Medieval Monday ~ First Encounter: The Irish Warrior by Ashley York


Welcome to Medieval Monday! I’m delighted to have my friend, Ashley York, here today. She’s sharing the first encounter with her hero and heroine from The Irish Warrior. A stunning cover to match her beautiful story.


Outcast and alone, Thomasina MacDonell is hell bent on finding her brother, the only person who can thwart their father’s latest scheme to offer her as payment for his gambling debts. Disguised as a lad, she defiantly sets off on foot to locate him—never expecting to find a handsome, Irish warrior riding her beloved horse. The warrior’s offer of help and unsolicited advice on how to be manlier sparks an intimate desire to reveal her more feminine side.

Rejected by the love of his life, Sean O’Cisoghe wants simply to return home and heal his broken heart. When a young “lad” steals the horse out from under him, he discerns the spirited woman may be in way over her head against her ruthless father. Finding her brother while keeping her would-be betrothed at bay, Sean must confront the fact that Thomasina has stolen his heart. Will Norman soldiers out for his blood and shifting clan alliances cut short their growing passion?


Sean took a few steps into the woods, allowing his eyes to adjust. The shadowed figure of the mounted animal became discernible. It whinnied and backed further into the darkness.

“Hold!” Sean said. He struggled not to let his anger be heard. “Ye’ve bested me. Steal the horse but I’m for the coast. I need my things.”

“’Tis not stealing it if it’s mine.”

Not a woman’s voice. A young lad then.

“I paid for the use of it, son.”

“I’m not yer son.” The voice broke, confirming Sean’s suspicions.

“Nae. Ye’re not but I have quite a walk ahead of me. May I at least collect my belongings?”

A loud thud accompanied the bag that dropped at his feet. Sean stared at the sack. Arrogant little shite. The few items he’d collected to bring home were no doubt in pieces now. Anger simmered. He glanced toward the rider.

“My thanks. And will ye toss the weapons at me as well?”

“They’re mine now… the price for the use of my horse.”

Sean forced himself to appear calm. “I told ye I paid for the use.”

“But it wasn’t paid to me.”

Sean moved in closer but with every step, the rider retreated. If he could get his hands on him, Sean would teach him a lesson he wouldn’t soon be forgetting. By his size, the boy looked to be about ten.

“But I did pay for its use. An honest agreement between men. I had nae way of knowing it had been stolen. I had plans to return it.” Despite the blood racing through him at being outsmarted by some unknown, he shifted his tactics. He used his ever-so-amicable tone of voice but would not be letting the horse—or rider—get away. “When was the horse stolen from ye?”

The lad didn’t respond at first but the beast shifted, indicating uneasiness. “It was taken without my permission.”

Sean gave a small smile, moving closer as he spoke. “That’s what I said.”

“Nae ye asked when it was stolen from me.”

“Is there a difference?”

The lad tipped his head back as if looking heavenward in exasperation. Taking his eyes off Sean proved to be his mistake. With three long strides Sean closed in, yanked at the reins, and ripped them from the rider’s loose grip. Stepping clear, he waited while the courser jerked against the rope now held firmly in his grip. The rider, struggling to keep his seat, tossed about with the rough motion.


Definitely a young lad. Not even a curse uttered from the unexpected change of events.

“Damn it.”

Sean smiled and stepped in to put his arm around the horse’s snout to settle it down. He spoke in a quiet, calming voice. “Easy now, Roana.”

“Roana! What kind of name is that?” The lad threw his leg over the far side of its body in preparation for his escape.

The courser was not very tall. Sean wondered why he didn’t just jump off.

“The one I gave it! A handsome beast deserves a handsome name.”

He grabbed at the lad’s skinny arm, hauling him across the saddle, flat on his belly, facing him.

Sean offered a contented smile. “Did ye have somewhere to go?”

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Next week starts a new theme for the month of December on Medieval Monday ~ Celebrations! 

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Being Thankful…


I have so much to be thankful for at this time of year. The love of family and friends, and being able to do what I love most–writing. I celebrated a huge milestone this week. Dragon Knight’s Axe was #1 in Time-travel Romance and Scottish Historical Romance on Amazon. I am a bestselling author!

As always, I would not be here without you–my readers. Thank you! You have truly embraced the Dragon Knights, and I’ll be forever grateful.

Book news ~ If you’ve noticed the banner on the right hand side for The Romance Reviews, it’s because I’m a participating author in their year end celebration. Today is my featured day. Hop on over and answer the Q&A about Dragon Knight’s Axe for chance to win. Plus, there’s many other fabulous authors giving away great prizes. However, you do need to sign up, but it’s free! Click on the picture or enter here. UPDATE: When you enter the link, you’ll have to scroll down. My question is #12.

Since there won’t be a Friday Feast post this week, I’ll share one of my favorite recipes for cranberries. It’s super easy and delicious!

Any special sweet or savory items you’re making this week? Do share!

Happy Thanksgiving with love!


2 cups fresh cranberries

1/4 cup sugar

1/3 cup prepared horseradish

Sort the cranberries, discarding any soft ones. Chop them and put into a small saucepan with sugar. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is fully blended. (Approx. 5-10 minutes depending on how soft you want your cranberries)

Set aside to cool. Stir in the horseradish and serve.

May also be prepared and refrigerated for up to 24 hours before serving.

Makes 1 cup.

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Medieval Monday ~ First Encounter: The Druid Knight Tales by Ruth A. Casie


Welcome back to Medieval Monday! Today’s guest is the lovely Ruth A. Casie. I’m featuring her latest, The Druid Knight Tales. Any story that deals with druids has my interest, and I’m sure Ruth’s book will be a page-turner.


After a year of searching, Maximilian, the druid Grand Master, finds the sacred mistletoe destined for his soul mate shriveled and dead. He must journey to the Otherworld and tell the Ancestors of his failure.

Ellyn of Brodgar is an exceptional healer. But each healing kiss depletes her energy and brings her closer to death. Ellyn needs to find her own healing power before it’s too late.

Max and Ellyn are tossed into the Otherworld and have until the third sunset to appeal to the Ancestors or be lost forever. Together they find love, and as the last rays of the third sunset slip away, both are willing to sacrifice their hopes, dreams, and lives for the other. Do they have what it takes to escape the Otherworld and begin their life together?


“I thought they called out and I followed,” Max said.

“Who called out?” Ellyn asked.

“The Ancestors, of course. This is the shortest way to the standing stones. I was too eager. I knew something was amiss.” He winced in pain. “I should have listened to my own words,” he said between clenched teeth. “The Otherworld is not to be trusted.”

“Yes. There are traps and villains everywhere,” she mimicked his words. She opened the pouch she wore at her waist and removed a vial. “You must have slid down cliff on your back. The scrapes are deep.” Before she took care of his wounds she pressed her lips tenderly on his head, a kiss she was certain he would not feel. But his muscles twitched in response. She gasped in surprise at his reaction.

“I stepped onto the platform. It was fine.” He yawned. “But when I moved to the walkway the ropes gave way and I was falling through the air…” His voice trailed off and his eyelids slid closed.

She tenderly touched the rune tattoos on his back and gaped as each touch made them glow. She heard the tales of the magick runes but thought they were just that, tales. She stared at him, unable to say a word. She worked quickly, checking every scrape.

His wounds dressed and bandaged, she massaged his shoulders. When she was satisfied his muscles were relaxed, she gently prodded him to roll onto his back. The scrapes on his chest appeared to be minor.

Kneeling beside him, she ministered those wounds as well. When she was done, she sat back on her heels, startled. “Well, Grand Master, that is as much as I can do. The rest is up to you.”

“Aye,” he said sleepily, followed by a soft snore.

She wiped the blood from the scratches on his cheek and studied him.

Full brows framed his wide-set eyes with long, thick lashes. His high cheekbones accentuated the deep hollows beneath them. His close-clipped beard outlined his full lips. His face spoke of power and ageless strength. He had a face that was easy to look at.

The wounds cleaned and bandaged, she bent over and gave him a lingering kiss on his forehead. Her head snapped up and her fingers went to her lips. They tingled as if she had eaten something spicy. She searched his face. His ashen color hadn’t changed. Panic welled in her throat. Her healing kiss always brought results.

His arm snaked around her and drew her to him. She didn’t resist when he pulled her closer and kissed her deeply. When she moved away his eyes were closed, the corners of his mouth tipped up in a smile, and his face took on a soft pink hue.

Relief flooded through her but was quickly replaced with doubt. For the first time she wondered if her healing kiss would be enough.


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My guest next week on Medieval Monday is Ashley York!

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Quote for the Week of November 22, 2015

Co. Kerry, Ireland

Co. Kerry, Ireland


“There are three sparks that kindle love: the face, the demeanor, and the way of speaking.” 

–Ancient Irish saying

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Release Date for Dragon Knight’s Shield!


Here is the official release date from my publisher for Dragon Knight’s Shield ~ Friday, January 8, 2016!

This feeling of excitement never grows old. I’m planning parties, contests, prizes, and fun to kick-off a month long celebration starting in December. Pre-order links will be forthcoming next month, too.


Angus MacKay, leader of the Dragon Knights, failed his brothers and his clan upon the death of his sister. Now he must fight the darkness of despair tempting his soul. Back on Scottish soil, he comes face to face with Deirdre who can wield a sword as mightily as his warriors, and takes her captive. Yet, with each passing day, the fire dragon inside him roars to claim the one woman fate has destined for him.

Famed mystery writer, Deirdre Flanagan, is unprepared for the next chapter in her life. On a vacation to Scotland, she steps through the mists and enters into a skirmish alongside a Highlander. However, the fight has only begun, and now she must battle Angus as well as evil in order to claim the love of this Dragon Knight.

Will their love be powerful enough to shield them from danger, or burn them to ashes?


His look was predatory, lustful, inviting, and she took a step backward. Words failed her as she took another step back.

He arched a brow and his smile became seductive. “Do I frighten ye?”

“No!” she lied. Like hell you do! You’re as gorgeous as sin standing there, and I want to rip your clothes from your body.

Pushing off from the wall, he stepped into the room and silently closed the door behind him, his eyes never leaving hers. His hair hung in soft waves past his shoulders, and her fingers itched to twine within them. Her body ached in places so deep—longing for even the slightest touch.

“Are ye unwell, my lady?”

The burr of his voice so low—so sexy, she could only stare at him until his words resonated in her mind. “No,” she replied softly, feeling the flames of desire heat not only her face, but also her entire body.

This time when he took another step closer, Deirdre didn’t back away. Now he stood so close she could feel the warmth of his breath across her face—a mix of wine and pure male.

She watched mesmerized as he reached for a lock of her hair, twining it around his finger. “So verra soft.”

Deirdre couldn’t breathe, as he let the curl unravel and cupped her face in his hands. “Ye confuse me. Ye torment me in my dreams,” he whispered against her cheek, sending a wave of pleasure down her spine.

Without thought, she groaned and leaned into him—his beard grazing her cheek. She no longer battled her mind for the man. “Kiss me, Angus.”


I hope you enjoyed this sneak peek into the world of the fourth Dragon Knight and his Lady. More to follow next month! 

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Medieval Monday ~ First Encounter: Snow in July by Kim Iverson Headlee


Welcome to Medieval Monday! Today, I have the wonderful Kim Iverson Headlee sharing her Medieval romance, Snow in July. This looks like a fascinating story–a blend of history and magic.


Sir Robert Alain de Bellencombre has been granted what every man wants: a rich English estate in exchange for his valiant service at the Battle of Hastings. To claim this reward, the Norman knight must wed the estate’s Saxon heiress. Most men would leap at such an opportunity, but for Alain, who broke his vow to his dying mother by failing to protect his youngest brother in battle, it means facing more easily broken vows. But when rumors of rampant thievery, dangerous beasts, and sorcery plaguing a neighboring estate reach his ears, nothing will make him shirk duty to king and country when people’s lives stand at risk. He assumes the guise of a squire to scout the land, its problems, and its lady.

Lady Kendra of Edgarburh has been granted what no woman wants: a forced marriage to an enemy who may be kith or kin to the man who murdered her beloved brother. Compounding her anguish is her failure to awaken the miraculous healing gift bequeathed by their late mother in time to save his life. Although with his dying breath, he made her promise to seek happiness above all, Kendra vows that she shall find neither comfort nor love in the arms of a Norman…unless it snows in July.

Alain is smitten by Lady Kendra from the first moment of their meeting; Kendra feels the forbidden allure of the handsome and courtly Norman “squire.” But a growing evil overshadows everyone, invoking dark forces and ensnaring Kendra in a plot to overthrow the king Alain is oath-bound to serve. Kendra and Alain face a battle unlike any other as their honor, their love, their lives, and even their very souls lie in the balance.


As Sir Ruaud babbled in his semicoherent English about Sir Robert, Kendra fought a jumble of emotions regarding Ruaud’s squire. Not only was his station beneath her rank, his being Norman placed him beneath her contempt. And yet she couldn’t tear her gaze from him.

Several inches taller than Sir Ruaud, the squire was trim where Ruaud sported a paunch, and he radiated quiet dignity to counter Ruaud’s comic disposition. Both men wore their blond hair cropped close, but Ruaud’s darker locks didn’t curl about his ears and forehead in whimsical wisps begging to be touched. Ruaud’s nose bore the lumpish evidence of having been broken at least once, but no scars marred the squire’s face. And those eyes—merciful heaven, if the squire regarded her once more with those probing, sea-green eyes, she would faint from the delectable agony.

Relief washed over her when he broke eye contact and strode to the packhorse. Broad shoulders and sinewy arms rippled as he wrestled something from a saddle pack. For one wanton moment, she imagined being encircled by those arms, protected, cherished. Loved… happy…

She shook her head. One of his countrymen had murdered her brother. She must despise this man.

And yet that task was proving to be a major chore.


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Enjoy the lovely book trailer for Snow in July. Next week on Medieval Monday my guest is Ruth Casie.

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Quote for the Week of November 15, 2015

My trip to Paris

My trip to Paris


“We look forward to the time when the power of love will replace the love of power. Then will our world know the blessings of peace.”

William Ewart Gladstone

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Friday Feast ~ Pumpkin Face Mask and Sale for Dragon Knight’s Axe!

IMG_3433With the holidays upon us, I thought it would be a treat to have a spa day. Post something fun and simple.

We all get wrapped up in the frenzy rush–endless lists, cleaning, shopping, planning holiday meals, and we have our own daily work load on top of everything. I’ve already started to panic, because I just realized that I haven’t bought my Christmas cards for this year. I like to send them out right after Thanksgiving, so I’d better add that to my list. Yet, I keep thinking I have plenty of time. Humph! Not the way this year is zipping by me.

Well, it’s time to step back–breathe deeply and take an hour, or half-hour to pamper ourselves.

So, put on your festive pajamas, whip up a batch of hot chocolate (I like to add some Peppermint Schnapps) and let’s give ourselves a facial.

This mask is loaded with vitamin A, which is healing to the skin. Helps reduce lines and wrinkles. Plus, it smells divine.

Pumpkin Face Mask

2 teaspoons canned plain pumpkin

½ teaspoon honey

¼ teaspoon heavy whipping cream

Mix all ingredients and apply to face. Leave on for 10 minutes and then rinse

As an extra treat, my publisher has put Dragon Knight’s Axe on sale for only .99! Grab your copy now! Here’s a peek into the spa day that Fiona, Brigid, and Aileen had in Dragon Knight’s Axe. Enjoy!


Pushing away from the wall, she brushed the curls from her face. She didn’t want to think about Alastair, or the fact that she might be pregnant. “What is it you wanted to ask me earlier, Brigid?”

Looping her arm through hers, Brigid drew her close. “I wanted to ask if you would like to join us for a mini spa day.”

“Excuse me? Where?”

Aileen took her other arm, and they propelled her further down the corridor. “We have this special place where it’s secluded. There is a tiny stream, which always stays warm. I’m thinking Stephen has something to do with it, since water is his power. We try to make it down there at least once a week. Today, we wanted to include you.”

“We’re also dying to trim our hair and if our husbands caught us they would throw fits,” interjected Brigid.

Aileen rolled her eyes. “You would think we were chopping it all off according to Stephen. But he’ll never notice an inch.”

Fiona almost fainted with excitement. “I would love for someone to cut my curls.”

“Short and sassy suits you,” stated Brigid.

“Lead the way, ladies.”

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Medieval Monday ~ First Encounter: Betrothal by Jenna Jaxon


Welcome to Medieval Monday! As we continue with our “First Encounters” all this month, I’m thrilled to have Jenna Jaxon here today. We’re taking a glimpse into her Medieval romance, Betrothal.



Passion never dies.

Lady Alyse Braedon frets over her renewed passion for Sir Geoffrey Longford, her first love. They have pledged their hearts to one another, despite the fact that both are recently widowed. Alyse worries that she has not properly mourned Thomas and cannot think herself as true wife to Geoffrey until she puts her feelings for her first husband to rest.

And then Thomas unaccountably appears in her bedroom. She is stunned and confused. When he begins to make love to her, however, she joyfully surrenders herself to his familiar caresses and expert ministrations…until Geoffrey arrives.

Faced with the dilemma of wanting two lovers, Alyse simply cannot choose–until Thomas suggests she doesn’t have to. Instead he and Geoffrey will share her. The scandalous proposition awakens new hungers within her. Can she allow herself to abandon all she’s been taught a proper woman should resist, and find pleasure with both her beloveds?



The familiar voice tugged at the edges of wakefulness. Had Geoffrey returned so soon? The sound did not have his deep tone. Yet ’twas a voice she knew well, rich and sensual.

“Do not fret, sweet. ’Twill be all right.”

Alyse struggled to open her eyes, though the heavy lids fought against her.

The bed dipped as someone sat beside her. . Good. Thank the Lord. Geoffrey had returned. Although she would swear it had not been he who had spoken.

A soft hand cupped her face, and she pressed her cheek against it, luxuriating in its warmth. She smiled and her eyes fluttered open at last.

The man seated on the bed had shoulder-length honey-blond hair and warm, beguiling brown eyes. He also defied fashion and wore a thin mustache and beard. His eyes brightened when he noticed she was awake and his mouth turned up in the lazy smile she had come to know so very well.

“Thomas.” The name came out a croak. Holy Father, had she conjured him with her guilt and longing? She shrank back into the pillows.

His smile widened and he caressed her, running one long finger along her jaw. “Aye, sweet Alyse. ’Tis I. Do you feel better now, my love?”

“Better?” She must be dying to see such an apparition. Or mayhap she was already dead and in heaven.

“Aye. You do not shiver as you did a moment ago. I hoped that meant you felt warmer.” He picked up her hand and kissed the knuckles.

Warmth flowed through her, soothing her, making her body tingle with that single touch of his lips.

“Is it really you?” Strength welled within her and she struggled to sit up.

“As ever I was.” He smiled, his gaze sweeping down her body. His eyes darkened with the desire she remembered well.

“Oh, Thomas.” She threw her arms around him, sighing when they embraced the hard-muscled chest she had lain upon so often. “I thought you dead, my love. Did I but dream?”

“Shhh, my sweet. I am here now.” He stroked her head then pulled it back to peer into her face. “I will always be with you, love.” He sank his mouth onto hers, and she melted at the touch of his insistent lips.

Like coming home.


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I hope you enjoyed this week’s Medieval Monday post. Next week’s guest is Kim Headlee.

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Quote for the Week of November 8, 2015



“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.

–Ralph Waldo Emerson


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