Apr 23 2014

My latest Heroine

On my recent cruise to the Western Caribbean, I met a true heroine, a woman of strength named Bobbi Jo Bottomley. Bobbi Jo is a dog behavior expert who runs a business called Tri-State K9 University, based out of Indiana. Not only does Bobbi Jo take in abused, mistreated, and homeless animals—including an orphaned tarantula—but she also trains K-9s to become therapy dogs and service dogs for disabled veterans. Service dogs help veterans with things like mobility and post-traumatic stress disorder. By teaching dogs to turn lights off and on, to open drawers, pick up fallen objects, even detect emotional and physical states through their senses and respond appropriately, Bobbi Jo gives dogs the skills to make disabled veterans more independent. When I think about what a difference dogs can make in the lives of our fighting men and women, I am so grateful for people like Bobbi Jo, who facilitate the bond between man and beast and make the world a better place for all of God’s creatures. BobbiJoTo contact Bobbi Jo, check out her website at www.TSK9U.com.

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Mar 21 2014

The Enforcer nominated for RONE Awards

Some heroes are just unforgettable, and that’s what I attribute THE ENFORCER’s nomination to the RONE Awards to: Tobias Burke’s wonderful sense of humor. You remember Tobias for the snarky comments on his T-shirts. This story of an ATF agent going undercover into a West Virginia militia to investigate it leader now needs your vote! During the workweek of April 7-13, please drop by this page to vote for THE ENFORCER: http://indtale.com/2014-rone-awards-week-five . You will need to create a user name but please don’t let that stop you! InD’Tale sends out a fabulous E-zine detailing and reviewing newly released Indie-authored books. They gave THE ENFORCER a fabulous review last fall. You might actually opt in to receiving their E-zine subscription.

I’d love to win this award, but I can’t do it without your vote. Thank you for helping me to get some recognition. My readers are my heroes; there’s no question of that!

Medallion for Rone Noimine

Medallion for Rone Noimine



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Mar 07 2014

Miss Eastern States Educates about PTSD

Today The Health Journal featured former Mrs. Virginia, Amber Wandtke, a Navy Petty Officer who uses her position as a pageant winner to raise awareness of PTSD and to fight for better treatment. Amber was first introduced to the horrors of PTSD when her husband, also active duty, returned from Iraq with symptoms of the war-related disease. He benefited hugely from counseling but PTSD took a toll on their marriage, leading Amber to become an advocate for diagnosis and treatment. Read more about Amber’s efforts at The Health Journal.

PTSD is a subject that I touch upon in many of my novels, from my very first Navy SEAL story, FORGET ME NOT, to my latest novel, THE ENFORCER, in which my heroine, a militia leader in West Virginia suffers debilitating PTSD due to her work in mortuary affairs. Personnel in mortuary affairs are responsible for collecting the fallen from the battle field, putting them back together as much as possible, and even accompanying them stateside. They have the highest rate of PTSD in the military. In my opinion, these brave souls ought to get more public credit. Gratitude and acknowledgment would probably go a long way toward helping them heal from such trauma. For a sneak peek at THE ENFORCER, click HERE.

Thank you, Amber Wandtke,

Amber Wandtke

Former Mrs. Virginia uses PTSD as her focus platform.

for doing your part in supporting our heroes!

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Feb 25 2014

Our Heroes Need Help

You may have heard in the news about a couple of Navy SEALs who died as a result of using tainted heroin. Please don’t think less of our heroes for being human. SOFREP.com recently posted an article about a drug problem in the Special Forces community, especially with warriors who have served back-to-back combat tours and have separated from the Teams. Before you judge them, walk a mile in their shoes, the article pleads. Many a good man has turned to drugs due to the stress of divorce, child custody, and PTSD. The article pleads for something to be done to help our elite warriors learn to cope with normal, civilian life.

A quote from the article:

“And what happens to brave men once they separate from active duty? Once you cross the threshold from active duty to civilian life, and leave your Team Room behind, life is a lot different on the outside. Nobody cares how many combat deployments or kills you have, and this sure as hell doesn’t translate well in the world of corporate Human Resources (HR). A friend in advertising once told me that their un-written corporate practice was to place all military veteran resumes at the bottom of the pile. This has to change, and it starts with you.

The men from the Special Ops community leave behind a world, experiences, and a culture that no Department of Veterans Affairs representative or childhood best friend can come close to understanding. And the problem is getting worse, not better. It’s been taking a quiet toll on the Special Operations veteran community for a long time.

The culture of “suck it up” with no complaining sometimes makes a bad situation worse. This quiet is now turning into a loud roar, and making national headlines in the media. America shouldn’t ignore or judge these men that served their country in the most terrible of conditions. Instead, it’s time to help, and now is the time that it’s desperately needed the most.”
Read more at: http://sofrep.com/33256/substance-abuse-special-operations-navy-seals-maersk-alabama-maritime-security/#ixzz2u3Zo5RXW

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Feb 20 2014

Vinny and Ophelia, Characters Who Won’t Let Go

code-of-silence-web-copyFor everyone who loved my SEAL Team 12 series, I have one final gift for you, a novella featuring Vinny and Ophelia, secondary characters from NEXT TO DIE. You remember them as the squared away twenty-year-old Navy SEAL and the wild and willful twenty-six-year-old Hooters waitress. Their passionate and entertaining story started when Ophelia plowed her clunker into the back of Vinny’s Honda–remember that? He wrangled a date by way of restitution. Vinny turned out to be unlike any guy that “awful Ophelia” had ever dated. While she considered him way too young for a serious relationship, Vinny still managed to win her heart and to inspire Ophelia to better herself. Now, five years later, she’s a renowned journalist, and she and Vinny have finally tied the knot. But why is Ophelia keeping secrets from her husband that could destroy the special bond they share? Order your E-book or paperback copy today and find out.

Available at Amazon, B&N, Kobo, and www.smashwords.com.

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Feb 09 2014

Better than a box of Chocolates?

Navy SEAL Anthology

Boxed Set of All-Navy SEAL stories for Valentines

What could be better than a box of chocolates on Valentine’s Day? Why, a boxed set of all-Navy-SEAL stories, including my newest release, CODE OF SILENCE, a novella featuring my beloved secondary couple from NEXT TO DIE, Vinny and Ophelia.

SEALED WITH A KISS is an E-book anthology written by a pool of USA Today, NY Times, and nationally bestselling authors. Selling for only .99 cents, it goes on sale the week of Valentine’s Day.

Meet the authors/Read the Story lines and fall in love!

Marliss Melton—Code of Silence:

Navy SEAL Vinny DeInnocentis has no idea his news reporter wife is keeping secrets. With her hard-won reputation for rooting out corruption, Ophelia can’t let a little thing like her unexpected pregnancy get in the way of exposing Pennsylvania’s lieutenant governor for the liar he is. But will her quest to publicize the truth — and her shocking discovery that her target is far more dangerous than she imagined — cost her more than she ever thought she’d lose?

Gennita Low—Warrior:

On a covert operation with his SEAL team, Lucas Branson bumps into his love interest, Kit Ling Harrison, who is overseas with her media team interviewing victims of war. Things get interesting when he and Kit end up on an unexpected road trip. Chasing vehicles, avoiding RPGs, singing silly songs, and falling in love ensue.

Sharon Hamilton—SEAL My Destiny

Back from a horrible tour, Navy SEAL Luke Paulsen has a chance encounter with a woman who begins to unthaw his troubled soul. Deciding he’s too damaged, he begs off further entanglement, but then meets her again a month later at a family wedding, where the unavoidable attraction pulls them together as never before. Will their love be enough to heal them both for a chance at a Happily Ever After?


Back from deployment, Navy SEAL Remy LaDue’s planned Valentine’s Day date with NCIS agent Mitchell Sanders runs amuck when he finds her undercover as a sexy stripper at a local lounge. Remy and his team join forces with Mitchell to find a missing woman and discover a human trafficking organization in the darkest heart of Virginia Beach

JM Madden—SEAL’s Lost Dream:

Former Navy SEAL K9 handler Joe Flynn lost his dog in the war and doesn’t want anything to do with animals, but every stray in Denver seems to head his way. Luckily for him, the luscious veterinarian Willow James doesn’t mind taking care of everything he finds. She even seems willing to take him on with all his ghosts, but is he ready to let them go for her?

Teresa Reasor—Breaking Free

When her brother Brett is attacked and left for dead, Zoe Weaver and Lieutenant Adam ‘Hawk’ Yazzie work together to discover if one of his SEAL teammates is responsible for his injuries. But will loyalties forged on the battlefield prove more binding than the truth? Or their love?

Stephanie Tyler—Holding On

Jamie Michaels is an FBI Agent, married to a Navy SEAL…and about to give birth while her husband’s deployed.Navy SEAL Chris Waldron’s been on some impossible missions before, but getting home in time for the birth of his son might prove to be the toughest–and most rewarding mission of all.

Delilah Devlin—Mutiny’s Bounty

Interested only in experiencing an adrenaline-packed adventure first-hand to give her credo when she books her clients’ adventure vacations, Lace McElhannon finds more excitement than she can handle when she meets and falls into bed with ex-SEAL Dex Haygood. Fresh from protecting transport ships from Somali pirates, Dex figures his latest job will be a cakewalk, until he finds himself in deep water, swimming with sharks and trying to protect Lace when the yacht they’re sailing on is taken.

Visit our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/KissingSEALs to talk about the anthology.

Buy your copy right now at Amazon, B&N, Kobo, and iTunes. Available in E-format only.

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Feb 02 2014

Wives and Widows of US Navy SEALs, the bravest of all

When Marcus Luttrell signed a copy of LONE SURVIVOR for me, he wrote something very profound which I would like to reiterate: “The only job harder than being a Navy SEAL is being the wife one. You are the hero.” (He assumed as many do that my Navy retired husband was a SEAL).  But he was still right. The only human beings more heroic than our SEALs are their wives, some of whom become their widows. This blog is dedicated to the widows of Navy SEALs. Here are the ones I’m acquainted with. Please feel free to list more names in the comments below. To these strong, incredible women: America thanks you for your terrible sacrifice, and we are sorry that the price was so high. We share in your profound loss. God bless you and comfort you.

Maria (Patsy) Dietz-Shipley, Laura McGreevy, Kimberly Vaughn, Taya Kyle, Kelley Brown, Normandina Healy… Please keep the list going by adding names to the Comment tab below.

Widow of Mike McGreevy, Navy SEAL

Marliss meets Navy SEAL widow


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Jan 25 2014

Navy SEALs kick ass in “Captain Phillips”

My readers know by now that I have to see any movie featuring “my boys,” as I call them. I finally got to rent CAPTAIN PHILLIPS, the movie based on the real life rescue of a cargo ship captain who found himself abducted by Somalian Pirates. Talk about a gripping film! Tom Hanks gave a stellar performance, especiallytoward the end, when he portrayed the captain’s shock and relief at having been rescued. The captain’s real-life rescue involved three shots fired simultaneously over open water, killing Phillip’s three remaining captors and setting him free. While Hank’s performance is certainly deserving of an Oscar nomination, my eyes were glued to the SEALs who swept in, did the work necessary to free him, and left without ever falling in the spotlight. My favorite SEAL was the “negotiator” played by actor Max Martini. I kept wanting to pause the movie just to stare at him. Yeah, yeah, I know he’s not a real SEAL, but he’s just my type. If you’re looking for a gripping movie and one more reason to respect those Navy SEALs, then CAPTAIN PHILLIPS is a movie you don’t want to

Max Martini in "Captain Phillips"

Actor plays Navy SEAL negotiator


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Jan 20 2014

LONE SURVIVOR, the book, inspired my fiction

After seeing the movie, LONE SURVIVOR, I was reminded of just how much former Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell’s experience inspired my own writing. Before he even published LONE SURVIVOR back in 2007, I had read snippets in the newspapers about a sole surviving Navy SEAL of an operation-gone-wrong, and that news alone was enough to inspire my fourth SEAL book, NEXT TO DIE, which was dedicated to Marcus and all those who perished.

The Protector Audio editionA reader reminded me recently that Marcus Luttrell’s experience also inspired the evolution of THE PROTECTOR, book one of my Taskforce Series, in which my hero suffers a similar traumatic experience as Marcus’s and blames himself for the deaths of his teammates. Who knows how the US Navy SEALs will continue to inspire my future novels?

You can find THE PROTECTOR in paperback and ebook formats at your favorite online book retailer. Free audio book copies are available in exchange for an honest review. Just contact me through my website to request your copy.

Listen to a snippet by clicking the play button below:


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Jan 12 2014

Heroes Honored in Lone Survivor, the Movie

Marliss Melton and Marcus Luttrell

Marcus Luttrell signs copies of Service

Seeing what Marcus Luttrell, the only survivor, endured took my breath away. I had read the book, LONE SURVIVOR, so I was curious to see how the film differed from the book.

Even though it was directed under Marcus Luttrell’s watchful eye, there were a few small differences. The most obvious one was that Marcus did not play himself. While he did play one of the SEALs at the forward operating base, his character was played by Marc Wahlberg, a man who’s six to eight inches shorter than Marcus but makes similar facial expressions. In his book, Marcus recuperated for several days in the village where Gulab, the shepherd, protected him. While he was occasionally roughed up by the Taliban during this time, he reports in his book that, being such small, slight men, they couldn’t do much damage to him. Not so in the movie where they beat him to a pulp and nearly cut his head off. In the movie it seems like he stays in the village for a very short while. And in the movie the American military lands right in the heart of town to rescue him right as the Taliban are invading. That’s certainly a  more dramatic resolution to the story than Marcus walking out of the town under his own steam to a rendezvous point that–granted–wasn’t the safest place to land a helicopter. I think the biggest difference is that, in his book, Marcus never reported actually dying and being resuscitated, which is what happened in the movie. He did say that a part of him died on that mountain, but in the book he meant that in the figurative sense, not literally.

Still, I watched the entire movie on the edge of my seat. I jumped, I flinched, and I cried. I was a little disappointed that Danny Deitz was made to look slightly less than the hero he seemed in the book. I had the honor of meeting his beautiful widow, Maria (Patsy) Deitz, at a fundraiser two years later. I’ve also met Marcus whose story inspired my book NEXT TO DIE, a book that now resides in his house, thanks to his wife Melanie who bought my series at a fundraiser she put together.

All in all, I recommend the movie LONE SURVIVOR to everyone, but it’s not a substitute for the book, which while reading, you’ll get to know much more about Marcus, his teammates, and his family who kept vigil the entire time that he was missing.

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