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.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Alison's Winner (with apologies for it being late due to technical difficulties!)

 Joanne Renaud

Congratulations Joanne, we're sure you'll love Alison's book.

Thanks to Alison for being such a fantastic  and sporting guest of honour, and to everyone who commented.

Sharon, Mary, Patsy 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!"  

We're taking a break for a couple of weeks to 'recharge our batteries'.
Please pray for our dear sister Sharon, who is still in ICU.  We miss her terribly but she's slowly making progress, which is updated on her blog whenever we get any news.

Please join us again on 6th April when Kelly Moran will be our guest of Honour at:

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Melissa's winner is...

Paula Martin!

Congratulations Paula, we know you're in for a great read!

Thanks to Melissa for being such a fantastic  and sporting guest of honour, and to everyone who commented.

Sharon, Mary, Patsy 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!"  

We'll be taking a break for a couple of weeks to 'recharge our batteries'.
Please pray for our dear sister Sharon, who is still in ICU.  We miss her and can't wait for her to be well enough to join us again in our Friday madness

Join us again on 6th April when Kelly Moran will be our guest of Honour at:

Friday, March 16, 2012

An underground celebration of Melissa Douthit's latest novel 'The Firelight of Maalda'

The Hostesses of the Author Roast and Toast welcome Melissa Douthit and we are happy to have safely arrived at this grand old castle. “It was rough getting here eh?”

Travelling underground is one of the most difficult ways to have to travel. Mary fluffs her dress and tries to pull her top up to cover her girls. "They never put enough material up here do they?"

 Lyn turns her huge feet sideways to see if she can’t keep them under her dress and out of sight. While Patsy pulls on her too tight sleeves.

“She always looks so good in these fluffy dresses.” Lyn points at Sharon as she strolls in with Oliver on her arm.

“Well look at that.” Mary eyes the tables full of wild game. Nuts, fruits and dates compete with luscious Chocolate cake and pudding. “Big stuffed birds. What are they?”

“Wild perminogen.” Lyn smiles.

“Oh brother.” Patsy rolls her eyes. “There is no such thing. It’s ptermageno.”

“What parmesan? That’s cheese. This thing looks like a peacock and it’s moving. AAAHHH!” Mary screams and points to a stuffed chicken.

 She’s hallucinating Lyn sighs, “Grab her by the arms Patsy. We’re gonna get her a drink. When she finds out about the dragon, she’s gonna freak.”

“Drrraagon!” Mary’s eyes bulge out. Patsy drags Mary over, shoves a glass of something into her hand and Mary slugs it down. Immediately overcome by a coughing fit. Patsy whacks her on the back and she flies into one of the huge bowls of pudding. Licking pudding off herself she smiles when she tastes it.

“Mmmmm. Good! Got that over with. Any whipped cream?” Mary groans. “What was in that drink?”

Lyn grabs her and drags her into a side room and tosses her one of the extra outfits the girls always bring along just in case. “Change and then come back.” Lyn tosses dagger eyes at Mary who sticks her tongue out at Lyn.

Mary reappeares in the clean gown. Suddenly a huge plume of smoke fills the air. Mary runs out of the room with Lyn behind her to see what the noise is.

“The dragon is at the castle gate - run.” Huge wings keep the dark, smooth skinned, and gleaming dragon from getting through the door way and into the main hall. And it’s an also freshly changed Patsy, who pulls out a huge sword and, covered in armor she approaches the struggling, fire breathing, creature.

“We’re gonna need animal power for this one I think. Animal power!” Mary shouts and Hampy pops up in a decorative vase. Nibby appears from a side door. The trumpet of a charging unicorn heralds Cuddles’ arrival! Hampy jumps on Nibby’s back, squeals and as the dragon faces them, runs back to Patsy.

Patsy sticks the huge creature in the behind. The dragon turns its head, with a haughty stare at the crazed female and the three animals  behind her.  Patsy runs, and the other hostesses are about to follow her,  when Melissa slides down the dragon's side from behind its neck, and leaps to the ground.

"Don't worry," she laughs, looking stunning in her electric blue gown,  "this is a Naezzi.  He won't hurt you - not if you don't go pricking him with a sword again, anyway!"

“What a sight.” Lyn laughs. “Well, just another roast. Let’s welcome Melissa again, as she is one of our faves!” Melissa curtsies and proceeds to sign her latest release for her guests.

“Save some wine for Patsy,” Mary grins, “she’s gonna need it."

Excerpt (The Firelight of Maalda, page 234):

The statue began to move.  Radiating a myriad of colors, its outer shell rippled like the surface of a dark pond disturbed by a strong wind.  It was slow at first and then faster and faster until the statue was no longer a statue but a living, fire-breathing creature that rose slowly from the ground and towered over her menacingly.  Its fiery eyes threatened her and it’s breath created a fierce, blistering gale as flames shot from its snout.  It stood almost as high as the outer wall of the fortress and gleamed in its own firelight, it’s dark, smooth, obsidian skin reflecting a pale cast over everything near it. 

 It had a long neck and body with strong, bulging legs and arms ending in black, razor-sharp claws that could cut through anything.  Sharply pointed horns protruded from its forehead, snout, and tail as well as decorating the ridge line of its back.  It had two sets of wings that stretched so far out that its wingspan blocked much of the night sky above her.  Opening its mouth in a savage snarl, it positioned itself to strike.

Melissa Douthit grew up in North County of San Diego, California. After graduating with a Computer Science degree in Southern California, and working for a summer at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in New Mexico, she moved to the Bay Area to work at NASA Ames Research Center for a year and then at Lawrence Livermore National Lab for another four years. From there, she moved to Monterey, California, to work at the Naval Postgraduate School on a government project for two years. She currently lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, working with the Army Corps of Engineers on another government project. Since high school, she has been a voracious reader of books of all genres, with an emphasis in fantasy and science fiction. Her literary work is strongly influenced by her professional experience and includes many elements of her scientific background. 


 Book One and the Prequels are FREE on Smashwords and Amazon:



To win a copy of Melissa '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 eligible.

Friday, March 9, 2012



Mary, Lyn, Sharon and Patsy descend down the dark circular staircase to the floor of the concert hall. Brenda waits for them at the bottom of the steps. They stare in amazed wonder.

Bleachers line the walls groaning beneath the weight of thousands of leather clad celebrants. Row upon row of folding chairs cover the hard cement floor and even standing room leaves little opportunity for maneuvering through the dense crowd. Rock music blares from the monstrous speakers situated throughout the spacious room. Even the floor vibrates from the discordant pounding of the band.
“I can’t hear myself think over the noise.” Mary claps her hands over her ears.

“It is so hot in here!” Lyn tugs at her leather pants. “Feels like it’s a hundred degrees or more. And these boots are killing my feet!”

Sharon smoothes the tight skirt over her plump buns. “Good thing we left Nibbie, Cuddles and Hampy in the car. They’d freak out for sure!”

Mary’s leather bustier snaps a lace. “ACK. I’m falling out.”

“Look at all the head-bangers!” Patsy gazes at the bobbing mass dancing frenziedly to the thunderous din. “I feel sort of out of place.”

“We do seem to be the oldest people here.” Sharon’s face pinks above her leather vest. “Most of the people don’t appear much over 30, if even that.”

Brenda adjusts her leather skirt.

“Don’t worry about it! No one pays any attention to anyone. Everyone’s focused on the stage.”

Atop a high platform, a heavy metal band rocks the house. The lead singer’s head looks like a rooster with a multi-colored Mohawk. Lavish facial piercings and metal studs adorn his heavily made-up face and ears. The other musicians seem to have suffered the same misguided fate, with the addition of a multitude of colorful tattoos on every limb. All in all, they’re an extremely strange and boisterous bunch.

Oliver, muscular body clad in leather pants, leather vest and arm bands, steps onstage, a microphone to his lips.

“Ladies and Gentlemen! Welcome to the Party! Is everyone having a good time?”

The crowd roars its approval. He motions for quiet. His fingers form a V. “Rock on!”

Earsplitting heavy metal blasts from the speakers as the band kicks in again. The mob goes wild!

“I’m going deaf for sure!” Mary screeches over the noise.

“You and me both,” Patsy screams.

“Oliver certainly looks handsome tonight.” Sharon sighs, gazing at the stage. “He has the perfect body for leather.”

“At least one of us does,” Lyn grumps. “I had to put pantyhose on under these things to squeeze ‘em on.”

A punk rocker grabs Brenda around the waist and starts dancing to the wild music.

“Ohmygawd!” Patsy stares visibly impressed. “They’re dirty-dancing. I think that’s what it’s called.”

Mary’s mouth pops open. “Somebody needs a room!”

“I need a stiff drink,” Lyn grumbles. “Where’s the bar.”

“Oliver said Food is in the side room Champagne on the house!” Sharon leads the way.

Brenda struggles mightily and extricates herself from the determined dance partner. “Run!” she pants.  “Hide!”

They scurry into the food court. The clamorous music fades to a slight degree.

“Now this is more like it!” Patsy pops a chocolate covered strawberry in her mouth.

“Caviar! Oh Yum!” Lyn dips a cracker in the black mass. “This is the best.”

    Brenda samples the chocolate raspberry tart. “Wait until you’ve tried this!”
She smacks her lips. “My hips won’t like this in the morning, but then who cares!”

    Mary dives into the coconut chocolate pie. “Never too much chocolate.”

Sharon reaches for a bowl of pomegranate sorbet. “Someone spent a lot of money on this spread.”
Brenda waves her spoon towards the ceiling. “The band has a penthouse on the 80th floor.  Takes a lot of cash to live up here. I hear they take women up there all the time.”
They all gaze at the ceiling.
“Not much chance we’ll be invited,” Mary mumbles around her bite of pie.
“Well,” Brenda laughs. “You never know. After all, my dance partner was only 22. We could be the requisite cougars!”
“We could,” Lyn chuckles. “Still a lot of mileage left in this body.”

  Oliver strides up, a bottle of champagne in his hand. He pops the cork and pours.

Let the party begin!


Rachael suspects her date, Jason, is a drug dealer, and she’s torn between her attraction for this hot bad boy and running for safety. But a famous rock star vying for her attention and spiked champagne pose far more trouble. On a blind date she’ll never forget, Rachael learns first impressions can lead her down a dangerous path and straight into the arms of love.

Could this room get any thicker with sweaty, grinding bodies?
The bass blasting out of the speakers on stage reverberated in Rachael’s chest. This had to be unhealthy for her body’s natural electrical impulses.

The rapacious drumming coming from the guy standing at the table next to her grew louder by the minute. Did he think he’d come to a concert or a drum competition? He threw his whole body into his efforts, and she could barely avoid rubbing hips with the man while trying to not bump into her date on her other side.

Rubbing hips with her date would be perfectly fine. Thigh to thigh would be better considering his legs. But they barely knew each other’s names and at this point, good legs or not, his choice of venue and his image still had her wary. Rachael planted her feet firmly, but one particularly hard shove from behind, by a guy trying to dance his way to the bar, sent her sideways into her date giving him full knowledge of her breast size and resulted in a flirtatious smile.

Jason leaned in close, his mouth dampening her earlobe with his words. “I hope you like crowds. Truthfully, I wasn’t prepared for this.”

She could barely hear him above the noise. Practically shouting, she asked, “No? What were you expecting?”

“Something a bit more intimate.”

His emphasis on intimate sent goose bumps between her thighs. Rachael raised one foot and then the other; her high heels cramped her feet. She glanced sideways at the tattoos on her date’s forearms. Her scan included his biceps. He had nice arms, but what did all those strange symbols mean? There were so many of them. She could hear Shelly—Loosen up girl. Stuffy Mark had you in a five-year rut. How true. She used to know how to have fun. Her gaze drifted around the room and back to Jason. But the world changed while she was holed up with stay-at-home Mark.

Jason shifted his arm on the table, muscles and tattoos flexing. Her heart thumped. Had she accepted a date with a bad boy? Could this be her sister’s attempt at pumping up the volume on her otherwise boring life?
His mouth grazed her ear again. “I’m glad you’re with me. Makes the crowd bearable.” He pulled away and smiled, one of those mouth and eye smiles that smacks of sincerity.

Her heart thumped again, obviously telling her something her head couldn’t.

Another bump and this time their contact lasted, Jason’s leg brushing between her thighs. Definitely nice firm thighs. Did he do that on purpose? She didn’t move away. Why was her mind telling her one thing and her body another?

All the way to the theater he couldn’t quit raving over their good fortune—invitation only, small venue, pre-concert show available because of his business contacts. His rant sounded nervous, but he smelled so sensual in his Halston Cologne and smiled so charmingly. And he could talk intelligently about Lautrec. He’d said more than once that he’d been happy she’d agreed to a blind date.

Muscular thighs and Halston—apparently her sister knew what tempted her.

At the break, the decibels dropped to the tolerable roar of the black vinyl crowd. He ran his hand along her spine from her neck to her waist. “Would you like a beer?” Her ink-stained escort screamed louder than necessary in her ear then looked regretful at his faux pas.

She nodded her head, the tingle of his fingertips leaving her speechless so she forgave the eardrum assault. The crowd noise made talking difficult anyway, she reasoned.
His mouth stayed by her ear, his breath tickled her lobe and his fingertips slipped off the edge of her dress and onto the bare skin between her shoulder blades. She caught her breath at the subtly worded, “One more set.” With that he pushed through the crowd

She glanced toward the bar, caught a glimpse of that gorgeous profile. After the show, she could decide whether to beg off for the rest of the evening or not

Bio and links:
Convinced she was born to be an artist, Brenda never took her love of writing seriously. And then one day, sometime after college, after marrying a man doing a stint in the army and the birth of her son, she found more satisfaction filling a blank page with words than an empty canvas with color. She left her paints behind. After publishing several short stories, she turned to writing novels. Regardless of the length of her story, the characters drive her forward, taking her on their journey of discovery and love.

Brenda and her husband are gypsies at heart having lived in six states and two countries. Recently, they moved to prairie country in Arizona and are enjoying the wide-open spaces while tending fruit trees and veggie gardens. They share their home with their dog, Rusty. When Brenda isn’t at her laptop writing, she enjoys hiking, motorcycle riding and the company of good friends.

Visit Brenda at www.brendawhiteside.com.
She blogs on the 9th and 24th of every month at http://rosesofprose.blogspot.com
She blogs about prairie life on her personal blog http://brendawhiteside.blogspot.com/

Tattoos, Leather and Studs ISBN: 978-1-61235-258-9

Brenda Whiteside

Sleeping with the Lights On
Tattoos, Leather and Studs 
An Elfin Secret and On the Way to the Snow Ball (anthology) 
Honey on White Bread 
The Morning After coming in 2012

To win a copy of Brenda'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 eligible.