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Cover Reveal – THE UNADJUSTEDS by Marisa Noelle

THE UNADJUSTEDS Cover Reveal

Author Marisa Noelle is revealing the cover to THE UNADJUSTEDS, a young adult dystopian scifi, releasing November 1, 2019. See below for information on the book and preorder links.

THE UNADJUSTEDS by Marisa Noelle

THE UNADJUSTEDS by Marisa Noelle

About the Book
Title: THE UNADJUSTEDS
Author: Marisa Noelle
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian SciFi
Release Date: November 1, 2019
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | The Unadjusteds

Synopsis
Sixteen-year-old Silver Melody lives in a world where 80% of the population has modified their DNA. Known as the altereds, those people now possess enhancements like wings, tails, and increased strength or intelligence. Although Silver’s parents created the nanite pill used to deliver these genetic modifications, Silver is proud of her unadjusted state.

However, when the president declares all unadjusteds must take a nanite, Silver has no choice but to flee the city with her father and some friends to prevent the extinction of the unadjusteds.

With Silver’s mother in prison for treason, Silver’s father is the unadjusteds’ only hope at finding a cure. But time is running out as Silver’s father is captured by the president’s almost immortal army. Vicious hellhounds are on Silver’s trail, and her only chance to recover her father involves teaming up with a new group of unlikely friends before all humanity is lost.

 

 

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THE UNADJUSTEDS

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Author Marisa Noelle

Author Marisa Noelle

About the Author
MARISA NOELLE is a writer of young adult and middle grade novels. She leans towards grounded science-fiction, urban fantasy and paranormal but mental health issues are important to her writing too.

Her first book, THE SHADOW KEEPERS is due out JULY 30TH 2019 and her second, THE UNADJUSTEDS, NOVEMBER 1ST 2019. There is also a forthcoming series, THE MERMAID CHRONICLES: SECRETS OF THE DEEP, due at the end of 2019.

Marisa had plenty of ideas for career and still regrets not moving to Hawaii to train dolphins and pretend the real world didn’t exist. Struggling with anxiety led her to the field of psychology. Heavily influenced by underdog movies such as The Karate Kid she realized her mission in life was to help other people, through any medium. Embarking on a psychology degree, she wanted to emulate her hero, Jodie Foster, from Silence of the Lambs and actually tried to secure work experience at Broadmoor. Thankfully she left the idea of criminal profiling behind, but uses many of these aspects in her novels.

Now a full-time novelist, she lives in Surrey, UK with her husband and three children..

Where to find Marisa Noelle
Goodreads Website | Facebook Twitter | Instagram

 

 

Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – CONVICTION (A New World) by M.D. Neu

CONVICTION Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for CONVICTION, the second book in the adult science fiction fantasy series, A New World, by M.D. Neu. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on his giveaway.

CONVICTION (A New World #2) by M.D. Neu

CONVICTION (A New World #2) by M.D. Neu

About the Book
Title: CONVICTION
Series: A New World #2
Author: M.D. Neu
Publisher: NineStar Press
Release Date: March 25, 2019
Genre: Adult Science Fiction/Fantasy/LGBTQ+
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooksKobo | GooglePlay

Synopsis
A little blue world, the third planet from the sun. It’s home to 7 billion people with all manner of faiths, beliefs and customs, divided by bigotry and misunderstanding, who will soon be told they are not alone in the universe. Anyone watching from the outside would pass by this fractured and tumultuous world, unless they had no other choice. Todd Landon is one of these people, living and working in a section of the world called the United States of America. His life is similar to those around him: home, family, work, friends and a husband.

On the cusp of the greatest announcement humankind has ever witnessed, Todd’s personal world is thrown into turmoil when his estranged brother shows up on his front porch with news of ships heading for Earth’s orbit. The ships are holding the Nentraee, a humanoid race who have come to Earth in need of help after fleeing the destruction of their homeworld. How will one man bridge the gap for both the Humans and Nentraee, amongst mistrust, terrorist attacks and personal loss? Will this be the start of a new age of man or will bigotry and miscommunication bring this small world to its knees and final end?

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Excerpt #2
In this excerpt Todd is getting ready to meet the full nentraee Speaker’s House for the first time. It is a tense moment between Todd and Vi-Narm and a moment where Todd learns that not all the nentraee may think as highly of him as Mi’ko, the vice-speaker, and Mirtoff, the speaker general do. I hope you enjoy:

Todd finished reviewing the details on the ceremony before leaving his quarters.

Ceremony. Bullshit! It’s not a ceremony but an interview in front of the full Speaker’s House. Why didn’t Vi-Narm tell me? She made it out to be no big deal.

He rushed down the hall, his cloak, the Kap’erin, billowed out behind him. Several Nentraee stopped and bowed as he passed. He turned the corner and checked his datapad for directions. His palms were damp. His heart pounded, and not from rushing.

Vi-Narm waited for him outside large ornate doors decorated with carvings of gold and silver. The surrounding light bounced off the metals, creating shimmering circles of light on the floor.

“Todd.” Vi-Narm offered a stiff bow, her cloak shifting about her shoulders.

Damn it.

He should have been more diligent, not assuming that all the reports she gave him were the only ones.

We’ll learn to work together. If I survive this.

“Hello, Vi-Narm,” Todd said as he searched for a hint of a friendly greeting, but her face was stern and her lips a straight line.

“We will go in the council chamber where the Speaker’s House will be in session.” She eyed him coolly. “Once they address us, you will present yourself and answer their questions to the best of your ability. The interview process is simple, so you should have no trouble. But, do not be fooled. This will also decide if they will accept you.”

“Wait. Accept me?” Todd tried to process while catching his breath. “What happens if they don’t approve of me? Mi’ko didn’t say anything about that.”

What happens if I can’t understand their broken English and answer the question wrong? God, I hope it’s in English.

“Then he must believe you will be fine and not want to worry you.” The slightest suggestion of a smile reached her lips.

Sweat broke out on his forehead. Vi-Narm had sent him file after file last night for review. “There was so much information to review, and some of it made no sense until I researched it further, taking more time.” He frowned. “It didn’t help that you’ve been sending me a ton of information. I haven’t been able to sort through it all.”

“It’s not my job to help you sort through what I send.” Vi-Narm’s voice was calm. Cold. “I send the document that are required for all your different tasks. It is your responsibility to organize them and go through them and be prepared.”

Todd shook his head and stared at the floor. He inhaled deeply and met her eyes. “I would’ve appreciated you pointing out the information that was important for today’s events. I could’ve focused on it.”

“Perhaps you should organize your time better, or is that a failing of your character?”

“But I—”

“It was in the report I send to you this morning,” she interrupted. “You did read it? Did you not?”

“Today? This morning? As in, while I was still in bed, or while I was getting ready for this interview?”

Or when I was on the toilet?

Trying not to sound as pissed as he felt, he checked his pocket watch. Since getting it, he kept it with him as a good-luck piece. Now, more than ever, he needed the luck.

“Vi-Narm, how could you send it this morning? I didn’t have a chance—you made it sound like this was only my welcome ceremony. That was my impression from… I didn’t have a chance to…”

She hates me. That’s why she’s doing this. She hates me and is determined for me to fail.

He saw a hint of a smile, and he was sure there was a brief twinkle in her eyes.

God, she’s a total bitch. With luck, she’ll trip and fall on her way into the chamber. That might loosen the stick up her ass.

He took a breath and held back the frown that was stalking his face. “I’ll do my best.”

She watched the chamber doors open. “Let us hope Mi’ko’s faith in you is well placed.”

The soft ticking of his watch reminded him why he was here.

I can do this.

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Get Caught Up on the Series

Book 1: CONTACT
Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

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Author M.D. Neu

Author M.D. Neu

About The Author
M.D. Neu is a LGBTQA Fiction Writer with a love for writing and travel. Living in the heart of Silicon Valley (San Jose, California) and growing up around technology, he’s always been fascinated with what could be. Specifically drawn to Science Fiction and Paranormal television and novels, M.D. Neu was inspired by the great Gene Roddenberry, George Lucas, Stephen King, Alice Walker, Alfred Hitchcock, Harvey Fierstein, Anne Rice, and Kim Stanley Robinson. An odd combination, but one that has influenced his writing.

Growing up in an accepting family as a gay man he always wondered why there were never stories reflecting who he was. Constantly surrounded by characters that only reflected heterosexual society, M.D. Neu decided he wanted to change that. So, he took to writing, wanting to tell good stories that reflected our diverse world.

When M.D. Neu isn’t writing, he works for a non-profit and travels with his biggest supporter and his harshest critic, Eric his husband of eighteen plus years..

Where to Find M.D. Neu
Goodreads | Website | NewsletterFacebook | Twitter

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Giveaway
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Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One) by Ashley and Leslie Saunders

THE RULE OF MANY Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for THE RULE OF MANY, the second book in the young adult dystopian series, The Rule of One, by Ashley and Leslie Saunders. See below for information the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on their giveaway.

THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One #2) by Ashley Saunders

THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One #2) by Ashley Saunders

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: THE RULE OF MANY
Series: The Rule of One #2
Author: Ashley Saunders
Publisher: Skyscape
Release Date: May 3, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
Born to a death sentence in a near-future America, rebellious sisters herald a revolution—if they can survive.

Twins Ava and Mira Goodwin defy the Rule of One simply by existing. The single-child law, ruthlessly enforced by Texas’s Governor Roth, has made the sisters famous fugitives and inspirations for the resurgent rebellion known as the Common.

But the relentless governor and his implacable Texas State Guard threaten that fragile hope, as Roth consolidates his power in a bid for ultimate authority.

As Ava and Mira relinquish the relative safety of their Canadian haven to stand against Roth, new allies arise: Owen, a gifted young programmer, impulsively abandons his comfortable life in a moment of compassion, while Zee, an abused labor camp escapee, finds new purpose in resistance.

The four will converge on Dallas for a reckoning with Roth, with nothing less than their destinies—and the promise of a future free from oppression—on the line.

Disobedience means death. But a life worth living demands rebellion.

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Excerpt #2
MIRA

Limos and luxury cars line the extensive circular driveway, stuffed with partygoers ready for the welcoming bash. Mrs. and Mr. Cross have already arrived with much fanfare from their son and his doting employees. I wonder if Ciro’s sisters are here.

I hear him get on the microphone, introducing his unwitting parents onto the stage of the overflowing banquet hall, the governor of Alberta and the mayor of Calgary looking on from the front row.

Everything’s falling nicely into place. If only the man of the hour would show.

I look at my watch: 7:30 p.m. He’s late. Ava’s knee bounces furiously, as if she can shake out her anxiety.

“He’ll come,” I say.

From our hideout in the corner of the foyer, shadowed and easily overlooked, we have the best seats in the house. A perfect vantage point to see and be unseen. Ava scans the budding festivities through the glass walls on our left. I keep my eyes on the glass windows straight ahead, seeing past the dazzling flares from the cars’ headlights, holding out for the first glimpse of the president.

A string quartet begins to play, and an electric energy pulsates through the hotel, enlivening the crowd around us with a giddy exhilaration, and I can’t help but feel it too. Eager, I spring to my feet. I pace up and down our tucked-away corner, checking the time, watching Emery from across the room, waiting on her signal.

“Do you hear that?” Ava asks. She stares up at the ceiling. I move beside her as we listen to the muffled roar of whirling blades slicing the air somewhere above the building.

“A helicopter,” Ava says.

“He’s here.”

We look to Emery, who stands near the entrance, her gaze locked skyward. Guests file past as she removes a headscarf from her pocket, drapes the silk over her distinctive curls, and pulls it into a tight knot at the back of her neck. She folds her right arm over her chest, our cue to move.

I feel, rather than see, Barend steal into place behind us, our long shadow, as we push to the end of the foyer. Pawel detaches himself from the crowd and crosses our path as he follows Emery out the front door. “Lots of luck,” he whispers earnestly. Like luck has anything to do with it. It’s all up to us.

Our target is the oversized clock that consumes the entire wall alongside the vacant concierge desk. Ava stops before the number six, and we slip behind a false door and stride side by side down an empty staff hallway. Three right turns, two left, a final door, and we’re outside.

There are no lights behind the hotel and no people. The night is chilly and moonless, but we find the footpath we were directed to take and make our silent way to the small grove of trees just twenty yards out.

Ten paces in, Ava and I turn from the path and weave through the evergreens until we spot the narrow clearing that is to be our stage. We position ourselves in its center, shoulder to shoulder, and wait. Somewhere to our right, concealed within the trees and darkness, Barend stands guard.

When told of the plan, Emery immediately authorized the private rendezvous. She knows pleading our case face-to-face with the president is the only way. Cameras and screens provide a barrier, Emery said. The media paints you solely as American rebels. Let him see how human you are. With Pawel at her side, Emery is to meet and escort the president here, while Ciro entertains his parents and guests, keeping them safely ignorant inside the banquet hall.

The minutes tick off, and Ava starts to shiver from either the cold or nerves. Or is that me shivering? Ava and I brought no weapons with us, to show good faith. No guns, no knives. Just us, with our naked conviction and hope.

This could be our last stop, a final end to the endless chase. A place to plan and plot and devise our crucial counterattack.

Ava nudges me with a sharp elbow. She points to the trees in front of us. Two distinct shapes emerge, a faint silhouette floating behind.

“Ready?” I whisper needlessly. Ava tightens her jaw, and I ball my hands into white-knuckled fists. I take a big gulp of air and exhale slowly. My breath comes out in swirling smoke, reminding me of a dragon. There’s a fire inside me, and suddenly I feel warm and calm. One look from Ava and I know she feels it too.

We’re ready.

The outlines become faces and bodies. Emery appears first, then President Moore, with Pawel a few steps behind. I stare at Moore, transfixed, my eyes glued to the man who can grant us refuge.

He stumbles forward, as if his own eyes have not yet adjusted to the dark. I search his every feature, looking for any hint of surprise, or shock, or understanding. But his face, though startlingly attractive in the starlight, is blank. Indifferent.

“President Moore,” Emery says, “this is Ava and Mira Goodwin.” He looks at us cross-eyed, his round eyes squinting as he takes us in. We all stand motionless, awaiting his response.

“You don’t look identical to me,” the president finally states, his thin voice magnified in the still night air. “One of you’s slightly taller, the other rounder.”

The leader of the free world opens with an insult. My first reaction is to defend my identicalness. Surprising, when all I’ve ever wanted is to be seen as different from Ava.

“Sir—” Ava and I speak at the same time.

The president laughs. “Ah, there it is.” The ground spins as he turns to leave. “This conversation will be moved to a different setting. Just the twins and me.”

Barend detaches from the shadows. Pawel and Emery enclose my sister and me. Ava grabs my arm, her grip tight enough to bruise.

“We do not agree to any change—” Emery starts, but Moore shouts over her.

“Security!”

Everything shatters, all plans and expectations smashed to pieces.

A gunshot rings out, then two more.

“Run!” Emery yells.

The last thing I see is Ava’s face, twisted in fear and fury.

Then something covers my eyes. My mouth.

I’m thrown over a bulky shoulder, the deafening sounds of a helicopter growing louder with every footfall. With every one of my muffled screams.

I’m shoved against something solid. I reach out, arms flailing, but there’s no one beside me. Ava.

I feel the chopper lift into the sky. Two spinning blades taking me higher and higher away from Common ground.

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Get Caught Up on the Series

Book 1: THE RULE OF ONE
Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

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Authors Ashley and Leslie Saunders

Authors Ashley and Leslie Saunders

About the Author
Hailing from the suburbs of Dallas, Texas, Ashley Saunders and Leslie Saunders are award-winning filmmakers and twin sisters who honed their love of storytelling at The University of Texas at Austin. While researching The Rule of One, they fell in love with America’s national parks, traveling the path of Ava and Mira. The sisters can currently be found with their Boston terriers in sunny Los Angeles, exploring hiking trails and drinking entirely too much yerba mate.

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Where to Find Ashley and Leslie Saunders
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One) by Ashley and Leslie Saunders

THE RULE OF MANY Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for THE RULE OF MANY, the second book in the young adult dystopian series, The Rule of One, by Ashley and Leslie Saunders. See below for information the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on their giveaway.

THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One #2) by Ashley Saunders

THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One #2) by Ashley Saunders

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: THE RULE OF MANY
Series: The Rule of One #2
Author: Ashley Saunders
Publisher: Skyscape
Release Date: May 3, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
Born to a death sentence in a near-future America, rebellious sisters herald a revolution—if they can survive.

Twins Ava and Mira Goodwin defy the Rule of One simply by existing. The single-child law, ruthlessly enforced by Texas’s Governor Roth, has made the sisters famous fugitives and inspirations for the resurgent rebellion known as the Common.

But the relentless governor and his implacable Texas State Guard threaten that fragile hope, as Roth consolidates his power in a bid for ultimate authority.

As Ava and Mira relinquish the relative safety of their Canadian haven to stand against Roth, new allies arise: Owen, a gifted young programmer, impulsively abandons his comfortable life in a moment of compassion, while Zee, an abused labor camp escapee, finds new purpose in resistance.

The four will converge on Dallas for a reckoning with Roth, with nothing less than their destinies—and the promise of a future free from oppression—on the line.

Disobedience means death. But a life worth living demands rebellion.

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Excerpt #1
AVA

“You’re back,” I say, rising from my bed. Everyone in the room stands, acknowledging Emery as leader of the Common.

She wears her signature look: an unstructured, slightly oversized yellow coat that ends at her knees. Her rich nut-brown hair is short and wild like Einstein’s, and she’s taller than everyone in her small entourage. The more I’ve studied Emery—my mother’s childhood best friend—during my stay here at the Paramount, the more I’ve discovered she’s not the perfectly straitlaced leader I’d expected her to be. Looking closely, I can see the rough edges that hint at the woman she was before having to bear the weight of being the rebellion’s leader. The leftover holes from a double eyebrow piercing above her left eye, the way she bites the inside of her cheeks when she’s angry, as if withholding a fiery reaction. A poorly healed scar just below her collarbone. It all makes me like her even more.

Emery studies the room, her intent gaze passing over all the young faces eager and willing to carry out her orders, however small. We’re all unified in the reason we’re here with the Common, so far from our homes, and I find an unhappy comfort in the shared white-hot pain of loss. And the anger that comes with it.

“It’s good to see you all again,” Emery says. She nods to each of us in greeting. “May I have the room? I need to speak with Ava and Mira.”

The Games Club immediately disassembles, Barend directing everyone out into the hall. He shuts the door and turns on his heel, returning to his post inside our room.

Three members of Emery’s inner circle remain at her side. They’re all Elders, members who’ve been a part of the Common the longest. Their faces are hardened with world-weariness, and although I’ve never spoken to any of them personally, Pawel tells me they’ve each seen the inside of a prison cell more than once.

The door opens, and a young woman who looks a few years over twenty strides with pure confidence into the room. She stands a short distance from the group, unchallenged by Barend. She must be a new recruit, and an important one if she’s included in Emery’s close circle. The young woman’s jet-black hair is pulled back tightly into two French braids, highlighting her dark eyes with their long, intense lashes. If the eyes truly are a window to the soul, hers has taken more than a few beatings.

Mira clasps Emery’s shoulder in welcome before asking, “Did you find him this time? You’re back early—did something go wrong?”

Countless missions to rescue my father have led to nothing but disappointment. Wherever Roth is hiding his former Family Planning Director, he’s making damn sure he’ll never be found.

All four Common Elders lower their heads. Something did go wrong. Horribly wrong.

My stomach drops like a heavy anchor cut loose into the sea.

“What happened?” I demand, stepping forward. His execution date has been moved up. The Guard caught wind of our extraction plans and changed his location . . .

Emery raises her head, biting the inside of her cheeks, hard. “It’s with great sorrow that I have to inform you of your father’s murder,” she tells us straight. “I am sorry that we could not get to Darren in time.”

He’s dead. My father’s dead. I’ve learned to always prepare for bad news, but I wasn’t prepared for this.

Through a haze of salted tears, I lurch backward. Mira catches me, and I hold on to my sister tight—our combined strength the only thing that keeps me from shattering against the floor.

“No, no, no . . . you said Roth wouldn’t kill him!” I cry. “You said he wouldn’t risk turning the people to our side!”

“What about the stay of execution!” Mira says in disbelief.

“The official statement from the Governor’s Mansion is that it was a suicide,” Emery says. “Roth made a speech, weaving a story that Darren hanged himself with his bedsheets during the night, leaving behind a note detailing his great regret for his traitorous crimes against his country and its people.”

A cold panic rushes through my body, and I feel faint. Mira shakes uncontrollably beside me. I turn to my sister, and both our green eyes scream, Lies!

Father would never, never take his own life. He would fight until the bitter end to get back to us.

“The note said his greatest shame of all was raising illegal twin daughters who turned into dangerous traitors themselves.”

Roth is using our own father against us. Bile rises to my throat, and my knees falter.

Emery seizes both our shoulders, pulling us close, making sure we listen.

“We know both the suicide and the note are bullshit. We know just before sunrise, Roth entered Darren’s cell and shot your father in cold blood.”

I try to break free of Emery and my sister. I can’t breathe. I need space for my heartache, but Emery grips my shoulder harder.

“Listen to me. We have the surveillance video. Your father’s killing will not be buried. Roth’s corruption will be exposed—another link in his chain of lies. Your father will continue to help the cause even in death, as your mother did.”

“The video could be fake, too, just like the suicide note. He could still be alive!” I find myself pleading.

The new recruit with the French braids steps forward, shaking her head. Her eyes soften with sympathy. “I wish that were true.”

She pulls something from her jacket’s inner pocket and carefully opens her palm: a metal capsule the size of my fingernail.

Father’s microchip.

“I was held in the same prison as your father,” the young woman explains, her steady voice struggling to break through the fog of despair that separates me from everything else in the room. “While the Common arrived too late to rescue your father, they were able to rescue me.”

Who is this person? Why was she imprisoned, and how did she gain access to my father’s chip? It’s always a never-ending maze of questions.

“Scan the chip,” Mira says, her voice hollow.

Barend produces a microchip scanner from his duty belt—he always seems to have the necessary tool or weapon—and hands the device to Emery to scan.

Ping.

A death record pops up on the chip scanner’s screen:

Name: DR. DARREN JAMES GOODWIN

Status: DECEASED

Cause of death: SUICIDE

Burial location: UNKNOWN

The only thing I have left of my father is this tiny scrap of metal with his blood still on it. Where is his body?

I want to scream.

“It’s Darren’s chip. It has been authenticated,” Emery declares with full conviction. “Skye Lin has been fighting for the Common’s cause for half her life. She turned a Guard at the prison, who gave her the chip and surveillance video in the midst of our rescue mission.”

Skye Lin. The assassin who poisoned two states’ Family Planning Directors and made an unsuccessful attempt on my own father’s life. I’ve never seen her face; after she was arrested in Dallas five years ago, Roth banned images of the teenage murderer across all media outlets. Before Mira and me, criminals were not lionized in Texas; they did not become famous. They were thrown in dark cells and never heard from again.

“I didn’t know your dad was a member of the Common,” Skye insists. “I wasn’t trying to kill him. I was trying to kill his office.” The Family Planning Division.

With that, she turns and walks out, leaving Mira and me drowning in confusion.

“I want to see the surveillance video,” Mira says from beside me.

Taken aback, I turn to face my sister. “You want to watch our father’s murder?”

“I have to see it for myself.” She looks up at me, her eyes red and glassy with anguish. “We were raised on so many secrets, Ava. I just have to see.”

I shake my head. “I can’t.”

As I move to leave the room—I need the open air; the hurt inside me suddenly seems too large for this crowded space—Emery holds up her hand to stop me.

“We leave for the Common’s headquarters in the morning—Paramount Point Lodge. You both are needed there. I can explain more tomorrow, but for now take the time to grieve.” She lowers her head in a respectful bow. “Your father was a brave man.”

Chills run through my body. Rayla had said those same words.

He wants a better future for you both.

I close my eyes and remember Father’s greatest lesson: it takes iron to sharpen iron. Metal bullets forged my father’s death into a cast-iron weight that sits at the bottom of my heart. To be brave like my father, I must endure the painful process of honing. I must become so sharp that no one can touch me or mine again.

“Show me the surveillance video,” Mira demands once more.

“It will not be easy to watch, but the choice is yours to make,” Emery says.

Visions of my father tied helplessly to a chair, Roth standing over him with a gun, a smug smile on his lips . . .

No! I rip open my eyes and push past Emery, away from my sister. Barend gets out of my path, allowing me to throw open the door, and I stumble into the hall alone. Without any clear direction in mind, I head toward the stairwell. Anger clouds my vision; my knees are shaky, and I lean on the wall to stay standing. My entire world feels upside down, spinning out of control.

Bam. My shoulder slams into someone, jolting my body back upright.

“I’m sorry,” I say automatically.

But sharp-edged things don’t apologize. They just cut right through. I steel myself and keep going, not looking back, continuing to drag my wobbly legs down the hallway to the exit.

“No, I’m sorry,” a tentative voice says behind me. Pawel. “I’m sorry about your dad. I just heard the news.” Intensity seeps into his words. “At least he died for a reason. You can be proud.”

His words shoot at me like bullets, a gut shot with no exit wound, and I stop short. I wrap my arms around my waist—like that could stop the bleeding—and peer inside the room Pawel just exited.

A group of kids, no older than eleven or twelve, huddle on the floor around a tablet screen. Barend would be livid if he caught them with this smuggled technology. As I wonder fleetingly what their punishment would be for risking the Common’s safety, one of the kids’ heads tilts to the side, giving me a full view of the screen.

My father’s face is splashed across an underground virtual newscast. The kids watch, enraptured as a computer-generated anchor with blue hair and violet eyes gives a breathless account of how the disgraced Family Planning Director shockingly took his own life out of shame.

“My brother says it’s all a conspiracy,” a girl with a high ponytail says. It’s Ellie, Pawel’s adopted sister. “A Goodwin would never give up.”

Another girl spies me standing in the doorway, her breath catching in her throat. She nudges the boy sitting beside her, and the entire group turns to stare at me, their mouths slightly open in reverence.

“Our parents sacrificed themselves for Ellie and me too,” Pawel says quietly. A crushing sadness marks his face at the memory. Pawel’s four-person family was illegal, even if Ellie wasn’t related by blood. Whatever hardships he experienced that led him to the Common will haunt him the rest of his life.

All at once my sharp edges soften with empathy.

I flick my gaze back to my own father on the newscast. They chose a photograph of him in his stately dress uniform. He looks strong and proud and so violently alive it hurts.

I scan the youthful faces of my unexpected audience. Ellie rises and holds out her forearm, fist curled into a tight ball, like Mira and I did at the end of our hijacked newscast. She’s petite but fierce, her oval-shaped hazel eyes reflecting her tremendous appetite for defiance at such a young age.

Everyone around her stands and does the same.

Tattoos, drawn with identical dark ink, cover their right wrists, each one a unique emblem of their own resistance: a charging bull, two thick parallel lines, a scorpion ready to strike, a beautifully patterned sun with a face inside.

Next to me Pawel lifts his shirtsleeve, revealing his own tattoo of a tree with thick roots sheltering the letter E.

Our spark worked. The flame of revolution spread like wildfire just as Rayla said it would, and now even the next generation can feel its burn.

My heart races wild inside my chest. I hold down my wrist, fist clenched.

“Resist much,” I say.

“Obey little,” their voices answer in unison.

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Get Caught Up on the Series

Book 1: THE RULE OF ONE
Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

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Authors Ashley and Leslie Saunders

Authors Ashley and Leslie Saunders

About the Author
Hailing from the suburbs of Dallas, Texas, Ashley Saunders and Leslie Saunders are award-winning filmmakers and twin sisters who honed their love of storytelling at The University of Texas at Austin. While researching The Rule of One, they fell in love with America’s national parks, traveling the path of Ava and Mira. The sisters can currently be found with their Boston terriers in sunny Los Angeles, exploring hiking trails and drinking entirely too much yerba mate.

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Where to Find Ashley and Leslie Saunders
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Young Adult Book Review + Giveaway – ALIEN MINDS (Dimension Drift) by Christina Bauer

ALIEN MINDS Blog Tour

ALIEN MINDS (Dimension Drift #1) by Christina Bauer

ALIEN MINDS (Dimension Drift #1) by Christina Bauer

4 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
DIVERGENT meets OCEAN’S EIGHT in this urban fantasy heist!

On my seventeenth birthday, I wake up in the hospital to find I just survived a sketchy but terrible accident. My parents stand by my bedside—both are beautiful, wealthy, and super-nice. They tell me that once I leave the hospital, I’ll attend the prestigious ECHO Academy, where I’ll churn out equations for the government along with my mega-smart peers.

So, I’m living the perfect life.

Then why does everything feel all wrong?

My parents, my house and even ECHO Academy…none of it fits. Plus, what’s up with Thorne, my brooding yet yummy classmate who keeps telling me I need to remember my true past, which seems to have included a lot of us kissing? That’s one thing I’d really like to remember, except for the fact that I’m pretty sure Thorne is hiding a ton of nasty secrets of his own, including the fact that he may not be from this world. But considering how my own past seems alien to me, it’s not like I can judge. Plus, Thorne has dimples. That’s a problem.

And worst of all, why does it feel so yucky to work on these calculations for the government? It’s all supposed to be part of ECHO, but my heart tells me that I’m helping something truly terrible come to pass. Thorne seems to think that kissing him again will release my real memories.

Maybe it’s time to pucker up.

“Appealing and engaging. Love the strong female character!” – Arlene’s Book Reviews

This new series is perfect for: fans of urban fantasy, action & adventure, cool science, evil corporations, forbidden romance and hot new classmates who may or may not be aliens.

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My Review
I finally dove into Christina Bauer’s sci-fi/fantasy adventure series with ALIEN MINDS. While this is book 1 in the Dimension Drift series, the characters and worlds are well-established from other, connected, series. That is evident from the opening chapter. Though I’m new to this world, Bauer does a great job of balancing the plot with world building so that even a newbie like me can grasp the nuances of the setting without being bogged down by details that detract from the story. When 17-year-old Meimi awakes with no memories, she knows something is off about the story she’s been told. She may not remember who she is or anything about her past, but she’s sure the doctor standing in front of her is evil. Just as she’s sure the tall, brooding guard, Thorne, assigned to her means something to her. She just isn’t sure what. When the doctor slates millions of people for execution for being “undesirable” and demands Meimi help him accomplish his goals, she’s determined to thwart him while pretending to go along with his plan. This sets up a wicked game of deception that rivals some of the best heist movies I’ve seen.

Plot
The story revolves around Memi’s plans to prevent the destruction of innocent human lives while remaining alive herself. Told in dual points of view from Memi’s and Thorne’s perspectives, we see flashes of Meimi’s life before her mind wipe through Thorne, and insights into how she thinks through hers. Despite her memory loss, she is who she is, and her spunk and intelligence shine through. Teaming up with people from Meimi’s past, they plan the ultimate act of defiance and bravery to save the world. Strong subplots include Meimi’s battle to regain who she is and Thorne’s battle to win back her feelings for him.

Characters
Meimi is a strong protagonist who inherently knows right from wrong and will risk everything to do what is right. Thorne is a tortured soul with a secret – he’s an alien, and oh yeah, son of the ruler of the omniverse. These two shouldn’t work, yet they are linked in a way that is more than just mutual attraction. Meimi is witty, sarcastic, and driven. Thorne is dark and brooding. Both are well-developed and a joy to read. The evil Dr. Godwin is more of a cartoonish character, though. Evil for the sake of evil. While he makes for a good bad guy, he’s not as developed as he could have been. Supporting characters, twins Zoe and Chloe, Fritz, and the others are more complex and nicely round out the cast.

World Building
This is where the story really shines. The alien world, dystopian Boston, alternate dimensions, and the technology are extraordinarily well constructed, and the writer’s ability to paint vibrant pictures with her words brings this amazing omniverse to life.

What I Enjoyed About ALIEN MINDS
1. World Building.
 Some of the best world building I’ve read in a long time.

2. Meimi. Her sarcastic wit is a blast to read.

3. Tech. The technology that populates this world is as engaging as the characters.

4. Sticking it to the Man. Their goal of beating Godwin at his own game is something we all can root for.

5. Thorne. His devotion to Meimi is both sweet and swoony.

Bottom Line
A fun, action-packed adventure with amazing world-building and fun characters.

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

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About the Book
Title: ALIEN MINDS
Series: Dimension Drift #1
Author: Christina Bauer
Publisher: Monster House Books
Release Date: April 23, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian Fantasy/SciFi Romance
Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

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Author Christina Bauer

About the Author
Christina Bauer thinks that fantasy books are like bacon: they just make life better. All of which is why she writes romance novels that feature demons, dragons, wizards, witches, elves, elementals, and a bunch of random stuff that she brainstorms while riding the Boston T. Oh, and she includes lots of humor and kick-ass chicks, too.

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

Be the first to know about new releases from Christina by signing up for her newsletter

Where to Find Christina Bauer
Goodreads | Website | Newsletter | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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Cover Reveal – MIMIC (The Prodigy Chronicles) by C.L. Denault

MIMIC Cover Reveal

Author C.L. Denault is revealing the cover to MIMIC, the second book in her young adult scifi dystopian romance series, The Prodigy Chronicles, releasing March 22, 2019. See below for the cover, information on the book and series, the book’s trailer, and a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR.

MIMIC (The Prodigy Chronicles #2) by C.L. Denault

MIMIC (The Prodigy Chronicles #2) by C.L. Denault

About the Book
Title: MIMIC
Series: The Prodigy Chronicles #2
Author: C.L. Denault
Release Date: March 22, 2019
Genre:
 Young Adult Science Fiction Dystopian Romance
Links: Goodreads

Synopsis
In 2012, one cycle of an ancient calendar system came to a close. Humanity predicted its downfall, but it wasn’t the end of their evolutionary climb. It was the beginning.

Willow Kent is discovering that life as a second-phase prodigy comes at a price. Trapped in the London Core, her choices are limited, made difficult by her forbidden romance with Reece and the presence of a new commanding officer who establishes harsh rules. With unpredictable skills and a growing distrust in her birth parents, she is struggling to play the Core’s game. But when opportunity arises in the form of a mysterious shapeshifter, Willow realizes there’s more to her own evolution than meets the eye. She soon learns that keeping secrets is a key move, and the more dangerous they are, the greater her need to evolve into the powerful prodigy nature intended her to become.

But those closest to her have their own secrets, and her status has made her an easy target for betrayal. Who will she turn to, when nothing is as it seems?

 

 

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Trailer

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Get Caught Up on the Series

Book 1: GAMBIT
Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & NobleiBooksKobo

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Author C.L. Denault

Author C.L. Denault

About the Author
C.L. Denault is a speculative fiction writer who loves dreaming up tales of adventure and intrigue. A former systems analyst, she gave up her nerdy code-writing skills to care for her family (including a son with special needs), and currently lives among the vast stretches of cornfields in Illinois.

Writing and working out are her biggest passions, along with drinking coffee and watching sci-fi. When she’s not hanging out with her husband and kids, she can usually be found at a library or tucked away in the shadowy corner of a hip coffeehouse. She’s also been glimpsed sneaking into her garage, late at night, to work on her time machine.

She enjoys connecting with people—especially those from other planets, nearby dimensions, and the future. To find her, just visit her website or social media pages. Or use a Stargate. Whichever is easiest. .

Where to find C.L. Denault
Goodreads Website | Facebook Twitter | Instagram

Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – APOCALYPSE FIVE (Archive of the Fives) by Stacey Rourke

APOCALYPSE FIVE Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for APOCALYPSE 5the first book in the young adult science fiction series, Archive of the Fives, by Stacey Roarke. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

APOCALYPSE FIVE (Archive of the Fives #1) by Stacey Rourke

APOCALYPSE FIVE (Archive of the Fives #1) by Stacey Rourke

About the Book
Title: APOCALYPSE 5
Series: Archive of the Fives #1
Author: Stacey Rourke
Release Date: February 12, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Synopsis
Good luck and have a pleasant apocalypse. 

The end of the world is coming. How or when, scientists can’t agree upon. For decades, Earth’s best line of defense has been a team of young soldiers known as the Apocalypse Five, forced into virtual reality simulations to train for Doom’s Day. But, this is no game. Death on the grid is brutally final and calls up the next in a long line of cadets.

Stationed aboard the AT-1-NS Starship, the A5 are celebrities thrust into the limelight by a calling they didn’t choose. All it takes is one unscheduled mission, showing seventeen-year-old team leader Detroit a harsh and unfathomable reality, to shake the A5’s belief in all they thought they knew. After questioning people with the power to destroy them, the team is framed for a crime they didn’t commit and marked for death. Now, the hunt is on.

Can the Apocalypse Five expose the truth the starship would kill to keep hidden? Or, will their bravery end in a public execution?  

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Excerpt #3
Lansing’s lightning-fast fingers clicked over the keys, typing the programming coordinates handed down to her from the designers into the simulator. With her digital eyes transfixed on the screen, the Undertaker’s tone was even more monotone than usual as she read back the data presented. “Solo mission constructed by designer DB3245. No added weaponry. Countdown begins in T minus three minutes. Team Member Detroit should be suited up and beginning pod safety protocols.”

After zipping up her Lycra bodysuit, Detroit kissed the lucky piece of flint—a souvenir from her first mission—that dangled from a silver chain around her neck. Hands on the edge of the pod, she heaved herself into her well-traveled chariot for one. “Team Member Detroit is suited up and initiating countdown protocol,” she confirmed. Acting primarily on muscle memory, she typed in the same codes she had countless times before. “So, a solo mission, huh? Apparently, I have a problem area that needs work.” 

“Respiratory functions will be online in 3 … 2 … 1.” A click and steady hum punctuated Lansing’s statement, announcing the activation of Detroit’s oxygen filtration system. “I have no prior knowledge of the reasoning behind this chosen mission. It could be preparing you for a worst-case scenario of every one of your teammates being exterminated. Or, it could be punishment for scheduling an unscheduled press conference and then failing to appear.” Only then did Lansing’s head jerk Detroit’s way with a robotic twitch. “My apologies. That was one of those moments, wasn’t it? The kind you hate when I fail to utilize my human emotion programming and come across as a—”

“A robot slag?” Detroit finished for her, taking a hit off her oxygen tank just to make sure Augusta’s issue wouldn’t be repeated. Finding it in working order, she let the mask fall to her chest until needed. “It’s a character flaw I’ve learned to love you in spite of. That said, there’s no need to sugarcoat the solo gig. I’m being put in an A-5 timeout until I learn from my mistakes … whatever the designers feel they may be.” 

Robotic gears whirring, Lansing gave a confirming nod and returned her attentions to the computer screen. “You’re in a timeout, and I’m an emotionless robot. Remind me how it was we found ourselves in the lead position of the Apocalypse Five?”

“Far as I can tell?” Detroit tucked one arm, then the other, under her safety harness and buckled it into place. “It’s either my sparkling personality, or your stellar tits.” 

“The curve of my breastplate is metal and completely ornamental.”

“So is my personality. That can’t be it, then.”  

Never forget: We are alive within mysteries. Wendell Berry.” Lansing’s expression softened to the closest she came to a smile. “Return trajectory routed and programmed for autopilot. According to my calculations, there is no evidence of yesterday’s problematic situation repeating.”

The pod was beginning to close, but Detroit’s hand darted out to stop it. She could feel her face instantly bloom a bright tomato-red, and her shocked squawk landed a few octaves higher than anything resembling normal. “Situation? There was no situation. Why would you think there was a situation?”

Lansing glanced up with her head tilted in confusion, her hands hovering over the keys. “Because Augusta’s breathing apparatus malfunctioned. Some may consider that potential threat of fatality a bothersome turn of events.” 

“Oh, that.” Retracting her hand, Detroit settled back into her seat and silently cursed her lack of composure under the slightest questioning. “Yeah, that simple glitch could have ended much worse. Lucky thing we got him out of there in time.”

“I concur,” Lansing seconded. “Pod lid closing … if you allow it to this time. Kindly don’t die out there, or I’ll be melted down and sold for parts.” 

“You would make a handsome bar stool, or maybe some form of abstract art. But, I’ll do my best,” Detroit lobbed back before the lid slid into place and sealed with a click. 

Others might have considered their sign-off dismissive. To Detroit and Lansing, it was the equivalent of a hug. Okay, maybe not that cozy. More like a handshake of solidarity, signifying neither wanted the other dead or repurposed.  

“Weapons system, online.” Detroit rattled off her readouts as she fixed her oxygen mask into place. “All sequences are go. I am ready for the sweet serenade of my robot mistress.” 

“Welcome, Detroit,” the emotionless recording kicked in. 

“And there she is.” Detroit sucked air through her teeth, biting her lip in pantomimed desire. “She sounds saucy tonight. What do you think she’s wearing?” 

“Focus, please,” Lansing chimed in her ear. 

The crackle in their connection prompted Detroit to try another frequency for safe measure. “Yes, ma’am. I got a little static on the line. Can you hear that?”   

“Today’s mission will be a solo one,” the robotic recording continued. “The target, as always, is to prevent any major catastrophes, with minimal casualties. Good luck and have a pleasant apocalypse.”

Lansing’s attempt at a response was little more than a series of crackles, pops, and hisses. 

“I’ve got no sound in here,” Detroit grumbled as the thrusters engaged and flung her against her seat. “Good thing I’m not going solo into this mission, or that would be downright disturbing … oh, wait.” 

Sti … th … sion,” sizzled through the line. 

Filling her lungs with a steadying breath, Detroit ticked through the protocols for faulty system scenarios, trying not to link this critical error with Auggie’s. There was the chance this was intended to be a system failure simulation. If that was the case, whatever lesson the designers felt they needed to teach her meant getting back to basics. 

Fighting against the inertia pinning her to her seat, Detroit completed a final systems check. “Everything else is functioning properly. I just don’t have ears. If you can hear me, Lansing, keep an eye on the calibrations on return. You’re going to have to make them as needed. I’ll be no help making adjustments.” 

Clicking her earpiece off to spare herself its haunting hiss, Detroit let her head fall back and closed her eyes. “If this is a slap on the wrist for something, there had to be a less ominous way to do it,” she muttered to the stifling silence. 

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Author Stacey Rourke

Author Stacey Rourke

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

RONE Award Winner for Best YA Paranormal Work of 2012 for Embrace, a Gryphon Series Novel
Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012
Turning Pages Magazine Winner for Best YA book of 2013 & Best Teen Book of 2013
Readers’ Favorite Silver Medal Winner for Crane 2015
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Where to find Stacey Rourke
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – CONTACT (A New World) by M.D. Neu

CONTACT Book Blitz

Welcome to the blog tour for CONTACT, the first book in the adult science fiction fantasy series, A New World, by M.D. Neu. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on his giveaway.

CONTACT (A New World #1) by M.D. Neu

CONTACT (A New World #1) by M.D. Neu

About the Book
Title: CONTACT
Series: A New World #1
Author: M.D. Neu
Publisher: NineStar Press
Release Date: January 21, 2019
Genre: Adult Science Fiction/Fantasy/LGBTQ+
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Synopsis
A little blue world, the third planet from the sun. It’s home to 7 billion people with all manner of faiths, beliefs and customs, divided by bigotry and misunderstanding, who will soon be told they are not alone in the universe. Anyone watching from the outside would pass by this fractured and tumultuous world, unless they had no other choice. Todd Landon is one of these people, living and working in a section of the world called the United States of America. His life is similar to those around him: home, family, work, friends and a husband.

On the cusp of the greatest announcement humankind has ever witnessed, Todd’s personal world is thrown into turmoil when his estranged brother shows up on his front porch with news of ships heading for Earth’s orbit. The ships are holding the Nentraee, a humanoid race who have come to Earth in need of help after fleeing the destruction of their homeworld. How will one man bridge the gap for both the Humans and Nentraee, amongst mistrust, terrorist attacks and personal loss? Will this be the start of a new age of man or will bigotry and miscommunication bring this small world to its knees and final end?

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Excerpt #2
The scene is a confrontation scene between one of the alien generals, Gahumed, and the leader of the alien race, Mirtoff. For me this scene is a lot of fun and it shows off these two powerful women who aren’t afraid to stand their ground:

Taking a seat at the table, Mirtoff waited for Gahumed to join her. “I assume you’re here to talk about my suggested plan for dealing with these humans?” Gahumed almost hissed out the word ‘humans.’

“I am.” Mirtoff pulled out her datapad and loaded the information, then swiped it over to the largest of the monitors on the wall. The image started with the Earth rotating. Once it hit the area of the planet she wanted, she zoomed in on a small island continent. The image moved in closer to a smaller island mass off the island continent’s coast. “Your proposal to occupy the area known to the humans as New Zealand is dangerous.”

“I don’t agree.” Gahumed rested her hands on the table. “I picked that area with defense in mind. It’s remote. The land mass is small enough, and we can easily control the surrounding space. They have a limited population of four point six million that can be relocated to Uztralia—”

“I believe they call it Australia,” Mirtoff interrupted.

“Regardless, they share a similar language and background. I don’t see an issue.” Gahumed brought up demographic information of her own. “New Zealand can be made to become sustainable for our needs and allow us business options with the humans.”

“A forced relocation won’t work.” Mirtoff’s ears started to swell and warm up.

Relax. Don’t let this plan anger you.

Mirtoff took a breath. “How will that help us build a positive enough relationship with them so we can conduct trade?”

“We could offer them helium-3 for the territory,” Gahumed countered.

“And what if the Australians don’t want four point six million new humans?”

“Why not?” Gahumed smirked. “They have the land mass, and from the reports, the two territories have good relations.”

“The issue, as I understand it, is none of Earth’s governments are willing to give up their territory to us—”

“Madam Speaker,” Gahumed interrupted, “they are a barbaric species that fight among themselves for land all the time.”

“And how would we be any different?”

“It’s not the same thing,” Gahumed said.

It’s exactly the same thing. You don’t want to see it. You’re a hypocrite.

“We can’t trust them.” Gahumed swiped her hands over her datapad. “They won’t work with us in peace and certainly we can’t trust them to be truthful with their motives. Despite what you and the vice speaker may think. We can easily go there and use our military to take over the area. Then we move the humans and make reparations.” She picked up her datapad. “Denes and my staff have run the scenario based on the information we’ve gathered. The losses were negligible.” She swiped the data up to the monitor.

“Yes, General Gahumed, I’m sure the work of your son is admirable and perfect.” She rubbed the tips of her ears. “Just like him—”

“Are you mocking the abilities of my son? He is a fine male with a brilliant military mind. He is the type of male that every Nentraee of his gender should strive to be.” Her full lips pulled into a stiff line, and her ears started turning an angry shade of blue.

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Author M.D. Neu

Author M.D. Neu

About The Author
M.D. Neu is a LGBTQA Fiction Writer with a love for writing and travel. Living in the heart of Silicon Valley (San Jose, California) and growing up around technology, he’s always been fascinated with what could be. Specifically drawn to Science Fiction and Paranormal television and novels, M.D. Neu was inspired by the great Gene Roddenberry, George Lucas, Stephen King, Alice Walker, Alfred Hitchcock, Harvey Fierstein, Anne Rice, and Kim Stanley Robinson. An odd combination, but one that has influenced his writing.

Growing up in an accepting family as a gay man he always wondered why there were never stories reflecting who he was. Constantly surrounded by characters that only reflected heterosexual society, M.D. Neu decided he wanted to change that. So, he took to writing, wanting to tell good stories that reflected our diverse world.

When M.D. Neu isn’t writing, he works for a non-profit and travels with his biggest supporter and his harshest critic, Eric his husband of eighteen plus years.

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Where to Find M.D. Neu
Goodreads | Website | NewsletterFacebook | Twitter

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Book Blitz – Teaser + Giveaway – UNEXPECTED DEMON (Unexpected) by Layla Stone

UNEXPECTED DEMON Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for UNEXPECTED DEMON, the second book in the adult science fiction romance series, Unexpected, by Layla Stone. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive teaser, and details on her giveaway.

UNEXPECTED DEMON (Unexpected #2) by Layla Stone

UNEXPECTED DEMON (Unexpected #2) by Layla Stone

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: UNEXPECTED HOSTAGE
Series: Unexpected #2
Author: Layla Stone
Release Date: January 31, 2019
Genre:
Adult Science Fiction Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
I never liked her kind before. Rank climbing bastards. Liars. Cowards.

The second I see her walk into the captain’s meeting, I want to dislike her but I can’t. I’m captivated by her smooth curves, long thick hair and her confidence. I want to taste her sweetness.

She’s got guts, smarts and I want her to come willingly to my bed. Except, she doesn’t respond to my charm. The female is nothing like I expect.

She’s also taken unnecessary risks.

My mission is on the line. I have people to save and a team to protect.

When I get my hands on her, she better be prepared for what a night in my bed entails… and she better promise never to leave the ship without me again.

Note to readers:  If you are looking for a Steamy Sci-Fi Romance with a strong and obsessive male with an equally strong and confident female, then this book is for you.

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UNEXPECTED DEMON Teaser

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Get Caught Up on the Series:

Book 1: UNEXPECTED HOSTAGE
Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Author Layla Stone

Author Layla Stone

About the Author
Layla Stone is a Sci-Fi Romance author who is passionate about writing and reading romances. Her books are a blend of science fiction, romance and action adventure.

A business coordinator by training and a bookworm at heart, Layla makes her home in Southern California, where she lives with her husband, two children, and a trio of fur babies.

You can find more information about her characters and their races at www.authorLaylaStone.com

To learn more about Layla, her life and writing process, copy and paste this link into your browser and join her monthly newsletter.

 

Where to Find Layla Stone
Goodreads | Website | NewsletterFacebook | Twitter | Amazon

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Giveaway
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Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – SPECULAR (IXI Comics) by L.K. Brooks-Simpson

SPECULAR Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for SPECULAR, the first  book in the young adult science fiction/superhero adventure series, IXI Comics, by L.K. Brooks-Simpson. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on his giveaway.

SPECULAR (IXI Comics #1) by L.K. Brooks-Simpson

SPECULAR (IXI Comics #1) by L.K. Brooks-Simpson

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: SPECULAR
Series: IXI Comics #1
Author: L.K. Brooks-Simpson
Release Date: August 16, 2018
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction Superhero Adventure
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
The first installment of the IXI COMICS series by author L.K BROOKS-SIMPSON

This novel is of the fantasy/superhero fiction genre and tackles some important implications of mental health and Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID).

Imagine being afraid to fall asleep in fear that you will not wake up to the life you know. This is exactly what Tre Moon experienced at nine years old. He awakes to his second dissociative identity having set his house aflame. With his home ruined and his parents murdered at his own hands, he is sentenced to trial for a life sentence. Young Tre Moon is forced to walk a path that will change his life forever.

When seventeen year old Tre comes into contact with a prohibited substance called Colloidal Supersilver his life will change forever when he finds out he has the ability to change how light refracts from his body. His new powers come with new challenges to an already complicated life, having battled Dissociative Identity Disorder for the majority of his youth.

Follow the origin story of IXI COMICS first hero as he becomes Indiana’s newest vigilante, Specular! In a city full of crime, recession, drug underlords and other mysterious vigilante’s, the legend of Tre Moon will unfold, all the while, his dark past tries to catch up with him…

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Excerpt #1
Word of the murder of Natalie and Cecil Moon quickly went around the city of Signot, Indiana. Word started in the Hive Borough, where the Moon residence was situated, and continued to the outer reaches of the huge city. Inevitably, word of the incident also reached local news, then the legal system. With no lawyer, witness or irrefutable evidence to defend him, in June of the year 2003, Tre Moon was convicted of murder on two counts and given a mandatory life sentence. He was to serve his sentence in Signot’s Juvenile Detention Centre until he was eighteen years of age. When he became of age he was to be transferred to Hallows Island; an isolated, maximum security prison for America’s worst offenders. At the age of nine Tre had everything taken away from him. His mother. His father. His best friend. His home. His hopes. His freedom. His innocence.

Throughout all his loss, one thing did remain however, the voice inside of his head. The voice provided him with constant company during the first year of his sentence, a feature that he reckoned, ironically, kept him from falling further into insanity. Besides, he knew for a fact that no one else inside the detention facility had an ominous counsel or a savage alias to handle the rough aspects of Juvenile Hall. And it got very rough. During the first five years of his sentence, Tre became very familiar with the offenders’ lifestyle. On any day he was liable to see: fistfights followed by revenge in the form of knives formed of whatever abrasive material one could find. Gym practice and betting championships with all types of tactics and juvenile algorithms employed to get the advantage. Religious sessions and prep talks were held in improvised lecture halls. Readings and plea deals, which led to weaklings, robbed of their free meals. Tre Moon was not like the offenders around him and so he tried to keep to himself, however he found it increasingly hard to do this. His reputation as a cold murderer preceded him and ego grown individuals began to pick fights with him to establish the pecking order. The aphorism ‘you are a product of your environment’ proved to be true time after time. The pecking order changed, Tre picked up weights and developed popping pectorals to handle whatever problem came his way, or in the case of his phantom, to compensate for the inmates that short-changed them back in the day. Tre was not always alone though. In the third year of his sentence a boy one year older than him came into the detention centre. The boy’s name was Chevron and allegedly was a part of the Block Boys Tre once new, who were now a full-fledged gang. He immediately gravitated toward Tre, giving the young boy some further reputability inside the detention centre. Though Block Boy Chevron’s sentence was a feeble year compared to Tre’s lifetime sentence, even when he left, word of Tre’s associations remained. He was not proud of it, but he took advantage of the respect nonetheless. With this new freedom, Tre was able to reform back to his former ways somewhat. He took intensive studying sessions in his free time and though he always knew he had a fascination for science, he discovered that he had a pension for physics in particular. His academic progress became hard to ignore and so he was given his age range exams to take, only to pass them all. This was a notable and uplifting achievement for the young teenager who was conditioned to believe his life would play out in the darkness from the fading light of his former life.

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Author L.K. Brooks-Simpson

Author L.K. Brooks-Simpson

About the Author
L.K. Brooks-Simpson is a native of London, England. He is an English Literature graduate and Film Production student.

Aside from his creative ventures, he is a strong supporter of philanthropy. He cites his biggest influences as J.R.R. Tolkien, Sanyika Shakur, J.K. Rowling, Tsugumi Ohba, Stan Lee and Maya Angelou, among many others.

Three sentences he would use to describe himself – A book is for the mind. Travel is for the heart. Family is for the soul.

Lara has always considered himself a student of literature and story form and for this reason, his taste is eclectic. Ranging from novels to manga – poems to screenwriting and even comic book story boards. Just as genres define certain works, there are a lot of elements that define his creative process. He has aspirations to write in many different genres..

Where to Find L.K. Brooks-Simpson
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – GIRL WITH ALL THE PAIN (Aliens, Tequila and Us) by Michael Herman

GIRL WITH ALL THE PAIN Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for GIRL WITH ALL THE PAIN, the third book in the young adult science fiction thriller series, Aliens, Tequila & Us, by Michael Herman. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on his giveaway.

GIRL WITH ALL THE PAIN (Aliens, Tequila & Us #3) by Michael Herman

GIRL WITH ALL THE PAIN (Aliens, Tequila & Us #3) by Michael Herman

About the Book
Title: GIRL WITH ALL THE PAIN
Series: Aliens, Tequila & Us #3
Author: Michael Herman
Release Date: February 23, 2018
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction Thriller
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo

Synopsis
Sometimes an ugly duckling becomes more than just a swan.

In the streets of Santiago, Chile, a young homeless girl named Isabel screams a scream of rage that is the last sound the gang tormenting her ever hears.

Deep within the city, a family feels her cry and sets out to find her for their sake as well as hers.

Never straying far from Isabel, Skunk Mountain, a homeless pile of walking filth, visible to only the neighborhood kids, maintains a guardian presence that is key to her survival in a world where, beneath the very ground they walk, a dark ancient intelligent entity prepares to unleash forces that will devastate Chile.

Sometimes that swan has claws and teeth.

 

 

 

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GIRL WITH ALL THE PAIN Teaser

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Excerpt
When the woman strokes Isabel’s black fur, Isabel purrs loudly and makes clicking sounds. She knows she rests between friends who will not allow the ones below the base of the statue to harm her. The woman looks down at Isabel and says, “At long last, I have found you. You have not been forgotten. You and your people will return. We will end your long-suffering. You will no longer be alone.”

Isabel looks up at her with her black cat yellow eyes, and purrs. But below her feet, the ground trembles with the might of her enemy. The woman acknowledges the terrible presence beneath them and stoops to Isabel and says, “Only you can restore order. Only you can save them. Only you can end this. When your knowledge of yourself matures and you flower to your destiny, you will fulfill yourself and your time will be complete. We will join you and make it happen. Do you understand?”

Isabel snarls in response and lets out a mighty roar.

Then she is back on the daylight street holding hands with the mirror version of herself. She looks into the mirror self’s eyes and a shudder ripples through her body. The mirror version releases her hands, smiles, looks to Ángel and says, “All is well.”

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GIRL WITH ALL THE PAIN Teaser

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Author Michael Herman

Author Michael Herman

About the Author
When he isn’t doing construction or creating 3D simulations for the AEC industry, Michael Herman writes from his small urban hillside farm in California where he types away to the sounds of chickens, coyotes, the occasional fox and his household pets.

 

 

 

 

 

Where to Find Michael Herman
Goodreads Website | FacebookTwitter

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Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – BIG CITY VILLAIN (Big City Trilogy) by Penelope Ray

BIG CITY VILLAIN Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for BIG CITY VILLAIN, the first book in the young adult superhero romance series, Big City Trilogy, by Penelope Ray. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

BIG CITY VILLAIN (Big City Trilogy #1) by Penelope Ray

BIG CITY VILLAIN (Big City Trilogy #1) by Penelope Ray

About the Book
Title: BIG CITY VILLAIN
Series: Big City Trilogy #1
Author: Penelope Ray
Release Date: September 25, 2018
Genre:
Young Adult SciFi/Superhero Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
Seventeen-year-old Coal Black takes being the bad boy to a whole new level. A super level. Known as the city’s terrifying super villain, Headphones, Coal works hard to keep his bad reputation intact despite being banned from using his powers. But things soon take a drastic turn when a deadly vigilante promises to destroy his whole world and his brother.

When his secrets are threatened, how far will Coal go to keep everything from unraveling? And with betrayal around every corner, he just might not make it out alive.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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BIG CITY VILLAIN Teaser

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Chapter 1
My Name Is Coal. Not Cole. Not Headphones.

“Shouldn’t you be home at this hour, Headphones?”

I clenched my jaw and balled up my fists, but I kept my gaze fixed on the city lights.

“My name is not Headphones. It’s Coal. And the agreement was to be home at nine. It’s 8:30 pm.” I still had a whole half-hour, and I was going to live it up to the last second.

“8:33 pm, actually.” Anti-Gravity corrected, standing next to me on the edge of the tall building.

He looked down at the ribbon of light down below us and whistled softly.

“People on the streets look like ants.”

I frowned and squinted my eyes. Finally getting frustrated that I couldn’t see anything worth a bean, I pulled my glasses out of my pocket and slipped them on. So that ribbon of light was actually the street.

(Don’t ask why I am not wearing my glasses in the first place. It’s complicated, and I’m not sure I have the answer.)

“Scared of heights, Tights?” I asked, glancing at him and noticing he was in full costume.

Overzealous superhero.

He sent me a scowl. “Don’t call me that. Either Ben or Anti-Gravity, but stop calling me Tights.”

I cocked an eyebrow and looked him up and down. “Your outfit is nothing but cherry red spandex, and I think I have the right to call you Tights. Besides, you call me Headphones, so why can’t I call you whatever I want? Would you prefer Benny-boo?”

“Firstly, everyone knows that superheroes, and yes, even supervillains wear tights. Secondly, everyone calls you Headphones. Thirdly—” Tights stopped and shook his head, slightly shivering at the new nickname “—I think I would prefer Tights over Benny-boo.”

“Look at me, sweats and a tee. No tights here. And just because I happen to like music, doesn’t give people the right to nickname me Headphones. Besides, I already have a real villain name,” I said, getting frustrated with the conversation and the cold breeze that was picking up.

I rubbed my bare arms in an attempt to warm myself up. It didn’t work. It never worked. I didn’t even know why I tried.

“What? Ember?”

I scowled at him. “Yes. Ember.”

Tights grimaced. “I’d go with Headphones if I were you, and you wearing those headphones 24/7 gives people the right to call you that. What do you even listen to?” he asked, reaching across and yanking off my headphones.

I snatched them back from his hands.

“Music. Ever heard of it before?” I turned from the edge and stomped back to the rooftop’s door, deciding the cocky superhero ruined enough of my night, but before I could open it, I felt Tights’s presence behind me.

I whipped around to find him both flying and grinning. My hand automatically tightened on the doorknob.

“How does it feel like to have superpowers and be banned from using them?” he asked.

There was no compassion in his voice, just pure unadulterated teasing.

“Like a whole strawberry cake all to myself,” I grumbled, yanking the door open and walking into the dimly lit staircase.

“See you at home, brother,” Tights called after me, his voice rising above the squeaking hinges as the door closes.

I whipped around just in time to see Tights flying off into the night. I could just make out his laughter as he left me behind. Some faithful twin brother I had. Some family values he cherished.

“Jerk.”

I turned back around and stared at the stairs in front of me. I sighed loudly, loud enough that it echoed off the graffiti-filled walls. Why couldn’t this building have an elevator? That would have made my life so much easier.

Before I could even take the first step of my long journey down the nearly fifty flights of stained and sticky concrete stairs, my phone buzzed in my back pocket.

(Let’s just say, when you forget about your phone, feeling it vibrate is very weird.)

Taking it out of my pocket, I looked down at the glowing screen.

One new text message from Ben: 8:40 pm brother. Hope you get home safe.

I groaned loudly. This was not going to be fun. I put my headphones back on and turned up the volume. Okay, I could do this. I had been using these stairs for three months straight now. I could jog down this with no problem.

Hopefully.

It was not fun being banned from using my powers. Stupid Board of Heroes and Villains.

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BIG CITY VILLAIN Teaser

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Author Penelope Ray

Author Penelope Ray

About the Author
In her natural habitat, Penelope Ray can be found with headphones on and furiously typing away on her laptop, completely oblivious to what’s going on around her except for her attention-demanding cats. Though writing about superheroes and their crazy adventures is her current obsession, she started off as a quiet romance author, but a year ago she found Wattpad and let her imagination run wild. It hasn’t come back yet. And that’s when she discovered me, Coal Black. Her hero, her dashing prince charming, the wind in her sails, and her motivation to keep writing. Happiest in the rain and snow surrounded by cats, Penelope writes her next book while trying not to overthink her author bio or how she’s going to write the ending to the story.

 

 

Where to Find Penelope Ray
Goodreads | Facebook | Wattpad

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Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – TOXIC by Lydia Kang

TOXIC Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for TOXIC, a stand-alone young adult science fiction romance, by Lydia . See below for the cover, information on the book, and preorder links.

TOXIC by Lydia Kang

TOXIC by Lydia Kang

About the Book
Title: TOXIC
Author: Lydia Kang
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Genre:
 Young Adult Science Fiction/Romance
Release Date: November 6, 2018
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & NobleiBooks | Kobo

Synopsis
Hana isn’t supposed to exist. She’s grown up hidden by her mother in a secret room of the bioship Cyclo until the day her mother is simply gone. Along with the entire crew. Cyclo tells her she was abandoned, but she’s certain her mother wouldn’t leave her there to die. And Hana isn’t ready to die yet—she’s never really gotten to live.

Fenn is supposed to die. He and a crew of hired mercenaries are there to monitor Cyclo as she expires, and the payment for the suicide mission will mean Fenn’s sister is able to live. But when he meets Hana, he’s not sure how to save them both.

Because Hana knows the ship’s secret—and Hana and Fenn falling for each other may be what ultimately kills them.

 

 

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Excerpt
My heart is beating so fast I can barely stay standing. I have clawed my robe until it has holes in the edges.

It has been six hours now. I am absolutely forbidden to leave my room, a room that does not exist in the consciousness of any crew member except my mother, hidden as it is in the most unused part of Cyclo’s body, the northeast quadrant, alpha ring.

For the last two hours, I’ve raised my hand countless times, poised a few inches from the door, before dropping it. Even touching the door is strictly forbidden. But I can’t wait here for much longer. Where is Mother? Where could she be? I’d even read the last entry in her diary, looking to see if anything was off, but there was nothing but our last discussion on why hedgehogs are not related to sea urchins. My eyes are full of tears, and I’ve already cried several times out of sheer panic.

I keep my voice steady and say, “Cyclo. Please open the door.”

Cyclo, not bothering to speak because the message is too urgent, blanches with white that moves in waves over the door.

Forbidden.

“Cyclo. Please open the door,” I say again, this time my voice cracking. I’ll only just peep my head outside, just a little look. I won’t step a foot out there. I know people will be walking the hallways. But if no one is there…maybe I can make my way to her lab and see why she’s delayed. I know exactly where it is. I’ve spent much of my life studying Cyclo’s every detail—the story of her birth, the way she harvests starlight energy, the layout of the ship down to every single storage vacuole and crew member unit.

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TOXIC Teaser

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Author Lydia Kang

Author Lydia Kang

About the Author
Lydia Kang is an author of young adult fiction, poetry, and narrative non-fiction. She graduated from Columbia University and New York University School of Medicine, completing her residency and chief residency at Bellevue Hospital in New York City. She is a practicing physician who has gained a reputation for helping fellow writers achieve medical accuracy in fiction. Her poetry and non-fiction have been published in JAMA, The Annals of Internal Medicine, Canadian Medical Association Journal, Journal of General Internal Medicine, and Great Weather for Media. She believes in science and knocking on wood, and currently lives in Omaha with her husband and three children.

 

 

Where to Find Lydia Kang
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Blog Tour – Guest Post + Giveaway – THE SCYTHIAN TRIALS by Elizabeth Isaacs

THE SCYTHIAN TRIALS Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for THE SCYTHIAN TRIALS, a stand-alone adult fantasy science fiction romance by Elizabeth Isaacs, releasing October 23, 2018. See below for information on the book, pre-order links, an exclusive guest post, and details on her giveaway.

THE SCYTHIAN TRIALS by Elizabeth Isaacs

THE SCYTHIAN TRIALS by Elizabeth Isaacs

About the Book
Title:
THE SCYTHIAN TRIALS
Author:
Elizabeth Isaacs
Publisher: Vesuvian Books
Release Date: October 23, 2018
Genre: Adult Fantasy Science Fiction Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo

Synopsis
Descendants of the Amazons, the Scythians work alongside prominent governments but answer to no one. Warriors living on thefringe of civilization, they live by one credo: Strength through Equality. Power through Knowledge.

Nya Thalestris is the brightest Scythian of her generation. Strong, capable, ruthless, she is sure to earn a spot in the Trials, a time-honored mating ritual responsible for the evolution of her species.

Abducted by their sworn enemy, the Drahzda, Nya is forever altered and spirals out of control. The Society sends in Jax Nickius. Infamous psychologist and one of the most brutal warriors of their kind, he discovers triggers planted in Nya’s mind. As Nya solidifies her spot in the Trials, Jax develops a plan to help her heal—while pursuing her as a mate. But, Nya’s attraction to Jax is at war with her instinct to never let anyone get too close.

During the Trials, Nya’s repressed memories surface, revealing a new enemy—one from inside the consulate walls—and a traitorous alliance on the horizon that could irrevocably change the course of history.

Since before the Bronze Age, the Society has managed to safeguard humanity from itself … until now.

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Top Ten Authors Who Inspire Me
For me, inspiration comes from different places. Some inspire me for their ability to string words together and create sheer magic. For others, it’s the person behind the words on the page. Here is my list of ten authors that have been inspirational to me over the years.

  1. Jennifer Armentrout
  2. Amy Daws
  3. Penny Reid
  4. Mindy Ruiz
  5. Abbi Glines
  6. Stephen R. Donaldson
  7. Lisa Kleypas
  8. JR Ward
  9. Maya Angelou
  10. JK Rowling

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Author Elizabeth Isaacs

Author Elizabeth Isaacs

About the Author
Elizabeth is an author, teacher, and publishing professional who began her career as a national presenter for Resource Profiles, where she developed teacher seminars designed to foster creative brain stimulation. Moving into formal education, she helped at-risk students improve their writing skills as well as created and implemented a creative writing/blogging program that centered on teaching the 21st-century learner. Works stemming from this initiative were published online and seen in over 40 countries.

Elizabeth receives invitations to speak nationwide at schools and book clubs. She co-founded the popular book site, Chirenjenzie, which reaches thousands of people throughout the world. The writer support and reader interest group promotes and interacts with followers on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and various other blog sites. Elizabeth has a Master’s degree from Austin Peay State University, where she studied classical opera. She graduated Magna Cum Laude and was a member of the Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society.

The Light of Asteria” received Honorable Mention at the New York Book Festival. Her newest work, “The Scythian Trials” will be released in 2017 by Vesuvian Media.

Where to find Elizabeth Isaacs
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Book Review + Giveaway – STAR-CROSSED by Pintip Dunn

STAR-CROSSED Blog Tour

STAR-CROSSED by Pintip Dunn

STAR-CROSSED by Pintip Dunn

5 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
Princess Vela’s people are starving.

Stranded on a planet that lacks food, Vela makes the ultimate sacrifice and becomes an Aegis for her people. Accepting a genetic modification that takes sixty years off her life, she can feed her colony via nutrition pills. But her best friend is still getting worse. And she’s not the only one.

Now the king is dying, too.

When the boy she’s had a crush on since childhood volunteers to give his life for her father’s, Vela realizes her people need more than pills to survive. As tensions rise between Aegis and colonists, secrets and sabotage begin to threaten the future of the colony itself.

Unless Vela is brave enough to save them all…

 

 

 

 

 

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My Review
An intense young adult dystopian romance filled with impossible choices, longing, loyalty, and above all, love. When seventeen year old Princess Vela is caught sneaking food to her best friend, her entire future is jeopardized. But the leadership sees something in her and offers her an opportunity to prove herself worthy of taking over her father’s position of Ruler when he passes. Vela and her sister, Blanca, are each challenged to show they have what it takes to lead their people, despite their weaknesses. Vela is compassionate to a fault and Blanca is logical and analytical at the expense of compassion. Each princess is forced into a situation that tests their limits in ways neither is prepared for.

Plot
The plot is intricately woven with subplotting that made this a “can’t put down” book for me. While I found some of it predictable, the author’s writing and the characters she created made me need to know what happened next. Dunn drew me into her world, which is richly built, and made me care about fictional people in a way I haven’t in a long time. I wanted a different ending, but the one I got was both gut-wrenching and satisfying.

The Characters
Well-developed and incredibly real, Carr, Vela, and the rest of the cast were real to me, and I loved them wholly, never wanting to the story to end. Carr is what every book boyfriend should be with a deep sense of family loyalty and strength, with a poetic side that made me swoon. Vela was everything I want in a young adult heroine. Her compassion for others and sense of doing the right thing at any cost made her one of my favorite young adult protagonists of all time.

Top Five Things I Loved About STAR-CROSSED
1. Vela. She was by far my favorite character of 2018 and in my top five young adult protagonists of all time. She’s warm, loyal, loving, and compassionate with a strong sense of doing the right thing. Her love for her family, her best friend, and Carr made her utterly relatable.

2. Carr. Ahh, what can I say about the dreamy boy who would give his life to save his sister? There is so much to him, but the way he cares not only about his sister but Vela, too, makes him worthy of Vela’s love.

3. Impossible choices. Vela is put in charge of choosing the boy who will die to save her father’s life, but when the only boy she’s ever loved, Carr, puts himself in the running, she finds herself in a situation with no good outcomes. This is the type of situation that makes for page-turning conflict.

4. Dystopian worlds. My favorite genre because anything can happen and nothing is ever as it seems.

5. The ending. Oh my God that ending. It gutted me but it made me FEEL.

Bottom Line
An outstanding young adult dystopian tale that will reside among my favorites for years to come.

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

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About the Book
Title: STAR-CROSSED
Author: Pintip Dunn
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Release Date: October 2, 2018
Pages: 400
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian Science Fiction Romance
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

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Author Pintip Dunn

Author Pintip Dunn

About the Author
Pintip Dunn is a New York Times bestselling author of young adult fiction. She graduated from Harvard University, magna cum laude, with an A.B., and received her J.D. at Yale Law School.

Pintip’s novel FORGET TOMORROW won the 2016 RWA RITA® for Best First Book, and SEIZE TODAY won the 2018 RITA for Best Young Adult Romance. Her books have been translated into four languages, and they have been nominated for the following awards: the Grand Prix de l’Imaginaire; the Japanese Sakura Medal; the MASL Truman Award; the Tome Society It list; and the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award. Her other titles include REMEMBER YESTERDAY, THE DARKEST LIE, GIRL ON THE VERGE, and the upcoming STAR-CROSSED and

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Where to Find Pintip Dunn
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Amazon | Entangled

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Book Blitz – Teaser + Giveaway – UNEXPECTED HOSTAGE (Unexpected) by Layla Stone

UNEXPECTED HOSTAGE Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for UNEXPECTED HOSTAGE, the first book in the adult science fiction romance series, Unexpected, by Layla Stone. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive teaser, and details on her giveaway.

UNEXPECTED HOSTAGE (Unexpected #1) by Layla Stone

UNEXPECTED HOSTAGE (Unexpected #1) by Layla Stone

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: UNEXPECTED HOSTAGE
Series: Unexpected #1
Author: Layla Stone
Release Date: September 9, 2018
Genre:
Adult Science Fiction Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
Everyone says he’s dangerous.

Everyone is wrong.

My new cabin-mate is a telepath and the whole ship’s scared of him. I was too, for about three seconds. He’s quiet, but once I get him talking he’s the most fascinating man I’ve ever known. He shouldn’t be in that cage. He didn’t do anything wrong. But good thing he is, because I would love to snuggle down for a long night with a body like his.

Everyone thinks they’re safe.

Everyone is wrong.

My race is known for being peaceful, and I was too…until I was electrocuted, kidnapped, sold, and then put in a cage. I’ll get out of here soon, but while I plot my escape, I’ll enjoy my cabin-mate’s attention. She thinks she has figured me out. She’s not even close.

The ship is being attacked, a perfect diversion. There is only one problem…I want to take my cabin-mate with me.

Note to readers: This is a full length Sci-fi Romance Novel with action, adventure, adult humor and a steamy romance. Mature readers only.

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UNEXPECTED HOSTAGE Teaser 1

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UNEXPECTED HOSTAGE Teaser 2

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Author Layla Stone

Author Layla Stone

About the Author
Layla Stone is an unapologetic romance junkie. As a self proclaimed Modern-Day Casanova of fictional men, she spins stories to create unique lovers with the plethora of races she’s dreamed up.

Southern California is where she lives with her geeky husband and two rambunctious children.

 

 

 

 

Where to Find Layla Stone
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Amazon

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Giveaway
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Young Adult Book Review + Giveaway – THE SPONSORED by Caroline T. Patti

THE SPONSORED Blog Tour

THE SPONSORED by Caroline T. Patti

THE SPONSORED by Caroline T. Patti

5 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
Don’t break the rules…

Max Winter is a janitor at a ritzy boarding school. He’s supposed to keep to himself, mind his business, stay quiet about the things he sees, sweep the floors, and under no circumstances is he to have any contact with the residents. Now, Max will break every last one of those rules when he meets Ace Valentine.

Don’t follow your heart…

Ace Sloane finds out she’s on the wrong side of a war she no longer believes in fighting. Now, she’ll risk everything to get her life back from the people who stole it, including getting too close to exactly the wrong boy.

Don’t get caught…

Grey Winter lost both parents in a fire that should’ve killed her as well. A “miracle baby,” Grey is sent to live with her Nana who should have told her the truth about who and what she really is. Now she’s at the forefront of a cover-up, all-out manhunt, and the object of one boy’s interest she doesn’t want or need. It’s up to Grey to connect the dots and bring an end to the secrets and lies that have caused so much pain and suffering for so long.

 

 

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My Review
This is a great scifi/dystopian told from two points of view, a generation apart. First person present is Grey Winter, a teen girl with the ability to self heal. Through a series of flashbacks, we get the third-person point of view of Max Winter, Grey’s father. The two stories run in parallel through most of the book, but it’s clear they will end up converging. This is a unique twist on young adult romance. Both characters are teens at the time their stories are told and both include romances, making this a two for one if teen romance is your thing. But it’s so much more than that. There’s plenty of action, a huge mystery, and enough secrets and revelations to keep me turning the pages. The story starts off with a bang as Grey intervenes in a robbery, putting herself between a bullet and the owner of the bodega. Unfortunately, this also exposes  her ability to the boy at her school she likes the least. But there is so much more to Grey and Julian than one unfortunate incident.

Max Winter is the janitor at a prestigious school for The Sponsored, a group of kids who get the best education available in exchange for giving up their life choices to the government. Lowly janitors and Sponsored are not allowed to mingle, but with any good dystopian romance, rules are made to be broken. As both stories unfold, we learn everything is both more and less than it seems and secrets and lies run deep.

Plot
A two-forked tale, the plotting of both are expertly intertwined. As Grey attempts to keep her abilities a secret, live her life, and fight a budding, but dangerous, attraction to Julian, we see Max and Grey’s mom meet and fall in love. It’s more than just a romantic backstory, though. We learn all the secrets of The Sponsored through his eyes. A captivating storytelling approach that I absolutely loved!

The Characters
While it took me a bit to warm up to Grey, I loved her. Her penchant for keeping everyone at arms’ length initially seemed to include the reader as well, but over the course of the book, she lets us in. She’s wounded, damaged, and so incredibly easy to root for. The rest of the characters, Nana, Max, Ace, and Julian are well-developed.

Top Five Things I Loved About THE SPONSORED
1. The plot. Well told and kept me engaged from the opening scene.

2. Grey. She is a complex heroine with so much heart, I just adored her.

3. Dystopia. One of my favorite genres and the author’s take on a near-future society was utterly plausible, making it all the more terrifying.

4. Action. From the opening pages, there is just the right amount of action to keep the story moving.

5. Romance. Two separate romances means twice the angsty love!

Bottom Line
Wonderful dystopian romance with a storytelling twist.

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

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About the Book
Title: THE SPONSORED
Author: Caroline T. Patti
Publisher: Month9Books
Release Date: September 12, 2018
Pages: 330
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian SciFi Adventure
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | GooglePlay | BAM! | IndieBound | !ndigo | The Book Depository

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Author Caroline T. Patti

Author Caroline T. Patti

About the Author
Caroline T Patti is the author of The World Spins Madly On and Too Late To Apologize. When she’s not writing, she’s a school librarian, mother of two, wife, avid reader and Green Bay Packer fan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where to find Caroline T. Patti
Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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Giveaway
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Young Adult Book Review + Giveaway – OUT OF SIGHT (Progenitor) by Matthew S. Cox

OUT OF SIGHT Blog Tour

OUT OF SIGHT (Progenitor #1) by Matthew S. Cox

OUT OF SIGHT (Progenitor #1) by Matthew S. Cox

4 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
Most Citizens hold Outcasts in dim regard, but Sima never expected they’d throw her off the planet.

In 2411, overpopulation has spread a plaque of filthy, congested city to the corners of the Earth. Government has raised corruption to an art form, and no one hears the cries of those left to die in the dark passageways of civilization. Following the End of Nations, people cling to the only division left: social status.

Since running away from home four years ago, she’s managed to stay a step ahead of death―or worse. At sixteen, she’s getting too old to survive from begging, despite her best effort to pretend she’s younger. Worse, the sidewalks teem with little kids edging in on her turf, monopolizing Citizens’ charity with their wide, pleading eyes and genuine innocence.

A chance meeting with suspiciously nice cops leaves her more confused than ever. Between deadly gangs, unforgiving security forces, and a terrifying madam eager to exploit a girl her age, merely getting older is the biggest threat to her life. With no good choice to make, she risks the least of three evils.

Sima thought her life on Earth had been dangerous…

She hasn’t seen anything yet..

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My Review
Traces of DIVERGENT blend with PASSENGERS and LOST for a dark, action-packed scifi dystopian adventure. Sixteen-year-old Sima is an Outcast on future Earth where Citizens live an easy life and Outcasts struggle for daily survival. Sima begs for enough food to be able to live another day, but at sixteen, she’s no longer a cute waif, and is envious of the younger kids who still tug at the heartstrings of the more fortunate. The first third of the book is devoted to her day-to-day survival, until she’s wrongly associated with anti-government forces and arrested. Instead of prison time, she’s offered a chance to participate in the Progenitor program, although the details of what that means to her are a bit murky. With more trepidation than excitement, she agrees, which thrusts her into another world, where survival means something else entirely.

The writing is fantastic. Cox’s descriptive style conjures vivid imagery that stimulates the imagination. The world’s he conjures are fully developed and filled with environments and characters that bring the reader deep into the story. The technology and world building is superb and kept me rooted in Sima’s story.

Plot
The story takes a while to get going. However, there is enough action to keep the reader invested. We’re nearly 30% in when the inciting incident takes Sima from her “normal” life and thrusts her on her journey. She spends an inordinate amount of time musing over her choices for survival. Over and over again like a merry-go-round of the same three options, until finally a fourth option is presented to her. But instead of making a decision for herself, the choice is made for her, so she enters her new life kicking and screaming (and sobbing and whimpering).

The Characters
The story is about Sima. We spend the majority of the book inside her head. As a street rat, she pushes others away, preferring to go it alone. A whole host of minor characters interact with her, some superficial, but most with as much depth as Sima herself. Sima has a rich backstory and complex character. She annoyed me at times with her constant whimpering and sobbing. I can certainly understand her emotions, but I was hoping for more of a Katniss or Tris type character. She does transform, but it’s definitely a three steps forward, two steps back type of journey.

Top Five Things I Enjoyed About OUT OF SIGHT
1. The writing. Vivid and unique, peppered with analogies that create stunning mental images.

2. Dystopia. I love a good story about a fallen civilization, and the dark future Cox envisions is layered and intense.

3. SciFi. While not strictly a science fiction, there is so much futuristic technology that it transcends genres.

4. Character development. Yes, it’s slow to come about, but Sima evolves into a young woman who learns what it means to care for someone other than herself.

5. Action. There’s no shortage of action and adventure throughout the story.

Bottom Line
A dystopian adventure with science fiction elements packed with action.

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

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About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: OUT OF SIGHT
Series: Progenitor #1
Author: Matthew S. Cox
Publisher: Division Zero Press
Release Date: August 13, 2018
Pages: 395
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian SciFi Adventure
Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

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Author Matthew S. Cox

Author Matthew S. Cox

About the Author
Born in a little town known as South Amboy NJ in 1973, Matthew has been creating science fiction and fantasy worlds for most of his reasoning life. Somewhere between fifteen to eighteen of them spent developing the world in which Division Zero, Virtual Immortality, and The Awakened Series take place. He has several other projects in the works as well as a collaborative science fiction endeavor with author Tony Healey.

Hobbies and Interests:
Matthew is an avid gamer, a recovered WoW addict, Gamemaster for two custom systems (Chronicles of Eldrinaath [Fantasy] and Divergent Fates [Sci Fi], and a fan of anime, British humour (<- deliberate), and intellectual science fiction that questions the nature of reality, life, and what happens after it. He is also fond of cats. Awards: Prophet of the Badlands (excerpt) – Honorable Mention – Writers of the Future.

Where to find Matthew S. Cox
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Giveaway
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An Excerpt from SUPERHERO HIGH (Heroes and Zeroes)

SUPERHERO HIGHI’m happy to be able to share an excerpt from SUPERHERO HIGH, the first book in my young adult urban scifi series, Heroes & Zeros, about teenage superheroes. See below for an exclusive excerpt, and links where you can find the book. You can read it for free with Kindle Unlimited or buy the ebook for just $3.99.

Ren hands me the syllabus and we go through them together, with me highlighting some he should read and letting him choose some others. When I’m done, I hand the paper back to him and catch him staring at me, or more accurately, staring at my mouth.

Oh my God, is he . . .? No, he wouldn’t. My throat goes dry and I swallow hard. I should get up, but the thought of Ren’s lips pressed to mine keeps me from moving. My breathing escalates to the point that he must notice, and my hands curl and relax at my sides.

His gaze lifts to mine, and the vulnerability in his eyes steals my breath. I’ve never seen this side of him. Not really. He’s been unsure, or nervous, but not this. Ren searches my face for something, and I’m pretty sure all he’s going to see is pure fear. Because if I kiss this boy, nothing between us will be the same.

My tongue darts out and moistens my lips before I can acknowledge that probably wasn’t the best idea. His pupils dilate before his eyelids drift closed. He leans closer, tilting his head.

Holy crap, this is happening, and I’m not doing anything to stop it. Which means I must want this. My breath catches as my eyes close, and I wait for the soft brush of his lips. The mattress dips next to me, and the heat from his body’s proximity radiates to my arm and chest.

His warm breath, minty and clean, dances close to my lips. I part mine slightly as he gets closer, waiting, wondering for a brief second if he’s about to tell me this is all a big joke or make fun of me. The scent of sandalwood and soap fills my senses, and rough whiskers rasp against my chin. I take in a sharp breath and . . .

“Ren, I need—oh, oh, I’m so sorry. Mom said you were studying, and . . .”

Ren pulls back from me so fast, he creates a breeze that ruffles my hair. When I open my eyes, he’s standing beside the bed, his hand on top of his head. “Hey, M, what’s up?”

Mattea’s eyes dart between us. She’s clearly agitated about something, whether from what she walked in on or something else isn’t apparent. “It’s Ian. He’s missing.”
Okay, something else. Good.

“What do you mean he’s missing?” Ren asks.

“I mean he was supposed to meet me an hour ago, but he never showed. No text, no call, nothing. That’s never happened. I called his mom and she hasn’t heard from him, either. She says he’s not at home and his phone’s offline.”

Ren glances at me, then back to his sister. “I’m sure it’s nothing, Mattea. His battery’s probably dead.”

“He’s never disappeared like this without calling. Something’s wrong. I know it.”

“Okay, I get it. What do you want me to do?”

I stand and grab my bag off the floor. “I should go.”

“Wait . . .” Ren’s lips part, as if he’s going to say something more, but he doesn’t.

“I’ll see you on Thursday.” Before I can say or do something stupid, I rush from the room. “Bye, Mrs. Gonzalez,” I call as I fly out the front door, not waiting for her response.

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SUPERHERO HIGH Teaser

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

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

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

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

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

 

Cover Reveal – JACK JETSTARK’S INTERGALACTIC FREAKSHOW by Jennifer Lee Rossman

JACK JETSTARK'S INTERGALACTIC FREAKSHOW Cover Reveal

World Weaver Press and author Jennifer Lee Rossman are revealing the cover to JACK JETSTARK’S INTERGALACTIC FREAKSHOW, an adult science fiction/fantasy, releasing December 4, 2018. See below for the cover, information on the book, preorder links, and a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR.

JACK JETSTARK'S INTERGALACTIC FREAKSHOW by Jennifer Lee Rossman

JACK JETSTARK’S INTERGALACTIC FREAKSHOW by Jennifer Lee Rossman

About the Book
Title:
JACK JETSTARK’S INTERGALACTIC FREAKSHOW
Author: Jennifer Lee Rossman
Publisher: World Weaver Press
Release Date: December 4, 2018
Genre: Adult Science Fiction/Fantasy
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU 

Synopsis
Jack Jetstark travels the universe to seek out the descendants of superpowered freaks created long ago by VesCorp scientists. The vibrations encoded in a particular song transform the members of Jack’s crew into a firebreather and an angel, a wildman and telepathic conjoined triplets, so they hide the truth of who they really are with the theatrics of a carnival.

The song plays every night through the receptor Jack carries with them, but when one night it has a different ending and their temporary powers become permanent, Jack believes the change is a signal from the woman who sent him on this quest in the first place. He and his freaks must navigate a universe at war to protect the love of his life.

But does the ruler of VesCorp really need protecting?

 

 

 

 

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Author Jennifer Lee Rossman

Author Jennifer Lee Rossman

About the Author
ennifer Lee Rossman is a science fiction geek from Oneonta, New York, where she cross stitches, watches Doctor Who, and threatens to run over people with her wheelchair. Her work has been featured in several anthologies and her time travel novella Anachronism will be available in June 2018. Her debut novel, Jack Jetstark’s Intergalactic Freakshow, will be published by World Weaver Press in 2018.

 

 

 

 

Where to Find Jennifer Lee Rossman
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter