Thursday, December 31, 2015

Sway Blog Tour ~ Excerpt & Giveaway!

Happy New Year, Everyone! I'm excited to be part of Sway Blog Tour! Today, Melanie Stanford is here with an excerpt of her new book Sway! I'm so happy to see a Persuasion retelling!


Thanks Candy for having me on your blog today!

So I’m obviously a huge PERSUASION fan, and writing a retelling was lots of fun. I have to admit, my first draft stuck really close to the original story, so I had to go back in and make the story more believable in the modern world, and make it more my own, which included slashing some characters (sorry Henrietta Musgrove, Charles Hayter, and Lady Dalrymple). You can see in the excerpt below though, that SWAY still has a big cast of characters. I had an especially fun time writing this scene where my main character Ava finds out who will be renting the family mansion. Hope you enjoy!


~*~*~

“So, I’ve got huge news which I’ve been dying to share,” Mari said, bouncing in her seat.

“You’re pregnant,” Beth said.

“You’re getting a divorce,” Aunt Rose said.

“You finally lost those last few pounds of baby weight,” Dad said.

Mari scowled at him. “Noooo.” She paused for dramatic effect. “Charlie found someone to rent Kellynch.”

Dad’s fork clattered onto his plate. His mouth opened but no words came out.

“Who is it?” Aunt Rose asked.
“It better not be some twenty-year-old bum who plays video games all day,” Dad said, “like that husband of yours.”

“Dad,” I warned.

“You know what? Never mind. Find someone yourself.” Mari pushed away from the table. “Some fifty-year-old bum who slathers lotion on himself all day.”

Mari!” I barked. Wow, things really hadn’t changed at all.

“Sit down, Mari,” Aunt Rose said, “and apologize to your father.”

For a moment, Mari just glared at Aunt Rose. I thought she would storm off, but instead she gave my dad a slow but graceful, “I’m sorry,” and returned to her seat.

I blinked. Maybe some things were different after all.

“Now, tell us about this renter,” Aunt Rose said.

Mari glanced at me. “It’s a couple in their forties. Married, no kids.”

Mari’s insult hadn’t fazed Dad at all. He seemed more shaken up about the possible renter. “Who are these people? What do they do for a living?”

Mari swallowed even though she had no food in her mouth. Her eyes darted to me again. “He’s a music producer. She’s a nurse.”

Something tickled at the back of my mind.

“Music producer? No. Absolutely not.” Dad jabbed his finger on the table with each word. “I’m not having some strung out hippie with long hair and tattered jeans living in my house. And a nurse?” He shuddered.

“Dad,” I objected. “You have no idea what he looks like.” Dad was the exact opposite of a hippie. Tall, handsome, dark brown hair lacking a single gray, few wrinkles, and always decked out in immaculate designer clothing. Never a thing out of place, like George Clooney.

Dad ignored me. “He probably chain smokes. Our handmade furniture, the curtains I bought in Greece, everything will reek of cigarettes.”

“Some music producers dress really nice and drive expensive cars and stuff,” Beth said. “I’ve seen it on reality TV.”

“Like that guy from that show,” Shelby said.

Dad’s expression brightened.

“He’s definitely handsome,” Mari said.
Dad gave a harrumph.
“From what Charlie says, he’s semi-retired now. They’re very well-off. They seem eager to settle in this neighborhood.”

“Well who wouldn’t?” Dad sliced his chicken a little too vigorously. “And Kellynch is the best house in the Hills.” His frown lessened. “What’s his name? Maybe I’ve heard of him.”

Mari hesitated, she glanced at me yet again. “Croft. Richard and Sophia Croft.”

Chicken caught in my throat. I coughed. I gagged. Tears sprang from my eyes.

“Someone hit her on the back,” Beth said with a sigh.
“Croft?” Aunt Rose repeated, trying to place the name.

Still coughing, I held up my hand to tell them I was fine. Not that anyone was rushing to my aid.

“Why does that name sound familiar?” Dad asked, tapping his fork against his lips.

I downed half a glass of water and gasped.

“Because Sophia Croft is the sister of…” Mari stopped and looked at me, as if waiting for my permission to say his name.

“Eric Wentworth,” I choked out. “Sophia Croft is Eric’s older sister.”

Every eye in the room zeroed in on me.

I fled the table and ran upstairs.

Tears stung at the corners of my eyes but I told myself not to cry as I flopped onto my bed, face-first.

Rolling over, I stared at the ceiling. It had been a long time since I’d cried over Eric Wentworth. It was second nature to squash all memories of him the moment they appeared. Like curtains covering an ugly view, I would use an imaginary hand to push the memory out of sight and back into the recesses of my mind.


Not this time. My heart pounded a painful beat. I couldn’t get him out of my head. The last time I saw him, the last look he gave me, still tortured my soul. Unable to stop it, I stretched my mind back further, to our beginning, rather than our end.




Blurb: 

She’d be happy to forget…if the past would just stop hitting “replay”. 

Ava Elliot never thought she’d become a couch surfer. But with a freshly minted—and worthless—degree from Julliard, and her dad squandering the family fortune, what choice does she have? 

Living with her old high school friends, though, has its own drawbacks. Especially when her ex-fiancĂ© Eric Wentworth drops back into her life. Eight years ago, she was too young, too scared of being poor, and too scared of her dad’s disapproval. Dumping him was a big mistake. 

In the most ironic of role reversals, Eric is rolling in musical success, and Ava’s starting at the bottom to build her career. Worse, every song Eric sings is an arrow aimed straight for her regrets. 

One encounter, one song too many, and Ava can’t go on like this. It’s time to tell Eric the truth, and make a choice. Finally, let go of the past, or risk her heart for a second chance with her first love. If he can forgive her…and she can forgive herself.  

Product Warnings 
Contains an actor whose kisses taste like chocolate, a pianist with scores of regret, and a sexy crooner who just wants his ex to cry him a river.


Buy: Amazon • Samhain Publishing
Add to Goodreads


FTC Disclaimer: Link to Amazon. I am an Amazon Associate. Should you purchase a copy of the book through the link provided, I will receive a small commission. Thanks! 

Author Bio: 

Melanie Stanford reads too much, plays music too loud, is sometimes dancing, and always daydreaming. She would also like her very own TARDIS, but only to travel to the past. She lives in Alberta, Canada with her husband, four kids, and ridiculous amounts of snow. You can find her on TwitterFacebook, and her website








* * * GIVEAWAY * * *

Melanie is giving away a signed copy of Sway! To enter, fill out the Rafflecopter below. Open Internationally!

  • This is a group blog tour giveaway.
  • One person will win one signed copy of Sway.
  • Open Internationally.
  • Last day to enter is January 12th.
  • For more stops on Sway Blog Tour click here.






a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thanks so much, Melanie, for being here today, sharing an excerpt, and for the giveaway!! I'm looking forward to reading a Persuasion retelling! Congratulations on the release of your debut novel!! Very exciting!

How about you? Are you excited about reading a Persuasion retelling? Let us know! 


Have a safe and fun New Year's Eve!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

What are you Reading? ~ Dec. 23, 2015


What are you Reading? is my weekly Wednesday meme! You are welcome to join me, just answer the following questions:


  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you plan on reading next?

What am I currently reading? I'm currently reading Winter (The Lunar Chronicles) by Marissa Meyer. I've just started, but I'm so excited to read this! 






What did I recently finish reading? I finished reading Lucky 13: Matchmaking and Misunderstandings by Cat Gardiner. 




I also read Alone with Mr. Darcy: A Pride & Prejudice Variation by Abigail Reynolds.

Both of these are Pride and Prejudice retellings, one modern and one regency. That's two more to add to my Austenesque TBR 2015 reading challenge. I need to read two more to complete the challenge!



What do I plan on reading next? I'm not sure. Hopefully, I can get a couple more Austenesque reads in! 



FTC Disclaimer: Link to Amazon. I am an Amazon Associate. Should you purchase a copy of the book through the link provided, I will receive a small commission. Thanks!

What are you reading? I'd love to hear!

Merry Christmas!  

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

What are you Reading? ~ December 9, 2015


What are you Reading? is my weekly Wednesday meme! You are welcome to join me, just answer the following questions:


  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you plan on reading next?


What am I currently reading? I'm currently reading Lucky 13: Matchmaking and Misunderstandings by Cat Gardiner. I've just started it, but it looks really cute and fun! It's a holiday, Pride and Prejudice, Romantic Comedy. 






What did I recently finish reading? Since my last What are you Reading? post (which I haven't been very good at posting!), I've finished three books: 

The Most Unsuitable Wife (The Kincaids Book 1) by Caroline Clemmons. 

Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin

Paper Towns by John Green

I enjoyed all three! 





What do I plan on reading next? I need to work on completing my challenges for this year, so I might read something for my Austenesque TBR Challenge. :) 

FTC Disclaimer: Links to Amazon. I am an Amazon Associate. Should you purchase a copy of the book through the link provided, I will receive a small commission. Thanks!

I also link up this post to Lipsyy Lost & Found. Check out her week in books! 

What are you reading? I'd love to hear!  

Monday, December 7, 2015

Shock Loss by J.W. Becton ~ My Review


Shock Loss (Southern Fraud Thriller #5) by J.W. Becton 

Publication Date: October 14th, 2015 
Publisher: Whiteley Press, LLC 
Pages: 248 
Received: E-copy from the author 
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars






I was so excited to hear that Shock Loss, the fifth book in the Southern Fraud Series was coming out that I read it soon after receiving it! I loved it! I so enjoy spending time with Julia and Vincent, that I'm going to be totally bummed when the series is over. 

Now, this series is a continuing series, but at the same time, there is a solved mystery in each book. The continuing aspect is more of a personal nature than business, i.e. Vincent and Julia's growing romance that leaves us wanting more! And a cold case involving the rape of Julia's sister. So, I would suggest you read them in order.  But things change a bit in Shock Loss, and we are left hanging at the end.

Julia and Vincent are in trouble! Each of them is being framed for a crime they didn't commit. At the same time, someone is trying to kill them. Looking back at past cases, Julia and Vincent try to figure out who's out to get them. There are so many people who could be holding a grudge against them that they can't trust anyone - not even the police.

I love Julia's neighbor and best friend, Helena. I love the relationship they have - running over for coffee, having girl talk, but also, the fact that Helena is a US Attorney is a huge help for Julia, and she is one of only a handful of people that Julia can trust. 

It was fun to see some of the characters from past books in this one too! As Julia tries to figure out who may be seeking their revenge on them. 

As always, I love the chemistry between Julia and Vincent! I'm so happy that they take their romance a few steps closer in this one! 

I really enjoyed Shock Loss! I think it might be my favorite of the series so far! I can't wait for the next and final book of the series!

FTC Disclaimer: I received an ARC e-copy of the story from the publisher via NetGalley for my honest review.

Buy: Amazon
Add to Goodreads

FTC Disclaimer: Link to Amazon. I am an Amazon Associate. Should you purchase a copy of the book through the link provided, I will receive a small commission. Thanks!


Connect with J.W. Becton



Any thoughts? I'd love to hear from you! 

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Month in Review ~ November 2015


Hey, everyone! November was a busy month for me! Our move went well, but it was so much work. The worst part was cleaning the rental we were in. Then Thanksgiving happened, so yeah, I'm late getting my Month in Review post done. And I've been totally lacking in posting my weekly What are you Reading? post. Anyhow, here's how my November reading went! 

Month in Review is a monthly meme hosted by Kathryn @ Book Date


Books Read:

Grave Mercy: His Fair Assassin, Book I (His Fair Assassin Trilogy 1) by Robin LaFevers
Fairest: The Lunar Chronicles: Levana's Story by Marissa Meyer
Mail-Order Holiday Brides: Home for Christmas\Snowflakes for Dry Creek (Love Inspired Historical) by Jillian Hart
Paper Towns by John Green



FTC Disclaimer: Links to Amazon. I am an Amazon Associate. Should you purchase a copy of the book through the link provided, I will receive a small commission. Thanks! 

Reviews:

No reviews posted this month.



Newly Purchased Books:

Winter (The Lunar Chronicles) by Marissa Meyer
Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin (November's Uppercase subscription box book)





Books gifted to me:

Denial of Conscience: A Modern Darcy and Elizabeth Adventure by Cat Gardiner
Sketching Character: A Jane Austen Inspired Novel by Pamela Lynne




Giveaways:


I had one giveaway this month.

Chiara L. won an e-copy of Longbourn's Songbird by Beau North!

Many thanks to Beau North, Meryton Press, and Jakki @ Leatherbound Reviews for having this giveaway with me!


FTC Disclaimer: Links to Amazon. I am an Amazon Associate. Should you purchase a copy of the book through the link provided, I will receive a small commission. Thanks! 


I'm slightly behind on my Goodreads reading challenge with seven more to read, and I'm four books from finishing my Austenesque TBR Challenge. Hopefully I'll be able to finish those! Fingers crossed! Seven books is more than I usually read in a month. The good news is that I've completed my Dystopian Reading Challenge and my TBR Reading Challenge! Yay! 

So, that's pretty much it. How are you doing? How are your challenges shaping up as we are coming to the end of the year? 

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Then Comes Winter Blog Tour ~ Guest Post with Sophia Rose + Giveaway!

Hey, Everyone! I'm delighted to be part of the Then Comes Winter Blog Tour! I'm super excited to have the lovely Sophia Rose as a guest today on So little time...  




Hello Candy and the readers of So Little Time...!

I am tickled to be here today for this stop on the tour while watching the flurries from my warm chair by the fire.  I’ve followed Candy’s blog for a few years now and enjoyed her posts and reviews.  I’ve added so many books to my TBR pile after reading her reviews.  #ReaderGirlProblems  Right?

Today I get to be on the other side and introduce you all to a darling cozy holiday short story anthology, Then Comes Winter, in which my own short story is featured.  Okay, well to be exact, I’m sharing a little snippet from my story to whet your appetites.  ;)

In my modern New Adult romance retelling of Northanger Abbey, I set my story, ‘North for the New Year’ at Lake Tahoe (California/Nevada) during the New Year’s.  My Mr. Henry Tilney and Miss Catherine Morland are updated to be Chris and Cate and like Miss Jane’s original pair these two begin their journey to love on the dance floor.
  
Enjoy a bit from their first meeting:

     Chris led them out to the hotel patio looking toward the lake. It was crisp and cold, but it felt refreshing after the stuffiness of the ballroom. He looked up at the starry night sky, breathed deeply of Tahoe’s clean air, and then looked at her.
     “You should know that you’re utterly irresistible when you stare at me like I’m the most devastatingly handsome man in the ballroom and give me such compliments on my dancing.”
     “Ha, ha. But I was speaking the truth…and besides you complimented me first by saying I was a good dancer.” Smirking, she said, “And you’re not devastatingly handsome. That’s Justin. You are, however, very charming.”
     Chris broke into a laugh.
     He darted a glance around and whispered, “It’s tradition to kiss at New Year’s, you know?”
     Grinning, he then leaned towards her slowly.
     “Glad you’re not one to buck tradition.” Cate rose up on her toes to meet his lips.
   

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

What are you Reading? ~ November 18, 2015


What are you Reading? is my weekly Wednesday meme! You are welcome to join me, just answer the following questions:



  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you plan on reading next?

Well, Wednesday's almost over, but I wanted to get this posted. It's been another busy day, but I'm happy to say things or finally getting organized after our big move! Yay! And I'm loving the new house! I haven't posted a What are you Reading? post since before we move, so here's what I've read since then:

What am I currently reading? I am currently reading Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin. I'm only a chapter or two into it, but it's good so far. It does creep me out a bit to even imagine that Hilter won the war!! This was the book that came in my Uppercase YA novel subscription box this month. It was my first box, and I was totally happy with this month's selection! It was one I was interested in reading, so that's good!
What did I recently finish reading? I finished reading Grave Mercy: His Fair Assassin, Book I by Robin LaFevers. It was really good! I read this during the move, but I wish I had waited until later. I was so tired that I was having trouble engaging in the story.  I could never stay awake long enough to get absorbed into it. 

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Longbourn's Songbird Blog Tour ~ Excerpt + Giveaway!

Hey, Everyone! I'm delighted to be part of the Longbourn's Songbird Blog Tour! This book sounds fantastic! I'm totally looking forward to reading it! Today, Beau North has a lovely excerpt for you to read, and at the bottom of the post you'll have a chance to enter to win a copy of Longbourn's Songbird






First, I’d like to give bottomless and heartfelt thanks to everyone at So Little Time… for being a part of my blog tour and I can’t wait to get into further discussion with you all! Now, a little setup for this excerpt. I thought since this is my first excerpt in my first blog tour for my first novel, we would start with...well, first impressions. Without giving too much away, I can tell you that at this point in the story our Mr. Darcy has already encountered Elizabeth Bennet, though she is not aware of it. Enjoy! 


Excerpt


“Ladies, it’s wonderful to meet you all. This is my friend Will Darcy.” Darcy felt something like a smile on his face, superficially polite over his clenched teeth.

Bingley joked, making the women titter. “He’s not normally so talkative.” The sound of her chuckle was like being poked between the eyes. Darcy forced his face into a smooth expression, silently cursing his friend. He murmured a terse “good evening” to the women.

The mother examined him keenly for a moment as if she were inspecting a piece of meat from the butcher. After a moment, she sniffed haughtily as though dismissing him. Darcy paid her no mind, turning his attention to the other Bennet girls.

The younger of the girls, he dismissed immediately; she was pretty but didn’t shine like the others. He allowed himself to look at her. Elizabeth. The name suits her, he thought. She smiled happily at Bingley, but when her eyes turned to him, he could see the spark of laughter in them—and something else underneath, something questioning.

She wasn’t as pretty as Jane, but in a way she was far more beautiful. Jane’s beauty was soft and genteel, whereas there was a natural wildness to Elizabeth’s looks, particularly in the intelligent expression of her dark eyes. They were like two pools of liquid ink, full of secret mysteries waiting to be explored, discovered.

A man could drown in those eyes.

Her eyebrow arched ever so slightly as if she had heard his thought. She played with her necklace, a locket of some kind. The gleam of the gold chain against her neck drove him to distraction. Again and again, he found his gaze drawn to the dip at the base of her throat.

Suddenly, she smiled at him, taking him aback. It was a smile of pure mischief, wicked without being lewd. No woman had ever smiled at him in such a way. And he was unsure he liked it. He looked to Bingley for help, only to find that Bingley and Jane were on the dance floor. Mrs. Bennet had wandered off, leaving Darcy with the other two girls.

“We’ve all been on tenterhooks for your arrival, Mr. Darcy,” Elizabeth said in a low, melodious voice. To her credit, the younger sister gave her a scandalized look.

“Oh?” Darcy croaked. The sound of her mouth shaping his name affected him in a way he had never expected. An inexplicable, cold tension clawed up from the bottom of his stomach, tightening his throat, making it difficult to speak. Get a hold of yourself, man!

“Oh yes,” she said in mock seriousness. “We’ve heard so very much about you already. Tell me, how does a man manage the climb down from Mount Olympus these days?”

Darcy scowled. This had Caroline’s fingerprints all over it. It certainly was not the first time Caroline Bingley had put him in the situation of appearing to be more than simply her brother’s cantankerous friend. That Caroline should gossip about him was bad manners enough, but that this sassy miss should tease him openly...

Elizabeth tilted her head slightly, studying him with the same easy look of amusement. The spill of her dark hair distracted him, and his fingers itched to caress one of those glossy curls. He cleared his throat. “I assure you, Miss Bennet; whatever you may have heard, I am just a mortal man.”


Book Blurb:

“Someday some lark is gonna spell you with a song, Will Darcy. She’ll call you with music and you’ll be as good as lost.” 

In the autumn of 1948, young millionaire Will Darcy comes to the sleepy, backwater town of Meryton, South Carolina to visit his best friend, Charles Bingley. When Darcy becomes enchanted by a local beauty with a heavenly voice, his business dealings with Longbourn Farms may close the door to his romantic hopes before they are given a chance to thrive.

Still healing from heartbreak, Elizabeth Bennet takes solace in her family, home, and the tight-knit community of Meryton. That foundation is shaken when Will Darcy makes a successful offer to buy the family farm. Blinded by hurt, will Elizabeth miss the chance to find in him the peace and comfort her heart truly needs? 

Confronting the racial, economic, and social inequalities of the times, Longbourn’s Songbird is an imaginative romance inspired by Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice and told through the lens of postwar America, a story layered with betrayal and loss, love and letting go.


Buy: Amazon
Add to Goodreads

FTC Disclaimer: Link to Amazon. I am an Amazon Associate. Should you purchase a copy of the book through the link provided, I will receive a small commission. Thanks!


About the Author



Beau North is a native southerner who now calls Portland, Oregon home with her husband and two cats. She attended the University of South Carolina where she began a lifelong obsession with English Literature. In her spare time, Beau is the brains behind Rhymes With Nerdy, an internet collective focused on pop culture. This is her first novel. 



Connect with Beau North



Longbourn’s Songbird blog tour schedule

11/9: Guest Post & Giveaway at My Jane Austen Book Club
11/10: Excerpt & Giveaway at So Little Time…
11/11: Guest Post & Giveaway at Laughing with Lizzie
11/12: Review at Half Agony, Half Hope
11/13: Review at Margie’s Must Reads
11/14: Excerpt at My Love for Jane Austen
11/15: Review at Liz’s Reading Life
11/16: Guest Post & Giveaway at Austenesque Reviews
11/17: Excerpt & Giveaway at Best Sellers and Best Stellars
11/18: Excerpt & Giveaway at Romance Novel Giveaways
11/19: Review at Savvy Verse & Wit
11/20: Author Interview at Lost in Asgard
11/21: Review at Babblings of a Bookworm
11/22: Guest Post & Giveaway at From Pemberley to Milton 
11/23: Review at Diary of an Eccentric


Many thanks to Jakki at Leatherbound Reviews for organizing this Blog Tour and to Meryton Press for the giveaway below!

Congratulations to Beau North on the release of Longbourn's Songbird!! Thanks so much for being a guest on So little time...!


* * * GIVEAWAY * * *

It's giveaway time!! Meryton Press is giving away one e-copy of Longbourn's Songbird to one lucky winner! To enter, just fill in the Rafflecopter below and leave a comment!

  • One person will win an E-copy of Longbourn's Songbird.
  • Open Internationally.
  • Last day to enter: November 17, 2015, midnight PT.




a Rafflecopter giveaway


Remember, to enter the giveaway you MUST fill out the Rafflecopter (shown above) and leave a comment below. If you need help entering, email me by clicking on the email icon at the top of the sidebar. Thanks and good luck! :)

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Then Comes Winter ~ Cover Reveal!

Hello, Friends! Today I'm excited to be part of the cover reveal for a new anthology being published by Meryton Press! If you recall, a while back I posted about a Holiday Romance Short Story Contest, well, seven of the stories in this anthology are from the winners of that contest! You can find the winners and runners up here. Congratulations! How exciting for them! 

Without further ado, here is the cover!




Then Comes Winter

“Then comes Winter, with bluster and snow, that brings to our cheeks the ruddy glow…” Gertrude Tooley Buckingham, The Four Seasons

If you long for a toasty snuggle on a cold winter’s night, this compilation of original short stories inspired by the magic of the holiday season—and more than a nod to Jane Austen—was fancied as a sublime wintertime treat. On the heels of the summer anthology, Sun-kissed: Effusions of Summer, and in concert with some of Meryton Press’s most popular authors, this romantic anthology introduces several more promising writers. With a robust mix of contemporary and Regency musings, Next Comes Winter, rekindles passionate fires with equal wit, wonder, and romance. 

Edited by Christina Boyd


Authors: Beau North & Brooke West, Melanie Stanford, Natalie Richards, Erin Lopez, Sophia Rose, Anngela Schroeder, Suzan Lauder, Maureen Lenker, Denise Stout, Linda Gonschior, and Lory Lilian

I wish Christina Boyd and all the authors the best with the release of this new book! It sounds lovely! 

Then Comes Winter will be released very soon so keep a watch out for it!! 

Any thoughts? Your comments are always welcome!
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