Sourcebook Christmas Guide Roundups

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CHRISTMAS GIFT GUIDE ROUNDUPS

‪MISTLETOE IN TEXAS (Texas Rodeo Book 5) by Kari Lynn Dell for $5.68 https://amzn.to/2EgBW7F
Gift this to: Anyone who loves all things Texas or rodeo, and fans of second chance romance
Suggested gift pairing: A cute Texas cookie cutter, or a bag of Texas Pecan coffee for a warm and authentic treat. (Because a horse won’t fit under the tree!)

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COWBOY CHRISTMAS JUBILEE (Holiday, Texas Book 2) by Dylann Crush for $4.99 https://amzn.to/2EbGoVv‬
Gift this to: The friend who loves Christmas more than any other holiday, and fans of small town cowboy romance
Suggested gift pairing: Anything Christmas related – bonus points if there are cowboy boots involved.

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ROCKY MOUNTAIN COWBOY CHRISTMAS (Rocky Mountain Cowboys Book 1) by Katie Ruggle for $5.68 https://amzn.to/2LayGMJ
Gift this to: Anyone who has ever wanted to live on a Christmas tree farm (!) or cowboy readers who like a little suspense
Suggested gift pairing: A pine-scented candle, or a favorite piece from a local artist (in honor of our folk artist heroine)

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COWBOY SEAL CHRISTMAS (Navy SEAL Cowboys Book 3) by Nicole Helm for $5.68 https://amzn.to/2LbAvJt
Gift this to: The friend whose favorite holiday movie is How the Grinch Stole Christmas, or anyone who thinks horses and heroes are a winning combination.
Suggested gift pairing: Cute notecards, a framed photo, or an invitation to a holiday celebration because Christmas is all about connecting with the people we love!

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A BILLIONAIRE WOLF FOR CHRISTMAS by Terry Spear for $5.68 https://amzn.to/2EbI0P3‬
Gift this to: The friend who has a long checklist for her perfect guy (billionaire, doctor, wolf shifter) or anyone who loves a trope mashup!
Suggested gift pairing: If you can’t find a half-naked billionaire to put a bow on, then how about an adorable book themed tote to throw a copy into.

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MY FOREVER HOME (Rescue Me Book 3) by Debbie Burns for $4.88 https://amzn.to/2Lb5rt8
Gift this to: Dog lovers, and fans of
Suggested gift pairing: A puppy! (just kidding) For the minimalist friend, give this along with making a donation to a local no-kill rescue shelter. For something that’s easier to wrap, pair this with a cozy pair of red mittens for a soft and sweet gift.

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Don’t forget gifts for you! At the holidays we always spend so much time thinking about others that it’s easy to leave ourselves out. Treat yourself this Christmas and enter to win all 6 holiday books! Then cozy up with a blanket, a hot cup of whatever you like, and get lost in a wonderful romance.

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Giveaway

5 Sets of Casablanca Christmas Books

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Spotlight, Guest Post & Giveaway: THE LORD MEETS HIS LADY by Gina Conklin

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THE LORD MEETS HIS LADY (Midnight Meetings Book 3) by Gina Conklin

Publication Date: December 5, 2017

Genre: Historical Romance

Synopsis

C7A91B6B-B5B6-44EF-BF17-8A13583F9BBBLord Marcus Bowles has stained his family’s reputation for the last time. Only after spending a scandal-free year restoring some far-flung property can this second son return in good graces. But Marcus isn’t one to abandon a lone damsel on a dark country lane.

One stolen kiss and Genevieve Turner’s handsome midnight savior disappears. Typical. No matter, Gen is finally on the way to her new post, and hopefully to finding her grandmother as well. Instead she finds her mischievous hero is her new employer. Surely a few more kisses won’t hurt…

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Excerpt

Lord Bowles set one hand on the dark-stained oak and pushed, all the while watching her with gentle determination as she rose awkwardly from the floor. Iron hinges whined a lethargic turn before the door clicked shut on honking fowl. The entry dimmed but was no less luminous for the unexpected sparks between them. Lord Bowles was a dose of good French brandy at the wrong time of day, enticing but entirely unsuitable.
“Do I make you nervous?” he asked.
His lordship missed nothing. He was like a thief-taker digging for the truth. In their two meetings, he’d shown more substance than the aimless wastrel people claimed him to be. For the first time since she left London, she missed the clamor and the crowds. This quiet between her and Lord Bowles, it denuded her.
“Nervous? A little.” Her attention flittered over him. “The part of me that finds you handsome. Too handsome for your own good.”
He blinked, his lips parting. Well-shod feet shifted and another beat of stillness passed. Did she surprise him? Good. Unease melted off her back from satisfaction of his lordship being the one off center. Served him right for coming here like this.
She wiped dough-flecked hands in her apron as though she had all the time in the world. “And since I’m being forthright, milord, I wanted some time to myself. You don’t get much of that living above The Golden Goose.”
“No, I suppose not.”
With his wind-mussed queue and rumpled brown velvet coat, Lord Bowles could be any man awaiting acceptance of a social call. He was a dangerous flirt with genuine, friendly appeal, endearing qualities that played havoc with her resolve, but she would be firm.
Her head tipped at an open doorway off the entry. “The parlor is that way, milord. I’ll fetch some coffee for you.”
She headed to the kitchen, her skin prickling across her bottom and thighs. Lord Bowles watched her. Ambling footsteps sounded in the small dining room behind her. He wasn’t going to be a docile guest.
Did his lordship think he’d found a convenient light skirt?
Crossing the kitchen, she tensed, expecting footfalls to follow her on the flagstone floor. A knee to a man’s baubles sent a clear message to overzealous men at The Golden Goose. With her employer’s friend, she’d have to use different tactics.
At the hearth, she checked the roast in the cooking hastener, but no footsteps came, nor did a hand palm her bottom. One glance at the kitchen showed Lord Bowles lounging in the doorway, one hand resting in his coat pocket. The corners of his mouth curled up as if he read women all the time and knew their secrets.
“Thought I’d wait here, save you the trip to the parlor with my coffee.”
“Because I’m of delicate constitution?” She reached for the spindle jack hanging from a rafter above the hearth.
“No, because I like watching you.”
Her cheeks warmed and her nipples poked her stays. “Lord Bowles…” she began sternly.
“I know,” he said smiling shamelessly. “I’m being inappropriate with my friend’s housekeeper. Can we agree to talk freely when we’re alone? I’ll curb myself when others are around.”
“I can’t lose this position, milord.” She started winding the spindle jack, a slow and noisy effort. Her breasts jostled and the flush spread down her neck and chest. There was no denying, it was nice being the object of his improper interest.
The Beckworth kitchen was bright with limestone walls and a cheery, yellow cabinet, not a typical haunt for the likes of Lord Bowles. He’d seek amusement elsewhere. With turnips on the table and bread rising in a bowl, his boredom with this rustic kitchen was her best weapon.
“There is a point to my visit,” he said loudly. “I come bearing an offer of help.”
“Help? With what?” she asked above the cranking cogs.
Lord Bowles stepped cautiously down into the kitchen. “I’d rather have a decent conversation with you than yell across the room.” He gestured to the long pine table near the hearth. “May I have a seat? I promise to behave. We’ll have a table between us.”
Her arm burned from working against the spindle’s tension and the heavy roast by her knees. She was about to give him a set down, but she spied that silly hole in his stocking and softened.
No flirting, milord.”
He smiled boldly. “On my honor, none. We’ll be solemn as clergymen.”
“Clergymen,” she huffed and blew a wayward wisp off her face. “A few minutes. No more.”
He crossed the kitchen and took a seat at the table. She cranked harder. The string was nearly wound around the pulley.
“What is this offer of yours?”

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Buy Links

Kindle | Amazon Paperback

Amazon Series Link

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Author Guest Post

How to Enjoy London Like a Georgian

The Georgian era was a fascinating shift from pastoral to urban living. The economic boom brought scientific advances. Much of the populace elevated themselves to a better place in life—especially the merchant class. Entertainments abounded. Life’s little luxuries were affordable. People enjoyed a diversity of products pouring into London on a regular basis.

In researching the Midnight Meetings series, I came across many surprises. You could call this list 5 things for an interesting life in London:

  1. The British Museum. Seeds for the world-renowned institution were planted in 1753 with the death of physician Hans Sloane. A naturalist with a love for all things exotic, Sloane had purchased the house next door to warehouse his unique collections. People traveled far and wide to visit the house in Bloomsbury, finding a hodgepodge of international oddities.
  2. Trustees of Sloan’s estate didn’t know what to do with Sloane’s things. They tried to give the collection King George II, but he didn’t want it. Parliament acquired the collection and by 1759 the official British Museum opened its doors to the public.
  3. Hot air balloon-mania hit England in the 1780s. It’s been reported that 200,000 people (royalty included in that number) showed up at the Artillery Ground of Moorfields to see a demonstration by Vincenzo Lunardi. He ascended without incident (other than his cat, which he took along for the ride, getting sick). The charming Italian was quite popular. Hawkers sold Lunardi fans, garters, and bonnets.
  4. Pets ranged from the regular to the exotic. Unusual pet ownership spread amongst all classes with animals like a mongoose, ring-tailed lemurs, and marmosets. The Tower of London had a zoo open to the public, featuring jackals, lions, monkeys, baboons, and even an Indian elephant. Great beasts from around the world were housed in the Tower as far back as the 13th century.
  5. Fine furniture became egalitarian with Chippendale’s innovations to the industry. In the past, fashionable homeowners clamored for furniture fashionable made by high-end designers. Those men signed each furniture piece they made the way painters sign a painting. Then along came Chippendale. He published his Gentleman and Cabinetmaker’s Director (a design book) which changed how the English bought and made furniture.

Design books weren’t new, but Chippendale’s approach was revolutionary. He presented the furniture as part of interior design: think presenting whole sets for a drawing room rather than an individual piece on a page. Chippendale hired men to make furniture for him, but his book not only changed ensemble decorating, it fostered a Do-It-Yourself approach to fine furniture-making. Humble gentry purchased Chippendale’s books and crafted their own fine furniture (such as my character, Mr. Samuel Beckworth in The Lord Meets His Lady).

The resourceful woman created her own future. The nobility watched over their daughters lest those young women go astray, but other classes of London enjoyed a kind of bare-knuckle freedom. Life was harsh on the fair-sex. Yet, many women refused to be victims of the times. Some forged a good life in commerce. Publisher Elizabeth Nutt is one such example. She ran a cluster of shops near the Royal Exchange where she sold respectable publications.  She was also listed as “Mercury Woman”, a printer of seditious and sometimes salacious material on Grubb Street. She ran the business with her daughters.

London, no matter the era, was and is a place of opportunity for those who seek adventure on its streets. ~Gina

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Giveaway

5 Copies of THE LORD MEETS HIS LADY

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

Gina Conkle writes sensual Georgian romance and lush Viking romance. Her books offer a fresh, addictive spin on the genre, with the witty banter and sexual tension that readers crave. She grew up in southern California and despite all that sunshine, Gina loves books over beaches and stone castles over sand castles. Now she lives in Michigan with her favorite alpha male, Brian, and their two sons where she’s known to occasionally garden and cook.

Website | Facebook | Twitter

Spotlight, Excerpt & Giveaway: THIRD SON’S A CHARM by Shana Galen

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THIRD SON’S A CHARM (The Survivors Book 1) by Shana Galen

Publication Date: November 7, 2017

Genre: Historical Romance

Synopsis

E5CD2001-CA5A-4E1C-A2FE-AD08D3184821Ewan Mostyn thinks a job as a duke’s daughter’s bodyguard will be easy—but Lady Lorraine has a few tricks up her sleeve that spark an undeniable passion

Fiercely loyal to his friends and comrades, Ewan Mostyn is the toughest in a group of younger sons of nobility who met as soldiers and are now trying desperately to settle back into peaceful Society. Ewan trusts his brawn more than his brains, but when he’s offered a job watching the Duke of Ridlington’s stubbornly independent daughter, he finds both are challenged.

Lady Lorraine wants none of her father’s high-handed ways, and she’ll do everything in her power to avoid her distressingly attractive bodyguard—until she lands herself in real trouble. Lorraine begins to see Ewan’s protectiveness in a new light, and she can only hope that her stoic guardian will do for her what he’s always done—fight for what he loves.

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Excerpt

Lady Lorraine manages to sneak off to meet Francis, her would-be-lover in the garden. Ewan Mostyn tracks them down and interrupts Lady Lorraine trying to convince Francis to kiss her.

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“Kiss me,” she said, looking up at Francis with adoring eyes the bastard did not deserve in the least. “I could wait forever if you would but kiss me.”
It was perhaps the silliest speech Ewan had ever heard. It was the sort of thing he expected one of Beaumont’s women to say, and yet despite the melodrama of the sentiment, at that moment Ewan hated Francis more than he ever had when his cousin had been his daily tormentor.
His loathing was so strong and so incomprehensible that Ewan regained control of his body and stepped out from behind the topiary.
Francis saw him first, and he stiffened and stepped back, putting a respectable distance between himself and Lady Lorraine. His expression was wary and, to Ewan’s satisfaction, frightened. The lady spun around as well, but her face showed no fear, only annoyance. She gave a long sigh. “Mr. Mostyn, I believe you know your cousin, Mr. Mostyn.”
“Ewan.” Francis looked him up and down. “We seem to keep meeting. Run along now. Lady Lorraine and I were having a private word.”
Ewan held out his hand to Lady Lorraine. “Come.”
“I see your vocabulary remains much the same,” Francis remarked. “As I’m certain you will use your simple grunts and growls to inform His Grace about this meeting, be sure to mention that I did nothing improper.”
“More’s the pity,” Lady Lorraine muttered. “At least the lecture and scolding would have been worth it.”
Ewan had the urge to laugh. Instead, he beckoned her with his outstretched hand. She did not take it. “I am not a dog, Mr. Mostyn. You needn’t crook your finger at me.”
Francis bowed. “I see I am no longer needed. My lady, sleep well tonight. I will see you…soon.” With what Ewan perceived was to be a meaningful look, Francis marched in the direction of Carlton House.
Since the lady seemed to have such an objection to them, Ewan folded his arms across his chest. He waited for her to speak. He felt he should say something, but he was not certain what that something should be. He had supposed Francis to be taking advantage of the lady, while it appeared she was the one intent on ruination. Francis was no paragon of honor and virtue, and Ewan would have liked little more than to beat the man to a pulp. But he could not fault his cousin for the scene he’d witnessed tonight.
“You won’t tell my father, will you?” Lady Lorraine finally broke the silence.
Ewan let out a breath of surprised air—half laugh, half incredulity.
The lady grasped his forearm. “If you do, it will not only doom me, but it will reflect badly on you as well.”
Ewan inclined his head, acknowledging the point. He’d made mistakes before, and he always took his punishment like a man. He was not much of a gentleman, but he had retained enough of his upbringing to know that one did not lie or cheat to avoid trouble. One faced the consequences of his mistakes with head held high. “Then so be it.”
She gaped at him. “You do not even care? You will be dismissed.”
Ewan blew out a breath. He did care. He cared very much, much more than he wanted to admit to.
Her hand on his forearm tightened, and he looked down at her. The damned chit was shivering with cold. Ewan was impervious to all but the coldest temperatures, but she looked almost blue. “Very well. Tell him. Nothing happened anyway.”
“Not for your lack of trying. I should tell your father you don’t need a bodyguard. You need to be locked in a convent.”
Now her eyes narrowed, and she released his arm as though it were filth she could not bear to touch any longer. “So now I am to be censured by you?”
He frowned at her. “Why not me?”
“Are you married?”
The question took him off guard. Conversation with women generally had the effect of unsettling him. He could never predict where their maze-like minds might wander. Conversation with men began at point A and ended at point B. Women often meandered to C then R and back to L before coming to the point.
“It is a simple question, Mr. Mostyn. Are you married?”
He shook his head.
“I didn’t think so. Are you a virgin?”
Ewan gaped at her. The question was so wildly inappropriate that, in his opinion, she had abandoned the points of the alphabet all together.
She waved a hand. “Yes, I know I am not supposed to ask you that, but humor me. I am making a point. Just answer yes or no.”
He shook his head as he did not trust his voice at the moment.
“Of course you are not. And yet no one thinks anything of the fact that you have bedded a woman who is not your wife. If I had to guess, with those eyes and those shoulders and chest”—she looked him up and down, and he actually felt himself heat at her frank perusal—“I imagine you have bedded more than your share of women.”
Ewan’s head was spinning at the rapidity of her speech, but what he did understand was that she had just complimented him. She admired his body, and the thought of her eyes on him caused him to have to take a breath. His chest felt tight and he lifted his hand to loosen the goddamn cravat before he remembered where he was.
“Of course,” she went on, “it is seen as perfectly natural for a man to want to kiss a woman, touch her, undress her, take her to bed, and—”
Ewan cleared his throat, not only because the already inappropriate conversation had descended beyond the pale, but because her description of the intimacies between men and women made him think of doing those things with her. And now the woman had not only fired his blood but stirred his rod. If she continued in this vein, his state of growing arousal would be evident to both of them.
“My point,” she said—and thank God she was finally reaching it—“is that it is considered natural for men to want these things, but when a woman wants them, then we should be locked away.” She gestured wildly with her hand, losing hold of her wrap so it slid to the ground and trailed after her as she paced. “What is so wrong with wanting a man to kiss me?” She gave Ewan a direct look, challenging him to give her an answer.

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Buy Links

Kindle | Amazon Paperback

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Giveaway

Shana Galen Prize Pack with Wine Charm

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

imageShana Galen is the national bestselling author of fast-paced adventurous Regency historicals, including the RT Reviewers’ Choice The Making of a Gentleman. Her books have been sold in Brazil, Russia, and the Netherlands and featured in the Rhapsody and Doubleday Book Clubs. A former English teacher in Houston’s inner city, Shana now writes full time. She is a happily married wife and mother of a daughter and a spoiled cat and lives in Houston, Texas.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Review: TO LOVE A WOLF (SWAT, #4) by Paige Tyler

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TO LOVE A WOLF (SWAT, #4) by Paige Tyler

Publication Date: June 7, 2016

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Synopsis
imageHE’S FOUND THE ONE

SWAT officer Landry Cooper is certain Everly Danu is The One. The problem is, she has no idea what Cooper really is. And as much as he wants to trust her, he’s not sure he can share his deepest secret…

When Everly’s family discovers Cooper’s a werewolf, her brothers will do anything to keep them apart—they’ll kill him if they have to. Everly is falling hard for the ridiculously handsome SWAT officer, and she’s not about to let her brothers tell her who she can love… Until Cooper’s secret is exposed and she discovers the man she thought she knew is a monster in disguise.

BUT CAN HE KEEP HER?

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Donna 5 Stars

I connected immediately with both Cooper and Everly. Their relationship was fun to watch and even though it developed quickly, it never seemed too quick. I liked that. The story swirling around them was full of danger, intrigue and mystery. Throw in family stuff and I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. The hot romance only added to my enjoyment. I loved it.

*Review copy provided NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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Excerpt

Paige Tyler releases TO LOVE A WOLF, the fourth in her high-octane SWAT series, this June. To celebrate, we’re giving you the first SIX chapters to read FOR FREE!

Download the first six chapters here.

To get you started, we’ve included the first few pages below.

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Outside Samarra City, Iraq, 2009

Staff Sergeant Landry Cooper moved carefully through the rubble covering the floor of the partially demolished building, inching his way closer to the target. The maze of shattered brick and broken pieces of wood weren’t the biggest reason he was moving slowly, though. That had more to do with the hundred-degree temperature and the seventy-five-pound Kevlar bomb suit he was wearing. He despised the army’s suit with a passion that few people outside the Explosive Ordnance Disposal community could understand.
It wasn’t simply that it was hot and heavy. No, what he hated most about the suit was the nearly complete sensory deprivation that came with wearing it. Inside the claustrophobic helmet surrounded by a neck gusset designed to keep your head from getting ripped off your body during an explosion, you couldn’t hear much of anything, your line of sight was distorted by the thick, curved face piece, and your peripheral vision was nonexistent. Having to make a manual approach—better known in EOD circles as the long walk—on a suspected improvised explosive device, or IED, was bad enough. Doing it when you had an armor-plated pillow wrapped around your head?
That sucked.
But he didn’t have a choice. Local construction workers had come in this morning and found a suspected IED half buried in the dirt between two buildings. Cooper and his team had been able to use a robot to drop a small demolition charge near the device, but his disposal charge, combined with a bang from the IED, had caused part of the surrounding buildings to collapse, pissing off the locals and making it impossible to get the robot back in to clear the area.
If there was one cardinal rule in EOD, it was that you never released an incident location back to the good guys without being one hundred percent sure all hazards had been cleared. That meant doing a manual approach in the bomb suit to make sure there weren’t any explosive materials or secondary devices around.
Cooper wasn’t too worried about walking up to the package he’d just blown in place. While the relationship between the city’s Sunni population and ruling Shiite government forces would never be described as anything other than tense, lately things had been better. IED responses were way down, and they hadn’t seen a secondary explosive device, typically planted to target police and other first responders, in months.
Still, he played everything by the book, keeping the protected front of his suit facing the spot where the IED had been, and using the building’s structure for protection as much as possible. At the same time, he kept his head on a swivel, looking for anything that seemed out of place.
“I’m about twenty feet from where we blew the IED,” he murmured over his suit’s radio to his team members waiting in the safe area three hundred yards away, and then remembered he was wasting his breath. The damn radio had stopped working about a month ago, and a replacement wasn’t due for weeks. He was on his own.
Sweat trickled down his nose as he stepped over a low wall and moved toward the crater where the IED had been. He automatically lifted a hand to wipe the sweat from his face and thumped against the plastic face piece.
“Shit, I hate this suit,” he muttered, forced to make due with wiggling his nose.
He reached the edge of the shallow crater and looked down. Two feet deep and six across, it looked like a big soup bowl. There were some rusty nails the bomb maker had added for fun, but the IED itself was long gone. Even better, his demo shot hadn’t exposed another one buried underneath.
Cooper pulled a sharpened fiberglass rod out of his pocket, then jumped into the crater. If there was anything here, the blast from the disposal shot would have uncovered it, but it didn’t hurt to check. Unfortunately, the heavy spine protector in the suit that helped keep an EOD tech’s back from being crushed if blown backward against something hard meant he had to squat down like a sumo wrestler to stick the probe into the dirt. He ignored the sweat and aggravation and made it work.
He’d moved almost all the way around the shot hole and was about to climb out to walk around the rest of the area when his probe hit something hard. He tensed, but then relaxed. He was still here, so it couldn’t be that bad. Dropping to one knee, he used his hand to slowly uncover what he’d found. When a horizontal, cylindrical pipe took shape, he assumed it was a water or sewer line.
They weren’t exactly common in structures as old as this one, but it could have been placed here to supply another building nearby. As he uncovered it, the pipe began to get smaller on one end. His gut clenched as realization dawned on him. He brushed off more dirt, revealing the nose of the 155-millimeter artillery round, as well as the metal electrical conduit extending out of it and running underground.
Fuck.
Cooper pushed himself to his feet and backpedaled toward the edge of the crater as fast as he could. An artillery round didn’t usually have a conduit sticking out the end. This one had been booby-trapped so the bomber could set it off manually whenever he wanted. The conduit was there so the IED wouldn’t cut the line if an EOD tech like him destroyed it. And with the conduit there, Cooper couldn’t cut the line either.
This device was an EOD killer put there because somebody knew a bomb tech would come down and look around before turning the site over to the local police.
His mind raced. A projectile this size carried fifteen pounds of high explosive. When it went off, even a bomb suit as good as the one he had on was unlikely to stop all the frag that came off it.
He reached the top of the crater and backed away as fast as he could. He would have been able to run faster if he turned around, but the weakest part of a bomb suit was the rear. If this thing went off when his back was to it, he’d have no chance.
Time slowed as a thousand thoughts zipped through his head. How he seriously didn’t want to die. How maybe the bomber on the other end of that firing line might have needed to go take a piss, and the 155 wouldn’t go off. How his parents and brothers were going to be crushed when they found out. How he should have gone to the prom with that cute girl in his math class back in high school. How one of the junior members on his team was going to be forced to step up and take over his job. How the new unit lieutenant was going to have to write a condolence letter on his first fucking day on the job.
Cooper pushed those thoughts away, yanking his hands inside the arms of the suit to keep them from getting ripped off in the blast as he focused his attention on moving backward as fast as he could.
Just get twenty feet away. Then you might have a chance.
He didn’t make it ten.
The blast threw him backward before his head even registered the flash of the projectile exploding. Luckily, he was so close that the wave took out the brick wall behind him before he could smash into it. But that luck ran out, and he slammed into the one behind it.
He felt a sharp stab in his back, then nothing from the middle of his chest down. The suit’s spine support had broken—and so had his back.
He hit the ground hard, tumbling like a kid’s toy until he came to a sudden stop against a pile of bricks. He felt pain—lots of it—at least from the chest up. He wasn’t sure how he was able to, but he lifted his head enough to look down, and saw long, jagged fragments from the 155 sticking out of him like he was a damn pincushion.
Cooper let his head drop to the ground and swore long and hard. He was so fucked.
A detached part of his mind noticed that pieces of the building were burning around him. That was interesting, considering how little flammable material was in the area. The flames weren’t too bad, but the smoke would probably choke him to death sooner or later. Not that he was likely to live long enough for that to happen. The frag had penetrated the bomb suit. He’d bleed out fast enough. He’d just be too numb to feel it.
Then someone was at his side, roughly prying up his face, telling him to hold on. That’s when he realized his ears weren’t working right. He could barely hear the person speaking. No shock there. The blast had blown out his eardrums.
He opened his eyes, expecting to see one of his junior teammates, and was shocked when he saw that it was Jim Wainwright, a fellow senior team leader and the best friend he’d ever had. Cooper hadn’t even known another team had arrived.
“Get the hell out of here!” Cooper shouted. Or at least he tried to. The words came out as nothing but a gurgling whisper. “Jim, you know this is stupid. There could be another device down here.”
Jim didn’t answer, but simply shoved his arms under the bomb suit, as if he thought he could pick up Cooper and carry him out of here. He didn’t bother to tell his friend how stupid that was. Besides all the frag sticking out of his body, making the task of picking him up akin to hugging a porcupine, Cooper and the bomb suit he wore weighed nearly three hundred pounds combined.
There was no way in hell Jim could pick him up.
“Go!” he ordered again. “You know I’m done anyway.”
Jim ignored him. Tears running down his face, he tried grabbing the heavy-duty rescue strap at the suit’s shoulder and dragged him across the rubble.
“Shit!” Cooper wailed in agony, white-hot fire shooting through his neck and shoulders. “Just fucking leave me alone and let me die!”
Jim disregarded that request too, grunting like a crazy man as he dragged Cooper over, around, and through the obstacles that separated them from the dilapidated building’s exit. Cooper was stunned his friend could actually move him at all. He’d heard of soldiers doing some insane shit in battle to save a buddy, but this had to be the craziest. Too bad he was already a goner. Cooper only hoped Jim would get a medal out of it. Then, at least, one good thing would come out of this day.
Cooper didn’t get much time to think about what the award write-up would sound like because the pain climbing up his neck like a wave of water drowned him until everything went black.

Download the first six chapters of To Love a Wolf here!

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Buy Links

Kindle: http://amzn.to/1WAS4o9
Apple: http://apple.co/1RxW32j
BAM: http://bit.ly/24E7M17
B&N: http://bit.ly/24E7vv9
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1PNcgkn

Amazon Series Link: SWAT (4 Book Series) http://amzn.to/1tf4Ls4

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About the author imagePaige is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of sexy romantic suspense and paranormal romance. She graduated from The University of West Florida with a degree in education in 2000, but decided to pursue a full-time career as a writer in 2004. Since then, she’s written over fifty books in several genres, including paranormal, contemporary, western, sci-fi and erotica. She loves writing about strong, sexy, alpha males and the feisty, independent women who fall for them. From verbal foreplay to sexual heat, her stories of romance, adventure, suspense, passion and true love will leave you breathlessly panting for more.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Spotlight: Review, Guest Post & Giveaway: Alpha Wolf Need Not Apply (Silver Town Wolf, #6) by Terry Spear

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Alpha Wolf Need Not Apply (Silver Town Wolf, #6) by Terry Spear

Publications  Date: May 3, 2016

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Synopsis

imageAn alpha werewolf meets his match in this sizzling paranormal romance from USA Today bestselling author Terry Spear

THERE’S A NEW WOLF PACK IN SILVER TERRITORY
Wolf shifter and park ranger Eric Silver is committed to his job policing spectacular San Isabel National Forest, and he’s hot on the scent of some mysterious wolves who are up to no good. When Eric’s investigation leads him to cross paths with forester Pepper Grayling, he’s fascinated to learn this she-wolf is her pack’s leader—strong, independent, and definitely not looking for a mate.

AND THIS TIME THE LEADER’S A SHE…
With unknown dangers on the prowl, Pepper is tempted to give in to her attraction to Eric and align her pack with his. But Pepper’s been pursued by many an alpha male out to take over her pack and gain her hard-won territory—and Eric is a born leader. How does Eric earn the trust of a she-wolf who’s been betrayed so often in the past?

~*~*~*~

Donna 5 Stars

I truly enjoyed this story about Eric and Pepper. They were both likeable alphas who weren’t bogged down in being “tough”. It was fun to see the familiar pack members and meet some new ones – I can only hope they have books of their own coming. There was constant danger but also a lightness to the story that really hit the spot with me. A fun read!

*Review copy provided by Sourcebooks in exchange for an honest review.

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Author Guest Post

A Note from Terry Spear:
 

When I was writing Alpha Wolf Need Not Apply, I went with some of my friends, who are also big-time fans of my wolf series, to stay on a wolf reserve in a cabin complete with solar lighting. Which meant we had a tiny bit of light at night, and then we were using flashlights or camp lights. Water was restricted, so we used an outhouse until it grew dark, and two of us slept on mattresses on the attic floor, the others in rooms on the first floor. We had a blast.

Every morning and night and sometimes in between, we heard the wolves howling in the reserve a short distance away. The cabin is also owned by the wolf reserve and all the land around it. But what made the trip extra special was when Rory, one of the wolf handlers, brought two of the wolves, ambassador wolves, to meet with us up at the cabin.

If you’ve been around dogs, that’s what they’re like—sniffing to learn more about you. Checking you out to see if you’re female or male. You have to wait to let them accept you before you can make contact. Zoerro was the gray timber wolf, male, alpha. He’s been in promotional advertising for Game of Thrones. How cool is that to pet the wolf who was in the ads? He allowed me to pet him and stood by me for some time while I asked Rory about their behavior. He raised him from a pup, but said how wrong it was to raise wild animals like that, and he now educates people on not doing so.

imageThe other wolf was an Arctic wolf, Sabine, and sadly she has passed away. She and Zoerro were fast friends, and the staff has no clue why she had suddenly become sick and died. But she was so sweet. She tried to give me a kiss. I wasn’t quite ready for that! Rory told me she loved to be petted from behind on her legs underneath her. I sure hoped he knew what he was talking about as I reached between her legs and petted her!

Like dogs, they have their own likes and dislikes, and that was hers.

As an alpha wolf, Zoerro had to scent mark. He claimed the tire on my Escort, and after we went driving all over a Native American reservation seeing ruins that dated back to 1100 AD, we returned and Zoerro came back to see us. He smelled the tire, satisfied it was still his, and re-scent marked it.

But that wasn’t all he scent marked. We had filled a water dish for him on the patio. After he drank from it, he lifted his leg and peed in it, not missing a drop. We all laughed and said if only husbands could be that accurate!

The morning before we packed up and left, we all went down to the compound in the car, parked before the sun began to rise and readied ourselves to record the howling. With a picture of the sunrise, I recorded the wolves, wolf dogs, dogs, and New Guinea singing dogs all adding to the chorus. It was a thrill of a lifetime. And perfect for writing about those sexy alpha wolves.

 
What would you do if you had a chance to pet a wolf?
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Excerpt

Pepper Grayling couldn’t believe it when she heard two wolves fighting in the woods. She’d caught a glimpse of both male wolves, the snarling, big tan and gray that bit at Waldron Mason, and Waldron himself, a beige wolf with a white front and a smattering of gray hairs. The mystery wolf had snapped at Waldron before he raced off. The way he didn’t tuck tail meant he wasn’t cowed by the aggressor. And that had intrigued her.
She was furious that Waldron was pulling her away from her own pack to deal with him when she wanted to ensure Susan was properly cared for. As quickly as she was able, she stripped off her clothes, shifted, and ran like the devil to chase Waldron down. Whoever the other wolf had been, he had posed no threat to them. When she ran after the two wolves, she smelled their scents. The mystery wolf was indeed Eric Silver. No way would she want Waldron to hurt Eric after he’d helped Susan!
She was so angry, she could have killed Waldron for his unwarranted actions.
When she spied Waldron still chasing after Eric, she tore into him, growling and snapping to let him know just how angry he’d made her. He whipped around as if to attack, then recognized her and realized that by attacking, he’d lose any chance of courting and mating her—not that he had any—so he backed off. From his narrow-eyed, harsh gaze, she could tell he was irritated to the max with her. If he could have, he would have continued to hunt the other wolf down and finished him off. She worried about Eric—she smelled his blood on Waldron. How badly had Waldron hurt him?
But she knew Eric had been injured even before this because she’d smelled both an antiseptic and blood on him when she first met him.
She listened but didn’t hear any sign of Eric. Growling at Waldron again, she turned and ran off. She continued to pay attention to the sounds around her, making sure he wasn’t following her back to their campsite. She didn’t want to have to say a word to him about any of this when she reached camp. All she wanted to do was see that her cousin Susan was taken care of.
When she didn’t hear Waldron following her, she wondered if he had gone back after Eric.
As for Eric, she already had trouble with one alpha male wanting to court her. She sure didn’t need a second one bugging her, if Eric had any such notion. Still, she felt bad that Waldron had attacked him, and she really hoped he wasn’t hurt too seriously.

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Buy Links

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1rKSqM8
Apple: http://apple.co/1S4AocM
BAM: http://bit.ly/1Vrkgrn
B&N: http://bit.ly/1N5jNEr
Chapters: http://bit.ly/23bEoQL
Indiebound: http://bit.ly/23bEuI7
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1TwZsP6

Visit Amazon.com’s Terry Spear Page: http://amzn.to/23X45TE

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Giveaway

Enter to win a Complete Set of Terry Spear’s Silver Town Wolf Series

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

imageUSA Today bestselling author Terry Spear has written over fifty paranormal and medieval Highland historical romances. In 2008 Heart of the Wolf was named a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. A retired officer of the U.S. Army Reserves, Terry also creates award-winning teddy bears that have found homes all over the world and is raising two Havanese puppies. She lives in Crawford, Texas.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Spotlight Tour: Review, Guest Post & Giveaway: Flash of Fire (Firehawks Series) by M.L. Buchman

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Flash of Fire (Firehawks) by M.L. Buchman

Publication Date: May 3, 2016

Genre: Romantic Suspense

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imageFourth in M.L. Buchman’s critically acclaimed Firehawks romantic suspense series

When former Army National Guard helicopter pilot Robin Harrow joins Mount Hood Aviation, she expects to fight fires for only one season. Instead, she finds herself getting deeply entrenched with one of the most elite firefighting teams in the world. And that’s before they send her on a mission that’s seriously top secret, with a flight partner who’s seriously hot.

Mickey Hamilton loves flying, firefighting, and women, in that order. But when Robin Harrow roars across his radar, his priorities go out the window. On a critical mission deep in enemy territory, their past burns away and they must face each other. Their one shot at a future demands that they first survive the present—together.

~*~*~*~

Author Guest Post

Dear Reader,

Welcome to the latest in my Firehawks world.

Flash of Fire posed an interesting challenge for me right from the first page. There is a balance in building a romance world: I want it to be big enough to be interesting and small enough to be cozy.

In Pure Heat, Full Blaze, and Hot Point I had focused on the fliers of the three big Firehawk helicopters. But I didn’t want my little Mount Hood Aviation heli-aviation wildland firefighting group to get much bigger. Another consideration was that the series name is Firehawks and I wanted to honor that with another story using a pilot of one of the converted Black Hawk helicopters.

The challenge was that I already had married couples in each of the three pilot seats: Emily Beale, Jeannie Clark, and Vern Taylor.

And then I remembered a little scene in the Night Stalkers Bring On the Dusk.

Emily hadn’t eaten breakfast and only picked at her lunch complaining of a queasy stomach from the flight.

“Either that or you’re about to have another kid,” Claudia teased her.

Emily looked down at her perfectly flat stomach and then began swearing. “I’m going to kill Mark. I’m just going to kill him.”

“You don’t want another kid?” Claudia didn’t know whether to laugh or be shocked.

“The man is so insatiable, not that I’m complaining. We ran out of protection and figured one time without wasn’t going to…”

She sighed and then rubbed her belly gently. “It’ll be alright.” She told her midriff. “You just won’t have a father.”

The goofy smile that bloomed on the woman’s face did something to Claudia.

Well, crap! I’d made poor Emily pregnant back in March, a year ago. So apologies for the 15-month pregnancy (no wonder she’s so pissed off by the time she’s too pregnant to fly in Flash of Fire).

With her seat now open, I needed someone who could fill it. Fill Emily Beale’s seat? Who was I kidding? She was the most kickass heroine I’d ever written. Well, I wasn’t the only one feeling daunted, the poor character I put in her place was plenty overwhelmed as well.

But then Robin Harrow never met a challenge she couldn’t face down…at least not until she met Mickey Hamilton, the pilot of a smaller Bell Twin-212. Which also solved my initial problem of transitioning from the big Firehawks to the smaller birds in the fleet.

I always love it when the characters take the story right out of my hands and run with it and Flash of Fire was certainly one of those.

Hope you enjoy the flight,
M. L. “Matt” Buchman

~*~*~*~

Donna review 4.5 stars

I liked Robin from the start. She was talented and badass but you could still relate to her. I especially loved her realistic reactions to being the new girl in the group. The author writes all the characters and how they interact in a fun way that makes you believe they have faced the ongoing dangers of firefighting together for a long time. There is a lot of technical information about fighting fires and the aircraft used but it did not detract from the lovely romance. Mickey is every girls dream, not only in sexiness but in how he lets Robin be Robin. This is another exciting installment in the Firehawks series and I loved it.

*Review copy provided by Sourcebooks in exchange for an honest review. 

~*~*~*~

Excerpt

Best buddies Mickey and Gordon have been jostling for attention from Vanessa, one of the other helicopter pilots. Gordon and Vanessa are assigned off to one fire, Mickey and the new pilot to another. They’re standing on the airfield about to part ways.

Mickey almost left Gordon to his own devices, but he’d be bound to screw it up. Just as he was duty bound to try to cut his friend off from any attractive woman, he also had to help him if he could.
“Gordon?”
“What?” his friend still looked a little overwhelmed.
“With Vanessa, just be yourself. Don’t gum it up with trying to be charming; it doesn’t work for you.”
“Sure it does,” he protested. “I’m a charming kind of guy.” He shot Mickey a grin.
Then he looked more carefully at Mickey’s expression and sighed. Mickey didn’t have to say a word.
“Okay, maybe not so much with the charm. Thanks, Mick,” and he turned for his helo.
Mickey caught his sleeve before he could move off, “Her name?” he nodded back over his shoulder toward the newbie.
“Robin something.”
“Like the bird?”
“Like,” that smooth female voice sounded from close behind him, “Robin Hood who will put an arrow in your ass if you say Robin Red Breast.”
Mickey turned to face her. He decided that all of his first judgments at a distance were accurate, and at this close range they were ten times more powerful—both the fine looks and the serious dose of attitude.
“Hi! Mickey Hamilton,” he held out a hand. “As long as it’s not a Firehawk you’re trying to ram up my ass, I’m fine.”
That earned a half smile; nice on the lips, not touching those crystalline pure blue eyes. Her hand was fine-fingered yet strong, like she did a lot of lifting with it. A lot. She glanced over his shoulder.
“He’s Gordon Finchley,” Mickey filled in before Gordon could speak and get a foot in the door. Helping him with Vanessa was one thing; easing his access to this pretty unknown was not going to happen. “Yeah, Finch just like a little Tweety bird. Don’t pay him any mind.”
“Hi, Gordon. Good luck in Leavenworth,” she leaned around Mickey and reached out a hand, which Gordon shook as he mumbled something unintelligible. Or perhaps it was intelligible and Mickey just couldn’t hear it.
He was struck by several things at once. It was the first time he’d actually seen Robin move, and both of his first guesses of ballerina and workout diva were equally justified. Her simple move was both lithe and powerful. Martial arts student perhaps. If so, it was a different form than his Taekwondo, something with more grace and flexibility.
Also, her lean toward Gordon had placed her so close that he could smell her. Her Nomex flightsuit was brand new and the woman wearing it smelled of clean soap and…cool ice—that impossible clarity of air when snow skiing. As if—newborn was the wrong image—newly wrought.
# # #
Gordon actually wasn’t fluttery like a Tweety bird, but he was also clearly a sweet man—a major mark against him in Robin’s book.
She knew from past experience that she tended to scare the shit out of men like him. They wanted her, but she would run over them roughshod, even on the rare occasions when she was trying not to.
This Mickey on the other hand, she had been able to feel him watching her from the moment she’d hit the line. He hadn’t shifted away as she reached past him to greet Gordon, letting her lean right into his personal space.
Guys named Mickey were supposed to look like hoodlums or something. Instead Mickey Hamilton looked like a cop…or a firefighter. The trustworthy kind, not the sneaky shit she’d always pictured slipping from her mother’s bed in the dark of the night and never coming back.
Up close she could appreciate how nicely broad his shoulders were. And he had the kind of blue eyes that could see through any fog or other BS—far away the best feature on a very handsome face. He was an inch taller than she was but looked bigger and more solid than his taller finch-friend.
Robin knew that—because her heritage was half firefighter and half truck-stop mama—she was a pushover for Mickey’s type. Now she had to ask if she wanted to be a pushover this time, or not.
She rocked back onto her heels and Gordon slipped out of her attention. Mickey didn’t fade in the slightest. He had a slow smile, a real one that showed beneath the quick grin he’d been using to tease his buddy.
He didn’t blink, squint, look away…or look down toward her chest. Mickey faced her eye to eye and offered that easy smile.
Summer is definitely looking up, she thought to herself. Most definitely. Didn’t mean she was going to make it easy for him.
“Mickey? Like the mouse?”
Gordon snorted out a laugh, slapped Mickey on the back, and headed away.
“Not Mickey Rooney either,” he offered in an unperturbed tone, showing no desire to hurry off to his aircraft.
“Not short and round?”
“Nor likely to break into a song-and-dance routine. And Mickey Mantle died about the time we both entered grade school, so I’m not him either.”
“How about Mickey Blue Eyes?”
“Well, my name is Mickey. Eyes are blue.”
“You don’t strike me as the Hugh Grant romantic comedy type.”
He shrugged noncommittally, “You the type to watch them?”
“Not so much,” Robin admitted. Astute question. “So, Mick Blue Eyes it is.”
At that he smiled and those blue eyes lit and sparkled with laughter that was only suggested by the sudden curve of his lips.

~*~*~*~

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Kindle: http://amzn.to/1qVPtHG
Amazon PBK: http://amzn.to/1XWwCXN
Apple: http://apple.co/1WblxTS
BAM: http://bit.ly/1SnyK9m
B&N: http://bit.ly/1qC1GkK
Chapters: http://bit.ly/1WBmyF6
Indiebound: http://bit.ly/1qTKDuW
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1MDB1hA

Amazon Series Link: http://amzn.to/1qVPDyM

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IMG_3312

5 Copies of Pure Heat by M.L. Buchman

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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BIO PIC M.L. BUCHMANM. L. Buchman has over 35 novels and an ever-expanding flock of short stories in print. His military romantic suspense books have been named Barnes & Noble and NPR “Top 5 of the year,” Booklist “Top 10 of the Year,” and RT “Top 10 Romantic Suspense of the Year.” In addition to romantic suspense, he also writes contemporaries, thrillers, and fantasy and science fiction.

In among his career as a corporate project manager he has: rebuilt and single-handed a fifty-foot sailboat, both flown and jumped out of airplanes, designed and built two houses, and bicycled solo around the world.

He is now a full-time writer, living on the Oregon Coast with his beloved wife. He is constantly amazed at what you can do with a degree in Geophysics. You may keep up with his writing at http://www.mlbuchman.com.

AUTHOR LINKS: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | YouTube

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Spotlight, Quiz & Giveaway: I Kissed a Rogue by Shana Galen

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I Kissed a Rogue (Covent Garden Cubs, Book 3) by Shana Galen

Genre: Historical Romance

Publication Date: March 1, 2016

Synopsis

imageOnce she spurned the man…

When the Duke of Lennox hires Sir Brook Derring, England’s best investigator, to find his daughter, Brook intends only to rescue the lady and return to his solitary life. He deals with London’s roughest criminals every day of the week; surely he should be able to endure seeing his first love again—the perfect girl who broke his heart…

Now her life depends on him

Lady Lillian-Anne Lennox has always done her best to live up to her father’s standards of perfection—at the cost of following her heart. When she’s kidnapped and her perfect life is shattered, Lila has another chance. Together, Lila and Brook navigate not only the dark and deadly side of London, but the chasm of pride and prejudice that divides them.

~*~*~*~

Excerpt

She had to escape. She couldn’t die down here, in the rank dark, alone. She might deserve such a death, but she’d fight it with every last ounce of strength. She’d almost freed her hands by twisting and working the rope against her chafed wrists until it slackened. Her captors hadn’t tied it very tightly, but that was the only mistake they’d made.
Lila had no idea how long she’d been in the dank, cold cellar, but she knew the moment her life went completely astray. The carriage had raced along the dark streets of London, the familiar clip-clop of the horses’ hooves almost like music in her ears. She’d pulled her thick pelisse more tightly around her bare shoulders and rested her dancing slippers on the warm brick at her feet.
All she’d wanted was her cozy bed and a cup of tea. She hadn’t even cared that by leaving her cousin Rose’s betrothal ball early, she risked her father’s wrath in the morning. She’d attended the betrothal tea, the betrothal dinner, and now the betrothal ball. Would that Rose marry and be done with it. It was during that uncharitable line of thinking that she heard John Coachman call out and the carriage slowed.
Lila had parted the curtains in an effort to see what was the matter, but all she’d seen was the swirl of London fog and the amorphous shapes of the outriders moving to stand protectively in front of the carriage door. She’d sighed with impatient annoyance.
“Now wh—?” She’d clamped her mouth shut at the sound of a thump and an unfamiliar man’s voice. The carriage rocked as the horses danced with fear. She waited for John Coachman’s reassuring words and heard only a muffled shout and the pop of what sounded like her father’s rifle.
Her heart pounding in fear, she’d slid one lock into place and was reaching for the other when and a tall, lanky man yanked the door open.
He’d smiled, his thin lips and cheeks stretching over his facial bones. “Hello, Lady Lillian-Anne.”
From there, everything was a blur. She’d been dragged from the carriage, hooded, and pushed against the conveyance, her hands roughly bound. Lila had been so shocked at her mistreatment, she hadn’t even screamed, and then she’d been lifted and tossed over a man’s shoulders. She hadn’t been carried far before she’d heard the squeak and squeal of a door being pried open and the echo of boots on slatted wood floors. Another door and then another and her captor had carried her down a flight of stairs and dropped her on her bottom.
She’d screamed then and scurried backward, only to run up against a pair of hard boots. A voice, much like the one who’d greeted her, hissed in her ear. “Shut yer potato hole. Keep quiet or I stuff my drawers down yer throat. You hear me, Duchess?”
She’d nodded and closed her mouth. She’d pulled her legs in and hunched her shoulders, making herself small, waiting for what seemed an eternity for what was to happen next. Would they rob her? Rape her?
She was not a duchess, only the daughter of one. She had the wild thought that perhaps the men wanted her stepmother, the Duchess of Lennox. But, no. They’d called her Lady Lillian-Anne. They knew who she was. They’d planned the abduction and whatever was to come next.
Lila had shivered, her body shaking uncontrollably with fear and cold. Finally, the man moved away. At his word, the others followed, and she heard their boots on the stairs and then the thud as the door closed.
She’d sat on the hard floor, the small pebbles and rocks digging into her skin through her silk ballgown and the pelisse. She jumped at the creaks and pops of the building settling, fearing each minute sound was the men returning for her. Gradually, she grew accustomed to the sounds but not the smell, never the smell. Something had died down here—many somethings—and with the hood over her face, she could only imagine. Lila envisioned rat corpses responsible for the sharp, sickly fragrance that burned her nostrils. When she began to imagine human bodies, she bit her lip hard to stop the rising panic.
Strange that in the middle of London, all was silent but for her teeth chattering.
They’d stopped chattering now—after too many hours to count. Lila was too numb to feel the cold any longer. The rope around her wrists was all she cared about. She twisted and pulled until finally she managed to squeeze one hand free. She bit her raw lip against the pain of the rough rope sliding against her bare skin. The gloves she’d painstakingly inched off might have protected her bare skin, but they were one more layer between her and freedom.
With a wince, her wrists slid apart, and she exhaled softly, hugging her arms around her chest. Her shoulders throbbed, and the simple act of rotating them in the opposite direction was sheer bliss. She felt for the opening of the hood she wore and quickly tore it off. Charcoal gray replaced the blackness. If the cellar had openings of any kind, she couldn’t spot them in the dark of night. She prayed it was still night and that morning would show her some sort of escape.
And not a stack of rotting bodies.
She had to find a way out. By now her father must have realized she’d been abducted. He would be frantic with worry. Had her captors sent a ransom note? Was that what this was about? Colin would make the duke pay it. Colin and Lila had grown closer since their mother’s death. He wouldn’t allow their father to ignore a ransom note.
If there was a ransom note.
What if the Duchess of Lennox was behind this? Lila’s stepmother hated her, but even she would not stoop to hiring mercenaries to abduct her stepdaughter.
Lady Selina would. She and Lila had hated each other since their first Seasons, when Lord Hugh had asked Lila to dance before Selina. From then on, it had been war.
Selina was married now and certainly too busy to plan attacks on Lila. But Madeleine Stratham, her cousin Rose’s friend, was not too busy, and she had intentionally stepped on Lila’s gown at the ball tonight, hissing, “Watch out!”
Had that been a warning?
Lila’s head spun. If she tried to count all of her enemies, it would take hours. And who knew what her abductors would do to her when they returned. She pressed her hands against the cold, dirt floor beneath her, moving her fingers until she found her gloves. She pulled them on again, for warmth as much as protection, and moved cautiously forward, hands outstretched. Her knees trembled and wobbled.
“Please no bodies. Please no bodies,” she chanted under her breath.
The cellar was blissfully empty. She discovered a wall and followed it around to the base of the stairwell. Her hands traveled over that rough wood until she found the opening. The stairwell had no railing, so she carefully lifted her skirts and moved slowly and silently upward. Her fingertips touched the wood of the door at the top, and she stood listening.
She heard nothing but silence and the strains of music farther away. Perhaps a tavern or gin house was nearby. She couldn’t be certain a guard wasn’t on the other side of the door, but she tried the handle anyway. The handle moved, but the door did not budge when she pushed on it.
Some sort of lock to keep it closed and secure.
Lila waited, again listening for movement or an indication her efforts to escape had been noted. When she heard nothing, she rattled the door. The wood was flimsy and old. One serious push against it, and she could compromise the lock.
She took a jagged breath and said a quick prayer. She’d never prayed so much—no, she’d been her own god for too many years. Lila stepped back, careful not to go too far and tumble down the stairs, then rammed the door with her shoulder.

~*~*~*~

Buy Links

Kindle: http://amzn.to/1VLTPe4
Amazon PBK: http://amzn.to/21BPj5F
B&N: http://bit.ly/1RkrxGz
Apple: http://apple.co/1L8K6hl
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1oI7JD6

Amazon Series Link: http://amzn.to/1TgrL58

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Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

imageShana Galen is the national bestselling author of fast-paced adventurous Regency historicals, including the RT Reviewers’ Choice The Making of a Gentleman. Her books have been sold in Brazil, Russia, and the Netherlands and featured in the Rhapsody and Doubleday Book Clubs. A former English teacher in Houston’s inner city, Shana now writes full time. She is a happily married wife and mother of a daughter and a spoiled cat and lives in Houston, Texas.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Spotlight, Excerpt & Giveaway: How to Wed a Warrior (Broadswords and Ballrooms Series) by Christy English

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How to Wed a Warrior (Broadswords and Ballrooms Series) by Christy English

Publication Date: February 2, 2016

Genre: Historical Romance

Synopsis

imageHe’s the scourge of the Season…

Reasons to quit London:
1. It’s not the Highlands.
2. It will never be the Highlands.
3. It’s full of the bloody English.

When his wild spitfire of a sister makes a scene by drawing a claymore in Hyde Park, Highlander Robert Waters knows something must be done. To forestall the inevitable scandal, he hires widowed Prudence Whittaker to teach his sister how to be a lady—never expecting to find unbridled passion beneath the clever Englishwoman’s prim exterior.

Mrs. Whittaker is a fraud. Born Lady Prudence Farthington, daughter of the ruined earl of Lynwood, she’s never even been married. In order to make her way in the world, she has to rely on her wits and a web of lies…lies a sexy Highlander is all too close to unraveling.

He swears he will possess her; she vows he will do nothing of the sort. Yet as passions heat, Prudence comes to realize the illicit pleasure that can be had in going toe-to-toe with a Scot.

~*~*~*~

A Lady’s Guide to Proper (Mis)Behavior by Mrs. Prudence Whittaker on Proper Ton Etiquette (with additions by Miss Mary Elizabeth Waters)

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“A lady’s hair is always carefully tended and smooth.” —Mrs. Prudence
“A lady’s hair is on her own head, so it’s her own business what it looks like.” —Mary Elizabeth

~*~*~*~

Excerpt

Robert’s eyes gleamed with mischief—and with something else, something darker, and a bit alarming. Pru’s stomach jumped at the sight of that heat, and a delicious shiver coursed through her.
When he spoke again, his voice was thick with the music of his homeland, and with something else. “Well, now, and don’t I love a woman with a backbone.”
“I’m sure you do. Now leave this room and go find one.”
“Aye,” he said, moving closer to her. She straightened her shoulders, and sniffed. His smile was infectious, and she had to work very hard not to give in and smile back.
“I do love a sniffing woman. A woman who knows her own mind, and isn’t shy about telling the world.”
“That is very edifying. I am sure there are many such women outside these four walls. Again, Mr. Waters, I bid you good day.”
Robert laughed and shook his head, stepping even closer until he was standing a mere two feet from her.
She took in the warm scent of cedar, and a hint of something else, some spice that was all Robert Waters and little else. She was sure that if he stood so close for much longer, she would lose the ability to speak at all.
“But you see, Mrs. Prudence, that’s the trouble. There are very few women beyond these four walls that speak their minds to a man and damn the consequences.”
“Honesty is its own reward.” Her heart thudded so hard that the pulse in her throat leaped. His eyes seemed to follow it, and then move up the line of her jaw, to her cheekbones, to her eyes.
“I wonder if it might reward me,” he said.
He closed the distance between them, and kissed her.
She had been kissed before, of course. She had been a debutante during the Peninsular War, when everyone thought that the young men around them were surely going to die. She had almost been engaged, and her swain had kissed her on the garden steps of her father’s house in the moonlight, so many years ago now that it seemed to have happened to another woman altogether. But this kiss was different, because Robert Waters offered it.
Pru shocked herself by accepting it for what it was—a warm touch in a world that was often very cold indeed.
She found herself pressed against him in the next instant. His hands did not come down on her. He did not touch her waist or her shoulders, but held his hands aloft, as if she kept him at gunpoint. She did not think of what that meant, but simply moved against him, taking in the heat of his body with her own. If only she might close the door and ignore her life and future and simply have him there in that lovely, overly luxurious room.
She felt his tongue on her lips, and she opened her mouth to his coaxing. He tasted of warm honey from breakfast. He tasted of man, and in some strange, indefinable way, of home.
He still had not touched her but to place his lips on hers. He withdrew his tongue, and then his mouth, and then stepped back, so that she was left alone, grasping at nothing.

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Buy Links

Kindle http://amzn.to/1YB4gRT
Amazon PBK http://amzn.to/1QX3NsJ
Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/1kqQp3g
Apple: http://apple.co/1UfuR60
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Indie Bound: http://bit.ly/1SlgfmX

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Giveaway

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About the Author

Ever since Christy English picked up a fake sword in stage combat class at the age of fourteen, she has lived vicariously through the sword-wielding women of her imagination. A banker by day and a writer by night, she loves to eat chocolate, drink too many soft drinks, and walk the mountain trails of her home in North Carolina.

Social Networking Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Review, Quiz & Giveaway: SEAL Wolf In Too Deep (SEAL Wolf, #4) by Terry Spear

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SEAL Wolf In Too Deep (SEAL Wolf, #4) by Terry Spear

Publication Date: February 2, 2016

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Synopsis

imageLove spells danger for an alpha SEAL wolf and the woman who steals his heart in this steamy shifter romance from USA Today bestselling author Terry Spear

His love is dangerous

As a Navy SEAL and police diver, alpha wolf shifter Allan Rappaport knows how to handle tough situations, but the arrival of a human diving partner—especially one as attractive as Debbie Renaud—is a whole new challenge. Getting involved is dangerous, but Debbie’s offers are hard to resist. As the heat between them rises and a murder plot thickens, Allan is on the brink of exposing his biggest secret.

But she’s diving in headfirst

For Debbie, working with another top-notch diver like Allan is too good to be true, and their mutual attraction is hotter than she could have dreamed. Debbie suspects he’s hiding something, though, and she’s set on figuring it out—one off-duty rendezvous at a time. But when Debbie gets between a werewolf hunter and his intended victim, suddenly she is plunged straight into the heart of Allan’s world—a world she never knew existed.

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Donna 4 stars

A good blend of wolf shifters, Navy SEALS and protecting those you serve. I like this series and am glad this was another well written installment with danger at every turn. This story was about Allan falling for a human. I was glad that he didn’t just ignore the chemistry that was brewing between him and Debbie or try to make her mad so she would give up. It was a very nice change and led to some pretty sexy encounters. Ms. Spear writes her characters realistically so there is always something to relate to so you feel more a part of things. I look forward to the next installment and hope someday Rowdy will get his turn.

*Review copy provided by Sourcebooks in exchange for an honest review.

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Excerpt

He pulled out a couple of mugs while she warmed up the cocoa. He chuckled and she turned to see what was funny and nearly had a heart attack.
He was holding one hot pink and white mug while reading it, the other sitting on the counter: Men should be like my curtains, easy to pull and well hung.
Her lips parted, she had to have turned cherry red, and she turned away quickly before she burned the cocoa. Now what? Explain that a friend had given them to her when her last boyfriend and she had parted company? Or just ignore the fact that they were drinking out of those cups while she was having hot cocoa with him and pretend she wasn’t embarrassed to the tip of her toes?
He brought the mugs over. “Anything else?”
“There’s a can of whipped cream in the fridge, if you want some.”
“Real cream,” he said, eyeing the can. “Looks good.” He gave it to her, and he lifted the mugs.
She shook up the can and pointed it at the right mug, pushed the nozzle, and the cream dripped and fizzled. Not to be thwarted, she shook it again, hoping that it wasn’t defective. And then the whipped cream swirled around with perfect ridges in a twirl on top with a cute little pointy peak. Perfect.
Then she turned to the other mug, shook the can again, and pushed the nozzle. It was working great until halfway through her little mountain of whipped cream twirling to perfection, when the nozzle malfunctioned again and spewed whipped cream everywhere.
In horror, she stopped what she was doing and stared at the white cream splattered all over Allan’s chest and a few that had dotted his boxer briefs. Her mouth agape, she glanced up at him.
His eyes sparkled with mirth and he laughed.
“Oh, oh, let me get something to wipe it up,” she said, belatedly, and set the can of whipped cream on the counter.
She grabbed some paper towels and wetted them, then rushed back to wipe the mess up. He was still holding onto both hot pink mugs of cocoa. She had every intention of taking one of the mugs and letting him clean himself, but he just moved his arms apart as if to say she made the mess, she could wash it up.
She thought she was going to die. Yes, he was totally hot. And yes, she’d fantasized about making love to him—since they were both unattached, and she truly liked him. But in her wildest dreams she would never have imagined making him cocoa in the middle of the night in her duplex while he stood in sexy silk briefs, not baggy, but nice and form fitting, and then she proceeded to splatter him with whipped cream. All over his tanned chest and those black briefs.

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Buy Links

Kindle: http://amzn.to/1ZoeebB
Amazon PBK: http://amzn.to/1OITiZK
Apple: http://apple.co/1ZyNJ73
BAM: http://bit.ly/1RoCwkJ
B&N: http://bit.ly/2033Mqk
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1KgiYr9

Amazon Series Link: http://amzn.to/1NKeJ7i

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Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

imageUSA Today bestselling author Terry Spear has written over fifty paranormal and medieval Highland historical romances. In 2008 Heart of the Wolf was named a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. A retired officer of the U.S. Army Reserves, Terry also creates award-winning teddy bears that have found homes all over the world and is raising two Havanese puppies. She lives in Crawford, Texas.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Sampler Tour, Review & Giveaway: Target Engaged (Delta Force Series) by M.L. Buchman

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This December starts off with a bang as M.L. Buchman releases TARGET ENGAGED, the first in his brand new (and action-packed) Delta Force series! To celebrate his new release, Sourcebooks Casablanca is sharing the first six chapters of Target Engaged for FREE! Click here to download the first six chapters and check out a special note from M.L. Buchman below.

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A Note from M.L. Buchman

Dear Reader,

Welcome to my newest series: the first women of Delta Force. I can’t begin to tell you how much fun this was to write.

Most of us know little more about Delta Force than the Chuck Norris movies (which leave a lot to be desired) or perhaps we only know the name. In researching my Night Stalkers series, I kept running into these guys. They are the elite of Special Operations Forces. They are at a level of SEAL Team 6, and most would argue they were even beyond that. They are the ghost and shadow warriors who helped take down drug lord Pablo Escobar, capture Noriega, were undoubtedly behind the locating of Saddam Hussein, and are the main reason that Al-Qaeda abruptly stopped being a topic in the Iraq War when over three thousand of their leaders were swept off the board.

Yet the Pentagon states that they don’t exist. Fascinating.

And while they often work with undercover female operatives, no woman has yet managed to kick in the front door on one of the most arduous selection programs in the military.

I decided to change that.

Carla Anderson stepped forward to take the challenge. She is a not a woman out to prove she can match any man, she’s out to prove that she can beat them at their own game.

And that was the first thing that I loved about writing this series.

In the Night Stalkers, the women were strong, excellent, and determined.

To be a Delta Force woman, Carla had to add enough attitude and drive to plow through all obstacles which just made her so much fun. Nothing was off the table when it came to her attitude or her actions.

And that was the second thing I came to love about this series launcher, Target Engaged. Being Delta Force, they really do operate outside so many bounds. They are sent to do the tasks that no one else can. To that I added the additional challenge that Robert Ludlum gave to Jason Bourne (though I’m quoting the movie): “I don’t send you to kill. I send you to be invisible. I send you because you don’t exist.” I’m pretty convinced that this is part of Delta’s mission.

It is occasionally said by retired Delta Force operators (as the on-duty ones never speak): “If we’d been sent in to take down bin Laden, you still wouldn’t know how it was done.” To bring that to life gave me a permission as a writer to run my characters into hard and strange places and be just a little gonzo doing it.

But writing is a give and take, and I can’t begin to tell you how much the characters I created shaped my telling of this story. I like to think that they had as much fun as I did bringing this story to life.

I hope that you enjoy the reading even half as much as I enjoyed the writing!

M.L. Buchman (the Oregon Coast, November 2015)

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Get to know the Carla, and the entire Delta Force team by reading the first SIX chapters of TARGET ENGAGED for free! Just click here to download them! To get you started, we’ve included the first few pages below:

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Book Information

Target Engaged (Delta Force, 1) by M.L. Buchman

Publication Date: December 1, 2015

Genre: Romantic Suspense

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Target Engaged by M L Buchman coverBook 1 in M.L. Buchman’s thrilling NEW Delta Force series

Delta Force: The most dangerous elite counter-terrorism force on the planet
• The deadliest shooters •
• The most out-of-the-box thinkers in any military •
• Will die to get the mission done •

Sergeant Kyle Reeves: The premier soldier of the new recruits
Sergeant Carla Anderson: The first woman of Delta Force

If the training doesn’t kill them, their passion may—but Kyle Reeves and Carla Anderson blast right in. Show no fear. Have no fear. Then they get the call. The most powerful drug-smuggling ring in Venezuela needs a takedown, and Delta’s newest team leaps into the deep jungle to deliver. Giving their all? Not a problem. Giving their hearts? That takes a new level of courage.

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Donna 5 Stars

If this book is any indication of how the new series will be then I am more than ready to keep reading. I loved how it followed the group through selection and training to show how they all melded together. Kyle is strong, smart and of course sexy; with an easiness that I loved. Carla was strong and driven yet she had a normalness about her that I really liked. She never tipped into witch territory and for that I am thankful. The author did a good job keeping the technical stuff at a level where you believed where you were but it didn’t overshadow the story. And what a story. The dangerous ops and the sexy romance kept me frantically reading. This is romantic adrenaline junkie’s kind of book. I can’t wait for the next one to see which member’s turn is next and what trouble they’ll find themselves in.

*Review copy provided by Sourcebooks in exchange for an honest review. 

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Amazon: http://amzn.to/1HbzzAk
Apple: http://apple.co/1jZ6Q6Z
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Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1MJf5ez
Chapters: http://bit.ly/1Kunh0y
Indiebound: http://bit.ly/1S12fwT
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1RsIhKu

FIREHAWKS SERIES INFORMATION 

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M.L. BUCHMAN BOOK BUNDLE

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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BIO PIC M.L. BUCHMANM. L. Buchman has over 35 novels and an ever-expanding flock of short stories in print. His military romantic suspense books have been named Barnes & Noble and NPR “Top 5 of the year,” Booklist “Top 10 of the Year,” and RT “Top 10 Romantic Suspense of the Year.” In addition to romantic suspense, he also writes contemporaries, thrillers, and fantasy and science fiction.

In among his career as a corporate project manager he has: rebuilt and single-handed a fifty-foot sailboat, both flown and jumped out of airplanes, designed and built two houses, and bicycled solo around the world.

He is now a full-time writer, living on the Oregon Coast with his beloved wife. He is constantly amazed at what you can do with a degree in Geophysics. You may keep up with his writing at http://www.mlbuchman.com.

SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | YouTube

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