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Friday, April 29, 2016

Dearest Prince...Guest Blog Post by Nicole Jones

Last week the world took a major hit smack dab in the face when the news broke that Prince Rogers Nelson had suddenly passed away at the age of 57. Another musical icon gone. The first person that I thought of was my sister from another mother, Nicole. I posted a picture with the word, "HUGS" and typed seven letters..."No words," because I didn't have any. My mouth was open but the words refused to leave. It was as if they were in as much shock as I was.

My sister, Nicole is Prince's #1 fan. So, I asked her if she would write something for the world to read in honor of Mr. Prince Rogers Nelson.

Thank you Nicole for a beautiful tribute! Yes, his music IS immortal.

Dearest Prince,

I have been under your spell forever. I knew when I first heard you speak the words "Dearly Beloved" in the beginning of Purple Rain, I would never be the same. Who was this man? The purple. The lace. The heels. The hair. The shiny guitar. The falsetto. The swag. 

You exploded into my world. I had never seen anyone like you. I would buy your records and sit in my room for hours, reading the lyrics on the backs of the albums. I started writing like you - 2's, 4's, 8's, U's. I devoured your music. I became your fan.

I loved you when I was too young to understand your genius. All I knew was that I was listening to magic. I remember being around nine years old, locking myself in my room and playing the Sign ‘o the Times album over and over and over again. I thought you were speaking to me. Just me. I didn’t think I’d ever hear a song as beautiful as Adore. I wanted to walk down the aisle to Forever In My Life. When I heard you manipulate your voice, the way you’d stretch in a million different directions within the span of a few seconds, it was as if you were trying to reach every part of all of us. I would listen and listen until I was intoxicated, exiting my room, head spinning.

Your music became my safe place. I could drown out the whole world – family, school, stress. Your music was the very first thing I reached for when I needed something to cheer me up, when I was in mourning, when I wanted to celebrate, when I wanted to dance, when I wanted to vent, when I wanted to smile, when I wanted to cry and get it all out.

Last week’s news knocked the wind out of me, like I’d lost a family member. It seems crazy to feel so devastated about a person who I've never officially met, or have never had a real conversation with. But your impression on my life is indelible and permanent. My life’s memories are interwoven with your music. You provided my soundtrack. I guess I naively thought you were immortal and would never die. Seeing your name linked with past tense verbs makes my head spin. I don’t think I’ll ever fully comprehend.

I’ve been in deep thought this past week, trying to figure out why this loss has been so profound for me. I read somewhere that each and every person has someone who resonates with them. Oftentimes, it’s someone of a creative nature. Artists have a way of reaching the most inner core of our souls, that place that identifies our actions, feelings and sense of self.When the creative entity one identifies with passes away, it rocks ones fragile core. Equilibrium must be reestablished. It’s almost like I needed to reboot.

But I promise not to wallow too much. I will listen to your music because that IS immortal. Your beautiful, eclectic, brilliant, weird, genius music. It's an inspiration to us all to know the effect we can have on people that we don’t even know. It’s a motivation to be great at what we do without shortcuts and staying 100% true to ourselves. Our passions can outlive us and mold millions. Our days can be up long before we are ready and all that’s left is the impression we’ve left. And my sweet Prince, what an impression you've left. I hope you’re playing in the sunshine.

Darling Nikki

"I want to live life to the ultimate high. Maybe I'll die young like heroes die". -"Under the Cherry Moon" 1986

Nicole Jones is a wife and mother who resides in Atlanta, GA. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family, exercising, reading, and of course – listening to Prince.

Friday Finds-Virtuous Deception 2 by Leiann Wrytes

Each Friday I'll share a book that I've read or has piqued my interest to wear the crown as Friday Finds. Today it's Virtuous Deception 2 by Leiann B. Wrytes. This is a book that has peeked my interest. 

Print Length: 288 pages
  • Publisher: A Million Thoughts Publishing (N'Tyse Enterprises Presents) (March 15, 2016)
  • Publication Date: March 15, 2016

Virtuous Deception 2 Synopsis

Teetering along the edge of hopelessness, Michelle's grasp on reality is rapidly thinning as her world collapses. When infidelity strikes her last safe place, the effects of the betrayal are brutal, pitting Michelle against everyone and everything she loves.

Sophie Lewis is in the midst of building a relationship with her estranged daughter, Brianna, when an old love returns, bringing a consortium of hurts along with him.

After narrowly escaping death at the hands of her ex-lover, Javan, Brianna views life in a completely different light. Struggling to recapture the peace she once enjoyed, Brianna seeks comfort in all the wrong places. Desperation permits the unthinkable as she finds herself on the wrong end of a love story.

Author Bio

Leiann B Wrytes is an author, poet, and playwright. Leiann found a love for words early on as a spoken word poet and was inducted into the International Society of Poets at 15 years of age. She has served as an editor for several small publications, mentors aspiring writers, and manages a small custom poetry business. Leiann's debut novel, Virtuous Deception, named one of the top 100 books of 2014 by Conversations Book Club, garnered her a nomination for AAMBC author of the year, AMB Ovation Award for Outstanding Debut Author In Urban Literature nomination, and glowing reviews. Leiann B. Wrytes currently resides in Dallas TX with her family, feverishly working on her next novel and preparing to take on her next role as Associate Producer for the fascinating documentary, Behind The Mask, which goes into production this summer.

Leiann is very active on social media. Reach her on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook: @leiannbwrytes, via email, or through her website

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Her Kind of Man Launch Day Blitz

Today is the release of Elle Wright's new book, Her Kind of Man. The third book in her Edge of Scandal series.


When Mr. Right is oh so wrong...

I'll never let you go . . . Allina had always dreamed of hearing those words. But when her fiancĂ©, Isaac, utters them, it isn't a promise-it's a threat. Scared and confused, with only moments before the wedding, Allina knows what she must do. Forget walking down the aisle; it's time to run. Back to Michigan. Back to Kent.

Kent has loved Allina for longer than he can remember. Out of respect for their friendship, he's never crossed the line, but when she turns up on his doorstep wearing her torn, tearstained wedding gown, the fire inside him ignites. He'll do whatever it takes to make Allina feel safe-like the beautiful, desirable woman she is. But as Kent and Allina grow closer, and their passion pushes deeper, it's clear that something bigger than a botched wedding still lingers between them . . .

Goodreads:  Click link to purchase


Born and raised in Southeast Michigan near Ann Arbor, Elle learned the importance of reading from her mother. It was also her mother who, later on in her life, gave Elle her first romance novel:  Indigo by Beverly Jenkins.  From that moment on, Elle became a fan of Ms. Jenkins for life and a lover of all things romance.  An old journal she wrote back in college became her first book (which she still wants to publish one day).

HER KIND OF MAN by Elle Wright
Forever / On Sale: April 26, 2016

Release Day Blitz Excerpt

Allina got up and carried her dishes over to the sink. She turned on the faucet and filled up the basin with water. “I’m going to clean up and get ready to go to the store.”
He finished up his plate and joined her at the sink. Not thinking, he dropped his mug into the dishwater, splashing the soapy water on Allina. She screeched and stumbled back. He reached for her, sensing she was getting ready to fall. Instead of preventing her fall, she ended up pulling him with her and they both landed on the floor, her on her back and him on his side.
“Ouch,” she groaned from her where she lay on the tile. “That hurt.” She wiped her face and pushed her hair back, leaving a few suds on her face.
He chuckled. “That was . . . clumsy.”
She laughed then. “It was crazy. How did I fall? There was no water on the floor.” She pointed at him. “It was your fault.”
He grabbed her finger. “It was not my fault you can’t stay on your feet.”
She flicked some remaining soap on him. It was a running joke with their crew. Syd was dramatic, Cali had no filter, and Allina was clumsy as hell. It didn’t matter where they were or what they were doing, Allina always seemed to get hurt.
Before he knew it, they were both laughing in earnest. She turned to him. “I needed this.”
He tucked a piece of hair behind her ear. “Glad I could help. I’ve never met anyone who is more accident-prone than you.”
She grinned, her eyes gleaming. “Hey. Don’t say that.”
He stood up and held out a hand to her. When she placed her tiny palm in his, he pulled her to her feet.
Brushing off her clothes, she murmured, “My body is al- ready sore from that run. Now my back is throbbing.”
“Maybe you should go lie down for a little bit before we go to the store,” he suggested. “I have a heating pad some- where if you need it.”
She waved him off. “I’m good.” Peering up at him, she smiled again. A wide grin. “I need to keep moving.”
Kent observed her. Her cheeks were flushed and her eyes dancing and he found himself inching closer to her. A piece of her hair was stuck to her forehead and he pushed it to the back.
“I must look crazy,” she said, smoothing a hand over her hair.
One of the things Kent found so attractive about Allina was her sultry, deep voice. She talked like she was singing a lullaby. It was low, even, and sexy as hell. And what made it even better was she had no idea it could have an effect on a man.
As if he had no power or control to stop himself, he leaned closer. She peered up at him and froze. Instead of retreating, she stayed where she was, her eyes on his.
The air changed in that instant. He brushed her cheek with his thumb and she gasped. Their noses were almost touching. He knew he should step back, walk away, but he couldn’t. His body had a mind of its own.
His nose bumped into hers. Her breath still smelled like the honey from her tea. It was warm against his skin. He wanted to kiss her, more in that moment than ever before. Then her lips brushed against his. It wasn’t a full-on kiss, but enough to make him want more. He framed her face with his hands and kissed the corner of her mouth, enjoying her sharp intake of breath. She squeezed his biceps, her nails digging into the sensitive skin.
“Kent,” she whispered. “Are you sure you want to do this?”
“Do you want me to?” he asked, unable to keep his eyes off her mouth. It was amazing how one simple touch had opened up the box that labeled them “very close friends.” He imagined how it would feel to really taste her, to feel her tongue against his, to touch her the way he wanted.
But then where would that leave them? Confused and awkward around each other? Allina wasn’t just any woman. He couldn’t do her first and ask the hard questions later, be- cause she deserved better than that. They had never really talked about sex with each other before, but knowing her the way he did, he figured she was careful about who and what she did. Being with her, or even kissing her, was a game changer. But, damn-it, I want to.
Sighing, he stepped back. He scratched his head. “I’m sorry. This isn’t right. We better get going.”
Then he left her standing there in the kitchen.

© 2016, by Elle Wright

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