Wednesday, May 20, 2015

On Conversations: #interview with #AAMBookclub #author Nichol Bradford

Please join me in welcoming author Nichol Bradford to Conversations today! Nichol is here to talk about book 1 in The Sisterhood Trilogy, The Sisterhood! So, check out the cover and blurb below. And don't forget to check out her interview too, and get to know Nichol Bradford!

Lisa ~
_____________________________________________

The Sisterhood

The Sisterhood tells the story of what becomes possible when intelligence and hope are channeled into an outrageous mission. Founded by Vivian Delacroix – The Sisterhood Foundation is a non-government organization funded by MSK Incorporated, a massive multinational built over decades by an organization of black women. The women invest billions into leading edge technology, pooling their profits into communities, schools, and treatment centers in the battle against Cocanol, a new and addictive drug.

The group is overwhelmingly successful until their progress is noticed by the Raptor, a ruthless enemy with pawns in the US government and ties to the Cocanol manufacturers and international power houses intent on controlling the world. As a first step in a war on the Sisterhood, Vivian is assassinated, triggering a Homeland Security investigation, a Senate inquiry, and a series of increasingly dangerous events.

To survive, the women, led by Chief Security Officer Tonia Rawlings, must fight against unseen forces. Battling across a public stage of media coverage and Wall Street, the women rush against all odds to outwit their foes – even as they execute the final stage of Vivian’s secret plan.

As their enemies draw near, the women risk everything, testing the bonds of faith, marriage and friendship. Along the way, they discover awful truths, make strange alliances and learn why they are the most dangerous women the world has ever seen. Together, they put everything on the line – testing themselves and the limitations the world tries to place on them.




Interview with Nichol Bradford

Why did you write the Sisterhood?

I wrote the book I wanted to read about strong yet vulnerable and intelligent black women committed to a great and grand goal — mental freedom and empowerment for all.   I was tired of not seeing heroes that looked like me.  I wanted to see someone like me save the world, not as a side kick or agency head, but as the actual, certifiable central hero.  I wanted to read about Olivia Pope back then, and since she didn’t exist yet, I wrote my own.    I also wanted really well-developed characters who had something on their minds other than men.  So some of the characters are happily married, and some are single, but most of all their focus is not just on their men (or lack thereof) but on their friendship and common goals.  I also love technology and so wanted the women to be deeply immersed in that world.

Why are there nine leaders in the Sisterhood?

The Sisterhood is more than a book, it is also a teaching narrative.  Each of the women represents one of nine leadership traits (discipline, self-knowledge, financial stewardship, service, sacrifice, education, vision, innovation, and entrepreneurship).  In The Sisterhood, how they address challenges to their survival illustrates what is possible with collective action and individual excellence.  They present a powerful illustration of what a group of focused women can do together.

The concept came to me on a late night drive home from a success workshop I gave during college for a group of high-school girls.  That night, I had the group stand in a circle and tell each other, one at a time and by name, that they were smart, beautiful, and could have anything that they wanted and worked for.  It was a hard session, with most of the girls unable to accept the endorsement without tears.  So many of them simply could not see it, much less believe it.

As I drove home, I thought that there had to be a better way to illustrate what fulfilling one’s potential would look like – something more penetrating than quotes from self-help books and short workshop sessions.  On that drive, I decided to write The Sisterhood.  I conceived of an organization of women, who faced a series of challenges.   Addressing those challenges would allow me to “show” versus “tell” how an individual can be successful. I went home and jotted the basic plot down which today is more or less the same.

How can I use the Sisterhood to make a Life Action Plan?

The book can be read just for entertainment, or it can be read as a skills blueprint.  Each of the characters is informed by several major skills and personality testing programs, like the Meyers-Briggs test and the Leadership Women’s EQ.   There’s a workbook that allows the reader to assess her own skills as she reads the book and then make an action plan to fill in the areas where she’d like to excel.

Are the 9 women based on real people you know?


The nine leaders are based on ALL the women I know – from the amazing women I grew up around, to those I pledged AKA with in 1990, to the women I met at in the African-American MBA Association at business school, to all the women I’ve met along the way .  One of the things I love about this book is that it represents the full diaspora – every size, shape, and hue of black women.  The women come from all backgrounds, educations, and geographies but they share a common bond through their desire to positively impact their world.  So, who is a woman of the Sisterhood?  If you are reading this interview then she might just be you.  Or maybe she’s the woman who works next to you. From businesswomen to teachers to any profession, any smart and talented woman you admire could be a secret member of The Sisterhood.  That’s part of the fun of the book too – wondering about the women in your life to guess who might be in The Sisterhood already – because maybe it isn’t just a book. 

I’ve heard allot about encouraging Black women to join STEM fields and learn how to code.  Did you hope that the Sisterhood would help that cause?

The Sisterhood makes its initial wealth from very well placed investments in technology companies.  They use that to buy into established but declining industries that they innovate and to set up their own labs to create the technology of the next generation.  Being tech-aware and tech-savvy is at the core of their success.  I do hope that young women read The Sisterhood and become more interested in technology because they see the power that it can have to create possibilities and wealth.

Did you write yourself into the Sisterhood?  Which character are you? 

There’s a part of me in every character.  But the visionary of the Sisterhood is Vivian Delacroix who is based on my mother Vivian Jones Bradford.  My mother was a visionary and entrepreneur.  She was completely committed to helping women and supporting the efforts of black women in particular.  She believed most in defending the defenseless and used her legal education to do so.   I started volunteering by her side when I was a child and she made sure that my values included service to the betterment of society.

Why should I tell my friends about the Sisterhood?

You should tell your friends that you’ve found this great book where the black women save the world.  Then tell them that there’s a character in it that reminds you of them – because that will happen while you read it – you will see yourself and all of your closest friends.  Then challenge them to read it in the next 30 days so you can talk about it and make your action plans together to fulfill your absolute potential and make all your hopes and dreams possible.



Nichol Bradford, CEO/Founder, Willow. Nichol Bradford is fascinated by human potential, and has always been interested in how technology can help individuals expand beyond their perceived mental limits to develop and transform themselves to the highest level. She spent the last decade exploring these ideas in the online game industry, serving as a senior executive with responsibility for strategy, operations and marketing for major brands that include: Activision/Blizzard, Disney, and Vivendi.

Most recently she managed the operations of Blizzard properties, including World of Warcraft, in China. Now, as the CEO of the Willow Group, Nichol is applying same skills to the realm of elevating psychological well-being. Willow is a transformative technology company focused on employing rigorous scientific research to develop training protocols, hardware and software that can produce a reliable and positive change in the human experience.

Nichol has an MBA from Wharton School of Business in Strategy, and a BBA in Marketing from the University of Houston. She is a fellow of the British American Project, currently serves on the board of the Brandon Marshall Foundation for Mental Health, and is a former term member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She is the author of The Sisterhood, and an amatuer boxer.


Find the author:
www.nicholbradford.com
www.linkedin.com/in/nicholbradford

Monday, May 11, 2015

On Conversations:#bestselling #author Dana Marton

Please join me in welcoming New York Times bestselling author, Dana Marton to Conversations today! Dana is here to talk about the first book in her Hardstorm Saga series, Reluctant Concubine. So be sure and check out the cover, blurb and excerpt below!

Lisa ~
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RELUCTANT CONCUBINE

To escape punishment, Tera, a maiden healer sold to barbarians must hide the truth: she has not yet come into her healing powers. Born into a much gentler world, she struggles to survive in a land of savage warlords and their cruel concubines. When ancient prophecies begin to come to pass, can the healer-slave save the realm and awaken the High Lord’s heart?

http://www.amazon.com/Reluctant-Concubine-Hardstorm-Saga-Book-ebook/dp/B00U6PJ14K/    http://amzn.to/1ACpmT8    http://bit.ly/1FSUbrb    http://apple.co/1EddMoM    http://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fbit.ly%2F1DFkQFC&h=mAQELTCtg&enc=AZMO1WJ2e5DRAShJhLpaPb7LJzDxszcTDmnzAscYuXTmo0fUnokU78d1NUJoYoz271m5_10b65a9YXEzJp9txi7FisA_dRnXYX0jGXkLgQ-IzKbhakXLHqElQXsNSsAvTMoSidOjbLqmP1a-HUNOcMABT2a-t6GLJGoVswQl-txJNA&s=1


Excerpt from Reluctant Concubine by Dana Marton
     
     “We must stand together.” His gaze roamed my face, his voice soft, as if he was already saying farewell forever.
     And I found I could not accept that. I pushed the robe off my shoulders and watched as his gaze followed its path to the ground. I grabbed the bottom of my short Shahala tunic and pulled it over my head.
     My skin glowed in the semidarkness like a moonflower. I heard his sharp intake of breath, every other sound drowned out by the loud rush of blood in my ears.
     “Have you come to offer your virginity for good luck?” His voice was as thick as mosan-berry syrup. And then after an eternity, he half turned from me. “We had enough sacrifices already.”
     I swallowed and forced myself to speak before I lost my courage. “I came to offer my heart.”
     He turned back slowly. “Tera.” He whispered my name, then gathered me into his strong arms. And then he kissed me.



New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Dana Marton has thrilled and entertained millions of readers around the globe with her fast-paced stories about strong women and honorable men who fight side by side for justice and survival.

Keeping in touch with readers is Dana’s favorite part of being an author. Please connect with her via her web site (www.danamarton.com) or her Facebook page (www.facebook.com/danamarton). Having lived around the world, Dana currently creates her compelling stories in a small and lovely little town in Pennsylvania. The fictional town of her bestselling Broslin Creek series is based on her real life home where she fights her addictions to reading, garage sales, coffee and chocolate. If you know a good twelve-step program to help her with any of that, she’d be interested in hearing about it!

danamarton.com
www.facebook.com/DanaMarton


Friday, May 8, 2015

On Conversations: #award-winning #author Rachael Slate

Please join me in welcoming the award-winning author, Rachael Slate to Conversations today! Rachael is here to talk about the first book in her Chinese Zodiac Romance series, Trancing the Tiger. So be sure and check out the cover, blurb and excerpt below!

Lisa ~
__________________________________________

TRANCING THE TIGER

Delve into a world steeped in tradition and superstition…
After her parents become infected with the Red Death, Lucy Yeoh flees to Malaysia seeking answers. Everything in this closed-off section of the world is paradise—from the lush tropical climate to her sexy new neighbor, Sheng…who just might be delusional. He claims the Plague God unleashed the Red Death and only a circle of Chinese Zodiac spirit animals can cleanse the Earth. Even more, he insists she’s one of them: the Rabbit. Long furry ears and fluffy bunny tail included.

He’ll show her how to fight to save the world…
As the Chosen of the Tiger, the burden of restoring balance to the world has fallen onto Li Sheng’s shoulders. When he discovers that the ally he’s long awaited, the Dragon, is actually just the Rabbit, Sheng is quick to dismiss Lucy. If only she’d stay dismissed. Lucy’s Rabbit refuses to cooperate, undermining the authority of his Tiger at every turn…and seducing him to the limits of his darkest desires. He’s not supposed to want her. Not when he needs the spirit circle complete and she’s their weakest link.

She’ll show him a love worth fighting the world to save…
Sheng’s enemies draw closer, and not everyone wants Lucy alive. Together, they’ll have to navigate a treacherous world where a line between duty and their hearts has been drawn between them. They must either sacrifice one, or find a way to surrender to both.



Excerpt from Trancing the Tiger by Rachael Slate

     “Do you really believe you’re a tiger? Like, rawr.” She pawed the air, chuckling at her horrendous imitation.
     Sheng’s lips thinned, but his eyes crinkled as though he was trying not to laugh. He leaned in dangerously close to her mouth. “Is that the sound you think a tiger makes?”
     “Isn’t it?” Her airy words fanned between them. A challenge? An invitation? Can’t tell, don’t care. She was precariously close to finding herself entranced by this sexy, baffling man.
     His hand grazed down her back, angling her body toward his, while his other came to rest on her thigh. Her bare, exposed thigh. The hem of the pink lace dress she wore barely covered her lacy thong. His fingertips skimmed along her thigh, sending cascading shivers bursting over her skin.
     “Are you going to make me do that thing again? That trance?” The way he stared at her, searching intensely, at once stimulated her and pinned her.
     “No,” he murmured. “I will not show you my Tiger again until you are ready. Until your Rabbit has come out from its den.” He stroked her cheek with his thumb, then dropped it lower to part her lips.
     “About my earlier conversation with Mei, I didn’t mean I wanted you to kiss me… Unless you want to, that is. Ah…are you going to kiss me now?” Lucy cringed. Way to be smooth, Luce.
     The corners of Sheng’s mouth curved, and his eyes flashed with amusement. “Wouldn’t you like to know.”



Rachael Slate resides on the West Coast of Canada with her husband and two children—or as she likes to call them, her own little blended world. One of the best parts about sharing in her husband’s Chinese-Malaysian culture is definitely the food—and the awesome celebrations!

Rachael writes stories that blend the lines between mythology, reality, and fantasy. In her worlds, you’ll encounter strong, sexy alpha males and the capable women who challenge them. And always, scorching hot romance.

www.rachaelslate.com


Wednesday, May 6, 2015

On Conversations: #interview with #AAMBookclub #author Lakia Nichole

Please join me in welcoming author Lakia Nichole to Conversations today! Lakia is here to talk about her new novel, Number One Fan! So, check out the cover, blurb and excerpt below. And don't forget to check out her interview too, and get to know Lakia Nichole!

Lisa ~
_____________________________________________

Number One Fan 

Chase Harper is sexy, intelligent, a style icon, and one of the most popular artists on the Pop/R&B scene. He’s also the object of all his female fans’ desires, but one in particular will go to great lengths for her desires to be met.

As his Number One Fan, nothing will stop Kennedy Hightower from being with her idol. A self-proclaimed loner with overwhelming relationship problems, Kennedy looks to her favorite star to fill a void in her life. Her admiration for Chase becomes extreme when it turns into excessive adulation and infatuation, leaving Chase wondering if he should fear for his life.

Will Kennedy’s wish to be with Chase become fulfilled or will Chase bring Kennedy back to reality?



Excerpt from Number One Fan

     A few months have passed and the New Year has approached with Kennedy’s heart becoming just as cold as the January weather she’s dealing with. Chase is at the last leg of his tour in Japan and he still hasn’t contact her, yet he makes time to update posts with tourist attractions on social media. Kennedy has already become impatient and really disappointed at Chase’s lack of communication with her. She’s also hurt, but oddly enough…she still very much cares for him.
     Snacking on a bowl of popcorn in her living room, she waits for a movie to come on cable and while she waits, she decides to scroll her Instagram. She almost chokes on her popcorn when she sees a picture of Chase and a strikingly beautiful woman of both African and Japanese decent with the caption “my future”. Knocking her popcorn from her lap onto the floor, Kennedy lets out a deep gasp and her disappointment in Chase intensifies as she lets out an uncontrollable scream. Her eyes are welling with tears while fixated on the heart-breaking image of Chase hugging the beautiful woman from behind and sealing a kiss on her cheek. Sobbing from sadness and anger echoes throughout Kennedy’s apartment, as her heart breaks into a million pieces. She didn’t expect to see anything like that at all, considering she thought Chase was in love with her.
     “How could he?” she utters, completely distraught by what she sees on her cell phone.
     Kennedy is not only upset but baffled, as she wonders who the mystery woman is. As far as she knows, Chase is single and he never appeared to be tied down with anyone. Seeing the photo on Chase’s Instagram is like a punch to the gut. However, it doesn’t take away her belief that Chase belongs to her. Kennedy now realizes she has competition with this woman, who she needs to make disappear….one way or another.


Interview with Lakia Nichole

What is Number One Fan about?

Number One Fan is about a young woman who becomes extremely obsessed with her favorite celebrity. The book also touches on what is called Celebrity Worship Syndrome. A lot of people suffer from this and don’t even realize it. My character Kennedy is the perfect example of a person with CWS but on a more extreme level. People who suffers from this are typically people who struggles with relationships in their lives, so they look to celebrities they admire to fill a void. Kennedy struggles socially as well as in relationships, particularly with men. I’m really excited about the release of the book. It’ll shed light on a real life issue, but it’s also a sexy thriller, full of drama, suspense, and it’ll definitely keep you on the edge of your seat page by page.

Do you write one particular genre?

I want to say Urban Contemporary. My style of writing is not too “project” but it’s not too “suburbs” either. I really want to say it’s somewhere in between. I’m always up for writing any genre, but I have to be in the mood to do so. My third book is a non-fiction about my life, but I don’t plan to write another non-fiction for a long time, if at all.  My true passion is fiction/Urban Contemporary.

What is the name of your publishing company and what does it mean?

It’s New Breed Publishing. It means to originate; to make new or improved and to develop a unique style. I incorporate originality into my story lines, and I expect my fiction authors to do the same. In such a competitive business where duplication is evident, New Breed Publishing strives to not recycle the story lines that we often read.

What are the names of your other books?

My first book is titled “Hidden Confessions. My second book is the sequel to “Hidden Confessions” and it’s titled “Unveiled”. I am re-releasing them this year, so expect a new look, new content, and better editing/formatting with those. My third book is “Unbroken”, the book I spoke of earlier. It chronicles my experience in dealing with child loss, lack of self-love, financial/business failure, and rising above the pain from them all.

Who are your favorite authors?

I will forever love “Coldest Winter Ever” by Sistah Souljah. When I first read that book, I didn’t expect the impact it had on me.  CWE is one of those books that you’ll never forget, because the story line was so real and raw. She inspired me to write stories that will impact my readers just the same. Danielle Steele kinda set the foundation of why I wanted to become an author. Her story lines just draws you in. You’ll be wanting more from her when you’re done with the last page. Terry McMillan is like my literary aunt in my head…LOL. Much like Danielle, she writes leaving you wanting more at the end.

If you could turn one of your books into a feature film, which one would it be & who would play the main character?

I would definitely choose “Number One Fan”. Taraji Henson would play my main character, Kennedy.

Any advice for aspiring authors?


Keep on writing and don’t ever lose focus. Stay optimistic!
 
 
With four books under her belt, Author Lakia Nichole continues to embark on this literary journey with gratefulness.  She still considers herself relatively new to this highly competitive business, but dubs her works as “page turners”. Lakia’s novels are a certain breed of literary material with an “out of this world” imagination that she incorporates in her story lines.
 
Find the author and the book: 

Saturday, May 2, 2015

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Want to help spread the word and talk about all things McKinnon, Gentry and everything else? Then join my street team! Team Lisa is open for members. 

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Friday, May 1, 2015

On Conversations: #award-winning #bestselling #author Linda Barrett

Please join me in welcoming bestselling author, Linda Barrett to Conversations today! Linda is here to talk about Sea View House, her new series set in the coastal town of Pilgrim Cove, and the first two books are available right now! So be sure and check out the covers and blurbs below, and grab your copies today!

Lisa ~
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SEA VIEW HOUSE

Some say it's magic; some say it's love. Others credit the sea, sun and sand as the healing power behind Sea view House. Does the truth really matter for the temporary residents of this special place?  In the coastal town of Pilgrim Cove, strangers are welcomed and everyone takes a front row seat as a love story unfolds.


Her Long Walk Home

Sea View House Book 1
 
Rebecca Hart has her life together--great job, great friends and ready to run the Boston Marathon. Then her life turns in an instant when she'd injured in the bombing.

Single dad and veterinarian, Adam Fielding, intends to remain a bachelor after being "abandoned" twice. Once by the love of his life and once by a second-best girlfriend.

When Rebecca arrives at Sea View House to recover, neither she nor Adam is prepared to let the magic of the place affect them.

Will these two open their hearts and run toward a new finish line together?
 
Read an excerpt from Her Long Walk Home HERE.
 
Purchase: Amazon / Nook / Kobo / iBooks



Her Picture-Perfect Family

Sea View House Book 2
 
Kindergarten teacher Joy MacKenzie trusts everyone and loves her life in Pilgrim Cove. Hidden beneath her outgoing veneer, however, Joy knows true happiness will never be hers. She is unable to have children of her own. Her dreams of marriage and a family are over.

Once a foster child, photojournalist Logan Nash is back in the states after embedding with U.S. troops. A loner by choice, he trusts no one, not even himself, as he tries to become a dad to his newly adopted war dog, Ajax. Need a place with privacy, Logan rents the big house on the beach. Except he want' expecting an upstairs neighbor.

Logan is left with little choice but to deal with exuberant Joy who creates havoc in his carefully ordered world. Joy will do almost anything to unlock Logan's secrets and reveal the caring person behind the solitary man.

The magic of Sea View House draws them together, but only by letting go of the past can they truly find a new beginning.
 
Read an excerpt from Her Picture-Perfect Family HERE.
 
Purchase: Amazon / Nook / Kobo / iBooks


Linda Barrett grew up on New York City, earning a B.A. and M.S. at Hunter College. In her teaching career, she first worked with children and then with adults, preparing them to take the GED exam. To keep herself from getting bored during long New England winters, Linda began writing romance fiction. Her emotional stories have earned many industry awards through Romance Writers of America including the Holt Medallion, the Award of Excellence, the Write Touch Readers' Award among others. Linda and her husband live in Florida. They have three grown sons.

You can visit Linda on the web at www.linda-barrett.com


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

On Conversations: #bestselling #author Pamela Aares

Please join me in welcoming the USA Today bestselling author, Pamela Aares to Conversations today! Pamela is here to talk about Love Bats Last, her FREE sizzling romance to spice up your springtime nights. So be sure and check out the cover and blurb below, and download your FREE copy of Love Bats Last today!

Lisa ~
__________________________________________

LOVE BATS LAST

All-Star first baseman Alex Tavonesi has his hands full: he inherits the family vineyard and is fighting to win one of baseball’s most coveted honors, the Triple Crown. But when he meets veterinarian Jackie Brandon by chance in a midnight storm and helps her rescue a stranded whale, the passion she fires derails his careful practices and plans. But Jackie has no time for rich jocks. Will she discover that Alex's rock-hard body hides a big heart? And what will Alex sacrifice to save the woman he loves when he find out that loving her may cost them their lives?

Get this captivating suspense-filled romance for FREE today at any vendor:


Pamela Aares is USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary and historical romance novels and also writes about fictional romance in sports with her new Tavonesi Series. Get ready for Alpha male All-Stars and the strong women they come to love!

Her first book, Jane Austen and the Archangel was released in 2012. Midnight Becomes You, the second in the Angels Come to Earth series will release in 2015 as will the celebrated historical romance novel, The Lady and the Patriot.

Her popularity as a romance writer continues to grow with each new book release, so much so, that the Bay area author has drawn comparisons by readers and reviewers to Nora Roberts.

Before becoming a romance author, Aares wrote and produced award-winning films including Your Water, Your Life, featuring actress Susan Sarandon and NPR series New Voices, The Powers of the Universe and The Earth’s Imagination. She holds a Master’s degree from Harvard and currently resides in the wine country of Northern California with her husband, a former MLB All-Star and two curious cats.

If not behind her computer, you can probably find her reading a romance novel, hiking the beach or savoring life with friends. You can visit Pamela on the web at http://www.PamelaAares.com



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