Saturday, 29 October 2016

World's Away (An Alpha Alien Abduction Romance Tale: Book 1) by J.L. Hendricks

J.L. Hendricks (A lady never reveals her age) is a new independent author. The Eclipse series is her first one and she is very excited to share the new universe she has created. J.L. is currently writing full time, but before she started writing she had a successful career as a Purchasing Manager and Contracts Administrator.

Travel is a passion of hers and she hopes to be able to travel again soon and discover a new world to write about for those who enjoy creative universes.

She is very proud to have served in the US Army before she went to college.

JL decided to finally write, and finish a book this year because of a few friends who encouraged her to write out all of the crazy ideas she had roaming around in her head. She thinks they just wanted her to stop listening to those voices. ;) You see, she was constantly in her head and not paying attention to others. They hoped she would get it all out of her system by writing them down.

JL hopes her stories entertain you and can bring a laugh on occasion.

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About the Book

Slavery, or mate to an Alien Commander? Which would you choose?

Paris had lost her parents at a young age and instead of going into the foster system, she ended up on the streets. Sure, life was tough for a 17 year old girl with no one to turn to, but she made her way on the streets of Los Angeles for years. That is, until one day when she was no longer on the streets.

Commander Venay of the V’Zenian Empire was a man on a mission. It was his responsibility to ensure a good lot of human slaves made it back to his planet each year. But this time it was different, he saw her across a field and knew he had to have her, at all costs.

The choice was simple, Paris could be a slave on the V’Zenian home world, or she could become Venay's mate and provide him with the offspring his people so desperately needed! Until the V’Zinian's most venomous rival, the Zateelians, attacked Venay’s ship and forced them to crash land on a distant planet. Paris had a new choice to make: save herself or help Venay exterminate aliens who have a sinister plan for the humans.

Come and join J.L. Hendricks on her next voyage! Worlds Away is the first in a Sci-Fi Romantic/Adventure trilogy where aliens abduct women for more than just slavery, they abduct them to continue their own race! If you like Ruby Lionsdrake, then you will enjoy Worlds Away! This is a mostly clean romance with an HEA in each book. If it were a movie, it would be PG-13.

Get it today on Amazon!

Worlds Collide, book 2 in the Alpha Alien Abduction Tales also available on Amazon!

Keep reading for an excerpt:

My heart was still pumping an hour later, and my adrenaline seemed to be burning out. I was exhausted just sitting there holding tight to the laser gun as well as to the couch every time our ship was hit. I wanted to say that I could hear the laser cannons fire, or whatever they called them on this ship. But I knew it must be my imagination creating the sounds in order to keep track of the fighting somehow.

However, I really did hear some of the torpedoes going back and forth. It was a weird sound, almost like Superman flying super-fast through a tunnel and taking all sound with him through that tunnel. Then it was super quiet for less than half a second which was always followed by a loud bang and then the ship would jerk one way or another. At least there was a warning sound before the torpedoes hit. They packed the most punch.

The next hit, well, it was almost what killed us. The ship started to tilt, like it had lost its stabilizers or something, but we must have gotten a good hit on them as well because another hit didn’t come for a while. I could feel us limping along. Since we were slanted, Lisa and I had to hold on tight to the couch. I had never been so happy to see furniture tied to the ground before. Some of the knickknacks and loose items like chairs and pillows were flying around as we tried to get away from the enemy ship.

We turned and headed to something, at the time I didn’t know what. But at least we weren’t getting shot at any more. It seemed like days before we made it to the planet. The only reason I knew we were at the planet is because Venay called me, again.

“Venay, I am fine. No need to worry about me.”

“Thank the moons! But I am calling to warn you, this next bit is going to get very difficult. There should be a place in the quarters you are in where you can strap yourself to a fold down chair on the wall. Find that and get your butt in it now. We are going to try landing this ship on the planet before the enemy can catch up to us. But with the damage, re-entry is going to make for a very bumpy flight. Can you do that?”

“Yes, I can. Thank you Venay.”

He grunted and then hung up. “Lisa is there a set of fold down emergency chairs that we can lock ourselves into? You know, like the jump seats on a commercial flight?”

“Yes, in the back bedroom. There are two seats there. What’s going on?”

“What did Rotna say when he called you?”

“He tried to tell me what was going one, but was told to focus on his task, not his mate.” Her cheeks actually turned a shade of pink. I wondered when they were planning their ceremony.

“Glad to know he is fine.”

“Why do we need to do this? Is the ship getting worse?” Lisa asked, with wide eyes.

“Yes, we are approaching the planet and going to attempt to land before the enemy ship can catch us. The re-entry is going to be tough.” We made it to the back room and found the seats. There were a few things that had blocked our way, but we moved them without much issue.

It was a good thing Venay called to warn me, because we weren’t even buckled in when I felt the ship jerking and shaking like an amusement park ride about to go off the rails.

My teeth hurt so bad within just the first two minutes, I thought they might all be cracked, first from the chattering they were doing with the way we jumbled around and then from the pressure I put on my mouth to stay closed. Somewhere along the way I had bit my tongue and it hurt.

I couldn’t say how long it took for us to get through the atmosphere, but it felt like forever. I could tell when we made it because we started to smooth out and the ship wasn’t jerking so badly. The loud noise that almost made me deaf had also quieted down, now it was more like a ball whistling through the air. Although, my head was pounding and my body ached from all of the jostling and clenching. I don’t think I have ever held on to anything as tightly as those restraints, ever!

“Lisa, you ok?”

“Did we make it?” She looked around the room wide eyed and I could see she had been crying. Her face was streaked with the paths her tears left. But I couldn’t blame her. I was pretty scared myself and if I hadn’t survived five years on the streets I would have probably been crying as well.

“So far. I don’t think we have landed yet. So stay seated until we are told we can move. I have a feeling we are going to feel the landing as well.”

The ship was still tilted and the seats were very uncomfortable, we were slanted to the left so the belts that made up the restraints were digging into my left side. It felt like one of those carnival rides where you went around in circles but you were hanging on one side and the ride seat was digging into your entire side. It was similar to that, but worse.

“Lisa, tell me about the plans you and Rotna have made for your wedding. When do you want it to take place?” She looked like she might get hysterical any moment. Her eyes were all over the place and she was having trouble breathing. But she didn’t look injured, unless the belts did something internally.

“Huh? What? Oh, yea, wedding. Ummm, we spoke about it last night. We agreed that we wanted it to happen as soon as we could get some time on the Commander’s schedule. Do you think he will have time tomorrow?” She was dazed, I wasn’t sure she understood what was happening. How could she if she was thinking Venay could marry them tomorrow, after crash landing on a planet while in a firefight with a pretty heavily armed enemy ship?

“Lisa, do you know what just happened?” I wished at that moment I could get out of my seat, but I knew there was no way it would be safe until after we made landing.

“Yes, we are landing on a planet.”

“Because we just got our butts kicked in a firefight with an enemy ship. There won’t be time to get married, not at least for a while. I couldn’t even tell you how long it will take to fix our ship. Or if the Zateelians will come for us. Lisa, I need you to focus. Can you do that?” Her eyes were still glazed over and her mouth was hanging open. She kept moving her head like she was listening to some music somewhere.

Just then I got a communication from Venay, “Paris, are you ok?”

“Yes, both Lisa and I are ok. She might have some internal injuries, but I think she is ok. However, she appears to be in shock. How much longer before we land?”

“We came in too fast, so I have to keep her flying as long as possible to slow down, which means we won’t be close to the settlement here. But they will come for us and help us soon. Stay in your seats. Don’t move until I tell you, ok?”

“Of course, I am betting we will feel it when we land?”

“Yes, I am afraid you will. And Paris, don’t say anything, but Rotna is hurt, badly. Lisa might know. If he called her before he went unconscious then she knows. But don’t say anything until we land and you can check her out. Ok?”

“Ok, thank you. Um, any news about the enemy ship? Are they following us?”

He sighed and I knew it was bad, “Yes, they are heavily damaged, but they did make it through. However, they are not very close to us. They will have to crash land as well so we should have some time before they come looking for us or the settlement. I just hope that they aren’t able to crash very close to the settlement.”

Sunday, 23 October 2016

The Heron Prince (Book Two of The Demon Door) by Kim Alexander

Kim Alexander grew up in the wilds of Long Island, NY and slowly drifted south until she reached Key West. After spending ten rum-soaked years DJing in the Keys, she moved to Washington DC, where she lives with two cats, an angry fish, and her extremely patient husband. She began writing when she ran out of authors to interview (and they pulled the plug on her channel, Sirius XM Book Radio.)

Kim was in her twenties when she finally read a book not prominently featuring spaceships and/or wizards. Turns out Jane Austen was pretty funny!
THE HERON PRINCE continues the story of Rhuun and Lelet in the worlds of Mistra and Eriis and is the second in the fantasy series called THE DEMON DOOR. Her husband tells her she needs to write at least ten more books if she intends to retire in Thailand, so thank you for your patronage.

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About the Book

The Demon Door can be opened...but the price is deadly.

Rhuun, the half-human heir to the demon throne of Eriis, has found acceptance among the humans on Mistra. He even found love with the tempting and infuriating human, Lelet va’Everly.

With Lelet at his side, his ability to create fire has finally awakened, proving that he is not the cursed cripple all of Eriis believed him to be. There are secrets in his blood, unique and powerful...and worth killing for.

When Rhuun is betrayed and tricked into returning to Eriis, Lelet has no choice but to turn to exiles, children, and madmen to save him. She must do the impossible: transform herself into a demon and travel to a forgotten city to make an agonizing bargain for his life.

Surrounded by dark Mages, a war-hungry Queen, mercurial Goddesses, and enemies on every side, the demon prince and the human woman will find the Court of Eriis a subtle and dangerous place, and one false move could doom them both.

Best-selling author Kim Alexander works her magic once again, creating a novel with worlds that are as rich and complex as her characters. The Heron Prince is the second book of The Demon Door series.

Get it today on Amazon!

Keep reading for a guest post from the author:

What was it like to write the sequel to The Sand Prince?

In some ways it was easier. My series follows the adventures of a cast of almost 40 characters across two very different worlds, and a lot of that groundwork got covered in the first book. We know Eriis is a desert wasteland recovering from a devastating war. We know the demons who live there have powers humans consider magical. And we know the humans of Mistra have almost completely forgotten the enemy they almost wiped out 100 years ago.

It was harder for some of the same reasons. When you have a large cast you have to know what everyone is doing, what they know, who told them, why they are where they are, how they got there and where they wind up! It’s like herding cats, if cats were bad tempered (sexy) demon princes and infuriating (also sexy) human women.

The fun and challenging part for me was exploring the characters who played a more minor role in book one. In particular, Rhuun (the bad tempered demon prince) has an ex-girlfriend back home on Eriis, and she got the short end of the stick (so to speak) when he went through The Door to Mistra. In book two, she faces her phobias and does some exploring of her own. And we spend some time with Rhuun’s arch mortal enemy, Niico, and find out why he behaves the way he does. Meanwhile, back among the humans, we’ll be seeing more of Lelet’s older sister May, and her youngest sister Scilla (evil genius in training--she’s only 12!)

I also loved giving Lelet herself a chance to save day (more than once) and find her strength. And Rhuun begins to see there’s more to him than he ever thought.

Of course I put everyone through the wringer--this is only book two!

Thursday, 20 October 2016

A Level Best Story Collection: Giving Voice by Connie Hambley

Connie Johnson Hambley embraces the changes in the publishing world by being both traditionally and independently published.

Hambley grew up on a small dairy farm just north of New York City. When she was a child, an arsonist burned her family’s barn to the ground. Memories from that experience grew the stories that have become her independently published thrillers. Working with survivors of human trafficking sparked the idea for Giving Voice, a short story published by Level Best Books in the award-winning Best New England Crime Stories anthology.

Proving that truth can be stranger than fiction, her experience at a major bank in Boston introduced her to the clever schemes people dream up to launder money.
Hambley uses every bit of personal experience to create a story that is as believable as it is suspenseful. Leveraging her law and investment background in ways unique, creative, but not altogether logical, she has enjoyed robust professional pursuits that include writing for Bloomberg BusinessWeek, Massachusetts High Tech, and Nature Biotechnology.

Hambley writes about strong women from their perspective in situations that demand the most from them. No special powers, no gadgets, no super human abilities – just a woman caught up or embroiled in something that she has to get out of, hopefully alive. The Charity is the first in The Jessica Trilogy. The second in the series, The Troubles, will be followed by The Wake in 2017. Look for updates and information on and follow her on Twitter at @conniehambley.

Hambley blogs and speaks on the changing publishing world and how to market effectively. Find her Author-to-Reader Marketing (#A2R) posts on her Out of the Fog Blog,

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About the Book

The Level Best website describes this collection the best:

"Level Best Books publishes an annual anthology of Crime Stories set in New England each November. Well-regarded by readers and reviewers, stories published by Level Best have won the Agatha, Anthony, Macavity, Derringer and Robert L. Fish (Award for Best First Short Story presented at the Edgar® banquet) Awards and have been recognized as “Distinguished Mystery Stories,” by the editors of the Best American Mystery Stories series. Level Best also publishes the winning story from the Al Blanchard contest every year.

Founded by Skye Alexander, Kate Flora and Susan Oleksiw, Level Best’s goal is to publish the highest quality short fiction produced by crime writers either from or with stories set in the six New England states. From the beginning, the anthology has contained tales from established as well as previously unpublished authors."

Connie's short story, Giving Voice, will be featured in this anthology, due to be released in November 2016!

In the meantime, check out Connie's books, The Troubles and The Charity on Amazon!

Keep reading for an interview with the author:

Why did you decide to be a writer?

Becoming a writer wasn't a decision. As a student and in various jobs, I was the team member who converted concepts, ideas, and solutions into the written product of proposals, briefs, and marketing collateral. My brain sees in words.

Do you have a "day job"? If so, what do you do?

I'm a lot of "formers." Former lawyer, former banker, former COO, former model, former windsurfing instructor ... You get the idea. Now I use all that experience to infuse my stories with realism.

What genres do you write?

Suspense. My sweetspot is writing high-concept thrillers revolving around real-life events.

What inspires you to write?

If I don't, I would explode. So I guess you could say I'm inspired by pure self-preservation.

What authors/books have most influenced you?

I gravitate toward Scandinavian thrillers. Stieg Larsson's and Jo Nesbo's books weave complex tales that respect a reader's intelligence. Certainly I love their high octane action, but I'm also pulled toward certain works by John Grisham. I love the crux a legal issue can give to a plot. Lastly, I love Colleen McCullough's "The Thorn Birds." She told a heart-wrenching, multi-generational tale of love and loss and how the past shapes a future. Larsson's and Nesbo's thrillers lack the emotion of McCullough's work. By doing so, they alienate a swath of readers that want emotion along with action. These authors' influences can be seen in my work because I deliver on creating three dimensional characters with pasts and emotions in settings and situations that zing with realism. A new term is popping into use, it's "Literary Thriller." I fit nicely into that category, but until it's firmly in use, I'll use "Suspense" because it allows for more character and thematic development than "Thriller."

If you could choose an author to be your mentor, who would it be?

Have you read Stephen King's memior, "On Writing"? I felt like he was talking directly to me. So, yeah, go for the master. I'd chose King.

When did you first consider yourself an author?

I still don't. Calling oneself an "author" connotes a ponce hoisting a long cigarette holder in one hand while tossing a feather boa over her shoulder with the other. I'm a writer who crafts kick-ass stories, but I have to shorten it to "author" because of character constraints on Twitter and business cards.

What are your goals as an author? Where do you see yourself in five years?

I am going to work as hard as I can for as many years as it takes to be an overnight success.

What is the biggest obstacle you face as an author and what do you do to overcome it?

The biggest obstacle was the label "independent publisher" or "independently published author." A handful of readers push back against the indie label, but the entire book selling industry is rigged in favor of traditionally published authors. Everything from distribution channels to rankings on Amazon are geared to favor traditionally published authors from established house. I'm not whining. I'm good at marketing and making things happen, so for me, this obstacle is a challenge that keeps my life interesting. Now, I'm a "Hybrid" author, meaning I'm both traditionally and independently published. "Giving Voice" is a short story published by a traditional house in an award-winning anthology. I can already feel some other barriers softening.

Does your family support you in your writing, or are you on your own?

My family totally rocks in the support department. Special kudos goes to my husband. His unofficial title is "Book and Author Sherpa." We make an awesome team and I couldn't do what I do without him.

What is the best compliment you've ever received as an author?

At signings, I always place my business card with my email address into each book and encourage readers to contact me. I received an email from a reader with a 2 AM time stamp lamenting that she was still awake because she could not put my book, "The Charity," down. "As soon as I think I'll finish one section and put it down for the night, something happens and I have to find out what happens next! Dang you!" For me, that's the biggest compliment because my job as a kick-ass thriller writer is to give my readers a RIDE. So, box checked.

If you were stranded on a deserted island, and you could only have five books with you, what would they be?

Homer's Odyssey, Shakespeare's anything, Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice," and then lots of paper, pens, a computer if possible to write my own.

What made you decide to self-publish?

A small traditional press wanted to publish my first book. One look at the terms, percentages given away, volume estimates for sales, and the short length of time the house would have dedicated to promoting my work was enough to have me turn tale and swim for the indie shores. My short story, "Giving Voice," is published by a well-regarded traditional publisher, Level Best Books. So, I'm officially a hybrid author having both indie and traditional credits.

Do you write about real life experiences, or does everything come from your imagination?

Real life with a skewed imagination makes for great books...hopefully. My family was the target of an arsonist when I was a girl. You want to kickstart wheels turning? Try that one on for size.

What was the hardest part about writing your latest book?

Writing a sequel is like playing a game of bumper pool. You know you want to sink that eight ball into the corner pocket, but you can't shoot it in a straight line because there are all of these "hard stops" in your way. In a sequel, the hard stops are time and plot lines, character motivations, and established history. It's hard work.

Do you have anything specific you'd like to say to your readers?

To my readers: I love you and thank you for your support and encouragement!

Monday, 17 October 2016

What the Fly Saw by Frankie Bailey

Criminologist Frankie Bailey has five books and two published short stories in a mystery series featuring crime historian Lizzie Stuart. The Red Queen Dies, the first book in a near-future police procedural series featuring Detective Hannah McCabe, came out in September, 2013. The second book in the series, What the Fly Saw came out in March 2015. Frankie is a former executive vice president of Mystery Writers of America and a past president of Sisters in Crime.

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About the Book

Albany, New York, January 2020

The morning after a blizzard that shut down the city, funeral director Kevin Novak is found dead in the basement of his funeral home. The arrow sticking out of his chest came from his own hunting bow. A loving husband and father and an active member of a local megachurch, Novak had no known enemies. His family and friends say he had been depressed because his best friend died suddenly of a heart attack and Novak blamed himself. But what does his guilt have to do with his death? Maybe nothing, maybe a lot. The minister of the megachurch, the psychiatrist who provides counseling to church members, or the folksy Southern medium who irritates both men—one of these people may know why Novak was murdered. Detective Hannah McCabe and her partner, Mike Baxter, sort through lies and evasions to find the person who killed their “Cock Robin,” But McCabe is distracted by a political controversy involving her family, unanswered questions from another high-profile case, and her own guilt when a young woman dies after McCabe fails to act.

Get it today on Amazon!

Keep reading for a guest post from the author:

Who Do You Think You Are?

Depending on who is asking the question and under what circumstances, that question can be an angry challenge (“Hey, who do you think you are?”), or an invitation to engage in introspection (“Deep down, who do you think you are?”).

In a mystery novel, the protagonist/sleuth is certain to encounter someone who wants to know what gives her the right to investigate (to be in a place, to ask questions, to interfere with what is going on). How the sleuth explains why she is poking her nose into someone else’s business depends on her official or unofficial status. But the truth about why she is there, investigating, is really about who she sees when she looks in the mirror.

One of the conversations a writer has with her protagonist is about who that character thinks she is. In the beginning, the character may be close-mouthed, keeping the writer at a distance. But later – in self-defense – a character may begin to speak. If the writer is getting it wrong – trying to force a character to say or do something that character would never say or do-- the character may push back. This pushing back may disconcert the writer the first time it happens. The character she has created seems to be trying to hijack her book by saying and doing things that aren’t in her outline. But after a writer has experienced this a few times, an attempted coup by her protagonist is a reason to celebrate with good chocolate and a glass of wine.

When my protagonist – or any character – challenges me, I know that character is “coming to life”. That character is telling me who she thinks she is. I know that what is happening is that my subconscious has been at work. But knowing the psychology of the creative process doesn’t make the experience less real.

I have two female protagonists. I know Lizzie Stuart, my crime historian, well because I’ve written five books in which she narrates the story. Now, I have two books featuring Hannah McCabe. The years I’ve spent learning to listen when Lizzie pushes has made it much easier to allow Hannah to take the lead. Lizzie is smart and curious and she wears her heart on her sleeve. She has a hard time keeping a poker face. Hannah, on the other hand, is a police detective. She needs to keep her emotions under control and is good at maintaining a professional demeanor. She was drawn to policing because of a crime that almost destroyed her family. That experience, when she was only a nine year old child, gave her compassion but left her controlled and protective of her emotions. Watching Hannah interview a victim, watching her talk to her father over breakfast, gave me the first clues about who she is and what she believes.

I like both Lizzie and Hannah. They are so different that I don’t have to choose a favorite. I – and readers – can watch as they navigate their worlds. We can ask, “Who do you think you are?” and wait to see how they answer as their lives change and they face new challenges.

Friday, 14 October 2016

A Major Seduction by CJ Matthew

CJ Matthew grew up in an Air Force family traveling and living all over the US and around the world. It proved to be the perfect experience for gathering ideas and material for future books. And for meeting real life heroes and heroines in uniforms and flight-suits. She spent her high school and university years in California, which inspired her love of marine life, and the Pacific Ocean.

Toxic Tide is the fifth book, so far, in her paranormal romantic suspense series: Dolphin Shore Shifters. The series features a pod of dolphins living in the Santa Barbara channel off the coast of California, who are capable of shifting to human form. While posing as real humans, the dolphins work, through their oceanic conservation corporation, Save Blue Water, to protect their oceans at any cost.

CJ’s next series, The Paladin Group, launched with Deadly Reboot. The books are in the romantic suspense genre, set in a small southern town, and starring wounded air force veterans, men and women warriors turned civilian attorneys and investigators determined to continue their rescue work.

The third series, titled The Colonel’s Daughters, is a quintet with each book featuring one of the five sister’s story. Born in different countries around the world, when each of the daughters happens to return to her country of birth, she’s meets her true love and is forced to confront her destiny. Book 1, A Major Seduction is the oldest sister Kari’s book and takes place at an air force wedding in Tokyo.

A member of Romance Writers of America (RWA), Georgia Romance Writers (GRW), and Kiss of Death, CJ lives and writes near a lake in the woods northeast of Atlanta. When she isn't writing or reading romances, CJ spends time with her two grown children, their spouses, a brilliant grandson and a feisty cat named Max.

Schedule permitting, CJ loves to travel, to discover new favorite places and to meet new friends in both the US and around the world.

Max flatly refuses to travel.

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About the Book

Kari Phillips has sworn off alpha men, thanks to a childhood spent raising four sisters while her dad served in the air force and her mom was unable to cope with his deployments. Vowing never to follow in her mom’s footsteps, Kari has become a driven, successful attorney. On her way to Tokyo to rescue her best friend’s wedding, she meets a cocky F-15 pilot headed to the same ceremony. When he finagles a seat next to her on the flight, she vows if he gives her any grief, she’ll shove him out of the emergency exit without a parachute.

Major Steve Shorner, a patriotic warrior fulfilling his lifelong dream as a fighter pilot, is finding it tough to live down a couple of practical jokes. Before he heads to Tokyo to be his buddy’s best man, Steve’s commander assigns him to a no-win project in Japan, and links the outcome to Steve’s tryout for the Thunderbirds, the AF’s elite demo team. But after a chance meeting with a beautiful redhead at the airport, Steve acquires a new goal—convince the sexy, workaholic lawyer to bend her rule against military men.

Get it today on Trade PaperbackAmazon, Nook, ARe, and Kobo!

Keep reading for an excerpt:

As the airport security line slowed, Kari’s cell phone rang somewhere deep in an out-of-reach pocket. The tote bag shoulder strap took another dive and abruptly stopped its fall with a heavy jolt on her elbow. What was it with this bag? Now, with every movement, the bulky monster bumped into her knee.

Kari stopped. Bending over to dig for her phone, she followed the “New York, New York” ringtone. “Damn it,” she whispered.

“Need some help?” A deep voice rumbled from somewhere close. She glanced up. Way up. And stared. The man…gorgeous. A magazine model? Maybe not with that blond hair cut extremely short. Uh-oh. Possibly the first strike against him. He looked military.

As an air force brat, she knew how frequently men with domineering and controlling traits joined the service. Her own mother had been hard-pressed to cope with her dad, the Colonel’s, overpowering personality. Since Kari was determined not to follow in Mom’s footsteps, she simply avoided men in uniform.

Still, she had to admire the man’s strong chin and classically handsome features. Her gaze slid down to broad shoulders, trim waist, then stalled. Darted back up. Whoa, his eyes were the exact color of warm chocolate.

Wait…here was half a strike. His eyes were framed by impossibly long lashes. Unfair, wasted on a male.

He met her gaze, smiled, and said, “Could I help with the bag while you find your phone?”

Her heart cart-wheeled. As his smile grew, a deep dimple appeared in each cheek, punctuating his full lips. Wow, a tall, helpful man with sexy dimples. Her phone quit ringing. Kari felt the telltale warmth of a blush spread across her neck and up her face.

Locating her cell, she shook her head at her tall neighbor. “Thanks. I’ve got it now.” Seeing the picture of her baby sister, Deborah, on the screen, Kari punched Recall.

Since the hunk behind her only scored one and a half strikes, she surreptitiously completed her inventory and reached her verdict: the man was a total hottie. But what about the drastic buzz cut? If it wasn’t military, he might be law enforcement. Not worth the risk.

Sunday, 9 October 2016

Tompkin's School: For The Extraordiarily Talented by Tabi Slick

Tabi Slick was born in Chanute, Kansas, and grew up in the country where she was home-schooled for the greater part of her childhood. In middle school, her family moved to Davis Oklahoma where she attended public school for several years. Here she began her writing adventure and soon the world of Tompkin's Academy came to life. After graduating from high school in 2008, she spent a few years in Puerto Rico and wound up in Texas where she graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Linguistics from the University of Texas at Arlington. She was born with an immense appreciation for literature and continues to dedicate her time to her passion of writing.

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About the Book

Izara Torvik thought her life was over the moment that her father sent her and her twin brother to a boarding school in the middle of nowhere Oklahoma. She soon discovers that the school is not as ordinary as she thought and finds herself thrown into a battle against her inner demons that only have one desire...the desire to kill.

Get it today on Tabi's Website and Amazon!

Keep reading for an interview with Kain Torvik from Tompkin's School: For The Extraordinarily Talented:

Where were you born, and what was it like growing up there?

I was born in Scarsdale, New York. Probably like anyone else growing up in the suburbs, everyone parading around like they’re in a masquerade.

Did you have a close relationship with your family?

With my mom, before she died. She was amazing. But my father...Varin Torvik is a different story. He um he’d do this thing where he would down play what you had to say, or just straight up not believe you because if your age. As if nobody but him could see the truth. Anyway, we’re not close.

Who was your best friend growing up?

My twin sister Izzy for sure.

Who do you normally hang out with at school?

I’m not really a huge social kind of person, but I mostly hang out with Lee and the other guys on the basketball team.

Who is your enemy? What makes you enemies?

My roommate, Amadeus, I don’t know why but whenever I’m around him he just makes me want to punch him in the face and makes my blood boil. He also causes my sister these weird headaches. I don’t know if I’d call him an enemy, but it seems like we have an aversion to him. I think my actual enemy is myself or whatever darkness that is inside of me. I feel it trying to take over.

Tell us a little about your world, and where you fit in?

Before being sent to the Academy, my father would send me off to different places so I never really got a chance to fit in anywhere. But now I’m at this school, in the middle of the Arbuckle Mountains, and it feels right. Like I’m meant to be here, or something.

What are your goals? What would you like to achieve?

Something in the music industry. I’ve got an internship coming up in the summer as a music journalist back in New York. It sounds like a cool gig. I’ll get to go to some concerts and stuff. But I’ve also been taking these programming classes so maybe I’ll do that. Or a mix of both, who knows.

Where is the best place to visit in your world? What places should visitors avoid?

There’s not much around Tompkin’s School, but I would definitely check out the “Little Niagara”. It’s this swimming hole filled with freezing spring water in the Chickasaw National Recreation park. It’s a fun place to dive and trust me the water really is cold. Everywhere seems pretty tame in Oklahoma compared to New York, but I’ve heard that Ardmore is the most dangerous place and that’s about a half hour from the school.

Do you have any hobbies? What are they?

Listening to music, basketball, weightlifting, the usual I guess.

Do you have a secret you've never told anyone? Would you tell us?

I know what happened to that businessman...Timothy Bradshaw, was it?...shouldn’t even be telling you that much. Sorry. Next question?

What do you own that would be hardest to part with? Why?

My turntable and vinyls. I’ve grown quite a collection, covers an entire wall at home. I have all the digital copies, but there’s just something different about vinyl. It might be partly nostalgia, but analog just sounds better to me. More raw.

If you had one day left to live, what would you do with your last day?

I’d definitely spend it going to concerts of all my favorite bands, like the RX Bandits, The Struts, Fruit Bats, and The Strokes, to name a few.

Thursday, 6 October 2016

The Gilded Cage by Judy Alter

An award-winning novelist, Judy Alter is the author of several fictional biographies of women of the American West. In The Gilded Cage she has turned her attention to the late nineteenth century in her home town, Chicago, to tell the story of the lives of Potter and Cissy Palmer, a high society couple with differing views on philanthropy and workers’ right. She is also the author of six books in the Kelly O’Connell Mysteries series. With the 2014 publication of The Perfect Coed, she introduced the Oak Grove Mysteries.

Her work has been recognized with awards from the Western Writers of America, the Texas Institute of Letters, and the National Cowboy Museum and Hall of Fame. She has been honored with the Owen Wister Award for Lifetime Achievement by WWA and inducted into the Texas Literary Hall of Fame and the WWA Hall of Fame.

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Skype: juju1938

About the Book

Chicago, from swampland to host of the 1893 World Columbian Exposition, as lived by two leading historical figures: tycoon and hotelier Potter Palmer and his activist wife Bertha Honoré Palmer who fought for women s rights and help for the poor. A story of love, major historical events, class warfare, intrigue, a forbidden love interest, and murder. A history of Chicago s colorful Gilded Age.

Get it today on Amazon!

Monday, 3 October 2016

Blackbeard's Daughter by Diana Strenka

I have a Bachelor's degree in Psychology, and a Master's Degree in Education. I have authored and self-published several short stories on Smashwords and Amazon. One such title is Rescuing the Titanic, a fictional account of the Californian arriving before the Titanic sinking. I have also published several nonfiction articles for HubPages on medieval and renaissance historical figures.

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About the Book

Colonial dreams have become piratical nightmares. Margaret's life takes one disastrous turn after the other as she confronts the perils of murder, war, and revenge. When her father decides to pursue criminal mischief aboard a pirate's vessel, Margaret joins him in an effort to save his life. Though unsuccessful, Margaret discovers the unforgettable treasure that her father has left her: love, laughter, and an unquenchable spirit for adventure.

Get it today on Amazon!

Keep reading for an interview with Blackbeard the Pirate from Blackbeard's Daughter:

Where were you born, and what was it like growing up there?

I was born in England in 1680. My house was a prison. I hated it there. My parents were horrible for what they did to Elid. Horrible! But, I showed them! I made them pay for what they did to Elid! I treated my servants with respect! I didn't follow in their terrible footsteps, and I didn't endure their legacy. I created my own!

Did you have a close relationship with your family?

I loved my wife, Eleanor. I had two children, Margaret and Thomas. I wasn't the perfect father, you see. I had my flaws. But I loved them, and despite all of this, they still loved me. I just wished I could have protected them in the end.

Who is your enemy? What makes you enemies?

Anyone who would dare defy me, or my family, becomes my enemy! You are also my enemy if you stand in the way of my treasures!

Tell us a little about your world, and where you fit in?

I am a pirate in colonial America. I don't fit in with society. I break all rules and conventions. I am myself!

What are your goals? What would you like to achieve?

I would like to leave my children with a legacy they will always remember. I want to give them all of my treasure, and I want them to never have to want for anything!

What is the most important lesson you've learned about life?

I have learned that it's important to always be true to who you are, and to live your life to the fullest. You cannot predict tomorrow, but you can enjoy your life right here and now.

Where is the best place to visit in your world? What places should visitors avoid?

The best place to visit would be the ocean, of course! There's nothing like being in the middle of the open sea, where all your troubles are behind you. Of course, if you are a merchant, you should avoid any and all pirate ships! We will come for you!

Have you ever been in love? How did that work out for you?

I was in love twice. My first love was kidnapped by Indians, and butchered by English troops. My second love died of consumption. As you can see, it didn't work out for me very well.

What kind of clothing do you prefer to wear?

My best clothing is my captain's gear: my lit fuses inside my thick beard! It scares the devil out of anyone that crosses my path!

What was your greatest achievement?

My greatest achievement was being a father to my two children, Margaret and Thomas. They challenged me to be a better man than I really am.

Name some of your bad habits.

Piracy, drinking too much ale, and letting my wicked temper run loose.

What do you regret most in your life? Why?

I regret leaving Thomas and Margaret when they needed me. I was a coward! I should never have abandoned my family.