Year Faves Part II [Drool-Worthy Book Covers]

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The following selection of covers blew my mind. Like seriously BLEW.MY.MIND.

I’m no graphic designer, illustrator, cartoonist or anything close to that. Heck, I don’t even draw straight lines, I barely can draw connected circles AND I failed all my coloring tests in kindergarten. Up to this day I can’t color.

And I’m almost 34 years old.

No joke.

So this list, with no particular order whatsoever, was chosen by me, with no influence by anybody, just because I like the covers. They are pretty, and to me a pretty cover basically sells 90% of the book at first impression.

You may not agree, but to each it’s own. I think all of these covers ROCK TO THE MOON AND BACK.

I must add though, that this list was not easy to put together either, however I did take into consideration a few aspects before picking them:

  • Book to which they belong was released in 2014
  • I not necessarily READ said book, but have purchased it and it’s currently sitting in my TBR pile.

Did I mention they are SPECTACULAR?

Yes?

Well, here they are:

 

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The Mortal Instruments: City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare

Cover Artist: Cliff Nielsen

Cliff Nielsen, mastermind behind all the covers for the Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clare, made this list by default. There hasn’t been one cover I have not loved from him, and I am crossing my fingers so he can also be the mastermind behind the upcoming Dark Artifices, third Shadowhunter series by Clare. One thing is to see these covers in digital, which hold true colors and instantly catch your attention, but another one is to see them live, on the book, (a hardback) and see that not only the true colors remain as beautiful as they look in digital, but the dust jacket also has slight patterns. Pretty cool, I might add. 🙂

 

 

 

My Fave Covers

The Kraken King: Parts 1 to 8 by Meljean Brook

Cover: Berkley Publishing*

Berkley Publishing did Meljean Brook all possible justice. The Kraken King, split in an 8 part serial throughout the Spring turned out to be a fantastic experiment and all eight covers are possibly the most colorful and creative ones I have seen in THE LONGEST TIME. Of course, you have to be a little bit familiar with the entire story, and some have nothing to do with it, but in reality, the whole ‘Steampunk’ movement is well portrayed in these unbelievably beautiful pieces of art making them the icing on top of the fantastic adventure / love story of Zenobia Fox and the Kraken King.

 

 

 

 

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Walk with Me by Cardeno C.

Cover Artist: Paul Richmond

What haven’t I said about this book already to finally convince you this is a GREAT read? Well, the main reason I discovered this book in the first place was because of the cover. Just by looking at it, I KNEW this was another Paul Richmond creation. Pure BEAUTY. And see, I insist that covers sell stories, and this one with no doubt whatsoever was the one story that I knew absolutely NOTHING about, no blurb, nothing about the author, no reviews read, NOTHING. It was the blessed creative mind of Paul Richmond who brought to life this cover that instantly bought my curiosity. The rest is history. And just as a side note, every single person I have shared this book with, loved both the story AND the cover.

 

 

 

 

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Four: A Divergent Collection by Veronica Roth

Cover Artist: Joel Tippie

I must admit that dystopian fantasy is not my reading preference, but there is something in this series that caught my attention right off the bat. And guess what? IT’S FANTASTIC! (have you seen the movie? no? what are you waiting for then?) Now, if you mix a kick ass story with a very clever book cover, you know you will have the greatest of reading experiences. Joel Tippie had already scored with the previous three covers (for Divergent, Insurgent and Allegiant) and once again delivered with the cover of Four.

 

 

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Landline by Rainbow Rowell

Cover Artist: Olga Grlic

Sometimes simple is just the way to go. Something simple, with not a lot of fuzz, couple of colors and voila! You have the book recipe for PERFECTION. Just as with the covers for Fangirl and Eleanor and Park, Olga Grlic delivered a very clever, basic and beautiful cover that says it all; just as Rainbow Rowell delivered to all her fans another knock out story worth a million smiles.

 

 

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Waistcoats & Weaponry by Gail Carriger

Cover: Little, Brown & Company*

Little, Brown & Company scored another favorite of mine, with this gorgeous cover for Gail Carriger’s ‘Finishing School’ series. There is just something about a black and white image on a very colorful background that attracts you instantly. It’s simple, clean, DEFINETELY not too busy, and the thing is, you kind of have an idea about the story just by looking at this cover. Back in Curtsies and Conspiracies I knew NOTHING about this new series, and it was that exact cover that attracted me to buy the book. Three stories later, I am (as since The Parasol Protectorate) an avid fan of Mrs. Carriger and her Steampunk world.

 

 

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Deacon by Kristen Ashley

Cover Artist: Unknown*

 There is always something meaningful behind K.A.’s book covers. They all have to do with a very significant scene, or moment, or phrase or chapter in her books, and believe me, you need to READ and understand these to find the beauty behind it. I did, and never looked back since the first book I read from her, Raid, also from her ‘Unfinished Hero’ series. I wish I could give kudos to the cover artist properly, but, in the meantime I share with all of you how much I LOVE this cover that to the untrained eye is nothing but two leaves, but to me hold a very deep meaning behind an even more mind blowing story.

 

 

 

 

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The Art of Breathing by TJ Klune

Cover Artist: Paul Richmond

And once again, Paul Richmond created a masterpiece to be admired for years to come. If you ask me, I WANT THIS COVER IN A 60 X 60 portrait for my bedroom wall.

Is that too big?

Nah!

Any of Paul Richmond’s creations would never be too big to admire. I wish there was some sort of edict in his native Columbus to cover all front house entrances with one of his paintings. Seriously beautiful stuff he creates, trust me. And of course, TJ Klune knocked it out of the ballpark AGAIN, with a superb storytelling that deserved no less than this colossally beautiful cover to go with it. Match made in book heaven.

 

 

 

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Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

Cover Artist: Unknown*

I think you can pretty much agree with me, that Tahereh Mafi is by far one of THE most fashionable authors ever. I can’t think of another author alive who has her sense of fashion / hip / chic / pop coolness who could rock stripes, plaid, and circles in the same outfit and still look impeccable. Just as her unquestionable excellent taste in clothing, her covers for the entire ‘Shatter Me’ series rocked a lot of people’s socks off. Her final installment in the trilogy, ‘Ignite Me’ is possibly my favorite of all. As I have mentioned, dystopian is still new to me, but I met Tahereh last year at the L.A. Times Festival of Books and fell under the spell. She is simply PHENOMENAL, and these stories deserved such beautiful artwork like the ones re -designed for them. Totally freakin’ cool.

 

 

 

*Covers marked as ‘unknown’ either I have not been able to identify the artist, or have been created by the publishing company / self published author not crediting an artist in particular. If you know who did them, feel free to comment and help me give them credit for such phenomenal work 🙂

The Daughter of the Sea and the Sky by David Litwack [BookBlitz

 

Daughter eBook Cover

 

 

Speculative Literary Fiction

Date Published: May 19, 2014

   After centuries of religiously motivated war, the world has been split in two. Now the Blessed Lands are ruled by pure faith, while in the Republic, reason is the guiding light-two different realms, kept apart and at peace by a treaty and an ocean.

 

Children of the Republic, Helena and Jason were inseparable in their youth, until fate sent them down different paths. Grief and duty sidetracked Helena’s plans, and Jason came to detest the hollowness of his ambitions.

These two damaged souls are reunited when a tiny boat from the Blessed Lands crashes onto the rocks near Helena’s home after an impossible journey across the forbidden ocean. On board is a single passenger, a nine-year-old girl named Kailani, who calls herself The Daughter of the Sea and the Sky. A new and perilous purpose binds Jason and Helena together again, as they vow to protect the lost innocent from the wrath of the authorities, no matter the risk to their future and freedom.

But is the mysterious child simply a troubled little girl longing to return home? Or is she a powerful prophet sent to unravel the fabric of a godless Republic, as the outlaw leader of an illegal religious sect would have them believe? Whatever the answer, it will change them all forever… and perhaps their world as well.

 

 EXCERPT

 

THE GIRL FROM THE BLESSED LANDS

 

Jason offered his bottle, but the girl shied away. Helena cradled the child’s head and tilted her chin while he trickled a few drops into her mouth.

The girl licked her cracked lips and opened for more. After she’d drunk her fill, she turned to Helena. Her eyes grabbed and held. “The dream,” she said. “It’s true. I can see it in your eyes.”

Helena felt a sudden urge to distract the girl, to disrupt that penetrating gaze. “Who are you?”

The girl ignored the question, instead resting her hand on Jason’s forearm.

His muscles twitched as if he were unsure whether to linger or jerk away.

“Your arm is hot,” she said.

“That’s because I’ve been running.”

The girl’s ocean-blue eyes opened wider. “From what?”

He withdrew his arm and flexed his fingers. “Are you from the Blessed Lands?”

The girl nodded.

“Why would you make such a dangerous voyage alone in such a small boat?”

“I was in no danger,” she said.

He waved a hand at the flotsam, still surging in the tide. “But your boat’s destroyed, and it took us to save you.”

“Yes, I suppose.” She looked back out to sea as if expecting to find her boat still afloat. “Then I thank Lord Kanakunai for sparing me and delivering me to kind people who would help.”

“But who are you?” Helena said more insistently.

The girl motioned for more to drink, this time grasping the bottle with both hands and emptying it. When she finished, she sat up and lifted her chin like royalty. “I am Kailani, the daughter of the sea and the sky.”

 

BOOK TRAILER

 

AUTHOR BIO

The urge to write first struck when working on a newsletter at a youth encampment in the woods of northern Maine. It may have been the night when lightning flashed at sunset followed by northern lights rippling after dark. Or maybe it was the newsletter’s editor, a girl with eyes the color of the ocean. But he was inspired to write about the blurry line between reality and the fantastic .
Using two fingers and lots of white-out, he religiously typed five pages a day throughout college and well into his twenties. Then life intervened. He paused to raise two sons and pursue a career, in the process becoming a well-known entrepreneur in the software Dave Portrait Hi Resindustry, founding several successful companies. When he found time again to daydream, the urge to write returned.

 

He’s published three novels so far in this new stage of his life: There Comes a Prophet, Along the Watchtower, and the recently released The Daughter of the Sea and the Sky.
David and his wife split their time between Cape Cod, Florida and anywhere else that catches their fancy. He no longer limits himself to five pages a day and is thankful every keystroke for the invention of the word processor.

 

AUTHOR LINKS

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The Burden of Souls by Andy Monk [BookBlitz]

 

the Burden of Souls cover

 

 

Sci-Fi / Dark Fantasy

Date Published:September 2014

SciFi

Small Town, Dark Heart…

A long way from anywhere, on a road going nowhere, lays a small, unremarkable town. It seems a peaceable, prosperous little place, on the surface at least.

Away from prying eyes however, in the shadows and the forgotten corners, there is a web being weaved through the lives of its inhabitants by the town’s urbane and mysterious Mayor. A man prepared to make a deal for your heart’s desire and, maybe, for your very soul…

Welcome to Hawker’s Drift, a town where nothing is quite as it seems…

 

 Excerpt

Only three people trudged behind the coffin-laden wagon.

He assumed the woman in the black dress was the widow. Her face was veiled, but her back was straight and she moved as freely as the cloying mud allowed; a young widow. A small bookish man peering through rain-smeared spectacles laboured next to her, struggling to hold an umbrella over them both in the wind. Behind came a cadaverous looking old bird clutching a dog-eared bible to his chest. A preacher.

Amos pulled his horse to the side of the road; if that wasn’t too generous a description for two mud-choked ruts. It meandered towards a town that occupied a low slung hill; the only feature on the vast tableland of grass. He took off his hat and let the rain sting his face as the little procession passed. The widow glanced up at him hesitantly, before nodding an acknowledgement. From behind the shadows of her veil he got the impression of an attractive woman with no intention of crying. There was sadness, not unexpectedly, coming off of her, but interspersed with those dull grey waves came prickly spikes of fear too.

The preacher flicked a glance in his direction as well, but he quickly dropped his eyes and scurried along, his body bent forward against the driving rain. He looked terribly unhappy with his lot. The preacher was suffering, a physical pain beneath a terrible craving.

The third man, his jacket flapping in the breeze, ignored him, and Amos tried to do the same to the hot, fetid desire that was rolling off of him like a burning fever.

Whoever was being buried had not warranted much in the way of gestures from the rest of the town. What did you have to do to end up with only two mourners and a sour-faced preacher at your funeral?

As the wagon bearing the coffin rattled on towards the cemetery, signified by a small forest of crosses poking above the surrounding long grass, he let the rain wash the scent of their souls from the air before he replaced his hat and pushed his weary horse on towards the town.

Out here, where seas of grass washed towards too far away horizons and the earth squatted beneath colossal skies, it amounted to civilization.

He slipped his coat back and made sure his gun was free to draw.

Civilization, he had found, tended to suck.

 

Author Bio &  Links

Andy Monk lives in London with his partner and their goldfish.

After a high-flying academic career and glittering success in professional sport, followed by a jet-set lifestyle of wild parties, exotic holidays and beautiful women, he settled down to write internationally acclaimed best-selling novels.andy monk

Andy Monk has a tendency to exaggerate and has an occasionally tenuous grip on reality.

He does, however, have a goldfish.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author Links

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A Guitar with Too Many Strings [BookBlitz + Giveaway]

BBT A Guitar With Too Many Strings Tour Banner copy

 

MEDIA KIT Book Cover

 

A Guitar With Too Many Strings

by John Mellor

 

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 Blurb

“Madness dances with brilliance” – a wild rock singer, a lonely white dolphin and other unworldly misfits emerge from their strange stories to challenge a young boy as to why. A gaunt tree leans wearily over them, like a guitar with too many strings. And the Angel leans on her gate, watching. – “Never seen anything quite like this”; “A unique & wonderful manuscript”.

 

– see goodreads.com/book/show/21855007-a-guitar-with-too-many-strings for 57 reviews and ratings

 

“This is not a normal book with a normal story…”

 

It is the story of a rock singer and the unearthly harmonies plucked from a strange 13-string guitar; and of a bumptious honeybee encountering a strange little man on a planet that isn’t there; and a tired, cynical old philosopher conducting a strange debate with a stone in the woods.

 

It is the story of a shipwrecked sailor, whose pet egg hatches into a strange seagull; and a worn-out, unworldly old lady dying in a strange land where no-one dreams; and a sad, downtrodden gardener tending a Wise Woman’s strange, disquieting weed.

 

It is the story of a lonely white dolphin, and a tree – curiously shaped like a guitar with too many strings.

 

And of a young boy who discovers – with a little help from an Angel – The Seven Gifts – that came to Earth

 

“A most unusual and beautiful story”

 

“This is a book to make you think”

 

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ExcerptMEDIA KIT excerpt and blog graphic

 

 

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Links

 

 

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The Wizard’s Gift by Michael Waller [BookBlitz]

The Wizards Gift Cover

Fantasy

Date Published: June 30, 2012

  Blurb

The last of an ancient group of wizards leaves a gift to the newly arrived race of men. It is revered and cared for by a line of priests until it is stolen, and the high priest and his sovereign murdered by a king who believes himself destined to be a great wizard. But from ancient writings the high priest had discovered that the gift is not benevolent as was thought. This forces the son of the high priest, unexpectedly elevated to his father’s position, and the young prince who is equally suddenly king, into a race to find the gift before it can be used as that may cause the destruction of the world. Accompanied by the retired captain of the palace guard they hope to speed their journey by crossing the Wasteland, a seeming desert, which is fabled to be populated by monsters, and from which no visitor has ever returned. In the course of their adventures they are hunted by dog faced men and captured by slavers, but the young prince truly becomes a king, and the priest discovers that he has a destiny that goes beyond the bounds of his world.

 Excerpt

 

Hiding behind the trees they waited for the approach of the dogfaced men. The defile was cut deeply into the hillside and was flanked by rocky crags that rose almost vertically to the top of the hill. Their pursuers would have no alternative but to follow them up the defile as the climb on either side of it would be almost impossible in the fury of the thunderstorm.

Carantor, crouching behind a tree was the nearest to the gap through which the dogfaced men would have to come in single file. His plan was to allow a small number of them through before he broke from cover to face the remainder as they tried to climb through the gap. Caran Tuith and Bataan stood a few yards back their swords drawn and ready to deal with those first few in the tight confines of the gully. In the flashes of lightning they could see down the rocky stairway with its steep sides, all the way to the bottom, and they were sure that in their present position they could not be caught unawares. Water ran over the slippery fragments of rock and between their feet before cascading over the tangle of exposed tree roots, much of it falling onto Carantor’s back. Oblivious to the cold water he waited, anxious and alert, for the arrival of the creatures that had pursued them for three days. He knew that there was no possibility of hearing their approach amid the noise of the storm, and although the lightning when it came illuminated the defile and its approach, the heavy rain and the pitch darkness between the flashes could hide their arrival until the very last moment.

All three strained their eyes and ears. Their fingers clenched and unclenched around the hilts of their swords. The rain had soaked them to the skin and though Caran Tuith and Bataan had been oblivious to how wet and cold they were during their flight, now, standing still and quiet, they began to shiver and feel the numbness growing in their toes.

Bataan thought that he saw something move to the right of the defile, a large figure silhouetted for a moment against the blinding white of the lightning. He turned to tell Caran Tuith that he thought the dogfaced men had succeeded in climbing the cliffs and were coming over the top of the hill when, in another flash of lightning, he saw in the young King’s face a sudden alertness as he moved away from Bataan as if readying himself for combat. Bataan did not need to ask what the lightning had revealed to his friend. He too readied himself, and turned his eyes back to the defile trying to discern any shape or movement in the darkness, the figure on the crest above forgotten.

For a moment the storm seemed to lessen a little, like a squall at sea that suddenly abates to give a moments quiet respite before returning with renewed force. In that lull they heard the sound of movement amongst the rocks as feet dislodged loose stones and sent them clattering downhill. As the wind and rain returned Bataan thought that he heard the sound of shouting voices. Then the whole sky flashed white with a tremendous sheet of lightning that lit the ground before them in stark black and white. In its glare the three stared in disbelief at the scene in the defile. The dogfaced men where there, but they were not climbing up to fight. They were struggling in the mesh of nets whose ends were held by large figures straining to keep their footing on the crest above. Once more all was plunged into darkness, and an immediate and deafening crash of thunder showed that the storm was directly overhead.

Although their faces were hidden in the dark, both Bataan and Caran Tuith’s wore the same bewildered expression. The strange tableau, cast into such stark relief by the lightning, was unexpected and confusing. Almost before they had time to have a second thought Carantor was with them.

“Run” he yelled over the noise of the storm.

 

 

 

 

Author Bio

Michael was born in Middlesbrough in the North Riding of Yorkshire, UK in 1951 where he was soon creating havoc as a short trousered rebel. Fortunately as his mother was head cook at police headquarters his numerous run ins with the constabulary were dealt with in the privacy of the family home. A junior school run by nuns, and then an excellent grammar school under the watchful eye of Marist priests educated him to have a love of literature, music and science. Though they did nothing to curb his Michael Waller (The Wizards Gift)anti-authority streak.

An initial ramble through all manner of jobs finally came to a halt in the oil and chemical industry where his love of science and all things technical provided him with gainful employment for almost thirty years. Whilst working he spent several years in the Middle East with visits to India, and around Europe before landing in the USA where he has lived for the past twenty years.

Retired now he writes, take photographs and restores vintage British motorcycles in upstate New York.

 

 Links

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Lust, Mechanics and Mini Coopers by Elle Brookes

Bella Media Management

Romantic Comedy/Adventure/Time Travel

Date Published: June 15, 2014

Part Two: Sex. Coffee. Time Travel.  Coming Soon

 

BlurbAdventure-romance author, Lesley Meryn, has lived her own share of adventures. But the one thing she has never experienced is the “coupe de foudre”, the Lightning-Bolt of Love. Connected by years of friendship to the sexy action-movie star, Jason Hambrey, Jax, the two really are “just friends” but the paparazzi are merciless, making their lives and their friendship almost impossible to sustain.

When Lesley’s Aunt dies, leaving her a piece of property in North Yorkshire, Lesley is mystified. Her aunt kept it a secret. Lesley travels to London and learns her that her aunt leased the property twenty-five years before to an ‘Historical Research Society’. The lease on the property is up for renewal. Before she makes her decision; Lesley travels to the farm to investigate

Nothing could prepare her for what she finds at the farm. Miles Sherwood is dark, devious, and desperate. He’s the very last person one would consider the head of a stuffy British ‘Historical Society’

Lesley finds him insufferable, yet irresistibly attractive. The two unknowingly share a deep connection. Whether they like it or not…it’s Lightning-Time!

 

 

Excerpt

 

“UNDONE…”

Miles stared at the computer again without seeing it. Now his brain was whirling with even more concrete, even more disturbing images. For a man who had always taken a measure of pride in his discipline and self-control he felt as though he were on the verge of losing it completely. He poured another mug of coffee from the thermos on his desk, hoping that it might help to clear his head.

The phone chirped at his elbow. He stared at it until it stopped, then rubbed his hands over the stubble on his face. He took another long drink of coffee.

When Miles looked up, she was standing there in the open doorway, watching him. He flinched slightly, wondering how she could have snuck up on him so easily. He hadn’t even heard her.

“I’m leaving,” Lesley announced firmly and quietly and without preamble. “Now.”

“We haven’t discussed the lease.” He found himself staring at her lips.

”There’s nothing for us to discuss,” she stated flatly, trying to keep from looking at him directly.

“And your car—” Miles caught her eyes with his.

“I’ll walk if I need to…” Lesley stared back at him without flinching.

“Its a long walk,” Miles replied still locking eyes with her.

“I don’t care.” Lesley swallowed, desperate to keep her resolve.

“It might rain,” he observed.

“It might,” she replied faintly.

Miles took a step towards her. “Not until we finish our business.”

“Our business can be settled by the solicitors.” Lesley took a small step away from him, her heart thudding madly.

“Why not between us?”

“I’d rather not.” She pulled her gaze away from him, fixing her eyes firmly on the painting behind him. She noted that the rapier was back in its scabbard on the wall next to the painting.

“I think we can settle this like two civilized people.”

Lesley gave a short laugh. “Do you really believe that?”

“We could at least try….” he raised a brow.

“Ahh…Don’t you think we’ve gotten a bit past that?”

Miles scratched his cheek thoughtfully. “I must have missed that part.”

“Missed it? You engineered it!” Lesley faced him, offering her bruised wrists for his inspection.

“I believe that you made a considerable contribution in that regard.” he replied dryly, tilting his head to the rapier on the wall.

Lesley stared at him a moment, then dropped herself obstinately into the beleaguered upholstered chair.

“I thought you were leaving,” he said.

“Oh, I am.”

“Then kindly do it, so I can get back to work.” As if.

Miles folded his arms against his chest and leaned back against the desk. He raised his chin to the door. He was torn between the dread that she would do just that and the hope that he could think of something to get her to stay.

“If you’re going to go, then go.” He thought that perhaps reverse psychology would work with someone as seemingly perverse as she was. He smiled inwardly. She was almost as bad as he was. “I can have Conan take you to the train station.”

Lesley stared at him then moved her attention to behind him resting it on the painting, then on the rapier hung on the wall beside it. After admiring it for a few seconds, she came to a decision.

“That’s yours. then?” She turned her head to the sword.

“Yes, it is.”

“Do you know how to use it?”

His eyes slitted dangerously at her. “What are you getting at?

“Is that just for decoration, or do you know how to use it?”

“Maybe.” His mouth set into a firm line.

“Mmm…” she paused. “Have you got another one?”

“If you’re thinking what I’m thinking, then stop thinking about it.”

“What is it you think I’m thinking about?”

“I don’t even want to think about it.”

“You were the one who suggested that we settle this like two civilized people.”

“You are out of your mind…” he hissed between his teeth. “How can you even suggest—”

“I consider it a rather civilized way of resolving our differences. Well, it used to be, in any case.”

“I consider it out of the question.”

“Why?” she asked.

He turned away from her, raking back his disheveled hair, not certain just how he should respond to her.

“I’d like to propose a little wager.” Lesley stuck her chin out at him, the defiant eight year old still very much a part of her.

“A what?” His head swiveled to face her.

“You heard me, a wager. If you win, you get the lease renewed, same terms, no questions asked, for whatever length of time you require. “

“And if I lose?” he asked softly.

“If you lose… you tell me what it is you’re really doing here. I mean really. The absolute truth.”

“I thought I’d already done that,” Miles replied calmly, “told you the truth…”

Lesley offered him a wry twisted smile. “Nah….I don’t think so. There’s more.”

“What makes you think that?” Miles asked, humoring her.

“Mmm…” Lesley raised a brow as she took stock of him again. “If there isn’t, then what have you got to worry about?”

Miles looked down, shaking his head.

“You’re afraid.”

“Of you? No.” Miles raised his head slowly. “For you…yes.”

“I’m not. What do you say?”

“You’re very sure of yourself, aren’t you?” His brows rose.

“No more than you appear to be,” came the response.

“I think you have the wrong idea about me, D’Artagnan.”

“I don’t think that at all.”

Miles took her in carefully, the set of her jaw, her flashing eyes, the determined set of her lips. Oh God, those luscious delicious lips. He could no more set upon her with a sword than he could willingly smash the treasure of a priceless Fabergé Egg. No matter how much she provoked him.

“I suppose you’ve changed your mind about me, then…” he replied dryly, taking yet another tack.

“What do you mean?”

“Yesterday you declared me a man without principles. What could possibly have happened between then and now that would lead you to believe I would keep to the terms of any wager you cared to propose? In a duel of honor?”

Lesley had no response to this.

“Listen to me, you selfish brat. You want to go, then go. For whatever reason you’ve chosen to concoct, it’s not enough that we fence words, now you want to use the real thing. You have no idea what you’re proposing, or who you’re dealing with. And I’m weary of playing games with you. And I adamantly refuse to be a character in one of your self-indulgent literary exploits.” He gave her an exasperated wave. “Ach!”

She stared at him, speechless, for several moments. The heat of adrenaline flashed through her. He was so devilishly handsome, those black eyes flashing at her, and so… so…

“You’re insufferable!” she finally breathed.

“Thank you,” he nodded. “From someone who has elevated the concept into an art form, that is high praise indeed.”

Shaking, and outraged beyond words, Lesley gathered herself up and started for the door.

“What? No scathing retort?” Miles commented quietly, not able to stop himself.             “No parting sarcastic remark?”

Lesley paused, her fingers trembling on the door handle. There was everything in her that wanted to reply, yet she held back, unwilling to allow him to succeed in his attempt to goad her. With a deep breath of resolve, she wrenched the door open and walked down the long tiled passageway.

Miles stared at the open door, the sound of her boots receded down the long corridor. With each step the haze in his head grew stronger and the roar louder, and he found that he was having difficulty breathing. He knew he had to do something or else he would never be able to function or think clearly again. He had so much unresolved sexual tension, building up from the first electric moment he’d seen her, he had to do something. And he realized then, that he would do just about anything to keep her from leaving. He swallowed, took two deep breaths and cursed himself for his weakness and for what he was about to do.

“Wait!” he called from behind the door, and down the passageway her boots slowed. “Wait! I’ll do it!” He listened for a reply. There were no footsteps. He held his breath.

Carefully, he tilted his head around the door and came face to face with her. She stood silent, watching him, waiting. He found himself caught up, transfixed by those hazy smoky emerald eyes, and he knew he was lost.

“I’ll do it. Damn you,” he whispered. “I’ll do it…”

She smiled. And it sent a fiery cold shiver down his spine, which was surprisingly, frighteningly, familiar.

 

 

Author Bio

Elle grew up in Los Angeles, California, but has lived in San Francisco and then Jamaica when she was a Peace Corps Volunteer.  At the age of  twelve she bOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAecame obsessed with keeping falcons in the back yard. Fortunately, for the hundreds of hapless French poodles living in the San Fernando Valley at the time, she was not allowed to do this. In the course of the following years, she took on the challenges of earlier times, learning how to fence, how to ride horses, archery skills, and she even took a “Grand Tour of Europe”. Travel continues to be a passion of hers. Her father always claimed that she had been born into the wrong century.  He may have been right.  Elle currently lives in the central highlands of Costa Rica with her dog Pixie, and her hedgehog, Quiller.

 

 

 

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Wings of the Butterfly by S.M. Pace [BookBlitz]

wings-butterfly-pace-ebook

Young Adult

YA Fantasy

Date Published: August 15, 2014

 

Three nations teeter on the brink of war, and caught in the middle, a brother and sister find themselves surrounded by dangers they never imagined.

Adopted by the Yurha, Toby still struggles to properly fit in.  Hunting in the forest, he stumbles across a jeweled cuff that attaches to his wrist and won’t come off.  Afraid at first, he is soon thrilled to discover the cuff carries powerful magic.  But as he tries to control it, he realizes the cuff is still linked to its original owner – an owner who will go to cruel lengths to get his magic back.

Miles away, Toby’s twin sister Ora struggles with life in a strange city.  She and family have fled Yois for Nietza, where Ora will not be arrested for possessing magic.  However, Nietza is not the magical paradise Ora had imagined.  Despite her new friends, she can’t feel safe in a country where women are little more than pawns.

Secrets, brutal murders and war edging ever closer drive both siblings from their safe places.  Failure to stop those who pursue them will mean a fate worse than death.

 

 

Excerpt

 

Toby worked at the wrist cuff, but it hardly budged. It had become something like a piece of his arm.

Leaves shuddered overhead. A pair of squirrels raced over the branches, chittering. Toby sat alone against the bole of a tree, a half mile or so from the settlement. No sign of an oversized hawk, but he had a better idea than scanning the branches. He’d ended up inside the hawk’s mind before. He thought he could do it again.

He stripped away his leggings and loin cloth and laid them beside him. Naked, he shivered, despite the unusual heat of the mid-autumn day. A thrill of fear coursed through him at the other part of his plan. The memory of pale fur sprouting across his arm stuck hard in Toby’s head. If it means what I think it means, the thought drifted as Toby steadied his breathing. He pressed his back against the rough bark and sank into the wrist cuff.

The wellspring of magic nearly swallowed him. He tried to imitate what Kyat had done, pushing his awareness away from the crystals, and into the metal. A different power, with the taste of metal, stung him.

Blackness swallowed him. He fought to stay aware. Everything shifted, spun, and someone else’s mind swept over and around him. He glimpsed scaled claws and dark feathers. The hawk.

He watched through the creature’s eyes, and felt what it felt. Spasms wracked its body. One claw flattened, flexed, the scales melting away to reveal a misshapen foot. Toby cried out at the pain of even that small success. Then the foot twitched and turned back into a claw, and with a strangled cry, the hawk took flight.

Toby was thrown back into his body. He knew the hawk hid somewhere at the north-eastern edge of the pack’s territory, where the hills began to give way to mountains. He’d also learned something else; the feel of a type of magic he’d never experienced before. He sent his mind back into the wrist cuff.

He pushed away the bits of his magic, and other magics he couldn’t name. In the midst of those, the cuff held a bundle of power that curled and writhed. Shifting magic.

To wear fur and run on all fours. To howl and tumble with his brothers. To run with the pack during full moon hunts, and take down a deer with his teeth. To be a wolf, like his family. To be truly one of them.

Toby willed every ounce of those thoughts into the magic and spread it through his body.

A cramp struck his lower belly and doubled him over, then dropped him to his knees. His chest tightened and, for a moment, panic seized him, and he wanted to shove the magic away.

He breathed slowly while spasms wracked his body. The bones in his legs cracked first, shifting, and forcing him to stand awkwardly on his hands and feet. Then his arms and back twisted. His face crunched, stretched. His shoulders popped. Fur grew, like tiny pins bursting out of his skin. The whine of an animal spilled from his throat.

 

 

Author Bio

S. M. Pace lives with her husband in the wilds of Virginia, along with a pond full of fish, a turtle and too many squirrels.  When she’s not writing, she’s wrangling a dozen pre-schoolers, learning a new recipe or reading.

Website: http://spacewomen/home/

Twitter: @StephMPace

Blog: smpace.com

S. M. Pace’s Fantasy World Post – Sign up to Fantasy World Post and get worldbuilding snippets, short fiction and behind the scenes peeks at my current WIP.  All free, just for signing up.

 

 

Fallen by Laury Falter [BookBlitz]

 fallen-cover_FINAL

 

Young Adult

Young Adult Fantasy

Date Published: April 1, 2009

 

 Blurb

Maggie is unaware of the terrifying fate that awaits her. It isn’t until she lands in New Orleans for a full year at a private high school and her unknown enemies find her does she realize that her life is in danger.

 As a mystifying stranger repeatedly intervenes and blocks the attempts on her life, she begins to learn that there is more to him than his need to protect her and that he may be the key to understanding why her enemies have just now arrived.

 Excerpt

 

“I apologize for the delay, Abaddon.”

I turned my head to find Eran standing beside me, no more than a few inches away.

Excitement swelled inside me, so powerful I couldn’t have contained it if I’d wanted to. The nervousness now displayed on Abaddon’s face gave me even stronger encouragement.

I wanted so desperately to reach out and wrap my arms around Eran, wanted it more than anything in the world. My desperate yearning was only being held back because I still couldn’t move.

I’m not sure Eran would have allowed it anyways. He was a warrior, and he was now engaged in battle. Besides, I was nothing more to him than someone to save.

Eran didn’t look my way but kept his focus on Abaddon, who stepped back a few paces, his confidence faltering.

It was Sarai who strolled forward, self-assured, placing herself in the middle.

As she strolled by Abaddon, she mused, “Don’t worry, I believe I can handle this one.” Her face curled up into a hideous grin as she continued her approach.

I knew then what she planned…but it was too late.

“Eran, so good to see you again…” she whispered in a low drawl.

“No!” I screamed enraged, waiting for Eran to fall to the ground, whimpering with desperation as Rufus had done.

Eran remained standing.

A moment passed and Sarai’s face contorted, confusion setting in. Her state of shock became more defined, deepening further when he finally replied.

“You don’t work on me, Sarai…” I watched in disbelief as his gorgeous smirk, the one I missed so deeply, rose up. Eran turned and his stunning eyes settled on me, concentrating so intently I could not have mistaken his message. “I’m already in love.”

The world changed for me at that moment. As Eran’s confession hung in the air, I felt the passion and the power in me swell. Nothing was impossible now.

Sarai’s mouth fell open, a shaken sigh escaping. She then looked at me, her eyes narrowing in fury as Eran’s words sunk in.

Eran flippantly disregarded her, turning to address Abaddon. “You are outnumbered. You are overpowered. You have allowed yourself to be cornered. Shoddy work, Abaddon.”

As I watched their interaction, it dawned on me that Eran was enjoying this moment and that it appeared to have been long overdue. I felt a smile on my lips, nearly causing me to giggle.

It was then Abaddon released me. I fell to the ground, hitting it hard but overwhelmed with relief. I glanced up, wondering what power Eran had over Abaddon to give up his hold on me.

In an instant, I realized what had happened.

Abaddon had let me go willingly. He needed his energy – all of it – for another reason…

Leaning forward, Abaddon’s arms extended, his feet sweeping up from the ground, as he lunged for Eran.

 

 

 

 Author Bio

Laury Falter is a bestselling author of young adult romantic suspense and urban fantasy. She is also an animal rights activist, a sailor, a one-handed golf putterer, and a Colorado River conqueror.profile_pic

She has three series out: the Guardian Trilogy, the Residue Series, and the Apocalypse Chronicles.

 

 

 

 

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Second to the Right by Elizabeth Los [BookBlitz + Giveaway]

SotR cover

Fantasy

Date Published: May 9, 2014

Spawned from an ancient promise, treachery and intrigue follow the protagonists through our world and one lost to the waves. Bound by an invisible bond, they are thrust into a fantastical world of pirates and demons.

James Benedict is a just man haunted by evil. Pushed to the edge, everything stripped from him, a new man arises . . . a man whose name strikes fear into the hearts of all who hear it: “Captain Hook”.

Eileen Davis was a timid woman. Through a fateful cruise she finds herself in the company of the Captain of the Mistral Thief. With his guidance, and the meddling of the local barista, she eventually finds her inner strength.

Will the two of them unite through time to fulfill the promise of their ancestors or will tempers ignite leading all to failure?

 

 

Excerpt

 

Eileen woke with a start. Carefully, she peeled back the privacy sheet. A lump caught in her throat. The cabin door was open. She frowned. In the dim moonlight, a shadow stood just within the captain’s quarters. It moved. Her heart raced. She blinked, then stared. The dark silhouette glided silently. She watched, unbelieving. The shape loomed over the captain. She released the sheet.

He doesn’t know. He’s still asleep. I have to do something. But what? Her thoughts rattled through her mind. She had to be quick.

As quiet as possible, she slipped from her hammock. Her stocking feet made no sound. She crouched. Her fingers slid down her leg until they found her dagger. She removed the blade. Her hand trembled as she pulled back the sheet. Squinting, she could make out the shape. She rose. The floor creaked under her shifting weight.

Red eyes stared at her from across the room. They seemed to float in midair. She held her breath. The hairs on the back of her neck rose. She blinked. The eyes grew larger. She looked to the door. When she looked back, the eyes were closer. She panicked. The shadow lunged towards her.

Eileen screamed. “Captain! Captain, wake up!” She stomped on the floor boards and yelled, “Smythe! Anyone! The captain’s in danger!”

The creature howled.

Eileen swung her dagger at the intruder. He slid to the right. She slashed. He slipped to the left. She thrust. Her blade met air. He moved with little effort. And now, he drew closer. She slashed haphazardly. She hit nothing.

The shadow hissed. She felt a rush of wind. The creature flew at her. A powerful blow to the chest, her back slammed into the wall. She tried to defend herself. Another rush of wind and her dagger was knocked out of her hand. Her head hit the wall. Sliding to the floor, she felt cold. She heard a raspy inhalation. Looking up she was met with red eyes that glared at her. A cold breeze wrapped around her. She tried for her dagger, but it was gone. As she struggled for breath, her hearing diminished. The shadow loomed over her. Eileen’s vision tunneled until darkness enveloped her and there was nothing.

 

 

 

Author Bio

Elizabeth uses writing as therapy, her release from everyday stress. At night, after work and once the children are finally tucked in bed, for the fifth time, she sits at her laptop and lets her imagination flow.ELosBnW

Elizabeth has produced short stories, one of which will be published in an anthology. She’s had fun writing a Sherlock Holmes fan fiction story, A Case of Need, based on the BBC’s Sherlock. By July 2011, her first novel, Second on the Right, had been completed. She spent several years polishing the story in order to provide a high quality product to the public. Second on the Right is her first professional novel.

 

 

 

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The Wild Hunt by Ron C. Nieto [BookBlitz + Giveaway]

The-Wild-Hunt-ebook

Mature YA Paranormal
Date Published: May 29, 2014
Add to Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21416356-the-wild-hunt

Blurb

 

Magic still lingers in the mist-covered corners of the world, wherever the Old Ways are remembered. However, as civilization and reason scoff at the Fair Folk, the paths to power have been forgotten by all but a few.

Lily Boyd was meant to become a faerie doctor, a warden of humans and a keeper of balance, until disbelief and pragmatism led her away from the hidden world and into a mundane life. But truth has a way to be Heard and she will be forced to face it if she wants to save her family.

Armed with nothing but her childhood memories and protected by a debt of gratitude she doesn’t understand, Lily must decide who to trust while she navigates a world that is darker and more twisted than she is prepared for.

And should she make the wrong choice, should she mistake friend and foe… the eternal balance between the Faerie Courts may shatter, and then there will be more than Lily’s life on the line.

Guest Post

The Wild Hunt Soundtrack

If you have read anything about me, even the one random quote, you know how important music is in my writing. Without the right soundtrack, I’m quite unable to get the story to flow! For the Wild Hunt, I’ve used a pretty huge list, probably the most varied of all my books so far, but there are some songs that just fit too perfectly, and those are the ones I want to share with you today:

The Lady of Shallot, by Loreena McKennitt
Okay, this song is simply beautiful. But beyond that, it talks about a woman who lives experiencing life through a mirror, never seeing the real thing… and when she does, it kills her. Really, listen to the lyrics: they’re appropriate!


• The Elfin Knight
An old traditional Scottish ballad about an elfin knight who wants a woman, but there are some impossible conditions for them to be each other’s true love.

• Scarborough Fair – Nolwenn Leroy
Another traditional ballad about two lovers who’ve fallen apart. One of them gives some impossible conditions to the other if they want to go back to being lovers… And yes, I realize this is a bit of a theme, and yes it does make sense with the series.

• Arrival to Earth (Transformers OST) – Steve Jablonsky
Tell me it isn’t suitably epic and moving and I’ll eat my own computer. Enough said.

• Nerevar Rising (The Elder Scrolls III OST) – Jeremy Soule
Another incredibly epic song, sad and uplifting at the same time. A great fit for some parts of the novel where the feels are specially strong!

 

Author Bio

Ron C. Nieto is a fantasy and romance author who has been writing in her secluded fortress for the longest time. Recently, she had a talk with her cat and deauthor_piccided that she should share her creations, because it was selfish to hoard them all for herself.

If you would like to know more about her, please visit her website.

 

Giveaway

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Becoming the Chateran by S.J. Aisling [BookBlitz + Giveaway]

 

 

Becoming the Chateran Cover (Front)

Fantasy

Date Published: February 1, 2014

When Princess Rhea’s actions inadvertently condemn two innocent knights to death, she wakes to the hard reality that not even nobility is above the law. All her attempts to remedy the situation only complicate it, however, until she finds herself a fugitive in her own kingdom, having dragged her best friend into the trouble, as well. Their only hope for pardon? To accompany Sir Paladin and Sir Zephen in their sentence:

Slay, or be slain by, the Dragons of Sama-Ael-Fen.

Travelling incognito, they meet with more malicious Phoenixes than could be coincidental, discover the mysterious disappearance of numerous citizens, and come face to face with a reawakened evil power. With the kingdom oblivious to the connection of these dangers, it’s up to Rhea and her outlaw companions to stop the rising threat and redeem their names – if they can survive their quest.

Excerpt

Shouting and confusion suddenly rose up from within the castle, and Julen, almost losing his footing once more, scrambled for a better hold on the window bars. He faced into the wind as it shoved him against the tower, the loud cry ringing off the walls of the castle once again, and his jaw dropped. A flashing, red thing was speeding through the air towards the castle. Its enormous wings created the gale that had suddenly burst out, followed by waves of heat. Julen couldn’t move, clinging to the tower in horror as the Dragon swept low over the castle.

Valkdrava… the rumors are true, then!

All the brown-tinted trees far below shook and creaked, leaves scattering thick on the blast of wind. The power of the Dragon’s wingbeats pushed Julen from his window ledge, and he tumbled down, landing miraculously on the castle wall fifteen feet below. Bursts of light exploded in his view, and he couldn’t breathe, but then larger, fiercer, and redder flashes rent the air above him, and the voice of Vanna crying out his name stirred him. Somehow he found himself on his feet, swaying like a reed in the wind, and yet clutching his drawn hunting knife in his fist. The Valkdrava banked on the sweltering wind of its own creation, sending hay from the stack by the stable, torn pennants, and loosened tiles swirling through the air. Opening its mouth, it sent a stream of fire onto the wooden structures inside the bailey. The terrified shrieks and cries of the horses and other livestock in the buildings filled the air, and the shouting and screams of people joined the din as the Dragon swooped down again and again, each time sending fire into yet another spot within the castle. Within moments, Julen found himself surrounded by flames on the walls, with no way of getting down into the bailey and helping.

A troop of guards and soldiers burst from the armory and raced towards the Dragon, which had just perched on top of the great hall’s roof with a splintering of large glass windows and an avalanche of carved stone and tiles. The Dragon gave one look at the advance, and within seconds, all that remained of the soldiers lay piled in ashes and twisted metal in the courtyard. Then the Dragon, after grinding in the roof of the great hall like a kitchen maid kneads dough, turned and fixed its livid eyes on Julen.

 


Author Bio

Stacia Joy has always loved to tell stories and invent fictional lands and characters. But she never considered becoming a writer herself until age thirteen, when, inspired by a pretend play she invented with a friend, she wrote the first draft of Becoming the Chateran. The story has since expanded into what SJAislingAuthorPhotowill become The Chateran Series. Stacia Joy also writes in several other genres, including steampunk and paranormal/science fiction, and occasionally writes poems about buffalo.

Wanting to be able to show others what her imagined universe looks like, Stacia Joy taught herself to draw by studying the work of illustrators like Alphonse Mucha, Arthur Rackham, Kate Seredy, and Jan Brett. She also received training in illustration and graphic design at Madison Area Technical College, and plans to become a full-fledged freelance illustrator before long.

When not immersed in writing or art, Stacia Joy spends her time playing the piano and folk harp, composing music, Irish dancing, singing at the top of her lungs, and learning new things. She also enjoys helping with children’s ministry at her church, and currently resides in the Madison, Wisconsin area with a kitten named Lord Peter Whimsey.

 

 

 

 

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Crossing Forbidden Lines by J.W. Baccaro [BookBlitz + Giveaway]

crossingforbiddenlines

GS2

Title: Crossing Forbidden Lines

Author: J.W. Baccaro

Genre: Dark Wizard / Coming of Age Fantasy

The Elemental Crystals were originally created to protect the earth. However, Abaddon the Demon Lord plans to use them to transform the earth into a realm of haunting darkness and witchery, forever. In Guiding The Blue Flame, a young but powerful Nasharin Warrior, Darshun Luthais is drawn to one of these magical crystals of immense power. He learns he’s the fulfillment of the two thousand year old Prophecy of the Guardian. The Wizard Olchemy informs him that he is the protector and guardian the earth has been waiting for.

With Darshun’s ability to sense the Elemental Crystals, Olchemy devises a plan to obtain them. Accompanied by a small group of companions the hunt is on, in hopes to retrieve the long lost crystals before the Demon Lord claims them. During the journey, Darshun encounters Aurora, the sole survivor of a now extinct people. He falls in love for the first time, and now resents the so-called Guardian of the Prophecy role.

Due to Darshun’s naïve spirit he’s caught off guard by Nayland, a mysterious dark warrior who confronts him about his abandonment of the quest. He reveals that he too, is a Nasharin warrior, though far exceeding Darshun in skill and power. Darshun’s father, Mirabel saves him from death at the hands of Nayland.

Outmatched and in bewilderment from the attack, a fire awakens in Darshun. He plans on reaching his father’s level of power with a journey to Shajin Island, where Nasharin Warriors train. He’ll be gone for only one day in Earth realm time, but due to the magic of the rigorous island, it will be seven long years for him. Entering the mystical realm of Shajin, he eagerly awaits its life threatening challenges.

In Crossing Forbidden Lines, Darshun faces a solemn heartbreaking betrayal by the woman he loves and is left dying from a hideous torture inflicted by the Queen’s guards. He is healed by a female Elf, Kelarin who he calls his angel.

Feeling his power to be tripled, he battles Queen Talvenya’s son and slays him. Thus, earning the Queen’s undying vow of revenge. Afterward, he faces the Demon Lord in a fierce battle which nearly kills him once again. After a mysterious Elder nurses him back to health, he returns to his father, Mirabel to help defeat the massive army of the Demon Lord.

Excerpt

 The High Wizard Levieth stood up from his seat upon the balcony, gazed down at Darshun, then summoned black clouds and smoke. It materialized over the entire battlegrounds, overshadowing the mid-afternoon sun. The crowd began chanting praises about the Dark King and Queen with melodies evil in tone, hardly describable. This entire process meant to install fear into Darshun, as they normally did to their other victims. Then rays of light began to pierce through the darkness soon eradicating it completely and Levieth shouted aloud: “Let the games begin!” His voice echoed across the land like thunder.

A large section of the stonewall on the south end of the battlegrounds slowly ascended like a door and out of the shadows came the Six Champions. Two were sickly pale-faced Cullach, both wearing studded leather, armed with double-edged swords. There also stood a Barbarian woman having long scarlet hair, clothed in a dark green leather vest, a large silver belt with the skulls of either monkeys or little children attached to it and a chainmail skirt, wielding a battle axe. Then there were two men looking as if they lived in the wild all their lives with greenish-gray eyes, long scraggly black hair and rough dark beards. One carried a double-speared staff, the other a sickle. Alongside them, stood a seven foot Draconian with fangs reaching down to its chin, clothed in hide armor and holding a war hammer, the steel head twice as thick as its skull. All looked incredibly strong. The crowd cheered them on as they approached Darshun.

“A Nasharin skull would be worth a lot of gold these days,” one of the Cullach spoke.

“The skull is mine!” the Barbarian woman shouted. “I want it around my waist.”

“Now now, remember we cannot kill him,” said the Draconian. “The Queen’s orders.”

“She gets all the fun,” the Barbarian hissed. “Fine, if we cannot kill him we will show him pain he never thought existed. What do you say to that pretty boy?”

“I’d say these odds are hardly fair,” Darshun quipped, fancifully throwing back his hair. “So I’ll tell you what, I’ll keep my eyes closed. That way you all will have at least a slight chance of beating me.”

“Ha!” laughed one of the men. “Don’t you know who we are?”

Darshun looked to him in amusement. “Why of course…the ‘Six Fools.’ ”

The warrior threw his arm up clenching a fist. “Insolent creature! Each of us has been trained in the Fighting Arts, reaching the level of Master. We’ve destroyed countless lives. A weakling like you shall just be another!”

“Are you through babbling? Because I am ready.” He closed his eyes.

Feeling annoyed by Darshun’s arrogance they slowly surrounded him, stepping closer and closer each passing second, then remained in their place, eyes’ strictly bent on him.

All grew quiet, the crowd, High Wizard and Prince eagerly awaiting the battle. A gust of wind passed, and abruptly the two champions—one Human, one Cullach—swung their weapons at Darshun’s head, attempting to split his skull in two different parts.

He sidestepped, swung his sword twice, once left another right and they fell to his feet face down, bodies throbbing. Still having his eyes closed Darshun stepped away, so the blood wouldn’t touch his shoes.

For the crowd, along with the fellow Champions, it seemed difficult to tell where he’d gotten them, for his speed could not be followed. Both the Barbarian and Draconian set a foot under their bellies and rolled them over to find two slashes aligned down the center of their foreheads and to their groins.

 

 

Author Bio

J.W.Baccaro is the author of the Guardian Series. In his free time he enjoys literature—fiction and non-fiction, playing electric guitar in the heavy metal band Rigor Hill, Consciousness and NDE studies, and thinking how to intertwine his thoughts about the world’s myths, legends and distinct truths into his novels. He lives in upstate Me_and_AlexNY with his wife Melissa, his son Alexander, his two German Shepherds and his three cats.

 

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The Six Days by Anna Carolyn McCormally [BookBlitz]

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TSD_McCormally_book cover

 


Title: The Six Days

Author: Anna McCormally

Genre: YA Fantasy

Fifteen years ago, in the middle of the night, Jamie Carpenter’s mother went up to the dark lighthouse on the cliffs. She never came back.

Yesterday, Jamie had a nightmare: his little brother disappearing like their mother did, through the door of the lighthouse, a door that has never opened.

Today, the nightmare came true. Jamie’s brother is missing. And not just missing–he’s been abducted, taken through the lighthouse door into the world of magic that lays beyond.

With his best friend Nia at his side, Jamie crosses into a world he never knew existed–but Emanu is not the fairytale world of childrens stories. Desperate to understand who took Danny and why, struggling to survive in a world of shadowy magic, Jamie and Nia seek the help of the Council of Witches. As they uncover more and more of Jamie’s family secrets and unknown powers, it becomes clear that Nia herself may be something more than human–and that it’s her the Council views as their biggest threat…

Swept up in a dark political game they don’t understand, burdened by magic they don’t know how to use, Jamie and Nia are going to have to learn fast if they’re going to survive Emanu and rescue Danny Carpenter. There are only six days until the gate between worlds closes again.

For good.

 

 

 

Excerpt

“Nia was giving Cal’s injured shoulder the evil eye and reached for the sword that was lying beneath him. She drew it, went to open the cut on her palm.

“Hey!” Rowan said, and reached over and swatted the blade away. “Don’t do that. What are you trying to do?”

Surprised, Nia said, “Blood, for the healing spell,” and Rowan shook his head.

“Barbaric,” he muttered. “There are better ways to heal.” He glanced at her. “But you don’t need to use Old Magic—you’re a witch, aren’t you?”

Curiously she said, “How did you know? Is it because I’m translating?”

Rowan blinked. “What language are you speaking?” he asked.

“English,” Nia said tentatively.

“Huh,” Rowan said, and shrugged. “Well, I’m speaking Anharan. But even if you were human, I’d still translate. No, it’s your pendant,” he said, raising his eyebrows and nodding at Nia’s necklace. “A human would never wear the Council’s symbol. What’s your name?”

“Nia. Junia. And that’s—that’s Jamie, this is Cal.”

“Junia,” Rowan repeated. He had a funny look on his face. “Listen—if you don’t want to get noticed by scum like the Captain back there you’d better learn to hide better than that—the hourglass there, and on your sword. The Council isn’t…universally popular. And your eyes don’t give you away so it should be easier to hide.” But then he frowned. “How old are you?”

“Eighteen,” said Nia, sounding a little defensive.

Rowan looked quizzical. “They should have changed,” he said. “Are you half, too? Or whole?”

Nia didn’t say anything. She did not, Jamie realized, know.

Maybe Rowan could tell Nia was uncomfortable. “At any rate,” he said. “Just give me a minute and I’ll heal his shoulder without cutting anybody up.””

 


Author Bio

Anna Carolyn McCormally currently manages a small used bookstore in Washington, D.C.. She has a tattoo of the DeaMcCormally_photothly Hallows and blogs about YA fiction at www.giantsquidbooks.com.. Her short fiction and poetry has been published in pacificREVIEW, Quantum Fairy Tales and 3 am magazine. Follow her on Twitter @mccormallie.

 

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Serendipidus by Jennifer Ott [BookBlitz]

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Blurb

Title: Serendipidus

Author: Jennifer Ott

Genre: Fantasy Satire

“Maybe it’s time to set aside intellectualism and experience the wonders of thngs that can’t be explained.”

The Earth has stopped rotating and no one seems to notice or care, except for bleeding-heart supermodel Venetia DeMille. While Mother Earth begins to fade into a silent death, Venetia clings to hope. She solicits the help of a scientist to help, but no avail.

Not to be hindered in her quest to save the Earth, Venetia sets out on a journey around the world to find like-minded people and caring souls – an exuberant youth, a magical healer and a man of God. Although together they are able to rekindle faith, their effort still does not provide results. It is a mysterious meeting of four horsemen that carry them to the east where they experience a connection to the earth and each other.

Could the forces that gather with their united efforts prove to be the remedy to save the planet?

Excerpt

Dark, menacing clouds swirled in the sky. Fierce winds blew. Trash lofted in gusts and even birds had trouble fighting the strong squall. Venetia lowered her head, sheltering her face as she plowed forward with the crowd. She didn’t notice that she tread on a short, square-looking man, knocking him face first to the cement sidewalk. His briefcase cracked open and papers spewed across the sidewalk.

“Oh no,” said Venetia, kneeling to the man’s aid. “I didn’t see you.”

The man popped upright proudly, straightening his bow tie. Despite the seriousness, there gleamed a sensibility in his eyes. “Well then, perhaps you should open your eyes.” Staring straight at Venetia, his shorter stature gave him direct eye contact with the nape of her slender neck. He squared his shoulders, adjusted his black thick-rimmed glasses and looked up into her eyes. “You could be quite dangerous to others when you’re not watching where you’re going.”

“But it’s hard to see in this wind,” replied Venetia, “the trash and dust could sting my eyes.”

“Or you could trample over a fellow citizen!” the man scolded.

Venetia did not like the man’s tone, especially since it was an accident. She was well acquainted with those who talked down to her, talked around her and even talked as if she wasn’t there at all, but seldom was she scolded by a serious, scowling pint-sized man. All she wanted to do was thrust her hands on her hips and give him a piece of her mind. “Well, I’m sorry.”

The man scoffed as he lowered to retrieve his belongings: a broken pointer, documents with pedestrian footprints and sketches ripped to shreds. “I am a scientist!” the man cried out, “I do not have time for a stampede of civilization!”

Suddenly ashamed of her judgment, Venetia numbly watched the man struggle against the tide of people. “You are a scientist?”

Hugging his broken pointer and shredded documents to his chest, he pressed his thick glasses to his face. “Miss, I am Doctor Poindexter Scheigopherer,” he said, as if it were a household name. “Do you realize that the increased amount of toxins in the Earth’s atmosphere is causing the Earth to turn at a faster rotation, thus devastating the fabric of our very existence?”

“Is that why it has been so windy?” asked Venetia.

Poindexter chuckled. “Why, aren’t you the smart one?”

“You don’t have to be so mean about it! I was only asking,” replied Venetia.

One of Poindexter’s flyers blew around Venetia’s ankles. She reached for the flyer and read: How excess toxins in the Earth’s atmosphere increase the rate of rotation. The admirable Doctor Poindexter Scheigopherer demonstrates his theory of ARR at the World’s Fair. “ARR?” questioned Venetia curiously.

“Yes. Accelerated Rapid Rotation—ARR.” Poindexter ripped the flyer from her hand. “Now if you don’t mind, I have important business to attend.”

With his arms full he headed off, leaving Venetia with questions and doubt.

 

Author Bio

Inspiration comes from watching way too much Monty Python. The abstract and the absurd way of looking at normal life, not only offers humor, but questions many problems in society in a light-hearted manner. If we can laugh at ourselves, if we can laugh at life, problems do not seem quite so difficult to tackle.  In fact, problems are not as complicated as they seem; everything is very simple. If you Bio Picsmcan laugh at it, write about it and read about it, most likely one would think about it. Author Jennifer Ott has written several satire fiction, Wild Horses, The Tourist and two non-fiction books Love and Handicapping and Ooh Baby Compound Me! Her latest book about the homecoming of a Vietnam Veteran, Edge of Civilization will be released soon. Jennifer Ott lives in Long Beach, California, enjoys the sun, the sand, the surf and lots of Mexican food.

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The Queen of Zombie Hearts: The White Rabbit Chronicles Book 3 by Gena Showalter [Cover Reveal]

COVER REVEAL

My heart just STOPPED when I heard Gena Showalter was revealing her next WHITE RABBIT CHRONICLES cover, but also cause Book Suburbia was so kindly invited to share this AWESOMENESS with everybody!!!, so here it is:

Today is the day! The cover of Gena Showalter’s THE QUEEN OF ZOMBIE HEARTS is here! We’re so excited to be able to share this with you as it joins an already stunning set! Ready to see it? Not quite yet lets take a look a the first two covers in the series!

First there was ALICE IN ZOMBIELAND…

Then came THROUGH THE ZOMBIE GLASS…
Now get ready to EAT YOUR HEARTS OUT!!!
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On-sale date: Tuesday, September 30, 2014
Add it to your TBR!  Goodreads

 

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Blurb

 

I have a plan.We’ll either destroy them for good, or they’ll destroy us.

Either way, only one of us is walking away.

In the stunning conclusion to the wildly popular White Rabbit Chronicles, Alice
“Ali” Bell thinks the worst is behind her. She’s ready to take the
next step with boyfriend Cole Holland, the leader of the zombie slayers…until
Anima Industries, the agency controlling the zombies, launches a sneak attack,
killing four of her friends. It’s then she realizes that humans can be more
dangerous than monsters…and the worst has only begun.

As the surviving slayers prepare for war, Ali discovers she, too, can control
the zombies…and she isn’t the girl she thought she was. She’s connected to the
woman responsible for killing—and turning—Cole’s mother. How can their
relationship endure? As secrets come to light, and more slayers are taken or
killed, Ali will fight harder than ever to bring down Anima—even sacrificing her
own life for those she loves.

About Gena:

Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of the wildly popular White Rabbit Chronicles, the Angels of the Dark, the Lords of the Underworld, and the Otherworld Assassins series.  In addition to being a National Reader’s Choice and RITA nominee, her romance novels have appeared in Cosmopolitan and Seventeen magazine, and have been translated in multiple languages.  She lives in Oklahoma with her family and menagerie of dogs, and truly believes love conquers all.
Giveaway

1 complete set of The White Rabbit Chronicles (first 2 sent
as soon as the giveaway is over and the winner will get the first hardcover of
book 3 when it’s available!) US/Canada Only

 

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