Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Celebrating Ends But Someone Goes Away Very Happy ...

Christian and I want to thank everyone who stopped by to visit
and especially those who Christian says, "Made his visit so delightful!"
He really is quite harmless but it's wise, if you invite him
into your home, to have cheesecake or else he's liable to
need some other sweet nectar to soothe his hunger.
Well, I promised that One Lucky Commenter
would be randomly chosen and allowed to pick
their choice of one of these fabulous New Releases ...
BLAZE by Joan Swan,
HOW A LADY WEDS A ROGUE by Katharine Ashe
THE LADY RISKS ALL by Stephanie Laurens
LORD OF TEMPTATION by Lorraine Heath
THE FORBIDDEN LADY by Kerrelyn Sparks
 (originally published under the title FOR LOVE OR COUNTRY)
That's some selection, so the Winner is:
Congratulations, Beebs, you have been notified by email and
I hope you check your mail and SPAM folder
for the message so you can pick your prize.
Thank you again to all my fabulous readers, new ones too,
for making this past year so much fun.
I can't wait to see what the next year has in store for us.
Happy Reading Everyone! xoxo

Friday, September 28, 2012

Still Celebrating But Someone Ate The Cake!

Well, it's been a wonderful week of celebration but like all good things it does have to come to an end! The celebrating, I mean, not the blog! I hope you've enjoyed yourself meeting my friends - unusual characters that they are. I have decided that today, I'm going to do something a little different in the way of a Giveaway to finish off the celebrating. On Tuesday, I listed some new releases that I thought you would enjoy. Well, today's giveaway is the winner's choice of any book on that list. Not sure which books were listed? Feel free to peruse them by clicking on the caption beneath the picture to the left or check out the buy link pics at the end of this post.

Suddenly, a very tall man saunters into the room. He's got broad shoulders, trim waist, golden curls brushing the collar of a black silk shirt of which the sleeves are rolled part way to his elbows showing off strong arms and large hands in which he carries a plate with something yummy looking on it. 

Amy:  Christian, what are you doing here? Where did you get that cheesecake?

The man slides into a nearby chair and crosses his long legs clad in soft gray leather pants. He wiggles his black-booted foot and smiles. Oh, my what a gorgeous smile he has. 

Christian:  I thought I'd drop by and wish you happy whatever this celebration is about and the cheesecake ...

He takes another big bite and winks a sky blue eye at me. 

Christian:  Well, the cheesecake was out on the counter in the kitchen. I thought you'd want me to sample it. It's very good, by the way. 

He scoops another bite onto his fork and looks at it.

Christian:  Is that raspberry?

He quickly closes his full lips around the tines of the fork, slides the morsel into his mouth, sucking the confection off the fork as he withdraws it. He savors it happily.

Amy:  Christian Delos, that cheesecake was supposed to be for my guests.  And yes, it's raspberry.  Did you leave any?

Christian shrugs his broad shoulders and grins guiltily.

Christian:  Ooops.  I think there's one piece left. Oh, come on now, Miss Amy, you know how I love cheesecake and Serena is so busy these days with her ... ugh ... antique shop that she hasn't made me one lately. Oh ... how I wish she still had a bakery.

He scrapes the remaining confection from the plate and licks the fork clean. My attention is glued to that mouth and tongue. He places the fork on the plate and sets it down on a nearby table.  He grins at me and clasps his hands together while resting his elbows on the chair arms.

Christian:  So ... what are we celebrating?

Amy:  Celebrating? Oh, my blog was one year old this week. I was just telling my guests that I am going to give away one of the books on the New Release list that I posted on Tuesday to one lucky commenter.

Christian sits up in his chair, his interest piqued, and rubs his hands together.

Christian:  Is my story that you wrote, THE HEART NEVER FORGETS, about my beautiful Alicia Courtland falling in love with me during World War II, among those listed?

Amy:  [sigh]  No, it's not. I am beginning to wonder about it though. I submitted it almost four months ago. Surely, they would have told me yes or no by now. Wouldn't you think?

Christian:  Well, my dear, I could pay them a visit and with a little mind control, I could have them eating out of your hand.  Shall I?

Amy:  Shhhh ... you know you're not supposed to talk about such things in front of us ...

I lower my voice so only he can hear which I really don't need to do because his hearing is very acute.

Amy:  Us ... Humans!

Christian glances about at your eager faces and with a twinkle in his sky blue eyes, he winks at me.

Christian:  Right. I forgot. Please, don't tell Serena I slipped. You know how self-righteous she gets about the rules. So ... you don't want me to pay a visit to these editor people?

I can't help but smile at this adorable and 0h, so sexy man. I'm also very tempted to allow him to do just what he has offered but I know that wouldn't be playing fair and I do wish to get published on my own merit not with the help of a - well, I'll just say that the man is like ... well, a god.

Amy:  No, I don't. Don't you worry your handsome golden head, Christian, I will someway, somehow, make sure everyone knows your wonderful albeit strange love story. If need be ... I'll publish it right here. 

Christian rises from his chair, picks up his empty plate and brushes a sweet kiss against the top of my head.

Christian:  It will happen, Miss Amy, it will happen. Our story is very old and it's willing to wait. Now ... I'm going to get myself that last piece of cheesecake. 

With that said, the gorgeous tall man saunters off toward the kitchen. I can't help but check out his backside as he goes.

Amy:  Oh my gosh, the last piece!  Christian!

I sigh woefully.

Amy:  Sorry about the cheesecake, my dears. It was supposed to be for my guests not for that cheesecake eating hunk, Christian Delos. 

I shake my head.

Well, I guess you'll just have settle, instead, with your choice of any one book listed on the NEW RELEASE TUESDAY list.

So now, I'm curious ... what's your favorite confection?

Comment and leave an EMAIL ADDRESS and you will entered for a chance to win YOUR CHOICE of one of the books in ebook format listed on the last NEW RELEASE TUESDAY post. 
This Giveaway will be OPEN TO EVERYONE - International included (void where prohibited, of course).
This Giveaway will run until 2PM EDT Sunday, September 30, 2012 at which time ONE LUCKY COMMENTER will be chosen at random, notified by mail and announced on a special post. That winner will be able to choose one book from the list of new releases - all of which are listed below.

THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED! Thanks for joining in the fun!
Thanks so much for visiting me this past year and I hope you will continue to visit in the future and enjoy whatever craziness I come with during the week.  It's because of you that I'm still here and not going anywhere - yet, anyway.  : )

Happy Reading Everyone!  xoxo


Thursday, September 27, 2012

And Four Copies of TARNISHED by Karina Cooper go to ...

Thank you to everyone who visited and help me celebrate my
one year anniversay here at UNWRAPPING ROMANCE.
A great big THANK YOU to Karina Cooper for playing
along with me and lending me the fabulous Cherry St. Croix for a Q & A.
You're the best and thank you for spreading the word, too.
Well, I've got four (4) print copies of TARNISHED
to award to four (4) lucky commenters.
The Winners Are:
All the winners have been notified by email and I hope they
check their mailboxes and SPAM folders so they don't
miss the notifications. Congrats to all of you and I hope you
enjoy this fabulous steampunk romance.
Thank you to everyone who visited and who entered for a chance
to win, I'm sorry I don't have copies for everyone.
This has been a great week of celebrating and it's not over yet.
Join me Friday for yet another Giveaway and this one
will be OPEN to EVERYONE!
Y'all are wonderful and have made my year so great!
Happy Reading Everyone!
Amy V  xoxo

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Thanks for celebrating UNWRAPPING ROMANCE's first anniversary
in blogger world - I have all of you to thank for its success.
Thanks to everyone who visited to meet my dear Miss Anna Pelt
and she sends her regards to those who gave her romance advice.
The Winner of
by Sarah MacLean is:
Congratulations to Leah and I hope she'll check her mail
and SPAM folder for her notifying email.
Thanks again to everyone who played and for giving
Miss Anna advice on romance. I'm working on the
final revision of her story now and will be submitting
soon so keep your fingers crossed for me.
Y'all have been good luck for me so far.
Happy Reading Everyone! xoxo 

Wacky Wednesday: A Visit With Cherry St. Croix from TARNISHED by Karina Cooper

UNWRAPPING ROMANCE is one year old today!! It's so amazing to think that a blog started on a whim and a rant could have actually caught on and is doing so much better than I ever expected after a year. I owe it all to you, my wonderful readers. Thank you.

To celebrate this auspicious occasion and to keep the party going, I'm happy to tell you that I have a very special guest visiting with me today. Of course, I was only able to procure her company with the gracious cooperation of her creator, Karina Cooper, who I would like to congratulate on the release of her newest Dark Mission Novel, SACRIFICE THE WICKED - available now from Avon in print and ebook formats.

Today, we have are joined by Miss Cherry St. Croix. She's come all the way from an alternative London to be with us and to help me give away FOUR (yes, 4) PRINT COPIES of her first written chronicle - TARNISHED.  Several weeks back, I reviewed this amazing steampunk romance so if you'd like to read my review, please click on the title but hurry back because Cherry will be joining me any moment.

While we await Cherry's arrival from where a choking fog blankets Victorian London—and in a stroke of discriminatory genius, Society has raised London to the sky. Let me tell you just a bit about our unusual guest.

Her name is Cherry St. Croix. Society would claim that she is a well-heeled miss with an unfortunate familial reputation. They’ve no idea of the truth of it. In her secret world, she hunts down vagrants, thieves… and now, a murderer. For a monster stalks London’s streets, leaving a trail of mystery and murder below the fog.
Eager for coin to fuel her infatuations, she must decide where her attentions will turn: To her daylight world, where her scientific mind sets her apart from respectable Society, or to the compelling domain of London below. Each has a man who has claimed her time as his – for good or for ill. Though as the corpses pile, and the treacherous waters of Society gossip churn, she is learning that each also has its dangers. One choice will see her cast from polite company… the other might just see her dead.

Ah, she's arrived! Please join me in welcoming Miss Cherry St. Croix to UNWRAPPING ROMANCE.

Amy:  Hi Cherry, thank you so much for taking time from your busy life to join us here today. Please feel free to make yourself comfortable. You may set your knives aside for I can assure you that you are quite safe here.

Cherry:  Well, and thank you for having me here today! I'm quite delighted to be given an invite that does not include ball gowns and frippery. Although I, ah, may or may not choose to keep hold of my weaponry, if 'tis all the same to you.

Amy:  By all means, whatever makes you feel most comfortable. Perhaps you'd like to tell us a little bit about yourself for those of who don't know you yet.

Cherry:  Very well. My name is Cherry St. Croix, and I am the daughter of Dr. Abraham St. Croix and his wife, Josephine. They are quite dead. If that makes me sound cold, I do apologize. 'Tis only that I was very young when they died in a terrible laboratory accident and I don't recall either very well. I am not well-liked by Society, but they can stuff it for all I give a toss. I spend my evenings, when I've the need, below the foggy drift, collecting bounties for coin.

Amy:  I'm sorry you lost your parents at a young age and that you feel such animosity. You do live quite a duplicitous life in a city that has two very distinct personalities, so perhaps you may wish that your life was more settled in one or the other?

Cherry:  Oh, heavens, no. Can you imagine? Stuck into a single world where there is only ever one path laid out for you? For me, more importantly. I certainly don't mean to be rude, please excuse me, but you must understand that in Society above the drift, there is only one thing for a woman to do: marry. Marry well, have children, raise them to be good sons or daughters to be married and inherit and breed like... like kennel hounds. No, thank you. And below! Below can be just as bad, though it takes a good deal of effort to see the similarities. In the fog, a woman must be as ready to fight as the men, to protect herself, her things. Her desires. Most free women below are doxies, and then "free" if only because they've managed to avoid the efforts of a man to collar them and sell them himself.

No, while I enjoy the means of London high and the freedoms of London below, I do not think I'd be willing to marry myself to either. I possess too broad a palate for one.

Amy:  Well,  you're certainly of a strong mind. I admire that quality in anyone but especially in a woman. You mentioned spending your nights collecting bounties for coin - as a collector you live a dangerous life and now that there is a murderer on the loose in London, you are in even more danger. Are you truly prepared to collect this extreme criminal?

Cherry:  Certainly. A murderer of this ilk—this "Leather Apron", if you will—is not a creature of extreme cunning or wit. He is an animal, savage and without conscience, and animals can be corralled. It may take some effort, but I've a promise to keep and the sweets are counting on me. The hardest part will be figuring a place to start. This beast has been roaming free too long; he has made the streets his home. But he will, in time, make a mistake. He likely already has. I only need to find it out.

Amy:  I wish you the best of luck in your endeavor. Perhaps with some help ... then again, I don't suppose you'd ... never mind. You've got two men in your life, one who society prefers you be with and the other who keeps himself at a distance but always seems to be there. Who do you feel you are more likely to put your trust in, Hawke or Compton?

Cherry:  Neither. A woman's trust placed in a man is tantamount to gift-wrapping her freedom and placing a delicate little bow atop. I have no interest in relying on one or the other for anything but company, and even then I'd rather lick a toad than force myself to accept Hawke's company for the pleasure of it. And the earl, good gracious. Earl Compton is playing at a game I don't understand. His mother despises me, and as the unfashionable daughter of Mad St. Croix, it's utterly confounding that he sees me worth any amount of his time. He's a ruddy earl, for heaven's sake. And certainly, I've never given any indication that I am interested in marriage to the man. To any man, for that matter.

No, there will be no trust placed in the hands of either, for trust is a gift that comes with strings. It is power. I prefer my life to be in my own hands.

Amy:  [aside ] I think she protests too much.  *wink*
I have to admit that I find it difficult to put my trust in Compton, for I think there is more there than meets the eye, but Hawke ... he, well ... never mind.

You've recently discovered a lot of things about yourself and those around you. Where do you see yourself heading next in your search for the truth and when can we expect to read the next installment of your St. Croix Chronicles?

Cherry:  There is, of course, a debt to be paid. I believe I shall have to start by visiting a certain laboratory, for all the idea gives me the shivers. In the meantime, I am given to understand that there are those in my circle who know something more of my family than expected. I will have to walk subtly and bide my time, but I am eager to learn what is known that I do not know myself.

There is definitely a mystery afoot, no?

Amy:  Most definitely and we are just as eager as you to get to the bottom of it.
Cherry, it's been a delight meeting you and having you visit today. I understand you're expected elsewhere, some social event I suppose, so I won't keep you any longer. You're such a brave and exciting woman. Do you have any advice for my lovely readers for living a more exciting life admist the day-to-day doldrums?

Cherry:  You are ever so kind; are you sure I can't cajole you into tea? Perhaps a lively game of—no, no, you're right. I mustn't keep Fanny waiting.

As for your readers, why, I am no expert on social matters. Perhaps, then, I should say that one should always strive to be what is unexpected. Society has so many demands levied upon us all: marry well, don't smile in public, walk with an escort, make such frivolous smalltalk as one's eyes must resist rolling back in one's head. Do this, think that, feel this... It's enough to drive a woman mad. Be the person you want to be. None of this 'perhaps one day' rubbish. Live your life as if you already have the life you want, and these things will happen.

Oh, and perhaps look into becoming a collector. It's a dangerous life, but it certainly adds a little kick to one's skirts.

That said, the lady rises from her seat. Gathers her 'tools of the trade' and saunters off into the fog that has suddenly arisen in the corner of the room. As soon as she is through, the fog disappears.

Amy: Wow, what an amazing woman. I hope you enjoyed her visit and learned a little bit more about Cherry St. Croix, the heroine of TARNISHED by Karina Cooper because I've got four - yes, 4 print copies of TARNISHED by Karina Cooper to give away in celebration of UNWRAPPING ROMANCE surviving and actually thriving in blogger world.

So, if you're interested in winning one of these FOUR PRINT COPIES, please tell me what you do to overcome the day-to-day doldrums of every day life?

Remember to leave an EMAIL ADDRESS with your comment in order to be entered in the Giveaway. This Giveaway is open to US Residents Only and will run until 11:30PM EDT on Thursday, September 27, 2012. Four (4) winners will be chosen at random, notified by email, then announced in a special post on Friday.  Remember the formula for entry:

My name is Cherry St. Croix. Society would claim that I am a well-heeled miss with an unfortunate familial reputation. They've no idea of the truth of it. In my secret world, I hunt down vagrants, thieves . . . and now, a murderer. For a monster stalks London's streets, leaving a trail of mystery and murder below the fog.

Eager for coin to fuel my infatuations, I must decide where my attentions will turn: to my daylight world, where my scientific mind sets me apart from respectable Society, or to the compelling domain of London below. Each has a man who has claimed my time as his—for good or for ill. Though as the corpses pile, and the treacherous waters of Society gossip churn, I am learning that each also has its dangers. One choice will see me cast from polite company . . . the other might just see me dead.

If you'd like to learn more about Karina Cooper and her books, please feel free to visit her at her website, follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest (she's got some awesome boards).
Also, Cherry's steampunk adventures will continue in GILDED by Karina Cooper, due to release on December 26, 2012 - how 'bout that for a Christmas gift!  

In the meantime, Happy Reading Everyone and Good Luck!!
Thank you for making this past year so awesome and I'm eagerly awaiting the year ahead of us.  xoxo

TARNISHED, the St. Croix Chronicles by Karina Cooper, Avon Romance, available now in print and ebook formats.


Tuesday, September 25, 2012


It's that time of the month again - no, not THAT time of the month the better one - the one when great new reads appear on the shelves. It's New Release Tuesday! And there are some awesome new reads. Get ready for your TBR list to lengthen. 

Just a taste of what fabulous reads are now yours to peruse.
Happy Reading Everyone
remember the celebration continues with
Wacky Wednesday (anniversary day).
See you then.  xoxo