act on her feelings, however, her father promises her to a man who hides his cruel behavior behind a mask of civility. With her future at stake, Elizabeth must make a choice---do her duty or choose a love that could cost her everything. 

Alec Ramsay never expected to inherit an earldom or settle in England, but he leaves behind his life in the Scottish highlands and comes to London. After meeting his new neighbor, the beautiful and soft-spoken Lady Elizabeth, Alec can’t wait to further their acquaintance. It doesn’t take long in her company, however, for Alec to see he’s in danger of losing his heart. But when long-held prejudices rear their ugly head, Alec is caught between doing what is right and his new role as an English gentleman. Has he finally found the love he’s waited his whole life for, only to lose her in the web of unfair judgments and proper English traditions?

Monday, March 5, 2018

The Other Side of Heaven & The Announcement!

Last week I had the opportunity to attend the LDS Film Festival. One of the events I was most excited about was the screening of The Other Side of Heaven. It came out in 2001 and it was one of my favorite films. (It was also one of Anne Hathaway's first feature films.)

The show is about Elder John Groberg and his mission to Tonga. There are so many funny and poignant moments in it. I'd never seen it on the big screen, though, so I was looking forward to it.

Before it started, I had the chance to chat with Elder Groberg and his wife Jean. They were so sweet! The atmosphere was so festive with leis being handed out and Polynesian dancers performing.

The director, Mitch Davis, also made a big announcement--they are filming a sequel!

It's set to come out next year and chronicles Elder Groberg's assignment as a mission president in Tonga. A lot of the original actors will be reprising their roles (not Anne Hathaway, though), but we'll get to see more of Feki and Kolipoki. I can't wait!

The best part of the evening was the Q&A after the movie. Elder Groberg and his wife told some really cute behind the scenes stories that I'd never heard before. I think the one I liked best was how Sis. Groberg didn't want the scene where she kisses John on the swing to be put in the movie. She'd told all her Laurels that she never kissed John before his mission, but there it was right on the screen! The director explained that he had to show the romance, so it was necessary. (Personally, I'm glad they left it in. It was one of my favorite moments!)

Elder Groberg also talked about the difficulties he had with his feet after the rats chewed on them and twenty-five years later, he finally went to the doctor. He was shocked to find that Elder Groberg had cancer on the bottom of his feet. In his entire medical career the doctor had never seen skin cancer on the bottom of someone's feet! Of course, Elder Groberg explained the circumstances. There were so many fun stories, I wish you all could have been there!

And if you haven't seen The Other Side of Heaven, I highly recommend it!

Friday, March 2, 2018

Meeting Gail Miller & The Courage To Be You

I was so excited to be invited to spend some time with Gail Miller. She is an amazing woman who built an incredible business empire with her husband Larry Miller, including owning the Utah Jazz. As I sat down next to her, I was so surprised at how down to earth she was. We chatted about children and parenting as if we were old friends. She graciously signed our Karl Malone jersey and shared a couple of stories about Karl that weren't well-known. Gail Miller is one of those people that just has a spirit about her that makes everything feel as if they are her best friend.

As she talked about her new book, The Courage To Be You, I was really surprised by how open she was with her struggles. Even with all her business success, she really focused on what trials she'd endured and what helped her get through them. Her writing style was a lot like her speaking style--warm, friendly, and real.

The stories she shared were personal and yet relatable. Her book is inspirational and I think a lot of women will be able to identify with her. I love to listen and read about women who are making a difference in the world and Gail Miller is definitely a woman we can all look up to.

Here's the back copy:

Gail Miller might seem as though she has it easy—now. But she has experienced challenges in nearly every aspect of her life: financial struggles, family trials, and personal loss. Through it all, she has had courage to move forward and remain grounded in her faith.

In Courage to Be You, Gail encourages readers to find their own path—with the help of the Lord. Her candid stories and personal insights about faith, hard work, grief, and many more topics are both fascinating and inspiring.

”I hope as you read about my journey,” she writes, “you will recognize a gem or two of truth that may be useful in your journey. Hopefully, you'll recognize you're not alone in a confusing and complicated world.”

Reading this book is like sitting down with a good friend and visiting about the things that matter most. It will fill you with courage and determination to be the best “you” possible.

You can preorder your copy of The Courage To Be You here

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Feeling Lucky? $250 Cash Giveaway on the Blog Today!

Luck of the Irish $250 Giveaway

March 1st to 31st

 Feeling Lucky?
Enter to win $250 in PayPal Cash or a $250 Amazon Gift Code

We've had so much fun with giveaways in February, I thought I'd do one more big one to celebrate the luckiest month of the year! Scroll down to enter and may all the luck be yours!

Sponsor List - Thanks to these awesome authors & bloggers for making this giveaway possible! 

Giveaway Details

$250 in Paypal Cash or a $250 eGift Card Ends 3/31/18 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use money sent via Paypal or gift codes via Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. This giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the authors, bloggers, and publishers on the sponsor list. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.