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The Hometown Heroes Authors Take the Inside the Actors Studio Quiz

PetsforVetsLogoToday is the release day for Hometown Heroes: Hotter Ever After! This bundle includes SIXTEEN complete novels–some never before published–by SEVENTEEN fabulous authors (one book was co-written), with all the proceeds going tPets for Vets, an organization that matches shelter animals with military veterans.

16 books for only $1.99 with all net proceeds going to Pets for Vets!

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They’re all hometown heroes, guys from small towns who’ve made a name for themselves, big or small, who’ve withstood the odds and risen to the challenge, who are heroes in their own right.

A LITTLE HARMLESS SEX by Melissa Schroeder
CHANGE THE GAME by Lucy Monroe 
WILD RIDE by Nancy Warren
HEARTBREAK ON A STICK by Sabrina York
MADRONA SUNSET by Jami Davenport
BRACE FOR IMPACT by Allie K. Adams
HONORABLE SACRIFICE by Destiny Blaine
SHE’S WORTH IT ALL by Cathryn Cade
DECEIVING DANTE by Kate Davies
ROCK, RATTLE AND ROLL by Cari Quinn and Taryn Elliott
GRAVE DANGER by Rachel Grant
TURNING THIRTY-TWELVE by Sandy James
HIS ONLY DESIRE by Adrianne Lee  
EVEN HEROES CRY by Hildie McQueen 
THE VIXEN & THE VET by Katy Regnery
TROUBLE WITH A COWBOY by Sandy Sullivan

Amazon | B&N | iBooks | Kobo | Smashwords

Once again, to learn more about the Hometown Heroes authors, I donned my James Lipton beard and put them in the Inside the Actors Studio hot seat.

What is your favorite word?

Lucy: Hugs! Allie: Any Allie’ism (words I blend together to create a new word). Currently, everything is fantabulous-o! This is as close as I get speaking Spamish (that means an attempt at Spanish but failing miserably—much like Spam is for meat)
Sabrina: Kerfuffle. It just sounds…tasty! Rachel: Schadenfreude
Jami: Win Adrianne: WINNER!!!
Destiny: Extraordinary Kate: Pleasure
Cathryn: Yes

What is your least favorite word?

Lucy: Slurs Allie: Can’t
Sabrina: The “C” word for lady parts Rachel: Fart
Jami: Lose Adrianne: Sexism
Destiny: Never Kate: Greasy
Cathryn: Can’t

What turns you on?

Lucy: Lovingkindness.  I’ve been known to get very amorous when my husband cleans the kitchen. Allie: Chillaxin on the couch with the hubs. I also have a thing for sexy shoulders.
Sabrina: Bacon. Yesssss. Simply bacon. Rachel: Captain America
Jami: A hot athlete Adrianne: Besides sexy men? True Friendship
Destiny: An intelligent man who knows how to work his swagger without coming across as arrogant Kate: Dinner on the table and no housework to finish
Cathryn: My husband’s shaving cologne

What turns you off?

Lucy: Meanness Allie: Being an arrogant asshat. If he’s a jack wagon, even his shoulders can’t save him.
Sabrina: Bullies. Can’t stand them Rachel: Smoking
Jami: People texting and driving Adrianne: Meanness
Destiny: A belligerent drunk who thinks he’s cute Kate: Dirty laundry (or housework in general)
Cathryn: Feeling fat

What sound or noise do you love?

Lucy: Babies giggling Allie: That swooshing sound my Mac makes when I send a manuscript off to the editor.
Sabrina: The oboe. Haunting. I also love the cello. Rachel: My children’s laughter
Jami: Wind in the trees Adrianne: My cats purring
Destiny: Ocean tides Kate: Laughter
Cathryn: Zach Brown’s voice singing

What sound or noise do you hate?

Lucy: Fists hitting flesh. I hate abuse and have opened my house to more than one woman or teen at risk. Allie: The sound of a low, ominous growl behind you when you’re out hunting right after you’ve spotted fresh cougar tracks (yes, that really happened)
Sabrina: The nasal whine of a mosquito hovering around me, plotting to suck my blood. I wish no harm to any creature on earth…except mosquitoes. They can all die a heinous miserable death. Rachel: Traffic
Jami: Traffic Adrianne: Tinnitus
Destiny: The sound of a circular saw in use Kate: Any heavy equipment that squeals/whines
Cathryn: Whining… doesn’t matter who

What is your favorite curse word?

Lucy: Bollocks Allie: Fartnarker. That’s totally a word and fits any situation. It’s not even an Allie’ism.
Sabrina: Blurg (I channel Tina Fey in 30 Rock sometimes). I am also partial to “frick.” Rachel: Fuck
Jami: Shit Adrianne: The F word
Destiny: I take the 5th Kate: Douchecanoe
Cathryn: Hmmm, can’t say it here

What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?

Lucy: Psychologist Allie: I want to write full time. Currently I have a Stinkin’ Day Job. If I could write full time, I’d be fartnarkin’ fantabulous-o!
Sabrina: Glassblower. Sigh…I dabbled with glass at one time and loved it. So beautiful. Rachel: CIA Case Officer or superhero
Jami: Interior designer or bartender Adrianne: A singer, but the world would cringe.
Destiny: Stripping. Just kidding. Psychologist Kate: Actor (I was in the drama program in college and always regret not sticking with it)
Cathryn: Chris Hemsworth’s movie set hair stylist

What profession would you not like to do?

Lucy: Sewer management Allie: Pretty much anything on Mike Rowe’s “Dirty Jobs” show
Sabrina: Housecleaner. Exhibit A: My house Rachel: Wearing a hot dog costume and passing out flyers.
Jami: Cook Adrianne: Toll Booth money taker
Destiny: Retail salesperson Kate: Septic Tank cleaner
Cathryn: Middle school teacher (been there)

If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?

Lucy: Well done. 🙂 Allie: Take a left at the first cloud. You’re mom and dad are there waiting for you.
Sabrina: O Myself, Sabrina. I loved your books! Rachel: I’ve decided to make an exception for you.
Jami: Welcome, my child! Adrianne: Kim’s been waiting for you.
Destiny: For a minute there, I wasn’t sure you’d make it but it sure is good to see you. Now let’s dust off those wings and find your halo. Kate: Welcome!
Cathryn: Whew! You made it!

GIVEAWAY

Because all proceeds go to charity, this week’s giveaway is a little different. The first TEN eligible commenters win a digital copy of HOMETOWN HEROES, gifted from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or iBooks. I will notify you in the comments if you are a winner and prizes will be awarded upon receipt of winner’s email address and choice of vendor (winners will be asked to provide that information via email, using the CONTACT US page).

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The winner of a digital copy of Never Forget by Heather Ashby is…

Ellen Lindseth

Ellen, to claim your prize, please use the CONTACT US page within ten days.

Happy Halloween and Grave Danger Winner!

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

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To celebrate Halloween we thought we’d share pictures showing how some of us here at Kiss and Thrill dress up our homes for trick-or-treaters.

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The first two photos show Sarah Andre’s romance-themed decorations.

Next up is Sharon Wray’s graveyard for the undead.

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IMG_8440The witch will greet visitors at my house.

My husband just finished making the coffin, which is on the other side of the front door. Inside are eyes that will light up, make noise, and shake the box when you make a noise.

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This week’s featured Kiss and Thrill title is Manda Collins’ WHY DUKES SAY I DO.

“I’ve been a Manda Collins fan since I first read her work, but I think Why Dukes Say I Do is the best thing she’s written yet.”

Read the full review here.

Grave Danger 72dpiThe winner of a print copy of GRAVE DANGER and a Walker-Ames House magnet is…

Sasha Bell!

To claim your prizes please use the contact us page within 10 days and be sure to include your US mailing address.

We have a great week coming up at Kiss and Thrill. On Tuesday Carey interviews Carla Neggers and on Thursday Julie Ann Walker returns for a guest blog!

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jack-o’-lanterns carved by C. and J. Grant

The Walker-Ames Haunted House – Rachel’s Inspiration for Grave Danger

IMG_8412I recently attended a ghost tour of the historic logging town Port Gamble, Washington. The town was the inspiration for the setting of my book, Grave Danger, and I was particularly excited that as part of the tour, we were able to enter the Walker-Ames house, which was my model for the Montgomery Mansion. This was my second tour of the house, but the first late at night, with a group of people hoping to run into a ghost or two. Sadly (or thankfully, depending on your point of view) we didn’t meet any specters, but I was able to take some pictures of the interior of the gorgeous old house.

IMG_8416The house was pitch-dark during the tour (since we were looking for ghosts) so I couldn’t actually see what I was taking a picture of–had no idea how bright the wallpaper was, and objects will be off-center in some shots. The daylight shots of the exterior were taken at another time.

In the book Libby stands on the porch and looks over the town, imagining how Lyle felt when living there. Later, Mark has a conversation with Jason on the porch.

IMG_8378Upon entry into the house, there is an enclosed vestibule and then an interior door into the front hall. This second photo is the interior door, taken during the ghost tour.

IMG_8422IMG_8376Next is the entry hall, with center hearth. The stairway shot following is to the right of the hearth. In Grave Danger, this is the first room Libby enters and is disappointed to take in the cold, empty room, which could be warm and inviting, given the stained-glass windows above the stairs and rich woodwork of the staircase.

IMG_8371The curved windows are in the round room to the left of the entryway, and the next photo is of the hearth in that room. This is the room where Libby interviews the elder Montgomery family members.

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The house is utterly gorgeous and it would be wonderful to see it fixed up in all its glory, except then people would live there and I wouldn’t get to go on ghost tours and take pictures, and be inspired.

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So, tell me, have you ever been on a ghost tour? Or is there a particular tour you’d like to go on? I’m giving away a print copy of Grave Danger and a magnet with a picture of the Walker-Ames house to one commenter.

Grave Danger winner

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The winner of Grave Danger is Cris! Congratulations!!

Be sure to contact us within ten days with your snail mail address to receive your signed copy of Rachel’s new book. 🙂

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Join us Tuesday for author Stacy Green talking about Black Market adoptions, the basis for her new novel TIN GOD. Have a great Memorial Day weekend!

StacyFall1pressBorn in Indiana and raised in Iowa, Stacy Green earned degrees in journalism and sociology from Drake University. After a successful advertising career, Stacy became a proud stay-at-home mom to her miracle child. Now a full-time author, Stacy juggles her time between her demanding characters and supportive family. She loves reading, cooking, and the occasional gardening excursion. Stacy lives in Marion, Iowa with her husband Rob, their daughter Grace, and the family’s three obnoxious but lovable canine children.

Rachel Grant puts herself in Grave Danger

Rachel Grant

I wanted to be an archeologist for at least a year after I discovered Macchu Picchu (Peru) in a sixth grade textbook. I later realized I might not have the patience required for the job, but that didn’t stop my fascination with ancient sites and unearthed artifacts. Which is part of what I love about Rachel Grant’s books. They give the reader a glimpse into the real world of an archeologist. Add in some danger and steamy romance, and her stories have it all.

Rachel’s latest—out today!—Grave Danger, includes a determined archeologist trying to rebuild her reputation, a stalker, an unexpected find in the archaeological site, and a sexy small town cop who’s not sure if he can trust her, but can’t stay away. You won’t want to miss it!

She’s being stalked…

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After struggling to recover from a career-crippling mistake, archaeologist Libby Maitland has landed the project of her dreams—a data recovery excavation in a picturesque, historic sawmill town. Tasked with digging up secrets of the town’s founding family, Libby soon learns that nothing in Coho, Washington, is as idyllic as it seems.

She’s barely settled into her new home when suspicious events make her believe she’s being stalked…

Or maybe she’s losing her mind.

Coho Police Chief Mark Colby can’t decide if Libby is crazy or if she has her own twisted agenda, but the deeper he delves into her past, the more intrigued he becomes. Even as he and Libby grow closer, he can’t quite let his initial suspicion go.

When Libby’s life is threatened, they must work together to determine if the truth about her stalker is buried in her past, or if the answers can be found in the layers of the excavation.

Read on for more about Rachel, archeology, and her books. And be sure to answer her question for a chance to win a signed copy of Grave Danger.

Gwen: Clearly your experience as an archeologist provides background for your stories, but was there something in particular that sparked Grave Danger? An incident? An article? A scene idea?

Rachel: The story for GD really flowed from the axiom “write what you know” – and while I’ve never been romanced by a hunky police chief or been stalked, I know a fair amount about prehistoric shell midden sites in the Pacific Northwest. I wanted to write a book about real archaeology, as it’s practiced in the United States, because most books with an archaeological storyline either focus on treasure hunting (which will get a real archaeologist blackballed) or contain other inaccuracies. So I started with the archaeological project, and plotted from there.

Avoiding spoilers, there is a discovery Libby makes during the excavation that is a real concern among archaeologists given the protocols we must follow in similar circumstances.

Is that vague or confusing enough? 😀

Gwen: Hah, now everyone has to read it. 😉 This book was the first you’d ever written. I know you’ve made a lot of changes since the first iteration almost a decade ago, but what is it about this story that kept pulling you back in?

Rachel: I shudder when I think of that first draft.  I set this story aside in 2008 so I could focus on writing Concrete Evidence and other, more suspense-y books, but I never really let this one go. This is my small-town-romantic-mystery, as opposed to my city-set-political-thrillers, and I’d love to write more books in this part of the romance genre. I’ve had the sequel plotted for years and I can’t wait to write it.

Gwen: I definitely want the sequel! In GD, Libby is an archeologist trying to restore her good name, and Mark is the chief of police of the small town where she’s starting a new project. What do you think makes these two characters perfect for each other?

Rachel: Libby is really attracted to confidence, because she’s lost confidence in herself after a professional and emotional setback, but Mark sees her strength—and the courage in her convictions that she thinks she lacks—from their first meeting. Plus they are both outsiders in a small, closed community, but they each need to understand and become members of that community as part of their respective professions.

To me, the town of Coho was a character—a beautiful, pristine historic gem on the outside, but with a dark and conflicted history that overshadows today.

FrontCover-Final-300dpiGwen: Confidence is definitely sexy. Grave Danger—and your first release Concrete Evidence—both have archeologist characters, but the books aren’t a series. Do you have related stories for either of them in the works?

Rachel: I’ve had the sequel to GD plotted for a long time and look forward to writing it. I have two sequels to CE written and am working on a third. No promises yet on when those books will be released.

Gwen: Ooh, can’t wait for more in both series. Grave Danger takes place in a small sawmill town in Washington State, and Concrete Evidence was set in the big city—Washington, D.C. Do you find it easier to write small town or big city settings?

Rachel: The fictional small town was based on an historic sawmill town not far from where I live. This setting was easier simply because I could adapt the setting to suit my needs, but I loved writing the D.C. book too, because I lived there for two years and know the city well enough to write it with confidence. In CE, every scene (except for the ones set on fictional tribal-owned land) was set in a place I’ve visited at least once. Erica’s apartment in SW D.C. was my own, and the Bethesda office building was (not really) shockingly similar to the building I worked in.

Gwen: I definitely find it easier to write about places I’ve lived or at least visited. What’s the most interesting thing you ever found while working as an archeologist?

Rachel: Oh, that’s a hard one! In the Pacific Northwest, we don’t have pottery, we have woven basketry instead. Woven fibers decompose easily—they are only preserved in ideal conditions, very wet, or very dry—so finding prehistoric basketry is rare. Years ago, I worked on an excavation inside Porcupine Cave in Eastern Washington and caves and rockshelters have wonderfully dry preservation conditions. I found—in the screen, not in situ—a small fragment of a basket. That was really cool, but it was only about an inch across and something that wouldn’t trigger backflips for people who don’t know how rare and unique the find was.

Another exciting find was in SW Idaho, when I found a petroglyph on a rock face on the Owyhee Plateau. The petroglyph itself wasn’t all that exciting – it was a simple circle slightly larger than a softball – but still, it was the first time that particular petroglyph was recorded by an archaeologist and I was thrilled to have spotted it.

On a more bizarre note, I once dug a pit and found a rusted metal bucket and shovel head—evidence the site had been looted about a hundred years before.

Gwen: How cool to be the first to record a petroglyph! And I hadn’t thought of finding looting evidence, but then I guess that’s just another layer of artifact with its own provenance… Okay, one last question, like my experience after reading about Macchu Picchu, was there a particular incident that sparked your interest in archaeology?

Rachel: I was a senior in high school when I discovered Elizabeth Peters’ mysteries, and I (fondly) blame her for my decision to become an archaeologist, which leads me to my question for our readers…

Have you ever read a book that made you reconsider your career choice?

I’m giving a signed copy of Grave Danger to one commenter. Thanks so much for hosting me today, Gwen! I want to thank all the ladies at Kiss and Thrill for the fabulous support you all have given me over the last months.

Gwen: Thanks for sharing your new release with us. I can’t wait for more of your stories!

Pick up one of Rachel’s books today. C’mon, you know you want to.

Concrete Evidence
Amazon | iTunes | Kobo | Barnes & Noble

Grave Danger
Amazon | iTunes | Barnes & Noble

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