Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Books, Chocolate and Wine with Eliza Knight, Kathryn LeVeque, Terri Brisbin, Madeline Martin and Ruth A. Casie


This week, Once Upon a Haunted Castle released. We’ve been planning this for months and we’re excited to bring you five ghost stories in five different castles in Scotland. The research was fun and the stories are fantastic. 

Eliza Knight got us started. Here is how, in her own words: "A funny thing happened to me: two friends approached me with ideas that meshed perfectly. Ruth A. Casie wanted to do a ghostly Celtic collection and Madeline Martin wanted to write about Scottish ghosts that help a hero and heroine fall in love. Immediately my mind exploded with ideas! I’d worked with Kathryn Le Veque and Terri Brisbin and thought they’d be perfect for the project, too!"
Below, each of us tell you how our stories came about.
Eliza Knight: I love a good ghost story, and in my travels to Europe, I’ve often felt the otherworldly presence of those who lived in the past. One of my favorite castles in Scotland is Dunstaffnage Castle, and I was lucky enough to visit there on my last trip! The history behind it is fascinating and haunting. There is this tale of a glaistig, or green lady, who haunts the grounds of Dunstaffnage. She is called the Ell-Maid of Dunstaffnage, but no one knows who she might have been. She appears in green, gliding over the walls, and through the forest. Her appearances often were brought on by tidings of joy or sadness within the family. This gave me an idea—in fact, it sparked a whole series! LAIRD OF SHADOWS is the opening book in my new MacDougall Legacy series (and will be releasing with bonus/expanded scenes in January 2017). In this story, we learn the origin of the Ell-Maid of Dunstaffnage… It was exciting to write this story, and I can’t wait for you all to read it, and to see what happens as I follow the MacDougall family throughout generations in my new series!
In Eliza Knight’s LAIRD OF SHADOWS, a decade old vow and an attack of Vikings brings Lady Elle Cam’béal to Dunstaffnage Castle seeking the help of the new, handsome, provocative laird with a beastly temper—Beiste MacDougall. As battles and treachery rain down upon them, Beiste and Elle find an unlikely ally in a ghost, and discover that a few stolen moments of passion can bring light from the shadows…
Kathryn LeVeque: In my novella, DEEP INTO DARKNESS, I drew a huge amount of inspiration from one of my favorite poets, Edgar Allan Poe. This was also my first story set in Scotland and I really wanted to do it right - creepy castle + Poe = Delicious Eeriness! 
I've done novellas based on Poe's works before, so it's really my interpretation of his poetry. In this case, the 'host' that narrates one of Poe's most famous poems, "The Raven", is also the host in my story. He's an old Viking who takes in two travelers for the night. And that's when the fun happens. I loved my hero and heroine so much that I had to write a full-length novel for them - THE RED LION will be released October 4th so readers can see how Jamison and Havilland met. But the bottom line is that I had a great time writing about a highlander hero and a great time writing a Medieval ghost story. I hope readers enjoy!
In Kathryn Le Veque's DEEP INTO DARKNESS, Findlater Castle in the Scottish Highlands becomes a place of mystery and doom for Jamison Munro and his wife,Havilland. Traveling across the highlands one dark and stormy night, they stumble upon a lonely Host in Findlater Castle, a pathetic soul waiting for his wife to return to him. It is a terrible tale of a tragic love story that the Host tells the travelers but when Havilland becomes curious about mysterious tapping sounds that go on in the middle of the night, she soon realizes the danger that she and her husband are in. It becomes a race against time for Havilland to free a trapped spirit and save both their lives in the process.
Terri Brisbin: When invited to contribute to this collection, I was lost! LOL! All I knew was that it must somehow involved Duntulm Castle, which I’ve visited several times and is known to be haunted. Once I was set on that location, I looked at the clans in the area and knew that the MacLeods and the MacDonalds were rivals for control of the Isle of Skye for centuries. A perfect choice for battling families. . . and forbidden love!
I kept hearing the opening line of ‘Romeo and Juliet’ as I was planning out my story – “Two households, both alike in dignity, In fair Verona, where we lay our scene, From ancient grudge break to new mutiny, Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean. From forth the fatal loins of these two foes A pair of star-cross'd lovers. . . .” Of course, I wanted a ‘happily-ever-after’ so I adapted my Romeo and Juliet to make sure that happens! I suspect I will revisit the MacLeods and MacDonalds of Skye again....
In Terri Brisbin’s UPON A MISTY SKYE, Alexander MacDonald and Isabel MacLeod were not supposed to meet or fall in love or marry. Now that they have, both of their parents plan to separate them, by any means possible. But the ghost of Duntulm Castle has other plans for the forbidden lovers and those who stand in the way of true love.
Madeline Martin: I’ve always loved haunted castles and the stories behind them. When first starting coming up with the idea for A Ghostly Tale of Forbidden Love, I read through all the ghost stories in Scotland until I came to one about Castle of Park. There were two ghosts: one of a monk who had been walled into the castle and left for dead, and another of a woman in green who was a servant – she’d  fell in love with the laird, ended up pregnant and then leapt to her death after having been fired. Then I thought, what if I saved the servant? Don’t worry – there still ends up being a second ghost to placate history, but who will it end up being?  
 I actually was fortunate enough to stay for two nights at Castle of Park while in Scotland a couple weeks back. While I didn’t see any ghosts, the stay was absolutely magical.
In Madeline Martin’s A GHOSTLY TALE OF FORBIDDEN LOVE, Gavin MacDuff is a laird with a cruel and bitter aunt he’s sworn to protect. Senara is the new lady’s maid at Castle of Park and has sacrificed everything for the betterment of her family. Their paths tangle and lead to a road of hidden longing and secret passion – all of which is threatened by the power of one ghost who is fixed on revenge.
Ruth A. Casie: When I wrote The Guardian’s Witch I developed a character, Jamie Collins. He’s the hero’s close friend, confidant and at times conscience.  I’ve wanted to give Jamie his own story I just didn’t know what it would be until we started planning this collection. Castles, highlanders, ghosts, these were the elements that screamed Jamie Collins to me. When I sat down the story almost wrote itself.
My story is about Jamie and Laura Reynolds, two childhood friends who find themselves trying to solve a double murder not only to bring the murderer to justice, but to put a ghost to rest. Jamie and Laura’s relationship turns from friends to lovers but their whole story couldn’t be told in a novella. I have so much more to tell you about them that I had to write a full-length novel for them - THE HIGHLANDER’S ENGLISH WOMAN will be released in December. Readers will be able to see how Jamie and Laura’s relationship is tested and who helps Jamie along the way. This was a fun story to write. I hope you enjoy reading about them.
In Ruth A. Casie’s THE MAXWELL GHOST, traitors, deception, murders and ghosts run rampant at Caerlaverock Castle. Jamie Collins, a man of reality not hocus pocus, serves Lord Herbert in exchange for a his own farm.  Laura Reynolds, the Herbert's distant cousin comes to the castle to solve the murders and put the ghost to rest. The two, long-time friends find their destinies intertwined with hidden passions, but all is in jeopardy when Laura becomes the murderer’s next target. Jamie will find he needs some ghostly assistance to save Laura and declare his love.

I hope you enjoyed hearing from each of us. Here is a short video about our stories.


ONCE UPON A HAUNTED CASTLE is currently available at a discounted price of $0.99 until next week. Here's where you can get your copy.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, September 26, 2016

Medieval Monday with Ruth A. Casie

After taking a break for the late summer days, Medieval Monday is back. Our theme this month is travel and I have the perfect excerpt for you from my new story, THE MAXWELL GHOST featured in the novella anthology, Once Upon a Haunted Castle. Traitors, deception, murders and ghosts run rampant at The Maxwell’s Caerlaverock Castle. Jamie Maxwell Collins, a man of reality not magic, serves Lord Herbert in exchange for his own farm.  Laura Reynolds, Lord Herbert's distant cousin comes to the castle to solve the murders and put the ghost to rest. The two, long-time friends find their destinies intertwined with hidden passions, but all is in jeopardy when Laura becomes the murderer’s next target. Jamie will find he needs some ghostly assistance to save Laura and declare his love.
Here, Jamie is bringing Laura to Caerlaverock Castle. On their journey they are attacked by reivers. I hope you enjoy this excerpt.
Excerpt from The Maxwell Ghost:
He and Laura were targets in the swift moving water. He needed to get farther downstream, away from the marshland. He cursed himself for worrying about her propriety rather than her safety.
The sound of splashing from up river grew closer.
“Wrap your arms around my waist and try not to lose your seat.”
They reached the far bank and raced along the river, the raiders not far behind.
“You need to let me down,” she yelled at him in the wind. “You can go faster without me.”
“Keep down,” he said between clenched teeth and pulled his sword. They raced on, the land a blur as they flew by.
The spray of water from his horse’s pounding hooves turned into small clouds of dust as they came out of the marshland into the meadow. His horse couldn’t maintain this speed much longer. They reached the area where the river dog-legged to the right. A dense fog hung low in the forest. Jamie let loose his battle cry then veered into the woods.
They raced on. Out of the mist his men charged and dashed past them set to do battle with the reivers close behind them.
Jamie and Laura raced on. Laura glanced over his shoulder.
“Rider behind us.” Jamie urged his horse on faster. If they didn’t stop soon, the poor animal would collapse.
Another glance. The man was gaining ground. Think, she told herself. Sunlight bounced off Jamie’s sword. Could it work? It had to.
“Put your sword on your left shoulder then make a quick half-turn to your left and face the rider. Don’t stop, charge,” Laura said as she lay as close to his horse as possible to give Jamie more room to maneuver.
“Don’t look. It’s not going to be a pretty sight.”
She closed her eyes tight.
Jamie followed her instructions. The sound of the horse’s hooves echoed in her head as he completed the maneuver and his horse sprang forward. With the full weight of the charging horse behind his sword, he hit the raider in the chest. The man fell to the ground. His disembodied head rolled somewhere in the mist.
Jamie turned his horse again and continued into the woods. Laura sat up. The trees sped by. She began to panic at the tall hedge row that loomed in front of them.
Their direction didn’t waver. Rather than slow down, the animal gathered speed. Jamie crushed her in front of him and held her head against his chest.
“I won’t let anything happen to you. Hold me.”
The sensation of flying through the air frightened and exhilarated her at the same time. For a moment, her heart stopped. How they landed without the horse falling or them being thrown was beyond her, but they did.
The horse slowed to a halt, lathered and blowing hard. His men were soon with them.
Buy Links: Amazon/Kindle, iBook, BN, KOBO   

Friday, September 23, 2016

Books, Chocolate and Wine with N.N. Light

Sometimes, when we’re nose down writing, working on our marketing, taking classes, reading to keep up with our craft, taking care of family, and taking care of ourselves we lose sight of what we’ve accomplished. Book-versaries give us an opportunity to look back and see what we’ve done. So, Happy Book-versary to Princess of the Light and author N.N. Light.
Mary's the Princess of the Light but her only hope is to make a pact with her enemy.
Mary Miller receives a startling visitation from Gabriel, the Messenger of God. The Archangel reveals an astounding truth--Mary is the Princess of the Light and even more amazing, her destiny is to battle Lucifer's army of demons and restore the balance of good and evil on Earth. It's getting harder to fulfill her new role and keep her identity secret while juggling her personal life, and when Than, Lucifer's second in command, amps up the attacks on her, she knows she needs help.
Joe Deacons is everything she's ever wanted in a man. And as providence would have it, in a moment of great need, he's the Warrior of Light--the one who can help her defeat the forces of darkness.
Not so simple when they confront Lisbeth, a demon hell-bent on usurping Than and Lucifer himself.  When Lisbeth wages war and several innocent people die, Mary must form an alliance with her enemy in order to destroy her.  But will this be a grave error or the choice that saves their world?
Buy Links:
During the month of September, Princess of the Light is on sale for the super-low price of $.99 USD. 100% of the proceeds during this time will go directly to our local food bank to help feed children and families in need. This is the first time Princess of the Light has ever been this low and who knows when it will be this low again.
Excerpt:
Marie furrowed her brow and softly interrupted, "André is the Walking Man?"
I looked at Marie and asked, "You've heard of him?"
Marie nodded. "Of course. He is a staple of the Downtown area. There are a few groups I'm affiliated with that hand out food and clothing to those in need. He never comes to these events so I leave them by the area where he sleeps." She paused, thoughtfully. "I just can't believe that it is André."
Joe cleared his throat and looked at his father. "What happened to André?"
Alfred sighed and after a moment said, "It really was the fault of that witch he was married to. She and her family treated him horribly. She was a gold digger and all she cared about was money and the prestige."
Marie interrupted Alfred by saying, "I remember her. She was so mean to André and all she cared about was looking rich. Wealth is a gift—she just wanted it for a toy. She treated André so badly... and his mother-in-law was the worst. She would put him down all the time. In front of other people, no less."
Alfred continued, "André was a good man and worked hard. He was working on a big project for the city. He worked night and day on the project and told me it was going to put Golden Lake on the map.
"He absolutely adored his daughter, too. I remember that clearly. She was his everything." Alfred paused, apparently lost in his thoughts. With a sigh he said, "There was a scandal with the project, though, and André got fired. Soon after, Dara left him, took Katherine with her and André fell apart. He started drinking heavily and, without his daughter, his life fell apart."
Joe looked at me and I fought to keep from throwing my hand over my mouth. There was purple fire in his eyes and I felt his anger. I already knew the story of André and I tried to smile at him.
I smelled burning flesh. Joe flashed in full armor fighting demons with a golden sword.
I gasped at the vision and brought my hand to my chest in shock feeling the key necklace, before I could stop the physical reaction. The necklace weighed heavily as did my heart. He would be fighting at my side soon.
Marie asked, "Are you okay, dear?"
Joe turned to look at his mother. He nodded and only said, "I never knew any of this."
Alfred continued, "I am sorry, son, but you asked for the truth. This is what I know. André was sleeping at the office and drinking all the time. He was supposed to give a presentation to a client and was drunk. He got into a scuffle with his boss and rumor has it, André punched him."
I feigned shock and said, "Oh my!"
Than is to blame. I don't know how I know or what happened but I vow to the Lord that I will make Than pay, thought Joe.
I choked and almost spit out my drink. I just heard Joe's thoughts! I had to set him straight and right away.
I cleared my throat and said awkwardly, "Joe, I think I left something in the car."
Joe looked at me with eyebrows raised. "Excuse me, we'll be right back," I said with a smile.
I walked outside and knew that Joe was right behind me. When I reached the car, I whirled and said in a stern tone, "Are you trying to get yourself killed?"
Joe stopped mid-step and said, "What are you talking about, Mary?"
I ran into his arms and whispered, "You cannot take on Than by yourself! I heard your thoughts in there. Now, I don't know how you know that it was Than who drove André to punching his boss but please promise me that you will not get revenge."
I paused to catch my breath and remembered what Gabriel told me. "Joe, in order to defeat the darkness and not become dark ourselves, we need to have a pure heart. We are filled with the Light and our motives must always be to speak the Truth and spread the Light."
Joe took several deep breaths while he held me. He stroked my hair and whispered, "I'm sorry, my angel. I didn't mean to frighten you and you are right. It was just a momentary thought."
I lifted my head and locked eyes with Joe. Tears filled my eyes but I was determined. I bit at my top lip and then whispered, "Promise me you won't put yourself in harm's way." Hot tears spilled down my cheeks.
Joe wiped at them and said in a deep, reassuring tone, "I promise, Mary. I promise I won't be a hothead and I won't be rash." Then, he laid his forehead on mine and whispered, "Please don't cry, darling. Please."
I nodded and whispered, "I would die if I lost you. Than will use you to try to get to me. You are my love, my everything." My voice cracked. "I would die if I lost you," I repeated.
Joe shook my shoulders a little and looked deep into my eyes. "Listen to me, Mary, you will never lose me! Do you hear me? I am by your side now and forever."
Overcome with emotion, Joe kissed me.
About the Author:
N. N. Light is the husband-wife writing team, commonly known as Mr. N and Mrs. N. Mrs. N. has been creating stories ever since she was little. Her grandfather remembers when she was two years old, she would stand at the top of the stairs and tell him a story filled with emotion (and in a language foreign to him) with her hands on her hips. Let’s just say she was a born storyteller.
They’re blissfully happy and love all things chocolate, books, music, movies, art, sports, trains, history, cooking and baking. Their mantra is to spread the Light.
Most of the time you can find them on Twitter or getting new ideas on how to spread the Light on Pinterest. They’re a proud member of ASMSG, Independent Author Network and Marketing for Romance Writers.
In addition to being authors, they’re also book promoters/reviewers, social media marketers/influencers and the owners of N. N. Light Author Promotions. They both love books, have ever since they were young. Matching up books and readers is something that gives them great pleasure.
100% of the proceeds of Princess of the Light go directly to food banks (US and Canada) in order to feed the hungry and help those in need. With only 7,500 books sold, N. N. Light will be able to set up a monthly endowment for the local food bank.
They’d love to connect with you either via email or via these various social media sites:

Friday, September 16, 2016

Books, Chocolate and Wine with Dawn Marie Hamilton

Good day! Thank you for dropping by ‘Books, Chocolate and Wine’ today. And, a big thank you to Ruth for having me as a guest on the blog.
1.       How did you come up with the idea for Just Wait For Me?
Just Wait For Me is the third novel in the Highland Gardens time travel series of stories rife with matchmaking faeries, a meddlesome brownie, and other fae creatures. Most of the stories take the reader on a journey from the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina to the early sixteenth century Scottish Highlands and back or vice versa. With Just Wait For Me, I wanted to do something slightly different. I was working on the initial outline while on a bicycling trip in West Virginia. One of the days, we had a heavy rain storm that kept us at our campsite for the better part of the day. There was a gnarly old tree there with a marred circle of bark that looked like a deformed face. I’d been reading about changelings—children believed to be an ill or misshapen faery child that had been left in place of a healthy human child stolen by the faeries. So, Jillian falls into a well while on a bicycling trip to West Virginia and travels back in time to where she meets a group of misshapen children discarded in the woods as changelings. And, if you read the book, the answer is yes. I came upon a rattlesnake on the side of the trail during my trip to West Virginia.
2.       How long did it take you to write Just Wait For Me?
I wrote Just Wait For Me over a two year stretch, putting it aside several times to work on other projects. The actual amount of writing time was probably about nine months. I write slowly.
3.       What was the most difficult aspect of writing Just Wait For Me?
With most of my books, I find writing the love scenes challenging. I want them to be enjoyable and non-offensive to readers, so I stress over each and every word.
4.       How much research did you conduct for Just Wait For Me?
Research is fun and I completed most of what was needed for Just Wait For Me before writing the first book in the series. That included researching locations both in the US and Scotland, Scottish and Gaelic history and culture, MacLachlan clan history, flora and fauna, faeries and other Highland mythology, etc. In the first book of the series, Just Beyond the Garden Gate, a fictitious place called the Caves of the Gray Women is introduced. In Just Wait For Me, I expanded upon the caves using inspiration from research of Smoo Cave in Durness, Scotland. I also needed to research cleft palates because one of the sweet children in the story has such an affliction.
5.       Why did you decide to write time travel and fantasy?
I enjoy writing what I like to read. My favorite romance books are time travel stories filled with love and fantasy elements.
6.       Do you use any techniques, tools, or aids to help you write?
I start with a general outline and then build a chapter storyboard using a large poster board and sticky notes. Each ongoing story thread and POV—point of view—character has a specific sticky note color. The sticky notes can be moved around as the story evolves.
7.       What books can we expect to see in the near future?
I recently began work on a novella for the Highland Gardens series, Just Within a Highland Mist, which is in its early stages. My hope is to release the Kindle ebook edition in January or February. Other editions to follow. I’m also working on the fourth novel for the series to release later in 2017—Just His Fae Kiss.
8.       Do you have an ebook reader? If so, which one?
The feel of a paper book in hand, especially a hard cover book is most enjoyable. That being said, I have an older Kindle DX with a larger screen, which I use during the editing process of my books, and a Kindle Fire used when traveling.
9.       Who’s on your auto-buy list for authors?
J. R. Ward, Terry Spear, Lynn Kurland, and many more
10.   If you could have one special, supernatural power, what would it be?
The ability to fly.
11.   What is your favorite film?
Somewhere in Time with Christopher Reeve and Jane Seymour—a wonderful love story.
12.   What is your favorite quote
The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it.”  ~Michelangelo
The third match in the Fae Queen's challenge is in play. Will fae magic change Stephen and Jillian's destiny?
In the chaotic aftermath of the battle of Flodden, an injured Highland warrior makes a vow to a twenty-first century lass cast back in time by a meddling, matchmaking faerie. Stephen MacEwen promises to find a way to send her forward to her own time. But is that an oath he'll want to keep after finding love in Jillian O'Donnell's arms? And after saving Stephen's life, will Jillian want to go?
No matter what the lovers decide, Stephen's wife—a woman who acquired the title through deceit—and an old enemy attempt to destroy the couple's chance for happiness. Only with the help of Fae allies can Stephen and Jillian overcome and earn their reward—everlasting love.
Excerpt:
 “Your recovery has been truly miraculous,” she said. “I’m becoming a believer in your fae healing magic.”
His quick grin was electric, and it sent a shiver of awareness through her body, culminating in the clenching of her sex. She stepped close to Stephen, placed a palm on his bare chest. The children were off to who knew where, and she was determined to take advantage of their absence. Jillian rolled onto the balls of her feet and planted a kiss on Stephen’s lips.
He stiffened, but then got with the program. The sword dropped with a clatter to the floor and his arms came around her in a crushing embrace. He repositioned his head and sought her tongue. The heady sensation curled her toes. She clutched his firm ass. God, he tasted good from the medicinal herbs the women made him eat. When the kiss ended they pressed their foreheads together and just breathed.
“Ach, lass, you make me want things I must not have.”
“What do you mean?” She leaned away. “I know we haven’t known each other long, but sometimes it only takes a moment to feel an undeniable attraction that might blossom into more. I feel that with you.”
He ran a hand through his overlong blond hair. “You are so sweet…”
“But…”
He opened his mouth, though before he provided an explanation a crashing noise came from the (cave) entrance. Stephen dove for the sword, and she swirled to face the opening.
Author Bio:
Dawn Marie Hamilton dares you to dream. She is a 2013 RWA® Golden Heart® Finalist who pens Scottish-inspired fantasy and paranormal romance. Some of her tales are rife with mischief-making faeries, brownies, and other fae creatures. More tormented souls—shape shifters, vampires, and maybe a zombie or two—stalk across the pages of other stories. When not writing, she’s cooking, gardening, or paddling the local creeks with her husband.

Author contact information (full URLs please):
Blog: http://dawnmariehamilton.blogspot.com/
Social Media Links:
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/dawnm_hamilton
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorDawnMarieHamilton
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/DawnMarieHamilton
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Dawn-Marie-Hamilton/e/B00CW1W742
Google+: http://bit.ly/Gplus-DawnMarieHamilton
Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/DawnM_Hamilton
BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/dawn-marie-hamilton

Email: author@dawnmariehamilton.com

Friday, September 9, 2016

Books, Chocolate and Wine with Mary Morgan

My guest today on Books, Chocolate and Wine is author Mary Morgan. She's answered ten provocative questions about her book, Dragon Knight's Ring and writing. She's included a great book trailer at the end of the post!

1. How did you come up with the idea for Dragon Knight’s Ring?
Dragon Knight’s Ring was the fifth and final book in my series, Order of the Dragon Knights. For several years, I didn’t know the identity of the fifth Dragon Knight. He suddenly appeared in the fourth book, and I remember shouting, “You’re the last Dragon Knight!” Each of my books has a central theme and at the core a relic for each of the Dragon Knights. I wanted to tie in the heroine and hero with something symbolic and thought Ring would fit. And it worked out fabulously!
2. How long did it take you to write Dragon Knight’s Ring?

Six months. Since this was the final book, I spent seven days a week pouring out my soul into this story.


3. How much research did you conduct for Dragon Knight’s Ring and what was the most interesting thing you did while conducting your research?

The hero, Adam MacFhearguis left Scotland and fought in the Crusades. I read and studied maps of the time-period, which were fascinating. Adam’s guest was to be a pilgrimage, but in the end, he found more bloodshed and violence. He returned home more scarred than when he left.  

4. Why did you decide to write paranormal romance?

I have a fascination with history, mythology, and fantasy. What better way than to combine them all and create my own world. 

5. When you are writing, who is in control? You or your characters?

I always think I’m the one in control, but once the writing starts—look out world. They (my characters) take over the story.

6. What advice do you have for other writers?

If you believe in your story, don’t let anyone discourage you. A dream is a wish your heart makes, so don’t give up! 

7. What books can we expect to see in the near future?

I’ve just wrapped everything on a holiday romance called, A Magical Highland Solstice. The hero is a secondary character from the Order of the Dragon Knights. I truly felt he needed his own story. It’s a time-travel romance, and I had so much fun writing this book. The cover is spectacular, and I should hear about a release date soon. 

8. What was the defining moment that you considered yourself an author?

This might sound strange, but when I received my first rejection letter. I shouted, “I’m acknowledged!” Of course, I cried for several moments, and then submitted to fifteen publishers that day. I wasn’t going to give up. I believed I was walking toward the right “fit” for a publisher.

9. What’s your favorite place in the world to visit?

Scotland! Take me home…

10. What is your favorite quote?

“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” –Eleanor Roosevelt


Death destroyed their love. Yet, can a trio of Fenian warriors roll back time to reunite two lost souls?

Crusader, Adam MacFhearguis is on one last quest to the standing stones in Scotland where he seeks to bury the past. However, a silent prayer sends him to an unknown future and to his beloved Meggie. When he uncovers a shocking revelation, Adam questions everything about the woman he thought he knew and loved. He may have traveled the veil of ages, but time is now his enemy.

Margaret MacKay lives a life in the future without the memories of her past—her death. When Adam arrives at her door confessing he knows her, she is confused and wary. With each passing day, she yearns to learn more from this stranger. Yet, when a truth is revealed, can she trust the man to unlock the chains from her mind and heart?

Will love free the bonds to unite the two lovers who were doomed centuries ago? Or will evil finally claim victory over the Dragon Knights?


Excerpt:

Meggie brushed her fingers over the leather pouch. “It feels empty.”

“Are you not tempted to take a wee look inside?”

She snatched her hand back. “I’m not peering inside the man’s belongings. As soon as he wakes, he and his horse can leave.” Giving the horse a firm pat, Meggie walked out of the stall and away from her smirking cousin—only to run smack into her other cousin, Lena.

“Blast,” snapped Meggie, grabbing her cousin by the arm to help steady them both. “Sorry, didn’t see ye,” Seeing the excitement in Lena’s eyes, she stepped back. “What?”

“I hear you have a Highlander in the guest room,” she replied, giving Meggie a wink. “Are you going to share?”

Meggie placed her hands on her hips. “He’s not my Highlander. Feel free to have him, though as soon as he wakes he’s gone from here.”

Lucas strode out of the stables, wiping his hand on a cloth. “I think I’ll go introduce myself, since I think this man bothers you. You keep stating he must leave as soon as he wakes.”

Lena pushed her cousin aside. “No, Lucas. I will go check on him.”

“Ye are both crazy,” protested Meggie. “He’s just a man.” Stepping past them both, she marched away from the stables.

Approaching the entrance of the castle, her nerves tingled and the air cooled. Halting on the gravel courtyard, she slowly glanced up at the guest bedroom window. Gazing down at her was the dark Highlander. His hands were braced on either side of the glass, and Meggie could swear for an instant, she recognized him from somewhere. A dream, perhaps? The look he gave her pierced her soul, and she shivered.

“Impossible,” she muttered. “I don’t dream. And ye are leaving now.”

Breaking from his stare, Meggie entered the castle, almost running up the stairs. By the time she reached the guest room, her hands were shaking. Not even bothering to knock, she pushed open the door and stormed inside.

Her mouth became dry, unable to form the words to order this giant out of her home. His bulk blocked the light from the window as he leaned against the ledge staring at her. She was not one prone to swoon at men—any man, but this one made her a jumbled mess. Moving to the table, she picked up his sword and took it over to him. His eyes widened as she approached and she fell into their dark blue depths. 

“I…um…” she stammered before continuing. “Ye should leave.” There, she got the words out.

Instead of reaching for his sword, the man lifted two fingers and caressed her cheek. She gasped, the touch searing her skin, and she took a step back. She could see the look of shock pass over his features, as if he felt the same reaction.

Meggie shoved the sword into his arms and ran for the door. Yet, when her hand touched the handle, she heard him speak.

“Dinnae leave me again, Meggie.”

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MORE ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Scottish paranormal romance author, Mary Morgan resides in Northern California, with her own knight in shining armor. However, during her travels to Scotland, England, and Ireland, she left a part of her soul in one of these countries and vows to return.

Mary's passion for books started at an early age along with an overactive imagination. She spent far too much time daydreaming and was told quite often to remove her head from the clouds. It wasn't until the closure of Borders Books where Mary worked that she found her true calling--writing romance. Now, the worlds she created in her mind are coming to life within her stories.

You can find more information about Mary Morgan here:

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Once Upon a Haunted Castle - Five Ghostly Stories

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Welcome to the Highlands and Islands of Scotland where ghosts inhabit haunted castles and can even help out forbidden lovers when they wish. Here are five original novellas from bestselling and award-winning authors Kathryn LeVeque, Eliza Knight, Terri Brisbin, Madeline Martin and Ruth A. Casie that will take you to some of their favorite castles to meet their favorite ghosts.
In Eliza Knight’s LAIRD OF SHADOWS, a decade old vow and an attack of Vikings brings Lady Elle Cam’béal to Dunstaffnage Castle seeking the help of the new, handsome, provocative laird with a beastly temper—Beiste MacDougall. As battles and treachery rain down upon them, Beiste and Elle find an unlikely ally in a ghost, and discover that a few stolen moments of passion can bring light from the shadows…
 In Kathryn Le Veque's DEEP INTO DARKNESS, Findlater Castle in the Scottish Highlands becomes a place of mystery and doom for Jamison Munro and his wife, Havilland. Traveling across the highlands one dark and stormy night, they stumble upon a lonely Host in Findlater Castle, a pathetic soul waiting for his wife to return to him. It is a terrible tale of a tragic love story that the Host tells the travelers but when Havilland becomes curious about mysterious tapping sounds that go on in the middle of the night, she soon realizes the danger that she and her husband are in. It becomes a race against time for Havilland to free a trapped spirit and save both their lives in the process.
 In Terri Brisbin’s UPON A MISTY SKYE, Alexander MacDonald and Isabel MacLeod were not supposed to meet or fall in love or marry. Now that they have, both of their parents plan to separate them, by any means possible. But the ghost of Duntulm Castle has other plans for the forbidden lovers and those who stand in the way of true love.
 In Madeline Martin’s A GHOSTLY TALE OF FORBIDDEN LOVE, Gavin MacDuff is a laird with a cruel and bitter aunt he’s sworn to protect. Senara is the new lady’s maid at Castle of Park and has sacrificed everything for the betterment of her family. Their paths tangle and lead to a road of hidden longing and secret passion – all of which is threatened by the power of one ghost who is fixed on revenge. 

In Ruth A. Casie’s THE MAXWELL GHOST, traitors, deception, murders and ghosts run rampant at Caerlaverock Castle. Jamie Collins, a man of reality not magic, serves Lord Herbert in exchange for his own farm.  Laura Reynolds, the Herbert's distant cousin comes to the castle to solve the murders and put the ghost to rest. The two, long-time friends find their destinies intertwined with hidden passions, but all is in jeopardy when Laura becomes the murderer’s next target. Jamie will find he needs some ghostly assistance to save Laura and declare his love.

Available for pre-order