Friday, September 23, 2022

Book Blitz: The Quick Guide to Classroom Management by Richard James Rogers #promo #nonfiction #education #rabtbooktours @RABTBookTours @BookBuzznet @richardjarogers

 

45 Secrets That All High School Teachers Need to Know


Non-Fiction, Education

Published: January 31, 2021 (3rd Edition)

 

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A no-nonsense guide to effective classroom management in a high school setting.

This is the much anticipated Third Edition of the original award-winning volume. Fully indexed and updated, this edition covers the same topics as the First and Second editions but with new information for 2021 onwards. The book begins by examining key mistakes teachers make in the 'direct realm' - i.e. when interacting face-to-face with students. These first three chapters cover rapport-building, active-engagement and behavior management as it applies in a high-school setting. Following this, the book expansively covers a range of tips, techniques and tools to engage advanced, exam-level learners and to effectively enhance the teaching process via the use of technology. The book concludes with an often overlooked sphere of teaching: how to work effectively with colleagues and parents (very powerful when strategized correctly). Bonus material on the unique challenges of teaching overseas is provided in a plenary chapter. This edition of the book has been exhaustively proofread and indexed, and is of a much-higher quality than can be attributed to the First and Second editions.



About the Author

Richard James Rogers received both his bachelor’s degree in Molecular Biology and his PGCE in Secondary Science Education from Bangor University (Wales, UK). This was an excellent foundation for the steep learning curve that would follow as he pursued his career as a teacher of Science and Mathematics at UK state schools, and afterwards at elite international schools in Asia. He started teaching professionally in 2005, but he considers his teaching career to have started back in 1995: when he was a Lance Corporal and cadet instructor in the Army Cadet Force. He has taught IGCSE German, Key Stage 3 and 4 Science and Mathematics and three subjects at ‘AS’, ‘A2’ and IB Diploma level: Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics. He also went on to lead a team of students to win the Thailand Tournament of Minds Championship in 2012 and has been an active educational blogger, columnist and online pedagogical content editor since 2010.

Richard’s debut book, The Quick Guide to Classroom Management: 45 Secrets That All High School Teachers Need to Know, is a widely acclaimed practical teaching manual for Newly Qualified Teachers and offers an overview of what, in his experience and research, works best when it comes to engaging young learners and being happy in your job as a high school teacher.

Richard’s second book, The Power of Praise: Empowering Students Through Positive Feedback, focuses on long-term feedback strategies that schools and individual teachers can use to create innate drive, enthusiasm and passion for learning. The core theme of the book is the power that meaningful praise can have in character-building: effects that will last long-after a child’s schooling is complete.

Richard is a regular contributor to UKEdChat.com and features in their podcasts and online magazines. He actively writes about a range of different issues to do with teaching at this blog: richardjamesrogers.com.


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Thursday, September 22, 2022

Book Blitz: Intentional Self-Love by Alyssa R. Webb-McCune, MA, LPC #promo #selfhelp #nonfiction #IntentionalSelfLove #AlyssaRWebbMcCune #rabtbooktours @RABTBookTours

 

Self-Help / Mental & Spiritual Healing

Date Published: July 14, 2022

 

Much has been said about self-love and its importance in healing and integrating responsibilities with a functional life. There are many ways to enhance self-love, so many it can be a bit overwhelming! Oftentimes, we deserve better than what we are experiencing before beginning this self-love journey. We get used to just functioning rather than living in a way that is also fulfilling. This workbook takes you through six steps on improving your self love journey that can make a difference today!

 

 

About the Author

Alyssa Webb-McCune, the founder of Natural Balance Counseling, has been a part of the Houston community for more than a decade. She understands the unique variety of her neighbors and tailors her style for each individual that walks through her door. It is her passion to provide a safe and supportive space for both clients and clinicians alike to grow and be the best version of themselves possible. She understands that going to counseling for the first time, or trying to start back after a rocky first attempt, can be intimidating and she works hard to make sure each person feels comfortable and heard, in a caring and judgement-free space.

 

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Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Book Blitz & New Release: The Outlaw Gillis Kerg by Mike Murphey #promo #scifi #giveaway #releaseday #TheOutlawGillisKerg #MikeMurphey #rabtbooktours @RABTBookTours @BooksMurphey


Physics, Lust and Greed Series, Book 4


Sci-Fi

Date Published: 09-22-2022

Publisher: Acorn Publishing


In the mid-21st Century, a top-secret consortium of corporations and governments have made time travel possible, only to realize that intruding on the past has been a terrible mistake.

At the program’s outset, a thousand scientists, engineers and support staff were confined to a subterranean complex where a corporate contributor specializing in artificial intelligence equipped apartments with Happy Home Companion software.

Time traveler Marta Hamilton had little enough tolerance for other people intruding in her life, much less a software Dear Abby, so Marta bullies her Happy Home Companion into silence.

At last convinced of the grave dangers time travel represents, government overseers suspend operations. Only the Happy Home Companions remain.

Marta and fellow traveler Marshall Grissom hope they can finally leave the past behind, but when a federal judge is murdered, they understand their vulnerability to horrible manipulations by future counterparts.

Marta and Marshall return to the Arizona desert where they confront a Happy Home Companion cult of vengeance, the outlaw Gillis Kerg, and an evangelical zealot waging a war on science.

 

About the Author

Mike Murphey is a native of eastern New Mexico and spent almost thirty years as an award-winning newspaper journalist in the Southwest and Pacific Northwest. His debut novel, Section Roads, has been recognized by Indie Reader Discovery Awards, Reader Views Reviewers Choice Awards, The IAN Book of the Year Awards, the Somerset Contemporary Fiction Awards, and the Independent Publishers Book Awards. His novel, The Conman has been recognized by the International Book Awards, the eLit Awards and the Manhattan Book Awards. His award-winning Physics, Lust and Greed Series includes Taking Time,  Wasting Time, Killing Time and  The Outlaw Gillis Kerg. “We Never Knew Just What It Was… The Story of the Chad Mitchell Trio” is his first non-fiction work. Mike loves fiction, cats, baseball and sailing. He splits his time between Spokane, Washington, and Phoenix, Arizona.

 

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Book Blitz & New Release: Adam by Sydney Jane Baily #AdamDiamondsoftheFirstWater #SydneyJaneBaily #historicalromance #releaseday #rabtbooktours @RABTBookTours @BookBuzznet


(#3 Diamonds of the First Water Series)


Historical Romance, Victorian Romance, Regency Romance, Steamy Romance

Date Published: September 22, 2022

Publisher: WOLF Publishing


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In this sizzling early Victorian romance by USA Today bestselling author Sydney Jane Baily the heir to an earldom must take a suitable wife... unless he falls for a middle-class governess with a shadowy past.


Lord Diamond leads a charmed life. The only brother amongst four sisters, he is touted as the best thing since frothy syllabub. Every young lady in London wants his leg shackled to hers. Summering in Bath brings freedom from the marriage-minded Mayfair mothers and reaps a new crop of single females. Problem solved!

Mrs. Alice Malcolm has an ideal situation tutoring two young ladies in an upper-class home. A clean room, a roof over her head, and best of all, she is safe from the demands and threats of her former brother-in-law. What does it matter if she is living a lie?

While Adam pursues Alice to be his mistress—anything more is unthinkable—she has only two options... ignore his amorous advances or flee for her life. Will pride, prejudice, and secrets keep these two out of paradise?


Engaging characters, attention to period detail, and passionate romance with a touch of intrigue — you’ll find it all in the stories by USA Today bestselling author Sydney Jane Baily.

 

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author Sydney Jane Baily writes happily-ever-after historical romance set in Regency and Victorian England, late 19th-century America, the Middle Ages, and the Georgian era.

Born and raised in California, she earned degrees in English and history on the East Coast and has traveled the world, spending a lot of exceedingly happy time in the U.K. where her extended family resides, eating fish and chips, drinking shandies, and snacking on Maltesers and Cadbury bars. Sydney currently lives in New England with her family — human, canine, and feline.

At her website, SydneyJaneBaily.com, you can learn more about her books, read her blog, sign up for her newsletter (& get a free book), and contact her. She loves to hear from her readers. To be notified of her new releases, please follow Sydney on BookBub or Amazon. Or you can connect with her on Facebook.


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Book Tour & Book Review: The Glass Tree by Michael J. Manz #blogtour #bookreview #giveaway #historical #suspense #thriller #TheGlassTree #MichaelJManz #rabtbooktours @RABTBookTours

 

Historical/Suspense ; Suspense/Thriller ; Adult Literary

Date Published: 09-01-2022

Publisher: Endicott Street Press


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Paris, 1954. Eli Cole, American attachĂ©, wants only one thing: to avenge his wife’s murder. But the trail has gone cold. After two years, drinking to his beloved Liana’s memory is all he has left — until the secrets she took to the grave come back to shatter them all. A hidden photo, a Gestapo file, an unsent letter: these are some of the clues Eli must piece together if he is to understand Liana’s secret life, and her mysterious mission. But the clock is ticking. Powerful new enemies are out to give Eli a one-way ticket back to the United States — in a pinewood box.

With the help of Liana’s father and sister, an old war buddy come abroad, and a cunning teenage girl, Eli unravels the events that led to his wife’s death. But getting justice won’t be easy. The more Eli reveals of Liana’s secret past, the more his devotion to her is tested by her deceit. Can Eli allow himself to recognize the entirety of the woman he married? Will Liana’s last art piece, a spectacular glass tree, give Eli the assurance he needs to continue believing in the sanctity of love?

The Glass Tree is a fast-paced, unpredictable mystery, and it is also the story of one man’s attempt to untangle the complexities of betrayal, love and forgiveness.



Review
A griping historical suspense. 
It twists and turns, giving historical references and bringing us into the time while building the suspense and thrills. 

If you like a smart twisty thriller with many historical nuances and a true testament to the time added with lots of excitement, get the book. You will love it, too.


About the Author

Michael J. Manz lives in Massachusetts’ Pioneer Valley and is a rare bookseller by trade. Except for a few years spent in Chicago, he is a lifelong New Englander. The only place he’d rather be, at least some of the time, is Paris, where he has been known to wander the streets in search of old bookshops, great cafes and forgotten bars. He is the past organizer of the Protagonists and Procrastinators writers’ group and has from childhood been scratching away at some kind of story or another. Michael holds a BA in English from Keene State College. The Glass Tree is his first novel.


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Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Book Blitz & New Release: War in the Hearts of Men by Eli Coberly #promo #transformational #spiritual #releaseday #WarintheHeartsofMen #EliCoberly #rabtbooktours @RABTBookTours @PublishingAcorn


Transformational; Spiritual

Release Date: September 21, 2022

Publisher: Acorn Publishing


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In War in the Hearts of Men, Eli Coberly details his lifelong quest to understand the Maya culture and its impact on the present. The author shares his discovery of the artistry of stone-carved symbols on the heels of his extensive travels to both Central and South America. In this intimate and inspirational text, Coberly contrasts contemporary life with the past as he explores spiritual rituals that formed the framework of the ancient Maya culture. War in the Hearts of Men, which identifies and interprets the historical ideologies that suppressed the feminine, displayed the cultural imbalances caused by rampant colonialism, and resulted in the subjugation of Native populations over many centuries, furthers the journey of enlightenment sought by those wise enough to learn from the past.

 


About the Author

Eli Coberly is a world traveler and seeker of truth through adventure. At seventeen, he left his small Pacific Northwest town to fulfill his dream of becoming an Army paratrooper. At twenty, he was honorably discharged and began his search for a new dream. Eli’s writing has taken him worldwide to explore a few of the bigger questions of our human existence, and his prophetic worldview combines military service, counterculture, and the anthropology and archeology of the world’s religious symbols. He has studied the migration of the indigenous and ingested their medicine, absorbed their art, and embodied their cosmovision. A yoga therapist, Eli has been a student of yoga for over a decade. When he isn’t writing or practicing yoga, Eli can be found examining Tibetan Buddhist tradition, sitting in ceremony with Maya priests, and traversing caves deep in the Belize jungle. He currently resides in Northern California.


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Monday, September 19, 2022

Book Blitz & New Release: Moby Plays the Flute by Eeha Bhatt #promo #releaseday #giveaway #childrensbook #MobyPlaystheFlute #EehaBhatt #rabtbooktours @RABTBookTours @LlcTabletop


 

  Children's Fiction / Contemporary

Date Published: 09-20-2022

Publisher: Tabletop Publishing

 

Moby Plays the Flute is a heartwarming story of a young girl who learns the importance of perseverance and hard work after her father, a U.S. Marine, must leave home for a year. His last parting gift, a simple flute, becomes the tool that will ultimately show Moby what hard work is and how it can pay off BIG time.

This is more than just a children’s picture book. This story is relatable to kids of all ages as they learn, grow, and find the things in life that they are passionate about. Passion does not come without effort; something all kids learn at some point in their lives. Find out how Moby finds her passion and her resilience in Moby Plays the Flute.


About the Author

Eeha Bhatt devoted herself to writing and drawing during her school years. Many of her stories were selected for the school magazine as well as many drawings for the kid’s exhibition organized by Kala Bhavan, Visva Bharati University.

Ever since she aspired to write stories for children and convey the messages to be better with each step towards betterment. Her stories are based upon her own experiences in life, that have helped her to always move forward. She writes to tell this message to all of the kids out there.

Eeha Bhatt is a self-taught part-time artist and a full-time Japanese language interpreter/translator and teacher. She graduated from the Visva Bharati University (University in India opened by the Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore and also where Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen comes from) with a degree in Japanese Language. She completed her Masters in Japanese Language from Jawaharlal Nehru University in 2012.

Bhatt has published her artwork in Dragonfly Hopeworks's 2018 magazine of Howards County, Maryland, US. She has won an exhibition opportunity in Greenbelt Arts Center, MD, US, and an award for a Tsunami Picture collage/story at Kizuna India organized by Japan. She is currently located in Dallas, Texas, aspiring to be a full-time artist and story writer.


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Teaser Tuesday & Excerpt: Grimm by Harley Wylde #promo #mcromance #suspense #romance #GrimmDixieReapersMC #HarleyWylde #rabtbooktours @RABTBookTours @HarleyW_Writer @ChangelingPress

 


(Dixie Reapers MC)


Motorcycle Club Romance, Suspense, Action & Adventure

Date Published: 9/23/2022

 

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Oksana – Growing up in the Bratva wasn’t easy, especially for a woman. At twenty, I thought I’d get married soon. Start my own family. All approved by my family, of course. It never occurred to me, my father would implicate me in his shady dealings, or that I’d be punished in the most severe way. So I run, with the help of a friend, and go straight to the Dixie Reapers. I don’t know what I expected. Certainly not for a sexy man to make my heart flutter, or make me wish for things I shouldn’t. I’m pretty sure I’m falling for him. Grimm will do his best to keep me safe, but who’s going to protect my heart?

Grimm –The Bratva is in my rearview, where I want them to stay. I haven’t heard from my last remaining relative in a long, long time. So when Nikolai sends Oksana to me, it’s a bit of a shock, to say the least. But the more I get to know her, the more protective I feel. In my gut, I know she’s mine. The Bratva can try to take her if they want… anyone who comes for my woman better have their affairs in order. I’ll put every last one of them in the ground.


WARNING: Grimm is part of the Dixie Reapers MC series and is intended for readers 18+ due to adult situations and bad language. Sensitive readers should proceed with caution. No cliffhanger, no cheating, and a guaranteed HEA.



EXCERPT


All rights reserved.

Copyright ©2022 Harley Wylde


Oksana

No matter how scared I felt, I couldn’t show it. Growing up in the Bratva, I’d learned early these men fed on fear. The more terrified you were, the more empowered they became. I’d stand here, listen to everything they said, then once I was alone again, I’d throw up and bawl my eyes out.

Nikolai did his best to shield me, but it wasn’t enough. Not this time. Feliks may have softened since marrying Raina, but to the rest of us, he remained a monster. And now, he held my life in his hands. Why? Because my father decided to gamble with the Bratva and lost in a big way. Not only had he lost his ranking and had his wealth stripped, but he’d forfeited his family as well.

My sixteen-year-old sister couldn’t contain her tears. They ran freely down her cheeks as she sobbed and wrapped her arms around her waist. Feliks seemed unmoved, flipping through the papers on his desk. What would become of us? I’d already heard what happened to our mother. Would our fate be the same?

“Yulia Romanov, you will study at the prestigious girls’ academy downtown until your eighteenth birthday, at which time, the Vor will select a husband for you.” Feliks didn’t look up as my sister cried even harder. “You will leave immediately, and we will provide clothing.”

I straightened my spine and waited. At twenty, my options were limited. If he didn’t marry me off to someone, then I’d most likely be put to work in the brothels. Neither fate seemed like something I’d survive.

“Oksana Romanov.” Feliks lifted his gaze and leaned back in his chair. I flinched slightly, and he smiled. The bastard. “Your father speaks highly of you. According to him, he could have never accomplished so much without the help of his beloved Oksana.”

My eyes went wide. What the hell was he saying? I’d never helped my dad!

“Many people were hurt due to your father’s actions. He’s paid the price for his crimes. Now it’s your turn.” Feliks motioned to someone behind me. I didn’t get a chance to turn around before my wrists were bound at my back. My heart slammed against my ribs, and I fought to stay upright. Black dots swam across my vision, and I sucked in a deep breath. What was going on? “Oksana Romanov, you will be beaten, sold, and used until the day you die. It’s no less than you deserve, considering what happened to the women you lured into your father’s trap.”

No. I hadn’t! I’d have never done such a thing. I knew my pleas would fall on deaf ears. Protesting wouldn’t do me any good. He’d never believe I was innocent of the crimes he said I’d committed. Yulia started to scream as they dragged me from the room. The men guided me to a car and shoved me into the backseat. The sound of the door slamming shut felt like the end of my short life.

Did Nikolai know what they planned to do? Had he tried to stop them?

The buildings passed in a blur until we reached the warehouse district. The men pulled me from the vehicle and shoved me inside. The air smelled dank and musty. The vast space held only a table, chair, and a ratty-looking mattress. One of the men lifted a hunk of my hair and sniffed it, a lecherous smile curving his lips.

“Are you a virgin, little one?”

I swallowed hard and nodded. Lying wouldn’t get me anywhere. But maybe if they knew, they wouldn’t rape me. I’d earn a high price if they sold me instead. It didn’t mean I’d get away from the beating Feliks said I’d receive.

The second man smacked the other one in the chest. “You know we can’t ruin her. Not like that. She’s too valuable.”

“Only if she retains her teeth and we don’t leave many scars.”

The man yanked my head back, craning my neck. “There’s much we can do and still fetch a decent price for her. Shall we begin?”

I refused to cry. I wouldn’t beg. No, I’d remain silent and take whatever they dished out. I’d survive as long as I could. The moment Yulia heard of my death, she’d give up. I couldn’t allow that to happen. No matter what it took, I’d keep living. Even when I didn’t want to anymore.

The man licked my face, and I inwardly cringed. My outward appearance didn’t change. Not so much as a single shift in expression. I’d learned well, and I’d use every skill I had to keep them from knowing how scared I was right now.

“We may not be able to pop your cherry, but we can do anything else,” the man said, his voice a low growl in my ear. “Ride your ass. Fuck your throat. By the time we’re finished, you’ll be broken.”

The other man reached for me, gripping the top of my dress, and ripping it down the middle. I’d never been very big up top and hadn’t worn a bra. My breasts spilled out, and the bastards groped me, hard enough I knew they’d leave bruises. I bit my tongue until I tasted blood. Whatever they did to me, I’d take it. What other choice did I have?

The lights flickered, then went out. The men started cursing and stumbled around. I heard one of them crash into something, possibly the table. It got quiet. Too quiet. Was it a trap? Or they were really gone? Without either of them holding me, I could flee… if I had any idea of where to go. I couldn’t see even an inch in front of my face.

Hands grabbed hold of me, and I tensed until I heard a voice whisper in my ear.

“Follow me, Oksana.”

Nikolai! I staggered as he led me through the warehouse. The cool air hit me when we stepped outside. I didn’t have the time to be embarrassed over the fact Nikolai would see me half-naked. He cursed when he saw that they’d done and slipped out of his jacket. He untied my wrists and helped me cover myself.

“I’m sorry I was late. Come on. You need to leave town.”

“Where will I go?”

“South. Alabama.” Nikolai opened a car door, and I got in. He didn’t speak again until we’d left the city limits. After another two towns, he pulled over and shut off the engine. “I have a vehicle ready for you. It’s nothing fancy, but it will get you where you need to go.”

“What’s in Alabama?” I asked.

“The Dixie Reapers. More importantly, my cousin is there. Ivan Volkov, but he goes by Grimm.”

“You’re sending me to your family?”

“You’ll be safe, Oksana. He won’t let anyone hurt you. I’m going to give you a note. When you see him, make sure he reads it.”

 


 

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Book Tour & Book Review: Brave Women at Work #blogtour #bookreview #giveaway #nonfiction #business #rabtbooktours @RABTBookTours

 

Nonfiction / Business

Date Published: October 11, 2022

Publisher: Hunter Street Press


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Brave Women at Work: Stories of Resilience is a collection of real-life stories from women just like you who have been resilient in the face of difficult challenges. Each of the authors' stories illustrate how you can face tough odds and still find career success and happiness. Whether it be health challenges, burnout, broken relationships or confidence issues, each author shows us how we all have wells of resilience we didn't even know we had. Turn to this book as a source of inspiration and hope that you too can rise above your challenges.

 




Review
This is a great collection of stories from some great powerful women. They share their stories of ups and downs and how they fought the fight to make it to where they are. 
Each has its own voice based on the woman, I definitely had my favorites but it really is a solid collection with something for everyone.
Well organized so that each story flowed seamlessly. 


 

About the Author

Jen Pestikas is a type-A super achiever. She always got straight A’s and was devastated if a B showed up on her report card(s). Jen set the bar high and strove to check all the boxes in what defined a successful life. Her super achieving nature shaped her career in the corporate world.

After twenty years in corporate, climbing the ladder in financial services from a bank teller to a Senior Vice President in a Chicago land financial institution and doing ‘all the right things’, Jen’s health plummeted. In 2019, her thrusters burnt out, her body stopped functioning, and emotionally, she was a shell of her former self with no passion nor direction.

Jen’s time of healing that followed was an arduous journey and a gift. A gift she had to give herself, her husband, children, and her life. She was forced to acknowledge that lives weren’t perfect. She did not have to check all life’s success boxes, and she did not have to be super woman. For the first time, Jen finally understood what she wanted. Jen knew she wanted to give back to women so they could avoid the traps of overachieving, perfectionism, and not speaking their truth.

Jen has a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Lake Forest Graduate School of Management, a Bachelor of Arts (BA) from Indiana University and is coaching certified from the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC).

Jen has developed the Brave Women at Work brand, hosts the Brave Women at Work podcast, and offers coaching services to women who are looking to get to the next level in their careers. You can listen to the Brave Women at Work podcast on Apple, Google, Stitcher, and Spotify. Connect with Jen at www.bravewomenatwork.com or via LinkedIn.

 

Contributing Authors

Hope Mueller, Yalonda Brown, Shelia Higgs Burkhalter, Kim Ellet, Betsy Gornet, Georgie Komeiner, and Trisha Tayan


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Book Blitz & Excerpt: Ruby Red by D.L. Croisette #promo #romance #newadult #RubyRed #DLCroisette #rabtbooktours @RABTBookTours @BookBuzznet @dlcroisette

 

 

Contemporary Romance, New Adult

Date Published: May 2022

Publisher: Champagne Book Group


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Sometimes you find love only after you lose everything else.


One night stands only need apply.

Ali Stinson is having a bad day. Her afternoon tryst has been interrupted (before they got to the good part) to discover her investment manager has run away with all her money. Now she has to keep up appearances with her high society friends, find a dress for an upcoming charity event and not fall in love with Sam, the cute bartender, who insists on helping her. Thing is she's 90% sure she doesn’t want help. Adulting is hard.


Looking for work, not love.

Sam Freemont is having a strange day. He was in the middle of the best kiss of his life when his boss walked in and halted the fun. Not helping with the low profile he's trying to maintain. Now he can't get Ali off his mind or out of his dreams. Good thing she's a regular at the swanky resort he just started working at. Gives him time to find a way back to her lips. Or better yet, into her heart.


Ruby Red is a riches-to-rags, hidden identity slow burn contemporary romance published with Champagne Book Group



Excerpt


She hadn’t really wanted another martini, but she’d decided to force Mr. Friendly Bartender to talk to her. She nursed her drink until Sarah left him alone, then drained the glass. Now she had a reason to lure him in.

“I’ll have another.” She shook her now empty glass. “Please. A

“A vodka martini with a slice of lemon,” he finished for her.

Though surprised he was aware of her drink order, she reminded herself this was his job. “Yes, that’s right.”

Ali sat at the resort bar, ogling the pool boy—or was he a bartender? She was confused—as he vigorously brandished the martini shaker. His muscles flexed with the to-and-fro of the exercise. The blur of fine fingers made her wonder exactly how much one could consume before they got alcohol poisoning.

The shaker paused. “Bartender.”

She raised her gaze from the silver cylinder and met his glittering eyes. Had she said that out loud?

As he placed the cocktail in front of her, he leaned on the bar, his gaze boring into hers. Wavy golden locks framed a handsome face with eyes that stared into her soul—if that was possible. “You asked what my job was here. Officially bartender, but I help where I can.” A flash of him striding across the pool deck swam before her. “I’ve only been here a week.” He offered her his hand. “I’m Sam, by the way. Sam Fremont.”

With as much grace and concentration as she could muster, she wrapped her hand in his. “Ali Stinson.” Their skin made contact, and the little tingle hit her again, making the hairs on her arms stand up.

Sam smiled like he’d won the grand prize in a game show. He moved closer to her. “Nice to meet you, Ali Stinson.” He smelled faintly of lemons, fresh and clean.

She sucked in a breath, blinked a few times, and tried to focus. To avoid leaning in and doing something foolish like kissing him, she veered back and almost fell off the bar stool. He jumped to attention and caught Ali’s arms, steadying her.

“Hey, you okay?” Sam questioned with a raised eyebrow.

“Fine.” For some reason, she had an urge to be honest with him. “Maybe…a little tipsy.”

“Mmmm.” He nodded in agreement. With Ali more firmly planted on her seat, his fingers released her one at a time as if testing her ability to survive without him. His hands lingered until he seemed satisfied she was able to sit on her own. “Do you think you’ve maybe had enough tonight?”

Of you? No.

This time, Ali was sure she didn’t say the words aloud. Sam waited for an answer. This man was asking her what she wanted, unlike her ex, who would have told her what to do. To rid her head of memories of Jack, she gave it a shake.

He must have mistaken the head shake as denial. “How about some water for this next round then?” he offered, changing tactics.

She nodded in agreement, causing the room to waver a little.

Was he trying to take care of her? Would she enjoy that?

Yes, please.

As he walked away to get her water, doubt crept in. He was probably simply doing his job by attending to the VIP. She’d noticed Brenda had stopped by the bar earlier and was pretty sure they’d been discussing her. Was he only following orders?

Sam returned with a tall, slim glass full of crystal-clear liquid and a bowl of the fancy pretzels. “I wondered if you might like some food to go with your drink?”

Ali eyed the contents of the bowl. She hadn’t eaten much at dinner due to the ever-present anxiety that she would say something to alert Brenda to her situation. Plus, her dress was so tight, she could barely breathe, never mind eat. Those pretzels were tempting.

As if to prove they weren’t poisonous, he picked up a few and began tossing them into his mouth, one by one. She giggled like a schoolgirl. In shock, she raised her hand to her lips. Ali Stinson did not giggle.

She expected him to laugh at her. Instead, he removed her hand from her mouth, turned it palm-side up, and placed a few pretzels in the center. His hand was warm beneath hers, with long, strong fingers and neatly-trimmed nails. Soft strokes of his thumb against her wrist sent little waves of bliss through her. He plucked one of the pretzels from her palm and was offering it to her when they were interrupted.


About the Author

D.L. Croisette is a storyteller. She had characters in her head before she had words in her mouth. Now she spins them into romantic stories full of drama and heart. Collector of international friends, avid traveller and always up for a new adventure, she snaps photos to remember each escapade, and peppers the best experiences into her stories. Ruby Red is her debut romance novel, and she’s probably at an outdoor cafĂ© right now, dreaming up a bold new heroine to stir up trouble. (Fun!)

Ruby Red is my first novel and launched a series of bold and sexy stories focusing on courageous, confident female characters in healthy relationships with intrepid, loyal men wrapped around dollops of drama, passion and emotional connections.


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