Thursday, December 13, 2018

Blurb Blitz and Giveaway: Oasis by Bharat Krishnan

Welcome to my stop on the blurb blitz for the epic fantasy novel Oasis by Bharat Krishnan organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. On my stop, I have an excerpt for you. There's also a tour wide giveaway at the bottom of this post. Be sure to check out the other blogs participating in the blitz here. Enjoy!
Once, there was a truce. Desperaux controlled the west with magic, and Desire claimed the east with steel and science.

But now magic has disappeared, and the world has changed.

The kingdom of Desire will stop at nothing to maintain the new world order. On Juno’s wedding day, their Mengery soldiers came marching through the Nine desert to rip his world apart. Now he journeys east with his adopted brother, Trey, in search of revenge after the murder of his family. Along the way, the two face bandits and the magical creatures of the Nine. When they finally reach Desire, Juno and Trey will face something even deadlier – their own fears and ambitions.

This is a tale of brotherhood, a revenge story that will remind you that everything has a cost – a cost that will be paid to Desire and to the inner demons that govern us all.

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Excerpt:
Sand and sun dirtied anything that wasn’t already stained by the Nine, but Trey still tried to keep his hair clean. It was one of the few things he could control in this life, and he’d be damned if anyone at the orphanage said he wasn’t an individual. Soon after the owners of the orphanage died, he broke the lock into their bedroom and found a cooling unit with enough power left to experience a different world for five minutes. He hadn’t told anyone it still had power, not even Drea. He just cranked it up to full power one morning before anyone else had woken up and pretended he was a king.

As clean as Trey was, Sora was dirty. He stood 5’5 with mangy black hair, and was pudgy despite the fact he’d lived his entire life in the orphanage with virtually no food. Trey knew he was stealing rations from the younger kids. The second evidence came to light, Trey would throw Sora out. He was a thief, Trey thought, and beyond that he had hurt Drea. But for now, the two were the only ones who could keep this place running.

And so Trey and Sora would continue to work together because Trey believed in such a thing as obligation. Power shouldn’t be limitless; just because he and Sora were in charge, didn’t mean they should get to live better than everyone else. And Sora had his uses. Where he was strict, Sora was relaxed. Where he was hard, Sora was soft.
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About the Author:
Bharat Krishnan is a philanthropic consultant in Columbus, Ohio. After ten years in Democratic politics, he wrote a memoir about his life on the road as a political campaign manager and just released a fantasy novel called Oasis. He refers to himself as a professional storyteller and amateur cook.

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Giveaway:
Bharat Krishnan will be awarding a $15 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter after the tour. Be sure to visit and a leave a comment at a different blog participating in the blitz each day to increase your chance of winning. A list of participating blogs can be found here. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book Blitz and Giveaway: False Hope (False #2) by Meli Raine


Title: False Hope (False, #2)
Author: Meli Raine
Publication Date: December 10th 2018
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense
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She thinks she’s fooled me. But I’ve known all along.

Almost.

Lily is hiding something, a secret so big, she came out of a year-long coma and her first instinct was to lie.

Who does that? Someone who is afraid. No—not afraid.

Terrified. And it’s my job to take that fear away.

My partner and I have spent countless man-hours hunting down the cold-blooded killer who did this to her. Meanwhile, Lily’s spent her waking hours recovering. Getting stronger. Getting smarter.

Staying beautiful.

Never get involved emotionally. That’s my dictate. Never get attached.

When you realize you’re caught in a triangle, it turns out there is no exit.

Crossing a line is easy. Holding a line takes strength.

Lily’s shooter knows that she’s my weakness.

One I have to get back.

No matter what it takes.

Excerpt:
I’ve always been able to identify with Lily and her wounds to understand her healing process, to grasp the subtle and not-so-subtle psychological developments that help her to reconstruct a self. What I didn’t feel enough, though, was empathy.

Putting yourself in another person’s shoes isn’t just about imagining the body. We can create little movies inside our minds as mirror neurons give us the ability to imagine ourselves in someone else’s place.

Going deep emotionally, though, is a skill set you can’t develop. The building blocks have to be inherently in place. It’s like fast-twitch muscles that allow athletes to go from great to Olympic level. You have it or you don’t. And if you don’t, you’ll never develop it.

If you do, it’s up to you to find a way to optimize it.

As we sit here eating, I focus on the food. Never underestimate the power of macronutrients in reestablishing stability and empathy, though there’s no perfect ratio of protein to carbs to fats to give yourself an edge in that department.

I’m sitting here at the table, feeling all these feelings, when Lily taps my hand. She’s freshly showered, her hair hanging in loose, wet waves around her face. Soaked through, the strands of her hair hang longer than they do when dry, giving her an even more wholesome look.

And covering the scar in the back of her skull.

She smiles at me. “You’re a million miles away.”

“No, ma’am,” I tell her. “I’m right here, present and on duty.”

“Must have a nice job if duty involves raclette.” She looks at the hot stone in front of us with melted cheese and an assortment of meats and other foods.

I have to laugh. “It’s a tough job, but someone has to do it.”
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About the Author:
Meli Raine writes romantic suspense with hot bikers, intense undercover DEA agents, bad boys turned good, and Special Ops heroes — and the women who love them. Meli rode her first motorcycle when she was five years old, but she played in the ocean long before that. She lives in New England with her family.

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Cover Reveal and Giveaway: Kill Code by Luna Kayne

Today Luna Kayne and Rockstar Book Tours are revealing the cover and an exclusive content for KILL CODE, the first book in her new Romantic Suspense Series which releases on January 22, 2019! Check out the awesome cover and enter the giveaway!

On to the reveal! 
Title: KILL CODE
Author: Luna Kayne
Pub. Date: January 22, 2019
Publisher: Kayne Publishing
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 317
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HOW FAR WOULD YOU GO TO PROTECT THE ONES YOU LOVE? 

THEN 


Ten years ago, a covert government operation gone wrong separated Jack from Jessa, the girl he promised he would never leave.


NOW 
Jack's special forces team receives a tip, leading them to a remote farmhouse in search of a group of hackers led by the elusive Zane who work for the same person he holds responsible for Jessa’s death, ten years earlier. 

Past and present collide as what was once lost is now standing in front of him and appears to be working for the very evil he is trying to end. 

But is everything as it seems as secrets begin to unravel and pieces are put back in their proper places? 

And will the last missing piece, the answer to all of their problems, be found in time? 

*** Due to some dark and explicit themes in this book, it is recommended for mature audiences only. ***

* Kill Code is the first book in a trilogy.

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Excerpt:
Prologue: 10 years ago
- Jack -


“Wake up, Jack. We’re moving out. Your assignment is done.”


My commanding officer barks his orders out, jolting me awake. I open my eyes and try to focus as the dawn barely lights the room around me.


“What do you mean, done? Last night we were waiting on the search warrants. We had the whole family. It was going down... today.” Propping myself up on my elbows, I shake my head, trying to will myself to catch up.


Going over the last few days in my head, this doesn’t make sense. I’ve been on the ground with my unit for months now working special ops undercover with local law enforcement on a federal level, collecting whatever evidence we could and rounding up witnesses. Everything finally began to snowball together three days ago.


First one witness came forward, then a second, then the third came in with solid proof. With Port Thomas being a smaller city nestled near the coast in Oregon, law enforcement is always underfunded so they were thankful for the additional manpower, as long as we didn’t step on too many toes.


We had our mission in place for today, but this wasn’t how it was supposed to go.


“It blew up. Sh*t went down a few hours ago. Apparently, they knew we were coming. The Sparr family is gone. All of the evidence against them is now speculative. Four witnesses are dead. Another two are missing.” Then, as he opens his mouth, I see the hesitation in his eyes as his body physically braces for a fight.


“Jack.” My commander starts then stops, carefully considering his words with a frustrating pause. “It’s Jessa. Both her and her brother’s bodies are missing.”


“What do you mean, missing?” Then the weight of his words hits me. “Wait. What do you mean, bodies?” I bolt out of bed onto shaky legs as I feel my world begin to crumble piece by piece.


He chose his words carefully. She isn’t missing.

Her body is missing.


“Her family was in a car accident just outside of town at the bridge. It looks like they went over the cliff. Her parents’ bodies were recovered from the ravine along with the car. We don’t know yet if it’s related but three other people from the company are dead as well. It was a quick job.” He glances around my area as I feel panic begin to flow through my veins.
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About the Author:

Luna Kayne is a multi-published author in the romance and erotica genres. Her creative works include novels, novelettes and a book of poetry and prose.


Within the romance genre, her books and short stories are also listed under suspense, paranormal, BDSM and contemporary.


The woman behind Luna Kayne’s pen name has been writing for online publications since 2005. She writes from her home on an acreage near Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.


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Giveaway:

3 winners will win an eBook of KILL CODE, International.

Book Excerpt and Giveaway: Christmas Secrets by Donna Hatch

A stolen Christmas kiss leaves them bewildered and breathless.

A charming rogue-turned-vicar, Will wants to prove that he left his rakish days behind him, but an accidental kiss changes all his plans. His secret could bring them together...or divide them forever.

Holly has two Christmas wishes this year; finally earn her mother's approval by gaining the notice of a handsome earl, and learn the identity of the stranger who gave her a heart-shattering kiss...even if that stranger is the resident Christmas ghost.

This scene takes place when everyone on Christmas Day takes a turn kissing their spouse or sweetheart underneath the mistletoe ball. Now the group turn to Will and Holly, who have only known each other a few days, and start goading them into sharing a mistletoe kiss...

“Come now, don’t be shy,” her sister called. “It’s tradition.”

The others called out encouragements.

Apology edged into Will’s uncertain expression. “Do you mind?”

Holly’s palms grew sweaty inside her gloves, and her smile probably came out wobbly. “Who are we to go against tradition?” Did she sound desperate in her desire to kiss him?

Will held out a hand. She placed hers in it and walked at his side to the kissing ball. They stood, hand in hand, facing each other. His neck cloth shifted as he swallowed. He leaned in. Her heart stumbled and her knees shook. She closed her eyes. Aching, she lifted her face. His cinnamon-spiced breath warmed her mouth.

He kissed her cheek.

Stunned, she opened her eyes. The watching guests groaned and some chuckled.

“No, no, that won’t do at all,” Joseph’s voice rang out. “Give her a proper kiss.”

Will froze. That intensity she occasionally saw in him returned. “Holly.” He swallowed again but instead of nervousness, a hunger that sent a flurry of shivers through her overtook his expression. “May I?”

She nodded. It didn’t matter if he saw how much she wanted this, wanted him. Let him know. Let the whole world know.

He touched her chin, lifted it, and leaned in. Again, she closed her eyes. This time his lips touched hers, pliant and unbelievably gentle. Heat exploded at the contact and shot through her all the way down to her tingling toes. Different from her mystery kiss, this one sang of affection and respect and a deep longing to be accepted. Sweeter, more chaste, more filled with caring, Will’s kiss brought her a level of joy she’d never known. All the world faded away leaving Will and the power of his affection, his touch, his kiss. Every moment of her life seemed to have been designed to bring her to this single, perfect moment of bliss and wholeness.

“Ahem.” Father cleared his throat conspicuously.

Will pulled away all too quickly. A tiny sound of distress caught in Holly’s throat. It was over too soon. But oh, what a glorious kiss!
"I can always count on Donna Hatch to weave a delightful tale with vivid characters and swoony kisses. Christmas Secrets does not disappoint." ~ Reading is my Super Power

"Filled with delightful holiday traditions, growing attraction between Holly and one of the guests, a mother set on a desirable match for her daughter, and a few heart-melting kisses, this novella is the perfect book to cuddle up with this holiday season." ~ Remembrancy Book Reviews

"It's been some time since an author made me believe their characters like this, but Donna Hatch writes it so beautifully I was quickly drawn into the idyllic past." ~ Silver Wood Sketches Book Reviews
Donna Hatch is the award-winning author of the best-selling “Rogue Hearts Series” and is published in sweet Regency romance and fantasy. Her professional memberships include Romance Writers of America (RWA)and American Night Writers Association (ANWA). A sought-after workshop presenter, she juggles freelance editing, multiple volunteer positions, not to mention her six children (seven, counting her husband), and still manages to make time to write. A native of Arizona who recently relocated to the Pacific Northwest, she and her husband of over twenty years are living proof that there really is a happily ever after.

$25 Amazon Gift Code or $25 in PayPal Cash

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner may be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, BookBub, Instagram, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. This giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader & Clean Wholesome Romance and is sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

Book Sale: Yours By Christmas (Park City Firefighter Romance) by Jennifer Youngblood

A recovering alcoholic turned firefighter, a mysterious woman with a secret, and the Christmas miracle that just might save them both.

Beckett Bradshaw knows what it’s like to be on top of the world and then to come crashing down to the lowest form of human existence, living on the streets. It has taken a huge amount of hard work and self control to get where he is today. He’s content with his job as a firefighter and so incredibly grateful for the miraculous recovery of his young daughter.

When a mysterious old lady shows up at the fire station and makes a prophecy that Beckett will find love by Christmas, he doesn’t believe it. Beckett doesn’t dare pray for the desires of his heart for fear that he’s used up all of his miracles.

Then, Beckett meets the beautiful and vivacious Ava Lawrence and starts to hope that maybe he really can find love. Beckett is hesitant to tell Ava about his checkered past for fear that she won’t want him. However, Ava has a few secrets of her own that could destroy everything Beckett has built.

Will a Christmas miracle be enough to bind two lonely hearts together or will the scars of the past prevent Beckett and Ava from finding the lasting love they most desire?

Excerpt:
It was the kind of cold that would freeze a person’s toes and fingers off. In another time and place, Beckett wouldn’t have spent more than thirty minutes outside. Tonight, however, he was grateful for the cold. It sank through the holes of his worn shoes, moving up his legs and torso like morphine, numbing his aching heart. The cold snuffed out the fire raging in his head—the voice that screamed of his failures and how any path to redemption was forever barred. He trudged through the snow, oblivious to the trash littering the sidewalk or the bars covering the windows of the aging buildings. The sights and stench of the streets would’ve horrified him before, when he was donning two-thousand-dollar suits and driving a Lexus to his high-rise office in the center of downtown Salt Lake City. Now, it was as commonplace as breathing. The frigid wind picked up. He pulled his thin coat tighter around him as he tucked his chin into his neck and plodded forward.

Normally, Beckett’s senses were dulled to the point where he hardly remembered the life he lived before. Alcohol was the great cure-all. If he drank enough of it, he could hardly remember his own name. Today, however, was different. Today was Jasmine’s birthday. She was turning seven today. Beckett didn’t want to think about Jasmine with her happy, rosy cheeks and cocoa-colored ringlets. The trusting look in her deep brown eyes. The lilt in her voice when she called him daddy. Jasmine wanted a pink Barbie cake with sparkles. Tears pressed against his eyes as he swallowed. Unbidden scenes from the accident flashed before his eyes, the guilt knotting his gut.

It had been a normal day. Pressures at the office were increasing. Beckett was always behind. Nothing he did was enough to satisfy his bulldog boss. Before darting out of his office to pick up Jasmine from her dance class, he’d taken a few swigs out of the flask he kept hidden beneath a stack of files in his bottom desk drawer. One minute he was driving, the road a blur, Jasmine chattering about a new dance she’d learned. The next minute, everything changed. Beckett felt the blunt force of the crash the same instant he heard the sickening sound of crunching metal. Then came the worst—Jasmine’s terrified screams that gave way to intermittent whimpers. He’d called 911, screaming into the phone. It seemed to take forever before the wail of the sirens pierced the night air.

A few hours later, in a sterile hospital waiting room, a grim-faced doctor would deliver the blow. Jasmine’s ankle had been crushed. It would require multiple surgeries, and there was a chance she’d never walk again. Melinda’s face had crumpled, tears streaming down her cheeks. As Beckett went to hug her, she pushed him away, condemnation burning in her eyes. “This is all your fault!” she spat.

“Please, Melinda.” His voice had cracked with desperation. “I—I’m sorry. I never meant—” He reached for her again.

She got up in his face. “I can smell the alcohol on your breath.” For an instant, Beckett saw something in her eyes—a sliver of the love they’d once shared. Before he could blink, however, her eyes went flatter than dull pennies as she turned her back to him and walked away.

It was then that he’d known, he was dead to her. He loosened his silk tie and threw it into the garbage on his way out of the hospital.

That was six months ago.

He wet his dry lips, the thirst for a drink rising in him like a greedy vulture demanding to be satisfied. He paused and leaned against the side of a building, removing the bottle from inside his coat. Beckett took a long swig, appreciating how the liquid burned down his throat. Another couple of drinks helped ease the pain. The snow was falling harder, large blobs coating everything in white. Cars moved along the streets like cautious snails, trying to avoid contact. The world felt still, like he was in one of those snow globes Jasmine loved. Beckett’s breath pushed out a warm mist against the air as he continued to his destination.

Fifteen minutes later, he went in through the backdoor of a shelter. A middle-aged, portly man with a tapered salt and pepper beard was sitting behind a metal desk, chewing on a pencil as he stared at the screen of his laptop. When he saw Beckett, he waved in recognition as he stood, pulling his pants over his belly. “Hey, Blanket Man. I wondered what time you’d show up here.” He went to a nearby counter and picked up a stack of blankets, depositing them in Beckett’s arms. “It’s a cold one tonight. The temperature’s falling into the single digits.”

“Yes.”

“I’m sure there’ll be plenty of people who can use these blankets. Some ladies from a local church dropped them off today. It’s mighty kind of you to deliver them. After you get done passing these out, there are plenty more.”

Beckett nodded. This was how the conversation always went, with Scotty making small talk and Beckett throwing in a few short answers and nods. Scotty didn’t seem to mind that Beckett didn’t want to talk. He was always pleasant, and he looked Beckett in the eye when he spoke to him. Most people didn’t. The homeless moved through the city like faceless ghosts, scavenging what they could to survive.

“Oh, by the way, I reserved you a spot at the shelter tonight. It’s too cold to be outside.”

“Thank you.” Beckett’s hands ached from the cold. He’d had a pair of gloves once, but they were long gone.

“Tell everyone you see that they need to get indoors.” Scotty’s mouth turned down in a frown as he pulled at his beard. “This is the kind of weather that kills people.”

If only Beckett could be so lucky. Death was preferable to his miserable existence. Several times, he’d looked up at the tops of the buildings, thinking how easy it would be to just jump and end it all. He didn’t know what was keeping him here. Maybe it was cowardice. Even now, he craved life and the bottle. Maybe it was Jasmine. His heart clutched as he pushed the thoughts away. He no longer had a wife or daughter. He was a nobody.

With the blankets in hand, Beckett went out the door. After the warmth of the shelter, the night felt colder. He suppressed a shiver, forcing himself to embrace the cold as his feet worked through the snow. His first stop was a group of four men at a nearby park. They were sitting on the ground, huddled close together, their backs resting against a waist-high concrete wall.

“It’s Blanket Man,” an older man named Beaker exclaimed in a hoarse voice. No one went by their real names on the streets. They used names that fit the person’s personality or features. Beaker had a large, pitted nose. He held up a gnarly hand. “Join the party,” he said glibly. “It’s a little cold, but what can ya do?” He laughed at his own joke.

Slim Jim, sitting next to him, barked out a raspy smoker laugh, his thin shoulders shaking. “Yep, we’re having us a party.” He raised a hopeful eye to Beckett. “Got anything to drink?”

“Or a cigarette?” a young man with greasy hair and glassy eyes asked.

A pang shot through Beckett. The kid was a newcomer. He couldn’t be more than eighteen or nineteen years old. His face was gaunt, his eyes ringed in hollow circles. It seemed such a shame for him to be here, strung out on drugs. Even as the thought ran through his mind, Beckett laughed inwardly. He, of all people, had no room to judge. No one on the streets would ever imagine that he used to be an executive at one of the most prestigious financial advisory firms in Salt Lake. Out here, he was a scruffy drunk who delivered blankets to those who didn’t have the presence of mind to seek shelter when the temperatures plummeted. He didn’t really know why he felt compelled to go out night after night, delivering blankets. Maybe it was a form of atonement for his past sins. All he knew was that he couldn’t seem to rest until the blankets were handed out.

“Nope, sorry. I’m all out of both,” Beckett lied, “but I do come bearing gifts.” No way was he sharing his booze. He’d spent a full day cleaning trash out of a yard to earn the money to buy this bottle. He handed them each a blanket. “It’s supposed to be down in the single digits tonight,” he said, repeating Scotty’s words. “It might be wise to get to a shelter.” The cold seeped into his bones, making him feel sluggish.

Beaker waved a hand. “Nah, too crowded. We’ll be all right.”

The young man started singing a song about them being all right.

“Suit yourselves.” Beckett moved on to the next stop, passing out more blankets. He suspected that a few of the people were so far gone in their minds that they didn’t even realize they were cold. One man was holding an animated conversation with an imaginary person, laughing one second and shouting curses the next. Maybe Beckett would end up that way—not having a clue who he even was. When the blankets were gone he returned to the shelter, intent on making one more round before hunkering down for the night.

“Hey,” Scotty said, “you’re back.”

Beckett gave a curt nod of acknowledgment and went to the counter, picking up an armful of blankets.

Scotty touched his beard. “Uh, Beckett, before you head back out, there’s someone here to see you.”

Beckett frowned, hearing his own name. Not once, in all the times he’d come to this shelter to pick up blankets, had Scotty called him by his real name. Up until now, Beckett hadn’t even realized that Scotty knew his name. Suspicion stirred inside him. “Who is it?” he demanded. It had better not be his former boss! Jack Bisson had come lurking around once, about a month after Beckett had thrown in the towel. He urged Beckett to check himself into a rehab center, saying he’d even pay for the treatment. “Think of your wife and daughter,” Jack had said. “With Jasmine’s ankle in such bad shape, she needs you now more than ever.” Beckett laughed in his face, telling the pompous man in no uncertain terms exactly what he thought of him. Had Jack shown him an ounce of compassion when Beckett was working, instead of riding his case 24/7, Beckett might not have turned to alcohol. Then, he never would’ve been drinking the night he picked Jasmine up from her dance class, and he wouldn’t have had the car accident that shattered her ankle. Beckett balled his fist, squeezing the blankets. He’d refrained from punching Jack Bisson in the face the last time he showed up. This time, Bisson wouldn’t be so lucky. “Where’s Bisson?” he growled.

Scotty frowned. “I’m not sure who that is.” He scooted back his chair and stood, his eyes resting on the blankets in Beckett’s arms. “Maybe you should put those down and follow me.”

Reluctantly, Beckett complied. When they entered the large common room, Beckett scanned the crowd of people, packed like sardines into every available inch of floor space. When he saw them across the room, his breath froze in his throat. He couldn’t do it! His eyes narrowed as he spun around to Scotty. “What is this?”

Scotty held up a hand. “Your wife and daughter have gone to great lengths to find you. The least you can do is hear them out.” He lowered his voice. “I know your history, Beckett. That you’re a good man. You had a career, a wonderful family. That man is still in there. You just have to find him.”

Beckett let out a harsh laugh. “If I were a good man, my daughter wouldn’t be in a wheelchair.” Tears rose in his eyes as he cleared his throat and swallowed. He’d lost count of the number of times he’d dreamed of seeing Jasmine over the past few months. A hot anger coursed through his veins. Melinda had no right to bring Jasmine here. Maybe she wanted Jasmine to see firsthand how far her dad had fallen. Everything in him wanted to turn around and flee as far from here as he could get.

“Daddy!” Jasmine’s face lit up as she waved.

Too late to run. Beckett sighed in resignation as he forced his feet to move forward. When he reached them, he stood there awkwardly, at a loss for words. Melinda’s pinched face said it all—that he was an embarrassment. Melinda had always been concerned about social status and the image they portrayed to the world. He could only imagine what she must think of his ragged clothes, scraggly beard, grimy fingernails, his unwashed stench. He was a walking skeleton, a shadow of his former self.

Jasmine was beaming. She seemed oblivious to the change in him. “I’ve missed you so much.” She held out her hands for him to hug her. Beckett’s feet stayed rooted to the floor. He wanted to hug her, but life on the streets had hardened him to the point where personal contact seemed foreign. Finally, he patted her hand instead. She was soft, untouched by the ugliness of the streets.

“Good to see you, pretty girl.” His eyes settled on the cast, visible beneath her sweat pants. He hated himself in that moment, wished he could disappear into nothing. How dare Melinda bring Jasmine here! He wanted Jasmine to remember him as he was before. Not now, consumed by his vice. He glared at Melinda. “What’re you doing here?” Melinda looked thinner than he remembered, her face drawn and pale. It seemed like it had been another life when he’d loved her.

Melinda lifted her chin, a protective hand going over Jasmine’s shoulder. “I came here because of Jazzie,” she said stiffly. “It was her birthday wish.”

Jasmine gave him a searching look. “Come home with us, Daddy.” Her voice cracked. “Please.”

“For her sake,” Melinda added. “You need help.” Her jaw tightened. “It’s bad enough that Jasmine’s going through all the pain and suffering of her ankle. Must she lose her father too?” The words came out in short, angry bursts. She gave him a hard, resentful look. “You’re being selfish.”

Tears bubbled in Jasmine’s eyes, her lower lip trembling. “Please, Daddy, come home. We miss you.”

Selfish! Loser! Drunk! Beckett’s head felt like it was splitting in two. Oh, how he wished he could relive that dreadful night of the accident, that he could go back and nip the drinking in the bud before it turned into a hideous monster. He thought of the bottle beneath his coat, the need for a drink overwhelming. He hated this—loathed his weakness. Tears pooled in his eyes. Beckett Bradshaw was an illusion. There was nothing left of that man except pain and regret. “I’m sorry,” he uttered as he fled.

The last thing he heard before he darted out the door into the cold was Jazzie’s anguished cry. “Daddy!”

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Blog Tour and Giveaway: Big City Villain by Penelope Ray

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for the YA superheroes novel Big City Villain by Penelope Ray. This blog tour was organized by YA Bound Book Tours. On my stop, I have a teaser for you. There's also a tour wide giveaway at the bottom of this post. Be sure to check out the rest of the blogs participating in the blog tour for more exclusive content by clicking here. Enjoy!
Title: Big City Villain
Author: Penelope Ray
Genre: YA Superheroes
Release Date: September 28th 2018
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Seventeen-year-old Coal Black takes being the bad boy to a whole new level. A super level. 

Known as the city’s terrifying super villain, Headphones, Coal works hard to keep his bad reputation intact despite being banned from using his powers. But things soon take a drastic turn when a deadly vigilante promises to destroy his whole world and his brother.

When his secrets are threatened, how far will Coal go to keep everything from unraveling? And with betrayal around every corner, he just might not make it out alive.

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Book Trailer:
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Teaser:
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About the Author:
In her natural habitat, Penelope Ray can be found with headphones on and furiously typing away on her laptop, completely oblivious to what's going on around her except for her attention-demanding cats. Though writing about superheroes and their crazy adventures is her current obsession, she started off as a quiet romance author, but a year ago she found Wattpad and let her imagination run wild. It hasn't come back yet. And that's when she discovered me, Coal Black. Her hero, her dashing prince charming, the wind in her sails, and her motivation to keep writing. Happiest in the rain and snow surrounded by cats, Penelope writes her next book while trying not to overthink her author bio or how she's going to write the ending to the story.

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Giveaway:
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Book Blitz and Giveaway: Captive Rebel (The Allegiance #1) by Erin McDermott

Title: Captive Rebel (The Allegiance #1)
Author: Erin McDermott
Publication Date: July 2nd 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult
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In a world where Greek Gods rule over the Allegiance, Marylyn O’Conner struggles to survive.

Marylyn is a rebel, forced to do the rebellion’s bidding until an unforgiving family debt is paid. A pawn in the war against the Allegiance, she is obligated to become a rebel spy, or her family will suffer.

When word spreads that an Allegiant Prince, Ariston, has escaped rebel captivity vowing to hunt down rebel spies, Marylyn realizes her only hope is to escape Allegiant territory.

While on the run, Ariston captures Marylyn, preventing her from any chance of returning home. Desperate, she knows she needs to escape her alluring captor or risk the safety of her family.

But Marylyn can’t keep herself from falling for the mysterious prince as she finds that he can empathize with her troublesome past – a past no ally has understood before.

Excerpt:
"Marylyn O'Conner," I heard Fanny's husky voice from behind me. Turning in my cotton covered chair, I looked her way. A smug smile was plastered across her porcelain face. "Have you heard the news?" she breathed, already knowing the answer. Her sense of entitlement, being King Deimos' daughter, was overpowering.

I gave her a fake smile. I was never a fan of her, her lush red hair, her beautiful clothes, or her perfect figure. Perhaps I was a bit envious, could you blame me?

"Oh yes. I'm so excited your brother is returning!" No, I was not thrilled about his return in the slightest. "He should arrive by next week, correct?"

"Sooner," she winked, shooting me a devious smile.

Masking my panic, I managed to feign indifference and asked, "Oh, how soon?" Hopefully my question appeared relaxed enough.

A dark haze shadowed her emerald eyes. She grinned, but her smile sent shivers down my spine. Her grin never reached her eyes. I knew that grin all too well, because it was the exact one I had been giving to everyone the last several months. My smiles, the ones that never reached my eyes, were fabricated to match the lie I lived.

Seeing a mirror of my own face in hers terrified me. Tonight, I feared Fanny knew something I did not. "Soon, I promise," Her sinister smile remained unwavering as she turned and glided away.

In that moment I knew Ian, Charles, and I were in trouble.
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About the Author:
Erin McDermott was born and raised in New Jersey. She graduated college with a bachelors degree in History. If she's not in her room writing, you may find somewhere on the Jersey Shore with her family. She has been writing stories since 3rd grade. It was not until after experiencing the fast-paced life New York City had to offer that she decided to finally take the plunge and finish her first book, CAPTIVE REBEL (The Allegiance, Book 1).

During her years in college she expressed a deep interest in Greek Mythology, which she incorporates into The Allegiance Series. She is incredibly grateful to her family for supporting her throughout the trials and tribulations of the independent publishing process.

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Author Interview:
When did you first begin writing?
I began writing in 3rd grade while watching my brother's Little League games. I would just sit in a corner and write. The books I wrote were inspired by "Little House on the Prairie" by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I would sit and write about my life in the houses I lived in, just as she wrote about her life in her diaries.


When did you decide to first publish a book?
I always loved writing, but the idea of publishing a book seemed like an impossible dream. I never thought I'd finish a book, never mind actually publish something. It wasn't until I was working a job that I really didn't enjoy that I decided to set to my dreams and complete a book. Then my first book was born, Captive Rebel.


What advice would you give to those who are trying to write a book?
I once read somewhere that writing is like building a sand castle. The first draft is you filling a sandbox with, well, sand! It's messy, it's unstructured, but it's something to work with. Knowing the first draft is going to be sloppy is the only way to finish the book. Once you finish a book your goal seems more realistic and the edits will come on easy. The edits are you building the sand castle in that scenario, by the way.


What inspired you to write Captive Rebel?
Actually, I had a dream. It was a vivid dream and I needed to get it down on paper. In one night I wrote 10,000 words. Then, I didn't look at that story again. Not until after my job in New York City when I finally decided to begin pursuing my dreams.
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