#FreebieFriday A Visit with Alexa Verde & RIVER OF DANGER

I am so happy to have with me today my buddy Alexa Verde who has a free read for us and some goodies! Leave a comment on this blog post for a chance to win an e-copy of Alexa’s debut book COLOR OF DANGER.

Here’s a little but about Alexa!

    A teacher and translator turned author of Christian romantic suspense, Alexa Verde loves writing more than she loves seafood and strawberry cheesecake, and that’s saying something. She has over 200 short stories, poems, and articles published in the five languages she speaks and has more diplomas on the wall than she knows what to do with. After traveling the world and living in both hemispheres, Alexa calls south Texas home. Please visit her online at www.alexaverde.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/alexaverdeauthor and on Twitter at @AlexaVerde3.

Teaser from RIVER OF DANGER

RiverofDangerCoverHer body went limp. River breathed fast and hard, as if she’d run a marathon in front of a train. Tears rolled down her cheeks.

If she didn’t manage to stop soon, she’d make it to the bridge. Losing control of her car there meant falling into dark, deep waters. River gripped the steering wheel even tighter. It vibrated and moved in her hands, like a snake struggling to get away. The night when she’d faced death once before flashed in her mind, a sharp blade pressed to her throat, the metallic scent of her own blood hanging in the air.

Aren’t you scared, River? Aren’t you very, very scared?

Wincing, she got rid of the soft voice in her head and the memories.

“Lord, please forgive me. Please help me,” she whispered.

Cold drops formed on her forehead and trickled down her face, but she couldn’t wipe them off, couldn’t release the wheel. She held on to it, though her palms were clammy with cold sweat as well.

She was not going to die today.

Determined, River eased on the brake. Somehow, someway, she managed to slide to the shoulder. The tires whispered against the gravel and then the grass when she brought the car to a complete stop.

For several seconds, she couldn’t move, see, or draw a single breath. Her mind was blank, as if unable to comprehend she was still alive.

“Thank you, Lord. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.”

Still trembling, River looked in the rearview mirror. Whoever had messed with her tire could be following her. But no cars had stopped so far.

She knew she should call for road service to replace her tire. Judging by the sign she’d passed not long ago, she was close to her sleepy hometown, Rios Azules, in south Texas. So it wouldn’t be long until somebody would come to her rescue. But her hands were shaking, and as soon as she fished out her cell phone from her purse, it slipped and fell to the floor.

River dropped her head on her hands and let herself dive into a quick oblivion.

A knock on the window brought her to reality. She jerked up. How could she let herself zone out that way? Somebody had obviously unscrewed her tire, most likely at the last gas station where she’d gone to get coffee and her favorite beef jerky. That person could be knocking at her window now!

River ducked and reached for her purse, where she carried a .38 caliber pistol, a habit ever since she’d been attacked. She gathered her willpower to stop her fingers from trembling.

“Are you all right? Can I help you?” inquired someone with a deep baritone laced with worry. “River?”

She tensed and relaxed at the same time. She’d recognize that voice from a million voices.

Jacob Forrester.

Alexa’s Books are available at:

COLOR OF DANGER: http://amzn.to/1V8sEtP
RIVER OF DANGER: http://amzn.to/1V8sz9w

Have a great weekend!

#ThrowbackThursday The Very First Book Signing & Thanks

It’s not possible to talk about reaching the ONE MILLION BOOKS SOLD mark (still can’t get over it) without talking about the very first one as well as some people who have been so very very instrumental in giving me the opportunity to write for you!

First of all, a big thank you to the fabulous Fern Michaels who took the time to read my first works and put me in touch with her editor. Her advice and support was invaluable in my deciding I might actually be able to write.

Another big thank you to the late Gwynne Foster who I sat with at one meeting and basically told me, “What are you waiting for! Just send it to them!” I did and got a call just a few weeks later from my very first editor, Diane Stockwell. It was such a pleasure working with her on the Encanto line and if it wasn’t for her support (and buying my very first book).

Things don’t always go smoothly in the publishing world and when Encanto disappeared, it took me a few years to sell another book. This time it was to the awesome Stacy Boyd who always brought out the best in my writing and who has been a wonderful advocate at Harlequin. Thank you, Stacy.

There have been many many other people and I don’t want them to feel left out, but I’ll share more thanks in the future (since I really really really want to milk this moment – LOL!).

To end today’s Throwback Thursday, here is a photo from my very first signing in Menlo Park Mall.
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#WriteWed One Million Books Sold!

I’ve been nearing a milestone for several months and I still have to tally some numbers, but even without them, I’ve hit a very special milestone: ONE MILLION BOOKS SOLD.

Wow. Now I know there are people who have hit that number and more. There are people who hit that number in a really fast time. I’ve kind of been like the tortoise and not the hare, but despite that, it’s reason to celebrate a milestone that many writers may never reach.

So, WOO HOO! I’m still in a little shock about it and deciding how to celebrate since it’s truly something to celebrate. I think we’ll have a giveaway for starters. Maybe even a little get together at a conference. I’d love to hear from you about how to share this very special moment with you!

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#TuesdayTip National Bagel Day

Oooh, bagels. Those crusty, chewy, tasty treats! I’ve been watching my carbs because I do see a difference in my body when I eat them, but today I made an exception since it’s NATIONAL BAGEL DAY! Happiness.

So how can you have bagels more often if you are trying to be healthier. This Tuesday I have some tips for you.

    1. See if there is a whole grain/multi grain option.
    2. Scoop out the center stuff and just leave the crusty goodness. You can eliminate close to half the calories (around 400 for a regular bagel) and you get the sense of eating more by doing this instead of just eating half a bagel.
    3. Choose a non-animal fat spread, like mashed avocados or a natural nut butter. Hint on the “natural” nut butters: Read the label. If you’re getting a natural peanut butter it should have just one ingredient: Peanuts. You’d be surprised by what some of the “natural” nut butters actually contain.
    4. Add an egg or other low-fat meat protein, like a lean prosciutto or Canadian ham.
    5. Use a low fat/non fat cream cheese.

Ever wonder how bagels are made? Click here to check out this cool movie about Brooklyn Bagels or watch it below!

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bagelday

#ManCandyMonday Jeff Francoer aka Frenchie

It’s that time of year when a young woman’s thoughts turn to . . . baseball. Pitchers and catchers report next week to start the Spring Training Season and I, for one, can’t wait for this year. I’m hoping my Mets will be able to repeat last year’s magic and make it to the World Series again.

Today’s choice is a former Met. I always liked him and he’s a funny guy. Got to see him up close at a batting practice and he seemed really nice. Jeff Francouer, aka Frenchie, has played for a number of teams during his career including the Braves, Phillies, Giants and Padres. He’s an outfielder with a good arm who often comes through with the clutch hit in the batter’s box. He’s also got a great smile!

JeffFrancouerAtlanta

#ThrowbackThursday Cowboy Time in San Antonio

I’d always wanted to go to San Antonio so when I heard that the RWA conference was going to be there, I had no doubt that I wanted to go! You can see some photos of my journeys throughout San Antonio by clicking here.

Since we were in Texas, a number of groups had cowboys for us to meet. Here’s a picture of my up close encounter with this cutie!
rwa2014Cowboy

This year’s conference is in San Diego and if you’ll be in the area, I look forward to seeing you there at the Literacy signing! Click here for more info on the RWA Conference and Book Signing.

#WriteWed Inspiration for Under the Boardwalk from the Summer Heat #Romance #Boxset

I love working on box sets with other authors. I have met so many talented and nice women that way! I’m very excited about the upcoming SUMMER HEAT contemporary romance set and my story – Under the Boardwalk.

As you might guess from the title, the story takes place along the beach. The Jersey Shore to be precise and to even be more precise, two of my favorite towns along the Jersey Shore: Ocean Grove and Asbury Park. I love including places I’ve been in stories because it adds so much to the feel of the locations and also, because I love sharing those places with you! I hope that one day you’ll be able to visit. For now, here are some photos of some of the places you might be seeing in Under the Boardwalk.