Friday, March 8, 2019

The Rising by Morgan Brice (Spotlight, guest post, and review) GBP ADULT title

It is definitely my pleasure to share a guest post by author Morgan Brice (Gail Z. Martin). I have had the wonderful opportunity to read several of her books and I am always delighted to see she has published a new story!

The Long and Winding Publication

Morgan Brice

Under my Morgan Brice name, I’m new to publishing urban fantasy MM paranormal romance. But under my Gail Z. Martin name, I’ve been published in urban fantasy, epic fantasy, steampunk, comedic horror and nonfiction for twelve years. What a long, strange trip it’s been!

My first-ever book (under my Gail name) was The Summoner, the first in my Chronicles of the Necromancer epic fantasy series. That book took twenty years to write. I came up with the characters when I was in college, wrote drafts all the way through graduate school and my early married years, and came back to it on and off in between having three children, multiple moves, and various job changes.

My first publisher was a medium-sized British press, and I did eight books with them. Later on, I also published with a Top 5 New York/London press, with whom I did six books. Along the way, I had short stories in more than 40 anthologies in the US/UK, mostly with small presses. Then in 2018, we made a big shift. We stopped working with the big publishers, took back a couple of contracts, added the Morgan Brice UF/MM/PNR books, and went mostly indie.

I say ‘mostly indie’ because we’re still doing three series with Falstaff Books, a NC-based small publisher, and we have contracts with Recorded Books/Tantor for the audio books of the new indie novels we’re releasing. And when I say ‘we’, it’s because my husband, business partner and frequent co-author, Larry N. Martin, is in the business full-time with me, and we collaborate on everything.

Writing/publishing has become a cottage industry at the Martin house. Our adult kids often beta read for us and help spread the word. At this point, most of our friends are authors, the ones we hit the road with when we go to conventions. Larry handles a lot of the important back-end stuff and the first round of editing, which is how we’re able to do as many books a year as we do. Vacations tend to include book location scouting and research. Dinner conversation usually revolves around plot twists and edits. We have learned, when eating in restaurants, to watch our volume when discussing how to kill someone.

I’m still writing under the Gail name, with a slate of upcoming epic and urban fantasy releases this year, as well as planning to have quite a few new books under the Morgan name. The decision to use the pen name for the romance came about because my Gail books have no explicit sex and the Morgan books do, and I didn’t want to give anyone a heart attack if they picked up something they weren’t expecting! We also publish some series as co-authors under both the Gail and Larry names, and some books just come out under Larry’s name.

I often get asked for advice for aspiring authors. The first thing is to learn your craft. I steer people to the books on writing and publishing by Writers’ Digest Books. They’re good, solid fundamentals. Next, keep writing. The more you write, the better you get at it. Ask for feedback, and look for ways to do better each time. But most importantly, never give up. This is a tough business, and it can take a while to break in. Don’t ever give up. Believe in yourself and your stories, and hang in there. After all, it took me twenty years to become an ‘overnight’ success!

Thank you for having me as a guest! I hope folks will check out The Rising and the whole Badlands series, as well as my Witchbane books. 

You can also stay in touch by joining my Facebook Group

Or following me on Pinterest (for Morgan and Gail)  where I post photos of places and people who inspire my books. I’m also on Twitter: @MorganBriceBook and you can get a free Badlands short story (Restless Nights)  and sign up for my newsletter here.


 (Badlands, Book 2)

Morgan Brice
ADULT title

Cover Artist: Natania Barron
Genre/s: Urban Fantasy, MM paranormal romance
Heat Rating: 4 flames
Release Date: February 13, 2019

Can be read as a standalone


A big storm is brewing, there’s a killer on the loose, and the ghosts of Myrtle Beach are restless. Psychic medium Simon Kincaide and his sexy cop boyfriend, homicide detective Vic D’Amato have their hands full helping the Grand Strand brace for rough surf, driving rain and high winds as a winter storm roars toward shore.

Everyone’s on edge, and rumors are rampant about sightings of Blackcoat Benny, a ghostly omen of danger, and worse, the Gallows Nine, the spirits of nine infamous criminals hanged back in the 1700s, a harbinger of disaster. Rough tides wash the wreck of an old pirate ship into shallow waters, high winds threaten to damage an old mansion with a dark past, and the citizens of the beach town hunker down to ride out the storm.

As the skies grow dark and the sea turns wild, several men from prominent local families end up dead under suspicious circumstances. Simon’s premonition confirms Vic’s gut feeling—the killing is just getting started. As Simon tries to reach out to the spirits of the murdered men to help the investigation, he’s attacked by malicious ghosts that don’t want anyone getting in the way of their long-overdue vengeance.

With the storm hammering the coast, and new victims piling up, Simon is certain that the sins and secrets of the past are coming due, and that the murders have a supernatural link. Vic and Simon race to stop the murders against an unholy deadline, but as they battle rising tides and risen ghosts, can they save the intended victims without getting trapped themselves.

Trigger Warning: Mentions of suicide (not main characters)


Grand Strand Ghost Tours didn’t just arise from Simon’s passion for myth, legend, and folklore; it was rooted in his abilities as a psychic medium. Sure, the ghost tours were largely entertainment, but Simon also gave private psychic readings and conducted séances by appointment. Along with the books he wrote about ghosts and the speaking engagements he provided for local organizations, Simon had managed to create a thriving business. He leaned against the railing, enjoying a moment of contentment.

Or maybe, the calm before the storm, a little voice in the back of his mind warned.

His phone buzzed, and Simon pulled it from his pocket and smiled. “Hey. Miss me?”

“Always.” Homicide lieutenant Vic D’Amato’s voice was a husky rumble. “I just wanted to check what time you finish up tonight. Figured it was my turn to pick up dinner.” The tone in Vic’s voice promised far more than food, and Simon felt the anticipation go right to his dick.

“I should be finished around seven. It’s off-season, so no tours on Mondays. You have a busy day lined up?” Simon asked as he started walking toward his favorite coffee shop.

“Not yet, and I’m hoping it stays that way,” Vic replied. “It’s never a good thing when we’re busy.”

“Let me know if you hear anything official about the storm. I’ve heard six different forecasts, and I haven’t even gotten coffee yet.”

“Sure thing—but don’t expect anything dependable yet. We’re too far out.”

Simon knew how changeable forecasts could be so close to the ocean. Still, Myrtle Beach had barely gotten back on its feet after the last hurricane, so the news of another severe winter storm—hurricane or not—had everyone on edge.

“Be careful out there,” Simon said, letting his voice drop to a growl. “I love you.”

“Love you, too. Stay out of trouble.”

Despite the forecasts, Simon couldn’t help feeling a spring in his step after talking with Vic. They’d been together for less than a year, but Simon was finding it more and more difficult to remember what life was like before meeting his handsome homicide cop. Vic had officially moved into Simon’s retro blue bungalow after the holidays, and while they were still working out their new living situation, Simon had never been happier.”

“The boardwalk might not be busy, but Le Mizzenmast, Simon’s favorite coffee shop, was always bustling. The locals called it Le Miz, not to be confused with the musical. The building had previously been a pirate-themed attraction, and when Tracey Cullen took over, she couldn’t afford to remodel, so she just incorporated the pirate decor into her theme and went with it.

“Hi, Simon!” Tracey called with a wave from behind the register. “You want the usual?” When Simon nodded, Tracey turned to her barista. “One Dread Pirate Roberts and a mocha please!”

Simon took his place in line, remembering how he and Vic had met right here, waiting for coffee. Simon had taken one look at Vic’s muscled body, his dark brown eyes, and the ink on his arms and felt an instant attraction. After all these months and several hair-raising adventures, the magnetism had only gotten stronger. Being in love felt wonderful, and Simon resolved to enjoy every minute of it.”

Excerpt from:  The Rising: A Badlands Novel.

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About the Author

Morgan Brice is the romance pen name of bestselling author Gail Z. Martin. Morgan writes urban fantasy male/male paranormal romance, with plenty of action, adventure and supernatural thrills to go with the happily ever after. Gail writes epic fantasy and urban fantasy, and together with co-author hubby Larry N. Martin, steampunk and comedic horror, all of which have less romance, more explosions. Characters from her Gail books make frequent appearances in secondary roles in her Morgan books, and vice versa.

On the rare occasions Morgan isn’t writing, she’s either reading, cooking, or spoiling two very pampered dogs.

Other books include Witchbane, Burn, Dark Rivers, and Badlands. Watch for more in these series, plus new series coming soon!

Author Links



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My review:

4 stars

The Rising by Morgan Brice follows detective Vic D’Amato and psychic medium Simon Kincaide as they deal with a series of mysterious crimes plaguing Myrtle Beach. Danger escalates as both the weather deteriorates and the death count rises and both men struggle to find a solution that doesn’t require paying the ultimate price.

This gay urban fantasy thriller is part of the ‘Badlands’ series and provides chills and heat as the main characters continue to explore their intense connection and cope with the inimical spirits that are plaguing the town. I’m delighted that these two are adjusting to each other and deepening their relationship but for some reason I felt there was too much repetition as they came to terms with the fact that each has a dangerous profession, and for me, a couple of the intimate encounters, while sizzling, seemed almost gratuitous. Despite that, the mysterious deaths, hostile work environment, troubling visions, and gradual unfolding of the history behind the shipwrecks and the events on land all combine to provide a shivery and fascinating story that also provided cameos by the striking Gabriella and Miss Eppie as well as folks from one of the author’s other series.

These stories provide both an intriguing look at a picturesque and historical town and a believable foray into the world of the paranormal. I think those who enjoy exploring the possibilities of using psychic powers to assist in police detective work with the added bonus of following a couple of charismatic guys should definitely give this tale a try.

A copy of this title was provided to me for review

1 comment:

  1. I love a killer mystery type book. This sounds like it has a lot of the things that I enjoy in a book.