I know you’re jealous. Admit it. :) I’m the lucky one today and I am verra thrilled to be the caboose of the multi-blog scavenger hunt for sister TWRP debut author (and I’m proud to say, my friend!), Mackenzie Crowne’s Gift of the Realm. We’re doing an interview and she’s here to tell you more about why you will want to read this book—besides that enchanting and haunting cover and the scrumptious Colin! So let’s get this ranch jumping! Please give a Ranch welcome to Mac Crowne! *indicates the screen door in a grand gesture…gawks…at…*
Donovan O’Brian Quinn be me name.
Calisa: Wha-? Wait a minute…
Donovan: I’m pleased to make yer acquaintance. The lovely Calisa was kind enough to invite me to visit today, to tell ye about me book. Gift of the Realm, it’s called. Oh, I didn’t do the actual writing of the thing. Mackenzie Crowne had that honor, but the story is mine. I’m the star, ye see.
Calisa: Uh-huh… *glances around for the hidden camera then back at the dog talking? to her* Hello? *a talking dog! pinches her arm and winces* Am I being Punk’d? I thought Mac was supposed to be here today. Where’s Ashton? Oh, well. Who am I to turn away a talking dog? Welcome to the ranch, Donovan, was it?
Donovan: I know what ye be thinking’. A dog? Really? Dogs don’t type and they certainly don’t blog.
Calisa: Of course you know “what I be thinking.’ I just expressed that. What I want to know is…how?
Donovan: Well now, I’m here to tell ye, if ye hadn’t noticed already, an ordinary dog I’m not. An Irish wolfhound I be, living in the world of folklore and fairies in the mystical village of Dunhaven, Ireland, where strange and wonderful happenings are the norm. My people are Halflings, ye see. Ye might have heard of them. Keely and Colin Quinn be their names.
Calisa: Actually, I have— Ooh! That’s beautiful! I’ve always dreamed of going to Ireland and seeing a cliff like this one. *sighs*
*Calisa jumps from her reverie*
Donovan: *Yelp* Oh, Mac! Ye frightened a full seven years off me life. I didn’t see ye there. Tis the author herself, me friends. Say hello, Mac.
Calisa: Mac, what a pleasant surprise to see you! *eyeballs Donovan suspiciously*
Mac: Hello, everyone, nice to meet you. What are you up to, Donovan? Sorry, Calisa. I hope he’s not bothering you.
Calisa: Not at—
Donovan: I like that! Invited, I was. Calisa and I are having a wee visit. The lass smells of sweet, cinnamon candy, don’t ye know. I like that in a human.
Calisa: I didn’t actually know it was going to be Donovan, Mac. But since he’s here… He does say such kind, flattering things about me. :) And I do enjoy spicy cinnamon now and again…which Donovan noticed. Flattery…
Mac: Yes, she is a sweetheart. *winks at Calisa* A wee visit, huh?
Calisa: I don’t mind, really. And you are a sweet darlin, Mac. And he was about to tell me some of his story which I’d love to hear! I’m sure my Ranch guests are all ears, as well. I mean, how often does one have a chance to *chat* with a talking Irish dog?
Donovan: Aye. I’m sharing a bit of our story with the lads and lasses who’ve popped in for a visit. It’s a fine tale ye’ve woven, even if it tis a romance.
Mac: Keely and Colin don’t seem to mind Gift of the Realm is a romance.
Calisa: My guests and I LOVE romance! *bobs head back and forth between Mac and Donovan wondering if either are really listening to her*
Donovan: Hah! Humans, even those with fairie blood running through their veins, are silly with it when they find their one true mate. But I didn’t say I minded. After all, it’s a tale full of curses and fairies, and an ancient ring of stones. And then of course, there’s me. Who doesn’t love a tale includin’ a charmin’ Irish wolfhound?
Calisa: *raises hand, whispers* I do.
Mac: I’m not sure Keely would use the word charming. Not when you have a habit of digging up her lilacs.
Donovan: Ah, that. Well, I’m a dog, ain’t I? It’s what we do. And Keely doesn’t mind so much, not when her black wolf has a paw in that bit of mischief, more often than not.
Mac: Hmmm. *grins* She does have a soft spot for that Halfling of hers.
Donovan: And isn’t that how it should be, I ask ye? No matter. She can’t stay mad at me. Not for long, anyway. I helped her solve the mystery of the ring, after all.
Mac: Yes, you did, but you don’t want to share too much with your new friends here. You’ll spoil the story for them.
Donovan: Aye. Ye have a point. Still, we might tease them with a bit of our tail. An excerpt, I believe it’s called. Ye have one, don’t ye? And are ye still running yer scavenger hunt contest, over at yer own web home? The one where me friends have a chance at winning a free copy of Gift of the Realm and a $25 Amazon card?
*Calisa’s ears perk at this idea*
Mac: I do have an excerpt, and the Virtual Scavenger Hunt runs through today.
Donovan: And I’m thinkin’ ye should give away a free copy of our story right here, to one of the lovely Calisa’s friends.
Mac: That’s an excellent idea, Donovan. I’m glad you thought of it.
Calisa: *claps hands and hops in joy*
Donovan: Then what are ye waiting for? Give me friends the chains, so they can find out more about me…I mean, yer book.
Mac: I think you mean the links.
Donovan: *snort* Dog, remember?
Mac: *laughs* Here are the excerpt and the links. And don’t stay too long. You’re scheduled for a grooming today.
Donovan: *growl* I thought to chat with me new friends a bit. There be dog lovers here, ye know. I’ll be gifting our book to one of them, after I hear what breed, other than Wolfhound, take their fancies. I’ll be along in me own good time.
Calisa: Erm… I love my Chihuahuas and cried when I had to find a new home for my beautiful Boxer… *eyes the cover of Mac’s book hungrily* Too bad hostesses can’t win. *pouts*
Mac: *waves at Calisa* Thanks, my friend. Don’t let him climb on the furniture. He sheds like crazy.
Calisa: That’s ok, Mac. I have plenty of duct tape around here I use for my own four-legged hair balls. *waves Mac off*
Calisa: What? I use the tape to remove hair from the furniture! Oh… Just let the visitors read the excerpt… *rolls eyes*
She tossed a thick stalk onto the small pile at her feet and set the claw at another. Her continued silence said she was done with him and expected him to go.
He abused her of that expectation by taking a seat at the small table beside the garden. He sat with his legs spread, elbows propped on his knees. Donovan lifted his head to stare at him, his dark brows puckered above darker eyes that seemed to plead with him to bring peace to the garden once more.
“I am your friend, Keely,” Colin told her, “and I’d like to help if I can.”
She paused at her chore, tilting her head to eye him suspiciously from beneath the brow of the hat. “Why would you want to do that?”
He rubbed a hand over his jaw. “Well, now, there’s a question. It turns out I’m not the sort of man who can ignore a mystery.”
“That’s not the impression you gave yesterday.”
“Yesterday I was near to being speechless.” A slow smile spread across his face as he decided how to break through her pique. “A man can be excused for being a bit rattled when sitting across from a lovely woman who’s just admitted to dreaming of him for the better part of a decade.”
She fell back on her heels, her eyes widening. “I didn’t admit to dreaming of you, Quinn.” She jabbed the claw in his direction. “I said you joined me in the dreams.”
“You’d consider that a distinction, and yet you admit you’ve been dreaming of me. I prefer my own interpretation.” Confusion knit her brow, and he could see she wasn’t sure if she wanted to blast him for being an arrogant ass, or smile. He pressed the advantage. “I’ve a clearer head this morning, darlin’. I’m here to offer my help.”
She didn’t react to his use of the endearment, but he didn’t miss the flash of interest in her eyes at his offer of help. “How, exactly, do you propose to do that?”
“These dreams we share.” He paused, pleased to see a faint blush spreading color on her cheeks. “They always take place at the Door?”
“The way I see it, you’ve made Dunhaven your home, but you’ve spent little time here. I, on the other hand, have lived the whole of my life in Dunhaven, except for the time I spent at university, and you’ll not be holding that against me.”
“I won’t, huh?”
He grinned. “No, darlin’, you won’t.”
“Hmm.” She glanced away, fiddling with the tool clutched in her lap. He winked at Donovan, and gained a dog grin. Now they were getting somewhere.
Find Mac at: http://mackenziecrowne.com (The details of the Scavenger Hunt are there, as well as all the clues)
Face Book: https://www.facebook.com/MackenzieCrowne
The Wild Rose Press http://tinyurl.com/84agxz2
What a great excerpt, Mac!!! And I really think I might print and frame that cover just so I can drool over it. Remember, black wolf shifter fan here. :) Thank you so very much for the contest, Mac!
Donovan…it was wonderful, and interesting to meet you. Thanks for surprising me with your visit. What more can I say but, stay away from my lilacs—don’t lift that leg there! Go get your groom on. :)
For everyone else, don’t forget to visit Mac’s cyber home- which is one you don’t want to miss, it’s gorgeous! Leave a note in the ranch comment box telling Donovan your email and what your favorite dog breed is (except Wolfhounds- no buttering allowed on the ranch unless it’s by me!) for the chance at a FREE copy of Gift of the Realm!!!