Celebrity Sightings (a new series)

When one looks back at their life, you realize how many incredible things have happened to you along the way. This series of blog postings will discuss celebrity sightings. The next series is still in the works, but I believe it will be on friendships developed and cherished over the years. I hope you not only enjoy the series, but stop back each week to see who is highlighted next.

Thank you,


Pope John XXIII (1960’s)

It started in 2nd grade, when I was picked to welcome Pope John XXIII to the New York. I was so excited telling everyone I knew, of any religion, what an honor was bestowed on me.


It was a frigid January day. The lucky few who were picked to attend the event met in the school yard at six a.m. We were loaded on to two school buses. I remember shivering in my school jumper and saddle shoes, my winter coat and tights not enough to keep me warm, my hat pulled down over my ears offered some heat. The bus took us along the Belt Parkway, police cruisers were everywhere. After a half hour, our bus was guided to the shoulder, then onto the grassy area about two miles from Idlewild Airport (Now JFK). The nuns emptied the buses and lined us up along the highway each with a rose. We stood out there for almost an hour. Shivering, cranky kids started to get restless when word came down the line that his Holiness’s caravan was approaching.


I had imagined this event in my mind for days. I knew just what I’d say to him, and who I’d ask him to pray for. I had just lost my cherished grandmother. The Pope came by in an enclosed car, sitting by the window, waving to the crowds. The driver had to be cruising at thirty miles or more. He was a blur as they raced by, as the nuns had us bless ourselves. Standing there stunned, I felt cheated. It must have showed, because Sister Catherine Louise came over, and told us she heard he sent a special blessing to all of us. As the faithful and young, we took her at her words and behaved on the ride home.


The more I thought about it, even at that age, I knew I wasn’t cheated. Pope John XXIII knew we, his faithful, stood out there in the frigid morning climate to greet him. By doing that we let him know our religion and numbers were strong and growing. These were my mother’s words of wisdom to me when I got home and I agreed with her.


Pope John XXIII was canonized on April 27, 2014.


Next week, I’ll discuss the time I met Eleanor Roosevelt at a resort for disable veterans, men and women who made one the ultimate sacrifice for their countries, the loss of limbs.

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Leo J. Maloney

July 20, 2015

Mission K9 Rescue Tribute Gala
Featuring Thriller/Mystery Authors



A Great Opportunity to Help American Hero Dogs

Mission K9 Rescue* is dedicated to the service of retired Military and Contract Working Dogs by providing monetary, transportation, adoption, and professional assistance for these retired Hero Dogs.


The Mission K9 Rescue Tribute Gala Featuring Thriller/Mystery Authors will benefit this worthy foundation:


Saturday, November 14, 2015


6:00 PM – 11:00 PM


Four Points by Sheraton

1 Audubon Rd., Wakefield, MA  01880


Cocktail Reception  -  Dinner  -  Live and Silent Auctions

Each table hosted by one of 27 Thriller/Mystery Authors attending

Appearances by Hero Dogs and Handlers

Emcee: Boston radio personality and singer Candy O’Terry


For anyone who is unable to attend but would like to contribute to this very worthy cause, please send a check made out to Mission K9 Rescue and mail it in care of Leo J. Maloney to P.O. Box 80048, Stoneham, MA 02180.  Or Donate Here

Please see event details at:  www.k9gala.org.


Thank you in advance for your support!


* Mission K9 Rescue is a 501(c)3 tax exempt non-profit charitable foundation.



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Season of Love answer for the Romance Review Summer Party

Did Chase step over the line when he put in for time off for Noelle?


Noelle stared at him, then turned and peered into the rear seat. Baffled, she turned back. “Suitcases? The red one looks like mine.”

“Yep, it is, one for you and one for me.”

“Mine? You packed for me?” She tugged her hat lower on her head and wondered what he was up to.

“Yes. And…I’m hijacking you for a few days. Today’s Saturday…”

She interrupted him. “I know what day it is. How did you know what to pack for me? What I’d want to wear?”

“I packed what I thought you’d need. If it’s not right we’ll buy whatever you need along the way.”

“Buy along the way. Are you mad? I didn’t put in for time off.”

Shaking his head, he placed his hand on her left thigh. “I got Renee to put in a time-off slip for you. Now you have not only tomorrow you have the entire week off. “

“The entire week—are you crazy? I didn’t have that much time left. What have you done?”

“Noelle, I checked. You had some days coming to you this year…so,” he hesitated. “I thought I’d surprise you. Did I do something wrong?”

“Yes, you did something wrong. You messed with my job, you rummaged through my things, you—you…” she growled. “I don’t have a whole week left for this year.”

“It’s all legit. Some of those days are from this year and the rest are from next year.”

“Damn it, Chase. We’re going to need to discuss boundaries. “

“I’m sorry. All I wanted to do was spend time alone with you, not get you mad.”

Taking a deep breath, she wondered how she could phrase this without causing a major all-out fight. She knew he meant well, but…”Don’t you get it? I need all my time off to plan the wedding, if I want to pull it all together in such a short time,” she said, exasperated.

“You need this time off so you’ll look like a beautiful, relaxed bride.”

Shaking her head, she realized he didn’t have a clue. “No bride is relaxed. It’s against the rules.”


Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Season-Love-Box-Merry-Holly-ebook/dp/B00X3ZAR3E/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1433606756&sr=8-3&keywords=season+of+love

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/season-of-love-box-set-merry-holly/1121860491?ean=2940151647113


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Upcoming Events

Friday, June 5, 2015
7pm to 9:30 pm Please join USA Today Bestselling author Stephanie Queen, Stacy Hoff, Gerri Brousseau, Bobbi Lerman and me, Merry Holly (AKA Marian Lanouette) celebrate the release of our anthology Season of Love.
Here’s the link to the party.



There’ll be prizes and giveaways. To celebrate the price for the anthology has been dropped to 99 cents for a limited time.

Wednesday, July 29 2015
4 pm to 9 pm at the Danversport Yacht Club in Danvers, MA.
Click here for more info:https://www.facebook.com/NewEnglandAuthorsExpo/photos/a.794648290617567.1073741837.379757262106674/794648297284233/?type=1&fref=nf&pnref=story

September 12, 2015
“The Secret World of Deep Cover Operatives”.
Sponsor and Venue for the event:
Mercedes-Benz of Burlington
80 Cambridge St.
Burlington, MA 01803
Tel# 781-229-1600

November 14, 2015

The purpose of the Mission K9 Rescue Gala is to bring awareness and raise money to support the Hero Dogs who have served our country and communities so bravely.

The foundation provides monetary, transportation, adoption and medical assistance for retired military and contract dogs.

The event is open to general public who are:
•Strong supporters of the military who want to help dogs who have fought alongside their handlers and have saved over 200 soldiers’ lives per year.
•Dog lovers who want to rescue or reunite hero dogs with their military handlers.
•Avid readers of thriller/mystery novels who would like to get to meet some of their favorite authors


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Goodreads Giveaway Enter Today

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Season of Magic by Merry Holly

Season of Magic

by Merry Holly

Giveaway ends February 01, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

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Our Readers are the Best!

Once again today, I woke up to find Season of Magic (Holiday Box Set) on the top 100 lists for both Best Seller (#48) and Hot New Releases (#27). It’s indescribable  the feeling of joy it gives all the authors who participated in this anthology.

Listed below is the Season of Magic Facebook page. If you haven’t liked it, please do. Right now we’re at 481 likes. Once we hit 500 and every milestone there after, there’ll be a drawing for prizes. The first drawing is for an autographed book from me. Your choice.




Here’s the link to the rankings on Amazon. Page down to the middle of the page, you’ll see us at #47. Next click on Holiday, than Hot New Releases to see us at #27. These numbers change hourly, but we’ve been in the top 100 on both the Best Sellers and Hot New Release lists for the last nine days. AND that’s  THANKS to all of YOU.

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Season-Magic-Holiday-Box-Set-ebook/dp/B00OZ136A6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1416581327&sr=8-1&keywords=season+of+Magic

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/season-of-magic-marian-lanouette/1120721249?ean=2940150442801


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His Name was Ben

This is an uplifting, emotional story that I recommend everyone reads.

Back Cover Blurb:

Hearing the words “it’s cancer,” threw Sara Phillips’ life into chaos, until an unexpected turn of events and a chance encounter with a stranger changed everything—his name was Ben. Based on real events, Ben and Sara discover that when all else fails, healing can come in the most unexpected ways. Chilling and heart wrenching, His Name Was Ben is a triumph over the devastating circumstances and fear experienced when faced with a terminal illness. In this narrative, the power of love conquers shadows and transforms the very nature and meaning of what it is to be fully alive. From the award winning, best-selling author of, The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap, comes a story filled with soul and passion that will leave the reader thinking about it for days after the last page is closed. 
“Paulette Mahurin compassionately renders an insightful tale about love and life in the moment, when a moment is all there is. Both ordinary and extraordinary, Sara and Ben kept me up at night rooting for them, as did Mahurin of course, a writer of exceptional heart, for her tender and wise depiction of love against all odds. A rare pleasure, His Name Was Ben is not to be missed.”—Lee Fullbright, author of The Angry Woman Suite 

“Paulette Mahurin compassionately renders an insightful tale about love and life in the moment, when a moment is all there is. Both ordinary and extraordinary, Sara and Ben kept me up at night rooting for them, as did Mahurin of course, a writer of exceptional heart, for her tender and wise depiction of love against all odds. A rare pleasure, His Name Was Ben is not to be missed.”—Lee Fullbright, author of The Angry Woman Suite 


“Against the biggest of obstacles a couple can face, the positive message is that it is never too late to start living.” –Christoph Fischer author of Sebastian.


Paulette Mahurin lives with her husband Terry and three dogs, Max, Bella, and Lady Luck in Ventura County, California. Profits from her books go to rescue dogs.


Buy link:



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Sounds  interesting doesn’t it. Today I have author Arlene Kay author of the Mantrap. I’ve read this book and loved it. Even gave it 5 stars on Amazon, I enjoyed it that much. I love series and have added this one to my listed.




            Several years ago, The New York Times reported the presumed suicide of a young banker. She was brilliant, beautiful and successful in her career. For some unknown reason she accessed the roof of a highrise to which she had no connection and plunged to her death. Ironically, she was scheduled to meet pals for brunch that very morning.

I read that and said, “Wait just a minute …”

That was the impetus for SWANN DIVE, the first book in the Boston Uncommon Series.

MANTRAP(book #2) was inspired by an obituary for a scion of Italy’s richest family who died while bicycling in South Africa. Suspicious, no? GILT TRIP (book#3, Oct’14) grew from my reaction to those annoying television ads hawking gold. I wondered how buyers would know if what they received was really gold. An article in the Boston Globe about a movement to make ugliness a protected class under the law spawned SWANN SONG,  the final book in the series. (2015).  Plot ideas abound if a writer is sensitized to them.



            I love Eja Kane, the protagonist of the SWANN Series, and readers have told me they can identify with her. She’s bright (all my heroines are), passionate, and somewhat insecure about her appearance. Most of all she is a loyal, steadfast friend to those she cares about. Eja is a mystery writer which means she is also incurably nosey. In MANTRAP, she risks losing everything she holds dear in order to find the truth.


Deming Swann: He’s the kind of guy you run into everywhere: brilliant, gorgeous, and filthy rich. (LOL) He has loved Eja since they were in pre-school, even though they sparred about almost everything, and Eja ultimately married someone else. Deming can be pompous (a touch of Mr. Darcy here), but he has a sensitive streak a mile wide. Naturally, he has fantastic hair. That’s one cliché I happily plead guilty to.



A lot of quirky characters populate my books. Some of them are reminiscent of people I have known. Confession time: it pleased me when at least one victim was remarkably like a dreaded former supervisor. (hearty LOL). Over the years, I worked in 12 different states, so I got the chance to observe a lot of humanity,”nature red in tooth and claw,” as Tennyson said.


4. CRITIQUE GROUPS/PARTNERS –I belonged to a critique group for 7 years, and it equipped me to become a published author. I still have a writing partner who helps to ground me. From those sources I learned humility and the grace to listen, improve, and accept criticism. (even when they were SO wrong and I vehemently disagreed with it).


5.GENRES I’M DRAWN TO- I am an unabashed anglophile and as such I love Shakespeare, Jane Austen, and most Brit crime writers. Thumbs down to the dreary fellows—Dickens, Hardy etc. The dour Russians don’t do much for me either.

Among contemporary American writers, I adore Joseph Heller, William F. Buckley and Gore Vidal. I also have a secret crush on Nelson DeMille. They all write witty, snarky characters and make me envious of their vast talent. Elizabeth Peters made me appreciate how effective the alliance of romance, sprightly dialogue and mystery can be.


6. Writing Organizations-I belong to Sisters in Crime; Romance Writers of America; International Thriller Writers; and Kiss of Death, as well as my local mother ship, the Cape Cod Writers’ Center. I’ve learned so much from all of them.


7. PRECIS OF MANTRAP(Book #2 of Boston Uncommons Series)

Was Dario Peters’ death a tragic biking accident, or cold-blooded murder? He was   rich, arrogant and cruel but the apple of his doting grandma’s eye. She begs amateur sleuths Eja Kane and Deming Swann to come to Cape Cod to investigate. They can’t resist even though their relationship and their lives are imperiled.

Read more about Arlene at the link below

Buy Links:




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Season of Magic Holiday Box Set

I’m excited to announce Season of Magic (holiday box set) is now up for sale.

As a way to give back, the
writers of this set have agreed to donate 10% of the
proceeds of sales during the first week to St. Jude’s
Children’s Research Hospital. The set features five
holiday tales (Christmas and Chanukah), selling for 99
cents. So fire up your Kindles and help us make a sizeable
donation to a worthy cause.

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Season-Magic-Holiday-Box-Set-ebook/dp/B00OZ136A6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1414592412&sr=8-1&keywords=season+of+magic+holiday+box+set


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Interview with author Anna James


What inspired your latest book?

The idea of what would happen if something in your past, something you’d do just about anything to keep secret, was exposed. What impact would it have on your life, on the lives of your family? Friends?

What is your typical day like?

I get up in the morning and get the coffe going, let the dog out, feed the dog, consume copious amounts of caffeine, take the dog for a walk, go to work. In the evenings there’s dinner, another dog walk and then its time for writing!

How much time do you spend promoting your books?  What works best for you?

Not as much time as I should and more time than I’d like to! When I have print books out I do book signings but that doesn’t work as well for ebooks. Sometimes I do personal appearances and speak to book clubs about my book or on the topic of writing. I haven’t found any one venue that works particularly well – yet. But I’ll keep at it.

How has your experience with self-publishing been?

As of today, I have only published with small press publishers. I may consider selfpublishing in the future.


Where do you get the ideas for your stories?

My stories are about conquering life’s trials and my ideas generally come from brainstorming with other writer friends on the topic.

What advice do you have for other authors wanting to self-publish?

I’d say do your homework and make sure to hire quality people to edit, create covers, etc. There’s a lot that’s involved in the process and you need to make sure to get it right.

Do you have critique partners?

Yes, we have a group of 5 of us. Since we all write something different it works out well.

What is your favorite dessert/food?

Just about anything chocolate!

How likely are people you meet to end up in your next book?

I don’t usually create characters based on people I know, at least not on a conscious level. I’m more likely to use assorted personality traits from many people to create one character.

Was your road to publication fraught with peril or a walk in the park?

Definitely not a walk in the park, but not fraught with peril either. I’ve been rejected, too many times to count at this stage of the game, but I don’t give up.

Give us an elevator pitch for your book.

A secret she must keep… A man she can’t resist.

Do you have a view in your writing space?  What does your space look like? 

I don’t have a dedicated space. If I need complete solitude I take my portable desk into my bedroom and lock the door. So far it has worked for me.

Tell us about your hero.  Give us one of his strengths and one of his weaknesses.

Max is a hard worker (he built his own business from the ground up). He gives back to those who have helped him and he comes to Nicole’s rescue (the heroine) not once but twice. His weakness is he doesn’t trust women (Wait until you find out why! Max also has a little secret he’d like to keep hidden).

Tell us about your heroine.  Give us one of her strengths and one of her weaknesses.

Nicole has a strong sense of family and would do just about anything for her sisters. Her weakness is she always chooses the wrong type of man to get involved with. Most of the time she ends up with a broken heart but one man, in particular, cost her much more.

What genres are you drawn to as a reader?

Romantic suspense, contemporary, historical, and sci-fi to name just a few.

Do you prefer to read in the same genres you write in or do you avoid reading that genre? Why?

I write contemporary romance with elements of suspense, but I like reading a variety of romance genres. Why? Because there are a LOT of great stories out there and I don’t like to limit myself to anyone kind.

How far do you plan ahead?

In terms of my writing, I’ve written one novel,  have another novella in The Forever Yours trilogy planned for this year and I want to finish my other WIP before the end of the year as well.

Do you have any words of inspiration for aspiring authors?

Believe in yourself and never, ever give up on your dream.

What did you want to be when you were a child?  Did you always know you wanted to be a writer?

I can’t even remember what I wanted to be. It changed so many times, but I can tell you a writer was not one of the careers I’d imagined for myself as a child or even as a new adult. It wasn’t until I was in my thirties that I even considered it.

Do you or have you belonged to a writing organization?  Which one?  Have they helped you with your writing?  How?

I belong to the following writing organizations:

  • The Connecticut Chapter of Romance Writers of America (CTRWA)
  • Charter Oak Romance Writers (CORW)
  • RWA Contemporary Romance Writers

Have they helped – you betcha! These are some of the most supportive, inspiring people I have ever met and I can honestly say I wouldn’t be where I am today as a writer without them. How have they helped? Mentoring programs, critique groups, words of advice, and inspiring guest speakers at the monthly meetings, just to name a few.

Please tell my readers a little bit about your book. 

It’s filled with passion and romance, mystery and suspense! Here’s a little snippet to whet your appetite:


Passion ignites between Nicole Bradford and Max Paradis the moment they lay eyes on each other, but despite the sizzling attraction and Max’s to-die-for-kisses, Nicole is reluctant to get involved. She’s been burned by love before.

Carlo had been her ideal mate but the dream became a nightmare when his drug smuggling past was revealed.

Now all Nicole wants is to get on with her life and keep the secret she’s been hiding for the last six years.

Still, how can she resist the handsome and sexy Max when he’s everything she’s ever wanted in a man? And what will she do when Carlo returns and threatens to expose her ugly past?

Nicole will have to trust Max with the truth if she wants to win his love and get Carlo out of her life for good. If she doesn’t Carlo could destroy everything that matters most to her.



Describe the genre of this particular title, and is this the only genre you write in? 

This is a contemporary romance with elements of mystery and suspense. I’d say I write contemporary romance with verying elements of suspense / intrigue / mystery.










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