Wednesday, 28 February 2018

Immortal Reckoning by Tara Fox Hall



Title: Immortal Reckoning
Series: Promise Me Series # 18 (Origin Story)
Author: Tara Fox Hall
Genre: Paranormal, Historical Fiction, Suspense, Romance
Publisher: Melange Books
Publication Date: February 27, 2018


Through the love and loss of the ages, immortality brings only one certainty: vengeance.


Disinherited and poverty stricken, bastard Danial clutches at the slim chance to earn a living as a guard, until a night attack leaves both him and his half-brother Devlin vampires. After finding true love with the aristocrat Lacey, Danial comes to the attention of James, the devious Vampire Lord of France. Enslaved by James, his love murdered, Danial plots to escape, his complex plan of years finally succeeding only to result in all of Europe’s demonic forces on the hunt for him.

After a reunion and subsequent falling out with Devlin, Danial travels to the new world of America in pursuit of a new life. Settling in the west, Danial forms alliances with native vampire Valerian and the witch Cheyenne to survive a game of cat and mouse with Devlin and protect his new love Kathryn amid his rapidly changing world. Triumphant yet nursing a broken heart, an undeterred Danial protects his friends and thwarts his enemies, determined to find a life of peace…until unexpected news comes of James’s presence, the one man on whom Danial has waited centuries to get revenge.




Other Books In The Series:

In the Promise Me series, Sarelle, a mortal woman, encounters a wounded (and sexy and handsome) vampire, Danial. Without knowing who he really is (a murderer for hire, for one), Sarelle begins a romantic relationship with him a little too fast. Interestingly, Sarelle also finds herself attracted to Danial's best friend, the werecougar, Theo. What will happen to Sarelle's relationship with Danial? Where does Theo fit in? Amidst new obstacles and relationship problems, Sarelle has to decide where her future lies.



Book One


Book Two


Book Three







Author Bio:

Tara Fox Hall’s writing credits include nonfiction, erotica, horror, suspense, action-adventure, children’s stories, and contemporary and historical paranormal romance.

She is the author of the paranormal fantasy Lash series, the paranormal romantic suspense Unhallowed Love series and the paranormal romantic drama Promise Me series.

Tara divides her free time unequally between writing novels and short stories, chainsawing firewood, caring for stray animals, sewing cat and dog beds for donation to animal shelters, and target practice.

All of her published children’s stories to date are free reads on http://www.childrens-stories.net.



Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Dragon Lore And Love by N.D. Jones



Title: Dragon Lore And Love: Isis and Osiris
Author: N.D. Jones
Genre: Paranormal Romance


A century ago, the Dragon Kingdom of Nebty was lost to dark-ness. Invaded by demon hordes hellbent on stealing two powerful scepters, the Demon King claimed the preternatural realm as his own. To survive, the dragons fled their beloved home and sought refuge in the human realm.

Having lived most of their lives in human form, Queen Isis and Rock Dragon Osiris, mere children during the Great Exodus, find themselves clinging to their culture and the ties that bind what’s left of Dragonkind. Safe and assured that they are free from the threat of demons, their love flourishes. Yet, on one horrific night, their lives are shattered by tragedy and betrayal. They learn that no realm is beyond the brutal reach of the Demon King.

Scores must be settled.

Love must be remembered.

And a lost nation must be reclaimed.

Life, death, and rebirth, Isis’s and Osiris’s future hinges on all three.


Excerpt:


PROLOGUE

The Dragon Kingdom of Nebty

Forests burned, dragons roared, and wings flapped in a deadly cacophony of violence and war.

Dragons of all sizes and colors were in the air and on the ground, battling to the death over who would control the twin deity scepters of Wadget and Nekhbet.

Nut, a blue-and-white sky dragon with a long snout, curled tail, and two horns on her head that curved back at the tip, stared up at her mate with frosty eyes of rebuttal.

Geb, a powerful green-and brown two-headed earth dragon with red eyes, spikey armored scales, and a whipping tail that ended with a flat arrowhead perfect for cutting and impaling, glared down at her. At the height of one hundred twenty-eight feet, Nut, half her mate’s size, growled at him when he used his massive head to shove her to the mouth of the Cave of Dep.

“You stay here and protect the hatchlings,” he ordered, as if the twin goddesses had left the earth dragon as the sole ruler of Nebty and guardian of the Gateway of the Two Ladies. They hadn’t. Nut and Geb ruled together. Some days, like today, when the inevitable war for power and dominance erupted, Geb’s protective nature made him high-handed and unyielding.

Glancing behind her at the cracked white shell and to the baby dragons huddled behind the fragments, Nut understood Geb’s position, although the thought of leaving her mate set the fire in her belly to boiling.

“If I fall in battle, your sky magic and ferocity will be all that stands between the foolish among us from getting their claws on the scepters.”

“I know.” Nut stepped closer to her mate, her snout going to one of his thick necks and rubbing. “It’s not just our dragon betrayers who want the power of the scepters that you must defeat, but the Demon Kingdom who seeks unfettered access to the human realm.”

That was as close as Nut would get to acknowledging the very real possibility that her mate may not survive this dark and dangerous night. For years, the Demon Kingdom, led by King Sansabonsom, had sought to undermine the rules set forth by the goddesses after they’d sought eternal rest within the scepters, leaving Nut and Geb as the gatekeepers between the preternatural and human realms.

Even as they spoke of Nut fleeing with their daughters and Geb remaining behind, sounds of warfare permeated the cold winter air, echoed by bodies crashing from the sky in flaming scales of defeat.

“Not all want the scepters. The strongest of our allies will stay and fight.” Geb lowered his heads and licked Nut’s face, an affectionate gesture she feared would be their last. “I need you to lead the others to safety, especially the young ones. If they stay, I can’t guarantee their safety.”

A stream of fire emerged from the darkness and behind Geb. The spray of molten heat slammed into the earth dragon. His wings, instinctively, snapped out and up to shield Nut and their hatchlings. With a bellow of fury, Geb leaped into the air, his wings taking him on a collision course with a lava dragon who possessed none of the earth dragon’s size or might.

In a matter of seconds, Geb had one of his mouths locked around the dragon’s reddish-black neck, and the other jaw clamped onto a black wing. With a hard tug, the wing and head disconnected from the dragon’s body. Magma spurted and oozed. The dead lava dragon smashed to the charred ground with a resounding thud.

Spitting out the wing and head, Geb turned to Nut, who still stood at the mouth of the cave. As they stared at each other, dragons not involved in the war began to move toward her. Most of them were dragon mothers with their hatchlings or dragons too young, old, or small to fight on either side but old enough to help tend to the youngest in their party.

“Take care of them, Nut. Fighting is easy, living and building from the ash of ruin are hard. Be well, my queen. And be safe. Tell my daughters I love the—”

Six dragons attacked Geb. Claws, tails, and fire sent him flying backward but not down and definitely not out of the battle. With an ear-piercing roar of rage, the two-headed earth dragon counterattacked. Fire, wings, and scales collided in the morbid, dark sky, the dragon battle epic in its savagery and sacrilege.

Dragons weren’t created to fight each other or intended to use the goddesses’ magic for personal gain and short-sighted goals of power and privilege. Yet, anarchy reigned. Her beloved Geb would fight the dragon traitors who would steal the scepters, rule the preternatural realm, and turn a blind eye while the Demon Kingdom invaded the human realm and feasted on the flesh of children.

With a heavy heart, Nut looked away from her heroic mate and to the dragons awaiting her directive. She would lead them to safety, as Geb had ordered. He and his most trusted allies were fighting to give Nut time to get as many dragons through the gateway and into the realm of humans.

With a low rumble, she called her daughters to her. On young, unsteady legs, they came, and she used her tail to lift them onto her back. She took to the sky, leading a caravan of dragons away from the only home they’ve known and toward the Gateway of the Two Ladies.

Dragon Lore And Love: Isis and Osiris is part of the...
20 Shades of Shifter: A  Paranormal Romance Collection


20 Shades of Shifter is a limited edition collection of new and exclusive paranormal romance novels guaranteed to suck you in from page one.

A shape-shifting dragon must win over his reluctant mate and stop Jack the Ripper. A Fae trucker becomes allies with an MC member when trying to deliver magical motorcycles to the Fae Queen. A wolf shifter is held captive in a human research lab where he is tortured until he meets one sexy scientist. An angel risked it all to steal the elixir of life and save his mortal love’s life and over two millennia later must get her to remember she once loved an angel. These stories and many more are included in this steamy, hot collection.

Don’t wait to read this set. It is only out for a short time before it will be gone forever!

Demelza Carlton, Evelyn Lederman, ML Guida, Aidy Award, Carmen Fox, David Adams, Sascha Illyvich, Lynn Best, Lilly Cain, Emma Alisyn, Vonnie Davis, Brenda Trim and Tami Julka, Nina Croft, K.L. Bone, N.D. Jones, Kailin Gow, & Moxie North







Author Info:

N.D. Jones, a USA Today Best Selling author, lives in Maryland with her husband and two children. She is the founder of Kuumba Publishing, an art, audiobook, eBook, and paperback company. Kuumba Publishing is a forum for creativity, with a special commitment to promoting and encouraging creative works of authors and artists of African descent.

A desire to see more novels with positive, sexy, and three-dimensional African American characters as soul mates, friends, and lovers, inspired the author to take on the challenge of penning such romantic reads. She is the author of two paranormal romance series: Winged Warriors and Death and Destiny. N.D. likes to read historical and paranormal romance novels, as well as comics and manga.


Website ✯ Twitter ✯ Goodreads ✯ Amazon ✯ Facebook ✯ Pinterest





Monday, 26 February 2018

The History of Hilary Hambrushina by Marnie Lamb


Title: The History of Hilary Hambrushina
Author: Marnie Lamb
Publication date: May 31st 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult


Hilary has one goal for her first year in junior high: to become popular. But her plans are turned upside down when her best friend leaves for the summer and a quirky girl named Kallie moves in next door. Kallie paints constellations on her ceiling, sleeps in a hammock, and enacts fantastical plays in front of cute boys on the beach. Yet despite Kallie’s lack of interest in being -cool, – Hilary and Kallie find themselves becoming friends. That summer friendship, however, is put to the test when school begins, reigniting Hilary’s obsession with climbing the social ladder. As Hilary discovers the dark side to popularity, she must decide who she wants to be before she loses everything.

AmazonB&N ⬪ Kobo ⬪ iBooks

Excerpt:

      I put on a sweatband and sneakers and brought down a water bottle. My plan was to pedal non-stop for an hour. I figured I could do it, since I was used to riding my own bike, and how different could this bike be? I should lose at least one pound that way, I told myself. So if I use the bike every day, in fifteen days I’ll have lost the weight I want to lose.
      I stepped over boxes and piles of books to reach the bike, which sat in a dark corner. This corner had a musty smell, like an old church that hadn’t been dusted since Queen Victoria was my age. A fake raccoon-fur hat someone had given my dad as a joke hung on the wall nearby.
      The bike seat was too high for me, but I couldn’t move it because it was screwed in place. Gripping the handlebars for support, I tried to heave my leg over the seat several times without success. I was becoming angry and sweaty, so I started breathing deeply, like I was having a baby, to calm myself down. “Hoo hoo hoo.”
      “Hilary!” shouted my mom. “Why are you making monkey noises?”
      I froze. I knew that if I said, “It’s nothing,” she’d come down, and I didn’t want her to think I needed help getting on a stationary bicycle. So I called, “I’m just playing a game.”
      I managed to lift myself on to the bike. I had to stretch to reach the pedals, but I finally did and started pumping. It was O.K. at first, but soon, my muscles felt like some psycho was using them as rubber bands. And some people actually do this for fun! What’s wrong with them, I thought. I reached for the water bottle and tried to squirt some water in my mouth. Nothing but air came out. I’d forgotten to fill the bottle! I threw it away and continued to pump furiously. Objects on the wall began rattling, and I was making so many strange noises my mother must have thought a whole pack of monkeys was performing a conga line in the basement. I began to have visions of monkeys in spangly pink bikinis kicking up their heels (did monkeys have heels, I wondered) on stage at the Princess of Wales Theatre.
      Suddenly my sweatband fell over my eyes. I didn’t stop to fix it, though. You’re going to pump for the full hour, not for fifty-nine minutes, I ordered myself. Instead, I tried nodding vigorously to get the sweatband to fall under my chin. It fell over my nose and I couldn’t breathe. Then something dark and furry leapt on my head, covering my eyes and tickling my face like a bunch of feathers. I screamed, batting at the thing with one hand and pumping frantically, as if I could escape that way. I soon realized it was only my dad’s hat, but I still couldn’t get it off. Finally I stumbled off the bike and yanked the hat’s tail away from my eyes.
      I had no energy left to remove the hat, so I left it on and trudged upstairs. I passed my mom, who took one look at me and started to snicker. Ignoring her, I went into the kitchen to check the clock. I’d been on the bike five minutes.
      So that was the end of my experiment with exercising.

Author Bio:

A Journey Prize nominee, Marnie Lamb earned a master’s degree in creative writing from the University of Windsor. Her short stories have appeared in various Canadian literary journals. Her first novel, a YA book named The History of Hilary Hambrushina, is forthcoming from Iguana Books. When she is not writing fiction or running her freelance editing business, she can be found cooking recipes with eggplant or scouting out colourful fashions at the One of a Kind Show.



Guest Post by Marnie Lamb:

Bullying: A Single Retrospective

My young adult novel, The History of Hilary Hambrushina, deals in part with bullying at a junior high school and was inspired by my own experiences. Although I’ve often been teased, more or less good naturedly, for being different, I’ve experienced only two distinct periods of behaviour that I would define as bullying: persistent, cruel teasing in which the perpetrators knew full well that they were hurting me. This occurred once in school when I was twelve and again nearly twenty years later when I was working full time in an office. In both instances, the bullies were groups of females with whom I’d previously been friends and from whom, for various reasons, I had begun to distance myself socially. I tried to remain civil and amicable towards my former friends, particularly in the office, but I was not allowed to leave the group without paying a heavy toll.

Ever since I was a child, I’ve been introverted, slow to speak, sensitive, and in some situations, shy—qualities that, in the extrovert-centric North American culture, made me an easy mark for bullies. Because I was not the type to make a scene or assert myself, the bullies quickly discerned that they had found the ideal target. I’ve come to realize, though, that the bullying had less to do with any particular characteristic of mine and more to do with the fact that I had dared to leave the sanctity of the in-group. As punishment, the queen bee ordered her workers to sting me. My gentle personality simply facilitated the bullying.

In both periods, I tried to brave the taunting alone before eventually confiding in my parents, particularly my mother. My parents offered immediate support both emotionally and practically. The school bullying began in elementary school and continued in junior high school when the bullies and I graduated from grade six and switched schools for grade seven. This occurred in the 1980s, before schools had anti-bullying programs, as some now do. My parents spoke to several of my teachers at both schools. Most teachers were sympathetic and promised to look out for me and address bullying if they spotted it. Yet I can recall my homeroom teacher from grade seven expressing little support for my situation. “She and I are not in the same boat” was my mother’s diplomatic assessment of this response. And other than the nanoboost my self-confidence received when I understood that most of my teachers didn’t think I deserved the bullying, I can’t recall my teachers being much help. The bullying continued in the hallways, in the lunchroom, on the bus, and especially in the ninth circle of hell that is a junior high school girls’ washroom. The bullying didn’t diminish until I reconnected with a friend from grade three who had left my elementary school and was now attending the same junior high school. She introduced me to some fellow “nerds” who also became my friends. Once I had a group of allies, the bullies backed off.

When I was taunted as an adult, the responsibility of confiding in someone at the institution in which the bullying was occurring (in my case, a workplace) fell to me alone. I chose not to involve anyone else, primarily because I had already made a comment about the queen bee to my manager, which had backfired. During a performance review, I noted that I sometimes had difficulty concentrating because of the amount of socializing that went on around my cubicle. My manager pressed me to name the noisemakers. Although I refused, she soon figured out to whom I was referring. Several months later, she spoke to the queen bee about this, and that’s when the bullying ramped up. Concerned that involving my manager or anyone else might escalate the situation, I chose a different way to address it.

When the queen bee was absent one day, I asked the worker bees to meet me in the lunchroom. There, I said that I had noticed tension between us and I was sorry if I had done anything to cause a conflict. The workers batted their eyelashes and expressed surprise, saying that they “had no idea” that there was any tension between us. The following day, the ringleader returned, less a queen bee and more a moth with a broken wing. She even smiled sheepishly at me. The workers had clearly phoned her and told her about my conversation with them, as I had hoped they would. That diffused the tension and paused the bullying. But within a couple of weeks, a low buzzing started up again. Two weeks after that, however, the queen bee left the company and the bullying stopped. Looking back, I wish that I had confided in Human Resources instead of trying to play the saint by taking on the problem alone. But I bought into the teenage idea that involving someone else would only intensify the bullying—which is exactly what the bullies wanted me to think.

Both of these experiences have fundamentally shaped me. I’ve realized that the abuse at the hands of former friends has caused me to exercise restraint and place barriers between myself and the very people with whom I should be open: true friends. My reserve is such that even some of my current friends have said that they are sometimes uncertain as to whether I want them to reach out to me when I’m in a crisis or whether I want them to leave me alone. Perhaps it’s fate, then, that the publication of this book has forced me to reveal more of myself by going on social media and writing articles like this. These revelations have encouraged me to open up to close friends about other personal issues and struggles. By sharing Hilary’s story, I’ve taken several strides in my lifelong journey of healing and peace.




Sunday, 25 February 2018

The Legendary Series by L.H. Nicole




Legendary
Book 1

Aliana Fagan spent her childhood traveling the world, dreaming of legendary heroes and mythical lands. But after the sudden death of her parents, she hides behind the safety of her camera and her art until a vivid recurring dream compels her to dig into her father’s research about Avalon and Camelot. When she is hurled into a magical realm by forces she thought were only the stuff of fairy tales, she finds herself thrown into an adventure she could never have imagined. Nearly everything she thought she knew about Arthurian legend was wrong.

The independent eighteen-year-old is shocked to find that the people of Avalon think that she is the Destined One, the only person who can summon King Arthur back to life from his hidden chamber. Most surprising of all is that it’s up to her to lead the Knights of the Round Table on an epic quest–an adventure that will transport them across the seven magic realms to reclaim all that has been lost so they can defeat the evil Mordrid for good. But first, she must bring the ancient warriors into her world and reunite them with their lost brothers. Chaperoning the legendary knights-with-a-chivalry-complex as they navigate the modern world is a constant challenge, and she certainly never thought she’d be caught between her intense feelings for the noble Sir Galahad and her growing friendship with the King.

To fulfill the prophecy, Aliana will have to discover the meaning of friendship, bravery, loyalty, true love, and forgiveness. But can she do it all in time to save the realms from Mordrid’s impending Armageddon?

AmazonB&NiBooks


Claiming Excalibur
Book 2

Aliana Fagan has done what many thought impossible: she’s awakened King Arthur from his fifteen-hundred-year sleep, reunited the Knights of the Round Table, and even beaten Mordrid and Morgana LeFay in battle.
But the Destined One’s quest has only begun.

Before the knights can “unearth and reclaim their lost relics” they must survive the trip to Charleston, South Carolina and meet the newest member of the Round Table. If King Arthur’s men thought Aliana and Lacy were tenacious, they’ll be even more surprised by Dawn, the third member of the fem-trio.

Deadly secrets, unexpected allies, and a traitor lurking in the shadows await Aliana and the new Round Table as they continue their search for Excalibur. Their only clue is a beyond confusing poem from a mysterious book that speaks of a terrifying creature guarding the legendary sword. Trying to build a somewhat normal relationship with Sir Galahad adds a whole new level of complexity to Aliana’s task, especially when several among them suspect the White Knight may not be wholly himself. Her friendship with King Arthur grows closer, and when circumstances become intense, he may finally get the chance with Aliana that he’s been pining for.

Mysteries, legendary quests, and haunting memories will either unite the members of the New Round Table or fracture their bonds. Aliana and her crew only have seven months before the planets align and Mordrid can seize the power he needs to conquer the seven realms. Can the Destined One keep her new family together and lead Arthur to his destiny of saving the realms? Or will a centuries-old plot for revenge finally spell the king’s end?

AmazonB&NiBooks



Relics Of Camelot
Book 3

Making a devil’s bargain with a Fae queen is a dangerous thing.

Thrown back to the golden days of Camelot, Aliana needs to find the object that will lead her and the Knights of the Round Table to the Grail of Power. But Aliana, the Destined One, must also figure out and complete a mysterious task before she can return to her own time. The consequences of revealing Camelot’s future to King Arthur or any member of the Round Table family could be devastating, and keeping the future a secret becomes harder by the day. She is forced to keep her secrets, feeling more alone than ever, even with the support of her new friends and allies. With the unwelcome knowledge of their looming deaths, will she be able to resist the temptation to save the people she loves?

While she is trying to figure out her purpose for being sent to the past, the attention of Sir Galahad and King Arthur continue to be a delightful yet confusing distraction. Her feelings for Arthur—even this version of him who doesn’t know her—continue to grow. The sparking sensation she’d normally felt whenever she touched Sir Galahad is mysteriously missing, but she can’t deny a continued connection with the protective knight.

Weapons powerful enough to destroy even Excalibur surface, along with a shadowy figure that even seems to have influence over Mordrid. The time of the eclipse grows ever closer and everything Aliana thought she knew will once again be tossed into question as she continues on her legendary quest.

AmazonB&NiBooks




A King Will Rise
Book 4

The war is about to begin. Whose colors will you fly as a King rises?

Aliana, Dagg, and the New Round Table are so close. The alignment is only weeks away. All they need is to find the Grail of Power and unite the seven realms, but Mordrid is drawing ever closer and victory is far from assured.
All the bonds, questions, and betrayals will come to a head as the new Knights of the Round Table prepare for the final battle. To win, Aliana will have to do what hasn’t been done in over three millennia: claim the power of the alignment and use it to either save the realms or raze them to the ground.

Join Aliana, and her family and allies, for the final installment of their Legendary quest.

AmazonB&NiBooks




Author Bio:

L.H. Nicole is a seasoned Pastry Chef at the happiest place on earth and a lifelong fairytale (Disney and Grimm) lover.

She believes in love at first sight, is addicted to 80’s & 90’s cartoons and anything that can capture her ADD-way-to-overactive-imagination.

Joan Lowery Nixon and L.J. Smith were the first authors she became addicted to and who inspired her to steal away whenever she could to read and write.







Saturday, 24 February 2018

Hiding by Jenny Morton Potts


A gripping psychological thriller with chilling twists, 
from a unique new voice.




Keller Baye and Rebecca Brown live on different sides of the Atlantic. Until she falls in love with him, Rebecca knows nothing of Keller. But he’s known about her for a very long time, and now he wants to destroy her.

This is the story of two families. One living under the threat of execution in North Carolina. The other caught up in a dark mystery in the Scottish Highlands. The families’ paths are destined to cross. But why? And can anything save them when that happens?










About the author:

Jenny is a novelist, screenplay writer and playwright. After a series of 'proper jobs', she realised she was living someone else's life and escaped to Gascony to make gîtes. Knee deep in cement and pregnant, Jenny was happy. Then autism and a distracted spine surgeon wiped out the order. Returned to wonderful England, to write her socks off.

Jenny would like to see the Northern Lights but worries that’s the best bit and should be saved till last. Very happily, and gratefully, settled with family.

She tries not to take herself too seriously.




Guest Post by Jenny Morton Potts:


PUTTING YOUR BEST BLURB FORWARD

So you know your manuscript inside out, literally and literarily. It’s your baby. The moment has come to dress it up in a lovely cover and make the readers coo at it. No-one knows your little one like you do, nor loves it so passionately, but now you must send it into the wide world. Hey, you’ve done your best, but now you need to prepare Junior for reality. It’s time to blurb your baby.

This is easier than you might think. Don’t be daunted. The pressure of attempting genius can get to a writer. Take a deep breath and try to stop being yourself for a wee while. Try instead to be Kate Someone or Joe Whoever. Close your eyes (well, only if you can have this read to you) and imagine…:

Kate is at Stansted airport, running a little late. She won’t have time for a coffee – she can grab that on the plane – but Kate’s gotta get a book.

Joe’s in Waterstone’s on Piccadilly. It’s always chocka at lunchtime in the shop and he’s got 7 minutes before he has to be back at work.

Kate sees they’ve got those self-serve checkouts. Oh God, she’s useless with those. Her knees grip tightly to the carry on case wedged between her feet. Quick, grab the best looking covers. There! These two. Read back!

Joe sees a terrific looking cover on a stand. He glances at his watch and reaches for the lovely book, flips the jacket over.Jenny Morton Potts

Ok, open your eyes and start typing your blurb in here ______________

Finished? Do you think either Kate or Joe would pick yours? Will they even have time to read it all?

Now I hear you, many people buy online or consider the trip to their gorgeous independent bookstore a joyous occasion. Coffee after, or during. Perhaps pick up a ‘dine in for two’, creating a reading space where cooking was to have been. But trust me, the leisurely browser will like your concise blurb just as much as Kate Someone and Joe Whoever. What they want, is only to feel they will like your book; really like it. They just want to taste how good it is, to know their thirst will be quenched. When they’ve twisted open the cap, when they’ve heard the fizz, they’ll screw the top back on tightly and save it for later. (And if they don’t like the sound of it, that is fine too. More of that later…)

There will now be a short cessation of metaphor and a move towards acronym.
You can begin with a line which gives the entire essence. (Don’t worry about location unless it’s a USP.) ‘E’ is for Essence, therefore.

I found an interesting example when reading about this online. Kate Atkinson’s ‘Behind The Scenes at The Museum’:

Ruby Lennox was conceived grudgingly by Bunty and born while her father, George, was in the Dog and Hare in Doncaster telling a woman in an emerald dress and a D-cup that he wasn’t married. Bunty had never wanted to marry George, but he was all that was left.


This tells you something about the characters and setting but more importantly, you hear the style. You know whether you will like it. You are already taking part in the story, after two sentences. Maybe there is an encompassing line like this in your novel which does this (preferably near the beginning)?

An author and publisher should be aiming to ensure compatibility between readers and books. An excellent book, of course, will always outsell its demographic but it’s important to satisfy readers, for them to finish the book believing they made the right choice. If a reader is misled by the jacket, the consequences will haunt their review pages. Also, um, not everyone can like your book.

(One other thing about Atkinson’s blurb, just in passing, indulge me: the adverb does wonders. Don’t believe all the rubbish about deleting adverbs. ‘Grudgingly’ does some sterling work here.)

Alright, so it is a bit tricky, the blurb. Ok, ok. At least it’s easier than a synopsis. With a blurb you don’t want to give much away. It’s an enticement and matcher only. A second ‘E’ then and an ‘M’.

And most books are going to need a flourish of jeopardy. That’s ‘J’. Let the reader know what’s at stake. Feel free to end with a question mark. Eh? Thereby involving the reader, drawing them in.

There are variations of course. You’ll need some pith for humour and some dark water for crime. But mostly stick with EEMJ

Have a look at a dozen books which are as close to yours as possible (though no-one’s baby is as fabulous as yours) and analyse the blurbs.










Friday, 23 February 2018

Living in the Past by Jane Lovering


Title: Living in the Past
Author: Jane Lovering
Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction/Time Travel
Publication Date: 14th February 2018
Publisher: Choc Lit



Do you ever wish you could turn back time?

Grace Nicholls has a few reasons for wanting to turn back the clock … although an archaeological dig at a Bronze Age settlement on the Yorkshire moors is not what she had in mind. But encouraged by her best friend Tabitha, that’s exactly where she finds herself.

Professor Duncan McDonald is the site director and his earnest pursuit of digging up the past makes him appear distant and unreachable. But when a woman on the site goes missing, it seems that his own past might be coming back to haunt him once again.

As they dig deeper, Duncan and Grace get more than they bargained for – and come to realise that the past is much closer than either of them ever imagined …

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Author Bio:

Jane was born in Devon and now lives in Yorkshire. She has five children, four cats and two dogs of variable sanity. She works in a local supermarket and also teaches creative writing. Jane is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and has a first-class honours degree in creative writing.

Jane writes comedies which are often described as ‘quirky’. Her debut, Please don’t stop the music, won the 2012 Romantic Novel of the Year and the Romantic Comedy Novel of the Year Awards from the Romantic Novelists’ Association.

Jane’s novels include: Please don’t stop the music, Star Struck, Hubble Bubble, Vampire State of Mind, Falling Apart, How I Wonder What You Are, I Don’t Want to Talk About It, Can’t Buy Me Love, Little Teashop of Horrors and Living in the Past.








Thursday, 22 February 2018

Fire and Bone by Rachel A. Marks


Title: Fire and Bone
Series: Otherborn #1
Author: Rachel A. Marks
Publication date: February 20th 2018
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult


“Gossip Girl meets Percy Jackson in the glitz and grit of L.A….”

In Hollywood’s underworld of demigods, druids, and ancient bonds, one girl has a dangerous future.

Sage is eighteen, down on her luck, and struggling to survive on the streets of Los Angeles. Everything changes the night she’s invited to a party—one that turns out to be a trap.

Thrust into a magical world hidden within the City of Angels, Sage discovers that she’s the daughter of a Celtic goddess, with powers that are only in their infancy. Now that she is of age, she’s asked to pledge her service to one of the five deities, all keen on winning her favor by any means possible. She has to admit that she’s tempted—especially when this new life comes with spells, Hollywood glam, and a bodyguard with secrets of his own. Not to mention a prince whose proposal could boost her rank in the Otherworld.

As loyalties shift, and as the two men vie for her attention, Sage tries to figure out who to trust in a realm she doesn’t understand. One thing’s for sure: the trap she’s in has bigger claws than she thought. And it’s going to take a lot more than magic for this Celtic demigoddess to make it out alive.


Excerpt:

LILY

      I try to hide my shivering as I wait before the altar, in my position as the Bonding begins. Around me, shadows dance over the cairn walls from the restless flames licking up the ram’s body—thesacrifice on the pyre behind me—and the smell of sweat and burnt flesh smother the smoky air.
      The King of Ravens paints an alarming image, standing almost naked across from me on the other side of the blood circle. He wears the corona radiata, the golden laurel-leafed crown, on hishead of onyx hair. His short beard is neatly trimmed, combed with lavender oil for the ceremony. His sharp silver eyes study me beneath a heavy brow.
      I try not to think about the past. Or future. I try not to think about what those hard hands will feel like on my skin when he seals this Bond.
      I study the stone floor rather than look in those metallic eyes. I feel them on me, though, the same way they have been for the fortnight I’ve been here preparing for the ceremony. He hasn’t touched me; he’s only brought me gifts and insisted I sit with him beside the greatfire in the evening before he goes out for his hunt. Sometimes I smell him in the hallway outside my rooms. But he never comes in, thank the goddess. The scent of blood is heavy on him in those moments. I’m not sure what I would’ve done if he’d attempted anything.
      After this is done, it won’t matter. My bed will be his. As will my life.
      A druid walks back and forth behind me, tossing rosemary and lavender onto the pyre after each stanza of his spell. He calls to the wind from the east, he calls to the waters in the west, and he pulls the spirit of flame and earth into the cairn with us, asking the Penta to approve the Bond set to be made between the two most powerful Houses, as he pleads for a blessing from our mothers, Brighid and Morrígan, and thanks the Cast for their permission to seal the Bond between the two very different powers.
      A female druid comes to my side with bowl and brush, beginning to paint my skin in blue woad, tracing patterns of knots and runes across my back, then baring my chest and continuing.
      The king’s gaze follows the woman’s strokes, and when she’s finished, he raises his chin at me in approval but says nothing. What does he see when he looks at me? My wild copper hair? My simple features? The awkward birthmark just above my heart? I’m round of cheek and hips and
not much of a beauty. But however I look to him, I will belong to him.
      Determination is set in hard lines on his face, and I wonder if the torque on his neck is working properly. I can see his dark energy lifting in silver and black curls over his shoulders now. It should be tight inside his skin, as mine is. The iron shackle should be holding it in place so that we don’t harm each other in the first merging, before we can get used to the feel of each other’s powers.
      The female druid moves to the king next and begins painting the woad in circles over his torso. The druid chanting behind me recites the final section of his spell, walking the ram’s-blood circle painted on the floor. He holds a rowan stick aloft, flicking rosewater over the king and then me as he passes by, mumbling, “A price paid, a covenant sealed, in earth and blood and ash, in spirit and flesh and fire.”
      The price is my will, my soul, in payment for the life of the human prince that I took.
      In the center of the circle, between the king and me, is an altar with two bowls set atop, one full of salt, one full of rye.
      The iron union dagger rests between them.
      I stare at it, imagining the blade cutting into my flesh. And I can’t help when my gaze moves to the king. I want to blink and make this moment a dream, perhaps find myself in the thicket with Lailoken, among the bluebells in the Caledonian wood.
      I should run from this son of Morrígan, deny him, deny our mothers, and let the world burn. But my heart twists at the thought. I was running from duty when fate took my heart from me, when the prince succumbed to my fire’s will. It was the childish notion of freedom that tore him
from me.
      Now it’s time to accept my punishment for allowing the humans to glimpse our world. Time to atone.
      The druid’s voice fills the room again. “When moon gives birth to stars,” he says, in a droning hum, flicking more rosewater over us with the rowan stick, “let this Bond be sealed in blood.”
      My skin prickles with fear as the king takes the cue, reaching out to pick up the ceremonial dagger by the leather-wrapped hilt. I focus on not moving, not making a sound, as I watch him bring the blade to his chest, tip pricking his left breast. A drop of crimson pearls up at the spot.
      With a slow hiss of breath, he cuts across.
      Dark blood slides down his abdomen in a thick swath of red. “My blood with yours,” he says. And he turns the knife, holding out the hilt for me.
      My hands clench into fists at my side, and I force my shaking limbs to still.
      I breathe in slowly again. Then I reach out, taking the ceremonial dagger from him, careful not to touch his fingers.
      I pretend not to care about the cage I’m about to be locked in. About the pain in my soul from loss, from the goddess Brighid abandoning me to this darkness, pain from the reality of everything in front of me.
      I press the tip of the blade to the center of my chest, the point breaking the skin. I look into the silver eyes of the king in front of me. And consider my fate.
      One deep plunge to the heart and the pain will end.
      One plunge.
      One.

















Songlist:

  • This Is The Time (Acoustic) - by Nothing More 
  • Running With The Wolves - by Aurora 
  • The Hunger In Your Haunt - by Crywolf 
  • Jenny - by Nothing More 
  • Everytime - by The Broods 
  • Haunting - by Halsey 
  • Cherry Wine - by Hozier 
  • Youth - by Daughter 
  • Waves - by Dean Lewis 
  • Begin Again - by Purity Ring 
  • Feel Stronger - by Gemini

Author Bio:

Rachel A. Marks is a cancer survivor, a writer and artist, a surfer and dirt-bike rider, chocolate lover and keeper of faerie secrets. Her four kids and amazing hubby put up with her nerdiness with tremendous grace, even when she makes them watch Buffy or Smallville re-runs for days on end. She was voted: Most Likely To Survive A Zombie Apocalypse, but hopes she'll never have to test the theory.





Also by Rachel A. Marks:

Winter Rose

The Dark Cycle
Books 1-3









Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Shattered Destiny by Tamara White & Yumoyori Wilson



Title: Shattered Destiny
Series: Reclaiming The Throne, #1
Author: Tamara White & Yumoyori Wilson
Publication date: February 15th 2018
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance


What if one act of kindness shatters your destiny? One moment that changed your life forever. Would you embrace it or fight with everything you had?

Born to a powerful mother and father, both highly respected in our clan for their magic and strength, I was neither powerful nor respected. I was born a null. Devoid of any of the strength or power of my clan and to make matters worse, my attempted shift into dragon form revealed I’m nothing more than a mere human.

When my mother became ill and my father abandoned us, I became the head of the household. I didn’t mind doing hard labor; actually, I enjoyed knowing I could be of use to my mother by performing the duties she could no longer do.

My life had become the same routine until I decided to step in and help an injured dragon who crossed my path. After healing them, my clan turned on me, taking me to the King to be interrogated. Now, I’m free and on the run – beginning my journey into the unknown.

I am Abigail Fiammetta. I vow to live and reclaim the shattered pieces of my life. Even if I have to kill to do so.



Shattered Destiny is a new reverse harem, paranormal series. Recommended for 18+ audience, containing mature sexual content, violence and strong language.





Excerpt:

      "If you think I did such a horrible job, why don't you stop talking the talk and walk the walk? Fight me," I declared.
      I could hear gasps around me, the villagers were clearly shocked by my announcement. Raphael narrowed his eyes at me, giving me a good up and down look. He grinned, sighing dramatically before he took a step forward, his tall frame hovering over me.
      I wasn't going to be intimidated by his height, glaring up at him in defiance as I stood my ground.
      "You could get hurt, pretty girl," he whispered low enough, so only I could heed his warning.
      "I don't care. Sometimes you need to prove your worth to be seen as an ally rather than a burden," I whispered back.
      I tried to ignore the soft fragrance that hit my nose and ignore his handsome face.
      I bet all the women swooned over him, and even though I wouldn't tell him to his face, he was attractive and doing his share of making my body tingle in want.
      Maybe it was the weird connection I was trying to ignore—a force begging for us to be closer…to be one? Wait a minute. Did he just call me pretty?
      He grinned, and for a second I saw pride flicker through his purple eyes that lingered on my lips before he stepped away.
      "Alright. Let's see what you're made of, A-B-Gail."
















Author Bio:


Yumoyori Wilson is from Toronto, Ontario. She loves to sleep and write her days away. She works at night as a registered nurse. She has a little addiction to bubble tea and coffee but loves to workout. She has big plans for the writing world and can't wait to share them with everyone.









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