Thursday, November 17, 2016

Giveaway: Timeless Romance Anthology

Christmas is just around the corner. Do you have family or friends who still prefer old fashioned print books to ebooks? Then here is an opportunity and giveaway for you!

Four of the Timeless Romance Anthology series are now available in paperback in Seagull Books (Utah only) and Deseret Book stores (everywhere)! You can win a FREE BOOK by helping the authors to celebrate! (In full disclosure, my short medieval Christmas story, Caroles on the Green, is included in the Winter Anthology edition.)

Details for how you can win a free book as well as be entered for a chance at a $50 Amazon gift certificate are below. Don't know where your closest Desert Book or Seagull stores are located? Click here for the Deseret Book location finder for multiple states and here for the Seagull Books location finder for Utah stores.



Saturday, October 1, 2016

#ILoveHistoricalRomance Winners!

Congratulations to the winners of my #ILoveHistoricalRomance giveaway!

1st Prize: Haley H. ($50 PayPal cash)

2nd Prize: Michelle L. (Loyalty's Web/Illuminations of the Heart/Dangerous Favor)

3rd Prize: Amy C. (Loving Lucianna/Courting Cassandry)

4th Prize: Julie M. (The Lady and the Minstrel)

Thank you to everyone who played and shared my books online!


Tuesday, September 6, 2016

#ILoveHistoricalRomance giveaway

I think it’s time for a giveaway! I did something very similar to this when my third medieval romance, Dangerous Favor, came out. Three books and a couple of novellas later, I think it’d be fun to do it again.

Here are the rules: Post a photo of yourself holding any of my books to Facebook, Twitter, or your blog (if you have one) along with the hashtag #ILoveHistoricalRomance. (Photos may be combined into a single blog post then submitted separately for each title.) Then enter the link to your post in the Rafflecopter form below for a chance at one of these prizes:

1st place – a $50 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift certificate ($50 PayPal cash for international entries)
2nd place – an autographed print set of my first three medieval romances, Loyalty’s Web, Illuminations of the Heart, and Dangerous Favor (See below for international entries)
3rd place – an autographed print set of my Hearts in Autumn Romances, Loving Lucianna and Courting Cassandry (See below for international entries)
4th place – an autographed print copy of my medieval romantic historical, The Lady and the Minstrel (See below for international entries)

That’s right, there will be up to 4 winners!

Each book cover that you post yourself holding will count as a separate entry, giving you multiple chances to win. And you can post the same photos multiple days in a row for the course of the giveaway. Don't forget the hashtag! (#ILoveHistoricalRomance)

Do you have to buy a copy of one of my books to enter? No! Borrow a copy from a friend or checkout a copy from your local library. (Your library doesn’t have my books? Request they add them!) Then snap a picture of yourself with the book (print, e-book, the format doesn’t matter—and yes, if you have a copy of my first 3 books with their original covers, those count, also), start posting, and enter the Rafflecopter giveaway below.

FOR INTERNATIONAL ENTRIES:

1st Prize - $50 PayPal cash

2nd Prize – unsigned print copies of Loyalty’s Web/Illuminations of the Heart/Dangerous Favor sent using Amazon Global if your country is included. Otherwise, PayPal cash equal to the American sum of the print cover prize.  ($40 USD)
3rd Prize - unsigned print copies of Loving Lucianna/Courting Cassandry sent using Amazon Global if your country is included. Otherwise, PayPal cash equal to the American sum of the print cover prize. ($25 UDS)
4th Prize – unsigned print copies of The Lady and the Minstrel sent using Amazon Global if your country is included. Otherwise, PayPal cash equal to the American sum of the print cover prize. ($16 USD)

DEADLINE: midnight EST September 30, 2016

**I will not republish any of your photos unless you give me permission. If you’d like to give me permission to share your photo (with or without your name—your choice), select that entry on the Rafflecopter form and follow the instructions listed there. This option is worth 5 points.


If the Rafflecopter form does not appear, click on the link

TERMS OF THE GIVEAWAY: Open only to those who can legally enter, receive Amazon/B&N gift certificates, or use money sent via Paypal. No purchase necessary. The winning entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. You must be 18 or older to enter. The winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter on October 1, 2016 and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

HOW TO FIND PERMALINKS

To find the permalink to your Facebook post, click on the time/date of the post, then copy and paste the link into the Rafflecopter form.

To find the permalink on Twitter, click on the time/date of the tweet, then copy and paste the link into the Rafflecopter form


To find the permalink to blog post, click on the title of your post, then copy and paste the link into the Rafflecopter form.

Questions? Contact me at jdipastena@yahoo.com



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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Cover reveal ~ Heart Strings, by Donna Hatch


I'm so excited to get to participate in Regency author Donna Hatch's newest cover reveal, hosted by Loving the Book!

For those who haven't yet met Donna, let's get to know her:


Donna Hatch is the author of the best-selling “Rogue Hearts Series,” and a winner of writing awards such as The Golden Quill and the International Digital Award. A hopeless romantic and adventurer at heart, she discovered her writing passion at the tender age of 8 and has been listening to those voices ever since. She has become a sought-after workshop presenter, and also juggles freelance editing, multiple volunteer positions, and most of all, her six children (seven, counting her husband). A native of Arizona who recently transplanted to the Pacific Northwest, she and her husband of over twenty years are living proof that there really is a happily ever after.

Connect with the Author:

      

   

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And now, let's check out her fantastic new book!

Synopsis:

Gently bred young ladies don’t run away from home to find employment, but when forced to choose between marrying a brutish oaf or becoming another man’s mistress, Susanna makes an unconventional decision. Following her passion for music, she flees to London with dreams of securing a position as a harpist. Becoming entangled with a handsome violinist who calls himself Kit, but who seems too aristocratic for a working-class musician, may be more problematic than sleeping in the streets.

Kit's attention is captured by Susanna’s breath-taking talent, admirable grace, and winsome smiles…until a lawman exposes the new harpist as a runaway bride and a thief. With peril lurking in the shadows, Susanna’s imminent danger not only forces Kit to choose between his better judgment and his heart, but he must also embrace the life to which he swore he would never return.



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And now ... are you ready to see the wonderful new cover??



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Isn't it gorgeous? The cover art was done by The Write Designer.


Share Donna's fun news and enter the giveaway below!








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Monday, July 4, 2016

Summer Book Trek 2016



What is the Summer Book Trek? To quote from the trek's sponsor: 

“Calling ALL fiction readers!!! Summer Book Trek 2016 is a summer reading challenge! Read novels by LDS authors. Set your goals and track your progress. No goal is too small; no ambition too great. Feeling overwhelmed? Make a short list. Finish early? Add more books (or not). Change your mind on a title? Drop it. No pressure, no minimums. Make changes to your list as desired.”

I’ve decided to take up the “No goal is too small” challenge and join the Summer Book Trek this year. Yes, I’m being brutally honest—I am only committing to read one published fiction book by July 31 (the Summer Book Trek’s deadline). Why only one book? Because I’m also loaded up on reading non-fiction research books on medieval Venice, beta reading an unpublished book for a friend, and of course, I have to reserve time to write a new book of my own!

The book I’ve committed to read is Menopausal Fairy Mischief, by Tina Scott.



Hey, if I finish early and have time to squeeze another book in, the rules say I can add it later.

Although the Summer Book Trek is sponsored by New LDS Fiction and all the eligible books are written by LDS authors, they do NOT have to contain LDS content (none of my published books do, and neither does the one that I'm reading by Tina Scott) and you do NOT need to be a member of the LDS Church to participate.

If you would like to join the Summer Book Trek or just learn more about it, click below:



Monday, June 27, 2016

The travelogue inside my head

Recently I travelled with one of my secondary characters, Gerolt de Warenne, to the Church of Saint-Etienne in Beauvais France. Gerolt is the hero of my second Hearts in Autumn romance, Courting Cassandry, where he has grown up to be a very level-headed man. But in the sort-of prequel I’m writing (“sort-of” because Gerolt is a secondary character, not the hero), Gerolt is a somewhat wild nineteen-year-old who repeatedly falls into trouble with his best friend, Samson.


 (Church of Saint-Etienne)

One night, during a journey to France, Gerolt and Samson stole out of the castle they were staying at and sneaked into the Church of Saint-Etienne in the dead of night. Why? Because the church was sponsoring the medieval Play of Daniel, and Gerolt and Samson wanted to see if the church was keeping real lions to use in the play. (They weren’t.)




Gerolt and Samson frightened all the canons with their midnight “break-in.” The next morning, the lord of the castle made his displeasure with his guests’ behavior known and Gerolt and his traveling companions were politely but pointedly invited to continue with their journey elsewhere.

The Play of Daniel was a medieval liturgical drama (religious dramas performed in Latin). The play dates from the 12th century and exists in two forms. The earliest known written version contains text but no music. A version from the 13th century includes monophonic music written by students who formed the cathedral choir at the Cathedral of St Peter in Beauvais, France. (Constructed later than the Church of Saint-Etienne.)

Here is a 10 minute clip from the Play of Daniel as performed at the Met Cloisters in New York City in 2008.



Monday, May 9, 2016

Blog tour: The Gladiator and the Guard, by Annie Douglass Lima

I'm happy to be able to participate in the book blog tour for Annie Douglass Lima's new young adult action and adventure novel, The Gladiator and the Guard, now available for purchase! This is the second book in the Krillonian Chronicles, sequel to The Collar and the Cavvarach

First Things First: a Little Information about Book 1: 

Bensin, a teenage slave and martial artist, is desperate to see his little sister freed. But only victory in the Krillonian Empire's most prestigious tournament will allow him to secretly arrange for Ellie's escape. Dangerous people are closing in on her, however, and Bensin is running out of time.  With his one hope fading quickly away, how can Bensin save Ellie from a life of slavery and abuse?


What is the Collar for, and What is a Cavvarach?


The story is set in a world very much like our own, with just a few major differences.  One is that slavery is legal there.  Slaves must wear metal collars that lock around their neck, making their enslaved status obvious to everyone.  Any slave attempting to escape faces the dilemma of how and where to illegally get their collar removed (a crime punishable by enslavement for the remover).  


Another difference is the popularity of a martial art called cavvara shil.  It is fought with a cavvarach (rhymes with "have a rack"), a weapon similar to a sword but with a steel hook protruding from partway down its top edge.  Competitors can strike at each other with their feet as well as with the blades.  You win in one of two ways: disarming your opponent (hooking or knocking their cavvarach out of their hands) or pinning their shoulders to the mat for five seconds.


Click here to order The Collar and the Cavvarach from Amazon 

for $2.99 a discounted price of just 99 cents through May 30th!


And now, The Gladiator and the Guard, with another awesome cover by the talented Jack Lin!




Bensin, a teenage slave andmartial artist, is just one victory away  from freedom. But after he is accused of a crime he didn’t commit, he is condemned to the violent life and early death of a gladiator. While his loved ones seek desperately for a way to rescue him, Bensin struggles to stay alive and forge an identity in an environment designed to strip it from him. When he infuriates the authorities with his choices, he knows he is running out of time. Can he stand against the cruelty of the arena system and seize his freedom before that system crushes him?


Click here to order The Gladiator and the Guard in Kindle format from Amazon 

for $2.99 a discounted price of just 99 cents through May 30th!

Click here to order The Gladiator and the Guard from Smashwords (for Nook or in other digital formats) 

for $2.99 a discounted price of just 99 cents through May 30th!


An Excerpt:


“There comes Bensin!” Ellie gripped Steene’s hand more tightly. “Finally!”

They watched as Bensin ran out toward the battle, cavvarach at the ready. From the opposite side of the arena, a Yellow Arena gladiator with a scimitar ran to meet him.

“That’s not fair,” Ellie protested. “That guy has a whole shield, and Bensin only has a shil.”

“Yes, but a cavvarach is a little longer than a scimitar. Besides, Bensin gets to kick. He’ll be okay.” Steene refused to let any trace of uncertainty into his voice.

They watched as the weapons clanged together. But after a moment Steene realized that Bensin wasn’t giving it all he had. Was he perhaps still injured from a previous battle? Surely not, or they wouldn’t have chosen him to compete today.

Though he struck out with his cavvarach again and again, Steene could see that Bensin was aiming only for that scimitar, not the Yellow glad’s flesh. Though he kicked again and again, it was apparent that he was trying to kick that shield aside, to knock the scimitar away. What’s he doing? He had an opening right there. He could have cut the guy’s throat!

Steene watched, growing increasingly puzzled. Bensin was focusing mainly on defense, and doing it well. But he knew Bensin was capable of much more vigorous offense. Why wasn’t he trying harder? He could have beaten the Yellow warrior two or three times already.

Gradually Steene realized what was happening. He’s trying not to hurt him. That was the only explanation.

Why would Bensin do that? It was obvious that no one else in the battle cared if they hurt their opponents. Actually, all the rest of them were doing their best to disable their opponents in any way they possibly could. And there was Bensin, making what Steene could now see was a deliberate effort not to hurt the man he was fighting.

Pride welled up in Steene. He wasn’t sure why the kid had apparently made this choice not to be violent in such a violent place, but it seemed he was sticking by his decision in spite of the danger.
 

Would it get Bensin killed, though? His opponent clearly felt no qualms about injuring him


Annie Douglass Lima spent most of her childhood in Kenya and later graduated from Biola University in Southern California. She and her husband Floyd currently live in Taiwan, where she teaches fifth grade at
Morrison Academy. She has been writing poetry, short stories, and novels since her childhood, and to date has published twelve books (two YA action and adventure novels, four fantasies, a puppet script, and five anthologies of her students’ poetry). Besides writing, her hobbies include reading (especially fantasy and science fiction), scrapbooking, and international travel.

Connect with the Author Online:



Now, enter to win an Amazon gift card or a free digital copy of The Collar and the Cavvarach!





Or find the giveaway at this link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/ad2fd99a3/?