Thursday, December 29, 2016

Emmelia Spenser, Mining Guild Chairman of the Board

What is your story?
It's not just my story, it's the story of the galaxy. I just happen to be in it. It's told in the Lone Wolf Series.
Who are you?
I am Emmelia Spenser, Chairman of the Mining Guild Board of Directors.
Where do you live?
I live in the penthouse of the Mining Guild Tower. I have other homes scattered about, but I'm most secure here.
Are you the hero of your own story?
I'm not the hero of anything. In fact, most would consider me rather villainous.
Care to explain that last answer?
As Chairman of the Board, I must make the tough decisions. You don't win many friends that way. In fact, there are probably dozens of people trying to kill me and thousands who want me dead.
Do you embrace conflict?
Conflict seems to embrace me. By the very nature of my job, I am in a constant state of conflict and turmoil. Do I embrace it? No. I hire skilled people to deal with it for me.
How do you see yourself?
I am cold hearted, cool headed, hard as nails, soft as silk, I am a conundrum, a paradox. I have been described as exotic, classic, Aquiline, and statuesque. That makes me sound like an island, a book, a bird and a hunk of rock! I'm a lady, pure and simple, high maintenance, feminine and capable of taking out any competition with a single call.
Who would you call?
Why, Wil VanLipsig of course. That man can take care of anything.
How do your friends see you?
Ssylvenia is the closest friend I have. Sometimes I'm sure she thinks I'm horrible. I make the tough decisions. She doesn't always agree with me.
How do your enemies see you?
They don't call me the Dragon Lady for nothing. Oh, yes. I know about that. I've been called worse. Who cares what the bastards call me as long as they leave me alone? And if they don't, I call Wil.
How does the author see you?
Amazingly, she admires me. She sees me as a woman caught in circumstances not of her making. My father was murdered when I was 25, I inherited the job as Chairman when he died. My life has never been my own. Dellani sees me as someone who's been trapped in a life she hates. And I hate myself sometimes too.
What do you think of yourself?
I'm really a lonely, unloved child inside. My father was cold, harsh, uncaring. He never expressed any love of me, although, in my youth, I said I loved him often. Now I wonder if I ever did.
Do you have money troubles?
I'm among the richest, most powerful women in the galaxy. The top three are: Chairman Aisulov of the Galactic Committee, Chairman Shimmelfenig of the Navigation Guild and me. Not necessarily in that order, however.
What is your most closely guarded secret?
I don't tell secrets. That's one reason that I've stayed alive so long
Who was your first love?
I fell in love with the stable boy at my grandfather's estate. Richard was only ever kind to me, though I was a complete bitch to him when we met. After my grandfather condemned my behavior, that changed. We became dear friends, then lovers. I'm sure my father and grandparents would have been horrified to know I lost my virginity to a servant. That is, perhaps, one reason I did it. My younger years were full of small, secret rebellions which would, had they been discovered, have caused a huge furor. I was, even then, extremely good at keeping secrets.
Have you ever had an adventure?
Most certainly! When my father was murdered, Wil saved me by kidnapping me and spiriting me away to a desert world far off in the galaxy. We saved our own lives, helped Lena, brought Murdock back to life and watched as Valkyrie's daughter was born. She's my goddaughter, you know.
Was there a major turning point in your life? My father's death. I became who I am today.
What is your favorite color?
The color of the sea outside my windows.
Do you have any regrets?
I regret that I was thrown into this life so young. I never had a husband, child or a true relationship, not after Richard. Sadly, that was doomed to fail before it began. He's married now, to a lovely woman, and they have four wonderful children. I wish that had been my life.
© 2016 Dellani Oakes

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Red River Radio Presents What's Write for Me with Gail and Jim

4755b-red2briver2bradio2blogoOn the last show of 2016, Dellani and Christina welcome back one author and greet a new one.
gail-cavanaughThough it's been awhile, we are pleased to welcome back Gail Cavanaugh, author of Beyond My Imagination: How Music Changes Our Lives and Retailer's Guide to Merchant Services: From Storefront to Internet. Gail was one of Dellani's first guests and it's great to have her on again.
jim-hughesNew to the show is Jim Hughes, author of the self-help marriage guide, C Through Marriage. Welcome to the show, Jim.

The show airs TODAY, December 28 at 4 PM Eastern time (3 Central, 2 Mountain, 1 Pacific.)

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

I Love Dialogue from Savage Heart - Historical Romance by Dellani

Savage Heart is the sequel to Indian Summer that several people have been anticipating for way too long. I keep telling myself I'll finish it, but I haven't yet. My friend, Gwen, has been patient with me, but she's anxious for the book to be finished so that she can read it. “I wanna know what happened to that Indian man!” Here's a taste, Gwen (and others)

Sailfish stirred up the fire and started water boiling and Meli still hadn't called him. Concerned about her, he left the fire, walking to her position. She squatted by the tree, pants at her ankles, strangely unmoving.
"Help," she said in a small, tight voice.
In front of her and slightly to her left, a snake reared its head, hissing at her. Its tail rattled, showing its displeasure.
With a swift movement, Sailfish grabbed it behind the head, breaking its neck. Dead snake dangling from his right hand, he held out the left to help her up. Embarrassed to be caught without her pants, she tried every way she could think of to stand up without him seeing her nudity.
Smirking, Sailfish kindly averted his eyes, still holding out his hand. "You should have checked the brush before squatting," he told her as he lifted her to her feet.
"Sorry. We had dogs at home. Snakes weren't often a problem, and certainly not by the latrine."
"Next time, check."
"Next time I'll know to." She smiled her thanks, blushing.
The blood tinging her cheeks made a dusky pink when it mixed with her cafe au lait complexion. It was a pretty shade, he noted in passing. Much the same, rich color as the petals of the roses outside the Governor's home.
"I have seen naked women before, little one," he remarked casually, trying to put her at ease.
"But no man has seen me naked," she countered, lifting her chin defiantly.
Smiling, Sailfish nodded acceptance of that remark.
"What are you cooking?" Meli's eyes sparkled happily at the prospect of food.
"Rattlesnake," he held up his victim. It was nearly as long as he was tall.
Shuddering, Meli squatted on the ground by the fire, warming her hands. "It is any good?"
"It is the way I fix it."
Taking it aside, he cleaned his kill with his knife. He cooked the snake over the coals, splitting equally with her. She ate hungrily, eyes glittering with appreciation. Smacking her lips, she looked around for more. Finding none, she contented herself with a blade of grass to chew on. Placing it between her teeth, she grinned at him.
"It was tasty. You're a good cook. I'm a good cook too. One day I'll fix a meal for you."
"A man on his own learns to feed himself." He shrugged as he rose to wash the dishes.
"I'll do that," she got to her feet, hardly seeming to mind the cuts and scratches.
Limping only slightly, she washed everything, drying them with tufts of grass. Presenting him the clean dishes, Meli smiled, her green eyes catching the morning light off the water.
"Thank you again. You saved my life. Twice."
"You're welcome. We need to get moving if we're to reach St. Augustine."
"St. Augustine? I've never been there, but I hear it's a wonderful place. Is it amazing?"
Meli walked backwards, facing him as he moved slowly along. Her short legs took two paces to his one. Shortening his stride, he tossed his long hair over his shoulder. Meli's eyes traveled the length and breadth of his body, taking in details from the decorative long hair, to his tattooed torso and long, moccasin covered feet.
"It is a town. Exciting if you've never seen one."
"Only a town or two in the Carolinas, but from a distance."
"You're English?" It was hard to keep the displeasure from his voice. His run ins with Englishmen of late had left a bad taste in his mouth.
Meli looked as revolted as he at the aspersion. "Mon Dieu, non! Papa was a slave from Jamaica. Mama was French and Indian. My brothers, sisters and I were all born free," she stated proudly.
Sailfish had to admit that given her lineage, claiming her freedom was very important. Having never been enslaved, he could only imagine how much more she treasured her freedom than he did. Although her father was a slave, her mother was free, making them free at birth.
"You're very fortunate. Many can't say the same."
"You're a slave yourself," she said in that oddly perceptive way she had.
"I am a free man of the River People," he countered angrily.
"Slave isn't the right word." Meli thought a moment, considering carefully. "You're trapped. Your heart is captive even if your body is free."
He glared at her, his dark eyes full of hurt and anger. Saying nothing, he lengthened his stride, pulling ahead of her so she had to trot to catch up. Gasping for breath after only a few yards, she doubled over.
"Wait. Wait!" Hands on knees, head drooping, she gasped hoarsely.
Sailfish stopped, waiting impatiently for Meli to catch her breath and join him. He slowed down again, knowing that if he pushed her, she'd never make it and they would camp another night or he'd be carrying her. Neither prospect made him very happy, nor did her penetrating manner.
They walked a long time in silence. Finally, Meli broke it by speaking as if there hadn't been an hour long gap.
"I upset you. I'm sorry."
Her fingers, strangely cool, brushed his bare arm sending a shiver up his spine. He shrugged again, unwilling to trust his voice.
"She's in town?"
Glaling over his shoulder at her, Sailfish walked on without answering. Meli stopped, hands on hips, yelling at him.
"Where I come from, when someone asks you a question, you answer them."
"Where I come from," he tossed over his shoulder. "People don't ask such rude and impertinent questions."
A stick hit him squarely in the back of the head. Turning, to meet the attack, he crouched, his hand going to his knife. Meli stood behind him, hands on her hips in the same pose. Except to throw the stick, she hadn't moved.
"My legs hurt. I need to rest."
Sailfish strode over to her, standing with his toes touching hers, leaning over menacingly. He was nearly two feet taller than she. Meli looked up at him, her glare meeting his.
"Don't ever do that again." His tone was menacing, his voice deep.
"How else do I get your attention? You ignore me when I speak!"
© 2016 Dellani Oakes

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas from Dellani Oakes

I wanted to wish you all a Merry Christmas, and give you a little teaser from my sci-fi novel, The Maker Book 3 in the Lone Wolf series. The crew of the Flotilla and Hannibal have been gone from known space for nearly four years. In that time, Chairman Emmelia Spenser has missed Captain Ben Drexel, who protected her from Riley and his power hungry moves. It's Christmas Eve and she misses him more than ever.

Gazing at the clock on the wall of her lavish living room, Emmelia Spenser, Chairman of the Mining Guild, watched the hands creep toward midnight. Drinking a silent toast to absent friends, she tried not to cry.
"Oh, Ben," she whispered to the air, "Where are you tonight and what are you doing? Are you thinking of me as I think of you?"
She rose, walking to the window of her penthouse apartment, high on top of the Mining Guild Tower. The tropical setting seemed incongruous to the occasion. Instead of snowy slopes, she gazed into the crystal clear ocean. Lost in its depths, she sighed.
Tonight she'd been obligated by her position, to host an expensive party for all the somebodies in the Mining Guild. Emmelia had been the perfect hostess, paying extravagant and insincere compliments to the hideous wife of the head of the Miner's Consortium. All the while harboring unkind thoughts that the woman looked more like a troll than a lady of wealth and substance.
All the board members were present, their trophy wives in tow. She couldn't keep track of them any more. They all looked alike: blonde from a bottle, boobs by design, pouty lips, long legs and tiny little brains. They dripped furs, jewels, gold, platinum and other choice tidbits given them by their filthy rich husbands. Usually, there was a new one every other year and they all had names like Buffy or Tippy or Missy.
Emmelia hadn't been alone at her party, of course. There were any number of eligible men willing to escort the most powerful woman in the Mining Guild to a posh soirĂ©e. The one tonight, Brett, had was smarter, handsomer, better put together than most—but he wasn't Ben. But few men could measure up to Benjamin Drexel, the former Marine Captain. He'd stolen her heart nearly four years ago when Wil sent him on assignment to protect her from Riley.
Brett had made the expected advances. Emmelia had repulsed them until she had too much champagne to drown her sorrows, then she gave in. He was several cuts above the average hanger-on, but he had to compete with the memory of Ben.
She had hoped that Ben would be back from his mission by now, or at the very least she would hear from him. But there were no messages and she was still alone.
"Tomorrow," she whispered hopefully, "I'll hear from Ben."
A final sip of champagne and she made her way to bed, where Brett slept, looking for all the world like a child. She wondered how old he really was, twenty-five, twenty-six? Did it matter? He kept the bed warm, didn't drool and didn't snore. Slipping quietly back into bed, she curled up next to him, facing the door, crying gently.
Brett must have sensed her presence, perhaps even heard her crying. He rolled over, putting his arm protectively around her, cuddling up behind her, breath warm on her neck. Tears fell anew, as she remembered how Ben did the same thing.
"Tomorrow," she thought as she fell asleep, "Tomorrow—"

© 2016 Dellani Oakes

Thursday, December 22, 2016

What a Character! Wil VanLipsig of the Lone Wolf Series

Did you ever meet a man so spooky, he's sexy as hell? Did a glance from his dark eyes make you shiver? Then maybe you met Wil VanLipsig from my sci-fi series. He's been described as dangerously handsome, wickedly attractive and (dare I say) smokin' hot. Of course, the smoking part could apply to the devastation and waste he leaves behind him on the battlefield.
Wil is a complex character—at once dangerous and deadly, as well as honorable and protective. He's been an assassin, but only took jobs where he knew for a fact that the target needed killing. He's even gone so far as to protect a target from another killer.
Though he can calculate the percentages of casualties of a battle with a quiet efficiency, he does his best to keep them as low as possible. He doesn't believe in wanton loss of life. The Galactic Marines require the study of his battle plans for all officers in training. A General once said, “VanLipsigs plans are a Symphony of Destruction. As carefully orchestrated as a concerto, he maneuvers the pieces of his chaotic chess set.”
By some miracle, Wil has lived through and walked away from, more battles than most men see in ten lifetimes. Some would say he's blessed, but he's convinced the Devil himself keeps him alive, afraid that if Wil dies, he'll kill Satan and take over.
Despite his brutal background, Wil loves deeply. He's terrible at expressing it in words, but does his best to show his love in other ways. He is generous, protective, cold, calculating, manipulative, loving, gregarious, and introverted. He is a walking, talking contradiction who adheres to a code of honor that very few people can understand.
One thing that everyone can agree on about Wil VanLipsig, it's best to stay on his good side, because his enemies have a very short life expectancy. If you see him coming, it's already too late.
© 2017 Dellani Oakes

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

First Meeting from Sierra by Dellani Oakes

Heaving a sigh, Sierra sat and stared out the small window on the miniature plane. She barely glanced up as a large, male body filled the empty space between her and the aisle. He struggled a moment with his tray table, flopped it down and set something on it. Sierra caught the heavenly aroma of coffee. Inhaling deeply, she smiled wishing it was hers. The covered cup toppled slightly and she grabbed it instinctively as her seat mate swore softly.
Laughing, she moved his cup to her tray and looked up for the first time. "Can I help you with something?"
"Not unless you can make the compartment bigger. There's this huge orange bag in here that feels like it's full of concrete."
"Not mine," she grinned. "I had to move across the aisle to stow mine. There should be room."
Smiling his thanks, he turned and shoved his bag in next to hers. His expensive carry-on lay side by side with her knockoff Prada.
"You two behave now," he chided the unwary luggage and slammed the compartment shut. He dropped in his seat with a grin, extending his hand. Sierra put the coffee in it and he laughed loudly.
"I wasn't asking for that back, I wanted to introduce myself. David Anders. Thanks for the help."
"Sierra McLaughlin. You're welcome."
David took the coffee with his left hand and shook with his right. His grip was sure and strong. Sierra couldn't help admiring his expressive blue eyes, shoulder length sun streaked blond hair and rolling muscles under his tanned skin. He looked like a surfer, but was dressed like a golfer in a yellow Polo shirt and white, blue and yellow Madras plaid shorts. Only his flip-flops gave him away.
"You live up here?" he asked casually as he set his coffee down.
"Yes. I'm heading to Daytona to visit my brother. I may be going to Stetson, so I'm touring the college this week too."
"I just graduated from Southern," he remarked with a flip of his hair. "I can't wait to get back home. I haven't been on my board since spring break. I'm going through withdrawal."
He laughed and stretched. His shirt slid up and his shorts down slightly, revealing an amazing set of abs. Sierra tried not to stare, but wow!
"What are you majoring in?" he asked as he took a sip of his coffee. Making a face, he slid it away from him with a curse. "Gah! Too sweet! What was I thinking? You want it? My first sip, I swear. I'm free of all major diseases and I don't backwash." He offered her the coffee.
Normally she would have declined, but she was desperate. "Sure," she took the cup. "I didn't get mine this morning. My alarm didn't go off in time. My stupid roommate reset it!"
"Ugh! Roommates bite! Mine's an idiot. Another reason I'm glad to be going home. He washed clothes last night. Which is great, only he threw his new Red Sox T-shirt in and everything turned a delicate shade of pink. This was all I had clean." He indicated his preppy clothing with disdain. "It will make my step mom happy. She thinks I dress like a slob. Which I do because it bugs her. How's the coffee?"
"Great! It's perfect. I like it extra light and sweet."
"I fixed it for you then. I like it medium on both. That's sweet enough to curl my hair!" He winked. His thick, blond hair was already curly. "So we got sidetracked," he grinned and stretched long and slow. "What's your major?" His clothing danced up and down again.
Sierra almost choked on the coffee as he exposed his fine musculature. "Abs," she mumbled. "Art," she said more loudly. "Emphasis in photography. I draw and paint too."
"Really? Cool. Do you do still lifes or what?"
"I like doing people more." She realized how that might sound and blushed, mentally kicking herself.
He glanced at her sideways and winked. "So do I. But I don't go around loudly admitting it."
Sierra giggled, trying to hide her self-consciousness behind the cup of coffee.
"I'm sorry." David said softly. "I've embarrassed you."
"Oh, no," she admitted. "I do that just fine on my own."
"So, are you a portrait photographer?" David eased away from the embarrassment without a backward glance.
Gratefully, Sierra answered him. "Not really. Portraits are fine, but I prefer capturing people in candid shots. Especially when they are doing something they love. I have some amazing shots of people rock climbing, horseback riding, skiing—oh, and surfers. I took those during spring break."
"You weren't down here during break, were you? Well, by down here, I mean Daytona. See? I'm already picturing myself at home." He chuckled and pulled his feet out of the aisle as people passed.
"Yes. I was in Daytona, Port Orange and New Smyrna taking pictures. Why?"
"It would be funny if I was in any of them."
"I have prints. Hang on to this, would you?" She handed him the coffee as she dug in her bag.
Her purse was a real Prada, a gift from her grandmother. It looked more like a pink diaper bag, but it was great for traveling.
She grabbed a small album from the bottom of the bag. "I've got to put together a portfolio tomorrow and Sunday. I go in on Monday to see the dean."
David took the pictures as she took back the coffee. He opened the book and grinned. "Great shot of the Inlet," he commented happily.
"I like to tell a story with the pictures. I took a few landscape shots when I got there."
He flipped through three more. The next picture was of four surfers in silhouette, the sun and water in front of them. One was bending over putting on his wet suit. His tight ass was nearly center of the frame. The guy to his right was profile, looking down at him. The other two were checking the waves, eyes shielded against the glare. Their boards were planted upright in the sand.
David chuckled, pointing to the ass shot. "Very nice composition. What's this part of the story?" He mimicked a female voice. "I got to the beach and saw this great ass and had to take a picture?"
Sierra grabbed for her book, but he held it away from her, out into the aisle.
"He has a bathing suit on!"
"Yeah, but still! I didn't think Stu had that good an ass. Mine's better."
"You know him?"
"Yeah. I know all of them." He pointed to each in turn from left to right. "Tom, Stu's ass, Brent and yours truly."
© 2016 Dellani Oakes

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Editing - An Author's Nightmare Part 2

When I first started writing, I thought I had to include everything. If the character was going to walk out a door, I had to include him walking to the door, turning the knob and pulling it open. In addition to all that business, he had to walk through and close it behind him. Is it any wonder that Indian Summer was 98,266 words before I edited it back?
Admittedly, I've gotten pretty good at editing. Probably, because my first books need a lot of help. I've been working on The Maker, book 3 of my sci-fi series. It started at almost 400 pages. I don't even remember the word count, probably close to 180,000. It is now whittled back to just under 300 pages and a word count of 120,000. My question for myself and my editor, is that still too much? Book cost is based on page count. I don't want to price myself out of the market, but there's a lot that has to happen in this novel. It's pivotal and introduces new characters who are integral to the plot later. It also introduces and ties up some sub-plots.
I've done the hacking and slashing part – that's where I medically remove all the deadwood. I print out the manuscript and read through it, being brutal. Do I need this scene? No. Should I cut this one? Yes. I sometimes refer to this process as the Slash and Burn Phase. One thing I've learned over the years – save everything. Well, if it's a word or two here or there, I don't, but the big, hulking bits I remove, all go into a file and I hang onto them. I never know if I'll need that information after all, or will use it in something else. There have been a couple times that I have done that.
Looking through my book files, I can tell which books are the oldest, because I have dozens of permutations of the file. I have some that are so old, they go back to the days when I was using Word Perfect as my word processing program.
I have discs full of files dating back to the early 2000s when I first started writing full time. These are the books that require the most heavy editing. I have learned a lot over the years. When I go back and read some of my earliest books, like my sci-fi series, I wonder how I could ever have written like that. However, there are some scenes that really came out well and I'm still very proud of them.
One of the best scenes in the book (in my opinion) is where the four main characters are in the depths of the planet, pursuing an escaped prisoner. The inside of the planet is riddled with tunnels and conduits. They get chased by a group of angry, dark skinned men and head into one of the metal conduits. The floor gives out and the heroine falls into a bottomless pit. Her husband reaches for her, but isn't quick enough to save her. All he can do is watch her fall.
Not knowing if she's alive or dead, he returns to their ship, nearly helpless with grief. He can't believe she's dead and wants to form a rescue party and go after her, but he's unable to formulate a plan. For a seasoned warrior, who's survived more campaigns and planned more missions than ten other men, it's horrific to find that he can't even think clearly.
I read through that scene a couple nights ago and had myself in tears. I got the emotions just right, I found the words to express how bereft he felt. I described the hollowness in his soul without her. I sat there, mentally patting myself on the back, saying, “Yeah, you nailed it.”
Editing may be a pain in the neck, but when the book is done and finally published, I can look at it and say to myself, “Yeah, you nailed it.”

Dellani Oakes is the author of 12 published novels and over 100 more which haven't been published yet. She's a Blog Talk Radio host on the Red River Radio Network. She's also former A.P. English teacher and journalist.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Red River Radio Presents Dellani's Tea Time with Elaine Littau, Gerald Darnell and M. Pepper Langlinais

As friends and family prepare for the holidays, our authors are preparing to sell their books. Whether paperback, hardcover or electronic, books make great gifts! Our guests have some of the best, so we hope you'll check them out.

After too long a time, we welcome back Elaine Littau, author of Luke's Legacy, Running to Her Future, The Eyes of a Stranger and many more. We're delighted to have her with us again.

Also returning is M. Pepper Langlinais, author of The Fall and Rise of Peter Stoller, Manifesting Destiny, The Mystery of the Last Line and many more. We're pleased to have her back.

Last, but not least, we welcome an author for the first time. Gerald Darnell, author of The Price of Beauty in Strawberry Land and other Carson Reno Mystery Series, Please Don't Wake Me Until It's Time to Go, and he is featured in the Mystery Gone Mad boxed set.

Friday, December 09, 2016

I'm Feeling a Bit Like Scrooge

As much as I love Christmas, I've come to dread the holiday season. Starting with Thanksgiving preparation, I begin to stress over the meal. Afterward, I start planning what to give as Christmas gifts and when I'm going to put a package in the mail for my daughter's family. Also, her birthday is a week before Christmas, and I have to find a present for her.
Things I used to find absolutely imperative every holiday season: sending cards, writing a newsy letter, decorating the house, preparing holiday treats— They have become a pain in my butt and I simply don't have the energy for them. I have serious allergies, and almost always have a sinus infection going on. I also have developed asthma over the years, so it's difficult to go out. Too many scents out there to plague a sensitive nose or a delicate set of lungs. Not to mention, my son has to use our truck for his job—he works 5:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. This makes getting out difficult.
I don't mean to sound like I'm whining, but dammit, I feel like it! Okay, getting worked up takes too much energy, so I will quietly state that I don't give a shit about doing it up for Christmas. I like presents, but I hate shopping. I love finding the perfect gift, but I loath trying to decide what that may be. I enjoy the meal, but as I do the bulk of the cooking, it's a pain in the ass. I like spending time with family and friends, but right now, I'd rather spend my time writing and editing, than actually communicating with anyone.
If you're like me, and you dread the holiday season (though you really like cookies and other tasty treats) I have a suggestion for you. Go through the list of folks you have to buy gifts for, and buy them books. Yes, I know, not everyone is a reader. But if you can capture the one thing they find appealing, you've just given them the perfect gift. Cool thing is, even without a Kindle, they can read an Amazon book on any phone, tablet or computer by downloading the free app.
I realize that not everyone likes the same books, so I encourage you to explore some of my suggestions below. These names are by no means the only books I'm recommending. No one paid me to do this, no one twisted my arm to get me to include them. I'm listing people whose books I have read personally, and enjoyed. They aren't in any particular order, mostly just train of thought. 

First of all, my books. Dellani Oakes writes historical (retro) romance, romantic suspense, contemporary romance, sci-fi and fantasy. To Buy Dellani's Books 

Karen Vaughan is one of my favorite authors. She writes light hearted mysteries. To Buy Karen's books 

Kenneth Weene writes a variety of genres, which will appeal to a lot of readers. To Buy Ken's Books

Amanda Thrasher writes delightful books about fairies, but she also has a hard hitting anti-bullying book that is not to miss. To Buy Amanda's Books 

Ruth Hays writes magical, epic fantasy that gets the heart pumping. To Buy Ruth's Books 

Heather Poinsett Dunbar writes fantasy, that's a bit on the dark side. To Buy Heather's Books 

William Beck writes political thrillers that set your pulse racing from beginning to end.To Buy William's Books

S. A. Bailey writes, what he calls, redneck noir. Think Mickey Spillane with an east Texas spin. To Buy Seth's Books

Mark David Gerson also writes a wide variety of books. From learning to write, to mystical fantasy, he's sure to appeal. To Buy Mark David's Books 

Jo Ramsey writes wonderfully insightful stories for teens who don't fit into the normal mold. To Buy Jo's Books

Rowena Cherry writes sci-fi that carries you into space. Swords clang as a royal alien race tries to out maneuver one another. To Buy Rowena's Books 

Gary D. Henry writes in many genres from retro romance to horror. To Buy Gary's Books

Suzette Vaughn mostly writes romance, but she has other books as well. Sure to appeal to a wide number of readers. To Buy Suzette's Books

J. Conrad Guest – sci-fi, romance, biography, memoir...the list goes on and on. To Buy J. Conrad's Books

Rico Austin from a lighthearted children's book, to memoirs, with a stop off at Graceland to visit The King, Rico has it. To Buy to Buy Rico's Books

Stephanie Osborn's Displaced Detective series brings Sherlock Holmes into the modern age. She also has fantastic sci-fi books that are a must read. To Buy Stephanie's Books

Rachel Rueben's book, Hag, is a wonderfully poignant look at teen life and the problems some face. Rachel also has some great How-To books for authors. To Buy Rachel's Books

Marta Moran Bishop is another versatile author. Her books are mostly for children or young adults, but they are great for adults too. To Buy Marta's Books

Barbara Ehrentreu The same can be said of Barbara's books. Though geared toward teens, they are an enjoyable read for adults. To Buy Barbara's Books

Fran Lewis has books in so many genres, I can't name them all. Very approachable, they are sure to entertain. To Buy Fran's Books

J.D. Holiday's books for children are cleverly written and beautifully illustrated by the author. To Buy J.D.'s Books

Dianna Graveman's books will appeal to those who like history. She has wonderful books on a variety of subjects. To Buy Dianna's Books

Whit McClendon's fantasy novels are cleverly crafted and full of action.To Buy Whit's Books

Janet Morris has been a favorite author of mine since the Eighties. If you like sci-fi, fantasy or historical fiction, Janet has something for you. To Buy Janet's Books

Viv Drewa writes mystical mysteries with a hoot of a hero—an owl! To Buy Viv's Books

Kemberlee Shortland writes romance with an Irish flavor. To Buy Kemberlee'sBooks 

I will continue to update and add to this list as I think of new people. Share this with your friends! Above all, have a Happy Chrismahanukwanzakah! Dellani

The List Goes On

I started going through my past reviews to collect the names of more amazing authors, and I was boggled. So much so, I decided I can't link all these names, because it will take for ever. I will, however, list them under categories for you. Also, if you look at any of the monthly categories on the side, you will be able to access anything back to the day this blog started. These categories are very general. For more accurate designations, check them out on Amazon or read my reviews. A couple other reviewers used to post there, so check out their author picks as well!

Romance, Erotica, Romantic Suspense:
Claire Collins
Mairead Walpole
Margay Roberge
Sherrie Hansen
Jerrica Knight-Catania
Diana Duncan
Gracen Miller
JP Lane
Bernadette Gardner
Richelle Mead
Elizabeth Haysmount
Olivia Jaymes
Vella Day
Lindsay Downs

Mystery, Thriller:
Norm Brown
Pat Bertram
Christine Husom
Michael Tabman
Michelle McGriff
Mickey Hoffman
TL Jones
Steven Hildreth
Jean Henry Mead
Larry D. Thompson
Lee Kelley
Ken Farmer

Fantasy, Science Fiction:
Barb Caffrey
Robert C. Roman
Katherine Tomlinson
Barbara Custer & Tom Johnson
Marie Bilodeau
S. Evan Townsend
Chantal Boudreau
L.A. James
Dwight Zimmerman

Paranormal, Horror:
Tim Greaton
Pauline Holyoak
CL Bevill
Rod Marsden

Children, Young Readers, Young Adult:
Jennifer Walker
Deanna Meyer
Anne Maro Alanina
Kai Strand
TL Wood
Linda Boyden
Ellen Feld
Lori Z. Scott
Cindy Springsteen
Sherrill S. Cannon
Daniel Ferry

Various Genres:
Michael Murphy
Karina Gioertz
Noah Baird
Marsha Casper Cook
Susan Winlaw
Anjuelle Floyd

Historical Fiction, Memoir:
Paulette Mahurin
Uvi Poznansky
Brian M. Hayden

Barbara Virag

Emma, Dangerous by Dellani Oakes – Part 7

Emma's in the hospital for the night, and Sam's allowed to stay with her. He asks Rosalee not to let her parents see her, unless she...