Friday, 10 March 2017

Spotlight and Author Interview: Cards From Khloe's Flower Shop by Isabella Louise Anderson

Click the above image to follow the book tour.

Cards From Khloe's Flower Shop
By: Isabella Louise Anderson
Released January 17, 2017
Chick Lit Goddess, LLC

As the owner of a successful florist shop, Khloe Harper trusts her instincts. She has a strong bond with her family and friends, but after being betrayed by her last love, she's kept herself at arms’ length from romance. When dashing entertainment attorney Derek Thomas walks into her store, Khloe’s interest is piqued. What at first seems like a business relationship quickly turns into romance, and Derek slowly plucks away the petals she’s been hiding behind. Just as Khloe lets down her guard, she discovers that Derek may not be worthy of her love after all.
Frumpy Connie Albright has a faux fascination with an imaginary man named Walt, thinking that by sending herself flowers from him she’ll feel less out-of-place with the “mean girls” she works with. When she comes face to face with her possible prince charming and thinking she might have a happy ending, when a truth is revealed, she wonders if she’ll ever have a Cinderella story.
A recently widowed senior, Gabby Lewis, isn't ready to give up on love—which means releasing herself from survivor's guilt and taking a chance on finding happiness and companionship again. After signing up for an online dating site for senior citizens, much to her surprise, she’s matched with Harry, an energetic and loving man, who quickly eases himself into her heart. Will Gabby take the leap of falling in love again, knowing it’s possible to have two loves of her life?
As each woman’s story develops through flowers and cards sent from Khloe's shop during the fall months, they begin to learn that love can only truly blossom when you trust your heart.

     AMAZON | B & N | KOBO

Finding Charlie splayed across the kitchen floor was the most horrifying thing Gabriella had ever experienced. After an ambulance rushed her husband to the hospital, she sat by his side day and night, trying to be strong, hoping for a miracle that he’d recover. Four days later, the machines he’d been hooked up to loudly shrieked, and Gabby quickly ran to get a nurse. In what seemed like seconds, her life of forty-five years was over, and Charlie was dead. Having no other family, Gabby was alone. Though, thanks to her friends and a lot of prayers, she was growing stronger each day.
Before leaving to meet her Scrabble group for the second-to-last game of the year, she put on her black wool coat and checked herself in the mirror. She hadn’t worn the coat in years, but it was no longer snug, due to her weight loss, while grieving Charlie. Not too shabby, she thought, admiring her thin figure. Then, with her purse over her shoulder and a sweet potato bourbon Bundt cake in her hands, she headed out.
After making the fifteen-minute drive to the nearby church where the group met every other Tuesday, Gabby parked the car and looked at the white brick building, hit by the memories she had there. Aside from Charlie’s funeral, getting married and signing up to be part of the Scrabble group were two of the great ones. She’d made so many wonderful friends within the church, too. Gabby didn’t know how she would have made it these past few months without the church services or her friends by her side; somehow she was surviving, which she took to be a blessing. Without allowing her eyes to get misty, she turned off the car, reached for the cake, walked up the small pathway to the church, and entered through the light blue double doors. It was time to play Scrabble.
The cake is served,” she told her friends as they each took a slice. Gabriella, the last one to sit at the square table, joined her friends Clara, Wilma, and Fern. “Well, what all did I miss?” she asked, reaching her hand into the silver bag that held the lettered Scrabble tiles.
I was telling Clara and Wilma about my grandchildren coming to visit over the holidays. Apparently, my grandson wants me to meet his new girlfriend,” Fern said. At sixty-five, the same age as Gabby, Fern was a retired teacher. Her curly white hair was cut short, and she wore gold-rimmed glasses, which she donned as more of a fashion statement than a tool to see. She’d been married to her husband, Bob, for thirty-four years, and had one son and two grandchildren. Fern’s family was her life. While at times she could be overly dramatic when she told stories, she was also one of the most honest friends Gabby had.
That should be fun,” Clara replied, taking the bag from Gabby.
Yes...I’m sure it will be,” she began, sounding hesitant. She placed her hands over her heart, adding, “I just don’t want him to get hurt again.”
We know you don’t,” Gabby said. “How did they meet?” Gabby looked at her tiles, switching them around to see if she could make any words with them, but all Gabby could spell with what she had was a four-letter word: l-o-v-e.
When Fern didn’t reply after a few moments, Gabby, Clara, and Wilma looked at her quizzically.
Oh, in a quite scandalous way,” Fern finally said in a whisper as she leaned in. “They met on the internet,” she said in a whisper, and then she shook her head. “I just can’t believe what this world’s coming to.”
Oh, it can’t be that bad,” Wilma said with a laugh. “After all, like I told y’all, that’s how Frank met his new wife, on one of those dating websites.” Like Fern and Clara, Gabby widened her eyes, and Wilma continued. “Oh, don’t be so shocked. After all, he worked in the computer industry. While our marriage failed, our friendship didn’t. Besides, I’ve gained another friend in his new wife, Lady Bell...”
You told us this before, but I forget. Is Lady Bell her real name?” Clara asked.
It sure is,” Wilma said with a nod as she placed the letters c-o-u- p-l-e on the board. “That’ll be twenty-two points,” she said to Gabby, who was keeping score.
Wilma was in her late fifties, worked part-time at a women’s clothing store, and had been married to Frank, her second husband, for eleven years. Two years ago, on a random day when Wilma took him his forgotten lunch to a construction site where he worked, she found him kissing a young brunette in the trailer. Instead of confronting him, she furiously drove home, thinking about how she would conduct herself that evening, and if she would confront him.
The day I found out, I had Frank’s favorite dinner—chicken- fried steak and mashed potatoes—ready for him on their dining room table, then asked, ‘Have a good day, dear?’ and that’s when he placed his fork down and admitted everything, which explained what he’d been doing on the computer when he should’ve been in bed with me.” Gasps echoed around the table, but she shook her head.
Believe me, I know how bad it sounds.” Wilma raised her shoulders, shrugging it off. “Anyway, a few weeks later, we parted ways on friendly terms, and when Frank introduced me to Lady Bell, surprisingly, we became friends.” She held up her hands, as all three of the other women began to speak. “And yes, while to some, my relationship with my ex-husband and his new wife might seem odd, I don’t care what people think. All three of us are very happy.” She laughed.
It was finally Gabby’s turn to play. “L-o-v-e, and I get eleven points,” she said, writing down her score. She took the bag from Wilma, reached for four more tiles, and looked up at her friends. “Would any of you try online dating?” When more gasps came from around the table, she chuckled, raising her hands in defense. “Okay, I’ll take that as a no.”
She sat back in her chair and looked at the word she just played. Since the love of her life was gone, it saddened her to think about not experiencing that feeling anymore. For the past few weeks, Gabby had started to wonder if there was more to life than sitting at home alone each night, studying the Scrabble dictionary and watching The Tonight Show.
What about you, would you do it, Gabby?” asked Clara. The youngest of the group at thirty-three, Clara was also the quietest one of the bunch. After meeting her at a church service, Gabby invited Clara into the Scrabble group. At first Clara was hesitant, but Gabby promised her it was just about a few girls getting together to have fun, build their vocabularies, and indulge in a dessert or two. Clara said she’d think about it, and to Gabby’s surprise she showed up the following Tuesday. Fern and Wilma instantly took a liking to her, accepting her with open arms.

Isabella grew up with a book in her hand, and to this day nothing has changed. She focuses her time on featuring other writers on her blog, Chick Lit Goddess, along with organizing Goddess Book Tours, and is a member of the Romance Writers of America
She lives in Dallas with her husband, enjoys spicy Mexican food, margaritas, gin on the rocks (with a splash of lime). She loves spending time with family and friends and cheering on the Texas Rangers. Not only is Isabella an author, she’s also a Scentsy consultant and hoarder.
Isabella is the author of The Right Design and Cards From Khloe’s Flower Shop. Her short story, “Meet Me Under the Mistletoe,” was featured in Simon & Fig’s Christmas anthology, Merry & Bright. She’s currently working on another book.

Describe yourself in five words or less:
Stubborn, messy, creative, passionate, and strong.

If you had a theme song, what would it be?
Great question! I’d have to say I have several, but if I had to pick just one, it would be “You Look So Good In Love” by George Strait.

What do you like to do when you aren't writing?
Spend time with family and friends, read, watch baseball (Go Rangers), and jot down notes for my current WIP

What types of scenes are your most favorite to write?
The emotional ones! I love when I get so into a scene, and I start to cry. There’s something about it that makes it seem so real…and with “Cards From Khloe’s Flower Shop,” I cried most with Gabby’s character.

What 2 things should readers know about you?
1) I’m very shy, 2) I’m OCD and if my handwriting doesn’t look pretty, I have to erase it and redo it (I know, it’s crazy and a waste of time, but it’s the only way I can outline—something I can’t do on a computer—it has to be pencil and paper).

Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?
All of the stories I’ve written are a spin from my real life. For example, in “The Right Design,” Palm Beach was the main setting because my family has a family home there (though, I’m not a beach person like the main character). As for “Cards From Khloe’s Flower Shop,” I’ve always loved receiving and sending flowers. I’ve also wanted own a flower shop, so this book specifically is based on what my life would like if I did.

Can you tell us about your upcoming book?
I’m currently writing a country contemporary romance, and I love it. This book is the most real book I’ve written since it’s based on a combination of reality and fiction.

Rafflecopter Giveaway ($25.00 Amazon eGift Card)

New Release Spotlight & Review: Starlight Bridge by Debbie Mason

Author: Debbie Mason
Series: Harmony Harbor, #2
On Sale: February 28, 2017
Publisher: Forever
Mass Market: $7.99 USD
eBook: $5.99 USD

A second chance for romance...

Hidden in Graystone Manor is a book containing all the dark secrets of Harmony Harbor, and Ava DiRossi is determined to find it. No one—especially not her ex-husband, Griffin Gallagher—can ever discover what really tore her life apart all those years ago. With Griffin back in town, it's more important than ever that she find the book before someone else does. Because her ex is still angry with her for leaving him. And he still has no idea Ava never stopped loving him...

Ava is no longer the vibrant, happy woman Griffin had once loved and married, and he would do anything to bring back the sparkle to her brilliant green eyes. But what's never changed are the sexy sparks of attraction between Ava and Griffin, and he won't give her up again without a fight. He knows there's the real possibility of a future together...if the truth doesn't burn the bridge between them forever.

Walmart     Target      Amazon     Barnes & Noble      Books-A-Million     Google Play     iBooks     Indiebound     Kobo

Returning to Greystone Manor in Starlight Bridge, the second book in this delightful series lived up to my expectations as we catch up on all the shenanigans in Harmony Harbor.

Ava DiRossi has barely existed these past few years never mind lived. With a broken heart, she's juggled work with caring for her ornery, sick father. Unfortunately, there's little time for herself. The result...she's exhausted from working and not eating. She's a shadow of her former self. When her ex-husband returns to visit the Manor, it re-ignites feelings and desires that never went away but feels embarrassment and shame when he takes pity on her. Only, the spirit of Greystone is keen for them to reconcile, but will secrets of the past become uncovered to spoil the plans?

Shocked, Griffin Gallagher's reaction to seeing his ex-wife at Greystone Manor. She looks thin, tired and down. However, the sight of her reminds him that Ava DiRossi is the only woman he has truly loved and memories of their life before it abruptly ended come crashing back.

The second chance romance between Griffin and Ava is adorable, although the way to their eventual happy ever after is rocky and chaotic. The drama of their reconciliation is wrapped around a fun scheme to help and promote the Manor. However, with deception and revenge on the menu served courtesy of the new 'French' chef, priorities are constantly shifting. Plus the added complication of Griffin's second ex-wife turning up with life changing news. The result? A delicious, highly entertaining story of two people trying to rebuild a new relationship together...against the odds!

The delightful secondary characters add humour to the proceedings as we catch-up with the likeable bunch we were first introduced to in book one. There's never a dull moment as Ms Mason keeping us on our toes in this beautifully written action-packed tale.

Starlight Bridge is a standalone novel, however, to fully appreciate the dynamics of Greystone Manor, in particularly ghostly Colleen...I highly recommend reading Mistletoe Cottage first. You won't be disappointed.

***arc generously received courtesy of the publisher Forever Romance***

She sensed Griffin rising to his feet and heard him placing his mug on the desk. And then he was there, crouched in front of her. He took her mug, setting it on the floor before he gently smoothed the rough pads of his fingers over her cheek. “You know it kills me to see you cry.”
Still?” she murmured without looking at him.
Yeah, looks like,” he said, sounding as though the admission cost him.
A tiny flicker of hope ignited inside her. She smothered it, unwilling to put herself in the position of being disappointed. She didn’t think her heart could withstand another blow today.
I know you did more than smooth the way for my father, Griffin. I don’t believe Gino’s monthly pension checks and insurance will come close to covering the cost. I need to know what I owe you. I doubt I can pay it all at once though, so maybe we could come up with a monthly payment plan?”
At her suggestion, a muscle pulsed in his clenched jaw, and his eyes narrowed. She was familiar with that look. It didn’t bode well for her repayment plan. And maybe because of that small hope that refused to be denied, she raised her hand to trace his stubbled jaw with her finger. “You know that look always annoyed me,” she said, thinking back to how long it had been since she’d touched him this way.
Yeah, and you always knew how to get rid of it. Never could hold out against you for long.” His eyes darkened as though remembering their standoffs always ended in bed.
What are we doing?” she whispered, the heat in his eyes weakening her resolve. She had to know if it was just her imagination. She’d deal with the consequences later.
The study door swung open, and her cousin rushed in. “Ava, are—Oh, I…” Sophie’s gaze moved from Griffin to Ava. “Am I interrupting?”
Griffin rose to his feet, and Ava didn’t know if it was relief or regret she saw on his face.
He glanced at his watch. “I better get going. I have to meet up with Sully.”
Ah, so it had been relief after all, she thought, fighting to keep the disappointment from showing on her face.
Sophie smiled, stepping in front of Griffin as he walked to the door. “Welcome home,” she said, giving him a hug. “We’re so glad you took the job.”
Job?” Ava asked, and there it was again, hope. Only this time it came out in her voice.
Griffin turned with his hand on the doorknob. “Sully offered me a job with the Coast Guard. Thought it was about time I came home.” He held her gaze. “We’ll talk later. If you need me, call.”
Sophie stared at her, openmouthed. “He…You.” Sophie found her voice and looked from the door to Ava. “What did I just interrupt?”
I’m not sure,” she murmured, glad she was sitting, otherwise her legs might have given out.



Debbie Mason is the USA Today bestselling author of the Christmas, Colorado and Harmony Harbor series. Her books have been praised for their "likable characters, clever dialogue and juicy plots" (RT Book Reviews). When she isn't writing or reading, Debbie enjoys spending time with her very own real-life hero, three wonderful children, two adorable grandbabies, and a yappy Yorkie named Bella in Ontario, Canada.

Website     Facebook     Twitter      Pinterest     Goodreads

Website     Facebook     Twitter     Instagram     Pinterest