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, June 30, 2017

Donna Dalton'S 'Magic In Her Eyes' picnic celebration

Lilly, LaVerne, Lyn, Debby and Mary are ready for the annual picnic lunch.

Every man is eyeing the line of hampers on the massive tables set up to accommodate them. The girls have each prepared a basket with
their favorite foods. Fried chicken, cheese, apples, homemade cakes, cookies, and lemonade fill the air and hungry men salivate
while trying to figure out whose basket they want. Children are running and playing with sticks and chasing each other to hit the rock farther than anyone else can.

“What in the heck is that?” Lyn’s eyes pop out as she looks at Mary’s basket. Everyone else
shakes their heads. 

“It’s my picnic basket.” Mary grins and tries to pick up the basket she has been dragging behind her. “That’s not a basket, that’s a portable food wagon.” Debby holds her basket up. “You want to feed him, not kill him.”

She nods the other baskets that Lilly, Laverne, Lyn and she have brought. “Hey, I need all the help I can get. This dress reminds me of Little House on the Prairie. Mary twirls and her dress does a wonderful lift that the others are soon trying to copy.

“Stop!” Lyn hollers. “Let’s get them on the tables before it’s too late.”
As the girls anxiously await the men’s choices, Laverne notices Lieutenant Preston Booth by the table closest to them. They all rush over to him, but he only has eyes for Meredith Talbot. He chooses her basket and they walk away to find a place for their blanket in the shade.

“Wonder what she brewed to get him to stick to her like glue.” Lilly sighs as she eyes the rest of the men at the tables. “Oh heck no!” Mary watches as a hulk of a man picks up her basket. All she can see is the back of his head, long hair, and overalls over a bare chest, he has a hairy back. “I hope he is better from the front.” Lyn laughs, which makes Debby chuckle, which causes Lilly to laugh out loud. But Laverne does not notice as she takes the hand of the young soldier who approaches her. The other girls watch her walk away with a grin on her face as wide as the field they are in. “Figures.” Mary sighs as she waits for the hulk to turn around as he carries her huge hamper on his head.

Welcome to the Roast! Today we honor Wild Rose Press Author Dona Dalton with a wonderful story that has a hint of the paranormal. Congratulations on your new release, Donna. Let’s all wish her the best of sales and fans who love your stories! 

(This introductory skit  was written by Mary Ricksen)

Meredith Talbot has a secret. In fact, she has nine secrets – her own and those of the eight orphans at Seaton House, a home for children. Each of them has a special talent that if exposed would get them labeled as witches. It is her responsibility to protect the children and their secrets and keep them safe from persecution. Marauding Indians force them into a nearby fort where their safety is threatened by fanatical townspeople and a captivating army officer who try to unmask the children's extraordinary abilities.

Lieutenant Preston Booth has one goal – to serve and protect his country. The military is the only life he has ever known. It’s the only life he wants. When a child is abducted and Preston goes after the culprit, Meredith has a vision of what will happen to him.

Does she risk everything by exposing her gift? Or keep her secret and risk losing him forever?

Little Anna squirmed and clutched her kitten against her chest. “Where will we live? Will we be together?” Her tiny voice quivered. “I don’t want to live with anyone else but you.”

“There’s no need to fret,” Meredith soothed. “Lieutenant Booth promised he would find a place where we can all stay together.” He’d best make good on his promise, or he’d deal with her wrath.
“He’s quite handsome,” Nel said. “You should set your cap for him, Miss Talbot.”

Having turned fourteen the month before, Nelda Sawyer was discovering that boys were not just playmates for hide-and-seek. She had developed a shine for the neighbor’s son and devised every excuse to visit the nearby Pryor homestead.

“I am not in the market for a husband.” Meredith plucked a sliver of chaff from Anna’s hair. “You children keep me occupied enough.”

Lily joined the volley. “The lieutenant likes you. His aura turned pink when he handed you into the wagon. Then both your auras melded together and turned purple, as if you were soulmates.”

She had blossomed into pink and red and all manner of hot shades beneath the lieutenant’s touch. But that didn’t mean she should set her cap for him. More fittingly, it should send her running in the other direction.


Donna lives in central Virginia with her husband, two sons, and a grandson. An avid reader of historical romances, Donna uses the rich history of the “Old Dominion” State for many of her story settings. She enjoys reading stories where characters overcome life’s challenges, where family is everything, and the power of love helps them succeed. You can visit her at www.donndalton.net or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/DonnaDaltonbooks

Donna Dalton
....romancing America's past

To win a copy of Donna'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.
(We reserve the right to waive the prize in any week when there are not enough contestants for a draw to be deemed fair and unbiased)

Friday, June 2, 2017

The Paradise Coven

The drive from Columbus, Ohio to Ledge Rock Bistro located on Lake Erie between Sandusky and Cleveland took just over two hours. The limousine is black with tinted windows, and Oliver is dressed in casual attire rather than a chauffeurs uniform. A Glock 9 mm is tucked discretely in the waistband of his Chinos.
When the car pulls into the parking lot, Oliver motions for everyone to stay inside the vehicle while he checks on their reservations.
"Why all the secrecy?" Lilly asks, trying to see out of the windows.

"And the weaponry?" LaVerne adds beneath her breath as she side-eyes their guest, Bentley Wells. "Both Mr. Wells and Oliver are packing."

"We're perfectly safe," Debby says with conviction. Then she raises her brows and looks to Bentley Wells for confirmation. "Aren't we?"

Bentley smiles. "Of course."

"We just have to take precautions," Lyn adds."Detectives Michael McConnell and his partner, Aaron Simmons are investigating the brutal murders of two women in Columbus and can't be seen talking to a bunch of writers."

"How exciting," Mary says, rubbing her hands together. "All this cloak and dagger stuff gives me delicious chills."

LaVerne snorts. "More like the thought of meeting two hot detectives."

"I don't know how hot they are," Bentley says, "But they are two of my favorite characters, and I'd love for you ladies to meet them. And thanks to the Author Roast and Toast, we'll have the entire restaurant to ourselves so Michael and Arron don't have to worry about anyone from Paradise Coven trying to interfere with their on-going investigation."

"What's Paradise Coven?" Debby asks.

Bentley drops his voice, the timber low pitched enough to send another kind of chill down the hostesses arms. "Paradise Coven is a mysterious club with a terrible secret that could have far reaching consequences."

With author, Bentley Wells ominous words still ringing in their ears, the hostesses climb from the car and follow him into the restaurant. Oliver follows close behind, his hand mere inches from his concealed weapon.
As the sun sinks lower over the horizon, the hostesses are treated to an amazing view of Lake Erie from the vantage point of Ledge Rock, the small community in which they find themselves. Then they step into the cozy restaurant.

"Wow!" Lilly hurries over to one of the tables to look out of the window. "You can see the city from here."
"The food smells delicious," Debby adds.

"Those two detectives look kind of delicious too," Mary says with a giggle.

Lyn smiles. "I couldn't agree more."

After Bentley introduces the hostess to Michael McConnell and Aaron Simmons, a server pours wine and water while two others serve pepper steak with baked potatoes and a salad. As the group dine on a delicious meal, the two detectives discuss a serial murder case that is more chilling than anyone expected. 

(This week's introductory 'skit' written by Lilly Gayle)

About the Author:

Bentley Wells is a pseudonym.  The author has written a few short stories and numerous poems for literary magazines, articles for academic journals and conference proceedings, chapters and entries for nonfiction books and encyclopedias, and several academic and reference books.  The Paradise Coven is the author's first mystery.


A Paradise Coven features Columbus, Ohio, homicide detectives Michael McConnell and Aaron Simmons who investigate the brutal murders of two women.  There are no witnesses and few clues, except for unfamiliar words the killer has printed in lipstick on each victim.  When the detectives learn the definitions they wonder if they are dealing with a serial killer or a demon.  As McConnell and Simmons dig for the truth, they discover a decades-old third murder with the same MO.  This victim had ties to a mysterious club--The Paradise Coven.  Is a member of this club responsible for all three murders?  Unfortunately, the terrible secret the detectives unravel may have far-reaching consequences.


     McConnell and Simmons walked toward their respective offices.  They saw Captain Black through his office
Purchase Links: Black Opal Books | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads
window.  He was motioning to them.  McConnell opened the door and followed Simmons inside.

     Captain Black stood.  "Sit down," he ordered.

     McConnell and Simmons glanced at each other, shrugged, and sat down.

     "What's up, Captain?" McConnell asked.

     Captain Black crossed his arms and shook his head.  "Guess who called about an hour ago?"

     "Who?" McConnell asked.

     "The DA."

     "What about?" Simmons asked.

     Captain Black uncrossed his arms, moved to the front of his desk, and sat down on top of it.  "It seems Marks's attorney informed him that Marks saw you two this morning," he replied.  "She said that he saw you two when he left his apartment and again when he arrived at work."

     "That's true," McConnell admitted.  "We followed him."

     "McConnell, leave him alone."


     "McConnell, if you don't leave him alone, his attorney will file a lawsuit against the department."

     "How do you know?" Simmons asked.

     Captain Black sighed.  "She told Hurley."

     "She's bluffing, Captain," McConnell said.

     Captain Black glared at McConnell.  "We can't take that chance, McConnell.  Now, leave Thomas Marks alone.  Do you understand?"

     McConnell lowered his head.  "I understand."

     Black stared at McConnell for a minute.  "Get back to work."

To win a copy of Bentley'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.
(We reserve the right to waive the prize in any week when there are not enough contestants for a draw to be deemed fair and unbiased)