DEAL ALERT: Yours All Along is on sale for 99 cents!

YOURS ALL ALONG is on sale for 99 cents for a limited time! You guys know I'm never on sale, lol, so if you haven't grabbed Hunter and Devon's story yet, now's the time! This is a friends-to-lovers male/male romance. 

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

The new Loving on the Edge romance from the New York Times bestselling author of  Nothing Between Us turns on the heat between two men who wonder how much they’re willing to risk in the name of love.

Four years after an accident tore their friendship apart, Hunter and Devon are living separate lives. Hunter is now the all-America hero—a congressman’s son and a pro pitcher in Houston preparing to marry his beauty-queen girlfriend. Devon is in Dallas running a new restaurant.

But when Hunter unexpectedly shows up in Devon’s bar, Devon can’t turn him away. Damn it if the man isn’t still gorgeous. But engaged? Hell no. All he’s doing for Devon is bringing back memories of their college-roommate days, and the night their relationship went too far. Turns out Hunter has never forgotten it either.

Now Devon can’t help but be drawn in all over again by the only guy who’s ever gotten close enough to break his heart. Maybe one more night together would be enough for both of them to finally move on. Or maybe one night will change everything…

 

Your Invitation to Eden Is Here - Enjoy Your Stay (And Win Stuff!)

 

Today is the official release day for the August Invitation to Eden releases, including mine, Blurring the Lines!

Check out all three because each give something a little different. Mari Carr is giving you sexy suspense, Steena Holmes is giving you sweet contemporary, and I'm giving you steamy contemporary with a paranormal twist.

Also, we've got prizes! Don't miss out on the huge contest where you can win one of three End of Summer prize packs. (Enter below.)

 

 

Blurring the Lines by Roni Loren

A year has passed since Gretchen lost her fiancé, but she still can’t sleep. Or paint. And her new home in New Orleans is either haunted or she’s finally going crazy.
Her bet is on the latter.

So when her best friend, Burke, offers to sweep her away to a private luxury island for a break, she can’t say no. Maybe if she can be someone else for a few days, the ghosts of the past will quiet. At least for a little while.

Burke knows what she’s going through. She lost her fiancé, but he lost family. He gets her in a way no else can. But lately she’s noticing things she shouldn’t about her former fiancé’s younger brother—his sexy smirk, that spicy Cajun accent, and the way he looks at her when he thinks she’s not paying attention. A week alone with him? Dangerous. If she blurs the lines between them, she could ruin the only friendship that means anything to her. She could ruin it all.

But the island of Eden has its own agenda. The island knows what you need. That’s what the invitation says. She just never imagines it will grant her the one wish that could destroy them both.

Kindle Nook Kobo iTunes


Rough Draft by Mari Carr (Big Easy, Book 4)

Capture, bondage and fantasies fulfilled. It’s all fun and games until someone gets killed.

 Bestselling crime novelist Jett Lewis is stumbling over a wicked case of writer’s block, his fast-flowing words having run dry. His publisher’s screaming “deadline”, the fans are ready to riot, and Jett just wants to disappear. His friend Carissa suggests he get away, clear his head…get laid. And she has just the ticket. Literally. Two passes to Eden, an exclusive island paradise. Recently sans girlfriend, Jett convinces Carissa to go with him, and the resort is more than either of them bargained for—especially when the simple beach trip turns to murder. Thrust into a plot sinister enough to rival Jett’s books, the couple embarks on a search for the killer. The most shocking revelation of all might be their mutual attraction…and how much Jett and Carissa love working undercover.

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Return to Sender by Steena Holmes (Return to Sender trilogy, Book 1)

Lauren Summers is the stable sister, the one who runs the family company while her sisters take off and travel the world. One weekend a year she hides herself away and mourns a love she lost six years ago. That weekend is now, except she’s being whisked away to a mysterious island despite her protests. After being pampered with luxury, massages and the best chocolate a girl could taste, she starts to realize that its time she left the past behind and moved forward with life, and maybe with love. What she doesn’t know, is that someone from her past has other ideas…

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CONTEST!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Happy reading!

Book Binging: What I've Bought Lately

I'm just getting back from a week in New Orleans visiting my fam and eating more than any one person should. I'm behind on just about everything now, but I thought I'd pop in and share what I've added to my TBR stack in the past few weeks. 

You can click on the cover for more info.

Full Dark No Stars by Stephen King

(because King knows how to write a short story)

 

To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han

(caught this on sale I believe, but like the concept)

 

 

The Distance Between Us by Kasie West

(love this cover and saw book recommended somewhere)

 

Contemporary Male/Male Romance Boxed Set

(A boxed set of m/m romance from authors I've heard of? Yes, please.)

 

The Luckiest Lady in London by Sherry Thomas

(Sherry is an agency mate and I've heard wonderful things about her books. On sale for 1.99 right now.)

 

You Make Me by Erin McCarthy (free)

(I rarely download free books anymore b/c I've been burned but saw this one recommended somewhere.)

 

The Governess Affair by Courtney Milan (free)

(Courtney is also an agency mate and I always hear great things about her books.)

 

The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han

(Was on sale and I've almost bought this one a few times, so took the plunge.)

 

Seed by Ania Ahlborn

(I love a scary story and this was on sale and had good reviews.)

 

Beyond Control by Kit Rocha (sale 99 cents)

(Read the first one and liked it. Very filthy--and I mean that as a compliment, lol.)

 

If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan

(Two girls in love in Iran? That premise sounded too different and interesting to pass up.)

 

Have Mercy by Shelley Ann Clark

(I believe I saw this one reviewed at Dear Author. Femdom heroine is what caught my eye.)

 

As Red As Blood by Salla Simukka

(This is part of the July Kindle First program, so it looked most interesting of the four choices.)

 

The Journal of Best Practices by David Finch

(My son is on the autism spectrum, so I'm always interested in memoirs by people on the spectrum.)

 

One Man Guy by Michael Barakiva

(Male/Male YA - I couldn't resist.)

 

What I'm Reading Right Now:

Things I Can't Forget by Miranda Kenneally

(The first in this series, Catching Jordan, is on sale right now for 1.99 if you want to start from the beginning. Full disclosure: Miranda is an agency mate of mine, but I love her books.)

 

What I Just Finished:

Sea Swept by Nora Roberts

(My first Nora! Enjoyed it and am looking forward to the next in the series.)

 

So what have you bought lately? What are you reading? Which books are you telling your friends about?

All 8 Parts Are Out! Cliffhanger-Phobics Rejoice :)

NOT UNTIL YOU LOVE is out today! I can't believe we've reached the end of the 8 weeks of the NOT UNTIL YOU serial already. This summer is flying by. For those of you who have been reading along, thank you and I hope you've enjoyed the journey. I've enjoyed sharing it with you each week.

And for those who are cliffhanger-phobic, which I totally understand and respect, now you can get all eight parts and read them back to back with no waiting! : )  

I can't wait to hear what everyone thinks of the conclusion of Foster and Cela's story.

And if you have read it, I always appreciate any reviews you'd like to leave on the retail sites or Goodreads or any tweets and Facebook mentions. You'd be amazed at how much those things help a book. 

*hugs to all* And hope you're not sick of me yet because next week, Wyatt's story releases!!! I'm SO excited about CAUGHT UP IN YOU. Those characters are particularly near and dear to my heart so I can't wait to have y'all read their story. : )

A Message To My UK & Australian Readers About Ebook Availability

UK/Australian Readers:

I know y'all have been patiently waiting for the issue with the e-serial to be resolved. I really appreciate your patience. Here's what I know at this point: Harper UK bought the rights for ALL of my current and future books (through Colby's story next year) from Berkley (my U.S. publisher.) So the Berkley ebook versions of Fall Into You, Still Into You, and the e-serial Not Until You were pulled in the UK and Australia because Berkley no longer has the right to publish them there. (You can still get a paperback of FALL.)

So the good news is this means these books (and my future ones) will be available in the UK in ebook probably with less delay than in the past and possibly for a lower price. (The first two books, if you remember, didn't come out in ebook in the UK/Australia for almost a year after U.S. release.) But the bad news is, I don't know *when* Fall Into You and the rest of Not Until You will be available again. I have an email into the UK publisher (via Berkley) to see if they know re-release dates set, but I haven't heard back yet. My guess is that they will redesign covers and such like they did with the first two books, so it may be a little while. I did let them know that there is a demand for these as soon as possible since many of you read the first two parts of the serial before it was pulled, so I'm hoping they rush it and get them back out there quickly. But I have no control over that aspect. 

Once again, I am SO sorry for the inconvenience and the frustration. Had I known this would happen this way, I would've requested the U.S. versions of the first two parts to not be released at all in the UK & Australia so that people didn't start reading only to be left waiting for the rest. I'm a reader first before a writer so I know the frustration of starting something and then not being able to finish. I wish I could fix it from my end, but unfortunately, I can't, so all I can say is I'm sorry it happened this way and when it releases in the UK/Australia, I will be thrilled and excited to discuss the books with you guys. 

*Sending chocolate and hoping for your understanding*

 

A Year Of Book Buying in Review: Did Social Media Influence My Choices?

What does a year say? Today I was reading Janice Hardy's blog about having too many Twitter followers (and I agree, go read it. It's a great article.) But she linked to an older post by The Intern on author social media presence and if it makes a difference. Does all that tweeting/blogging/spinning plates in the air really effect book sales? 

I've talked about the topic before from my own perspective as an author. However, I thought it would be interesting to look at my own book buying habits as a READER over the past year to see if all that social media book buzz made me buy books. 

*Now, the caveat here is that since I am in this industry, I am dialed in to social media and the world of authors, book bloggers, editors, and such. Readers like me are probably a very small segment of the book buying population. But I still thought it'd be interesting to look at my personal stats.

So here's a look at my 2012:

Format...

 

Number of ebooks (not including free) bought this year: 80

Number of print (not including free) bought this year: 23

Thoughts: Wow, I've definitely become an ebook junkie. But this is probably less about a preference for ebook than it is the sale factor. All those ebook sales get me. Plus, I get LOTS of free print books from conferences so I only have so much room.

 

How'd I find out about the books I acquired?

 

On Sale (not including free): 35

Discovered Online through someone other than the author (book blogger, twitter rec, etc.): 22

Free ebooks: 17

Favorite Authors/Auto-buys: 16

Heard About Online Directly From Author: 14

Random purchases: 5

Free print books: A lot, probably at least 50.

Thoughts:

-On sale is clearly an effective strategy for me BUT there were a lot more sales I passed up. Often those sales were paired with an online mention/rec by a book blogger or someone I know. So the sale alone is often not enough.

-Yes, I discover most of the books I buy from online soures, BUT it's rarely directly from the author. It's more word of mouth via other authors, readers, and book bloggers.

-The authors who I bought based on directly hearing about their book from them are almost 100% people I've already built relationships with online. So they are friends. These were not purchases from random authors who I've never chatted with who just happened to put out a "buy my book!" tweet. That absolutely is white noise to me. I don't pay attention at all unless I already know the person.

 

Now, those are the books I've bought, what about the books I've actually READ?

 

Books discovered via online recommendation by someone other than the author: 17

Books by Favorite/Trusted Authors: 13

Books bought on Sale: 10

Books I heard about directly from the author: 4

Random: 2

Free ebooks: 0

Free print books: 2

Thoughts:

-So even though books on sale got the most buys, they didn't get the most reads. Why is this important? Because a sale gets an author their first buy, but a read gets an author their NEXT buy. And the only FREE books I've read this year are two print books that I got at a conference. I've read 0 of the free ebooks I've downloaded.

-Online recs from book bloggers and online friends I trust clearly are effective for both what I purchase and what I read.

-Favorite authors get moved to the top of the pile for reading. I bought 16 of these and read 13. And the three that are unread are only unread because I just got them. So this is stil the strongest bought to read conversion.

 

Overall: So it looks like YES, my book buying is highly influenced by my online connections. It's the thing that most gets me to buy books because even the sales are discovered via social media. BUT I discover new books and authors through other people not through the author herself. The only books I've bought directly from my connection with the author are people I'd already developed a friendly relationship with.

So what does this mean for authors on social media? 

In my opinion, it means that you should focus on building genuine friendships with people. Trying to sell your books directly to your followers is probably not going to be very effective. But if you build real relationships with people, entertain and help with your blog/tweets/etc., then maybe those people who have gotten to know you will be the people to spread the word on your behalf. And THAT buzz is what actually gets me, as a reader, to buy...and probably many other people as well. But also realize that many, many readers are never going to dial into the online book community, so it's still a small lake in a big ocean. So don't kill yourself trying to be the social media master. Do what you can and write more books.

 

What are your thoughts? Where do you find out about the books you buy? What's your biggest book buying influence?


My Crazy TBR Pile & My Tough Love Rules To Cut It Down

The free books I brought home from RWA Nationals this year - I've read two so far.So this weekend I decided to do a little house cleaning when it came to my books. This involved organizing my Goodreads list into shelves and culling some of the herd. This also meant going through my physical bookshelves and taking inventory of what I haven't read yet. And the numbers, my friends, are rather insane...

Right now, I have exactly 100 unread novels/novellas on my Kindle and over 200 print books on my shelves waiting to be read. 0.0 I knew it was bad, but...well, I didn't realize it was that bad.

And I have a true addiction because I CAN'T STOP BUYING BOOKS. I see someone tweet about something awesome or I see one of those Daily Deal posts and I'm all click, click, click. Buy, buy, buy. Plus, if I have friends or favorite authors that put a new release out, I want to support them and buy it when it comes out. I know the buying won't stop--though I may be putting a lockdown for the month of December since I need to be buying Christmas gifts for someone other than myself. :) But I realized I do need to come up with a plan to start working through some of the books languishing on my real and virtual shelves.

So here's what I'm thinking. I have admitted in the past that I am a chronic finisher. Meaning, I have a really hard time giving up on a book unless the writing is just outright horrible. But this habit slows down my reading. If a book isn't completely sucking me in, I put it down and then don't read other stuff until it's done. Not good.

And even though I've abandoned more books in this past year than I have in the past, I'm still pretty hooked on trying to finish things. But I realized as I'm staring at all these unread books that LIFE IS TOO SHORT and there are too many FANTASTIC books to waste time on a book that's just okay.

So here are my new Tough Love Rules for the coming year:


1. If a book hasn't completely captured me (i.e. I don't want to put it down and can't stop thinking about it) by the end of chapter 3, then I'm moving on. 

As a writer, it's beat into us that we have to hook a reader from page one. I work hard to write books that do that from the first line. So why am I accepting less as a reader? Yes, sometimes page one is hard, but by three chapters, you should have me.

2. If I'm enjoying a book, but I'm just not in the right mood for it at the time, I will move it onto my new "Limbo" shelf on Goodreads.

Sometimes I'm just not in the right headspace for a certain book. For example, it may be a light, fun romance but I'm in a dark mood and want something grittier. It's nothing wrong with the book per se, just not the right time.

3. If there are books on my TBR shelf at this time next year that have been there for at least 2 years, I'm donating them to the library or a hospital. (Or holding a massive blog contest.)

I tend to hoard books. "Ooh, it sounds good. I'll probably read it one day." Yeah, if that hasn't happened in two years, it will probably never get read.

 

We'll see if these three things help me. I'll update next year and let y'all know. And in the meantime, if you want to follow the list of what I read. I'm active on Goodreads and I keep a running list of what I read each year here.

So what's your TBR pile look like? How do you go about picking your next book to read--i.e. is it my method (Ooh! New! Shiny!) or do you have a more organized way to go about it? And how long do you give a book before you move on for good? Anyone else have a "limbo" type shelf?

Ebook or Print: When Do You Buy One Over the Other?

Photo by welcometolearn via Flickr CCSo yesterday Agent Sara put the question out to Twitter about book buying habits, and I briefly butted in on her convo with Miranda Kenneally. Miranda had said she buys print because she loves to put books on her shelves but buys ebooks when impatient. And that got me to thinking what makes me buy one over the other for a particular book.

I'm a reading omnivore both in genre and method. I have a Kindle Fire and love it. I also have a wall of bookshelves in my office that are so packed with print books that I have books stacked on the floor and stuffed around other places in my house. So I don't necessarily favor one over the other.

But then why do I buy book A in print but book B in ebook? Here are some of my reasons. But I'm really curious to hear yours, so I'd love for y'all to let me know in the comments.

When I Buy Ebook:

  • If it's a new to me author, I'll usually try them first in ebook IF the ebook is cheaper than the print.

This is an untested author. I don't have room on my shelves for books I'm not going to want to keep. Plus, I'm going to risk less money on an author I haven't tried before.

 

  • If the book is probably something I'm only going to read once.

This is not saying anything bad about the book. There are just some that are a great ride but not ones I need to go back to necessarily.

 

  • I'm a sucker for Daily Deal ebook sales, so I buy the crap out of those.

I'm a girl. I'm an obsessive reader. The ability to resist a sale, especially on books, is against my genetic makeup. Of course, I do this selectively. I only purchase ones I truly think I'll read or that come recommended.

 

  • If a book is only available in hardback, and I don't want to wait for the paperback to come out.

I don't read hardbacks. It's not even about the price so much as the bulkiness. I don't have room and they're not as easy to tote around.

 

  • If the book is only available in ebook, obviously that's the version I'm buying.

This happens a lot, particularly in my genre. There are so many fantastic digital first publishers out there, plus there's lots of great stuff available in the indie market these days.

 

When I Buy Print:

  • If it's an auto-buy author, who I already love. I'm buying the print, often pre-ordering so that it arrives the day it release.

This is a good risk. They've proven that I like their writing. And for books I love, I want a print copy so I can go back to and read again or reference. This is especially true if it's in my own genre because I like to "study" what other authors do well and why that story worked.

 

  • If the cover is gorgeous.

So I can pet it and stare. Duh.

 

  • If it's a series I plan to stick with.

I've even been known to buy an ebook version, fall in love and then buy the print as well so that I can start buying the series to keep on my shelf.

 

  • If it's non-fiction.

Unless it's a memoir or something, I want to be able to use it as a reference, to be able to flip forward and back with ease, etc. All of my writing craft books are bought in print.

 

  • If the book is LOOOONG, I'm torn.

For some reason, I like seeing progress in a long book that isn't just a percentage on my e-reader. I remember reading Diana Gabaldon's Outlander on my old Kindle and I loved the book, but I remember it feeling longer because of reading on the device. I felt like I was running and not getting anywhere. BUT I've heard the newest e-readers give you more info about time wise how much longer you have, that'd be nice. On the flipside, buying a giant book in print is a pain in the ass because you have to carry this brick around and if it's paperback, it's harder to hold open when it's so thick. 

As for the reading experience...

I love a paper book--the feel of it and such. However, more and more I find myself attracted the convenience of e-reading, especially now that I have an I-phone and can pick up where I left off in a book when I find myself stuck somewhere out and about with nothing to do. So honestly, in my ideal world, there'd be a set up to where you could buy the print and add on the ebook for a dollar or something so that I can read it in print at home but have access to it if I'm on the go or traveling somewhere. Maybe one day that will happen...

But in the meantime, those are some of my convoluted reasons for purchasing one or the other. But regardless of why or when, one thing is for sure. Since I've bought an e-reader, I buy more books overall. I basically haven't changed my print buying at all--I always purchased a lot, but I've added in the ebook buying. So it's probably twice as many books as I used to buy. :)

Now it's your turn: Tell me why you buy an ebook or a print book for a particular story. What makes you pick one over the other? Are there situations where you prefer one format but other times where you prefer the opposite? I want to know! :) 

How Do You Choose Your Books?

 

Image by BrewBooks (click pic for link)

Today I thought we could talk a little about reader loyalty and what makes you buy a book. Like most people, I don't want to spend hard earned money on a book that I don't enjoy. Of course, you can never really guarantee this. It's just like going to the movies--you pick some winners and some duds.

But there are things that we do to raise our chances that we're going to pick something we like. For instance, you find an author you like and continue to buy their new releases because they haven't let you down. 

But how do you decide to buy a book by an author you've never read? Do you pay attention to publishing lines? Like you trust Harlequin Blaze to put out the kind of story you like, so you feel comfortable picking up a book from an unknown author. 

I know I do this. Way before I signed a deal with Berkley Heat, I was a huge Berkley Heat fan girl. I felt confident that if I picked up one of their books, I'd be happy with the story. I also feel secure buying from Harlequin Spice. And I do the same thing with ebooks. Ellora's Cave (digital first erotic pub) has yet to disappoint me, so I gladly will send my dollars their way. And I've discovered some great new authors by putting trust in a publisher.

But I wonder if other readers do this or is this more an author thing (because we pay close attention to who is publishing what).

Also, with the tidal wave of change with the self-publishing digital books thing (especially in my genre), how will that pan out? Will people follow authors who were traditionally pubbed into self-publishing if that author goes there? And how will readers decide to buy a self-pubbed book from an author they've never heard of? Will readers even notice that it's self-pubbed?

I've admittedly been a little afraid of self-pubbed stuff because my few experiences with reading it have been bad, but that was before this big shift. So I'm going to venture out and try a few. But I'll probably base those purchases on reviews by people/websites I trust. We'll see how it goes.

I think the whole change is exciting and I'm interested to see how all of it plays out, but it really does make me curious about how people are going to go about their buying decisions.

So what's your take? How do you choose your books? What makes you take a risk on a new author? Do you pay attention to who published the book? Do you read reviews? I want to know! :)

!!!!!Also, today I am over at Crits for Water where you can enter a drawing to win a query critique from me. All you have to do is donate $5 to a fabulous charity that provides water for people in underdeveloped countries. Go here and make a difference (and maybe win!): /blog/2011/5/19/how-do-you-choose-your-books.html