Sunday, November 30, 2014

BOOK BLITZ: "Doorway To Destiny" by Vanessa Finaughty & TC Southwell

With eight novels by TC Southwell and three novels and two anthologies by Vanessa Finaughty, this box set offers fantasy and sci-fi lovers escapism that will keep you up long past your bedtime. Dive into fantastic worlds and meet fascinating characters whose trials and tribulations will enchant and inspire. Discover how a vengeful assassin reshapes the fate of three kingdoms and share in a quest to discover the origins of mankind, then follow the tale of a young queen's fight to be free with the aid of a combat cyborg. Two short story anthologies spice up the fare with dragons, sorcerers and magic galore, and a child of another god strives to save his world from mankind's ravages. When a mortal dark god treads a tragic path as he rises to destroy the Overworld, a brave young girl risks her life to try to change his savage ways. Each hero and heroine takes a definitive step through a doorway to destiny as he or she seeks to right wrongs and save worlds.

Purchase Doorway To Destiny via:

Smashwords
iBooks
Barnes And Noble
Goodreads

Extract from Legends of Origin, Book 1: Sanctuary for the Devil by Vanessa Finaughty

Thirty-three-year-old Liam MacAskill hurried across the desert sand, imposing mountain peaks at his back, their size dwindling as he progressed. He did his best to ignore the howling wind ripping at his clothes and whipping his dark hair into his face, often stinging his eyes and blinding him. He ignored the relentless rain and hailstones, pelting his face and adding to the bruises and gashes he knew must cover him from head to toe. He also paid no heed to the throbbing in his wounded leg, knowing that to acknowledge its existence would empower it to control him. How pathetic it would be to escape Sah’s wrath only to be ended by a minor wound such as the one his captors had given him during his escape.
It was a flesh wound, really. Nothing more. Just the tip of a guard’s sword had slashed Liam’s left thigh, and it hadn’t hindered his escape in the least. In fact, the flash of pain he’d felt as the wound had been inflicted had made new adrenaline course through him, enabling him to overpower three guards – all at least twice his size, and armed with Earth technology, too. Making his way over the mountain range bordering the enemy palace was what had made the wound a problem.
Gensshei Mountains were usually easy to traverse, he’d been told – if you had a horse to carry you along the winding pathways for the three days it took to reach the other side. Liam had been forced to climb its towering peaks, causing his injured leg to go into spasm so many times he’d lost count, albeit saving him two days’ journey. The soldiers would have pursued on horseback along the mountains’ main path, splitting up to explore the narrower, lesser-used paths. He doubted they would have expected him to attempt the climb – or survive it.
A soft chuckle escaped Liam, and he choked it back, increasing his pace and lowering his head further to protect his face from the hail, although his neck ached from being in that position for almost twenty-four hours. He had not come this far to give himself away with insane, foolish laughter. Liam had nothing to laugh about, and he could be wrong – his enemies could, right at that moment, be climbing the mountains towards him. His leg throbbed more the closer he got to his destination.
The end of the desert came into sight.
Waves thundered just over the sand dunes ahead.
He was almost there. Almost safe. Just over the dunes, a short way down the beach, was the sanctuary he sought.
The sky darkened rapidly now as night came, and Liam found a new surge of energy as lightning fragmented the sky and a sharp thunderclap vibrated the ground. Everything forgotten but the need to reach the dunes, he drew his royal blue coat tighter around him, crossed his arms to keep it in place, then increased his pace to a jog, his bones protesting every movement. He had a bad feeling, and, the sooner he reached safety, the sooner it would go away. He hoped.

<><><>

Liam stood atop the dune, panting and staring down at the tableau before him in dismay. The beach below, which should have been soft, white sand, was covered in what looked like broken glass. Dark coldness crept into his heart, spreading its tendrils to chill him further. He looked down at his bare feet, already bleeding from the climb and walk through the desert’s sand. This was bad.
Gathering his senses, Liam made his way down the dune, slipping and sliding a few times. He bent to examine the shimmering sand, and frowned. It was glass. Shattered glass, covering his only route to safety. Safety, about a kilometre down the beach, where Gensshei Mountains wrapped around to meet the ocean. The dunes on either side were too steep for him to climb in his current condition, making this glittering carpet his only route. Liam cursed under his breath. How could this be? Despair grasped his mind as he straightened to gaze around in panic-induced madness.
The shattered pieces were all clear glass and all clean looking, with no indication of where they had come from. Liam’s frown deepened as he pondered his predicament. If he turned back now, he was a guaranteed dead man. He would never make it over the peaks a second time, and would walk straight into Sah’s men if he turned back to go along the path. Those being his only two options, Liam sucked in a deep breath, and, the decision not quite taken form yet, dashed onto the glass fragments in the direction of Tridor Monastery… where he could claim sanctuary under this land’s laws of God.
Liam barely noticed as sand dunes melted into scattered rocks, then solid rock face. His injured leg threatened to cave in, but he sprinted forward, focussed on speed and his destination. Being able to focus so single-mindedly was one of the many benefits he’d gained from daily meditation for the last three years – a requirement at the dojo where he had trained in Ki Aikido and Ninjitsu, amongst other martial arts. He’d hated it at first, but it had been a condition of employment at the private investigation company he had worked for up until recently… Up until he’d met Joshua.
The hail stopped abruptly, and, along with it, the hail and wind, almost as if nature held its breath to see if he’d make it, and his surprise slowed him for a moment, but he rectified that quickly. His coat came loose as he came around the beach’s curve, where a small natural harbour blocked the way forward. The wind came back with a vengeance and whipped his coat up into his face, causing him to stumble. Just then, his leg gave in and he collapsed on the sand, his lungs on fire and his heart beating wildly. He couldn’t feel his feet, which he figured was probably for the best.
Liam pulled himself onto his hands and knees. He glanced at the harbour’s enormous waves in front of him. Lightning struck in the distance. On the harbour’s far shore, something glistened as it snaked inland – a river? He blinked and it was gone. He looked to his right. The narrow stretch of sand that extended towards his right, leading back towards the mountains – what would be considered part of the ‘holy land’ the monastery stood on – was free of glass. Odd. A frown creased his brow again. When he tried to stand, Liam realised that his feet would take no more punishment. He caught a glimpse of one as he collapsed again; he couldn’t see his flesh for blood. He decided not to look at them again.
With a shuddering breath, Liam began to crawl towards the monastery. Walking along the stretch of sand bordering the harbour and up the short, gradually inclining pathway that led up the mountain towards the monastery would have taken a mere few minutes. Crawling along it, however, and in the middle of a strange mixed-weather storm, was another story. Liam grimaced as he dragged his feet along the sand. He was injuring himself further, but he didn’t care. The only thing he cared about was reaching the monastery. Everything would be okay then. The healers would heal him with their magic when he got there. Every time he moved forward, he was convinced he could go no further. Eventually, his knees gave in on him, too, and he heaved himself onwards with his elbows, determined to reach safety.
Liam finally reached the bottom of the mountain pathway. Without pause, he dragged himself along it. If he stopped, however briefly, he wouldn’t find the strength to continue. He knew this without a doubt. After what felt like days of torture, worse, even, than that he had endured at Sah’s hands, the monastery came into view, partly hidden by hanging tree branches and bushes. Built mostly into the mountain, the stone-walled monastery rose three storeys, with a round two-storey tower, the top floor windowless, extending from the roof in the centre.
Tears of relief streamed down Liam’s cheeks to mingle with rain water as he dragged himself towards the monastery at a faster pace, all pain forgotten. If he could just reach the front steps, he would be able to claim sanctuary. He collapsed just a few paces from the steps, his aching arms unable to take any more punishment. Just as the bitterness of failure was about to consume him, a voice called out nearby, “Look! Over there!”
Without warning, the wind picked up, tearing at Liam’s clothes as if trying to claim him for itself. Seconds later, gentle hands turned him onto his back, and he looked into the concerned blue eyes of a blond monk.
“He’s hurt! Call the healer!”
A second voice shouted something back that Liam couldn’t hear above the howling wind. He reached up, grabbed the monk’s collar and rasped, “Sanctuary. I claim sanctuary.”
Then he fell back and passed out.

<><><>

The blond monk, Arthean, looked down at the stranger, perplexed. From whom did he claim sanctuary? He was the second stranger in the last week to claim sanctuary here, and the first had fallen into a coma before they could question him. Before that, the last time anyone had claimed sanctuary at Tridor Monastery had been at least thirteen years ago, at which time it had done the unfortunate soul no good, as the Lord of the Land at that time had been a godless man named Kyain who had no respect for the law and had invaded the premises to claim his prize. Since sanctuary had meant nothing under Kyain’s rule, nobody had attempted to claim it after that, and, after the war that had seen the fall of Kyain and the rise of Sah, nobody had needed sanctuary. Sah ruled fairly, and none had ever opposed his rule.
So from what, then, did this stranger claim sanctuary? Arthean shivered violently and glanced back down the pathway to his left, then towards the harbour below. Both were empty. He stared down at the man again; his expensive-looking coat was torn so badly that it was now worth no more than rags, his right trouser leg was blood stained, wet sand crusted his eyes, his face was covered in red, rapidly swelling lumps – presumably gifts from the hailstones earlier – and his feet were caked in so much blood and sand that it was difficult to see the full extent of his injuries. Whatever he claimed sanctuary from, it was understandable.
Certhon – Tridor’s healer – arrived with two monks and placed the stranger on a stretcher to carry him inside. Arthean followed, sensing an omen in the second stranger’s arrival, as he had with the first. An omen more powerful than any he’d been sent in all of his thirty-five years. Whether it was good or bad was yet to be seen.

INTERVIEW WITH VANESSA FINAUGHTY:

1. What made you decide to put together a boxed set featuring both your work?

My co-author was invited to participate in a month-long iBooks promo for multi-author box sets, and she asked me if I would like to include my books. I obviously jumped at the chance – opportunities like that don’t come along often.

2. Can you tell the readers a little about what stories/novels you included in the set?

The first three books in my sci-fi fantasy adventure series, Legends of Origin, are included – the series revolves around the MC’s need to know mankind’s origins and his greater purpose in life. Also included are my two fantasy short story collections, Dragon Kin and other fantasy stories and Sorcery & Subterfuge – there’s a nice mix of light-hearted stories and more series ones, all of them including popular fantasy elements like dragons, magic and elves, and many introducing readers to new fantasy beings and creatures.

3. What is it about the mythological/fantasy world that intrigues you so much?

In fantasy worlds, the good guys almost always win in the end. That isn’t true for real life.

4. What inspires your writing?

Real events have inspired some of my short stories, but, when it comes to my fantasy stories and novels, each story usually starts with a vivid scene in my mind, and the rest just pops into my head as I write.

5. Use three words to entice readers into buying the boxed set.

Original fantasy adventure.

About Vanessa Finaughty:

Vanessa Finaughty is an author of many genres who now focuses on fantasy and science fiction. She’s published 15 books, of which 6 are fantasy. Vanessa grew up in Cape Town, South Africa, and still lives there with her husband of fifteen years, her baby daughter and plenty of furry, four-legged ‘children’.
Vanessa has always been passionate about books, and knew from a young age that she wanted to write them one day. She loves animals, coffee and the smell of wet grass, and hates liars, sweltering weather and long queues. Her interests include reading, photography, the supernatural, mythology, aliens and outer space, ancient history, life’s mysteries and martial arts, of which she has five years’ experience.

Find Vanessa Finaughty online via:

Official site
Blog
Twitter
Facebook

INTERVIEW WITH TC SOUTHWELL:

1. What made you decide to put together a boxed set featuring both your work?

My distributer, Smashwords.com, invited me to participate in Apple iBookstore’s major month-long promotion of multi-author box sets. As my friend and an up and coming indie fantasy/sci-fi author whose work I enjoy, Vanessa was obviously my choice of partner.

2. Can you tell the readers a little about what stories/novels you included in the set?

The box set has four of my series starters and the second books in those series, which are The Queen’s Blade, a six-book fantasy series about a vengeful assassin who changes the fate of three kingdoms, The Cyber Chronicles, a nine-book science-fiction/fantasy series about a damaged cyborg’s struggle to be free, The Broken World, a four-book fantasy series about an alien world’s rebellion against mankind’s ravages, and Demon Lord, an eight-book fantasy series about a mortal god’s struggle to use his dark power to do good.

3. What is it about the mythological/fantasy world that intrigues you so much?

It’s the ultimate escapism, as it transports its readers to alien worlds where they have exciting adventures with fascinating heroes and heroines who have magic powers or mind-boggling abilities.

4. What inspires your writing?

I’m a channeller, so the stories come to me complete, like a film in my head, and I write what I see, feel and hear. I have no control over the path the tales take or what my heroes and heroines do, which makes writing a grand adventure.

5. Use three words to entice readers into buying the boxed set.

Romantic fantasy adventures.

About TC Southwell:

T. C. Southwell was born in Sri Lanka and moved to the Seychelles when she was a baby. She spent her formative years exploring the islands – mostly alone. Naturally, her imagination flourished and she developed a keen love of other worlds. The family travelled through Europe and Africa and, after the death of her father, settled in South Africa.
T. C. Southwell has written over thirty fantasy and science fiction novels, as well as five screenplays. Her hobbies include motorcycling, horse riding and art, and she is now a full-time writer.

Find TC Southwell online via:

Official site
Blog
Twitter
Facebook

RELEASE DAY & BOOK REVIEW: "Third Position (Dirty Dancing #3)" by Melody Grace

Purchase Third Position NOW on Amazon!

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 14pt;" style="font-size: 14pt;">Purchase&nbsp;on iBooks:&nbsp;<a data-mce-href="http://bit.ly/11GuSLx" href="http://bit.ly/11GuSLx">http://bit.ly/11GuSLx</a></span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">He taught me a dance beyond passion. He showed me the pleasure my body was made to create.</span><br /><span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">Now I have to choose.</span><br /><span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">Raphael or my future?&nbsp;</span><br /><span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">My passion or my one true love?&nbsp;</span><br /><span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">There’s no hiding from the truth any longer.</span><br /><span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">Everything changes tonight.</span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">*The third and final part of the sexy, seductive romance serial*</span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 14pt;" style="font-size: 14pt;">Haven't started the series yet? &nbsp;First Position is available for FREE!</span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 14pt;" style="font-size: 14pt;">Free&nbsp;on Amazon:<a data-mce-href="http://amzn.to/1qpNm8q" href="http://amzn.to/1qpNm8q">&nbsp;http://amzn.to/1qpNm8q</a></span></div>

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<span class="s1" data-mce-style="font-size: 14pt;" style="font-size: 14pt;">Free on Smashwords:&nbsp;<a data-mce-href="https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/482831" href="https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/482831"><span class="s2">https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/482831</span></a></span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">A man dances the same way he fucks. His stamina, his rhythm, the slow grind of his hips.</span></div>

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<span style="font-size: 12pt;">Some people are born to it, others learn through years of careful study.</span></div>

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<span style="font-size: 12pt;">And dancers? We do it best of all.</span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">The moment I saw her, I knew. Her innocence is intoxicating. My lust is fierce. Primal. To watch her dance is to know the torment of true temptation.</span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">She will be mine.</span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">THE DIRTY DANCING SERIES RELEASE DATES:</span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">FIRST POSITION -- 11/5</span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">SECOND POSITION -- 11/12</span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">THIRD POSITION -- 12/1</span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 14pt;" style="font-size: 14pt;"><strong>About Melody Grace&nbsp;</strong></span></div>

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<span data-mce-style="font-family: Georgia; color: black;" style="color: black; font-family: Georgia;">Melody Grace is the New York Times bestselling author of the Beachwood Bay series. A small-town girl turned SoCal beach lover, after spending her life with her nose in a book, she decided it was time she wrote one herself. She loves steamy romance novels, happily-ever-afters, and lusting after fictional menfolk. She is author of USA Today &amp; international bestselling Beachwood Bay series.</span></div>

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<strong><a data-mce-href="http://melodygracebooks.blogspot.com/" href="http://melodygracebooks.blogspot.com/">Website&nbsp;</a>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;<a data-mce-href="https://www.facebook.com/melodygracebooks" href="https://www.facebook.com/melodygracebooks">Facebook</a>&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;<a data-mce-href="https://twitter.com/Melody_Grace_" href="https://twitter.com/Melody_Grace_">Twitter&nbsp;</a></strong></div>

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MY REVIEW:

In the final installment of Melody Grace's Dirty Dancing novella trilogy, Third Position, we find out just what Annalise loves more: ballet or Raphael.
With the production of Swan Lake a week away, and Raphael's audition even nearer, Annalise might not be able to do it all, but with her mother in town, things are even more difficult.
She has to choose, and the heartbreaking events in Third Position are very influential.

Third Position is not the tale of two lovers, nor is it the story of a ballerina. It's more than that. In its short span, we are given a lesson in love and loyalty, in heartbreak and determination. We experience loss, glory, betrayal and indecision through Annalise's eyes.
This is romantic, deep, and truly beautiful. Annalise is a heroine to root for. When she cries, we cry. We deal with her overbearing mother alongside her, dance with her and love with her. I'm sad that this is over now. It's a lovely series I'll be rereading again!

5/5--excellent!

BOOK SPOTLIGHT: "A League of Her Own" by Karen Rock

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<i><b>He was attractive, talented…and way off limits.&nbsp;</b></i><br />
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Heather Gadway may have been a world-class college pitcher and a top university coach, but she's a rank amateur when it comes to managing the Falcons, her father's struggling minor league team. And when it comes to managing her aggravating attraction to Garrett Wolf, their talented new pitcher. It's going to be difficult enough to make it as the first female manager in the league and prove to her overly critical father she's worthy. No distractions. No missteps. And certainly no romances with players. Everything stands between them—including their troubled pasts—even as Heather's world falls apart and Garrett's the one who's there to catch her…<br />
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“What else do you want?” The question came from a part of her she didn’t recognize. Asking a man like Garrett a flirtatious question was playing with fire.<br />
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Garrett groaned, longing sharpening his features. “You.”<br />
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Without waiting for her response, his lips captured hers. She knew she should push him away, but instead her head fell back, her pulse leaping in her throat. The pressure was exquisite as he nibbled and explored. Soft. Warm. Gentle. His lips moved slowly, gradually exerting more pressure.<br />
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This felt incredible. Better than the last time. She had to stop this, but need seized her, shoving aside her good intentions.<br />
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Her body hummed and a fuzzy sensation filled her head, making it hard to focus on anything but the feel of him, the evergreen scent of the forest and his aftershave heightening her senses.<br />
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His hands gripped her waist as she swayed against him, holding her as his mouth sampled her lower lip, then put pressure on the top. Nerves sent small shock waves through her chest, and her hand rose to stroke the back of his neck, making him tremble against her.<br />
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Suddenly his kiss intensified, growing fierce and demanding. His lips moved fast against hers, their tongues tangling, causing warmth to explode in her body, melting every piece of her.<br />
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She moaned and Garrett’s arms tightened, bringing her closer still. Her lips maneuvered against his in response, loving his sweet taste. Garrett shuddered, curling his fist into her hair with a groan. She loved how her touch affected him, how it affected her.<br />
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At last his lips let her go, and he looked down at her tenderly, pleasure in his eyes, his chest rising and falling hard.<br />
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“I wasn’t getting involved with anyone. Planned to focus only on baseball,” he said when his breath came easier. “But I can’t stay away from you. You follow me, even in my sleep. Your eyes.” He kissed each lid. “Your smile.” He pressed his lips to each corner. “These freckles.” His warm mouth brushed her cheeks.<br />
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Her chest expanded, taking in his beautiful words. This incredible moment. And then it hit her, reality a cold shower.<br />
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She opened her eyes and scooted away. “Garrett. I don’t know.”<br />
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His eyes moved out over the falls, tracking the sprays of water as they hit the jutting rocks and tumbled to earth. “You don’t trust me.”<br />
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Her mouth opened and closed. He was right. While he touched a chord inside that’d never sounded for anyone else, she still couldn’t put her heart in harm’s way again. And she knew without a doubt that if Garrett let her down, he’d devastate her as much as her mother had. Even more. She’d loved and lost too many times to try again, especially with her father gone so recently.<br />
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“I’m sorry,” she said inadequately as he stood and helped her to her feet.<br />
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His blank expression gave little away. She wondered if, deep down, a part of him was relieved they weren’t taking things further. He’d said he hadn’t wanted distractions. And now she wouldn’t be one.<br />
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“I can’t make you believe in me, Heather.” His voice was steady and strong. “I need someone who’ll give me a chance to earn her trust.”<br />
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Karen Rock is an award-winning YA and adult contemporary author. She holds a master’s degree in English and worked as an ELA instructor before becoming a full-time author. &nbsp;With her co-author, Joanne Rock, she’s penned the CAMP BOYFRIEND series with Spencer Hill Press under the pseudonym J.K. Rock. She also writes contemporary romance for Harlequin Enterprises. Her wholesome romance, Heartwarming novels have won the 2014 Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence and the 2014 Golden Quill Contest. When she's not writing, Karen loves scouring estate sales for vintage books, cooking her grandmother's family recipes and hiking. She lives in the Adirondack Mountain region with her husband, daughter, and two Cavalier King cocker spaniels who have yet to understand the concept of "fetch" though they know a lot about love. To find out about her upcoming releases, appearance and latest news, visit&nbsp;<a href="http://www.karenrock.com/">http://www.karenrock.com</a>&nbsp;or follow her on Facebook at&nbsp;<a href="http://www.facebook.com/karenrockwrites">http://www.facebook.com/karenrockwrites</a>&nbsp;or Twitter at&nbsp;<a href="http://www.twitter.com/karenrock5">http://www.twitter.com/karenrock5</a>!<br />
She’d love to connect with you!<br />
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Saturday, November 29, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: "The Hungry #6: The Rule of Three" by Harry Shannon & Steven W. Booth

The zombies must be stopped… 
Sheriff Penny Miller has come too far and lost too many friends to quit now. She and her companions have made it safely to Mountain Home, Idaho, the operation center of the three-person Enhanced Bioweapons Select Committee that controls the nation’s response to the zombie outbreak. Miller knows they are still funding the research that started the zombie apocalypse. 
And Miller didn’t come to the home of the zombies to attend a church social. 
When Sheriff Miller stumbles across a homegrown militia whose leader shares her hatred of the Select Committee, she sees the opportunity she’s been waiting for. Together with Major McDivitt and his team, Sheriff Miller sets out to destroy the three committee members who have the most to gain from the spread of the zombie virus. One last mission should finish the job. 
…Unless they know she’s coming.

Talk about a whirlwind! The Hungry series has taken us across America while zombies kill everything that moves, and one woman has stood tall against them and their makers, Penny Miller. Unconcerned with her hair and focused on killing the undead, she's the ideal woman and best lead out there.
Of course, Scratch, the biker, is still by her side, somehow having survived the journey along with his paramour, when so many others have died.
This is their last stand, and you know it when you open this book, because the sense of urgency is palpable. You're rushing along with them to save whatever remains of mankind and take down the ones who created the zombies.
You won't want to tear your eyes from the pages. If you're reading this on an ereader, make sure your batteries are charged. The zombies wait for no man or power source!

5/5--a nearly perfect ending!

Purchase The Hungry 6 via:

Amazon

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Ryan McSwain

1. When/why did you decide to become a writer?

I’ve always loved writing—I was the weird kid that got excited about school writing assignments. A good thing, too, because my papers usually saved my grades from my test scores. It just took time to figure out how to write fiction that was worth sharing.

2. What authors inspired you when you were younger? What books do you enjoy reading today?

As a young kid, I read non-stop. I loved Baum’s Oz series, the Alice books, Tolkien, and that classic, Ralph Fozbek and the Amazing Black Hole Patrol. And comic books, always comic books. When I got a little older, I was all about Ray Bradbury, Stephen King, J.D. Salinger, Spider Robinson, Philip K. Dick, and H.P. Lovecraft. And comics by folks like Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman, Grant Morrison, and Warren Ellis.
Right now, I’m mostly doing research for my next book. But I’m getting into the works of Haruki Murakami and Gabriel García Márquez, and I just finished The Third Policeman by Flann O'Brien (Brian O'Nolan). One of my favorites is the underrated Lucky Wander Boy by D.B. Weiss.

3. What was the inspiration behind your novel Monsters All The Way Down?

The premise bounced around in my head for about ten years, and it was reading too much Philip K. Dick that I finally figured out how to make it work. It started as my take on a PKD paranoia thriller set in modern times, and the Lovecraftian elements crept in on their own. Musically, I found a lot of inspiration in The Mountain Goats’ Heretic Pride album. The road trip element of the book definitely comes from my love of Supernatural.

4. What would you do in Brennan's predicament?

Get killed around chapter four! Seriously, though, Brennan is miles away from being an author surrogate, but much of what he does in his early investigation comes from how I would try and figure things out. A big difference between Brennan and me is that I have a support system of friends and family. I like to think I have people I could call if I really got into trouble.

5. You say you're a stay at home dad and former youth pastor. How have those things effected your work, if they have effected it all?

Being a youth pastor was very fulfilling, but it was emotionally exhausting and left me drained creatively. I thought being a stay-at-home dad would give me time to write, and it did—at first. Once my son stopped napping most of the day, there wasn’t room for anything else. I had plenty of ideas, but no time to write the stories. Monsters All the Way Down was written and revised in about three years of staying up too late. I realized I couldn’t be a good dad without sleep, so now I do most of my writing in marathon stints on Sundays.
I’ve blogged about the challenges of writing and being a stay-at-home parent, if anyone would like to check out my site.

6. Were any of the characters personalities or emotions taken from real life?

Some of the conflict in the book has its roots in the sibling rivalry I used to have with my younger brother. He’s a great guy, and amazingly talented, so it was strange to have him coming up behind me, able to do some of the things I did, only so much better.

7. What other genres would you like to try your hand at?

My next book is going to fall in the superhero novel category, although there’s a lot more to it than capes and punches. There’s a YA murder mystery I’ve been dying to get down on paper. There are quite a few sci-fi and literary fiction ideas to try out..

8. If you could successfully clone a human, who would you clone and why?

I have a couple of friends, Dustin and Jon, who are self-disciplined, intelligent, and focused. If I had an army of either one, I could take over the world in a fortnight. If you cloned me, you’d just have a roomful of folks pondering their existence and identity.

9. Was there any intended symbolism behind the fact that, out of all the clones who acted pretty much the same, Brennan was different?

(I’d rather not have this big a spoiler in the interview, if that’s all right. Could you rephrase the question or leave it out?). There’s some nature versus nurture going on there. It’s scary to think how much our heritage and upbringing are out of our control.

10. Would you like to see Monsters All The Way Down as a film? If yes, who do you want to have play your characters?

I would love to see it as a film—I could cameo as one of the decapitated heads. As for casting, I’d hate for my word of god to steal the opportunity for people to cast it themselves. But the only character I really had cast in my head was Benjamin Rosen, the guy in the ruffled tuxedo. I think a young Rufus Sewel (Dark City; Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) would be perfect for the part.

11. Where do you see yourself and your career in the next ten years?

I’d love to get to the point where I can put out a book a year, preferably one every six months. If getting my work out there leads to paying the bills, all the better.

12. What would you be doing if you weren't writing?

I’ll always have my safe, mature backup plan of becoming a magician.

13. Can you tell KSR what you're working on next?

Definitely! My next book is about comic books, obsession, and the nature of reality. It will be the second book in a very loose trilogy, so it shares themes, settings, and maybe a few characters with Monsters All the Way Down. It’s currently in revisions, and the plan is to launch a kickstarter in the spring to raise money for illustrators.

14 . What authors, dead or alive, would you like to collaborate with?

It kills me that Philip K. Dick never finished The Owl in Daylight, so I’d be happy to bring him coffee so he could give us some closure. And I would do just about anything to be the Royal Historian of Oz—does that count? 

15. Thank you for participating in the interview. Can you please leave the readers with three things that may surprise them about you?

Thank you for the opportunity—this has been great fun! As for three things, (1) I think it’s healthy to be offended at least once a day. (2) I cry at movies. (3) I used to ride a pretty mean unicycle.

Find Mr. McSwain online via 

Author Website: http://www.ryanmcswain.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ryanmcswain

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ryanmcswainwrites

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4878662.Ryan_McSwain



Friday, November 28, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: "Monsters All The Way Down" by Ryan McSwain

What would you do if you were waned for murders you didn't commit and the suspect sketch looked just like you? Worse still, you knew all the victims!
For Brennan Wade, when that happens, he goes on the hunt for the man framing him but what he finds just might push him over the edge...

Monsters All The Way Down by Ryan McSwain (Pithos Publishing) shocked me. I have read a lot of thrillers and watched a lot of crime shows/movies. Rarely does a suspect turn out like this, which is why I'd classify this as sci-fi as well as a thriller.
I can't review this as thoroughly as I do others because I can't give too many spoilers. This is a book you HAVE to read for yourself!
I can't say the characters are great, but there is great development of them all and the narration is wonderful. Joan, Brennan and even Tom are all unique, with individual personalities and a very strange story. At some points, I'd even go so far as to call it twisted.
You've never read anything like this!

5/5--wonderful!

Purchase Monsters All The Way Down via:

Amazon

Goodreads

HOLIDAY SALE: Editing/Proofreading Services

From today, Black Friday, through this Cyber Monday (11/28-12/1) I am offering a discount on my editing and proofreading services.

NOVELS (over 20k words): only $0.50 per word (originally $0.75 per word)

SHORT STORIES (10k words or less): $1.00 per page (originally $1.50 per page)

NOVELLAS (10k-20k words): $1.25 per page (originally $1.75 per page)

Please contact me at notok02@hotmail.com , attach a .doc or .docx file of your manuscript, give me details of what exactly you need me to do (IE: only spellchecking, or complete editing of grammar, repetition, etc.), and give me a time frame to work with. I do charge more if you need the work back in less than three weeks.
Please also make sure that you mention this ad in your email so that I can give you the holiday discount!

I can guarantee you professional service, with nearly obsessive attention to detail and proper spelling/grammar. Bad editing has been a common complaint to me from authors, so I decided that I would do something about that and offer services at competitive prices and give the authors guarantees of quality and payment plans as well for those who can't afford to pay one lump sum.

I'm looking forward to working with all of you!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

EVENT PROMOTION: Cyber Monday Lifetime Pass From Long Beach Comic Expo!

Long Beach, CA (November 26, 2014) - In advance of Cyber Monday, Long Beach Comic Expo will make available 50 Lifetime Passes which will grant fans access to the annual event. The passes are available at www.longbeachcomiccon.com for $249.99 through December 31st, 2014. After that date, the a lifetime pass will cost $349.99.

Next year’s Long Beach Comics Expo will be held February 28, 2015 & March 1, 2015 at Long Beach Convention Center. Announced guests include legendary writer Chris Claremont (UNCANNY X-MEN), acclaimed comic book writer Brian Wood (THE MASSIVE; DMZ), fan favorite animation writer and producer Greg Weisman (STAR WARS REBELS; YOUNG JUSTICE) and Cosplay favorites LeeAnna Vamp and Nicole Marie Jean.

“The Lifetime Passes are a great gift and a wonderful idea for the comic book and cosplay fans in your life,” said Martha Donato, Executive Director of Long Beach Comic Con & Expo. “For the cost of a season pass at a resort, you can give a lifetime experience of comics.”

Follow Long Beach Comic Expo on Facebook and Twitter for the latest news and information.

About Long Beach Comic Expo:

Long Beach Comic Expo is an annual event held at the Long Beach Convention Center that celebrates comic books and pop culture and showcases the exceptional works of talented writers, artists, illustrators and creators of all types of pop culture. At Long Beach Comic Expo, you’ll find exhibitors promoting and selling all types of related products, as well as entertaining and educational programs for all ages, guest signings and meet & greet sessions with celebrities. Long Beach Comic Expo is a MAD Event Management, LLC production. To learn more and purchase tickets, please visit www.longbeachcomicexpo.com . 

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Suanne Laqueur

1. When/why did you decide to become a writer?

I’ve always written, since I was a little girl. I don’t think you choose these things—they choose you. The decision to finally DO something with my writing was conscious, though. And very immediate. I had been blogging for some time on eatsreadsthinks.com. My social media network was growing bigger and bigger. I was getting more and more comfortable showing people the literary side of myself. I was sharing more and more of my writing. People kept saying I needed to get it in front of a wider audience and I brushed it off. But around this time last year, a sudden determination filled me. I’m doing this. What am I waiting for? What’s the worst that could happen?  Of course the doubts come in on the flank: what if no one likes it?  To which I answered, what if they do like it?

2. What authors inspired you when you were younger? What books do you enjoy reading today?

If I had to narrow it down to two influential authors, I would say Laurie Colwin and Rumer Godden. When I read Godden’s In This House of Brede, I was amazed at how she was able to create well over two dozen characters and make each one unique and vibrant and alive. And I loved her attention to detail when it came to settings and surroundings. Colwin’s Family Happiness blew me away with its thoughtfulness and depth of emotion regarding a sort of taboo subject—this very ordinary woman found herself having a love affair and struggling with emotions she didn’t have names for. I found myself thinking, “I want to write this way. Make ordinary people extraordinary. Take extraordinary circumstances and show how ordinary and universal they really are.”

3. What was the inspiration behind your novel The Man I Love?

The characters were in my head for a good two decades. But they were like literary paper dolls. I just played with them, writing little vignettes. Fan fiction.
Then someone from my past came back into my life, twenty years after we had gone through a terrible experience and then completely disconnected afterward. I was completely unprepared for the emotional whirlwind that came with resolving this event from my youth. I went into a bad depression and I didn’t understand what was happening to me. Working it out in therapy, I came to realize that disconnecting from pain doesn’t end it. Maybe it hides but it’s never gone. It’s there waiting for you when you tear open that boarded-up door. Often with more power than it had before. You have to feel it—even twenty years later—or it will never leave you.
This was the story I wanted to write. Needed to write. Both to channel it away from me in a positive way, but also because I suspected this kind of experience is universal and I wanted to connect with others through it. I wanted to write a story about the effect of trauma. And not limited to trauma from a shooting or an accident or war—I wanted to write about emotional trauma. Abandonment. Loss. Heartbreak. Particularly emotional trauma that goes unresolved. Grief that’s left un-grieved. And that’s where one of the taglines for the novel comes from: “You never got over her. You just left.”

4. Will we ever see these characters again?

Absolutely. I’m currently working on a companion novella to The Man I Love which will tell Daisy Bianco’s side of the story.

5. Why ballet?

My mother was a ballet teacher and she started her studio in the basement of my house. As a very young child I would sit on the stairs and watch until I was old enough to participate and then dance quickly became my life. After I graduated high school, I attended Alfred University in upstate New York and earned a double degree in theater and dance. I knew I didn’t have the chops to make it as a professional performer but I slowly realized I had a gift for choreography and teaching. I taught for two years at the State University of New York at Fredonia, then came home to teach at my mother’s dance studio until she retired. I love the art of dance, and I love ballet because it’s the foundation. If your ballet technique is good, you can dance anything.

6. Were any of the characters personalities or emotions taken from real life?

Certainly the theater and dance aspects are taken from real life. And it’s emotionally autobiographical based on my own experiences with anxiety, depression and recovery. The line “Live the truth,” came to me when I was in a very dark time. Like this one ray of sunlight piercing through heavy clouds, I suddenly thought, “Live the truth of who you are and what you feel.” It was instantly calming. I wrote it down and pinned it up by my desk, knowing it was going to be something important but I didn’t know what yet.

7. What other genres would you like to try your hand at?

I’m working on a bit of historical fiction. A story that spans generations of one family through both World Wars. The amount of research required is daunting, I’m a little nervous about it but I think I can do it.

8. Why did you choose a school shooting, since it's such a sensitive topic?

I think it chose me. I needed a traumatic event that would drive Daisy and Erik apart. Something that would send them into a spiral and eventually push Daisy to do what she did.
One day I came across a YouTube video of Viviana Durante and Robert LaFosse. In it they are dancing the pas de deux “The Man I Love” from George Balanchine’s ballet Who Cares? Robert is blond and handsome and nothing like I picture Will Kaeger looking. However, Viviana is petite and dark-haired and just an exquisite dancer. I watched her in this video and she seemed to embody Daisy right away. And certainly the chemistry she has with Robert evokes the relationship Daisy has with her partner Will.
Anyway, I was watching the video and I came to the part where Viviana does this very difficult lift on Robert’s shoulder. And you can see, right around the 4:04 mark, that she overshoots the jump and she teeters on his shoulder. It’s this precarious three seconds where you can see Robert discreetly adjusting his weight and getting her back on balance. And something just popped in my head. I thought, “something happens here.” I don’t remember exactly when that thought coalesced into “she gets shot” but it did and I had my story. Sadly, instances of gun violence have become prevalent in our society today, with much focus on the assailants and their motives. But I’ve taken a more emotional slant on the issue by focusing on the victims and their connections to each other before and after the shooting.

9. What do you most want readers to take from the novel?

A friend of mine who is a psychiatrist just finished The Man I Love. She said one thing she often tells patients is that after a trauma, you have to decide if the event is going to be a dot on the timeline of your life, or if it’s going to define your entire life. You can’t bury your pain—it thrives in dirt. You have to feel it. You have to embrace going into the black because it’s the only way to come out the other side. But you can be in the black and still be a functioning human being. It’s not an either-or situation.
Human forgiveness works much the same way. People make mistakes. The ones we love often hurt us. Is the mistake something you can incorporate into the architecture of your love affair? Or does it define the entire relationship, in which case you will never be able to move on and grow.

10. Would you like to see The Man I Love as a movie? If yes, who do you want to play your characters?

This is tricky because everyone has their own image of the characters in their head. Sometimes I think Justin Timberlake would make a great Erik. And lately I’m following the rising star of ballerina Misty Copeland: her body and technique, the way she dances and looks and carries herself is totally Daisy to me.

11. Where do you see yourself and your career in the next ten years?

Doing this. Writing, blogging, creating, sharing. Enjoying a following and doing what I love.

12. What would you be doing if you weren't writing?

I’d love to have a little farm-to-market stand in the country.

13. Can you tell KSR what you're working on next?

I anticipate publishing my novella Give Me Your Answer True in January. And then I have an idea for a prequel which will tell the story of Erik’s family. Particularly his absent father.

14. Thank you for participating in the interview. Can you please leave the readers with three things that may surprise them about you?

I worked three weeks as a Verizon field technician which allowed me to finally add “pole dancer” to my resume.
I once rode in an elevator with Baryshnikov. I’m still recovering.
I love bed. Bed is the best place to read and if I could write comfortably in bed, I would.

Find Ms. Laqueur online via:

Book Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wq8WLkEzYwY
Website: www.suannelaqueur.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/suannelaqueur
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8317803.Suanne_Laqueur?
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Suanne-Laqueur/e/B00L2C9ML8/
Twitter: @suannelqr
Google+: https://plus.google.com/+SuanneLaqueur/posts
Email: swainblqr@gmail.com

RELEASE DAY BLITZ: "Interception" by Morgan Black

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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">Lena is alone. After having three boys fight for her heart she has royally screwed it all up and is left broken and lost.</span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">Now there is competition. Lena knows what she wants, and she'll kill Harli to get it.</span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">Wedding bells are ringing and Lena won't go alone. She'll have a date. Her date.</span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">That b*tch is going down.</span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 14pt;" style="font-size: 14pt;">Excerpt</span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">"Get out of my face." I wanted to spit on her. I knew it would be gross, but I wanted to do that more than anything. Teach her a lesson.</span>&nbsp;</div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">She didn't move. "Why? Just so you can mess with Blake some more? You know some of us are a little tired of your shit Lena."</span>&nbsp;</div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">"Back up Harli. I only wanted to talk to Blake. Nothing else."</span>&nbsp;</div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">She rolled her eyes. "It starts with a conversation. Then it's always more."</span>&nbsp;</div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">I swirled the spit in my mouth and swallowed it. She was right. I did want more.</span></div>
<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">I sat on the sand crying, the black fabric swirling around me like my secrets once had. I thought the truth would set me free, instead it swam around me threatening to drown me with every breath.</span></blockquote>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 14pt;" style="font-size: 14pt;">Haven't started the Finnegan Brother series yet? &nbsp;Misconception is available for 99¢!</span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 14pt;" style="font-size: 14pt;">Purchase on Amazon:<a data-mce-href="http://amzn.to/1prgxgG" href="http://amzn.to/1prgxgG">&nbsp;http://amzn.to/1prgxgG</a></span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">The Finnegan brothers are bound to hurt any girl that gets between them. But that doesn't stop Lena. She loves pain with her pleasure. When things get too hot for her to handle, she does the only thing she can do to protect herself... she runs away.</span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">Three years later, Lena is back in town for her father's wedding. She prays she can avoid her past, hoping nobody remembers her parents’ messy divorce or how she disappeared. However, as soon as she arrives, she finds she can't run from her past anymore.</span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">There's no escaping the Finnegan brothers. Not this time.</span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 14pt;" style="font-size: 14pt;">About Morgan Black</span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;"><a data-mce-href="http://authormorganblack.wordpress.com/" href="http://authormorganblack.wordpress.com/">Website&nbsp;</a>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<a data-mce-href="https://www.facebook.com/pages/Morgan-Black-Erotic-Romance-Author/533330676677161" href="https://www.facebook.com/pages/Morgan-Black-Erotic-Romance-Author/533330676677161">Facebook&nbsp;</a>&nbsp;&nbsp;<a data-mce-href="https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6548903.Morgan_Black" href="https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6548903.Morgan_Black">Goodreads</a></span></div>
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<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">Morgan Black is a hair stylist by day and hottie writer by night. She walks her dogs in high heels and never leaves the house without red lipstick. She firmly believes in the power of Zen, and does Yoga freely in her backyard, in her favorite set of pumps.</span>&nbsp;<span data-mce-style="font-size: 12pt;" style="font-size: 12pt;">Morgan Black also writes hot vampire erom under M. Black.</span>&nbsp;&nbsp;</div>
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<br /><a data-mce-href="http://www.markmywordsbookpublicity.com" href="http://www.markmywordsbookpublicity.com/"><img alt="" class="aligncenter  wp-image-2315" data-mce-src="http://markmywordsbookpublicity.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/MWM-Logo1.jpg" height="143" src="http://markmywordsbookpublicity.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/MWM-Logo1.jpg" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" width="386" /></a></div>

Monday, November 24, 2014

COMIC BOOK REVIEW/PREVIEW: "San Hannibal #5" (out 12/17/14)

Writer/Artist: Dan Schkade
Letterer/Colorist: Jesse Snavlin
Cover: Dan Schkade/Jesse Snavlin
Editor: PJ Perez
Publisher: Pop Goes The Icon

Throughout the course of San Hannibal’s five issues, writer/artist Dan Schkade and colorist/letterer Jesse Snavlin have put their protagonist, hard-luck private detective Ira Avery, through the ringer: He’s been shot at, beaten up, bombed, drugged and nearly buried alive in his search for Loy. And in the final issue of the “neon-noir” mini-series, the truth behind her disappearance is finally revealed—and so is the true face of power in San Hannibal.
San Hannibal #5 will be available on Dec. 17 in comic book stores and via popgoestheicon.com for $2.99, as well as through digital platforms such as Comixology, DriveThruComics and ComicsPlus for just $0.99 cents. To find a comic store near you, call 1-800-COMIC-BOOK or visit comicshoplocator.com.

After many long months, readers of San Hannibal will finally get the answer to that infamous question: "What's the story, Savannah Loy?"
With murders, conspiracy, elections, sex rings and deep thoughts in hospital rooms, the final issue of San Hannibal ends with a LOT of bangs! I've never read a comic book so fast in my life!
You might not believe it when you read it.
Throughout the series, I've said that the colors and art tell just as much of the story as the writing, and in the final issue, we are given an array of colors to dazzle the eyes. The writing and art are simplistic, but Jesse Snavlin's colors are anything but! They are as bright and enjoyable as the many layers Dan Schkade wrote into this miniseries. I see big things ahead in both of their respective careers!
Like I've said before, I would still prefer more narration from Ira in the book, and I think that in this final issue, that would've done well in summing up the story, but don't get me wrong: the ending was excellent and I will be rereading this over again soon!
A great comic choice if you're new to the comic book fandom and don't think superheroes are your cup of tea. And if you like mysteries, you'll gobble this up. Finally, if you just like a great story and great art, please buy this miniseries. You won't regret it!

5/5--one if today's best in the industry!

BOOK REVIEW: "The Man I Love" by Suanne Laqueur

"You never got over her. You just left." 

As a college freshman, Erik Fiskare is drawn to the world of theater but prefers backstage to center stage. The moment he lays eyes on a beautiful, accomplished dancer named Daisy Bianco, his atoms rearrange themselves and he is drawn into a romance both youthfully passionate and maturely soulful. It is a love story seemingly without end. But when a disturbed friend brings a gun into the theater, the story is forever changed. Six lives are lost and Daisy is left seriously injured, her professional dreams shattered. 
Traumatized by the experience, the lovers spiral into depression and drug use until a shocking act of betrayal destroys their relationship. To survive, Erik must leave school and disconnect from all he loves. He buries his heartbreak and puts the past behind. Or so he believes. 
As he moves into adulthood, Erik comes to grips with his role in the shooting, and slowly heals the most wounded parts of his soul. But the unresolved grief for Daisy continues to shape his dreams at night. Once those dreams were haunted by blood and gunfire. Now they are haunted by the refrain of a Gershwin song and a single question: is leaving always the end of loving? 
The Man I Love explores themes of love and sexuality, trauma—physical and mental—and its long-lasting effects, the burden of unfinished business and the power of reconciliation. Through Erik’s experience we reflect on what it means to be a man, a son and a leader. A soul mate, a partner and a lover. What it means to live the truth of who you are and what you feel. What it means to fight for what you love. 

The Man I Love is one of the deepest, most beautiful novels I have read.
You've got love, hate, addiction, death abandonment, PTSD and so much more, all gently shoved into a story about a boy and a girl. You're not reading a book when you open The Man I Love, you're entering a whole different world, filled with these wonderful, realistic and beautiful characters.
This is more than a novel about a shooting, or about two lovers. It's about heart, it's about trust and it's also about dance. Ballet is the central point, how these characters meet and where most of them work. I've never been a huge ballet fan, but reading this gave me a whole new appreciation for the art form.
The supporting characters, Will, James, Eric and Keesja, amongst others, are so amazingly there, they make the story what it is as much as Erik and Daisy do.
Sexual orientation and how it was perceived in the late 80's/early 90's is also a big part of the book, as is Erik's acceptance of it. He goes from a boy who has a bit of a bad taste in his mouth about it to allowing Will and Keesja to slap his behind and make lewd jokes.
That's what, I think, is the biggest thing in The Man I Love: growth. Erik, Daisy and the others do a lot of growing during the decade this novel spans, and it's wonderful to watch in your mind.
This novel was excellently executed with a lot of care. Readers will know this and they will appreciate it so much more because of it.

5/5--a beautiful masterpiece!

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