Sunday, November 18, 2018

Blog Blitz & Giveaway: Dark Arts and a Daiquiri by Annette Marie

Dark Arts and a Daiquiri
Annette Marie
(The Guild Codex: Spellbound, #2)
Publication date: November 16th 2018
Genres: New Adult, Urban Fantasy

When I found myself facing down the scariest black-magic felon in the city, practically daring him to abduct me, I had to wonder exactly how I ended up here.

It all started when I accidentally landed a job as a bartender—but not at a bar. At aguild, populated by mages, sorcerers, alchemists, witches, and psychics. Good thing this lame-o human is adaptable, right?

Then my favorite guild members—three sexy, powerful, and intermittently charming mages—asked for my help. Did they want access to my encyclopedic knowledge of cocktails? Oh no. They wanted to wrap me up in a pretty ribbon and plunk me in the crosshairs of a murderous rogue to lure him out of hiding.

So that’s what we did. And that’s why I’m here. About to be kidnapped. Oh, and our grand plan for safely capturing said murderous rogue? Yeah, that completely fell apart about two minutes ago.

Why did I agree to this again?


Note: The three mages are definitely sexy, but this series isn’t a reverse harem. It’s 100% fun, sassy, fast-paced urban fantasy.

Tori has no problem getting herself into trouble in every book in the Guild Codex series, but each one is a complete adventure—no cliffhanger endings.


THE GUILD CODEX: SPELLBOUND
Three Mages and a Margarita (#1)
Dark Arts and a Daiquiri (#2)
Two Witches and a Whiskey (#3)

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

“This is really nice,” I gushed, unconcerned by the apartment’s lackluster finishes. Beggars couldn’t be choosers, and having spent the last ten months sleeping on my brother’s sofa, I was ready to overlook anything less than holes in the walls.

Which, unfortunately, had been included in all the apartments we’d viewed so far, along with complimentary mold, cockroaches, and suspicious odors. That wasn’t including the batshit crazy landlords. Did normal people not dabble in real estate investment, or did all the well-adjusted landlords have tenants already?

“It’s clean,” Sin observed. “Running water. Heat. Wait, does it have heat? It’s cold inhere.”

“Well, it is a basement.” I flapped my printout. “It says all utilities are included in the rent. How sweet is that?”

Sin wrinkled her nose suspiciously. “It’s too cheap. There’s got to be something wrong with it.”

“Maybe there’s a hobo living in the crawlspace.” I pointed at a half-height door tucked in a corner of the living room. “That’s a crawlspace, right?”

We crossed the room and I crouched at the door, Sin leaning over my shoulder. I pulled it open. Inside was nothing but impenetrable darkness.

“Use your phone’s flashlight,” Sin suggested. “There must be a light switch or—”

Chill air whispered over my skin and all the hair on my body stood on end—then arctic wind blasted me in the face.

I recoiled, crashing into Sin’s legs. She landed on her ass as the wind howled out of the crawlspace, whipping dust through the room. My printouts went flying and we scrambled backward on our butts with the papers spiraling toward the ceiling.

The darkness in the crawlspace leaked out from the doorway and pooled on the floor like ink. Shadows writhed and something pale materialized in the threshold—a skeletal woman on her hands and knees, toothless mouth gaping, empty eye sockets dribbling black blood.

I took one look at the moaning specter and screamed like the sissy girl that I am.

Sin let out her own terrified shriek as the ghostly woman dragged herself out of the crawlspace, her long hair trailing on the floor. She stretched a hand toward us, blackened fingers curled like claws, and icy gusts lashed at our faces. Still screaming, Sin grabbed my arm, her fingernails digging into my skin. Sharp pain cut through my panic.

I jammed my hand into my pocket and whipped out my trump card—yes, a literal card.

My trusty Queen of Spades was more than it appeared: a sorcerer’s artifact embedded with a spell that reflected magic. Was there any magic here to rebound? I had no idea. Would it work on a ghost? Also no idea. I wasn’t a sorcerer. I was a crime-of-convenience thief and I had only the vaguest notion how to use the card.

But it was the lone magical defense I had, so I thrust it at the phantom and shouted, “Ori repercutio!”

The air rippled and the gale-force wind reversed direction. It slammed into the woman, flinging her back into the crawlspace. Her head hit the door frame with a whack.

“Ow!” she squeaked.

Sin’s scream cut off. In unison, we launched to our feet. We weren’t screaming anymore, but I for one was even more freaked out. The woman was too solid to be a ghost, but holy freaking shit, that body did not belong to a living being—papery skin clinging to bones, empty sockets for eyes, stringy hair down to her knees.

The ghost woman sprang up, raising her hands like claws. “Begone from this place,”she moaned. “Begooooone … or else!”

I tilted my head toward Sin, not daring to take my eyes off the not-a-ghost. “Hey, Sin. Is that … a vampire?”

“No.” She pulled a handful of vials with colorful liquid contents out of her purse. “Not even close.”

Selecting a bottle, she dropped the others back into her bag and unscrewed the top.A hideous smell like burnt iron singed my nose.

“No!” the woman shrieked—except she didn’t sound like a woman anymore. Her voice was two octaves higher and painfully nasal. “Don’t!”

Sin held out the bottle threateningly. “Show us your real form or I’ll drench you!”

“Noooo! Go away!” The woman stomped her foot. “Stupid humans! This is my house!”

Raising her hand higher, Sin started to tip the bottle.

“Uuuuugh. Fine.” The woman threw her hands up—and her body melted. It lost solidity and shrank, then reformed into something new.

The creature was dark green with skin the waxy texture of pine needles. Even with twigs sprouting off its large head in place of hair, it barely reached my waist, and a mixture of spruce branches and pine cones hid its torso. Thin arms and legs stuck out ofthe twiggy mess, its hands and feet comically oversized.

Its eyes, narrowed angrily, dominated its face, the crystalline green irises unnaturally bright and entirely lacking pupils—just giant green orbs.

The creature pointed an accusing finger at us. “This is my house! Leave or I’ll turn you into bean sprouts!”

I cleared my throat. “Okay, not a vampire,” I said to Sin. “What is it?” “This,” Sin replied grimly, “is a faery.”

Author Bio:

Annette Marie is the author of Amazon best-selling YA urban fantasy series Steel & Stone, its prequel trilogy Spell Weaver, and romantic fantasy trilogy Red Winter. Her first love is fantasy, but fast-paced adventures and tantalizing forbidden romances are her guilty pleasures. She lives in the frozen winter wasteland of Alberta, Canada (okay, it's not quite that bad) with her husband and their furry minion of darkness—sorry, cat—Caesar. When not writing, she can be found elbow-deep in one art project or another while blissfully ignoring all adult responsibilities.

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Saturday, November 17, 2018

Blog Tour & Giveaway: Deadly Shadow by Kim Cresswell

Author: Kim Cresswell

Narrator: Robin Siegerman

Length: 6 hours and 17 minutes

Series: The Assassin Chronicles, Book 1

Publisher: Kim Cresswell

Released: Aug. 7, 2018

Genre: Thriller; Paranormal

The Assassin Chronicles TV series is in development with Council Tree Productions. Two recent murders. Two serial killers. A conspiracy that reaches beyond the physical world.

Consumed with grief over the tragic death of her husband, FBI agent Victory McClane is obsessed with finding Ohio’s serial killer, “The Wrapper”.

When another young woman turns up dead and the victim is linked to Derrick Lynn, son of the Secretary of Defense, Victory finds Derrick has all the right answers and is a little too helpful.

Derrick has a secret: He’s a government assassin who uses his unusual paranormal skills to eliminate targets. Determined to keep his own secrets buried, he offers to help find The Wrapper.

But can Victory trust him?

As the body count rises, Victory must cross a dangerous line—into a world of government cover-ups, murder, and betrayal—a decision that will test her limits. And everything she believes in.

My Review:

4 Out Of 5 Stars

Genre: Heart-Wrenching, Mystery, Supernatural, Suspense--

FBI agent Victory has been on the trail of the serial killer The Wrapper for years but has never been able to stop him. When his latest victim is found, Victory knows she needs to step up her game because he is escalating. his kills. Derrick runs a successful business, but nobody knows about his other job where he is a paranormal assassin working for the President and Department of Defense. When the two's lives suddenly intersect. suspicion and danger are the outcome.

I am completely intrigued by the idea of a secret branch of the government that uses paranormal gifts. I grew up hearing rumors of those things, like remote viewers and unethical LSD experiments that were all debunked, but I had to read a book that had a legit agency in work. Add in the police procedural portion of the book after a serial killer and there was no way I did not want to read the book.

The narrator used some interesting vocal changes for certain parts that I had never experienced before, giving an air of authenticity to the story. For example, when someone yelled down a hall, the narrator was farther away making it sound like it was from a distance. Also, when there was a radio playing a podcast or a phone call, the narrator used an affect to making is sound like it came from a radio or speaker. The one negative thing that I encountered about her narration was the male main character Derrick's voice, it was really terrible and gravely like he had a throat injury. Her other male characters were great, but his voice was my least favorite.

This was a very fast, engaging read, but boy was it way more depressing than I anticipated it being. The main character, Victory, has a very hard, tough life that just gets worse. I would like to continue the series, if there is more to come, because now I am invested and curious, but if I had know how this would play out, I am not sure I would have picked it up to read.

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Kim Cresswell. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

Kim Cresswell resides in Ontario, Canada and is the bestselling and award-winning author of the action-packed WHITNEY STEEL series. Kim recently signed a 3-book German translation deal with LUZIFER Verlag for the first three books in the series: Reflection, Retribution and Resurrect. The popular series will be published in German beginning in 2018/2019.

Her romantic thriller, Reflection (A Whitney Steel Novel - Book One), has won numerous awards: RomCon®'s 2014 Readers' Crown Finalist (Romantic Suspense), InD'tale Magazine 2014 Rone Award Finalist (Suspense/Thriller), UP Authors Fiction Challenge Winner (2013), Silicon Valley's Romance Writers of America (RWA) "Gotcha!" Romantic Suspense Winner (2004), Honourable Mention in Calgary's (RWA) The Writer's Voice Contest (2006). Lethal Jouney won RomCon®'s 2014 Readers' Crown (Thriller) and was a finalist in From the Heart Romance Writers (FTHRW) Golden Gate Contest. The Assassin Chronicles TV series is in development with Council Tree Productions, a feature film and TV production company located in Los Angeles, California. The TV series: THE ASSASSIN CHRONICLES is based on Kim's upcoming 4-book paranormal/supernatural suspense thriller series: Deadly Shadow (published May 2018), Invisible Truth, Assassin's Prophecy, and Vision of Fire.
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Narrator Bio

Robin Siegerman was trained as an actor by the acclaimed William Esper in New York, vocally trained by Albert Hague, a Tony award-winning, Broadway composer, and trained in speech and dialects by dialect coach to the stars, Timothy Monich. Robin has a wide range of voices, accents, dialects and characters to give voice work color. Noteably, in the spring of 2018, she was nominated for the narration of the WWII documentary Harry's Story in the Best International Performance category at the One Voice Awards in England. Robin also has extensive on-camera experience as a spokes-person for a series of corporate training videos; a decor expert on various TV and radio broadcasts; a frequently requested keynote speaker at home and consumer trade shows, libraries and private industry events; has hosted her own internet radio show; wrote and voiced a daily home renovation information series for radio; and wrote and voiced a regular feature on green living radio. Currently Robin writes & produce promo videos with VO for small to medium size businesses, along with narrating audiobooks from her broadcast-quality home studio.
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Giveaway

Prize: The Whitney Steel Trilogy On Audiobook

Deadly Shadow Giveaway: The Whitney Steel Trilogy Audiobooks

Nov. 13th:

Dab of Darkness Book Reviews

The Book Junkie Reads . . .

Nov. 14th:

In Patti's Imagination

Nov. 15th:

Lilly's Book World

Nov. 16th:

Guilty Indulgence Bookclub

Nov. 17th:

Book Addict

T's Stuff

Nov. 18th:

Smada's Book Smack

Jazzy Book Reviews

Nov. 19th:

Lomeraniel

The Book Addict's Reviews

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Friday, November 16, 2018

Blog Tour & Giveaway: Booke of the Hidden Series by Jeri Westerson

Book Blurb:

Deadly Rising

A Booke of the Hidden Novel #2

by Jeri Westerson

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Pub Date: 10/23/18

Things were quiet in Strange Herbs & Teas. For about a week.

Our crossbow slinging hero and her ragtag gang of Wiccans have earned some rest. But when Kylie learns that the Booke may have released not one, but two creatures of horror out into the world, it’s up to her to save Moody Bog. Again.

Calling upon the devilishly handsome demon Erasmus once more for help, Kylie’s determined to handle the mischief of the Booke and go back to a normal life. But when digging through Moody Bog’s history leads her to the ghost of her grandfather, the past she once knew is turned upside down.

Can Kylie save the town and her grandfather, or will the horrors of the Booke be too much to handle?

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My Review:

5 Out Of 5 Stars

Genre: Another-World, Heart-Wrenching, Mystery, Romance, Scary, Supernatural, Suspense, Urban Fantasy, Werewolves, Witches--

Picking up just days after the events of the Booke of the Hidden, Kylie is trying to get her life on track and put the demon mess behind her. But what she doesn't realize is that the Booke is not through with her, in actuality her demon hunting is just getting started and it is up to her to keep the town safe.

And speaking of Bookes, my own little shadow must’ve felt lonely, appearing beside me with a decided pop. Everyone turned to look, then went back to what they were doing, as if disappearing and reappearing Bookes were an everyday occurrence . I guessed now they were.

I was lucky enough to stumble across the Booke of the Hidden last year in a tiny little local bookstore in Arizona where I was sent to do a work conference, and with a few hours to kill of course I found a bookstore! I saw the book sitting on a display table, the cover was eye catching, and it had my favorite kind of sticker on the front- signed by the author. I am a sucker for signed books, and this was the first in an urban fantasy series which just so happens to be my favorite genre, so I was sold- let's call it kismet. The book has lived happily on my shelf for the last year, but I had not gotten a chance to read it due to life until I saw that book 2 was coming out and that was the best motivation to jump in.

I completely love this series! This is very much so a binge-worthy series, easy to finish one book and then jump right into the next with no time passing at all and no unnecessary rehashing of the plot. The writing style is so approachable and the characters are so complex and feel like I knew everyone well, even the side characters. Also, the totally misplaced snippets of humor and ridiculousness of certain situations (Erasmus belittling little Kylie's art work was the best!) made me so happy, a book that can break tension with snark or humor will always win with me.

Talk about man troubles, Kylie has them in spades. Between wanting Erasmus, the illusive demon she should avoid if she knows what is good for her, and Ed the sweet Sheriff who is everything good in her world. And let's not forget Jeff, the ex who just will not let her go. I guess you can call this a love triangle, and Kylie is really torn emotionally and mentally- but we all know that only one of these men could possible give her a happily ever after (but keep in mind that this is not a romance, just so happens to have a dash thrown in...And this is not the happily ever after kind of book! You have been warned.)

Side note for you all: My mom has been body snatched this last month and turned into a reader, the first time in my whole life she has voluntarily picked up a book to read (I think she read more than me this month, which I thought was basically impossible for anyone to read more than me!). When she asked for a recommendation, I told her the Booke of the Hidden. Well, she gobbled it down in a day and picked up Deadly Rising right after, having read them both in less than 24 hours, and wanted to know why I had not finished the second book yet (keep in mind I just started reading it) so we could chat. Her only complaint, and her anger directed at me for "making her read these books", is that there is a shocking cliff hanger ending and rest of the series is not out! Jeri recently said that there will be 6 books total in the series, but as of right now only these two are published and the ending is one that needs follow-up, asap! My mom now follows Jeri on every social media platform Jeri is on so my Mom can be the first to learn more news about the series. Sorry for creating a virtual stalker, Jeri!

Overall this has been a fantastic series full of battle, angst, supernatural toils, and a nice heaping of steam. I am so excited to see what Kylie will encounter next and who will join her merry band of people next. I can honestly say I have no idea what will come next.

Catch up on the series with Book 1: Booke of the Hidden

Book Blurb:

“Westerson creates an utterly believable history of witches, demons, and magic for her claustrophobic New England village including a heroine with enough spark, smarts, and stubbornness to keep both the bad guys and the deliciously dangerous love-interest on their toes.” —Kat Richardson, author of the Greywalker series

After a relationship gone bad in California, Kylie Strange moves to rural Maine for a fresh start. But she gets more than she bargained for when she finds a supernatural book bricked into the wall of her new tea shop, Strange Herbs and Teas. As soon as she opens the Booke of the Hidden, the quiet town of Moody Bog suddenly becomes a lot more interesting.

First the mysterious and handsome Erasmus Dark shows up unannounced, claiming to be a demon and warning Kylie of untold destruction. She waves him off, until a museum proprietor turns up dead, and the sheriff targets Kylie as a suspect. With the help of Erasmus and a ragtag group of local Wiccans, Kylie unravels the Booke's secrets, and they begin to believe the culprit is someone--or something--much more sinister than a run-of-the mill human murderer.

Award-winning author Jeri Westerson crafts a tale of magic, murder, and romance, drawing us into the mystical world that surrounds Strange Herbs and Teas.

Goodreads | Amazon | Apple | B&N | Google | Kobo

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Author Bio:

Los Angeles native and award-winning author Jeri Westerson writes the critically acclaimed Crispin Guest Medieval Mysteries, historical novels, paranormal novels, and LGBT mysteries. To date, her medieval mysteries have garnered twelve industry award nominations, from the Agatha to the Shamus. Kirkus Review said of her latest Crispin Guest Medieval Mystery A MAIDEN WEEPING, “Once again Guest’s past misdeeds actually help him in the present in a case that includes plenty of red herrings and an interesting look at medieval jurisprudence.” Jeri is former president of the SoCal chapter of Mystery Writers of America and frequently guest lectures on medieval history at local colleges and museums. She lives in southern California with her home-brewing husband, a complacent tortoise, and 40,000 bees.
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Blog Blitz & Giveaway: False Memory by Meli Raine

False Memory
Meli Raine
(False Memory, #1)
Publication date: November 15th 2018
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

It all started with the bereavement flowers with my name on them.

Not the best way to wake up, right? I work in a flower shop. I know a funeral arrangement when I see one.

I know a killer when I see one, too. And one is standing in my hospital room right now, straight behind the man who saved my life.

I can’t tell anyone the truth, because that’s the fastest way to really die. So I do the next best thing. I “lose” my memory.

I fake my amnesia.

Pretending not to remember a brutal attempted murder has its perks. The killer is backing down, spending less time around me, loosening the noose.

The less I claim to recall, the more my rescuer, Duff, works to help me “remember.” I hate lying to him.

But he doesn’t understand that my memory is dangerous. To me. And to him.

Fooling everyone isn’t easy. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done.

Except it’s starting to look like I’ve been fooling myself.

In more ways than one.

Read Book 1 in the newest series from USA Today bestselling author Meli Raine.

Goodreads / Bookbub / iBooks


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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Thursday, November 15, 2018

Blog Blitz & Giveaway: Daisy’s Run by Scott Baron

Daisy’s Run
Scott Baron
(The Clockwork Chimera , #1)
Publication date: November 14th 2018
Genres: Adult, Science Fiction

Life in deep space could be a drag sometimes, but Daisy supposed things could have been worse. They were still alive, after all, which was always a plus in her book. Now if only she could figure out who, or what, was endangering her return home, things would be just peachy.

It had been one hell of a way to start the day––being rudely snapped from a deep cryo-sleep, and in the middle of a ship-wide crisis to boot––but Daisy was pleased to note that the ship had not decompressed, the crew hadn’t been blasted into space, and,most importantly, they hadn’t simply blown up. At least not yet. So, they had that going for them, but being stuck on a damaged ship in the inky depths of space as it limped toward Earth was not exactly the relaxing trip home she’d imagined.

With the powerful AI supercomputer guiding the craft beginning to show some disconcerting quirks of its own, and its unsettling cyborg assistant nosing into her affairs, Daisy’s unease was rapidly growing. Add to the mix a crew of mechanically-enhanced humans, any one of whom she suspected might not be what they seemed, and Daisy found herself with a sense of pending dread tickling the periphery of her mind.

Something was very much not right––she could feel it in her bones. The tricky part now was going to be figuring out what the threat was, before it could manifest from a mere sinking feeling in her gut into a potentially deadly reality.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

“Should we wake them? I mean, the ship is on fire, after all.”

Barry didn’t seem stressed. In fact, his voice rarely showed any extremes of emotion at all, though that was to be expected of a cyborg.

“It is a bit early, but yes, given the problems I am experiencing with my internal sensors and fire suppression systems, I think that would be prudent,” the disembodied voice of Malorie, the ship’s artificial intelligence system, replied. “Though I would like you on hand, just in case there are any issues cycling the crew out of cryo-sleep so early, and on such short notice.”

“Of course, Mal. Understood.”

The handsome flesh-and-metal man with sandy-blond hair rose from his seat in the control room and stepped into the double airlock leading to the central passageway network. Starboard Peripheral Corridor One would have been the faster route, but after the impact, with the possibility of undetected depressurization in any of the damaged and offline pod sections or one of the unmonitored inter-compartmental conduit routing spaces, he’d just have to take the long way. The inconvenience, he reasoned, was certainly preferable to being unceremoniously blasted into space.

The Váli was a sturdy ship, and she had only been nudged slightly off course by the collision. There was time to set things right, but sooner was far better than later. At the speed and distance they were traveling, “slightly” could easily become “a lot” quickly.

Normally Mal would simply right the course herself, diverting a fraction of her attention toward adjusting the maneuvering thrusters to gently ease them back on target. In the event of a fire of any significance, however, protocol required her to wake the crew of the Váli.

The ship’s unusual name had been taken from old Norse mythology, given to it by a cybernetically-enhanced engineer with a fondness for ancient texts. Váli, the son of Odin, brother of Thor. A god prophesied to survive Ragnarok, the end of times.

She was a fast ship, no doubt, and extremely nimble, when not laden with additionalresearch, living, and lab pods locked to her support frame for such a long voyage. That bulk-saving performance, however, came at a price. The multiple layers of outer shielding found on larger, sturdier vessels—the kind that would have prevented such a minor impact from damaging them in the first place—were sorely lacking, and so it passed that the ship had succumbed quite spectacularly to what would have been an otherwise minor incident.

Author Bio:

A native Californian, Scott Baron was born in Hollywood, which he claims may be the reason for his off-kilter sense of humor. Before taking up residence in Venice Beach,he spent a few years studying abroad before settling into the film and television industry, where he has worked off and on for some time. Scott not only writes, but is also involved in indie film and theater both in the U.S. and abroad.

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