Buzzing Blast: Mirror Image by Michele Pariza Wacek #Giveaway @MichelePW

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About the Book

Mirror Image

Title: Mirror Image

Author: Michele Pariza Wacek

Published: May 27th, 2016

Publisher: Love-Based Publishing

Genre: Psychological Thriller, Mystery, Suspense

Synopsis

Which would be worse: knowing that your dead sister has come back to life and is now a serial killer, or that someone else is the killer… and that person is you?

Six months after Linda’s sister Elizabeth killed herself, Linda has finally gotten her life back to some semblance of normalcy. Until a killer appears who is stalking men … a killer who resembles Elizabeth … a killer who seems somehow familiar to Linda.

And to make matters worse, Detective Steve Anderson, her old high school crush, is assigned to the case. He’s asking Linda all sorts of questions – questions she couldn’t possibly have an answer to.

There’s no reason for him to be investigating Linda. She couldn’t possibly have anything to do with this.

Could she?

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About the Author

Michele Pariza Wacek

When Michele was 3 years old, she taught herself to read because she wanted to write stories so badly.

As you can imagine, writing has been a driving passion throughout her life. She became a professional copywriter (which is writing promotional materials for businesses), which led to her founding a copywriting and marketing company that serves clients all over the world.

Along with being a copywriter, she also writes novels (she’s published two psychological thrillers/mystery/suspense novels “The Stolen Twin” and “Mirror Image” so far) plus, she is also the author of the “Love-Based Copy” books, which are a part of the “Love-Based Business” series and cover both business and personal development.

She holds a double major in English and Communications from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Currently she lives in the mountains of Prescott, Arizona with her husband Paul and her border collie Nick and southern squirrel hunter Cassie and is hard at work on her next novel.

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Excerpt

Someone else is dead.

Linda paused, her hand reaching for The Riverview Times. The words echoed strangely in her head, bouncing around like some demented ping-pong ball.

Someone else is dead.

Where had that come from? What did it mean?

She stretched her hand forward again to take the paper, but found herself unable to make actual contact with it. Instead, her hand hung there, motionless. Uneasiness crept through her body, as thick as black ink oozing across a table.

All right, now she was being ridiculous. Where on earth was any of this coming from? She shook her head and snatched up the newspaper.

Tucking it under her arm, she hurried to her car, refusing to think about why she had such a curious reluctance to touch it.

She deliberately turned the radio off in her car, not wanting to hear any news. Instead, she drummed her fingers on the steering wheel and watched the clouds scuttle across the dull gray sky. Another beautiful November day in Wisconsin. For the millionth time, she wondered if it would kill the sun, to show its face a little more.

Turning into the parking lot of Bay Mutual Insurance, she thought again of how much she hated her job. And again, she reminded herself that she didn’t have a whole lot of options to choose from.

Linda parked and entered the building, passing the company’s mission statement in the lobby. Bay Mutual offered auto, home, business, health and life insurance to its customers. And squat to its employees, Linda added to herself, as she did every day.

She hung up her coat and headed to the cramped break room for coffee. Carla was already there, pouring herself a cup.

“So, how was your date last night?” Linda greeted her, taking a mug out of the drying rack.

Carla rolled her dark blue eyes, filling Linda’s mug with steaming, black liquid. “Don’t even ask.”

“That good?”

“It started there. Then, it went downhill.” Carla put down the coffee pot, fluffed her short, curly brown hair and opened up the refrigerator for cream. “My mistake was thinking it couldn’t get any worse. Then, I heard the radio this morning. Another dead single man. It’s already nearly impossible to get a decent date in this town. Now, some crazy person is killing the few eligible men out there!”

Someone else is dead. It hit her like a slap in the face, and Linda put her coffee down without drinking it, instinctively knowing she could never force the liquid past the thick sludge that now filled her throat.

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Buzzing Blitz: The SEAL Next Door by Makenna Jameison #Giveaway

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About the Book

The SEAL Next Door

Title: The SEAL Next Door

Series: Alpha SEALS #5 (Standalone)

Author: Makenna Jameison

Published: March 29th, 2016

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Content Warning: Sexual Content

Age Recommendation: 18+

Synopsis

The girl next door is all grown up, and she’s ready to play….

Brianna Miller’s life isn’t going as planned. She’s moonlighting as a cocktail waitress after getting laid off from her marketing job, her older brother was injured in Afghanistan, and the man she’s pined for since she was a teenager is back in her life, hotter than hell and more tempting than ever.

Navy SEAL Matthew “Gator” Murphy has only one goal when he returns to Pensacola, Florida for a long weekend—to welcome his best friend home and then get the hell out of there. There’s no way he can face life with his buddy in a wheelchair, not when he was the one who convinced him to enlist in the first place.

When a gorgeous blonde waitress catches his eye, the last woman he expects to see is Brianna, his best friend’s younger sister. The chemistry between them sizzles as Matthew tries to stay away from temptation, but sometimes a raging inferno begins with only a spark.

The SEAL Next Door, a stand-alone novel, is book five in the new Alpha SEALs series.

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About the Author

Bestselling Author Makenna Jameison writes stories with hot alpha males, steamy romance, and happily-ever-afters. She loves reading, writing, coffee, the beach, and traveling to new places. Makenna lives in Washington DC with her husband and daughter.

Makenna loves to hear from her fans! Contact her or join her mailing list by sending an email to info@makennajameison.com.

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Excerpt

Brianna muttered under her breath as she tripped over her flippers in the shallow water and ungracefully fell over with a splash. The school of fish scattered in the clear, turquoise waters, and she tried to remember why she’d enjoyed this when she was younger. Or why she’d agreed to go snorkeling with Matthew today. She was supposed to be celebrating her brother’s long-awaited homecoming, spending the day with family, not out here making a fool of herself.

She didn’t even have her phone with her in case her parents needed to reach her or someone else contacted her from the police station. She supposed that Matthew had thought this would be a fun distraction from what was going on at the moment, but her mind was on everything but the fish she was supposed to be admiring.

Chunks of shells cut against her hands as she struggled to push herself back up, and a strand of hair fell into her face. Maybe flippers were good for swimming, but they were pretty lousy for attempting to walk around in. No one else seemed to be having as much trouble as her though.

She lost her footing again as she tried to stand, dropping her goggles and snorkel into the water, which she’d long since pulled from her face.

“I got you,” a deep voice said, and suddenly Matthew’s strong hands were wrapping around her waist, lifting her back onto her feet. He held her directly in front of him, his chest to her back, and the feel of his fingers against her bare flesh sent tingles rushing down her arms and warmth coiling in her belly. She froze, not daring to move.

“Are you okay?”

“Fine,” she said stiffly, pulling his hands from her waist and awkwardly turning to face him.

Droplets of water ran down his bronzed skin, and she tried not to stare at his wall of muscles. At those wide shoulders, broad pecs, and eight-pack abs. Or into those deep green eyes.

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Buzzing Book: STORM by Skye Knizley #Interview #Giveaway @Skye_Knizley

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About the Book

Storm

Title: STORM

Series: Storm Chronicles Book 6

Author: Skye Knizley

Published: April 21st, 2016

Publisher: Vamptasy Publishing

Genre: Horror, Urban Fantasy

Content Warning: Contains violence and horror elements

Age Recommendation: 17+

Synopsis

On a rainy night in 1971 the cruise ship Crescent Star vanished in the North Atlantic without a trace. No crew, no lifeboats and no wreckage was ever found, in spite of a three-week search.

Two days ago, she crashed through and sank a pleasure yacht off the coast of New York, leaving five people dead. The ship has answered no hails and no one appears to be aboard. Agent Raven Storm and a forensic team lead by Aspen Kincaid have been tasked to investigate and bring the ship in, if possible.

What happened to 720 crew and passengers and where has the ship been for 44 years?

Clue by macabre clue, Raven uncovers the truth of the Crescent Star and faces a villain from beyond the grave.

But how can she stop something she can’t see, can’t touch, and that won’t hesitate to use the ones she loves against her?

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About the Author

Skye Kinzley

Skye Knizley is the #1 bestselling author of the Storm Chronicles series, an urban fantasy tale that mixes mystery, magic and horror and the Shadowlands series of modern espionage thrillers. All of her books feature strong female leads who can hold their own with the men and then some, witticisms and of course Skye’s trademark snark.

Skye, who holds degrees in forensic science and psychology, lives in the middle of nowhere in a tiny little town of about 700 people. The small town life appeals to her and she finds it conducive to writing. When she isn’t setting quill to parchment (okay she actually uses a laptop, but quills are cool) Skye can be found practicing Muay Thai, camping, motorcycling and hiking with her psychotic Siberian husky, Piper. Once a year she participates in an uncontrolled “float trip.” Whether she wants to or not. It’s a camping thing.

Skye is also a proud gamer girl and an avid fan of role-playing games. She currently participates in a weekly Shadowrun game held at a local gaming store (stop in and say ‘hi!’) and is the writer and game-master of a private Fantasy Flight game held once a month.

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Interview

Describe your relationship with a good book.

A good book is hard to find, but I am always open to starting new relationships.  My favorite is when our eyes meet across a crowded coffee shop.  Once I have the book’s attention, I will smile shyly and hide behind my sunglasses, pretending not to look.

But the book knows.  It knows I’m looking, aching to know what is between its sexy covers.

I might spend the next few days coming back and looking, but never touching, never touching.  Until the book is ready to take me home and have its way with me.

I’m sorry, the rest of this is censored…

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

I started writing very young.  I wrote my first song when I was nine and my first game character around the same time.  The first thing I would say I am proud of was a short story I wrote when I was thirteen or fourteen.  It was given several English awards and submitted to a junior literary magazine by my English teacher.  The story was based on a game night with friends and family and told the story from the perspective of a pink twenty-sided die.

Please describe your work ethic as an author.

I am a full time author, this is what I do for a living.  I get up every day, go to the gym for two hours, come home and plant myself in front of my laptop until I hit my writing goal for the day.

Writing is a job, like any other.  Yes, I love what I do and I am thankful every day that I get to spend my time writing and churning out stories for my readers, but it is still a job.  I have a goal of putting out no fewer than four books per year and thus far I have hit and exceeded that goal every year.  2016 will likely have six books from me by Christmas, with the shortest being a 50000 word Dreadpunk novella.

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

It is all about scheduling.  I have a routine I follow every day, and the routine is set so that there is time to have a life.  My word count is set at something I can achieve without difficulty so if I decide to go do something else on a Tuesday I can make up the word count the next day.  I try hard not to say no to my friends, but everyone understands this is a job, just like theirs, and I have a schedule to keep.

Keeping that schedule allows me to have a weekly game night, go to the gym, go to concerts, enjoy movie nights and do pretty much everything I want to without compromising my work.

Why did you write this book?

The basic answer is because it is the sixth book in the series, without which there is no book seven.

I’m not the kind of author who writes books with intentional messages or agendas, they are more the literary equivalent of an action movie.  With that said, this was a necessary story in the saga of Raven and her friends/family.  Each novel is a stand alone mystery with a satisfactory ending.  Nobody has to read more than one novel or read the ones before this to enjoy this story, but each book also continues Raven’s ongoing plotline and this one is no different.  Questions brought up in book five are answered in this, and more questions are raised for future books.

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

I have degrees in Forensic Science and Psychology, and that experience plays a part in my novels, particularly the Storm Chronicles.  Raven is a Federal Agent and her familiar, Aspen is a crime scene technician.  I draw on my experience in that field to add some realism to the crime scenes and horror of the novels.  I admit, I take shortcuts, these are not police procedurals (which I hate) but the science is grounded in reality and in my own experience investigating crime scenes.

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

In five years I truly hope my agent will have gotten off his ass and made the Shadowlands series a TV show and the Storm Chronicles into a movie.  I hope to be married and living somewhere not where I am, preferably someplace with sandy beaches and more stable weather.

I also hope to have solved some of the cold cases sitting on my desk and helped bring closure to some families.  When I can I investigate the unsolved murders of trans-women, of which there are far too many.

Excerpt

Raven Storm sat up in bed, a scream fighting behind her lips. It had happened again; her father in the shadows, the boom of her pistol, and his body dropping. She’d had the nightmare every night since coming home. Her psyche eval was so bad she’d been dropped from field duty and was investigating UFO sightings in Montana. Not her best job ever.

She slid out of bed and padded toward the stairs. Around her was the loft bedroom she shared with her fiancé, Aspen. The walls were painted a soft lavender that was almost grey and matched the carpet. Their king-size bed was covered with a blue flowered bedspread and the nightstands were antiques sent by Valentina from Chicago.

Raven ran a hand over the Maltese Falcon poster in the stairwell and turned out of habit to the kitchen, where two scoops of coffee and some hot water soon produced a brew that would be guaranteed to keep her up the rest of the night. She was just sitting down to savor a cup when Aspen’s cell started chirping from its charging plate on the counter.

Who the hell is calling her at this hour? Raven wondered.

She picked it up and slid her finger over the screen. “Storm.”

There was a pause and then, “Agent Storm? Is Aspen Kincaid there?”

“She’s sleeping, like normal people, who is this?”

“This is Kane, I’m with Agent in Charge King’s office. Please get her, its important,” Kane said.

“Who is it?”

Raven looked up to see Aspen leaning over the upstairs railing, her purple hair trailing around her face.

“King’s office,” Raven replied.

Aspen wiped sleep from her eyes. “They have a case for you?”

Raven shrugged. “It’s for you, probably a crime scene.”

Aspen hurried down the steps and took the phone.

“This is Aspen.”

She listened for a moment, and turned to Raven, eyes wide. She pressed the speaker button and held the phone out. “Mr. Kane, can you say that again?”

“We have a code thirteen emergency. The cruise ship Crescent Star is carrying an unknown preternatural threat and heading toward New York City. I need you to lead a team onboard and stop it before it reaches the one mile marker. You’ll be briefed enroute.”

“Kane, this is Storm. Aspen isn’t a field agent, who gave the order?” Raven asked.

“King, Agent Storm.”

Aspen shook her head. “He knows I’m not an agent, Kane. I’m a lab-rat, I only go with Raven on certain cases, he can’t—”

“You have basic field training and he handpicked you, Kincaid. You’re on a chopper in twenty minutes, a car is on the way.”

“I want to talk to King,” Raven said.

“He didn’t ask for you, Storm,” Kane said.

“I don’t give a shit, Mr. Kane,” Raven said. “Code thirteen is the catastrophe code, you’re not sending Aspen—”

“This conversation is over, Agent Storm. Agent Kincaid, be ready,” Kane said.

The line went dead. Raven stared at the phone, then looked at Aspen.

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Buzzing Book: Eerie by C.M. McCoy #Interview #Giveaway @eerie_o

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About the Book

Eerie

Title: Eerie

Author: C.M. McCoy

Published: December 15th, 2015

Publisher: Omnific/Simon & Schuster

Genre: YAm paranormal adventure with romance

Age Recommendation: 16+

Synopsis

*** As featured in PEOPLE Magazine ***

Hailey’s dreams have always been, well…vivid. As in monsters from her nightmares follow her into her waking life vivid.

When her big sister goes missing, eighteen-year-old Hailey finds the only thing keeping her safe from a murderous 3,000-year-old beast is an equally terrifying creature who has fallen “madly” in love with her. Competing to win her affection, the Dream Creature, Asher, lures her to the one place that offers safety–a ParaScience university in Alaska he calls home. There, she studies the science of the supernatural and must learn to live with a roommate from Hell, survive her ParaScience classes, and hope the only creature who can save her from an evil immortal doesn’t decide to kill her himself.

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About the Author

CM McCoy

C.M. McCoy is an Irish dancer and former military officer living in the Great White North. Though B.S.’d in chemical engineering and German from Penn State University, she’s far happier writing stories involving monsters and Alaska (with an awkward kiss in the mix.) While working 911 dispatch for Alaska State Troopers, she learned to speak in 10-codes, which she still does…but only to annoy her family.

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Interview

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

I feel like I’ve always been writing. It started with a journal I’d made from school tablet paper I’d stapled together when I was in second grade. Then I started writing short stories somewhere around the fifth grade, which is the first story I remember feeling proud of. It was called Hamster Houdini, which was a comedy about an uncanny albino hamster with a habit of breaking out of his cage.

2) Please describe your work ethic as an author.

Up at 3am to write while the house is quiet, always have a notebook and pen within reach, and before bed, type up all those notebook ideas.

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

Not well. I tend to get a little obsessed with writing when my characters are chattering in my head. Luckily, I have a husband who knows he can tear me away with an ATV ride/camping trip/fishing expedition/other Alaska fun.

4) Why did you write this book?

Hailey’s story had to be told—her adventure in moving from normal Pittsburgh to supernatural Alaska to study at a ParaScience University was too fantastic to keep to myself 🙂

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

Bullying is an underlying theme in EERIE, and I find myself drawing on my own insecurities and experiences when developing my characters.

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

I truly hope to make EERIE a 5-book series, and I’ve got a few other books in work, one of which is a YA Thriller I’m editing now. That will hopefully be out next year.

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

I really was an astronaut (and if you read tabloid media, you might just believe that.)

Excerpt

A Guarded Girl

“Of all forms of caution, caution in love is perhaps the most fatal to true happiness.”

Bertrand Russell

 

Hailey stared at the empty can on her tray, silently willing the caffeine to kick in. The last thing she needed was to fall asleep, dream of monsters, and have an “episode” in front of her 200 closest non-friends.

No way she’d let that happen.

Now if only her droopy eyelids would cooperate, because the hard plastic chair under her butt sure wasn’t. The dang thing was teasing her and feeling mighty comfy, like a puffy armchair, and she was sinking fast. Thankfully, though, just as her head bobbed, the bell rang, jolting her into a wide-eyed, full-body spasm.

Great. Real smooth, she thought, rubbing her face with both hands as a few gigglers shuffled past.

She groaned, rising with all the enthusiasm of a mushroom, not at all looking forward to another two hours inside the social torture chamber, or as everyone else referred to it, South Side High School.

She was so intent on avoiding the students there for the rest of her senior year that she rarely looked up from her books anymore, and those last two hours dragged. When three o’clock finally rolled around, she bolted outside, took the first open seat on the bus, rested her head against the window, and let it bounce there. She was just about to make it through another day of school very happily unnoticed, when Tage Adams smacked her on the back of the head.

“Ah!” she yelled, startled from sleep.

The bus was waiting at their stop, like normal, and Tage was waiting for her in the aisle, politely—not normal.

Tucking a wayward strand behind her ear, she hurried off the bus.

Tage followed.

“What’s up with you today?” he said nonchalantly, adjusting his pace to walk next to her.

He’d never done that before.

“Nothing,” Hailey said, surprised Tage was talking to her. They’d been catching the bus at the same stop for four years, and he’d never so much as looked at her.

“You’re usually not like that, that’s all.”

“Like what?”

“Nodding off in class, falling asleep on the bus…you know, slacking off. It’s just, you know, you usually have your nose in a book.”

He watches me?

“Oh,” she said, unsure.

“Guess you were working late last night…St. Paddy’s Day…”

“Yeah.” Of course she was working late. Her family owned the most popular Irish pub in Pittsburgh. Hailey pressed her lips together. Small talk was not her thing. Especially not with him.

Her mind went blank.

Searching the pavement for a thought, she chewed her lip as too many seconds stretched the silence. Finally, the pressure forced her good sense aside and she opened her mouth to say…anything.

“What’s—”

“Well, see ya ‘round, Dancing Queen.”

She snapped her mouth shut and waved as he peeled off and trotted down Bridge Street. She tried to form the word, “bye,” but all that came out was “buh—”. Standing dumbfounded, she stared after him. She hadn’t realized Tage knew she existed, let alone the fact that she waitressed. And danced.

Stunned, Hailey walked, then jogged, then stopped dead to puzzle over what had just happened. Then she jogged again until she finally reached the pub.

Nobody at that school “chatted” with Hailey. Not since the fourth grade, not since the day a particularly mean girl concocted a particularly ugly rumor—that Hailey had started the fire that killed her parents. The whispers and sideways glances lasted close to a year, and in trying to defend herself, Hailey only made things worse. By the time she figured out that nobody else believed in pyromaniac-nightmare-monsters, it was too late. She’d already earned the label, “weirdo,” which, unfortunately, stuck.

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Buzzing Book: Run by H.G. Lynch #Excerpt #Giveaway

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About the Book

Run Caged Trilogy Cover

Title: Run

Series: Caged Trilogy #1

Author: H.G. Lynch

Published: March 19th, 2015

Publisher: Vamptasy Publishing

Genre: YA Paranormal Romance

Content Warning: Mild sexual content and violence

Age Recommendation: 16+

Synopsis

Tilly is a witch…at least, she thinks she is. All she really knows is that she has powers she shouldn’t, and that the cruel women she escaped from – who definitely are witches – will stop at nothing to make her their prisoner again because of those powers.

But Tilly has fallen in with a strange group – a pack of werewolves. The pack wants to protect her; none of them more so than Dominic, the alpha’s kind-hearted son. Tilly thinks she might be falling for him, but she can’t help being fascinated by his brooding, mysterious half-brother Spencer.

Caught between the two, Tilly isn’t sure anymore what she’s most scared of: the witches hunting her down, or her own heart betraying her.

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About the Author

HG Lynch

H.G. Lynch is a Paranormal Romance author from Scotland. She is an avid reader, and cat-lover. She spends most of her days writing, while wrestling her cat off her laptop. She loves horse-riding, Star Trek, and snow.

Her books are dark paranormal romances.

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Interview

1) Describe your relationship with a good book.

Love/Hate. I love reading, and a good book can steal my heart. But I hate finishing it. It’s always hard to reach the last page of a really great story.

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

I started writing at 15, and it wasn’t until I wrote Run that I was really proud of what I’d written. I’d worked so hard on it, created so many threads of emotion and such strong characters, I was so happy when it was finished.

3) Please describe your work ethic as an author.

Depends on my mood. Sometimes I can write for six or seven hours without a break, and other times I sit down and stare at the screen for five minutes, utterly blank.

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

I have a part-time job at an animal sanctuary, so I do most of my writing and promotional work in the evening, which works out because I mostly target American audiences, which are several hours behind me in Britain.

5) Why did you write this book?

I had the idea, the plot, the characters in my head. I couldn’t not write it. I had to tell the story unravelling inside my head.

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

I was bullied in school so I tend to use memories of my bullies to create good villains and make my character’s emotions and reactions realistic.

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

My ultimate goal is to make the New York Times Bestseller List. If I can do that, my life will be complete.

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

I’m a people person. I love being in public, watching strangers passing by, wanting to hear their stories. Concerts and nightclubs are my favourite places.

Excerpt

Shame and guilt warred with anger inside me. After how he’d treated me earlier, I should have hated Spencer. I didn’t. When I saw him sitting by the stream, I should have wanted to go over and scream in his face. I didn’t. Seeing him there, curled up with his head in his hands, clutching his hair like he was in pain, I just couldn’t hold on to my fury and hurt. I’d never seen him so discomposed, so rattled. It shook me, and I wondered what had him so upset. Was it me? Was this because of me? Or was it egotistical – maybe even stupid – of me to think that? To hope for it?

Abruptly he started pulling off his shoes and threw them carelessly, one landing in the stream. He shot to his feet, tugging off his t-shirt, and I bit my lip gingerly. The breeze swept a few strands of hair into my face and I brushed them back absently, but I saw Spencer freeze, tensing. He lowered his t-shirt back into place and stood, strung tight as a bow, staring into the water. I waited for him to do something else, to turn and walk away or to Change and vanish into the trees to prowl the night. He just stood there. Waiting.

He knew I was there.

He was waiting for me to make a choice.

I could walk over there, or I could turn and leave.

I started to turn, my feet muffled on the dirt and moss, and then I paused, thinking of the way he’d been clutching his hair, growling, muttering to himself. I hesitated, uncertain. Words fought in my head: You understand me, Tilly…I said I love you…I don’t say things I don’t mean…I lied. I lied. He lied. He’d lied to me. But I was starting to wonder, watching him now, which time he’d really lied. I needed to know.

I stepped out of the trees. Spencer didn’t turn, though I noticed his head tilted ever so slightly in my direction, listening. For a moment, I just stood and stared at his back, the tight set of his shoulders, the curled weights of his fists at his sides. And then he spoke.

“What are you doing out here?” he asked, his voice flat. I recalled he’d asked the same thing in the exact same tone the first night I’d found him by the stream, chucking pebbles into the water. It felt like an eternity ago, though I knew it had only been a few weeks. Hell, yesterday felt like an eternity ago. Everything in my head was blurred, confused, jumbled. I rubbed my forehead, trying to focus, but all I could think of was Spencer’s eyes when he promised on the night of the full moon, after the attack, that he wouldn’t let anyone hurt me for any reason. He’d said so many things like that, been my saviour so many times.

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Buzzing Blitz: Eun Na and the Phantom by Erica Laurie #Excerpt #Giveaway

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About the Book

Eun Na and the Phantom

Title: Eun Na and the Phantom

Author: Erica Laurie

Published: February 2nd, 2016

Genre: Fantasy

Synopsis

One man’s immortal curse.

The precious gift of a dragon’s soul.

And a woman who can set him free.

A logger is in debt to his landlord, and he must pay up or hand over his daughter, Eun Na as payment.

Hardworking and kind, Eun Na attracts the attention of a mysterious man from the mountains. When an accident renders her father unable to work, the handsome young man steps in and offers his assistance. Yet he is not what he seems.

Eun Na and the Phantom is a magical story set in a fictional world based on historic Korea. It is sure to please both readers of fantasy and viewers of K-dramas a like.

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About the Author

Erica Laurie

Bookworm. Shutterbug. Story writer. LDS. Wife. Mother. Loves dragons and Korean dramas.

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Excerpt

“Are you a ghost?” Eun Na asked as she looked and saw Tae Kyung standing there. He was leaning up against a tree. His eyes went wide briefly, as a bit of color left his face. Was he surprised to see her? No, it wasn’t that Eun Na reminded herself. It was something else. He had called to her first.

“Something like that,” Tae Kyung replied.

“Well that would explain it” Eun Na walked to the side of the road where Tae Kyung was standing and sat down next to him. Eun Na removed her worn shoe. One of the pieces of twine was broken. She would need to mend it.

“What would explain what?” Tae Kyung asked as he joined her.

“Ghosts would explain my wound,” Eun Na said as she pulled off her sock and revealed the angry looking red streak on her leg. Its dark color became lighter. “It’s even healing right now, before my eyes.” If she hadn’t seen it fade, she’d not have believed it.

“Mmm,” Tae Kyung murmured as he reached over and put a hand on her head. She felt a tingling sensation on her scalp from his touch. “You must have hit your head when you fell into that hole.”

“Is that your polite way of saying I’m going crazy?” Eun Na said, turning her head to look at him as she spoke. The smile he gave her made her heart rate speed up. She moved to cover her feet when Tae Kyung spoke.

“There’s nothing wrong with your leg.”

“Huh?” Eun Na looked at her leg. Tae Kyung was right; the angry red wound was gone. “Maybe I am going crazy.” Eun Na gave Tae Kyung a pondering look, and then leaned over and pinched his arm hard.

“Hey! What did you do that for?” Tae Kyung shouted, leaning away from her.

“Sorry. I was just checking to see if you were real.”

“Shouldn’t you have pinched yourself to see if you were awake?” Tae Kyung grumbled, rubbing his arm and watching Eun Na warily.

“I am awake. That’s the problem,” Eun Na replied. “My life is turning into a huge mess it seems.”

“I think you need new shoes,” Tae Kyung informed her.

“What?” His sudden change of topic confused her.

“I bet that’s why you were limping. So, put your sock and shoe back on, and let’s go see what we can find.”

“That’s all right. I’ll make do with these. My family can’t afford shoes just now,” Eun Na explained as she finished putting her shoe back on and stood up. “Well, I must be going.”

“To buy shoes,” Tae Kyung said as he moved swiftly. He took one of Eun Na’s arms at the wrist, and in a fluid motion, lifted her onto his back, her legs to either side.

She had no choice but to wrap her arms around his neck and shoulder. “Hey! Put me down.”

“Only after we buy you a pair of shoes that are not worn out to strings.”

“They are made of twine,” Eun Na laughed.

“As I said, they are nothing more than strings,” Tae Kyung said, winning the argument.

Eun Na decided to rest her head on his strong shoulders and just enjoy the moment.

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Buzzing Blitz: In Black & White by Catherine Lavender

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About the Book

In Black and White

Title: In Black & White

Author: Catherine Lavender

Published: May 12th, 2016

Publisher: Chamomile Books LLC

Genre: Women’s Contemporary Fiction

Synopsis

Micah Winters always knew that she was different. It was the pigment of her skin and the texture of her hair that revealed that she was a woman from biracial parents. For five decades, Micah’s African American mother has remained silent about Micah’s estranged father (Sidney Irving). It is not until after Sidney Irving’s death that Micah learns that she is the daughter of the legendary novelist and screenwriter. Now with her mother’s memory fading away from Alzheimer’s disease, Micah can only rely on a novel that was written from her father years ago to understand her parents past during the time of segregation in the United States. Micah’s once simple life is not so simple anymore as she tries to make sense of an unfamiliar world as she inherits her father’s wealth and private past. With an abandoned heart, Micah must forgive the past in order to discover who she really is.

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About the Author

Catherine Lavender

Catherine Lavender is from Baltimore, Maryland but now resides in Tampa, Florida with her miniature schnauzer name Ripken. She is an animal activist, as well as a supporter of the organization First Book which helps supply literature for underprivileged children. In her spare time, Catherine enjoys reading classic literature and playing the acoustic guitar.

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Excerpt

Sidney Irving knew that his time had come. At the age of eighty-four, the prospect of imminent death didn’t frighten him. In truth, death was a welcome reprieve from the loneliness that had plagued him for the past few decades.

As a well-known and respected author, Sidney achieved much success in his youthful, productive years. He was certain that people would continue to read his novels and watch movies based on his screenplays long after he was gone. He had won many awards, given interviews, and shared his work on public platforms. For a long time, his work satisfied and fulfilled him in a way that his life was not able to. But then, old age caught up. He couldn’t write as well or as quickly as he used to, and eventually, even the personal delight in finding the right word, and the perfect sentence began to elude him.

Sidney knew that like most men, he had committed a number of mistakes during his years of living. Unfortunately, many of them came back to haunt him on his death bed. Chief among them was a relentless guilt that ravaged his already worn-out body.

However, he had already done all that he could do to set things right after his death. There was nothing else that could be done. Perhaps in time, he would be forgiven. It pained him that he did not take that step forward while he still had the energy to do so. It was cowardice; he knew. Although, it was hard to make amends with the distressing fear of facing rejection and humiliation.

When he died, things would be set right – as they should have been fifty years ago.

A sudden cough escaped his lips. Years of habit brought him to cover his mouth with his hand, which was now leathery, spotted, and dry. Once, he had been a robust man, with an almost insatiable lust for life, but age had stripped him of all energy.

His nurse, a staid, matronly woman of middle-age, walked into the room. “You have a visitor, Mr. Irving. It is Nathan. Should I bring him in?”

“Yes, let Nathan come in,” he wheezed.

Nathan came to Havre de Grace seven years ago. An ex-Navy SEAL, who had been fighting his own personal demons after taking an early retirement from the military, with hopes to begin a new life, Nathan started working at the Irving Estate as a handyman. As the years went by, he slowly opened up to Sidney.

Nathan walked in. For a moment, he stood staring at Sidney. “And here I thought you would be up for a round of golf, but you are still lounging in the bed.”

The laughter that escaped Sidney’s lips turned to a cough. After helping Sidney sit up against the plush pillows that neatly lined the headboard of the bed, Nathan made him drink some water. “You…” Words seemed to escape him as he tried to catch his breath.

Sidney leaned back and rested his head against one of the pillows. “Don’t worry, Nate. I’ve made my peace. My time has come.”

“Don’t say that.” Nathan dragged the nurse’s chair closer to the bed and sat down. “It’s my turn to beat you in a game of chess.”

Sidney smiled. He would miss his time with Nathan. Over the years, they had formed a friendship of mutual trust and respect, and the two men bonded over games of chess and broken shingles on the roof. If he could have told someone about the entire truth of his sad, old tale, he would have chosen to share it with Nathan. Even now, he wished he could bear his soul – but it would not assuage the guilt or undo the harm he already inflicted. “You’ve been a good friend, Nathan. Thank you,” he whispered in a voice that was as dry as rice paper.

“I’ll always be here for you, Sidney.”

“Promise me that if she decides to…”

Sidney didn’t have to finish the thought. Nathan already knew his friend’s wishes, and he wanted to put his mind at ease. “I’ll be here, Sidney. I’ll see it through. However, that’s not going to be for a long time. You still have some life left in you.”

Sidney turned his head to the side to look upon his friend, ignoring the twinges of pain that had already begun to stab him in his chest. “Nathan, we both know my time is short. Just promise me you’ll stick around.”

“This is home, Sidney,” Nathan said simply. “Where else am I going to go?”

It would have to do. He trusted Nathan to make the right choices.

The nurse came back into the bedroom, looking a little flustered. “Your lawyer is here, Mr. Irving? I told him that you already had a visitor, but he insists on seeing you and…”

“It’s alright. I’ll leave.” Nathan put his hand on top of Sidney’s, squeezed once, and while looking down at the floor to gather his emotions, he let go. “I’ll come back tomorrow.”

Nathan was a good man. Perhaps tomorrow Sidney would tell him more about things that had happened all those years… no, decades ago, but now was not the time. He watched his lawyer; Kris Angles come in. A handsome man, the streaks of silver in his hair only added to the distinguished image he cultivated with care. As Nathan left the room, the two men exchanged a look as they passed each other.

Kris took the seat Nathan had vacated. “I was in town for some work, and thought I would pay my respects to you, Sidney. It’s been a long time.”

With great effort, Sidney suppressed a cough. “Thank you for coming. For a minute, I thought there may be a problem with some paperwork.”

Kris put his briefcase on the floor. “No, everything is already arranged. Unless, of course, you have changed your mind as I advised…”

A sharp pain seared his chest and traveled down to his belly. “I haven’t, no.”

Kris smiled. “Then your wishes will be carried out as you’ve stated, Sidney. There will be sixty-five days before a decision has to be made. Are you sure you just don’t want to make it sixty days as per industry standard in the-”

Sidney cut him off with as much force and determination he could muster in his deteriorated condition. “Sixty-five days, Kris!”

“Okay, I’ll see that it gets done.”

“I know, Kris. I trust you.”

Finally, a long drawn-out cough brought the nurse back in. Her severe look was enough to make Kris stand.

He picked up his briefcase. “I don’t want to overtax you, my friend. I’ll come back soon.”

After Kris departed, the nurse checked Sidney’s temperature. “Would you like your pain medication now, Mr. Irving?”

He considered the option. The round, white pill would make the pain bearable, but it would also dull his memories and cloud his brain. And today of all days, he wanted to remember each tiny detail, examine every facet of his life, and relive every experience that once made his youth exciting.

“Not now,” he said, knowing he would have to take it soon enough if he wanted to sleep. The deadly combination of pain and a high fever made it impossible for him to rest for long, unless he was drugged with sleeping tablets and pain medication. For now, he didn’t want anything to disrupt his trip down memory lane.

“I’ll be right outside your room. Call me if you need anything.”

He watched his nurse depart, with his eyes tracing her path across the dark Persian carpet that adorned his room. Twin cherry and walnut chairs flanked a wishbone chest on top of which were placed bottles of his medications, and a striped brown and white curtain hung across the window that overlooked the estate garden. At this time of the year, the flowers would be in full bloom. He longed to take a look at the delicate daisies and the elegant roses that were the crowning jewel of his flower beds. Beyond the garden was the gleaming wooden dock where his sailboat would be anchored. Maybe one day he could walk down that way again, stand at the dock, and observe the blue herons that walk upon the shore of the Chesapeake Bay.

It was a pipe dream, of course. He would never be able to do the simple things he had taken for granted only months ago. Nevertheless, the biggest regret in his life was what he had done to Micah, his daughter, who was born from an African-American woman. Micah’s mother, Loretta was a dignified woman whose only crime had been falling in love with a white man. In the sixties, such an indiscretion was not permissible. Still, perhaps, they could have gotten away with it had they kept it quiet and discreet. Even so, when she fell pregnant, they had no choice but to separate. He missed Loretta, but what he missed most was the years of fatherhood that he threw away simply because his daughter did not share his pristine white coloring.

He had not been man enough to change his circumstances – and now, fifty years later; he regretted that decision more than anything. For a while after Loretta left, his life had been wonderful; friends, experiences, and his work were enough to sustain him. However, as the years blended into decades, his work lost the excitement he had once harbored for it, his friends moved away or got busy with families, and no experience was enough to relieve him of the utter tedium of his mundane existence. Perhaps, it would have been all so much better if he had not thrown aside the chance to be a father.

He never once talked to the child whom he abandoned, never picked her up, carried her in his arms or witnessed her smile as she found joy in small things. If she had shared his life, she would have grown up in this estate, run through the massive gardens, plucked his prized flowers and stood with him at the wooden dock as they enjoyed the cool breeze that filtered in through the bay. Perhaps, she would have sat by his side while he took his last breath.

Her company might have given him the solace he so desperately sought in the efficient but impersonal concern of the nurses who attended him, and the occasional kindness of his friends who dropped in once in a while.

He cast his thoughts back to the last time he saw her. She had not known he was there, but he had tracked her whereabouts to Baltimore, the city where she lived. Three years ago, or four; he could not quite remember. Nevertheless, he would never forget the soft, black curls that framed a face that was hauntingly beautiful with its bronze skin and delicate features. Even from afar, he had seen that she had his eyes; the same shade of hazel. His mother’s eyes passed on through him to his only child.

He had never been able to forget her. It was evident that he had missed his chance to have a stab at real happiness. And he had no one to blame for it but himself. It was his dream to make amends after death. Perhaps, then, he would be able to rest in peace.

Sidney’s eyes rested on the thin rays of sunlight that sneaked in through the chink in the curtains. It was the last thing he saw before his eyes closed – forever.

 

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Buzzing Book: Tesserae: A Memoir of Two Summers by Mathias B. Freese

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About the Book

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Book Title: Tesserae: A Memoir of Two Summers

Author’s Name: Mathias B. Freese

Genre: Non-Fiction/Memoir

Publisher: Wheatmark

# of Pages: 236

Synopsis

Tesserae: A Memoir of Two Summers stands above much of the crowd in its commitment to ask, ‘What is it to remember?’ Mathias B. Freese, tenderly plaiting a web that spreads from Woodstock, Las Vegas, Long Island, and North Carolina, locates friends and family, lovers long since gone, desire and passion sometimes quenched sometimes unrequited, and the harrowing agony that comes from that most soul-crushing word of all, regret. But Tesserae is not a work of sadness and grief. Rather, it is an effort from a trained psychotherapist adept at understanding the feelings that we all have. The quiescence found has a staying effect upon the mind; this memoir lingers in the reader’s memory for some time.” — Steven Berndt, Professor of American Literature, College of Southern Nevada

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About the Author

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MATHIAS B. FREESE is a multi-published, award-winning author, writer, teacher and psychotherapist.

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