Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Jack Canon’s American Destiny by Greg Sandora

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Take a Journey for the Greater Good in this intensely gripping, loving thriller. Join Jack Canon and his insanely loyal team of friends and family as they make their all-or-nothing run for the presidency. You’ll laugh out loud and have your heart ripped in two; all while holding your breath, sitting on the edge of your chair. You’ll become emotionally committed as you find yourself standing behind your new courageous – unstoppable heroes – forced to take unimaginable steps to reach their goal. You’ll be shocked at the heart-wrenching cost.

JACK CANON’S AMERICAN DESTINY – TO SOMEDAY HAVE THE POWER, TO DEDICATE THE HIGHEST OFFICE IN THE LAND–TO MAKE THINGS RIGHT. THIS TIME HE’S ALL IN.

Meghan’s Review. this reader captured the essence of the Story of Jack Canon. Both men and woman will enjoy the book.

“‘Jack Canon’s American Destiny’ is one of those intense political thrillers that simply deserve to be made into a movie for full, complete enjoyment. This is especially true right in the wake of the recent Academy Awards and movies like ‘Argo’ and ‘Lincoln’ bringing home the bacon. But on its own, this book is immersive—you can live and breathe in the world of Jack Canon—his full range of concerns, from picayune to grandiose, consists of things that are close to every American’s heart.

Jack Canon is an everyman—you can relate to his positive traits, even his minor character flaws, and mostly you can relate to his will get the presidency. Cleverly written, sprinkled with the right amount of “spice” to keep the level of interest high, ‘American Destiny’ is a tale that grips your heart and squeeze it—Jack Canon’s mission to redistribute wealth and give everybody cheap energy is not exactly acceptable in the eyes (and pockets) of those whose businesses will be affected. And from there, the plot thickens.

Finishing the book, your heart aches because you know Jack Canon isn’t real—he’s an ideal, made magically alive by the sheer talent of Greg Sandora. But that doesn’t mean we cannot aspire. As in the book’s timeline, 2016, maybe the book is telling us to be really, really wise in our choices. Meanwhile, download a copy of this book and sink your teeth in the kind of literary entertainment I’ve never seen since Alex Cross.”

Joanna’s Review. “Jack Canon is an idealist. He’s on the road to fight the good fight and the only road that will allow him to do that is the one leading to the White House. Great plan, but plans don’t always end up going the way we want. This Senior Democratic Senator from Kentucky is a kind, smart, charismatic family man. He is a man of superior intelligence who isn’t afraid to admit to a mistake. He has always been faithful, but he has a very intimate, hands off relationship with Sandy his assistant. Hopefully this won’t derail his campaign…

“Jack Canon’s American Destiny” is a sly ride on a slippery slope. This fast paced thriller is packed with political issues that mirror what we have going on today. If you notice, the villains are a conglomerate of who we have deadly problems with right now, so it echoes what we deal with on the global level at this time.

The author, Greg Sandora, manages to introduce all this well written madness in a way that will keep you glued to this book. Sandora has used well flushed out characters, timely villains, an image of our present president therefore the actions are very relatable to the reader.

Want to have some fun? Want to read something that will have you dangling over the edge of a cliff in that good way that starts your heart pumping and your adrenaline kicking in?”

Diane’s review .“I rarely choose a book about politics, but since becoming addicted to the hit show Scandal, I thought Jack Canon`s American Destiny might be an interesting read. To my amazement, I totally enjoyed this political thriller.

Allow me to congratulate the author on his impressive debut. As a writer, he has a talent that allows an immediate connection with his characters, especially Jack.

The book moves at a relaxing pace. But I must admit, I became extremely absorbed when the author reveals an unexpected twist making it a suspenseful page turner!

I can’t wait to read the highly anticipated sequel.”

Jackie’s review. “Get ready to take a ride. The suspense, the loyalty, the inside world of politics all wrapped into a thriller you will not want to put down. I am recommending this to my book club and any book club who wants a good read for a change.”

Terry’s Review. I have read this book in it’s infancy stage and was amazed. The final product riveting. Ben Affleck, you are the perfect Director, Producer and Actor to be Jack Canon. It is ready for the big screen. Read it now and you will want more of Jack. This book will inspire your next election choice. We need a real life Jack Canon for President. Move over Alex Cross, here comes a new generation hero. This is a story that can take many turns and always keep you waiting for the next chapter. It is written from the heart with passion, but with some hope for all Americans that fiction can be real if you only want it bad enough. So for you politicians out there that want to be the next President, read this book.

Buy Now @ Amazon & Smashwords

Genre – Political Thriller

Rating – PG

More details about the author

Connect with Greg Sandora on Facebook & Twitter

Website http://www.gregsandora.com/

Author Interview–Leslie Kelly @lesliekelly

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Image of Leslie A. Kelly

How important are friends in your life?

I have a few very good friends, and probably a lot of casual ones. I think the good friends are irreplaceable. I have one friend who was my best friend throughout middle and high school. We lived many states apart for twenty years, but since I have come back to Maryland, we’ve reconnected, and honestly, it’s like the years and the miles never existed. We fell right back into that wonderful kinship we always shared. I don’t know what I’d do without her, or without my other closest writer friends, who I know have always got my back. All that said, though, my husband is my best friend. He’s the one I can talk to about absolutely anything. We share each other’s dreams and constantly support each other. I just can’t imagine life without him.

How many friends does a person need?

I think if someone has a REAL best friend–the kind of friend who would absolutely lay down on a bed of nails for you–they should count themselves lucky. I’d rather have one person I know I can trust with my life and with my dreams than twenty II can drink wine with and then not speak to for a month.

What does love mean to you?

Love means HAVING to say you’re sorry. (I hate that stupid quote from Love Story. Why wouldn’t you say you’re sorry to someone you love, if you’ve done something to hurt them? Sorry–rant over!) To me, true love is about partnership–no one is the senior partner, it’s all equal. Love knowing down to your soul that you’d rather hurt yourself than hurt the other person. It’s knowing about being with someone whose happiness, safety and welfare you put before your own. If you care more about their happiness and well being than you do about your own, you love them. It’s about always wanting that person to be the one you go to with your very best news or your very worst.

When you get free time on the internet or you go to the library – what do you want to read about?

I get really interested in historical periods or events and I love to learn more about them online. I go through non-fiction, or historical fiction times, when I’ll read eight straight books about the Tudors, or the medieval era, or World War II, and then I’ll go online and read more about what I’ve read. I love just Googling and learning.

Do you find the time to read?

I do not turn off the light and go to sleep until I’ve read. I just can’t. I read every single night of my life.

Last book you purchased? Tell us about it.

I just bought and read an entire series called The Breakers by an author named

Edward W. Robertson. I’ve loved them–they’re dystopian. A virus wipes out 99% of humanity, and then the aliens arrive. Very cool. I really admire how he’s taken his story and come at it from different points of view with every book. You see the overall story (the virus, the invasion) from so many angles and perspectives, it always stays fresh.

Who do you admire?

I admire a lot of people, but the first person who popped in my mind is my oldest daughter. She’s a lovely, gentle, kind-hearted young woman who wants nothing more, and nothing less, to make the world a better place. She’s getting a master’s degree in peace-keeping from American University, and is about to set off to Africa on a humanitarian mission. She’s amazing. I sometimes wonder where on earth she came from.

What is your least favorite quality about yourself?

I don’t have much patience. I’m much more the type to rush through and just do something than stop and figure out the best way to do it.

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

“At night, when the objective world has slunk back into its cavern and left dreamers to their own, there come inspirations and capabilities impossible at any less magical and quiet hour. No one knows whether or not he is a writer unless he has tried writing at night.” – H.P. Lovecraft

I really like this quote because I’m a Lovecraft fan, and because I love writing at night. He’s captured the essence of why.

What is your favorite color?

Green! Maybe that’s why I so love Ireland…and the lovely rolling hills of western Maryland where I live.

What is your favorite food?

I love fruity, chewy candy. If given the choice between expensive chocolates and Starburst, I would always go for the Starburst. Or Skittles, Twizzlers, Sour Patch Kids, Swedish Fish. I guess I have a kid’s taste in candy.

What’s your favorite place in the entire world?

Home. Wherever that is. It’s not the house I’m living in, but the people living in it with me. Anywhere my family is. That sounds pithy, but it’s true. I can be happy anywhere as long as I’m with my loved ones.

DontLookAway

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Thriller

Rating – R

More details about the author and the book

Connect with Leslie Kelly on Facebook & Twitter

Website http://www.leslieAkelly.com/

Don’t Look Away by Leslie Kelly @lesliekelly

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Excerpt from

DON’T LOOK AWAY

By

Leslie Kelly

“Let’s go,” Ronnie told her partner.

Daniels put his hands up, too, and opened his eyes. The bags under them spotlighted his weariness, not to mention his hangover. Ronnie was seriously going kick his butt later for showing up on the job in such a pathetic state, especially on a day like today, which was shaping up to be a really shitty one. Bad enough on any normal day when they were rounding up the latest gang-enforcer or Pure V dealer, Pure V being the hottest new street drug, a cheap variation of Vicodin. But it was much worse now, when they had to come to this side of town and undergo a thorough inspection.

After they had been given the nod by the sergeant in charge, they stepped out into the bright sunshine, and were each immediately approached by different security teams.

“Sloan, D.C. Police,” she said as soon as one of the men reached her, his weapon still trained on her head. Another soldier stood directly behind his left shoulder, and a third was holding the leash of a thick-chested, sharp-toothed K-9.

Never lowering his semi-automatic, the first soldier held out his other hand. She passed over her badge and photo I.D., then moved away from the car for a thorough search. Both of the vehicle,  and of her.

He examined her badge. The gun came down. But he didn’t holster it.

His mouth barely moving, and his face expressionless, he asked, “Weapon?”

She nodded. “Glock. Rear holster.” Ronnie knew better than to reach back and offer it up herself, which was why she hadn’t made any proactive move toward it before exiting the car. Her head would have been a slushy pile of brain and bone on the sidewalk the second these hard-nosed troops had seen a weapon in her hand.

“Take off your jacket.”

She did, glad to lose the extra weight of the dark, city-issued clothing. Ronnie missed the way she had dressed during her early years as a detective—the pre-2017 days of wearing street clothes on the job. But the way the whole country demanded confirmation and re-confirmation of every person’s identity, she figured it wasn’t surprising that every cop now had to be in uniform. All the way up to the Chief of the National Department of Law Enforcement.

“Spread.”

Assuming a customary position, she went completely still, arms extended at her sides, legs apart. Without saying a word, the men got to work. One of the soldiers removed the 9 mm and spare clip off her back and stepped away to examine them. Another appeared out of nowhere with a digital scanner. He passed it over her upper arm like it was a can of beans at the grocery store, looking for the microchip that was implanted in the arm of every law-abiding American citizen.

The non-law-abiding ones didn’t like them so much.

Neither did the civil rights fanatics who had been among the loudest screaming against the idea several years ago when the government had first tried to get its citizens to voluntarily submit to implantation.

Glancing at the data on the tiny screen, the soldier nodded toward the sergeant. “Identity confirmed. Sloan, Veronica Marie, born Arlington, Virginia, January 5, 1993.”

One step closer. But still not done.

Clipping a state-of-the-art, super-powerful sensor to his hand, the sergeant moved in beside her. He was so close she could feel his breath on the side of her face and smell the sausage he’d had for breakfast.

“Don’t move.” He bit the words out from a jaw so tight it could have been used to crack a walnut.

She was tempted to promise she wouldn’t, but that would constitute moving her mouth and she really didn’t want to get shot or clubbed today. So she just stood there waiting for him to finish.

Showing no emotion, he ran the miniscule device over her entire body, his hand less than a centimeter away from her clothes. If he got any kind of thrill off of scraping his palm across her nipples, he at least had the courtesy not to show it.

DontLookAway 

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Thriller

Rating – R

More details about the author

Connect with Leslie Kelly on Facebook & Twitter

Website http://www.leslieAkelly.com/

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Nobody Has to Know by Frank Nappi @FrankNappi

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http://www.dreamstime.com/-image23713420

Nobody Has To Know, Frank Nappi’s dark and daring new thriller, tells the story of Cameron Baldridge, a popular high school teacher whose relationship with one of his students leads him down an unfortunate and self-destructive path. Stalked through text-messages, Baldridge fights for his life against a terrifying extortion plot and the forces that threaten to expose him. NHTK is a sobering look into a world of secrets, lies, and shocking revelations, and will leave the reader wondering many things, including whether or not you can ever really know the person you love.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Thriller

Rating – PG-13

More details about the author

Connect with Frank Nappi on Facebook & Twitter

Website http://www.franknappi.com

Constantinopolis by James Shipman @jshipman_author

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His father! Mehmet stewed when he thought of him. His father had never shown him any real affection or spent significant time with him. He was not, after all, originally the heir to the Sultanate. He was a second son and only became heir when his older brother died. Mehmet had been forced from then on to endure a frantic and often harsh tutoring process. He was just beginning to grasp his responsibilities when at the age of 12 his father had retired and named him Sultan. He had done the best he could to govern, but in short order Grand Vizier Halil had called his father back to take over the throne. The Sultan felt Halil should have helped him, should have supported him. Instead he had watched and reported Mehmet’s shortcomings to his father, betraying him and leading to his humiliation.

From then on Mehmet had bided his time. He had learned to keep his thoughts and emotions to himself, to trust no one. He had studied everything: military art, languages, administration, and the arts. He had worked tirelessly so that when he next ruled he would not only equal his father but also exceed him. He would be the greatest Sultan in the history of his people, Allah willing.

His chance came when Murad finally died only two years before, as Mehmet turned 19. Mehmet quickly took power, ordering his baby half brother strangled to assure there would be no succession disputes, and set to organizing his empire. He had learned to be cautious and measured, leaving his father’s counselors and even Halil in power to assist him. From there he had slowly built up a group of supporters. They were young and exclusively Christian converts to Islam. These followers, many of whom now held council positions, were not nearly as powerful as the old guard, but they were gaining ground. They were the future, if Halil did not interfere.

Halil. His father’s Grand Vizier and now his own. He had always treated Mehmet with condescending politeness. He was powerful, so powerful that Mehmet could not easily remove him. So powerful it was possible he could remove Mehmet in favor of a cousin or other relative. Mehmet hated him above all people in the world, but he could not simply replace him. He needed Halil, at least for now, and Halil knew it.

This dilemma was the primary reason for Mehmet’s nighttime wanderings. He needed time away from the palace. Time to think and work out a solution to the problem. How could he free himself from Halil without losing power in the process? He could simply order Halil executed, but would the order be followed or would it be his own head sitting on a pole? The elders and religious leaders all respected and listened to Halil. Only the young renegades, the Christian converts who owed their positions to Mehmet were loyal to him. If Halil was able to rally the old guard to him, Mehmet had no doubt that the result would be a life or death dispute.

Mehmet needed to find a cause that could rally the people to him. The conversations he had heard night after night told him this same thing. The people felt that his father was a great leader, and that he was not. If he could gain the people’s confidence, then he would not need Halil, and the other elders would follow his lead.

Mehmet knew the solution. He knew exactly what would bring the people to his side, and what would indeed make him the greatest Sultan in the history of the Ottoman people.

The solution however was a great gamble. His father and father’s fathers had conquered huge tracts of territory in Anatolia and then in Europe, primarily at the expense of the Greeks. Mehmet intended to propose something even more audacious, to conquer the one place that his ancestors had failed to take. If he succeeded he would win the adoration of his people and would be able to deal with Halil and any others who might oppose him. If he failed . . .

The Sultan eventually made his way back near the palace, to the home of his closest friend, Zaganos Pasha. Zaganos, the youngest brother of Mehmet’s father in law, had converted to Islam at age 13, and was Mehmet’s trusted general and friend. He was the most prominent member of the upstart Christian converts that made up the Sultan’s support base.

Zaganos was up, even at this late hour, and embraced his friend, showing him in and ordering apple tea from his servants. Zaganos was shorter and stockier than Mehmet, a powerful middle-aged man in the prime of his life. He had receding dark brown hair. A long scar cut across his forehead and down over his left eye. He looked on Mehmet with smiling eyes extending in to crow’s feet. He smiled like a proud uncle or father.

Constantinopolis

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Historical Fiction

Rating – PG

More details about the author and the book

Connect with  James Shipman on Facebook & Twitter

Website http://james-shipman.com

Monday, October 28, 2013

#AmReading - Meant To Be (Heaven Hill Series) by Laramie Briscoe @LaramieBriscoe

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Meant To Be by Laramie Briscoe

Amazon Kindle

Single mother.
Laid off factory worker.
Drug runner for the Heaven Hill Motorcycle Club.
When Denise Cunningham is served with foreclosure papers on her birthday it’s the last straw in a long line of bad luck. Sitting and crying about things has never been how she solved her problems, but this time she decides to do just that. A phone call interrupts her pity party and changes the course of her life forever.
Loyal brother.
Grease monkey mechanic.
Vice President of the Heaven Hill Motorcycle Club.
William Walker Jr., known as Liam to his club, needs a new recruit that is just naïve enough and desperate enough to do what he asks without question. When Denise Cunningham lands in his lap, he decides to hire her - not because he wants to, because he has to.
Neither are comfortable in their new roles, but he needs help and she can’t stand to lose anything else.
As bullets fly and a local Bowling Green, KY reporter works to bring the club down, Liam and Denise find themselves getting closer to one another. When the stakes get high and outside forces try to keep them away from each other, they have to decide if they really are meant to be.

Brie McGill – Finding Your Voice @briemcgill

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Finding Your Voice

by Brie McGill

I remember the first time I found my voice: I was thirteen years old, mastered a few power chords on the guitar, rehearsed an awful Courtney Love impersonation by my lonesome, and received my first amp. I knew I broke into that voice when the first neighbor threw a sneaker at my head. The moment was definitive.

Finding a voice in writing is much the same way: I know when I’ve found it, it’s an unmistakable feeling–not quite like having some dirt and a backwards imprint of Nike smashed into my face, but equally direct.

When I finished my first book, Kain, I felt like VOICE was the holy grail of authors: every agent’s website screamed at me, “Voice! Voice!” Writing workshops, writing websites, writing forums, all of them vehemently stress the importance of voice.

What is voice? It’s the voice of the main character, the character whose viewpoint filters the story.

As a new writer, this was a particularly challenging concept, because much of my education dealt with formal writing. Some grammatical rules are mandatory because the written word must make sense–otherwise, imagine a busy intersection with no traffic lights–but fiction is not so stilted.

Imagine a nineteen-year-old country bumpkin visiting an upscale lingerie store downtown. She might blush, delicately leafing through the coral silks, the ivory silks, in search of something with pearls and scalloped lace.

Now imagine an ex-convict with an unkempt beard rolling up on his motorcycle, ready to storm into a lingerie store downtown. He might spit before busting through the door, roll his eyes at a rack of frilly pink things, and look for something leather to…

Well, that’s the idea. The word choice of the narration must reflect the main character’s opinions, worldview, and experience. The color “coral” does not exist in our biker friend’s vocabulary–much like an entire dictionary of swears would never flow from the sweet lips of our nineteen-year-old country bumpkin.

Another delicate point to consider when crafting a character’s voice is the character’s relevant knowledge base. In the draft of my first opening scene, I made a gross error about the way an unconscious body is transported–thankfully, a military friend looked over the manuscript and spared me total humiliation. Despite the fact I had done an enormous amount of research for the book, this drove home the fact that voice-appropriate attention to detail is indispensible, and one can never research too much.

When I start writing a book, I have all the characters imagined in my mind; the process of writing continues to refine them and I learn more about my characters along the way. Often during the latter half of penning a rough draft, I reach a point where I know my characters well enough to poke fun at them. I can place them in ironic situations and play upon their weaknesses for comic relief. This, to me, is the golden indicator that I have indeed found my voice–and my findings are easily incorporated into the following reconstructive edit.

For authors struggle with finding the voice of a piece, focus on the character. Focus on what makes him human, what makes him quirky, and indulge the details–I promise, the voice will follow.

When you finally find your voice, maybe you will even break some glass–or at the very least, amass a nice runner collection.

Kain

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Genre –  Sci-Fi/Steamy Romance

Rating – R (18+)

More details about the author & the book

Connect with Brie McGill on Facebook  & Twitter

Website http://www.sexdrugsandcyberpunk.com/

In Love With My Best Friend by Sheena Binkley

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1

Camille

How did my life get so complicated? One minute, I, Camille Anderson, was living a pretty normal life in which nothing ever happened to me, and the next I'm practically being hauled away from the premier wedding venue in Houston, The Corinthian, by security because of my sudden outburst to the groom.

I should have known I was setting myself up for disaster, but I had to do it. I had to tell my best friend that I'd been in love with him since I was thirteen.

I really didn't expect the scene to unfold the way it did, especially while Trevor was getting married, but I couldn't hold my feelings in much longer. I felt he was making a terrible mistake, because he was marrying the wrong woman. He should have been marrying me.

I guess I should backtrack to when Trevor and I first met. It was seventeen years ago, when the Williams family first moved into the house next to ours. I was outside waiting for my friend Tia Simmons to come by when I first noticed Trevor. He was absolutely gorgeous as he stepped out of his family's SUV. He had that "boy next door" look, with wavy black hair and smooth ivory skin. He looked over at me and gave me a huge grin, which I greatly returned.

After that day, not only did we become friends, but our parents became great friends as well. We always went by each other's homes for dinner or for game night (until we were too old to appreciate hanging out with our parents on a Friday night).

We were practically inseparable during our high school years, and many of our friends thought we would eventually get married and have lots of kids. When anyone mentioned that to Trevor, he would shrug it off and say, "We're just friends, and it will stay that way until the day we die." Usually those words would tug at my heartstrings, but being the shy person I am, I never let my feelings show.

As we went to college, Trevor and I went into the same major, public relations. That was when he met Chelsea Parker, who was also my roommate. At first I liked Chelsea because she was basically a sweet person, but when she set her sights on Trevor, I quickly disliked her. Not because she took Trevor away from me, but because she became a different person.

If only I could go back to four weeks ago, or even seventeen years ago, I would be with the man I loved...

~

Four weeks ago....

"I don't know why you dragged me to this," I said as I looked at my friend Tia. The two of us were inside the Aventine Ballroom of Hotel Icon waiting for our friend Trevor and his fiancée, Chelsea, to arrive for their engagement and welcome home party. The two had announced their engagement to everyone a while back when Trevor was visiting his parents before going back to Dallas. Not only did he announce his engagement, but he also said that he had accepted a new position at a prestigious PR firm and was moving back to Houston. Although I was happy that my best friend was moving back, I was not thrilled that he was getting married.

"For once, why can't you be happy for Tre? He and Chelsea are finally getting married."

I gave Tia an evil stare as I looked toward the revolving door to the ballroom.

"You know how I feel about Trevor and Chelsea getting married."

"Oh please, Cam, when are you going to get past the fact that Trevor found someone? I told you to admit your feelings to him, but being the person you are, you decided not to."

"What's that supposed to mean?"

"You felt you would have been rejected if you told Trevor your true feelings."

"If I remember correctly, in high school when Charles asked him why we never hooked up, he said, and I quote, 'We're just friends.'"

Tia rolled her eyes at me and started to stare at the door as well. This was not the first time we'd had this conversation about my feelings for Trevor, so I'm pretty sure Tia was tired of hearing it.

Tia was my other best friend and the complete opposite of me. While I was quiet and reserved, Tia was wild and carefree. She always did what she wanted and didn't care about the consequences. People always thought we were sisters, with our caramel-colored complexion and long, dark-brown hair. But that was where the similarities ended. I looked down at my black sequin dress that went above my knees, wondering if I was dressed appropriately for the occasion; but as I looked at the hot-pink dress Tia was sporting, I figured my outfit was perfect.

"So how are things between you and Eric?"

"Finished; I broke up with him a couple of days ago."

"I'm assuming because he's not Trevor? Cam, you have got to move on."

I sighed as I noticed two figures coming through the door. I started to breathe slowly as I watched my friend walk in with his fiancée. Trevor always was attractive, but tonight he looked really handsome in a dark blue suit, white shirt, and blue and white striped tie. His black, wavy hair was cut short, bringing out his beautiful brown eyes. He walked hand in hand with Chelsea, the woman I wish I'd never met, who was positively glowing in an ivory-colored empire dress. Her reddish brown hair was pulled into a tight ponytail and her makeup was flaw- less. Although I was completely jealous of Chelsea, I had to admit the two made a stunning couple.

Tia gave me a frown.

"You OK?"

"I'm cool. Let's just get this over with."

While the crowd of family and friends were clapping and whistling for the happy couple, all I could do was just stand in my place, looking at Trevor as if he was the only person in the room. He gave me a smile that showed the deep dimples on each of his cheeks. As he went to greet a couple of his family members, I took a deep breath to control any tears from flowing.

I shouldn't have come tonight.

~

Trevor

"Why did we plan a huge engagement party? Everyone knows we're engaged," I asked my fiancée, Chelsea, as we were walking hand in hand down the corridor inside Hotel Icon.

"Sweetie, I just wanted everyone to celebrate in our happiness and what better way than a huge party?"

I sighed as I continued to walk, not realizing how frustrated I was becoming.

Chelsea was the love of my life. I instantly knew I wanted to marry her when I first laid eyes on her in Camille's dorm room. The two were roommates their junior year at University of Houston, which was great for me, considering I was able to see my best friend and my girlfriend at the same time. Although Camille and I were really good friends, I got the sense that something had been bothering her since I'd been dating Chelsea. Call me crazy, but it seemed as if Camille was jealous of our relationship. I hope not, because Chelsea loves Camille and considers her a good friend.

As we walked into the ballroom, everyone from our family and our friends were clapping and cheering for our arrival. We started to wave at everyone as we entered. Once I turned my head toward the center of the room, I had to stop and admire the person staring straight at me. My heart jolted several beats at the beauty who was giving me a dazzling smile. Camille Anderson had always been a beautiful woman, from her caramel-colored skin to her deep chocolate eyes; she definitely stood out in a crowd.

Just looking at her long hair flowing around her face and the black dress that hugged her curves in all the right places made me feel sort of embarrassed, because I shouldn't have been looking at her in that way. I always considered her my best friend and nothing more, so why was I looking at her differently now?

Chelsea turned her attention to me, wondering what was wrong.

"Is everything OK?"

I suddenly realized I was staring a little too long as I turned to Chelsea.

"I'm fine," I said as I squeezed her hand.

I gave Camille a huge grin as I walked over to talk to a nearby guest. I snuck another peek at her; she was talking to our friend Tia near the bar. I don't know what was going on with me, but hopefully this feeling I was having about my best friend would go away soon.

That's if I want it to.

In Love With My Best Friend

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Genre - Contemporary Fiction

Rating – PG13

More details about the author

Connect with Sheena Binkley on Twitter

Website http://sheenabinkley.wordpress.com/

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Birth of an Assassin by Rik Stone @stone_rik

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Otto’s mind takes him back to finding his mother at the Serbsky Institute.

Inmates had jittered and made signs at him as he made his way through the corridors. “Please help me,” he heard from some and, “They have me here because of my political beliefs,” from others. They’d reached out to him as he passed, and his insides had quaked. With the stench of piss and shit everywhere, revulsion filled him. But he’d felt no compassion for these people. He hadn’t given a fuck about them. Only his mother mattered.

“This way,” the nurse had said. “She’s through here.”

He found her in a large open room. She sat on the only piece of furniture in it. The chair was pushed back against the wall and she rocked slightly, staring blankly into nothingness. Spittle leaked from her mouth and she was barely recognizable as the woman he loved. Her long, luxurious, oily-black hair had been shaven to the skin. Her teeth had somehow been removed and her formerly full face had caved in because of it. Like a corpse, she was yellowed and sunken. Only 47 years old and she looked twice that. He’d wished he hadn’t found her and cried bitterly – in front of those sadistic bastards that called themselves nurses.

More like prison guards. And in reality, that’s what they were. Soviet dissidents ended up in places like Serbsky, out of harm’s way. In mental hospitals where they could be abused and broken. Somewhere to extinguish credibility. He’d seen those inmates beaten, teeth punched or kicked from their faces. And if they still didn’t bow to the might of the people, enforced lobotomy wasn’t unheard of as a final step.

With desperation, he’d hoped his mother hadn’t suffered such cruelty.

*

And now, somehow, she’d made it through to 60. Why, oh why had she lasted this long? All those years, and still she rocked on that old wooden chair and stared at nothing. How could life be this cruel?

He remembered the first time he’d visited the asylum in full Spetsnaz uniform. After calling several of the nurses together, he said, “I know you all have military connections. On that basis, I won’t explain this uniform. Each of you has some sort of responsibility to my mother. The good news is you’re about to receive an extra income. The bad news: if you don’t look after my mother properly and see she gets the kind of care and nourishment she needs, I may have to call on my KGB colleagues. I hope we all understand what that could mean.”

Memories dissolved as he entered the large open room. On his instructions, her hair had been left to grow. But now it was too long and no one had shown it a comb. Still she rocked, gazing into nothingness with the expression of a lunatic on her face.

The burly warder turned to leave but Otto grabbed his arm. “We have an agreement. Next time I come here, I expect my mother to be presentable. Look at her, her hair hasn’t had attention for who knows how long. She needs a bath and a change of clothes. She looks like she’s just puked down them.”

“I err…,” the nurse spluttered with a voice too high for his size.

“Fuck you and your errs. Why do I pay you people so much? I’ll say this once. If I’m not satisfied with the way she looks next time I come, I’ll personally see to it that you have teeth to match hers. And each time after that, I’ll take you a step further down that road. Clear enough?”

“Yes, Captain. I’ll see to it myself.”

The nurse left and Otto looked at his mother. His heart brimmed. The only woman he’d ever loved – could ever love. He got down on his honkers, and took her hand. No sign of recognition, but at least she didn’t pull away.

“Hello, Mother, how are you today?”

Birth of an Assassin

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Genre – Thriller, Crime, Suspense

Rating – R

More details about the author

Connect with Rik Stone on Facebook & Twitter

Website http://rik-stone.simdif.com

The Color Pink by Parker Paige

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The_Color_Pink_Cover_for_Kindle

Can wearing the color pink attract true love?

That is the question Summer Jones intends to answer.

In her early thirties, Summer Jones thought that she had found the perfect man, the man she planned to marry until she learned that he still had feelings for his first love. Now, at age thirty-five, Summer is ready to fall in love again. After she hears that wearing the color pink can attract true love, she sets out to do just that–and finds more than just true love.

Follow Summer as she journeys into the world of color magic and find out how she uses that magic to help her choose between one man from her past and another man who is destined to become her future.

This romantic drama serves up something fun and sexy, proving that the road to love can be paved with many painful lessons and memorable moments. It’s a story about paying attention to your past so that you don’t always have to repeat it.

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Genre - Romance

Rating – PG-13

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Connect with Parker Paige on Twitter

Website parkerpaige.wordpress.com

Author Interview – Lee Tidball @leetidball

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What motivates you to write?  I’m always motivated by the idea that what I’m writing is going to be thrilling and exciting for my audience to read; that they’ll love the story, have a wonderful and emotional experience when reading it, and ultimately be left happier, or challenged somehow, etc.

What writing are you most proud of? Besides MALLED, I’m most proud of my first novel, WINDFORK SECRETS, which I originally self-published, but is now coming out in a new edition from a legitimate publisher.  I love the story, and literally hundreds of students I’ve read it to or who have read it, as well as many parents, love it too.  Here’s the Amazon link for the new version.

What are you most proud of in your personal life?  What I’m most proud of is that, whether in my life as a teacher and writer or in my personal life, I seem to have been able to, in the vast majority of cases, make a very good and lasting difference in the lives of those I’ve touched in some way.  My sort of personal mantra is “Making a good difference…” and I feel I’ve lived up to that very well.

What books did you love growing up? Growing up, I mostly enjoyed non-fiction books about military history.  Gradually, I became familiar with the Classics Illustrated graphic novels, which turned me on to classic fiction.  I later enjoyed the Chronicles of Narnia series and the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Who is your favorite author? I have many favorites, mostly in the area of middle-grade/YA literature.  My favorite author of adult fiction is probably Dan Brown.

What book genre of books do you adore?  I enjoy middle-grade and young adult books a lot, but also some adult books as well.  Regardless, it helps if there’s elements of fantasy, science fiction, or action and adventure, any and all mixed with a little romance, that keeps me turning the pages.

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Genre –  NeoGothic Horror / Thriller

Rating – R for violence & language

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Birth of an Assassin by Rik Stone @stone_rik

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Birth of an Assassin

Set against the backdrop of Soviet, post-war Russia, Birth of an Assassin follows the transformation of Jez Kornfeld from wide-eyed recruit to avenging outlaw. Amidst a murky underworld of flesh-trafficking, prostitution and institutionalized corruption, the elite Jewish soldier is thrown into a world where nothing is what it seems, nobody can be trusted, and everything can be violently torn from him.

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Genre - Thriller, Crime, Suspense

Rating – R

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Connect with Rik Stone on Facebook & Twitter

Website http://rik-stone.simdif.com

Author Interview – Dylan Madrid

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If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
I would love to live in Europe, specifically in Belgium or on the Italian or French Rivera. I also love the country of Greece. I was very fortunate to live there for a year and loved every second of it.
My favorite American city is Chicago. It’s my urban muse and shows up in almost everything I write. It’s such an incredible literary landscape. There’s something very poetic about it. I lived there over a decade ago and I feel like I’ve been trying to get back there ever since.
If you could have a dinner party and invite anyone dead or alive, who would you ask?
I would invite five people: Jessica Lange, Tennessee Williams, Oscar Wilde, Mary Wollstonecraft, and my grandmother. After dinner entertainment would be provided by the girl group The Shangri-Las.
What movie do you love to watch?
I was having a really bad day years ago so I decided to go to the local art house movie theatre alone. I saw Cinema Paradiso that day and I’ve never been the same since. That film touched my soul and hasn’t let go. It is the epitome of love.
I’m also a big fan of classic film noir. I think the influence of it is apparent in my work.
How do you spend your time when you are not writing?
When I’m not writing or teaching, I’m often traveling to literary festivals and writing conferences to talk about my work, meet readers, and instruct writing workshops. For fun I love watching classic movies. I’m a big fan of film noir. I also love playing board games, reading a good book, or just spending time with my family and friends.
What marketing works for you?
In addition to social media, most of my work is marketed by word of mouth. Someone discovers something I’ve written and they enjoy it and then tell others about it. I’m always amazed when I meet my readers and they tell me great stories about how they stumbled upon my books.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre - Gay Romance, Suspense
Rating – R
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Friday, October 25, 2013

The Photo Traveler (The Photo Traveler Series) by Arthur J. Gonzalez

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CHAPTER ONE

I can’t ask for a better day to be out shooting. Man, what a view. Something about how the sun’s rays press against the faint distant outline of the mountains. Sick! If it can seem so dominating from all the way over here, I can only imagine what it must feel like up close. I don’t know. It just always kind of does something to me.

I know, I know. Lame, right? But trust me, if you lived in the hellhole I live in, anytime alone is sacred. You start to appreciate all these little not-so-particular things. Yeah—even the outline of the mountains.

Carefully, I focus the lens on my Canon 7D to capture the effect of the clouds drifting across the peaks of Mt. Rose and get my shot. A few seconds later, the sunlight dims. I hadn’t realized it was so late. I glance at my watch, wondering what’s taking Melinda so long. She promised to pick me up by five, even though I knew that would mean five-thirty. It’s five-forty-five.

I call her on my cell. It rings four times, then goes to voicemail. “Come on, Mel!” I mutter. “It’s getting late!”

I’ve had a good day so far, probably because I’ve been alone for most of it, and I really don’t want another confrontation with Jet. I can still taste the faint copper tinge of blood at the corner of my mouth where he split my lip the last time around. Two days ago.

I hit redial. Straight to voicemail. “Dammit, Mel!”

I tell myself to breathe, but my anxiety is really starting to kick in. Sweat is beading on my forehead and my heart is jolting in my chest. Why does she always have to be so impossible? I don’t get it.

The moment I hear the loud thrum of an engine roaring up the dirt road, I jump up from the boulder I’ve been perched on. It’s about damn time!

She screeches up to me in her new, cherry-red Mini Cooper and slams on the brakes. I dodge around to the passenger side. Grab the door handle. It’s locked.

“Mel!” I shout. “Open up!”

But she’s sitting behind the wheel pretending not to hear me. Eyes glued to her phone, purple nails tapping out a text message. With a tiny smirk on her glossed-up lips.

I hit the window with my fist. “Stop messing around! Jet’s gonna be pissed!”

She finishes her text, sends it … and adjusts the rearview mirror so she can check out the jet-black curls at her temples. She still hasn’t given me one look. Is she really serious right now?

I pound at the window again, as hard as I can. “Open up, dammit!” My anxiety is turning into rage. And rage is something Jet’s modeled for me only too well over the years, ever since he and his first wife, Leyla, took me in as a foster kid. Mel was just six at the time, but “my sister,” which she became after they finally adopted me, was a full-fledged brat from Day One, and she’s only gotten worse.

My fist hurts. I’m afraid of what Jet will do when we get back, since he ordered me to be home by six so I can start dinner.

But as far as Mel’s concerned, I might as well not be there. I can’t control it any longer. I take a step back, lift my knee, and kick the passenger door with all my strength. The hollow metal frame vibrates against the sole of my shoe. Mel’s prized car now has a six-inch dent right in the middle of the passenger door.

I guess that got her attention. Her mouth is hanging open. For a moment, she’s so astonished that she can’t speak. She swings her door open and charges around to the passenger side.

“MY CAR!” she screams, staring at the dent. “Are you crazy?!”

“Why couldn’t you just open up?” I yell back.

“Gavin, you’re an asshole! I was just messing with you! You’re never gonna learn to use your head, are you?”

“Go to hell!”

She goes still, then raises her eyebrows with an “Oh, really?” expression. Then she hauls off and slams her fist into the right side of my face. All I can feel is the large stone of her ring jabbing into my cheek. She stalks back to the driver’s side with a wicked smirk creasing her lips and snaps, “You can walk home!”

She slides behind the wheel, slams the door, and peels off so hard and fast that the car kicks up a stinging cloud of gravel and asphalt dust all over me.

She can’t be serious. But as the Mini disappears around the first bend in the road, I realize that she is.

* * *

Photo Traveler

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Genre - Young Adult Science Fiction

Rating – PG

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Website http://www.arthurjgonzalez.com/

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Author Interview – Fenella Miller

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Who or what influenced your writing once you began?

I write Regency romantic adventures because of my love for Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer. I have always been a voracious reader and I’m certain that Dorothy Dunnett, Bernard Cornwall and others like them, have shown me what a good book looks like.

What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing?

An interesting question – which will produce a different answer from every writer you speak to.

Twenty years ago getting published was much easier, a writer could send directly to a publisher and there were dozens of major publishers, rather than just five. Publishers were prepared to stick with an author, build their career, which is not the case today. I know many excellent writers who have been dropped by one of the big five because their sales were not high enough or they couldn’t get their books into the supermarkets. Nowadays unless you are a celebrity, or have written the book of the century, you are unlikely to get an agent to represent you. Without an agent you cannot get to a book to one of the main five publishers.

This is why I am a hybrid writer – I am traditionally published as well as indie publishing. I would never go back to writing exclusively for a mainstream publisher, I love being in control of everything from the writing and editing, proofreading and cover design. I buy these services; if I don’t agree with my editor then I’m not forced to go with their suggestions. I get 70% royalties, I know exactly how much my royalties will be, and I’m paid monthly.

Writing, for me, is the easy part. When I have a story to tell, the book more or less writes itself. As I write historical fiction there is a great deal of research involved in order to get the book accurate, but that is part of the joy of writing.

Marketing has to be done whether you are traditionally published or indie published. I am ambivalent about the benefits of social media. I have a website which I update regularly, and a blog which I try and post on several times a month as well as being a guest and various other blogs. I interact with readers and friends on Twitter and Facebook, I also have a Good Read and a Linkedin account, and belong to several writing loops. I try and limit my time on these things, but I could write twice as much if I didn’t participate. Although publishers insist that their authors have a strong Internet presence, I’m not sure how many extra readers and sales all this faffing about actually produces.

Do you find it hard to share your work?

When I first started I think I was reluctant to let anybody see my writing as I lacked confidence in my work . If you sell thousands of books a month you can probably be fairly sure you are writing something people want to read. I have a group of Beta readers who see my books first, if there is anything wrong with the plot or characters, they will tell me. By the time the book is published it has been professionally edited and proofread and it’s the best I can make it. You can’t please everybody (look at some of my reviews and you will see what I mean) as reading is a very personal thing. A good friend said that 50 Shades of Grey was the best trilogy she’d read in years and I thought it was a load of rubbish – millions of people agreed with her so the fact that I didn’t like it doesn’t mean it must necessarily be a bad book.

Is your family supportive? Do your friends support you?

Yes, my family is supportive as most families are. My daughter-in-law has read all my books, my daughter is not a fan of historical fiction so I don’t think she’s read more than a couple. My sister-in-law is one of my Beta readers – my brother has yet to read anything I’ve written.

I get all the support and encouragement I need from my writer friends. We meet regularly and can be totally honest with each other. We will promote each other’s books although we don’t review as could seem a bit incestuous.

Do you plan to publish more books?

I’m a writer – what else would I do with my work? Apart from having a very long backlist to indie publish I also have three historical family sagas written that only need a professional edit and proofreading before being ready to go. I am also about to start writing the second part of Barbara’s War, and its possible I will write the rest of my young adult fantasy trilogy as well next year.

BarbarasWar

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Genre – Historical fiction

Rating – PG

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#Free–Penalty Clause by Lori Ryan @loriryanauthor

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Penalty Clause by Lori Ryan

Amazon Kindle US

Genre – Romantic Suspense

Rating – R

4.5 (42 reviews)

Free until 24 October 2013

To keep her, he'll have to gamble it all!
Andrew Weston and Jill Walsh had to be the two most unlikely people to fall in love. When Jill's first husband's love for her simply fizzled and died, Jill knew she'd never trust that love could last again. After Andrew's first love betrayed him in the most brutal way possible, he knew he might fall in love again someday, but there was no way he'd ever make himself vulnerable again by confessing those feelings if he did.
Fate had a different ending in mind for these two, though, and when Andrew discovers his love for Jill, he knows the only way to get her to stay with him forever is to offer her an iron clad penalty clause in a prenuptial agreement. He stays with her forever or he loses everything he owns. The millions he's worked for, his property, his cars, everything. Now he just needs to hope that's enough to hold onto Jill forever.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

#Free - Night of the Purple Moon by Scott Cramer @cramer_scott

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image

Abby, 13, is looking forward to watching the moon turn purple, unaware that deadly bacteria from a passing comet will soon kill off older teens and adults. She must help her brother and baby sister survive in this new world, but all the while she has a ticking time bomb inside of her--adolescence.

"Cramer creates a picture of our world that's both frightening and inspiring in this heartfelt story that both young adults and adults can enjoy.A heartwarming but not overly sentimental story of survival." KIRKUS REVIEWS

"Outrageous and completely 'out of the box'."
MY HOME AWAY FROM HOME review blog
"Three words: Gripping. Palpable. Well-developed." WORD SPELUNKING review blog

Buy Now @ Amazon & B&N & iBooks & Kobo

Genre - Science fiction

Rating – PG-13

More details about the author

Connect with Scott Cramer on Facebook & Twitter

Colony East (The Toucan Trilogy #2) by Scott Cramer @cramer_scott

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Colony East
When the bacteria that killed most of world’s adults undergo a deadly mutation, 15-year-old Abby must make the dangerous journey to Colony East, an enclave of scientists and Navy personnel who are caring for a small group of children. Abby fears that time is running short for the victims, but she’s soon to learn that time is running out for everyone outside Colony East. (Parental discretion advised for readers 13 and under)
Colony East will be specially priced at $2.99, 60 percent off the regular price.
Night of the Purple Moon (Book 1 of the Toucan Trilogy) is free.
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Genre - Science fiction
Rating – PG-13
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Author Interview – Marilyn Holdsworth

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What are you most proud of accomplishing so far in your life?
Raising my two wonderful children.
What inspired you to write your first book?
I am very interested in saving the American mustangs and preventing animal abuse especially exploitation of horses. That’s why I wrote my first book, Pegasus.
How do you come up with titles for your books?
I choose titles that will interest my readers and are symbolic to the story. My title Making Wishes has several levels of meaning to the book.
Can you tell us about your main character?
My main character in Making Wishes is Elloree Randall, a young creative woman faced with making some life changing choices. She is torn between her love for her work and her devotion to her sons.
Why did you choose to write this particular book?
I think young women today are confronting difficult life changing choices that dramatically affect their family as well as themselves.
Is there a message in your novel you want readers to grasp?
Yes. I would say that in Making Wishes my message is: A quest for self-discovery to find ones true values often comes at a high price.
How much of the book is realistic?
Although my characters are fictional they are realistic and the story is very believable.
How important do you think villians are?

Making Wishes

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Genre - Women’s fiction

Rating – PG-13

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Connect with Marilyn Holdsworth on Facebook & Twitter

Blog http://MarilynHoldsworth.wordpress.com/

Giveaway

The author is giving away 1 soft cover books and 3 kindle books in this tour.

#AmReading – Enemy in Blue by Derek Blass @DerekBlass

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Enemy in Blue by Derek Blass

Amazon

YOU KNOW WHO YOUR ENEMY IS?
The streets aren't safe when your enemy wears a blue uniform and a gold badge.
What if the good guys weren't good?
What if a cop went rogue and killed an innocent man?

What if it was all caught on video and the cop would do anything to cover it up?
Chase this lawless cop through the streets and to a scintillating series of showdowns with Cruz Marquez, a young attorney trying to nail down his enemy in blue.

Will justice be served?

Monday, October 21, 2013

Guinevere: On the Eve of Legend by Cheryl Carpinello

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Chapter 1

The Hunt

Guinevere stared into the shadows along the edge of the forest. She could hear Cedwyn shifting from foot to foot beside her, unable to stand still. She sighed, the bow made of sturdy pine in her hand growing heavier like her heart. Her thirteenth Birth Day was in a few days, but she wasn’t excited. Birth Days were supposed to be fun, but not this year. Not for her, not for a princess.

She frowned as Cedwyn adjusted the leather quiver of arrows on his back again. Sometimes, like today, her patience with the seven-year-old was short.

“Guin’ver?”

“Hush!”

“But ...”

“Hush!”

She stamped her boot on the ground, her displeasure clearly showing.

“Cedwyn,” she snapped. “What is so important that you can’t be quiet?”

“I’m hungry, and the bottoms of my trousers are wet. Can’t we go back to the castle?” His face showed his confusion at her tone.

Guinevere realized that she shouldn’t have directed her anger at Cedwyn. It wasn’t his fault. Glancing down at her own clothes, she saw the bottom of her green ankle-length tunic wet with the morning dew. Her stomach chose that moment to begin grumbling. It started as a low vibration but grew louder as if it hadn’t been fed in days. Cedwyn heard it and started giggling. He tried to smother the sound by covering his mouth with his small hand, but he was too late.

Trying to keep from laughing also, Guinevere shook her head. “How are we ever going to shoot a rabbit with all this noise?” She reached down and tousled his blond hair to let him know that she was not serious and to apologize for her crossness. “Let’s try for just ten minutes longer. Then if we find nothing, we’ll go back. Is that all right?”

Cedwyn shook his head, not wanting to make any further noise. She let her eyes move across the blue sky. The English summer sun had barely reached above the far hills when they had first arrived at the forest. Now, it was well on its way in its climb toward the dinner hour, and they hadn’t even had a proper breakfast yet. Cedwyn’s mum was sure to be upset that they had been gone so long.

“Come on,” he whispered. “The only creatures we’ve seen moving have been badgers and Cornish hens. We could of had five bloody hens by now.”

“I told you, it’s good luck to bag a rabbit on the eve of your thirteenth Birth Day,” Guinevere informed him.

Cedwyn studied her face, unsure if she was telling the truth or not. Then his blue eyes widened, and he grabbed her arm as she turned to continue hunting. “Wait a minute! You promised to help me bag a rabbit on the eve of my tenth Birth Day. You said that was lucky!”

She turned to him, her balled fists on her slim hips. “You need to listen closer when I talk to you. I explained the difference be- tween boys and girls. Boys have to seek luck on the eve of their tenth and fifteenth Birth Days. Since girls are naturally luckier than boys, they only have to seek luck once, on the eve of their thirteenth Birth Day.”

Cedwyn eyed her suspiciously, and then his eyes lit up.

“But I thought that the eve was the night before. Your Birth Day isn’t until the day after tomorrow.”

“That’s true, but the eve of something can also be anytime close to the day.”

“Are you sure?”

Guinevere

Buy Now @ Amazon @ Smashwords

Genre - Arthurian Legend

Rating – G

More details about the author and the book

Connect with Cheryl Carpinello on Facebook & Twitter & Goodreads

Website http://www.beyondtodayeducator.com/

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Author Interview – Todd Cheney

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How did you come up with the title?

Well, there are circles of magic, and the seventh one is special. Remember that work by Dante, “The Inferno”? I read some of that and thought that “The Seventh Circle” had a nice ring to it. Alliteration and all. That’s how it started anyway.

Who is your publisher?

Me. Oh, and if you want a paper copy, go through Iuniverse. You can find those through Amazon as well as the Kindle version.

Why did you choose to write this particular book?

I was struck by the insane idea it could change my life forever. Perhaps that’s still true? Or maybe, it already has and I just haven’t realized it yet.

What was the hardest part about writing this book?

Doing it every day while I was in process. The book is written in four parts, which originally were four separate books. However, I decided to make it all one book, sort of a definitive edition, and that’s what its current form is. Also, writing “The Seventh Circle” took about six years because I had to fit it in with everything else that was going on, from college to work and you name it.

How do you promote this book?

Online ads mostly. Very rarely through friends or word of mouth. I also advertised in a magazine earlier this year (2013), however, I wasn’t able to determine the results from that.

How much of the book is realistic?

None of it. It’s a fantasy and that’s what makes it good. I feel sometimes that realism will bog down a good story and if it does, out the window with it!

Can we expect any more books from you in the future?

Maybe. I haven’t decided yet. I had started a Kickstarter project to fund another self-published book that I would write, but I didn’t hit my goal. So it’s just a matter of finding the right idea or motivation now.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

Working in IT somewhere, possibly in a nice condo or small house instead of renting. Maybe having another couple of books as notches on the belt.

The Seventh Circle

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Fantasy

Rating – PG13

More details about the author

Connect with Todd Cheney on Twitter

Website http://www.toddcheney.com

Friday, October 18, 2013

Author Interview – Michael Dismuke

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Where do you get your inspiration from?

I pull my inspiration from the world around me. I watch and listen. I try to imagine things beyond what is presented to me. Technology is one of my main subject matters. I disguise it very well within my stories because to me, the story is the most important aspect of my work. However, the story typically originates from something I’ve seen or heard such as the concept of panopticism. I first learned about it many years ago while in college, and it will be one of the governing themes in my next novel. I tend to take an idea and run with it, sculpting, bending and twisting it into something exciting and different. The idea may become part of the story itself or just an overlying thought. I pull a lot of information from my surrounding environment from topics and themes to names and locations.

Do you plan to publish more books?

Absolutely, I keep an active folder where I jot down all my ideas. Over time I add to the original idea, even changing it if needed. I have several future novels outlined this way that I hope to someday complete. Currently I have four books planned over the next couple of years of which two will be in the Darkness & Daemons series. The current novel I’m working on is Cult of Tattoo, and once I finish that I will complete the Darkness & Daemons trilogy. I have a couple more novels planned later next year but nothing is written in stone at this time.

How and where do you write?

Actually I prefer to use a desk top computer. I never enjoyed using notebooks, too small and uncomfortable when typing. I spend most of my time at my desk pounding away at my keyboard. When I do write, I focus just on writing and begin early in the morning and can write late into the evening. Twelve hours of writing is nothing new to me. I tend to only write when I’m in the mood. Usually when I begin a new project I’m fully prepared and motived to write it, so I tend to keep writing until the manuscript is complete. I’ll spend months if need be at my desk completing whatever project I’m working on without distraction. This is when I slip into my silent mode, nobody will hear from me during this time. That’s why in between books I try to get all I need to get done before beginning the next such as promotions or updating my website. No matter what I’m doing, I’m always at my desk it seems.

Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you?

I measure success first by being able to complete the projects I set out to do. Writing a novel is a major undertaking for anyone to endure. It sounds easy enough, we get an idea and write about it, but it is so much more than just that. Everything has to come together. The story needs to move along swiftly and stick to the storyline. Editing and revisions can be very time consuming and is mentally straining work. Completing the project is a huge accomplishment, publishing and sharing it with others is part of the reward. Any more success after that just adds more icing to the cake. We all would love to become rich and/or famous, but I don’t use that as a measure of success. I take it one milestone at a time, and after each milestone is conquered, a new level of success has been met.

What do you hope people will take away from your writing?

I try to make my writing exciting, in the moment. I want people to feel the danger, the emotion, and the intensity of each scene in the book. I want them to experience the story the same way the characters do – to live it, breathe it, and be part of it. They can try to solve the hidden elements based on what is presented or simply enjoy the ride to completion. I always try to add some sort of twist ending in my work. I feel it takes the story to another level. It also allows readers to try and solve the mystery before it is explained away.

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Genre – SciFi Horror

Rating – PG-13

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Thursday, October 17, 2013

Author Interview – Jim Musgrave

at 3:45 AM 0 comments

What’s your next project?

I’m working on The Steam City Pirates, mystery #4 in the Pat O’Malley Historical Steampunk Mysteries.  I even have some “old salt submariners” who are advising me on the technical aspects of steam-powered submarines.  This is an advantage of being a “Navy brat” and son to a WWII submariner and Pearl Harbor Survivor.

What does love mean to you?

Commitment to one other person (mentally, emotionally and physically).

How long have you been writing?

20+ years

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

Certainly.  Read chapters from the first mystery, Forevermore.

Second mystery, Disappearance at Mount Sinai.

Third mystery, Jane the Grabber.

Can you tell us about your main character?

Please listen to the blog audio on this topic.

How did you develop your plot and characters?

Please read the blog article.

Jim Musgrave

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Genre – Historical Steampunk Mystery

Rating – PG13

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Website http://contempinstruct.com/Forevermore/

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Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Author Interview – Jessica Bell

at 5:00 AM 0 comments

How are you able to be so productive as a writer, a musician, editor, and conference organizer, as well as having a good social media platform, while working full-time?

I’m not usually a person who utilizes lists and schedules. But I certainly have been forced to create them due to all of the projects I juggle. It’s difficult. There’s no denying that fact. But it’s also fun! I enjoy every minute of it.

Basically I do everything in scheduled, short bursts. I get up early to make sure I have one hour to write and one hour to do something else from my list (such as Vine Leaves or retreat organization). I pick and choose depending on priority. During my lunch break, I blog, and spend about half an hour to an hour (depends on how long I can take from work) on social media. After work, I walk the dog, make dinner, maybe go to yoga (I do neglect my laundry, though. Too often). Once that’s done, I’ll spend another hour or so doing something else from my list (if I’m up-to-date on all my tasks, I’ll try and do something creative like writing, or music again). Then I’ll relax in front of the TV, or do something else away from the computer before I go to bed. Then in bed, I’ll read a chapter or two of whatever book I’m reading. Sometimes that may even include critiquing a friend’s manuscript. Reading to me is relaxing and not a chore, so I really don’t feel like that is tackling any sort of task.

The most important thing? Recognizing when I’m too tired and need to take a few days off. If I don’t give myself decent breaks where I don’t do anything, then I very quickly burn out and fall behind.

When and why did you begin writing?

I started writing poetry first. I must have been about eleven, sitting on a rock by the sea in a little place in Greece called Monemvasia. I was so inspired by my surroundings that I needed a way to express it. Not long after, I started writing songs. My mother had decided to sell her twelve-string acoustic guitar to get a bit of extra cash. I saw it sitting by the front door. I think someone was coming over to take a look at it. I remember opening the case and thinking that it just looked so beautiful, and why would Mum want to get rid of it? I think she was in the music room at the time and I interrupted one of her recording sessions to ask about the guitar. When she told me she was selling it, I asked her whether I could have it. She said that I could if I learnt to play. From that day I had that guitar in my hands every single day until I moved to Greece in 2002. I taught myself how to play. The first song I ever wrote was played on one string and sung in a very high-pitched awful voice. I hope that cassette never gets dug up!

How does Greece affect and influence your work?

There is a lot about Greece in my debut novel, String Bridge, but I have to say that Greece had already started to influence me when I was a kid. I must have been about eleven. I remember sitting on a rock by the sea in a little place called Monemvasia. I was so inspired by my surroundings that I needed a way to express it. This is when I started writing poetry. In the end (well, beginning), Greece is what sparked my passion for words.

Also, I would never have got my first job as an editor if I hadn’t moved here. As I said above, I make a living as an editor/writer of English Language Teaching materials. There is no need for this sort of thing in an English speaking country. So I guess, I have Greece to thank for giving me the opportunity to pursue this career path. If I had have remained in Australia, I probably would have focused more on my music.

What genre are you most comfortable writing?

Contemporary fiction. Realistic. Not into fantasy or paranormal at all.

What made you want to be a writer?

I just realized one day that I couldn’t live without it. And figured, if I’m going to be writing all the time, I might as well try to get published.

Do you intend to make writing a career?

Absolutely. But I try to be realistic about it. I do it because I can’t not do it. Not to make money.

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Genre – Non-Fiction / Writing Skills Reference

Rating – PG

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Connect with Jessica Bell on FacebookTwitter

Blog http://thealliterativeallomorph.blogspot.com/

 

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