Sunday, June 30, 2013

Get Ignited With Kaylea Cross

I'm thrilled to announce the release of the first book of my new Titanium Security romantic suspense series! The series will consist of at least four books, each with a hero from a different military background as follows:
  • Ignited (out now) features a former Navy SEAL
  • Singed (releasing in August) features a former SF (Green Beret) master sergeant
  • Burned (releasing late fall) features a former FORECON Marine
  • Book 4 (title TBA, releasing early 2014) features a former Marine Scout/Sniper
Blurb: When her father is murdered by a Taliban cell in the tribal regions of Pakistan, Khalia Patterson reluctantly steps into his shoes to carry on the legacy of Fair Start Foundation, a non-profit group dedicated to furthering the education of girls. There she meets Hunter Phillips, the ex-SEAL and head of her Titanium security team, and quickly learns that coming to Pakistan might prove to be a deadly decision.
Battling demons of his own, Hunter grudgingly leads Khalia’s protective detail  as a favor to his boss. From their first meeting it’s clear she’s going to be trouble, and that the cell that killed her father is hell bent on taking her out as well. Keeping her alive is one of the toughest assignments he’s ever faced, yet through one harrowing situation after another she continually impresses him with her strength and inner courage. Even though he fights his feelings for her, it’s a losing battle. And when the job is over, he doesn’t know how he’ll let her go.
Length: 83,000 words
Available now for $2.99 at:

Hope you enjoy the start of this new action packed series! I'm sure having fun writing it. 

Happy reading,
Kaylea Cross
Kaylea Cross writes edge-of-your-seat military romantic suspense. Her work has won many awards and has been nominated for both the Daphne du Maurier and the National Readers’ Choice Awards. A Registered Massage Therapist by trade, Kaylea is also an avid gardener, artist, Civil War buff, Special Ops aficionado, belly dance enthusiast and former nationally-carded softball pitcher. She lives in Vancouver, BC with her family. You can find Kaylea through her website, Twitter, Facebook, and her blog.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Summer Reads

I don’t know where you guys are, but where I am (North Texas), it was a hundred degrees at 9:00 last night. That’s pretty hot. And it’s no wonder there’s not much in the way of outdoor activities in my neck of the woods. Which means it’s the perfect excuse to sit in an air conditioned room and read a good book.

I’ve been on vacation since the beginning of June. At least a quasi-vacation. It’s almost impossible for me to not work at all. I’d get so far behind I’d never get caught up. But what I have been doing with my self-enforced free time is to catch up on my reading. I’ve read more than twenty books this month, and it’s felt wonderful. I used to read that much all the time before the writing life took over, but now I hardly have any time for the simple pleasure of reading.

This is a military blog, and I’ll eventually get to that partJ But it’s summer so we should have a little bit of fun. What has been your favorite summer read so far? How about I give away a $10 Amazon, B&N, or iTunes gift card to someone who shares their answer in the comments below? It’ll be enough to purchase a new book to enjoy.

Now on to the military part of the blog—One of my summer releases, Kill Shot, happens to be a romantic thriller with a whole team of special ops agents with military and other kinds of specialized training. The thing I enjoyed about writing this book the most was that my hero and heroine were already married. Kind of. I got to explore what happens later in a marriage, which is something most romance writers never get to do. This couple also happens to have a very deadly set of skills. A blogger reviewed this book as being Mr. and Mrs. Smith meets The Tourist.

Grace Meredith is the CIA's most deadly assassin. Too bad she's gone off the grid and become a mercenary for hire. After the death of her daughter by a sniper's bullet, Grace can no longer stomach the demands of agency life or keep herself from blaming the only man she's ever loved. Her mind and body are fragile, and she knows she's just a step away from breaking down completely. 

Gabe Brennan holds the weight of the world on his shoulders. As one of the most brilliant black ops agents the CIA has ever employed, he knows it's no one's fault but his own that his child was gunned down in cold blood. He might not have been able to save his daughter, but he's determined to save his wife. He only has to find her first.

I hope you’ll check out Kill Shot as one of you summer reads. Stay cool out there!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

History Weaves a Tender Thread

Sometimes when I think of all the events in the world that have taken place so I could enjoy my life here in California, making a living writing romance of all things, and Military Romance (Yes, I capitalized it. Put away your red pen) in particular, I truly think I am living some miracle existence my ancestors could never imagine.

We all have family stories, and many of us, like me, have family members who have served their country in one form or another. As the 4th of July comes upon us, we reflect what it means to be a nation, and remember those who paid the ultimate sacrifice so we could have the lifestyle we have today. Far from being right or left politically, what is great about this country is the service so many have given for us all. And it's been said by philosophers over the centuries, that a people who forget where they came from will soon have nothing left worth defending.

My great-great grandfather came to the United States during the Civil War to fight for the Union Army, and obtain citizenship. This was offered to many from Europe, especially the British Isles. He was a young single man, a volunteer firefighter, who was involved in the miller's business and knew a young McCall lad who thought some day women might want to make their own clothes. Sadly, although A.C. Cameron was smart enough to come to the United States, he wasn't smart enough to go into business with Mr. McCall.

His brother had emigrated earlier, was married, had a family and had been a police Superintendent from Berwick-on-Tweed. Daniel became a General in the Union Army. He would later go on to run a prison for confederate prisoners of war in Chicago. His letters to then President Grant, complaining of the lack of funds and indecent conditions almost cost him his commission. I actually found copies of them when I was Googling our family history for a project I was working on. Here is a brief description I found:

Civil War Union Brevet Brigadier General. He came to America in 1851 with his family and settled in Wheeling, Cook County, Illinois. In 1853, he moved to Chicago and was associated with several newspapers as a publisher. At the outbreak of the Civil War, he enlisted in the Union Army, raised the 65th Illinois Infantry known as the "Scotch Regiment" and was composed exclusively of men from Chicago and Cook County. He was the commander of Camp Douglas from February of 1862 until June when he was then ordered to join the Army of the Potomac and the defense of Washington.

General Dan died in 1879. My great-great grandfather went on to work in the publishing business and met a young girl from Scotland, who had come over to work for a wealthy family living on Dearborn Avenue in Chicago. Everything she owned was in a box her father made for her, plus something else.

I had been going through some old photos and papers I needed to file away, and came across this piece about General Daniel Cameron. The top of the piece is in my grandmother's handwriting. The side note is in my mother's, which is probably too small to read. She makes note of a box Eliza brought with her from Scotland. And two rosewood chairs.

I don't know why my mother never told me the story of this chair before she passed. Or, maybe she did and I just forgot. But what sent a chill down my spine is that I was sitting in this very chair as I read this recount in my mother's handwriting for the very first time.

I'm fascinated by history, especially the stories of those who helped make this a great nation. From my bedroom window, I can see seven different fireworks displays on the 4th.

And this year, I'll be sitting in Eliza's chair as I do so. 

Sharon’s award-winning spicy Navy SEAL stories in the SEAL Brotherhood series, have consistently made best sellers lists and review sites. Her characters follow a sometimes rocky road to redemption through passion and true love.

She lives in Sonoma County, California with her husband, and two Dobermans. A lifelong organic gardener, when she’s not writing, she’s getting vera vera dirty in the mud, or wandering Farmer’s Markets looking for new Heirloom varieties of vegetables and flowers.

Book 3 of her SEAL series, SEAL Under Covers, will release the end of July.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

What was the inspiration behind, My Boogie Woogie Bugle Guy?

At night in the summer and fall, you can sit out on my porch and hear the bagpipes play. Whoever the mystery player is, they play for several hours, and the melodies are beautiful, lulling my muse into another time and place.

But it’s not the only instrument my bagpipe player plays. Sometimes in the morning, a trumpet sounds revelry. The first time I heard it at oh five hundred, I hopped up and raced to my son’s room. He’d enlisted in the Army, and was to leave for basic training in a couple of months. It had been so long since I’d heard it, and well, I was excited. Five in the morning? Yeah, I know, why didn’t you go down the road and stuff that trumpet some place...ah, well, it brought back memories—memories anyone who’s been in the military could appreciate. It made my heart pound, and the blood flow. It was time to start my day.

“Do you hear that?”
“Hear what?”

I opened his window and there it was. “Wake up.”
“Uh huh. You’ve got to be kidding me. You got me up for that?” he says as he pulls a pillow over his head.

“Get used to it, son,” says I, as I yank the pillow away. “It’s the Army’s wake up call.”
His response was to glare for a moment, roll over and pull the sheet over his head.

Kids! He has since learned the value of hauling butt when you hear that trumpet.
Anyway, back to my bagpipe/trumpet player. He inspires stories and makes me smile, and yes I leave the window open so I can hear him in the morning. He was the major inspiration behind my novella, My Boogie Woogie Bugle Guy.

In My Boogie Woogie Bugle Guy, Sgt. Frank Winters is an Army trumpet player whose been set up on a date by a buddy who was later killed in combat. Determined to see his friend’s final wishes through, he rides across country to find Grace Daniels, his date for a big band party the following evening. Except, he doesn't know where she lives, leading to a very unconventional first meeting.
Here’s the blurb:
When Grace Daniels goes to the cemetery to visit the grave of her twin brother, she meets a soldier, there for the same reason, or at least that’s what she believes until he tells her about the blind date her brother arranged before he was killed in combat.

It’s the date of her dreams. Big band, brass and sass, Madame Eve from 1NightStand has set her up for an unforgettable night, a WWII swing dance party. Unfortunately, she’s having trouble letting go of her past and is afraid to take the chance given to her.

Sergeant Frank Winters is an Army trumpet player who travels with the Color Guard, a great dancer, and six feet four inches of eye candy that could make her an addict. He’s also a soldier and soldiers can get killed. Grace doesn’t have the heart to lose someone again, but Frank knows a good thing when he sees it, and he’s determined to show her in one night, she’s got more to lose if she walks away.

And an excerpt....
“For my next number, I’m gonna play something a little more laid back.” A slurry voice rang out over the headstones, echoing through what was supposed to be a closed graveyard. A trumpet began to play. Dah, dah, dum. Dah, dah, squawk.

She bolted up. “What the hell?” Believing she was alone, she’d bared her soul to her brother. She certainly wouldn’t have had that conversation if she’d known someone lingered nearby. She turned around three hundred and sixty degrees, until her gaze landed on a mausoleum backlit by the moon. A man stood on the roof with brass to his lips, butchering Taps. In his other hand, he held a bottle of what was probably in the glass on Geordie’s grave.

Grace swatted the debris from her pants and stomped toward the mausoleum, irritation prickling over the back of her neck. She stopped at the base of the stone structure and glared at the man on the roof. “What are you doing here at three in the morning? The cemetery is closed.”
“Whoa, hot chick in the audience.” He swayed, threatening to fall off the roof. “Feel free to toss your panties onto the stage in appreciation.”

She clicked her flashlight on and cast the beam at him. “I suggest you get down from there before you fall, or I have to arrest you for public intoxication.”
He gave her a shit-eating grin. “You got handcuffs?”

“Oh, God,” she groaned under her breath. “Of course I’ve got handcuffs. I’m the police.”
He rocked and blinked his eyes. “You’re hot for a cop.”

“Thank you, I think. Now get down.”
“Okay.” He jumped, hit the edge of the roof, rolled off, and dropped like a stone at her feet, doing it with all the grace of a bag of potatoes. Yet he’d managed to keep hold of the bottle and not spill a drop. He put the horn to his lips and blew, but nothing more than a raspberry came from the mouthpiece. “For my next number, I’m going to play….” He looked up at her. “Any requests?”

“Yeah, tell me where you’re staying, so I can take you to your room.”
“Easy, girl. What kind of guy do you think I am?”

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you’ll check out My Boogie Woogie Bugle Guy. As for my bagpipe player, I found out who he is. He’s a retired Army Chaplain that plays the bagpipes and trumpet for hero’s funerals around the state. Now when I hear the music floating over the hills and fields, I have an even deeper appreciation for it.

D.L. Jackson

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Heroes Goes to France and Poland!

by Laura Kaye

I'm very excited to share that the first two books in my Heroes series have sold to France and Poland! Her Forbidden Hero has already released in both countries, and One Night with a Hero will release in France in August and in Poland later this year! One of the most fun things about foreign sales are seeing the different countries' representations of the stories through the cover art. Here's what I mean:

The original cover is a great representation of Marco, from the tortured posture to the lean musculature. The French cover is a great representation of Alyssa, right down to her hair, her clothing, and the guitar. The Polish cover is...I don't even know what! LOL Very artistic, that much I can say. But also, erm, weird? But...if it means that Marco and Alyssa get a broader audience around the world, I can hardly complain! Plus, my third grader who is taking French took the paperback to school to show her French teacher, who got a total kick out of telling me she, of course, didn't read any of it to the class! *grins*
Her Forbidden Hero in U.S. Amazon | B&N | Print
Her Forbidden Hero in France at
Her Forbidden Hero in Poland
One Night with a Hero's Brady Scott also went on a world tour, though I only have the Polish cover to share so far!

Once again, the U.S. cover is a great representation for the hero, Brady Scott, from his blond hair to his muscles to his cut jaw. It also represents the heat and passion in this book, which as the name suggests opens with what's supposed to be a one night stand. The Polish cover is interestingly a decent representation of the book's heroine, Joss Daniels, and the sensuality of the story. But, seriously, this publisher owes me a set of silk sheets, I think! LOL Now, I can't wait to see what they come up with in France!
One Night with a Hero in U.S. Amazon | B&N | Print
One Night with a Hero pre-order in France at
One Night with a Hero pre-order in Poland
What do you think? Thanks for reading!


Laura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of a dozen books in contemporary and paranormal romance. Growing up, Laura’s large extended family believed in the supernatural, and family lore involving angels, ghosts, and evil-eye curses cemented in Laura a life-long fascination with storytelling and all things paranormal. She lives in Maryland with her husband, two daughters, and cute-but-bad dog, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Military Men, Motorcycles and the Apocalypse by Stephanie Tyler

I have a ton of reasons for loving and writing milrom.  Some of them stem from family and friends who serve, some because I think that men and women who will sacrifice themselves to protect me are a special breed of person and that fascinates me.  I really enjoy the genre and the testosterone, alphaness, adrenaline rush that goes with it. 

And even though I write across genres (straight romantic suspense, paranormal romance, erotica PNR and most recently, new adult) all my main characters have some link to the military.  My immortal Dire Wolves, for example, have all served in the military in some form or another since…well, for centuries J 

So when I started thinking about writing my newest release, Defiance, I knew I wanted it to center around a motorcycle club.  I mean, that part of the story came to me instantly (because that’s another thing you’ll pretty much find in all my books—someone’s always riding a Harley) but for me, the most important part of that equation was making the MC truly military based.  From what I’ve read, many of the earliest MCs were born from vets returning from war.  The clubs allowed them to ride for pleasure (something many of them learned to do in the military) and gave them a sense of brotherhood, while also giving them their adrenaline rush back.

Defiance is a post apocalyptic New Adult MC book (and yes, that’s a mouthful) – and the Defiance MC was founded by Navy submariners who were also doomsday preppers before that became a hot reality TV topic.   It was important to me to have most of the men in the club as having served at one point or another—I think it gives the club a unique perspective and probably makes them better equipped to survive and thrive through what I’ve dubbed the Chaos. 

So today, I’m going to give away 2 copies of Defiance (either Kindle or Nook, since I can gift from there!) –to be eligible, just tell me the last book you read!  I’ll leave the contest open all day and pick winners in the morning!

You can find out more about Defiance—and check out all my series at!

Defiance:  (Defiance Book 1)

Rebelling against her legacy as the MC's princess, Tru Tennyson escaped the ruthless, male-dominated culture of the Defiance motorcycle club. Three years later, her newfound freedom is ripped away, thanks to a massive hybrid storm that killed millions. Now, in the post-Chaos world of semi-darkness and near-total anarchy where gangs rule, she discovers the dangerous world of Defiance may be the one thing that can keep her safe.

Tru is at the MC's mercy when she's dragged back to her former home … and to the only man she's ever pictured a future with. Caspar is the bastard son of the club's leader, her safe haven when life got rough — and her onetime lover the night she left. When Tru refuses to trade sex for power and be claimed by a rival club leader, she also dares to announce she wants Caspar instead, throwing the MC into turmoil.

 Tru's brazen revolt could start a gang war and destroy the club from within. Now both Tru and the MC must wait for Caspar's response… and the inevitable fallout.