Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Dystopian Giveaway Hop

I am giving away an Ebook copy of Kailin Gow's Fade.  If you've already read Fade, you may still enter.  I will giveaway any of the sequels in this series, or any other Dystopain ebook under $5.  The giveaway is open to anyone that can accept ebooks - whether via Nook, Kindle or Smashwords.  Be sure to check out the other blogs hosting giveaways.

A Thriller from Bestselling Author Kailin GowWhat if you found out you never existed?"My name is Celestra Caine. I am seventeen years old, which makes me a senior at Richmond High. I never thought this would happen to me, but it has... I'm one of those people you see every day, go to school with, remember seeing at the supermarket or the mall, and then one day you don't hear about them any longer. They're gone, and eventually, you forget them."

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Sunday, October 28, 2012

[Review] Swift by Heather London

BB Book Tours
Book info:
Meredith Martin is being hunted by evil, for something she is destined to become, but knows nothing about.
 After graduating from high school, Meredith is ready to leave the place that has been a constant reminder of what happened to her as a child. She was just eight years old when her family died in a mysterious car accident, taking the secret of her destiny with them. It’s not until a new family moves to town that she realizes leaving may not be as easy as she once thought.
Meredith feels an instant connection towards the Harpers, especially the good-looking, mysterious Blake and his overly friendly sister, Abby. After a series of bizarre events that happen too often to be coincidence, Meredith begins to realize that she is at the center of something larger than herself—possibly the same thing that killed her parents and twin sister many years ago. Nightmarish visions and resurfacing memories push Meredith closer to Blake, leading her to discover her destiny and other buried secrets.
 As Meredith tries to understand her new world, she will be put to the ultimate test, and her strength and courage will be challenged more than she ever imagined.

My Review:   Meredith is trying to find her place in the world.  She lives in a small town with her aunt because her parents and twin sister died in an accident 10 years ago.  How awful that must be, losing your family - especially a twin.  In the beginning Meredith is crying at her family's graves.  While there she meets Abby, who is new to town.  The two quickly become friends.  Meredith's love interest in the story is Abby's brother, Blake.
Part of the finding her place in the world, involves some weridness.  Meredith is discovering that there is more to who she is, and more to the deaths of her family than she thought.  With Abby and Blake to help her, Meredith begins to uncover her destiny.
My favorite character in this book is Abby.  She is just awesome!  She's the kind of person that I'd love to have as a friend.  I like Blake - I just wish that there was more build-up in he and Abby's romance.
Overall the book is very well written.  It has just the right pace.  I didn't notice many errors in grammar, which is always a plus.  The book ends nice and neatly, and could be a stand alone, but there will be a follow up book.  I will be waiting to read it!
goodreads link:

Heather London:

Heather London is a young adult author who loves to write stories full of fantasy, romance, and science fiction. She is a lover of only the finest of coffee and premium craft beer, but will settle for anything chocolate, regardless of its quality. Heather lives with her husband in Dallas, TX where she is currently working hard on her next project.


Saturday, October 27, 2012

[Review & Character Bios] Finding Summerland by Paige Bleu

About the Book:

After his brothers recent disappearance Wesley Rochester wished he could just fade into obscurity. Searching for closure, he's haunted by visons. Consumed with decoding the messages, he begins turning dangerously deeper inward. Enter an intriguing, 'not quite' human stranger, who mysteriously arrives just as he feels all hope is lost. Together they begin to realize that their destinies are intricately tangled in a drama reaching far beyond the realms of the wold they know. Discovering the secrets plaguing Wesley since childhood are no coincidence, and everything he believes is shattered.

Captivated by her, he must decide between the life he has and the one he'd forgotten.

'Finding Summerland' is like 'Twilight' in the sense that it is a supernatural, coming of age romance—but has a genre bending, metaphysical element and a much deeper rabbit hole. Follow the journey of two star crossed souls as they explore who they are and the ties that bind them. Enter a world intentionally forgotten. A place buried by history, where only the chosen are aware of its existence. A place covenants are made and broken, where myth leads to truth and forbidden love threatens to destroy or be destroyed, becoming just another casualty in their shadow war. The introductory novel in a series of five, called 'The Ameryn Chronicles'—but compelling enough to stand alone—'Finding Summerland' is sure to be savored by anyone craving to stretch the bounds of ordinary imagination, edgy enough to engage readers who enjoy unraveling a mystery, and sweet enough to grab onto the hearts of the romance lovers! Where legends breathe and dreams are alive. A 'trippy' journey to a new reality.

My Review:  I can't say enough how much I like YA books told from a male POV.  Summerland is told from Wes Rochester's POV, which made summerland different from any other mermaid story I've read.  I've really been into mermaids lately.  Wes, is not your typical YA male.  He isn't the big-shot, star athelete, model student, etc, etc.  In fact, he has always kind of lived in his brother, Channing's shadow.  Until Channing disappears. Anyway, Wes is kind of moody sometimes, has a learning disabilitiy and thinks some rather un-nice things about his classmates and the girls at his school.  And then there is the weird stuff - the drawings he makes in his sleep. 

On a beach trip with his friend, he meets Olivia - who's eyes he has been drawing in his sleep.  Olivia says she's from France which explains why she doesn't know about cell phones and other uberAmerican things.  They start to develop a relationship over time, and Oliva eventually enrolls in Wes' high school.  Olivia is hiding something though.  Well several things.  What I'm not going to tell you.  But could Olivia's secret have anything to do with Channing's disappearance?  You will have to read and find out.

I thought this book has a lot of promise.  I really liked the main characters in the book, and thought they were well described and thought out.  There are a lot of names thrown around, and some of them never get mentioned again.  Maybe they will show up in one of the sequels?  Also, this book seems like it has a lot of set-up.  There are some things described in the prequel, that don't really get mentioned again in this book. That's really my only issue, but hopefully that will be resolved in the next book. 

Overall, I enjoyed Summerland and I look forward to the next book in the series.
Links :

Character Bios:


Olivia is searching for answers of her own when she bumps into Wesley one night on the beach. Shy and mysterious, she's clearly different from most other girls in town. Beautiful, but unaware of it, Olivia is refreshing and intriguing. People gravitate to her wherever she goes, including the stuffy socialites Wesley has to impress for his family's sake. Home schooled, she's traveled the world and is well versed, cultured, but also very organic. Wesley feels he's never met anyone more real than Olivia and pulls her into his family fold, fiercely protective of her, wanting to be as close to her as possible. She soon shares, all is not what it seems, and the demons of her own she's trying to bury. The two have an unexplainable connection, drawn to one another almost insatiably,

as they get closer and closer to each other, and answers. But there's a hidden force threatening to pull Olivia back, and the pedestal Wesley's put her on, may come crumbling down.

Channing Rochester:

High school football star, popular, handsome, and rich, it seemed Channing Rochester had it all. Girls fantasized about being with him, and every guy wanted to be him, or at least in his circle. The oldest of the Rochester children, he is poised to walk in his father's footsteps. Close to his brother Wesley, who is only a grade behind

him, he does his best to help Wes 'fit in' and has always been loyal to him. A media darling and savvy speaker, Channing has no trouble assimilating in the affluent company his family keeps. Considered highly eligible, everyone wants a piece of him and Channing loves the attention. Then, on his graduation trip, everything changes. Channing mysteriously vanishes, immortalizing him, as questions and rumors swirl in the high brow 'River Grove'.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Promo Post for Libera Me by Christine Fonseca & Zane's Playlist

Welcome to the Virtual Blog Tour for LIBERA ME, Book #2 in the Requiem Series by Christine Fonseca.
Beginning after Lacrimosa and the short story Mea Culpa, Libera Me follows Zane and Aydan as they try to figure out who Nessa really is. Here's the blurb:
What happens when everything you’ve sacrificed for is lost? 
Aydan thought Nesy’s death would be the end of him, until he meets Nessa and his hope is restored. Could she be Nesy reborn? He is certain she must be. That is, until her lack of memories and incessant nightmares begin to erode his faith.

Zane is used to trusting his mind, his wisdom and his angelic senses. But these attributes are no help with Nessa. He has no way to be certain of her identity, no way to know the truth. That is, unless he listens to the one thing he has refused to acknowledge throughout his existence - he feelings for Nesy. 

Blind to both angel and demon, Aydan and Zane must figure out the truth behind Nesy's identity before all is lost, Azza discovers the truth and the Beast is again unleashed. 

The lines between good and evil have never been so blurred.

Libera Me officially releases October 30. And be sure to check out the other books in the series:
MEA CULPA (Free from Amazon and Smashwords)

Zane's Playlist

Thanks so much for hosting a leg of the tour for Libera Me. Today, I wanted to share Zane’s playlist.
Each song carries some of Zane’s emotions towards Nesy and the mess he feels responsible for creating, as well as the gifts he offers Nessa and others.       
· Something I Can Never Have (Nine Inch Nails)
· Iridescent (Lincoln Park)
· Breaking Inside (Shinedown)
· Lover’s Requiem (I am Ghost)
· Your Guardian Angel (Red Jumpsuit Apparatus)
Here is the link to the playlist on

About Christine:

School psychologist by day, critically acclaimed YA and nonfiction author by night, Christine Fonseca believes that writing is a great way to explore humanity. Her many titles include TRANSCEND, DIES IRAE, LACRIMOSA, MEA CULPA, and in nonfiction: 101 SUCCESS SECRETS FOR GIFTED KIDS and EMOTIONAL INTENSITY IN GIFTED STUDENTS.
When she’s not writing or spending time with her family, she can be sipping too many skinny vanilla lattes at her favorite coffee house or playing around on Facebook and Twitter. Catch her daily thoughts about writing and life on her blog.
For more information about Christine Fonseca or the series, visit her website – or her blog

To celebrate to release and thank her readers, Christine is hosting a little contest honoring each of the main characters. Prizes include a new release YA book, Book swag, and even some of her own titles. She is also giving a Kindle as part of her Fall Release Party. Check out both giveaways below.

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Refocusing by Guest Author P.G. Shriver


 My favorite time to think about my writing, plan my books, or just get my head together and focused for writing, is in the early morning. I wake up, get a cup of coffee, and sit at my computer where I choose from sixty or so books to work on. So many ideas flow through my mind all of the time, I sometimes become overwhelmed with all of them and get the stereotypical writer's block. When this happens, I don't want to look at my computer.

I can't choose which book to work on.

I can't focus on one book or the other.

I don't want to write.

The fun is gone.

When writer's block takes over, I am completely lost and non-productive in the one task that I enjoy more than life... writing! I have to refocus.

 I have always been an animal lover. We have four horses, ten cats, and cows.  Most importantly, we have two large dogs, a Great Pyrenees named Reba and a very special, my pal, mutt almost as big as her. His name is Domino. When I get writer's block, they become my inspiration, my focus, my knock-down-that-stupid-wall-and-get-writing fans. If I wake up in the morning and can't write anything before daylight, I put on my sneakers and walk with my dogs. I do not walk my dogs; they do not walk me. We live in the country, so I don't have the stress of following them around with little bags. I don't have to have them on a leash. Our walk is complete and total relaxation and activity. It's a time for me to get my heart pumping, smell the earth in its natural aroma, and stroke some fur on the move. My dogs love walking with me, and I them.

 The entire time we walk my mind relaxes, all thoughts of panic dissolve and I can come home to my writing refreshed and ready with new ideas that filled my mind while out. Everyone needs to get away sometimes to improve their craft. I don't have to get far away. I just need to go outside and stretch while my Domino stretches with me. I just need to step toward the driveway and see that big, goofy, yay-we're-going-for a-walk smile on Reba's face! I love my dogs. They are my inspiration.

Title: Dead Perfect
Author: P. G. Shriver
Publisher: Self Published
Pages: 230
My lifelong dreams never included falling in love. Graduating top of the class, going to college somewhere far away and starting a life in a place where my alcoholic mother could never find me were the first three goals on my list. Then the unexpected auto accident with Mother, after her regular doses of vodka, altered all of that. With her gone, my life and my perspective changed forever.  
Desperate to find Joanie so I could break free, I returned to my old school. The search led me to her, my Aphrodite, a familiar lost look in her soulful eyes. Fantasies of her forced reasoning from my mind. I had to meet her! Once fallen, would her love for me survive the ghostly secrets haunting us?
Author Links:
 About P. G. Shriver
Born in California, and raised in Minnesota and Texas, P.G. spent her early years writing poetry and winning poetry contests, while escaping the drama in her own childhood by reading great books for children. Ever since her earliest days, she loved story telling. She wrote numerous short stories in High School and her early college years, continually trying to relive that first experience at the age of seven of seeing her name in print in the local newspaper. 
P.G. sought her education at the University of Texas, where she studied English, literature, and Education. During the entire process of earning her BA and M.Ed, she never stopped writing and trying to be published.  It was during this time that her first children's book No More Stinkbugs!  was accepted for publication by Castle Keep Press. Many of her stories develop from nature.
P.G. graduated college and began her career in education, another great world that offered real experiences to humor and delight through children's books. She watched children interact, bringing to surface her own experiences as a child and yet more events to write about. While teaching, she discovered many great books for young people, such as The Watsons Go to Birmingham-1963, Maniac Magee, So. B. It and many more. She is a fan of Dean Koontz novels, too, and loves reading fantasy and paranormal books.
P.G. was married 20 years in March 2012 and has a bright, young daughter who has begun her own college career. She lives on a small farm in Texas with her family and animals. P.G. has experienced great love and loss throughout her life. Those her family has lost have dedications in her books.
P.G. has two young adult books published, Dead Perfect and The Gifted Ones: The Fairytale the first book in The Gifted Ones Trilogy. She also has several children's books written under Gean Penny, her pseudonym.  P. G. has since dissolved her contract for her first book with Castle Keep Press and moved the title to her own imprint, Gean Penny Books.

YA Mythology Giveaway Hop

I am giving away an ebook copy of Half-Blood by Jennifer Armentrout.  To enter please use the Rafflecopter form below.  Then be sure to check out all the other blogs on the tour hosting giveaways!

The Hematoi descend from the unions of gods and mortals, and the children of two Hematoi-pure-bloods-have godlike powers. Children of Hematoi and mortals-well, not so much. Half-bloods only have two options: become trained Sentinels who hunt and kill daimons or become servants in the homes of the pures.Seventeen-year-old Alexandria would rather risk her life fighting than waste it scrubbing toilets, but she may end up slumming it anyway. There are several rules that students at the Covenant must follow. Alex has problems with them all, but especially rule #1:Relationships between pures and halfs are forbidden.Unfortunately, she's crushing hard on the totally hot pure-blood Aiden. But falling for Aiden isn't her biggest problem--staying alive long enough to graduate the Covenant and become a Sentinel is. If she fails in her duty, she faces a future worse than death or slavery: being turned into a daimon, and being hunted by Aiden. And that would kind of suck.
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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Why I Love London by Guest Author HELEN SMITH

Why I Love London

All my books are set in London, including my latest, The Miracle Inspector, a dystopian novel thattakes place in the near future. England has been partitioned and a big fence has been built around London. Schools and theatres have been closed down and women are not allowed to work outside the home. Parks are used like giant allotments to grow fruit and vegetables, and sheep are herded down Piccadilly towards Green Park to graze. It’s a kind of ghost town, with very few people on the streets unless they’re members of the ruling elite, travelling in official cars. This is because women are not allowed out of their homes unless they’re visiting members of their family (leading to all sorts of subterfuge, with women claiming to be related to each other so they can get out and about) and many of the men have been dragged off to prison on trumped up charges.

The real London doesn’t have a big fence around it, though it does sometimes feel as ifthe cityis functioning like a separate nation state inside the UK, with people who live here only interested in what’s happening in London, and identifying as Londoners rather than English, British or (since many come from abroad) the nationality of their country of origin. Some have a kind of dual nationality – they’re Londoners and they’re Jamaican. They’re Londoners and they’re Welsh or Scottish or Sri Lankan or German.

But in all other respects, the dystopian London I have created in The Miracle Inspector is very different from the real London. The real London is a crowded place of intellectual and creative freedom. It’s a vibrant, diverse, crazy, exciting place that’s great to live in and fun to visit.

Though I was born here, I was raised elsewhere in England when I was a child, and returned to claim it when I was eighteen. I have considered living in New York, San Francisco and Paris (which city-lover hasn’t?) and I lived for a short while in Sydney, but I have never left London for longer than a year and a half, and then only foran exciting adventure that took me traveling around the world with my daughter when she was young.

One of the reasons I love London so much is that I knew about it from literature before I lived here. Though it was sometimes portrayed as dangerous and dirty, it was always an exciting place full of people from all over the world, a centre for culture and a place of freedom where inventiveness and creativity could flourish. Whatever you want, London has it, whether it’s art and culture, restaurants, nightclubs, concerts, parks, markets, beautiful buildings, history or(whether you want it or not, let’s face it, you’re going to need it) employment. It’s an expensive city but a lot of the entertainment is free, including all public art galleries and museums, and there are cut-price tickets available for the theatres. Or you can just walk around and look. It’s dirty! (Why don’t people pick up their litter? Why do they drop it in the first place?) But it’s beautiful.

Despite all the attractions it has to offer, what makes London such a special place is the people. There are people living and working here from every country in the world. Some have come to seek their fortune, some have come to study, some have found love, and some are seeking sanctuary. London is a city of immigrants – not just from other countries, but from other parts of our country. There are Londoners who were born and raised here, but still more, like me, have come to claim it. It means that Londoners are not particularly friendly to visitors (we’re all strangers here) nor unfriendly (it’s not my city; it belongs to all of us).

London is exciting to write about because of the landmarks and historical settings that are recognisable even to readers who have never been here; because of the eccentricities and diversity of the people; and because it’s constantly changing – pin it down, write about a moment in time, and you find you have recorded a moment of history to add to all the other literature about this amazing city.

London’s wonderful. Come and visit!

About the Author:

Helen Smith is a member of the Writers Guild of Great Britain and English PEN. She traveled the world when her daughter was small, doing all sorts of strange jobs to support them both – from cleaning motels to working as a magician’s assistant – before returning to live in London where she wrote her first novel which was published by Gollancz (part of the Hachette Group).

She is the author of bestselling cult novel Alison Wonderland. She writes novels, poetry, plays and screenplays and is the recipient of an Arts Council of England Award. She’s a long-term supporter of the Medical Foundation for the Victims of Torture and mentors members of an exiled writers group to help them tell their stories.

Her latest book is the dystopian thriller The Miracle Inspector.

Visit her website at
Friend her on Twitter: emperorsclothes
Become a fan at Facebook:
Friend her at Goodreads:
Pick up a copy of The Miracle Inspector at Amazon:

About the Book:
The Miracle Inspector is a dystopian thriller set in the near future. England has been partitioned and London is an oppressive place where poetry has been forced underground, theatres and schools are shut, and women are not allowed to work outside the home. A young couple, Lucas and Angela, try to escape from London – with disastrous consequences.
“…this is an absolutely exceptional piece of fiction, a work of art befitting the best in socially-conscious literature.”

– Journal of Always Reviews
“…Only occasionally does a piece of fiction leap out and demand immediate cult status. Alison Wonderland is one.”

– The Times
“…Smith is gin-and-tonic funny.”
– Booklist
“Smith has a keen eye for material details, but her prose is lucid and uncluttered by heavy description. Imagine a satire on Cool Britannia made by the Coen Brothers.”
– Times Literary Supplement

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Spooktacular Giveaway Hop

I am giving away a book of your choice valued at $8 or less from Amazon or the Book Depository.  This giveaway is open to any country that the Book Depository ships to.  Enter using the rafflecopter form.  Then check out the 400+ other blogs taking place in the hop.

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Monday, October 22, 2012

Be Careful Or You Just Might End Up In My Novel By Christie Rich

Sounds like the makings of a bumper sticker, right?  Well, it is.  I actually won a contest and got this puppy in the mail…and I absolutely love it.

I’ve had some strange things happen to me in my life.  I’m an observer by nature, so I probably notice things others might not.  That being said, I’ve got a couple examples to share with you that might just end up in one of my novels some day.

I work at a clinic that happens to be attached to a hospital.  Those of you who are familiar with health care know just how weird things can get, but this one floored me.  A few months ago, after a particularly hectic morning of phone calls and trying to slog through piles of paperwork, I went to lunch.  The usually long line wasn’t that bad, so I was able to get my food and was on my way in a flash.  An older couple walked by me, heads turning back to stare at something down the hall.

I’d never seen an actual warlock in person, but I was about to.  Once I bypassed the gawking duo, I caught my first glimpse.  He was huge, not only tall, but wide in a way that might have been fat, but might have been ten gun holsters slung across his back.

I say might because he wore a cloak.  I’m talking pointy hat and draping fabric sewn in a funky patchwork pattern.  The ensemble did nothing for his physique, but it did make my hair stand on end.  Suffice it to say I bypassed the elevators Mr. Magic waited for and headed to the next set.  No way was I getting in a four by four box with that guy.

On my way to escape, security passed me.  I expected a shrill code silver to come across the loud speaker any moment alerting the staff that yes, indeed, an armed man was in our hospital, but thankfully none came.
I’m not sure what happened after that.  For all I know he was a burn victim who was trying to hide his scars, but couldn’t he have at least picked the non pointy hat cloak, or I don’t know, a hoodie?  It’s funny how certain moments have stayed with me throughout my life.

One of the weirdest came on vacation.  My family mostly lived in Utah, USA growing up.  I say mostly because we also lived in Arizona and California off and on.
We have a lot of relatives in Arizona and most summers were spent basking in the 120 degree desert heat without air conditioning, mind you.  So suffice it to say we generally travelled from my home to Arizona at night.

One year, when I was much older, my brother and I took turns driving.  I had made it all the way from Salt Lake City to Kanab, Utah.  It was probably a six hour shift.  My brother took over after that and we were on our way again.  Unfortunately we followed an aunt’s advice to use a “short cut” to get to Page, Arizona.  Well, the short cut ended up costing us two hours and we almost drove right into a river.  Long story, but holy crow that was a scary dirt road to nowhere.

Anyway, we finally made it back onto pavement and past Page.  My brother, making up for lost time, was driving about 90 miles per hour on a lone stretch of highway between Page and Flagstaff.  It’s pretty barren country so, as you can expect, most of us were trying to sleep.  I was crammed in the back seat of my little Ford Festiva with my three sisters, while my mom occupied the front passenger seat.
I’d just about drifted off when I heard a horrible string of curses.  I jolted upright, only to see some dude standing in the middle of the road.  His arms and legs were spread wide and his head was lifted toward the sky.

I’d barely had enough time to think what the heck when my brother swerved to miss the guy, who apparently had no intention of getting out of the way.  He wasn’t trying to flag us down; he was more than likely trying to rob us if the three guys in the ditch were any indication.

Sound fun?  We laughed about it later, but at the time the experience put us all on edge.  We were a lot more careful through that stretch of desert on our way back.  Thankfully, now when I go to Arizona, I fly.

My point here is that scene stuck with me for quite a few years now, and I actually used part of it in a novel I started but haven’t had time to finish yet.  I thought it would be fun to share that with you today:

I heard the thud before his half naked body rolled across the hood toward me.  The windshield buckled in a deafening crack on impact.  I screamed, losing my grip on the steering wheel.  The car skidded wildly, throwing him onto the pavement, before it jerked to a sudden stop.

My pulse thundered in my ears.  What had I just done?

I covered my eyes with trembling hands, not wanting to see it:  his body crumpled on the road, broken.  No one survived that kind of impact.  I sat there stunned for a few moments then snapped out of it.  What if he wasn’t dead?

I reached for my cell, hoping it would work between nowhere and Phoenix.  My fingers fumbled with the numbers until a shadow slid across my vision.  I jerked away from the window.

He stood there watching me.

Heaving a relieved sigh, I let my mouth curve in a tremulous smile.

How could you adequately apologize for nearly killing someone?

He pressed his palms to the glass, his fingers spread wide.  The muscles in his forearms flexed under flawless skin.  He was shirtless, and I was quite certain now that it was a loincloth draped loosely around his hips.  Not your average attire, but hey, I wasn’t the fashion police.  I was just glad he was alive.

Thinking he was in shock, I scanned his body for damage.  There was none.  How was that possible?  I gazed up at him bewildered.

A dark look flickered across his obsidian eyes.  The smile he gave me offered no comfort.

My body moved before my brain processed what was happening.  His hands slid along the glass until they reached the door frame.  His muscles bunched and his veins popping as if he was trying to force the door out of the way.

Without warning a metallic groan rocked my senses.  The window splintered into a web under the pressure.  No way was I waiting to see what else he was going to do.  I threw the gearshift into first and let off the clutch.  The car lurched forward then stalled.  The door groaned again before the glass shattered.  Adrenaline pumped faster through my veins, making it impossible to control my shaking hands.
I revved the engine, trying again.  Why wasn’t I moving?  The acrid smell of burning rubber assaulted my nose.  That was when I realized:  He wasn’t alone.

They rose from the side of the road like wraiths in the night, swift and lithe.  They circled my car, chanting.  I had to be dreaming.  Maybe I had fallen asleep at the wheel and crashed and this was my mind’s way of dealing with dying?  Maybe I was still in bed and hadn’t left Great Falls yet?  Maybe…

So what do you think?  That’s where my mind took me when I recalled that fateful vacation night.  What was your weirdest moment?  Have you considered writing about it?  You never know.  You just might end up writing a novel because of it.

I grew up daydreaming about fairytales, and my love for discovering new worlds has never died. I am not one of those writers who always knew I would write. I thought that was what other people did until one day a few years ago, I took a challenge from a friend and typed my first words. My journey has been wonderful, and I cannot imagine a day where I would ever give up writing now. My love for reading is what fueled my imagination in the first place and still does. When I am not writing or reading, I am enjoying family time with my husband and two children. We live in a quiet community under the Wellsville mountains in Utah, and I am so thankful for the rich life I have been blessed with.

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Book's Links:


Excerpt Five (Elemental Enmity Book I) by Christie Rich

The view of the sunset reminded me of my favorite bluff back home.  Nothing but sky was visible in the horizon.  I might as well have been standing on the edge of the world gazing at the gilded gates of heaven.
“I will never tire of seeing that,” a melodic voice erupted behind me.
If I had gotten a bit more air, I would have landed on Mars.  “Zach.”  I put a hand against my pounding heart.  “You scared me.”  I hadn’t even heard him come up to me.
“I noticed.”  He smirked.  “I was trying my best not to disturb you.  You looked so peaceful, but I am a selfish man.”  He chuckled, moving closer.
My attraction to him was hard enough to handle when he had all his clothes on.  My pulse raced with his approach for an entirely different reason.  He had the sort of flawless body that belonged on the airbrushed pages of a magazine.  His skin glowed golden in the blazing sunset that brought out rusty hues in his dark hair.  My fingers itched to trace every angle of his sculpted abdomen and chest.
“Leave it to you to make this thing look good,” he said, running a finger under the strap on my shoulder.  “By rights, it should be burned.  Are you going to tell me why you insisted on wearing it?”
He traced my collarbone.  “Really?”  In one fluid motion, I was in his arms, and he was carrying me deeper into the water.
I hoped he couldn’t feel the thud of my heart beating against his chest.  “What do you think you’re doing?” I asked more calmly than I felt.
“Changing your mind,” he said just as evenly.
I could see where he was going with this, and over the edge of a cliff wasn’t my idea of fun.  “Don’t.”
He grinned.  “Tell me.”
I stiffened in his arms.  “If you do this, I will leave—without you.”  His exaggerated exhale tickled my neck, sending goose-bumps down my body.
“Don’t you ever relax?”
I gritted my teeth, hating what I had become in the past few weeks.  If he had tried this back home, I would have protested, giggled, and screamed but loved every minute of his antics.
Things were different now.  I was on edge constantly.  “I’m so not okay with heights.  Let me down.”
The set of his jaw didn’t give me any comfort.  He walked up a ramp between the two converging rivers that made the waterfall.  On sure feet, he stepped to the edge.  I honestly didn’t know how he was still standing with the water blasting against his knees.  He leaned into my ear.  “Tell me.”
I clung to his neck like grime to a barn cat.  “I don’t want to.”
He looked over the edge and back at me.  The humor in his gaze died.  He sighed, stepping back a few paces.  My heart found its way back into my chest.  He carried me to a lounge chair, setting me down gently.
“You can’t possibly think that thing is pretty,” he commented after a while.
“Pretty isn’t everything,” I said.
He raised his brows, tucking his strong chin inward in mockery then looked at me sidelong.  “It helps.”  He smiled teasingly.
I shot him a dirty look before giving him my back.  He placed a timid hand on my shoulder.
“Come, now.  It can’t possibly be as bad as all that.”
Why couldn’t he just let it go?  I wasn’t all up in his business, why did he feel the need to be in mine.  “Drop it already.”
Zach sat beside me, coaxing my chin upward.  His voice was soft.  “Aren’t you having fun, lass?”
I wouldn’t look him in the eye.  If I did he would see every insecurity I had.  “I was before you decided to go all Tarzan on me.”
He thumped his chest, doing a great imitation of the call.  I tried to smile, but I didn’t think it helped.
“You weren’t like this the other day.”  He turned away as if in thought, glancing at me hastily.  “Don’t you like swimming?”
The other day I didn’t have four terrifying men after me.  I would have liked to give him an easy out, but I didn’t want to lie.  “I usually love it.”
Cassie had an indoor pool back home.  On the rare occasion I actually got to stay the night at her house, we would spend hours in the water.  She taught me how to float first.  I had progressively gotten better.  I was an adequate swimmer now.  The one thing I didn’t like was the high-dive.
He frowned.  “Is it me?”  His brows furrowed as though he was really worried.  “Have I done something to offend you?”
I closed my eyes, inhaling sharply.  “I’m sorry.  I’ve had fun today, really.  I just have other things on my mind right now.”
He grinned, tucking my hair behind my ear.  “I’m a great listener.”
I didn’t like being such a disappointment, but I couldn’t snap myself out of it.  I could just imagine how fast he’d be gone if I did tell him everything that was wrong with me at the moment.  “I’d rather not talk about it right now.”
He knelt in front of me and took my hands in his.  “You can’t expect me to not be curious.”
“It’s a free country,” I said.  “Be curious all you like.”  I was pushing him away when normally I would have been doing everything in my power to keep him interested in me.
The sun had made its final descent.  The haze of twilight settled all around us with the stars spotting the barely glowing sky.  In a few minutes, I would be able to relax a little.
Zach tugged my hand.  “Do you wish to go join the others?”  He sounded dejected.
Why was I acting like this?  I needed to snap out of it.  My mood wasn’t his fault.  “If you don’t mind, I’d rather stay here for a while.”
He nodded then moved to a lounge chair opposite me, wasting no time in getting comfortable.  “Why don’t you tell me of your home?”
The subject seemed safe enough.  “Have you ever been to eastern Utah?”
He made an odd sound, sort of a half concealed groan.  “It has been many years.”
He wasn’t old enough for it to have been that long ago.  I leaned back and put my arms behind my head preparing to give him details.
“I see,” he said in a sympathetic tone, his eyes soft with compassion.
I followed his gaze down to my exposed torso.  How could I have been so stupid?  The bottom half of my scar poked out from beneath the fringe.  I bolted up, pulling awkwardly at the fabric.
He shook his head.  “Everyone has imperfections, Rayla.”  In an instant he moved to the edge of my chair.  Calloused fingers caressed my shoulder before skimming down my arm.  “Some are just more visible than others.”
I turned away.  Then I got mad.  “Really, where’s yours?”
His face crinkled thoughtfully.  His eyes held haunted shadows.  “You’d be surprised.”
I gave him a look.  “Enlighten me.”
“There are certain things I want to change so badly about myself that it consumes my life.”  Unless he was a fantastic actor, he was being sincere.
He grimaced, only slightly, but it was enough to make me wonder.  “I would rather not get into that with you yet.”
I cocked my jaw, clicking my tongue.  “It’s okay for me, but not for you, huh?”
He leveled his gaze to mine seriously.  “If a scar is all you have to hide, you should be thankful.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
He shoved a hand through his hair.  “Only that there are worse things to bear than a scar.”
The truth burned me like a solar flare.  I should have been able to put on a pretty bikini without so much as a second thought, but I wasn’t there yet.  I hoped I would be some day.  I felt ridiculous being so shallow.  “You didn’t answer my question,” I said after a moment of hesitation.
The lines of his face turned hard.  “I know.”
“There you are,” Natalie yelled, cresting the hill in a sprint with Sam close behind her.  “Help me, Rayla!”  She crouched down between my chair and the stacked rock wall.
“They can’t save you,” Sam said coldly, standing by my feet.  “You will pay.”
I turned back, whispering, “What did you do?”
She smiled proudly.  “Put ice in his trunks.”
Zach narrowed his eyes at Natalie.  His jaw tightened.  “You deserve anything you get.”  He grabbed my hand, pulling me to my feet.
Sam swept the chair sideways.  Natalie squealed, trying to out-maneuver him.  She didn’t make it.
Attempting to wrench away from him, she said desperately, “You can put ice in my suit.  Rayla, do you have a drink?”
Sam smiled wickedly.  He looked over at the edge of the falls.  Did all male minds work the same?  “I have something better in mind.”
She put her hands on his cheeks.  “Please, Sam.  I’m sorry.  I won’t do anything like that again.”
He grabbed her wrists, pushing her into the river.  She kicked at him and squealed the entire way.
“Not after this,” he said, grinning.  Without another word, he pinned her arms to her sides in a bear hug.  She smiled at him.  I couldn’t see his expression, but her eyes flew wide just before he shouted, “Geronimo.”
Her “No” was squelched when they hit the water.  Zach grinned down at me.  My smile shriveled.
“Don’t even think about it,” I said when he came closer.  Natalie’s laugh rang clear from below.
“Not that I don’t find the idea tempting once more, but I think I will pursue your affections another way.”

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