Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Back to the Books Giveaway Hop

I'll announce the winner of the Awesome August Blog Hop tomorrow. But while you're waiting to see if your name is going to appear on JDP NEWS, you can start hopping all over again to win more prizes! Over 300 prizes, actually! Today begins the Back to the Books Giveaway Hop, sponsored by I Am A Reader, Not a Writer and Buried in Books.

This time around I'm giving away a copy of the YA novel, Flame-Coloured Tafetta, by Rosemary Sutcliff. This is the book that sent me on the hunt for more titles by Sutcliff and led to what is currently still my favorite book that I've read this year: The Eagle of the Ninth. Don't you love it when you stumble across wonderful new authors you never knew existed? Here's the blurb from the book jacket (this is a hardcover book):

When twelve-year-old Damaris discovers a young man who has been shot in the woods near her house, she doesn't stop to worry that he may be a smuggler or spy wanted by King George's Custom House men. Instead she turns to those she can trust--her best friend, Peter, and Genty Small the Wise Woman--for help in saving his life. And after Tom Wildgoose recovers enough to be able to talk about himself, but chooses to be evasive when answering Damaris's questions, she doesn't really mind. What is important to Damaris is that he will be leaving soon, taking away all the adventure and mystery he had suddenly brought into her life.

But then Tom is captured by Mr. Farrington, who threatens to turn him over to the authorities. In a true act of loyalty, Damaris jeopardizes her own safety to rescue the mysterious young man and set him free once again.

If this sounds like a book you'd like to win, then leave me a comment telling me the name of a favorite new author you've read in the last 12 months. INCLUDE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS SO I CAN CONTACT YOU IF YOU WIN.

For additional entries, you may do any or all of the following:

+1 Become a follower of JDP NEWS (Google Friend Connect), then leave me a comment letting me know.
+1 Subscribe to JDP NEWS via the Feedburner subscription box in the left hand sidebar. You must confirm your subscription. Then leave a comment letting me know.
+1 Become a NetworkedBlogs follower in the left hand sidebar, then leave a comment letting me know.
+1 "Like" my Facebook author page, then leave a comment letting me know.


Deadline for entries is September 7, midnight PST. USA entries only, please.

(If for any reason you are unable to leave a comment on my blog, send it to with "JDP NEWS: Back to Books Giveaway Hop" in the subject line, and I'll count it.)

All entered? Great! Then hop along to the links below to find more great prizes!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Awesome August Blog Hop!

Hey everyone! I don't know about you, but right about now in southern Arizona, we're beginning to wonder if summer will EVER end. It's waaaaay too hot to go outside unless absolutely necessary. What to do, what to do? How about...stay inside and read a book? Awesome author Tristi Pinkston has put together an Awesome August Blog Hop to give you all an opportunity to win new books to distract you from the never-ending summer. (Okay, so maybe some of you are luckier than I am, and are beginning to finally feel a snap in the air. If so...I am sooooo jealous. But you can still enter for my giveaway anyway. ;-) )

35 blogs have signed up to giveaway fun prizes. All you have to do is hop from link to link below and follow the directions on each blog.

On my blog, I'm giving away a copy of Easterfield, by Anna Jones Buttimore. Click here to read a review by Anne Bradshaw.

How can you enter for a chance to win? Just leave me a comment and tell me: What's the weather like wherever you are at the time you leave this comment. And include your email address, because if I can't contact you, I can't let you know if you won.

This blog hop ends at midnight Wednesday, August 31. But I'll be participating in the Back to School Blog Hop beginning on Thursday, September 1, so be sure to stop by again on Thursday for more great book-themed prizes!

Awesome August Blog Hop Participants

1. Tristi Pinkston, LDS Author
2. Karen Hoover
3. Michael Young
4. Kristy Tate
5. cindy Hogan
6. Julie Bellon
7. Margot Hovley
8. Laurie Lewis
9. Mandi Slack
10. Melanie Jacobson
11. Joyce DiPastena
12. Renae Mackley
13. Debbi Weitzell
14. Donna Hatch
15. Carolyn Frank
16. Marsha Ward
17. Stacy Coles
18. Bonnie Harris
19. Danyelle Ferguson aka Queen of the Clan
20. Diony George
21. Lisa Asanuma
22. Susan Dayley
23. Christine Bryant @ Day Dreamer
24. Stephanie Humphreys
25. Ranee` Clark
26. Tamera Westhoff
27. I Am A Reader, Not A Writer
28. Heather Justesen
29. Rebecca Talley
30. Jennifer Hurst
31. Aimee Brown
32. Cheryl Christensen
33. Rachelle Christensen
34. Imaginary Reads
35. Andrea Pearson

Summary Sunday

Summary Sunday is where I share one new sentence from each day of my writing week with you. It's a way to give you a flavor of what I'm currently working on, and a way to hold myself accountable for actually writing something during the week so I'll have some sentences to share with you! :-)

These sentences are from my never-ending draft of Acelet's story. (Acelet was a character in Illuminations of the Heart, in case you haven't read it.)

Monday: For you, she vowed to the former, whom I lost to his greed, and for Lord Simon, whom she had lost to his lies.   

Wednesday: When the wax began to drip, he thrust the end of the stick against the parchment, swiveling the stick back and forth to create a thick, flat circle.

Thursday: Niccola had been kind to her until now, but a threat to one wife must appear a threat to all, and if Niccola mistook cold resignation for shamelessness, what did it matter to her?

Friday: This time Joslin gave vent to her rebellion by flinging the garment at him.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Sweet Saturday Samples

This week, my Sweet Saturday Sample is again taken from my sweet medieval romance, Illuminations of the Heart (rated PG). My heroine, Siri de Calendri, has journeyed from Italy to France to enter the guardianship of Sir Triston de Brielle, at the command of her late brother's will. Her first meeting with her new guardian is a bit of a surprise, as you'll discover if you read on. :-)

Lucianna broke off as the man strode abruptly across the hall and caught Siri’s chin in his hand. Siri gasped a little as he forced back her head. She saw the way the blood washed away behind his tan. She had an impression of strong, passionate features and a mass of coal-black curls, before she found herself engulfed in the swirling agony of his eyes. They embraced her like two deep ebony pools, drawing her into an eddy of pain so poignant that she thought she must drown in its depths. From some great ringing distance, she heard him utter a name, not her own, but one spoken on a breath like a prayer.


And then the dark eyes closed and he lowered his lips to hers.

His mouth covered hers in a soft but urgent caress, and in his kiss was a need so great that Siri had not the power to deny him. Curiously, she found that she had no desire to try, but allowed her lips to warm in a wonderfully spontaneous response.

“Signore, please!”

Lucianna’s sharp voice pierced whatever mad fancy had seized this man. He lifted his head with an unsteady breath.


Siri was certain no one could hear the whispered name but she. She felt a queer twinge of regret that she must disillusion him.

“I am Siri,” she said.


“Siriol de Calendri. You knew my brother, Simon Geraud.”

For a moment his fingers lingered on her chin, his dark eyes clouded with a mist of confusion.

“Simon.” He released her and stepped back a pace, then raised his hand to rub at his eyes. “Of course. You must forgive me. Your resemblance to—someone I knew—is remarkable.

Thank you for stopping by. You can read more about Illuminations of the Heart on my website. And click here to find some more Sweet Saturday Samples.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

What Am I Writing Now?

Having taken a break from Acelet’s story to dabble with The Lady and the Minstrel (I swear, I am going to finish that story one day!), I’m ready to take a stab at Acelet's romance again. As many you will have already guessed if you’ve been following my Summary Sunday updates. J

So, when we left Acelet at the end of Illuminations of the Heart, he was recovering from a sword wound in his back, with a lovely, brown-haired lass sitting by his side, hanging on every word of his tale of Raoulin and Mylisant. Having spent the entire course of the book idolizing the Young King (eldest son of King Henry II of England), he suddenly finds himself in favor with the man he has loathed for the entire course of the book, Duke Richard of Aquitaine (second son of King Henry II), who is offering to help him achieve his long-held dream of becoming a knight. But is a knighthood still what he really wants?

As I attempt to write Acelet a romance of his own, these are the questions I face:

Is the beautiful Lisette the woman Siri referred to in Illuminations of the Heart when she promised Acelet: “One day when you feel your heart take flight at the smile of some winsome lass, you will realize how silly you have been” [to think himself in love with Siri]?

Will he accept Duke Richard’s training for knighthood? Or will he follow his cousin Triston’s advice to become a troubadour? And are the two mutually exclusive?

Will he ever meet his idol, the Young King, and if he does, will that young man live up to his expectations?

Is there more to the story of Raoulin and Mylisant that we knew in Illuminations of the Heart?

Will his chivalrous ideals survive whatever trials he endures in the course of this new book?

And who is this odd character, Bricot, who literally popped up out of thin air in Chapter 3? Where did he come from, what’s he doing in my book, and what exactly are his intentions now that he’s here?

I’d like to tell you that I know the answers to all these questions, but while I do know some, others are still revealing themselves to me.

I can tell you one thing. Acelet has a harp. Feel free to guess away at what that may or may not mean. J

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Tuesday Teaser

Tuesday Teaser is a weekly bookish meme (rhymes with “cream"), hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. (I’ve borrowed it from LDS Women’s Book Review.) Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share at least two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)

Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR lists if they like your teasers!

I'm adapting the rules slightly. I'll be quoting some random lines from the last chapter I read before I post a teaser. I'm a slow reader, so you may get multiple teasers per book. Here's my second teaser from The Lantern Bearers, by Rosemary Sutcliff:

"Are the Saxon kind, then, become yet more hateful to you than Rome  has always been?" Ambrosius asked levelly.

The silence held for a long moment, broken only by the soughing of the wind through the heather and the jink of a bridle-bit as a horse flung up its head. Then Vortimer spoke again for his fellows.

From The Lantern Bearers, page 112

If you'd like to share a teaser from a book you're currently reading, I'd love you to do so in the comment section. And you don't even have to share it on a Tuesday! Be sure to include the title, author, and page number in case others would like to check out the book you're reading.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Summary Sunday

Summary Sunday is where I share one new sentence from each day of my writing week with you. It's a way to give you a flavor of what I'm currently working on, and a way to hold myself accountable for actually writing something during the week so I'll have some sentences to share with you! :-)

These sentences are from my never-ending draft of Acelet's story. (Acelet was a character in Illuminations of the Heart, in case you haven't read it.)

Tuesday: Sir Raimon’s anger usually bit with the precision of an unanticipated whip.

Wednesday: "I have no intention of being a blind tool in your hand."

Friday: "You have certainly bided your time patiently for a man they claim rides like a devil into battle with a sword always first to be bathed in blood."

Saturday: The vision rose so strongly she could hear the victorious rattling of the shackles.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Sweet Saturday Samples

This week, my Sweet Saturday Sample is taken from my sweet medieval romance, Illuminations of the Heart (rated PG), a spin-off of Loyalty's Web. My heroine, Siri de Calendri, and her companion Lucianna, have been surrounded by a band of robber barons on their journey to join her new guardian, Sir Triston de Brielle.

He reached out a mailed hand and threw back the hood of Siri’s cloak.

Siri was not surprised to hear his gasp. She had seen too many men stand stunned by her unexpected beauty. Their flattery she knew by heart: her glowing locks rivaled the liquid sheen of purest gold, her eyes dazzled like the sky on a midsummer’s day, her cheeks bloomed with the blush of spring roses…

For all this and its accompanying effect she was prepared. 

But she was not prepared for his companions’ startled oaths, or the signs of the cross sketched hastily across mailed breasts.

“It’s impossible!”

“But it is she!”

“My lord, it cannot be—“

“Silence!” their leader snapped, and Siri caught an impatient amber flash from behind the eye-slits of his helmet.

Thank you for stopping by. You can read more about Illuminations of the Heart on my website. And click here to find some more Sweet Saturday Samples.