Monday, January 20, 2020

ASYLUM from Perfectly Poison Anthologies

ASYLUM
Published: January 20, 2020 by Perfectly Poisoned
Anthologies
Historical Fiction

The year is 1890. The Barrow Haven Asylum is a private facility in rural England housing some of the country’s wealthiest insane. Some inmates are truly insane, some banished by family members, others perhaps feigning insanity and with questionable agendas.

Ten stories of shock and suspense brought to you by ten of your favorite authors.

~Buy ASYLUM:

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STORIES & AUTHORS
INTRODUCING LILY SNOW
Natalie-Nicole Bates

Doctor Jonathan Marsh is a professional success, but a personal failure. As lead physician at Barrow Haven Asylum, he is admired by many, but he resents the position was thrust upon him by his father and grandfather.

Desperate to strike out on his own, but burdened by family guilt, he remains at Barrow Haven year after year.

When a nameless mute woman arrives at the asylum, Jonathan fills himself being pulled in by the mysterious beauty. Suddenly, the doctor/patient relationship reverses itself. But who is the woman and what is her plan?

About Natalie-Nicole Bates
Natalie-Nicole Bates has worn all the hats in the publishing world – reader, reviewer, author, and now small publisher with Perfectly Poisoned Press. She has the ability to see the point of view of everyone involved with the love of books. With a taste for the darker side, Natalie-Nicole’s favorite genres are Dark Victorian, Steampunk, and Dark Paranormal. Her interests include collecting Victorian-era photographs, Frozen Charlotte Dolls (her latest batch was just delivered from a German excavation site after being buried underground since about 1860), and antique poison bottles. She loves exploring and photographing cemeteries – the older, the better!

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CONFESSION
Marie Sterling

Sarah Malone is sent to Barrow Haven Asylum for the murder of her husband, to live however long in privileged imprisonment. A series of patient deaths soon follows after her arrival, but surely that’s just coincidence. Isn’t it?

About Marie Sterling
Marie is a native Midwesterner who now resides in Florida. Her family and friends would probably describe her as sarcastic, but that’s not completely true. Sometimes she’s sleeping. Marie spent a good chunk of her life in the United States Army, several of those years working in Military Intelligence. She could tell you more but then she’d have to kill you. Marie is also a member of RomVets, a group of military women who have turned the sword to pen.

Asylum is the fourth anthology that Marie's writing has appeared in, and the third with Perfectly Poisoned Anthologies. She has stories in Grave Importance and Devious Ingénues (with PPA) and in Order Up: A Menu of Lesbian Romance and Erotica.

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THE HARLOT SPY ESCAPES
Terri A. Wilson

After years of dedication to the Queen, England turned its back on Charlotte Jane Abercromby. Now she is taking her secrets and returning the favor. Her life as a Harlot Spy provided a lifestyle among the most elite of aristocracy. After years of gathering secrets for the Crown, some that may affect the queen herself, Queen Victoria will not let her easily escape. Hidden away in Barrow Haven Asylum, Charlotte must do the unthinkable or lose her mind forever.

About Terri A. Wilson
Terri considers herself a professional liar. That's right, she tells stories for a living. She creates worlds and brings dreams to life. She writes paranormal romance and contemporary romance with the hope that she will make others enjoy reading as much as she has. When she's not writing, she's staying connected to her inner hippie and searching the internet for funny memes. Her tribe includes a dog, two daughters, a ton of imaginary friends, and an incredible man who keeps her tethered to the ground while she flies.

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STOLEN IDENTITY
Amanda J. Evans

Two girls
Two different lives
Fated to help each other
But will they both survive?

Seventeen-year olds Emily Brown and Clara Brunsworth are from different worlds. One rich. One poor. While Emily is scouring the streets looking for a way to help feed her family, their two worlds collide.

As their friendship blossoms, Emily agrees to swap places with Clara for one evening. Unfortunately, fate has other plans and Emily ends up imprisoned in Barrow Haven Asylum where secrets and dark family history is revealed. Can Emily uncover the truth before it’s too late?

Can she become the girl she loathes, or will Barrow Haven and its tortures trap her forever?

Find out in this prince and the pauper style retelling from award winning author Amanda J Evans.

About Amanda J. Evans
Amanda J Evans is an award-winning Irish author of YA and Adult romance in paranormal and fantasy genres. Growing up with heroes like Luke Skywalker and Indiana Jones, her stories centre on good versus evil with a splice of love and magic thrown in too. Her books have all won awards and her latest novella, Hear Me Cry, won the Book of the Year Award at the Dublin Writers Conference 2018. Amanda has been featured in a number of poetry anthologies in 2017 and 2018 including A Bowl of Irish Stew, a charity anthology for Pieta House and her short story Moonlight Magic was included in the Owl Hollow Press Anthology, Under the Full Moon’s Light, published in October 2018. Amanda’s latest novel, Winterland, is currently on submission with agents and she is working on a number of anthology stories at present which will publish in 2019 and 2020. Amanda is also the author of Surviving Suicide: A Memoir from Those Death Left Behind, published in 2012.
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GRAVE CORRESPONDENCE
Lisa Acerbo

Committed to Barrow Haven Asylum after a falling out with his well-to-do family, Harry William’s only escape is to write letters. But he’s not sure if he controls what ends up on the page or the pen commands him. Does the devil own his soul?

About Lisa Acerbo
Lisa Acerbo loves to stay up late reading scary stories. She is a high school teacher and adjunct faculty at a local community college. She lives in Connecticut with her husband, daughters, and two rescue dogs. When not writing, she hikes and helps foster dogs find their forever homes.

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ADELINE’S ADMISSION
Sheri Lynn

As a teen, Adeline Shaw’s morbid fascination with suspected murderer and radical scientist, Edgar Walker, his companion, Louisa Becker, and the investigating detective, Stanley Price, led her down a path of grief, denial, and self-destruction. Residing almost half of her five and thirty years in asylums since, along with her vivid imagination, and victim to experimental, atrocious procedures, Adeline can’t distinguish reality from fantasy.

Does she learn she never endured the worst alone?

Some individuals live within their own set of boundaries. “We do what we must for those we love.”

About Sheri Lynn
Sheri Lynn also writes as Sheridan Knight.

I grew up an Army brat, so my childhood involved moving every three years. However, truly a southern gal, I currently split my time in Alabama and Florida with my husband, two Chihuahuas, two Golden Retrievers, a mean cat, and a turtle. I have two sons, who live on their own, a daughter in college, and a stepson and stepdaughter.

Romance novels have always been my first reading choice. I'm a hopeless romantic, and that trait materializes in every aspect of my life. “Wearing your heart on your sleeve” has been a common phrase repeatedly heard throughout my life. Writing romance and happily ever afters comes naturally.

Whether a result of my childhood, or not, I love to travel. Warm weather and beautiful beaches are always my choice destination.

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FALLEN
J.A. Cummings

When a viscount’s daughter is admitted to Barrow Haven Asylum, only twelve years old but pregnant and raving about fallen angels, matron Catherine Mills suspects that more is at play than a teenager’s guilty delusions.

About J.A. Cummings
J. A. Cummings was born in Flint, Michigan and was raised in a nearby town called Clio. Appropriately enough for someone growing up in a place named for the Muse of history, she developed a passion for reading and the past that continues to this day. Her love of poetry and storytelling quickly followed.

Her life has been one of numerous false starts, unexpected endings and fascinating side trips that lasted far too long. All of that chaos has informed her writing and improved her understanding of what it means to be human, both the sorrow and the glory.

She still resides in Michigan and pays the bills by working as a paralegal and ghostwriter.

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CLANDESTINE
Jennie L. Morris

Luella Carey isn’t crazy, not really, not that anyone believes her. Sent to Barrow Haven Asylum for a melancholic nature, she’s locked away at the behest of her father and his new wife.

Grieving for her mother’s death, Luella finds comfortable solitude in the asylum until several anonymous letters appear. Mr. Winifred Carey’s new wife intends murder. She plans to claim the Carey fortune as her own.

Mere days to escape the asylum and warn her father, Luella turns to a new friend, Mr. Isaac McEwen. The clock ticking down the hour, Luella fears her final decision. A grave mistake, perhaps? But who can she trust?

About Jennie L. Morris
As a self-proclaimed Anglophile and research geek, it's no wonder Jennie L. Morris writes Romance and Historical Fiction with a flair for realism. Her love for learning led her to obtain degrees in Anthropology and Biology, which she often relies on during her writing process. Coming from NE Ohio, and raised on a small beef cattle farm, life was anything but ordinary growing up.

Jennie now resides in rural Kentucky, among the bluegrass and dazzling horse farms, with her amazing husband and their boxer Archie. When she isn’t reading or writing, she is feeding her tea obsession or perfume addiction, letting the scents and flavors fuel her creative fires.

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THE VOICES OF REASON
J.V. Stanley

Arabella Evans loved to read. So much so that it affected her ability to determine fantasy from reality. It was a means to escape the confines of her own mind that foraged a means where she could exist freely in this world and the other…or were they just the voices clouding her mind in madness? She arrived at Barrow Haven Asylum on behest of her husband, whose political ties would be tarnished by a mad wife. Two weeks in, she realizes a malevolent force was at play within the asylum. Determined to find the connection between a large blood stain hidden beneath a carpet in the common room with another oddity that struck her—Silas Brentwood a man with the mind of a child associated with every clue.

Voices lurk within the walls of the asylum, just as they had in her home—seemingly an integral piece to the puzzle of the asylum, Arabella finds herself face-to-face with a murderer who walks freely, to which the voices in her head concur—something sinister lay in wait for her, the voices warn, but is she the only one that can heed their warning? Will the voices lead to reason? Can her own mind help her uncover the truth or is the intrigue nothing but a fabrication of her mind?

About J.V. Stanley
J. V. Stanley is an award-winning author and holds a BA in English and Communication. Her debut novel, “Faces In Still Waters” and poetry collection, “Chasing The Red” won first and second place in the 2016 Summer Indie Book Awards by Metamorph Publishing. Some of her publication credits include “The Library”, “Siren’s Lullaby” by Enchanted Anthologies, “Devious Ingenues”by Perfectly Poisoned, Anthologies, and Crazy Ink Publishing’s “Beyond Atlantis” among others. She is an IDPA Nationally Ranked Pistol Competitor—thus making her a warrior poet. She loves to bake, knit, read, and study herbalism. She currently lives in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan with her son and daughter (who’s also a writer) and spends copious amounts of time drinking over-sugared coffee while daydreaming on her keyboard.

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THE FASCINATION OF JEREMY FAIRWEATHER
Jo Seysener

Jeremy Fairweather’s ennui is killing him. The state of his country, or what little empathy men have for each other has almost broken him. The first son of a wealthy Viscount, Jeremy is both swathed in luxury and, thanks to his father’s influence, fettered to do anything about the world of poverty surrounding them. Needing a distraction, Jeremy concocts a mad idea to get himself committed for a few months. What could be madder than staying with the lions themselves? In seeking a cure for his ennui, the young lord discovers a new meaning for family, and the bonds of friendship that can’t be broken even by the greatest of sacrifices.

About Jo Seysener
Jo Seysener is a mum of three crazy kids and a rambunctious, 32kg lapdog. When she’s not exposing her kids to cult stories from her childhood, she can be found attempting to re-life browning herbs and tortured orchids. She writes picture books for children through Library for All – a non-profit organisation encouraging literacy in third world nations. She also writes speculative fiction for adults, collecting a growing number in anthologies. Jo lives with her husband near Brisbane, Australia. She adores alpacas.

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Thursday, January 16, 2020

GODS OF MERLIN by Priya Ardis

GODS OF MERLIN
by Priya Ardis

GREAT GREEK GODS. THEY ARE COMING.

Foster kid and occasional shoplifter Eowlyn Patience just wants to fit into her Boston high school. When the Sword In The Stone falls out of the sky like a meteor into the middle of London’s Trafalgar Square, everything changes. Then, an enigmatic golden-eyed man arranges for her to attend a school for the gifted in England, and the irritatingly perfect Matt Emrys from science class turns out to be Merlin—the Merlin, King Arthur’s greatest wizard.

Frozen in a cave for fifteen hundred years, Merlin has woken to find the next Arthur. Eowlyn Patience’s mysterious admittance to Avalon Preparatory was not something he foresaw…a disturbing aberration when his most powerful gift happens to be visions of the future.

The race to find the rightful heir rages between deadly gargoyles, wizards, and Regulars, but figuring out the troubled Eowlyn might be by-the-book Merlin’s hardest job yet. She’s altogether the wrong girl. Torn between what is right and what saves lives, will Eowlyn do what it takes to win—even if it means sacrificing Merlin to a god?

EXCERPT
“You are my Gwenhwyfar,” he said. “Or how do you say her name in your time? Guinevere.”

I stood, wanting to run but knowing it would do no good. Because I was not in reality. I was in a dream. I played along. “Wasn’t Guinevere King Arthur’s wife? I’m a little young. I belong to no one.”

“I did not come seeking a wife. My former love is the reason we are in this mess. I have chosen you to be my champion, my right hand. You will go where I cannot.”

I growled in disbelief. “What makes you think I would do anything for you?”

Golden eyes glowed as he considered me. Power radiated from his gaze. The power burned so bright, like the sun, that I would be burned if I looked too long. Then, golden eyes blinked. The light dimmed and I could breathe again.

He peered at me. I dropped to my knees on the ground.

He touched my cheek. “You will do it, Eowlyn Patience, because you crave what I do. You would do anything to leave this small life behind. You would do anything for a bit of power.” His thumb traced the line of my jaw. “Seize the day, my champion.”

~Follow the rest of the tour

REVIEW
This book’s description really grabbed me. I’m a big fan of mythology stories, and I like a good helping of Arthurian lore, too. Toss in a magic school, and you basically had me at hello. Unfortunately, I wasn’t as drawn in by this as I hoped, which was disappointing.

The concept for this story is fantastic. The sword in the stone lands in modern-day America, and everyone’s after it. That set up for a lot of great tension, both on political and personal levels. I found the world fascinating and really wanted to dig into the consequences of King Arthur (or his successor) coming to power.

The execution, though, didn’t quite work for me. Once the sword dropped, so many things started happening at once, and many of them didn’t feel adequately explained or alluded to. The story picked up speed at an alarming rate, and I felt left in the wake of a train that was hurdling down the tracks just fast enough for me to keep it in sight but too fast for me to see any details. As a result, I got lost fairly quickly, and the scenes that followed couldn’t get me back on track.

I had a tough time connecting with Eowlyn. I felt for her in the first scene when she didn’t want to go back to foster care. As time went on, though, she hardened to a point where I just couldn’t feel real emotions from her. She spent a lot of time getting into arguments with other characters that didn’t seem to resolve anything. I wasn’t even sure what the reasons behind some of the arguments were. The other characters didn’t stand out for me. Each seemed to have a prominent personality trait that was almost always at the forefront, and they didn’t quite feel like real people. I also wasn’t sure if some of the characters were reincarnations of figures from Arthurian legend or the actual people who just lived a very long time. They were teenagers, but they were hundreds of years old. Those characters also spoke in an odd mix of formal and modern slang, which really tripped me up. I couldn’t find a pattern or reason for the changes, which just left me wondering why they kept alternating between styles.

The characters combined with the story jumping ahead without me meant I just couldn’t get into this like I wanted to. After a while, the action sequences seemed to repeat themselves, and the plot twists confused me. There was a hierarchical struggle between wizards and gargoyles, which was fine. There were also distinctions of magical and non-magical students at the school that I didn’t understand at all. Some students used magic. Some didn’t, I think, and others were candidates to pull the sword from the stone, but I was unsure if they also used magic. With some more clarification and fleshing out of the characters, I could have truly loved this. As it is, it was a great concept with an execution I couldn’t follow.

ABOUT PRIYA

Priya Ardis loves books of all kinds--but especially the ones which make your nose leak and let your chai go cold. Her novels come from a childhood of playing too much She-Ra and watching too much Spock. Her bestselling series, My Boyfriend Merlin, about Merlin going to high school is a YA contemporary fantasy and romance for those like road trips, wizards, Greek gods, and gender-bent quests.

Talk to me!

My website

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Also find me on Barnes and Noble, Apple Books, Kobo, and Google Play

GIVEAWAYS

Priya Ardis will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner, and an autographed copy of the book (US only) to a second winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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Enter for a chance to #win EIGHT #signed #paperback #youngadult #books from eight of your favorite #authors. It's the #JingleYAGiveaway!

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

AMBER HOLLOW by Edgar Swamp

AMBER HOLLOW
by Edgar Swamp

On July 15, 1991, an isolated village in Northern Wisconsin is ground zero for an unprecedented, fiery tragedy. Of the community's 600 residents, there are only five survivors. Detailed accounts by the victims contradict each other; the only link is a man named Anthony Guntram, but because he is presumed to be dead, this claim can't be verified. Further investigations reveal a culture enshrouded in mystery. What are the survivors hiding?

Only the villagers know the secret of Amber Hollow, a place where sanity is checked at the town line and the parameters of reality become blurred. An unconventional horror story by design, Edgar Swamp delivers an action-driven page-turner that will keep readers guessing until the calamitous ending.

EXCERPT
The call came when they were five blocks from St. Mary’s, blaring from the radio in a raucous hiss of static that made both of them jump. Sadie looked at Jeremy, and the confusion in her eyes would be almost comical if the situation wasn’t so dire. He grabbed the handset on the radio, pressed the button.

“This is Detective Jeremy LeFevre. Please repeat the transmission.”

“There is a ten fifty-six A in progress on the Tower Drive Bridge, I repeat a ten fifty-six A.”

“We’re two miles from that location,” he said calmly, although his nerves suddenly felt as if they were live wires spitting enough electricity to power the entire city. “We’re en route.”

“Ten four,” the dispatcher said, and Sadie flipped a switch on the dash that fired up the siren. She then grabbed the bubble next to her, rolled down her window, and tossed it onto the top of the car where the magnet on the bottom held it firmly in place. For some reason, she always felt like she was in an episode of Starskey and Hutch when she did that.

“You thinking what I’m thinking?” Jeremy asked his partner.

“What are you thinking?”

“I don’t know, maybe I’m jumping to more conclusions, but somehow I think this is one call we need to take.”

Turned out, he was right.

~Buy AMBER HOLLOW on Amazon (only 99c on Kindle)

~Add it on Goodreads

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AN INTERVIEW WITH EDGAR
-What inspired you to become a writer?

I’ve always been a very spirited story teller, detailing largely fictitious accounts of where I spent my days (at construction sites, bowling alleys, seeing movies I wasn’t supposed to, or other general mischievous deeds) to my parents, grandparents, school teachers, etc. and them readily believing me. This penchant for what could be considered ‘lying’ I turned into stories that I’d tell my friends (I convinced a neighbor kid I could fly but I needed a special food to do it but I was out) and then later was encouraged by teachers to write these elaborate fantasies down. I hit paydirt in the eighth grade with interest from a cute girl regarding one of my stories (it may have been about vampires) and the rest is history! I was instantly hooked like a teenager on a Pornhub binge, and writing became a necessary part of my regular life.

-If you could visit your book’s world for a day, what one thing would you do?

My book is set in 1991, approximately three months before Grunge would commercially take the world by storm and kill off the hair metal bands. If I could travel to the Green Bay of 1991 in my novel “Amber Hollow”, I would check the paper to see if Nirvana, Pearl jam, Alice in Chains, Smashing Pumpkins, or Soundgarden was playing in either Madison or Milwaukee (chances are pretty good that one of them—or another cool band on a low budget van tour—would be) and I’d go and see their show. While there, I’d buy a t-shirt and then get it autographed by Kurt Cobain, Eddie Vedder, Layne Staley, Billy Corgan, or Chris Cornell, and then seal it in mylar and sell it today for the highest asking price at an auction in Manhattan. I want to be frank: it isn’t because of some desperate, last-ditch, celebrity cash-in…oh, um, yeah, uh, right…it is…

-It’s two in the morning. What does your protagonist reveal in confidence? (Don’t worry, we won’t tell.)

I’ve somehow managed to get a date with Detective Sadie Conrad, and after dinner and a movie I take her home, and she politely invites me in for a drink, hoping I will decline. No dice, I accept. Since she is attracted to another man, she tries to get rid of me, but I ignore her not-so-subtle hints and stay way too late, drinking all of her beer and telling her obnoxious stories about my days performing with various rock/metal bands and living in squalor amongst crab-infested groupies who would drip LSD into their eyeballs. Subsequently she becomes disgusted with me and decides to have a couple beers too, and confesses that the case regarding Amber Hollow is getting to her, and that maybe she should have reconsidered going into this line of work because of all the danger she is putting herself in. As the writer, I know her fate, and I want to assure her that she’ll be OK, but I might be lying. I have to confess: I’m really good at that!

-Which of your characters would you go out for drinks with?

Again, “Amber Hollow” is set in 1991, in the state of Wisconsin, in the city of Green Bay (amongst other townships both real and made up). My father has a cameo in the novel because he worked for the police station I used in the book, the Brown County Sheriff’s Department, and he was in his late 40’s at the time. I’d like to be my age now (50) and hang out with my Dad while he still drank alcohol. He had to quit for health reasons in September of 1991, only a few months after I’d turned twenty-one, so I never in my life got to have a ‘proper’ beer with my Dad (we were both in the house and imbibing at the same time, but we weren’t hanging out). So I’d head over to the police station and everyone would marvel at how much I look like him (a woman at Home Depot commented just the other day that she thought we were brothers), and because of this absurd peculiarity (my father is a man of science; this situation would perplex/amuse him) he’d accept my offer to sit outside in the parking lot and shotgun a six pack of Pabst! I love you Dad!

-You’re in a tavern, and a dwarf challenges you to a duel. What do you do?

Oh, Oh, Oh! I know this one! Thirty years ago, while I was living in filth with a performing rock/psychedelic/punk/metal band called Electric Marble, we had a neighbor who was a great guy but a notorious drunk. He’d stumble into our jam room while we were rehearsing, dancing around in circles, spilling beer from his open bottle everywhere, and eventually he’d wipe out and crash into a stack of speakers or the drum set, creating utter chaos and pissing us off. One time, when we weren’t playing, we were just sitting around listlessly watching A Clockwork Orange, he stormed in and insisted we learn how to Indian leg wrestle much to our protestations (he is an American Indian, and a Vietnam War veteran like my father. Cecil, I hope you’re still out there, man!) but he wasn’t taking ‘no’ for an answer. I didn’t want to do it because of the physicality it required, but he got in my face and literally made me, and I’ll tell you what…it was a hoot! If a dwarf challenged me to a duel, I would comply, but it would have to be an Indian leg wrestling contest, no exceptions. Once the (I’m assuming) angry dwarf is made aware of how to play, the duel will commence. The rules for the match? Each player lies on their back across from one another with one leg extended into the air and the players ‘lock legs’ (they hook each other’s leg around the other’s) with the idea of turning the other person over on their side with force of their efforts. I think you now realize why I at first didn’t want to play: it looked barbaric! It was brutal, but not life-threatening. A duel where the bested man (or woman…or dwarf) only suffers the indignity of losing their pride, which shouldn’t really be a factor if you’re playing Indian leg wresting in the first place!

-Is there a genre you could never write? Which and why?

I enjoy so many different types of literature that I honestly feel I could write in any genre, but I must confess that my creative soul seeks out the ‘dark side’ , so forays into lighter works (romance, chick-lit, puff-pieces) would possibly sound insincere, maybe even a bit contrived. With my novel “Amber Hollow” I have written the first book of my career for a wide audience (basically, PG-13), and I am proud that I could conform to those censorial discrepancies and come up with something I can be proud of, without all the gratuitous gore and pornographic sex. I honestly believe readers of “Amber Hollow” will be so intrigued that they’ll check out my pornographically ultra-violent prior works, if only for the aforementioned depravity!

ABOUT EDGAR

Edgar Swamp is the author of the “Gyre Mission,” “Glitch in the Machine,” and “Blackout.” His short stories have appeared in Alienskin, Macabre Cadaver, and Urban Reinventors. When he isn’t holed up in his office playing online poker, he likes to dig up the recently deceased and make furniture out of their skin. He lives and works in San Diego, California.

Find him online:

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GIVEAWAY

Edgar Swamp will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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Thursday, January 9, 2020

CHARM ME AGAIN by Tena Stetler

CHARM ME AGAIN
by Tena Stetler

Daylan, a warlock, is being haunted, but what the ghost wants is a mystery. His magical powers bring him no closer to an answer—until he encounters Josie, a Yoga instructor.

But when she is kidnapped by an ancient Fae Warrior set on revenge Daylan must rescue her before the rogue claims her as his own. During his quest, his world spirals out of control, and a devastating curse comes to light. Could the ghost hold the answers he needs? Can he break the age-old curse to save Josie and their future, or will Daylan lose her forever?

EXCERPT
Suddenly, the wind changed direction, a thin maroon line formed along the flat bottom of the dark clouds spreading across the sky where moments before there’d been only a few fluffy cotton ball clouds in a sea of blue. The maroon line widened then switched to vertical and spread open to reveal a shimmering interior.

Shadows emerged from the cloud then disappeared. As he was about to comment, huge raindrops plopped on the ground followed by pea size hail that grew to softball size.

Josie ran for cover and he followed. Protected under a ledge, she cupped her hands over her ears as the roaring of the storm combined with huge ice balls smashing against rocks echoed through the canyon. She elbowed him and cocked a brow in question, pointing to the vegetation that remained unharmed.

His eyes narrowed. Something isn’t right. I can feel it. Magic is spinning this storm. But who—how and why? At a loss for answers, he shrugged and urged her further under the ledge to wait out the storm. Brushing the wet strands of hair out of her face, he smiled. She looked like a drowned rat but the fragrance around her reminded him of sweet spring flowers. He leaned into to her and brushed his lips over hers. Immediately, he straightened and backed away. Her eyes were still closed. Maybe I could’ve lingered…

Her eyes blinked open and she licked her lips. After a beat, she waggled a finger in front of him. “Not a good idea.”

REVIEW
This was a fun and flirty paranormal romance with strong tension and some great family drama. I enjoyed watching the characters move through various feelings toward one another, ranging from sibling disgust to romantic love. As a yoga person, I appreciated the yoga studio and found myself drawn toward the story due to the presence of yoga.

Josie and Daylan were a cute couple. There was a lot of banter, which made them fun. Their journey from friends to lovers felt a bit off-the-page. Actually, for a romance, the romance part felt a bit back-burner to the other conflicts. As a result, Josie and Daylan getting together felt, not really like a surprise, but sudden. Regardless, I liked them as a couple.

The author makes a note to talk about companion animals, and the puppies were a big part of this book. I mean, I love a good dog in any story, but this one really stood out. Overall, this story offered some cool magic, family tensions, and a satisfying (if not as fleshed out as it could have been) romance. Recommend for paranormal romance readers.

~Follow the rest of the tour

ABOUT TENA

Tena Stetler is a best-selling author of award winning paranormal romance. She has an over-active imagination, which led to writing her first vampire romance as a tween to the chagrin of her mother and delight of her friends. After many years as a paralegal, then an IT Manager, she decided to live out her dream of pursuing a publishing career.

With the Rocky Mountains outside her window, she sits at her computer surrounded by a wide array of witches, shapeshifters, demons, faeries, and gryphons, with a Navy SEAL or two mixed in telling their tales. Her books tell stories of magical kick-ass women and mystical alpha males that dare to love them. Travel, adventure and a bit of mystery flourish in her books along with a few companion animals to round out the tales.

Colorado is home; shared with her husband of many moons, a brilliant Chow Chow, a spoiled parrot and a forty-five-year-old box turtle. When she’s not writing, her time is spent kayaking, camping, hiking, biking or just relaxing in the great Colorado outdoors. During the winter you can find her curled up in front of a crackling fire with a good book, a mug of hot chocolate and a big bowl of popcorn.

Find her online:

-website
-Author’s Secrets blog
-My Say What blog
-Facebook
-Twitter
-Goodreads
-The Wild Rose Press
-Amazon
-newsletter
-Pinterest
-Tribber
-Bookbub
-Instagram
-BookGorilla

GIVEAWAY

Tena Stetler will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, January 2, 2020

DRAGON MIST by David Burnett

DRAGON MIST
by David Burnett

As the third daughter of a third daughter, dragon-shifter Christine Drachen must mate with a human.

Not all human males are genetically compatible with dragon shifters, and suitable matches are rare in old Charleston. Christine, though, has identified James to be an appropriate match. Even humans who acknowledge the possibility of dragons cannot believe that one can be both a dragon and a human, shifting between the two. As a result, Christine must attract James without fully revealing her true, shifting nature until he has committed to mate.

James gradually discovers what Christine is. She shows him the gold dragon she always wears around her neck. He notices the prints, statues, and tapestries of dragons that decorate her family’s home. Strange noises emanate from behind the Drachens’ house during a party, and James believes he actually sees a dragon, one wearing a necklace like Christine’s. Christine’s last name, Drachen, means “dragon,” and, while she jokes her entire family is composed of the creatures, James begins to suspect there is more to what she says than a simple attempt at humor.

Finally, though, he sees her shift.

To protect their species from persecution, dragon-shifters silence any human who sees one of them shift, and the most practical method is generally death. The rule is absolute. But Christine has fallen in love with James. How can she protect her family without killing the boy she loves?

Dragon Mist is a story of boy-meets-girl, with a few non-human characters, high stakes, a bit of magic, a little humor, and an abundance of romance.

EXCERPT
Skinny-dipping in the Bay is grounds for arrest, but it is after midnight, and officers have more serious concerns than a couple of publicly indecent teenagers splashing about in the cool water. No one will see Bing Bong and me anyway. The quarter moon is rising in the east, but clouds are skidding across the sky, hiding its light, the security lamp halfway across the park seems more decorative than useful, and even though my species’ eyes are sensitive in low light, it is only by hearing its water lapping on the shore that I can tell the Bay lies only a few feet away.

“Are you with me, Dragon Lady?” Bing’s drawl breaks the silence.

My street name, the one by which I’ve been known all summer, is “Lady Dragon,” but Bing insists on reversing the words, making it sound less formal and more egalitarian. Perhaps he cannot remember it correctly. Maybe he simply teases me.

Bing likely believes I adopted my name at random from the small, golden dragon suspended from the chain around my neck, but it is more descriptive than he imagines, referring to my species, the reason I wear the small dragon.

An understandable human error.

~Follow the rest of the tour

ABOUT DAVID

I live near Charleston, South Carolina, where I walk the beaches, eat fresh seafood, and photograph the ocean, the birds, and the beautiful sunsets. Seven of my nine novels have been set in Charleston, but Dragon Mist is the first to explore the lives of the non-human residents of the “holy city.”

Find more of my work on my website!

Sign up for my newsletter.

Find David elsewhere:

-Twitter
-Facebook
-Amazon Author Page
-Goodreads Author Page

GIVEAWAY

A dragon pendant similar to the one worn byChristine Drachen in Dragon Mist (US only)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, December 30, 2019

RETALIATION by Haley Cavanagh

RETALIATION
by Haley Cavanagh

Sakota saved Astraeus and her friends from certain death, but in doing so, she gained the attention of the Oreck, who will stop at nothing to destroy everything in their path. With their ship severely damaged, Sakota and her crew land on a nearby planet and seek sanctuary while they make repairs to return home. But nothing on this perfect planet is as it appears, and Sakota soon learns they've traded one danger for another. Hunted and targeted, will Sakota be able to carry out her mission, or will everyone she cares about be destroyed?

EXCERPT
Sakota took a deep breath. “Okay. Let’s do it. We’re not going to survive if we don’t.” Hisoka and Tatiana turned around to man their consoles. She ate the last of her ration piece and slipped her hand into Astraeus’s. The escape pod reached the mouth of the black hole, then without warning, surged forward.

When Sakota was a child, long before Alistair rescued her from the orphanage in the squalid wasteland of London, the other children liked to play a game called Lights Out. In the main room where she bunked with fifteen other girls, a shaft of light streamed in from the hallway, in the same spot every night, like clockwork. The adult on night duty would check in once an hour and perform a headcount as they slept.

A few nights a week, a handful of the girls awakened and killed the hallway lights so they could scare and torture whomever they didn’t like among them. It was a powerful systematic lesson, however cruel. Sakota grew up knowing her place at the bottom rung of life. She’d never fit into the cookie-cutter type molding the upper-class girls had been bred for. She’d proved early on that she’d fight back with a vengeance when provoked, but she wasn’t certain which was worse; being preyed upon or listening to other girls’ pleas for help as she lay in the pitch-black room. The memory had stayed with her well into adulthood, as well as the countless times she could and should have stepped in to help instead of being crippled by primal fear and self-preservation. Children could be cruel. But the fear she’d experienced then was nothing, nothing, compared to being sucked into a black hole.

The escape pod whirled inside the conduit and pitched them around in a circle. They spun, at the mercy of inexhaustible energy along the black hole’s trajectory. Though she’d experienced raw fear when the Oreck had taken over the Sleipnir science vessel and killed everyone, this was different. Before, she at least had an idea what she was up against. Three razor-sharp talons emerging from claws didn’t lie. Being sucked into the black hole was like being an ant in a cyclone.

Astraeus squeezed her palm reassuringly. She turned and looked at him. They were both strapped in, tight.

Astraeus squeezed her hand. “Don’t be afraid.”

The speed of the escape pod amplified. Ribbons of light streamed past the windows like gossamer silk as the ship darted into unknown darkness. Sakota gritted her teeth. Oh, screw not acting afraid. She was terrified.

~Buy RETALIATION:

-Amazon
-B&N
-iTunes
-Kobo

~Add it on Goodreads

~Follow the rest of the tour

ABOUT HALEY

Haley Cavanagh is a military veteran, wife, and mother. She is an alumna of Columbia College, a musical theater nut, and she loves to dive into any book that crosses her path. Haley resides with her family in the United States and enjoys spending time with her husband and children when she’s not writing. She loves to hear from her readers, and encourages you to contact her via her website and social media.

Find her online:

-website
-newsletter
-Bookbub
-Twitter
-Pinterest
-Pinterest
-Goodreads

GIVEAWAYS

$10 Amazon/BN GC

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The author is also giving away a $25 Amazon Gift Card and Autographed Paperback/Swag Bundle (ends January 15).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, December 19, 2019

TO WEAVE A HIGHLAND TAPESTRY by Mary Morgan

TO WEAVE A HIGHLAND TAPESTRY
by Mary Morgan

Patrick MacFhearguis, hardened by battles won and lost, desires what he can never have—peace within his heart and soul. Yet, the ever-meddling Fae weave a new journey for him to conquer—a task this highlander is determined to resist.

When skilled weaver, Gwen Hywel, is commissioned to create a tapestry for the MacFhearguis clan, she embraces the assignment. While seeking out ideas, she finds herself clutching the one thread that can alter the tapestry of her life and heart.

A man conflicted by past deeds. A woman with no family of her own. Is it possible for love to unravel an ancient past, in order to claim two badly scarred hearts? Or will the light of hope be doused forever?

EXCERPT
His presence loomed from behind her. “If ye will permit me, I shall roll my knuckles along your back.”

Heat flared instantly up her neck, but Gwen nodded, giving him permission.

When the first contact of his fist swept across her back, Gwen let out a moan. Pain and pleasure fought for dominance. She closed her eyes against the sensation of his healing and seductive touch, allowing her body to ease from its rigid position.

“Let your limbs relax,” he urged.

“Feels so good,” she mumbled.

He splayed his fingers and massaged the knots along the column of her neck. Delicious pinpricks trickled down her back, along with the melting snow on her head. Gwen knew she presented a wretched sight, but she gave no care. His fingers caressed the top of her spine, and wove their way down to both shoulders. By the time he finished, her body was on fire with another type of ache, but her muscles had loosened up. There was no denying the man ignited a spark within her.

Gwen turned around slowly.

He placed his hand above her on the tree, trapping her against the rough bark with his body. Lowering his head near her ear, he whispered. “Better?”

The word had her breathing rapidly. Gwen did the unthinkable and pressed her cheek against him—his beard grazing her face. “Yes.”

“Good,” he breathed the word against her skin and withdrew.

He held her captive with the intensity of his gaze—compelling and magnetic.

~Buy TO WEAVE A HIGHLAND TAPESTRY:

-Amazon US
-Amazon CA
-Amazon UK
-Amazon AU
-Apple

~Check out the book page on the author’s website

~Follow the rest of the tour

AN INTERVIEW WITH MARY
-What inspired you to become a writer?

Ever since I was a young girl, I’d make up stories in my head. Often times, I was told to stop daydreaming and pay attention. Yet the stories lived inside me—my mind was my playground. I used to keep diaries, which were filled with poems and daily happenings in my young life. In addition, I composed plays for my family and my siblings, and we would perform them in front of our parents. They were usually plays centered around Christmas.

As I grew older, the dream of being a writer faded. It wasn’t until my first trip to Scotland and Ireland that I reconsidered writing again. And the stories began to unfold.

-If you could visit your book’s world for a day, what one thing would you do?

I’d have a grand feast in the Great Hall at Urquhart Castle with all my characters. After the meal, I’d ask them if there was anything different I could have featured or presented. Did I portray them accurately? Of course, I want all those delicious dishes and treats I talked about in my stories, as well.

-It’s two in the morning. What does your protagonist reveal in confidence? (Don’t worry, we won’t tell.)

Unfortunately, he’s enjoying the sounds his wife is making while he pleasures her body. I’ve been ordered to stay out of the chamber until after dawn.

-Which of your characters would you go out for drinks with?

The first one that pops into my mind is the legendary leader of the Fenian Warriors, Aidan Kerrigan, from Destiny of a Warrior. He has an edge over all the heroes in my stories. I’d love to share a pint or two with him.

-You’re in a tavern, and a dwarf challenges you to a duel. What do you do?

I’d order two drams of the best whisky in the tavern and challenge him to a game of dice. Loser buys the next round of drinks.

-Is there a genre you could never write? Which and why?

Contemporary mystery/thrillers. Trust me, I love a good mystery in the genres I read, but this particular one is a genre that I have no desire to read or write.

ABOUT MARY

Award-winning Celtic paranormal and fantasy romance author, Mary Morgan, resides in Northern California with her own knight in shining armor. However, during her travels to Scotland, England, and Ireland, she left a part of her soul in one of these countries and vows to return.

Mary's passion for books started at an early age along with an overactive imagination. Inspired by her love for history and ancient Celtic mythology, her tales are filled with powerful warriors, brave women, magic, and romance. It wasn't until the closure of Borders Books where Mary worked that she found her true calling by writing romance. Now, the worlds she created in her mind are coming to life within her stories.

If you enjoy history, tortured heroes, and a wee bit of magic, then time-travel within the pages of her books.

Find her online:

-website/blog
- Twitter
-Facebook
-Goodreads
-Amazon
-Pinterest
-Instagram
-Bookbub
-Linkedin
-Audible

GIVEAWAY

Mary Morgan will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway