Friday, July 31, 2015

Fallback by Lori Whitwam - Spotlight and Giveaway

BBT_TourBanner_Fallback copy

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Lori will be awarding one prize pack consisting of $25 Amazon/BN GC, plus a signed print copy of Fallback, as well as bookmarks and magnets (international) to one randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

MediaKit_BookCover_FallbackAfter being rescued from a brutal band of marauders, Ellen Hale rebuilt her life in the fortified neighborhood that became her home. A heartbreaking decision and devastating loss pushed her to become a fierce fighter, because weakness only got you and those you loved killed.

Now her community is facing a deadly threat, and Ellen has another choice to make.

Ellen volunteers as a member of fallback team three, tasked with establishing a temporary refuge for their citizens in the event their community is overrun by the enemy. As the danger intensifies, she and her adopted sister, Melissa, set off with the rest of their team on the road trip from hell.

Their mission is cloaked in secrecy, but suspicions of a traitor arise.

Something is affecting the zombies’ migration patterns, and when blacksmith Tyler Garrett is discovered trapped in a farmhouse, the team refuses to trust him. But Ellen believes his story, and it’s not just because of his rugged, blond good looks and soft-spoken manner—his skills can greatly benefit their team.

As the team struggles to reach the fallback, previously secure locations are overrun, and their chances of success seem remote. With the likelihood of a traitor nearly certain, and the lives of everyone she loves at risk, Ellen must figure out who to trust before the traitor—or the zombies—destroy them all.

Is there a spy among the fallback team,or is there another threat lurking in the Kentucky hills?

Enjoy an excerpt: Marcus took a quick peek around the doorframe, then stepped cautiously through, Anton close on his heels, rifle in the ready position. I stepped around the cluster of weapons and followed.

The room contained an un-made bed—presumably the source of the sheet—along with a dresser and a round side table, beside which the chair barricade had most likely sat. In the center of the room stood a tall, blond man with his arms extended straight out to his sides. I estimated him around 6’1”, and his worn t-shirt clung to broad shoulders and thick biceps. His hair must be long, as it was drawn back and secured behind his head. Jeans hung on lean hips and a short beard followed the curve of his jaw.

Stop staring, Ellen. He could be about to try to kill you.

“Name,” Marcus barked, machete in his hand, while Anton kept the gun pointed directly at the man’s face.

“Ty,” the man said, his jaw tight and eyes flat with anger. “Tyler Garrett.”

Lowering his machete but not sheathing it, Marcus asked, “Where you from, Mr. Garrett?”

Tyler dropped his head back for a second before looking at us, gaze lingering on me before returning to Marcus. “Listen, can I put my hands down? My weapons are in the hall, and I did go to a lot of effort to let you know what was in here without making a racket and drawing more of those dead bastards.”

Marcus made a circular motion with the tip of his blade. “Turn around, real slow. If I don’t see anything worrisome, we’ll talk.”

Tyler started a cautious turn to his right, proving my hunch about long hair correct. Anton never lowered his gun. As Tyler’s right hip rotated into view, Anton roared, “Knife!” The butt of the rifle was braced at his shoulder and his finger tightening around the trigger in an instant.


About the Author:
Lori spent her early years reading books in a tree in northern West Virginia. The 1980s and 90s found her and her husband moving around the Midwest, mainly because it was easier to move than clean the apartment. After seventeen frigid years in Minnesota, she fled to coastal North Carolina in 2013. She will never leave, and if you try to make her, she will hurt you.

She has worked in public libraries, written advertising copy for wastewater treatment equipment, and managed a holistic veterinary clinic. Her current day job, conducted from her World Headquarters and Petting Zoo (her couch) is as Managing Editor for Limitless Publishing, as well as editing for a select list of indie author.

Her dogs are a big part of her life, and she has served or held offices in Golden Retriever and Great Pyrenees rescues, a humane society, a county kennel club, and her own chapter of Therapy Dogs International.

She has been a columnist and feature writer for auto racing and pet publications, and won the Dog Writers Association of America’s Maxwell Award for a series of humor essays.

Parents of a grown son, Lori and her husband were high school sweethearts, and he manages to love her in spite of herself. Some of his duties include making sure she always has fresh coffee and safe tires, trying to teach her to use coupons, and convincing the state police to spring her from house arrest in her hotel room in time for a very important concert. That last one only happened once—so far—but she still really, really appreciates it.

Email: ripleygold@gmail.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/loriauthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ripleygold
Website: http://www.loriwhitwam.com
Publisher: http://www.limitlesspublishing.net/authors/lori-whitwam/
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Lori-Whitwam/e/B00QR5RPXC/
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/lori-whitwam
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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Hungry as a Wolf by Elizabeth Einspanier - Cover Reveal and Giveaway

MBB_TourBanner_HungryAsAWolf copy

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Elizabeth will award a $25 Amazon/BN gift card to a randomly drawn commenter. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

MediaKit_BookCover_HungryAsAWolfWolf Cowrie is back in his second adventure! In the Black Hills of the Dakota Territory in 1865, tensions run high between white settlers looking for gold and the Sioux people who consider this region their holy ground. When Wolf is hired to find out what happened to the workers of a mining outpost in the area, the general theory in Goldwater is that they were slaughtered by the Sioux. Wolf discovers something far more sinister lurking in the Black Hills, an ancient evil whose unending hunger drives sane men to ghoulish extremes.

Enjoy an excerpt:

Smythe greeted the two men with a horrified look and a startled oath.

“Yar Doc is dead,” Wolf said. “Again. This time I think he might stay down. Ken we come in?”

Smythe backed up, still staring. “You’re… you’re covered in…” he managed to squeak.

“It ain’t mine,” Wolf said, wiping his feet on the welcome mat before walking into the front hall. “Now go get yar master so’s we can give him the good news. And… I need a basin of water to wash up.”

The servant returned a minute later with a pitcher of water and a basin, and Wolf endeavored to scrub his hands and face until his flesh stopped crawling. He was halfway through when Hartford uttered a syllable that made his blood run cold.

“Ma’am.”

Wolf looked up, gory water dripping down his hands and chin, to find Susannah in the doorway. She was staring at him in a mixture of horror and concern, and he was acutely aware of the results of an exploded skull still clinging to him. He swallowed hard, wishing fervently that the ground would just swallow him up right there.

“Miss Twohill,” he greeted her. “I… I took care of the problem ya had running around. He won’t get any more of the townsfolk. Don’t you worry none.”

“What… what happened?” she asked. “Are you…? Did he…?”

“No,” he said. “I ain’t bit. This is just… well... we, ah… blew his... brains out.” He glanced at Hartford for assistance, but the other man was steadfastly looking out the window. The message was clear: he was staying out of this conversation.


About the Author: MediaKit_AuthorPhoto_HungryAsAWolfElizabeth Einspanier is the self-published author of the Weird Western novella Sheep’s Clothing and the upcoming sci-fi romance novel Heart of Steel. Her short stories have been published in Down in the Dirt and Dark Fire Fiction. She is a member of the St. Louis Writer’s Guild and an associate member of the Horror Writers of America. She lives in St. Louis, but frequently spends extended periods in worlds of her own creation.

Website: http://elizabetheinspanier.com
Blog: http://calliopeskiss.blogspot.com/
Twitter: http://calliopeskiss.blogspot.com/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+ElizabethEinspanier
Amazon Author Page: http://amazon.com/author/elizabetheinspanier

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Deacon by Cheryl Douglas - Spotlight and Giveaway

BBT_TourBanner_Deacon copy

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Cheryl Douglas will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

MediaKit_BookCover_DeaconWhen Deacon Sarkis sets his sights on the gorgeous young model gracing the pages of his glossy catalogue, he knows he has to have her. One problem. She’s not available. But that won’t stop Deacon. He’s a man used to getting what he wants and he wants Mia. Mia is stunned when she receives an email from the elusive billionaire who owns the lingerie company she models for. He tells her he’s intrigued. He’s not the only one. But she knows she’d be a fool to throw away an eight year relationship for a brief affair with the head honcho. He doesn’t do relationships and she doesn’t do casual sex. It seems they’re at an impasse. Who will come out on top in this battle of wills? The dominant one or the woman intent on teaching him the meaning of submission?


Enjoy the excerpt:

With the launch party at the forefront of my mind, I made my way downstairs to wardrobe.

Half a dozen women turned, gaping at me. I rarely made personal selections for my models, but I didn’t think my presence warranted such stunned silence.

“Good afternoon, ladies,” I said, trying to hide my amusement.

“Hello, Mr. Starkis,” one of the women stammered. “How can we help you?”

“I’m here about the fashion show this weekend.”

She gestured toward several hanging racks. “Everything’s taken care of, sir. You’re welcome to have a look at the samples. They’re right over there.”

“I’d like to see what Mia Barnes will be wearing.”

Two women exchanged curious glances before one said, “Of course, Mr. Starkis. I’ll get those selections right away.”

I barely noticed the gorgeous models milling about half-naked, being fitted for the upcoming show. Many were trying to get my attention, smiling or giving me sultry looks as they met my eyes in the full-length mirror. They had been hand-selected for their talent and beauty, but none were Mia, therefore none held my attention for long.

“Here they are,” the harried, middle-aged woman with the blond bob and pixie skirt said. “I think these will look fabulous on Mia.” She laughed. “I’ve worked in this business a long time, and I can tell you it’s rare to find a model who looks amazing in everything she tries on. Most have some flaw they wish to hide, but not our Mia.”

I smiled tightly. Our Mia? Wrong. She was my Mia. “I’m sure you’re right, but that one won’t work,” I said, pointing at the lavender silk bra and matching panties on the white satin hanger. “Next.”

Looking stricken, the woman said, “But—”

“It’s lovely…?”

“Barbara.”

“It’s lovely, Barbara. Just not what I have in mind for Mia. May I see the next one?”

She held up a black lace bustier with a matching thong, looking apprehensive. She had every reason to be nervous. The only time I expected to see Mia parading around wearing that was when she was modeling it for me.

“I want her to model the bridal collection.” I knew that was sexy yet demure.

“The bridal collection?” Barbara seemed stunned by my request.

“Is there a problem?”

“Um, no, but with Eleni’s darker coloring, I thought she would be perfect for the bridal collection.”

“You thought wrong,” I said, pinning her with a stare that brooked no argument. “Switch them. Eleni can wear these.” I gestured toward the pieces Mia had been slotted to wear. “Mia will model the bridal collection.”

“Of course, Mr. Starkis. Anything you say, sir.”


About the Author:MediaKit_AuthorPhoto_DeaconWhen one door closes, another one opens. I closed the door to my business for the last time in 2011, which left me with a decision. What now? Find another location and move my nutrition business, go to work for someone else, or take a chance on my dream? I chose the latter and I’ve never looked back!


I’ve always loved reading and writing, but it wasn’t until I jumped in with both feet and decided writing would be my career, instead of just a hobby, that my muse woke up from her deep slumber.

It was like someone flipped a switch inside my head and stories just came pouring out. At the end of the day, I would often look at the keyboard and wonder, ‘Who the heck wrote that? ‘Cause I’m pretty sure it wasn’t me!’

I don’t write books. I tell stories, or rather, I allow my characters to tell their stories through me. I’m not a plotter, never have been, never will be. Why? Because I have no idea how the story will evolve and it’s not my place to manipulate it. My job is to get to know these characters, figure out what makes them tick, then follow their journey wherever it takes me.

When I’m not writing, I’m daydreaming. Thankfully, I have an understanding husband and son who know I’ll re-join the land of the living just as soon as my muse decides it’s quitting time. I don’t work for myself. I work for her. She’s the boss. And I’m okay with that.

Website: http://cheryldouglasbooks.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cheryldouglasbooks
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CherylDouglasNN
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5761770.Cheryl_Douglas

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Monday, July 20, 2015

Stealing Second by Alison Packard - Spotlight and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Alison will be awarding a $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Katherine Whitton doesn’t purposely avoid men and relationships, but she doesn’t mind that side effect of immersing herself in her job with the San Francisco Blaze. Years ago she was betrayed by her one true love, and she’s never fully recovered, though she’s tried by building a new life in a city she loves.

It’s taken seventeen years for Tom Morgan to get over Katie—Katherine now. Sober now and faced with the incredible opportunity to manage the Blaze, he thinks he’ll finally be able to handle working with this beautiful woman without falling to pieces…as long as she doesn’t get too close.

A crisis with the team's star pitcher forces Tom and Katherine to put in long hours together. Years of animosity melt away as the sexual tension between them ignites. But it’ll take more than scorching kisses to avoid the wreckage of the past. And neither Tom nor Katie are sure they’re ready to trust each other or risk their hearts for a second chance at happiness.


Enjoy an excerpt:

Striding through the locker room portion of the clubhouse, Katherine ignored the players in various stages of undress and made her way down the long hallway that led to the staff offices. When she reached the last office on the right, she crossed the threshold, found the edge of the door with her palm and with the force of her ire, slammed it shut.

A perverse sense of satisfaction filled her as Tom Morgan visibly flinched and jerked his head up from the open laptop sitting on his scarred oak desk. In the space of a few seconds, his blue-green eyes went from startled to annoyed. No surprise there; it wasn’t like she hadn’t been on the receiving end of that particular reaction before.

“You always did know how to make an entrance.” His lazy drawl still held a hint of Texas and never failed to heighten her pulse. A fact that irritated her beyond measure. “What’s got your thong in a twist this time?”

“Rick Taylor.” Katherine moved forward but didn’t sit down in the chair opposite his desk. She didn’t plan on staying long. And how did he know she wore a thong anyway? “Why am I the last one to know he’s thinking about resuming his baseball career?”

Tom leaned back in his leather chair, a ghost of a smile hovering on his lips. “I doubt you’re the last person to know, and I only found out two days ago.”

“Why didn’t you call me immediately? If Rick is trying to make a comeback, my department needs to be involved.”

“It isn’t my place to call you. It’s Doug’s.” His enigmatic eyes briefly skimmed over her body, then lifted. There was no indication whether he liked what he saw. Not that it mattered. Not anymore. “Besides, aren’t you the one who said you preferred I didn’t contact you after hours?”

“When it comes to anything media-related, I’m on call 24/7. You know that.”

Tom shrugged, drawing her attention to his broad shoulders. The Blaze T-shirt he wore didn’t do much to disguise his muscular upper body. Although he didn’t play anymore, he was still in excellent shape. Of course, he wouldn’t be one of those ex-athletes who let themselves go after their playing days were over. He was still a perfect specimen. Not that she spent a lot of time thinking about him or his body.

Liar.

Okay, fine. Maybe she thought about his body once in a while. But only because it was an involuntary response.

“I assumed Doug would call you as soon as he got off the phone with me. Rick hasn’t made it official. There’s not much we can do until he does.”

Katherine gave him a grudging nod. He was right, but she didn’t have to like it. By all accounts, patience had never been one of her virtues. Starting from the moment she’d arrived into the world—three weeks premature. “I understand that. But I need to be kept abreast of the situation. I assume if he does intend to come back, he’s going to one of our minor league affiliates?”

“At the moment, that’s hard to predict,” Tom said. “We have no idea what his fitness level is. He’s basically missed two full seasons. If he’s in top shape and his skills haven’t diminished, he could be considered for one of the non-roster invitee slots at spring training with the Blaze. If not, he’ll start out in the minors. At what level would depend on him.”

“I’d appreciate it if you’d keep me in the loop. Due to the circumstances, this is going to be a big story. I’d like some advance warning so I can prep my staff and make sure we keep the media circus as far away from him as possible.”

“Anything for you…Katie.”

“Don’t call me that,” she snapped, annoyed that he seemed incapable of using her given name whenever they were alone together.

“Sorry.” The grin that played at the corners of his mouth indicated he wasn’t sorry at all. “Force of habit.”

She narrowed her eyes and gave him her best glacial stare. Not that it would do any good. As always, Tom would do as he damn well pleased. “Break the habit.”


About the Author:
Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, Alison now lives in Southern Nevada where she’s still getting used to the blistering summers and the slot machines in every grocery store.

When not working at the day job that pays the bills, keeps a roof over her head, and supports her book and chocolate habits, Alison spends most of her free time writing. But when she takes a break, she enjoys reading, watching movies, and spending time with her family and friends.

Website: http://alisonpackard.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Alison-Packard-Author/368976796492227?ref=hl
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Alleyfics

Buy the book at Amazon.

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Friday, July 17, 2015

The Truth: Diary of a Gutsy Tween by Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein - Q&A and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Barbara will be awarding $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

If someone were writing a story about you, what would your blurb say?

Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein has always been a pathfinder in Positive Psychology, focusing most often on girls, tweens and teens so that they can recognize what is most special about themselves and gain courage, self-confidence and resiliency by utilizing their talents, strengths and potential. She herself has become an icon figure for women of all ages. She has been a psychologist and educator for over 35 years and is proud of it. Serving society with one's wisdom and knowledge never gets stale. In fact it helps us stay healthy and happy. As a women who is as active with her Enchanted Self mission now as ever, utilizing each new technology as it comes about, currently video is one of her favorites, (find her on You Tube at Barbara Becker Holstein). She reminds women of all ages to have the courage to stay with one' dreams and aspirations.

Would you tell us a little about your newest release that isn't in the blurb?

The Truth, Diary of a Gutsy Tween is part of a long chain of events. It was really birthed over ten years ago when I wrote a book that ended up unpublished in which a young girl met up with her adult self and a long conversation of shared wisdom, humor and love happened between them. And now the chain of events is moving on again. This time there is a play 'The Locket' about the girl which has had staged readings three times and hopefully a full production soon, and now in production is a short film about the girl. This is a fabulous and fun adventure!

What was your favorite scene to write in this story?

My favorite scene is in the last pages where the girl finally realizes that she has her own way of holding on to the best of herself as she grows older and she is no longer afraid of growing up. What could be a better moment in life?

If you could trade places with one of your characters, who would it be and why?

I would probably choose Angela, the girl's best friend because she has a more fun household and a mother who really listens to her. Also, she is a little lighter in spirit than The Girl. I may write a book where Angela is the main character. It would be fun to have her come alive and we would learn more about the world that both of them live in.

"I hate Angela and I wish she would move away tomorrow!" "I get so worried when I hear my parents fighting at night." "My mother thinks my crush is silly. I know I am in love!" "I have so many questions about growing up. Who will answer them?" "I feel so awful when Jake makes fun of me." "When I grow up I going to remember how to have fun with my kids and never look away." Growing up is tough. Adults don't always understand you (even though they were once kids), and children today face increasing pressure to be, look, or act a certain way. Written in the voice of a girl on the cusp of becoming a teenager, The Truth provides young girls with an opportunity to see how a girl, who is in many ways like themselves, handles her toughest problems and most personal thoughts. Each new page brings forth a discussion to help girls handle everyday problems: How do you survive a bully? How do you handle a crush on a boy? What can you do about relentless teasing by your peers? What really matters as you grow older?

In a positive and supportive diary-entry format, Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein encourages tween girls to carry the most precious parts of themselves into adulthood. A great book for mothers and daughters to read together, The Truth is aimed to improve communication, understanding, and self-esteem for young girls as they enter the rocky road of teenager-dom.


Enjoy an excerpt:

Date: July 7

Dear Diary:

I feel so lonely. I can’t believe my parents made us move. Don’t they understand how awful it is for me? I don’t have anyone to share secrets with. I talk to Angela on the phone, but it isn’t the same. Sometimes when I’m on the phone with her I get the feeling that she is on her computer at the same time or maybe just thinking about other stuff. I don’t feel that closeness with her anymore. I want to feel it, but I don’t know how. I’m afraid to ask her if she is playing a game on the computer or chatting on Facebook at the same time as she’s on the phone with me.

The only good thing that happened is I asked Angela if she wants to send selfies back and forth to each other. My phone is old and I don’t have FaceTime, but I can still take pictures and send them to her. She loved the idea, so I spent hours yesterday sending her pictures of me in different rooms in my house and in the backyard, too. It was a lot of fun. I dressed up as if I was putting on a play and each room was a new scene. I wore a velvet scarf and one of my mom’s fancy hats and put on an old long petticoat I used to dress up in as a kid and then I went outside and stood on the swing that is hanging from a tree. It was hard to keep the swing still enough to get a good Selfie, but finally I did, and I sent it to Angela. She sent back a selfie of herself dressed up like a Flapper girl from the 1920s, posing with a long stick as if it was a cigarette in a holder. We laughed and laughed on the phone, and it was the best I have felt since we moved. The best part was that if felt like we were together again even though we are apart!


I have been a positive psychologist in private practice for the past thirty years. In the course of working with my clients, I originated the idea of THE ENCHANTED SELF(R), a positive psychology therapy where I teach people how to recognize and utilize their strengths, talents, skills and even lost potential. I have developed a number of methods, including using our memories to rediscover what is right about ourselves and our lives, rather than what went wrong, helping people to overcome adversity, experience positive emotions and live the good life!

Since developing this concept, I've been able to use many tools to bring the Enchanted Self to everyone, particularly women and girls. I've written many books, starting with THE ENCHANTED SELF, A Positive Therapy, and then Recipes for Enchantment, The Secret Ingredient is YOU! My books for girls are very popular, as they are great fictional reads and also help deal with many of the questions that trouble kids as they move into the tween and teen years. The Truth, Diary of a Gutsy Tween and Secrets, Diary of a Gutsy Teen are the first two books in this series.

I really love to teach and educate about happiness and how to benefit from positive psychology in ways that let us lead lives of meaning and happiness. You can find me all over the place on the web. In particular, www.enchantedself.com, www.thetruthforgirls.com, on Facebook at Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein: Psychologist & Author, on Pinterest at http://www.pinterest.com/barbarabeckerho/ and on You Tube. Just look for me on You Tube via Barbara Becker Holstein.

Amazon: www.amazon.com/Barbara-Becker-Holstein/e/B001JXEZ8U/

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/barbara-becker-holstein/2493846

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Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Madison's Song by Christine Amsden - Spotlight and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Christine Amsden is awarding a randomly drawn commenter via Rafflecopter a $10 Amazon/BN gift card. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Her voice is enchanting; his soul is black…

Madison Carter has been terrified of Scott Lee since the night he saved her from an evil sorcerer – then melted into a man-eating monster before her eyes. The werewolf is a slave to the moon, but Madison’s nightmares are not.

Despite her fears, when Madison’s brother, Clinton, is bitten by a werewolf, she knows there is only one man who can help. A man who frightens her all the more because even in her nightmares, he also thrills her.

Together for the first time since that terrible night, Scott and Madison drive to Clinton’s home only to discover that he’s vanished. Frantic now, Madison must overcome her fears and uncover hidden strengths if she hopes to save him. And she’s not the only one fighting inner demons. Scott’s are literal, and they have him convinced that he will never deserve the woman he loves.

*Stand-alone companion to the Cassie Scot series

Enjoy an excerpt:

Her head rested perfectly atop his shoulder. She wasn't a short woman and he wasn't a tall man. He only had three inches on her, but it put her at the perfect height for his embrace. She fit him. Her beautiful body, soft and full, fit him perfectly too. This wasn't a woman who would break at his touch.

He wanted to kiss her. He wanted more than that, but just now he wanted to feel her lips against his. He had refrained the night before, glorying in her touch alone, forcing himself to let that be all he needed. But today he wasn't sure it would be enough. Today he felt desperate and unsure.

He placed a finger under her chin and lifted it slightly. Her eyes met his in question, but he didn't answer in words. He answered by settling his lips over hers in a soft, gentle brushing of skin against skin. Then he backed away slightly.

Her eyes were closed and her lips slightly parted. She looked a bit dazed and very unsure, but she wasn't pushing him away. He could smell her growing interest and it made his heart swell with newfound hope and need.

He brushed his lips against hers again before deepening the caress. She returned the kiss, a little inexpertly but with all the passion he'd known she possessed. She opened her mouth to him.




About the Author:
Christine Amsden has been writing fantasy and science fiction for as long as she can remember. She loves to write and it is her dream that others will be inspired by this love and by her stories. Speculative fiction is fun, magical, and imaginative but great speculative fiction is about real people defining themselves through extraordinary situations. Christine writes primarily about people and relationships, and it is in this way that she strives to make science fiction and fantasy meaningful for everyone.

At the age of 16, Christine was diagnosed with Stargardt’s Disease, a condition that affects the retina and causes a loss of central vision. She is now legally blind, but has not let this slow her down or get in the way of her dreams.

In addition to writing, Christine teaches workshops on writing at Savvy Authors. She also does some freelance editing work.

Christine currently lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, Austin, who has been her biggest fan and the key to her success. They have two beautiful children.

http://christineamsden.com/wordpress
https://tinyletter.com/christineamsden
http://christineamsden.com/wordpress/?page_id=200
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Christine-Amsden-Author-Page/127673027288664?ref=hl
https://twitter.com/ChristineAmsden
http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1030664.Christine_Amsden
https://plus.google.com/u/0/117845642477854934607/posts
http://www.amazon.com/Christine-Amsden/e/B001JOXSIW/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1434059504&sr=8-1
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/christine-amsden?store=allproducts&keyword=christine+amsden

Buy the book at Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

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Tuesday, July 14, 2015

The Gift of Maybe by Allison Carmen - Q&A and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. One randomly drawn commenter will receive an autographed copy of the book, and another randomly drawn commenter will receive a $25 Amazon/BN GC. Prizes are awarded via rafflecopter. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Welcome to It's Raining Books, Allison. Why do you write in your genre? What draws you to it?

I was inspired to write this book to help people find hope and possibilities during uncertain times. If we fear the unknown, it is sometimes hard to find the courage and strength to pursue our dreams and change our lives. We see the unknown as another obstacle standing in our way. Yet as we start to embrace the idea of Maybe as explained in the book, we see that the unknown is a place where new possibilities exist and our lives can be different. We understand that just because we don’t know the answer today, it doesn’t mean things will be negative or not work out in the future. We open up to thoughts such as: Maybe things will get better; Maybe a new opportunity will present itself soon; or Maybe we are exactly where we need to be in this moment. Maybe is a perspective that carries us through the twists and turns of life with the hope that we can still have the life that we desire. Based on the positive response from many readers, I believe the book is helping people shift their relationship with uncertainty and find more hope and opportunity in their lives.

What research is required?

I wrote from my own life experiences and those of my clients with the mindset of Maybe. Maybe helps me with my stress and worry every day and gives me hope that more is possible in my life.

Name one thing you learned from your book.

Uncertainty can feel dark and scary. But only because we forgot that everything new and beautiful in our lives will be born from the unknown.

Do you have any odd or interesting writing quirks, habits or superstitions?

I need to read out loud to edit my work.

Are you a plotter or pantser?

It depends on my mood and what I am doing that day. I guess I am both.

Look to your right – what’s sitting there?

The book Real Happiness by Sharon Saltzberg

Anything new coming up from you? What?

I am writing a book about using the philosophy of Maybe in parenting. Maybe has enabled me to parent with less stress and more ease. I am able to recognize that my children’s lives often are not determined by one moment and, even during tough times, Maybe everything will still be okay. Of course there are imperative moments when our kids must listen to us, like taking a particular medicine if they are sick or mandatory safety provisions during certain activities. Yet much of what we believe is 
”imperative” is a story that we are writing in our minds making us believe that there is only one way for our children to have joyful and successful lives. As we embrace Maybe, we remember parenting is a long road and our children’s well-being and futures are always filled with more opportunities and possibilities even when we can’t see them in the moment.

Do you have a question for our readers?

What makes you worry? Are you afraid of uncertainty? Do you think the mindset of Maybe could help you?

Allison Carmen spent many years fighting a powerful addiction. It wasn’t drugs, alcohol or fame. It was an addiction to certainty. If she didn’t know what the future would bring – and who does? – she felt anxious and afraid. This decades-long struggle followed her through college, marriage, parenthood, and a successful law career. While everything seemed fine from the outside, Allison was in a constant battle that was unwinnable, sapping her energy, attention, and spirit. Until the day she discovered The Gift of Maybe.

Maybe is a simple yet powerful philosophy that has transformed Allison’s life, and the life of her many clients (now that she has ditched her legal career and has become a successful life coach). The message is this: In the face of uncertainty, Maybe opens your mind and heart. It creates a little space for hope. It allows you to take a deep breath, stay in the present, and forge your own path.

Many things in life are beyond our control, but the mindset of Maybe presents a simple, powerful way to stay connected to what’s possible, and work to make it happen. It is just one change of perspective, but Maybe it changes everything!

Enjoy an excerpt:

You may be wondering how something as easy as thinking or saying the word “Maybe” can have the kind of impact I am describing. That is precisely the beauty of Maybe. The idea of Maybe is so easy to apply, and at the same time it can have a profound effect on whatever part of your life you choose to apply it to. Whether you have been recently laid off from your job or you are having health concerns or money problems, whether you are looking for love or success or just looking to live life with less emotional pain, the philosophy of Maybe provides you with a tool to help you find your way. It helps you alleviate stress or worry, helps you embrace the uncertainty in your life as an opportunity, helps you enjoy the present, and helps you live with less emotional suffering. It is a mind-set that can influence all aspects of your life, a strategy you can use when life throws you an unexpected curveball.

As you experience the mind-set of Maybe, it will take on a meaning unique to you. Maybe creates a space where so much more is possible. Maybe becomes the constant that never lets you down.

Maybe is not a plan or a story; it is the offer of an unfolding experience. Embracing Maybe is a process, one that evolves and will continue to improve your life in new and exciting ways. For this reason, the true power and nuance of Maybe will come to you outside the pages of this book, when you experience your first moment of joy and vigor in the face of uncertainty.

Maybe is just one change of perspective, but it is one that can change the very direction of your life. So, let’s take a journey together into the land of Maybe, and may we all find a life of peace, happiness, hope, and success. Just Maybe!


About the Author:
Allison Carmen is a business consultant and life coach and the author of The Gift of Maybe, a book offering hope and possibility in uncertain times. Allison is a blogger for The Huffington Post and Psychology Today and she has been featured on Psychcentral.com, InnerSelf.com, LifeHacker.com, EnergyTimes.com, bookcountry.com and examiner.com. She lives in New York City.

Twitter is @giftofmaybe https://twitter.com/giftofmaybe
Website is http://allisoncarmen.com/
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Allison-Carmen/240188549364970?focus_composer=true
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/allison-carmen/
http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-gift-maybe

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Center of Gravity by Laura McNeill - Spotlight and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Laura McNeill will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Her whole life, Ava Carson has been sure of one thing: she doesn’t measure up to her mother’s expectations. So when Mitchell Carson sweeps into her life with his adorable son, the ready-made family seems like a dream come true.

In the blink of an eye, she’s married, has a new baby, and life is grand.

Or is it?

When her picture-perfect marriage begins unraveling at the seams, Ava convinces herself she can fix it. It's temporary. It’s the stress. It’s Mitchell’s tragic history of loss.

If only Ava could believe her own excuses.

Mitchell is no longer the charming, thoughtful man she married. He grows more controlling by the day, revealing a violent jealous streak. His behavior is recklessly erratic, and the unanswered questions about his past now hint at something far more sinister than Ava can stomach. Before she can fit the pieces together, Mitchell files for divorce and demands full custody of their boys.

Fueled by fierce love for her children and aided by Graham Thomas, a new attorney in town —Ava takes matters into her own hands, digging deep into the past. But will finding the truth be enough to beat Mitchell at his own game?

Center of Gravity weaves a chilling tale, revealing the unfailing and dangerous truth that things—and people—are not always what they seem.

Enjoy an excerpt:

Every day, somebody, somewhere, needs a hero.

Think about it. The mom lifting a two-ton truck to save her son after a car crash. The dad who can't swim—who jumps in the water anyway—to pull out his drowning daughter. The guy who kicks down a door of a burning house because his friend’s kid is trapped inside.

All of a sudden, getting hurt doesn’t matter. There’s no thinking twice. Just a gut pumping, jump-off-the-cliff, no turning back.

For these regular people thrown into crazy life or death situations, there's one big hero moment. Then, they go back to work, their jobs, or school.

And it's someone else's turn.

I’m only in the third grade, but I’ve been waiting for my chance to be a hero my whole life.

An ear-piercing shriek yanks me back to the school playground.

“Emma Dunlop’s stuck up in the oak tree.” My best friend Mo runs up, breathless. He bends over, chest heaving in the humidity, and puts both hands on his knees. “She’s freaking out.”

Shielding my eyes, I grit my teeth. The tree’s as big as a monster, with twisted brown branches that extend like arms, thick emerald leaves at the fingertips. Spanish moss hangs from the lowest limbs, the ends curling like a snake’s tail.

Though I can’t see her through the tangle of limbs, I picture Emma hanging on tight to the rough bark. Shaking. Really scared. Trying not to look down at the brick-red clay.

I run a hand through my hair.

She’s in trouble. And I know why.

Legend says a man’s head—a genie—is hidden in the leaves and branches. Weird, rough pieces of wood make up his face. He has knots for eyes. A bump for his chin. It’s for real. I’ve seen it.

All the kids know the story. If you touch the genie’s nose, your wish will come true. Of course, my dad doesn’t believe in stuff like that and says I shouldn’t either. He’s a Ph.D. And does an important job at the college. So I guess he knows what he’s talking about.

But that’s not going to save Emma now. I start to jog, then full-out sprint. At the base of the tree, I push through a crowd of my classmates. Third and fourth graders, gaping, heads tilted, mouths open like baby birds. When I reach the trunk, I squint up and find Emma’s brand-new saddle shoes dangling high above me. I see pale, thin legs, and the crisp edges of her plaid jumper. And despite everyone talking and whispering, I hear Emma crying. It’s a whimpering wail, like a hurt animal.

“Y’all go on back inside now. Go back to class,” my teacher says, pushing the group back an inch or two. I end up jostled next to the school librarian, who’s holding her hands like she's praying.

Our eyes meet. Mine flicker away.

“Don’t even think about it, Jack,” she warns.

But I kick off my shoes anyway and grab hold of the trunk. Deep down in my belly, I make myself act like I'm not scared. I don’t like heights or even hanging upside down from monkey bars. But Emma needs me.


About the Author:
After six years behind the anchor desk at two CBS affiliates, Laura moved to the Alabama Gulf Coast to raise her family. Her accolades in broadcasting include awards from the Associated Press, including Best News Anchor and Best Specialized Reporter.

Laura works at Spring Hill College as the school’s web content and social media manager and is active in her community—participating in fundraisers for the American Cancer Society, Ronald McDonald House, and Providence Hospital’s Festival of Flowers.

Laura was recently awarded a 2-book deal with Thomas Nelson Publishing, a division of HarperCollins. Her novel, Center of Gravity, set in Mobile, Ala., will be published in July of 2015. Laura is represented by Elizabeth Winick Rubenstein, president of McIntosh and Otis literary agency in New York. Her writing awards include those from William Faulkner-Wisdom Creative Writing Competition, Writer’s Digest, RWA, and the Eric Hoffer competition.

She holds a master’s degree in journalism from The Ohio State University and a bachelor’s degree in English from Clarion University of Pennsylvania. She is currently pursuing a second master’s degree in interactive technology from the University of Alabama. She is a native of Upstate New York and currently resides near the Alabama Gulf Coast with her two children.

http://lauramcneill.com/
http://lauramcneill.com/layouts/blog/
https://www.facebook.com/lauramcneillauthor?ref=hl
https://twitter.com/LauraMcNeillBks
https://www.pinterest.com/lauram052
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5280308.Lauren_Clark
https://instagram.com/dixiegirlwriter

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The Last Dreamgirl by Shane Hayes - Spotlight and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Shane Hayes will be awarding a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.
For every man there’s a girl who grips his imagination and his heart as no other girl ever did or will. She may be in her teens or a mature woman. He responds to her as a boy to a girl. Whether she comes early in his life or late, there is a throne in his subconscious that she takes possession of, without trying, often without wanting to.The image he forms of her reigns there in perpetuity, even if she has left his life, or this life. Her enchantment never fades or fails, and he is never immune to it. She may not be for him the last wife or paramour, but she is the last dreamgirl.

Enjoy an excerpt:

"Look, my mother’s worried sick. I need to go home.”

“Is home such a happy place?”

“Yes!” she lied.

“Then why do you walk through the streets crying every night?”

“I don’t!”

“You do! I saw you twice this week. That’s why I picked you.”

“What? Picked me? What do you mean ‘picked’ me?”

“That’s why you’re here—because you looked so unhappy.”

She squinted at him like he was mad. “Are you saying you brought me here to cheer me up?”

“No, not that exactly. I wanted your company. A girl’s company. A girl who was kind of pretty and… unhappy. You were both.”

She looked confused and angry. “What do you know about my unhappiness?”

“Not much,” he said, “but I know it’s there. And it’s a little like mine. You seem very shy. People scare you. You’re not comfortable with them. You can’t talk to them. Your nose is always in a book. You read sometimes even in the schoolyard. You hang on to the edge of a crowd, but you’re not really part of it. Like me, you don’t seem to have any friends. When I saw you walk down the street Monday night crying, I knew you were probably unhappy at home too. That clinched it. You were the one. And you were crying again last night when you passed my car.”...

Sandra’s astonishment had deepened. She hadn’t dreamed anyone would watch her like that. “What do you mean, I was ‘the one’?”

Ollie hesitated. “The one… I needed,” he ventured. “The one… to be my friend.”

She was glad he avoided terms of romance or passion. “Because I looked lonely and I cried?” she said.

“You passed the unhappiness test with flying colors.... Please, Sandra, let me get you something. Even if it’s just orange juice or coffee.”

She said coldly: “The only thing you have that I want is freedom. Offer that and I’ll accept it.”

Ollie sighed. “That’s not on the menu this morning. But it will be. I promise it will be. Not today, though.”

Sandra objected. “Not even later today? This afternoon or tonight?”

“Not till we’ve been friends for a while, Sandra. Absolutely not till we’ve been friends for a while. If you freeze me out, our time of friendship won’t begin. And I won’t let you go till we have it. This will last longer if you don’t cooperate.”

“What do you mean ‘cooperate’?”

“Talk with me, read books with me, listen to music with me, look at paintings and sketches with me, tell me about yourself and your life. Let me tell you about myself and my life. Be my friend. Let me be your friend. Share meals with me. Share breakfast now, that’ll be a start.”

Sandra cried, “I can’t be your friend if you keep me in a cage. I’m your prisoner or your pet, not your friend.”


About the Author:
A native Philadelphian, Shane Hayes earned his bachelor’s and his law degree from Villanova University, and studied for a year at Princeton Theological Seminary. He worked as a writer/editor for Prentice Hall and an attorney for the federal government. He is married, has four children, and lives in suburban Philadelphia. His nonfiction book The End of Unbelief: A New Approach to the Question of God was released by Leafwood Publishers in the fall of 2014.

Two young men meet on ship when both are recently out of college. They share a flaming ambition. Each aims to write novels that will be internationally acclaimed and win him a place in American letters. One of them, Paul Theroux, achieves the dream in all its glory: becomes world famous, writes over 40 books, and three of his novels are made into films. The other, Shane Hayes, fails completely, but keeps tenaciously writing, decade after decade, plowing on through hundreds of rejections. Then almost half a century later, Shane contacts Paul, who remembers him, reads three of his books, likes them, and praises them with endorsements.

In writing to agents and publishers Shane could now say, “Query for a novel praised by Paul Theroux.” No one offers a book deal because of an endorsement, so rejections keep coming. But more people let him send at least a sample and are predisposed to see merit in it. At his age, time is crucial. In the month he turns 75, Shane receives contracts on two of his books from different publishers. He will always be grateful to the literary giant who remembered ten days of friendship half-a-lifetime after it ended.

Website: http://www.shanehayes.org/
Blog: http://www.shanehayes.org/blog.html
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ShaneHayes732
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/shane.hayes.9256

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Monday, July 13, 2015

Bob by Tegon Maus - Q&A and Giveaway

VBT_TourBanner_BOB copy

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Tegon Maus will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Welcome to It's Raining Books, Tegon. Why do you write in your genre?

I write a variety of genre… Sci-Fi, Contemporary Fiction, Contemporary Paranormal, Romantic Comedy, Action Adventure. All are a product of the story. I write the story that forms in my head. I have no idea what genre it is until I’m done.

What draws you to it?

Purely the story. Once it’s in my head I can’t shake it until I write it down or a better… more entertaining one takes its place.

What research is required?

I generally work with common knowledge to take advantage of how people feel or think about a particular subject. Then I like to move the story just a little off center… just a little out of sync at first so my readers don’t notice… then before they realize it they are down the rabbit hole. Now they believe anything… everything I show them !

Name one thing you learned from your hero/heroine.

In my day job I see people in every light imaginable. You can tell if a person is good at heart or only wants to take advantage right away. All of them… correct that… all of us have a quirk or two – some a little more. My heroes are merely a mirror that shows all the little flaws we struggle so desperately to cover up. We are all flawed to the point of hilarity, it just depends on how you look at it.

Do you have any odd or interesting writing quirks, habits or superstitions?

Not really… I do like to wear my lucky writing shirt while at the computer… inspiration comes from a fresh box of fig newtons and a handful of M&Ms separated by color or a box of Gob Stoppers with a little salt while I work. I wouldn’t call that odd or a superstition… nope. Can’t think of a thing… not really.

Are you a plotter or pantser?

100% a pantser… I like to be surprised where the story takes me.

Look to your right – what’s sitting there?

My printer, of course… a new box of Fig Newtons and assorted other goodies… sorted by color and a stack of bills a foot thick.

Anything new coming up from you? What?

The 3rd book in THE EVE PROJECT SERIES… The Cordovian Effect. It’s a soft SCi-Fi book about the ramifications of living life as an Android… of trying to hold on to a love that was the meaning of life in the first place. What would you do? How far would you be willing to go to save it? How far is too far? Would you have a soul? Would it matter to you compared to losing all you hold dear?

Do you have a question for our readers?

Can’t think of a one… I will say look for my books, I’m very funny!

MediaKit_BookCover_BOBThe first time I heard it, I thought nothing of it at all... nothing. I've been in the newspaper game for more than twenty-seven years and that kind of experience gave a guy an edge but even that didn't prepare me. I'd been beaten, shot at, even stabbed a couple of times over the years but I always got the story... always. But this one... this one was big... too big perhaps... Maybe we were ready, maybe not. Either way, it wasn't my call. None of which filled me with the fear, the trepidation... the anguish of five little words that still haunted me today... "Is okay. I have cousin."
Enjoy an excerpt: "Bob?" I began, pointing toward the dark, stooped figure of Fred threading his way through the underbrush.

"Is Fred's way... live to close too nuclear plant. What Bob going to do?" he said, holding up both hands in defeat.

I had no idea what to say to that.

Bob, following Fred's lead, pulled a black ski mask over his face, before handing me a baseball cap.

"What's this?" I asked totally expecting a ski mask, turning the cap over in my hands.

"Beginner’s hat. Maybe, next time, for you," he smirked.

I'd been ribbed before, and I can take it almost as good as I can give it but this... from Bob? Damn aggravating.

I tripped along in the dark, getting my feet tangled on every stick, every root, every obstacle that stuck up out of the ground as I trailed behind him.

He, unlike Fred, seemed to be more than comfortable in the woods as well as the dark. Fred walked slightly ahead, darting from tree to tree as if hiding himself from some unseen observer.

Bob and I simply stood in place, waiting for him to wave us on as he dashed to the next tree or rock outcropping.

After what seemed like forever and more scratches and bruises than I had acquired in a lifetime, we found the house.

Fred, his back pressed against a sizable rock as if he were keeping it in place, held his position a dozen yards ahead of us. He waved frantically, signaling for us to get down and we obeyed.

A moment later headlights swept over where we had stood. The sound of tires grinding through the dirt filled the air.

"Shit," I breathed to myself. I hadn't expected this to be easy. It never had been in the past, but with Bob and Fred leading the way, we were screwed.

Fred scampered to his next position, waving us on to the rock he had just left behind when he felt the coast was clear.

It took us another fifteen minutes to cross the distance from where we first saw the house to physically touching the building.

I had to admit, my heart pounded hard in my chest, certain we were about to be caught as Fred pulled himself up to peer into a window.

"Clear," Fred whispered and we crept around the corner.

There were no cars, no trucks, no men with guns to be seen anywhere. Fred had hit it on the mark. For all outward appearances no one was home.

We continued to follow Fred as he made his way to a back door. Slowly, silently, he eased himself onto the porch kneeling before the door, slipping a hand into his shirt pocket.

Removing two small, shiny tools from its folds, he went to work on the knob.

Faster than I could say "is belt" Fred worked the lock, turning the knob. The door opened slightly.

We held a collective breath, waiting for the sound of an alarm.

"Clear," Fred whispered softly as he allowed the door to open fully. Crouched, almost on all fours, he scooted inside, closing the door behind him.

Unfathomable amounts of time seemed to slip by with each heartbeat as Bob and I stood outside in the dark and waited.

My anxiety, a mere seed in the pit of my stomach, had begun to run away with me. My palms grew sweaty.

"Is nice," Bob offered, leaning against the building, pushing both hands into his pockets.

"What?" I asked with disbelief.

"Is nice. Bob always busy... go here, go there. Wife always - when take wife to dinner? When go to opera? When take wife to see sister? When have time for wife? When Bob take out trash?"

"We just broke and entered. We can go to jail for this."

"Is nice, out with friends. That's all Bob say."

Before I could formulate an answer the door eased opened again.

"We're alone," Fred said.

Bob and I slipped in, closing the door behind us. We now stood in the mud room off the kitchen.

No more than six by five it held a built-in bench on one of the paneled walls, with a coat rack filling the opposite. The oversized tile floor continued throughout the kitchen as well.

The dim glow of a night light traced the edges of the granite topped cabinets and dining table. On the opposite side of the room was an opening to the hallway.

My attention was drawn by the sound of someone going through one of the cabinets.

"Fred," I whispered hoarsely, looking about the room for him.

"Da," he responded, popping up from under one of the cabinets, a large frying pan and matching lid in his hands.

"What the hell are you doing?" I asked angrily.

He began to speak in Russian as Bob patted him down, removing a stainless steel sauce pan from under his shirt.

Bob said nothing beyond a couple of quick snaps of his fingers before pointing to me.

Fred's arms went limp again as his hands went to his pocket, retrieving a fifty, handing it reluctantly to me.

"You should be ashamed," I admonished, happily snapping the money right out of his hand.

We moved through the kitchen to the hall and to the door that someone had used to spy on us.

At that moment, the sound of a toilet flushing reached us from somewhere upstairs.

Like little kids, all three of us dove for the door, rushing inside. On the other side the floor vanished, becoming little more than a small landing with stairs trailing into the darkness.


About the Author: MediaKit_AuthorPhoto_BOBI was raised pretty much the same as everyone else... devoted mother, strict father and all the imaginary friends I could conjure. Not that I wasn't friendly, I just wasn't "people orientated". Maybe I lived in my head way more than I should have, maybe not. I liked machines more than people, at least I did until I met my wife.


The first thing I can remember writing was for her. For the life of me I can't remember what it was about... something about dust bunnies under the bed and monsters in my closet. It must have been pretty good because she married me shortly after that. I spent a good number of years after inventing games and prototypes for a variety of ideas before I got back to writing.


It wasn't a deliberate conscious thought, it was more of a stepping stone. My wife and I had joined a dream interpret group and we were encouraged to write down our dreams as they occurred. "Be as detailed as you can," we were told.


I was thrilled. If there is one thing I enjoy it's making people believe me and I like to exaggerate. Not a big exaggeration or an outright lie mine you, just a little step out of sync, just enough so you couldn't be sure if it were true or not. When I write, I always write with the effort of "it could happen" very much in mind and nothing, I guarantee you, nothing, makes me happier.

Publisher: http://www.tirgearrpublishing.com/authors/Maus_Tegon
Website: http://www.tegonmaus.com/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Tegon-Maus/150255051766767
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TegonMaus
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Tegon-Maus/e/B009PFZILW
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5808023.Tegon_Maus
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/tegon

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Friday, July 10, 2015

A Lady of Good Family by Jeanne Mackin - Spotlight and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Jeanne will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Raised among wealth and privilege during America's fabled Gilded Age, a niece of famous novelist Edith Wharton and a friend to literary great Henry James, Beatrix Farrand is expected to marry, and to marry well. But as a young woman traveling through Europe, she already knows that gardens are her true passion. How she becomes a woman for whom work and love, the earthly and the mysterious, are held in delicate balance is the story of her unique determination to create beauty while remaining true to herself.

Enjoy an excerpt:

1920
Lenox, Massachusetts

My grandparents had a farm outside of Schenectady, and every Sunday my father, who worked in town, would hitch the swayback mare to the buggy and take us out there. I would be left in play in the field as my father and grandfather sat on the porch and drank tea and Grandma cooked. My mother, always dressed a little too extravagantly, shelled the peas.

A yellow barn stood tall and broad against a cornflower blue sky. A row of red hollyhocks in front of the barn stretched to the sky, each flower on the stem as silky and round as the skirt on Thumbelina’s ball gown. In the field next to the barn, daisies danced in the breeze. My namesake flower.

I saw it still, the yellows and red and blues glowing against my closed eyelids. The field was my first garden and I was absolutely happy in it. We usually are, in the gardens of our childhood.

When I opened my eyes I was on a porch in Lenox, a little tired from weeks of travel, a little restless. My companions were restless, too, weary of trying to make polite conversation as strangers do.

It was a late-summer evening, too warm, with a disquieting breeze stirring the treetops as if a giant ghostly hand ruffled them. Through the open window a piano player was tinkling his way through Irving Berlin as young people danced and flirted. In the road that silvered past the inn, young men, those who had made it home from the war, drove up and down in their shiny black Model T’s.

It was a night for thinking of love and loss, first gardens, first kisses.

Mrs. Avery suggested we try the Ouija board. Since the war it had become a national obsession.

“Let’s,” I agreed eagerly.


About the Author:
Jeanne Mackin‘s latest novel, A Lady of Good Family, explores the secret life of gilded age Beatrix Jones Farrand, niece of Edith Wharton and the first woman professional landscape design in America. Her previous novel, The Beautiful American, based on the life of model turned war correspondent and photographer, Lee Miller won the CNY 2015 prize for fiction. She has published in American Letters and Commentary and SNReview and other publications and is the author of the Cornell Book of Herbs and Edible Flowers. She was the recipient of a creative writing fellowship from the American Antiquarian Society and her journalism has won awards from the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education. She lives with her husband, Steve Poleskie, in Ithaca. A Lady of Good Family is available at Barnes and Nobles, Amazon, and other bookstores.

Website: www.jeannemackin.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/jeannemackin1
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JeanneMackinAuthor
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/36613.Jeanne_MacKin

Buy the book at Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

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Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Dragon Knight's Axe by Mary Morgan - Spotlight and Giveaway

BBT_TourBanner_DragonKnightsAxe copy

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Mary Morgan will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

MediaKit_BookCover_DragonKnightsAxeBattled scarred, Dragon Knight, Alastair MacKay, has fled to the seas to separate himself from his powers that are connected to the land. Yet, when he rescues a woman from a slave trader in Ireland, he steps back inadvertently into a world filled with magic—taking on the role of protector and leading him on a journey to confront his greatest fears.

Research assistant, Fiona O’Quinlan loves translating ancient artifacts at Trinity College. When she falls asleep on an archeological dig, she awakens in another time. She soon discovers a Dragon Knight’s relic has been entrusted into her care. Determined to return the artifact to the Great Glen, Fiona is unprepared for the danger ahead—losing her heart and soul to Alastair “Beast” MacKay.

Will their love be strong enough to soothe the beast and heal the man? Or will Death swing its axe, leaving them lost for all eternity?

Enjoy an excerpt:

He would get the truth out of her. She was now his. Bought and paid for.

His anger simmered just below the surface, and he allowed his eyes to flash with the fire of the dragon. Hearing her gasp, he smiled. Good, little bird. Fear me. Without giving her time to react, he swept her up and dumped her over his left shoulder, and strode to the ship.

He heard her sharp intake of breath, and then she started to pound against his back. “Put...me down,” she demanded.

“Nae.”

She started to kick, and he clenched his jaw in frustration. The little bird had talons. He responded with a smack to her bottom, but instead of removing his hand, he kept it against her soft curves. “I will put ye down when we are on my ship.”

She went completely still, and then she screamed.

Alastair dumped her onto the ground. “For the love of Brigid, did ye have to yell into my ear?”

Fiona rubbed at her bottom and then stood. “You beast,” she spat out at him. Jumping onto a nearby boulder, she looked directly into his eyes. “Don’t you ever touch me like that again.”

Alastair yanked her to his chest by her arms, his face mere inches from hers. “And what are ye going to do?” He watched as her eyes widened in alarm. Blue eyes that reminded him of the sky on warm summer days. Then his gaze traveled down to her lips, red as berries.

Instantly, his beast roared to life. Claim one kiss, Alastair.


MediaKit_AuthorPhoto_DragonKnightsAxeAbout the Author: I am a constant daydreamer and have been told quite often to remove my head from the clouds. Yet, this is where I find the magic to write my stories. Not only do I love to weave a good tale, but I have a voracious appetite for reading. I worked for Borders Books for almost fourteen years. Imagine my delight to be surrounded by so many books, talking to others about them, and getting paid.

Pure bliss!

I have traveled to England, Scotland, Ireland, and France. There are those who know me well when I say, “My heart is in the Highlands.” I believe I have left it there or maybe in Ireland.

When not writing, I enjoy playing in my garden—another place where magic grows. Of course, there is time spent with my family. They are the ones that keep me grounded.

I love to hear from my readers. You can contact me at:

Website: http://www.marymorganauthor.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/mary.morgan.564
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/m_morganauthor
Pinterst: http://www.pinterest.com/marymorgan50/

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Everywhere It's You by C.B. Salem - Spotlight and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. C.B. Salem will award a randomly drawn commenter via Rafflecopter a $20 Amazon/BN GC. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Legal investigator Kristina Andersen has been drugged.

It started when she came into work and was tasked with finding the firm's biggest client: the intense, enigmatic pharmaceuticals billionaire Landon Tatum.

She'd just had a sexy encounter with him while working a birthday party undercover at a seedy strip club the previous night. Now he's missing, and she needs to find him.

Problem: the drug coursing through her veins makes it so every man she sees looks like the man she's looking for.

And that's just the start of it.

Enjoy an excerpt:

Her last-night’s-self walked to the front of the room, balancing gracefully on very high heels as the first guest arrived. Then another bout of nausea washed over her, fogging her mind. Her eyes had to be lying.

Landon Tatum had just entered the room.

This was wrong. He’d come in later, she knew it. Fifteen minutes before the birthday boy, maybe twenty. There had been more than a dozen people there. Even Fordelli, the man she had come to watch, had arrived first. She’d been watching very carefully and this wasn’t the kind of thing she’d forget.

He wore a black suit, black shirt and a silver tie. That wasn’t right either. But the clean-cut, brown hair, the thin-lipped mouth, the dark eyes, they were as she’d remembered. The perfect, sharp cheek bones with a slightly crooked nose that looked like it had been broken in a fight once and never fixed. It was the kind of “blemish” she couldn’t take her eyes off of.

She breathed shallowly. This was wrong. When had she become this attracted to him? Until recently, she’d thought of him as an attractive guy. Not mouth-watering can’t-take-my-eyes-off. That hadn’t happened to her since high school.

She watched herself approach to offer him a drink. Then the next guest came in, to the right of where her eyes had been focused.

Tatum again. Sharp cheeks. Slightly crooked nose. Dark, perceptive eyes.

Another black suit, black shirt, but this time a blue tie. She flicked her eyes between the two of them. They were both there. She was seeing two of him.


About the Author: C.B. Salem lives, writes, and dreams in Chicago. When she isn’t reading or plotting the next scene in her book, she enjoys cooking new dishes and having quality cuddles with her two dogs: Murphy and Oliver.

http://www.cbsalem.com
http://www.twitter.com/cbsalem
http://www.facebook.com/cbsalem

Buy the book at Amazon.

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Tuesday, July 7, 2015

A Thin Slice of Heaven by p.m. terrell - Q&A and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. p.m.terrell will be awarding a Celtic Butterfly Suncatcher similar to the one mentioned in the book, symbolizing both the never-ending cycle of life and the metamorphosis of a butterfly to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Welcome back to It's Raining Books, p.m. If someone were writing a story about you, what would your blurb say?

I hope it would say that I always tried to bloom where I was planted. My life has been the opposite of a well-planned one; it’s been filled with unexpected twists and turns, seemingly insurmountable challenges and devastating heartbreak. But with each detour I’ve encountered, I have tried to remain positive; I’ve looked for the possibilities in every place and circumstance I’ve found myself in, and I have tried to make the world a better place because I’ve been here.

Would you tell us a little about your newest release that isn't in the blurb?

If you believe in life beyond what we can see with the naked eye, this story will capture your imagination. I wasn’t prepared for the number of people who had lost loved ones and told me how comforting the story was to them. They had all felt their loved ones once they had passed on; they’d heard a whisper of a voice, saw a fleeting, filmy image, or felt their presence in dozens of different ways. Reading A Thin Slice of Heaven, especially Sean’s explanations of passing to the other side and communicating with those who had been left behind, spoke to them—and I hope it speaks to you as well.

What was your favorite scene to write in this story?

It was when Sean showed Charleigh how ghosts can become visible and even physical. He began slowly, explaining the field of energy around each person, but the scene progresses to a fever pitch. I had great dreams for weeks after writing that scene! I researched reported physical contacts with spirit entities, ranging from haunted houses to visits in the night; how living beings displayed evidence of having been touched—from finger indentions in their skin to scratch marks—and I also reviewed scientific evidence supporting the theory of parallel universes. It is a fascinating subject for me, and taking Charleigh and Sean to dramatic, sensuous heights was something I’d never written before.

If you could trade places with one of your characters, who would it be and why?

I’d trade places with Charleigh; Sean loves her so unconditionally and so deeply that any woman would be crazy not to want to be in her shoes.

She had arranged to meet her husband in Northern Ireland for a second honeymoon, but when Charleigh arrives at the remote castle, she receives a message that he won’t be coming—and that he’s leaving her for another woman.

Stranded for the weekend by a snowstorm that has blocked all access to the castle, she finds herself three thousand miles from home in a country she knows nothing about.

She is soon joined by Sean Bracken, the great-grandson of Laird Bracken, the original owner of the castle, and she finds herself falling quickly and madly in love with him. There’s just one problem: he’s dead.

As the castle begins to come alive with secrets from centuries past, she finds herself trapped between parallel worlds. Caught up in a mass haunting, she can no longer recognize the line between the living and the dead. Now she’s discovering that her appearance there wasn’t by accident—and her life is about to change forever.

Enjoy an excerpt:

A movement caught her eye and Charleigh started, whirling around. No one was there. She laughed nervously; no doubt, it had been a bird outside the window, its reflection caught in the mirror. Still, she returned to the door. There was a simple doorknob lock which seemed woefully inept, but she quickly recognized a thick piece of wood standing against the wall as an old-fashioned bar, and slipped it into place. It was better than a deadbolt, she reasoned.

She kicked off her shoes and checked her cell phone again. Finding no reception, she returned to the window and held it aloft until a weak bar appeared.

The phone beeped, causing her to jump, as a text message appeared.

She stared at it, not realizing that she’d been holding her breath until it expelled in a whoosh that left her dizzy.

“Charleigh,” it read, “I can’t do this. I’m not in love with you. I’m in love with someone else.”

“The feckin’ arse.”

The sound of the man’s deep, rich voice startled her and she spun around. No one was there. The bar remained across the door. There were no blind spots in the room; it was circular and plainly, though tastefully, furnished. She strode purposefully to the bathroom. A set of candles blazed on the countertop and though the shadows danced in the corners of the room, she could clearly see that she was alone.

Yet she could not have imagined it. The tone had been resonant and almost gravelly, the timber of a man’s voice upon first arising. The brogue had been both commanding and melodious.

But as her heart stilled and her mind allowed the words in the message to sink in, she realized that Ethan was not coming. He perhaps had never intended to join her. And now she was stuck in Ireland as a snowstorm raged outside her windows, three thousand miles from home.




About the Author:
p.m.terrell is the pen name for Patricia McClelland Terrell, a multi-award-winning, internationally acclaimed author of more than twenty books in five genres: contemporary suspense, historical suspense, romance, computer how-to and non-fiction.

Prior to writing full-time, she founded two computer companies in the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area. Among her clients were the Central Intelligence Agency, United States Secret Service, U.S. Information Agency, and Department of Defense. Her specialties were in white collar computer crimes and computer intelligence, themes that have carried forward to her suspense.

She is also the co-founder of The Book ‘Em Foundation, an organization committed to raising public awareness of the correlation between high crime rates and high illiteracy rates. She is the organizer and chairperson of Book ‘Em North Carolina, an annual event held in the real town of Lumberton, North Carolina, to raise funds to increase literacy and reduce crime. For more information on this event and the literacy campaigns funded by it, visit www.bookemnc.org.

Author’s website: www.pmterrell.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/pmterrell
Blog: www.pmterrell.blogspot.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/author.p.m.terrell

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