Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Cata-Romance reivew of Cat O'Nine Tales

Genre: See Review
ISBN: 0978713907
Page Count: 274
Price: $12.49
Reviewer: Donna Zapf

Sensuality Rating: SensuousStar
Rating: 4.5 Stars

Author's Website: http://www.deborahmacgillivray.co.uk/

CAT O’NINE TALES is a special anthology edition of nine delicious award winning stories of romance and the kitty cats that help it along!

Bad Cat
Katlyn and her part Scottish wildcat live on the beach in Destin, Florida next door to hunky Ian Giles. Katlyn conspires with Auggie to lure Ian over with his bad cat behavior. But Ian needs no excuse to be seduced by the lovely Katlyn since seduction is on his mind as well.

Getting It in the End
Romance writer Catlynne Falconer and her half Scottish wildcat Jack attend the Writers Renfaire in York, England. There they run into the one man Catlynne hates, book reviewer James Douglas Kinloch. He has bad mouthed every one of Catlynne’s books and despite their physical attraction she only wants to distance herself from him. The rub is James has Jack and he will not give him up without confronting Catlynne and what a confrontation it is!

Double, Double, Toil & Trouble
This is a contemporary tale with paranormal elements. Observed by their ghostly grandparents, Gillian Grant and Cian Mackinnon both lay claims to the Castle Dunnascaul but Cian was given the castle by his grandfather and the outlying cottage was given to Gillian. Gillian feels loyalty to her family and the legendary treasure to be found at the castle, even though she loves Cian, and so stubbornly continues the Grant vs Mackinnon feud. Cian is besotted by Gillian and tries to convince her to forget the feud and come, with her cat Basil, to live with him in Dunnascaul. Could love be the real treasure?

Rider in the Storm
Seven years ago to the night, Ciara MacIan lost her fiancĂ©e in a tragic car accident. After a goodbye visit to Derek’s grave, vowing to go on with her life, Ciara rounds the very curve in the road where he was killed and sees another red car in trouble. A strange man flags her down and Ciara takes him to her home as the weather rages. Strangely she is not afraid and as the night progresses she and her cat Sinnjinn feel as though this man is someone they both know. Who is this man and will he be the one to help Ciara love again?

Devil in Spurs
A historical tale during the days of highway men and the ton, Devil in Spurs is also known as Desdein Deshaunt, otherwise known as the Marquis de Fournier, a nobleman by day and highway man by night. Desdein’s brother has been mistakenly arrested as the Devil in Spurs and Desdein must find a way to save him. He decides to kidnap his enemy’s daughter, the man that shot Desdein’s father, and exchange her for his brother’s freedom. As it turns out, Lady Ashlyn Findlater is a lonely young lady loved only by her aging cat Cyril. Ashlyn captures Desdein’s heart but has little value to her father. As this emotional story reaches its climax, nothing is as it seems.

All I Want for Christmas is a Hula-Hoop and a Mother
This is a precocious Christmas story that will have you grinning ear to ear. Five year old Allison contrives to bring her father and her ballet teacher, Leslie, together to make her Christmas wish come true. All she wants is a kitty, a pony, a hula-hoop and a mother. As a blizzard descends, Keon Challenger and daughter Allison drive Leslie and her cat Alvin home so she can take care of her pony and are promptly snowed in for Christmas. Do Christmas wishes really come true?

Blue Christmas Cat
Dara Seaforth is alone on Christmas, her beloved kitty Dexter has “crossed the rainbow bridge” and she has never found a love to replace her childhood crush, Rhys St. John. After fifteen years away, Rhys has returned to his home in hopes to find Dara and claim the love that family obligations denied him so many years ago. But Rhys hesitates and only the search for his wayward cat Elvis brings him to Dara’s door. Will the magic of Christmas and Elvis help the two to find their fated love?

Chicken What Du Hell
Catonia Flemy confronts Remy and his naughty cat Bubba again with evidence in hand, a snake brought to her by an adoring Bubba. Remy Kinross wants Catonia and puts on his Cajun personality to woo her. It works until Catonia finds out from a tabloid that Remy really is Royce Kinross, Marquis of Dunmoor and Seafeld, and that he has lied to her. It takes some fast talking and more snakes to convince her that Remy and Bubba are genuine. This is a witty tale guaranteed to keep you laughing.

A Very Special Man
Desdemona “Dezzy” Vashon confides to her cat Simon that all she wants is a special man to love her. Simon wants that too. He is a man trapped in a cat body for hundreds of years. He loves Dezzy and knows she is the one to break his curse if only he can convince her.

A purrrfect read for romance and cat lovers alike; CAT O’NINE TALES by award winning Deborah MacGillivray has something for everyone. From contemporary to historical and paranormal to comedy these stories will delight and entertain with amazing characters, unique plots and varied settings. Ms. MacGillivray showcases her signature razor-sharp style in this special collection that must be read and read again.

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Friday, November 16, 2007

Love Under the Mistletoe review from The Romance Studio

Love Under the Mistletoe Anthology

Contemporary, Paranormal and Historical Romances
Authors: Deborah Macgillivray, Leanne Burroughs,
Amy Blizzard, Gerri Bowen, Billie Warren Chai and
Judith Light

Available from Highland Press
ISBN: 978-0-9800356-2-9
November 2007

First in this book is the story entitled Forever Love. This is a historical work concerning a man named Hank Beaumont, his horse Stripper, and his rescuing a woman kidnapped after her stage was robbed. Her “husband” was killed. Do you believe in ghosts?

It Must Have Been The Mistletoe told of Kacey Michaels who moved to Mistletoe, Tennessee, and Nicholas Klaus, a widower with eight children, who owned a toy store. This tale will make you question magic and whether or not mistletoe has magical powers.

Building gingerbread houses has been a long-standing tradition at Christmastime. Gingerbread and Mistletoe brought together a competition, with Matt Watson from Hoosier Bakery and an unlikely partner, Riley Callahan, trying to win a $2,000 prize. What can you substitute for mistletoe?

If you like stories about expectant mothers you will love Calling Hailey’s Bluff. Hailey, a computer program specialist, was called cross country to work on a program for Johnson Space Center. Her baby’s father, Lt Col Todd Coopersmith, was stationed there. This novella gives new meaning to surprise delivery.

A little bit mystical, along with ‘wild blood,’ slanted this book from its basic historical genre. Melody had loved Trevor Wilde, Earl of Ardmoor, for over ten years. He did not love her. A Chorus Singing Love by Gerri Bowen addressed the question of true soul mates.

Finally, A Very Special Man, written by Deborah MacGillivray, spanned three centuries with Simon, a big black cat, and Desdemona Vashon (Dezzy) and a spell begging to be broken to assure true love.

This anthology is available at the perfect time of the year -— Christmas. We love the holiday season and now we have another reason to add to our list. Love Under the Mistletoe is a six-author anthology which has something to offer anyone who loves to read. Whatever your genre, you’ll find a novella which addresses your desires.

The varied stories were great reads and the characters were well thought out and likeable. They worked well together as stories with good background information and wonderful endings. I recommend this book to everyone. You won’t be sorry.

Reviewer: Brenda Talley
November 16, 2007
The Romance Studio

Thursday, November 15, 2007

CoffeeTime's Review of Cat O' Nine Tales

ISBN# 978-0978713904
October 2007
Highland Press
PO Box 2292, High Springs, Florida 32655
Trade Paperback
274 Pages
Romance Anthology

Rating: 5 cups

Bad Cat

Katlyn MacKenzie only recently moved into her Aunt’s beachfront property in Destin, Florida. Her part Scottish wildcat Auggie Moggie has every animal within a ten block radius terrified, and a few people too. However, he does not terrify her sexy neighbor.

Ian St. Giles is a writer, and a transplant from Britain. He is very attracted to Katlyn, and uses every excuse he can to see her, including her cat Auggie.

When Auggie steals Ian’s steak dinner before he can make it, and gobbles it, it is the last straw for Ian. Will Ian be able to use Auggie’s antics to his advantage, or will his very real irritation with the cat lose him Katlyn?

Bad Cat is hilarious and one of my favorite stories in this anthology. The attraction between Ian and Katlyn is explosive. You will not want to miss this one!

Getting it in the End

Catlynne Falconer is a romance novelist. Her cat Jack is half Scottish wildcat, and huge. She based one of her heroes, a man turned into a cat by a powerful witch, on him. Because of this she brings Jack with her to the Writers Renfaire in York, England. She does not figure on meeting her arch enemy.

James Douglas Kinloch pens a monthly column on books for Money & Trends Magazine. He takes to Catlynne right away when he sees her sexy self. However, he does not know who she really is.

When James gets tangled in Jack’s leash and crashes to the ground, he meets Catlynne for the first time. The attraction is mutual until he introduces himself and Catlynne realizes just who he is; the book reviewer who has trashed every one of her romance novels and caused her sales to drop. Will Catlynne be able to get past what James has done, or will she accept their mutual attraction?

Like Bad Cat, Getting It In the End is highly entertaining. Jack cracked me up with how he takes to James right away when he normally does not take to anyone but Catlynne. I also loved Catlynne’s reaction once she finds out who James is. The attraction is sizzling and very much worth reading.

Double, Double, Toil & Trouble

Gillian Grant has just moved into a tiny cottage on Mackinnon land with the laziest cat in the world, Basil. She is not a happy camper because the previous owner, her grandmother’s lover, did not leave her Castle Dunnascaul as he promised; instead leaving it to his grandson. Instead, he left her the cottage.

Cian Mackinnon thinks it is only his right to have been left the castle, although he does not begrudge Gillian the cottage. He thinks Gillian is very sexy, but is not so enamored of her antics.

When Gillian puts up a chain to prevent him using the driveway to the castle, Cian decides he has had enough. One in a long line of incidents to show her displeasure not getting ownership of the castle, she does her best to keep the feud between the Grants, the original owners of the castle, and the Mackinnon’s the newest ones, going strong. Will Cian be able to convince her that the feud is meaningless, and best put to rest? Or will Gillian keep it going and refuse to give into their very real attraction?

Double Double Toil & Trouble had me roaring with laughter. Gillian's determination to show her displeasure in any way she can, including and up to laying down in the driveway so cars can't pass had me roaring with laughter. This story is a keeper!

Rider in the Storm

Ciara MacIan lost her fiancé Derek whom she loved very much seven years before. Her heart has never healed from the loss and if not for his cat Sinnjinn, she would possibly not have survived the loss.

Roarke Devlin has just moved to the Palisades area in Kentucky. He nearly died seven years before when a virus destroyed his heart. If not for a life saving transplant he would never have survived. Now he has memories he cannot explain; memories that include Ciara.

When Ciara goes to her finace’s grave hoping to bid him a last farewell for good, she instead gets roaring drunk, cuts herself, and goes to sleep on his grave. Desperate to put the horrible memories of how he died to rest, she takes the road where his fatal car crash took place. Just as she arrives on the scene, a car and a man that remind her of Derek are there ahead of her. Everything about Roarke reminds her of Derek. Will she be able to accept that love is eternal and anything is possible? Or will she turn Roarke away when she discovers his secret?

Rider in the Storm is a real tear jerker. Unlike the previous three stories this one grabs you by the heart and will not let go. The idea of eternal love is rampant throughout, making this one a keeper.

Devil in Spurs

Lady Ashlyn Findlater has only her cat Cyril to truly love her. Her father has ignored her her entire life, and only recently brought her into society with the idea of marrying her off.

Desdein Deshaunt, otherwise known as the Marquis de Fournier, breeds horses and plays the role of disenchanted nobleman by day, and the highwayman ‘the Devil in Spurs’ by night. He is out for revenge against Ashlyn’s father who killed his own father in a duel twenty years earlier.

When Desdein’s young brother Jeremy is arrested as the Devil in Spurs by mistake, he will do anything to get him out, including kidnapping Ashlyn in order to exchange her for Jeremy. However, Ashlyn is not at all what he thought, and it becomes obvious once he gets to know her that she is the woman for him. But he has gone down a road there is no turning back from and he cannot allow his brother to go to Newgate for something he himself has been doing. Will Ashlyn find a way to help him as she longs to do once she discovers who he is? Or will someone she loves die?

Another tear jerker, Devil in Spurs is none-the-less very heartwarming. Ashlyn as the child who was never really loved and always ignored is still quite a strong personality. I liked how Desdein comes to understand what is truly important in this story. A wonderful romance worth every dime.

All I Want for Christmas is a Hula-Hoop and a Mother

Leslie Seaforth is a ballet instructor. She is divorced and longs for a husband and child of her own. When she gets a gander at Keon Challenger, one of her student’s fathers, she is very attracted.

Keon Challenger loves Kentucky and is a transplanted Brit. He adores his daughter Allison and will do just about anything for her, although he has no idea how he is going to fulfill her request for a mother.

When a blizzard hits the area, Keon sees it as his prime chance for him and Allison to spend some time with Leslie, getting to know her better. When she will not come home with him and Allison, he insists on driving her home. Because of the weather conditions they end up staying at Leslie’s home. In a very short amount of time it becomes clear to all of them that they are each what the other needs, but will Keon be able to convince Leslie that he is the real thing, and that he loves her? Or having been burned once, will Leslie turn away her heart’s desire?

All I Want for Christmas is a Hula-Hoop and a Mother is a precious story. I loved Allison’s perkiness and how smart she was. Keon is the perfect dad and one that any little girl would be proud to call her own. The author portrayed Leslie’s pain over her past and her reaction to what had happened in a realistic fashion. A heart warming story you will not want to miss.

Blue Christmas Cat

Dara Seaforth has loved Rhys St. John her entire life. Sure that she can never love another, she chooses to live alone. Her beloved cat Dexter has gone to kitty heaven and she longs for another cat to love.

Rhys St. John did what his family wanted when he was young. He took over the family business, building it up from the ruin his father made it, and married the so-called suitable woman when his mother played the guilt card to get him to do it. Now newly divorced, he has returned home to try and get the woman he loves back. He and his cat Elvis, that is.

When Dara asks the spirit of Dexter to bring her another cat to love, she is astonished when seconds later she hears a cat crying on her front stoop. She brings in the cat called Elvis, never knowing that he belongs to Rhys. When Rhys shows up to get his cat back, he uses it as a ploy to get to Dara to realize he loves her. Will Rhys be able to convince her that he has always loved her and wants her now? Or will Dara be to afraid to trust him?

A cute story where the magic of Christmas is rampant. I really enjoyed reading about Elvis the cat and his people. The love story here is one to be treasured and Dara and Rhys felt like old friends by the time I had finished reading about them. A well thought out and beguiling story.

Chicken What Du Hell

Royce “Remy” Kinross, Marquis of Dunmoor and Seafeld, is hiding out in Louisiana with his Cajun relatives. Tired of women throwing themselves at him for his money, including an ex-wife, he longs for a woman who will love him for himself. He thinks that someone might be Catonia Flemyn. One thing is for sure, his cat Bubba is in love with her.

Catonia Flemy used to be a super model until she left it all behind, including her ex-husband who did not like the idea of losing his jet setting lifestyle. She too longs for love, but is willing at least for the moment to settle for a house in Louisiana that is all her own.

When Bubba leaves a love gift of yet another dead snake on Catonia’s bed, she has had enough. As with the other two “gifts” she brings it right back to his owner Remy. Remy might give her the hots, but the huge feline continuing to leave her gifts is getting on her nerves. When Remy tries to use the incident as an excuse to get her to have dinner with him, she turns him down flat. Eventually she lets her guard down and they get close; that is, until she sees something in the tabloids that makes her blood boil. Will she listen to him when he tries to explain, or turn her back on him?

Chicken What Du Hell had me roaring with laughter, particularly Bubba’s antics and his obvious adoration for Catonia who does not quite know what to do with him. Remy is a wonderful hero, and I really enjoyed how the author got this couple together.

A Very Special Man

Desdemona “Dezzy” Vashon is an aspiring author. She lives alone in the house her grandmother left her with her cat Simon.

Simon is more than just a cat. He is Simon Ravensdale, Viscount Moordon, only he has been a cat for so long he often forgets. He is in love with Dezzy.

When Simon discovers that he can communicate with Dezzy in her sleep, he uses it to his advantage, for it is then he can make love to her in her dreams. However, Simon wants more. He wants the reality. If only he could remember what he needed to have her do to return him to his normal state. When he finally does remember and gets Dezzy to do what needs to be done to free him, they are both ecstatic. However, Dezzy sees more problems ahead; ones that she thinks are insurmountable. Will Simon be able to convince her that together they can do anything?

A Very Special Man is a magical tale of true love that is perfect for Christmas. I loved reading about how Dezzy brings out what is necessary in Simon to help him help her to break the spell. Simon and Dezzy are perfect together and it was a joy to read about how Simon convinces her anything is possible.

Cat O’Nine Tales is definitely a keeper. The sex is hot and varied, but shot through with a lot of emotion making each story one to be savored while reading. The cats added a lovely dimension that only cats can, and I adored their individual personalities. Each story is one to be treasured, and I know I will be rereading them over and over for many years to come. If you love cats, and a good love story as I do, then you will not want to miss this wonderful collection as it is phenomenal. This anthology belongs on every romance lovers bookshelf!

Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance
Reviewer for Karen Find Out About New Books

Friday, November 9, 2007

The Salt Maiden by Colleen Thompson

Read a Sample Chapter

The Salt Maiden by Colleen Thompson
  • Publisher: Dorchester Publishing Company, Incorporated
  • Pub. Date: November 27, 2007
  • ISBN-13: 9780843960174

Colleen Thompson is an author waiting to “happen”. Oh, she has been out there, is well respected as a growing talent. She has a solid backlist of amazing tales; only, she just has that presence of an author ready to have that break out novel. The Salt Maiden is that book. Her skill and flow of the prose marks her as a master wordsmith. She weaves an intricate plot into this eerie, sinister tale that kept me spellbound. This simply is Colleen Thompson at her very best.

Dana Vanover is resolute to find her sister. Her determination takes her back to the desert town of Devil’s Claw, where she encounters nothing but resistance to the answers she’s come to find. The strongest stonewalling to her prodding and probing for an explanation about her sister’s disappearance comes from Sheriff Jay Eversole. The sheriff makes no bones about it – he wants her gone for more reasons than one. However, Dana is not leaving without her sister. As she continues the hardheaded pursuit of the riddle of the mystery, Jay causes other problems – namely the passions he provokes in her. Lives are at peril in this deadly sinister story, and under the careful crafting of this very talented writer, the reader is guaranteed a tale that will keep them on the edge of the seat, with temperatures rising, as they turn page after page unable to put this novel down.

Very highly recommended.

review by~~ Deborah Macgillivray, The Best Reviews

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Single Titles.com 5 star review of Riding the Thunder

Genre: contemporary
ISBN: 0505526921
Page Count: 354
Price: $6.99
Reviewer: Donna Zapf
Sensuality Rating: SultryStar
Rating: 5 Stars

Award winning author Deborah MacGillivray continues her creative Sister of Colford Hall series with her hauntingly magic novel, RIDING THE THUNDER.

Content to own and run the 1960s style Windmill diner, motel, drive-in theatre and swim club in rural Kentucky, Asha Montgomerie relishes the slower pace. Her employees are like family, all finding their home at the Windmill. There are even resident ghosts haunting the diner; two star crossed lovers killed in a questionable car accident and a manic juke box that plays tunes from the 60s at will. Oddly enough, Asha seems to have a connection with the ghostly lovers through her fey Picish powers her Grandmother told her all Montgomerie women posses. Unfortunately, Asha’s contentment is threatened by a large conglomerate, Trident, that sent a representative, Jago Fitzgerald, with offers to buy the Windmill and her brother Liam’s horse farm. Of course Asha has no intention of selling but Jago certainly plays havoc with her libido the minute she lays eyes on him.

Jago Fitzgerald Mershan is struck by the beauty of the feisty auburn haired Asha. He rapidly falls for her and immediately begins a battle with his guilt. Jago is deceiving Asha and plans to “take over” the Montgomerie holdings in Kentucky even as his brothers are doing the same in England and Scotland. Jago begins to make himself at home at the Windmill by first buying a vintage Shelby Mustang then a classic Electra Glide motorbike and finally being adopted by a large black cat. With Jago becoming part of the Windmill family, who will he betray, Asha or his brothers?

RIDING THE THUNDER rumbles along taking readers on an entertaining ride. Deborah MacGillivray gifts us with well matched heroes, luscious love scenes and engaging secondary characters that ensnare us in the suspenseful plot of her witty romantic story with a paranormal touch. My advice; get this book and ride the thunder!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Summoning Thunder

Where Inspiration is Found
or How to Summon Thunder

I leave pieces of myself in my contemporary paranormal romances. In The Invasion of Falgannon Isle and now Riding the Thunder I draw heavily on memories of growing up, of places and people that touched me in some form. Most of these people and many spots are now long gone, though they still live in those shining memories dear to me. In The Invasion of Falgannon Isle, it was the Scots and their wonderful humor, the ability to accept there’s more to this world than just what we see, their ability to laugh at any situation. Not just at, but with. I took those wonderful memories and spun a fantasy that created an imaginary isle with 213 bachelors and with only three unmarried women―two were gay and the remaining one was a woman the males couldn’t court because of an ancient curse! It’s a Brigadoonish romp that came straight from my heart.

When I moved to the second book in the series, I wanted to do something fresh, not a carbon copy of the first book, so I looked to the other half of my roots―Kentucky. One reader who recently read Riding the Thunder said she loved the book so much she wished there really was a place called The Windmill. Well, in truth there was. There actually was once upon a time a small restaurant with that name on Lexington Pike, that was about halfway between Lexington and Nicholasville. Long ago, the suburban sprawl of Lexington saw the distance between the massive college town and the small southern community fade. My parents were separated, then later divorced; Father lived in Britain, while my mum lived in Kentucky. I stayed with her during the school year, but holidays and summers I spent in England and Scotland. Sadly, my parents still cared about each other, so it was too painful for them to face each other when they ‘handed me over’, so for a week or two I was sent to stay with Mum’s step-sister, until I was collected by the other parent. I always enjoyed those stays.

I got to see the beautiful horse farms in the bluegrass area. I enjoyed the small town pace, where everyone knew each other, where eccentrics and oddballs were relished, much in the same manner the Scots did. These out of way places have their own pace, and it touched my imagination. So, yes, the Windmill did exist. A horse farm was across the road from it. It had a Wurlitzer that tended to play the wrong tunes at times. There was a swim club, a motel and a Drive-in. And there was even a young man nicknamed Oo-it!

Over the years, I visited the area less and less. It hurt to see the city sprawl, the giant Lexington pushing closer and closer, until finally consuming the tiny town of Nicholasville. All its special flavor, its quirkiness was lost. Only those images, those seeds lived in my mind. I wanted to capture that timeless feeling, so thus my stage was set for Jago Mershan and Asha Montgomerie.

My stories always evolve with the questions of who and why. I see a scene in my head, such as the opening of Chapter One. I saw Jago sitting at the bar, waiting, and drinking a beer.
Who is he? Why is he there? Whom is he waiting for? Why is he waiting? He’s waiting for Asha naturally. Then when Asha enters, it’s more questions. Where did she just come from? I knew who she was basically, since she was the little sister of the heroine in the first book in the series, but the questions then moved me to defining Asha and her quirky world.

Cats seem to wander into my stories, so I wasn’t surprised the nameless cat appeared and took up with Jago. I kept trying to name the black cat, only he defied being named, so that became a part of the story as well.

As for the tune Tell Laura I Love Her―the song was very popular when I was a child and it seemed play endlessly on the Jukebox at the real Windmill Restaurant. Everything is so sharp in my mind. I recall the beautiful Wurlitzer, the wallet changers on the walls by each booth, the way the sun came through the plate glass windows that ran across the front. The Drive-in showing Vincent Price movies, the scent of baby oil and chlorine from the swim club, the smells, the diner’s chatter, the Kentucky River, Lock 8, all of these elements created vivid memories within me that lived and were nurtured within my heart.

The one day, Riding the Thunder was born.

Mike Duncan's CD, has both versions
of "Lost for Words" that I used on my book videos, and his song is even a part
of the story!