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Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – RUNE’S FOLLY (Tower of Shells) by Garen Glazier

RUNE'S FOLLY Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for RUNE’S FOLLY, the first book in the young adult fantasy series, Tower of Shells, by Garen Glazier. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

RUNE'S FOLLY (Tower of Shells #1) by Garen Glazier

RUNE’S FOLLY (Tower of Shells #1) by Garen Glazier

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title:
RUNE’S FOLLY
Series: Tower of Shells #1
Author: Garen Glazier
Publisher: Only Child Press
Release Date: February 1, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
By day, Tansy McCoy is a florist making charmed bouquets for the citizens of Junonia, capital of the Kingdom of Terranmar. By night, she’s an assassin and the keeper of the Dangerous Garden where deadly blooms grow. Together with the town tailor, butcher, baker, and metalsmith (just don’t call her a candlestick maker), she is part of the Guild, a secret group of spell-wielding thieves and mercenaries. Their task: consolidate all that remains of the realm’s fading magic under the ruthless King Zeno’s control.

Impetuous loner Tansy chafes under her Guild demands. She longs to quit her town and trade and head for the hills. Unfortunately, King Zeno has other plans. He wants to marry off his daughter to Terranmar’s famously reclusive wizard, Rune Hallows, and he’s willing to have the Guild kidnap him to make it happen. Fail to deliver the wizard and the consequences will be swift and deadly.

Reluctant but determined, Tansy sets out on the long journey to faraway Wentletrap and Rune’s desolate tower by the sea. To get there she must cross a swamp full of sinister surprises, battle a werewolf, and outrace a bloodthirsty band of revenants, while she wrestles with her own magical powers that seem to be expanding in unpredictable ways.

But reaching Rune’s tower is only the beginning. When Tansy learns the real reason behind the king’s contest, she’ll need to decide whether to give in to the growing forces of magic ready to reclaim Terranmar or embrace her newfound powers to save the kingdom.

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Excerpt #1
“Good afternoon, sir,” said Tansy.

“Afternoon,” he said as he made quick work of the short distance between the door and Tansy’s workbench near the back of the shop, the old floorboards creaking. He looked relaxed but expectant.

“Is there something I can help you with?” she asked. “I do flowers both traditional and magical here at The Flax & Fern.”

“Mina sent me.”

Tansy’s eyes narrowed as she assessed the stranger. The palace seal was stitched onto his breast pocket. An official on royal business.

“Where’s Robbern?” Tansy said, referring to the usual palace agent.

“He’s been removed from the employ of the House of Neberon. I am Denal. I’ll be taking Robbern’s place.”

“Has he now, and will you now? Hmm.”

Tansy made a mental note to burn a little incense for poor Robbern. No one was ever simply fired from the House of Neberon. All the people that worked for the House were what Ms. Caraway would have called ne’er-do-wells. Tansy could think of a few other choice terms for their ilk, but she’d liked Robbern well enough. He wasn’t as bad as the others and that was probably why he hadn’t lasted long.

“Indeed,” Denal sniffed. “Now, if you’d be so good as to fill this list of requests, I’ll be on my way presently. I have other business to attend to this afternoon.”

He proffered her a list written in Mina’s ornate script, pinched between his index and pointer fingers in an affected manner.

Tansy took it with a sigh and quickly scanned the requested items.

10 belladona berries

2 bunches digitalis

5 taxus cones

1 levantus bloom

“Wait here,” she said, as she grabbed her basket.

She stepped through the red door at the back of the shop and locked it behind her, then strode quickly through the kitchen and down the hall until she reached the tiny sunroom at the back of the living space she shared with Ms. Caraway.

It was a fine day and the sun was high in the sky. Tansy let its bright rays warm her skin for just a moment before she crossed the threshold into the walled garden beyond. The pungent scent of rosemary and clove was on the air and, looking down, Tansy saw the herbs mixed with the rough, white grains of salt that Ms. Caraway preferred. The old witch must have sensed that a new visitor would be crossing their path today. Taking another deep breath Tansy noted that the protection spell could have marinated in the moonlight a bit longer before it was spread on the ground, but she was comforted by the sight and smell of it nonetheless.

It was early summer and the garden was in full bloom. A bounty of roses in every hue spilled across the narrow path. Cornflowers in white, pink, and blue swayed gently in the breeze, while henlias sprouted in vibrant reds and oranges near the garden walls. Tansy hoped that the sight of the cheerful flowers would bolster her spirits, but the new arrival had raised her guard. And while she knew it was her duty to provide the House with plants from the Dangerous Garden, the requests were coming at increasingly close intervals and for increasingly opaque reasons.

The path ended at a black, ironwork gate. At its center, an ornate skull fashioned from the metal grinned a warning. Retrieving a key from a string around her neck, Tansy slipped it into the bolt and turned. The gate swung backward without a sound and she stepped through into her own secret garden.

It was small but verdant, and, in many ways, more beautiful than the one that provided the traditional blooms for her florist shop. It did seem strange that beauty and death could be so inextricably linked in the plant world. But, then, that was often the case with humans as well.

She donned a pair of gloves that she kept in her apron before gathering the jet-black belladonna berries, then frowned in concentration as she plucked five cherry-red taxus cones. Taking a pair of shears from her pocket, she severed the stems of the vibrant digitalis before turning her attention to the bush bearing the cerulean petals of the levantus flower.

Still mulling over the unwelcome arrival of the Crown’s new agent, she snipped the bloom off before realizing it was the last one on the bush. She was glad that Mina’s list had only called for one as a quick check revealed just shiny green-black leaves and not even the beginnings of a bud. She made a mental note to mention it to Ms. Caraway. The witch was old and slightly bent, but she was still the best at encouraging the plants to produce their various flowers, fruits, roots, bulbs, and seeds. When she talked, green things listened.

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Author Garen Glazier

Author Garen Glazier

About the Authors
I have always called Seattle home and find the perpetual gloom to be a wonderful writing ally. I like coffee shops, bookstores, dancing in my living room and singing in my car. The opening scene of Up makes me cry. Three Amigos makes me laugh. Fashion magazines, croissants, and long, long baths are my guilty pleasures. They might occur separately or together. I prefer boxing classes to yoga, and I get some of my best ideas when I’m running. I loved school and spent more time than one really should getting a business degree in marketing and a master’s in art history. In an ideal world I’d go to bed at 2am and wake up at 10am. I’ve never been an early bird, and I feel strongly that alarm clocks kill dreams.

 

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Where to Garen Glazier
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Giveaway
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Book Review + Giveaway – EXTINCTION OF ALL CHILDREN (Extinction of All Children) by L.J. Epps

EXTINCTION OF ALL CHILDREN (Extinction of All Children #1) by L.J. Epps

EXTINCTION OF ALL CHILDREN (Extinction of All Children #1) by L.J. Epps

4 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
A young adult, fantasy novel about a teenager who is the last eighteen-year-old in her territory. There will never be another child; every baby born after her has been taken away. Everyone wonders why she survived.

Emma Whisperer was born in 2080, in the small futuristic world of Craigluy. President Esther, in charge for the last twenty-two years, has divided their world into three territories, separated by classes—the rich, the working class, and the poor—because she believes the poor should not mingle with the others. And, the poor are no longer allowed to have children, since they do not have the means to take care of them.

Any babies born, accidentally or willfully, are killed. Emma is the last eighteen-year-old in her territory; every baby born after her has died. Somehow, she survived this fate.

During the president’s Monday night speech, she announces a party will be held to honor the last child in the territory, Emma Whisperer. Emma must read a speech, expressing how happy she is to be the last eighteen-year-old.

Emma doesn’t like the rules; she doesn’t believe in them. So, she feels she must rebel against them. Her family doesn’t agree with her rebellion, since they are hiding a big secret.

If this secret gets out, it will be disastrous, and deadly, for her family.

During Emma’s journey, she meets—and becomes friends with—Eric. He is one of the guards for the president. She also befriends Samuel, another guard for the president, who is summoned to watch over her. As Emma meets new people, she doesn’t know who she can trust. Yet, she finds herself falling for a guy, something which has never happened before.

After doing what she feels is right, Emma finds herself in imminent danger.

In the end, she must make one gut-wrenching decision, a decision that may be disastrous for them all.

“Fans of dystopian fantasy will devour this book. L. J. Epps writes a story that, while dealing with heavy subject matter, is still a light, enjoyable read. This dystopian fantasy novel ignites the imagination, and is a must read for fans of The Hunger Games and the Divergent Trilogy.”
—Kristina Gemmell, Beta Reader

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My Review
I’m a sucker for a good dystopian tale, and one involving the extinction of children has such incredible possibilities, I couldn’t wait to sink my teeth into this. Emma Whisperer is the last child born in Territory L (lower class). Someone had to be the last child born when the president decrees that those in the lower class do not have the resources necessary to raise children. But that doesn’t stop those who lost children or younger siblings from hating Emma for something she had no control over. Because if a woman happens to get pregnant even after all the precautions and birth control provided by the government, the woman is forced to carry that baby to term, only to have the baby executed and the woman send to prison. It seems over-the-top cruel at times, until I remember all the horrors I read in THE HUNGER GAMES and THE HANDMAIDS TALE. There are a lot of similarities to both of those stories as well as DIVERGENT. In addition to Territory L, there is Territory M (middle class) and Territory U (upper class) where people aspire to move to, though it’s not rare and not easy to qualify. As time goes by, Emma discovers she was the last child allowed to be born for a reason. As she uncovers even more secrets, she is more determined than ever to change things in her world. For everyone.

Plot
While not action-packed, the plot does move at a steady pace. There were a few intriguing twists that kept me turning the pages despite the lack of action. Even the climax seemed to wrap up too quickly, and that’s one of my only real complaints with the pacing. The main plot centers around Emma and her place in Territory L. Her inability to go with the flow and buck the system at every turn lands her in jail for 30 days where she discovers a lot more than she ever realized about the inner workings of her government. She also meets several young male guards who challenge her in different ways, all of which she is ill-equipped to handle. The first of a trilogy, THE EXTINCTION OF ALL CHILDREN ends with a satisfying conclusion to the book, but with enough anticipation for what comes next, that I’ll be reading the next book in the series for sure.

Characters
The story is more plot driven than character driven and that shows up in the character development. The themes are dark and the characters have a hopelessness about them that carries through the story. No deep flaws are overcome at this stage and no real growth happens yet. But I suspect we’ll get that in the next couple of books in the series.

What I Enjoyed About THE EXTINCTION OF ALL CHILDREN
1. The Concept.
 What a great idea for a story. It has all the elements of the worst dystopian world, including a protagonist I can root for and an antagonist I love to hate.

2. Twists and Turns. More than a few surprises caught me off guard and in several times I was sure I knew what was going to happen, but it turned out I was wrong.

3. Emma. There’s nothing lovable about her, but Emma’s rough edges and harsh exterior are exactly what she needs to survive in her world. She’s part Katniss, part Tris, and part Offred.

4. Theodore. Emma’s brother is both annoying and sweet. The way he respects authority, even an evil regime, is excusable when you realize his family is the most important thing in the world to him.

5. The Settings. The entire Territory L is drab, bleak, grey, and you never lose sight of that through the author’s scene settings.

Bottom Line
A solid start to a dystopian adventure

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About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: EXTINCTION OF ALL CHILDREN
Series: Extinction of All Children #1
Author: L.J. Epps
Release Date: June 3, 2016
Pages: 250
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian
Rating:
4 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

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About the Author
L.J. Epps is a lover of all things related to books: fiction and nonfiction novels, as well as biographies and autobiographies. She has also been known to sit and read comic books from cover to cover, several times over.

Over the last few years, L.J. has written several manuscripts; her mission is to publish all of them. She enjoys writing fiction in several genres, including contemporary romance and women’s fiction, as well as young adult dystopian, science fiction and fantasy. She loves to write because it immerses her into another world that is not her own.

Where to Find L.J. Epps
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Giveaway
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Young Adult Book Review + Giveaway – A SOLDIER AND A LIAR by Caitlin Lochner

A SOLDIER AND A LIAR Blog Tour

A SOLDIER AND A LIAR by Caitlin Lochner

A SOLDIER AND A LIAR by Caitlin Lochner

4 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
In a world on the brink of war, four superpowered teens must learn to work together for peace in Caitlin Lochner’s action-packed debut novel, Soldier and A Liar.

Lai Cathwell is good at keeping secrets. As a Nyte, a supernaturally gifted teenager who is feared and shunned by the ungifted, this skill is essential to survival. Orchestrating her own imprisonment to escape military duty has only honed her ability to deceive others. But when rebels start attacking the city, Lai is dragged back into the fight with a new team of Nytes.

Thrown together with Jay, a self-conscious perfectionist consumed by the desire to be accepted; Al, a short-tempered fighter lying for the sake of revenge; and Erik, an amnesiac hell-bent on finding his memories and his place in the world, Lai realizes she’s facing an entirely different kind of challenge–one that might just be impossible. But if this team can’t learn to work together, the entire sector will be plunged into war.

 

 

 

 

 

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My Review
I wasn’t sure what to make of A SOLDIER AND A LIAR at first. It starts off slow and the characters are difficult to relate to, but I’m glad I stuck it out. The story and character development really picks up at about the 50% mark and takes off after that. Lai Cathwell is 17-year-old superpowered soldier. She and fellow young adults, Al (Johann), Erik (Mendel), and Jay (Kitahara) form an unlikely team of enhanced humans known as Nytes, on a mission to take out an elite squad of rebel Nytes determined to overthrow the Etiole government. While Nytes have powers, they are shunned for them, treated as second-class citizens at best. Lai wants acceptances and equality for Nytes, while the other three each have their own reasons for accepting the mission. With four different motivators, to say they’re a team would be a massive overstatement. Trust is hard to come by and suspicions run high. As their leader, Jay wants cohesion and solicits Lai’s help to make that happen. The more Lai learns about her teammates, the more she both likes them and distrusts them. But they’ll be forced to work together, whether they like it or not, to prevent all out war.

Plot
I think the primary plot is about the mission and stopping the war, but it feels more like it’s abut the relationships between the four Nytes as they get to know each other and grudgingly begin to trust one another. The action scenes are really well done, but they don’t drive the plot as much as the interpersonal scenes do. And it’s those scenes that made me care about the outcome of the action scenes. There’s also a budding romance between Jay and Lai always simmering just below the surface. This relationship came across as forced initially, but as with the rest of the book, it hit its stride about halfway through.

The Characters
The characters are my favorite part. Watching shy, socially awkward Jay try to navigate his attraction to Lai, Lai’s heavily armored exterior giving way to friendships, Erik’s selfishness giving way to something more, and Al’s standoffishness meld into someone I could identify with was what made this story really work for me. The author has created deeply authentic characters that are initially tough to get to know, but evolve with time at the same pace for us as they do for Lai. By not trying to force us to care early on, the author does us a favor and allows the reader’s feelings to grow organically as the story progresses. There are a lot of secondary and tertiary characters, who only make sporadic appearances, so I found myself flipping back to reread the scenes where they were first introduced.

Top Five Things I Enjoyed About A SOLDIER AND A LIAR
1. Scene setting. The author has a way of bringing her settings to life in this world where people live in underground sectors to protect them for dangers above ground that only Nytes can survive. The descriptions are so vivid, I had no difficulty immersing myself in this world.

2. Friendships. The relationships between the characters develop over the story, so that the reader builds the same relationship at the same time as the narrator.

3. Super powers. This isn’t your typical superhero story, but the powers the Nytes possess are no less fun and shape the story as much as anything else.

4. Equality. Whether it’s Sneetches with stars upon thars, the color of one’s skin, or being a Nyte or Etiole, everyone wants to be seen as equal, and this classic theme is well done.

5. Lai. She’s fierce, independent, and just vulnerable enough to make her a heroine worth rooting for.

Bottom Line
A different take on superheroes and dystopian adventures with strong characters.

Disclaimer
I was provided with a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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About the Book
Title: A SOLDIER AND A LIAR
Author: Caitlin Lochner
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Release Date: February 19, 2019
Pages: 301
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian/SciFi Romance/Adventure
Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo

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Author Caitlin Lochner

Author Caitlin Lochner

About The Author
(Um, so, wow bios are hard.) I studied creative writing at the University of South Florida and used my BA in words to become an English teaching assistant in Tokyo. I’m in love with storytelling of any kind, but especially in the form of books, manga, and video games. If you ever want to talk nerdy, I am VERY down.

 

 

 

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Where to Find Caitlin Lochner
Goodreads | Website | TwitterInstagram

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Giveaway
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Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – LOSING NORMAL by Francis Moss

LOSING NORMAL Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for LOSING NORMAL, a stand-alone young adult dystopian adventure, by Francis Moss. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on his giveaway.

LOSING NORMAL by Francis Moss

LOSING NORMAL by Francis Moss

About the Book
Title: LOSING NORMAL
Author: Francis Moss
Publisher: Encelia Press
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian Adventure
Release Date: November 5, 2018
Link: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
Everyone we love, everything we know, is going away… and only an autistic boy can stop it.

Alex knows exactly how many steps it takes to get from his home to Mason Middle School. This is normal.

Alex knows the answers in AP math before his teacher does, which is also normal.

Alex knows that something bad is coming out of the big screen in his special needs class. It’s pushing images into his head, hurting him, making him forget. Alex pushes back, the screen explodes, and nothing is normal any more.

Giant screen televisions appear all over the city. The programming is addictive. People have to watch, but Alex cannot.

Sophie, the sentient machine behind all this, sees the millions and millions of eyeballs glued to her and calls it love. To Sophie, kids like Alex are defective. Defectives are to be fixed…or eliminated.

 

 

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Excerpt #3
Chapter Ten: Alex

Even inside the abandoned old house, we smelled the fires. Sara and I would go out walking, early in the morning, before the Calliope Guardians started patrolling. Yesterday at 7:38 AM, I saw three firemen in the fire station on the boulevard, sitting on a red GMC 3500 EMS truck, watching a Calliope television broadcast on the wall. Sixty-one meters down the street, smoke was coming from the front windows of a little white and blue house. This was normal now.

Later that afternoon, Sara and I walked the four hundred and five steps down to the little convenience store, which was still open. We pulled down our baseball caps when we passed under the big Calliope screen on the roof, which has video surveillance in it. I felt it, probing, looking, but it mostly doesn’t bother me now, unless I get too close. Sara just walks faster. I think she’s dealing with it better than me.

“…incidents of vandalism have decreased markedly, according to reports from across the country. The President, seen here at a Rose Garden press conference, announced today that he intends to lift the state of emergency as soon as next week.”

There was no one in the store, and almost nothing on the shelves. We found two overripe apples and a squished package of bread. I wanted to leave some money, but Sara looked at me with her right eyebrow raised, which I knew meant I’m acting stupid or crazy. We went back to the old house. On the porch of the yellow house at the corner, a woman in a black tee-shirt was sitting on one of the raggedy easy chairs, looking at a picture book, then looking up. She saw us walk by, but didn’t say anything. Like me and like everyone, she was probably trying to remember who she was, who she used to be. This was also normal now.

When it got dark, Sara lit candles and the one lantern we have, because the electricity goes off a lot. We each ate one apple and I had two slices of bread. Then Sara locked the doors and fell asleep on the couch. I laid down on the cot. I dreamt that I was flying, and I heard a woman’s voice that sounded like my mom. “It’s time to come home.”

The next morning, there was an engine noise outside on the street, and I peeled back the newspapers that covered the front window to look. A white van with the Calliope logo moved slowly down the block. I woke Sara and we went out the back door and down the alley.

We walked on the dirt middle section of the boulevard where the trolley tracks used to be. It’s twelve blocks, which is three thousand four hundred sixty-seven steps away from the house. The red brick library, which I had been to a few times, was closed. The broken glass front doors had plywood on them, where someone had spray-painted, “Help Us.” Above the doors was a giant Calliope video screen, ten meters tall, eighteen meters wide. I pulled down my blue baseball cap with the New York Yankees logo and looked down at the cracked sidewalk; Sophie was looking for me.

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw the giant screen.

“The Melonian army is four parsecs away, and traveling at twice light.”

“That doesn’t give us much time, Jim. We’ve got to move the fleet now.”

Fifteen people stared up, gape-jawed, watching. When I looked at it, the images dissolved into colored lines and shapes coming at me, washing over me, trying to make me forget. I looked away.

A gray-haired man, wrapped in a dirty green blanket, walked toward us, playing a sad tune on a soprano saxophone hanging from a colored strap around his neck. A pony-tailed man turned away from the screen and frowned. He put his finger to his lips and made a shushing sound. The old man ignored him, walking closer. Other people turned away from their dreams to look.

“Quiet!” someone said. The old man stopped playing, picked up a piece of asphalt, and hurled it at the screen. The asphalt bounced off, leaving a square of dark black pixels in a bottom corner of the screen. People yelled, dodging the rock as it fell to the ground. The old man stood in front of the screen and began to play his sad tune.

The movie stopped and a card appeared on the screen: ATTENTION. A woman’s voice said: “Attention. Public safety violation. Public safety violation. Under Emergency Order 56, you are required to stay where you are. Remain calm.”

We walked away.

A white van screeched to a stop at the curb. Two men wearing black jump suits got out, grabbed the old man, took the saxophone from him, and threw it in the street. They tossed him in the back. The van drove off. Another white van pulled up and two men stepped out of it, holding shiny black devices with antennas. They were looking for me and Sara.

We ran.

I am trying to remember who I am. I am Alex. I am Alex.

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Author Francis Moss

Author Francis Moss

About the Authors
Francis Moss has written and story-edited hundreds of hours of scripts on many of the top animated shows of the 90s and 00s. Beginning his television work in live-action with Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, he soon starting writing cartoons (“a lot more jobs, and also more fun”), staff writing and freelancing on She-Ra, Princess of Power, Iron Man, Ducktales, and a four-year stint on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, writing and story-editing more episodes than you can swing a nuchaku at.

One of his TMNT scripts, “The Fifth Turtle,” was the top-rated script among all the 193 episodes in a fan poll on IGN.COM. A list of his television credits is at IMDB.COM.

Francis, in partnership with Ted Pedersen, also wrote three middle-grade non-fiction books: Internet For Kids, Make Your Own Web Page, and How To Find (Almost) Anything On The Internet. Internet For Kids was a big success, with three revised editions and twelve foreign language versions. He’s the sole author of The Rosenberg Espionage Case.

After high school where he grew up in Los Angeles, Francis had one dismal semester at a junior college, and then enlisted in the Army. He became a military policeman and served in Poitiers, France, falling in love with the country, taking his discharge there and traveling around Europe (including running with the bulls in Pamplona) until his money ran out.

He attended the University of California, Berkeley and became active in the civil rights and anti-war movements, still managing to earn a BA and an MA in English lit (“the major of choice for wannabe writers”).

Francis is married to Phyllis, a former music teacher and active viola player. They have a son, a daughter and one grandson. They live in Joshua Tree, California.

Where to Find Francis Moss
Goodreads │ Website | Facebook

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Giveaway
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Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – RUNE’S FOLLY (Tower of Shells) by Garen Glazier

RUNE'S FOLLY Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for RUNE’S FOLLY, the first book in the young adult fantasy series, Tower of Shells, by Garen Glazier. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

RUNE'S FOLLY (Tower of Shells #1) by Garen Glazier

RUNE’S FOLLY (Tower of Shells #1) by Garen Glazier

About the Book
Title:
RUNE’S FOLLY
Series: Tower of Shells #1
Author: Garen Glazier
Publisher: Only Child Press
Release Date: February 1, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
By day, Tansy McCoy is a florist making charmed bouquets for the citizens of Junonia, capital of the Kingdom of Terranmar. By night, she’s an assassin and the keeper of the Dangerous Garden where deadly blooms grow. Together with the town tailor, butcher, baker, and metalsmith (just don’t call her a candlestick maker), she is part of the Guild, a secret group of spell-wielding thieves and mercenaries. Their task: consolidate all that remains of the realm’s fading magic under the ruthless King Zeno’s control.

Impetuous loner Tansy chafes under her Guild demands. She longs to quit her town and trade and head for the hills. Unfortunately, King Zeno has other plans. He wants to marry off his daughter to Terranmar’s famously reclusive wizard, Rune Hallows, and he’s willing to have the Guild kidnap him to make it happen. Fail to deliver the wizard and the consequences will be swift and deadly.

Reluctant but determined, Tansy sets out on the long journey to faraway Wentletrap and Rune’s desolate tower by the sea. To get there she must cross a swamp full of sinister surprises, battle a werewolf, and outrace a bloodthirsty band of revenants, while she wrestles with her own magical powers that seem to be expanding in unpredictable ways.

But reaching Rune’s tower is only the beginning. When Tansy learns the real reason behind the king’s contest, she’ll need to decide whether to give in to the growing forces of magic ready to reclaim Terranmar or embrace her newfound powers to save the kingdom.

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Excerpt
The tower was his retreat, the night his refuge.

During the day he was the subject of ridicule. The children stared. The old women whispered, shaking their heads as he passed by. He would curse them under his breath and pull his hood down.

Rune’s days were harsh, soured by the small minds and cruel tongues of the villagers that called Wentletrap home.

But the nights were his.

And most nights, by candlelight, he would shape with knowing fingers a crude little figure, a man, out of the red clay he gathered from the rolling hills just beyond the shore. He would thrust two arched sticks into the clay man’s back, and to these he carefully attached feathers. Albatross, gull, and osprey.

His ancient books kept him company, and they had taught him the right words. Whispering them into the sour-salt air, the wings of his creation would beat once, twice, and then the clay man, his homunculus, would fly. It would soar over the moonlit ocean until the morning came and the cruel sun cracked the clay, wilted the wings, and stole the magic away.

But before the blasted rays of daylight destroyed them, the homunculi would return to Rune’s tower bringing back ingredients from their journeys. Leaves, hair, teeth, sand, among other things. Most common enough, some rarer than rare. Occasionally, if Rune was lucky, clutched in one of the creatures’ tiny fists would be a shell. Always white, but of different sizes, shapes, and textures.

When the shells came back to the tower, Rune’s stern face would soften just a touch, and the barest hint of a smile would play across his lips.

Last night had been one of those delicious evenings.

And so, from his day amongst the rabble, he had recalled the particularly hateful sneer of Old Lady Turnbull, the baker’s wife. He hadn’t forgotten that brat Bilga and the mud she’d kicked across his shoes either.

With his lips nearly pressed against the chest of his little winged man, he’d given it one last set of instructions, breathing mischief into its heart. Then, as the homunculus zipped not east out to the sea but west into the village, Rune had walked down the spiral steps that ran along the curved wall of his tower.

At the bottom he repeated his route, but this time slowly. His fingers bumped along the shells that covered every inch of the wall, the intricate patterns glowing softly at first and then more brightly the further up his keep he went. From floor to floor he climbed until he stood once again on the uppermost story.

To the casual observer it would appear that here, too, the wall was carpeted with shells, but just above the casement of the large window overlooking the dark sea, a space no longer than a finger remained.

He held the shell to the wall and spoke the words he knew so well. When he took his hand away the shell stayed put, glowing so brightly along with the others that Rune could hardly bear to look.

The shells’ light reached its zenith and then dimmed, but an afterimage of the swirls and whorls Rune had so carefully rendered on his tower walls remained, dancing across his vision and filling the rest of his night with reveries of years past and lost love.

Now, as the first tepid rays of sun slid through the perpetual fug that surrounded his tower and the sorry little village nearby, he crossed to the western facing window and opened it wide.

Directly below him the curve of his tower plummeted to a rocky piece of land. As the tide was in, the sharp rocks and weather-beaten keep formed a tiny island half a mile or so from the shore.

High tide was Rune’s favorite time of day. He could rest peacefully knowing that none of Wentletrap’s citizens would disturb him. During low tide the swirling eddies of the black ocean would recede, revealing a greasy spit of land just wide enough for a single footpath. More often than not a shucker or fisherman or some other human flotsam would shuffle out of the godsforsaken village to cross the spit and stand at the bottom of his tower, shouting out in graceless tones for assistance, occasionally, or retribution, more commonly.

He expected Old Lady Turnbull or Bilga’s father would be paying him a visit later, dirty and grey and cursing his existence. Although it might be difficult for Old Lady Turnbull to make the trip herself, what with the swelling and the stink, not to mention the boils, so perhaps it’d be the baker himself. Rune might even give him the antidote if he came bearing a conciliatory basket of scones. Bilga’s father, on the other hand, was on a fool’s errand, for while baked goods might temporarily melt Rune’s cold heart, nothing could move him to offer a cure for the terminally obnoxious teen.

Smiling now, Rune stepped away from his territorial view of Wentletrap and its miserable environs. He was about to descend the stairs for a well-deserved cup of tea and early morning nap when a strange movement caught his attention out the opposite window. Quickly crossing the floor he tore open the casement and leaned out, certain he was seeing things. But no, there it was, flapping its smoking wings erratically as pieces of its legs and torso began to break off and plummet into the sea below.

It was a homunculus he’d sent out a few days prior. It hadn’t returned, which happened occasionally, and he’d given it up for lost. It should have been ashes by now, turned to dust beneath the sun’s merciless rays. Rune’s face hardened with concern.

As he watched, the little creature gave one last flutter of its wings and disintegrated, red dust and feathers blowing out to sea, but not before Rune reached out and caught the bundle the homunculus had been clutching in its tiny hands.

Wrapped with a black ribbon was a nosegay of purple flowers. Examining the sweet-smelling bouquet at a safe distance he saw the dusty spears of lavender, the dark hoods of wolf’s bane, and the round petals of oleander.

“Troubling,” Rune muttered to himself. “Quite troubling.” Then, “I wonder.”

He turned from the window and crossed to the stairs, holding onto the ominous flowers with just his finger and thumb pinched around the ribbon.

Leaving the uppermost floor, Rune circled round the stairs to his library. He quickly bypassed seven of the eight tall, double-sided bookcases that bisected the circular floor at regular intervals. Stopping in front of the last, he crouched down and used his index finger to pry a slim volume covered in red velvet from the bottom shelf.

Carefully he cracked open the cover of A Compendium of Flowers and flipped the pages, coming first to lavender. When Rune saw its traditional meaning his brows furrowed. When he got to the symbolism of oleander he gritted his teeth. And when he turned with dread to the page describing wolf’s bane he snapped the book shut, strode up one flight of the curving stairs to the kitchen and tossed the nosegay into the fire smoldering under a crusty pot of stew or potion. He couldn’t remember which.

As he watched the blooms crackle and blacken, his mind buzzed with the message his homunculus had delivered. Caution, beware. Future misfortune. All in the color purple for royalty.

Had the king discovered his plan? Rune was sure he’d been discreet, but Zeno had eyes everywhere, the suspicious bastard. Then again, the message was rather oblique, and subtlety was definitely not his majesty’s strong suit. As a rule, he skipped warnings altogether and went straight for punishment, harsh and swift.

No, this didn’t seem like the king’s doing. Maybe the color was just a coincidence, but something told him that whoever decided sending a message via flower would be the best means of communication would certainly never ignore their shade in terms of conveying intent or meaning.

Rune went through the names of the king’s various associates in his head, dismissing all of them as either too brutish or too dull to be the origin of the troubling flowers. He was still pondering the odd dispatch when a harsh voice calling his name blew in on the dank ocean breeze filtering down from the still-open window upstairs.

“Rune! You bloody mongrel! Show yourself!”

Ah, Bilga’s father. Was the tide out already?

Rune tossed A Compendium onto the podium that stood near the base of the stairs before vaulting them two at a time. Never one to back down from a colorful exchange, he didn’t want to keep the man waiting.

“What do you want?” Rune bellowed on his way up. “I hope it’s to apologize for afflicting the world with your brutish progeny.”

Mysterious messages would have to wait; verbal abuse heavily peppered with colorful insults was what passed for entertainment around here. Besides, he was almost done with his shells. One more and he could leave everything behind: the tower, Wentletrap, the whole stinking kingdom along with any and all parties dealing in floral threats.

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Author Garen Glazier

Author Garen Glazier

About the Authors
I have always called Seattle home and find the perpetual gloom to be a wonderful writing ally. I like coffee shops, bookstores, dancing in my living room and singing in my car. The opening scene of Up makes me cry. Three Amigos makes me laugh. Fashion magazines, croissants, and long, long baths are my guilty pleasures. They might occur separately or together. I prefer boxing classes to yoga, and I get some of my best ideas when I’m running. I loved school and spent more time than one really should getting a business degree in marketing and a master’s in art history. In an ideal world I’d go to bed at 2am and wake up at 10am. I’ve never been an early bird, and I feel strongly that alarm clocks kill dreams.

 

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Where to Garen Glazier
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – FLYGIRL by R.D. Kardon

FLYGIRL Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for FLYGIRL, a stand-alone adult adventure/suspense, by R.D. Kardon. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

FLYGIRL by R.D. Kardon

FLYGIRL by R.D. Kardon

About the Book
Title: FLYGIRL
Author: R.D. Kardon
Publisher: Acorn Publishing
Release Date: January 3, 2019
Genre: Adult Adventure/Suspense
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo

Synopsis
It’s 1997. Women stand beside men in combat and fly fighter jets. Pilot Tris Miles is not content with her job as a First Officer for tiny Clear Sky Airlines. She wants to be a Captain—the only way she knows to prove her worth as a pilot and atone for a deadly mistake.

To further her career, Tris accepts a prestigious job with Tetrix, Inc. But her dream of becoming pilot-in-command twists into a nightmare.

As the company’s first woman pilot, she encounters resistance, marginalization and harassment on a daily basis. Fortunately Tris has one thing her co-workers can’t deny—skill.

When Tris finds herself in a crippled airplane thousands of miles from home she must prove she can lead. With her career on the line, can Tris earn the respect she’s been craving? And if this is the end, can she find the strength to forgive herself?

 

 

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Excerpt
TRIS LOST ALL visibility as the airplane pierced a thick slab of fog. She slid her focus from the miasma outside the cockpit window to the flight instruments in front of her. They were her eyesight now. She trusted them. They told the truth.

She scanned the gauges and smiled. Tris heard their silent language; woman and machine entwined in the exceptional conversation of flight.

“Clear Sky Two-Five-One, cleared for the approach,” the Columbus, Ohio approach controller announced over a scratchy connection. Tris nodded to Captain Danny Terry, sitting two feet away in the left seat. His jaw clenched as he worked the radios on their last flight of the day.

“Gear down,” Tris commanded.
The landing gear groaned and clicked as they lowered into position. Locked on final approach, the turboprop glided toward the runway, a concrete slab somewhere below them. Its twin engines spun in sync on the airplane’s wings. Tris monitored every bump and twitch of the plane. She answered each with a tap of the controls.

Tris nudged the yoke to bank the airplane left, the plastic coated steering column cool beneath her hands. She thought of all the ways pilots measure movement: degrees of heading, feet of altitude, ticks of the clock. Always counting up, down, until the next critical moment. As Clear Sky 251 slid toward the ground, Tris counted down.

Then she saw the flash. Just for a second, an amber warning light flickered.

“Danny, check the gauges. We had a caution.”

“Five hundred,” the airplane’s synthesized altitude alert announced. Tris checked the altimeter. So close to the ground and they still had zero visibility through the late-summer glare.

“I don’t know,” Danny said as he scanned the gauges. “Wait. It’s the oil pressure on number one. The needle’s going crazy. It could be nothing, just a blip.”

Or the number one engine could be about to fail.

“Ok.” She’d need full power on both engines to climb if they couldn’t land—and she might not have it.

“Nothing in sight.” Danny squirmed

forward in his seat to catch the first glimpse of runway lights. His breath grew more labored with every foot of altitude they lost. He wouldn’t see the runway until the very last second, if at all—right when Tris would decide to land the plane or thrust it back up into the soup.

“Roger.” Tris stayed focused and in control. As seconds passed, the plane slid lower, lower, in a stable descent. The only sounds were the whir of spinning dials, the click of needles, the white noise of flight. Tris eyed the altimeter, her hands soft but firm on the power levers.

Danny’s hand twitched behind hers; a backup. He strained to see the runway. Decision time loomed a few feet away.

The caution light blinked again. Tris had to keep her eyes on the navigation gauges. The closer the airplane got to the ground, the more sensitive those indicators became. If she strayed off course, even a little, she’d lose all guidance and have to climb, or else there was no telling where they’d hit the ground.

She felt Danny’s hands move closer to the controls, protecting them in case she faltered.

She didn’t. Tris saw the runway, dead ahead.

“I’ve got it,” Danny said quickly as he keyed the mike. “Columbus Tower, Clear Sky Two-Five-One, runway in sight.”

“Roger, Clear Sky Two-Five-One, Runway Two-Four, cleared to land, wind two-five-zero at three knots.”

“Landing,” Tris said. She looked outside, blinked to focus, and kept the plane moving straight along the runway centerline, edging toward the earth. The altimeter registered field elevation just as the plane’s rear wheels softly touched the ground.

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Author R.D. Kardon

Author R.D. Kardon

About the Author
Robin “R.D.” Kardon had a twelve-year flying career as a corporate and airline pilot. She holds an Airline Transport Pilot certificate and three Captain qualifications. Her travels took her all over the world in every type of airplane from small single-engine Cessnas to the Boeing 737. Robin earned her B.A. in Journalism and Sociology from NYU and J.D. from American University, Washington College of Law. A native New Yorker, Robin now lives in San Diego, California with her beloved rescue pets.

“Flygirl,” a work of fiction inspired by her own aviation experience, is her first novel.

 

 

 

Where to Find R.D. Kardon
Goodreads Website | FacebookTwitter

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Giveaway
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Young Adult Book Review + Giveaway – WAYPOINT (Waypoint) by Deborah Adams and Kimberley Perkins

WAYPOINT Blog Tour

WAYPOINT (Waypoint #1) by Deborah Adams and Kimberly Perkins

WAYPOINT (Waypoint #1) by Deborah Adams and Kimberly Perkins

5 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
How far will they go to restore the power?

It’s been lights-out for three months and society is already falling into chaos.

Teenage tech-genius Simon Harper and his team of fellow gamers have been searching for the cause of the outage since it went down. Simon and his twin brother West are often at odds, but when the key to restoring power drops into their hands, they’ll risk everything and join forces to bring it back.

Descend into an epic, young adult adventure, featuring family and friendship with a heart-skipping side of romance by debut authors Deborah Adams and Kimberley Perkins.

Mysterious deaths and disappearances are piling up, and unknown enemies are everywhere. As the brothers make their 500-mile journey to Waypoint they’ll have to decide who they can trust, and which secrets can be told.

“Thanks to its tantalizing pace, well-established consequences, and complicated character development, this novel is worth writing home about. I didn’t feel ready for it to end.” -Independent Book Review

 

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My Review
I need to start off by saying this is the first book in a series. It wasn’t obvious from the description, so I wasn’t expecting the ending, but now that I know, I’m anxiously awaiting the next installment. Told from four third-person points of view, this is a little different than most young adult dystopians. Instead of a single protagonist, we have four, although Simon seems to be the main character. Twin brothers Simon and West inhabit a world without power, similar to the TV show Revolution from a few years back. West is a classic player with good looks and swagger to match. Simon is a nerd among nerds, living inside a role-playing game he accesses through power he generates with solar panels, something that must remain a secret. When a mysterious man is killed in front of Simon, he’s given information that may allow him to turn the power back on. He and West embark on a journey to Washington DC, only to be separated almost immediately. While West is at home in the wilderness, Simon is out of his element. Each winds up with a traveling companion, Riya for Simon and Alex for West. Both girls provide a romantic element as well as the foil that each boy needs. Along the way, all four encounter danger and learn a lot about each other and themselves.

Plot
The plot centers around Simon and West meeting up in DC to turn the power back on. Several subplots feed the main plot, but they’re minor. With four points of view, we get a lot of insight into their journeys. The authors throw everything at them, one setback after another, at a pulse-pounding pace that kept me turning the pages long past when I should have been doing something else. While this is primarily a plot-driven tale, the authors do a good job with character development which feeds into the story well.

The Characters
The characters are where this story really shines. All four main characters are deeply-drawn and complex in ways that enhance the plot. I loved all four of them, and even though at times their goals conflicted with one another, I never stopped rooting for all of them. West and Simon couldn’t be more different as twins, and yet that bond is strong, making them realize how important they are to one another. Alex and Riya were as different from one another as Simon and West, but they each bring something to the relationship that the brothers desperately lack, rounding out this foursome to perfection.

Top Five Things I Loved About WAYPOINT
1. The plot. Young adult dystopian is my favorite genre. I love dark worlds that are recognizable, peppered with characters who are still trying to figure out themselves much less the world around them.

2. Angsty love. Not one, but two romances with enough angst to satisfy even me.

3. The characters. I can’t pick a favorite; I love them all. Like two sides of a coin squared, they balance each other out.

4. Action. There’s plenty of action, adventure, and suspense to keep me riveted to the pages.

5. The ending. Normally I’m not a fan of cliffhanger endings, but the authors crafted a satisfying conclusion to this portion of the story while leaving me on the edge of my seat for more

Bottom Line
A wonderful young adult contemporary romance that examines how social anxiety can transform someone from the inside out.

Disclaimer
A pulse-pounding young adult dystopian page-turner!

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About the Book
Title: WAYPOINT
Series: Waypoint #1
Author: Deborah Adams and Kimberly Perkins
Publisher: Rocket City Publishing
Release Date: December 1, 2018
Pages: 296
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian Romance
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
Links: GoodreadsAmazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AUBarnes & Noble | Kobo

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Authors Deborah Adams and Kimberley Perkins

Authors Deborah Adams and Kimberley Perkins

About the Author
DEBORAH ADAMS and KIMBERLEY PERKINS are friends and coworkers. They share a love of coffee, literature, and teenagers saving the world. By day, they work for a defense contractor in Huntsville, Alabama as the HR Director and an Excel-wielding Analyst, respectively. By night, they build worlds with words and devour stories. For more information about Deborah Adams and Kimberley Perkins and their foray into writing, check them out on social media.

 

 

 

 

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Where to Find Deborah Adams and Kimberley Perkins
Deborah Goodreads | Kimberley GoodreadsWebsite | Kimberley Twitter | Deborah Twitter

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Giveaway

WAYPOINT Giveaway

 

Release Day + Giveaway – KNIGHT OF WANDS (Cards of Love) by Claudia Burgoa

Today is release day for KNIGHT OF WANDS, a short story in the adult action/adventure romance series Cards of Love, by award-winning, international bestselling author, Claudia Burgoa. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive teaser, and details on her giveaway. You can currently pick up the ebook for just $0.99.

KNIGHT OF WANDS (Cards of Love) by Claudia Burgoa

KNIGHT OF WANDS (Cards of Love) by Claudia Burgoa

About the Book
Title:
KNIGHT OF WANDS
Series: Cards of Love
Author: Claudia Burgoa
Release Date: October 3, 2018
Genre: Adult Action/Adventure Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo 

Synopsis
A chance for a sweet future, or a recipe for disaster? 

Kaitlynn
My dream was to cook my way to fame and fortune, not run myself ragged keeping my late parents’ quaint Savannah restaurant afloat. My sister is useless, I’m chronically short-staffed, and even Gertie, my antiquated oven, hates me.

Then in charges Oliver, like a Golden Knight. He’s hunky and charming and makes others feel at ease. He’s earnest and kind, optimistic and extroverted. My best friend. My sister’s ex. Picking up the slack like he never left all those years ago. Making my body shiver with the lightest touch, the slightest smile. It would be so easy to let him be my knight in shining armor. But I can’t let him, even though he makes Gertie purr like a kitten.

Oliver
I practically grew up waiting tables alongside KitKat. She’s a brilliant chef, but it’s clear she’s no manager. I’ve noticed other changes in her since her letters stopped coming to me in Iraq. There’s fire burning in her green eyes—and pain.

The kiss was meant to comfort. But it explodes into searing passion so white-hot, not even the tallest, iciest sweet tea can quench it. I shouldn’t try. She doesn’t want help, especially not mine. But a kiss like that is the beginning of a promise. A promise that won’t stop until I help her find her dream. 

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KNIGHT OF WANDS Teaser

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Author Claudia Burgoa

Author Claudia Burgoa

About the Author
Claudia is an award-winning, international bestselling author. She lives in Colorado working for a small IT company, managing her household filled with three confused dogs, two daughters wrought with fandoms and a son who thinks he’s the boss of the house. And a wonderful husband who shares her love for all things geek. To survive she works continually to find purpose for the voices flitting through her head, plus she consumes high quantities of chocolate to keep the last threads of sanity intact.

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Where to Find Claudia Burgoa
Goodreads | Website | NewsletterFacebook | Twitter | InstagramPinterestAmazon | BookBub | Book&Main

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Giveaway
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Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – KISSED OFF by Tellulah Darling

KISSED OFF Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for KISSED OFF, a stand-alone young adult comedy/mystery/romance, by Tellulah Darling. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

KISSED OFF by Tellulah Darling

KISSED OFF by Tellulah Darling

About the Book
Title: KISSED OFF
Author: Tellulah Darling
Release Date:
 September 18, 2018
Genre: Young Adult Comedy/Mystery/Romance
Link: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo

Synopsis
She’s hell-bent on revenge. 

He’s desperate for adventure.

Now the only question is: does this count as a date?

Sixteen-year-old Reiko Mori’s family has clashed with the Markows in a clandestine search for the famed Lover’s Kiss Ruby, ever since their ancestors killed each other over it centuries ago in Japan. Now, after pulling off a successful museum heist, Reiko’s finally going to be the one who finds the jewel. Even better? She’s just arranged a study date with hot-but-sheltered sculptor Levi Green to work on their English project. Things are looking good.

Until a mysterious third party attacks Reiko and Levi, intent on stealing her clues to the ruby. Until Reiko discovers the Lover’s Kiss is actually in Europe, an ocean away. And until goofy, affable Levi Green turns out to be Levi Markow, mortal enemy number one.

Plan B it is: reluctantly team up with Levi to find the priceless gem before the shadowy and deadly group on the jewel’s trail finds it first.

And if history is gonna repeat itself with the kissing, running, and screwing over, see which one of them comes out on top.

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Excerpt
Levi rubbed his arm, his expression wary. “Reiko Mori, I presume.”

“‘I presume?’” Reiko dropped into a fighter’s crouch. “You’re missing the British accent.”

Levi put his hands up in a pathetic imitation of defensive position. Her cat could have landed a punch through those gaps. “And you’re missing the reality where we aren’t about to have an MMA showdown.”

Reiko smirked but lowered her hands. “Because I’d wipe the floor with your ass.”

“Says Hit-Girl masquerading as the resident shy chick all these years. Nice James Bond alter ego you got going on.”

“I am shy.” She grabbed a dishtowel and whipped it at his head. It fluttered to the counter, far short of its mark.

Levi snorted.

“Being around my sworn enemies tends to knock it out of me. Besides, you’re one to talk, Artsy Boy. Had everyone fooled.” Including stupid me. She pushed him backwards out of the kitchen, shoving him again and again until his back hit the wall next to the front door.

Levi fended off her next blow. The sweep of his arm knocking her hands away left behind a familiar faint hint of rubbing alcohol. She’d watched him use it to remove clay from his hands at school many times. Could she be more pathetically tuned into this guy?

Levi held out his hand, palm up. “Hand over the locket, sweetheart. The real one this time.”

Sweetheart?” She pulled herself up to her full height. “Could you be more stereotypical bad guy?”

“He could have a mustachio to twirl,” Aviva said, from her avid spectator spot hanging over the bannister.

“True,” Reiko said.

Levi rubbed the back of his neck. “I’m not the one blowing kisses before screwing people over. That a move passed down through the generations with you chicks? Think that adds weight to my family being the wronged party here, Mata Hari.”

“Mata…? Argh!” She snatched up the poker.

“Go ahead, brain me.” Levi turned out his pockets in a huff. “No ruby. Just lint. I’d hate you to pointlessly commit murder except, oh yeah. You Moris are bloodthirsty!”

“Better a bloodthirsty Mori than a cowardly, backstabbing Markow!” Reiko jabbed the poker at him.

Levi grabbed the other end, the two of them engaged in a furious tug-of-war for possession. He let go suddenly, sending Reiko staggering back a few steps

Reiko flung open the door and pointed outside. With the poker. “Get. Out.”

Levi held his ground for a minute but must have decided she meant business because he grabbed his shoes. “This isn’t over.”

“You’ll get the locket over my dead body, Lion Cub.”

“Great! Can’t wait to pry it out of your cold, rigor-mortised hands,” he snapped, and stomped out of the house, slamming the door behind him.

“Shit,” said Aviva, “this is really gonna put a crimp in your dating plans.”

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Author Tellulah Darling

Author Tellulah Darling

About the Author
Tellulah Darling
noun

1) YA & New Adult romantic comedy author because her first kiss sucked and she’s compensating.

2) Firm believer that some of the best stories happen when love meets comedy and awkwardness ensues.

3) Sassy minx.

Both a hopeless romantic and total cynic, Tellulah Darling is all about the happily-ever-after, with a huge dose of hilarity along the way. Her romcoms come in a variety of heat levels and flavors; straight up romantic comedy, shaken with Greek mythology or stirred with urban fantasy.

Sassy girls. Swoony boys. What could go wrong?

.Where to Find Tellulah Darling
Goodreads | WebsiteFacebook | Twitter | Google+ | Amazon

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Young Adult Book Review + Giveaway – EVERYTHING UNDER THE SUN by Jessica Redmerski

EVERYTHING UNDER THE SUN Blog Tour

EVERYTHING UNDER THE SUN by Jessica Redmerski

EVERYTHING UNDER THE SUN by Jessica Redmerski

4 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
Thais Fenwick was eleven-years-old when civilization fell, devastated by a virus that killed off the majority of the world’s population. For seven years, Thais and her family lived in a community of survivors deep in the heart of the Appalachian Mountains. But when her town is attacked by raiders, she and her blind sister are taken away to the East-Central Territory where she is destined to live the cruel and unjust kind of life her late mother warned her about.

Atticus Hunt is a troubled soldier in Lexington City who has spent the past seven years trying to conform to the vicious nature of men in a post-apocalyptic society. He knows that in order to survive, he must abandon his morals and his conscience and become like those he is surrounded by. But when he meets Thais, morals and conscience win out over conformity, and he risks his rank and his life to help her. They escape the city and set out together on a long and perilous journey to find safety in Shreveport, Louisiana.

Struggling to survive in a world without electricity, food, shelter, and clean water, Atticus and Thais shed their fear of growing too close, and they fall hopelessly in love. But can love survive in such dark times, or is it fated to die with them?

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My Review
Set after an illness and the events that followed wiped out half the country’s population and civilization as we know it, Thais and her family manage to survive in a rural town in what used to be Kentucky. But lawlessness and greed are everywhere and soon raiders upend an already upended life and send Thais and her sister into the wilderness. They’re soon caught by raiders and taken to Lexington City where women are more prized than gold. They are ranked according to looks and worth and sorted for a life as workers, wives, or whores. There is no equality and no freedom. Thais is desperate to get her sister out, although to where is still huge unknown. But remaining in Lexington City will be a hell all its own.

Atticus is a soldier in Lexington City responsible for sorting Thais and her sister. He’s filled with self-loathing and a desire to change things for the better. His views on the new fallen world are best summed up in his inner thoughts.

But in every good person there is something dark waiting to take the reins. Now here we were, Evelyn and Atticus, a whore and a murderer, succumbing to that dark part of us, because that’s how life was.

Something about Thais sparks a desire in Atticus to battle back against that darkness and maybe redeem his soul. If he can protect her and her sister, maybe he’s not the animal he believes himself to be. When things spiral out of his control, he has no choice but to get Thais out of the city where survival is even more precarious and betrayal is everywhere. Somehow these two find mutual respect in one another that gives way to something more.

Plot
The plot moves at a fast pace from the opening chapter. Scenes are short, and alternating points of view keep suspense high and prevents the story from stalling. However, starting in Chapter 24, the author throws in the alternate point of view in bold parenthesis. This practice is jarring, ripping me from the story each time. These points of view are completely unnecessary to the flow of story, so I began to ignore them when I came across them.

The Characters
While I’m sure this was written as a plot-driven story, the characters steal the show. Atticus is a fascinating, intense character who I felt the author was much more comfortable writing than Thais. Thais is also well-developed, but she comes across as almost two people as the story develops. She’s tough and determined early on, but slowly becomes dependent upon Atticus for her survival, losing some of that grit that made me love her in the beginning.

Top Five Things I Enjoyed About EVERYTHING UNDER THE SUN
1. Atticus. He’s brilliantly crafted.

2. Dystopian. I do love a good fallen civilization.

3. Unhurried love. I love how the author doesn’t rush anything between Thais and Atticus.

4. Character development. Both Thais and Atticus undergo tremendous development throughout the story that is a direct reflection of the circumstances they’ve been put in, making it very organic.

5. Realism. While this is a young adult novel, the author doesn’t sugar coat the realities of life in a post-apocalyptic world, from rape, cannibalism, violence, and prostitution, a dark world is not made less dark just because the characters are young.

Bottom Line
A character-driven dystopian in the best sense of the word with remarkable characters and a solid plot.

Disclaimer
I was provided a copy of this book by the author in exchange for an honest review.

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About the Book
Title: EVERYTHING UNDER THE SUN
Author: Jessica Redmerski
Release Date: August 28, 2017
Pages: 657
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian Romance
Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble

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Author Jessica Redmerski

Author Jessica Redmerski

About the Author
Jessica Redmerski is a New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author and award winner who juggles several genres of fiction.

She also writes as J.A. Redmerski.

 

 

 

 

 

Where to Find Jessica Redmerski
Goodreads | Website | FacebookTwitter

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Giveaway
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Blog Tour – Teaser – BLOOD CURE (Blood Type) by K.A. Linde

BLOOD CURE Release Day

Welcome to the blog tour for BLOOD CURE, the third book in the adult paranormal romance series, Blood Type, by USA Today bestselling author, K.A. Linde. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, and a couple of exclusive teasers from the book.

BLOOD CURE (Blood Type #3) by K.A. Linde

BLOOD CURE (Blood Type #3) by K.A. Linde

About The Book
Title:
BLOOD CURE
Series: Blood Type #3
Author: K.A. Linde
Publisher: Loveswept
Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Links: Goodreads | AmazonAmazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

Synopsis
The stunning conclusion to the Blood Type series finds the world in chaos and turmoil with one final battle left to determine who will survive—humans or vampires.

She had the world on her shoulders. Now she has nothing.

Reyna Carpenter was twenty-one when she became a live-in blood escort for the ruthless and darkly handsome vampire Beckham Anderson. She thought this was just a small price to pay for feeding her brothers back home.

But nothing went as planned. Not even her tumultuous relationship with Beckham. And now she wonders if anything will ever be the same again.

As she finds herself in the midst of a losing rebellion, she and her trusted friends must flee from a city conquered by the vampire elite. With their plans blown to pieces and everything they knew and loved gone, their future hangs in the balance.

Despite all she has lost, Reyna must rise from the ashes, reclaim the life that was stolen—and complete her mission, once and for all.

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BLOOD CURE Teaser 1

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Blood Type Series

Get Caught Up on the Series

Book 1: BLOOD TYPE
Goodreads | AmazonAmazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

Book 2: BLOOD MATCH
Goodreads | AmazonAmazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

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BLOOD CURE Teaser 2

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Author K.A. Linde

Author K.A. Linde

About the Author
K. A. Linde is the USA Today bestselling author of the Avoiding series and the All That Glitters series as well as seven additional novels. She get up as a military brat traveling the United States and even landing for a brief stint in Australia. She has a Masters degree in political science from the University of Georgia and is the current head coach of the Duke University dance team.

An avid traveler, reader, and bargain hunter, K.A. Linda currently lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, with her husband and two super adorable puppies.

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Where to Find K.A. Linde
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | InstagramPinterest

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BLOOD CURE Now Available

 

Release Day – BLOOD CURE (Blood Type) by K.A. Linde

BLOOD CURE Release Day

Today is release day for BLOOD CURE, the third book in the adult paranormal romance series, Blood Type, by USA Today bestselling author, K.A. Linde. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, and a couple of exclusive teasers from the book.

BLOOD CURE (Blood Type #3) by K.A. Linde

BLOOD CURE (Blood Type #3) by K.A. Linde

About The Book
Title:
BLOOD CURE
Series: Blood Type #3
Author: K.A. Linde
Publisher: Loveswept
Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Links: Goodreads | AmazonAmazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

Synopsis
The stunning conclusion to the Blood Type series finds the world in chaos and turmoil with one final battle left to determine who will survive—humans or vampires.

She had the world on her shoulders. Now she has nothing.

Reyna Carpenter was twenty-one when she became a live-in blood escort for the ruthless and darkly handsome vampire Beckham Anderson. She thought this was just a small price to pay for feeding her brothers back home.

But nothing went as planned. Not even her tumultuous relationship with Beckham. And now she wonders if anything will ever be the same again.

As she finds herself in the midst of a losing rebellion, she and her trusted friends must flee from a city conquered by the vampire elite. With their plans blown to pieces and everything they knew and loved gone, their future hangs in the balance.

Despite all she has lost, Reyna must rise from the ashes, reclaim the life that was stolen—and complete her mission, once and for all.

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BLOOD CURE Teaser 1

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Blood Type Series

Get Caught Up on the Series

Book 1: BLOOD TYPE
Goodreads | AmazonAmazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

Book 2: BLOOD MATCH
Goodreads | AmazonAmazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

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BLOOD CURE Teaser 2

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Author K.A. Linde

Author K.A. Linde

About the Author
K. A. Linde is the USA Today bestselling author of the Avoiding series and the All That Glitters series as well as seven additional novels. She get up as a military brat traveling the United States and even landing for a brief stint in Australia. She has a Masters degree in political science from the University of Georgia and is the current head coach of the Duke University dance team.

An avid traveler, reader, and bargain hunter, K.A. Linda currently lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, with her husband and two super adorable puppies.

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Where to Find K.A. Linde
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | InstagramPinterest

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BLOOD CURE Now Available

 

Young Adult Book Review + Giveaway – ECHOES by Alice Reeds

ECHOES Blog Tour

ECHOES by Alice Reeds

ECHOES by Alice Reeds

5 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
“Fast-paced and thrilling. ECHOES is a heart-pounding and addictive love story.” —Mia Siegert, author of Jerkbait

They wake on a deserted island. Fiona and Miles, high school enemies now stranded together. No memory of how they got there. No plan to follow, no hope to hold on to.

Each step forward reveals the mystery behind the forces that brought them here. And soon, the most chilling discovery: something else is on the island with them.

Something that won’t let them leave alive.

Echoes is a thrilling adventure about confronting the impossible, discovering love in the most unexpected places, and, above all, finding hope in the face of the unknown.

 

 

 

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My Review
Two parts LOST, one part THE HUNGER GAMES, ECHOES is intriguing, complex, at times confusing, but a fast, fun, satisfying read. The story opens with a plane crash on a deserted island before flashing back to a trip to Germany seventeen hours earlier. At first, it seems like two separate storylines, and I wasn’t sure which one was real, but it ultimately resolves clearly, so stick with it. High school students Fiona and Miles are recipients of a swanky internship for tech-giant, Briola, in Germany. They’re flown on a private jet and set up in an expensive hotel, but it all falls apart when they take a cab to Briola only to find an empty warehouse with every physical and online trace of Briola wiped from existence.

On the island, Fiona and Miles struggle to survive. Their own relationship is fraught with distrust and animosity. Miles is a trust-fund kid and Fiona is a scholarship recipient at his private academy. They have nothing in common except this internship, which doesn’t make sense to Fiona since she doesn’t see herself as being nearly as qualified as Miles. While the two of them work to remain alive, they have to first learn to trust each other. Surprises and mysteries lurk around every corner, and the more they learn, the more dire their situation becomes.

Plot
The plotting is flawless, with heart-pounding tension, plenty of twists and turns, and unexpected surprises. The relationship development between the two characters is woven through the story so that it’s an extension of the plot rather than the main focus. The author kept me guessing until just the right moment.

The Characters
Both Fiona and Miles are complex characters. Told only from Fiona’s point of view, we see Miles evolve through her eyes. Their assumptions about each other fall away as they’re forced to work together to live another day and get off the island. Fiona is a tough-as-nails kickboxer with a string of trophies to show for it. Miles is a spoiled rich boy with far more to him than just that. Both will learn there is more to themselves and each other than what’s on the surface.

Top Five Things I Loved About ECHOES
1. Twists and turns. I love when I reach the end of a chapter and NEED to turn the page to find out what happens next. Alice Reeds ended nearly every chapter with something that made me not only want, but need, to read on.

2. LOST-ness. The similarities to LOST were an homage to the groundbreaking television show. It both grounded me in the story as well as intrigued me. The parallels begin and end at the setting, though. ECHOES is very much its own story.

3. Fiona. She’s determined and brave, but with a believable vulnerability that suits her character.

4. Miles. He defies stereotype and is a swoonworthy romantic lead.

5. The writing. Author Alice Reeds does  phenomenal job of pulling the reader into the world she’s created so you can breathe in the humid ar, taste the salty air, feel the grit of sand on your skin.

Bottom Line
A perfect blend of terrifyingly thriller elements mixed with a swoony teen romance.

Disclaimer
I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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ECHOES Teaser

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About the Book
Title: ECHOES
Author: Alice Reeds
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Release Date: August 7, 2018
Pages: 400
Genre: Young Adult Romantic Suspense/Thriller
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & NobleiBooks | Kobo | Entangled

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Author Alice Reeds

Author Alice Reeds

About the Author
Alice Reeds was born in a small town in Germany but spent her first eight years in Florida, USA. Later on, she moved back to Europe, where her family moved around a lot. She was raised trilingual and has a basic understanding of Russian, read and spoken. After getting her International Baccalaureate Diploma, Alice is studying English Language and Literature at University. In her free time Alice mostly writes, reads, figure and/or roller skates, or watches countless let’s plays and figure skating videos.

 

 

 

Where to Find Alice Reeds
Goodreads | WebsiteTwitter | Instagram | Amazon | Entangled

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Giveaway
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Dream Cast – SUPERHERO HIGH (Heroes and Zeros Series) by T.H. Hernandez

In case you haven’t heard, SUPERHERO HIGH  is now available exclusively at Amazon. You can read for free with Kindle Unlimited, or buy the ebook for just $3.99! SUPERHERO HIGH is a young adult contemporary/science fiction romance about the teenage offspring of the country’s superheroes. Find out what happens when superpowers and hormones collide. See below for information on the book, buy links, and my ideal cast to play these characters.

SUPERHERO HIGH by T.H. Hernandez

SUPERHERO HIGH by T.H. Hernandez

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited!
Title: SUPERHERO HIGH
Author: T.H. Hernandez
Publisher: Soul Mate Publishing
Release Date: 2018
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary/Science Fiction Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU 

Synopsis
Sixteen-year-old Annarenee Stevens is the sole member of her family without a super power. The only time she feels powerful is in the pool. With her sights set on swimming for U.C. Berkeley, she’s ready to win it all at the State championship and secure her future.

When the government unexpectedly ends the secret Genetically Enhanced Asset (GEA) program, Annarenee is uprooted from Dayton, the only home she’s ever known, and relocated to San Diego with all of the other GEA families. Queen of her public school, Annarenee is just another zero at Superhero High, a school without any sports teams.

With the end of the program, her hero older brother now needs a college education, too, meaning the only way Annarenee is getting into Berkeley is on a scholarship. Her dream is slipping through her fingers, no matter how tightly she clings to it. To make matters worse, super hot superhero, Ren Gonzalez, is paying too much attention to her. The kind of attention that has Ren’s ex-girlfriend intent on making Annarenee’s life even more miserable.

But when heroes begin disappearing, zeros and heroes will be forced to team up in order to solve the mystery. If they don’t kill each other first.

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Superhero High Dream Cast

Blog Tour – Guest Post + Giveaway – STRICKEN by C.K. Kelly Martin

STRICKEN Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for STRICKEN, a stand-alone middle grade/young adult dystopian adventure with a scifi twist, by C.K. Kelly Martin. See below for information the book, buy links, an exclusive guest post by the author, and details on her giveaway.

STRICKEN by C.K. Kelly Martin

STRICKEN by C.K. Kelly Martin

About the Book
Title: STRICKEN
Author: C.K. Kelly Martin
Publisher: CBD
Release Date: January 27, 2018
Genre: Middle Grade/Young Adult Dystopian Adventure/SciFi
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | !ndigo | BAM! | IndieBound | The Book Depository

Synopsis
Naomi doesn’t expect anything unusual from her annual family trip to visit her grandparents in Ireland. What she expects is to celebrate her thirteenth birthday, hang out with her friends Ciara and Shehan, and deal with her gran’s Alzheimer’s. What she finds is a country hit by an unexpected virus that rapidly infects the majority of the Irish population over the age of twenty-one.

Amnestic-Delirium Syndrome (ADS) starts off with memory loss, but the virus soon turns its victims aggravated, blank, or violent. Naomi and her friends must survive on their own, without lucid adults, cut off from the rest of the world, until a cure is found.

But there are whispers that ADS is not terrestrial, and soon Naomi and her friends learn the frightening truth: we are not alone.

 

 

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Guest Post – Cover Love
Seeing a new book cover for the first time is always exciting for an author– it’s a visual representation of your work that will (hopefully!) have an immediate impact on whoever sees it.  Stricken is my first middle grade book and my first book cover that wasn’t a photograph. Those things alone made me giddy. An original cover illustration!

The first I saw of the Stricken cover art was a black and white sketch that I instantly fell head over heels in love with. Canadian visual artist Nick Craine adapted Bruce McDonald’s, Dance Me Outside and Hard Core Logo into graphic novels and his illustrations have appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The New Republic.

To me it’s no small thing that Nick Craine also designed the best book cover I’ve ever had. I’m in absolute awe of main character Naomi’s defiant posture atop an overturned car. Seeing Dublin’s main thoroughfare, O’Connell Street (a place central to the Easter Rising of 1916 and the Irish Civil War of 1922) pictured behind her gives me a thrill every time I see Stricken. If you ever go to Dublin, there’s no way you’ll visit the place without seeing O’Connell Street and O’Connell Bridge, which spans the River Liffey. The Stricken cover vividly portrays more than a familiar city street though; it shows a place in trouble, a place where life has been turned upside down.  It makes me want to snatch up the book and find out what happens within the pages, even though I’ve already read it. It’s a cover that sets up delicious expectations, which I dearly hope I meet.

I was twenty-one the first time I landed in Dublin, but there was something about it that nearly instantly felt like home. That makes this book and its fabulous cover very special to me.   I can’t thank Nick Craine enough.

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Author C.K. Kelly Martin

Author C.K. Kelly Martin

About the Author
Long before I was an author I was a fan of books about Winnie the Pooh, Babar, Madeline, Anne Shirley and anything by Judy Blume. Throughout high school my favourite class was English. No surprise, then, that most of my time spent at York University in Toronto was as an English major—not the traditional way to graduate with a B.A. (Hons) in film studies but a fine way to get a general arts education.

After getting my film studies degree I headed for Dublin, Ireland and spent the majority of the nineties there in forgettable jobs meeting unforgettable people and enjoying the buzz. I always believed I’d get around to writing in earnest eventually, and I began writing my first novel in a flat in Dublin and finished it in a Toronto suburb. By then I’d discovered that fiction about young people felt the freshest and most exciting to me. You have most of your life to be an adult but you only grow up once.

Currently residing near Toronto with my Dub husband, I’m an aunt to twenty-one nieces and nephews, and a great-aunt to two great-nephews. I became an Irish citizen in 2001 and continue to visit Dublin as often as I can while working on novels about young people.

My first young adult book, I Know It’s Over, came out with Random House in September 2008, and was followed by One Lonely Degree, The Lighter Side of Life and Death, My Beating Teenage Heart and sci-fi thriller Yesterday. I released Yesterday’s sequel, Tomorrow, in 2013 and put out my first adult novel, Come See About Me, as an ebook in June 2012. My most recent contemporary YA books, The Sweetest Thing You Can Sing and Delicate, were published by Cormorant Books’ Dancing Cat Books imprint in 2014 and 2015.

Where to Find C.K. Kelly Martin
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Giveaway
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Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – BEFORE DAWN by Elizabeth Arroyo

BEFORE DAWN Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for BEFORE DAWN, a stand-alone young adult science fiction dystopian adventure by Elizabeth Arroyo. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

BEFORE DAWN by Elizabeth Arroyo

BEFORE DAWN by Elizabeth Arroyo

About the Book
Title:
BEFORE DAWN
Author: Elizabeth Arroyo
Release Date: June 12, 2018
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction/Dystopian/Adventure
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Amazon FR | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Smashwords

Synopsis
Survival rule number one: eat before being hunted.

In a world infected by violent hybrids, survival comes with its own set of rules. Sixteen-year-old Zoe is an expert at breaking them.

While Zoe has abilities she cannot explain, just getting through another day without being killed is a challenge. She has survived since her mother’s murder with help from an unexpected ally, Morph.

Morph is part of the Arcane, an elite force of teenagers from an Alliance of space stations. After the Arcane are destroyed in an explosion, only Morph and his brother survive. They are sent on a new mission to capture a dangerous hybrid.

Morph is torn between duty and his attraction to Zoe. With threats to the planet from above, Morph knows Zoe’s chances are limited. Trying to save her could be a betrayal to the Alliance.

When Zoe recovers memories of her mother’s death that point straight to the Arcane, she realizes Morph might be the real enemy.

As more mysteries are brought to light, telling friends from foes becomes difficult. For Morph and Zoe, the world is more dangerous than ever. And trusting each other is the key to them living to see another day.

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Excerpt #2
Morph wanted to apologize for leaving her and let her know that Shyla had him by his manhood. He wanted to apologize for Jace. Recently, she’d allowed her emotions to dominate her actions. She’d snap whenever he tried to talk some sense into her. Stubborn to the core. He couldn’t bring out the words before she pissed him off.

Like now.

Slinging the bag over her shoulder, she headed for the exit.

“Don’t,” he warned. “Stone’s pulling sentry duty.” If Stone detected movement it would send a highly volatile cylinder to the perpetrator and exterminate them. Only it probably wouldn’t kill Zoe. It’d destroy itself in the process and he liked the bot.

“Call it off,” she challenged. Her hand already on the doorknob.

“Just relax,” he ordered, but that only sent her edging into the drop off.

“Call it off. It’s the only one you have left.” She turned to meet his eyes and let out a breath just before she opened the door.

Cursing, he pushed the off button on his wristband to keep the bot from committing suicide. “Stay here,” he ordered Glam and sprinted after Zoe.

Being depleted of energy didn’t stop her from charging down the seven flights of stairs. She rushed outside, into the dawn, and abruptly stopped. He slammed into her and quickly drew her into his protective embrace before she lost her balance. This close to her, he lost his words.

She gently pushed him away. Her amber colored eyes did something to him he never wanted to forget. It made him whole.

“Why did you even come back?” she whispered.

He cupped her cheek and she leaned into his touch. All the reasons why he couldn’t tell her how he felt, why he couldn’t wrap her in his arms and kiss her, flooded to the surface. Attachments would get him killed. She was a hybridhe killed her kind. He needed to take her to Mecca, to be tested. She, like Archer, seemed to be a new version of hybrid. She could never join him on the Phoenix, and he had to go back. It was the only way to save Jace. It’d be wrong to explore their feelings when he knew how it would all end.

“I have to go back,” he whispered. He didn’t have to tell her what he meant. She knew. It was written all over her face. She stiffened and pulled away. He almost wanted her to argue with him, to challenge him to stay. She didn’t. She never did. Instead, she sucked in a breath and walked back inside.

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Author Elizabeth Arroyo

Author Elizabeth Arroyo

About the Author
Born and raised in Chicago and the youngest of five, Elizabeth spent most of her younger years as an avid reader with a wild imagination which led her to write her first manuscript at the age of fourteen.

Influenced by the gamers in her household and her love of action adventure, Elizabeth delved into the realm of science fiction and wrote her first full-length science fiction/dystopian YA novel—Before Dawn—acquired by Ellysian Press in 2016.

Elizabeth is the author of the Second Sign and the Second Shadow, a dark YA paranormal romance series, (Sapphire Star Publishing, 2013), and Darkness, a YA paranormal thriller, (Indie-Published, 2014). She has a short story published with SQ Magazine, and advice on her writing journey can be found in The Write Path: A Compilation of Letters, (Amazon Digital Services, Inc.).

Elizabeth enjoys spending time with her family, listening to music, and binge watching her favorite shows.

You can reach Elizabeth at her website www.elizabetharroyo.com, Twitter, and Facebook..

Where to find Elizabeth Arroyo
Goodreads | Website | FacebookTwitter

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Giveaway
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Book Blitz – BENEATH THE EARTH by H.S. Stone

BENEATH THE EARTH Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for BENEATH THE EARTH, a stand-alone young adult horror/suspense by H.S. Stone. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt and details on his giveaway.

BENEATH THE EARTH by H.S. Stone

BENEATH THE EARTH by H.S. Stone

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: BENEATH THE EARTH
Author: H.S. Stone
Release Date: May 10, 2018
Genre:
 Young Adult Horror/Suspense
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
Laura and her classmates have been looking forward to their senior camping trip for weeks. Three days on an island paradise, away from school and their parents. What more could they ask for?

The camping trip starts out well enough. The island is scenic and just the kind of escape to nature that Laura had hoped for. However, cracks soon begin to appear in her plans. Her boyfriend ditches her to hang out with his friends. She has to share a room with one of the teachers. But those are the least of her worries.

A student disappears, and no one can find him. Soon, Laura and the other students realize that the camping trip is anything but a dream vacation. There’s something else on the island. Something large and frightening. Something that lurks unseen beneath the earth. Something that welcomes the presence of the students because they will satisfy its appetite.

 

 

 

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Excerpt:
All of the students and teachers started from the spot of Brandon’s disappearance and spread out. We hoped that by covering every direction that radiated from the origin point, there’d be no chance of missing him.

Initially, the ground where we searched was trampled, both from our large group and from Mr. Messick’s exploration last night. We walked over broken branches and flattened grass. We imitated the park ranger’s technique of stabbing the ground with sticks, hoping to uncover hidden holes that were now covered up. However, we found no hints as to where Brandon could have disappeared to.

Heather, Katie, and I walked shoulder to shoulder. As the distance between us and the neighboring search parties grew, we also spaced ourselves farther apart. We slowed down our pace, not wanting to miss a potential nook or cranny that could hide Brandon’s location.

If I were paying attention to the island’s sounds, I would have noticed that the usual chirping of birds had faded. There was only the crunch of the ground beneath our feet. My eyes swept the forest floor in front of me, and my focus was strictly on looking for my missing classmate.

Our first hint of danger came when we heard a scream behind us. The three of us turned around, frozen in our tracks.

“What was that?” Katie asked.

The scream pierced the quiet of the forest again. We pinpointed the direction it came from and hurried toward the sound.

We were almost back to the search’s starting point when a wave of students ran toward us. They motioned for us to go back in the direction from where we had come. 

“Run!”

We didn’t ask any questions. We turned around and ran as fast as we could in the opposite direction. I had no idea what we were running from, but from the terror in the voice that sent us fleeing, I wasn’t going to stand around and ask questions.

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Author H.S. Stone

Author H.S. Stone

About the Author
Even before he could read, H.S. Stone wanted to write a book. Fascinated by the stories that seemed to leap from his kindergarten teacher’s books, he went home and wrote his own book, with illustrations and bound by staples. Of course, since he didn’t know how to read or write yet, the book was full of gibberish.

Undaunted, H.S. eventually mastered the ABC’s and continued to write throughout his grade school years, adolescence, and into adulthood. Despite earning a degree and working in a field not related to writing, he continued to pursue his writing passion.

H.S. Stone’s publications include novels aimed at Young Adult and Middle Grade readers as well as several short stories. He currently lives with his family in the San Francisco Bay Area..

Where to find Mika Lane
Goodreads Website | Facebook Twitter | Amazon

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Giveaway
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Blog Tour – Book Review + Giveaway – REALITY GOLD (Shifting Reality Collection) by Tiffany Brooks

REALITY GOLD Blog Tour

REALITY GOLD (Shifting Reality Collection #1) by Tiffany Brooks

REALITY GOLD (Shifting Reality Collection #1) by Tiffany Brooks

5 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
High school senior Riley Ozaki is desperate to change her reality after an avalanche of Internet shaming ruined her life. With her reputation and self-esteem at rock bottom thanks to cyberbullying, Riley needs to do something drastic to repair her social standing—which is why she decided to try out for a reality TV show. Suddenly, she’s dropping onto a deserted tropical island with nineteen other teens for a Survivor-style competition that she hopes will be her redemption.

With a cast of vivid characters who will stop at nothing to win the show, a cursed island setting, and a priceless treasure waiting to be discovered, Reality Gold pitches readers right into scheming web of lies, love, and betrayal. This novel is a fast-paced journey where allies may not be who they say they are, and legends abound. Riley must embrace all of life’s realities, including loss and deceit, in order to discover who she truly is.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My Review
Wow, wow, wow! What a ride!! REALITY GOLD is a non-stop young adult adventure with fascinating characters, intrigue, secrets, lies, and plot twist after plot twist that made it impossible to put down. Riley Ozaki is a down-on-her-luck teen, whose misfortune is of her own making. When she has the opportunity to rebrand herself after internet infamy, she jumps at it. The opportunity is in the form of a reality TV show, called Reality Gold — a Survivor-style teen-centered show set on a South American island that just happens to be the rumored home to a long-ago buried treasure. Riley has roots on the island; her own godfather, Miles, was killed while searching for the treasure recently and Riley herself accompanied him on one of his expeditions just two years prior.

But being one of twenty kids on an island, surrounded by cameras, may not be what Riley needs. Forging friendships under constant surveillance is tough for a girl who currently has no friends. With everyone competing for the same prize and the chance to maybe hunt for the treasure while they’re there, trust is a valuable commodity that is as hard to come by as the elusive buried gold. When one mishap follows another, cast and crew alike begin to wonder if the rumored island curse is true.

Plot
Outstandingly plotted, this story moves. I loved the attention to detail throughout the story and not just with settings; everything from their surroundings, to the clothes they wear, to micro expressions bring the reader deep into the story. But they also serve as expert foreshadowing of every devious twist and turn the author throws at us.

The Characters
LOVE the characters. I was up and down on Riley throughout. She’d win my loyalty, then do something stupid and make me wonder about her. At least up until the end when she redeems herself as only Riley can. The rest of the cast is wonderful. Perfect. Seen from Riley’s perspective, the reader doesn’t know who to trust either. I had all of my ideas about what was really going on turned upside down so many times, I gave up trying to figure it all out.

Top Five Things I Loved About REALITY GOLD
1. Reality TV. While not one of my favorite things to watch, although I did watch several seasons of Survivor when it first came out, it may be one of my favorite things to read. The behind-the-scenes wrangling is so much more interesting that what shows up on screen.

2. Riley. She was both annoyingly inconsistent and lovably confused about who she was and who she wanted to be.

3. Treasure hunting. Maps, and ciphers, and markers, oh my!

4. Plot twists. So many twists I nearly got dizzy, but each one was perfectly timed, completely unpredictable, and hella fun!

5. Maren. Riley’s teammate and frenemy was one of the most complex characters and I still don’t know enough about her. I hope we get more of her in the next book in the trilogy.

Bottom Line
A rollercoaster ride of action with a mystery tied up with a simple romantic bow. Highly recommend!

Disclaimer
I was provided with a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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About the Book
Title: REALITY GOLD
Series: Shifting Reality Collection #1
Author: Tiffany Brooks
Publisher: Dunemere Books
Release Date: May 22, 2018
Pages: 391
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary/Adventure
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble

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Author Tiffany Brooks

Author Tiffany Brooks

About the Author
Tiffany Brooks lives in San Francisco with her family and a bunch of pets, who luckily don’t object to being featured on her Instagram. The best thing about living on the west coast is she can find out what happens on Game of Thrones three hours ahead of air time. That, plus not having winter weather, means she’ll never move back east, although that doesn’t stop her New England family from asking when she’ll be moving “back home” to NYC or Connecticut. Reality Gold, her debut novel, kicks off the Shifting Reality Collection, a YA trilogy..

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Where to find Tiffany Brooks
Goodreads Website | Facebook Twitter | Instagram

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Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Release Day – BLOOD TYPE (Blood Type) by K.A. Linde

BLOOD TYPE Now Available

Today is release day for BLOOD TYPE, the first book in the adult paranormal romance series, Blood Type, by USA Today bestselling author, K.A. Linde. See below for information on the book, buy links, and a couple of exclusive teasers from the book.

BLOOD TYPE (Blood Type #1) by K.A. Linde

BLOOD TYPE (Blood Type #1) by K.A. Linde

About The Book
Title:
BLOOD TYPE
Series: Blood Type #1
Author: K.A. Linde
Publisher: Loveswept
Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance
Release Date: April 24, 2018
Links: Goodreads | AmazonAmazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

Synopsis
A startling new vision of paranormal romance: When a human ventures into the world of vampires—a decadent milieu of blood-bonds and betrayal—she discovers that not all is what it seems.

For Reyna Carpenter, giving up her body isn’t a choice. It’s survival.

In a civilization laid waste by poverty and desperation, Reyna accepts a high-paying position with the wealthy and hungry vampire elite. Her new job is as the live-in blood escort for the intimidating, demanding, and devilishly handsome Beckham Anderson. He’s everything she expected from a vampire, except for one thing—he won’t feed off her.

Reyna soon discovers that behind Beckham’s brooding, wicked façade lies a unique and complex man. And that, in a dark and divided world, she is more valuable than she ever would have believed.

For with each passing night, Reyna can’t shake the sensation that it’s Beckham who’s afraid of her.

Note: Reyna and Beckham’s story continues in Blood Match.

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BLOOD TYPE Teaser 1

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Excerpt
That was the moment Beckham appeared in the doorway like a storm cloud.

Reyna straightened in her seat at the expression on his face. He walked across the room like a tightly coiled spring ready to explode.

“Ah Beckham, there you are,” Harrington said.

“Excuse me, William. I need to speak with Reyna. Alone.”

She hastened out of her seat and followed him around the corner. He tugged her straight through the kitchens, out the back door, down a corridor, and into a dead end. Then her back was slammed against the brick wall. His fist connected with the wall behind her, and she felt the wall shudder. Debris floated onto her shoulders.

“You left,” he growled.

“I . . .”

“No.” He pressed his finger to her lips roughly. She stopped breathing and just stared up into his eyes as dark as night. Her body trembled under the feral stare. “You left without me.”

The silence was weighted. All she could do was sit with their bodies nearly touching. His finger on her mouth. Her mind wandering to hellacious places.

“You are my subject. Can you imagine what it was like when I found you missing? When you turned up with three of my kind?” She shook her head minutely. He bared his teeth to her, and she shrank back. “These are meant to drink your blood. To drink you dry until there is nothing left of your body but a dry corpse. We are killers. We don’t hesitate. Just because we’re wearing suits and seem more like you . . . does not mean we are like you. We are not like you. They especially are not like you. The only way you get to the top of Visage is to be fucking ruthless, Reyna. Do you understand?”

“You’re . . . scaring me,” she whispered.

“Good.”

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Author K.A. Linde

Author K.A. Linde

About the Author
K. A. Linde is the USA Today bestselling author of the Avoiding series and the All That Glitters series as well as seven additional novels. She get up as a military brat traveling the United States and even landing for a brief stint in Australia. She has a Masters degree in political science from the University of Georgia and is the current head coach of the Duke University dance team.

An avid traveler, reader, and bargain hunter, K.A. Linda currently lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, with her husband and two super adorable puppies.

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Where to Find K.A. Linde
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | InstagramPinterest

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BLOOD TYPE Teaser 2

 

Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – RILEY’S WAR – PHASE 1 by Kiersten Jackson

RILEY'S WAR - PHASE 1 Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for RILEY’S WAR – PHASE 1, the first book in the young adult science fiction/LGBTQ+ adventure series, by Kiersten Jackson. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

RILEY'S WAR - PHASE 1 by Kiersten Jackson

RILEY’S WAR – PHASE 1 (Riley’s War #1) by Kiersten Jackson

About the Book
Title: RILEY’S WAR – PHASE 1 by
Series: Riley’s War #1
Author: Kiersten Jackson
Release Date: December 4, 2017
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction/LGBTQ Adventure
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
The​ ​year’s​ ​2027.

Humanity​ ​has​ ​split​ ​into​ ​two​ ​halves:​ ​First​ ​World,​ ​the​ ​floating​ ​plate​ ​above​ ​that​ ​covers​ ​⅓​ ​of​ ​the planet​ ​built​ ​with​ ​futuristic​ ​technology​ ​and​ ​home​ ​to​ ​56​ ​million​ ​First​ ​Class​ ​citizens,​and Second World,​ ​the​ ​Original​ ​Earth​ ​below​ ​running​ ​to​ ​ruin​ ​from​ ​war,​ ​famine,​ ​and​ ​poverty.

Recruited​ ​by​ ​Second​ ​World​ ​from​ ​jail,​ ​Jukebox​ ​is​ ​taken​ ​to​ ​their​ ​Base,​ ​discovering​ ​files​ ​with dragons,​ ​mythical​ ​shape​ ​shifting​ ​snakes​ ​from​ ​China—even​ ​the​ ​ghost​ ​from​ ​his​ ​past.​ ​And​ ​when the​ ​dragons​ ​actually​ ​show​ ​up,​ ​threatening​ ​to​ ​destroy​ ​humanity​ ​within​ ​three​ ​days,​ ​it​ ​doesn’t​ ​make it​ ​any​ ​better.​ ​Not​ ​even​ ​the​ ​androids​ ​and​ ​cyborgs​ ​that​ ​are​ ​sent​ ​to​ ​kill​ ​him​ ​on​ ​an​ everyday​ ​basis. Maybe​ ​it’s​ ​because​ ​they’re​ ​looking​ ​for​ ​his​ ​dad​ ​that​ ​holds​ ​all​ ​the​ ​original​ ​secrets​ ​and​ ​truths behind​ ​their​ ​world’s​ ​destruction,​ ​like​ ​him.

And​ ​when​ ​a​ ​comet​ ​is​ ​learned​ ​to​ ​hit​ ​both​ ​worlds​ ​soon,​ ​Jukebox​ ​is​ ​faced​ ​with​ ​the​ ​decision​ ​of fighting​ ​for​ ​his​ ​race​ ​or​ ​himself​ ​when​ ​the​ ​meteor​ ​is​ ​established​ ​to​ ​contain​ ​a​ ​power that​ ​could grant​ ​mankind​ ​renewed​ ​life,​ ​or​ ​instantaneous​ ​death—​ ​​his​​ ​power.​ ​Both​ ​worlds​ ​are​ ​at​ ​a​ ​clash​ ​to get​ ​to​ ​him​ ​and​ ​the​ ​comet​ ​once​ ​learning​ ​Jukebox​ ​can​ ​stop​ ​it—on​ ​the​ ​price​ ​of​ ​​dying,​​ ​deeming​ ​this battle​ ​as​ ​Second​ ​War—Riley’s​ ​War.​ ​And​ ​Jukebox​ ​doesn’t​ ​even​ ​want​ ​to​ ​​stop​​ ​it.

RILEY’S​ ​WAR:​ ​PHASE​ ​1​ ​is​ ​a​ ​powerful​ ​explosive​ ​sci-fi​ ​YA​ ​fantasy​ ​and​ ​action/adventure complete​ ​at​ ​38,600​ ​words​ ​with​ ​undeniable​ ​series​ ​potential​ ​that​ ​would​ ​appeal​ ​to​ ​fans​ ​of​ ​diverse POC with​ LGBTQIA+ ​main​ ​characters​ ​and​ ​supporting​ ​cast.

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Excerpt #1
I smirked. Obsidian froze, then began to grin, letting me go. “I like your style.” he leered. “You’re a nice kid. Nice hair. What’s your name?”

“Jukebox.”

“Seriously?”

“Seriously.”

“Huh.” He nodded his head a couple times, placing his hand underneath his chin. He whipped his head around to face me. “Seriously?”

“Seriously.” I answered.

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About the Author
Kiersten Jackson is an African-American author born in the United States, from Florida. She is very active in BLACKLIVESMATTER and LGBTQIA+. She currently likes to sleep, eat, and nap as long as she can. Her talents include drawing, writing, and being the Best at what she does. Greatest of All Time. Forever...

Where to Find Kiersten Jackson
Goodreads | Website

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Giveaway
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