Final Day: Meet Me at the Beach blog tour & Giveaway!


Today wraps up the blog tour for MEET ME AT THE BEACH, the contemporary small town romance I wrote with my hubby as VK Sykes. There are five stops, which means five more opportunities to enter the giveaway! There’s also an interview, a new excerpt, and a review at some of the stops too.

SOS Aloha (Interview)

Once Upon an Alpha

Sexy Book Reviews (includes review)

Book Reviews & More by Kathy

Nose Stuck In A Book

Thanks so much for celebrating release week with me! For more info on MEET ME AT THE BEACH, check out my VK Sykes website.

Have a great weekend!

Meet Me at the Beach cover

Celebrity Crushes & an Amazon Gift Card!!

Jaunty Quills

Stop on by the Jaunty Quills today, the group blog I belong to with some truly fab writers.  We’re talking about embarrassing celebrity crushes and giving away an Amazon gift card.  Click here to join us!

Guest Author: Manda Collins & Giveaway!!


I’m always excited when my good friend Manda Collins visits my blog.  Manda writes witty Regency-set historical romance with a dash of mystery.  Her next book, Why Dukes Say I Do, just received a prestigious Top Pick from RT Book Reviews.  Dukes will released on July 30th. 

But Manda has a new novella out tomorrow, and it’s another of her witty, emotionally appealing stories.  She’s here to talk with us about it!

How does your novella fit into The Ugly Ducklings Trilogy

The Perks of Being a Beautyis the story of Miss Amelia Snowe, who is the nemesis of Cecily, Juliet and Maddie in the Ugly Ducklings trilogy. In Book 3 of the trilogy, How to Entice an Earl, we see Amelia coming to the realization that she’s been behaving rather badly during her reign as the toast of the ton. Well, in The Perks we see Amelia in seriously straitened circumstances. Her mother has died, leaving Amelia not only penniless, but also owing a great deal to her mother’s creditors. Forced to make her own living, Amelia has become the companion to a wealthy cit’s daughter. It’s a far cry from being able to wind the gentlemen of the ton around her little finger! 

Your heroine is looking for redemption.  Why do you think that particular theme resonates so well with readers?

You know, I’m not all that sure it does. I know that readers have a ton of love for redeemed rakes and villains, but I think it takes a bit more for them to forgive a villainous heroines. I’m not sure if it’s because most romance readers are women, and we tend to be harder on our own sex, or what. Still, I do think there is much to touch readers hearts in this kind of story. We’ve all done things that we aren’t particularly proud of, and by watching a character like Amelia make amends to the people she’s harmed, we see the possibility for our own redemption–whether it’s harsh words to a loved one or something more serious. 

Hopefully, after seeing how truly repentant Amelia is, readers will begin to root for her.

The book trailer for The Perks of Being a Beauty is awesome.  How did you come up for the idea for it?

I’ve been a fan of the Dos Equis commercials about “The Most Interesting Man in the World” since they first came out. And I’ve been thinking about fun promo ideas for my upcoming series, but I knew that the only character who could pull off “The Most Interesting” theme was Amelia, who is somewhat larger than life in the Ducklings books. Coming up with her character traits was the most fun I’ve had in a long long time!  Readers, you can watch this adorable trailer here.

What’s up next in Manda’s writing world?


On July 30, the first book in my new Wicked Widows trilogy, Why Dukes Say I Do, will be released. I’m really excited about this new series and seeing how readers respond to it. I’ve just gotten my review from RT Book Reviews and was floored to see it was not only a Top Pick, but my hero Trevor (a real dish, if I may say so myself!) was named a Knight In Shining Silver (or K.I.S.S.) hero! “Witty and smart, Collins’ prose flows smoothly as she merges a charming, compassionate love story with gothic suspense….Add strong pacing and depth of emotion and there’s no doubt this is a winner.”

And I can’t wait to read it!  For my readers today, Manda is graciously giving away three copies of The Perks of Being a Beauty.  As someone who’s also written a book about a bad girl reformed, I’d like to talk about that.  Can you think of any heroines from books, a TV show, or movies who redeemed herself?  Three people who comment will win a copy of Manda’s novella!


Guest Author: Leslie Langtry!!

I’m so happy to have the fabulous Leslie Langtry back on my blog.  Leslie writes a “brilliantly original, laughter-rich mix of contemporary romance and suspense.”  And don’t just take my word for it, because that quote came from the acclaimed Chicago Tribune.  Shall we find out what’s going in this talented writer’s world?

Your Bombay Greatest Hits Books have been described as romantic suspense chick lit thriller.  How would you describe your writing?

I think of it more like comedy, mystery romance – but I’ve had people tell me it’s none of those things too.  My former publisher said I wrote ‘hybrid.’ It’s hard to say.  What I can say is that I write the stuff I’d like to read – something funny, with a bit of romance and a good mystery. I really want people to have an escape.  That’s what I get out of a book.  I hope they laugh along the way and are entertained.  That’s good too.

What’s the high concept for the series?

For the first book – it was a soccer mom/assassin comedy that I’d had a dream about. I wanted it to be a series – but I never thought I was smart enough to do multiple books featuring the same hero.  So each book features a different member of the Bombay Family of Assassins – The First Name in Assassination since 2000 BCE.  Sometimes it’s from a man’s point of view, sometimes it’s from a woman’s.  And each family member is unique. That makes it fun.  I like fun.

Tell us about ‘Scuse Me While I Kill This Guy

Gin Bombay – the main character – is a widowed soccer mom who divides her time between dealing with the bitchy PTA president at her daughter’s elementary school, housetraining a Pug puppy, and killing the occasional bad guy.  It was the first book I sold to New York, but the fourth book I’d written.  My critique partners told me that I’d finally found my voice.  It’s a special book to me. 

What’s up next in your writing world?

I’m almost finished with a collection of short stories featuring Bombay hits through history – SNUFF THE MAGIC DRAGON. I’m a history nerd so I’m having lots of fun with this.  I’m also working on a funny sci-fi serialization.  I got the rights back to my books a couple of years back and am exclusively indie pubbing at this point.  I love bringing out all these past projects my publisher loved but didn’t think marketable.  I think my fans will love them too.  At least, I hope they will…


Thanks for filling us in on the latest, Leslie!  Readers, you’ll be happy to hear that Leslie’s book, Stand By Your Hitman, is currently on sale for only 99 cents.  I’ve already downloaded it, and you I think you should too!  Here’s the scoop:

Assassin Missi Bombay is forced to be a contestant on SURVIVAL! (A cheap Canadian knock-off of SURVIVOR)  in order to identify and take out the bad guy – without getting attention on live TV. Check out why The Chicago Tribune said, “STAND BY YOUR HITMAN is another sure hit winner!”  It’s $.99 for a very short time! 

 Buy now:
Amazon Kindle:
Barnes & Noble Nook:

Don’t forget to check out Leslie’s website for info on all her books!


Guest Author: Kate Noble & Giveaway!!

I’m thrilled to have the awesomely talented Kate Noble visiting the blog today.  Kate is the national bestselling author of the acclaimed Blue Raven Series, earning starred reviews from Library Journal and Publisher’s Weekly (Follow My Lead), as well as a spot on the Best Romance list from Kirkus Reviews (The Summer of You) and a RITA nomination for best Regency Historical Romance (Revealed).  She’s also a member of the writing staff for the Lizzie Bennet Diaries, a modern-day adaption of Pride and Prejudice.

Let’s find out what’s going on in Kate’s world, shall we?

You studied TV and film in college, and eventually worked in that profession.  Why the switch to romance writing?

It’s not a switch!  I’ve always loved romance novels, and I’ve always loved TV, so I decided to have a career in both. I write novels, but I also work for the small and smaller screen, my latest project being The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, the hit web series retelling of Pride and Prejudice(You can visit Lizzie’s world on YouTube, folks)

How does your background in that visual medium help (or hinder) your writing?

I think it helps, honestly.  It makes me think differently about how I write my novels.  It make me think about what would be the best setting for a scene, the iconography of one place versus another.  It also makes me think about chemistry, and how much can be said without saying anything.

What can you tell us about your new book?  Is it part of a series?

My new book is set in the same Blue Raven world as my previous novels, but very much stand alone.  Bridget Forrester longs to meet a gentleman who doesn’t mention her beautiful sister (Sarah, heroine of If I Fall) upon shaking her hand. But since being branded a shrew after a disastrous social season, Bridget knows she’s lucky to even have a man come near her. It’s enough to make a lady flee the country…

So Bridget heads to Venice for music lessons with the renowned Italian composer Vincenzo Carpenini, with whom she’s been corresponding. But not only is Carpenini not expecting her, he doesn’t even remember her! His friend, theater owner Oliver Merrick, does, though. And one look into her tantalizing green eyes has him cursing his impulsive letter-writing, which brought her across the continent. Yet before Merrick can apologize, Carpenini has ordered her away.

Little does either man know that they will soon be embroiled in a wager that will require the beautiful Miss Forrester’s help—or that there’ll be far more at stake in this gamble than money…

What’s next in Kate’s writing world?

I am very excited about my next trilogy, the first of which will be out in 2014.  I’m also working on a comic book with Javier Grill-Marxuach (The Middleman) and artist Kel McDonald, as well as the Welcome to Sanditon web series.  Other than that, I have a couple of pet projects in the pipeline, that I hope to make see the light of day.

Wow!  Your plate is full with some very cool stuff, Kate!  Thanks for taking the time to be with us.  Readers, Kate is graciously giving away a copy today of If I Fall.  Since her latest book involves music and composers, let’s talk about that.  What’s your favorite music to listen to?  One person who comments will win a copy of If I Fall.

And don’t forget to check Kate’s website for more info on Let It Be Me, her new book.