Wednesday, November 18, 2015

free short story: "thankful for you" by karen rock

On tour with Prism Book Tours.

Today, I'm happy to be a stop on the Heartwarming Thanksgiving Tour! I love promoting clean reads, and the books in the Harlequin Heartwarming line fit the bill. Throughout this tour, we'll be highlighting 13 FREE short stories by beloved Harlequin Heartwarming authors that will be available from Harlequin during November. All Heartwarming titles are 30% OFF during November from Harlequin as well! Use code HEART1115.


Thankful for You by Karen Rock


Way back when, Hunter Boone thought he and Josie Stephens had something that would last forever. Then she got her ticket out of town and took off—alone. The hurt nearly tore him apart. By the time Josie realized she'd made a mistake, Hunter had already married.

Now Josie's back in Stonewall Crossing, and while instant fire flares between them, she can't come between the now single dad and his son. As the whole town gets ready for Christmas, Josie finds it hard to avoid Hunter. No matter how much he tempts her with the promise of a future together, she has to tell herself—for her own survival—that relationships just aren't her thing…

Maggie James has worked hard to get over her commitment phobic ex, Lt. Eric Langley. Yet old feelings resurface when they’re reunited to put on a Thanksgiving dinner for foster children displaced by their group home’s fire. She still loves Eric, but she’d grown up vowing to have the traditional, nuclear family her loving parents provided and won’t accept anything less. This time around, does she dare give them a second chance?

After watching his vibrant mother retreat from life following his firefighter father’s tragic death, Lt. Eric Langley vowed never to inflict that pain on anyone, especially Maggie. When she’d begun talking kids, marriage, it’d nearly killed him to break things off. But how could he take the risks his job required, if he worried about a family counting on his safety? Although he’d shut away his pain when he and Maggie had broken up, his old feelings rush back after one glimpse of her beautiful face. He should want to avoid her, but feels thankful for this time together instead. Is it possible some surprising wisdom from the children he saved, could rescue him, too?

Read it HERE!

Guest Post by Karen Rock

Rushing headlong to make a deadline for an upcoming Harlequin Heartwarming, HERS FOR KEEPS, I received an email from our Senior Editor, Victoria Curran, subject line: Thanksgiving Short Read. Intrigued, I bypassed the oh-so-tempting Bed Bath and Beyond savings offer and opened her note. Was I ever glad that I did! Our marketing department approved a plan for select Heartwarming authors to write eight thousand word short reads that would be free downloads all through November.

I was honored to be asked and immediately said, “YES”! Then, reality set in. I still had over fifty thousand words on my current WIP to write in just five weeks. How could I also create and pen an additional story that would be due during the same time period? I took a long hard look at my calendar (I always write my writing goals in it), and immediately started penciling in writing days on the weekends. I also extended my work day into evening hours (buh-bye to America’s Got Talent and the start of fall TV line-up… sigh*) But, in the end, it was worth it and my Thanksgiving Short Read, THANKFUL FOR YOU, was born. I’m absolutely thrilled with the second chance love story I wrote for a secondary character in another romance I’d set in the Adirondacks, RAISING THE STAKES. In that book, two best friends co-own a diner. I wanted to give Maggie James, a woman who admires the gutsy gals she grew-up watching in black and white films with her grandmother, the happily-ever-after she deserved.

From her retro, vintage style, independent spirit, and traditional values of wanting a nuclear family, Maggie is a lot like her idol, Katharine Hepburn. She’s strong willed and knows what she wants, and what she wanted from her ex, firefighter Lt. Eric Langley, was her white picket fence dream. Instead, he broke her heart six months ago by ending their two-year relationship when she’d begun talking marriage and kids. Now he’s back, and talking kids again, only this time it’s to ask for her help in putting on a dinner for the displaced foster kids after their group home burned. It was fun to imagine how Maggie, who admires strong, traditional woman, would handle herself as she works with Eric during a holiday that makes everyone grateful for the ones they love and appreciate the value of family.

Lt. Eric Langley is carrying on his generations-old family legacy of fighting fires. After watching his vibrant mother retreat from life following his father’s death, he’d vowed never to inflict that pain on anyone, especially Maggie. When she’d begun talking kids, marriage, it’d nearly killed him to break things off. But how could he take the risks his job required, if he worried about a family counting on his safety? The dynamic of putting together two great people, like Eric and Maggie, who are so perfect for each other but can’t see how to overcome their obstacles, made this an engrossing story to write. I hope you’ll feel the same way when you read it.

I’m thankful for many things this holiday season and at the top of the list is being a part of the wonderful Heartwarming family! If you are interested in learning more about me or my books, please stop by or click on the follow button beneath my picture on Amazon’s author page You can also find me on twitter at or facebook at Happy Holidays everyone!

Karen Rock is an award-winning YA and adult contemporary author. She holds a master’s degree in English and worked as an ELA instructor before becoming a full-time author. Most recently, her Harlequin Heartwarming novels have won the 2015 National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award and the 2015 Booksellers Best Award. When she's not writing, Karen loves scouring estate sales, cooking and hiking. She lives in the Adirondack Mountain region with her husband, daughter and Cavalier King Charles spaniels.

Other Heartwarming Titles by this Author

Wish Me Tomorrow His Hometown Girl
Someone Like You A League of Her Own
Raising the Stakes Winter Wedding Bells


Don't miss any of these FREE novellas or the extra tour content! Stop by each of the tour stops each day:

11/2: Snow Day Baby by Amy Vastine
Singing Librarian Books, The Power of Words, & Katie's Clean Book Collection

11/4: Wedding at Turkey Run by Liz Flaherty
My Love for Reading Keeps Growing, Babs Book Bistro, & Heidi Reads...

11/6: Her Thanksgiving Soldier by Leigh Riker
Letters from Annie (Douglass) Lima, Mel's Shelves, & Brooke Blogs

11/9: Mr. Right All Along by Jen Snow
Katie's Clean Book CollectionMin Reads and Reviews, & Love thy Shelf

11/11: Falling for the Cowboy by Sophia Sasson
Kindle and Me, The Power of Words, & Colorimetry

11/13: The Marriage Gift by Tara Taylor Quinn
deal sharing aunt, Babs Book Bistro, & Brooke Blogs

11/16: Heart of a Hero by Pamela Tracy
Writing Pearls, Wishful Endings, & Waiting For Wentworth

11/18: Thankful for You by Karen Rock
Christian Chick's Thoughts, Getting Your Read On, & Love, Laughter, Friendship

11/20: Autumn at Jasper Lake by Carol Ross
Reading Is My SuperPower, I Am A Reader, & Colorimetry

11/23: The Firefighter’s Promise by Kate James
Canadian Book Addict, Mel's Shelves, & Beck Valley Books

11/24: Wedding of His Dreams by Cari Lynn Webb
Bookworm Lisa, Kindle and Me, & Zerina Blossom's Books

11/25: The Sweetheart Tree by Rula Sinara
The Written Adventure, Reading Is My SuperPower, & Writing Pearl

11/26: Married by Thanksgiving by Melinda Curtis
Heidi Reads..., Love, Laughter, Friendship, & Singing Librarian Books 

11/29: Grand Finale
11/30: Facebook Party


Goodreads Giveaway

13 Harlequin Heartwarming Books
Enter on Goodreads HERE.

Pinterest Giveaway

Pin one or both of these images to spread the word and enter to win this adorably festive Thanksgiving Table Set:

Pinterest Prize includes: four reversible, quilted placemats, four matching napkins, hand-painted matching napkin rings, matching table runner, matching quilted hot pad/trivet, floral centerpiece in pot, and hand-crafted pilgrim pair.
- Enter via the Rafflecopter below
- Open to US/CAN only
- Ends December 4th

Tour Giveaway

Grand Prize: Harlequin Heartwarming Year Subscription (Provided by Harlequin and to US/CAN only)
$40 VISA card (US only)
13-Book Heartwarming Prize Pack: The Best Laid Plans, Back to McGuffy's, If I Loved You, Love, Lies & Mistletoe, First Comes Marriage, Once Upon A Marriage, Small Town Secrets, Winter Wedding Bells, If Not For A Bee, When The Right One Comes Along, Wedding of His Dreams, After The Silence, and A Memory Away (print copies if US, ebooks if international)
9-Book Prize Pack: The Best Laid Plans, If I Loved You, Love, Lies & Mistletoe, First Comes Marriage, Once Upon A Marriage, When The Right One Comes Along, Winter Wedding Bells, If Not For A Bee, and After The Silence (print copies if US, ebooks if international)
Ends December 4th

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  1. Thank you so much for hosting me today, Becky! Your website is gorgeous :)

  2. Wow, Becky, my first time here, too, and I like it. You won me with the name of the blog :)

    Karen, love, love, loved your story.


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