First Kiss Friday with guest Amy Quinton


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It’s First Kiss Friday and it’s always a great day when I can introduce one of my fellow Bluestocking Belles. Please help me welcome Amy Quinton who will be sharing the first kiss scene from her novella The Umbrella Chronicles: John and Emma’s Story in our upcoming box set Valentines From Bath. Happy reading and enjoy!


 In this scene, our hero, Dr. John Edward Hartwell, has caught a flash of light from outside as he meanders through the first-floor drawing room. He strolls over to the window and watches with disbelieving eyes as a person dances beneath the stars around the open flames of a fire, with what appears to be an umbrella in her hand. Alone. Then, suddenly his mystery woman reaches over and throws something on the fire.

A few moments later, John finds himself beneath the stars, standing just outside the circle of light, no more able to reckon her reasoning there than from inside the drawing room.

Emma, it seems, is burning some ferns and dancing and swaying and darting clockwise around a small fire, a black umbrella in her hand.

Our scene begins here with John asking our heroine, Emma:

“What are you doing?”

She didn’t stop her twirling as she replied, “Don’t say it.”

He held his hands in surrender, though she couldn’t very well see him and asked, “Say what?”

“That I’m crazy.”

He chuckled. “Wouldn’t dream of it.”

She spun again. “If you must know, King Charles I believed this worked.” She gestured at the fire as she rocked back and forth before spinning once again. “That burning ferns would invite rain.” She stopped as she drew before him, breathless from her dancing. “In fact, he believed in it so strongly that when he travelled, he often banned the use of burning ferns in any town he visited for the duration of his stay.”

He crossed her arms. “Fascinating.” He wasn’t sure if he should believe her, but that didn’t mean he wasn’t infinitely captivated.

She grinned and grabbed hold of his hands, attempting to twirl him into a dance. “Honestly.”

And oddly enough, he allowed her. They spun as they circled the fire; he stiff, his muscles unused to dancing; she fluid in her movements as if she danced every day. The warmth of her hands cast a spell over him, and he was helpless to resist her command.

He nodded at the umbrella, clasped between their joined hands. “But why do you wish it to rain?”

She shrugged and almost seemed to shy away. “The better to keep you here?”

He nearly stumbled. Instead, he risked a peek at the stars, twinkling down on them from the clear skies above. “It’s been clear for days and not likely to rain any time soon.”

When he looked at her again, she shrugged. “We shall see.”

“Emma.” They slowed to a stop. “Why?” He reached out and looped that persistently loose curl behind her ear. As he’d been wanting to do for days. Had he been able to see, he would have repinned it and dared it to defy him.

It was as silky as he’d imagined it would be.

Softly, he continued. “Why do you wish me to stay? Why me?”

She reached up and ran her hand down his cheek. “Because you’re perfect. For me.”

He shook his head and laughed, remembering their morning walk of several days ago. “But we are nothing alike.”

Now, it was her turn to shake her head. “Haven’t you heard? When two people making up a couple are exactly alike, one of them is redundant.”

Before he could reply, he felt a drop of water splash down on his cheek, and he glanced around to note that a light drizzle had begun to fall around them. Eyes wide with disbelief, he glanced at the fire, the sky, the umbrella, and then Emma herself as another drop landed squarely on her lips, the water sparkling in the light of the sputtering fire. She withdrew the Umbrella from their clasped hands and opened it, carefully, almost reverently. Then, he being taller, he took it from her, holding it over the both of them, protecting them from the damp. They were cocooned now, alone, as the rest of the world was washed away with the rain. Or perhaps it was the umbrella, keeping the safe. Drawing them together.

They each stepped closer to the other. The fire died. Darkness enveloped them, which was a fine thing, for water dotted his lenses, and he no longer had a flannel with which to clean them.

Rather than worry over it, he dipped his head and drew near her, unerringly finding her lips in the dark. Ah, God. Finally.

It was pure heaven. Shewas pure heaven. Just as he’d been imagining. For days.

With his free hand, he wrapped his arm around her and clasped her to him, and she allowed it, willingly pressed against him. She ran her hands through his hair, and for the first time ever, he was disorderly, mussed. In a public place, no less. And he relished every single minute of it.

Her lips tasted like sunshine and warmth. Comfort. And home. He could die in her arms and be content that this was the best possible way to leave this earthly plane.

He didn’t know what sort of magic she possessed, but it was truly potent.

And he didn’t mind.

He dove into a deeper kiss, tossing time and Oxford and appearances to the wind.

Tomorrow… tomorrow he would remember why they could never be.

Valentines From Bath releases February 9th
Preorder now for $0.99

 The Umbrella Chronicles Blurb:

 England, 1815…

Dr. John Edward Hartwell is pathologically tidy and set in his ways—a more serious-minded man never existed.

But in his ways, lies misery.

Enter Miss Annie Merryweather—a woman as lovely as she is chaotic. She is the perfect compliment to our man of numbers and logic, bringing sunshine and superstition to thwart his future of certain wretchedness.

And now that she is convinced they are destined to be together—the signs, you see—no one can stand in her way, for she is as tenacious and optimistic as she is beautiful.

Will their hearts find common ground this Valentine’s Day? 

Buy Links:

Amazon US:



Historical Romance Author, Mother of Boys, American Wife of an Englishman, Crafter, Reader, Camper, Bluestocking Belle

Amy Quinton is an author and full time mom living in Summerville, SC. She enjoys writing (and reading!) sexy, historical romances. She lives with her husband, two boys, and three cats. In her spare time, she likes to go camping, hiking, and canoeing/kayaking… And did she mention reading? When she’s not reading or traveling, she likes to make jewelry, sew, knit, and crochet (Yay for Ravelry!).

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First Kiss Friday with Keta Diablo & a Giveaway!


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Welcome, my lovelies, to another First Kiss Friday! Today’s guest is Keta Diablo who heating things up with her novel Decadent Deceptions. Be sure to read to the end to learn about Keta’s giveaway opportunity and happy reading.


In all honesty, this is Olivia and Morgan’s second kiss. The first one occurred ten years prior and was more like a peck on the lips. In this scene, Morgan has made arrangements for Olivia to visit an elegant brothel in Savannah so she may choose a husband with experience in the bedchamber. Since he’s in love with Olivia, he could kick himself for agreeing to help her in this regard. Morgan finds Olivia in the garden and informs her he’s made arrangements for this coming Friday. She offers to pay him for his trouble.


“Oh no you don’t, dear friend. I can’t allow you to pay for my shameless inquisitiveness.”

Dear friend? Wielding a dull knife to cut out his heart and serve it à la friteuse would have sufficed. “Is that what you call it? Your inquisitiveness? I thought it fell more along the lines of depravity, Olivia.”

Green eyes narrowed. “You don’t approve after all?”

With another wave of his hand, he forged ahead. “Forget it, doesn’t matter whether I approve or not. I gave my word to your brother I’d see it through to the end whether or not you’re shocked out of your pristine bloomers.”

Her delicate chin tilted up. “I assure you, I’ve seen it all.”

“Is that so? Where?”

“Books. You do remember my father has an extensive library, including a vast collection of nude pictorials…French and Italian.”

With a sick knot in his stomach, he met her gaze. “One hundred dollars.”


“It costs one hundred dollars to observe.”

“That’s exorbitant! What does it cost to—?”

“Less than it costs to engage in voyeurism and that should be of little significance since you don’t plan to offer yourself up as a fille de joie.” He paused and raked her over head-to-toe. “Or do you?”

“Of course not!” She stomped an indignant foot and in the next breath asked, “What did you call them?”

“A prostitute.”

“Yes, I know, but did you use a French term?”

He could have kicked himself for overlooking her uncanny perception, and why did he get the feeling pistons and pulleys were working overtime in that pretty little head as she scrutinized him? “About the money….”

“I’ll have it with me on Friday, Morgan.”

Her curious eyes warned him another question from that kissable mouth struggled for release. “What? You’ll burst if you don’t spit out whatever cockamamiethought occupies your meddlesome—”

Another gasp elicited a half-snort from him.

“Very well, perhaps meddlesome was unfair. How about analytical?”

“Oh, you’re impossible. I merely wanted to know if they, that is, the people in the room will know I’m watching them.”

“Do you want them to?”

She clutched her throat. “Of course not, but I can’t help but wonder if that is an option for some.”

“It is, but that will cost another fifty dollars.” He studied her. “Should I arrange that too?”

“No, no, thank you. I’d prefer to—”

“Spy on people while they’re rutting.”

A strange sound spewed from her throat, but like the Olivia he knew, she recovered quickly. With a bold step forward, she threw her arms about his neck and kissed him, without warning, without pretense. His head swam. Christ, those sweet, sensual lips melded into his as if they had done so a thousand times in the past. In reality, it had only been once—ten years ago, a lifetime ago. She clung to him and pressed her firm, ripe body against his. His fingers splayed and tangled in her wild mane of hair as he drew her deeper into the kiss.

On and on it went, her sweet breath mingling with his, their tongues entwined. Amid the little soft moans from the back of her throat, his resolve disintegrated and the kiss reached a demanding plateau. Still she did nothing to stop him. Overcome by an irresistible urge to feel her beneath him, he backed her toward the bench, intent on taking her here, now, on that hard, cold surface or on the ground, he didn’t care which. The rigid length of his cock pulsated between them. More than anything in the world, he wanted to shove it into her…into every orifice imaginable.

The soft echo of a woman’s voice filtered through the labyrinth of trellises and twisted vines. “Liv, darling, where are you?”

Olivia jerked from his arms and staggered back, her voice hoarse. “Oh, forgive me, I shouldn’t have—”


“Here, Lark, near the roses.” She buffed her lips with her fingers and then straightened her dress. “You must leave.” She pointed toward a narrow path. “Please, Morgan, Lark will suspect something if she sees you.”

Caught up in the moment, he took her chin in his hand with a vague awareness of a robin’s twill overhead, the rustle of nearby branches, and the scattered gravel crunching beneath someone’s feet. “The next time you start something with me, Olivia Breedlove, be prepared to have it finished.”

Decadent Deceptions by Keta Diablo

Historical Erotic Romance/Suspense
* 35 ‘Five’ Star Reviews
* RWA Molly Contest Finalist (Erotica category)
* Red Carpet Review Top Award Nominee

About the novel:

Determined to win Morgan Gatewood’s love, Olivia Breedlove lures the decadent man into a game of cat and mouse. What began as a ploy to force him to commit, tumbles into a world rife with voyeurism, sin and murder. Morgan must not only beat Olivia at her own game but stay one step ahead of the scheming vixen once the serial killer has her in his sights.

Enter L’ Amour Immortelles, an affluent brothel, where no one is who they claim to be, and no one is safe. Enter the world of Decadent Deceptions where the hunted becomes the hunter to save the woman he loves.

This novel is scorchingly hot and includes scenes of bondage.

There is a HEA and no cliffhangers.

Available On All Venues

About the Author:

Keta Diablo lives in the Midwest part of the United States on six acres of gorgeous woodland. When she isn’t writing or gardening she loves to commune with nature. A pair of barn owls returns to the property every year to birth their young and show them off in the high branches of the oak trees. Nothing more adorable than these white fluffy babies with heart-shaped faces. A lifelong animal lover, Keta devotes her time and support to the local animal shelter. Emma LaPounce, a rescued feline, has been her furry companion for the last ten years.

Keta is an award-winning and best-selling author who writes in several genres: Western Romance, Historical Romance, Paranormal Romance and Contemporary Romance. In a past life, she wrote Gay Romance. Her books have received numerous accolades, including RWA contest finalist, Authors After Dark finalist, Top Pick of the Month and Recommended Review from top review sites, and Best Romance Finalist from The Independent Author Network.

Ps: For some strange reason, ghosts often show up in her stories.

Thank you so much for following me on the Net:

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Leave Keta a comment to be in the running for a $10 Amazon gift card. We’ll leave this giveaway open through the weekend when a random comment will be generated as the winner. Good luck!



Valentines From Bath available for pre-order


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I’m super excited to show you the cover for the next Bluestocking Belles box set, Valentines From Bath, available now for pre-order for just $0.99 with a release date of February 9th. Isn’t the cover just gorgeous? I just know you’re going to love these stories so read on to learn more about the set.

In five original stories, Jessica Cale, Sherry Ewing, Jude Knight, Amy Quinton, and Caroline Warfield bring you Valentines From Bath

The Master of Ceremonies announces a great ball to be held on Valentine’s Day in the Upper Assembly Rooms of Bath.

Ladies of the highest rank—and some who wish they were—scheme, prepare, and compete to make best use of the opportunity.

Dukes, earls, tradesmen, and the occasional charlatan are alert to the possibilities as the event draws nigh.

But anything can happen in the magic of music and candlelight as couples dance, flirt, and open themselves to romantic possibilities. Problems and conflict may just fade away at a Valentine’s Day Ball.

Buy Links:

Amazon USiBooks | Kobo | Nook | Smashwords

Beauty and the Bounder

Beauty and the Bounder, by Jessica Cale. He’s a liar and a fortune-hunter… and exactly what she needs.

The moment Lady Emilia sets eyes on the Chevalier d’Aubusson, she knows their fates are tied together. For good or ill, she cannot say. A mysterious aristocrat with a tragic past, the chevalier makes waves with his considerable charm.

But the chevalier is not as he seems. There are cracks in his story, and Emilia never could resist a mystery. Whether he’s a gentleman or a bounder, he might just be the man for her.

The Earl Takes a Wife

The Earl Takes a Wife, by Sherry Ewing. It began with a memory, etched in the heart.

Lady Celia Lacey is too young for a husband, especially man-about-town Lord Adrian de Courtenay. But when she meets him at a house party, she falls in love.

Adrian finds the appealing innocent impossible to forget, though she is barely out of the schoolroom and a relative by marriage.

His sister’s deceptions bring them together, but destroys their happiness. Can they reach past the hurt to the love that still burns?

The Beast Next Door

The Beast Next Door, by Jude Knight. In all the assemblies and parties, no-one Charis met could ever match the beast next door.

Charis Fishingham has always felt more at home at Eastwood—Beastwood, as the neighbours called it, after the flawed child who once lived there. In the Eastwood gardens, Charis can escape her mother’s expectations, her sisters’ chatter, and her own worries about her future. There, she reads and remembers her secret friend, long gone into exile to have his birthmarks removed at his family’s command.

Now the Beast has returned. Eric Lord Wayford would rather face the surgeons of Naples and Napoleon’s armies than the tongues of the ton. He joyfully greets Charis, and their future looks to be full of hope.

But someone does not wish Charis to wed the Beast of Beastwood, and will stop at nothing to keep them apart.

The Umbrella Chronicles: John and Emma’s Story

The Umbrella Chronicles: John and Emma’s Story, by Amy Quinton. A serious-minded, scientific man of learning seeks a complex and chaotic practitioner of all things superstitious who will upend his well-ordered life.

The Umbrella Strikes Again! Another Bachelor Has Fallen!

England, 1815…

Dr. John Edward Hartwell needs assistance, though not quite the kind of help he might think. True, he is well-organized, tidy, and pathologically set in his ways—a more serious-minded man one might never find.

But in his ways, I have determined, lies misery.

Enter Miss Emma Merryweather—a woman who is as lovely as she is chaotic. She is the perfect candidate to compliment our man of numbers and logical focus, bringing sunshine and superstition to redirect him away from a future of certain wretchedness.

And now that she has been categorically convinced that they are destined to be together—the signs, you see—no one can stand in her way, for she is as tenacious and optimistic as she is beautiful.

And none can resist her smile.

If I have anything to say about matters, and I always have something to say about matters, the signs will point the way.

They already have.

Lady Harriett Ross,

Self-proclaimed Motley Meddler * Mistress of Destiny * Wielder of the Infamous Umbrella

I’m just an old woman with opinions. On everything.

Candles in the Dark

Candles in the Dark, by Caroline Warfield. Doug Marsh and his candles bring light to many, none more than Esther.  They may light the Assembly Rooms even as his love lights her life.

Doug Marsh knew what the army expected of him. Invalided out, he struggles to run his uncle’s candle-works and look after those dependent on it. A contract with the Bath Assembly Rooms would go a long way toward succeeding at both of those things. The plight of a young woman is a distraction he doesn’t need.

Esther Hopkins, formerly ‘the Honorable’, has no time to mourn the life denied her by a single mistake. A woman alone with a new-born son to raise needs work, and she is determined to make it on her own. If only she could stop yearning for the sturdy arms and kind blue eyes of the man who rescued her from starvation and enlisted the entire Marsh Candle Works to her support. But Sergeant Marsh shows nothing but benevolent interest in her welfare. Why should he care for a fallen woman?

In the normal course of things Esther is far above Doug’s touch. Can he find the courage to court her and still take care of business at the same time?

First Kiss Friday with Elizabeth Ellen Carter


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Not only is it First Kiss Friday but today we’re going to celebrate Elizabeth Ellen Carter’s new release, Live and Let Spy! Isn’t the cover just gorgeous? We hope you enjoy this excerpt and the first kiss scene! Happy reading, my lovelies!


He got as far as three yards away when Olivia Collins called out to him. “She’s not there, Mr. Hardacre. You won’t find her interred at Ponsnowyth.”

He span about. “What the hell?”

The profanity was out of his mouth before he could censor himself – too much time at sea and not enough time in drawing rooms – yet the woman in front of him did not seem disconcerted in the slightest. Rather, he saw in her the righteous anger of an avenging angel.

At that moment, Olivia Collins was beautiful.

“Her father, in his deference to his own reputation,” she continued, contempt clear in her voice, “refused to accept charge of her mortal remains. He also refused to let anyone else in the family aid her. There was an aunt, I believe, with whom Constance was close.”

The recollection of Squire Denton’s own grave marker in the church cemetery – the large and ornate marble headstone boasting his status to the world – lit the spark of Adam’s anger.

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye are like unto whited sepulchers, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.

He gave vent to a volcanic rise of fury. “That vicious old bastardcondemned his only daughter to a pauper’s grave?”

Tears sprang once more to the woman’s eyes.

Before he knew what he was about, Adam had advanced and has his arms around Olivia, holding her close as she wept into his chest. The force of her emotion, not his, touched something deep in his soul. A desire to protect, to comfort, reached in and took hold. For a moment, with the scent of honeysuckle in his nostrils and the gentle curves of a woman in his arms, Adam embraced, and accepted the embrace, of both Olivia Collins andConstance Denton.

When he closed his eyes, Constance’s face finally appeared before him as though only twenty minutes, not twenty years had passed. He rained kisses in her hair, grateful someone as wonderful and beautiful as she would ever give him the time of day, let alone her body. Having once touched her, he wanted – needed – that feeling again. He kissed her with increasing passion.

Adam tasted a protest on her lips at his last open-mouthed kiss.

He stopped and opened his eyes. The lips did not belong to Constance.

Olivia pulled out of his arms, eyes wide with alarm and hand across her mouth, her neatly pinned chignon in disarray with one long lock tumbling down her shoulder. And, in a split second before she had raised the hand to her mouth, he had seen her lips, full and red with the force of his. To his shame, Adam felt his body stir.

He took a few paces back to protect himself as well as her.

“That was unforgivable. Miss Collins, Olivia, I…” He tried to fashion the words for an apology. He had none.

“That was unforgivable,” he repeated. “I’m sorry…”

Here’s the blurb:

Refused his rightful promotion, Adam Hardacre quits the Royal Navy in disgust and is quickly approached with an intriguing proposition to serve his country undercover.

His first assignment takes him home to Cornwall to expose traitors plotting a French invasion of England. There, he meets newly unemployed governess, Olivia Collins, who has stumbled upon a hidden secret from Adam’s past – his youthful summer love affair with the local squire’s daughter. It is a tragic history that brings Adam and Olivia closer than is wise.
However, with the attraction deepening to something more, neither realize that Olivia unwittingly holds the key to his mission.

As Adam infiltrates the plot, Olivia finds out the shocking truth behind his lost love’s death many years ago, and both their lives are in danger. But their growing relationship is clouded by suspicion. Who can and cannot be trusted – anyone or no one?

Or… even each other?

Here is the buy links:
US –
CA –
UK –


Elizabeth Ellen Carter is an award-winning historical romance writer who pens richly detailed historical romantic adventures. A former newspaper journalist, Carter ran an award-winning PR agency for 12 years. The author lives in Australia with her husband and two cats.

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Happy New Year!


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Happy New Year, my lovelies! From my family to yours, I wish you a prosperous new year filled with family, friends, and love!

And to help you ring in the New Year and, for a limited time, I’ve put my entire Knights of Berwyck series on sale for only $0.99 each. That’s hours upon hours of reading pleasure right at your fingertips. Already have them? Then give them as a gift and share the love!

You can find buy links here on my website and at online retailers here:

Amazon US:
Barnes & Noble:

Amazon Australia:
Amazon Brazil:
Amazon Canada:
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Amazon India:
Amazon Italy:
Amazon Japan:
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Amazon UK:

Medieval Monday ~ and the winner is…


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Thanks to everyone who participated in our Medieval Monday hop! I sincerely appreciate everyone who left me comments. I’ve combined all the names and a random comment was generated as the winner of an eCopy of To Follow My Heart. And the winner is: Sherry Otis!

Congratulations Sherry! Please email me at so I can get your information in order to send you an eCopy of To Follow My Heart.

Be sure to follow my blog or on social media so you can keep up to date with Medieval Monday, First Kiss Friday, or when I have a new release. I sincerely appreciate everyone’s support and wish you a prosperous New Year!

Medieval Monday with Sherry Ewing & a giveaway~


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Welcome to the last post for this themes Medieval Monday and Merry Christmas. Because we’re ending our hop with my blog, I’m bending the snippet rule and bit and give you a whole excerpt from To Follow My Heart: The Knights of Berwyck: A Quest Through Time, Book Three. I hope Santa is good to everyone this year. Be sure to read to the end and leave me a comment to be in the running for an eBook of my novel. Happy reading and enjoy, my lovelies!


Fletcher reached for a bowl and brought it forward for her inspection. He generally did not care for them, since they tended to be overcooked and eaten by the serfs. She crinkled her nose and it took everything on his part not to laugh. He did not wish to cause her insult. “Perchance, we must needs find you something else. What else could we tempt you with to please your palate?”


Now it was his turn to be confused. He in no way knew what she was talking about. “My lady?”

“You know… greens… leafy food?” she asked before getting a crestfallen expression on her face as though all of Christendom thought her a fool. He continued to look at her, wondering if the bump on her head had addled her wits.

Afore he could respond, a servant came and brought another platter to place in front of Katherine. Said lady took some of what had been offered and motioned for the dish to be passed down the table. Jenna’s eyes lit up at what she espied, although Fletcher thought there was not much to be said for what should in truth be sent to the stables for his horse.

“You see,” she exclaimed in delight, “salad. Thanks, Katie!” She took a bite and sighed with such pleasure that Fletcher had to grin. She apparently saw him watching her and held the plate towards him. “I’m sorry, how rude of me. Would you like some?”

His hands automatically came up almost in horror. “Nay, I shall refrain, my lady.”

Jenna shrugged her shoulders. “More for me and Katie it seems,” she declared, passing the platter back towards Katherine.

He was not alone in his assessment of those leafy greensbeing good for one’s stomach, for even Riordan appeared appalled when he handed the platter to his wife. Katherine let out a muffled laugh, holding out her utensil to her husband. “You don’t know what you’re missing, hon, until you try it,” Katherine said, teasing him. “Come on, take a bite!”

“Nay, my love, I must decline, but, by all means, enjoy,” Riorden replied, shutting his mouth in a firm line whilst his wife moved the offending greens in front of him.

Feeling full, Fletcher at last sat back in his chair as the evening meal concluded and serfs began to busily clean the hall. The tables, which had been filled with garrison knights, had emptied of men ’til but a few remained in the hall. Dristan called to those at the high table to join him in his solar, allowing Fletcher to once more escort Jenna across the room and up the stairs. She halted once they reached only the second landing.

“Can we take a breather for a second? My head seems to be spinning,” Jenna asked with hopeful eyes.

“Aye, of course we can. You must needs take all the time you require,” Fletcher answered and watched as the rest of the party continued their climb to the next level of the keep.

“I’m sorry to be such a bother. You don’t need to stay. I can find my way in a few minutes, after I rest.”

“I will not hear of it, my lady. I must say your speech is passing strange and is sometimes hard for me to follow,” Fletcher said, holding her elbow to steady her.

Jenna looked up at him, searching his face. “And yours is very formal. Nobody speaks like that where I come from. It’s a shame really. I miss the days of old when…”

She paused. Her brows furrowed as though she were trying to remember something. “Is something amiss, Lady Jenna?”

“That’s just it… I was on the beach, wishing for the bygone days, and… well… now… here I am. It’s all very confusing,” she answered and put a shaking hand up to her forehead. “I really am here in the past, aren’t I?”

A smile lit his face. “From my perspective, you are in the present, and apparently Timefeels you need to be here.”

“Time… it seems too farfetched to be believed. I’ll pinch myself later because I’m sure I’m dreaming this whole damn thing.”

They continued their climb ’til they reached the floor housing his bed chamber, or rather hers, since she had taken up residence there. Somehow, he liked the idea of her resting in his bed, although where those thoughts came from he was not sure. He barely knew the woman.

But you should get to know her…” Rolf’s voice came inside his head, giving him pause to search the corridor in front of them. There was no sign of the pesky ghost in order for Fletcher to berate him to mind his own business. Apparently, Rolf could also read the disturbing thoughts going on inside his head, since Fletcher now heard him laughing.

He witnessed Jenna sway, but he swore he could see a vague impression of a ghostly figure giving her a slight push in his direction. She stumbled forward, and Fletcher quickly pulled her to him. Startled, a gasp escaped her lips. Jenna placed her hands upon his chest and stared at him with wide eyes. Tingling sensations pulsed beneath his tunic where her palms were firmly resting on his torso. He knew he should let go of her, but instead, his own hands automatically went to her waist and stayed there. She did not move, not even one inch, and he watched her chest rise and fall almost as if she, too, was attempting to catch her breath. He knew there was no longer air in his own lungs. It had all but left him with her nearness.

To Follow My Heart:
The Knights of Berwyck, A Quest Through Time (Book 3)


Love is a leap. Sometimes you need to jump…

After a gut wrenching break up with her fiancé, Jenna Sinclair heads to the coast to do a little soul searching. To say everything is subject to change is putting it mildly. Her world is not only turned upside down, but pretty much torn asunder when she is pulled through a time gate on the beach beneath the Cliff House and transported more than eight hundred years into the past.

Fletcher Monroe, captain of the garrison knights at Berwyck Castle, has wasted too much time pining for a woman who will never be his. When he finally decides to move on with his life and focus on his duties, he is suddenly confronted with a woman who magically appears at his feet. This could either be the best thing that has ever happened to him or another cursed event in a string of many. He soon finds he is wildly attracted to her, but she’s scared to death of him ─ not a very encouraging beginning.

From the shores of California to twelfth century England and back again, Jenna and Fletcher must find a way to reconcile their two different worlds before Time forever tears them apart.

Buy Links:
Amazon US  | Barnes & Noble | iBooks  |  Kobo
Amazon AU | Amazon  BR | Amazon CA Amazon DE | Amazon FRAmazon UK

Be sure to leave a comment below for a chance to win an eCopy of To Follow My Heart, The Knights of Berwyck, A Quest Through Time (Book 3).A winner will be randomly selected during the next week and announced Medieval Monday, December 31st.

Thanks to everyone who participated!

Catch last week’s excerpt here:

First Kiss Friday with Sherry Ewing and a giveaway!


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Hello, my lovelies, and welcome to another First Kiss Friday. I would like to extend a very Merry Christmas from my family to yours and hope the coming year is filled with laughter, joy, and the company of family and good friends.

Today, I like to take you back to the beginning of my work with the first kiss scene from If My Heart Could See You. This story is especially dear to my heart because little did I know it at the time but this novel would spark my entire Knights of Berwyck series, including a couple of my Regency novels. In this scene, Dristan has discovered Amiria’s identity and she has been sick with a high fever. Read all the way through to be in the running for my giveaway and I hope you enjoy this trip down memory lane. Happy reading!


For nigh unto a se’nnight, Dristan hovered over the weakening young woman, lying in his bed, who seemed dwarfed in his eyes. He had become a mere nursemaid to the lass for he would let no other tend her. Sleep had become something of a novelty to him and he could not remember when he had last been able to close his eyes with a good night’s slumber. At least for now, Amiria rested, although she had yet to open her eyes.

Kenna or Lynet saw his meals were brought to his chamber and he ate when he remembered that his body needed nourishment. Usually, ’twas the soft cry of his name coming from Amiria that would cause him to rush to her side, hoping her fever had at last abated. He still remembered how his body had flinched in reaction to hearing his name uttered from her lips for that first time in some desperate cry for help in her state of delirium. ’Twas a clear indication from her words, calling out to him, that whatever tormented her in her dreams, she at least felt he would save her from her fate. If only this would be true once she awoke. Her words, however, may not be of joy once she learned she had unknowingly shared his bed.

Sitting next to her, Dristan’s eyes raked his charge for even the slightest of changes. Fever continued to rage throughout her body. He had alternated between cool cloths upon her head to placing her in a tub of tepid water. The latter seemed to help more, although she put up quite a fight even in her weakened state. He awaited new water to be brought up to be placed in the tub in another attempt to remove the heat tormenting her. Given the last attempt, he would bolt the door and remove his own clothing this time since the last endeavor caused him to become as drenched as Amiria when she fought him from the icy cold.

A brief knock on the door had Dristan rising, thinking the task would be at hand. Opening the door, he saw Riorden, standing there with a grim look upon his face. He opened the portal wider and his captain entered, although he did so reluctantly.

“Is there any change with our lady?” Riorden inquired quietly in concern.

Dristan gave a negative shake of his head. “Your news must not be pleasant for you to disturb me. You have continued training the men?” he drawled wearily.

“Aye, my lord, although ’tis not why I have come.”

“Then tell me your news so I may continue to see to Amiria,” he commanded with a sharp edge to his voice.

“A messenger has returned from the men sent to patrol the outer boundaries of your lands, my liege,” Riorden uttered coolly. “The farthest hamlet to the north has been raided with the village burnt to the ground. All have been slain and the crops destroyed.”

Dristan looked at his captain with fury glazed eyes. “None survived?”

“Nay, my lord. Even the livestock were slaughtered.”

“Have another dozen men sent out to scour the country side. Instruct them to ride light in order to cover more ground. Include one or two of Amiria’s guard. Perchance if the villagers see one of their own with us they might loosen their tongues if they know of any wrong doing,” Dristan said meaningfully. “I will not let this go unpunished if we can capture those involved, nor stand for killing those who are under my care!”

“I will see to it Lord Dristan,” Riorden said with a brief glance towards the bed. “We continue to pray for Lady Amiria’s recovery.”

Dristan only nodded, not trusting himself to speak further regarding her welfare. He opened the door, allowing his captain to exit and bid enter the servants, who brought several pails of water to fill the tub. After they left, he put the bolt in place, locking out the world beyond his chamber. He tested the water and noted ’twas but lukewarm, although to Amiria’s skin ’twould feel like the coolest of springs found high in the mountains.

No sense in putting off the inevitable, he thought and gave a silent prayer that God would forgive him for his deed. He stripped off his clothing and left them neatly folded on a stool by the hearth. With a heavy sigh, he looked down upon his chest and saw the four strips of tender flesh where Amiria’s nails had raked him the last time he plunged her into the tub whilst she fought him like the very devil.

He went to the bed and gazed down upon his beautiful lady. He could think of her as nothing else for she would in truth become his wife once she was well again. ’Twas whilst he stared at her that he began to notice the slight beginnings of a smile playing upon her lips, and he pondered what she dreamed of. She began to stir most alluringly and whispered his name as provocatively and sweetly as any lover could.

He pulled the coverings from Amiria and lifted her into his arms. She molded her body closer to his own and his heart began to beat a little faster. Dristan was caught off guard, feeling her silky limbs wrapping themselves around his neck. The warmth of her lips began to nuzzle his neck and she gave a sigh of contentment as his arms held her tighter.

“You came for me… I knew you would,” she purred into his ear in a soft confident whisper.

“Aye, so it appears,” he said as a tingle went through him with the feel of her breath in his ear. Carrying her to the tub placed by the fire, he slowly swung his legs over its rim to feel the water at his knees. “Brace yourself, Amiria.” She held him tighter as he began to sink down into their bath. Water sloshed over the sides onto the floor the lower he brought them.

“’Tis too cold,” she said groggily with a shiver, trying to get closer to the very heart of him.

“’Tis for the best, my lady, and will make you well again.”

“I do not like it,” she said with a pout and proceeded to turn in his arms.

Afore Dristan could cease her motion, Amiria lifted slightly away from him, moving both legs to either side of his own, and promptly sat down upon his upper thighs with a wiggle of her bare bottom. This certainly was not what he had intended whilst he watched in fascination her fixed glassy eyes take in his face. Her tongue moistened her lips. Smiling, she stole a quick fleeting kiss.

“Warm me,” she demanded, molding herself to his chest and lowering her lips to receive another of his kisses as if she had done so a dozen times afore.

A part of him sprang to life against his better judgment and yet he could not for the life of him cease the intoxicating kiss she gave him. He breathed life into her as their tongues intertwined in a dance known to lovers for centuries. For just a moment longer would he indulge in what she offered, for he knew she would not remember what she did once she was herself again.

He cupped her head, bringing her closer and deepened their kiss. His fingers tangled themselves in the length of her hair ’til he could stand no more. His hands lowered themselves down her back in a gentle caress. She sighed in pleasure and Dristan heard the throaty moan that escaped her. He would have smiled through their kiss if ’twere possible for he had the notion he had awakened a temptress that would forever belong only to him.

She pulled away from his lips with a shake of her glorious red mane and gave a satisfying laugh. Her eyes widened in bewilderment from the hardness of him against her naked flesh. “I have roused my dragon, I see,” she smirked knowingly.

“That you have my dear, but you must yield the day for I would not have you hate me come the morrow. I am, after all, just a man with a man’s desires.”

“You want me then as I want you?” she inquired shyly with a blush to her face.

Dristan gave a brief laugh and caressed her cheek as she leaned into the palm of his hand. “Aye, my lady, more than I should but we cannot continue this.”

“Who are you to say we cannot?”

“I am your liege lord, Amiria. When we come together I would have you more yourself that you remember our first time together as husband and wife.”

Her brows puckered into a frown as she pondered his words. “Are we not wed?” she whispered in puzzlement. Afore he could answer, she continued onward with a brazen look upon her features. “It matters not,” she declared possessively, “for you belong to me!”

Dristan watched his lady as she for the first time hesitantly reach out and began running her fingers over his wet furred chest. Making small circles, she watched him through lowered lids and he shivered at her touch. He sat back amused at her expression since he could tell she was enjoying the feel of his skin beneath her fingertips. Her hushed words confirmed his suspicions.

“I somehow thought a dragon such as you would be smooth to the touch and not covered with so much hair. I believe I like it better this way…” she declared, with a promise reaching her eyes.

Dristan took hold of her hand as she began to reach lower and tenderly placed a kiss to the inside of her wrist. She sighed again at his touch. “Nay, my lady, do not test my resolve further, I beg you. One of us must remember not to let this insanity overtake us, so behave, you vixen!” he said with a chuckle although he had to admit he enjoyed this playful side to Amiria. “Now sit back down that I may bathe you to bring down your fever,” he ordered.

“I am not a child to be treated so.”

“Then do not behave as one so I can do my best to heal your illness.”

She ignored his words and rose, slightly kneeling with him between her legs. She took her hands and smoothed his tresses back from his face in a gentle caress. He gave a sharp intake of breath as she began to touch him at her leisure. ’Twas apparent she approved of feeling a power that she could affect him so.

“You are mine,” she declared knowingly, “and mine alone.”

Dristan stared back at the seriousness in her eyes. “Aye, as you are and will be mine.”

“Then take me now, Sir Dragon.”

“Not today and not like this Amiria.”

“Please Dristan… I want you and only you.”

“You know not what you say, mon amour,” he said, trying to calm his racing heart. God help him but his need to be inside her was beyond anything he had ever felt afore.

If Dristan had known her better, he would have realized from the stubborn tilt of her chin that Amiria would not have him gainsay her as she was wont to have her way. She leaned forward ’til her breasts caressed his chest. Enjoying the sensation it created, she captured his lips again in another searing kiss even whilst she began to lower her body to meet his own.

Dristan was so distracted by the enchantment she had woven around him that he did not realize what Amiria was about in her determination to carry out her desires had been met. ’Twas not ’til he felt himself entering her and breaking through her maidenhead, making them one, that the comprehension came to him full force. He heard her cry of pain and cursed his foolishness at what he allowed to happen. It came crashing down upon him like the fiercest of storms.


Too late, she wrapped her arms around his neck. She held on tightly almost in some attempt to protect him from the pain she felt. Her breathing slowed whilst she became accustomed to the sheer size of him. Dristan feared to move since he did not wish to cause her any further pain, so instead he held her close and whispered words in French to sooth her.

She at last raised her head and loosened her grip about his neck to look into the depths of his eyes. The smile she gave him melted the ice surrounding his heart. He only hoped and prayed she would one day forgive him.

“Now you are in truth mine, Dristan of Berwyck, and we are mated for all time and eternity like the dragons of lore, who but take one true mate for their lifetime,” she said with conviction. “Now make me burn for you, my dragon, as I know only you can and claim me as your own!”

His resolve broken since the damage was done, he told Amiria to hold tight as he rose with her still in his arms. Her legs fasten themselves securely around his hips. They never once broke contact whilst he carried her to his bed with her words to make her burn seared into his heart and, more importantly, into his very soul. Seeing the woman beneath him that had consumed his own dreams for days, he lowered his head and sealed his fate with a hungry kiss. She returned it just as greedily and clasped him tightly to her as if she would never let him go.

Dristan took the remainder of the day and far into the evening to do just as she had asked somehow feeling that he, too, had been burnt into her very soul. ’Twas not ’til the moon was high in the midnight sky that they at last were both completely sated and at long last slept peacefully still entwined in each other’s fierce embrace.

If My Heart Could See You – The MacLaren’s
A Medieval Romance

When you’re enemies, does love have a fighting chance?

For Amiria of Berwyck, defeat does not come easily as she watches her home and clan being ripped asunder. When the very enemy who has laid siege to her home demands her fealty, she will do whatever it takes to protect her people including a hastily concocted ruse that quickly begins to unravel. All too soon, she starts to question whether she can forgive herself for betraying those she has sworn to protect.

Dristan of Blackmore, champion knight of King Henry II, has a reputation to uphold as the Devil’s Dragon. After his invading army conquers Berwyck castle, he sets out to manage the newly claimed estate by training its knight in the art of proper defense. At first, everything appears as it should be, or is it? Betrayed by those he believed he could trust, he must first set aside his anger before he can make room in his heart for love.

Together they are tied by an unspoken bond. As they begin to rebuild the land and unite their people, forces beyond their control attempt to tear apart their fragile truce and only time will tell if love will forever bring them together.

Buy Links – Available in eBook and paperback:

 Amazon US |Amazon AU |  Amazon BR Amazon CA  | Amazon DE Amazon ESAmazon FR Amazon IN Amazon IT Amazon JP  |  Amazon MX  |  Amazon NL  |   Amazon UK

If My Heart Could See You is also now available as an Audiobook. Come listen to how Marian Hussey has made my novel come to life!

Narrated by Marian Hussey

Audiobook Buy Links:
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Giveaway Opportunity!

Everyone like’s a giveaway, right? So how about an extra gift for Christmas from me to you? I’ll give away a audiobook & eBook of If My Heart Could See You to two lucky winners that will be chosen sometime on Christmas day. To be in the running leaving me a comment and tell me what you love most about the holiday season. Best of luck and thanks again for stopping by my First Kiss Friday blog!

Medieval Monday with Barbara Bettis & a giveaway!


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We’re winding down on our theme for Medieval Monday. Please welcome my guest Barbara Bettis who is sharing her snippet from Silverhawk. Be sure to read to the end to learn about her giveaway. a winner will be chosen on December 31st. Happy reading and enjoy!


The evening meal was well advanced by the time she arrived at table. Lord Osbert scowled. His eyes lingered on her face. With a glance at Garley, he grunted, then nodded at her. Emelin swore she detected a flash of pity.

“Sit. Eat.” For once, his rumble sounded almost kind. “You’ll need your strength.” He was certainly right about that. Barring a miracle or a war—could a war be a miracle?—she would wed this man old enough to be her father.


He’s everything a proper lady should never want; she’s everything a bastard mercenary can never have.

Sir Giles has come to England to kill his father, who seduced and betrayed his mother. First, however, he’ll seek sweet revenge—kidnap the old lord’s new betrothed. But when Giles uncovers a plot against King Richard, he faces a dilemma: take the lady or track the traitors. What’s a good mercenary to do? Both, of course.

Lady Emelin has had enough. Abandoned in a convent by her brother, she finally has a chance for home and family. Yet now she’s been abducted. Her kidnapper may be the image of her dream knight, but she won’t allow him to spoil this betrothal. Her only solution: escape

Rescuing the intrepid lady—while hunting traitors—is a challenge Giles couldn’t anticipate.  But the greatest challenge to Giles and Emelin is the fire blazing between them.


Please leave a comment for the chance to win a copy of SILVERHAWK. And join me next week at my place for the last installment of Family Theme: 

If you would like to read last week’s installment, check out Judith Marshall’s blog:

First Kiss Friday with guest Lizzi Tremayne


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Welcome to another First Kiss Friday, my lovelies! This week, I have fellow Bluestocking Belle Lizzi Tremayne as my guest who will give you her first kiss scene from her novella Somewhere Like Home in our holiday box set, Follow Your Star Home. Happy reading and enjoy!

Hello! Thanks for coming by today, and thank you, Sherry, for having me here!

We pick up our story as things are going from bad to worse for Rob and Sofia in the Scottish Highlands… and they haven’t even been cleared from their village yet.


“Sofia.” Rob’s heart wrenched as he called her name from around the corner of the chapel the following morning, his fingers gripping the cut stones.

“Robbie,” she whispered. With a furtive look in all directions, she slipped into the shadows beside him and threw her arms around his neck.

“Are you going up to work at the castle?” He could barely get the words out. “Tell me Archibald was just torturing me,” he murmured, his lips against her kerchief.

“What do you mean?” She pulled her head back and their eyes locked.

“Archibald said a Sofia from the village is going up to work as a maid. You’re the only Sofia here.” He looked away and bit his lip, fearing what he’d see in her eyes.

She shook her head and her fair skin paled. “This is the first I’ve heard of it,” she breathed. “But Màthairwas screaming yesterday morning. She said I wasn’t to talk with you. Did ye ask for me?”

“Apparently, I’m not good enough fer the likes o’ye,” Rob said, his head about to explode, “and I’m to stay away.”

“Oh, Rob,” she said, burying her face in his shirt.

“Yer da was going to talk wi’ me today, but he’s been avoidin’ me,” Rob muttered. “And if I won’t be tacksman, me father’ll disown me. Doesn’t want to know me—ever.”

If she was pale before, she was a ghost now. “We’re both old enough. We can marry. Take me away wi’ ye.”

“If our parents naysay us, Father MacIvor might ha’ somethin’ to say about that, mo luaidh.”

“We can run away and get married.”

He gripped her to him tightly. “I want to, but I canna take ye wherever I might need to go without knowin’ if I could feed us.”

“I’ll wait for ye, then.”

He nodded and nearly smiled, though his heart was breaking. “I’ll find work and build something for us, mo chridhe, then return for you. I’ll show your da, if not your màthair, that I am ‘good enough’—if ye can wait.”

“Forever, Rob,” she said fervently, “forever I’ll wait fer ye, mo chridhe. We can write, thanks to yer teachin’ me to read an’ write.”

“I dinna ken where I’ll be yet.” He pulled her hard against him and leaned back against the wall, its roughness digging into his back beneath his shirt, while he searched his mind for a way they could exchange letters.

The stones of the chapel.

For the first time since he’d entered Sofia’s father’s house the previous morning, he drew a full breath and then another. Squeezing her to him once more, he tilted her chin up to his. “The priest. He’ll exchange letters for us.”

“Do ye think he will?”

“I’m sure he will.” His lips cracked into the first grin in days, and he took a deep breath. “He’ll be happier for that than marry us against our family’s wishes, anyway.”

“Rob,” she said, pulling her kerchief from her head and looping it into the beginnings of a knot, “this was my grandmother’s kerchief. That makes it more solemn. Shall we? If the priest won’t marry us, we can pledge our troths anyway and handfast ourselves. Seanairsaid it was done that way in the old days.”

He smiled and helped her tie the kerchief around their hands, joining left to left and then holding their right hands together over the top.

“I don’t know how they did it,” Sofia murmured, eyes shining, “but this should work.”

“Sofia,” Rob said, for her ears alone, “to you I pledge my troth. I will return to marry you and become your husband, for ever and ever.”

Sofia repeated the words, finishing with, “and become yer wife, fer ever and ever.” Their lips met to seal their joining. “I canna believe this will be our last kiss. Come home to me soon,” she whispered.

“When I return, we’ll have kisses anytime we will.”

“At least yer calmer now,” Sofia murmured. “Yer language reverts when ye’re upset.

Rob allowed himself to smile at that. He could only hold her as her tears fell wetly on his shirt, and his into her hair, until the sun rose and their dark sanctuary slipped away into the morning mist.

“I’ll return for you, mo nighean ruadh, mo chridhe, my heart.” They untied the scarf and held fast to each other again. “Now go,” Rob said against her hair.

“Wait, Rob, gi’ me yer dirk,” she said and reached for one of the tendrils of hair curling around her face. “And the locket from your màthair.”

He drew his blade and carefully cut the lock Sofia held out, then handed it to her. Opening the golden heart, she placed the curl inside, sealed it shut, and kissed it.

“Keep it by yer heart,” she murmured.

“Until the day I die,” Rob said, watching her glowing eyes. “I love you. Now off with you before you’re seen.” He kissed her one last time and gave her a gentle push.

Not looking back, she turned and ran for home.

Now back to the real world… or is it?

You don’t even have to enter a drawing to get a free book today! I’m giving away a free sampler of my stories, just for becoming one of my VIP members!

Get yours here at

Follow Your Star Home:
A Bluestocking Belles Collection
On sale through December 15th for $0.99!

Be sure to grab Follow Your Star Home while it’s still on sale.

Divided sweethearts seek love and forgiveness in this collection of seasonal novellas.

Forged for lovers, the Viking star ring is said to bring lovers together, no matter how far, no matter how hard.

In eight stories covering more than a thousand years, our heroes and heroines put this legend to the test. Watch the star work its magic as prodigals return home in the season of goodwill, uncertain of their welcome.

25% of the proceeds benefit our mutual charity the Malala Fund.

Amazon US  |  iBooks |  Kobo |  NookSmashwords

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Belles’ Blog Hop on now!

Come join our blog hop to see the interlinking stories between all eight of the stories in our new Follow Your Star Home!

It’s here:

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Author Bio:

Lizzi writes about the Old West, Russia, and Colonial New Zealand, as well as veterinary fiction and non-fiction—all with a horsey flair. She’s also one of the newest members of the Bluestocking Belles!

She grew up riding wild in the Santa Cruz Mountain redwoods, became an equine veterinarian at UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, and practiced in the California Pony Express and Gold Country before emigrating to New Zealand.

Lizzi has two wonderful, grown-up boys, a new grandbaby, and an awesome partner in this sea of green. When she’s not writing, she’s swinging a rapier or shooting a bow in medieval garb, riding, driving a carriage or playing on her hobby farm, singing, or working as an equine veterinarian or science teacher. She’s multiply published and awarded in fiction, special interest magazines and veterinary periodicals.

Sign up for Lizzi Tremayne’s Newsletter and get a copy of her Lizzi Tremayne Sampler for free. Be the first to know about new releases, special offers, and news here:

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Thanks for coming by! Great to meet you!