Monthly Archives: March 2016

Announcing Heather Hiestand’s July 7th release and a new @Kindleworlds @KairaRouda

laguna beach graphicI’m so excited to announce that I’ll be joining Kaira Rouda in Laguna Beach for the launch of her Kindle World! Yes, it’s my long awaited return to contemporary romance…

More than 10 of your favorite authors will be writing stories in beautiful, sunny Laguna Beach and some of the beloved characters from the series will be making an appearance. All books (including my A Treasure in Laguna) will be launched on July 7, just in time to fill your Kindle before heading to the pool or the beach! More soon and, I’ll see you in Kaira Rouda’s Laguna Beach world.

Laguna Beach Series:

My #Smoothie Journey: Getting Back to the Green with @CalifiaFarms Toasted Coconut Almond Milk

IMG_0521The weather is supposed to move into the nice part of spring this week, instead of the cold, rainy version we’ve been experiencing, and my thoughts are turning from warm vegetable curry to smoothies. I’m not quite ready to break out the ice, but a bit of frozen fruit does a body good. My husband and I both enjoyed this sweet smoothie yesterday during a break from eating chocolate eggs and jelly beans. This smoothie hit the spot so completely that I went out later on to buy more fruit, ready for the warm weather starting tomorrow.

Sweet Green Smoothie

serves 2

  • 2 cups spinach
  • 1 cup Califia Farms Almond Milk, toasted coconut flavor (yum!)
  • 1/2 cup frozen pineapple
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1/2 cup cold water

Blend first four ingredients for about 30 seconds in a high speed blender and divide between two cups. Then pour in the cold water and reblend to get some of the spinach stuck along the blender walls back into your cup, and divide that between your serving cups as well. Sweet and refreshing!

almond coconut

When Historical Fiction Gets Real: Finding Emotional Truth

greekcomedytragedyThe terrorist attacks in Belgium today settle on me uneasily as an author of historical fiction. As I blithely changed the timeline on my work in progress , I wondered what historical events I might be missing that might distract the characters in my novel, or even affect them. Characters live in larger worlds than our plots. For instance, my current hero is from Sicily. What might have been happening in his hometown during that week I just added to my story because I realized my plot timeline was too tight?

The other issue that concerns me is how I write about circumstances like what happened in Belgium today. My upcoming series (debuts 9/27/16), The Grand Russe Hotel, is concerned with Russian immigrants in England. Most of them are solid citizens trying to restart their lives after the Russian revolution, but some are Bolsheviks hoping to disrupt the British government. There are bombers and bomb threats and even actual bombs. Danger for all, a very real situation. As I writer, I need to make sure to keep the emotion tangible. It’s not just a plot. My characters need to feel the fear that is present in Europe today in the midst of so much sorrow, uncertainty, and despair. I must remember to keep my world of 1925 London three-dimensional. The terrorists of 2016 are different than those of 1925, but the emotions of those living through the experience are the same as those suffering today.

If we want readers to bond with our characters, understanding the mindset of people in crisis is very important. And if we can give our characters happy endings despite the traumas they live through, hopefully it can give readers a feeling of closure and hope that all is not lost, no matter how dark the sky that day.


Rakes and Cakes are back: Trifling Favors by Heather Hiestand Releases Today

Trifling Favors cover200x300BUY LINKS


 The sweetest treat is a kiss…

Greggory Redcake’s plate is full. Widowed young and left with two small children, the manager of the Kensington location of the illustrious tea shop is besieged on all sides between the bakery and family matters. If only his remarkably efficient shop assistant, Betsy Popham, could manage his home life, too! But Greggory can’t linger on thoughts of Betsy’s fetching smile when a dead body is discovered in the bakery…

Betsy has no time for romance, not even with the delectable Mr. Redcake, whose kisses are all too unforgettable. Haunted by a specter from her family’s past, Betsy is terrified that the man blackmailing her has turned to deadly violence. Yet the only way to save her position–and possibly her life–is to accept Greggory’s help as their delicious attraction sweetens into the tantalizing promise of true love…


P.S. Be sure to check out today’s newsletter for a series secret revealed!

Trifling Favors by Heather Hiestand Blog Tour

ET_TriflingFavors_Banner copyVisit all the blogs to read an exclusive excerpt and enter the Rafflecopter for a chance to win a gift card!

March 14: Rogue’s Angels
March 14: It’s Raining Books
March 15: BooksChatter
March 16: Writer Wonderland
March 17: LibriAmoriMiei – review
March 18: A Writer’s Life
March 21: Booklover Sue
March 22: Rachel Brimble Romance
March 23: Deal Sharing Aunt
March 24: EskieMama Reads
March 25: Lisa Haselton’s Reviews and Interviews
March 28: Buried Under Romance – review
March 29: A to Z Reviews
March 30: Archaeolibrarian – I Dig Good Books!
March 31: Punya Reviews…
April 1: Louise Lyndon Romance Author Hear Me Roar
April 4: Welcome to My World of Dreams
April 5: T’s Stuff
April 6: Two Ends of the Pen
April 7: Queen of All She Reads – review
April 8: Laurie’s Thoughts and Reviews

Scandalously Yours Boxed Set releases March 8th: $.99 #Preorder

UTS_ScandalouslyYours_BoxSetKindleSizeWhat was socially acceptable in ancient Greece raised eyebrows in Victorian England, but of course many mores that would have been quite acceptable in most societies over the centuries would have scandalized the very proper ladies and gentlemen of Queen Victoria’s court.

“Refined deportment” was a course of study for young women, proper conduct being a measure of social standing and success—as well as a necessity for those wanting to be granted entry to the growing upper classes. There were rules for everything, and they varied according to one’s location, the situation, and so on. Mourning was strictly enforced, with relatives of the dearly departed constrained against wearing colors or attending pleasurable functions for specific periods of time, depending on the closeness of the relationship.

Widows, poor souls, were expected to wear full mourning for two years—and it didn’t matter if they were thrilled that their husbands had left them in peace by kicking up their toes! What if the merry widow looked ghastly in black? It was a scandal if she chose to disregard convention and switch her bombazine “widow’s weeds” for the milder mourning forms of gray, mauve, or white! (My thanks to this site for focusing me on Victorian etiquette. Take a look—you’ll learn much about what it took to be a lady or gentleman during that era!

Needless to say, Victorian customs lent themselves to creating a “ton” of scandal, and Anh Leod’s “Aphrodite’s Necklace” points out the schism between acceptable behavior in the age of the Greek gods and Victorian times. While “Madamoiselle Makes a Match” focuses on the underside of Victorian behavior, it points out that in every society up to that time, there were standards that weakened for young gentlemen seeking their pleasures, while women of the lower classes were still expected to “act like ladies” even if that sometimes meant starvation.

Scandalously Yours is a box set of eight stories by bestselling, award-winning authors whose stories range from ancient and medieval Celtic settings to Regency England, post-Civil War Missouri, and the American west. Whatever the period, the awesome tales of love’s triumph over conflict will warm your hearts!


From Wilder’s Thief, by USA Today bestseller, Josie Jax

Well, she was robbing a bank. That certainly qualified her as barmy. But dang it all to hell, she couldn’t afford to slip into the coddling arms of her wild imagination, not in the middle of a cussed hold-up of all things.

From Aphrodite’s Necklace, by Anh Leod:

Holding such expensive gems made her feel funny, as if her heart and senses wanted to jump out of her skin. What felt almost like a cool breeze lifted her skirt and the air caressed her womanflesh. She shuddered and looked around. Thankfully, no one was paying any attention to her.

From Madamoiselle Makes a Match, by Kate Rothwell

Summoning all of her bravery, she darted in and landed a quick kiss on his chin but then backed away at once. “There. I was the first to touch. You want to touch me now?”

From Seducing Laura, by Lynne Connolly

That reminder of her one disastrous youthful indiscretion nettled Laura. It was something she preferred to forget. She sipped her tea and allowed her quick temper to subside within her. “That was an entirely different case, and our parents dealt with it smartly. Besides, I wasn’t an heiress. Belinda is. You know we have to be constantly on our guard against fortune hunters.”

From The Brass Octopus, by Maeve Alpin

“You seem uncharacteristically bothered. You do love to judge others, but you are usually quite calm about it–especially here among all your friends…the books.” Polly’s eyes gleamed as she flashed a wry smile. “What did he do?”

“He read a passage of Early Experiences out loud.”

From Beneath a Cornish Moon, by Ann Jacobs

The night seemed as fitting as any might be to stand vigil o’er her sire’s earthly remains. While her silent future husband stood the first watch at the foot of the bier, Lea sat beside the window, her head bowed as she fingered her rosary beads.

Silently Lea grappled with stark reality. She glanced toward Alain. His expression told her naught. He appeared as dark as the night, as mysterious as the Eucharist. No less overwhelming now than when he had worn full armor, he made her tremble, yet lent her strength by his presence.

A strength Lea appreciated more as hours went by and she endured the rituals of saying farewell.

From Timeless Voyage, by Cornelia Amiri

Her captive’s extraordinary eyes, fathomless as the sea, drew her to him. How could a Roman be so handsome?

Thoughts swam in her head. I do not know him. Even if I did, he’s a Roman. I have to hate him.

Laig the Dark headed scowled. “We leave no survivors, save for the Roman slaves we set free.”


From Wooing the Librarian, by Jane Leopold Quinn

In his life before becoming a preacher, in his bounty hunting days, he wouldn’t have bothered with a proper looking woman. He’d needed the easy, no commitment, no responsibility, no-morning-after type of woman back then. It was all different for him now. Now he wanted the morning-after woman, the family, the promise of forever.

About Scandalously Yours authors:

In August 2014, a well-known publisher of erotic romances announced a downturn: slowed sales, layoffs of editors and cover artists, and most important, later and later royalty payments. Authors began requesting reversion of rights, and subsequently a group formed, consisting mostly of former authors of this publisher. Box sets had become the project of the time, and so Under the Sun Publishing was formed as a division of Inkwell Royalty Solutions, to revise former titles from this publisher and bring those that fit the UTS guidelines out in box sets. We have since expanded our offerings to include books originally published elsewhere and never-before-published novels and novellas.

The guidelines: all books would be romances between one man and one woman, sensual to frankly erotic but without the coarse language many readers find objectionable. The first of these sets was released in September 2015, followed by two more in October and November. Book four, the first historical set, was delayed while we evaluated effectiveness of promotion, and Scandalously Yours will enjoy a twenty-stop blog tour before and immediately after its release on March 8, at multiple booksellers rather than as Kindle exclusives.

Under the Sun hopes readers will enjoy the stories it has compiled for them and pass the word along that its box sets are not only great reading but also great bargains!

Buy links:—

All Romance Ebooks–



Books will also be available at and iTunes (Apple), but buy links are not yet available for them.