Wednesday, October 30, 2013

A Study in Sin by August Wainwright

Part 1

On Being Introduced to an Unexplainable Woman, Words Written in Blood, and a Lost Gold Ring

Chapter 1
Introducing Ms. Remy Moreau

I lost my grip on life in the same amount of time it will take you to read this sentence.

It turns out a hundred feet is a long way to fall, even when you're at thirty thousand in a commercial liner. But in a twin prop Dash 7, it’s an oh-shit-life-flash-before-your-eyes type of moment, although, it really doesn’t have to be anything more than terrifying. Unfortunately for me, I had just unbuckled and ducked into the back of the dark plane in search of an extra piddle pack. When we dropped, I went up into the ceiling, my head, neck, and back taking the brunt of the collision.

That night, my professional life ended; the night I cracked two vertebrae.

I grew up worthless and graduated high-school slightly less worthless. It wasn’t until I dropped out of community college and joined the Air Force that I realized I had something to give, that there was an ideal I could strive for.

When I broke my neck, I was in Afghanistan, volunteering with a Special Operations unit to set up communications for a new forward operating base. The transport I hopped was running from Bagram out to the new remote location when my accident happened.

The job defined me; there was no separation between who I was as a person and what I did as an Airman. It was all I’d ever wanted, without ever knowing it – to do something worth doing, to matter.

And as quick as it came, it was gone.

Originally, the speculation was that I might have a brain injury, so they flew me to Ramstein and on to Landstuhl in Germany, where I went through the tests that determined whether or not I was still good to anyone.

The consensus came back negative.

I remember the day they came into my room and told me the good news that my brain was ok, but that I’d broken two vertebrae in my neck. My first question was if I’d walk. Yes. My second question was whether my military career was over. Yes again.

When I started seeing the physical therapist, no one could say for certain why my left arm would go numb and my hand would shake uncontrollably. The therapy did little to nothing for me. The shakes got worse. I got pissed and yelled at the therapists and told them they didn’t know what they were talking about. And the shakes got worse.

In response, I was flown back stateside and honorably discharged. No real help, no real guidance; just “Thank you for your service.” Saying I was shell-shocked was like saying an anti-tank missile is a bullet.

I’m not sure why I moved back to Washington DC; I say moved as if I had someplace else to go, like there was someone waiting for me with dinner on the table. That wasn’t the case. DC just seemed like as good a place as any. I drew disability and started seeing a therapist, as well as a physical trainer to continue treatment on my arm. But nothing we tried helped.

For the first few weeks, I looked for a job. Or, a more precise explanation would be that I filled out resumes online and pressed the send button. I blamed my unemployment on the job market, on high unemployment, on Barack Obama, on whatever was comforting at the moment. Regardless of the excuses, I always knew that playing Call of Duty for six hours a day wasn’t going to get me hired.

But I didn’t care. The jobs I applied for were ones I thought sounded cool; the ones I was qualified to do, I wanted no part of. I didn’t want to go work as a contractor; I had no desire to get back into the military world, not after the way they had discarded me like a well-chewed rack of ribs.

It hit me one day, as I ate another frozen dinner for breakfast, that I was a disabled vet. I was a vet with no job, no college degree, no desires to work as a contractor or do anything military related, and no real way to pay the bills that kept piling up. In the past few months, I had burned through what savings I had drinking beer and paying rent. The money was all but gone, and if there was one thing I knew I could count on, it was that rent was due on the first.

It was early in the afternoon a few days later and I decided to postpone the “job search”, so I dropped into a local gastro-pub around the corner for a drink. It was my third round, finally facing the full gravity of the situation I was in, when I heard someone call my name.

“Jay? How are you, man? I haven't seen you in years,” called the voice from over my right shoulder. I turned to find Sam Bartlett, an old friend from my brief stint at NOVA, staring back at me. I must have been wearing a slightly dumbfounded look, mixed with more than a hint of irritation, because his large crooked smile immediately faded.

“It's me, Sam. I know, I know, I've gained a few pounds,” he said, grabbing at his gut. “Ok, more like fifty. But how about you, how are you doing?”

I realized I was staring at him and made a conscious effort to change my demeanor. Although Sam had never been a good friend, he was always one of those guys that was just around, the truth was that it was nice to see a familiar face. The last thing I needed was to be left alone to sulk and drown away in my sorrows. I asked him to join me, which seemed to make up for the cold way I had greeted him because he laughed out loud and yelled “Hell yea, of course I will.” We grabbed a table in the corner next to the front window.

I ordered us a round of beers and he insisted I bring him up to speed. So I told him of my better days. He sat listening with complete interest, slouching onto the table, his hand holding up his fat face. By the time I got to the end, I was ready to leave.

“And apparently you can't go unemployed and still pay rent in DC on just military disability,” I said, trying to finish my story.

Sam perked up, fighting against his own body to sit up straight.

“Can't find a place to stay? Interesting. That's actually the second time today I've heard someone say that.”

“And where was the first?”

“Down at the lab, near the university. I was there this morning and a friend, well, more like an acquaintance, was complaining she had found a great apartment near Dupont Circle and can't find anyone to go in half for expenses.”

“Honestly, I don't think I can afford to live in Dupont, even if I'm splitting it,” I confessed.

“I guess she's got a great deal lined up. She said she knows an old lady who owns a bakery that has a large apartment above it that's not being used. It's not on the market so nobody else is going to rent it. She just doesn't want to take on the cost alone.” He paused and I could see him thinking about something. “But, the more I think about it, I'm not sure she's the type of person you would really want to live with.”

“Why do you say that?”

“Well,” he started, shifting and moving in his seat. I stared as his jowls shook like a bulldog; I was waiting for him to slobber, “She's a little odd. Extremely intelligent and spends a lot of time studying different subjects, but nice enough, I guess. Different, that's what she is, different.”

“So she's a student?”

“Oh, no. She doesn't go to school at the university, she just sort of hangs out there sometimes. And the lab isn't a part of the school anyways, it's more of a hangout than anything else. She studies and reads a lot and is really good with a computer, I know all that. But I really don't know what she does.”

“You're friends, and you've never asked her what she does?”

“We're not really friends. We just know each other. I'm not sure she has any real friends.”

“Either way,” I said, confused and irritated by the conversation and Sam's constant fidgeting, “I'd like to meet her and get the specifics.”

“I'm sure she's still down at the lab, we could drive over now if you wanted. Where are you parked?”

“I didn't drive.”

“I don't mind taking you.”

I agreed, and waited for him to finish sipping his beer before we took off. I turned to face him as we walked out onto the sidewalk.

“So what's this odd acquaintance of yours named?”

Sam hesitated before answering, looking up at me as if he was sorry for something.

“Remy Moreau.”

Genre – Mystery / Thriller / Suspense

Rating – PG13

More details about the author

Connect with August Wainwright on Google Plus & Twitter


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Constantinopolis by James Shipman @jshipman_author

His father! Mehmet stewed when he thought of him. His father had never shown him any real affection or spent significant time with him. He was not, after all, originally the heir to the Sultanate. He was a second son and only became heir when his older brother died. Mehmet had been forced from then on to endure a frantic and often harsh tutoring process. He was just beginning to grasp his responsibilities when at the age of 12 his father had retired and named him Sultan. He had done the best he could to govern, but in short order Grand Vizier Halil had called his father back to take over the throne. The Sultan felt Halil should have helped him, should have supported him. Instead he had watched and reported Mehmet’s shortcomings to his father, betraying him and leading to his humiliation.

From then on Mehmet had bided his time. He had learned to keep his thoughts and emotions to himself, to trust no one. He had studied everything: military art, languages, administration, and the arts. He had worked tirelessly so that when he next ruled he would not only equal his father but also exceed him. He would be the greatest Sultan in the history of his people, Allah willing.

His chance came when Murad finally died only two years before, as Mehmet turned 19. Mehmet quickly took power, ordering his baby half brother strangled to assure there would be no succession disputes, and set to organizing his empire. He had learned to be cautious and measured, leaving his father’s counselors and even Halil in power to assist him. From there he had slowly built up a group of supporters. They were young and exclusively Christian converts to Islam. These followers, many of whom now held council positions, were not nearly as powerful as the old guard, but they were gaining ground. They were the future, if Halil did not interfere.

Halil. His father’s Grand Vizier and now his own. He had always treated Mehmet with condescending politeness. He was powerful, so powerful that Mehmet could not easily remove him. So powerful it was possible he could remove Mehmet in favor of a cousin or other relative. Mehmet hated him above all people in the world, but he could not simply replace him. He needed Halil, at least for now, and Halil knew it.

This dilemma was the primary reason for Mehmet’s nighttime wanderings. He needed time away from the palace. Time to think and work out a solution to the problem. How could he free himself from Halil without losing power in the process? He could simply order Halil executed, but would the order be followed or would it be his own head sitting on a pole? The elders and religious leaders all respected and listened to Halil. Only the young renegades, the Christian converts who owed their positions to Mehmet were loyal to him. If Halil was able to rally the old guard to him, Mehmet had no doubt that the result would be a life or death dispute.

Mehmet needed to find a cause that could rally the people to him. The conversations he had heard night after night told him this same thing. The people felt that his father was a great leader, and that he was not. If he could gain the people’s confidence, then he would not need Halil, and the other elders would follow his lead.

Mehmet knew the solution. He knew exactly what would bring the people to his side, and what would indeed make him the greatest Sultan in the history of the Ottoman people.

The solution however was a great gamble. His father and father’s fathers had conquered huge tracts of territory in Anatolia and then in Europe, primarily at the expense of the Greeks. Mehmet intended to propose something even more audacious, to conquer the one place that his ancestors had failed to take. If he succeeded he would win the adoration of his people and would be able to deal with Halil and any others who might oppose him. If he failed . . .

The Sultan eventually made his way back near the palace, to the home of his closest friend, Zaganos Pasha. Zaganos, the youngest brother of Mehmet’s father in law, had converted to Islam at age 13, and was Mehmet’s trusted general and friend. He was the most prominent member of the upstart Christian converts that made up the Sultan’s support base.

Zaganos was up, even at this late hour, and embraced his friend, showing him in and ordering apple tea from his servants. Zaganos was shorter and stockier than Mehmet, a powerful middle-aged man in the prime of his life. He had receding dark brown hair. A long scar cut across his forehead and down over his left eye. He looked on Mehmet with smiling eyes extending in to crow’s feet. He smiled like a proud uncle or father.


Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Historical Fiction

Rating – PG

More details about the author and the book

Connect with  James Shipman on Facebook & Twitter


Nobody Has to Know by Frank Nappi @FrankNappi

Nobody Has To Know, Frank Nappi’s dark and daring new thriller, tells the story of Cameron Baldridge, a popular high school teacher whose relationship with one of his students leads him down an unfortunate and self-destructive path. Stalked through text-messages, Baldridge fights for his life against a terrifying extortion plot and the forces that threaten to expose him. NHTK is a sobering look into a world of secrets, lies, and shocking revelations, and will leave the reader wondering many things, including whether or not you can ever really know the person you love.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Thriller

Rating – PG-13

More details about the author

Connect with Frank Nappi on Facebook & Twitter


Monday, October 28, 2013

In Love With My Best Friend by Sheena Binkley



How did my life get so complicated? One minute, I, Camille Anderson, was living a pretty normal life in which nothing ever happened to me, and the next I'm practically being hauled away from the premier wedding venue in Houston, The Corinthian, by security because of my sudden outburst to the groom.

I should have known I was setting myself up for disaster, but I had to do it. I had to tell my best friend that I'd been in love with him since I was thirteen.

I really didn't expect the scene to unfold the way it did, especially while Trevor was getting married, but I couldn't hold my feelings in much longer. I felt he was making a terrible mistake, because he was marrying the wrong woman. He should have been marrying me.

I guess I should backtrack to when Trevor and I first met. It was seventeen years ago, when the Williams family first moved into the house next to ours. I was outside waiting for my friend Tia Simmons to come by when I first noticed Trevor. He was absolutely gorgeous as he stepped out of his family's SUV. He had that "boy next door" look, with wavy black hair and smooth ivory skin. He looked over at me and gave me a huge grin, which I greatly returned.

After that day, not only did we become friends, but our parents became great friends as well. We always went by each other's homes for dinner or for game night (until we were too old to appreciate hanging out with our parents on a Friday night).

We were practically inseparable during our high school years, and many of our friends thought we would eventually get married and have lots of kids. When anyone mentioned that to Trevor, he would shrug it off and say, "We're just friends, and it will stay that way until the day we die." Usually those words would tug at my heartstrings, but being the shy person I am, I never let my feelings show.

As we went to college, Trevor and I went into the same major, public relations. That was when he met Chelsea Parker, who was also my roommate. At first I liked Chelsea because she was basically a sweet person, but when she set her sights on Trevor, I quickly disliked her. Not because she took Trevor away from me, but because she became a different person.

If only I could go back to four weeks ago, or even seventeen years ago, I would be with the man I loved...


Four weeks ago....

"I don't know why you dragged me to this," I said as I looked at my friend Tia. The two of us were inside the Aventine Ballroom of Hotel Icon waiting for our friend Trevor and his fiancée, Chelsea, to arrive for their engagement and welcome home party. The two had announced their engagement to everyone a while back when Trevor was visiting his parents before going back to Dallas. Not only did he announce his engagement, but he also said that he had accepted a new position at a prestigious PR firm and was moving back to Houston. Although I was happy that my best friend was moving back, I was not thrilled that he was getting married.

"For once, why can't you be happy for Tre? He and Chelsea are finally getting married."

I gave Tia an evil stare as I looked toward the revolving door to the ballroom.

"You know how I feel about Trevor and Chelsea getting married."

"Oh please, Cam, when are you going to get past the fact that Trevor found someone? I told you to admit your feelings to him, but being the person you are, you decided not to."

"What's that supposed to mean?"

"You felt you would have been rejected if you told Trevor your true feelings."

"If I remember correctly, in high school when Charles asked him why we never hooked up, he said, and I quote, 'We're just friends.'"

Tia rolled her eyes at me and started to stare at the door as well. This was not the first time we'd had this conversation about my feelings for Trevor, so I'm pretty sure Tia was tired of hearing it.

Tia was my other best friend and the complete opposite of me. While I was quiet and reserved, Tia was wild and carefree. She always did what she wanted and didn't care about the consequences. People always thought we were sisters, with our caramel-colored complexion and long, dark-brown hair. But that was where the similarities ended. I looked down at my black sequin dress that went above my knees, wondering if I was dressed appropriately for the occasion; but as I looked at the hot-pink dress Tia was sporting, I figured my outfit was perfect.

"So how are things between you and Eric?"

"Finished; I broke up with him a couple of days ago."

"I'm assuming because he's not Trevor? Cam, you have got to move on."

I sighed as I noticed two figures coming through the door. I started to breathe slowly as I watched my friend walk in with his fiancée. Trevor always was attractive, but tonight he looked really handsome in a dark blue suit, white shirt, and blue and white striped tie. His black, wavy hair was cut short, bringing out his beautiful brown eyes. He walked hand in hand with Chelsea, the woman I wish I'd never met, who was positively glowing in an ivory-colored empire dress. Her reddish brown hair was pulled into a tight ponytail and her makeup was flaw- less. Although I was completely jealous of Chelsea, I had to admit the two made a stunning couple.

Tia gave me a frown.

"You OK?"

"I'm cool. Let's just get this over with."

While the crowd of family and friends were clapping and whistling for the happy couple, all I could do was just stand in my place, looking at Trevor as if he was the only person in the room. He gave me a smile that showed the deep dimples on each of his cheeks. As he went to greet a couple of his family members, I took a deep breath to control any tears from flowing.

I shouldn't have come tonight.



"Why did we plan a huge engagement party? Everyone knows we're engaged," I asked my fiancée, Chelsea, as we were walking hand in hand down the corridor inside Hotel Icon.

"Sweetie, I just wanted everyone to celebrate in our happiness and what better way than a huge party?"

I sighed as I continued to walk, not realizing how frustrated I was becoming.

Chelsea was the love of my life. I instantly knew I wanted to marry her when I first laid eyes on her in Camille's dorm room. The two were roommates their junior year at University of Houston, which was great for me, considering I was able to see my best friend and my girlfriend at the same time. Although Camille and I were really good friends, I got the sense that something had been bothering her since I'd been dating Chelsea. Call me crazy, but it seemed as if Camille was jealous of our relationship. I hope not, because Chelsea loves Camille and considers her a good friend.

As we walked into the ballroom, everyone from our family and our friends were clapping and cheering for our arrival. We started to wave at everyone as we entered. Once I turned my head toward the center of the room, I had to stop and admire the person staring straight at me. My heart jolted several beats at the beauty who was giving me a dazzling smile. Camille Anderson had always been a beautiful woman, from her caramel-colored skin to her deep chocolate eyes; she definitely stood out in a crowd.

Just looking at her long hair flowing around her face and the black dress that hugged her curves in all the right places made me feel sort of embarrassed, because I shouldn't have been looking at her in that way. I always considered her my best friend and nothing more, so why was I looking at her differently now?

Chelsea turned her attention to me, wondering what was wrong.

"Is everything OK?"

I suddenly realized I was staring a little too long as I turned to Chelsea.

"I'm fine," I said as I squeezed her hand.

I gave Camille a huge grin as I walked over to talk to a nearby guest. I snuck another peek at her; she was talking to our friend Tia near the bar. I don't know what was going on with me, but hopefully this feeling I was having about my best friend would go away soon.

That's if I want it to.

In Love With My Best Friend

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Contemporary Fiction

Rating – PG13

More details about the author

Connect with Sheena Binkley on Twitter


#AmReading - WILD JUSTICE (Beaumont Brides) by Liz Fielding @lizfielding

Wild Justice by Liz Fielding


Betrayed by a lover, her career in ruins, Fizz Beaumont devotes all her energy to restoring Broomhill Bay pier, using the old theatre as the home for the radio station that is her life.
The arrival of tycoon Luke Devlin, who has taken over her major sponsor, threatens not just her radio station but -- as he offers her a lesson in passion which promises to set the skies ablaze -- everything she holds dear.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Birth of an Assassin by Rik Stone @stone_rik

Otto’s mind takes him back to finding his mother at the Serbsky Institute.

Inmates had jittered and made signs at him as he made his way through the corridors. “Please help me,” he heard from some and, “They have me here because of my political beliefs,” from others. They’d reached out to him as he passed, and his insides had quaked. With the stench of piss and shit everywhere, revulsion filled him. But he’d felt no compassion for these people. He hadn’t given a fuck about them. Only his mother mattered.

“This way,” the nurse had said. “She’s through here.”

He found her in a large open room. She sat on the only piece of furniture in it. The chair was pushed back against the wall and she rocked slightly, staring blankly into nothingness. Spittle leaked from her mouth and she was barely recognizable as the woman he loved. Her long, luxurious, oily-black hair had been shaven to the skin. Her teeth had somehow been removed and her formerly full face had caved in because of it. Like a corpse, she was yellowed and sunken. Only 47 years old and she looked twice that. He’d wished he hadn’t found her and cried bitterly – in front of those sadistic bastards that called themselves nurses.

More like prison guards. And in reality, that’s what they were. Soviet dissidents ended up in places like Serbsky, out of harm’s way. In mental hospitals where they could be abused and broken. Somewhere to extinguish credibility. He’d seen those inmates beaten, teeth punched or kicked from their faces. And if they still didn’t bow to the might of the people, enforced lobotomy wasn’t unheard of as a final step.

With desperation, he’d hoped his mother hadn’t suffered such cruelty.


And now, somehow, she’d made it through to 60. Why, oh why had she lasted this long? All those years, and still she rocked on that old wooden chair and stared at nothing. How could life be this cruel?

He remembered the first time he’d visited the asylum in full Spetsnaz uniform. After calling several of the nurses together, he said, “I know you all have military connections. On that basis, I won’t explain this uniform. Each of you has some sort of responsibility to my mother. The good news is you’re about to receive an extra income. The bad news: if you don’t look after my mother properly and see she gets the kind of care and nourishment she needs, I may have to call on my KGB colleagues. I hope we all understand what that could mean.”

Memories dissolved as he entered the large open room. On his instructions, her hair had been left to grow. But now it was too long and no one had shown it a comb. Still she rocked, gazing into nothingness with the expression of a lunatic on her face.

The burly warder turned to leave but Otto grabbed his arm. “We have an agreement. Next time I come here, I expect my mother to be presentable. Look at her, her hair hasn’t had attention for who knows how long. She needs a bath and a change of clothes. She looks like she’s just puked down them.”

“I err…,” the nurse spluttered with a voice too high for his size.

“Fuck you and your errs. Why do I pay you people so much? I’ll say this once. If I’m not satisfied with the way she looks next time I come, I’ll personally see to it that you have teeth to match hers. And each time after that, I’ll take you a step further down that road. Clear enough?”

“Yes, Captain. I’ll see to it myself.”

The nurse left and Otto looked at his mother. His heart brimmed. The only woman he’d ever loved – could ever love. He got down on his honkers, and took her hand. No sign of recognition, but at least she didn’t pull away.

“Hello, Mother, how are you today?”

Birth of an Assassin

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Thriller, Crime, Suspense

Rating – R

More details about the author

Connect with Rik Stone on Facebook & Twitter


Saturday, October 26, 2013

The Color Pink by Parker Paige


Can wearing the color pink attract true love?

That is the question Summer Jones intends to answer.

In her early thirties, Summer Jones thought that she had found the perfect man, the man she planned to marry until she learned that he still had feelings for his first love. Now, at age thirty-five, Summer is ready to fall in love again. After she hears that wearing the color pink can attract true love, she sets out to do just that–and finds more than just true love.

Follow Summer as she journeys into the world of color magic and find out how she uses that magic to help her choose between one man from her past and another man who is destined to become her future.

This romantic drama serves up something fun and sexy, proving that the road to love can be paved with many painful lessons and memorable moments. It’s a story about paying attention to your past so that you don’t always have to repeat it.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Romance

Rating – PG-13

More details about the author

Connect with Parker Paige on Twitter


Birth of an Assassin by Rik Stone @stone_rik

Birth of an Assassin

Set against the backdrop of Soviet, post-war Russia, Birth of an Assassin follows the transformation of Jez Kornfeld from wide-eyed recruit to avenging outlaw. Amidst a murky underworld of flesh-trafficking, prostitution and institutionalized corruption, the elite Jewish soldier is thrown into a world where nothing is what it seems, nobody can be trusted, and everything can be violently torn from him.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Thriller, Crime, Suspense

Rating – R

More details about the author

Connect with Rik Stone on Facebook & Twitter


Friday, October 25, 2013

The Photo Traveler (The Photo Traveler Series) by Arthur J. Gonzalez


I can’t ask for a better day to be out shooting. Man, what a view. Something about how the sun’s rays press against the faint distant outline of the mountains. Sick! If it can seem so dominating from all the way over here, I can only imagine what it must feel like up close. I don’t know. It just always kind of does something to me.

I know, I know. Lame, right? But trust me, if you lived in the hellhole I live in, anytime alone is sacred. You start to appreciate all these little not-so-particular things. Yeah—even the outline of the mountains.

Carefully, I focus the lens on my Canon 7D to capture the effect of the clouds drifting across the peaks of Mt. Rose and get my shot. A few seconds later, the sunlight dims. I hadn’t realized it was so late. I glance at my watch, wondering what’s taking Melinda so long. She promised to pick me up by five, even though I knew that would mean five-thirty. It’s five-forty-five.

I call her on my cell. It rings four times, then goes to voicemail. “Come on, Mel!” I mutter. “It’s getting late!”

I’ve had a good day so far, probably because I’ve been alone for most of it, and I really don’t want another confrontation with Jet. I can still taste the faint copper tinge of blood at the corner of my mouth where he split my lip the last time around. Two days ago.

I hit redial. Straight to voicemail. “Dammit, Mel!”

I tell myself to breathe, but my anxiety is really starting to kick in. Sweat is beading on my forehead and my heart is jolting in my chest. Why does she always have to be so impossible? I don’t get it.

The moment I hear the loud thrum of an engine roaring up the dirt road, I jump up from the boulder I’ve been perched on. It’s about damn time!

She screeches up to me in her new, cherry-red Mini Cooper and slams on the brakes. I dodge around to the passenger side. Grab the door handle. It’s locked.

“Mel!” I shout. “Open up!”

But she’s sitting behind the wheel pretending not to hear me. Eyes glued to her phone, purple nails tapping out a text message. With a tiny smirk on her glossed-up lips.

I hit the window with my fist. “Stop messing around! Jet’s gonna be pissed!”

She finishes her text, sends it … and adjusts the rearview mirror so she can check out the jet-black curls at her temples. She still hasn’t given me one look. Is she really serious right now?

I pound at the window again, as hard as I can. “Open up, dammit!” My anxiety is turning into rage. And rage is something Jet’s modeled for me only too well over the years, ever since he and his first wife, Leyla, took me in as a foster kid. Mel was just six at the time, but “my sister,” which she became after they finally adopted me, was a full-fledged brat from Day One, and she’s only gotten worse.

My fist hurts. I’m afraid of what Jet will do when we get back, since he ordered me to be home by six so I can start dinner.

But as far as Mel’s concerned, I might as well not be there. I can’t control it any longer. I take a step back, lift my knee, and kick the passenger door with all my strength. The hollow metal frame vibrates against the sole of my shoe. Mel’s prized car now has a six-inch dent right in the middle of the passenger door.

I guess that got her attention. Her mouth is hanging open. For a moment, she’s so astonished that she can’t speak. She swings her door open and charges around to the passenger side.

“MY CAR!” she screams, staring at the dent. “Are you crazy?!”

“Why couldn’t you just open up?” I yell back.

“Gavin, you’re an asshole! I was just messing with you! You’re never gonna learn to use your head, are you?”

“Go to hell!”

She goes still, then raises her eyebrows with an “Oh, really?” expression. Then she hauls off and slams her fist into the right side of my face. All I can feel is the large stone of her ring jabbing into my cheek. She stalks back to the driver’s side with a wicked smirk creasing her lips and snaps, “You can walk home!”

She slides behind the wheel, slams the door, and peels off so hard and fast that the car kicks up a stinging cloud of gravel and asphalt dust all over me.

She can’t be serious. But as the Mini disappears around the first bend in the road, I realize that she is.

* * *

Photo Traveler

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Young Adult Science Fiction

Rating – PG

More details about the author and the book

Connect with Arthur J. Gonzalez on Facebook & Twitter


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Author Interview – Molly D. Campbell


This is an interview between “The New York Now” show and Mr. Fingal Strafer, successful prosecuting attorney at the prominent law firm, Strafer, Bangs, Stiffney and Shultz. Mr. Strafer has successfully prosecuted over one hundred cases without a single loss. (Cameras zoom in on the craggy Strafer, and Melanie Lusk, star reporter, wearing a sharkskin business suit and five-inch pumps.)

NYN: Mr. Strafer, how did you come to practice law, and why did you choose to become a prosecuting attorney?

FS: It’s pretty straightforward, actually. I was the nerdy child of two rather scatterbrained artists, who dressed me in unusual clothing and sent me to public school, where I was bullied from the age of seven. I soon learned that a quick wit and good sneakers were my best defense. I hated those who dominated my world with violence, and vowed to do something about it when I grew up. So I have.

NYN: So you target bullies?

FS:  I target those who assert power over others by putting them down. I have found that bullies usually grow up to do something unlawful during the pursuit of their power plays. I just make sure that they don’t get away with it.

NYN:  Do you ever come across female bullies?

FS: Of course. Women are just as fond of being in control of those weaker than they are as males. Women just use a different set of tools. Men commit crimes such as fraud, robbery, torture, and murder. Women do those things, but more often they are guilty of slander, sacrificing those who help them climb the success ladder, and ruining other people’s marriages.

NYN:  You sound a little bitter.

FS: I have been married four times. But only three of my wives were bitches. One died.

NYN:  How do you prepare for a tough case?

FS: I stay in shape physically. I like to run, and I generally do around thirty miles a week. I don’t drink while on a case, and I keep my mind sharp by studying codes and encryption. I love to write in code, and to code-break. Let’s just say I don’t like secrets.

NYN: (Clears throat) That is an interesting hobby. Do you have any other interests outside of those? What do you do for fun?

FS: I have sex with women. Other than that, I can’t think of anything. Well, I do enjoy chess.

NYN:  (Gulps) Ok then. (Shifts in her seat, and uncrosses her legs)  What was your most difficult case?

FS: About ten years ago, we prosecuted a man for running a Ponzi scheme. He had convinced a group of retired people that if they gave him their money, he would make sure that they had visitors every day at their nursing homes. At first, it was wonderful, but then the old people started dying. Their families, who up to this time had felt relieved that their aging parents had stopped calling them, discovered that entire estates had been engulfed and disappeared, and the shit hit the fan. We sent the guy to prison for twenty years. I tried to stipulate that he get no visitors, but failed. (He smirks)

NYN: (Leaning backwards just a bit in her seat) Interesting. Are you working on anything right now that you can share with us?

FS:  I am not able to say much. But it will make headlines. I can only say that if you have a dog, and you use a dog walking service, you should be careful.

NYN:  I see. (Raises eyebrows at camera two)

FS: Dogs are disappearing. That’s all I can say.

NYN: Goodness. Well, what a relief to know that you are working on this! Thank you for talking with us today. (Shuffles the papers in her lap)

FS: Do you have a dog?

NYN:  (Shifts in chair uncomfortably, and adjusts skirt) Again, thanks. We will be looking forward to hearing about your next case, and I congratulate you on your fine work.

FS: I used to have a dog but he died. (Sniffs audibly and leans forward, brushing against Melanie’s thigh with his hand) I love dogs. Just love dogs. (Sighs dramatically).

NYN: That’s a shame. (Blinks rapidly) And now, we go to London, where Dan Strank is reporting live about the latest financial crisis.

FS: Yeah, my dog’s name was “Slinky.” (Sniffs again, and wipes one eye)

NYN: (Whispering urgently) Cut, and that’s a wrap!

FS: (As production assistants lead him out) He had a little red bone….

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Fiction / Short Stories

Rating – PG13

More details about the author & the book

Connect with Molly Campbell on Facebook & Twitter


Author Interview – Jim Musgrave

Is there anyone you’d like to acknowledge and thank for their support?

My publicist and full-time “Madame,” (inside joke) Ms. Jennifer Perry.

Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you?

It is vital to get exposure and target the right readers for your writing, tell us about your marketing campaign?

Tell us about your new book? What’s it about and why did you write it?

I wrote this trilogy because I wanted to get into the Steampunk genre.  Therefore, the first three books in the Detective Pat O’Malley historical mysteries bring my sleuth ever closer to meeting the main adversaries, the Steam City Pirates.  Technically, only the third novel, Jane the Grabber, features an authentic Steampunk villain, but all of the novels do feature elements present in the genre and aficionados will appreciate them as well.  I hope my marketing campaign will introduce new readers to this interesting genre of fiction, so I can gain a following all my own.  Please read my blog post on this topic.

Do you have an organized process or tips for writing well? Do you have a writing schedule?

Writers can watch for my daily “Sweet Writing Tweets.”

What do you hope people will take away from your writing? How will your words make them feel?

I hope my readers will enjoy learning about history as they are entertained.  I spend many, many hours on historical research for accuracy.  I weave it within the plot like a fine tapestry, and the result (hopefully) should be an overall feeling of satisfaction by the reader.

Jim Musgrave

Here are all three suspenseful mysteries in one book!

Forevermore, the first mystery, was a #2 bestseller in Amazon’s Historical Mystery category. It has received outstanding reviews from readers, and it establishes Pat O’Malley as a detective sleuth par excellence. The second mystery, Disappearance at Mount Sinai, continues the development of the characters amidst an excellent caper. The third mystery, Jane the Grabber, plunges O’Malley into the middle of the Steampunk world, and it marks a turning point in the novels to come.

Forevermore Synopsis:

“Musgrave mixes accurate history with a spell-binding plot to create an amazing who-done-it! Watch for more Pat O’Malley Mysteries.”

In post Civil War New York City, Detective Pat O’Malley is living inside Poe’s Cottage in the Bronx. O’Malley is haunted by Poe one night, and the detective finds a strange note. As a result, O’Malley decides to prove that Edgar Allan Poe did not die in Baltimore from an alcoholic binge but was, instead, murdered. O’Malley quickly becomes embroiled in a “cold case” that thrusts him into the lair of one of the most sinister and ruthless killers in 1865 New York City.

Jim Musgrave’s “Forevermore” is a quick read in four acts that will keep your mind razor sharp trying to solve the mystery of Poe’s murder. Pat O’Malley must first find out how to become intimate with females before he can discover the final clue in this puzzle of wits, murder and romance.

Disappearance at Mount Sinai Synopsis:

What if the anti-Semites, racists, and terrorists wanted the final revenge following the Civil War? How do you stop them from committing the worst atrocity?

It’s 1866 in New York City. Civil War Vet and Detective Pat O’Malley’s biggest case returns him to the deep, dark South to search for the kidnapped wealthiest inventor and entrepreneur in America. But the widening gyre of anti-Semitism and racism pulls him down into the pit of hell itself. Disguised as an Oxford England Professor, O’Malley infiltrates the anti-Semites’ group and travels with his partners, Becky Charming and his father, Robert, down to a Collierville, Tennessee mansion.

At the crux of this case are a Jewish father and his five-year-old son, Seth. They have developed a unique bond that relies on Jewish folklore and a belief that they are Mazikeen, half-angel and half-human, born from the loins of Adam’s strange female cohorts during the 130 years he was banished from the Garden. Will O’Malley find Dr. Mergenthaler before it’s too late? What does this world-wide eugenics group have planned for the mongrel races? Read Jim Musgrave’s Disappearance at Mount Sinai, the second mystery in the series of Pat O’Malley Mini-Mysteries.

Jane the Grabber Synopsis:

What was it like before women were given rights to determine their own destinies? How was abortion and birth control used in the 1860s? What happens to a society when the last sexual taboo is permitted? Find out in the third mystery in the Pat O’Malley Historical Steampunk Mystery Series, Jane the Grabber.

Buy Now @ Amazon @ Createspace

Genre – Historical Steampunk Mystery

Rating – PG13

More details about the author

Connect with  Jim Musgrave on Facebook & Twitter


$250 gift card giveaway

Christoph Paul – My Mom Won’t Read My Book

My Mom Won’t Read My Book

by Christoph Paul

My mom won’t read my book “The Passion of The Christoph”

I wish it was something moving & heartfelt like she was blind & there is not a braille Kindle we can afford, but its nothing noble like that; no, she just she doesn’t want to read about her son working at a porn store or meeting a French girl who liked to do sexual things to birds (when she kissed me I thought I caught the bird flu–seriously, freaked me the hell out.)

No, my mom got her taste of my life when I had to work on Thanksgiving & she called me at the porn store to overhear me selling anal lube to man who compared what he was going to do to his mistress to stuffing turkeys.

Nope, not her cup of team, especially, when her son is involved; she is also more of a Danielle Stelle reader and my closest thing with romance is the letter I wrote to the Stripper I met at Teaser’s.

But in all seriousness, it is strange to create something you love and are so proud of but you can’t show it to your mom.

Oh, my lonely little bastard book, yet, I’m so proud of him? Her? It? (I do talk about Tranny’s a lot). Yes, this little test tube of literary punk rock is my pride and joy.

Every dick joke, was like an inch it grew–chapter by chapter.

The tales of rehab and military school where I lived with men named Crack Head Pete who liked to pretend to make a mop give him fellatio was the skin and sparkly hair of my baby…but for my mom it was a reminder that I should have joined more clubs and she should have searched my room more for pot.

All these errors turned into some damn hilarious stories to everyone but my mom. My comedy is her tragedy, but if it makes a buck and writing about it makes her son happy she can live with it–she just can’t read it.

To make it up to her I’m working on a ‘fiction’ YA book. She said it should be like Nicholas Sparks. So far it is going the love story route, very ‘Sparkian’…just with lots and lots of dick jokes…

Sorry Mom.

With a biting sense of humor, sarcasm, and a unique worldview, Christoph Paul’s “The Passion of the Christoph” exposes readers to an unprecedented commentary on every topic. Paul’s take on sex, religion, politics, sports, to name a few, will leave you transformed as you absorb this insightful compilation of satiric and hysterical essays.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Humor / NonFiction

Rating – NC17

More details about the book

Connect with Christoph Paul on Facebook & Twitter


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

#Free - Night of the Purple Moon by Scott Cramer @cramer_scott


Abby, 13, is looking forward to watching the moon turn purple, unaware that deadly bacteria from a passing comet will soon kill off older teens and adults. She must help her brother and baby sister survive in this new world, but all the while she has a ticking time bomb inside of her--adolescence.

"Cramer creates a picture of our world that's both frightening and inspiring in this heartfelt story that both young adults and adults can enjoy.A heartwarming but not overly sentimental story of survival." KIRKUS REVIEWS

"Outrageous and completely 'out of the box'."
"Three words: Gripping. Palpable. Well-developed." WORD SPELUNKING review blog

Buy Now @ Amazon & B&N & iBooks & Kobo

Genre - Science fiction

Rating – PG-13

More details about the author

Connect with Scott Cramer on Facebook & Twitter

Colony East (The Toucan Trilogy #2) by Scott Cramer @cramer_scott

Colony East
When the bacteria that killed most of world’s adults undergo a deadly mutation, 15-year-old Abby must make the dangerous journey to Colony East, an enclave of scientists and Navy personnel who are caring for a small group of children. Abby fears that time is running short for the victims, but she’s soon to learn that time is running out for everyone outside Colony East. (Parental discretion advised for readers 13 and under)
Colony East will be specially priced at $2.99, 60 percent off the regular price.
Night of the Purple Moon (Book 1 of the Toucan Trilogy) is free.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre - Science fiction
Rating – PG-13
More details about the author
Connect with Scott Cramer on Facebook & Twitter

Monday, October 21, 2013

Guinevere: On the Eve of Legend by Cheryl Carpinello

Chapter 1

The Hunt

Guinevere stared into the shadows along the edge of the forest. She could hear Cedwyn shifting from foot to foot beside her, unable to stand still. She sighed, the bow made of sturdy pine in her hand growing heavier like her heart. Her thirteenth Birth Day was in a few days, but she wasn’t excited. Birth Days were supposed to be fun, but not this year. Not for her, not for a princess.

She frowned as Cedwyn adjusted the leather quiver of arrows on his back again. Sometimes, like today, her patience with the seven-year-old was short.



“But ...”


She stamped her boot on the ground, her displeasure clearly showing.

“Cedwyn,” she snapped. “What is so important that you can’t be quiet?”

“I’m hungry, and the bottoms of my trousers are wet. Can’t we go back to the castle?” His face showed his confusion at her tone.

Guinevere realized that she shouldn’t have directed her anger at Cedwyn. It wasn’t his fault. Glancing down at her own clothes, she saw the bottom of her green ankle-length tunic wet with the morning dew. Her stomach chose that moment to begin grumbling. It started as a low vibration but grew louder as if it hadn’t been fed in days. Cedwyn heard it and started giggling. He tried to smother the sound by covering his mouth with his small hand, but he was too late.

Trying to keep from laughing also, Guinevere shook her head. “How are we ever going to shoot a rabbit with all this noise?” She reached down and tousled his blond hair to let him know that she was not serious and to apologize for her crossness. “Let’s try for just ten minutes longer. Then if we find nothing, we’ll go back. Is that all right?”

Cedwyn shook his head, not wanting to make any further noise. She let her eyes move across the blue sky. The English summer sun had barely reached above the far hills when they had first arrived at the forest. Now, it was well on its way in its climb toward the dinner hour, and they hadn’t even had a proper breakfast yet. Cedwyn’s mum was sure to be upset that they had been gone so long.

“Come on,” he whispered. “The only creatures we’ve seen moving have been badgers and Cornish hens. We could of had five bloody hens by now.”

“I told you, it’s good luck to bag a rabbit on the eve of your thirteenth Birth Day,” Guinevere informed him.

Cedwyn studied her face, unsure if she was telling the truth or not. Then his blue eyes widened, and he grabbed her arm as she turned to continue hunting. “Wait a minute! You promised to help me bag a rabbit on the eve of my tenth Birth Day. You said that was lucky!”

She turned to him, her balled fists on her slim hips. “You need to listen closer when I talk to you. I explained the difference be- tween boys and girls. Boys have to seek luck on the eve of their tenth and fifteenth Birth Days. Since girls are naturally luckier than boys, they only have to seek luck once, on the eve of their thirteenth Birth Day.”

Cedwyn eyed her suspiciously, and then his eyes lit up.

“But I thought that the eve was the night before. Your Birth Day isn’t until the day after tomorrow.”

“That’s true, but the eve of something can also be anytime close to the day.”

“Are you sure?”


Buy Now @ Amazon @ Smashwords

Genre - Arthurian Legend

Rating – G

More details about the author and the book

Connect with Cheryl Carpinello on Facebook & Twitter & Goodreads


Friday, October 18, 2013

Accountability Leadership by Di Worrall @DiWorrall

Di Worrall

Accountability Leadership Saves Tech Company

In 2005, HCL Technologies was in trouble.

The Delhi-based IT firm was losing market share, as competitors grew by 50% annually.

By 2009, HCL’s president, Vineet Nayar had turned the company around, nearly tripling annual revenues and doubling market capitalisation despite the recession.

Nayar accomplished all this through a top-down culture of accountability, beginning with the leadership qualities of himself—the CEO—and other senior managers.

The Rules Of Accountability Have Changed

Great business leaders understand that acceptance of greater personal accountability and responsibility leads organisations back on the path to success.

But with the evolving nature of 21st century business, the practical steps that go into creating a high performance culture of accountability have become more muddled than ever.

Many organisations have seen temporary improvements, implementing traditional systems of accountability in an attempt to drive high performance in the workplace—only to quickly revert back to their old ways, or worse.

Accountability Leadership Will Teach You:

  • What it really takes to lead a high performance culture of accountability
  • Why so many of today’s employees avoid personal accountability and responsibility like the plague, and how to reverse that trend
  • How to sustain great performance through inspiring feedback, feed-forward and follow-through
  • What an accountability plan is, how to create one, and why it’s considered the “secret weapon” behind successful business transformation

Filled with real world case studies and straightforward, easy to digest research, Accountability Leadership offers practical solutions that are direct, engaging, fast, cost-effective, proven, and easy to implement...

Immediate, Concrete Solutions You’ll Take Away From This Book Include:

  • How to transform the “dark side” of accountability into a positive force for change
  • Why carrots and sticks no longer work—and what they’ve been replaced with
  • How to create compelling consequences that inspire people to perform at their best, and achieve the ultra productive workstate known as “flow”
  • Crack the code of high accountability conversations, turning confrontation into a productive and positive opportunity

Accountability Leadership Also Sheds Light On Topics Like...

  • How negativity bias covertly sabotages your feedback loop with your employees
  • The optimal ratio for positive to negative comments in feedback
  • The right amount of autonomy to give employees—without overdoing it
  • What lack of recognition is really doing to your workforce (hint: it’s staggering)
  • The surprising biochemical effect of praise, and why it cannot fail

Plus, You’ll Also Receive A Special Bonus

Reader’s can claim an exclusive 20-minute podcast interview with top-rated thought leader Marshall Goldsmith, sharing his powerful experiences and groundbreaking ideas on coaching for accountability leadership—absolutely free.

A Personal Message From The Author

Accountability is arguably the number-one issue that makes or breaks leadership performance today. Yet most of us were never taught this critical skill—not by our parents, teachers or business leaders.

The good news is, accountability can be coached.

The ideas in this book draw from extensive research and 25 years experience working with executives to improve performance through high accountability.

These ideas work.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Business, Leadership, Workplace Behaviour, Human Resources, Executive Coaching

Rating – PG

More details about the author

Connect with Di Worrall on Facebook & Twitter


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, October 17, 2013

#Free - Winter’s Wrath by Karen Luellen @LuellenBooks

Winter’s Wrath by Karen Luellen


Tormented by evil.
Haunted by choice.
Searching for redemption.
Lines between good and evil blur as the Winter family fight for survival in Winter’s Wrath: Sacrifice. Book #3 in Winter’s Saga delves into the choices we make and the butterfly effect on the world around us. Meg Winter must cope with the caveats of her evolved gift or be consumed by them. Her family and friends watch helplessly as she struggles to find herself, learn what is worth fighting for and let go of things beyond her control. Will she break free of her own fears before it’s too late or let her insecurities rule them all?

Monday, October 14, 2013

Brie McGill – Why Independent Publishing Rocks @briemcgill

Why Independent Publishing Rocks
by Brie McGill
WWGD? What would Gutenberg do, if he could log onto Amazon and cruise around for books? (Other than, of course, be redirected to to make a purchase.)
Love them or hate them, ebooks have dramatically reshaped the publishing landscape. I’m a diehard fan of the portable, apocalypse-proof hardbacks, but ebooks speak more to my budget. I only have Kindle for PC, but it has made me want to buy a reader, because I’ve since read a mountain of amazing texts not available in the local big-name bookstores.
When I finished writing my first book, Kain, I attempted to publish traditionally. I vowed to snag an agent. My manuscript was so polished I had to wear sunglasses to read it; I sleuthed the internet for tips like my life depended on it and spent nearly as much time crafting my query as I did my entire novel. I was ready to go!
A girlfriend of mine self-published. It was incomprehensible to me, doing all that marketing by myself. Plus, I didn’t have the guts to go out there, into the wild, all alone, with no one to back me up. And, wasn’t there a rumor that self-publishing “tarnished” one’s reputation, making it more difficult to snag an agent in the future? It’s the rumor that says, “An agent will see that you have self-published, give you the hairy eyeball, and say, ‘Well, why didn’t you come to me in the first place?’”
No one wants the hairy eyeball.
Bubbling with great enthusiasm, I launched a buck-wild querying bonanza. I found every appealing agent in every applicable genre for my book, studied their websites, studied their credentials, studied their blogs, toiled, sweat, and pored night and day over sending them the most graceful personalized introductions on the planet.
One, three, six, seven months later, that swathe of rejection letters came pouring in. It broke my heart, studying all those blogs, only to receive a “dear author” in return.
Now, I’m not railing on agents–I can only imagine the immense amount of work and pressure that comes with the job, wheeling and dealing with the big names. Agents receive something like 200 unsolicited emails every day. That many emails would drive me INSANE!
But this brings me to my point: right now, the publishing landscape is crazy. Bookstores are closing; a smaller environment means increased competition, with less agents willing to take on new authors.
Too bad for new authors!
To persist in an endeavor that would only bring certain heartache felt like clinging to a whimsical boyfriend who was never truly pleased: I sucked it up and went indie.
My neck was on the chopping block: it was up to me to secure my edits, without the help of the time-tested professionals. But I retained creative input on my cover. I stopped worrying about whether or not I needed to censor myself–writing queries felt like a dreadfully stuffy process, and I was not in my element. I realized I look better in my homemade robot suit than a blazer, slacks, and tie.
Traditionally published or not, there is no guarantee any author is ever going to make enough money to quit his day job–but the difference with independent publishing is, no longer do authors require the permission of someone else to at least try.
Ultimately, the entire process of me putting myself out there was rewarding, because it generated an incredible sense of self-empowerment. I started a project, set a goal, and saw it through every step to completion. I didn’t sell a lot of books my first month–I’m still quite new to the scene–but I did manage to pay my telecom bill, which was more than a stack of rejection letters ever did for anyone. I’m not famous, but a few total strangers chose to read my book of their own free will–my little old book, among so many others!–and they loved it.
If you love writing and have the burning need to share your stories, rain or shine–self-publishing might be for you. It takes guts to venture out into the wilderness all alone, especially the first time. But resonating with a readership, however small, is an incredible feeling–especially when it’s your heart and your magic, nothing else, that made it grow. I have so much to communicate and I want to share it now!
And I can. What would Gutenberg do?
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre –  Sci-Fi/Steamy Romance
Rating – R (18+)
More details about the author & the book
Connect with Brie McGill on Facebook  & Twitter

Sunday, October 13, 2013

#Free - The Sunset Prophecy by P.J. Day @PJDayauthor

The Sunset Prophecy by P.J. Day

Amazon Kindle

One fateful evening, Keelen Grant, who spent five of her prettiest and most marketable years trying to make it in Hollywood, finally meets her boss, Thomas Click, an eccentric photographer and gallery owner. The shrewd and mysterious business man offers the struggling actress a choice...but one that comes with a heavy price.
Unsettled by the photographer's proposition, Keelen reconnects with ex-lover and enigmatic artist, Logan Drake, who promptly offers her work of a different kind. But Logan's intentions for keeping Keelen around go further than just give her a helping hand. Indeed, Logan has big plans for Keelen...if only she will accept his offer.
Keelen quickly learns her decisions have a ripple effect on reality. A reality where her own past, the city's past, and the history of those she comes in contact with, are much more complicated and far-reaching than she'd ever imagined.
With a prophecy of untold disaster threatening to surface from the superficial, plastic, and greed-obsessed layers permeating the city, Keelen must choose between two men and two sides. Now, with the fate of millions of lives in her hands, Keelen Grant must take on the role of a lifetime...

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Indiestructible: Inspiring Stories from the Publishing Jungle by Jessica Bell, Melissa Foster, Susan Kaye Quinn, Leigh Talbert Moore, Anne R. Allen, Cindy M. Hogan, Dawn Ius, Michelle Davidson Argyle, Roz Morris


Need motivation and inspiration to self-publish, or sign that contract with an interested small press? Have you done all the research you can, but still feel ambivalent about the idea? “Indiestructible: Inspiring Stories from the Publishing Jungle” brings you the experiences of 29 indie authors—their passions, their insights, their successes—to help you make the leap into indie publishing.

This is not a how-to guide. This is the best of the indie tradition of experienced authors paying forward what they’ve learned, giving you information to help you on your journey. The personal essays in this book will leave you itching to get your work into the hands of readers and experience, first-hand, all the rewards indie publishing has to offer.

100% of proceeds from “Indiestructible” purchases will be donated to

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre –  Non-fiction

Rating – G

More details about the author

Connect with Jessica Bell on FacebookTwitter


Keeper of Reign (Reign Fantasy) by Emma Right


THE LAST THING Jules Blaze thought of before he closed his eyes was how he, how anyone, could undo the curse his people were under. He was in the middle of a dream, a nightmare as far as he was concerned, begging Grandpa Leroy and Grandma Bonnie not to leave, when someone banged on their front door, shaking their entire tree house.

Who’d be crazy enough to disturb them at this hour? He sat up on his bed and cocked his head. His mother’s soft tread tap-tapped on the wood floor.

“Who’s there?” her muffled voice asked, harsh and whispery from sleep.

The banging stopped.

“Erin, open up.” Saul’s voice, gruff and loud, jolted the last fog of sleepiness from Jules. He peered over at his brother sleeping noiselessly in the bunk below him, and quietly slipped down the ladder. On tiptoe he sneaked to the trapdoor opening that led down to the living room where Saul stood dripping from the rain.

“Is everything okay?” Erin said.

“Would I visit now if it were?” Saul said. Then in a gentler voice he added, “I’m sorry. Please, let’s take a seat, Erin.” He nodded at Jules who’d slipped down the pull-down ladder to join them. “Jules.” Jules thought about his father at the war front and swallowed a lump in his throat. Was this why Dad hadn’t sent any word to them for the last months? Because he couldn’t?

Saul held Erin by the arm. He led her to the dining room chairs behind the sofa covered with knitted shawls and afghan throws.

Jules trudged to the window and peered at the branches outside. The arm of the oak tree grew so thick they could easily live in it, although getting up there could be a problem, especially since he was afraid of heights. These days they didn’t even live in stone houses, or even wooden ones, unless living under a tree counted as a wooden home. Elfies lived in trees, or burrowed under rocks, in the forest of Reign.

“Take a seat, Jules.” Saul locked eyes on him for an instant. “I just received word from the riverfront patrol—Leroy and Bonnie’s boat capsized in the storm. They’re searching for the bodies, but it doesn’t look good.”

Erin let out a gasp and brought a fist to her mouth. “No!”

“Boat? How can they be sure it was them?” Jules leaned forward in his chair.

“Some of their belongings floated to shore, and I identified the wreck—the pieces drifted to the bank.”

Erin looked at him blankly.

Saul said, again, “The boat…was a wreck.”

“Boat?” Erin said.

“I’d loaned it to them.”


Saul looked at the ceiling. “They’d wanted to get across to Handover.”

“Handover? That’s preposterous. After telling us never to cross the river and saying how dangerous Handover is?” Erin’s voice sounded angry amidst her sobs.

Saul pushed his chair back and stood. He reached into the cloak of his pocket, brought out a few items and laid them on the dining table. “Some things to remember your folks by.” And with that he turned and stalked back out into the dripping night.

Jules stared at his grandpa’s pocket watch, the green felt hat the old man always wore, especially on damp days, and his grandma’s silk scarf she donned when the wind ruffled her snowy white hair. Erin sobbed more violently, and Jules stood behind his mother’s back, leaned over and hugged her trembling shoulders.

Keeper of Reign

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Young Adult Adventure Fantasy  

Rating – G

More details about the author & the book

Connect with Emma Right on Facebook & Facebook (Keeper of Reign)


Friday, October 11, 2013

Alice Will by Ashley Chappell @AshleyNChappell


With her leaky powers and premature smiting problem, fourteen year-old Trotter was still just trying to get the hang of the demi-godding business when the apocalypse began. In a world where the gods have withdrawn from humanity, leaving mortals bitter toward magic, she finds herself torn between the human and the goddess in her as the world begins to fade away and she becomes the prime suspect. When her search to determine the cause and prove her innocence ends up revolving around a mysterious little girl named Alice, she discovers that not all of the gods had been as distant as they seemed… Now, with everyone against her and the gods fighting amongst themselves, Trotter is on her own to save her world and stop a spiteful god from using Alice to destroy everything.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – YA Fantasy

Rating – PG

More details about the author

Connect with Ashley Chappell on Facebook & Twitter


An Honest Man (the Donkey and the Wall) @J_L_Lawson


It's an Art

“When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.” 

--Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

“Are you getting all this?” asked the stranger after the lingering pause and he straightened his legs. The cat leapt down and padded off after her own business.

“Yes, thank you,” answered the young man promptly, glad that the silence was broken at last and anxious to shift the topic a bit. “So the beginning was when George and Belle had Harry?” the host ventured, still scribbling.

“You missed it by a bit. This story began when Wang Fu Kong, George, committed himself to the journey to a new world, then the trek into the wilderness, and when he finally surrendered to the harsh beauty and rewarding wonder of the natural world in which he found himself.”

“Wait. Are you saying little Harry and his son, or daughter, or whatever, all the way down to Fred Livingson, whenever he lived, is all the same story? So, no one person had an individual beginning or end? That doesn't sound quite fair or right somehow.”

The guest stood up and walked to the door. He looked out into haze of the growing Texas day and the harvested hay fields across the pond, then he thought aloud, “You know, that's an interesting point... like 'What is the tree to the forest?' or, 'Is the story of the river in the melting ice and snow of the mountain?' or...”

“Well, yeah, or 'the chicken and the egg',” added the young man, “But how can you say: 'It begins here!' and not here, or here, or here?” Then he groaned in exasperation at his infirm grasp of what the stranger was getting at.

“The simplest way to answer that is to remind you that humans have the unique capacity to dream and to choose, which stands them in contrast to the rest of the life on this planet. Yet even with that great birthright, so few people develop the ability or make the attempt to swerve even a bit from the whims of the winds of fate or of cause and effect.” He paused, assessed the effect of this last on the young man and continued. “So when on that rare occasion someone commits to a decision made of his own understanding and aspiration, acts on that commitment, and affects the lives of others in a positive way which would not have occurred otherwise... That is a beginning.”

“And it doesn't seem to be ending...” muttered the host not so silently while sharpening his pencil for another round.

“It ends; its life however is mapped, not measured,” offered the guest, “Shall we proceed with your map?” The stranger sat down, and picked up the tale again with a conversation between George and White Feathers.

An Honest Man

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre - Metaphysical/Fantasy/Action Adventure

Rating – G

More details about the author & the book

Connect with J.L. Lawson on Facebook


Thursday, October 10, 2013

#Free Alert – Evergreen @DavidJester

Evergreen by David Jester


Evergreen is the peaceful, idyllic home for a bustling traveler community. It is home to Patrick Ryan, the figurehead of the community; home to Aidan McCleary, Patrick's mentor and friend; home to scores of youngsters and generations of families. But now Evergreen is also home to a sadistic serial killer, someone who is targeting the youngsters of this once peaceful community.
They know the killer lives among them, know that one of their own is tearing this small community apart. They want to deal with it themselves, to track down the killer and deliver their own justice, but can they find him before he rips their home apart?
Evergreen is a serial killer thriller/whodunnit with a macabre and sinister slant. A book not for the faint hearted.

Boundless by Brad Cotton


Best friends Duncan and Ray run a successful bookie business in Phoenix. Outgrowing the life they began in college, the late twenty-something pair set out on the road with a plan to never return. Their trip takes them cross-country with eventful stops in Las Vegas, Omaha, and Niagara Falls. Along their journey they meet several colorful characters and even agree to bring a pretty young girl named Ruby along with them for the ride. Landing in Boston to run an errand for an old friend, the travelers begin to lay roots in an attempt to forge for themselves the life they’d always hoped for. Easier said than done. As romances begin to burgeon, and one of their lives is put in danger, the group quickly discovers that where they are may indeed have little effect on who they are.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Contemporary Fiction/Literary Fiction

Rating – R

More details about the author

Connect with Brad Cotton on Facebook & Twitter


The Kings of Charleston (Vol. 1) - Kat H. Clayton

Dad was getting the better end of this whole insane deal. He had gotten the offer from a longtime friend . . . supposedly. Tyson Roman had been one of Dad’s college classmates, according to his ramblings on the plane. They had been members of the same fraternity and lived in the frat house for two years together. They had pulled off several memorable pranks, which he had described in painstaking detail. Tyson was now a business tycoon in Charleston, with several construction companies to his name. This was the first time I had ever heard of him, and I was pretty sure it was the first time for Mother, too.

A few minutes later, we pulled up to the curb of our new home. Once the car stopped, I put away my headphones and looked out through the darkly-tinted window. Our house was really close to the other houses on the street . . . like, I could literally reach out a window and touch the other house. Palm trees lined the sidewalk, and most of the houses had short iron fences guarding their tiny, well-manicured front lawns. It was a big letdown. I was used to not having a single neighbor within earshot.

There were three imposing porches, one on each level of the house, that ran the length of the house. The exterior was a warm honey color with black decorative shutters. Its front façade reminded me of a grand plantation home from Gone with the Wind. I hated to admit the house was really pretty.

“Isn’t it beautiful?” Dad asked, as he hastily got out of the car. I stepped out onto the street as well, but with less enthusiasm. The air was thick and muggy with humidity. It almost took my breath away. It was just as blistering in Kentucky this time of year, but the air didn’t have the same heavy, salty quality. I could almost taste the ocean on my lips.

Mother and I walked toward the house in a daze. Neither one of us uttered a word as Dad continued to gab away about the house.

“It was built in the late seventeen-hundreds—amazing, right?” He was still cheery, but it was obvious he was looking for a reaction from someone at this point. Mother and I shared the same stubborn quality. We walked in silence, ignoring his attempts to get us talking about how “amazing” all of this was—in reality, it was nothing more than a bad dream.

We reached the front porch, which had a beautiful wood floor that glistened like it was encased in glass. The front door was ornate, with white decorative molding and windows at the top and along both sides.

It was very different from our home in Kentucky, but no less impressive. My mother had extravagant taste and Dad would do anything to please her. When she had complained that the original house had been too small, he had a contractor on hand the next day. The new house had marble floors, mahogany paneling, and gold-plated fixtures throughout its massive structure, which spread across the farm like a miniature White House.

Dad finally reached the front door and unlocked it cautiously. It creaked as he swung it open. A crystal chandelier dangled from the tall ceiling, which cast a tranquil glow across the foyer’s wood floor. I looked to the right of the front door. A dark wood staircase wound up like a mahogany corkscrew to the second floor. A long hallway stretched ahead of us toward a set of frosted glass double doors. I took a few steps toward the left to a set of pocket doors. With a little effort, I pulled them apart and revealed a large formal living room.

I was shocked by all the furniture that was perfectly arranged in the room like a museum exhibit. I walked across the hall and opened another set of pocket doors next to the stair case. They squeaked from disuse, and once again I found furniture in perfect arrangements.

It looked as if someone already lived here and we were the house guests. Everywhere I looked there were ornate furniture, antique wall hangings, and luxurious velvet curtains enveloping both rooms. My mother was not into antiques. I didn’t see any of these things lasting very long.

“I thought that our things were being shipped?” she asked, her jaw tight as she paced between the two adjacent rooms.

After several hurried looks back and forth, she stopped next to a round table placed in the center of the foyer. She touched the large silk flower arrangement on the table and frowned. She jerked her hand away as if she would be infected with some terrible interior designing disease. She crossed her arms over her chest and arched one perfect eyebrow, as if to say, You better have a good explanation.

“Some of them are, but the house came completely furnished. The things already here would match the style of the house much more than our own would. Besides, if we empty out the other house, we won’t have anything to sit on when we visit.”

“Fine,” she responded, pursing her lips. It wasn’t like my mother to give up so easily.

“So, what do you think, Casper?” he asked, avoiding any further confrontation with Mother, who had disappeared into one of the rooms.

“No!” squealed Mother. There must have been more fake flowers. I smiled for the first time since we’d left.

“Do you like it?” Dad stood next to me and nudged my shoulder. I let my guard down, feeling a little bit sorry for him for some strange reason.

“It’s pretty Dad.” He didn’t look convinced. “Really,” I repeated.

He finally smiled and took in a deep breath. “Why don’t you go upstairs and pick out a bedroom? There’s four on the second floor and three on the third.”

I nodded and dutifully made my way up the stairs. The staircase curled up the side of the house. I could imagine all the families who had made their first trek up this very staircase and I was comforted by their lingering spirits—as long as they didn’t show up in the middle of the night. Ghost hunting was not on my bucket list.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – YA / Mystery / Suspense

Rating – PG13 (No sex scenes, some violence)

More details about the author & the book

Connect with Kat H Clayton on Facebook & Twitter