About Once Upon a Word: We're a large group of multi-talented authors working together, to bring you the best romances.

Monday, December 4, 2017

The Happiness Pact by Liz Flaherty #romance #newrelease #Harlequin

It’s never been a secret that I had a bout with clinical depression quite a while ago. It was one of those textbook case things where my doctor and I talked, he gave me a prescription (and monitored my use of it and its success), and all went well. Although there’s a little spot inside of me that is reserved for terror that it will come back, the truth is that life went on. I’ve been blessed. Oh, boy howdy, have I been blessed. Because it’s not that way for everyone.

I didn’t mean, when I started to write The Happiness Pact, for Libby’s story to be about anxiety. Or clinical depression. If I were assigning a trope to the book, I would have said it was an ugly duckling. Libby, after all, has freckles and a few extra pounds and a messy brown braid and is a poster child for average. Ordinary. She is the one who says, “Do you know I’ve stopped wearing brown because I’m afraid I’ll stand up against a tree trunk and disappear because that’s how monochromatic I am? Do you know what people say when they look at our high school yearbook? They say, ‘Who’s the girl standing between Tucker and Arlie? She looks familiar, but I can’t place her.’ That’s why I’m good at hospitality—because I am so much a brown part of the background.”

I was good with that. Good with Libby the way she was. But the plain, the ordinary, the average, the brown—they were all on the surface. Libby is everybody’s best friend. She wrote the book on nice. She’s not beautiful—she’s so average she never wears brown because she’s afraid she’ll get lost in the background. Among friends of many talents, she probably doesn’t have one.

What she has is a secret. Even from Tucker Llewellyn, her best friend since they shared the hospital nursery the night they were born (and from me, I might add.) No one knows that clinical depression and anxiety disorder are the monsters under her bed.

The story of Libby and Tucker’s journey was fun to write—Tucker is the most lovable of klutzes. It was also excruciatingly difficult. I’m so grateful to Jim Cangany for helping me through the murky waters of Libby’s painful illness.

I hope you come along for the ride.
Tucker Llewellyn and Libby Worth—strictly platonic!—realize they’re each at a crossroads. Tucker is successful, but he wants a wife and kids: the whole package. Libby knows that small-town life has her set in her ways; the tearoom owner needs to get out more.

So they form a pact: Libby will play matchmaker and Tucker will lead her on the adventure she desperately needs. But the electricity Libby feels when they shake on it should be a warning sign. Soon the matchmaking mishaps pile up, and a personal crisis tests Libby’s limits. Will Tucker be there for her as a best friend…or something more?

Liz Flaherty thinks one of the things that keeps you young when you quite obviously aren’t anymore is the constant chances you have to reinvent yourself. Her latest professional incarnation is as a Harlequin Heartwarming author and she is enjoying every minute! She’d love to hear from you at lizkflaherty@gmail.com or please come and see her at http://www.facebook.com/lizkflaherty

Monday, November 13, 2017

Paranormal Romantics: Ghosts and Unfinished Business by Karen Michelle ...

Paranormal Romantics: Ghosts and Unfinished Business by Karen Michelle ...

at Paranormal Romantics chatting about Ghosts and unfinished business.
Come on by and share your thoughts.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

A Grumpy Hero is Coming to Town by Cheryl Harper #Christmasstories #boxset

My hero Carter never did much celebrating of any holiday, and the over-the-top fairytale atmosphere of Christmas Town takes some serious adjustment. Only one person in the world could lure him out of his town, New York City. And only one person could convince him not to give up on her: the same guy who’d left him with a shiny red truck and a sweet red dog, things he’d never imagined he’d own in his lifetime. 

I share a little bit of Carter’s bemusement over Christmas decoration, usually when I’m standing in the pet food aisle of the local big box store and become aware of a large, looming presence over my shoulder. The massive Rudolph is watching me. In September. It’s a lot to swallow. Like Carter, for me the season comes into focus in the small moments, the kindness of strangers and the love that seems especially sweet in the holiday season. He’s grumpy and ragged around the edges, thanks to his beginning and his choices, but I like him. Here’s a bit of Carter.

This holiday season, warm your heart with 10 connected sweet, clean & wholesome holiday romances set in Christmas Town from 10 Harlequin Heartwarming authors who are USA Today bestselling authors. 

This collection of PG-rated holiday romances are all set in Christmas Town, Maine, a location introduced in the 2014 Harlequin Heartwarming release Christmas, Actually. 

A Heartwarming Holiday will bring you laughter, tears, and happily-ever-afters (no cliffhangers), for more than 1000 pages.

Santa's Secret Heart by Anna Adams
Merry Christmas Carol by Melinda Curtis
Miracle on Joyful Street by Liz Flaherty
Finding His Fiancée by Christmas by Cheryl Harper
The Christmas Window by Tara Randel
Mistletoe and Holly by Leigh Riker
Gingerbread Girl by Carol Ross
The Christmas List by Anna J Stewart
A Case for Christmas Magic by Amy Vastine
Jingle Bell Love by Cari Lynn Webb

About Finding His Fiancée:

Dara Allen has retreated to Christmas Town in order to hide from a broken heart. Life there has softened some of her edges without changing her style. When ex-NYC cop Carter Howe follows her, they’ll have to come to terms with what’s true, what matters, and messages from a friend.

Carter studied Boomer’s nest. “You warm enough, pal?” He scooped the fleece throw decorated with dog bones tighter under Boomer’s legs. The old dog sighed happily and blinked up at him, warm brown eyes sleepy but determined not to miss a thing. “Need a walk?” He stared down the street at what he figured had to be the town pet store. “Pawsitively Merry. Unbelievable.”

He managed to say the name without grimacing, so he was making steady progress.
Convincing Dara to give him a second shot might take some time. Snorting every time someone said a street name or business wouldn’t win him any friends.

When Boomer’s tail thumped hard on the seat, Carter said, “Yeah, I get the message. Let’s go for a walk, then we’ll get out of the snow. I can try again tomorrow.”

He was certain she’d still been in Dockery’s, but short of staging some kind of scene, what could he do? She had to be shocked to see him. After a year, she could have assumed he’d given up, moved on.
The last thing he wanted to do was spook her into running anywhere else.

As soon as Carter opened the truck door, Boomer slid carefully out. He ran across the street and paused to sniff the garland strung across white picket fence. “White. Picket. Fence. This place is unreal.” People were milling around the gazebo, cups of steaming hot chocolate in hand, even while the fat flakes of snow that had been threatening or dusting ever since he’d left the city floated steadily down. “Might as well be in inside a snow globe.”

A truly cliché Mrs. Claus-type beamed broadly at him as if she agreed and appreciated his comment. Her smile slipped at his dark frown, so he said, “Come on, Boomer. Let’s go get a treat.”

Everywhere he looked, something or someone was jingling or flashing bright lights or singing a carol. Red or green or some combination of both covered coats, hats, and buildings as far as he could see. It was kind of cute, but he couldn’t imagine living with it. The single guy dressed head to toe in gray and conspicuous by his lack of heavy winter coat stuck out like the single dead bulb on a strand of colorful lights.

For her, he’d stay. He could do it. His attire, perfectly suited to life in New York, would label him a visitor, and one not too in love with the town’s theme at that, but no one would call him on it. This was a nice town filled with happy souls.
He’d get out as fast as he could.

About the Author:
Cheryl Harper discovered her love for books and words as a little girl, thanks to a mother who made countless library trips and an introduction to Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House stories. Now she spends her days searching for the right words while she stares out the window and her dog snoozes beside her. Website