As many of you may know, our beloved sister hostess SHARON DONOVAN, tragically passed away on 11th April 2012. We who knew her, loved her, and were inspired by her courage and determination to face head on whatever life threw at her. When she could no longer see to paint she turned to writing and showed her amazing talent in the Inspirational Romance and Romantic Suspense genres, and her story 'Charade Of Hearts' was awarded the coveted Predators and Editors Award in January 2011.

This Blog was a source of great delight to her, she was one of the founder hostesses and she contributed to the fun and silliness in her own original way, and was kind enough to let her unique creation, the hunky butler 'Oliver' join us for our Friday romp and prepare 'virtual breakfast' for the guests on the following morning. It's beyond hard to have to go on without her, but we know that she would have been the first to insist that 'the show must go on.' She is, and will always be with us in spirit.
Sharon, dear friend, we will never forget you.
The Author Roast and Toast is part of the legacy you left us. Let's raise a Toast to you as well as all our guests.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Pat Dale's Winner is...

Congratulations  Sue! I'm sure you'll enjoy your prize of one of Pat's books.

Sharon, Mary and Lyn appear on-stage, holding hands, to take a bow
They hug each other and wave before leaving the stage.

"Just another Roast and Toast!"

Thanks to Pat for being such a delghtful guest, and to everyone who commented and made this Roast such fun. We really appreciate all the great comments.

Join us again 5th August

when we'll be roasting  BRENDA WHITESIDE at

    Friday, July 29, 2011

    Pat Dale's country Roast

    Hello and welcome to the Author Roast and Toast! The hostesses are pleased and honored to roast our very first male author! Pat Dale is a multi-published author with a talent for writing as well as music and has a wicked sense of humor to boot. We are at The River’s Edge, a tavern located in Larabie, Nebraska. On a bluff high above the Missouri River, just below the point where the river turns northward across South Dakota, the bar affords a fantastic view of the wild natural scene, with eagles flying high above while deer and turkey roam at will through the trees on the hilly slope.

    We are celebrating the release of Pat’s novel DANCE WITH THE DEVIL

    So join us today for a rip-roaring devilish good time. Cuddles and Nibby, donned in party hats, stand on either side of the tavern, blowing trumpets of welcome. The hostesses, looking stunning in festive party dresses, Sharon a rich burgundy, Lyn a deep crushed purple, and Mary in soft midnight blue, greet Pat with a kiss and a smile when he struts through the double swinging door looking devilishly handsome in a navy suit and tie. The patrons break into thunderous applause.

    Pat Dale, come on in!

    “Oh, Pat, you handsome devil,” Sharon gushes, wiggling her cute little bubble butt. “You must promise me a game of pool later or maybe even a spin about the dance floor. I just love country music! We’ll put The Devil went Down To Georgia on the jukebox.”

    “Thank God I’m a country boy!” Pat grins. We’ll Dance with the Devil tonight!”

    “What about me,” Lyn pouts, stomping her oh so elegant size 12 lace-up boot, earning a wink from Pat. “I already have y’all marked on my dance card for Devil Wears Blue jeans, you sexy thing you!”

    Mary tempts Pat with a teasing smile, adjusting the locket between her ample cleavage. “I have to boogie the night away with Pat to The Devil’s Train by Hank Williams.”

    Oliver, donned like a lumberjack in flannel shirt and blue jeans, flips mouth-watering burgers, chicken pot pies, hot dogs, onion rings, fried taters sizzling with onions, pots of baked beans, meat loaf, grilled turkey and pork bellies. He also mans the bar with a wink and a smile while serving beer and soft drinks.

    The bar is a full half block long, with the main door on the northeast corner and a side door about half way back. Heavily clad with knotty pine siding (not paneling), it features a classic bar, including a massive hutch displaying every liquor known to man, though the bar’s patrons are essentially beer drinkers. Known as a watering hole for local cattlemen and ranchers, the Edge prides itself in mouth-watering burgers,
    deep-fried onion blossoms and succulent French fries.

    With the bar extending from the front door to the side door, the rest of the tavern is given over to two rows of square tables with chairs. Across the south side of the room, ten massive booths support eight people each, giving the place occupancy of some eighty revelers. The back of the room is given over to three shuffleboard tables, a partitioned off dart court, and a huge felt-lined pool table.

    On occasion, the bulk of the tables can be stacked in a corner, affording a wood floored dance area, though rarely used for that purpose. In this utilitarian corner of the nation, simple pleasures suit the peoples’ fancy more than dancing. A juke box, strategically placed for easy access provides a constant hum of country music. Rock fans need not bother looking through the available menu for their favorite rock tunes—there are none.

    July 15th, 2011 was a very special day in Larabie. After all, how often does a sleepy little village on the literal edge of civilization get to debut a novel? No matter the novel is not very complimentary to the community, it is publicity. A chance for that mythical fifteen minutes of fame. Come on, folks, let’s party!

    The town has a bakery, and a cook who bakes the world’s most delicious angel food cake. And pastries, from colatchees  and iced Danish, to chocolate éclairs and crème horns, any resident with a sweet tooth must surely be familiar with the Bakery Café. So, today, we’ve brought along platters of gaily decorated rolls and pastries.

    A decadent angel food cake, with white icing to set off the black cover of the book being celebrated sits pretty on a sidebar.

    We hope you enjoy yourselves at the tavern. Pat has graciously offered to give an autographed copy of one of his other books, Crossed Line. For a chance to win, please answer the following question.

    Name Pat’s all time favorite country song.


    Buddy Wilson’s teaching career traps him in a community where infidelity, illegitimacy, and incest seem the norm. He escapes from his unfaithful wife only to be caught up by his growing obsession with Robin Blaik, a younger woman he’s befriended. When their relationship grows too hot to cool down, they must face demons from their common past.


    Thinking back, Buddy Wilson remembered the day his life started to unravel…

    Driving slowly along the aged blacktop’s serpentine path, with the long-silent railroad bed on one side and Crooked Creek on the other, he recalled the first time he’d traveled the bumpy old highway six years ago when he came to Larabie to interview. Superintendent Bob Merrick had painted a glowing picture of life in this pristine Nebraska village, a holdover from pioneering decades.

    Merrick! His ears burned from the man’s sick question an hour earlier. Paula and her boss having an affair? No way!

    For the hour since then, he’d driven aimlessly, wanting not to believe Merrick’s insinuation. Now, as he came back through town, his attention focused on the outpost. After all, that was all this village was; a dumpy little outpost with none of the charm he’d been promised. Why should he take the word of that man now?

    He scanned the rows of homes along the roadside that had given the erroneous impression of prosperity. Only after he’d agreed to the contract and begun to look for housing did he learn that many of them had been vacant for a quarter of a century. The post war boom had borne within itself the seeds of economic disaster.

    Big old multi-generational farm homes had been abandoned when men found it easier to drive from town to do their work. Families fragmented and fled to small modern houses in the villages of rural America. Small towns flourished for a time as better and larger equipment made it possible for fewer men to work even bigger tracts. But, there had not been sufficient jobs for all those no longer needed on the farms.

    So, after generations of migration into the little villages, a pioneer counter-flow of humanity began moving away from the farms and villages, back to urban civilization. Bitter-sweet irony played its sad song across the fruited plains. And, because brighter and more adventuresome folk were inclined to move elsewhere to find their fortune, many who’d been left behind were stubborn, lazy, recalcitrant, or just plain dumb.

    Larabie had found itself with a fair share of each category, not that everyone here was lazy or dumb. More than a few industrious souls persevered in this valley, some who’d been here for generations. But many, like Buddy, were relative newcomers.
    Photo of Lago Grey Hosteria and Navegacion is courtesy of TripAdvisor
    By the time his thoughts returned to the present, he’d passed his own street as well as the bowling alley where Paula and he would be on Thursday night. Or would they? 


    *Curtain photo of Lago Grey Hosteria and Navegacion is courtesy of TripAdvisor
    Soaring Eagle picture by Rolf Hicker

    To win a copy of one of Pat's book, all you have to do is just leave a comment and your e-mail address.
    Contest ends tomorrow and everyone who comments is elligible.

    Friday, July 22, 2011

    Paula Martin's West End show Party Roast for 'His Leading Lady'

    It’s opening night at the musical “Token of Love”, in London’s West End. The musical is based on the story written by Paula Martin,  from her recent release “His Leading Lady”.

    The girls from the Author Roast and Toast are dressed to the nines! They are wearing evening gowns and look spectacular Mary in her deep green gown, with its generous bodice, Lyn in her deep blue gown that is just short of the ground and shows her generous feet, and Sharon in a deep burgundy gown, snug around her generous butt.

    Cuddles and Nibbie aren't allowed into the ballroom, of course, so donned in their own little Tam o'shanters, they'll be having their own party.

    The Limo pulls up to the  spectacular Lancaster Ballroom at the world famous Savoy Hotel overlooking the river Thames.
    Oliver steps out of the passenger side, he helps each of them get out of the Limo and walks them into the Ballroom. He excuses himself while the girls find their tables and he goes to get the guest of honor. He looks spectacular as always in his dress kilt. The girls are all excited, never having been to an opening before.

    Paula  strolls in on Oliver’s substantial arm and he leads her to the table that the Author Roast and Toast Hostess’s wait. They welcome their guest and suggest she partakes of  the lovely food arranged for them all today.

    Today’s celebration has a true Scottish flavor. So everyone is there for this exciting event. They wave to Algelina and Brad, Gerard Butler in his newly worked over body and Josh Halloway,  all of whom have flown in to London specially, Sean Connery,  the Beckhams - oh and is that Pippa Middleton over there?

    The ballroom is packed as the orchestra breaks into a gentle tune.

    The food is typically Scotch. A finger buffet that includes wonderful Scottish Salmon,
    Abroath Smokey Haddock fishcakes,
    Grampian chicken,
    Aberdeen Angus Mini Steaks,
    neeps and tatties
    customarily served
    with haggis
    Whiskey Mac Prawns, Haggis in puff pasty, Mini Scotch eggs, neeps and tatties, dips and salads followed by the usual desserts.

    Scottish Whiskey Walnut tarts, Scottish shortbread with strawberries and Drambuie sauce, Cranachan, Dundee cake, Flapjacks, Drambuie orange segments, and everything liberally laced with cream, fill the tables.

    When everyone is stuffed the music gets a little louder. Soon Sharon interrupts the party to tap the microphone and then announce today’s guest. Paula looks ravishing in her sexy black dress. The girls join hands in solidarity. Which won’t last long. And who is that she is glued to? Hmmmm…

    “The Author Roast and Toast welcomes Paula Martin, please pick up your copy of her book and have it signed  before the dancing begins.” Sharon smiles at Lyn and Mary. One just never knows with these three.

    For today’s fantastic prize there is one question. Who would you want on your arm to celebrate this Scottish ball and dance all night?

    His Leading Lady’

    Jess Harper’s predictable life is turned upside down when she discovers that Lora, her twin sister, has disappeared.  It’s just a week before rehearsals are due to start for a new West End musical in which Lora has the lead role.  Jess decides to pose as her sister in order to save Lora's career.  This brings her into close contact with arrogant theatre director Kyle Drummond.  Attraction sparks between them but there’s also evidence that he had been dating Lora.  So is Jess simply a substitute – in real life as well as in the show?  And what will happen when Lora eventually returns? 

    Jess sat down on the couch and wrapped her hands around her mug of coffee as she thought back over everything that Lora had said.  She knew it wasn’t unusual for Lora to have self-doubts before she started a new show.  But once she got involved in rehearsals, she pushed all her uncertainty to one side, and in the end no-one would ever have known that she’d had a moment’s apprehension about anything.  This had to be more than simply Lora’s initial panic but Jess couldn’t even begin to guess what else it could be.

                She looked up at Kyle sat down at the piano.  His slim fingers ranged over a few arpeggios before starting the melody of No-one Understands, one of the songs from the show.

                Despite all her worries, Jess smiled.  “That’s my favourite song.” 

                He glanced round at her.  “Really?  I thought you said it was When You Come Home?

                “That was when I being Lora.  Simon told me it was her favourite, and it’s a really good chorus song that Lady Kate leads.  But No-one Understands encapsulates the whole theme of the show.  Lady Kate’s waiting for Callum to return from the Crusade and, even though everyone is trying to tell her that after all this time he must be dead, she knows his vow that he’ll either return or send his half of the ring to her on his deathbed.  His token of love.”

                Kyle stopped playing.  “You know the legend?”

                “Not in detail, but I’ve read the script.”  

                “It’s an interesting story from Argyll.  Callum is the show’s name for Colin Drummond who was Lord of Loch Awe.”

                “Drummond?  Any relation to you?”

                “Yes, one of my ancestors.”

                Jess had the feeling there was more to it than Kyle was saying but he’d turned back to the piano.  

                “Sing it, Jess.”

                “Me?   But I don’t know it.”

                He handed her a libretto. “Try it.”

                Jess looked at the music then stood up and moved nearer the piano. “Okay, but I’ll make a mess of it.”
                Kyle played the intro and Jess started, tentatively at first.
                No-one understands – how my heart belongs to you –
                No-one understands – that to you I must be true.
                They think that I’m a fool,
                Clinging to the past,
                Hoping beyond hope.
                They just don’t understand that I’m
                Waiting for you.
                Her confidence grew as she continued with the remaining verses and she forgot where she was, even forgot that Kyle was there.  The emotional words and music took over and she sang from her heart. 

                She hit the final high note with a pure, rich tone and held it while Kyle played the concluding few chords.  Then she came back to reality again and gave a small embarrassed shrug.

                Kyle turned from the piano to look at her, his eyes wide with astonishment.  “Wow!  That was excellent, truly excellent.  Well done!”

    Paula Martin

    I write, therefore I am. 
    (Borrowed and adapted from Descartes -'Cogito ergo sum')

    Buy ‘His Leading Lady’ from www.whiskeycreekpress.com


    To win a copy of Paula's book, all you have to do is just leave a comment and your e-mail address.
    Contest ends tomorrow and everyone who comments is elligible.