Regan's Books

Regan's Books
Reads From Regan Taylor

Friday, March 18, 2011

The Three Muskateers -- If It Were Written Today

I've been enjoying, once again, reading Alexandre Dumas' Three Muskateers.  For the weekend I also ordered the earlier Hollywood film with Don Ameche. I love the old classic movies almost as much as the classic novels.

I started it about two weeks ago and it's about 800 pages in a hardback -- a hefty volume. Each page is filled with the rich prose only Dumas could write. I adore his books, especially the Count of Monte Cristo. This morning while I was reading over coffee it felt like I'd been with Athos, Porthos, Aramis and, of course, D'Artagnan for quite some time and that led me to thinking about how would the Three Muskateers be written today.

While it is mostly D'Artagnan's story, readers are also treated to pretty full stories of his companions. They have their loves, their losses, their personal battles and their crusades. They also have their close friendship. I thought back on one of the more "recent" portrayals, which isn't that recent at all Richard Lester's 1973 version with Michael York, Oliver Reed, Faye Dunaway, Richard Chamberlain and a host of other marvelous actors and actresses. When he originally made the film it ran over four hours and was broken into two -- the Three Muskateers and then the Four Muskateers. I'm still a little in love with Michael York although in retrospect, Oliver Reed is quite appealing as a hero. Even with the longer length of the movie, the screen version does not even begin to compete with the book.

I have to wonder if the book were written today, given our rushed world, our 142 character lives on twitter and slightly more on facebook, in a world of novellas that are quick reads on our e-readers, how would The Three Muskateers fare at being published as an original today. A part of me suspects that the author would either write it as a four book series from the git go or that an editor would ask him or her to divide it into four books, one for each of the heroes. It wouldn't be the same story, far from it -- yet I think many of our modern series books draw from Dumas' idea of four devoted friends who are larger than life who ride in to save the day. Maybe not on horses, but in helicopters, fast cars and motorcycles.

I like the way Dumas wrote his story -- I like that the four threads are woven into one action packed and often emotional tale and not broken into four books of a series. I'm not sure it would fly in today's reading world.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

I Love Book Cover Day! Introducing The Photograph

Just as the eyes are the windows to the soul, book covers are the gateway to being transported to another time and place. The portal to leaving our day to day life, no matter how exciting some may be, to "be" somewhere else for a short time.  One of the best experiences in publishing is working with a cover artist who "gets" your book. The best cover artists are the ones who, with a few words from you, can weave amazing magic to give you the perfect cover.

This morning I received my cover for The Photograph, book one of my Treasures Antiques series, arrived.  Niki is an amazing artist. The not only captured my vision of the antique shop where some of the story takes place, but she brought the very street I envisioned to her palatte. I'd love to walk down this street and stop into that very antique store.

Best of all is the couple gracing the cover. As a friend of mine at work said, "I could let him whisper in my ear all day." Niki created a cover that captured my vision of The Photograph and that slightly off base feeling that I imagine you would have if you suddenly found yourself in another time.  She didn't fall into the cliche trap of slapping a bunch of old photographs on the page and thinking it was a unique idea -- which I've seen happen with a book that has the mention of a picture or photograph or painting in the title. She gave me a totally unique cover that, I think, evokes a number of romantic emotions.

Without further ado -- my cover for The Photograph

Monday, March 7, 2011

Meet Regina Andrews! And Check Out her Latest Book Light of the Heart

Light of the Heart


Regina Andrews

More than anything, Cascade Preston wants to forget her dark childhood in Sterling Lakes, so there’s no way she’ll agree to help refurbish that town’s church. Then she meets Dan McQuay. Will she be able to forgive the past and let the light of God’s love shine through into her heart?

Back Cover Blurb

A stained-glass artist based in Boston, Cascade Preston’s world is a kaleidoscope of color and beauty. She has overcome a dark childhood, deeply shadowed by domestic violence, in the town of Sterling Lakes. When she is approached to design new windows for a refurbished church in Sterling Lakes, she ignores the request. But when the no-nonsense Project Manager Dan McQuay appears looking for the window plans, the project takes on a whole new light. Will Cascade be able to keep the dark, protective cocoon she has built around herself intact, or will McQuay break through and shine new light into her heart? Is it possible that God’s plan for Cascade will lead her to forgive the town that ignored the situation in her family?

Excerpt from “Light of the Heart” by Regina Andrews

Chapter One

The afternoon class at Tanglewood Women's Prison was a spectrum of tension, as separated and splintered as a beam of light refracted through a prism. Cascade Preston held her student's template assignment up to the light overhead, and spoke carefully on the quality of the stained glass project.

"With two lights, or openings, Brenda, I would say your idea of a church window for this one would be correct."

Sighing, the student replied, "So you think I'm making progress?"

"Of course." She tossed her honey-colored curls behind her shoulders. "Don't you?"

Brenda snorted. "Heck, no. I'm in here for domestic assault. What do I know about progress? My life is over."

This stopped Cascade in her tracks. "Look, we all make mistakes. God has told us that sinners should flock to him. What do you think? "

Brenda shrugged. "God has his own agenda. We'll see what the parole board says about mine in two weeks."

"For now, let's focus on next week's class. Bring me a flower for that one.”

"Where are we supposed to get a flower?" someone muttered.

"Draw one, stupid," Brenda answered.

"Bye, ladies. Take care."

"See you." Sad-eyed, Brenda gave her a high-five as Cascade walked past her.

Cascade's heels clicked efficiently with her every crisp step, and she made sure to shuttle as closely as possible alongside the beefy guard who escorted her from the holding room. Getting into her Corolla, she whispered a prayer. "I don't think I'm doing any good here, Lord, but I feel you telling me to stick with it. So I will. Maybe this is the kind of thing that saved my mother." She tried to block the images of her mother's bruises from her mind, but they wouldn't go away. They never did.

The drive back into Boston passed by quickly, without too much traffic. "Lean on Me" blasted from her audio system, and she sang along with all her heart. At twenty-seven, she knew it was technically an oldie, but to her, it was fresh and filled with meaning. Cascade wondered as she sang what it would feel like to have someone to lean on, because she had always been alone.

"There's only one thing that could make tonight perfect," she mused as she pulled into the parking area for her condo complex, "and that's not going to happen, for sure."

Images of her long-gone fiancé, Kevin, came into her mind and heart. Where was he this fine June evening? More importantly, why were things so much better for him without her in his life?

A form crossing her path brought her back to reality. Her eyes narrowed as she noticed someone walking towards her car. A guy -- a big guy she did not recognize.

She shaded her eyes from the late day sun. Dark hair and outdoorsy looks. Work boots. "Nope,” she murmured to herself, “I don't know him."

Hopping from her car, she said, "Can I help you?"

"If you're Cascade Preston, you sure can."

He folded his arms across his chest. With all those muscles moving, Cascade could only imagine the stress put on the seams of his light blue cotton shirt.

"And you are..."

"Dan McQuay." He extended his arm towards her. "From the site."

"Hi." Cascade pumped his strong hand, lost in his sky blue eyes. "What site?"

He tilted his head. "The construction site."

"I'm not following you."

He looked at her steadily. "I'm project manager for the retrofit on the church in Sterling Lakes. The one that you're doing the windows for."

Cascade’s heartbeat quickened. Just hearing the name of the town where she grew up made her anxious and tense. "It seems there's been a misunderstanding. No way am I working on anything in Sterling Lakes." She started to bustle past him. "Now if you'll excuse me?"

"Don't run away, Ms. Preston. There's a problem here."

His tone of voice got her attention. He sounded like he cared... about her. That was crazy. She was a total stranger to him.

She nodded. "Apparently there is a problem, you're right. I don't know what you're talking about. Like I said, I'm not doing any work in Sterling Lakes, and I never will. That's the last place in the world I ever would go."

He gave a slow whistle. "Well, that's a loaded speech if I ever heard one."

In spite of herself, she smiled. "I didn't mean to get all hot and huffy, but it is how I feel, and I have my good reasons."

He eyed her intently before he finally spoke. "Understood. The thing is, your name is on the plans that I have, and my crew is ready to get going. We haven't heard from you, and we need to have a job meeting. Mostly, we need your specs."

Cascade noticed the strong line of his jaw when he spoke, and oh, those bluer than blue eyes of his were so easy to get lost in. She swallowed.

"I don't know what to tell you. I'm not contracted for that job. Your project executive should be able to answer your questions." She toyed with the zipper on her oversized leather shoulder bag as she watched thunderclouds roll across his handsome face. "Look, why don't you give me his name? I'll check things out at my studio in the morning and get in touch with him. Maybe I can get to the bottom of this."

"Yup." He took his hands out of his pockets. "Here's my business card, and here's his. Try and remember, every day is money to me."

"Okay, I know. I'm in business, too, so I get it. I know every job I'm on, and this one is not on my list. Let me see if I can find out why I'm on the list of subcontractors... if I really am."

"You are."

"I shouldn't be, so there's a mistake. I never even sent in a bid."

"At least we found out something tonight," he said with a shrug. "Other than you being a whole lot prettier in person than in the pictures all those magazine articles and newspaper stories print about you."

Cascade’s face warmed up at his compliment. "Now you're trying to butter me up."

"Just stating the truth, plain and simple like I always do, Ms. Preston. That's my way. Thank you for your time."

"You're welcome."

He started walking over to his truck. "Talk to you tomorrow."

"Right. And there's one more thing."

He questioned her with a wondering look.

"Please call me Cascade." Her smile lingered as she watched him drive off into the Boston twilight. Too bad this job was in Sterling Lakes. It might not be that bad to do a job with Dan McQuay. Not bad at all.

Light of the Heart will be available for purchase Tuesday, March 1st, at Desert Breeze Publishing.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Our St. Patrick's Day Hide and Seek Contest!

Welcome to our St Patrick’s
Day Hide & Seek!!

In an attempt to fill his love’s new e-reader, Paddy the leprechaun has been visiting lots of author’s websites. Unbeknownst to him there was a hole in his pocket and he has lost his gold. He needs your help to refill his pot and ensure a Happy St Patrick’s Day for everyone going to the party at the Rainbow’s end. What you need to do is visit the author’s sites and find where the gold fell out of Paddy’s pocket.

(check for the image on the contest page of my website:


Keep a list of who and where you found it and in one (1) email send your answers to corinnedavies @ (no spaces)

Be certain to type: St Patrick’s Contest in the subject box.

The contest is open from 12:01am, March 7st to 11:59pm on March 17th . Entries with all the correct answers will be entered into a drawing.

One (1) prize will be awarded per winner.

The names of the winners will be listed on the site of all participating authors. Each winner will be contacted by the individual author of the given prize.

Participating authors & prizes:

Mechele Armstrong ~ A green candle set

Drea Becraft ~ A surprise of Irish goodies

Savannah Chase ~ An electronic copy of her novel, Pleasure After The Pain

Kris Cook ~ An electronic copy of Perfection

Corinne Davies ~ A one of a kind pendant made by Shameless Fashions

Stacey Espino ~ A $10 gift certificate to either Siren or Evernight Publishing

Erin M. Leaf ~ An electronic copy and autographed print copy of Appassionato

Chloe Lang ~ a $10 Strandbucks gift certificate

Aubrey Leatherwood ~ An electronic copy of her novel, Model Lover

Missy Martine ~ An electronic version of any book on her site, along with a printed t-shirt,
hat, cloth tote bag and some swag (pens, magnets, etc)

Sophie Oak ~ An autographed copy of Two to Love and Three to Ride & $25.00 Strandbucks gift certificate

Heather Rainier ~ $20.00 gift card for Hips and Curves

Zenobia Renquist ~ 2 copies of Harley on the Rocks (**2 winners**)

Jenika Snow ~ Readers choice, an electronic copy of any of her books

Regan Taylor ~ A shamrock necklace

Kiera West ~ A $10 Strandbucks gift certificate

May the Luck of the

Irish be with you!!!