Sunday, August 18, 2019

Fighting Chances (Charity Anthology w/multiple authors) ADULT titles






I'm a little late posting this, but a lovely anthology of gay male romance stories was put together to benefit the children of Alcoy, Philippines. Find out more information here.






(authors' names below)
ADULT titles



An opportunity to put his hands around his enemy's... neck.

What can a man do when the spark of hate ignites the fire of passion? Can desire bridge the gap between two men on opposite sides of a fence? A kitchen aisle? What about a war?

Can love heal years of resentment and little hurts? Can it make a man recognize the humanity in another? And is the line between hate and love really all that thin?

In these 10 stories by well-loved M/M authors united by a common cause, you can find men in conflict with each other and with themselves... ready to give love a fighting chance.

 

All profits to be donated PROJECT CHILDREN ALCOY, a small volunteer-run project which provides healthy meals and school supplies to kindergarteners and children in Alcoy, Philippines.



·       Don’t Mean a Thing – Riley Ashby
·       Going Down – Corie Rosling
·       Nerve – Emily Alter
·       Frustration and Fireworks – J.D. Light
·       Saving the Dragon – Alicia Graybill
·       Hooked by the Bell – Tanya Chris
·       The Wedding Party – E.M. Leya
·       Turning Over a New Leaf – Kat Cassidy
·       Six Months – BL Maxwell
·       The Dawn Singer – K.K. Pieza




Excerpt:



“Turning Over a New Leaf” - An enemies to lovers romance featuring a die-hard environmentalist and a wood-cutter.



“Really committed to those single word responses, huh?” Miles snipped, irrationally annoyed. It was honestly hard to believe that this was the same guy from yesterday afternoon. “You know, even most apes are smart enough to form rudimentary sign language sentences in a lab setting.”

Logan flashed him a hand gesture that wasn’t exactly sign language, but was pretty hard to misinterpret. 


Miles was mesmerized by the display of Logan’s sure, corded muscles working beneath the tight thermal shirt, and the way the moonlight glinted off the waves of his hair, shiny and coppery as a new penny. And the sounds he made—those booming grunts of exertion were primal and carnal and deeply unfair.




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My review:

4 out of 5 stars




Fighting Chances is an entertaining combination of "enemies to lovers" adult gay romance stories that showcase the writing talents of ten talented authors. The fact that the proceeds are being donated to a worthy cause is just icing on the cake.

I particularly enjoyed the hijinks in Tanya Chris' "Hooked by the Bell," as two men continue the bitter feud between their families over a strip of land that separates their respective properties...until they rediscover there are more important things to have in common. A particularly hilarious (to me) scene takes place in their childhood treehouse that is NOT soundproof, lol. 

Kat Cassidy's "Turning Over a New Leaf" gives a new perspective on the fight between fellers (who cut down trees) and environmentalists who go to extremes to protect nature and I felt a connection to both main characters immediately and will definitely be looking for other works by this author as well.

Corie Rosling's "Going Down" taught me that omegas can be pretty feisty, lol, and I enjoyed the lesson on what can be done with shrink wrap.

BL Maxwell's "Six Months" made me hungry, although I wanted to smack one of the main characters (always good when they resonate enough with you to make you annoyed, I guess, lol). A slow burn romance.


Some of the stories in the anthology are not for the faint of heart, so make sure to read the warnings that accompany descriptions. I read an ARC, so I am hopeful that the story that had quite a few errors has been revised. Overall, the book was engaging, (mostly) easy to read, and covers a wide spectrum of gay romance.



 A copy of this story was provided for review

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Dangerous Games by Claire Thompson (Spotlight and review) ADULT




by

Claire Thompson



When you play dirty games, the stakes are dangerously high …

Reese Armstrong is striving to get his life on track. He has started a new career, gotten a new apartment…now he has to figure out how to shake the guy who insists on controlling his every move. For years, Reese took part in the deviant bets orchestrated by his wealthy lover, Hank. He’s told himself he’s done with all that, but the terms of this latest bet are more than Reese can refuse. 
As head computer programmer at a software company, Luca Hartman’s professional life is soaring. But his personal life is a lonely mess. When the hot new sales guy takes an interest in him, a world of possibility opens. But Luca’s been burned before, and he’s wary of the sudden attention. Why would Reese, who could have any man he wants, choose geeky, stuttering Luca? Is he truly sincere or should Luca be on the lookout for a string of malicious code?
Disarmed and enchanted by the shy, brilliant Luca, Reese has to make a choice: reject Hank’s dirty tactics or follow through and destroy the potential he sees with Luca. But even if Reese wants to be done with their dangerous games, Hank’s not through with him…
This is Book 1 of the Games of the Heart M/M series. Be sure to check out Book 2 Turning the Tables.
- coming soon!








My review:



4.25 out of 5 stars


Dangerous Games by Claire Thompson features a computer geek named Luca Hartman who gets caught up in an unholy bet made by Reese Armstrong, a colleague at his company. Reese is trying to reinvent his life, but has been in a rut with the man who shaped his life since they were both in high school, even though their malicious games are no longer fun. Once Reese gets to know the shy Luca, he realizes there could be a better way to fulfill his needs, but only if he can find a way to break the chains to his past without destroying his future.


This adult gay BDSM romance provides a delicious mixture of kink and emotionalism as Reese works through the conditioning he’s had since his teen years and discovers there’s a different way to approach a relationship. I enjoyed the way things morphed as Reese’s conscience finally kicks in and he realizes that not only does he need to treat others better but he also deserves to be treated better. There are certain developments that are inevitable, and for me, the resolution of the major conflict is a little contrived, but I still breathed a sigh of relief. Both of the main characters are personable, and I was quickly invested in seeing them work out as a couple and entertained by the apparent role reversal. I am intrigued by the idea of the slimy ex getting his comeuppance, but it’s going to take a lot to redeem him, so I can’t wait to see what the author has in store.


A copy of this title was provided for review 



Loved By The Beast by Anya Summers (VBB, excerpt, and GIVEAWAY) GFT ADULT title









by
Anya Summers

ADULT title



Anna has plans for her life. This fall, she will be heading off to medical school, well on her way to becoming a doctor. But first, she and her besties head to Ireland to celebrate.

Nowhere did her future plans even include serious dating, let alone becoming mated to a man who can turn into a freaking beast with wings. Nor did she reckon with being sucked through a portal onto another planet while on her way home from a great night out.

Yet from the very first time her new mate touches her, Anna wonders if this could be the real deal – as in: the big L. The only problem is, her mate says his kind do not love; they protect, they pleasure, and they provide. Can Anna really kiss goodbye to all her plans for the future, and agree to spend the rest of her existence without love?


Publisher’s Note: This steamy paranormal romance, while the third in the Alcyran Chronicles series, can be read and enjoyed as a standalone.

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Excerpt

Earth. He loathed this vile planet.

D’Vorak cursed his current predicament, perched high above the city on the flat, stone roof edge of a tall building. He scanned the surrounding area. His mission: find the three women, kidnap them, and get the lot to Rhiannon. If he accomplished his quest, she would cancel the compact his people had with the Clovis. It could only be voided by magic, which none of his people—himself included—had. When the pact ended, his people would be free of the Clovis once and for all. It was why he had taken charge of the mission and did not have one of his generals execute it. Their freedom from the compact must be won before their deception was uncovered. The Clovis could not get their hands on what they had built.

This world smelled like a swampy bog filled with methane gas, excrement, and an undercurrent of desperation. The stench permeated his being to the point where he was unsure he would ever be rid of it, even upon his return to Destruna. In all his days, D’Vorak had never seen so many stone buildings side by side together, or paved stone streets, and they went on for miles and miles, bleeding into the horizon. If he wanted wide open spaces, forests, trees, and grass, he would have to fly many miles, to the perimeter of the city and beyond.

The overcrowding press from multitudes of people left him with the urge to tear this planet apart. How anyone could live with so many people present, he had no clue. It would drive him mad. He could sense them, every heartbeat, every voice, all layered upon each other, drowning the individual out and created a deafening kaleidoscope of sound. The frenetic pace of this planet made it unbalanced and ungainly. It was a world in chaos on the brink of collapse. The skies were scorched, the air infused with noxious chemicals so thick he could taste them in his beast form. It was a wonder these people survived.

How could they not sense the impending doom? That their world was dying?


 Amazon link


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About the Author:
Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Anya grew up listening to Cardinals baseball and reading anything she could get her hands on. She remembers her mother saying if only she would read the right type of books instead binging her way through the romance aisles at the bookstore, she’d have been a doctor. While Anya never did get that doctorate, she graduated cum laude from the University of Missouri-St. Louis with an M.A. in History.

Anya is a bestselling and award-winning author published in multiple fiction genres. She also writes urban fantasy, paranormal romance, and contemporary romance under the name Maggie Mae Gallagher. (http://www.maggiemaegallagher.com/) A total geek at her core, when she is not writing, she adores attending the latest comic con or spending time with her family. She currently lives in the Midwest with her two furry felines.




Website: Website
Facebook: Facebook
Twitter: Twitter
Goodreads: Goodreads
Amazon Author Page
Bookbub: Bookbub
Instagram: Instagram
Newsletter


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Don’t miss these exciting titles by Anya Summers!

Dungeon Fantasy Club Series

Her Highland Master, Book 1
To Master and Defend, Book 2
Two Doms for Kara, Book 3 
His Driven Domme, Book 4 
Her Country Master, Book 5
Love Me, Master Me, Book 6
Submit To Me, Book 7
Her Wired Dom, Book 8

Pleasure Island Series

Her Master & Commander, Book 1  
Her Music Masters, Book 2
Their Shy Submissive, Book 3
Her Lawful Master, Book 4
Her Rockstar Dom, Book 5
Duets & Dominance, Book 6 
Her Undercover Doms, Book 7 
Ménage In Paradise, Book 8
Her Rodeo Masters, Book 9

Cuffs & Spurs Series

His Scandalous Love
His Unexpected Love
His Wicked Love
His Untamed Love
His Tempting Love
His Seductive Love
His Secret Love
His Cherished Love

The Alcyran Chronicles

Taken by the Beast
Claimed by the Beast
Loved by the Beast



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GIVEAWAY

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Anya Summers will be awarding a $15 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.



a Rafflecopter giveaway




The tour dates can be found here






Monday, August 12, 2019

Taking Wing by Clemency Crow (Spotlight, excerpt, review, and GIVEAWAY) GFT






by Clemency Crow

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GENRE: Middle Grade Adventure

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BLURB:

Twelve-year-old Freya enjoys karate and is the only one in her class who’s trusted with a part-time job. But everything changes when she meets a boy with yellow eyes. She learns about the guardians, and how an age-old fight has prevented them from fulfilling their purpose.

Freya finds new friends in the Crow tribe, but not everything in the castle is blissful. A destructive shadow lies within her and all she needs to do to release it is close her eyes.

But as the guardians’ war rages on, Freya realises that, although the shadow’s power can be useful, it can’t create peace. To do that, Freya and her friends must solve the mysterious crime that began the war. Can they bring the guardians together before they destroy each other?

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EXCERPT

“Tell me more about the Owls,” Freya requested. She couldn’t deny that the statue fascinated her. It was such a magnificent gift, it seemed tragic that the people who gifted it were now at war. Elialdor, standing behind her, placed his hands on her shoulders.

“Their king is a man called Raedwald. He commands perhaps more than even the Crows. Perhaps the most powerful of our kind.” Elialdor spoke almost in a whisper. “It was him who killed my grandfather.”

“The king?” Freya turned around to face him. The prince’s face looked so sad, but proud all the same.

“Yes. But he was my grandfather too.” He bowed his head. “Raedwald was angry with our tribe and sought revenge. So he killed him.”

“Revenge for what?” Freya could not help but ask.

“He believed we committed a crime that we did not. The only way to prove our innocence was to find the truly guilty party: something we failed to do. So we remain at war.”

Although Freya wanted to find out more on the matter, the look of pain on Elialdor’s face stopped her from asking any more questions. She was struggling to piece together the fragments of information she had received, and each conversation made it more intriguing.
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AUTHOR Bio and Links:



I can't remember when I wrote my first story. We had a word processor when I was very little. It was an archaic piece of technology with no mouse, which meant you had to know the codes for it to work. My sister, Judith, and I wrote several stories using this. I think one of my stories was about a mammoth, probably during my I-want-to-be-a-mammoth-when-I-grow-up stage.

When I was a bit older, during Year 3 at Primary School, another sister brought home several A5 grey jotters and gave one to Ginny and Judith to plan and write their stories in. Naturally, I wanted a notebook too, so I said I was writing a story called "The Rule of the Unicorns". I never finished that rather peculiar tale, but it meant I got one of those A5 grey jotters!

A good few years down the line and I'm a Primary Teacher in the tip-top north of Scotland. To encourage a love of reading in my pupils, I write a story with them in for their Christmas present. The first thing they do is flick through and try and find their name - but I hope they enjoy the story too!

When I'm not teaching, I love writing, working on my allotment and I'm crazy enough to be doing a Science degree at the same time.



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GIVEAWAY


a Rafflecopter giveaway


The tour dates can be found here





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My review:


3.5 out of 5 stars





Taking Wing by Clemency Crow centers around Freya, a young girl who is mysteriously transported to a land that is peopled by tribes of birds, two of which factions are engaged in a deadly war. As she gradually learns the rules that govern the interactions between humans and the tribes that were originally created to protect them, Freya is reluctant to fulfill the role expected of her but gradually is drawn into the conflict. Her biggest challenges are figuring out who to believe and how to harness the power everyone believes she can wield.



This middle grade fantasy explores the challenges of discovering the truth in a world that is entirely foreign, where everyone around you has expectations about your very existence. The story is imaginative and touches on the differences between several bird species but doesn’t go into much detail about anything other than their relative sizes. I think the tale provides fodder for encouraging research into such things as the different types of crows or owls but I found some things confusing and I was a bit surprised by the ending, which evidently implies that the story will continue. Somehow, there don’t seem to be a lot of adult female roles, and those aren’t very sympathetic, and the conflicts between the rulers and their sons seem universal but are not clearly explained. The rules of magic are a bit murky and I still don’t understand how the tribes are protecting humans, but hopefully details will be filled in with subsequent stories.





A copy of this story was provided for review


Saturday, August 10, 2019

Release (Rent Boys #1) by A E Ryecart (Release blitz) GBP. ADULT title



Release 
(Rent Boys #1)
by
  A E Ryecart
 ADULT title



Publisher: Indie published

Cover Artist: Tammy Clarke

Release Date: August 9, 2019

Genre/s: contemporary MM romance

Trope/s: opposites attract, sex worker hero, class difference, slow burn

Heat Rating: 2 flames

Length: 70 000 approx. words






When life holds them captive, can love be their release?

Blurb

Selling his body since he was a fifteen-year-old runaway, rent boy Sean Farrell has learned the hard lesson that the only way to survive the streets is to act tough and cocky. But an act is all it is, as underneath he’s never felt more adrift as he struggles with crippling self-doubt. Sean’s distilled life into three simple rules: earn enough cash to get by, stick close to the friends who have become his family — and don’t let anyone steal his heart.

Art is Laurie Cassell’s profession and passion. His calm and ordered life is just how he thinks he wants it, but it’s becoming harder to ignore the creeping feeling that calm and ordered has become dull and predictable. Laurie craves more but doesn’t know what, or not until a man with dark hazel eyes and a bad attitude swaggers into his life — and leaves with his heart.

Two men who should never have met, let alone fallen in love. Can Sean and Laurie release the other from lives that are holding them captive?



*** Release is a slow burn, opposites attract MM romance. Found family, good friends who give advice our men don’t want to hear, and the redemptive power of love can all be found between the pages. No cliffhanger, and a guaranteed HEA. ***


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Excerpt

“Didn’t you hear what he said? He doesn’t want a drink. Are you fucking deaf as well as stupid?”

The words were out of Sean’s mouth before he could think. This wasn’t his fight, this wasn’t his problem. What am I getting myself into? But Sean knew why he hadn’t walked away. The drunk was a bully, and his hectoring voice had scratched down Sean’s spine like nails over a chalkboard. Sean moved in closer, narrowing the space between him and the drunk to no more than a hand’s width.

“Piss off. This hasn’t got anything to do with you.” The drunk made a good effort at standing his ground, but his voice had lost its edge. He was no longer so sure of himself, the ground beneath his feet no longer so stable.

Sean said nothing, offering only a grim smile. He knew what the drunk was seeing.

Tall and well built, and with his hair cut short and severe, Sean looked like a squaddie, a soldier off-duty for the night. Have you got the uniform? Have you got the fatigues? Words, and others like them, he’d had panted into his ear more than once. Sean watched as the drunk hesitated. Unexpectedly challenged, he deflated like a balloon stabbed with a pin.

The guy shrugged and walked off, banging his shoulder into Sean in a final show of defiance. Sean let him have his second or two of triumph; he was gone, and that was all that mattered.

A soft and cultured voice drifted out of the shadow.

“Thank you. You didn’t have to, but, thanks. I appreciate it. He didn’t seem to want to listen to me.” The added words were accompanied by a nervous, hesitant laugh.

Now that the drunk had gone, Sean focused his full attention on the guy.

Dark, heavy hair fell in a floppy fringe across his brow. Pushing it aside, the guy looked up.

Under the bar’s muted lights, Sean couldn’t determine the colour of his eyes, other than they were large, dark, and full of gratitude. There was a fine-boned delicacy about his clean-shaven face — no hint of designer stubble — and he was well, if conservatively, dressed. Late twenties, thirty at a push, Sean guessed, just a few years more than his own twenty-four.

“Are you waiting for friends or was that just a way of telling him,” Sean said, jabbing his thumb over his shoulder, “to take a hike?” He stared down at the guy, who looked as awkward and out of place in the overpriced, pretentious bar as he did.

The guy nodded, fiddling with the mixer stick in his glass, stirring the ice, and pushing down on what looked like a whole load of salad leaves.

“I am. This wasn’t my choice, but, well…” He screwed up his nose as he looked beyond Sean and into the bar.

Sean glanced behind him, surprised to see how in just a few minutes the crowd had swollen. He turned back to the guy and met his wry smile with one of his own.

“Yeah, well, this place was my choice, but I’ve gotta ask myself why.”

The guy laughed. “Everybody’s allowed one erroneous choice. It’s a friend’s birthday, and he wanted to come here, so I didn’t get a lot of say.”

“So where is he, then?”

“Late, as always, but I’m early. As always.”




Buy Links - Available on Kindle Unlimited


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About the Author 


I love all kinds of MM romance and gay fiction, but I especially like contemporary stories. Born and raised in London, the city is part of my DNA so I like to set many of my stories in and around present-day London, providing the perfect metropolitan backdrop to all the main action. When I’m not writing at home, in the gym, in cafés - in fact any place I can find a good coffee - I can be found with my feet up thinking of more ways to put my men through the emotional wringer!








Author Links







Talking RoMMance… with a British accent

(This a shared group. The other UK authors are Jack L Pyke, Louise Mae, and Susan Mac Nicol)



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Giveaway 

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win one of three ebook copies of Release.

 
 

 


➜ Sign up to become a tour host here

 
 





Thursday, August 8, 2019

The Jade Hunters by A.B. Michaels (VBT, guest post, excerpt, and GIVEAWAY) GFT




I'm happy to share a post by author A.B. Michaels, who tells us...





What’s Genre Fiction and Why is it So Important?
by
A.B. Michaels






The term “genre fiction” often gets a bad rap; many uninformed people (aka snobs) think it’s a step below “real” literature. The truth is, quality has little to do with whether a book is classified as genre vs. literary fiction; in fact, I believe all fiction is genre-based—and thank goodness it is.


It started with the Greeks; the very first examples of western literature were divided into tragedy or comedy. As the written word expanded, it was further categorized as drama, poetry, fable, fairytale, etc. Once the printing press brought writing to the masses, it became even more important to divide what was being written into categories that readers could choose from. Today, whether you’re shopping online or in a brick and mortar bookstore, it’s crucial to differentiate genres or you’ll spend a lifetime wandering through the physical or virtual stacks trying to find what you’d like to read.


Separating books by genre is great because it helps me find the type of book I feel like reading on any given day—a preference that changes with my mood or circumstance. A story fits into a given genre because it meets the guidelines and expectations of that genre; essentially it’s a contract between reader and writer. For example, if I pick a mystery, I know there will be a puzzle to solve. With a romance, the main characters are going to have some relationship hurdles to climb before happily resolving their differences. Do I want to be scared? The horror writer will do his or her best to send chills down my spine.


Think of the fiction-reading universe as a giant pie, with each genre (and its corresponding target audience) making up a unique slice of that pie. In the old days of strictly traditional publishing, there weren’t that many slices, but the cool thing about the advent of Indie/online publishing is that now there are vastly more slices of pie to choose from. A genre can be truly niche (say, steampunk space romance featuring transgender protagonists). It may be a small slice, but it’s just as worthy of the marketplace as any other type of fiction.


I said above that I think all fiction—including literary—falls into one genre or another. Some writers joke that the hallmark of the literary genre is a novel that’s really difficult to read and has a sad ending! I wouldn’t go that far, but I will say that just about every classic literary novel falls into at least one genre, and sometimes more than one. Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace, for example, is literary, yes, but it’s also historical fiction and family saga all rolled into one.


Many publishing industry-watchers (including pundits from Writer’s Digest) believe the future of fiction lies in genre-blending, and I’m all for it, because I think more choice is better than less. Having said that, I do think writers need to remember the mantra of “Truth in Advertising” when they promote their particular work. It goes back to the contract between writer and reader. If I see a cartoon-like cover on a book with a “romcom” type of book blurb, I don’t expect to read about an axe murderer terrorizing a village. If the cover looks and sounds like a romance, it darn well better have a romance in it, and it better come with a happy ending! And if a story contains the elements of two or more genres, it ought to deliver on the expectations for all of them. That may sound like a no-brainer, but writers will often miss the mark with their marketing and lose sales because readers expect one type of read based on the cover and book description and get something else entirely.


Each of us is unique, and genre fiction enables us to find the kind of stories we want to read. As writers, whatever genre we write in, it’s important to understand reader expectations for that genre and fulfill that promise. Readers will let you know through customer reviews if you’ve let them down.


By the way, I write in the genres of romantic suspense (The Jade Hunters is the latest installment of my “Sinner’s Grove” series) and historical fiction. That series is called “The Golden City.” If you love reading those genres, you won’t be disappointed!





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by 
A.B. Michaels

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GENRE: Romantic Suspense

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BLURB:


Award-winning jewelry designer Regina Firestone is proud to exhibit her famous grandmother’s multi-million dollar “bauble” collection at the grand re-opening of The Grove Center for American Art, known among the locals as “Sinner’s Grove.”

The fact that she’s considering modeling the jewels in the nude like her grandmother did infuriates photographer Walker Banks, a co-owner of The Grove who’s in charge of the exhibit. Neither is willing to admit the real reason for the sparks between them.

Their argument takes a back seat when Reggie discovers that one of the most compelling pieces in the collection is not at all what it seems. Tracking down the truth will take the couple into the dark heart of a quest that’s lasted more than a century, one in which destroying human lives—including Reggie’s and Walker’s—means nothing in the pursuit of a twisted sense of justice.



The Jade Hunters is Book Three of Michaels’ contemporary series, “Sinner’s Grove Suspense.” The series follows the descendants of characters introduced in Michaels’ historical fiction series, “The Golden City.”

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EXCERPT

“The Pursuit”

By the time he made it to the room, Regina was standing at the opening of what looked like a submarine hatch.  Of course.  They were near the water.  She was catching her breath and waiting for him.

“Come on,” she said. “She’s getting away.”

“Where does that lead?”

“To a cave,” she said. “It’s got to be an exit; otherwise they would have boarded it up.” She held out her hand. “Please, we can’t lose her. Let’s go.”

“I can’t,” he said.           
                                      
“You can. Come on.  We’re losing time!”

The panic that was never far away at times like this reared its ugly head.  “I can’t do it. I told you I can’t handle small spaces. I can’t ...”

Regina placed her hands firmly on the sides of his face as she looked deep within him. “This is not a long cave; it can’t be, because it’s very close to the water and is subject to the tides.” She pointed to the other side of the hatch. “You can see the tide is coming in. We must go and I need your help.  You have always been there for me and I know you’ll be there for me now.  Just as I’m going to be there for you, every step of the way. I will not let you go, I promise.”

Walker stared at Regina’s beautiful, earnest face. It had all come down to this. It was too important for her to stop, and too dangerous to let her go on her own. She needed him, and he wasn’t going to let a crippling phobia stand in his way. 


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AUTHOR Bio and Links:





A native of California, A.B. Michaels holds masters’ degrees in history (UCLA) and broadcasting (San Francisco State University). After working for many years as a promotional writer and editor, she turned to writing fiction, which is the hardest thing she's ever done besides raise two boys. She lives with her husband and two spoiled dogs in in Boise, Idaho, where she is often distracted by kayaking, playing bocce, and trying to hit a golf ball more than fifty yards. Reading and travel figure into the mix, leading her to hope that sometime soon, someone invents a 25+ hour day. Her historical fiction series, “The Golden City,” explores America’s Gilded Age and its effect on characters, both actual and fictional, while her contemporary series, “Sinner’s Grove Suspense,” follows descendants of The Golden City as they navigate today’s equally treacherous waters. She is currently expanding both series.













 



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GIVEAWAY

a Rafflecopter giveaway





The tour dates can be found here





Tuesday, August 6, 2019

April in the Back of Beyond by p.m.terrell (VBT, guest post, excerpt, and GIVEAWAY)







It is my pleasure to present a guest post by author p.m. terrell who shares...







On Writing Mysteries and Suspense

by p.m. terrrell

I’ve found myself drawn to mysteries and suspense since I was a young girl. I enjoy reading books that build suspense, causing me to turn the pages because I have unanswered questions that I must resolve. I also like to try and find the clues within the story, particularly when there are twists and turns, and with a particularly good book that has kept me guessing, I’ve been known to immediately read it a second time so I can dissect how the author put the story together. Because those are the books I enjoy reading, I enjoy writing them as well. There is a creative element of course, but also a technical element in building a mystery or suspense properly.

When I began researching my family history, it led me to Ireland and I’ve become incredibly interested in its history. I’ve found even with my historical books, I look for the mysteries of the time and that climactic scene that changes the course of history, not only for my ancestors but for an entire culture. I’ve traveled to Ireland several times, even finding my ancestral home in County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, but my dream would be to live there and write my books in a cottage by the water. It is a magical place, a mystical place, and I’ve felt more at home in Ireland than any other place I’ve been.

When I began writing fiction in the late ‘90s, I found few authors willing to share their secrets of success with me, as though it was to remain a well-kept secret. I promised myself when I became successful, I would help those authors that came after me. I was a co-founder with The Book ‘Em Foundation and worked on annual events in Virginia, New Hampshire and North Carolina that brought authors together to sell their books and attend free conferences on everything from building characters to marketing, and I’ve mentored many more. I hope they, in turn, help others that come after them.

Thank you for having me here today!



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by
p.m.terrell

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GENRE: Romantic Suspense/Ghost Story

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BLURB:

Writer Hayley Hunter has arrived in Ireland to complete a book on Irish history. When she discovers the old carriage house she is renting is haunted, she is determined to uncover the truth behind the burned ruins of a nearby manor house and the abandoned British barracks it overlooks. With the assistance of Shay Macgregor, an Irish historian, her quest will take her to 1919 and the Irish War for Independence, exposing the murders of two young men and why their mother, April Crutchley, refuses to leave the back of beyond even in death. With a budding romance and the opportunity to begin life anew, Hayley finds her own life is now in jeopardy as she gets closer to a truth the villagers have long sought to bury.

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EXCERPT


When I heard the soft sobs, I realized I had drifted off once more and in my half-awakened state, I thought the cries were connected to my discordant dreams. I lay there with a groan on my lips not quite ready to spill out and wishing I could simply sleep peacefully before it was too late and I would be forced to arise for the long day ahead. I felt the bedcovers slip away from my bare shoulders and I fought to open my eyes.

When they finally did open, I discovered that I was completely uncovered. The bedcovers had been pulled to the foot of the bed and were shivering inches from my feet as they lay heaped into an unkempt triangle about three feet in height. I blinked once and then twice, my mind not grasping what my eyes were witnessing, for surely it must be a trick of the eyes to think the covers were still moving.

It was then that I realized the soft sobs had continued even after I had fully awakened and they were not part and parcel of my overactive dream state but they were real and they were coming from the direction of the blanket.

“You don’t understand,” came the sound of a woman’s voice, wracked with anguished sobs. “They are still here.”

“No, sweet darling,” returned a weary man’s voice that sounded so close I nearly jumped out of my skin. “They are with God now.”

“I’m telling you they are not,” the woman answered, her weeping growing more tormented. “They’ve never left. They’re still here.”

Within the space of a single heartbeat, I saw myself just a few nights ago, convinced the voices came from outside my window. Then I was pulled into the present to fight the horrifying realization that I was sharing my bed with two apparitions.

I slid my feet away from the covers in excruciatingly slow progress, afraid at any moment my movements would alert the phantoms of my presence. I tucked my feet and knees close to my torso as I came to an uneasy seated position, almost fetal in an attempt to occupy as little space as possible.

The room had become an icebox despite the radiators and I found myself shivering almost in tandem with the blanket. I had no idea how long I sat there, curled against the headboard and pillows, watching the foot of the bed and listening to the disembodied voices that filled the air. But then something seemed to snap inside me, fully awakening me to the present time and despite my fear, despite my trepidation, I grew impatient with myself. I reached a trembling hand toward the bedcovers, intent on pulling them over me to fight the chill as well as reassure me that they were not wet.

But at the precise moment I felt the dampness under my fingers, the sobbing stopped, replaced by a gasp that was not my own. I yanked the covers to the side, determined to discover what mechanical device lay beneath. The material jerked away from me as though I was engaged in a tug-of-war and the gasp was replaced with a woman’s blood-curdling scream and a man’s shouts.






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AUTHOR Bio and Links:


p.m.terrell is the pen name for Patricia McClelland Terrell, the award-winning, internationally acclaimed author of more than 23 books in multiple genres, including contemporary suspense, historical suspense, computer instructional, non-fiction and children’s books.

Prior to writing full-time, she founded two computer companies in the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area: McClelland Enterprises, Inc. and Continental Software Development Corporation. Among her clients were the Central Intelligence Agency, United States Secret Service, U.S. Information Agency, and Department of Defense. Her specialties were in the detection of white collar computer crimes and computer intelligence.

A full-time author since 2002, Black Swamp Mysteries was her first series, inspired by the success of Exit 22, released in 2008. Vicki’s Key was a top five finalist in the 2012 International Book Awards and 2012 USA Book Awards nominee, and The Pendulum Files was a national finalist for the Best Cover of the Year in 2014. Her second series, Ryan O’Clery Suspense, is also award-winning. The Tempest Murders (Book 1) was one of four finalists in the 2013 International Book Awards, cross-genre category. Her historical suspense, River Passage, was a 2010 Best Fiction and Drama Winner. It was determined to be so historically accurate that a copy of the book resides at the Nashville Government Metropolitan Archives in Nashville, Tennessee. Songbirds are Free is her bestselling book to date; it is inspired by the true story of Mary Neely, who was captured in 1780 by Shawnee warriors near Fort Nashborough (now Nashville, TN).

She was the co-founder of The Book ‘Em Foundation, an organization committed to raising public awareness of the correlation between high crime rates and high illiteracy rates. She was the founder of Book ‘Em North Carolina, an annual event held in the town of Lumberton, North Carolina, to raise funds to increase literacy and reduce crime and served as its chairperson and organizer for its first four years. She also served on the boards of the Friends of the Robeson County (NC) Public Library, the Robeson County (NC) Arts Council, Virginia Crime Stoppers and became the first female president of the Chesterfield County-Colonial Heights Crime Solvers in Virginia.

For more information, book trailers, excerpts and more, visit the author’s website at www.pmterrell.com.

Twitter: @pmterrell



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