July 4th is just around the corner, that famous holiday where Americans celebrate the birth of our young nation. And on this weekend before my favorite summer holiday, I have romance author
Alana Lorens who’s in the midst of a dual blog tour.


CONVICTION OF THE HEART (release date June 8, 2012)

And SECOND CHANCES (release date June 19, 2012)

The first and Second books of the Pittsburgh Lady Lawyer Series!

Come by the following blogs or live booksignings and leave a comment to be entered in a drawing—at the end of the tour, Alana will give away one ebook copy of each book and one paperback copy of each book—Four lucky winners! Check out all the websites at http://alanalorens.com

And now, Alana’s going to share some thoughts on another American holiday.

So, take it away, Alana…

Holidays. The thought of a holiday dinner just conjures up pictures of steaming, aromatic dishes of food, happy music, the sounds of voices of all ages, and family. You know, all those family games and shared memories and chestnuts roasting on the open fire? Or maybe it’s more a gathering of nuts, period.

A whole group of family. Yes. What a perfect time to introduce your new “friend’ to a whole bunch of strangers at once! Who would put someone through such torture?

Nick Sansone, a Pittsburgh police lieutenant, is a friendly guy, but when the woman he’s after, attorney Suzanne Taylor, invites him to “meet the parents” at Thanksgiving dinner (at her persistent parent’s insistence), his heart has to stumble a little. But his own mother passed away several years before, and his retired cop father is just as happy with a turkey TV dinner. He’s about out of excuses.

Even worse, Suzanne’s father and two teenaged daughters are avid Steelers fans—and he roots for the Dolphins.

            Nobody’s perfect.

            What holidays have you spent trapped with a loved ones’ family—did it bring you closer or pull you apart?

Alana Lorens’ Conviction of the Heart  is available from:


Family law attorney Suzanne Taylor understands her clients’ problems—her own husband left her with two babies to raise alone. Now that they’re teenagers, her life is full. The last thing she wants is the romantic attentions of a police lieutenant, no matter how good-looking. 

Lt. Nick Sansone is juggling the demands of a new promotion, and doesn’t need complications either. But when he sends a councilman’s battered wife to Suzanne for help, he realizes he wants to connect with the lovely, prickly lawyer on more than a professional level. 

They are soon confronted with a different battle, when the abused woman’s husband threatens retribution. The powerful, well-connected councilman can damage both their careers—not to mention hurt those they love. Can they bend enough to admit they need each other in a time of crisis? Or will a husband’s revenge take them down before they ever get a chance?


      “He’s nice looking, your lieutenant,” Maureen said, a twinkle in her eye as she poured them both a cup of coffee and set out the cream. “So tall.”
            “Yes, he certainly is.” Suzanne read her mother’s face, seeing only approval. “Just what the fortune teller ordered.” Tall, dark and handsome, wasn’t that the usual lingo?
            “You went to a fortune teller?” Maureen gasped.
            “No, Mom. I didn’t go to a fortune teller.” Suzanne laughed. “I’m teasing you. I told you Nick was a nice guy. He’s very thoughtful. Believe me, he wants to look out for us in every sense of the words. It’s his job, you know.”
            “That’s good.  You know I worry about you, Suzie. I know you’re one of these new liberated women who can take care of yourself and handle everything.” Her dark eyes searched Suzanne’s face, emotion intensifying as she continued. “Last year, when I almost lost your father, I learned that we all need to love and be loved. Facing the prospect of being alone scares me to death. You’re human, too. Your children love you, but not in the way each adult person needs, love, support, understanding. No man is an island—and no woman, either.”
            Silence hung for a few seconds in the kitchen, then Suzanne’s phone buzzed in her pocket. She took it out to look at it. A text message from her client Maddie. “Excuse me a minute, Mom.”
            She selected the message. He’s taken Katie!
            Irritation prickling through her skin, Suzanne apologized with her eyes and stepped into the pantry for some privacy, dialing Maddie’s number. When she answered, Suzanne said, “When did he take her?”
            “She must have slipped out this morning. I thought she was studying in her room, but she’s gone.”         Maddie’s voice cracked with the effort of holding back tears.
            “Did you call the police?”
            “Not yet. I called you first. I don’t believe he’s doing this! He knows the children are the only thing I care about.” The sobs tore loose, and Suzanne heard a loud clunk, as if the phone had been dropped, then anxious voices.
            “Maddie?” A growl of frustration escaped her. If Greg had broken into the house, someone should call the police. Do something.  “Maddie?”
            A moment later a scrabbling noise on the other end of the phone and then a relieved Maddie. “She’s here. She’s back. Joshua took her for a walk, but she told him she wasn’t going to Greg’s.” The hint of a smile in her voice. “I’m so sorry for disturbing your holiday. I promise I won’t call again.”
            “Don’t be silly. If you call, I’ll be there for you, Maddie.  That’s what I’m here for.”
            Maddie said goodbye and Suzanne held the blank phone in her hand a moment, glad the pantry door was closed. Maybe she could stall off her mother’s persistent nagging a little longer. Or at least formulate a coherent response.
            She only wants to see you happy. By her definition, that is. A happily married woman, at home, caring for her man.
            Suzanne shuddered. No, thank you. She enjoyed her independence and intended to keep it.
            The door opened suddenly, startling her. She nearly dropped the phone as she took a step back, ramming her shoulder into a thick shelf of canned goods. “Ouch!”
            Nick studied her curiously. His broad shoulders blocked the kitchen from her view. “What are you doing in here? Did your mom put you in time-out or something?”