Friday, August 26, 2016

Her Black Heart by A.J. Norris





Her Black Heart
Dark Amulet Series
Book Two
A.J. Norris

Genre: paranormal romance

Publisher: Limitless Publishing, LLC
Date of Publication: August 23, 2016

Number of pages: 345

Cover Artist: Deranged Doctor Designs

Book Description:

Julia Dunham is a monster. Her heart has been consumed by an amulet meant to create terror…

As a young girl, Julia received an amulet tainted by Abaddon, the Supreme Demon of the Netherworld, and the sigil slowly corrupts her heart. The power of the deceptive pendant gains the attention of her former employer, Maurice. He sends thugs to murder Julia and steal the amulet.

Immediately upon her death, Abaddon traps her on Earth, leaving her obsessed with retrieving the amulet. Julia must find a way to overcome her deadly obsession or be responsible for unleashing thousands of demons on humanity.

Ra’zael the Guardian fell for the wrong girl and lost his wings. He isn’t about to let it happen again…

Ra’zael is tasked with the mission of helping Julia overcome her compulsion to locate the amulet, though he’s reluctant to get involved. But as a fallen angel, he doesn’t have much choice—it’s the only way to earn back his wings. His fall from grace is still fresh in his mind, but despite his best effort, his passion for Julia can’t be ignored. He has to save her from herself.

Julia must make her own choices. Redeem herself or condemn Earth and her soul forever…

Despite Ra’zael’s warnings, Julia tracks Maurice and the amulet to Chicago. She has every reason to kill Maurice. He murdered her. He stole from her. Spending eternity in the Netherworld might be worth watching him die.

Ra’zael knows she still has goodness left inside her…he’s seen it. Julia just has to find it and fight the evil of…  Her Black Heart.


Excerpt:
“What am I going to do with you?” he’d said.
Julia could think of a lot of things Raz could do to her. “You can do anything you want to me.”
Ra’zael smiled and looked heavenward. A heady chuckle left his throat. “Anything? You may want to reconsider that statement.”
All sorts of scenarios danced around inside her mind, things involving rope and leather. Fantasies, yes, but fun to think about. “Uhhh…”
“Yeah, that’s what I thought.” The angel laughed quietly. She eased back into the seat and decided to change the subject; after all, he’d just taken her virginity. No sense in being greedy.
“Why are your wings gray?” she asked. “Do you have Abaddon’s poison in you?”
“Taint. I never allowed him to kiss me, and as far as I know he didn’t.” He shrugged. “Wings get dingy for lots of reasons. Probably because I was in Netherworld so long. I did bad shit.”
“Yeah, but to bad people, right?”
“Mostly.”
“Like what?”
Raz made an aggravated sounding growl. “Arghh…Julia. What’s this obsession you have with wanting to know the specifics? I thought I was a demon and acted accordingly.”
“Just curious.” She shoved her hands inside the front pouch pocket of her sweatshirt. The wad of cash from the Demon Ruler burned her palms. Julia took deep breaths as guilt panged her black heart. She focused on Raz’s chest and tried to match his breathing pattern—steady and rhythmic. Only his inhales and exhales were too long and the train car started spinning.
“You all right?”
Her head bobbled. “Hm…wha…”
“I asked if you were all right.”
“F-Fine…don’t I l-look all righ…” Julia’s words slurred and trailed off.
She woke up cradled in his arms. For someone who didn’t like to be touched, he certainly did a lot of touching. Not being able to resist, she reached up with her hand to cup his cheek. He veered his head away.
“Don’t,” he snapped.
Her bottom lip quivered. Why did she care? She was a monster.
He looked over his shoulder at the chair next to him. “Sorry,” he mumbled.
“What was that…that sounded like an apology,” Julia said softly. He guided her head to his chest and she sighed.
“What’s going to happen after we find the amulet?” My amulet.
“What do you mean?” he asked and relaxed his head back on the seat. “Let’s worry about getting the necklace back first then we’ll talk afterward.”

I can’t talk later; I have to kill you.

About the Author:
                                                                                               
A.J. Norris is a romantic suspense and paranormal romance novelist.  She began writing as a way to dim down the voices inside her head. She enjoys being able to get inside someone else's head, even a fictional one, and see what they see. Watching how her characters deal with difficult situations or squirm with the uncomfortable ones make the hard work of writing all worth it. She is a movie buff, especially book adaptations, loves watching her son play baseball and communing with other writers.  She lives with her family who are extremely tolerant (at least most of the time) of all her late nights behind the computer.





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Guest Blog with Heather Elizabeth King HallowRead Author

HallowRead is nearly here! It’s just two months away and I can’t wait!

I’ve done book events before, but this one is especially close to my heart me because it’s taking place in Maryland. I lived in Maryland for ten years and they were ten of the happiest years of my life. From weekend trips to St. Michaels on the Eastern Shore to day-long outings to Westminster in west Maryland, I grew to love this state. I loved it so much, in fact, that I’ve used it as a setting in a few of my books. 

My novel, Doomsday, takes place in the future, but if you read the book you’ll notice familiar places and street names. The city, where most of the action takes place, is named Bal’Mor. Can you guess what Bal’Mor is a play on? You got it. Baltimore. And though happily I never saw zombies or demons loose on the streets of Baltimore, it was fun to turn the city I love into a place of nightmare monsters.

Doomsday happens after the third world war. Not only were weapons used in my version of WWIII, biological and technological, but people also fought using dark magic. One of the effects of this is that the world is now covered in water. People travel by air or canal. Pratt Canal, Light Canal. Those names should sound familiar to anyone who loves Baltimore as much as I do. 

Writing Doomsday gave me an opportunity to completely transform my beloved Baltimore into a city of nightmares. You have the Underground, where the city’s outcasts live. These are people whose DNA was altered by the biological weapons used during the war. Then you have the magicians, who most people thought died out during the war. They’ve been living quietly in covens outside of the city, but recent events make them come out of hiding. There are the three classes of demons who should only be conjured by magicians powerful enough to control them. As Remy Jones, my heroine, learns. An-Yaka are the worse. Then you have the scourge of the city. The undead. The zombies who increase in number and make life difficult for Remy and her crew.

So when I can’t say I’m excited about HallowRead, I’m not joking. I hope to have a chance to meet lots of readers there! 

Doomsday Blurb:

The magicians have been exiled, no one dare speak of the half-men who roam the territories in the dead of night, and a wall protects the metropolis of Bal’Mor from the cities that have kept to the old ways. Peace has reigned in Bal’Mor since the end of World War Three, thanks to the security agency, Triune. But the rise of a powerful magician, bent on revenge, threatens the safety of all.

Investigator, Remington Jones, is an exile herself. Considered a parasite by the Confederation and forced to live in The Underground with other parasites, Remy has acquired fake documents that brand her a normal and allow her to live topside, illegally.

Remy may be one of the best investigators in the Confederation, but this case taxes even her abilities. Mainly, her ability to survive. She has to outsmart a magician, destroy a few thousand zombies, and figure out why it seems Triune--the organization that's supposed to be protecting everyone--is at the center of all the unrest. Complicating matters further, in order to solve this case she has to work with Vincent Hall, the second in command at Triune, and his team of genetically enhanced humans.

Buy Doomsday At Amazon


Author Bio:


Heather Elizabeth King is a novelist who lives in Virginia and writes paranormal mysteries and paranormal romance. She’s been a story teller for as long as she can remember. Some of her favorite memories are of telling stories to her girlfriends at slumber parties when she was a pre-teen.

Visit me online: www.heatherelizabethking.com








Hallowread is a book festival and mini-con for authors and fans of Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Steam Punk and Horror.

October 21-23 2016 in Havre de Grace, Maryland!




Multi author event with various activities throughout the weekend including Writing Workshops, Ghost Tour, SteamPunk Author Tea, Author Panels, Book Signing, Paranormal Investigation and so much more. Hang out with your favorite authors in our new host city, the haunted and historic town of Havre de Grace, Maryland!

Local Maryland author of dark urban fantasy, Rachel Rawlings, had a crazy idea. Create a book convention for genre fiction and hold it the weekend before Halloween. Haunted and historic Ellicott City held a special place in her heart so there was no other place to take her first ever convention. The town welcomed her and HallowRead with open arms. Each ticket sold helped raise money for the Ellicott City Partnership- a coalition of residents and business owners for the betterment of the town. HallowRead raised money for projects like rain barrels which help reduce the sediment and contaminants running into the Patapsco River and fund grants for projects like Paint Main Street which helped small business owners get a much needed fresh coat of paint improving the moral and over all appearance of the town.

Rachel is excited to take the convention on the road for 2016 and raise funds for Harford County literacy programs and the local library system! One ticket, whether it’s a $10 paranormal investigation or the full monty ticket, makes a difference for the town and the wonderful people who call it home, something Rachel is extremely proud of.

Click here to see a list of HallowRead events http://hallowread.com/events/

Get your tickets here: http://hallowread.com/tickets/

See a list of attending authors here: http://hallowread.com/authors/

Author Opportunities still available!

Interested in participating in HallowRead?

Registration of $35.00 includes a feature on panels, the signing, website and social media, plus other special incentives!


About the Founder of Hallowread:

Rachel Rawlings was born and raised in the Baltimore Metropolitan area. Her family, originally from Rhode Island, spent summers in New England sparking her fascination with Salem, MA. She has been writing fictional stories and poems since middle school, but it wasn't until 2009 that she found the inspiration to create her heroine Maurin Kincaide and complete her first full length novel, The Morrigna.

When she isn't writing, Rachel can often be found with her nose buried in a good book. An avid reader of Paranormal/Urban Fantasy, Horror and Steampunk herself, Rachel founded Hallowread- an interactive convention for both authors and fans of those genres.

More information on Hallowread, its schedule of events and participating authors can be found at www.hallowread.blogspot.com  and www.facebook.com/Hallowread .

She still lives in Maryland with her husband and three children.








Goodreads Author Page http://goo.gl/FZW0RN

Amazon Author Page http://goo.gl/Q6Ubn1

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Cover Reveal Immortal Billionaire by Jane Godman





Immortal Billionaire
Jane Godman

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Publisher: Harlequin Nocturne

Date of Publication: November 1, 2016

ASIN: B01EEZKX3K

Number of pages: 304
Word Count: 80 000

Cover Artist: Harlequin

Book Description:

Dark secrets and unquenchable desire collide in this captivating paranormal thriller…

Connie Lacey lives a nomadic existence. Alone. Safe. She can't risk being found by the stalker who haunts her waking nightmares. Until an invitation from billionaire Sylvester de León—to spend thirty days with him on his private island, Corazón—proves impossibly tempting. But one look at the gorgeous host's deep blue eyes, and Connie knows there is nothing safe about this paradise and the aristocratic man who calls it home.

The island is cursed…as is Sylvester himself. Yet something in him calls to Connie, ignites a desire that's filled with raw, timeless need. But Corazón has many secrets, each more dangerous than the last. And in a place where everlasting love, the past and fate intersect, even death is only a beginning…

Available for Pre-Order

Harlequin     Amazon     BN    Kobo     Google Play

Excerpt:

It is easy enough to list in advance, and with absolute certainty, those things for which we are prepared to die. Family, country, religion, the one we love, a valued way of life. Until we are faced with a situation that puts our convictions to the test, we can never know for sure which of these will hold true. There were many lessons to be learned during those strange weeks on the island of Corazón, but, for Connie Lacey, this would prove be the most important.
                                                                           
Four years of running and hiding. Four years of looking over her shoulder. Of viewing every man she met with suspicion. Of waking every morning, wondering if today was the day he would finally catch up with her.
The relief of being offered somewhere to hide was so huge it drove every other thought out of her head. She had a brief mental image of herself as a disaster survivor and the man opposite as the rescue worker who had just draped an emergency blanket around her shoulders. She resisted the temptation to cling to him, garbling out incoherent thanks until he was forced to gently pry her hands away. They were the wild thoughts spinning through Connie Lacey’s mind as she listened to the clipped tones of the attorney.
With hindsight, she probably should have paid more attention to the strangeness of the offer he was making and the diffident manner with which he made it. Gratitude will do that to you, she decided later. At the time her attention was taken up with grabbing this opportunity. Nod, smile, and sign on the dotted line. Don’t ask questions that might make him withdraw this incredible invitation. All she could focus on was the fact that—for thirty days, at least—she would not have to sleep with a knife under her pillow.
“You have one week.” She realized Mr. Reynolds had finished outlining the details of the proposal. “My client will expect you to be in Florida in exactly seven days’ time.”
Connie swallowed hard. She might have known there would be a catch. The logistics of getting to Florida posed a massive problem. Mentally, she reviewed the contents of her wallet. She knew exactly how much cash was in there. It wouldn’t get her across town let alone across the country. Before she could speak, Mr. Reynolds reached into the desk drawer and produced a hefty roll of banknotes. His expression softened slightly as he passed them across the desk.
“Expenses. For the journey and such sundry other items as may be necessary.” He cleared his throat with a hint of something that might have been embarrassment. “My client is a very exacting man. His guests will, for example, be required to dress for dinner during their stay on Corazón.”
Darn! And there I was thinking I had successfully managed to hide the fact that the sole is hanging off one of my sneakers and this sweater has forgotten what color it used to be.
Connie stuffed the wad of cash into her shoulder bag with a muttered word of thanks. If an encounter with Sylvester’s attorney could reduce her to the status of a gibbering wreck, how on earth was she going to cope with the man himself?
As she got to her feet, Mr. Reynolds rose and came around the desk. He held out his hand. Surprised, Connie took it. Instead of the handshake she had expected, he clasped her hand between both of his. It was an oddly tactile gesture for such an aloof man.
“However this venture may turn out…” He paused and Connie sensed he was fighting an internal battle. As if the personal and professional were at war within him. The result felt like his version of a truce. “I wish you well, Miss Lacey.”
It was only later, when she got back to her grim, one-room apartment and counted—then, in disbelief, re-counted—the money, that she began to truly appreciate the gulf between her world and that of Corazón. What constituted “sundry other items” to Mr. Reynolds was almost a year’s salary to Connie.
Laughing, she tossed the notes into the air and briefly contemplated just disappearing with them. To hell with “second cousin several convoluted times removed” Sylvester and his mysteriously worded proposition. This money could buy her the freedom from fear she had been dreaming of. Temporarily, it was true, but even that was so much more than she had wished for. No more moving from town to town and job to job? No more looking over her shoulder? Yeah, I’ll take that and deal with the future when it gets here.
A pang of guilt tugged at her. Backing out wasn’t an option. She had just accepted Mr. Reynolds’s wretched invitation and a promise was, after all, a promise. Besides—despite its reputation—she was intrigued enough by Corazón to want to see it and, even if she admitted it only to herself, she wanted to meet the legendary Sylvester.
The ease with which Arthur Reynolds, senior partner in the firm of Reynolds, Prudah and Taylor, had tracked her down was unsettling. Even if she hadn’t been contemplating answering Sylvester’s eccentric summons, it would have been time to move on. Goodbye—she experienced a minor moment of panic as she tried to remember where she was. It had to happen one day—Farmington, Missouri. The last month has been okay, but it was never a long-term thing. We both knew it. No hard feelings.

She had a week to prepare for the journey. With a shrug, she tucked the money away at the back of her closet and curled up on the bed with a book. Connie could have her belongings packed in an hour. She’d done it often enough.

About the Author:

Jane Godman writes in a variety of genre. Many of her stories are heavily tinged with the supernatural and elements of horror, with haunted characters tormented by dark secrets.

Jane writes paranormal romance for Harlequin Nocturne. Her Otherworld Series is set in a mystical land inhabited by many races, including faeries, vampires, lycanthropes, phantoms and gods. Unfortunately, the constant battles between these warring dynasties threaten to spill over into the mortal realm.

Jane’s series for Harlequin Romantic Suspense, Sons of Stillwater, will be coming soon. 

Jane also writes steamy historical romance for Samhain Publishing and her Georgian Rebel Series features compelling heroes who fight hard for the cause they believe in and harder for the women they love.

In 2017, Jane has a new paranormal romance series coming from SMP Swerve.
Watch out for her hot Arctic werewolves!

Jane lives in Cheshire, England, is married to a lovely man and is mum to two grown up children.



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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Interview - All the Wounds in Shadow by Anise Eden





Do you title the book first or wait until after it’s complete? 

Typically, I have a working title while I’m drafting, but it’s really just a mental placeholder. Usually it’s something that refers to a prominent detail in the book, like “Psychic Headache.” Once we get closer to production, I start looking for themes or phrases in the book, make lists, move words around, and try different things on for size. Then I run ideas by my agent and editor, and we work with them until a final title emerges. For The Healing Edge Series, I developed all three book titles at once to make sure that they worked well both together and separately.

 Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? 

I imagine that each individual reader will take different things from my books. However, some of the themes that run through All the Wounds in Shadow are the power of love to transcend all barriers, our need to trust and lean on one another, and the transformative power of forgiveness.

 What books/authors have influenced your life? 

Early on, Madeline L’Engle drew me in to the worlds of science fiction and fantasy with the Wrinkle in Time series. As an adult, Charlaine Harris’s Sookie Stackhouse series introduced me to the combination of contemporary and paranormal fiction with romance. Since then, I’ve become an avid reader of all types of romance, but paranormal remains my favorite.

What book are you reading now? 

I’m reading Diana Gabaldon’s Dragonfly in Amber, the second book in the Outlander series. I’m completely addicted to Outlander, and love the TV adaptation, as well. Sadly, I’ve been stalled in the middle for a while due to deadlines, but I’m anxious to get back to it.

What is your current “work in progress” or upcoming projects? 

Right now, I’m polishing the third book in The Healing Edge series, All the Light There Is, which is coming out in Spring/Summer 2017. This is the enticing conclusion to the trilogy, bringing all of the members of the MacGregor Group together to face the rise of an ominous danger. Meanwhile, Cate and Ben continue on the journey of their tender yet tumultuous new romance. I can’t wait to share it with readers!

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing? 

Eyebrows. I find that in life, eyebrows say so much, but there are a limited number of ways to describe their movements. Finding original ways to capture eyebrow nuances, along with other facial expressions and gestures, takes up more of my time than you might think possible.

Do you have any advice for other writers? 

I’m still in the early part of the learning curve with regards to writing and publishing, so when asked to give advice to other writers, I usually share advice that has helped me. I have a loud inner critic, so I’m drawn to ideas about how to quiet that voice, particularly when writing a first draft. One quote I just recently read that resonated with me is by John Green, author of The Fault in Our Stars, on writer’s block: “I just give myself permission to suck. I delete about 90 percent of my first drafts … so it doesn’t really matter much if on a particular day I write beautiful and brilliant prose that will stick in the minds of my readers forever, because there’s a 90 percent chance I’m just gonna delete whatever I write anyway. I find this hugely liberating.”

Do you have a song or playlist (book soundtrack) that you think represents this book? 

Yes! Here is my playlist for All the Wounds in Shadow:
“One And Only” – Adele
“Dindi” – Joseh Garcia 
“I'll Be Seeing You” - Billie Holiday
“Fight Song” - Rachel Platten
“My Baby Just Cares for Me” - Nina Simone
“I'm Kissing You” - Des'ree “Sabotage” - Beastie Boys
“It Had to Be You” - Frank Sinatra




All the Wounds in Shadow
The Healing Edge
Book Two
Anise Eden

Genre: Paranormal Romance/Romantic Suspense

Publisher: Diversion Publishing

Date of Publication: August 23, 2016

ISBN:  978-1682302873
ASIN: B01G5Y6GO8

Number of pages: 240
Word Count: 81,645

Book Description:

For fans of Karen Robards and Shiloh Walker, Anise Eden brings us the mesmerizing sequel to her paranormal romantic suspense novel All the Broken Places.

Cate's enemies aren't just surrounding her―they're inside her head.

Therapist Cate Duncan has just accepted a job with the MacGregor Group, a unique collective of alternative healers. She’s excited by the prospect of honing her empathic healing techniques among others like herself―aura readers, telepaths, crystal healers, and more. The fact that Cate just started dating Ben, her magnetic new boss, is an added bonus.

Before Cate can settle into her new routine, the poisoning of a prominent neuroscientist draws the entire MacGregor Group into both a federal investigation and an even more insidious threat. Protected by Ben’s former Marine Corps unit, Cate and her colleagues must use their alternative healing methods to solve the crime as their patient clings to life. The responsibility of discovering crucial information falls to Cate and her parapsychological powers.

But for Cate, unraveling the mystery means reopening wounds that had just begun to heal―and in the environment of the Marine Corps unit, differences between Cate and Ben become clearer, straining their budding romance. When a new crisis looms, Cate must trust in her colleagues’ gifts and the strength of Ben’s love, finding the courage to confront her deepest and most terrifying demons―or her own life will be at risk.



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ALL THE WOUNDS IN SHADOW – Excerpt #1
by Anise Eden

In my dream, only the crabs’ lives were in jeopardy. Mom and I chose a spot on the pier that was shaded by a nearby oak, hoping for some relief from the humid heat. The buzzing and clicking of crickets and cicadas swelled as the summer afternoon ripened.
“Hold it perfectly still, Catie,” Mom whispered. “We want them to think it’s just a strange-looking plant.”
“I’m trying.” But after an hour, my arm ached from holding the crab net steady. “Maybe the bait isn’t rotten enough to attract them.”
Mom jiggled the string with the chicken neck tied to the end, making it dance just beneath the water’s surface. “Should I pull it out so you can check it?”
“Ew, gross!” I grimaced. “No thanks. I believe you.”
Suddenly, her whole body tensed. “Look, there’s one!”
The water was green and nearly opaque with algae. Staring down, I could just make out the ghostly limbs of a blue crab swimming up toward the bait.
“Wait until he’s really absorbed in what he’s doing and then scoop him up,” she murmured. “Not too quickly, though. You don’t want to scare him.”
“Right.” Once the crab started attacking the chicken neck, I slid the net beneath him and slowly lifted it to the surface.
“You got him!” Mom jumped to her feet. “Pull him out, and let’s have a look!”
“He feels really heavy!” We exchanged smiles of victory as I raised the dripping net up to eye level.
“Oh, no,” Mom said. “It’s beautiful, a great catch. But we have to throw it back.”
“Don’t say that!” I moaned. “Why?”
“It’s a female. It’s poisonous.”
I examined the crab. She was right: it had a full, rounded apron. With a sigh, I tossed the crab back into the water. “Females aren’t poisonous, Mom, just illegal to catch. You know that.”
“Whatever you say.” Mom walked over to the edge of the pier and turned around to face me. “I have to go now. Don’t follow me.” Before I could even grasp what she was doing, she had folded her arms across her chest, closed her eyes, and tilted her stiffened body backwards into the water.
“Mom!” I leapt forward, reaching the edge of the pier just as she hit the surface with a sharp splash. Remembering my lifeguard training, I got down on my belly, lay on the wooden planks, and thrust my arm into the water. But she was already out of reach.
I grabbed the crab net and plunged the handle down towards her, but she kept her arms folded, eyes closed. “Mom, grab the handle!” I cried out, but she kept sinking. Within seconds she was nothing more than a whitish blur.
“Don’t worry! I’m coming!” Screw lifeguard training, I thought as I kicked off my shoes and prepared to go in after her. But just as I was about to dive, something dragged me backwards by the waist.
I looked down to find a man’s arm wrapped around me—a man’s arm in a blue suit jacket. A familiar voice said, “Oh no you don’t.”
“Ben, let go of me!” I struggled to free myself from his hold. Then I realized that I was yelling out loud, awake and in bed, thrashing about and wrestling with the python of sheets tangled around me. My cell phone beeped and vibrated along the surface of the bedside table as the alarm went off. Meanwhile, my heart pounded in my throat. In my mind’s eye, all I could see was my mother sinking further and further into the river.
Goddammit, I thought, vigorously rubbing the tears from my eyes. Would my dreams ever stop transforming into nightmares—reminders that I had failed to see that my mother was in crisis, that I had failed to save her ?
I strained to hear Ben bounding up the stairs to see what the yelling was about, but there was only silence. Had I only cried out in my dream? “Ben?” I called, loudly enough for him to hear me if he was awake. Still no response.
So he was still asleep. That was odd. Ben told me he’d never lost the early-riser habit he had developed in the Marine Corps. I turned off my cell phone alarm, put on my robe and slippers, and padded down the stairs. But he wasn’t on the sofa, where I’d left him the night before. In fact, he was nowhere.
I scanned the first floor of my tiny row house and found a note he’d left on the coffee table. “Had to go in early. See you at work. Bring a bag packed for a few days.”
Well, that’s cryptic, I thought as a bud of irritation formed. I flopped down on the couch and breathed slowly, trying to bring my heart rate back down to normal after the dream I’d had. “Bring a bag packed for a few days.” But packed for what? Given how focused he was on my training, I somehow doubted that Ben was planning a romantic getaway.
I tried Ben’s cell. No answer. I tried Pete’s cell. Again, no answer. Whatever was happening at the office, it must have been keeping them both occupied.
At least I had another way to find out what was going on with Ben. I sat cross-legged on the couch. With my hands resting on my knees, I closed my eyes and took a few slow, deep breaths. Then I pictured the filament of light that connected my heart to Ben’s, and focused my mind.
In an instant, the psychic portal between us opened. As my consciousness reached out and touched his, I fell back against the couch, struck by the intensity of his emotions. He was worried about something or someone, and there was a definite sense of urgency. Still, there was no actual fear. That told me that while some kind of crisis was going on, at least Ben was safe.
Then his feelings for me crashed through the portal, flooding me. Whatever else he was dealing with, I was on his mind. Once again I was overwhelmed by the strength of his feelings. Although I knew the portal only flowed one way, I tried to send my own feelings back in his direction. I pulled my consciousness back into my body and opened my eyes.
My gaze immediately settled upon my right hand, and the exquisite ring Ben had given me the day before. The gold band was carved to look like two birds in flight, holding a luminous round piece of Scottish agate with their beaks and the tips of their wings. He’d wanted to give me something concrete to remind me of how he felt about me when he wasn’t there, to reassure me when I had worries or doubts. A soft warmth bloomed in my chest as I twirled the ring slowly around my finger, admiring its craftsmanship. We’d agreed that I would decide when to tell people that the ring was from him—and that we were dating. In the meantime, we were keeping both things a secret. I wasn’t quite ready to go public with our new relationship, and Ben didn’t want me to feel any pressure.
As I went upstairs and laid my suitcase open on the bed, I thought about my disturbing dream. My mother’s fall into the water was obviously a reference to her suicide three months before. But the poisonous female crab? And Ben stopping me from saving someone’s life? I knew he didn’t like it when I put myself in danger, but he’d never just let someone drown.
Then again, maybe there’s nothing to decipher, I told myself. Sometimes a dream is just a dream. I tried to content myself with that thought as I showered, dressed, and packed in a hurry. I was anxious to get to the office and find out where we were going—and what crisis had made Ben leave that morning without so much as giving me a kiss good-bye.







About the Author:

Author Anise Eden writes The Healing Edge paranormal romantic suspense series for Diversion Books. She spends most of her time tucked away in her writing nook imagining things that aren’t there. On those rare occasions when she emerges from seclusion, Anise may be spotted in coffee shops, staring at her laptop screen and silently moving her lips as she reviews bits of dialogue. Although Anise claims that she’s the one in charge, the characters in her head do sometimes make her laugh out loud at inappropriate moments.

Visit her online at http://aniseeden.com





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Monday, August 22, 2016

Interview - Truthsong by Elisabeth Hamill




Do you write in different genres?

I write primarily fantasy and science fiction. Usually, there’s at least a mild element of romance to the story.

If yes which is your favorite genre to write? 

Fantasy seems to be my most prolific genre, but I’m starting to re-discover my love for science fiction.


Do you title the book first or wait until after it’s complete?

I always have a working title, but I wait until it’s finished before I make that final. I had originally titled this one LORD OF THE WOOD, but as I got in, I realized that the third book should have that title.


What books/authors have influenced your life?

My sixth grade teacher, Mrs. Moon, read Lloyd Alexander’s THE BOOK OF THREE out loud to our class. I was hooked immediately and read the rest of the series. Then, my dad gave me a copy of JRR Tolkien’s THE HOBBIT when I was about eleven. That cemented my obsession! Some of my favorite authors are Marion Zimmer Bradley, David Brin, Ursula LeGuin, Madeleine L’Engle, Nina Kiriki Hoffman and Zenna Henderson. 



What is your current “work in progress” or upcoming projects?

I am currently writing an adult sci-fi called DALI. The story takes place about two hundred years in the future as a third gender for the human race has emerged. It’s largely a space opera/adventure, with allegorical issues similar to those faced by the transgender community. My main character, Dali, can choose their gender.

Can you share a little of your current work with us?

Every night I stood over the graves of my husband and wife. I screamed until my throat bled, and scarlet fell like rubies into the mounded silt of lunar soil. I knew it was a dream, because they didn’t have graves. None of the victims did.

I didn’t sleep much anymore. Instead, I prowled the underbelly of Rosetta.

There’s a place on every space station no one admits to knowing about, ignored by the crew because it keeps the ugliness from spilling over into public areas. Spacers who haven’t seen planetside for a long time get…hungry. On Rosetta Station, the place they go to satisfy their hunger is The Labyrinth. It’s a maze of ducts, plumbing, supply lines and tanks that constitute the veins and arteries of the station, running under the metal skin of the bottom level. Beneath my feet, less than an arms-width away, lay the vacuum of space, frigid and infinite. 



Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

Finding time! I’m a hospice nurse in my non-writing life. I get up early on my days off to write when nobody else is awake. I guard my time like a sleep-deprived dragon. It’s important to me.



Do you have to travel much to do research for your books?

Only in my own head! That is one of the best things about writing fantasy and science fiction. Worldbuilding is tricky, but how else will you travel through time, to other planets, or to mythical realms? If my writing doesn’t make pictures in my own head, it won’t for my readers either. I take those mental trips as often as I can, LOL.

Who designed the cover of your latest book?

Caroline Andrus did both covers for the Songmaker books. She is so easy to work with, and an expert at channeling the atmosphere of the books into a cover.


Truthsong
Songmaker
Book 2
Elisabeth Hamill

Genre: YA Fantasy

Publisher: Fire and Ice YA

Date of Publication:  July 26, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-68046-326-2

Number of pages: 236
Word Count: 80K

Cover Artist: Caroline Andrus

Book Description:

The long awaited sequel to SONG MAGICK

When Telyn’s song magic freed ancient spirits of the Wood, it also awakened a long-slumbering evil. Now she and her beloved Mithrais must battle a spreading shadow that ignites crippling fear, and deal with the unexpected consequences of magic’s return.

More danger arrives with a royal delegation to the forest realm, sweeping Telyn back into court intrigue and the sights of a murderous lord. Mithrais may be forced to choose between his service to the Wood or the obligations of his royal blood.

As Telyn’s bond with Mithrais grows, she is torn between her love for him and the freedom of a wandering bard’s life. But when dark magic plunges the Wood into chaos, she must balance the two halves of her heart—or the Fates may take Mithrais from her forever. 

Amazon     Smashwords     BN    Fire and Ice
Excerpt 2:
“Old One?” He kept his voice soft. “What’s out there?”
            “Fear.” The sprite cocked its head and never took its eyes from the darkness. On the fringes of the grove where Mithrais’ light did not reach, the shadows were thick and impenetrable.
            Something blacker than night moved against the trees.
            His breath and pulse quickened with a primal terror he’d never known. A new reflex took hold. Power leapt to await the cast of a spell without his conscious assent, and he tamped it down. Cold sweat broke out on his forehead.
            “You are safe, Magian,” the sprite murmured. “It cannot stand against us in this form, although it can make itself known.”
            “What is it?” Mithrais could not tear his gaze from that terrible nothingness.
            “A projection of what was once vanquished, long ago. A creature of elemental form. It has no shape of its own. It simply is.”
            “What does it want?”
            “To be free, within a shell of flesh. There, it can wreak the havoc it once fed upon.”
            Mithrais fought to replace fear with reason and action, but it slowed his thoughts. With supreme effort, he turned his focus to the magical knowledge the Gwaith’orn had imprinted upon his mind. “How do we defend against it?”
            “It is yet contained. Some things are best left alone.” The sprite looked at him at last. “It can do nothing but spread fear in this form, but that is how it draws a vessel to it.”
“This form is only a projection?” He did not want to imagine facing what produced this fearsome shadow in the dark.
“It will fade with the light. Breathe, Magian.”
The light… Mithrais seized the lantern from the front of the wagon and thrust it in front of him. The magelight flashed in blinding, silver-blue radiance, a captive star in the depths of the Wood. It dispelled the darkness in the grove, and the dark shape fled to slip between the trees until it was out of reach of the magelight.
The terror fled as well, leaving him hollow as it drained from his body. He could think again and was deeply troubled. Around him, small sounds of night began to re-emerge—crickets, the trill of a frog on the river’s edge. He allowed the light to fade to its previous pale glow and attempted to wrap his mind around this encounter. First dragons, and now dread shapes in the night: What else had been wrought in the wake of the spell Telyn and the Magians cast in the Circle?
“Mithrais?” Telyn’s sleepy voice sounded from the wagon. “Is something wrong?”
“I’m not certain.” It was as if the dark shape had never existed. Even the sprite had disappeared when he turned around and looked for it. He hung the lantern back on the front of the wagon and reclaimed the space beside his lifemate.
“You’re shivering.” Telyn moved closer and wrapped her arms about him. “I was having a nightmare.”
“So was I.” But his had been waking.
“Too many ghost stories from Kendric and the sprite, I think.” She sighed and relaxed again into sleep. But Mithrais lay awake until dawn’s approach outshone the light of his spell.



About the Author:

Elisabeth Hamill is a nurse/wife/mom by day, unabashed geek/chocoholic/closet sci fi and fantasy novelist by night. She lives with her family, dog, and cat in the wilds of eastern suburban Kansas, where they fend off flying monkey attacks and prep for the zombie apocalypse.

Song Magick, her first novel, won first in category for Teen Fantasy in the 2014 Dante Rossetti Awards for Young Adult Fiction.




https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8180891.Elisabeth_Hamill

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