Tuesday, February 26, 2013

BOOK REVIEW: WOMAN OF SUBSTANCE by Annette Bower


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Annette will be awarding a $25 Amazon Gift Card to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour, and a $10 Amazon Gift Card to a randomly drawn host. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.


"You will never understand what it means to be fat.” With those words, grad student Robbie Smith begins the Fat-Like-Me project. In order to support her thesis, she puts on a fat suit to measure people’s reactions to the new her.

Accused of embezzling funds, Professor Jake Proctor returns home to spend quality time with the only father he has ever known. There, he meets an intriguing overweight woman who reminds him of his late grandmother. She’s witty, charming, and cares deeply for those around her, including his dying grandfather.

When Robbie meets Jake while she’s in disguise, she deceives him for all the right reasons. But how long can she maintain the deception before Jake discovers that she is not who he believes her to be?

With a fascinating look at falling in love with the inner person, instead of just the outside, Ms. Bower has penned a touching and powerful romance with Woman of Substance.

In some ways I dislike pigeon-holing this as a romance, because it is so much more. This story also features strong friendships between women, between peers and between an elderly man, and a young woman as well as spotlighting the importance of family. Its depth is its strength, as the author could have made this a much shallower tale, but opted to create a book full of three dimensional characters who ran a gamut of emotions during this tale. It's insightful, and really helps the reader walk a mile in another persons shoes (just as our heroine does). The romance is believable and sweet, the villain annoying and realistic, and the conflict was just right.

If you're looking for a book with character, one that will leave your heart sighing as you turn the final page, I recommend Woman of Substance. Annette Bower is a talented author, and I'll be on the lookout for more stories from her.

About the Author: Annette Bower writes about women in family and women in love and women’s quest for love. Her short stories are published in magazines and anthologies in Canada, United States and in the United Kingdom.

Her first sweet contemporary romance Moving On, A Prairie Romance is e-published by XoXo Publishing™. Her second novel which is a blend of sweet romance and women’s fiction, Woman of Substance is e-published by Soul Mate Publishing.

Annette Bower lives and writes stories from a high rise where she can see the immediate hustle and bustle of downtown Regina and experience the changes in the grain fields throughout the Saskatchewan seasons.

Find Annette online at

Website: www.AnnetteBower.com
Blog: www.annettebower.com/blog
Twitter: @bowerannette
Facebook: http://tinyurl.com/arezhhm
Author of Moving On A Prairie Romance with Amazon
Christmas Wishes with XoXo Publishers with Amazon

Thursday, February 21, 2013

The Wisteria Series by Bisi Leyton


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Bisi will award a $15 Amazon GC to one randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour. Remember, the more you comment, the better your chances of winning.

Sixteen year old Wisteria Kuti has two options—track the infected around the Isle of Smythe or leave the only known safe haven and face a world infested with flesh eating biters. But even with well-armed trackers, things go wrong and Wisteria ends up alone facing certain death, until she is rescued by the mysterious Bach. Uninfected, Bach is able to survive among the hordes of living dead.

Eighteen year old Bach, from a race known as The Family, has no interest in human affairs. He was sent here to complete his Great Walk and return home as a man—as a Sen Son. The Family regard humans as Dirt People, but Bach is drawn to this Terran girl, whom he has never seen before, but somehow knows.

Hunted by flesh eaters, cannibals, and the mysterious blood thirsty group called Red Phoenix, Wisteria and Bach make their way back to the Isle of Smythe, a community built on secrets and lies.


Sixteen-year-old Wisteria has embraced her deep bond with eighteen-year-old Bach, a member of a supernatural race called the Family, despite the risk of his family finding out. Should Bach’s people discover his bond with a human, Wisteria will be guaranteed a painful and bloody death—but somehow, being together is more important.

Their bond is tested when empirics, an elite group of Family investigators, are sent to the Isle of Smythe under the orders of Bach’s father to find artifacts stolen by the humans. They’re to find the artifacts at any cost. Among the empirics is Bach’s old friend, the stunning Alba, who has learned about Bach and Wisteria’s secret relationship, and surprisingly accepts this. With no one else in the Family to turn to, she becomes Bach’s ally and confidant, but possibly more.

As the empirics start to take over the town, Wisteria is torn between trusting Bach and the safety of the humans on Smythe. She soon realizes that she and Bach are on opposite sides of the war between the Family and Humans, and there is no middle ground. One of them must choose a side.

About the Author:Bisi Leyton was born in East London in 1978. She grew up in London, Nigeria and the States, listening to the stories life and love from aunts, cousins and big sisters.She lives in London, but has worked around Europe including France, Germany, Ireland, Belgium and the Czech Republic. She has a fondness for reading graphic novels.






Find Bisi online at

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Wisteriabooks
Current Blog: http://bisileyton.blogspot.com/
Old Blog: http://bisileyton.wordpress.com/
Twitter: @bisileyton
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/Bisileyton


Sign up on Bisi's mailing list and receive a free short story from Smashwords--"Paranoia".

Monday, February 18, 2013

BOOK REVIEW: MINOTAUR REVISITED by David Gelber

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. David will be awarding a $100 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter at the conclusion of this and his virtual book tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops in the review tour.





Legend states that the Minotaur was confined to the Labyrinth, slain by Theseus and then laid to rest by thousands of years of Greek mythology. But, the truth is far different. Read the Minotaur’s own words as he recounts his full life as god, king, warrior, matchmaker, midwife, monk, sage, father, mother, husband and, most of all, witness. The fierce Minotaur lived to see and be a part of the best and worst of humanity during a life spanning thousands of years. Part bull, part human, the Minotaur struggled to find his place in this world and, in the end, left his unique mark on history.

I wasn't sure what to expect when I opened this book. I love mythology, though, so I wanted to give this unique chance to hear directly from the horse's bull's mouth what he had to say. And, I'm glad I did.

The Minotaur, in this offering, is a suave, cultured creature who appears before a large group of students to tell his story--and thus it begins.

Minotaur Revisited reminded me of a subdued History of the World. There are definite moments of light-heartedness (I loved his dog named Ramen "like the noodles" and his influence on Pharoah's army as they are chasing the Israelites). Yes, the Minotaur knew Pharaoh, Moses, Joshua--he raised the first Queen of Sheba--he had a hand in several other important episodes of historical significance.

The book isn't all humorous, though; he was present at the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus and it had a profound influence on this mythical creature. There was also some very sad moments in the book--no spoilers, but watch for Tarzan-like character.

Even though he escapes from his original labyrinth home, he soon finds that the entire world--no, his entire existence--is a labyrinth through which he must travel. Each time he thinks he might have found true freedom, he runs up against a dead end: Vlad (the inspiration for Dracula) and Jack the Ripper.

It's not just actual historical personages he meets--he also encounters Belle's sister is a "Beauty and the Beast" vignette.

Kudos to David Gelber for such an ambitious undertaking.

About the Author:David Gelber, a New York native, is the seventh of nine sons and one of three to pursue medicine. He graduated from Johns Hopkins University in 1980 and went on to graduate medical school in 1984 from the University of Rochester. He completed his residency at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, Texas, followed by three years as attending surgeon at Nassau County Medical Center in Long Island, N.Y. Gelber has since joined Coastal Surgical Group in Houston, Texas.

Gelber has been a surgeon for more than 20 years, but over the last few years he began to pursue his passion for writing, initially with his debut novel, Future Hope (Emerald Book Company, January 2010). The novel speculates about future Earth and what the world might have been like if man had not succumbed to temptation in the Garden of Eden. Joshua and Aaron is a sequel to Future Hope and follows the battle of wills that transpires between unsung hero Joshua Smith and satanic Aaron Diblonski.

Dr. Gelber has added two books about surgery, Behind the Mask and Under the Drapes, both of which provide the reader with a view of the world of surgery rarely seen by those outside the medical professions.

"Last Light" is an apocalyptic short story which starts off asking the question: "What would happen if nobody ever was sick or injured?"

Minotaur Revisited is an entertaining romp through history seen through the eyes of Quint, the famed half bull half man monster of Greek Mythology. It was released in October 2012.

Gelber was raised in reformed Judaism, but joined the Presbyterian Church 15 years ago. He is married with three teenage children, four dogs and 24 birds of various species. His interests include horse racing, mechanical Swiss watches and, of course, writing.

THE AUTHOR'S VIEW: RYSHIA KENNIE


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. At each stop, Ryshia will award one commenter an ebook copy of From the Dust, a historical romance set in Depression Era Saskatchewan. The grand prize for the tour will be an autographed copy of From the Dust, a book unique bookmark, and a Region 1 DVD of East of Borneo, a 1931 B&W movie. Please click the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

I was asked to write about the view outside my window, so I’m going to take you to the kitchen window as I write this on the last day in January. It’s one of the coldest days this winter, minus twenty-seven Celsius. Too cold to be outside, even the dog scurries out and is back at the door at lightning speed. But when I look out, I forget how bone-chilling the cold is. Instead, I see velvet layers of white draping the fir trees and deep banks of glistening snow curving over the backyard and reflecting against a crystalline, prairie-blue sky. On an extremely cold day like this, the sky is usually very clear, just a sheet of aqua blue that makes you think of a warm summer day. Until you open the door and the frost bitten air swishes in on a cloud that creates an instant chilly steam.

But cold aside, it’s a beautiful, postcard worthy day. The naked poplar and elm trees provide a stark contrast to the blue sky. The squirrels have disappeared, as they do when it gets this cold and there’s not a bird in sight, except, of course, the sparrows. They’re gathering at the bird feeder delighting in some riotous kind of way at not having to scare off anyone not of their flock. The other birds have gone the way of the squirrels, hiding until the cold lifts. So it’s just me in the warm safety of the house and the sparrows who seem impervious to the cold.

So here I am looking out my kitchen window and I can see another place, one I visited not that long ago. But that place is hot and dry, with prickly plants that have thorns and nettles that stick into tiny cracks and openings on the dog’s pads. A place where there is no snow and a little bird struts in it’s silly kind of way running from here to there rather than seeming to fly anywhere. I remember that bird, the road runner, from the cartoon where Wile E Coyote was always trying to get him. How different the real bird is from that cartoon. My imagination has taken me back to Arizona. I remember the nearby mountains and the stories that riddled those mountains and rivaled the cacti for prominence. I’d envisioned barren, stretches of dry land pocked with cactus and instead I saw rolling hills that rapidly filled into mountains, stately cactus and a beauty that was both austere and yet inspiring. There was an odd mix of urban bracketed by wilderness that repeated over and over again. The mountains shadowed everything and maybe it was the arid land but there was a mystery about those craggy peaks that I remembered long after I left.

Desert must be on my mind today for my thoughts travel across the globe as they flit backwards and to another trip – the African desert and one of the Kasbahs of Morocco. I remember running through the Kasbah with an irate water carrier – a man who literally sells water right behind me. He was dressed in bright red with pots hanging around his neck. He was the perfect subject for a picture. He thought not and shouted words that I couldn’t understand before giving chase. Turned out a picture was not free. How was I to know? But running through the Kasbah sticks in my mind today and I know there’s another story there as the rich, earthy smell of spices, the noise of the crowded Kasbah and the echo of yesterday’s world runs parallel to today in my memory.

Arizona. Morocco. They’re both places where I want to set a story and that’s the view from my window, one mixed up in imagination and reality – and that’s the way it is today on one of the coldest days of the year.

About the Author:
Ryshia Kennie is the author of two published romances. From the Dust is a romance set during the Great Depression. Her second book, Ring of Desire, was set against a backdrop of magic and mystery, in medieval England. An award winning author, her recent novels now focus on suspense and women’s fiction – always with a hint or even a dollop, of romance. The Canadian prairies are home where she lives with her husband and one opinionated Irish Terrier.

Visit her website at http://www.ryshiakennie.com.

Other places to find Ryshia online

Author blog: ryshia.blogspot.com
Author on Facebook: www.facebook.com/ryshia.kennie
Author on Twitter: twitter.com/ryshia
Author at Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/author/show/1400598.Ryshia_Kennie



In the heart of the jungle lies more than just the hint of death.

Leading a scientific excursion into the Borneo rain forest is a life long dream for entomologist, Garrett Cole. But when her guide turns up dead and headless, her abilities are tested. As the dense foliage pushes her team further from the river, they are lost. Every shimmer of sound is a threat, and when a blonde haired, half-naked giant emerges from nowhere, she wants to run. But there are no options – she needs help.

Raised in the lush cradle of the Borneo jungle, Aidan is as unconventional as the fact that he has no last name. While the city is home, he returns to the jungle for peace and solitude. As a PI, how can he ignore the mystery this group and their dead guide poses? Leading them in a convoluted trek in a bid for answers he soon finds himself in a clash of wills with their alluring leader and answers that slide dangerously close to the tribe he loves.

In the jungle’s torrid heat they find unexpected solace in each others arms. But faced with death and betrayal, in a battle of wits that puts lives on the edge, can anyone be trusted?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

BOOK REVIEW: LADY IN DEED by Ann Montclair


This post is part of a virtual book tour organzied by Goddess Fish Promotions. Ann will be awarding a $30.00 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.



Piety or passion… What’s a lady to do?

Lady Mary Rutherford believed she would live her entire life as a nun. But when King Henry VIII’s reformist movement makes practicing religion a dangerous proposition, Mary is forced to begin a new life with a family she doesn't know. Worse, she must become lady of the manor, a role for which she feels sorely unprepared.

After a decade of service to his king, Lord Trenton Stanley returns home to find his estate in ruins, his fortune depleted, and his doddering father drooling over Mary—a woman Trent fears has been installed to replace his mother. Trent strives to rebuild his life, but his desire for Mary becomes a serious distraction he can’t seem to ignore.

Though Mary is anxious to prove she’s a worthy lady, she’s tempted by the rakish Trent into deeds most unladylike…


~~~~~


This book is a fun read.... a look back at the old Regency romances I used to love to read, full of misunderstandings, lies, problems besetting the main couple, the works.

Lady Mary Rutherford first meets Lord Stanley--who she has been told is her guardian and sponsor; only, Lord Stanley claims not to have a ward and thinks she is a whore. And the fun begins from there.

The course of all true romance, especially in a Regency romance, does not run smooth--if it did, it would be a boring book and LADY IN DEED is anything by boring. I don't want to give away any spoilers, but suffice it to say that Ms. Montclair does a good job of keeping you guessing which way the wind will blow. Good job!
~~~~~


About the Author:
Ann Montclair writes contemporary and historical fiction and is an English professor at a small, rural community college. She was born in Los Angeles, California, where her parents and grown daughter now reside. Ann currently lives in the Finger Lakes region of New York with her husband, son, and a pile of dogs and cats. She enjoys listening to live music, hiking, cycling, cooking, and gardening. She hates dieting but spends a lot of time ruminating on the topic. Her biggest wish is that each of her readers will be inspired to believe in and find their own happily-ever-after, no matter their fears and insecurities. Her motto is Love triumphs! Ann has three published contemporary romance novels: The Billionaire’s Bauble (Soul Mate Publishing 2011), One Wet Summer (Musa Publishing 2012), and Good Things Come in Tall Packages (Musa Publishing 2012). Lady in Deed (Musa Publishing 2012) is her first historical romance. Lady is the Law, another Tudor historical romance, is forthcoming 2013.

Find Ann online at

Web site: www.AnnMontclair.com
Blog: http://annmontclair.wordpress.com/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AnnMontclairFanPage
Twitter: https://twitter.com/AnnMontclair

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

THE WRITER'S VIEW: Leslie McKelvey


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Black Velvet Seductions is giving away a $25 Amazon gift certificate. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Are we talking writing space as in where I write, or writing space as in the inside of my head? Those are vastly different locations, but now that I think about it, they’re really not so dissimilar.

My physical writing space is a laptop on a foldable table in the family room between the television and the fireplace. It’s not very conducive to writing (especially with a husband and three kids), but I’ve learned how to tune out the extraneous noise (and if I can’t I just put on my headphones). There was a time long ago when I wrote at my desk in my bedroom upstairs, but more often than not I was forced to leave my hideaway to tend to my family. Therefore, moving my writing space to the family room was just better logistically. If all goes as planned I’ll have an office in my next house (and not my next life) that I can use in relative privacy and seclusion. Now that my kids are older I suppose I could return to my upstairs retreat, but I’ve become accustomed to the foldable table, my couch, and the almost constant cacophony of my life.

Inside my head it’s far noisier, with characters’ voices and settings demanded to be brought to life (yes, even the scenery speaks to me ). I tend to have brilliant Technicolor dreams, and remembered shards of those dreams often become the people and places I fictionalize. Thankfully, I have a passion for grammar and I can type 80+ wpm, so getting the thoughts from inside my mental writing space to my physical writing space is relatively easy, although I’ll admit my brain sometimes goes faster than my fingers. And, my brain often refuses to shut off even when it is exhausted. Characters keep me up more nights than not working out their dialogue, placement, plot, and storyline. Sometimes I wonder if perhaps noise is part of what makes it work. If I had the quiet, private office in which to write, and a quiet, serene mind at bedtime, would I still write the same? Only time will tell, and for now I’ll do and use what works.

About the Author:
Leslie McKelvey has been writing since she learned to write and her mother still stores boxes of her handwritten stories in the attic. Leslie read her first romance at 12 and was hooked. When her high school Creative Writing teacher told her she needed to be a novelist, she decided to give it a try. Finally, at the ripe old age of...forty-something...her debut novel, Accidental Affair made it into print through Black Velvet Seductions Publishing. The publisher has also contracted two more manuscripts, which will follow Accidental Affair shortly.

Leslie is a war-veteran who served with the U.S. Navy during the Gulf War, and she was among the first groups of women to work the flight deck of an aircraft carrier. During her five years of service she was stationed at NAS Miramar (yes, Miramar used to belong to the NAVY) and was an F-14 Tomcat mechanic. While in San Diego she spent time on the carriers USS Independence, USS Ranger, USS Lincoln, and the USS Nimitz. The final two years of her enlistment were spent on Guam and her squadron frequently deployed to Japan and the Middle East.

She learned everything she knows about firearms and tactics from her police officer husband, who is a weapons expert and firearms instructor for one of the most highly-respected law-enforcement agencies in the world (and one he wishes her NOT to disclose). He is her biggest supporter and her unpaid consultant on everything law-enforcement and weapons related. She has three boys, the oldest of whom will soon be wearing the uniform of a United States Marine (SEMPER FI!). She spends her off-time (kidding...WHAT off-time?) reading, taking pictures, and sending lead down range (that's shooting, for those who are unfamiliar). One of her favorite scents is the smell of gunpowder in the morning....

www.amazonred.wordpress.com


Jack Vaughn is sure his life is over as he tumbles down the wooded hillside onto the deserted two-lane stretch of asphalt. Years of work ended with a single gunshot. Yet, it’s not over. A good Samaritan stops to help him, despite the danger he poses to her.

Laine Wheeler knows better than to stop for strangers on the rural Montana highway near her home, but her conscience won’t allow her to leave an injured man behind. What she doesn’t know is the man is an undercover ATF agent tasked with infiltrating a domestic terrorist group. His cover has been blown and helping him will put her life in danger.

Though there is an instant attraction, Jack knows that beginning a romantic relationship with Laine would be both unfair and unwise. Yet the farther they run, the harder it gets to ignore the feelings that are surging between them.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

BOOK REVIEW: THE DREAM SLAYER by Jill Cooper


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Jill will be awarding an Amazon $50 GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour and a second prize of an EBook Copy of Glistening Haven,a Dystopian Novel to another randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Please click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.



In the young adult teen series Dream Slayer, Natalie Johnson has always dreamed she’s someone else; calm, beautiful, in control. A chosen warrior with a maniacal arch nemesis and a dreamy boyfriend, the type that can make your knees melt and your heart quiver.

Real life is much different. She’s tormented by a bully and endures the sharp tongue of her father, but finds solace in her dreams.

When her bully ends up dead, de ja vu from a dream hits her hard as everything around her begins to fall apart. Whatever killed Sarah in her dreams is now in reality, hunting her from the shadows. And it wants her dead.

Somehow as the lines between reality and nightmare blur, Natalie must discover hidden strength to pull her friends and family back from the brink of madness.

What happens when your dreams start to come true? Especially your dreams about being a demon slayer. That's what happens to Natalie Johnson in this first installment of the Dream Slayer series.

The story starts out with echoes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer as Natalie saves the day from a demon and a run-away bus. Unfortunately, in the "real" world, another Natalie Johnson is being bullied at school. There's a juxtaposition between the two Natalies that they are not aware of, but that the author reveals early in the book. Natalie Johnson the chubby and bullied (both at home and at school) has always had detailed dreams--and in her dreams she's beautiful, powerful--oh, and a demon slayer. What Natalie doesn't know, though, is that even when she's not dreaming, the characters of her dreams are living their own life.

What's a girl to do when there starts to be slippage between her real life and her dream life? That's the premise for the series.

The series seems inspired by the television series, Buffy the Vampire Slayer: there's Natalie (Buffy), Mr. Buckle (her Watcher), her best friend Tristan (Zander), and a cheerleader nemesis (Cordelia). But, Jill takes the inspiration and makes it into something uniquely her own.

What chubby, bullied girl doesn't dream of being someone different--someone powerful and in charge of her own life? In this series, it comes true for Natalie. I don't want to give away any spoilers, but it will be interesting to see the next installment of the series to see how the author is going to handle two story lines that intersect when Natalie in this life is becoming more like the Natalie in the dream world.

Although this book could be dark, part of its charm is that there are many moments of lightness--especially in the dialogue:

Morach’s eyes grew even more afraid. Natalie gripped the hilt in both hands on final approach. “It’s just us now, Morach. Maybe you should say a little prayer.”

“I don’t understand. It was all so well thought out. Why exactly won’t you die?” Morach backed up farther as the tip of her sword pushed into his neck. He trembled. “You wouldn’t kill an unarmed demon, would you?”

“I think I’ve proved I would. Six times or so.”

“Let’s cut a deal. Listen, I have a very extensive DVD collection. I’m sure we can work something out.”

“I don’t make deals. Do I look like a lawyer to you? I don’t think so. I’ve been waiting a long time for this, and I plan on enjoying it.”
I am glad this is available as a print copy--I'm going to get it for the library. I think it will be a good addition.

About the Author:
Jill Cooper loves tea more than coffee and is obsessed over finding that perfect recipe.She was born in 1977 and shared a room with her sister for 18 years. Early on she had dreams of writing romances and mysteries. It was something she did when most kids were trying out for softball or out riding bikes.

She's always loved dark mysteries, but also enjoys a great comedy so she tries to include both these things in everything she writes, one way or another.

She lives in Danvers, MA with two cats, a toddler, a husband, and a 1964 yellow taxi. Her life is chaotic, but fun. She can be contacted at www.JillACooper.com.

Twitter: www.twitter.com/jillybug
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jill-Cooper/319251368110396

Monday, February 11, 2013

BOOK REVIEW: TO DANCE IN LIRADON by Adrienne Clarke


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Adrienne will be awarding winner's choice of a Kindle touch, Nook Simple Touch, or a $100 Apple gift card, and one crystal Faerie necklace similar to what Brigid wore to the Faerie ball to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.



Seventeen-year-old Brigid O'Flynn is an outcast. A chance encounter with the Faerie Queen left her tainted in the eyes of the villagers, who blame the Faerie for the village’s missing women and children. Desperate to win the village’s acceptance, Brigid agrees to marry her childhood friend: Serious, hardworking, Connell Mackenna. But when Connell disappears before their wedding, Brigid's hopes are shattered. Blamed for her fianc√©’s death, Brigid fears she will suffer the same fate as the other village outcasts, the mysterious Willow Women. Lured into Faerie by their inhuman lovers, and cast out weak and broken, the Willow Women spend their lives searching for the way back into Faerie. When Connell suddenly reappears, Brigid is overjoyed, but everything is not as it seems. Consumed by his desire for beauty and celebration, Connell abandons his responsibilities, and Brigid soon finds herself drawn into a passionate, dangerous world of two.

When Brigid discovers the truth behind Connell's transformation she’s forced to choose between two men and two worlds. Brigid’s struggle leads her into glittering, ruthless Faerie, where she must rescue her true love from a terrible sacrifice or lose him forever.
To Dance in Liradon is a true faerie tale--a beautiful tale of true love.

Brigid dreams of finding her true love--but has trouble seeing who he might be. Raised on her father's stories of true love, she knows there is something for her--but what is only revealed after much searching.

The tension builds throughout the story and the reader is pulled right along with Brigid as she learns the true meaning of love. Kudos to the author on a riveting first novel. I'll be keeping my eye out for more books by Ms. Clarke.

About the Author:
I think I became a writer because the world inside my head was so real and vivid, sometimes more so than the outside world. In some sense I have lived parallel lives, present in my real and imaginary lives in different ways. Because much of my childhood was spent searching for faeries or reading about them, it is natural that my work encompasses fairy tale themes and other magical elements. In the words of Tennessee Williams, forget reality, give me magic!

Adrienne has previously published short stories in The Storyteller, Beginnings Magazine, New Plains Review, and in the e-zines A Fly in Amber, Grim Graffiti, Les Bonnes Fees, The Altruist, The Devilfish Review, and Rose Red Review. Her short story, Falling was awarded second place in the 2008 Alice Munro short fiction contest. To Dance in Liradon is her first published novel.

An avid reader of fairy tales and other magical stories, a thread of the mysterious or unexpected runs through all of her work. When she’s not writing Adrienne can be found searching for faeries along with her daughters Callista and Juliet.

Find Adrienne online

Website: http://www.adrienneclarkewriter.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/#!/ToDanceInLiradon
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6436251.Adrienne_Clarke
Twitter: https://twitter.com/clarkeadrienne

Friday, February 08, 2013

EXCERPT TOUR: SMITTEN AT FIRST SIGHT by Marie Astor


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions.Marie will be awarding to five randomly drawn commenters at the end of the tour, one of the following five custom-designed jewelry prizes:

Prize 1: Blue quartz three strand necklace with sterling silver clasp
Prize 2: Jade and prehnite necklace
Prize 3:Green aventurine sterling silver earrings
Prize 4: Smoky quartz sterling silver earrings
Prize 5: Rose quartz sterling silver earrings



Maggie Robin has been dating the irresistibly good-looking, successful Jeffrey Preston for two years. But when Jeffrey proposes marriage a week after Maggie’s college graduation, she is no longer sure if she wants to marry a workaholic TV producer.

Maggie’s doubts culminate when during a ski trip to British Columbia, she meets Taylor Denton, a handsome, free-spirited big mountain skier who is the complete opposite of Jeffrey. It does not take Maggie long to realize that she has fallen in love with Taylor and she decides to break off her engagement with Jeffrey. But just when she thinks she has found the love of her life, an ill-fated misunderstanding tears Maggie and Taylor apart.

A week later, Maggie is told that Taylor has died in a tragic ski accident; yet, her heart refuses to believe in Taylor’s death. When Maggie returns to Taylor’s native town, she learns that Taylor is indeed alive, but has been seriously injured. Resolved to bring her lover back to life Maggie stands by Taylor’s side, convincing him to embrace life again.

At the Fisherman’s Wharf the tables were lined with rough brown paper, which gave the place a casual, homey feel. The air was filled with the mouthwatering aroma of steamed crab and lobster. Endless chatter and laughter filled the room with buzzing energy; everywhere there were cheerful faces, flushed with color from being outdoors all day. Busy waiters carried trays full of beer and wine as they hurried to serve the restaurant’s numerous patrons.

Maggie and Taylor were seated in the back of the restaurant in a corner booth that was sheltered from the noise and commotion of the restaurant.

“This place has great character.” Maggie instantly fell in love with the restaurant’s friendly, relaxing atmosphere.

“Just wait till you try the food.”

“What’s good here?”

“Alaskan crab is the best dish in the house, hands down,” answered Taylor without a moment’s hesitation.

“Okay, then, that’s what I’ll have.” Maggie pushed away the menu.

As they waited for their food, Maggie spotted a stack of crayons in a tiny silver bucket that stood in the middle of the table. She grabbed a crayon and twirled it in her hand, remembering how as a kid, she used to love drawing with the exact same crayons. The floor of her room would be full of discarded sketches, with only a few selected masterpieces stacked on the table to be presented to her parents. Already, she was trying to tell stories with her pictures, and when her dad got her a camera for her seventh birthday she immediately knew that she really wanted to tell stories with photographs: something she had been longing to do ever since.

“What are you thinking about?” Taylor asked, leaning across the table.

“It’s kind of silly.” Maggie blushed.

“Tell me.”

“Well, I was thinking how I had the exact same crayons when I was a kid. Isn’t it weird how sometimes you see something that reminds you of the past, and then it just takes you back to that moment. Sometimes, I wish it were possible to go back in time and get a do-over.”

“I don’t know about that,” said Taylor at length. “If we could go back and change things on a whim, then why care about the choices we make? No, I like knowing that every moment has to be lived to its fullest. That’s what gives meaning to life: knowing what you want and going after it with all your heart because you might never get another chance to do it again.”

“Thank you,” Maggie said.

“For what?”

“For showing me how true that is and for helping me to believe in it.”

“You’re welcome.” Taylor smiled. “But I really think that you are giving me too much credit.”

Maggie shook her head. “How do you do it? Where do you get this certainty of knowing what you want and going after it?” “Well, I don’t always know right off the bat, but I usually figure it out in due time.” Taylor grinned, but then his face grew serious. “I think it has a lot to do with the mountains: when you are up there, everything counts - every choice you make has consequences and that makes everything else in life fall into perspective. At least that’s how it works for me. It’s the reason why I left New York - I did not want to be swallowed up by all that hustle and bustle. I only wish my dad would understand that.”

“Have you tried talking to him?” Maggie ventured.

Taylor nodded. “I tried, but every time we talk we end up butting heads. I guess he is too set in his ways to consider anyone else’s point of view but his own. Now, we mostly call each other on holidays.”

“When was the last time you saw him?”

“Oh, I don’t know…” Taylor rubbed his forehead. “I guess right before I moved out here permanently – four years ago...” “I don’t mean to stick my nose into things, but maybe you could try to talk to him in person?”

“Maybe. I’ll think about it.” Taylor looked away, his voice trailing off, and Maggie could tell that he wanted to close the subject for now.

About the Author:
Marie Astor is the author of contemporary romance novels: This Tangled Thing Called Love, Lucky Charm, On the Rim of Love; romantic suspense: To Catch a Bad Guy; and a short story collection: A Dress in a Window. Marie is also the author of a young adult fantasy adventure novel Over the Mountain and Back.

If you would like to learn more about Marie’s writing, please stop by her website: www.MarieAstor.com or visit her on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/marieastorcollection

Thursday, February 07, 2013

VBT: That Girl Started Her Own Country


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Holy Ghost Writer will be awarding one $15 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Please click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.



A thrilling tale of wrongful-imprisonment, international intrigue and one brave young woman’s fight to free herself from injustice. Meet the beautiful, witty and intelligent Zaydee, aka Princess Jane Doe, as she plays an increasingly complex game of cat and mouse with her captors to free herself from their shackles.


Read an excerpt:

It wasn't real, yet she enjoyed the sound of it more than her birth name. She repeated it in her mind, "Zaydee, Zaydee, Zaydee."

She vaguely recalled that it was her maternal great-grandmother’s name. She worked hard to escape her ugly past. It wasn’t easy to overcome the false headlines such as “Ritual Serial Killer.”

Two more plastic surgeries had made her designer appearance unrecognizable compared to her younger image. Her ill-gotten wealth decreased her former frugality as she began spending more than her yearly interest income on private jet-setting.

Dipping into her principal was not good, she told herself. Yet her self-esteem rose with her image as an international playgirl. She lost track of conquests, ignorant of the countless male and female hearts she had broken. Still, she managed to keep them on a string.

There was only one man that she had fallen in love with, but she kept him distant from her new extravagant lifestyle.

On reflective, lonely nights, Zaydee would sometimes tap into his computer’s server which she had turned into a bot slave. He knew that she had done so when they worked together to catch his friends’ killers, those she was falsely accused of killing.

First she had saved his life, subsequently he returned the favor. He trusted her so much that he didn’t mind that she controlled his computer’s server. But he had no proof she still checked in on him.

It came as a shock to her to learn that he had entered his career as an investigative journalist under a pen name.

How did he get away with that for so long?

It was big news that his real name was Steven F. Larson, splashed across the headline of every newspaper in Europe. Taking on the Bilderbergers had gotten some very powerful people on the offensive.

About the Author: Who is The Holy Ghost Writer?

The mystery of the identity of the author is part of an international contest. The first person to discover the identity of the HG Writer, from the clues found in the Count of Monte Cristo sequels, will receive a reward of $1000. Write to prize@sultanofmontecristo.com in order to win this reward along with letting us know the clues that led you to discovering the identity of the author. Should you wish your discovery to be known in the press, that opportunity will also be afforded. Those that already know the author or have worked with him/her will not qualify. Good luck.

website http://www.thatgirlstartedherowncountry.com
twitter: www.twitter.com/sultanofsalem
facebook: www.facebook.com/sultanofsalem
pinterest: www.pinterest.com/sultanofsalem

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Super Book Blast: Saffron Nights by Liz Everly


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Liz will be awarding organic saffron and cedar bath gel and handmade soap to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour (US ONLY). Click on the banner to see the other stops on the tour.



Wherever they travel, there’s an aphrodisiac waiting to whet their appetites…

Brazil…Hawaii…India….As a food writer, Maeve has just been handed the hottest opportunity of her career. She’s being sent on an international research tour for an aphrodisiac cookbook. The downside is that she has to travel with rock star photographer and womanizer Jackson Dodds. And the upside is that she has to travel with Jackson Dodds. Because once they meet, Maeve understands why he’s been named “America’s Most Eligible Bachelor”—and despite her best intentions, all she can think about is putting their arousing recipes to the test…

Sexy and talented, Jackson can have any woman he desires. But lately, the thrill is gone—until he lays eyes on Maeve, who exudes sensuality like no one else. She’s determined to keep things professional, but he knows the attraction is mutual. And as they travel the world, sampling warming saffron, juicy papaya, silky avocado, rare herbs and teas—and a mushroom whose very aroma sends women to heights of ecstasy—both discover a hunger they’ve never known, and don’t want to resist, even amid unexpected danger…

Read an excerpt:

She acted like she didn’t even know he was there. He watched her full lips curve around the spoon as she stared intently into the bowl. What would they feel like on him? She was not paying one ounce of attention to him, so he let his eyes linger on her toes. They were simply perfect toes, topped off with a splash of bright feminine pink, and her feet looked porcelain smooth and inviting. But he held back. Christ—what if a woman like this did respond to him and then it went horribly bad, as most of his affairs had? They might be stuck together on some godforsaken mountain in India or Italy and be miserable.

So, he held his breath, while his heart raced, but kept his eyes on her feet and slurped the stew. After all, this was his career. He couldn’t risk it—even for Maeve. Especially for Maeve.

“What are you doing, Jackson?” She said and took another bite.

“Eating soup and, ah, looking at your toes. They, ah, look really good,” he said.

“Maybe you need some coffee, Jackson,” Maeve said, laughing.

“Sorry, I just never knew that you had such pretty feet,” he said and smiled.

“Well, you’re using that word a lot. Pretty. You’re barking up the wrong tree if—”

“We work together,” Jackson stammered. “You know, I should never have mentioned how pretty you feet are. Or how pretty you are, period. I’m sorry.”

What was happening to him? Usually so confident, here he was stammering around Maeve like a schoolboy.

He held the bowl up to his mouth to drink the last drop, his tongue licking his lips in utter abandonment.

He held up his fingers and wiggled. “You don’t know this about me, but I give an incredible foot massage.”

She slammed her bowl down. “Are you coming on to me?”

About the Author:
Liz Everly is a passionate cook, writer, and traveler. Exploring food and romance in Saffron Nights, Liz ombines her lifelong love of action-packed romance with her culinary expertise. She loves to interact with readers. Please follow her on Twitter @Lizeverly1, check out her website, find her on Facebook, and blogging at http://www.ladysmut.com.

Find the book at her publisher

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

SBB: WIND'S ARIA by Tessa Stockton


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Tessa will be awarding a $50 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during this tour and her reviews tour. Please click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.



Elected as the Songstress, Aria takes her place on the sacred platform to sing before every dawn. As long as she does so, peace and abundant life belong to her people. One morning, amidst a strange wind that brings with it a curse in its eerie howl, Aria loses her ability to make music. But the encroaching death that transpires isn’t her biggest tragedy. It’s that she adores the cause of her blunder, for he’s a magnificent winged creature who’s stolen more than her voice.

Read an excerpt:

“Who are you?”

He pushed further back into the shadows as she strode closer. “Someone you need not know.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

When he didn’t answer, she sighed.

“What a strange, terrible day,” she mumbled. “Well, at least tell me your name . . .”

He stood, speechless, knowing he shouldn’t be there at all—conversing with a Meleyan—especially not their musical deliverer that he was set to doom the day after tomorrow.

A peculiar grumbling interrupted her insistence, to his relief.

“Sorry.” She patted her stomach. He could see, even in the blackened night, how her face turned a deeper shade of red than her hair. “I’ve forgotten to eat. I guess I’m hungrier than I realized.”

He plucked an apple from the tree he’d nearly become a part of and held it out to her. The girl approached tentatively. She reached for the fruit but recoiled when her fingers brushed his.

“Is touching me so horrible?” he asked.

Her jaw dropped open and her delicate brow furrowed. She inclined her head. “It . . . hurt.”

“How?” he asked, for her fingers felt good to him, soothing. Warm. He wanted to try again.

“I don’t know how to explain . . .”

“Hum.” Unsatisfied with the answer, he tossed the apple to her and watched as she crunched her teeth into it.

About the Author:
A veteran of the performing arts and worldwide missions, Tessa Stockton also contributed as a writer/editor for ministry publications, ghostwriter for political content, and she headed a column on the topic of forgiveness. Today she writes romance and intrigue novels in a variety of genres. In addition to her fantasy romance, WIND’S ARIA, she’s the author of suspense/thriller, THE UNSPEAKABLE, political intrigue/romance, THE UNFORGIVABLE, and a literary short story, LOVE AND LULL, with more in the works.

www.TessaStockton.com
https://twitter.com/TessaStockton
https://www.facebook.com/tessastockton

VBT: DRAWN TO YOU by Janel Rodriguez Ferrer


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Janel will be awarding Winner's Choice of a $25 gift card to iTunes (music) or, Capezio (dance), or Utrecht (art supplies) to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Please click on the tour banner to see the other stops in the tour.



I write on my laptop. So while sometimes I write notes by hand, say on subway rides to and from my day job, for the most part I do my creating straight from keyboard to screen. You’d think with the kind of flexibility that comes from using a laptop and living in New York City that I’d cart my laptop around with me to interesting places--like a park, or an artist’s studio, or at least to a local coffeehouse—but no. For the most part I end up writing at my desk at home. Okay, sometimes for a change of scene I take the laptop into the—gasp!—living room, or even to the kitchen table (particularly if I want to snack while I'm writing), but the bulk of my writing is done in the perfect-size writing pocket that is the corner of my bedroom, at my simple, honey-colored, Parsons-inspired desk.

If you take a look at the photograph, you might notice that around my desk I have arranged a few personal items for decoration, fun, or inspiration. Included are: a statue of St. Michael the Archangel on the shelf above (similar to one mentioned in Drawn to You); an unfinished painting on canvas propped against the wall; and (this will only make sense to you if you are familiar with the world of Doctor Who) a little TARDIS on my desk from which an action figure of the Tenth Doctor beckons an action figure of Sarah Jane Smith to join him inside and travel the stars.

I have pumped out many a page from that little corner, so it is truly my writing space. However, there is one thing about the photograph that is untruthful about my reality: It is neat. I usually have piles of paper or books on top of my desk (near the TARDIS), but I didn’t like the way that looked in the photo, so I moved them before taking this snap.

As you can see, the view outside my writing space isn’t terribly exciting--especially in the winter when I am left with just the black skeletons of trees to gaze upon. Also I usually have the curtains drawn in the winter, anyway, as it is often too grey and cold out to have them open. When I do have them open, though, I basically just have a view of my fire escape and the back end of another building to look at. But in the warmer months, when the birds return and stop by to rest on the branches of the trees, I enjoy spotting the odd cardinal or blue jay and listening to the haunting sounds of a pair of mourning doves (they are always in pairs) as they coo back and forth to each other. When those moments happen, I feel a bit like I’m in the country instead of a city.

Rock Your Destiny!

Gina Santiago is a thirteen-year-old "Nuyorican" with rock star dreams, so when she's accepted into the prestigious New York Academy of Arts and Talents for art instead of music, she's crushed. To make matters worse, the student body at the Upper East Side school is divided into "schollies" (students on scholarship, like her) and "dollies" (rich kids with "dollars"). But Gina discovers that there is one thing that brings schollies and dollies-and dancers, singers, actors, artists, and musicians-together: music! Maybe she can make her dreams come true after all....

Read an excerpt:

I began entertaining thoughts of becoming an art school dropout when I remembered Angel Dominguez and felt inspired to explore the halls a bit. Maybe I can find a classroom he actually studied in, I thought, feeling the smile return to my face.

Jogging slightly, I headed for the staircase when I remembered the song about Angel that I had started earlier. Humming it to myself, I began adding more lyrics in my head.

I will find you even though you aren’t really here

I’ll find you standing by my side

Hear you whisper in my ear….

And then, almost as if someone did whisper in my ear, I stopped short at the bulletin board in the lobby. A flyer had caught my eye. It read:

AUDITIONS-AUDITIONS-AUDITIONS

Your favorite rock band,

UNCOUTH YOUTH

is searching for their next great guitarist/vocalist

Could that be YOU?????

Listen to our sound, and then come see for yourself.

Saturday, September 15th.

Please call Nick at 917-555-7654 for more information.

I drew in a deep breath. Then I giggled. Then I laughed out loud. If my mother thought that that she was going to keep me away from music, she sure was wrong. My first day at NYAAT wasn’t even half-over, and I was already had an idea of how to make my dreams—and her nightmares—come true.

About the Author:
Like her main character, Gina Santiago, Janel is a Nuyorican who attended a Manhattan high school of the arts as an art major.

Unlike Gina, she isn’t very good at guitar and doesn’t have a rock band to call her own.

Truth be told, she never dreamed of becoming a guitarist. Instead, from the time she was a tween she dreamed of becoming a published author of a book series. And since you're reading this, you can see that her dream has come true!

Her first hint of an idea for the Arts-Angels series began way back when she received a pendant of St. Michael the Archangel for her sixteenth birthday.

She lives with her twin sister, Jennifer (who got a pendant of St. Joan of Arc that same birthday but hasn’t written any books about it), in New York City.

Website: www.theartsangels.com
Blog: http://janelrodriguezferrer.wordpress.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JanelRodriguezFerrer
E-mail: janelrodriguezferrer (at) theartsangels (dot) com.

Monday, February 04, 2013

BOOK REVIEW: MY FALLEN by Ashlyn Mathews


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Ashlyn will be awarding a backlist eBook in the winner's choice of format at every stop. The grand prize will be a jewelry holder (similar to the one in the attached picture) to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour, and coffee beans from Seattle's Cafe Vitta and Seattle Theo organic chocolate bar to a randomly drawn host. (US ONLY) Click on the banner to see the other stops on the tour.



When a normally quiet and polite Vampire Slayer is tasked to help an arrogant and selfish demon, only trouble can ensue.

Guilt-ridden by a mistake that cost her fellow Slayers their lives and the subsequent tarnished reputation of her brother’s business, Slayer-born Elise Castle agrees to work with the sexy, but arrogant and selfish, Xavier Doom, by bringing in his demon-turned-vampire friend. If she succeeds, her brother can hire more Slayers while Xavier’s status guarantees them more clients.

Xavier is a Fallen, a special kind of demon with an insatiable appetite for women, money and power. When his best friend is kidnapped and turned into a vampire, he hires the best Slayer money can buy. If the Slayer fails, Xavier stands to lose not only his childhood friend, but the opportunity to skyrocket his wealth with the top secret information hidden in his friend’s mind.

Xavier’s arrogance grates on her nerves while his concern and charm reels Elise in. But can she give her heart to a creature like her father, a Fallen, who had abandoned his family for the appeal of money and power? Or will she see Xavier for the good and loyal man he truly is?

Defiant and strong-willed, Elise is a challenge. Yet her strength and courage appeals to Xavier while her no sex policy has him hot for her. As his feelings for her grow, he must make a decision. Give his heart and soul to a woman who can only offer him her love, or walk away from her and seize the chance for more money and power?

Lives and friendships are at stake while love and loyalty is put to the test. Will Elise and Xavier come out unscathed and together? Or will a secret from Elise’s past tear them apart?

I have to admit-- at the beginning of this book I did NOT like Xavier Doom. He is arrogant and the first words out of his mouth are pretty crude declarations of what he wants to do with Elise. And, personally, I wish there had been more tension between the two rather than Elise and Xavier giving in to their desires as easily as they did.

Apart from that small matter, though, I really enjoyed the book. It almost reads like the second book of series--and I hope Ashlyn has more books in store about this world. There are several of the secondary characters I would like to know more about--Ana and Fox's story; whether or not Drake will get his HEA; the stories of the other Knights, for a few.

Elise has trouble trusting Xavier--or any man beside Drake--and once the author reveals the reason, her actions are entirely understandable. And, as the relationship develops both sets of barriers start coming down.

I look forward to more books by this author--especially if set in this same world.

About the Author:
Ashlyn Mathews is a paranormal and contemporary romance author. She is fascinated with strong men and women who walk a fine line between good and evil, happiness and loneliness, and duty to family and love.

A big fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Japanese Anime, she incorporates various weapons into her paranormal romances and gives her characters out-of-this-world names just because she can. She lives in the inspiring gloom of the Pacific Northwest with her husband, four young boys and a Golden Retriever that likes to boss her around. When she’s not writing, you can find her at her day job, shuttling her boys to and from soccer practices and games, listening to music, reading, or connecting with others on Facebook and Twitter.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ashlynmathewsauthor
Twitter: @ashlynmathews
Website: www.AshlynMathews.com