Vicki Tharp Giveaway!

“Tharp is a talented, observant writer with a knack for taking us inside her characters’ heads, no matter how unsavory.”    –Kirkus Reviews

Born with a love for animals, Vicki Tharp pursued a career as a veterinarian, graduating from Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine in 1992. Always an avid reader of romance, mystery, and suspense, she combined her interests and medical knowledge in her book, Don’t Look Back.

She makes her home on small acreage in south Texas with her husband and an embarrassing number of pets. When she isn’t writing, trimming hooves, woodworking, or mucking out the barn, you can usually find her on the back of her horse, enjoying the delightful nasal bouquet of flowers, fly spray, and eau de horse sweat.

Vicki’s latest book, In Her Defense, kept me turning the pages and staying up way too late. 🙂 Needless to say. I loved it, and I’m sure you will too.

51Qcib8L6xLWhen her new client is murdered after handing her new evidence that could acquit him, lawyer Danielle Mckeen is determined to find out why.

A miscarriage and the collapse of his marriage to Danielle years before has left Jack Walsh reeling and slow to trust. But with a protective streak tattooed on his soul, he can’t refuse Danielle’s cry for help.

While in possession of the evidence, Jack and Danielle are nearly run off the road, their PI is stabbed and their investigation points to the man Jack reveres most. As they peal back the layers of fraud and greed and deceit, Danielle’s diabetic daughter is kidnapped, and her life bartered for the document. Lies are aplenty, and time is short.

Can Jack and Danielle dig deep in their hearts and discover the truth? That trust and honesty is the key to catching the killer, rescuing her daughter, and reviving their love?

In Her Defense is available at Amazon. You can see more of Vicki’s books on her website: http://www.vickitharp.com/.

Vicki agreed to answer a few questions for my blog.

1.   Characters are so often a reflection of ourselves.  Can you tell me what          flaws and attributes you share with Danielle McKean?

Let’s see…flaws and attributes I share with my heroine, Danielle. Probably the biggest flaw would be my independence. Which is normally not a bad thing, but when you are so independent that you don’t or won’t ask for help, even if it is in your best interest, that can be bad. Sometimes it’s an ego thing and I think it trips Danielle up sometimes as much as it does me.

  1. Why romantic suspense?  What drew you to this genre?

An attribute we share is the refusal to give up. Combined with a belief in yourself, it can be so powerful. Danielle is that type of woman. Everything she’s had to overcome in her life has made her realize what she is truly capable of when she is determined.

Unlike a lot of authors, romance was not a genre I read growing up. I read mostly mysteries and thrillers and suspense with some autobiographies and true life adventures thrown into the mix. Dean Koontz turned me on to romance. I know, his books are not your typical romance by most people’s accounts, but despite all the bad, scary, crazy stuff that happened in them, more often than not, the guy got the girl in the end and there was some kind of positive resolution. Some form of Happily Ever After. I found I really liked the HEA which drew me into romantic suspense. I read all sub-genres of romance now, but suspense will always be my favorite.

  1. What was it about your heroine that your hero fell in love with first?

I think Jack first fell in love with Danielle’s tenacity and heart. Even with their history together and the other tough challenges she’s faced in her life, she does it with grace and singular determination and a passion to help the underdog. Luckily for Jack, it is those attributes that forces her to seek his help and ultimately brings them back together.

  1. What’s next?

What’s next? Heroes, Harleys, and Horses. And of course, danger. Always danger. I’m really excited about this next project. A three-book series, all will be released within a year starting in October 2017, set on the fictitious Lazy S ranch in Wyoming.

Fast paced and suspenseful, COWGIRL, UNEXPECTEDLY is on preorder now and is the first in a three-book series—A Harley and a highway are all an Iraqi war veteran needs to soothe her restless spirit—until a pit stop puts her on the front lines of love.

Giveaway!

Vicki and I are giving away two e-copies of In Her Defense (Kindle version ONLY) to two people who leave comments. (Sorry, but this giveaway is limited to U.S. residents. If you’re reading this on Goodreads, you must go to my blog to leave your comment.)

Winners!

The winners from last week’s giveaway are Elizabeth and Becka Lynn. You have both won an e-book of Jami Albrights Running From a Rock Star (Brides on the Run, Book 1). Congratulations! Please email me at christie@christie-craig.com and let me know where to email your book. (Running From a Rockstar is only available in Kindle format.)

Jami Albright Giveaway!

Jami Albright writes zany, quirky, touching, and sexy romantic comedies. She says “If you don’t snort with laughter, then I haven’t done my job.” Her latest book, Running From a Rock Star (Brides on the Run, Book 1) just released, and I can’t wait to read it. It sounds like a hoot!

download (1)She’s a good-girl control freak. He’s a bad boy in need of a clean image. Will these opposites attract or self-destruct?

Scarlett Kelly is the poster child for responsible living. Growing up as the daughter of the town floozy, she’s made it her mission to be the exact opposite of her mother. So when she wakes up naked and hung over in bed with a bad-boy rock star, she bolts immediately. There’s one problem: Scarlett’s bedmate is her new husband. 

Gavin needs to repair his image, or his music career will go down the tubes. He’s also just learned he has a son he never knew existed. He needs to settle down, and bribing his new wife to stay married may just fit everything into place. 

Scarlett agrees to the ruse to help her family’s financial troubles even though she can hardly control herself around the rock star. As they search for Gavin’s son, will their unlikely matrimony give them exactly what they’ve been missing or send them packing?

Jami agreed to sit down with me and answer a few questions.

  1. Scarlett Kelly, your heroine, has an “opps-how-the-hell-did-i-get-that-tattoo?”  Do you have one?

No tattoos. Much to the dismay of my four sisters. A few years ago the four of us agreed to get a “Sisters” tattoo to support number four, who was diagnosed with cancer. They all got theirs, but I still haven’t gotten mine.They love to bring that up every time we get together, especially since it was my idea. I’m not being a total wuss, I promise. I can’t have a visible tattoo at work. But the minute I can quit the day job, I’m getting the tattoo…maybe…probably.

  1. Scarlett is a real character. In what ways are you like her?

I was raised in a small town, which is a lot like living in a fishbowl. My mother’s mantra was, “What will people think?” Once, when I was a senior in high school, my sister and I were “riding around” (driving the mile from one end of town to the other, repeatedly) and smoking candy cigarettes. We were pretty edgy back in the day. LOL. We thought we were hilarious. We tore through the whole pack that night. The next morning someone called my mother to tell her they’d seen us smoking. And even though my mom knew they were candy cigarettes, she was furious, because… “What will people think?”

So, yeah, I grew up very mindful that someone was always watching and evaluating my every move. That kind of thinking can make you a little paranoid. I have since come to realize that’s not true. For instance, when the football team huddles in the middle of the field, they’re not talking about me…usually.

  1. Tell us something about Jami Albright that no one else knows.

 There’s not a lot about me that nobody knows—I’m a bit of an oversharer. LOL. But there is one thing that most people don’t know about me. I have a serious thing for bald, fit men…like seriously. Jason Statham, Dwayne Johnson, Patrick Stewart, I don’t know what it is, but…MmmmMmmm, might fine.

My husband—not bald. So, mums the word.

What’s next for you?

 I’m finishing up a Brides on the Run novella, that will be out in the next month, and I’ve already written the next full-length book in the Brides on the Run series, Running With A Sweet Talker, which will be out in July. Just lots of writing and hanging out with readers on my Facebook Author Page.

Giveaway!

Jami and I are giving away two ebooks (Kindle version ONLY) of Running From a Rock Star (Brides on the Run, Book 1) to two people who leave a comment. (Sorry, this giveaway is limited to U.S. residents. If you are reading this on Goodreads, you must leave your comment on my blog in order to be entered into my giveaway.)

Not lucky enough to win a free copy? You can purchase Running From a Rock Star (Brides on the Run, Book 1) at Amazon. For more information you can find Jami on her website (www.jamialbright.com), Facebook, Twitter (@JamiAlbright) and Instagram (jamialbright1).

Winners!

The winners of last week’s giveaway are Loretta Wheeler (Susan C. Muller’s Autumn Secrets), Lucinda Wiens (Lori Wilde’s Million Dollar Cowboy) and Marsha McDaniel (Diane Kelly’s Love Unleashed). Ladies, email me at Christie@christie-craig.com and tell me if you prefer a NOOK or Kindle version.

What Are You Reading Giveaway!

What are you reading? I love to ask people what they’re reading. I’ve discovered some very talented authors through recommendations. Some have become my favorites. I also meet a lot of other authors at conferences, book signings, workshops, etc. And very often, I buy one of their books to read. So, I’ve got a pretty tall To Be Read pile. And it just got higher because three of my favorite authors just released new books. I’m already tearing through them, and enjoying every word. So, if you’re looking for an entertaining book, one that will keep you turning the pages late into the night, I thought I’d share what I’m reading with you.

Susan C. Muller’s  Autumn Secrets

This is the fourth book in Susan’s Season Pass series. It starts with Winter Song, Spring Shadow and Summer Storm, and now Autumn Secrets. Why the four seasons? Because murder is always in season.

51zcqYBDRALThe harvest moon has arrived and homicide detective Noah Daugherty is drawn into one final, harrowing case when the search for clues leads him to the middle of a killing field. Desperate, he enlists the help of a woman from his past. Together they discover a serial killer, hell bent on reaping his own depraved version of social sanitation. As Noah continues his urgent search for justice, the demented madman seems to stay one step ahead, taunting him and threatening everyone he holds dear. Can Noah put a stop to the killing, or will he be buried along with autumn’s secrets?

 

Lori Wilde’s Million Dollar Cowboy

New York Times Bestselling Author Lori Wilde returns to Cupid, Texas with a heartwarming story of a cowboy who comes home to the family ranch for a wedding filled with surprises…

51VTFrVTqvL._SX308_BO1,204,203,200_The illegitimate son of a Texas ranching dynasty, Ridge Lockhart left home ten years ago with one goal: to become more successful than the father who never accepted him.

Mission accomplished, but now he’s back at the Silver Feather Ranch for a wedding—three days of best man duty until he can hightail it out. Then he spies Kaia Alzate, and suddenly leaving isn’t quite so appealing.

Kaia Alzate grew up the daughter of the ranch foreman, servants to the mighty Lockharts in the mansion. Back then, she followed Ridge around like a puppy. Now, she’s fighting the attraction she feels for this sexy CEO. She’s determined not to make a big mistake—but when Ridge takes her in his arms she’s stunned…could he be the man she’s waited for all along?

 Diane Kelly’s Love Unleashed

Now this one doesn’t release until June 6th, but I’ve already preordered it, and I’ll be clearing my schedule when it comes out. I plan on sitting on my big front porch in my swing, sipping lemonade and reading Love Unleashed. (The lemonade is to keep me cool while reading about her hot fireman.)

51Fi4LqXRELBetween wrangling her rambunctious kindergarten class and trying to catch an elusive Dalmatian pup who’s been hanging around the playground, teacher Jessica Bellingham can hardly seem to catch her breath. And when hot, hunky fireman Louie DeLuca arrives to teach the children about fire safety, she just might need mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Who’d have thought a yellow slicker could be so sexy?

Things heat up quickly, igniting a passion the two would gladly allow to consume them. But will their romance become a four-alarm blaze, or will a dark secret from Jesse’s past threaten to cool things off for good? And what will become of the playful puppy who seems to stay just out of reach?

So as summer approaches, be sure you have lots of great summer reads. You can’t go wrong with Susan C. Muller’s Autumn Secrets, Lori Wilde’s Million Dollar Cowboy and Diane Kelly’s Love Unleashed.

GIVEAWAY!! 

I’ll give away e-books of Autumn Secrets, Million Dollar Cowboy and Love Unleashed to three people who leave a comment. (Sorry, but this giveaway is limited to U.S. residents only. If you’re reading this on Goodreads, you must go to my blog to leave your comment

                                                                                                                        

 

 

Talk To Me

Could Kylie communicate with Socks, her cat?  Do you communicate with your pets?

2031You know Derek could talk to animals, but for some reason, I never went there with Kylie.  I think she communicated with Socks the way I communicate with my animals.  They stare me down trying to tell me something, and I know they want something, so I keep offering them things, toys, food, a good petting, and they keep looking at me as if I’m stupid until I finally get it right.

 

That isn’t to say that they don’t communicate better between themselves.  I honestly believe animals are a lot smarter than we think they are.  And I seriously believe that they can talk to each other.  I saw it with my cats.

CraigcatSkitter was a feral cat.  He didn’t like people that much.  Well, he loved me and tolerated my husband.  But not so much anyone else.  When he was around eight months old, I brought home Bob, another cat.  But he was big teddy bear.  Someone dropped him off at a pet store when he was three weeks old.  He had been bottle fed. At six weeks I brought this little creature home.

 

I was afraid Skitter would kill him, so I decided to keep them separated for a while.  But the next day my son left a door open and when I went upstairs Skitter had Bob on the bed. I thought he was dead, but nope.  Skitter was cleaning him.  Skitter, while a male, became a surrogate mother to Bob.  Bob, a scaredy cat, depended on Skitter for everything.  Bob was always looking to Skitter to see if f it was safe to swat at a mosquito, or if he should run from a shadow.

Well, one morning hubby, Skitter and I were still in bed.  We heard Bob come pouncing up the stairs.  He stopped in my doorway. His hair was all puffed out with fear. He looked at Skitter and said, “Meow, me…ow, meo, meo.”

It was so odd, as if the cat was talking, but then what happened next was even more amazing.  Skitter stood up on the end of mattress.  And I swear it sounded like he was asking a question.  “Meow…meo, Meo?”

Then Bob answered.  “Meo, meo!”

Skitter then leapt off the bed and they both went storming down the stairs.  Hubby and I were both dumbfounded.

We got up and went downstairs. There, in our entryway, was a snake.  I swear on my life, Bob ran up those stairs to tell Skitter.   “Hey, there’s one of those squirmy creatures down there.  A snake, yeah it’s called a snake.”

Skitter asked, “Are you sure it’s not a worm.”

Bob answered.  “Oh heck no.  It’s big, I’m scaaaaared!!

So Skitter being the feral, kick-ass cat that he was, jumped up and ran down stairs to take care of it.

15037So while I don’t actually talk to my animals, I’m convinced they talk to each other.  And I love animals.  I think they make us better humans.  In almost every story I write, there’s either a cat or a dog.  In the book that releases in February 2018, there’s a puppy that works his emotionally healing magic on my hero and heroine.  And believe me, in that story there’s a lot of emotional healing to be done.

 

In the story I’m working on now, there’s a cat, Pumpkin.  And let’s just say my heroine, Riley, is a little like Kylie in that she keeps getting visits from dead people.  Poor Pumpkin ends up being a ghost detector.  It’s not a job he signed up for and he’s a little like Bob, always hiding under the bed.

15039In an adult romance, I added a huge junkyard dog that was about as sweet as honey.  Yup, I love using animals to help tell my stories.  So do tell, how does your pet communicate with you or other animals?  One person who leaves a post will win a e-copy of any one of my books. (Sorry but this giveaway is limited to U.S. residents.)