A Rake by Any Other NameIt’s that time again! A Rake by Any Other Name hits the bookstore shelves on November 4th! Strap on your cyber-stilettos and come with me on a jaunt to some of the hottest romance blogs around. You’ll enjoy sneak peeks at my Regency-set answer to Downton Abbey, random stuff about me, and of course, a chance to win at every stop.

Here’s my itinerary for this week:

Nov. 3: HarlequinJunkies
Nov. 4: JauntyQuills
            Elizabeth Boyle’s Blog
Nov. 5: FreshFiction
Nov. 7: From the TBR Pile

Mark your calendars and plan to join me each day! I look forward to hearing from YOU!




BookFairyI’ve been trying to ignore Pinterest for some time now. It seems like something I could tumble into and groggily emerge hours later with nothing to show for it but a smile on my face. Not good when I have book deadlines to meet.

But I couldn’t resist peeking at some of the clever costumes bookloving folk are coming up with for Halloween. Just had to share a few: share a few:

This darling Book Fairy look totally rocks–and would be perfect for the Fairy Ball at the RTBooklovers Convention next May.. Only problem is that wings are devilishly difficult to pack in a carry on!

halloween-costumes-for-kids-19 (2)

Love book-centric costumes for kids. Looking for something for your little boy AND your dog? What could be better than Harry Potter and “Fluffy?”


HalloweenMaryandLauraAnd for the girls, it’s hard to beat this Laura Ingals Wilder with her older sister Mary from Little House on the Prarie. When my girls were small, we read the whole series aloud. Sweet memories.




Of course, when looking for inspiration, why look further than the classics? This little Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland even has the scowl down pat. I’d paint the roses red rather than face that, wouldn’t you?





And how about this Legolas, the coolest of the elves from Lord of the Rings? If this lad wasn’t a Tolkein fan before, he will be now.



Halloween IshmaelLastly, if you’re at work today and need a quick costume, this idea is nothing short of brilliant, IMO. From the first line of the immortal Moby Dick, this pithy costume is not only simplicity itself (all you need is a nametag!), it will let you know which of your co-workers actually crack a book once in a while!  

Have fun tonight and stay safe if you’re out and about with trick-or-treaters!



Plaid to the Bone

Ghostly Fun!

Ever wonder how ghosts are made? Find out how Callum Farquahar became the ghostly steward of Bonniebroch Castle in Plaid to the Bone!

Get it now for your:

Kindle | Nook | iBooks | Kobo

I’ve always suspected I was a little bit psychic. Not in any organized way and certainly not strongly enough to be of any earthly good to anyone, but every now and then something happens that makes me go “Hmm…”

Susie in a sweater (2)For example, when I was a kid, I started doodling a little black dog all over the margins of my papers. I never had a scruffy little black dog. Didn’t know anyone who did. But the image seemed to latch onto my psyche and I doodled it for years.

Then in 1998, I went to the pound, looking for a dog for my parents who’d just lost their beloved pet. And wouldn’t you know it, there was an eight pound ball of fur that so strongly reminded me of my doodle, I blurted out, “It’s my little black dog.” According to the pound workers, the dog had spent the week since it arrived cowering in the corner ignoring everyone. But when she saw me, she came running, reared on her hind legs and pawed the air like a tiny stallion. I took her home and Susie Belle was my constant companion for the next 12 years. 

So when I dreamed about a little white dog a few months ago, I told my DH about it. Just to give him fair warning that I was expecting a very dirty, very hairy little white dog who would need our help. I felt sure the dog would appear eventually, but I was in no particular hurry. After all, it had taken decades for my Susie Belle to show up.

The dog appeared this weekend.

We were in northern Missouri to sing at the memorial service for my dear Uncle Charles. He was lovely man who was devoted to his family, music and animals of all sorts and we mourn his loss terribly. When we came out of the church after the service, my cousin Jan was holding the filthiest little white dog. He’d been running around in traffic and had nearly been hit a couple of times already. He had no collar and his shaggy coat was a snarled mess of matted hair and cockleburs. Under all that hair, his boney spine and ribs could be easily felt. He’d obviously been on his own for some time.

My first thought was, “It’s my white dog.”

SAMSUNGBut I didn’t know how it could be. We were well over 300 miles from home and staying with relatives who might not welcome a strange little animal into their very clean home. When my cousin said she was going to take him to the pound so his owners could claim him there, I was half relieved, half crestfallen.

Then a few minutes later, my cousin came back with the dog. The pound would NOT take him. That settled it. Once I made sure my aunt was ok with a four-legged visitor for the night, I said we’d take him.

The whole family was relieved. Everyone wanted to help him, but for one reason or another didn’t have room for him permanently. My sweet cousins, Jan and Jill, painstakingly cut out the worst of the cockleburs and matting while my DH held him still.

SAMSUNGWe had to look closely to see if he had both eyes because of all the hair hanging in his face. Contrary to what it looks like in this picture, the dog is not in pain. He’s just panting because some of the burs had attached to…a very sensitive area. But my cousins were patient and gentle and he got some much needed relief. This experience caused him to bond with the DH and he follows him around constantly.

Anyway, a bath, fresh water and a little kibble made him a very happy boy. And as for his name…the whole family decided he should be called Charlie after my dear uncle. He’s already started answering to it.

He was a wonderful traveler and seems to be housebroken. Tomorrow, Charlie has an appointment with the vet to update all his shots and schedule a time for him to be neutered. While Charlie and Mack, our beloved terrier, are getting along famously, Mack gets a little tired of having to defend his virtue when they wrestle!

SAMSUNGThen Charlie will be off to the groomers for clean cut. We did our best, but he still has some stubborn matting and a few deeply embedded burs. I can’t wait to see what a handsome little fellow he’ll be. Of course, I’ll share the “After” picture!    

And we’re not the only ones who already love Charlie. He’s wrapped my dad around his little paw too.

I love this picture. Isn’t he adorable? And the dog’s cute too!

Near the end of my Uncle Charles’ service, the pastor shared Hebrews 13:2 “Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.”

Charlie is the little stranger in our midst, though he’s quickly carving out a place for himself in the family. Fingers crossed that he doesn’t have a microchip. Once we know that, we’ll know if our “entertaining” is for the short term or long.

Is it selfish to hope he doesn’t have a family looking for him?


P.S. A couple of days have passed. Here’s an update to the Charlie saga.

  • No chip was found so he’s our forever little boy.
  • He’s negative for heart worm and is now up to date with all his shots.
  • He was almost unrecognizable when we picked him up at the groomers, but he was so happy to see us, we knew it was him.

Isn’t he a sweet little fellow?