Friday, December 18, 2015

FOODFIC: Dakota - Gwen Florio

Charlotte Brevik knows how to make a girl feel at home. The retired-nurse/sheriff’s wife fills Lola Wicks with chicken and dumplings swamped in peppery gravy, homemade bread, and creamy casserole of butterbeans she grew and canned herself. A hearty meal to warm a soul in a brutal climate, especially when that soul was just beaten up and left for dead in a snow-covered bar parking lot.

Not that said beating was enough to deter news reporter Lola from pursuing her story; before winding up at the Breviks’ for recovery fuel, Lola takes the time to throw back some tequila and question the guy (Ralph) who pulled her out of the snow about the recent string of vanished girls.

Now, don’t be thinking this Ralph is some sort of knight-in-shining-armor love interest for Lola; despite Lola’s condition and the circumstances that makes their paths cross that night, he still tries to cop a feel at the bar. And he’s actually quite far down the list of local creeps if we were to rank them on offensiveness! Yup, between the strip clubs and the man camp, Lola will need many more home-cooked dinners to sustain her through this investigation. ;)

Thursday, December 10, 2015

FOODFIC: Please Welcome Laura Hile, Author of Mercy's Embrace

Lady Disdain, beware!

For beneath the surface of even the most polished Regency gentleman can lurk...Guy Table Manners.

The lady may think them unintentional, but the gentleman begs to differ!

Never mind that Admiral McGillvary wore a borrowed coat, stained and threadbare into the bargain. The lovely Miss Elliot, seated by chance at his table, did not recognize him--she thought him a clerk! Nor did she bother to hide her scorn at his scruffy appearance.

The temptation to tease her was overwhelming. McGillvary gave her one of his most charming smiles...and tapped the hard tea biscuit sharply against the tabletop.

She looked up.

"Old habit," he remarked. "Reminds me of a nibby. A sea biscuit. Navy issue."

"Oh," she said. "The Navy."

McGillvary nearly laughed outright. Obviously, flirting with a clerk was taboo! When she looked his way, he poured the last of his tea into the saucer to cool. This was clearly outrageous; his mother would have boxed his ears! He lifted the saucer and took a long, gleeful draught.

Replacing it, he remarked, "A nice brew, but I prefer coffee. As you can see," he indicated his waistcoat, "we had a little mishap with the coffeepot."

"Do you mean today?" she said.

He stiffened. Did she think he would wear a stained waistcoat all week?

And so begins the sparring banter between the Admiral and the arrogant Miss Elliot, romantic leads in Mercy's Embrace, a spin-off of Jane Austen's Persuasion.

And it seems I cannot help myself. All my life I have been surrounded by men: a father, one brother, a husband, and three sons. Even though I write Regency, real-life male behaviors creep in. Too much fun!

Even though tapping the "nibby" was how sailors knocked the weevils out...

Not something I am wanting to eat.

Comment question: 

What outrageous Male Table Manners - the kind designed to get a rise out of guests - have you observed?

Thanks for stopping by to share your food for thought, Laura!

You can find Laura here:

Readers are loving Laura Hile's joyous Regency novels. Her signature style - intertwined plots, cliffhangers, and laugh-out-loud humor - keep them coming back for more.

The comedy Laura comes by as a teacher. There's never a dull moment with teen students!

This winter she will be releasing
Darcy By Any Other Name, a comic 'body-swap' romance based on Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice.

Laura lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and sons. Her fiction is for everyone, even teens.

Friday, December 4, 2015

FOODFIC: Please Welcome Jessica Haight & Stephanie Robinson, Authors of The Secret Files of Fairday Morrow

Well, HELLO Readers! I'm Mr. Morrow, and I'm here to reveal a few of my fun secrets. Now, my family is embarking on a great adventure, moving from Manhattan to an old Victorian in Connecticut known as The Begonia House. Our intention is to have the most enchanting bed-and-breakfast imaginable.

We think we've found the perfect location. My wife, Pru, is amazing with her interior design skills, but my wizardry in the kitchen will prove most useful. My daughter Fairday's interest has been piqued by the move, as we've heard that the house has a bit of mystery surrounding it. At first Fairday was apprehensive, but, now that we're here, she's been traipsing all over the house and grounds with her friends in the Detective Mystery Squad, and the only way I can get her back is to tantalize her taste buds.

Blueberry pancakes does the trick every time. It's her favorite dish, and she assures me it will be a smash hit when we open up the The Begonia House Bed-and-Breakfast. The key to extraordinary blueberry pancakes is to make them with love and be sure to speak with a French accent - this is very important.

Here's an example:

Dad: "What would you like for breakfast, mademoiselle?"
Daughter: "I'll have blueberry pancakes."
Dad: "Oui, oui!" (You must incorporate body language; I like to dance and put a little spin on the spatula when I flip the pancakes.)

Another detail essential to pancake delectability is to wear a funny apron. Mine asks potential diners if I've "GOT FOOD?" and yes, I do, so you can see how this comes in handy.

The last thing to remember is to make your pancakes with love, not just for the food, but for those you're cooking for. Food is an art, and, as one of my daughter's favorite authors, Neil Gaiman, says, "Whatever you do, make good art."

Bon apetit!

Thanks for stopping by to share your food for thought, Jessica and Stephanie!

You can find the authors here: