Book Releases

Holding On (Colorado High Country #6) —
The Colorado High Country series returns with Conrad and Kenzie's story.

A hero barely holding on…

Harrison Conrad returned to Scarlet Springs from Nepal, the sole survivor of a freak accident on Mt. Everest. Shattered and grieving for his friends, he vows never to climb again and retreats into a bottle of whiskey—until Kenzie Morgan shows up at his door with a tiny puppy asking for his help. He’s the last person in the world she should ask to foster this little furball. He’s barely capable of managing his own life right now, let alone caring for a helpless, adorable, fluffy puppy. But Conrad has always had a thing for Kenzie with her bright smile and sweet curves. One look into her pleading blue eyes, and he can’t say no.

The woman who won’t let him fall…

Kenzie Morgan’s life went to the dogs years ago. A successful search dog trainer and kennel owner, she gets her fill of adventure volunteering for the Rocky Mountain Search & Rescue Team. The only thing missing from her busy life is love. It’s not easy finding Mr. Right in a small mountain town, especially when she’s unwilling to date climbers. She long ago swore never again to fall for a guy who might one day leave her for a rock. When Conrad returns from a climbing trip haunted by the catastrophe that killed his best friend, Kenzie can see he’s hurting and wants to help. She just might have the perfect way to bring him back to the world of the living. But friendship quickly turns into something more—and now she’s risking her heart to heal his.

In ebook and soon in print!

About Me

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I grew up in Colorado at the foot of the Rocky Mountains, then lived in Denmark and traveled throughout Europe before coming back to Colorado. I have two adult sons, whom I cherish. I started my writing career as a columnist and investigative reporter and eventually became the first woman editor of two different papers. Along the way, my team and I won numerous state and several national awards, including the National Journalism Award for Public Service. In 2011, I was awarded the Keeper of the Flame Lifetime Achievement Award for Journalism. Now I write historical romance and contemporary romantic suspense.


Seductive Musings

Thursday, March 28, 2013

DEFIANT is a RITA finalist!

Sorry I’ve been away for so long! A blog that is updated once a month is a BORING blog. I do understand that. But my effort has been channeled into writing Striking Distance, which is halfway completed now, and I’m willing to bet you’re okay with that.

One nice thing about being so focused on Laura and Javier’s story is that I’m oblivious to so much else that’s going on in the world. I had completely forgotten that RITA finalists would be announced soon. I was not up at the crack of dawn on Tuesday, March 26, waiting for “the call.” In fact, when “the call” came, I was sound asleep.

I crawled out of bed — I’d been in the middle of a dream about bugs crawling on my bedroom ceiling  — and stumbled down the stairs cussing all the way to the phone. The caller identified herself and said she was calling on behalf of the RWA Board of Directors.

I was so asleep that my first thought — I kid you not — was, “Does this have to do with that penis post on Facebook?”

It didn’t.

She said, “I’m calling to let you know that your book...”

And it clicked.  RWA. March. Phone call. My book...


At which point, I said, “Oh my God!” or something like that.

She finished the sentence “... Defiant is a RITA finalist in the historical romance category,” or something like that... and then I was so excited who knows what she said or I said.

And that was the end of my getting anything done that day.

I am so grateful to RWA and to the judges who read Defiant and found merit in the story. Being a finalist at the RWA convention is kind of like being a princess for five days. You get a pretty blue flag on your table at the big “Readers for Life” Literacy book signing. They have a reception. You wear a special ribbon on your name tag and get a pretty pin. (Click here to see a list of all the RITA finalists in all categories.)

Surrender was a RITA finalist in 2007, so I’ve been fortunate to experience this once already. Although Surrender didn’t win, the conference was still unforgettable.

I should say that it’s pretty cool that TWO of the three books that make up the MacKinnon’s Rangers series so far have been RITA finalists. I love that!

So, yes, I’ll be attending the RWA conference in Atlanta July 17-20. The literacy signing, which will involve hundreds of writers, takes place in the evening on Wednesday, July 17, and is open to the public. Click here for more information on the conference and the literacy signing. If you live in the Atlanta area, I would love to meet you!

I plan to have a special event set up for members of the I-Team and Camp Followers Facebook groups so that we can meet in person and have some time to talk. And there may be other big surprises in store, as well. So please stay tuned!

And now back to writing...

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

For those who love Colonial American romance

For some time now, I’ve been one of a handful of authors writing Colonial American romance. I say “one of a handful,” but in truth, I think I’m hard pressed to think of anyone else who’s writing stories set in this time and place.

BUT that has all changed. Donna Thorland debuts today with THE TURNCOAT, a romance set during the Revolutionary War. The story, published by Penguin NAL, focuses on a romance and conflict between a Colonial woman and a British officer.

Here’s the blurb from the back of the book:

Lovers on opposite sides of a brutal war, with everything at stake and no possibility of retreat.  

Major Lord Peter Tremayne is the last man rebel bluestocking Kate Grey should fall in love with, but when the handsome British viscount commandeers her home, Kate throws caution to the wind and responds to his seduction. She is on the verge of surrender when a spy in her own household seizes the opportunity to steal the military dispatches Tremayne carries, ensuring his disgrace—and implicating Kate in high treason. Painfully awakened to the risks of war, Kate determines to put duty ahead of desire, and offers General Washington her services as an undercover agent in the City of Brotherly Love.

Months later, having narrowly escaped court martial and hanging, Tremayne returns to decadent, British-occupied Philadelphia with no stomach for his current assignment—to capture the woman he believes betrayed him. Nor does he relish the glittering entertainments being held for General Howe’s idle officers. Worse, the glamorous woman in the midst of this social whirl, the fiancĂ©e of his own dissolute cousin, is none other than Kate Grey herself. And so begins their dangerous dance, between passion and patriotism, between certain death and the promise of a brave new future together.

Sounds exciting to me!

I want to do all I can to help Ms. Thorland launch her story because I know from first-hand experience how hard it is to draw attention to stories set during this period. So many readers want to find something besides Regency romances. Even those for whom Regency romances are the gold standard want to read something different once in a while. But with so many titles released every month, “something different” can be hard to find.

Also, I suspect my readers — those who’ve loved the MacKinnon’s Rangers series or the Kenleigh-Blakewell series will enjoy the story and want to know about it.

Ms. Thorland contacted me about a month ago to tell me that she’d read my books and seen the trailer for DEFIANT and that she’d been inspired to make her own trailer. With a degree in cinema, she did a fantastic job of it.

Here’s what reviewers have said about the book so far:

“A combination of historical espionage and smoldering romance, Thorland’s first novel is a surprising and engrossing tale. Immersing the reader in 1777 Philadelphia, sweeping from decadent high-society balls to the filth of battlefield infirmaries, Thorland exhibits real passion for the time period. Fans of Philippa Gregory and Loretta Chase will find The Turncoat a thrilling read.” –Booklist

“The Turncoat is an exhilarating, intelligent, and superbly intricate spy thriller that keeps its tension vibrating and surprises crackling until the very last page.” –RT Book Reviews

“A stay-up-all-night, swashbuckling, breath-holding adventure of a novel…An extraordinary book about an extraordinary heroine.”—Lauren Willig, National Bestselling Author of the Pink Carnation series
“Fabulous…A world of spies, suspense, skullduggery, and sex.  You won’t want to stop reading.”— New York Times Bestselling Author William Martin

“It’s historical romance for those who like military tactics front and center, genealogy gnarled and explicit sex scenes rare (but, uh, pretty darn explicit).” –Philadelphia City Paper

“Very entertaining.”—New York Times bestselling author Margaret George

Not bad praise for a debut, is it?

I haven’t read the story yet, but it’s sitting on my TBR. From the sneak peeks I’ve taken, I think I’m going to love it.

To learn more about Donna Thorland, to check out the fun historical extras on her website, or to read about THE TURNCOAT, go to

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Favorite Writing Quotes

"I am an artist. I am here to live out loud."
—Emile Zola

"I am tomorrow, or some future day, what I establish today. I am today what I established yesterday or some previous day."
—James Joyce

"Let other pens dwell on guilt and misery."
—Jane Austen

"Writers are those for whom writing is more difficult that it is for others."
—Ernest Hemingway

"When I write, I feel like an armless, legless man with a crayon in his mouth."
—Kurt Vonnegut

"The ability of writers to imagine what is not the self, to familiarize the strange and mystify the familiar is the test of their power."
—Toni Morrison

"No tears in the author, no tears in the reader."
—Robert Frost.

"I'm a writer. I give the truth scope."
—the character of Chaucer in
A Knight's Tale