Wednesday, October 26, 2016

YELLOW HAIR by Andrew Joyce

by Andrew Joyce

Yellow Hair documents the injustices done to the Sioux Nation from their first treaty with the United States in 1805 through Wounded Knee in 1890. Every death, murder, battle, and outrage written about actually took place. The historical figures that play a role in this fact-based tale of fiction were real people and the author uses their real names. Yellow Hair is an epic tale of adventure, family, love, and hate that spans most of the 19th century. This is American history.



My name is Andrew Joyce and I write books for a living. Mary has been kind enough to allow me a little space on her blog to talk about my latest, Yellow Hair.

Yellow Hair documents the injustices done to the Sioux Nation from their first treaty with the United States in 1805 through Wounded Knee in 1890. Every death, murder, battle, and outrage depicted actually took place—from the first to the last. The historical figures that play a role in my story were real people and I used their real names. I conjured up my protagonist only to weave together the various events conveyed in my fact-based tale of fiction. Yellow Hair is an epic tale of adventure, family, love, and hate that spans most of the 19th century. It is American history.

The inspiration for the book came to me when I was reading a short article and it made reference to the Great Sioux Uprising of 1862. It also mentioned that the outcome involved the largest mass execution in the history of the United States. That piqued my interest.

When I started my research into the incident, one thing led to another and before I knew it, I was documenting the entire history of the Sioux, who are also known as the Dakota, vis-à-vis the relationship between them and the United States.

Because the book exists only because I read the phrase, “the largest mass execution in the history of the United States,” I’ll tell you a little about that. What follows is an extremely abbreviated version of events.

The Dakota signed their first treaty with the United States in 1805 when they sold a small portion of their land to the Americans for the purpose of building forts. It was right after the Louisiana Purchase and President Jefferson wanted a presence in the West. At the time, “the West” was anything on the western side of the Mississippi River.

In the treaty of 1805, the Dakota sold 100,000 acres to the Americans. The agreed-upon price was $2.00 per acre. But when the treaty came up before the Senate for ratification, the amount was changed to two cents per acre. That was to be a precursor for all future treaties with the Americans. There were subsequent treaties in 1815, 1825, 1832, 1837, and 1851, and basically the same thing happened with all those treaties.

In 1837, the Americans wanted an additional five million acres of Dakota land. Knowing it would be a hard sell after the way they failed to live up to the letter or spirit of the previous treaties, the government brought twenty-six Dakota chiefs to Washington to show them the might and majesty that was The United States of America.

The government proposed paying one million dollars for the acreage in installments over a twenty-year period. Part of the payment was to be in the form of farm equipment, medicine, and livestock. Intimidated, the Indians signed the treaty and went home. The United States immediately laid claim to the lands—the first payment did not arrive for a year.

The significance of the 1837 treaty lies in the fact that it was the first time “traders” were allowed to lay claim to the Indians’ payments without any proof that money was owed . . . and without consulting the Indians. Monies were subtracted from the imbursements and paid directly to the traders.

By 1851, the Americans wanted to purchase all of the Dakota’s remaining lands—twenty-five million acres. The Sioux did not want to sell, but were forced to do so with threats that the army could be sent in to take the land from them at the point of a gun if they refused the American’s offer.

“If we sell our land, where will we live?” asked the Dakota chief.

“We will set aside land for the Dakota only. It is called a reservation and it will be along both banks of the Minnesota River, twenty miles wide, ten on each side and seventy miles long. It will be yours until the grasses no longer grow,” answered the Commissioner of Indian Affairs.

The Dakota were offered six cents an acre for land that was worth at least a dollar an acre. The payment would be stretched out over a twenty year period and was to be made in the form of gold coins. One year later, in 1852, the Americans took half the reservation, the seventy miles on the north side of the river. The Dakota were now reduced from a nation of fierce, independent people to a people dependent on hand-outs from the ones who stole not only their land, but also their dignity.

The Dakota were forced to buy their food from the traders who ran trading posts at the Indian Agency the U.S. Government had set up on the reservation. All year long the Dakota would charge what they needed. When the yearly payment for their land arrived, the traders would take what they said was owed them. Subsequently, there was very little gold left for the Dakota.

By 1862, the Dakota were starving. That year’s payment was months late in arriving because of the Civil War. The traders were afraid that because of the war there would be no payment that year and cut off the Dakota’s credit. The Indian Agent had the power to force the traders to release some of the food stocks, but refused when asked to do so by the Dakota.

After they had eaten their ponies and dogs, and their babies cried out in the night from hunger, the Dakota went to war against the United States of America.

They attacked the agency first and liberated the food stock from the warehouse, killing many white people who lived there. Then bands of braves set out to loot the farms in the surrounding countryside.

Many whites were killed in the ensuing weeks. However, not all of the Dakota went to war. Many stayed on the reservation and did not pick up arms against their white neighbors. Some saved the lives of white settlers. Still, over 700 hundred whites lost their lives before the rebellion was put down.

When the dust settled, all of the Dakota—including women and children, and those people who had saved settlers’ lives—were made prisoners of war.

Three hundred and ninety-six men were singled out to stand trial before a military commission. They were each tried separately in trials that lasted only minutes. In the end, three hundred and three men were sentenced to death.

Even though he was occupied with the war, President Lincoln got involved. He reviewed all three hundred and three cases and pardoned all but thirty-eight of the prisoners.

On a gray and overcast December morning in 1862, the scaffold stood high. Thirty-eight nooses hung from its crossbeams. The mechanism for springing the thirty-eight trap doors had been tested and retested until it worked perfectly. At exactly noon, a signal was given, a lever pulled, and the largest mass execution to ever take place in the United States of America became part of our history.


Andrew Joyce left high school at seventeen to hitchhike throughout the US, Canada, and Mexico. He wouldn’t return from his journey until decades later when he decided to become a writer. Joyce has written five books, including a two-volume collection of one hundred and fifty short stories comprised of his hitching adventures called BEDTIME STORIES FOR GROWN-UPS (as yet unpublished), and his latest novel, YELLOW HAIR. He now lives aboard a boat in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with his dog, Danny, where he is busy working on his next book, tentatively entitled, MICK REILLY.

Visit Andrew’s website

Friday, October 21, 2016


Please join author Unoma Nwankwor as she tours the blogosphere with Write Now Literary Book Tours and her new release The Final Ultimatum, October 21, 2016.
Book Title: The Final Ultimatum
Author: Unoma Nwankwor
Publication Date:  Oct 21, 2016
Genre: Christian Romance
About The Book
For the second time in Olanma Obinze-Rice’s life love hasn’t been good to her. Five years ago, a repossessed car and the looming threat of eviction, left Olanma Obinze-Rice in dire need of cash. Then out of the blue, she landed an interview of a lifetime that would solve all her problems. But she had to go through former bad boy and heir of Rice Holdings, Abayomi Rice. One ultimatum, a whirlwind romance and a life scare later, Olanma and Abayomi were married.
Now all Olanma wants is to be free. Free from her rocky marriage, manipulative husband and overbearing father. If everything goes according to plan, she’ll be divorced and free from her father’s clutches by her thirtieth birthday. All she has to do is wrap up one last business deal. Once he gets divorce papers, Abayomi Rice knows his wife has called his bluff. He didn’t mean to manipulate her but her broken promises and inability to stand up to her father tore them apart.
Despite their present state, the finality of a divorce is not an option. He wants his wife back. With his sister’s wedding coming up, he sets his plan in motion and issues one final ultimatum- pretend to be a happy couple one last time. Their farce leads to unexpected healing of their hearts, but then life throws another wrench in the plan. An ultimatum brought them together will this final one tear them apart?
About The Author
Born in Akron, Ohio to Nigerian parents, Unoma Nwankwor is a multi-published author and 2015 winner of the Nigerian Writers’ Award for Best Faith Based Fiction. Her readers are in love with her unique story telling that fuses faith, romance and African spice, capturing the essence of her present home base; Atlanta and her Nigerian culture. She is also the COO ofKevStel Group LLC and resides in Atlanta with her husband and two kids.
“Nma, so where’s this husband you keep saying you have?” Abayomi heard the man say as he approached.
Olanma giggled and then abruptly stopped. Abayomi knew that in that moment she sensed his presence. She turned sideways, but the man she was with was so busy checking her out that he didn’t see Abayomi walk up.
“If he’s not taking care of…”
“I hear you’re looking for me and I take care of my wife just fine.” Abayomi came to a halt between Olanma and the man.
The look of shock on both their faces was satisfying. Nma? He couldn’t believe she allowed another man to call her that. Not even her father called her “beauty.” Only two people had that privilege – he and her grandmother. Or so he thought.
Abayomi snaked his arm around his wife’s waist and kissed her hair. He then stretched out his other hand to the man. “Abayomi Rice, said husband.”
The expression on the man’s face switched from shock to embarrassment. At least he had some shame.
After a few moments, he heard his wife say, “Yomi, this is Emeka Maduka, an old friend.”
Old friend? That’s what she thought. The man wanted her. Abayomi wasn’t fooled. He wrote the book on old friends. It was time to cut this little reunion short. “It was nice meeting you. I’ll take my wife now.”
Abayomi didn’t wait for a response before he ushered Olanma out of the ballroom. He found a secluded area where they could talk. He stared at her and began to pace. He had never been good at hiding his possessive nature.
“Yomi, that was rude and what are you doing here?” Olanma asked in a hushed whisper.
“Apparently, reminding you that you’re still my wife.”
She stared at him in disbelief. “No, I’m not doing this with you.”
“Really? Nma,” Abayomi said, his tone laced with irritation and sarcasm.
“You’ve got some nerve. You pop into Lagos two days ago, and then you don’t come home…” Her voice was shaky with rage. “I’m not doing this with you. Not here.” She began to walk away.
Abayomi exhaled. He was messing this up. “Olanma, wait.”
She stopped, but didn’t turn around.
“I’m sorry. I saw him touch you and then you laughed with him. I haven’t heard that sound in ages and I saw red.”
He hadn’t meant to reveal all that, but masked feelings were what had brought them to this point. If there was going to be a chance for them, they would have to lay down the masks. And since he was the one that was served with divorce papers, he had to take the first step. His prayer was that his vulnerability would lead them back to the intimacy they once shared. Where their souls were tied as one and hopefully rebuild their trust. He hoped she would see that.
Olanma walked back to him and stared at him intently. “It’s been a year. What did you expect? That I’d curl up and die?” She turned and walked away.
Her heated eyes showed him her soul. She was hurt, but so was he. This wasn’t what he imagined for them. Past the pain and anger he saw in her eyes, he also saw longing and love. It was clearer to him that restoring his marriage would be an uphill battle. Losing, however, wasn’t an option.
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Thursday, October 20, 2016

THE AFTER WAR by Brandon Zenner

by Brandon Zenner

Two years have passed since mankind faced extinction.

Brain Rhodes and his cousin, Steven, are leaving the protection of their underground bunker for the first time, after a cataclysmic war and unrelenting disease ravaged the earth.

On the other side of the North American continent, young Simon Kalispell is leaving the safety and seclusion of his cabin deep in the woods, traveling with his aging canine companion, Winston.

For individual reasons, these men are traveling east, where the fragmented lives of a small number of survivors will soon be decided by the choices of a corrupt few.

Simon Kalispell and Brian Rhodes are not yet aware, but the strength that resides inside them will soon be tested, and destiny will call for their fates to be forever intertwined.

Brian Rhodes cracked open the solid steel trapdoor of the bunker, using his shoulder to carry its weight as he stepped up to the next rung of the ladder. A rush of warm, dusty air sucked down the entry chute, pulled in like a vacuum from the plank-board shed built to conceal the shelter door and the two men who had been hiding below ground. Brian kept his pistol at eye level as the metal door creaked, and a horizontal slit of light—real sunlight—hit his eyes for the first time in over two years.

~Buy THE AFTER WAR on Amazon. The book is 99c during the tour.


Brandon Zenner is an American fiction writer and an Amazon best selling author. His short fiction has been published in both print and online publications, the first being submitted when he was 19 years old. THE EXPERIMENT OF DREAMS, his debut eBook thriller, has reached Amazon's best seller list many times. His second novel, WHISKEY DEVILS, was released in early 2016. THE AFTER WAR, a dystopian thriller, is available now as a pre-order, at 80% off the final sale price. You can follow the author on his Amazon page, or through his email list on his website. All email subscribers will receive his futuristic short story, HELIX ILLUMINATED, for free as a thank you. His genres of choice are thrillers, crime, dystopian, and science fiction.

~Find Brandon online:


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Brandon Zenner will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn commenter via Rafflecopter.

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Sunday, October 16, 2016


from Transmundane Press

The happily ever after is never the end. The curtain doesn't fall once love is recognized or evil is vanquished. Credits don't roll once the giant is slain or the big bad wolf is boiled alive. Wicked stepsisters, malevolent rulers, and hideous creatures still have lives after their sinister roles play out; heroes, lovers, and dreamers often find their victories lead to more troubles.

Within these pages are more than seventy continuations, retellings, and eldritch stories that explore the dark forests, magical castles, and hideous creatures After the Happily Ever After.

EXCERPT: from “Beanstalk” by Edward Cooke
After breakfast, his mother made him sit down and browse through an entire brochure of woodcuts depicting modish kitchens.

“Do you think our oven is big enough for a small child to hide in? Because I don't.”

Jack agreed that they ought to get a new oven as a matter of urgency. He would have agreed to anything, just to get himself out of the house and on the way to market.

He hoped against hope that he might meet a stranger on the way, but the only person he encountered was Ermintrude, coming out of Gretchen's house. She offered to go with him to market. She wanted to pay a visit to the haberdasher and get some new buttons for her blouse, all the old ones having fallen off during the night. But Jack insisted on going well in front of her, in case the sight of Ermintrude holding her blouse half-shut frightened off the sort of stranger who purveyed magical beans.

He reached the market and hesitated, depressed that all you could do with money was buy either consumables or trinkets. When Ermintrude arrived, he bought her some new buttons, a diamond necklace, and a couple of cows she liked the look of. Minutes later she was bored with all her new purchases. A pumpkin-shaped carriage caught her eye, but Jack was out of cash—he had spent all the gold pieces his mother had made the previous day. He hadn’t even enough left to pay Old Ned for that evening's session at the Nag.

~Preorder links:


Alisha Costanzo is from a Syracuse suburb. She earned her MFA in creative writing from the University of Central Oklahoma, where she currently teaches English. She’s the author of BLOOD PHOENIX: REBIRTH, BLOOD PHOENIX: CLAIMED, and LOVING RED, and is co-editor of DISTORTED and UNDERWATER. IMPRINTED, her new novel, is undergoing serious edits for its 2017 release. In the meantime, she will continue to corrupt young minds, rant about the government, and daydream about her all around nasty creatures.

Having relocated from Northwest Florida’s lonesome roads and haunted swamps, Anthony S. Buoni now prowls the gas lamp lit streets of New Orleans, playing moonlight hide and seek in the Crescent City’s above ground cemeteries. Anthony is the author of Conversation Party, Bad Apple Bolero, as well as the editor to the Between There anthologies. His stories and articles have been featured in North Florida Noir and Waterfront Living. When not prowling, Anthony keeps it scary, writing dark fiction, editing, and watching horror movies. In his spare time, he DJs, plays music, and conjures other worldly creatures with tarot cards and dreams.

Find Transmundane Press online:



After the Happily Ever After Cover Reveal Giveaway

Tuesday, October 11, 2016


by Jason Pere

The time of the Unity has ended. Now, the realm of man is stranded between Paradise and Purgatory. The Valkyrie and Reaper battle over the fate of all who pass from the land of the living and into the afterlife.

Eight mortal spirits from vastly different worlds tread the same, inevitable path toward their last, crucial decision. Within them all exists the defining conflict every man must face—to look upon the end of their life with glory and honor, or to give credence to their baser longings, calling the Reaper to their own demise.

In this rich, harrowing tale of pride, deceit, honor, vengeance, and redemption, each individual must battle their inner turmoil, facing the sacrifices they have made before their unavoidable end in the land of the living.

But their last day in life is also their first day of death amidst the terrors of the underworld. Lord Master Death wants them all…and the real battle has only just begun.

“In the beginning. In the time before. When the Unity sat atop the throne in Paradise and reigned over the world of man below, all was good and fruitful. There was life without end for every spirit drawing breath within the embrace of the Unity. Things were as such for a time longer than memory itself. But such things end. The day of the Shattering came upon us all. Paradise above and the realm of man below were forever changed. The Unity became no more, and from it was born both Life and Death. On that day, it was decreed that all who lived must one day die. And we the Valkyrie, the children of Paradise, became its warriors. Our robes were replaced with armor, and hands once empty now grasp sword and shield. Our charge is to watch over those who dwell below in the realm of man. We are tasked with the guardianship of every spirit that yet holds life. We shall protect them until that life is at an end. Then it must leave the realm of man. For each spirit that meets its end with virtue and courage, we the Valkyrie shall fly to them and bid them welcome into the warmth of Paradise. For each spirit that meets its end with fear and wickedness, they shall call the Reaper, and I shall mourn them as they are cast into the cold realm filled with weeping and the gnashing of teeth.”

—Laurel, ArchValkyrie of the Thorn Crown

~Buy CALLING THE REAPER on Amazon, only 99c during the tour.

~Add it on Goodreads


Jason Pere is a born-and-raised New Englander. He always had a passion for the arts and creative storytelling. At the age of thirteen, Jason took up the craft of acting for film and theater. He pursued that interest for over a decade until refocusing his medium of expression into writing.

At first, Jason took a causal interest in writing, starting with poetry and journaling. Over time, he honed his direction and finally began writing larger works. In November of 2012, Jason self-published his first book, Modern Knighthood: Diary of a Warrior Poet.

Since then, Jason has continued writing on his own, mostly short stories and poetry. Calling the Reaper was his first experience committing to a full-length Fiction title.

In early 2015, Jason became affiliated with Collaborative Writing Challenge (CWC). Since then, he has joined many other writers on numerous collaborative projects. Jason is a regular contributor to CWC and is scheduled to have multiple pieces of his work appear in their publications throughout 2016.

You can find out more about Jason Pere’s involvement and publications in collaborative fiction here.

To connect with Jason, check him out on Facebook. Jason also writes fanfiction for Team Covenant on their Blog of the Pheonixborn, dedicated to the new game by Plaid Hat Games, ‘Ashes’. Go here to read Jason’s flash fiction work.

Find him on Goodreads

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One randomly chosen winner via rafflecopter will win a $50 Amazon/ gift card.

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Monday, October 10, 2016


by Gaja J. Kos

Enter the world where myth becomes reality, where long forgotten gods walk the earth, and where love forms bonds that cannot be broken even in the raging winds of battle.

Box set contains: The Dark Ones, The 24hourlies, Chased (novella)

Rose felt his muscles flex in graceful movement as he sprinted towards the courtyard that lay just beyond the alley. As soon as they left the narrowness of the walls, he leaped into the air and extended his wings, each bat taking them higher, until she could see the length of her street coming into full view below them. The simargl used the wind currents, leisurely taking her in a semi-circle around her neighborhood, before rising higher, his fur and his feathers shimmering in the unimpeded rays of sunlight.

The wind brushed against her skin as they gained speed; it would have been painful for a human, their less protected skin exposed to the elements like this, however, she welcomed the coolness it brought, knowing she still had the luxury of doing a half-shift at any time, should the strokes of fresh air become too aggressive for the tough, but nonetheless more sensitive human form.

The green landscape of Slovenia lay outstretched below them as the simargl kept a steady course, leaving the concrete circle of Ljubljana in the distance and taking them further southeast.




Gaja J. Kos is the international bestselling author of the urban fantasy series BLACK WEREWOLVES and the erotic paranormal romance novellas DROWNED. She is also a bilingual poet with 12 published poetry collections.

Gaja resides in Celje, Slovenia, with her husband and two Chinese Crested dogs.

Find her online:


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Gaja J. Kos will be awarding $30 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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Wednesday, October 5, 2016


by JW Troemner

Rosario Hernandez doesn't ask for much. She'd like to sleep on a bed instead of a sidewalk, to know where her next meal is coming from, and maybe, if she's really feeling optimistic, to get a girlfriend. More than anything, though, she wants her best friend Arkay to not murder anyone— because Arkay is a dragon, claws and all, and she has a penchant for vigilante justice. When Arkay's latest escapade goes sour, Rosario gets stuck with a stolen van and a cooler full of human organs. Now they're on the run, and it's not just the cops who want answers. The owner of the cooler is still out there, and they want to replace what they've lost— by any means necessary.

“What have ya got there?” Raimo asked when his inspection reached the back of the van.

“No clue,” I said, coming around front. “The guy we got this from said he was delivering something.”

“Like what, a case of beer?” He tipped the box back a few inches, and it made a wet gravelly sound. “It looks like a cooler.”

“Must have been some excellent beer,” I said, tapping the padlock that sealed the lid. “You don’t get ice boxes like this at Walmart.”

An excited grin crossed Raimo’s face. “Let’s find out, shall we? Give me a second.” He vanished into the garage and came out with what I could only describe as a murder weapon. “Watch your fingers, Hiccup.”

This wasn’t a friendly little set of bolt cutters. It had wicked blades nearly as long as “Isn’t that a bit excessive?” I asked.

“I know, right?” he squealed. “I just got her in. Isn’t she gorgeous? I’m going to call her Matilda.”

“Ooh, did Raimo get a new toy?” Arkay called from inside. “I wanna see!” She bounded out to join us, bits of moisture still dripping down from her damp hair.

The padlock could probably have been pulled off with a solid pull, but Raimo caught the remaining sliver of metal between Matilda’s jaws with an almost dainty twist. Another roar, and the pieces fell away.

“All right,” Arkay said, taking the lid with both hands. “Let’s see what we’ve got here.”

Matilda hit the floor with a solid thunk as Raimo stumbled back. “Jesus Christ!”

It took me a moment longer to make sense of the metallic, meaty smell and the sudden flash of red.

~Buy MARK OF THE DRAGON on Amazon.

-What inspired you to become a writer?

I’ve always been an avid reader, and I’ve always loved making up and telling stories. There was a ridiculously long period in middle school where I’d go everywhere with a notebook that had a pen tied to it, so I could spend every free moment writing. Eventually I realized that I had more passion for writing than I did for anything else.

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

That’s such a weird thing to think about, because the first several books in my series take place in the world (more or less) as we know it, in cities where I live or where I’ve spent a decent amount of time. All those neighborhoods full of foreclosures are based on the routes I walk every day, and the abandoned buildings and factories are based on places in my zip code. And walking through them, it isn’t all that hard to picture zombies and demons lurking in the shadows (or maybe a dragon making up its mind to come save you from the things that go bump in the night).

I think more than anything else, though, I’d like to attend one of Rosario’s all-monster potluck parties. Because seriously, where else are you going to see an encantado, a were-hyena, and a wendigo at the same party?

-Give us a fun or interesting fact you learned researching this book.

A lot of cultures have stories about a shapeshifter that lures people to their deaths, but my favorite is the legend of La Tunda from Colombia and Ecuador. The best part? No matter how well it can shapeshift the rest of its body, it can always be identified by its wooden leg, which is shaped like a milinillo… essentially a big stirring stick for beverages. It’s just such a particular detail, I can’t help but wonder where it came from originally.

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

Arkay and Rosario, totally. Rosario would be great for conversation, and Arkay would be the one dancing on the table with total strangers halfway through the evening.

-What do you enjoy reading in your free time?

I absolutely love it, though these days I actually get a lot of my fix from audiobooks because I can do that while running cooking or walking the dogs or running errands. These days I have a hard time sitting down to read without getting anxious about lost writing time.

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

I think straight-up mystery novels. I have nothing but respect for the people who write them, just from having to balance so many clues and false leads and fit it all into a regular structure. If I tried it, I think I’d spend the entire writing process stressing about whether I’d made the mystery too easy or altogether impossible to solve.


JW Troemner was born in Germany and immigrated to the United States, where she lives with her partner in a house full of pets. Most days she can be found gazing longingly at sinkholes and abandoned buildings.

Find her online:

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JW Troemner will be awarding $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway