"If you are looking for a series that keeps you on the edge, wondering what will happen next, wondering how an author created a jaw-dropping, heart-stopping book. Then look no further. Genie has created that with this series." --Bunnies Review

Monday, April 30, 2012


I've joined the free e-book craze! "Chasing Rainbows," my novella that was published in A VALENTINE'S ANTHOLOGY, is available free on Amazon.com on April 30, May 1 and May 2.

Ironically, this romantic comedy was written at one of the darkest times of my life. I was tired of wallowing, and decided to throw a bunch of zany characters and wild situations on paper.

Fortunately for readers, I did a lot of editing to the first version. But writing this story brought me out of that dark time, and reading this story reminds me of the value of humor. 

So if you want a short, funny read, please download this novella as my thanks to you!


See Spring Fling Web Hunt for details!

Our online scavenger hunt continues with over 75 sponsors! 

Between now and May 15, visit sponsors' Web sites, answer the questions, and be registered to win great prizes. Prizes include Kindle Fires, loads of gift cards and e-books, and more!

Have fun meeting new authors or visiting old favorites!

For details and how to enter your answers, visit the Spring Fling Web Hunt page.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Thursday, April 26, 2012


Today I welcome Barbara Cool Lee as my guest! 

Barb is an award-winning author who, after extensive research, jumped into the self-publishing arena. Her first novel, THE HONEYMOON COTTAGE, jumped to #1 in the Kindle Romance Series Hot New Read, #1 in the Kindle Free Romance Series Bestseller, and into the Top 10 Kindle Paid Romance Series Bestsellers.


What is the name of your series of books? 
Hi. Thanks for inviting me to visit your blog, Genie. It's great to be here. My series is called Pajaro Bay Romances.  They are cozy, small-town romances with an undercurrent of suspense.

How many books are in the series? 
I have a dozen of them outlined, but many more ideas. The series could go on for a really long time!

What's the genre/subgenre of your series? 
Sweet romances. Most have some element of suspense, like the first one, The Honeymoon Cottage, which is about a woman whose ex-fiance stole from her employer and then disappeared--leaving behind his eight-year-old son. The local sheriff's captain helps her clear her name, figure out why the little boy was abandoned--and saves her from a serial killer by the end of the story!

What is the premise of your series? What ties it together? Are the characters related, have the same career, live in the same town, etc.?
The little coastal village of Pajaro Bay is the setting for the series. The town has a cast of quirky recurring characters, from Miss Zelda Potter, the elderly former movie star who runs the Historical Society; to Jefferson Stockdale, a long-ago architect who built the village's little cottages; to Hector Peña, the local mechanic who believes in "brownies, dude: the breakfast of champions."

Why write a series? What are the pros and cons? 
This series grew naturally from wanting to revisit the characters and setting of the first book I wrote. I feel like the people are old friends and I love "hanging out" with them. So far I haven't found any cons. I don't know if I'll ever get tired of the town, since I love the people so much.
What's your next project? Is there another series in your writing future? 
I plan to continue the Pajaro Bay series, with my next projects being a set of four novellas, "Pajaro Bay Seasons," which will be set in the four seasons (naturally) of the year:  Beach Blanket Bijou (summer), Billion Dollar Baby (autumn), Dashing Through the Surf (winter), and The Bride of Jonas Collinwood (spring).  

I also have a cozy mystery series I'm writing for next year, set in another beach town called Carina, California. This town is different from Pajaro Bay, in that it's based on Carmel, California, a very exclusive vacation spot for rich movie executives and industrialists. The heroine is a divorcee whose life has taken a radical turn after her movie-producer husband leaves her for a younger woman. She's now an outsider with the rich crowd, but she knows *all* their secrets.

I have a fantasy series as well, called The Tales of the Ariane, about a school for the magical women swordfighters who protect the royal family in a mythical island kingdom. Not sure when I'll be releasing that, since I'm so busy with Pajaro Bay.

Any contests or giveaways related to this blog post or that you are running?
Right now The Honeymoon Cottage is available for only $2.99 on the Kindle. In May, I will be doing a giveaway through Goodreads of the paperback version. If you'd like to be in the running for the free book (and lots of other free books by other authors), I encourage you to check out Goodreads.com.  It's a wonderful place for readers to learn about new books, connect with other readers, and also have the chance to win free books, too!

My web site is http://www.BarbaraCoolLee.com, where I will post the recipes mentioned in each of the Pajaro Bay books, as well as the charities which receive part of the proceeds from each book sale.

Any other information you would like to add?
Thanks for reading!

From The Honeymoon Cottage, and the cover.  The link to the book's page on amazon.com is http://bit.ly/wL0wqG

Ryan felt the hard-packed sand beneath his thin running shoes. He pounded out the miles, ignoring the warmth of the morning sun beating down on his bare back, ignoring the sweat gathering between his shoulder blades. He ran faster, as if he could outrun the thoughts crowding his mind.

Why was she here? She was carrying secrets, she and the little boy who called her Camilla, not mom. His "daddy" was missing. His daddy was her fiancé—the creep who'd ripped her off. But she was taking care of the boy, the child of the man who'd gotten her arrested. That didn't make sense. And he tried to tell himself that was the only reason he wondered. He didn't like things that didn't add up. He needed to solve the riddle.

Though Camilla and Oliver had no business being together, they matched, the two lost waifs. The sadness in the child's eyes when he talked about his jerk of a "daddy." It matched some lostness deep inside the woman. They were alike, woman and child. Both strong, self-contained, but needing help they weren't prepared to ask for.

He passed an elderly couple doing tai chi on the beach. Their matching steel gray hair shone in the sunlight, and their matching workout clothes—blue today, green yesterday, no doubt red tomorrow—made them look almost like twins. They moved as one, in the slow forms of the ancient exercise, just as they did every morning when he passed them at this spot. He briefly wondered what it would be like to be part of a matched set, but knew it wasn't for him.

He resisted the urge to glance up at the steep cliff face that overlooked the beach. He was right below the Cliff Drive cottages now, and he would be able to see their back yards if he just looked up. He didn't look up.

There was no reason to believe she was up there. She had looked tired last night, and was probably still fast asleep in the little Honeymoon Cottage at the top of the cliff. When he got to work he would call the San Jose PD, ask for a copy of the report on the embezzlement case. He tried to tell himself it was just part of his job, but he knew it was a lie. He was just plain curious about her. He hated that. He hadn't been curious about anything for months, and he needed it to stay that way.

He ran faster.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


BREATHE! I must remind myself to breathe! 

Excitement and near-panic mingle as I prepare for the release of the second book of my LEGACY series, LEGACY OF ANGELS, on May 1--less than a week away. 

Is everything done? LOL! Well, many things are in place and if I sedate the control freak part of my personality, I know whatever else needs to be done will get done. There's a bit of sunshine coming through my office window at the moment, so I think I'll go outside for a few minutes and work the stress-kinks out of my shoulders. 

One of the things I like most about a new release is going back to visit the characters as I write blog posts and other promotional materials. It's like a visit with close friends. I am reminded why I like these characters and why their story demanded to be told. 

A priest and a prostitute may seem an unlikely romantic couple. However, as the wounds of past traumas are challenged, the truth in their hearts emerges. Patrick and Claudia are perfect to help each other heal as they travel the paths toward realizing their dreams.

I hope you will join them on their journey in LEGACY OF ANGELS.

Monday, April 23, 2012


Challenge #7 from CJ

Brother and attorney, CJ, wants Dawson to help bring Marly back into the family fold. 

**CJ took an attorney's stance of trying to mediate and suggested Tallie had reasons she thought were valid. Marly listened to his spiel for about thirty seconds before she interrupted with the statement she simply needed time to sort through her thoughts. He tried to get her promise to be at Tallie's for his and Grady's birthday party, but promises had started this mess and Marly refused. He finally ended the call by saying, "We're family and always will be." **

Well, things become really explosive in Halo, and twins CJ and Grady don't get their birthday party on time. But Dawson will face other challenges to earn the honor of being married to Marly.

**Excerpt from PICTURE PERFECT LEGACY, copyright Genie Gabriel

Thursday, April 19, 2012


Today, I'm delighted to welcome Susan Lute to my LEGACY blog. I've known Su for quite a few years, and very pleased to see she is working on not just one, but two contemporary romance series--plus ideas hopping for a paranormal/fantasy series. What a busy lady!

Like all children of military families, Susan spent her childhood moving from one duty station to the next. An ardent student of human nature, she acquired a love for ancient history and myth, a fascination for the ridiculous and unusual, and is the first to admit she still collects way too much useless information. These days, when not working as a Registered Nurse, she writes whenever she can. When not writing, her favorite things to do are spend time with family, read, watch movies, garden, take black-and-white photos, travel, and remodel her house. 

What is the name of your series of books? How many books are in the series?
Almost all of my books are connected in a series. Jane's Long March Home is the first book in my FALLING FOR A HERO series. A Girl Named Jane is the prequel. I'm currently working on the next book, Bear's Full House (tentative title). There will be four books and the prequel in all. 

THE ROSEWOOD NOVELS are my second series. The Return of Benjamin Quincy is the first book. And I'm currently working on a women's fiction novel, loosely connected to The London Affair, one of three books about women who spend their lives taking care of their patients, but who don't do such a good job at home.

What's the genre/subgenre of your series?
FALLING FOR A HERO and THE ROSEWOOD NOVELS are contemporary romance. I also have a paranormal/fantasy romance that will be published later this year.

What is the premise of your series? What ties them together? Are the characters related, have the same career, live in the same town, etc?
My books are always about finding family. FALLING FOR A HERO are stories about four Marines who have spent their career, when stationed together, playing Friday night poker – Jane, Bear (Brian), Lacy, and Scott.

Why write a series? What are the pros and cons?
I think it's a matter of preference. Also series sell better to readers, so the publishing houses like them. For me, I think in terms of family and community, stories that are best told in series. As a reader, I always like a hint of previous characters' happy-ever-after.

What's your next project? Is there another series in your writing future?
In FALLING FOR A HERO, it's Bear's story. In THE ROSEWOOD NOVELS it's a reversed makeover story, or modern day charm school story. I haven't made up my mind. And down the road, starting this year, I'll be working on a post apocalyptic paranormal/fantasy series that I'm very excited about.

EXCERPT from...

  If this didn't work, the life she was so desperate to get back was headed down the toilet.

Jane parked her black Jeep next to an older white pickup. Well used and somewhat battered, it looked like she felt. Worn out and barely able to turn over her motor.

An unrelenting hammer pounded in her head, barely touched by the ibuprofen she’d swallowed earlier. Shoving a shaking hand through her unevenly cut hair, she bit back the bile threatening to crawl a burning path into her throat.

Okay, it was terror, but no one needed to know that but her.

Focus Gunny.

She took in the house, and the rundown, neglected buildings littering the yard around it. There was a long bunkhouse-like structure to one side; beyond that a huge barn and corrals that needed more than a little repair and paint.  A struggling lawn wrapped around the house. Juniper trees and an occasional tall pine grew on the hills behind the ranch house. Overhead, the sky was a clear blue. The air smelled clean - no, new and fresh, as if in this place, life had promise.
She had a hard time remembering the last time she’d felt that way. For a summer evening in early June, it was unseasonably warm in the Central Oregon high desert that bordered the Crooked River. That's what she’d heard on the radio as she’d navigated her way through the nearby town of Lone Pine.

She couldn’t bring herself to care one way or the other. There wasn't anything she wouldn't give not to be here, but she was. For one thing and one thing only - to get the help she needed to resume the life that had been shattered by a terrorist's bomb.

She used to be good at her job, at living a soldier’s life. The best, in fact. She wasn’t anymore. She’d made a holy mess of things, and the Colonel had given her one last chance to get her shit together.

Quelling the symptoms of being too long on the road without adequate food or sleep, she counted back the days. Eight since she’d had any alcohol or a cigarette. Eight long days since the Colonel had given her his last ultimatum.

Get yourself squared away. If you don't, you can kiss your upcoming re-enlistment goodbye. 

The words rang like a death knell in her ears. On this ranch, out in the middle of small town America, as far from the familiarity of a Marine base as it was possible to get, she'd been ordered to find what she’d lost. Somehow, she had to get her Marine hoorah back.

A movement by the long building caught her eye.

“Get out of the rig, Jane,” she muttered, sweat slicking the palms of her hands where they gripped the steering wheel as if it were her last lifeline. “You’re not going to save your ass by sitting here.”

By sheer determination, she uncurled her fingers and climbed out of the Jeep. Squaring her shoulders, she cautiously approached the older man watching her. He pushed his cowboy hat to the back of his head revealing short silver hair and bushy brows over canny, hazel eyes. Seams were cut into his weathered face from more than a few years spent under a hot sun.

“Can I help you, Miss?”

“I’m looking for Dr. Chase Russell.”

“You have business with the Doc?”

Jane hesitated, then nodded. There was not an inch of give in the old man’s expression. Fear stirred her nausea. He was going tell her Russell wasn’t here and send her away.

“You’ll find the Doc out back, behind the house.” The old codger pulled a rag from his pocket, swabbed at the back of his neck, before turning to go inside the faded building.

“Thanks, Mr...?”

He glanced at her. “Gus’ll do.” And with that, he was gone.

Jane followed the grass around the house. Roses bloomed next to its side. Startlingly colorful petunias nestled beneath their thorny stems. Rounding the corner, she found a punching bag suspended from an ancient, gnarled apple tree. A man, hopefully it was Russell, was giving it the old one-two punch.

He looked like he’d had plenty of practice. His muscled chest glistened with sweat. Workout pants hung indecently low on narrow hips. A growth of dark stubble shadowed a strong lower jaw.

Jane’s stomach turned over, but this time not with the nerves she’d been fighting all morning.

Any other information you'd like to add?
Thanks so much for having me at the LEGACY series blog. It's been fun! You're welcome to visit my website @ www.susanlute.com, and blog @ www.seejanepublish.wordpress.com

Monday, April 16, 2012


Challenge #6 from Collin

Though Collin doesn't specifically say so, his unstated challenge to Dawson comes after Collin has inadvertently let slip the secret of Marly's birth. 

** "I don't want to see any of my--them," Marly announced as her brother, Collin, opened the door of the pick-up and stepped out onto the snow-covered parking area.  

Marly pushed away from the table and retreated to the bedroom. 

Within seconds, Collin knocked at the door. Dawson rose slowly and stepped out onto the porch. 

"How's Marly?" Collin asked. 

"Pretty ragged." 

"Think she'll talk to me?" 

Dawson simply looked at the other man. 

"Didn't think so," Collin said.  

"Like a sensitive filly, you can gentle break her or break her spirit. I like my horses with spirit, so I give them the time to realize I'll treat them right." 

Collin's narrowed gaze met Dawson's. "You'll take care of her?" 

Slowly, Dawson nodded, knowing it wasn't her brother he needed to convince, but Marly herself. **

**Excerpt from PICTURE PERFECT LEGACY, copyright Genie Gabriel

Sunday, April 15, 2012


See Spring Fling Web Hunt for details!

Our online scavenger hunt continues with over 75 sponsors! 

Between now and May 15, visit sponsors' Web sites, answer the questions, and be registered to win great prizes. Prizes include Kindle Fires, loads of gift cards and e-books, and more!

Have fun meeting new authors or visiting old favorites!

For details and how to enter your answers, visit the Spring Fling Web Hunt page.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012


Today my guest is author, C. L. Kraemer, whose current series (or is the plural serii??) are fantasy books. I've known C. L. for a number of years, and value her ability to critique and admire her skill at writing in a number of genres. Today, she is talking about her two fantasy series. So sit back and let your imagination take flight!

C. L. Kraemer is a wanderer, a way of life started when her father served in the U.S. Marine Corp. She’s carried on the tradition, seeing most of the continental United States as well as Hawaii and Alaska.
Three contemporary romance novels written under the nom de plume, Celia Cooper, Old Enough to Know Better; Sun in Sagittarius, Moon in Mazatlan; and If Only were gifts from the writing gods. A fourth novel, Cats in the Cradle of Civilization, released in December 2008 and written as C. L. Kraemer, was her first venture to the mystery genre. Wings ePress, Inc. is the publisher of these four offerings.
Healthy Homicide, the October 2008 launch book for a new publishing house, Rogue Phoenix Press, picked up the torch again in the mystery world. In February 2010, she contributed to two Valentine’s Anthologies at Rogue Phoenix Press: A Valentine's Anthology, with a faerie story titled, "Lending Library," and A Different Kind of Valentine with a story titled, "The Prize."
She has completed the base story, Dragons Among Us, an August 2010 release by Rogue Phoenix Press, for a Dragon fantasy series. The second book of this series, Dragons Among the Eagles, was released in 2011. "Meadows of Gold," another faerie story, was released in A St. Patrick’s Day Tale, March 17, 2011. Shattered Tomorrows, a novel based on one of the first mass shootings that took place in Salem, Oregon in 1981, was released in August 2011. Also in the works is a commuter book featuring a motorcycle poker run, Joker’s Wild, and the third in the Dragon series, Dragons Among the Ice.

What is the name of your series of books? How many books are in the series?
I have two series I write: a Dragon series and a Faerie series. The dragon series titles all start with Dragons Among... My Faerie series doesn’t have a particular title but The Meadow Fae Series fits very well.

The Dragon series currently has twelve books planned. After I complete my current contracted book I’ll be diving into the third in the Dragon series--Dragons Among the Ice. In publication now are Dragons Among Us and Dragons Among the Eagles.

The Faerie series is open to how many stories will be told. Currently there are two in publication, "The Lending Library" (in A Valentine’s Day Anthology) and "Meadows of Gold" (in A St. Patrick’s Day Tale) with a third in the works.

What's the genre/subgenre of your series?
Both my series are fantasy.

What is the premise your series? What ties it together? Are the characters related, have the same career, live in the same town, etc.?
The Dragon series premise is--what if there are dragons and shapeshifters currently inhabiting earth? We’re still discovering species we thought extinct. Why not dragons? The thread running through each book is the unexpected shifting of dragon-shapeshifters and finding a solution before someone is discovered half-shifted and dissected in the name of science. Many of the characters are unaware they share the same dragon fathers. Each book will out a new clan’s secret, which will tie to the other books. The stories are scattered all over the world and eventually will be scattered all over the universe.

Why write a series? What are the pros and cons?
It wasn’t my original intent. I was going to write the ‘rest’ of the story from a piece published in 1999. My husband felt the short tale had more to it and expressed an interest in hearing a longer version. When I sat down and started writing, the characters took over and ran wild on me. I really had no intention of writing such a large book. Once the original was completed, the characters continued to hang around and demand a book about their own clan to finish telling their stories.

Writing a series offers the writer and reader the ability to explore the characters further. As a writer, one has the ability to get more in depth and share more of the characters’ lives with the reader. I find myself getting attached to some characters and phasing out others. The down side is the bibliography I have to keep to know who is who: hair color, eye color, skin tone when human then scale color, eye color and size when dragon.

With the fae, it’s a bit easier as they don’t shift, but new characters keep popping up in each story.

What's your next project? Is there another series in your writing future?
I’ll continue to write the Dragon series until all the books have been completed. I’ve got another book in mind about a mage and his personal journey to discover his magic. His expedition will be similar to Alice in Wonderland as he’ll flee through a cavern into another world which, unknown to him, is part of his test.

I do have another series planned, but it’s likely to be just short tales. I have a dozen ideas I’d like to put in print about stories garnered from my time as a copy editor on the local paper in the Antelope Valley in Southern California.

Any other information you would like to add?
I have excerpts from several of my books on my websites, www.celiacooper.com and www.clkraemer.com. Stop by and get a feel for my writing. Check out Rogue's Angels Blog on www.RoguePhoenixPress.com to keep up with my journeys as a Rogue’s Angel. I share my fantasy writings and progress on www.blogspot.com/dragons, faeries and other creatures.

Dragons Among Us by C. L. Kraemer

Aleda crawled from her sleeping bag and, individually, stretched her muscles. She’d always enjoyed camping. It was the only time she slept well. Something about the unpolluted air, the nights sounds of nature and knowing there were no other people about produced a sleeping potion no doctor could recreate. She dressed warmly against the morning chill and meandered to the stream to get water for coffee and cooking. Not having done much the day before, her ravenous hunger puzzled her.
“Must be the good mountain air.” She made coffee, scrambled eggs, and toasted bread with a slender wire camp toaster, which she held over the fire. As she sat in her chair enjoying the taste of food and quiet of the surrounding woods, hair on the back of her neck began to stand on end and her skin tingled. She shook off the feeling and poured another cup of coffee. The sensation of eyes observing her movements overpowered her senses and her amulet began humming, the sound increasing in volume with each passing minute.
“Enough!” Aleda tossed her plastic plate to the table with a clatter, stomped to her tent and retrieved a heavy coat. “I’ll nip this foolishness in the bud, right now!”
She hesitated as she started to storm from the camp. Camera. Quickly returning to her tent, she stomped away from her personal sanctuary, Nikon in hand, stomach complaining. Half a dozen paces from the camp, after wreaking a rushing flurry of birds into flight, Aleda realized, if she was to find out what was inducing her amulet to hum and her hair to stand on end, she would need to slow her pace--think before she stumbled into trouble. She proceeded into the stand of trees serving as the backdrop for her camp. Sauntering to the nearest evergreen, she placed her hand on the bark and felt a buzzing sensation tickle her palm. Aleda stumbled backward, dumbfounded by the commotion stirring within her. Logic and reason said she shouldn’t be sensing anything by touching the tree.
“This whole trip is turning out to be totally illogical.”
Aleda narrowed her eyes and concentrated on the skin of the tree. She began to see small creatures scurrying up and down the grooved surface of the bark, the scene recalling the Marquam Bridge merging into I-5 at rush hour. She pulled deeply of the air surrounding her and discovered she could taste ponderosa, yellow pine and western larch trees tinged by intermittent bursts of avalanche lily, trillium and huckleberry. Another deep breath captured faint blackberry and raspberry sensations. Standing very still and concentrating with an intensity she’d never utilized, Aleda began to recognize the buzz of life around her. In her ears, insect sounds whispered from every direction, her skin reverberated with the movement of air caused by birds flying and bees busy with spring activities. When the scene before her began to waver and tiny flashes of white light popped in her vision, Aleda realized she’d quit breathing. She pulled air into her lungs and crumbled to the soft pine needle and moss covered forest floor.
“What is happening to me? Why haven’t I seen these things before?”
“Because you were too busy ignoring them.”
Aleda loosed a shrill, piercing scream and jumping from the earthen floor into a defensive standing position. She whipped her head from side to side, her turquoise eyes narrowing to miniscule slits.
“Who’s there?” Completing a full circle, she found she was unable to locate the origin of the rumbling voice.
Silence met her question.
“Show yourself!” That’s stupid. What am I going to do if someone steps from behind a tree? Hit him with my camera? Why has my amulet stopped humming?
As she stood scanning the forest, her muscles tensed in readiness, a cacophony of rustling to her left snatched her attention. She sniffed and wrinkled her nose. There was the rotten egg smell again. Not as strong but still hanging in the air. She began an unsteady withdrawal, her breath scrapping raggedly against her throat.
The sounds of skittering pebbles and crunching dead leaves moved her direction. Aleda felt the air ripple then spotted a large, scaled, greenish-grey talon ten feet away. She opened her mouth to scream but nothing came out. The light shafts coming through the overhead forest canopy began to luminess eerily just before the blackness overtook her.

THANK YOU to C. L. for being my guest today!

Monday, April 9, 2012


Challenge #5 from Jeremiah

The challenges continue as Marly's brother, Jeremiah, ramps up the physical challenges for the honor of being married to Marly even more…

** "Grady picked a pretty wimpy challenge." Jeremiah slid into the driver's seat and started the engine as Dawson climbed in the other side of the pick-up. "Now, it takes a real man to compete in the Fireman's Olympics. Four seconds to get to the top of a two-story building, wearing full turnouts and packing two hoses." 

Jeremiah slid a glance at Dawson. "Think my sister's worth that?" 

Dawson didn't bother to look at Jeremiah. He just propped a booted foot on the dash. "The volunteer fire department in Halo does that for warm-ups. Then we get down to the serious work." 

Jeremiah's laughter filled in the cab of the pick-up. "Two weeks to practice, lawman." **

[BUT challenge met by pulling Moose from fire]

**Excerpt from PICTURE PERFECT LEGACY, copyright Genie Gabriel

Sunday, April 8, 2012


Sometimes dinner conversation at the O'Shea's is as spirited as the pre-dinner games. Let's eavesdrop on one of their Sunday discussions ...

** "Patrick, will you say grace, please?" Tallie asked. 

The quiet lasted only until Patrick, also known as my-brother-the-priest, said "Amen," then the noise level resumed. 

"Were you involved in the hostage case yesterday, Collin?" 

Collin nodded. "The guy strapped a homemade bomb to his ex-wife. The sniper team took out the perp and Grady disarmed the bomb." 

"Any more arson fires in public toilets, Jer?" 

"Not since the guy got trapped in a portable bathroom," Jeremiah said. "The chemicals he was using to start fires exploded all over him along with the, um, contents of the comfort room." 

Laughter followed his comment. 

"Couldn't you boys have gone into safer careers?" Tallie asked. "Perhaps be attorneys like CJ?" 

The brothers rolled their eyes. "You didn't tell her about the near riot over the pornography case?" 

"Rubber bullets and no jail time," CJ responded. "Wasn't worth mentioning." 

"How about you, Marly?" Tallie forced a smile and turned to her daughter. "How are your cases going?" 

"The kids staying with their families outnumber those going into foster care."  

"You see?" Tallie said. "Some good news. Did that baby go home yet?" 

"We're still looking for the birth mother in the Midassen case." 

"The cops have already closed the criminal case. What's taking you so long?" Collin teased. 

"Mother Nature helped out by burying the perp in an avalanche. On the other hand, I was waiting for Deputy Browning to solve the case of the missing gorilla suit for some assistance in pursuing the best lead on the mother."  **

** Excerpt from PICTURE PERFECT LEGACY, copyright Genie Gabriel

Friday, April 6, 2012


Today, I'm blogging at Friday Firsts, Rebecca J. Clark's blog.

I share the first five sentences of the first book of my LEGACY series, PICTURE PERFECT LEGACY,  as well as what happened to the first manuscript I wrote, the first thing I'd do on a "free" afternoon, and the first thing I'd buy if I won the lottery.

Hope you can join the fun!

Thursday, April 5, 2012


Today, I'm so pleased to welcome DaniJo Avia! As we have exchanged e-mails, I feel I have gotten to know DaniJo a bit better. I love her enthusiasm in writing THE DESTINY series. "Friends and family… people you want to know and love to call your friends," she says about the series. 

So settle in, find out more about DaniJo and her books, and ask questions if you have them!


Reflecting back on my life I realize that I’ve always expressed my creativity in writing. Be it poems, songs or short stories. Somehow, as I grew up I left that creative expression behind.

I left Corporate America in part because I needed to find and express my creative voice. Several years before I left, I found that a change had come over me as I formulated and crafted memos. I began to focus on hearing what needed to be said, on communication rather than dictating. As I explored this new way of writing, I found that I was required to leave the mechanics of spelling and formatting behind to focus on the message that needed to be communicated, even when the message wasn’t clearly communicated to me. I have discovered that the training I received by embracing this new style of crafting a memo has proven invaluable in rediscovering and developing my creative voice.

It’s taken all this time for me to move out of the mold that working for a Fortune 500 Company conformed me into. To hear something different than business and to write what I hear. While I loved my job and the company I worked for, I’ve found that I am happiest moving in a natural work rhythm; listening, hearing, deciding, acting. Moving forward without the pressure to conform into someone else’s image of me.

For a variety of reasons my husband and I have chosen for my novels to be written under a pen name. I love the name I was given at birth, and if you know anything about me, you know names and their meanings are important to me. So you know that DaniJo Avia was selected with a great deal of care and thought.

Beyond that – I am a Life Coach (specializing in Personal Coaching, Executive Coaching and Divine Purpose Coaching). I am the wife of an amazing man; we have no children but have collected many friends and acquaintances over the years. We live in the country in the Greater Seattle area with our dog. Among other things we both love to travel, read and watch movies.

What is the name of your series of books? How many books are in the series? 
The Destiny Series. At this point books one and two are published, working on LEGACY (book three) and CRUSHED (book four). Not sure how many books there will be in the series but a fifth is stewing on the back burner…

What's the genre/subgenre of your series? 
Contemporary Romance.

What is the premise your series? What ties it together? Are the characters related, have the same career, live in the same town, etc.?
Friends and family… people you want to know and love to call your friends. People whose lives you like to be involved in. Each book follows our friends as they address issues we each face in life, and the choices they make.

Why write a series? What are the pros and cons? 
Does it count if I say that I never planned it this way??? It just kind of happened? All of the books stand alone, but what I am finding, at least with the first three, is that more of the backstories of the three couples are revealed as the series progresses.

What's your next project? Is there another series in your writing future? 
Let me finish with the Destiny series and then see what begs to be put on paper… But to be honest with you, my favorite books have always been those that invite me back, not just because of the story, but because I get to visit with my friends, even if they aren’t front and center… so.. kinda thinking I like the whole series thing… we’ll see…

Any contests or giveaways related to this blog post or that you are running?
Marketing… need to turn my brain that direction… but honestly… just too into writing at the moment… watch my blog for updates: www.DaniJoAvia.com  or Like me on Facebook!

Any other information you would like to add?
Ummm… questions anyone???

From Discovery – Book Two of the Destiny Series:

North Shore, Oahu, Hawaii

Two weeks from today….


Katie breathed deeply of the fresh sea air. Luxuriating in the moist air, once again thankful to be out of the aired air of Egypt. 

Stroking deeply, she propelled herself and her surfboard after Peter. Greg already knew how to surf, but they had hired the instructor for the day for her benefit.  While Greg could have taught her, he had never surfed in Hawaii and preferred someone with local experience to guide them.

Before striking out to sea, they had decided that this was their last run. They had been able to talk Peter into this more advanced area – more because of Greg’s abilities than her own, she thought. Though, to be fair, she had impressed herself.

Peter pulled up and turned his board to face the beach, as she did the same. Sitting up, she lifted her face toward the clear blue sky and the lowering sun. Again, breathing deeply of moist air she mentally thanked her cousin for giving her the excuse to travel to Hawaii.

Opening her eyes, she shifted her gaze to Greg, floating on a board beside her, positioned slightly ahead of her and to her left. He caught her eye and the smile that had been on his face transformed into a grin.

She wasn’t close enough to see his gray eyes, but she knew they would be sparkling with happiness. They had been all day.

Greg signaled that the next wave was coming and that he was going to catch it. Katie looked over her shoulder and started to catch the wave as well, but as Greg sprang up on his board, she decided to drop out and watch him instead, admiring his athletic grace as he rode the wave toward the beach.

She wasn’t surprised that Peter dropped out as well; had expected it actually. He’d been dogging her all day, watching out for her. Far from being upset that she’d been singled out, she felt a freedom in his careful oversight of her.

Earlier, Greg had told her that if Peter had been applying for one of his trainer positions, he would have hired him on the spot. Peter had every characteristic Greg looked for in a trainer. The least of which was having the ability to teach.

Greg was always careful of her and was always very aware of her. The fact that he was willing to allow Peter to supervise her lessons and her safety spoke volumes to Katie about his confidence in Peter.

It also told her much about Greg and how he ran his business.

Watching him interact with Peter, she knew that he valued Peter’s experience and teaching style. Greg didn’t try to take over, and that told her that he did not micromanage his trainers but empowered them to connect with their clients to teach them in whatever manner best suited the client.
Peter’s whoop of approval at Greg’s ride snapped her back to the present. Pumping her hands high over her head, she cheered Greg’s ride as well.

Still sounding like the cheering section at the World Cup, she turned and shared her joy with Peter. It was difficult to communicate across the distance between them, but a sense of camaraderie that had been absent from her life for far to long had developed between the three of them. She knew he was just as pleased with Greg’s ride as she was.

Turning her attention back to the beach, she could see that Greg had planted his board in the sand and now stood looking out at her, obviously impatient for her to join him. And suddenly, she was just as impatient to get to him.

Focusing on the waves behind her, she saw a gentle swell rising. Perfect! She signaled Peter. As he nodded his approval, she flipped onto her stomach and began pulling herself through the water with powerful, quick strokes. The day’s lessons and advice playing over and over in her head.

Feeling the wave gather beneath her, she sprang to her feet, concentrating on the board beneath her, on the way it moved, how she was balanced.

The blue-green water flashed by her and the late afternoon sun gilded and defined the blown glass edges of the swell beginning to rise above her. It was a beautiful wall of living color.
She watched, mesmerized, as the sharp edges of the wave softened and then turned to foam, edging the wave with intricate fringe. The white melded into a deep seafoam green, reminding her of liquid mercury, alive and moving.

The sun shone through the center of the wave, creating a horizontal band of molten gold which made her catch her breath in awe. The wave was lit from within, light bouncing back and forth across its surface.

Beneath the band of light, the color blended from gold to the impossible green that candy makers use to entice their patrons, then to a blue they also envied but could never copy exactly. The blue gave way to the flatter portion of the wave where it reflected back the gold, breaking it up with glints of a deep jade green.

Suddenly, her board was gone, no longer beneath her feet, no longer supporting her. Before she could even breathe, she found herself falling forward into water that was a foreboding blue, devoid of all light. 

From far away she heard Peter shout her name. Then the ocean opened up and the dark tumbling water pulled her down into its murky depths.