Winners announced: Goodreads contest

Announcing book winjoy coverners, Goodreads contest: Krystyna Smith, New York, Wanda Snow Porter and Emily Stemp, California, Wend Holland from Ontario, Canada and Anthony Ingram from Washington state. A copy of The Return of Joy is going in the mail. Watch for a chance to win Book 1 in the Starting Over Series, More Than a Job, coming tomorrow.

Get your copy at Desert Breeze Publishing or Amazon.

Atlas, Mark’s dog, plays a key role in The Return of Joy

Excerpts from The Return of Joy:atlas cropped 2

Mark turned to Charity. “And who is this young lady?”

“This is my granddaughter, Charity.” Evelyn grinned, then busied herself with placing Charity on the ground. She was sucking on her fingers and eyeing the dog. She pointed to him, not frightened exactly but cautious. “Does he bite?”

“Hi, Charity.” Mark put out a hand to solemnly shake her pointing finger. “No, he doesn’t bite. And he loves pats and hugs and kisses. Would you like to pet him?”

Charity nodded, and Mark guided her hand to the animal’s head. Charity giggled and patted the dog with both hands.

“Can I lick him?” she asked soberly, no doubt thinking of doggy kisses.

All three adults chuckled at that.

“No, Charity, just regular people kisses, okay?” Mark crouched beside her and looked up at Evelyn. “She’s a wonder, Evelyn. You must love having a granddaughter.”

*****

When Charity dropped to the floor next to Atlas and showed him one of the books, Mark laughed out loud.

“What’s so funny?”

“She’s reading to the dog,” he pointed out.

“She’s been doing that for a couple of weeks, Mark.” So proud of both the girl and the dog she could hardly stand it, Joy grinned. “Josie has a therapy dog who listens to kids read at a local library. She helped us make sure Atlas could do the same.” Joy pulled a paper out of the pile of presents on the table. “Atlas passed his test. All we need is your permission to send everything in, and he can be an official therapy dog, too.”

Looking confused, Mark scratched his head. “A therapy dog? He’s just… you know, a family dog.”

Joy smiled and stepped closer to Mark. She patted his chest.

“I know he is your dog. That’s why we won’t pursue this if you don’t want to.” She turned and slid an arm around his waist. “But look at them. They’re so happy reading together.”

Mark looked, shaking his head. “He’s just lying there. He isn’t even looking at the pictures.”

“That’s what Charity said the first tim603986_377554449000333_815996728_ne. Then Josie explained he likes to listen to her tell the story. Charity can’t actually read yet, of course, but she’s learning to share, to decipher from the pictures, and turn the pages. You should see Josie’s dog, Zoey, at the library, surrounded by children from toddlers through about second grade. They all crowd around and pet her, and take turns reading to her.”

“So if you send in Atlas’ paperwork and he becomes a therapy dog, what does that mean, exactly?”

“It means I can volunteer with him at a local school or library, where kids will do just what Charity’s doing now. Read out loud to the dog.”

“And they don’t realize he doesn’t understand?”

“Nope.” Joy chuckled. “You should have seen Atlas at his reading test. One little boy read a book about Little Pig Piglet, who couldn’t sleep. At the end of the story when he read that Little Pig Piglet finally fell asleep, Atlas flopped over on his side on top of the book as if he was falling asleep, too. So of course he must understand. He doesn’t really, of course, but the children are so excited about being the ones to read out loud, and the dogs are so non-judgmental, that they get better and better at reading when they read to a dog. And the dogs never correct them, I might add.”

Mark seemed skeptical.

“I guess you have to see it to understand.” She looked up into his eyes. “Josie had one boy who came in with his grandpa who told us he couldn’t read but would it be okay if he petted the dog? Josie said sure, of course, and he knelt down beside Zoey and began to talk to her, saying ‘Good dog. You’re a good dog.’ When we looked up at Grandpa he had tears in his eyes. I asked him if he was okay and he nodded and told us it was the first time his grandson had spoken in months – that he has autism and has difficulty talking to people. But not to the dog!”

Buy The Return of Joy from Desert Breeze Publishing or Amazon.

Animal Helper “Scat Cat” from Survival Instinct

Each Time After Time book includes a helper from the animal kingdom.  Meet Winter’sIMG_0606

Winter swiped a heavy hand against the sandpaper abrasion wetting her cheek.

A cat meowed

Her brows drew into a frown. Meow?

More sandpaper, then a nudge on her cheek from a wet, somewhat smelly head.

The sound of the ocean registered, and as she struggled to pry her eyes open, memories of the early morning events filtered through her brain.

She squinted up to the sky. The sun was at about ten a.m. Obviously, she hadn’t made the start of her shift, first day.

She could still smell rain in the air but the storm had passed and now the skies were blue. Only in San Francisco.

Another meow.

She turned her throbbing head and met the unblinking golden eyes of a calico cat. “Scat Cat?” she asked in confusion, realizing the second drug hadn’t targeted her vocal cords.

The undernourished, soaking wet cat purred, long and loud.

“You can’t be Scat Cat,” she murmured, reaching up and scratching the feline under its chin.

It couldn’t be the same cat. It was impossible the alley cat who had followed her to and from school since kindergarten, followed her back and forth from her part time job each and every day, then even to the bus stop the very day she had left town, was the same cat.

Scat Cat, because Winter had shouted the words to the cat, along with a hissing noise and a stomping foot, each and every day, worried the fool cat would get hit by a car by following her around everywhere.

SurvivalInstinctCoverArtEverywhere, that was, except her home. Oddly, when Winter was home, the stray cat never lingered.

She shook the cobwebs from her head and sat up. She had been wedged between two large boulders, completely hidden from the spread of beach where she and her captors had gathered earlier this morning.

Her rain gear was gone, as was the bloody clothing underneath the gear.

She had her own clothes on, right down to her combat boots and she shuddered to think who of the twelve men had striped her and replaced her clothing.

Clearly they had breached the high tech security apartment on the third floor of one San Francisco’s Victorian ‘Painted Ladies’, to get her things. Her hand-held hologram cell phone lay at her feet, along with a sealed bag holding a manila envelope, with the word “Evidence” in bold letters stamped onto it at an angle.

It didn’t take much of a guess to know inside the envelope would be the photo of the man she was supposed to bleed for information, then kill.

She shuddered and scooped up her cell and the bag.

The cat continued to stare at her, almost like she was studying her. Unnerved, Winter waved the cat away. “Scat, cat!”

Just as with the cat back home — and no, she was not ready to consider this was the same cat — this cat simply sat and stared.

AnimalInstinctCoverArt_1“You will have a helper from the animal kingdom.”

Winter lunged to her feet and the world went dark at the edges of her vision. She pivoted, her combat boots crunching wet sand and pebbles as she scanned the empty beach for who had spoken.

The cat meowed.

She jerked her gaze to the cat, sitting serenely at her feet, large golden eyes fixed up at her.

Winter pointed to the cat. “You didn’t just speak to me.”

Winter had had enough. She was late to work, and she’d been drugged twice. She was going to drag herself into the precinct late and looking like — she glanced at the cat again — like something the cat dragged in, and everyone one would put it off to too many drinks last night.

Download on April 11 to read the rest of this story.  Or read about Winter’s grandmother, Dr. Allison Green, a veterinarian who also bore the Heartmark and was fated to face the enemy who chases the women of the Heartmark through time.

Love in the Midst of Turmoil – Detective Forced by Crooked Cops

SurvivalInstinctCoverArtWill Winter be forced to do their bidding?

Winter tried to shake herself awake. She was standing, barely, kept on her feet by two sets of meaty hands lodged under her armpits.

It took a moment to realize the roaring in her ears was coming from the Pacific Ocean.

She blinked the ocean into focus, and then turned her gaze to the semi-circle of people in front of her.

They were all tall. She counted ten of them in the dawn light, an even dozen counting the two holding her upright, all dressed in hooded police-issue rain gear. The cloth badges glued over their hearts were getting soaked with the mist and the steady, light downfall of rain.

The sound of rain hitting plastic filtered through her stunned brain, and she glanced down at herself.

She was also completely covered with her hooded rain gear.

What was going on?

She tried to make her mouth work, but it was dry and her vocal cords were tight, barely allowing air into her lungs, much less allowing her to speak.

One of the officers at the center of the pack stepped forward. As with the others, she could not see his face through the deep plastic hood.

He reached to his throat and flicked a switch on a VDB, a voice disguising box. “The drug we used to knock you out makes it impossible for you to speak. All you have to do during this little staff meeting is listen.”

Her hood was jerked off her head by the man on her left, and her eyes widened at the leader’s words.

She’d been drugged? Her heart thundered within her breast in panic. She struggled to assess if or how they had harmed her.

He laughed, the sound altered to a robot-like cackle, rather than a person; making it  impossible to identify the speaker or even if be sure he was a man.

“No, not that drug.” He smirked. “We haven’t spent the night taking advantage of you. That would be unethical and we are all sworn to uphold the law.”

Was he serious, or was sarcasm lacing his words?

Her mind raced as the effects of the drug lessened by the moment.

Twelve men, police officers, if the speaker were to be believed, had drugged her and rendered her voiceless.

Why?

“There’s a small task we have decided only you can take care of for us.”

She frowned at him. The cold rain plastered her hair to her scalp and ran into her eyes and down her face, dripping from her chin. Her heart raced so fast she was surprised it didn’t beat out of her chest.

The metallic taste of fear filled her dry mouth and her stomach did a slow churn.

Her knees buckled and the hands holding her up tightened so she could not slip out of their hold.

She was going to have bruises the size of hams when this was over.

“There’s a reporter in town.”

Something in the cadence of his words seemed familiar. Did she know her attackers?

“He is doing some… shall we say investigating…, on our little band here.” The leader’s arm swept out to encompass the other officers. “Your task it to find out what he knows about us and make sure any incriminating information is destroyed, before you get rid of him.”

She frowned at him and shook her head, completely at a loss. Why would a reporter investigate a group of officers? What had they done to warrant the notice of the press?

She tried to ask, to make her vocal cords relax enough to get the questions through.

The hooded officer standing next to the leader reached to his throat and flicked a switch on his VDB. “She doesn’t have a clue what you’re talking about.”

The leader nodded. “Then perhaps we should spell it out for her.”

Five officers took three steps to the left and the other five men of the semi-circle took three steps to the right. There, on the sand, was the lifeless body of the creep who had come on to her last night. Eyes she had stared down in the bar mirror were now glazed with death and sightlessly fixed on her.

Download and read April 11 from Desert Breeze Publishing.

Scat Cat, Winter’s Animal Helper

Winter swiped a heavy hand against the sandpaper abrasion wetting her cheek.86485493

A cat meowed

Her brows drew into a frown. Meow?

More sandpaper, then a nudge on her cheek from a wet, somewhat smelly head.

The sound of the ocean registered, and as she struggled to pry her eyes open, memories of the early morning events filtered through her brain.

She squinted up to the sky. The sun was at about ten a.m. Obviously, she hadn’t made the start of her shift, first day.

She could still smell rain in the air but the storm had passed and now the skies were blue. Only in San Francisco.

Another meow.

She turned her throbbing head and met the unblinking golden eyes of a calico cat. “Scat Cat?” she asked in confusion, realizing the second drug hadn’t targeted her vocal cords.

The undernourished, soaking wet cat purred, long and loud.

“You can’t be Scat Cat,” she murmured, reaching up and scratching the feline under its chin.

It couldn’t be the same cat. It was impossible the alley cat which had followed her to and from school since kindergarten, followed her back and forth from her part time job each and every day, then even to the bus stop the very day she had left town, was the same cat.

Scat Cat, because Winter had shouted the words to the cat, along with a hissing noise and a stomping foot, each and every day, worried the fool cat would get hit by a car by following her around everywhere.

Except her home. Oddly, when Winter was home, the stray cat never lingered.

She shook the cob webs from her head and sat up. She had been wedged between two large boulders, completely hidden from the spread of beach where she and her captors had gathered earlier this morning.

Her rain gear was gone, as was the bloody clothing underneath the gear.

She had her own clothes on, right down to her combat boots and she shuddered to think who of the twelve men had striped her and replaced her clothing.

Clearly they had breached the high tech security of her third floor historical Victorian to get her things. Her hand-held hologram cell phone lay at her feet, along with a sealed bag holding a manila envelope, with the word “Evidence” in bold letters stamped onto it at an angle.

It didn’t take much of a guess to know inside the envelope would be the photo of the man she was supposed to bleed for information, then kill.

She shuddered and scooped up her cell and the bag.

The cat continued to stare at her, almost like she was studying her. Unnerved, Winter waved the cat away. “Scat, cat!”

Just as with the cat back home — and no, she was not ready to consider this was the same cat — this cat simply sat and stared.

“You will have a helper from the animal kingdom.”

Winter lunged to her feet and the world went dark at the edges of her vision. She pivoted, her combat boots crunching wet sand and pebbles as she scanned the empty beach for who had spoken.

The cat meowed.

She jerked her gaze to the cat, sitting serenely at her feet, large golden eyes fixed up at her.

Winter pointed to the cat. “You didn’t just speak to me.”


 

What Readers Say

DownandOutCoverArtReviews – Down & Out by Marcy G Dyer

From the Amazon page for this new book release:
5.0 out of 5 stars Great action mild Romance, January 4, 2013 By Janice Herrera This book is fast moving with good action. I couldn’t put it down. I will buy other books by this author.
 
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it!, January 4, 2013 By Laressa Talavera Fast paced and a good read. Could not put It down Can not wait to read more from this author.
 
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyed reading this book, January 4, 2013 By Janice Fitts A fast-paced mystery. It was suspenseful and clean! A wonderful start to a successful career! Good luck and will be waiting your next book!
 
5.0 out of 5 stars Good, real writing, January 18, 2013 By Brandon Dyer’s writing is real, to the point, and inspirational. Very good story, too. Can’t wait to read her next one.
5.0 out of 5 stars Down & Out, January 17, 2013 By lindach Love this book. You don’t want to put it down. It’s spell binding. Love the story line and the references in this book. Couldn’t wait to see what happened next. Easy to read and understand. Can’t wait for the next book by Marcy Dyer.
 
5.0 out of 5 stars Down and Out is Up and Coming, January 17, 2013 By Morris Leach
This has been a great read. The plot, action, and suspense just grabs and holds you. After reading this first book from this author I believe that we will see many more great books from her. It is refreshing that you don’t have to wade through verbal dung to get to the story, like you do with so many authors today. Keep up the good work Marcy Dyer. I’m looking forward to your next book!.
 
5.0 out of 5 stars Down & Out, January 13, 2013 By proudgrammy This book was extremely good and held my interest all the way through until the end. I am eagerly awaiting the next book by this author.
 
5.0 out of 5 stars Desert Winds Book One: Down and Out, January 12, 2013 By Heather Escobedo I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It is a real page turner. There are chills, thrills, laughter, and romance. Never a dull moment. I stayed up all night to finish it.
5.0 out of 5 stars want more!, January 9, 2013 By Cathy B
 I downloaded it today & could not put it down.  When I had to surrender the computer to my husband I finished it on my phone. Very easy read – not full of 6 page sex scene fillers. Characters that were “real” and believable. Loved the local flavor added in – they really are the best hamburgers around in Odessa. I want the next one released SOONER!!!!!!!
Download Down & Out from Amazon with one click!

Latest Release from Christian Author

Marcy G. Dyer writes Romantic Suspense

Marcy G. Dyer is a Registered Nurse and suspense author. Like so many other writers, she began writing at a very young age. Her debut novel, Down & Out3cb47509f82a0a7f023590.L._V395431423_SX200_ – Desert Winds Series Book One, is available now. The second book in the series, Out For Blood, will be released on 08/11/2013.

In addition to writing, Marcy is a freelance editor. She does editing for individuals, Desert Breeze Publishing, and Prism Book Group.

Marcy is an alumni of the Christian Writer’s Guild and long-time member of American Christian Fiction Writers. She hosts a small critique group for ACFW and is involved in two other critique groups.

As followers of Jesus Christ, Marcy and her family are active members of Crossroads Fellowship in Odessa, Texas.

Check out her Amazon Author Page or download today from her publisher, Desert Breeze Publishing. You can find Marcy on the web at http://www.marcydyer.com/  or follow on Facebook.

Blurb: When a down on her luck publicist moves home to Odessa, Texas, she’s thrust into a volatile job with a handsome security consultant showing her the ropes when a stranger decides she must be his and he’s determined to win her love – at any cost. Can the handsome consultant protect her from the stalker or will she end up buried in the desert?

Down and Out – Suspense in Texas

DownandOutCoverArtA Texas Story from a Christian Author

When a down on her luck publicist moves home to Odessa, Texas, she’s thrust into a volatile job with a handsome security consultant showing her the ropes when a stranger decides she must be his and he’s determined to win her love – at any cost. Can the handsome consultant protect her from the stalker or will she end up buried in the desert?


EXCERPT

Candace hunkered down in the floorboard of the truck. Why had she taken this job? She really didn’t need to eat. Maybe if she had to do without food for a while she could fit into smaller jeans, like the munchkin at the western store wore.

A gunshot rang out, and Candace vomited.

“Great. Barbie just tossed her cookies.” Beth Anne sighed.

Enough was enough. She wouldn’t put up with the leprechaun’s taunts any longer.

“I’m sorry if I don’t live up to your standards, Dumpling,” she snapped. “I’ve never had anyone shoot at me.”

“Dumpling? You little–”

“Enough, you two. Quit acting like spoiled junior-high girls. If you haven’t realized it, we’re in a little bit of a mess here.”

And if she ever got out of it, Candace would tell Carl he could shove his job. Everyone told her how dangerous New York would be. Right. She never got shot at there.
More shots rang out, and her hands shook. “Thank goodness we’re in the truck. If they don’t shoot the windows, we should be okay. Right?”

Josiah barked out a short laugh. “Don’t know much ‘bout guns, do ya, doll?”

“Not really. I know gun safety, and I’m a good shot, but that’s it.”

“A bullet can go through the metal of the door.” Beth Ann’s tone grew snarkier with each word. “It may or may not have enough force to come all the way inside depending upon the caliber. There’s your education for today, Barbie.”

“Thanks for nothing, Dumpling.”

Sirens sounded in the distance, and Candace prayed the police would arrive in time to save them. She couldn’t die like this, hunkered down in the floor of a flatbed truck with a puke-covered seat. At least she hadn’t peed her pants. Yet.

Download Down and Out today! Visit her website www.marcydyer.com and her Amazon author page.

Sizzling scenes and this latest book…

When I was very young and newly married the wonders of the physical relationship in marriage continually surprised and pleased me. And that is when I started writing The Return of Joy.

I mean, blushing newlyweds have very clear memories of the sizzle, right? And fantasies.

And frankly I enjoy reading sizzling scenes.

During this early period in our now almost 38 year old marriage I was trading books with one of my brothers. I often did this, for multiple genres. He surprised me by giving me a stack of thick, sexy romantic books by Kathlene Woodwiss. “What I like best,” he said at the time, “is that there is some great sex but it is only between people who are married to each other.”

That stuck with me, and so when I thought through this story of Joy and Mark I thought about that approach.

So warning — there are some sizzling scenes in this book. And (spoiler alert?) the characters are married when it happens.

Now they were married before, to different people, so they are also more experienced than the virgins in the first book of the series. That experience may show, too. But there are also other people in the house, so it’s not like they can be too consumed by their attraction to each other. But that makes the sizzle more fun.

I hope you enjoy this shift in the starting over stories. The third one is very different than either of the first two. Each story of starting over, each set of circumstances and characters are very different. Still, it is possible to find joy and love and life after something terrible has happened.

So if you want a little extra sizzle download The Return of Joy today. The Amazon link is here, and the link for my publisher is in the prior post.

http://www.amazon.com/Starting-Over-Book-Two-ebook/dp/B009TVWU40/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1350859782&sr=8-1&keywords=the+return+of+joy+lynette+endicott