THE CONTEST IS CLOSED. THE WINNER IS Lisa Rayns. CONGRATULATIONS!!
KAREN: With six children and a husband to care for, this multitask gal, has time to spins tales of intrigue and unforgettable love. Let's welcome Sarah Ballance! She's here to share some ghoulish delights to snack on while you indulge in your favorite Halloween story. She's also giving away a paperback copy HAWTHORNE to one lucky trick or treater (Worldwide offer). This book has received some raving reviews. You'll want to add this one to your goody bag. So don't be late to enter the giveaway! CONTEST END OCT. 12TH AT MIDNIGHT.
I am so excited to be here! My haunting paranormal novella, HAWTHORNE, is extra bunches of fun during the Halloween season, and because it’s a sweet romance it’s perfect for everyone. And it’s for that reason I’m pleased to offer a PAPERBACK COPY giveaway to one lucky reader (Worldwide). If you’d like a chance to win, please be sure to leave your email address when you comment. I’d also love for you to sneak over to my blog @ http://sarahballance.wordpress.com/ and follow me. I give away a $10 gift card to one of my subscribers every week, so it’s a not a bad place to hang out. And I seldom bite. Ahem. Anyway, more on HAWTHORNE in just a bit. First, there’s food!
Halloween is a favorite holiday around my house, but as much as I love horror and terrifying things, we keep things fun. (But just wait until the kids are older. Just WAIT! LOL.) We have a party each year on Halloween, and thanks to our homeschooling gig it’s an all day affair complete with spider webs so thick we can hardly walk through the family room. Of course, everyone’s favorite part is the food, and today I’d love to share a couple of our favorite recipes.
This simple twist on deviled eggs is a blast to make. To begin, boil eggs until hard. Then crack the shells in several places but do NOT remove the shell. Instead, place the cracked eggs in a bowl of water dyed red with food coloring and leave them in the refrigerator overnight. The next day, when you peel the eggs they should be deliciously “bloodshot.” Slice eggs in half and remove the innards, then smash the yolks with mayonnaise and relish, if desired. Mix with green food coloring, then refill the eggs. Top with a sliced black olive to complete the eyeball look.
THE EYES HAVE IT
Yes, more eyes. There’s something extra creepy about having your food stare back at you! This easy appetizer can be offered in two ways—one for more sophisticated palates, and one for those who prefer to keep it basic. The more convincing version is to top glistening marinated mozzarella balls with thinly sliced olive “pupils.” If the marinade is too tangy for your crowd, make bite size cubes from blocks of mozzarella or monterey jack cheese. Cut off the corners to round them off—someone is sure to enjoy the niblets!
This inversion of a sandwich wrap is just as easy as it is disgusting. To begin, slice a tortilla or piece of pita bread in strips. Wrap each strip with ham or another lunch meat until you’ve rolled it into a fingers-width. Add a “fingernail” with a small piece of cheese. For extra fun, dye mayo or ranch dressing red with food coloring for dipping.
GHOSTLY PRETZEL STICKS
Melt white chocolate, then dip large pretzel sticks halfway down their length. Repeat several times until there’s a thick layer of chocolate over each one. After the chocolate sets, use black icing or gel to add two eyes and a mouth to complete this sweet ghostly treat.
And now that you’ve indulged your “spooky” tooth, how about a look at my featured book?
Remember, one reader will win a paperback copy, so for a treat that’s scary-good, be sure to enter to win!
After a terrifying encounter with the unexplained, it took ten years and the news of her grandmother’s passing for Emma Grace Hawthorne to return to her childhood home. She sought peace in saying a proper goodbye, but what she found was an old love, a sordid family history, and a wrong only she could right.
Living in the shadow of Hawthorne Manor, Noah Garrett never forgot about Emma Grace. In a house full of secrets, his search for missing documents revealed a truth that could cost him everything. What he found gave Emma the freedom to walk away from the mansion, her heart free and clear, but at what price to Noah?
GOODREADS | ASTRAEA PRESS | AMAZON KINDLE | B&N NOOK
HAWTHORNE | EXCERPT
The car slowed to a stop and a decade’s worth of memories tumbled onto the sun-blanched asphalt.
The hand-painted sign hadn’t changed in years. In the thick, damp air filling the Louisiana landscape, the wood display remain inexplicably unaffected. There it sat—every meticulously scripted letter as crisp and clean as the stark white walls of the manor it lauded, oblivious to the passage of time.
Emma Hawthorne tensed in the seat of the Mustang convertible, staring at her past with ice sluicing her spine. Anywhere else, the view would have been gorgeous. The drive, lined on both sides with live oak laden with Spanish moss, was the South personified. At the end, Hawthorne Manor held court. Pristine, proud, the boastful antebellum home beamed, lording over its acreage.
But it harbored the unspeakable. No amount of time could erase what happened to her on the other side of the expanse of green lawn. Nothing could change what she’d seen there. Some might say she was crazy—that she’d imagined or invented the whole ordeal—but her scars were all the proof she needed. Whether the shadows lurking behind the façade of the picturesque plantation were real or born of an overactive imagination, there was no way she was going back into that house.
Especially not for a dead woman.
Sparing a glance in the rearview, Emma steeled herself against a trembling in her hands that threatened to overtake her body. She released a pent-up breath, her heart settling into a less acrobatic rhythm at the thought of leaving. She didn’t have to stay here.
Let the South win this one. She was going home.
A split second after she decided to go, something caught her eye. She blinked, trying to see through the swaying canopy of leaves and moss, certain a figure stood atop the widow’s walk straddling the roofline of the house. But no one—
Something brushed the car, rocking it. Swallowing panic, Emma tried to tear her focus from Hawthorne Manor, but fear kept her from looking anywhere else. Time and distance hadn’t done her any favors; she was a fool for coming anywhere near this place, much less with the ragtop down.
The car rocked harder. The something refused to be ignored.
Fighting the grip of panic tightening her throat–fighting the ghosts of her past—Emma forced herself to look away from the house, toward the intrusion over her left shoulder.
The first thing she saw was an aged set of gnarled fingers resting on the door, blue automotive paint showing through an ugly translucence.
The second was the face—withered, centurion, and expressionless. Haunting.
CONTEST: If you’d like a chance to win a copy, please comment with your email address! Thanks, and I look forward to hearing from you! Thanks so much for allowing me to be a part of your “Haunting” day! CONTEST ENDS: OCT 12 AT MIDNIGHT. GOOD LUCK!**Offer for Worldwide except if shipping is more than $15. The author reserve the right to substitute an ebook.
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