Monday, April 15, 2013

Happier Endings




Available Now

Did you ever wish you could have more of a certain story?  Well, here's one chance to read more of a book.  In honor of Intrigue month, I'm sharing a free bonus epilogue scene with readers from my March Intrigue, TACTICAL ADVANTAGE.  When I first wrote this story (maybe I was subconsciously writing a new single title novel?), it ran a bit long for Intrigue and my editor asked me to cut about 20 pages.  In other words, there was more to the story than what made it into the final published book.  I tightened some of the book, but a few of the snippets and scenes I dearly loved just had to be cut.  They didn't affect the main mystery or relationship, so for the many of you who have already read TACTICAL ADVANTAGE, don't worry that you may have missed something important.  I didn't cut anything pertinent to solving the mystery of the Rose Red Rapist and the Cleaner.  But, like most of you, I love a good happily ever after.  And, while those intense 48+ hours between Detective Nick Fensom and CSI Annie Hermann ended on an appropriately exciting moment, I thought some of you might appreciate a lengthier version of Nick & Annie's happily-ever-after.

So here it is... the original epilogue I wrote for TACTICAL ADVANTAGE.  It starts here and finishes on my website at www.juliemiller.org.  Enjoy the enriched ending... and explore my website to find an excerpt from my June Intrigue, ASSUMED IDENTITY, a Book GiveAway contest to enter, my monthly newsletter and much more. 



TACTICAL ADVANTAGE
(Excerpt)
By
Julie Miller
©2013

Epilogue

1 1/2 months later

            “Reitzie.”  Annie lifted the lazy Siamese from the domino tumble of picture frames on the mantel where he was lounging while Nick carried up their overnight bags from their weekend getaway to St. Louis.  She set the cat on the floor and shooed him off to find where his counterpart, G.B., was hiding.
            In between unbuttoning her coat and untying the pink scarf that Grandma Connie had knit for her, she straightened one beloved picture after another.  When she reached the mutilated photo from the Baseball Hall of Fame, she smiled.  Without feeling one pang of regret, she opened up her paisley messenger bag and pulled out one of the souvenir post cards she’d bought on their trip and quickly swapped out the old picture for the new one.  She crumpled the memory of her ex-fiancé in her fist and tossed it into the trash.
            “There.”  Annie was admiring the new picture of Busch Stadium in St. Louis, and the new memory it represented, when Nick came in.  He locked the door behind him and hung up their coats.  She pulled the new picture on the mantel to a more prominent position.  “That’s better.”
            Nick came up behind her to wind an arm around her waist and doff a salute to the statue of Stan ‘the Man’ Musial.  “Much better.  Maybe Stan and your dad are up in heaven playing some catch right now.”
            Feeling a pang of melancholy, Annie leaned back against his solid warmth, and found even more comfort when he slipped the other arm around her as well, and pressed a kiss against her cheek.  The sadness quickly passed and she folded her hands over his, soaking in all the miraculous changes in her life since that fateful New Year’s Eve.
            She had a reason to celebrate the holidays now…

Read the rest of the story at <http://www.juliemiller.org/contests_&_fun.htm#BonusExcerpt> 

Available May 21, 2013
Oh, and because I'm so excited to share my latest Beauty & the Beast romantic suspense, ASSUMED IDENTITY, I'll give away a copy here to one lucky poster.  Beauty & the Beast is my all-time favorite romantic storyline--what's yours?  (cowboys, men in uniform, amnesia, secret baby, friends becoming lovers, enemies becoming lovers, whatever)  I'll stop by through the day to chat, and ask my dog Maggie to pick a winner from all the comments and post it tomorrow.

Enjoy!
Julie Miller

23 comments:

  1. Sheikhs. Pure and simple. (Sorry; it's not like they are popular with Intrigues....)
    I love their powerfulness (which oftentimes becomes gentleness only with the heroine), their seductiveness, the countryside (so different from anything I have experienced), the "aloneness" they often get away from their security detail, and I could go on all day.
    Ahhh, a sheikh ... my hero.

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    1. So, do you like sheikhs a little bit, Laney4? Truly, there's something to fit every reader's passion/fantasy in the romance genre.

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  2. BEAUTY AND THE BEAST is a great favorite of mine too. I've read some wonderful books inspired by the tale.

    I'm always drawn to marriage of convenience stories. Love the 'dance' and then the realization.

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    1. That's another favorite of mine, Mary. Whether it's an actual marriage or a pretend marriage (that setup works well in an Intrigue, I think), you're right. I love how that pretending to be in love leads the H/h to discover that they really are falling in love. It's the whole idea of finding the one--and H/h never would have otherwise because either they never would have given that person a chance to enter their hearts, or they wouldn't have crossed paths. I love that surprise of finding love where you would never have expected to.

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  3. I love beauty and the beast and the books based on this fairy tale. What I love most about these kinds of books is, seeing beyond the outward appearance of someone to real gem that they are inside. That's why Beast in the tower is one of favorite intrigues.

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  4. Thank you, Avi J! BEAST IN THE TOWER was a lot of fun for me to write. (But then, those B&B stories usually are ) And you described it so well--it's truly a case of discovering and loving the person inside.

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  5. Ugh. Sorry, I can't get the link to work. Try this one to get to the free read: http://www.juliemiller.org/contests_&_fun.htm

    You'll need to scroll down the page to get to the bonus epilogue. (But if you want to stop and read the opening to my June Intrigue, ASSUMED IDENTITY, please feel free ;))

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  6. Beauty and the beast or the plain Jane stories. I love how the H/h look beyond the outside and see what is inside. Or I like where the H/h has to overcome something, be it a handicap or a bad childhood, etc. They just draw me in. As long as they have a happy ending, I'm happy!!
    P.S. Really liked the epilogue of Nick and Annie's story.

    DeniseB

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    1. Thanks, Denise--glad you enjoyed it!

      Plain Jane is one of my faves, too. I find that when I'm putting together a proposal for a miniseries, I tend to work in my favorite plots for the different books. Like in my current Precinct: Task Force miniseries, TACTICAL ADVANTAGE is an opposites attract story, ASSUMED IDENTITY is Beauty & the Beast, and TASK FORCE BRIDE is a plain Jane. I try to write what I love--makes it ever so much more enjoyable ;)

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  7. I have a hard time deciding which story line I like the best since I am an avid Intrigue fan but I choose cowboys as my favorite followed by soldiers.

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    1. Those wonderful Intrigue heroes are why it's my favorite line, Ellen. You know I love my cops and soldiers. But you can't go wrong with a great cowboy hero. (I love when they're combined--like Delores Fossen's Intrigues--the best of both cowboys and cops!)

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  8. Love the alpha male rogue with a strong female willing to risk it all for love. Add a touch of danger to make it irresistible. That's why Intrigues are such a great read.

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    1. I agree, Brenda. I don't love them alpha in the Presents sense, usually (although I've read many of those in the day), but more of an "earthy" alpha. Like someone I might possibly meet in real life. Of course, the Intrigue situations really bring out the alpha in a lot of heroes. Love that angle!

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  9. Love Beauty & The Beast type stories... read one recently... the poor guy saw himself as an ogre and did not believe he was worthy of the heroine... I enjoy seeing everyone get their chance at a HEA... other favs of mine are across the board... love fairytale based stories, love cowboys, boy next door, rags to riches, military, police/ firefighters, etc... so many to enjoy!!!

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    1. Agreed, Colleen--it's hard to pick just one!

      Do you remember the story you read? I love to pick up other B&B titles.

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  10. I love Beauty & Beast type, Cowboys, friends turned lovers, hmmm any good story line and I'm all for it :)

    MinDaf @ Aol.com

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    1. Agreed, Crystal--a good story is a good story, no matter what. I probably miss out on a few jewels because I tend to be drawn to what I know I'll like. Maybe I should take a risk and try a few more secret babies or some other storyline I'm less fond of. I'd hate to miss out ;)

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  11. Laura AKA Loves 2 Read RomanceApril 15, 2013 at 7:24 PM

    This is a hard question since I like so many types of stories. I think that's why I love the Intrigue series since there are so many types to choose from.

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  12. That's one reason I like Intrigue, too, Laura. There's a storyline/setting/author's voice for just about every reading taste. ;)

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  13. I love men in uniform! Honestly, what's sexier than a man with a great body? A man with a great body in a unifor,!

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  14. Sorry for the delay. Maggie has been busy treeing squirrels and barking at the FedEx man today. But let's get to it.

    And the winner is... Crystal Benedict!

    Congratulations, Crystal--Maggie nosed your name out of the pile of entries and selected you as the winner of a copy of ASSUMED IDENTITY. Just send me an email with your mailing address and I'll get a signed copy out to you ASAP.

    And thanks to everyone for stopping by to blog with me!

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    1. Congrats to Crystal! :)

      Julie the book I recently read was MAD ABOUT THE EARL by Christina Brooke. Really Enjoyed it!

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