Book Spotlight: Heaven Sent by Tracey Dalziel Bush


Heaven Sent
by Tracy Dalziel Bush
Urban Fantasy
Amazon UK | Smashwords


Professional killer, Lilia West is determined to wreak vengeance on Ramon Blur, the wealthy businessman responsible for the death of her closest friend.

Unfortunately Ramon isn't your run-of-the-mill psychopathic killer and Lilia finds herself engulfed in the dark abyss as Ramon tries to take possession of not only her body, but her soul too. She cries to Heaven for salvation and out of nowhere comes Louis, a dark, sensual being more powerful than any other creature on earth.

But has Louis delivered her from evil or is he more dangerous than Ramon could ever be and if she surrenders to the allure of this enigmatic stranger will she be in danger of losing more than just her life?

Excerpt:

Lilia thrust her hands into her pockets as another shoulder clenching shudder gripped her. It was cold in the shadows and having hardly a stitch on beneath her coat wasn’t helping matters, but needs must.  Her date had specifically requested a tall, vivacious, brunette who wouldn’t object if things got a little rough and for all intents and purposes that was exactly what he was going to get.  She huffed derisively, he was late, but fortunately she had been blessed with the patience of a saint.

Then a haughty, almost wicked smile teased the soft edge of her mouth as she recognised the sure, ever so confident rhythm of his arrogant gait. She drew a deep, contented breath as her gaze drifting across the street to capture his approach.

He climbed the steps to his apartment block stopping midway to exchange pleasantries with a couple she presumed to be neighbours and, despite the man’s efforts to draw her away the woman seemed eager to chat. Lilia found the woman’s flirtatious laughter irritating. Apparently her partner did too as he practically dragged her down the remaining steps.

She thought it funny how those who commit the most heinous of crimes were often envisioned as grotesque, nightmarish fiends that lurk in the shadows waiting to lure their unsuspecting victims to their doom, when in reality they seldom appear different from your average man on the street. Although to be fair, Ramon with his lofty height and Spartan’s physique, not to mention, impeccable dress sense, was far from average. Yet, it was his astonishing good looks that were most deceptive.

Fortunately Lilia wasn’t susceptible to his charm. She’d slain many sexual predators since her crusade began and would undoubtedly slay many more, but none would give her more pleasure than destroying Ramon. Infuriatingly he hadn’t even registered on her radar until he’d made the fatal mistake of taking the life of her closest friend.  And, even though she’d witness the aftermath of many horrific crimes and considered herself hardened to such acts of depravity nothing could have prepared her for what Ramon had done to Gina.

Rage swept through her at the thought, turning her stomach over and leaving a bitter taste in her mouth, but it would serve no purpose to rub salt into such a raw wound especially when she needed to remain focused.  She released a hot, deep breath and pushed the thought away as she stepped back further into the shadows

Ramon stood at the open door for a moment then slowly turned back around, his gaze drifting to the shadows where Lilia stood.  She knew he couldn’t see her yet his penetrating gaze remained eerily locked on her location nonetheless.

For a moment she considered stepping out and greeting him then decided against it, because, despite expecting her, well not her exactly, but an extremely expensive escort with masochistic tastes, Ramon would find it highly suspicions to find her lurking in the dark. She took a deep calming breath and dismissed the notion.

Then he smiled.

Her heart skipped a beat. Two, then began to pound so fiercely that the quickening stole her breath away as she tried to focus on Ramon’s face. Was he smiling at her?! It seemed he was. A cruel, taunting smile that had the hairs on the back of her neck bristling as an icy chill crept up her spine. But she’d be damned if she would heed the infuriating desire to run and hide. The twisted smirk was still on his face as he turned and went inside closing the door behind him with a casual flick of his hand.

She was being over sensitive; highly understandable under the circumstances yet totally unprofessional.  Why the hell couldn’t she just have shot him instead of getting up close and personal?  She huffed derisively, if she shot him she wouldn’t have the pleasure of seeing his face when she told him who she was, wouldn’t get to see the life drain from him when she slid the long, thin blade of her dagger straight through his cold, black heart.

***

Visit the author at www.traceydalzielbush.com


Black Friday Sale & Givewaway: A Shot in the Dark by Jennifer Burrows



BLACK FRIDAY SALE - $0.99! 
A Shot in the Dark - Black Friday Sale PROMO Blitz
By Jennifer Burrows
Romantic Thriller
Date Published: 7/11/2013

Most of the patients that are brought to the trauma bay in the ER remain nameless, and for the most part, faceless.  For Laney Pearson and the rest of the staff, this makes it easier to move past the senseless death and destruction that they see on an almost daily basis.  But all of that changes for Laney when she finds herself trying to pump the life back into a young motorcycle rider who arrives by helicopter more dead than alive.

Skyler Smith has all the makings of the next great motocross rider, right up until he crashes while trying to perform the trick that will secure his future.  From the time his motionless body is lifted off the track, the question becomes not when his next race takes place, but whether he will live to see another day.  And now there is mounting evidence that the tragedy was no accident.

Laney can never envision this boy’s crash and the ensuing investigation will have such an impact on her own life, but in the days that follow, she discovers a life within her she never knew existed.  While the police sort through the mounting evidence from the crash, Laney has to sort through her own feelings for the handsome trauma surgeon that she previously never gave a second thought.  Is he really as charming as he seems, or is there another reality hiding beneath the surface?  And just how long has he been watching her?   

EXCERPT

As he got to the base of the jump, he noticed his front wheel was wobbling. His first instinct was to panic. Instead, he took a deep breath and counted to five to calm himself. All he had to do was make this jump. He knew he could do it. There wasn't a chance he was going to miss it.

As he watched the wheel become persistently looser, doubt filled his mind. This is bad. Maybe I shouldn't do this jump. This could end terribly. Man, you have to do this jump. This is what you have been preparing for. As he went up the jump and started his flip, he saw his front tire fall off in midair. A brief moment of panic surged through his body. He continued on not knowing what else to do as he tried to turn his bike around and land on the back tire. But the surprise of his tire falling off made his timing off. Instead, he landed on the ground with his bike falling on top of him leaving him in complete darkness.

About the Author

Jennifer Burrows

Jennifer is a Registered Nurse, and she holds a Master’s degree in Nursing Administration.  She has 15 years of experience working in the Emergency Room and the Intensive Care Unit of a major trauma center.  While she is equally adept at all facets of patient care, Emergency room nursing is her passion, and is the inspiration for this story.  Currently, she resides in Southern California with her husband and their three amazing boys.  This is her first published novel, with the sequel expected soon.


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Guest Post: Ebooks Have no Soul?

Ebooks Have No Soul
by Annette Gisby


I've been seeing variations of that sentence for a while now on various places on the web. Interestingly enough, I haven't seen it on anything printed, you know, those things that supposedly do have soul.

I grew up in Ireland, storytelling was a way of life. There were always stories going round in my head. As a girl, I had dolls, but with me my dolls were characters in stories which I used the dolls to act out. Gradually as I got older I no longer used my dolls to act out the stories but started writing them down in notebooks with pencil or pen.

One Christmas my parents got me a manual typewriter so I started writing my stories on that. It had a strange quirk, that typewriter. Despite being new, the letter 'S' never worked properly, it always appeared as subscript rather than in the main body of the text. By the time I was considering getting work published professionally I knew that manuscript pages typed with the letter 'S' always appearing as subscript was not going to cut it, despite it being an interesting quirk. My first ever wages were spent on an electronic typewriter which worked perfectly out of the box.

I graduated next to an electronic word processor shortly after my husband and I were married. It was a bulky thing which only did word-processing and nothing else and to save work you needed 3in floppy disks. At the time we bought it we had no idea that most word-processors and personal computers at the time usually had 31/2 inch disks, not 3. But we'd paid our money and we stuck it out.

We had different word processors, typewriters and computers over the years, but one thing didn't change. I was still writing the same stories that I wanted to write. Did it matter that I no longer wrote with paper and pen but with a keyboard? Would the story have less soul? I don't think so.

To me, a story is a story whether it is printed on a dead tree or read on a computer screen or ebook reader.

Were the first people to write their stories down outcasts because they were no longer keeping to the oral tradition? Did Gutenberg suffer people not wanting to read books because they were printed rather than written with a quill and ink?

Everything evolves eventually, ebooks are just another step. A good story will have soul whether or not it is printed or electronic or read aloud. I don't think ebooks will replace paper books, the way paperbacks have not replaced hardbacks. They all complement each other and to say that one version has less soul than the other doesn't make sense to me.

I think of myself as a storyteller and I don't mind what way people read my stories, whether it is electronically or on paper.

My soul is in each of them.

Take care,
Annette Gisby

Book Cover Reveal The Druid's Door by S.G. Daniels





We’re happy to celebrate the cover reveal party today for “The Druid’s Doorway”, a YA urban fantasy novel by author SG Daniels.

Without further ado, here is the cover…



About The Druid’s Doorway

Jake Reese thinks he’s just a screwed-up high school kid living in a small town isolated in the Arizona desert. Traumatized at an early age by his mother’s sudden death—and believing he might have had something to do with it—he’s allowed his guilt and lack of self-confidence to rule his life.

Hailey is the fiery little redhead that sees Jake as more than a just a good friend. When she invites him as her date to a school function, it brings down the walls he's built to protect his heart, and sets off a series of events that threaten not only Jake’s life, but that of everyone around him.

The discovery of a portal on the outskirts of town brings Jake face-to-face with death and reveals a closely guarded secret about his mother. No longer is his memory of her the only thing that haunts him. Something evil from her past has escaped through the portal, and nothing will prevent it from trying to steal Jake’s future.

Can Jake overcome his fears to keep Hailey safe? Will the decisions he's forced to make destroy everyone he knows and loves? And ultimately...is he strong enough to live with those choices?

Author Bio

S.G. Daniels lives in rural Central Illinois with her husband of thirty-one years, and two spoiled cats, Payne and Jenks. She works full-time in a local medical facility as a patient accounting refund specialist. Most of her evenings she can be found in front of her computer, working on story ideas, or learning the ins and outs of the writing world. On the weekends, if she’s not spending time outside, she’s usually found nose-deep in a book. When S.G. unleashes her inner daredevil, she usually takes off through winding timber trails or country roads on the ATV. Her weaknesses are iced tea and pretzels, especially when she’s working on a story.

Links

Website: www.sgdaniels.com
Twitter: @SGDanielsAuthor
Facebook: www.facebook.com/s.g.daniels.author
Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/sgdanielsbooks



Book Spotlight: Brand Changing Day by Shawn Mihalik


Brand Changing Day
by Shawn Mihalik
General Fiction/Contemporary Fiction
Amazon Print | Amazon Kindle


About the Book 

In the world of the casual American chain restaurant, brand-changing day signifies the start of something new—new menu items are rolled out, logos are redesigned, service procedures are updated, and old uniforms are traded for hipper, darker, flashier styles.

But for employees at The Grill in Youngstown, Ohio—including twenty- something server Scott Pelletier and forty-something general manager Geoffrey McCree—brand-changing day might be when everything changes. Forever.

***

About the Author:

Shawn Mihalik was born in San Diego, California in 1990. He currently lives in Youngstown, Ohio, where he studied journalism at Youngstown State University. He writes novels, poetry, and short stories and explores the characteristics of different varieties of wine. 

His works include The Final Days of Poetry, a poetry collection; The Flute Player, a novella; and Brand-Changing Day, a novel. 


About the Publisher 

Asymmetrical Press is a publishing house based in Missoula, Montana, run by indie authors, for indie authors—publishing for the indie at heart. 


Book Review: The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith


The Cuckoo's Calling
Cormoran Strike #1
by Robert Galbraith
Review copy from Amazon Vine
5 Stars

A brilliant debut mystery in a classic vein: Detective Cormoran Strike investigates a supermodel's suicide.After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Strike is down to one client, and creditors are calling. He has also just broken up with his longtime girlfriend and is living in his office.

Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: His sister, thelegendary supermodel Lula Landry, known to her friends as the Cuckoo, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man.

You may think you know detectives, but you've never met one quite like Strike. You may think you know about the wealthy and famous, but you've never seen them under an investigation like this.

Review:

Cormoran Strike, wounded war veteran now trying to make his living as a private detective has lots of problems. His longtime girlfriend has just chucked him out, creditors are baying for his money, or failing that his blood, he's got a new secretary who he can't really afford and clients are very thin on the ground.

A few months previously, Lula Landry, a famous supermodel fell to her death from her Mayfair balcony and it's been ruled as a sucidide. Her bother, John doesn't think so and wants Strike to investigate, paying over the odds to find it who really killed her or if it really was a suicide.

Is there such thing as a literary crime novel? If there is, this one fits the bill. It's a book more about the characters than the plot, with lots of vivid descriptions of various parts of London. London itself becomes a character and you could really see the places in your mind's eye.

I'd ordered this book just before I heard that it was JK Rowling, but the book didn't arrive until the truth was out, so that may have influenced my review somewhat. This is a much more grown-up tale than Harry Potter, and if I hadn't known beforehand, I'm not sure I would have guessed it was written by the same author.

The writing here has more maturity, but that might be because Harry Potter was originally intended for children, wheras this one is definitely a book for adults.

I wanted to keep reading to find everything out but at the same time I wanted to savour each page like a delicious dessert. The mystery element is interwoven well with bits about Strike's life and Robin's, his new secretary who secretly held a hankering for working for a detective for years.

Cormoran Strike was wonderful and I hope we get to see more books with this rich new addition to the ranks of PIs.

Reviewed by Annette Gisby

Book Trailer: The Riddler's Gift by Greg Hamerton





The Riddler's Gift
by Greg Hamerton
Epic Fantasy


This is the first tale of the Lifesong fantasy series, a full length epic fantasy set in a time when magic was a raw force, free from the confining code that so tightly binds it today...

Like it? Try a sample on the Amazon page: http://smarturl.it/TRG

Or visit the author on http://greghamerton.com

Book Review: Promise of Blood by Brian McClellan


Promise of Blood
The Powder Mage #1
by Brian McClellan
Fantasy
Review Copy from Amazon Vine
4 Stars

Blurb:

The Age of Kings is dead . . . and I have killed it. 

It's a bloody business overthrowing a king...

Field Marshal Tamas' coup against his king sent corrupt aristocrats to the guillotine and brought bread to the starving. But it also provoked war with the Nine Nations, internal attacks by royalist fanatics, and the greedy to scramble for money and power by Tamas's supposed allies: the Church, workers unions, and mercenary forces.

It's up to a few...

Stretched to his limit, Tamas is relying heavily on his few remaining powder mages, including the embittered Taniel, a brilliant marksman who also happens to be his estranged son, and Adamat, a retired police inspector whose loyalty is being tested by blackmail.

But when gods are involved...

Now, as attacks batter them from within and without, the credulous are whispering about omens of death and destruction. Just old peasant legends about the gods waking to walk the earth. No modern educated man believes that sort of thing. But they should...

In a rich, distinctive world that mixes magic with technology, who could stand against mages that control gunpowder and bullets? PROMISE OF BLOOD is the start of a new epic fantasy series from Brian McClellan.(less)

Review:

In my time, I have read a lot of fantasy and I have to say this is one of the most original, most unique form of magic in a fantasy setting that I've ever seen! There are a few different types of magic users in this world: the Privileged - who are what you would expect of a sorcerer in a fantasy book, then you have the Knacked - who have one particular skill only, such as knowing when someone is lying or the ability to read minds. Then there are the Powder Mages who wield magic through gunpowder - they can make the gunpowder in an enemy's gun explode from a distance, for example, or they can ingest gun powder to induce a trance like state where they can see further etc.

The book has three main POV characters, Field Marshal Tamas, his estranged son Taniel and the ex-police inspector Adamat. After the king and nobles are overthrown and executed, Tamas sends Adamat to investigate the mysterious dying words spoken by every one of the royal cabal of Privileged: "Kresimir's Promise must not be broken".

The author uniquely blends elements of magic, mystery and political intrigue to give a very interesting plot. Some parts were a little bit bloody for my taste, but you couldn't really have the story without them - the book opens on a bloodbath in the royal palace as part of the military coup to take over the country.

It was an interesting read and I think I will be picking up the rest of the series once it's out.

Reviewed by Annette Gisby


Book Review: Altar of Bones by Philip Carter


Altar of Bones
by Philip Carter
Thriller/Conspiracy
Simon and Schuster
Reviewer's Purchased copy

4 stars

Blurb:

"They didn't have to kill him . . . he never drank from the altar of bones."

In San Francisco, a homeless woman is fatally stabbed by an assailant she's been expecting for years—and her cryptic last words unlock a decades-buried secret that changed history.

In Galveston, an old man makes a chilling death-bed confession—"I am not who you think I am"—that serves as a warning to his sons of danger and deception.

In Massachusetts, a cold-blooded female assassin makes an insidious pact with a corporate billionaire over a highly incriminating film.

Each of these people has ties with a woman who, decades ago, fled a Soviet prison camp with an ancient knowledge people would sell their souls to possess

Drawn in to this web of danger are Ry O'Malley, a man desperate to outrun his own deadly fate; and Zoe Dmitroff, a San Francisco attorney who recognizes the slain homeless woman—a woman she was told had died nearly half a century ago. No one can be trusted in the corrosive game of cat-and-mouse that ensues—one that spans a century, from the frozen Siberian terrain to the serpentine streets of Paris, from the shocking revelations of a doomed Hollywood legend to the deadly machinations of the KGB and the highest office of the United States . . . and ultimately to the guardians of an ancient religious icon ...

A priceless artifact worth killing for. The dark and unimaginable promise of a power that could change the world as we know it.

Review:

This was on roller-coaster of a book. The term page-turner hardly does it justice. I was hooked from the first page and just had to keep reading to find out what was going to happen next. Some if it I had guessed, which disappointed me a bit, I would have preferred it if the 'big kill' referred to in the book had been a not so famous kill already.

Nevertheless, the writing flows so well you just want to keep reading. It's a different sort of conspiracy, in that the reader knows quite early on what the altar of bones is and what it can do. Maybe more mystery as to what it was would have been better because I, as a reader, prefer to discover things at the same time as the characters, rather than earlier than them.

Parts of it read like an action movie, but there is more depth in these 600 odd pages than a lot of films.

The characters were spot on, I adored Zoe and Ry, although I did feel the romance between them felt a bit forced. Just because we have a man and a woman forced together by circumstances as they evade the bad guys and find out the secrets of the altar of bones, doesn't mean they have to become romantically involved. It's not a rule or anything. Women will still read books even if there is no romance in it. Really.

Reviewed by Annette Gisby


Book Trailer: Drowning Rapunzel

I never know whether book trailers help or not with book sales, but I do like having them and looking at them :)





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