Before the Storm

 

storm-clouds-426271_1920Hurricanes are a way of life down here in the South. Every summer and fall, at some point we’re glued to the television wondering where the a storm will hit. Sometimes, that track is heading right in our direction. Like today. Hurricane Laura is due to make landfall somewhere on the Texas/Louisiana coast. We’re a hardy breed though, us Cajuns, and this isn’t our first dance with Mother Nature.

Hurricanes are fascinating to me. I remember when I would tell people from Oklahoma that I was moving to Louisiana, and they would say, “But they have hurricanes!” To which I would reply, “And we have tornadoes!” Twenty years after moving here, and having been through several storms, I still say that I’d rather deal with hurricanes than tornadoes.

It was only natural that a storm would make it into my writing at some point, and one  is brewing in Once and for All. Here’s one of my favorite scenes, and one I thought about this morning as I made my own trip to Albertson’s…

Carly followed the directions Gemma had given her and soon was pulling into the crowded parking lot of Albertsons. It was so full, she had to take a spot close to the busy street, Johnston, she had just turned off of. A little walk wouldn’t hurt. She needed to work off some nervous energy, anyway. 

She grabbed a stray cart on the way, not knowing if they would have any when she got in there, and surveyed her list again. It was pretty simple, the basic hurricane supplies, plus stuff for gumbo. It was an unwritten rule that when a storm came, gumbo was made. It may be chicken and sausage, shrimp and okra, or seafood in general, but when a storm was brewing, you made a gumbo. It was a good thing Emily knew how to make one, because Carly had no idea where to even begin. 

She was glad she had grabbed the cart when she walked into the store because there were none up front and the store was full of people. As she turned the first corner, it was chock-a-block, like a grocery store rush hour. Everyone wanted the same things at the same time. 

I need a drink. She sighed and longed for the laidback attitude of Bon Chance. She had a feeling that today there would be no “how ya doin?” or “how is your mom and dem?”

She pushed through the aisles picking up gumbo ingredients, bell peppers, celery, onions, and roux. Then the paper goods and water. She almost bumped a cart or two on the bottled water aisle that was almost empty. It was as if the zombie apocalypse had begun. 

Her phone dinged as she waited for a grocery store employee to pull out another pallet of bottled water. I hope they’re paying him overtime. People began pulling off shrink wrapped bundles before he stopped.

She grabbed her phone to see that Joey had messaged her. 

Joey: Wyd? 

Carly: Grocery shopping.

She grinned as she waited for his response. 

Joey: Emily trusted you with that? 

Carly: Boo, I can follow a list. I just can’t cook what’s on it. 

She resisted the urge to laugh out loud in the aisle. Seeing that there was some water left, she grabbed a package and put it in the cart. She sighed. Was this storm really going to be that bad? 

Rain poured down as Carly pushed the cart full of groceries out to the parking lot. The walk was long, and her hair was soaked. The puddles on the ground seeped through her shoes. The wind whipped again, chilling her wet body. 

She wiped her face dry only to have more water drip down from her hair. “I wish I was anywhere but here.” 

Want to read more? Download the first three chapters for FREE! 

https://dl.bookfunnel.com/k4thmssijy

Once and For All (2)

Be safe out there everyone, and happy reading!

A.L. Vincent

 

“Revelry’s Requiem”

Violin and music sheet

Some time ago, it was suggested that the authors of Bienvenue Press get together and write a book in which all of the stories were set in the Chateau Rouge, the fictional hotel in my series of the same name.  Those plans started to come to fruition when we had planned to attend an event together next month in New Orleans.

I felt a little weird about writing my own story in my own hotel for this particular project, so I was just going to sit back and see what these other talented writers had in store for my characters. Plans changed, obviously.

I have had a thing for Claudio de Fiore in Carrie Dalby’s Possession Chronicles Series since book one, Perilous Confessions. He reminds me so much of my own character, Alcide Santiago, the dark and mysterious head of security at the Chateau Rouge. So when she suggested Claudio come pay a visit to New Orleans, I was all in.

This was my first co-write, and although I was a little nervous at first (these are my babies), it turned out to be a truly fun experience and I’m very pleased with the final product.

Here’s a little sneak peek!

From “Revelry’s Requiem” in the Bienvenue to the Chateau Rouge anthology. 

When Claudio passed through the lobby, he looked to the front desk. A man clad in all black stood beside the proprietress like a demon in men’s clothing. They both watched the priest so he smiled before stepping into the gaiety of the bar.

The dark paneled room was alight with swaying bodies, chatter, the clink of glass, and music. The upright piano was played by a man with garters over his white sleeves and a jaunty straw hat set crooked on his head. Valentino perched on top the tall piano, legs kicking to the ragtime song as he fiddled along. Beside him, a buxom brunette in a skirt much too short for the frigid temperatures outside sang in a clear voice.

Claudio made his way across the room, creating a trail of silence before he stopped beside the piano.

“Claudio!” Valentino jumped to the ground and embraced him with one arm as he kissed his cheeks. “Why did you not leave off the coat and collar before joining me?”

His eyes swept the bar’s occupancy before answering. It was lessened by half a dozen men from when he entered. “Why did you not inform me where you were residing?”

Valentino ran a hand through his chin-length, black hair and grinned. “I can assure you this hotel is better than the one the orchestra put me in when I first arrived. I found Chateau Rouge my second week here and moved in immediately.” He set his violin and bow on the now silent piano and helped the singer to the ground. “Cogino, meet Ivy. She has the voice of a songbird.”

Her gray eyes were as arresting as her figure, but Claudio felt the danger she presented before touching her cold hand. She leaned in for kisses—the hallmark of Valentino’s seductions always included making his women accept and give Italian greetings.

“I have never been so close to a priest before. You smell delicious.”

“It is lovely to meet you, Ivy.” Claudio’s hand went into his pocket to rub the crucifix. “It appears my vestments in a brothel are more inspiring than a Sunday sermon.”

“Such weaklings! They need to be content with their actions to enjoy them fully. No regrets, no guilt.” Valentino waved a dismissive hand before banging it on the piano. “Begin, Winston, I want music while I drink with mio cogino. Did you not bring vacation clothes, Claudio?”

He narrowed his eyes at the twenty-year-old. Ivy placed a hand on Claudio’s shoulder and ran it down his sleeve—bringing back memories of his lost love, Eliza.

“You’re about the same size as Alcide.” She smiled and turned to Valentino. “Surely the head of security would loan a few things for the cause of protecting the guests from their own beliefs.”

Valentino’s bravado faded. “You better handle that, Ivy.”

“Happily.” She nipped his neck before sashaying out of the bar.

“Is she not glorious?” Valentino nudged Claudio toward the now empty section of stools along the far counter. “I can no longer remember the names or faces of those girls in Mobile. Mere children compared to Ivy. She is perfect. I hope to join her for eternity.”

***

Bienvenue to the Chateau Rouge 

Release date May 12, 2020

Pre order for 99 Cents!

BienvenueeBookWelcome to the Chateau Rouge nestled in the heart of New Orleans. While Josey Jacobs checks you in to the elegant hotel, which was once one of the French Quarter’s most talked about bordellos, you may realize everything is not what it seems.

Spirits here do not Rest In Peace.

Drinks disappear from the bar. The apparition of a woman flickers at the corner of your vision. Bloodthirsty creatures prowl the halls. No two visits are ever the same, and guests will forever be changed by what transpires.

Grab your room key from the desk and brace yourself for four unique stories told from within these enchanted walls:

“Revelry’s Requiem” by Jolie St. Amant and Carrie Dalby
(A Chateau Rouge and Possession Chronicles Crossover)

Danger arrives at Chateau Rouge during the 1911 carnival season in the form of an Italian violinist, Valentino De Fiore. Seeking to flaunt his fame, Valentino sends for his cousin, Father Claudio De Fiore, to visit from his small Louisiana parish. The instant Claudio arrives, he feels powers of darkness closing in around Valentino. In over their heads with the arrogant violinist and a young vampire who loves him, Josephine and Alcide must turn to Selena Prosperie, the oldest vampire in New Orleans in hopes of bringing secrecy back to their establishment. Can the vengeful immortal control the situation without unleashing her fury on the De Fiore cousins?

Book Link: https://books2read.com/u/bpOMw9

Catch and Release

fish

 

The weather is getting warmer and the days are getting longer. Spring is on the horizon. I love spring, with the flowers starting to bloom and the trees budding out. It’s like nature wakes up and comes alive.

It’s also when I get the urge to sit on the bank of some body of water and cast the old fishing pole out. There’s something very soothing about just being outside and watching the sun glisten off the water. Sometimes, if the fish aren’t biting, I’ll put my pole aside and just sit down and enjoy a quiet moment with the birds and turtles. There’s probably snakes too, but I don’t like to think too much about those! Lol.

This weekend, I found another benefit to fishing. I was sitting at the computer working on Once and For All, my next novel, and I got stuck.  So, I sat there for a bit, trying to figure out how to get unstuck. It wasn’t happening. It was so pretty outside that I decided to take a walk down to the pond and cast a few times to see if anything was biting.

You know what? I didn’t get a single fish, what I did get was the inspiration to not only finish the scene I was working on, but three other scenes as well! I have enough to write ALL week! So, I’m definitely thinking about adding fishing to my brainstorming repertoire. On a side note, I did go back after I got some words in and I caught a two small fish. So, I have to say that day was a win-win situation!

One of my characters, Carly, likes to fish too. Only most of her fishing is for men. In my novella, Catch and Release, Carly goes on the search to find the perfect man by Christmas. She goes on all kinds of horrible dates in an attempt to find Mr. Right. Will she catch the prize fish or will she end up releasing them all?

Here’s an excerpt…

Joey is sitting at the bar. As always, he’s wearing a t-shirt, shorts, and a ball cap. Joey is quite the looker, and he’s been known to turn heads. He’s a little bit taller than me, has dark hair, dark eyes, and an olive complexion. But my favorite thing about Joey is his dimples. Which he flashes regularly.

“Not much. Been thinking about writing again,” I say. I usually spend a few hours in the morning pondering ideas and writing some down. So far, the only thing that has stuck is something about dating and men. I haven’t completely figured a story out yet, but I will.

“It’s about time,” he says. “So whatcha thinking of writing about?”

“I’m kind of thinking about writing a book about dating.”

He almost chokes. “You? A book on dating? Are you writing about what not to do?”

That gets him a punch in the arm, which he and Ryder get often. Someone has to keep them in line.

“No, I’m serious,” I say. “It’s the holidays. I’m tired of being alone. I want someone to trim the tree with. I want someone to kiss under the mistletoe and to kiss on New Year’s Eve. I’m thinking about seriously looking for Prince Charming for Christmas. I’m thinking about keeping a journal and seeing what I can come up with for writing ideas. In fact, I already put my profile back online. They promise plenty of fish. I just hope they have some fish worth keeping.”

“You know what I told you about bringing home those shad.”

One night when I was complaining about my love life, Joey told me about shad, a type of throw-back fish that no one wants. He told me that night, “Carly, you’ve got to stop bringing home those stinky, no good fish. Look for something you want to keep.”

“You can’t catch a man by Christmas. I don’t care how well stocked the pond is.” I punch him in the arm again. “Oh really?”

“Oh really what?” I smile when I hear Ryder’s voice. I saw him when I came in. He was playing pool. I didn’t want to interrupt so I went to sit with Joey by the bar.

I sigh. “I need a man.”

He smiles mischievously and winks. “Well, you got one right here. What exactly is it that you need?”

My stomach flutters, my mind seizes up like cement, and I blurt out, “Fishing. I need to go fishing.”

He cuts his eyes at me. Ryder is gorgeous. He has a genuine smile that lights up his face. But what gets me is his eyes. He has the most amazing brown eyes of anyone I’ve ever seen. They sparkle with his mischievous sense of humor. When he cares for you, you know it because you can see it. So, I know he cares about me. I just don’t know if it’s more than friendship.

“You? Fishing?”

“Yes. I like to fish.” I stare into his eyes for a moment more, then stammer, “Music. We need music.”

Want to read more of Carly’s search? Check out Catch and Release! It’s FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

https://amzn.to/2vUQdFv

CatchReleaseeBook

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2vUQdFv

https://amzn.to/2vUQdFv

https://amzn.to/2vUQdFv

https://amzn.to/2vUQdFv

Merry Christmas at The Myrtles!

 

20191213_194322I love The Myrtles Plantation in St. Francisville, LA. I’m a big fan of history, and I love touring old houses and learning about how people lived in other eras. The bonus with The Myrtles is that is supposed to be one of the most haunted places in the nation. So, when you get a tour, you get a dose of the supernatural along with your history.

When I got the opportunity to participate in a holiday market at The Myrtles, I jumped at the chance. Not only was it a chance to market my books and get out and talk to people, I could go tour and ghost hunt again.

The house and grounds were all decorated for the holidays too. It was really beautiful to see! There was a huge tree in the foyer, and other rooms had smaller trees themed to the room. It definitely got me into the Christmas spirit.

Do you know what else gets me into the holiday feeling? A good Christmas romance book! I’ve found some good ones for you! Go check them out!

Visit The Myrtles online: https://www.myrtlesplantation.com/

1. The Worst Christmas Ever by Rebecca Paulinyi

worstchristmasWhen Shirley ‘Lee’ Jones returns home from an awful day at the office, the last thing she expects to find is her husband in bed with another woman. Six weeks until Christmas, and Lee finds the life she had so carefully planned has been utterly decimated.

Hurt, angry and confused, Lee makes a whirlwind decision to drive her problems away and ends up in Totnes, an eccentric town in the heart of Devon. As Christmas approaches, Lee tries to figure out what path her life will follow now, as she looks at it from the perspective of a soon-to-be 31-year-old divorcée.

Can she ever return to her normal life? Or is a new reality – and a new man – on the horizon?

Will this be the worst Christmas ever?

Read for FREE with Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2RVcoEf

2. A Picture Perfect Christmas by J.P. Uvalle

PPCUvalleYou never forget your first love. No matter how hard you try.

Darren Hayes, her once-best friend, has been gone longer than Melody Boyer, can remember. Well, that’s a lie. He’s been gone four years, eleven months, three weeks and two days. Since Christmas Eve: the night they took their friendship to the next level. He rocked her world and made all her fantasies come true only to leave her behind in Hudson Heights to see the world through his lens.

And now he’s back, Mr. famous photographer walking into town like he didn’t destroy her world years ago. Showing up on her doorstep asking for forgiveness and a chance to be friends again. But friends don’t kiss like he kisses her goodbye… and when he proposes they become friends with benefits and see what develops, Melody can’t help but wonder what the negatives are. Can she agree to these terms and have the best sex of her life anytime she wants, no strings attached? Or will Darren capture her heart only to break it all over again?

If you like over-the-top romance with a hint of Christmas and some tantalizing sexy times in between, then this delicious treat is for you.

Only 99 Cents!!!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2EmpMsY

3. Tinder Heart by Bree Pierce

tinderWhen those closest to me stabbed me in the back, I ran away from the city for a chance to heal. Then I met Will, my living, breathing, fantasy man. And the epitome of everything that could break my heart. He might walk away if I tell him the secret I hold so close—if I don’t push him away first. Can I trust a man with my heart one more time?

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2YSj8Uw

4. Unexpected Mistletoe Kisses by Milan Watson

umkMegan fell in love with Kingston when she was four years old. How much longer can she deny the feelings she has secretly harbored for her brother’s best friend?

After he saved her kitten, Megan Price knew that Prince Charming didn’t always ride a white horse. Sometimes he was your brother’s best friend. As the years moved on Kingston became more and more handsome and so did the long line of broken hearts he left in his wake.

The first time Kingston Halloway noticed that little Megan had grown up, was the evening of her prom. He had paid for it with a bloody nose and a promise to Alex to never look her way again. For years he has ignored her chestnut hair and amber eyes and the way her smile lit up a room.

When Megan unwittingly buys the house next to Kingston and hires him to help her renovate, can they both keep denying the attraction between them?

Read for FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2EorzgU

5. Hometown Heroes by Various Authors

HHeBookCommunity. Courage. Compassion.

Hometown Heroes brings you five Christmas romances that celebrate everyday heroes.

From paranormal to contemporary to historical, there’s something here to fill everyone with the spirit of the season.

A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Cajun Navy Relief, an organization dedicated to helping neighbors in distress.

Only 99 cents for a limited time!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2YP9jqy

Merry Christmas!

A.L. Vincent/Jolie St. Amant

 

“Saving Grace”

savinggrace

Last year, my publishing company, Bienvenue Press started an annual charity anthology. Hometown Heroes was the title and we included short stories about ordinary people doing extraordinary things. A portion of the proceeds go to the Cajun Navy Foundation.

This year, our stories are about rescue animals, a subject near and dear to my heart. Donations from Finally Home, will go to various animal rescue programs. I had originally planned to do a Chateau Rouge story, but no ideas just jumped out me. Then it hit me, Grace, from Running on Empty had a story to finish. Her happily-ever-after wasn’t complete yet. Her sidekick is Furby, a dog she rescued, and a perfect subject for a story.

Furby was actually one of my dogs, as was Sammy, and Oscar, all who have passed on. Furby, the last one, crossed the rainbow bridge just a little over a year ago.  And man, did I struggle with this one. It was tough to write. However, I am very pleased with how it turned out, and I was also pleasantly surprised when it took the Boonies in a different direction. You’ll have to read it to find out what this is though. 🙂

For now, I have an excerpt for you. Release date is set for December 10th, so you don’t have to wait long!

“Saving Grace”

Grace hesitated a moment before sliding her key into the apartment door. She took a breath to calm herself before facing Gabe and his sweet but concerned eyes.

He always had that look when she came home from visiting with Dr. Melancon. As if he wanted to ask what they had talked about even though he already knew. These sessions had been his idea when her random outbursts of anger had almost caused them to break up at one point.

It was all Brent’s fault, she thought. Although Dr. Mel had told her that it was reactive thinking and she needed to be proactive.

Grace rolled her eyes. Proactive would be driving to New Orleans, finding him and punching him in the throat.

She heard a bark from inside and knew she had been discovered. With a sigh, she opened the door and pasted a smile on her face.

Furby, the little white ball of fur she had rescued years ago came running up to her. His paws tip tapping on the hard wood floors of their small Austin apartment.

When he reached her, he jumped, then did his welcome home dance on his back paws. She laughed then, as she always did, and picked him up. She buried her face in his soft fur and squeezed him tight.

Gabe wandered in behind Furby, his lanky form filling the entry way. His green eyes were soft when he smiled at her. “He’s been watching the door for you.”

She held him out so she could look him in the eyes, “You did, Furb? You’re such a good boy.” With that, she placed him back down on the ground gently and he ran away. Back to the comfort of the dog bed they’d placed beside the sofa. He liked to turn it around so the high back faced the front. He looked like an overgrown rat defending the Queen’s castle.

Be sure to be alerted on release day!

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Peace! I’m out!

A.L. Vincent

Tales from Rougarou Fest!

RR

A couple of years ago, Houma, Louisiana started a new festival all about the Rougarou. What is a rougarou, you ask? It’s like a Cajun werewolf. It has the head of a wolf or a dog, and the body of a human. This new festival also wants to raise awareness of our disappearing coastline and donates proceeds to the Wetlands Discovery Center.

This festival has a little bit of everything, and if you love Halloween like I do, then you’ll be a fan as well. There’s a costume contest, and I saw Minions, Michael Myers, Clark Kent, and others enter to win. But that’s not all, there’s the witches, and the Voodoo Kings and Queens too!

Oh, and there’s a parade! Who doesn’t love a good parade? Watch as the aforementioned witches do their thing, the zombies dance to “Thriller’, and see huge skeleton puppets. It’s family and dog friendly so feel free to bring the entire family.

Want more information? Click the link below:

https://rougaroufest.org/

In the spirit of the rougarou, I’m including some links to books with all kinds of  werewolves and shifters. Enjoy!

1. Phoenix Rising by Madison Granger

prTorie Masters is a curvy, middle-aged, divorcee with a normal job and family life. Her penchant for paranormal romances leaves her longing for the day she will meet the man who will sweep her off of her feet. She’s been dreaming a long time.

Quinn McGrath is Liege Lord to a centuries old clan of shifters known as The Kindred. All have been promised a destined mate by the Goddess. He has all but given up finding his.

Sparks fly when Quinn meets Torie. Could his ‘Promised Soul’ finally be real? The eternal mates might not stand a chance as man and nature work against them. From assassination attempts to hurricanes, their future is put to the test across the globe.

Is their bond strong enough to see them through to forever?

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/324l1xn

2. Infinite Blue by Natalina Reis

IBlueWhen a shifter and a human are bound by fate, neither man knows if their connection will be enough to save not only their growing love, but their lives.

Shahin Halcón has been taught that if and when he meets his soul mate, he’ll know immediately. Always the rebel, he doesn’t believe it until the day he crosses paths with Cai, a full-human.

Plagued by unsuccessful relationships and heartache, Cai Banes’s life is quiet and unexciting. When he meets young and wild Shahin, his life is turned upside down, and he’s not sure he likes it.

But neither can deny the powerful pull that draws them together.

Old secrets and ancient myths about cross-species relationships plague their romance and threaten to put their happiness and life at risk. Will their love for each other be strong enough to survive?

ONLY 99 CENTS FOR A LIMITED TIME!!!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2oBMsBi

3. A Deal With Death, by Carrie Pulkinen

dealdeathShe pissed off the Voodoo Spirit of Death.
Now she has to make amends…

Death doesn’t scare Voodoo practitioner Odette Allemand, but dying sure as hell does. Every time she meets her soulmate, her life ends in a horrific murder.

Then she’s reincarnated to have it happen all over again.

Odette is determined to survive this lifetime, but when a sexy werewolf knocks on her door, unearthing emotions she thought she’d buried, her fate is sealed with his enticing kiss.

James Malveaux hasn’t seen Odette since junior high, but the moment they reunite, his wolf wants to claim her as his mate.

That’s if the monster they’ve awakened doesn’t kill them first.

Without the help of the Spirit of Death, they can kiss their lives goodbye. Can James help Odette make peace with her inner demons and the Spirit? Or will the couple be doomed to the same gruesome ending as their countless lives before?

Amazon Buy Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07R4PRC3H

That’s it for me for now!

Bon Chance!

A.L. Vincent/Jolie St. Amant

For even more on the rougarou, check out this article!

“History of the Rougarou: Louisiana’s Warewolf”

https://bit.ly/2BVHySv

The Shoes!

Red Shoes

As I write Once and For All, which is Carly’s story, I find her story really and truly starts in Tangled up in You. She is still in mourning after her brother’s death, and she comes home one day to find her fiance’ in bed with another woman. It’s then that she becomes “stuck”. She doesn’t really move forward with her life. Fear becomes her constant companion. She’s afraid of change of any kind. Her routine is her comfort. Little does she know that a hurricane is about to come and shake up that routine and completely force her out of her comfort zone.

Here’s the scene in Tangled up In You, when Carly comes back from Biloxi. The shoes? They become a very important part of Carly’s new story.

-from Tangled up in You

Emily sipped the drink and considered getting another bowl of gumbo, or jambalaya, or red beans and rice. She was eyeing the table when the door opened again.

A younger blonde walked in, followed by a dark haired man of the same age. Carly and Joey. Grace and Ryder followed. Now everyone was here. Everyone except Noah. And Benjamin, Emily thought, wincing as her heart contracted. A year later, Ben’s loss still hurt.

“If he thinks I’m going to sit here and be sad, he’s got another thing coming. He can be replaced,” Carly said, flopping down on one of the couches.

“What are you talking about, cher?” Daniel asked, getting up from the table.

“Don’t get her started,” Joey said. He went to the bar, poured himself a big shot, then fixed a drink.

“Drink this,” he said, handing the drink to Carly.

Uncomfortable, Emily grabbed her own drink and went to stand beside the fireplace.

“Well, isn’t she a ray of sunshine,” Ryder said to Gabriel as they shook hands.

“Who is?” Carly said, blue eyes flashing. “You didn’t just walk in on your fiancé all fragrance de lecto.”

“Do you mean in flagrante delicto?” Daniel asked.

“Yeah, whatever,” Carly said. “I caught him naked.”

“I’m assuming not alone,” Daniel said.

“No! He wasn’t alone. He had a woman! With shoes!”

Carly started pacing the room, grumbling to herself. Her blonde ponytail bounced behind her, flip-flops slapping on the hardwood floor. Emily caught the words “douche bag” and “throat punch. The others left her alone, so Emily did too.

Have you read the first book in the Bon Chance Boonies series? If you haven’t, you can find it on Amazon. And it’s FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2TsN4Hx

tangledteaser

 

Hurricane Season

barry

It’s that time of year again in the South…Hurricane season. No, not the drink, the storm. And we’ve already had our first one. Hurricane Barry. It’s early in the season for us. Generally, our storms come later in the year, in September and October. It was an interesting storm, it moved very, very, slow. This meant it lasted longer than usual, and increased the threat of flooding. We fared very well through the storm. We had some street flooding, but didn’t lose power and since it’s July in Louisiana, power is necessary!

Have you ever been through a hurricane or big storm? I would love to hear your stories! And speaking of stories, the storm gave me a lot of motivation and inspiration to work on Once and For All. This novel starts with an approaching hurricane and the rest of the story is about rebuilding after. Here’s a little excerpt…

As they approached the apartment, Gemma said, “When I grabbed my hurricane supplies this morning, I grabbed some extras for you as well. I got a couple flashlights, some water and ice, extra oil for the hurricane lamps. There’s a small grocery store at the intersection where the light is, but I’m not sure what they’ll have at this point. I’m sure you know how it is when a storm rolls in. It’s like the end of the world.”

“Thank you so much,” Emily said.

“You’re very welcome. Can I help you unload?”

“I think we got it,” Emily replied. “We don’t have too much.”

“Okay, then, I’ll get back to the shop. I have a few things to attend to there.”
Gemma hugged Emily, then Carly. “Text if you need anything. And keep me posted on how things are here.”

“Will do,” Emily said before turning to Carly, “Let’s get this stuff unloaded, then head over to the cafe and check on things.”

“You got it,” Carly said. She looked up at the sky, “We better get a move on. It looks like the big rain will be here soon.”

The storm clouds twisted around in the darkening sky. The wind picked up too, whipping through the trees. Carly felt a churning in her own stomach, a sense that something bad was coming. Had they made a mistake coming to Lafayette?

Want to read more? Check out the story on Wattpad!

https://www.wattpad.com/myworks/155292374-once-and-for-all

Once and for All

Want to read a real-life hurricane story that involves a wedding? Check out this story from Lee St. John’s, She’s a Keeper!

“Rain, Rain, Go Away”

While in Raleigh, North Carolina for the wedding and reception of a teacher friend in December 1982, Future Hubby and I met an older gentleman who became interested in our recent engagement and the date we had set for our upcoming nuptials. We replied that we settled on May 14 that coming year.

“May fourteenth, well, well,” he said. “According to the Farmer’s Almanac, the second weekend in May is always the nicest weekend in the South. You should check it out and see for yourself.” The next day, we immediately bought a 1983 Farmer’s Almanac before leaving North Carolina.

Sure enough, the almanac mentioned that the upcoming second weekend in May was the best weekend for farming because of the slightly warmer temps and no rain showers. It was like getting the green light to a perfect wedding day from a crystal ball. We were elated and trusted it completely.

As I counted down the days until the ceremony, I was especially concerned about the weather because my parents and I planned an outdoor reception on my front lawn on the thirty acres where I grew up. Everything for the wedding reception was to be outside—the band, the tables and chairs for guests, the tables for food, the wedding couple’s dance, pictures, everything.

All this effort made my mother and me especially nervous that the weather might not cooperate. The almanac was the only proven information that it was going to turn out well. But what if there was an off year, and what if it was 1983?

As the wedding day drew closer, my fears heightened, and so did the chance of rain. With only a week to go, the Atlanta news and weather stations reported it did not look all that good. If it rained, how were we going to get all those people in my parents’ house? Leaving the church to ride home, getting in and out of the car in my wedding dress, and grey skies in pictures just seemed unthinkable.

In 1983, there were no rental props in my small town. There was no Weather Channel either. I became so concerned that I called the meteorologist at the national weather service…every day. I called the national weather office because our local stations didn’t see the big weather picture in 1983. They only forecast local weather in the here, now, or tomorrow. I called so much we knew each other on a first name basis. I was totally afraid the weather was going to move in and ruin my day. He assured me that was not going to be the case. All looked clear for that week and weekend from California to Georgia.

Then it happened. There was a squall from the Gulf rumbling into Georgia just two days before the wedding. Mother and I panicked and scrambled to solve the problem. If only we knew someone who had university tailgating tents we could borrow. The only tents we knew about were the tents from our local funeral home…with their name emblazoned across the scalloped hem. They were not even in my wedding ensemble colors. And a few of them might have said, “We’re the last to let you down.” I was almost in tears.

A day later, the meteorologist and I spoke again and he knew I was in agony. He calmed my fears and told me that there was no need to worry. The storm had moved off in another direction and the next few days were going to be perfect.

And they were.

Note to self: always trust the Farmer’s Almanac.

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Click the link to read more! https://amzn.to/2Ku8bl2

Stay safe out there my friends!

Bon Chance and Happy Reading!

A.L.Vincent and Jolie St. Amant

Beach Reads!

Ready to take a trip to the beach? Check out these books perfect for an escape! These are stories of vacations, small town romance, cruise ship romance, and MORE!

Open Book

  1. Daisies in the Outfield (Cape Cod Love), by Carolyn LaRoche

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After his professional baseball career crashed and burned, Jamie escaped to the scenic coastal town of Falmouth for a fresh start. With a new career that fit his personality, Jamie lived life on his terms. His terms were simple—fight fires for the adrenaline rush, coaching MLB hopefuls for the love of the game, and spending his nights with one of the many pretty faces that crossed his path. Plenty of women passed through his life but none had tempted him to settle down.

Until a feisty brunette changed all that. Too bad the sexy paramedic had no interest in Jamie or spending the night with him. She carried an attitude as thick as her New York accent and he wanted to coax a smile on her face. Mandy was running from something and Jamie couldn’t help but be intrigued.

Can a sexy little wager convince a confirmed bachelor and a woman running from her past to take a chance on love?

FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2WVijYF

2. Hawaiian Taboo (The Spirit of Ohana Cruise Ship Series), by Lainy Kaye

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The Land of the Lei
A plan to get laid
All the best laid plans go astray…

Summoned to attend her parents’ renewal of vows aboard the luxurious Spirit of Ohana cruise line, Lissa is reluctant to leave her job, her home—heck, even her pretend cats. But the newly-diagnosed commitment-phobe is eager to escape the memories of her ex-fiancé. And, according to her bestie, a tropical vacation is the perfect opportunity for a no-strings fling to conquer the fear of being trapped that has the scientist’s knees glued firmly together.

Luck is on her side when she meets gorgeous military man, Nate. The handsome soldier is more than happy to re-initiate her into the flirting game—and take the experiment a whole lot further when they meet up again on the cruise. It seems magical Hawaii will melt the polar icecaps protecting Lissa’s heart.

But Nate hides a secret, one that could see Lissa unwittingly break one of life’s most forbidden taboos. When she discovers his deception, Lissa has a very particular revenge in mind. But if revenge is a dish best served cold, she’ll have to find a way to combat both the tropical heat—and the fire Nate lights within her.
Each book in The Spirit of Ohana Cruise Ship series is a standalone, featuring swoony romance, hot banter, steamy on-the-page scenes….and a guaranteed HEA

FREE on Kindle Unlimited

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2QFOOZy

3. Falling Into Place (Summer at Falling Pines Book 4) by Stephanie Scott

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Mia Hammond hates her job, but after her last career went down in flames, well, a girl needs to keep a roof over her head, right? When she discovers her beloved Camp Falling Pines needs her help, she wonders if those burned bridges from her sports agent days can be rebuilt.

Aaron Stanek needs to turn his family’s expansion hockey team around quick, before they lose their sponsors and any hope of recruiting new talent. Except the players have no respect for him, and his father isn’t helping Aaron find his footing.

When Mia discovers her ex-boyfriend Aaron has a team desperately in need of positive press, it sounds like the perfect match…or it would be, if she didn’t have to work with Aaron, since he’s the reason her career tanked in the first place. Aaron blames himself for what happened—but in his heart, Mia is still the one who got away. They agree to keep their partnership strictly professional, but keeping their feelings in check is another thing entirely.

FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2ZB5XXo

4. Getting Hot with the Scot: A Sometimes in Love Novel by Melonie Johnson

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Cassie Crow, a pop-culture reporter for a TV talk show, is focused on becoming a “serious” journalist. But when she stumbles into a kilted Highlander with a killer accent, Cassie decides that taking one night off from work and spending it with a sexy Scot couldn’t hurt. . .

Logan Reid has built a career on his charm, hosting a series of off-the-wall hijinks on the Web. But when the Scottish prankster meets the all-American, equal parts intelligent and irresistible Cassie, Logan realizes that one night of fun won’t be enough. Could it be that this career-focused, commitment-phobic couple is finally ready to take a chance at true and lasting love?

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2Kv15j2

5. Sweet Tea & Second Chances: A Second Chance Small Town Romantic Comedy (Lovebird Café Book 1) by Dylann Crush

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They say true love lasts forever… but what do they know?

There’s a legend surrounding The Lovebird Café… those who meet and fall in love there end up together forever. But up-and-coming chef Cassiopeia Belmont doesn’t have time for small-town lore. She’s got one thing on her mind: getting in and out of Swallow Springs, Missouri before the dust settles. If she can sell the farmhouse her grandparents left her, she’ll have enough cash to invest in her own high-profile restaurant in Dallas and finally put down the roots she so desperately craves.

Contractor Robbie Jordan thought he’d put his childhood sweetheart behind him. But when Cassie shows up, he can’t help but remember what they used to have and how she made him feel.

When Cassie hires Robbie to perform the renovations on the house, memories from the past rise to the surface and muck up their current plans. But is a second chance worth taking if they haven’t learned from their past mistakes?

Snag your copy of Sweet Tea & Second Chances today and relax into Swallow Springs, Missouri, where a cocky rooster rules the roost and all of life’s problems can be solved while sipping on a nice cold glass of sweet tea.

FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2XYhHTr

6. The Orchard Inn (Orchard Inn Romance Series Book 1) by A.M. Kusi

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Ella lives in constant fear. After seven years of concealing her whereabouts from an abusive ex, she gets an opportunity for a fresh start when one of the few men she trusts leaves her a charming inn. When a mysterious, charming guest tempts her to open her heart again, she fears the scars from the past will keep her from anything close to love.

Hardworking and successful, River has always wondered if something’s missing from his life. And when he falls for the gorgeous proprietor of Orchard Inn, he knows the tattooed beauty is exactly what he needs. Moved by her pain, he encourages her to open up about her fears while he promises to stay by her side.

But just as their irresistible passions bloom, Ella’s brutal ex returns to reclaim what was never truly his.

Can Ella and River fight off the past long enough to awaken a forever love?

Buy now for 99 Cents!

Amazon Link: https://amzn.to/2x9dTTu

Bon Chance and Happy Reading!

A.L. Vincent/Jolie St. Amant

Want more beach reads? Check out my Boonie series set on the Louisiana coast!

Run away to the Gulf Coast

A.L. Vincent’s Amazon Page: https://www.amazon.com/A.L.-Vincent/e/B016X3YYW2

 

Take a Staycation!

A friend of mine and I were on way back from an Aaron Lewis concert when we decided to take a small detour and visit a local distillery. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, and when the tour guide suggested we go see one of the oldest wooden bridges in the state, we decided to do that too. Our little detour ended up being a whole day of stopping in to different places we had never been. It was a fun experience we plan on doing again. It doesn’t cost much. The distillery tour was free, as was the samples. 🙂 So was the small campground we visited. Here’s a highlight of our stops.

  1. Bayou Rum Distillery

staycation1Located in Lacassine, LA, it’s a beautiful structure just off the interstate. It’s open 7 days a week, with hourly tours. Our tour guide was friendly and knowledgeable. I highly recommend a stop here if you are in the area. Learn a little about the area, local farming, and how rum is made.

Website:  https://bayourum.com/distillery/.

2. Lorrain Park

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A short drive from Bayou Rum is Lorrain Park. A perfect place to stop for a picnic lunch, if you happened to plan ahead. It’s quiet, scenic, and picturesque. Take some time and snap some shots of the Lorrain Bridge, one of the oldest wooden bridges in the state.

Website:  https://www.cppj.net/services/parks-and-recreation/lorrain-park.

3. Uncle T’s Oyster House

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All our traveling worked up an appetite and we decided we wanted some crawfish. It’s getting late in the season, and we wanted to make sure we got in one last feast before the party was over. After several phone calls and one stop that go us nowhere on this adventure, we finally found some at Uncle T’s in Scott, La. We were not disappointed. The mudbugs were perfectly seasoned and not that hard to peel, which can happen as the crawfish get larger. I’ve had the raw oysters there before, and I recommend them as well.

Website: https://uncletsoysterbar.com/

 

4. Parish Brewing Company

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We made one last stop on our staycation. The Parish Brewing Company in Broussard, La. They too, also free tours, but only on Saturdays, and we arrived too late to take one. We did try a few of their craft beers in a sampler you can purchase. I found one flavor I will definitely go back for. Pets are allowed as well, so feel free to bring your furry friend along.

Website: https://www.parishbeer.com/

Have a free day? Get out and see what your area has to offer. It’s fun!

Here’s to new adventures!

Bon Chance and Happy Reading!

A.L. Vincent/Jolie St. Amant

Want to read more about our area? Check out my Boonie series set in South Louisiana!

Run away to the Gulf Coast

A.L. Vincent’s Amazon Page: https://www.amazon.com/A.L.-Vincent/e/B016X3YYW2