Friday, July 18, 2014

Hard Act to Follow Cover Reveal

First of all, thank you so much for hosting me on this, the momentous one-month countdown day to my upcoming release, Hard Act to Follow!

I’m super excited to be here. I absolutely adored writing these characters and I can’t wait to share them with…well, anyone who will take them in and throw them a scrap of bread. Do it. You didn’t want that crust, anyway. It was dry and had all those yucky seeds on it. Maybe even mold if your bread drawer is like mine. I promise you won’t regret it.

Kyrie is an actor with a physical aversion to telling lies, a one-eyed cat, and horrible taste in men. His ex-brother-in-law and best friend, Greg, harbors a secret crush he can’t shake. After denying his feelings for Kyrie for too long, Greg finally gives in to desire one drunken night. Come the morning, the facts get twisted. Kyrie pretends he doesn’t remember a thing — a lie that eats him alive — and Greg can’t stop thinking about how he screwed up the best thing in his life.

Before they can clear the air, Kyrie follows his dreams to New York City, but could he also be running away?

A mistake from Kyrie’s past detonates their silence, and Greg is forced to confront the man he loves. Is their new truth strong enough to support a relationship, or are they doomed to crumble under old fears? Their friendship could evolve into something a million times stronger, but maybe Kyrie’s act is just too hard for Greg to follow.

Sounds like an awesome book right? And now, here's the cover!!!!

Release Date: 8/18/14

Kimber Vale is giving away a release day e-copy of Hard Act to Follow along with a $5 Amazon gift card for a little extra spice from the spice weasel. BAM! Win it before you can buy it!
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Hard Act to Follow is a standalone novel, but you can still get jazzed for its release by picking up the first two books in the Shooting Stars series, Forever is Now and Double Takes. :-)

Find Kimber’s work at Liquid Silver Books, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, All Romance, and all the other usual suspects.


Are you a blogger/reviewer who would like to jump on Kimber’s book tour train? The kindly old conductor solemnly swears not to speed (too much), and there will, of course, be a drink car.

Author Bio:
K. Vale writes erotic romance of all stripes, from hot hetero to mouthwatering manlove. Find her MF work published under Kimber Vale. Come for the sex. Stay for the story. Stalk Kimber on Facebook and Twitter @KimberVale, and check her site for updates, new releases, and freebies at The blog:

Elliot K. Carnucci is a Big, Fat Loser VBT

The kids at Ralph Bunche Middle School love to pick on Elliot Kravitz-Carnucci. He struggles with his weight, looks like a geek, makes top honors, and lives above the Carnucci Home for Funerals in South Philadelphia with his distant, workaholic father and Nonna, his quirky, overbearing grandmother.
Since his parents divorced, he splits spending his time with his funeral director father and his mother Rayna, who dreams of becoming the queen of commercials on the west coast.
At the hands of his peers, Elliot experiences a series of bullying episodes that escalate from entrapment in a school supply closet to a brutal “swirly” (head dunk in the toilet) that lands him in the hospital emergency room.
Elliot has a small circle of loyal friends and a mentor named Duke, an aging school custodian, who root for him to overcome his bullying issues so that he can enjoy his life as a teenager and a budding singer/performer. Can Elliot win his fight against the nasty bullies, or is he doomed forever? Read this funny, sad, and crazy book to find out.

“Help–I can’t breathe–let me out. Somebody help...”

I pounded the inside of the musty supply closet until my knuckles turned blue. Did anybody even have the key?
What if they don’t come? What if I’m trapped here all night?
I could hear loud voices and laughing, so I knew Kyle Canfield and one of his friends from the basketball team were there, waiting to see if I would cave in and plead for mercy.
The bell blared. Classes changed. Kids stampeded through the halls. Then, silence.

Finally I heard someone shout, “I’ve got the key, Doc.”
“Thanks, Duke,” Doc Greely, the assistant principal, said to Mr. Boardly, the man who’d sprung me loose.

Mr. Boardly, the head custodian, better known as Duke, offered me his arm, and I stumbled out of the closet. He was as thin as his mop handle, but all muscle–no flab like me. A scruffy white beard covered half his face.
He slammed the closet door shut and bolted the lock. “One of the hall guards reported noise coming from this area. We came as soon as we heard.”
Duke patted my shoulder. “Let me know if I can help, Elliot.” I could hear his keys clanging as he walked down the hall humming “Duke of Earl,” that old sixties song he loved. That’s where he got his nickname.

“Up to their old tricks again, Elliot?” Doc asked on the way to his office.

Catherine, thanks so much for stopping by. So, why don’t you tell us a little about yourself?
I’ve been married for half a century, but I still feel as young as I did in high school, mainly I think because I keep active. Zumba is my favorite way to exercise. You can get lost in the haunting melodies and the exotic moves. I recently wrote a book for women about to retire and retired women called Fire Up Your Life: 101 Ways for Women to Reinvent Themselves. It’s predicated on the idea that you never have to grow old and crochety.

I have three daughters and five grandchildren, who bring me endless happiness and keep me young. For 31 years I worked in the Philadelphia School System as a teacher, department head, and disciplinarian. After that, I worked for Temple University as a student teaching supervisor, mentoring and observing future teachers. After retiring, I became a full-time writer. Most of my books were traditionally published. This is my first self-published book, other than a girls’ prayer book I received the rights back for from a religious company.

How did you get started writing?
I’ve written all my life simply because I had to. Writing gives me great satisfaction, and it’s what I like to do best. In fact, I’d rather write than eat or sleep.

Before I retired from the school system, I didn’t have time to write, but I thought about it every day. When I was still working, I wrote magazine articles, but after I left my job, I started writing in earnest. My first published work was a study guide for an educational company for the works of the YA author, Cynthia Voigt. After that, I wrote a grammar book for the same company, and I’ve been writing ever since. I’ve written five books about bullying, and the subject of this interview, Elliot K. Carnucci is a Big, Fat Loser: A Book About Bullying is my latest. This book is closest to my heart because I think it vividly describes one child’s fight against bullying. I’ve also written two prayer books for teens and many grammar/writing books.

What was the inspiration for your book?
Elliot, the main character in Elliot K. Carnucci is a Big, Fat Loser, came to me one day and asked me to write his story. How could I refuse? He was a persistent character who tugged at my heartstrings.

I also felt close to Mr. Boardly, his friend and mentor in the story, In real life, he was a school custodian named Scotty we in Lincoln High School all knew and loved. Unfortunately, he died in a tragic accident. However, now he lives on in the character I patterned after him.

The main setting in Elliot is a city high school, which I’m very familiar with since I’ve worked in schools all my life. The other setting of the book, the funeral home where Elliot lives with his dad and Nonna, his grandmother, was somewhat unfamiliar to me. I did extensive research on the funeral business to gain an understanding of what people in that business actually deal with each day and how they help themselves cope with it. Learning about the business was quite an eye-opener and scary at times, but I enjoyed doing the research, and I think it gave the story an authenticity it wouldn’t have if I hadn’t learned about it.

What’s the one genre you haven’t written in yet that you’d like to?
I love writing non-fiction as well as fiction. That said, I’d like to write a book related to psychic phenomena. I’m an intuitive who does readings and find it fascinating. I read any book I can get my hands on about the supernatural. As Hamlet said, “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”

So, what are you working on right now? Got any releases planned, or still writing?
I’m trying to market another bully book called Cool Things to Do While a Bully’s Bugging You. In addition to Elliot K. Carnucci is a Big, Fat Loser, I’ve just released that women’s retirement book I mentioned. I’d love it if your readers would write to me about any topic related to reading or writing. My website is It lists my address.

Alright, now for some totally random, fun questions. Favorite color?
My favorite colors are turquoise, fuchsia, and any shades of blue or pink. Once we had our shingles painted turquoise and the neighbors thought we were weird hippies. I could tell by the way they scowled at us. I do Reiki healing (hands on healing), and I use color a lot when practicing it. I try to think of which color will best help the person. Often it turns out to be their favorite color.

Favorite movie?
My favorite movie of all time is an oldie: “Splendor in the Grass” with Natalie Wood and Warren Beatty. It was very daring for its time, having dealt with pre-marital sex, although the two principles in the movie never actually did it.

I also loved “Life is Beautiful,” an Italian film. I think it was the most touching movie I’ve ever seen.

Book that inspired you to become an author?
I loved Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye because it was a great story and because he knew how to get inside the minds of his characters. I also love that it kept me laughing—and crying. I always try to keep his ability to move people emotionally in mind when I write a story. It was a prime motivator when I wrote Elliot.

Alright, you have one superpower. What is it?
I would like be able to channel without being self-conscious or nervous. I have done it once in a while and it’s an awesome experience, but it is kind of frightening in a way.

You can have dinner with any 3 people, dead, alive, fictitious, etc. Who are they?
I’d love to have dinner with Anne Frank. Despite the atrocities she and her family endured, she believed that people were basically good. That goes against what some major religions espouse. They believe we were born in sin and constantly have to fight our evil impulses. However, I much prefer Anne Frank’s ideas.

I’d also like to have lunch with the singer Andrea Bocelli. He has a golden voice that sounds like it came from another world. I’d love to ask him how he feels when he sings, what he thinks about when he’s performing, and how he got his start in singing.

Finally, I’d like to talk to Anderson Cooper because I think he’s the most compassionate interviewer around. I’d ask him what the most important lessons he’s learned from people were. I’d ask him about his most interesting interviews and his most difficult ones.

Last question: Which of your characters are you most like and how/why?
I believe I’m most like Nonna, the grandmother in my story, Elliot K Carnucci is a Big, Fat Loser. I speak my mind as she does, but I listen when others talk as she also does. Like Nonna, I’m outrageous sometimes. I wear bright colors and wild outfits and do things most women my age wouldn’t dream of doing. She also believes that love and romance should never fade as you get older. Viva Nonna! I totally agree.

Catherine will be awarding a $20 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. So the more you comment, the better your chances of winning.

June 17 SECOND STOP Shelf Full of Books
June 20 SECOND STOP: The Write to Read
June 25: Room With Books
June 25 SECOND STOP: TeacherWriter
June 27 SECOND STOP: The Pen and Muse Book Reviews
July 8: Angela Myron
July 8 SECOND STOP: Booker Like a Hooker CANCELLED
July 10 SECOND STOP LizaOConnor-Author
July 11: Books Direct
July 18: Bunny's Reviews

Author Bio and Links:
Catherine DePino has sold thirteen books for parents, teachers, and children to mainstream publishers. She self-published her fourteenth book, Elliot K. Carnucci is a Big, Fat Loser: A Book About Bullying because she wanted to give it a wider forum. Her background includes a BS in English and Spanish education, a Master’s in English education, and a doctorate in Curriculum Theory and Development and Educational Administration from Temple University. The author worked for many years as an English teacher, department head of English and world languages, disciplinarian, and curriculum writer in the Philadelphia School District. After this, she worked at Temple as an adjunct assistant professor and student teaching supervisor.

Catherine has also written articles for national magazines, including The Christian Science Monitor and The Writer.

For many years she served on the board of The Philadelphia Writers’ Conference.  She holds membership in the Association of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.

Her new self-help book, 101 Easy Ways for Women to De-Stress, Reinvent, and Fire Up Your Life in Retirement,appeared on the market in March, 2014.


Monday, July 14, 2014

Somebody to Love Blog Tour

For Phineas Bell, love has not only been out of reach, it has been impossible. In a world where men who love other men are anathema, he has poured his love into his work, his town, and the friends who accept him as family. But when a handsome new lodger takes over his home and his heart, breaking all his careful rules, Phin must choose between playing it safe and letting love in.

War hero Elliott Tucker is the answer to Cold Springs’s prayers for a sheriff worth his salt. But with every single woman in town throwing themselves at him, Elliott has eyes for only one person: Phin. The sparks are hot between then, but in spite of Elliott’s best efforts, Phin’s heart proves the toughest nut to crack. A love that starts with fire threatens to burn them both…

… until a shocking abduction throws Phin and Elliott together on the trail of ruthless kidnappers. Will their efforts to save a child wrench them apart or will it prove that at last they’ve found somebody to love?

Get Somebody to Love on Amazon, Amazon UK, Smashwords, Barnes & Noble, and iBooks.

Merry, thanks so much for stopping by. So, why don’t you tell us a little about yourself?
Thanks so much for having me!  Hi, my name is Merry Farmer, and I’m an author.  Specifically, I’m an indie author.  I’ve never really been interested in traditional publishing.  I have too many stories across too many genres with too many weird, unusual, quirky, fun twists to them to fit into all the usual boxes.  My imagination cannot be contained by NYC.

How did you get started writing?
I’ve been writing pretty much as long as I could.  I have a very distinct memory of being in 3rd grade, 10 years old, sitting at my desk practically dying with my wishes that the teacher would assign us a creative writing project.  Then it hit me: I didn’t have to wait to be assigned to write a story, I could just do it on my own.  And the rest, as they say, is history.  So really, I’ve been writing consistently for about 30 years!

What was the inspiration for your book?
Somebody to Love is actually the seventh book that takes place in the world I’ve created in the fictional town of Cold Springs, Montana.  (I should add that each of the books in this series stands alone and you don’t need to have read any of the others to enjoy Somebody to Love)  But the character of Phineas Bell was an integral part of the overall story of Cold Springs and its people from the day I first conceived of it.  He’s been a crucial character for several of the books (particularly Our Little Secrets and Sarah Sunshine).  I knew that eventually he would have his own love story, though.  It had to happen.  He’s too wonderful of a man to go long without someone adoring him.  Also, between you and me, and don’t tell anyone, the character of Phin is loosely based on a dear friend of mine from high school.

What’s the one genre you haven’t written in yet that you’d like to?
I have all sorts of story ideas conceived in my mind across a lot of different genres, particularly historical romance, science fiction, and inspirational romance.  I have one story idea rolling around my head that I haven’t written yet that is a sort of time travel adventure series.  It has romance in it, but I wouldn’t consider it a romance novel.  I can’t wait to find time to write that one!

Are there any genres you won’t read or write in? Why?
I don’t read or write erotica.  It just doesn’t appeal to me.  I have nothing against it, mind you, but it’s not my bag, so to speak.

So, what are you working on right now? Got any releases planned, or still writing?
I just published the first two books in a science fiction series about the beginnings of civilization on a habitable moon light-years away from Earth.  The series, Grace’s Moon, follows the lives of a group of settlers who were on their way to Earth’s first colony when their transport ship explodes.  They have to find a place to land, begin a new settlement, and figure out if the destruction of the transport ship was an accident (spoiler alert: it wasn’t) and how to deal with the consequences of that.  Like I said, the first two books, Saving Grace and Fallen From Grace, are out now, and I’m working on the second two books, O’er the Silent Waters and Through the Depths of Night, whose main characters are the children of the main characters in the first two books.  Lots of action, lots of fight scenes, a little bit of romance, and enough tension to keep you turning pages!  I have plans to write more in this series down the line dealing with descendants of the original characters.

Alright, now for some totally random, fun questions. Favorite color?    Red

Favorite movie?  Oh gosh, I have so many!  Love Actually, Labyrinth, and a Bollywood movie called Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, just to name a few.

Book that inspired you to become an author?  I don’t know that it was a specific book that inspired me to be an author, but I did read voraciously as a child.  The Encyclopedia Brown books, the Chronicles of Narnia, and anything by L.M. Montgomery were some of my favorites.

Alright, you have one superpower. What is it?   Healing.  Definitely healing.  I have lost far too many people to cancer and other illnesses to consider anything else.

You can have dinner with any 3 people, dead, alive, fictitious, etc. Who are they?   Hmm…  I think Mark Twain would be really entertaining at a dinner party.  I’d also love to invite J.K. Rowling, particularly if Mark Twain was coming.  The conversation would pop!  And I’d also invite my mom, who passed away in 2001, because I have so much to tell her, and she would love to watch Mark Twain and J.K. Rowling banter!

Last question: Which of your characters are you most like and how/why?
I think I’m the most like Grace Hargrove from the Grace’s Moon series.  I’ve got that same blend of determination, vision, and naiveté that she’s got, unfortunately.  Although she’s much better at organizing people than I am!

That’s all from me, thanks so much for taking the time to stop by!
Thank you so much for having me. I love sharing my boys around :)

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Author Bio:
Merry Farmer lives in suburban Philadelphia with her two cats, Butterfly and Torpedo. She has been writing since she was ten years old and realized one day that she didn't have to wait for the teacher to assign a creative writing project to write something. It was the best day of her life. She then went on to earn not one but two degrees in History so that she would always have something to write about. Today she walks along the cutting edge of Indie Publishing, writing Historical Romance and Sci-Fi. She is also passionate about blogging, knitting, and cricket and is working towards becoming an internationally certified cricket scorer.

Find Merry Farmer on her websiteFacebookTwitter, and Amazon Author Page.