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This review for That Taste of Orange appeared on December 17, 2009 on Dark Diva Reviews.  I’ve been waiting for a review by this site ever since my first release, Her Last, came out in July ’09.  Her Last–not being a romance–did not qualify for a review from this popular review site.  😦  But I got my wish when my Christmas-themed romance was released.  🙂

So…here it is!

Kathy’s Review: This Christmas tale goes a long way to dispelling the myth that Christmas is always a time of joyful celebration. What happens when a couple, married a number of years, has let other concerns take over their lives?

This is the basis behind Sabrina and Chas’s story. Valerie J. Patterson has, in That Taste of Orange, given us a timely reminder that we need to consciously appreciate what we have and the people in our lives. And that a marriage, regardless of the love between the couple, needs a lot of TLC, especially when stress levels are high. This is a lesson that both Bri and Chas have to learn and we are treated to a wonderful story about the magic of love, family and Christmas.

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I am always amazed at what I’ll find on the ‘Net if I look long enough!  I was scouring the ‘Net looking for reviews of That Taste of Orange to continue posting them here when I found a link for ny.insiderfood.com with my title beside it.  Curious as to why a New York City food website would be interested in my book, I clicked the link.  To my surprise and delight there beside a list of foods that are orange, have orange in them, or are flavored orange was the cover to my book along with a buy link!  How cool is that?

Anyway, without further delay, here is the third review for That Taste of Orange, which appeared on The Pen and Muse on December 7, 2009.

Rating: 4 stars

Reviewed by Denisse Alicea

What I liked: What more could you want with a Christmas story! Ms. Patterson, gets it right with her exceptional story. A story of love. Something we all need during the holidays.

It’s short and sweet and to the point…and I love it!  😀



{January 1, 2010}   Happy 2010!!

Howdy!  Happy 2010 to everyone!  It’s a new year already, and it’s time I get back to thinking about writing.  The holiday season always takes me away from my writing schedule.  This year it had a lot of help with some crises.  First, I nearly lost my sister (there’s a post here all about her battle).  She’s regaining her health, but it is taking a long time, which is what she was told to expect.  Second, I have a very dear aunt–my dad’s sister–and she had her own health emergency.  She went in for a routine biopsy and when they took her into the operating room, her heart went bonkers!  Her heart beat decided to accelerate to 180 beats per minute and wouldn’t slow down.  Immediately, they took her down to the cardiac intensive care unit where they literally flatlined her, waited a few seconds, and restarted her heart.  She spent two more days in the hospital and was sent home.  We’re a) very glad she’s still with us and b) hoping the problem can be stabilized with meds instead of a pacemaker.  Lastly, I had my own bout of illness.  A teenie tiny minor bout–just to put it in perspective with everything else.  I got an infection in my jaw.  Who knew that could happen?  Not me.  The entire left side of my face was in pain and I couldn’t eat–not that that’s necessarily a bad thing!–but the sensitivity was not good at all.  Once they cleared up the infection, I went in for the dreaded root canal!  Oh well, I can eat and talk and drink and touch the left side of my face again so all is definitely well!

So there you have it…the holiday season of 2009 was packed with more than just celebrations.  And all of it lent itself to tossing out my writing schedule completely.

I don’t make new year resolutions.  Why make a promise to yourself you know you can’t/won’t keep?  Isn’t that setting yourself up for additional disappointment–this time doled out by yourself to yourself?  No thank you!

I have a writing friend–Jay–who’s put it all in plain words for me.  In a recent email he said–and I quote–“We both know that after the new year you need to get back to it!”  He’s right, of course.  I do need to get back to it.

I have a lot to be thankful for from 2009:

  1. I had 4 releases…two novels and 2 shorts, all of which were released in e-format as well as paperback.

  2. I still have a sister and an aunt.

  3. I have my health.

  4. I have my husband.

  5. I have my family.

  6. I received rave professional reviews on all of my releases.

  7. I received 1 less than stellar, but still positive review on one of my releases.

  8. I took a couple fabulous trips this year, which aided in building wonderful memories.

See?  I have a lot to be thankful for…and I could have listed many more, but I figured mostly you all would be interested in the writing blessings, with a few personal blessings thrown in.  With regards to bullet no. 2, I have my very own personal miracles for which I will be eternally grateful.

Okay, so I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday season.  May your Christmas have been blessed with love and great joy.  May 2010 be the best of the best and loaded with blessings of all kinds.

Until next time…

Valerie



I’m a little late in getting the reviews added here, but stick with me. I’m getting them up now this week. That said, here’s the second official review for my November Eternal Press release: That Taste of Orange.

Night Owl Reviews‘ Silvermage made That Taste of Orange a Reviewer Top Pick! It scored 4.5 stars out of 5! The review appeared on November 23, 2009.

The review:

Sabrina and Chas Montgomery are pastry chefs and have been married for four years. A while back they opened up Sabrina’s Sweet Sensations, a specialty dessert shop. They both enjoy chocolate and orange together and even have a chocolate orange cake. But not everything is sweet at the shop. They have lately been fighting. Christmastime is not turning out to be as inspiring as it should be.

They are working on their marriage, but are just so tired from all the long hours. After a good family get together and being passionate again will these two turn things around? Will Chas’s angel be the perfect gift?

I enjoyed That Taste of Orange and the characters. The relationship between Chas and Sabrina was touching and their romantic gestures inspiring. It was an enjoyable, feel good story. The family and Christmas aspects were just the icing on the cake. And the food references had me salivating and craving desert.



{November 10, 2009}   2009’s Last Release…

Hi Everyone!  I’m all rested from this weekend’s festivities.  I attended my second Eternal Press launch party and–believe it or not–this one was even more fun that the last (my first)!  No kidding.  It was a blast!!!!

In October Eternal Press instituted a new feature:  Author Live Chat, which takes place every launch day now.  I admit, I was a little apprehensive about the live chat because my last foray into hosting a live chat met with less than stellar results.  I had 4 chatters!  Oh well.  I did say it was my first *and* I hadn’t done my homework like promoting it or inviting folks.  So it’s my own fault that the turn out was small.

So, when the time rolled around for me to attend the launch day live chat, I went with a bit of trepidation.  All the worrying was for naught!  It was well attended and I had a blast.  I shared my time with fellow author J. Rose Allister.  She’s the perfect partner for a live chat.  She’s got a wonderful sense of humor and shared some great excerpts from her new release Their Secret Paradise.

If you’re ever around on the 7th of the month, stop by the Eternal Press website and take part in the Author Live Chat!  You won’t regret it!

Okay…my final release of 2009 is That Taste of Orange.  While I was involved in the Author Live Chat, Seriously Reviewed showed up and announced she’d just posted a review of my release to her site.  Here’s the review:

There are times in most marriages when we let life get in the way of the relationship. Times we worry about the little things instead of what should be more important. This tasty little treat is brimming with a couple in love who have hit the end of their rope. Stressed out by a business that is booming, their love seems to have fallen by the way side. Fortunately a little Holiday spirit might be just the thing to put them back in the spirit of love.

I have read several works by this author and have to admit that I keep my eyes peeled for anything with her name on it. Congrats on another release Ms Patterson. Here is wishing you many more 🙂

To read the entire write-up click here.

Here’s a little excerpt to tempt you into buying the book!  😛  😛

“We have an order for an orange fondant cake with a layer of chocolate-orange velvet cream in the center. I need a bottle of orange extract from the Food Depot and a bottle of Amade ChocOrange liqueur from the Wine & Spirits shop.”

“There’s a bottle of Amade in the pantry.”

“No, I used the last of that several weeks ago.”

“For what? We haven’t had an order for that cake in a couple months.”

“I used it for your birthday cake, Sabrina.”

How had she forgotten that? It was the nicest thing he’d done for her in eons. “I’m sorry. I wasn’t thinking.”

Chas was silent so long she was certain he was either counting to ten to avoid slamming back at her or he was gathering steam so he could let her have it. He surprised her.

“I thought it was an unforgettable cake, Bri. Remember what we did with the icing?”

Sabrina laughed. “That’s something I don’t think I’ll ever forget. We didn’t leave the bedroom all weekend.”

A deep rumble greeted her as a response. “Lucky for me your birthday was on a Friday.”

“Yeah, and do you remember talking to Pastor John about why we were late for Sunday school?”

“I do. I also remember that his lesson that morning was about the importance of the physical side of marriage.”

“And I recall you bringing that up once we got home, too.”

He laughed. “It worked, didn’t it? We spent the rest of the day proving that lesson.”

“That was a very good cake.”

“It led to a lot of good, uh, things.”

That Taste of Orange…available now!



Well, it looks like That Taste of Orange has a cover!  Yay!  Amanda Kelsey is the cover artist, and she did another fantastic job!  Take a look and decide for yourself:

ThatTasteofOrange_200x300_72dpi

Share your thoughts on the cover…leave me a comment.  Thanks! … ~Valerie

That Taste of Orange hits the shelves November 7th!  It’s being released by Eternal Press, the very same publisher that released Her Last in July 2009!

Here’s the book’s blurb:

If ever two people were perfectly suited for each other, it’s Sabrina and Chas Montgomery. Both pastry chefs. Both excellent cooks. And both love the taste of orange. But the Christmas season has been a busy time at their pastry shop, and they’re both feeling the weight of the long hours, the lack of personal time, and the stress of the holidays.

Sabrina wants nothing more for Christmas than to regain the wonderful relationship she once had with her husband. The very traits that drew her to him in the beginning are now driving her crazy. Chas loves his wife, but he’s overworked and wants some down time. When he suggests they need time apart—and neglects to tell her where he was one evening—Sabrina thinks the worst.

Will the end of the holidays signal the end of their union? Or can one juicy little orange bring them back where they belong?

I’ll post an excerpt next week!  Thanks for stopping by … and as always, leave me a comment or drop me a line.



et cetera