October 1, 2014

Shadows of the Past - Teaser I

Wild Child Publishing

  In three different posts I will give you a teaser from my novel Shadows of the Past, that is the Prologue. Here is the first part. Enjoy!

England,  October1480

In the quiet solitude of a small, remote convent,

Only prayers seem alive

On the lips of holy sisters.

Candles flicker in their hands

Like lost souls in search of light,

And the yellowish, faint glimmer

Makes a halo round their whispers.

                                   * * *

The peal of the church bells from the abbey tower startled Genevieve. The sound added to her mounting anxiety.

The massive abbey loomed over the stone paved path.  All the nuns were at evening mass.  With a bit of luck her disappearance would go unnoticed for a few more hours. The Abbess would assume she was cleaning the toilets as ordered.

Fear skittered through Genevieve when she turned away from the abbey towards the path leading to town. Nothing stirred.  She hesitated.  Evil emanated from the forest surrounding the abbey. With a shiver, she leaned against the solid oak gates that flanked the abbey's main path. They had hidden her from detection for the past couple of hours, but how much longer would she be safe?

The mountain shadows grew thicker and closer.

She moved her weight from one leg to the other. They ached from so much standing, but she lacked the strength to return to the gardener's cottage and wait for Andrew's arrival as planned. Genevieve closed her tired eyes. The image of old Ryan, slumped dead in his chair in his cubicle, caught life in her mind and made her whole body ripple with fear.

She'd rather wait for Andrew here, outside.

Had he forgotten his promise? What if something terrible befell him during the last three days, or he had changed his mind? Why should he risk all for an ordinary nun?

Had his folks talked him into giving her up, made him see reason? Helping her out of her predicament meant a huge risk for him -- losing his family, his friends and his position among his peers. His words echoed in her mind. "I will risk everything for you, even life, if necessary."

A gust of wind swirled the dust on the path and dried the beads of sweat covering her temple. She shivered and pressed her cool hands to her cheeks. Had she misunderstood Andrew? No. She remembered vividly what he'd told her when they talked in Ryan's cottage. Three days. The evening of the third day, she should wait at Ryan's.

Her gaze strayed again to the impassive building of the abbey, her home for such a long time. She blamed the increasing wind for the sudden trail of dampness on her face, for the unmistakable tears blurring her vision. She blinked several times to clear her view. This was no time for tears.

Genevieve's brow wrinkled, and her breath caught in her throat.  Sister Francesca and Sister Benedicta smiled and waved at her from the abbey's entrance.

She shook her head and closed her eyes. Impossible. Both were dead. Genevieve wiped her tears and gazed at the abbey again. The image of the two Sisters, so dear to her, faded out.

Genevieve dared another peek along the path from the town.

Not a sound. Not a shadow.

Hopefully, Andrew hadn’t decided to follow the direct route through the forest. Danger lurked there. He should know all the dark legends people told about the cursed forest.

"Dear God, protect Andrew from the evil forest," she prayed; Andrew's face came to her as she’d last seen it three days before.

His kind loving eyes. His soft encouraging words. His tender touch.

She recalled the turmoil of emotions she’d experienced when she first met Andrew. Everything made sense now, in the light of the latest events. The warm waves coming from him and engulfing her, searing her body and soul, and the anxiety following those waves. It had been love at first sight. A feeling neither of them wanted to admit to until recently.

Love. Love and sin.

The monotonous muffled sound of hoof beats came up the path. Her gaze snapped to the dusty path. Nightfall descended with shadows, and she trembled with apprehension. What if the rider wasn't Andrew but someone summoned by the Abbess to dispose of Ryan's lifeless body and grab her too?

An eerie sensation of danger whispered in her ears, invaded her, and sent shivers down her spine. She should find shelter behind the bush of musk rose, and later, if everything proved safe, start down the path to town. She might meet Andrew along the road. If not. . .

She could no longer remain here. Once mass was over any of the other nuns might discover her and bring the information to the hateful Abbess. 

An overwhelming sense of relief washed over Genevieve when she saw that Andrew was the approaching rider. He came to the abbey riding his black mare and holding the reins of a bay for her. His eyebrows peaked with surprise; he inclined his head to his shoulder. The abbey's wide open gates with nobody in sight must have surprised him.

Genevieve understood his amazement. She'd told him three days ago about the Abbess's order to Ryan. Sister Clementa had asked the old gardener to keep the gates locked, even during the day.

Ryan said Clementa feared that one of the few nuns who disagreed with her behavior might leave the abbey unnoticed, at night. The Abbess didn't want any of them to take denouncing messages to the town's Archbishop.

No sooner had Andrew swung off his horse and tied the reins of both horses to a tree than Genevieve, managing to break out of her petrified state, hurried from behind the gates.

A warm smile brightened his face upon seeing her.  His smile melted away. Something about her expression must have warned him all wasn't well. His gaze, worried and questioning, lingered on her face.

"What's wrong, my darling? Have you changed your mind? Why are you here by the gate? I thought I’d find you in the old man's house? Someone could have seen you and alerted the Abbess," he said.

He pulled an ivory wood anemone from his saddlebag and gave it to Genevieve. "I picked this along the way. It looks like you: pretty and delicate.”

She heaved a sigh and accepted the flower. "Oh, Andrew, how sweet of you." She managed a smile.

"Come, we should leave at once," she said and glanced nervously over her shoulder. "Something terrible happened after you left for town. I think the Abbess found out about us. Our meeting in Uncle Ryan's cabin is no longer a secret. We have been overheard. For all I know someone spies on us even as we speak. I think the Abbess, or one of her 'friends,' is hovering somewhere nearby and listening to every word."

Andrew pulled her into his arms and tightened her in his embrace. "Calm down, please. Tell me what’s wrong."

"No, please, let's leave. There's danger all around us. I know what I'm saying."

“Then you can tell me what happened along the way." Andrew took hold of her hand as if trying to instill courage and confidence in her. He untied the reins of the horse he'd brought for her.  Placing a tender kiss on her forehead, he helped Genevieve up and then swung himself into the saddle. He turned his head as if to hide the worried frown across his face. "A scorned woman is worse than an unleashed hurricane," he said. Then he addressed Genevieve, "We'll follow the most direct route through the forest."

Genevieve flinched.

The forest. The very cursed forest. The main reason for the tragedy in her family.
To Be Continued 
Buy link Wild Child Publishing

September 30, 2014

Guest Promo (LVIII) #Romancing September Day 30

Welcome to Day 30, the last day of Romancing September Across The World Tour. Our final guest is Jane Linfoot. Catch up with more from Jane in a few hours with the second part of our tour when Stephanie chats to her.
High Heels and Bicycle Wheels
Where is your home town?
I live in Matlock Bath, which is a Georgian Spa Resort, set in the gorge of the River Derwent, in Derbyshire, England
How long have you been writing romance?
The romance writing bug grabbed me in the autumn of 2010.
What is your favourite sub-genre of romance?
So far I’ve written contemporary romance/romcom/chicklit, with feisty twenty-something heroines.
What does Bryony do for a living?
Bryony works for a TV production company. She loves to work on programmes which deal with anything pretty, especially those involving homes and style, but she goes where the work is. High Heels & Bicycle Wheels sees her working on a sports programme, which is hard when she’s the least sporty woman on the planet.
Where can readers find out more about you?
Jane Linfoot
My Author links are:
Author Page Facebook (It would be great if people liked my page!): https://www.facebook.com/JaneLinfoot2
Twitter: https://twitter.com/janelinfoot @janelinfoot
Website: http://www.janelinfoot.co.uk
Read the original post on Rosie's blog.

September 29, 2014

Guest Promo (LVII) #Romancing September Day 29

Welcome to Day 29 of Romancing September Across The World Tour. Our guest today is Rae Rivers. Catch up with more from Rae in a few hours with the second part of our tour when Stephanie chats to her.
Declan Cover
Where is your home town?
I live in Cape Town, South Africa.
How long have you been writing romance?
I started writing at the age of 12 years old and then more full time about a year ago when I signed my Keepers series with HarperCollins.
What is your favourite sub-genre of romance?
I usually enjoy stories that are well paced, spicy, filled with humour and romance. Contemporary romance, paranormal romance and romantic suspense are always a favourite..
Where can readers find out more about you?
Rae Rivers

My blog:             www.raerivers.com
Twitter- @raerivers1
Read the entire pot on Rosie's blog.

September 28, 2014

Guest Promo (LVI) #Romancing September Day 28

Welcome to Day 28 of Romancing September Across The World Tour. Today our guest is Liz Everly. Catch up with more from Liz in a few hours with the second part of our tour when Stephanie chats to her.
Like Honey (eBook)
Where is your home town?
My hometown is Aliquippa, Pa., just outside of Pittsburgh.
How long have you been writing romance?
About five years.
What is your favourite sub-genre of romance?
It’s a toss up between erotic romance and historical.
What originally brought Jennifer to Scotland?
Jennifer had a mad love affair with a man who inherited the farm. They married and moved to Scotland.
Where can readers find out more about you?
Liz Everly
Amazon Author Page
Twitter @Liz Everly1
The entire post is on Rosie's blog.

September 27, 2014

Guest Promo (LV) #Romancing September Day 27

Welcome to Day 27 of Romancing September Across The World Tour. Today our guest is Romy Sommer. Catch up with more from Romy in a few hours with the second part of our tour when Stephanie chats to her.
To catch a star new
Where is your home town?
I live in sunny Johannesburg, South Africa where the weather is warm, the lifestyle is outdoorsy and the people are always on the go.
How long have you been writing romance?
I started writing about eight years ago, not planning to write romance (which I’d hardly read before that point!) until another writer friend told me I “had a voice for romance”. I bought a pile of romance novels from a second hand bookshop, and so began my love affair with romance.
What is your favourite sub-genre of romance?
I enjoy historicals set in unusual periods, and YA or paranormal with some romantic elements, but my favourite sub-genre is definitely contemporary romance. Flirty, modern, relatable stories.
How do Christian and Teresa meet?
The meeting between Christian and Teresa was inspired by a scene from Singin’ in the Rain. I showed the movie to my daughters and as I was watching I thought “that could so happen today!” and so I have Christian running away from his too-adoring fans and jumping into Teresa’s car to escape. She assumes he’s trying to hijack her – as I probably would if a complete stranger jumped into my moving car!
Where can readers find out more about you?
Romy 2014
I have a blog, and am on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter. I’m also on Goodreads but I have to admit I don’t hang out there much!
Website/Blog: www.romysommer.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Romy-Sommer/581103771909039?fref=ts
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/romysommer/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/romy_s
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6603454.Romy_Sommer 
Read the original post on Rosie's blog.

September 26, 2014

Guest Promo (LIV) #Romancing September Day 26

Welcome to Day 26 of Romancing September Across The World Tour. Today our guest is Dani-Lyn Alexander. Catch up with more from Dani-Lyn in a few hours with the second part of our tour when Stephanie chats to her.
Anonymous Cover
Where is your home town?
East Moriches, New York, a small town on the south shore of eastern Long Island.
How long have you been writing romance?
I sat down to write my first book three years ago.
What is your favourite sub-genre of romance?
I love both paranormal and romantic suspense.
Why is Ali heart-broken?
She is still hung up on her soon-to-be ex-husband.
What is Anonymous?
Anonymous is a new dating website where you can retain complete anonymity while searching for your soul-mate.
What has caused the death threats?
Ahh…that is part of the suspense!
Where can readers find out more about you?
Dani-Lyn Alexander
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/danilynalexander
Website: http://www.danilynalexander.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/DaniLynAlexande
Buy Links:
Or Amazon.co.uk
Read the entire post on Rosie's blog.

September 25, 2014

Guest Promo (LIII) #Romancing September Day 25

Romance September 2014 cover (1)
Welcome to Day 25 of Romancing September Across The World Tour. Today our guest is Michelle Betham. Catch up with more from Michelle in a few hours with the second part of our tour when Stephanie chats to her.
Striker Cover

1)      Where is your home town?
I was born in Wallsend, north east England. I’m a born and bred Geordie girl!
2)      How long have you been writing romance?
I’ve been a romance author for over five years now, but I started writing romance long before that! I just didn’t have the confidence to start writing seriously until I hit forty!
3)      What is your favourite sub-genre of romance?
I think that would have to be contemporary romance. That’s what I write, and it’s what I’ve always loved to read.
Michelle Betham
10)   Where can readers find out more about you?
They can find out more about me over on my blog, and they can also follow me on Twitter and Facebook. I’m on there a lot!
Blog – http://michellebethamwriter.blogspot.co.uk/
Read the original post on Rosie's blog.