The Cranky Ladies of History Blog Hop

FableCroft

Cranky Ladies of History

Blog Tour

 

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Late in 2013, Australian writer and editor Liz Barr blogged about Tsaritsa Sophia Alekseyevna of Russia, dubbing her one of history’s great “cranky ladies”. Being the editor I am, I immediately thought of several fantastic writers I would love to see write short stories about history’s cranky ladies, those women who bucked the trends of their time and took on cultural norms to challenge society’s rules and ideas about how women should behave. Within just a few days, I had the project idea fully formed, had brought historian, editor and multi award-winning writer Tansy Rayner Roberts on board as co-editor, and we had begun the process of soliciting authors to submit. The speed at which projects can come into being is perhaps one of the biggest advantages a boutique press like FableCroft Publishing has, and we use it well!

fab weeks, the feedback and response from readers and writers everywhere proved so positive that Tansy and I started looking at ways we could take the project to the full heights it deserves, and we conceived the idea of crowdfunding for the anthology, in order to be able to pay our authors, artists and designer the pro-rates they really deserve.

We have been so fortunate to have an astonishing selection of authors express interest in writing for us, from all over the world.

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Isn’t that just an awesome group of people?! We are so delighted to have multi-award winning author Jane Yolen confirmed for the anthology, and stories already in hand from some authors. While we have established and award-winning novelists and short story writers keen to be part of the book, we are also dedicated to supporting emerging writers, and are very excited to see what all our writers bring to the Cranky Ladies table (of contents).

Which Cranky Ladies might they be?

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Part of the brief for writers was that we were aiming for a diverse range of cultures, historical periods and reasons for historical notoriety, and we think we’re doing okay on that front – it was great fun reading the story pitches for the anthology and discovering wonderful women from history we wanted to know more about!

If you would like to support the the Cranky Ladies of History Pozible campaign, you can do so here – thank you!

http://pozible.com.au/crankyladies

Tour Stops

Cranky Ladies of History: the crowd-funding campaign

Tansy: Prelude to a crowd-funding

FableCroft: Kicking off the Tour – the Night Witches

Tansy: Cranky Ladies of History are GO

The History Girls: Cranky Ladies of History

Faith Mudge: Let’s Have A Rousing Discussion About Truth, Dragons and Historically Authentic Sexism

Sue Bursztynski: Margaret Bulkley, Dr Barry

Lee Battersby: Charlotte Corday

Joyce Chng: Leizu

Laura Lam: The Lioness of Brittany, Jeanne de Clisson

Lyn Battersby: Watch out! A cranky lady resides here

Ann Martin via FableCroft: Lottie Lyell (Australian film frontier-woman!)

Tansy Rayner Roberts via Champagne and Socks: History, fiction and cranky ladies

Tansy Rayner Roberts: Cranky Ladies, Horrible Histories & Mary Seacole

Joan Lennon via History Girls: Mary Anning in my mind

Dianne Touchell: Let’s talk about sex baby (Josephine Butler)

Kaia Landelius: Queen Margareta of Sweden

Benjamin T Smith: Joan of Arc

Narrelle M Harris: Euphemia Allen and “Chopsticks”

Tansy Rayner Roberts via SF Signal: Let’s talk about Cranky Ladies

Sylvia Kelso: Lilian Cooper, MD, FRACS: Writing a Cranky Lady in History, One

Elanor Matton-Johnson: Lady Jane Grey

Alex Pierce: The Pankhurst Women

Bess Lyre via FableCroft: Khadija

Juliet Marillier via FableCroft: Hildegard of Bingen

Liz Barr: Janet Kincaid

Kaia Landelius: Queen Kristina of Sweden

ABC News Online: Cranky Ladies article!

Gillian Polack via FableCroft: Helen Leonard

Narrelle M Harris: Lola Montez and the arts of beauty

Pamela Freeman: Lores Bonney

Tehani Wessely: Australian Children’s Authors of History

Mary-Louise Jensen via The History Girls: Aphra Behn

Katherine Roberts via The History Girls: Time and Boudica’s Daughters

Elizabeth Fremantle via The History Girls: Katherine Parr – Character, Courage and Commitment

Nicky Strickland: Boudicca

Alex Pierce & Tehani Wessely: Galactic Chat

Penny Dolan: The Book of Bossy Girls

Theresa Breslin via The History Girls: Cranky Old Lady

Celia Rees via The History Girls: Fight for the Right – Emily Davison and the Internet

NM Harris: Julie d’Aubigny aka La Maupin

Tansy Rayner Roberts via The History Girls: Sulpicia

LM Myles: 10 great military leaders, probably cranky ones

Tehani via Stephanie Burgis: Henry Handel Richardson

Bess Lyre via FableCroft: Tarenorerer

SF Signal included us in their crowdfunding roundup!

Kaaron Warren via Gillian Polack: Dr Emma Constance Stone

Aidan Doyle: Sei Shonagan

Jason Nahrung via Gillian Polack: Emilie Louise Flöge

Alex Isle via Gillian Polack: Mary Read (and Anne Bonney)

Jason Franks via Gillian Polack: Celia Franca

RJ Barker via Gillian Polack: Margaret of Anjou

Carrie Vaughn via Gillian Polack: Lilia Litviak and Ekaterina Budanova

Elizabeth Chadwick via The History Girls: Empress Matilda, having the right to be cranky

Marianne de Pierres via FableCroft: Jean d’Orléans

Becky Ferreira via Motherboard: Émilie du Châtelet (how cool is it how many cranky ladies posts out there, even when they aren’t written just for us?!)

Smexy, Witty Shehanne Moore and Loving Lady Lazuli

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Loving Lady Lazuli

By Shehanne Moore

Genre: Historical Romance  Published: 2104 Etopia Press

 A woman not even the ghost of Sapphire could haunt…

Only one man in England can identify her. Unfortunately he’s living next door.

Ten years ago sixteen year old Sapphire, the greatest jewel thief England has ever known, ruined Lord Devorlane Hawley’s life. Now she’s dead and buried, all the respectable widow, Cassidy Armstrong, wants is the chance to prove who she really is.

 A man who knows exactly who she is…

 But not only does her new neighbor believe he knows that exactly, he’s hell-bent on revenge.  All he needs is the actual proof.  So when he asks her to choose between being his mistress, or dangling on the end of a rope, only Sapphire can decide…

 What’s left for a woman with nowhere left to go, but to stay exactly where she is?

 And hope, that when it comes to neighbors, Devorlane Hawley won’t prove to be the one from hell.

Buy Links:

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

All Romance Ebooks

Kobo

Reviews on Loving Lady Lazuli:

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Excerpt:

She leaned forward and brushed his lips with hers. The feel of him, even through the linen bed sheet, would only be terrifying if she let it. Actually the feel of him hard as iron made tiny bubbles of pleasure fizz in her blood. And his sensuous mouth was sweet as any fruit when she nuzzled it like this.

“So don’t be coy,” she whispered against it. “Or I’ll have to tie your ankles as well.”

“Is that so, Miss Armstrong?”

“Cassidy. You should call me it.”

He shifted suddenly. The air left her body in a startled gasp even as she reached for the bedrail and landed on her back on the mattress. Now he was on top, his breath brushing her lips, her hair, as he gazed down into her eyes. The look had changed somewhat from a second ago when it seemed she’d mesmerized him, to something where his eyes fought to recover their contemptuous glare, their hardened poise, and were therefore a great deal more predatory because of it.

More so, his straight-browed, intent perusal of her. Then there was the matter of the stray hair ends falling like a curtain across his face. The dark stubble outlining his jaw and upper lip.

What would it take to overcome her defenses? That wall she had systematically erected around herself? Nothing at this moment in time.

“Well, Cassidy, we do it this way, or I won’t be able to stop myself.”

About The Author

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Shehanne Moore writes gritty, witty, historical romance, set wherever takes her fancy. What hasn’t she worked at while pursuing her dream of becoming a published author? Shehanne still lives in Scotland, with her husband Mr Shey. She has two daughters. When not writing intriguing historical romance, where goals and desires of sassy, unconventional heroines and ruthless men, mean worlds collide, she plays the odd musical instrument and loves what in any other country, would not be defined, as hill-walking.

Other Books by Shehanne Moore

The Judas Bride

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To love, honor, and betray…

To get back her son, she will stop at nothing…

For five years Kara McGurkie has preferred to forget she’s a woman. So it’s no problem for her to swear to love and honor, to help destroy a clan, when it means getting back the son she lost. But when dire circumstances force her to seduce her fiancé’s brother on the eve of the wedding, will the dark secrets she holds and her greatest desire be enough to save her from his powerful allure?

To save his people, neither will he…
Callm McDunnagh, the Black Wolf of Lochalpin, ruthlessly guards heart and glen from dangerous intruders. But from the moment he first sees Kara he knows he must possess her, even though surrendering to his passion may prove the most dangerous risk of all.

She has nothing left to fear except love itself…
Now only Kara can decide what passion can save or destroy, and who will finally learn the truth of the words…Till death do us part.

Amazon
Barnes and Noble
All Romance Ebooks

The Unraveling Of Lady Fury

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Rule One: There will be no kissing. Rule two: There will be no touching…

Widowed Lady Fury Shelton hasn’t lost everything—yet. As long as she produces the heir to the Beaumont dukedom, she just might be able to keep her position. And her secrets. But when the callously irresistible Captain James “Flint” Blackmoore sails back into her life, Lady Fury panics. She must find a way to protect herself—and her future—from the man she’d rather see rotting in hell than sleeping in her bed. If she must bed him to keep her secrets, so be it. But she doesn’t have to like it. A set of firm rules for the bedroom will ensure that nothing goes awry. Because above all else, she must stop herself from wanting the one thing that Flint can never give her. His heart.

Ex-privateer Flint Blackmoore has never been good at following the rules. Now, once again embroiled in a situation with the aptly named Lady Fury, he has no idea why he doesn’t simply do the wise thing and walk away. He knows he’s playing with fire, and that getting involved with her again is more dangerous than anything on the high seas. But he can’t understand why she’s so determined to hate him. He isn’t sure if the secret she keeps will make things harder—or easier—for him, but as the battle in the bedroom heats up, he knows at least one thing. Those silly rules of hers will have to go…

Amazon
Barnes and Noble
All Romance Ebooks

KC Sprayberry: Evil Eyes Book Tour

 

 

Kc Sprayberry Release Day Event

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Evil Eyes

March 17 – March 21, 2014

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Will Lisa survive Fred’s evil intent?

Lisa is so ready for a break from the grueling first semester of college. Along with five other friends, she returns to Landry, and hopes to have nothing but fun. Within days, one of the group is the victim of a vindictive stalker, and Lisa herself is now in the man’s sights. No matter what she does, she can’t shake this person.

Fred has a little problem, but he figures he can take care of it himself, if he achieves fame with his folk rock band, Olney-Oak Lane Sounds. Then he happens to see this beautiful woman, who turns out to be just like every other woman he’s met. He takes care of her, and is immediately drawn to Lisa. No one will get between Fred and Lisa, absolutely no one.

On Christmas Eve, Lisa has to fight for her life and sanity after Fred kidnaps her. She turns out to be very different from the other women, in a way he never figured.

 Buy Links: 

 http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00J1QC3V8

YouTube Book Trailer:

Link: http://youtu.be/P3NIjCsbieE

 

Excerpt 1:

A man stands inches from her. She didn’t hear him coming. Christine cups her burgeoning belly, fear drying her tongue to the roof of her mouth.

“Whore!” The man points at her belly. “We had a committed relationship, and you screwed another man. There’s the evidence right in front of my eyes. You’re nothing but a whore.”

His eyes scare the life out of her. They’re dead, soulless, compelling. She can’t move, no matter how much she wants to.

Tears wash her face. She’s trapped, with nowhere to turn, but to dive into the lake and try to swim before the freezing water paralyzes her muscles. That would mean endangering her baby. She can’t move, can’t put this little life in so much danger. Yet, she’s in danger from this man approaching her step by step.

 

Excerpt 2:

The person who sent this is Lisa Andres – a beauty queen, a person who looks like she’ll never laugh at him, a gorgeous girl that he can be proud to sing to at his concerts. He trudges away with Christine’s phone tucked into a pocket. No one will find this lying bitch. She’s nothing. She’s forever gone.

Lisa occupies Fred’s mind now. Lisa is his new girlfriend. Lisa will soon know this.

“No one will stop me from getting to my Lisa.” Fred pulls out the iPhone and stares at her picture. “So beautiful. Beautiful face. Beautiful red hair – like fire. She’s all mine.”

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21472973-evil-eyes

 

About The Author

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 KC Sprayberry started writing young, first as a diarist, and later through an interest in English and creative writing. Her first experience with publication came when she placed third in The Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge contest while in the Air Force, but her dedication to writing came after she had her youngest child, now in his senior year of high school.

Her family lives in Northwest Georgia where she spends her days creating stories about life in the south, and far beyond. More than a dozen of her short stories have appeared in several magazines. Five anthologies feature other short stories. She has three books that are Amazon best sellers: Softly Say Goodbye, Who Am I?, and Mama’s Advice. Her other novels available are: Take Chances, The Ghost Catcher, Family Curse … Times Two, Secret From The Flames, Where U @, The Wrong One, and Grace.

Get In touch with KC Sprayberry:

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/KC-Sprayberry/331150236901202

Twitter: https://twitter.com/kcsowriter

Blog: http://outofcontrolcharacters.blogspot.com/

Website: www.kcsprayberry.com

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5011219.K_C_Sprayberry

JacketFlap: http://www.jacketflap.com/profile.asp?member=kathispray

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B005DI1YOU

Google +: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+KcSprayberry/posts

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/kcsprayberry/boards/

Authorgraph: http://www.authorgraph.com/authors/kcsowriter

AUTHORSdB: http://www.authorsdb.com/authors-directory/5230-k-c-sprayberry

Manic Readers: http://www.manicreaders.com/KCSprayberry/

 

A Bit O' Irish Mini Blog Hop

And the winners are:

Gift cards: Deb F, Stephanie G, Tina M, Laurel L.

Ebooks: Paul M, Susan S, Stephanie G, Raeline P, Cathy C, Amy B, Jay I, Tammy O’, Janice C.

Join us for some Blarney and bits and pieces of the Emerald Isle.

Sign up now through March 17, 2014

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Welcome to the Bit O’ Irish mini blog hop.

Rules: bloggers must post something Irish, even if it is vacation pics taken while on the Isle. Participants may join in any day before St. Patrick’s Day. Please make sure to visit fellow hoppers. If you would like to add something to the  main giveaway, please notify me with a comment. All participants are welcome to add their own giveaways on their site. Erin Go Bragh!

 So we all love St. Patrick’s Day and the rolling green hills of Ireland. We love the enduring human spirit that characterizes the Irish people. The holiday should be about this:

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But instead becomes more about this:

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But no matter how you celebrate this Celtic holiday, make sure you have some fun this week. Post a favorite Irish ditty, limerick, symbol, saying, picture or recipe. As with the Irish, anything goes.

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We will be spotlighting Jill Bisker’s inspirational story Within Reach and giving away a variety of ebooks and two $5 Amazon gift card.

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Within Reach is the story of Emma, a woman coming to terms with her mother’s increasing dementia and the everyday challenges associated with it.  Inexplicably, she finds herself ‘re-living’ specific events from her past.  She soon wonders if her own sanity is slipping, and only her mother can help find the key.

About The Author

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 Jill Bisker lives in Stillwater, MN with her husband and a calico cat named Senora, and a grown son who is in college. She believes in empowering women to be strong enough to protect themselves, while still soft enough to be loving and compassionate. Her work includes paranormal mystery, traditional high fantasy, as well as contemporary and humorous fantasy and an everyday living blog. Once a dedicated stay at home Mom, Jill now writes full-time.

Connect with Jill:

Facebook Page:     https://www.facebook.com/authorjillbisker

Pinterest Page:  http://www.pinterest.com/jillbisker/

Website/Blog: www.jillbisker.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JillBisker

Google +:  https://plus.google.com/u/0/102225571446174386202

Email: jkatbisker@gmail.com

 

Join in the Blarney. Click on the Pot of Gold below for a chance to win cash prizes great reads.

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Choose from the following ebooks:

      Within Reach

      By Jill Bisker

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Merry Christmas, Henry

By Aubrey Wynne

Contemporary Romance

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Morna

By Mary Kate Brogan 
(Romance set in 1950’s Ireland)

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Symphony of Light and Winter      Imposter’s Kiss

By Renea Mason

Paranormal Romance

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Click below to add your link. Remember to stop by these blogs for more luck o’ the Irish:

    http://new.inlinkz.com//luwpview.php?id=381178

 
Note: When you add your link, you can copy and paste the thumbnails to your page and the links will be all done for you. Less work and more time for green beer and corned beef with cabbage.

Romantic Suspense: Nick Spinelli Series by Valerie Clarizio

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Craving Vengeance, a Nick Spinelli Mystery

Nick Spinelli’s normal life as a homicide detective has been catapulted into a whirlwind of chaotic holiday adventures ever since he met the beautiful Shannon O’Hara.

Nick had hoped to spend his first Valentine’s Day with Shannon in a traditional manner, starting with a nice dinner out on the town and then perhaps a long warm adventurous night in her arms. His plans quickly change when cupid is found murdered in a back alley. The investigation becomes more and more inconceivable,as Spinelli discovers that Shannon is linked to the victim.

When another cupid turns up dead, and it is discovered that Shannon knows him as well, Spinelli is motivated to go undercover as a singing valentine dressed as cupid, complete with wings and a quiver of arrows. How many other cupids are at risk? Is Spinelli on the killer’s list as well? The stress ignited by the day’s events causes sparks to fly between Spinelli and Shannon as he struggles to piece it all together and stop the string of slayings.

Buy Links:

Amazon

Melange-Books LLC

Excerpt:

Spinelli’s eyes popped open. He stared into the face of an angel. Was he still sleeping? How was it he had lured this beautiful creature into his life just a little over two months ago? He resisted the urge to run his fingers over her soft, milky white skin. She looked so peaceful when she slept. He would never be bored watching her sleep. Her slow even breaths mesmerized him. Was he dreaming? He almost went so far as to pinch his arm.

Shannon stirred and flipped over. Her shiny red hair spread out over her pillow like wildfire. He didn’t need the nearby streetlight peeking through the window blinds to notice her fiery hair, but it certainly helped to illuminate its zest. Spinelli reached over and skimmed his hand over her soft hair. Silky strands sifted through his fingers sending an electrical current rippling throughout his body. He debated waking her, taking her again. He nearly chuckled at the thought. When they’d first met, they couldn’t stand to be with one another, now they couldn’t stand to be apart. Cupid’s arrow struck him, hard and fast, out of nowhere. He was done, toast.

His cell phone vibrated on the nightstand. He reached over her to grab it before it woke her. Too late. Her beautiful emerald eyes fluttered open. He stared into the sea of green looking back at him, nearly forgetting about the call.

Her full ruby red lips stretched into a soft smile. “Nick, your phone is vibrating.”

His ears focused on the sweet sound of his name rolling off her tongue. No one ever called him by his first name. Everyone called him Spinelli or Detective, even Shannon did when they first met. But at some point over the past couple of months, she had started calling him by his first name. It nearly drove him insane every time she said it. His heart raced. He should take her again.

“Nick,” she whispered, knocking him out of his reverie.

“What?”

“Your phone is still humming.”

“Oh, yeah.”

He grabbed his phone from the nightstand. The time in the upper right-hand corner read 4:00 a.m. Captain Jackson’s face flashed across the screen. He tapped the screen and held the phone to his ear. “Spinelli here.”

“Rise and shine, Spinelli. We got one for you, down on Water Street. Male, late 20’s, cause of death not obvious. I’ve already texted you the address. The officers on the scene are cordoning off the premises.”

Though he wasn’t a morning person, not even close, a rush of adrenaline crashed through him like a tidal wave. This is what he lived for, catching killers. He sprang out of bed as Jackson’s words trailed off. “I’m on it,” Spinelli rasped before he disconnected the call.

He retrieved his contact list and tapped Detective Walker’s profile. Walker answered with a growl. Spinelli gave him the details; then he did the same with Detective Marsh.

Spinelli slid into a pair of jeans and pulled a long sleeved navy polo shirt over his head. He grabbed his Beretta 9mm from his nightstand and secured it in his holster before he slung the chain connected to his gold detective badge over his head.

He’d nearly leaped through the bedroom door before he remembered Shannon still lay in his bed, entwined in his comforter. He’d rather it be that she were intertwined with him. He spun on his heel and in two long, quick steps was at her bedside.

Her bright green gaze fixed on him. An amused look covered her face. He knelt down beside the bed. “I gotta go.”

“I gathered that.”

“So I’ll pick you up at your place tonight at 7:00?” he asked, confirming their dinner date.

“Yes…no.”

Spinelli arched a brow. “No?”

Shannon rubbed her eyes. “I mean yes to dinner, but can we push it back to 8:00? I know that’s getting late, but I’m scheduled to do the singing valentines for the church fundraiser from 4:00 until 7:00.”

“Oh, okay. I’ll change the dinner reservation.”

He leaned forward and brushed his lips lightly across hers. He knew he had to keep it light or he wouldn’t be able to leave.

She didn’t play fair. She reached up, wrapped her arms around his neck, and pulled him to her. He let her, he was weak. His mind was mush.

He responded to her demand for more and deepened the kiss. His tongue passed through her lips. She tasted sweet. How did she always taste so sweet? His heart pounded in his chest.

Suddenly, Captain Jackson’s words from moments ago echoed in his head. We got one for you, down on Water Street. Male, late 20’s, cause of death not obvious. Christ, he’d nearly forgotten he had a dead body to attend to.

He pried his lips from Shannon’s, nearly needing the help of a mechanic with a crowbar.

He rose to his feet, willing his knees to support him. She always left him weak-kneed, and she probably didn’t have a clue. “I’ll see you tonight. I have a special Valentine’s evening planned for us.”

* * * *

Shannon watched Nick walk out the door, sure that if he were to turn and look at her one more time with those dark charcoal eyes, she’d probably melt in an instant. He had the most intense eyes.

She curled into a ball and pulled the thick comforter up around her neck. His masculine scent coated the soft material, stimulating her senses, as if his mouthwatering kiss hadn’t already left her completely aroused. She wished he hadn’t had to leave. Another round of lovemaking would have been ideal. She’d had a taste of him, and now she couldn’t seem to get enough.

She giggled at the thought of their rocky start. When she’d first met him she thought he was the most cold-hearted, egotistical human being she’d ever met. She’d never been more wrong in her life. He turned out to be exactly the opposite. Never in her life had she met anyone so caring, giving, and loving. His rough exterior was just a front he used to shield himself, as a result of his unfortunate upbringing. Growing up on the streets with a drug-addicted mother certainly took its toll on him.

A sense of pride crept through her as she thought about all he’d accomplished; finishing high school on his own after his mother died when he was only sixteen, then going on to college, and becoming one of M
ilwaukee’s finest homicide detectives. It took a strong person to accomplish such. She admired his strength and determination.

 covertexposurevjc

Covert Exposure, a Nick Spinelli Mystery

Detective Spinelli’s life is tossed sideways when he is reassigned from the Homicide division to assist in the Child Services division of the Social Services Department for the holiday season. From the beginning, Spinelli and Caseworker Shannon O’Hara generate their own kind of fireworks, causing more than the normal workplace stress. They both have their own philosophies for dealing with the clientele. However, the forces of nature have their own plan for Spinelli and Shannon.

Shannon moonlights as Santa Claus’ little helper at the mall, and when Santa and an elf turn up dead Shannon appears to be next on the killer’s list. Spinelli is placed back on homicide and goes undercover as Santa to help capture the killer. He catches a great deal of grief along the way but will he capture the heart of his little Santa’s helper as well?

Buy Links:

Amazon

Melange-Books LLC

Excerpt:

Spinelli followed Shannon to her office, unable to peel his eyes from her shapely legs. His nostrils narrowed, sucking in every ounce of the sweet scent that lingered in the air behind her. She gestured for him to take a seat in a chair opposite her desk. Her phone rang and she picked up the receiver as she sat down. As she spoke on the telephone, he scanned her small office memorizing every detail like detectives tend to do. He couldn’t help but notice how just a touch of feminine warmth accented the professional décor. His eyes shifted from the photo of an older couple, perhaps in their early seventies, to a photo of three little red-headed boys. He wondered if the boys belonged to her. He glanced at her left hand, no ring.

Shannon hung up the phone receiver. “I’m sorry about that, Detective Spinelli,” she said as she thumbed through the mounds of neatly organized stacks of case files on her desk, “here it is…the Washington file.”

Spinelli watched as she flipped the file open and lost herself in the information for a brief moment. She blew out a sigh and looked up at him. He could easily see the sadness flood her big green eyes. Shannon cleared her throat. “The authorities picked up Gilbert Washington early this morning as a result of a domestic abuse call.”

“What happened? What did he do?” he asked as he leaned back in his chair and crossed his arms over his chest.

“Apparently the neighbor placed the 911 call when he heard Gilbert and his wife, Charmane, arguing. A loud thud followed the arguing. The neighbor assumed the cause of the thud was Gilbert throwing Charmane against the wall. As it turned out the neighbor was right. Unfortunately the kids witnessed the entire exchange.”

Shannon shook her head. “We’ve offered Charmane assistance for herself and her children but she refuses to leave Gilbert. As a result, today we will be removing the children from the home and placing them in foster care.”

“Why does she refuse to leave him?”

“Scared perhaps.” Shannon sighed and shook her head. “And he’s probably her crack supplier.”

“Is Gilbert still in lockup?”

“Yes, so it would probably be a good idea to head over there and remove the children before he’s released.”

“I’ll get my unmarked and meet you up front,” Spinelli replied as he sprang to his feet and headed for the door. Before his third step hit the floor he heard Shannon call his name. He turned to find her standing behind her desk holding up a set of keys.

He cocked his head to the side. “What?”

“We’ll take one of the vehicles assigned to Social Services. They’re fully equipped with car seats for matters such as these,” Shannon said as she handed the keys to him. “You can drive so I can review the file some more.”

“Car seats? How many children are we talking about here?”

“Three. The oldest, Lesha is seven, Darius is three and Christina is nine months old.”

Spinelli followed Shannon to the parking lot. She pointed at a dark green Dodge minivan. “That’s the one.”

He shifted his eyes from the minivan to Shannon and then back to the van. “That, we’re taking that?” No red lights, no sirens, no excitement. Life as he knew it was slipping away from him.

“Perhaps you could just get in and drive, and forget the comments,” Shannon said as she climbed in through the passenger door.

Spinelli got in on the driver’s side and started the engine. He adjusted the seat to accommodate his long legs, then the mirrors. Once he finished altering everything, he glanced over at Shannon.

“What?” she asked.

He shook his head. “I’m just wondering how I got here. Yesterday I was a homicide detective and today I’m driving a minivan that smells like sweaty socks.”

“I’m sorry you’re not pleased with your assignment but we need to get going if we are going to remove the children before Gilbert makes bail.”

Spinelli put the minivan in drive and headed toward the Washington home located just north of downtown, on Cherry Street. He knew that area could mean trouble. His senses moved into “full alert” mode.

About The Author

Clarizio Photo copy

Valerie Clarizio lives in beautiful Door County Wisconsin with her husband and extremely spoiled cat. She loves to read, write, and spend time at her cabin in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. She’s lived her life surrounded by men, three brothers, a husband, and a male Siamese cat who required his own instruction manual. Keeping up with all the men in her life has turned her into a successful hunter and fisherwoman.

She is a member of Romance Writers of America and the Wisconsin Romance Writers of America. Additionally, she was a finalist in the 2011 Celtic Hearts Romance Writers, Novellas Need Love, Too! Contest.

Keep in Touch With Valerie:

Website/Blog: http://valclarizio.wordpress.com/

Twitter:  @VClarizio

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/Valerie.Clarizio