Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Spotlight on Fang and Claw by Markie Madden

Over a hundred years in the future, it's a world where supernatural beings live and work among humans. Of course, the government has forced them to take the Undead Oath in order to gain citizenship; they must not prey on humans for food. They're given tasks in jobs suited for their species, but just as among other minorities, they must struggle to prove themselves.

As if dealing with racial prejudice isn't enough, there is also a criminal element, just as there is with any group of beings living in society. The Dallas Police Department has introduced an elite new squad made up of Undead officers and detectives. This unit is dedicated to solving crimes involving Immortals. Headed by veteran detective Lacey Anderson, can the Undead Unit overcome its obstacles, both internal and external, or will it be doomed to failure?

Detective Lacey Anderson of the Dallas Police Department is heading up a new elite squad dedicated to solving crimes involving Immortal species like herself. Lacey, a Vampire left for dead hundreds of years ago when her family was slaughtered by Werewolves, still has nightmares about the grievous ordeal.

Detective Colton Scarber is her unwilling partner and second-in-command. He's a Werewolf, a descendant of those who killed Lacey's coven mates, a fact unknown to Lacey, who already doesn't trust him from the start. When the symbiosis of the team is threatened, can they learn to trust one another as partners must, or will the Undead Unit be doomed to failure?

A mysterious suspect along with strange physical evidence leads them to solve a case spanning decades, and leaves Lacey with no other choice than to rely on Colton when her very life is in danger!

E-book available from:

Paperback available from:
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | Createspace | eBay

Markie is also holding a Goodreads Giveaway ending November 30, 2015

I reviewed Fang and Claw (The Undead Unit Book 1)
Loved it 15 Oct. 2015
I loved this book, it grabbed me on the first page and didn't let go 'til the end. Set in a future where supernatural beings have been accepted in the human world, a unit of Immortals investigate crimes committed by other Immortal and undead creatures. The authors portrayal of the world and the law enforcement of the future is well-written, descriptive, and entirely believable. The characters are complex and dynamic. Lacey and Colton, the two main characters, have a complicated and tense relationship, which adds to their opposing personalities. The story flows well and throws up a few surprises for the investigating pair, and for the reader.

P.A.WILLIAMS reviewed Fang and Claw (The Undead Unit Book 1)
This is my first book by this author and i enjoyed the story from the first page until the very last. A wonderful narration and a fantastic flow as each page was turned. I literally lost track of time as my eyes were focused on the book and the exciting adventure within the pages.

I will be reading more from this superb author


Barbara Chioffi reviewed Fang and Claw (The Undead Unit Book 1)
The writing is excellent and I look forward to more from this author 19 Oct. 2015
Colton and Lacey, one a wolf shifter, the other a vampire, begin their relationship as elite members of the newly created Undead Unit for a Texas police department. The search for a killer who leaves no trail leads to frustration and intrigue as the two become accustomed to each other. That journey is filled with bumps and potholes, and as you read, you experience the emotions that both are feeling. Colton and Lacey have intertwined pasts that threaten to destroy the working relationship. Will they be able to find the killer or will they abandon the partnership before their task is completed?

I found the details of this story mesmerizing. Experiencing the emotions of both characters draws you into their developing relationship, not to mention the fascinating details of police work...DNA evidence, filed reports, and hours of leg work that it takes to gather information.

Everything about this book will hold your attention. You are there with Colton and Lacey as they try to fit the pieces of the puzzle together. The writing is excellent and I look forward to more from this author. Well done, Ms. Madden. 5 stars

The room was silent except for the occasional crackle of wood in the fireplace. She knew Aegon always preferred to burn pine; he said it had the most pleasant scent of all the available woods. She took in a deep breath, and with her heightened senses, she could smell what he meant. The pitchy odor from the sap of the softwood tree filled the small room, and the warmth of the fire gave it a welcoming feel. Spending time in this room was one of her favorite things. She sat comfortably in the low-slung wooden seat, and gazed about the tiny extension of Aegon’s home, the place where he did some of his finest work.

The room was unique from others in Athens, because of what hung on the insides of the woven grass walls. Aegon was a clothing-maker, a tailor, and there were many different projects scattered about the room in different stages of completion. He was known for making some of the most elaborate himations, cloaks that were fit for royalty to wear, but as he didn’t require much in the way of food or supplies, Aegon always kept his prices low to cater to the peasants living near him.

Several garments were laid out on low work tables, some leather, some of woven cloth, some waiting for the final touches of beads, buttons, feathers, or any number of other decorations. Her fingers itched to reach out and touch them, to examine them closer and learn how they were put together. Aegon was just now putting the finishing stitches on another himation that he had promised would be ready by dawn.

His back was to her, he was busy with a task, so she turned from her inspection of some of his pieces to ask her mentor a question about a cloak, but then she heard the noise. At first, the sound was so quiet she wasn’t quite sure what she had heard. She tilted her head, straining her hyper-sensitive hearing in case it came again. Her entire being was tense, every muscle in her predatory body primed to move at the slightest provocation. Then, it pierced the air again.

This time, she recognized the Wolf song, though she had never heard it before. Wolves were not native to the area around Athens, though they may have lived in some of the wilder, less populated areas of the country. It didn’t matter, her ingrained instincts knew what it was, and all the fine hairs on her body stood on end. A shiver, not quite controlled, ran down her spine. Aegon was still facing away from her, but she saw him tense as well. He, too, had recognized the song. Almost faster than she could see, he turned toward her.

“Stay here,” he hissed. “I’m going to find Abana!” And he left in a flash.

With her hero and mentor now gone, her anxiety climbed enough for her to begin quivering in fear. The sound of Wolves had touched some instinct deep inside her, and she was more afraid than she had ever been in her life. If it were possible, her skin would have a light sheen of fear perspiration. As it was, her skin began to crawl, even though it was dry. She wanted to run, to hide, but she couldn’t bear the thought of disappointing Aegon in that way. She would stay and fight, fight to the death if that was what it took.

He returned quickly, beckoning her to follow as the sound of Wolves drew closer. He brought her through the main part of his home, a two-room structure built of stone. The larger of the two rooms held a stone hearth, a small table built of wood with its accompanying stools, and a low padded bench sitting under the biggest window. Aegon led her through to the smaller room, the room he shared with Abana. She had never been in this room; as they were her mentors, she had always respected their privacy. There were no windows in this room, and the door was made of heavy stone as well; only someone with incredible strength would be able to open or close it.

She expected Abana to be there, but she wasn’t. She looked at Aegon, curiously. He shook his head; it seemed that he, too, had no idea where his wife had gone. A cold mist of fear slicked over her as she fervently hoped Abana wasn’t in the garden she loved, where she tended plants as if they were her children. It would not do for any of them to be left so exposed to the threat bearing down upon them.

The scene shifted, in the way dreams do; now she was watching the climax of the attack. Merope was between the wall and the low bed belonging to their teachers, cowering with her arms covering her head, sobbing; it seemed that the poor girl gave no thought to the fact that she was responsible for this. Phemius lay thrashing on the bed, his dark eyes empty and unseeing, lost inside himself while the illness raged at its peak, and she knew from her own experience that whatever might happen next could not be any worse than the agony he was suffering now.

“Why don’t you get up and help,” she hissed through her teeth at the young woman. “You got us into this mess!”

But Merope only shook her head and continued to sob.

Realizing she would get no help from either Merope or Phemius, she reached under the bed, finding a sword that either Aegon or Abana had, in preparation, left there, and she swung it in her hands a few times, trying to get used to the weight and find the balance of the weapon. She was as ready as she could be. She tuned out Merope’s sobbing cries, and focused all her attention on the howling of the Wolves. They were closer now. So very close….Close enough she could hear not only the song but the snarls as well.

Once more, the scene shifted, and she found herself laying on her side, on the hard floor. Pain stabbed through her body and at that moment, she wished for death. She and Aegon were the two left alive, she, injured, and Aegon, valiantly trying to fight off a pack of ten alone. She tried to get up, tried to roll over, tried to reach for the sword mere inches from her hand. Each movement was agony, and she moaned, hoping to catch the attention of one or more of the Wolves. But through the snarling and the loud bumps and thumps of battle, no one heard her.

At that moment, she was paralyzed, and she could not close her eyes to the horror of what was happening before her. A muffled cry escaped her lips as she watched her mentor, who she had come to know as father, being torn to shreds. The scent of his blood was overpowering. The sound of sinew and muscle tearing was a roar in her head. One Wolf had Aegon by the shoulder, another had teeth sunk deep into his hips. The rest of the pack were darting in for quick slashes of fangs and claws before jumping out of his reach again.

With a cry of distress, the woman sat bolt upright in her four-poster bed, throwing aside the velvety soft bedsheets. The vestiges of the nightmare remained even though her eyes were no longer glazed with sleep. Had it been possible, she would have been drenched in sweat. Had it been possible, her heart would have been pounding. But for her, those things were impossible. Absently, she rubbed the old scars on her arm and tried to push away the memories that had haunted her for so long. For Lacey knew she was no longer in the 17th century.

Markie Madden was born August 19, 1975, in Midland, Texas. She grew up in the small town of Flushing, Michigan. While in high school, she took creative writing and was a photographer for the school newspaper. In 1993, she won the National Quill and Scroll Society award for best photo in a high school paper. She began writing her first novel, Once Upon a Western Way, while still attending school.

Markie is now married with two teenage daughters, three rescue dogs, and her horse, Athena, who is featured on the cover of her horse care guide, Keeping a Backyard Horse. She tried many times over the years to publish her novel, first on her own, and then hiring a literary agent, all without success. In early 2012, after getting her first smart phone and e-reader application, Nook, she discovered the world of self-publishing through a website called Smashwords. She finally published Once Upon a Western Way through this distributor in April, 2012.

In the late spring of 2013, Markie came down with a mysterious illness, which was ultimately diagnosed as leukemia (AML specifically). She underwent a rigorous treatment of chemotherapy, during which, at one point, her life was endangered. While she was hospitalized, an old high school friend who is also a published author reconnected with her. Since cancer and the treatment of cancer forced her out of the traditional workforce, Markie turned her attention back to the world of writing.

By December of 2014, Markie was the successful publisher of three books, her first published work, Once Upon a Western Way, now available in print as well as e-format, as well as a self-help guide to horse care, Keeping a Backyard Horse, available in print and e-format, and her cancer memoir, My Butterfly Cancer, available in print, e-format, and audiobook. Her other two will soon be available in audiobook format as well. Markie has founded Metamorph Publishing, in order to publish her own books, and she is now working with two other independent authors as well.

Currently, Markie lives in the small farm town of Fisk, Missouri (population 326), with her family, her dogs, and her horse. She is still writing and is working on a crime/paranormal series called The Undead Unit Series. Book one of the series, Fang and Claw, is now available. The second book of the series, Souls of the Reaper, is expected out in 2016, along with a thriller novel entitled Cured Delusions.

You can find her at:

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