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, May 10, 2013

Karen Michelle Nutt - at Maneros

The hosts of the Author Roast and Toast arrive at the fantastic Italian restaurant, Maneros.

Volare, by Dean Martin, has several old time Italian men singing along to the music. They smile through white mustaches and pat little children on the head, as they dance by.  One young girl sits on her grandfather’s lap while he sings the words in Italian to her. She giggles and squeals with delight. Today the restaurant is closed to the public for a celebration to honor, Karen Michelle Nutt, and her new release, Soul Taker. Laughter and animated conversation surround the room, as relatives and friends greet one another with bear hugs and kisses on each cheek. 

The restaurant is filled with colorful paintings, and apples, pears, oranges, figs and several types of nuts, designated for desert make, for edible, mood making, centerpieces.

“Look.” Lyn eyes the friendly smiling faces of those who fill the eatery. “I never woulda thought there were Italians with red hair.”

“Mama Mia,” Mary exclaims. “I’ve always wanted to say that.”

“That’s nice.” Lyn, puzzled,  asks. “Mamma Mia, made the Italians have red hair?”

“Who’s Mamma Mia?” Mac wonders, as she eyes the place.

“The red heads are probably Irish. I have Italian relatives and lots of them married Irish people. My mom was Irish and my father was Italian.”  Mary tells them. “She decided to marry him ‘cause he was a terrific cook and she never had real tomato sauce until they met. She used to put tomato soup on spaghetti. What Italian couldn’t help but to be attracted to someone who couldn’t make Italian gravy as good as he could. Italians always fight over who is the best cook and you’re not talking corned beef and cabbage, which Italian’s don’t make. He saved her from a life of Campbell’s soup and spaghetti. To an Italian, the only thing worse than that would be Ketchup and butter.”

Mac looks at Mary confused. “What does that have to do with red hair?” She wonders

“Never mind Mac. Is that our Oliver?” Patsy points across the room..

“Yes it is. Look, Oliver is dressed like a gondolier.” Lyn chuckles as they make their way to the food tables

“I never saw so much food in my entire life!” Lyn gestures to the huge buffet that fills the room’s center. Piles of pasta with red sauce surround large meatballs, sausages, beef and pork braciole, and hunks of tender sauce coated pork, cover one corner. Spaghetti with clam sauce, Alfredo sauce, anchovy sauce, and several other different sauces wait to be devoured. Baked clams, baked ziti, chicken cacciatore, veal parmesan, mussels and other seafood in garlic butter sauce tantalize ones taste buds. 

Cappuccino, latte, espresso, rich red wines, Limoncello, Amaretto, and Grappa, sit amongst other ethnic drinks, waiting to be tasted. A huge roast beef waits to be sliced, and
vegetables entice in serving dishes. 

 A bloody red raw steak sits in a special place.

 “Why is there a raw steak on the table?” Mac wonders.

“For the vampires, obviously. That and a bottle of O positive blood to spike the wine with.” Lyn tells them. “But, that is between us, not everyone knows that one of Michelle’s characters is a vampire. Heck, there are even werewolves here.”

“Werewolves, vampires, I thought this was just a gathering of Italian relatives.” Mac gazes frantically around the room. “Are they going to try to bite me?”

“Of course not, dearie.” Lyn pats Mac on the back. “That’s why I ordered the blood chaser.”

“This is beginning to sound like one of my family get togethers. If there isn’t somebody bleeding from a fight…” Mary sighs. “Well, no worries, looks like you have all the bases covered Lyn.”

“Bases, vampires, werewolves. AHHHH!” Mac runs screaming from the room.

“Could you go and get her Patsy.” Lyn asks.

“Why is it always me?” Patsy sighs, her mouth a grim line, she stamps her foot.

“Cause you are the only one who can carry her back.” Mary laughs.

“Only if I get to announce this week!” Patsy is determined. And smiles as Mary and Lyn agree with a nod.

In her outdoor voice Patsy hollers. “Welcome everyone to Karen Michelle Nutt’s roast. Let’s make it fun! And don’t forget to pick up your copy of her latest book.” Proudly Patsy smiles at the applause and bows as she turns to retrieve a frightened Mac, who happens to be running down the street screaming.

“Just another roast and toast, eh sister.” Lyn grins and slaps Mary’s hand as she tries to take a taste of  lemon, cheesecake. “Vegetables and dinner first, then desert.”

“Vampires don’t eat cheesecake do they?” Mary asks, while Lyn shakes
her head and greets Karen and her characters…  


No soul is safe…
Purchase HERE
A vampire from the Grim Sith sept is sucking the souls out of young women from the Boston area, but this sinister crime is far worse than a vampire seeking substance. He’s selling the souls to the highest bidder and it seems business is booming.

A vampire, a werewolf, and a Necromancer are a most unlikely team, but Garran, Harrison, and Isabella plan on putting a kink in the dubbed Soul Taker’s plans. It’s personal now. One of their friends has fallen victim to the Soul Taker’s charms, but to stop him from hurting anyone else, their efforts may involve raising the dead.

Excerpt: Garran and Isabella are in the morgue, attempting to raise the latest Soul Taker's victim and find out how to find the fiend. 

Isabella stood next to the table, staring at the body of Missy Spangler. Sadness etched her features, and she made no move to do… whatever she did to summon. He decided to move this along before Dr. Wilson or anyone else discovered them. "Miss Lucci, must I remind ye that time is of the essence?"
She threw him a disgruntled look, but it propelled her into motion.
They had stopped by Isabella's place on the way here so she could pick up what she needed to conjure a soul. She pulled out a diagram with symbols, a black mirror, and an out of date mobile, a flip-phone no less.

Curious, he stepped closer.

She placed the diagram and the mirror on the woman's chest. She placed the open phone on the table to reveal the screen. She then pulled out a dagger jeweled with an amethyst hilt. She pricked her finger and blood welled at the tip.

Her scent had already played havoc with his senses, and now the aroma of her blood, fresh and dripping onto the diagram for him to see—it took all he could do to rein in the urge to sample her. His fangs elongated and a deep growl escaped his lips.

Isabella looked at him, her brows drawing together sharply.

"Go on. Do no' mind me."arched for a link to her spirit beyond the veil.

Her gaze shifted to his mouth and he knew she stared at his fangs.
"Ye're safe from me. It's… the blood." He nodded toward her finger. "I'm in control."
She looked as if she didn't believe him. Smart lass. A Grim Sith's word was only as good as his control, and that could change in a flash.

"I'm going to channel," she told him. "Please, don't talk or you might break the link to the other side."
He gave her a curt nod.

She chanted words and it took him a moment to realize the words were spoken in Latin, a prayer of protection he supposed, until she switched back to English, asking for Missy Spangler. She se

The temperature in the room dropped dramatically. The air around Isabella charged with electricity, making her dark hair stand on end as if tiny fingers held up each strand.

She repeated the words over and over again like a Gregorian chant. "Missy Spangler, a word with you, please. Missy Spangler, a word with you, please." Again and again she repeated the singsong phrase.
Just when he thought it wasn't going to work, the lights in the room flickered and the cell phone rang.


Karen Michelle Nutt resides in California with her husband, three fascinating children, and houseful of demanding pets. Jack, her Chorkie, is her writing buddy and sits long hours with her at the computer.
When she’s not time-traveling, or fighting monsters, she creates book covers. You can find her cover art at: Gillian’s Book Covers: Judge Your Book By Its Cover.

Whether your reading fancy is paranormal, historical or time travel, all her stories capture the rich array of emotions that accompany the most fabulous human phenomena—falling in love.

Visit the author at: http://www.kmnbooks.com
Stop by her blog for Monday interviews, chats and contests at:
Gillian's Book Covers  "Judge Your Book By Its Cover": 

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


  1. Good Morning, Everyone!!

    I'm thrilled to be here today! Thanks gals for having me. Wow, Oliver was busy. Lots of food and drinks. I'll take a latte, please.

    Garran is pleased about the O positive blood and raw steak. Harrison doesn't know what to eat first, and Isabella wants to exchange a few recipes with Oliver so she can add it to the menu at "A Taste of Home", the restaurant she and her brother run.

    Such fun! I'll be by through the day to mingle.


  2. Karen,

    Nice blog! Very creative--it's also making me hungry.

  3. Morning Karen! Welcome. Love the blurb and don't we look lovely today. I look so thin and svelte.

    Good to see you here *cyber wave*

  4. Morning Karen and welcome to your roast. Spooky yet enticing blurb.

    Hiya Jacqueline, dig in, there's plenty. And be sure to have Oliver bring you a drink. He's incredible with a martini shaker.

    Hey Patsy, thanks for catching me. Do you know how hard it is to run in heels? At least I look good, but whose idea was it to put me in red with vampires around?

  5. Hi Karen welcome to the roast, poor Oliver you and Isabelle both look so gorgeous he's completely smitten.

    Hi Jacqueline, as Mac says, 'dig in'.
    Oh Mac, never thought about the red, and vampires. Don't worry though, I doubt if they react to the colour, we're all here for fun, so I'm sure you're quite safe. *Waves* to Patsy, hi Patsy, yes, you do look svelt, must have been all that running after Mac, LOL!

  6. Jacqueline Seewald,

    Thanks for joining us today. The food is yummy! Help yourself!

  7. Patsy,
    Waving back!
    You look fabulous!!

  8. Mac,

    You look lovely in red! Garran will be a perfect gentleman. So don't worry. Besides Isabella would have his head, and Garran knows she could do it. He is the one who trained her to use weapons. lol

  9. Hywela,

    Isabella is a little smitten, too. :)

  10. Mary,
    I'm half Italian and half Irish, too. I'm sure my father appreciated all my mother's Italian dishes!! lol We have quite a few red heads on my father's side. One of my daughters has beautiful auburn hair when she's not incline to color it. lol

    Isabella is Italian.
    Garran is from a Scottish vampire sept.
    Harrison is from the Irish werewolf clan the Mac Tire.

  11. Karen, The Mac Tire? I have my own Irish werewolf clan? Friggin' awesome. But if it's okay with you, I think I'll stick close to Isabella, and I need a drink. Oh, Oliver? BLOODY Mary, please. he he he

  12. Mac,

    You do realize Garran will be sticking close to Isabella. lol

  13. Try to pace yourselves, if you eat too much you will just get sick. And these Italian parties are all about food! Mangia! My maiden name was Mongiello, LOL, so you can imagine what my family did a lot of. What I feel bad about is that we all live so far away we never have those family parties!
    My great grandfather was a little Paison who didn't speak a word of English. He had no teeth he was scary!

  14. Hi Karen and everyone. That is a great book cover. Loved the excerpt.Think I am going to stay away from that steak and wine. LOL. That is a lot of food.
    Sue B

  15. LOL Karen. Yeah, but Isabelle will take care of me. :-)

  16. Hiya Sue! *waves*

    LOL Mary. The Serge and I worked for an Italian catering family when we first married. The parents spoke broken English, which made for some delightful translation mishaps along with the fabulous food. The father was a sweetheart around the girls but could be scary when things went wrong, though he did have his teeth.

  17. We still gather at my mother's house for the holidays. My mother (Italian) likes to be in control of the meals. lol

    Food was a big deal in our family. Visitors would be given a plate of food no matter if they were hungry or not. lol She even invited the mailman in for a snack. lol

  18. Hi Sue!

    So glad you could join us. You have to at least have dessert. :)

    I'm so glad you like the cover and the excerpt. :)

  19. I remember relatives being very upset because one of my sisters as a kid would not eat meatballs and tomato sauce, she would only have butter on her spaghetti. They actually were mad at her. She eats them now and we fight over who makes the best sauce. I think I got them all beat. A little Italian sweet sausage in the meatballs makes for an added taste thrill. Try it!!
    Trouble is by the time it's done I've eaten too many to eat dinner!

  20. I love italian sausage! My mother makes the best meatballs. I like lots of basil in mine.

    One of my daughters won't even touch pasta. Hmm... she is the auburn haired one. She must have gotten all the Irish genes.

    Though my fahter could eat like an Italian. lol He passed away almost 7yrs ago. Sure do miss him.

    He was the greeter for the parties, while my mother was in the kitchen. He was the one to walk all the guests to their car when it was time to leave, too.

  21. Hi Sue *waves* and Mary - hugs sister hostess. I don't think I have any Italian ancestry. I do have a funny story about an Italian restaurant in Wales though. My sister had arranged a birthday party for one of those 'milestone' birthdays and booked us into her favourite Italian restaurant. We were only half way through the meal when a fire engine turned up outside (we could see it through the windows) and all the staff suddenly disappeared. A few minutes later the firemen came in and said not to panic, it was just an electrical fault. My sister, who likes things to run like clockwork, was not at all amused, especially as she'd arranged for the cake to be brought to the table with flaming candles, and before they beat a hurried retreat, the waiting staff just plonked the cake, minus candles on the table, still in the box! I thought it was hysterical, and am eternally grateful that they hadn't been lit and the fire engine arrived after, orI'd never have lived it down (although there weren't THAT many, honest!)

  22. I got a few extra Nationalities in there. Although the holidays were always full of the typical Italian foods and the best ricotta cheesecake ever, we celebrated other holidays. My mom was a ginger Irish, with bright red hair and her only contribution was on St. Patrick's day, corned beef and cabbage. But!!!
    My Polish grandmother who married my Italian grandfather, made wonderful, gwumpkies, amazing cheese Babka, and all the usual fare was there for Easter. Breakfast was cold kielbasa and hard boiled eggs with the babka. I have to say that we didn't have many traditional Irish dishes, and her Shepherds pie had hamburger in it. My father did most of the cooking cause my mothers only good dish was apple pie. Needless to say I fought weight gain my whole life!!!LOL

  23. Lyn, how many were there? Maybe someone called it in cause they were afraid of what would happen when they lit them all? HEHE

  24. Want me to hold your drink for you while you...answer Mary's question, Lyn?

  25. Huh! You two are incorrigible! I don't tell anyone my real age except my doctor and my Bank Manger! (Havn't done so since I was 25, er - a few years ago!

  26. I love Italian food - pasta, the sauces, you name it. Hmmmm, isn't it lunch time right now? Oh Oliverrrrrrr! Serve me!

  27. That says it all eh Mac? If I wasn't just over 27 myself, I'd probably push the isrsue. But...well age approacheth no matter how I try to ignore it. My this dress makes my boobs look huge! I can barely walk this week. And after all that food, I'm thinking I'll list to port.

  28. I'm ready for lunch. Pasta and salad, please Oliver. :)

  29. Hywela,

    Your cake story-- too funny!!

  30. Karen, I think I'll join you for some food - although it's supper time over here. Glad you liked the story about the cake and the candles, My sister, bless her, took it so seriously but I was in stitches!

  31. I'm glad you aren't too old to remember those stories Lyn, I needed a chuckle!
    How about an excerpt Michelle?? Keep them excited, as well as full!!
    Lyn, you have sauce all over your face. Don't you dare throw that meatball at me!!!

  32. Quick somebody save Foster, he fell into a bowl of pasta!! Does he have any magic powers???

  33. He'll be fine, Mary. He has plenty of powers that would get him out of there in a snap, he's just looking for attention.

  34. Oh no a fire truck while you were eating. Wow don't think I could eat after that. LOL. The closest I have gotten to Italian food is the Olive Garden restaurant. LOL. They sure have good food. I can make spagetti at home but; not the same. LOL.
    Sue B

  35. Love Italian food and love the premises of all Karen's books!

  36. Hi Lilly,

    So happy to see you at Karen's party, and I agree, her books sound fantastic!

  37. I think I may have over indulged I'm getting sleepy so I'm going to hit the hay.

    The party, as always will carry on over the weekend, all latecomers welcome!

  38. Ooh just seen your comment, Sue. Actually we didn't have any option. All the staff had left us high and dry (after hastily presenting us with the bill (check to my US friends, so we paid up and left and had to finish the party at another restaurant. As it turned out there wasn't much of a fire, but the fire brigade came out as a precaution. I'm glad to say the restaurant has since changed hands.

    Good job the Roast parties are better organised. We never have any emergencies or unplanned events!

    *Lyn walks off whistling and crossing her fingers behind her back*

  39. Glad you survived Lyn! And got to eat cake too!
    Have a wonderful evening, I just picked up a waiter. Oliver introduced me. PS: He knows all of them!

  40. OMG! They left you with the bill and ran out! I shouldn't laugh but; OMG! Karen I wish I could think of question but; my brain is tired too. LOL. So glad to see you here.
    Sue B

  41. Sue,

    I'm with you. My brain is through thinking for the day. I just want to veg. lol

  42. LOL Sue, it gets better! They then had the nerve to telephone my sister a few days later and say they'd undercharged us, and demanded extra payment. She was not amused and told them exactly what they could do with their demands! I did laugh when I'd cooled down - thankfully the proprietors were neither Italian nor Welsh!

  43. Ok now I am rolling on the floor! That would make a great book. I am so glad they do not own it anymore. I am watching Kitchen Nightmares and they have 2 winners on there. LOL.
    Sue B

  44. ...and we live to party another day!

    Good morning everyone. It's gone very quiet in the coffee shop - I hope everone is enjoying reading Karen's amazing new story with their morning coffee!

  45. Thank you, Oliver and Gals for having me here! It was a blast!

    Thanks to all those who popped in for a visit, too!

    Now for the winner of an Ebook copy of Soul Taker... Sue B.!

    Take care all!

  46. Thank you for being such a lovely guest, Karen, we've really loved having you and wish you continued success and many, many sales with Soul Taker.

    Congratulations Sue!

  47. Yes Karen really enjoyed having you here. And thank you so much. So happy to win.
    Sue B

  48. LOL Great roast and toast as usual ladies! The book sounds exciting, Karen. Sorry I'm too late.

  49. Hi Calissa, thanks for stopping by. Lovely to see you here!