Spotlight & Author Interview for The Lightbearers

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The Lightbearers by Nora M. Garcia

Book Description

THE LIGHTBEARERS is the story of an ancient Egyptian King and Queen, Akhenaton and Nefertiti, who have been reincarnating together for the past 3300 years. They have been entrusted with the mission of The Lightbearers, whose responsibility is to be guardians of the human race and to enlighten any whose path they cross. Through reincarnation, during each of their lifetimes, they strive to overcome violence, greed and injustice and in each lifetime they leave pockets of individuals with whom they have shared their secrets of life and death. They have also been ascribed with the powers of telepathy, astral projection and psycho kinesis. They are highly evolved and highly enlightened.Discovery of their innate mystical powers is facilitated by the assistance of an alien being who introduces them to the mission of the Lightbearer. Through a series of flashbacks two of their previous lifetimes are revealed beginning in Ancient Egypt and including 17th century France where they switched genders.The story unfolds in the 21st century where Jean Crystal, Nefertiti’s incarnate, has been kidnapped by Dr. Natas, whose plan for world domination has been temporarily disrupted by Jean and her husband George, Akhenaten’s incarnate. Jean and George have discovered a secret about Dr. Natas experimental school, a school completely computerized and robotized.

Jean is held captive on a laboratory table by a motion sensitive laser directed toward her central nervous system. Not realizing this, upon awakening from a narcotic sleep induced by the doctor, she attempts to move and is suddenly wracked by a mind numbing pain. The more she moves the more pain she receives. By astrally projecting herself she is able to overcome the pain and investigate her circumstances. George has already been assassinated and while awaiting her own demise, George pays Jean a visit in the lab, assuring her of their eternal vow to each other. Jean is very shortly, thereafter, assassinated. Upon the joyful reunion of their spirits on Petite Terre, a tiny island just off the Normandy Province of France, Jean and George plan their return. While it is possible to determine their gender and the time in which they return, they cannot predetermine their identities. They must pick a place, a time and a signal by which they can find and identify each other in their subsequent lifetime. In this particular lifetime, their favorite song was “Imagine” by John Lennon and so on the first Monday of October, 2024 at 12 noon, they decide to meet outside the computer science building on the UCLA campus in Los Angeles. She will find him sitting under a tree near the building with a guitar strumming “Imagine”.

Their reunion takes place 20 years later, albeit not without a hitch. Together they set out to rescue the United States from Dr. Natas’s well-placed plans, he has already begun to execute.

 

An Interview with Nora 

Where did the inspiration behind The Lightbearers come from?

I would have to say it’s a combination of my belief in reincarnation, my faith in the spiritual world and my fascination with ancient Egypt.  They all came together one evening and it was as though someone was piping something into my ear.  Oddly enough, the end came first, it was just a seed of an idea, two weeks later, the middle and the beginning came, again as seeds of an idea and it took off from there.

I had a very other wordly experience in the NY Public Library when I began my research.  I was walking through the Egyptian section and there was no one else around when suddenly a book fell off the shelf and landed at my feet.  It was the story of Akhenaten, about whom I eventually created a fantasy.  He was light years ahead of his time as was Nefertiti, his wife, and they became my inspiration.

 How would you compare writing this book with anything you have previously written?

I also write feature films and the process is very different as you have to pack a lot in with very few words compared to what you can express in a book.

 How did you start writing? Was there a particular book or moment in your life that spurned you on?

Many years ago, I read a book that I thought would make a wonderful movie and decided to adapt the book to a screenplay.  I did not reach out to the author until I finished it I wanted to see if I could see it through and I did. Unfortunately, the author himself was also a screenplay writer and was in the process of trying to market  the script.  He was very complimentary to me and encouraged me to continue writing.  It was at that point that I decided I would have to write a book.

How do you organise your writing time? 

I have to work around my day job, so I write mostly in the evenings and on the weekend

Where is your best ‘writing space’; the place where you feel comfortably locked away from the world and able to let your creative juices flow? 

I have an office in my apartment  where I can write.  It’s not the ideal situation, but it works.

And finally, tell us an interesting fact about yourself that not many people know. 

I am able to tap into my dreaming mind to reveal to me solutions to writing challenges when I cannot  make something work.  If I meditate on it and ask my dreaming mind to reveal a solution, it usually provides me with one.  I’ve also experienced out of body experiences where I projected myself astrally.  You see I really believe that if we tapped into our minds on a higher plane, we are all capable of astral projection, telepathy and psycho-kinesis.

*****

About the Author

NoraBorn, raised and educated in New York City, Nora now makes her home in Southern California where, recently divorced, she enjoys a successful career in the media business.  When Nora first began researching The Lightbearers, she went to the New York Public Library and immediately headed for the Egyptian section.  While walking down the empty aisles a book suddenly fell off the shelf and landed at her feet.  It turned out to be Akhenaten’s biography; Nora was immediately captivated with his story and hence the creation of a fantasy about Akhenatena and Nefertiti.

Purchase from Amazon by clicking on the cover

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Promo Blitz & Giveaway for Second Chances

Second Chances – Mega PROMO Blitz

By Jo Briggs
Contemporary Romance
Date to be Published: June 2013
Layla Keyes is back in England.  Much has changed in the five years since she moved to New York to pursue a modeling career – On the outside she appears independent, self-assured and enjoying running her own successful fashion label.
On the inside she is determined to take back what she lost five years ago when misunderstandings allowed a jealous third party to manipulate and interfere in destroying her relationship with Evan Carter.
Evan Carter has spent all that time pretending to not be affected by the loss of Layla from his life.
A twist of fate brings the two back together as they are forced to share a few days alone.
Can their love be rekindled despite the secrets they still have to confess to each other?
EXCERPT
Once satisfied that all her belongings were safely in the boot of her car, Layla slammed the heavy, oak front door closed behind her, fully aware that she was also closing the lid on her relationship with Evan Carter.


She gulped down the rising sensation of guilt she felt at taking the coward’s way out by leaving when the man was still on a business trip. While sharing Evan’s sense of emptiness, Layla was unable to express it in words, but she did know that she could no longer deal with the look of pain on his face when he tried to talk about what happened. Whenever she attempted it, her throat seized up and no sound came out, only an endless stream of tears, which seemed to frustrate him even more.
Layla had not been especially close to her parents, but the abruptness of their death, followed by the traumatic horse-riding accident that resulted in the loss of her baby, had placed an irreparable strain on her two-year relationship with Evan.
Settling into the 4×4, she plugged her phone into the hands-free system and set off for Surrey, where her BFF, Keely lived. She was the only person who knew of Layla’s plan to leave Yorkshire and head to New York. Activating the voice-dial on her phone, which connected to her friend’s home number, she heard a familiar voice come over the speaker. “Hello?”

“Hey, it’s me,” said Layla, unable to conceal her subdued mood. It was becoming more than a regular occurrence and she was fed up of feeling that way. She just hoped a change of scenery would lift her out of her despair.
“Are you on your way?” Keely asked, her voice sounding tight and restrained. 


“Yes,” said Layla, suspecting her friend of holding back on what she truly wanted to say.

“Are you really sure you want to do this?” 
Layla sighed. Keely had been trying to persuade her to stay and work through her problems with Evan ever since she’d revealed her plans to leave. Layla recognised it was going to be hard, but she could see no other solution. The stabbing pain from the healing wound, caused by the accident, and the ache of her breaking heart had merged into one. 
 

Jo Briggs

 
As well as writing, Jo also enjoys reading; her favourite classics include Pride & Prejudice, Persuasion and Jane Eyre having studied English Literature before moving onto Art and Graphic Design. Current genre of choice on her iPad are dark, angsty steamy romances. Particular favourites at the moment are by S.C Stephens, Abbi Glines, R K Lilley, Sylvia Day and Jodi Ellen Malpas. Jo is also a regular visitor to eBook readers anonymous to keep her addiction under control.
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Spotlight & Giveaway for Life, Love & Lemons

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Life, Love, & Lemons by Magan Vernon

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Publication date: August 20th 2013 
Genre: YA Contemporary

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17940365-life-love-lemons?ac=1

Book Description

When life hands you lemons, sometimes you have to say screw the lemons and bail.

Seventeen-year-old Bentley Evans had it all. Then her Dad got laid off. 

Now she has to move across town to a small apartment and leave her life of luxury for public school and a job at the local burger place. Just when her world seems like it’s crumbling she finds solace in the unlikely punk boy next door, Kai Stone. But as their relationship blossoms, a jealous ex-girlfriend and a secret to tell that threatens to bring disaster back into Bentley’s life.

Read an Excerpt

“Are you okay?”

I sat on the cold tile floor of the break room with my head between my grease stained knees. The last person I expected to come back and check on me was Kai.

In my frenzied cry I somehow managed to blurt out that I female problems and that got Jason to find someone else to do the sweeping. No guy ever wants to fight that one and Jason’s face turned red when I mentioned it.

“I’m fine.” I sniffled, hoping that Kai would just go away. I wanted to be alone. How could my friends have done this to me? It was bad enough that I already lost my house, my school, and now some of my best friends since grade school. To top it all off I had some kid with hot pink shoes acting like I was the one with issues.

“Well obviously you’re not.” He reached his hand out toward me.

I crossed my arms firmly over my chest. “I don’t need your help.” It came out whinier than I intended.

Instead of walking away, he just plopped down beside me and spread his long legs out next to mine.

“You can only try and make lemons into lemonade for so long before you just have to say, screw the lemons, and bail.” He stretched his arms out over his head.

I couldn’t help but smile. “I didn’t think anyone but me actually used that expression.”

“Well looks like you were wrong.” He slowly stood up and turned to face me. “Now c’mon and let me show you what else you’re wrong about.”

As I looked at him, I didn’t know what came over me. Maybe it was just my girl emotions working overtime or maybe it was his pleading puppy dog eyes, but for some reason I took his hand and followed him out the back door.

“So where are we going?” I questioned, letting go of his hand as soon as we got outside. I was really glad we exited out the back so no one saw us. I really didn’t want people getting the wrong idea. Kai was a nice guy and everything, but I knew the other co-workers would have a field day if they saw us together. Luckily it was just my little red mini and a giant orange car in the parking lot.

“Just get in and you’ll find out,” He said conspiratorially and opened the passenger door of the giant orange thing.

“What is that?” I pointed at the car, tilting my head.

“This would be my car, a Ford Falcon.” He motioned again for me to get into the car.

Slowly I approached the car and got in as he slid over the hood of the car to the driver’s side.

“Isn’t that like something out of Star Wars?” I asked as he got in and started the car.

“No, that would be the Millennium Falcon, and that would be Star Trek.” He smiled and pulled out of the parking lot.

“Sorry, I’m not up on my geekery.” I laughed and I held out my palms toward him.

“It’s okay I didn’t really expect you to be.” He slid his long fingers over toward me. I thought he was going to reach for my hand but instead he turned on the stereo, letting a loud screaming guy’s voice blast over the speakers.

“Ugh!” I put my hands over my ears and screeched, “What is that?”

Kai sighed and turned down the music. “It’s the Circle Jerks, you know Punk Rock.”

I shook my head. “Never heard of them, maybe you have something else that I might like.” I reached up into the CD visor and browsed through his CD’s. Bad Religion, The Misfits, Dead Kennedys —All these bands I had never heard of and sounded really depressing.

“How about we just turn on the radio?”

“You’re kind of demanding you know that?” Kai looked at me out of the corner of his eye and leaned back in his seat.

“Gee, you’re such a charmer,” I mocked. “But seriously, where are we going anyway?”

“It’s a surprise,” he said mischievously, smiling as he turned down State Street.

“Okay,” I said and pulled my uniform top over my head.

“JESUS, what are you doing?” Kai swerved the car and almost hit the curb in the process, causing me to almost bounce my head off the dashboard.

“Ugh!” I folded the shirt in my lap and then ran my fingers across the straps of my white tank top that I had on underneath. “I just didn’t want to show up to wherever we were going in my uniform; what did you think I was doing? Trying to strip down in the Star Trek car?”

“I don’t know.” He shrugged. “I thought the Falcon had some magical powers or something.”

About the Author

Magan

Magan Vernon is a Young Adult and New Adult writer who lives with her family in the insurance capital of the world. She is in a very serious, fake relationship with Adam Lambert and constantly asks her husband to wear guyliner. He still refuses. She also believes her husband is secretly an alien, disguised as a southern gentleman.
Author Links:
 
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1 ebook copy of Life, Love, & Lemons

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Cover Reveal for The Darkest Joy

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Title: The Darkest Joy

Author: Marata Eros

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Expected release: February 18, 2014

Genre: Dark Romantic Suspense

Age Group: New Adult

A sexy and poignant new adult novel from New York Times bestseller Marata Eros, about two lost souls who find each other in the wake of tragedy, only to learn that love may not be enough to heal the wounds of a dark and tortured past…

Twenty year-old Brooke Starr has escaped the aftermath of a brutal tragedy by abandoning her music studies and moving north to take a summer position as a part-time deck hand on a deep-sea fishing boat. When her survivor’s guilt becomes unbearable, Brooke realizes there’s only one thing she can do to finally erase the pain.

Deep sea fisherman, Chance Taylor, has just wrapped his guitar set at the local saloon when he sees the silhouette of a young woman in repose, the full moon highlighting her shadow as she plummets from a pier too high for diving… into water too cold to survive. Without thinking, he plunges in after her, saving Brooke from drowning.

As Chance works to save her from her own emotional fragility, Brooke finally begins to learn how to save herself. But when their chemistry begins to consume them, Brooke withdraws. She’s determined to be the master of her own destiny… until the past catches up with her in a cataclysmic plan so dark, so final… it threatens their love and their very lives.
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About the Author

Marata ErosMarata Eros is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of dark, romantic new adult novels, including A Terrible Love and its companion novel A Brutal Tenderness. A passionate writer who loves interacting with her readers, Marata lives in South Dakota with her husband.

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Spotlight & Giveaway for New Release of Until Next Time

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Justine Dell and Omnific Publishing are celebrating their newest release, Until Next Time, with us! Giveaways are happening!

Until Next Time Cover

Title: Until Next Time

Author: Justine Dell

Publisher: Omnific Publishing

Release date: August 27, 2013

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Age Group: Adult

Book Description

Piper Downing knows a thing or two about death. She’s spent her entire life working inside her family’s funeral home. Now thirty, Piper’s been running the place on her own for what feels like an eternity. Not that she minds. Losing her parents at a young age, watching her teenage boyfriend die before her eyes, and seeing every type of death and tragedy possible in her line of work did something to her psyche. Piper copes with her job—and the world—by putting every emotion in a box and burying it. She doesn’t get close to people, has no friends, and only has relationships with men for sexual satisfaction. She doesn’t love. Love is selfish.

Macy Quinn Oliver knows a thing or two about death, too. An injury caused him to be honorably discharged as a fighter pilot and now he works as grief counselor at the local VA hospital. He grew up in a family that understands the pain of death, yet embraces what it means. He was taught that death isn’t the end, it is simply… until next time. Even after losing his young bride to brain cancer, Quinn loves. Quinn lives. But because of his vow to his late wife, Quinn will never marry. When he meets Piper at his Grandmother’s wake, her chestnut hair and matching eyes stirs him in a way that hasn’t happened for a long time.

And Quinn has the same effect on Piper. Together they make the perfect pair; a girl who won’t love and a guy who won’t marry. But in order to get their happy ever after, Piper has to learn that love isn’t an end all, and Quinn must make a commitment he promised to never make again.

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About the Author

Justine lives in the Midwest, happily catering to her family, which consists of a horse-obsessed teenage daughter, four dogs, and a husband who is to good to be true. She’s never moved from her hometown, but hopes to grow old in a much warmer climate. During the day she works a normal job with college students who try their best to keep her young. They’ve done a good job thus far. At night, said teenage daughter and her horse require mounds of love and attention. The weekends belong solely to her and her writing. That’s when she morphs into a sticky bug, unable to leave the confines of her computer chair.

She started writing three years ago after seeing a movie that set off a chain reaction she couldn’t have stopped if she’d wanted. It’s not a hobby for her; it’s an obsession. One she loves and one she loves to share. Her debut novel, RECAPTURED DREAMS, and her second book, ALL AMERICAN GIRl, are available now on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and wherever books are sold.

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The author is offering a Kindle Fire loaded with Omnific titles, an Amazon.com Gift Card, and a Swag Pack on her site! Head over and enter by August 30th!

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Blog Tour:Review & Giveaway for The Shadow of Mudflap

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The Shadow of Mudflap (Foxtrot Team 1)  by Christi Snow & MF Smith

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All the proceeds from the sale of this book will go to the Lubbock Red Cross.

Releasing: August 19th, 2013

Book Description

To us, first responders are heroes. But for them, risking their lives is a normal, everyday thing.

Mudflap:

Born the baby of the family, Mudflap has always had something to prove to emerge out of the shadows of his older siblings. He spent eight years as a Special Ops elite sniper and is now a firefighter. But at his heart, he’s just a normal West Texas good old boy who loves his beer, women and football, until the Department of Defense calls him up to say they need his skills again.

Shanae:

Shanae is a first responder of a different sort. She’s a trauma nurse who works on a medical evacuation helicopter team. But while she lives a life full of adrenaline every day, it’s just a cover for her real life, where she hides in the shadows and is secret agent, Shadowfox for the Lubbock Foxtrot Team (LiFT). She’s living the kind of life that most people think exists only in movies and books.

Working for two different branches of the government, Mudflap and Shanae are in a race against time and the terrorists who threaten the very heart of West Texas life, football. They’re working toward the same goal, but find themselves in a confrontation against each other and the lies they’ve each had to hide behind. Can love win out in the end or will the cost be each other and their very lives?

First responders are heroes every day, but this story tells the tale of when they become even more and find love along the way. The key is for them to stay alive so that they can complete their mission and just maybe live happily ever after.

On an ordinary day, they save lives. On an extraordinary day, they save the country.

Watch the Book Trailer

Book Review

The Shadow of Mudflap is an enjoyable story involving secret agents, a domestic terrorist organization, motorcycle gangs, and, at the heart of it all, Texas football.  If you don’t already know this, then let me be clear: Texans take their football seriously!   Snow and Smith do not exaggerate the importance of this sport one bit. I wouldn’t have believed it until I moved to Texas five years ago.  Football is sacred here.

Once I started the book, I couldn’t put it down  and pretty much finished it in one sitting. The characters are well-developed and have their own personal issues to confront as they covertly work to stop a local terrorist organization, the ALT who seems to have targeted the Texas Tech football team to advance its own agenda.

Mudflap Davidson, and yes that’s his real name, is a sexy, gorgeous firefighter who gets pulled into the conflict when the Army asks him to go undercover to watch for suspicious, threatening activities that may harm the Texas Tech football team.  Because of Mudflap’s role in the community and his skills as a former special ops sniper, he is able to easily slip into an undercover role working for the Department of Defense.

When he begins to pursue the pretty paramedic who helped his injured partner during a fire, he has no idea that she is really Shadowfox, an agent for the Lubbock Foxtrot Team, a top secret branch of Homeland Security hiding under the guises of LiFT EMS, who provide air and ambulance medical services in the area. The Foxtrot Team is also investigating the ALT, but neither agency knows about the other’s involvement.

Shanae is drawn to Mudflap’s  good looks and charming personality. However, she has no interest in more than just having a casual fling.  She works in a field dominated by men and based on her observations and limited personal experience, she has concluded that men only use women for sex. So, her motto is to do the same with men, without getting tangled up with emotional attachments. Her last relationship with a CIA agent, Seth, has also led her to believe men are controlling and jealous.  Shanae is willful and independent, and she’s doesn’t think relationships work for her. Ironically, though, she can’t help but see true love is possible since her twin sister is happily married.

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It was heartwarming and fun to watch Mudflap and Shanae’s relationship develop, and their periodic texting is witty, flirty, and heartfelt.  Their online conversations and the sexual chemistry between the two are powerful factors in drawing them together, even though Shanae keeps trying to pull away.

Although Shanae does what she can to keep her distance, Mudflap digs in his heels and continues to tear down all the walls she has erected to secure her heart. He has that wonderful blend of Alpha and sweetness that is hard to resist. Mudflap isn’t overbearing or controlling, and he patiently gives her space while still letting her know that he wants her.  The motorcycle is scene is my favorite where Mudflap’s alpha side emerges, and he bulldozes right through Shanae’s  emotional defenses. Let’s just say, this is one hot scene, where a fire hose might be needed but certainly wouldn’t be welcomed.  Mudflap and Shanae make a great couple, and I like that their relationship progresses over time and doesn’t overshadow the mystery and suspense in trying to stop the ALT’s plans.

This is a pretty quick read with a clear writing style and an engaging storyline that kept my interest. The authors do weave in some humorous situations involving Mudflap, a handgun, and naked people that lightened up the otherwise serious tone of the book.  As you read the book, keep in mind that it’s dangerous to interfere with Texans and football.

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I look forward to what’s next for the Foxtrot Team.

I received a copy of this book from the authors for an honest review.

Rating

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Read an Excerpt

Because everything about this book is set around a college football season, the book is broken down a bit differently than your normal book usually is done. Instead of chapters, there are weeks (i.e. the weeks of the football season) and there are also sections called Halftime Texting. These feature flirty little exchanges of texts between the hero, Mudflap, and the heroine, Shanae. The following is my favorite Halftime Texting section from the book…

Halftime Texting

Shanae: I have two cookies: one is a snickerdoodle, one is a chocolate chip.

Mudflap: Okay, that’s just mean when I haven’t eaten lunch yet.

Shanae: It’s a test. If I offer you one, which one do you take?

Mudflap: You’re testing me?

Shanae: Yes, now answer the question.

Mudflap: I’d take the snickerdoodle.

Shanae: Good answer, but why?

Mudflap: I have sisters. I know better than to get between a girl and her chocolate.

Mudflap: Did I pass?

Shanae: With flying colors.

Pause…

Mudflap: You weren’t just teasing about the cookies, right? I really am hungry.

*****

About the Authors

Christi Snow

Christi SnowAs an avid reader her entire life, Christi Snow always dreamed of writing books that brought to others the kind of joy she felt when she read. But…she never did anything about it besides jot down a few ideas and sparse scenes.

When she turned 41, she decided it was time to go after her dream and started writing. Within four months, she’d written over 150,000 words and hasn’t stopped since.

She’s found her calling by writing about sexy, alpha heroes and smart, tough heroines falling in love and finding their passion. She’s truly living the dream and loving every minute of it.

Her tagline is… Passion and adventure on the road to Happily Ever After. She’s loving this adventure!

www.christi-snow.com

http://smittenwithreading.blogspot.com (book review blog)

https://www.facebook.com/christisnowauthor?ref=hl

https://twitter.com/ChristiSnow

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5849322.Christi_Snow

M.F. Smith

MF SmithMudflap is a morning show personality for 96.3 KLLL in Lubbock, TX. He’s been on the morning show for seven years and in radio for over ten years. He’s entertained people all over the world, and has helped raise money for many non-profit agencies and charities.

Mudflap loves to see people smile and believes everyone deserves a hug.

KLLL radio station website

*****

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Winner’s Choice Ipad Mini (16GB) or Kindle Fire HD (16 GB)

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TastyBook Tours

Follow the Tour: http://tastybooktours.blogspot.com/2013/06/now-booking-release-day-tasty-book_5.html

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Book Blast for A Kiss to Die For

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A Kiss to Die For (Buried Secrets Trilogy #2) by Gail Barrett

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Book Description

Homeless Army veteran Sullivan Turner is nobody’s hero.  His failure to save his fallen comrades proved that.  So when a gutsy social worker gets caught in a drug gang’s crosshairs, he knows he’s the last man who can safeguard her and the pregnant teenagers she’s trying to protect. 

Former debutant Haley Barnes learned the hard way how to survive.  After witnessing a cold-blooded murder, the terrified teenaged runaway changed her identity and hid to save her life.  But when the killer tracks her down and attacks the girls in the homeless shelter she now runs, Haley knows the time has come to stand and fight.  But to bring down the powerful killer she must confront her high-society family’s darkest secrets — and convince wounded warrior Sully Turner he’s the hero she believes.

Read an Excerpt from the Book

“I nearly got you killed tonight.”

“That wasn’t your fault.  You didn’t bring the gang to the house.”

“But I wasn’t there to protect you when they showed up.”

“You were there when it counted.”

“But what if I hadn’t been?”  Raw fear rang in his voice, his eyes so bleak that a heavy lump wedged in her throat.

And suddenly, she realized he wasn’t talking only about her.  His fears went beyond the gang, beyond the danger shadowing their heels, to whatever had caused those flashbacks that plagued his nights.  He believed that he’d failed someone.  This courageous man was tortured by guilt.

But she knew him.  Maybe she didn’t know much about his childhood or family.  Maybe he hadn’t shared many details about his past.  But she knew the essence of who he was.

And she’d bet her life on one immutable fact.  Sully would fight to the death to protect the people he loved.  He would never willingly give up.  Whatever had happened in Afghanistan wasn’t his fault.  How could he ever have doubts about that?

Unable to resist him, she tossed off her blankets and cupped his jaw with her hand, willing him to understand.  “Sully…  You’ve saved me so many times.  Even when you didn’t know me, you risked your life for mine.  You’ve come through for me time after time.  And you’re the bravest man I’ve ever met.”

“You’re wrong.  I’m not who you think I am.”

“You’re exactly who I think you are.”

About the Author

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Gail Barrett is the award-winning author of thirteen romantic suspense novels.  A former RITA® and Daphne finalist, Gail has received the Book Buyer’s Best Award, the Holt Medallion, the Booksellers Best, The National Readers’ Choice Award, and numerous other awards.  She lives with her husband in Western Maryland.  For more information, visit her website: www.gailbarrett.com.

Buy Links

BN:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-kiss-to-die-for-gail-barrett/1114668433?ean=9780373278367

 Amazon: A Kiss to Die for (Buried Secrets)

I read the first book in the trilogy and really enjoyed it.  I look forward to reading this story as well.

Here’s a link to my review: Review of Fatal Exposure

Book Blitz & Author Guest Post for Executive Actions

Executive Actions

Genre: Political Thriller

Executive Actions by Gary Grossman

Book Description

An assassin takes aim at a Presidential candidate during a primary stump speech. The instant he pulls the trigger, the outcome of the election is irrevocably changed. But Democrat Teddy Lodge, an upcoming media sweetheart, isn’t killed. His wife is. As a result, Lodge emerges as the man to beat and the greatest threat to the incumbent President, Morgan Taylor. Under a specific directive from the President, Special Service Agent Scott Roarke delves into the case and begins to unravel a deadly plot that incubated for more than 30 years; designed to alter America’s allegiances in the Middle East. From the very first page, Executive Actions culls events from today’s headlines intersecting with a scenario that’s shockingly real: An insidious plot hatched in the old days of the Soviet Union continues to grow to fruition in the hands of a power hungry Middle East heir to the throne. At its core, a sleeper is awakened to take a prominent role in American Life. Executive Actions is a tense political thriller; an election year page-turner, where both the Presidency and the Constitution are at stake.

Meet Gary Grossman

Guest Post by Author Gary Grossman

Novels That Sound Alarms

     My thanks to SunMountainReviews for inviting me to participate in a blog that weaves my fictional work, EXECUTIVE ACTIONS, published by Diversion Books, into the very real and often dangerous world we inhabit.

I’ll start with an admission.  I have a pair of jobs that nobody actually gave me.  I write thrillers and, as a result, I sound warning bells.   I’m not alone at the job.  Other thriller writers are on the watch, too.  Maybe that’s why after 9/11, the Bush Administration invited thriller and screenwriters to share their own “What If?” scenarios so America’s intelligence community could be better prepared.

A brainstorming session actually took place at the Pentagon where members of the “creative community” discussed possible terrorist scenarios.   They considered achievable scenarios.   A short time later, President Bush advisor Karl Rove met with Jack Valenti, the head of the Motion Picture Association of America and leaders of Hollywood’s major studios and television networks to see what they could come up with to help raise awareness.

Valenti said the meeting was designed to engage Hollywood’s creative thinking and the persuasive skills of top flight writers to assist the ongoing war against terror.   The meaning was not lost on thriller writers either.   And so, movies and books soon reflected the message that the attacks of September 11th were against the civilized world as a whole, that they required a global response, that the anti-terrorism campaign was a war against evil, and that U.S. troops and their families needed support.

I wasn’t part of this informal and perhaps manipulative call to action.  My first novel, EXECUTIVE ACTIONS, came out well after Washington’s outreach to writers.  But even without a presidential or military heavy hand on my shoulder, I certainly felt as a novelist who thinks the unthinkable, I had something personal to contribute to the greater awareness and I could sound alarms that worth hearing.  That feeling has grown the more I’ve written and researched the possibilities.  It’s further evident in my EXECUTIVE ACTIONS sequels, EXECUTIVE TREASON and EXECUTIVE COMMAND.

However, it’s worth noting that I’m actually not a conspiracy theorist or paranoid.  But what’s the old saw?   Sometimes someone is really following you.

Consider recent breaking headlines:

Is the Government Listening into our Phone Conversations?

Top Secret Documents Leaked to the Press

Russian Sleeper Cell Spies Deported

Old Soviet Tactics Return

Smuggled Cuban Missile Parts Destined for North Korea Found in a Panama Canal Raid

The truth is history repeats itself because we don’t learn from the past.   And a good political thriller writer needs only look to yesterday’s news for a plot that’s destined to feel real tomorrow.

For me, I turn to both the front page and the history texts…to accounts as wide ranging as Wall Street industrialists who plotted a coup to remove President Franklin Roosevelt from the White House…to a vitriolic radio host named Father Charles Coughlin who spewed anger across the airwaves years ahead of today’s hate radio hosts…to Cold War fears returning…and to bombings at a marathon finish line that brought an end to whatever innocence was left.

EXECUTIVE ACTIONS is fiction…up to a point.  At its core, it thrusts fictional characters into nightmarish scenarios where basic tenets of American life are at risk, where a sleeper spy cell plot could work, where charismatic political figures might not be who they appear to be.  Also, the thriller dramatically raises questions about the fragility of our election process and whether it’s long past time to consider changes in our succession law.   They’re all alarms.

Fiction?   Not necessarily.  With multiple plots constantly intersecting, my goal as a writer is to engage readers and to keep them guessing from the standpoint of real-world concerns.   I want to expose relevant threats of the day…or at least days within reach.  Maybe that’s why I describe my novels as “political reality.”  The trilogy is rooted in the possible, the imaginable, and against all prayers, perhaps the inevitable.

While I hope EXECUTIVE ACTIONS delivers a fast, exciting and thrilling experience (whether in eBooks, print or Audible book editions), the drama also leads readers to think the unthinkable…to heed the past…to listen to alarms.

The alerts I sound are loud enough to keep women and men (my thrillers have solid crossover appeal) up at night frantically reading and wondering whether “What If?” will become “What’s Next?”  They’re loud enough for us to recognize that we must pay attention to the mistakes of the past to prepare for the future.  Loud enough to hear the echoes from more than 400 years ago when Francis Bacon wrote, “He that will not apply new remedies, must expect new evils, for Time is the greatest innovator.”

*****

About the Author

Gary Grossman color photoGary Grossman, author of EXECUTIVE ACTIONS and the sequel, EXECUTIVE TREASON, is a print and television journalist, an Emmy Award-winning network television producer, and a film and TV historian.
His career has included stints producing for NBC News, ABC, CBS NBC, Fox, PBS, and more than 27 cable networks.
Grossman is partner with Robb Weller in Weller/Grossman Productions, a prolific documentary and service and information television production company. Together, they have produced more than 6,000 programs and earned numerous awards including the prestigious Governor’s Emmy Award for their 1996 USA Network special, “Healing the Hate,” and an Emmy for Best Informational series with the 2002 production of “Wolfgang Puck” for Food Network.
The company’s widely recognized series and specials have aired on NBC, Fox News, CNBC, History Channel, A&E, Discovery Channel, Food Network, Discovery Health, National Geographic Channel, HGTV, Fine Living, Do It Yourself, The Learning Channel, USA Network, and Sci Fi Channel, among other channels.
Grossman earned a Bachelors Degree in Communications from Emerson College in Boston and a Master’s Degree in Urban Affairs from Boston University.
He began his career at 15 as a disc jockey at WHUC, his local radio station in Hudson, New York. He went on to work at Boston television station, WBZ; joined The Boston Globe as a special contributor, and then became a full-time television critic and columnist at The Boston Herald American, before moving to Los Angeles. His articles have also appeared in The New York Times and numerous magazines. He has taught journalism and media classes at Emerson College, Boston University, and USC. Grossman’s two previous acclaimed non-fiction books, Superman: Serial to Cereal and Saturday Morning TV, cover television history.
Grossman lives in Los Angeles with his wife, writer Helene Seifer, and their children Sasha, Zachary, and Jacob. He serves on the Emerson College Board of Trustees and the Boston University Metropolitan Advisory Board.
*****
Author Links:
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18125020-executive-actions (Where a giveaway for a signed copy of the entire Executive trilogy is currently ongoing!)
Gary Grossman’s website: http://www.garygrossman.com
*****
Executive Actions is on sale today for $.99 at all major Ebook retailers.  
Click on the book cover to purchase from Amazon

ARC Review & Author Interview for Hot Pursuit (HOT #1)

Book Cover

Hot Pursuit (Hostile Operations Team #1) by Lynn Raye Harris

Book Description

The last man she ever wanted to see…
Might be the only one who can save her…
Things are about to get HOT in the bayou!

Evie Baker’s luck just ran out. Thanks to an ex-partner with organized crime ties, she’s lost her restaurant, her money, and nearly all her self-respect. Forced to return to her hometown and work as a shampoo girl in her mother’s salon, she doesn’t think her luck can get any worse.

But then someone starts shooting at her, her sullen baby sister is suddenly missing, and the high school heartthrob who stole her heart—and her virginity—is the only man big enough and bad enough to help.

Captain Matt “Richie Rich” Girard can’t afford to get involved. He’s already on the verge of a court-martial after a Top Secret op gone wrong, and he’s been ordered to stay out of trouble while he’s home for his sister’s wedding.

But when Evie’s ex-partner turns up dead, staying out of trouble is the last thing on Matt’s mind. He failed Evie once before; he can’t fail her again. If he’s going to protect her from a killer, and find her sister before time runs out, he’ll have to risk his entire future—and both their lives—to do it.

Book Review

Romantic suspense revolving around military heroes and heroines  is one of my favorite genres, and I was so excited to learn about the new Hostile Operation Team series that Lynn Raye Harris has created and have the opportunity to review the first book, Hot Pursuit.

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This first book introduces us to HOT, a new special ops force within the U.S. Army and centers on Captain Matt “Richie Rich” Girard’s team.  Matt is the hero of this book, and when the story opens, he is back in his hometown of Rochambeau, Louisiana, waiting for an upcoming hearing that will determine his future with HOT because of the team’s last failed mission where two team members were killed.  Matt is not in a good emotional place at this point. He’s weary, worried, and, I sense a deep loneliness within him.

Matt Girard

When he walks into the local beauty salon for a haircut, I’m sure he doesn’t expect to see the woman he hurt ten years ago. Evie Baker certainly doesn’t want to face the handsome, wealthy, popular Matt in front of a bunch of gossips and especially now, when she thinks she’s hit rock bottom.  After losing her beloved restaurant because of scheming accountant and former lover, Evie has been forced to return home to try to start her life all over again while working in her mother’s hair salon…the same one Matt enters.

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Matt and Evie were close childhood friends, but then puberty hit, and Matt left her behind when he began to notice other girls. However, Evie developed a serious crush on Matt until he humiliated her and broke her heart after she gave him her most precious gift.

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To make the situation even worse, everyone in the town heard about the scandal. Matt leaves for college soon after, while Evie is left to deal with the swirling rumors and hurtful remarks.

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In the opening scene, Evie is hiding out, hoping to avoid Matt, and just as she’s about to slip out the back door, her mother instigates their awkward confrontation with the “Don’t you remember my daughter?” line. I couldn’t help but roll my eyes because that is just like something my mother would do to me. So, I connected with Evie right from the get-go. The teenage years are difficult and I’m sure most of us have our own embarrassing memories that we’d rather forget.

I also grew up in a small town where it doesn’t take much to become grist for the gossip mill.

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Whereas, I probably would have taken the easy way out—using the back door—Evie stands up straight, holds her head high, and approaches Matt in front of all those inquiring eyes. Go Evie!

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Evie is an emotionally strong woman. I admire that even after losing everything, she isn’t a “woe is me,” victim. I also like that she doesn’t totally blame Matt for the pain he caused. She acknowledges her part in the situation and, she is upfront with him about what really hurt her. When she realizes she needs Matt’s help to find her missing sister, she puts the past aside without constantly harping on it.  Moreover, Evie handles herself well in dangerous situations. One of the best scenes in the book is the intense car chase with Evie behind the wheel listening as Matt coaches her on how to outmaneuver their chasers.  The scene is so vivid that I felt as if I were watching it take place.

Overall, Evie isn’t reckless, but she also doesn’t hesitate to jump into the fray just in case Matt needs to be saved:

“I thought you were going to wait.”

Her wild gaze landed on his face. “You took so long I thought something happened. I was coming to help.”

Matt closed his eyes. Saints preserve him from women who thought he couldn’t take care of himself.”

I like her gumption and I think, secretly, Matt does too!

Yes, I was disappointed in Matt for his thoughtless behavior, and, initially, I wasn’t sure I was going to like him, but as his character developed and his painful past growing up in a dysfunctional family is revealed, I was able to empathize with him, even though what he did was absolutely wrong.  Plus, he just melts my butter when he slips into using Cajun French to comfort and soothe Evie.

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It’s a challenge to smoothly incorporate a romance into an action-packed plot fraught with danger, but Harris does it well so that the romance is believable, and the intimate scenes between them are appropriate to the situation.  I always struggle with plots where the couple temporarily forgets their lives are in danger, and even though the clock ticks away, they don’t seem to have a problem getting into the mood for sex. Kudos to Harris for making it work.

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I can feel the strong connection that still exists between Matt and Evie. The depth of their childhood friendship and their simmering sexual chemistry make it difficult for them to remain emotionally distant from each other.  I think Matt realizes this when he first sees Evie:

“There was something about having her near, something that sparked inside him and made him feel somewhat human again. He didn’t know why, and he didn’t know if it would last.

But he liked it. For the first time in months, he felt as if he could breathe again. As if he’d come home for real instead of simply going through the motions.”

And for Evie, Matt has always been more than a teenage crush:

 “…here she stood ready to lose herself in him one more time. Because there’d always been more between them than just one night. Because they went back a long ways, and she’d love him as a friend long before she’d ever fallen for him as a man.” 

Over and over in the story, Matt shows Evie that he is no longer the self-absorbed, inconsiderate jerk she remembers, and she fears that being around the man Matt has become puts her heart in jeopardy of being broken again. However, both have issues to resolve before they can take their feelings for each other to the next level. Evie doesn’t understand why Matt would choose to put his life in danger every day, and Matt doesn’t feel he has anything to offer Evie since his future is so uncertain. For all he knows, he may end up in a military prison for his recent actions.

Hot Pursuit has a well-written, unified storyline that brings readers full circle by its conclusion. The plot contains several surprises that I didn’t foresee

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that raise the stakes and build to an exciting, suspenseful climax.

Every scene contains a complication or conflict so there is never a lull in the action or drama, and I was eagerly turning the pages to see what would happen next.

To sum up, I am now a HOT fan and encourage all your romantic suspense readers to check out this hawt series!

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I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  Since the quotes are from a pre-published copy, they may have changed or been omitted from the final version.

Rating

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About the Author

LRHarrisUSA Today bestselling author Lynn Raye Harris burst onto the scene when she won a writing contest held by Harlequin. The prize was an editor for a year — but only six months later, Lynn sold her first novel.

Lynn has written over fifteen novels for Harlequin and been nominated for several awards, including the Romance Writer’s of American’s Golden Heart award and the National Readers Choice Awards.

Lynn lives in Alabama with her handsome former-military husband and two crazy cats.

Author Links

Website: http://www.LynnRayeHarris.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorLynnRayeHarris

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LynnRayeHarris

Interview with Lynn Raye Harris

I want to give a huge thanks to Lynn for taking the time to allow me to interview her about the HOT series! 

Can you tell us about yourself and what led you to begin writing?

I was raised in a military family and then I married a military man.  I was also a voracious reader from an early age, and I loved romance novels when I first read them as a pre-teen.  I always knew I wanted to write, but I didn’t always know what I wanted to write about.  One day, my husband bought me a computer and told me to stop talking about it and just do it.  That was the beginning and my first romance novel was a huge 800-page medieval romance.  It did not get published (rightfully so), but I had so much fun I kept writing.  Life got in the way, as it often does, but I got serious about getting published around 2005.  In 2008, I won a contest sponsored by Harlequin – and they bought my first book.  I’ve sold 20 books to them, and now I’m working on my own series, which is the HOT series.

Your new book Hot Pursuit is the first in the new Hostile Operations Team (HOT) series. What inspired the creation of this series?

I was actually working on this story before I sold to Harlequin!  I loved stories about military guys and I wanted to write my own.  Being married to a military guy, and being raised in a military family, I kinda know the lingo.  I had to make up the team, obviously, and some of what they do isn’t strictly authentic – but that’s why I made them up.  My world, my rules.  😉

Why did you choose Louisiana as the primary setting for this book?

I’ve lived in Louisiana, though not in Cajun country, and have family who still live around New Orleans.  It’s such a wonderful culture, so rich and full of interesting people – and the food!  Oh, there’s nothing like Cajun/Creole cooking.  Mmm.

Which character is your favorite and why?

Oh my.  Well, I love Evie’s grit but I also love a tortured hero, so I don’t know.  I love them both!

What have been the most enjoyable and challenging experiences for you in creating this series/ writing this book?

I think what’s both enjoyable and challenging is keeping the suspense turned up while also keeping the romance hot and tense.  I hate when characters stop in the middle of a run for their lives to have sex, so I knew that wasn’t going to happen here.  But I needed it to still be romantic and filled with romantic tension while they solved the puzzle.  As for the whole series, I think I just love these guys so much and can’t wait to write all the books.  OTOH, I worry about doing them justice.  It’s a challenge to keep the stories fresh and compelling!

What is your favorite scene in the book?

Well, I love the love scenes, of course.  But I also love when Evie has to drive the getaway car.  I researched that quite heavily.  I based it on teenage antics on dirt roads and real defensive driving.  Alas, I have not actually spun a car into a 180 myself. 😉  But there’s always time for that, heh.

Which scene was the most difficult for you to write?

Evie telling her mother that her sister was missing.  I tried it several different ways, and then I realized that the best way was for the scene to be in Matt’s point of view.  Much too emotional to be in Evie’s POV for that scene!

If you were to develop a musical playlist to accompany Hot Pursuit what would you choose as the #1 song, and why?

I’m so bad at this kind of thing!  Some books I know exactly what the music is.  Others I don’t.  And this is one where I can’t think of the song I’d choose.  Truthfully, I probably listened to a lot of Bon Jovi while writing it. 😉  Also, when I first started this one, I was living in Hawaii – I’m going to guess I listened to some Hawaiian music too!

What authors have had a significant influence on your writing?

I’ve read so much that I can’t say for certain.  I’m like a giant sieve and I hope that I’ve distilled all the best I can from what I’ve read.  For romantic suspense in particular, though, I’d name Linda Howard, Cindy Gerard, Roxanne St. Claire, and Suzanne Brockmann.  I hope I’m half as good as they are because they are all amazing writers!

What can we anticipate/expect from the next book in the series?  Will each book in the series be able to stand alone?

This is the fun part!  Next up is a novella called Hot Mess.  It’s about a new recruit to the HOT world, Sam “Knight Rider” McKnight and his best friend’s little sister, Georgeanne Hayes.  It’s very hot and steamy!  Georgie has always been in love with Sam, but he’s always kept her off limits.  Then she gets tangled up with some bad guys and Sam has to take her to a safe house while HOT investigates.  Oh my, the things they get up to at that safe house…. 😉

After Hot Mess, which should be out in September, there’s Dangerously Hot, which is about Kevin “Big Mac” MacDonald and the woman he loved and lost, Lucky San Ramos.  I hope to have their book ready to go by Valentine’s Day!  After that, there’ll be Hot Shot, which is about Jack “Hawk” Hunter.  If I’m very lucky and inspired, that book will be out by next summer.  All the stories will be standalone at this point!  Of course they’re fun when read as a set, but I don’t intend to leave anything unsolved with any of the romances from one book to the next.

*****

Start the series now:

Click on the book cover to purchase from Amazon

 

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Since Lynn mentioned that she listened to Bon Jovi while writing Hot Pursuit,  I picked a couple of their songs that I found relevant to Matt & Evie.

Although Matt hurt Evie in the past, he’s here for her now, even risking his career to help her save her sister.

Bon Jovi “I’ll Be There for You”

Evie isn’t happy about having to return to her hometown where she always felt she never quite fit in.  Yet, it’s here where she finds the support and love that she needs to get her through the tough times.

Bon Jovi & Jennifer Nettles:  “Who Says You can’t Go Home Again.” 

Series Spotlight: Review & Giveaway for Burned in Shadows (Shadow Unit #2)

BURNED IN SHADOWS Tour button

Series Spotlight: Shadow Unit Series

Enslaved in Shadows (Shadow Unit #1)

enslaved in shadows

Published: June 18, 2012

Book Description

A man’s Past leads to his Future……

Agent Stone of the Shadow Unit’s job is simple, most days. Work in the Shadows, police his own Kind.

When an unwanted assignment turns out to be his darkest fantasy from the past, Draven can’t help but be conflicted by the memories of the past and his responsibilities in the future. But his decision has been made.

The Heart of a woman is Tested……..

Jes can’t let the tall dark agent back into her life.

How can she trust any man after what she’s endured. Years of abuse have broken her down and she doesn’t have room for more. The man she turns to for help hasn’t abused her physically but he’s tormented her emotionally. A past betrayal left her scarred, but also brought her life.

Can she accept him into her heart and trust him again?

One will survive and adapt, the other will realize hearts can be mended even if it’s a bit too late.

The road to forgiveness sometimes only brings more pain. Unexpected events set their lives on two separate tracks leading to one outcome. Lives will be changed and an emotional battle to save their souls will leave them both trapped and enslaved in their need for one another.

AVAILABLE AT: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | ARe

Burned in Shadows (Shadow Unit #2) by Tigris Eden

Burned in Shadows cover

Publication Date: July 30, 2013

Book Description

Royce Zarides has accepted his hand dealt by fate. He’s loved and left far too many women. In the bedroom that is. But one kiss from Belinda Raine Ignis was all it took for his eyes to open. Is she really the woman meant for him and his brother Ronin? Or will history only repeat itself? That’s the million dollar question he doesn’t want to answer.

Ronin does not believe that Belinda is for him and his brother. But one night with her isn’t enough. Even when he sees her for who and what she really is, Ronin still has a hard time expressing his emotions where Belinda is concerned, and time is running out now that she’s to ascend to the status of Matria of the Phoenix Enclave.

Belinda (Bells) Ignis is good at ignoring men. She’s had her share of heartache. Jilted at the altar by her first love, she’s sworn all men off for good. Her mother and Matria of her community has other plans in mind, as well as the Zarides brothers. When faced with the heated glances of Ronin and the smooth tongue of Royce, what’s a girl to do?

The clock is ticking down for certain members of the Shadow Unit. Draven assumed dead, leaves a sour taste in every ones mouth. Jes’ new found abilities make for a great addition to the team. But when things seem to settle, they only get worse, as the team sets out to discover the origins of Mr. Black and the notorious Red Sun Organization. Secrets are uncovered and deals are made that result in a deadly blow to all involved.

AVAILABLE AT: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | ARe

Book Review

I read Enslaved in Shadows last year and enjoyed the creative paranormal storyline and the romance between Jesminda (Jes) and Agent Draven Stone of Shadow Unit, a paranormal agency that polices the supernatural community. Draven is a werewolf who finds himself falling in love with Jesminda, despite the fact that she is a human. After one brief, but life-altering encounter between them in five years ago, they are reunited when Jes seeks Shadow Unit’s protection and help against her sadistic, human ex-husband who has been kidnapping and torturing vampires so he can sell their blood on the black market.  No matter how hard, Draven tries to fight his feelings for Jes, his wolf knows she is his soul mate. However, Jes’s husband physically and emotionally abused her so terribly, that she questions whether she will ever be able to love and trust another man. Just as Jes and Draven begin to make progress in their relationship, a series of shocking events occur at the end of Enslaved in Shadows that left me anxiously waiting to see what’s next for them.

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When I realized Burned in Shadows was available for review, I jumped on the chance to read and review the sequel. I didn’t even bother to read the book’s description because I was already invested in the plot. So when I soon discovered that the featured love story involves Jes’s best friend Bells and the twins Royce and Ronin Zarides, who are also Shadow Agents, all I could say was, “Uh…oh, what I have gotten myself into?” followed a series of “Oh, my!’s” as I followed their love story.

There isn’t a love triangle here. No, it’s just the opposite. When Royce and Ronin were born, they shared the same umbilical cord and their bond is so intense that when they find the woman who is meant for them, she will have to love both of them.  After Bells unknowingly passes the “test” indicating  she is their intended mate, they begin to jointly pursue her.  The leading love story is a ménage a trois, and the book contains  scenes with graphic sex and light bondage between Bells and the Zarides brothers.

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Bells is a Phoenix and heir to the throne ruling over Phoenix House. As she prepares to become the new reigning monarch, she knows that even though she is secretly attracted to both Royce and Ronin, her mother would never approve of this type of relationship.  Royce and Ronin are a rare supernatural species and the mystery of their origins and the emotional wounds both carry are revealed.  Because of a mistake in the past that cost both brothers dearly, they are a bit reluctant to claim Bells for fear of being hurt again. All three characters share their POVs, and, while the multiple perspectives do enrich the story, there were places where the switch in POV between Royce and Ronin is confusing and I’m not exactly sure which one of the brother’s POV is being expressed.  While Bells and the brothers grapple with the growing intensity of their feelings for each other, Bells mother is making other plans for her daughter’s future.

Burned in Shadows picks up Jes and Draven’s story right where the first book ended.  However, both Jes and Draven have undergone significant changes in their physicality and personalities, all thanks to the mysterious leader of the Red Sun Organization.  Jes discovers that she is no longer human, but no one is exactly sure what she is now. Her unexplained powers continue to emerge and surprise everyone.  Jes is now a “superwoman” with incredible strength and abilities that put her in the best position to go undercover to find Draven.  Even though no one is certain of the long term effects of Jes’s alteration, I have to admit I like the new Jes. Her physical strength and improved fighting skills have boosted her confidence. She is determined to never be the frightened, weak, vulnerable woman she was when she first came to the Shadow Unit for help.

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Now, she will have to utilize every ounce of her physical and emotional strength to survive her immersion into the enemy’s camp.   It is heart wrenching at times as she is forced to watch her beloved with another woman. Yes, Melissa is back and has sunk her claws deep into Draven.  There aren’t many antagonists that truly bring out my anger, but Melissa’s character is one of those few who push my buttons, and I keep my fingers crossed that Jes will make her pay for the pain she has caused.

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I still have questions about how Melissa became involved with the Red Sun Organization and what role, if any, she played in Draven’s capture and alterations.  Draven is a dreamy, lovable hero is the first book, but now he tries my patience. All I can say is there is no doubt that Jes loves him and I admire her persistence despite Draven’s cruelty and the hopelessness of the situation.

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Eden does a great job with developing  well-rounded central characters who are easy to care about and whose personal stories and secrets easily keep my interest. However, I feel this paranormal world still needs to be fleshed out.  The Red Sun organization is still sketchy to me. I’m not sure about their purpose or motives and I’d like more details and description about the interactions between humans and the supernaturals who live among them.  The series is set in Louisiana, a place steeped in supernatural lore, but so far there isn’t a strong connection between the setting, characters, and conflicts.

The action heats up in toward the end of the book with lots of unexpected twists that kept me eagerly turning the pages and the epilogue sets up the next story involving Gabe and leaves us hanging as we finally learn the truth about his identity. This is a series for mature audiences and contains violent and explicit sexual content.

Note: I received a proof of this book from the author for an honest review, so I did not consider any editing/proofreading issues as part of my criteria for the book’s rating.

Rating

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About the Author

Author-Tigris-Eden-Avatar-232x300There is really not much to say… I love to write, read, and listen to music. My attempt at a music career sadly ended at the Apollo one warm night in May. LOL (Side note: I was not booed just outdone by two munchkins rapping to Biggy Smalls, they were good.

Military brat extraordinaire; have traveled to a lot of interesting places.  This February I will be going over to the other side of the pond where I will spend two weeks in Europe.  I will be in Cambridge, London, Paris, Versailles, Bruges, and hopefully Cardiff.

The very first time I put pen to paper in story fashion (for fun), was in 6th grade.  The story was called, The Case of The Missing Pepperoni. It was a cute mystery where all the ingredients and shop appliances came to life when the store owner closed up for the evening.  See, pretty boring stuff. I always say I’m not the interesting one, but the people around me.

Connect with Tigris:

Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest

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Tigris is giving away the following prizes at the end of her tour:

Grand Prize

 1 Signature fragrance of Burned and Enslaved and a $10 Gift Card to Amazon or B&N, Genesis Project Magnets and Bookmarks

Runner-up 

$10 Gift Card to Amazon or B&N

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BURNED IN SHADOWS Tour Schedule:

8/19- Book Lovin’ Mamas

http://booklovinmamas.com

8/19- Offbeat Vagabond

http://offbeatvagabond.blogspot.com/

8/20- Celestial Reviews

http://cecesreviews.blogspot.com/

8/20- The Snarkology

http://melissasnark.blogspot.com/

8/20-Larissa’s Bookish Life

http://www.larissaslife.com/

8/21- United by Books

http://unitedbybooks.blogspot.com/

8/21- Book Pages & Dripping Ink

http://bookpagesanddrippingink.blogspot.com/

8/22 – Book Monster Reviews

http://www.bookmonsterreviews.com/

8/22- LITERAL ADDICTION

http://www.literaladdiction.com/

8/22- Wicked Readings by Tawania

http://www.wickedreadingsbytawania.blogspot.com/

8/23- Musings From An Addicted Reader

http://musingsfromanaddictedreader.blogspot.com/

8/23- Froggarita’s Bookcase

http://www.froggaritasbookcase.com/

8/23- Why I Can’t Stop Reading

http://whyicantstopreading.wordpress.com/

8/24- You Gotta Read Reviews

http://yougottaread.com/

8/24- Dalene’s Book Reviews

http://www.dalenesbookreviews.blogspot.com/

8/24- Close Encounters of the Night Kind

http://closeencounterswiththenightkind.blogspot.com/

8/25- Just Paranormal Romance

http://www.justparanormalromance.com/

8/25- Sun Mountain Reviews

https://sunmountainreviews.wordpress.com/

8/25- Sassy Book Lovers

http://sassybooklovers.blogspot.com/

8/25- Reading Between the Wines

http://www.readingbetweenthewinesbookclub.com/

ARC Review of Against the Mark (The Raines of Wind Canyon #9)

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Release Date: August 27, 2013

Against the Mark (Raines of Wind Canyon #9) by Kat Martin

Book Description

The perfect murder is a work of art

In one catastrophic instant, Haley Warren’s estranged father was taken from her. She never got the chance to reconnect with him, so now she’s doing it the only way she’s got left: by proving the explosion that killed him was no accident.

When Tyler Brodie, the provocative and handsome P.I. hired by Haley, discovers that her father was investigating a suspected art theft, he knows his death is no coincidence. After all, tens of millions of dollars worth of stolen art could motivate a thief to go to any lengths—including getting rid of anyone poking around where they don’t belong.

As Haley and Ty get closer to the truth, the truth gets ugly: Did Haley’s dad know too much…or was he in on the take? And although Ty’s a consummate professional, he’s having trouble focusing on the facts of the case, and not the figure of his gorgeous client. The two are determined to get to the bottom of the case, even if it means they die trying.

Book Review

If you are already a fan of Kat Martin’s romantic suspense novels, then you will not be disappointed with Against the Mark, the latest upcoming release in The Raines of Canyon series.  Even though I have only read one other book in the series, I had no problem jumping into this book and getting immersed in the featured romance and murder investigation into an art theft ring.

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Martin has written a well-developed suspense plot that complements an equally well-developed romance between Ty Brodie, an easy-going country boy from Texas and Haley Warren, a somewhat uptight socialite from Chicago. Because of his friendship to Haley’s great-aunt, Ty agrees to investigate into the supposed accidental death of Haley’s father three months ago.  Although the attraction between Ty and Haley is instantaneous, their romance develops at a slower, more realistic pace.

Ty is an all-around great hero. He’s handsome, confident and as a former special ops Marine, he has the skills and experience to handle himself and protect Haley in dangerous situations.  His charisma, integrity, and openness with Haley make him swoon worthy.

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What I like best about Ty  is that he is always honest with Haley, and he doesn’t play emotional games. He never withholds his feelings to leave Haley (and me as a reader) in a state of perpetual angst.

It took a while before I really warmed up to Haley. However, she is a dynamic character who experiences the most change and emotional growth over the course of the book. At first she struck me as superficial, a woman who places too much importance on money and appearances.  Even Ty is initially put off by her attitude. Yet, as more and more of Haley’s backstory is revealed, I realized that her perceptions have, to a large degree, been skewed by her mother’s ideology and values.  Although she have may started the investigation into her father’s death out of a sense of guilt, I do like that Haley refuses to stop probing into her father’s death even when the level of danger intensifies.  It is when Haley puts her step-mother’s well being above her own feelings that I started to appreciate her as a heroine.

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Haley hasn’t had much experience with men or with being in love. She really doesn’t understand all the hoopla about sex until she kisses Ty.  He awakens a side of passion and sensuality within her that no one else ever has.

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Their physical relationship paves the way for them to connect on a much deeper level. Ty is not perfect. He has a dark side that emerges whenever he’s engaged in dangerous, adrenaline-pumping situations. Instead of being pushed away, Haley knows exactly how to deal with and calm an edgy, angry Ty. Unfortunately, Haley’s insecurities and single-minded attitude about marriage creates unnecessary complications and emotional pain in the latter part of the book.

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Martin has created a believable plot about art theft , and I enjoyed learning more about the intricate process of creating a forgery.

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The mystery behind Haley’s father’s death becomes clear early in the book, but the author does throw in unexpected plot twists that kept me off guard.

The tension and suspense build as Ty and Haley find themselves in increasingly greater danger as they work together to uncover and capture the mastermind behind the recent stolen art.  I found the scene where police are led to the ringleader somewhat anticlimactic, but, just when I thought I had the resolution figured out, Martin shakes things up so  the outcome was not as clear cut as I expected.

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The supporting characters all play a meaningful role in facilitating the plot and they add texture and liveliness to round out this fictitious world Martin has created. Moreover, the spark between Ty’s cousin, Dylan and Haley’s best friend, Lane has been ignited, and now I look forward to their future love story.

I received an ARC of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Rating

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About the Author

Kat Martin

Kathleen Kelly Martin (aka Kathy Lawrence, Kasey Mars)

Kathleen Kelly was born on 14 July 1947 in the Central Valley of California, USA. She obtained a degree in Anthropology and History from the University of California in Santa Barbara. She was a real estate broker, when she met her future husband, Larry Jay Martin. A short time after the two became acquainted, Larry asked her to read an unpublished manuscript of an historical western he’d written. Kat fell in love with both the book and the author! Then, after doing some editing for him, she thought she’d try her own hand at writing. She moved on to become a full time writer.

Punlished since 1988, she singed her books with her married name, Kat Martin, but she also used two pseudonyms: Kathy Lawrence for a book incollaboration with her husband Larry Jay Martin, and Kasey Marx for her first contemporary romances. The New York Times bestselling writer, among her many awards, has won the prestigious RT Book Review Magazine Career Achievement Award. To date, Kat has over eleven million copies of her books in print. She has been published in seventeen foreign countries, including England, South Africa, Spain, Argentina, Germany, Italy, Greece, Norway, Sweden, Russia, Bulgaria, China, and Korea.

Currently residing with her husband, a Western-writer and photographer, in Missoula, Montana, USA. But when they are not writing, they also enjoy skiing and traveling, particularly to Europe.

“I’ve always loved books. I was an avid reader, with any number of my own stories rolling around in my head. Writing them down seemed a logical step.”

“I love anything old,” Kat says. “I love to travel and especially like to visit the places where my books are set. My husband and I often stay in out-of-the-way inns and houses built in times past. It’s fun and it gives a wonderful sense of a by-gone era.”  (from Goodreads profile)

Author Links

Website: http://www.katbooks.com

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/49381.Kat_Martin

Twitter: luvromance

Check out my review of Against the Storm (The Raines of Wind Canyon #4)

Cover Reveal for Slick as Ides

Slick As Ides

Slick as Ides by Chanse Lowell

Genre: New Adult Romance
Release Date: September, 2013

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18301798-slick-as-ides

Book Description

What happens when a germophobe, elusive computer hacking genius has to stop to fuel up her car and it’s stolen right from under her nose by a handsome vagrant? Revenge of course. 
 
Only he’s no vagrant… 
 
He’s a computer hacking genius, too, and her competition. Curses along with inhibitions—fly out the window and through the phone when he calls repeatedly to harasses her. Who will win the upper-hand, if there is such a thing, between these two stubborn, obnoxious people?
*****

About the Author

Chanse grew up in the desert southwest and still lives there with her husband, children, and pet cactus. She’s addicted to three things: reading erotica, writing erotica and sandwiches with a side of erotica to aid with digestion. She grew up watching programs with science fiction and historical fiction themes, and is determined she can combine her three favorite genres, creating a new breed of novel with scifi, historical and smut sandwiched in the middle.The last thing she ever thought she’d do was pursue her dream to be a writer since her family tends to keep her busy. When she was introduced to fan fiction, she realized she wanted to see more science fiction and historical fiction to fill in the gap with lots of naughtiness thrown in, of course. Her true passion is creating her own worlds from scratch, letting her imagination go and take her to another place.She has two novels coming out soon, Sleeves a science fiction erotica and Knots, a contemporary BDSM that shows the softer, tender side of a Dom/sub relationship. Having recently entered the lifestyle and discovering she’s a submissive herself has opened her eyes to how few stories there are exploring the softer side of the lifestyle. She enjoys chatting online with others with similar kinky interests and has advisers in the lifestyle that help make sure her stories remain true and don’t veer off into outer space. Although aliens probably enjoy kink, too, since they like to dress in rubber fetish-wear while traveling. At least that’s her argument for why her new genre she’s created is valid.

Website: http://chanselowell.blogspot.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/#!/chanse.lowell.1

Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/ChanseLowellWrites

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ChanseLowell

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/ChanseLowell

 

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Spotlight for The Devil You Know

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Deziree Davanzatti is a thief by trade and to keep herself occupied between jobs, she owns and operates Onyx, a trendy nightclub for the supernatural citizens of New York City.
What else would a 400-something year old demon-human hybrid do with her spare time?
Following a drunken night of questionable decisions, the vampire Michael “Vegas” Tremayne leaves town with no explanation. Dez is left wondering if they made a mistake and if it cost her a price she wasn’t willing to pay – her best friend and confidant.
When he returns after two weeks of no contact, he comes bearing grave news that could potentially change the world forever….or end it all together. To make matters worse, they suspect that someone they know may be behind it all.
An extremely dangerous chain of events has been set in motion and it is up to Dez and Vegas, with the help of his brother Lucas, to find a way to stop it.
From the author of Burning, the short story prequel, comes The Devil You Know, the first full length novel in the Demon Legacy series by J.M. Gregoire.

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The Devil You Know
Demon Legacy Series Book One
By J.M. Gregoire
Genre: Urban Fantasy / Paranormal Romance
Publisher: J.M. Gregoire Books
Release Date: July 30, 2013
Click here to add The Devil You Know to your Goodreads shelf!
Purchase Links
Amazon – $2.99 (INCLUDES BURNING, THE SHORT STORY PREQUEL)

READ AN EXCERPT:
The time seemed to pass quickly. Deziree had taken a second to pan around the room and felt the mild pangs of disappointed when she didn’t see Vegas anywhere. She took a look over the main bar and realized that some of the bottles were getting a low.
“Hey Danni,” she called to the bartender, “I’m going to take a break on the roof. When I get back, I will run out back and grab some refills.”
As she stepped out of the roof-access door onto the flat expanse of building, Deziree opened her pack of cigarettes, took one out, put it to her lips and lit it. She could feel his presence as she took her first drag. She exhaled and smiled when she heard his voice behind her.
“Those are bad for you, you know.”
When she spun around, he was standing a few paces away.
“Hey you.” As Deziree gazed at Vegas, her smile didn’t attenuate. Besides the fact that he was her best friend, she loved to look at him. He was by far the most beautiful creature she’d laid eyes on in her extraordinarily long life. He was stereotypically hot guy. Tall, dark and every bit of him was dangerous. He was six-two or three, the top of his smooth, bald head towering above her. She couldn’t imagine the number of razors he’d gone through over the centuries to keep that look. He had the perfectly chiseled appearance of a deadly hunter. Most people would have to spend hours in the gym every day for a body like that, but his undead status meant he didn’t even have to try. He would look like that forever. His eyes were the only tell-tale sign that he was a vampire. Those irises – each a pure gleaming gold with a dark-brown ring bordering the edge – were the only giveaway to the general public of what he was. She, on the other hand, could feel it. She could feel the electricity crackle in the air whenever her was around. In more than four hundred years, she had never met someone as exciting as Vegas, and she wanted him from the moment they first met. Why did we fight it?
“Can I bum one off you?” He nodded his head toward the cigarettes.
“You would make a terrible spokesperson for anti-smoking public service announcements,” she replied with a snarky tone. As she fumbled with the pack of cigarettes, he stepped closer to her. Her nerves hummed.
With a predatory smile that revealed his intentions, he closed what little remaining space there was between them. Reaching his hand around the back of her neck and tilting her head, he brought his lips down to meet hers. Her head spun with euphoria. His scent washed away every negative thought she’d had about him in the last two weeks. When the kiss finally broke, it was not her doing. Taking a deep breath, she opened her eyes to see that he had that his smile had grown wicked.
“You didn’t answer me on the phone,” he purred. “Did you miss me?”
“Well, with the harem of men I have at my disposal, I couldn’t find the time to miss someone I only had a little fling with.” She stepped back and with a smirk, she added, “I mean, I didn’t even get breakfast.”
Vegas dropped his gaze. “I honestly am sorry about that. I don’t want you to get the wrong idea. I had a fantastic time and I didn’t want to leave, but I was contracted at the last minute and it was time-sensitive.”
Deziree smiled. “I’m just fucking with you, Michael. I’m not mad. I mean, I was initially. But I figured something must have happened. A call or a text would have been nice, but shit happens, right?”
“Well,” he said, his wicked grin firmly in place and his eyebrow cocked, “let me make it up to you.”
“We’ll see about that,” she replied as her heart pounded in her chest.
“I can hear your heart racing.” Stepping forward, he leaned down and kissed her again. When he broke away again, she found herself wishing that she didn’t have to go back to work. He leaned his forehead on hers and whispered, “My place when you get out?”
“Sure,” was her quick breathy reply.
“I have a few things to take care of,” he said quietly, “and then I will meet you here around the time you guys usually lock up.”
She nodded in response, and he turned, walked to the edge of the roof and dropped off the side. After standing there for a few moments in a daze, she finished her cigarette and headed back through the roof-access door to finish her shift.

WHAT THE REVIEWERS ARE SAYING:
Ginny of PureTextuality.com (5 Stars)ginny review
Brandy from Romancebookworm Reviews (5 Stars)
brandy review
Miss Kris from Ghosties, Vampires, and Books OH MY! (5 Stars)
ghosties review
AUTHOR BIO
J.M. Gregoire Author PicJ.M. Gregoire was born and raised in New Hampshire, USA and despite her abhorrence for any season that dares to drop to a temperature below seventy degrees, she still currently resides there with her two children and her two cats. Always a passionate reader, her love of urban fantasy books eventually morphed into a love of writing them. She is currently working on the Demon Legacy series and has an urban fantasy thriller project coming up that will be co-written with one of her best friends and favorite authors, Ginny Lurcock.

AUTHOR LINKS
WEBSITE/BLOG | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | GOODREADS 

 

Spotlight & Author Interview for Tongues of Angels

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Tongues of Angels by Julia Park Tracey

Book Description

A Catholic priest with questions. A penitent woman with a secret past. A jealous friend. The fourth in this lover’s knot? God.

Father Rob Souza faces the forbidden desire of his own heart when Jessica, victim of a brutal assault, comes for counseling. Rob’s best friend, Lawrence, is a priest with an artistic temperament and trials of his own. A Greek chorus of gossiping priests, and church politics riddled with suspicion and battling for souls, force Lawrence, Rob and Jessica to make choices they didn’t intend.

Tongues of Angels offers a peek behind the curtain of the priesthood, offering a funny, poignant look at Catholic angst and ambiguity. Based on a true story, Tongues of Angels is a canny, warm and surprisingly spiritual novel for our time. Now back in print for the 10th Anniversary Edition, through Indie-Visible Ink.

“Julia Park Tracey brings wicked honesty and scathingly hot nuance to this soulful novel; with crackling prose, she seduces readers. Tongues of Angels is both sexy and spiritual.” —Jordan Rosenfeld, author of Forged in Grace

Read the Prologue from Tongues of Angels

On feast days he wore red, the blood red of virgin martyrs and cardinals. His brocade chasuble, a heavy mantle that draped him from his collar to his shoes, was piped with gold, curved at the hem, with a slit for his head. When he walked he seemed to glide, and when he held his hands out to consecrate the Eucharist, the chasuble shifted to reveal his arms, cloaked in white from the linen alb he wore underneath, exposing the narrow cuffs of his black clerical shirt beneath the alb, layer under layer that ended at the naked brown skin of his hands.

Father Robert Souza was a Roman Catholic priest, under the chasuble and alb, and clerical collar (size Pontiff 3) and the black shirt and slacks that are the uniform of the priest.

And under that, boxer shorts.

And under those, the man.

Rob had deliberated over the boxers. For years he had worn bleached white shorts that his mother had ironed, yes, ironed with a heavy hand and an ancient iron that she ran over paraffin for a crisp sheen. When he was old enough to buy his own shorts, he switched to tight, bright bikini briefs, which had amused his fellow seminarians and given him adolescent moments in front of the mirror, admiring his physique, a blue-collar Portuguese boy in Speedos, building muscles to lift a chalice. His former girlfriend had once given him some black silk boxers which he still kept but never wore; after ordination, Rob bought white briefs that somehow conferred respectability with their simple, practical function, and suited his position in the parish.

Then once, when Rob visited with some parishioners who suffered infertility problems, the husband explained how briefs lowered his sperm count and how, that for healthy sperm, a man should wear looser shorts. Rob worked through the issue as if it were a syllogism, a geometric proof: If tight shorts lower the sperm count, and lower sperm count can affect fertility, then men should wear loose shorts to ensure fertility. But when he added the x factor of celibate priesthood into the equation, he faltered. He didn’t need a sperm count, high or low. Rob stood before the underwear kiosk in a department store on his day off, anonymous and average in his jeans and chambray shirt, and weighed his decision.

When a man has a vocation to the priesthood, he must meet certain qualifications to be ordained: be at least twenty-four years old, a legitimate child, and of sound mind and body, although the Bishop could dispense most impediments. Rob himself had received a dispensation from the Bishop because he had been a few months shy of his twenty-fourth birthday at his ordination six years before, and one of Rob’s classmates received a dispensation because of an undescended testicle. St. Thomas Aquinas had preached, long before the invention of the microscope, that each drop of a man’s seed was like a tiny man, thus sacred, and despite more modern medical understanding, the Catholic doctrine was the same. Although a priest must never put his gift to use, the living seed must be cherished. Rob, sound of mind and body, poised to choose between the guilty freedom of boxer shorts versus the ball-crushing, sperm-killing snap of tight elastic, was glad to have worked it out.

He had worn boxers ever since.

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Interview with Julia Park Tracey

How did you come up with the title?

Tongues of Angels is from a beautiful, beloved quote from the Bible that says, “If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.” It says that no matter how beautifully I speak, if I don’t have love in my life or in my heart, I am just making noise. This quote sums up the theme of the novel, in essence: These priests are just going through the motions and cannot be truly spiritual (e.g. they are just making noise) if they don’t have love in their hearts or in their lives. “Love” could also mean being content or spiritually satisfied – but in many cases, even companionship is denied. So the church is being led by people without love in their hearts. It is only noise.

Can you tell us about your main character?

Rob Souza is a young American Catholic priest who has been in the job for six years and suddenly finds himself questioning his  calling. He wants to be a priest, but more and more, he feels like something is missing. It’s his crisis, not of faith, but in the institution of celibacy for priests. He’s lonely, and wishes he could have companionship, a wife, kids. And since this is utterly against everything he’s ever known, it’s a terrible ache and a dangerous place for him to linger. Church politics and gossip are his worst enemies – or is he his own worst enemy?

Why did you choose to write this particular book?

My ex-husband was a Catholic priest before we married; he chose to leave the church, and over 15 years, we frequently had his friends over for dinner, BBQ and parties. They talked about their daily lives as priests: their worries, woes, triumphs, intense schedules, and so much gossip. I wanted to capture the flavor of that, and I did so in several scenes. I also wanted to tell the story of how a heterosexual priest has to choose marriage or the church. For the gay priests, this issue just didn’t seem as difficult, in my experience.

How did you develop your plot and characters?

I truly began with simple dialogue. Suddenly all these priests were speaking in my head and I had to let them talk. The things they said were the catty, vicious, naughty, hilarious, innuendo-laden gossip that I heard at my own dining room table. So sassy! Each priest in Tongues of Angels is based on several real priests I know (so are the nuns). They are more archetypal in the novel, but if you know a lot of priests, you probably know one of these guys.

What was the hardest part about writing this book?

I didn’t want it to be The Thorn Birds, which is just deliciously gratuitous priest-sex. I wanted to show spiritual longing, and how close to sexual longing it can be. Desire for oneness with G*d, for example, can be as deeply affecting as falling in love with someone. We’re discouraged from thinking of sex and spirituality together – it’s “sinful”! But Carl Jung said he’d never seen a sexual problem that was not also a religious problem, and vice versa. Those spiritual/sexual/ecstatic impulses come from the same part of the brain. So it’s no wonder they collide. And, oh, what calamity ensues!

What genre are you most comfortable writing?

I do best in literary fiction vs. genre fiction. I am originally a poet, and I can’t help but think poetically. However, I’m also a journalist by trade, so I’m able to write nonfiction comprehensibly and easily; that’s where I’ve won all my awards. Creative nonfic is probably the best place for me, but I have these stories to tell. So I wander and dabble.

What inspired you to write your first book? My first novel (under the bed somewhere) is a thriller inspired by a newspaper photograph of a runaway girl. I wanted to tell her story. I spent 4 years telling it. I couldn’t get her sad face out of my mind. But also – someone at my 5-year high school reunion said, “Oh, I’ll bet before we see her again, she’ll write a book.” I felt challenged by that – and before the 10th reunion, I had.

Have you ever had writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?

I went to a writer’s conference as a young poet, feeling nervous and insecure, and an established poet was condescending and insulting to me. Instead of realizing he was a sexist jerk, I took his words to heart and believed that I was wasting my time. I didn’t write for about three years after that. He broke my heart. But I believed him instead of believing in myself. That’s really the key. You have to put on your writing self as you put on a cloak – it is all yours, and no one can take it off of you without your permission. I slowly learned to wear my cloak again. And it’s all mine. I will wear this til death!

What is your favorite quote, by whom, and why?

Ernest Hemingway says in A Moveable Feast to write one true thing every day. He doesn’t mean in your journal. He means to write one beautifully, emotionally true thing. If that is describing the color of the sunrise under a birds wings, or what your morning coffee tastes like, that’s as true as writing anything else. Your Facebook status can be your one true thing – if it’s honest and heartfelt.

Did you learn anything from writing this book and what was it?

I really learned about structuring a novel, about creating resonance, about revision. I was in my graduate fiction workshops at the time and they were a tough crowd, believe me. Sharpened knives. I also took it to writing conferences, and there were sharp knives there, too. I learned to have a tougher skin from those sessions, but also how to kill my darlings. I killed off three beloved characters for the final draft. That’s about half the volume. That was hard – but necessary. You see only palimpsests of these characters in the final story.

Why did you choose to write this particular book?

I originally began it as a way to tell my then-husband’s priest story – it was called “A Priest’s Tale.” But reality was very different from where the story wanted to go. I went with the story instead of the documentary-style tell-all. One of my poetry professors told me, “Don’t let the truth get in the way of a good poem,” and the same is true of a story. I had to leave “the real story” behind very early on in order to make beloved characters and believable plot and action. So it’s based, somewhat, in truth, but it is by no means a true story.

How much of the book is realistic?

The gossiping priests; the post-traumatic stress of Jessica, the scarlet woman; the stress that the priests live with during various church seasons like Christmas or Easter; misogyny in much of the priesthood; scenes from the seminary; the clash of reforming liturgy vs. classical liturgy; and the Catholic and Christian theology – I read so much theology and canon law when writing this. You can bet it’s solid.

Have you included a lot of your life experiences, even friends, in the plot?

I could name names. It’s best that I don’t. These people gave me their stories but prefer to remain anonymous.

Do you have any advice for writers?

I’m not one of those who says, “Write for 30 minutes every day,” or other such advice. I prefer Hemingway’s “one true thing” – just try to write that, every day, and you’ll make progress. I find that when I get stuck, I do well to write three Morning Pages (from Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way) and that usually gets me back on track. I don’t get blocked. Sometimes I just don’t feel like writing. And that’s cool. Walking, gardening, knitting, kneading bread, taking a bath or shower – these are other ways to percolate the juice. If you get stuck, go do one of those. Another trick I use is to type my handwritten notes (after an interview or research). That kick-starts the engine as well.

How long have you been writing?

I have been writing since I could write with a pencil – about third grade, when I started writing poems, and fourth grade, when I started writing books in pads of paper; in ninth grade I really started writing poetry, and took high school newspaper, which catapulted me into college newspaper and freelance writing. I was paid for my first magazine article when I was 19. I have been writing professionally for 30 years.

When did you first know you could be a writer?

I knew I could be a journalist from high school – but I differentiated “work” writing from “real” writing for many years. Journalism (newspaper, magazines, editing, blogging) paid the bills but felt like cheating because I was then too tired to write a poem. I felt like I was only really writing when I could get a draft of a poem down. In my 40s, I made peace with both sides of the heart and became better at both kinds of writing. My journalism became easier and more poetic; my poetry eased into everyday life. Writing is writing. It doesn’t have to live in hierarchy.

Can you share a little of your current work with us?

My great-aunt Doris passed away two years ago and left me her diaries from the 1920s. I fell in love with her writing style and have been publishing her diaries on Facebook and Twitter, a few lines at a time. (Visit Facebook/TheDorisDiaries or Twitter @TheDorisDiaries). Last fall the first volume was published by IV Ink; I’ve Got Some Lovin’ to Do: The Diaries of a Roaring Twenties Teen (1925-1926), which contains these boy-crazy, hair-raising flapper stories from an eyewitness to the times. The second volume is due out this fall, and it’s called Reaching for the Moon: More Diaries of a Roaring Twenties Teen (1927-1929). You can read more about this project at www.thedorisdiaries.com. (Both of those are edited and annotated by me.)

Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?

I have not traveled with Tongues of Angels, but I travel a lot for The Doris Diaries. In March, I went to several high schools, girls’ clubs, women’s clubs and libraries to speak about Doris for Women’s History Month. Last fall I traveled 4,000 miles by train to speak in libraries, bookstores and in speakeasies from Portland, Oregon, to Albuquerque. I was in Portland again in March, and will be on the road again with Volume Two of the Doris Diaries in September. I hope to hit the East Coast this year.

Who is your publisher?

My publisher is Indie-Visible Ink, an excellent consortium of women who work together to produce and promote works of literary fiction, fantasy, YA, mystery, essays, and creative nonfiction (www.indie-visible.com). These women are strong, smart and sassy. I couldn’t do it without them. Look for them on GoodReads, Smashwords, and Amazon.

What contributes to making a writer successful?

The work is never done. I will never stop writing til I drop dead because there is always more to write. If you want to be a professional writer – leave your job and do this fulltime – you have to be prepared to work nonstop, at blogging, freelance, promoting, marketing, reviewing, teaching, sharing, volunteering, and so on. Freelance work is a sales job – you have to keep it flowing so that the next check comes in six months. Writing books is the same thing. They don’t write themselves, and they don’t promote themselves, either. Someone has to write those tweets, and someone has to check all the various media sites, and Google alerts, and email, and so on. That someone is you. Either you’ll be a success or you won’t — because either you’ll do the work or you won’t.

About the Author

ForJulia8

Julia Park Tracey is an award-winning writer, editor, and activist. Her women’s history project, The Doris Diaries (www.thedorisdiaries.com), is a series of early 20th century diaries penned by her great aunt; they include I’ve Got Some Lovin’ to Do: The Diaries of a Roaring Twenties Teen (1925-1926) and Reaching for the Moon: More Diaries of a Roaring Twenties Teen (1927-1929), both through Indie-Visible Ink. She lives in Northern California.

Follow Julia at http://www.juliaparktracey.com

 

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Blog Tour Grand Finale & Giveaway for In Shadows of Magic

Did you miss any of this tour?  See it all at-a-glance and catch up on anything you missed!! Plus… enter to WIN every day!  It’s the GRAND FINALE!!!
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In Shadows of Magic

by Alison F Prince

Published July 11, 2013 by Astraea Press

Mandy McKinney lives the charmed life. She is beautiful, athletic, popular, dating the hottest jock in school, and certainly doesn’t have any time for her loser twin sister. But Mandy also has a secret. When the truth is unveiled, her world is twisted upside down, and her very life is at stake.

Mandy’s twin sister, Brianna, has never had any success in the dating department. When Brianna finally meets the guy of her dreams, it turns out that he has secrets of his own. Dangerous secrets. Just her luck.

The twins are about to be swept away into a world of beauty and power beyond their wildest imaginations where nothing is what is seems, danger is lurking in the shadows, and their only chance of survival is finding themselves, and each other, once again.

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Alison F. Prince lives in Hoboken, NJ where she works as a school psychologist (M.A. Marist College), author, and jeweler. She is the author of In Shadows of Magic, a new YA novel out from Astraea Press (2013). 

In Shadows of Magic Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/InShadowsofMagic
The Bea-YOU-tiful Tour
7-8 Multi-blog LAUNCH – Breaking News!!
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9 –  Mortal Moments  – Set Goals, Work Hard & Be Proud of Your Accomplishments
10 – All That’s Written – Don’t Let Others Bring You Downplus… an Interview!

“My original title was “Imbalance of Power” which I loved…”

11 – Rose & Beps – Develop Your Own Style


– Intriguing Reads – Date Who You Want 

12- Mel’s Shelves – Admit to Your Mistakes

          Moon Shine Art Spot – Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

13 – Kindle and Me – Review

I love that the girls figure out that magic doesn’t necessarily make life any better. You don’t know if people like you because of magic or for who you are.
 
15 –
Mythical Books – Choose True Friends 


16 – One a Day YA – Be Brave

17 – Sun Mountain Reviews – Have Your Own Interests

 
Twenty-Something Year Old Girl  – Review

I think the title is a great pick for this book.  Magic is the reason all these problems began, and magic could possibly be what saves them all.

19 –
Tiffyfit’s Reading Corner – Review

This book was a fun, quick read that sets the stage for future novels exploring more of Supertopia, vampires, shifters, etc. Oh, and that last line? Oooooooh.

20 –
Tressa’s Wishful Endings – Be a Genuine Friend



21 – Grand
Finale

Tour-Wide Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card from Alison

10 eCopies of In Shadows of Magic by Alison F Prince from Astaea Press.

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Character Spotlight & Giveaway for Discovery

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Discovery by Jennifer Collins

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Book Description

Fans of Twilight will be immediately drawn into Discovery, a gothic, young adult urban fantasy. This supernatural coming-of-age romance deals with themes of equality for all and staying true to yourself. It’s a dramatic tale of transformation, magic and forbidden love. First in the Altera Realm trilogy, Discovery follows compelling characters Syney and Hunter in a war between races as they fight for equality. The young adult supernatural genre has fast claimed the hearts of readers everywhere and Discovery will too. High school and college aged readers as well as adults will be enthralled by this fantastic journey. Each book in the Altera Realm trilogy takes place over the course of a tightly-packed year in the life of Syney Andrews and leads seamlessly into the next, culminating in a gripping climax.

Meet Syney Andrews. Syney’s life is ordinary until a chance encounter with a carnival psychic informs her that she will be embarking on a great adventure surrounding her real parents. Syney hasn’t given herself the luxury of thinking about her so-called family that abandoned her. All she’s got left of them is an amulet, the only thing found on her as a baby. The amulet is more powerful than she knows. It breaks a spell that sent her over 100 years into the future in the Human Realm.

The Altera Realm has been at war for well over a century. Altera is connected to the Human Realm by a portal and no human knows it exists. It is home to the five old and great races. There are the Magic Users, Lycins, Vampires, Daemons, and Shifters. Each race is an entity of their own with it’s own life purpose, rulers and guarded secrets. Syney is a new face in Altera Realm who’s about to shake everything up. She’s a human-raised, 18-year-old who is about to challenge everything about the old laws and traditions. The Realm will never be the same again.

An old prophecy tells that peace can only be accomplished through the gracious Vilori Queen. What will happen when Syney Andrews is thrust into that role? After all, she’s human-raised! No one is prepared for the consequences. Things are only going to get harder for Syney, who is feeling a strong attraction to Hunter, from a banished family—and another race. Who can Syney trust, if anyone? Will she go against the law forbidding interracial marriage? Or will she fight to the death for her love, Hunter? Readers will be on the edge of their seats as they find out.

 GoodReads Link: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17936892-discovery?ac=1

Character Spotlight: Hunter 

Age: 120

Race: Lycin

Position: Royal Protector

Allies: Syney, Leaf

Enemies: Mellisandrianna

Being named the Lost Vilori’s Protector is a surprise to everyone, including Hunter, who was never even formally trained as a Royal Guard.  That’s not to say he wasn’t happy or ready to take his place in the Palace.  His growing feelings for Syney, however, may put a dent in his plans for the future.

Here are three things you should know about Hunter.

1. He’s not entirely comfortable in the Palace. According to Village laws, banished Lycin families aren’t eligible for Royal Guard service, and since his family is, Hunter was never legally allowed to train as a Guard.  He was raised in a Wall Town, the farthest from the Palace, which led to a distrust of most Magic Users.

2. He takes his job very seriously. Hunter knows being a Royal Protector is a gift and doesn’t want to do anything that would jeopardize it.  This comes in competition with Syney’s annoying ability to go against the queen and most Palace rules.

3. Opposites attract.  Syney is the farthest from Hunter’s ideal woman.  She’s loud when he is silent.  He is guarded while she is open to so many new people.  It’s amazing how they overcome all of their differences to find love with each other, which is against the law.

 

About the Author

Discovery, part of the Altera Realm trilogy is Jennifer Collins’s first foray into the world of gothic young adult fantasy fiction.  She holds a BA in English with concentration in Creative Writing from Montclair State University and completed a certification program at Kean University for teacher of English K-12 in New Jersey. She enjoys being a high school English teacher at the Plainfield Academy of Arts and Advanced Studies, a public performing arts middle school and high school in the urban inner-city school district of Plainfield, New Jersey. She currently lives in Colonia, New Jersey, with her husband, Robert, and her handsome cat, Dr. Daniel Jackson.
 

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Spotlight & Giveaway for Aberrant

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Aberrant (Aberrant Series Book One)  by Ruth Silver

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Book Description

In the future dystopian society of Cabal, the government instills equality for all and offers its citizens the perfect system. There is food, shelter and jobs for everyone. The one requirement is to follow the rules without question, including the government’s match in marriage and “The Day of the Chosen”, a lottery that randomly selects families to conceive children as natural means hasn’t existed in generations. Following her eighteenth birthday, Olivia Parker accepts her requirement to marry her childhood best friend, Joshua Warren, and is eager to start her work assignment and new life when it all comes abruptly to an end as she’s arrested and thrown in prison. The only crime committed, her existence.

Olivia is unlike the rest of the world born not from “The Day of the Chosen.” The truth haunts the government and puts her life in grave danger as one simple fact would destroy the perfect system. With Joshua’s help, Olivia breaks free of prison and is forced on the run. Together they set out to find the promised rebel town in search of a new home and new life together. Their situation seems less than promising as they reach the town of Haven. New rules and customs must be adhered to in order to stay. Leaving would mean most certain death in the large expanse of the Gravelands. Time is running out as the government mounts an attack to destroy Olivia and bury her secret with her. Thrown into a world unlike their own, they must quickly adapt to survive. 

About the Author

RuthRuth Silver is the best-selling author of Aberrant. The Young Adult/New Adult Romantic Dystopian Adventure, Aberrant is the first in a trilogy, released April 17th, 2013. Silver first began writing poetry as a teenager and reading heaps of fan fiction in her free time. She attended Northern Illinois University in 2001 and graduated with a Bachelor’s in Communication. While in college she spent much of her free time writing with friends she met online and penning her first novel, Deuces are Wild, which she self-published in 2004. Her favorite class was Creative Writing senior year where she often handed in assignments longer than the professor required because she loved to write and always wanted to finish her stories. Her love of writing, led her on an adventure in 2007 to Melbourne, Australia. Silver enjoys reading YA/NA novels and sharing her favorite books with other readers. She also enjoys photography, traveling and of most of all writing.

Author Links

Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads / Amazon / Website

Purchase Links

AMAZON / BARNES & NOBLE / BOOK DEPOSITORY

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Spotlight, Author Guest Post & Giveaway for Come Hell or High Desire

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Come Hell or High Desire by Misty Dietz

Come Hell or High Desire

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Publication Date: August 12, 2013

Published by Entangled Publishing – Suspense Imprint

Book Description

Torn between dangerous desires…

Framed for a series of brutal murders, rebel-turned-CEO Zack Goldman must go to ground. When he discovers that sexy boutique owner Sloane Swift has a shocking gift—terrifying visions that connect her to his mentor’s missing daughter—he can’t believe her refusal to help him. Nor can he believe he’s actually falling for the frustrating woman.

Their chemistry will either find its perfect equation…

Helping an accused killer ranks low on Sloane’s to-do list, no matter how hot the attraction burns between them. But putting to rest her overwhelming guilt over the missing girl’s fate proves more difficult than she ever imagined…that is, until her heart and conscience begin to align.

…or detonate everything in its path.

As the real killer locks in on Sloane, Zack will stop at nothing to keep her safe. And as they earn each other’s trust—with danger in hot pursuit—they may just lose their hearts in the process…

 

About the Author

Misty Dietz

Misty’s love affair with words started in middle school when she penned dark stories set in exotic locales she knew nothing about. In college, her boy-angst spilled over into disturbing reams of poetry. After grad school, real life hit, and the writing went into hibernation until she found her own happily-ever-after with an ultra linear man who is the long-suffering counter-balance to her zig-zagging tendencies. Now, she spends her days writing emotionally complex, adrenaline-fueled stories, teaching Zumba, and praying her children don’t come home with math homework.
Author Links

Purchase Links for Come Hell or High Desire on Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo Books

Why Book Covers are Like Dating
By Misty Dietz

 A big thank you to Barbara Ann for having me on Sun Mountain Reviews today! Love the blog name! Even though I’m from the flatlands of eastern North Dakota, I’ve spent time in the mountains because my parents live in the foothills of the Rockies. Super fun to explore…like shopping for books!

We’ve all heard it before…don’t judge a book by it’s cover, yada, yada. And we know we shouldn’t, but we do…all the time. It’s human nature. So of course, authors are very concerned about the window dressing of their stories. Because let’s face it, sometimes that’s all readers have to go on when they’re faced with twenty other covers. It’s like that initial attraction when you’re dating.

Say you’re on Amazon or Barnes and Noble and you see that hot cover that gives you chills. Is it looking at me, you think, does it want me? LOL. But for real, if you’re in a room full of men or on a website full of books, which ones are you going to select to move to the next phase of “dating”?

The ones that physically appeal to you. This is a subjective thing, but in books it is the right blend of colors, images, typography, and mood that release feel-good chemicals and inspire your curiosity. Enough so that you’re intrigued to move to the next phase, which is usually reading the book blurb, or back cover copy.

Sure, people (and books) can come to be more attractive the longer we get to know them, but first impressions definitely count—and it’s usually a gut-level, split second decision.

So, needless to say, authors are very concerned about the end result.

Fiona Jayde is the graphics goddess who did the cover of COME HELL OR HIGH DESIRE, and that sexy beast on the cover is totally Zack!! When I saw that man’s image while surfing the graphics website Entangled uses for their cover art, my heart practically stopped. I couldn’t believe there would be a model who would so much match up with the character I envisioned, yet there he flippin’ was. Entangled is so awesome for so many reasons, but the creative input they offer their authors is particularly fabulous.

In addition to Zack’s image, I suggested they use either a river background or something grungy and industrial to reflect where a lot of the action goes down in the book. Fiona went with the industrial theme, and I think the end result is THE BOMB. 🙂

So what do you think? Are you strongly influenced by a book’s cover? What’s one of your favorite covers?

At the end of my blog tour we’ll be drawing the name of two commenters from all of the blogs to gift not one, but two fantastic prize winners. See below for details, and thanks for being here! xo, misty 😉

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Review of Home to Whiskey Creek (Whiskey Creek #4)

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Home to Whiskey Creek (Whiskey Creek #4) by Brenda Novak

Book Description

Sometimes home is the refuge you need—and sometimes it isn’t

Adelaide Davies, who’s been living in Sacramento, returns to Whiskey Creek, the place she once called home. She’s there to take care of her aging grandmother and to help with Gran’s restaurant, Just Like Mom’s. But Adelaide isn’t happy to be back. There are too many people here she’d rather avoid, people who were involved in that terrible June night fifteen years ago.

Ever since the graduation party that changed her life, she’s wanted to go to the police and make sure the boys responsible—men now—are punished. But she can’t, not without revealing an even darker secret. So it’s better to pretend….

Noah Rackham, popular, attractive, successful, is shocked when Adelaide won’t have anything to do with him. He has no idea that his very presence reminds her of something she’d rather forget. He only knows that he’s finally met a woman he could love.

Book Review

Brenda Novak has been on my list of authors to read for quite a while, and I appreciated the opportunity to review one of her books so I could get an idea of her writing style and her approach to romance. Whiskey Creek is the fourth book in this series and although it can stand alone, I think I would have enjoyed it more if I had started at the beginning so I could have connected with other characters mentioned in the story who have probably been featured in previous books.

Whiskey Creek centers on the love story of Adelaide (Addy) Davies and Noah Rackham.  I would categorize this book as a contemporary romance with some mystery and a tiny bit of suspense as the full story about Adelaide’s brutal experience fifteen years ago is revealed and well as the repercussions that will follow if the truth comes out.

Novak delves into some sensitive, stirring issues that may be controversial or uncomfortable for some readers. She explores the multitude of emotions Addie experiences after her attack and the lingering effects it still has on her life, especially when she returns to Whiskey Creek to care for her ailing grandmother. Since Whiskey Creek is such a small town, she cannot help but run into the boys who hurt her long ago, and her reactions to seeing them again show her strength and courage that, at times, was surprising and admirable.  Throughout the book, I couldn’t help but wonder how I would react in her situation.

I like that Novak also takes the time to explore the mindset of the boys who were involved in the event and their reflections on their behavior now that they are grown men with their own families.  Getting the men’s perspectives brings up whether one evil act should define you for the rest of your life? Do they deserve redemption?

The first scene has a great hook that grabbed my attention and immediately pulled me into the story when Noah finds Addie who has been beaten and is trapped into an old, abandoned  mine. Addy is surprised and worried when she discovers Noah is the twin brother of Cody, one of the boys who participated in her cruel assault.  Noah becomes suspicious of Addy’s fabricated story about her abduction when she refuses to go to the hospital and talk to the police, but now that she and her grandmother’s lives have been threatened, Addy is determined to keep her past hidden, even though she may never find a sense of peace and resolution.

Although Addy has been attracted to Noah since high school, she does her best to avoid him when he tries to get to know her. Even though she used to dream about having a relationship with Noah, she knows that being with him will only make the situation worse. Getting attached to him will make it more difficult for her to keep quiet yet exposing this nightmare will devastate him and his family. Addy also has another secret that no one knows about and she can’t bear to think of the pain she will cause Noah if he learns the truth.

As Noah gets to know and care about Addy, he begins his own search to find out what she’s hiding from him.  While he pursues a relationship with Addy, he must also deal with his best friend, Baxter’s, secret and its potential to end a long, close friendship. At first I didn’t see the relevance of this story thread but now I think it foreshadows his decisions when his family and some of the citizens in Whiskey Creek impugn Addy’s reputation.  However, I still  think the story could be just as strong without including this complication.

For me, Addy and Noah’s romance budding romance was lukewarm. They are really strangers to each other and both have issues with intimacy and commitment. This may be a big factor in why I just didn’t feel they had a strong chemistry. At first, I wasn’t sure I liked Noah; he’s a playboy and sees Addy as a challenge when she doesn’t fall at his fit as other women do.  I also couldn’t believe the depth of Addy’s feelings for Noah over the years. Yes, it’s clear she has always had a crush on him, but in reality Noah barely remembers her. I found it hard to believe that he has always been the love of her life.

Novak includes the ongoing story threads of other characters who have been or probably will be featured in the series, but as someone who hasn’t read the other books, I was overwhelmed by trying to remember the characters and their connections to one another. Eventually, I just glossed over these sections and kept my focus on Noah and Addy.

The plot is somewhat predictable although Novak does throw in some red herrings to keep you guessing about the identity of the man threatening  Addy.  What really made this story worthwhile is the rich character development and Addy and Noah’s  growth as they face unresolved issues that have kept them from moving forward.

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review

Rating

3 Suns

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About the Author

Brenda Novak

It was a shocking experience that jump-started Brenda Novak’s bestselling author career.

“I caught my day-care provider drugging my children with cough syrup and Tylenol to get them to sleep while I was away,” Brenda says. “It was then that I decided that I needed to do something from home.”

However, writing was the last profession she expected to undertake. In fact, Brenda swears she didn’t have a creative bone in her body. In school, math and science were her best subjects, and when it came time to pick a major in college, she chose business.

Abandoning her academic scholarship to Brigham Young University at the age of 20 in order to get married and start a family, Brenda dabbled in commercial real estate, then became a loan officer.

“When I first got the idea to become a novelist, it took me five years to teach myself the craft and finish my first book,” Brenda admits. “I learned how to write by reading what others have written. The best advice for any would-be author: read, read, read….”

Brenda sold her first book, and the rest is history. Many of her novels have won or placed in contests such as the National Reader’s Choice, the Bookseller’s Best, the Write Touch, the Award of Excellence and the Beacon Award for Published Authors.

Brenda and her husband, Ted, live in Sacramento and are the proud parents of five children—three girls and two boys. She juggles her writing career with her children’s softball and soccer games, field trips, carpool runs and homework sessions.

When she’s not spending time with her family or writing, Brenda is usually working on her annual fundraiser for diabetes research—an on-line auction held at her website May 1st – May 31st. Her youngest son, Thad, has diabetes, and Brenda is determined to help him and others like him. She also enjoys traveling, watching sporting events and biking–she rides an amazing 20 miles every day!  (From Goodreads Profile)

Author Links

Websitehttp://www.brendanovak.com

Twitter:Brenda_Novak

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BrendaNovakAuthor

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Spotlight & Giveaway for Lines of Space

Devinder Kumar Dhiman was born in 1965 in a small town near Chandigarh, in a middle class family. He completed his engineering graduation from the prestigious Marine Engineering and Research Institute in Kolkata. After graduation, he worked as an engineer on ship and also taught science and mathematics to XIIth standard students in a Coaching institute, in between the sailings. In 1997, he got his First Class Engineering Officer license from Directorate General of Shipping of India. After two years, he became head of the technical department of a Norwegian ship plying in international waters and continues to hold this position till date. He works on ship for about six months every year and devotes the remaining time to his interest of physics. He lives with his family in Panchkula- a beautiful town of north India.

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Genre: General Science17823246

Publisher: CreateSpace

Release Date: June 4, 2013

Amazon

Book Description:

‘Lines of Space’ is a unique and interesting approach to creation of matter from empty space. The Author has presented this notion by primarily discussing the established theories of physics in an interactive dialogue with his son in order to simplify them and then comparing them with the new idea of ‘Lines of Space’. The author conjectured that, in the beginning of the Universe, there was dense uniform space which converted into matter by contraction and caused different stresses in the remaining space, which in turn gave rise to fundamental forces. The author developed mathematical formula to find this stress at various locations in the universe and established its relation with cause of Gravitation,bending of Light, expansion of the Universe, Theory of Relativity and creation of subatomic particles. Thus, he has presented in this book, an absolutely new, ground-breaking, plausible and fascinating look in to the world of physics where all matter in the universe is created from space itself and the fundamental forces subsist due to stress in the ‘Lines of Space’.

Excerpt

Space is uniform throughout the universe and all the physical laws and scientific experiments, formulae and theories are based on the assumption that space is uniform. Then another thought struck me, what if space is not uniform, will it then be possible for space to convert into small matter particles on its own due to some natural environmental changes? This answer seemed very unlikely; I did not know what difference a non-uniform space would make. Neither had I any idea how a non-uniform space would look like nor how it would be different from uniform space. May be there would not be any difference, but I wanted to try to find it. So I started on the long and arduous journey of finding the truth about universe.

First, I searched on the internet and I couldn’t find any information on the non-uniformity of space. It seemed as though I was on the wrong track because it is a well-established hypothesis that space is uniform and it appeared that I was just trying to make something out of nothing. But I couldn’t let this idea go as I meditated deeper into it. I had to proceed on this path alone, as no information was available to me. After countless hours of cogitating, I could only envisage that space is homogenous and uniform and that there is no chance that anything could have appeared from space even if it is not uniform throughout the universe.

One fine day, I was wandering about such fascinations lost in my contemplations when my wife handed me a steel bowl filled with milk-cream, thrust a spoon in the bowl, and directed me to keep turning the spoon in the bowl.

“What’s this?” I asked.

“Just keep turning,” she commanded and went to check the washing machine, which was sounding the alarm that the washing cycle is completed and that somebody should come and attend to it.

I followed orders and kept turning the spoon in the milk-cream, which looked homogeneous, and churning it was a futile exercise as far as I was concerned.

After few minutes, I saw some small lumps had started forming in the milk-cream. I continued churning. The lumps started becoming bigger and bigger and I was excited when I saw that the nearly homogeneous milk-cream had separated into two parts: ‘solid’ and ‘liquid’.

“Have you got the butter?” enquired my wife, as she came into the room.

“Looks like it,” I said innocently, not knowing what result she wanted.

She took the bowl, checked it, handed it back to me, and instructed me to keep the bowl in the kitchen. It appeared to me that the mission had been accomplished; she had got what she wanted.

But I was ruminating that I never knew such a simple thing as this that nearly homogenous milk-cream could be converted into butter and butter milk just by churning it vigorously, or maybe I had sighted it but never cared about it. Now, this simple knowledge coincided with my ongoing pursuit of creation of the universe. If practically homogeneous milk-cream could be separated into two parts by simply providing energy to it by churning, why couldn’t the homogeneous space be separated into different parts when energy is supplied or removed from it? Yes, there is a chance that elementary particles, such as electrons or even smaller particles like bosons or quarks, could have been created from space only. There was probably no requirement for the Big Bang; we just needed to know the mechanism that converted space into particles. This conversion looked impossible to me, and the relation of a biological process, such as formation of butter, with the creation of universe did not seem acceptable. Then I supposed there was no harm in trying to investigate further, so I continued my discerning of non-uniform space and one day, I found a way to differentiate between two spaces. For this differentiation, I was required to consider that space contains some medium. I knew that scientists had first assumed the existence of a medium of space when it was thought that light waves required some medium for travelling. Later that theory of medium of space was discarded due to practical observations from the Michelson and Morley experiment. But I opined further that that experiment had only proved that there is no medium of space that changes due to the motion of the earth, but it did not prove that there couldn’t be any other medium that remains unaffected by the motion of earth. So, there is a chance that the medium of space exists.

I had already made two key deviations from the set theories: firstly, that space is non-uniform; and secondly, that it consists of some medium. Let’s see where these deviations can lead us to.

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