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.

Friday, August 17, 2012

A Beach party to celebrateCrimson Footprints - by Shewanda Pugh

The women converge on the beach gazing with awe at the cerulean blue of the ocean. Colorful cabanas and umbrellas line the sand. The sun is bright overhead, a light breeze flutters the silk of the cabanas and the water is rife with swimmers. It is a beautiful day!

“Oh my,” Lyn adjusts the spaghetti straps of her colorful sundress. “South Beach is such a great place for a party and I love all the tropical decorations!”

“Me too!”  Mary smooths the front of her electric blue muumuu. “Almost like being in Hawaii—maybe. Never been there but I would think it would look like this.”

Clad in bright red crop pants and a white lacy blouse, Mac toys with a giant paper flower. “Actually, the decorations are more Caribbean style. Kind of Jamaican.”
“Nice that there’s a large tent for cover or we’ll be sweltering in this heat by later today.” Patsy fans herself, arms bulging. “Glad I wore this loose skirt and peasant blouse or I’d be dying here. Where I come from, it’s never this humid.”

Mac notes the sweat running down Patsy’s face. “Maybe you need to go swimming. Cool down a little bit.”

“I don’t think so.” Patsy stares at the bikini clad swimmers. “I’m not dumb enough to display my less than perfect body next to these young things.”

Lyn scans the crowded beach. “Where are the animals?”

Mary laughs, hooters giggling. “Shewanda is such a gem! She set up an animal hotel for the creatures while we party. Nibbie and Hampy love it in there, lots of creature snacks, but I’m not sure where Cuddles and Foster snuck off to.”

Mac sighs dramatically. “Foster is such a scamp. I can’t keep track of him for a second.”

Lyn wiggles her huge toes in the sand. “Well, Cuddles pops in now and again usually near the food table. He’ll show up eventually.”

Shewanda strolls from the food tent. “There you are! We’ve been waiting. Just isn’t a party without you.”

“Just smell that air,” Mary waves her arms dramatically. “I love it here!”

“It really is a beautiful spot.” Shewanda motions them to follow. “You all look like you could use a little pick-me-up.” They stop near a drink cart. “Personally, my favorites are watermelon margaritas, champagne punch, Love on the Beach, Sea Breeze or Lillet-Basil cocktails.”

“Wow!” Mac gazes wonderingly. “I’ve never seen so many tropical drinks. I can’t decide which one I want! But how about a Sea Breeze?”

“Well,” Lyn eyes the impressive liquor selection. “I’m having one of those Love on the Beach things. Does it come with an umbrella?”

Shewanda laughs. “I’m sure they can arrange that for you.”

“I’m having a watermelon margarita!” Mary leans on the counter, smacking her lips. “I can taste it now!”

A tall dark haired bartender sets a drink down in front of Lyn. “So glad you made it.” Oliver’s eyes sparkle with humor. 

Shewanda hired him specially for the event.

“Shewanda has good taste,” Lyn gushes. “Could you make me another Love on the Beach?”

Mac sips her drink admiring the scenery. “This is so perfect! I could stay here all day and night.”

Mary downs her drink and slaps the counter for another. “Where’s the food?”

“Follow me.” Shewanda leads the way to a huge tent. Reggae music spills from the interior.

“I love this music.” Patsy sways to the beat. “I was on a cruise once and we sat on deck every night and listened to the band. It was one of my favorite things about the whole trip.”

Shewanda pushes the tent flap aside. Cool air wafts over the women. Tables line the sides of the tent almost bowing beneath the weight of the food trays.

The dessert bar is first in line. Chocolate mousse, tiramisu and six layer chocolate cake. A dieter’s nightmare but then who’s dieting?

“Taste this,” Mac dips her finger into the tiramisu and licks. “This is just so scrumptious!”

Mary’s stomach growls loud enough for all to hear. “Steamed lobster! You’re serving steamed lobster! I’ve died and gone to heaven!” She grabs a plate and starts loading it up.
Patsy heads for another table. “I’m having suishi.” She pops a wedge in her mouth. “I love spicy tuna and salmon! And get a load of this spider roll.” 

“Oooooooo!” Lyn selects an oyster and swallows it. Her nose crinkles. “Slides right down my throat.”

“I don’t know how you can eat oysters rockerfeller,” Mary almost gags. “Just too slimy for me.”

“You just don’t know what’s good.” Lyn swallows another, "and oysters rockerfeller aren't slimy. We love oysters where I come from!”

“Well, there’s certainly enough for everyone.” Shewanda smooths a hand through her hair. “Eat up and then its beach volleyball! Pick your partner!”

“I'll get Patsy,” Mary yells. “With arms like that, she has to be great!”

“Looks like it’s you and me,” Lyn smiles at Mac. “I may be short, but I’m perky.”

“Let’s eat!”



When an insecure, bi-racial woman

begins a cloak-and-dagger love affair with a Japanese American man, she is intent on keeping her bigoted family in the dark—albeit with devastating consequences. On the night of her brother’s murder, Deena Hammond stumbles upon Takumi Tanaka, lost and on the wrong end of a .32. After rescuing him from the certain fate driving through the hood in a Porsche will bring, a sweet kind of friendship begins. A balm for her grief. Maybe, Deena likes to think, it happened the day her white mother killed her black father. Or maybe, it was always a part of them, like DNA gone bad. Whatever the case, Deena knows that her family would never approve, hell, never acknowledge her fast-growing love for Takumi. And had he never made love to her that way, in that unraveling, soul-searching sort of way, she could’ve done the same. But love’s a devil that way. 

So, their game begins. One where they hide what they are from everyone. Anyone. And Tak understands this—for now. After all, Deena’s career hinges on the favor of her mentor and boss, his hard-ass of a father. And the Hammond family is already stretched thin with grief. Yet, each step Deena takes toward family and career brings her closer to an acceptance she’s never had. And away from him.

Bio: Shewanda Pugh is a native of Boston’s inner city. She has a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Alabama A&M University and a Master’s in Writing from Nova Southeastern University. Fueled from a young age, her passion for crossing societal boundaries like race, class and culture, is the inspiration for both her cluttered bookshelf and her writing. When she’s not busy obsessing over fiction, she can be found traveling, nursing her social networking addiction or enjoying the company of loved ones. In 2012, she was shortlisted for the NBBF Best New Author Award and the AAMBC Reader's Choice Award.

To win a copy of Shewanda'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.


  1. Hi Shewanda

    Welcome to your Roast Party. Congratulations on your release - may you have many sales.

  2. Hiya Shewanda,

    Great party. I love the beach. The only thing better is a beach party! I grew up in Boston too, well, just north of Boston. We'll have to grab one of those yummy drinks and wander down to the water to compare notes.

    Congrats on Crimson Footprints. It sounds fascinating.

  3. Good Morning Shewanda - Sister Hostesses. Shewanda, I am so impressed with your background! And I love the premise of your novel. Look forward to visiting with you today. Now I off to load my plate with the lobster! Along with my watermelon cocktail of course!

  4. Great choice, Patsy. I'm having lobster too. *shoots a sidelong glance at Lyn* I wonder if they screamed when they were dropped in the pot. ;-)

  5. Lyn hugs her sister hostesses. Hi Mac, Hi Patsy - where's Mary? Bet she's found a hunk already!

    I'm going to have some tiramasu, no scraming lobsters for me! Poor little things! Oh, don't start me off again, Mac! :)

  6. Well my lobster is already dead - I didn't do the dirty deed so I'm going to enjoy! Yeah, I saw Mary chasing a few minutes ago. She'll come back!

  7. Hmmm, looks like they're setting up for beach volley ball. Lyn, maybe Shewanda will team up with you. You know I hate to sweat. I'll just stay here and guard the desert ta... Oh, look. There's Foster and Cuddles.

    *eyes widen*

    Foster don't! Crap. Did you see that? He turned that seagull into a beach ball.

  8. Well that's all right then Patsy, hate to think of the poor things being boiled alive!

    Yes, with any luck Mary may bring a load of hunks back with her - she usually does.

    Yes, I'm game for volleyball too, Mac - oh know, Cuddles and Foster flying together - watch out Patsy - oops!

  9. Sorry to be late guys. I was getting ready this morning and some guys in white coats grabbed me, brought me to some medical clinic and took my blood! I chased the guy who let me go, but he was really fast and...
    Jeez, what was that about?
    Nibby was chasing that seagull and Foster made it into a ball for her. How thoughtful, just glad it wasn't a person!
    Whose Idea was it to give me a mu mu to wear, I look like granny goodwitch. But, the airflow is keeping me cool. Mary pinches Lyn and runs.

  10. Curses - did they put mead in this tiramasu - I meant oh no, not oh know! LOL

  11. Don't worry I've invited the James Gang and instead of the Duke I went for something a little newer. I've invited Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. I had to travel back a bit to get the young version. But, look at that Sundance Kid. Wooo Hoooo!

  12. A little early with the mead eh Lyn.
    Huh, problems with alcohol? Although it makes you very amusing!

  13. LOL *hic* I've only been drinking orange juice! Trust you Mary sweetie, not content with oggling the Sundance kid, you have to flirt with a sexy camp too! Medical clinic - who d'you think you're kidding. I dunno!

    Actually I like that muumuu on you - anyway it was Patsy's idea, not mine.

    Lyn runs from Patsy as she rises out of the sandcastle,Cuddles and Foster pushed her into,spitting feathers. - heeeelp - Mac, someone, help - it was your idea, Patsy, admit it!

  14. Hmmm. Patsy you've been warned, you might wear a burlap sack next time! Don't run you chicken!!!

  15. I'll have a Love on the Beach please - with an umbrella of course! Could do with some of that tripical sunshine as an antidote to yet more rain here!
    Crimson Footprints sounds intriguing, Shewanda!

  16. Hi Paula, Oliver has your drink and a wink!

  17. Love on the Beach! Oh yeah, right, that's a drink

  18. Never had one, what's it taste like?
    Been at the beach, but no love...
    Well, not in public. Anybody ever skinny dipped?? The girls float you know!

  19. I've never had one either, Mary. What's in it? I like Sex on the Beach. The drink, I mean. I have an aversion to sand in places it doesn't belong. LOL on the floating girls. Nothing like having your own floatation devises.

  20. I admit nothing - I plead the 5th Amendment! Sand in some places, have to agree, but doesn't everyone dream of making love on a beach? Come on, admit it!

  21. Well... er yes... provided it's a private beach of course! :)

  22. U h, I was speaking from experience.

    Hiya Paula!

  23. Hi Paula! Okay Mac, gives us the details :) Wait a minute, I need another drink before you begin. Be right back.

  24. LOL me too! I'm all feet - I mean ears!

  25. I suggest skinny dipping in a Lake, no sand!
    Just minnows!
    You must be a quick swimmer with those fins you got Lyn.
    Patsy uses her arms, I use my hooters, Mac she stays afloat because she forgets she's in the water!

  26. Love you guys, we tried! And a wonderful day to try sex on the beach,(does that require capitols?)

  27. Have a good weekend my friends! I'm off to skinny dip, or chunky dip whichever applies! LOL

  28. Yes, have a great weekend everyone.I'm going to relax and let the fishies nibble my toes!

  29. Big wave to all of the party goers. Sorry for my delayed response. Thought I left something yesterday. I guess I've gotten quite comfortable with blog lurking. Anyhoo, back to the beach party!

  30. And FYI, you guys have been cracking me up.

  31. Hiya Shewanda. Sorry. Nodded off there for a minute. To many adult beverages. The sun is so nice and warm. I hope no one noticed i was drooling in my sleep

  32. We have a good idea why you might have been drooling in your sleep, Mac! LOL

    Glad to see you Shewanda we were afraid you'd been eaten by a shark!

  33. Hello Shewanda! I've been digging up the sand trying to find you!

  34. Hi Shewanda, you missed the best day ever! What a party! And when Patsy says digging, see that new pond over there...

  35. LOL, Patsy just don't know her own strength, do she!

  36. So, when does the fellow up yonder show up again? Ahem. Quite the looker, isn't he?


This is an interractive blog - please feel free to pop in and comment throughout the Roast as much as you like - and remember to leave your email address if you wish to be put in the draw to win this week's prize.