Wednesday, November 28, 2012

#GuestPost : Mackenzie Crowne #excerpt #giveaway


Breast cancer survivor & romance author

You’re a sweetie for sharing your home on the web with me, Terri. Thanks so much. Hello everyone. I’m stoked to be here to celebrate the release of my latest contemporary romance and…I brought along a friend. The Billionaire’s Con is her story, you see. Her name is Meggy Calhoun and she’s the smart-mouthed head chef of Palmer House, a hot new fine dining establishment just north of Boston. She pestered me for more than a year to tell her tale, just as she pestered me to let her come along today to meet Terri’s visitors and share a bit about her story. So, without further ado, it’s all yours, Meggy.

Thanks Terri and Mac. Wow! This is so exciting! Hi guys. Please don’t blame Mac for caving. It’s not her fault. After all, they don’t call me the Palmerton Pit Bull because I’m a pushover, which has come in handy since the day Trevor Bryce Christos showed up on my doorstep.

Lord, the man is glorious. A Greek god with the attitude to match. I was a goner with one look. Okay, he’s not really a god, but he sure has the arrogance of one, like the way he came to Palmerton, pretending he was a writer doing research for a book. Like me, the warm hearted people of Palmerton welcomed Trevor with open arms, fooled by his dimpled smiles and charm. Hah! In truth, he came to town to prove I was a con artist, bent on conning an old lady out of her fortune. A con artist of all things!

Oh, the sneaky Greek was wrong, of course. I’m no con artist. I’m a chef! Which is all I’ve ever wanted to be, with a dream of running my own kitchen. And I was finally about to achieve that dream with the opening of Palmer House. Unfortunately, my troubles began with an unexpected letter from my birth mother. Did I mention I’m adopted? I never should have read that letter. I soon discovered the lengths to which one of the wealthiest families on the eastern seaboard would go to protect their empire.

Hmmm. I’d love to share more, but Mac warned me about giving away too much of my story and is giving me the eye. So, I’ll just say this. Sneaky Greeks aren’t the only ones who know how to play the game to get what they want. ;-)

And to thank you all for visiting with us today, Mac is giving away a PDF copy of The Billionaire’s Con to one lucky commenter. I brought along an excerpt, and the recipe for my Scrumptious Brownie Cheesecake. It’s the most requested dessert at Palmer House, courtesy of Mac’s favorite pastry chef and real life brother. Enjoy!

Scrumptious Brownie Cheesecake:

Follow instructions for Betty Crocker Brownies.
Mix ingredients and add to a parchment lined spring mold pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 min.
While that's baking, mix 1 pound of softened Philly cream cheese, half cup of sugar, teaspoon vanilla, 2 eggs, until smooth.
Remove brownies from oven, pour cream cheese batter over them and swirl in with a butter knife.
Bake for additional 30 to 40 min at same temp or until set.


“What are you doing in here, Meggy?” Jill moved to stand beside the stepladder. “And why are you painting?”
Meggy frowned at the intruders, ignoring Jill for the moment. Her gaze scanned the tall stranger. She noted his expensive suit and handsome face below a thick pelt of dark, auburn hair. Though very attractive, he had that stiff, life-is-serious-business look about him.
She sighed at the waste and turned her frown to Jill.
“I needed something to keep my hands occupied until I can get back into the kitchen.”
Agitated as much with the delay as the mess, she flicked her hand holding the roller. A silken thread of paint danced through the air, leaving a drizzle of pale yellow across the faded denim of her favorite jeans.
Perfect. Just perfect.
“Get back into the kitchen?” Jill placed her hands on her hips. “I thought the kitchen was up and running.”
Meggy hoisted her butt off the top of the ladder and slapped a hand to the wall when she lost her balance. From the corner of her eye, she saw the lawyer take a startled step forward. With a disgusted growl, she glared at the fresh slash of paint coating her hand, and clambered down the ladder backwards before he could reach her.
“We had a leak.” She jumped the last two steps to land on the floor, jamming the roller into the pan at the foot of the ladder. “The plumber is there now, dealing with the aftermath.” Reminded of the calamity in her kitchen, she turned a glower on the silent man and quirked a brow. “And you are?”
“Oh, I’m sorry.” Jill rolled her eyes at Meggy and made the introductions. “Meggy Calhoun, this is Trevor Bryce. He’s a writer who’s interested in renting the Carriage House. Mr. Bryce, Meggy is one of the owners of Palmer House. She’s also the head chef.”
Meggy watched, fascinated, as the stiff lawyer vanished behind a wicked smile, a flash of white teeth, and dimples. There was nothing stiff about the penetrating gaze that met and held hers. The deep drawl of his voice, when he said hello, reminded her of the smooth slide of the aged whiskey found in Palmer House’s well-stocked bar.
She glanced at the hand he held out, and flipped up her own paint-smeared palm. “Sorry, I’m a mess.”
Laugh lines crinkled the tanned skin at the corner of his eyes, and the soft core of femininity within her sighed in appreciation. She’d always had a soft spot for the Greek god type. Looking at Trevor Bryce, she had a sudden craving for Feta cheese and Ouzo.

I love making new friends, so please feel free to visit my home on the web and learn more about me and my other titles @



  1. Mmmmmm loving the cheesecake recipe. Sounds easy too. Thanks! And good luck with the book!

  2. Thanks Jennifer. That cheesecake really is scrumptious, and easy too. Thanks for stopping by.

  3. Hi Mac, 'The Billionaire's Con' sounds like a wonderful story and that cheesecake recipe looks delicious. Not sure if we can get Betty Crocker Brownies mix over here, but I might just try doing the brownies from scratch. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Good Morning Mac! I love the excerpt and thanks for the recipe. Was thinking about doing a little something for the office and this looks terrific.

    1. You'll love it, Patsy. This recipe tends to start little wars around our place when the last piece is up for grabs.

  5. I was gone when this book released so now I'm back to the internet and off to punch in the credit card code to update my amazon account so I can get a bite of this interesting book- looks delish! Thank Dan for the recipe too, maybe that will be my potluck dish for Saturday's party. Will go dust my face with flour to get the busy look on! lol 8x8 or 9x13 size brownies??? Thanks Mac, Looks like another great read.

    1. LOL R. Welcome back. But wait, Saturday's party? I need to call mother-mother for the social schedule.

  6. From scratch, Lyn? I'm impressed, since I have to dust my oven before I can pop in a frozen pizza. ;-)

  7. Hi Mac! **waves madly** Loved the excerpt and the recipe. You know I'm a fan of your writing, but don't enter me for the drawing. I have my own copy in my "Keeper" file on my Kindle. LOVED IT!!! And owe you a review.

    1. Hi Vonnie! *waves back madly* I love being in your "Keeper" file. ;-) Enjoy the recipe. It's a keeper too!

  8. Hi Terri and Mac! I love everything cheesecake. This is a great excerpt, Mac. :) I hope to win this time.

    1. Hiya Calisa. I'm a cheesecake junkie! ;-) Good luck in the draw.

  9. Yummy! A great book and a great recipe too! Good luck Mac, you're amazing!

  10. Hi, Mac--I love cheesecake of any kind--except pumpkin. Why would anyone mess us good cheesecake with pumpkin. Anyway, your recipe is perfect, and since I'm so well acquainted with Betty Crocker Brownie Mix, this will be a breeze. Thanks so much for sharing it--it goes into my holiday stack of recipe cards.
    The book you wrote also sounds wonderful, sweet and rich and surprising, like the cheesecake. Congratulations on its release and sell many!!!

  11. I will be trying the recipe tomorrow. I want to take the goodies with me to my book signing tomorrow night. ;~}}}

    Mac, you are a marvelous author and I always look forward to anything you write.

  12. Love the excerpt and the cheesecake recipe. That's going to be a hands down winner with my kids and hubby! I've already won a book prize this week, so don't put me into the draw as I will be downloading 'The Billionaires Con' for my holiday. Only 13 days to go. Good luck, Mac!

  13. Good morning all.

    Terri, You're a sweetheart for sharing your home on the web with me and Meggy. Thanks so much.

    And thanks to all of you who stopped by. I know you'll enjoy the cheesecake. It's so ... decadent! yumm!

    And the winner of the e-copy of The Billionaire's Con goes to...

    Celia! Congrats girl. Meggy and Trevor's story is on its way to your inbox. Enjoy!