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Oscar Wilde

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Short Tales of Horror Part II by Regina Puckett

Published: September 2nd, 2014
Cover Artist– Ryan Jorgensen owns copyright on photo. Charity Parkerson put together the book cover.

Description:

Ours 
While Sheriff Wilson has no idea what really transpired the night twelve people were murdered in the old mental hospital during what was supposed to be a simple night of ghost hunting, he was at the scene moments after the lone survivor committed suicide. Now it’s a year later and a group of paranormal investigators want to set up a haunted house and invite the general public in that same abandoned mental hospital. How is he supposed to keep that many people safe from whoever or whatever killed the last group? 

Silent Baby Screams 
Gwen doesn't understand why her husband resents their newborn baby so much, but she never suspects that one day she'll return home from work to discover their baby boy has simply vanished. What happens next is the stuff of nightmares. 

Lucky Thirteen 
Thirteen black cats help keep watch over a bedridden, old lady. Sometimes the number thirteen is lucky but then again it might just depend on it who you are. 

Pay Back 
There’s nothing usual about Jeremy waking up late for school, but on this particular morning something feels different. When he goes downstairs to face the music, he finds his grandmother waiting for him but no one else appears to be at home. Jeremy believes he’s caught a lucky break and his mother and father won’t get to know, but he soon discovers that not everything is as it seems. He finds he’ll have to face up to his mistakes, though, and maybe even suffer a little payback himself. 

Slimmer 
Sandy loves her new boyfriend, but ever since they moved in together, Donald won’t get off her back about how much she eats. When he offers her a new miracle diet pill, she decides to try one just to shut him up. Unfortunately, there are unexpected side effects that take them both by terrifying surprise. 

Sam I am 
The morning after moving into her dream home with her young daughter and husband, Paige learns that the three story, 18th century house might be haunted. She then finds that her daughter has a new imaginary friend called Sam I Am. It isn’t long before Paige’s perfect home turns into a living nightmare.

EXCERPT


Ours

“Something drained its battery. Sometimes that happens when a spirit is nearby. Why don’t you try asking Wallace a few questions? Maybe he likes men better than women. After all he only kidnapped, raped and killed little boys. “

There nothing Alan wanted less than to try and communicate with a dead serial killer but he had forced his way in with the group so the least he could do was try in fit in. “He liked little boy’s. I don’t think he’s going to be interested in my type. I’m a little old for his taste.” 

Rhonda didn’t say anything but continued to stare at him. He finally shrugged. “Why the hell not?” He turned toward the empty room and tried not to feel like a damn fool. It was a good thing none of his deputies could see him talking to a ghost. “If you’re with us, Wallace Webster, you should know the world’s a better place without you in it. You were the lowest form of scrum bag and I think it’s a damn shame you were granted the pleasure of dying of old age in here instead of getting the electric chair like you deserved.”

Rhonda elbowed him. “Ask a question and stop antagonizing him.”

Alan glared at her. “Fine.” He closed his eyes and tried to think of a good question. “Why did you hurt those innocent children?” All of the K2 meters lit up.

Rhonda leaned over and grabbed her backpack. She dug around until she found the recorder. “Ask him something else. “

Alan stood and walked over into the circle of K2 meters. “Why, you Son of a Bitch. Why?” He felt a sharp stinging sensation across the back of his neck before cold air enveloped him. Just as he was reaching back to rub the painful area, a putrid smell filled the air and a voice right next to his ear whispered. “Mine.” Without even thinking, he asked, “Why?” There was a sinister laugh and another sharp painful slash across his neck and then down the full length of his back. He went to step out of the circle until something bumped against the side of his leg. The air around him became soupy and every breath became harder and harder to draw in. 

When he made another move to leave the circle several things happened at once; it felt as if a large hand gripped onto his shoulder, a breathe of foul air filled his nose and the room became crammed with small black shadows. Another whisper finally answered his question. “My children.” Alan forced his legs to move but he only made it a few steps when the black forms rushed to surround him. It felt as if several pairs of small hands were tugging at his pants’ legs and there were arms wrapping around both of his legs. The air overflowed with agitated murmurings and whispers.

Every hair on Alan’s body stood up from the static electricity in the room. He blinked his eyes several times trying to focus on the tiny black shadows which had suddenly appeared out of nowhere. They were all inside of the circle of K2 meters and the lights on the meters were flashing on and off like crazy. The shadows were darker than the room’s darkness. They were completely void of any light and the feelings emanating from them were if they were totally void of any happiness. 

It wasn’t so much the touching or even the presence of the black shadows that bothered Alan. It was those feelings of pain and anguish that were slowly leaching away his own happiness. He could sense they needed his help and this was the only way they knew how to ask for it. He broke out in a cold sweat, and just as the coldness was beginning to seep into his skin, frantic screaming came from somewhere else in the hospital.




About the author:
Regina Puckett is an award nominated author for her short story, Balloon Wishes.
Concealed in My Heart is a Readers' Favorite Book Award Winner.
Claimed by Sin is nominated for 2014 Ellora's Cave Golden Ankh award.
Concealed in My Heart won runner-up in the international 2014 MARSocial Author of the Year Competition.
Borrowed Wings, has received the Children's Literary Classics Seal of Approval.
Memories won first place in the 1st WSBR International Poetry Contest. This poem may be found in her book of poetry, Tilting at Windmills and Words.
Slowly Drowning won second place in the 3rd WSBR International Poetry Contest. This poem may be found in her poetry book, My Words into the Beyond.
Sir Galahad Comes to the Rescue won third place in the 3rd WSBR International Poetry Contest. This poem may be found in her book of poetry, Ramblings and Dreams.
Her collection of poetry, Fireflies, won 2013 Turning Pages Poetry Book of the Year.
She writes sweet romances, horror, inspirational, picture books and poetry. There are several projects in various stages of completion and there are always characters and stories waiting for their chance to finally get out of her head and onto paper.


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Divine secrets that have the power to shatter lives - Fallen (Daughters of the Gods #3) by Tamara Gill

Happy Release Day! 

Description:

Sara Daniels needs to change her life, so she sets out to run her late grandmother’s farm. With no man at her side, and deserted by friends who can’t abide her obsession with mythology, it’s the perfect time to escape.

Hermes, favored son of Zeus, has been framed by his hateful stepmother, Hera. Fleeing Olympus with his life, he finds himself in an abandoned farmhouse in the middle of nowhere. It’s the ideal place to hide from Zeus that is until the owner— a woman with long, flaming red hair and the darkest blue eyes he’s ever seen — decides to move in.

Sara’s family has divine secrets that even she’s not privy to. Hermes’ secrets, however, have the power to shatter their lives. And with a god as your farmhand, it’s only a matter of time before those secrets are revealed in all their destructive glory. 

But the wild attraction that blazes between these two souls will not be denied…even if the outcome threatens to doom them both.

About the author:
Tamara is an Australian author who grew up in an old mining town in country South Australia, where her love of history was founded. So much so, she made her darling husband travel to the UK for their honeymoon, where she dragged him from one historical monument and castle to another.

A mother of three, her two little gentlemen in the making, a future Lady (she hopes) and a part-time job keep her busy in the real world, but whenever she gets a moment’s peace she loves to write romance novels in an array of genres, including regency, medieval and paranormal.

Tamara loves hearing from readers and writers alike. You can contact her through her website, and sign up to follow her blog or newsletter.

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She reclaims her humanity - Dark Genesis (The Darkling Trilogy # 1) by A. D. Koboah

Cover Artist: Idobookcovers

Description:

Life for a female slave is one of hardship and unspeakable sorrow, something Luna knows only too well. But not even she could have foreseen the terror that would befall her one sultry Mississippi evening in the summer of 1807. 

On her way back from a visit to see the African woman, a witch who has the herbs Luna needs to rid her of her abusive master’s child, she attracts the attention of a deadly being that lusts for blood. Forcibly removed from everything she knows by this tormented otherworldly creature, she is sure she will be dead by sunrise.

Dark Genesis is a love story set against the savage world of slavery in which a young woman who has been dehumanised by its horrors finds the courage to love, and in doing so, reclaims her humanity

In its own quiet way, “Dark Genesis” really brings home vividly and concretely the depradations of American slavery. Everyone suffered, and no one won, not even the white wives and children. One of the important themes the author examines is “dehumanization,” and it is brought to life with incredible impact. This is not a novel that can easily be forgotten. - Goodreads

Rising Dark is the long awaited sequel to Dark Genesis and takes us from London 1757 to present day America in a love story that defies, time, death and the all-too-human flaws inherent in mortals and immortals alike.

When the newly married Reverend Avery Wentworth embarks on a journey to the Americas to begin a new life, he foresees only joy ahead of him. But along with the shocking evils prevalent in a world of slavery, he comes against a much older, darker evil that steals his soul and turns him into a creature of the night. Cut off from humanity, he wanders through a wilderness of despair. A nameless, faceless creature forced to exist in the shadows, his only hope for salvation is the vision of a beautiful Negro and three words: Wait for me.

EXCERPT



There were rare moments when the full horror of a female slave’s life fell on me and I felt that now when I glanced up at the woods and the path I would take back to the house. An all-encompassing despair rocked me from head to toe. I didn’t want to go back to a life of bondage. I didn’t want to go back to my quarters and drink the evil concoction which would hunt down and kill the innocent in my womb. I didn’t want to go back to a life where I saw evil practiced with ease and nonchalance, a life in which evens my body was not mine to own. 

Master John had been away for the past week but when I got back to my cabin tonight and fell asleep, would I find myself jolted awake by him, his form looming over me in the pale light of the moon streaming through the open window, his male tool already awake and straining against the cotton of his trousers? 

The mere thought caused me to double over with my arms wrapped around my waist, my face close to the water and the rocks beneath its surface. 

The cause of most of my problems lay in the face that was almost lost in the watery surface now that the light was gone. I reached my hand into the stream and pulled out a large black rock. It looked as if it had split in two and the split end was as sharp as the blade of a knife. I held that rock up above my face and thought about Mama Akosua being brought to a strange land against her will at the age of fifteen. I thought about how lost and frightened she must have felt being so far from everything she knew and loved, and the strength and fearlessness she displayed when she took a blade to her own face and cut those marks into her skin. In doing so, she had honored and held onto the customs of her people, people she would never see again. Those scars that I had previously been repulsed by and seen as part of the savage ways of her past, had given her strength. They had been a way to take ownership of at least one part of her body and keep it forever hers. 

I would do the same thing. I would take control of at least one aspect of my life and destroy the face that drew men like Master John to me like predators to the scent of fresh blood. I would use this rock to take away the pleasure he found in looking at this face and keep him out of my bed forever. 

I brought the sharpest point of the rock down to rest in the middle of my forehead and closed my eyes. I began to apply pressure until I felt it break the skin, a point no bigger than the tip of my fingernail, and felt a warm release of blood. Strangely, I felt no pain, only exhilaration that I could finally do something to stop the terror inflicted on me by my Master. 

I was about to bring the rock down my forehead, across my nose and down my cheek, when something, some force, stayed my hand. All at once I grew cold and it felt as if the air around my wrist was alive and humming softly in tune to some sinister beat, making goose bumps spring up along my forearm. 

I pushed down with all my might but miraculously this force increased and when I felt my hand begin to move away from my face, I opened my eyes. 

I was still facing the woods and for a moment I thought I saw something amongst the trees, a sliver of something that was an almost translucent white. At the same moment I experienced a wave of dizziness that made me feel as if my mind and body had turned to water. I quickly shut my eyes but the dizziness increased and I felt myself swaying, my thoughts and emotions a confusing melee, and I heard a voice in my head. Or was it my own voice? 

That will not stop him, it said. 

My eyes snapped open when I heard a sharp crack to my right. I whirled around to trace the sound, a sharp streak of fear leaping and twisting within me. It was only when I noticed that my hand was now empty and clenched into a fist that I realized that what I had heard was the sound of the rock I had just been holding hitting one of the trees on my right. The distance to that tree was a good seven or eight meters away. Had I really thrown it that far? 

I got to my feet uneasily, knowing that I needed to get away from the chapel immediately. Something was very wrong here. The light was nearly gone now and there was something here with me. I could feel it now, an immense power unfolding and drawing strength as the last of the light seeped out of the sky. 

Terror beat furiously within me, radiating to my very core. Mama Akosua had been right. I shouldn’t have come here. I was in danger, I... 

Intoxicating dizziness washed over me again and although I tried to fight against its pull it drew me in, causing me to close my eyes and sway in time to its suffocating rhythm... 

And then I was standing at the kitchen door of the main house, having walked through the woods from the chapel and back to the house with no memory of the journey. 




About the author: 
I am the author of The Darkling Trilogy, an unconventional and epic love story between a vampire and a slave girl. The trilogy was inspired by my thoughts on dehumanization. 

I was fascinated by the ways in which people are able to dehumanize others, the impact it has on the psyche and whether it is possible for people to find their way back from being dehumanized. 

This led me to a slave called Luna and the ruins of a haunted chapel deep in the heart of Mississippi. 

Coming of age was never so intense - A Place Halfway (SYNSK #3) by K.C. Finn

Happy Release Day!

Description: 16+

A struggling psychic girl steps out into the big, wide world amidst the murky depths of racial segregation in England, 1961.

As a teenage psychic, Josephine Fontaine knows what it’s like to be different. At Peregrine Place, a school full of youngsters with gifts just like hers, sixteen-year-old Josie is growing tired of her life and looking for excitement beyond the grand manor house’s walls. When an opportunity arises to work in a local music bar, she jumps at the chance, learning to balance her new job with the pressures of studying the ways of the Synsk.

There she meets the charming Tommy Asher, a fellow psychic with a talent for music, and Jake Bolton, a handsome, surly stranger with coffee-coloured skin. Throw in the return of her old crush Dai Bickerstaff, and Josie finds herself embroiled in a drama much bigger than she could have imagined, especially when certain parties take issue to her developing a friendship with a boy who isn’t white-skinned. When a mysterious record mogul offers Josie help to improve her psychic gifts, her world turns totally upside down, and she begins to question everything she thought she knew about the world, her family, and even herself.

Coming of age was never so intense as it will be for Josie in the winter of 1961.

EXCERPT


“When you’ve quite finished mumbling, young man,” Miss Cartwright said in her clipped tone.
A few people giggled as the boy sank into the seat beside me. He was smaller with the guitar absent from his back, and he seemed much less sure of himself here than when he’d been trying to convince Frost to let him play at Halfway. I reasoned that he must have recently come to the village ready to start school here and spotted the club on the side of the lane just like us. Miss Cartwright cleared her throat, commanding utter silence from the assembled kids.
“Answer me when I call your name,” she instructed. “Let’s make sure we have no dunces who have come to the wrong room.”
The boy looked down at his desk skittishly.
“Thomas Asher,” Miss Cartwright said.
The boy suddenly looked up again, eyes widening. “Oh, um. Yes, Miss,” he replied, “I mean, here, Miss.”
Miss Cartwright gave him her best glare, but said nothing more on the matter. She began to move across the room as she called out names, studying every face in the rows before her.
It’s Tommy actually, a voice suddenly said in my head. Only my nanna calls me Thomas.
I took a deep breath, pushing my mind towards his. Did I give you permission to speak in my head? I asked him.
Although I was tuning out of the room to speak with him, I could still see the outline of his face as he smiled at me; I was caught somewhere partway between reality and full psychic concentration.
Sorry, Tommy answered, but I certainly wasn’t going to whisper out loud with her staring at me. Scary woman, that one.
I tried my best not to giggle. You have no idea, I answered. She’s been teaching me for six years.
Not cool, Tommy replied.
A book suddenly slammed down on my desk. I leapt in my seat, my old, wooden chair rattling as I looked up into the thunderous face of my teacher. “Josephine Fontaine,” she said, her teeth gritted. “Are we in such a state of distraction that we can’t answer our own name on the register nowadays?”
I gave Tommy a withering glare, watching him bite his lip to hold back a laugh.
“Sorry, Miss,” I answered. “But you do know I’m here. I mean, it’s not as though we’re strangers.” I regretted adding the bit after the apology immediately.
“Oh no, we know each other very well,” she answered primly. “I suspect you’re going to be repeating this class until we’re both white-haired and wrinkled.”




About the author: 
Born in South Wales to Raymond and Jennifer Finn, Kimberley Charlotte Elisabeth Finn (known to readers as K.C., otherwise it’d be too much of a mouthful) was one of those corny little kids who always wanted to be a writer. She was also incredibly stubborn, and so has finally achieved that dream in 2013 with the release of her first three novellas in the four-part Caecilius Rex saga, the time travel adventure The Secret Star and her new urban fantasy epic The Book Of Shade. 

As a sufferer with the medical condition M.E./C.F.S., Kim works part time as a private tutor and a teacher of creative writing, devoting the remainder of her time to writing novels and studying for an MA in Education and Linguistics. 

Website ** Blog ** GoodReads ** Facebook ** Twitter ** Instagram

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Love, loyalty . . . guilt. - Destined to Meet by Jourdyn Kelly

Cover Reveal
Release Date: November 8th, 2014

Description:

With the support of her faithful Hunters, Anala travels home for the first time in centuries. After six hundred years of living, what could possibly be out there that she hasn’t seen? What she finds will shock even her.

We met Anala and her eclectic group of Hunters in Destined to Kill. We experienced their pain in Destined to Love. In Destined to Meet, Anala will face her past, present and future all at once. Will she survive the journey? Will her Hunters? And, what will Anala choose to do when she finds out the Society of Hunters and her parents’ legacy are in jeopardy?

This is the final book in the Destined Series. Follow Anala and her Hunters in their final quest to see how it all ends.

EXCERPT


As I pace around the mediation room, I'm totally aware of the irony that the room that is used to soothe feels like a cage to me.

"Baby, you need to calm down," Sam soothes. "C'mere." He holds out his arms, and I immediately fall into them, welcoming the strength.

"I know I'm being stupid," I begin.

"Not stupid," he assures me. "She knows perfectly well that we're together. If anyone is being foolish, it's her."

"Hmm," is my noncommittal answer. Truth is, I feel foolish. I feel like a damned teenager and not a six-hundred plus year-old vampire that has been through so much in the past centuries. I've lived through losing my parents, plagues, wars . . . and the one thing that brings me to the brink of losing myself is jealousy.

Actually, it's me.

Sam's voice in my head startles me out of my reverie.

"What?"

"Jealousy isn't what's causing you to feel out of control. It's me," he states quietly. When I gaze into his eyes, I see the different emotions he's struggling with. Love, loyalty . . . guilt. Guilt?

I place my palms on his face, and stroke my thumbs sweetly on his cheeks. "Why do you feel guilty, baby?"

"I'm not sure." He tries to turn away, but I hold him closer and wait patiently for him to continue. "Your humanity is in jeopardy because of me."

"That's not true."

"Sure it is. Before me, you had control. You had . . . "

"Nothing," I finish for him. "I was ready to die, Sam. This life, this never-ending life had become too . . . lonely. I've watched people die all around me. I never let anyone close enough to feel anything because I couldn't handle it anymore. That is what was making me lose my humanity, baby."

I reach up and kiss him lightly on the lips.

"We'll work on this jealousy thing. Actually, we need to work on the amazing connection thing that's going on. It's wreaking havoc on my senses."

Sam chuckles lightly. "Mine, too. Luckily for me I'm not dealing with someone else trying to get with you since . . . ," his voice trails off, and I know he was thinking of Zac. He pulls me into a hug, holding on tight until we were interrupted by the others pushing their way into the room.

"Okay, we got the . . . are we bothering you?" Jenna comments sarcastically when Sam and I break apart abruptly.

"Where is Tania?" I ask, ignoring her question.

"We sedated her," Amanda answers tentatively. "And kinda sorta tied her to the bed."

Laughter kinda sorta bursts out of me at that visual. "Well, at least we don't have to worry about her getting away and telling the Priestess that I'm a vampire," I say. "Let's sit." I gesture to the pillows that litter the floor, and try to find the words to explain to them what my dilemma is.

"The feelings are too strong for you, aren't they?" Emily asks, surprising me by her perception.

"Yes."

"Wait, what does that mean?" Jenna asks, leaning back on her hands and crossing her ankles in front of her.

"It means that if I try to compel Tania, I may kill her," I answer factually.

"Oh my God, seriously?" Amanda leans closer to me, taking my hand in hers. "How? I mean, would you be telling her to kill herself?"

"No! You know me better than that, Amanda."

"If I may?" Eric addresses the room, and continues when I nod. "When you compel someone, you're using the power of your mind to control theirs, correct?"

"Mmhmm."

"With Ana's feelings towards Tania, she could override her brain, possibly, um . . . "

"Frying it?" Jenna suggests with a smirk.

"Essentially," I admit.




About the author:
Currently living in the Houston area, Jourdyn spends her time writing, designing websites and caring for what she equates as a zoo with 3 dogs, 2 cats, a bearded dragon, 2 frogs and 2 turtles and an axolotl. In the recent years, she has changed her lifestyle to include working out and eating right. She now competes in triathlons, will run her second half-marathon in early 2015, and loves Muay Thai kickboxing, boxing and Krav Maga.

Jourdyn loves bringing her characters out for everyone to meet. Her goal is to keep writing in many different genres, as she feels there shouldn't be anything limiting writers.


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Thursday, October 23, 2014

They’ve met the same killer, and he has one hell of a story to tell - Stormfront (Undertow #2) by K.R. Conway

Description:

Not long ago Eila Walker’s choices were limited: death by a bullet to the head, or at the hands of her beloved bodyguard, Raef. Now, five weeks after Raef triggered her power and she nearly leveled a historic mansion, Eila is dealing with the fall-out of her decisions. While she doesn’t remember dying in the arms of the soul thief who loves her, she knows that Raef remembers everything about the night he nearly killed her.

Now on the mend and attempting to keep one step ahead of the FBI, Eila and her team of misfits are desperate for a bit of normal. Eila is trying to navigate high school, while her BFF Ana is cautiously hanging with past-boyfriend and soul thief, Kian. Shape-shifter, MJ, is trying not to piss off his mother, while Raef is coping with his fears that Eila will never be safe.

But just as “normal” seems within their grasp, a powerfully built newcomer arrives. Raef knows the scarred man as a Blacklist Dealer – a soul thief, who peddles the names of humans who deserve to die. Eila, however, knows him as the protective hunter from the woods, who she nicknames Thor. Before long, Raef and Eila realize they’ve met the same killer, and he has one hell of a story to tell the five friends . . . if Raef doesn’t murder him first.

Luckless Eila is unknowingly the last of her kind: Rare. Gifted. Breakable. Stunning Raef is her kind's historic enemy: Soulless. Lethal. Lost. A legendary death 160 years before would set their lives to collide, forcing a beautiful killer to become a savior, a simple wallflower to become a warrior, and ruthless destiny to become a death sentence.

SUMMARY:
Seventeen-year-old Eila Walker’s new home has defied the brutal Atlantic for over 160 years. Abandoned since her 4th great grandmother Elizabeth vanished, the town legend declares that she drowned . . . or was struck by lightning.

Unbeknownst to the town and Eila, however, is that someone does know what really happened to Elizabeth, and he has returned, determined to protect the last surviving Walker from a history of violence. 

But what starts out as a quest for redemption, evolves into something more and soon young guardian, Raef, is forced to reveal the truth to Eila. As hidden secrets about their warring 
families come to light, Eila begins to realize that she may be their best shot at survival, even if it means following in her grandmother’s fearless footsteps to save her killer bodyguard. 

About the author:
I have been a journalist for 15 years and serve on the Board of Directors for the Cape Cod Writers Center. I also drive a 16-ton school bus because I am ENTIRELY NUTS.

In addition to working jobs that should come with a warning label , I hold a BA in Psychos (Forensic Psych), torment the tourists about Jaws, and occasionally jump from the Town Neck bridge in an attempt to reclaim my youth.

I live on Cape Cod with two smallish humans who apparently are my kids, my fishing-obsessed husband, two canines (adept at both flatulence and snoring), and a cage-defiant lovebird that sleeps in a miniature tent. Nope - that's not a type-o. The bird is quite the indoor camper.

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The afterlife could become monotonous - Bring Me to Life (Time Walkers #1) by Emma Weylin

Published: September 29th, 2014
Cover Artist: Valerie Tibbs

Description:

Being dead sucks, or so Vincent Asher believes. He’s spent the last two hundred years of his death battling vampires because his boss won’t let him kill demons. Known as a force called the Wraith, Vincent has become bored with preventing the apocalypse. When he hopes his boss will give him a more exciting assignment, he gets the shock of his afterlife. He must protect the woman who killed him.

Bryna Wildrose accidently killed the only man she ever loved. In a self-imposed death sentence, she’s spent the last ten years of her life trying to get herself killed. She never meant to kill Vincent, and the guilt is eating her alive. A vampire gives her a dire warning. The Wraith is coming for her. She can run, or she can let death take her.

Given no choice, Vincent goes back in time to find the one woman he loved more than life itself, but when he expected to torment her for causing his death, he learns nothing is what he believed it to be. Real love never dies, but Vincent’s power might not be enough to keep Bryna alive.

GUEST POST
Paranormal Romance Plots—How to keep it fresh and Original 

I like to create new worlds. It’s the first step in keeping any genre fresh and original. Backstory, history, and the tiniest details are key ingredients. The paranormal genre is full of witches, ghosts, vampires, shape-shifters, and the like. While these creatures and people do have a real-world lore, it’s when a writer creates their own mythology that really keeps this genre so interesting. For Bring Me to Life I brought together vampires, time travel, secret organizations and true love. Mixing concepts up and putting them with ideas that at first glance don’t seem to fit can make an amazing story. 

Characterization is the other major factor. We all have our favorite heroine and hero types, but what about mixing them up? What if you have a “bad boy” who is a true gentlemen? Or a heroine who can kick butt, but also loves to bake muffins? Or a werewolf who enjoys making homemade jelly? Characters, like plot lines can make the story flat and clichéd. 

Say a writer decides to mate a pixie who hates flowers, but loves airplane mechanics with a savage cougar shape-shifter who also owns a plot of property to help protect a dwindling chipmunk population. It’s not that difficult to see the only possible villain could be an Enchantress who needs the essence of pixie and chipmunk to mix a batch of evil goo to help her take over the world. Maybe it doesn’t need to be so dramatic, or have to include the dichotomy of good and evil, but matching up things that “don’t work” and recreating them until they do work is not only fun, but helps to keep the genre alive. 

The second way would be to start from scratch and build the world from the ground up. This aspect of world building is general attributed more to Fantasy than Paranormal, but this is where writers can pull from alternate reality type stories. What would the world be like if Christianity hadn’t become the dominate religion? What if it was still common for humans to know gnomes and keplies still existed? How would people without magic be viewed? How would non-believers be treated? What would happen if a man fell in love with a woman who refused to believe in magic? 

There is an endless supply of mythology to pull from to create interesting stories and the imagination is limitless. Love can be added to any story to give it more meaning. Standing tropes on their heads and reinventing them help to keep this genre fun to write and fun to read.

EXCERPT



Prologue

Death sucked. Sure, the women were hot and the ability to move back and forth through time to fend off the apocalypse was entertaining, but even the afterlife could become monotonous. Fast times and even faster women had become his stint in existence. True, such things as illness and pesky bullets couldn’t kill him any longer, but Wraith was getting bored. At some point in the last two hundred years he decided his fate had been Hell instead of Time Walker limbo; he’d just been too naïve to know it at the time of his death. Actually, it was probably about the time he’d earned his moniker instead of going by his Earthly name.

He ducked down when a vampire swung at him with a two-by-four. He popped up, caught the board on its second swing, cracked it over his knee, and then stabbed the undead with the sharp end. Why should he have to endure Hell by his lonesome? The vampire burst into a smoky cloud of ash which fell to the alley before it was gently blown away.

Wraith looked at his watch.

New York City, 1939. He pulled his crumpled list out of his pocket and checked where he was supposed to go next. New Orleans, 2085. Great. There was nothing worse than having to go to the largest vampire nest in North America, but they were still boring. He perked up a little. Maybe it wasn’t a vampire this time and he’d get another crack at a demon. Those were always so much more interesting to kill when Felix decided to let him, which wasn’t very often.

He checked his list again and watched as all his assignments vanished one by one.

Shit.

What the hell had he done now to get in trouble? He’d been good for the last decade—well, there had been that one night in a Hestia temple with two virgins, but it hadn’t been his fault. They’d asked him to stay. Besides, that was five years ago. Surely he wasn’t getting into trouble for that.

Headquarters appeared on the page in big glowing letters. He walked down the alley and visualized headquarters, and the imagery around him blurred from dank, garbage-ridden streets to bright white halls lined with gold trim.

Yep.

He was in Hell all right.

He walked down the hall with its never-changing view until a large door out of nowhere swung open.

“Get your ass in here!” Felix bellowed.

“I’m here.”

“You’re late,” he snapped.

Wraith arched a brow at him, but didn’t say anything. Felix was like a bazillion years older than he and could send his ass back to the Bronze Age to deal with babes who didn’t know how to bathe or shave. “Yeah, so sue me. What did I do this time?”

“We found out the point in time that causes the apocalypse. It’s your job to go stop it.”

Wraith sighed. Same old, same old. When was he going to get an exciting assignment? He stuck out his hand for the transparent cellophane-like material Felix handed to him and looked down at the forming image. Two hundred years of annoying monotony drained away as raw rage boiled in his system. “No. I’m not doing the job.”

Felix rolled his eyes. “You’re not supposed to kill her, dumbass. You’re supposed to protect her.”

Wraith glared at his asshole superior. “Like hell I am. Find someone else, or I guess it’s The Apocalypse Meets the Twenty-third Century.”

“It’s this or judgment.”

Wraith started to curse. “You’re kidding me? I have to save that bitch or you’re going to throw my ass in Hell?”

“Yeah, ain’t the afterlife a bitch?” Felix said without sympathy. “Get going. I need you there a day before the main attraction.”

Wraith pulled out his assignment sheet and looked at the time. It was the day before what should have been his twenty-eighth birthday. He’d never had an assignment so close to his death date before. That wasn’t affecting him nearly as much as having to save the life of the woman who killed him.





About the author: 
Emma Weylin fell in love with the written word as a child. She loves to create her own worlds full of magic and wonder. One of her favorite things is populating those worlds with interesting and true-to-life characters who experience everything from epic love and heartrending battles to seriously silly or embarrassing “duh” moments. She believes love can and does conquer all things. When she’s not writing, she enjoys her family and has a copious yarn addiction.


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"I’ll be watching you.” - Straight from the Heart (Straight from the Heart #1) by Breigh Forstner

Cover Artist: Madelene Martin 

Description: 

This is a story about a girl discovering and experiencing life for the first time.

Bryn Schaefler grew up rich. Her parents expected the best out of her, picked her boyfriend for her, and groomed her to be the next trophy wife fresh out of High School.

But when they discover she wants to pursue music instead of following in her mothers footsteps, they wanted to hear nothing about it.

That was when Bryn left for good.

By chance, she auditioned for main stream rock band Everlasting. Never in a million years did she think she would make it.

Cale Pelton knew it was his fault for the band scrambling around to find a new guitarist. Once he saw Bryn audition, he knew he had to have her. Not just in the band, but in his mind, body and soul.

GUEST POST
The good and bad of the romance genre

There are lots of goods and bads of the romance genre today, especially different trends that are emerging. I’ll start with the bad first! One thing I’ve noticed when reading some romance books is that the female characters are strong. Where’s the females that they don’t let a guy bring them down or they do what they want? Independant is what I’m trying to say. 

But the good traits that I’ve seen in the genre is I like happy endings. Majority of the books I have read usually have a happy ending, or at least an ending and not a cliffhanger (which there is one in Straight from the Heart.) I like the feeling that the main characters will either have a happily ever after or are on the track to a happy ever after. 

One trend I’ve noticed also while reviewing ARC’s and reading books is there are a lot of serial novels and BDSM. For example like The Arrangement by H.M Ward. There have been at least 16 or 17 books in the series and no end! But a lot of authors have been doing 4 or 5 small novels to tell their story. I’ve also seen a lot more dominant men in books but that’s not a bad thing!

EXCERPT




After making small talk for the next couple of minutes, Tracy brought out heaping plates of lasagna and a foot long piece of garlic bread smothered in butter. I was about to gain 5 pounds from this meal, and today I didn’t care. 

“Do you guys eat like this on tour?” I asked him, watching him wipe his hands on a napkin. 

“Hell no. It’s usually fast food or a local diner by the venue. I mean sometimes we’ll stock up on easy sandwich stuff. But you can never tell because we thrash around the stage for an hour during our set, so it comes off pretty quick.” Cale explained. “Are you afraid you’re going to gain weight or something?”

“Obviously, I’m a girl; can you handle living with one for months on end in a bus?” I asked him. He got a look in his eye as if it was a challenge. I could get used to seeing that look every day.

“I lived with my mom for 22 years of my life, and 3 sisters. I’ve seen it all. Question is, can you handle all of us?” He questioned me, and I already knew the answer. But whether he meant that as living with them in closed quarters, or something entirely different, I didn’t care. 

“So you wanting me in your band isn’t just for the sex?” I enquired, catching myself off guard because normally the word “sex” would never come out of my mouth, let alone anything remotely close to that. Cale shifted in his seat and lowered his head for a minute, then met my gaze.

“You’re 18 and talking about sex already? Don’t get me wrong, that is completely hot but believe me B, tours aren’t for the faint of heart. You’ll see the stereotypical sex, drugs, and rock n’ roll. Shit will go down unexpectedly and it will change you, for good or ill.” Then he took one last bite of his lasagna. “And, I’m a guy.”

I threw my head back and laughed sarcastically. “Obviously.” 

Cale brought his face closer to me and whispered “Keep up your humor and everyone’s going to find out how I screwed my new lead guitarist so fast and so hard she couldn’t walk straight.” My mouth formed an O shape, and I sat back as straight as a stick. “I have needs, you’ll find out. If I want to fuck, I’ll gladly take a groupie backstage, with pleasure. This is eye opening shit B. You’ll shed that 18 year old shy vulnerable skin the first night on tour.” 





About the author:

Breigh Forstner currently resides in her home town in south east Michigan with her two daughters. While she works full-time during the week, at night she spends time with her kids and writes until her fingers can’t type anymore. Her goal is to make it onto a best sellers list at some point in her career, and writes any chance she can get. She is a lover of all types of music and is a sucker for rock bands and tattooed bad boys.


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