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Thursday, April 24, 2014

CoverReveal: Loki #MM #SciFi



Feast your eyes! I'm super excited to reveal the cover for Loki, coming soon from SirenBookstrand. Harris Channing is the awesome cover artist. I don't have the release date yet, but you'll know it as soon as I do. Mean while here is another little snippet to whet your appetite.


Loki



Sawyer got in the backseat. The soldiers shoved one-zero-seven in next to him.

Instead of shutting the door, one of the men stooped down to speak to Sawyer.

“I’ll keep my weapon trained on him, sir.”

Sawyer glanced at one-zero-seven. His eyes were slits and his head was pressed back against the seat. “That won’t be necessary. I think I can handle a drugged man,” Sawyer said drily.

“Yes, sir.” The soldiers climbed in upfront, and Sawyer reached over to buckle the hybrid’s seat belt. One-zero-seven was wearing gray sweats that were too small for his lean, muscular physique. Despite his rough treatment, one-zero-seven looked to be in excellent shape. Good genes? Sawyer smiled to himself.
As the van pulled out of the garage, Sawyer glanced out the window and saw Shepard watching them. Crazy bastard. Does he enjoy abusing all his lab rats, or is this one his special target? Well, it didn’t matter. Sawyer would show one-zero-seven that all humans were not alike.



Happy Reading!


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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Is It Summer Yet? #BlogHop @queertownabbey



Get a jump on the season with Queer Town Abbey and dozens of your favorite authors for the Is It Summer Yet? Blog Hop.

Grand Prizes for this blog hop include an iPod shuffle, Queer as Folk Box, Music from the ShowTime original series Seasons 3, 4, & 5 donated by Tommy Boy Entertainment, and more. 


To enter the fabulous Grand Prize Giveaway you need to go to the blog hop page http://queertownabbey.com/is-it-summer-yet-blog-hop/ and leave a comment (Share your best summer memory)


Leave a comment here and you might win an ebook of your choice from my backlist.


I have some great summer memories, of my own. It's really hard to choose one, but I decided to share our trip to Fort Worth Texas in June of 2012. That was a memorable time because it was all about family, travel, and a wedding in the Arlington area.




We checked out the food, shopping, and museums at Sundance Square, the bustling cultural district in downtown Fort Worth. And we toured Bass Hall, the permanent home to the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, Texas Ballet Theater, Fort Worth Opera, and the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition and Cliburn Concerts.






The highlight of the trip, aside from the wedding of course, was a tour of the AT&T Stadium, the home of the Dallas Cowboys. It's a one of a kind experience, unlike any other stadium I've seen.




They say a picture is worth a thousand words, I hope you enjoyed mine. 




a Rafflecopter giveaway



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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Shadows of Damascus #BookTour @LilasTaha #GoddessFish



Today I'm hosting the Shadows of Damascus Book Tour. Author Lilas Taha has a fascinating post for you. Enjoy! And don't forget to enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway after you read her excerpt. Lilas will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes& Noble GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour.
Follow the tour for more chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here: 


****

How I handled the research for the book

Since my book was inspired by current events unfolding in Syria, I followed the news hour by hour. I subscribe to a number of Middle Eastern and European news channels, which provided me a much broader perspective and coverage than what the American network channels broadcast.


I still had family in Syria— on my mother’s side, and I talked to them daily, affirming their safety and well-being as much as I could, despite the horrendous conditions and the quick deterioration of the political situation. Even though my heroine is a fictional character, I used the turmoil I experienced listening to relatives to drive me through her emotions and thoughts. Parts of the book discuss life in Damascus before the uprising and the civil war, and lots of those descriptions touch on my memories when I used to spend summers there with my family.


As for the Iraq veteran emotional discovery, I relied on a couple of friends who experienced the war as American soldiers, and allowed me to dig deeper through their eyes, even though we didn’t agree on all angles. I invented the PTSD trauma. None of my friends suffered from it, but I did the research and followed many leads to make it credible.


As for the domestic abuse part in the story, I had plenty of knowledge in the field. My work at a non-profit organization that helps domestic abuse victims provided me with inside information on the workings of an abuser’s mind, and the struggles a survivor goes through to stay alive. I worked with far too many women who suffered physical and emotional abuse at the hands of the people who were supposed to love them. And I’ve seen the effect it took on their children, survivors of a different type of war.





BLURB:

Bullet wounds, torture and oppression aren’t the only things that keep a man—or a woman—from being whole.


Debt. Honor. Pain. Solitude. These are things wounded war veteran Adam Wegener knows all about. Love—now, that he is not good at. Not when love equals a closed fist, burns, and suicide attempts. But Adam is one who keeps his word. He owes the man who saved his life in Iraq. And he doesn’t question the measure of the debt, even when it is in the form of an emotionally distant, beautiful woman.


Yasmeen agreed to become the wife of an American veteran so she could flee persecution in war-torn Syria. She counted on being in the United States for a short stay until she could return home. There was one thing she did not count on: wanting more.


Is it too late for Adam and Yasmeen?


Shadows of Damascus to be released by Soul Mate Publishing mid January, 2014.

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

EXCERPT



PROLOGUE

YASMEEN

Damascus, Syria
Summer 2006



The seductive fragrance of Damascus roses drifted through the open window and flirted with fifteen-year-old Yasmeen’s olfactory senses. The potent flowers in her neighbor’s yard delivered the best awakening. She loved beginnings, especially early, mid-summer mornings like these. Stretching across the bed, her imagination raced with possibilities for the promising day.


Thursday. The day her older brother’s friends visited and stayed well into the evening. Yasmeen ticked off potential visitors in her head, dashing young university students who loved to talk politics with Fadi. Today, she would do her best to discover the name of the quietest member in the group, the thin one with round-rimmed glasses. On her nightstand, the sketch she worked on during the last visit waited for his name, and more details around the eyes.


Peeling off the covers, she tip-toed to the window. Lively noises matched her optimistic mood. Nightingales sang greetings. Clanging dishes and pots resonated from surrounding houses beyond high walls. Mothers called out for their daughters to get breakfast ready. Men’s deep voices describing fresh fruits and vegetables with tempting traditional phrases drifted above hidden alleys. One vendor claimed his cucumbers were small as baby fingers, and likened his ripe apples to a virgin bride’s cheeks. Another boasted his plum peaches shed their covers without enticement, and his shy eggplants hid well in a moonless night.


Yasmeen succumbed to the enlivening chaos spilling in from her bedroom window, her own special and personal opening to the world. Tilting her head back, she exposed her face and neck to the sun, allowing its invigorating rays to paint her cheeks.


Today, her mother told her she would be allowed to take a coffee tray into Fadi’s room once all his friends arrived. What would she wear? She should tell her best friend Zainab to stop by earlier than usual to go through her wardrobe. She could help her decide. Perhaps one of Fadi’s friends would notice her. More than one? Why not?


Draping her arms on the windowsill, she looked at the neighbor’s yard, counting the blooming roses, a ritual she performed each morning since the season started. In the north corner of the largest flowerbed, two violet buds grabbed her attention, their delicate petals about to unfold. Once they came to full bloom, their deep purple color would dominate the landscape.


A knock sounded at her door.


“I am awake.”


Her father walked in. “Good. We have work to do.” He held a hammer in one hand and a couple of boards in the other. “Move aside, Yasmeen.” He approached the window.


She stepped away and pointed at the boards. “What do you need those for?”
Her father closed the windowpanes, locked them, placed one board across the frame, and hammered it in place.


“What are you doing?”


“This window is not to be opened again, child.”


She could not believe her ears. “Why?”


“Neighbors moved out last night.” Her father nailed the second board in place.


“Mukhabarat took over their house.”


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





AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Lilas Taha is a writer at heart, an electrical engineer by training, and an advocate for domestic abuse victims by choice. She was born in Kuwait to a Syrian mother and a Palestinian father, and immigrated to the U.S. as a result of the Gulf war in 1990. She earned a master’s degree in Human Factors Engineering from the University of Wisconsin- Madison. There, Lilas met her beloved husband and true friend, and moved with him to Sugar Land, Texas to establish a family. She is the proud mother of a daughter and a son. Instead of working in an industrial field, she applied herself to the field of social safety, working with victims of domestic violence.


Pursuing her true passion for creative writing, Lilas brings her professional interests, and her Middle Eastern background together in her debut fictional novel, Shadows of Damascus.

Website: www.lilastaha.com
Author Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/LilasTahaAuthor
Blog: http://lilastaha.blogspot.com
Twitter: Follow @LilasTaha https://twitter.com/LilasTaha
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/lilastaha
Email: info@lilastaha.com
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/Lilas_Taha
Facebook page for the book: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Shadows-of-Damascus/577132239031259



Buy Links:

Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/Shadows-Damascus-Lilas-Taha-ebook/dp/B00HUZUG8Y/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1389749986&sr=8-1&keywords=Shadows+of+Damascus
Publisher:  http://www.soulmatepublishing.com/

a Rafflecopter giveaway




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Monday, April 21, 2014

Cover Reveal: Recovery @con_riley #MM #Romance #Rafflecopter



Welcome to the Cover Reveal for Con Riley's new release - Recovery

Visit the other blogs who are hosting the tour, and enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win an ebook copy of Recovery when it's released. 

Blurb: San Diego is a city of second chances for Jamie Carlson. His new career as a photographer is taking off, and with the support of a loving surrogate family, he’s finally putting his party years behind him. The Bailey family helped him solve his drinking problem, but there’s no easy solution to staying sober now that Belle Bailey’s dying. Her last wish is a challenge Jamie can't overcome without help.

Solving problems is Daniel Priest’s specialty. More than twenty years older than Jamie, he’s successful and experienced. He makes his living resolving corporate crises—but his personal life has been far from perfect. Now that his marriage is over, Daniel’s determined to make up for lost time. One night with Jamie isn’t nearly enough for him.


Daniel’s honest offer of help is more than Jamie expects from a one-time hookup. Even so, fulfilling Belle’s last wish is a tall order. Repairing her damaged family as she requests proves difficult when Jamie has to face his own past as well.


Cover Artist: Aaron Anderson
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press



Buy Links: 






Author Bio: Con Riley lives on the wild and rugged Devonshire coast, with her head in the clouds, and her feet in the Atlantic Ocean.

Injury curtailed her enjoyment of outdoor pursuits, so writing fiction now fills her free time instead. Love, loss, and redemption shape her romance stories, and her characters are flawed in ways that makes them live and breathe.
When not people watching, or wrangling her own boy band of teen sons, she spends time staring at the sea from her kitchen window. If you see her, don't disturb her—she's probably thinking up new plots.


Author Links:
Read more: http://conriley.com
Tweet more: https://twitter.com/con_riley
Talk more: con.riley.fiction@gmail.com





Tour Dates: 4/21/14
Tour Stops:



a Rafflecopter giveaway


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Saturday, April 19, 2014

New Release: September Again by Hunter S. Jones #NewAdult #Romance



So excited to have my friend, and fellow author, Hunter S. Jones here today. She's a brilliant writer! Her stories always intrigue, inspire, and keep me turning the pages until the very end. 


SEPTEMBER AGAIN
By
Hunter S. Jones
&
An Anonymous English Poet

According to Cherokee beliefs, opportunity will bless you twice.

September Again, second in the series, September Stories, is the follow up to the hugely popular indie sensation, September Ends. September Again finds Liz Snow Savage leaving England. She follows her daughter Zelda Savage back to America after Zelda’s betrayal of her. More drama ensues as Liz looks for meaning in life while Zelda finds her direction after the tragedy of losing Jack O. Savage, The Poet. Set mainly in Chattanooga, Tennessee, September Again chronicles the rhythm of life's cycles. The ebb and flow of love unravel the mystery of Liz's past. September Again allows a further glimpse into the intricate web of passion and desire which have entangled Liz Snow, Pete Hendrix and Jack O. Savage for years. Will a chance encounter finally reveal the truth?  What act will change the destiny of Liz and Zelda forever? The story of sin, salvation and redemption continues in Book 2 of the September Stories, told through a mosaic of prose with a smattering of poetry.


Magic happens when you least expect it.


PURCHASE LINKS:
Amazon US 
http://amzn.to/1jFNfUF
Amazon UK http://amzn.to/1iPjJJ9



About Hunter S. Jones

The art form I create is much more interesting than anything you will ever know or learn about me. However, since you ask, I am author and entertainment blogger Hunter S. Jones from Atlanta, GA. I have lived in Tennesse and Georgia my entire life, except for one 'Lost Summer' spent in LA. I was always a complex kid. Music is my first and true love although I have no musical skills or abilities.. Throughout my life, I have written something/anything. My first 'gig' was for an indie/alternative rock rag in Nashville, Tennessee. Since then I have published articles on travel, fashion, history and art.



Website: http://huntersjones.com/





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What’s a romance? Rakes in Tartan @Suzdemello #vampire #historical


Turning it over to Suz deMello...


What’s a romance? You may think you know, but…

The standard definition of a romance has been undergoing some change lately, but the definition of romance has always been changing.

Right now, most of us see a romance as a love story between a man and a woman that contains a happy ending, with the heroine going off with Mr. Right. But that wasn’t always the case.

Centuries ago, people married for reasons other than love. They married for money, status or property, and love was something found outside marriage. The most famous romance in our literature, Romeo and Juliet, doesn’t have a happy ending, unless your idea of a good HEA is uniting in heaven.

Other forms of art reflected the belief that love was found outside marriage. Medieval troubadours traveled from castle to castle and sang about the joys of courtly love and romantic love. Art often depicted the clash between marriage and love, such as Tintoretto’s Venus and Mars Surprised by Vulcan (1545).

When did romance change, and why?

Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded (1740) by Samuel Richardson, is often mentioned as the first romance novel. The main point, however, was not that the title character had found love but that her persistent rejections of the so-called hero’s attentions finally got her the prize: marriage.

A less moralistic novel, and one that’s often cited as the best of the genre, is Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice (1813). Despite its somewhat archaic style, it’s one of the most popular novels in English Literature, and for very good reasons. It doesn’t preach the way Pamela does, but instead reflects the real concerns young women had during the Regency: marrying well and marrying for love, or at least respect. Although arranged marriages for the purpose of uniting property or increasing wealth were still a custom in our culture, the desirability of gaining a life with a partner founded on love rather than money was taking hold, and is reflected in the literature of the time.

Each era has produced literature that’s reflective of the time, and romance novels reflect their eras, too. As the love ideal took hold, more romances were written that reflect the joy of love rather than its discouraging end, and cautionary tales took back seat to entertainment.

As time went on, and as mores altered, romances became steadily more erotic. The Flame and the Flower (1972) by Kathleen Woodiwiss is viewed as the first modern romance novel, even though it’s a sequel to Petals on the River. Both are quite racy compared to, say, Austen, and reflect changed attitudes regarding sex before marriage.

Our century

Perhaps the greatest changes have occurred in the last few years. First came chick lit, in which the heroine’s goal is not finding Mr. Right but hooking up with Mr. Right Now. Then writers of digital romance broke the hetero barrier and started writing LGBT romance, which doesn’t require the love story to be between a man and a woman. I’m reliably informed that the biggest consumers of M/M romance aren’t gay guys but hetero females. Go figure!

Rakes in Tartan

Set in 1816, my book reflects the mores and customs of the Regency. Heirs to their clans’ lairdships, Andrew MacReiver and Tor Kilburn must find suitable brides. As did many noblemen of the time, they journeyed to London for the social season after attending Oxford. They hoped to find love, but not a Nordic fairy, a dragon and a vampire assassin.

But, being a book written in the 21st century rather than the 19th, Rakes in Tartan ends happily.

Here’s what some reviewers have said about the previous books in the Highland Vampires series--These are customer reviews from Amazon.
 

5 stars... A new author to add to my list of favorite authors June 20, 2012
By jmaze
Temptation in Tartan is the first book I've read by Suz deMello. It won't be the last. The book is well written, easy to follow and easy to read… I would highly recommend the book and I hope that she plans another book to follow in this one’s stead.


RE: Desire in Tartan:

Five stars..."Engrossing... I was grabbed from the start of the book..."
--S.J. Foulkes (Amazon.com)
Five stars... "Super Read!!!... I enjoyed it from the beginning to the end. I couldn't put it down and read it in one day."
--Becca (Amazon.com)
Five stars..."Such a wonderful read!!!... Such a wonderful book... Love this series!"
--Kimberly Jaksina (Amazon.com)


Rakes in Tartan by Suz deMello  
                                                            
Setting: London 1816
The social season promises both sex and danger for Torquil Kilburn and Andrew
MacReiver, Highland heirs arrived in London to seek brides. The Scotsmen must
negotiate the complicated morés of high society to woo and win an exquisite
debutante and her passionate, unconventional mother while keeping their vampire heritage a secret.

But evil stalks the ballroom at Almack’s, the streets of Piccadilly, the drawing rooms of the ton. Headless bodies have been found drained of their blood, for another vampire haunts the streets of London, murdering noblemen. As he draws ever closer, Tor and Andrew must fight not only for love, but for their lives.

Buy it here: http://www.ellorascave.com/rakes-in-tartan.html


About the author:

Best-selling, award-winning author Suz deMello, a.k.a Sue Swift, has written seventeen romance novels in several subgenres, including erotica, comedy, historical, paranormal, mystery and suspense, plus a number of short stories and non-fiction articles on writing. A freelance editor, she’s worked for Total-E-Bound, Liquid Silver Books and Ai Press, where she is currently Managing Editor. She also takes private clients.

Her books have been favorably reviewed in Publishers Weekly, Kirkus and Booklist, won a contest or two, attained the finals of the RITA and hit several bestseller lists.


A former trial attorney, her passion is world travel. She’s left the US over a dozen times, including lengthy stints working overseas. She’s now writing a vampire tale and planning her next trip.


--Find her books at http://www.suzdemello.com
--For editing services, email her at suzswift@yahoo.com
--Befriend her on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/sueswift,
    and visit her group page at 
https://www.facebook.com/redhotauthorscafe
--She tweets her reading picks @ReadThis4fun and @Suzdemello
--Pinterest:
http://www.pinterest.com/suzdemello/
--Goodreads: http://bit.ly/SuzATGoodreads
--Her current blog is http://www.fearlessfastpacedfiction.com


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Monday, April 14, 2014

April Blog Hop for #Autism Awareness #Giveaway



Autism is a hidden condition; a diagnosis does not involve a physical examination.

This year I'm happy to take part in RJ Scott's April Autism Blog Hop. Each participant was given a fact about autism to post. Mine is above. It's ironic that RJ gave me a fact that is so fitting to my post. I don't have a child with autism, but I know what it's like to have a child with a hidden condition.   

I lived through every parent's worst nightmare. My son died of a drug overdose. Many of you don't know that, because it's still too hard for me to talk about it. The pain, emotional and physical, is unimaginable. I still feel like someone ripped a piece of my heart out.

Jon's addiction started when he was prescribed pain killers after a car accident. For a long time, he was able to hide his growing dependency from everyone. When we realized the truth we tried to get him help but it was too late.

Books, writing, and these two groups helped me survive the worst days of my life.

Now, I'm here to support other parents and children who are going through their own struggles. Please know you're not alone.

Read the other blog posts and enter the giveaways. You can find them here: 

And leave a comment below for a chance to win two ebooks from my backlist—your choice. I’ll announce the winner on April 16th.



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