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Monday, March 14, 2016

March 14th 2016 - Meet the Author

Hi, it’s Christina –

Sorry, had to sneak in a
picture of my baby girl
on Prom night.
So, is anyone else a little bleary-eyed this morning, or is it just me? I’m telling you, as I get older, I don’t adjust to the time change as quickly as I used to. When I was younger – boop – the next day, I was good to go. Now… not so much.

I don’t know what the weather’s been like by you, but here in Central Jersey, Mother Nature has smiled upon us for the past several days. We’ve had 60s, 70s and even days in the 80s, which is unheard of in March, BUT I’M NOT COMPLAINING! All in all, this winter wasn’t all that bad – a few bitter days, a few snowy days, and one blizzard. Even still, I’m ready for spring. Friday, the day of my youngest daughter’s prom, the daffodils in my yard bloomed – that’s, at minimum, three weeks early.

Okay, enough rambling. You don’t want to hear about the weather, you want your Monday Morning Meet the Authors. Again this week it’s going to be a Meet the Author, not authors; and I will confess, I’m being a little self-indulgent with this one because I want to feature one of my top ten favorite authors of all time. (Ooo, ouch, yikes, I could picture the eye rolls and almost hear you say, “When isn’t a blog ‘self-indulgent’?”, but please continue reading, because this author is truly wonderful.)
Carla Neggers

I would like to introduce you to Carla Neggers. Originally from Massachusetts, and now living with her family in Vermont (a little over an hour south of Lys), Carla began writing at an early age. Her favorite place to write… high up in a tree. Sound like someone else you know? Where my tree was a Japanese Cherry, Carla’s was a sugar maple.

Since that time, Carla had penned over 70 books, of which I’ve probably read 80%. Most of the ones I missed were the ones she wrote for Harlequin, but now that you no longer need to have a subscription to Harlequin to get their books, and you can actually chose which authors you want to purchase not just settle for whomever they send you, I’ll be able to fill in my collection. YEAH!

Yikes, there I go rambling again. Please chock it up to time-change brain. It’s far past time you get to hear about Carla’s books. I’m trying to remember which series, either Carriage House or Cold Ridge, which got me hooked on Carla’s writing so I can recommend where to start, but I guess it doesn’t matter, and it’s all going to hinge on what you like to read. I’ll try to give you a short summation of what each series is about, and a list of the books, in order, so you know where to begin. Even though she has several series as well as stand-alone novels, I think this time, I’m going to focus on these two instead of giving you my usual little taste of everything approach. This way you’ll get to see how Carla has woven the stories together – an amazing talent, one I hope I emulate in my own series.

Let’s start with the Carriage House Series – Murders, mysteries, Rangers & G-men, all centered around picturesque New England cottages.

The Carriage House
THE CARRIAGE HOUSE (#1) - Fun and a little hard work. That's all Tess Haviland had in mind when Ike Grantham paid her for her graphic design work with the run-down, nineteenth-century carriage house on Boston's North Shore.

Then Ike disappeared, and now Tess finds herself with much more than a simple weekend project to get her out of the city. It's not just the rumors that the carriage house is haunted—it's the neighbors: six-year-old Dolly Thorne, her reclusive babysitter, Harley Beckett…and especially Dolly's father, Andrew Thorne, who has his own ideas about why Tess has turned up next door.

But when Tess discovers a human skeleton in her dirt cellar, she begins to ask questions about the history of the carriage house, the untimely death of Andrew's wife…and Ike's disappearance. Questions a desperate killer wants to silence before the truth reveals that someone got away with murder.

The Cabin
THE CABIN (#2) - Greed and vengeance disrupt the quiet stillness of the Adirondack mountains.

Texas Ranger Jack Galway knows his wife Susanna loves him, so when their marriage hits a rough patch, he supports her decision to take their two teenaged daughters to Boston for a break. But when a few weeks turns into several months, Jack heads to Boston to get his family back.

Packing up the girls and her grandmother, Susanna heads to her cabin in the Adirondacks, trying to escape her fears, her secrets and even the man she loves. Little does she know she's being followed, not just by her husband but by a murderer….

Ex-convict Alice Parker left a mess back in Texas, and she'll never forgive Jack Galway for killing her dream of becoming a Texas Ranger herself. Obsessed with revenge, she's got her sights set on Jack's family.

Trapped in the mountains, Jack and Susanna must find strength in each other if they hope to keep their family together and escape the cabin alive.

Stonebrook Cottage
STONEBROOK COTTAGE (#3) - When everyone is keeping secrets, it's impossible to know who to trust

To put her life back in perspective, Kara Galway has moved home to Texas after years in New England. The up-and-coming defense attorney intends to concentrate on her career and spend time with her Texas Ranger brother. But fate has something else in store.

While Kara is devastated to learn her former mentor, Connecticut governor Mike Parisi, has died suddenly, she's pleased for her best friend, Allyson Stockwell, the new governor. Then Allyson's children show up at Kara's Texas home. They are terrified—and hiding something. Afraid for themselves and their mother, they are certain the circumstances of Mike's death are suspicious.

Kara must return with the children to Allyson's home, Stonebrook Cottage, to unravel what exactly is going on. Are the children really in danger? What secret is Allyson hiding? And then there's Sam Temple, the Texas Ranger Kara has fallen head over heels in love with. Sam has followed her to Connecticut and has no intention of leaving without her. Kara must uncover the truth if she is going to protect the people she loves.

The Harbor
THE HARBOR (#4) - A killer strikes—then disappears without a trace. 

Shattered by her father's murder, Zoe West left Goose Harbor, Maine. Still struggling, Zoe realizes only one thing will help to repair the damage—returning home to confront the past.

FBI special agent J. B. McGrath is burned-out after working undercover for a year. Forced to take a break, he chooses Goose Harbor as a retreat. But he isn't lying low. He believes a killer is still loose in the town—a killer who isn't happy to see Zoe West return.

Zoe isn't sure she can trust the unpredictable FBI agent—or their growing attraction to each other. But the danger mounts, and one wrong move could destroy everything she and J.B. care about. Someone got away with murder and is determined to keep it that way.

Next up is the Cold Ridge Series – it’s time for you to fall in love with some amazing US Marshals. 

Shelter Island
SHELTER ISLAND (Novella - Cold Ridge prequel) – Boston doctor Antonia Winter has a feeling that someone is stalking her. Thinking someone sees her as a means of derailing the senatorial hopes of her boyfriend, Hank Callahan, Antonia leaves Boston for the secluded wilderness of Shelter Island.
Cold Ridge

COLD RIDGE (#1)Award-winning photographer Carine Winter does whatever it takes to get the perfect shot. So she accepts the job of photographing Sterling Rancourt's historic Boston home knowing she's taking a risk—she could run into Tyler North, the pararescuer who all but left her at the altar a year ago. Then Carine finds a body in Rancourt's house—and the prime suspect in the murder is Tyler North's best friend.

When Tyler hears about the murder, he rushes to see his friend Manny, expecting him to ask for help. Instead, Manny urges Tyler to protect Carine, to take her back to Cold Ridge and away from the temptation to meddle in a murder investigation.

What Tyler learns is that Carine's at the center of a deadly game. And the only person she can trust is the person she vowed never to trust again: him. But they're running out of time—because a killer has followed them to Cold Ridge…

Night's Landing
NIGHT'S LANDING (#2) - Archaeologist Sarah Dunnemore is prepared for almost anything when she returns to her family home in Night's Landing, Tennessee...except the news that her twin brother, Rob, has just been seriously wounded in a sniper attack in Central Park. She rushes to New York to be with him, only to come up against no-nonsense Nate Winter, who was slightly wounded in the attack.

In his work as a deputy U.S. marshal, Nate is the best, but he's willing to break the rules to track down his and Rob's would-be killer. Nate believes the official investigation is going in the wrong direction-especially when he learns that Sarah is like a surrogate daughter and a confidante to her family's famous Night's Landing neighbor-the president of the United States.

When Nate suspects that Sarah has held back crucial information, he follows her to Night's Landing. Because Nate will let nothing-not his and Sarah's growing attraction for each other, not the mounting danger they face-stand in the way of the truth. But in a place filled with betrayal, greed and long-held secrets, truth is guarded with a deadly vengeance.

The Rapids
THE RAPIDS (#3) - She has no time to take a break after playing a key role in the arrest of dangerous fugitive Nicholas Janssen. But with Janssen fighting extradition from his Dutch prison, U.S. diplomatic security agent Maggie Spencer isn't about to back off—even when U.S. marshal Rob Dunnemore turns up asking some very tough questions. Maggie has no reason to trust Rob, especially when she learns he has a personal interest: he was almost killed thanks to Janssen.

Then Maggie and Rob discover the body of an American diplomat, and they realize there's another killer on the loose. Determined to tie up the case, Maggie heads to upstate New York following a questionable lead. Knowing she's holding back on him, Rob's right on her tail. And now she has no choice but to trust him. Because a trap has been set and they have both walked right into it.

Dark Sky
DARK SKY (#4) - Deputy U.S. Marshal Juliet Longstreet has made her share of enemies, and now one of them is out of prison and threatening to kill her. Her mission: find him first.

But hot on her suspect's trail is Special Forces officer Ethan Brooker, who has a way of dropping into Juliet's life without warning. Haunted by his wife's death, Ethan is a man Juliet knows she should avoid. And now he's focused on a related mission of his own and can't—or won't—give Juliet any details.

When she finds her doorman dead and her New York apartment ransacked, Juliet tracks down Ethan—this time she wants answers. They agree to team up, and as they fight their growing attraction to each other, their race to stop a ruthless killer takes them north to Juliet's family in Vermont…and into the heart of a dangerous web of lies, greed, deceit—and murder.

Breakwater
BREAKWATER (#5) - An idyllic cottage. An unlikely suicide. A conspiracy that could blow the lid off the Department of Justice.

Three months ago Quinn Harlowe left the high-pressure hallways of the Justice Department to become an independent consultant and have more control over her life—maybe even have a life. But the nirvana of her new gig is short-lived when Quinn discovers her friend and former colleague Alicia Morrow dead outside Quinn's bayside cottage. Suicide? Quinn is doubtful.

Investigating on her own, she soon discovers that someone is following her every move. Huck McCabe claims he's a bodyguard at Breakwater, a high-security compound near Quinn's cottage. But Quinn suspects he's lying, never imagining the truth: McCabe is an undercover agent trying to penetrate a violent network of vigilantes—the same people Quinn has identified. Joined by a common goal, Quinn and McCabe must fight the bastion of law and order…a fight they know could lead to disaster.

Abandon
ABANDON (#6) - On what is supposed to be a quiet long weekend in New Hampshire, Deputy U.S. Marshal Mackenzie Stewart is viciously attacked at the lakefront cottage of her friend, federal judge Bernadette Peacham. Mackenzie fends off her attacker, but he manages to escape. Everything suggests he's a deranged drifter—until FBI special agent Andrew Rook arrives.

With Rook, Mackenzie broke her own rule not to get involved with anyone in law enforcement, but she knows he isn't up from Washington, D.C., to set things straight between them. He's on a case.

As the hunt for the mysterious attacker continues, the case takes an unexpected turn when Mackenzie follows Rook back to Washington and finds that Bernadette's former mentor, a once-powerful, now-disgraced judge who has been providing Rook with information, has gone missing. Mackenzie and Rook realize the stakes are higher than either had imagined, and a master criminal with nothing left to lose is prepared to gamble everything.

Yeah, Carla Neggers my bookshelf is kinda full,
and I still have more to add!
Carla also has a 5 novel & prequel novella FBI series called the Sharpe & Donovan Series (LOVE these characters), a 4 novel series called BDP/FBI Series (these will keep you on the edge of your seat), a 6 novel & Christmas novella series called Sweet River Valley Series (I’m a couple behind, but I’m enjoying this series as well), a 3 novel Black Falls Series (not to sound like a broken record, but I loved these too), 11 standalone novels (I’ve read all except for the two published under Carla’s other pen name, Anne Harrell), 3 anthologies (I only read one of these), and 17 novels through Harlequin (already mentioned).

Although Carla has been writing for a little over 30 years (I believe she was first published in 1983 or 1984), this still equates to an average of two novels a year. PHEW!! That’s some serious dedication to the craft, and a plethora of imagination! Even though we are around the same age, I want to be Carla when I grow up!

I hope you enjoyed meeting Carla Neggers, and I hope you fall in love with her writing just like I have.

Until next time, I hope you have a WONDERFUL day & Happy Writing!