Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Alyson McLayne | Title Challenge: HIGHLAND THIEF
Author Guest / September 8, 2021

Thanks to Fresh Fiction for having me today and for providing me with this interesting challenge: use the letters in my title to describe HIGHLAND THIEF, book five in The Sons of Gregor MacLeod series. Okay, here goes… H is for Hot Highlanders—five of them, to be exact! These strong Highland lairds and foster brothers are left reeling when they meet the sassy women who finally bring them to their knees! I is for Injustice. The lairds fight injustice to bring peace to the Highlands. G is for Gregor MacLeod. Twenty years ago, Gregor defeated his enemies and fostered their sons—Darach, Lachlan Callum, Gavin, and Kerr—bonding them to him and to each other, thereby honoring his wife’s dying wish: to bring peace to the Highlands. H is for History. Set in 1453, Highland Thief brings medieval Scotland to life. L is for Laird Kerr MacAlister. Kerr is the hero of Highland Thief, and he intends to marry Isobel MacKinnon…even if his bride-to-be doesn’t intend to marry him. A is for Annoyed, which is how Kerr makes Isobel feel most of the time. Of course, it doesn’t help that Kerr deliberately riles her…and she deliberately riles him right back. N is for Never…

Jaymee Jacobs | Author-Reader Match: CHASING DOWN THE DREAM + GIVEAWAY!
Author Guest / September 8, 2021

Instead of trying to find your perfect match in a dating app, we bring you the “Author-Reader Match” where we introduce you to authors you may fall in love with. It’s our great pleasure to present Jaymee Jacobs! Writes: Hockey romance! I have a few standalones, but most of my books are in the Dallas Comets series. My stories are about millennials and dating in the age of technology. About: I’m just a hockey fan for looking for her own happily ever after. By day, I work in the corporate world, and by night, I scribble down whatever the voices in my head tell me to. I’ve got two feline roommates who help to make life interesting. Our favorite pastimes include reading, writing, and binge true-crime documentaries. What I’m Looking For In My Ideal Reader Match: My ideal readers are okay with: an HFN (happy for now) imperfect characters who are trying their hardest to live their best lives not your typical romance Must love: strong and capable heroines sensitive and sexy heroes a little splash of sports thrown in What To Expect If Compatible: the unexpected! — COMMENT TO WIN: A signed paperback copy of Chasing Down the Dream (open internationally). — CHASING…

Jane Kirkpatrick | How Music Heals
Author Guest / September 8, 2021

The poet Maya Angelou once wrote that as a child “Music was my refuge. I climbed inside the space between the notes and curled my back to loneliness.” She was in tune with musician Natalie Curtis of The Healing of Natalie Curtis (Revell). Though not a child when she had a mental collapse before her New York Philharmonic debut in 1897, nevertheless she sought her healing in the discovery of the music of the Indigenous people of America’s Southwest. Her healing reflects what a century later psychologists at Baylor University discovered. They worked with children who had experienced trauma of various kinds: loss of home, death of a parent, abuse. What researchers found is that traditional counseling like I was trained to do as a Clinical Social Worker, was not as effective as movement (dance, woodworking), art (painting,  photography); story — reading and writing them;  and yes, music. These sensory experiences bypass the critical side and reach the amygdala oblongata, the part of the brain associated with emotion that does not shut down when the rest of a body might go into survival mode, which is where trauma sends us. I had my own experience with musical healing. When I…