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Friday, July 31, 2020

Excerpt: Crow: A dark romance (The Crow Series Book 1) by Amanda Mackey + giveaway

Crow: A dark romance (The Crow Series Book 1)
by Amanda Mackey
July 22, 2020
Genre: Dark Romance, romantic suspense

I'm the Grim Reaper

My face is the last thing my victims see

I take life without blinking

Bred this way by the devil himself

The asshole who raised me

When the time comes, I'll bury him too

In the meantime, the little starling feeding the birds in the park has my full attention.

Raven colored hair

Disarming eyes that infuse my dead heart with oxygen

The broken pieces of me want her to put me back together

But the monster is calling to come out and play.

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star....

Crow: I stand in darkness. I am the darkness. The maroon, velvet drapes are pulled tightly closed, shutting out the world as I attempt to quiet my mind. Visions stole time again last night, robbing me of sleep. The monster lurking. Always there. Voices like background noise never leave. Pain so deep, nightmares constantly speak to me.

My dedicated martial arts room failed to pacify me this morning after a grueling workout with knives and swords. I need more. A kick of pain greater than my bare limbs can provide.

Using the straight edge of my trusted friend, I slice the final letter into the skin on my torso, making sure it’s back to front
 so when read by another, it will make sense. The smell of sweet metal a hit to my senses. Heady. Intoxicating. I feel the upward and downward strokes, not needing to see. The sharp tip stops its journey and I let the knife drop to the floor, sated. I allow my fingers to brush across the wound, gathering the red nectar and placing it to my parched lips. The workout has left me dehydrated so when I swallow and allow the fine liquid to coat my throat, I let out a groan of relief.

My body is a work of art. Ink covering half of it. This new tattoo is another piece to the puzzle.

The bright lights shooting like laser beams through the cross-barred windows have me squinting. The ornate gold mirror to my right, allows me to view the masterpiece. With my chest bare and a pair of sweats hanging under my hip bones, I grin broadly.

It’s complete. I’m branded. I finally have a name. An identity even he can’t steal from me.

Aria: My throat closes and I feel my entire face stretch in surprise as a dark figure steps from the shadows. A gray hoodie is pulled down over his face, revealing only a glimpse. It’s enough to discover a full mouth surrounded by scruff. His jeans and combat boots don’t tell me much about who he is. Snippets of tattoos peak out from under his clothing, imparting a thug-like appearance. If I were someone who judged, I’d have him summed up already, but I know all too well, appearances can be deceiving.

The air changes. His vibe is one of power. Rigid stance. Confident gait. I feel frazzled.

I stand and take a deep breath, attempting to pull my newfound anxiety back in. He stops. I’m not sure what to say or do as we both inspect each other, although I can’t be sure he’s watching me as his eyes are cloaked in the shade of his hoodie. It’s something I feel more than I know.

“Hi there,” I begin, attempting to be friendly.

He does a short, crisp whistle and my newest feathered friend retreats back to the stranger before the giant of a man, leans down and picks up the crow, placing him on his shoulder.

“Oh. It’s your bird. I didn’t know. I hope you don’t mind me feeding him.”

His body language is cold and standoffish. His hands are pressed against thick thighs. I feel vulnerable, him being able to see my face but me not being able to see his.

I wait for a response but receive nothing. He simply freezes.

Beginning to feel more uneasy, I turn and offer a small wave with, “Well, I’ll see you. I need to get to work.”

I hurry away, leaving the other birds on the grass as I turn back once to see him still facing me. Odd man.
About the Author: 
Amanda Mackey was born in New Zealand and moved to Australia when she was 12 years old with her family, where she has lived ever since. She has loved books since an early age and is an avid reader. This has helped lay the foundation for her writing. She's published 7 novels to date with plenty more on the way. An author with Limitless Publishing, she loves to spend time with family when she's not writing or reading.

Amanda hopes to make writing her full time career and travel in the near future. 

Follow the tour HERE for special content and a giveaway!

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Thursday, July 30, 2020

LOL, sheep humor

This just killed me...thanks to BrendaR and ChristinaMc for sharing this in the I Smell Sheep Facebook group!

Whaaaa?! You didn't know we had a FB group... We share our website posts, free/cheap books, and members can post any pop culture info or funny memes that other members would enjoy...we don't allow promo unless it has been cleared through us first and then only if we think it is something members would like to see.
Come on...join us.

Cover Reveal: Awaken the Three (Highglade #2) by D. Jennings

If you haven't heard about the Highglade Series yet, check out the cover for Awaken the Three by D. L. Jennings, a must read for Fantasy lovers who love imaginative new worlds and epic adventures! 

Awaken the Three (Highglade #2)
by D. Jennings
August 11, 2020
546 pages
Genre: Fantasy 
Finalist: 2020 Next Generation Indie Book Awards (Category: Fantasy)

Beyond the Wastes of Khulakorum, a storm is rising . . .

The Shaper of Ages is gone, and along with her, the Breaker -- yet gods are not the only threat to the peace of the living.

Aldis Tennech, the once-great general of the armies of Gal'dorok, finds himself in exile. His only hope of reclaiming glory lies in the hands of a self-proclaimed emperor, and the unearthly powers that put him there. Meanwhile, improbable alliances are forged in the north as unexpected enemies rear their heads and threaten ruin-with a single thread in common, connecting them all.

In the sequel to his award-winning novel Gift of the Shaper, D. L. Jennings once again brings to life an epic tale of war and chaos as earthly armies fight for otherworldly prizes. Ancient powers lying dormant must be called upon, bringing strength to those who need it and conquest to those who seek it; battles will rage and cities will fall, but only the most desperate or reckless would seek . . .

. . . to awaken the three.

by D. Jennings
December 7th 2018 
470 pages
Armies will clash, and even gods will die…

For thousands of years, the Breaker of the Dawn has been locked away in the ethereal plane of the Otherworld. Now, a young blacksmith’s apprentice finds himself trapped in a war between the noble Athrani, a subset of humanity gifted with the ability to transmute matter, and the malevolent and powerful Khyth, who seek to free the ancient god from his prison.

When his father, Olson, is kidnapped, Thornton Woods and his childhood friend, Miera, must leave their small village of Highglade to find him. On their way, they are joined by Ynara and Kethras, cat-like humanoids called Kienari, who use their skills as hunter/trackers to follow Olson’s trail. When it comes to light that one among them possesses the key to the Breaker’s release, Thornton and his friends must defy the might of the Khyth as armies on both sides collide in pursuit of the ultimate prize.

Gift of the Shaper chronicles the epic struggle between the existing forces of good and evil, with both sides vying for control of the key that unlocks the Otherworld. The very powers of creation and destruction hang in the balance, and only a heroic effort by Thornton and Miera, backed by the power of the Athrani, can possibly stop the Khyth from unleashing ruin — and the Breaker — upon their world.

About the Author:
Once again, D. L. Jennings, who won the “Beverly Hills Award for Fantasy” in 2018, brings life to an epic tale of war and chaos as earthly armies fight for otherworldly prizes. Reminiscent of Game of Thrones, AWAKEN THE THREE is a riveting page-turner, and a must-read for fantasy readers who want to escape to a different world, time and place ruled by other-worldly beings. It’s the perfect book to escape from the anxious times of our COVID-19 reality. 

D. L. Jennings is a fourteen-year active-duty veteran of the United States Air Force, serving under the Air Force Special Operations Command. In 2005, he earned his associate degree after graduating at the top of his Korean class at the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center in Monterey, California, and earning the Korean Consul General’s award for excellence. He is a graduate of Bellevue University in Nebraska, earning a bachelor of science degree in security management in 2008. He finished writing his debut novel, GIFT OF THE SHAPER, which won the Beverly Hills Book Award in 2018 for Fantasy, while serving on his ninth combat tour. 

He has been deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan as well as several countries in Africa. When he is not reading or writing epic fantasy, he enjoys traveling, listening to ‘90s punk, and watching Ohio State football. Jennings lives in South Florida.

Cover Reveal Organized By:

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Cover Reveal: The Lost King by Frazier Alexander

The Lost King
by Frazier Alexander
November 10th 2020
FyreSyde Publishing
Genres: Adult, Fantasy
In an ancient place, in an ancient time…

King Athan vanishes at sea. His children, prince Thalos and princess Thara, drift apart with age, their kingdom falling into ruin. Thalos stubbornly clings to the past; Thara, resentful of her father, looks to the future. In the wake of this decline, a beautiful enchantress usurps the throne from the estranged siblings. She exiles Thalos to the edge of the world and slowly enslaves Thara’s mind.

In his exile, Thalos finds another castaway—an old comrade of his father. Together they begin a voyage in search of the lost king. Thara, meanwhile, resists the new queen’s coercive spells and finds a resistance of creatures still loyal to her father.

With a vast world of enchanted islands and beings between them, Thalos and Thara struggle to restore their family and rekindle the hope of the true king’s return.

About the Author:
Along with creating his own mythological backdrop for his stories, Frazier is an amateur calligrapher, map-maker, and artist. He is currently working on his master’s in Medieval Literature at the University of North Texas.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Among Gods (Gods and Daemons Book 1) by Quinn Blackbird + giveaway

Among Gods (Gods and Daemons Book 1)
by Quinn Blackbird
July 9, 2020
167 pages
Genre: Dark Paranormal Romance 
Living in the God’s city among monsters is hard enough. But for Keela, a young woman forever on the edge of death from a mysterious illness that has plagued her since birth, each day she’s ever known is a fight.

Keela yearns for simple things. Marriage, a man to love and care for her, and some pretty dresses—until an ancient and cold aniel plucks her out of the masses to be the object of his deadly favour, and the Daemons come to the city for the first time in centuries.

Now, Keela really learns what it means to truly fight for her life in a city of monsters.

A dark fantasy mini-series set in Quinn Blackbird’s GODS AND MONSTERS world. You do not have to read Gods and Monsters before reading Gods and Daemons.
**Only .99 cents!** 

Among Aniels (Gods and Daemons Book 2)

***Coming Soon!*** 
Among Monsters - Among Shadows 
Gods and Daemons Book 3 Gods and Daemons Book 4 

About the Author:

Quinn Blackbird loves a good anti-hero.

All of her villains stay submerged in 'dark' so expect little redemption. She thinks them up over hot coffees and warm cups of tea on the porch.

When not writing, Quinn loves a good face mask and book on the couch with her two pups.

$10 Amazon Gift Card 
Follow the tour HERE for special content and a giveaway! 

Monday, July 27, 2020

UF Author Niki McAlister: What the heck is a naga, anyway? + excerpt

What the heck is a naga, anyway? 
An informative interview featuring Djinn (a bonafide naga,) Tiki (Our faceless assistant,) and Niki McAlister herself!

Niki: Welcome everyone to this up close and personal....interview/TED talk about what a naga is, at least on the continent of Iruli. With us today is my faithful, faceless assistant-bot Tiki! Say hello, Tiki!

Tiki: ~waves nervously~

Niki: Awesome! I'm so excited to show you what we have today. Tiki, will you bring him out for me?

Tiki: ~drags a rather grouchy, hungover Djinn into view of the camera~

Djinn: Ugh, what the hell is this? Where am I?

Niki: Don't worry too much about it. Hop up onto the table and we'll have you on your way in no time!

Djinn: ~shrugs and lays down on the large, metal table that's totally been there this entire time.~

Niki: At their very core, a naga is half human and half snake. That is to say that the upper half closely resembles a human and from the waist down they are all snake.

Djinn: Hey now, that's not entirely true. ~he runs his hand across the thick scales covering his genitals~ I'm all man here baby.

Niki: Thank you for that wonderful imagery, Djinn. ~facepalm~

Tiki: ~swats Djinn's hand from his crotch, chastising him with one finger~

Niki: Now, I said they closely resemble humans up top, but in reality, humans in Iruli are long gone. This is because-

Djinn: ~interrupting~ It's because they couldn't keep their junk to themselves! They screwed their way across an entire continent, spreading their seed on, in and around any creature that gave them the time of day.

Niki: ~chuckling nervously~ yeah...that. Humans were gross, but it's okay because they're extinct now! Yay! Let's get a closer look at a real, live naga...shall we? Tiki, restrain our friend!

Tiki: ~grabs Djinn's head and holds it down against the table~

Djinn: What the hell? What are you doing? Get your hands off me!

Niki: You'll notice that nagas have varying shapes to their ears, for starters. Some are more round, some are more pointed, and some have fine scaling across them. Djinn here has horns too, see how they curl around his ear and slope gently down toward his shoulders? Naga horns are as varied as their ears, noses, eyes, and pretty much everything else. They serve little to no purpose anymore as they are mostly leftover from back when nagas were actual dragons.

Djinn: Rude.

Niki: Tiki, let's see them chompers!

Tiki: ~uses two fingers from each hand to yank Djinn's mouth open, holding him down on the table with superhuman strength~

Niki: Now, you'll see that nagas are omnivores. They eat whatever they like so their teeth are much like ours, with one big exception. Djinn is a Python, so he doesn't have fangs but several clans of the naga species like the Rattler or the Cobra are born with fangs that allow them to produce venom. Basilisks also have a pair of glands under their tongue that secrete a type of toxin that is known to paralyze their prey, though these days they hardly have to hunt for their food. Let's move on to the body.

Tiki: ~releases Djinn's mouth~

Djinn: ~snaps his teeth at Tiki's fingers but gets no rise out of her. Frowns~

Niki: Djinn has dark skin, just like some humans do. It's important to note that unlike our society, skin color means literally nothing in the naga world—just like tail color. This is largely due to the fact that nagas, like most of the creatures on Iruli, are heavily interbred with other species to the point that they have so many genetic options packed into their DNA that even siblings from the same clutch come out wildly varied. For example, Djinn's brother Junard is white-skinned, but with a red tail. Djinn is dark-skinned with an olive green, almost anaconda type coloration with similar patterning. The only thing that really sets nagas apart is heritage, they can be a bit of a snob in that respect.

Djinn: Not all of us! I couldn't care less about my “heritage.”

Niki: ~nods~ My bad, thank you for correcting me. So because Djinn is a Python he's inherited a very special ability from his father. It's a big part of his identity and has allowed him to schmooze his way across the naga kingdom his entire life, just like his father—who uses his power to sway the votes of the council in his favor.

Tiki: ~lifts one of Djinn's arms to reveal his armpit with a flourish of her hand~

Djinn: ~averts his eyes in annoyance~

Niki: I won't be able to show it without a microscope, but Pythons have retained specialized scent glands throughout their bodies. Back in the old days when dragons terrorized the landscape, they lacked the ability to communicate with the common tongue. Instead, they would communicate with scenting, similar to dogs and cats when they poop except that it's an invisible I guess it's closer to body odor than poop...

Djinn: You think?

Niki: ~clears throat~ This ability is referred to as a Pheromone. Each naga that can produce a Pheromone has a unique scent that might even smell different to different people. It cannot be bottled or used by anyone other than the creator of the scent themselves. It works by tapping into the emotions the naga is feeling and coercing the minds of whoever is inhaling it. As you can imagine this ability is rather dubious as it allows the naga greater power over their fellow naga. It is important to note that most other nagas have developed an immunity to this ability over time, but the elves, centaurs, dragons and anyone else who isn't constantly around it have not. Specialized abilities like Pheromone are just one of the things that makes nagas so unique. Well, that and their tails. Tiki! Show them the tail!

Tiki: ~flourishes hand over the tail unceremoniously~

Niki: ~grips the podium in frustration~ can see here, this is a naga tail. It's basically a supersized version of a snake's body. Naga's range in size from about six feet in length to over twenty feet in length depending on their clan, and that's from the top of the head to the tip of the tail. Most of them have the ability to control the thinner end of the tail pretty prehensile-ly, yes that's a word, no I didn't make it up. ~flips through note cards~ Their genitalia are stored in a built-in pouch located just below the waist that is covered in thick, protective scales.

Djinn: Is this where I whip it out?

Niki: No, we're not whipping anything out here...

Djinn: You sure? I'm sure the audience hasn't seen anything like it before.

Niki: ~shoots him a look~ If the audience wants to know what it looks like they can buy the book. No spoilers!

Djinn: ~dejected~ Fiiine.

Niki: That's pretty much it folks. Thank you for coming to my TED talk, you've been great.

A voice from the crowd rings out: But wait, you haven't told us how they poop!

~Audience members murmur in agreeance.~

Niki: Do I really have to?

Djinn: ~nods solemnly~

Tiki: ~shrugs~

Niki: ~runs hand over face~ Yall couldn't just google how snakes poop?


Niki: ~sigh~ Fine. There's a slit near the end of the tail where the poop comes out, but they don't poop often at all, maybe like once a week. Their bodies have evolved to absorb pretty much everything from their food. Satisfied?

~Murmuring grows louder~

Niki: Alright! Now that I'm sure you've got plenty to discuss I'll be going. For more information about Djinn please check out his standalone prequel story which is available for preorder now! 

Djinn (Serving the Scales Prequel)
by Niki McAlister
August 1, 2020
Genre: Adult Fantasy
Number of pages: 132
Word Count: 45,690
Cover Artist: Niki McAlister

From Silver Spoon to Silver Tongue
Born into a wealthy family on the west side of the Naga Kingdom, Djinn De’monte has always lived a life of undeserved luxury. He parties every night courtesy of his father’s money and, with a flick of his hand, can bed any woman he chooses.

Why would he ever give any of that up to settle down and work a regular job? Everything he needs is right at his fingertips, but when an unexpected tragedy strikes the rug is suddenly yanked out from under him. Djinn is forced to sink or swim.

Join him on his forced pilgrimage as he reluctantly discovers that there is more to life than having everything served to you on a silver platter. Will he learn just what he stands for, or will he be swept up with the rest of the garbage?

In this short prequel we travel back to Djinn’s youth to find out exactly what transpired before he met a very unusual servant girl. This story can be read before Serving the Scales, after, or by itself. Though Djinn’s story isn’t part of the Serving the Scales Trilogy, it is an important part of the history that took place in Iruli.

“You can’t go in there right now, he’s in a meeting!” The butler elf cried, trying to insert himself between me and the double doors of my father’s office. I slapped him aside with a brush of my tail, sending him clattering into the wall. As he sputtered in surprise I threw open the doors, my faded green locks whipping in the artificial breeze as I met my father’s deadpan stare.

“Djinn, now isn’t a good time.” He said, dismissing me with his hand but I would have none of it.

“Are you directly responsible for the suffering of countless pregnant women and children?” I seethed, glaring directly into my father’s eyes.

“Djinn..” Dad’s face was blank as I heard someone clear their throat to my left.

Councilman Wartez was seated on a cushion there, looking up at me in disapproval—but I didn’t care. “Well? Are you?” I repeated.

“Djinn if you could come back later I’d be happy to—”

“No, we’re going to talk about this now dad.” I huffed, raising my tail to tower over him.

Dad sighed. “Where are you hearing this from? Is this about Jess? I assure you she received the best care.”

“Why aren’t all of the pregnant nagas in the East city receiving that type of care? Are you aware that they’re being treated on the damp ground?”

“Surely those people must be used to doing things on the damp ground.” Councilman Wartez snickered beside me.

“Are you fucking with me right now?” I spun around to the councilman. “People are dying and you’re over here making jokes? Why isn’t the council doing anything to help?”

Dad glared up at me through his tiny glasses. “Not that you’ve ever cared before, but we’ve been conducting tests on the female naga’s issue for decades. We’ve informed everyone that, should they find themselves pregnant they should seek proper medical care.”

I slammed my hands down on his desk, remembering all the times he’d had the maid whip me for touching his desk. His eye twitched as he looked down at my hands. “You do realize that most of the citizens in the East city can’t afford to see a doctor, right?”

“That’s being quite presumptuous. I’ll have you know that we installed Deklyn over there to care for the elves ten years ago. They’re being cared for better than they ever did in that backwoods place they hail from.”

“You know damn well I’m not talking about the elves.” I seethed.

He shrugged, making my blood boil. “You and your council buddies could easily extend a hand to these women but you’re not!”

“That’s enough Djinn.” Dad rose, grabbing my hand and pulling it off his desk.

“It’s not nearly enough dad.”

“I must ask you to go home and we’ll discuss this at another time.”

“Fuck you.” I spat. “You’ll just send Natasha over with more money or a fucking fruit basket to shut me up, you bastard.”

“That’s enough!” Dad boomed, coming around the side of his desk. “One more word out of you and I’ll cut you off.”

“I dare you.” I grinned, spitting on the ground in front of him. I raised my gaze back to his face to relish in the shock I’d caused but to my surprise I felt my father’s fist collide with my cheek as he snarled at me. I flew backward, hitting my head on the back wall of the office and pulling down a bunch of books as I slumped to the ground.

“I’m sorry for this outburst Councilman Wartez.” Reginald was saying, shaking the councilman's hand. The last thing I remembered was both of the councilmen looking over at me in amusement as I passed out.

About the Author:
Niki McAlister is new to the author scene, but don't let that stop you from checking her out. She's spent twenty-nine years dreaming up entire universes with fantastical creatures and now she's bringing their stories to you. In the real world she resides in Eastern Tennessee with her husband and two boys. Their family also consists of several dogs, cats, gerbils, degus and pet snails.

All I Ever Wanted (Forbidden Love Series Book 1) by RHAYNE + giveaway

All I Ever Wanted (Forbidden Love Series Book 1)
August 21, 2017
208 pages
Genre: African American Urban Fiction, Contemporary Romance
McKenzie Taylor worked hard building his successful architecture business from the ground up. Now, after five years of marriage, he is ready to start a family.

Sharon, his wife, feels neglected and doesn't agree with him. She feels that a child would only complicate things. After all, if McKenzie doesn't have time for her, how will he be there for his child?

Feeling lonely and craving attention, Sharon confides in Byron Jefferson, one of McKenzie's clients. He seems perfect, giving her all the attention, she’s been longing for in her marriage. But is the grass really greener on the other side?

As McKenzie struggles to make things right between them, he notices changes in Sharon and hires a private investigator. To his dismay, he finds out that Sharon is not the woman he thought she was. Will he forgive her and salvage their marriage, or will he seek revenge?

Get ready for the thrill of your life. All I Ever Wanted is like being on a roller coaster, filled with twists and turns that will give you an adrenaline rush but leave you wanting more. So, sit back and enjoy the ride!

**On sale for only .99 cents July 13– 18!!** 

I am thirty-five years old with a successful business, a beautiful wife, and a lovely four-bedroom home. All that’s missing is little feet running around, but Sharon’s not trying to hear it. Her argument is that I wouldn’t have time to be a father because I am always working. I know that comes from anger, because I’m not spending time with her right now, but things are about to change. I know I would be a great father; if only she would get on board with starting a family.

I am thirty-two years old, and I’m not ready to be tied down with a child. There are still places I want to go, and things I want to see. McKenzie provides a pleasant and comfortable living for us, and I enjoy the freedom to come and go when I’m ready. He is hardly home anyway, so I don’t understand why he’s so focused on wanting to start a family. A child would only complicate things for me.

“Dr. Morgan, I don’t want this baby.”

A look of surprise came over her face.

“Mrs. Taylor, I think you should go home, get
some rest and discuss this with your husband.” 

I gave her a cold stare and repeated myself. “I don’t want this baby.”

“I hear what you are saying, but before you make any decision, sit down and talk it over with your husband.” 

I nodded in agreement; there was no need to continue this conversation; she wasn’t listening to me. McKenzie can never find out about this baby.

“Sharon has been acting strange. Well, I wouldn’t say strange but different. She is reverting to her old ways. I thought we had gotten past all of that, but I guess not. I just have this feeling that something is not right. This is why I called you today, Mr. Everette. I want you to follow my wife."

Here I am standing over the bed watching Sharon sleep. Any doubt I had about her cheating on me was confirmed. I know she’s cheating. She must think I’m stupid. I must admit the lie she told about going to the office would’ve been convincing if Sylvia were there. But Sylvia had gone after lunch to handle personal business, so I gave her the rest of the day off because I was leaving early to spend time with Sharon. I get home to find her not there. Then she has the nerve to be wearing only a trench coat. The dead giveaway was the wetness between her thighs, not to mention the smell of men cologne, which by the way wasn’t mine.

Fantasy (Forbidden Love Series Book 2)

Forbidden Love (Forbidden Love Series Book 3) 

About the Author:
RHAYNE is the eldest child out of five. She was born and raised in Georgia, where she currently lives today with her husband and two sons. She writes women fiction and is the author of the Forbidden Love series, which comprises three novels entitled: All I Ever wanted, Fantasy, and Forbidden Love.


$10 Amazon 

Follow the tour HERE for special content and a giveaway! 

Sunday, July 26, 2020

The Story Behind the Story: The Princes of Stone and Steel by Sarah Zolton Arthur + giveaway

I bet you’re wondering about what would cause a normally sane person to write a book based on the game rock, paper, scissors. Me too--kidding. I was on vacation with my boys up at Mackinac Island in the Straits of Mackinaw in Michigan. The sun shone bright with a light breeze dancing over the beach. There was the sound of gulls screeching overhead, and that smell of water that only comes off a large body of water. That’s where I wrote what would become chapter 2, or Millicent Merchant 1820s.

So into this story, when my boys began arguing over a toy, I had them rock, paper, scissors it out to decide who got to play with it first. That’s honestly how it came about. No one had done it, based a book on the game, so why didn’t I?

I’ll continue to write my steamy romance but YA PNR and fantasy are where I found my love of writing again. It’s where my heart is at. No matter what I write in the future, I won’t stop.

The name of the land is Roshambo, it’s the lesser-known name of rock, paper, scissors. Sometimes you see it spelled Rochambeau but I changed the spelling because some people had a hard time in those early days pronouncing it.

Since it’s based on rock, paper, scissors those clearly had to be the people of the land. I thought, wouldn’t it be fun to base their civilizations off of major civilizations in our history. Thus, we have the Vrachos, which is Greek for rock, then we have the Forfex which is Latin literally for scissors, and Papyrus people. Papyrus is clearly the ancient Egyptian word for paper.

The role of the flesh in the story came to me because you need people to play it. Hands. Hands covered in… wait for it… flesh! This is the start of a series because, with rock clans, paper clans, and scissor clans, somebody’s always up to something. Plus, there are other major civilizations to pull from that have the potential to cause trouble.

The Princes of Stone and Steel (Roshambo Rising Book 1)
by Sarah Zolton Arthur
July 6, 2020
Genre: YA Fantasy Romance
She must remember the past to save the future. 

What starts as the abduction of Millie Merchant turns into an awakening of bitter truth. Her life is a lie. Her family a fake. It’s all been part of an elaborate hoax to keep her from her destiny. A destiny that lies in the land of Roshambo.

The lines between fantasy & reality blur as she’s transported to a fantastical realm boarding on extinction. Struggling to make sense of it all, Millie is presented with two princes determined to win her hand. One has her best interest at heart, the other seeks control of the realm. But who can she trust in a world full of strangers?

War is looming. Nightmarish beasts prowl the lands. It falls to Millie to be the salvation of Roshambo. For she alone is the ruler the Outliers have been searching for. The origins of rock, paper, scissors come alive in a tale far more twisted than a simple child’s game.

Korrigan was right. If I played my cards right, I could probably find myself in a lip lock with several men tonight. The question was: Did I want to? I wasn’t exactly in my element here. She sauntered up to the bar in full-on Korrigan mode, swaying her hips seductively, throwing me a wink over her shoulder. Korrigan knew how to work a room.

Me, I stayed close, trying not to make eye contact or any sudden movements.

“Kori. Looking gorgeous as always.” The bartender, one of the highly-tattooed, highly-pierced, leather-and-denim-wearing masses, shot her a sly smile. “What can I get you?”

“Two of my usual,” she answered dryly, looking around everywhere but at him, as if already bored with the conversation.

“Coming right up.” Bartender-man’s tone wasn’t dry, and I got the sense that this was some sort of game the two played on a regular basis. “Who’s your friend there?” He gestured with his chin toward me.

“This is Mils. We work together.”

“Mils.” He smiled that same slick smile my way and handed off my bottle.

“Come on, girl.” She took my hand, leading us straight into the middle of the dancefloor. “Time to have some fun.”

Well, dancing had never been my forte but following Korrigan’s lead, I swayed my hips with my arms lifted in the air. Pretty much whatever move she threw out, I copied. Men pressed up against her backside dancing. Men pressed up against my backside dancing. A different guy than the one currently attempting to grind against me, most likely intoxicated, rather loudly asked my name again.

“Mils,” Kori answered just as loudly right as the music died to start a slow song. When I turned around to see who had asked my name, it didn’t matter once I saw him walking my way. I’d never seen such a stunningly handsome man before in my life. My mouth went dry and my feet forgot how to work. A zing of electric excitement trilled down my spine when we locked eyes. Holy-ever-loving-moly. Did I say my mouth went dry? Because it did and I became momentarily stupid.

Short, spiky blond hair the color of rose gold. Even through the haze of smoke, his eyes shone just short of glistening this startling silver-gray, reminding me of brushed aluminum. Majestically high, slightly rounded cheekbones and straight nose. Tall and toned, his sculpted biceps pushed the boundaries of the black T-shirt fabric’s stretch. In short, he appeared before me, the epitome of my ideal male perfection. Like a dream, he kept walking until we stood face to face, not moving.

“Mils?” he whispered, running a finger lightly up the length of my arm, spiking the tiny hairs along with my blood pressure. I was lucky to get my head to nod. Why he’d be paying me a lick of attention when Korrigan stood mere inches from us dumbfounded me.

“D-Do you have a name?” Great. Stuttering now. My embarrassment quickly waned, though, as a look flashed in his eyes when I asked his name. Disappointment, maybe?

“You can call me ‘Steele.’” Steele. His voice deep and smooth, but almost metallic at the fringes. I had the feeling that maybe I should have known him, possibly a local celebrity.

“Nice to meet you, Steele.”

“Nice to meet you, Mils.” Humorlessly, he laughed at the way he said my name and pulled on the hem of my leather vest until no space remained between us.

On any normal day, I’d have been put off by being laughed at. Today, however, was no normal day, and I found myself too mesmerized by the man to care.

Then, with his hands low on my hips, he swayed us slowly.

The moment might have been calm, but someone forgot to inform my heart because the way I felt it pounding in my chest, it must have thought we were slam dancing. Steele rested his forehead down in the crook of my neck. The whole experience felt glorious until his lips brushed my skin. He trailed his finger up and down my arm as he pressed his lips to the pulse on my neck. I stilled in his arms.

“Mils? What’s wrong?” Those eyes captured me, pulled me into them with the gravitational force of a black hole.

“I’ve never been… That is…” I released a long breath before continuing. “No one has ever kissed me before.”

There. That flash of disappointment in his eyes again.

“Then let me be your first.” Steele brought his mouth up so close to mine, his glorious scent, some mixture of fruity and minty, filled my nose. I closed my eyes as he closed the minute gap, brushing his lips softly at first against mine. His breath hitched. My breath hitched. And then he pressed deeper, not hurried, but like he cared about this kiss. The electric trill spread from my spine to all my extremities—arms and legs and fingers and feet.

When he pulled back, it took me a moment to collect myself. I wanted to scold him for doing so. I wanted him to kiss me and keep on kissing me until neither of us could stand any longer. Or until the bar closed and they kicked us out where we would have to go somewhere else to keep on kissing.

He began to sway our bodies again, and it didn’t matter that the song had switched back to fast, heavy and hard-hitting. Our dance felt intimate, as if he and I alone danced in this room full of people. My reaction to this stranger confused me yet felt as natural as laughing at the same time.

“Will you remember tonight?” He spoke softly into my ear. A curious question.

“Of course, I’ll remember tonight. I don’t think I could ever forget you.”

About the Author:
Sarah Zolton Arthur is a USA TODAY Bestselling author of Adult Contemporary Romance, Romantic Suspense, Rom-Com, LBGTQ+, and PNR author who recently decided to dip her toes in the world of YA Fantasy. She spends her days embracing the weirdly wonderful parts of life with her two kooky sons while pretending to be a responsible adult. And there is plenty of the weird and wonderful to go around with her older son being autistic and the younger being a plain ol' wisecracker.

She resides in Michigan, where the winters bring cold, and the summers bring construction. The roads might have potholes, but the beaches are amazing.

Above all else, she lives by these rules. Call them Sarah's life edicts: In Sarah's world all books have kissing and end in some form of HEA. Because really, what more do you need in life?

$25 Amazon Giftcard, a Princes of Stone and Steel notebook and a premium 22oz. insulated water bottle with logo
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Saturday, July 25, 2020

Eastfall (Sum Of All Tears Book 3) by Kim Cresswell + giveaway

Eastfall (Sum Of All Tears Book 3)
by Kim Cresswell
March 24, 2021
Genre: Post-Apocalyptic Paranormal Thriller
A destroyed world. A discovery that will reveal the dark truth.

In the third exciting installment of the Sum of all Tears series, the last of humanity needs a hero as chaos rises to dangerous levels inside Liberty, threatening the future of civilization.

Fans of The Day after Tomorrow, Mad Max, Divergent, and The Hunger Games will enjoy this enthralling post-apocalyptic dystopian series with a paranormal twist. Join the epic life-and-death battle for survival today!

**On Sale for only $2.99!!**

Series book trailer 

Liberty (Sum Of All Tears Book 2 )

Icehaven (Sum Of All Tears Book 1)

About the Author:

Kim Cresswell resides in London, Ontario, Canada and is the bestselling and award-winning author of the action-packed WHITNEY STEEL series. Kim recently signed a 3-book German translation deal with LUZIFER Verlag for the first three books in the series: Reflection, Retribution and Resurrect. The popular series will be published in German beginning in 2018.

Her debut romantic suspense, REFLECTION (A Whitney Steel Novel – Book One), has won numerous awards: RomCon®’s 2014 Readers’ Crown Finalist (Romantic Suspense), InD’tale Magazine 2014 Rone Award Finalist (Suspense/Thriller), UP Authors Fiction Challenge Winner (2013), Silicon Valley’s Romance Writers of America (RWA) “Gotcha!” Romantic Suspense Winner (2004), Honourable Mention in Calgary’s (RWA) The Writer’s Voice Contest (2006).

LETHAL JOURNEY won RomCon®’s 2014 Readers’ Crown (Thriller) and was a finalist in From the Heart Romance Writers (FTHRW) Golden Gate Contest (2003).

She also published two Kindle Worlds novellas (Jet: Oblivion and Jet: Duplicity) featuring characters from her Whitney Steel series and JET from Russell Blake’s New York Times bestselling JET action thriller series. You can read Russell Blake’s interview with Kim at

Kim recently signed with Joel Eisenberg at Council Tree Productions, a feature film and TV development company located in Los Angeles, California. The ASSASSIN CHRONICLES TV series is based on her upcoming 4-book paranormal/supernatural thriller series: Deadly Shadow, Assassin’s Prophecy, Invisible Truth, and Vision of Fire.

Prize #1: 1 Winner of the Ultimate Romantic Thriller Ebook Library

Prize #2: 1 Winner of the Ultimate Romantic Thriller Audiobook Library (Audible US or UK) 
Follow the tour HERE for special content and a giveaway! 

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