Sunday, December 9, 2018

Excerpt & Giveaway: A Prophecy Fulfilled by Andi O’Connor



A Prophecy Fulfilled
Andi O’Connor
(The Vaelinel Trilogy #3)
Publication date: December 9th 2018
Genres: Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal
Regrouping after their escape from the Light Elves, Irewen and her companions fear the worst after black smoke plumes on the horizon. Allowing compassion to rule over reason, they ignore Finnwyn’s warning and return to Lilendvelle, hoping to help some of the survivors stranded in the city’s wake. Instead, they run into a trap.
Completely surrounded by an endless army of Drulaack, they fight for their lives, but their efforts aren’t enough. Irewen is captured and dragged into the heart of the Corrupter’s lair.
Having his prize, the others in the company are granted their freedom, but at a great cost: the one named in the prophecy who is meant to unite the elf forces and stand against the Corrupter is lost to the world – trapped beneath the Corrupter’s talons.
With the aid of his mother’s spirit, Brendell must now find a way to gather an alliance strong enough to march against the Corrupter and his army, but his time is running out. Each day that passes brings Irewen closer to death.
And the world closer to destruction.
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EXCERPT:
Slowly opening her eyes, Irewen braced herself for the fresh wave of pain she knew awaited her. Despite expecting it, nothing prepared her for the intensity of the agony ravaging her body.
She yearned to be back in the Spirit World where the misery of her injuries had been severely dampened. Trying to lift her head, she flinched and dropped it back to the cold stone. There was no going back. This was now her life. This was her normalcy.
Following part of Elthad’s advice, she found something to fixate her attention on, in this case, a small crack in the stone where the wall met the floor.
She studied the jagged line, imagining it into different shapes and scenarios. Time slowly passed, and her pain gradually lessened, but her situation remained just as dismal as ever.
Elthad’s gift needed to be used strategically. She couldn’t unleash the weapon unless the timing was perfect. Elthad wouldn’t respond. For the time being, she was trapped.
Irewen turned her thoughts to her last minutes with Elthad’s spirit. It all seemed so surreal. Although she’d witnessed it first-hand, she couldn’t quite believe that she had Elthad’s weapon in her possession.
She mentally rubbed the small lump now tucked safely behind her right ear. Half the size of her pinky fingernail, it now hid what her cousin had claimed would be the answer to her problems. It afforded her a certain sense of security, but at the same time, her peace of mind was an illusion.
This wasn’t a weapon in the traditional sense of the word. Unlike a dagger or bow she could wield with her hands, or a spell she could summon, it was an intangible theory based solely on trust. Trust that Elthad hadn’t been lying to her. Trust that his power would be released in time to save her life.
Trust that he would do anything at all.
Any promises she’d had of escaping from the Corrupter’s prison vanished. Blinded by her desire for freedom, she’d been a total fool. Elthad had given her hope. Nothing more.
The faint clicking of boots on stone pulled her from her musings. She stiffened as the slow, deliberate steps drew nearer. The hair along the back of her neck stood on end. A villainous aura emanated from the newcomer, permeating the already clammy air. The footsteps stopped, and she took advantage of the silence to study the crack in the wall with a newfound concentration.
A man cleared his throat.
The Corrupter.
She didn’t need to look at the person standing before her to know it was him.
“It’s nice to see that you’ve returned.”
Irewen’s body shuddered at the sound of his voice. Staring straight ahead, she fought off the sensation of thousands of bugs crawling over her skin.
“Welcome to your humble new home. It’s not much, but I’m certain you’ll be quite content here, given time.”
His words slithered about her like poison.
“After all, you have nowhere else to go, now that those in the Spirit World have rejected you. It’s such a shame that you can’t return to the welcoming bosom of the dead. Still, that means you’ll be able to spend more time with me. Doesn’t that excite you?”
Clenching her jaw, Irewen fought the urge to answer. Every part of her ached to tell the Corrupter what she thought he could do with his home and his time. Instead, she kept her mouth shut, replaying Elthad’s warning repeatedly in her mind.
“Don’t give him the fodder he desires. He wants you to react. He feeds off of seeing the effects his words have on others. He craves it. Remaining impassive and silent will be far more distressing for him than any insult you could spew. Never grab hold of his bait.”
“So,” the Corrupter continued after a time, his voice thick with amusement, “you’ve decided to answer me with silence. Never fear, there are many ways to make someone talk. I doubt you’ll survive the first treatment, but that won’t be of any loss to me. Silevethiel and that elf prince you’re so fond of will be the ones you’ll end up destroying. I look forward to it. You’ll have done a large part of my job for me. Those two have been a nuisance.”
No! Irewen mentally screamed at herself at the mention of Silevethiel and Laegon. Don’t react! Don’t bloody react!
Gritting her teeth, she stared at the crack more intently than ever before. It seemed to grow, slowly tripling in size until she swore it would reach out and suck her in to its depths. Eventually, her ire dissipated, and the huge fissure returned to its normal, puny size.
She focused on keeping her breaths slow and even, growing increasingly more thankful that she’d decided to swallow her pride and listen to Elthad. Without his insight, she wouldn’t have been able to recognize what the Corrupter was attempting to do. She would have fallen right into his trap, unraveling like he wanted.
A sudden chill filled the air. The Corrupter’s anger seeped into her being, and she smiled inwardly. It was working. Even in her pathetic condition and imprisoned in some god-forsaken cell, she had the upper hand. All she had to do was keep her focus and not give him what he craved.
“You have quite a stubbornness about you,” the Corrupter finally said, his voice thick with disdain. “You’re just like your father, but you will eventually crack. Your father did.”
Without waiting to see if she’d respond, the clicking of boots resounded about the stone walls as the Corrupter left her to muse over his words. She held her breath, waiting until the sound of the footsteps faded completely before trusting herself to let the air out of her lungs. She wanted to scream but couldn’t bring herself to make a sound. She had no way of knowing who or what would be nearby to hear.
Closing her eyes, she visualized the crack from the wall. Completely worn out, all of her muscles relaxed, and she felt as though she was melting into the floor. She had no idea how long she could keep up this charade, but she needed to until the Corrupter cracked.
The first tendrils of sleep began to take hold. Before she fell completely into unconsciousness, she wondered if she would survive his outburst when he finally exploded. Perhaps it wouldn’t be so terrible if she didn’t.


Author Bio:
Andi O'Connor is the award-winning author of The Dragonath Chronicles, The Vaelinel Trilogy, and The Legacy of Ilvania. The Speaker is the 2018 Independent Press Award Winner for Fantasy and a Finalist in the 11th Annual National Indie Excellence Awards. Andi's novel, Awakening, is a 2018 Independent Press Award Distinguished Favorite for Fantasy. Her critically acclaimed novel, Silevethiel, is the 2015 Best Indie Book Award winner for Science Fiction/Fantasy and the 2015 New Apple Official Selection for Young Adult. Silevethiel was also named to Kirkus Reviews' Best Books of 2013.
You can frequently find Andi as an exhibitor and guest panelist at Comic Cons throughout the country including the Rhode Island Comic Con, Awesome Con, Philcon, Conclave, and Chessiecon. For more information, visit Andi's website at www.andioconnor.net

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Saturday, December 8, 2018

Review: The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LaBan

The Tragedy Paper
Cover Source: GoodReads
Title: The Tragedy Paper 
Author: Elizabeth LaBan
Version Reviewed: Finished Audiobook
Website: www.elizabethlaban.com
I borrowed this audiobook from my local library.

GoodReads Synopsis:
Tim Macbeth, a seventeen-year-old albino and a recent transfer to the prestigious Irving School, where the motto is “Enter here to be and find a friend.” A friend is the last thing Tim expects or wants—he just hopes to get through his senior year unnoticed. Yet, despite his efforts to blend into the background, he finds himself falling for the quintessential “It” girl, Vanessa Sheller, girlfriend of Irving’s most popular boy. To Tim's surprise, Vanessa is into him, too, but she can kiss her social status goodbye if anyone ever finds out. Tim and Vanessa begin a clandestine romance, but looming over them is the Tragedy Paper, Irving’s version of a senior year thesis, assigned by the school’s least forgiving teacher.
Jumping between viewpoints of the love-struck Tim and Duncan, a current senior about to uncover the truth of Tim and Vanessa, The Tragedy Paper is a compelling tale of forbidden love and the lengths people will go to keep their love.
Review:
I wasn't too sure what to expect from The Tragedy Paper as I was completely unfamiliar with the author and still am honestly. But I do know one thing about Elizabeth LaBan. She's can tell a darn good story.

The alternating story lines of Tim and Duncan were absolutely amazing and worked so well for this particular story. Tim's story was heartbreaking in the ways that he felt about himself and how the world treated him because he was different. It was so sad yet inspiring to follow along with his budding relationship / friendship with Vanessa and how their two worlds collided and affected everyone around them.

Duncan's story was also a great one. A seemingly average boy, starting a new school year, a crush, and memories of a terribly tragedy that befell his peers, through listening to Tim's story, learns a little more about himself, life, love, school, and The Tragedy Paper.

With romance, heartbreak, angst, and amazing characters, it was a great mix of Thirteen Reasons Why and Looking For Alaska.

I definitely recommend this book to fans of John Green.

Rating: 5 Stars

Friday, December 7, 2018

Excerpt & Giveaway: Breaking Josephine by Brooke Stanton


Breaking Josephine
Brooke Stanton
Publication date: November 1st 2018
Genres: Adult, Historical, Romance
From an award winning and #1 bestselling author comes a “HOT, sexy, and sinfully delicious historical romance!”
Widower Jack Harrington needs a young man to work on his farm, what he gets is eighteen-year-old Josephine Taylor—a spirited young woman from Manhattan. Stubborn and willful, Jo tests Jack’s limits. But soon the struggle between them awakens a passion neither can resist. Giving in to temptation could mean the ruin of Jo socially and the destruction of Jack’s carefully guarded heart. Do they have the courage to fight against the restraints of society and fall into the intoxicating embrace of love…



Sequel:



EXCERPT
The bell rang for the dinner service and the gentleman that sat with him left. A few short minutes later, Ruby was shown to his table. She had changed into a periwinkle dress he'd never seen that fit the curves of her body almost too tightly, her bosom pushing over the top. Her hair was pulled back into a low bun. Had it been like that when they’d boarded the train? He couldn’t remember. She was a far cry from one of the ladies in her fashion magazines, but a step up from the country girl he'd grown up with.
"What are you wearing?" James frowned and glanced around. As he'd suspected, several young men had their eye on her ample chest.
"Jo leant it to me for our honeymoon. It's a little small, but she said I should have some new outfits to start my new life." Ruby narrowed her eyes. "And don't you dare laugh at me, James. Not like last time."
James resisted throwing a napkin at her to cover her chest. "What are you talking about?"
"The only other time I ever dressed up—how silly I realize it was now—you laughed at me."
"I have no idea what you're talking about."
The flare in Ruby's eyes dimmed. "Of course not. I'm not sure you've ever really seen me, James. I've always just been a piece of furniture in your life. Something you can depend on but take for granted it will always be there."
"That's not fair, Ruby."
"I think it's perfectly fair."
Ruby plastered on a glittering smile when the waiter came by to take their orders and offer them champagne. Ruby guzzled hers and asked immediately for another, which she drank in two gulps.
"Slow down, Ruby. You don't want to make a fool of yourself."
"Ha!" Ruby said, and a few heads turned. "You've already made a fool of both of us."


Author Bio:
After her own misadventures in New York City, LA, and London, Brooke Stanton now lives in sunny South Florida. She's an award-winning author who has contributed to Natural Awakenings Magazine, wrote a column for Examiner.com, and is the author of The Bloom Sisters series. Visit her website brookestantonbooks.com.
Get a FREE copy of the prequel, IGNITE, here: http://ilovemyfans.info/ignite-download/


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Thursday, December 6, 2018

Blitz: Cop Tales, An Anthology for a cause


Title: Cop Tales, An Anthology for a cause 
Genre: Romance/Suspense 
Release Date: December 6, 2018 



As authors we are always trying to find ways to give back. Anthologies are a great way to unite indie and traditionally published authors for a worthy cause. In this anthology you will get a combination of rom-com, new adult contemporary romance, and even a little suspense short stories with law enforcement heroes and heroines. Cop Tales is a limited release anthology to raise funds for the Officer Down Memorial Page (ODMP). We back the blue and thank you from the bottom of our hearts for support in this cause. NOTE (not included in book blurb): 100% of the online sale proceeds for six months (e-book and print) will be donated directly to the ODMP. If any reader wants to donate beyond purchasing the anthology, please visit www.odmp.org. Your donation is tax deductible in the US. I don’t know about internationally.




About Officer Down Memorial Page (ODMP)
Founded in1996, the Officer Down Memorial Page (www.ODMP.org) is a non­profit agency dedicated to honoring the memory of law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty. The largest law enforcement memorial in the United States, ODMP pays tribute to over 23,000 fallen law enforcement officers in its online memorial and reflection pages. ODMP also honors fallen K9 officers, provides free resources to law enforcement agencies and officers, and works to keep cop killers behind bars through its No Parole program. The ODMP database tracks LODD statistics in the US back to 1791, enabling the law enforcement community to analyze trends and patterns in order to work toward the goal of improving officer safety.
NOTE: Although this anthology was written to raise awareness and donate to a special cause, the views and opinions expressed in the book are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of ODMP. ODMP is not a partner, sponsor, or affiliate of Cop Tales an Anthology for a Cause.


 
 


T.R. Cupak

T.R. Cupak is a romance author known for "Shattering hearts and piecing them back together one story at a time". When she's not busy adulting, you can find her speeding through the backroads with her husband in their weekend fun car or cuddling with her goofy Shih Tzu, Harley.
 

Christine Besze

Christine Besze is an author who brings rom-com to a whole new level with relatable characters who give you laugh out loud moments in her contemporary romance novels. She lives in Georgia with her husband, two gingers, and mini-herd of German Shepherds.
 

Kat T. Masen

Kat is an author known for sexy, humorous, smut. She was born and bred in Sydney, Australia. Kat T. Masen is a mother to four crazy boys and wife to one sane husband. Growing up in a generation where social media and fancy gadgets didn’t exist, she enjoyed reading from an early age and found herself immersed in these stories.

Dee Ellis

From the Midwest, Dee Ellis is a contemporary romance author who looks like the secretary she is by day, but talks-and sometimes acts-like the dirty mouthed author she is by night!
 

Abbi Glines

Abbi Glines is a #1 New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of the Rosemary Beach, Sea Breeze, Vincent Boys, Existence, and The Field Party Series. When she’s not locked away writing, she is reading, shopping (major shoe and purse addiction), sneaking off to the movies alone, and listening to the drama in her teenager’s lives while making mental notes on the good stuff to use later. Don’t judge.
 

Kathleen Kelly

Kathleen enjoys writing contemporary, romance novels with a little bit of erotica. She draws her inspiration from family, friends and the people around her.
 

Maren Lee

Maren Lee is a wine drinker, mountain woman, and contemporary romance author. Her first novel, Ride-along, was written on a dare and she loved doing it so much, she decided to write a whole series about the sexy deputies of the fictional Bounty County Sheriff’s Department.
 

Martha Sweeney

Martha Sweeney is an Amazon Best-Selling author who writes in a variety of genres: romance, suspense, thriller, coloring books, romantic comedy and thriller/sci-fi and soon sci-fi/fantasy. She strives to push herself as a storyteller with each new tale and hopes to push her readers outside of their comfort zone whether it be a particular genre or the stories themselves.
 

M.Clarke

International Bestselling/Award Winning Author M. Clarke resides in Southern California with her husband and two children. She wrote her first YA novel, Crossroads, to heal the loss of her grandmother.

J.L. Perry

#1 International bestseller author, and winner of RWA Ruby award for Romance Book of the Year. She is a romantic at heart and lives in Australia with her husband and son.

Nicole Loufas

Nicole Loufas writes addictive fiction so compelling once you start her books, you can't stop.
 

Jess Bryant

Jess Bryant started writing as a little girl but her life changed forever when she stole a book from her aunt's Harlequin collection. She’s been creating love stories with your happily ever after ever since.
 

Kimberly Knight

Kimberly Knight is a USA Today bestselling author that writes romance and erotic fiction that makes you laugh, cry, swoon, and fall in love before throwing you curve balls you never see coming.
 

Linnea Valle

After almost 30 years of dreaming of writing and publishing a romance novel, Linnea Valle published her debut novel in June, 2018. In her spare time, she enjoys kayaking and spending time with her husband, family and dogs.

S.Cole

Cole may be short but she’s big on ideas. She writes in multiple genres including romance, horror, and thrillers. You never know what you’ll get from Shay next but isn’t that half the fun?
 

N.E. Henderson

E. Henderson is the author of sexy, contemporary romance. When she isn’t writing, you can find her reading some form of romance or in her Maverick, playing in the dirt.


Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Excerpt & Giveaway: Waypoint by Deborah Adams & Kimberley Perkins


Waypoint
Deborah Adams & Kimberley Perkins
Publication date: December 1st 2018
Genres: Adventure, Post-Apocalyptic, Thriller, Young Adult
How far will they go to restore the power?
It’s been lights-out for three months and society is already falling into chaos.
Teenage tech-genius Simon Harper and his team of fellow gamers have been searching for the cause of the outage since it went down. Simon and his twin brother West are often at odds, but when the key to restoring power drops into their hands, they’ll risk everything and join forces to bring it back.
Descend into an epic, young adult adventure, featuring family and friendship with a heart-skipping side of romance by debut authors Deborah Adams and Kimberley Perkins.
Mysterious deaths and disappearances are piling up, and unknown enemies are everywhere. As the brothers make their 500-mile journey to Waypoint they’ll have to decide who they can trust, and which secrets can be told.
“Thanks to its tantalizing pace, well-established consequences, and complicated character development, this novel is worth writing home about. I didn’t feel ready for it to end.” -Independent Book Review


EXCERPT
Well, there went his carefully laid-out plans and strict schedule. What was he going to do with this chick? She needed help. That much was obvious. But West could already tell she was one of those people who invited trouble.
And—she was pretty.
Which made no difference.
She’d been standing there, staring at that map with this cute but frustrating resolve on her face. He just knew she was going to attempt the journey to the Ranger’s Station alone. Which might have been suicide considering her lack of any supplies helpful for such a journey.
He felt like he’d done the right thing by bringing her along, but still, he’d regretted the decision almost immediately. After telling him she was from the “north”—whatever that meant—she’d gone on to share every random fact she’d ever stored in her pretty head.
Peeking over his shoulder, he could see bruises darkening under her skin. She’d taken some rough hits, and right now she was chirping on about some rainbow-colored ice cream she’d eaten when she was ten. He kind of wished he could bounce back like that.
Her chattering continued, her voice mixing in with the crickets and other background noises of the forest. Crickets! That was exactly what she reminded him of.
“Hey, Cricket,” he called out, “as fascinating as this is—and I can’t wait to hear what happened once you got three scoops instead of two—I usually like to hike in silence. You know, commune with nature.”
She blinked twice.
“Cricket?” she asked.
“Trust me, it suits you,” he replied. “Anyway, what do you say? Can we try a little communing?”
She glared. “Is this your not-so-subtle way of asking me to shut up?”
“Yeah, that’s about it.”



Author Bio:
DEBORAH ADAMS and KIMBERLEY PERKINS are friends and coworkers. They share a love of coffee, literature, and teenagers saving the world. By day, they work for a defense contractor in Huntsville, Alabama as the HR Director and an Excel-wielding Analyst, respectively. By night, they build worlds with words and devour stories. For more information about Deborah Adams and Kimberley Perkins and their foray into writing, check them out on social media.



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Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Excerpt & Giveaway: Wolf Tamer by Yumoyori Wilson


Wolf Tamer
Yumoyori Wilson
(Claiming My Pack #1)
Publication date: October 6th 2018
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance
An Orphan Girl. A Group of Wolves. A Destined Fate for War.
Don’t you ever wish to find where you belong? A place where you can rest your head without worrying about being jumped or your possessions being taken from you? Not like I had much, to say the least.
A pendant, an ancient blade, and a picture of my murdered family were all I had left when I was five years old. Foster homes to homeless shelters, I never found a place of refuge. I simply didn’t belong, and everyone made it their duty to remind me of my predicament. Until I finally came across a place that felt like home.
Sacred Moon Shelter for Endangered Wolves. I’d stumbled upon the sanctuary when I was near death, but I was miraculously saved.
Since then, I’ve become a Wolf Tamer; the only one who can get close to touching the six rare breeds. When I’m with them, I feel safe and sometimes wish I could be like one of them and escape this cruel world.
But such inhumanity strikes home, a group of hunters shows up, ready to take my wolves to an unknown place or murder them in cold blood. I won’t allow them to kill the only true family I’d ever known.
My name is Harper Blake, and I vow to claim and protect my own.
Wolf Tamer is a new Wolf Shifter Reverse Harem Romance. Recommended for 18+ Audiences.



EXCERPT:
"O'Neil," I said with a smile.
"Hey, kiddos. You guys gonna come down to eat dinner soon?"
"Um, sure. We're almost done reading," I pointed out.
"And we're 12 and 14, O'Neil. We're not kiddos," Ian stated.
"Sure, mature Kiddo." O'Neil winked at us with a smirk. "See ya downstairs. Muffin, make sure they don't make out."
My face burned red and I stuttered, "We're READING!"
"Alright," O'Neil called out, closing the door. We could hear his fading footsteps as he climbed back down, and we were both silent for a good minute before I had the guts to peer over my shoulder to look at Ian's expression.
His face was bright red up to his ears. "Ian...your ears are red."
Ian groaned. "It's hot that's why."
"Sure. Super hot."
Don't be a promoter.
"I thought it said in books that wolf shifters are honest."
I am honest.
"With me? Yes. With your emotions? Not so much. Could have been Ian's mate already."
Th-that isn't true. I'm twelve.
"Smart, twelve-year-old who likes Ian Chestwood and smells his clothes when he isn't looking. Does he know about the drawer in your room with half his missing clothes?"
Enough! And don't tell him that.
"Intriguingly enough I can't yet, but when we learn how to shift and if you still haven't told him about your feelings, I'm telling Wolfie."
You're mean.
"You love me."



Author Bio:
Yumoyori Wilson is from Toronto, Ontario. She's a Full-time author who loves to write many different genres. On her down time, she bothers her Mom and likes to drink bubbletea while reading and playing video games.






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Monday, December 3, 2018

Excerpt & Giveaway: #Vacay by Cambria Hebert


#Vacay
Cambria Hebert
Publication date: December 3rd 2018
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
A #Hashtag and BearPaw Resort Crossover Novella
VACATION MODE ON
#Vacay Itinerary:
—Make new friends
—Meet a big dog
—Kiss in the snow
—Don’t get lost
—Ignore the press
—Don’t make national news
—Drink all the cocoa
—Wear all the hoodies
—Eat all the food
—Get lit!

*Please note: This is not a full length novel, but a crossover novella featuring characters from The Hashtag and BearPaw Resort series. It is apporximately 45k. The paperback is approximately 205 pages.
EXCERPT:
“Family meeting!” I yelled from the bottom of the stairs, then, without pause, hit a few buttons on the phone screen.
“This better be good,” a voice grumbled in my ear after several rings.
“Family meeting,” I declared again.
He started to groan, but I hung up.
Family meetings were not negotiable. Not ever. Especially when I had something good I wanted to say.
Rimmel shuffled out of the kitchen, drowning in my hoodie and a pair of oversized sweats. Her hair looked like a chicken took up residence in the strands, and her nose was all scrunched up, accentuating the tired look in her eyes.
“Roman Anderson!” she chided, sassy as ever. “What in the world do you think you’re doing yelling up the stairs like that at six a.m.?”
Running a hand through my damp hair, I gave her a crooked smile. “Family meeting, baby.”
She snorted. “There can’t possibly be anything that important at this hour. If you wake up the boys with all that yelling…” she warned. In her arms, our daughter stirred. Rim glanced down then back at me accusingly. “Look what you did!”
I rolled my eyes. “London was already awake,” I pointed out, gazing directly at the bottle Rim was holding.
Rimmel looked down at our daughter, her eyes softening. My heart clutched a little, tightness squeezing my chest. London might be our youngest child, but seeing Rim standing in my house, drowning in sweats and holding my daughter, was something that would always affect me.
They were perfect standing there. My girls.
“Your daddy is a crazy man,” Rimmel told London. “Calling silly meetings at the crack of dawn.”
London made a sound and reached up for the black-framed glasses perched on Rim’s face.
“Nothing I do is silly! Don’t be telling my girl disparaging things about me,” I grumped, going forward to gently take her out of Rimmel’s arms. After taking the bottle, I glanced down. “Don’t listen to her, Strawberry. Mommy’s just grouchy without her coffee.”
London smelled like Rimmel, and I cuddled her closer into my chest. She reached for the bottle and pulled it to her mouth, her wide blue eyes staring at me like I was the only thing she saw in the world.
Smiling, I brushed at the soft dark hair covering her head. She was a miniature version of my wife, only with blue eyes.
The only one of our children to actually favor Rim in looks over me.
“Go get some coffee, baby. I got this.”
When Rimmel didn’t move, I glanced up. She was staring at me and London.
Lifting an eyebrow, I said, “What?”
That kissable mouth of hers pulled into a soft smile. “I just like watching you with her.”
“You make good kids, smalls.”
“You aren’t so bad yourself, Mr. Anderson.”
Heavy footfalls on the stairs made Rim lift her head.
“I’m gonna kick you in the ass, Rome,” Braeden grumped, scrubbing a hand over his face as he yawned.
“Rise and shine,” I drawled, then leaned over to kiss Rimmel on the forehead. “Get your coffee,” I instructed softly.
“It better already be made,” B bickered, brushing past.
Rimmel smiled and turned to go into the kitchen, but her feet got caught in the damn too-large sweatpants and she pitched sideways.
I lunged forward, clutching our daughter in one hand and reaching out with the other. Braeden moved a little quicker and scooped her up before she could hit the floor.
“Girl, either eat a steak or get some pants that fit,” he said, placing her on her feet.
“I thought you were half asleep.” She smacked his chest and started toward the kitchen. She fell so much it didn’t even faze her anymore.
I glanced down at London. “You can look like Mommy all you want, but how about taking on my reflexes, huh?”
“I ain’t so tired I can’t catch my sister before she busts her ass.” B scolded Rim as they continued into the kitchen. “We got shit to do today. A hospital visit ain’t on the list.”
“You know what this meeting is about?” The accusation in her voice made me wince, and I hot-footed it into the living room. I’d let him deal with that.


Author Bio:
Cambria Hebert is an award winning, bestselling novelist of more than twenty books. She went to college for a bachelor’s degree, couldn’t pick a major, and ended up with a degree in cosmetology. So rest assured her characters will always have good hair.
Besides writing, Cambria loves a caramel latte, staying up late, sleeping in, and watching movies. She considers math human torture and has an irrational fear of chickens (yes, chickens). You can often find her running on the treadmill (she’d rather be eating a donut), painting her toenails (because she bites her fingernails), or walking her chorkie (the real boss of the house).
Cambria has written within the young adult and new adult genres, penning many paranormal and contemporary titles. Her favorite genre to read and write is romantic suspense. A few of her most recognized titles are: The Hashtag Series, Text, Torch, and Tattoo.
Cambria Hebert owns and operates Cambria Hebert Books, LLC.

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Excerpt & Giveaway: The Fog by Amanda McKinney


The Fog
Amanda McKinney
(A Berry Springs Novel)
Publication date: December 4th 2018
Genres: Adult, Mystery, Romance
Former Marine turned ballistics expert, Wesley Cross is known around town for two things, his rugged good-looks and cocky attitude—until he finds his ex-girlfriend lying in a puddle of blood in his basement. The scene screams setup, but the discovery of a rare gem and a puzzling autopsy suggests the murder goes much deeper than that. Wesley will do whatever it takes to clear his name, including calling in a notoriously headstrong—and sexy—scientist.
While most little girls were playing dress up, Gwyneth Reece was digging in the dirt collecting bugs. Now one of the top forensic entomologists in the country, Gwen reluctantly accepts a job from a pushy cowboy and travels to the small, Southern town of Berry Springs. Heavy storms are brewing, and when she’s forced to check into the creepiest hotel she’s ever seen, she instantly regrets her decision to help out the former Marine.
Following up on a tip, Wesley heads to the Half Moon Hotel but quickly realizes his visit was not by chance. The killer lured him there, and suddenly everyone from the uptight bellman to the wealthy couple just passing through town become suspect. Bodies begin to disappear, and Wesley knows the killer will do anything to get to him…. including hurting the woman who’s kept his head spinning since he first laid eyes on her.


EXCERPT:
WESLEY LOOKED DOWN at the blood on his hands. He hadn’t bothered to wash them, hell, he hadn’t even thought about it, but now he wished he’d taken a quick second to do just that.
He rubbed his thumb over his palm, hoping the dried blood would erase away.
It didn’t.
The coffee pot gurgled and beeped. When Chief McCord had asked him to leave the scene and wait in his kitchen upstairs, he’d started a pot. He wasn’t sure why—nervous energy, he assumed. Or maybe it was a subconscious gesture to remind everyone that he was a nice guy and not someone capable of murdering his former lover in his basement. He hadn’t even considered that he would be the initial suspect until he’d seen the questioning look in the Chief’s eyes as he approached the scene.
A thin beam of moonlight shone through the window above the sink, sparkling off a kitchen knife he’d used earlier in the day. A wave of nausea washed over him. He rubbed his hands together again, the blood on his skin beginning to feel suffocating.
Jesus Christ, he needed a shower.
Underneath the table, he shuffled his cowboy boots, knowing that they were covered in blood, too.
It had happened so fast. So fucking fast. The blood… just seemed to drain out of her.
He felt his pulse begin to pick up with anxiety, an unfamiliar feeling for the fearless former Marine. He glanced at the digital clock glowing from the stove—almost one thirty in the morning. The chaos in the basement was beginning to die down, but there were still a number of uniforms swarming his home.
He clasped his hands together on the table and swallowed the knot in his throat.
“Wesley? You alright, man?”
His gaze lifted. He blinked and was pulled back to the moment. “Sorry. Yeah.” He looked at the recorder sitting in the middle of the table.
“Okay.” Detective Dean Walker sat across from him, a line of concern running across his tanned forehead. “We’re going to go through all this again. Remember, this will all be on record now. Everything you say, okay?”
Wesley nodded.
Dean put his finger on the record button, but then paused and leaned forward. “Sure you don’t need a second, man? Want to take a lap outside or something? Gather your thoughts?”
A small, appreciative small smile crossed Wesley's lips. He’d always liked Dean; a hardworking, true southern cowboy, who was knee-deep in his first year as Berry Springs’s only detective. Friends for decades, Dean had helped Wesley build his shop when he’d started his own gun manufacturing business eight years earlier, and Wesley had returned the favor when he helped Dean solve the cold case of Dean’s father’s homicide using his ballistics expertise. They respected each other, and it was a relationship Wesley was sure glad he had in his current circumstance.
“No, I want to get this shit done.” He nodded toward the recorder. “Turn it on.”


Author Bio:
Award-winning author of romantic suspense and mystery, Amanda McKinney wrote her debut novel, LETHAL LEGACY, after walking away from her career to become a writer and stay-at-home mom. Set in small, Southern towns, Amanda’s books are page-turning murder mysteries peppered with steamy love scenes, and include the BERRY SPRINGS SERIES and the BLACK ROSE MYSTERY SERIES, with many more to come.


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Saturday, December 1, 2018

Review: Dash & Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares
Cover Source: GoodReads
Title: Dash & Lily's Book of Dares
Series:  Dash & Lily #1
Authors: Rachel Cohn, David Levithan
Narrators: Ryan Gesell, Tara Sands
Version Reviewed: Finished Audiobook
I borrowed this audiobook from my local library.

GoodReads Synopsis:
A whirlwind romance from the New York Times bestselling authors of Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist!
“I’ve left some clues for you.
If you want them, turn the page.
If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.”
16-year-old Lily has left a red notebook full of challenges on her favorite bookstore shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept its dares. Dash, in a bad mood during the holidays, happens to be the first guy to pick up the notebook and rise to its challenges.

What follows is a whirlwind romance as Dash and Lily trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations all across New York City. But can their in-person selves possibly connect as well as their notebook versions, or will their scavenger hunt end in a comic mismatch of disastrous proportions?
Co-written by Rachel Cohn (GINGERBREAD) and David Levithan, co-author of WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON with John Green (THE FAULT IN OUR STARS), DASH & LILY'S BOOK OF DARES is a love story that will have readers scouring bookstore shelves, looking and longing for a love (and a red notebook) of their own.
Review:
I was really excited to read this book as it promised a fun, light read. It definitely delivered and I'm so happy to have read Dash & Lily's Book of Dares. I was pretty much hooked from the beginning, loving the idea of a boy randomly finding a journal in a bookstore and following the dares that someone had written inside.

I'll be honest and say that I did occasionally find some of the characters a little annoying and immature but the story itself was so cute that it didn't bother me at all. I really enjoyed following along with the characters as they learned more about each other and found different ways to continue their game. Though a bit dangerous, I do think it's a fun idea and would be neat to do something similar in real life.

Overall a nice, quick little read, especially great during the holidays. :)

Rating: 4 Stars

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Changes Are Coming...


It's honestly hard for me to write this.

Not because I'm unsure of my decision but because it's a decision that I didn't think I'd be making for years, if ever. When I first joined the book blogging world my life was in a hard transitional period. My husband and I were going through a tough time financially, were living in his friend's parent's basement, and were recovering from the devastation of an ectopic pregnancy after attempting to get pregnant for over a year. That time in my life was one of pain, insecurity, and unknowing. We didn't know what we were going to do next, what step we were going to take, and I found myself struggling deeply with my anxiety and depression. It was at this time that I discovered the book blogging world and it brought such a light to my life. I've always been a huge reader and I always wanted to do more with the books that I read. I've always wanted to be an author but, in the meantime, I wanted to be a part of it in a different way. I wanted to read books and help authors and spread the word on amazing stories.

From that day forward, I have thrown myself into blogging about books and making it a huge part of my life. There's been ups and downs over the years, moments of inconsistency and a lot of changes to my content. But I always made it a priority.

Almost eight years later, I've come to a standstill.

I've recently dedicated myself to fixing myself, working on my anxiety, changing parts of my life that no longer align with my goals and the things that are no longer a part of my dream. I'm working on my faith, working towards becoming a better mom, a better wife, a better person in general. I'm working on me and the things that I want my life to have.

Unfortunately, book blogging is no longer at the top of that priority list.

My life was in a transition point when I first started blogging and now I find myself myself in a similar - yet strongly different - situation. I am changing and evolving and growing as a person and my life is starting to align with that. My anxiety is heightened by clutter (both physical and mental) and stress. I'm a mom of two, I'm homeschool my five year old, I babysit for a family that we love, I'm journeying down the path of minimalism, all while working towards my goal of publishing my first book.

Although I love spreading the word about great books and helping out authors, I no longer enjoy the act of blogging. It's become more of a burden instead of a pleasure and there are other, more precious and important things where my time could be better spent.

I'm ready to tackle my own goals and dreams and put my energy into my family, my life, and my own writing career. I will still be sharing on the Rainy Days and Pajamas Facebook page and sharing my thoughts on books that I read but I will no longer make reading such a job. Reviews that I have promised will still be posted, ARCs will still be read, but this blog, until further notice, will officially be on hiatus. When it will become active again, I'm honestly not sure. It honestly may never be active again. I have events scheduled from December and throughout February but that will be it guys.

It's been a great run but here's to the future!
I hope to see you again soon - holding my own book in my hands.
If you've read this far, I give you a big high five and you're freakin' awesome.

If you'd like to follow along with my writing journey and want to help spread the word about my future books, click the graphic below.

Peace out, guys.

- Darcus.


Excerpt & Giveaway: Scythe by Christina Bauer


Scythe
Christina Bauer
(Dimension Drift Worlds, #1)
Publication date: April 24th 2018
Genres: Dystopian, Fantasy, Young Adult
“Fans of A Wrinkle in Time can’t missDimension Drift!” – Christina Trevaskis, The Book Matchmaker
Truth time. I go to a Learning Squirrel High School. Don’t judge.
On second thought, judge away. Learning Squirrel is one step above attending class in a junkyard. But what do you expect? Everything’s made out of garbage these days. At least, I have my freelance work to keep Mom and me housed, clothed, and fed. How? I’m your regular high school science geek for hire, except my work manipulates space-time. The good news is that these gigs pay really well; the bad news is that the government likes to kill people like me. Whatever. I’m not worried; hiding from their detection systems is easy for me.
Then I screw up one of my illegal projects. Badly.
In fact, things go so sideways that my house slips into two-dimensional space-time. The shift only lasts for a few seconds, but that’s long enough to set off a dozen government alarms. If those goons track me down, Mom and I are as good as dead. Long story short, I need to pay someone off, hide the evidence, and keep us safe.
Unfortunately, that means asking the Scythe for help. He runs the local underground crime scene and has absolutely no conscience…Or at least, I’m pretty sure he doesn’t. It’s hard to think straight when a guy’s that hot in an ‘evil Mafioso kingpin’ kind of way. Most importantly, the Scythe is a crime lord who can conceal my slip-up with a few clicks on his minion’s computer keyboards. But the man has his price. In this case, the Scythe wants me to finish a certain dimensional prototype for him in twenty-four hours. I can do it, but it might mean Learning Squirrel High gets blown up in the process. Oh yes, and there’s also my new hot classmate who may or may not be an alien…and he says he’ll do anything to help me.
This job won’t be easy, but I’ve gotten out of worse scrapes. Maybe.


EXCERPT
SCYTHE
Dimension Drift, Prequel 1
Chapter One

Not long now.
Up ahead, a tiny concrete tower rises from the darkened hilltop. Guardhouse #83. I scan the gravel road before me. Everything is deserted, quiet, and perfect. Despite the chilly night air, a rush of excitement warms my limbs. Most days, I’m a teenage she-hermit who lives for my basement laboratory. But in this moment, I’m my best self: a science prodigy-for-hire whose inventions secure my family’s safety. And if a little thievery is involved? Well, that just makes me a lot badass.
In other words, time to steal for Mom and science.
Marching to the guardhouse, I stop before the intake window. There’s no need to announce myself; motion detectors will activate the auto-guard. Seconds later, a mechanical buzz sounds as florescent lights click on, revealing an animatronic woman sitting at a fake desk. Like most auto-guards, this one is less than perfect, what with her
chipped plastic skin, frayed blue uniform, frizzed-out hair, and single functioning eye. Raising her head, she addresses me through the Plexiglas.
“You have reached guardhouse #83 for Reclamation Center Massachusetts-1,” she says. “The manufacture of new goods is reserved for the military, so we sort, clean, and refurbish old items from landfills.”
To kill time, I adjust the loose straps on my backpack. This auto-guard won’t interact with me until her welcome spiel is over. Sadly, animatronic speeches at Reclamation Center Massachusetts-1—also called RCM1—always take a while.
With jerky movements, the auto-guard gestures to the monitor embedded in the outer concrete wall. Here comes the slide show. Images appear on the screen, showing endless rows of long metal buildings stretching off to the horizon. “Since our founding in 2107, RCM1 has processed more than three million objects across two thousand warehouses. It is now 11:43 pm. How may I be of service?”
That’s my cue. All the blah-blah-blah is done.
“I need to check in for my shift,” I say.
Which is a total lie.



Author Bio:
Christina Bauer knows how to tell stories about kick-ass women. In her best selling Angelbound series, the heroine is a part-demon girl who loves to fight in Purgatory’s Arena and falls in love with a part-angel prince. This young adult best seller has driven more than 500,000 ebook downloads and 9,000 reviews on Goodreads and retailers. The first three books in the series are now available as audiobooks on Audible and iTunes.
Bauer has also told the story of the Women’s March on Washington by leading PR efforts for the Massachusetts Chapter. Her pre-event press release—the only one sent out on a major wire service—resulted in more than 19,000 global impressions and redistribution by over 350 different media entities including the Associated Press.
Christina graduated from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School with BA’s in English along with Television, Radio, and Film Production. She lives in Newton, MA with her husband, son, and semi-insane golden retriever, Ruby.
Stalk Christina On Social Media – She Loves It!

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Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Excerpt & Giveaway: Love Over Logic by Diana A. Hicks


Love Over Logic
Diana A. Hicks
(Desert Monsoon #2)
Publication date: November 15th 2018
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Attorney, Emilia Prado has been living in hiding, ever since the local cartel killed her dad and left her and her mom for dead. But when her long lost cousin needs help leaving her drug lord husband, Emilia knows her time for justice has come.
Hot shot lawyer, Dom Moretti never met a case he couldn’t win. Each win puts distance between him and an old life he wants to forget. But when Emilia, a crush from law school, asks for his help, the life he worked so hard for hangs in the balance.
Out to even the score, Emilia is ready to enact revenge on her father’s killer. But will she risk losing Dom to a side of himself he thought was dead and buried?



EXCERPT
“You never asked me out.”
“Are you kidding me? I sat across from you at the library and asked if you wanted to get coffee. You were so quick to put me in my place. It took me days to recover from the whiplash.”
Did I do that? I scoured my memory for the details of that day. He hadn’t asked me out. “You didn’t ask me out. You asked me to get you a coffee.”
“Why would I do that? That doesn’t even make sense.”
“It kind of did. You walked around campus like you were God’s gift to women.”
“Believe me when I tell you I’m no gift from God. Quite the opposite. You were right to turn me away. That day had been especially bad for me. I’d asked you out in a moment of weakness. I wanted to get close to you so badly.” He gripped my waist tighter, his lips ghosting mine. The same way he’d done after I told him he could get his own coffee. When in my haste to get away from him, I’d tripped over my computer bag and he caught me. I hadn’t imagined it. He’d meant to kiss me, or at least thought about it. His ragged breath brushed against my cheek. “I still do. You have no idea how much.”
I tugged my hand from under his and kneaded the hard ridges on his stomach. He wanted me to make the choice for us. After the last two nights, I didn’t think I had the willpower to push him away anymore.
“Things are different now. There are no more secrets between us. We decide what we do with our lives. So I’m asking again. You and me…why the hell not?”
“We decide.” I echoed his words.
“I want to kiss you.”
I nodded because I’d been dying to kiss him too. He shoved his hand into my hair and crushed his lips against mine. His tongue, laced with wine, urged me to let him in. When I did, he let out a groan that sent a desire-induced surge through my body. I melted into him, letting his hand guide me into his kiss. He switched between treating my mouth to his soft lips, and the expert thrusts of his tongue. My pulse quickened, pumping hot blood through every fiber of me.
“God, Emilia, you taste so fucking good.” He released the grip he had on my waist and skimmed his fingers up my back. Their warmth rushed down my spine and settled at my core. How was it possible to want someone this much? With a snap, he unhooked my bra, while his other hand made quick work of my buttons. Something like a moan escaped my lips. If I hadn’t been so subdued by his heated touch, I would’ve been embarrassed.
“Maybe your battery-operated Dom can make you come, but I can do so much more for you. You and I, we fit so well. I felt it the first time I saw you.” His hand settled on my scars, and I rocked my hips against him, running my fingernails across his chest and his scar.
Yeah, I’d felt it too. The electric charge in the air every time he was near. It was why I’d kept my distance all this time. Dom was so much more than I imagined. The intensity of his words, the hardness of his body, and that sinful mouth of his surpassed any fantasy I’d ever had of him.
Jesus. This guy was so out of my league.
“Wait,” I whispered.
He groaned into the soft spot between my neck and shoulder and sat up, holding me tight. “Are you sure?”
No, I wasn’t sure.


 Author Bio:
Diana A. Hicks is an award-winning author of steamy contemporary romance and science fiction. Her latest release LOVE OVER LATTES, Book 1 in her Desert Monsoon Series, is a 2018 Readers' Favorite Honorable Mention in the Romance - Contemporary genre!
When Diana is not writing, she enjoys kickboxing, traveling, and indulging in the simple joys of life like wine and chocolate. She lives in Atlanta, and loves spending time with her two children and husband.
Connect with Diana on social media to stay up to date on her latest releases.

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