GIVEAWAY & REVIEW: Neurotica


If you find yourself talking to Jayne Dandy, keep the conversation on Star Wars and rubber ducks—best not to mention men, dating, or S-E-X. Because Jayne is fine with the way things are: writer of obituaries and garage sale ads by day, secret scribe of adventures in distant galaxies by night. But her crippling fear of intimacy has made her the butt of jokes since forever, and hiding behind her laptop isn’t going to get her lightsaber lit.

After her therapist recommends that she write erotica as a form of exposure therapy, Jayne joins forces with pen and paper to combat the demons that won’t let her kiss and tell. Unexpectedly downsized at work, she adopts a pseudonym and secretly self-publishes one of her naughty books to make ends meet. When her adorable, long-time friend Luke, co-owner of the popular Portland food truck Luke Piewalker’s, hears she’s been demoted, he insists on hiring her to sling ├ęclairs and turnovers at his side. Her secret must be kept, but sparks ignite between them, sending Jayne and her X-Wing into a tailspin that will either make her face down her neuroses or trigger a meltdown of Death Star proportions.

Neurotica
Amazon

REVIEW

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
A must-read romance for all Star Wars fans, this book is totes adorbs. Gretchen is insufferable, and Jayne seems to be the only one to actually tolerate her. What are best friends for, right? Not to mention, Luke (Pie)Walker is the hottest geek this side of Tatooine. This duck infused erotica-ish comedy makes no excuses for being delightfully predictable. Rock on, Penis Fiction!


Fave Quotes:

The latest journal, containing the unfinished sequel to the first novel, I carry with me everywhere. In case someone breaks into my apartment to smother himself in my underwear and steal my Star Wars collectibles.

I can't walk home alone or I'll get mugged by bagpipe-playing hipsters on unicycles.

He knows that Senator Palpatine is Darth Sidious, and that General Grievous hates being called a droid. Or if we're Star Wars-weary, we can talk about Middle Earth or the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros or Craigh na Dun as if they were real places, places we could find if we were to get lost while wandering the forests and fields skirting Mt. Hood.

It always feels like the Eye of Sauron searching for the One Ring under my elven cloak.

"Sorry about that. My mother is eagerly awaiting new Padawans to add to her Rebel army."

And in a brief but powerful moment, I feel the bite of tears in the back of my throat—these are my people. We are all crazy and fun and silly together. I've never felt more un-alone in my entire life.

AUTHOR

 

A purveyor of fictions, Eliza Gordon has excellent taste in books, shoes, movies, and friends, and questionable sanity in the realm of love. Best leave that one alone.

Website |  Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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*I received this free copy in return for an honest review, and opinions are mine alone.

EXCERPT & SPOTLIGHT: Goddess Born


Pennsylvania, 1730

Selah Kilbrid keeps a dangerous secret: she has the power to heal.

A direct descendent of the Celtic goddess Brigid, it's Selah's sacred duty to help those in need. But as the last of the Goddess Born living in the New World, she learned from an early age to keep her supernatural abilities hidden. The Quaker community of Hopewell has always been welcoming, but there's no doubt they would see her hanged if her gift was revealed.

When a prominent minister threatens to try her with witchcraft unless she becomes his wife, Selah has only one hope--that her betrothed, a distant cousin from Ireland, arrives as planned. Marrying Samuel would keep her secret safe, preserve her sacred bloodline, and protect her from being charged as a witch.

But when news of Samuel's death reaches the Colonies, Selah is truly on her own. Terrified, she faces an impossible choice--forfeit her powers and marry the loathsome Nathan? Or find an imposter to pose as her husband and preserve her birthright?

Goddess Born
AmazonBarnes & Noble Carina Press

EXCERPT

I didn’t stop running until Brighmor was well out of view. With my heart pounding, I ducked out of sight behind a large oak tree to wait. A good ten minutes passed before my heart finally slowed, and I felt confident that Henry hadn’t followed me. Returning to the narrow pathway, I walked at a more leisurely pace, throwing the occasional furtive look over my shoulder as I went deeper and deeper into the woods to the manmade alcove that had been built right into the sidhe, or small earthen mound.

Years ago my grandparents had carved away enough dirt to stack large rocks three feet high, forming a wall in the shape of a half-moon. It measured about twelve feet from end to end with an arc deep enough to accommodate my full height if I were inclined to lie down. In the middle of the arc stood an altar, hewn from a piece of gray granite that had been sealed to the earth by my grandmother’s blood mixed with a handful of sacred dirt brought over from the Old World. Green and brown lichen grew on the stones, and dense foliage pushed up along the perimeter, ready to spill over into the clearing.

With the rock wall behind me, I knelt down at the altar and set the dried herbs on the smooth stone surface, charred black from countless fires. Finding the flint, I struck it repeatedly to release a shower of white sparks over the bundle. As it started to smolder, fragrances of cowslip, angelica, and goat’s rue rose up. With a long, deep breath, I pulled the smoke inside, letting it inundate my senses. Then I began to recite the ancient words in preparation to cross over.

Brigid Buadach, Buaid na fine, Siur Rig nime, Nar in duine,
Eslind luige, Lethan breo. Riar na n-oiged, Oibel ecnai,
Ingen Dubthaig, Duine uallach, Brigid buadach, Brigid
buadach.


The physical world began to waver. Keeping my voice to a low monotone, I repeated the Gaelic words. At the end of the third repetition, the trees and stones, the smoldering bundle, all flickered in and out of view, then disappeared altogether as my soul passed into to the Otherworld.

For a moment, there was nothing more than thick gray mist and the memory of burning herbs. I stepped out of the mist into the warm sunlight at the edge of Brigid’s garden, free of the night and my body that remained kneeling at the altar. 

AUTHOR


Kari Edgren did not dream of becoming a writer. Instead, she dreamed of everything else and was often made to stay inside during kindergarten recess to practice her letters. Despite doting parents and a decent school system, Ms. Edgren managed to make it through elementary school having completed only one book cover to cover – The Box Car Children, which she read approximately forty-seven times. Things improved during high school, but not until she read Gabrielle Garcia Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude in college, did she truly understand the power of a book.
Ms. Edgren aspires to be a Vulcan, a world-acclaimed opera singer, and two inches taller. She resides in the Pacific NW where she spends a great deal of time torturing her husband and children with strange food and random historical facts. Ms. Edgren hasn’t stopped dreaming, but has finally mastered her letters enough to put the stories on paper.

For more information please visit Kari Edgren’s website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

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AVERY: The Chronicles of Kaya


The people of Kaya die in pairs. When one lover dies, the other does too. So it has been for thousands of years – until Ava.

For although her bondmate, Avery, has been murdered and Ava’s soul has been torn in two, she is the only one who has ever been strong enough to cling to life. Vowing revenge upon the barbarian queen of Pirenti, Ava's plan is interrupted when she is instead captured by the deadly prince of her enemies.

Prince Ambrose has been brought up to kill and hate. But when he takes charge of a strangely captivating Kayan prisoner and is forced to survive with her on a dangerous island, he must reconsider all he holds true . . .

In a violent country like Pirenti, where emotion is scorned as a weakness, can he find the strength to fight for the person he loves . . . even when she’s his vengeful enemy?

Avery is a sweeping, romantic fantasy novel about loss and identity, and finding the courage to love against all odds.

Avery (Random Romance)
Amazon

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Thorne: The Chronicles of Kaya #2
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AUTHOR


Charlotte started writing her children’s fantasy series The Strangers of Paragor as a teenager and has since gone on to publish five novels. After a Masters degree in Screenwriting she wrote AVERY, the first in her adult fantasy series The Chronicles of Kaya, published by Random House. She now lives in Sydney, Australia, and has just released a new dystopian sci-fi novel called FURY – Book One of The Cure, published by Momentum.

SILVERN: Book Blast Giveaway

http://www.jeanbooknerd.com/2014/09/nerd-blast-silvern-by-christina-farley.html

Jae Hwa Lee has destroyed Haemosu, the dangerous demi-god that held her ancestors captive, and now she’s ready to forget about immortals and move on with her life. Then the god of darkness, Kud, sends an assassin to kill her. Jae escapes with the knowledge that Kud is seeking the lost White Tiger Orb, and joins the Guardians of Shinshi to seek out the orb before Kud can find it.

But Kud is stronger and more devious than Haemosu ever was. Jae is soon painfully reminded that by making an enemy of Kud, she has placed her closest friends in danger, and must decide how much she can bear to sacrifice to defeat one of the most powerful immortals in all of Korea.

Silvern (Gilded #2)
AMAZON | B & NBOOK DEPOSITORY

AUTHOR

After teaching and traveling internationally for ten years, Christina started writing about her adventures, tossing in a little fiction for fun. This inspired her to write the GILDED series, a YA series based on Korean mythology about a Korean-American girl who takes her destiny into her own hands.

Besides writing, Christina loves traveling, running, driving too fast, and eating dark chocolate.

Christina writes fantasy for teens. She is represented by Jeff Ourvan of the Jennifer Lyons Literary, LLC.

GIVEAWAY SPOTLIGHT: Salt & Storm

Salt & Storm by Kendall Kulper

A sweeping historical romance about a witch who foresees her own murder--and the one boy who can help change her future.

Sixteen-year-old Avery Roe wants only to take her rightful place as the witch of Prince Island, making the charms that keep the island's whalers safe at sea, but her mother has forced her into a magic-free world of proper manners and respectability. When Avery dreams she's to be murdered, she knows time is running out to unlock her magic and save herself.

Avery finds an unexpected ally in a tattooed harpoon boy named Tane--a sailor with magic of his own, who moves Avery in ways she never expected. Becoming a witch might stop her murder and save her island from ruin, but Avery discovers her magic requires a sacrifice she never prepared for.


Salt & Storm

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AUTHOR

Kendall Kulper writes historical fiction with a fantasy twist for teen readers and knows more about nineteenth century whaling than she ever imagined. Her debut YA novel, SALT & STORM will be published by Little, Brown and Company on September 23, 2014. She graduated from Harvard University with a degree in history and literature in 2008 and spent several years as a journalist before deciding to write full-time. She grew up in the wilds of New Jersey and now lives in Boston with her husband and chronically-anxious Australian Shepherd mix, Abby.



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EXCERPT & GIVEAWAY: The Crystal Cage



Captivated… or captured?

Appearances don't always reveal the truth. Grace Latimer knows this better than most. Illusions of commitment and comfort have her trapped—until bohemian adventurer Nick Heysham charms his way into her world. Commissioned to recover a Great Exhibition architect's missing designs, he persuades her to assist in his research. The mystery of the Crystal Palace seduces Grace, and once she discovers clues about a forbidden Victorian love affair, she's lured into the deep secrets of the past… secrets that resemble her own.

As Grace and Nick dig into the elusive architect's illicit, long-untold story, the ghosts of guilt and forbidden passion slip free. And history is bound to repeat itself, unless Grace finds the courage to break free and find a new definition of love…


The Crystal Cage
AmazonB&NKobo

EXCERPT

I reached Silver Street before the Merricks, and the tarpaulins flapping in the wind led me straight to the schoolroom. Apart from an ineffectual attempt to shelter a part of the roof that had been opened to the sky, it was obvious that the builders had abandoned the site without securing it. I was able to open the heavy front door and wander into the narrow vestibule. This was where the girls would have hung their coats and capes and left their galoshes on inclement days. I should have waited for the Merricks here, but I didn’t. I was being nudged to explore. Another door faced me; I pushed it ajar and was drawn into a wide, open space. The schoolroom had remained much the same as it had when the last child had closed the lid of her desk.

I walked across the scratched tiled floor towards the dais that stood at the very end of the room. Remarkably it still boasted a desk, placed in a position of authority. This was where the teacher would have sat, cane no doubt by his or her side. It was as I approached the raised wooden structure that I first felt the prickling. A definite prickling of the skin that started at my scalp and inched downward to my feet. Then my chest began to feel tight and my breath to come less easily. This is absurd, I thought. I was in an empty room, a space that was entirely innocuous. Was I allowing Leo Merrick’s tale of unquiet spirits to get to me?

I was at the dais and starting up the steps to the desk when I stumbled. My legs felt suddenly heavy, so heavy that I could hardly drag one foot in front of the other. It was as though an invisible force was manipulating me, a force I wasn’t able to control. Somehow I managed to clamber onto the dais and collapse into a seat. The prickling had ceased but my chest was still tight, encased in a steel band. I sat staring down at the desk top for what seemed an age, until its grimy ridges began to flow one into another in a mad crisscross dance. When my pulse gradually steadied, I dared to look around. I’d been fearful at what I might see, but all I gazed on was emptiness. Light from the tall, arched windows fell crookedly across the floor, casting the corners of the room into shadow. But nothing moved, nothing breathed.

I should have walked back to the vestibule then, but instead I lifted the desk lid. What made me do that, I have no idea; I just knew in that instant that I had to. The desk was empty, of course. Except for the scent. It was a scent that was very familiar and for a moment it caught in my throat. Then common sense returned, and I lifted the lid a little farther and glimpsed a patch of white. Scrabbling in the deep well of the desk I brought out a linen handkerchief and put it to my nose. The perfume was unmistakeable—jasmine. I shook the handkerchief out and looked at it closely. Patched with a century’s dirt, it must have been tucked at the very back of the desk for years. One corner held a small, embroidered initial. When I saw what it was, my heart gave a sharp jolt. It was the letter A.

AUTHOR


My father was a soldier and most of my childhood was spent moving from place to place, school to school, including several years living in Egypt and Germany. I loved some of the schools I attended, but hated others, so it wasn’t too surprising that I left half way through the sixth form with ‘A’ Levels unfinished.

I became a secretary, as many girls did at the time, only to realise that the role of handmaiden wasn’t for me. Escape beckoned when I landed a job with an airline. I was determined to see as much of the world as possible, and working as cabin crew I met a good many interesting people and enjoyed some great experiences – riding in the foothills of the Andes, walking by the shores of Lake Victoria, flying pilgrims from Kandahar to Mecca to mention just a few.

I still love to travel and visit new places, especially those with an interesting history, but the arrival of marriage and children meant a more settled existence on the south coast of England, where I’ve lived ever since. It also gave me the opportunity to go back to ‘school’ and eventually gain a PhD from the University of Sussex. For many years I taught university literature and loved every minute of it. What could be better than spending my life reading and talking about books? Well, perhaps writing them.

I’ve always had a desire to write but there never seemed time to do more than dabble with the occasional short story. And my day job ensured that I never lost the critical voice in my head telling me that I really shouldn’t bother. But gradually the voice started growing fainter and at the same time the idea that I might actually write a whole book began to take hold. My cats – two stunning cream and lilac shorthairs – gave their approval, since it meant my spending a good deal more time at home with them!

The 19th century is my special period of literature and I grew up reading Georgette Heyer, so when I finally found the courage to try writing for myself, the books had to be Regency romances. Over the last four years, writing as Isabelle Goddard, I’ve published six novels set in the Regency period.

Since then, I’ve moved on a few years to Victorian England, and I’ve changed genre too. The Crystal Cage is my first novel under the name of Merryn Allingham. The book is a mystery/romantic suspense and tells the story of a long-lost tragedy, and the way echoes from the past can powerfully influence the life of a modern day heroine. The next few Allingham books will see yet another move timewise. I’ve been writing a suspense trilogy set in India and wartime London during the 1930s and 1940s, and hope soon to have news of publication.

Whatever period, whatever genre, creating new worlds and sharing them with readers gives me huge pleasure and I can’t think of a better job.

Connect with Merryn Allingham on Facebook and Goodreads.

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REVIEW: The Wild Hunt

The Wild Hunt
The Wild Hunt by Ron C. Nieto

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

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

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

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


REVIEW

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The cover isn't my favorite, but I'm not supposed to judge, right? Well, what I found inside actually surprised me! I'm a huge fan of fantasy in general, and anything fairy related is a definite plus. This story was a bit confusing at times but refreshingly believable. It delivered high adventure at a breakneck pace, and I'm still guessing about a few exciting outcomes. It seems that I just got sucked in to yet another series...

*I received this free copy in return for an honest review, and opinions are mine alone.

GIVEAWAY & REVIEW: Eleanor

Eleanor by Jason Gurley

1985. The death of Eleanor's twin sister tears her family apart. Her father blames her mother for the accident. When Eleanor's mother looks at her, she sees only the daughter she lost. Their wounded family crumbles under the weight of their shared grief.

1993. Eleanor is fourteen years old when it happens for the first time... when she walks through an ordinary door at school and finds herself in another world. It happens again and again, but it's only a curiosity until that day at the cliffs. The day when Eleanor dives... and something rips her out of time itself.

And on the other side, someone is waiting for her.


https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22081556-eleanor
Eleanor
Amazon

REVIEW

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This was a real page-turner! Strangely haunting in the best way possible and definitely more than I expected. At times, it was overwhelmingly depressing, but I felt compelled to keep reading. The imaginatively innocent yet profound story sucked me in and simply refused to let go. It lost some of the initial momentum but still managed to leave me awestruck by the end. The writing is brilliant and gushing with dark imagery and raw emotion. Overall, a wonderfully woven and mystical tale of one family's struggle to reset the delicate balance of life after extreme loss.

AUTHOR

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6904187.Jason_Gurley

Jason Gurley is the author of the bestselling novel Greatfall as well as The Man Who Ended the World, the Movement trilogy and Eleanor, a novel thirteen years in the making. His short stories, including The Dark Age, The Caretaker, The Last Rail-Rider and others, appear in his collection Deep Breath Hold Tight: Stories About the End of Everything. He is work has appeared in a number of anthologies, among them David Gatewood's From the Indie Side and Synchronic as well as John Joseph Adams's Help Fund My Robot Army!!! & Other Improbable Crowdfunding Projects. Jason is a designer by trade and has designed book covers for Amazon Publishing, Subterranean Press, Prime Books and many independent authors, among them bestsellers Hugh Howey, Matthew Mather, Russell Blake, Michael Bunker, Ernie Lindsey and others. Jason lives and writes in the Pacific Northwest.

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*I received this free copy in return for an honest review, and opinions are mine alone.

GIVEAWAY & REVIEW: East India


02_East India
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In any other circumstance but shipwreck, rape and murder, a man like Michiel van Texel would never have met a fine lady such as Cornelia Noorstrandt.

He was just a soldier, a sergeant in the Dutch East India company?s army, on his way from Amsterdam to the Indies to fight the Mataram. Such a woman was far above the likes of him.

But both their destinies intertwine far away from Holland, on some god-forsaken islands near the Great Southland. When their great ship, the Utrecht, founders far from home, surviving the Houtman Rocks is the least of their worries.

As they battle to survive and the bravest and the best reveal themselves for what they are, Cornelia?s only hope is a mercenary in a torn coat who shows her that a man is more than just manners and money.

He makes her one promise: Even if God forsakes you, I will find you. But can he keep it?

Described by one critic as Jack and Rose in the seventeenth century, East India will keep you wondering until the final page.



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REVIEW

My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Highly recommended for fans of historical fiction on the high seas! The living conditions on an ill-fated trade ship during the early 1600s were horrendous, and the descriptive realism often made me nauseous. Yes, it is technically a love story, but there is much more mayhem, misfortune and murder than mushiness. In my opinion, it was interesting and obviously thoroughly researched yet just an okay read.

AUTHOR

Born in London, Colin first trialed as a professional football player in England, and was eventually brought to Australia. He went to Sydney and worked in TV and radio and freelanced for many of Australia?s leading newspapers and magazines. He has published over twenty novels and his work has so far been translated into 23 languages.

He travels regularly to research his novels and his quest for authenticity has led him to run with the bulls in Pamplona, pursue tornadoes across Oklahoma and black witches across Mexico, go cage shark diving in South Africa and get tear gassed in a riot in La Paz.

He currently lives in Barcelona.


For more information, please visit Colin Falconer's website.
You can also find him on Facebook and Twitter.

GIVEAWAY

INTERNATIONAL / Must be 18+ to enter.

A total of six (6) winners will be chosen.
International winner(s) will receive an e-book copy.
Winner's choice for US winner(s) of paperback or e-book.

Please, read the Terms & Conditions listed in the widget below before entering. 

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*I received this free copy in return for an honest review, and opinions are mine alone.