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Book Blitz, Excerpt, Teasers, and Giveaway: The Gathering

 

The Gathering
Bernadette Giacomazzo
(The Uprising, #1)
Publication date: March 31st 2018
Genres: Adult, Dystopian

The Uprising Series tells the story of three freedom fighters and their friends in high — and low — places that come together to overthrow a vainglorious Emperor and his militaristic Cabal to restore the city, and the way of life, they once knew and loved.

In The Gathering, Jamie Ryan has defected from the Cabal and has joined his former brothers-in-arms — Basile Perrinault and Kanoa Shinomura — to form a collective known as The Uprising. When an explosion leads to him crossing paths with Evanora Cunningham — a product of Jamie’s past — he discovers that The Uprising is bigger, and more important, than he thought.

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EXCERPT:

Jamie

I saw Emperor – looking like a hot air balloon, sounding as ridiculous as ever – blathering on about his personal Reichstag fire, and laying the blame of the explosion squarely at the feet of myself and my brothers-in-arms.

“…and it’s these traitors of the state – the threat to the security of my Empire of the United States of America – the defectors of the Cabal who go by Jamie Ryanand Basile Perrinault and, my greatest betrayal, Supreme Allied Commander Kanoa Shinomura…” he hollered into the microphone, which seemed to reverberate throughout the city.

At the sound of Kanoa’s name, the Cabal members below the balcony slammed the butts of their guns on the floor in rhythm. I knew that rhythm all too well – it was meant to be a war cry for those of us in the rank-and-file of the Cabal – but, to the untrained ear, it sounded like a machine gun going off…which was exactly the point.

But I couldn’t help but sneer at the accusation that the blast that nearly killed Evanora and Tommy was somehow our fault. He’d spent decades trying to catch us and failing miserably, yet in the same breath, believed we were inept enough to set off a blast that took no lives and could be cleaned up during a balmy New York evening. And he managed to sell this ridiculous belief to the crowd, no less.

“Let’s make something clear, asshole,” I muttered, “if it had been me and the boys that lit your shit up, you wouldn’t be standing here today.”

Despite the absurdity of the accusation – and despite the obvious absurdity of the accusation – the victims of psi just grunted along, agreeing with everything and anything that came out of Emperor’s mouth, in part because they didn’t know any better (they were psi victims, after all), and in part because any disagreement with what Emperor had to say was met with a fierce, painful punishment.

“His Word, Before All and Above All,” I muttered. “With liberty and justice for no one, so kiss my peasant Old New York ass and take a breath mint afterward, unless you like that funky aftertaste…”

My voice trailed off as my eyes focused on a strange woman on the balcony.

At first, I couldn’t discern who she was – she looked like someone I’d seen before, yet someone I’d never seen before.

Her hair was a garish white-blonde, stringy and lifeless, and pinned tightly behind her head with a set of black ceramic chopsticks. Her makeup was almost cartoonish – cat-like black eyeliner and matte black lipstick sat atop a ghostly white foundation. Even her outfit was a hideously hilarious cultural appropriation – a black silk kimono paired with a set of black stiletto heels. I’d seen Old New York 42nd Street prostitutes, with terrible heroin problems, sell the “Asian coquette” look better than what I’d seen before me now.

“Who the actual…” I began, hesitantly, unable to process who I was seeing before me.

And then it hit me, all at once, who she was.

For the first time in a long time, I was literally speechless.

When I could finally find my voice again, it barely came out in a whisper. “Rosie,” I squeaked.

I walked into the Ludlow Street apartment I shared with

Angelique and was instantly greeted with the smell of a meat dish that, I would later learn, was calledcarne asada.

“Angelique!” I called out over the loud sizzling of steak as I kicked off my black Frye boots and set my matching acoustic guitar down. “Where are you, my love?”

“In here!” she called, out of sight, from the kitchen, where more clanging and banging sounds echoed over her voice.

I began walking through the apartment, shedding layers as I went along until I reached the kitchen wearing nothing but my black leather pants and a mischievous smile. I was hoping to have a little appetizer of crème d’Angelique before dinner, but when I reached the kitchen, I realized – much to my chagrin – that we weren’t alone.

Angelique, her hair tied back into a messy ponytail, was wearing a tight, white, see-through shorts jumper and a matching white apron. She was standing next to an unfamiliar-looking woman with a matching messy ponytail, but whose thick chocolate brown hair stood in sharp contrast to Angelique’s thin flaxen locks. The rest of her, too, was in stark contrast to Angelique, but not in a bad way – she was olive-skinned, in contrast to Angelique’s pale white skin; she was curvy, in contrast to Angelique’s ectomorphic figure; she was fiery, in contrast to Angelique’s ethereal nature.

They were standing side by side, working on something that smelled simply delicious. Angelique was mixing flour, sugar, and garlic powder, and her friend was adding melted butter and salted water to the resultant powder, then kneading it until it formed a dough.

“Am I interrupting something?” I asked as I walked behind Angelique, wrapped my arms around her waist, and kissed her neck, breathing in her scent of lilacs as I did so.

She smiled, then took her index finger and bopped the tip of my nose with the flour mixture. “Hey handsome,” she said, beatifically. “We’re making something special for you for dinner. We’ve got carne asada in the pan over there – we’ve got some arroz con gandules in the rice cooker – and we’re making…wait, girl, what’s this called?”

Arepas,” her friend said, smiling as she continued to knead the dough between her hands, her silver thumb ring glistening in the light of the dusk as she did so.

“Right, arepas,” Angelique repeated. “Ramira here is teaching me all her magic ways – she says this is the exact dinner I need to make if I want my man to marry me.” She giggled, then elbowed Ramira, who giggled along with Angelique.

I couldn’t help but giggle, as well, as I unentwined myself from Angelique and walked over to Ramira to properly introduce myself. “I’m going to be stuffed fordays with all this delicious food, so it’s only right that we become friends,” I began, extending my hand. “Hi there. I’m James Randall Ryan IV, I somehow lucked out enough to convince this lovely lady Angelique to be my girlfriend, and it’s a pleasure to meet you. You can call me Jamie.”

Ramira smiled, then shook my hand with two of her fingers, taking care not to smear the wet dough across my palm. “Well, my name is Ramira Diaz, Angelique is my best friend, and it’s a pleasure to meet you too. You can call me Rosie, though. Everyone else does.”

I sat under a wilting star magnolia tree and stared, intently, through the open window of a room that had to be Rosie’s dressing room. She peeled her black silk kimono off and turned her back to the frameless window, exposing her prominent ribs and shoulder blades as she did so. The sight of her suddenly-bare, emaciated frame shocked me, especially given how pronounced her curves were in our younger years, and tears welled up in my eyes yet again.

In the decades since Angelique and my son had died, I could count the number of times I’d cried on one hand. In the past 72 hours, though – as I realized that my best friend’s kid, and my best friend’s girlfriend, were alive and well, and that the Uprising was bigger than I’d ever imagined – the tears came quickly and flowed easily, and I couldn’t decide if this was a sign of strength or weakness on my part.

Rosie slipped a shimmering white camisole over her emaciated frame, which she then tucked into a pair of white linen slacks. I couldn’t get over how thin she’d gotten, then wondered if this was by her own design, or if she was under orders from that evil husband of hers. No way would Jordan be cool with this, I thought to myself. On his fucking grave would this go on. On his fucking grave. And wouldn’t you know it – here we are, on his fucking grave.

I saw Rosie leave the room and begin to head down a flight of stairs, and I took that as an opportunity to get her alone, away from the rabid Cabal and out of sight of the vainglorious Emperor. She’d taken a few steps away from her building, and into Emperor’s Park, before passing by the wilting star magnolia tree that I was hiding behind. It was only when I saw the back of her slicked back, perfect ponytail – what a difference from the one she was wearing when we first met, I thought – that I saw the opportunity to get her alone and began walking behind her.

“You’ve come a long way from making arepas on Ludlow Street,” I said, tapping her on the shoulder when I finally caught up with her.

She spun around, her face scrunched up in fear, and for a split second, I thought she was going to hit me. But just as quickly, she relaxed as her eyes registered who owned the disembodied voice. “Jamie,” she whispered tearfully. “You’re here. You’re alive. I didn’t realize…”

“How the hell did you not?” I asked, furrowing my eyebrows and side-eyeing her. “Your damned husband has been hunting me for decades.”

“I knew that,” she said, taking ragged breaths. “But just the fact that he was never able to take you alive led me to believe that you were…you know…” Her voice trailed off.

I wasn’t convinced, and I continued to stare at her intently as I scratched my left cheek, which was now beginning to show the first signs of salt-and-pepper beard stubble. “First of all, why the hell are you talking like you’re Queen Elizabeth? Second, let me just state it for the record: you give your asshole husbandway too much credit if you think he can take me down.”

Rosie bit her lower lip, then shifted her eyes down. I put my hand under her chin and tipped her face up, forcing her eyes to meet mine as I tried, desperately, to search for a sign of the Rosie I once knew. “Rosie,” I whispered intently. “It’s me. You don’t have to hide from me.”

Her face was a blank slate. “My name is Rose. Rose Cunningham,” she said with flat affect.

“Oh, bullshit,” I whispered, even more intently. “Whatever happened to ‘call me Rosie, everyone else does’? What happened to that woman who was makingarepas in the kitchen with my Angelique?”

That got her attention, and her deep brown eyes flashed with fire as she balled up her fists and began swinging at me. “You shit! You bastard! You did it! You almost killed my baby!”

I ducked, bobbed and weaved, avoiding each blow as I carefully tried to talk her down from the ledge. “Rosie! What the hell are you talking about? I didn’t do that shit! I swear!”

She continued to swing at me. “Yes! Yes, you did!” she squealed tearfully, repeating the same “yes, yes” with each swing, her voice getting louder each time.

“Do you want to knock it off before the fuckin’ Cabal finds us, Rosie? The fuck is wrong with you? Jesus Christ!” I was shouting despite myself and began scanning the landscape frantically for Cabal soldiers that would have undoubtedly heard us, all while bobbing and weaving like a prizefighter to avoid getting punched in the face.

She swung even harder and squealed even louder. “You tried to kill my baby! Just like you killed yours!”

That line finally got me to react, and I had to steady my breathing to stop from clocking her in the mouth. Even in the throes of the worst of my Faustian behavior, I never hit a woman, and neither did any of my bandmates – the thought of violence against a woman, let alone a woman we’d loved, didn’t even cross our drug-addled minds.

Instead, I grabbed her wrists and forced them down to her sides, holding them in place at hip level as she struggled, trying to hit me, until she finally began whimpering in defeat.

“Now you listen to me, Ramira Diaz, and you listen well,” I began, angrily. “You may have forgotten everything you were and are, but I sure

as fuck haven’t forgotten a goddamn thing, and let me rest assure you, I never fuckin’ will.”

Her lower lip was trembling, her eyes were watering, and it became evident that she was on the verge of tears. Still, I continued. “So, let me get a few things out of the way now, so we’re not confused. Number one: that blast? It wasn’t me. It wasn’t anyone tied to me. It wasn’t anyone whose name I can even spell. Because let me assure you, again, that if it were me, or anyone tied to me, we’d have burned down the entire fuckin’ city, even if it meant killing ourselves in the process, and wouldn’t have left a survivor anywhere on this God-forsaken island.

“Number two: you know goddamn well I didn’t kill Angelique or our baby. Now I wear their death on my heart every. Fucking. Day. I haven’t had a good night’s sleep in twenty fucking years, from the day they were killed, because I can’t get their murders out of my mind. There are times I wish I was dead, just so that I don’t have to live with the guilt of their murders, but no, here I am, and ain’t that a fuckin’ bitch from Hell. I’d give all the money in the world to have my Angelique back. I’d trade my life for Jordan’s any day of the week. And my son – my only legacy – never had a chance at life, and you think that’s all fair?

“Number three – and this is the most important part, Rosie, goddamnit, you’d better fuckin’ listen to this if you listen to nothing else: remember that promise I made to you in the hospital room? All those years ago? Because I fuckin’ do. And that’s why when Evanora and Tommy came down the Bowery after the blast, and I realized who she was, I made sure she was safe and clean and warm…”

Rosie looked shocked. “Wait. She came to you?”

I searched her face, trying to see if I could register where her loyalties lie before I continued to answer the question. For some reason, however, I couldn’t make it out. I even tried to read Rosie’s mind using a gentle form of psi, but I still couldn’t read her mind at all. It was like trying to probe a brick wall. So, to protect Evanora – and the rest of us – I chose to cover my tracks. “Yeah,” I said airily, “she mentioned something about listening to Uprising Radio.”

The name of Uprising Radio registered some type of recognition with Rosie, and her eyes lit up slightly. “My baby has heard Uprising Radio?”

“I don’t know for sure,” I continued, still adopting an airy affect, “but I’m pretty sure that’s what she said.” Using my Cabal training, I put a mental wall between my thoughts and Rosie, mostly because I didn’t know how much training she’d had in the psi arts, and I wasn’t sure if she, too, could read my mind. And if, God forbid, her loyalties lied with that pathetic excuse of her husband, I could at least protect, if not myself, then the whole Uprising movement.

I made sure the wall was firmly in place before I continued. “I think I’ve heard Uprising Radio a few times, but I don’t know much about it, who does it, or anything of the sort.”

“Yeah,” Rosie said, hesitantly, behind a mental brick wall of her own, “I have no idea, either.”

We were calmer, now – our breath was steady, our thoughts were collected, and Rosie’s fists were limp. I finally felt confident that she wasn’t going to try to hit me again, so I loosened my grip on her wrists.

But I suddenly found myself unable to let her go, so I slid my hands from her wrists to her hands and grabbed her fingers lightly. I was overcome with emotion.

“What is it, Jamie?” Her voice was cracking.

I exhaled loudly, then drew in a ragged breath. “Do you think about him, Rosie? Do you think about Jordan at all?”

She closed her eyes and allowed the tears to fall as she exhaled shakily. “Every day of my life,” she said softly. “There’s not a day that goes by that Jordan doesn’t cross my mind. Every time I look at Evanora – every time I hear her laugh – he comes to my mind. Sometimes, she gives me this look – you remember, Jamie? You remember when Jordan would hear something that was just too stupid for words, and he would get this look on his face, like, ‘were you dropped on your head as a child?’” – and to this, I gave a half-smile and a nod – “and now, she gets that look. And that one eyebrow” – she took her finger and drew on her left eyebrow – “it would just go up like…like…”

She dropped her hand as her voice trailed off, her eyes filling with tears.

I nodded my head, closed my eyes, and sighed. “Fuckin’ guy,” I said, opening my eyes and looking at Rosie. “So. You didn’t see me, right?”

Rosie smiled and winked at me. “Ivan Sapphire? Please. Get over yourself, rock star.” She squeezed my hands one last time for good measure. “I’m going to leave now. I’m not going to look back because I don’t want to see where you’re going. This way, if someone with bad intentions against you asks me if I know where you are, I can answer honestly when I say I don’t know. But just because I don’t look back, doesn’t mean I want to see you go. I need you to understand that, Jamie Ryan. I don’t need you to over-analyze things that don’t need over-analyzing. I need you to let me go, Jamie Ryan, and I need you to know that I love you, and I thank you, from the bottom of my heart.”

She finally let go of my hands, gave me a slight nod, then turned and walked back to her home. I watched her, silently, keeping the promise I made so long ago to Jordan Barker and didn’t leave what was once known as Central Park until I saw, for sure, that she was safe inside.

 

Author Bio:

With an impressive list of credentials earned over the course of two decades, Bernadette R. Giacomazzo is a multi-hyphenate in the truest sense of the word: an editor, writer, photographer, publicist, and digital marketing specialist who has

demonstrated an uncanny ability to thrive in each industry with equal aplomb. Her work has been featured in Teen Vogue, People, Us Weekly, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, and many, many more. She served as the news editor of Go! NYC Magazine for nearly a decade, the executive editor of LatinTRENDS Magazine for five years, the eye candy editor of XXL Magazine for two years, and the editor-at-large at iOne/Zona de Sabor for two years. As a publicist, she has worked with the likes of Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and his G-Unit record label, rapper Kool G. Rap, and various photographers, artists, and models. As a digital marketing specialist, Bernadette is Google Adwords certified, has an advanced knowledge of SEO, PPC, link-building, and other digital marketing techniques, and has worked for a variety of clients in the legal, medical, and real estate industries.

Based in New York City, Bernadette is the co-author of Swimming with Sharks: A Real World, How-To Guide to Success (and Failure) in the Business of Music (for the 21st Century), and the author of the forthcoming dystopian fiction series, The Uprising. She also contributed a story to the upcoming Beyonce Knowles tribute anthology, The King Bey Bible, which will be available in bookstores nationwide in the summer of 2018.

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Cover Reveal: Better Together

 

Better Together
Crista McHugh
(One Fond Embrace, #1)
Publication date: August 20th 2018
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Hawaiian rancher Alex Kahale needs a temporary wife to close a deal that’s vital to the welfare of his herd. Thankfully, he’s already married to a woman stole his heart in less than a week, even if that same wife filed for divorce a few days after they said their “I dos”.

Rising country music star Britney Moore had a wild fling with a cowboy in Las Vegas a year ago which ended in a drunken drive-through marriage. Once she returned to Nashville, she filed for divorce to save her squeaky clean image. Besides, spontaneous marriages never last, and she knows better than to risk her heart on Alex. But no matter how many requests she sends him, he refuses to sign the papers. Then he sends her an intriguing offer. Come to his ranch on Kauai and pretend to be his wife for two weeks for business purposes, and he’ll sign the papers.

As much as Britney tries to resist his charm, Alex manages to tear down her defenses one by one until she falls for him all over again. But when the press finds out about her secret husband, will their revived romance be killed by the tabloids?

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Author Bio:

Crista McHugh is a NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY BESTSELLING author of fantasy and romance with heroines who are smart, sexy, and anything but ordinary. She also writes fantasy with a little less kissing and bit more action (outside the bedroom) as C. A. McHugh.

Growing up in small town Alabama, Crista relied on story-telling as a natural way for her to pass the time and keep her two younger sisters entertained.

She currently lives in the Audi-filled suburbs of Seattle with her husband and two children, maintaining her alter ego of mild-mannered physician by day while she continues to pursue writing on nights and weekends.

Just for laughs, here are some of the jobs she’s had in the past to pay the bills: barista, bartender, sommelier, stagehand, actress, morgue attendant, and autopsy assistant.

And she’s also a recovering LARPer. (She blames it on her crazy college days)

To be the first to know about her latest releases or to be entered into exclusive contests, please sign up for her newsletter using the contact form on her webpage, http://www.cristamchugh.com.

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Book Blitz, Excerpt, Teasers, and Giveaway: A Shameless Little Bet

 

A Shameless Little Bet
Meli Raine
(Shameless #3)
Publication date: June 5th 2018
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

How do I prove a negative?

I need to prove Jane is innocent, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

Mirrors, smoke, and lies can conjure a truth that isn’t real. Money, bribes, and power can twist reality. What we call proof is all an elaborate magic act.

So is love.

How do you prove you’re in love? How can you know with unrelenting certainty that the person you can’t live without really loves you?

It’s all about what you believe. Who you believe. And I believe Jane. I love her. But it might be too late.

Or, worse-it might all be an illusion. If proof is just a magician’s sleight of hand, then we’re caught in a sick trick.

A deadly one.

One that doesn’t end with applause.

But with a bang.

Read the stunning conclusion to the Shameless series as Jane and Silas fight against forces that conspire to keep them apart — maybe forever.

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EXCERPT:

JANE

Lindsay’s already there at the Lilac Inn when Duff escorts me in. The place is tastefully decorated in a retro style, with floral prints and fresh flowers everywhere, an emphasis on lilacs, of course.

A silent hug greets me, her tight embrace saying more than any words. Duff stays back, tasteful like the decor but ever-present. He’s a theme we can’t shake.

“I am so sorry, Jane. I knew Drew was paranoid, but this takes the cake.” She leads me to a small semi-circular table with tea service already set up. Little cakes and sandwiches dot a three-tiered serving tray, and it turns out coffee is in what I thought was a teapot.

My stomach doesn’t just growl. It roars.

“Hungry?”

“You would think I’d have no appetite, but I guess I do,” I confess as we sit down. She pours me a cup of java while I shove a tiny, really yummy triangular sandwich in my mouth and sigh. Something with hummus and roasted red peppers does my mouth – and heart – good.

“You’re human. Unlike some people,” she says pointedly.

“They tested me, Lindsay. Your husband pretended to shoot Silas in the heart in front of me, to see if I would kill Drew instead of drop the gun and take care of Silas.”

The teaspoon in her hand falls, banging on one of the sandwich tiers, clang clang clang.

“Drew what?”

 

Author Bio:

Meli Raine writes romantic suspense with hot bikers, intense undercover DEA agents, bad boys turned good, and Special Ops heroes — and the women who love them.

Meli rode her first motorcycle when she was five years old, but she played in the ocean long before that. She lives in New England with her family.

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Book Blitz, Excerpt, and Giveaway: Spectacle

 

Spectacle
S.J. Pierce
Publication date: June 4th 2018
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult

Avatar meets Gladiator in this spellbinding Young Adult, Science-Fiction seriesby bestselling author S.J. Pierce.

Two hundred years after the Great Disaster, the day earthquakes ravaged Earth’s landscapes, humanity has finally regrouped and is working toward a better future. But in New America – one of three remaining landmasses – overpopulation makes a better future seem bleaker by the year.

Mira (Mirabella) Foster and her parents are citizens of New America, and with the threat of starvation and disease looming on the horizon, a discovery threatens to push everyone to the brink of chaos:blue markings develop on people’s skin. Markings that allow them to camouflage,but also make them feared, and eventually, targets of violence.

Mira’s dad is one of them.

Spectacle, Part One is the beginning of a three-part series. Suitable for ages fourteen and up.

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On sale for 99¢ for a limited time!

Spectacle has made it to my TOP TEN LIST OF DYSTOPIAN BOOKS to read. ★★★★★

This book is totally ADDICTIVE, FAST-PACED and SUSPENSEFUL, with great lead characters and complex world building. ★★★★★

HUNGER GAMES meets AVATAR in this spellbinding Young Adult, Science-Fiction series by bestselling author S.J. Pierce.

EXCERPT:

When Luxxe and I make it into the crowd, they part for us, their cheers and attentions trained on him – the camp’s hunting trainer and star of our monthly hunting expeditions. In other words, their well-respected (and sometimes feared) hero. I’ve seen him hunt enough to know why too. He’s precise and brutal. No holds barred. It’s safe to say he’s the best one here, and I have to admit, though anything violent makes my stomach turn (even for the purpose of food), to see him in his element is like witnessing the athleticism of an Olympian god. This is what he was made for – to kill.

His arm slips from my shoulder as he turns to hug his best friend and training assistant, Cole – another mountain of a teenage boy. He wears his dreads shorter, and his eyes are the color of liquid metal. His markings have harsh angles like bolts of lightning and cover his arms and half his torso. They’ve multiplied since I last saw him.

The cheers around us ebb as they wait for Luxxe to finish his greetings and lead us into the forest; this is the part where I have to fend for myself. Then we’ll part ways into smaller groups and kill whatever we can carry. Our group is usually me, Luxxe, Taylor, and Cole.

While I stand with my hands clasped and looking at the ground, the lonely snowflake in a frenzied bed of coal, I feel some of their eyes on me but pretend not to notice. I know they wonder about me – the blonde, pale girl with no markings who hardly ever comes around; the girl Luxxe is close with even though he has a very committed girlfriend, not that it’s any of their business; the daughter of the former head liaison who met with the President all those years ago. Though most believe my dad is innocent, I think some blame him for starting the war that placed us here, though they don’t say it. At least not to me. I’ve overheard rumblings in the market a time or two about how he went ‘mad’ or ‘rogue’ and secretly planned to take the President out but was taken out instead. And it might be my imagination, but I feel their resentment when they look at me, still fresh after all this time. Like I was somehow in on whatever they assume he did.

Oh, well. Screw them. He was innocent.

 

Author Bio:

Multiple Award Nominated and Bestselling Author Susan James Pierce has a degree in Marketing Management, works for a Fortune 500 company in Atlanta, Georgia, and devotes her precious, spare time to writing Paranormal, Sci-fi, and Contemporary Romance novels.

Please visit http://www.sjpiercebooks.com and sign up for her mailing list or subscribe to her blog if you’d like to hear when new books come out!

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Book Blitz, Teasers, and Giveaway: A Dead Ringer for Katie REAL TIME

 

A Dead Ringer for Katie REAL TIME
Tia Brady
(A Katie Cass Mystery, #2)
Publication date: June 2nd 2018
Genres: Mystery, New Adult, Romance

How’s a girl to celebrate her 22nd birthday…

When her fame seeking mom is in town with her shady mob-boss fiance, creepy locals are finding her a bit too interesting, and a threatening letter is left on her car? Celebrate in style, of course, at the biggest event of the year, the town costume party, headlined by none other than the Cave Spiders. Not only are they THE band of the year, they have sexy Peter Sleigh as the lead singer. Katie can’t seem to get him off her mind, and it’s no wonder why, the man has more mystery surrounding him than the small town of Angel Bay has bats swirling in the fog.

In the midst of it all, she still owes her best friend. Although they may have located Sasha’s missing necklace, that only led to more questions and no necklace in hand. Why is it being guarded by a tarantula, does it really have supernatural powers, and why did Peter Sleigh ever steal it in the first place? With a handsome detective helping her, a stalker, and a crazy girl threatening her, Katie is determined to discover the truth behind the stolen heirloom and the secrets of the one and only Peter Sleigh.

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More Behind the Scenes with Tia:
A Brand New Rock Star Interview was just released here!

 

Author Bio:

Tia Brady, is an American Author, who was born in Silver Spring, MD but moved shortly after. She now lives in a town similar to Angel Bay and works a job similar to her heroine Katie Cass, but all she writes is made up, of course!

Tia graduated from George Mason University with a degree in Philosophy, and has written a movie script, TV pilot and her New Adult romance caper is a fun, sexy, rock band themed Mystery, with a script-like vibe. Tia’s Book Two of her Dead Ringer Series will release in 2018 with Book Three soon to follow.

Tia loves the 80’s, fresh brewed coffee, hiking, and Rockin’ out to Duran Duran, Weezer, and some 90’s (grunge & alternative). Her Rock Star crush is Tom Cruise with whom she’d love to go for a moonlit run.

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Book Blitz, Excerpt, and Giveaway: Clutch

 

Clutch
Lisa Becker
Publication date: Original 2015; Re-release 2018
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

** Now with five new bonus chapters **

Clutch is the laugh-out-loud, chick lit romance chronicling the dating misadventures of Caroline Johnson, a single purse designer who compares her unsuccessful romantic relationships to styles of handbags – the “Hobo” starving artist, the “Diaper Bag” single dad, the “Briefcase” intense businessman, etc. With her best friend, bar owner Mike by her side, the overly-accommodating Caroline drinks a lot of Chardonnay, puts her heart on the line, endures her share of unworthy suitors and finds the courage to discover the “Clutch” or someone she wants to hold onto.

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EXCERPT:

Mimi Johnson was casually dressed in a brightly-colored blouse with enormous turquoise jewelry and equally-oversized glasses. Despite that largesse, the only thing truly bigger than her personality (and her bosom) was her handbag. Always perfectly matched to her clothing, shoes, and jewelry, she was like a walking Chico’s advertisement, if you added forty years, forty pounds, and a Virginia Slims cigarette. From her Mary Poppins-like bag, she pulled out a box, impeccably-wrapped in glossy pink paper with a white grosgrain ribbon bow. A cigarette teetered between her two fingers while she produced a lung-hacking cough.

“Open it… <cough, cough> …sweetie. Open it,” she said to her seven-year-old great niece, Caroline, a beautiful and vibrant girl with long blonde hair and oversized blue eyes.

Alive with anticipation, sweet young Caroline eagerly took the box and smiled up at Mimi. She gingerly removed the ribbon, planning to save it for later. The glossy paper

was of less interest and she ripped through it quickly. She opened the box and gently lifted out a hot pink purse, adorned with pale pink flowers and rhinestones. An enormous smile overcame her. Caroline nearly set her own hair on fire from Mimi’s cigarette as she bounded into her aunt’s arms.

“Oh, thank you, Aunt Mimi. It’s lovely.”

And that was when Caroline’s love of handbags began. From big and loud ones that would make Mimi proud to unimposing wristlets, from bowler bags to satchels; it didn’t matter if they were made of canvas or calf-skin leather, were distressed or embellished with metal studs. Hell, she didn’t care if you called them pocketbooks or purses. She just loved them all – almost as much as she loved Mimi.

By the time she was a junior in high school and well on her way to being class valedictorian, it was the hundreds of bags Caroline owned that helped her conceptualize her ticket out of her suffocating small Georgian town. She would design handbags. And it was Mimi who was her steadfast cheerleader.

“Caroline, sweetie… <cough, cough> …you find something you love and you just hold onto it.” It had never mattered if Caroline was asking Mimi’s advice about a friend, lover, or career. The advice was always the same: “Find something you love and hold onto it.”

Mimi’s words ever-present in her mind, Caroline headed to the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising and spent four years in Los Angeles learning everything there was to know to pursue her passion. Then, right out of college, she spent three years working in the design and marketing departments of two of the world’s leading, high-end handbag designers.

She was schooled in beauty and how to accessorize the perfectly-coiffed women on the way to their Botox appointments. But Caroline was pulled by the nagging feeling that the very person who had inspired her career, Mimi, could never afford the bags she designed, even if Caroline used her generous employee discount on Mimi’s behalf. And God forbid Mimi would ever accept one as a gift, always preferring to give rather than receive. But Caroline believed there was no reason for anyone to be denied the ultimate in accessories. She saw an untapped market of designing beautiful and affordable bags, but she just wasn’t sure she was start-up potential. Again, it was Mimi who nudged her to learn the business side of things and apply to MBA programs. When Caroline was accepted to Harvard Business School, Mimi, of course, encouraged her.

“You’ve got this, sweetie. <cough, cough>,” she said. “It’s in the bag.”

•••

Caroline was sitting in Financial Reporting and Control on her first day of Harvard classes (and yes, the class turned out to be as boring as it sounded). That’s when she first eyed Mike, who was wearing a faded pair of Levi jeans, a washed-out vintage Rolling Stones T-shirt, and Converse sneakers. He oozed charisma. Turning her head away from him and back toward the front of the lecture hall, Caroline thought that if he were a handbag, he would be a grey leather tote – confident and dependable, but not trying too hard.

Mike surveyed the large lecture hall as he walked in, a Starbucks coffee cup in each hand. After descending the steps slowly, he took a seat next to Caroline and planted one of the white and green cups on her desk.

Flashing a wide, dimpled smile, which she mused he reserved for getting girls to drop their panties, he said, “Here. You look like you’re going to need this.”

“Thanks,” she replied in a suspicious tone, turning her head sideways to look at him and raising an eyebrow.

“I’m Mike,” he said, again flashing a smile and reaching out for a handshake.

“I’m Caroline. Thanks for the…”

“Latte.”

“Latte,” she confirmed. “Thanks. But just so you know, I’m not gonna sleep with you,” she said in an apparent attempt to establish up front she wasn’t taken in by his obvious charm.

“I know,” he replied matter-of-fact.

Before she could respond, Professor Beauregard, a stout man with excessive eyebrows, spoke up. “Please take note of where you are seated. I will send around a seating chart for you to mark your spot. This will be your seat for the remainder of the semester.”

“Looks like we’ll be seatmates,” Mike said, grinning at her.

“Looks like it.”

•••

About three months into the first semester, Caroline learned that her fun-loving, easy-going, new best buddy Mike wasn’t exactly who he appeared to be.

A blanket of white snow dusted the Harvard grounds and it was a particularly slow day in another mutual class, LEAD – Leadership and Organizational Behavior. Professor Moss, a frail man who weighed less than his years, was droning on and on about establishing productive relationships with subordinates or something to that effect. He initiated a discussion about what works better – the carrot or stick approach.

“Mr. Barnsworth,” he called, referring to his seating chart and scanning the room until he found Mike in the fifth row. “What are your thoughts?”

“Well, it seems to me that good management is all about empathy and being able to enthuse and inspire your staff. You know, appreciating them and respecting them. Showing you care,” he said, placing his hand over his heart in a gesture of true compassion and concern. “And if they can’t get that through their thick skulls, you fire ‘em,” he continued, drawing his finger across his throat.

Several students sitting around them started to chuckle while Caroline stifled a laugh. Mike looked around the room and nodded his head, soaking in the appreciation of his sense of humor.

“Mr. Barnsworth,” said Professor Moss in a menacing tone, “I would have expected a better answer from you, considering your family history.”

Confused by the conversation unfolding before her, Caroline leaned over and whispered to Mike, “What is he talkin’ about?” Mike put up a hand to quiet her.

“Later,” he hissed.

Twenty minutes later, the two shared a bench outside Baker Library, the chill of winter causing Caroline to pull her scarf closer around her neck.

“What was that all about?” she asked, scrunching up her nose in confusion.

Reluctantly, Mike began to speak. “My full name is Michael Frederick Barnsworth the Third. My family owns a large brokerage firm in New York,” he confessed, unsure of how Caroline would react.

Caroline listened as she took in just how old money his family really was. Mike’s great, great, great, great – actually it was hard to keep track of how many “greats” it went back – grandfather ran the first Bank of the United States, which Congress chartered in the early 1800s. His family had advised presidents, dined with royalty, and amassed a fortune that continued today through the Barnsworth Brokerage Firm.

“I’m the seventh person in my family to attend Harvard including my father, uncle, three cousins, and grandfather, who was a classmate of Professor Moss,” he continued.

Surprised by this unexpected news, she joked, “So you’re just slummin’ with a simple Southern girl like me – and makin’ me pay for drinks, mind you – until you go join the family business and marry someone named Muffy…”

“That’s my family’s plan,” Mike laughed. “There’s even an office in the Woolworth Building owned by my family, sitting empty, until I finish business school,” he said reluctantly.

“But…” she pressed, touching his hand gently, sensing the family plan may not actually be Mike’s plan – though they had never discussed his plans before.

“I want to open a bar,” he said, matter of fact and looking her square in the eye.

Caroline’s head leaned back as she let out a raucous laugh. “You want to own a bar?” she questioned, her shoulders shaking from laughter. “Now I get your goal to drink at every one of the six hundred bars in Boston before you graduate.”

“Yup, it’s research,” he said emphatically.

“Research?”

“Yeah. Every time my parents call, which isn’t very often – they are usually off with their snobby society friends or at Met Balls – I tell them I’m working hard and doing research.”

“Gotta give you credit. That’s pretty clever,” she replied, nodding her head.

“And true. If I’m going to open the best bar ever, I need to know what works and what doesn’t.”

“Okay. I get why you don’t want to be a wizard of Wall Street. But why a bar?” she asked, not understanding his desire for the life of a bar back.

“My parents weren’t around a lot growing up. My father spent more time in the office than my mother spent jetting between boutiques in Paris and ski chalets in Switzerland. And believe me, that was a lot,” he confessed. Caroline looked down in her lap, her heart sinking at the thought of the small boy with the winning smile being ignored by his family.

“I was pretty much raised by a series of au pairs. My favorite was Linnea who was nineteen when she came from Sweden to live with our family. She was obsessed with Tom Cruise movies and we would watch them all the time,” he explained, a wistful look on his face as he recalled fond memories.

“Cocktail!” Caroline exclaimed.

“Yup, I want to be the sole proprietor of a place where you can shake margaritas bare-chested,” Mike laughed. “It’s going to be called The Last Drop,” he stated, not looking for her approval.

“Great name,” she admitted, nodding her head. “Especially when your folks drop kick you out of the family.”

“I know. I’m preparing to be disowned, which is why I’m getting you used to buying the drinks,” he said, flashing her a smile.

“Well with any luck my business will allow me to continue payin’ for drinks.”

“The purse thing?”

“Yes. The purse thing,” she said, mocking him. “I aim to start a line called Clutch, because it’s one of my favorite handbag styles, and in honor of my aunt Mimi. She always says ‘Find somethin’ you love and just hold onto it.’”

“Sounds like a smart lady.”

 

Author Bio:

Lisa Becker is a romance writer whose previous novels include Click: An Online Love Story, Double Click and Right Click. The books, about a young woman’s search for love online in Los Angeles, have been called, “a fast read that will keep you entertained,” “a fun, quick read for fans of Sex and the City,” and “hard to put down.” The first in the series was optioned for a major motion picture.

Her latest novel, Links, is a second chance romance that explores what happens when two high school classmates have a chance encounter after 15 years. #1 New York Times bestselling author Rachel Van Dyken called Links, “Witty, heartfelt and emotionally satisfying. Everything I want in a second chance romance! Once I picked it up I couldn’t put it down!”

Lisa’s writings about online dating have been featured in Cupid’s Pulse, GalTime.com, Single Edition, The Perfect Soulmate, Chick Lit Central and numerous other book blogs and websites.

As Lisa’s grandmother used to say, “For every chair, there’s a rush.” Lisa is now happily married to a man she met online and lives in Manhattan Beach with him and their two daughters. So, if it happened for her, there’s hope for anyone!

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Book Blitz, Excerpt, and Giveaway: Crown of Ruin

 

Crown of Ruin
Keary Taylor
(Crown of Death #3)
Publication date: June 5th 2018
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance

Logan has returned to Roter Himmel. Once a peaceful haven for the Royals, it is now a kingdom of chaos and distrust. The people may love their queen, but she has never ruled them on her own.

Sevan has seen Cyrus work miracles long ago, and learned his methods herself. His curse has sustained stronger than death before but the visage of Cyrus’ demise is undeniable. Still, Logan refuses to believe this is the end. Cyrus keeps appearing to her in strange dreams, rambling that she must prepare—that the day is coming when night will rule the day.

While the entire world of vampires watches, Logan will take on the weight of the crown, the certainty of impending change, and the threat of war.

They all should have known better than to test her. She’s had multiple lifetimes to prepare for this…

All hail the Queen.

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EXCERPT:

“How long have you lived at Court, Diana?”

She leans forward, bracing her forearms against the edge of the table. Her features are hard, her face angular. I think she just permanently looks angry. “For about three hundred years.”

“And you were born here, yes?” I prompt.

She nods.

I smile, nodding. “I would like to tell you a story, Diana,” I say, mirroring her posture. “A story of when our kind very first came into being. When my husband made himself into the ultimate hunter, but also cursed himself with the craving of blood.”

Diana’s eyes widen a bit and her entire body tightens slightly.

“I watched in horror as he hunted down his first human. I saw his tears as they fell down his face in remorse. Cyrus, the first vampire, like yourself, craved blood and he could not resist the urge to drink. So people went missing and the rumors began to spread in our town.”

I can picture it all. Every detail. Every memory. The beginnings when I wore the face of Sevan and had never died a single death.

But in this moment, I pay exact attention to my words. I control every line and every thought.

“And then when there were two of us, the whisperings grew louder. Dark eyes turned our direction. Our lives were torn apart. We had to leave, or we knew they would turn against us.”

I shiver as I think of that first night in the forest.

“We lived like animals in the woods,” I continue. “And every night, we moved, because always during the day, they hunted us through the forest. With knives and primitive weapons. We didn’t know how they would hurt us. For months and months we were driven from place to place, constantly pushed by fear.”

Diana sits there, very, very still. Frozen. She’s hardly even breathing as she listens to my story.

“After I gave birth, we were once more on the run. One of us would always kill, and most of the time we were not discovered, but the times we were…” I shiver, remembering the terror. “We were strong, we could defend ourselves, but it was the two of us against the entire world. A population of billions.”

I look up and meet her eyes. I lean forward slightly, our faces only a foot apart.

“Roter Himmel was a god-send,” I say. “After years of living in fear and uncertainty, we had somewhere safe. Somewhere we did not have to hide what we were. We grew our family here. We loved and cherished here.”

I sit back, my eyes darkening. “There are over eight billion people in this world, Diana,” I say straight and blunt. “There are roughly fifty-thousand vampires, Born, Royal, or the few Bitten left, throughout the world. There are forces at work in this moment that are trying to destroy Roter Himmel. They would expose our kind to the world, perhaps to change the system. To create a new monarchy. Perhaps to attempt to take over the world.”

I sit forward again, locking my eyes on hers. “Fifty-thousand of us, eight billion of them. I’m not willing to take on those odds and lose the peace and protection of Roter Himmel. Are you willing to take that risk, Diana?”

Her expression has been going slack, slowly, over this entire story time. Her eyes are open, her lips slightly parted.

“We all look the same, loyal or betrayer,” I say. “This may take some time. But if even one of them slips through the cracks, it could mean the end of us all. Are you ready to take the risk, Diana?”

She blinks five times, as if clearing the fog of my story from her brain. “No,” she whispers.

“Do you want to be hunted one day, 160,000 to one?” I ask her.

“No,” she immediately says.

“Do you understand why I must be careful and thorough?”

“Yes, my Queen.” She says it with a little bow of her head.

 

Author Bio:

Keary Taylor is the USA TODAY bestselling author of over twenty novels. She grew up along the foothills of the Rocky Mountains where she started creating imaginary worlds and daring characters who always fell in love. She now splits her time between a tiny island in the Pacific Northwest and Utah, with her husband and their two children. She continues to have an overactive imagination that frequently keeps her up at night.

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Book Blitz, Excerpt, Teasers, and Giveaway: Relegation

 

Relegation
Karri Thompson
(The Van Winkle Project #3)
Published by: Entangled: Teen
Publication date: June 4th 2018
Genres: Dystopian, Young Adult

The end is near—and I’m fated to save humanity.

I’m feared, yet revered. The presidents are leery of me, but I’ve read the files. And I know the truth—at least, I think I do. And I’m the one who is going to tell the clones. They deserve to know.

Michael and I have been forced to fight, to kill. We’ll do anything to keep our daughters safe and free. But we can’t do it alone. There’s a rumor about a secret society eager for battle… and we’re going to find them. Help them end the government’s corruption.

It’s my duty, my calling as the first mother of the new world I want to create.

This started with me, and that’s where it’s going to end.

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EXCERPT:

“What’s going on?” Michael asked. I thought it was Michael. No, maybe it was Travel. Everything spun, my head stretching and coming back as if I’d rocketed down an elevator shaft.

Hands caught me under my arms. Whose hands? I didn’t know. My feet hit the floor, but my knees buckled, and as I was lifted again, I opened my eyes and caught a blur of the room—wood paneling, a pedestal holding a vase of red flowers, and an oriental carpet under my feet.

What was wrong with me? My heartbeat thumped in my ears, the muscles in my legs refused to respond to my mental commands, and my skin hurt as tiny dots of pain erupted from my bones and spread to the surface of my limbs.

“They need to be separated,” a male shouted.

They? Who was they?

His words were sharp and desperate, bordering on panic. The grip under my arms shifted to my waist and my upper body. Limp and trembling with each beat of my heart, I fell against the person holding me. It was Michael. I recognized his spicy cologne and the width of his shoulders against mine.

“Michael, don’t you see what’s happening?” It was Travel. Now I recognized his voice, too, a voice marked with the same cast of anxiety in

Michael’s.

“Travel,” I tried to say. Or maybe I did say it. Had my lips even moved? A numbing heat whipped up my spine and spread through my shoulders and neck. My chin dropped to my chest, and the fuzzy red, white, and green colors I’d seen were replaced with the grey blur of my prison uniform.

“Take her away—now!” Michael shouted, his words seeping deep into my ear where the sounds writhed and burned, the sensation spreading to my forehead.

With each exhale, my hot breath pooled against my chest, stoking my lightheadedness.

“Get her out of here,” Michael said again. “Hurry!”

Her? Who? Me? VW2? Where was my daughter? Michael’s arms were empty, and my own still hung loosely at my sides and hit dumbly against my body when he shifted me closer to him.

“That’s his niece. You just can’t…” Whose voice was that? It was a presidential voice with its commanding yet concerned tone. It had to be Dabner. I wasn’t his niece. I wasn’t anybody’s niece in this century. Who was he talking about?

 

Author Bio:

Growing up in San Diego, California, Karri Thompson spent much of her years at the beach, reading novels, tanning, and listening to music. At SDSU, she earned a BA in English, MA in education, and her teaching credential. As a wife, mother, and high-school English teacher, she began writing novels, giving all of the compelling plots and unique characters in her head a home. Victorian literature rocks her socks, and when she’s not writing, jogging, going to concerts, or watching her son play football, she’s reading Dickens.

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Cover Reveal: Hot Pursuit

 

Hot Pursuit
Kay Marie
(To Catch a Thief #1)
Publication date: August 27th 2018
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

**Special pre-order price of $0.99! Save $3!**

How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days meets White Collar in this sassy and sweet romantic comedy, new from bestselling author Kaitlyn Davis, writing as Kay Marie.

All Jolene Carter has ever wanted is to own a bakery of her own. There’s only one problem. Her father, Robert Carter, is a world-renowned art thief and she’s, well, sort of his protégé. But he’s promised her that this next job in New York will be their last, and she won’t let anyone get in the way of her dreams…especially not the distractingly delicious FBI agent hot on her tail.

Agent Nate Parker has been on the Robert Carter case for years, and if the rumors of the aging criminal’s retirement are true, this might be his last chance to nail him. With the legacy of his late father in the back of his mind, the stakes are more personal than anyone realizes. He won’t let anything stand in the way of justice…especially not the red-headed vixen who keeps giving him the slip.

He’s a cop who’d never bend. She’s a con who’ll never break. But all’s fair in love and larceny…

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Author Bio:

Kaitlyn Davis, a bestselling author with over a quarter of a million books sold, writes young adult fantasy novels under the name Kaitlyn Davis and contemporary romance novels under the name Kay Marie. Publishers Weekly has said, “Davis writes with

confidence and poise,” while USA Today has recommended her work as “must-read romance.”

Always blessed with an overactive imagination, Kaitlyn has been writing ever since she picked up her first crayon and is overjoyed to share her work with the world. When she’s not daydreaming, typing stories, or getting lost in fictional worlds, Kaitlyn can be found playing fetch with her puppy, watching a little too much television, or spending time with her family. If you have any questions for her–about her books, about scheduling an event, or just in general–you may contact her at: KaitlynDavisBooks@gmail.com

Sign up for Kaitlyn’s newsletter to stay up-to-date with all of her new releases, to receive exclusive subscriber bonus content, and more! bit.ly/KaitlynDavisNewsletter

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Cover Reveal: Homecoming

 

Homecoming
Jennifer Allis Provost
(Gallowglass, #3)
Publication date: July 17th 2018
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy

Who wields the power behind the Wild Court?

After months of dealing with gods and monsters in New York, Karina and Robert return to their cottage in Scotland. Chris makes the move as well to start fresh with his girlfriend, Anya—but when they arrive Anya isn’t there. He tracks her down at the pub where her mother, Beira, works, and finds out that Beria’s been holding a grudge against his family for the past few hundred years. Since Beira’s the Cailleach Bheur— the Celtic Queen of Winter—her grudges are a rather big deal.

While Chris deals with Beira, Karina and Robert learn that when Robert was freed from the Minster’s Pine Karina inadvertently left a portal to Elphame open. Now Doon Hill is covered in fairies who are organizing themselves into a new court free of Seelie rule, akin to the Wild Fae of old. What’s worse, Karina’s long-lost uncle appears to be organizing this new court.

Karina closes the door to Elphame, but that only angers the unseen powers behind the fledgling Wild Court, forcing her and Robert to forge alliances with those who’d been their enemies not so long ago. Who can Karina and her gallowglass trust, and who is only out to deceive them?

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**Pre-order it for only 99¢!**

 

Author Bio:

Jennifer Allis Provost writes books about faeries, orcs and elves. Zombies too. She grew up in the wilds of Western Massachusetts and had read every book in the local library by age twelve. (It was a small library). An early love of mythology and folklore led to her epic fantasy series, The Chronicles of Parthalan, and her day job as a cubicle monkey helped shape her urban fantasy, Copper Girl. When she’s not writing about things that go bump in the night (and sometimes during the day) she’s working on her MFA in Creative Nonfiction.

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