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Friday, March 22, 2019

Excerpt: Fool’s Errand (Fate’s Fools, #4) by Ophelia Bell + giveaway

Fool’s Errand (Fate’s Fools, #4)
by Ophelia Bell
March 19, 2019
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance
A lost soul…

You never know what you’ve got until it’s gone. In my case that was literal – I had Ozzie West’s soul and didn’t know it, but now it’s been torn from me and him along with it. I’m afraid I will never get him back.

My heart is broken.

My three mates may try to fill that void, but they don’t understand what he meant to me. They can’t see the memories unlocked by Fate.

Only one man can help, but he’s the one man I’m afraid I can never trust again.



EXCERPT:
“Sing with me,” I whispered as I began to move. I lifted my wet hands from his shoulders to his temples, raking my fingers through his damp curls and holding on, my grip forcing his head to tilt back.

Rohan’s golden gaze fixed on my face, his eyelids fluttering slightly and his breath coming quicker as I fucked him. “Are you sure?”

“Yes. I want to try . . . ”

He gripped my hips with both hands and took a deep breath. His exhale became a long, plaintive note, his brows creasing with the tension of the first verse of a song to accompany our lovemaking.

The music was the perfect mix of hungry and sweet, and I clung to him as the notes settled inside me. I ached to join in when the tension of the pleasure coiled so tight I needed an outlet before I came too fast, but my voice betrayed me once again. When I tried to sing, the sound just came out as a pitiful croak, so I clamped my mouth shut, focusing on the pleasure to hold back the tears.

I buried my face in his neck, my moan half pleasure, half despair. Rohan stroked the back of my neck, halting mid-verse. “It’ll come back to you, baby. I promise. I’m proof you don’t need a turul soul to sing.”

“Just make love to me,” I whispered, pulling back to look into his eyes. He gazed intently back at me, brow creased and jaw clenched, betraying how my own hurt affected him just as acutely.

I took a deep breath and started rocking my hips again, focusing on the pleasure of our connection as he resumed the song. The music truly helped, even if I couldn’t join in without an instrument.

I let myself get lost in the rhythm he set and the deep notes that rose above the steam. I could draw the pleasure out with him, trusting that he’d let me know when he’d given too much. Rohan urged me on, holding tighter and shifting his hips into mine at a quicker tempo.

The lyrics to the song gave way to his cries of pleasure as we crested together, both of us finding our climax at the same second amid sloshing water and slippery, gasping kisses. Rohan’s strained expression fell into laughter as he relaxed, his skin glowing faintly with my iridescent magic and my own skin glimmering golden and wet.

I sank against him with a sigh, grateful for yet another reprieve from the ever-encroaching threat to my sanity and the added disappointment of losing my voice. Perhaps with enough time and their continued attention, that need would fade and my songs would return. For now, I would enjoy the lucidity when I had it and let them do the singing for me.

About the Author:
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Ophelia Bell loves a good bad-boy and especially strong women in her stories. Women who aren't apologetic about enjoying sex and bad boys who don't mind being with a woman who's in charge, at least on the surface, because pretty much anything goes in the bedroom.

Ophelia grew up on a rural farm in North Carolina and now lives in Los Angeles with her own tattooed bad-boy husband and four attention-whoring cats.

If you'd like to receive regular updates on Ophelia's publications, freebies, and discounts, please subscribe to her mailing list: http://opheliabell.com/subscribe

GIVEAWAY
Blitz-wide giveaway (INTL)
A signed paperback copy of Fate's Fools + a $15 Amazon gift card 
ends March 28th

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Book Review: The Devil and the Dancer: (An Elemental Legacy Novella Book 4) by Elizabeth Hunter

The Devil and the Dancer: (An Elemental Legacy Novella Book 4) 
by Elizabeth Hunter
March 19, 2019
Pages: 94
Sometimes falling is the safest step to take.

Chloe Reardon has a problem, and his name is Gavin Wallace.

Okay, Gavin isn’t exactly a problem, unless you consider a highly attractive wind vampire with dubious intentions a problem. Especially if that vampire is your boss. With an affinity for kilts and excellent taste in music.

But none of that matters because Chloe Reardon has had enough of dangerous men. Danger is overrated. Danger is the opposite of sexy. So Gavin is the last man—or vampire—on earth she needs to let into her heart.

Except what if the most dangerous man you knew was also the one who made you feel the strongest?


Chloe and Gavin have a strange relationship. Chloe is human and a bit skittish after a horrible relationship and Gavin is a vampire. Gavin wants Chloe in his bed and his life and since Chloe is unsure he’s prepared to wait if necessary. Chloe knows that she’s attracted to Gavin but isn’t sure that she’s capable of his lifestyle.

Chloe is a breath of fresh air! She is a dancer who loves to move and has a freedom about her that most characters don’t. Gavin is stubborn but determined and the two have a chemistry that brings a smile to your face.

Review: Midnight Labyrinth: (An Elemental Legacy Book)
Review: Imitation & Alchemy: (An Elemental Legacy Novella Volume 2)
Review: Omens & Artifacts: (An Elemental Legacy Novella Book 3)


Getting 5 sheep




Denise B



About the Author:
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Elizabeth Hunter is a contemporary fantasy, paranormal romance, and contemporary romance writer. She is a graduate of the University of Houston Honors College and a former English teacher. She once substitute taught a kindergarten class, but decided that middle school was far less frightening. Thankfully, people now pay her to write books and eighth-graders everywhere rejoice.

She currently lives in Central California with her son, two dogs, many plants, and a sadly dwindling fish tank. She is the author of the Elemental Mysteries and Elemental World series, the Cambio Springs series, the Irin Chronicles, and other works of fiction.

Release Day: Unbreak Me by Maria Vickers + giveaway


Unbreak Me
by Maria Vickers
March 21, 2019
Genre: MM, Paranormal Romance
Cover Designer: T.E. Black Designs
Cover Models: TankJoey and Dr. Travis France

Two broken hearts, one wandering soul.

They were supposed to be together forever. That was the plan, but through a cruel twist of fate the night before their three-year anniversary, Tex Davis lost the one man he would ever love, Memphis King. A year has passed and he still hasn’t been able to move on. Everyone tells him it’s time, but what do they know? Memphis was his partner in love and life. Losing him, broke Tex.

Tex has been given an opportunity to move from New York to Seattle. His friends and family are encouraging him to take it, but he has already decided to decline the offer because that would mean leaving Memphis behind.

Then something happened.

Whether it be fate or something else, Memphis came back to him. Tex’s first love is supposed to help him move on, but not even Memphis can bring himself to force Tex to let him go.

Is it so wrong to want to spend forever with the person you loved most? Both hearts are begging to be unbroken.






About the Author:
Maria Vickers currently lives in St. Louis, MO with her pug, Spencer Tracy. She has always had a passion for writing and after she became disabled in 2010, she decided to use writing as her escape. She believes that life is about what you make of it. You have to live it to the fullest no matter the circumstances.

From a young age, she has always loved books and even dreamed of being an author when she was younger. Growing up in the Navy, she used to weave tales for her siblings and her friends about anything and everything. And when she wasn't creating her own stories, she had a book in her hand. They transported her to another world. She hopes that with her books, her readers have the same experience and that they can relate to her characters.

Getting sick changed her life forever, but it also opened doors for her that she thought would always be out of reach.

$25 Amazon gift card


Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Author Anecdote: Rebecca Henry shares a ghostly encounter

Ewe won’t believe this...but the first time I moved to England I was in my twenties with my husband and our daughter who was a toddler. We lived in an older brick townhouse. About two years into our move I began to notice strange happenings in the house. My daughter’s room was riddled with all your quintessential toddler battery operated toys. One of my daughter’s favorite toys was a Disney speaking kitchen oven and stove combo. Snow white would say “It’s a beautiful morning!” and other sweet phrases. I was sitting at the dining room table with my little girl, Penelope, when I heard the familiar sound of snow white’s voice saying from the upstairs bedroom “It’s a beautiful morning!” followed by the sound of an egg frying. I went upstairs to check on the toy oven to discover it was turned off, and obviously, the room was completely empty of people. 

That was the first of many odd happenings in my daughter’s room with her toys. Over the next year, this would happen weekly. Battery operated toys turning on and making sounds. Things eventually progressed to my kitchen radio switching on while I was cooking dinner. I was never frightened by the occurrences, but rather puzzled and alarmed by why this was happening. I used to investigate the wires and batteries and finally began removing batteries and unplugging the radio when I wasn’t using the items. This remedied the situation until the lights in my bedroom began to turn on not off, but on in the middle of the night waking me up. 


A few months before we moved my neighbor who lived in the adjacent townhouse came over for a cup of tea. She mentioned something that shook me to the core, making the hair on the back of my neck stand up. She said “Rebecca, I had the weirdest dream last night. I woke up in the middle of the night to a little girl dressed in old fashion clothes standing at the foot of my bed. She didn’t say anything but when I turned on the light she was gone.” After that I started to yell out into the room whenever my radio would turn on “Don’t do that. Please stop now.” Just in case it was a little girl who needed a mother’s direction. I moved shortly after and my daughter’s toys never did spontaneously turn on again, but that’s my story and that’s what really happened.


The Lady Raven (A Dark Cinderella Tale)
by Rebecca Henry
November 30, 2017
Genre: Fantasy, Fairy Tale Retold
Publisher: Austin Macauley
ISBN: 1786935783
ASIN: 978-1786935786
Number of pages:175
Word Count: 48,863
Cover Artist: Austin Macauley
For those who have an affinity for magic, witches, dark fairy tales, and the macabre...

In The Lady Raven, Rebecca Henry tells the tale of Zezolla, a little princess abandoned by her father into the hands of her evil stepmother and wicked stepsisters. A familiar fairy tale you may think but all is not as it appears. The reader is soon drawn into a web of witchcraft, lies and deceit, and gradually realizes that this is no typical fairy tale, but a dark and macabre take on one.

Zezolla is treated with the utmost cruelty, neglected and vilified, and left to live in the damp cellars of the castle. The only friends Zezolla has are her beloved raven and her pet wolf. Her only comfort lies in the loyalty of the creatures of the forest, and her mother's hazel tree.

Will Zezolla have the power to escape her torment and ultimately save herself from the unscrupulous clutches of the king? The Lady Raven is a compelling tale, and one that is not for the faint-hearted.


Excerpt:
Zezolla entered the forest, twig in one hand, shattered glass in the other. She moved effortlessly through the night as if she herself had wings which carried her. She came to a clearing, a streak of moonlight shining on the frozen ground. “This is the spot, my love.” The raven flew into the sky circling Zezolla as she dug into the ground. “Remember the order, my princess. Plant the twig and then the glass.”

“I call upon the spirit of my mother. I command you to leave the grave in which my mother’s body rests. Awaken now and bring forth the tree of life!” Zezolla held her hands up to the moon invoking its powers. “I am the daughter of the witch Avelina. I invoke the powers of the night. Come to me, my mother’s spirit. I welcome you!” A silver mist traveled above. The raven flew down to his princess. “She is coming, princess.” Zezolla watched as a tiny branch came forth from the dirt. Slowly it grew, taller and taller. More branches came. Zezolla thought she saw the figure of a woman in the tree. Shards of glass formed together creating glass leaves, dangerous to anyone who touched it - anyone but Zezolla. The princess stood up amazed by the beautiful sight before her. “It is complete, my love. My mother is here and her spirit resides inside the tree.” A remarkable hazel tree stood before her, 15 feet tall with a small opening at the base big enough for Zezolla to fit through. She examined the leaves running her long fingers over the glass. “It cannot cut me my love.” She held out her arm for the raven to perch. “But it will be dangerous to anyone else who tries to touch it.”

The two men made it to the barrier, gasping in horror. “What entrance is this!?” cried out Jack. “This was never here. There has never been an entrance to the forest.” Jack backed away, terrified that Zezolla awakened a spirit inside the forest. “It’s just a narrow passage. It must have been caused by the cold ice.” concluded Edward logically.

Jack shook his head. “No, Hexe did this. She has opened the forest. Who knows what evil lurks inside? These grounds are now cursed.”

“If that is true then I will not venture in.” Edward turned to leave but Jack stopped him. “This might be valuable to me Edward. If Hexe possesses some magical entity inside the forest then I want it.”

Jack grabbed Edward by the collar and moved him through the opening. Edward clung to his knife, jumping at the sounds around them. “There is a light coming from beyond the trees. Could be lightening. Let’s go see what Hexe is up to.” Edward tried to turn back, but Jack had a strong hold on him. “Courage man! You’re no better than a scared boy.” snarled Jack.

Zezolla, unaware of the servants approaching, entered the hazel tree. Edward ducked down behind a bush as he saw Zezolla disappear.

“We must leave now! I told you this would be our death! She is a witch! Did you just see how she entered that glass tree?!”

Jack was too fascinated to leave. He had never witnessed true magic before. “I want to take a closer look.”

“What? Are you mad! If you go near that tree that will be the end of you!”

Jack did not listen to Edward and walked over to the magical tree which was shimmering in the moonlight. “I just want to see it. Stay where you are if you are afraid,” Jack snorted.

“To hell with curiosity. I don’t want to end up without my head like Princess Guinevere. Go on then, you fool! Go see your magical tree.”

The tree seemed to call to Jack, beckoning him forward. “It’s so beautiful. Look at the sparkling leaves.” He reached out to touch one. The branch moved slicing his finger off his hand. Jack screamed in pain, clenching his finger to his chest. He tried to run away, but the tree caught him in her branches.

Edward stayed hidden, watching in horror as Jack cried out for help. “Edward, help me!”

“Stupid fool. I told him not to get closer.” muttered Edward

The tree tightened its grip around Jack, cutting him as it squeezed. “Please! I am sorry! Please let me go!” The tree would not accept Jack’s pleas and brought down another branch lined with razor sharp leaves. “No! No! Please, I will do anything! I will protect the princess from her stepmother. I swear to protect her as long as I live! Please, spare me!” The branch came down, slicing Jack’s throat with a row of deadly leaves.

“She needs no protection. I am with her now.” said the tree.



About the Author: 
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Rebecca Henry is the author of two novels, The Lady Raven and Louisiana Latte. In addition to writing, she is also an avid vegan, gardener, crafter and practices yoga.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

W.I.P. it Real Good from Justin Joschko's WIP The Moon Willow + giveaway

W.I.P. it Real Good
from Justin Joschko's horror WIP The Moon Willow

The second book in the Yellow Locust series, IRON CIRCLE, comes out later this month, and book 3 is in the planning stages. In the meantime, I’ve switched focus a bit to work on a horror novel called THE MOON WILLOW.

Eleven-year-old Samantha Palmer has begun having strange encounters in her country home. Voices whisper from stairwells, the floor beneath her bed turns to dirt, and a strange creature with huge teeth and yellow eyes grins at her from the shadows.

While seeking answers, she discovers a box buried in the wall of her root cellar. Inside are seeds and a scrap of yellowing paper bearing a single name: morlocksbane. She plants them, and the resulting flowers seem to drive the visions away—for a while.

Things take a darker turn one night, when her parents are out and she’s left alone with her babysitter, a college student named Amanda:


The Moon Willow W.I.P. excerpt
Moonlight slanted through the blinds of her window, where it sprawled like toppled columns from some Atlantean ruin. The flowers on her windowsill spread their petals in full bloom, blossoms turned to the windowpane. There was an air of genuflection to their posture, as if they were penitents absorbed in silent prayer. They seemed almost to be made of moonlight themselves, their silver petals sparkling faintly in the moon’s cool glow. Samantha watched them for a while. She drew comfort from their presence, though the reason for that feeling was something she couldn’t quite define. It was as if the peace she perceived in them, though obviously projected from her own mind—they were just flowers, after all; they didn’t think or feel anything—infused the air around her.

The sensation was so strong that she barely flinched at the thump that sounded outside her bedroom door, though a few minutes earlier such a sound would’ve have likely sent her halfway to the ceiling with right. As it stood now, her mind alighted on the most obvious conclusion: that Amanda had something to ask her.

“Come in,” she called.

The door swung halfway open. When a few seconds passed and Amanda didn’t enter, the first cracks appeared in the supposed bedrock of her calm. She chastised herself for her worry, slight as it was.

“Amanda? Is everything okay?”

There was no answer, just the silence of the hall and the slow whisper of the wind outside her window. The door pushed open another few inches. The cracks in her composure widened.

“Is someone there? Hello?”

A pale comet flew through the doorway and landed on her bed with a muted thump. Samantha peered at it over the top of her covers. Amanda’s head stared back at her, its eyes frozen in a look of glassy puzzlement. Her neck ended in a clean stump from which nearly all the blood had been drained. It left a reddish crescent where it touched the bedsheet, the sort of dappled, ghostly image made by a rubber stamp on its third pressing.




by Justin Joschko
May 8, 2018
Genre: Science Fiction Dystopian
Publisher: Month9Books
ISBN: 978-1-946700-63-6
ASIN: B079828BLX
Number of pages: 306
Cover Artist: Danielle Doolittle
Selena Flood is a fighter of preternatural talent. But not even her quick fists and nimble feet could save her parents from the forces of New Canaan, the most ruthless and powerful of the despotic kingdoms populating America-that-was.

Forced to flee the tyrannical state with her younger brother Simon in tow, Selena is now the last chance for peace in a continent on the verge of complete destruction.

In her pocket is a data stick, the contents of which cost her parents their lives. Selena must now ensure it reaches the Republic of California—a lone beacon of liberty shining across a vast and barren wasteland—before it’s too late.

Between New Canaan and California stretch the Middle Wastes: thousands of desolate miles home to murderers, thieves, and a virulent strain of grass called yellow locust that has made growing food all but impossible. So when Selena and Simon stagger into Fallowfield, an oasis of prosperity amidst the poisoned plains, everything seems too good to be true—including the warm welcome they receive from the town’s leader, a peculiar man known only as The Mayor.

As Selena delves deeper into the sinister secrets of this seemingly harmless refuge, she soon learns there is a much darker side to Fallowfield and the man who runs it. Before long, she must call upon the skills she honed in the fighting pits of New Canaan to ensure not only her own survival, but that of her brother, in whom the Mayor has taken far too keen an interest.

And she’d better act fast, for an all-out war inches ever closer, and New Canaan is never as far away as it seems.

Excerpt:
The grass followed the siblings into town, looming silently along the highway shoulders, lancing up through broken sidewalk slabs, squatting in the cavernous lobbies of derelict skyscrapers. It stalked them all the way to the city center, where a square kilometer of turf and asphalt had been pared away to uncover the silty soil beneath. Stakes with tips painted green, blue, and orange still jutted evenly along the field’s southern edge, though whether the colors signified crop rotation or ownership, Selena couldn’t say. Only one plant grew there now, and she was willing to bet it hadn’t been deliberately planted. The yellow grass devoured every inch of naked soil, creating a neck-high carpet of brittle, oily stalks. We aren’t gonna find any food on offer here, Selena thought, though she kept this opinion to herself—the last thing her brother needed was more bad news.

A fountain stood on a cobbled square beside the field, its ledge chipped and weathered. A bronze woman stood atop its stone platform, her face tarnished and scaly with grime. She held aloft a jug with a broken handle. Water dribbled from its spout. No food, maybe, but water’s more important anyway.

Selena knelt to the water. A caustic stench of grease and bitter herbs rose from the pool. A skein of shimmery oil coated the water, stirred to a rainbow froth where the trickling spout spilled its endless contents. Selena rolled up her pant legs, removed her shoes, and waded into the fountain. The water’s scummy skin clung to her leg hairs. She cupped her hands beneath the dribble.

Even before the water touched her lips, she knew it was bad. The stench of it lapped at her face like a hungry tongue. She sipped anyway, gagged, spat. Running or still, the water was hopelessly befouled. Its taste and smell lingered long enough for her to place it: the smell of the yellow grass, the few times she’d been forced to push her way directly through it. Not content with razing the town’s crops, the vile stuff had also poisoned its water supply. Whatever this shit is, it’s thorough.


About the Author:
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Justin Joschko is an author from Niagara Falls, Ontario. His writing has appeared in newspapers and literary journals across Canada. Yellow Locust is his first novel. He currently lives in Ottawa with his wife and two children.






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