Book Blast & Giveaway for The Fallen Siren Series by S.J. Harper

S.J. Harper has recently released Reckoning, the second book in The Fallen Siren series. Based on my experience reading, Cursed, the first full-length novel in this paranormal romance series, I can say it’s one I’d recommend to fans who enjoy plots with supernatural characters. The heroine of the story, Emma, is a siren, which isn’t a common character type in the paranormal fiction I’ve read, and this is what originally drew me to this series, and the characters and plot did not disappoint! You can learn more about all the books in the series below, read an excerpt from from the latest release, and enter a fantastic tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win a Kindle Fire!

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Genres: Urban Fantasy / Paranormal Romance

Captured (Fallen Siren Prequel #0.5)

RTCaptured1400X2100Join FBI Agents Emma Monroe and Zack Armstrong.

She’s a Siren. He’s a Werewolf.

Their mission is redemption.

 Emma Monroe is a Fallen Siren, cursed by the gods and banished to Earth for her failure to prevent the kidnapping of Persephone. She’s had many names and many lives, but only one mission: redemption. Now she works for the FBI and is on temporary assignment in Charleston. Solving this next missing persons case could be the key to ending her ancient curse—unless the temptation that’s her new partner gets in the way.

 Zack Armstrong is a Werewolf. Tall, dark, and dangerous, he currently works for one of the bureau’s elite Child Abduction Rapid Deployment teams. In many respects the man is every bit as mysterious as his secret and perilous past. But there are two things he’s certain about, that he’s going to get his man and his woman.

 When Zack finds himself suddenly shy a partner and a third child goes missing in Charleston, Emma goes from consultant to CARD team member in the space of a few hours. The abductions of the first two boys ended in murder, an outcome that neither Zack nor Emma can abide. As they race against time to track down the kidnapper and rescue the latest victim, they find themselves fighting something just as treacherous—a growing attraction that can’t be ignored or dend.

 Released June 2014 / 139 pgs.

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Blog Tour: Review & Giveaway for The Howling Heart

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The Howling Heart by April Bostic

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Publisher: Eternal Press

Publication Date: August 1, 2013

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Paige Donovan is an ambitious college graduate who aspires to reach the top of the corporate ladder. She’s climbing fast when given the promotion of a lifetime at a prestigious fashion magazine in New York City. Her bright future comes to an unexpected halt after news of her father’s death. She inherits his old cabin in the Colorado Rockies, and just when she thinks her luck couldn’t get any worse, she has a car accident in the mountains and awakens in the small, remote community of Black River.

Soon, she’s engulfed in the mystical world of Varulv—wolves descended from 13th century Scandinavia and blessed by Norse gods with the ability to appear human. Paige is desperate to return home, but never expects to fall for her rescuer, Riley Gray, a charming young werewolf from England who offers her an alternate future with his pack.

Now, she must choose between the career she’s always wanted and the love she’s always dreamed.

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Blog Tour & Giveaway for Logan’s Acadian Wolves (Immortals of New Orleans #4)

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Logan’s Acadian Wolves (Immortals of New Orleans #4) by Kym Grosso

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Genre:  Erotic Paranormal Romance

Publisher:  Independent

Date of Publication:  September 15, 2013

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Book Blast & Giveaway for Cursed

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Cursed by S.J.Harper

Cursed

Book One in the Fallen Siren Series

Release Date: October 1, 2013

Book Description halfsize

Meet FBI Agents Emma Monroe and Zack Armstrong.

She’s cursed. He’s damned. Together, they make one hell of a team. Emma Monroe is a Siren, cursed by the gods and bound to earth to atone for an ancient failure. She’s had many names and many lives, but only one mission: redemption. Now that she works missing persons cases for the FBI, it could be just a rescue away. Unless her new partner leads her astray.

Special Agent Zack Armstrong just transferred into the San Diego Field Office. He’s a werewolf, doing his best to beat back the demons from his dark and dangerous past. As a former Black Ops sniper, he’s taken enough lives. Now he’s doing penance by saving them.

Emma and Zack’s very first case draws them deep into the realm of the paranormal and forces them to use their own supernatural abilities. But that leaves each of them vulnerable, and there are lines partners should not cross. As secrets are revealed and more women go missing, one thing becomes clear: as they race to save the victims, Emma and Zack risk losing themselves.

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

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Series Spotlight: Shadow Unit Series

Enslaved in Shadows (Shadow Unit #1)

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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

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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/

Blog Barrage & Giveaway for A Touch of Honor (The Honor Trilogy #1)

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A Touch of Honor (The Honor Trilogy #1) by J.P. Grider

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YA Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Fated Hearts Publishing
Release Date: March 13, 2013
Heat Level: Sweet
Length: 224 pages

Available at Amazon: 

A Touch of Honor (A Young Adult Paranormal Romance) (The Honor Trilogy)

Book Description

Honor hurts…all the time. The doctors say she’s fine – it’s all in her head. But Honor feels pain. What she doesn’t know is…it’s not her pain– it’s everyone else’s.

Seventeen year-old Honor Stevens is not an ordinary teenager. Sure, she looks like one on the outside…but on the inside, there’s a whole world of pain going on. Honor is an empath. That means she can feel other people’s pain – like that of the girl who is about to be raped in the woods, or the girl who is dying of cancer, or her mom…who is suffering a heart attack. What she doesn’t know is what Ethan Sutherland comes to town to tell her – she can save these people. But at what cost? For every life Honor saves, she knocks years off her own.

When Ethan comes looking for her, he isn’t counting on falling in love. Now that he has, he wishes he hadn’t told her about her abilities. Though he tries his best to talk her out of saving every soul, Ethan loses the battle – Honor’s too nice for her own good.

Then there’s the matter of Ethan’s estranged, morally corrupt half-brother, Storm – he loves Honor too. And because Honor is intrinsically empathic, she’s aware of Storm’s softer side and begins falling for him as well.

When the two brothers are forced to work together against a group of evil empaths who are after Honor, they need to put their differences aside and focus on saving the one girl they both love.

A Touch of Honor is a paranormal love story of a different kind. In a world gone mad with vampires and werewolves,A Touch of Honor tugs at the heartstrings with a girl out to heal the world…one person at a time.

About the Author

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J.P. Grider, born in Paterson, New Jersey as Julianne Pellegrino, was raised in Haledon, New Jersey, the oldest of six siblings. Her love of writing started early in her childhood, when she started writing poetry in-between homework assignments. As part of a school work program as a Journalism major in High School, J.P. Grider worked as a freelance reporter for a local newspaper, writing feature stories about exceptional high-school classmates. She studied Television Production and Film Writing at Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey, where she graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Communications.

Two of J.P. Grider’s novels have won awards in the Textnovel Writing Contest, with her recently published, Unplugged (A Portrait of a Rock Star) reaching Semi-finalist position. Though Unplugged is not her first novel written, it is the first to be published. Her second novel, Maybe This Life, published Summer 2012, was actually her first attempt at writing a novel. After completing the whole manuscript, Grider decided to scrap the whole thing and rewrite Maybe This Life from scratch. In Grider’s opinion, the difference between the two were night and day.

Currently, J.P. Grider is working on a Young Adult Paranormal love story and continues to work on stories in her main genre, Contemporary/Paranormal romance.

Connect with J.P. Grider
Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Amazon Author Page

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Enter the contest at each participating stop for a chance to win an eBook copy of “A Touch of Honor (The Honor Trilogy #1)” from J.P. Grider.

Contest is barrage-wide, open internationally ends Aug 15.

Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

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Follow the Tour Here: 

http://www.cblspromotions.com/2013/08/blogbarrage-touch-of-honor-honor.html

Book Trailer Release Day Blitz for London Undead Series


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London Undead Series by P.J. Schnyder

Watch the Book Trailer Now!

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About the Series

Award-winning author PJ Schnyder and Carina Press present a paranormal romance trilogy of zombie hunters, shape shifters, and survival. Love is hard…
The London Undead series: Bite Me (June 2013), Sing for the Dead (November 2013), and Survive to Dawn (March 2014)

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Book Description for Bite Me

Few people walk the streets of London since the zombie outbreak, but that’s not an issue for Seth. As a werewolf, he can handle himself and save humans reckless enough to take a nighttime stroll. While on patrol he comes across a group of people under attack. The one woman brave enough to take a stand against the zombies catches his eye—and not just because of her way with a gun. Learning the beautiful woman is homeless and fends for herself only intensifies his urge to protect and care for her.

Maisie can’t help but admit that she’s attracted to her werewolf rescuer. She’s drawn to Seth’s strength and ferocity, and finds herself opening up to him in ways she never imagined, even though she’s determined to not rely on Seth or anyone else. She doesn’t want another person to get hurt—or die—for her sake. She has enough scars, physical and emotional, from the last time…

But when Seth realizes something is drawing the zombies to Maisie, there may be nothing he can do to save her…

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About the Author

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Born and raised in the North East, PJ Schnyder spent her childhood pretending to study for the SATs by reading every fantasy and sci-fi novel she could borrow from the local and school libraries. She scored fairly high in the verbal portion.

She was introduced to the wonderful world of romance a decade later by her best friend at an anime convention in Seattle.

She now lives somewhere temperate watching the seasons go by with her two dogs and super stealthy ninja kitty, writing her stories and gaming.

 Author Links

Author’s website: http://pjschnyder.com/blog/home/

Author’s FB Page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorPJSchnyder

Author’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/pjschnyder

Author’s Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4174742.P_J_Schnyder

Author’s Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/pjschnyder/

Youtube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/pjschnyder

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Book Links

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17790346-bite-me

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/bite-me-pj-schnyder/1114971527?ean=9781426895654

Amazon: Bite Me (London Undead)

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Giveaway

Click on the Rafflecopter link below to enter the London Undead Giveaway for a chance to win

“Bite Me” themed items including a spiral-bound notebook, signed cover flat, signed bookmark, and a 1Gb USB flash drive pre-loaded with an e-copy of “Bite Me”

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

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To post a comment, please click on the green “Leave a Comment” link located at the bottom of this post after the tags.

Interview & Giveaway for Order of the Black Swan Set (Books 1-3) by Victoria Danann

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Victoria Dannan has expanded her Book Tour for Moonlight: The Big Bad Wolf  (Book 4 of the Order of The Black Swan series)

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To see the book promotion for the Order of the Black Swan, Books 1-3, complete with book trailers for each book, please click on my earlier post: Book Promotion: Order of the Black Swan

Learn more about Book 4 in the Order of the Black Swan series by clicking on my earlier post that includes an excerpt from the book along with my review: Spotlight and Review of Moonlight: The Big Bad Wolf

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Victoria Danann’s Self-Interview

Hey. If Rembrandt and Van Gogh can go self-portraits, I can do a self-interview. I know what you’re thinking. “Yeah. Well. You’re not Van Gogh.” You’re right, of course. But doing three blogs around the release of three books in the space of ten months has created the answers to a whole lot interview questions.

On occasion I interview other authors. I always ask if there was a question they always wanted to be asked and had never had been and, if so, what was it? That was part one of what led me here. The second part is character interviews. When I do character interviews – let’s face it – I’m interviewing my own imagination.

Soooooo, why not just ask myself the question I’d like to answer. The following is a sampling of some of my favorite all-time blog tour questions followed by one of the one questions I’ve never been asked, but would like to answer. (There are a lot.)

PART ONE: THE BOOKS

1. Do you feel that you can relate to one character in “this book” more than any other? And why?

No. I don’t relate to one more than another, but I love Rammel Hawking the most. And he knows it. He uses it  to his advantage to manipulate me all the time.

One person recently told me that, if action figures of my characters ever come out, she wants to place a preorder for Ram. I have to agree with her. Because this saga has a lot of balls in the air (pun not intended, I swear). Ram is on the zigzag path of a hero’s journey in a classical sense. Add to that the fact that he’s drop dead sex and a one-woman elf and, really, what more could you want?

2. Many people feel the PNR genre is on the way out. Do you agree? Are there any changes you’d make to stay on the cutting edge of this genre? Will you change genres?

I think that will be true if more authors don’t stop the vamp-by-number, more-weres-the-better rehash and try for something different.

Before I started writing I spent two full years reading every PNR that had enjoyed any success to find out what had already been done, then set out to create something new. I get a lot of feedback that starts by saying, “I                 don’t really know what genre to put this in…”  I love comments like, “She explodes stereotypes.”

Also, I’m writing true Paranormal Romance. It’s not paranormal suspense or paranormal mystery or paranormal  thriller with a love interest back story. The romance is the main plot for me. And romance is never going to be on  the way out.

3. As writers, we are bombarded with ideas every minute of every day. What’s the idea behind this series and   how did it come about?

I read Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein when I was about twelve-years-old and have always been  fascinated by the concept of other worlds that are similar, but not identical.  I combined that with my formal                 academic education in Paranormal Psychology, the fact that I always got along super well with boys, and voila.

PART TWO: WRITING

1. Do you write full time?

Snort.

2. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

If people “decide”, they’re not really writers. My working theory is that, if you watch children carefully, they will show you who they really are by the time they are eight or nine. At that age I had two stacks of legal pads on my bed. One I used to sketch glamorous evening wear. The other I used to write my own Bobbsey Twins novels. I did spend a few years as a designer of glam dresses and was copied by the biggest names in the business. I had a big following in the Northeast, South America, and Europe and still see some of my dresses show up in the movies. So I checked that off the list and did it until I was done. Now I’m writing.

3. Have you ever made big changes in your story because someone – your crit partner, a friend, or beta reader – really didn’t like it?  Are you glad you did (or didn’t)?

The answer is yes, but the someone was one of the characters. My Familiar Stranger started out to be a different story. My heroine was supposed to end up with the character of my choice. I was about 80% finished when another one of the guys (characters) started insisting that he was the one who should get the girl! I let him make his case and finally had to agree, but it caused a lot of overhaul.

Since then I have done a poll on Facebook asking fans who they wanted to end up with the girl and the big majority agreed with my character. It was him all along.

4. What unique factor do you think you bring to the book/story market?

First, I waited to start writing until I was old enough to really have something to say.  Secondly, one of the  comments I hear most often is that people enjoy the chronicle style of ongoing story. I call it a serial saga. If I                 were not an Indie, it never would have happened because it doesn’t fit the commercial “formula” of how to pie chart a paranormal romance. (Yes. I made a verb out of the phrase “pie chart”.)

5. What was the hardest part of writing your book?

The hardest part of writing is slogging through the emotion. I know that, if I’m crying so hard I can hardly see the  PC screen, I’ve gotten it right, but it’s also very emotionally draining and it ruins my looks for half a day.                 Conversely, if I’m lying in bed at night reading my own book and laugh out loud, I know I got that right as well.

6. Who were your major influences?

Stephen King, Anne Rice, my tenth grade literature teacher without whom I might never have read Julius   Caesar, MacBeth, Random Harvest, or Lord Jim, my seventh grade English teacher without whom I never                 would have read the entire works of William Saroyan, my father who bought me the Scribner Collection which  included all the classics appropriate for young readers. (I learned to love the art of story AND the art of Maxfield                 Parrish who illustrated the covers.)

7. Do you have any advice for any other aspiring writers out there?

Yes. Writers are born, not made. Run as hard and fast as you can from a course on “creative writing” classes because nothing will kill your own embryonic art or creativity faster.

PART THREE: PERSONAL

1. What are 5 fun/interesting facts about you?

I play bridge. I like going to movies in the daytime by myself (though I rarely get to). I teach magickal arts online.  I worked for the airlines when I was very young and have traveled a lot. I speak canine. (Bonus #6. I do all my

own graphics work: covers, ads, book trailers, etc.)

2.  What is the most inspiring quote you have ever heard?

a. This actually relates to how busy I am. It’s a motto used as my email signature on personal mail. THE QUOTE: “It’s better to burn out, than fade away.” – Rock of Ages, Def Leppard. Some people have wrongly attributed this to Kurt Cobain. Sorry. No. Others have said it wasn’t Def Leppard, it was Neil Young, “It’s better to burn out, than to fade away,” – My, My, Hey, Hey. Also wrong. Neil Young used an extra “to”. Big difference you see.

b. Winston Churchill is reported to have given a commencement address in which he simply took the podium and said, “Never give up,” nine times.

3. What’s your favorite book?

Memnoch the Devil, Anne Rice. Also high up on the list: The Gate to Women’s Country by Sherri S Tepper and Good Omens  by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. HOWEVER, I wouldn’t recommend any of these to someone unless I knew that they were students of religious studies or, in the case of Gate, feminism.

4. Greatest joy?

Reviews.

5. Greatest aggravation?

Reviews.

Now, about A Summoner’s Tale… If you haven’t read Books One and Two, I hope you will do so before you read Book Three. Black Swan is a serial saga meaning that each book is actually a chapter installment in an ongoing story. This particular installment involved characters that were introduced in the first book.

If you read by Kindle, you will find A Summoner’s Tale available at Amazon after release. If you another e-reader, you can still get the book in the form of an anthology that will be available in electronic format everywhere. The Order of the Black Swan Collected Tales, Books 1-3. $6.99 for all 330,000 words. This is a dream come true for me because readers will experience the first three books as conceived as one story.

*****

Giveaway

Click on the Rafflecopter link below to enter the Order of the Black Swan Giveaway

You have a chance to win one of 7 E-copies of THE BLACK SWAN SET, Books 1-3

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

*****

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To post a comment or start a discussion, click the small green  “Leave a comment”  link located at the end of this post after the listed book tags.

Spotlight & Review of Moonlight: The Big Bad Wolf (Order of the Black Swan, Book 4)

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Moonlight: The Big Bad Wolf (Order of the Black Swan, Book 4) by Victoria Danann

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Genre: Paranormal Romance, Fantasy Romance

Publisher: 7th House

Date of Publication: May 26, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-933320-69-4 ebook

ISBN: 978-1-933320-64-9 paperback

Number of pages: 390

Word Count: 90,000

Amazon: Moonlight: The Big Bad Wolf (Black Swan 4)

Book Description

This is the fourth installment in the Black Swan serial saga. Reading in order is essential. The first book, My Familiar Stranger, is free everywhere. (Nominated for Best Paranormal Romance by REVIEWERS CHOICE AWARDS.  Nominated for Best Indie Paranormal Romance and Best Indie Fantasy Romance for READERS CHOICE AWARDS. Night Owl Reviews TOP PICK.

What would you do for love? 

1. Storm’s unexpected reply when tapped to replace Sol as the new Jefferson Unit Sovereign. 

2. B Team learns the shocking truth about the origin of the vampire virus.

 3. Monq races to develop a defense system to repel invasion from Stagsnare.

4. Litha volunteers her father to help to Black Swan.

5. Desperation drives Stalkson Grey to embark on an adventure beyond his wildest dreams in a bid to save the Elk Mountain werewolves from extinction. In the process he learns that true love can find you in the strangest places, even when you’re far, far from home.

*****

Excerpt from Moonlight: The Big Bad Wolf

Chapter 1

“What do you know about my sister and that prancin’ prick of a fairy prince?”

Elora blinked, but in the space of that flutter he learned all he needed to know. He had found out the first night Storm brought her to poker, back at Jefferson Unit, that her very expressive face telegraphed even the tiniest nuance or feeling or thought. By now he knew her so well that she was as transparent as air. She was caught off guard because she hadn’t expected that question while Ram was cooking a leisurely Sunday breakfast.

“Say that three times fast?”

“No’ goin’ to work this time. Stay on topic.”

“You just don’t like him because he can stand toe to toe with you and not be cowed by the H.O.H. elfster.”

“ELFSTER!? What in Paddy’s Name, Elora? And what is H.O.H.?”

“Hall of Heroes.”

Ram turned away from frying bacon and gave her a look. It probably didn’t have the effect he intended. He was wearing jeans, a long sleeve black tee that stretched across his chest enticingly, and a black Jack Daniels apron tied around his waist. She thought perhaps nothing was sexier than watching Ram’s muscles ripple while cooking her breakfast.

“Do no’ try to deflect. ‘Tis I. And Paddy knows I can tell when you’re hidin’ somethin’.” Ram looked determined.

“Speaking of hiding. You’re going to have to do something about all these guys overrunning our property. Our home – the one that was intended to be our very own, very private property. Please, Ram. Make them go away.”

His expression softened a little as he decided to allow himself to be temporarily derailed.

“Sol, Simon, and every one of your friends agree that we can no’ leave you and Helm vulnerable after the threat those alien buggers left hangin’ in the air. That goes especially for your friend, Sir Storm.”

My friend, Sir Storm?”

“Aye. Your friend. The bloody wanker suggested that I’m no’ responsible enough to be entrusted with lookin’ out for you. Said, ‘You’re no’ takin’ good care of my namesake’s mother. I’ll be forced to give the job to someone else if you do no’ shape up and begin takin’ it seriously’.”

Elora laughed. “He said that?”

“Aye. As if ’twas all my doin’ that you ended up givin’ birth alone in a freezin’ wolf cave. With. No. Phone.”

“Well…”

Ram narrowed his eyes at her. “Think very carefully about what you are about to say before you say it.”

Elora smiled brightly. “I was going to say that no one in his right mind could fault you.”

Ram nodded and resumed turning the bacon. “Exactly. I should have reminded him what happened when he was in charge of the Baka interview at Unit Drac. He pouted for hours after learnin’ first hand that the Lady Laiken does as she fuck-well pleases.”

Elora concurred by nodding vigorously. “It’s a burden, but you bear it well, my love.”

“All kiddin’ aside. I do. I really do.” He began setting strips of cooked bacon out to drain the grease.

“Well, Sir Storm is going to be plenty busy with his own burdens.”

“What’s your meanin?”

“They’re expecting.”

“Expectin’ a baby?”

“No. They’re expecting Publishers Clearing House to pay for their villa renovation.”

Ram gave her a look. “You know, I’m thinkin’ there’s only enough of this lovely bacon for one and, since I cooked, I really should be keepin’ it for myself.”

“Yes! They’re expecting a baby. Litha thinks it’s a girl.”

“A girl!” Ram practically whooped. “Paddy’s Great Balls Afire. I can no’ wait to see Storm try to be da to a girl.” He laughed enjoying that idea and then grew serious. “As for the buggers who violated my grandda’s forest, I’ll no’ be givin’ ’em a second chance at my family.”

“Rammel. I hear you and I understand you.”

“I do no’ suppose the next sentence will be ‘and I obey you’.”

Elora smirked while she snagged a piece of bacon. “Have I ever mentioned you make great bacon?” She nuzzled his ear on the way back to her stool. “Almost as good as chocolate.”

Ram pointed a spatula at her. “I swear to Paddy you have that thin’… that ADDD.”

“ADHD?”

“Aye.”

Elora started laughing. “Pot.”

When his brows drew together she smiled because Helm looked at her with that same expression several times a day. They made him accidentally in a snow covered cottage, but he was made with love and now he was a little bit her and a little bit him. A miracle indeed.

“You can no’ concentrate ’cause you’ve been smokin’ dope?”

“No! ‘Pot’ as in ‘you’re the pot calling the kettle black’.”

Ram stared at her for a few beats, finally shook his head and said, “No idea.”

“You don’t have an expression here about the pot calling the kettle black?”

“We do no’ that I know of, but I think I begin to follow your point. You’re tryin’ to say that I should no’ be accusin’ you of short attention because mine is even shorter?”

Of their own accord, his eyes drifted down to the cleavage showing between the henley buttons she’d left undone.

She chuckled. “See?”

“See what?”

She did a little shimmy and he grinned sheepishly. “Guilty.” He put an orange juice in front of her. “And be careful of the sexy dancin’. You’ll be gettin’ Helm’s milk all over your clothes again.”

Elora rolled her eyes. “He gets enough. Have you seen how chubby his little face is getting?”

“Well, blood will tell.”

Elora narrowed her eyes to slits. “Rammel. Paddy help you if you’re saying what I think you’re saying.”

“All I’m sayin’ is that chubby cheeks do no’ run on my side of the family.” When she took a mock threatening step toward him, he laughed. “Just teasin’ darlin’ girl. Just teasin’. You know I would no’ change a hair on your head. Or his.”

“Okay. All I’m sayin’ is that insanity doesn’t run on my side of the family.” A look of horror slowly covered her face as she realized what she’d just said. She hadn’t yet personally confronted what the assassin in the woods had said about the Laiwynn clan, but if it was true, it meant that cruelty and despotic behavior might run in her family.

Ram put his utensils down, wiped his hand on his apron, and offered himself for a hug. She stepped into the comfort of his arms.

“What I was trying to tell you earlier is that I’ve never made any secret of the fact that I won’t give up my freedom to live a restricted life, no matter how luxurious or comfortable. Not for anything.”

“No’ even for Helm? And me?”

“That’s not fighting fair and you know it.”

“When it comes to your safety – and our son’s – you think I care about fightin’ fair? ‘Tis the very last of my concerns.”

“Let me put it this way. You need to come up with a more agreeable Plan B and you need to do it while I’m still in a listening mood.”

“Any ideas?”

She looked down at her pretty Holland china plate, part of the set they got as a wedding present from Kay and Katrina. She had a picture of how good life was going to be there in their new home. Had the Ralengclan assassins spoiled her vision of the future to the point of ruin? Was it time to confront that possibility?

“No.” When she looked back up, Ram thought he might have seen her look just a little worn. Like her aura hadn’t been buffed in a while. Sometimes he caught her looking off into space and he suspected that she was thinking about what she’d been told by the Ralengclan assassin, wondering if the massacre of her family was really a coup d’etat.” Armed people guarding the house. Hardly what I pictured.”

“I know.” Ram sat down next to her and took her hand in his. “We’ll figure it out. Monq’s workin’ on it.” He pulled up like he had an idea. The change was so subtle that no one besides Elora would have even noticed it.

“What?”

“He’s workin’ on detectin’ interdimensional activity – identifyin’ the source and location. He says ’tis a logical first step toward the defense system we’re goin’ to be needin’.”

“Yeah. I heard.”

“Well…” She knew she was in trouble when he turned on that look that he had given her the first night they had met, the puppy dog plea that was so irresistible she could be manipulated out of her socks with full knowledge and complicity. She hated that. It was… manipulation by consent.

“Stop that right now!”

“‘Twas just thinkin’ that, for the time bein’, just while we’re sortin’ this out, maybe we should move back into Jefferson Unit. You and Helm would be safe there. I know ’tis no’ ideal, but there is the courtpark, food, and babysittin’ on demand. ‘Tis no’ this.” He looked around the room and gave a little sigh. He had put a lot of himself into renovating the property and somewhere along the way had come to understand why she loved it and pictured their little family living happily ever after there. “But we were happy at Jefferson too. We could even help Monq. Maybe speedin’ thin’s along a bit?”

“I’m expecting puppies.”

“I truly hope no one is recordin’ this conversation.” Ram’s mouth softened at the corners making him look so beautifully kissable that she had to lean in and remind herself if those kisses were as good as she remembered. He didn’t seem to mind complying with her wish. When she pulled back, he said, “We could get Glen to keep an eye on that. The wolf pups I mean.”

“This is not just some ruse that’s going to get us sucked back into active duty?”

Ram cocked his head like he was having trouble with that question. “Why would I go to so much trouble to keep you safe only so I could risk gettin’ you killed?”

Elora stared at Ram for a few seconds. “I’m not the only knight in the room and we both know how persuasive Sol can be when he wants something. Before I even consider this proposal, I need some reassurance that none of us, not you, not me, not the baby – none of us – are going to end up on any field assignment. Not in any capacity.”

Ram nodded. “Deal.”

“Okay.”

“Okay you approve of my answer or okay we’re packin’ for Fort Dixon?”

“Fort Dixon, but that’s all of us. Blackie too. And we need an apartment big enough for the four of us.”

“Thank Paddy. I’m goin’ to get a good night’s sleep for a change.”

She hadn’t realized just how much stress the fear of assassination had caused Ram until she saw his facial muscles relax. Yeah. It was a good plan. A good choice, everything considered.

And, let’s outline what would have to happen to make it possible for us to come back here and proceed to live life the way it should be lived. By ourselves. Speaking of which, I’m also not giving up the pleasure of a weekend at the cottage – just us – forever.”

Certainly. I’m no’ unreasonable.”

She smiled at him lovingly and indulgently. “Of course not. You’re my hero.”

*****

Book Review

If you are looking for a great paranormal romance series, please check out the Danann’s Order of the Black Swan. I started this series last year, when I found the first book, My Familiar Stranger, on Amazon for free. Once I finished this book, I was hooked.

Please be aware, though, that this series must be read in sequential order for you to understand and follow the plot. Unlike other series, that may focus on one main protagonist’s story, the Order of the Black Swan continues with main characters’ sagas that were started in the previous books. Now, however, their story lines become subplots surrounding a featured character  introduced earlier in the series.

Each book in the series focuses on a character’s journey to find love. In Moonlight it’s Stalkson Grey’s turn.

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Stalkson is a sexy alpha werewolf whose clan is becoming extinct because of the low number of female werewolf births.

To seek a solution, he turns to Monq, a scientist who works for the Order.  His quest takes him to multi-dimensional worlds looking for answers, and along the way, this serious, hardened alpha falls in love.  Stalkson is a dynamic character who changes as he realizes that alpha duties alone are not enough to fulfill his life.

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However, finding love is never easy, and Stalkson also never expects that he will become enamored with a human living in another dimension.  His plans to get Luna to love him back are comical and endearing.  Danann provides a modern day spin on the classic fairytale, Little Red Riding Hood and allusions to the story are subtly interwoven into the plot.

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If you like paranormal stories heavy on romance, seduction, and steamy love scenes, then you will enjoy this series. Danann’s witty and humorous style of writing creates laugh-out- loud moments that immerse you in a fantasy world where paranormal beings are the norm.

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

Rating

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*****

About the Author

Victoria DanannIf you’re looking for something new and different in PNR, you’ve come to the right place.

I write unapologetic romances with uniquely fresh perspectives on paranormal creatures, characters, and themes. Add a dash of scifi and a flourish of fantasy to enough humor to make you laugh out loud and enough steam to make you squirm in your chair. My heroines are independent femmes with flaws and minds of their own whether they are aliens, witches, demonologists, psychics, or past life therapists. My heroes are hot and hunky, but they also have brains, character, and good manners – usually – whether they be elves, demons, berserkers, werewolves, or vampires.

My first book, My Familiar Stranger, was nominated for Best Paranormal Romance of 2012 by the Reviewers’ Choice Awards. Each of my books has remained on the Amazon best seller list in category every day since release. All three also earned the Night Owl Reviews TOP PICK award.

My work has been compared to J R Ward, Karen Marie Moning, Sherrilyn Kenyon, and Lara Adrian. For example:

“I do see shades of Lara Adrian’s Breed books and shades of J R Wards Black Dagger books, but this story is unique enough that it stands out all on its own and can stand up along side those other books and I think given time will elbow them out of the way with the rich story telling and deep emotional core that makes you want to know more.” – Kerry, Musings of a Bookworm

The Order of the Black Swan is a series that is also a serial saga. Each book is an episodic installment in an ongoing story. Join me for the adventure.

WEBSITE: http://www.VictoriaDanann.com

BLOG: http://VictoriaDanann.me

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/vdanann

 TWITTER: @vdanann

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*****

Start the Series!

My Familiar Stranger

Amazon:My Familiar Stranger – Romancing the Vampire Hunters (Black Swan 1)

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Amazon:The Witch’s Dream – A Love Letter to Paranormal Romance (Black Swan 2)

Summoners Tale

Amazon:A Summoner’s Tale – The Vampire’s Confessor (Black Swan 3)

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Amazon: The Order of the Black Swan COLLECTED TALES, Books 1-3 (Black Swan Anthology)

To post a comment or start a discussion, click the small green  “Leave a comment” link located at the end of this post after the listed book tags.

Celebrate with SMR: 2 Months & 200+ Followers (Giveaway of Culture Shock)

Sun Mountain Reviews Celebrates Two Months & 200+ Followers

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I started Sun Mountain Reviews in March because I am so passionate about reading. This love led me to major in English and teach writing and literature classes for a number of years. For me, going to work was playtime because I was able to share my passion with others and delight in the stimulating discussions I had with  students and colleagues.  Since I  enjoy reading books from all genres, I wanted a place where I could express my thoughts about the books I’ve read and a space where I could be creative by adding in a variety of multimedia to complement the books and support my reviews.  Thus, Sun Mountain Reviews was born. I really didn’t have any idea that I would gain so many followers in such a short amount of time.  This was just a creative outlet for me, but now with such loyal followers, I am even more motivated to continue reading and writing to share my reading experiences with you!

In order to help me celebrate, I have partnered with author Jeanette Pekala who has graciously provided 10 ebooks of her first book in the new series Culture Shock (Culture Shock #1).  At the end of this post, you will find a link to enter the Giveaway.  Thank you Jeanette!

*****

Culture Shock (Culture Shock #1)

By: Jeanette Pekala

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Book Description

CULTURE SHOCK is a witty tale of mystery and romance with a large helping of southern hospitality.

Macy Holmes is a seventeen-year-old socially-isolated introvert since her best friend’s death a year ago. When her family decides to move from Manhattan to the quaint country town of Bougainvillea, Florida, Macy finds she’s in a completely different world. Macy is no longer the outsider hiding behind designer clothes when she is sought out by three strange students, one of whom she is particularly interested in. The more time she spends with Chad the more things don’t add up. When his true identity is finally revealed, Macy is pulled into a supernatural society with its saturation of inhabitants residing in Bougainvillea.

You would think she has enough on her plate, but no, then her dreams become infiltrated by an external magical force, Macy and her band of supernatural misfits must find the culprit behind the magic-induced nightmares. The must dodge zombie assassins, shift shape-shifters and high school bullies in order to stop this perpertrator before Macy, her friends or her parents pay the ultimate price. Espeically when Macy has the sneaking suspiciion that these dreams are reality…

*****

Excerpts from Culture Shock

Excerpt #1

There were two guys and one girl. The girl had severely long red wavy hair and flawless fair skin. She was supermodel skinny. Heroin-addict supermodel skinny. Her back was to me so I couldn’t get a good look at her face.

The first boy was sitting next to her. His back also to me, but when I first caught them spying, I noticed something peculiar about this boy. He was wearing a black hoodie, with the drawstrings tied so tight, the hood was covering nearly his whole face. He had dark aviator glasses on and gloves. Seriously, it’s like ninety-something degrees outside. Why on earth would you wear gloves? His skin, what was showing of it anyways, was even paler than the girl’s.

Excerpt #2

We found a spot over by the water free of sawgrass. It was a beautiful view. On the back end of the lake was a dense forest. It was dark just beyond the first set of trees. That was the only end of the lake that had remained uninhabited. There was a syrupy mist rising slowly off the surface of the water. It was creepy, but romantic in a sinister way. The sights, sounds, and smells all mingled together to create a scene an artist would love to capture with the stroke of his brush.

 *****

Author Interview

Readers interviewed Jeanette Pekala about her debut novel, Culture Shock. Here is what they came up with.

Tasha: How close are Jeanette and the main character? Even though it’s fiction, do you have anything in common with her? Can we get to know you by understanding the main character?

There does happen to be a little Jeanette in the main character, Macy Holmes. I like to think of her as a mixture of me and my sister. She’s silly and quirky like me but very much the fashionista diva like my sister.

Marie Ann: Did your family feel neglected when you were writing your book?

Well, my hubby doesn’t care because when I’m writing, I’m not nagging him so he can pretty much play video games all night long when I’m in a writing groove.

Nicki: What inspires you to write?

Life is what inspires me. It’s the ultimate muse—from relationships to nature and history. I pull inspiration from the deep love I have for my husband and pour that into the feelings of my characters when they’re high on love, but pull from other’s heartbreak to recreate the devastation in the souls of the characters I write. Nature inspires me—from old gnarled trees to vibrant wildflowers. It’s magical. If you’ve read Culture Shock you know I’m a history buff especially when it comes to architecture. The majestic old homes in north central Florida, so different from the city where I grew up, have inspired the fictional town of Bougainvillea where Culture Shock takes place.

Nicki: Why did you or what led you to write Culture Shock?

I awoke from a horrific nightmare one night with the taste of fear in my mouth, shaking for my life very much the same way Macy, the MC does in the book. It was a nightmare that felt so real it took me quite a few minutes to calm down afterward. After I regained my composure, a light bulb went on, Ah-ha (snap fingers) that would be a great concept for a book. I pulled out a notepad and jotted down the nightmare with a green dried out marker at 3am (it was all I could find). That’s how Culture Shock was born.

Nicki: Are you working on any current projects?

Yes, I’m currently working on Shock Wave, the second book in the Culture Shock Series. It should be released in the fall if all goes according to plan.

Arie: What is the primary focus or point of your book? Does your book strive to accomplish something intellectual, social, geopolitical, metaphysical, cultural, societal, emotional, relational, or recreational?

Wow! Good question. The primary focus of my book is entertainment. It’s definitely a light-hearted, nothing too deep though you will find plenty of humor and gore. Macy does go through an emotional journey where she tries to break out of her shell to become a confident young woman.

Cristiane: What made you write a mystery thriller? And who is the blue-print for the heroine, Macy?

I mentioned before why I wrote it. I previously had 2 failed attempts at writing novels so for weeks I was thinking, what could I write??? I need a new concept! Something that’s not overdone, or maybe something that’s popular, but with a new twist? Nothing came of my brainstorming until I had that nightmare. Culture Shock starts out slow at first, but picks up the pace and will have you staying up late into the wee hours to figure out who did what and what happens next…

 *****

About the Author

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After finishing her degree in Sociology from the University of Florida, Jeanette Pekala had no idea what she wanted to do with her life.

While her husband was deployed overseas, she focused on what she loved to do, write, where she has finally found an outlet for her overactive imagination.

She lives a not so normal life just a wee bit north of Bougainvillea where she resides with her husband and two children working on Shock Wave, book 2 in the Culture Shock Series.

*****

Contact Links

Email: jdpekala@gmail.com

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

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

Blog: http://adventuresoflifeandliterature.blogspot.com/

Website: http://jeanettepekala.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JeanettePekala

Buy Links

 Amazon: Culture Shock (Culture Shock Series) (ebook) / Culture Shock (Culture Shock Series) (Volume 1) (book)

Createspace Paperback: https://www.createspace.com/4205224

Barnes & Noble (Nook) Link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/culture-shock-jeanette-pekala/1114839472?ean=2940016355870

*****

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Click on the link below for a chance to win one of ten ebook copies of Culture Shock (Culture Shock #1)

Giveaway ends, Friday, May 31st

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*****

Thank You to all those who have helped Sun Mountain Reviews to grow!

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Review of Apocalyptic Moon (After the Bane)

Book Cover

Purchase from Amazon: Apocalyptic Moon (After the Bane)

Apocalyptic Moon (After the Bane)  by Eva Gordon

Book Description

Dr. Dora Adler’s life has been in disarray since the beginning of the zombie apocalypse, but when she gets bitten by one of the undead, her whole world is turned upside down. Held captive in a secret underground lab, the tall, muscular hunk in the next cell is her only hope for salvation. Unfortunately, he claims to be a werewolf. Yeah, and she’s supposedly a witch. Dirk Gunderson is an alpha Arbor pack werewolf. Captured and collared, he’s sold to the zombie lab in hopes his blood serum can create a vaccine. He needs to escape, but now without the hot little brunette witch. In the midst of enemy werewolves and the hordes of undead, Dirk and Dora’s sexual tension ignites a blaze hotter than the desert highway. Along their journey, they battle the inevitable: a werewolf must never take a witch as a mate.

Book Review

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Take a zombie apocalypse and weave in werewolves, shape-shifters, witches, unpredictable magic, and you have a fantastical and engaging story that surpasses the a typical paranormal novel!

The story begins in the midst of a zombie outbreak, also called the “Z-phage pandemic,” and four months later, there still isn’t a vaccine to neutralize the infection. Not only are law enforcement, scientists, and medical personnel working to control the zombie infestation, but werewolves are behind the scenes forming alliances with each other to ensure their survival.

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 The tone of this novel is unusual compared to some other zombie apocalyptic novels where seriousness and tension surround the characters who live daily in constant fear for their lives. Although Gordon certainly acknowledges the gravity of the situation, she has created characters who are trying their best to adapt to their new reality. The characters’ use of deadpan humor and sarcasm provides an element of relief in this chaotic world.

 

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Dr. Dora Adler and Dirk Gunderson are the main characters narrating the events that unfold. Having dual first-person point-of-views help the reader connect with and care about what both characters are forced to endure. This POV also allows the reader to become immersed in this tumultuous world where Dora and Dirk form an unlikely alliance for survival.

Dora is a physician who screens new patients showing possible signs of the infection. While assessing a patient in the emergency room, Dora is attacked and bitten by a newly-turned zombie.
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She knows the inevitable is about to happen. She has become infected from the bite and will soon turn into a zombie. Like other patients who are infected, she will be quarantined in a secure area located in the hospital basement, where she will never be seen again. All she will do is wait for a bullet to the head.

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Surprisingly, Dora appears to be immune to the infection. Because she shows no signs of turning, she is quickly whisked away to a secretive, government operated underground facility called “Lab Zero” where scientists work tirelessly to learn more about effective methods for killing existing zombies and search for a cure.

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Initially, Dora feels safe and secure in this safe haven, where she can positively contribute in developing a vaccine. However, she is kept in a bulletproof glass cell where she is constantly being poked with needles and continually tested to make sure she is still immune to the virus.  Over time, realizes she has become a prisoner held against her will. Now, she just wants to escape the confines of this restrictive environment.

Hope for obtaining her freedom ignites when she meets the strong, handsome Dirk Gunderson with his flaming red hair and the “most intense eyes she’d ever seen. Light blue with tawny flecks of gold around his pupils. Feral eyes. Her skin prickled as if he was predator and she the prey.” Indeed, this look foreshadows the truth about Dirk. He is a sexy alpha werewolf who dresses in leather and rides a Harley when outside of his pack’s compound.

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(Okay no red hair here, but you get the gist of sexy!)

Dirk is second in line to become leader of his pack, and to prepare for his future, his uncle wants him to find a shape-shifter mate. However, Dirk is “a confirmed player. Born to be wild and never bound to any female, at least for more than a night or two.”

 

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While searching for the werewolf hunter who slaughtered most of his family years ago, Dirk finds himself captured by the very hunter he seeks. Instead of killing him, the hunter sells him to Lab Zero for testing, since wolves are immune to infection caused by zombie bites.

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Although Dirk is surly and brooding in his captivity, he can’t help but notice the lovely, brunette, Dora, situated in the cell next to his. The two pass the time engaging in flirtatious banter where they begin to learn more about each other.

During their conversations, three relevant bits of information emerge. First, Dora learns to accept that werewolves do in fact exist, contrary to everything she has been taught.

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Second, Dirk figures out Dora is a powerful Aradia witch, whose powers are slowly emerging. Dora is shocked at this discovery:“This can’t be happening. I’m sitting here, listening to a werewolf tell me I’m a witch.”Dora considers the possibility that she is losing her sanity.

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Finally, because she is a witch, Dora is able to reach out with her mind and communicate telepathically with Dirk. Their combined abilities prove vital in their successful escape from Lab Zero.

When the opportunity presents itself for escape, Dora and Dirk must battle armed security guards

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And hordes of zombies swarming everywhere
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Fear of being attacked by zombies enables Dora to realize she does have magical abilities that she can call upon when put in dangerous situations. Although she has had no formal training in using her magic, rhyming seems to work for her some of the time. For example, when she gets trapped in a bathroom with zombies, she calls out “Abracadabra with so many zombies in sight, do let me escape by flight.” Her intention on escape along with the rhyme allows her to levitate to the ceiling until Dirk comes to her rescue. He tells her, “Good thing you have your witchmacallit going on.” The unpredictability of her magic definitely keeps the story interesting and unpredictable.

Once they manage to escape, Dora is determined to reunite with her brother and niece, while  Dirk wants nothing more than to bring her back to the pack’s compound where she can stay safe and then look for her family. He knows his pack will be overjoyed to have Dora because of she is both a physician and a witch. However, it’s not just her abilities that keep Dirk from abandoning her; it’s their growing attraction to one another:

“Since meeting her, he thought of no one else. She made him feel an entire range of emotions from fierce protectiveness to utter joy. This couldn’t be right. He was supposed to take a werewolf or another shifter as a mate, not a human and definitely not a witch.”

The sexual tension between the two reaches its peak when they finally confront each other about their mutual attraction. I really appreciate how both are honest with each other, instead of playing games and denying their true feelings, for fear of rejection. They admit the truth, even though they know it’s wrong to take their relationship to a level beyond friendship.

Dirk: “We talk now Dora, how do you feel about me?”

Dora: “Lupine or not, you’re the hottest guy I’ve ever been with. My wolf in shining red fur armor. I know you need to find the right mate and I’m human and of the witchy variety which makes your life and mine complicated.”

Dirk: “Everybody has a complicated life. Without you, life is meaningless.”

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After this admission, their passion for each other can no longer be denied. When they become intimate, Dirk impulsively sets into motion irrevocable changes that will change their lives forever.

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Can Dirk and Dora find a way to be together in the midst of the overwhelming obstacles they face?

Besides killing zombies,

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Dirk and Dora must deal with a kidnapping, enemy wolf attacks,

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a jealous she-wolf who wants to be Dirk’s mate,

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and the inevitable process of adapting to a changing world where nothing may ever be the same again.

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Throughout the book, the author subtly addresses thought-provoking themes for consideration. Do our own self-interests create the potential for devastating consequences that impact the lives of others?   How can we adapt in a world that we no longer recognize? Can we put aside our differences and unite for the greater good of humanity?

Apocalyptic Moon (After the Bane) is an action-packed adventure with plenty of drama and suspense for all of the paranormal adrenaline-junkies out there. Peppered with witty, dry humor to alleviate some of the most contentious moments, the novel will keep you spell-bound and clamoring for more. The good news, a sequel is in the works!

Rating:

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Book Trailer

About the Author

Official Website of Eva Gordon

The Bestiary Parlor: The Musings of a Zoologist Turned Author

Goodreads Profile

music blue black round 50Music to Complement the Book

REM “It’s The End of the World as We Know It” (Lyrics by Ted Agee)

Steppenwolf  “Born to Be Wild” (Lyrics)

Eagles “Witchy Woman”

Guns N’ Roses “Paradise City”

Lenny Kravitz “American Woman”

Whitesnake “Is this Love”

Steve Miller Band “Abracadabra” (Lyrics)

Queen “Another One Bites the Dust”

For Fun

The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

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The Zombie Combat Manual: A Guide to Fighting the Living Dead by Roger Ma

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My interest in zombie apocalyptic fiction is a result of my addiction to The Walking Dead (TV show on AMC)

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Feel free to leave comments or contact me if your a Walking Dead fan as well!

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Nifty Zombie Gadget:

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