Friday, December 19, 2014

Because Christmas never goes out of style

Here it is, less than a week before Christmas and I'm just getting the last of my gifts wrapped and more importantly, unwrapping a

 new cover on a brand new book! The Season For Miracles is a story I wrote years ago for a holiday party our writing group was having. I read this short tale as part of our Christmas presentation with the rest of my group, Annette Briggs, Jeanette Fletter, Edward Knapp and his wife JoAnne. I'll never forget the warmth of the day and how wonderful to spend part of the season with such awesome writers and dear friends.

Without further ado....




Blurb:

One snowy Christmas Eve Victoria and her little dog spend hours wandering the chilly streets selling ribbons and peering through store glass windows at the grand gifts designed to fill boys and girls
Christmas wishes everywhere.
But Victoria has a wish of her own. A yearning for something she wants more than anything else in the world. And perhaps this year Father Christmas will find her and make all her dreams come true.

When a withered old storekeeper and his gentle wife find themselves in her company, they are at a loss. The couple has long forgotten the joys of Christmas spent with a child and the magic sure to follow when they open their home and their hearts to... The Season for Miracles.



I'm sure by now you know this is not my usual romance but a children's story. And despite the fact it is a Christmas story, I don't think it'll be available until after Christmas. But no matter because its a heartwarming tale that can be read anytime of year. In fact, I've read it at least twenty times myself just this week!  I hope you have a wonderful holiday with all those you hold dear!

Come inside for a sneek peek...



  

 

 

The Season for Miracles

 

 

          London, 1875


         Victoria followed the vender’s cart for several blocks trailing the scent of roasted chestnuts as it rolled along Brick lane before a bitter gust of wind and snow carried the wondrous smell away. The peddler stopped at the snow covered crossing.  “Tis frozen, I am,” he said, rubbing his hands together quickly. “Think I’ll be callin’ it a night, wee one.”

         “See ye’ in the morning, then.”  The little girl said, waving goodbye as he turned down the deserted street corner.  “I’ve got a few ribbons left. I’ll see if the old store keep has a need of ‘em.” 

         “Good’night, then,” the peddler replied, wobbling off beneath the twilight sky and into a dusty mist of snow.

        Victoria shivered inside her coat as she climbed the wide snow covered steps to Cranstoun’s shop and pushed open the heavy door. Buoyant snow swooped in after her until the door slapped shut, cutting off the fierce wind and a flurry of scattered snow.

        A gray haired man stood behind the counter, peering over his spectacles at her, notably at the small dog trailing at her heels.

      “See here now, I don’t allow animals in the store.”  The old man’s voice was laced with annoyance, his mustache dancing like a wooly mammoth above his mouth.  He absently wiped the counter with a damp rag.  When she didn’t move, he leaned down closer.  “What’s the matter, hard of hearing?”  This time he said the words slowly, “No…pets…in…the…store,” he enunciated, then reared back to his full height, which wasn’t very tall, the bend in his back prevented him from towering.  “Heard me that time, didn’t you?”

         “Are you Mr. Cranstoun?”

         “I am.” He puffed up a bit. “I own this store…and every thing in it.” He’d grown accustomed to the street urchins rushing into his store, grabbing what little they could and scrambling out before he could catch them.  He’d learned their type, dirty and homeless, hardened to the core, and not a trustworthy one in the lot. “What business do you have with me?”

         Her lower lip drew up slightly and began to tremble as she fidgeted with the bottom of her shoddy coat, draped loosely around her and held together with a single button.

        “I come to sell ye some ribbons,” she said in a squeaky voice, her tiny shoulders sagging in defeat.  She held out a handful of silk, a bountiful array of scarlet, emerald and blue ribbons that dangled wet in her palm.  Her golden locks of hair hung in a drenched mass of tangled strings as well, while the melting snow clinging to her shoes created a watery puddle on the floor.

         “I got ribbons,” he bellowed.  “Bolts of them.” 

         Her eye’s swelled with tears. 

        “Oh, for the love of Pete….” He muttered and hurried around the counter.

         “Did you say something, Cilas?”  A voice called from the backroom.  The sound was soft and warm, drawing the child’s gaze to the rear of the store.

         The dog let out a warning bark when Cilas squatted in front of the girl. 

         “Do I hear a dog?”  The woman entered the room through a curtained doorway. “Why, it is a dog!” she exclaimed.  “And a little girl too.”

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Kindle Countdown .99 cent sale!!

 
 
Hurry! Grab the Man of Her Dreams for under a buck!! 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Excerpt from Man of Her Dreams. 

 
 

Stepping into the store was like passing a threshold to another era. The wood screen door slapped softly behind her and the smell of licorice drifted from a glass bin beneath the counter. Dark walnut shelves made up the aisles and were filled with incense, candles, soaps and handmade figurines. Each corner she turned yielded a wicker basket brimming with peanut brittle, pistachios, and cashews. 

Her gaze flew from one wall to another covered with velvet paintings of unicorns, Jesus, and Elvis. Multi-colored whirligigs dangled from the ceiling, spinning wildly despite the fact there was no breeze. The floor squeaked whenever she stepped on a loose board. 
“Awful late to be out driving.” 
The voice came from behind, low and smooth and Leslie eased around to get a glimpse of the owner. Who-la-la… She’d swallowed a gush of air. Tall, dark and handsome didn’t begin to describe the guy standing a few feet away. Her breathing returned, soft, but shaky, and with a tad more control than the gulping fish-mouth a minute ago.
His dark, brooding eyes surveyed her, a slight cleft chin tilted upward a notch. When he smiled, a dimple appeared on the right side of his cheek. It required enormous effort to drag her gaze from the lean, muscular body to look at her watch. 

“Depends on what you call late,” she said, the words sounding suggestive even to her ears as she glanced at her watch. It was only 10:30 p.m. He carried an armload of canned vegetables to a display stand. 
“We usually roll up the sidewalks after supper. And by ten, most hard working folks are in bed.”
             Since she was ogling him, she may as well enjoy the whole package. Broad shoulders, tanned forearms, and strong hands so perfect she nearly stumbled. “Are you Jay?” she murmured.
“I am.”
“Hi. My name’s Leslie. The guy out there said you might have takeout or something?” 

“That right?” He chuckled and she wondered what she’d said that was so funny. Her heart thundered when he stepped around the tower of corn and peas and continued placing one can carefully on top of another.  “If Harvey sold take out it’d probably be cornbread and Northern Beans.”

The image of plump white beans swimming in broth and golden cornbread smothered with butter made her mouth water.  “That sounds good.”
“You’re serious?”
“Just hungry.”
           “I’d be glad to make you a sandwich.”

The sensation of homemade bean soup warming her empty belly quickly zapped and her heart sank. “No white beans or warm bread?”
He shook his head. “Hate to disappoint you.”
A sandwich would have to do. “Turkey?”
“Spam.”
“I’ll pass,” she laughed. “Thanks just the same.” She wandered slowly around the store increasingly aware of his gaze upon her. Not the kind of surveillance to see if she was shop lifting gaze. But the one of a guy who’s interested in a woman kind of look. Her insides fluttered. The throbbing in her head returned and she reached for a bottle of aspirin. This was so weird. One minute she was planning a wedding and the next, a single woman on a mission, determined to forget the last few hours and start fresh. But first, she needed to get through tonight. Uncle Bob had been divorced five times and claimed the only warmth he needed came from a small bottle of Old Crow he kept stuffed in his hip pocket.  
Leslie grabbed a couple bags of chips, some beef jerky and orange juice then carried the armload to the counter. “I didn’t see any wine. Where—”
“Sorry. You’ll have to wait until Reams opens in the morning.” When he nodded toward the window, threads of black hair spilled onto his forehead. “Down the road and on the right. Has everything you’ll need from bologna and cheese to soap and tissue.”

“Tomorrow?” she said, becoming more frustrated by the minute. All she wanted to do was find the cabin, put on her bathrobe and have a glass of wine. Was that too much to ask?
“At nine.” 
A small carton of novelty bottles sat near the cash register. A variety pack of vodka, whiskey and rum. 
“This’ll do in a pinch,” she said and scooped up a handful. 
A dream catcher suspended from the ceiling twirled gently. Soft turquoise, pink, and gray downy feathers woven around a circle and laced with white leather. The effect was mesmerizing and signified a belief in possibilities, the promise of hope. “Is that for sale?”
“Looking for a little magic?”
Even though he spoke softly, she saw the judgmental attitude behind the casual remark. Seems Mr. Handsome was just like every other man she’d run across, hung up on appearances. Go figure. Would anyone care or remember that tonight Leslie had been knocked flat on her face by a no-good, two-timing cheat? Or that her prince charming turned out to be a toad? If magic could be found in this tiny bottle, she was all for it.

Pasting on her best smile she said, “Isn’t everybody?”

 
 






I just love sales and I'm super excited to announce my upcoming- less than a buck countdown
that starts this Thursday, Dec. 4th.

If you've ever needed a dose of magic, the kind best friends deliver, then you're definitely going to want one! Thanks much! Oh, and don't forget to add your own two cents by leaving a review!




http://www.amazon.com/Man-Dreams-Daydream-Believers-Book-ebook/dp/B00LBKD5U0/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1417489640&sr=1-1&keywords=teresa+blue


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