Guest Author & Giveaway: Patricia Grasso featuring Marrying the Marquis

Monday, November 30

***This giveaway has ended, but don't let that stop you from reading the post :)  Thanks for joining the fun.***

My guest today is Patricia Grasso, and like so many of my current favorite historical romance authors, she was an accidental library find.  The first book I read was To Charm a Prince.  I didn't decide to read it because it had an enticing cover, or a seductive title, but because it was available and it was a regency romance.  Despite this, it was love at first read, and I am so thankful that I picked the book up because I was definitely charmed by this love story. 

I have read all of Patricia's romances and have loved each and every one of them, especially To Charm a Prince, Pleasuring the Prince, To Love a Princess, and To Tempt an Angel, but really I don't think you can go wrong with any of her books.  The men always make mistakes, the women eventually forgive them after making them pay in some way, and somewhere along the way they fall in love....and the butler is usually key in helping the heroes see the error of their ways.  They are fun, romantic, and sensuous.  A great combination for a romance novel. 

Patricia's newest book, Marrying the Marquis, is the third book in the Flambeau Sisters series.  The series is about seven young women who were bastard born to a Duke, who each have a "special" talent, who struggle to come to terms with their father, whom they felt abandoned them and  their mother who committed suicide.  What I love about this series is that while their are sad moments, there are also many moments of fun between the sisters and their stepmother who teaches them how to stand on their own among the privileged ton, a father learning to be a "father" to young women, and the men who are brave enough to capture them.   

Marrying the Marquis is about Blaze....a red haired, freckled, vegetarian who is an animal lover/whisperer who has sworn never to marry in fear of having her freedom restricted.  Ross is her Scottish hero who is enchanted by her uniqueness, and has decided that Blaze is the perfect wife for him and will use any means, including her love for animals and her attraction to him to make her his wife.
 



 Welcome to Seductive Musings Patricia!

I'm a dog person.  Who lives with ten cats.  Get the picture? 

My first brush with romance happened in my high school junior year.  I discovered GONE WITH THE WIND and hid it behind my American history book to read during class.  The ending left me dissatisfied, though.  Rhett and Scarlett needed a happily-ever-after.  Believing in happily-ever-afters shouts romantic-at-heart. 

After graduating high school without distinction, I attended college.  Again, without distinction.  I held several part-time jobs during my college days:  file clerk for an insurance company, long-distance telephone operator, kimono-wearing waitress in a Japanese restaurant. 

And then I started my teaching career, eighteen years in the 8th grade and thirteen years at the high school.  When I wasn't hanging out in bars looking for Mr. Right, I was reading historical romance. 

Then I decided to write my own.  Actually, I decided to talk for five years about writing my own.  A friend finally told me to stop talking and start writing.

So I began my first novel (HIGHLAND BELLE) and made every mistake known to man.  Blunder is a more appropriate word, but I did learn from all those blunders. 

For twenty years, I taught full-time and wrote full-time  which kept me out of bars.  That saved me from hundreds of horrid dates with Mr. Wrong. 

After five years of writing for nothing but love, I sold my first novel in 1990.  Since then, I've sold eighteen historical romances and won several awards.  (National Readers' Choice Award, New England Readers' Choice Award, Romantic Times Reviewers Choice and KISS Awards, B. Dalton and Bookrak Awards for bestselling author.  My books have been translated into fifteen lanugages and are sold in twenty countries. 

If I had my life over, would I become a writer?  Nope.  I would love to be a Victoria Secret model.  Perhaps in my next incarnation?



MARRYING THE MARQUIS     

Miss Blaze Flambeau, the Duke of Inverary's daughter, likes most animals but most gentlemen annoy her.  Blessed with a special gift, Blaze is an animal communicator.  When her father gives her a thoroughbred racehorse, Blaze decides to enter her filly in Newmarket's most prestigious races and win enough money to build an animal refuge.  She does have a problem, though.  Her filly is fast but flawed and needs specialized training in order to win the races.

Enter Ross MacArthur....

The Scottish Marquis of Awe.  MacArthur is one of three suitors for Blaze's and in marriage and is an experienced thoroughbred breeder who owns several champions.  He insists on helping Blaze train her filly and win the races.

Danger stalks Newmarket....  

England's premier jockey is murdered and one of the thoroughbreds, a contender for the championships, is poisoned.  Someone wants to win badly enough to murder both man and animal.   And then the villain targets Blaze....

Daughter of a wealthy duke, Blaze Flambeau has no shortage of gentlemen vying for her hand in marriage-yet all she desires is her independence. She'd much rather devote her energies to caring for her prized thoroughbred than to the fortune hunters who knock down her door. But her father is ready to see her wed, so he makes her a bargain: she may participate in the racing season only if she gives each suitor a fighting chance at her heart.

One man, however, makes Blaze a far more scandalous proposition: her reputation or his bed! For Ross MacArthur, Marquis of Awe, knows something that could ruin her, and he will not hesitate to use it to win her. Blaze cannot let the Scottish rogue have his way-or her innocence-but never in her life has she been so tempted. Perhaps the Marquis's scheme doesn't pose such a dilemma after all...


  



My many thanks to Patricia for being my guest today.  Marrying the Marquis releases tomorrow, December 1st. I've been waiting for this one for a year and am very excited about it.  You can find her at her website PatriciaGrasso.com.

To celebrate the release of Marrying the Marquis, Patricia has offered to giveaway a signed bookmark to anyone who wants one, just email her with your name and mailing address (sorry US only)...and she has also generously offered to giveaway TWO signed books from her backlist!

Here's how you enter to win one...


Ways to earn entries:
  • Mandatory: Answer both questions: What is your favorite  book by Patricia Grasso, and why?  and...What book from her backlist intrigues you the most and why?  You never know you might just win it!  (good for 1 entry) 
  • Become a follower of Seductive Musings, and/or mention that you are already a follower in your comment (good for 5 entries)
  • Blog about this contest on your blog and leave a link with your comment (good for 15 entries)
  • If you don't have a blog, don't worry you can earn extra entries by telling your friends. If they leave a comment on this post and mention that you sent them you can each earn extra entries (good for 5 entries for the referrer and the commenter for each friend) 
  • Purchase any item from the Seductive Musings Amazon store by using this link, or the Amazon widget contained within this post and email a copy of your purchase receipt to me no later than the deadline to enter (email available in sidebar). Sorry purchases made prior to this date do not apply, and link contained in this post must be used. No faxes or snail mail copies are allowed. No purchases are necessary to win. (good for 25 entries, or 50 entries if a purchase is made from the featured author's available titles)
How to enter:
  • You can choose to enter as many different ways that you want, but please place all of your entries in ONE comment
Rules and disclaimers: 
  • This contest is open to residents of the U.S. only
  • The contest will end Saturday December 5th at 11:59 pm EST and winners will be posted after they have been selected
  • Winners will be selected using Random.org
  • All winners will have THREE days from the date they are posted to provide a mailing address. If you do not contact me within three days a replacement winner will be selected. NO EXCEPTIONS
  • The book(s) will be mailed directly from the publisher or author and no substitutions are allowed
  • Seductive Musings is not responsible for prizes that are not honored, distributed in a timely manner, lost, stolen, or damaged during transit 
  • All giveaways are subject to change/cancellation without prior written notice 
Good Luck!!!

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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links :)

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Monday's Muse

Sorry, but the image containing the Monday's Muse has been removed from this blog so as not to violate any copyright issues.  Thanks for your understanding!

Did you survive the holiday weekend?  Were you brave enough (and crazy enough) to go shopping on Friday?  I don't know about you, but this Monday was  a hard pill to swallow after a four day weekend, but I have just the cure!  Meet this week's new Gods of Football muse who is Dr. Booklover's cure-all for the Monday blues.  Take one, but no need to call me in the morning :)

This week I have some extra special goodness in addition to Monday's Muse:
  • On Monday (today)  Patricia Grasso will be my guest featuring her brand new historical romance Marrying the Marquis
  • Tuesday will feature three new teasers from Possess Me at Midnight, Marrying the Marquis and Hard to Hold
  • Wednesday's Share the Love post will feature some of my favorite holiday music
  • And...on Wednesday Stephanie Tyler will be my guest featuring her new Romantic Suspense novel Hard to Hold
  • Thursday and Friday I hope to have two new reviews for you
It's gonna be a great week!

p.s. next week will begin the voting for Muse of the Year

    Booklover signature (revised)
    *I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links :)

    Read more...

    Hidden Gems: Riding Temptation by Jaci Burton

    Friday, November 27




    I recently read my Hidden Gem pick for November just a few weeks ago, and knew within the first 50 pages that this novel was going to be my pick for this month...hands down.  I loved this book practically from page one, and it just kept getting better until the very satisfying ending.  My Hidden Gem for November is Riding Temptation by Jaci Burton, the second book in the Wild Riders series.  

    As soon as I finished Riding Temptation, I ordered Riding Wild (#1 in Wild Riders series) and Riding on Instinct (#3 in Wild Riders series), and also ordered Wild, Wicked and Wanton.  Yes, I was just that crazy in love with the first book I read of Jaci Burton's romances that I went on a book binge. Not really what I needed to do considering my TBR, but these gems are going straight to the top!  I can't wait to read them ALL.

    I decided to give a Jaci Burton romance a test drive when I was browsing through the newly purchased books at my local library when I noticed Riding Temptation.  I recognized the series, and had heard several good things about it from some fellow online readers, but for some reason they never made it to the buy list.  However, it seemed like serendipity for it to be sitting on the shelf, calling to me, just waiting for me  to appease my curiosity and to take it for a ride so to speak.

    And what a ride it was!  It was sexy,  super steamy, suspenseful, while at times tugging at my heartstrings. There was great chemistry not only with the hero and heroine, but also with the secondary characters which makes it not only a  great read, but a great series.  I loved everything about Jessie and Diaz's love story.  Both overcame troubled childhoods and received salvation, second changes and a surrogate family in the form of the Wild Riders. Even though I read book two in the series without first reading book one, I did not feel lost or that I was missing out on key information. Instead it made me more than curious about the rest of the series and beyond eager to read more, hence what I've now termed my "BBB" (Burton Book Binge)   :) 



    He’s a biker working undercover for the Feds. She joined the Wild Riders for reasons of her own. Together, they’re burning up the asphalt and tearing headlong into danger and passion…

    Naked under leather.

    Ever since runaway Jessie Matthews teamed up with the gang of special ops bikers, the Wild Riders have thought of her as their kid sister. Except for Diaz Delgado. Over the past few years he’s been watching the budding of a ripe young woman. Jessie’s glad somebody finally sees her for who she is—and she’s thrilled it’s Diaz. His dark good looks and killer body have tempted her since day one.

    Diaz’s unbrotherly urges have been hard to fight but the last thing he’d want to do is hurt Jessie and break up the gang. But when they both go undercover to infiltrate a group of killer survivalists, he knows it’ll be hard to keep his distance—especially when the mission takes a risky turn. Now Diaz has no choice but to open himself up to the one woman who may be strong enough to take him on.



    Riding Temptation is one of my favorite reads this year, and it introduced me to a new author....gotta love that "win-win". If you've never tried Jaci Burton, or the Wild Riders series, now is a great time because Amazon has Riding Temptation at a bargain price of only $6, and the Riding Wild, the first book in the series, is only $5.60!  New trade size paperbacks for less than mass market paperbacks?...I consider that an absolute steal, and is temptation indeed since you pay less than the list price of just one of these books.  I'm gonna make sure that I am caught up through book three, Riding on Instinct, by June because there will be a new Wild Riders novella in a brand new anthology with both Jaci Burton and Lora Leigh next summer (July 2010) titled Nauti and Wild.  I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am about that!! I knew that I was going to get Nauti and Wild because it had a novella for Lora Leighs' Nauti Boys series (and I love me some Nauti Boys), but now that I am hooked on Jaci Burton's Wild Riders series this pre-order went from "must have" to "dying to get my booklover hands on it".  Enjoy....I know I did :)  If you'd like to find out more about Jaci Burton and her books you can find her at JaciBurton.com...Feel the Passion.


    What's your Hidden Gem this month?



    p.s. this will be the last Hidden Gem for 2009.  At the end of December I will announce the Hidden Gem of the Year.



    Hidden Gems meme is hosted by Seductive Musings on the last Friday of every month (barring any special events). Anyone passionate about romance novels can participate. Just do the following:

    • Share a hidden gem that you've read and feel has been overlooked, or deserves to be brought to the attention of romance readers (please don't include books currently on blog tours). 
    • The book can be a new release, a current release, or an older novel. As long as it is in print, it is available for purchase, and is classified as a romance then it qualifies (historical romance, contemporary romance, paranormal romance, romantic suspense, erotic romance...). 
    • Reveal your hidden gem on the last Friday of the month on your blog using the Hidden Gem icon and following the participation rules. Tell us why you feel so passionately about this novel, then link your gem back to the current Seductive Musings Hidden Gem post. You can include excerpt links, teasers, back cover blurbs, book trailers, interviews, giveaways...whatever you like. 
    • The following Monday I will compile a list of the Hidden Gems posted and I'll have a poll where you can vote for your favorite hidden gems. At the end of the year I will compile the top hidden gem for each month and you can vote for the top 5 Hidden Gems of the year. Once the brightest gems are revealed I will invite the authors to guest at Seductive Musings to talk about their books, and upcoming releases.


    Booklover signature (revised)
    *I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links :)

    Read more...

    Musings Menagerie: Happy Thanksgiving!

    Thursday, November 26

    Happy Thanksgiving!!!




    When I saw this picture I immediately thought of my grandmother's turkey with the caption "No, not quite done yet".  God bless her, her turkeys were about a dry as dust each year...but the gravy almost made me weak in the knees it was so good.  I miss her so so much!  Really, I do.  I would eat her dry turkey everyday to be able to spend more time with her.

    I mention this because I was watching Rachel Ray this week and she had a special on Thanksgiving. She had what I thought was a great solution to save your dry turkey:
    • She recommended carving/slicing the turkey
    • Putting it in an oven safe container, then pour broth (she didn't specify chicken, or turkey but I'm sure when you are in a fix either will do) over all of it
    • Cover with aluminum foil and place in the oven @ 350 degrees for about 15 min for it to steam the juice into the turkey slices
    • Take it out of the oven, serve and act like everything is perfect, and watch your guests rave at how juicy and delicious the turkey is :) 
    I know, it kind of goes against what you would think to continue to cook the bird even more, but she swears by this method.  I haven't tried this myself, but I have some emergency broth on the standby for "just in case".



    BE THANKFUL

    Be thankful that you don't already have everything you desire.
    If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

    Be thankful when you don't know something,
    for it gives you the opportunity to learn.

    Be thankful for the difficult times.
    During those times you grow.

    Be thankful for your limitations,
    because they give you opportunities for improvement.

    Be thankful for each new challenge,
    because it will build your strength and character.

    Be thankful for your mistakes.
    They will teach you valuable lessons.

    Be thankful when you're tired and weary,
    because it means you've made a difference.

    It's easy to be thankful for the good things.
    A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who
    are also thankful for the setbacks.

    Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive.
    Find a way to be thankful for your troubles,
    and they can become your blessings.

    ~~Author Unknown.~~



    And finally, just for fun and a holiday stress reliever...I tried this and had to laugh to myself, so I thought I would share it with you :)



    Your Pilgrim Name Is: Desire Winslow






    A pilgrim is a wanderer with purpose.

    I have never heard of a pilgrim with the first name of "Desire", but found it hilarious nonetheless.  The name is kind of fitting don't you think, considering the nature and content of my blog?  I swear, it's completely random. Though, if I had truly been named "Desire" I think I would have been ostracized from the community. 

    Anyways, I hope everyone in the US has/had a great Thanksgiving with family, friends and loved ones.  And if you plan to go shopping on Black Friday....may God be with you!  Me, I am going to stay home and might check out some online sales.  Walmart and Amazon have been having price wars this week on hot gift items so I plan to check out Amazon's Black Friday deals that they have been tempting me with all week.  




    Booklover signature (revised)

    *I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links :)

    Read more...

    Seductive Museum: My favorite cover for November 2009



    I absolutely love my pick this month.  I have chosen the cover from Seduce Me in Shadow by Shayla Black as my Gallery of Fine Cover Art pick from November 2009.  

    I remember several months ago reading Shayla Blacks blog  post titled "The Big Switcheroo" and she was discussing the covers for her two new paranormal romance books in the Doomsday Brethren series that were coming out back to back and how she was initially distraught by them and did not feel they embodied the  heroes of the two books. You see, the current cover for Seduce Me in Shadow had been proposed for Possess Me at Midnight, and the current cover for Possess Me at Midnight was intended for Seduce Me in Shadow. When I first saw the covers I was immediately drawn to both of them, and after reading the blurbs my original thoughts were that the publisher had it correct the first time.  

    I thought that the cover they proposed for Possess Me at Midnight was perfect (the current Seduce Me in Shadow cover that is this month's pick).  I thought it imbued the essence of the title (Possess Me at Midnight) and what I pictured "Ice", the hero, to be like visually.  It had a "cool" feeling much like the character's nickname, and after all it had the word "Midnight" in the title, hence the darker ambiance. 

    As for Seduce Me in Shadow, whenever I hear the word "seduce" it always brings to mind a fiery passion of a hero with a devil may care attitude, hence the warm and fiery cover for Caden.  If I would have been the art department for these books, I would have thought it a home run upon submitting them for approval. 
    Shayla, however, was distressed because she felt neither cover embodied  either heroes' personality.  I couldn't understand at the time why she felt the way she did having only read the blurbs (neither book had been released), but I have to say having just finished reading both of these books back to back I can completely understand why she felt the way she did.  I think the author's intervention in the cover art was justified 100%...the solution was relatively simple in the end.  They just switched the covers for both books.  Ice's character from Possess Me at Midnight, who is full of passion and rage that rules his actions, got the cover with the fiery  hero despite his nickname and title that was initially intended for Caden from Seduce Me in Shadow.  And Caden received the cover proposed for Ice.
      
    Caden is wary of the magic world following a tragedy in his youth that involved the death of a brother.  Since that time he has shunned his heritage, estranged himself from his family, and has chosen a life of exile rather than risk another person that he cares for with the dangers from the world he was born to.  I think the replacement cover for Seduce Me in Shadow tries to tell that story in one visual image.  It shows how the hero is running from the past, and gives the impression by glancing off to the side...maybe even thinking about turning back, his possible reluctance to leave the safety of the cold, yet "safe" human existence he had been living.  While at the same time he could be seen as running towards the future he is hesitant to embrace.  Past, or present....which will he choose?  



    Yeah, it's perfect...nowIn person, I love it even more than I did when seeing it online for the first time.  The colors are more vivid and it has foil lettering for the word "Shadow" which gives it that little bit extra.  And lets not forget the yumminess that is the shirtless cover model wearing the bad boy leather coat.  Big time yum!  It ALL works for me, hence the reason it is my favorite cover for November.  What was your favorite cover this month?

    p.s. While this posted on the Thanksgiving holiday in the US, I prepared the post earlier in the week...so don't worry I'm spending it with my family, which is the thing I am most thankful for :)



    Seductive Museums-Gallery of Fine Cover Art monthly meme is hosted by Seductive Museums the last Thursday of every month.  Want to participate? Here's how:

    • Share your favorite romance novel cover from any of the romance novels you’ve read this month, and remember this has nothing to do with the actual content of the book…just the cover.
    • The romance novel can be a new release, a current release, or an older book. As long as it is in print, it is available for purchase (no preorders), and is classified as a romance then it qualifies (historical romance, contemporary romance, paranormal romance, romantic suspense, erotic romance...).
    • Present your book cover art on the last Thursday of the month (barring any special events) on your blog using the Seductive Museums icon and following these participation rules. Tell us what you love about the cover, and then link your choice to the current Seductive Museums Gallery.
    • The following week I will compile a list of the submitted book covers and I'll have a poll where you can vote for your favorites. At the end of the year I will list the top book covers for each month and you can vote for the top 5 covers of the year. Once the masterpiece of the year has been chosen we will honor the author and the cover artist with an award.



    Booklover signature (revised)
    *I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links :)

    Read more...

    Share the Love: Better World Books

    Wednesday, November 25



    I can't think of a better Share the Love post to end the month of giving this November. I am so excited about this post today!  I found out about this company when reading a local magazine that ran a feature on it's philosophy and their inspiration for all that they do.  It's honestly an idea that I love and knew that I had to share it with all of you.  That company is Better World Books.  Have you heard of it? If not, here is a brief history of how they began:

    How It All Began....Post-graduation blues

    It was a dark and stormy night in South Bend, Indiana. College friends and ultimate frisbee teammates Xavier and Kreece were sitting around after graduation wondering what to do next. The economy was in the gutter, the dot com boom had recently gone bust, and prospects for Internet businesses were slim. This didn’t bode well for guys with degrees in information systems and mechanical engineering.

    The Fortuitous Discovery

    The best gig they could find was tutoring the Notre Dame football team on the finer points of calculus and computer programming. A thankless job to be sure, and it didn't exactly pay the tab at the ol' Linebacker Lounge. Tired of seeing all the piles of old textbooks sitting around the apartment, Kreece tried a hunch and put his roommate's old books for sale on the Internet. The campus bookstore never paid much for used books, but perhaps he could sell them on the Internet and get more. (Buying and selling stuff on the Internet hadn’t gone mainstream yet). Even though it was the middle of the summer, the textbooks started selling like proverbial hotcakes. Xavier, ever the entrepreneur, knew a good thing when he saw one and proceeded to sell off his old textbooks and those of all his roommates’ who had fled and left their books behind. He became intrigued by the online book market, and wondered how he could find a lot more books.

    The beginnings of a social venture


    The following winter, Kreece and Xavier talked often about a plan to collect all the unwanted books at Notre Dame. As the spring approached, in a burst of gumption, they decided to make it happen.

    Having volunteered in the past at the local community center, they knew it had everything they needed: a great cause, a fast Internet connection, and a back room that could hold some books. Xavier convinced Jay, the center's director, to take a gamble on this idea and then they were off. 6 months later, 2,000 books had been collected and resold and $10,000 had been raised. More importantly, Kreece and Xavier found themselves with the glimmerings of a revolutionary new business model.

    A prize-winning plan

    Encouraged by the success of the book drive, the new partners decided to draft a business plan. They recruited their friend and classmate Jeff from the world of investment banking to help build the business. They envisioned a different kind of company with a built-in social benefit. By generating revenue to fund literacy, they would also earn profits to support and grow the company. And in funding literacy, they would help give struggling people the world over the skills and self-esteem necessary to thrive and succeed.

    The three founders submitted the idea to a Notre Dame University business plan competition, and won “Best Social Venture.” With $7,000 in prize money and some guidance by a competition judge named David Murphy (who would later become CEO of the company), the entrepreneurs then set off to run Book Drives for Better Lives on campuses across the country.

    The environment becomes a stakeholder too


    Always on a quest for untapped sources of used books, Xavier soon made a discovery that changed the business model – and the environment – in a major way. Every year thousands of libraries had millions of excess books as they made room for new editions. Some books sat in storage, and others were given away. But some were simply thrown out. Tossed. Abandoned to the landfills for all eternity.

    Convinced that something could be done to rescue these discarded books and help the planet a bit in the process, the founders set about partnering with librarians all across the country. Not only could they rescue books from landfills, they could also sell those books and raise money for the libraries themselves. Environmental and social impact all in the same story.

    A full-fledged triple bottom line company


    This would be no ordinary business. The founders examined all the standard business practices anew, and they considered the impact of their business on everyone involved. Not only would they harness the power of commerce in a socially and environmentally beneficial way, but they would also create an organization with a conscientious, forward thinking culture where innovation, creativity and humanitarianism would thrive.

    They imagined sharing equity among employees, offering good perks and benefits. They envisioned an open, fearless and fair place to work, where the culture was marked by diversity, equal opportunities, and a shared love of books—a place where employees and customers alike would be part of a groundbreaking community changing the world, book by book.

    Xavier, Jeff and Kreece knew that if they could create this place where everyone strived to be true to the three stakeholders of planet, people and profit that they would really be onto something special.

    Well, they did.

    And they called it Better World Books.


    Since 2002 Better World Books has converted more than 25 million donated books into over $7 million dollars to help fund literacy programs around the world, and at the same time have saved over 30 million books from landfills.  If that was not enough they've created hundreds of jobs in an area that has been hardest hit by the economy.  They call themselves the "Online Bookstore with a Soul" and I couldn't agree more. They believe that education and access to books are basic human rights, and use part of their profits to fund high impact literacy projects in the United States and around the world. You may ask yourself, "what happens to the donated books that they can't sell?" ...the answer:  they donate them to literacy partners like Books for Africa, Room to Read, and the National Center for Family Literacy to name just a few.  Because in their eyes every book has lasting value and has the potential  to help change the world. I. LOVE. THAT! 

    So the next time you are looking to purchase a used book, or textbook try Better World Books.  Every book purchased contributes to literacy throughout the world and holds the promise of a better life. And if you have old textbooks lying around (like I do) they will offer to buy them from you or you can just donate them.  One of the best parts of buying or donating with BWB is....FREE SHIPPING within the US.  That's right they will pay for the shipping to them, and are you ready for this...if you want to buy books from them and don't live in the US, it's only $3.97 for shipping worldwide!  I am stunned by this since it costs just about that much to ship a book here in the US.  If you are interested in selling/donating any of your books to them you can get free instant quotes using this link to their Buy Back program.  

    And no this is not a paid promotional post.  I sincerely love everything that they encompass and are trying to do.  Here's a what I love:  get a book you want at a great price, support charity at the same time, help the environment at the same time, and last but not least get FREE shipping.  And when I find something I love, I have to share it.  It's just how I am :)  So please help spread the word about this great company whose trying to create a better world one book at a time. Do you have something you love to share today? 

    Have a great Wednesday, have a great Thanksgiving and Share the Love!



    Share the Love is a weekly meme hosted by Seductive Musings every Wednesday. 
    • Every Wednesday post whatever it is that you love on your blog or website.
    • Then leave a link to your post in the comments on the weekly Share the Love post at Seductive Musings. If you don't have a blog, that's ok you can still share the love in your comment on the weekly Seductive Musings post.
    • What can you share...well that depends on what you love :) Here are some ideas: a new blog or website, a great recipe that is a taste bud triumph, new shoes or purse that you seriously can't afford but lust after anyway, a great love story like the ones from When Harry Met Sally, a love note to someone special in your life (or wish was), a book you just adore and can't wait to share with someone, a song or CD that plays on repeat until it's worn out, poems, pictures, videos, or even baby giggles :) I think you get the idea.


    Booklover signature (revised)








    *I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links :)

    Read more...

    Teaser Tuesday: Riding Temptation, Seduce Me in Shadow & Possess Me at Midnight

    Tuesday, November 24



    It would be better to start distancing himself from her now, but he supposed he was weak, because he just couldn't do it.  The more time he spent with her, the more he craved.   p 190 Riding Temptation by Jaci Burton (book #2 in the Wild Riders series)








    He knew, knew, that she was his mate.  If he kissed her, the words would tumble out.  As much as his instincts were screaming yes!, if he followed through, he'd tie himself irrevocably to her, to magic, and this place forever, struck with a destiny he didn't want.  p. 229 Seduce Me in Shadow by Shayla Black (book #2 in the Doomsday Brethren series)

     






    He needed to touch her, know in the most tangible way possible that she was safe, to reconnect with life.  He needed to share himself with her, bond with her as much as she would allow.  He needed to know, at least in this shadowed, predawn moment, she was his.  p. 184 Possess Me At Midnight by Shayla Black (book #3 in the Doomsday Brethren series)







    As always you can click on the covers  of these books to learn more, and/or buy these romance novels.




    *Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
    • Grab your current read. Open to a random page. Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
    • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
    • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!


    Booklover signature (revised)


    *I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links :)

    Read more...

    Sneak Peek: Hard to Hold by Stephanie Tyler

    I can't wait to read this book.  It releases today...doin' the happy dance :)  Take a look and tell me what you think.  Is Jake your kind of hero?  

    And in case you haven't noticed the upcoming guest authors in the sidebar, Stephanie Tyler will be my guest at Seductive Musings next Wednesday on Dec. 2nd.  I really can't wait for that!!! 


    Maximum danger.
    Maximum desire.
    And holding on for dear life… 

    The Special Ops hero feared nothing
    -until he met a woman too hot to hold… 

    Lt. Jake Hansen has survived some of the riskiest missions known to man. But now the wounded Navy SEAL faces his toughest job yet: Smuggling Dr. Isabelle Markham out of Africa without triggering an international incident. Not easy to do when the gorgeous hostage happens to be a senator’s daughter —and about as easy to resist as an oasis in the desert…

    If it weren’t for Jake, Isabelle would still be halfway across the world, where rebel forces left her for dead. The Special Ops warrior may have saved her life, but she doesn’t need him to protect her now. Tell that to the ruggedly handsome hunk in full battle fatigues who’s just been assigned Isabelle’s personal bodyguard. Close quarters aside, Isabelle won’t let Jake anywhere near her heart — until danger throws them together again…and nothing in the jungles of wildest Africa could prepare them for a passion this wild. This crazy. This hot….

    If you are interested you can click on the cover to learn more and/or buy this book.  And make sure to mark Dec 2nd on your calendar!







    Booklover signature (revised)

    *I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links :)

    Read more...

    Monday's Muse

    Monday, November 23

    Sorry, but the image containing the Monday's Muse has been removed from this blog so as not to violate any copyright issues.  Thanks for your understanding!

    Well it's Monday yet again and the only thing good about starting a new week is 1) it's a holiday week so it will be short, and 2) it means we get a new Muse!  

    I wanted this week's Muse to have more of a Thanksgiving theme, then I remembered my promise to feature images from the Gods of Football calendar for the rest of November....and this is as close as I could get to a cornucopia holding God of Football.  What do you think, does his cup overfloweth?  He's definitely a feast for the eyes :)  Enjoy!



    Booklover signature (revised)

    *I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links :)

    Read more...

    Winners: Sexual Secrets & A Courtesan's Scandal

    Sunday, November 22

    I have winners...so let's get right to it.

    My big thanks to Melissa MacNeal for being my guest.  And I am sure all of the winners will want to thank her too, because she decided to give away three books!

    The winners of a signed copy of Sexual Secrets are:
    1) Jody Faltys 
    2) Eva Silkka

    And the winner of a signed book from  her backlist is:

    1) Ann Warren who wins a copy of THE HAREM anthology, which includes "My Lady's Pleasure"



    And the two winners from the A Courtesan's Scandal courtesy of Pocket books are:


    1) Anita Yancy
    2) Librarypat














    To all of the winners:  If you have already won any of these books, or are no longer interested please email me and let me know so that someone else may have the chance to win, otherwise please email me using the link in the sidebar under "Novel Spotlight" with your snail mail address no later than Monday  11/30/09 otherwise alternate winners will be selected. (I'm allowing a few more days due to the holiday, but if at all possible please email me as soon as you can)




    Booklover signature (revised)

    *I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links :)

    Read more...
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    My FREE Kindle Quest

    I've wanted a Kindle for what seems like forever, but haven't been able to afford it (and that's saying something since I can justify the cost of just about ANYTHING that I really want). I've tried winning one in one of the many giveaways that have taken place over the couple of years, but with no luck :( So I've decided to take matters in hand so to speak :) I've now decided that I am going to accumulate enough Swagbucks from my Swabucks searches to buy one...so in essence my new Kindle will be FREE...funded entirely by my internet searches done on Swagbucks. I'll keep you informed of the Great Kindle Quest below (in case you're interested....if not feel free to just skip over this part, but really who wouldn't be interested in a FREE Kindle?)
    Goal: $119
    Current Swagbucks Amazon Gift Card balance: $90.00
    If you'd like to learn how you can earn Swagbucks and earn your own Amazon Gift Cards to buy books, a Kindle or other merchandise sold at Amazon contact me and I would be more than happy to tell you how I plan to go about it. (just so you know you can earn both Amazon.com and Amazon.ca gift cards on this rewards site)
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