Guest Author & Giveaway: Tamara Morgan featuring Love is a Battlefield

Friday, February 10

You all know how I love a Highlander mad love, love.  And one thing I've been wanting to attend is a Celtic festival/Highland Games.  I have never seen a real live person in a kilt and I swear to God that I will make it happen before I die.  It's a bucket list item for me :) I'm gonna Google to see where the nearest one is to me and make it happen!  Anyone else want to join me? 

Is it any wonder that when I found out about Tamara Morgan's new contemporary romance that features Highland Games kilts....that I was all over it like white on rice?  Yeah, she had me at kilts :)    Tamara is my guest today to share what she loves about Highland Games, a bit about Love is a Battlefield, the first book in the Games of Love series, and has even gifted us with a special excerpt from her new book.  Enjoy!

History and Hotties: The Scottish Highland Games

If you have never been to a Scottish Highland Games event, I have some advice for you: Go. Like right now.

Whenever I talk about the Highland Games (which is often, even before I started a series of books based on a group of Highland athletes), people have a tendency to act surprised that such a thing really exists. Big, brawny men throwing logs around? Isn’t that something that only happens in the land of sheep, bagpipes, and Gerard Butler?

I have some good news for you. It’s more common than you think—and probably in a town very near you.

There are hundreds of different Highland Game events around the world. Some of them are huge, like the Cowal Highland Gathering in Scotland, which brings in around 20,000 spectators every year. Others are more modest, like the one in my own hometown, which sees just a few thousand people (but is worth a visit just the same). I’m not going to lie and say these events are equal to one another; after all, the experience in Scotland has got to be a hundred times cooler than one in the Inland Northwest. But the sentiment is the same. And by sentiment, I mean people of all shapes, sizes, and genders swaggering about in kilts, not a hint of mockery in the air.

Some of these swaggerers are athletes, and you can tell right away, because we are talking about some crazy muscular people whose necks and heads are the same size. Others are dancers (they usually have the cutest outfits and argyle socks). Then there are the bagpipe players, who are almost always high school teenagers that I want to kiss and squeeze for their commitment to something so undeniably dorky.

The list goes on. You’ve got history buffs, harpists and other musicians, live action role player groups, gleeful spectators (that would be me), the lady who makes haggis every year, and kids running around with little wooden swords. There are Celtic items for sale and an archery tent and dogs rounding sheep into pens. Even though the lines between actual history and the traditions we follow today are rendered hazy by the entire process, it’s so much fun to be around people who dedicate their time and efforts to preserving this culture.

And if you’re like me, you don’t have to participate in any of it other than to ogle the men and clap as the pipe band makes its opening march—your support, both financial and emotional—is what’s needed to keep these traditions going strong.

Oh, and did I mention the kilts?

It takes a real man to wear a kilt. And a real woman to charm him out of it.

It might be modern times, but Kate Simmons isn’t willing to live a life without at least the illusion of the perfect English romance. A proud member of the Jane Austen Regency Re-Enactment Society, Kate fulfills her passion for courtliness and high-waisted gowns in the company of a few women who share her love of all things heaving.

Then she encounters Julian Wallace, a professional Highland Games athlete who could have stepped right off the covers of her favorite novels. He’s everything brooding, masculine, and, well, heaving. The perfect example of a man who knows just how to wear his high sense of honor—and his kilt.

Confronted with a beautiful woman with a tongue as sharp as his sgian dubh, Julian and his band of merry men aren’t about to simply step aside and let Kate and her gaggle of tea-sippers use his land for their annual convention. Never mind that “his land” is a state park—Julian was here first, and he never backs down from a challenge.

Unless that challenge is a woman unafraid to fight for what she wants...and whose wants are suddenly the only thing he can think about.

Warning: The historical re-enactments in this story contain very little actual history. Battle chess and ninja stars may apply.

And enjoy this special excerpt for Musings readers:

A few kids had gathered on the far end of the field, straddling their bicycles and looking at the pair of them with large, expectant eyes. They’d become regulars of a sort, neighborhood children who stopped by a few afternoons a week to see if any of the SHS members were out practicing. This time of year, the kids were almost guaranteed to find someone—Julian, Michael, any of the other guys who lived in the city—since the local chapter of the Scottish Highland Society used this space quite a bit. The kids were going to be surprised when they showed up in a few weeks to find the entire field transformed into a carnival of human might, athletes from all over the country gathered to dance and compete, whisky and good cheer flowing.

Although he’d seen almost every city’s version of the Scottish Highland Games, the Spokane one was Julian’s favorite annual event. It was where he’d first been introduced to the sport, the place he’d come every year with his mom and stepfather, a brawny Scotsman who taught Julian everything he knew about being an athlete.

“Throw it already!” one of the kids yelled.

Julian waved at them with a grin. “Okay, but stay very, very far back.”

He loved the way a child’s eyes opened in rapt wonder when he landed a good throw, like he was hurling the giant hammer of Thor. Like he might actually be the god of thunder. It was so easy to get lost in this sport. Crowds of people came, eager to watch something barbaric and rustic, something so time-honored he could almost imagine himself standing in Scotland a thousand years ago, fighting for the right to lead a clan of warriors to victory. Or on the beaches of Guam, where he’d been born, an ancient Chamorro warrior about to prove his might with the throw of a single spear.

He picked up the hammer. Rotating his shoulders and swinging his arms over and around his head allowed the hammer to pick up speed, each revolution pulling harder on his muscles until it was all he could do to maintain his grip. He focused his line of vision on a tall yellow weed a few hundred yards in the distance and released both the hammer and a roar that cut through the air.

Congratulations Tamara and thank you for being my guest today!  Love is a Battlefield will be released by Samhain publishing on February 14th, but is available for pre-order in case you'd like to have it in your hot little highlander loving hands for Valentine's Day.  Better yet, this would be a great calorie free alternative to chocolates :)  I don't know about you, but I would much rather have a hottie highlander heart vs. a heart full of chocolates...though in a perfect world I could have my cake and eat it too!  LOL.

If you'd like to learn more about author Tamara Morgan and the books she writes you can find her at her website, on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.  I also highly recommend checking out her Love is a Battlefield Paper Doll where you can dress your own highlander :)  Wonder what's under the kilt?  LOL, it's G rated ;)  I can't wait to see what she comes up with for the release of the second book in the Games of Love series, The World is a Stage (June 2012).

To celebrate the release of the first book in her Games of Love series, Love is a Battlefield, author Tamara Morgan would like to giveaway a digital copy of the book to one lucky Musings follower.  Here's how you can enter to win...

Ways to earn entries:
  • Mandatory:  Do you have a Highland Games story?  Have any of you been lucky enough to visit Scotland and see one?  Are you enamored of the kilt like I am?  Don't forget to leave Tamara some comment love about the excerpt or even a question about the book! (good for 1 entry)
  • Mandatory: You MUST be a Google Friend Connect (GFC) follower in order to be eligible to win (unfortunately an email subscriber, or subscription in Google reader, and a follower are not the same thing so make sure you are signed up as a follower if you'd like to win this book)
  • If you have a blog, or even if you don't, you can earn extra entries by telling your friends. If they successfully enter to win and mention that you sent them you can each earn extra entries. You can blog about it with a link to this post, post it on Facebook, Twitter, email...or even word of mouth (good for 5 entries for the referrer and the commenter for each friend) . Please note that to earn the points they must mention your GFC name so that I can match you.  
  • 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 US & International addresses
  • You must be at least 18 years or older, or of legal age in your country
  • The contest will end on February 13th at 11:59 pm EST and winner will be posted after they have been selected
  • Winner(s) will be selected using
  • The winner(s) 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
  • Winners will be subject to one copy per household, which means that if you win the same title in two or more contests, that you will only receive one copy of the title in the mail
  • 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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*Seductive Musings is an Amazon affiliate and receives a very small referral fee for purchases made via the links on the blog and through the Seductive Musings Amazon Store. Read the full disclosure here.


erin February 10, 2012 at 10:22 AM  

Thanks for the fantastic post! And I loved the excerpt!

I *really* want to go to once of these highland games! Especially b/c of all the men in kilts ;)

Thanks again for the giveaway!

Happy Friday!

The_Book_Queen February 10, 2012 at 10:59 AM  

I wish I could say I'd been to Scotland and seen the Highland Games (either there or here in the US). But I'd be lying. *sigh* Though both are high on my bucket list! :D

I should look into it..I'm pretty sure I remember hearing about a Highland Games somewhere in little ol' Utah. If so, I will have to go next time it's around. Or else plot and plan to go somewhere else! :) Sounds like tons of fun...and yes, I'd go just to oogle! :)

Yep, a man in a kilt--something that ONLY a "real" man can pull off. Who cares about pink? Real men don't wear pink, real mean wear kilts! :)

Off to add this series to my list--sounds like a great one, Tamara! :) Thanks for the giveaway opportunity as well.


Tamsyn February 10, 2012 at 11:18 AM  

Nope, never been to Scotland or seen a Highland Games. But after reading the post and the excerpt, I'm definitely planning to do so! I so love a man in a kilt. It is so sexy! Is this a series on Highland Games theme? BTW, thanks for making the giveaway international.

GFC follower/international

Tore February 10, 2012 at 6:16 PM  

I love the kilt and I would love to visit Scotland. I bet Scotland is very beautiful. Please enter me in contest. I would love to read this book.

Barbara E. February 10, 2012 at 7:00 PM  

That was a great excerpt and I'm looking forward to reading Love is a Battlefield. It sounds like a fantastic story.
I don't have a Highland Games story, but I've watched some on TV. I dream of visiting Scotland, but I haven't had a chance to yet. And yes, I am enamored of the kilt like you. I'm not sure what it is, but I really love the look of a man in a kilt.

Barbed1951 at aol dot com

*yadkny* February 11, 2012 at 12:09 AM  

Don't have a Highland Games story and I've never been to Scotland, but if I ever get the chance I am definitely going to one. I'm definitely reading Love is a Battlefield!

*GFC Follower

Sara Kovach February 11, 2012 at 11:41 AM  

I don't have a Highland Games story. I have never been to Scotland - but do want to go one day.

The excerpt is wonderful - very appealing! I'll have to look for this.

Elaine February 12, 2012 at 11:13 AM  

One of the reasons I go to Dragon*Con in Atlanta every year is there are always men wearing kilts. Some of them don't do them justice, but there always a few . . . sigh.

Carol L. February 14, 2012 at 4:09 AM  

Don't enter me in contest because I can't read the e-reads on this computer and have no e-reader. But I want Tamara to know I'll wait till it's in print to read this series.I love, love kilted Highlanders. I've never been to the games or Scotland but they're on my Bucket List for sure.Tamara, how many books do you think there will be in the series ? Thanks for the post.
Carol L
Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

Tamara Morgan February 27, 2012 at 5:41 PM  

@Carol As of right now, there are three books planned. The second one will come out June 26th (also on ebook), and third probably early next year.

Thanks for the support, everyone!

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