A Killer Past (And A Giveaway)

Join me in welcoming Maris Soule to the blog today! Her book, A KILLER PAST, is being re-released a an ebook, and I’m very excited!

Plus, I’ll be doing a little giveaway, which you can enter below.

Maris, thanks for celebrating the ebook reissue of A KILLER PAST with us today.

Thank you, Alyssa, for inviting me to announce the re-issuing of A KILLER PAST as an eBook. For the past two years I’ve been checking Amazon and the other on-line bookstores, hoping to see A KILLER PAST once again available as an eBook. Every time I looked, the only buy option was for the paperback edition. Which is great, if the reader wants to buy a paperback, but not so great if the reader prefers eBooks or buys them because it’s easier to carry an eReader than a stack of books.

I loved writing this book. It’s my answer to the question: What would someone who was an assassin in her twenties be like in her seventies?

This is Mary Harrington’s story.

For forty-four years Mary, now a widow, has been living in Rivershore, a small, rural town in southwest Michigan. No one knows about her past, and that’s the way she wants to keep it. Over the years she married Harry Harrington, the local dentist, and raised a son, Robert, who is a financial advisor and overly concerned about his mother’s ability to take care of herself. Robert’s wife Clare, who is into genealogy, wants to know more about Mary’s family. Problem is the family she’s told them about never existed. Also, Mary’s eighteen-year-old granddaughter, Shannon, wants Mary to take her to Paris, and Mary knows that would be a big mistake.

Her hope for anonymity ends the night before Halloween, when her car breaks down two blocks from her house and two gang members try to mug her. She should have simply let them take her purse. Instead, Mary discovers she hasn’t forgotten the months of training she went through in her twenties.

As Detective Jack Rossini investigates the incident, Mary denies being the one who put the two boys in the hospital; nevertheless, he’s sure she was involved, and the more he comes in contact with Mary, the more he’s convinced she’s hiding something, especially when his inquiries result in an order from the FBI to drop his investigation.

As I wrote A KILLER PAST, I had fun researching the types of weapons Mary would have been trained to use as an assassin. I then had to figure out if she could (or should) try to use them to protect herself as she faced the gang members looking for retaliation and a man from her past who wants her dead. Her afternoon practicing with the kubotan she’s had hidden in her cellar for forty-four years was fun to write. The weapon left her with several bruises which she has trouble explaining to her son, who already thinks she needs to move into a retirement home.

Available Now As An Ebook!

If you’d like to read about Mary Harrington and her efforts to keep her past a secret and yet survive, it’s now available now as an ebook or as a paperback.

Or read for free with Kindle Unlimited!


To celebrate the release of A KILLER PAST as an ebook, I’m giving away an ebook copy of THE CROWS, A PJ Benson Mystery. All you have to do to enter is tell me your favorite mystery book or movie. That’s it!

Open to US and International entrants 18 years or older. Winner to be chosen by random . org on Thursday, October 29.

About Maris Soule

Maris Soule has had thirty books published, ranging from romance and romantic suspense to mystery and thriller. Over the years, her books have won and placed in more than a dozen contests. Born and raised in California, she was working on a master’s degree in art history when she met and married her husband. She taught high school art and math for eight years before turning to writing full time. The Soules, who have two grown children and two granddaughters, now live in Michigan in the summer and Florida in the winter.

Visit her at: https://www.marissoule.com

Or find her on social media:

Lawman? Outlaws? Romance? Count me in!

Happy Release Day to Rosanne Bittner!

Author of over 60 books (might be over 70 now), many of them westerns, Rosanne is a prolific writer and proponent of the romance genre. Today she has a new book out, LAWMAN IN THE HIGH LONESOME. It’s the second book in the Outlaw Series, which features the infamous Outlaw Trail that runs along the Rockies from Montana to New Mexico, occupied mostly by outlaws from the late 1860’s through the early 1900’s.

LAWMAN IN THE HIGH LONESOME is a stand alone book, so you don’t need to read the first book in the series, but if you want to pick it up, RIDE THE HIGH LONESOME is available here!

Civil War widow Elly Lowe is heading for California after losing everything in a prairie fire. She and her family need a new start. On the way, fate interrupts Elly’s plans in a horrifying way, leaving her desperate for help.

In a small Nebraska town, Sheriff Matt Stover grieves the loss of his wife and unborn child in a bank robbery. He has always lived by the law, but he is determined to find and kill the guilty Liberty brothers. Matt sets out to follow the culprits into notorious Outlaw Country, very dangerous territory for a lawman.

When Matt meets Elly along the way, they strike up a sweet friendship, an attraction they know is only temporary. They must go their separate ways, but they will meet again under very different circumstances, leaving Matt to face life or death situations. Will lawman Matt Stover turn outlaw for revenge? Or will Elly’s faith and devotion be enough to bring him peace?

Greek Gods? I’m In!

Have you ever met someone and known, within five minutes, that your souls had met before? That’s how it was for Kerri and I. We went on a mini-retreat with another writer who is a mutual friend, but we didn’t know each other. Yet almost as soon as we met in person, I felt as if I’d known her forever.

We bonded, Kerri and I, over a prosthetic leg toilet paper holder (no lie, see pic) and marshmallow champagne stoppers (also no lie, see pic) and choking on Brussel sprouts (don’t have a pic for that one) and tripping while acting out a book scene (no pic for that, either, thank goodness. That was me!). By the end of the weekend, I’d written something along the lines of 8k and made a life-long friend.

Prosthetic Leg Toilet Paper Holder
Not Lying
When you need a champagne cork…

So I would like to introduce you to Kerri Keberly, author of BUSINESS OF LOVE, a book in which the Greek gods have day jobs. If you have not read this book, YOU MUST.

Alyssa: Tell me about BUSINESS OF LOVE. What inspired you?

Kerri: First, thanks for having me on your blog! Second, I’m glad you don’t have a pic of me choking on Brussel sprouts (That one was me, folks!).

The Eros & Co. series blends heart, humor, and magic into every story. It takes Greek mythology and gives it a modern day twist—think gods with day jobs! In the first book, The Business of Love, Cupid’s performance is declining big time, so he’s given an ultimatum by the king of the gods, Zeus. He must bind the hearts of two mortal enemies or he loses his immortality. No problem, Cupid’s got this, right? Hint: Not so much.

Alyssa: I heard tell Apollo is getting his own story soon. In fact, I might have read his story (this is what is awesome about being critique partners, you get to read things before everyone else!). Gimme a little about him.

Kerri: Yes! Book two, Mergers & Acquisitions (Releasing January 3rd!), centers around Apollo, Daphne (the nymph he’s been cursed to forever chase), and their discovery about what it really means to love and be loved. What can I say about Apollo? He’s Mount Olympus’s shining victor. Killer abs, sharp dresser, never a hair out of place  . . . Basically, he’s the god of every damn thing and he knows it. The only problem is he’s always too busy hogging the spotlight to realize that being worshiped doesn’t hold a candle to being loved.

Alyssa: OK, so let’s nerd out a bit. Why Greek gods, and what’s your favorite myth?

Kerri: I’ve always loved mythology, folklore, and fairy tales. My first story was a retelling of the little mermaid somewhere around the first or second grade. I’m enamored with magic, and I think all of my stories include some form of magical element because of it.

For this particular series, I was flipping through one of my many reference books on Greek mythology, and when I came to one of my absolute favorites, the myth of Eros and Psyche when an idea hit me: What if they broke up and Cupid’s heart was broken?

Because I love irony and had worked in an advertising agency for years, I also thought: What if Cupid had a day job? What would happen if he had to bind hearts even though his heart was hurting? The rest, as they say, is history.

Some of my other favorite Greek myths include Artemis and Actaeon, Apollo and Daphne, and Echo and Narcissus, Medusa . . . Who am I kidding? They are all my favorite!

Alyssa: Last but not least, you have a prequel to BUSINESS OF LOVE exclusively for newsletter subscribers. What is that about?

Kerri: Oh, yes, the prequel! This was a fun one to write. Aside from suffering from a broken heart, there is another big reason why Eros loses his mojo. In book one, he must bind the hearts of Liz and Leo, two souls he’s been trying to get together for centuries. Much to the dismay of The Fates, he’s missed his mark every time. The prequel, Behind Schedule, is what happens in each of Liz and Leo’s lifetimes.

Now for the lightning round I always force, ahem, ask authors to answer!

Ready? Set? Go!

Blue jeans or party clothes? Blue Jeans.

Sushi or steak? Steak.

Cats or dogs? (Or hamsters?) Cats. Although, my cat is evil so hamsters.

Beer, wine or water? Water.

Coke or Pepsi? (If you answer Pepsi I hereby disown you. Ask my father.) Coke.

Favorite color? Purple.

Favorite word? You know, I don’t think I have a favorite word . . . unless @$%! counts?

Least favorite word? Veggies. As in shortening the word, not eating them.

Coffee or tea? Coffee, iced.

And last but not least…Favorite character trait in your significant other? (Mr. Alexander says my most endearing quality is my ability to talk. He also says it’s my most irritating quality). There are many, but my favorite is his sensitivity.

You can sign up for Kerri’s free prequel here:


And check out the BUSINESS OF LOVE, which I love, here:



Kerri has always told tall tales. When she was in the third grade, she hid her glasses in the linen closet and told her mother a ghost must have stolen them. As you might imagine, that story didn’t end well. Today, however, she tells more lighthearted tales, with happier endings. Fond of making people laugh, and forever a fan of folklore and mythology, she blends heart and humor with a dash of magic into her stories. Kerri lives in Michigan with her husband, son and cat they lovingly but aptly refer to as The Maleficence, Mel for short.

Twitter: @Superkeek

Facebook: Kerri Keberly Author

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kerrikeberly/

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/kerri-keberly

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18613739.Kerri_Keberly

Amazon: amazon.com/author/kerrikeberly

A Duke-a-licious Sample

On April 16 (next Tuesday, woo hoo!) DUKES BY THE DOZEN will be live! And to whet your appetite, I’ve got a little sneak peek from of one of the novellas in the anthology. I’ve been sharing on them on my Facebook Page, and playing along in our Dukes By The Dozen Facebook group as well. If you haven’t, be sure to join us for information on giveaways coming up in the next few days!

In the meantime, read below for an excerpt from DEAR DUKE, by Anna Harrington!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2GdQPHB

Barnes & Noble: https://bit.ly/2RUkaPQ

Kobo: https://bit.ly/2Gp6SVs

iBooks: https://apple.co/2TSGiLi

Dear Duke

Anna Harrington


John, Duke of Monmouth, has no idea that the anonymous pen pal who has stolen his heart is the same woman standing between him and his new canal…


Good God, he was nervous! Surrounded by a sea of masked guests inside Bishopswood’s ballroom, John tugged once more at the sleeves of his black kerseymere jacket.

He nearly laughed at himself. When had he ever been nervous about a woman before in his life? In his younger days, he’d bedded more women than he could remember, sharing in all kinds of pleasures with down-to-earth women from the markets, inns, and villages. In more recent years, he’d been too busy with his business to spend much time in pursuit of the women of the gentility that his new money brought him into contact with. Since he’d inherited, though, it was society ladies who vied to capture his attention, those women who were more than eager to raise their skirts for a wealthy duke. He rejected those ladies outright, knowing he’d find no pleasure in them, because they wanted to be with the title and not with the man.

But the woman who pinned those notes to the tree knew nothing about his title or his status as one of England’s most powerful men. He suspected that she wouldn’t care even if she did. At least he hoped she wouldn’t, preferring the true man he was. God knew how much he liked her.

If she were half as beautiful in person as she was in her letters, he feared that she might also capture his heart.

He snatched a glass of champagne from the tray of a passing footman, more so he could continue to take glances toward the top of the stairs over the rim than for the drink itself. His eyes hadn’t strayed far from the landing all night, although how he would know her when she arrived, costumed and hidden behind her mask, he had no idea. He only prayed that he would. And that she would come at all. When he’d returned to the tree to seek her response, the invitation was gone, but she’d left no reply. Nor did she write even once during the past week.

Since then, he’d kicked himself repeatedly that he’d pressed her to meet, fearing he’d gone too far. Would he ever hear from her again?

Quashing his worry, he watched as the parade of new arrivals appeared on the landing and handed their invitations to the Master of Ceremonies, who announced them based upon their costume. Tonight was a true masquerade, with all identities hidden until the midnight unmasking. He’d insisted on it. For a few precious hours he wanted to be nothing more than one of the crowd, so that he could enjoy the party himself before they set upon him like locusts in their rush to curry his favor. Most of all, he wanted time to enjoy the company of the woman who had written all those letters.

He had no idea what his secret authoress would look like or what costume she’d wear. If she’d appear at all. But he knew he’d feel her presence when she arrived, the way old sailors felt oncoming storms.

White flashed at the top of the stairs. His gaze darted to the landing—


A low tingle rose inside him as he watched her give her invitation to the Master of Ceremonies. His breath hitched with nervous anticipation despite a soft chuckle to himself as her name was announced. Lady Swan. A graceful, gliding vision in white silk and feathers, one in perfect opposition to the black clothes of his panther, of her softness and elegance to his hardness.

Meeting her gaze across the room, he held out his hand toward her in invitation, as if she were only a few feet from him rather than across the grand ballroom. The party faded away around them until it was only the two of them. No one else in the room mattered.

She drew in a nervous breath, her slender shoulders stiff. Then a smile spread beneath her white satin half-mask, and she moved on, gliding down the remaining stairs and into the crowd which parted around her as she came to him.

Wordlessly, she slipped her trembling hand into his. He raised it to his lips, unable to resist this small kiss, then led her forward to the dance floor, to take her into his arms and twirl her into the waltz.

**Giveaway** with Diane Burton

Please join me in welcoming Diane Burton! Diane is the author of sci-fi romance and mysteries, her latest being NUMBERS NEVER LIE, a romantic suspense, which released Monday, July 9th. Be sure to enter the celebratory Rafflecopter giveaway below!

I’ve known Diane for about 10 years, as she’s a long time member of the Mid-Michigan Romance Writers of America. She’s also one my favorite people in the whole wide world, so, without further delay…


What is your favorite aspect of writing?

First, let me say thank you for having me here today, Alyssa. Your intro was so sweet. I’ve loved our chats during lunch, especially when we compare notes on your son and my grandson, who are close in age. I don’t usually read historical romances, but I love your books. Once started, I can’t put them down.

My favorite aspect of writing is the inspiration. An idea will pop in my head—usually, right before going to sleep—and I can’t wait to get to the computer to write.


I know Mamas are not supposed to have favorites, but what is your favorite Book Baby, and why?

I always say it’s the book I’m writing at the moment. Truthfully—and don’t tell the other books—my favorite is my first published book, Switched, a science fiction romance. I wrote it for fun because I’d given up on writing for publication. That feeling disappeared when the publisher of a small niche press, ImaJinn, offered me a contract.


If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

I’m living there already. When Hubs job took us from Kalamazoo to Chicago, I made him promise we’d retire along the west coast of Michigan. Then our daughter and her family (our only grandchildren at the time) moved to West Michigan, close to Lake Michigan, I was thrilled. We built a house there, then last summer our son and his family moved here from Arizona. For the first time in twenty years, my family was altogether. What more could I ask?


Tell our readers one thing about yourself they probably don’t know.

I went to Hawaii all by myself. I was single, and a friend was supposed to go with me. When she bailed, I toured by myself. I even drove the Hana Road on Maui—that is scarier now than at the time. Still, that narrow road along the coast was pretty scary. I saw the sun rise at Haleakala. On my bucket list is a trip back there with Hubs along.


Tell us a little about the book:

I started Numbers Never Lie (final and best title, though I went through many) about fifteen years ago. Life intruded (as it can), and I put it aside. Issues with our mothers drained me of all creativity. This winter, I picked it up again and remembered how much I loved the story of Maggie, her brother Jack, and their friend Drew. What started as a fun camping trip—for Maggie, her group of 14-year-old girls, and Drew—ended with a devastating phone call.


And since I have you trapped, let’s do a little lightning round of fun questions. Ready? Set? Go!

Blue jeans or party clothes? Blue jeans
Sushi or steak? Steak, although my grandkids took me out for sushi. Not bad.
Cats or dogs? (Or hamsters?) Definitely dogs. We’ve had three.
Beer, wine or water? Water. An occasional sip of wine.
Coke or Pepsi? (If you answer Pepsi I hereby disown you. Ask my father.) Diet Coke! No disowning.
Favorite color? Blue
Favorite word? Nana
Least favorite word? Can’t
Coffee or tea? Coffee

And last but not least…Favorite character trait in your significant other? (Mr. Alexander says my most endearing quality is my ability to talk. He also says it’s my most irritating quality).

Patience. We’ve been married for 46 years (at Thanksgiving). To stay with me that long took/takes a lot of patience. He’s also the biggest supporter of my writing.

Many thanks, Alyssa, for helping me share my newest release.


A Romantic Suspense
By Diane Burton
Romantic Suspense
Length: approx. 80,000 words
Available at Amazon  http://a.co/gUmO9wZ
Free with Kindle Unlimited

A shocking secret brings danger to Jack Sinclair and his sister Maggie.

As kids, they were the fearless threesome. As adults, Jack’s an accountant; Drew, a lawyer; Maggie, a teacher and camping troop leader. Upon returning from a weekend camping trip, Maggie receives horrifying news. She refuses to believe her brother Jack’s fatal car crash was an accident. If the police won’t investigate, she’ll do it herself. Convincing Drew Campbell to help is her only recourse.

Drew Campbell was too busy to return his best friend’s phone call. Too busy to attend a camping meeting important to his teen daughter. Too busy to stay in touch with Jack. Logic and reason indicate Jack’s accident was just that–an accident caused by fatigue and fog. Prodded by guilt, he’ll help Maggie even if he thinks she’s wrong.

A break-in at Jack’s condo convinces Maggie she’s right. Then her home is searched. What did Jack do that puts Maggie in danger?


Now for a little excerpt…

Maggie clapped her hands. “Girls, break time is over.”

The Drill Sergeant was back. Hup, two, three, four.

Groans from the girls met her announcement. Drew knew exactly how they felt.

His legs ached, a blister—no, make that two blisters—had already formed on both sides of his heels. Ellen had warned him not to wear brand-new hiking boots. But he always wore the appropriate footwear. He had golf shoes, tennis shoes, ski boots, and now hiking boots. A pair of bloody hiking boots.

Damn, he needed to take a leak. He never should have stopped at 7-11 for a Big Gulp of coffee no matter how much caffeine he required to start his engine this morning. Ellen warned him it wasn’t a good idea. He should have listened.

Jack would be laughing his head off if he knew Drew was actually hiking and camping. Both Jack and Maggie had inherited their parents’ enthusiasm for camping. Drew shuddered. Not him. After that disastrous Cub Scout campout, Drew vowed never again to venture into the wild.

Still, when Ellen begged him, he thought a little hike in the woods would be the perfect opportunity for some father-daughter bonding. This trip was not turning out the way he anticipated.

Ellen surrounded herself with her friends, staying as far away from Drew as possible. With the exception of their brief conversation a few minutes ago—and only after he’d pulled her aside to ask about the facilities—she barely talked to him. So much for father-daughter bonding. All he had to show for his efforts was a stitch in his side, a charley horse in his left leg, those bloody blisters, and chafing from his new jeans. His deceased wife thought jeans were low-class. Since they weren’t allowed on the country club golf course, they hadn’t been part of his extensive wardrobe until his quick trip to Meijer’s at six this morning. The mega-store had everything he needed.

When Drew returned from his visit behind a large tree, he saw a couple of girls coming out of the woods on the other side of the path. They joined the waiting group, while Drew waited in the background. After Maggie glanced at him, he knew he was in for it, retaliation for him missing the meeting. She’d bided her time. Here it came. Another lecture.

“Mr. Campbell, you may lead for a while,” Maggie directed. “I’ll bring up the rear and make sure—” She dropped her sunglasses down her nose and looked over the steel rims at the girls. “—we don’t lose anyone.”

The girls giggled and lined up. Drew straightened his shoulders despite the backpack cutting into them. He was certain Ellen had loaded the pack with rocks. Leading wasn’t that bad.

All right. He could do this. He was a man, not a wus. He could tough it out. He would not embarrass his daughter. He’d make her proud of him. Just put one foot in front of the other . . . and try not to wince.

“Mr. Campbell, it’s okay to go faster,” one of the girls said. “We can keep up.”


Be sure to enter the release week giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Numbers Never Lie is available at Amazon.

About the Author:

Diane Burton combines her love of mystery, adventure, science fiction and romance into writing romantic fiction. Besides writing science fiction romance, she writes romantic suspense, and cozy mysteries. Diane and her husband live in West Michigan. They have two children and five grandchildren.


For more info and excerpts from her books, visit Diane’s website: http://www.dianeburton.com

Blog:  http://dianeburton.blogspot.com/
Twitter:  http://twitter.com/dmburton72
Facebook:  http://facebook.com/dianeburtonauthor
Goodreads: Diane Burton Author
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/dmburton72/
Sign up for Diane’s new release alert: http://eepurl.com/bdHtYf