Tag: Paranormal Romance

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Dark Wine At the Grave

April 19, 2022 by in category Apples & Oranges by Marianne H. Donley, Spotlight tagged as , , ,

Jenna Barwin

A Hill Vampire Novel

Hidden Depths Publishing

April 19, 2022

About the Book

Henry never thought he’d turn someone vampire. Especially someone who wasn’t his mate…

With fang fever driving him, he can’t resist the town council when they ask him to turn Christine, the Hill’s new attorney.

Their exclusive vampire community needs her legal skills.

Henry’s fiancée is supportive. After all, a Lux angel can’t be turned vampire, and Cerissa knows how important creating his first child is to him.

But when everything goes wrong, it puts Cerissa in the cross hairs of an enemy she didn’t see coming.

Henry is desperate to save his mate. Because if he doesn’t, Cerissa might be forced to leave the town—and Henry—forever.

About the Author

Jenna writes the Hill Vampire novels, which blend mystery, wine, and romance into a heady combination.

Beginning with Dark Wine at Midnight, her paranormal romance series is available on Amazon and in Kindle Unlimited.

When not writing, she enjoys photographing denizens of the sea, and is known to occasionally attend a Victorian dance in full regalia right down to pantaloons and a hoop skirt.

To learn more about the Jenna and the books she writes, visit: jennabarwin.com

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Into the Lair of Paranormal Author, Lisa Kessler

December 2, 2021 by in category Writing tagged as

Lisa Kessler is a Best Selling author of passionate, page-turning paranormal fiction. She’s a two-time San Diego Book Award winner for Best Published Fantasy-Sci-fi-Horror and Best Published Romance. Her books have also won the PRISM award, the Award of Excellence, the National Excellence in Romantic Fiction Award, the Award of Merit from the Holt Medallion, and an International Digital Award for Best Paranormal.

Her short stories have been published in print anthologies and magazines, and her vampire story, Immortal Beloved, was a finalist for a Bram Stoker award.

When she’s not writing, Lisa is a professional vocalist, and has performed with San Diego Opera as well as other musical theater companies in San Diego.

You can learn more at http://Lisa-Kessler.com

Were here today with the fabulous, multi-talented author Lisa Kessler. Her award winning paranormal books have received wonderful reviews and are highly recommended by her readers. Let’s get a look into her lair!!

Jann: When did you decide to be a writer? Why paranormal romance?

Lisa: Music was my first love. I actually performed in operas and musicals and had a few callbacks to sing Disney voices, but I always wrote every night just for fun. During a trip to New Orleans for work, I got a palm reading and at the end, she asked me if I was a writer. I was quick to say no, but then I added that I did enjoy writing, but it was just for fun.

She smiled and told me I was going to be a famous writer someday. I was boggled to say the least, but I also couldn’t stop thinking about it and wondered if I really could write a book… Six months later my first draft of Night Walker was finished! She changed my life that day!

I’ve always written paranormal and horror because those are the genres I love to read.

Jann: A Winters Wish, your holiday fantasy romance novella made its debut in November as a part of the Tinsel, Wings and Fur: A Fae Worlds Holiday Storybook, with authors Linda Thomas-Sundstrom and PJ Mellor and now it’s a solo release with a never-before published epilogue. How did the anthology come about?

Lisa: My friend, Linda Thomas-Sundstrom invited me to be a part of the fae holiday anthology and I was eager to get back into my Summerland Stories so I was happy to team up with Linda and PJ.

Jann: Which character did you develop first in A Winters Wish—Darren Slater or Abriette? Tell us about their story and how they get their HEA?

Lisa: Abriette was first. My previous Summerland Stories novellas featured fae princesses and this time I wanted a warrior. So Abriette is a warrior elf for the Winter Realm. Since it was happening at Christmastime, I figured an elf that crossed the veil would be assumed to be one of Santa’s Elves.

That led me to Darren, a down and out songwriter in Los Angeles. He doesn’t have enough money to make his rent and he’s forced to make some extra money by being a mall Santa.

Seeing him fall for a real elf was magical, and I hope their story brings a little magic into the reader’s holiday season too.

Jann: Your Sedona Pack series is fabulous!! Book 8 in the series, Sedona Sanctuary, came out in October of this year. You write such amazing characters. What major conflicts do you have your leading characters, Miller Sloan and Rayne Lowry work through?

Lisa: Thanks so much! The Sedona Pack series evolved in an unexpected direction. Sedona Sanctuary hadn’t been on the series list, and I hadn’t been planning to give Miller Sloan a book! Book 8 was going to be Sedona Sentinel (Deacon’s book) but in Book 5 (Sedona Sacrifice) Miller Sloan was a side character and during one scene his backstory started to unfold. I realized this retired general had a story to tell. So suddenly I was writing my first silver fox werewolf!

Miller had to work through a lot of self-loathing for his past decisions and his road to redemption was rocky, plus I paired him up with a more free-spirited, newly retired FBI profiler made for lots of sparks and tension. Sedona Sanctuary was really a pleasure to write. I loved giving an older, battered hero a happily ever after!

Jann: How many books do you have planned for the Sedona Pack series?

Lisa: There will be 9 books. I’m working on the final installment, Sedona Salvation, right now. It’ll wrap up the series when it debuts in February 2022.

Jann: Do you find yourself returning to certain themes in your stories? What? Why?

Lisa: Most of my series involve “found family”. Characters who have been loners or lost or abandoned find a circle of friends who become family. I’m pretty sure I can trace that back to being an “only child”. We lived in the country too, so no playing on a cul-de-sac with friends for me. I spent lots of time playing make-believe all alone and I often imagined being from a large family that would have my back no matter what. I find many of my books carry that theme. Belonging, being loved, and even when they disagree, there’s always someone ready to stand at your side no matter what.

Jann: When did you develop an interest in tarot and oracle cards? I understand that you do readings.

Lisa: I’ve been interested I them since I was a teen, but I didn’t really connect with reading them until about 15 years ago. I’ve been reading tarot professionally for about 8 years. It’s a huge passion for me!

Jann: I see you have an upcoming Tarot for Writers online class available next year. What can you tell us about the class?

Lisa: It’s a four-week online class through zoom on Tuesday nights. I take everyone through all 78 cards with a focus on ways each card could impact characters and scenes. At the end, I share some different card spreads for character building and scenes. The cards work for both plotters and pantsers and you don’t have to know anything about tarot either. It’s very interactive, and inspiring for creative ideas. I love working with writers to teach them to use tarot cards to help them connect with their writer intuition. It brings my two passions together! ?

You can find out more on my website: http://www.authorlisakessler.com/online-classes-book-coaching/

Jann: Are you still doing your Book Lights podcasts?

Lisa: Yes! Book Lights is live on Mondays at 1pm eastern/10am pacific every week. I get to chat with writers from all genres and backgrounds. You can find the podcast under the Readers Entertainment Radio umbrella on all podcasting sites.

Jann: You’re a professional vocalist. Are you still performing?

Lisa: I am! I actually recorded two audio CDs before I ever got my first book published! I gave up being in operas and musicals once I started signing book contracts. The rehearsal time took too many hours away from writing, but I still had my church job singing every week until the COVID lock down. Since then, things have been virtual, so I haven’t performed live since March of 2020.

Jann: Do you have a website, blog, twitter where fans might read more about you and your books?

Yes! I’m just about everywhere and I love to talk books!

Website – http://Lisa-Kessler.com

Amazon – https://www.amazon.com/Lisa-Kessler/e/B003V5RYVO/

Facebook – http://facebook.com/LisaKesslerWriter

Twitter – http://twitter.com/LdyDisney

TikTok – https://vm.tiktok.com/TTPd2F3oLk/

Goodreads – http://goodreads.com/LisaKessler

Instagram – http://instagram.com/LdyDisney

Pinterest – http://pinterest.com/LdyDisney

Author Newsletter – https://goo.gl/56lDla

Follow Me on BookBub – https://www.bookbub.com/authors/lisa-kessler

Facebook Reader Group – https://www.facebook.com/groups/LisaKesslerNightAngels

Jann: What’s your favorite movie?

Lisa: Rocky! It was the first movie I ever saw that the hero didn’t win the battle/fight and it didn’t matter. Going the distance, getting up after being knocked down, that was the message, and I was hooked. Life didn’t have to be a competition. It was the journey. It takes heart and lots of it.

I have a signed movie poster of Rocky in my writing space. The tagline: His whole life was a million-to-one shot… has always reflected how I felt about my writing career. I’m so lucky and so blessed to get to share stories with readers from all over the world. I haven’t hit a list…yet, but someday? I’m definitely going the distance!  Okay I promise no more lines from Rocky… for now!

Lisa, thank you for sharing with us a bit of your world. Wishing you the best for this holiday season!!

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Author Spotlight: Jennifer D. Bokal

October 29, 2021 by in category Apples & Oranges by Marianne H. Donley, Spotlight tagged as , , , ,

Today we are happy to spotlight Jennifer D. Bokal. Jennifer has a new release, AS ABOVE SO BELOW, featuring a witch, a vampire hunter, and a vampire lurking in the woods—just in time for Halloween. You can learn more about Jennifer on her website, Smart, sexy romance for smart, sexy women.

Jennifer D. Bokal penned her first book at age eight. An early lover of the written word, she decided to follow her passion and become a full-time writer. From then on, she didn’t look back.

She earned a master of arts in creative writing from Wilkes University and became a member of the Romance Writers of America and International Thriller Writers. She has authored several short stories, novellas and poems. Winner of the Sexy Scribbler in 2015, Jennifer is the author of the Ancient World Historical series the Champions of Rome and the Harlequin Romantic Suspense series, Rocky Mountain Justice and the connected series, Rocky Mountain Justice: Wyoming Nights. She is also the author of Coltons Secret History, Book 3 in the Coltons of Kansas series and Coltons Internal Affair, Book 9 in the Coltons of Grave Gulch series—also from Harlequin Romantic Suspense.

Happily married to her own Alpha Male for more than 25 years, she enjoys writing stories that explore the wonders of love. Jen and her manly husband live in upstate New York with their three beautiful daughters, two very spoiled dogs, and a kitten that aspires to one day become a Chihuahua.


Jennifer D. Bokal

Halloween, Romance, Paranormal
Wild Rose Press
October 2021
ISBN: 9781509239986

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About the book

 A search for information about his grandfather’s mysterious death leads Army physician, Carter Balan, to the town of Ancient Oaks.

Fiona Moon has a secret. Her magical abilities have been fading since her 40th birthday and with Halloween only a week away, the witch fears that her powers are gone for good.

When Carter walks into her bookshop, Fiona knows exactly who he is—the first boy she ever kissed. Carter has no memory of Fiona or the fact he comes from a long line of vampire hunters. When a vampire is discovered in the woods, Fiona and Carter must work together to destroy the creature. Can Carter recover his stolen memories before it’s too late?

Will he accept his family history and pick up where his grandfather left off?

Can Fiona find a way to harness her powers and save the town?

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Snow Dust and Boneshine Book Tour and Excerpt

April 8, 2021 by in category Apples & Oranges by Marianne H. Donley, Rabt Book Tours tagged as , , , , ,



The Chronicles of Granny Witch (Book 1)

Paranormal Romance, Historical Fantasy,

Magical Realism, Visionary Fiction

Date Published: December 27, 2020


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Once upon a winter’s night, a lost cowboy finds himself in Purgatory Bend.
Patrick Doolin is plagued by a wound that won’t heal, but winter is the
season of miracles. As Patrick wanders through Wyoming, he meets Fawna
Darling, the mysterious granny witch, who channels the folk magic of her

With nowhere to go and a secret Patrick doesn’t yet understand, he seeks
shelter with Fawna in the snowswept prairie. Forbidden to fall in love, they
form an eternal bond in the dreamscape, but when the bluebirds sing of
summer and threaten their empire of dreams, they are faced with an
impossible decision. Will Patrick stay in the land of the living, or will he
cross over the prairie?

Summer is the season of surprises, and Fawna’s childhood sweetheart, Dezi
Ketchum, longs to win her heart too. When winter melts across the gold-slick
prairie, Fawna searches for answers under the rose moon. Caught between fire
and water and flesh and fantasy, she follows her heart and ventures into
uncharted territory.



Praise for Snow Dust and Boneshine


“A warm and spellbinding tale…Soleil’s writing flows like a stream,
relaxing and exotic. Mixed with folk magic, simpler times and beliefs, this
is a wonderful escape.” ~ Tome Tender

“Soleil’s writing is riveting…It’s much more than a fantasy – it’s a
story of love and faith.” ~ Literary Titan

“Curl up under your blanket, grab a cup of tea, and let yourself wander
between magic and reality in Purgatory Bend…Snow Dust and Boneshine is one
of the sweetest, selfless, heartbreaking but also heartwarming love stories
I have ever read…The characters, the atmosphere, and the imagery are done
so beautifully. Every description made me sink my teeth into the story just
a little bit more.” ~ Snez at Book Lifey & A Quintillion Reads Book

“Snow Dust and Boneshine was incredible…There’s romance, intrigue and lots
of magic. It’s very well written, so much so, I could feel the cold and
bitter wind as I read about it. The characters are beautifully written, and
I could see it playing out as a movie as I read. I highly recommend picking
this one up. 5 stars all the way.” ~ Angela Scavone, Author of Celebrity

“This story was magical and fascinating with an element of surprise. It was
well-researched and beautifully thought out to bring us so many amazing
details. If witches and love stories set in a small town with a sprinkle of
magic interests you, I would urge you to read this.” ~ Kriti Dalmia at This
Reader Girl




 About the Author





Grendolyn Peach Soleil was born in the Appalachian Mountains on a full
moon. She is an old soul and a folk magic fiend. Grendolyn loves twisted
fairy tales, all things vintage, tales of true love, and creature features.
Some of her fancies include pumpkins, black cats, mermaids, tea parties,
cowboys, dahlias, and sunsets. She is a member of the Visionary Fiction
Alliance and The Independent Author Network. Grendolyn is the author of
Limbo Jubilee, The Mermaids Melt at Dawn, and Snow Dust and Boneshine: The Chronicles of Granny Witch (Book 1).




Contact Links







Purchase Link




RABT Book Tours & PR


Snow Dust and Boneshine

Grendolyn Peach Soleil

Prologue: Angel Creek

Wolf Moon, 1854

Patrick Doolin hid behind a sunbaked boulder, his bare ribs sticking to the sagebrush. He grabbed the wet, mushy hole in his belly, his heart pounding, his ears ringing raw. Around the bend, there were howling beasts in the canyon, sniffing his blood trail. Trapped in the crossfire, he closed his eyes and pretended it was all a bad dream. He cloaked himself in a cloud of dust and prayed for invisibility. Patrick didn’t know whether to beg for his life or submit to death’s sting, but instinctively, his body forced him to gasp for air.

From the moment he boarded the ship last summer, he regretted leaving Ireland. He missed the sheep-strewn pastures and the soggy sea cliffs. He missed the rolling fog and the taste of coddle by firelight. By the grace of God, Patrick survived the great hunger, and despite its brutal aftermath, he still yearned for his motherland, for fairy trees and cloud cover. It was better to be hungry at home than stuffed to the gills with strangers.

Patrick’s father suffered the most during the great hunger, so when a fever ravaged him last February, he was too weak to recover. Although Patrick bowed his head and prayed every morning, his father was skin and bones by Easter. Worst of all, his father’s spirit was troubled by Patrick’s black-hearted brother, Liam, so Patrick made a deathbed promise to his father. He vowed to look after Liam come hell or high water.

As soon as their father rattled his last breath, Liam set his sights on California. After the wake, the Doolin brothers boarded a ship to Philadelphia. From there, they made the long trek to Dakota territory. It took them three months to reach their uncle’s homestead, and by the time they arrived, old man winter was already there. The Doolin brothers agreed to work for their uncle until the following summer and then make their way to California, but after Christmas, Liam didn’t want to wait any longer.

Patrick knew they were late to the gold rush. Their uncle showed them the newspapers and implored them to stay in Dakota. He said it was treacherous to travel in the dead of winter, but there was no reasoning with Liam, so the Doolin brothers saddled up and battled the pelting ice and blowing snow. They slept under giant fir trees, their fingers and toes tingling with frostbite. They hadn’t been on the trail for long when Liam started a gunfight with a goliath of a cowboy, then disappeared into thin air.

Now, Patrick was all by himself, stranded somewhere between Dakota and Wyoming. Utterly disoriented, he clutched his belly in agony and stumbled through the wilderness. He meditated on the pine trees as they swirled into a blur of whistling green. Patrick saw trains and ships in the shadows. He saw the sea cliffs of Ireland in his dreams. When he couldn’t take another step, he collapsed on the edge of Angel Creek, his wounded body glinting red with sunburn, his sticky blood mingling with the cold stream.

As he faded in and out of mortality, he saw a young woman with hair as black as a raven. A pack of wolves surrounded her and swaddled her porcelain skin with their ashen fur. Patrick couldn’t get a good look at her face, but he caught a glimpse of her scarlet lips. She was nothing more than a stranger to him, but he took comfort in watching her dance through the shimmering snowfields. As he stood there in the frozen prairie, held captive by the bone-chilling wind, he felt strangely warm as though a hearth was glowing inside him.

The next morning, an old cowboy named Charlie was fishing for salmon when he came across Patrick’s body floating belly-up in the creek. Charlie took Patrick for dead, but as he got closer, he witnessed pulse and breath. Charlie rubbed his eyes in disbelief. He figured there was a reason this poor man was still alive, so he slung Patrick over his shoulder and lugged him for half a mile, dabbing his sweaty face with a red bandana. When he got back to his wagon, he plopped Patrick down next to the salmon and gave him a ride to Purgatory Bend.

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The Dirty Difference Between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy by Rachel Hailey

February 8, 2021 by in category Apples & Oranges by Marianne H. Donley, Guest Posts, Rabt Book Tours tagged as , , , , ,

Today we have a guest post from Rachel Hailey. Rachel was born and raised in the South. She’s all about that nerd life and in between writing she’s dedicated herself to raising the next generation of nerds. If she’s not online or staring at a book she can usually be found at the local game store rolling dice, shuffling cards, or planning her next cosplay.

Her childhood was most prominently shaped by the works of R.L. Stine, Stephen King, Anne Rice and the Brothers Grimm.

The Dirty Difference Between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy

Rachel Hailey

I’ve been in love with monsters since I was a little and got angry when Belle turned the Beast into a boring old prince. As I grew older and more obsessed with fairy tales, I found two genres that truly spoke to my black heart. Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance.

These powerhouses rose to popularity fast during the late ’90s, and early 2000s. Those years exploded with amazing stories of dazzling monsters. Jim Butcher and Laurell K. Hamilton were among the first and are still synonymous with Urban Fantasy. But around the time Anita was toying with the notion of staking Jean-Claude, Sherrilyn McQueen (Kenyon) introduced us to Acheron and his band of tortured but scorching hot daimon slayers. While Harry rides an undead dino, J.R. Ward first showed us the wicked streets of Caldwell where the Black Dagger Brotherhood protects their race against the Lessening Society.

Anyone who has read a good Paranormal Romance or Urban Fantasy will agree that there is magic in the ink. But what is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy? Both include the same elements: mystery, action, adventure, supernatural, and yes, sexy times.

So what are the differences?

All four of these series feature creatures that don’t just lurk in the shadows – they’re at home in the dark. The stories bleed tension, and the only thing higher than the number of pages are the body counts.

With so many similarities, it’s the technical details that define which side of the aisle a book gets shelved.

One of the easiest difference to spot is Point of View. Black Dagger Brotherhood and other Paranormal Romance stories are usually told in third-person, giving readers the full experience by switching perspectives among many characters. Urban Fantasy authors, such as Hamilton and Butcher, rely on first-person, fully immersing readers in the heads and hearts of their protagonists.

As Paranormal Romance series unfolds, they often maintain this same energy with each book centering on a new couple, while in Urban Fantasy a single protagonist continues to shine center stage, no matter how many books follow.

The next difference can be a little tricky to identify. Paranormal Romance are more character-driven. It’s the emotions, the development of the characters, and their relationships that keep us turning pages. The relationships are the main focus. The tension comes from the need to see a couple (or more!) handle their issues and find their happily ever after.

Urban Fantasy, on the other hand, are plot-driven. Investigating the murder, solving the case, saving the world are the defining moments for these tales. That’s not to say relationships aren’t important in Urban Fantasy. Usually, they provide much-needed motivation for the protagonist to get off their ass and do their job or save the world, pushing them to be better, stronger, harder.

This brings us to my next point. Sex. The pages of Paranormal Romance blister fingers and leave readers dry-mouthed, but so too can Urban Fantasy. Usually, the scenes are shorter, less descriptive. The relationships form slowly over books and culminate in a scene that begins scorching and ends with a closed door. (Damn you doors.)

But these rules are often shattered with impunity which continues to leave readers a little confused. Anita arguably has more sex in one book than the entire cast of the Dark Hunter universe, and it’s twice as graphic. There’s also the matter of POV. Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series is told in first person and focuses on the same characters through all seven (wonderful) books. The Night Huntress series is also heavily plot-centric but undeniably falls into the realm of Paranormal Romance.

So what is the difference?

My answer?


I’ve heard Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy referred to as cousins, but I disagree. I think they’re much closer than that, and deciding where they are listed comes down to opinion.

There’s an ugly side to this – The great disdain the Romance genres garner even within the publishing community. (Which makes no sense as it is the highest-grossing genre. Don’t believe me? Google is free.) Often this contempt leaves agents and authors slapping Fantasy on a book instead of Romance to appeal to a wider audience.

It starts with the cover. They replace the image of the muscled hero with a detailed, gritty image of the heroine holding a blade as she scowls fiercely into the night. I was told recently this was because Urban Fantasy readers are so much choosier about art. But are they really, or is this just another stereotype rooted in the belief that romance readers and authors are somehow less than?

In the end, it doesn’t matter where a book is shelved, or whether the cover has a half-naked man. Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance stories speak to some of the darkest corners of the human soul. Whether you read for the action or the action, remember, genres are labels, and like all labels, they can help or hinder. Don’t be afraid to cross the aisle and reach for a new author. What you find may surprise you.

Rachel Hailey’s Dark Paranormal Romance

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