‘Christmas On The Run’ Released Today!

Christmas on the Run released today! Pick up your copy from Amazon and Smashwords today!

Christmas on the Run by Louise BehielWhen Ramon Ramirez is found not guilty of first degree murder, Adelina Ramirez grabs their six year old daughter and leaves Atlanta, determined to keep him from taking Sadie to Brazil and keeping her there.

A bad snow storm on an almost-deserted road in Montana forces Lina to stay in Bandit Creek for Christmas. New friend Todd Black is bound to help the quiet woman and her child. He knows there’s more to her story than she’s saying, but it’s none of his business.

In the midst of Christmas preparations and a record snow storm, Ramon tracks her down. He doesn’t care about Lina but he wants his daughter and he’s going to take her.

With Todd at her side, Lina is forced to confront her worst fears. Together, they will face Ramon and forge a new future – a gift from her Christmas on the Run.

Read the Excerpt

‘Up the Creek Without A Saddle’ Released Today!

Up the Creek Without A Saddle released today! Pick up your copy from Amazon and Smashwords today!

It was a series of misunderstandings that lead Lily to this place of deceit. She thought she was all by herself when she gave in to a temper tantrum in the middle of a field of cattle near Bandit Creek, Montana. By the time she overcame the shock of finding an insanely handsome man was watching her, she found herself lying without ever intending to.

Now this kind man had come to believe she was poor and in desperate need of help, when in reality she could easily purchase the entire town of Bandit Creek with the money readily available in her chequing account. It was her family’s enormous wealth that had prompted Lily to head out west in the first place, to take some time away and decide if she really wanted to take her place in the corporation like everyone expected. Leaving all signs of her wealth behind her, Lily was doing just fine…until she stumbled into Jayce.

Not only were his disarming looks leaving Lily to blush like a schoolgirl, she quickly realized her family’s great fortune came at a cost to farm families just like his. And now she found herself creating an entire fabrication so that he wouldn’t discover she was actually his enemy. But it became more and more pressing to tell Jayce the truth, if Lily wanted the chance to get to know him better. Bracing herself, Lily finally came clean with the truth of her background. But she was unprepared for the long-held secret that Jayce had of his own.

Click here to read an excerpt.

‘Thief of Hearts’ Released Today!

Thief of Hearts released today! Pick up your copy from Amazon today!

Trying desperately to escape an abusive husband, Melissa Stacey drives until she reaches the town of Bandit Creek. She doesn’t know why she has stopped here, but as she sits looking at Lost Lake, she realizes that she too is lost. She has no family, no friends and no hope of ever escaping her cruel husband. Her hopelessness drives her to make a rash decision.

After being warned by Bandit Creek’s town drunk/prophet, depending on who you spoke to, Gabriel Waters rushed to save her. He didn’t know who she was but Old Jack told him he had to hurry or he’d be too late. He arrives at the shores of Lost Lake in time to see a woman disappear below the surface.

What happens next is a story of how two people, brought together by tragedy and fear, can find each other and solace in the discovery of true love. Love that can be found everywhere, even in Bandit Creek. After all everything happens in Bandit Creek.

Click here to read an excerpt.

Carla Interviews CJ Carmichael about ‘The Gift’

Hi, I’m Carla Roma and welcome to Bandit Creek, a small town with a mountain of secrets. It’s no secret that I love mountains and when I was last in the Rocky Mountains of Alberta, I was about to hike the beautiful Larch Valley when I came across romance novelist C.J. Carmichael. Before I could whip out my copy of “Perfect Partners” (which I always carry with me) for an autograph, CJ was warning me that a grizzly momma and her cubs were ahead on the trail and I’d better turn back. CJ, I guess you saved my life that day.

CJ: Not at all Carla. Grizzly bears rarely attack hikers. But it’s better to give them a wide berth if possible. Especially when they have young ones to protect. You know how ornery mothers can get if they think their babies are in danger.

Carla: Hm, I think you’ve just maneuvered our conversation to the subject of the short story you wrote for Bandit Creek.

CJ: That wasn’t really my intention, but you’re right. The maternal instinct is a central theme of THE GIFT. My main character, Amy Gold, has loads of it. That’s part of the reason she makes such an excellent kindergarten teacher. Her house is full of art projects and gifts her students have given her over the years.

Carla: She sounds like a real sweetie. But maybe a little dull, too?

CJ: Actually, she’s pretty complicated, which makes her an interesting character. Also, she has a secret she’s been keeping from her boyfriend, Gray Cassidy. He’s a rancher and part-time deputy in Bandit Creek. Amy never expected their relationship to be a serious one, but now that it’s turning out that way, her big secret is causing a serious problem.

Carla: Your tag line for THE GIFT is: “when is the wrong thing, the right thing to do?” This has to be a trick question, right? I mean, it’s never right to do the wrong thing.

CJ:  I have to disagree. Real life is full of challenging dilemmas where no right answer is obvious. I always feel these moral dilemmas make for the most interesting fiction. Take the subject of euthanasia for instance. I sure understand the arguments for not making this legal. The potential for abuse is really scary. On the other hand, if I was suffering terribly, with no hope of recovery, I’d be pretty grateful if someone released me from my pain. Then again, if I were actually in this situation, maybe I’d feel differently. This is what I mean by no right or wrong answers. I could probably argue this topic (with myself!) for a long time without landing on the “right” answer.

Carla:  So THE GIFT is a story about euthanasia?

CJ: No! That was just an example.

Carla: So what is the moral dilemma your characters face in THE GIFT?

CJ: I don’t want to give away too much. Let’s just say that Amanda finds herself in a situation where the law requires her to do one thing, but her heart tells her to do the opposite. If you remember, her boyfriend is a deputy, so the pressure to follow the laws of the land are going to be pretty high.

Carla:  So you would characterize this as a pretty intense dramatic story?

CJ: Yes. But it’s also heartwarming and sweet. I wanted to give my readers the sort of Christmas story that leaves them feeling all warm and happy inside when they’re done. Tis the season, right?

Carla:  That it is. I hope you have a very Merry Christmas, CJ.

CJ: Same to you, Carla! And to all our Bandit Creek readers!

Carla:  Thanks for coming by today, CJ.  You can find out more about CJ Carmichael at www.cjcarmichael.com/. Her short story, THE GIFT will be available from Amazon.com and Smashwords.com on December 15, 2011. If you have questions or comments for me or for CJ, please leave a response and we’d be happy to reply!

Carla Interviews Amy Jo Fleming about ‘Death at Bandit Creek’

Hi, I’m Carla Roma and welcome to Bandit Creek, a small town with a mountain of secrets. The fall is one of my favorite times of year. The beautiful colors of the leaves, the first snow, getting ready for Thanksgiving — it all brings back memories of Thanksgiving that we have shared with our own families. Like that first day of school, the fall also brings the promise of new starts. I have been delighted to read DEATH AT BANDIT CREEK. It’s clear from the title that this book is a mystery story, but, it’s also a story of redemption and new beginnings. Today, it is my pleasure to interview Amy Jo Fleming about her book, DEATH AT BANDIT CREEK, the fifth book in the Bandit Creek series.

Carla: As a writer, I imagine that one of the first questions anyone asks you is where do you get your ideas?

AJF: I come from a family of storytellers and teachers. The stories of the young women who went west and taught in one-room schoolhouses are stories of courage and adventure. I wanted to capture the traits in my heroine that would make her willing to dare this great endeavor. I wanted to write about these young women who ventured out alone, to teach the children of our settlers and acknowledge the important role they played.

Carla: How do you commemorate those early schoolteachers?

AJF: It was important to see Charlotte, my heroine, feeling lonely and unsure at the beginning of the book. Then we see her confidence grow when she makes a success of her job as a teacher. One of my favorite parts of the book is when she puts on the annual Thanksgiving Pageant. It was a chance to show her with her students, teaching them and encouraging them to be successful.

Carla: When we first meet Charlotte, she is waiting in a train station. It really brings to mind another great story where the heroine is first seen at the train station.

AJF: Okay, I’m busted. Anne of Green Gables is my favorite book ever. I did want Charlotte to have a lot of the same qualities as Anne did, like courage and spunkiness. Charlotte is almost an orphan, on her own in Bandit Creek because her parents have gone west, but she doesn’t have the innocence of a child. She has to rely on the kindness of strangers. She has to make her own way and decide who she can trust and who she can’t.

Carla: Annie is a school teacher who became a fallen woman. Why did you choose to make her a teacher as well?

AJF: Annie’s story is a cautionary tale for a young woman in the early 1900’s. She was originally in the same situation as Charlotte, a young teacher on her own in Bandit Creek. But she made very different choices. She lived to regret her choices. We all know that young women, who are on their own, face risks. That’s as true today as it was in 1911. Charlotte, with her attitude, was just better prepared to deal with some of the risks she faced.

Carla: We don’t get to see very much of the character of Eileen McArthur who opens the book.

AJF: No, we don’t. She is the focus of the mystery and the only way we get to know her is by the way the other characters talk about her. Her story is tragic because her life ended so early.

Carla: Now who is Alec Forrest?

AJF:  Alec Forrest is the true orphan in the book. He witnessed the death of his parents. Now we’re back to the question of how being an orphan affects a person. It left a lot of scars and he copes by blocking everyone out. But he never has lost that basic sense of honor and decency that his parents taught him.

Carla: And the way I picture him, he’s very good looking in his lambskin jacket.

AJF: Honestly Carla, when I think of Alec, I think of Alex O’Loughlin who plays Steve McGarret on Hawaii Five-O – that striking dark, brooding appearance. A hero to die for.

Carla: And throughout the book, the tension grows on two levels…

AJF: Yes, the real mystery is what happened to Eileen McArthur and is someone out to get Charlotte, too. But the other theme of the story is will love triumph for these two characters who have been so hurt in the past.

Carla: Your book was quite a ride, Amy Jo. I could hardly put it down.

AJF: Thank you for saying that. The kind of story that I want to tell is a page-turner. I want the reader to be swept away to the world of Bandit Creek and then have the satisfaction of saying that’s the ending I was hoping for.

Carla: DEATH AT BANDIT CREEK is your first fiction to be published. You must be excited.

AJF: So excited. The group of Bandit Creek writers has been spectacular to work with. I feel so privileged to be part of this project. I just can’t tell you — I am so excited that my book is going to be published.

Carla: Thanks, Amy Jo and congratulations on your first publication.

You can find out more about Amy Jo Fleming at amyjofleming.blogspot.com. Her book, DEATH AT BANDIT CREEK will be available from Amazon.com and Smashwords.com on November 15, 2011. If you have questions or comments for me or for Amy Jo, please leave a response and we’d be happy to reply!