To Say Goodbye – Blog Tour

SECOND-CHANCE ROMANCE

Title: To Say Goodbye
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: September 24, 2016
Publisher: Hot Tree Publishing

Cover Designer: Claire Smith

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Feisty Sophia never shies away from life. Playful, romantic, connected—her marriage was the thing of fairy tales. But when tragedy strikes, Sophia is left to pick up the pieces of her life.After leaving the army, Jackson is ready to start afresh. But when he returns home, his life spirals out of control.

As Sophia and Jackson find themselves in each other, they start to see redemption is possible. Trying to piece together a new life, they must answer the question:  Should they forge a life together and say goodbye to their pasts completely, or should they loyally go their separate ways to avoid heartache?

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My Super Nephews

If you are following this blog you know I have just returned from a trip to Portugal. I am a proud Lisboeta (native of Lisbon) and I didn’t move to the US until I was an adult. Leaving behind your family and friends is not an easy thing to do but until a few years ago I was always able to go visit them about once a year. Unfortunately with the prices of airline tickets skyrocketing (pun intended), my visits have become rarer and rarer. The last time I went to visit was over three years ago and it was not under the best circumstances.

My visit this time was very short but at least, I did get to spend some quality time with my mother, sister and nephews. I even got to see some family members I had not seen in over 30 years (yes, so I am old. Live with it!). And of course, I got to eat a LOT of the wonderful (underestimated) Portuguese cuisine (more stories to come on this). My expanding waistline is here to prove it.

The best part though (besides spending time with mom and sis) was getting to re-acquaint myself with my two nephews. These two guys are great. Smart, good-looking kids that can go far as long as they don’t sabotage themselves (which I hope they don’t). Here’s my dedication to my two super-awesome nephews!

The oldest one is a self-proclaimed nerd with enormous (albeit still untapped) potential and a heart of gold. The youngest one is a self-proclaimed ladies-man (LOL) with more energy than the Energizer bunny and also a heart of gold. They are both handsome (don’t let it go to your head) and very smart and I know that they will prove their father wrong by turning into amazing men and make their fantastic mother (my sister, of course. Good genes run in the family) very, very proud.

I had such a good time teasing the youngest and talking shop with the oldest (he is an aspiring writer, as well). My heart swelled to see how they both treat their mom who has gone through hell these past three years and support their grandma. I have no doubt they will both become great successes. They just have to believe in themselves and make it happen.

I hope to see you guys again soon. Make me proud grasshoppers, make me proud!

The Angel

The rain fell incessantly over the land as if trying to wash away all the sin and pain in the world. People walked under umbrellas and ducked under trees trying to stay dry as they visited the gravesites of their departed loved ones. Some had tears that rolled down their cheeks and mixed with the water from the skies above. Others kept their eyes on the ground as if afraid to face the harsh reality of a lost loved one. Still others chatted amiably but quietly as they avoided mud and puddles on the saturated grounds. Flowers adorned the arms of some, others walked empty-handed. One carried a teddy bear and a heart-shaped cushion. Those would be soaked before the turn of the hour, she noted with a heavy heart. Death was not kind for the living or the inanimate objects that adorned their tombstones. Even flowers lost their petals and drooped piteously like overwrought souls pining for the dead.

Gracefully and serene she sat, a faint smile on her lips, a slight tilt of the head. The rain didn’t bother her even though she hoped, for the sake of the living, that it would stop. Her white dress fell to the ground in a cascade of folds, forever frozen in time, wet but never soaked, lifelike but not alive. Her right hand held a bouquet of blushing roses to her lap and the left touched the black cold stone with such tenderness those who walked by had to look twice to make sure they had not seen her move. Behind her two white wings unfolded, sheltering her body from the wind and framing her beauty with haunting grace. The Angel – for so was she known to all who visited the graveyard – had not been there long but she reigned over the quiet bleakness of the place and there was not a single patron that wouldn’t stop for a minute or two to admire the beauty of her lines, the serenity she inspired. A tragedy had summoned her there, commissioned by the surviving members of a family decimated in a terrible fire. Now, she sat on their graves, guarding them and offering them the company the living couldn’t afford to give.

Passersby think of her a stone monument to the love a family felt for those who had so tragically lost their lives; but she was so much more. For beneath all that pristine white and coldness of stone, there was a heart beating; a heart that beat to the sound of grieving humans and restless souls; a heart so full of love, she was willing to waste away her days watching over the dead. Death was lonely at first. As loved ones stream away from the burial site, there is a moment when heart-wrenching loneliness strikes. For those single moments the Angel waits, ready to comfort both those who leave and those who can’t. One day her spirit will leave that body of stone and alight somewhere else where she will once again comfort the dead and the living.

As the sun goes down on a dreary day and the mourners hurry to leave the realm of the dead into their brighter side of life, there she remains quiet and beautiful watching over those who are left behind.