GtPGKogPYT4p61R1biicqBXsUzo" /> Google+ I Smell Sheep: April 2019

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Book Review: Little Darlings by Melanie Golding

Little Darlings 
by Melanie Golding
April 30, 2019
315 pages
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
ASIN: B07H7SGH32 

ISBN: 9781683319979 
MP3 CD: 9781982628758
Everyone says Lauren Tranter is exhausted, that she needs rest. And they’re right; with newborn twins, Morgan and Riley, she’s never been more tired in her life. But she knows what she saw: that night, in her hospital room, a woman tried to take her babies and replace them with her own…creatures. Yet when the police arrived, they saw no one. Everyone, from her doctor to her husband, thinks she’s imagining things.

A month passes. And one bright summer morning, the babies disappear from Lauren’s side in a park. But when they’re found, something is different about them. The infants look like Morgan and Riley—to everyone else. But to Lauren, something is off. As everyone around her celebrates their return, Lauren begins to scream, These are not my babies.

Determined to bring her true infant sons home, Lauren will risk the unthinkable. But if she’s wrong about what she saw…she’ll be making the biggest mistake of her life.

Compulsive, creepy, and inspired by some our darkest fairy tales, Little Darlings will have you checking—and rechecking—your own little ones. Just to be sure. Just to be safe.


Lauren Tranter gives birth to twin boy babies. Her husband, Patrick is not there for support and not there for her once they go home, making him unlikable from the beginning and he does nothing to help Lauren’s fragile state. The reader doesn’t know if a nasty faery being wants to abduct Lauren’s sons or if it’s just a post-partum hallucination of a sleep-deprived, mentally-ill woman. Readers who are mothers will see themselves in Lauren, not only in the first few months after giving birth but in the sheer horror and panic surrounding every mother's worst fear—losing their child, whether death or by abduction.

The other character in the book we see from her third person POV is DS Jo Harper, an investigator for the local police force. The details of Harper’s investigation, along with folklore about changelings and faeries at the beginnings of each chapter make the story creepy and unnerving. 


Between the strange woman that Lauren sees, and things we learn about Patrick that makes us wonder about his agenda, why he married her (to me there's not one redeeming quality to the man—truly unlikeable), it will make the reader wonder what is truly going on.

“Little Darlings” is a combination of a psychological thriller and a supernatural horror novel concerning faeries and changelings. The pace is slow, but it is taut with suspense. The reader alternates between wondering if it really was a faery or Lauren’s own descent into madness. This will be a fairytale for the 21st century.

I gave Little Darlings 5 sheep.





Reviewed by Pamela K. Kinney

About the Author:
I am a UK based author with a wide range of interests, including music and folklore. In 2016 I completed the MA in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University, graduating with Distinction. My debut novel, Little Darlings, is due for publication in early 2019 with HQ HarperCollins in the UK and commonwealth, HarperCollins Canada and Crooked Lane Books in the US.

Monday, April 29, 2019

Spotlight: Kingdom of Jior series by Wendy L. Anderson + giveaway


Hey Fantasy lovers! I have your next series right here! Check out the Kingdom of Jior series by Wendy L. Anderson. Below are a few snippets from each book to get you started and a chance to win the whole series in print!


November 14th, 2016 
Publisher: Infinity Publishing 
Prince Lorn of Jior is what’s left of an evil empire. King Kullorn was the epitome of evil. Together they led demon hordes reaping death and destruction. Kullorn is killed, leaving Lorn alone to wallow in the desolation of defeat. Years later, Lorn is accused of following in his father’s footsteps and kidnapping Princess Lililaira. Risking capture, imprisonment and death Lorn attempts to learn who is using his name to start another war. During a rescue of the Princess, Lorn is badly wounded and they must fight to remain together as he is healed by her, body, heart and soul.

Memories of how life used to be, circled through Lorn’s mind as he contemplated the events of five years ago. His father, King Kullorn of Jior, had raised him with one purpose in mind and that was to lead the Jiorian armies out of the Violent Mountains and conquer the entire island continent of Vedt. Kullorn had been an evil tyrant who had reigned over the once vast empire of Jior that was now only jagged mountains, left to the encroaching forest and wild animals.

Excerpt:
Memories of how life used to be, circled through Lorn’s mind as he contemplated the events of five years ago. His father, King Kullorn of Jior, had raised him with one purpose in mind and that was to lead the Jiorian armies out of the Violent Mountains and conquer the entire island continent of Vedt. Kullorn had been an evil tyrant who had reigned over the once vast empire of Jior that was now only jagged mountains, left to the encroaching forest and wild animals.

by Wendy L. Anderson  
April 17th, 2018
Publisher: Infinity Publishing 
Five years have passed since Lorn liberated himself from Lan-Loe, his evil father’s Sorcerer. Legends were born from tales of the great battle between Lorn and a black-winged demon, of Lan-Loe’s death, and the defeat of demon-kind. Ever since that time, people have been flocking to Jior to make their homes there, and the Kingdom of Jior is revived. Lorn is crowned King of Jior, Lililaira is Queen and they rule peacefully side by side. Now a new war threatens everything they have built and everyone they love. One hundred miles away from the City of Jior, the combined armies of Vedt march toward Jior intent on slaying everyone in the kingdom and taking revenge for Lorn’s past evil deeds. With the forces of the whole country coming against them, Lorn and Lililaira have little hope of defeating their enemies. In the midst of impending war, strange dreams plague Lorn’s sleep at night. He feels that something is waiting, something he needs very badly, something is calling him! When he answers the call, he learns that he is a descendant of a race of winged people that profess to be from the Heavens. He also learns more about his past and is given hope for the future, but that hope comes with a high price. Lorn is given a choice: he can save his family or watch them die. Lililaira and their daughter are taken prisoner by her father, the King of Skoria, Lorn must call on all his resources to rescue them. Forced out of the protective walls of Jior, he must face his many enemies who use his wife and daughter as bait. King Lorn must deal with old enemies and new friends, but will he be able to tell the difference?
Excerpt
King Lorn of Jior stood looking down from the highest balcony of his black castle in the Violent Mountains. Hands gripping the black granite rail tightly, his brow furrowed as he surveyed his kingdom with a flashing violet
gaze. The muscles in his shoulders and chest tightened, and his biceps flexed as violent emotions caused him to shake with barely contained rage. He wanted to rage and howl, to gnash his teeth, to strike out, and feel bones breaking in his hands.


by Wendy L Anderson
February 13, 2019
Publisher: Infinity Publishing 
This set of adventures starts out with Princess Lyra Song, young and beautiful, stepping into maturity. She and her family attend the funeral of a dear friend. During this sad time, she pursues her hopes and dreams endeavoring to explore a betrothal with the Heir of Krickgold. However, when she is mistaken for a witch by a Lord from a neighboring country, her dreams are dangerously interrupted. Waylaid, taken prisoner and thrown into an iron cage, the delicate Princess of Jior is charged with a crime she didn’t commit and she must do whatever it takes to escape or be wrongfully executed. Prince Vannier of Jior, known to the Ny-Failen as Little Wing, has been devastated by what happened to his sister Lyra Song, but life must go on and he goes forward with his plan to marry his childhood love. The day of the wedding ceremony he finds his betrothed with another man and now he must face devastating reality and some difficult choices. When his younger brother Dark Star goes missing, Vannier must set aside his own problems to go into the Violent Mountains and find who has taken his little brother. Amidst the turmoil of the hunt, Vannier must face danger, loss, and possible heartbreak. Dark Star, the youngest Prince of Jior, has been changed forever by the events of his capture and he remains troubled and unable to find peace. A mysterious compelling draws him away from the safety of his home and family. He sets off on his own to investigate and finds a black castle and a beautiful sorceress in dire need of his help. Dark Star must face a demon from the Hells to free them both. 

Panic struck like a lightning bolt, and he stood up and whirled around, taking stock of the boundaries of his prison. It was nearly his undoing as pain, nausea and dizziness overtook him. Since his capture by the Troggs a few years back, Dark Star could not stand confined spaces. His wings beat against his back as if telling him to fly and escape. Searching for a door or exit, he could not find one, so he threw himself against the bars on all four sides, testing their strength. He flew up to the barred cage top and heaved. It was no use, he was imprisoned in a strong, heavy, iron prison, and that was all there was to it. He was locked in with no way out, like a bird in a cage. His brain kept screaming over and over, ‘Not again! Not again!’ and he flapped uselessly around the confines of his cage until the pain in his head forced him to stop. Tamping down hard on his terror, concentrating on settling his breathing, he stood in the middle of his cage, wrapped his wings around himself and huddled within their protective embrace. Closing his eyes, he retreated into his mind and waited. It seemed like hours later when the sound of a door opening and closing reached through his self-imposed trance. The faint glow of a lamp barely drew Dark Star’s attention. He was standing completely still, cocooned within his white wings watching through barely slit eyes. He had withdrawn into his own mind, holding madness at bay.


Excerpt:
Never in her life had she been so cold. Biting, lashing wind stung her flesh where it was exposed to the frigid air. Her face and hands were especially numb, so much so that she could barely feel them and feared frostbite had taken hold. Her soft leather britches and long-sleeved, woolen shirt offered little protection against the icy mountain wind. Though she was grateful for her hood and her fur-lined boots, she was still frozen through. It was growing dark. Shivering, she hugged herself as tightly as she could to conserve what little body heat she had left. Her breath misted white from her lips and rose to vanish in the night air above her.


About the Author:
Wendy L. Anderson is a Colorado native and mother of two boys. She has an English Degree from Regis University and writes books, short stories and poetry. Wendy is a devout reader of the classics, fantasy, sci-fi and historical fiction. She has decided it is time to write down the fantasies from her own mind. Writing about everything from fantastical worlds to the stuff of her dreams she takes her stories along interesting paths while portraying characters and worlds she sees in her mind’s eye. Her goal is to deviate from common themes, write in original directions and transport her reader to the worlds of her creation. 

For your chance to win a paperback set of the whole series, click the link below! 

Book Blitz Organized By: 

Chris Stoneheart: UF author and professional juggler? (Unhuman Light - Chronicles of the Light #1) + excerpt

Thanks so much for welcoming me to guest post! I wracked my brain for an interesting topic — something different — and I came up with juggling. I used to juggle professionally, and Kaitlin, the main character in Chronicles of the Light, can juggle. This ability is more than a tiny piece of her backstory. It’s posited as a reason for some of her extra-human abilities.

1. Reflexes: This is a no-brainer, right? People who juggle have fast reflexes. Duh. Onto the more interesting bits.

2. Peripheral vision: I can’t see behind me because that’s physically impossible, but I can see people coming from behind way before you’d expect me to. Also, I can see details off to the side and not just movement, which I’m told is what most people see. Kaitlin excels at martial arts, and her exceptional reflexes and peripheral vision give her a big advantage over her opponents.

3. Vegetarianism: No, I’m not making this up. I was at a juggling convention once, where about a dozen of us awakened before everyone else. It was held in a college gymnasium, and we were welcome to put a sleeping bag down in the gymnastics room off to the side, since about half of the floor was cushioned. The next morning, at our quiet little gathering of early risers, we discovered all but two of us were vegetarian. When the others awakened, one of the leaders asked the group as a whole, and the vast majority raised their hands. All attendees had spent years juggling, could juggle at least four balls (most could juggle more), and everyone juggled a variety of items. So, the takeaway is that most people who take the sport to the extreme end up deciding not to eat meat. Most of the predatory shifters don’t take Kaitlin seriously — she smells like prey, so she can’t possibly be a threat. Being underestimated can work to your advantage, sometimes.

4. Corpus callosum: Now we’re getting to the interesting part. We all know the right brain and left brain act independently, like two separate organs. What most don’t know is the corpus callosum acts as the go-between, so the two brains can communicate. However, when you begin to juggle complex patterns, there isn’t enough time for the left brain to tell the corpus callosum, and then for the corpus callosum to tell the right brain, and then for the right brain to respond to the corpus callosum, and for the… you get the point. So, the left brain and right brain form connections and begin to speak to one another directly. The concept of being whole brained isn’t new, but science has confirmed much that the mystics tried to tell us centuries ago, and in fact, MRI images of people who’ve spent decades meditating show that they, too, tend to be whole brained. This may or may not have anything to do with the vegetarian thing, but it can’t be a coincidence that most mystics are also vegetarian.

Combined, this gives us an outline of the main character in The Chronicles of the Light. Kaitlin O’Malley has fast reflexes, good peripheral vision, and she’s a vegetarian (but she’s quick to point out that she isn’t vegan). Because she thinks with her whole brain, she’s both logical and intuitive. She can pull off a few paranormal tricks, which her dragon-shifter friend calls magic, but she chooses to call it metaphysics.

The Chronicles of the Light is urban fantasy, but if you enjoy fantasy of any kind, I hope you’ll take a chance and dive into my world.



Unhuman Light (Chronicles of the Light Book One)
by Chris Stoneheart
February 7, 2019
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Kaleidowords Publishing
ASIN: B07MM6HCJB
Number of pages: 502
Word Count: 120,000
Chronicles of the Light, book one…

Bodies keep piling up, but Kaitlin O'Malley refuses to back down, even when threatened by someone once worshipped as a god. Training for a battle between good and evil, she teams up with the Dragon King and a powerful lion, and finds herself protected by a Master Vampire who wants her in his bed.

With a vile enemy ready to destroy her, the men in her life lock her up to keep her safe, but Kaitlin will never let other people fight her battles. She’ll have to break free and venture out on her own, wielding a powerful weapon to protect herself — a weapon her enemies would kill for. To face the enemy alone, Kaitlin must view the world in an Unhuman Light.

In a supernatural battle of magic and strength, can an unlikely human prevail?


Chapter One
“Aery, I need a shot!” I screamed, holding back the energy pulsing at my fingertips until he was out of the way. The instant he maneuvered to give me a clear path, I unleashed the fiery red energy and watched it streak through the air and slice into the grotesque monster who’d been holding his own in a fight with Aaron Drake.

My power drained from me as it hit our foe in the chest, melting through skin, bone, and more. I lifted my arm a few inches and the caustic light streaking from my hand rose like a laser. When it reached the hideous creature’s throat, I moved my hand right and left until he was decapitated, and then watched in horrified fascination while the body seemed to evaporate before my eyes.

My gaze swung to my friend, and I checked to be sure he was okay. I was used to Aaron totally dominating, no matter the species he was fighting, and the fact he’d maneuvered to give me a clear shot told me the ancient dragonshifter wasn’t sure he could’ve won. My heart settled when I saw he seemed okay. He’s hard to kill, but I had no idea what we’d just fought.

As far as I know, I’m the only person who can get away with a cute nickname for the sexy, tough-as-nails, bad-assed owner of Drake Security, but I never do it around other people. I wouldn’t have said it today while battling an unknown monster, but it slipped out. No problem though, the bad guy seemed to evaporate and turn to smoke once the life force left his body. I usually want to cry after a kill — even when it’s a really bad guy — but not having to look at a body made it easier. Either way, I couldn’t give into the guilt and soul searching until the op was over.

“What was that?” I asked Aaron.

“Not sure,” he said, barely out of breath. “I used to see things kind of like him a few thousand years ago, but not since we entered the Common Era. I’ll send a sketch to a few friends and see if they have any ideas. I was about to shift into dragon form and see if my fire would work, but your laser did the trick.”

I took a breath and pulled energy in from the forest around us. I’d used almost all my reserves with that one shot, and I’d be useless if something else came along. I leaned against a tree and tried to relax in the crisp, autumn air. It’s easier to absorb energy when you’re at peace.

Aaron, of course, noticed. “I can top you up. You know I have plenty.”

I shook my head. “I’m not up for pain right now. Just give me five minutes with a few trees.” I could almost always find an old tree willing to give me energy. It might take a little time, but not as long as gathering it from the air around me. A waterfall would be faster, or even a creek or stream, but I didn’t hear running water.

“I won’t push more in than you can take, not during a mission.” Aaron said. “You used it to save me, the least I can do is top you back up.”

“Okay,” I relented, “but into my hands. I’ll route it to the right chakras.”

He didn’t argue, thank goodness, and held his hands out for me to grasp. I dropped my shields enough to let his energy flow out of his palms and into mine, and as it streamed up my arms and into my body, my heart seemed to need less energy to pump my blood.

I initially routed the power he gifted me to my first two chakras, since I primarily pull from those for my weapon, and then filled the rest. He truly does have plenty, but I never want to get used to depending on him.

During the few minutes Aaron’s energy filled me, I was at one with everything around me — totally at peace with the world, the universe, and perhaps even God. All energy is magic, but Aaron’s is a special kind of magic.

If we were romantically compatible, I’d be madly in love with him, but since we aren’t, he’s one of my best friends. I love him, but it isn’t the girlfriend kind of love.

When I was as full as I could get without feeling pain, I gently let go of his hands. When we do this as an exercise and he’s expanding the volume I can hold, he forces it in long past when I would choose to let go. This hurts about as much as I imagine a lightning strike would, and there’s a lot of screaming and crying involved on my part. I hate acting like a girly-girl, but he assures me he screamed and begged when his reserves were being stretched, too. Of course, that was thousands of years ago, so who could say how much he remembered of the pain?

Today, though, I felt warm and full and loved.

“Thanks,” I told him. Words couldn’t adequately thank him, so the single word would have to do. Besides, we were still on our mission and needed to focus, so I asked, “Do we circle back around and try the mystery cave, or try my idea?” I already knew venturing into the unknown cave wasn’t an option, but hoped he’d consider my Plan B. Aaron hadn’t liked it when I’d proposed it a few hours earlier, but we were running out of options.

He lifted his chin in agreement but showed no emotion. Aaron Drake totally rocks bad-ass. “Let’s pull Nathan in to help,” he answered. “I’m not comfortable using you as human bait with just me as your backup.”

I nodded and leaned against a tree, closed my eyes, and made Aaron’s energy my own while he texted Nathan our coordinates. Nathan wasn’t too far away, but was acting as lookout and would need to put someone in his spot before joining us.

We knew women were being kidnapped and taken to these woods just outside the boundaries of Prentice Cooper State Forest. Aaron is a weredragon and has an exceptionally good sense of smell, which had helped him find the women’s scents, but the trail had ended around ten feet from the cave’s entrance. I’d found narrow wheel marks leading towards the cave, and Aaron scented a few non-human male scents in the same area. Aaron couldn’t identify the species of the non-humans by smell, and wasn’t sure about them now that he’d seen one of them, either.

I theorized they might be putting the women into some sort of cart to get them into the cave, but Aaron didn’t want to go in without knowing what we were walking into. I understood the logic, even if it frustrated me. Still, Aaron was thousands of years old and hadn’t made it this far by being stupid, so I generally listened to his advice. Not always, but usually.

My Plan B had been to send me into the staging area as a bumbling, helpless female making a lot of noise, and hope someone showed up so Aaron could interrogate them and find out what was going on.

However, if we happened upon more of whatever we’d been fighting earlier, I wasn’t sure how we’d question it. Aaron and Nathan in human form and working together could probably subdue one of the creatures, but if more appeared they’d likely be forced to shift into their animal forms. Not a problem for Nathan, who shifted into a lion, but Aaron’s gigantic dragon form was hard to hide, as he tended to knock trees down and create a huge disturbance even when he didn’t take flight. He might’ve gotten away with it a hundred years ago, but with practically every American owning a camera phone today, he wouldn’t risk it.

The creature I’d killed had looked like an amalgamation of goat, ape, and the Incredible Hulk — minus the green. It’d been tan and brown, with long curved horns and vertical slitted eyes with flaming red irises where they should’ve been black. Creepy was an understatement, and he’d scared the bejeebers out of me even before I knew he was almost too much for Aaron to take on in human form.

As a human who can’t magically heal like the shapeshifters, I only use my metaphysical laser to kill from a distance. Attempting to wound a powerful supernatural creature would likely only get me killed, once they saw I was a serious danger. I could cut limbs off with my laser, or deliver a kill shot, but couldn’t do much else. However, we’d need to capture the next one so it could be questioned, which meant I could only act if I thought there was no other choice.

I was full of energy now though, and if I portioned it out I could probably kill two with what Aaron had given me.

Nathan, as always, startled me when he appeared in front of me. He walks as quietly in human form as when he’s a lion, and he’s just as ill-behaved, arrogant, and stubborn as any grumpy house-cat, so we didn’t exactly get along. I trusted him with my life on a mission, I just didn’t like being around him. Too bad he’s gorgeous.

Ignoring the fact he’d startled me, I told the men, “I need to hand off my gun and mags to one of you. The goat monsters will probably be able to smell them, and I’ll lose my helpless female vibe.”

Nathan held his hand out, choosing to remain nonverbal as usual when around me. I held my tongue, pulled my nine millimeter from the bellyband and handed it off, then the three extra magazines. He put my weapon in a zippered pocket on the side of his thigh, and slid my mags into slots on the inside of his military style tech-vest.

No matter how much of an ass he might be, he’s still built like my ideal man and I always have to work to keep from lusting after his more-than-perfect human body. He can smell emotions and physical reactions, and I endeavored to give him nothing. It was more likely he didn’t care what I thought or felt, but just in case he did, I wanted to keep as much feedback from him as possible.

We were about a half mile from the staging area Aaron had found, and I started walking to it, knowing Aaron would map out a plan with Nathan and they’d both be in position long before I arrived.

Walking away from them, through the woods, towards danger without my gun was terrifying, but I breathed through my fear and tried to keep my physiological reactions to a minimum. Both for my own pride, to keep Aaron and Nathan from smelling my fear, but also because it wouldn’t do for the goat-people to know I was terrified before I saw them. A lost human can be expected to smell a little scared, but not out-of-her-mind frightened.


About the Author: 
FBgroup
Chris Stoneheart lives in a fifty-year-old house smack dab in the middle of The South, with what promises to soon be a full-fledged herd of retired racing greyhounds. Chris read The Hobbit in elementary school, and The Lord of the Rings in middle school, and has been addicted to fantasy ever since. (It’s probably best we don’t talk about what Chris read in high school.)

Chronicles of the Light gives us a world where weredragons, werewolves, werelions, three different species of vampires, and a variety of other mythological beings exist.

Stay up to date on new releases by joining Chris’s mailing list at http://eepurl.com/gcNe7v

ARE YOU STALKING ME? You should be! Come find me!

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Angel Bonds (Immortal Curse Book 6) by Lexi C. Foss

Angel Bonds (Immortal Curse Book 6)
by Lexi C. Foss
April 1, 2019
386 pages
Death courts Astasiya Davenport at every turn.
Dark fates lurk in the shadows of the night.
And a prophecy looms unbidden on the horizon.

With her future in shambles, she leans on Issac Wakefield for his love and support. They crave just one more moment together, one more night, until a massacre destroys everything in their path.

Will their relationship perish in the embers of destruction, or will love persevere?

Kingdoms will fall.
New powers will emerge.
And a Seraphim will rise from the ashes of despair.

An immortal war is on the horizon.
Death will reign.
The endgame begins now.


Immortal Curse series: Books 1-3 
by Lexi C Foss
June 30, 2018
1013 pages
Genre: Paranormal Romance

Welcome to a world of cursed immortals, broken rules and eternal love…

Welcome to a world of cursed immortals, broken rules, and eternal love...

╰☆☆ Blood Laws ☆☆╮
The lines between illusion and reality blur as a dark romance brews between two unlikely soulmates.

╰☆☆ Forbidden Bonds ☆☆╮
Can two tortured souls find solace and love in one another?

╰☆☆ Blood Heart ☆☆╮
An immortal war is brewing, and she's the key...





by Lexi C. Foss
April 23, 2019
892 pages
Welcome to a world of cursed immortals, broken rules, and eternal love...

╰☆☆ Elder Bonds ☆☆╮

"A well-rounded introduction to the Immortal Curse world and the brilliance of those who live there." -Lucian

╰☆☆ Blood Bonds ☆☆╮
How far will Caro and Sethios go to protect their destiny and the fate of their unborn child? 

╰☆☆ Angel Bonds ☆☆╮
An immortal war is on the horizon.
Death will reign.
The endgame begins now.


About the Author:
Lexi C. Foss is an award winning and bestselling author of paranormal romance. She loves complex plots, twists and turns, and writing fantasy with strong, realistic elements. Many of her readers comment on how her worlds feel real, and she not-so-secretly wishes they were—at least some of them.
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Saturday, April 27, 2019

Comic Review: Zodiac #3 (3 issue series) from Zenoscope


Writer: Joe Brusha
Artwork: Daniel Mainé
Colors: Jorge Cortes
Letters: Taylor Esposito (of Ghost Glyph Studios)
April 24, 2019
As the War of the Grail wages, Merlin the Magician looks to give himself an advantage by using his deadliest assassin of all time to eliminate his biggest threats in the Order of Tarot. Logan Patrick O’Connell spent his adult life ridding the streets of drugs using his own deadly methods until a mistake drove him from his home in Belfast, Ireland. Once O’Connell met Merlin, his life was forever changed and he began on the path to vengeance. Thus, Zodiac was born.




Zodiac #3 (of 3)
Writer: Joe Brusha
Artwork: Daniel Mainé
Colors: Jorge Cortes
Letters: Taylor Esposito (of Ghost Glyph Studios)
Editor: Chion & Design: Christopher Cote
Zodiac has come to the Big Easy under orders from his master, Merlin the Magician, to eliminate targets from the Order of Tarot. But along the way he’s been haunted by memories of his past and the death of his sister at the hands of a drug addict. With Tarot using the drug trade to fuel their operations and corrupt humans at the same time the, mission has now become personal for Zodiac and he will stop at nothing to destroy Tarot’s operation, even if that means burning the entire city to the ground.


Zenoscope comics have some amazing artwork. It is bold, it is beautiful, it is full of boobs! Yes, you read that right. Zenoscope is famous for its kick-butt (emphasis on the butts) buxom females. That doesn't really appeal to me. So when I saw the covers for the 3 issue series Zodiac I did a double take. Is that a sexy kick-butt man on the cover? Yes, it is...and I was all over it.

I love the premise of the story. Merlin (yeah, that Merlin) turns vigilante Logan Patrick O’Connell (Yes, he is Irish) into his personal assassin against the Order of the Tarot. Unfortunately, I discovered the Zodiac series at issue #3, the last issue of this arc. But I wish I had started from issue #1 cause I really liked Zodiac. It is the comic version of my favorite movie genre. Blow'em up action. Zodiac would probably make a pretty good movie...as long as there's a cheese factor.
If you are a fan of the typical Zenoscope comics you are still in luck! There are BBBB (butts, boobs, beautiful, bold) variant covers with women on them. And Zodiac issue #3 has the sexy Tarot bad girl, The Devil. Complete with horns and a tail.

Here is a variant cover of issue #3...

4 "BBBB" Sheep!



SharonS

Friday, April 26, 2019

Selah's Manga Mania Reviews: Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle, Vol.1 by Kagiji Kumanomata


Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle, Vol. 1 
by Kagiji Kumanomata 
June 12, 2018-
176 pages
Genres: Slice of life, fantasy, comedy, supernatural
Shounen
Volumes: 8 (ongoing)
A captured princess just wants a good night’s sleep!

Imprisoned in the castle of the Demon King, all spoiled-sweet Princess Syalis dreams of is a good night’s sleep! Shhh...

Kidnapped by the Demon King and imprisoned in his castle, Princess Syalis is…bored.

She decides to while away the hours by sleeping, but getting a good night’s rest turns out to be a lot of work! She begins by fashioning a DIY pillow out of the fur of her Teddy Demon guards and an “air mattress” from the magical Shield of the Wind. The princess’s hapless demonic guards soon discover that their captive expects to be treated like, well, a princess. Things go from bad to worse—for her captors—when some of Princess Syalis’s schemes end in her untimely—if temporary—demise and she chooses the Forbidden Grimoire for her bedtime reading…

I love manga because sometimes I find a title that speaks to me on a cellular level, a title that fundamentally gets who I am.

So today we’re taking a look at Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle. 
Obviously, this is my unofficial biography. 
The humans and demons (in this case think fantasy-type monsters of varying degrees) are at war and the demons kidnap Princess Syalis to have an upper hand. The princess could care less. She's only put out by the fact that it’s SO HARD to sleep well in the Demon Castle, you guys. So, she becomes a master at jail breaks...but only to get herself more personal comfort. Add in things like teddy bear demons, her making bedding from ghost shrouds, her accidentally dying a few times (she really puts the cleric through a lot), and I just...it’s hysterical. Syalis is so unaware of anything but her goal, and the demons just do not know how to take her.
The good: This is a cute, witty, hilarious read. All four volumes I've seen do not disappoint. What could be a tired gag is kept fresh from chapter to chapter, and there's some nice slow character work done. By volume four Syalis is starting to kinda have an inkling beyond her selfish whims (but not enough to detract from who she is) and the demons (even the king) realize they kinda don't want her to leave. There's also some nice comparison to game play, and the king always tries to give the hero who’s trying to rescue Syalis a fair chance (and it’s usually ruined by Syalis, herself). It’s a title that knows what it is and is comfortable sticking to what it does best.
The bad: For me, nothing. I could see if a reader wants something with a faster arc of a more serious narrative this may not work, but I love this take on the fantasy genre. Like anything else, some bits work better than others, but nothing feels slow or ineffective to me. 
The ick: Nothing overt or in your face. There are some pretty blatant innuendo and misunderstandings (the king misreads her request to hit her pressure points as seduction at one point), do this is probably a teen and up title. I find it all pretty hilarious, and there’s nothing graphic.

All in all, one of my favorite newer titles.

4.5 sheep





About the Author:
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Selah Janel is a writer who is trying to start doing that again instead of reading manga all the time.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Spotlight: Unholy Ground (Project Demon Hunters Book 3) by Christine Pope


Unholy Ground (Project Demon Hunters Book 3)by Christine Pope
April 17th, 2019
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Cover Designer: Christian Bentulan (Covers by Christian)
Editor: Katherine Tomlinson, Story Authority
Publisher: Dark Valentine Press
Hosted by: Lady Amber's PR
Facing the darkness is their only way back to the light.

After a horrible accident while filming the third episode of Project Demon Hunters, Audrey Barrett can’t get the if onlys out of her head. If only she hadn’t tried to play hero. If only she’d stayed out of the way. In the end, Michael sent the demon in question back to hell…but at a terrible cost.

The cable network has pulled the plug on the show, and they’re all out of a job. Now there’s nothing left to do but tie up loose ends. At least Audrey still has Michael, alive and by her side. But those loose ends are a clear sign — gouged deep in oak — that the demon who’s been making their lives miserable isn’t through with them after all.

They have no choice but to confront evil on its own ground. But if they can’t pin a name on this demon, nothing will save them…not even an ocean of holy water.



About the Author:
goodreads
USA Today bestseller Christine Pope is the author of the paranormal romance Witches of Cleopatra Hill series and the Djinn Wars series, among many other books (sixty and counting!). Researching UFOs brought her to magical Sedona, Arizona, where she now makes her home. Find out more about her books at christinepope.com.





Wednesday, April 24, 2019

COVER REVEAL: Finding Faith (A Dragon's Fated Heart Book #2) by Beverly Ovalle

Finding Faith (A Dragon's Fated Heart Book #2)
by Beverly Ovalle
May 7, 2019
The apocalypse had been and gone.

Those left banded together for survival, creating safety from the chaos.

They succeeded.

Faith wanted more, she wanted to live, to love, fly free. More than survival, Faith craved adventure. Leaving home, seeking a new life, all that ceased when she witnessed her sister being abducted-by dragons, creatures shrouded in myth. Determined to rescue her, Faith begins an adventure she never wants to end.

Dragon shifter Crag follows his heart, hunting for his fated mate. Once he finds her, Crag is determined to keep her safe, from all threats. Admitting he is a dragon shifter and involved in her sister’s kidnapping may be the end of them.

Until the interference of a race of dragons desperate for survival grasps their only chance, stealing Faith and drawing Crag along to save her.

by Beverly Ovalle
February 11, 2017
252 pages
The apocalypse has come and gone. 

Those who survived learned to adapt. 
Dragons awaken to once again reign over the skies. 

Upon eruption of a volcano, Ari awakens to a changed world, and a knowing that his dragon's mate is near. He saves her twice—once as a dragon, and again as a man—and wins her confidence. 

Hope cried out, moaning, “just change me with pleasure?” 

Hope is restless and unfulfilled until she meets Ari, the man of her fantasies. The sensual tension between them heightens with every touch. When their passion explodes, Hope gets pulled into the dragon's mating ritual...and into a world of erotic sensation she never dreamed existed but now cannot live without. The dragon binds his mate to him with a ritual that shows Hope her true nature in this humorous erotic romance.


About the Author:
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Beverly Ovalle dabbled with writing on and off for years when her best friend finally dared her to submit a story to a writing contest. Beverly decided she had nothing to lose and since she'd always wanted to be an author sent it in and agonized for months waiting to hear back. Contract in hand she has never looked back.

Pre-order: Of Shadow and Light by Ebony Olson



Of Shadow and Light 
by Ebony Olson
May 1st 2019
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance
She will be the one to take his coldness,
She will unveil the Unseelie darkness and show them light.
She will unite what should never have broken.
The daughter of the moon will teach him love and the radiance of the sun.
Her inner light will purify the tainted ones,
And she will guide the fey by wisp-light.

‘Prophecy of the Dark Prince’

Messina Doe was just looking for a warm place to spend the night. What she discovers is a place the human race had long ago buried and forgotten.

The dark Fey haven’t forgotten humans. The throne room of the Unseelie court is the hottest underground nightclub around, but if you step through the wrong door, there is no going back.

No one ever escapes. Never.

Once, someone did.







About the Author:
Ebony lives in Sydney, Australia, with her husband, daughter, and six cats. She loves to read fantasy, thrillers, and paranormal romance, spending most of her free time with her nose in a book or writing.
Having always possessed an over-active imagination she spent her younger years regaling friends with fantastic stories, holding her audience captive with the passion and suspense of her character's plights.


Now in adulthood, she has numerous published works and shows no signs of stopping her imagination from spreading across as many pages as it can find.

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