Buzzing Cover Reveal: Lurking in the Shadows from CHBB Publishing #Giveaway

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About the Book

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Title: Lurking in the Shadows
Edited by: Jaidis Shaw
To Be Published: June 28th, 2016
Publisher: Crushing Hearts and Black Butterfly Publishing
Genre: Horror, Fantasy, Paranormal

Synopsis

Embrace the darkness.

Murderous entities, haunted houses, screaming banshees, and sympathetic necromancers are just a few of the chilling things you’ll encounter in this anthology. Follow our authors into the shadows … if you dare.

Stories featured in this anthology include the following:

“An Empty Building” by Jacqueline E. Smith

“Bump in the Night, Inc” by Melody Black

“Dorcha Scath” by Liz Butcher

“Living Nightmare” by Savannah Rohleder

“Lizzie” by Tania Hagan

“On Two Lane Roads” by Shelly Schulz

“Release” by E.M. Fitch

“Revenant” by Stacey Jaine McIntosh

“Scream for the Night” by Gina A. Watson

“Too Young To Kill” by Lily Luchesi

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About the Publisher

CHBB Where Dreams Take Flight

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Buzzing Book: Outback Promise by Maggie Bolitho #Giveaway #Interview

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About the Book

Outback Promise

Title: Outback Promise

Author: Maggie Bolitho

Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction

Published: November 1st, 2015

Publisher: HarperCollins Australia – Impulse Imprint

Age Recommendation: 18+

Synopsis

Tragedy. Betrayal. Hope.

After losing their only child, Roslyn and Grady Balfour’s lives are destroyed, shattering their perfect marriage. When Ros discovers Grady’s infidelity, it sets their love on a destructive downward spiral. Grady hopes that three months together camping will rekindle what was lost so long ago.

Attempting to repair their broken marriage, Ros and Grady set out on a journey of self-discovery and redemption deep into the Australian outback. Packing resentment and bitterness along with them on their quest, the couple struggles with what they’ve lost. Forced to battle the challenges of the other travelers along with the dangers of the harsh outback, their only chance for survival lies in facing the secrets of the past. Will Ros and Grady find a way to hold onto each other when everything else has fallen apart?

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About the Author

Maggie Bolitho

A free range child, Maggie Bolitho grew up on an island in Canada’s Pacific Northwest. She spent her formative years constructing alternative universes, flying under the radar and wishing for 20/20 vision.

She set out to see the world shortly after her 17th birthday. Eventually she met and fell in love with a wild colonial boy. After five years of futile resistance, she moved to Melbourne, Australia and married him. In 2007, Maggie and her husband made Canada their permanent home. They now live in a leafy suburb on that island where Maggie grew up and neither of them wishes to be anywhere else, except for when memories of the sunburnt country beckon.

While living Down Under, she started writing fiction and explored the outback. In 2015 HarperCollins Australia published her novel Outback Promise. Her debut novel Lockdown (YA) was published in 2014. Some of her adult short stories appear in different anthologies in the US, Canada, and Australia. She has had poetry published in Quills Canadian Poetry magazine.

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Interview

Describe your relationship with a good book.

A good book is as addictive as a drug to me. I obsess over it. I want it surgically attached to me, so carrying it around as ebook on my iPhone library is a perfect solution. I read it every chance I get, standing in line ups, on public transportation, and in waiting rooms. Once I’m finished, I go back over my favourite parts, maybe even copy-type some of them in a grateful attempt to channel the author’s gift. In the meantime, I pester my friends to read it so we can discuss it.

When did you first start writing and what was the first thing that you wrote that you were proud of?

In Grade 7 I fell in love with ancient Greek and Roman history. I read every book on those cultures that in the small school library. Then I wrote a story about a captured Greek slave who dies as he labors in a Roman senator’s fields. It was published in the junior high yearbook which back then was about eight amateur pages, more like a newsletter than a bound keepsake. All the same, I was thrilled with this tiny success.

Please describe your work ethic as an author.

#1 rule – Make time for writing. Make time because waiting to find time is like waiting to find a unicorn. #2 rule – do all the aspects of writing, even the ones that are less fun: reading, writing, researching, revising, improving skills, networking, and social media. #3 rule – manage social media time so it doesn’t suck the life out of the day. #4 rule – never give up.

How do you balance your work as an author with the other aspects of your life?

I set deadlines and priorities and make sure I’m always flexible enough to just to do something different for the sheer impulsive joy of it.

Why did you write this book?

I was on an outback walkabout, dazzled by the dramatic landscapes when a story started to form in my head. At Devils Marbles (the area known to the traditional owners as Karlu Karlu) I encountered notes about the Aboriginal dreamings. They told of the Kwerreympe spirits that live in the caves under the rocks and lure children away from their families:

“The spirits say ‘Follow me’ and [a child] can’t go back. It happened like that for my cousin. He disappeared. The old people made a big ceremony singing the ground and the rocks to make them let my cousin come back. We’ve lost that song now. We’ve got no song to bring children back.”

The thought of a lost child was planted and years later I found Ros, Grady, and their beloved son, Cadel.

What experiences from your past do you find yourself drawing upon repeatedly for inspiration in your work?

The seven basic plots in storytelling are: overcoming the monster, rags to riches, the quest, voyage and return, comedy, tragedy, and rebirth. All of these are woven through my life either literally or figuratively. I select from the most compelling events, depending on what my story needs. I try to avoid repeating the experiences I draw from.

What do you hope to accomplish in the next five years, both as an author and in your outside life?

As an author I hope to see my next four YA novels published. They are all drafted and in varying states of readiness.

In my personal life I hope I finally unpack the boxes in the basement that moved in with me two years ago and haven’t been opened since.

Since you are a storyteller, please tell one good lie about yourself.

Only one? Here are three scenarios and only one is true. You decide which is fact and which is fiction:

  • Years ago, I hitchhiked across Canada with a girlfriend. It wasn’t until we arrived in Toronto after two weeks of sharing beds and sleeping bags that she declared her love for me. I was quite naive and hadn’t picked up on her vibes at all. Our friendship was strained for a while but it survived.
  • I am ¼ Coast Salish First Nations. My grandfather married his housekeeper who was a Salish woman, although back then the coastal people didn’t claim their heritage with pride. She died when my father was only sixteen and I never met her. There were no records of her clan in any of my father’s papers when he passed. We think he may have burned them in shame.
  • In my teens, a friend and I borrowed another friend’s van to go to a party. We had no insurance or registration papers when we were pulled over by police. Both of us were carrying small baggies of weed. The cop looked at RS’s driver’s licence and sent us on our way. My friend swore it was his telepathic message to the cop, telling him to let us go, that stopped us from being busted.

Curious? I can be contacted through my website, www.maggiebolitho.com, for the answer.

Excerpt

Suzanne refilled both our glasses. How many bottles of wine had we shared over the years? I eased my glass to my lips and emptied half of it.

‘Does it have to be camping?’

[…] she set her fork down and cleared her throat. ‘Okay, you can stop the act now – what I really want to know is, when’s the big divorce?’

It took every bit of my willpower to bite back the first questions that sprang into my head. How did you find out? What do you know? I speared a small green leaf and chewed slowly, half-smiling at her. My pulse raced as I tried to imagine what she’d heard and how.

She drained her glass of chardy while her attention lit on a surfer half her age strutting past on the beach below. When I didn’t answer she continued, ‘You know – the two of you. Sleeping in a tent. Nothing around but dirt, dingos, and drongos. How long’s that going to last?’

[…]

‘Not so fast. There is some good in all of this.’

‘Like what?’

‘Grady and I are planning and doing things together. I can’t remember the last time we shared a project or worked to the same goal.’

‘I guess this trip is better than him buying a sports car and taking on a mistress.’ She gestured for the bill with a wiggle of her fingers. ‘Now that’s a laugh. Grady, the most loyal man ever to draw breath, having an affair. There’s one thing you’ll never have to worry about!’

I put on my sunglasses and ignored the lies that hung between us. Six years earlier Suzanne knew every detail about me, large and small. She had been at my side when I miscarried my first child and again when Cadel was born. While we rejoiced at the birth of my beautiful baby, she consoled me over the emergency hysterectomy I’d undergone.

‘One healthy baby will bring you unlimited joy. Quality trumps quantity,’ she said and kissed Cadel’s tiny fists.

Now I couldn’t even tell her how a stray voice at the Supershow had almost stopped my heart. She didn’t know that far from being the most loyal man on earth, Grady had inflicted fresh pain when the old wounds weren’t fully healed. She also didn’t know how close we’d come to bankruptcy when he had managed our finances. She saw what the outside world was meant to see: two people, affectionate and loyal, the public face of our marriage. I needed a holiday in ways she could never guess.

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Buzzing Cover Reveal: Chasing Rabbits by Erin Bedford #Giveaway

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About the Book

Chasing Rabbits

Title: Chasing Rabbits
Author: Erin Bedford
To Be Published: June 2nd, 2016
Genre: Supernatural Fantasy
Age Recommendation: 16+

Synopsis

Alice was wrong – Wonderland wasn’t so wonderful after all.

Kat never expected to be back in her hometown, but when house sitting turns into a mad rabbit chase, Kat finds herself with a whole new set of problems.

A two-headed bird with a Game of Thrones obsession, a party full of tea addicts, and a Cheshire Cat who could seduce the pants off her grandma? And if the citizens weren’t bad enough their prince was off his rocker.

This wasn’t your run of the mill Wonderland. This was the Fae world, where rules are rules, and some things are exactly as they seem.

About the Author

Erin Bedford

Erin Bedford is a new fantasy romance author, a computer programmer by day, and a hobby hoarder.

Creating fantastical worlds has always been a secret passion of hers and she couldn’t imagine writing any story without some kind of lovey-dovey or smexy goodness in it.

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Excerpt

The feeling of his mouth on mine made me lightheaded in the best of ways. In an effort to stay afloat, my hands gripped on to his vest, pulling him closer. I admit I was more than a little bit disappointed when my movement caused him to pull away.

My chest heaved as I tried to regain my breathing. He leaned his forehead against mine, his own breath coming out in pants. At least I wasn’t the only one affected.

“What was that for?”

A crackling sound broke our little moment up and Chess took a step back. The billowing fog from the forest leaked in under the wardrobe door. All thoughts of Chess’s kiss fled my mind as terror began to overwhelm me. I didn’t want to know what lie behind that door.

“You need to go now, Kat.” He ushered me to the mirror before turning back to the door.

“Wait!” I tugged on his arm. “What about you?”

“Who me?” Chess gave a coy smile that didn’t reach his heated eyes.

“I’m just a cat.”

“Are you mad? Come with us!” My voice became desperate as the door banged open and then there was silence.

The light from the bedroom was gone. Inside the door lay only darkness. It was the kind of darkness you were afraid to look into for fear of someone looking back. I knew I didn’t want that darkness looking at me.

Chess turned to me once again, brushing his lips against my ear. My eyes were focused so much on the approaching darkness that I almost didn’t hear what he said. I frowned in confusion, but before I could question him he shoved me through the mirror’s surface.

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Buzzing Book: In Her Eyes by Wesley Banks #Interview #Giveaway

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About the Book

In Her Eyes

Title: In Her Eyes

Author: Wesley Banks

Published: March 14th, 2016

Genre: Sport Romance

Content Warning: PG-13

Synopsis

When Ben Wilder is given a second chance he focuses on the one thing he’s always been good at: running. After walking on to the University of Florida Track and Field team he begins to quickly move up the national rankings, paving a path towards the NCAA Championships. Everything is going the way he planned, until the day he bumps into Casey Taylor.

New to Gainesville, and focused on her first year out of medical school, Casey is initially hesitant to let Ben into her life. The truth is she’s worried about letting a guy near the one thing she loves most: her daughter, Emma. After one fun and fateful night Casey can no longer bury her feelings behind these excuses, and takes a chance on a guy she is slowly falling for.

Casey’s relationship with Ben starts to gradually build into a love that she has never felt before. But more importantly, Emma has taken a particular liking to Ben. As they all spend more time together Ben is forced to confront painful memories when he starts to notice something hauntingly familiar about Emma.

A local journalist soon uncovers the secret of Ben’s past their lives begin to converge on a single promise that Ben Wilder has long since made: to never give up…no matter what.

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About the Author

Wesley Banks

Wesley Banks was born in 1983 and grew up on the west coast of Florida. He graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Civil Engineering. After spending over 7 years building movable bridges from Florida to Washington he decided to focus on his true passion: writing.

Wesley recently moved from Florida to Oregon to get back to the great outdoors that he loves so much. He lives with his wife Lindsey, and his two dogs Linkin and Story. Most of his time these days is spent writing, with as much rock climbing, hiking, or skiing as they can fit in.

Wesley’s debut novel, “Hope In Every Raindrop,” was released May of 2015.

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Interview

Describe your relationship with a good book.
Honestly there’s nothing quite like a good book. There are two things that really pull me in: story and setting. If the author nails both of those, then I honestly get sad when I finish the book. I remember reading The Name of the Wind a few years ago and thinking, “Well, I can never read another book, because nothing will ever match that story.”

When did you first start writing and what was the first thing that you wrote that you were proud of?
I wrote my first story in 4th grade, but it probably wasn’t until college that I really started writing regularly. I’m probably most proud of this book of poetry that I wrote called, Beginnings.

Please describe your work ethic as an author.
I like to think I have a really good balance between regiment and flow. I research and outline my stories ahead of time, but as I get into them the characters end up making decisions on their own that ultimately shape the story.
More specific to work ethic, I typically write six days a week, for about three hours each day.

How do you balance your work as an author with the other aspects of your life?
I’m fortunate enough to write in the morning and work on my web company in the afternoon. I do tend to drop everything I’m working on when we travel, which is something my wife and I love to do.

Why did you write this book?
I wrote In Her Eyes because I’ve always been inspired by Steve Prefontaine, and wanted to interweave the thrill of running with a love story.

What experiences from your past do you find yourself drawing upon repeatedly for inspiration in your work?
Even though it doesn’t show through much in In Her Eyes, I draw a lot of inspiration from my dogs, which is evident in my first book, and my current work.

What do you hope to accomplish in the next five years, both as an author and in your outside life?
That’s a tough question, mainly because I feel like there’s a lot I want to accomplish. I think my general answer is freedom. I’d like my books to do well enough that I have the freedom to write or travel, or both.

Since you are a storyteller, please tell one good lie about yourself.
During our trip to Alaska in 2010, I got separated from our ATV group in Denali National Park. We were just leaving the largest natural gravel deposits in the world. I remember because I can still clearly hear the rocks crunch underneath the tires, as the others left.
That’s when I saw him. He wasn’t supposed to be in this area, no animals were. His amber eyes burned into mine, and his tail bounced slightly as his lithe body moved towards mine. I was about fifteen feet from my four-wheeler, but I didn’t move. I couldn’t.
His steps were completely silent as he continued towards me. His light gait carried him to within inches of me, before he finally stopped. Before I knew what I was doing my hands were moving across his deep black fur.
That was the day I pet a wolf in the wild.

Excerpt

Ben was tired, but he was excited when he woke up on Monday morning. It was Casey’s day off and Coach had given the team the week off, minus a team meeting this afternoon, since they had another month until the NCAA Championships.

Emma’s school started at seven forty-five which meant if he got to Casey’s around eight, they could spend the whole day just relaxing.

When he arrived the garage was shut, so he walked up to the front door. Before he could knock, though, the door swung open and Casey jumped on him, wrapping her arms around his neck and her legs around his waist.

“My hero,” she said in a terrible southern accent. Then she started giving him little pecks all over his head and face.

He walked inside with her still wrapped around him and kicked the door shut. Laughing, he said, “Who is this strange girl, and what did you do with Casey?”

She continued on in the southern accent. “You won the race for your beloved and claimed victory.”

Ben sat her on the backside of the couch and looked down at her. “What on earth has gotten into you?”

“You, Sir Runner. Now, take me, take me now.” Casey puckered up her lips playfully and Ben laughed.

Ben leaned in to give her a quick kiss, thinking she might taste or smell like alcohol, because right now that was the only explanation he could come up with. She tasted like…cookies.

He looked around the room and to his right, sitting on the kitchen counter, he found his answer. He let go of Casey and she fell backwards onto the couch.

“Hey!” she said as she hit the couch cushion.

Ben walked over to the kitchen and picked up a small tub of Cookies ’n Cream ice cream and a bag of Fudge Filled Chewy Chips Ahoy. He held up both and looked over at Casey who was half-hiding, half-peering over the top of the couch. “Please tell me you are not eating cookies and ice cream at eight o’clock in the morning.”

Casey jumped over the couch and came running at Ben, a ball of sugar filled energy. She wrapped her arms around his waist, her legs around the back of his calves, and inched her way up his body. When she reached the top she bombarded his neck with kisses. “My hero,” she said. She stopped for a moment and looked at him with the most devious, sensual grin. She leaned in closer until there was almost no space between her lips and his. Then like a cheetah springing on a gazelle, she grabbed the ice cream with her left hand and the cookies with her right, hit the ground and took cover on the couch.

“You have serious problems,” Ben said.

Casey pulled out a cookie and dipped it in the ice cream and held it up for him to see. Then she started humming and dancing the cookie around like she was taunting him.

Ben took two steps, dove across the couch, snatched the cookie from her hand and shoved it in his mouth before she could barely move. She looked at him wide eyed and in complete silence and then jumped on him. They wrestled and tickled each other like five-year-olds, stopping every now and then for a quick cookie break.

This went on for about thirty more minutes and then she crashed on the floor next to him. Her head lay across his chest as he played with her hair until eventually he crashed too.

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Buzzing Book: Killer Pursuit by Jeff Gunhus

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About the Book

Killer Pursuit

Title: Killer Pursuit: An Allison McNeil Thriller

Author: Jeff Gunhus

Published: January 18th, 2016

Publisher: Seven Guns Press

Genre: Thriller

Content Warning: Violence and adult situations

Synopsis

When a high-society call girl is murdered in her Georgetown home, investigators find two cameras hidden in the walls of her bedroom. One has its memory erased, presumably by the murderer. The second is connected to the Internet through an encrypted connection…and no-one knows who’s on the other end.

Special Agent Allison McNeil is asked by beleaguered FBI Director Clarence Mason to run an off-the-record investigation of the murder because of the murder’s similarity to a case she worked a year earlier. Allison knows the most direct path to apprehending the killer is to find the videos, but the rumors that the victim’s client list may have included Mason’s political enemies has her worried about the director’s motives. As she starts her investigation, she quickly discovers that she’s not the only one pursuing the videos. In fact, the most aggressive person racing against her might be the murderer himself.

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About the Author

Jeff Gunhus

Jeff Gunhus is the author thriller and horror novels for adults and the middle grade/YA series, The Templar Chronicles. The first book, Jack Templar Monster Hunter, was written in an effort to get his reluctant reader eleven-year old son excited about reading. It worked and a new series was born. His books for adults have reached the Top 100 on Amazon and have been Foreword Reviews Book of the Year Finalists.

After his experience with his son, he is passionate about helping parents reach young reluctant readers and is active in child literacy issues. As a father of five, he leads an active lifestyle in Maryland with his wife Nicole by trying to constantly keep up with their kids. In rare moments of quiet, he can be found in the back of the City Dock Cafe in Annapolis working on his next novel.

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Excerpt

The two members of the tactical squad approaching from the front reached the deck that wrapped around the front of the building. As they strode across it, the old wood floorboards groaned. The men froze. The seconds stretched out. Allison became suddenly aware of the hum of insects in the air around her. The dampness of her own skin. The sound of a bird calling in the distance. All of her senses were wired tight. An entire year of her life was wrapped up in the next few seconds. And if she’d got it wrong, Garret would have the ammo he’d been looking for to get her out of his unit once and for all. But she wasn’t worried about herself. What really bothered her was the chance that she had it right, that this was Kraw’s hideout, but that somehow they’d spooked him and he’d already slipped away. If that had happened, he’d be hundreds of miles away by tomorrow, scouting for his next victim as he traveled.

Movement in the cabin. Just a flutter. Like a bird trapped in a cage. Only her intuition told her it was more than a bird. It had been an arm. A human arm. Sam Kraw.

Based on the lack of movement from the tactical team, she realized no one else had seen it.

“I’ve got movement,” she whispered into her mic. “Window to the right of the front door. An arm.”

“I didn’t see anything,” Garret whispered.

Allison ignored him. The men around the cabin responded immediately, reorienting to the front door. Guns pointed at the window.

One of the men produced a miniram, a high impact, brute force breaching tool. Coordinating with his partner, he crouched next to the door while the other man readied a flash-bang grenade.

There was a pause, as if someone had pressed a button on a TV remote. Everyone was in place. The air seemed to still as if the world knew something was about to happen. Allison had her binoculars trained on the window where she’d seen the movement. If Kraw was inside, then the nightmare was almost over. She’d know in a few seconds whether that was the case or not.

But in that second, she saw the movement again.

Only this time, she knew something was wrong.

It was a man’s arm, she saw it clearly this time. But it was too stiff. The color was off. And, attached at the shoulder, she saw a coil of wire.

A mannequin arm on a spring.

Meant to make them think someone was inside.

It was a trap.

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