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Sunday, December 16, 2018

Stone Hard SEALs: Complete Collection is Available NOW!


TIARA GIVEAWAY BELOW!

Stone Hard SEALS Collection by Sabrina York
Don’t miss this binge-worthy series featuring action, adventure and steamy romance in exotic locations.
Hot alpha military heroes, strong snarky heroines, laugh-out-loud of humor and a tiara wearing Chihuahua.

What Readers are Saying About Stone Hard SEALs
“Sabrina York knows how to write Alpha males”
“Who doesn't like hard-bodied SEALS in action?”
“I love an alpha male who fights just as hard for his woman as he does for his country.”
“If you like sexy men in the military, bold women and HEA with a little danger thrown in-BUY THIS BOOK!”
“Snappy dialogue, hunky alpha heroes, plucky heroines, steamy hot sex, what more can one ask for?”

A hostage rescue mission turns Ryder “Stone” Maddox’s world on its ear when he comes face-to-face with his greatest fear: A woman he cannot resist. But he has to resist Lily Wilson. He’s vowed never to fall in love. Besides, as the daughter of a senator, she is definitely off-limits. Lily sees things differently. Irresistibly drawn to this hot, hard SEAL, she is determined to prove they belong together…and that her man does not have a heart of stone.  (Originally published in the NYT and USA Today Bestselling Hot Alpha SEALs collection)

Drake Ronan is all man—a rock hard SEAL who doesn’t need help from anyone. Doesn’t need anyone. But when he’s shot during a dangerous rescue mission, and has to rely on a beautiful nurse to survive, he realizes he has to rethink his resolution. Suddenly he can’t imagine his life without Brandy in it. It’s a damn shame she has a secret that could ruin everything.

Mason Steele expected to be a SEAL until the day he died. And he was. A pity they revived him. Now he’s been mustered out of the Navy and his life seems wholly unsatisfying. He misses the action; he misses the camaraderie; he misses being able to use his tightly-honed skills. He’s lucky to have snagged this job with Ryder’s Stone Hard SEALs Services as a bodyguard—it provides some hope for his future. But the last thing he wants to do is babysit a spoiled heiress who is obsessed with the color of her nail polish and carries a Chihuahua in her purse.
But there’s more to Pansy Hightower than can be seen at first glance. She’s smart, sassy and determined to save the business her late mother built. She resents having a guard dog and does what she can to lose her muscular shadow. But when it becomes clear that someone is targeting her—perhaps for the same kind of fatal “accident” that befell her mother, she decides having the 240 pound SEAL with killer instincts and lethal hands at her back might be a good idea after all.
Until they share a kiss, that is. Until those lethal hands prove they have other talents as well. Talents that leave her breathless and wanting and weak. The last thing either of them wants is a relationship, but the scorching passion between them cannot be denied…even though it will undoubtedly spell disaster for them both. (Originally published in Kindle World)

It’s insane to want him, this beautiful, strong, sexy man. Not just because her hot bodyguard is tasked with herding her safely through the exotic night markets of Hong Kong. And not just because she’s his boss. But because they are worlds apart. What they have can only be a fling. It can’t last forever.
But Garrett has other ideas. (Originally published in Kindle World)

Book Five: Hot Rod
A standard witness protection mission goes wrong, thrusting Matt Tate and his target, a wise-cracking hooker named Vixen LaFleur, into a fight for their lives. But flying bullets and lurking villains are not nearly as dangerous as risking the heart. Against his will, Matt is attracted to the dauntless, exasperating woman he’s supposed to be protecting, but she is harboring a secret. One that could heal his wounded soul, or crush it. (Originally published in Kindle World)

Returning to his hometown to sell his hated father’s ranch, the last thing Luke Grant expects to find on his first day in town is a reason to stay. But there she is, Melissa Divine. The girl he loved all those years ago.
But Melissa has changed since those innocent days. She’s just escaped from a hellish marriage and wants nothing to do with any man. Especially not this big, burly alpha biker who reminds her of her ex.
Can this former SEAL change her mind before his time runs out? (Originally published in Kindle World)

Dane Coulter is mourning the loss of his best friend, fellow Special Ops buddy, Cody. Oh, Cody didn’t die. It’s worse. He’s getting married. Cody is, in Dane’s opinion, whipped.
Dane swears he will never suffer the same fate. But when he meets a woman who can take all his dominant loving and beg for more, he realizes he may have met his match. It’s a damn shame she’s the one woman in the world his man-code deems untouchable…his best friend’s sister.


Win the Stone Hard SEALs Collection Tiara!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Her Royal Hotness, Sabrina York, is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author of award-winning hot and humorous romance. Her heroes range from valiant SEALS to sweaty cowboys to hot Highlanders and more. Check out her latest awards for Susana and the Scot including a 2017 RITA nomination and the
2017 National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award Winner.
Visit her webpage at www.sabrinayork.com to check out her books, excerpts and tiara giveaways.


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CONTEMPORARY

Stripped Down Cowboys (And Prequel Novellas)
Stud For Hire, Book 1
Spurred On, Book 3

Prequel Novellas
The Real McCoy, Prequel Book 1
Come Hell or High Water, Prequel Book 2
Protect and Serve, Prequel Book 3

Tryst Island Series—Steamy Contemporary Romance
Rebound, Book 1
Dragonfly Kisses, Book 2
Smoking Holt, Book 3
Heart of Ash, Book 4
Devlin’s Dare, Book 5
Parker’s Passion, Book 6

Stand Alone


HISTORICAL ROMANCE

Noble Passions Series
Dark Fancy, Book 1
Dark Duke, Book 2
Brigand, Book 3
Defiant, Book 4
Folly,  Book 5

Untamed Highlanders
The Dundragon Time Travel Trilogy
Laird of her Heart, Book 1
Her Hot Highlander, Book 2 (Coming Soon)
His Highland Lass, Book 3 (Coming Soon)

Waterloo Heroes
Tarnished Honor, Book 1
Call of the Wild Wind, Book 2

PARANORMAL


COLLECTIONS

Elite Metal/Action Adventure


Want Something Different?

SCI/FI SPACE OPERA (writing as SAM YORK)





Saturday, December 15, 2018

'Tis the Season with @AuthorNicMorgan #Holiday #Romance #Tradition #RB4U


Welcome to Romance Books 4 Us, I'm your tour host for the day, so sit back, prop up your feet and get comfy. I'm about to share some goodies with you.


'Tis the Season

Hello everyone! Happy December 15tih. Now that there are only 10 days until Santa slithers down our chimney many of us are going through our Christmas traditions. Some old, and some new, there are many types of things that friends and family can do to share in the joys of the season. 

Here are just a few of my favorite things to do, especially on a chilly winter night when the flakes are falling and the streets are sparkly white....

  1. Watch Christmas Vacation... I just love that movie! 
  2. Drinking hot cocoa with extra tiny marshmallows... so yummy! 
  3. Curl up with one of my favorite reads and a glass of Reisling. 
  4. Drive around the city and look at Christmas lights with my daughters. 
  5. Christmas shopping... not for the best deal or the latest fad, but for that one special gift that you know will make someone smile. 😃


How about you? What are your favorite traditions? Is there one that is your absolute favorite? Or is there one that you'd love to begin? 








Enter the Romance Books 4 Us Monthly Contest HERE 


Thank You for joining me today! I'll see you all next month on the 1st. Have a great month and remember to check out Romance Books 4 Us for some awesome reads! 

Nicole Morgan is an author of erotic romance novels, which more often than not have a suspenseful back story. Erotic romance mixed with good old-fashioned whodunit. While she's written everything from contemporary to paranormal her leading men will more than likely be wearing a uniform of some kind. From military to police officers, she has a love for writing about those who protect and serve. From her very first novel about Navy SEALs to her more recent releases you will be sure to find a few twists and turns you were not expecting.

She is a proud member of the Romance Books 4 Us Gold Authors and also one of the Sweet N Sexy Divas.  


Until next month lovies ~ Nic 


Friday, December 14, 2018

My Handy Helper for the Christmas Season by Marianne Stephens






The frenzy of holiday shopping keeps starting earlier each year. I like to try and get through Thanksgiving first before starting, but did get some gifts in early November. And, all the Christmas music started on the radio. Not to be outdone, Christmas movies on TV have been flooding the channels since the beginning of November. I love watching the movies!

What's on your wish list? Clothes, money, new electrical gadgets, money, car, money... Hmm. there's a pattern here. Of course, you'll want some wonderful romance books and have them on your wish list. If you're lucky, maybe Santa thinks you've been REALLY good this year.

I've done some of my Christmas shopping already. I honestly do a lot of shopping online. Still have more to go.

I can always use a couple of helping hands with my decorating, baking, etc.  this time of year. So, here's a photo of my Christmas helper. He's cleaning out the chimney so Santa can just drop down and bring all my gifts. My helper got all dressed up to "make the season bright"...and don't you just love his hat?

                     Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, Happy Holidays! 


My Christmas story: Dear Santa…I Want A MAN For Christmas
 
Frustrated with untrustworthy men, Melissa orders a man doll. When delivery guy, Nick, shows up, she has second thoughts about how to satisfy her needs.


Story can be found in the following anthologies:
(In Naughty List Anthology)
Print version: Amazon  B&N
Ebook version: Amazon

(In Getting Naughty Anthology)
Ebook version: Amazon  




Photo: www.rockshots.com


Thursday, December 13, 2018

Happy Holidays



When it comes to the holidays, I’m a really big five-year-old. I love the lights, the paper, the singing, the baking, the TV specials, and most of all the presents.

In theory.

In reality, things never seem to come out quite the way they do in the movies, do they? Somebody gets sick, someone hates what you bought them, and the big family dinner just leaves you with a kitchen full of dirty dishes.

Know what?

I still don’t care. If I can’t find a perfect holiday in real life, then I’ll watch “White Christmas” one more time, and make the most of what I do have. Even though the cynical males I live with would rather not bother with the tree, lights, and festive spirit, I do so anyway, and come up with ways to make it work for them. Yes, one of my Christmas albums contains songs like “Christmas Night of the Living Dead,” and “Don’t You Come Home for Christmas.” If they can laugh, they put up with my holiday eccentricities. It’s a compromise that works for us. And laughing with them reminds me that what I DO have is a couple of sons who are now functional adults, and a husband who adores me enough to put up with my seasonal mania. In the grand scheme of things, that just isn’t a bad deal at all.

One way I do sneak in my Christmas sappiness fix is with books. I LOVE seasonal romances, both reading them and writing them. Happy ever after with a snowy twist is just the perfect thing to curl up with…until the dogs need out, the oven timer dings, and the Fed-Ex man shows up, at least. J

Monday, December 10, 2018

Unusual Christmas Traditions from Around the World

Posted by R. Ann Siracusa

The Holidays are upon us. May the world rejoice in peace.

Most of us living in the North America, South America, US and Europe know the common Christmas traditions of the western world. Although Christmas is a Christian religious celebration, it's surprising to find it is celebrated throughout the world. Sometimes it is celebrated not as a religious holiday and sometimes in places we wouldn't expect.
The manner in which the Christian religion is mixed with local traditions, ancient pagan beliefs and festivals is fascinating. I’ve posted this blog before, but I update it annually and in 2018 I found some new, interesting and, in a few cases, irreverent  “traditions.”
  SWEDEN – "GOD JUL AND (OCH) ETT GOTT NYTT AR!"

In Sweden the Christmas is all about time spent with family and friends and eating lots of food and sweets. The festivities start with the St. Lucia ceremony on December 13, the Winter Solstice on the old Julian calendar. But we’ve already looked at the traditions that go with St. Lucia festival.
I’ve run on to another rather recent “tradition” in Sweden: The Gävel Goat. Actually, Gävel is the name of the city where this event takes place. The goat is bocken (boken), in Swedish.
The Yule Goat
The Yule goat is a Scandinavian and Northern European Christmas symbol, a goat made of straw, which is one of the most popular Christmas decorations in Sweden.
The prevalent theory is that the origin dates back to ancient pagan festivals, in particular the worship of the Nose god Thor, who rode the sky in a chariot drawn by two goats. After the advent of Christianity, the Yule goat morphed into a goat which was supposed to help Santa Claus deliver presents. On occasion, Santa rode the goat instead of flying in his sleigh.
Photo source:Wikipedia
 
The Gävel Goat
Perhaps the city of Gävel, Sweden, used straw Yule Goats in their city’s decorations for Christmas in Gävel’s Castle Square. I couldn’t find out.             
However, in 1966, Stig Gavlén, an advertising consultant, came up with the idea of building a giant straw version of Yule Goat in Castle Square. The first giant goat was constructed by the Gävel Fire Department as were those erected each year from 1966 to 1970 and 1986 to 2002.
For the last fifty years the giant goat has been a Christmas tradition and is dedicated at the beginning of Advent. The event now draws tourists from all over the world.
As the years passed, the goat has grown in size. The one built in 1985 by the Natural Science Club of the School of Vasa reached 41 feet in height and made it into the Guinness Book of Records. In 1993, it reached 49 feet, setting another record.
But our giant goat has a problem. Despite the efforts of the city of Gävel, the goat has been destroyed thirty-six times, the most recent incident in 2016. Usually it is torched, but because the fire station is nearby, they have always managed to save the wooden frame. At least once it was hit by a car and collapsed. More recently the police foiled an attempt to steal it by helicopter.
Since 1986, two goats have been built, one by a society of Southern Merchants and the other by the Natural Science Club of Vasa, so there is a standby. Sometime both get destroyed.
The 2011 Goat on Fire www.todayifoundout.com/giant-goat-sweden   
Photo: Mikael Johansson/Wikimedia Commonshttps://www.thelocal.se/20151126/five-weirdest-attacks-on-swedens-straw-yule-goat                                   
Although the city has taken many measures to protect the goat. Fences, guards, spotlights and cameras don't seem to work. The biggest deterrent of all is that it is illegal to burn down the goat, with serious consequences for those caught. 

In 2001, a 51-yearold American tourist, Lawrence Jones, set the goat on fires after supposedly being convinced by his Swedish friends that it was a legal game the town officials played with the populace. He ended up with a $14,700 fine and an 18 day prison sentence for his efforts.

The photo is the goat which was set on fire during a blizzard in 1998.

Of course, despite all this and other efforts, half the fun of the tradition (The Dark Tradition, if you will) is seeing and betting whether or not the goat can stay intact until Christmas.


MEXICO – Feliz Navidad”


Mexican celebrate in many of the same ways as other countries. In Mexico, las posadas begins on December 16. The ninth evening of las posadas is Buena Noche, Christmas Eve. The children lead a procession to the church and place a figure of the Christ Child in the nativity scene there, Then everyone attends midnight mass.

And of course, the Christmas dinner. In Mexico, it just isn’t Christmas without tamales.
La Noche de Rábanos - The Night of the Radishes

However, if you spend Christmas eve in Oaxaca, Mexico, you’ll enjoy an interesting tradition you may not be familiar with. The night of December 23 is “The Night of the Radishes” (La Noche de Rábanos), one of the annual Christmas customs in Oaxaca, Mexico.


In this festival, competitors carve nativity scenes and other Christmas themes into large radishes, which are proudly displayed at the Christmas market in the town square. Oaxaca has land dedicated to cultivating special vegetables just for this event.
The competition’s origins date back to when holiday market vendors tried to make their vegetables more enticing by making sculptures with them.
It was such a hit that the governor, Vasconcelos, decided to create an official contest in 1897. It’s been a tradition in Oaxaca ever since.  All kinds of sculptures can be seen—saints, musicians, buildings, even a tiny cemetery where little radish people are celebrating the Day of the Dead.
To ensure fair competition, everyone uses vegetables grown by the government for the festival. And these radishes are big. Some grow 1.5 feet long and can weigh almost seven pounds.
The festival starts in the morning, when everyone can see the artists working on their sculptures, but wait until night if you want to see the finished masterpieces.
The festival also features concerts around the city, fireworks, and light shows.                     Photo by: Lair Lobo-https://www.atlasobscura.com/
Photo by: W. Scott Koenig 2013                                                     








SPAIN - Feliz Navidad"

The Spanish celebrate with a number of traditional events such nativity scenes (they like large ones), midnight mass, dinners and special deserts, the Three Kings, but there are a few somewhat irreverent traditions also.
Caga Tió or Tió de Nadal (Pooping Log)
This Catalan Christmas tradition is called the Pooping Log. The word Tió means log. 

Children decorate a small log by adding legs, a face, and a red Catalan hat ('barretina') and sometimes a red cloth or blanket. They are for sale everywhere around Christmas time.
From the 8th of December until Christmas the children feed the log small pieces of bread or fruit, take care of it and keep it warm. As Christmas approaches, the parents replace the first log with a bigger one, and then bigger. The children believe if they take good care of the log, it will grow bigger and they will get bigger presents. 
On Christmas Eve or Christmas day the children sing a special song to make the log “poop”, then they beat him with a stick.
After giving the log a good beating and still singing, they leave the room, giving parents the opportunity to put candy and presents in the hallow log or under the blanket. Traditionally, when the log has nothing left to poop, it finishes  the deed with a salt herring, a head of garlic, an onion, or it 'urinates' by leaving a bowl of water.

These days the presents pooped out by the log are candy, sweets and turrón nougat, and maybe one gift, since the big day for gift giving in January 6, the Epiphany.

El Caganer (The Defecator)

All Spaniards seem to like nativity scenes, big and small. You find them everywhere. Some families buy a nativity scene rather than a Christmas Tree. A second Catalan tradition I’d never heard of is the Caganer. It’s a small figurine of a man wearing a red Barretina squatting with his pants around his ankles, defecating. (That doesn't sound like a very good Christmas tradition to me.)
                       Photo source: 2012 Article by Barbara Weibel  holeinthedonut.com/2012/caganers 

That’s strange enough, but the kicker is that in every crèche there is a hidden Caganer.
The Caganers are for sale everywhere at Christmas time, and have become so popular you can find a caganer figurine with the face of every celebrity in the world.
In a 2012 article, Barbara Weibel writes, “No one knows for sure how the Caganer originally came into being and even today, opinions are divided on what it symbolizes. Some insist that excrement is symbolic of fertilizing the earth.”
According to the ethnographer, Joan Amades, it was a “customary figure in pessebres in the 19th century, because people believed that this deposit fertilized the ground of the pessebre (a manger, crib, nativity scene)…placing this figurine in the pessebre brought good luck and joy and not doing so brought adversity.” 
Others believe the act of defecation is symbolic of the equality of all people, regardless of status, race, or gender (i.e. everyone does it). The explanation Barbara Weibel says she likes best is the reference to an old Spanish proverb which translates as “Dung is no saint, but where it falls, it works miracles.”

THE PHILIPPINES – “Maligayang Pasko”  (in Tagalog, 1 of 8 Philippino languages)

"Malipayon nga Pascua” in Ilonggo;
“Maayong Pasko” in Sugbuhanon or Cebuano;
Maugmang Pasko” in Bicolano;
“Maupay Nga Pasko” in Warey arey
“Maabig ya pasko” in Pangalatok;
“Magayagan inkianac” Pangasinense
Christmas is a major holiday in the Philippines because over eighty percent of the population is Roman Catholic, and you can say “Merry Christmas” in eight Philippino languages. The people make the season last as long as possible, and some of the shopping and caroling begins in September.
Many of the Christmas traditions came from Europe with the missionaries in the 1500’s but there are some traditions unique to the Philippines.
The parol, the most popular Christmas decoration, is a bamboo pole with a lighted star lanterns on it. Made from bamboo strips and colored paper or cellophane, it represents the star of Bethlehem which guided the Wise Men.
Originally these lanterns were simple, and only about eighteen inches in diameter. Now they are much bigger. 
The Lantern Festival (Ligligan Parul Sampernandu) is held each year on the Saturday before Christmas Eve in the city of San Fernando – now known as the “Christmas Capital of the Philippines.” The festival attracts spectators from all over the country and across the globe. Eleven villages take part and compete for the most elaborate lantern. Today these lanterns are about 6 meters in diameter lighted from within by electric bulbs that sparkle in patterns.

AUTHOR R. ANN SIRACUSA
Travel to Foreign Lands for Romance and IntrigueFacebook  Twitter  GooglePlus  Website  AmazonLink


2018 Sources
http://www.christmasinthephilippines.com/christmas-decor/parol/
https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/san-fernando-philippines-christmas/index.html
https://www.momondo.com/discover/article/christmas-traditions-around-the-world
https://www.whychristmas.com/cultures/philippines.shtml
http://www.mjenemark.com/blog/2014/01/the-unfortunate-fates-of-the-gavle-goat-a-timeline
http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2012/12/gavle-goat-sweden-burn-interview-eje-berglund.html?gtm=top&gtm=top
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G%C3%A4vle_goat
http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2015/12/giant-goat-sweden-people-try-burn-every-year/
https://www.atlasobscura.com/foods/night-of-the-radishes-carving-festival
https:/twitter.com/Gavlebocken

http://www.mexconnect.com/articles/3955-radiant-radishes-la-noche-de-rabanos-in-oaxaca
https://gastropod.com/night-living-radishes/
http://agringoinmexico.com/2013/12/25/night-of-the-radishes-the-roots-of-oaxacas-oldest-festival/
https://people.howstuffworks.com/culture-traditions/holidays-christmas/christmas-traditions-around-the-world-ga9.htm
https://www.smartfundiy.com/21-mexican-christmas-traditions/
https://www.uvolunteer.net/blog/how-to-celebrate-christmas-in-costa-rica/
https://www.godutchrealty.com/costa-rica-real-estate-blog/how-to-prevent-culture-shock/christmas-traditions-in-costa-rica/
https://theculturetrip.com/europe/spain/articles/8-spanish-christmas-traditions-you-need-to-know/
https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/catalonia-tio-de-nadal-christmas-log-tradition-presents-what-is-it-a8091921.html
https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2017/12/22/572569325/caga-ti-a-catalan-log-that-poops-nougats-at-christmas
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ti%C3%B3_de_Nadal
https://slate.com/human-interest/2013/12/feeding-the-poop-log-a-catalan-christmas-tradition.html
https://www.barcelonayellow.com/barcelona-christmas-articles/625-caga-tio-christmas-log-tradition-and-song
https://scarylittlechristmas.wordpress.com/2013/12/23/kallikantzari/










                          



                                                                                                     



























                                                   
















                 

                                                                                                    




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