Thursday, September 26, 2013

Blog tour Giveaway and Guest Post: Rising by Holly Kelly

Today's distractions involve a New Adult paranormal romance by Holly Kelly.  Scroll down to find out about Rising and its author, read  Holly's guest post and an excerpt of Rising and, of course, take part int he giveaway!
So, here we go:



Title: Rising
Author:  Holly Kelly
Published:  September 6th, 2013
Publisher:  Clean Teen Publishing
Word Count:  approx. 76,000
Genre: New Adult Paranormal Romance
Recommended Age:  16+
Synopsis: In a war between the humans and the inhabitants of the sea—humans will lose. Xanthus Dimitriou—the most lethal Dagonian to rise from the ocean—is on a mission to save mankind from annihilation. But first there’s one small thing he needs to do… kill a beautiful young woman in a wheelchair.
Killing her doesn’t start out as part of his plan. He entrenches himself deep in the human world. Aligning himself with his enemies, he prepares to send them to Triton to face their punishment. Then Sara Taylor rolls onto the scene. Xanthus knows at once she’s a
criminal. And her crime? Being born. She’s a human/Dagonian half-breed, an abomination. Killing her should be an easy job. All he has to do is break into her apartment, slit her throat, and feed her body to the sharks. Simple, right? Wrong. If only she weren’t so beautiful, so innocent, so sweet…
Saving the world may have to wait. It appears Xanthus has a woman to save. But protecting her may cost him his own life.



About the Author:
Holly Kelly is a mom who writes books in her spare time: translation--She hides in the bathroom with her laptop and locks the door while the kids destroy the house and smear peanut butter on the walls.

Holly was born in Utah but lived in Salina, Kansas until she was 13 and in Garland, Texas until she was 18. She's now back in Utah--"happy valley". Holly is married to her wonderful husband, James, and the two of them are currently raising 6 rambunctious children. Her interests are reading, writing (or course), martial arts, visual arts, and spending time with family.

Holly Kelly's first published book is: Rising. Rising was published by Clean Teen Publishing on September 6, 2013.
 Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads | Website

Guest Post  by Holly Kelly
Passionate about writing
As an author, I’m passionate about becoming a better writer. My writing journey began six years ago, when I decided to write my first novel. I’d written some before that, but it was just for fun and I was not serious at all about it. Since I began this journey, it has been hard, it’s been rocky, and I’ve written some pretty atrocious stuff. I’ve gotten better over the last few years, and I’ve learned some things about writing along the way.
1.        Writing is FUN! I’d always enjoyed reading, and have had an imagination that ran wild. Writing made it possible for me to bring that imagination to life.  

2.       Writing is hard. There’s much more to writing a good book than coming up with a great story line. You have to think about plot, conflict, character development, passive/active voice, tense, grammar, point of view, and a lot of other technical junk that can suck the creativity out of a person. With all this nitpicky stuff, it’s easy to forget that writing is fun.

3.       Writing a novel from beginning to end is not the end. Many writers are great with writing their story. They get caught up in the action and fly through the writing process quickly. When they type the words “The End”, they breathe a sigh of relief. They’d done it. They’d written a book. The problem is, only half the work is done—even less than half if they are inexperienced. The next step is revision and editing.  Ernest Hemmingway was known to say, “The first draft of anything is sh*t.”  It’s through the revision and editing process that the beauty of a novel comes through. Below is just one example of a paragraph I wrote before and after revisions of my book, Rising.

Before Revision: “Xanthus stepped into Sara’s room. Her chest rising gently with every breath; she was completely unaware of danger around her.”
After Revision: “Xanthus stepped into her bedroom. Light from the kitchen spilled onto her bed, draping across her sleeping form. Her chest rose with every breath. She slept, unaware of the predator stalking her. Xanthus’s heart pounded and sweat broke out across his forehead as he looked down on her angelic face.”
It’s easy to see here which paragraph gives you a better visualization to what is going on. The first one I wrote while caught up in the action of the story. The second came after I went back and dissected the paragraph, figuring out the best words to use to make the scene come to life. And this is something that must be done, line by line, paragraph by paragraph. Until you’re satisfied that it’s as beautiful and polished as you can possibly make it.
Writing has been a journey and passion for me. I love every aspect of it—writing the story, revising it, and most of all, bringing the images in my imagination to life. And I can’t think of anything better than writing novel after novel until I take my final breath.


Excerpt from Rising by Holly Kelly:

He knew what he had to do, what he’d done countless times before. As a trained soldier, he had a sacred duty to protect his people, guard their secret, and uphold the law. This female’s presence here was not only a criminal act, but it also presented an imminent threat. And because of that, his course was clear.
He had to kill her.
His plan lay clearly before him. Blanketed in the shadows, he’d enter her apartment window. Moving silently, he’d strike fast. Before she could cry out for help, he’d have her throat slit wide open. With her blood flowing swiftly, she’d be dead in mere seconds. The fact that she bathed at this time added to the ease of the execution. Clean up would be simple. Before the night ended, it would be as if she’d never existed. The Dagonian threat of exposure would be wiped clean from the human world.
Xanthus stood, his feet rooted in place under her window. Her sweet scent surrounded him as he listened to her pitiful sobs. Then, in that moment, he did the most shameful thing he’d ever done in his life.
He hesitated.
No, he didn’t merely hesitate. He halted. Fingering his blade in his holster, he willed his feet to move, but they seemed unwilling to obey. Then his mind latched onto a thought. It was no crime to wait for a more opportune time or a more secluded place to strike. He didn’t need to act rashly. True, finding her here in the human world shocked him, but he needed to be clear-headed and sure when he killed her.
He made his way back to his vehicle and climbed behind the wheel. He leaned his head back against the seat, closed his eyes, and attempted to clear his head.
He’d be back and she would die. She deserved to die. She may have the voice of an angel, but that was a lie. She was a traitor, a threat to their people. No other explanation made sense.
He felt someone near just before a fist rapped on the glass. A big, filthy man with wild hair motioned for him to roll down his window.
As soon as the glass lowered, the barrel of a high-caliber pistol poked inside. “Give me all your money and I won’t hurt you,” the man growled.
“Put away that gun and I won’t hurt you,” Xanthus said, his voice low and menacing.
The man didn’t seem too impressed. “Yeah man, right. You might notice I’m the one with the...” Before he got the words out, Xanthus had the gun out of the man’s hand and pointed back at his face with his windpipe clenched in his fist.
“Hey man, I was just joking,” the human choked out.
“Just walk away. And don’t come back. If I see your face anywhere near here again, I’ll kill you. Do you understand me?”
The man’s eyes widened in fear. “Yeah, yeah, I hear you,” he said, just before Xanthus released him and he escaped into the darkness.
Xanthus looked toward the little female’s apartment building across the street. Could she have found a more dangerous place to live? He placed the gun in the glove compartment. He shouldn’t have let the gunman live.
This Dagonian female probably felt at home with these bottom-feeders.
Probably? Aw Hades. He cursed himself and the doubt in his mind. He doubly cursed that he couldn’t seem to stop himself from caring about her welfare. He’d be killing her himself, after all. The traitor had to die, regardless of his feelings and no matter how appealing she was. Of course if she died by a human’s hands then he wouldn’t...
No.
He shook his head at his own idiotic thoughts. If a human killed her, then her body would be taken to the morgue, for the humans to see. He couldn’t let that happen. He had to be the one to kill her and carefully dispose of her body. And he would, soon.
Just not tonight.


 Clean Teen Publishing Links:



Giveaway Details:
There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:
If US:

GRAND PRIZE: Print copy of Rising, bookmark, surprise Clean Teen Publishing swag gift, and reader’s choice of two digital Clean Teen Publishing books.

If INT:

GRAND PRIZE: $10 Electronic Amazon Gift Card, Rising bookmark, surprise Clean Teen Publishing swag gift, and reader’s choice of two digital Clean Teen Publishing books.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Keep getting distracted by reading,

Urania

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Book tour, giveaway and review: The Woodlands by Lauren Nicolle Taylor

Good morning book-lovers!
A dystopian story is about to distract you today. Read about the story, its author, take a taste of the Woodlands world in an excerpt and also...take part in the giveaway! Somewhere in between you will be able to read my review. Enjoy!

Title:  The Woodlands
Author: Lauren Nicolle Taylor
Published: August 30th, 2013 by Clean Teen Publishing
Word Count:  approx. 92,000
Genre:  YA Mature Dystopian Romance
Content Warning:  Non-graphic Violence
Recommend Age:  14+
Synopsis: Rosa never thought she’d make it to sixteen...

When being unique puts you in danger and speaking your mind can be punishable by death,  you might find yourself fighting to survive. Sixteen-year-old Rosa lives in one of the eight enclosed cities of The Woodlands. Where the lone survivors of a devastating race war have settled in the Russian wilderness because it’s the only scrap of land left habitable on the planet. In these circular cities, everyone must abide by the law or face harsh punishment. Rosa's inability to conform and obey the rules brands her a leper and no one wants to be within two feet of her, until she meets Joseph. He's blonde, fair-skinned, green-eyed, and the laid-back complete opposite of Rosa. She's never met anyone quite like him, and she knows that spells danger.

But differences weren't always a bad thing. People used to think being unique was one of the most treasured of traits to have. Now, the Superiors, who ruthlessly control the concrete cities with an iron fist, are obsessed with creating a 'raceless' race. They are convinced this is the only way to avoid another war. Any anomalies must be destroyed.

The Superiors are unstoppable and can do anything they want. After all, they are considered superheroes by the general public. But not everyone sees them this way. When they continue to abuse their power by collecting young girls for use in their secret, high-tech breeding program, they have no idea that one of those girls has somehow managed to make friends even she didn't know she had. And one man will stop at nothing to save her.

About the Author:
Lauren Nicolle Taylor is a 33-year-old mother living in the tiny, lush town of Bridgewater on the other side of the world in Australia. She married her high school sweetheart and has three very boisterous and individual children. She earned a Bachelors degree in Health Sciences with Honours in Obstetrics and Gynecology and majored in Psychology while minoring in Contemporary Australian Writing.

After a disastrous attempt to build her dream house that left her family homeless, She found herself inexplicably drawn to the computer. She started writing, not really knowing where it may lead but ended up, eight weeks later, with the rough draft of The Woodlands.

In 2013, Lauren Nicolle Taylor accepted a publishing contract with Clean Teen Publishing. Her first published novel, The Woodlands, was released on August 30, 2013. Currently, Lauren has finished her manuscript for the second book in the series titled: The Wall, as well as partially completed the third book in the series which at this time is unnamed.


Excerpt from The Woodlands by Lauren Nicolle Taylor # 1:

LEAVING PAU

The helicopters were stationed at the rim of Ring One, just inside the low, sandy-colored wall that surrounded the center podium. They were waiting, crouching like black angels ready to lift us from this place, this hell, into an unknown world. A Guardian in black uniform with gold trim walked to the front of the choppers and signaled for us to come forward. Another one threw the bags in the cargo hold as he read from his list. Three girls and eight boys. Joseph’s name was not on the list. I felt a flood of relief that was washed away by panic. I was barely holding myself together as it was, seeing him was liable to make me fall to pieces. But he was supposed to be here.
Paulo’s hand was on my back, pushing me towards the helicopter like I was an uncooperative apple on the conveyor belt. I was trying so hard to muster up some courage. Today I was leaving the only home I had ever known. I would never see my mother again. I felt the anxiety rising, the crushing pain of the separation I was about to suffer. Suddenly the grey-washed town didn’t look so horrible. It was home after all, I guess. I told myself it was fear that was making me feel this way. It didn’t help.
My mother, who had been quietly following us around like a dazed puppy, pulled me to her in a tight embrace. She whispered, “Sorry,” in my ear before stepping back, fists clenched, showing the appropriate restraint. Some other mothers were crying and holding their children as the Guardian wrenched them away and led them onto the aircraft.
My mother’s face was my own, the way she moved mirrored my own movements and mannerisms, but that’s where the similarities ended. Although raised by this woman, I was nothing like her. For the first time, I saw things from her perspective. Getting into trouble all the time, never showing Paulo anything other than contempt. I must have been such a frustration to her.
They called my name. Paulo put his hands firmly on my shoulders, holding me in my place. His intense stare was impossible to look away from. “Don’t shame your family,” he spat at me. And with that, he made it easy to leave. I could feel the blades starting to move, my hair whipping around my face. I stripped away the fear and anxiety, leaving a girl that was fierce, empowered by his hatred.
“Don’t worry, Paulo, I’ll stir it up, make a little noise!” I shouted through the wind. The Guardian that let me sign up was watching me, probably regretting his decision. My mother was standing rigidly, her handmade skirt billowing as the air churned around her, her hand outstretched, pleading. I could see it in her eyes—please Rosa, don’t cause more trouble. She couldn’t stop me, no one ever could. Paulo was already walking away, his back to me. Behind my mother stood a man, one blue eye, one brown, smiling. He lifted his hand to wave. I raised my hand, confused. The chopper lurched awkwardly and I was knocked back into the cargo hold.
“Sit down!” the Guardian snapped at me. I quickly found a spot and strapped myself in. The others were staring at me, eyes wide. The Guardian tapped the pilot on the shoulder. “Wait, there’s one more.”
He bounded in, bag in hand, and casually threw it on the pile and scanned the seats. There was plenty of room on the other side but he squeezed his bulky form between me and the boy I was sitting next to.
Suddenly we were in the air. When the Guardian wasn’t looking, Joseph slipped his hand over mine. Warmth calmed the agitation I felt, like pouring gold over lead, glowing. We stayed that way the entire ride. Eyes forward. Impossibly trying to anticipate what may lie ahead.



Giveaway Details:
There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:
If US:

GRAND PRIZE: Print copy of The Woodlands, bookmark, surprise Clean Teen Publishing swag gift, and reader’s choice of two digital Clean Teen Publishing books.

If INT:

GRAND PRIZE: $10 Electronic Amazon Gift Card, The Woodlands bookmark, surprise Clean Teen Publishing swag gift, and reader’s choice of two digital Clean Teen Publishing books.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book review


The Woodlands is dystopian story the fans of this genre will absolutely enjoy.
The author has successfully depicted what could be characterized as the futuristic Dark Ages – common context within most dystopian stories – enriched with generous doses of YA romance and then makes her story even more original by adding a little sci-fi: the use of human beings as guinea pigs in the process of medical research.

The heroine, Rosa, was a character I honestly found difficult to like. She wants to rebel against the manipulative and oppressive system the Woodlands is run by and, although this may sound promising, I found myself asking “why?” when I found her  challenge the system representatives over and over as that was just about all her resistance. Eventually I think she was broken and failed to become the kick-ass heroine I wanted her to be.

The story unravels within a variety of context and this makes it even more interesting. So do the many complicated characters that appear on the way. Complicated characters in a complicated world and with justified cause. The world of Woodlands is a nightmare. Love is the only remedy. The story is full of positive messages to the reader and the heroes’ morals and values stand as the only shield against the evils of such a nightmarish regime. Love finds a way to survive.  
The plot reaches the climax and that is when it will make you anxious to turn the pages but the author handles it in such a way that you will be looking forward to the sequel. I know I am!


My rating: 4,5/5

Saturday, September 21, 2013

The Bridge of Deaths "Peace In Time" Book Blitz & Hop Giveaway by M.C.V. Egan



PEACE POST SEPTEMBER 21st 2013 by M.C.V. Egan

Today we celebrate the UN’s INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PEACE, the resolution to have loud voices for PEACE and a special day was passed in 1981; the first celebration was in 1982.
If we can at least try as a society to visualize the possibility of PEACE perhaps someday we will be able to accomplish this. It is a great tool to teach said desire tour children, so that they perhaps find a way to instill PEACE as a way of life*.
On a personal note, I spent my formative years in the 1970swatching the Vietnam War on TV. Literally eating dinner as I watched soldiers from both sides, kill and die.
Inasmuch as there were Peace movements the conservative society that surrounded me represented an acceptance of war. It was simply an accepted principle. Historically it has been an accepted necessity, countries are born through bloody revolutions and re-formed through just as bloody civil wars. We watch it every day.
There have however been great examples of NON violent changes with great results. As per Wikipedia:
A nonviolent revolution is a revolution using mostly campaigns of civil resistance, including various forms of nonviolent protest, to bring about the departure of governments seen as entrenched and authoritarian. While many campaigns of civil resistance are aimed at much more limited goals than revolution, generally a nonviolent revolution is characterized by simultaneous advocacy of democracy, human rights and national independence in the country concerned. In some cases a campaign of civil resistance with a revolutionary purpose may be able to bring about the defeat of a dictatorial regime only if it obtains a degree of support from the armed forces, or at least their benevolent neutrality.**
My favorite principles and acts of a peaceful resolution are those from Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi:
A nonviolent revolution is not a program of seizure of power. It is a program of transformation of relationships ending in a peaceful transfer of power.
 Mohandas Gandhi, 1942***

I hope you enjoy the Peace Hop, ponder on Peace and spread the possibility.
About The Author:picture087
M.C.V. Egan lives in South Florida. she is fluent in four languages; English, Spanish, French and Swedish. From a young age became determined to solve the 'mystery' of her grandfather's death, she has researched this story for almost two decades. the story has taken her to Denmark, England and unconventional world of psychics.


Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Peace In Time Book Blitz
Genre: Historical Paranormal
Publisher: AuthorHouse Publishing
Release Date: June 14, 2011
Amazon

On August 15th, 1939 an English passenger plane from British Airways Ltd. Crashed in Danish waters between the towns of Nykobing/Falster and Vordingborg. There were five casualties reported and one survivor. Just two weeks before Hitler invaded Poland with the world at the brink of war the manner in which this incident was investigated left much open to doubt. The jurisdiction battle between the two towns and the newly formed Danish secret police, created an atmosphere of intrigue and distrust.

In the winter of 2009-2010 a young executive, Bill is promoted and transferred to London for a major International firm. He has struggled for the better part of his life with nightmares and phobias, which only seem to worsen in London. As he seeks the help of a therapist he accepts that his issues may well be related to a 'past-life trauma'.

Through love, curiosity, archives and the information superhighway of the 21st century Bill travels through knowledge and time to uncover the story of the 1939 plane crash.

The Bridge of Deaths is a love story and a mystery. Fictional characters travel through the world of past life regressions and information acquired from psychics as well as archives and historical sources to solve "One of those mysteries that never get solved" is based on true events and real people, it is the culmination of 18 years of sifting through sources in Denmark, England and the United States, it finds a way to help the reader feel that he /she is also sifting through data and forming their own conclusions.

The journey takes the reader to well known and little known events leading up to the Second World War, both in Europe and America. The journey also takes the reader to the possibility of finding oneself in this lifetime by exploring past lives.







Thursday, September 12, 2013

Cover reveal: Falling for Grace, Paranormal romance by Anne Conley

If this doesn't distract you, what will?
I'm so looking forward for Anne Conley's  forthcoming paranormal romance. Read along and I'm sure you will understand why!
And just to have a taste ...

Buy links for Book one in the Four Winds Series, Falling for Heaven, which is .99

Barnes and Noble:  http://bit.ly/18kkRnQ

Smashwords: http://bit.ly/1aln3Mv

And now... here's the awesome cover!

Falling for Grace, book two in the Four Winds series by Anne Conley

Release date:  October 15, 2013

Genre:  Paranormal Romance

Blurb:

Rafael is one of God’s Four Winds, the Archangel of Healing.  He has answered the countless prayers for healing of loved ones, wondering what it was about the emotion that made humans willing to sacrifice so much.

Grace is a lifeguard who has been on Rafe’s radar since she lost a little boy three years ago.  What she doesn’t realize is the green haze that comes over her during a rescue is actually a diving presence who’s about to give up his celestial body to become a very real entity in her life.

While Grace is trying to overcome her own demon, Rafe is discovering his own sexuality, but there’s a darker presence making himself known.  The Deceiver wants what Rafe is getting, and he’ll do whatever it takes to have her.

Contact the author:

Website:  www.anneconley.com
Twitter:  @anneconley10


About the author: 

Anne Conley lives in a small town in East Texas with her husband, two kids, and thirty goats.  She writes all day, reads all night, and is prides herself on not being in the running for Mommy of the Year, as her kids are lucky to make it to school with socks and underwear on.  She brazenly stole her pseudonym from her great-grandmother, a true pioneer woman who raised seven kids alone:  churning butter, plucking chickens, knitting clothes, and putting coal oil on every visible wound.

Excerpt from Falling for Grace:

                Rafe was in the bathroom, brushing his teeth the next morning, reflecting on his corporeal body.
                Teeth brushing.  That wasn't a normal thing for him.  Neither was showering.  Or shaving. 
                Usually, his work was done on a different realm.  He traveled in the cosmic soup, visiting people in their dreams, subconsciously, or their conscious minds.  He became a temporary part of their psyche.  He dropped in on surgeons during surgery, to help guide shaky, sleep-deprived hands.  Rafe had passed out ideas to the stumped healers, in a sudden flash of brilliance.  He visited dreams.  He was responsible for many 'Eureka!' moments. 
                Rarely, had he come to earth in a human body.  He'd been visiting Grace during saves for the past three years in her mind, allowing her to do her job the way she had been trained to do, only providing moral support.  He hadn't had to step in with her, yet.
                Head-hopping was one of his many talents.  He had the ability to jump inside of another person's head and sense what they were thinking.  He didn't get clear visions, only vague perceptions.  As tempting as it was to be inside her mind all the time, he hadn't done it to Grace.
                Much.
                He enjoyed having a body.  It felt good.  He stood in front of the mirror, a towel wrapped around his waist, sensing his body.  He could feel the muscles in his arm and shoulder flex as he brushed, enjoyed the feel of the bristles against his teeth and tongue.  He flexed his toes against the bathmat, scrunching them into the thick pile, feeling his calves bunch.  He rubbed the sleep out of his eyes, delighted at the various ways that the human body secreted by-products.  Marvelous.
                The delight in feeling himself was interrupted by Grace opening the bathroom door, surprising him.  He turned to her, and gaped, undone by what he saw.
                She was standing there, bleary-eyed, wearing nothing but a knit camisole and a pair of the tiniest bikini panties he'd ever seen on a woman in the flesh.  He was frozen, eyes wide, toothbrush in his mouth, toothpaste foaming and dripping, looking like a rabid dog.  He was aware of his groin muscles tightening, his testicles shrinking abruptly.
                Grace was frozen too.  He saw her jaw drop, framing her wide luscious mouth in a perfect O.  Her blue eyes widened, and an attractive blush crawled up her chest to her cheeks.  Her wide eyes traveled from his face down his torso, to the towel wrapped around his waist before dropping to her feet, where they began the climb up her own body.
                She snapped her mouth shut, and she began to sputter as realization dawned.
                "I-I'm so sorry.  I should have knocked."  Her hands went to cover herself.  "I'm not used to a man living here."  Turning, she tossed over her shoulder as she darted out of the bathroom, "I'll just use the other one!"
                Chuckling to himself, Rafe looked down, noticing his erection, making a tent out of his towel.  The tightness in his groin should have been a give away, but he'd been so taken aback by her appearance in the doorway that he hadn't taken in the implications of his blood flow altering its course from his testicles to other places. 
                Spitting out the toothpaste and rinsing his mouth, Rafe whistled as he went into his room to dress for the day.  It would be exciting, he was sure.

 Keep being distracted by reading, 
Urania

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Book blast and Review and Giveaway: Dysus Dreamer by J. A. Garland

Another distraction for us paranormal booklovers by Juniper Grove book solutions!

Title:  Dysus Dreamer
Author:  J.A. Garland
Published:  July 1st, 2013
Publisher: Burst Books
Word Count:  70,000
Genre:  Urban Fantasy
Content Warning:  Contains violence and minor adult language.
Recommended Age:  18+
Synopsis: Demon warrior, Slade Aesus, is determined to destroy the werewolves controlling his cousin. But a beautiful elf, consumed by her own vengeance, finds the wolves first. Botching her assassination attempt, Annwyn has the most powerful Packs in the world biting at her heels.  Both fiercely independent, can the two join forces long enough to fulfill their missions and stay alive?


About the Author:
Writing under the pen name, J.A. Garland, Jennifer is a full time firefighter in the state of California, an addicted trail runner, a connoisseur of all things cheese puff, and a urban fantasy author. When she isn't slogging through the obstacles at a mud run, you can find her hunched over her computer unleashing demons, vampires, and werewolves upon the world.



Excerpt from Dysus Dreamer by J.A. Garland:

A solid assassination operation takes one part opportunity, two parts discipline, and three parts disposition. Having two out of three this chilly Seattle evening, Slade considered himself in abundance of good fortune.
Parked in front of a solitary office building, in the zone clearly marked “No Parking,” Slade cleared his mind of distractions consisting of the little here and there that could creep in and throw him off, just a hair, but enough to jeopardize his mission. Satisfied, he slid out of the rental car and re-tucked a stylish black golf shirt monogrammed with “Constantine Vineyards” into a pair of crisp, steel gray slacks. In this particular scenario, image was crucial.
Tonight, the element discipline presented itself by his waiting for the precise moment to strike. He made a living analyzing people and their habits, so he knew his targets relaxed around the holidays and were less likely to see the danger lurking behind his smiling façade. The current festivity du jour was Christmas, and coupled with his gift, destined Slade a popular man. I'm counting on it.
He moved around to the trunk, where he heaved free a slatted, wooden case. It smelled of musky oak. The peaceful scent hinted at candlelit dinners shared with a long time lover. His jaw clenched. Not in my past and not in my future.
Slade lugged his precious cargo toward the sprawling metal office building. Immense, the structure stabbed farther into the heavens than any other in the area, yet fell short. Just like my target. Outwardly, Joe Larsen appeared a dedicated family man, a real pillar of the community whose flourishing internet and telecommunications business, ProCom, employed hundreds. In reality, the werewolf belonged to the Dirty Dozen, a group of the twelve most ruthless wolf Packs roaming the earth.
How ironic. I was once your target. A year ago, the Dozen kidnapped his cousin Amber, a half-demon, half-human. Able to keep a shifter from shifting, Amber's ability proved irresistible, since more times than not, the Dozen's meetings devolved into an unproductive, fur-flying brawl. We saved Amber, but left behind some unfinished business. Starting with Larsen, the wolves would learn a lesson...a demon’s memory rivals the most scorned woman, and paybacks were indeed a bitch.



 Book Review
As a Juniper Grove Books host, I was asked to submit an honest review of Dysus Dreamer and was sent a copy of J. A. Garland’s story in mobi format. For those of you who have read the About me page of this blog, you know I have decided not to submit a review for a book I do not like; I prefer to contact the author and let them know how I feel about their story and why, maybe making one or two suggestions and always stating that the fact that I’m not the right person to review their story does not really mean anything.  
Thankfully, this was not a problem with Dysus Dreamer. Even from the first page, I realized I was going to enjoy reading it.
But let me explain this:

What I liked about the book:
-Definitely the beginning. You know me; the first pages of the book really matter! And with J. A. Garland’s story, you can’t put the book away once you start reading it.
-The way she blended the two different worlds in her story: the plot unravels in two different levels that eventually meet and... sorry! I can’t reveal more about this if I am to submit a spoiler-free review.
-The action scenes. I have only one word to describe them: breathtaking! It was like I was watching them on screen!
-The unpredictable turn of events in the end and in the way some of the characters evolved... I would love to write more about it but you’re going to have to read the story.
-Last but not least: Slade...

What I would change:
-This one has nothing to do with the book. It’s about me: next time I decide to submit a review I should keep in mind never to skip reading book one of the series. It is not fair to the story. Dysus Dreamer can be a standalone but I really had to read certain pages twice and really carefully to keep up with the events and the background of the plot.
-The paragraphs that reveal the characters’ inner thoughts to the reader could also include Anwyn, one of the main characters whose role is crucial throughout the story. As a reader, I really wondered how she felt about Slade and if she felt the same for him.
- The villains’ inner thoughts confused me at some points: they sounded too good, their actions too justified. Was it the writer’s intention to show that sometimes there is a rationale behind evil? That no one is really evil but simply has no option? I wonder... (If this is so, please consider this paragraph as the last one of the What I liked part. Maybe the writer can enlighten us about it!)


My rating: 4/5 hearts!






Giveaway Details:
There is an international tour wide giveaway. Up for grabs is a $50 Amazon Gift Card!


Keep being distracted by reading,
Urania


Friday, September 6, 2013

Book Blitz and Giveaway: Rising, by Holly Kelly

Today I want you to get distracted with a New Adult Paranormal Romance! Enjoy!


Title:  Rising  
Author:  Holly Kelly
Published:  September 6th, 2013
Publisher:  Clean Teen Publishing
Word Count:  approx. 76,000
Genre:   New Adult Paranormal Romance
Recommended Age:  16+
Synopsis: In a war between the humans and the inhabitants of the sea—humans will  lose. Xanthus Dimitriou—the most lethal Dagonian to rise from the ocean—is on a mission to save mankind from annihilation. But first there’s one small thing he needs to do… kill a beautiful young woman in a wheelchair.
Killing her doesn’t start out as part of his plan. He entrenches himself deep in the human world. Aligning himself with his enemies, he prepares to send them to Triton to face their punishment. Then Sara Taylor rolls onto the scene. Xanthus knows at once she’s a criminal. And her crime? Being born. She’s a human/Dagonian half-breed, an abomination. Killing her should be an easy job. All he has to do is break into her apartment, slit her throat, and feed her body to the sharks. Simple, right? Wrong. If only she weren’t so beautiful, so innocent, so sweet…
Saving the world may have to wait. It appears Xanthus has a woman to save. But protecting her may cost him his own life.
 
About the Author:
Holly Kelly is a mom who writes books in her spare time: translation-She hides in the bathroom with her laptop and locks the door while the kids destroy the house and smear peanut butter on the walls.

Holly was born in Utah but lived in Salina, Kansas until she was 13 and in Garland, Texas until she was 18. She's now back in Utah--"happy valley". Holly is married to her wonderful husband, James, and the two of them are currently raising 6 rambunctious children. Her interests are reading, writing (or course), martial arts, visual arts, and spending time with family.

Holly Kelly's first published book is: Rising. Rising was published by Clean Teen Publishing on September 6, 2013.

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Excerpt from Rising by Holly Kelly:

He knew what he had to do, what he’d done countless times before. As a trained soldier, he had a sacred duty to protect his people, guard their secret, and uphold the law. This female’s presence here was not only a criminal act, but it also presented an imminent threat. And because of that, his course was clear.
He had to kill her.
His plan lay clearly before him. Blanketed in the shadows, he’d enter her apartment window. Moving silently, he’d strike fast. Before she could cry out for help, he’d have her throat slit wide open. With her blood flowing swiftly, she’d be dead in mere seconds. The fact that she bathed at this time added to the ease of the execution. Clean up would be simple. Before the night ended, it would be as if she’d never existed. The Dagonian threat of exposure would be wiped clean from the human world.
Xanthus stood, his feet rooted in place under her window. Her sweet scent surrounded him as he listened to her pitiful sobs. Then, in that moment, he did the most shameful thing he’d ever done in his life.
He hesitated.
No, he didn’t merely hesitate. He halted. Fingering his blade in his holster, he willed his feet to move, but they seemed unwilling to obey. Then his mind latched onto a thought. It was no crime to wait for a more opportune time or a more secluded place to strike. He didn’t need to act rashly. True, finding her here in the human world shocked him, but he needed to be clear-headed and sure when he killed her.
He made his way back to his vehicle and climbed behind the wheel. He leaned his head back against the seat, closed his eyes, and attempted to clear his head.
He’d be back and she would die. She deserved to die. She may have the voice of an angel, but that was a lie. She was a traitor, a threat to their people. No other explanation made sense.
He felt someone near just before a fist rapped on the glass. A big, filthy man with wild hair motioned for him to roll down his window.
As soon as the glass lowered, the barrel of a high-caliber pistol poked inside. “Give me all your money and I won’t hurt you,” the man growled.
“Put away that gun and I won’t hurt you,” Xanthus said, his voice low and menacing.
The man didn’t seem too impressed. “Yeah man, right. You might notice I’m the one with the...” Before he got the words out, Xanthus had the gun out of the man’s hand and pointed back at his face with his windpipe clenched in his fist.
“Hey man, I was just joking,” the human choked out.
“Just walk away. And don’t come back. If I see your face anywhere near here again, I’ll kill you. Do you understand me?”
The man’s eyes widened in fear. “Yeah, yeah, I hear you,” he said, just before Xanthus released him and he escaped into the darkness.
Xanthus looked toward the little female’s apartment building across the street. Could she have found a more dangerous place to live? He placed the gun in the glove compartment. He shouldn’t have let the gunman live.
This Dagonian female probably felt at home with these bottom-feeders.
Probably? Aw Hades. He cursed himself and the doubt in his mind. He doubly cursed that he couldn’t seem to stop himself from caring about her welfare. He’d be killing her himself, after all. The traitor had to die, regardless of his feelings and no matter how appealing she was. Of course if she died by a human’s hands then he wouldn’t...
No.
He shook his head at his own idiotic thoughts. If a human killed her, then her body would be taken to the morgue, for the humans to see. He couldn’t let that happen. He had to be the one to kill her and carefully dispose of her body. And he would, soon.
Just not tonight.




Clean Teen Publishing Links:

Giveaway Details:
There is an international tour wide giveaway.
GRAND PRIZE: A digital copy of Rising, a Rising bookmark, a surprise Clean Teen Publishing swag gift and a Clean Teen Publishing digital book of the readers choosing

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Keep being distracted by reading,
Urania