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Monday, December 17, 2018

Beyond Paradise by Barbara Nolan Book Tour & Giveaway


Beyond Paradise
by Barbara Nolan
Genre: Romantic Suspense

Jonny Vallone, the dark, brooding owner of Manhattan nightclub, Beyond Paradise, doesn’t need any more complications in his life, or women. Then savvy con artist Cheryl Benson, barges into his office and spits out a confession that would make most men run for cover.


Cheryl’s fast-paced, out-of-control life is closing in, and her only hope against a ruthless crime boss is bad boy Jonny and his powerful connections. Her knight in black Brioni has a body made for sin with enough baggage to fill a 747, but when a near-fatal attack throws the two together, they implode in a night of steamy, sheet-gripping passion.

Jonny can’t resist the beautiful blonde with the pleading green eyes plus he has his own agenda with the underworld thug who owns a piece of his soul.

Their wild ride whisks them from the high-powered glitz of Manhattan to the sultry beaches of Miami in a desperate attempt to break free of their shady pasts while trying to tame their fiery passion and the dangerous deceptions swirling around them.






Barbara Nolan enjoyed writing most of her life and recently acquired her Certificate in Creative Writing from NYU. She also benefited from the help and influence of many talented professors and editors along the way. She is a member of RWA and the New Jersey chapter of Romance Writers. Her passion for reading and words make this a journey of love.


She writes gritty, realistic stories filled with strong men and the women who tame them.

She considers reading a luxury and writing a necessity.




Follow the tour HERE for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!





The Christmas Countdown by Ani Gonzalez Virtual Book Tour & Giveaway





The Christmas Countdown
Holiday Lake
Book One
Ani Gonzalez



Genre: Romance, Romantic Comedy

Publisher: FAC Publishing LLC

Date of Publication: 12/1/2018

Number of pages: 175
Word Count: 35k

Cover Artist: Ani Gonzalez

Tagline: A perfect Christmas in twenty-four hours? What could possibly go wrong…or unexpectedly go right?

Book Description:

For the residents of Holiday Lake, Minnesota, there is no such thing as too much Christmas cheer. The tiny town prides itself on celebrating the holiday every day of the year and their halls are decked with boughs of holly all year round.

Yet this December twenty-third, professional holiday decorator Nat Quinn, known as "The Christmas Queen”, has had enough. After a hectic year helping clients set up the absolutely-perfect-to-the-last-detail backdrops for the festive season, she is ready to relax. That’s when divorced billionaire and workaholic Cyrus Blackstone makes a proposal she can’t turn down: Provide the perfect holiday for his children in exchange for the beach vacation of her dreams.

A perfect Christmas in twenty-four hours? That’s a tall order, even for the Queen of Christmas and her team in Holiday Lake. As Nat races to fulfill her assignment, she realizes that the real challenge isn't the tinsel and pudding... it’s not falling in love.

Excerpt
CYRUS ENDED the call, satisfied. That was one action item taken care of.
He headed for a built-in mahogany cabinet that served as the study's bar and grabbed a bottle of scotch and a glass. A perfect Christmas with his kids. This was worth celebrating.
He sat on his desk chair and poured the amber liquid into the glass. The cut-glass pattern made everything sparkle, which was rather festive. Now all he had to do was get the kids on the plane. Everything else would be taken care of.
Happy as Cyrus was about giving his children the perfect Christmas, there was more to his feeling of jubilation. He smiled as he realized that the quirky holiday decorator had improved his mood. She seemed almost entirely too Christmassy to be real, but she also appeared to be someone you could count on, a quality that was lacking in this world.
He sipped his drink, feeling the fiery liquid slide down this throat. That had been a good negotiation.
And he was looking forward to the next one. As Nat had said, everyone wanted the perfect Christmas and it wasn't all that easy. An eleventh-hour version would, he was certain, encounter a few challenges, and he had a feeling he would enjoy maneuvering through them with Ms. Quinn. He felt a lot more confident after talking with her, like a weight had fallen off his back.
Leah walked into the studio, all well-tailored slacks and glossy hair. She definitely wasn't the slouchy sweater and Ugg boots type.
"The kids are packing," she said, a tinge of worry in her voice. "They sound really excited. Is she going to do it?"
"Of course," Cyrus replied. "Did you have any doubts?"
"Some," Leah exclaimed with a happy smile. "She was dead set against it. How did you convince her?"
"Money, flattery, and bottomless margaritas," he replied.
But that wasn't quite accurate. Ms. Quinn had given in when he'd mentioned his kids. That had been her weak spot. It made sense that a holiday specialist would be a sucker for kids. They were the point of her job, after all.
"How much do you know about this Nat Quinn, Leah?" He asked.
"She's fantastic," Leah answered, eyes shining. "You know Christmas is not my thing, so it takes quite a lot to wow me."
Cyrus nodded. Leah was Jewish, and she'd worked for some of the wealthiest families in Manhattan and London. She was notoriously hard to impress.
"But the Hagens hired me one week before Christmas and I was blown away. We drove up to the lodge and it looked amazing with a ten-foot-tall tree, garlands everywhere, and Mrs. Hagen's favorite vintage German decorations. Ms. Quinn even found the large old-fashioned bulbs that Mrs. Hagen wanted. She had an intact set and everything."
Cyrus suppressed a smile. At least he wasn't demanding rare Christmas lights and antique ornaments. Ms. Quinn was likely relieved about that.
"Christmas dinner was divine," Leah continued. "The main restaurant has an all-year-round holiday buffet with a citrus cranberry chutney that is out of this world. You can use it as a sandwich spread for the leftovers too."
His nanny's eyes grew dreamy as she described the food.
"And the pastry shop makes this amazing Black Forest cake with cherry Kirsch." Leah gave a deep sigh of longing. "It has so much alcohol you can't drive after you eat it, but it is delicious. Absolutely worth being housebound afterwards."
"So you want to go back for the food?" Cyrus asked, swirling the amber liquid in his glass.          
His question was greeted by an awkward silence.
Leah avoided his gaze. "Er, not exactly. The town is lovely and the people are, um, quite pleasant." She paused. "Particularly Ms. Quinn. She even gave us some Chinese food for Christmas Eve dinner, which was very thoughtful." Her eyes grew dreamy again. "The kung pao chicken was delicious. I hear the place closed though, which is a pity."
Cyrus smiled. "Let's hope Ms. Quinn can whip us something similar despite the time constraints. Given what we've given her to work with, we'll be lucky if she can find a Christmas tree."
"Oh, but I'm sure Noah's dad—"
Leah raised her hand to her mouth, eyes wide.
"Oh?" Cyrus raised a brow. "Who's Noah?"
A tinge of pink spread across her cheeks. "No one. I'll, er, go check on the kids now."
And she hurried out of the room.
Cyrus sipped his drink. Leah had been working for him for almost two years now, and she'd become part of the family. Yet he'd never seen her blush, not once.
Holiday Lake was going to be a lot more interesting than he'd expected.
He turned on his computer. A picture of his kids popped up on the screen. It was from the last time he'd taken Jack to the FDNY open house. His son stood in front of a fire truck grinning widely while his sister made bunny ears behind his head.
It was Cyrus’s favorite picture, partly because he'd made it to the field trip for a change, but mostly because Jack was wearing a t-shirt that read "Firefighters Like It Hot", seemingly oblivious to the double entendre.
Cyrus clicked on the Internet browser icon and waited for the program to load. An e-mail came as he waited. The sender was Nat Queen at TheChristmasQueen-dot-com and the subject line read "Contract for Immediate Signature." The words were punctuated with a dozen exclamation marks.
Ms. Quinn, it appeared, was quite efficient, a woman after his own heart.
When his browser window opened, he typed in "Nat Quinn Holiday Lake Minnesota." A surprisingly large number of sites popped up, most of them featuring the Christmas Queen motto and a mistletoe crown logo.
Ms. Quinn, it turned out, was a busy gal. She'd appeared on various morning shows, giving holiday decorating tips. She wrote a column on how to plan the perfect holiday. She had authored numerous magazine articles on virtually every challenge one could encounter during the holidays, and at least three of the articles dealt with gravy consistency. She had done sets for holiday movies.
No wonder she longed for a beach holiday. The poor woman must be exhausted. She even had a sponsorship agreement with a candle company. The ads boasted that her Citrus Cranberry Christmas Delight Candle was their all-time best-seller.
Well, there were worst things one could be remembered for.
He clicked on her website, TheChristmasQueen.com, and was immediately assaulted by loud music, The Carol of the Bells, if he was not mistaken.
It seemed the otherwise admirable Ms. Quinn had one serious character flaw: She was one of those people who had pop-up music on her website.
He muted the sound and scrolled down. There was another mistletoe crown logo, a recipe section, and several pictures of lavishly decorated houses.
Leah had not exaggerated. Ms. Quinn could put on a show. She'd even done a party with a real sleigh and live reindeer. He peered at the computer screen, jaw dropping in disbelief as he counted the animals. Eight reindeer, all suitably labeled. She'd done a holiday party with eight reindeer.
Maybe she could do Christmas in a day.
He kept browsing through her site. She had social media accounts with current pictures of the town. It had snowed recently and Holiday Lake could rightfully claim that it would be a white Christmas. The bakery that Leah loved was shaped like a Swiss chalet with twinkling lights and a giant Black Forest cake replica in front.
The Chinese restaurant, it turned out, was re-opening. Leah would no doubt be overjoyed. The Bavarian Brathaus sounded intriguing and the Holiday Lake Inn would be sponsoring a Christmas carol concert tomorrow night. The kids would enjoy that.
Holiday Lake seemed to have a fetish for measuring things. All their statistics were carefully noted on the various websites. They'd received sixteen inches of snow last week. The Holiday Lake Inn's all-you-can-eat turkey buffet had served seventeen gallons of citrus-cranberry chutney on December 26 of last year. Year-to-date, the tree farm had sold eight hundred and twenty-two trees.
He scrolled through the social media accounts and checked all the friends lists, but try as he might he could not find what he was looking for.
There were no clues as to Leah's mysterious Noah.
And there were no pictures of Nat Quinn. The Christmas Queen seemed surprisingly shy. No pictures of herself on her website. No selfies on her social media. Nothing.
But then he checked the images search tab and found that the local Christmas tree vendors had a picture of her. The image was blurry, so all he could make out was a slender woman standing next to an enormous Christmas tree, but clicking on the picture took him to the tree seller's website.
And there she was. Nat Quinn had filmed a television segment with Northstar Tree Farm, which had aired on the Minneapolis public television station. The tree farm had the video on its website.
He clicked play and sat back to watch.
Nat Quinn was a tall woman with bright red hair, green eyes, and a loud cheerful laugh. She knew more than any human being should about decorative conifers, and she could make a Christmas wreath in five minutes flat. She liked Balsam firs because they looked shaggy and natural, but she admired the Fraser fir's longevity. She wielded a chainsaw like a pro and she did not like artificial trees. As far as she was concerned, they were an abomination in the eyes of the Lord. She owned thirty-seven ugly Christmas sweaters and her favorite featured an unhappy-looking antlered Chihuahua. And she was single.
Cyrus found himself smiling. Nat Quinn was adorable.
She was also dead serious about Christmas.
She was the perfect choice for this job. Even the single part. Not that he cared, of course, not personally. It just left her free to concentrate on the job.
That was the important consideration here, the job.
But there was something. He scrolled up. He could swear he'd seen—
He laughed as he reached the top of the website. There it was in all its glory—The Northstar Tree Farm's Christmas tree counter.
And it read "zero."
There were no trees left. Zero balsams. Zero Frasers.
Nada.
He was still laughing as he pulled up Nat's email, opened the contract, and affixed his electronic signature.
He couldn't wait to see what the Christmas Queen would do.



About the Author:

Ani Gonzalez is a USA Today bestselling author of holiday-themed romantic comedy and cozy mystery stories set in Banshee Creek, Virginia (The Most Haunted Town in the USA!) and Holiday Lake, Minnesota (Where Every Day is Christmas!). Her books feature feisty, irrepressible heroines dealing with holiday mayhem, paranormal critters (ghosts, cryptids, pagan gods...the sky's the limit) and mysteries. They find love and laughter (and sometimes corpses) along the way, and readers get to follow them every step.







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The Wish of Xmas Present by N.D.Jones 2018 Holiday Extravaganza Book Tour & Giveaway


The Wish of Xmas Present Emoji Love
Dr. Malcolm Styles and Dr. Sky Ellis are the hero and heroine in The Perks of Higher Ed and The Wish of Xmas Present, the first two books in the Styles of Love contemporary romance trilogy. One of their relationship trademarks is their exchange of fun text messages and silly emojis. Malcolm started the trend, using both to get to know Sky and to test the romance waters between them.
He pulled his cell phone from his pants pocket and sent Sky an emoji with a pink bow on her head, bright-red heart-shaped lips pursed for a kiss, long curling lashes, sparkling blue eyes, and huge b*****s. It wasn’t totally tasteless. The emoji did wear a pink bra to cover nonexistent n******s.

Sky, conservative but a closet prankster with a wicked sense of humor, is more than capable of matching Malcolm.

His phone dinged with a text message notification almost immediately. His lady’s feminism never disappointed, neither did her lack of romanticism.
You’re shameless, Dr. Styles. Her b*****s are nearly as big as her head.
She ended her message with an orange President’s Day emoji of Donald Trump holding a cell phone and tweeting: #notfakenews #mydayoff.
President’s Day? It’s September. At least send me a Hispanic Heritage Month emoji.

When Christmas is upon them, Malcolm knows the right text message to send his Christmas bell.

The cell phone in her hand buzzed. Bringing the screen to life, Sky hit the message icon and read the text.
Your sleigh awaits. Meet me in the foyer.
Above Malcolm’s message was an image of a red-nosed reindeer emoji.

Contemporary romance is a great opportunity to include all kinds of popular culture into a novel. Texting and emojis are two fun inclusions to this holiday-themed novel.

Sky has compiled some of her favorite Christmas emojis for Malcolm she’d like to share. She kept her choices PG-13. If you want to know which emojis made it to Sky’s Naughty But Nice list, you’ll have to ask Malcolm.

What’s your favorite Christmas emoji?





The Wish of Xmas Present
The Styles of Love
Book Two
N.D. Jones

Genre: Contemporary Romance/Holiday Romance

Publisher: Kuumba Publishing

Date of Publication: December 21, 2018



ISBN: 9781732556751
ASIN: B07HLHN9H8

Number of pages: 292
Word Count: 80k

Cover Artist: Limabean Designs

Tagline: The greatest gift of all is the love we share with each other…

Book Description:

As love blooms and familial bonds are forged, the spirit of the season welcomes us home and offers us a chance to dream. Dr. Malcolm Styles and Dr. Sky Ellis’s whirlwind office romance, a sexy perk of higher ed, has swept them off their feet. Now that the winds of change have settled, Malcolm and Sky find, as the Christmas holiday approaches, a chance to make a deeper connection.

For Malcolm, he has only one wish for the winter holiday of goodwill, mistletoe, and decorations. Will his wish make it to Santa’s list, granting Malcolm a joyful Noel, or will Jack Frost smother his cheer in a blizzard of disappointment?

As Malcolm and Sky traverse the landscape of romance and love, they find themselves on a journey of self-discovery and bonding. For ‘tis the season of caring and with it comes the blessings of family, hope, and faith.

Amazon     Kobo      BN     iBooks

Book Trailer: https://youtu.be/VLPEZ8pvV5s




About the Author:

N. D. Jones is a USA Today bestselling author who lives in Maryland with her husband and two children. She is a dedicated educator, committed to equitable and excellent education for all students. N.D. has served in the role as teacher, department chair, and professional development teacher specialist, supporting the learning of students and the professional growth of teachers.

N.D. is the founder of Kuumba Publishing, an art, audiobook, eBook, and paperback company. Kuumba Publishing is a forum for creativity, with a special commitment to promoting and encouraging creative works of authors and artists of African descent. Her teenage daughter created the image design for Kuumba Publishing, while her son has written a role playing game original character bio for a new paranormal romance series--making Kuumba Publishing a true family affair.

A desire to see more novels with positive, sexy, and three-dimensional African American characters as soul mates, friends, and lovers, inspired the author to take on the challenge of penning such romantic reads. She is the author of two paranormal romance series: Winged Warriors and Death and Destiny. She's also embarked on a science fiction romance series, Forever Yours. N.D. likes to read historical and paranormal romance novels, as well as comics and manga.





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The Young Adult Writer's Journey by Elizabeth Fortin-Hinds and Janet Schrader-Post Book Tour and Giveaway


The Young Adult Writer’s Journey
Elizabeth Fortin-Hinds and Janet Schrader-Post

Genre: Nonfiction Reference

Publisher: Tell-Tale Publishing Group

Date of Publication: November 23, 3018

ISBN:  978-1-944056-98-8
ASIN: B07K3VZ2ZK,

Number of pages: 232
Word Count: 60,000

Tagline: An Encyclopedia for YA Writers

Book Description:

Finally, an all-inclusive book on young adult fiction must-do, don’t do and how-to. If you want to write a young adult novel, you need to read this book first. Coauthored by an award-winning YA author and an acquisitions editor, both experts on kids and what they like to read, this encyclopedia contains all you need to start or improve a career as a YA fiction author.

From an examination of the market, genre and its sub-genres, to mechanics and the business, everything is at your fingertips. This amazing writer’s resource is written in a relaxed and interesting style, with plenty of contemporary references and examples for clear understanding and easier application.


  

Praise:

"The Young Adult Writer's Journey is a 'Must Have' at your fingertip reference for anyone who writes (or wants to write) for or about kids. Engaging text with topical and thought-provoking insights leading from idea to submission . . . and beyond to populate a story with believable characters young readers can relate to."—Nancy Gideon, Award-Winning author of the By Moonlight series

“The trouble with “how to” books on creativity is that they usurp creativity. Not so with this very insightful guide for YA writing. If it doesn’t become a standard or even a classic among reference books, it will be an oversight. Janet Schrader-Post and Elizabeth Fortin-Hinds have all the marinated smarts and credentialed experience to pull this off, and they do! No dictated wisdom from on high here, no grafted creativity, THE YOUNG ADULT WRITER’S JOURNEY is accessible, motivational and a clear map that leaves plenty of room to discover for anyone wanting to explore their creative side.”-Thomas Sullivan, Pulitzer-nominated author of THE PHASES OF HARRY MOON


Excerpt:

When you talk about world-building, many writers think you’re talking about fantasy lands like Narnia, Westeros, Panam or Middle Earth. For most teens, school is their world. What kind of home life they have is their world and these worlds need to be just as complicated as Narnia. Well-developed teen worlds like Hogwarts, North Shore High School, home of the Mean Girls, Rydell High School of Grease, and Panem of Hunger Games are so well-developed they seem real, and you remember them as though they were a place you visited.

To create a real world for teens in our times, you really need to know them: what they do every day, what they like, what motivates them, the environment in high schools and many other details. Home life for kids is very different from twenty or even ten years ago. It takes two incomes now to support a growing family or to succeed, so both parents most likely work. This leaves kids as young as nine or ten at home alone for long periods of time (or even younger, unfortunately). The enemy of these parents is the school holiday, and it seem like there’s more than ever. These parents have no idea what to do with their children. Many can’t afford childcare, so the kids are home alone. It’s a thing you must think about when writing for them.

Children come from all levels of society. Poor kids will view the world through different eyes than kids who have well-off parents. Kids living with a single parent might have a different view of the world as well as different social structures. The kids with single parents or working parents might have to go hungry on weekends, on school holidays and especially during the summer. It’s hard to think about, but true. There are teenagers out there who eat breakfast and lunch at school and their families provide dinner. Sometimes all they get is their school meals some days. When school is out, they scavenge and fend for themselves or they don’t eat.



About the Authors:

Elizabeth Fortin-Hinds knows kids well. She spent decades teaching teens and adults to write and improve their reading skills. As a literacy expert and certified coach, she helped both teachers from elementary to secondary and preservice graduate students learn to improve reading and writing instruction. She has taught at both the secondary and graduate level, everything from rhetoric, essays, and thesis statements, to poetry, short stories, and how to write a novel. She has learned to use both sides of her brain simultaneously, but enjoys the creative side the most, learning to play piano, draw and paint, and find time for her own writing since retiring from her “day” jobs. 

A “true believer” in Joseph Campbell’s The Hero with a Thousand Faces, mythic structures, she uses that lens when considering manuscripts for Tell-Tale Publishing Group, a company she founded with some friends from her critique group a decade ago.

Daughter of a Colonel, Janet lived the military life until she got out of high school. She lived in Hawaii and worked as a polo groom for fifteen years, then moved to Florida where she became a reporter. For ten years she covered kids in high school and middle school. Kids as athletes, kids doing amazing things no matter how hard their circumstances. It impressed her, and it awed her. “How wonderful teens are. They have spirit and courage in the face of the roughest time of their lives. High school is a war zone. Between dodging bullies, school work and after school activities, teens nowadays have a lot on their plate. I wrote stories about them and I photographed them. My goal was to see every kid in their local newspaper before they graduated.”

Janet love kids and horses, and she paints and writes. Now she lives in the swampland of Florida with too many dogs and her fifteen-year-old granddaughter. She started to write young adult fiction with the help of her son, Gabe Thompson, who teaches middle school. Together they have written a number of award-winning YA novels in both science fiction and fantasy.











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Sunday, December 16, 2018

The Mortician's Daughter by C.C, Hunter Book Tour & Giveaway


The Mortician's Daughter:
One Foot in the Grave
by C.C. Hunter
Genre: Paranormal Romance

The first exciting novel in a brand-new series from New York Times bestselling author C. C. Hunter!


Her dad’s job is with the dead . . . and he’s bringing his work home with him.

Once again, seventeen-year-old Riley Smith is the new kid in school and her dad’s career has her back to being dubbed a freak. Truth is, she’s a much bigger freak than her classmates think. The only company she keeps these days is the dead who follow Dad home from work. She can see them. She can speak to them. And Fate seems to think she can help them solve their last problems so that they can move on to the other side. Which is odd, because with the loss of her mother and her father’s alcoholism, she’s got enough problems of her own.

But nothing could prepare her for the next tormented young spirit who darkens Riley’s door. The young woman’s death wasn’t the accident everyone believes. Soon Riley finds herself face-to-face with the killer and her only protection comes in the form of another spirit, Hayden, a boy her age with a heart-melting smile and understanding eyes that make her feel safe. If she can escape becoming the killer’s next victim, Riley knows she’ll have to help Hayden move on too, but what if she can’t let him go?

For thrills, chills, romance and laughter, buy The Mortician’s Daughter: One Foot in the Gravetoday.


Praise for C. C. Hunter’s Shadow Falls series:

C. C. Hunter has an amazing talent to make you laugh, cry, and laugh again all in the same chapter!” —Crossroad Review

Jam-packed with action and romance . . . Hunter’s lifelike characters and paranormal creatures populate a plot that will keep you guessing till the very end. A perfect mesh of mystery, thriller, and romance.” —Romantic Times on Taken at Dusk







The Mortician's Daughter:
Two Feet Under 

Riley has accepted that her special gift is to help dead people with their unfinished business.  But she never thought she’d be tasked with helping the spirit of a convicted criminal who died in prison.  He may lead her on the scariest mission yet, but helping him could mean saving the life of a child.  The convict’s daughter needs a liver transplant and the one person who could still be a match is his brother…who also happens to be a gang leader.


Hayden’s not happy that Riley’s discovered who he is and is seeing him sick and unconscious in his hospital bed.  This feels like as good a time as ever to cross over and put all of them out of their misery….but Riley is in danger.  She’s visiting some of the most dangerous spots and confronting some of the creepiest low-lifes in town.  For her, he’ll need to regain his strength and fight to keep her safe.

But dealing with other people’s problems still can’t keep Riley from her own.  Her dad’s drinking has gotten worse.  And she’ll soon learn it’s because he’s been keeping a huge, horrible secret that will change everything she believes about her family and her mother’s death.




    C.C. Hunter is the New York Times bestselling author of over thirty-five books, including her wildly popular Shadow Falls and Shadow Falls: After Dark series. In addition to winning numerous awards and rave reviews for her novels, C.C. is also a photojournalist, motivational speaker, and writing coach. In February 2018, Wednesday Books will publish her contemporary young adult and hardcover debut, This Heart of Mine. And the first book of her new paranormal young adult series, The Mortician's Daughter: One Foot in the Grave will release on October 31st 2017. C. C. currently resides in Texas with her husband, junkyard dog, Lady, and whatever wild creatures that meander out from woods surrounding home.



Follow the tour HERE for exclusive content and a giveaway!








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