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Friday, March 6, 2015

Fashionista Friday


Plaid coat

Hunter rubber buckle boots
$76 -

Loeffler Randall satchel purse

On the Money

On the Money
by Tariq Saleim



Everything in life comes at the cost of something else. The more you have of something, the more you have to let go of something else, and this applies to money, too. There is no exception to this, and therefore it is important to know the true cost of your achievements. The more money you accumulate, the less you have of something else (often health, time, relationships, dignity, respect, etc.). Most of us are not able to fathom these costs up front, and when we finally understand, it is usually too late.

A banker by profession, Tariq Saleim has been the confidant of many successful individuals across his international career. He is a believer that true happiness comes from knowing what you want in life -and what you are willing to sacrifice to get it. 'On the money' is his first romantic novel that discusses time-tested moneymaking concepts and reflects on the hidden costs of our decisions in the process.


She was intrigued by her visitor, who had not bothered to call and then decided to wait. Slowly she walked toward the hall, and then she saw him. He was seated on the sofa facing the hallway, looking haggard and tired. His suitcase was next to him. He looked up as soon as he heard her footsteps and stood up to welcome her.

She quickly walked to him, and before he could say a word, she slapped him hard on his face.

“This is for not replying to my calls and messages,” she said furiously.

He did not say a word. Instead, he took her face in his hands and kissed her lips. Half-heartedly she tried to free herself from his grip and then pretended she could not. As she kissed him back, he released her face and embraced her in his arms.

“I thought I would deliver my message in person,” he replied lovingly, his lips still on hers.

“What took you so long?” she questioned, breathing heavily, struggling to talk and kiss at the same time.

“I had to be set free before I could,” he replied quickly, also breathing heavily now.

“And you are free now?” she questioned, holding her lips to his.

He pushed her back gently so that he could say his next words in no uncertain terms.

“I have paid for my commitments through my blood and sweat. There are no more commitments today. There is only love, there is only you, and nothing else matters.”

She looked into his eyes affectionately and said, “You are not going to disappear tomorrow?”

“Never again, my love; never again,” he replied with a smile.


1. What's the best and worst part of being an author?

Best part of being an author is the ability to create. One can make a world one fancies and shape characters one wants. I find this experience therapeutic. Worst part of being an author is feeling depressed when you write depressing scenes. Somehow when I write about sad and sorrowful situations I feel down and depressed.

2. Which book of yours is your favorite? Why?

My first book, A Chronicle of Amends, is my favorite book. It is a small book (only 115 pages) but it took me three and a half years to write. It captures all my experiences, ups, downs, fights and victories. It records my transformation from a carefree individual to someone who takes life responsibly.

3. What are your favorite authors in the genre that you write?

I am a great fan of Paulo Coelho and Karen Armstrong.

4. Which of your characters is most like you?

In my first book, A Chronicle of Amends, there was a character named ‘AA’. This is a character that I would want to be one day. Similarly in my second book there is a character named ‘Salman’ who appeals to me a lot and I think I would one day be like him.

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Tariq Saleim was born in Lahore, Pakistan, in 1972 and currently resides in Singapore. He is a banker by profession and has been associated with the industry for over two decades. He is a law graduate and also holds an MBA in finance. His first book, A Chronicle of Amends, was published in 2013 and received encouraging reviews from critics and fans. His second book, On the Money, discusses time-tested moneymaking concepts and reflects on the hidden costs of our decisions in the process.


The author is giving away a $25 Amazon or B&N gift card to a randomly drawn winner. Use the link below to enter. You can find his schedule at 

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Thursday, March 5, 2015

Book Review: Losing Heart

"I hate you. I hate you with all of Sylvia's heart."

Helen has waited for months for the heart that will save her life. After reaching out to the grieving mother of her donor heart, Helen realises that a second chance comes at a price. The price, she soon realises, is much steeper than she'd ever have chosen to pay.

There's more than one way to break a heart. There's more than one way to destroy a life...

Donna is a longtime book lover and sometime book reviewer and has devoured books from an early age. She writes short (or long) stories as and when inspiration hits and is married to fantasy author David M. Brown (Fezariu's Epiphany, A World Apart). She was also co-contributor to David's book, Man vs Cat, a humorous look at life with six rambunctious rescue cats.

Donna has lived in many different areas of the UK over the last 30-something years but has remained in Yorkshire for the past decade. She ardently disputes the misnomer that 'It's grim up north'. You can find Donna on Google+, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Goodreads, or visit her and her husband's shared blog: B-Lines and Felines.

My Review:

Let me start by saying that this story lives up to expectations, lives up to them and surpasses them. From the time I started reading this psychological thriller, I couldn't put it down. I read it nonstop in one sitting.

The plot is good and hangs together beautifully while the characters are complex and multidimensional. The good characters aren't saints; they do some things they probably shouldn't, and you love to hate the bad guys.

Maybe you'd be better than I was at figuring out how it would end. I guessed wrong, and a part of me still wanted a different ending. 

I was disappointed in one thing: the book was too short. I wanted to read more. 

Well done, Ms. Brown. 5 out of 5 stars.

Buy link:

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

A Thousand Stolen Moments

A Thousand Stolen Moments banner

Anaiah Press proudly presents
a military romantic novel that releases today!

Can you choose between fighting for your life and fighting for your heart?  
When twenty-two year old Emme Sawyer joins a Marine unit heading into Helmand Providence, she focuses on what she does best: keeping her men safe. But, when the unit is hit by an IED, Emme realizes she can’t save everyone. With her humanity on the line, and her faith in question, she seeks comfort from Raven, her commanding officer. Soon, Emme develops feelings that don’t belong in a combat zone, where each step could be your last.  
Raven keeps his emotions locked up tight, never allowing the men to see him sweat. But when Emme joins his unit, all bets are off; and the feelings he thought he left stateside begin to emerge. Knowing that the deserts of Afghanistan are the last place to start a romance, and the United States military’s view on fraternizing; Raven tries to deny his heart. Emme and Raven learn you can’t always choose where love finds you. And that sometimes, you just have to trust in God’s plan.  

Get your own copy of A Thousand Stolen Moments:

Amazon      B&N     Smashwords

About the Author:
Cnnie Ann Michael

Connie grew up in Seattle but moved to Central Washington to be closer to all things outdoors. Married with two college boys she keeps busy kayaking, mountain biking, skiing ,and hiking through the beautiful hills of the Wenatchee Valley. Growing up with a love of reading the transition into writing seemed natural and she can be found on summer days writing under the tree in her front yard surrounding by her three dogs.

Connect with Connie:
Website      Twitter       Goodreads      Facebook     Amazon
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Beyond the Book: Return Engagement

Let me tell you about a former student of mine.  Let’s call her Jane.  (Hey, in the first grade I read all about Dick, Jane, and Sally so it’s a logical choice.)  Anyway, Jane was a pretty good student who always did her work and was such a good athlete that several colleges in the area had spoken to her about playing basketball for them.  Her future looked pretty good, but then she started hanging around with the wrong crowd and got pregnant at seventeen.  When she told her parents about the baby, they threw her out of the house.  Her sister took her in, and she lived there until after she had the baby.  She also continued going to school.  She only missed a week when her son was born. 

Since she had to work part time to pay room and board to her sister, her basketball career was over.  She graduated as valedictorian of her class and went to work at local grocery store.  Then, her sister’s husband got tired of hearing a baby cry all the time, and the sister told Jane she’d have to find some other place to live.  One of her friends agreed to take her in provided she’d pay room and board so that’s what they did.

By now you probably think poor Jane would never get out of that grocery store, but you don’t know Jane.  She went to a local tech school where she got just about everything free because of her income and having a child.  She worked like a dog, and it took her longer than it took most people, but she eventually graduated from the tech school with a degree in automotive technology.  (She had originally wanted to be a teacher, but to do that she’d have had to go to school for two more years, and she needed money now.)

Jane sent a resume to a local car factory and got a job there.  Today, she’s making more money than some teachers who’ve been working for twenty years.  I know this because she was a guest speaker at her alma mater the school where I work.  She’s married to a man she met at the tech school, and they have a little girl.

Why did Jane succeed where so many have failed?  It has to be her character which gave her a strong work ethic and the desire to succeed. 

My heroine in Return Engagement Elizabeth Lane has just such a character.  Elizabeth’s life was anything but wonderful, yet in spite of it all she ends up one of the most famous women in the country. And she just happens to marry a senator’s son who has his eye on the White House. Here’s an excerpt from Return Engagement that that tells you about Elizabeth’s past.  In this excerpt she and Richard have met on the beach after a ten year separation brought about by Richard’s father who doesn’t think Elizabeth is good enough for his son. 

Her stomach churned when she thought of the enormous
complication presented by the fact that she already had a
fiancĂ©. I love Alex in so many ways, but I can’t think about him
right now. This time reason and caution will have to take a back seat
to emotion. Gah! That feels so weird. I’ve spent my entire life being
careful; I had to.

She didn’t come from money the way Richard did. Mentally,
she pictured the small, two bedroom home where she
had grown up. The house had originally been white, but they
hadn’t painted it even once during the nineteen years Elizabeth
had lived there. By the time she and her mother came to
Hollywood, most of the peeling paint had finally flaked off,
leaving the weathered, gray boards exposed to the elements.

The inside matched the exterior: old, faded, and dirty
looking no matter how much she and her mother tried to
clean it. It had mice too. They never had any food to waste,
so they constantly fought the little pests. She vividly remembered
the day she found a mouse in the sack of dried beans
her mother planned to cook for dinner. Sadly, her mother
had thrown the bag away. For the next two nights they’d had
nothing but sliced loaf bread smeared with margarine for dinner.

Of course, she had truly felt grateful for the bread, but it
hadn’t filled her up. The corners of her mouth turned down.
To this day mice revolted her.

She stumbled in the dark and tripped over a chunk of
driftwood. When Richard reached out to steady her, the
moon glinted on the face of his watch. It looked, and
undoubtedly was, expensive; it looked like the kind of watch
she had seen on the arm of Brandon Whitaker, her first high school

Brandon’s family had more money than anyone in Fairfield.
He looked fabulous, dressed divinely, and drove a wonderful
little blue sports car. They had algebra together in Mrs.
Wheeler’s fourth period class. In the spring of her sophomore
year he had invited her to go to the prom with him.

Thrilled, she had gone to the Goodwill store and found a
prom dress. Her mother could ill afford to spend twenty five
dollars on an outfit Elizabeth could only wear once, but she
worked an extra day at her second job to raise the money.

As it turned out, she never wore that dress. Brandon’s
father found out he had asked her to the prom and refused to
allow it. Brandon had taken Sherry Fisher to the dance instead,
and Elizabeth had sold her dress to her cousin Jennifer
who wore it to a policeman’s ball. Tears of anger even now
threatened to fall.

Yes, I’ve had to be careful. I never want to go back to that horrible,
little house. I have a great life, thank you very much, so why
have I let Richard turn my world upside down?

Alex never affects me this way. He comes from a nice middle
class family. When we spend time together I never lose every bit of
common sense I possess. Alex makes me feel safe and comfortable, but
Richard doesn’t. He makes me feel unsettled and out of sync. She
sighed. I can’t decide if I like the difference or not. I care for Alex on
many different levels, but Richard…

Thankfully, Richard didn’t want to talk. Right now she
needed to think.

Return Engagement is available at Whiskey Creek Press and at most online retail outlets.

Love Is Everything

BANNER Author is giving away FOUR prizes. Two winners will received a signed copy of Love Is Everything and two winners will receive an Amazon gift card ($10 value) ENTER CONTEST BELOW.
Book Title: Love Is Everything
Author: Elsie Hillman-Gordon
Genre: Fiction, Inspirational, Christian, Romance Book Release Date: May 30, 2014 Paperback: 106 pages ISBN-10: 1496112458 ISBN-13: 978-1496112453
cooltext1885520243 ehg_feb2015 Award-winning author Elsie Hillman-Gordon published her first fiction novella, Love Is Everything, in May 2014. Her book received the Gold/1st Place award for *Best Short Story* in the 2015 Feathered Quill Book Awards Program. Elsie lives in Washington, DC with her husband. She holds a BA in English and executive graduate certificates in editorial practices and marketing. She has worked for several media organizations, including NPR. In her free time, she stays busy supporting community outreach projects sponsored through her sorority, church, and non-profit organizations. Elsie’s passion is creative writing, but she also enjoys live theater, movies, reading, and long walks on autumn days. She believes in random acts of kindness and encouraging people to reach for their dreams. cooltext1885521552 Revised Cover_Love Is Everything Do you like to read inspirational fiction? Do you believe that people who have loved and lost can find true love again, that a hurting heart can heal, and that God’s love will see you through difficult times? If so, you’ll enjoy reading Love Is Everything. It’s the story of thirty-five year old Vanessa Dennison—a woman struggling to find joy in life and doubting her faith in God after losing her parents in a tragic accident. But after reluctantly accepting a blind date with Elliott Reeves, a handsome widower with a strong faith and young daughter, she embraces anew her relationship with God and the power of love. Sweet and emotional, this tale of rediscovering love, faith, and hope is sure to touch your heart. It’s a must read for anyone who’s ever loved and lost, especially those still reluctant to take a chance on love. cooltext1885522514
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Contest Giveaway: Author is giving away FOUR prizes. Two winners will received a signed copy of Love Is Everything. Two winners will receive an Amazon gift card ($10 value each) Enter to Win a Rafflecopter giveaway Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author Elsie Hillman-Gordon and is hosted and managed by Paulette from Write Now Literary Book Tours. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send an email to Paulette @

Passing the Torch


Deep in the Arizona desert live a girl and her dad, burying secrets--and bodies.

Mesa Kingston's first memory of burying a corpse was at eight years old. Back then it had been the carcass of a large lizard her dad found that they buried in the backyard of their isolated cottage. At age fourteen, the body of a young lady accompanied the reptile's remains, and ever since, an accumulation of female bodies began to grow. Now, the only way Mesa can stop the haunting screams of the dead is by drowning them out with flames. Or is there more to the blaze than even she can perceive?


Good girls do anything for their fathers, including rob, cheat, and kill, and I always considered myself a good girl. The time I first came to that conclusion will stay with me forever. Years later, here I am, still fulfilling my daughterly duty.

After wiping the sweat from my palm onto my jeans, I press the bulbous tip of the match against the strike strip on the side of the small carton. My hands shake worse than Grandma's had when trying to slice her ninety-first birthday cake just a few hours ago, but I manage to run the match across it anyway. The flame comes alive at my fingertips, dancing merrily at the prospect of latching on to something and disintegrating it into smoldering embers. Although the light breeze causes the flame to flicker at the end of the matchstick, I'm aware of the control I have over it. I watch the glow change shape through a veil of tears and with that the decision was absolute.

The flame will get to perform its destructive duty.

I flick the match toward the pile of wooden planks that used to be the porch. Instantly the fire catches the fumes of the pooled liquid and expands so quickly a wall of gasoline-scented hot air rushes me before the blaze travels deeper into the house. I back away to a safe distance as the straw-like grass crunches beneath my feet. Nearing the homemade fence, which is nothing more than a double row of chicken wire, I hear the screams from the distance, cries of agony that meld with my memory like two spreading pools of melted wax. I can't stop the waterworks. I don't even make an attempt.

The L.L. stands for Leslie Lee. I write erotic romance and post-apocalyptic/dystopian fiction under Leslie Lee Sanders.

But horror and thriller fiction is what I grew up on, what inspires me, and what began my pursuit to authorship. I’ve written many short scary stories since the 6th grade. Now they’re much more mature in general, thanks to the wide range of emotion and experience I’ve encountered over the years.

I’m a huge fan of horror and psychological thrillers in every fashion, including movies, books, art, campfire tales, etc. Some of my favorite stories are those that twist at the end or are ambiguous with deep societal or morality themes. This includes dystopias like Hugh Howey’s Wool, psychological thrillers like Shutter Island, and popular and classic horror/romances like V.C. Andrews’s Flowers in the Attic, my favorite.

All my ideas start with a twist, which is exactly how most of my stories end.


The author will be giving away a $10 Amazon/BN GC and 3 PDFs of PASS THE TORCH. Enter to win using the rafflecopter below. Tour dates can be found at

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