Tuesday, December 16, 2014

'Fusion: An Anthology' by some of your favorite bestselling authors!

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FusionHR Authors: Shannon Mayer, Denise Grover Swank, Addison Moore, Shelly Crane, Amy Bartol, Eve Langlais, Stephanie Erickson, Jesi Lea Ryan, JC Andrijeski

NEW from HIJINKS INK PUBLISHING…..

FUSION: Nine outstanding fantasy stories merged together to create a bestselling reaction.

An anthology designed for readers of fantasy . . . Paranormal, urban/contemporary fantasy, science fiction and dystopian fused together in one epic fantasy bundle. Make your way through fire and ice, love, lust and hate as NINE International Bestselling Authors come together to spin their tales of magic and destruction. This is a truly unique bundle that successfully blends all aspects of the Fantasy genre.

 

Buy on Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Kobo | Smashwords

 

"ELEMENTALLY PRICELESS" an EXCLUSIVE Novella by SHANNON MAYER (International Bestselling Author)

Urban Fantasy, Heat Rating: 2

"My name is Rylee, and I am a Tracker."

A missing child, a deadly prophecy, and a world of unusual supernaturals slam together in this EXCLUSIVE novella from Shannon Mayer. Meet Rylee, a Tracker of missing children, and Lark, an Earth Elemental as they tackle a case neither could crack on their own dodging the world of the supernatural and FBI alike. Separate, they are deadly, strong, and determined. Together, they are unstoppable. Or so they think.

"ETHEREAL (Celestra Series, Book 1)" by ADDISON MOORE (NY Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author)

YA Paranormal Romance, Heat Rating: 2

The Celestra Series has been optioned for film by 20th CENTURY FOX

Sixteen year-old, Skyla Messenger is a dead girl walking. With her life in upheaval, she finds refuge in Logan Oliver, a boy who shares her unique ability to read minds and has knowledge she desires. If only he would share. Skyla’s bloodlines to angelic beings may not be able to save her from those who want her dead, but Skyla is nowhere near done living --- and she’s not going down without a fight.

"HERE (On the Otherside Series, Book 1)" by DENISE GROVER SWANK (NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author)

YA Science Fiction, Heat Rating: 2

Sixteen year old Julia Phillips buries herself in guilt after killing her best friend in a car accident. But guilt can’t explain how she can suddenly draw, has false memories of the accident and how a bracelet engraved with her name ended at the scene. Suddenly, Evan Whittaker is interested in her and her life. Why he was missing for two days and returns wearing a pendant she’s been drawing for months leads the two on a journey to find out how Monica is still alive and just where Even is really from.

"INESCAPABLE (The Premonition Series, Book 1)" by AMY BARTOL (International Bestselling Author)

YA Paranormal Romance, Heat Rating: 2

I’m Evie and this was to be the making of me-my first year of college. I’d hoped that once I’d arrived at Crestwood, the nightmare that I’ve been having would go away. It hasn’t. At 17, I may be inexperienced, but I’m sane. When Reed is near, however, nothing makes any sense. He’s not what he seems to be…and neither am I. I’m afraid that the nightmare my dream is foretelling is…inescapable.  

"THE CURE” by STEPHANIE ERICKSON (Bestselling Author)

YA Dystopian, Heat Rating: 1

“One life will make the difference.” Macey Holsinger has heard that phrase her whole life, in the name of fighting a disease that has claimed so many lives. How much will she be willing to sacrifice in the name of the cure?

"UPRISING (A Collide Novel, Book 2)" by SHELLY CRANE (NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author)

YA Science Fiction, Heat Rating: 2

Sherry and Merrick come face to face with old friends and new enemies in this sequel to Collide. When a little girl is found, things change for everyone and loyalties will be tested. New romances, drama and rivalries may upset the delicate balance they established while transformations on both sides of good and evil will arise as the series continues.

"ARCADIA’S GIFT (Arcadia Series, Book 1)" by JESI LEA RYAN (Bestselling Author)

YA Paranormal, Heat Rating: 2

When teenager Arcadia Day wakes in a hospital after what can only be described as a psychic episode, she finds her family in tatters. As her home life crumbles and her emotional control slips away, she begins to suspect that her first psychic experience was just the beginning.  

"BIRTH (Allie’s War, Early Years)” by J.C. Andrijeski (Bestselling Author)

Contemporary Fantasy, Heat Rating: 4

High in mountain caves, surrounded by kind-hearted monks, the shadow of the Rooks hangs over Revik’s head, a constant reminder of the dark warrior he used to be. When strange, militant Seers appear, asking for his help, his first impulse is to say no...until he learns it is Kali who needs saving… the one person he cannot refuse.

"WICKEDEST WITCH” by EVE LANGLAIS (New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author)

Paranormal Romance, Heat Rating: 4

Evangeline is not a very nice witch, and she’s not afraid to show it. She lands a job where she is forced to work with a rude, cocky and totally unsuitable shifter. Despite it all, she can’t help craving his touch. When Ryker is partnered with the witch, he does everything he can to fight her allure. And fails. Vampires, a wedding from hell, and a cackling boss make this an action packed and humorous romance to remember.  




About the authors:

Shannon Mayer:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ShannonMayerAuthor
Website: http://www.shannonmayer.com/
Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/CNe8T

Author Bio:
Shannon Mayer lives in the southwestern tip of Canada with her husband, dog, cats, horse, and cows. When not writing she spends her time staring at immense amounts of rain, herding old people (similar to herding cats) and attempting to stay out of trouble. Especially that last is difficult for her.

She is the author of the The Rylee Adamson Novels, The Nevermore Trilogy, A Celtic Legacy series and several contemporary romances. Please visit her website at http://www.shannonmayer.com for more information on her novels.

Addison Moore:
Website: http://addisonmoorewrites.blogspot.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Addison-Moore/140192649382294
Newsletter Sign Up: http://blogspot.us6.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=75b60ef733&id=b8bbf0dd80

Author Bio:
Addison Moore is a New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author who writes contemporary and paranormal romance. Her work has been featured in Cosmopolitan Magazine. Previously she worked as a therapist on a locked psychiatric unit for nearly a decade. She resides on the West Coast with her husband, four wonderful children, and two dogs where she eats too much chocolate and stays up way too late. When she's not writing, she's reading. Addison’s Celestra Series has been optioned for film by 20th Century Fox.

Denise Grover Swank:
Website: www.denisegroverswank.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/deniseswank
Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/j9OQj

Author Bio:
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Denise Grover Swank was born in Kansas City, Missouri and lived in the area until she was nineteen. Then she became a nomadic gypsy, living in five cities, four states and ten houses over the course of ten years before she moved back to her roots.

She speaks English and smattering of Spanish and Chinese which she learned through an intensive Nick Jr. immersion period. Her hobbies include witty Facebook comments (in own her mind) and dancing in her kitchen with her children. (Quite badly if you believe her offspring.)

Hidden talents include the gift of justification and the ability to drink massive amounts of caffeine and still fall asleep within two minutes. Her lack of the sense of smell allows her to perform many unspeakable tasks. She has six children and hasn't lost her sanity. Or so she leads you to believe.

You can find out more about Denise at www.denisegroverswank.com or email her at DeniseGroverSwank@gmail.com.

Amy Bartol:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authoramyabartol
Website: http://www.amyabartol.com/

Author Bio:
Amy A. Bartol is the award-winning and bestselling author of the Premonition Series, which includes: Inescapable, Intuition, Indebted, Incendiary and Iniquity. She has also written the Kricket Series, which includes: Under Different Stars, Sea of Stars, and Darken the Stars. She lives in Michigan with her husband and two sons. Visit her at her website: http://www.amyabartol.com

Stephanie Erickson:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/stephmerickson
Website: http://www.stephanieericksonbooks.com/
Newsletter Sign Up: http://www.stephanieericksonbooks.com/thanks-for-reading/

Author Bio:
Stephanie Erickson has always had a passion for the written word. She pursued her love of literature at Flagler College, in St. Augustine, FL, where she graduated with a BA in English Literature. She has received several honors in her writing career, including recognition in the 72nd Annual Writer's Digest Competition.

After graduation, she married and followed her husband in pursuit of his dream. The Cure and The Blackout were written to reignite Stephanie's passion, when she found the time. Now that he is settled in his career, it's her turn to devote more time and energy into writing. Unseen, released in November, is her first book since she started writing full time.

Stephanie has three projects planned for 2015. Her next release is well underway and is slated for a March, 2015 publication date, with the sequel to Unseen—Unforgiven—slated for release in July.

Stephanie, of course, loves to read and write. She also enjoys living on the beach on Florida's Treasure Coast. Most of all, she and her husband are head over heels in love with their baby girl.

Shelly Crane:
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/shellycranefanpage
Website : http://shellycrane.blogspot.com/

Author Bio:
Shelly is a NEW YORK TIMES & USA TODAY bestselling author from a small town in Georgia and loves everything about the south. She is wife to a fantastical husband and stay-at-home mom to two boisterous and mischievous boys who keep her on her toes. She hoards paperbacks, devours sweet tea, searches year-round for candy corn, and loves to spend time with her family and friends, go out to eat at new restaurants, site-see in the new areas they travel to, listen to music, and, of course, loves to read, but doesn’t have much time to these days with all the characters filling her head begging to come out.

Her own books happen by accident and she revels in the writing and imagination process. She doesn't go anywhere without her notepad for fear of an idea creeping up and not being able to write it down immediately, even in the middle of the night, where her best ideas are born.

Jesi Lea Ryan:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jesi-Lea-Ryan/152086598147945
Website: http://www.jesilea.com/
Newsletter Sign Up: http://jesilea.us8.list-manage2.com/subscribe?u=f64bf4e1a803d3df961f0a6da&id=d5961348b5

Author Bio:
Jesi Lea Ryan grew up in the Mississippi River town of Dubuque, IA. She holds bachelor degrees in creative writing and literature and a masters degree in business. She considers herself a well-rounded nerd who can spend hours on the internet researching things like British history, anthropology of ancient people, geography of random parts of the world, bad tattoos and the paranormal. She currently lives in Madison, WI with her husband and two exceptionally naughty kitties.

JC Andrijeski:
JC’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/J.C.Andrijeski
JC’s newsletter sign up link: http://tinyurl.com/JCAndrijeski
JC’s Website: http://jcandrijeski.com

Author Bio:
JC Andrijeski writes urban fantasy, dystopian and paranormal romance. Current works include the gritty, epic, urban fantasy series, Allie’s War, which follows Allie Taylor and her antihero partner, Revik, in their attempts to save the world from a dark, psychic force bent on controlling Earth. She also has a new adult dystopian series, Alien Apocalypse about Jet Tetsuo, survivor and slave under alien conquerors, and the Gate Shifter series, about a shape-shifting alien and a tough-girl PI.

She also writes crime fiction, children’s and some literary under different names, although her first love will always be of the supernatural, especially when it involves kick-ass superpowers and people fighting for the light and against their own inner demons.

JC currently lives and writes full time in Bangkok, Thailand, although she tends to get itchy feet on a fairly regular basis, so can’t quite commit to that as a final resting place...

Eve Langlais:
Website: http://www.EveLanglais.com/
Newsletter sign up: http://www.evelanglais.com/newrelease
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/eve.langlais.98

Author Bio:
Hello, my name is Eve and I am a Canadian author who pens steamy romance--usually with shapeshifters, cyborgs or aliens lol.

I love to write, and while I don't always know what my mind is going to come up with next, I can promise it will be fun, probably humorous, and most of all romantic because I love a happily ever after.

I look forward to seeing you again, whether online or between the pages of a book.  

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Huge Prize pack and signed paperbacks from the authors giveaway! Ends 1/2/2015 at 11:59pm EST. Fill out the form below.

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Monday, December 15, 2014

Review of 'A Date to Die For' by Bonnie R. Paulson

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A Date to Die for: 1-4 $2.99

Release Day - A Date to Die for: 5, 6, & 7: Dirty Twist, Check Mate, & Last Chance On Sale $.99!!

3dDate to Die for: Series

#1 When dating ends in deaths and threats, Molly might be better off staying single. During one of Molly’s weekly meet-ups with her girls at their regular bar, Molly succumbs to the duress of her two best friends and begins the aggressive dating they sign her up for online where the pairings are questionable... and dangerous. They’ve entered her in an evening of speed dating. But at the end of the evening she finds an item from her past that raises questions, grief... and danger.

When the number of deaths surpass Molly’s goodnight kisses, her past pushes into the present and Molly loses much more than she gains. A stalker has focused on Molly and refuses to let anyone else date her. But she refuses to be single for the rest of her life.

Is Molly doomed to a life of singledom wrapped in fear - or will the stalker turn on her?

Get this episode on Amazon.

#2, Oh No, He Didn’t!

Molly is ready to meet up with her first date – Crisco Ethan. But first she has to survive threats at work and fear at home. Will Brad-the-bartender make a move or flirt from afar? The stalker is closing in and Molly has a terrible feeling she won’t stay untouched for long. Can she lean on Brad or is her heart pushing her toward danger?  

#3 Dinner for Two

Getting ready to message her next date, Molly comes across an email from the stalker that might tear her apart. The aftereffects swallow her sanity and she struggles to stay in the everyday while battling the knowledge that he can find her anywhere. Nowhere is safe.

Is Brad as involved as circumstances suggest? Or is a man out there that wants nothing more than to keep her all to himself – dead or alive?  

#4 Don’t Look Back!

At work, a special delivery slams home the seriousness of the situation. How many more lives will be affected by the man’s obsession with Molly? Molly’s stalker attacks close to home.

Can she find safety? Can anyone?  

#5 Dirty Twist

The stakes are high and Molly has learned how desperate her stalker has made her. Tormented with more kidnappings and deaths, Molly searches for answers in all the wrong places. Will she find what she’s looking for? Or will her fear continue to paralyze her, leaving her open for the ultimate end?

#6 Check Mate

What precautions can a single girl take to protect herself from a sociopath? Why, move in with the crush and bring his ass in to play the game, of course. Even with all the bravado, Molly still learns she has a lot more to lose. Can she come back from the turmoil? Or is she doomed to misery for the rest of her short life?

#7 Last Chance

In a desperate attempt to save someone she cares about, Molly faces her would-be killer.

But who it is devastates her. If the killer has their way, Molly will die at their side.

Can Molly escape or will she finally be on a Date to Die for?

**My thoughts**

Bonnie R. Paulson is one of my favorite current authors, because she has a knack for taking a common storyline and twisting it around into something original and exciting. In this series, Molly is being haunted by the unsolved murder of her twin sister. And now it looks like he is coming after her. It is someone who knows her every move, as she keeps finding tokens left behind and he keeps super close tabs on her. Those who are closest to her are also in danger, but sometimes it seems as if one of them could be her stalker.

I like Molly and her friends. They are very real and seem to have a great sense of humor, despite all of the craziness. I can feel Molly's despair as the stalker moves closer and closer. It makes me crazy that she isn't as forthcoming with authorities as she should be. She also gets somewhat reckless at times, trying to survive, but I almost can't blame her in those weakened moments. I also seriously hate her parents.

The story is told quickly, in seven short episodes. That made for super fast reading and an entertaining way to pass a couple of hours. Some aspects of the story, I wish we could know more about, but they were almost irrelevant to the story at hand. I just felt like I wanted a bit more from this, but at the same time would still recommend it to anyone wanting to read a gripping suspense. The plot twists are fun and you are unlikely to guess who the stalker really is. I had a few suspects in mind along the way and was really surprised at the revelation. In fact, I even want to go back and reread the series, to see if I can find some clues as to his identity any earlier.

So, go ahead and grab these titles and then also check out her other books. You won't be disappointed.

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Monday, December 8, 2014

'Flammable Felony' by Sophia Sapphire

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IMG_0584.JPGThis fast-paced adventure begins when Jared sets out to help a former high school acquaintance, Teresa, investigate the actual circumstances around her grandmother’s spontaneous combustion death. Her Forensic science training throws her in Jared’s path, where his police academy training could be valuable. Has his willingness to help his old school crush only put her in more danger? The more they work together, the more questions they find. Who has been following them and why? Why is Teresa seeing white flashes of light in her apartment and who is the intruder leaving bizarre notes on her den desk? Why are the intruder’s fingerprints impossible to decipher? The closer they come to exposing the truth, the closer they come to losing their lives.



Buy on Kindle | Paperback


About the author:

IMG_0586.JPG Sophia Sapphire is my pen name, and I grew up in the South with my twin sister. I have since lived in Virginia, Kentucky and North Carolina, where my forensic science training and crime lab experiences inspire the development of my fiction mystery stories. In between working full-time in a regulatory profession, mothering two sons, and writing, I make time for the other essential part of life - chocolate.

Because I love to read fast-paced mystery novels, I write my books to grab the reader and strive to cater to their needs. I'm happy to announce the release of my next mystery thriller, "Flammable Felony."

Amazon author page | Literary Addicts



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Thursday, December 4, 2014

Review of 'Favors and Lies' by Mark Gilleo

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Favors & LiesDan Lord is a forty-year-old private detective with a law degree working the blurred line between right and wrong in the Nation’s Capital. As a self-employed solutions broker and legal consultant, he works for a very select clientele. He doesn’t advertise and only takes cases on referral. But when two people close to him are murdered, Dan’s work becomes very personal.

With the assistance of a newly hired female intern, extracting clues from a ladder of acquaintances, Dan bounds through both the underbelly and elite of society, each step bringing more questions and yet ultimately taking him closer to the answer he seeks. A bail bondsman, a recluse hacker, a court clerk, a university student, an old-school barber, a high-class madam, an intelligence officer, a medical doctor, and a police detective are among the list of people Dan must cajole for help. His quest will lead him to discover things he never wanted to know, and put him in the position to reveal things that important people would prefer remain unrevealed.

Tense, ingenious, and filled with the unforgettable characters, Favors and Lies is Mark Gilleo’s most thrilling novel yet.

Buy on Amazon | Website


**My thoughts**

Favors and Lies captures your attention from the very beginning and keeps you completely engrossed throughout the entire read. The characters have depth and are very real, making you feel like you know them in person. The descriptions are detailed enough to help you visualize every scene, even if you have never been to Washington, D.C. I felt like I was right there with Dan, every step along the way. I could see what he saw, smell what he smelled, felt what he felt.

Intricate plot twists keep you on your toes as more and more is revealed. Once you think you have something figured out, you may find out you are wrong. The secrets and lies get deeper and deeper. It is scary to think that this could happen in real life, as well.

This was a book that I had to read slowly, not because it is difficult to read, but because I wanted to savor every part of it. I had been longing for a good mystery for a while, and this one truly fit the bill. I give it 4.5 stars and really want to check out some of Gilleo's other work.



Read an excerpt from the book:
The cab pulled to the curb on one of the city’s myriad one-way streets and Dan spoke through the holes drilled in the security glass. “What’s the damage?”

“Nineteen even.”

Dan stepped from the back of the cab and slipped a twenty through the front passenger window. “Keep the change.”

“Thanks, big spender,” the burly driver replied, shoving the cash into the front pocket of his sweaty shirt.

Dan bent at the waist, his manila folder in hand, and peered into the open window. The glare from Dan’s light-blue eyes melted the driver’s bravado, bringing long-sought momentary silence to the interior of the car. The cabbie muttered something unintelligible and the car pulled away from the curb into evening rush-hour traffic.

Dan straightened his dark blue suit and his red tie before heading down H Street. The business side of the White House sat just beyond Lafayette Square to his left. As a white male in a suit, within spitting distance of the White House, Dan was perfectly camouflaged. Despite the changing face of American society and the dual terms of President Obama, those making the rules remained largely as it always had been – lily white. An hour watching C-Span was the only proof needed.

Dan walked deliberately to the corner of H and 16th streets and silently mingled with a half-dozen likeminded suits waiting for the light. The pedestrian signal changed from an illuminated red hand to the depiction of a person walking. The crowd moved. Dan took three steps toward the street and then froze at the edge of the curb. He scanned his environment for a mirror reaction from anyone in the vicinity. Sometimes the best way to see if you are being followed is to stop. It was a standard counter-surveillance move, likely perfected a hundred thousand years ago by an animal on the Serengeti trying to avoid becoming dinner.

The sidewalk around Dan emptied as the pedestrian signal on the far side of the street began to count down. Dan swiveled his head slowly, finishing with a glance over each shoulder. No one, he thought. At least no one on foot. Walking against traffic on a one-way street mitigated most of the possibilities of being trailed by car.

He waited until the countdown on the pedestrian signal reached five and then crossed the street illegally in the opposite direction, dissecting a group of lawyers and think-tankers on their way to a local watering hole to finish their briefs and pontifications for the evening.

On the far side of the street Dan turned right and headed back in the direction from which he came. Once again he checked for surveillance. Nothing.

Near the end of the block, with a taxi queue ten yards ahead, Dan checked his watch with a casual glance and turned left down an alley without looking back.

He passed several dumpsters and looked up at the darkening sky framed by the buildings on both sides of the alley. A light scent of urine wafted through the air. Under a fire escape near the corner of the building Dan turned again. He followed a staircase downward, his hand running along a worn metal handrail, his shoes trampling cracked concrete steps. Three stories above the urban crevasse, room rates started at eight hundred a night.

Dan forced himself to relax. Feeling out of place was the single greatest contributor for being spotted in an area where one had no earthly business. But with the appropriate behavior and movement, a man in a suit in an alley was no more out of place than a man in overalls in the lobby of an office building. Properly portrayed, every appearance could be overlooked.

Dan reached the bottom of the stairs and admired the collection of discarded cigarette butts thrown half-heartedly at an empty coffee can resting just outside the door. He took one more calming breath and pushed through an unlocked metal door that read “Exit Only” in neat white print.

Unlocked doors were goldmines. Half the buildings in the Nation’s Capital were circumventing million-dollar security systems with propped open doors. A brick here. A doorstop there. If you knew where to look, an employee with a smoking habit could be better than a week of surveillance. Not to mention cheaper and less risky than paying off a doorman.

Inside the building, Dan entered an elbow-room-only foyer facing another door. He watched the light under the closed door and waited for the telltale movement of people on the other side to subside. When the timing was right and the movement ceased, he pulled the knob.

An attractive blonde in an off-the-shoulder red dress took a breath of surprise. Dan muted his response and without pausing pointed towards the men’s room with his chin. “Wrong door.”

The lady in red smiled and Dan followed through on his impromptu ruse and entered the restroom.

“Shit,” Dan whispered, looking into the mirror over a granite sink with gold fixtures. He had rules. One adjustment in the plan was standard. Two put him on notice. Three unforeseen adjustments to a plan and he aborted – immediately and without exception. There was little he could do about the woman in the hall so he pushed it aside. That’s one, he thought. A little early for an adjustment.

The lower level back door at the Hay Adams Hotel was a direct line into the living room of the elite. Off the Record – the appropriately named bar in the basement of the Hay Adams Hotel – boasted a history as long as its client list. It was where the rich blew off steam. People with faces too famous to enjoy a quiet drink in Georgetown or along Connecticut Avenue. Faces from the morning paper and evening news. Off the Record embraced customers who didn’t mind overpaying for drinks or the forty bucks it cost to valet their cars. Money was rapidly becoming the last legal barrier for keeping out the riffraff.

The Hay Adams Hotel, and its subterranean watering hole, was public. Dan could have chosen to walk through the lobby. He could have nodded at the bellhop and doorman as he strolled in unquestioned and unmolested. He could have slowly crossed the ornate wood-paneled entrance and past the polite scrutiny of the front desk as he made his way to the stairs. But why announce your arrival when you didn’t have to? Especially so close to payday.

In the mirror in the bathroom, Dan checked his watch, his hair, his face, his glasses, his teeth, his fingers. He peeked inside his manila folder. He exited the room and walked through the lone swinging door into the bar. He located his target before his first foot hit the deep burgundy carpet. He completed his room assessment by the time his second foot landed. Nine men and four women, he calculated, parsing his headcount before anyone noticed he was in the room. Five men at the bar, two of them seated together, most likely coworkers. Two women alone at a table on the far side of the room in similar black dresses. Waiting for dates, he thought. A table of three huddled in the opposite corner, far enough away to be out of most contingency scenarios. Dan added two more to the headcount for the bartender and waitress, and one more for the lady in red who was now in the bathroom.

Dan stepped from the dark corner near the bathroom and approached a man in his early fifties sitting alone at a table, his hand caressing a glass of Maker’s Mark.

“Judge McMichael,” Dan said, sitting quickly without invitation.

The judge tried not to look surprised but the corner of his eyes betrayed him as they danced towards the entrance of the bar.

“The back door?” the judge asked.

“Bathroom window,” Dan replied straight-faced.

“Am I at the correct table?”

“Yes. Thank you for following instructions.”

Dan didn’t take his eyes off the judge. The judge looked older than his pictures in the press. More stately. Fifty and fit with large hands and sharp eyes. The lighting at the table was romantic – enough light to see the judge, but dark enough to erase cosmetic imperfections from across the table. Perfect call-girl ambiance.

The judge stared back across the table at a short grey mop of curls and wild blue eyes dancing behind thick black-framed glasses. The judge’s eyes dropped to Dan’s hands and the manila folder on the table. Dan noticed the judge’s attention and he covered one hand with the other, both on top of the folder.

“Why don’t we both agree to keep our hands on the table,” Dan suggested before getting to work. “See the two guys at the far end of the bar?”

The judge turned his head slightly.

“They are with me.”

The judge nodded.

“I will make this short and sweet. Your wife has divorce papers for you to sign. She also has an agreement regarding alimony and the custody of your stepson and stepdaughter. She says you have been refusing to sign these documents and have threatened her and her children.”

“Do you know who I am?”

“Yes. Judge Terrance J. McMichael. Born in Naperville, Illinois. Educated at Princeton. Law School at Dartmouth. Judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit… also known as the D.C. Circuit. Wife is named Cindy. Stepdaughter is Caroline. Stepson is Craig.”

“And you are?”

“Someone willing to ruin your life. Your wife hired me to make a request on her behalf. You are a highly intelligent man so I’m going to assume you heard my request the first time and that I don’t need to repeat myself.” Dan paused for effect. “You are going to sign the papers.”

“Do you have any idea what I can do to you?”

Dan slid the manila folder into the middle of the table and opened it. The first photograph showed the judge’s wife with raccoon eyes, her nose broken, swollen to...


About the author:
mark gilleoMark Gilleo is the author of three award-winning novels. His books have won both the National Indie Excellence Award and the Readers’ Favorite Award. His two most recent novels were finalists in the 2014 International Book Awards. His latest novel, Favors and Lies, was named Runner-Up for fiction in both the 2014 San Francisco Book Festival and the 2014 New York Book Festival. Mark has a graduate degree in international business from the University of South Carolina and an undergraduate degree in business from George Mason University. He enjoys traveling, hiking and biking. He speaks Japanese. A fourth-generation Washingtonian, he currently resides in the DC area. Follow the author on Twitter | Goodreads



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'The Millionaire Within Us' by Chris Carley


Blurb:

From down and out, laid off airplane factory worker to multi-millionaire. Chris Carley broke all the rules working from home and never looked back. Overweight and depressed, Chris visualized a world of abundance for herself and brought it to life. Starting with a small $79 loan from her father, Chris strategically promoted her home based business with handmade flyers, turning her into a millionaire in just 5 years. Since then she has gone on to make millions in an industry that only a few people fully understand. Along the way she has been a keynote speaker and has helped mentor and teach thousands of people her marketing strategies. For the first time ever she has put her knowledge in a book "The Millionaire Within Us".

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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Story World: Why 'Visiting Lilly' is Based in Farnham by Toni Allen



Story World: Why Visiting Lilly is Based in Farnham

By Toni Allen


When I started writing Visiting Lilly I had no idea in what town it would be based, merely an idea in my head for the main thrust for the plot. Then, while outlining my first chapter, in my mind’s eye I saw Frankie’s house, and I immediately knew that he lived up near Farnham Park. I live close to Farnham, and I guess that something subliminal crept in and helped flesh out my character.

I was happy with this, the location was perfect. There are some reasonably large Victorian houses up near the park, and for Frankie to own a property like that suited his personality. Farnham Park is near to the town, but quiet. I already knew that for part of my plot line I wanted to include a country feel, and Farnham is in leafy Surrey, not completely rural, but not a bustling city of concrete either.

Having Farnham as the central location gave me the opportunity to include other nearby areas, and use my local knowledge to best advantage. Hence, when I wanted to give the Charteris family a huge property with land, it simply had to be a Queen Anne style house, because Farnham is situated on the border of Hampshire, and Jane Austen’s house is in the village of Chawton, close to Alton. The entire area is littered with spectacular Queen Anne houses, so when it came to writing Lilly’s backstory, it seemed appropriate that her father had a business in Alton.

On introducing my detective, Jake Talbot, I didn’t feel that he was born and bred locally. I wanted him to have been working in a tougher environment than Farnham, and from the way he started to speak, it became obvious that he’d moved down from London, for a quieter life, after family tragedies. London is only forty miles from Farnham, and this short distance to the heart of commerce, meant that I could easily have a character working in The City.

Farnham is surrounded by beautiful countryside, and Frankie’s family live over in Frensham, famous for its two ponds, Frensham Little Pond and Great Pond, which are run by the National Trust. Unfortunately Frankie’s family aren’t interested in the rare visiting bird breeds, or the rare native birds, which include the now endangered nightjar. If Talbot had heard the nightjar, which only flies at dusk and dawn, he would have thought the builders were out late with a jackhammer, because in the eerie forests around Frensham that’s what its call sounds like.

We’re very fortunate in Farnham because many of its old buildings have been preserved, so the town has a lovely old-world feel about it. Many buildings are Georgian and St Andrew's Church is among Surrey’s most important buildings, dating back to the 12th century. This delightfully old-fashioned backdrop, is ideal for Talbot and Frankie, who both have an avid interest in antiques, and for different personal reasons tend to yearn for the past. Visiting Lilly is a thoroughly modern story, with some extremely high-tech electronics at the heart of the mystery, so idyllic Farnham builds a strong contrast between location and the events that unfold.


Visiting Lilly
by Toni Allen

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BLURB:

D.I. Jake Talbot is a burnt-out British detective given a second chance to believe in love, friendship and the transcendent essence of the human experience. When he investigates a seemingly innocent visitor to a residential care home for the elderly he uncovers a dangerous family hiding a forbidden romance that mysteriously crosses the boundaries of time. The deceitful family does all they can to prevent Talbot from discovering their secrets surrounding an unsolved murder, family betrayal; at the core of which is a keenly intelligent, though somewhat mentally challenged young man who is fixated on an elderly woman being held captive by her own grandson. Talbot sets out to right the many wrongs done to the blameless, and in turn, rediscovers his own humanity.

Read an excerpt:
Jake makes notes

Chapter 17

Notes, yes, he should make notes, before all of the mad ideas popping into his head were zapped off into outer space. Time machine, bloody hell, he’d be interviewing little green men next, and scanning the airways for flying saucers. Placing his notebook on the table he tapped his pen up and down. Just make marks on the paper, words, anything, don’t think, write.

1) Frankie Hayward did not have a time machine … did he? Okay, so check it out. How? Good bloody question.

He drew heavily on his cigarette and stared down the street at people hurrying about their business. A young woman nearly slipped on the snow and fell. Instinctively he stood, ready to assist. Haste. Now there was a good word to write down. He sat and scribbled.

2) Two people were in no hurry to do anything. Why didn’t Keith’s parents report him missing? Where were they in all of this before they cried ‘murder!’?

3) See if there are any early psychiatric reports on Frankie. Mother said there were, Weissman alluded to them. Perhaps they would come with the files Weissman had promised.

4) How long has Lilly got to live? Stupid question, can’t be answered. Not long.

On better days he would have phoned Yates to run it past him. Suddenly there was only him, no sounding board, no second brain to fit the puzzle together. Closing his eyes, he smiled. So that was Weissman’s game. Now the only confidante he would have was Frankie Hayward himself. Oh, how clever, single him out and throw them together. Shit, was Weissman expecting him to go the same way as Keith? Involuntarily he shivered and hugged his coat tighter around his chest. Images of the headline sprang before his eyes, 'Stressed copper on leave disappears, alien abduction suspected.’

http://amzn.to/1pQTCv7

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Toni Allen is a professional tarot reader, astrologer, author and photographer.

I’ve been a professional tarot reader for about 30 years, and an astrologer for about 25. Now, thanks to the internet, I have an International client database. My main website is creaking because I haven’t updated it for so long, but it’s still fully functional and full of lots of interesting information. www.toniallen.co.uk . A new build is underway, with lots of modern bits and pieces so that you can connect with me via Facebook and easily keep up to date with events that I’m offering readings at.

http://toniallenauthor.com/

https://twitter.com/listansus

https://www.facebook.com/ToniAllenAuthor

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Toni-Allen/e/B0045DUUNK/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=undefined&sr=8-1

BN Author page: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/toni-allen

Booktrope: http://booktrope.com/books/



Toni will be awarding a free e-book of VISITING LILLY and a FREE TAROT CARD reading for one lucky commenter to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Follow along for more chances to win!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, November 24, 2014

'Winter Wolf' by R.J. Blain Release Day Blitz!

Winter Wolf by R.J. Blain
Urban Fantasy / Thriller / Supernatural Suspense
Date Published: November 24, 2014

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The Hunted Wizard

When Nicole dabbled in the occult, she lost it all: Her voice, her family, and her name. Now on the run from the Inquisition, she must prove to herself—and the world—that not all wizards are too dangerous to let live.

The savage murder of a bookstore employee throws Nicole into the middle of Inquisition business, like it or not. Driven by her inability to save the young man’s life, she decides to hunt the killer on her own. Using forbidden magic to investigate the past, she learns that the murderer is in fact a disease that could kill the entire werewolf race.

Forced to choose between saving lives and preserving her own, Nicole embraces the magic that sent her into exile. Without werewolves, the power of the Inquisition would dwindle, and she could live without being hunted.

Nicole’s only hope for success lies in the hands of the werewolves she hates and the Inquisition she fears, but finding someone to trust is only the beginning of her problems. There are those who want to ensure that the werewolves go extinct and that the Inquisition falls.

But, if she fails to find a cure, her family—including her twin sister—will perish…



EXCERPT


I slammed my car’s door, spun on a heel, and swore I would have a perfectly normal visit to the mall. All I needed was one little book. Even I could walk into a bookstore, pick up a novel, and leave without causing any trouble.

This time, I wouldn’t blow out the lights. There wouldn’t be a single power surge. I wouldn’t turn on every unplugged device in the electronics store on my way across the mall. In the ten minutes it would take me to get in and out, the only thing anyone would notice about me was the fact that I wore a high-collared sweater in late summer. I had a mission, and I would complete it without fail. The novel my agent insisted I read would be mine.

For a long moment, I considered turning around and getting back into my car. Dominic would forgive me if I didn’t start reading the book until tomorrow. I could call in a favor and ask someone to pick up a copy for me. Then I definitely wouldn’t run any risk of blowing anything up. If I had been smart, I would’ve just ordered the damned thing on the internet, but I had waited too long.

Fishing my cell out of my pocket, I unlocked the screen with a swipe of my finger. The charging icon mocked me. Despite running every battery-draining app I could find, the battery held a full charge. I opened another app, a devilish program capable of killing the battery in ten minutes. It wouldn’t, not with me around, but if I was too busy keeping my phone topped up, maybe my mall shopping trip would prove to be mundane.

I shook my head, laughing at my foolishness.

No one would notice my phone. No one would notice me for more than a second. They’d notice my clothes, and then they’d file me away as yet another weirdo wearing something strange to catch attention. L.A. was full of people like that.

I had no reason to worry. Even if I managed to embarrass myself yet again by losing control of my powers, no one would know I was the cause of unplugged electronics turning on or unusual power surges.

Straightening my shoulders, I fixed my eyes on the line of glass doors and marched my way across the parking lot.

In and out. No blown lights. No power surges. No feeding power to unplugged electrical devices. No charging batteries for strangers. I was in control, and I would charge only my phone.

Making my way to the entry, I paused long enough to hold the door for a little old lady who insisted on making her way through the regular doors despite her walker. I couldn’t blame her. If I lived to be her age, I wouldn’t want to rely on automatic doors either.

She thanked me with a pat on the arm. Flashing her my best smile, I slipped inside.

Nothing happened.

Perfect.

I could handle ten minutes in the crowded corridors. Maybe if I told myself that enough times, I’d believe it.






About the Author
RJ Blain suffers from a Moleskine journal obsession, a pen fixation, and a terrible tendency to pun without warning.

When she isn't playing pretend, she likes to think she's a cartographer and a sumi-e painter. In reality, she herds cats and a husband. She is currently on a quest for a new warrior fish.

In her spare time, she daydreams about being a spy. Should that fail, her contingency plan involves tying her best of enemies to spinning wheels and quoting James Bond villains until she is satisfied.



Favorite Books & Series

In no particular order:

Anne McCaffrey's Pern
Mercedes Lackey's Valdemar & Gryphon Series
Jim Butcher's Codex Alera & The Dresden Files
Brandon Sanderson's Elantris
Patricia Briggs' Alpha and Omega, Dragon Bones, & The Mercy Thompson series
Madeline L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time


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