Welcome to the book blitz for MARRYING AN ALIEN POP STAR, the third book in the adult scifi romantic comedy series, Alien Pop Star, by Kendra L. Saunders. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
MARRYING AN ALIEN POP STAR (Alien Pop Star #3) by Kendra L. Saunders
Synopsis Daisy Kirkwood and her best friend Kammie have adjusted to life on an alien planet pretty well, all things considered. And thanks to Daisy’s alien pop star boyfriend, Griffin Valentino, she has plenty of sexy new experiences to keep her busy. But it’s not possible to take a massive music nerd away from her home planet and not expect her to pine for a concert or a record store at least in once in a while.
Heading back to Earth with Griffin and his best friend Dev for a brief but much-needed visit, the girls want nothing more than to catch up on the underground music scene of New York City. Unfortunately, thanks to Griffin’s less-than-stellar space traveling skills, they accidentally pick up a hitchhiker. Or three hundred. Their many-legged stowaway beasties take up residence in the darkest, creepiest corners of Manhattan, leaving the gang no choice but to experience a very different underground than they bargained for.
Giant alien bugs aside, Griffin has some epic plans of his own for their trip, plans that involve a concert, an album… and the most outrageous marriage proposal that Earth has ever seen.
Excerpt #1 Somehow, every time I return to Earth, the awful smells that make up New York City seem even more welcome to my nose. A woman can only be without the olfactory cocktail of garbage, cheap coffee, morning cigarettes, and desperate hangovers for so long.
Finally, finally, here Griffin, Dev and I are, setting foot in the East Village with nothing but our clothes, one bag, and a bunch of semi-counterfeited money. Okay, not semi-counterfeited. Completely counterfeited. Griffin and Dev can create stacks of fake Earth currencies with almost no effort, which is disconcerting if I think about it for too long. I try not think about it at all, actually.
Griffin tips himself over a filthy looking garbage can and throws up for all he’s worth. I wander away a little and stare at taxis rolling by, willing my own stomach to calm down.
I’ve ‘traveled’ through space several times with Griffin, but it really doesn’t make it any easier, evidenced by my stomach’s gleeful attempt to empty everything inside it as soon as we land at our destination. Usually, I can bully my stomach into calming down before anything actually manages to come up, but the same can’t be said for Griffin. Somehow, he’s a million times worse at traveling through space than I am, despite his people’s advanced capabilities.
And see, I love him, and aspire to comfort him when he’s feeling sad or sick, but I know better than to get too close at a time like this. Besides, that’s exactly what Griffin’s best friend Dev is for.
Aforementioned best friend makes a beeline for Griffin, sidling up to him and patting him on the back. “It’s alright,” he says, in the special soothing voice he uses for Griffin in times of stomach disaster. “Just breathe through your nose, Griff. Pretend you’re on a horizon. Everything is still. Nothing moves. You’re weightless and blissful.”
Griffin raises his head and grumbles something about not feeling very blissful, and then lurches forward to vomit again.
Where Griffin is dark haired and pale and pointy, Dev’s handsomely golden in every respect. His skin always looks freshly sun-kissed, and his big gray eyes seem rested even when he hasn’t slept. He’s a calming force on everyone he comes into contact with, even his manic best friend. “Find your calm, Griff. You’re alright. You’re weightless and–”
“I’m not alright!” Griffin replies, flailing his hands around while still leaned fully over the bin.
Dev pats Griffin on the back. “I’m proud of you, Griff. You programmed our trip this time, and you didn’t kill any of us.”
His praise is justified, because this is actually kind of a big deal. Griffin is infamously terrible at travel, and has sent himself to a few dangerous places by accident over the years. Of course, reminding him of this fact never goes over well, and today is no exception. He raises his head again to pin Dev with a nasty look.
“I happen to be…” he starts to say, and then takes a long pause, “somewhat better at traveling than I used to be, thank you very much.” With that, he pukes again, and Dev bites his lower lip to keep from smiling.
About the Author Kendra L. Saunders is a time-and-space traveling fashionista author who writes books about magical, dark-haired men, interviews famous people, and suggests way too many bands to you via whatever social media platform she can get her hands on. She writes with good humor because humor is the best weapon for a girl who can’t learn karate (or ballroom dancing).
She is the author of DATING AN ALIEN POP STAR, the magic realism novel INANIMATE OBJECTS, dark comedy DEATH AND MR. RIGHT, the upcoming romance THE UNLOVE SPELL, and has conducted interviews with NYT Bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout, goth rocker Aurelio Voltaire, and Project Runway winners Dmitry Sholokhov and Michelle Lesniak Franklin among many, many others.
Welcome to the book blitz for BELIEVE IN MY HEART, a stand-alone holiday romance in the adult contemporary romance series, Tangled Hearts, by Maria K. Alexander. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
BELIEVE IN MY HEART (Tangled Hearts #4) by Maria K. Alexander
Synopsis Culinary arts student, Hope Mastriano, is down on her luck. Homeless on Thanksgiving Day, she’s caught trying to break into her cousin’s apartment by her sexy boss and lifelong secret crush.
Since getting dumped seven months ago, head chef Vinnie DiFrancesco has been in a frustrating holding pattern. He returns relaxed from a retreat, but his life is sent into a tailspin when he offers Hope, the event coordinator at his family’s trattoria, temporary housing.
With the trattoria’s traditional Italian Christmas Eve charity dinner slated to be featured on a local TV segment and things heating up in his apartment, the two must set aside their different visions to make the event a success. When a computer glitch threatens their plans, Hope proposes a risky solution. Vinnie must believe in Hope and his heart in order to secure the future of the restaurant and make it a Christmas to remember.
Besides, their arrangement is only for one week. Then they’ll be continents apart again, and life will go on. Right?
Excerpt #3 Now, all Vinnie wanted was to be able to take the business they put love, sweat, and tears into and continue its success. To make them proud and prove that, while he may only be a small-time chef, he was the best small-time chef in the tri-state area. His family had crowned him with that title, but having reviews to support that claim would do a lot for the reputation of the trattoria as well as Vinnie’s own self-esteem.
“And maybe after the charity dinner, we’ll make Philadelphia magazine’s list of the top fifty restaurants,” Vinnie said.
“From your lips to God’s ears,” his mother said.
As he made his way through the group, he noticed Hope wasn’t among them. He stopped Susie as she started to pass him. “Where’d Hope go?”
“She got a message on her phone and headed to the back in a panic.”
Vinnie wove his way to the office where he found Hope on the computer, fingers typing and clicking with a frightening speed. In the background, he heard the ring of the phone as all three lines were lit. “What’s up?”
She answered without losing momentum. “The server that hosts the trattoria’s website crashed.”
“Well, on the plus side, lots of people saw the Good Morning Philadelphia spot. Only now our phone lines are jammed, and there are more people trying to hit our website than the server can handle.”
“Can you fix it?”
“I’m trying. I’m having an online chat with someone from the hosting site, and hopefully what I’ve done will work, but we have a bigger issue, Vin.”
“We’ve now booked more reservations for the charity auction than we can accommodate.”
Author Maria K. Alexander
About the Author A romantic at heart, Maria K. Alexander spent hours as a young girl getting lost in and wishing to be one of the heroines in the stories she read. Books gave her the ability to go to another world where she loved meeting new characters, learning about their problems, and watching them fall in love.
Maria is an award-winning author of contemporary romance. When not writing, Maria loves to read, bake, downhill ski, visit the beach, and watch romantic comedies. Maria lives in New Jersey with her husband and children, and writes in her “spare” time between juggling a full-time job and her kids’ busy schedules.
Welcome to the book blitz for ENCHANT, the first book in the young adult fantasy romance series, The Enchanted, by Micalea Smeltzer. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive Teaser, and details on her giveaway.
Synopsis Mara Pryce never imagined that her life was anything but normal and then a strange gray-eyed young man appears at her graduation. When he vanishes without a trace, she’s convinced he’s a figment of her imagination. Then he appears again and shatters her whole world.
Mara is an enchanter, part of an ancient line of Wiccan power, and a war is raging—one of good and evil—between the Enchanted and the Iniquitous.
The Iniquitous want her dead and it’s Theodore’s job as her protector to keep her safe.
When Mara and Theodore arrive at a safe house, where Mara will remain hidden while learning about her powers, they find that the real threat might be a little closer to home than they want to believe.
Author Micalea Smeltzer
About the Author Hi. I’m Micalea. Ma-call-e-uh. Weird name, I know. My mom must’ve known I was going to be odd even in the womb. I’ve written a lot of books. Like a lot. Don’t ask me how many, I don’t remember at this point. I have an unhealthy addiction to Diet Coke but I can’t seem to break the habit. I listen to way too much music and hedgehogs have taken over my life. Crazy is the word that best sums up my life, but it’s the good kind of crazy and I wouldn’t change it for anything.
Welcome to the book blitz for LOVE THE WINE YOU’RE WITH Book Blitz, the second book in the adult romantic comedy series, Vineyard Pleasures, by Brooke E. Wayne. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
LOVE THE WINE YOU’RE WITH (Vineyard Pleasures #2) by Brooke E. Wayne
About the Book
Title: LOVE THE WINE YOU’RE WITH Series: Vineyard Pleasures #2 Author: Brooke E. Wayne Release Date: November 1, 2017 Genre: Adult Romantic Comedy Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU
Synopsis SPRINKLE an emotionally unavailable woman, a lovelorn man, and some delicious chemistry into the middle of the holidays then candy coat it with a whole lotta passion when a friends-with-benefits arrangement turns a vacation into an unexpected journey.
Blanca Grazia, queen of calm, has it all under control. Headstrong. Self-reliant. Determined. She thrives on an intriguing challenge. So, when Blanca’s bestie, Maxine Novaline, begs her to distract Maxie’s boyfriend’s cousin while he’s visiting them in Napa Valley, California, Blanca is all about stepping it up for her BFF. Hot French guy? Yes, please.
All Blanca plans on doing is the—ehem—favor. Then she’ll just friend-zone Julien L’Angevin’s butt all the way back home to France where he belongs. … Until that wrecking ball of a man decides to cash in on a favor of his own.
All Julien wants is another opportunity to see what this wild, pint-sized, fireball of independence is actually made of. Sugar? Spice? Everything nice? Counting on Blanca’s wanderlust for worldly adventures, Julien invites her to his home in Champagne for Christmas. A traveling opportunity the American beauty can’t resist. So what if they decide to add a little pinch of friends-with-benefits to the mix after they come face to face once more and realize that their physical chemistry can’t be denied?
Besides, their arrangement is only for one week. Then they’ll be continents apart again, and life will go on. Right?
LOVE THE WINE YOU’RE WITH is about a young woman bent on staying single while falling in love one scintillating wine tasting at a time.
***This novel is a snarky, passionate, sexy, funny, feel-good CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE-ROMANTIC COMEDY full of twists and turns that will have you laughing out loud from start to finish. Grab a glass of Champagne, kick up your stilettos, and enjoy the journey.***
Whine with Cheese (Vineyard Pleasures Series, #1) Love the Wine You’re With (Vineyard Pleasures Series, #2)
Although, Love the Wine You’re With is the second book in the Vineyard Pleasures Series, it can be read as a STANDALONE. The story also plays fair to the other seasons, in addition to Christmastime, so it can be enjoyed all year long.
Excerpt They walked in silence as they weaved around tourists of all nationalities. Blanca soaked in the diversity and half-heartedly discerned the different languages she heard in passing, picking up a phrase here and there as the Christmas spirit thrived among the bustling crowd.
In the distance, Julien leaned against the trunk of his car with his arms folded across his broad pecs. He was dressed in a dark blue cable knit sweater and gray slacks like he’d just come from a semi-formal event even though the sun had only been up for about an hour. He tilted his head to the side, and his blond hair fell in large, unkempt waves covering half of his face. Neither a smile nor a frown played upon his full lips, but the subtle wrinkles at the corner of his eye betrayed his excitement in seeing all of them.
He looked so beautiful … beautiful and sad.
Maybe, heartbroken might be a better word.
Blanca’s footsteps fell into a slower pace as she inspected him. It was one thing to know in the recesses of her memory that she had seen … and touched … and, let’s just come right out and be blunt … licked all of his bits and parts. But it was an entirely other matter when she had him trapped in her iPhone as nothing but an extreme close-up of sea-glass-bleached-by-the-sun eyes with a wicked grin that could seduce her outright. Except that she was impervious to his moves thanks to their lack of continental proximity.
But, seeing him again face to face sent an unexpected and entirely unwelcome zing of feels to her bits and parts, and an overwhelming urge to turn around and hop the next flight out kicked her in the chest right where she felt the biggest zing of all.
The gravity of the moment rushed up on all of them as Julien reached out to Chase first. Both men embraced one another, planting kisses on each other’s cheeks and breathing out their condolences over the loss of their grandmother.
They had grown up together at Julien’s family’s estate. Chase, though American-born, had spent almost all of his summers living in Champagne with Julien and his family, which was just a short walk across the driveway to his grandmother’s home, according to Chase’s explanation during one of their flights.
Julien pulled back from his cousin and faced Maxie, gripping both her shoulders and tugging her into a stoic kiss that barely grazed her cheek. When he finally turned to Blanca, his expression shifted to a curious eagerness that bordered on desperation, and her pulse decided to skyrocket.
“I am so pleased you’ve come to see me, to see my home. I wish it were under better circumstances.” Julien cupped Blanca’s face with his ice-cold palms and leaned down to kiss her cheek, catching the corner of her mouth causing her breath to hitch out loud.
As Blanca searched for a reply, Julien turned and opened the trunk and, with Chase’s help, jigsaw puzzled the suitcases and duffel bags into his car while Maxie shuffled Blanca into the back seat with her.
She crossed one leg over the other and started bouncing it back and forth.
“Are you okay?” Maxie patted Blanca’s white jeans-clad leg. “You’re going to stab one of these guys in the back with that spiked heel on your boot if you don’t calm down. What gives?”
“Nothing. Everything. I probably shouldn’t have come.”
“Why? Julien obviously wants you here. He only asked you every day for the last week if you’re still coming, and you even cancelled appointments for him. You can’t back out now. Besides, it’s Christmas. It’s our duty to spread some joy up in these guys.”
Spreading definitely leads to joy.
“I just don’t want him to get the wrong idea. I’m only here to see more of France. I didn’t think—” she lowered her voice to a whisper as Julien and Chase walked around the sides of the car. “I’d ever see him again, or, if I ever did, it would be like a whole year from now at another one of Chase’s parties or after our routine chit-chat eventually lost its steam.”
“So what? You talk to him all the time. What’s the big deal?”
“He’s just a friend. I don’t regret fooling around when we met, but I can’t be more than that now.”
Maxie chuckled and shook her head. “No one’s asking you to.”
Tell that to my heart.
Julien and Chase got into the car, slamming their creaky doors and continuing their conversation in French as Julien fired up the engine and pulled away from the airport. Maxie shrugged at Blanca and leaned in, expecting a translation.
Blanca listened for a seconds, tugging her fingers out of her black leather gloves. “The funeral is tomorrow afternoon with a huge gathering afterward, and it’s going to be packed,” she whispered. “We’re also the last to show up. Almost everyone’s here in the city. They’re, uh, he’s offering, no wait, he said you guys should stay with Chase’s parents at his grandma’s house because of all the drama he caused the last time you three were under one roof.” Hmph. “Which he’s still sorry about,” she added, under her breath. Then, her eyes flew open, and she swatted Julien’s shoulder with her gloves. “Hey, where am I supposed to stay?”
“With me,” Julien replied, then continued his conversation with Chase.
“Hellllo? Don’t I have any say in this decision?”
“You can stay in one of my parents’ guestrooms. I’m sure they won’t mind, but wouldn’t you rather keep me company? You spend all your nights with me on FaceTime as it is.”
He’s got me there.
Blanca leaned in and whispered into Maxie’s ear to ensure they couldn’t hear her. “If things get weird staying with Chase’s parents, I’ll fake a meltdown and get us into a hotel, and if Julien gets all grabby hands on me while I’m staying with him, I’ll, eh, I guess I’ll just see how it goes.”
Damn, I’m weak.
Chase twisted around in his seat. “What are you two scheming now?”
“Nothing,” they both exclaimed at the same time.
Author Brooke E. Wayne
About the Author BROOKE E. WAYNE is a Contemporary Romantic Comedy novelist who lives the RomCom dream in California. She is married to a South Philly, Eagles-obsessed Italian who she met online before it was cool. They have two young daughters who flood their happily-ever-after lives with girly giggles and immeasurable love.
When she is not dribbling sticky sweet/sensual romance with a lighthearted, witty twist all over the pages of a RomCom manuscript, she teaches English Language Arts.
Welcome to the book blitz for BLACK & BLUE, a stand-alone adult contemporary LGBTQ+ romance by Ily Jacks. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
Synopsis Trouble seems to follow me everywhere. No doubt accepting a ride from a sexy, fierce biker on a rainy night seems like another bad move. Except this one desperate leap of faith brings Declan into my life.
From unreadable machine to possessive lover, he challenges me to want more.
Can I finally throw off the shackles of my tough life and embrace the promise of a good man?
Black & Blue is a standalone M/M romance with graphic sexual content, violent situations, and extreme profanity.
Excerpt Stumbling from the Harley, my legs feel like jelly. My starving stomach no longer growls, now as numb as the rest of my cold, battered body.
“Where are we?” I ask when the biker only stares at me.
Soft rain soaks his thick, dark hair and beard. He looks like a wild man, ready to skin and devour his kill. I’m desperate to look away from his nearly black eyes and remain in control of myself. I can’t, though, because he both terrifies and intrigues me.
“I live in the apartment upstairs. You can crash here until you figure things out.”
When his hand jerks forward, I immediately flinch and expect more violence after a shitty day that’ll never end. His hand grips the back of my neck, sending panic and pain through me. I fist my hands and prepare to fight him. Exhausted after so long running, I never expect his lips to crush mine. He forces my mouth open and tastes me roughly.
I can’t think. Nothing about the biker’s earlier demeanor made me believe he desired me, so his kiss throws me off guard. I never consider what he might expect from me in return for a safe place to stay for the night. No, instead my fear violently shifts into the kind of lust I’ve long imagined and never enjoyed.
Before I can meet his passion with mine, the biker releases me and turns away. I’m left rejected and desperate, yet unable to show either emotion. My only option is to follow him obediently.
Author Ily Jacks
About the Author Living in Indiana with my three sweet sons, three wacky cats, one super mom (and her ugly dog), I love cats, 1970s rock, Call of Duty, and sitcoms canceled before their time.
I also write M/F contemporary romance as Bijou Hunter.
Synopsis Mad Magic is a beautifully dark and rich Young Adult fantasy from Nicole Conway, bestselling author of the Dragonrider Chronicles.
Josie Barton is a high school student living in terror. Invisible creatures torment her everywhere she goes, constantly getting her into trouble at school, and even haunting her apartment. But just when Josie thinks things couldn’t get any worse . . . she meets the guy from across the hall.
Zeph Clemmont is a changeling with enemies in all the worst places, fighting to undo a curse that threatens to end his life. Survival means he will have to swallow his pride and trust Josie with all his darkest secrets.
With the help of a gun-slinging shaman and the enigmatic Prince of Nightmares, Zeph and Josie are only a heartbeat away from defeating one of the most diabolical faerie villains their world has ever known.
Excerpt “What does the faerie language sound like?”
Eldrick’s tense, furrowed brow went slack. His expression became as serene and blissful as the cool surface of the moon. “Music,” he breathed the word as though it were ecstasy.
“You mean like the chimes?” I knew that sound well.
He nodded slowly. “Ages ago, some called it the music of the spheres. Your father possessed an exquisitely intimate knowledge of spellsongs. He could hear the tones and translate the harmonics into the human language.” We paused at a corner, letting a few bicyclers pass on the sidewalk. “To be perfectly frank, I’m impressed he was able to do such a thing. The details of our language, particularly the ancient spellsongs that comprise spellwork, are difficult for even an elder fae to discern. I’ve never seen so many texts about us in the human language before.”
My head spun with questions as I tried to keep up with Eldrick’s long strides. “What’s a spellsong? And what does it have to do with spellwork?”
“A spellsong is, as you described it, the chimes. The use of magic of any kind has a unique sound. A song, if you will.”.
Author Nicole Conway
About the Author New York Times bestselling author Cassia Leo loves her coffee, chocolate, and margaritas with salt. When she’s not writing, she spends way too much time re-watching Game of Thrones and Sex and the City. When she’s not binge watching, she’s usually enjoying the Oregon rain with a hot cup of coffee and a book.
Welcome to the book blitz for GOLDEN CHAINS, the third book in the new adult romance/romantic suspense series, The Colorblind Trilogy, by Rose B. Mashal. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
GOLDEN CHAINS (The Colorblind Trilogy #3) by Rose B. Mashal
Synopsis “Royalty is a dirty game.” That’s what he’d once told her, but she couldn’t imagine how dirty it could really get.
Blessed now more than ever, Marie’s love for Mazen continues to grow, and with it, her worries and doubts, as well.
Just as they think that all of the past drama could be left behind, an enemy starts plotting revenge and ways to break them apart, forcing Marie into facing her worst fears.
With everything around her threatening her happiness, along with the well-being of the ones she loves the most, is there a limit to what Marie will do to protect them from certain danger? There might be none.
Because when it comes to love, pain can be bearable and chains become breakable.
Prologue The smell of death saturated the air, assaulting my nose and filling my lungs with its unwelcome stench. With it came the horrible feeling of sickness and the fear of the unknown.
The scenario of dead people surrounding me, and others struggling as they fought for their lives wasn’t new to me, I’d seen it before. The only difference this time was that I wasn’t a scared little girl anymore. No, I was a horrified, fully grown woman.
For the past few days, I trusted that everything would be okay in the end. It was the only thing that kept me going. I refused to let go. I refused to allow anxiety to start stabbing at my heart or hold my brain in its disgusting claws.
But right now, I didn’t know how to be strong anymore. I didn’t know how to keep it together while feeling this agonizing pain in my body, or this unbearable ache in my chest. Being here was much more than I could tolerate.
Screaming my heart out seemed like a pretty good idea. Something in me believed that it would give me some sort of relief. But I couldn’t do that because I didn’t know if it would mean my rescue, or if it would only bring unwanted attention to me. The kind of attention that I didn’t want.
So, I held in my screams, but I couldn’t keep my tears from flowing. They simply escaped, just like the blood that was now seeping out of my body. I had no control over either of them.
I wasn’t mad at myself for crying, no. I was proud of the strength I’d shown since I was brought here. Mazen would be proud of me as well.
Mazen… My heart sank at the memory of the last time I’d seen him. My mind replayed the image of him, his head held high, and he stood tall, his features were colder than ice, and the look in his eyes was harder than stone.
I remembered the tears I’d shed as I watched him spitting orders and shouting commands. I remembered the struggle I felt to keep breathing as I heard him making threats and promising the unthinkable.
I also remembered calling to him, and him never answering me.
I remembered exactly when my heart broke. And I recalled promising myself that I’d never show weakness ever again.
But realizing what was happening now – I knew this was probably the end. There was no point in not showing weakness, no point in being strong; nor there was a point in keeping it together.
At the top of my lungs.
My scream declared all of what I was feeling during the past days – the hurt, the pain, the fear, the worry, the shame, and the broken heart.
All it earned me was a split second of relief. I knew very well that it could be heard beyond those doors. I knew it could be the cry of the prey, which made it easier for attackers to locate it.
It couldn’t be undone, and I didn’t have it in me to regret it. I was ready to meet my fate.
Author Rose B. Mashal
About the Author Rose is a loved mother, wife, and a stay at home lawyer. Writing is her passion, and reading is her obsession. Music is her best friend and sarcasm is her speaking trend. One of her joys is bringing happiness to others and her biggest wish is that they stay true to one another. Through her stories, she wants to spread nothing except understanding, peace and love.
Synopsis After living in the carnival world, Polina Kominski is anxious to put down roots and build a life that includes a permanent home and, someday, a family. But first, she has to spend Christmas in Kraków, Poland to satisfy the final request of her late mother. Angry at having her strings pulled one last time, she’s resigned to follow the detailed instructions left to her, but refuses to believe the superstitions and allusions to magic Mom wants her to experience. And what’s with number eight on her mother’s itinerary, Kiss a Stranger?
To avoid facing his family’s sins, international banker, Rhys Linsey, will travel the lengths of the globe in his quest to regain the collection of ancient artifacts stolen from him years ago. When he runs into Polina on a Kraków street, he volunteers to help her experience the beauty of the holiday while sharing the history and folklore of this charming city. No matter how much she denies the existence of magic, he’s determined to prove her wrong.
Christmas in Kraków weaves a powerful spell, but Polina is running toward her future, while Rhys is stubbornly mired in the past. Can the magic of the holiday extend beyond December to bring Rhys and Polina full-circle to love?
Excerpt #3 Rhys receives an invitation to his parents’ wedding anniversary party and confronts his sister via online chat:
The last missive in the pile was an embossed heavy-weight envelope with familiar flowery writing on the outside. He lifted the envelope to his nose, sniffed. She still used the same scented paper. Or was he the only lucky recipient of this particular perfume because she wanted him to remember all the memories entrenched inside? He wouldn’t put it past her to resort to emotional blackmail to get a rise out of him. That had always been one of Eliza’s most devious tricks.
Already knowing what he’d find inside, he tore open the flap. Sure enough, an invitation greeted him. A very personal invitation, including the added postscript, It would mean a lot to your family if you came.
Well, he supposed he should RSVP since she went to all this trouble for him. Mailing back the response card wouldn’t do. Neither would a phone call. Maybe she was online? He’d love to see her face, even via cyberspace. It would be good to revisit, to tease her about her overbite for old times’ sake.
He powered on his laptop and accessed his chat function. Lo and behold, her name appeared in his list of “online now” associates. Naturally. Eliza was the ultimate night owl. He typed a quick, “Ahoy, E!” to her and waited. It didn’t take long before her pretty face—with the adorable, but prominent overbite—appeared on his screen.
“Well, well,” she purred. “Look who decided to be sociable this year. And to think I thought I’d have to wait until the end of the decade to hear from you. To what do I owe the pleasure?”
He waved the ivory envelope near his screen. “I got your invitation.”
“And you didn’t immediately chuck it in the nearest dust bin? Progress. I’m honored.”
“How are you, Eliza?”
“I’m well, Rhys. But, what’s going on with you? Mum said you called her the other night, and now, here you are, tagging me to chat? Are you dying or something?”
He chuckled. “Sorry to disappoint. I’ve met somebody. She’s got me rethinking my priorities.”
A smug smile split her apple cheeks. “Would this be the same somebody who had you thanking our parents for your idyllic upbringing?”
“Mother told you about that, huh?”
She snorted. “You’re lucky she didn’t alert the media.” She curled her fingers in air quotes. “The Prodigal Son is returning to the fold.”
“It wasn’t that big a deal.”
“It was to her. She broke down crying when she told me.”
Oh, for heaven’s sake. “Happy tears or angry tears?” Their mother was known to cry both. Delighted when a chipmunk scampered across their lawn, she could fall into a full-on weepfest if that same chipmunk got attacked by the neighbor’s cat.
“Happy,” Eliza told him. “Most definitely, happy.” She leaned closer to the camera, her face filling his screen and warming his heart. “Tell me about your somebody.”
“Why? You need to hear the gossip before Sara does?”
She clucked her tongue. “Couldn’t I just be concerned about my wayward brother?”
“Since always. We love you, Rhys. Even Sara. You have no idea how much your phone call the other night meant to all of us.”
“Including our father?”
She sighed. “Still nursing that grudge?” His lips tightened into a grimace, but the groan escaped anyway, and she pointed a finger at him, laughing. “My God. You’re still afraid of him?”
“I’ve never been afraid of him. I just don’t want to be tainted by association.”
“You’ve been running away from him since you could walk.”
“Wrong. How can you all just forget what he did? To Mom? To us?” His voice rose in anger—as it always did when the subject of his father’s shenanigans came up, and he shook his head to give himself time to calm down again. “Trust me,” he said in a much softer tone. “I’m better off being far away from Father for a decade or two.”
“I’d say that, after fourteen years away from home, you’ve made your point.” When he didn’t reply, she added, “Oh, for heaven’s sake! Come home, Rhys. Bring your somebody with you. I’m betting Mum would love the chance to meet the woman. By the by, what is her real name?”
“None of your business.”
She tapped a finger on her chin. “Hmm. A trifle long for the place card, but I’ll do my best to fit it. I don’t suppose she’d let me abbreviate it to ‘None,’ do you?”
Author Gina Ardito
About the Author I kill houseplants. There. Now you know one of my greatest shames. I’m not boasting. I just figure that if you’re reading this, you’re looking for more than how wonderful life is as a writer. So here are a few more of my flaws:
I sing all the time. I sing in the car. In the shower. While I’m grocery shopping. And I headbop while I sing. When I’m not singing, I talk to myself. Just ignore me and move on. You get used to it after a while. I don’t eat my vegetables. Seriously. I’d rather have a cookie. I’m extremely fair-skinned and could burn under a 60-watt light bulb. I can’t sleep without background noise. If it’s too dark and too quiet, all I have are my thoughts. And even *I* don’t want to be alone with my thoughts.
Don’t ask me to Zumba, line dance, or march in the parade. I have absolutely no rhythm. Regrets. I have more than a few. My favorite activity is sleep. I don’t clock a lot of hours, but I powernap like a Persian cat and rejuvenate within ten minutes. I consider shopping and dining out excellent therapy for anything wrong in my life. My feet are always cold. Always. My husband claims it’s because I’m an alien sent to Earth to destroy him. (He might be right about that.)
Coming to my house for a visit? Unless you’ve given me plenty of advance notice, be prepared. My floor will not be vacuumed, there will be dishes in my sink, and I only make my bed when I change the sheets once a week (I’m climbing back into it ASAP. Why make it?) Housecleaning is not high on my priority list. Okay, to be totally honest, it’s not on the list at all. I can resist anything…except ice cream.
Since this is our first date, I figure I’ve revealed enough secrets for now. But if you’ve read this bio and think I might be the author for you, pick up one of my books. You won’t be disappointed.
Welcome to the book blitz for THE RIGHT KIND OF RECKLESS, the second book in the new adult contemporary/military romance series, Reckless Hearts, by Heather Van Fleet. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
THE RIGHT KIND OF RECKLESS (Reckless Hearts #2) by Heather Van Fleet
Synopsis “You’ll fall in love with these rugged Marines and their Reckless Hearts!” —Kelly Gendron, USA Today bestselling author of the Breaking the Declan Brothers series
I’m in love with a woman I can’t have, and there’s absolutely nothing I can do to stop myself from falling.
The problem? Her brother’s my best friend.
I shouldn’t want her this much. Not when it goes against the bro code. Not when I’ve never been able to commit to a woman for longer than a night.
But one look into her eyes and I’m a mess for her. She’s my everything. And I have to walk away with nothing.
Excerpt Addie and I watched the guys play round after round of Skee-B all, while Chloe jumped and cheered and stole the occasional ball from each of their rows. No matter what my state in life was, I was happy the three of them had found one another.
“Here, let’s get our picture drawn.” Knocking me out of my woolgathering, Addie guided me toward one of the caricature sketchers who sat just outside the carnival gates. The man had a unibrow the size of Lake Michigan’s shoreline, and his mustache was curled at the end, handlebar style. But his work was amazing. Charcoal sketches with colored eyes, balloon- shaped heads with movie-s tar hair.
“How much for both of us?” Addie asked, fishing through her purse. We sat on the stools, as directed, our shoulders touching.
“Thirty- five,” the guy said, his fake French accent too thick to be believable.
I groaned and looked at my friend. “Seriously? That’s too much.”
“Seriously. We have to do this.” Addie mocked me. “Look at how cute those are.” She pointed to a couple with a heart surrounding their heads. Little doves swooped in the air around them, carrying heart balloons in their beaks. Had to hand it to the guy. He was talented.
“I’ve got this, ladies.” I looked up at the sound of Max’s deep voice, finding him searching through his wallet. He pulled out the money, handed it to the artist, then lifted his gaze to meet mine. A soft smile covered his bow-shaped lips, and everything inside me stirred to life at the view.
Addie faked a cough, then pressed a hand over her stomach. “Oh…oh no. I don’t feel very good, guys.”
I faced her and narrowed my eyes as she stood. Don’t, I mouthed, already knowing her game.
Ignoring me, she looked at Max and said, “You’ll take my place, won’t you, Max?” She batted those brown eyes and twirled a lock of her dark hair. No doubt her way of getting anyone and everyone to say yes to her. “Lia here was dying to get her picture drawn.”
Oh, the little liar…
Max nodded, immediately taking her empty seat to my right. With an extra hop in her step, Addie walked away, her ponytail swinging back and forth more the closer she got to Collin and Gavin and Chloe. I wanted to pull it out of her head.
“All right, look this way.” I blinked at the sound of the artist’s voice, my body far too aware of Max’s heady scent.
God, why did he have to smell so good? Fit so perfectly against me?
“You’re much too stiff.” The artist asked from behind his easel. “Here, wrap your arm around zee pretty lady’s waist, like so.”
I sucked in a breath as Max’s hand was guided along my back, ending at my side with his fingers tucked just under the edge of my T- shirt. I swallowed, shifting in my seat and instantly remembering our kiss— the way he’d moved his mouth over mine.
Warmth pooled low in my stomach, drifting in between my thighs. His touch was like adrenaline, kick- starting my orgasm-starved body to life.
“Chin on her shoulder, lips close to her ear…” I shuddered as Max followed the artist’s directions to a T, the stubble on his chin igniting a stormy thunder inside me. Max seemed unaffected, his chest rising and falling at an even rate, while mine was suddenly in asthmatic mode.
“Relax,” Max whispered in my ear, his warm breath grazing my neck. “I’m not gonna bite ya.”
I shut my eyes and shifted once again, the ache between my thighs becoming unbearable. “I didn’t want to do this,” I finally murmured, refocusing on the artist.
Max laughed softly, his chest vibrating against my back and shoulder. “I know you didn’t.”
My eyebrows pushed together in annoyance. “Then why did you agree to sit here?”
“Because Addie wouldn’t give up until I did.” He sighed, far too relaxed compared to me.
I was jumping, itching, crawling with…something, yet he was unaffected. Which only further emphasized that he didn’t want me the way I did him.
“Plus, she folds my underwear, remember? Gotta make sure she doesn’t stick ants in them or something.”
“Yeah, like Addie would ever stoop to your level.” I couldn’t help but grin, my nerves easing slightly.
He squeezed my ribs. “You would.”
I turned to face him, our noses inches apart. “Damn right I would.”
A slow nod later, he moved even closer, our bodies in sync…
My smile fell away. “Maxwell,” I whispered, so lost in his dark eyes that I couldn’t concentrate. The apology was there on my tongue like earlier, but the need weighing me down was even heavier. How could I ever be just friends with a guy who was likely to break my heart, no matter what we were to each other?
“Tell me why you kissed me that night.” He looked at my lips, a serious glint in his eyes.
Blood rushed to my face at his out-o f- the- blue question. My composure slipped as confusion took its place. Why was he asking me this?
“Because I…” I gulped. “I owed you, remember? For bailing me out and for keeping me safe from those guys.”
Something shifted in his eyes. Disappointment? I squeezed my eyes shut at the thought. When I looked back at him, I knew I was imagining things, because flirty, fun Max was back, winking at me. “Well then.” He cleared his throat. “That’s good to know.”
“What’s good to know?” I frowned.
“That you still owe me.”
Author Heather Van Fleet
About the Author Heather Van Fleet is stay-at-home-mom turned book boyfriend connoisseur. She’s a wife to her high school sweetheart, a mom to three little girls, and in her spare time you can find her with her head buried in her Kindle, guzzling down copious amounts of coffee.
Heather graduated from Black Hawk College in 2003 with an associate degree and has been working in the publishing industry for over five years. She is represented by Stacey Donaghy of Donaghy Literary.
Welcome to the book blitz for DEAD BLUE SEA, the first book in the adult post-apocalyptic paranormal romance series, Berkano Vampire Collection: Watchtower, by New York Times bestselling author, Erin Hayes. See below for information on the book, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway. For a limited time, you can pick up the eBook for just $0.99!
DEAD BLUE SEA (Berkano Vampire Collection – Watchtower #1) by Erin Hayes
Synopsis Point Break meets Buffy in post-apocalyptic Cape Town, South Africa.
They say that surfing used to be a way of life. In Devil’s Bay, it’s the only way to survive.
My name is Carlyle. I’m a water witch who protects the fishermen of my village from the danger beneath the waves. My days are spent on my longboard saving everyone from the fins. My nights are spent dreaming of something more than my small village isolated from the outside contact by cliffs and jagged peaks.
Then a storm strikes out of the blue, and, well, I wipe out. When I wake up, I’m on the other side of the bay surrounded by vampires who want to see me dead. Major bummer.
Only Kopano, an outcast of the fangers, seems to take pity on me. You see, Kopano also spent his nights dreaming of something more, and he thinks I hold the key. The only catch? To find the truth, we’ll have to face the dead blue sea.
Excerpt “There’s some sort of irony,” I grumble, “in being sensitive to sunlight but also having to be outside during the day. Every damn day.”
She shrugs. “Do you want me to go tell the sharks to stop being nocturnal and hunt during the day?”
I snicker. “Aw, could you? Because then the fishermen could do their thing at night. And we could all avoid the sun like good, self-respecting, UV-sensitive witches.”
She chuckles darkly. “Ag, if only! But this is what we signed up for.”
I flick some sea water her way, and she squeals in mock-shock. “I signed up for this?”
Her smile falters. “Well, your mother did. But you’re still out here.”
Not that I really have any choice in the matter. It’s what’s best for the village, and there’s no denying that. I’m the best remaining water witch—if I suddenly stopped, we all knew that fishermen would lose their lives, food would become scarce in my village, and my own sense of self-preservation would be to blame.
Stuck between a shark and a wet place, I guess.
Author Erin Hayes
About Nana Malone Sci-fi junkie, video game nerd, and wannabe manga artist Erin Hayes writes a lot of things. Sometimes she writes books.
She works as an advertising copywriter by day, and she’s an award-winning New York Times Bestselling Author by night. She has lived in New Zealand, Hawaii, Texas, Alabama, and now San Francisco with her husband, cat, and a growing collection of geek paraphernalia.
You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org and she’ll be happy to chat. Especially if you want to debate Star Wars.
Welcome to the book blitz for IN FOR THE WIN, the fifth book in the adult contemporary sports romance/romantic suspense series, Against the Cage, by USA Today bestselling author, Melynda Price. See below for information on the book, buy links, and an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
IN FOR THE WIN (Against the Cage #5) by Melynda Price
About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited Title: IN FOR THE WIN Series: Against the Cage #5 Author: Melynda Price Release Date: March 2, 2017
Genre: Adult Contemporary Sports Romance/Romantic Suspense
Links: Goodreads | Amazon| Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU
Synopsis To win his heart, she’ll have to give him the one thing that could drive him away—the truth…
Kyle Scott’s talent for fighting paved the way for a career he never wanted, but needed to survive. Five years later, he doesn’t recognize the man he’s become. All his focus and energy has been poured into raising his little sister, leaving no time or interest for anything beyond a casual hook-up—until he meets a woman who sends his life spiraling out of control.
Penelope Cantrel isn’t looking for love, but she’s always ready for a good time. If she keeps everyone at a distance, they can’t discover how broken she is, or the secrets she’s running from. When she crosses paths with the sexy MMA fighter, Kyle’s reputation as a cage-banging manwhore doesn’t concern her. She isn’t interested in a commitment. But after their white-hot attraction leads to a night of mind-blowing sex, neither of them will ever be the same again.
When Pen starts receiving threatening messages, her deepest fears are realized as she becomes the obsession of a man who will kill to possess her. Concerned for her safety, Kyle offers to pose as her boyfriend to deter her unwanted admirer, but his heated touches and those not-so-innocent kisses don’t feel like he’s acting. Could the infamous playboy be falling for her?
As the threat against Pen escalates, her stalker is closer than they thought. Kyle is the only thing standing between her and a madman, but she fears trusting him with her secrets could be a fatal mistake.
Excerpt Tonight, when Pen had crawled into his bed, Kyle foolishly hoped she was feeling it too. But as hot as the sex had been, something was still missing. An emotional connection? He didn’t really know, because he’d never felt or wanted one before. But he’d sensed she was holding a part of herself back.
Their disconnect hadn’t been physical. Fuck, he’d never felt so much pleasure—ungloved and coming inside her. The sensation, the intensity…there were no words. Even now he was growing hard just from the memory. No, that definitely had not been their problem. The issue, he feared, was emotional. And the struggle to synch Pen’s body with her mind was going to be a challenge. Question was, could he do it? Because he was starting to wonder if his efforts wouldn’t be fought at every turn.
Something in her past had broken her. He didn’t know what, how, or by whom, but her reaction to him earlier left little doubt in his mind. And even the possibility that she’d been abused—physical?—sexually?—filled him with such protective rage, a part of him almost feared discovering the truth. But how could he be the glue to help mend her broken pieces if he couldn’t figure out how they fit back together? She was a puzzle, a complex enigma he wanted to solve because deep down he knew the prize would be her heart.
Pen shook her head, looking utterly and completely lost. “I don’t know, Kyle. This isn’t supposed to be real. And it scares me that you’re changing the rules.”
“And you didn’t change the rules when you climbed into my bed? What the fuck was that about, then? You think because you made them, you can break them without consequence? Or is it because I fuck around that you think you get a pass—that this means nothing to me.”
As each word flew out of his mouth, he could see it ratcheting her fear. And yet he couldn’t seem to shut the fuck up. Her defenses were high and there was no getting past those walls, but he kept battering them with his verbal ground and pound assault. He wasn’t leaving this room until one of them tapped. Unfortunately, he was starting to get concerned that someone was going to be him.
She shook her head in denial, stepping back. And because he was a fighter, he advanced—countering her move for move until her retreat was halted by the bed.
“It was a mistake… This was a mistake…”
“Oh, now it’s a mistake? Because I’m not interested in being your boy-toy? Because you’re scared I might actually want something from you, like, oh…an ounce a trust?—a glimmer of emotion? Something to tell me that I might mean something more to you than a cock to get off on!”
Her eyes narrowed, little hands tightening into fists, and he knew he’d pushed her too far.
“What the fuck, Kyle? I thought I was the one with the vagina! Just because we fucked that doesn’t give you a one-way pass into my life. You don’t have any more right to my secrets than I do yours. You don’t see me trying to pry into your private life, do you? We’re friends—with benefits—and if you want us to stay that way then respect my goddamn boundaries.”
“With benefits? Thanks anyway, I think I’ll pass. I can fuck anytime I want, I don’t need you for that.” He turned to storm out, but her parting words won that round and had him tapping out.
“I was talking about the friends part…”
Author Melynda Price
About the Author Melynda Price is a USA Today Award-Winning Finalist in Contemporary Romance. Her bestselling mixed-martial-arts romance, Against the Cage series, has multiple times hit #1 in the Amazon Bestsellers list. She is releasing a new romantic suspense series, Beneath the Surface, this fall.
A multi-published author of contemporary and paranormal romance, what Price enjoys most about writing is the chance to make her readers fall in love, over and over again. She cites the greatest challenge of writing is making the unbelievable believable, while taking her characters to the limit with stories full of passion and unique twists and turns. Salting stories with undertones of history whenever possible, Price strives to plant her characters deep into her readers’ hearts so they will long be remembered.
She currently lives in Northern Minnesota with her husband and two children, where she has plenty of snow-filled days to write while curled up in front of the fireplace with her Chihuahua and a hot cup of coffee.
Welcome to the book blitz for BUTTERFLY, a stand-alone novel in the new adult contemporary romance series, Public Enemy, by award-winning author, Cambria Hebert. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive first look at the Prologue, and details on her giveaway.
BUTTERFLY (Public Enemy) by Cambria Hebert
About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: BUTTERFLY Series: Public Enemy Series Standalone Author: Cambria Hebert Release Date: November 3, 2017 Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance Links: Goodreads | Amazon| Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU
Synopsis Drunken brawls. One-night stands. No-show interviews. Toilet-papering my hoity-toity neighbor’s house. Insulting my fans. Trashing hotel rooms. What’s it take to become public enemy number one?
I just told you. I’ve done all that and more. My poor conduct got me on the Celebs Behaving Badly list and ultimately ruined my career.
From the world’s number-one popstar to world’s most hated. That’s me. Ten Stark. Go underground, they said. Stay out of the spotlight. Most importantly, stay out of trouble. Everyone loves a good comeback story. For once, I listened.
I met someone who didn’t know my name, my face, or the bad behavior that defined me. She taught me I wasn’t who everyone thought I was—everyone including me.
Then someone whispered my name and things got messy, as they always do. Now I want her back. I’m not a caterpillar, but a butterfly. My wings are in full color, not just black and white.
But first, I have to shed my cocoon and fly.
Prologue Five countries. Thirteen cities. Four weeks.
A show in each city, interviews, press… people. Masses of people.
This was my life. A never-ending cycle of shows and appearances and, as of late, an ever-growing list of bad behavior.
I lifted the silver flask up to my lips, then screwed my face into a snarl when my lips and tongue stayed dry. “Why is this empty?” I said to everyone and anyone.
“Because you drank it all?” someone to my left offered.
I gave them a withering look. “You don’t get paid for sarcasm. Fill it.” Thrusting the flask toward the minion, I dismissed him and gazed out the window. My knee bounced rapidly. The nervous energy coiling in my system was never satiated. Not even when my veins had more alcohol in them than blood.
Seconds later, the flask appeared under my nose, and I swiped it up and tipped it back. The familiar burn of vodka slid down my throat. After two long draws, I pulled it back, tucking it into my chest to sigh.
“Where are we again?” I asked as the limo slid to a stop. Even through the heavily tinted windows, the flashbulbs from all the press and fans were blinding. I slid the Versace sunglasses down off my head, over my eyes.
“It’s nighttime,” the person sitting beside me intoned.
I glanced over, not bothering to remove the glasses. “Do you value your job?”
People were banging on the windows, trying to peer in. Their hot breath left clouds on the outside of the glass, and security shouted at everyone to get back.
My assistant shrank. “Well, yes.”
“Then shut up.” I turned away, back to the window and the chaos that reigned beyond it. I took another long swig of the top-shelf vodka.
“We’re in Amsterdam,” my manager said from across the limo.
Beside her, my bodyguard pressed a finger to the black piece in his ear. “All clear,” he told me.
As the door opened, I stuffed the flask into my tailored, leather designer jacket. It wasn’t available to the public yet, not for anyone who wasn’t me.
Screams and shrill cries cut through the night, drowning out all my own thoughts, making me feel numb.
The second my foot stretched out of the ride, the noise level went up about twenty notches. Unfolding from the backseat, I felt the familiar weight of the flask in my pocket.
The second the car door slammed behind me, I threw up my arms and grinned. “What’s up, Amsterdam?”
Everyone went crazy. Women were crying, even some dudes. A plethora of hands and arms reached out over the guardrails, straining to touch me, as everyone screamed my name.
I gave a couple high-fives as flashbulbs burst around me, making my eyes strain.
“C’mon,” my bodyguard said, ushering me toward the entrance.
As we went, I would pause for a couple photos and stop to sign a few posters featuring my face.
“Please, Ten!” Girls were begging, trying to get my attention.
Just before the entrance to the venue, I stopped and went to the rail again, posing to take a selfie with a few fans.
“Oh my God, I love you!” someone screamed.
“You and everybody else,” I muttered.
I moved toward the door, but a dark shape darted out in front of us. I blinked.
A man with a camera and a bag of white shit clutched in his hands jumped in front of us. “You suck!” he spat and lifted the bag, no doubt to bomb me with whatever that shit was.
“Whoa!” My bodyguards pushed me out of the way as the powder disbursed all over the ground instead of all over me, as was intended.
The asshole lunged to the side, managing to get out of the clutches of my guard. He sprang toward me. I didn’t think. I just reacted and threw out my fist, nailing him right in the face.
He went down, falling right in the center of the mess he created. His body writhed as he screamed and yelled. “My nose!” he wailed. “You broke my nose.”
Men ushered me away, stepping in front of the spectacle, and whisked me into the building.
“I’m going to sue you!” the man roared. “I’ll see you in court!”
That was the last thing I heard before the doors cut off the circus.
“You shouldn’t have done that.”
I turned around, the flask clutched in my hand, to face the door my manager was filling.
“That asshole had it coming.”
“Probably.” She amended, no give in her voice. “But it doesn’t matter. You know this is going to be yet another PR nightmare. One you can’t afford.”
I drained the contents of the flask and then dropped it on the table beside me. My assistant was nearby, and I motioned for him to fill it up again.
“You’ve had enough.”
“You’re my manager, not my mother.”
“Seems to me you could use some mothering,” she snapped. “You have a show to perform.”
I spread out my arms. “I’m here, aren’t I?”
“You can’t perform if you can’t stand up.”
A stage tech stuck their head in my dressing room. “We need you backstage.”
I moved across the room, swiping the flask out of the minion’s hand to take a lengthy, healthy swig before thrusting it back. Wiping my mouth with the back of my hand, I belched.
“Let’s do this.”
On my way out the door, my manager, Becca, grabbed my wrist. “You know the deal.”
“I know. Say nothing. Even when the fans act like entitled little assholes.”
“Don’t mention what happened outside either.”
“You smell like a fucking brewery,” she said, disgusted.
Snatching my arm back, I strode out and went down the long hallway toward the stage. People parted as I walked, making room for me.
The wail of the crowd could be heard even back here. The act who warmed them up must have done their job. I couldn’t even remember who it was.
I didn’t care.
“Suit up!” someone yelled, and I was gestured toward the back. A few minutes later, I was strapped into some kind of harness with cables, and the crowd began to chant my name.
Anger rose up inside me. Anger at everything and everyone. Energy from the crowd, the music, everything in this entire building pressed in, fighting for room inside my body, pushing out who I was as a person, and dominating.
I was just a guest here. A guest in my own skin.
The air was thick with heat, even the A/C pouring through the large vents was no match for the way it suffocated everything around me. The crush of bodies, the lights, equipment—all created a barrier. The heat would only grow more intense as the show went on.
“You good?” one of the stagehands asked beside me.
“Just like rehearsals.” He reminded me.
I nodded again. I’d done this so much sometimes I dreamed about flying. Some nights it was a nightmare, falling into a dark, bottomless abyss. Just me falling, rapidly plummeting farther into nothing.
Other nights, it wasn’t so scary. It was a tease. I started out here, backstage, hooked up and ready to fly high. Only when my feet finally left the stage, everyone and everything fell away. I flew off, suddenly unbound by a harness and able to go anywhere I pleased. Away from here. Away from it all.
Music started up. Lights dimmed. People went wild. Adrenaline flooded my veins, and my stomach tilted a little. I blinked back the woozy feeling and shook my head slightly. When I opened my eyes, the world wasn’t tilted like my stomach and my feet were hovering over ground.
My voice filled the arena as it did every concert night. The fans couldn’t see me yet, but my words were everywhere.
“Perfection can be found between the rhythm and the beat.”
The familiar whooshing sound of fog machines pumping out mist filled the stage, and I stared down, watching it fill the space like fog on the set of a horror movie.
I kept going higher and higher above the thousands of people in attendance. Some had glow-sticks, waiving them around. Others had lighters. Some people just screamed.
The crush of bodies made me instantly tired. The anger I felt warred with the exhaustion. All these people claimed to love me… but I knew better.
Maybe some did, sure. But most? They were here to watch me fail. Hoping to see some bad behavior. Hoping I’d give them yet another reason to hate me.
I’d be front page news tomorrow, regardless of how well this concert went tonight. Regardless of how successful this entire tour had been.
I’d be the lead headline because I decked a “fan.” Never mind he was trying to fucking flour-bomb me, then attack me when that was thwarted.
All of them.
Up here above it all, I got some sudden clarity. Like I was finally blissfully alone in a crowded arena.
The familiar beat of a song written just for me obliterated all other sounds. Below me, the crowd roared and bounced around, looking like a giant mosh pit.
A spotlight clicked on, illuminating me.
I went through the motions, the carefully choreographed movements.
“Who’s ready for the best night of your life?” I asked the crowd, and the harness swung me down closer.
Everyone seemed ready.
Everyone but me.
Maybe it was the vodka.
Maybe I was bat-shit crazy.
Maybe I just didn’t fucking care anymore.
Maybe it was the catalyst that saved my life.
Right there as I soared overhead all the adoring fans, something snapped inside me.
Since I was basically tied up, flying high, my options for getting away, for getting the hell out of there, were limited.
I did the first thing that popped into my mind.
Nimbly, my fingers reached for the zipper on my jeans. As the crew swung me toward the stage, I opened up. I released all the vodka that had been filling up my bladder and making me uncomfortable as hell.
I let it rain.
People started shrieking.
I heard my manager screaming in my earpiece. I ripped it out and threw it into the crowd.
“He’s pissing all over us!” someone shouted.
Complete chaos reigned.
I finished up and gave it a little shake. My feet hit the stage. The cords holding me snapped free. My band, everyone on stage with me, was gaping in shock.
I tucked myself back into my jeans, feeling much lighter than before. Everyone was still losing their minds. I held up my hands, and the place went silent.
I could have heard a freaking pin drop. Instead, I actually heard my own thoughts.
What the fuck are you doing? You just pissed on your fans. Literal piss.
Everyone waited for me to say something. Apologize. Claim I was sick.
Rotating my hands so my palms faced the crowd, I gave them the finger.
With both hands.
Now you know. The culmination of events.
How I became Public Enemy Number One.
Author Cambria Hebert
About the Author Cambria Hebert is an award winning, bestselling novelist of more than twenty books. She went to college for a bachelor’s degree, couldn’t pick a major, and ended up with a degree in cosmetology. So rest assured her characters will always have good hair.
Besides writing, Cambria loves a caramel latte, staying up late, sleeping in, and watching movies. She considers math human torture and has an irrational fear of chickens (yes, chickens). You can often find her running on the treadmill (she’d rather be eating a donut), painting her toenails (because she bites her fingernails), or walking her chorkie (the real boss of the house).
Cambria has written within the young adult and new adult genres, penning many paranormal and contemporary titles. Her favorite genre to read and write is romantic suspense. A few of her most recognized titles are: The Hashtag Series, Text, Torch, and Tattoo.
Cambria Hebert owns and operates Cambria Hebert Books, LLC.
Welcome to the book blitz for STRAIGHT TO HELL, the first book in the adult paranormal romance series, Hell’s Gate, by Jane Hinchey. See below for information the book, buy links, the book’s playlist, and details on her giveaway.
Synopsis Everything you think you know is about to change.
My name is Lucifer. You can call me Lucy – I’m also known as the Devil and Satan, though why my idiot brothers came up with those nick names is beyond me. I’m a Guardian Angel and I run Hell. Yup, I’m the CEO.
Hell is easy. Hell runs like a well-oiled machine. Punishment befitting your sins is carried out and once your sentence is done, voilà, you get to go to Heaven. Simple. Easy.
Until suddenly there’s a blip on the radar. A breach. Some numb nuts on earth is trying to open a portal to another dimension. A very bad, very terrifying, very deadly dimension. So instead of my simple life in Hell, I end up earth side, where nothing is as it seems, looking for the soul stealing monster, avoiding the grumpy angel sent from Heaven and finding out my brothers Michael and Gabriel are twats. That last part’s not true – I’ve known they were twats all along.
With an unexpected fondness for my new human friends as a distraction, and my demonic presence stirring up a shit show of epic proportions, all I want to do is go back to my peaceful life in Hell. But someone has to save the world. It may as well be me. .
Author Jane Hinchey
About the Author Aussie Author Jane Hinchey writes sexy, snarky, badass, paranormal romances and urban fantasy novels.
Living in the City of Churches (aka Adelaide, South Australia) with her man, two cats, and turtle, she spends her days writing fantastical stories full of dark sexy vampires, hot shifters, sexy aliens, jaw dropping demons, sinful angels, and magical witches – and while they can be snarky and swear a lot, they mean well and you’ll grow to love them. Honestly.
When she’s not in her writing cave she’s usually playing the Sims, Civilizations or something similar, binge watching Netflix or upping the ante in the crazy cat lady stakes. She loves to hear from her readers, so swing on by her website at www.janehinchey.com and say hi.
Welcome to the book blitz for CHOOSING HOPE, a stand-alone adult romance/thriller, by best-selling author Holly Kammier. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
Synopsis Choosing Hope is a harrowing story of passion and deceit, the things we do for love and the rabbit holes we tumble into chasing elusive fairy-tale endings. Dark around the edges with a shocking twist I didn’t see coming, this is the kind of book you’ll be passing around to your friends so you can talk about it. Holly Kammier delivers romance, suspense, and a strong, smart heroine who turns out to be nobody’s victim. Don’t miss this one! – Kat Ross, best-selling author of The Midnight Sea
A broken marriage.
A love affair.
A lie that changes it all…
Hope Rains Sullivan is living the dream—a successful husband, two beautiful young boys, and a charming home in Northern California. She should be happy. She almost convinced herself she was, until Adrian came along.
Adrian, appears to be everything her husband isn’t. He works with his hands, and is even willing to use them in a fight. He’s sexy, strong and fit, with warm brown skin that alludes to his Spanish background. Best of all, he lives for spending time with his kids. Feeling alone in her marriage, Adrian offers her a way out
Hope’s affair is just the beginning. Her journey inward will require untangling her complicated past and surviving an astonishing revelation. Her lover is not who he pretends to be.
She’s searching for her happily-ever-after, and no matter how painful the journey, she’ll find what she’s been looking for all along—the chance to choose Hope.
Excerpt #2 I held my breath for a beat and tilted my head to press my lips against his. Our mouths parted, fitting softly together at first, until he kissed me harder.
He tasted so good, my body pushed closer. Our lips knew each other. I moved on top of his lap, my legs on either side. His warmth, his crisp citrus scent. This was what kissing someone should feel like.
Hormones, pheromones, love, whatever it was, washed over me. I needed this man. I wanted to feel this way every hour of every single day.
My hand found its way up the back of his shirt. His skin ran hot. The ocean roared. I heard voices talking low, a couple walking by us.
His hand pressed into the small of my back. His other hand grabbed at the nape of my neck. He whispered, “I love you, Hope.”
I froze. He tried to kiss to me again. He couldn’t, not with my lower lip firmly entrenched in my teeth. I bit down with such force, I worried I’d draw blood. Why was he doing this to me? Why was I allowing it to happen
His amber-green eyes looked into mine.
Tears pooled against my lashes.
“I wish you could feel what I’m feeling,” he said, “so you’d know it’s true.”
Author Holly Kammier
About the Author Holly Kammier is a former journalist who has worked everywhere from CNN in Washington, D.C. and KCOP-TV in Los Angeles, to the NBC affiliate in small-town Medford, Oregon. A UCLA honors graduate, she is the author of Kingston Court, her debut novel.
Choosing Hope, her second soon-to-be released novel, is a cross-over to Kingston Court with overlapping characters and locations.
The California native and mother of two, lives in San Diego, California close to her family and friends. Co-Founder of Acorn Publishing, Holly is available for speaking engagements and content editing..
Synopsis Three teenagers. One witch. Twelve souls.
Harvey Anderson always knew the universe was against him, but there’s a lot of stuff he never expected to happen, like having a crush on the most popular girl at school, and then falling into a giant hole in the middle of nowhere with her. And if that wasn’t enough, somehow they managed to release a soul-sucking, ancient witch as well. So yeah, there’s that. You’d think it’d be pretty hard to beat, but knowing Harvey’s luck, it’s about to get a whole lot worse.
Excerpt I glance around at the empty camp. All the other groups have moved off in various directions. I bite my lip, knowing what I’m about to say isn’t going to go down too well with Toni.
“I vote for Lian’s plan,” I say.
“What?” Toni puts her hands on her hips. Her mouth opens and closes. She’s too nice to say anything really mean while Lian can hear, but I know she doesn’t like her. I’m not even sure if I like her, even though she’s given me no reason not to.
Lian looks at the map. “Point eight is north-east.” She turns on the spot. “This way.”
“That’s the wrong direction,” Toni says.
Lian frowns. “Which way then?”
Toni holds the compass so we can all see. Lian nods then marches off, the map in front of her. Toni glares at me. I sigh and follow Lian. Toni will get over it. All I want is to get this done, and the only way to do that is to start somewhere.
We make our way through the bush. Now and then, I hear the voices of other students. We’ve picked a route that should lead us straight to point eight, but it doesn’t cross paths with any of the other points. I begin to wonder if this plan was the best one, or if we’re wasting time. What if the farthest point has no flag?
“Odds are they’d put a flag at the point that takes the longest to get to,” Toni says.
“Are you a mind reader?” I ask. “Because I just thought about how possible it would be that it didn’t.”
“Have a flag?”
I turn to look at her. “No, a hippopotamus. Yes, a flag.”
“You’re acting really weird today.” Toni studies the compass, and I wonder how she hasn’t fallen over.
I stumble on a rock and mumble a swear word. “Weirder than I usually am? That’s … weird.”
Toni stops, and I almost bump into her. She looks at the compass and frowns. “The needle keeps jumping around.” She glances up and scans the trees around us.
“Can you hear that?” Lian asks.
Greg moves away from us a bit, crunching sticks and leaves. “I can’t hear anything.”
“Stand still, you big oaf.” Toni glares at him.
“Don’t tell me what to do, nerd girl.”
“Is that the best you’ve got?”
“What are we supposed to be listening to?” I ask.
The four of us stand here, silent, with our heads cocked to the side. If someone came across us we’d probably look pretty funny.
A low howl sounds through the trees. Goosebumps rise on my arms.
“What was that?” Lian turns towards the noise.
Before anyone can answer, a crow caws and takes flight, its feathers rustling.
“Crows,” Greg says. “Don’t be scared.”
“I’m not.” Lian clutches the map to her chest
I am. “Since when do crows howl?”
Author K.A. Last
About the Author K.A. Last was born in Subiaco, Western Australia, and moved to Sydney when she was eight. Artistic and creative by nature, she studied Graphic Design and graduated with an Advanced Diploma. After marrying her high school sweetheart, she concentrated on her career before settling into family life. Blessed with a vivid imagination, she began writing to let off creative steam, and fell in love with it. K. A. Last is currently studying her Bachelor of Arts at Charles Sturt University, with a major in English, and minors in Children’s Literature, Art History, and Visual Culture. She now resides in the countryside on the mid-north coast of NSW..
Welcome to the book blitz for SUBHUMAN, the first book in the adult horror series, Unit 51, by Michael McBride. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on his giveaway.
Synopsis THEY ARE NOT HUMAN. At a research station in Antarctica, five of the world’s top scientists have been brought together to solve one of the greatest mysteries in human history. Their subject, however, is anything but human . . .
THEY ARE NOT NATURAL. Deep beneath the ice, the submerged ruins of a lost civilization hold the key to the strange mutations that each scientist has encountered across the globe: A misshapen skull in Russia. The grotesque carvings of a lost race in Peru. The mummified remains of a humanoid monstrosity in Egypt . . .
THEY ARE NOT FRIENDLY. When a series of sound waves trigger the ancient organisms, a new kind of evolution begins. Latching onto a human host—crossbreeding with human DNA—a long-extinct life form is reborn. Its kind has not walked the earth for thousands of years. Its instincts are fiercer, more savage, than any predator alive. And its prey are the scientists who unleashed it, the humans who spawned it, and the tender living flesh on which it feeds . . .
Praise for MichaelMcBride “A fast-paced and frightening ride. Highly recommended for fans of creature horror and the thrillers of Michael Crichton.”—The Horror Review on PREDATORY INSTINCT
“McBride writes with the perfect mixture of suspense and horror that
keeps the reader on edge.” —Examiner
Excerpt #2 Anya screamed and ran to Richards. Grabbed him by the back of the jacket and pulled.
“You have to help me!”
The freezing air buffeted her in the face when she looked up and saw a man only vaguely resembling Armand Scott pounce to the ground from on top of Connor. Snowflakes blew sideways past him and stuck to the walkway between them. His cranial deformity was identical to that of the remains she’d unearthed in Russia, only the physical expression of the flesh was for more terrifying than she could ever have imagined. She’d envisioned its face as being similar to that of modern man, but there was nothing remotely human about Scott’s appearance. Everything about him was alien, from the grayish cast of his skin to the way he twitched and moved in lurches, as though unfamiliar with the mechanics of motion.
Fissures crackled as they raced through the Plexiglas.
The creature scuttled forward and cocked its head, first one way and then the other. Blood dribbled from its mouth when it issued a hiss that sounded like steam firing from a ruptured pipe.
Anya screamed and threw herself to her knees.
She grabbed Richards underneath his arms and shouted with the effort of lifting him. He found his feet, but couldn’t seem to take his eyes off the creature.
“It’s magnificent,” he said.
“Hurry!” Friden shouted.
The stairwell echoed with the drumroll of footsteps hitting the iron steps.
Anya looked back and saw several silhouettes bounding down the staircase toward them. She jerked Richards so hard she nearly sent him sprawling once more, but he regained his balance and stumbled backward with her. She took advantage of his newfound momentum to drag him away from the creature, which lunged forward, cutting the distance between them in half.
A scream from behind her.
She whirled to find Kelly in the opening to the Skyway, her hands clapped over her mouth. When Anya looked back, the creature was within ten feet of them and tensed to make another advance.
More popping sounds from above her. The cracks spread through the walls in her peripheral vision. Chunks of Plexiglas fell to the ground between her and the creature, which released a series of clicking sounds and retreated into the blowing snow.
A loud snap and a cable sang past to her right. The entire bridge shuddered.
“Hurry, Anya!” Friden shouted.
“There’s another one behind us!” Jade screamed.
“Start barricading the stairwell,” Evans shouted.
“And then what?” Jade asked. “We’ll be trapped in here without light or heat or any way to signal for help.”
Anya pulled Richards toward them. If she could just cross the threshold at the end of the Skyway, they could seal the creature on the other side.
Another cable snapped and the floor dropped.
Anya hit the ground on her knees and barely scrambled out of the way before Richards landed on top of her.
The walkway sloped downward toward where the creature crouched. The domed Plexiglas shattered and dropped enormous shards between them. The storm raced through the gap, creating a moving wall of snow between them that nearly concealed the creature as it approached, low to the ground and coming up fast.
A resounding thud.
The Skyway slanted downward, so steeply that Anya started to slide. She grabbed Richards by the back of the jacket with one hand and reached for anything at all with the other.
“Hang on!” Evans shouted and dove for her. He caught her by the wrist and halted her slide.
Another cable snapped and whipped the frozen glass beside them hard enough to shatter the glass and impale her cheek with tiny fragments.
Evans groaned and pulled her up toward the doorway, the seal around which was already buckled and peeling away from the building.
“Give me a hand!” he shouted.
Friden tentatively crawled to Evans’s side, grabbed Richards, and pulled hard enough on the back of his coat to pry him from Anya’s grasp, lightening her burden enough that Evans could drag her up the slope and over the fractured edge.
She scurried past Evans, turned around, and helped the others pull Richards into the stairwell.
Bolts snapped and structural rings disengaged. Bits of Plexiglas cascaded down the bridge toward where the creature crawled toward them.
A chasm opened behind it. Connor’s body slid through, tumbled out over the nothingness, and vanished into the storm.
“Close the door!” Anya screamed.
The creature slapped at the floor with its bare hands as the bridge grew steeper, digging its fingernails into the tiles in an effort to gain traction.
Evans pried the door from the recess until the others were able to help him drag it across the entryway.
The creature shrieked and scrambled uphill, blood dribbling from the gunshot wounds on its chest.
It was nearly upon them when the Skyway broke away from the building.
The creature’s eyes widened. Its nails tore from the cuticles. It screeched and flailed.
The last thing Anya saw before they sealed the door was the expression of sheer terror on its face as it plummeted into the blowing snow.
“Someone help me!” Roche shouted from the landing at the top of the staircase, where he struggled to jerk the door from its slot in the wall. “It’s right behind me!”
Anya rushed for the stairs and hit them behind Kelly and Jade, who were already halfway up. She barely had the strength to climb and had to use the railing to pull herself higher. She nearly lost her balance when her hand slipped in something wet, but she managed to stumble forward and made it to the landing, where the others already had the gap down to a mere foot. A dark shape streaked straight toward the opening from the foyer on the other side, the light reflecting from its inhuman eyes.
“It’s coming!” Anya screamed.
She threw herself against the face of the door and used her shoulder to help the others drive it closed with a resounding thud.
The creature struck it from the other side, hard enough to knock her backward, but she braced herself and leaned into it again.
Kelly screamed beside her as the creature hurled itself against the steel door, over and over.
Until, finally, it stopped.
Anya desperately listened for any indication of what it was doing on the other side but couldn’t hear anything over the combination of their heavy breathing and whimpering.
She pictured Arkaim, with its twin fortified rings, a veritable fortress that should have been able to withstand any siege, reduced to little more than scorched rubble in the middle of a field, and the strange remains she exhumed near its outskirts. She’d made a terrible mistake in assuming that the coneheaded species represented a terminal branch in the human evolutionary tree rather than an off shoot from modern man, one facilitated by something lacking in humanity, something subhuman, the outward physical manifestation of which looked an awful lot like the alien species referred to as Grays.
Only there was nothing fictional about this being.
The creature shrieked and threw itself against the door one final time. It released a torrent of guttural clicks, then retreated into the station. The sound of its footsteps diminished until she couldn’t hear anything from the other side at all.
Anya stepped back and looked at the door. Her hand had left a smear of blood on the steel. She glanced down at her palm, expecting to find a laceration, but the skin was intact.
She took Roche’s flashlight from him and traced the railing down to where she’d slipped. There was blood on the rail, and even more on the wall above it, leading up to a hole in the exposed ductwork. Her heart sank when she gave voice to what they were all thinking.
“We’re going to die in here.”
Author Michael McBride
About the Author Michael McBride was born in Colorado and still resides in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains. He hates the snow, but loves the Avalanche. He works with medical radiation, yet somehow managed to produce five children, none of whom, miraculously, have tails, third eyes, or other random mutations. He writes fiction that runs the gamut from thriller (Remains) to horror to science fiction (Vector Borne, Snowblind) . . . and loves every minute of it. He is a two-time winner of the DarkFuse Readers’ Choice Award. You can visit him at author.michaelmcbride.net.
Welcome to the book blitz for MADE, the second book in the adult romantic suspense series, The Trinity, by J.L. Lora. See below for information the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
Gia Corey’s on a first-name-basis with danger. Nothing can protect her from the madman stalking her every move. Not her vital role in New York’s most powerful cartel, her money or her influence. She can’t run from the cops coming to arrest her for the deaths of six people. She can’t hide from the past that thrusts her into the path of a madman, sets her up for murder, and threatens those she loves.
Noah McLean’s carefree lifestyle as a playboy has come to a swift and violent end. Betrayal is the bullet that forces him to take his place in the family business. Gia’s his anchor, holding him together, helping him accept the role he’s been burdened with. He fell in lust with her beauty and helplessly in love with her heart, but when danger slithers close, he risks everything to keep her safe. But she only trusts two people and Noah isn’t one of them.
The past is never far behind . . .
The monster will stop at nothing to have Gia. He’ll wage a dangerous battle where murder, extortion, and terror are his instruments to tear her way from Noah and her friends. To win the war, Gia must do the unthinkable — embrace her own inner darkness.
Will she slay the monster, once and for all, or will her past break her in the end?
Excerpt #3 Gia undid her belt and the wrap-around dress parted, revealing dark-red panties and bra. The barely-there, lace pieces draped over and wrapped around her hips and breasts as if carefully brushed over her smooth, chestnut skin. A smile played on her full lips, just as natural, twice as feminine, and so bawdy, it had to be at least a little calculated. It shot up the thermostat and sent the blood barreling down Noah’s chest.
His gaze roved over her body, searching for the perfect place to begin exacting his fantasies. He sneaked his hands inside the dress and grasped her by the back of the thighs. She wiggled away.
Her eyes shone. Her mouth vibrant in a playful grin that didn’t belong on one of the most dangerous women in all the U.S. of A. She’d once kidnapped him to send a message to his brother and managed to etch herself in him.
Author J.L. Lora
About the Author J. L. Lora is a Dominican-American author. Her stories explore the dark side of good characters, people living in the gray areas of life while playing the cards life has dealt them. She loves strong heroines and their equally powerful Men. She currently lives in Maryland, pursuing her dream of writing compelling, sexy, can’t-put-down stories about empowered, badass alpha heroines and take your-breath-away alpha heroes.
Welcome to the book blitz for HAVEN, a stand-alone young adult paranormal romance, by RITA-nominated author, Mary Lindsey. See below for information on the book, pre-order links, a couple of exclusive teaser excerpts, and details on her giveaway.
Synopsis “We all hold a beast inside. The only difference is what form it takes when freed.”
Rain Ryland has never belonged anywhere. He’s used to people judging him for his rough background, his intimidating size, and now, his orphan status. He’s always been on the outside, looking in, and he’s fine with that. Until he moves to New Wurzburg and meets Friederike Burkhart.
Freddie isn’t like normal teen girls, though. And someone wants her dead for it. Freddie warns he’d better stay far away if he wants to stay alive, but Rain’s never been good at running from trouble. For the first time, Rain has something worth fighting for, worth living for. Worth dying for.
Author Mary Lindsey
About the Author Mary Lindsey is a multi award-winning, RITA® nominated author of romance for adults and teens. She lives on an island in the middle of a river. Seriously, she does. When not writing, she wrangles her rowdy pack of three teens, two Cairn Terriers, and one husband.
Inexplicably, her favorite animal is the giant anteater and at one point, she had over 200 “pet” Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches. The roaches are a long story involving three science-crazed kids and a soft spot for rescue animals. The good news is, the “pet” roaches found a home… somewhere else.
Welcome to the book blitz for MURDER FEELS BAD, the second book in the new adult mystery series, Empath Detective, by Bill Alive. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on his giveaway.
MURDER FEELS BAD (Empath Detective #2) by Bill Alive
About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited Title: MURDER FEELS BAD Series: Empath Detective #2 Author: Bill Alive Release Date: October 24, 2017 Genre: New Adult Mystery Links:Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU
Synopsis He can feel people’s emotions. And murderers feel super bad.
Mark Falcon, an aspiring detective and (for now) reluctant web developer, has a secret. He can “vibe” other people’s emotions. And when a wedding gets crashed by a seeming suicide, Mark vibes that there’s one aloof groomsman who wasn’t surprised at the death. Problem is, this guy’s also the only current lead for Mark’s website business. And both Mark and I (his trusty sidekick/housemate) are dead broke.
Then, we get our first-ever real detective client … and she’s afraid the wedding killer wants to kill her next.
Exciting, right? Except her reason sounds … delusional. But Mark does vibe that she’s in real danger. Also, she’s super hot. And possibly into me…
Meanwhile, the cops tell us to back off the whole thing, or else. Even when more people in our small Virginia town start dying.
With the cops threatening jail (again), quirky locals turning lethal, and a spiritual crisis on my part which has really bad timing, Mark and I are racing to catch a killer who seems ready to murder anyone…
Murder Feels Bad is the second novel in the Empath Detective mystery series, a new cozy mystery series that totally really happened, but is officially fiction. If you like Janet Evanovich, M. C. Beaton, Deb Baker, and long lists of famous author names, you’ll love this new series that has it all — amateur detectives you’ll love, zany small-town characters, sparkling wit, and a cold-blooded killer you’ll never even suspect.
Excerpt … But you do at least know about the empathy thing, right?
Okay. Super fast, so we don’t bore all the organized readers … my friend, housemate/landlord, and sidekickee Mark Falcon (I’m the sidekick) is the world’s one and only legit empath detective.
He can feel other people’s emotions. Even when he doesn’t want to.
Which is crazy awesome, but on top of that, Mark has chosen to use this superpower to fight crime, vibing the innermost secrets of real-deal murderers and bringing them to justice. So far we’ve been at it for a solid month.
And there were these two suspects, Dr. Jivanta Kistna and, um, this other guy I won’t name in case you didn’t read Book 1 (Murder Feels Awful) yet, and they did a bunch of crazy stuff I can’t tell you about here but the upshot was, they decided to get married.
Like, right away. I don’t know how they pulled that off, since Jivanta’s family turned out to be Catholic and I thought they had rules about that. I think Jivanta wanted to get the wedding in while the Blue Ridge Mountains were still at Peak Autumn Gorgeous.
In a good year, the view out here in rural Virginia is continuously breathtaking. You can’t even (for instance) be running late for a wedding without a lush distant backdrop of mountainous fall foliage, serene in every direction.
Unfortunately, if you are running late for that wedding, the fantastic scenery on a crisp sunny morning just seems wildly inappropriate, even sinister…
[Mark, Pete (the narrator), and Pete’s plus-one, his nurse friend Ceci, barely make it to the wedding on time…]
We grabbed a pew, just as the music fired up and the first awkward couple started the long march.
I didn’t know any of these people, but Ceci was craning to see the entire wedding party with endless enthusiasm. She’d probably know half of them by the end of the reception.
I caught her eye and grinned. She grinned back, sparkling and happy.
Then Jivanta made her entrance.
I hadn’t seen Jivanta since the “suspect party”, weeks ago. Even in civilian clothes, Jivanta’s eyes and smile can induce a mind-altering state. Now, maxed out in makeup and a bridal gown…
… I kind of blissed out.
Except the bliss was steeped with pain, because how could I ever really have a woman like that?
When my trance faded, Ceci was staring ahead, obviously hurt.
I gave an inward sigh. Even though we were totally here as friends, it couldn’t feel great to have your dude gawking at another woman … especially the bride. I realized I’d have to show some finesse here. Not only is Ceci one of my best friends, but I’d been racking up karmic debt to her like crazy, especially lately. The last thing I wanted was to make her feel bad.
I leaned toward her to whisper some smooth reassurance.
Oops. Wrong sight line.
Because in the next pew over, the hottest blonde I’d seen in months stood alone.
She didn’t just stand, she had that curvy lean thing going on, relaxing on one black-hosed leg, where a woman has so much pent-up curvaceous goodness in so many ways that she can’t even stand up straight, she has to slow burn in a sinuous stance of sensuality.
Even as I looked, she turned right toward me, locked my gaze in her own mascara-ringed infinities, and smiled. At me.
And I thought I’d been blissing over Jivanta.
I startled, panicking that I’d been caught again. “What?” I whispered.
“Female emergency,” Ceci hissed.
“What is it?” I whispered. “You can tell me.”
“No I can’t,” she snapped. “Save my seat.”
She slipped out and clacked away down the aisle. She always wobbles a little on those unfamiliar high heels.
With Ceci gone, the pull of the blonde amped up like crazy. I was terrified to look back, terrified not to look back. At the front of the church, the wedding had already begun, but I was in another world entirely.
Beside me, Mark grunted. “Seriously, Pete? Now?”
Have I mentioned that Mark and I have this weird connection? And it’s getting worse. I wouldn’t mind so much if I could vibe his thoughts once in awhile.
“Dude,” I whispered. “Look at her.”
Mark flicked her a glance. “So?”
“So?” I said. “Can you see if she likes me?”
“WHAT?” he snapped. “Did you not hear anything last night from my Akina disaster?”
Oh right. The night before, we’d stayed up too late doing this whole interview thing that turned into a novella. Like, literally, it’s a novella now, you can read it. And it’s free, it’s a mailing-list-only thing — but don’t go get it now if you haven’t read it, I’ll put the link at the end. All you need to know here is that in Mark’s distant past, trying to vibe whether women liked him had led to, um … problems.
“That was different!” I said.
“Sure it’s different,” he said. “You’re fricking here with Ceci.”
“As a friend! And I’m not going to ignore Ceci, I could just get the girl’s number—”
“No! Besides, I’ve got my shields maxed out.”
You remember shields, right? In theory, an empath can reduce the constant emotional onslaught by visualizing some kind of shield. A castle wall, a glowing force field, whatever. But it takes a lot of concentration, and it’s not super reliable, especially (apparently) at keeping out me.
“Why would you have your shields up?” I said. “It’s a wedding!”
“Are you kidding? Weddings are worse than funerals. Every woman’s comparing herself to the bride, every dude’s wishing he could have the bride—”
“Okay, okay, TMI!” I said. “But can’t you just do a quick check? It’ll only take a minute.”
“If you don’t, I’ll just be wondering the whole time.”
Mark eyed me. “You’re going to regret this,” he muttered. “At least try to calm down, you’re causing major interference.”
He closed his eyes and looked focused.
I strained to be calm. I tried to focus anywhere but the woman … anywhere at all…
The priest at the front was super young. He was cracking awkward jokes about him being a new priest and this being his first wedding, and hoping he could say the same for Jivanta and the groom. That one didn’t land so well.
I was trying so hard not to look at Mark and guess what he was reading.
Then he gasped.
And not just any gasp. The kind that made the skin of my neck start to crawl.
I looked. He was darting gazes in every direction like a bloodhound.
“What is it?” I whispered. “Does she secretly hate me?”
“It’s not her,” he snapped. His eyes narrowed. “Something is very wrong.”
The priest made another awkward stab at humor, how he was pretty sure he was more nervous than the bride and groom. He’d woken up that morning praying nothing would go wrong—
Everyone in the entire church jolted. What the hell was that?
The bell. The bell in the old tower was booming, blasting through the church like an air raid siren.
The priest’s smooth face creased with anxiety.
Mark shoved out of the pew and ran for the back. I stumbled after him, my heart thudding.
As we rushed into the lobby, a piercing wail shrieked beneath the bell.
It was a kid, howling.
And beneath that, a new yell of pain was stabbing us, a woman crying for help.
We followed the cries and burst through a side door into an old brick hallway that led to the tower. We nearly collided with the fat, familiar woman I’d seen before, who was still clutching the cute toddler. Both their faces were distorted with terror. The woman was fleeing, and the girl was squirming frantic against her, trying to escape even faster, mashing her mother’s shoulder with some old holy card. Even in that moment, I noted that the card had a delicate border of lace. It was getting crushed.
Then I saw behind them.
The frayed end of a thick rope lay on the old brick floor like the rattle of a snake. The rope wound back to what was left of a woman.
I could only look for a split second.
The body was crushed and obscene, like a broken deer on the side of the road, the red half-eaten carcass stretched across the asphalt. Except this was much worse.
Revulsion clenched me. I could already feel the doom of my future nightmares. I had to look somewhere, anywhere else. I looked up.
High in the tower, in the dizzy upper darkness, the broken rope dangled. The bell was still ringing from the force of the body’s release…
Author Bill Alive
About the Author You know how you keep reading piles and piles and piles of mystery series, and most of them are, like, moderately okay … at least, there weren’t too many typos … and your eyes aren’t actually bleeding … … but then … THEN … every so often … WOW, you’re just smitten.
The style is fabulous, the people are hilarious, the action is fantastic and terrifying and gut-wrenching and you just want to shout, THIS! This right here! Why can’t they all be like THIS?
The next time you find a series like that, could you PLEASE TELL ME? I mean, please tell this Bill Alive author guy? Because otherwise, he’s just going to keep trying to write them.
Which is super fun. See that smile? He’s clearly enjoying himself.
But still. Once in awhile, the guy needs to see how it’s done. What’s your favorite series? He’ll probably love it too.
Welcome to the book blitz for HEALTH NUT CAFE, the first book in the adult contemporary romance series, Shadowing Souls, by Rhonda Frankhouser. See below for information on the book, and an exclusive excerpt.
HEALTH NUT CAFE (Shadowing Souls #1) by Rhonda Frankhouser
About the Book Title: HEALTH NUT CAFE Series: Shadowing Souls #1 Author: Rhonda Frankhouser Publisher: Soul Mate Publishing LLC Release Date: TBA
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Synopsis Imagine recognizing someone you’ve never seen before…
Becka Clemmons’ one true passion is running the Health Nut Café. Awakened every morning by the same nightmare, Becka sees the world through tainted eyes. She’s never believed in fairytale romances until Jonathan Parker walks through the café door one cool, foggy morning. She struggles to understand why this familiar stranger makes her crave things she’s never craved. Solving the mystery of Jonathan is the first thing that has ever taken her focus away from her cafe.
Imagine missing someone you’ve never met…
Jonathan Parker is the idealistic son of old money who knows exactly what he wants. Day after day, he searches to find the missing connection that eludes him, until the morning he lays eyes on Becka. He knows his search is over but the struggle to make her believe has just begun. From that moment, he works to prove to Becka that they belong together.
Will Becka let herself believe? Will Jonathan’s family ruin their chance at love?
Excerpt #1 I cupped the cool, clear water in my hands, letting it filter through the tiny crevices between my fingers. I watched a brilliant colored spider make her way across her water-jeweled web toward an unlucky fly. Above me, the sun shone across the mist, creating a rainbow that rippled in three directions. Lying now on a rock at the edge of the pool, I closed my eyes and dreamt of a time when my life would make more sense.
I must have fallen asleep because I jolted awake when I heard a voice from the landing just above where I lay.
“Becka,” the call echoed off the water and walls. At first I thought I was dreaming, so I lay still and let it come. The familiar voice became clearer when my name was called again, this time from a point closer than the last.
“Becka, are you all right?” The deep baritone whisper was so sensual it made me smile. I didn’t open my eyes until I felt a hand caress my shoulder. Even then, I couldn’t believe I was awake.
“Are you all right?” Jonathan removed his pack and sat next to me on the rock, touching my cheek with the palm of his hand.
I gathered everything inside my heart and soul and tried to move away, feeling caged by the intimate way he leaned over me. The concern in his eyes held me down until he saw that I was okay.
“Thank goodness.” He didn’t move away. “I thought you’d passed out again.”
“What the hell?” I sat up straight and scooted back. My voice was controlled, though my question was demanding. “Did you follow me here?”
“I followed you and Annie from the resort, yes. It was your mother’s idea for me to come to Hawaii. She told me where to find you.”
“Why would she do that?” I stood up and took a step away.
“She thought I should come here and talk to you.” He watched me as I slowly put distance between us.
I remembered my mother’s coy smile when she gave me the airline tickets, and I knew in that instant that he was telling the truth. My mother’s meddling frustrated me. “That figures.”
I gazed over his slightly squared, handsome face. Not handsome in the pretty sense, more the serious, rugged sense. His wavy hair was tucked behind his ears, the mist brightening the lighter strands. The eyebrows of a slightly darker shade were manly, but not too bushy. His skin was bronzed with a fresh tropical tan, and those kissable lips were shadowed by a day-old beard. A satisfied smile broke when he noticed my perusal, but I didn’t stop staring until I caught those eyes, the color of the deepest part of the ocean.
“How old are you?” I asked, finding no noticeable wrinkles. The oddness of the question at that particular moment surprised us both.
“Twenty-nine.” He slowly stood up and moved toward me.
“Oh.” I watched him carefully.
“Does age matter to you, Becka?” He raised his hand.
“Matter for what?”
“Does it matter how old I am if you want me and I want you?” He took another small step, closing the distance. “Besides, your mother already told me you’ve only got me by a few years. I like older women.” He winked and flashed that disarming smile again.
Whoa. I swear Silvy. I held up my hand as I took another step back away from him. He watched this with curiosity, not really seeming to take my retreat as a negative response.
Stepping into the cool water up to my knees, I could think of nothing but escape. Even water was better than the lethal energy vibrating around Jonathan. “Do you always blurt out what you’re thinking?”
“You don’t like to answer questions, do you, Becka?” He moved his pack farther up on the rock, slipped off his hiking boots and socks, and followed me out into the pool, wading closer with every step.
“Your questions have no answers, Mr. Parker.” I watched his taut body press against his T-shirt and cargo shorts. “I have a question of my own, if you don’t mind,” I said, forcing my eyes from his body. “Why are you here? Why did Silvy think we should talk?”
“Because your mother thinks we belong together, and you’re just denying it.” Once again without pretense.
“Oh.” My breath caught. “So the two of you decided ambush would be the best way to convince me of this?” My stomach clenched.
“She just wanted you to stop running for one second and listen to what I have to say. She thought Hawaii would be the perfect place for us to have some time alone together without any distractions.”
“Why wouldn’t she let me in on this grand plan of hers?” I wanted to see how he would explain it though I knew this was how Silvy works.
“Because she figured you wouldn’t approve. She told me that you’re not a believer, that you’d be tough to convince.”
“A believer in what?” I knew exactly what he was referring to, but I wanted to hear him say it. I couldn’t believe Silvy had created another disciple so quickly.
“Doesn’t matter. We’ll talk about that later. Right now, I’d like an answer to the question I just asked you.” He stood directly in front of me.
“I don’t remember the question,” I lied, looking away, unable to move when he tilted my chin up with the touch of his finger. My knees threatened to give out from beneath me as he searched my eyes.
“I know you feel it, too. I can see it.” He whispered the words just seconds before sweeping his lips across my forehead. “It almost hurts, the way it feels.” He spread light kisses over my face, first around my eyes, then along my cheekbones, finally capturing my lips gently, tasting them with the tip of his warm tongue.
At that moment, I was frozen in a fantasy dream, being taken by Prince Charming in a tropical paradise. I could do nothing but respond to his wishes. The taste of him was salt and spearmint, his scent an intoxicating manly smell of soap and sweat. I realized I’d closed my eyes, but I wanted to see. I wanted to be sure this was really happening to me, Becka Clemmons, celibacy’s woman-of-the-year.
When I finally found the courage to open my eyes, I saw him then, for the first time without fear in my heart. This gentle man, whom I knew nothing about, had me completely enraptured. I decided to let it happen, to try and satisfy this desperate feeling inside so it would leave me in peace.
I drew my hands up over his strong shoulders, feeling the hardness of his body against mine. I ran my fingers through his hair as though I’d done it a thousand times before. My breasts now melted against him, hard and demanding.
My mouth opened and I willingly participated in our first real kiss. The kiss sent shocks of excitement through every limb of my body, landing a current squarely at the pit of my stomach, where an incredible ache began to grow. I was prepared to drag him on that rock and ravage him. I’d never had desire affect me the way it did with this man. It made no sense to me, but clarity wasn’t important at that moment.
“Becka.” He pulled away suddenly, leaving me desperate to have him back in my arms, desperate to have him. “Can you feel it? This is not the first time we’ve been together. It feels too natural and real.” His hands held my face between them, his eyes nearly wet with pain.
“Please don’t make this more than it is. It’s just desire, nothing more.” Tears ran down my cheeks for no reason I could grasp. I felt the fear coming back to me, replacing the need with its fury. “I…. I can’t, Jonathan. I don’t understand this.” I took his hands from me, biting back regret as I did so – my stomach sick with emotion.
From above I heard Annie calling, the voice of rescue just in time. I backed away slowly, leaving him there once again, alone to face our connection without me, too afraid to face it with him. It was just too much for me.
Author Rhonda Frankhouser
About the Author Rhonda Frankhouser has been an author with SoulMate Publishing since November of 2016. Her debut novel, Return to Ruby’s Ranch, earned and InD’Tale Magazine RONE Finalist award, and Uncaged Magazine Raven Finalist, and a Books and Benches Reviewer’s Top Pick, Seal of Distinction. Her second release, Health Nut Café, is due out in Fall of 2017. Rhonda lives with her own knight in shining armor in central California, with her two pug puppies, Geddy and Ruby, and their beautiful Labrador, Dutch.