Out-lanta by Tina DeSalvo is a must read addition to your e-reader! Grab your favorite cocktail or glass tumbler filled with your drink of choice. Then settle in for a roadtrip from Atlanta to Cane, Louisiana!
I’ve been to Atlanta and New Orleans and there is something majestic about the plantations, food, and culture. When you add a Polish bride on the run and new friends, this story is the escape right before the weekend. I loved reading Gone With the Wind with the southern vibe and rich history. When I read this, I felt immersed into a world of blended culture, rich tradition and loyalty. While I can’t jet off to either city at the moment, this book is the next best thing!
Our hero Luck Marcelle is in for the ride of his life when he encounters Ania Darska, she’s on the run and he needs to figure out why. Luke’s world will never be the same and that means this story delivers in spades! Tina’s attention to the little nuances and details of Ania, Izzy, and Ruby, beloved characters, is a emersion of wit, charm, sass and a little spice ;)!
A two peppers spicy latte hot delight with the perfect amount of sizzle to make you tingle. Oh, and yes, it’s for mature readers 18+.
I received this ARC for a fair and honest review. Don’t wait to download your copy, it’s at a one-click price of $0.99!
“Okay ladies, I’m all yours,” Luke Marcelle said as he climbed into his sleek, deep red BMW M3 convertible. He’d left the Jeep he used for work back home in Louisiana, choosing to make the road trip to Atlanta in what he called his recreational vehicle. Luke put his Nikon digital camera into his backpack on the center console between the front seats. He turned to look at his passengers in the back seat. “I got my photos from the beautiful Swan House and boxwood gardens for work. I’m finished here at the Atlanta History Center. The rest of the afternoon is for your pleasure.”
“And we are here for youz pleasure, too,” eighty-eight-year-old Izzy Bienvenu said from the back seat where she sat under an enormous floppy straw hat to the right of her fifty-something year old niece, Ruby. Both women were from Cane, Louisiana where Luke had moved his business a few years ago. “It’s nice we’ze all happened to be in Atlanta at da same time. We’ze are ready to party wit you and take youz mind off of work.”
Tanté Izzy and Ruby looked like they were ready for a NFL Sunday game in the Superdome rather than ‘partying’ in the springtime with him. Luke appreciated their team loyalty and got a chuckle seeing them in their bedazzled black and gold New Orleans Saints t-shirts and huge black, sunglasses that looked like bumblebee eyes. Even though football season was months away, Tanté Izzy said they were wearing the Saint’s t-shirts because they wanted the Atlanta Falcon fans to know that their rival Who-Dat fans were around. She sure enjoyed making the sport of fan-mania an all year long fandom. The fancy sunglasses they wore had nothing to do with being a super-fan, though. According to Tanté Izzy, she and Ruby wore them because they looked sexier with them on while riding in his red-hot convertible with the top down.
“Party?” Ruby said, shaking her head, causing her bright red bangs to swish across her forehead from under the giant hat she wore. “Don’t you think that’s an overstatement. Luke here doesn’t want to go out dancing and clubbing with us, Tanté Izzy. He’s too busy for that. He’s just going to spend an afternoon with us. Remember, he’s got a lot to do for that big project he’s bidding on. It’s for that new neighborhood that he wants to build not too far from Cane. The one he’s taking all those pretty pictures for.” She looked at Luke. “What’s it called again?”
“He’s going to grow his construction company from building houses and commercial buildings one client at a time to building thousands of houses for just one client.” Ruby explained to Tante’ Izzy who was adjusting her own huge hat on her tiny head.
“He hasn’t gotten dat big job, yet,” Tanté Izzy whispered to Ruby, but he heard her just fine from the front seat. “He’s still got to win da bid over two other companies. We’ze here to take his mind off of dat. So hush youz mouth.” Then in a louder voice she spoke directly to Luke. “Ruby and I are ready to go on da Walking Dead Tour.”
“From the Classical 1928 Swan House, or as you ladies refer to it as President Snow’s Mansion from The Hunger Games, to the Walking Dead tour.” He started the car and closed his eyes, enjoying the sound of the powerful engine purring to life. Just then, the passenger door flung open and a rustle of noisy fabric and feathers along with a blur of bright white filled the front seat.
“What the hell?” Either he was hallucinating or a beautiful dark haired bride had just jumped in his car.
“Go, Go, Go,” the stranger in white screamed, banging on the dash. Even though she’d only spoken three short words, he could tell she had a foreign accent. The bride looked past him with big blue eyes focused on the woodland path on the other side of the parking lot.
“Hell no. I’ve seen this movie and I’m not interested in Buford T. Justice chasing me across Georgia.”
“Oh. I get out then if you do not drive.” The woman started to shift to get out of the car, struggling with the dress. The top of the dress fit like shrink wrap on her very shapely body making it difficult for her to bend and move. Yet, as stingy that part of her dress was with fabric, the bottom more than compensated for it. Starting with a huge flare around her knees, there seemed to be miles of voluminous fabric there. It equally made movement a problem for her. How had she even managed to get into his sports car?
She looked somewhere past him again.
“No. He drive,” Ruby said, unintentionally speaking like the runaway bride had.
“Yes?” she asked, her voice shaky one second and in the next her hand flew to her mouth and she shouted with complete assertiveness. “I need you driving. Now. They are coming. Hurry.” Her accent was heavier than it was at first. She was now adding a “k” at the end of her ing words.
“Go. Go. Go.” Tanté Izzy and Ruby screamed at the same time.
“One of those three men wearing the tuxedoes, has a gun,” Ruby shouted. “God, he must be the jilted groom.”
“I gotz my gun too,” Tanté Izzy yelled, reaching into her purse. Hearing that was all the incentive Luke needed. The thought of a shoot-out between an angry fiancé and an elderly Cajun woman had him punching his foot on the accelerator. The powerful engine responded as it was engineered to and they sped off.
The bride’s veil blew up behind her like a kite tail, whipping Tanté Izzy and Ruby in the face as it trailed to the trunk of the car.
“Oh, no,” the bride cried, tugging on the material flying behind her head. It caught the wind and came around to cover Luke’s face. He slammed on his brakes.
“Are you trying to get us killed?” he yanked the white fabric off of his face as she tried bundling it up into a ball. That’s when a ping sounded near the side of the car. All three women screamed.
Luke flinched and floored it. “Holy crap, lady. I’ve heard of shotgun weddings before, but this is ridiculous.”
“Oh, God, I’m going to be dead,” she said, folding over onto her lap and giving Luke a full view of the back of her dress and the deep plunge which left a view of more fair skin than not. Hell, there was hardly any dress in the back at all.
“I’m calling 9-1-1,” Ruby shouted. “A person should be able to say no and leave a wedding if they want…even the bride.”
“Nie. No. Please.” The woman jerked up, reached around and grabbed the phone from Ruby’s hand. A tear slid down her cheek. “No police. I get out of car,” she offered and looked back to see if anyone was following them.
Luke did the same. Two cars cut the corner behind them. He sped up and took the next turn and then three after that without slowing down. His car was a performance dream. The women were grabbing onto the back and bottom of their seats to keep from falling over, even though the car hugged each turn smoothly. Luke hooked a hard, fast left and pulled into what looked like an old office parking garage. He hit the brakes, turned the wheel and stopped the car facing in the direction they had just come it. He turned off the headlights and the darkness from the empty garage closed in around them. He left the engine running.
“Where can I drop you off?” he asked the woman with the white-knuckled grip on his dash.
Tanté Izzy smacked him in the back of the head and leaned between the console seats. “You liked drivin’ fast too much.”
“Hey, I was just trying to keep us from getting shot.”
“You are crazy driver,” the bride said, letting go of the dash. “Thank you for keeping us not getting dead.”
“Youz talk funny. Where are youz from?”
The woman looked over her shoulder to Tanté Izzy, then back toward where cars were passing on the street outside of the parking garage. “Lithuania,” she replied, but something in her tone told Luke she was lying. “You have an accent too. Where are you from?”
“God’s country.” Tanté Izzy said with a big smile. Ruby nodded next to her.
“That’s for sure,” Ruby added. “We’re from a town called Cane in Louisiana. It’s near New Orleans.”
“Ruby and I is Cajun,” Tanté Izzy piped in, as if that explained everything. “Luke’s not Cajun by birth but he’z Cajun by friendship.”
The probably not-Lithuanian bride’s dark brows lifted. She clearly didn’t understand what any of that meant, but didn’t ask for an explanation. She was looking around the quiet parking garage.
Luke pulled out his phone. “Shall I call you a cab?”
“No. I can walk.” She picked Ruby’s phone up off the floor where it had fallen in the mad getaway, and handed it back. “I’m sorry for taking it.” Luke frowned hearing her insert a k again in an ing word – to make taking sound like takink. Her accent made her sound more vulnerable somehow. She opened the door, the bottom of her wedding dress poured out like a flooding river over the banks.
“No. Don’t go,” Ruby said, squeezing her broad shoulders into the small space next to Tanté Izzy so she could get closer to the bride. “It’s not safe for you to walk through the streets with an angry fiancé and his posse of groomsmen chasing after you. Not to mention that it will be impossible to drag that long Cathedral train behind you.” Ruby lowered her sunglasses down her nose and looked over the top of them. “From what I can see—spilling out the door like that—it sure looks like a real pretty train.”
“We’ze ain’t goin’ to throw her to da wolves.” Tanté Izzy said looking at Luke.
He shook his head. “You must have friends or family you can call.”
She sighed. “I can walk.”
Oh hell. That wasn’t the response he wanted to hear. Luke grabbed the steering wheel and looked out his window into the dark, dusty garage.
“Luke Marcelle,” Tanté Izzy said, “dis girl needs our help and we’ze goin’ to give it to her. Don’t make her feel bad about it either. It took a lot of courage to walk out of her own weddin’ when all da people came to wish her a happy life.”
The woman looked at Tanté Izzy. “You are a good Babcia. I thank you but I don’t want trouble for you or your grandson and daughter.”
“Dey aren’t my grandson and daughter,” Tanté Izzy corrected. “Dey are family, Ruby by blood and Luke by friendship. Dey also are da peoples who are gonna help you.”
Get your copy here:
Tina DeSalvo, a fresh, humorous voice in romance, brings her knowledge and passion for the culture, traditions and people of Cajun Country (where she lives) and New Orleans (where she grew up) to her Second Chance Novel series-Elli, Jewell and Abby (coming this summer!). Tina is also a journalist who spent her career in television news and as one of the first female sports broadcasters in Louisiana. A Breast Cancer Survivor, Tina donates her proceeds from Elli to help individuals fight the disease. She loves to write, but she especially loves spending time with readers…sharing laughs, tears and hugs. Learn more about Tina at tinadesalvo.com
***** Congratulations to the Day 4 Giveaway Winners *****
You have 24 hours to comment on this post or a new winner will be selected at the end of the Blitz!
Tina De Salvo’s Giveaway
sallycootie you have won a basket filled with Cajun Goodies, including good Cajun Coffee, a nice coffee mug and other southern treats!
Joan Kayse Giveaway
sallycootie you have won a kindle download of RUARC: BOUND BY STONE the first in Joan’s Guardian Isle series.
Catherine Kean Giveaway
Carina you have won a kindle copy of Catherine’s medieval Christmas novella One Knight Under the Mistletoe.
ALL WINNERS HAVE 24 hours to comment on this post and if not claimed then a new winner will be selected.
Congratulations and Happy Reading!
15 brand-new novellas. 15 best-selling romance authors. A holiday-themed collection like no other.
What happens under the kissing bough doesn’t necessarily stay beneath the kissing bough…
According to lore, the origins of which date to the late 12th century, no lady should refuse a kiss beneath the mistletoe, else she will not marry in the next year. In exchange for the kiss, a berry is removed from the sprig until all of the berries are gone and no more kisses can be stolen. Some also believe that a sprig of mistletoe collected from a local church and placed beneath a maiden’s pillow will inspire dreams of her future husband.
What happens when fifteen daring heroines pin their hopes on mistletoe, a little luck, and a kiss in this multi-genre, limited edition holiday collection from 15 bestselling authors? Pure holiday magic!
The Whole Latte:
There is nothing better than a holiday anthology to kick off a festive season full giving, treats and LOTS of romance! This collection will cross off all three in one clean swoop and at a bargain price of ninety-nine cents, it’s worth every penny. Do NOT miss out on must read romance!
I’ll be featuring a few novellas every day until release day on November 22nd. Just two more days until you can catch up with characters and authors you know and love, or discover for the first time.
Again, the line-up has many of my favorites and I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.
Some of these have a little more spice than others and balance the collection perfectly.
Be sure to check out the great giveaways daily and comment for a chance to win.
Happy Reading and Happy Holidays!
Days before Christmas, Lady Honoria Whitford buys a book at the market to add to her prized collection. Lord Tristan de Champagne, her brother’s best friend who will be spending the holidays with them, is Intrigued by her love of romantic tales but resents how enchanting he finds her, for he’s vowed never to risk his heart again. As Christmas mischief under the Kissing Bough unfolds, so does the secret of the book—one destined to bring great peril but also ever-after love.
The Whole Latte:
Lady Honoria Whitford loves to read and when she acquires an old book, her life will change forever.
From her chance encounter with Tristan de Champagne, a friend of her brothers, a real life adventure will begin for Honoria. One filled with deceit, secrets and sabotage. An added measure of desire and longing will round out this delightful story.
There is nothing more exciting at the holidays than a romance anthology filled with magic, mistletoe and adventure.Will Honoria have a happy ending with the fair Knight?
Bestselling, award-winning novelist Catherine Kean is a Kindle Unlimited All-Star author of medieval romances. Her love of history began with visits to England during summer vacations, when her British father took her to crumbling medieval castles, dusty museums filled with fascinating artifacts, and historic churches. Her love of the awe-inspiring past stuck with her as she completed a B.A. (Double Major, First Class) in English and History. She completed a year-long Post Graduate course with Sotheby’s auctioneers in London, England, and worked for several years in Canada as an antiques and fine art appraiser.
After she married a tall, handsome, and charming Brit and moved to Florida, she started writing novels, her lifelong dream. She wrote her first medieval romance, A Knight’s Vengeance, while her baby daughter was napping. Catherine’s books were originally published in paperback and several were released in Czech, German, and Thai foreign editions. She has won numerous awards for her stories, including the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence. Her novels also finaled in the Next Generation Indie Book Awards and the National Readers’ Choice Awards.
When not working on her next book, Catherine enjoys cooking, baking, browsing antique shops, shopping with her daughter, and gardening. She lives in Florida with her husband, daughter, and two spoiled rescue cats. Visit her website at http://www.catherinekean.com
Tartan Bows and Mistletoe by Sandy Blair is a story woven with family expectations, the importance of money, and the ability to know when to speak out.
John Colin is in need of funds and he must find a way to save himself. When he meets Olivia Conor, he will have a change of heart and discover that sometimes love, lore and magic are the only thing worth pursuing.
Official Book Blurb:
Traditions, mistletoe kisses and second chances…
The Cajun Christmas on the Bayou Celebration is an annual event in the remote town of Fa La, Louisiana, nicknamed – Fa La La. It has supported generations of the families who live in the tiny, isolated bayou community. This year may be the last. Thanks to Hunter James who bought the neighboring island, they can no longer use his land for a major part of the celebration. The island is his home where he expects to find much needed peace and quiet. He doesn’t want Christmas lights, music and revelers on his land no matter what Fa La La’s beautiful advocate, Dr. Camille Comeaux, says as she tries to change his mind…and changes his heart.
Will Camille fight to steal Hunter’s peace so her family can have theirs?
An Excerpt from a Hunt for Christmas, from the Second Chance Novel series
A Novella from the Under the Kissing Bough Christmas Collection
By Tina DeSalvo
…He did seem to care about his body, she noted. He had wide, broad shoulders that tapered to narrow hips. She imagined that his flat stomach would be firm and toned. Whether he worked to achieve that lean, healthy body because of vanity, the pleasure of working out, or for necessity because his job required it, she didn’t know. She also didn’t know why, when she’d seen thousands of male bodies before, his made her pulse increase. Maybe it was because he wasn’t on an examining table and she wasn’t his doctor.
“I need to talk to you about the Fa La La Cajun Christmas on the Bayou Celebration,” she said, shifting in the rocker to fully face him.
He stood, walked down the stairs and sat on the second step.
Dear Lord. How do I have a serious discussion with him when he’s a moving target? She promptly followed him down the steps and stood nearby. “Your island is important to the success of the celebration.”
His response was to pick up a pair of running shoes, knocking them upside down against one another, before putting them on his bare feet.
She moved to stand directly in front of him. “It’s quite a serious matter.” He looked at her tapping foot and smiled. Heat rushed into her cheeks. She hadn’t even realized she was doing it. She pressed her foot soundly to the ground.
“You’re wound up with too much energy, Doc.” He tied his shoes in a slow easy manner. “Let’s go for a walk.” He stood.
She joined him as he started to walk away. Her phone dinged in her back pocket as she reached Hunter’s side. She read her text – it was from Edward. Do you want me to come to the island to assist you?
Her phone dinged again. Another text. It was from her mother: Don’t let Edward go to the island. You’ll have a better chance to convince Hunt to change his mind if it’s just the two of you. We’ve met him. He’s safe. You won’t need your papa’s gun from the boat just in case you were thinking about that. Don’t forget to finger-comb your hair.
And then there was a third text from her older sister, Sarah: He’s really handsome. Smile a lot and don’t shoot him.
She’d been home for less than an hour and her family was already trying to tell her what to do and play matchmaker. Both reasons why she’d left in the first place.
“There are always things to do,” she repeated his words. He laughed softly. “I have a thing to do right now,” she said, directing the conversation to the purpose of her visit.
“To discuss the over commercialization of Christmas?”
“To discuss the under-appreciation of tradition,” she replied.
To learn more about Hunt for Christmas, Under the Kissing Bough Christmas Collection and Tina DeSalvo, please visit tinadesalvo.com
The Whole Latte:
It’s time to head to the Bayou and celebrate Christmas. Discover what happens when Christmas is threatened and a stranger attempts to ruin Christmas.
When one family try to intervene they will have to change the way the earn their living during the holiday season. Traditions will have to change and hearts will be broken.
As with most things, change is never easy and love hurts now matter how invested your heart is in the relationship. Will Camille find holiday joy this year with a new man in town?
Kick off your shoes, put a fresh pot of coffee on and relax. Good things truly come to those who have patience.
Happy Holidays and thank you for inviting the authors of Under the Kissing Bough Christmas Collection to your wonderful site—I Love Books a Latte, too! I am so humbled to be with so many amazing authors writing novellas for this collection, and can’t wait to read their stories. That’s because I’m a fan of the authors and because I love Christmas books a Latte! I confess, I marathon read Christmas books, marathon watch Christmas movies and will fight little old ladies for the last Christmas book sold on a shelf. Although I’m exaggerating (a little!) on how obsessed I am over Christmas tales, I am sincere in telling you that I adore Christmas stories because they are the very best telling of hope, optimism, joy and love. I hope my story, Hunt for Christmas, is all of those things to readers.
AN IRISH GIFT
Leithprachaun warrior Killian revels in the joy, love, laughter and good craic of life. After all, that’s the treasure he’s been given to protect, the one ingrained within his very soul. But centuries ago, a vengeful Banshee queen cursed his clan and stole all of the vital essences that bind the mortal and Fae worlds. Killian is a warrior, and maintains a façade of good nature and enthusiasm while he battles increasing despair that threatens his soul. He needs an anchor and finds it in an unlikely place.
Kathryn Smithfield is just the type of female Killian could see himself bonding with. Kind, gracious, full of spirit…and mortal. A flaw easy to overlook but he’s not so certain he can ignore the attraction she displays to his best friend, Colin Earl of Keshlea.
A simple matter to persuade Kathryn of his superior attributes but Killian’s plans are derailed by an attack from dark forces intent on destroying both worlds. With help from his Leithprachaun clan, the enemy is defeated and he turns his attention back to the woman who holds his heart in her hands. But Leithprachaun’s are not the lucky sort. A seer reveals that the key to Killian recovering his treasure lies with the choice Kathryn makes under the Kissing Bough. As the clock strikes midnight, will Killian find the salvation he craves? Only time will tell.
The Whole Latte:
A holiday tale of magic, shifters, Leithprachaun’s and a little bit of holiday romance.
Joan’s fans will rejoice with this tale just in time for the holidays.
Joan Kayse loves writing stories that transport readers to other time periods and magical places that she fully believes exist. She lives in Louisville, Kentucky but wishes she could live in Ireland among the beauty and mystical wonders of that island..and the mead. (Ask her about how well she Irish dances :D) She shares her home and keyboard with two baby cats, Cricket Marie and Grayson the Monkey Cat. She believes in HEA and that Prince Charming could be right around the corner.
Um, excuse her, while she peeks around the corner.
Tina De Salvo’s Giveaway
ONE lucky winner will receive a basket filled with Cajun Goodies, including good Cajun Coffee, a nice coffee mug and other southern treats!
Catherine Kean Giveaway
ONE lucky winner will receive a kindle copy of Catherine’s medieval Christmas novella One Knight Under the Mistletoe.
Joan Kayse Giveaway
ONE lucky winner will receive a Kindle download of RUARC: BOUND BY STONE the first in Joan’s Guardian Isle series.
For a chance to win one of these AMAZING prizes please comment and respond to the following questions on this blog post:
What is your favorite holiday movie? Do you have a theme that spans from the dinner served to the people you watch it with?
Contest runs from 11/21/16 thru 11/22/16 6:00 PM
Winner will be announced on this blog post on 11/22/16 sometime after 6:00 PM.
Winner MUST comment on this post within 24 hours to claim their prize or a new winner will be randomly selected.
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