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Ingredients? tick…Magic? hmm

The Magic Ingredient Book Cover The Magic Ingredient
(A Bar Harbor Holiday Novel)
Lindy Miller
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
ROSEWIND BOOKS
Publication date: October 13th 2020

The end of summer is approaching, but even at the height of Bar Harbor’s tourist season, Eve Silver is having a hard time keeping enough money in the bank to sustain the family business. Her only hope of paying past due bills is to win the catering bid for the town’s upcoming Harvest Happening Festival. Otherwise, it’ll be lights out for Mount Desserts & Tea by Christmas.

Widower Jeff Parish is moving with his twelve-year-old daughter, Candy, from Manhattan to Maine with one goal: starting over. When sparks fly between Jeff and Eve as the town readies for the annual harvest festival, Candy wishes she had a love potion to help her dad fall in love again.

Will Eve be able to save Mount Desserts & Tea—and open her heart to Jeff—by the most bewitching night of the year? It’ll take a lot of love, a little bit of luck … and just a pinch of magic.

EXCERPT – THE MAGIC INGREDIENT (BAR HARBOR HOLIDAY SERIES, #1)

BY LINDY MILLER

Part of eating a cupcake was the experience, and in Eve’s opinion, a little extra frosting on your face made it all the more gratifying. Her mouth filled with the taste of vanilla, chocolate, and marshmallow, all of the flavors intermingling just as she’d planned. Still, something seemed off. It wasn’t enough to toss the batch out, but in Eve’s opinion, the recipe hadn’t quite reached perfection.

Eve swallowed, wiping away the frosting from her nose. “It’s not perfect.”

“It’s incredible,” Jeff countered before he shoved the rest of the cupcake into his mouth.

He had a dollop of frosting on his nose, which made Eve smile despite her frustration at the recipe. “I don’t know if I believe your verdict, but at least you didn’t call it glitzy.”

Jeff mumbled something that sounded like idtellinguidperfek around the mouthful of pastry.

“Something is missing. Something small, a flavor that isn’t quite there. It’s not major, but enough that I notice.” Eve wiped her hands on a dishcloth and leaned against the counter, crossing her arms over her chest in frustration. “I don’t know why I can’t get it right. Maybe I’m not as great a baker as I think I am. It shouldn’t take so many tries to get a recipe correct. Not if you know what you’re doing.”

Jeff wiped his face and leveled his gaze at Eve as he stepped closer. “I don’t think that’s true at all. You’re a fantastic baker. You’re a fantastic lot of things.”

He was so close now Eve could smell his scent—musky and warm, with notes of pine and sandalwood. An inviting smell. Eve wondered how she’d never noticed it before. Then again, the more she felt drawn to Jeff the more she’d tried to keep her distance, kind of like reaching her goal—one step forward, two back.

“Really?” she asked, hoping she sounded interested and not incredulous. She didn’t want to offend someone offering her a compliment, even if she didn’t believe it. “I try so hard and I feel like I come up short.”

“Doing everything on your own isn’t easy, and I can see how you might think that you’re failing, but you’re looking at the situation the wrong way.”

Eve shook her head and kept her eyes downcast, even when Jeff’s hand found her shoulder, sliding down to cup her upper arm. His touch sent a tingle down her flesh and she resisted the urge to look up.

“Is there another way?”

“Instead of focusing on what you’re not doing well, think of all the things you are amazing at. Try to see yourself as …”

He paused.

Eve wondered if he’d changed his mind about whatever it was he was going to say.

Jeff cleared his throat and started over. “Try to see yourself the way I see you. Like Candy does, and Doris and Annie. And Bapo, for what it’s worth.”

Eve snickered, despite herself. “You’re never going to get tired of ribbing him, are you?”

“Never.” Jeff’s hand slid further down her arm to rest on her elbow. “My point remains.”

The place where Jeff’s hand rested on her arm pulsed. “How do you all see me?”

“We see someone who works hard every single day, around the clock, never taking any time for herself. Who gives her all to everything she does, even when it seems impossible, and who makes everyone feel needed and wanted when she’s around simply by being there.” Jeff stepped in closer. His heat brushed up against her chest. “It isn’t about finding the perfect recipe for a new confection or keeping the family business around for another generation, Eve. It’s about you. You make Mount Desserts worth saving. And I believe in you. We all do, even if you don’t believe in yourself.”

When Eve finally looked up, she found herself staring into Jeff’s eyes. They were warmer and sweeter than any chocolate ganache she’d ever made.

His free hand found its way to her other elbow and she allowed herself to be drawn from the counter. Jeff pulled her into his embrace, his hands releasing her elbows to slide around the small of her back, holding her close.

There was no denying the butterflies now.

Author information

Lindy Miller is an author of feel-good love stories that are full of sweet moments and happy endings. She believes the best time to fall in love is during the holidays, preferably over a cup of warm tea or a delicious vegan pastry – two things she can’t get enough of.

A free spirit, Lindy loves to travel and has a soft spot for Bar Harbor, Maine though she grew up at home in the South. She is married to her childhood sweetheart and bakes as often as she can for her husband, son, and pets – especially her golden retriever, Finn, who has a tendency to show up in her stories (and her Instagram!)

Lindy is represented by Gandolfo Helin & Fountain Literary Management and supported by Smith Publicity.

Member Romantic Novelist Association (RNA).

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Carnivals are usually noisy not silent

Ven'tarian Silence
(Of Cats And Dragons) #6
by Carol E. Leever (Author), Camilla Ochlan (Author)
Fantasy, Animals, Magic, Adventures
independently published
23 Aug. 2020

Guided by troubling visions and chased by death-dealing horrors, Omen Daenoth and the feisty talking cats find themselves center stage in the city of Ven'taria, a place of uncanny magic and jaw-dropping revelry. But when Omen and his companions -- an eminent Sundragon scholar, the notorious prince of Terizkand, a child prophet, and a paranoid Machelli spy -- unravel the dark source of the Ven'tarian Socerium's incredible powers, a desperate countdown begins.Can our young heroes and their chatty felines break the dreaded Ven'tarian Silence or will they bring on the forbidding reign of endless night?OF CATS AND DRAGONS, where the epic meets the adorable.

The next in the series about the cats and dragons and…

So off the whole crew go in a rather special ship through a wormhole and into their world’s equivalent of Venice. A city built on canals and islands but the canals aren’t smelly (wow – not like Venice in reality then, especially in August) and the city is going to hold its Carnivale – see Venice’s Carnivale – which not only has masked balls but artwork and sculpture and…

And everyone needs a mask – even the cats – and when dusk falls they find out why they not only need the masks but also why they need to have hotel rooms, and not just for the banquet.

Elephant Carnival mask stock image. Image of medieval - 110933327

Adventures befall them all as they try to help the small sprites and ethereal creatures that power the magic that runs the city (and as they realise the ship too). Take down one, take down all. And disaster comes close as there are monsters out there in the night.

A rollicking tale of trial and tribulation and terrors which follows nicely on from previous adventures. And yes, cats can fly too… I’m sure mine would love to as they find climbing fences a lot of effort!

Our own mini Tiger or great ginger cat! Oh, and he is very chatty too, but not in English…

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Calypso

Calypso’s Heart
(Orion’s Order #1)
M.C. Solaris
Adult, Paranormal, Romance
May 15th 2020

CALYPSO’S HEART is an adult paranormal wolf shifter romance. If you like swoon-worthy males, heroines with feminine strength, an engaging plot, satisfying relationships, steamy love stories, happy ever afters, and getting sucked into a supernatural story, then you’ll want to immerse yourself in the world of species! 

You’ll feel right at home if you’re a JR Ward, Nalini Singh, and Dannika Dark fan.

 

How Was Calypso’s Heart Born?

By M.C. Solaris, paranormal romance author of Calypso’s Heart (Orion’s Order Book 1)

So, I was sitting at my desk with my story outline I’d been working on for years and a brand new, blank Google Doc page and—

*cue the record scratch sound effect*

Although that may be the way many books were born, that is so not how Calypso’s Heart was born… not in the least. You see, I was never “in the closet” about writing. I didn’t write in secret at night after work (and maybe drunkenly get the courage to anonymously post short stories on some blog a time or two). I didn’t harbor my story and character ideas notebook close to my heart (or rather, in the safe at the back of said closet). Hell, writing paranormal romance stories (let alone publishing them) wasn’t even a tiny blip on my radar. Seriously! Sure, I’m an avid reader of PNR and love it but it wasn’t in the realm of my conscious mind to write PNR.

So, how exactly was Calypso’s Heart born then?

This may sound weird but the honest answer is during the January 2019 super blood moon eclipse, I literally woke up and began writing bios for my imaginary friends (AKA the characters that were suddenly in my head introducing themselves and sharing their world with me). And as soon as I started writing, I couldn’t stop. The words and scenes were just in my mind, playing out like a movie and I decided to write them down. This is how Calypso’s Heart was born. This is also how the other books in the series were born (which I’m working on publishing as soon as possible).

So, I wasn’t an “in the closet” writer taking creative writing classes at night (or any kind of writing classes, in fact) and honing my craft for years. I’m just a person who woke up one day, saw a new dream, was over the moon excited about it, and decided to just go for it. And I’m sharing this because if you’re reading this (thank you 🙂 ) and you wake up one day with a new dream or desire, don’t be afraid to see where it takes you. Who knows what you’ll birth into the world.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

M.C. Solaris’s life took an unexpected turn during the super blood moon eclipse on January 20, 2019. She woke up and began writing bios for her imaginary friends that she met that day. As soon as the pen hit the paper (or fingertips to the iPhone), she couldn’t stop. It was kind of like one of those fire hydrants, spewing copious amounts of water all over the place. The characters and their stories just flowed out of her. She is honored to be the scribe, getting to share her friends’ stories. You can read all about her gifted friends in the Orion’s Order series (Book 1 is Calypso’s Heart).

On a personal note, M.C. Solaris is actually the pseudonym of Marina Schroeder, women’s health enthusiast and lover of all things paranormal romance (PNR) and happily ever after (HEA). When she is not curled up on the sofa with her partner’s oversized hoodie, a PNR novel, peppermint tea, and one of her three cats, you will find her either at the ocean with her toes in the sand or in a forest hugging a tree. Well truthfully? There is one more place you might find her: trolling the aisles of Whole Foods for a satisfying combination of salty and sweet while hiding in her partner’s hoodie… like any proper PNR-writing introvert.

Want to get the latest scoop, sneak peeks, and short shares all about her imaginary friends? Go to www.mcsolaris.com and sign up for the newsletter.
Welcome to The Order!

If you enjoy Psy-Changeling and Black Dagger Brotherhood, this new series is right up your alley!

Sexy shifters. Hot vampires. Intriguing immortals. Strong heroine. Sizzling romance. Page-turning plot full of emotion and excitement. Modern and fresh take on fated mates.

Caly

Do you dream of ridiculously hot men? Okay, maybe you do. (And yes, I’m well aware I should lay off the romance books before bed.) But do you actually ever meet those men you dream about in real life? I didn’t think so. That’s probably a good thing though because I have… And these men from my dreams have done nothing but pull the rug of reality out from under me… which was how I fell and ended up in a world that I thought only existed in romance books.

My name is Caly (AKA Callie) and I’m just an ordinary single woman living the LA dream… paycheck to paycheck. Except whose dream is it? I’m not really sure… but it’s not my dream. Especially because I have really weird dreams… like really weird. Then again, everyone has weird dreams, right?

Blake

I am an alpha wolf shifter and leader of Orion’s Order, a pack of… well, not wolves. We’re an unconventional pack of highly skilled specian hunters that do one thing: hunt the evil in our world. And we were hired by SILE (Species Investigative Law Enforcement) to hunt a bloodthirsty criminal who is infamously untraceable. That was until an irresistible female brought an unexpected twist to our hunt and set things in motion… a motion that has left my pack and our world forever changed.

Welcome to The Order and a secret world of magic and mystery, where a pack of unlikely friends find love and fight against an ancient evil force.

Devour this addictive series at your own risk…

+ Happily Ever After

+ Steamy Paranormal Shifter Romance

+ Multiple POV

+ Mature Content

———————————————-

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Medieval Forensics?

Centaur of the Crime Book Cover Centaur of the Crime
Fantasy and Forensics #1
Michael Angel
fantasy, crime, forensics, murder, mystery
Banty Hen Publishing
(17 Jan. 2014)

C.S. Lewis meets CSI...when Michael Angel presents a new series mixing magic, mystery, and forensic science - 'Fantasy & Forensics'!

She's the LAPD's best corpse-kicker. Dayna Chrissie, LAPD's leading Crime Scene Analyst, relishes finding the one clue that can solve a crime. When she finds a golden medallion on a body that's been dumped at a downtown construction site, she doesn't think it's all that unusual. Until that medallion's enchantment brings her to the magical world of Andeluvia.

She must find a killer in time to stop a war. Dayna discovers that she's been summoned to solve the murder of the realm's king before war breaks out between Andeluvia and the Centaur Realm. But no one wants peace when war offers chances for riches and glory. So Dayna ends up with a team of cast-offs: a centaur wizard with father issues, a brash griffin warrior, and the world's unluckiest magical deer.

And the trail leads where she least expects it...back home! When the trail of evidence brings Dayna and her new friends back from Andeluvia to Los Angeles, she must use all of her forensic knowledge in order to solve the case.

The price of failure? A war that will kill millions and devastate Andeluvia.

Hope she works best under pressure.

Books in the 'Fantasy & Forensics' Series:
Centaur of the Crime
The Deer Prince's Murder
Grand Theft Griffin
A Perjury of Owls
Forgery of the Phoenix
Assault in the Wizard Degree
Trafficking in Demons
A Warrant of Wyverns
The Conspiracy of Unicorns
Dragon with a Deadly Weapon

This is a 10 book series – and yes, I did read them all in one great reading splurge…

Important characters:

Dayna – the forensics expert; Grimshaw – a griffin; Liam a type of deer but not; Abbess Thea – an owl; Perrin , Holly and Destiny,

 Not to mention Fitzwilliam, Shelley and Esteban – Dayna’s boyfriend in the police.

A large cast of characters, all of whom manage to speak English, though they may have their own languages as well and also magical or ancient languages. After all, we are not on Earth are we?

Dayna is (accidentally) called into this fantasy land by a gold coin she finds in a cavity in the body she is examining at a crime scene. The coin could have been picked up by anyone, but was aimed at someone with forensics knowledge as the world she was called into was still operating as a Medieval society.  So no mechanical items, no science, but poisons and other mysterious happenings including murder that was difficult for them to find out who-dunnit.

Rather reminiscent of the Cadfael TV series (and Ellis Peters books,) with Derek Jacobi – as the monk who solved murders with medieval herbs and elementary forensics, I immediately saw the TV episodes in my mind, once I started reading these books! I liked both…

If you are going to live in a medieval palace/tower with only a fire to keep you warm and are going to spend a lot of the time riding around in cold weather, she clearly needed to think more practically.

I thought Dayna was being less than practical. Once she discovered that she could take a knapsack to and fro, I would have packed the following for her:

Caffetiere

Metal kettle for a fire

Coffee grounds

Aspirin and ibuprofen

Arnica gel and tablets

Plasters and needles and thread

Other over the counter medicines as suitable including anti-diarrhoea meds,

Other instant / dried drinks eg milk, chocolate etc

Chocolate bars

Protein bars

Apples – fresh plus assorted dried fruit

Packets of soup – instant (and other instant foods)

Lemons and limes

Fleeces

Long Johns and silk underwear

Padded riding knickers and saddle pads (fleece lined and waterproof jodhpurs)

Fleece lined wooly hat.

Thermal socks.

Neck gaiter

Waterproofs and hiking trousers that were fleece lined

Ski wear

and look at these lined riding boots – who wouldn’t want to wear them?

I enjoyed these books and binge read all 10.

5 stars for something new in the fantasy genre.

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They all can’t fit in – normality

Magic Misfit: A Reverse Harem Academy Romance Book Cover Magic Misfit: A Reverse Harem Academy Romance
(Raven Academy Book 1)
A. Caprice
paranormal romance, young adult
kindle

The Raven Academy could save my life… if it doesn’t kill me first.

 

Waitressing might pay my bills, but it’s my cage fighting at night that really cranks my gears. Until some weird hidden power helped me win a fight. Now no one wants to step in the ring with me.

And my life is going from weird to worse. The same night a werewolf tried to tear out my throat, a guy shows up telling me magic exists AND goes on to prove it. And, oh yeah, my life is in danger now that my abilities have started to show.

Apparently the answer is for me to follow this hottie professor to some Raven Academy and learn magic. School was never my jam, but at least this one comes with a hot demon who’s helping me train and a sexy fellow student who seems to be interested in more than just study hall. Throw in Professor Sexy Pants tutoring me privately to improve my magic, and it’s every girl’s dream.

Until I find out I’m part of some save-the-world prophecy, and the fate of all supernatural creatures rests on my shoulders. Great.

If my sexy consorts and I can’t pummel my magic into shape soon, we’re all doomed…

Magic Misfit is the first book in the Raven Academy series, a reverse harem romance with a university-age heroine having all the fun. Get this book if you like kick-ass heroines, steamy heroes, and smexy scenes so hot they’ll steam up your e-reader,. All characters are 18+.

This is a fun young adult book with a reverse harem theme as she just can’t decide on which of the males ‘courting’ her, she wants. So difficult to decide I guess… although at least the Professor tries not to get involved with her – serious offence to fraternise sexually with a student you are teaching – and in some unis, any students even when you are not teaching them. You get thrown out.

Add in a sort of school – well they call it a university – but more like a college without degrees but thematic in types of magic, where most people attend at 17 years – normal for the USA, and she is older, and…

So there are the bitchy girls, the in-crowd, the young guys who are top of the ‘leader’ board with competition for their attention and jealousy – you get the idea.

I really like the idea that someone thinks it makes him look like a Professor because he wears a ‘vest’. I assume one like the one below or with buttons. Personally, having worked in a number of British universities and having known Canadian, American, Spanish and other nationalities of Professors well, I have never ever met a Professor wearing one….

How To Dress Sharp As A Professor | Guide To Become A Well-Dressed ...

Do I want to read more of these – it being book 1 of a series? No, but not quite my scene even if fun and should appeal to those who like this trope variant.

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