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Second Chance Cover Reveal

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: July 3, 2017
Pages: 300
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About the Book

Just when life settles down to a dull roar for those people whom Pam holds closest to her heart, the pendulum swings in the opposite direction and everyone is tossed into the air. Who will they hold on to as they fall back to Earth?

Gladys finds the son she gave up at birth forty years ago; he’s a single fire fighter on Staten Island. At their first meeting, he sees Pam’s beautiful daughter, Lisa. Will it be love at first sight?

Big Ed leaves Gladys, his wife of almost forty years for Melody. The unexpected? Gladys falls into the arms of the eligible bachelor, Dave, owner of Organic Bonanza. Will it be a case of I don’t want her, you can’t have her?

And last but not least, Sandra starts up an unusual relationship with her late ex’s ex-wife, Jenna. But history might repeat itself; Sandra can not be trusted.

Second Chance is the fifteenth novel in the beloved Pam of Babylon series.

Excerpt

July. Fire House A-89, in the northeast corner of Staten Island.

Early Saturday morning, as the sun rose, fire fighter Dale McGuire stripped off turnout gear and hung it to air out on a hook on the outside of his locker. Coming in from a call for a small brush fire at the side of the highway right before the Verrazano Bridge entrance, Dale looked forward to coffee, something to eat, and bed for a nap, in that order.

Grabbing a towel, he walked to the shower, whistling.

“McGuire is happy this morning,” his colleague, Paul shouted, coming on his shift.

“Yeah, because he gets to go home,” another firefighter called out.

Chuckling, Dale nodded. Life was so peaceful, if it weren’t for the fires he fought, the lives occasionally rescued, he’d have to consider getting a hobby just to prevent boredom from setting in. Mind a blank as he lathered up, he thought of getting home to his dog, Tilly. She’d be on the back of the couch, waiting for him.

“Jesus, buddy, I’m embarrassed to strip in front of you,” Paul said, pointing to Dale returning from the shower. “Look at this guy’s abs.”

Quickly pulling his towel up higher, Dale laughed. “You’re not my type,” he said over the hilarity. “I won’t watch you if it’ll help.”

Locker room banter took some of the pain the exhaustion the night shift firefighters experienced away. “See you Monday,” Dale said when he was dressed, grabbing his duffle bag.

He lived in the house his late parents’ left him on Todt Hill, within walking distance to the firehouse. Volunteering there during high school, he bypassed college, much to his parents’ chagrin, and took a full time position as a firefighter rather than go away to his father’s alma mater in Philadelphia.

“It’s an honorable position, Douglas,” his mother had said in Dale’s defense. “Don’t make yourself sick with disappointment.”

“I wanted our son to follow in my footsteps. A McGuire at Penn is a tradition.”

Twenty years later, they were both dead, a fatal car wreck snuffing out the lives of Dale’s favorite people. Walking up the hill, he glanced up at the imposing structure in the bright morning sun. It was a grand house, but too big for a single man approaching middle-age.

Parents gone almost three years, he’d taken over the house as his own and couldn’t imagine anyone else living there with him. The scariest part of that; he knew he was becoming so set in his ways that if he didn’t fall in love soon, it might be too late.

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About the Author


My books are all creations of a rich and sometimes devilish dream life.  Don’t worry—you won’t see yourself in any of my books, but if you do, it’s just a coincidence…

In a former life, I was a registered nurse who worked in the Operating Room for many years. Prior to nursing school, I was an OR technician, and after working in the OR for over thirty-three years, I can’t stand the sight of blood!

I’ve been married to my high school sweetheart for forty-eight years. We have two children and seven grandchildren and are down to one dog, Oscar. We live in the isolated mountains of north San Diego county, rarely leaving the sanctuary. It’s a wonderful place to hide out and write. I’m a member of the Romance Writers of America and the RWA San Diego Chapter.

Connect with Suzanne

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Enter via the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win one of the following:

First prize: Pam of Babylon bracelet and eBook box set of novels 1-5 in the series
Second prize: eBook box set of novels 1-5 in the series
Third prize: e-copy of Pam of Babylon

The contest closes at midnight EST on June 9 and is open to entrants worldwide.

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La Patron Book Tour & Giveaway

 
Genre: 
Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Sitting Bull Publications
Publication Date: June 27, 2014
Pages: 227
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About the Book

In BirthSign, Silas and Jasmine are in the midst of their mating celebration. Yes! It has been a long, difficult road, but Silas wants the entire nation to see his gift from the Goddess and
prepares a lavish celebration that lasts four days. Before the first event the U.S. Government calls in a favor and the ceremony takes a hit.
Jasmine voices her concerns over the request but accepts her mate’s explanation and the
ceremony continues. Midway through the celebration, Silas discovers he has been duped and now has to deal with the Joint Chiefs, the President and worst… an angry mate.
As Jasmine comes to grips with just how powerful her mate is, he also realizes that she is just as gifted and that it will take both of them working in harmony to rule their nation in BirthSign.
This is the sixth book in the La Patron series. Jasmine and Silas have persevered through so much and their love shines brighter than ever. Although this is book six, hold on, because the next book opens with Asia and her special connection to Jasmine. The story will continue…

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About the Author

Sydney Addae, a self-proclaimed readaholic and lover of most things paranomal, as long as it has a HEA. I enjoy people watching and traveling when I am not researching old tales to incorporate into my stories.
I live in the southeast and enjoy reading and writing all things paranormal. Nothing is more relaxing than cracking open a new adventure in a new world.
I love paranormal tales and characters in general and shifter stories in particular. Throw in the romantic element, strong Alpha characters who bend beneath the power of love and I’m over the moon. Sighs…

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It Had To Be You Book Tour & Giveaway


Genre: Contemporary Romance, RomCom
Publisher: Fire Quill Publishing
Publication Date: April 25, 2017
Pages: 200
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Emma Wyatt has had enough of her ex best friend and his lady killer ways. Gone was the sweet boy of her youth and in rides the womaniser. But this time he has ready gone and done it!

Oliver didn’t expect to be coupled with Emma. She was in an awkward situation and he couldn’t help the words that came out. She should be grateful, he saved her.

Now the whole town knows. And Emma is pissed! She’s going to kill him.

But a heated argument leads to a fiery moment of passion and suddenly the two are fighting an unlikely attraction that neither saw coming. But Oliver has a secret that could tear them apart…

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Excerpt

Emma walked into the Community Center Grand Hall and took in the scene before her. Women of all shapes, sizes, and generations milled around, cocktails in hand. Their hair was perfectly coifed and their makeup impeccable. The pheromones in the air were practically tangible.
A bachelor auction.
How the hell did I get roped into this? she mused.
“Isn’t this exciting?” Her best friend, Audrey, sipped a pink drink with a twirly straw, her eyes wide.
That’s how.
“If you call a bunch of horny women paying for a date with an equally horny man exciting, then no, it’s not particularly thrilling.”
“Oh, stop being Old Mother Hubbard. Besides, it’s for a good cause.”
Emma knew this, of course. The Crystal Valley Homeless Center was an up-and-coming organization that rehabilitated homeless people and helped them get their lives back on track. It wasn’t merely a halfway house. It was a place of refuge that offered people in need a hand up—not just a handout. Emma tried to volunteer at the Center as much as she could, and she knew firsthand how rewarding the experience was. The auction couldn’t have benefited a better cause.
“You and I both know it’s not the auction that’s got your knickers in a twist.” Audrey grinned devilishly as she tossed her dark hair over her shoulder. “It’s that hot hunk of junk over there.”
Emma followed her friend’s gaze to Oliver Kyle—the six-foot-two, sandy-haired Adonis… and the bane of her existence. Emma rolled her eyes, the familiar irritation settling in. “Now why would I let anything Oliver-related have anything to do with my panties?”
“Did I hear my name and your panties in the same sentence?” His deep voice reverberated over her shoulder and sent an unwelcome shiver up her spine.
“Speak of the devil and the demon appears.” She turned to face him and nearly slammed into the rock-solid mass of his chest. When did he get so close to her? Her eyes landed on those firm pecs and traveled up the thick column of his neck, past the deep dimple of his left cheek and into those smug honey-colored eyes.
She squinted at him, hackles raising like an old friend. “Personal space much?”
He leaned in, that overpowering male musk unique to Oliver surrounding her. “Just trying to get closer to those panties, sweetheart.”
The damn jerk had the audacity to wink at her. An actual wink!
“You, Oliver Kyle, are a man-whore and will never get within an inch of my panties.”
“Now, now, Emma, did you just issue a challenge? You know that feistiness just makes me want you more? I like your attitude problem.”
“I don’t have an attitude problem. You have a problem with my attitude. That’s not my problem.”
He gave an arrogant little chuckle.
Emma opened her mouth to unleash some choice words when Audrey stepped between them. “Okay, children, play nice now.”
Oliver reached out and twirled a strand of Emma’s hair around his finger, as though testing its texture. “This isn’t over, Goldilocks. I like a challenge.”
Emma was left to ogle his broad shoulders in his Boss suit before she could formulate a comeback. She fought the urge to stamp her foot like a petulant child.
“Wow, the sexual tension between you two is hot.”
“The only thing hot between us is my palm getting ready to slap his smug face.” Emma grabbed Audrey’s glass and downed her colorful drink.
“Uh huh. And denial is a river in Egypt. What happened between you two anyway?”
“He’s a jackass. A womanizing jackass who is always trying to make a pass at me, but I won’t become a prospect of his.”
“Oh honey, ten minutes with that man and I’m sure he would ruin you for any other man.”
Emma swatted her as they made their way toward a seat near the stage. The cloying smell of cheap perfume of overzealous women lingered in the air, giving Emma an instant headache. Or maybe that was compliments of Mr. Kyle. Audrey didn’t realize how close to home she had hit. Emma and Oliver had been friends during their youth. They had grown up in the same neighborhood and, despite the two-year age gap, had been practically joined at the hip. Till one day, soon after she turned thirteen, he had morphed into someone else and just stopped being her bestie. At first, he had pulled away and Emma had passed it off as part of growing up, but then he stopped being a sweet boy and became a hell-raiser.
Now, at age thirty-two, he was the quintessential bachelor. She wondered if he was up for auction tonight. Not that she would bid on him. No, she had her eye on that sexy fireman, Mike. Besides, she was sure half of Crystal Valley would outbid her even if she did. He was very popular with the ladies.
The lights dimmed suddenly and a hush of anticipation filled the auditorium as hordes of women scrambled to find vacant seats. She could practically feel Audrey bouncing in her chair beside her and although she wouldn’t admit it out loud, it was kind of thrilling. Emma might have a grudge against Oliver Kyle, but she sure did appreciate some of the other fine specimens on display.
The opening beats to Bruno Mars’ “Uptown Funk” started and the crowd went wild as each bachelor walked on stage, decked in suits and looking mouth-watering. The song was fitting; most of the singles were from the police or fire department. The hotness kept coming. How did Crystal Valley have so many hot, single men? Emma caught herself using her auction paddle to fan herself. The men did a few steps in sync to the beat, which greatly amused the audience, before standing single file, hands behind their backs, which only emphasized the chiseled chests and lean hips.
“Ladies and gentlemen,” the announcer’s deep voice rang out. “Give it up for the bachelors of Crystal Valleeeey!”
The applause was deafening. Emma found herself adding to the roar. The last time she checked, she was still a warm-blooded female.
“Thank you all for coming tonight and supporting this great cause. These gracious bachelors have volunteered their time and… um, services, to raise funds tonight.” A smattering of nervous giggles peppered the hall. He went on to talk more about the cause as the gents backed offstage.
“Without further ado, ladies, let’s get the ball rolling!”
An upbeat track sounded and one of Oliver’s police buddies strolled on stage, all muscle and sex appeal.
“Ooh la la,” Audrey cooed beside her, barely audible over the roar.
The bachelor walked down the ramp. Every woman alongside it tried to get her hands on some part of him, and he was soaking it up. He grinned devilishly as he swung his hips a few times before strutting back to center stage.
“We will start the bidding at one hundred dollars.”
Dozens of paddles went up. And kept going up as the price increased.
“Why don’t you bid on him?” Audrey nudged, her brown eyes dancing.
“He’s not my type.”
“What? Hot and delicious is everyone’s type. Plus, he has handcuffs.”
She did have a point there. Emma was ready to raise her paddle and place a bid when the announcer called a winner. She swung around in her seat to face the blonde mama who was going to enjoy officer sexy pants. She looked drunk off her ass and horny to boot. They were going to have one hell of a night.
The next beat was the ever-popular and brain-grinding “Gangnam Style.” Emma recognized the bachelor as one of the new kids at the fire department. He couldn’t be more than twenty-two, but he was filling out nicely. He slid out in nothing but his tighty-whities and a shirt. Very Tom Cruise–like. Till he started the “Gangnam Style” dance.
Emma threw her head back and howled. His moves were perfectly in sync and the crowd was lapping it up. Despite the ridiculousness of his act, he sold for nearly three thousand dollars. That date was going to be interesting, to say the least.
The strains of Nelly’s “Hot in Here” blared from the speakers and none other than sexy fireman Mike came strolling out in his fireproof suit—sans shirt.
“Hot tamale.” Emma swallowed. “He’s Hercules.” Mike had a golden tan accentuated by glistening oil slathered on his bare torso. His blond hair was messy and his blue eyes mischievous as he played right into crowd, taking off his shoulder straps and wiggling to the beat, teasing and taunting the ladies with overt sexuality.
Emma had to tear her eyes away when she realized that the bidding war had begun and were already a grand up. She raised her paddle but was immediately challenged by a brunette two rows down. Emma needed this. It had been two years since she had a decent date, and small-town gossip had it that Mike was a decent guy. He was stable, honest, faithful, and unbelievably sexy to boot. Emma was a traditional girl and wasn’t comfortable making the first move on a guy, but with the veil of the auction for charity, it was the perfect excuse to match herself up with Mike. She needed to pick up her life after the drama with the mayor’s son.
“We have one thousand five hundred dollars. Do we have one thousand six hundred?”
Emma raised her paddle. And so it continued till the bidding went up to two grand. Fireman Mike was sure noticing her now.
“Going once…”
Emma felt a grin spreading on her face. She was going to win.
“Going twice…”
“Three thousand dollars!” The brunette outbid her. How the hell?
Before Emma could recover, the announcer slammed his gavel and fireman Mike was gone, snatched from her clutches.
Audrey giggled beside her. “Well, that was entertaining.”
Emma huffed. “How embarrassing! Now everyone knows I got a thing for the fireman god.”
“Trust me. Nobody is noticing anything except the male hotness here tonight.”
“I hope so.” She signaled the waiter for another cocktail. She needed a drink to overcome the mortification.
The evening passed with suitor after suitor gracing the stage, and each time the adoration never dimmed. From scantily clad to suave, funny to serious, the men were different in their own right. Yet none of the others appealed to her enough to raise her paddle again.
She was about to call it a night when the emcee announced the last bid for the night. A fun tune sounded and Emma sat up, wondering who would be gracing the stage. She felt her jaw go slack when the thorn in her side came out on stage, still in his Boss suit. His shirt was unbuttoned beneath his suit jacket, and the peekaboo of his bronze torso flirted with every woman in the auditorium. His mirrored aviators sat on the bridge of his nose, shielding what she was sure was a sex-promised gaze. His sandy hair was mussed up like he had run his hands through it, or more likely some woman had. His pants curved his strong buttocks, emphasizing the muscle and strength. Emma felt her throat go dry. The music played a sexy tune and, almost in slow motion, Oliver put his hand in his pants pocket, moving aside his coat and shirt and revealing an honest-to-God eight-pack.
The crowd went wild. Emma coughed. When the hell did he get those? She didn’t even know eight-packs existed, and here he was baring those washboard abs like he was born with them. His lips tilted in a sexy grin, revealing that naughty dimple.
“Ladies and gentlemen, let’s start the bidding at one hundred dollars!”
Paddles went up all around the room. Emma took a sweep through at the faces that could potentially be sharing Oliver’s bed tonight. Just about everyone bid, including the more vibrant male variety of Crystal Valley. Emma smiled at that, knowing that would throw the smug playboy for a loop.
The response was loud. The bidding was fast and quick, and already up to three thousand dollars. Mr. Kyle was clearly in demand. It looked like Malibu Barbie was going to win him after all.
“Five thousand dollars!”
The crowd was stunned into silence at the sudden bid. The announcer called it. And looked right at Emma.
Huh?
She turned to Audrey, then noticed that she had grabbed Emma’s arm, paddle in hand, and bid. Audrey grinned widely and shrugged nonchalantly.
Emma turned back to the stage, her face draining of color as she stared at Oliver, who looked like the Cheshire cat.
“What have you done?” she whispered.

About the Author


Melissa Kate is a self-confessed book-a-holic who lives in a small town along the coast in sunny South Africa. She writes contemporary romance with quirky characters and witty banter; a true romantic at heart, she loves the moment of falling in love. Her pet Beagle and maniacal lovebird keep her company while writing and often inspire senseless moments in her stories.

When she’s not furiously tapping away on her laptop, Melissa can be found laughing away with her husband (who happens to be her pre-school sweetheart… you just know there’s a story there) or scouring online stores for additions to her ever growing stiletto collection (ehm addiction).

She balances her day job and conjuring up new romantic tales with a local personal blog with arb ramblings about her life in Durban.

Connect with Melissa

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Shadyia Ascendant Book Tour & Giveaway


Genre: Epic Fantasy, Romance
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2017
Pages: 461
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Forbidden Romance in an Age of Veiled Magic!

When Shadyia, a courtesan of the Silver Rose, violates the tenets of the Sisterhood, she is commanded by her madam to appease an order of vicious crusaders by seducing a powerful magician masquerading as a wealthy scholar.

Caught between an ancient conflict of Order and Chaos, Shadyia and her companions must descend beneath the Silver Rose into a labyrinth of deadly traps and shadowy guardians. For only there can she defy the crusaders who threaten her sorority and avert the prophecy of a darkness that returns to consume the world.

Excerpt

Shadyia backed away from the window and glanced at the madam and her two mistresses. Hopefully, someone would tell her what all this was about—and why she, of all the sisters, had been invited to bear witness. Sybaris knelt and loosened a stiletto sheathed in a boot. Uttering grim predictions, the raven-haired Makayla paced, gripping the sides of her black gown.
Madam Amrita turned from the window. “Ladies, please wait for me at the back doors to the audience. I’ll be with you shortly.”
They bowed and departed.
The madam gathered her dark brown hair, streaked with gray, behind her shoulders. “I believe I know why Lord Dunstan is here. He’s come for you, Sister.”
Shadyia blinked. There must be some mistake. Dunstan wasn’t one of her coins; he wasn’t any sister’s coin. The madam forbid servicing House Mienhard. No amount of silver, she often schooled them, was worth the peril of learning the secrets of the king’s house.
“For me? Why?”
“You are the favorite of Lord William Querry. This afternoon at the Diamond, the horse owned by William defeated the horse owned by Lord Dunstan. That race was very important to Dunstan, and he is furious.”
Shadyia stared hard at her madam. The ringing bells, scrambling sisters, Sybaris appearing as if she were moments from wading into battle—all this over a horse race? Then again, nobles obsessed over such things, but what had she herself to do with—
A chill seized her. Dunstan killed men who offended him, but for women he was known to pursue a different form of amusement.
“Dunstan will punish William Querry by commanding his guard to rape and beat me.”
“Correct,” Amrita said. “That is why you must hide. Don’t go to your quarters. He may know where that is. I suggest one of the storerooms beneath the kitchens. Go now and avoid the east vestibule.” She turned to leave.
Madam, wait. Mistress Sybaris said the wolfguard knows I’m here.”
Amrita stopped. “I’ll tell him you’re not,” she said over her shoulder. “I’ll tell him you are servicing a coin and are away from the palace.”
“Dunstan will never believe you over his guard. Even if he does, he’ll just choose another sister.”
Amrita faced her. “Unlikely. To beat another would fail to send the message he desires to William Querry.”
“But it would punish you for denying his wrath. Madam, this is Dunstan Mienhard. You were with me at the plaza last month. Did he strike you as a man who will just walk away on your word alone?”
She hoped her point had hammered home. Just the month before, Dunstan had accepted a challenge from a retired knight-general, a veteran of numerous campaigns and a grandfather of sixteen. The stodgy general had little choice but to demand a duel when Lord Dunstan called him a coward. Duels were a common form of entertainment for the gentry, and seldom to the death, so quite a crowd had gathered to bear witness, Amrita and Shadyia among them. They’d watched in shock as Dunstan repeatedly sliced the elderly knight-general and finished him with a piercing stab to the throat. ‘Cowards deserve no quarter,’
Dunstan had said, using a white cloth to wipe the general’s blood off his blacksteel sword.
“What is your concern?” the madam asked.
“If Dunstan has come for me,” Shadyia answered, tapping her chest, “then it is I who should deal with him.” She didn’t know exactly how she would deal with him, but another sister would not suffer in her stead.
Amrita studied her for a moment, but Shadyia couldn’t tell if her madam’s thoughts were filled with admiration or doubt. “Very well,” she said at last. “Take your place in the audience, but keep your hood low and blend in with the others. You are not to reveal yourself until I command it. Understood?”
“Yes, Madam.”
Amrita walked toward the back steps to the audience. Shadyia pulled up the hood on her short sapphire dress, dashed from the ballroom and hurried down the grand stairs to White Hall. She followed the last of her sisters into the audience and closed the doors behind her. Lanterns on hooks pooled light throughout the domed, circular chamber. Hood pulled low, Shadyia leaned against a pillar and crossed her arms above her waist. The others had taken various postures meant to distract, lure and entice, their faces partly hidden under low hoods. Red-haired Deresi, a sister from Shadyia’s own circle, looked particularly tempting as she sat on the lip of the fountain, her fingers playing in the rippling water and her legs parted just enough to tease a man’s attention.
The doors to the Welcome Hall thundered open and Lord Dunstan entered. He swept his gaze over the chamber, his hand resting on the pommel of his sword, and made for the madam’s chair. His wolfguard slammed the doors in the face their guardian sister escort, and then turned their backs to better observe their master. Dunstan halted before the single-step dais and scowled up at the statue of Luun standing protectively behind the madam’s chair. He removed his hat and cast it over the hand of the statue that held the silver rose.
Shadyia seethed. Luun was more than the sister’s patroness; she was an emblem of feminine strength and dignity—one that Dunstan had reduced to a rack for his hat.
The rear doors to the chamber opened. Chin elevated, shoulders back and one hand placed upon the other at waist-level, Madam Amrita entered with Mistress Sybaris and Mistress Makayla a few steps behind.
Lord Dunstan pivoted toward the approaching women, grasped his blacksteel longsword and tugged it within reach. Shadyia furrowed her brow. Was he actually afraid of the madam? Ah, of course. She grinned beneath her hood. His hilt-grip was meant for Sybaris. The mistress of guardians had a fearsome reputation.
Holding the hem of her elaborate pearl gown, Amrita dipped, her gaze lowered. Sybaris and Makayla did likewise.
“Lord Dunstan, you honor my house,” Amrita said, rising.
Dunstan puffed his cheeks behind a blond mustache. “That’s not saying much.” He removed his riding coat and flung it across the chair. Their backs still to the main doors, his wolfguard grinned like jackals over a fresh kill. Shadyia ground her teeth. The pig! He would not even allow the madam her place of honor.
“How may I be of service?” Amrita asked with—remarkably—no hint of outrage in her voice.
Dunstan faced her. “Service? I thought you didn’t service House Mienhard.”
“As a matter of policy, my lord.”
“Your girls suck half the cocks in Anderholm, but the king’s house isn’t good enough for them?”
“Take no offense, my lord. Even the most skilled courtesan can conceive a child. With any other house we are free to terminate the seed, but if the house that straddles a sister also sits upon the throne, this…solution…is inappropriate.”
Shadyia tensed as Dunstan took a step toward Amrita. “I am offended you think me fool enough to accept that excuse. But it is of no matter.” He addressed the room. “This policy ends tonight. I require one of your girls, the favorite of Querry’s third son, William. She goes by the name Shadyia. Bring her to my guard at once.”
“I’m sorry, my lord, but Sister Shadyia is away from the Silver Rose until tomorrow.”
Dunstan rounded on Amrita and struck her across her face. She cried out, fell back and only Sybaris’s reflexes kept her head from smacking the floor. Gasps erupted from the sisters about the chamber as Shadyia pushed against her pillar, her hands becoming fists.
Dunstan rubbed his knuckles in the palm of his hand. “Do not lie to me, whore. I know she’s here. Bring her to me at once.”
Sybaris reached back to her boot—but the madam caught her wrist. “She is not, sire. I swear it. She lies with her client, Lord Martel—”
Amrita cried out as Dunstan kicked her hip with a steel-tipped boot and reached for his sword.
Enough! Shadyia swept the hood off her gown. Amrita would not suffer on her behalf. No one would. She stepped to the center of the room. “My lord, I am here!”
The wolfguard rushed forward and seized her arms. Amrita shot her a seething look, but changed to an expression of pleading as Dunstan glared back down at her. “Mercy, Lord. She’s just a girl.”
Dunstan sneered, a look of victory in his eyes. “She’s no girl. And, from the way William boasted, he’s quite taken with her.” He turned his vulturous gaze on Shadyia and followed her curves. “But, after my men are finished, he won’t find her so attractive.”
Disgust nearly forced her to twist away, but she closed her mind to Dunstan’s words. Think. Don’t struggle. The calloused hands clamped on her biceps offered no hope for escape. What could she do?

 
Genre: 
Epic Fantasy, Romance
Publication Date: March 31, 2017
Pages: 346
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Shadyia’s Adventure Continues!

‘I will never leave you, and I will always come for you.’
Shadyia’s vow to her lover is put to the test when the Innocenti rise and envelope the sisterhood she adores.

As the magician she aided hunts for the path to an ancient city, the new madam of the Silver Rose strives to please the evil that has promised, upon its freedom, to make her a queen.

Meanwhile, the adviser to the Innocenti prepares the final stage of his strategy to crush the faith of the old gods. He needs but a bit of magic to carry out his ultimate plan.

Magicians. Zealots. Madams. Whores. It’s all the same to he who waits within the enchanted box. Soon he will unleash his servants, and every horror of the abyss will once again consume humanity.

Excerpt

IN THE SHADOW of the Black Tower, Shadyia nudged the shoulder of the scruffy, tired woman strolling by her side. When Deresi turned her head, she offered her a spirited wave. Hello, my sweet friend. They both needed a hot bath and a good night’s rest, but that hardly mattered. Deresi was alive. They had each survived the horrors of Mirrikh’s labyrinth with whole skins and sound minds.
Deresi crossed her eyes and stuck out the tip of her tongue.
Shadyia shifted her attention to the damp street. Yes, I know. I should stop gawking at you. She couldn’t help it. Her fingers ached to get lost in the tangles of Deresi’s red curls; her ears yearned for the sounds of Deresi’s passion, and her skin craved the warmth they had not shared often enough. I almost lost you. The death they had faced during the past two days made her crave another night, like the smallest fox in a litter peering at the last quail egg. Words Shadyia had spoken that morning they lay entwined in arms, legs and blankets—the morning Deresi had pledged her love—coursed through Shadyia’s veins and spurred her heart to beat. I will never leave you, and I will always come for you. Shadyia had never made such a promise to anyone before.
She yanked her thoughts from the past and listened in on the men walking a few paces in front of her. Aaron was asking his apprentice what it had been like to hear Verthandi’s voice in his thoughts.
“I didn’t know it was his voice,” Benjamin replied. “I thought it was mine.”
Aaron swept a hand through his graying hair and narrowed his gaze at the young man. “But you had no idea how to open the tower. Didn’t it seem odd to you that these thoughts were in your head?”
Benjamin shrugged. “It does now. At the time, I thought I was just guessing, experimenting. Do this, turn that, push, pull—and then the doors opened. I couldn’t believe it.”
Shadyia seized the pommel of her blacksteel sword. She couldn’t believe Benjamin had left Janell outside while he bumbled around inside the Black Tower. Janell may be a fellow sister of the Silver Rose, but for all of Madam Amrita’s training, she was a mewling kitten lost in a rainstorm. Anderholm was no city to walk about alone, even for a veteran with a drawn sword and a stern gaze on every dark alley. Shadyia tamped down her anger. If Benjamin hadn’t opened the doors of the tower and entered, she, Deresi and Aaron would now be facing a slow death from thirst and starvation in Mirrikh’s oubliette, the place the ancient magician had used to forget people who had angered him.
Aaron led them north. They followed the smooth stones of Queen’s Way, the scrape of their footfalls the only sounds in the damp streets. Shadyia glanced around. Too quiet. Today was the second day of Samprina and so the citizens were either fasting in their homes or visiting relatives in the country, but the silence didn’t feel right. Anderholm was a city of noise. The clap of hooves, the roll of wagons, merchants bellowing over one another, armed guards hollering to clear a path for a snobbish lord on horseback, the squeal of orphaned children, the bark of dogs—chaos was the lifeblood of Anderholm. Quiet did not become the trade capitol of the northern realms.
“Here, this way.” Aaron turned them down a long alley between the Ministry of Art and a pottery warehouse. As Shadyia recalled, the alley ended at the Rum Barrel Inn near the Bridge of Swans. Aaron’s Featherquill Manor, packed with the historical books he had written over his many centuries, was a short walk up a winding road past the other mansions in the Artisan Quarter. When they arrived, he had promised to treat them to an evening of relaxing and recovering. Shadyia blew a gust through her lips at the thought. After two days and a night in the dark, twisting halls of labyrinth, pits of spikes hidden under false floors and shadow beasts that drained the life from their victims, she craved a quiet evening in Deresi’s arms more than all the gold in Anderholm. I just hope Janell made it back there without trouble.
Midway through the alley, a single-horse cart, driven by two cloaked men, rolled toward them. Shadyia and the others flattened themselves against the wall. She turned her head as it passed. Some mortified soul lay wrapped in a heavy cloth in the back of the cart. Likely the men were gravediggers on their way to—The corpse! Shadyia recognized its white boots.
“Stop that cart!”
The driver snapped his reins against the horse as Aaron grabbed the air and twisted his fist. The wheels locked and dragged until the cart screeched to a halt. The driver lashed his reins again, but the horse only reared. The men, one thin and the other large, jumped back off the bench, stepped around the wrapped figure and dropped to the street. They threw open their cloaks and pulled out a pair of long knives. Shadyia drew her blacksteel sword as she and Aaron met them halfway. Aaron twisted his hands, palms outward, and the fat one was hurled against the wall by an unseen force. The other stood dumbfounded until Shadyia knocked the knife out of his hand with a downward slash and pressed the tip of her sword under his chin.
“Over there, move,” she said, urging the driver, a man with dark lines tattooed on half his face, to stand next to his fat companion. He lifted his hands in surrender and complied.
The force holding the large man released, but Shadyia moved the tip and pricked the fleshy pouch under his chin. “Drop the knife.”
The knife clattered to the street and the fat man lifted his portly arms.
“Dee, check the cart.”
Deresi snatched the thin man’s knife off the ground and leaped into the cart. Shadyia heard her cut the ropes. She glanced down the alley to make sure no others were coming, but only Benjamin stood there, ringing his hands and looking as if he were not sure what he should do.
Silence from the cart drove Shadyia to risk a glance. Deresi was sitting back on her heels, her shoulders slumped, staring down at the person she had partly exposed beneath the cloth. “Dee, who is it? Is it Janell?”
Deresi’s mouth moved but no sound came out. “I…”
What’s wrong with her? “Dee!”
“I can’t tell!” Deresi briefly covered her lips with trembling fingers. “I think it is.”
Benjamin charged, jolting Shadyia as he passed, and leaped into the cart.
A freezing wave passed over Shadyia. Deresi couldn’t tell? She glanced at Aaron, who had remained at her side, then faced the portly man and jabbed him with the tip. “What did you do to her?”
The fat man’s jaw shuddered and a drop of blood leaked down his pouch. “She asked to join us.”
Shadyia nearly stabbed him again when Benjamin’s wail echoed along the alley. “Mentor, please help!”
Aaron rushed the cart as Shadyia coiled back her sword, daring either man to move. She glanced as Aaron further pulled open the cloth, stained dark red on the inside, to reveal a naked body. Benjamin wailed anew as Aaron placed a hand on her forehead. Deresi scooted back into the corner of the cart and stared at Janell, as motionless as one posing for a sculpture.
Benjamin sobbed. “What have they done to her?”
“She’s alive,” Aaron said.
Movement from the tattooed man caught Shadyia’s attention. His hands came down—back!—and she stabbed deep in his shoulder.
He snarled, reeled and fell against the wall, his hand over the wound. “You bitch.” He checked the blood on his fingers.“Next time it will be your eye.”
A bellow of anguish tore Shadyia from the men. Aaron fell off the cart, hit the cobbled stones hard, and rolled on the ground. Benjamin called his name and jumped down as Deresi stood high on her knees, her face pale.
Benjamin kneeled and grabbed Aaron by the shoulders. “Mentor, what’s wrong, what’s happened?”
Aaron knocked the hands away and rolled on his side, agony twisting his face. He howled and thrashed as if someone had set fire to his clothing. Shadyia glared at the men. Had they done something? No. They stood with gaping mouths and baffled stares.
His hands covering his face, Aaron seemed to bring his torment under control. He sat up and turned eyes of pure rage on Shadyia’s prisoners. “Innocenti. They mutilated her,” he said through seething gasps. “That one and that one. There was a third, but he’s not here. They raped and tortured her for hours.”
He pushed Benjamin back, rolled to his feet, and brought his hands up as if he were lifting the end of a table. The men slammed against the wall and slid up until their feet dangled.
“Vile warlock,” the tattooed one said then spat. “Fate will be your judge.”

About the Author


The Shadyia Ascendant Book Series is the kind of fantasy book I wanted to read, but could never find. Sexy, powerful, positive.
The heroes are beaten, but are never broken.
Although this is a medieval setting (more or less 15th century Renaissance), the characters don’t scratch at fleas and trug through the book ass-deap in mud and blood and disease. I’m sure all that is accurate, but I never wanted to read about it.
I wanted magic that is rare, women that are bold and beautiful, mysterious magicians with a hidden agenda, and gods that move mortals about like pieces on a chessboard. That’s the book I wanted.
I was inspired by the fantasy writer David Gemmell in terms of pace. When you read one of his books, you get your money’s worth. He won’t spend eleven chapters with this characters arguing in a castle. The term “I could never put it down” fits a Gemmell book perfectly, and it’s what I have striven to accomplish in the Shadyia Ascendant series.
Get ready for a sexy adventure you won’t soon forget!
A graduate in history, specializing in Central-European history, I’m an avid computer gamer, reader enthusiast, and teacher of English as a foreign language. I’m American and currently reside in Poland.

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A Honeyed Light Book Tour & Giveaway

 
Genre: 
Contemporary Romance, M/M, GLBT
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Publication Date: December 14, 2016
Pages: 128
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Kunal, relative newcomer to the strange town of Harmony, has his hands full preparing for Diwali. That should be enough to keep anyone’s mind preoccupied, but Kunal can’t really ignore that he’s nearly thirty, single, and still buried in the closet.

Out of town at a gay club one night, he bumps into Oscar, proprietor of Harmony’s only sex shop, and figures his secret is now officially out. What he doesn’t expect is a slow seduction, or to have to decide what it is he really wants in life.

When the first pretty-boy blond came over his way, Kunal tightened his hand around his drink and shook his head. “No, thanks, I’m meeting someone.” The lie slipped out easily, but it didn’t work as expected.

The young man introduced himself as Drew, smiled wider, and leaned closer. “Three’s company.”

“Sorry,” he replied, his voice tight. “Not into that.”

Drew shrugged and walked away, tossing a “your loss,” over his shoulder. Kunal tuned back to his drink, wondering why he’d bothered to come out tonight if he was just going to turn down sure things and waste money on alcohol.

He decided to call it an early night. After paying his tab, he got up to leave, vacating his seat at the bar to the man who’d just approached. “All yours,” Kunal said. “I was just leaving.”

“Well, that’s a shame. Here I was about to ask to buy you a drink.”

Kunal paused to look at who was speaking and froze. He was right. It was just a matter of time before he ran into someone he knew. Someone from Harmony. Someone who could recognize him. Dammit, the reason he came here was so he wouldn’t run into people from Harmony. So of course, not only did he bump into someone he knew, it had to be Oscar Murro, local proprietor of things Kunal couldn’t even begin to mention. It wasn’t as though he’d even been in Oscar’s shop, but he knew what was sold there. And he knew who Oscar Murro was. In a town like Harmony, some people stood out.

Oscar was not just the sole Filipino man in Harmony, he was also one of the most attractive men in town, period. Kunal had noticed, and now he was worried Oscar had noticed him noticing.

*~*~*

Oscar blinked as the guy turned around. He’d seen him from behind and liked what he saw. There was something familiar about the bit of profile he could see, but he didn’t expect to recognize the guy when he turned around. He didn’t expect it to be Kunal Sadaram, of all people. He didn’t bother to ask the obvious question—what Kunal was doing here. He had the same reasons Oscar did. So instead of calling attention to the surprise, Oscar just smiled. “So is that a yes or a no?”

Kunal swallowed, his eyes a little wild. “Yes or no?”

“The drink. Yes or no?”

Kunal’s eyes widened, panic in them. “I was just leaving,” he repeated, moving to sidestep Oscar.

“So that’s a no? Shame. I never get a chance to talk to you in town.”

Kunal stopped in his tracks, turning back to look at Oscar. “Uh, about that…”

Oscar nodded. “I know. You don’t want anyone in Harmony knowing you were here. Kunal, you know what kind of shop I run, right? I know how to keep secrets.”

Kunal exhaled. “Thank you. But uh, I really am heading out. Thanks for the offer but…” Kunal trailed off, and without finishing his sentence, slipped into the crowd.

Oscar watched his retreat with a thoughtful expression then shrugged. Kunal’s presence confirmed something Oscar had already suspected—hell he’d even speculated-slash- hoped with Olli, when he’d first noticed the handsome new addition to Harmony—but it had still been a surprise to see him here at all.

But it also confirmed something else: Kunal Sadaram was deep in the closet, and it didn’t seem like he was ready to let anyone in Harmony know.


Freddie Milano lives with her partner-in-crime, two adorable and devilish cats, and far more ideas than she really has time to set down on (electronic) paper. She’s been writing since she could hold a pen, though most of the embarrassing stories thankfully never made in onto the internet, and can stay safely buried.

She loves wine, Korean pop music, tea, chocolate, coffee, mythology, and both video and tabletop gaming. An ESFJ surrounded by introverts, Freddie has learned the art of socialization in moderation. Besides, staying in just leaves her more time to write.

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Three Seconds to Legend Book Tour & Giveaway

 
Genre: 
Wrestling, Romance, Adventure
Publication Date: May 12, 2014
Pages: 192 pages
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About the Book

WHEN THE OPENING BELL RINGS, A NEW RING LEGEND BEGINS!

Leilana Ito always knew her family had a long history in the wrestling world but she never knew how much had been kept secret from her. Wanting to continue her family’s legacy in the ring, she was shocked when her father adamantly refused to let her proceed. Unable to deny the fighting spirit in her heart, Leilana did the unthinkable and defied her father’s wishes, having no idea what terrible series of events she had begun.

Dana Harding was in the twilight of her wrestling career, striving for one last chance at glory in the regional circuit. Despite juggling two children as a single mother and the hard life of the road, Dana had one last chance to win championship gold and thought she would do anything to attain that. Every dirty trick in the book was on the table, as long as it took place in the squared circle.

Now, in the heart of Oklahoma, the rookie with an unknown past hunting her and the veteran heel with nothing to lose are about to meet in the ring. Their clash will bind them and wrap them up in corporate machinations, family rivalries, and secrets of the past coming back to life to threaten both women and everything they hold dear.
In the midst of it all, will Leilana succumb to her family’s past or find the strength to follow her dreams? Will Dana stay the infamous heel or discover something in her heart she didn’t even know she had?

Book 2

 
Genre: 
Wrestling, Romance, Adventure
Publication Date: September 27, 2014
Pages: 242
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About the Book

LOST LOVES AND DEADLY LABORS, ALL ARE TOLD BY THE TALE OF THE TAPE!

Nothing remains constant in the tumultuous world of pro wrestling! On the eve of their victory over the most powerful family in the wrestling world, Leilana Ito and Dana Harding look forward to a bright future but that perfect ending is snatched away when Leilana disappears. Desperate to find her, Dana starts a country-wide search, spurred on by both friendship and something stronger: love!

Meanwhile, Leilana faces a gauntlet of rigged matches, hidden spies, and psychological torture as a ‘guest’ of the Von Richters in Los Vegas. Trapped in a city where anything goes, money talks, and no one asks questions, Leilana puts it all on the line in a ring where each match could be her last.

The clock is ticking. Can Dana find the woman she loves before it’s too late? Can Leilana endure each deadly labor long enough to be saved? Even if they find each other, will Dana find her love to be reciprocated or unrequited?

Book 3

 
Genre: 
Wrestling, Romance, Adventure
Publication Date: April 15, 2015
Pages: 384
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About the Book

At the end of the championship quest, there lies the final match: The Twelfth Labor!
Hardened by a gauntlet of challenges, wrestler Leilana Ito is a rookie no longer as she nears her ultimate goal: completing her labors and winning freedom from the Von Richter sisters, mistresses of the wrestling world.

However, the storm is fiercest before the calm and Leilana’s most dangerous challenges lie ahead. Fearsome opponents, devious traps, and lies from all sides threaten to put an end not only Leilana but her friends and family. Joined by fellow wrestler and newfound love, Dana Harding, and a motley alliance of allies, Leilana struggles on towards her greatest fight, the final duel, the Twelfth Labor!

The Twelfth Labor is the no-holds-barred conclusion to the pro-wrestling action/adventure drama of Three Seconds to Legend!

About the Author

 J. B. Garner was born in Baltimore, MD on December 1, 1976, the youngest of three children. While still young, the family moved to Peachtree City, GA. His parents always encouraged his creative side and J. B. began writing and drawing from an early age. Though considered talented by his teachers, he never fully applied himself and bounced through high school and into college at the Georgia Institute of Technology. During his freshman year, his father died suddenly.
Grief and lack of purpose caused J. B. to drop out of school. If not for a few close friends, he might have dropped out of life as well. Taken in by his friends and given a second chance, J. B. matured, applied himself, and finally, after over a decade of hard work, is now back to doing what he loves the most: writing.

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Under Her Wings Book Tour & Giveaway

 
Genre: 
Contemporary Romance
Publication Date: August 1, 2016
Pages: 440
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About the Book

Wishing for death while living through hell, Gabriella is rescued off the rocks of a Scottish loch at the lowest moment of her life by the hot, humorous Edward and the sexy, staid Liam. The two men nurse the despondent woman back to health while teaching her how to pick up the pieces of her life. Both are captivated by her and vie for her attention.

Friendships are formed and secrets revealed. One man will become her lover, while the other becomes her best friend. Together, they have a past they cannot change, a present they must live through, and a future yet to be discovered. However, every time things appear to settle down for the trio, fate deals another blow, testing their trust and faith in each other and the love they have created.

Gabriella discovers the beauty of Scotland and life anew as she learns that trust is a two-way street that can either strengthen bonds or destroy relationships. Will she accept all that she learns or continue to believe she is betraying the memories she ran from?

Excerpt

At the beach, Gabriella searched for a fist-sized stone. There weren’t a lot of rocks on this beautiful stretch of beach, but she managed to find the one she needed.
She turned to the guys and showed it to them. “I need fourteen more like this.”
“What are we doing with them?” Liam asked.
“We are gathering healing stones. We’re going to use the power of words to heal the wounds we have caused. I use this strategy with the families I work with to create positive dialogue.”
Liam had bared his soul to her over the last few weeks, and he was still raw from it, now feeling overwhelmed with anger after the earlier incident. He loved Edward like a brother, but right now, he wasn’t so sure he could have an open dialogue with him. He couldn’t help feeling like talking wasn’t going to help. Punching the living fucking shit out of Edward would. Regardless, he would try since it was important to Gabriella.
Once they had collected the rocks, Gabriella sat and wrote on each one then placed them in a basket while the men gathered driftwood. Once they had enough, they started a fire then sat in some beach chairs, facing each other.
“In the basket, I have placed all fifteen healing rocks. When it is your turn, I want you to remove one rock, read the word, and then decide how the word affects you, or you can pass the rock to someone else and find out how the word affects them. Each of us will end up with five rocks, so be careful what you give away; the next word might be more revealing. Your answers have to be from the heart and honest. After you are finished, we move on. No comments are needed; just quiet reflection. Who wants to go first?”
She was blown away that these big, strong, beautiful men were allowing her to try to get inside their hearts and minds. She respected that she didn’t have to force them, and it spoke volumes about their character.
“Okay, baby, pass me the basket and let’s do this,” Liam volunteered, taking the heavy basket and digging into the middle of the stones. He pulled out a rock, turned it over, and read the word out loud. “Heal. Wow, okay, give me a minute to get my thoughts together.” Liam sat quietly for almost five minutes, thinking. “This is way harder than I even imagined. One word can mean so many things.
“Okay, let me start by saying that all three of us have suffered loss, and if I am going to be totally honest, none of us are healed. Healing takes time. Lots of time. I believe Gabriella has started to heal my heart by understanding my past and not judging me. Edward, I can only hope, when the time is right, some smart-mouth, little lass will waltz into your life and turn it upside down. And, when she comes, you, too, are going to have to allow her a chance to help you heal.”
“Well, that’s interesting,” Edward said, shocked to hear how Liam felt. “If I believed someone as incredible as Gabriella would come into my life and heal me, I would welcome her with open arms.” Edward cleared his throat, realizing the importance of Liam’s statement. “I’ll go next. Pass the basket.”
Edward took the basket and chose the rock on top. He turned it over and read out loud, “Fear.” He pondered the word for a few moments then passed the rock to Gabriella, seeing the scrapes he had caused. He kissed the top of both her hands then said, “Sorry, sweetheart. I don’t know how I am going to make it up to you, but I was terrified I was going lose you, and I had to stop you.”
“You don’t have to make it up to me. I’m not going anywhere.” As she shuffled the rock from hand to hand, she remarked, “Somehow, I knew I would get this one.” She took a moment to gather her thoughts. “I overreacted today because of fear.”

Other Books in the Series

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Can the misfits of society considered substandard and their child/ youth worker teach a broken man that has no heart how to love? Can love and trust be taught? Ryder has what every person strives for yet it isn’t worth having if you have no one to share it with.

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Can Caden put aside all of the hurt he suffered because of Dakota while trying to save her life? Dakota could die but she needs answers before she goes. Can she trust the man she thought would always be hers? Fate has a way of making you see the truth.

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About the Author


Anne Marie Citro grew born and raised in the greater Toronto area of Ontario, Canada. She grew up in a large, loving family. Anne Marie is married to a very patient man. He is the love of her life. They have four very cool sons, and the girls they brought into their family that have become daughters of her heart. She has been blessed enough to finally have a beautiful granddaughter after four sons. She has her own personal gaggle of girlfriends, who enrich her life on a daily basis and make her laugh. Caesar Friday is her favorite day of the week. Caesars with the girls and date night with her hubby. She works with special-needs teenagers, that have taught her how to appreciate life and see it through gentler eyes.

Anne Marie was encouraged by her husband to follow her lifelong dream to write. She loves the characters that take over imagination and haunts her dreams. She loves the arts and she has tried her hand at painting, wood sculpting, chainsaw carving, wood burning, metal and wire sculptures. Yes, her husband is a very patient man! Anne Marie is an avid reader and enjoys about three books per week. But nothing makes her happier then riding on the back of her husband’s Harley and throwing her arms out and feeling the wind race by. Anne Marie and her husband take a few weeks every year to travel to spectacular destination around the world. Anne Marie is excited and can’t wait to see what the next chapter holds for her life.

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The Wizard Killer Book Tour & Giveaway

Book 1


Genre: Post Apocalyptic, Fantasy
Publisher: ADZO Publishing
Publication Date: April 28, 2016
Pages: 140
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A world once at the height of magical technology and social order has collapsed. How and why are the least of the wizard killer’s worries.

Leaning my bloody head against the back of the crashed levitating carriage, I flex my cramped fingers. With a renewed grip on the mana-pistol, I steal a quick breath. The others better wake up fast, otherwise we’re all going to burn.

Written using a binge-TV show model, Season 1 contains 20 pulse-pounding episodes, and is an all new side to best-selling YA author, Adam Dreece.

“Madmax meets Lord of the Rings” – Goodreads.com

Book 2


Genre: Post Apocalyptic, Fantasy
Publisher: ADZO Publishing
Publication Date: April 25, 2017
Pages: 118
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Kill me with a floating city? You got my attention. But then steal from me and try to burn me alive? You got me thinking.

I think I’m going to find your yigging, walking carcass and introduce it to two friends of mine: pain and vengeance.

By the way, I borrowed a lightning rifle. Don’t worry, I’ll return it… empty.

See you soon,
The Wizard Killer

Season Two kicks everything up a notch with 22 all-new, action-packed episodes!

The sunlight from the door stops two feet into the room with no rhyme nor reason. Stepping into the room, I close the door and take my hat off.
I stand quietly, listening to the creak of the floorboards under me, waiting for my eyes to adjust. The room seems barren, except for a counter a few feet away.
“Gah… that sound.” I put a finger in my ear and give it a good shake.
A silhouette appears behind the empty counter. “These are dangerous times,” it says, the voice soft and melodic.
The head turns and I’m thrown off. It’s like staring at a star-filled night sky.
Swallowing nervously, I nod. “You’re the last of the free librarians I take it.”
There’s a scream outside, followed by another.
My hands twist my hat, and I stare at the door. “I’m…” I turn and face the librarian. “I’m told you’ll have an answer for me. Though, I hate to say it, I wasn’t told what the question was.”
“The answer is a yes. A wizard can be killed through means other than simply time and frailty of the body. There’s a High Acolyte who knows… in Banareal. He’s learned the secret experiments of his master, the Wizard of Banareal. The Wizard suspects him of treachery. It won’t be long before the High Acolyte is arrested and tortured.”
“Are we supposed to get him before he’s arrested? After?” I don’t even know what I’m talking about. Staring at the floor, an image comes to me. “Old man. Is he an old man?”
I can feel her staring at me; I’ve thrown her off.
“The High Acolyte will be alive for some time, though barely. The Wizard will experiment on him, to see if it’s possible to make an acolyte into a weslek.”
“So, we need to get him out?”
“The wards won’t allow him to leave the laboratory alive.”
I glare at the librarian. “How is this helpful?”
Several gunshots go off on the other side of the door. It’s followed by screeches and a wave of that bone-chattering sound.
“I must go,” says the librarian, pushing open a door at the back, the room filling with sunlight.
Wincing and turning away, I raise a hand. “If I follow what you’re saying, then we need to get him out of there. How do we do that?”
“Take his life from him then give it back. There are a few who can craft such magical weapons. You’ll need to be careful, and make it discreet.”
“Like one of the soldiers’ short swords?”
I wish she had an expression; I can’t tell if she’s agreeing or staring me like an idiot.
“We are out of time.” She exits and the back door closes, leaving me standing in the dark.
The screams outnumber the gunshots. There’s that clicking sound coming from everywhere, even above me somewhere.
I crack the door open a bit and look. The scene doesn’t make sense, people shooting at nothing and being ripped apart by nothing.
Without thinking, my hand goes into one of the long coat pockets and pulls out an orb. It’s maroon and sleek-looking, with a silver streak. Holding it up to my mouth, I mutter some words without thinking. The orb pulses.
“It’s the H. A. of Banareal that we need. He’s going to be taken soon, we have a limited window of time. Wards will stop us from taking him, so we need to suspend his life. We need to find someone who can put that kind of enchantment on a common item, like a short sword. Suspend his life; then we get him out of there.”
Leaning against the doorframe, sweat drips off my forehead. Bowing my head for a second, I recall someone warning me that the orb could suck the life out of you, but wow, I wasn’t ready for this. I feel like I’ve got the flu of the century.
I stroke the silver streak of the orb. It pulses once, and it’s done. I stuff it back in my pocket.
Alright, now I’ve got to get out of here.
Pulling the door open fully, I take in the gruesome scene. There are pieces of bodies everywhere.
Across the street, I see terrified people huddled together on the second-floor balcony. If this was a Scourge Patrol, they wouldn’t be safe up there, and I’ve known Scourge Patrols to be brutal but never to rip people apart like what I’m seeing.
I’m not taking any chances. I step out of the building, closing the door behind me. Glancing each way, I don’t see any fighting going on.
I give the orb a squeeze and toss it into the air. It falls, like a lump, to the ground.
I shuffle over and scoop it up. “Come on, you’re supposed to go.” Tossing it again, I glare angrily as it lands without dignity on the brown, dusty, main street.
Picking it up and shaking my head, I notice the sheriff’s body, one of his arms missing. A thought slips out from my foggy memories and I look around. “Whatever they’re doing that’s causing the red haze, there’s not enough mana in the air to activate the magic for the orb.” I glare at the ground. “What was I supposed to do?”
As if replying, the sheriff gives me the answer. “It needs more from me.”
Just then I catch sight of a blur in the wind, then two more. This isn’t what I needed.
I reach down and snatch one of sheriff’s long-barreled pistols. Spinning the chamber with the back of my hand, I see its got three hopes of me living loaded. It’s not much, but it might be enough to get me to more.
Scanning about, I notice that only the door to the general store is closed. Maybe people are holed up in there, or maybe it’s a front for something. Either way, it strikes me as a good place to go.
I make a dash for it, the clicking bone on bone sound erupting from everywhere. The people on the balcony start screaming and crying. They’ve probably watched and heard this play out a dozen times already; now they’re waiting for my torturous end. I hope to disappoint them.
Peeking over my shoulder, everything’s deformed and distorted, like I’m looking through warped glass.
“The wind spiders are all around you!” yells a woman from the balcony.
I’ve never heard of wind spiders.
Sliding to a stop in front of the general store, I turn and accidentally shoot blindly. Yig, down to two.
Holding the orb tightly up to my chest, I wait, my heart pounding. It feels like each thought of mine is fighting through a raging river to get heard, and the river’s growing.
My eyes dart about, waiting for the inevitable. Everything’s quiet.
I scream as something slashes my leg. Falling to the ground, I drop my pistol and put a hand over the bleeding wound. It’s like someone’s put warped mirrors all around me, making the whole world look weird.
I rub my blood hand on the orb. “That’s got to count for something,” I mutter.
The orb pulses twice as I get slashed again, this time from the left and right.
I feebly lob the orb into the air. My heart sinks as nothing happens, as it falls towards the ground. But then it turns, arcing up, and vanishes.
With renewed vigor, I grab the pistol and scramble backwards to the general store’s door. I bang on the door with one hand, and fire at a warped area. Nothing on either front.
I crane my head, looking up at the door, and bang hard again. Then I gasp, as something pierces my chest, pinning me to the door.
All I can get are short, shallow breaths. There’s blood seeping out of me.
Glancing about, I see there’s a slight purple in the air. Then I see it, in all its terrifying glory: the wind spider. It smells of death, and radiates sweaty heat.
I plunge the pistol into where I figure its mouth is and pull the trigger.
Yellow goo goes everywhere, and the other blurry images back off, at least for a moment.
The pistol tumbles out of my hand as it goes numb. I can’t breathe. My head hurts.
I close my eyes, waiting for the inevitable.

Adam Dreece kicked off his indie author career with his best-selling steampunk meets fairy tale series, The Yellow Hoods, which struck a chord with kids 9-15 and adults. After four books in the series, the former software architect put out two more young adult books, the post-apocalyptic fantasy book The Wizard Killer – Season One, and then his science fiction novel, The Man of Cloud 9. The first two novels in The Yellow Hoods series, as well as The Wizard Killer, have been finalists for Book of the Year awards from the Independent Author’s Network.
When he’s not working on his next book, Adam can be found giving talks at schools, libraries, associations, as well as comic-con type events like CalgaryExpo and FanExpoCanada on subjects from how to get one’s ideas out and stepping outside of one’s comfort zone, to how to give a successful book signing.
Along the way, Adam has faced many challenges, including working around his Dyslexia (reading and writing disorder), and needing to be ruthless with his time and energy in face of his severe asthma and chronic abdominal scar pain. He’s become an inspiration to some, and a symbol of tenacious hard work to others.
He lives in Calgary, Alberta, Canada with his wife and children. He is an active online mentor at adamdreece.com, and is a busy public speaker, panelist, and author in Canada and the Pacific Northwest.

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The Bow of Hart Saga Book Tour & Giveaway

Book 1

 
Genre: 
Epic Fantasy, Adventure
Publisher: Smashwords
Publication Date: September 28, 2015
Pages: 300
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Haunted by his past. Hunted in the present. Uncertain what is real.

Athson has seen things that aren’t there and suffered fits since being tragically orphaned as a child at the hands of trolls and Corgren the wizard. When a strange will mentioning a mysterious bow comes into his possession, he’s not sure it’s real. But the trolls that soon pursue him are all too real and dangerous. And what’s worse, these raiders serve Corgren and his master, the hidden dragon, Magdronu, who are responsible for the destruction of his childhood home. Athson is drawn into a quest for the concealed Bow of Hart by the mystic Withling, Hastra, but Athson isn’t always sure what’s real and who his enemies are. With Corgren and Magdronu involved, Athson must face not only frequent danger but his grasp on reality and the reasons behind his tragic past.

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Arrows screeched by his head. “Arrows!” He hoped she heard. He kicked his gelding. It was labored though it ran hard.
They surged from the pursuit as more arrows whizzed past. Athson leaned low over his horse’s neck. Limbreth cried out in pain. The white mare slowed, and Athson’s horse overtook her and matched the mare’s pace.
He shouted over the noise of thundering hooves. “Where are you hurt?”
“Arm.” Limbreth gritted her teeth. Like a shadow, the dark arrow and blood trailed on her lighter clothing and soaked her left arm. They slowed and the trolls rushed closer. “Break it!” Limbreth snarled through gritted teeth. Her sword quivered as her arm lost strength.
He reached for the arrow as they slowed to a trot. He braced one hand against her as she leaned into him with a moan. With the other hand, he snapped off the feathered end of the arrow. He caught a glimpse of her face twisted in pain as he tore the arrow from her arm.
Trolls rushed closer and arrows sang death near them.
“Ride.” Limbreth’s weak voice countered the strength of her kicks to the mare’s flanks.
Athson trailed behind her. Harsh voices snarled ahead, and Limbreth’s horse thundered into more trolls. They screeched beneath the mare’s hooves. He sensed more trolls struggling out of the underbrush. Limbreth swayed in her saddle, but the mare galloped away.
Athson’s horse labored but followed. “Hang on!”
Tense moments passed, but the sight of lights hove into view away in the distance.
Athson urged the horse on, but it slowed and snorted. A groan of effort rolled from the gelding. Limbreth’s horse thundered on and she bobbed atop her mare.
Athson’s gelding broke pace altogether and slowed to a trembling stop. Athson dismounted, aware that trolls raced toward him. The horse collapsed, and he glimpsed several arrows sticking out of the gelding’s chest and lower neck. Blood gushed and stained its coat.
Trolls howled along the trail. Athson wheeled from the dying horse. They were too close. A few ill-aimed arrows whistled past him.
Athson hefted his sword against the fastest of the trolls. He slashed at kobolds and several fell amid spurting blood. Hobgoblins and bugbears leaped at him.
Spark jumped among them and tore out a throat. Athson gasped. The trolls leapt back, on-guard for what attacked them.
Limbreth’s white mare suddenly charged past him into the boiling mass of trolls. Bodies flew aside, and the trolls fell back in momentary confusion.
“Come on, vermin!” Limbreth’s horse stood exposing her good right arm. Her left arm still shook. The rising moon gleamed on her pale clothing, her swords and her white horse. She glimmered silver in the light.
The trolls hesitated.
“Cowards!” Limbreth charged into them.
Athson leapt over his horse with a wordless shout. He hacked and slashed at the nearest trolls. Limbreth pummeled with the hilt of her one usable sword and slashed at the trolls lunging at her.

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Book 2

 
Genre: 
Epic Fantasy, Adventure
Publisher: Smashwords
Publication Date: March 29, 2017
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Haunted by his past. Hunted in the present. Buffeted like an arrow in the wind.

The hunt for the Bow of Hart continues for Athson and his companions. They have escaped the clutches of Magdronu and Corgren, but they are still pursued. In need of answers to deep mysteries revealed in Chokkra, Athson must gain possession of the mythic bow to face both his enemies and his tragic past. But Magdronu’s reach stretches among Athson’s companions, endangering Limbreth and even Hastra in schemes to entrap them all. With each turn of the search for the Bow of Hart, long hidden secrets surface that threaten to destroy Athson. Will he falter like an arrow against the wind?

The touch of a cold hand drew Limbreth out of the depths of slumber. Her watch already? But her eyes only fluttered open and shut. Hastra said nothing. That touch—it was far colder than the weather. It crept deep into her sluggish thoughts and along her spine.
Limbreth groaned and turned her head. Her eyes flared wide at the sight of a black hand. It grasped her arm. Her jaw worked, but she uttered not a sound. Her heart slammed in her throat, and her chest heaved. The Bane dragged her toward the door where Gweld squatted.
The figure of the Bane swallowed all the light in the small space even though the fire still burned well. Limbreth found some strength and flopped as the Bane pulled her to the door’s threshold and then ducked out.
Limbreth’s lungs strained to utter any noise. It was a spell! She fought for a sound and croaked a whimper. The Bane pulled her right arm out the door.
Why wouldn’t Gweld do anything?
Limbreth fumbled with her free hand and snagged the rock edge of the doorway. The Bane yanked at her arm. Her breath came in gasps but made no viable sound.
She drew the deepest of breaths and mustered all her strength, which passed her lips in a feeble whisper: “Help.” Not enough to wake anyone. You’re on your own. Gweld never moved.
The Bane yanked her torso into the blizzard outside. Her hand grasped the doorway fast and her left arm locked in pain. A groan escaped her lips.

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P. H. Solomon lives in the greater Birmingham, AL area where he strongly dislikes yard work and sanding the deck rail. However, he performs these duties to maintain a nice home for his loved ones as well as the family’s German Shepherds. In his spare time, P. H. rides herd as a Computer Whisperer on large computers called servers (harmonica not required). Additionally, he enjoys reading, running, most sports and fantasy football. Having a degree in Anthropology, he also has a wide array of more “serious” interests in addition to working regularly to hone his writing. The Bow of Destiny is his first novel-length title with more soon to come.

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Blue’s Prophecy Book Tour & Giveaway


Genre: Middle Grade/Young Adult, Fantasy, Science Fiction
Publisher: TitleTown Publishing LLC
Publication Date: 
May 15, 2017
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About the Book

Two genetically altered dogs, two different fates. One is Robo, a beloved Great Dane, who is tricked out of the embrace of his human family and then is horribly altered by an evil scientist who rebuilds him with robotic parts, weaponizing the dog for money from the military. But that s not all the scientist does the experiments he conducts leave Robo a genius, almost immortal and with powers beyond explanation. But the horror Robo experiences at the scientist’s hands changes him driving him insane with the sole mission to destroy all humans, especially those who have tortured and hurt dogs.

Meanwhile, a scrappy alley husky sits in a shelter, when she with her blue eyes and tough wolf-like features captures the attention of another group of scientists desperate to stop Robo from his path of destruction. This dog, called Blue, could be the chosen one to fight and defeat Robo. She is also genetically enhanced and left with glowing turquoise eyes before being released to face Robo s vicious dog army. Her mission: save human civilization and the packs of dogs she’s grown to love.

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About the Author:


Emily Ross, 13, is a fifth generation writer and an owner of three dogs, Balta, Buddy and Zoey. Her prose exceeds her years, with Emily starting work on Blue’s Prophecy, a science fiction/fantasy book for pre-teens and teens, when she was 10. Living in Atlanta, Emily is also an animator and a skilled archer, and relaxes by playing the double bass in her middle school orchestra.

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Article about the Author on Vox Communications:
http://voxatl.com/teen-novelist-emily-ross-writing-tips/

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