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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.



{December 13, 2009}   O.K,. so it’s been a while…

Yeah, it’s been a while since I was last here with anything personal.  Thanksgiving and Christmas have kept me fairly busy, but mostly I was away on family emergencies.

My older sister, Shelley, nearly died from the H1N1.  She spent some time in ICU on a ventilator struggling for her life.  That was 2 weeks ago.  She’s home, but still dealing with health issues, which I pray end very soon so that she is well for Christmas.  She’s got a new grandson, and I want her to be healthy so she can experience this first Christmas with him.

Having her survive is a miracle, and I am eternally thankful for answered prayers and a healing touch from God.

Yesterday, my younger sister and her girls–and their friends–came for a visit.  We spent the day doing the Christmas baking.  Several hundred cookies later, we collapsed exhausted all around the living room to watch a holiday movie.  I love having family at my home.  It’s just such a blessing to be surrounded by people you love, knowing they love you back!

I’ve been scouring the ‘net for items I’ve missed regarding my work…reviews and such…which I’ll be posting throughout the week.

Another year has come and practically gone.  2010 will be here before we know it.  I’m hopeful for fresh beginnings on some works I have in progress.  I’m trying to get book one in a new series revised and completed and submitted to a publisher.  I have a couple short fiction pieces I want to submit to Eternal Press, too.  I keep saying I’m waiting for things to slow down, but I can’t wait on that…need to embrace the new year with gusto!

Happy Sunday!



{November 13, 2009}   New book video!

Here’s the new video for my November release That Taste of Orange! Let me know what you think!



{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!



{November 7, 2009}   It’s Release Day!!

Yay! My new holiday-themed release That Taste of Orange comes out TODAY!!!! Eternal Press releases my second short fiction piece with them this year. I’m very excited–in case you really can’t tell–and am actually the first one at the Eternal Press Launch Party! I was afraid I was late, and I’m the only one there. Please stop by the Launch Party and join me! You’ll meet all the other Eternal Press authors with new releases today. There’s a fine line up, too, so everyone should find something there to enjoy!

TTOO.VS The Blurb:

Can the taste of orange rekindle their passion?

If ever two people were perfectly suited for each other, it’s Sabrina and Chas. Both pastry chefs. Both excellent cooks. And both love the taste of orange. But the Christmas season has been a very 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 needs 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?

The Excerpt:

She got up and went downstairs, wondering where Chas was. As she stood in the kitchen doorway, she smiled. He was wearing the bottoms to a pair of pajamas she bought him last year. They had candy canes all over them. His dark brown hair—which reminded her of dark chocolate when wet—was damp and a crescent-shaped section hung over his forehead. It was clear that he’d taken a shower while she napped. She wondered how he’d been in their bedroom without her knowing. Used to be, she could just sense when he was around her.

His chest was bare save for the bib apron he wore. In the front pocket of the apron were a hand towel and a potholder. Tucked into the waistband of his pants was another hand towel. On the counter were several small glass bowls containing various ingredients circling a large mixing bowl, a carton of eggs, and the bottle of Amade ChocOrange liqueur. He picked up a wooden spoon, twirling it like a drummer would a stick, before using it to mix whatever was in the bowl. She watched him, unable to take her eyes off his biceps…watching them pump up and down as he reached for the little glass bowls one at a time, dumping ingredients into the mixing bowl. Exchanging the wooden spoon for a stainless steel whisk, he hummed as he expertly whipped the chocolate-orange velvet cream to a light, delicate fluff.

He grabbed a teaspoon from the drawer, which he dipped into the cream. Her eyes followed the spoon to his mouth, eagerly watching his tongue as he licked the remains of the cream off the stainless steel. Her body heated up. She really wanted to go in there, rip off the bib apron, and smear his chest with that cream.

The Live Chat:

Join all the Eternal Press authors with new releases for November in a live chat this evening! Come on over!



{October 21, 2009}   Cover Corner: Roxanne Rhoads

Story strumpet, tome loving tart, eccentric night owl…these are all words that can describe freelance writer and erotic romance author Roxanne Rhoads. Roxanne is a fellow Eternal Press author that the Write Time & Place is very happy to welcome to this week’s Cover Corner. Roxanne’s participating a virtual book tour for her October 7th release, Eternal Desire, which is why Cover Corner is appearing on Wednesday this week as opposed to it’s normal Tuesday. Please set a spell and read more about her new release, watch a video, and get to know Roxanne a bit! When you’ve scrolled to the bottom of this showcase, leave her a comment and let her know you’ve been here! Thanx so much … ~Valerie

Blurb:

Misty Overgrown CemetaryLiz Beth, a paranormal researcher, is haunted by the seductive vampire, Quillon, who may or may not be real. She arrives in New Orleans the week of Halloween to search for the elusive vampire of her dreams and instead encounters a handsome stranger, Christien, with whom she begins a passionate affair with.

Soon she is torn between her dream lover and a flesh and blood man, both of whom are a mystery to her. The closer it gets to Halloween the wilder things become. LizBeth gets closer to the truth about Quillon while Christien has her under his own spell.

Will all be revealed at the Vampyre Ball or will the masks stay in place?

In New Orleans at Halloween anything is possible.

Excerpt:

The ball was a grand affair, full of lavish and elaborate vampires of all types. Some were modern or Goth, and others were stylishly dressed in period costumes. Everywhere I looked, there was white flesh and sharp fangs though they all seemed to be fake. I retreated to a restroom to clean up and to do a better job of fixing my makeup. I also put in my fangs.

I left the restroom and, as I was walking by the coat check room, I felt a strange tingle on the back of my neck. Suddenly, an arm reached out and pulled me in.

I figured it was Christien again, but it wasn’t. A masked man stood only inches away. His face was almost completely hidden. All I could see were his full, sensual lips curving into a seductive smile. I noticed the cross dangling from his neck. It was my cross, the one the stranger took from me in the alley. Fear and fire coursed through my body. My knees became weak. He grabbed me before I hit the ground. His scent intoxicated me. I felt like I was floating.

“You look so enchanting tonight, Liz Beth, like a vampire bride. And you smell so wonderful—a mix of cinnamon and passion. You make me want you so.”

I was powerless to do anything as he slid his hand under my dress. It was just like my dream.

To read another excerpt

Bio:

When not fulfilling one the many roles being a wife and mother of three require, Roxanne’s world revolves around words…reading them, writing them, editing them, and talking about them. In addition to writing her own stories she loves to read and review what others write. She operates a book review site, Fang-tastic Books, dedicated to her favorite type of book- anything paranormal. Her favorite genres are paranormal romance and urban fantasy but she’ll read just about anything featuring vampires, ghosts, witches and whatnot.

Roxanne writes everything from articles to web content as a freelance writer and poet. Her erotic and romance stories and poems have appeared in Playgirl Magazine, several print anthologies, in ebooks and on numerous Websites.

When not reading or writing Roxanne loves to hang out with her family, craft, garden and search for unique vintage finds.

Roxanne’s Realm

Fang-tastic Books

Buy The E-Book!

Buy The Paperback!



{October 11, 2009}   Woot! Woot!

I don’t know when it happened, but it happened!  And I’m very excited about it.

My Eternal Press book page for That Taste of Orange is up and active.  You can find it here!  Yay!

The excerpt and blurb are there, too.  I just love the cover!  Make sure you pop on over and read all about my November 7th release!  Can’t wait for the launch party in November, either.

I’m excited for many reasons.  One: this is my last release of 2009 <sigh>  Yes, I’m sighing with relief!  This has been a jam-packed year for me with new releases, and I’ve not had a chance to finish any of my other projects.  Two: this is my last release of 2009 <wistful sigh>  As busy as it’s been–and it’s been busy–I’ve enjoyed each and every new release from start to finish.  2009 brought me to Eternal Press and to Bookstrand, and the experiences have been wonderful.  I’m enjoying getting to know everyone at each place all while I keep active on the Asylett Press authors’ loop as well.  I almost hate to see the 2009 release madness end!  Three: That Taste of Orange is one of my favorite short fiction pieces.  I truly enjoyed writing the story, creating the characters–who are fabulous, by the way–and resolving the conflict between them in a somewhat steamy way (but not so steamy some of my regulars would not want to read this terrific story).  Four: have I mentioned that cover?  Great covers always get me revved up for a release, and this is a great cover.

So please join me in my excitement, and get ready for my November 7th release with me!  Leave me a comment after you’ve had a chance to read the blurb and the excerpt and give me your thoughts.  Email’s always another option, too!  I love getting your emails so keep them coming!

Until next time…Happy writing!

Valerie



et cetera