Meet David Gaughan @authorGaughan and Discover the Secret to Writing a Great Book! #FridayReads #SFF


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I first met David Gaughan when he asked if I would read and review Aaden Bluestar – The Awakening several months ago. After reading it, I wanted to know more about the man behind the inspiring young adult science fiction adventure novel I’d just read. So, I asked David if he’d be willing to sit down for an interview. He said sure and I did a little jig. No, really. See, not only is David a prolific author but he shares the belief that each of us can make a difference in this world. So, without further ado, please welcome David to the POTL Blog. Take it away, David:

 

What is your writing process?

When I first started writing I found the story flowed better when I wrote longhand. I still have the handwritten original journal of my first attempt at writing, which was eventually published many years later as Star Bred Prophecy. However, my first published work was actually dictated and I find that method far more efficient and creative. I’ll sit comfortably in a chair with my feet up while I stare into space. I visualise the scene unfolding before me, like I’m watching a movie and I simply describe what I’m seeing. I’ve had feedback from several readers who say they feel like they’re watching a movie when they read my works.

 

How important are names to you in your books? Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds or the meaning?

Names are definitely important. In the original story that was published as “The Blue Star”, the key character’s son, who played a fairly minor role, was named Ajay. When I decided to rewrite the story from the boy’s perspective the name Ajay just didn’t seem right and it certainly didn’t go well with BlueStar. Even though it was based on the original Blue Star story, the tale took on a new energy and originality, so it seemed appropriate that a name change was needed. Aaden BlueStar emerged as an independent character in his own right. Even his name is spelt with double a, rather than the more commonly spelt Aiden.

 

Have you always liked to write?

My first urge to write was when I was only six years old. I was so enchanted by a children’s story book that I started copying it in long hand. At that young age the hand writing wasn’t that great, but when one of my brothers asked me what I was doing I immediately replied, “I’m writing a book”. It was almost as though I had an inkling of what I’d be doing in later years. Of course it was a huge joke to them, so I didn’t pick up the pen again until many years later. In my early twenties when I went on my first major overseas excursion and I started telling people about my experiences, I often got the comment, “you should write a book about it.” However, it wasn’t until years later I suddenly got the urge and I’ve been writing ever since.

 

Are you a plotter or a pantster?

I’ve always flown by the seat of my pants. There are a couple of occasions where I’ve plotted out the basic outline, but generally I find the story flows and takes on a life of its own when I sit back and watch it unfold. Even I’m surprised at where the story takes me sometimes. Although plotting the outline has helped on a couple of occasions, I find the creative forces flow better when I let it unfold as I go. As mentioned earlier, I tend to be like a spectator watching a movie. It can be quite fascinating at times. Of course, after the initial draft, that’s where the real work begins, with the honing of the story and the many rewrites.

 

Do you read your reviews? Do you respond to them, good or bad? Do you have any advice on how to deal with the bad?

I always read my reviews. I’ve learned not to take things too seriously because I’ve found that each reviewer has their own perspective and sometimes they contradict each other, where one reviewer sees an area where they take exception and another reviewer might praise that same part. It just goes to show that everyone has their personal likes and dislikes. However, if the same criticism arises with two or more reviewers, then it highlights something I need to consider for future work. In the end, I think any review is good, whether it’s high ranking or not. It’s all a learning process.

 

Is this your first book? How many books have you written prior (if any?)

I’ve written several books, ranging from fiction through to self help. Having had several friends and family affected by cancer, I researched and wrote an alternative treatment e-book called “Is there a Cure for Cancer”. On a similar vein I’ve written an e-book called the Wisdom Wellness Diet, again targeting self healing through healthy eating habits. With the increase in world weather extreme events I wrote a book called Self Sufficiency Survival, all of which are available via Amazon.com. However, my passion is with the creative writing and the first one published in hardcopy was The Blue Star, later rewritten from Aaden’s perspective and published as Aaden BlueStar – The Awakening.

 

What are you working on now? What is your next project?

What I’m working on now is something totally different. Besides book two and three of Aaden’s story, I’m researching the interpretation of ancient prophecies, some of which are predictions that have already happened and others that are yet to come. I’ve got the basic outline of the stories in the Aaden Bluestar series and they’ll need more work at some stage. However, my current priority is finishing the interpretation of the ancient prophecies, a project that will no doubt be rather controversial.

 

What is your biggest failure?

I don’t look at things so much as failures, but more as learning experiences. Rather than failure, I think my biggest disappointment was when my first published book The Blue Star never really took flight. It wasn’t until much later that I realised it was a bit ahead of it’s time and targeted at the wrong readership group. It wasn’t until years later that I realised the story needed to be told from Aaden’s perspective and targeted to the YA market. Regarding so-called failure, I take my cue from Thomas Edison who, when asked by a reporter how he felt about failing over a thousand times to make a light bulb, replied “I don’t look at it as failing a thousand times – more that I’ve discovered that many ways how not to make a light bulb.” Actually, there are many interpretations of what he actually said, but that’s the gist of his message.

 

Have you ever gotten into a fight?

Yes, when I was young, growing up on the rougher side of town. Although I did my best to stay clear of confrontation I did get ambushed on a few occasions. I learned early on when the adversary is much bigger, it’s better to resort to negotiation and reasoning, rather than try and fight against the odds. If anything, it made me more observant of situations and peoples’ behaviour, which came in handy in later years as a writer.

 

What do you want your tombstone to say?

I don’t really see the point of recording anything on a tombstone. I’ve left instructions for my ashes to be scattered at low tide on a beach – I’ve always received a lot of inspiration from walking the beach so I couldn’t think of a better place to end up. One thing you often see on a tombstone is the date of birth and the date of death, separated by a dash (-). I think it’s more important how you spend that dash while you’re alive rather than recording the dates on a tombstone. The only thing I’ll leave behind is my writing and I hope that will continue to inspire people long after I’m gone.

 

If you had a superpower, what would it be?

I think a great superpower would be having the ability to convince people to use their creative visualization energies solely for positive outcomes. Of course, doing so would override their freedom of choice, so I guess I won’t achieve that superpower until I’m advanced enough spiritually not to use it. In the meantime, I’ll concentrate on my writing to help people make that choice of their own free will.

 

Where is one place you want to visit that you haven’t been before?

I can think of a couple of star systems that would be interesting to visit, but unless our scientists make rapid progress in the short term with their propulsion systems, I guess the only way I’ll make that trip is to hitch a ride on a visiting spaceship.

 

Do you have any scars? What are they from?

I have a scar on my forehead that was more visible when I was young than it is now. I got it at the age of twelve when, riding my bike – I had a head-on collision with a truck. Needless to say, I came off second-best and I spent three days unconscious in hospital. I have another scar on my abdomen where I used black salve bloodroot paste to treat a skin cancer. I’ve always been a bit adventurous with trying alternatives and although I got a little nervous with the pain and the resulting crater it left behind when the plug came away, it healed up nicely, although it left a scar, mainly due to the size of the hole that had to heal. I think scars, both physical and emotional, are evidence of life trials that, if they don’t kill us, tend to make us stronger.

 

 Aaden Cover_titled_sm

 

Title: Aaden BlueStar – The Awakening

Author: David Gaughan

Genre: Sci-fi/Fantasy

Publisher: Astar Print

 

Book Blurb:

Never feeling quite at home in this world, an ordinary boy discovers his extraterrestrial heritage and superhuman powers when he is confronted by an alien foe. Discovering he is here on a time travel mission, his grip on reality is stretched when he realizes his father, who is running for President, is also not of this world. His best friend Fleur and his sister Tiffany are the only two he can confide in. Together with their extraterrestrial friends, they not only have to combat their alien foe, they also have to convince humanity to change their ways to prevent destroying their home through an environmental disaster. With climate change and extreme weather issues increasing in frequency and intensity, the clock is ticking!

 

Excerpt:

With the memories still fresh in his mind of the destruction of the alien craft in his trance the previous night, Aaden struggled to concentrate during the history lesson.

“Okay,” said Brian Masters, catching Aaden’s attention. “We’ve covered the main battle in today’s lesson, but not what led up to this. For your assignment, I want you to research the main events leading to this confrontation. I want that returned by tomorrow.”

‘No!’ Aaden thought in panic, staring at the teacher. ‘I need time to check out Tunguska.’

Masters, who had turned to clean the whiteboard, suddenly turned back and said, “No, you need time to check out Tunguska.”

As soon as he’d said the words, he immediately baulked. The shocked expression on his face showed that he’d had no intention of saying such a thing. Aaden was amazed that he’d repeated his very thoughts. The other students, who were all preparing to leave the room, stopped and looked at Masters.

“Tun … what?” said one of the students. “Is that a hint of what we need to research?”

“No!” said Masters quickly. “I … uh … I’m not sure where that came from.” He shook his head, as though to clear a confusing thought. “Ignore that. Have the assignment ready by tomorrow.”

The students went back to clearing their desks, preparing to leave. Aaden continued staring at Masters, amazed that the man had repeated the words he’d been thinking. He wasn’t sure whether it was some strange coincidence, so he decided to test it. He thought, ‘Make it two days for the assignment.’

Masters immediately said, “Make it two days for the assignment.”

Again, as soon as the words were out of his mouth, his jaw dropped with the surprise of having said them.

“Two days?” one of the students repeated. “Not tomorrow?”

Masters looked around the room, appearing somewhat stunned. The students had all stopped and were looking at him for confirmation.

“Yeesss …” he replied, looking strained. “You can have two days.”

Aaden struggled to conceal his glee. He thought, ‘On second thoughts, make it three days.’

Masters immediately repeated, “On second thoughts, make it three days.”

Astounded by what he’d just said, Masters immediately grabbed his satchel and fled the room. The students filed out after him, all smiles at having gained such leniency on the timing of their assignment.

Aaden was still coming to terms with what had just happened when Fleur joined him as they walked from the room.

“That’s a bonus,” she said. “Three days for the assignment – we only need one.”

“Hey!” said Aaden, raising his hands in mock submission. “Who’s complaining? Have you heard of Tunguska?”

Fleur gave a sideways glance. “Masters mentioned that – what is it?”

“Let’s go check it out in the library.”

“But Masters said it wasn’t anything to do with the assignment.”

Aaden’s eyes sparkled. “Let’s check it out anyway.”

With a shrug, she followed him to the library and watched as he did a search for ‘Tunguska event’ on the computer.

“1908!” Aaden gasped. “It happened over a century ago.”

Fleur leaned closer to the screen. “Who cares?”

Aaden shook his head. “I didn’t know it was so long ago. But it actually happened. I thought it was just a dream.”

Fleur pulled a face. “What?”

Aaden ignored her questioning stare. “Ah … nothing. Let’s see what they say about it.”

“Tunguska is in East Central Siberia,” said Fleur, reading the text. “This has nothing to do with our assignment. What’s so great about Tunguska?”

“I heard there was an explosion there.”

“So? There have been explosions all over the world throughout history.”

“This was a major blast … bigger than the atomic bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima.”

Fleur’s eyes widened. She looked closer at the screen. “No way! An atomic bomb in 1908?”

“Not an atomic bomb according to this info,” said Aaden, disappointed. “They think it was a meteorite.”

“There was no crater,” said Fleur, reading. “Meteorites are mainly rock, iron and nickel. Something that heavy would’ve made a massive crater. You reckon it was big enough for an explosion like an atom bomb. How can that be?”

“Because it wasn’t a meteorite,” said Aaden. The words were out before he could stop himself.

 

Buy Links:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RIMSS6G

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B00RIMSS6G

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00RIMSS6G

Paperback https://www.createspace.com/6550223

 

Author Biography:

Born on the same day and month as Mark Twain, this Sagittarius has always been the explorer, not only in world travel pursuits but also alternative fringe subjects. Having climbed the Great Pyramid of Cheops (and getting arrested doing so), some of his other world experiences included riding camels in the Sahara Desert, white-water rafting at the top of the Ganges river, fire walking on a weekend retreat, hot air ballooning in the Cappadocia Region in Turkey and visiting ashrams in Northern India. Much of David’s overseas travel has been fueled by his keen interest in metaphysical subjects.

 

Social Media Links:

Twitter https://twitter.com/authorgaughan

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13428937.David_Gaughan

Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KDZKOM

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/david.gaughan.967

 

 

Crowned (Beholder #4) by @CB_Bauer #CoverReveal! #Paranormal #YA


Crowned
Christina Bauer
(Beholder, Book 4)
Published by: Monster House Books
Publication date: November 28th 2017
Genres: Paranormal, Young Adult

 

Beauty. Romance. Power. It’s all in the eye of the BEHOLDER.

 

At last, Elea has found the love of her life. Unfortunately, the evil Tsar Viktor is about to unleash an army of twisted mages bent on killing everyone Elea cares about… including the man who’s stolen her heart.

 

So what’s a powerful witch to do? Why, organize a league of magical warriors, of course!

 

Elea recruits and trains a fighting force to take down the Tsar. That’s challenge enough, but on the eve of battle, Elea realizes that her true enemies may be far more powerful than even Viktor: The deities Oni and Yuri could be out to destroy her as well. With major battles brewing on two fronts, Elea’s not sure that she’ll win, but with true love to inspire her, she’s certainly ready to fight.

 

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

Previous books in the series:

 

Author Bio:

 

Christina Bauer knows how to tell stories about kick-ass women. In her best selling Angelbound series, the heroine is a part-demon girl who loves to fight in Purgatory’s Arena and falls in love with a part-angel prince. This young adult best seller has driven more than 500,000 ebook downloads and 9,000 reviews on Goodreads and retailers. It is now available as an audiobook on Audible and iTunes.

 

Bauer has also told the story of the Women’s March on Washington by leading PR efforts for the Massachusetts Chapter. Her pre-event press release—the only one sent out on a major wire service—resulted in more than 19,000 global impressions and redistribution by over 350 different media entities including the Associated Press.

 

Christina graduated from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School with BA’s in English along with Television, Radio, and Film Production. She lives in Newton, MA with her husband, son, and semi-insane golden retriever, Ruby.

 

Be the first to know about new releases from Christina by signing up for her newsletter: http://tinyurl.com/CBupdates

 

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

 

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Rise of the Sea Witch by @Rourkewrites #CoverReveal! #YALit #Fantasy


Rise of the Sea Witch
Stacey Rourke
Publication date: June 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

Details of the sea witch’s banishment have been exaggerated. The body count that preempted it was not. Once an illustrious princess, her hands and tentacles were stained with the blood of thousands. No one could comprehend how the hooks of madness dragged her down from her life of privilege.

 

Born Princess Vanessa of Atlantica, the ambitious young royal was one of two children born to the great King Poseidon. She and her brother, Triton, were groomed from birth to rule. Yet only one would ascend that coveted throne. While carefree Triton flits through his training with a cavalier demeanor and beguiling charm, Vanessa’s hunger for her father’s acceptance drives her to push herself to the limits of magic, and combat to become a leader worthy of her people.

 

When war against the humans ravages their once regal kingdom, political sides are chosen. Factions from the seven seas challenge the existing leadership, pitting Vanessa against her brother in a vicious battle for the crown. Traitors are exposed, dark family secrets revealed, and a once strong sibling bond is strained to its breaking point.

 

Only when the ink black waters from the ultimate betrayal rescind, will the truth be known of how the villainous sea witch rose with one name on her vengeful lips–Triton.

 

Add to Goodreads

 

Author Bio:

RONE Award Winner for Best YA Paranormal Work of 2012 for Embrace, a Gryphon Series Novel

 

Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012

Turning Pages Magazine Winner for Best YA book of 2013 & Best Teen Book of 2013

Readers’ Favorite Silver Medal Winner for Crane 2015

 

Stacey Rourke is the author of the award winning YA Gryphon Series, the chillingly suspenseful Legends Saga, and the romantic comedy Reel Romance Series. She lives in Michigan with her husband, two beautiful daughters, and two giant dogs. She loves to travel, has an unhealthy shoe addiction, and considers herself blessed to make a career out of talking to the imaginary people that live in her head.

 

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

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Chase Tinker and the House of Magic by @malia_ann #MGLit #99cents #fantasy


Book 1 Magic

 

Title:  Chase Tinker and the House of Magic (The Chase Tinker Series, Book 1)

Author:  Malia Ann Haberman

Genre:  Middle Grade/Tween Fantasy

 

Book Blurb:

 

Chase Tinker has never believed in real, honest-to-goodness magic, but that’s all about to change when he’s attacked by a ferocious…soccer ball and t-shirts!?
 
Before he knows what’s hit him, he’s thrust into a frightening, yet thrilling, paranormal world where a missing dad, out-of-control powers, a 560 year old, incredibly magical house, and a dastardly wicked enemy are only part of all the craziness.

Now it’s up to three daring teenagers, one cute middle grader, and one feisty ferret to save the world’s magic, free will, and light…

 

Excerpt:

Andy gripped Chase’s shoulder. “It was me! I did something, but I didn’t mean to. I wanted you to stop. You were going to be squashed!” He wouldn’t stop babbling. “No one was moving. What’s going on? I don’t get it. Why—”

 

“I—I don’t know, Andy. I don’t know,” said Chase, his voice shaking slightly as he clambered to his feet. “Calm down, okay?” He needed time to think. There had to be some kind of reasonable explanation for all the freaky supernatural happenings. He just didn’t know what it was at the moment. “Come on, we better go home. Grab the ball.”

 

Neither boy said anything as they hurried across the noisy, traffic-filled streets and dodged past other pedestrians. Chase, his mind spinning, kept sneaking glances at Andy. He was afraid his brother would faint dead away right there in the middle of the sidewalk.

 

Chase breathed a sigh of relief when they finally reached their apartment building. Andy pushed through the revolving door. Chase was about to follow when, out of the blue, an eerie, icy breeze ruffled his hair and swirled around him. Rubbing the goosebumps popping up on his arms, he started to glance back over his shoulder when someone shoved him from behind and toward the open back door of a waiting cab. Tripping, he whacked his head on the door’s top corner. The shadowy interior loomed closer as stars danced in front of his eyes. A hand grabbed his arm.

 

“Chase! What are you doing?” exclaimed Andy’s voice. Chase shook his head to clear it as Andy pulled him away from the vehicle.

 

“Wh-what?” mumbled Chase.

 

“Quit messing around,” said Andy, tugging Chase across the sidewalk. “We need to go inside.”

 

A hooded man slipped by the boys. As the man turned his head, Chase caught a glimpse of cold, piercing, light-blue eyes that seemed to cut right through him. The strange man slid into the taxi. It swerved into traffic and took off down the street. Feeling oddly threatened, yet not understanding why, Chase followed Andy through the rotating door.

 

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Special Amazon Promotion:

 

Get book 1 for 99 cents at Amazon US (slightly higher at CA and UK)!

Get the whole series (4 books) for $4.96 at Amazon US (slightly higher at CA and UK)!

 

Buy Links for Book 1:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Chase-Tinker-House-Magic-Book-ebook/dp/B01LYDRRVV

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Chase-Tinker-House-Magic-Book-ebook/dp/B01LYDRRVV

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Chase-Tinker-House-Magic-Book-ebook/dp/B01LYDRRVV

 

Buy Links for Whole Series:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01M30BGEE?ref=series_rw_dp_labf

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B01M30BGEE?ref=series_rw_dp_labf

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01M30BGEE?ref=series_rw_dp_labf

 

Malia photo

 

Author Biography:

Besides being an Author, Malia is a Ballroom Dance Instructor and Ferret-Sitter. She was bitten by the writing bug in her teens, where at that time she wanted to write sappy love stories with loads of angst and smooching. It was some years later that she changed her mind and decided to study creative writing for middle graders and tweens, and anyone else who would enjoy her wild and crazy imagination. One night she had a dream that she lived in a house where every room had a fabulous magical power in it. And that’s how her “Chase Tinker Series” came to be. (She’s currently working on an Andy Tinker sequel.) She also loves pizza, chocolate, reading, colorful Christmas lights, and watching TV. She’d love to have the awesome abilities to teleport and move things with her mind. Malia lives in the Seattle area with her cute little ferrets.

 

Social Media Links:

Website: http://maliaannhaberman.weebly.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mahaberman

Twitter: https://twitter.com/malia_ann

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5769159.Malia_Ann_Haberman

 

 

Thirsty for Water is #99cents! #YA #paranormal #KindleUnlimited


thirsty-for-water

 

Title: Thirsty for Water: A Short Story

Author: N. N. Light

Genre: Paranormal, Young Adult, Short Story

 

Book Blurb:

Juliet can’t wait to graduate from high school and finally move on with her life. Five more days and she’s free. She gazes out the window while her history teacher, Mrs. Johnson, drones on about war, famine and lack of water in Africa.

A gong rings, startling Juliet out of her daydream. She looks around to see if it was one of her classmates pulling a prank when a little boy carrying a spear appears. Is he a ghost or something more? He pleads for her help and before she can argue, she is transported to a small village in Africa. History comes alive like never before and Juliet must decide how she can help Noko and his village before it’s too late.

Thirsty for Water tells the story of Africa and the need for water in an approachable way for children of all ages. A great learning tool for teachers, parents and libraries.

 

Excerpt:

“How do you know my name?” She gasped and tried to pinch her arm.

 

“I know all about you.  My name is Noko.” He paused and reached out to touch her arm. “Why are you hurting yourself like that?”

 

His hand felt cool on her arm and she stopped. If he was a ghost, I wouldn’t be able to feel him.  This must be real… but how?  She reached up and touched his thumb with her index finger.  His skin was dry yet very real.

 

“I was m-m-making sure you were real.”  She leaned forward and whispered, “Why are you here?  What do you want with me?”

 

He took his hand away and smiled.  “Your elder there is talking about my country and all you can think about is getting out of here.  Where I come from, there is no school.  Children like me hunt, fish and work in the fields.  You are lucky to sit here all day and not work.”

 

She leaned back in her chair and thought about it.  No school, only working to survive.  It was a sobering thought and she shivered.

 

Praise for Thirsty for Water:

“I loved it. I had no idea just how short short would be when I started it, but what a lovely tale to teach & inspire! I feel strongly a connection being made always holds the best potential to calm, comfort & nourish, to move & inspire hope, to insight change or instill lessons. And for me, I feel any kind of travel…time travel, dimension travel (I’m a big fan of the Twilight Zone!), or even a story with a “real” trip involved always helps to create that connection somehow. It was THAT quick…& true…once Juliet felt a connection to Noko…it was a done deal! So beautiful. The story simple…& short…yet so powerful.” – Amazon Reviewer

 

Buy Links:

FREE April 7 – 9, 2017

 

FREE on Kindle Unlimited all year long!

 

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Thirsty-Water-Short-N-Light-ebook/dp/B00O98EL3Q

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Thirsty-Water-Short-N-Light-ebook/dp/B00O98EL3Q

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Thirsty-Water-Short-N-Light-ebook/dp/B00O98EL3Q

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30835342-thirsty-for-water

 

couple N N Light

 

Author Biography: N. N. Light is the husband-wife writing team, commonly known as Mr. N and Mrs. N. Mrs. N. has been creating stories ever since she was little. Her grandfather remembers when she was two years old, she would stand at the top of the stairs and tell him a story filled with emotion (and in a language foreign to him) with her hands on her hips. Let’s just say she was a born storyteller.

 

They’re blissfully happy and love all things chocolate, books, music, movies, art, sports, trains, history, cooking and baking. Their mantra is to spread the Light.

 

Most of the time you can find them on Twitter or getting new ideas on how to spread the Light on Pinterest. They’re a proud member of ASMSG and Independent Author Network.

 

Sign up for their author newsletter and get exclusive content and prizes ow.ly/jWec308TabL 

 

In addition to being authors, they’re also book promoters/reviewers, social media marketers/influencers and the owners of N. N. Light Author Promotions. They both love books, have ever since they were young. Matching up books and readers is something that gives them great pleasure.

 

They’d love to connect with you either via email or via these various social media sites:

 

Website: http://princessofthelight.com

Blog: https://princessofthelight.wordpress.com

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/nnlight

Bookbub  https://www.bookbub.com/authors/n-n-light

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/NNP_W_Light

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/nnlight

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/n-n-light/90/1a7/902

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/118060034268079734144/posts

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/author/nnlight

Independent Author Network: http://www.independentauthornetwork.com/n-n-light.html

iAuthor: http://www.iauthor.uk.com/princess-of-the-light:10294

Don’t Look at Me by @JPGrider1 is a Modern-Day #BATB — Only Twisted! #romance


Don’t Look at Me
J.P. Grider
Publication date: May 2017
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

 

Haven:

A diligent hand carved this hole in my face.

It stole my confidence, my identity, and ended my short-lived career as a broadcast journalist.

I am now unemployed. Alone. Ugly.

And expected to get over it and move on.

Go on living life as usual—as if the world doesn’t judge the grotesquely unattractive.

 

Quest:

It’s been three years since I was kicked out of the Army for nearly killing the opposition’s militia commander with my bare hands.

I am now unemployed. Alone. Angry.

And expected to forget the nightmares that hold me hostage and move on.

Go on living life as usual—as if the world doesn’t judge a dishonorably discharged ex-soldier.

 

Don’t Look at Me is a modern-day Beauty and the Beast tale—reversed and twisted. Because even the ugly need a good story, and even the beautiful are ugly deep down.

 

Add to Goodreads

 

Author Bio:

 

J.P. Grider is a New Adult and Young Adult author. She is the author of seven novels. Her young adult series The Honor Trilogy consists of A Touch of Honor, A Man of Honor, and A Heart of Honor, while her first two novels – Unplugged (A Portrait of a Rock Star) and Maybe This Life – are standalone adult contemporary novels. Her most recent release is the new adult romance Mending Michael, which is the second in her Hunter Hill University series. The next book in the series – Reaching Rose – will be released in May, 2015. All the books in the Hunter Hill University series are standalone books and can be read in any order.

 

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

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Shifters & Glyphs (#FairyTales of the Magicorum #2) by @CB_Bauer #YA #Paranormal


Shifters & Glyphs
Christina Bauer
(Fairy Tales of the Magicorum, #2)
Published by: Monster House Books
Publication date: October 30th 2018
Genres: Paranormal, Young Adult

After being raised by the meanest fairies in the history of ever, Bryar Rose is now free to live her own life. For the first time, she’s attending West Lake Prep, a regular high school. Well, mostly regular. Some students are actually hidden members of the Magicorum. In other words, they’re really wizards, fairies, or shifters. Bry doesn’t mind, though. She’s thrilled to enjoy all the new experiences of being around normal kids her age, from locker pranks to lunchtime mystery meat. Everything is going along great, except for one thing.

 

Bry’s dreams about the pyramids of Egypt have gotten darker and more sinister. Every night, she sees her new man Knox and her best friend Elle in danger.

 

With no other choice, Bry plans to leave school to explore the pyramids on own. But her new man Knox discovers the scheme and is having none of it. He wants to stay by her side, no matter what. It’s a good thing too, because Bry must solve the mystery of her attraction to the pyramids and soon. Otherwise, it could cost the lives of those she loves most…and that means not only Knox, but also her best friend Elle.

 

Goodreads / Amazon / Kobo

 

Author Bio:

 

Christina Bauer knows how to tell stories about kick-ass women. In her best selling Angelbound series, the heroine is a part-demon girl who loves to fight in Purgatory’s Arena and falls in love with a part-angel prince. This young adult best seller has driven more than 500,000 ebook downloads and 9,000 reviews on Goodreads and retailers. It is now available as an audiobook on Audible and iTunes.

 

Bauer has also told the story of the Women’s March on Washington by leading PR efforts for the Massachusetts Chapter. Her pre-event press release—the only one sent out on a major wire service—resulted in more than 19,000 global impressions and redistribution by over 350 different media entities including the Associated Press.

 

Christina graduated from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School with BA’s in English along with Television, Radio, and Film Production. She lives in Newton, MA with her husband, son, and semi-insane golden retriever, Ruby.

 

Be the first to know about new releases from Christina by signing up for her newsletter: http://tinyurl.com/CBupdates

 

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Global Warming and the Power of YOU! Guest Post by @authorGaughan #MondayBlogs #GlobalWarming


DG_140618

 

My mission, once I decided to accept it, was to incorporate an important environmental message in an action adventure story that included a little sci-fi, fantasy and time travel. The result was Aaden Bluestar – The Awakening, a story about an ordinary boy who, after being struck by lightning, develops extraordinary powers and discovers his connection with an other-worldly race who are trying to save our world from ourselves … and they need our help to do it.

Global Warming and the Power of YOU!

 

When reading the above title, I can imagine you wondering how you can possibly make a difference with such a major issue as global warming. The answer may surprise you, particularly when the solution is disguised in a fictional book written for young adult readers. All I ask is that you keep an open mind.

 

Some believe that global warming is just a hoax, but regardless of whether you believe in global warming or not, we seem to be constantly reminded of climate change in the form of daily or weekly news items about extreme or unusual weather events. Regardless of whether these killer storms, tornadoes, hurricanes or tropical cyclones are the result of global warming or not, the end result is the same – climate change weather patterns seem to be increasing in frequency and intensity.

 

So now we come back to the question of how you, or I, or anyone else can make a difference.

 

I received a birthday card from a friend some years back and it had a simple but profound message. The card had a child’s drawing on the cover with a big sun smiley face and a hand-written poem by Sally Huss.

 

It read:

 

A happy person makes a happy home.

 

A happy home promotes a happy neighborhood.

 

Such a neighborhood affects a city, which in turn inspires a nation.

 

A happy nation helps create a happy world.

 

This simple poem summed up the message I was trying to get across with my story Aaden Bluestar – The Awakening. Of course, Aaden’s story has a lot more going for it than that simple message. It emphasizes environmental issues that affects us all and how each of us, as individuals, can make a difference. The story is told from Aaden’s perspective … a seemingly ordinary boy leading an ordinary life until a freak accident opens his extraordinary powers.

 

As reviewer Mrs. N expressed, Aaden is “such a delightful character to read. His witty nature and honest inner thoughts make him come alive off the page. I enjoyed the way he dealt with his school rival (not quite a bully but close). (Aaden is) someone who anyone can relate to and a joy to read.”

 

Okay, you’re probably still wondering how this affects you and how you can possibly make a difference. My friend Paulette, who sent me the birthday card, also included a hand written note inside the card. It was a quote from Colin P. Sisson, “What we vividly imagine, ardently desire, enthusiastically act upon, must inevitably come to pass.”

 

There are many who believe that creative visualization is just wishful thinking and there are just as many who believe it is real. The old saying “mind over matter” comes to mind and this is the main message portrayed in Aaden Bluestar – The Awakening. It’s understandable that some may think that such an enormous influence as global warming, or climate change or extreme weather patterns is out of anyone’s control, but there are equal numbers who believe that each of us as individuals can make a difference. I guess it comes back to the glass half full or glass half empty attitude.

 

Definitely, there are powers at play that are beyond anyone’s control. However, our attitude to such events is completely within our control. Events will unfold as time goes by and the impact of such events will vary from person to person. The same event may seem like a sword thrust to one and a pin-prick to another. A lot will depend on the attitude of the individual. Regardless of our station in life, good and bad things happen to all of us. When the trials come, it is often our individual attitude that makes the difference. No matter what, there is always something to be grateful for and when we concentrate on gratitude for the good things in our lives, it makes it easier to handle the stormier parts when they arrive.

 

Some might be skeptical about how this can be of any help with such major events as global warming, extreme weather and climate change, particularly when such events seem to be the result of major political and policy making decisions. At this point, maybe we should take another look at that simple poem again:

 

A happy person makes a happy home.

 

A happy home promotes a happy neighborhood.

 

Such a neighborhood affects a city, which in turn inspires a nation.

 

A happy nation helps create a happy world.

 

Yes, it seems simplistic in its message, but it starts with the individual. We need to keep in mind that political parties and policy makers are representing the people. When enough people are demanding change, the policy makers start taking notice. And if it’s already too late for change, as some may think, then at least as individuals we have the power and choice to concentrate on the positive rather than the negative – that is one thing that is within everyone’s control. As Adam, a character in Aaden Bluestar – The Awakening says, “There’s power in numbers. The more people with the same positive thought, the more powerful the effect.” From that perspective, we are co-creators of everything we see and experience in this world.

 

The extraordinary powers that Aaden develops after his accident might seem beyond the reach of ordinary people, but there are many who believe that these same powers are within each and every one of us – the same powers that are within YOU!

 

If you’re still unsure about the power within you to change your world, check out Aaden Bluestar – The Awakening https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RIMSS6G… and enjoy the ride!

 

Aaden Cover_titled_sm

 

Title: Aaden BlueStar – The Awakening

Author: David Gaughan

Genre: Sci-fi/Fantasy

Publisher: Astar Print

 

Book Blurb:

Never feeling quite at home in this world, an ordinary boy discovers his extraterrestrial heritage and superhuman powers when he is confronted by an alien foe. Discovering he is here on a time travel mission, his grip on reality is stretched when he realizes his father, who is running for President, is also not of this world. His best friend Fleur and his sister Tiffany are the only two he can confide in. Together with their extraterrestrial friends, they not only have to combat their alien foe, they also have to convince humanity to change their ways to prevent destroying their home through an environmental disaster. With climate change and extreme weather issues increasing in frequency and intensity, the clock is ticking!

 

Excerpt:

“Maybe it was a prophetic dream.”

“Prophetic?” said Jean. “Do you mean that all this is still to come … that it hasn’t happened yet … that it’s in the future?”

“Perhaps,” he replied with a shrug, implying ignorance.

“We both had the same dream,” Aaden repeated.

“Well, at least you’re accepting now that it was a dream,” he said, catching them both by surprise. “It’s not uncommon for people who are close to have same or similar dreams – that sort of thing has been documented.”

“I don’t believe you,” Aaden retorted. “Why would we have such a dream?”

“Perhaps the dream was showing you a possibility of what the future might hold. Perhaps it was showing you that it may not necessarily happen, that future events can be a direct result of the choices we make today?”

Aaden thought, “That’s the kind of statement a BlueStar would make. Besides, this is after the car accident, so he must be BlueStar, because it was after the accident that the change came over him.” He tried to tune into him, but his previous powers failed him. He decided to try and keep him talking to see if he’d say something that would make sense of their experiences.

“Are you talking about working towards world peace or doing one’s bit for the environment?” said Aaden.

“Both! Every one of us has the ability to help change our immediate environment and our world, to create the future we want.”

Jean and Aaden both stared at him. Even though he refused to acknowledge that he knew anything about the Astar Confederation, he was still talking like a Confederate BlueStar.

“Well that’s fine,” said Aaden. “But how do you get those ideas across to others, if we’re the only ones who had the dream?”

There was a noise from the staircase and they all turned to see Tiffany descending the stairs, looking rather bewildered. She glanced from one to the other, then, without saying a word, ran to the front door, flinging it open. She ran into Fleur coming the other way. They both stared at each other in amazement and then came into the house, looking confused.

“What’s going on?” said Fleur.

“Yeah,” said Tiffany. “This is how the world used to be. It’s almost as though we’ve gone back in time?”

Aaden looked quizzically at his father, who simply raised his eyebrows with feigned surprise and flashed an infuriating grin.

“It looks like you’re not the only ones who had the dream,” said Adam.

“Come on, Dad!” said Aaden. “Was it a dream or was it real?”

Adam sat back in his chair and took another sip of coffee, biding his time, infuriating them all with his relaxed attitude.

“What’s the difference?” he said. “When you’re dreaming, you’re convinced it’s real. It’s only when you awaken that you realize it was a dream. Who’s to say that what you think of as reality now is but a dream and you’ll only realize it when you finally wake up?”

“Seems pretty real to me,” said Tiffany.

Aaden got up and went to the fridge, determined to find something that would cast doubt on this so-called reality. He was curious to see if there’d be some of his favorite yoghurt – there was. Although he was surprised to find it, he was also a little disappointed to see that the container was nearly empty. He picked up a spoon and finished the contents, pleasantly surprised to find it even more delicious than he remembered it to be. Eyeing the trash can, he was tempted to throw the container into it, but then hesitated. Deliberately, he rinsed the container and threw it into the recycling bin.

He saw his Dad watching him, so he gave him a comical wink. “I suppose every little bit helps.”

“Yep!” said his Dad. “Even a small pebble tossed into a large pond will send ripples to the very edge of that pond.”

Aaden was initially taken aback by the strange comment, but decided to test him.

“How?” he said. “How can a single person make a difference?”

“Through thought,” his Dad replied simply. “Every action has a reaction … even with our thoughts. You can create harmony or disharmony in your life, with a single thought.”

“How can our thoughts affect the world?” said Fleur.

Adam gave her a wink. “Your thoughts affect others around you – and that in turn affects your world. It starts with the individual.”

Fleur stared at him, dumbfounded, as did Tiffany and Aaden.

“You’re saying that little ol’ me can make a difference in the world?” said Tiffany.

Aaden and Fleur both smiled at her comical tone.

“There’s power in numbers,” said Adam. “The more people with the same positive thought, the more powerful the effect.”

 

Buy Links:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RIMSS6G

 

Createspace https://www.createspace.com/6550223

 

Author Biography:

Born on the same day and month as Mark Twain, this Sagittarius has always been the explorer, not only in world travel pursuits but also alternative fringe subjects.

Having climbed the Great Pyramid of Cheops (and getting arrested doing so), some of his other world experiences included riding camels in the Sahara Desert, white-water rafting at the top of the Ganges river, fire walking on a weekend retreat, hot air ballooning in the Cappadocia Region in Turkey and visiting ashrams in Northern India. Much of David’s overseas travel has been fueled by his keen interest in metaphysical subjects.

 

Social Media Links:

Twitter https://twitter.com/authorgaughan

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13428937.David_Gaughan

Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KDZKOM

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/david.gaughan.967

Of Glitter and Gold: A Canary Club Anthology by @AuthorSherry #historicalfiction #YA


Of Glitter and Gold: A Canary Club Anthology
Sherry D. Ficklin
Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication date: March 27th 2017
Genres: Historical, Young Adult

Set during the flamboyant anything-goes era of 1920’s America, these three tales are filled with intriguing characters and rich imagery from the time period—with flappers, jazz music, gangsters, and lavish wealth. Escape to a different decade today with the compelling stories of the Canary Club Anthology.

 

Novelette 1- Gilded Cage

Masie, the flaxen-haired daughter of notorious bootlegger Dutch Schultz, returns home from boarding school to find her family in crisis. Her mother is dangerously unstable, her father’s empire is on the brink of ruin, and the boy she once loved has become a ruthless killer for hire. To keep her family’s dangerous secrets, Masie is forced into a lie that will change the course of her future—and leave her trapped in a gilded cage of her own making.

 

Novelette 2- All That Glitters

A dame with brains, moxie, and killer curves, June West isn’t your average flapper. She’s managed to endear herself to the son of one of the most powerful gangsters in New York, earning herself a spot in the limelight that she’s always longed for. With the infamous playboy at her side, June has become accustomed to living the high life. Lavish parties, expensive clothes, sparkling jewels—nothing is beyond her reach. But when her carefully woven web of lies finally catches up with her, she must make an impossible choice… come clean about her past and risk losing everything, or find a way to bury her demons—once and for all.

 

Novelette 3 – Nothing Gold

Dickey has been down on his luck since the day he was born. Flat broke and sick of being looked down on, he meets young socialite Lillian at a wild party. The connection is like a strike of lightning. From a wealthy New York family, this debutante is everything he’s been told he can never have—and the only thing he wants. Determined to win her, he knows the only way to get her parents approval is with cold hard cash. So when a shot at the biggest score of his life comes around, he just can’t refuse…

 

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NOTHING GOLD EXCERPT:

It’s easier than I imagined to sneak into the party. The music is so loud and the crowd so enormous that no one sees me wind my way through the shrubs on the outskirts. The massive estate is far enough away from the city that I had to hitch a ride to get here, and I’ll have to time my exit just right to make the train back to Manhattan.

Brushing off my secondhand suit coat, I enter the party via the back patio. A wide pool is filled with people, most still in their fancy evening wear. My eyes slide past them, searching for the one person at this shindig that I know. I scan past butlers with white gloves holding silver trays covered in champagne glasses, past gleeful dames in short skirts with blood-red lips, and past gents in their glad rags I can tell with one glance cost more dough than I make in a year working at the mill.

When I finally see him, his pinstripe suit, matching fedora, and red pocket square, he’s standing atop the massive staircase on the ledge overlooking the party. Deacon Brewer, the reason I’m here tonight. His hands are stuffed in the pockets of his trousers as he chats up a fella I don’t recognize, along with the dame hanging off his arm. Plastering on an easy grin, I wind my way through the people, helping myself to a glass of bubbly as I head for the stairs. The stone steps are covered in gold confetti, the whole place practically dripping with it. Long, red velvet drapes hang from arched windows, and leafless branches painted gold and draped with crystal beads sit in tall vases in every corner. Nothing has been left un-gilded.

I shake my head at the audacity. Might as well have a neon sign—someone, please rob the joint.

Deacon sees me coming and dismisses himself from his conversation, welcoming me with an open hand.

“Dickey Lewis, glad you could make it, boy,” he offers warmly.

As if I had a choice.

“Of course, Mr. Brewer,” I respond with more warmth than I feel. Truth is that I’m in deep to Deacon after a few bad bets at his club last month, and he opted to make me work it off rather than take it outta my hide. I suppose that makes him clever, but I can’t help the gnawing feeling that this is a debt I may never fully repay. “What’s the score?” I ask, lowering my voice.

Draping an arm across my shoulders, he walks me through the glass doors and into the house. Still crammed with people drinking, dancing, and generally wrecking the joint, he pulls a cigar from his vest pocket with his free hand.

“Upstairs in the den is a lovely Monet, behind which is a very large safe. Cash, some baubles, and a bankbook are inside. I don’t care about the rest; you take what you need. But the bankbook needs to find its way into my hands tomorrow morning by eight am.”

I take a deep breath, rolling my tongue over my teeth before answering, “How am I supposed to get into the safe?”

He barks a deep laugh, slapping me on the back. “Guess you’ll have to get a little creative. Just get in, get out, and don’t let nobody see ya, got it?”

All I can do is nod and watch him swagger away. Sure, I’ve boosted loot before, but always simple jobs, smash and grabs. Nothing like this. What have I gotten myself into this time?

Still, whatever else is in there is mine for the taking, I tell myself. Could be a big pay day, judging by the looks of the place.

I wander casually through the house, trying to look as if I belong while also counting the number of cops and guards watching the area. It’s not as many as I expected. I grab a dark-haired dame by the waist, offering her a charming smile and asking for a dance. We Charleston together for two songs, finally stopping to imbibe more champagne. When I ‘accidently’ stumble into her, she spills the contents of her glass on my jacket, fumbling a wide-eyed apology.

Waving her off with a smile, I hand her my glass, “You take this, and I’ll go find a place to wash up.”

“You could always take a dip in the pool, honey,” she says, batting her eyelashes.

Beside her, a gentleman points up a secondary set of stairs near the front door. “Washroom is up there, I think.”

I mutter a thanks and a promise to return, then make my way up the stairs, continuing to stumble around as if drunk, occasionally opening a door to find a couple necking or a room full of folks smoking the Indian hop in long pipes.

Finally, the thumping of the music fading below me, I make my way to the library. Beyond that, I find the only locked door on the entire floor. Digging into my pocket, I pull out my lock kit, a simple flattened iron jimmy and a hooked pick. Sliding both in the lock, I slide them back and forth, listening for the mechanism inside to release. It doesn’t take long and the door springs open, allowing me to step inside and close it quickly behind me. It’s dark except for the glow of a single lamp atop a massive oak desk, behind which is a tall arched window overlooking the front of the estate. From this spot, I can see the cars lined up along the circular drive, partygoers coming and going in wild abandon. Pulling the pocket watch from my vest, I wipe my fingers across the cracked glass face, checking the time. Only thirty minutes until the train. If I miss it, it’ll be two hours before the next one. Not the end of the world, unless someone notices the lift before I’m gone. That’s a long time to stick around with a pocket fulla stolen goods.

I glance around me, the blood chilling in my veins. Every wall except the one with the window is covered in framed paintings. And I have no idea which one is a Monet.

Scrambling, I begin lifting each, checking the wall behind for any sign of the safe. Finally, on the opposite wall from where I started, I find it. Carefully lifting the heavy canvas free, I set it on the floor and turn my attention to the wall safe. It’s not large, about the size of a bread box with a spinning combination dial in the center. Unsure what else to do, I pull the pocket knife free from my trousers and flick it open, trying to wedge it between the door and the frame. As soon as I do, I know it’s going to be futile. The thing is heavy steel; no way my knife is gonna bust it open. Putting it away, I begin spinning the dial at random, praying I’ll get lucky.

I’m so flustered I don’t hear the door open or the footsteps from behind me until it’s too late.

“It’s my birthday,” a voice offers, making me spin, hands balled into fists to fight my way free from the room.

The dame is tall, her garnet-red hair rolled into bouncy curls and pinned in a messy heap at the back of her neck. Her dress is green, almost the same color as her eyes, and it hugs her slender frame as if it were a second skin. Even the long strings of pearls twined around her neck seems completely natural, not just a decoration but an extension of her. I take a breath, blinking, momentarily stunned. She drapes one hand on her hip, her entire body listing to the side as she points to the safe.

“The combination,” she repeats. “It’s my birthday.”

Finally recovering my voice, I stammer. “I was, uh, just…”

The corners of her mouth turn upward. “Breaking into my father’s safe?”

I don’t know what to say. I feel her in the room, the way one might feel the air change right before a storm, a heaviness that settles in, leaving my soul with a sense of foreboding. My instincts battle inside me. Do I grab her and tie her to a chair, or do I flee? The weight of her gaze makes it impossible to think clearly.

“Relax,” she says, raising a glass I hadn’t noticed her holding to her lips and taking a slow drink. “I’m not calling the guards if that’s what you’re worried about.”

“Oh? You’re just gonna let me crack this safe and walk away with whatever’s inside?”

She shrugs. “It’s not my money. What do I care?”

I lick my lips, sizing her up. A spoiled little rich girl who wants to stick it to Daddy. I’ve seen a few of those in my day. I can work with this—if I can get my head back on straight. It’s not like me to get so flustered by a dame, not even a high-quality one like this.

“Besides…” She sets the glass on the desk and saunters toward me. “It’s not like we don’t have enough.”

I catch a hint of her perfume in the air when she brushes by me, lavender and something else I can’t quite place. Taking the dial in her hand, she spins the knob until the door finally clicks, then she steps back, giving me a go-ahead gesture.

I hesitate, flicking glances at the bare skin where her neck meets her shoulder, at the creamy whiteness of her skin, before settling my eyes on her face. “What’s your name, doll?”

She looks down, sheepishly at first, but then raises just her eyes to look at me with an expression of bold defiance. “I’ll tell you mine if you tell me yours.”

I swallow, considering her offer. She’s already gotten a good look at me, enough to rat me out to the cops. The look on her face is one of challenge, I realize. She’s daring me to trust her.

“Dickey,” I say, pulling the flat cap off my head and holding it over my heart as I bow to her. “Dickey Lewis, at your service, Miss?”

“Lillian Rose Duke,” she answers. “But my friends call me Lilly.”

Replacing my hat, I grab the safe handle and twist, pulling open the heavy door. Grabbing a large wooden box first, I hold it out to her. Moving back, I grab two stacks of fresh bills and stuff them in the pockets of my suitcoat. Finding the bankbook last, I tuck it into the back of my pants before pulling my shirt and jacket over it.

I spin to Lilly, watching as she upends the box, spilling jewelry onto the desk in a pile. She picks through it, finally just scooping it all into her hand and sauntering over to me. Getting so close I feel the warmth of her, she grabs the lapel of my jacket, sliding the gold and stones into the inside pocket.

“Give these to your girl, Dickey Lewis.”

She releases my lapel, but doesn’t step away. Instead, she leans forward. Thinking she’s going to kiss me, I straighten in anticipation, but she just trails her fingers along my collar until she’s cupping the back of my neck.

“I ain’t got no girl,” I admit, my heart pounding behind my ribs.

“Well, isn’t that a shame?” she says, her lips a hair’s breadth from mine.

Unable to resist, I close the final distance between us, clutching her by the waist as I urge her lips to mine. I’ve never tasted gold before, but I imagine this is what it would be like—champagne, honey, and nerves of steel. When she finally pulls away, I’m gasping. Tugging tugs the white linen handkerchief from my pocket, she wipes my face, then hers, of her smeared lipstick before returning the hankie to its place.

“I hope to see you around, Dickey Lewis.”

With that, she spins on her heel and heads for the door, listening for a moment before pulling it open and stepping out. The room is instantly colder, the air thinner. I can finally breathe, can think.

As I slink from the party and disappear into the shadows, making my way down the street to the train station, I can’t force the sight of her from my mind, or the taste of her from my lips.

Even if it takes every penny in my pocket and every breath in my body, I will see Lillian Rose Duke again.

 

 

Author Bio:

 

Sherry D. Ficklin is a full time writer from Colorado where she lives with her husband, four kids, two dogs, and a fluctuating number of chickens and house guests. A former military brat, she loves to travel and meet new people. She can often be found browsing her local bookstore with a large white hot chocolate in one hand and a towering stack of books in the other. That is, unless she’s on deadline at which time she, like the Loch Ness monster, is only seen in blurry photographs.

 

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The Wolf Mirror by Caroline Healy @CHealyFiction #bookreview #YA #timetravel


The Wolf Mirror
Caroline Healy
Publication date: February 14th 2017
Genres: Historical, Romance, Young Adult

Changing places doesn’t always help you see things differently.

 

Cassie throws the first punch in a brawl at Winchester Abbey Girl’s School. Her subsequent suspension is a glitch in Cassie’s master plan; Finish School/Get Job/Leave Home (and never come back). As punishment her mother banishes her to Ludlow Park, their creepy ancestral home. In the dark of a stormy night Cassie finds herself transported to 1714, the beginning of the Georgian period.

 

With the help of a lady’s maid and an obnoxious gentleman, Mr Charles Stafford, Cassie must unravel the mysterious illness afflicting Lord Miller. If Lord Miller kicks the bucket the house goes to Reginald Huxley, the brainless cousin from London.

 

Cassie’s task is to figure out who is poisoning the Lord of Ludlow without exposing herself to the ridicule of her peers, getting herself committed to the asylum or worse, married off to the first man who will have her.

 

Cassie must learn to hold her tongue, keep her pride in check and reign in her rebellious nature – because the fate of her entire family, for generations, rests on her shoulders.

 

Meanwhile, Lady Cassandra Miller frantically searches for her smelling salts or her trusted governess Miss. Blythe, whose soothing advice she would dearly love. Instead Cassandra finds some woman and a boy squatting in the Ludlow mansion; her father, her lady’s maid and all the servants have magically disappeared.

 

Tell-a-vision, the In-her-net, horseless carriages and women wearing pantaloons; Cassandra is afraid that she might have inhaled fowl air causing her to temporarily lose her senses.

 

Only when both girls can get over their pride, societal prejudices and self-importance will they be able to return to their rightful century. Until then, they are free to wreak maximum damage on their respective centuries.

 

Book Review:

After getting into a fight with a bully, Cassie is suspended from her prestigious school. Her mother has had enough and Cassie, her mother and her brother take a trip to Ludlow Park. Normally, this wouldn’t be a bad thing but there’s no internet to speak of at their ancestral home and it’s way too creepy.

Cassie goes wandering for a place to sneak a cigarette when she discovers an antique mirror with four wolf heads surrounding it. Before she can take a step back, it sucks her into a vortex and she finds herself in Ludlow Park in the year 1714.

At the exact same time, Lady Cassandra (in the year 1714) discovers the same mirror and is flung forward to the present. Two girls with the same name swap places and once over the Freaky Friday moment, are determined to get back to their retrospective time periods. Will they learn what they’re meant to learn in time or will they forever be in the wrong century?

I really enjoyed this book. The premise and cover intrigued me. I connected immediately with modern-day Cassie while I found it a hair difficult to relate to Cassandra. The historical part seemed, at times, forced and not realistic. The romance, for what it’s worth, was more hype than anything else. The ending, however, was superb and the way the author tied everything together impressed me.

If you like historical fiction with a twist, give this a try. The plot progresses at a fast pace once the time flip happens. Highly enjoyable.

My Rating: 4 stars

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Author Bio:

 

Caroline Healy is a writer and community arts facilitator. She recently completed her M.A. in Creative Writing at the Seamus Heaney Centre, Queen’s University. She alternates her time between procrastination and making art.

 

In 2012 her award winning short story collection A Stitch in Time was published by Doire Press. Fiction and commentary has been featured in publications across Ireland, the U.K. and more recently in the U.S. Caroline’s work can be found in journals such as Wordlegs,The Bohemyth, Short Story Ireland, Short Stop U.K., Five Stop Story, Prole, Literary Orphans and the Irish Writers’ Centre Lonely Voice.

 

Her debut Y.A. novel, Blood Entwines was published by Bloomsbury Spark in August 2014 and she is in the process of writing the second book in the series, Blood Betrayal, as well as a short story collection, The House of Water.

 

She has a fondness for dark chocolate, cups of tea and winter woollies.

 

(More details can be found on her website http://www.carolinehealy.com)

 

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An Ominous Book by Nancy Foster @drafoxter #bookreview #fantasy #FridayReads


An Ominous Book

 

Title: An Ominous Book (An Ominous Book series, book 1)

Author: Nancy Foster

Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Young Adult

 

Book Blurb:

Lord Spaulding’s life seemed perfect. The elusive mortal elf rules the Kasimma Clan and lives in the quaint but pleasant city of Tesafar. His perfectly stable life has ended up in haywire when his best friend Trevilin left two unwanted guests at his doorstep one autumn day: two orphan children from a disgraced noble family that just happen to be his long-lost blood relatives named Richard and Nelida Earlrose.

 

Spaulding must now find the way to bring these two children back to their nation and along the way, destroy a dangerous piece of sorcery that is hidden in his castle before King Salman and the Äimite guard find out.

 

My Review:

This book was a rollicking, fun, good time that is made for kids of all ages to enjoy!

 

You have elves, castles, magic, sword fights, magical beasts, criminals, danger, laughter, fun and adventure.  This would make an exceptional movie series or television show.  There is no bullying of the children and the fun tends to outweigh anxious parts, for the most part.

 

My favorite scene is the rescue of Richard from the criminals.  It is brilliant and I read it twice!  Just fantastic how the Water Sage used the sword to wipe out the criminals.

 

I didn’t care for Froylan or King Salman, for the most part.  The end of the book lost me.  I can’t comprehend how ******* (bleeped character name to avoid spoliers) becomes the most powerful witch/warlock and can destroy everything.  I didn’t enjoy the ending and that took this book from 5 stars to 4 stars.  Still, a fun read overall.

 

 

My Rating:  4 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Ominous-Book-book-ebook/dp/B01M0BZF0E

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32478959-an-ominous-book

 

Author Biography:

I’m probably an oddball among authors because I never studied a liberal arts degree. I never gave writing any interest until I had an amusing concept for a YA fantasy book series and long story short, I started to write for fun. Before I knew it a little over a year later, I finished 6 novels of the series and have a 7th novel that remains half-finished.

When I’m not fighting with busted typewriters and filling out TPS reports, in my free time I go to weird places on vacation and love it!!! 😃

 

Social Media Links:

Blog http://anominousbook.blogspot.ca/

Twitter http://www.twitter.com/drafoxter

Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/Nancy-Foster/e/B01MF8UFOK/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

Goodreads Author Page https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16064085.Nancy_Foster

 

Reviewed by: Mr. N

Every Song is a Possibility… Chasing Eveline by @LHauser27 #YA #YALit #CoverReveal


Chasing Eveline
Leslie Hauser
Published by: Pen Name Publishing
Publication date: July 11th 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult

 

Sixteen-year-old Ivy Higgins is the only student at Carmel Heights High School who listens to cassettes. And her binder is the only one decorated with album artwork by 80s band Chasing Eveline. Despite being broken-up since 1989, this rock band out of Ireland means everything to Ivy. They’re a reminder of her mom, who abandoned Ivy and her dad two years ago. Now the music of her mom’s favorite band is the only connection she has left.

 

Even though Ivy wavers between anger and a yearning to reconnect, she’s one-hundred percent certain she’s not ready to lose her mom forever. But the only surefire way to locate her would be at a Chasing Eveline concert. So with help from her lone friend Matt—an equally abandoned soul and indie music enthusiast—Ivy hatches a plan to reunite the band.

 

The road to Ireland won’t be easy, though. And not just because there is no road. Along the way they’ll have to win over their Lady Gaga-loving peers, tangle with some frisky meerkats, and oh yeah, somehow find and persuade the four members to play a reunion gig. It’s a near-impossible task, but Ivy has to try. If she can’t let go of the past, she’ll never be able to find joy in the present.

 

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Author Bio:

 

Leslie Hauser is a YA writer and middle school teacher. She has a B.A. in English from UCLA and a Master’s degree in Educational Administration. She was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, and currently resides in Los Angeles, California, with her dog Mr. Darcy.

 

When Leslie is not living in fictional worlds inside her head, she runs all sorts of distances, tortures her body at CrossFit, and DVRs entirely too many television shows. She dreams of one day returning to the Midwest to live on a farm. Or perhaps owning a cookie delivery service.

 

Her debut novel Chasing Eveline releases 2017 from Pen Name Publishing.

 

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#FridayReads: Aaden BlueStar by @authorGaughan #YA #scifi #bookreview


Aaden Bluestar

 

Title: Aaden BlueStar: The Awakening (Aaden BlueStar series Book 1)

Author: David Gaughan

Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction

 

Book Blurb:

At fifteen, Aaden Greene is imbued with extraordinary powers after a freak incident. Astounded by his powerful abilities he’s also confused by the terrifying vision of the monstrous apparition that appears before him at the time of his metaphysical awakening. Struggling to blend his ordinary life with visions of other lifetimes in extraterrestrial realms, he discovers his connection with an ET who has come to save our world. What amazes him most is the connection between the charismatic E.T. with whom he has been closely connected throughout the ages and his father, a Senator running for President on an environmental ticket. With each heart-pounding moment, the ensuing battle between the extraterrestrial BlueStar Beings and the formidable entity of Aaden’s earlier vision requires them to join forces to combat that negative energy. With an environmental backlash, the future of Earth and the survival of the human race depend on their success.

 

My Review:

In a flash of lightning, fifteen-year-old Aaden’s life is forever changed. Climbing a tree trying to get a prized baseball, Aaden gets struck by lightning. His friends worry but by some miracle, he’s not dead. Instead, he’s awakened latent powers and scary visions. His powers come in handy at school and home but trying to appear “normal” gets harder and harder.

 

Meanwhile, there’s an extraterrestrial war taking place just north of Earth, somewhere near Mars. A dark force is trying to infiltrate Earth and it’s up to the Bluestar beings to stop it. But they need help to avoid this environmental disaster so they call on Aaden and his family. The future of Earth is in their hands. Can Aaden use his natural abilities and skills to defeat the enemy or is the fate of humanity doomed?

 

I really loved this unique science fiction book. Who knew that lightning could “awaken” alien powers? Aaden and his friends are portrayed realistically yet in modern times. I loved the extraterrestrial dynamics and politics which added to the believability of the plot. Filled with all kinds of action, dramatic tension and meaningful messages, this is a fantastic read! While I found the environmental sub-plot a tad heavy-handed, it made sense considering the rest of the story.

 

I highly recommend this book to ages 12 and up for complexity of the English language as well as situations. Both teens and adults will enjoy this clean science fiction adventure.

 

Favorite Character: Aaden. He’s such a delightful character to read. His witty nature and honest inner thoughts make him come alive off the page. I enjoyed the way he dealt with his school rival (not quite a bully but close). Someone who anyone can relate to and a joy to read.

 

Favorite Quote: “There’s power in numbers,” said Adam. “The more people with the same positive thought, the more powerful the effect.”

 

My Rating:  4.5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Aaden-BlueStar-Awakening-Book-ebook/dp/B00RIMSS6G

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32141790-aaden-bluestar

 

Author Biography:

Born on the same day and month as Mark Twain, this Sagittarius has always been the explorer, not only in world travel pursuits but also alternative fringe subjects.

 

Having climbed the Great Pyramid of Cheops (and getting arrested doing so), some of his other world experiences included riding camels in the Sahara Desert, white-water rafting at the top of the Ganges river, fire walking on a weekend retreat, hot air ballooning in the Cappadocia Region in Turkey and visiting ashrams in Northern India. Much of David’s overseas travel has been fueled by his keen interest in metaphysical subjects. In his earlier years he witnessed, along with three other people, a sighting of a UFO mother ship and four smaller craft, and that was the catalyst for him to research that subject, also in connection with established world viewpoints and how ancient prophecies might hold the clue to our past and future. Having had close friends and relatives affected by ill health, David’s writing incorporates a wide variety of subjects, from natural healing techniques and alternative living guidelines through to fictional works for both young and older readers, his writing influenced by the rich tapestry of life experiences.

 

Social Media Links:

Twitter http://www.twitter.com/authorGaughan

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13428937.David_Gaughan

Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KDZKOM

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

The Game Begins by Victoria Danann @vdanann #YALit #books #fantasy


The Game Begins
Victoria Danann
Publication date: February 27th 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Young Adult

When it came to the attention of the old ones that their creations, the Earth gods, had been playing games at the expense of humankind for millennia, they put a stop to it. But the rebellious gods were far too addicted to their games to give them up. After several summit meetings, they voted to use their own children as players and locate the playing field in the most treacherous environment in the known universe. High school.

 

To make it even more interesting, they would strip their children of their memories and withhold the rules of the game. The players believed they were ordinary kids until they were transferred to R. Caine High School. When odd things begin to happen, the players gradually realize they have special gifts or attributes. But that doesn’t mean they can’t die.

 

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EXCERPT:

My name is Ever Moore.

I know. It makes me wince every time I say it. When I’m eighteen, I plan to have it legally changed to something that doesn’t make people laugh. But right now I’m stuck.

My dad thinks puns are the highest form of humor. He calls it ‘word play’. That’s right. I’m the spawn of nerds. My dad creates video games. My mother is an ethics professor at UCLA who thinks the battle between good and evil begins at home.

If you want to know just how weird it can get at the Thanksgiving table, I can go one better. My grandfather was a big deal rock star in the seventies. You wouldn’t know the name of the band. So there’s no point in name dropping. After a visit, he exits with a two-finger peace salute like all the other well-adjusted hippie grandparents, but he doesn’t say, “Peace.”

He says, “Rock steady.”

Ugh!

My family is big on manners. They’re too strict to let me say what I think, especially about Buzz’s love life. My grandfather doesn’t want to be called Grandpa or Grandad or Gramps or anything close to normal. Oh no. He wants to be called ‘Buzz’. I have no idea why. That is not his name.

Anyway, the best protest I can mount is rolling my eyes. I keep trying to get his attention and roll my eyes back further into my head when he does the ‘rock steady’ thing, but he will not be deterred.

Anyway I was leading a completely typical and deliciously angsty teenage life in Austin, Texas when my parents were suddenly offered jobs in the LA area at the same time. It was weird, but weird is part of my normal. Always has been.

Since my grandad, the rocker, still lives in LA with the latest girlfriend who’s barely legal – she’s two years older than I am and her name is Charmin, yes, like the toilet paper. If that was my name, I’d have the decency to go by something like Charm, which would really be making lemonade from lemmons. But not Charmin. I don’t think she’s bright enough to understand what people are thinking whenever they say her name. Anyway, with the jobs and the fact that ‘Buzz’ lives there, moving seemed like a good idea.

To them.

 

Author Bio:

 

New York Times bestselling author of seventeen romances including paranormal, scifi, fantasy, contemporary, and teen. Victoria’s Knights of Black Swan series won BEST PARANORMAL ROMANCE SERIES and PARANORMAL ROMANCE NOVEL OF THE YEAR the past FOUR YEARS IN A ROW. This past year two of her series took the top two places and two of her books took first and second place Paranormal Romance of the Year category. – Reviewers Choice Awards, The Paranormal Romance Guild.

 

Victoria is co-host of the popular ROMANCE BETWEEN THE PAGES podcast.

http://www.romancecast.com

 

WEBSITE: → http://www.VictoriaDanann.com

FACEBOOK: → http://www.facebook.com/victoriadanannbooks

 

The rich characterizations come from being a lifelong student of behavior, casually, and a serious student of behavior academically. She has also studied comparative religion, myths, and Dark Ages history.

 

Victoria lives in The Woodlands, Texas with her husband and a very smart, mostly black German Shepherd dog.

 

 

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Shattering Truths by @KyrianLyndon Blog Tour: #GuestPost + #Giveaway! #books




 

Shattering Truths
Kyrian Lyndon
(Deadly Veils, #1)
Publication date: January 30th 2017
Genres: Suspense, Young Adult

 

She was left fighting her demons alone . . .

 

For sixteen-year-old Danielle DeCorso, the old house in Glastonbury was an eerie place to grow up. Coping with mental health challenges exacerbated by a traumatic family dynamic, Danielle watches from the window for two men in a dusty black sedan who keep circling the house and harassing her with phone calls. The two predators drugged her and her cousin, Angie, and then lured them from Pleasure Beach in Bridgeport to a secluded cottage on Long Beach West. She remembers feeling dizzy, the room spinning. She recalls screaming, crying, fighting, and then slipping in and out of consciousness. Angie, however, has no recollection of the incident.

 

When Danielle attempts to jog Angie’s memory and convince their best friend, Farran, that the two strangers had victimized them, no one seems to believe her. Alone in her pain, Danielle remains guarded, obsessed, and withdrawn. Soon she is sinking deeper into a tumultuous world of adolescent isolation and change. Grief, guilt, and anger send her spiraling into an even darker place.

 

Tormented by terrifying nightmares, she fears she will lose her sanity, or possibly her soul. Is she having post-traumatic stress hallucinations, as one of her friends suggest, or are her recurring nightmares as real as they seem? Trapped in an unyielding emotional bondage, Danielle continues the fight to reclaim her power. Startling revelations awaken her newfound spirit, inspiring a once naïve girl to grow into a woman of defiance and courage.

 

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IN THE DIMMEST LIGHT: A Guest Post

I wake up at four a.m. every day, including weekends and holidays, and write for hours. It starts with nothing more than a 40-watt amber-shade lamp lit in the darkest hours, where I can see the moon outside my window. The focus is intense. It is light before long.

 

Creating characters and the worlds they live in began as a childhood obsession. I wrote down names then added descriptions, developing their stories by continuing to add details. I had no idea why I did this at the time. My parents worried for a while. They relaxed a bit as I went on to write fairy tales and poems. When I wrote my first novel at 16, I used parts of those descriptions.

 

I held many jobs since then – secretary, assistant book manufacturing representative, assistant to the casting director, computer system administrator, and paralegal/legal assistant. One summer, I was shooting photos for a model’s portfolio. Another day I’d be chatting with musicians about putting a band together. My ego was insatiable, so I was all over the place, wanting to do everything. I told myself, all I want to do is write while being sidetracked at every turn.

 

Life went on, rife with challenges, full of adventures. I roamed the darkest corners to learn about the world and myself. Setbacks knocked me down. I would get up eventually and find my way again.

 

More and more so, I began telling my story in the novels I wrote. I became so immersed in the reality of it, I would not steer off its course long enough to let my imagination truly come alive. I started over several times until I realized I didn’t sign on for this to tell my story. A storyteller can tell any story she wants, and so I was back on track.

 

To be fair, I learned about the book publishing process working in publishing. I chased down literary agents, got a press kit, and formed a writer’s club. I continued to educate myself about writing. I subscribed to the relevant publications. I contributed to an anthology, had letters published. There were assignments and proposals I turned down wanting to be true to myself and the integrity of my work. I was devoted to mastering my craft.

 

I realize, too, I’d been busy healing. It was necessary for me to find the courage to free myself of belief systems that kept me in bondage. Until we fully heal, we remain in bondage to something or another and prone to all kinds of obsession. Disentangling from all that is a painful process and a lot of work but well worth it. Past turmoil is the baggage we can carry forever or make lighter and less cumbersome by checking it.

 

Perhaps it’s different for everyone, but the process is the same. It is discovering what you do not want nor want to be; who or what impedes you; who and what strengthens you. Learning to trust your instincts is essential. If I couldn’t do that as a human being, I surely could not do it as a writer.

 

In the healing process, I got a much-needed downsizing of ego. I went from “needing” attention to shying away from it with a reluctance to put myself out there. I am a firm believer that when it comes to extremes, neither extreme is right. It had to be somewhere in the middle. It’s been all about balance for me.

 

Becoming a parent along the way helped. It is a rare and unconditional love, and love of that magnitude motivates you to be the best person you can ever hope to be. It lifts you out of victimhood and allows you to live as the empowered hero in your own heart and to set the example.

 

Today I feel the greatest gift I have to give anyone is a true and genuine heart. That means questioning my intentions and, if necessary, correcting my steps.

 

Now, with a clear view of the story I want to tell, I’ve been busy incorporating my past novels into a series that could be six to eight books and possibly more. I have outlined and drafted the series and am in the process of finalizing.

 

I’m grateful to have a passion, something I love to do, and get to spend time doing every day – a joy that saves me, always.

 

© Copyright July 14, 2014 by Kyrian Lyndon at kyrianlyndon.com. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted without permission.

 

 

Author Bio:

 

Kyrian Lyndon is the author of Shattering Truths, the first book in her Deadly Veils series. She has also published two poetry collections, A Dark Rose Blooms, and Remnants of Severed Chains. Kyrian began writing short stories and fairy tales when she was just eight years old. In her adolescence, she moved on to poetry. At sixteen, while working as an editor for her high school newspaper, she wrote her first novel, and then completed two more novels at the ages of nineteen and twenty-five.

 

Born and raised in Woodside, Queens, New York, Kyrian was the middle of three daughters born to immigrants —her father from Campochiaro, Italy; her mother from Havana, Cuba. She has worked primarily in executive-level administrative positions with major New York publishing companies. She resides on Long Island in New York.

 

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Judge by the Cover: High School, Drama & Deadly Vices by @abielleamiel #YA #books #FREE


 hsh-1-book-cover

 

Title: Judge by the Cover: High School, Drama & Deadly Vices (Hafu Sans Halo Book 1)

Author: Melissa Abigail

Genre: Coming-of-Age/YA Romance-Suspense

 

Book Blurb:

Campbelton looks like a city at peace; Yet, just below the surface Lie certain dangers— Crime, corruption, and a community divided. Haruna Mitsukai is an overachiever with dreams of attending the University of British Columbia. Ryu Debiru is a bad boy whose only desire is to escape this ridiculous prison called “life.” Both attend Shady Glenn Academy and despite their similar “hafu”, half Japanese identity, they couldn’t despise each other more. Years of avoidance comes to an end when a major assignment on Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice pairs them together. Just as everything reaches a breaking point, revelations about an old East Side mansion called “Heaven” causes Haruna to question everything she thought she knew about him. As for Ryu? Well, all that glitters is most certainly not gold.

 

Excerpt:

Leaving everything but her messenger bag behind, Haruna slipped through the arching doorway. She didn’t have to go far to find the nearest exit. Ryu stood several metres beyond it. A haze of grey spilled upwards in tangled wisps from his nostrils. He paid no mind to her as he hovered at the curb of a walkway, shoulder eased against a brick wall. He returned the cigarette to his lips. Whether it was the solitude or the nicotine, he was thoroughly enjoying it. His thoughts, maybe they were miles away from the things they had said to each other just minutes ago. But what was it about him? Just before, he was upset. Now he was so detached, uncaring, unfeeling, and all of a sudden, not even appearing angry at all.

Haruna wondered how someone could let go of such strong emotions so quickly.

 

She wasn’t at all like that.

 

And though she had come to apologize, something about all of this, watching him like this made her cross. He wasn’t intimidating to her at all now. He was disgusting. Living in apathy? In so many ways he was throwing his life away.

 

“Do you really have to do that right now?” Haruna asked.

 

He didn’t turn to acknowledge her, but it was clear he had heard from the way his brows furrowed together. His mouth drew into something of a sneer.

 

“Actually, yeah. Helps me deal with stress.”

 

Once he’d spoken, he crooked his head towards her, deliberately blowing smoke through his mouth.

 

Haruna glowered at the cigarette in his left hand, every atomic particle in her body urging her to retreat, but some small part of her conscience telling her to be brave and resist in spite of herself. She obeyed her mind and approached. Once face-to-face, she could feel the smoke sting in her nose. She coughed.

 

“Oh, yeah?” she managed. “You have stress? What stress?”

 

He regarded her beadily, puffing in her direction.

 

“You.”

 

“Oh, I’m stress? Fine. If you want to do stupid things and kill yourself, go on ahead. Just know second-hand smoke is more dangerous than—” The smoke hit her hard. Haruna clutched the base of her neck and shut her eyes. She tried not to inhale, but her lungs were screaming for air. She stepped back and gasped. The hacking cough started again. She felt her chest throb.

She blinked, slowly, barely hearing Ryu’s voice.

 

“What’s up with you?”

 

Haruna glanced up. Ryu had moved closer, arms at his sides. He looked at her strangely. Again she glared at the cigarette pinched between his fingers, in her mind cursing the putrid cloud that enveloped them, brought him relief and suffocated her.

 

“N-Nothing, just—” she wheezed and backed away.

 

She’d been stupid. Stupid to follow him here.

 

 

Exclusive Deal/Giveaway:

Today only (2/22/17), get a FREE Kindle copy at Amazon:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MTPVI0U

 

 

Buy Links:

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32886409-judge-by-the-cover

 

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MTPVI0U?ref_=pe_2427780_160035660

 

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/judge-by-the-cover-melissa-abigail/1125440437?ean=9780995300101

 

Chapters-Indigo: https://www.chapters.indigo.ca/en-ca/books/judge-by-the-cover-high/9780995300101-item.html?ikwid=judge+by+the+cover&ikwsec=Books&ikwidx=0

 

 

Author Biography:

Melissa Abigail was born in the southern U.S.A. to South American parents, lived in the borough of Brooklyn, N.Y., and was raised in the humble suburbs of southern Ontario. A citizen of the world, she’s managed to fit in nowhere in particular but everywhere at the same time. She is a lifelong writer, creator and artist that embraces thought-provoking ideas and diversity in film, fiction and life.

 

Social Media Links:

Website: www.hafusanshalo.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/abielleamiel/

Twitter: @abielleamiel

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15820401.Melissa_Abigail

Chameleon by @zoekalowriter Book Blitz #YALit #Gothic #Giveaway @XpressoTours


Chameleon
Zoe Kalo
Publication date: February 2nd 2017
Genres: Gothic, Young Adult

An isolated convent, a supernatural presence, a dark secret…

17-year-old Paloma only wanted to hold a séance to contact her dead father. She never thought she would be kicked out of school and end up in an isolated convent. Now, all she wants is to be left alone. But slowly, she develops a bond with a group of girls: kind-hearted Maria, insolent Silvy, pathological liar Adelita, and their charismatic leader Rubia.

When, yet again, Paloma holds a séance in the hope of contacting her father, she awakens an entity that has been dormant for years. And then, the body count begins. Someone doesn’t want the secret out… Are the ghost and Paloma’s suspicions real—or only part of her growing paranoia and delusions?

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Request a review copy here!

EXCERPT:

Madre Estela remained standing by the door. “Get a bucket and fill it with water.”

Her hypercritical eyes sliced through my self-worth as I grabbed one of the metal buckets, lifted it into the sink, and turned on the faucet. I watched, transfixed, as the water gushed like a torrent spurting from an open artery. The cold spray raised goosebumps on my arms.

Madre Estela snapped her fingers. “Move.”

As I hauled the bucket to the door, some of the water slushed over the edge and splattered to the floor.

“Add the detergent,” she said stiffly, irritated by my clumsiness.

I chose a green bottle, twisted the cap, and poured. The acrid pine smell stung my nostrils.

“Get a sponge and a brush from there. Get going. We don’t have all evening—unless you want to work in the dark.”

I gritted my teeth, but pretended not to be bothered. I suspected that the one thing that this nun couldn’t stand was indifference.

Outside, it was almost dusk. In spite of the intense screeching of the coquíes, the drum of the waterfall hit my ears. It was louder now than the last time I’d been here. How was that possible?

I felt a drop of rain. Great.

Madre Estela put one hand out, palm up. “My, my. What’s this?” She looked chagrined, and I suddenly realized why. If it rained, I would have to go inside, ruining her plans. “What are you standing there for? Start scrubbing.”

I was tempted to throw the bucket of greenish water at her face. Instead, I prayed for rain as I walked across the rose garden. Once at the gate, I glanced back at her.

“You’ll work until I come for you, understood?” she said, hands on hips in her usual stance. She pointed to one of the second-floor windows. “I’ll be watching from there.”

And that was it. She was gone.

For a moment I just stood there. If only my friends could see me now. They would never believe it.

I opened the gate and walked into the graveyard. The statue of Gabriel greeted me, its face fiercer in the dusk. The temperature must have been in the low seventies. I was glad I had my cardigan.

Suddenly, the garden lamp post lit up. I turned, startled. I wasn’t sure if it had automatically switched on or if someone, maybe Madre Estela, had done it from indoors. I glanced up at the second-floor window, expecting to find her face. I had the chilling sensation of being watched. There was nothing. The windows glowed with yellow light, a multitude of feral eyes keeping guard.

However, behind one of the ground-floor windows on the right, a figure appeared. Tall, blurred. Madre Superiora? I was sure that was her office. Yet, something about the shape of the head and the shoulders made me think of…Rubia. What was she doing in Madre Superiora’s office?

Just as abruptly as it’d appeared, the figure vanished from view.

The incident left me strangely unsettled.

Focus.

I splashed some of the water on one of the tombstones and got to work. The sound of hard bristles against stone blocked the hum of the waterfall. Almost.

Go away, damn it.

As I crouched to work on a second tombstone, doing my best not to get wet in the process, something shifted at the edge of my vision. I jumped to my feet, my heart thudding. Gabriel. Its wings had rippled with movement.

Dear God…what’s happening to me?

I rubbed my forehead and grimaced, my fingers shaking.

I felt another drop of rain. If it was going to rain, why didn’t it? The sky was playing with me, too. Mocking me.

I cursed the clouds and started scrubbing again.

I had another sensation of being watched and this time, yes, it was Madre Estela behind the window. I pretended I hadn’t seen her and tried to keep focused on the task at hand. The water had turned blackish with grime.

I don’t know how long I scrubbed. I lost track of time. But it was dark. My back and shoulders were sore and my hands stung from the harsh detergent.

Madre Estela was long gone from the window.

Half panting, I sat down on the edge of the tombstone and tossed the brush aside in disgust. I looked at the statue again, but it was motionless. I turned to the windows again, my eyes slowly moving from one to the other.

From one to the other.

Expecting to see the face. Wanting to see it.

Nothing.

Yet, that weird sensation of being watched, again.

My gaze shifted to the woods, to the exact place where the cemetery ended and the forest started. There was a path there. Narrow, obscured by the trees. For a long moment I sat, mesmerized. Then I stood up and began to approach it. The breeze picked up as I got closer, carrying with it the cool, slightly pungent smell of the waterfall.

I stopped at the very edge, the darkness enveloping me, the dampness seeping through my clothes.

The wind sighed, rustling the leaves and fluttering my hair.

Icy breath, on the back of my neck.

I’m in here… a voice whispered from the shadows.

I spun around in terror.

Then I hit something hard.

 

Author Bio:

A certified bookworm and ailurophile, Zoe Kalo has always been obsessed with books and reading. Reading led to writing—compulsively. No surprise that at 16, she wrote her first novel, which her classmates read and passed around secretly. The pleasure of writing and sharing her fantasy worlds has stayed with her, so now she wants to pass her stories to you with no secrecy—but with lots of mystery. She lives amongst cats and books in Belgium, and is the author of the Cult of the Cat young adult fantasy series and the Retribution novella series for adults.

 

Sign up for her newsletter at http://www.ZoeKalo.com and get her exclusive short story “Irkalla.”

 

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

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The Author Behind – and Within – The Ceruleans: @BookishCharlie #NA #Giveaway #books


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‘Every author in some way portrays himself in his works, even if it be against his will.’ I knew this quotation from Johann Wolfgang von Goethe from my university days, but until I wrote The Ceruleans, I had no idea how accurate it is.

When I set out to write The Ceruleans series, I knew there would be something of myself in it, because a central concept in the first book, Death Wish, of grief in the aftermath of losing a loved one, was inspired by my own experiences. ‘Write what you know’ is an old adage and a good one; I know grief, so I decided to write about grief.

I did not, however, intend to write five books that so closely aligned to my own emotional journey. As I write in the author’s note at the end of Book 5: ‘The story isn’t my own, but the feelings are, and it has been dark and deep and beautiful to share these truths with you.

Neither did I intend to write a heroine with such a similar disposition to me. Scarlett differs from me in some pretty significant ways, but her sensitivity and her desire for a quiet life come directly from me. Would I like to live in cottage on a cliff in a sleepy Devonshire cove? Absolutely!

Remember Goethe’s words ‘even if it be against his will’? As a writer, when you discover you are exposing parts of yourself through fiction, you feel vulnerable; and that drives a desire to hack away at the manuscript, stripping yourself out. I could have rewritten The Ceruleans with a more thick-skinned heroine and less emotional resonance. I didn’t, though, because where’s the meaning in that?

As Franz Kafka put it, ‘Writing is utter solitude, the descent into the cold abyss of oneself.’ Publishing your writing, however, offers a way out of that solitude – if you’ve been honest and brave enough to infuse the writing with elements of yourself, so that you are not merely the author behind the words, but the author within the words.

 

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Death Wish (The Ceruleans I) by Charlotte Wilson

IN SEARCH OF THE MEANING OF DEATH, SHE’LL FIND THE MEANING OF LIFE.

Seventeen-year-old Scarlett Blake is haunted by death. Her sister has made the ultimate dramatic exit: run away from school, join a surfing fraternity, drown in a tragic ‘accident’.

Following in her sister’s footsteps, Scarlett comes to an isolated English cove to uncover the truth. And, as it turns out, to fall in love with the place and its people, especially a certain blue-eyed surfer with a serious case of the heroics.

But as Scarlett’s quest for the truth unravels, so too does her grip on reality as she’s always known it. Because there’s something strange going on in this little cove. A dead magpie circles the skies. A dead deer watches from the undergrowth. Hands glow with light. Power.

What transpires is a summer of discovery: of what it means to conquer fear, to fall in love, to choose life, to choose death.

To believe the impossible.

 

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Forget Me Not (The Ceruleans II) by Charlotte Wilson

IN THE FACE OF DEATH, SHE MUST PROTECT THOSE SHE LOVES.

Death is stalking Scarlett Blake. As if the encroaching darkness in her head wasn’t enough, she’s become disturbingly accident prone. Falling off a cliff isn’t ideal when all you want is as much time as possible to live the life you love.

But the clock is ticking, louder with every heartbeat, and now Scarlett must decide how best to protect the people she loves.

Will she trust in Jude and the life-after-death he promises? Will she stand against the Fallen, who have her sister captive? Will she carry the burden of her death alone – every headache, every hallucination, every harrowing emotion?

And when the clock falls silent, will Scarlett fight for life? Or will she surrender to the one who’s determined to kill her?

 

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Wild Blue Yonder (The Ceruleans III) by Charlotte Wilson

IN A WARPED HEAVEN, SHE MUST CHOOSE HER FATE: OBEDIENCE OR REBELLION

When Scarlett Blake chose to Become a Cerulean, she expected to grieve for all she left behind. But at least Cerulea, her heaven, would be… well, heavenly. Right?

Wrong. The world in which Scarlett awakens is picturesque, sure, and serene. But there can be no paradise within the unforgiving walls of a prison, be they of cold, hard stone or beautifully blue water.

Now Scarlett faces her hardest decision yet: be a good, dutiful Cerulean, or be true to herself and fight for freedom.

And if she can find a way to escape, what then? Can she save her sister from the murderous Fallen? Can she evade her destiny with the Ceruleans? Can she ever reclaim her life-before-death… or must she let go of all she loves?

 

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Devil and the Deep (The Ceruleans IV) by Charlotte Wilson

STORM CLOUDS ARE GATHERING, AND THEY WILL RAIN BLOOD.

Scarlett is living her happy-ever-after, back in the real world. Only the ‘happy’ part is proving problematic.

For starters, there’s the isolation. Being a Cerulean among humans is fraught with risk, so time with those she loves can only be fleeting.

Then there’s her power over life and death. Less awesome talent, as it turns out, and more overwhelming responsibility – and it comes with rules that are increasingly difficult to obey.

But what’s really pushing Scarlett to the precipice is something much bigger than her life in the cove. A force to be reckoned with: blood.

When long-buried truths are exposed, will Scarlett keep her head above water – or will she drown in the blood-dimmed tide that is unleashed?

 

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Darkly, Deeply, Beautifully (The Ceruleans V) by Charlotte Wilson

DARKNESS HAS FALLEN, AND SHE ALONE WILL SEE THE LIGHT.

With her mother’s life hanging in the balance, Scarlett is devastated – and done with being in the dark. She wants answers, all of them.

But when was her pursuit of the truth ever straightforward?

Pulling a single thread impels a great unravelling. And each revelation will force Scarlett to rethink what she thought she knew about the Ceruleans, the Fallen, her family – herself.

All that came before was a mere prelude to this, the final journey – to where it all began and it all must end. But in the final reckoning, none will survive unscathed. And some will not survive at all.

In this explosive conclusion to The Ceruleans series, all must be defined by their actions: sinner, saint… or something more beautiful entirely?

 

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Buy Links:

https://www.amazon.com/Charlotte-Wilson/e/B00TDH4XLS/

https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/death-wish-30

https://itunes.apple.com/us/author/charlotte-wilson/id200555

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/death-wish-charlotte-wilson/1125314541

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Charlotte Wilson Biography:

Once upon a time a little girl told her grandmother that when she grew up she wanted to be a writer. Or a lollipop lady. Or a fairy princess. ‘Write, Charlotte,’ her grandmother advised. So that’s what she did.

Thirty-odd years later, Charlotte is a professional writer. For authors and publishers, she writes and edits books as The Book Specialist. For herself, she writes soulful, coming-of-age romance for young adults.

Charlotte grew up in the Royal County, a hop, skip and a (very long) jump from Windsor Castle, but these days she makes her home in a village of Greater Manchester with her husband and two children. When she’s not reading or writing, you’ll find her walking someplace green, baking up a storm, or embarking on a DIY project. She recently achieved a lifetime ambition of creating a library in her home to house her ever-increasing collection of books. She pretends not to notice that the shelves are rather wonky.

 

You can find Charlotte online at:

www.thebookspecialist.com

https://twitter.com/bookishcharlie

https://www.facebook.com/bookishcharlie

https://www.instagram.com/bookishcharlie/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15932269.Charlotte_Wilson

 

Giveaway:

Did someone say free books? Yes, five of them.

Charlotte’s  giving away a full set of the Ceruleans novels in print: that’s all the new-edition paperbacks delivered to your door (wherever that is in the world).

Entry is via Rafflecopter below, and is open to all. Good luck!

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7 #YAFantasy #Books MRS N Recommends on Friday Book Round-Up #FridayReads #YA


Friday Book Round Up

 

Welcome to this week’s edition of Friday Book Round-Up. I’m a big fan of fantasy, especially young adult fantasy. This genre allows me to escape the realities of my life for awhile and live amongst dragons, fairies, fantastical beasts, magical beings, etc. I went over to Amazon and found some of my favorite fantasy authors have upcoming/new releases. Here are seven books I can’t wait to read:

 

 

King’s Cage (Red Queen) by Victoria Aveyard

In this breathless third installment to Victoria Aveyard’s bestselling Red Queen series, allegiances are tested on every side. And when the Lightning Girl’s spark is gone, who will light the way for the rebellion?

 

Mare Barrow is a prisoner, powerless without her lightning, tormented by her lethal mistakes. She lives at the mercy of a boy she once loved, a boy made of lies and betrayal. Now a king, Maven Calore continues weaving his dead mother’s web in an attempt to maintain control over his country—and his prisoner.

 

As Mare bears the weight of Silent Stone in the palace, her once-ragtag band of newbloods and Reds continue organizing, training, and expanding. They prepare for war, no longer able to linger in the shadows. And Cal, the exiled prince with his own claim on Mare’s heart, will stop at nothing to bring her back.

 

When blood turns on blood, and ability on ability, there may be no one left to put out the fire—leaving Norta as Mare knows it to burn all the way down.

 

 

A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses) by Sarah J. Maas

Looming war threatens all Feyre holds dear in the third volume of the #1 New York Times bestselling A Court of Thorns and Roses series.

 

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit-and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well.

 

As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords-and hunt for allies in unexpected places.

 

In this thrilling third book in the #1 New York Times bestselling series from Sarah J. Maas, the earth will be painted red as mighty armies grapple for power over the one thing that could destroy them all.

 

 

Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

A new epic fantasy by National Book Award finalist and New York Times bestselling author Laini Taylor of the Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy.

 

The dream chooses the dreamer, not the other way around–and Lazlo Strange, war orphan and junior librarian, has always feared that his dream chose poorly. Since he was five years old he’s been obsessed with the mythic lost city of Weep, but it would take someone bolder than he to cross half the world in search of it. Then a stunning opportunity presents itself, in the person of a hero called the Godslayer and a band of legendary warriors, and he has to seize his chance to lose his dream forever.

What happened in Weep two hundred years ago to cut it off from the rest of the world? What exactly did the Godslayer slay that went by the name of god? And what is the mysterious problem he now seeks help in solving?

 

The answers await in Weep, but so do more mysteries–including the blue-skinned goddess who appears in Lazlo’s dreams. How did he dream her before he knew she existed? and if all the gods are dead, why does she seem so real?

 

In this sweeping and breathtaking new novel by National Book Award finalist Laini Taylor, author of the New York Times bestselling Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy, the shadow of the past is as real as the ghosts who haunt the citadel of murdered gods. Fall into a mythical world of dread and wonder, moths and nightmares, love and carnage.

 

The Ship Beyond Time by Heidi Heilig

The breathtaking sequel to the acclaimed The Girl from Everywhere.

 

Nix has spent her whole life journeying to places both real and imagined aboard her time-traveling father’s ship. And now it’s finally time for her to take the helm. Her future lies bright before her—until she learns that she is destined to lose the one she loves.

 

Desperate to change her fate, Nix sails her crew to a mythical utopia to meet another Navigator who promises to teach her how to manipulate time. But everything in this utopia is constantly changing, and nothing is what it seems. Not even her relationship with Kash: best friend, thief, charmer extraordinaire.

 

Heidi Heilig weaves fantasy, history, and romance together to tackle questions of free will, fate, and what it means to love another person. At the center of this adventure are extraordinary, complicated, and multicultural characters who leap off the page, and an intricate, recognizable world that has no bounds. This sequel—and conclusion—to The Girl from Everywhere includes five black-and-white maps of historical and mythical locations. Fans of Rachel Hartman, Rae Carson, and Outlander will be swept away.

 

 

Frogkisser! by Garth Nix

Poor Princess Anya. Forced to live with her evil stepmother’s new husband, her evil stepstepfather. Plagued with an unfortunate ability to break curses with a magic-assisted kiss. And forced to go on the run when her stepstepfather decides to make the kingdom entirely his own.

 

Aided by a loyal talking dog, a boy thief trapped in the body of a newt, and some extraordinarily mischievous wizards, Anya sets off on a Quest that, if she plays it right, will ultimately free her land-and teach her a thing or two about the use of power, the effectiveness of a well-placed pucker, and the finding of friends in places both high and low.

 

With Frogkisser!, acclaimed bestselling author Garth Nix has conjured a fantastical tale for all ages, full of laughs and danger, surprises and delights, and an immense population of frogs. It’s 50% fairy tale, 50% fantasy, and 100% pure enjoyment from start to finish.

 

 

Hunted by Meagan Spooner

New York Times bestselling author Meagan Spooner spins a thoroughly thrilling Beauty and the Beast story for the modern age, expertly woven with spellbinding romance, intrigue, and suspense that readers won’t soon be able to forget.

 

Beauty knows the Beast’s forest in her bones—and in her blood. After all, her father is the only hunter who’s ever come close to discovering its secrets. So when her father loses his fortune and moves Yeva and her sisters out of their comfortable home among the aristocracy and back to the outskirts of town, Yeva is secretly relieved. Out in the wilderness, there’s no pressure to make idle chatter with vapid baronessas…or to submit to marrying a wealthy gentleman. But Yeva’s father’s misfortune may have cost him his mind, and when he goes missing in the woods, Yeva sets her sights on one prey: the creature he’d been obsessively tracking just before his disappearance. The Beast.

 

Deaf to her sisters’ protests, Yeva hunts this strange creature back into his own territory—a cursed valley, a ruined castle, and a world of magical creatures that Yeva’s only heard about in fairy tales. A world that can bring her ruin, or salvation. Who will survive: the Beauty, or the Beast?

 

And a debut fantasy author I can’t wait to try…

 

Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller

If you want something done right….

 

When the ruthless Pirate King learns of a legendary treasure map hidden on an enemy ship, his daughter, Alosa, knows that there’s only one pirate for the job—herself. Leaving behind her beloved ship and crew, Alosa deliberately facilitates her own kidnapping to ensure her passage on the enemy ship. After all, who’s going to suspect a seventeen-year-old girl locked in a cell?

 

Then she meets the (surprisingly perceptive and unfairly attractive) first mate, Riden, who is charged with finding out all her secrets. Now it’s down to a battle of wits and will… Can Alosa find the map and escape before Riden figures out her plan?

 

Debut author Tricia Levenseller blends action, adventure, romance, and a little bit of magic into a thrilling YA pirate tale.

 

 

Have a young adult fantasy book/series to recommend? Share in the comments below. Happy Reading!

 

MRS N, Book Addict

Destined to Die: The Kingmaker by @GemmaPerfect #books #YA #fantasy


The Kingmaker
Gemma Perfect
(The Kingmaker Trilogy, #1)
Publication date: January 1st 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

 

“I am sixteen years old and I will die on the morning of my seventeenth birthday. As tradition dictates, I will be sacrificed and my life’s blood will determine which one of my two brothers will be King. My blood will kill one and crown one. My name is Everleigh and I am the Kingmaker.”

 

The legend of the Kingmaker goes back millions of years. Their magic chooses the rightful King of the Realm and they all die on their seventeenth birthday.

 

Except this one.

 

Everleigh is special.

 

She is the Kingmaker who will live, the Kingmaker who will rule, the Kingmaker who will be Queen.

 

But not everyone agrees with an age old prophecy that says that a girl will rule the Realm and soon Everleigh is locked in a deadly battle for the throne.

 

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

EXCERPT:

Halfreda

I have been sleeping so much more than normal. I believe the dreams are sending me messages. I have such a strong feeling about this one – stronger than I have ever had before; I think she might be the one.

I know what people think when they look at me, half of them revere me and half of them fear me.

I admit I exaggerate my persona but never ever my powers. My powers are real. I know things and I see things. I see things that haven’t happened yet but will happen. I know a person’s heart – I can see greatness and badness, trust or ill will. I know if someone is cursed before they tell me. I know if a woman is with child before she does. I know the private thoughts of people. Some people. Not everyone – some people are good at hiding their true self, blocking off the signals I pick up, but for the most part I can.

My persona is something else. I do have a little fun with the chanting – not all of which is strictly necessary. I enjoy staring at someone and then letting my eyes roll back in my head as if I have been overcome with some secret thing to do with them – that trick gets everyone in a fluster.

But I’m a good woman and a useful one. I do help the King. I use my powers to advise him. I use my knowledge to guide him and I have never shown him wrong. The Realm is peaceful and prosperous and I know that I have helped with that.

But my real purpose, the reason my teacher placed me here at the castle, has eluded me thus far. Through no fault of my own, I must add.

So, the blessing is over and here I am making up a future fire to see what I can see.

I’ve gathered the wood and started the fire, the flames licking upwards and warming my room. I’ve put all the necessary ingredients in to my bowl over the fire. The liquid is swirling. I’m trying to see if my hunch is correct. If I’m right about Everleigh.

Ah, I’m fed up of this puzzle. The fire will not show me anything, but does that mean I am wrong or that the future is too uncertain?

Where is my knowledge now?

Every time a Kingmaker comes to this final countdown in their life I intervene. Everleigh is the seventh Kingmaker I have known. That may give you an idea of my age I know, and yes, I am older than anyone I have ever met.

The teacher told me I will live until my life’s purpose is completed and my life’s purpose is to find the Kingmaker who is not the Kingmaker.

Does that even make sense?

When I met my teacher, I was only a teenager. I was rebelling against my power and trying to drown out my knowledge and gift with drink. Alcohol dulled the power and the voices inside me.

My teacher helped me, guided me and allowed me to live with my power, enjoying the help it gave me and embracing it fully. He also told me that I had been chosen for a special and important purpose.

He asked me if I had heard of the Kingmaker. Of course, I had – everyone had. The Kingmaker was a sacred tradition used to choose the new King of the Realm.

The teacher had been privy to a prophecy found years ago, which told of the one Kingmaker who would not die, she instead would rule as the Queen and the greatest ruler that the Realm had ever known.

I was to learn my craft and then go to the castle and work as a wise woman to assist the King. But every time the Kingmaker feast came around, I was to secretly meet the Kingmaker and test if she was the future Queen.

I have a feeling with this one that I’ve never had before. I’m more excited than I’ve been previously to test her. I’m nervous too. The one thing the teacher never told me was what happened next. If I found the Kingmaker who should be Queen, how did I convince anyone else?

My fire has let me down. I leave it to die and decide to finish for the night. After all, if she does as I’ve asked, I will meet Everleigh at the river at sunrise, which isn’t that far away.

I lay in my bed, watching the embers of the fire flicker away, and as I do I see a crown forming in the smoke. Is it a trick of my imagination or is it a sign?

I drift off to sleep pondering.

 

Author Bio:

 

Gemma Perfect loves to write. She’s been doing it since she was nine. After a few false starts – self publishing children’s books, and being traditionally published with her romance novella, she has finally found her feet writing young adult historical fantasy books. She is currently writing The Cursed Princess, set five years after The Kingmaker Trilogy finishes, following the adventures of Everleigh’s sister, Addyson.

 

Gemma lives in Wales with her husband Craig and their three boys, Sam, Corey and Oliver. She is happiest when writing, day dreaming and eating smelly blue cheese.

 

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

GIVEAWAY!

Enter to win a $25 Amazon gift card, an eBook copy of the trilogy, and a link for 10 e-copies of book one for the winner’s friends

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Guardian of the Way by @DianeMoatAuthor Grabs You From the First Page #bookreview #fantasy #YA


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Title: Guardian of the Way

Author: Diane Moat

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

 

Book Blurb:

It’s been two centuries since someone murdered the last Guardian of the Way, closing off this world from the many realms of magic and fae.

 

Cassiopeia “Cass” Wilson is an eighteen-year-old living on her own for the first time. The only magic she’s interested in is the kind that will help her pay the bills on time. Little does she know that a trip to the hospital after a fainting spell will change her life forever.

 

Cass soon learns she may be fae, and everything points to her being the next Guardian of the Way. There’s just one problem: whoever—or whatever—killed the last Guardian wants Cass dead too.

 

Cass quickly runs into problems, and an attack by djinn is just the first. But Cass joins forces with a wrath daemon, were-creatures, and fae on a quest to reach the Lighthouse—the site of the Way.

 

Cass soon learns about wizards desperate to keep the Way closed to serve their dark purposes, and she comes to a crossroads: will she take the test to become the new Guardian and leave her normal life behind? Or will the Way remain closed to all who need it?

 

My Review:

Imagine everything you know about the world you live in is an illusion. Now imagine all those stories about wizards, werewolves, fae, dijin and otherworldly creatures are true and their very survival lies in your hands. Welcome to Guardian of the Way.

 

Eighteen-year-old Cass, grew up an orphan and never quite fit in, is finally living on her own. She has her best friends and her own apartment. Life’s pretty good, that is until a night out with her girlfriends lands her in the hospital. The doctor can’t explain her fainting spells or the constant pain in her arm. It’s only when he introduces her to an alternative medicine “doctor” that Cass’ life is spun out of control.

 

“We have to get you to the Lighthouse,” a few strangers tell her. They tell her a little bit at a time as they dodge one attack after another. A group of a wrath demon, fae, werewolves and more protect her from those hell-bent on killing her before she comes into her real identity: Guardian of the Way. Along the way, she will be tested and at the end, she will need to make a choice. Will she sacrifice her future to save millions or is it all too much for her?

 

I’m a huge fan of fantasy and I LOVED this book! Filled with interesting characters and conflict galore, Guardian of the Way is a fantasy gem in the same vein as Sarah J. Maas and Philip Pullman.

 

Moat creates a realistic heroine in Cass and I could totally relate to her. There are times when it’s all too much for her and yet, after contemplation, she finds the strength to continue. Cass is a role model for young women everywhere and she’s relatable.

 

My favorite scenes are between Cass and the werewolves. They have a bond that’s unbreakable and it’s heart-wrenching at moments.

 

If you’re looking for a good book to escape to, this is it! Don’t be deterred by the young adult rating… this well-written gem is perfect for readers of both teen and adult. It has something for everyone (action, otherworldly creatures, magical realism, romance, destiny, coming of age). A must read and I highly recommend!

 

Favorite Character: It’s a toss-up between Cass, Aeshma and Malon. Each of these characters bring a depth to the story and I grew attached to them the more I read. Both Aeshma and Malon help Cass come into her own. While Aeshma is a demon and sparks fly between him and Cass, Malon is like her very own Yoda (only more helpful and not so cryptic).

 

Favorite Quote: “Plus, something in her soul wanted all of this to be true. She had been lost her whole life, never having answers to whom she was or why she was without a family.” – Cass

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Guardian-Way-Diane-Moat-ebook/dp/B01MFD7KNC

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32795260-guardian-of-the-way?from_search=true

 

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Author Biography:

When not creating fantastical worlds of young adult fiction, Diane Moat spends her time in Tennessee as an animal rescuer and nurse. Her various rescue dogs often assist her in the creative process.

 

Social Media Links:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/DianeMoatAuthor/

Website http://www.dianemoatauthor.com/

Twitter @DianeMoatAuthor

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

Announcing the N. N. Light Book Awards Finalists #books #bookreview #amreading


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Announcing the 1st Annual N. N. Light Book Awards, courtesy of N. N. Light Author Promotions.

 

We, Mr. N and Mrs. N, have read some incredible books this year and we thought it would be fun to have our own book awards. We gathered together the book reviews of every book we’ve read this year (over 200) and put together a ballot. Then Mr. N and Mrs. N sat down and discussed each entrant. After much consideration, we have narrowed it down to five finalists in the following categories:

 

Fiction

Childrens/Young Adult

Mystery/Suspense

Romance

Nonfiction

 

So, without further ado… drum roll please… here are the finalists…

 

Fiction:

Go Fast by Rod Humphris

Exordium of Tears by Andrew Weston

Pete’s Mighty Purty Privies by Aubrey Wynne

Raven’s Peak by Lincoln Cole

Dead Ground by Rod Humphris

 

Childrens/Young Adult:

Barking Madness by Ryan Hill

Lions in the Garden by Chelsea Luna

Withering Rose by Kaitlyn Davis

You, the Magician by Josh and Jodi Carothers

 

Mystery/Suspense:

Bring Your Own Baker by D. E. Haggerty

A Taste of Tragedy by Kim McMahill

Cries in the Wind by Judy Bruce

Anonymous by Christine Benedict

From a Poison Pen by B. P. Smythe

 

Romance:

The Guardian’s Witch by Ruth A. Casie

The Du Lac Chronicles by Mary Anne Yarde

Blame it on the Moon by Livia Quinn

The Guardian by Jacquie Biggar

Waltzing with the Earl by Alanna Lucas

 

Nonfiction:

The Power of Faith: When Tragedy Strikes by Chris and Terry Norton

Everything and a Happy Ending by Tia Shurina

A Long Walk with Sally by David Clark Jr.

Unearthing Venus: My Search for the Woman Within by Cate Montana

Notes from a Very Small Island by Anthony Stancomb

 

The winner in each category will receive a promotional package worth $50, courtesy of N. N. Light Author Promotions.

 

Congratulations to all of the finalists and the winners will be announced via email and on the POTL blog on Friday, December 23rd.

Guardian of the Way by @DianeMoatAuthor #YoungAdult #Fantasy #Books


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Title: Guardian of the Way

Author: Diane Moat

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance

 

Tagline:

When eighteen-year-old Cass discovers that she’s part fae, a battle begins among supernatural  creatures to appoint her the new Guardian who’ll open up the Way between the worlds.

 

Book Blurb:

It’s been two centuries since someone murdered the last Guardian of the Way, closing off this world from the many realms of magic and fae.

 

Cassiopeia “Cass” Wilson is an eighteen-year-old living on her own for the first time. The only magic she’s interested in is the kind that will help her pay the bills on time. Little does she know that a trip to the hospital after a fainting spell will change her life forever.

 

Cass soon learns she may be fae, and everything points to her being the next Guardian of the Way. There’s just one problem: whoever—or whatever—killed the last Guardian wants Cass dead too.

 

Cass quickly runs into problems, and an attack by djinn is just the first. But Cass joins forces with a wrath daemon, were-creatures, and fae on a quest to reach the Lighthouse—the site of the Way.

 

Cass soon learns about wizards desperate to keep the Way closed to serve their dark purposes, and she comes to a crossroads: will she take the test to become the new Guardian and leave her normal life behind? Or will the Way remain closed to all who need it?

 

Hear what readers are saying about Guardian of the Way:

“Cass Wilson takes us right along with her in this journey, revealing a world she never knew existed, with a diverse new tribe of companions, protectors, and friends. A must read for anyone who wonders what else is out there beyond what we can see.” by C.S.

 

“A strong story, full of surprises. Getting there is half the fun, but is she meant for this challenging job between many worlds? Quite worth a read.” by M. Hayden

 

Excerpt:

A massive lighthouse sits off the coast of Maine near the town of Cutler. The building has stood empty for over two-hundred years. Those who can make out the edifice view a tower of stone and paned glass unlike any other lighthouse they have ever seen. The specific dimensions are hard to determine as this structure, unlike most lighthouses, is not a single tower. Instead, it has a broader base than usual, with what appear to be turrets at the top. The construction may even consist of two buildings connected at the middle. But not many people question this odd lighthouse, or even wonder why it remains vacant. 

 

This is because most Humans can’t actually see the Lighthouse. A few who have a drop of Fey, Were or “Other” blood may perceive an ordinary lighthouse. And some instinct guides these souls to avoid the building, though they wouldn’t be able to voice why if they were asked. True Fey, Were, Vampires, and other supernatural beings can certainly identify the building known to them as the Lighthouse, but none of them dare try to enter. Those genuine descendants know the Way is blocked, and has been for the two-hundred years the Lighthouse has stood dark. 

 

The place has sat empty since the most recent Lighthouse Guardian died one horrible night at the pinnacle. The Guardian had only been Guardian for four-hundred years and was killed well before his time. Inside the Lighthouse lies the only permanent causeway (the “Way”) between the worlds of magic and the world of the mundane. Fey, Were, Vampires and other non-Humans, despite the barrier to journeying across from inside the Lighthouse, could still travel between these two worlds using costly magic spells—but such a trip is difficult and dangerous. The entrance to the Way closed at the time of the Guardian’s death, and neither magic nor mundane had been able to open it since.

 

On one late evening in particular, a large man sat under a tree just outside of Cutler, eating the stew his mate had made earlier and placed in a storage dish. The season was early fall, but already the nights had a bite to them. The man was on his third shift of watch duty in a row. He had pulled this job ten months previously and was glad the rotations were only a year long. He would be back home in Louisiana before the truly bitter winter was well underway.

 

The man was suddenly blinded by a light coming from the very top of the Lighthouse. The man’s reflexes were frighteningly quick, but even so he dropped his stew. Flabbergasted, he stared directly at the light for a full twenty seconds, until he no longer cared about the meal. He turned away from the brightness, and shedding his clothes, he found his legs shortening and his arms lengthening. In less than a minute, a large dark-grey Wolf shook himself once, then again. Glancing back for a final look at the Lighthouse, the Wolf began running toward the town. 

 

He wouldn’t stop running until he was at his pack leader’s house. From there, word would spread like a virus. Everything was different now. For somewhere in this ordinary domain, two minutes before, a brand-new Guardian had been born. 

 

Buy Links:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Guardian-Way-Diane-Moat-ebook/dp/B01MFD7KNC

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32795260-guardian-of-the-way?from_search=true

 

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Author Biography:

When not creating fantastical worlds of young adult fiction, Diane Moat spends her time in Tennessee as an animal rescuer and nurse. Her various rescue dogs often assist her in the creative process.

 

Social Media Links:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/DianeMoatAuthor/

Website http://www.dianemoatauthor.com/

Twitter @DianeMoatAuthor

“Maia must trust someone to survive” Shadow Fall by @AudreyGreyBooks #books #scifi #YA


Shadow Fall
Audrey Grey
(Shadow Fall, #1)
Published by: Blaze Publishing
Publication date: November 22nd 2016
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult

The asteroid hurtling toward the earth will kill billions.

The Emperor and his Gold Court will be safe in their space station, watching from the stars. The Silvers will be protected underground. But the Bronzes must fight it out at the Shadow Trials for the few remaining spots left on the space station.

When an enigmatic benefactor hands Maia Graystone a spot in the Trials, she won’t just get a chance at salvation for her and her baby brother, Max: She gets to confront the mother who abandoned her in prison, the mad Emperor who murdered her father, and the Gold prince who once loved her. But it’s the dark bastard prince she’s partnered with that will make her question everything, including her own heart. With the asteroid racing closer every day, Maia must trust someone to survive.

The question is who?

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / iBooks

You can get your copy now for the special release price of 99 cents, and be sure to meet us at the Facebook Party happening right now!

EXCERPT:

My legs wobble as I step into the now lukewarm water. I sink to the bottom. Tiny bubbles escape my nose as I watch all the ugly remnants from the last seven years leave my body.

Lungs burning, I rise and come face-to-face with Pit Boy.

I glare at him. “You really have to work on the knocking thing.”

Despite the fact that I’m indecent, his attention never falls from my face. I almost wish it would, just to give me a break from the intensity of his focus.

“I only get a few more hours to be the ‘one-eyed freak’ from the pit. Might as well take advantage.” He doesn’t dare crack a smile, so it’s hard to tell if he’s joking or serious.

“Don’t worry. In my heart, that’s exactly who you’ll always be.”

His words remind me that soon we’ll be reconstructed using forbidden nanotech. But it won’t just be our flesh they’ll reengineer. It will be our brains, too.

I don’t foresee my rewiring being too complicated, but Riser needs to upload almost twenty years of false memories. That will be tricky and time-consuming.

And time is the one thing we don’t have.

Riser flicks his gaze to the mirror. He lifts a hand, touches the patch of mottled flesh where his eye should be.

“How did it happen?” I ask.

“Careful, my lady.” His gaze settles on my face. “You’re beginning to sound like you care.”

I roll my eyes. “And I thought I was lacking in conversational skills.”

He focuses his attention on the graffiti sprayed across the mirror.

“It’s written language,” I blurt, even though all I want to do is end the conversation so Pit Boy can leave. His presence unnerves me more than the other Pit Leeches ever could. “It’s how we communicate.”

“I know what it is.” He examines his jagged thumbnail. “I just . . . can’t read it.”

“It’s just stuff about the Chosen. You know, insults.” The populace is finicky. As much as they love watching the Chosen with their petty intrigues and court life, they would be just as happy to see their heads on a pike.

“Chosen?”

Time to explain what you are, Everly, Nicolai’s voice grates inside my head. Riser’s eyes flutter just enough that I know he’s heard Nicolai’s voice too.

You do it, I think, watching Riser’s reaction. But his face remains emotionless; either he’s a good actor or only Nicolai can hear my response.

“The Royalist astronomers discovered the asteroid twenty-one years ago,” I begin. “It’s actually a slow moving planet called an earth-crosser, meaning its orbit and ours intersect every twenty-thousand years. Usually it’s too far away to affect us, but this time it will pass close enough to wreak havoc and make the earth uninhabitable for years.” I stir the water with my big toe. “Before I was born, the Emperor decided that creating a population of genetically superior humans would be a great idea, you know, just in case the Caskets don’t work or the asteroid does more damage than predicted.”

Riser’s hyper-focused gaze bores through me. “You’re one of them?”

“Yes.” I run my hand through the filthy water. “But my father’s a Bronze, so even though my mother comes from a Gold House, the Emperor only allowed them one Chosen instead of the customary twins. So it’s just me . . . not Max.”

“What makes being Chosen so special?”

“I don’t know . . .” I bite my lip, trying to remember everything my parents told me. “My genes are perfect, I guess.”

For some reason, talking about my body makes me remember that I am naked in a room with a boy. As if reading my mind, Riser slowly lets his gaze fall, his expression both curious and unapologetic as he takes me all in, his thoughts cryptic.

“What are you staring at?” I blurt, smashing my breasts beneath my hands. Not like there’s much there to cover. “Haven’t you seen a naked girl before?”

A smile twitches his lips. “Not one that’s genetically flawless.

“It doesn’t work that way! You can’t just look at us and tell. We look like everyone else—”

“No.” Riser shakes his head, a dark swath of hair covering his damaged eye. “You don’t. Whatever you are.”

“You must be happy . . . about our reconstruction, I mean,” I mumble, trying desperately to change the subject. “They’ll fix your eye . . . and . . . and all those horrible scars.”

I freeze as he slides off the counter, unable to look away as he hooks one finger beneath his shirt and lifts.

Scars ravage his anemic body in varying shades of red and silver and white. Some deep and pitted like the craters of a far-away planet, others smooth and neat. One particular nasty scar carves down his shoulder, tunneling across his chest and stomach. A fresh red wound nestles just below his throat.

He carefully touches the long ugly one. “I’m not ashamed for surviving.”

 

Author Bio:

Audrey Grey lives in the charming state of Oklahoma, with her husband, two little people, and four mischievous dogs. You can usually find her hiding out in her office from said little people and dogs, surrounded by books and sipping kombucha while dreaming up wondrous worlds for her characters to live in.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

 

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The Never Dawn by @R_E_Palmer Intrigued MRS N #bookreview #dystopian #YA


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Title: The Never Dawn

Author: R.E. Palmer

Genre: YA Dystopian

 

Book Blurb:

NEW DYSTOPIAN TRILOGY: BOOK ONE

 

All his young life, Noah has longed to see the sky he’s only heard about in stories. For over one hundred years, Noah’s people have toiled deep beneath the Earth preparing for The New Dawn – the historic day when they will emerge to reclaim the land stolen by a ruthless enemy.

 

But when Rebekah, the girl of his forbidden desire, discovers a secret their leader has been so desperate to keep, Noah suspects something is wrong. Together, they escape and begin the long climb to the surface. But nothing could prepare them for what awaits outside.

 

BOOK TWO, CLOUD CUCKOO is out now!

 

My Review:

Imagine being forced to live underground and not even being able to see the sky. Mother says it’s for your own protection. Is she telling the truth or is it all a lie?

 

The Never Dawn is the story of Noah, a young man living in a dystopian society. There are rules for everything and it’s all about the collective good. There is no personal identity, no individuality and if one person amongst your team messes up or slows down, the whole group suffers.

 

One day, Noah is given the diary of Moses, a hero of his society (called The Ark)  over one hundred years ago, and what he discovers while reading shocks him to the core. Noah shares what he reads with his forbidden crush, Rebekah, and together they embark on a deadly journey to reach the surface. Will they make it or will their enemies put a stop to it?

 

As someone who isn’t a huge dystopian fan, I really enjoyed it. The characters were original, relatable and I was deeply invested as a reader. Noah was fascinating to watch as he uncovered truths that crumbled his faith. His honest reactions to what he dealt with separated this series from other dystopians for me.

 

Palmer takes the reader into a society not far from our own and makes us re-evaluate our belief system. Do we blindly believe without searching out answers and if so, are we no better than those in this story?

 

Highly recommend for fans of Divergent, Hunger Games and those who love immersing themselves in dystopian universes. Can’t wait for the next book in the series.

 

Favorite Character: Noah. I attached myself to him almost from page one and it was an emotional roller coaster ride to the end. Seeing him confront reality with faith and deciding for himself what to do was a pleasure. A relatable character many will love.

 

Favorite Quote:

Read a preview: http://www.theneverdawn.com/preview.html and decide for yourself which quote is the best.

 

My Rating:  4 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Never-Dawn-R-E-Palmer-ebook/dp/B01JVI3GXE

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31366152-the-never-dawn

 

Author Biography:

From an early age, I loved to read and soon developed a love of sci-fi, fantasy and horror. After writing a number of short stories since my late teens, I finally completed my first novel in 2012; SKY. The sequel, Stargazers, was published in June 2013. I’m currently writing a dystopian trilogy – all three books will be out by December 2016.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.theneverdawn.com/

Blog http://www.theneverdawn.com/blog

Twitter https://twitter.com/R_E_Palmer?lang=en

Bookbub https://www.bookbub.com/authors/r-e-palmer

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N