Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Mishap and Retribution Blog Tour Promo Stop and Giveaway (Kindle Touch!!)

Mishap & Retribution
By M.M. Shelley
Mishap Series/Book 3

Genre: YA/ Fantasy/ Sci-Fi
Number of pages: 302

Blurb/Book Description:

At the Dawn of Time a curse against Man was made and only Death will satisfy it. 
The year is 2045 and twins Grasiella and Tatiana who are Cinerian, Fae and Human must choose a side and may find themselves on different sides of an ancient war.

With Tatiana trapped in the Fae realm and learning what life has been like, she has found herself bonding with the Fae. Grasiella seeking the whereabouts of her twin has come to a crossroads of her own. 

Separated and neither knowing the fate of the other, each make their way to an uncertain future.
Death has swept across the Hawaiian Islands and the cost of peace may be too high.

Short Excerpt Mishap and Retribution:

Grasiella kept a safe distance between herself and Missy as she followed her through the thick jungle of the Big Island of Hawaii. Missy was keeping something from her; she could feel it and Grasiella had to know what it was. It was not an easy task to locate Missy or to follow her, Missy was fast and she seemed to fly from tree to tree. She suddenly vaulted onto the ground only to run like a gazelle around the trees and brush. Grasiella had never needed to work so hard at trying to stay concealed; she had experienced a close call the first time that Missy had come crashing to the earth from her high perch in the trees. 
Earlier in the day Missy had agreed to meet with Grasiella after receiving a gnome who had carried the message. Grasiella had needed to swipe a strand of hair from Missy 
without her realizing what she was doing; she had used the strand of hair for a tracking charm. It was the only way that Grasiella was able to keep up with Missy; if not for the charm she would have lost her miles back. 
Over the course of the last few weeks Grasiella’s skills at charms had improved, it was a skill she had never thought to use for anything other than her own amusement. Now she had no choice but to use her magic as a way of discovering the secrets that everyone on the islands seemed to be carrying around with them. Those secrets were pivotal to her and her twin sister Tatiana’s survival.
Missy came to a stop at the base of the Kohala Mountains her body tensed as she stood unmoving. Grasiella used the trunk of a tree to block herself from view and peeked out to watch carefully. It seemed as if the air had become still and the noises of the jungle had come to a halt as she anxiously waited to see what Missy would do next.
Missy’s head rolled to the right, her right arm rose level with her shoulder until it suddenly shot skyward stretching up, her palm opened filling with the light from the sun. Ever so slowly her head rolled to the left and she repeated the movements on the left side of her body. Very slowly her arms began to drop until they rested at her sides and as they dropped a piece of the mountain shifted ever so slightly to the left. Missy kicked out with her left leg jumped into the air and landed on her hands in a handstand position her back to the Kohala Mountains. Her right leg bent backwards and very slowly she touched the mountain with her foot.

Another piece of the mountain shifted aside this time it revealed an opening in the shape of a trillion. Missy pushed against the ground with her hands, swung back around until she was on her feet and strode into the mountain, sealing it shut behind her.

About the Author:

M.M. Shelley is a storyteller, word smith and dreamer. She has traveled the world extensively in search of the magic which is often overlooked in every day life. M.M. Shelley is a native of southern California, and a student of mythology from which she gets much inspiration.

Author web links:

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/MM-Shelley/174012559302730

 Don't forget to check out book 1 Mishap and Mayhem and book 2, Mishap and Chaos!

Also don't forget to enter for a chance to win a paperback copy (5 copies up for grabs!!) of Mishap and Retribution and the grand prize of a Kindle Touch in the Tour Wide Giveaway!

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Cover Reveal: Rua by Miranda Kavi

Book Details:

Rua by Miranda Kavi
Expected Pub: September 3, 2012

A girl with an unknown destiny.

A boy from a hidden world.

When Celeste starts at a new school in a small, Kansas town, she hears whispering voices, has vivid nightmares, and swarms of blackbirds follow her every move. She is oddly drawn to aloof Rylan, the other new student who has his own secrets.

The exact moment she turns seventeen, she wakes to a bedroom full of strange creatures, purple light emanating from her hands, and Rylan breaking in through her bedroom window.

He knows what she is . . .

Intriguing and deeply romantic, RUA is page-turning YA novel with a supernatural twist.

Author Bio:

Miranda Kavi
Miranda Kavi is a YA and Urban Fantasy author. She has worked as an attorney, an executive recruiter, and an assistant in a biological anthropology lab. She loves scary movies, museums, and is hopelessly addicted to chocolate. She lives in the Houston area with her husband and daughter.

Author Links:

Monday, July 30, 2012

Lazy Days of Summer Give@way Hop!

I didn't want this post to get lost in my rush of posts this week so as a reminder I am posting a link to this Hop here.

Please don't forget to check it out and enter the giveaway, lots of great books to be won!!
And thanks again to all of my followers, old and new, you guys are the best!!

Redemption Blog Tour, Giveaway, Guest Post and Book Review!

Book One Penton Legacy series
By Susannah Sandlin
Following a worldwide pandemic whose vaccine left human blood deadly to vampires, the vampire community is on the verge of starvation and panic. Some have fanned into rural areas, where the vaccine was less prevalent, and are taking unsuspecting humans as blood slaves. Others are simply starving, which for a vampire is worse than death—a raging hunger in a creature too weak to feed.

Immune to these struggles—at first—is Penton, a tiny community in rural Chambers County, Alabama, an abandoned cotton mill town that has been repopulated by charismatic vampire Aidan Murphy, his scathe of 50 vampires, and their willingly bonded humans. Aidan has recruited his people carefully, believing in a peaceful community where the humans are respected and the vampires retain a bit of their humanity.

But an unresolved family feud and the paranoia of the Vampire Tribunal descend on Penton in the form of Aidan’s brother, Owen Murphy. Owen has been issued a death warrant that can only be commuted if he destroys Penton—and Aidan, against whom he’s held a grudge since both were turned vampire in 17th-century Ireland.  Owen begins a systematic attack on the town, first killing its doctor, then attacking one of Aidan’s own human familiars

To protect his people, Aidan is forced to go against his principles and kidnap an unvaccinated human doctor—and finds himself falling in love for the first time since the death of his wife in Ireland centuries ago. 

Dr. Krystal Harris, forced into a world she never knew existed, must face up to her own abusive past to learn if the feelings she’s developing for her kidnapper are real—or just a warped, supernatural kind of Stockholm Syndrome in which she’s allowing herself to become a victim yet again.

Susannah Sandlin’s REDEMPTION is the first in the Penton Legacy series. Book two, ABSOLUTION, will be out September 18, and book three, OMEGA, on December 18.

About the Author:

Susannah Sandlin is the author of paranormal romance set in the Deep South, where there are always things that go bump in the night! A journalist by day, Susannah grew up in Alabama reading the gothic novels of Susan Howatch, and always fancied herself living in Cornwall (although she’s never actually been there). Details, details. She also is a fan of Stephen King. The combination of Howatch and King probably explains a lot. Currently a resident of Auburn, Alabama, Susannah has also lived in Illinois, Texas, California, and Louisiana. Her novel Redemption won the paranormal romance category in the 2011 Chicago North RWA Fire and Ice contest, and is the first of three in a series that debuts this year.Website/Blog: http://www.susannahsandlin.com

Guest Post:
The Vampire Summer Olympics: Meet
the Gold Medalists?

Already tired of 24/7 Olympics coverage? Well I, for one, am petitioning the International Olympic Committee to host the new Vampire Olympics. Just think of the marketing possibilities: The Olympics that Bite. Blood Games. These Olympics Don’t Suck. Well, you get the idea.

Here are some suggested events, and who I think would win. In order to remain unbiased, I have intentionally not included any of my own vampires in the list, although I see some possibilities, and rest assured they’ll be in training for the next Games.

Vampire Olympic Event: Brooding
Gold Medalist: Bill Compton (Southern Vampires). What a whiner. Soo-kay did well to rid herself of Vampire Bill.
Runner-up: Edward Cullen (Twilight). Seriously. Get over yourself, kid—go off and sparkle somewhere.

Vampire Olympic Event: Iron Man
Gold Medalist: Rhage (Black Dagger Brotherhood). Six-eight, 280 pounds, and can turn into a dragon. What more could you want, really?
Runner-up: Jean-Claude (Anita Blake). Iron man is more than just physical strength, and Jean-Claude has some scary powers, including the ability to control werewolves. If he’d ditch that unhealthy infatuation with Anita, he’d be at the top.

Vampire Olympic Event: Hair and Style
Gold Medalist: Pam (Southern Vampires). Pam is cute, preppy, and snarks to kill. Everybody wants to be Pam’s friend. Well, unless she has you for dinner.
Runner-up: Jean-Claude (Anita Blake). The man has long, dark curls and a never-ending supply of vintage velvet and lace. And swings not only both ways but every-which way.

Vampire Olympic Event: Scheming and Plotting
Gold Medalist: Eric Northman (Southern Vampires). And he’s been scheming since his days as a Viking, so he’s very, very good at it.
Runner-up: Legion. Truly, most vampires excel in this category because they’ve often had centuries with nothing else to do. Eric’s not necessarily better at it, just more entertaining.

Vampire Olympic Event: Drinking (non-blood category)
Gold Medalist: Vishous (Black Dagger Brotherhood), representing Grey Goose Vodka. My man V would also win the Whips and Floggers category, if there were one.
Runner-up: Butch O’Neill (Black Dagger Brotherhood), but only because V’s had more years to overindulge.

Vampire Olympic Event: Vampire Special Olympics
Gold Medalist: Wrath (Black Dagger Brotherhood). He might be blind but he sees what you’re up to. True dat.
Runner-up: Phury (Black Dagger Brotherhood). He’s missing a leg? Who needs two legs?

Head Coach: Bones, aka Crispin (Night Huntress). I mean did you see how the man, er, vampire ran poor Cat into the ground? Bones knows how to crack a whip.
Assistant Coach: Ivy Tamwood (Hollows). Ivy can devise the game plans, print out instructions, draw maps, and be finished in time for a quick sip of blood before dinner.

The Vampire Olympic Games are held in loving memory of Kisten Phelps. Those of you who’ve read Kim Harrison’s Hollows series know why.

How about you? Other events you can think of? Who would win?

My Thoughts and Review:

It is no secret that I love reading about vampires. I really have no idea why I am so drawn to stories about them.

Maybe it is the whole idea of good versus evil. Of how love can conquer all or maybe I just like watching them battle with trying to fight the darkness inside and (usually) winning.

Either way, I am drawn to them. And while I love reading about them so much, I also love reading new and different ideas and theories about them because lets face it, no matter how much you love something, the same ole same ole gets tiring and even boring after awhile.

Which might also be why the idea and storyline of Redemption appealed to me so much. I liked the idea of a pandemic sweeping the population of the human world and the side effects of it on the humans blood their blood toxic to vamps, therefore putting their lives (or undead existence) in jeopardy.

And of course, the big bad alpha male falling in love, is always a fun story line as well. :P

This book did not disappoint. Krys and Aidan were great characters, both with a past that was less than stellar at times and both has a lot to overcome.

I absolutely loved their romance and the storyline about vampires was pretty darn entertaining and kept me turning the pages wanting more. I found that once I picked this book up, I had a really hard time putting it down.

I truly didn't want it to end. I don't always find myself saying that at the end of vamp books, I would like to say I love them all and that they are all original but lets face it, they aren't. But this one truly is. It has enough new stuff in it to captivate and enough of the other stuff I like in other vamp books I have enjoyed to make it even better and to pull me into even more.

This is a series and author that I will be keeping on eye on. I liked the writing style, the characters, the storyline..pretty much all of it.

I will be watching and anxiously awaiting the next book.

I give this one 4.5 Stars!

Don't forget to enter the giveaway below to win a copy (e-book or paperback) of Redemption and a chance to win a $50 Gift Card!!

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Sunday, July 29, 2012

Author Interview: D.S. Anderson

Today I get to bring you a very special interview with Author D.S. Anderson and her YA Sci-Fi, World After.

Book Description:
This book is about a young girl, living in our world hundreds of years after it has been decimated by plague and an earth-sized earthquake. A new element has changed the DNA, giving people new powers. She must find courage and survive a journey of being kidnapped twice, visiting oracles, and fighting the bad guy. Along the way, she may also find love.

Author Bio:
I don't know how to write a bio about myself. I'll just try to tell you about me. I am a stay-at-home mom of two rambunctious, mischievous boys, ages 6 and 4.  I go to school full time for Creative Writing. I have lived in Utah my whole life, although I really want to move to California. I love to dance, I was on the Ballroom team at my high school, write, cook, eat, and read. I am excited to be breaking into the writing world.

Author Interview:

MGO: "Thank you so much Diana for being here today and agreeing to do an interview with me! I guess my first question for you would be, Did you always know you wanted to be a writer?"

D.S.: "No. In fact, throughout the years, I have changed my mind many times about what I've wanted to do besides being a mom. But I have been writing stories for as long as I can remember."

MGO: "I am always curious what authors read in their free time. What was the last book you read?"

D.S.: "It was the most recent in a series by Rachel Ann Nunes. It's titled "Final Call." It's about a woman who has the power to touch objects and recall powerful memories other people have left "imprinted" on that object. She uses this power to solve crimes."

MGO: "Do you get to spend much time reading when you aren't writing?"

D.S.: "Ha ha. No. Between kids, school (mine and theirs), and life in general, I have to make the time to read."

MGO: "What did you want to be when you were little?"

D.S.: "Oh, so many things. An actress, a teacher, a cowgirl, a dentist,  a journalist. At one point I wanted to drive my car around and clean up garbage. There were more, but I can't remember them right now."

MGO: "Most influential person in your life?"

D.S.: "My sister, Krystal. I have always looked up to her, even to this day."

MGO: "In 15 words or less tell us about your book."

D.S.: "The apocalypse came. Hundreds of years later, the survivors must fight or die trying."

MGO: "Who was your favorite character(s) to write about?"

"I like Terrance. He's complicated but caring; he's a fighter; there's a lot more to him than "meets the eye."  I had a hard time writing about Camille, the heroine, because I didn't want her to have to hurt too much. I had to go back and re-write fight scenes so it didn't seem too nice. =)"

MGO: "Thank you so much again for being here today Diana and for letting us get to know you and your new book a little better!"

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Indie Book of the Week; Shackled by Angela Carling

Every once in a while you come across a book that just leaves you reeling with emotion and truly just blows you away.
This weeks Indie Book of the Week is one such book.

I can't even say enough about this book, it was just that good. I am so sad that I have had this sitting in my TBR pile for awhile before finally picking it up. I had no idea what I was missing out on.

This weeks Indie Book of the Week goes to Angela Carling and her amazing book Shackled

Book Description:

After shy, quiet Lucy and her family move from their small hometown in Minnesota to Seattle, Washington, she is surprised when Ryan, the most popular boy at school asks her out. Soon, she is swept up in a whirlwind romance and her na├»ve and trusting nature allows her to fall head over heels in love with her too-good-to-be suitor. Suddenly, Lucy finds herself enraptured by the excitement of her new relationship, leaving her blinded to the warning signs of danger ahead. Can her fairy tale romance last, or will she find that her prince charming is more like a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

My Thoughts and Review:
To say this was a powerful novel would be an understatement. This was so much more.

This novel was truly so well written. So well voiced.

Sensitive topis of abuse can be so hard to write about but Carling handles this so well that it will blow your mind.

I am actually a little speechless to be honest. Maybe I should just say that the characters in this book are completely unforgettable and that I will be thinking about them for a very long time. Long after the book has been put down and long after I move on to another.

If I gave this book any less than 5 Stars I would be doing a huge injustice to the author and to other readers who will come across this review. I would give this book more stars if I could, I really would.

Maybe because this is a topic that is so near and dear to my heart that I understand how hard it was for the author to write. Maybe that is why it gripped me so much and left me feeling a whirlwind of emotions. Whatever the reason, this is a book you really must read.

It is intense and raw and even a little gritty.

I applaud the author for a job well done, for a story and characters beautifully written. I will definitely be checking her other books out and buying them up.

I think I may have just found another new author to love.

5 Very Solid, 5 Very Well Deserved Stars!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Lazy Days of Summer Giveaway Hop!!

Once again I am very excited to be participate in another great giveaway hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and Colorimetry!

This giveaway runs from July 27th through August 1st and the winner will be contacted on August 2nd, they will have two days (48 hours) to contact me back, if not another winner will be chosen.

Now that all that boring stuff is out of the way, lets get on to the good stuff, like what the prizes actually are!

I have been thinking a lot about what I love to read during the summer and I always love a good romance, some paranormal and a good YA book so...why not have more than one choice for the winner to choose from. 
Sound good to you?

So without further ado, the winner will be able to choose one of the following paperbacks to be shipped to them or the one e-book choice to be gifted to them by me through Amazon.

First up (this is the e-book version):

Second Choice:

Third Choice:

And last but not least:

Please fill out the Rafflecopter form below to enter and remember to check out all the other blogs also participating in this great hop!
List can be found HERE

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Shades of Desire Blog Tour, Author Interview and Book Review!

Today I am so excited to be a part of the Shades of Desire Blog Tour. I fell in love with this series after the first book, Shades of Gray and to be able to help get the word out about this truly fabulous series is an honor.

This is one of those series that you really really shouldn't pass over. It has been a long time since I have found an Urban Fantasy series that I absolutely love and have fun reading too.

A also was lucky enough to talk L.M. to coming here today and doing an interview with me as well, thank you L.M.!!

So without further ado, I bring you Shades of Desire by L.M. Pruitt!

Shades of Desire

By L.M. Pruitt

Book 2 Jude Magdalyn Series


All I wanted was a little peace and quiet.

Instead, I've got dead Covenant members and a steady stream of letters from the new guy in town. His beverage of choice? A 2002 Merlot, with a shot or two of powerful virgin blood.

On top of that, I'm breaking in a new police liaison, failing at playing matchmaker, and fighting nausea like it's a full time
job. All I wanted was a little peace and quiet.

Instead, I've got dead Covenant members and a steady stream of letters from the new guy in town. His beverage of choice? A 2002 Merlot, with a shot or two of powerful virgin blood.

On top of that, I'm breaking in a new police liaison, failing at playing matchmaker, and fighting nausea like it's a full time job.

Did I forget to mention that I've also got enough girls living at the Crossroads to start my own boarding school?

Peace and quiet? Out the window.

Buy Links Kindle

Book 1 Shades of Gray for your Kindle, in Paperback

Excerpt Shades of Desire

If someone doesn’t get me a lemon in the next five minutes, everyone will suffer. A lot.”
Jude, I love you. Which is why I can say you’re being just a little overdramatic.” One look at my face and Theo changed his tune. “But then again, you could say pregnancy is dramatic and you’re just getting into the groove.”
Nice save.” I tried to sit up again. Halfway through the upward movement greasy waves of nausea rolled over me and I eased back down onto the pillow. Strands of black hair clung to my sweaty face and I closed my eyes, exhaling slowly. “Not as nice as that lemon would be right now, but nice.”
Elizabeth will be here in a moment. No doubt she’ll have a lemon. And tea. And toast.” Theo turned over to face me, laying one hand over my still mostly flat stomach. If you looked close, you could see the smallest of bumps.
I know, because I checked. Every other day or so.
If anybody told me three months ago, that the week before Halloween, I’d be lying in bed with a man who absolutely adored me—even the crazy parts—I’d have asked them what the hell they were smoking. If they’d thrown in being pregnant, I would have punched them in their jaw. Then gone to the store and bought a dozen pregnancy tests and prayed for them all to be negative.
But that was before the Covenant.
In two weeks, I’d gone from being an orphan raised by nuns, to the latest in a long line of only daughters. Women charged with the protection and well-being of hundreds of people with unique powers. Some made flame burn for hours, while others called the wind to knock you flat on your ass. They were a group of people who came together over two-hundred years ago, bound by a prophecy. One with no past, lost in the present, will bring in the future, through gifts of both this world and the next.
And lucky me, I’d passed the job interview.
I’d sent Hart to a muddy, watery grave-literally. Unless something went crazy wrong, he’d stay under the Mississippi until the Final Judgment. Williams ruled the vampires of the city now and kept his distance as much as possible.
And I, Jude Magdalyn Henries, led the Covenant. Maybe I wasn’t terrific at it. But Gillian would be proud.

All things considered, I think I came out with a pretty good deal.

About the Author:
L.M. Pruitt has been reading and writing for as long as she can remember. A native of Florida with a love of New Orleans, she has the uncanny ability to find humor in most things and would probably kill a plastic plant. She is the author of the Jude Magdalyn Series as well as New Moon Rising, featuring Cari Gravier, and Taken, featuring Frankie Post. She is currently at work on the next book in the Moon Rising series, Harvest Moon Rising, due out April 2012. Ms. Pruitt makes her home in Florida with two cats--one smart, the other not so much.


Author Interview:

MGO: "Thank you so much for agreeing to be here today L.M., I have to say, I am hooked on your series and am blown away by the writing. When did you first know that you wanted to be a writer?"

L.M.: "I don’t think there was any single moment where the light bulb went on over my head. I always made up stories and wrote them down, but I never thought of making writing a career—too much risk, not enough security. But you can’t really walk away from what you’re meant to do and be, so one day I just decided to go for it. And it’s been one of my best decisions by far."

MGO: "In 10 words or less, tell us who your favorite character to write about was and why?"

L.M.: "Joanne Watson (Winged, January 2013)-- she may be vulnerable but she kicks ass."

MGO: "Last great book you read?"

L.M.: "Ooh, tough call. The last new book I read was Nora Roberts’s The Witness and I believe all her books are amazing. Possibly my favorite book of all time is Douglas Preston and Lincoln Childs’s The Relic."

MGO: "Favorite movie of all time?"

L.M.: "Dangerous Beauty. It’s based on the life of a Venetian courtesan and is just phenomenal."

MGO: "Werewolf, fairy, witch, vampire or something other?"

L.M.: "Um…fairy/witch hybrid?"

MGO: "What is in the works next?"

L.M.: "I’m working on the next Frankie Post novel, Borrowed, due out mid-September. After that is the fourth Jude Magdalyn book, scheduled for a late October release. And stay tuned for the release of Winged in 2013, the first book in a brand new series."

MGO: "Oh a new series, how exciting!! Once again, thank you so much L.M. for being here today and also for letting me be a part of this Tour and getting to know your wonderful series. It truly has become a favorite and I can't wait to read the third book!"

My Thoughts and Review:

I got hooked with this series after the first book. I fell in love with Jude's sarcastic witty personality and fabulous one liners. I love how tough and just all around kick butt she is. She has a heart of gold and is always looking out for the underdog. She isn't perfect by any means and she know it and accepts it. She doesn't ever pretend to be someone she isn't and she could give a rat's you know what, if someone has a problem with it.

She has a lot of responsibilities on her shoulders as leader of the Covenant and she somehow takes it all in strides.

The secondary characters in this series are just as good as Jude. Theo, Claire, Elizabeth, Lies, Rian...I can't help but love them all as well. They are all so different yet they all fit together and have become one big, mostly happy, family.

It is hard to say what makes this series so fantastic because there is just so much that makes it fantastic. I laugh out loud throughout the whole book and if I am not laughing I have a great big smile on my face.

This is just so well written. The serious parts are serious and the heartfelt parts grab a hold of your heartstrings and make you teary eyed.

Pruitt knows how to write great memorable characters and create a great world where witches and vamps run wild and magic is always in the air.

I don't want to give anything away but this sequel was even better than the first, filled with fabulous old characters I have learned to love and new ones that are just as memorable as the old ones.

This is such a great fun series. I have already purchased the third book and can't wait to dive into it.

I give this one 4.5 Stars!

Don't forget to check out the first book in the series, Shades of Gray!

Shades of Gray
Book One
By L.M. Pruitt

Jude Magdalyn Henries lives what many would call an unconventional life. 

Orphaned at birth, raised by nuns, a teenage runaway living on the streets... she now earns a living at odd jobs, including one as a fake tarot card reader. Very little about Jude's life appears normal, by any scale. 

When she accepts a gig to do a private reading, unconventional takes on an entirely new meaning. Life as she knows it ends when she's thrust into a world she never knew existed-one filled with magic, vampires, and her beloved New Orleans on the verge of an underground war. 

To make matters worse, she's got two men in her life vying for attention, Williams and Theo. Both call to a different part of her, but one scares her just a little bit. 

Can she step up to the challenges set before her and make the right choices for the greater good?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Hallowed Ones Blog Tour, Guest Post and Book Review!

Book Description:

If your home was the last safe place on earth, would you let a stranger in?
In this captivating thriller, an Amish settlement is the last safe haven in a world plagued by an unspeakable horror…
Katie is on the verge of her Rumspringa, the time in Amish life when teenag-ers are free to experience non-Amish culture before officially joining the church. But before Rumspringa arrives, Katie’s safe world starts to crumble. It begins with a fiery helicopter crash in the cornfields, followed by rumors of massive unrest and the disappearance of huge numbers of people all over the world. Something is out there...and it is making a killing.
Unsure why they haven’t yet been attacked, the Amish Elders make a de-cree: No one goes outside their community, and no one is allowed in. But when Katie finds a gravely injured young man lying just outside the bounda-ry of their land, she can’t leave him to die. She refuses to submit to the Elder’s rule and secretly brings the stranger into her community-but what else is she bringing in with him.

 About The Author:
Laura Bickle has worked in the unholy trinity of politics, criminology, and technology for several years. She and her chief muse live in the Midwest, owned by four mostly-reformed feral cats.

Her work has been published in Midnight Times, Down in the Cellar, MicroHorror, Theaker's Quarterly Fiction,Ballista , Byzarium, New Myths,a Blog-O-Novella office soap opera for True Office Confessions, and Aoife's Kiss. Her most recent project is the Embers series of urban fantasy novels for Juno-Pocket Books.

She can be e-mailed at: laura@salamanderstales.com. She's blogging on writing at: www.salamanderstales.blogspot.com.

She also writes under the name of Alayna Williams.

Guest Post:

Word Debris
by Laura Bickle

I tend to hang on to a lot of things. Pictures from vacations. Jeans that I swear that I'll be able to get back into once I lose ten pounds. A prairie skirt that I'm convinced is going to come back in fashion.

But mostly, I hoard words. And word-related things. As a writer, I'm constantly doing research, filing ideas and images in the back of my head. Sometimes, that manifests in the physical world. And an odd collection of things begins to grow at my desk.

First are project notebooks. I keep an old-fashioned paper notebook for each book I write. They're largely illegible, containing scribbled notes and outlines, pasted scraps of articles, and bent photos. But I know where everything is. It gives me a sense of accomplishment to see how I've progressed through the project - all my entries are marked with a date. They are, in their ways, journals, charting the word counts and progress of the project over time.

Next is the inspiring artwork. My desk is made of an old six-panel door placed across a couple of file cabinets. I've covered the top with glass to give me a smooth writing surface that allows me to slip treasures underneath. When I start on a new project,  I change the artwork. Nearly anything can find its way into that collection: Tarot cards, calendar pictures, magazine clippings. They may be silent, but they help inspire words in some way or other.

Finally, there's the tactile debris of the project, strewn across my desk...well, until a cat finds it and absconds with it. This collection is ever-changing. It can include anything from coins to feathers and bits of sea glass. I now have a cluster of clear quartz perched beside my keyboard. I picked it because it reminds me of a setting in my work in progress. I find myself absently stroking it when I edit, like a spiny worry stone. It's holding down a black raven feather that I found in the yard. The feather is occasionally snatched away and mauled by one of my cats, so it's in pretty rough shape. But I still like looking at it.

I know that I'm finishing a story when the desk is full. When I can visualize the world and characters in all their detail, just by flipping through pages or letting my fingers roam over the space. I know the characters' landscape through the miniature diorama on my desk.

There's a certain amount of sadness when a project is finished. I clear out the knickknacks. I take the pictures out from under the glass. I file my tattered notebook on the shelf, take out a crisp new one with unmarked pages and place it on the desk.

It's a blank slate. A new beginning. A little scary.

But then something new catches my eye.

It's an oddly-speckled rock. It looks like an egg.

I place it at the center of my desk. It's the beginning of a new hoard of words.


Alayna Williams (a.k.a. Laura Bickle) has worked in the unholy trinity of politics, criminology, and technology for several years. She lives in the Midwestern U.S. with her chief muse, owned by four mostly-reformed feral cats. Writing as Laura Bickle, she's the author of EMBERS and SPARKS for Pocket - Juno Books. Writing as Alayna Williams, she's the author of DARK ORACLE and ROGUE ORACLE. More info on her urban fantasy and general nerdiness is here: www.salamanderstales.com



The more you know about the future, the more there may be to fear.

Tara Sheridan is the best criminal profiler around - and the most unconventional. Trained as a forensic psychologist, Tara also specializes in Tarot card reading. But she doesn't need her divination skills to realize that the new assignment from her friend and sometime lover, Agent Harry Li, is a dangerous proposition in every way.

Former Cold War operatives, all linked to a top-secret operation tracking the disposal of nuclear weapons in Russia, are disappearing. There are no bodies, and no clues to their whereabouts. Harry suspects a conspiracy to sell arms to the highest bidder. The cards - and Tara's increasingly ominous dreams - suggest something darker. Even as Tara sorts through her feelings for Harry and her fractured relationships with the mysterious order known as Delphi's Daughters, a killer is growing more ruthless by the day. And a nightmare that began decades ago in Chernobyl will reach a terrifying endgame that not even Tara could have foreseen…

ROGUE ORACLE is available now from Amazon.com - http://www.amazon.com/Rogue-Oracle-Alayna-Williams/dp/1439182817/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1289449573&sr=8-1

and Barnes & Noble - http://search.barnesandnoble.com/Rogue-Oracle/Alayna-Williams/e/9781439182819/?itm=1&USRI=rogue+oracle

My Thoughts and Review:

I wasn't sure what to expect from The Hallowed Ones. The sweet cover didn't really shout, thriller or even paranormal to me.
Do not let the innocent sweet cover fool you. This book is all that it promises and more.

This isn't your typical book about a dystopian world ruled by vampires. These aren't your fun loving sparkling vamps either. These are serious, blood sucking, glowing red eye, body destroying monsters.

The kind that nightmares are made out of.

I really liked Katie. She was such a strong brave character. I couldn't imagine being in an Amish community like the one she was in and having to make the decision and choices that she did to protect those she loved and to do what was right while risking her whole future. She risked being banned from her community, being shunned and thrown out and still she made the right choices. The compassionate choices.

She didn't want to sit around and watch those she knew and loved make bad choices and put the rest of her community under threat. She has a really good head on her shoulders, I really admired that about her. It couldn't have been easy.

I felt sad for her at times. Her whole world was changed in an instant. Things and people she knew were different and they would never be the same again. She would never be the same again.

The romance in this one was very subtle, but very sweet all the same. I really liked how it ended. Katie's future was still up in the air and anything was possible but it left it open for a sequel, which I really hope there will be one soon because I would love to read more of her story and to see where she and the others go from here. To see what the Outside world has become.

I don't want to go into too much detail because I don't want to ruin the story for anyone else but if you are looking for something different. For vampires that are evil and bad. For a dystopian unlike others out there right now, then this is one read you really shouldn't miss.

I give this one a very solid 4 Stars!