Friday, November 1, 2013

The Romance Reviews Year-End Splash Party!

It's time for The Romance Reviews Year-End Splash Party! This month-long extravaganza has more than 400 participating authors and publishers means more than 400 prizes to be won! This includes a grand prize of a $100 gift card! (All winners will be notified at the end of the event.)  

My prize is an Authorgraphed (signed by me) Kindle copy of my newest Enchanted Skye

Follow this link to The Romance Reviews site and look for my name on the participant list. Then, scroll down to my question and choose an answer from the multiple choice.

Enchanted Skye is based upon some actual Selkie lore from the British Isles.  

Here's the story:

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Setting the stage: In this scene, Alex has seen a stranger crying beside the tidal pool and realizes she's been scattering ashes there. He's compelled to discover who she is. If anyone is likely to know who the pretty stranger is, it's Alex's sister Bea.

Contest Excerpt:

At twenty-three, black-haired, amber-eyed Beatrix MacCodrum was as beautiful as the rest of her kind. She was also a born homemaker, as the Selkie legends foretold. A Selkie woman would keep a lovely home if a man were lucky enough to find and wed one. No doubt this was true for Beatrix, though as yet unwed, she never lacked hopeful suitors.

Their mother had passed a little more than two years ago and their broken-hearted father preferred the sea to work through his grief. Though they did see him on occasion and were expecting him home for the holidays, last they heard he was living with the Roans on the Isle of Mann. It was only the four of them now in the big house, and called between the sea and land like they were, her brothers came and went.

But not Bea. She’d been caught in a herring net as a child and it nearly killed her. Restless or not, since that incident, Bea preferred the land. She’d decided to turn the manor house into a bed and breakfast, and when she approached her brothers they gave her their blessing. As long as each retained his own quarters while she catered to the tourist trade.

Space wasn’t an issue. There were plenty of rooms for guests in the centuries-old house. Nor was the extra income needed. A cache of Spanish gold had seen to their comfort for centuries and there was always more where that came from. More than one riches-laden galleon went down off the coast, and there was something to be said for the ability to dive to the ocean floor on a single breath. Beatrix didn’t embark on the project to earn a living, she simply enjoyed being an innkeeper but more importantly, adapting to the various needs of her guests fed her restless spirit.

Alex joined Bea in the kitchen, where she was slicing a loaf of just-baked bread. “That was quick,” she said. He was staring at the bread. She shook her head. “I suppose I’ll give you a piece before you start droolin’ on the floor.”

“The smell of baking called me. That looks delicious, Bea. Nobody bakes bread like you.”

She laughed. “Ha! Anything cooked would look good after a month of nothing but raw crabs and fish. I could bake a shoe and you’d want it.”

He laughed. “That’s true enough. But then, sis, no one can bake a sole like you either.”

Rolling her eyes at his play on words, she flung a loaf end at him. “Devil. You’re lookin’ like a scarecrow. Didn’t you eat when you were out?”

He caught the bit and promptly ate it. “Like you said, nothing but crabs and fish gets old quickly. I’ll be staying with cooked meat and vegetables for a while.”

She tipped her head toward the oven. “Good. I just put a roast in.”

“Uncle Angus and the Reverend Osmond were there holding service at water’s edge at the lighthouse,” Alex said. “I was wondering why. It looked to me they were scattering ashes on the water. I noticed a young woman there keening.”

Though no true relative of theirs, Angus MacLeod had been their grandfather’s best friend and therefore was as close as family. Bea nodded. “I’ve heard uncle’s sister Mary Margaret was laid to rest today. She lived in the States for years. Meri said Angus wished he’d been able to see his sister one last time. They’d planned it, aye? But she took sick suddenly and went like that.” Bea snapped her fingers. “The poor thing. Poor old uncle is devastated. You know, they talked all the time. By phone and by letter. He’s going to miss her.”

“Poor uncle,” Alex said and shook his head sadly. He sipped his tea. “The woman with them is a relative, ye suppose?”

Noting the feigned nonchalance in the question, Bea lit with interest. Of her three brothers, it was Alexander the middle who’d yet to have serious relationship. She could almost hear her mother say, “Laddie, you’re too much like your father. One day a woman will steal your heart and you won’t know what hit you.”

Bea put a butter-slathered slice of bread on Alex’s plate and went fishing with a little information as bait. “I heard Mary Margaret’s granddaughter brought the ashes over. From Chicago, she is.”

“Huh. Chicago? Will she be staying?”

Bea took a sip of tea. Naturally empathetic, she was able to read people like an open book and her brothers were no exception. She was reading Alex now. “I hear that’s what uncle wants.”

Does the lass have a name, then? Alex didn’t verbalize the question. If they chose, Selkies could read one another’s thoughts on land or in water.

Bea looked at the ceiling, as if the answer lay somewhere above. “Her name is Jenna, Jenna MacLeod.”

Alex smiled. “Jenna MacLeod. That’s odd, no? Wasn’t uncle’s sister named Ross? Wouldn’t her son’s daughter also be Ross?”

“Hmm. I don’t know,” Bea said. “Maybe she had cause to change it.”


~*~


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~*~

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2 comments:

  1. Impressive publicity! I hope this blog hop proves very successful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :) Thanks. I really like the TRR parties. My multiple choice question comes at the end of the month.

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