Haberdashers as Friends Episodes

What is the MAIN thing about the Haberdashers books? (Well, other than the romance.) Friendship! So I thought it would be fun to figure out what each book would be titled if it were a Friends episode. Crank up the Rembrandts and put on your ratty jeans, we’re going into the wayback machine to the 90s.

The One Where Jack Save the Earl
The One Where Sabre Fights the Duke
The One With the Spies
The One With the Psychic
The One at the House Party
The One in Paris
The One With the Smugglers
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Catching Up With the Haberdashers

Today the seventh book in the Haberdashers series, Justice for Sisyphus, hits the virtual shelves. We know the hero, because he’s the steward of Kellington from the first book. Trials of Artemis. You remember, the steward who was fired for hiding smuggling from the earl. Oops.

Haberdashers Books One to Seven

In case you’ve forgotten, the smugglers in the first book were one of the plots that weaves through the series. There’s also the Hellfire Club known as The Four. Or wait, is that the same plot? It’s all starting to come together in book seven, Justice for Sisyphus. Along with our hero and heroine Philip and Desdemona we have returning heroes and heroines Gideon, Jacqueline, Robert, Casimir, and George. Bobbins makes an appearance, who will soon be a hero in his own right with the upcoming Christmas novella Secrets of the Season. And we also meet the hero of the twelfth and final book… but I’ll just leave you wondering about that.

The arc of Act II will conclude in book eight, Loving Echo, which should be out in a couple of months. Then it will be time to drive towards the epic conclusion. Why would we need to gather together so many heroes and heroines of both brain and brawn. Well, you’ll see.

News, Romance

Justice for Sisyphus

It’s finally time! Book seven in the Haberdashers series will be out this month! An army officer and young widow are falling in love, but each has a dark past they are afraid to share. Pre-Order on your favorite platform!

An army officer and young widow are falling in love, but each has a dark past they are afraid to share.

Philip Gladstone joined the Army after the shame of leaving Lord Harington’s service under suspicion of smuggling. Through hard work and dedication he has risen to the rank of Lieutenant. Upon mustering out he meets a beautiful young widow whom he thinks may have feelings for him, but fears telling her about his past.


The SUSAN for a Comedy!

Another defining thing about me is that I love comedy. L.O.V.E. And this book by Annika Martin definitely stood out as the most mad-cap comedy I read in 2020, which means it had the most lols per hour. Heck, I’m laughing right now thinking about…. well, I won’t tell you. That spoils the whole thing.

You can find all of Annika’s books with buy links on her website.

GIVEAWAY: No time for fancy giveaway widgets and rules. If you want a chance at winning this book (or a different book by the author if you already have this one) just drop a comment here, respond to my tweet, comment on the associated Facebook post, etc. I will select a winner from one of those assorted entries. Good luck and happy reading!!!


The SUSAN for a Series!

At first it made sense to put this award at the end, but I’m not sure yet where the end will be. So let’s put it at the front! Something defining about my reading style is that I love a series. I will swallow them whole. Jackie Lau is pretty much an insta-buy for me, so it was no surprise that I loved The Cider Sister series as soon as she kicked it off last year.

The Cider Sisters released 3 titles in 2020 and is still going in 2021

You can find all of Jackie’s books with buy links on her website Jackie Lau Books #asianromcom.

GIVEAWAY: No time for fancy giveaway widgets and rules. If you want a chance at winning the first book in Jackie’s series (or a different book by Jackie if you already have this one) just drop a comment here, respond to my tweet, comment on the associated Facebook post, etc. I will select a winner from one of those assorted entries. Good luck and happy reading!!!

News, Romance

A Visit from McKenna Dean!

To celebrate releasing a new book I thought it would be fun to celebrate OTHER authors and their new releases. Today we have a guest post from McKenna Dean! Her new book Bishop Takes Knight is an AMAZING paranormal romance. You can grab it at Goodreads & Amazon ​.

Why Heroes Need Flaws

My husband and I frequently discuss our favorite superheroes and the pros and cons of the Marvel vs the DC Comics universes. We have a lot of material right now—both Marvel and DC Comics have brought out a multitude of shows and movies. I admit to leaning a bit more on the side of Marvel vs DC Comics, but then I am a huge fan of Captain America and Agent Carter. We’ve watched The Flash, Supergirl, and Arrow, as well as Agents of Shield and all the Avengers movies. The Batman franchise leaves me cold (though I have watched the movies in the past) and I had some real issues with the Man of Steel movie, but I adored the Wonder Woman movie. I’ve watched it several times and bought a copy as soon as it became available on DVD.

I’ll be honest, though I wanted to love the Aquaman movie—I’m a Stargate fan and have enjoyed Jason Momoa as Ronon Dex—it fell a bit short of the mark for me. All the things I love about superhero movies: the origin story, the character arc where he/she comes into their own, the defeat of the bad guy, the action laced with humor—all these elements were there in Aquaman, and yet the dialog was a little flat, the humor didn’t quite zing, the battle scenes were a bit too obviously CGI. So while I give DC high marks for Wonder Woman, overall, I’m a Marvel Girl.

Though we’ve watched Supergirl, my husband has a real problem with the invulnerability of both Supergirl and Superman. From what I’ve seen in various movies and shows, the kids from Krypton are bulletproof (and impervious to pain and illness), can fly (and leave the atmosphere without their lungs exploding), and in general seem pretty undefeatable. Which, as far as my husband is concerned, makes them less interesting as characters, Krypton notwithstanding.

I see his point.

When they released the trailer for the movie Batman vs Superman, my initial reaction was, really? Is there any question of the outcome? And while I’m here, what is it with movie trailers giving away 90% of the film? I feel as though I’ve seen the whole thing already, just from the trailer alone… but I digress. Right. Regardless of how much of a Bruce Wayne fan we might be, the fact is, Superman as portrayed on film and in the comics is nigh-on invincible. Unless Bruce has a shaft of Kryptonite in his pocket (and is not just happy to see Superman), then it is unlikely he’s going to win this one.

Which brings me to the point of this post: your hero has to have vulnerability for the reader to identify with him or her.

I read a story recently in which the heroine was utterly fearless, competent, and seemingly without self-doubt. I hated her. There are some people who’d suggest my dislike of this character reflected some sort of internal misogyny because I’m incapable of liking a strong female character. That’s not the case at all. There’s nothing better than a strong female character. Most of my favorite books feature enviable female leads. I disliked this character because she was too perfect. Even in her tiniest moments of self-doubt, she didn’t feel real to me. In the end, I didn’t care what happened to her, either. Blame it on the lack of tension, or the lack of connection with the character, but I just didn’t care. She had too much: too many resources, too much money, too many connections, too much respect. In fact, there was no reason to suspect she wouldn’t solve the case from the get-go, and I yawned my way through the story. When the killer was revealed, I didn’t believe that either, I’m afraid.
So my advice to you is this: remember your reader wants to identify with your characters. The joy of reading for many people lies in self-insertion into the story, and this is difficult when the main character bears little resemblance to a human being. Be cautious of loving your character so much you elevate them to godhood. Give them relatable characteristics. Make us doubt just a little if they can get themselves out of the situation they are in. Show the soft underbelly. Make them vulnerable. Maybe they aren’t cool under pressure, or maybe they get a little too carried away when they’re in charge. Give them a boss that doesn’t like them, or something to prove. Make the stakes high for them. Make sure they grow during the course of your story. Don’t set them on a pedestal at the beginning. Show us the progression towards heroism. Your readers will love you for it.

Bishop Takes Knight

New York, 1955. Former socialite Henrietta (“Rhett”) Bishop, destitute after her father gambles away the family fortune, takes a job at Redclaw Security. But Redclaw is no ordinary operation. Part detective firm and part enforcement agency, Redclaw regulates matters involving the growing population of shifters who have emerged since the onset of the nuclear age.

Peter Knight is a nuclear scientist shattered by the death of his wife. Blacklisted by the government and scientific organizations, he drowns his sorrows while searching for the people behind his wife’s murder.

When Rhett is assigned to recruit Knight, their meeting is more than either bargained for—a rival organization will do anything to secure Knight for themselves. Following a lead to locate a missing cache of alien technology stolen from Redclaw, Rhett is thrown back into her previous glittering life with Knight as her pretend boyfriend. But when someone from the past turns up to start a bidding war on the artifacts, Bishop and Knight wind up in a fight for their very lives.

About the Author

McKenna Dean has been an actress, a vet tech, a singer, a teacher, a biologist, and a dog trainer. She’s worked in a genetics lab, at the stockyard, behind the scenes as a props manager, and at a pizza parlor slinging dough. Finally she realized all these jobs were just a preparation for what she really wanted to be: a writer.

She lives on a small farm in North Carolina with her family, as well as the assorted dogs, cats, and various livestock.

She likes putting her characters in hot water to see how strong they are. Like tea bags, only sexier.

Website * Newsletter * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram
Pinterest * Bookbub * Amazon * Goodreads ​

Check out the Bishop Takes Knight book tour at

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Kenny Rogers, Ice Water, and Why I Need to Sell 10,000 Books in 30 Days

Pre-order links are live on KINDLE and NOOK.

Ok, so I’m a little hazy on the details. But back in the day, close to thirty years ago now, hubs and I got into one of our Knowledge Arguments. It was something about Kenny Rogers. When two Ravenclaws get together this happens. A lot. Suffice to say this took place a wee bit before answers could be immediately googled up on a mobile device. Bets were made. I don’t even remember what my potential boon could be because I was the loser. And my payment was to get hubs ice water anytime he wanted it. Thirty years, people, and I have been on it. He even joked to a friend once “I don’t worry about getting lost in the desert because I know I’ll just need to ask Sue for ice water and she’ll find a way to fulfill the request.”

Fast forward to present day. I’ve been slow to get book six of my series out on the street. So slow that my sales have slowed down to an absolute dribble. Hubs asks what I think sales will be for the new release. I say “good.” He makes a skeptical noise and I give him an eyebrow, and then he says, “Fine. If you sell 10,000 copies in the first month I will never doubt you again.” Y’all. Y’ALL. It is ON. I don’t need to be ‘right’ this time, I just need to win. And I know I can because of YOU. Retweet, reblog, call your mom, whatever you can do to HELP MAKE THIS HAPPEN. I believe in you. Do you believe in me?

Pre-order links are live on KINDLE and NOOK.

Pre-order links are live on KINDLE and NOOK.