Friday, November 30, 2018

Blog Tour and Giveaway - Mewranters: Attack of the Sea Monster by Kachi Ugo

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for the YA Fantasy novel Mewranters: Attack of the Sea Monster by Kachi Ugo organized by YA Bound Book Tours. On my stop, I have an excerpt of the first chapter for you. Be sure to check out the giveaway at the end of this post. You can follow the rest of the tour here for reviews and other promo posts.
Mewranters: Attack of the Sea Monster uniquely blends adventure with an engaging fast-paced writing style to present readers with an action-packed story of wits, wisdom, and sheer force of will.

Every Mew in the country is out to kill Perry, and the sea monster is calling him out to the sea. Therefore, he must quickly learn why every Mew is threatened by the existence of an eagle Mew if he is to stand a chance at saving his parents and killing the monster. On the day of his initiation, he shifts into a huge Golden Eagle. However, this is a bad thing since no eagle Mew makes it past the age of twelve. To complicate his life, his shifting into an eagle Mew has reawakened the sea monster. A tentative partnership is formed between the different clans. But when Perry Johnson realizes that this partnership could mean the death of his parents, he has a decision to make.

With every Mew in the country out to kill him, and the sea monster calling him out to the sea, Perry must quickly learn why every Mew is threatened by the existence of an eagle Mew if he is to stand a chance at saving his parents and killing the monster. If he fails, it may very well be the end of his family… and the rest of the world. This fast-paced story, with its intriguing plot and original fantastical world, keeps every zoo-going, animal-loving kid wanting more as they follow Perry’s adventure.



Perry Johnson awoke with a feeling of dread. He knew his time had come, and he felt he was going to fail. He had never been good at anything. Not sports, not hanging out with friends, not even school. He wasn’t failing in school, but he wasn’t passing either. He was average. In everything. Nothing special. That kind of sucked. But what could he do? It was who he was. It was his destiny.

Even as he sat trembling on his bed, he figured today was going to end badly. Badly for him. He was certain he wasn’t going to be good enough. He had known about the ritual for some time since Richard. He was four then. One week after they had celebrated Richard’s twelfth birthday, the family moved to their cliff house in Nevada. Perry didn’t know what Richard did because he wasn’t allowed to watch, but whatever Richard had done, he had been awesome. Four years later, Jane and Jake’s turn came. He didn’t watch, again, but he knew they were great. Now his time had come. One week after they had celebrated his twelfth birthday, they had moved here. It was his turn, but Perry already knew what the outcome would be.

Perry knew he wasn’t good enough. Whatever this family ritual was, he was going to fail it. Perry had always gotten by being average. Somehow, he suspected that this time average wouldn’t be good enough. That’s why he was afraid. The ritual was important—like family-tradition important. That much he knew. He loved his sister so much. He couldn’t bear the thought of losing her, but that didn’t stop these thoughts from barraging his mind. Average meant failure, and failure was his one-way ticket out of the family.

“Perry!” His mother’s voice came to him from somewhere in the cabin. “Breakfast is ready.”

Perry had already gotten used to his small room. Still, it pressed in on him from all sides. He had no appetite for food. Yet, he knew he must eat. It might very well be his last meal as Perry, son of Johnson.

Perry jumped off the bed. He landed on the floorboards with a crouch, his legs almost giving in. He had on a red shirt and blue jeans. He looked in the mirror on his dresser. All he saw was a small, scrawny preteen. He gulped. His heart was already pounding, though he kept his breathing steady.

The door to his room opened. Lisa, his dear sister, came in. She had a warm smile on her face and a small broom in her hands.

“Mother told me to do your chores,” Lisa said, mild irritation on her face.

“She did?” Now his breathing became erratic. “Why?”

Lisa frowned at the way he breathed. She shrugged and said, “Don’t know. Something about a big day for you. I heard her talking with Richard.”

Perry struggled to calm himself. He swallowed hard. “Richie’s here?”

“Mmm-Hmm,” Lisa replied, already sweeping the floor. She was eleven years old. Perry might not be here to watch her do the ritual next year, but he knew she would excel. She was unlike him. Success came naturally to her, the same way being average came naturally to him. It was who they were. Maybe, if he could get his parents to understand this, they wouldn’t kick him out of the family when he botched the family ritual.

Spurred by impulse and a humongous amount of nervous energy, Perry hugged his sister and left the room. He could never hate his sister. Not even when his parents praised her and derided him. He couldn’t even be jealous of her.

Perry walked the narrow corridor, which opened to the small sitting room. His heart lurched. Richard, Jane, and Jake were all present. Richard sat at the table with Jake, while Jane sat on a couch. Mother wasn’t in the room. But there was food on the table, which Richard and Jake ate. There was an extra plate; his, Perry concluded. He hesitated in the low-light corridor. Usually, when Richard came from Maine, or Jake and Jane, their family’s inseparable twins, came from school in California, Perry felt exuberant. But now he could feel his heart sink. He didn’t want them to see him fail. He didn’t want to eat, but he knew he must.

A hand touched his shoulder, and he jerked away, frightened. He was in the sitting room now, in the open, exposed. At first, he was startled. Everyone seemed happy to see him. He felt like a spotlight was upon him. Richard, Jake, and Jane talked excitedly, all at the same time, but he couldn’t pick out their words. All he was conscious of was the ferocity with which his heart hammered in his chest. He looked at where he had been. His mother stood in the doorway, staring at him, concerned. The room fell quiet.

His mother pointed at the table. “Eat,” she rumbled.

Perry nodded in submission, sat, and ate. He forced the cheese pie into his mouth, down his throat. Richard watched him, silent, but Jake talked. Talked about the weather. Talked about school. Talked about birds. Richard gave him a sharp look when he mentioned birds, and he quickly changed the topic. Talked about family traditions.

Jake only talked this much when he was antsy. He probably knew Perry’s chances of success were thin and feared for him. Perry felt like crying. Why did he have to be such a loser?

Mother roamed the house. She too was nervous. Jane gave nippy glances at him and his food; they flickered from impatience to anxiety. Father wasn’t in sight. But he too, no doubt, thought he was no good. Perry fought the urge to wail out in distress and continued battling with his cheese pie and milkshake.

The air seemed to thicken as he pushed it through his lungs. Perry didn’t get to the last slice of the crusty cream pie before Father came into the sitting room.

He looked first at Perry. His weathered face carried deep lines on his forehead. In these deep lines, strips of sweat lay. His blue T-shirt had a dark V that reached from his neck. The dark stain was perspiration. Then, his gaze shifted to Mother. “They are ready for him,” he said in a solemn tone.

It was as if a giant bell rang in Perry’s mind. He knew he was finished. Why remain there? He jumped out of his chair and was about to run for his room. But his mother stood, akimbo, in his path, with a look of concern on her face. She didn’t seem to have noticed his intentions. He squashed the urge to run and kept hidden those intentions.

Richard, Jake, and Jane rose to their feet, a sudden reverence around their motions. They stood still, allowing Mother to guide him towards the door with one hand on his shoulder. Father gave way, and Perry walked into the hot desert.

Three strange-looking men stood by the metal interlocking fence. One was old and the other two were young. But they both looked like they were from an ancient Indian tribe. The old man sported a white shirt, a white headband, and a white feather sticking up by his left ear. His intense gaze drilled holes into Perry’s eyes. Perry looked away. Beyond the fence, less than ten feet away, was an edge. Father had told him that the edge was fifty stories above the desert floor.

Father had also told him that anyone who fell off the cliff would splatter into a million bloody pieces.

Mother’s grip tightened on Perry’s shoulder. She pushed him gently towards the strange men. Father and the rest followed from behind.

As Perry glanced around the yard, he realized there was only one car beside the house. How had these men, including Richard and the twins, gotten to the cabin? There wasn’t a highway for miles. What was going on?

Perry caught the look in Mother’s side glances to Father. She was uncertain. Unsure. Like she knew this was his last day as her son. But, she couldn’t call off the ritual now that these strange men were involved.

When they were still a distance from the three men, they halted. His mother crouched beside him, held his shoulders with both hands, and fixed him with her most dangerous stare. Whatever she said now, he could never disobey; not if he didn’t want to suffer severe consequences.

“Those men are here to test you,” his mother said with a brief glance at the old man. “He’s the chief of our clan. Do whatever he tells you, and it will be all right. Fail, and you might lose that which is precious to you.”

Perry’s dread heightened. Lose Lisa?

“Mother?” Perry croaked. “I’m scared.”

His mother’s fierce gaze melted that instant. She looked at his heaving chest for a moment. Then she turned to face his father. Her knees gave out beneath her.

“He’s not ready,” she muttered to him, tears in her eyes.

Father picked up Mother from the ground and held her in his arms. “There’s nothing we can do about that,” he whispered back to her. “It’s either now or never.”

“What if he fails?” Mother said, glancing at Perry, who now stood alone.

His father’s eyes gripped his. “Then it’s over for him.” He said this without an iota of emotion.

Mother squeezed her eyes shut as tears fell to her cheek. When she opened her eyes, she fixed a cold stare on him. “Do as I say.”

Perry turned away from his family. The three strange men remained passive and silent as he approached them. The sun scorched his head. Baked sand found its way into his jeans. He looked over his shoulder one last time. Mother and Father weren’t looking. They were locked in an embrace. Richard and the twins were farther behind, staring at him with glassy eyes, squinting in the sun. The house stood behind them, the only human structure for as far as the eyes could see. It was small, misshapen, a construction of roofing sheets. It had been his family’s cabin for years, since before he was born. He was about to lose it. He was about to lose everything.

“Perry Johnson,” the old man said. His voice was unusually strong considering his age; he had wrinkles all over his face.

Perry stood before the man. “Yes, Sir,” he replied, looking up at the man, into the sun. The man placed a hand on his shoulder and led him towards the gate in the fence. 

“Do you know what this is all about, Perry?” he asked.

Perry shook his head, too scared to talk.

The man made a sound, an amusing sound. “Surely, you must have an inkling as to what purpose you have been brought here.”

“A family ritual.” Perry’s voice was lost in the wind, but the man must have heard because he nodded contemplatively.

“Go on,” he said. They were through the gate and headed for the edge of the cliff.

“A test to determine if I’m worthy to be a member of this family,” Perry said. A sudden alarm came to his mind as they approached the edge. The desert floor spread from underneath the cliff: a barren, dry land. Great winds moved sand around in disorganized sweeps. “Sir, why are we going towards the edge of the cliff?”

“Does it bother you?”

“It’s dangerous, Sir. My father has forbidden me to cross the fence,” Perry said, trying to look over his shoulder at his parents. But, the old man prevented him. Perry tried to wriggle himself out of the man’s grip, but the man clamped tighter.

“Not to birds, it’s not,” the old man said, pausing at the very edge of the cliff.

Perry felt queasy standing fifty stories above the ground. He shut his eyes and craned his neck away from the fall. “I’m not a bird, Sir,” he cried out in desperation.

“Not yet,” the man said, and shoved him over the cliff.

Perry fell.

Fell towards his death.

He hurtled.

Hurtled to splatter into a million bloody pieces.

He screamed, flapped, and beat the air. But, he fell on. The floor—his death—rushed up to meet him. His heart fluttered ferociously. A flame of fear erupted around his body. Ten seconds to his death. A strange feeling came over him, unlike his earlier feeling of apprehension. Feathers sprung from his skin. His legs turned to talons. A different kind of fear overtook his mind. More feathers shot out of his skin.

Five seconds to his death.

Perry flapped his hands faster, as if he could fly. The wind caught on his hands—no—his wings! He flapped again and glided away from the cliff wall. He was no longer falling. He was gliding, two yards above the ground! He cried out, terrified, but what came forth from his sharp beak was a piercing whistle that rang through the desert.

He tried to grab the sand before crashing into the ground. He tried to push his body off the sand with his hands, but they weren’t strong enough because they were wings. Panic stabbed at Perry’s heart. He flapped off the ground, rising five feet into the air. The sand lodged in his skin felt like tiny pinpricks, irritating him. He landed on talons, shaking his body vigorously.

I can’t be a bird! he thought. I CAN’T BE A BIRD!

Wait, maybe I succeeded this time! Did I pass the test?!

He looked to the cliff. It was so far away. Yet he could clearly see his parents, Richard, the twins, and the three strange men. He searched their faces for recognition or approval, but it was not happy surprise or awe that he saw. It was terror. His heart sank. He was a failure again. What else was new?

Before his eyes, they turned into huge birds. Huger than normal birds, but not different in other regards. Mother was a white owl. Father was a blue harrier. Richard was a grey hawk. The twins were bright yellow buzzards. The old man that had tried to kill him was a white osprey. Perry blinked, not sure what he was seeing. They soared high above the desert towards him.

When they got to him, they circled, keeping their distance.

He glanced down at his own body. He was a golden eagle. He spread his wings and they each stretched over a yard from his chest. The circling birds scampered away at the revelation of his full form, seemingly terrified. Perry nestled his wings back into his body and sat on the ground, dropping his head. He felt ashamed of being an eagle. He had failed his parents, his family. He had broken his family’s tradition. He deserved to be expelled from the fold.

After a while, he heard his mother speak. Her voice was firm in his mind. “Perry, rise into the air. We’re going to teach you to handle your aerial form.

Even though he heard her voice in his mind, he knew it was a command, not a request. He leaped into the air, spreading his wings full length. The air seemed to cling to his form, pushing him upwards. He didn’t need to flap. He shot to the clouds, his shame melting into excitement. His family and the osprey followed behind, instructing him.
About the Author:
Kachi Ugo's whole life has revolved around writing. When he was twelve, while his friends still flipped through picture books and comics, he took an interest in thick, picture-less “story books” that opened him up to a whole new world of possibilities and adventures. A decade later, he writes those same books himself. Kachi Ugo is an avid supporter of YA Fantasy. For him, writing is a passion. He relishes the power it gives him to create worlds of his own where anything and everything is possible.

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Book Tour and Giveaway: Holiday Hijinks (Halliday Theater #1) by Katherine Moore

Holiday Hijinks
Halliday Theater #1
Katherine Moore

Cozy Holiday Romance
It’s Christmas, and this year Emily Halliday is trying something new at the struggling revival movie theater she runs for her great-grandmother. After all, how many times can you show It’s a Wonderful Life?

Emily was hoping to make a little profit on “Holiday Hijinks,” her “counter-programming Christmas” event. What she never expected—plot twist—is that an unexpected guest will turn her own life into a romantic comedy.

Holiday Hijinks is the first in a new series of cozy romances set in the small Pacific Northwest town of Silver Birch, Washington. A short read (15K) for a busy time, Holiday Hijinks introduces a whole new cast of characters while bringing back “cameos” from the “Meredith Manor Hotel” books, which are also set in Silver Birch.

If you love movies and food and romance as cozy as flannel jammies, Holiday Hijinks is the Christmas read for you.

**Only .99 cents!!**

Born in Washington, D.C., Katherine Moore now lives in a small Pacific Northwest town very much like Silver Birch. She has worked as a food writer, a caterer, and a movie extra as well as a freelance lifestyle reporter and staff writer for magazines in Honolulu, Los Angeles, and Richmond, Virginia.

Let the Feasting Begin
Katherine Moore

I mostly grew up in Virginia, so Christmas meant visits to my maternal grandparents’ house where my mother and aunts turned the occasion into a foodie version of the Olympics. Mickey looks strong coming into the sides with her corn pudding but contenders Helen and Mabel could offer her a real challenge with their bacon-wrapped Brussels sprouts and green beans almandine.

In most families, everyone would divide up the dishes and one person would bring the sweet potatoes and one person would bring the mashed potatoes and so on. Amateurs, the women of the Moore family would scoff. And so my mother would bring grated sweet potato pudding, Aunt Mabel would bring the candied yams, and Aunt Helen would offer sweet potato timbales with crushed cornflakes on the outside and marshmallows hidden inside like sweet lava.

It was the same with the other side dishes—especially for potatoes. There were always mashed potatoes, potatoes roasted with root vegetables until crackly and delicious, and boiled red potatoes with butter and parsley. (The day after Christmas morning, my mother always sliced up the leftover boiled potatoes and fried them with onions for breakfast. I was convinced she made extra just so there would be plenty for breakfast.)

The one thing everyone agreed on was pie. No one really liked mincemeat pie or pumpkin pie so the majority ruled and the dessert was pecan pie. I loved pecan pie, so I was fine going along with everyone. But I also love pumpkin pie, just not enough to buy a whole pie for myself.

Imagine my delight when I discovered the joys of baking things in a mug. This Pumpkin Pie for One became one of my favorite solo holiday indulgences.

Pumpkin Pie For One
1 microwave-safe mug (10 ounces or larger)

For crust:
1 tsp. butter, preferably unsalted
2-3 small gingersnap cookies, crushed fine

Melt the butter in the bottom of the mug. (Use the low power setting)

Stir in the crushed gingersnaps and press into the bottom of the mug to make a crust.

For filling:
1 egg
1 Tbsp. whole milk
2 Tbsp. light brown sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
½ tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. nutmeg
¼ tsp. ginger (May substitute 1 tsp. of pumpkin pie spice for the cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger)

Mix the milk, egg, brown sugar, pumpkin, and spices together in a small bowl.

Pour “pie filling” into the mug over the crust.

Put the mug on a microwave-safe plate and nuke at full power for 2 ½ to 5 minutes. (Cooking times vary—check on it after two minutes and remove the “pie” when a knife comes out clean.)

Follow the tour HERE for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!

Book Review: The Meadows (Legacy of Darkness Book 1) by London Clarke

A decades-old murder. A strange, blood-thirsty cult. And a house full of spirits.

It was supposed to be a new beginning, a fresh start in the Shenandoah Valley, where Scarlett’s memories weren’t riddled with drug addiction and rehab. But after purchasing an abandoned house with a checkered past in the hopes of transforming it into a luxury bed and breakfast, strange things start to happen. Disturbing voices and noises interrupt her new life. Strangers appear, bearing cryptic warnings. A tunnel is discovered underneath the house—one historically used for a local cult’s rituals. After several of Scarlett’s guests are hospitalized, she realizes she is being targeted by violent spirits.

Driven to the edge of despair, Scarlett vows to fight back—but she has no idea what she’s really battling. And her nightmare is just beginning…

The Meadows is a gripping supernatural thriller in which the monsters may be vampires, demons, or flesh and blood. It is a nightmare that will make you believe it could easily happen to you.

GoodreadsAmazon * Barnes & NobleBooks2Read * Kobo
My Review:
I loved London Clarke's first book, Wildfell, so I was definitely looking forward to her next book, The Meadows. I loved this book! It was so spooky and creepy which are my favorite types of books.

The pacing for The Meadows was perfect. Not once did I feel like this book slowed down where I was becoming bored. It is definitely a fast paced thriller, but it's not too fast paced in the sense that you have no clue what just happened.

The world building and plot are done extremely well. London Clarke does such an excellent job of describing what's going on, that I actually felt like I was staying at Asphodel House, the spooky house where all the paranormal things happen. The Meadows felt so real, I would actually stay awake a little longer after reading some of it because I was so spooked! It was easy to envision a cult like The Colony (as named in The Meadows) that believe themselves to be vampires who use willing and unwilling sacrifices. I would be more surprised if a cult like that didn't exist!

I loved all the characters in The Meadows! Each character was written exceptionally well. I loved how real and raw Scarlett was. It was nice to read about a character who was flawed. Scarlett suffered with a drug and alcohol problem in the past, and it was interesting to read about her struggle with it in present day and the choices she made. Yes, she did fall off the wagon after coming to Asphodel House, but I couldn't blame her. I'd be stressed out and scared too! Scarlett isn't perfect, and that's what I loved about her. She feels like a real human being, not some happily ever after book character. She's a little selfish, but who isn't in real life? Scarlett was such a great character. Even the supporting characters were great. I would have liked Stella, Scarlett's best friend, to be featured more, but that's only a minor thing. Stella was such a great friend to Scarlett, and I admired her loyalty to Scarlett. I loved Ryan, and it was interesting to read the back story between him and Scarlett. Hunter was also a very interesting character. I enjoyed his back story. I don't want to go into detail with him because I feel like there's a minor plot twist with that.

Trigger warnings for The Meadows include demons, the occult, cults, violence, murder, death, alcohol use, prescription pill abuse, ghosts, some swearing (although nothing too bad), and sex scenes (nothing graphic though).

Overall, The Meadows is a very chilling, dark, and spooky read. It is such a great book though. The characters, the setting, the plot were all written very well. I am definitely looking forward to the next book in the Legacy of Darkness series. I would recommend The Meadows by London Clarke to everyone aged 17+ especially if you love being creeped out. This one definitely kept me awake with how creepy it was, and if a book can do that, it is definitely a good one!

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Book Blitz and Giveaway: Forgotten Ghosts (Vesik Book 8) by Eric R. Asher

Title: Forgotten Ghosts (Vesik Book 8)
Author: Eric R. Asher
Publication Date: November 13th 2018
Genres: Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal
A necromancer’s fear. A family’s fate. An ancient spirit with a new alliance.

I shouldn’t have told myself things couldn’t get any worse. They did.

As Nixie struggles to unite the water witches, the Fae king discovers a spy in his ranks. We’re forced to split our focus and our powers between the unrest in Faerie and the rising tensions in Falias. When Nudd’s latest gambit puts humanity’s most dangerous weapons into his hands, we can’t let anything stand in our way. We’ll need help from new contacts and trusted allies if we hope to stop the Fae king’s madness.

But the award for worst timing in history goes to an old friend: Vicky.

“We’ll stay,” Sam said. “But if you need us, you call. Frank’s doing PT with some of the privates. He’ll be here too if you need him. You know he will.”

I paused. “Who’s running the shop? I thought Frank was there today.”

“Aideen is,” Foster said. “She’s back from the Obsidian Inn. Business still hasn’t picked up as much as we’d hoped since the battle with the water witches, so she’s comfortable running things by herself.”

“Good. Good.” I nodded to myself as if I was silently trying to pump myself up for going to Vicky’s house. I suppose that’s exactly what I was doing.

“But we’re clear?” I asked, turning to Park. “No shooting the dragon?”

“You see,” he said, “this is exactly the kind of thing I’m talking about. I’ve been having a relatively normal day, but now I have to tell my men not to shoot at the dragon. A dragon!”

I nodded sagely. “The dragon’s quite friendly. But if you have any collectible Barbies around, I’d probably hide them.”

Park muttered under his breath. “No shooting the Barbie-eating dragon.”

Sam and Foster chuckled as I backed out of the room and closed the door behind me.

About the Author:
Eric is a former bookseller, cellist, and comic seller currently living in Saint Louis, Missouri. A lifelong enthusiast of books, music, toys, and games, he discovered a love for the written word after being dragged to the library by his parents at a young age. When he is not writing, you can usually find him reading, gaming, or buried beneath a small avalanche of Transformers.

Author Interview:
I listened to a lot of instrumentals and soundtracks while writing Forgotten Ghosts. The nice thing is it lets me switch between dictation and typing without an issue.

Audiomachine - Ashes of Time
Audiomachine - Decimus
Audiomachine - Tangled Earth
Audiomachine - Hope in Light
Audiomachine - Kingbreaker
Deathly Hallows Part 2 - Lily's Theme
Deathly Hallows Part 2 - Underworld
Deathly Hallows Part 2 - Neville
Deathly Hallows Part 2 - Statues
Deathly Hallows Part 2 - Battlefield
The Two Towers - The Black Gate is Closed
The Two Towers - Evenstar

Release Day Blitz and Giveaway: My Brother's Bride by Rachael Anderson

Abigail Nash leads a lonely existence. Her mother died giving birth to her, her father’s business dealings took him away more often than not, and her ailing great-aunt, unable to provide much in the way of companionship, was a lack-luster guardian at best. So when her dear friends offered to launch her into London society, it appeared Abby’s life was taking a turn for the better, with suitors and social engagements aplenty. When she marries a proclaimed darling of the ton, it seems she will at last settle into the life of her dreams.

But appearances aren’t always what they seem, and dreams often become disappointments.

Just months into her marriage, Abby finds herself widowed, penniless, increasing, and determined to never hope again. But when her late husband’s brother, the Earl of Brigston, attempts to thaw the numbness surrounding her heart, Abby must decide if she has it in her to risk another chance at happiness, knowing the odds are not in her favor.

When Brigston entered the kitchen, Abby’s back was partially to him, so she didn’t immediately see him. Her brow was furrowed in concentration as she whipped something in a bowl. She paused to lift the spoon, only to frown at the white liquid dripping from it.

“Are you certain this will thicken into a cream?” she asked.

A flash of irritation crossed Monsieur Roch's face until he spotted Morgan and seemed to think better of it. He managed a patient tone in his accented French. “It takes time, my lady.”

Morgan stifled a chuckle as Abby examined another spoonful of the liquid. “I’ve been whipping it for several minutes, but it doesn’t seem even a little thicker to me. Have I forgotten to add something?”

“No,” said the cook in clipped tones.

Morgan stepped forward and leaned in close. “If your arm is tired—”

Abby jumped, and what liquid remained on the spoon splattered across Morgan’s face. She spun around, her eyes growing wide with horror when she saw what she’d done.

He wiped a dab from his nose and tasted it. “A little more sugar, perhaps?”

“Brigston! I’m so dreadfully sorry.” She dropped the spoon into the bowl and grabbed a rag from a nearby wash basin, dabbing it across his face.

“Not that rag!” cried the cook. “It was only just used to mop the floors.”

Abby dropped it as though it had burned her, and Morgan tried not to cringe at the thought of filthy water coating his face.

Monsieur Roch retrieved a clean rag and held it out to him, appearing apologetic. He flicked another irritated glance at Abby before returning to his work.

As Morgan wiped the cream from his face, he wondered what Abby would do or say next. Offer another fumbled apology? Make her excuses and flee? Pretend the incident never happened and return to her labors? He never knew what to expect from her.

Her face scarlet, she cleared her throat and lifted her adorably determined chin. “You are most welcome, my lord.”

He raised a brow. “For what, my lady?”

“I have heard that cream does wonders for one’s complexion, and it seems the rumors are correct. Your skin appears much . . . creamier.”

Praise for My Brother's Bride:
I found this book to be completely unexpected. I have read all the historical novels by this author and they have all been fun and delightful reads and even though this book had those elements as well, it was definitely more emotional than I was expecting... I loved Abby’s quiet strength and Morgan’s protectiveness. These two were great together. ~ Melanie

My to-read list is long but Rachael is one author I always bump to the top and put all other books on hold for. She never disappoints so it's no surprise that this is another top-notch offering from Rachael. I loved these characters and cheered for them as they overcame obstacles and circumstances that tried to keep them apart. My Brother's Bride is an awesome and needed addition to the clean romance genre. So many authors pump out books so fast that often I find the quality of their work is lacking. Since I read for entertainment I'm able to forgive a lot and typically just overlook the shortcomings that are prevalent with so many books in this genre. Thankfully that is not the case with Rachael's books. I'm grateful for the time she takes to ensure she offers her readers quality books with original storylines that won't disappoint. ~ Kathy
$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an 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 will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

Promo Blitz: The Era of Lanterns and Bells by Ann Tinkham

 photo The Era of Lanterns and Bells_zps36uqnt7h.jpg
Title: The Era of Lanterns and Bells
Author: Ann Tinkham
Genre: Fiction, Literature
Published: September 2017
Publisher: Napili Press
In The Era of Lanterns and Bells, a lighthouse is haunted by the memory of lighthouse keepers, a train operator is forever changed by a subway suicide, a journalist befriends a homeless virtuoso, an orca trainer believes she's a whale, an aerialist runs away from the circus, and a Golden Gate Bridge jumper saves lives with fortune cookies. An obese woman is rescued from being a shut-in, a woman discovers that her favorite childhood pond is polluted and cancer-causing, a woman falls in love with a bipolar man in Jamaica, and an arborist writes love letters from trees. These quirky and darkly comic stories entertain while posing essential questions about truth, compassion, and humanity.

About the Author:
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Ann Tinkham is a writer based in Boulder, Colorado. She is an anti-social butterfly, pop-culturalist, virtual philosopher, ecstatic dancer, political and java junkie. When she's not tinkering with words, she's seeking adventures. Ann has talked her way out of an abduction and talked her way into the halls of the United Nations. She hitchhiked up a mountain in Switzerland and worked her way down the corporate ladder. Ann has flown on a trapeze and traded on the black market in Russia. She cycles up steep canyons, hikes to glacial lakes and mountain peaks, and blazes her own ski trails. As soon as she amasses a fortune, she plans to buy an island and hopes she won't be voted off her own island. Her fiction and essays have appeared in All Things Girl, Apt, Denver Syntax, Edifice Wrecked, Foliate Oak, Hiss Quarterly, Lily Literary Review, Short Story Library, Slow Trains, Stone Table Review, Synchronized Chaos, The Adirondack Review, The Battered Suitcase, The Citron Review, The Literary Review, Toasted Cheese, Wild Violet, Word Riot, and others. Ann's essay, "The Tree of Hearts" was nominated for a Pushcart Prize and her story, "Afraid of the Rain" was nominated for Sundress's Best of the Net Anthology.

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RABT Book Tours & PR

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Book Blitz and Giveaway - Death & Damages: A Mystery and Thriller Collection by Various Authors

Title: Death & Damages: A Mystery and Thriller Collection
Publication Date: November 27th 2018
Genres: Adult, Mystery, Thriller


Danger lurks around every corner!

Courageous cops, adventurous agents, and daring detectives hunt for the answers to stop crimes by vicious killers.

But what if the damage is already done?

Inside these pages you’ll find 24 adventures full of captivating conundrums, hair-raising homicides, and suspenseful secrets from today’s USA Today & Wall Street Journal bestselling and award-winning authors.

Become a private investigator yourself. Inspect plots of deadly assassins, cold-blooded killers, and bone-chilling suspense inside the pages of DEATH AND DAMAGES, an enthralling mystery and thriller boxed set.

Fans of Lee Child, James Patterson, Gillian Flynn, Paula Hawkins, and John Grisham will devour these puzzling mysteries and gripping thrillers.

Included stories from several USA Today and NYT Bestselling authors:
Patricia Loofbourrow
Pauline Creeden
John Ling
Alexa Padgett
Siera London
Shereen Vedam
Deborah Shlian
Kelly Hashway
Maggie Carpenter
Tiana Laveen
Angela Sanders
Karen M. Bryson
Aime Austin
Lisa B. Thomas
Fiona Quinn
Kerry J. Donovan
Jane Blythe
Dan Alatorre
Muffy Wilson
Dariel Raye
Ja’Nese Dixon
Terry Keys
Bill Hargenrader
Judith Lucci
Maria Grazia Swan

Excerpt from Suicide Blonde by Karen M. Bryson:
When I left Florida as a wide-eyed twenty-year-old, I vowed never to set foot in the Sunshine State again. I was determined to do whatever it took to make it in Hollywood. I wanted to be better than where I came from.

Now here I am right back where I started twenty-five years ago.

Apparently that old saying is true: you can take the girl out of the south, but you can’t take the south out of the girl.

As I pull my rental car into the Swamp Angel Trailer Park all kinds of memories flash through my head. None of them positive. This is the place where my sister, Layla, and I grew up. The place where she apparently still lived. The place I couldn’t wait to escape from.

I rented a Jeep for one week. I don’t plan on extending the rental. My plan is to get my sister’s affairs in order and get the hell out of Florida for good.

While most of this booming bayside city has experienced a major revitalization, entering the trailer park is like stepping back in time. It’s barely changed in the last quarter century. It’s still a festering sore in the armpit of the city.

Swamp Angel Trailer Park is right in the heart of Suitcase City. It’s a seedy part of town a few blocks west of Big State University. The rundown section of town was so named because many of its residents are so transient, they never bother to unpack their bags. It’s the kind of place where nobody knows your name and people like it that way.

When Layla’s father died, she inherited the trailer we grew up in. I’d be surprised if it’s worth forty thousand. I can make that in a month renting out my beach house in Malibu.

As I pull the Jeep up to the front of the trailer, I notice there aren’t any other vehicles parked outside. Layla was a graduate student at Big State University. We’re a few miles from campus, not really close enough to walk. I wonder how she got to class without a car.

Seeing the crime tape over the front door feels surreal. You’d think after playing a detective on television for twenty years I’d be used to it. But when it’s stuck across the door of your childhood home it feels a lot different.

I don’t have a key to her place, but I do remember where the spare keys were hidden. One was underneath a garden gnome in a patch of weeds that was supposed to be the front yard. The other was under the upper left corner of the tacky straw welcome mat outside the front door.

The straw welcome mat must have bitten the dust because it’s been replaced with an even cheaper looking Wipe Your Paws fake grass mat. With no spare key underneath.

Fortunately, the sun-cracked garden gnome produces the goods. The key is old and a little rusty, but it still manages to unlock the trailer door.

My plan is to sell anything that’s worth selling. Donate what’s still usable to a thrift store. Then toss whatever remains into the trash.

Armed with heavy duty plastic bags and a pair of rubber gloves, I charge into the trailer ready for action.