Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Book Tour: Guardians of the Heart

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.


Guardians of the Heart
(Secrets on Sterling Street, #2)
by Loree Lough
Historical Romance
Paperback & ebook, 272 pages
August 3rd 2015 by Whitaker House

Nell Holstrom wanted no part of her grandfather's barren gold mine that had taken the lives of her mother, father, and younger brother; even if there may still be hidden wealth inside. Instead, she went to Denver and took a job as housekeeper at the old Stone Hill Inn.

Asa Stone was barely more than a boy when his father dragged him and his brothers to fight with Colonel John Chivington. But Asa refused to participate in the raid on the peaceful Cheyenne and Arapahoe; and when the smoke cleared, his father and brother lay among the slaughtered. Besieged by guilt, Asa wandered the West for years before returning to Denver to rebuild the old inn he'd inherited. 

Together, Nell and Asa work hard to restore Stone Hill. But when disaster hits the inn, Asa retreats into despair and Nell is forced to return to her family's mine. Asa faces the hard fact: He'll never be the man Nell deserves. Can he overcome the dark secrets of his past? And will Nell still love him when she learns the truth?

The First Book in the Series

Currency of the Heart
(Secrets on Sterling Street, #1)
by Loree Lough
Historical Romance
Paperback & ebook, 256 pages
January 1st 2015 by Whitaker House

Young widow Shaina Sterling hates living a lie. Desperate to keep bill collectors from the door, she secretly sells valuable possessions piece by piece, and hopes Denver’s elite never discover that his lavish lifestyle left her a near pauper.

She’s unaware that as her husband lay dying, successful rancher Sloan Remington made him a promise. And Sloan guards her secrets
as carefully as he looks after her safety.

When fire devours Sterling Hall, leaving her homeless and penniless, he brings her to Remington Ranch to manage his household. His kindness makes Shaina beholden to him … and threatens to expose the secret that could destroy him.

Will trials and tragedies bring Sloan and Shaina together?
Or will secrets—and the cost of exposing them—drive them apart forever?

About the Author

With 105 books (5,000,000+ copies in circulation!), best-selling author Loree Lough's stories have been compared to those by Nicholas Sparks, and she has been dubbed by readers and reviewers as “a gifted writer whose stories touch hearts and change lives.”

With a long list of industry awards, it isn't likely this prolific author will ever retire...not even to her cozy li'l cabin in the Allegheny Mountains. She loves to hear from her readers and personally answers every letter sent to http://www.loreelough.com/.

They Called Her Shoog by Loree Lough

Growing up, I lived in a quiet Wisconsin neighborhood, where ice skating and St. Bernards pulling sleds over snowy streets were routine winter sights—at least, when the sun was up. After supper, moonlight illuminated elaborate snow forts, where kid-fierce snowball fights might have lasted until bedtime…if soggy mittens and wet socks hadn't driven us inside, instead.

Summers found us sprinkler hopping, hop-scotch scribbling, and riding bikes in the empty school parking lot. After dark, it took some serious concentration to win at Statues and Hide-and-Seek, because it wasn't easy, standing still and keeping quiet…while swatting mosquitoes….

The summer I turned ten, a pretty little redheaded girl moved into the house on the corner. Her parents and older siblings called her Shoog…and it was Shoog who introduced the kids on our block to a whole new way to spend our summer days:

Picking apples in her grandfather's orchard.

Every morning at precisely 7 a.m., Gramps pulled into Shoog's driveway, the smoke from his burled-wood pipe curling from the driver's door window as we clamored for a wall seat in the pickup's bed. (Getting stuck in the middle with nothing to hold onto but the hope you wouldn't end up in Skinny Jimmy's lap made for an adventuresome ride, indeed!) Upon arrival in the orchard, Gramps doled out flimsy bushels…and a growly reminder that for every full basket we delivered, we'd earn a dime!

Those first few days, we figured Shoog rode up front in the truck—and never picked fruit—because, well, she was the owner's granddaughter. From her perch on the hood of the rusty old truck, she'd cheer as overflowing baskets were dragged over to Gramps for inspection, and applauded as the dimes were doled out. And when Little Bobby (who was a head taller and outweighed us all by fifty pounds) bit into an apple and saw the other half of a worm he hadn't swallowed, it was Shoog who patted his back as he tried valiantly not to throw up.

Leave it to Web-toed Tommy to ask Gramps why Shoog never joined in the fun: "Because," the old man quietly explained, "Shoog has leukemia." I don't think a one of us knew what "leukemia" was, so we went back to climbing trees and shaking apples from the branches. But something about Gramps's tone and expression told us it wasn't a good thing, and on the way home that day, there wasn’t a bit of the usual tomfoolery in the back of Gramps' truck.

Back on familiar turf, we scattered to show our moms the shiny coins we'd earned, and, after wolfing down bologna or PB&J sandwiches, we took up our customary positions under the big tree in Marty's front yard, playing Telephone and I'm Thinking of a Number Between while listening for the tell-tale jingle of the ice cream man's handlebar bell. All except for Shoog, that is. While we lapped melting vanilla from our fingers, she was inside, resting up from the morning outing.

It was a sweltering Friday in August when, while gnawing that last bite of chocolate from my frozen treat, I got a bright idea: If we all went home and searched for loose change in our sofas, we'd have enough to buy an ice cream for Shoog on Monday! The kids agreed, but their moms had other plans: Sammy got stuck mowing the lawn, and it was Clara's turn to fold laundry. Bed-making, dishwashing, furniture-dusting and sibling-sitting took precedence over cushion diving. And yet, miraculously, we managed to get our chores finished and collect enough to buy a cold treat for our frail friend.

On Monday morning, we assembled at the end of her driveway to wait for Gramps' truck, and struck an oath not to tell Shoog about the surprise we'd deliver to her front door when he brought us home again. Ten minutes passed, then twenty. It wasn't like Gramps to be late. Gary, the oldest and bravest of us knocked on Shoog's front door…

…and some nice lady we'd never seen before said "Sorry, kids; Shoog died last night."

Thanks to our mothers' real version of Telephone, we learned that Shoog's real name was Grace, and that if she'd lived, Grace would have turned eleven that following Friday. Diagnosed with the horrible
disease at the tender age of eight, she remained her sweet, uncomplaining self, no matter what tests or treatments the doctors threw at her, inspiring the nickname that stuck. They called her Shoog…but her birth name was well-chosen, for she epitomized grace.

Tiny yet fun-loving, quiet and delicate, Shoog made a bigger and more lasting impression on me than just about anyone I can name. To this day, I wish I'd thought of a way to get closer to her while I had the chance, that I'd come up with the "let's buy her a treat" at the start of summer, that after returning home from a day in her grandfather's orchard, that I'd rushed through my chores for no reason other than to spend a little time with her.

That summer, I learned not to put off important things, even those that don't seem all that important in the middle of life's hustle-bustle…and I learned to remember the people, like Shoog, who made a difference.

Tour Schedule


Grand Finale

Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card
Print copy of Guardians of the Heart
Kindle copy of Guardians of the Heart (to be gifted through Amazon)
Open internationally
Ends August 29th

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