Thursday, June 30, 2011

July Coming Attractions

    Can you believe this year is already half over? We've had so many amazing books and wonderful authors visit the Lair already, and there is yet another half-year yet to come. If July is any indication, you're all going to have a ton of fabulous books stacking up on your teetering TBR piles.

    Check out these wonderful authors visiting us this month:

    On July 5, Patricia Rice returns to the Lair with the latest in her Rebellious Sons historical series, The Devilish Montague. Join Patricia and Nancy and see how a stolen parrot brings Blake Montague and Jocelyn Byrd-Carrington to the altar.

    Then on July 7th, Aunty Cindy hosts Rita Nominee Kendra Leigh Castle whose new series Dark Dynasties debuted a few days ago with Dark Awakening. (Aunty drools over hunky cover)
    Will a vampire's vow of eternal protection stop the evil forces a human Seer has the power to awaken...or will he unleash her dark destiny?

    Rose Maybud will be Donna's guest on the 8th. And the fabulously fun MJ Fredrick will be hanging out with Trish on the 9th, chatting about her summer releases.

    Then on Monday, 11th July, Anna Campbell talks to historical romance author Christina Brooke ( about her wonderful new series THE MINISTRY OF MARRIAGE. The first book in the series, HEIRESS IN LOVE, is out in July and it’s a humdinger! And isn’t that such a pretty cover?

    Later in the month, on July 19, thriller author Jon Land makes his Lair debut. He and Nancy will chat about Strong at the Break, the latest installment in his series about fifth-ge neration Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong.

    On Wednesday, 27th July, lair regular Miranda Neville ( and Anna Campbell will talk about Miranda’s fantastic new release THE AMOROUS EDUCATION OF CELIA SEATON. I’m so looking forward to reading this book – Miranda’s THE DANGEROUS VISCOUNT was one of my favorite reads last year.

    Sandy Blair is chatting with Suz on July 28th.

    Lair favorite Marie Force returns on July 31st to celebrate the launch of book three of her "Fatal" series: Fatal Consequences.

    The murder of two members of the Capitol Cleaning Service might’ve been just another homicide investigation—that is If one of them hadn’t been romantically involved with a married senator from Arizona. Racing to catch a killer before he can strike again, Lt. Sam Holland and her fiancé, U.S. Senator Nick Cappuano, attempt to plan a wedding while her colleague Detective Tommy “Gonzo” Gonzales faces life-changing news.

    Whew!! As usual, I'm inspired and impressed by the variety of talented authors who visit with us. And even more impressed with the gorgeous covers!! Wowza, baby. Talk about hot (especially the hot pink). And with even more Bandita fun, be sure to check out this great contest!

    Anna Campbell is running a Mammoth and Midnight contest in July and August. Anna’s giving away THREE signed copies of THE MAMMOTH BOOK OF REGENCY ROMANCE which includes her mini-novella “Upon a Midnight Clear”. Winners will also receive a bonus signed of MIDNIGHT’S WILD PASSION. All you need to do to be in the draw is email Anna on and tell her names of the two characters who appear in the excerpt from “The Chinese Bed” on her website. You’ll find the answer here: The contest closes 31st August, 2011. For more information, please visit Anna’s contest page:

    Now that's enough to keep your July steaming hot, isn't it?! Be sure to drop by the blog all month long, as you can see, we're going to have a great time. Source URL:
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Brooke Book Winners!

    posted by Christina Brooke

    These lucky readers have each won a signed copy of HEIRESS IN LOVE!


    And the hardback goes to...

    Danielle Gorman!

    Please contact me at christina AT christina-brooke DOT com with your snail address details to claim your prize.

    Congratulations, ladies!

    Looking for another chance to win? Anna Campbell and I are running a fabulous double act on facebook--sign up here to win signed hardback copies of HEIRESS IN LOVE and MIDNIGHT'S WILD PASSION!Source URL:
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Free photo offer- again

    This is a photo of my nephew taken earlier today as we wandered from the Cross Bones gates in Southwark to Waterloo station. The photo itself was taken at a sort of skate park by the National Theatre.

    If you live in London or in Essex (but within easy reach of Romford) and would like a free portrait, then contact me at so we can arrange a photo session. I will be happy to send you jpeg prints by email. There is only one condition - that I can use suitable photos on my website. I will not reveal your name if you do not wish me to do so.
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Senate Democrats Warmly Welcome Illegal Aliens

    Senator Durbin wants to give legal status to law breakers
    Washington DC, Jun 30, 2011. The U.S. Senate is currently holding hearings on Sen. Dick Durbin's, D-IL, "Dream Act" that would provide legal status for many people who violated our immigration laws.

    Despite these people being criminals, who clearly violated the laws that Congress wrote, the are now using them to openly testify at these hearings.

    These illegal aliens are participating in these hearings without any threat of arrest from the nation’s chief immigration law enforcement official who was sitting in the front row: Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, D-AZ.

    Many of the illegal immigrants were recognized by name by Sen. Dick Durbin who led the panel, and commended by Obama administration officials who want to give them legal status under sweeping legislation under his DREAM Act.

    The DREAM Act would give permanent legal status to illegal immigrants, up to age 35, who arrived in the United States before age 16, provided they complete two years of college or serve two years in the military.

    “The young people who would be eligible for the DREAM Act call themselves dreamers,” Durbin said. “Over the years, I have met hundreds of these dreamers, and hundreds of them are here today,” Durbin continued.

    Durbin watches, as Obama signs "Fair Sentencing Bill"
    Durbin introduced about a half dozen of the illegal immigrants by name and asked them to stand, as he told their story of how they were brought into the country illegally by their parents.

    Although they had attended U.S. schools, Durbin said they could either not get jobs or faced problems pursing higher education because of their illegal status.

    “Let me ask everyone here today who is a DREAM Act student to stand and be recognized,” Durbin said.

    Nearly everyone in the audience stood. “Thank you so much for being here,” Durbin said.

    Since the Democrats so warmly regard these law breakers, it begs the question as to why they voted for our current immigration law when they had huge majorities in both houses? If they felt these laws are unfair, then why did they pass them? If they didn't like the laws they wrote, then why didn't they repeal them when they had those super majorities?

    Illegal Aliens don't feel they have done anything wrong
    One can only assume they passed tough laws to help win elections, because they knew it was exactly what their constituents wanted.

    Then they ignore their own laws, and actively work to undermine them in an effort to expand their voter base by making these people who violated our law into legal residents.

    It's not a big leap to guess their next step will be to give them voting rights.
    Is this the change you were expecting?Source URL:
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Multiple entry to Atrium Café from 11am to 11pm for a 12-Hour feast of the finest Pan-Asian cuisine

    Accept the Challenge to Dine for 12-hours at Atrium Café, Pyramid Tower Hotel at Sunway Resort Hotel & Spa for only RM55 instead of RM78.90 [30% OFF]. Limited to 500 vouchers.
    Atrium Cafe is located on the Lobby Level of the 4-star Pyramid Tower Hotel, adjacent to the 5-star Sunway Resort Hotel & Spa.

    via milkadeal.comSource URL:
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Taeyang #9 Body That Purifies Eyes

A new session with Nephew and Celena

    © 2011 Shaun P Downey
    I spent a long and very enjoyable and very successful day with Nephew and Celena yesterday. I have nearly 750 photos to process -  something that will take me quite a while to process.

    Needless to say some of them will be posted here!
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flaek kaalen hi

    Almost two years ago, German footwear flaek kicked off a new initiative in hopes of creating a crowdsourced sneaker brand. After much work and deliberation, the brand’s inaugural model, the kaalen hi, is available now. The minimalistic high-top is handmade with the added benefit of having a plethora of sizing options including 15 sizes spread over 4 widths. With this in mind, customers are given the ability to customize sizing relative to differences in fit between the left and right foot. The sneaker is available to start with shipping to Germany, Austria and Switzerland with a retail price of €280 EUR (approximately $396 USD) for a uniform pair (same size for both feet) or €340 EUR (approximately $481 USD) for differential sizing. Available through and 43einhalb.

    via hypebeast.comSource URL:
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adidas Originals 4-Bit

    all-white leather upper with tonal stitching and a Velcro strap fastening. The mid-top profile also has a quilted detailing around the ankle, black accents and an off-white outsole. Priced at €100 (approximately $140 USD), the sneaker is currently available for purchase through No74.Source URL:
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SNSD Cut @ Feeling Good

Supra Indy Pack

    Supra presents their new Fall 2011 Indy Pack. The pack consists of TUF Society, TUF Skytop and the TUF Vaider. Featuring a tricolor color scheme, with all three featuring a tough canvas upper, perfectly matching the tonal outersole and laces. The drop comes just in time for the of July celebrations.


    Supra Thunder Hightop (white canvas)

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New R8 Limited Edition celebrates 10 Le Mans victories for Audi

    Audi has worked up a special edition version of the company's R8 to commemorate the German automaker's victories at Le Mans. Powered by the same 430 horsepower, 4.2-liter V8 found in the base coupe, the R8 V8 Limited Edition models are available with special titanium-effect paint with titanium-toned wheels to match. Those rollers are 19-inch double Y-spoke bits that were crafted in the spitting image of the hardware found on the R8 GT Coupe. Buyers can also expect to find a set of red brake calipers tucked behind the wheels. All of the company's standard metallic and pearl effect paint options will also be available on the commemorative cars.

    Inside, the R8 V8 Limited Edition comes with satellite navigation and Audi Music Interface with a Bang and Olufsen sound system as well as a unique interior lighting package and Bluetooth hands-free calling. Prices start at £93,935 in the UK. That figure translates to around $150,000 (including Britain's costly Value Added Tax), though there's no clear indication as to whether or not any of the 100 examples will make their way to the States or how much Audi will ask U.S. buyers to pay.
    via autoblog.comSource URL:
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    Photos of Norway and Paris to add some wanderlust to your morning. Where would you like to go right now, if you could go anywhere?

    P.S. Click on the top photo; it looks beautiful when it's blown up!

    (Photo credits unknown)Source URL:
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    Southern California - the birthplace of famous hamburgers from McDonald's, Carl's Jr., and In-n-Out Burger - is home to another thriving burger chain that opened its first outlet in 1952. Lovie Yancey thought of the perfect name for the 1/3-pound burgers she sold at her Los Angeles burger joint: Fatburger. Now with over 41 units in California, Nevada, and moving into Washington and Arizona, Fatburger has become the food critics' favorite, winning "best burger in town" honors with regularity. The secret is the seasoned salt used on a big 'ol lean beef patty. And there's no
    ketchup on the stock version, just mayo, mustard, and relish. Replace the ground beef with ground turkey and you've got Fatburger's Turkey burger all up and cloned.

    1/3 pound lean ground beef
    seasoned salt
    ground black pepper
    1 plain hamburger bun
    1/2 tablespoon mayonnaise
    1/4 cup chopped iceberg lettuce
    1 tomato slice
    1/2 tablespoon mustard
    1/2 tablespoon sweet pickle relish
    1 tablespoon chopped onion
    3 dill pickle slices (hamburger slices)

    1 slice American cheese
    Grill the unsuspecting beef patty in a hot frying pan.
    Slap the hot side and the cold side together.

    1. Form the ground beef into a patty that is about 1 inch wider
    than the circumference of the hamburger bun.
    2. Preheat a non-stick frying pan to medium/high heat. Fry the
    patty in the pan for 3 to 4 minutes per side or until done. Season
    both sides of the beef with seasoned salt and ground black pepper.
    3. As the meat cooks prepare the bun by spreading approximately 1/2
    tablespoon of mayonnaise on the face of the top bun.

    file:///E|/Cookbooks and Recipes Collection/300 Secret Recipes - Recipes - McDonald's - Starbucks etc/Fatburger®.txt (1 of 2)7/30/2006 3:15:25 AM

    ----------------------- Page 2-----------------------

    4. Place the lettuce on the mayonnaise, followed by the tomato slice.
    5. When the beef is done place the patty on the bottom bun.
    6. Spread about 1/2 tablespoon of mustard over the top of the beef
    7. Spoon about 1/2 tablespoon of relish over the mustard.
    8. Sprinkle the chopped onion onto the relish.
    9. Arrange the pickles on the chopped onion.
    10. Bring the two halves of the burger together and serve with
    Makes 1 burger.

    If you want cheese on your burger, put a slice of American cheese
    on the face of the bottom bun before adding the beef patty. The
    heat from the meat will melt the cheese.Source URL:
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Gym Class Heroes: Stereo Hearts ft. Adam Levine

Tinie Tempah - Till I'm Gone ft. Wiz Khalifa

On Set of Game's 'Pot of Gold' Video

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A (Surprise!) Release Party for Christina Brooke

    by Christina Brooke (aka Christine Wells)

    Break out the cabana boys and get your dancing shoes on because it's time for a very special SURPRISE Release Party in the lair!

    By the time you read this, I will be at RWA in New York, squeeing and hugging the Banditas and Bandita Buddies who are there, and missing the ones who aren't like crazy. Oh, and hopefully signing copies of my new book, HEIRESS IN LOVE!

    Yes, it's a long time since I had a new book out and finally I can tell you the reason--I'm so thrilled to be writing a brand new Regency historical series for St. Martin's Press, called the Ministry of Marriage or M.O.M. for short. You can read more here.

    The series is about six Westruther cousins, three boys and three girls, who have grown up under the guardianship of the Duke of Montford. In this first trilogy, we begin with the girls, Jane, Lady Roxdale in HEIRESS IN LOVE, Lady Rosamund Westruther (MAD ABOUT THE EARL, January 3, 2012) and Lady Cecily Westruther (A DUCHESS TO REMEMBER, July 2012).

    Here is the official trailer, which gives you an idea of what HEIRESS IN LOVE is about. You can read more on my website.

    Hope you were wearing flame-resistant glasses for that one! And I'm not talking about the candles:)

    When Jane and Constantine first meet, they are immediately at loggerheads. Constantine has inherited the house Jane lives in but she doesn't realize at first who this disturbingly handsome stranger is...

    JANE OPENED HER EYES and a large form filled her vision—or at least, he filled the doorway—dark hair tousled beyond any recognizable style, heavy-lidded eyes trained on her, and a cigarillo clamped between very white teeth.

    She gasped. The rider she’d seen from the upstairs window.

    Now, he was close enough to reach out and touch. He smiled at her around that horrible cigarillo, Jane realized with dismay. Her heart lurched into a frantic dance.

    Jane’s mind fixed on the source of that smoke as a drowning woman might clutch at a rope. She shoved Rosamund’s handkerchief into her pocket and scowled up at him. “I hope you aren’t going to puff on that disgusting thing in here.”

    The man’s green eyes narrowed, observing her for a moment. Then his lips closed around the repellant object. The hollows in his cheeks deepened; the end of the cigarillo glowed amber. Deliberately, he removed the cigarillo from his mouth, tilted his head and blew smoke upward. The stream of cloudy gray passed between his well-formed lips, lifting, clouding, curling in tendrils to caress the plasterwork.

    In that attitude, the slightly stubborn jut of his chin became pronounced. Despite her annoyance at his studied disregard for her wishes, Jane’s fascinated gaze traced the strong lines of his throat as they disappeared into a stark white cravat.

    The stranger turned and pitched the butt off the terrace in a sailing arc, into the rain.

    As if the heavens resented this wanton act, they opened, hurling water down in sheets. The wind gave a ghostly howl. Blood red curtains billowed around him, and the fanciful image of a devil stepping out of hell popped into her head. The gentleman moved inside and closed the long window behind him, shutting out the storm.

    Jane shot from her chair, which brought her within discomfiting distance of the stranger’s tall form. He smelled—not unpleasantly—of horse leathers and rain and the exotic hint of Spanish smoke.

    They both moved at once, and she fetched up against him in a heady brush of palm to chest, side to muscular thigh. Two large, strong hands gripped her upper arms to steady her. “Whoa there.”

    The heat from his palms and fingers seeped into her chilled skin. He seemed even larger than he’d appeared from beneath her window. She had to crane her neck to look up at him and his decided chin.

    A sudden fire glinted beneath those lazy eyelids. She almost expected him to hold her longer, but he unhanded her almost before she’d regained her balance. She retreated a hasty step and the backs of her knees hit her chair.

    The stranger smiled, another flash made brighter by the contrasting swarthiness of his face. “No, no! Don’t go on my account.” His voice, a husky tenor, plucked its way down her spine.

    Jane frowned. Who did he think he was? A gentleman did not barge into private rooms without an invitation. “Oh, I’m not going anywhere. You’ll find the other mourners in the drawing room, sir.”

    “I know. That’s why I’m in the library.” The corners of his eyes crinkled. “You don’t have the faintest idea who I am, do you?”

    She was beginning to think she did.

    As if a new series and a new name weren't exciting enough, I'm delighted to announce that Penguin Australia is releasing the Ministry of Marriage series in trade paperback at the same time as the mass market comes out in the U.S.

    The Australian cover is slightly different from the U.S. one, although the beautiful girl in the pink gown is still there.

    So to celebrate in style with my favourite people in Romancelandia, today I'm offering a signed copy of HEIRESS IN LOVE to FIVE readers who answer this question:

    What's your favourite first meeting in a romance novel? Any cute true life first meeting stories to tell?

    And just for today, in a shameless piece of bribery, I am offering a bonus prize of one HARDBACK edition of HEIRESS IN LOVE! All you have to do to go into the draw is sign up for my newsletter here and tell me in the comments that you've joined my mailing list! Let's party everyone!
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Wednesday giveaway!

    Today's giveaway is from Pinhole Press, one of my favorite companies in the world. They offer beautiful photo gifts, including books, framed photos, notepads and cards. Today, they're offering one lucky reader a personalized guest book. Would it be lovely to have one at home for visiting friends and family to write in? (It feels straight out of a Diane Keaton movie:) You could also make one as a heartfelt wedding or hostess gift.

    For a chance to win, please take a look around Pinhole Press and leave a comment below. A winner will be chosen at random tomorrow. Good luck! xo Update: Bri B. is our lucky winner. Thanks for playing.Source URL:
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Making of Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2011-12 Ad Campaign

Lil Wayne At The 2011 BET Awards In Los Angeles

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