Thursday, March 26, 2015

Cover Reveal - Lies Come True

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TITLE – Lies Come True
SERIES – The Avery Hart Trilogy, Book One
AUTHOR – Emerald O'Brien
GENRE – New Adult Mystery
PUBLICATION DATE – April 17th 2015
LENGTH (Pages/# Words) - unformatted right now, but 65k words
PUBLISHER – Emerald O'Brien
COVER ARTIST – Najla Qamber Designs

Avery Hart narrowly escapes death after being attacked in the woods of Crown River.

Ten years later...
The body of a young woman is found along the path of a park in the same town. The killer is cunning and ruthless, but even the best killers make mistakes.

Fiona Wolfe, the second woman to be attacked, survives and reveals a potential link between the current killer and the attack on Avery Hart.

Noah Cotter, an ambitious new inspector, becomes drawn to the case when his curiosity combines with his attraction to Avery.

The dangerous search for truth appears to be muddied with each shocking secret brought to light, as Avery, Fiona, and Noah realize that when someone is deceived for too long, sometimes...

Lies Come True

Lies Come True - Book Cover

She turned back up the trail, and pushed herself to go forward. The next few strides hurt less than the first. She picked up her pace, and squinted into the last of the sunlight, as her heart pounded in her chest.

She took deep breaths as she pushed herself harder, confident that she was gaining ground, and when she reached a clearing by the lake, she looked back.

It was a man, or what looked like one, but his face was white. And red.

Music I listened to before I wrote Lies Come True (The Avery Hart Trilogy, Book One) and while I'm writing The Avery Hart Trilogy, Book Two:

Go- Meg Myers
Scared- The Tragically Hip
Got You Where I Want You (re-recorded)- The Flys
If I Didn't Know Better- Nashville Soundtrack
Breath of Life- Florence and the Machine
Shouldn't Have To- The Mark Inside
Bent- Matchbox 20
Make a Shadow- Meg Myers
Lie- Ryan Levine
Shadows- Lindsey Stirling
and the whole soundtrack to Gone Girl

Emerald O'Brien is a Canadian writer who grew up just East of Toronto, Ontario. She graduated from the program of Television Broadcasting and Communications Media at Mohawk College in Hamilton, Ontario. Emerald is the author of new adult mysteries Darkness Follows and it's sequel, Shadows Remain. Her upcoming release, Lies Come True (The Avery Hart Trilogy, Book One), is also a new adult mystery.

When she isn't reading or writing, Emerald can be found with her family and friends. Emerald loves to cook and entertain, and spends many nights watching movies with her husband and their two beagle pups.


3 Darkness Follows ebooks
2 Lies Come True ebooks
1 $5.00 Amazon Gift Card

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Monday, March 16, 2015

Special Guest Charity Parkerson

Hearts Strum - Banner

TITLE – Heart’s Strum
SERIES – Ugly Eternity – Book #3
AUTHOR – Charity Parkerson
GENRE – M/M Romance
LENGTH (Pages/# Words) – 30,000
PUBLISHER – Punk & Sissy Publications
COVER ARTIST – Charity Parkerson for Punk & Sissy Designs

Hearts Strum - Book Cover

For a moment, Jamie held the world, even though it wasn’t his to hold…
Jamie has spent his entire life playing the good twin. Now, he’s the one standing out after signing with Guillotine Records. Two years of being on his own in California hasn’t lessened his desire for the man who made it happen. Too bad that man belongs to one of Jamie’s oldest friends.

Fate is about to hand him an unexpected chance.
After losing everything, Hawke needs a break from reality. Too many lies and heartaches have left him with nothing except nightmares he can’t escape. Seeing Jamie again reminds him of a different time—one where Jamie made him feel a spark of something pure.

Can Jamie undo the years of damage caused by his so-called friend?
In the face of everything Maddox has done to Hawke, Jamie can’t let this chance pass him by. No friendship in the world is strong enough to overlook the pain Maddox has caused. Jamie can’t think of a thing he’d rather do than pick up the pieces of Hawke’s life, but will Hawke let him?

Sometimes the most beautiful relationships spring from the most broken places.
Hearts Strum - Teaser 2


perfect fit man from the back

Hawke hugged him. Jamie was too surprised to react right away. When he did, some sort of strange dumbassery rose to the surface. “Awww, you let me inside your bubble. I’m going to breathe up all the good air.”

Hawke snorted. “Shut up.” He tensed as if he meant to pull away. Jamie closed his arms around him, keeping him in place.

“I’m being serious.” He turned his head, burying his nose against Hawke’s neck, and inhaling loudly. “You’re going to suffocate.” A low laugh escaped Hawke, feeding Jamie’s ridiculousness. He didn’t try pulling away again. Jamie’s heart swelled. He pressed his mouth to Hawke’s throat, breathing heavily. “I’m breathing on you too. You’re going to end up with some dreaded disease.”

Hawke’s hands found his waist. “You’re definitely killing me.” Jamie didn’t miss the husky note to his voice. The pads of Hawke’s thumbs brushed his sides—skin on skin. Jamie’s body reacted the same as Hawke going down on him. He wouldn’t last long if the man ever willingly touched him in such a way. Jamie untangled himself before he could embarrass himself.

Hearts Strum - Author Photo

Charity Parkerson is an award winning and multi-published author with Ellora's Cave Publishing, Indie Publishing House LLC, and Punk & Sissy Publications. Born with no filter from her brain to her mouth, she decided to take this odd quirk and insert it in her characters.

*Winner of 2, 2014 Readers' Favorite Awards
*2014 Golden Ankh Nominee
*2013 Readers' Favorite Award Winner
*2013 Reviewers' Choice Award Winner
*2012 ARRA Finalist for Favorite Paranormal Romance
*Five-time winner of The Mistress of the Darkpath


$5.00 US Amazon gift card

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Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Welcome Tina Donahue

FreeingTheBeast72lg (2)


(Book One – Taming the Beast series)

Erotic Paranormal

by Tina Donahue

Please support my Thunderclap campaign:

Buy Links:

Available for pre-order February 8 - click here

Ready to read March 10



No more Mr. Nice Guy

Magic is Becca Salt’s business, but it ain’t happening in her bedroom. The half-witch proprietress of From Crud to Stud performs miracle makeovers for paranormal creatures. Once she’s done with them, they’re out the door hunting for hot babes, not hanging around for a too-curvy, plain Jane like her.

Her newest client is hot, hung, mouthwatering perfection. What could she possibly improve upon?

Eric Diletto. Descendant of Cupid, bred for courtship, courtesy, and all that other gentlemanly junk. What has it gotten him? Dumped time and again for bad boys. He needs Becca’s help for an entirely different reason—regression therapy to release his inner beast. Grrrr.

Two potions later, they’re crawling all over each other. Becca aches for a man who loves her as she is, not because he’s under the influence. But Eric isn’t as impaired as she thinks. And he intends to take Becca here, there, and everywhere—anything to convince her his desire isn’t just the potions talking.

Product Warnings

A witchdoctor’s nightmare. Contains potions with weird side effects, a sorceress with limited magical skills and a yearning heart, plus a minor god who wants to get down and dirty. Bad, bad boy!


He gaped at the claw marks on the walls, the padded table with extensions for arms and legs with leather restraints dangling from both areas. In other words, the props for an executioner’s wet dream.

Eric circled the table. “You’re going to strap me to this?”

Becca closed the door and locked it. She heard Constance and Heather move closer immediately, their shoes tapping the floor. “It’s for your protection…and mine. It’s in the contract.” She held it up to remind him. “Page fifty-two, right above where you initialed it.”

He seemed sorry he had. “How much of my beast are you going to pull out?”

“Only a little,” she promised. “If there’s any at all.”

“There is.” He appeared offended that she kept questioning it. “There has to be. I’m a guy, all right?”

Becca wasn’t about to argue with him. He’d worn a navy tee and battered jeans that didn’t hide one muscle on his gorgeous body. She sagged against the door, needing it for support. Even his feet were luscious, nice and big, his toes long, coming right to the edges of his leather sandals.

Given that this was a weekday, he must have taken off from work because he didn’t know what to expect.

Join the club. She murmured, “What do you do?”

He stopped fingering the wrist restraints. “Do?”

“At your job.”

“Oh. I’m a financial analyst. I make sure my extended family’s investments are sound. Were you thinking of investing?”

Before he whipped out his business card, Becca shook her head. “How aggressive do financial analysts get?”

“In their recommendations?”

“While they’re at work. Once I’ve pulled out some of your inner beast…that is, if there is any to pull—”

“Haven’t I already said there is? Don’t you worry. I don’t have to be a pussycat at work.” He hooked his thumbs into his front pockets. “Let’s get started.”

A lock of hair had fallen over his forehead. The rest of those sun-kissed waves were mussed as though he’d just rolled off a woman and out of bed. He was rumpled and all male. Hotter than sin. With just a smidgen of his inner beast liberated, he’d be irresistible to every female on planet earth and beyond.

Damn him.


On watery legs, she forced herself to the sink to mix her mom’s potions. “Take off your clothes.”

“What? Why?”

An image flashed in her mind of him tugging the stretchy boxers up his thighs, but only after she’d gotten a good look at his stuff. She wanted to see it again. Was that so damn bad? “Sorry, didn’t know you were modest.”

“I’m not. But I am curious.”

Becca put the bottle of cloves and apple seeds next to the Bordeaux, stalling for a good lie. At last, she had it. “I need to see the potion’s effect on every part of your body.” She turned. “All right?”

He stared at his groin. “By every part do you mean…”

“Nope. Just your skin.” She hoped.

He sighed in obvious relief and ditched his clothes, tossing them on one of the institutional chairs. Naked, unashamed and exceedingly well hung, he faced her.

The world stopped.

Slabs of firm, hard muscle draped his frame, all golden skin with no trace of a tan line. He swam or sunbathed in the nude and was more gorgeous than any Greek god Becca had read about in her literature classes.

“What now?” he asked.


“What happens now?”

Not what Becca wanted, that was for sure. “Turn around.”

He frowned. “Why?”

So she’d quit seeing herself on her knees, his glorious shaft in her palms. She’d sniff it first, then his balls, finally his thick thatch of hair, needing to drown in his scent. He’d smell of the outdoors and something masculine. She’d moan. He’d smile, then push to his toes as she licked his wiry curls and tasted his crown, lapping it as she would a scoop of decadent fudge ice cream, savoring the bead of moisture glistening on the small slit. His pre-come. Already excited, he’d go over the moon with her slavish attention, his rod growing longer and harder and…

Becca stifled a needy whimper and continued to lie, “So you don’t see the secret ingredients I’m using.”

“Would I even recognize them?”

“You might.”

“Then they’re normal.”

“Define normal.”

About Tina:
(You know you want to know!):

I’m an award-winning, bestselling novelist in erotic, paranormal, contemporary and historical romance for Samhain Publishing, Ellora’s Cave, Siren Publishing, Booktrope, and Kensington. Yay! Booklist, Publisher’s Weekly, Romantic Times and numerous online sites have praised my work, and trust me, I’m forever grateful for that. I’ve had my books reach finals in the EPIC competition, one title was named Book of the Year at a review site, and others have won awards in RWA-sponsored contests. I’m actually featured in the 2012 Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market. Talk about feeling like a freaking star. Before my writing career, I was the editor of an award–winning Midwestern newspaper and worked in Story Direction for a Hollywood production company. Outside of being an admitted and unrepentant chocoholic, I’ve flown a single-engine plane (scary stuff), rewired an old house using an electricity for dummies book, and have been known to moan like Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally whenever I’m eating anything Mexican or Italian. Yeah, I like to eat (burp).

You can check me out here – yes, I am everywhere!

Amazon author page:

My page at TRR:

EC Author Page:

Samhain Author Page:

Sweet ‘n Sexy Divas:

Romance Books 4 US:

Freeing the Beast - Teaser 1
Freeing the Beast - Teaser 2

Monday, March 9, 2015

Adapted for Film - Stacey Rourke

Presented by:
Sparkle Book Tours
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new release

Adapted for Film 
By Stacey Rourke 
Audience: General/adult  - Genre: Romantic comedy - Formats: E-book and Paperback - Publisher: Anchor Group Publishing - Cover by: Najla Qamber Designs -Date Published: March 9. 2015 
Aubrey Evans is living every author’s dream; her sizzling romance novel is being turned into a blockbuster film. She would be celebrating this momentous event, if she wasn’t busy fighting over every tiny production detail with the maddeningly cavalier director, Kole Camden. 
When news of their heated rivalry hits the gossip columns, drastic measures must be taken to save their sinking project. In an elaborate PR hoax, she is publicly linked to Greyson Meyers, the swoon-worthy star of her movie. A whirl-wind love affair is staged for the couple to mirror the steamy chapters of her own books. 
Can the introverted author resist the charms of Hollywood’s sexiest leading man? Or will love find her in the City of Angels? 
book info 
buy now amazon 
add to goodreads 
You would think sprinting across a movie studio, frantically waving a skirt over my head while onlookers gaped in alarmed bewildered, would have calmed my frenzy. You would be wrong. With each stomped step I rehashed the script changes, prop swaps, recasting, and inferior costuming. Or, as I now liked to refer to them, the elements that pushed me over the brink to finally achieving full-blown, bat-shit crazy status. 
“Camden! Camden!” I shouted, loud enough to strain my throat, the instant I caught a glimpse of him. 
His thumbs were looped in his front pockets, and his denim shirt rolled up his forearms. An annoyingly charming smile curled across his face as he turned my way. That lone dimple plunged deep into his cheek. 
Between heaving pants, I recited the speech I’d mentally prepared on my long journey across the excessively large lot. “Hey! I’ve got a question for you. If we hit a local bookstore we could probably find every book I’ve ever released. If you want, I could gather them all up in a big pile so you can take a shit right on them. Would you like that?” 
Kole’s eyes narrowed while his amused smile held steady, as if he was struggling to find his place in an argument I’d jumped a few chapters ahead in. “I feel like I know the right answer here, but there’s a chance this is a trick question.” 
“No, I’m serious!” I ranted, flicking a stray lock of hair from my eyes. “Because you seem so hell bent on destroying everything I’ve created, maybe we could try this method as a time saver!” 
“You know,” Kole tilted his head, his arms crossing over his chest, “after the whole pizza and beer comment I was a little worried things would be awkward between us, but I was wrong. Now it’s awkward. I see the distinction.” 
Aubrey!” Tandy hollered, her parts jiggling enough to catch the eye of every straight man on the premises in her jog to catch up. “Let’s take a time out before you yank your earrings off and forget you’re a lady.” 
“Nah, don’t tell her that!” Mateo rushed after her, holding his baggy pants up by his belt buckle. “Tackle her to the ground, roll around a little! I’ll video it and add it to my spank bank!” 
Ugh! Why the hell are you following me, you perverted little troll?” 
Ignoring their banter, I clasped my trembling hands in front of me and brought them to my lips. I forced myself to take a minute before I blurted something I couldn’t take back. “I mean no disrespect, truly. I’m sure Killer Robots from Outer Space, or whatever it was called, was a cinematic masterpiece. I’m just not sure your … vision is right for this film.” 
“It was the sixth in the franchise, actually. That would make it KRFOS6, by your titling.” His smile tightened around the edges, acting as the only hint of his underlying annoyance. Taking a step closer, he dropped his voice to a gruff whisper only I could hear—much to the disappointment of the crowd that had gathered. “I’ve directed Shakespeare to historic war films, and everything in between. If the content is there, I can bring it to life. Simple as that.” 
If?” I scoffed at his audacity, and I’m not an avid scoffer. “Two hundred and six weeks on the New York Times Best Sellers list says there’s something worthwhile there.” 
“Not every person that goes to the movies is a horny housewife,” he brought one hand to the side of his mouth as if revealing a huge secret to me alone, “so we may need to broaden our appeal just a tad.” 
A colorful spew of expletives was about to purge from my lips when Duncan stepped forward, nerves having drained his complexion waxy. 
“Mr. Camden?” he cautiously interjected from a safe distance—just in case one of us started swinging. “You’re needed on set. Greyson says he’s having trouble finding his motivation for the new scene.” 
“That’s my cue. Unless there was something else, Ms. Evans?” Kole grinned, one ebony brow raising in an open dare for me to make more of a spectacle of myself. 
Oh, how I wanted to call him every name I could think of, then make up a few new ones just for fun. Instead, I rose up on my tiptoes and jabbed my index finger into the dead center of his forehead. “This is me putting a pin in our conversation. It isn’t over.” 
In a bold move, his hand encircled my wrist and he tugged me to him. His firm but gentle grasp scorched my skin. My breath caught in a hitch, his penetrating stare making my muscles weak … despite my better judgment. “I’d be deeply disappointed if it was.” 
I wanted to be outraged he had dared touch me; however, I found my attentions were fixated on his lips as they formed each word. Dropping my hand, his lashes brushed the top of his cheek in a quick, cocky wink and then he was gone. Turning on his heel, he strode off with a determined gait, leaving Duncan scrambling to keep up and me stewing in my own pressure cooker of pheromones laced with contempt. 
book trailer 
about the author 
staceyRONE Award Winner for Best YA Paranormal Work of 2012 for Embrace, a Gryphon Series Novel 
Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012 
Turning Pages Magazine Winner for Best YA book of 2013 & Best Teen Book of 2013 
Stacey Rourke is the author of the award winning YA Gryphon Series as well as the chillingly suspenseful Legends Saga. She lives in Michigan with her husband, two beautiful daughters, and two giant dogs. She loves to travel, has an unhealthy shoe addiction, and considers herself blessed to make a career out of talking to the imaginary people that live in her head. 
media links 


Thursday, March 5, 2015

Tessie Bradford Has a New Release!

Thanks for having me here today, Amber!

Fulfilling Bess is available now at and coming soon to ARe, Amazon and other third party retailers!

Fulfilling Bess
Copyright: Tessie Bradford, March 2015


Bess Wilks assumes she is about to be sitting through another monotonous office meeting. Oh well, these gatherings do provide perfect opportunities to test out new recipes for her catering business on her willing coworkers. When Darrin Larabey walks into the conference room, Bess is eternally grateful that the treat table is close enough to use for support. Despite the passing of nine years since they’ve seen each other, her body instantly heats to boiling and all manner of decadent thoughts keep her from concentrating on the business at hand.

As vivid images of making love with Bess in every way imaginable dance in his head, Darrin can barely get through his presentation. The woman who has starred in his dreams for years is sitting within arm’s reach, flushed and fidgeting in her chair. The passage of time has obviously done nothing to diminish their smoking hot chemistry and now he’s not a newbie intern and she’s not his boss. The erotic possibilities are endless.


“Good thing I skipped lunch today. Yep, this one is definitely the best,” David announced when he finished chewing.
“You do realize you’ve said that after devouring your last three selections, right?” Carol pointed out.
“I predict extra gym time in our immediate future, dude,” Bob said while loading his plate to capacity. “We can carpool.”
“Hey, have you tried the crumb cakes, yet? They’re amazing. Adding more cinnamon to the topping is exactly what they needed.”
Bess Wilks smiled with pride. Her coworkers were staunch supporters of her second career as a caterer and weren’t shy about expressing which of her creations they liked and why others weren’t favorites. It had been awhile since she’d brought in a full spread of baked goods, and her colleagues’ across-the-board liking of her new recipes was thrilling.
“So none of you are interested in tasting one of my artfully displayed selections of seasonal fruits? Being carved into flower shapes enhances their flavor,” Bess joked.
“Don’t worry, we’ll get to those eventually, when the good stuff is gone.”
After a bit of laughter, the focus of conversation returned to speculation on why they were here. No one knew why Tom Billings, CEO of Mid-Michigan Freight, had called this meeting. There were so many operational issues in desperate need of attention that it was anyone’s guess as to today’s topic. Bess listened as she kept the various plates and baskets stocked with goodies.
“This meeting is officially started.” Tom’s booming voice preceded his entrance into the large conference room. “We’ve got company, people. Try to behave.”
Bess turned around. The room seemed to tilt. She backed up against the table for support, praying her ass wasn’t leaning against anything that would leave a stain on her light-tan skirt.
“Believe it or not, I’ve actually been listening to you guys bitching about our computer problems since we took on the new warehouses. Here’s our solution.” Tom patted the man standing next to him on the shoulder. “Darrin, let me introduce you to the staff that’s come on board since you left.”
Bess’ pulse pounded in her ears and in other, more intimate places. In all the countless hours she’d spent fantasizing about him, it’d never crossed her mind that Darrin Larabey had been getting more gorgeous since she’d seen him last; nine long years ago. Leave it to him to fill out in all the right places. The form-hugging, short-sleeved, black T-shirt accentuated his broadened shoulders and chest, and the jeans, shit; he was pure sex on a stick from the waist down. Images of running her hands all over his body bombarded her. She wanted to start in the strands of his dark, wavy hair and not stop until she’d investigated every tantalizing inch of his six-foot tall frame.
As Darrin greeted and chatted briefly with those he was meeting for the first time, Bess realized the difference in him was so much more than physical. Professional strength and poise radiated from this man. His quiet confidence, without a hint of arrogance as he explained his qualifications, was beyond impressive. Her nipples hardened scandalously in response.
“Hey, Bess, long time, no see,” Darrin said when he finally made his way to her.
Bess prayed she could keep her fingers from trembling as she shook his outstretched hand. He stared intently into her eyes, and his voice…damn, it was so rich and deep and sultry that it sent vibrations straight to her quickly dampening pussy.
“Darrin, wow, what a…ah…surprise.” She cleared her throat and desperately tried to rein in her licentious thoughts. This situation called for professional, complete, intelligent sentences. “So what brings you back to our little neck of the woods? You were so focused on making it big in the corporate world when you left for New York.” Bess inwardly cringed at the utter wrongness of what she’d let tumble out of her mouth.
“And my being here somehow implies to you that I didn’t succeed?” he asked before she could attempt an explanation for her stupid comment. “You wound me with your lack of confidence in my abilities.” The intensity reflected in his eyes, coupled with his devilish grin, raised goose bumps along her skin.
“Unless you all are looking to work overtime, let’s get down to business,” Tom stated with authority.
Everyone took a seat. Bess ended up in the chair directly across from Darrin. As he pulled folders out of his briefcase, she couldn’t help checking the ring finger on his left hand. It was empty, but what did that prove?
“Darrin, you have the floor,” Tom directed.
“Tom has brought me in to modernize and fully integrate MMF’s accounting, inventory, payroll and billing applications, as well as to develop the web-based end of the operation, an area that is sorely lacking at the moment. I’ll also be assessing the strengths and weaknesses of the company as a whole and offering solutions to facilitate growth and profitability.”
Bess struggled to concentrate on his words. If he wasn’t married, he quite probably had some ultra-hot girlfriend. There was no way on the planet some lucky woman wasn’t having her bed warmed by Darrin. If by chance he was unattached, wasn’t she being enormously conceited to even consider he may still be interested in her after she’d respectfully rebuked his attentions so many years ago? Bess licked her incredibly dry lips while staring at the play of musculature in his arms as he passed out documents.
“I’m contracted for twelve weeks, which is an aggressive timeframe for the scope of work. I need to meet with each of you as soon as possible to discuss your job duties and get your input on what you feel are the key areas of concern.”
So, he was here as an outside contractor, not an official employee; that meant the no inter-office dating policy didn’t apply. Bess’ heart thudded wildly as she carefully repositioned in her suddenly uncomfortable chair. Geez, is the air conditioning working in here? She watched Darrin jot down notes. His hands were so large, his fingers long, his nails perfectly shaped. Those hands were just the right size to cradle the back of her head as he held her steady for his kiss or, better yet, to cup the fullness of her breasts.
“So, Bess, is Monday at nine good for you?”
Her pen slipped from her fingers and clattered loudly on the tabletop when Darrin addressed her directly.
“Bess only works on Wednesdays and Thursdays, now. She came in this afternoon because of this meeting,” Tom answered.
“Really?” Darrin raised an eyebrow with the question.
“It’s fine, Darrin. You just let me know what’s good for you.”
“How about now?” Tom offered. “I think we’re done with the overview, right? Bess is still the accounting expert around here. You definitely should get with her, first.”

About Tessie Bradford
Tessie Bradford is a bestselling author of erotic romances which focus on journeys of sexual discovery. She loves creating strong independent women who, with the guidance and love of an alpha hero (or two or three), realize and embrace their submissive side. Bringing to life on the printed page the stories that are constantly swirling through her mind is a passion, a necessity, and truly a dream come true.
Tessie is a wife, mother and grandmother whose hobbies include developing new culinary delights for her family, reading a good book and travelling. Her adopted dog children provide constant entertainment, much joy and truth be told, are kind of in charge of the household!


Monday, March 2, 2015

Greater Expectations

Greater Expectations - Banner

TITLE – Greater Expectations
AUTHOR – Alexander McCabe
GENRE – Romantic Comedy
PUBLICATION DATE – August 5th 2014
LENGTH (Pages/# Words) – 257 pages / approx. 90,000 words
PUBLISHER – Self published ebook
COVER ARTIST – Kirsty C. Maclauchlan

It is said that the course of true love never runs smooth - even for us men. Yet it has never been easier to find love than in this modern digital era where the mighty computer has all but rendered Cupid redundant. Love is now to be found, quite literally, at your fingertips. Although love also seems to have changed with the times. This new love is deceitful and manipulative, cunning and untrustworthy. Love has gotten ugly. Thankfully, not all the answers to life’s mysteries are to be found in the computer and Cupid - battered and bruised as he may be - proves that he still has some game and a few tricks up his sleeve…

Greater Expectations - Book Cover


When first I met my now estranged wife during our Master’s year at university, I was seeing someone else too. In the main, this defines me as a “bastard”, although I preferred to think of myself as a “player”. Indeed I would argue that it falls under the guise of “sowing wild oats”. That’s the phrase that makes the practice somehow acceptable, and mothers the world over tell their sons that this is what they need to do before they settle down. The rite of passage into manhood as it were. At least, it’s what my mother told me. Women may argue this point - sorry, women will argue this point - but then they become mothers.
Naturally, they just don’t want those “wild oats” sown with their own daughters.
However, it is a fallacy to think that we men are completely heartless. I realised that I actually liked the girl that I eventually married so quickly ended all contact with the third party. In actual fact, she was a girl that I had been seeing first but only by a matter of a few weeks. I got the usual tirade of “bastard” texts, emails, and drunken voicemails. “I thought you were different” being the obligatory phrase that she just had to use during every one of these “opportunities”. In one particular instance, during which she also branded me a “coward”, I foolishly responded. I explained to her that I was merely being cruel to be kind as it was blatantly obvious to me that there we had no future together. Furthermore, after everything that had been said and done – more on her part now than mine - she would surely realise and accept that there was no going back as any trust and respect that had been built was now completely shattered.
I got the following reply:
“See, I knew you were different. That was lovely, you thinking of me and my feelings and us and our future. Why can’t we make this work? We can, you just have to trust yourself to trust me. Call me.”
It took another six weeks of ignoring and blocking her before she finally gave up. We had only been dating, if it could ever have been called that, for three weeks.
It takes true courage and bravery to finish any relationship. As my marital separation was only a week old, I understood that there may be some element of hope that we could fix it and move on. Yet I knew there was no way I could, or would, allow myself to stoop to such a level of indignity. My sense of pride has taken a pounding and is undoubtedly battered and bruised, but it is still there, standing tall and intact, however weakly. It is also getting stronger with every passing day.
All thanks to “Hope”.
“Hope” is a very strange feeling that displaces others such as “confidence”, “faith”, and “trust” and one that I have naturally gravitated towards my entire life. We are old friends, hope and I. Never have I dared to have “confidence” in my academic or sporting abilities, rather I always “hoped” that I would perform at my best as necessitated in any particular circumstance. When things had gone better than I had even dared “hope”, then I defaulted to the notion that is was merely my “good luck”, and vice versa. “Luck” has always provided me an excuse for all of life’s highs and lows and everything in between. Now I wanted to change all that. Now I wanted to control my existence.
Now I wanted to stir the stagnant pool that is my life proactively to feel like I am living again.
So that may well explain why I am now sat in only my boxer shorts in front of my computer, as the rain batters the window behind my curtains, and trying to focus on completing an online dating profile that includes a “personal statement” section. Apparently, its purpose is to allow me to describe myself in as broadly generic terms as possible in order to seem “normal” and “average” - and so maximising my appeal - whilst also trying to ensure that I am unique enough as to stand out. The logic of the concept is irrefutable and yet fantastically ridiculous.
It is also proving so challenging to the point of being quite impossible.
As a truck driver, I work most weekends and so this job commitment removes the more conventional ways of meeting women. Using a dating site makes far more sense in this new age of technology as it allows for an immediate connection without the need to wait for the weekend, or the demand of a decent chat up line. It cuts to the chase, so to speak. The site has posted a statistic that states over 28% of couples now “meet” online, so I am still happily in the minority. However, it is utterly galling to me that I should ever try to be “normal” or “average” to anyone as I have never considered myself as such.
It seems to me to be morally fraudulent. 
Online dating. It really is quite an absurd concept yet totally in concert with the modern era where people are too busy with work and life to take the time and make the effort for actually dating. Yet where is the romance of it? You will never hear a love song that refers to such sites. Can you imagine Rod Stewart singing “The Algorithm of my Heart”, or some such like?
No? Me neither.

After graduating with a couple of useless degrees in law, I left my Scottish homeland and wandered nomadically around the globe to experience the rich diversity of culture that the world has to offer.
On my travels, I met my Canadian wife in New Zealand, we were married in Scotland and now live in Canada with our newborn son. Although we currently call Toronto home, this is not yet a permanent arrangement and, rather alarmingly, we are perfectly happy about that…


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