Tag Archives: Reporter

IN THE HEAT OF THE TROPICS BY CHRISTINA ELLIOTT W/INTERVIEW

Welcome to my stop for IN THE HEAT OF THE TROPICS.  Christina Elliott will be awarding a $15 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. You can follow the tour here:  http://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2017/11/vbt-in-heat-of-tropics-by-christina.html

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GENRE: Romantic suspense

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BLURB:

Amid a sweltering Miami summer, a serial killer is haunting the city. Reporter Ingrid Sorenson is assigned the story and her primary source is brusque detective Rick Gonzalez. The pair clash, but sparks of passion ignite. They risk their jobs to give in to their desire, but mistrust of each other’s career motives wedges them apart. Then Ingrid gets a tip that leads her into the killer’s lair. She and Rick must choose between saving themselves or rescuing their love.

Excerpt:

The sky darkened again as if a dimmer switch had been thrown. Rick flicked on the headlights. “I don’t think we’re going to beat the rain,” he said. “Do you want to turn back?”

Worry crossed her face. “No way. I’ve got a deadline to meet,” she said. “I’m not afraid of getting wet.”

He gave her an assessing glance as they pulled up to a stop light. She was plucky, he had to give her that. And smart. The light changed and he turned his attention to the road. He had to keep his guard up. She was a reporter, first and foremost. He had to remember that.

“Have you found witnesses who might’ve seen a suspect?” she asked.

“I can’t discuss specifics of the investigation. The killer chose his times and locations very carefully, which suggests a lot of pre-meditation. These weren’t spontaneous homicides. He went to different areas known for prostitution pickups each time because johns would be scared to go to the place where one had just been murdered and the hookers would be on the alert, but they were all in this general North Miami area. He staked out lonely streets to direct the customer to drive to commit the sexual act and likely had his vehicle parked nearby to make a fast escape.”

Ingrid was avidly taking notes. He paused to wait for her to catch up, and wondered if he was saying too much. As long as he focused on details about the killer that someone would recognize, he couldn’t get in trouble.

By the time he pulled up to the scene of the third killing a mile away, fat plops of rain were sporadically splattering the windshield. They soon increased to a steady drumbeat battering the roof.

“Crap,” Ingrid said.

“There’s not much to see, honestly, just another side street.”

“I still think I should see the actual spot,” Ingrid said.

He would have to end up with a super-thorough reporter. “I have an umbrella here somewhere,” he muttered, foraging under the seat.

Holding the umbrella, he jogged to the passenger side and opened the door. Necessarily brushing shoulders to fit side-by-side under the small shelter, they walked down the street to an alcove of an abandoned building.

“Victim three was found parked outside this doorway, Saul Martinez,” Rick said.

The sky cracked as if it were splitting apart, unleashing a torrent of water.

“I love these midsummer thunderstorms in Miami, don’t you?” Ingrid said.

Lightning illuminated her face with a bright halo.  Her cheeks shone where the rain had caught them, her forehead framed with tendrils of damp hair. Drops glistened on her eyelashes like tiny tears. He felt himself gliding toward her.

She blinked and the raindrops fell from her lashes. He halted himself.

“You’re getting wet. Let’s head to victim four,” he said brusquely. He turned toward the car without waiting for an answer.

The crime scene was a side street ten blocks west. This time they didn’t get out of the car. Rick pulled up and reconstructed the scene, restraining his urge to lean over her, just to breathe in her slightly sweet powdery scent, as he pointed from the window.

By the time they pulled back into the station parking lot, the rain had tapered to a dancing sprinkle and fingers of sunlight poked through the clouds, sending an eerie, hazy wash over the atmosphere.

He parked. Ingrid handed him her business card. “If you think of anything else, call me. My cell’s on there, too.”

Rick tucked it in a pocket. “So, what are you going to write?”

“What you told me, plus I’ll call some serial-killer psychology experts.”

“Just don’t get me in trouble again.”

Ingrid gave him a hard look. He’d meant it as a joke, but it hadn’t come out lightheartedly. She’d taken it as a rebuke. Damn.

“Thanks very much for your time, Detective.” Her tone was frosty. “If I have any other questions, I’ll call Major Montoya.”

The slam of the door buffeted the vehicle.

Interview with Christina Elliott

Where do you get your book ideas?

I was a newspaper reporter for many years so that’s definitely been a source for my fiction writing. That’s why Ingrid in In the Heat of the Tropics is a reporter! Among many other topics, I covered crime, cops, courts so I know that arena, although I still have to do research to get grounded in the details. However, but my background certainly gave me a good headstart. I’m definitely interested in the dark side of human nature, but I also love a good romance so romantic suspense seems to be a good combination for me.
Do you write outline to start or just start writing?

I try and outline as much as I can because I know from experience that if I just start writing, I tend to veer into a corner and get stuck there. I end up wasting a lot of time and writing energy. So it’s really helpful to know where I’m going. Even with an outline, I still find myself veering off track! It’s good to be flexible but also know where you want the story to end up.
How long does it normally take to write the book before edits?

Too long! It can take a couple years. Romance novels have the distinct advantage of being shorter so they take less time than say a detective or literary novel. I wish I could speed up my process, but other pesky little things get in the way, like writing so I can eat! Plus, I always like to leave a manuscript sit for a bit then come back to it with a fresh eye to see what needs fixing. I generally write too much, often jettisoning at least a book’s worth of writing to get to the story I want to tell. I hope to find another way someday!
Are you an indie author or mainstream author?

I’m a mainstream author. I’m published by a small press called Melange Books, which has various imprints including romance, YA and mystery/thriller. I like having a publisher behind me. They have a great cover artist and are very picky about copy editing, which is good, as typos and spelling/grammar mistakes really take away a book’s credibility, though they slip in.
How did you get started, can you give people wanting to write an idea how to get started?

I started writing as a child. That’s all I ever wanted to be so I wrote stories as a kid, then in high school and so on. If you take up writing later in life, I suggest taking courses to get going. Start with short stories before tackling a novel. Novels are unbelievably complex and unwieldy beasts so short stories are a good launching pad. There are also tons of online literary reviews you can submit to and thus build up a nice portfolio, as well as your confidence.

 

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Christina Elliott is a former Miami newspaper reporter and editor. She now writes spicy romantic suspense novels from Los Angeles, where she’s glad to report there are far fewer bad-hair days but sadly far less Cuban coffee. She is a member of the Romance Writers of America.

 

 

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Release Day: DEADLINE By Jessica James

Deadline.2

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Book Title: Deadline
Author: Jessica James
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Release Date: April 9, 2016
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions

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book blurb

He’s a relentless homicide detective. She’s an uncompromising journalist.
Neither desires to work together—but they’ll never uncover the truth alone.

Landing a front page headline isn’t why reporter Caitlin Sparks is investigating a string of suspicious deaths connected to the U.S. State Department. She has a personal stake in finding the killer.

Detective Blake Madison has a connection to the murders too, and will risk anything to uncover the truth. But a journalist is the last person he’d rely on to help him solve a crime—especially one whose trail of evidence leads back to him.

Joining forces becomes essential as the body count continues to grow. Someone powerful doesn’t want the truth to come out—and will stop at nothing to make sure no one talks.

On the run with nowhere to turn, the couple devises a plan to expose the killer. The risk is great and the chance of success small, but the ultimate outcome is something neither one of them envisioned.

excerptCaitlin stood in the dining room and surveyed the large, ornately carved table and twelve matching chairs. A fire glowed in a large-mouthed fireplace that boasted a beautiful cherry-colored mantel.Gracing the walls on the other three sides were foxhunting paintings—typical of dining rooms in this part of Virginia.

“Here you go.” The detective set the mug down on the table and took a seat. His sleeves were rolled up now and the tie had disappeared completely. The way his dark hair and complexion stood out against the crisp, white shirt he wore made him look a little more amiable and pleasant than the last time they’d met. But when he leaned forward with his arms on the table, Caitlin could see why he had such a reputation as a menacing interrogator. The look in his eyes turned intense and commanding—the kind of look that both drew her in and made her want to run away. Fast.

“I don’t usually do this.”

“What’s that?”

“Talk to reporters.” He exaggerated the word to make clear it was a profession extremely distasteful to him.

Caitlin refused to be intimidated or swayed. “Thanks for clearing that up.”

“You’re welcome,” he said, matching her sarcasm with some of his own. “And just to be clear, I’m no longer on the case so I don’t have anything to give you.”

“Excuse me?” Caitlin’s tone revealed her confusion and surprise.

“I told you I’m off the case.” He appeared surprised that she was surprised.

“Yes, and I’m off the story. But I thought we were sharing.”

“Minor correction. You’re sharing.”

Caitlin blinked. And blinked again. She thought he must be joking, but the expression on his face did not suggest that intent. “If you’re no longer actively working the case, why am I sharing with you?”

He lifted his mug and took a drink of coffee as he pondered the question.

“I don’t like what I’m being told. I want to see if you have anything to substantiate my gut feeling.”

Caitlin stood her ground. “In my world, sharing implies that we both give a little.” She closed the file and pushed out her chair. “Thanks for the coffee.”

“Hold on.” He sat back in his chair, crossed his arms, and stared at her a moment.

Caitlin hated the way he was able to combine unnerving intensity with disinterested detachment. She wondered if it was a natural habit of his or if he had been trained by the military to remain remote and aloof even in the most distressing situations. His body language revealed nothing, and his facial expression, as usual, was that of a stone. She didn’t like being around people she couldn’t read.

“So you came all the way out here, and now you want to negotiate?”

Caitlin was stunned, both by his self-assurance and his assertion.

“Negotiate? I didn’t realize I was going to have to negotiate. I’m pretty sure the word you used in your email was share.”

“Okay, maybe negotiate is the wrong word. How about co-op- erate?”

He drew the word out, pronouncing each syllable.

Caitlin couldn’t believe what she was hearing. “So you lured me out here on the pretext of sharing, and then have the gall to think you can bully me into providing information with nothing in return?” Shestood. “You can call it negotiation or cooperation or even collaboration for all I care, but you want to know what I call it?”
He didn’t answer, but she thought she saw a hint of amusement in his eyes, which infuriated her even more. She was too angry to think of a word to call it, so she pushed in her chair and turned to leave.

“Hold on.” His commanding voice stopped her in mid-stride. It took everything within her to turn around, but what she saw when she did surprised her.

Madison was fingering through a stack of folders in front of him, intent it seemed on locating one in particular. “Have you seen the autopsy report?” His voice was casual, as if the last few minutes had never transpired.

“Of course not.”

He lifted his gaze for just a second at the tone of her voice, and then went back to searching through the manila folders. Finding the one he wanted, he pushed it over to where she had been sitting, and then picked up his coffee mug. “Take a look.”

Caitlin stared at the file and then back at his stone-cold face. “From the Hillside murders?”
He gave a single nod of affirmation, but he didn’t look happy about it.

teasersDeadline by Jessica James
Deadline by Jessica James 1
DEADLINE
 

meet the author

Jessica James is an award-winning author of military fiction and non-fiction ranging from the Revolutionary War to modern day. She is the only two-time winner of the John Esten Cooke Award for Southern Fiction, and was featured in the book 50 Authors You Should Be Reading, published in 2010.
Her novels have been used in schools to teach visualization techniques and are available in more than one hundred libraries including Harvard and the U.S. Naval Academy.
James stays active working part-time as a stagehand where she assists with shows ranging from country bands and stage plays, to operas, symphonies and ballets. She resides in Gettysburg, Pa., and has a passion for old dwellings and first edition books.

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AMAZON US:  Deadline: Political Suspense Thriller: A Political Supense Thriller Novel, Espionage Conspiracy with Navy SEALs

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Release Day: CROSSING DANGER by Colleen Helme

Mystery

Date Published: April 27, 2015

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Shelby Nichols isn’t your average soccer-mom turned private investigator. She’s more on the quirky side with a little wild thrown in. That’s because a near-fatal gunshot wound to the head left her with the ability to read minds. This lands her in all kinds of trouble, and this time is no exception. Helping a reporter, Billie Jo, get the low-down on a case is just the tip of the iceberg. When her best friend’s niece goes missing, Shelby is pulled into a conspiracy that involves the police and the leader of a violent drug ring. Add to that a stranger in town with ties to the mob-boss she works for, along with a known assassin out to kill him, and Shelby is crossing danger at every turn. Will she find the answers in time? Or will this be her last adventure?



EXCERPT

I stood inside the small women’s locker room dressed in white drawstring pants that ended several inches above my ankles, and a robe-like top that crisscrossed to close in front. Luckily, I wore a black tank top underneath, since there wasn’t anything besides a white belt to hold it together.

I tied the belt in a knot and let out a breath, hoping I’d done it right. The white training uniform was a bit stiff, and worse, felt like a poufy marshmallow around me. I let out a disgusted huff, knowing that I looked like the womanly version of the Pillsbury dough-boy.

Billie Jo waited just outside the door, but it was hard to step out there dressed like this. Did I really need to do this? Especially since I’d know what everyone was thinking about me? Reading minds often came in handy, but not in situations like this.

Of course, the fact that a serial killer had recently taken me hostage and nearly killed me certainly helped. It was time to learn some self-defense, so nothing like that could ever happen to me again.

So what if I looked silly, and that with my ‘superpower’ of reading minds I’d know what everyone thought of me. I could take it. Besides, I had to start somewhere, right?

I took a calming breath and opened the door.

Billie smiled encouragingly before glancing down at the way I’d tied my belt. Her brows drew sharply together, and she was thinking it looked like a disaster. No way did she want me out on the mat looking like that. “Here…let me help you with that. Tie it this way…” She demonstrated how to do it, then pulled it tight. “Okay. Now you’re good to go.”

“Um…thanks,” I said.

She didn’t miss the embarrassed flush creeping up my neck and was thinking I should just suck it up and be grateful she was there to keep me from looking like a dork. With an indulgent smile that contradicted her thoughts, she turned and led the way to the mat.

Swallowing my pride, I followed behind, noting that her black skirt-like pants with the waist-high belt looked ten times better than my outfit. Compared to her, I looked like I was still in my underwear and had forgotten to put my pants on.

A vision of getting out there and everyone laughing at me crossed my mind but, given how Billie made sure my belt was right, I didn’t think she’d let me embarrass her like that. Still, once we got to the mat, I let out a relieved breath to find I wasn’t the only one wearing white training pants.

Billie did a quick bow before stepping onto the mat, so I bowed as well. I followed her to stand in a line before the teacher, or Sensei, as everyone called him. He wore the same black pants as Billie but, on him, they seemed more dignified and masterful. He was also a big, tall and brawny kind of guy. With his long, gray-black hair pulled back into a ponytail, he intimidated the crap out of me.

He caught my gaze and nodded a cool greeting while I tried to hide my jittering nerves. After he introduced me to the rest of the class, we began with a few stretches and warm-ups. Then he taught us that the most important part of Aikido was learning how to fall safely and then roll around to get back up.

Besides Billie, there was only one other woman in the class. Her name was Melissa, and she was a second-degree black belt like Billie. With the two of them paying special attention to me, I began to relax and actually started to enjoy myself. Even the rolling-around part didn’t seem so bad. They showed me some basic techniques, and my confidence grew.

Near the end of class, Sensei asked if I had any questions, so I blurted out the one thing I’d been thinking about all night. “Yeah. I was just wondering…if someone was to get me in a choke hold with his elbow around my neck and started dragging me backwards, would I be able to get away?”

His gaze caught mine, and his eyes narrowed. He was thinking that, from the fear in my eyes and the tone of my voice, it probably wasn’t a rhetorical question. No. I had the look of someone who’d been there, and a spike of anger rushed over him. He’d seen it more times than he liked, and it always made him furious.

“Yes you can. I’ll show you how.” He turned his gaze to Melissa and asked her to help him demonstrate the technique. Since she was about my size, and he was huge, I was interested to see how she could possibly take him on and come out on top.

He stood behind her and clamped his elbow around her neck beneath her chin. “The first thing you do is tuck your chin down so they can’t choke you.” She did this, and Sensei proceeded to explain how she needed to pull down on his elbow and step back, then grab his wrist and forcefully push outward with his elbow still bent. “At this point, you will break his arm.”

Whoa! That sounded pretty awesome, and I couldn’t help smiling with wicked delight. He demonstrated the technique a few more times, adding different variations to the attack, and then asked me to practice with him. Him! The biggest guy in the class!

I nervously licked my lips and, as he put his arm around my neck, that feeling of helplessness washed over me. But he patiently talked me through the moves and, after breaking his hold a few times, confidence replaced my fear. I even forced him to the mat once. Who would have thought? By the end of class, I was pumped. This was the right place for me, and I could hardly wait to come back and learn more.

About the Author

As the author of the Shelby Nichols Adventure Series, Colleen is often asked if Shelby Nichols is her alter-ego. “Definitely,” she says. “Shelby is the epitome of everything I wish I dared to be.” Known for her laugh since she was a kid, Colleen has always tried to find the humor in every situation and continues to enjoy writing about Shelby’s adventures. “I love getting Shelby into trouble…I just don’t always know how to get her out of it!” Colleen lives in the Rocky Mountains with her family. Besides writing, she loves a good book, biking, hiking, and playing board and card games with family and friends. She loves to connect with readers and admits that fans of the series keep her writing.

Author Links
Twitter: @ColleenHelme
Purchase Links
Giveaway
$25 Amazon Gift Card
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Review: The Seeker: Five Book Box Set by Ditter Kellen

A serial killer is on the hunt …

Ember Wells knows the meaning of terror. A reporter by day, her nights are spent hiding from a serial killer known as The Seeker. He’s stalked her for a year, terrorizing her through the lens of a camera. 
Held prisoner by paranoia, fear becomes a lonely companion…until she meets Angelo Dimitrov, a dark, mysterious stranger who sets her world on fire.Angelo Dimitrov is not what he seems. Sexy as sin and shrouded in secrets, he appears out of nowhere and moves in next door. Should Ember run from this stranger with the moss green eyes or give in to her heart and be burned alive?

REVIEW:

If you love suspense, vampires, serial killer mysteries and hot sex all rolled into one you will love this 5 book series.  The complete love story of Ember and Angel are in this series.  I loved the characters, Ember is being stalked by a serial killer but she refuses to curl up and hide as she is afraid he will target her friends and family. She is a strong character and her new neighbor Angelo sounds super hot, and the sex was explosive.  You won’t go wrong with this series.

 

The Seeker Box Set

 $2.99  PURCHASE ON AMAZON:  The Seeker: Five Book Box Set

Author Bio:

A former 911 dispatcher turned author, Ditter Kellen has been in love with romance for over twenty years. To say she’s addicted to reading is an understatement. Her ebook reader is an extension of her and holds many of her fantasies and secrets. It’s filled with dragons, shifters, vampires, ghosts and many more jaw-dropping characters who keep her entertained on a daily basis. Ditter’s love of paranormal and outrageous imagination have conspired together to bring her where she is today…sitting in front of her computer allowing them free rein. Writing is her passion, what she was born to do. I hope you will enjoy reading her stories as much as she loves spinning them. Ditter resides in Florida with her husband and many unique farm animals. She adores French fries and her phone is permanently attached to her ear.

Author Website: Ditter Kellen

Ember and Angel’s story is the first in the Seeker Series. Shon and Laura’s HEA will be coming soon, along with Vlad and many others.

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Review: Batter Up by Robyn Neeley

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She mixes more than flour and sugar into her cake batter, and he’s about to find out if a little bit of magic is to his taste…

Bakeshop owner Emma Stevens has a secret — a delicious, slightly unorthodox secret. Each Monday, she mixes up a premonition to share with the bachelors of Buttermilk Falls, and sets one lucky man on the path to true love.

When reporter Jason Levine finds himself mixed up in a Las Vegas bachelorette party, he hears the strangest rumour: the marriage is happening thanks to magic cake batter. Seriously sceptical, and sick of frauds, Jason journeys to the backwater town of Buttermilk Falls to expose the baker and release the townspeople from her evil clutches.

But when Jason meets Emma, tempers flare and sparks fly. Will Jason cling to his logic at the expense of a future, or will he let himself fall under Emma’s spell?

My Review: 

I received this book as an ARC for a honest review. I loved this book, it is set in a small town in New York called Buttermilk Falls.  I loved the small town atmosphere where everyone knew every else’s business.  This book was laugh out lot funny at times and with lots of romance between Emma and her “Summer Fling” Jason.  Jason came to town because he had heard of Emma’s batter up Monday Nights where the bachelors of Buttermilk Falls who are ready to settle down put their names in the lottery to get their names chosen for Emma to tell them their love match’s name.  When Emma stirs the cupcake batter the lucky man’s true loves name is revealed in the batter.  Jason wants to ride a story for his newspaper and expose her but he falls in love with her. Emma wants nothing to do with someone out to expose her bakery.  But will magic and true love find a way?  Great Read!

PURCHASE: Batter Up

Batter UpBatter Up by Robyn Neeley

My rating: 5 of 5 stars on Goodreads.

 

 

Robyn Neeley


Robyn Neeley is an East Coaster who loves to explore new places; watches way more reality TV than she cares to admit; can’t live without Dunkin Donuts coffee and has never met a cookie she didn’t like. If you have a must read romance suggestion or a fabulous cookie recipe, she wants to know. Find her on Facebook and Twitter while her website is under construction!

 

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