Tuesday, June 28, 2016

The Deep End by Katy Newton Naas - Excerpt

The Deep End
by Katy Newton Naas

Genre: YA Paranormal/Ghosts
Release Date: October 26th 2015
Clean Reads

Summary from Goodreads:

When shy sophomore Kaci Lynn Richards moves to a small town, she is nervous about the change. That is, until she befriends the outgoing Jo and meets popular senior James Mitchell. Kaci quickly learns to love her new life…until she begins to see the ghost of a teen girl in her new home. The mystery girl haunts her, giving her visions that leave clues as to who she was and how she met her violent fate. But the more she learns about the girl, the more she finds that life in this sleepy town may not be what it seems.

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            As soon as I close the cabinet door, my whole body is chilled. I shiver, turning toward the microwave to find myself face-to-face with her. Her dark eyes gaze into mine, her cold breath so close I can feel it on my cheeks. My heart racing, I jump back, colliding with the counter behind me.
            What happens next is a blur. I feel a sharp pain in the back of my head and I am on the floor. She stands over me, her tangled hair hanging down, covering parts of her face while she stares down at me, her eyes wide and intense. I am unable to look away from her, unable to scream or move or even breathe.
            Suddenly, she is gone and the room spins. I can finally blink, and I try to steady myself as the room finally settles. I am still on the floor, still in my kitchen, except it looks…different. Mom’s mixer that sits on the counter is gone. Instead, a wine rack sits in its place, and I count nine glass bottles resting inside of it. The walls are a dark brown color, and the lights seem dimmer. “Aven?” I call out weakly, but the voice I hear is not my own. I try to use my hands to push myself up off the floor, but I can’t; they are behind my back, stuck on something.
            I twist my neck around, trying to look at them so that I can figure out how to get them loose. That’s when I feel the shooting pain go up through my arms, and I realize it’s because my wrists are bound together with rope and it’s cutting off the circulation from my hands to the rest of my body. Desperately I try to pull them apart, but the fibers of the rope dig deeper into my wrists and the pain is unbearable, so I let them go limp behind me, giving up that fight.
            Calm down, I order myself. Breathe. Don’t panic. I ignore the throbbing pain in my arms as I squirm, inch by inch until I am in a sitting position. Looking down, I see that the red long-sleeve shirt and jeans I had on have been replaced by a white nightgown. The blood stains around the collar and down my sides make my heart race faster – even more so when I realize that they’re mine.
            “Help!” I cry out, again surprised when the voice I hear is a little deeper than mine. “Somebody please help me!”
            “You’re wasting your breath,” a deep, masculine voice says from somewhere behind me. There is a hint of laughter in his words when he says, “There’s no one here but you and me.”
            The voice is vaguely familiar, but I don’t have time to analyze it as a cold, pressing fear weighs down my body. It is then that I realize that he’s right; there’s no one here to help me and I am going to die.

About the Author
From the time she was old enough to talk, Katy Newton Naas has been creating characters and telling stories. As a child, they sometimes got her into trouble. She knew she wanted to write books when she won a Young Author's competition as a second-grader for her short story titled, "The Grape Pie." (Don't let its tasty title fool you - it was actually a sad little tale!)

Katy devoured books as a child and young adult, always doing chores and odd jobs in order to make enough money to buy more of them. Though she continues to age, her true literature love is and has always been children's and young adult fiction.

Katy currently teaches middle school reading and high school English in southern Illinois, as well as children's church. She graduated from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale with a bachelor's degree in English Education and a master's degree in Reading and Language Studies. She enjoys her life out in the country with her husband, her sweet and rowdy young son (soon to be SONS - her second little boy is due any day!), and all her four-legged kids: Shakespeare, Poe, Morgi, Cappy, Ana, and Gray.

She loves creating both realistic and futuristic stories about kids, tweens, and teens, and feels so fortunate to get to work with them every day as a teacher.

Author Links:


Monday, June 27, 2016

Superheroes and Villains by Alan Janney, Author of The Outlaw series + Giveaway

I am pleased to welcome Alan Janney, author of The Outlaw series! Let's talk about superheroes and villains-- definitely one of my favorite topics.

Superheroes And Villains
(from a literary point of view)
by Alan Janney

I never considered my books to be about superheroes.  Which is weird because they’ve spent a lot of time on the Superhero best seller list, all three books climbing as high as #3.

The Outlaw and Infected were both published in June of 2015.
In July, Amazon’s ‘Also Read’ algorithms kicked in and (based on who had been reading them, I think) placed them in three different Superhero best seller lists.  Since then, I’ve embraced and enjoyed the genre, but the whole thing was accidental.

Who are the best superheroes and villains?
Pro Tip: those shouldn’t be separate lists! 

All of the really really great superheroes have really really great archenemies.  It’s very rare to have one without the other. 

I’ll show you what I mean.  And keep in mind, I’m an author.  Not a comic book expert.  So my lists are made from my mind, and the mind of my son, who is 6.  So in my humble opinion…

First tier.  These superheroes tower above them all.  Especially from a literary standpoint!  They are complicated characters with complicated enemies, which makes for the most compelling read. 

1)    Batman vs. Joker, Penguin, Bane, Poison Ivey, Cat Woman, Riddler, Two-Face, etc.
2)    Spider-Man vs. Green Goblin, Lizard, Rhino, Sandman, Venom, Electro, etc.

See what I mean?  Those are well-known, standout villains.  We know their backstory.  We know what they look like, often without having seen the movies.  We even like some of them.   Batman and Spider-Man are really good heroes who have been pushed into greatness by their host of opponents.

Here is the second tier Why are they second tier?  Because their list of stand-out villains is smaller, less set in stone.  Still great!  But slightly less so, in terms of villainy.

Wolverine - Sabertooth, Juggernaut, Sentinels
Superman - Lex Luthor, General Zod, Doomsday
X-Men - Magneto, Sentinels, Blob, Mystique (Yes, I know there’s overlap)
Avengers - Ultron, Thanos

Third tier  (Only one or two memorable enemies)

Iron Man - Whiplash  (Iron Man is a recent favorite, because we LOVE RDJr.)
Captain America - Red Skull
The Hulk - Abomination
Thor - Loki
Fantastic Four - Dr. Doom

Fourth tier (Still very cool, but I can’t think of a single, memorable proprietary villain)

Black Panther
Scarlet Witch
Wonder Woman
Green Lantern
Human Torch
Aqua Man
Ant Man
Black Widow
Silver Surfer
The Flash

Arguable?  Yes. 
But not in my mind, and I bet I represent the fan off the street.  The non-diehard comic book fan.

What’s the point?
Aspiring authors!  Pay attention!
The villains in your book are just as important at the hero!
Where would Harry Potter be without Snape, Draco, and Voldemort?
Where would Luke be without Darth Vader?
Forgotten, probably.  That’s where.


Thanks, Alan! I can't agree more on the importance of a really good villain. I don't know about you, but I think Loki stole the show from Thor in the Avengers and both Thor movies. Of course we haven't even scratched the surface of the dark superhero like Batman and Wolverine. The ones who walk the line so close to villain at times, they run the risk of crossing it. Hmm... I just mentioned my two favorites... perhaps my tastes run more to the dark side.


The Outlaw: Origins

Alan Janney

YA Sci-Fi/Superheroes
February 26, 2016

A masked vigilante stalks the streets of downtown Los Angeles, disrupting crime and rescuing movie starlets. After being spotted on security cameras and thrust into the national spotlight, he is pursued by both the media and powerful new enemies. Little does the world know the Outlaw is just High School junior Chase Jackson wearing a mask and wondering why his body is suddenly…extraordinary. 

The story continues in Book Two of the Outlaw Series. 'Infected'.

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Saturday, June 25, 2016


We've all felt it
All been there
Sometimes it feels like it steals away my breath
How does one go on when
Every breath is a chore
When even a casual comment
Means something else to the one who receives it
When tears blind us to sight
And reason is a lifetime or a light year away
Nights are the hardest
When we're alone with our thoughts
Of what could have been
If only

But wait
I am stronger than this
I will find myself in the darkest night
Pull through not only for myself but those lost in the dark with me
For I know that the sun will rise tomorrow
I will face the day with my head held high
You cannot bring me down
For I am made of sterner stuff
I will make a new world for myself and those who stand with me
A world where we can all be ourselves without fear
A better world where night is celebrated as a close to a beautiful day
When we open our hearts, love will follow

Love will always be stronger than hate
If we stand together then we are never truly alone
Stand with me, united in love and understanding
Living starts with a choice
Choose to live happily under your terms
Those who truly care for you will follow suit

Friday, June 24, 2016

Top Ten Favorite Paranormal Stories by Tena Stetler, Author of A Witch's Journey

Welcome to Tena Stetler, author of A Witch's Journey! She's here with a top 10 list!

Favorite Ten Paranormal Stories

Oh, my, there are so many, but I’ll try to narrow it down to ten as requested.

Molly Harper  is a snarky funny writer.  You can sit down and fall into her books and enjoy a few hours of wonderful entertainment, laugh out loud fun.
How to Flirt With A Naked Werewolf
How to Seduce A Naked Werewolf

Nora Roberts, her O’Dwyer Trilogy was so much fun and magic.  Always wondering what curve she was going to throw at you next.  I loved the hawking, the horses and the wonderful delightful characters.
The Cousins O’Dwyer Trilogy

Debra Harkness,  All Souls Trilogy – I loved the what she presented the characters and the settings.  I was never much for historical books, but Debra’s tales of 1593 and the things that went on I found interesting,  in Shadow of Night.  I really enjoyed all three books but the ones listed below were my favorites.
Discovery of Witches
Shadow of Night

Rhyannon Byrd’s Blood Runner’s Series – I have all the books in the series, but Last Wolf Standing was my favorite.  A werewolf trying to impress a mortal woman and failing miserably was amusing.  Her world building and characterization is fantastic.  
Last Wolf Standing

Silver Ravenwolf – This is a book that is hard to describe, but I loved it.  The magic, the witches experiences draw you into the story and hold on.
Murder at Witches Bluff

Angie Fox – If you haven’t noticed the thread through all the books I enjoy is humor.  Angie  writes hilarious and spicy books.The situations and characters reactions were laugh out loud funny, as  her heroine a reluctant demon slayer marries a more than sexy greek hunk who is not as he seems. Again, I own the entire series and love all of them, but the one listed below is my favorite except her first book was a great interdiction to the series.
My Big Fat Demon Slayer Wedding

Nancy Atherton – Aunt Dimity Series _ This is a quirky Rags to Riches series with a ghost that communicates via written word in a notebook. An American woman who inherits a cottage in England and lots of fun adventures abound in a quaint English village with eccentric characters. It’s a cozy mystery series.
Aunt Dimity’s Death
      Aunt Dimity & The Village Witch

Yay! Some new books to add to my TBR list! Thanks Tena :)

A Witch's Journey

Tena Stetler

Paranormal Romance
June 15, 2016

Pepper McKay comes from a long line of powerful witches. Unfortunately, magic brings her nothing but trouble. She learned the love of wildlife rescue and rehab from her Aunt Ashling. After graduating from college, Pepper works for Salem Wildlife Sanctuary and lives from paycheck to paycheck until she inherits the McKay property in Lobster Cove. With the family land and resources, she dares to dream of starting her own wildlife rescue and rehabilitation center.

Lathen Quartz, a former Navy SEAL turned handyman maintains the enchanted McKay property for the McKay estate. But someone is trying to steal the McKay magic. Lathen offers to help Pepper achieve her life-long dream of building a wildlife center. During the long hours spent together on the project, their mutual attraction can’t be denied. But each harbors a deep, dark secret. Will they overcome their demons and give love a chance?

Tena Stetler is a paranormal romance and cozy mystery author with an over-active imagination.  She wrote her first vampire romance as a tween, to the chagrin of her mother and the delight of her friends. With the Rocky Mountains outside her window, Tena sits at her computer surrounded by a wide array of paranormal creatures telling her their tales. Colorado is her home; shared with her husband of many moons, a brilliant Chow Chow, a spoiled parrot and a forty-year-old box turtle.  Any winter evening, you can find her curled up in front of a crackling fire with a good book, a mug of hot chocolate and a big bowl of popcorn.

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Thursday, June 23, 2016

Cover Reveal: Fall of Thrones and Thorns by Jennifer Ellision

Fall of Thrones and Thorns
Jennifer Ellision
(Threats of Sky and Sea #3)

Publication date: September 27th 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

War hurtles in, a typhoon over the sea.
After Bree’s life was torn apart, Nereidium had represented a haven to her. A place that—if she could save it—was beyond the King’s reach.
And, at last, she’s arrived upon its shores. But things in Nereidium are not what they should be.
The land is plagued by a rash of mysterious earthquakes, the likes of which it’s never known. The governors are distracted by old traditions, while Bree and her friends grapple with changing identities and the sense that the longer they wait to take action… the greater the danger from Egria grows.
Bree is tired of living under the shadow of King Langdon’s power. And she’s tired of waiting for him to be the first to act.
In this final chapter of the Threats of Sky and Sea series, it all comes down to Nereidium or Egria. To Bree or the King. It’s kill… or be killed.
And not everyone will escape the battle unscathed.
Previous books in the series:
20498423 Beautiful woman with katana isolated on the white background

Author Bio:
Jennifer Ellision spent a great deal of her childhood staying up past her bedtime with a book and a flashlight. When she couldn't find the stories she wanted to read, she started writing them. She loves words, has a soft spot for fanfiction, and is a master of the fangirl flail. She resides in South Florida with her family, where she lives in fear of temperatures below 60 Fahrenheit


Wednesday, June 22, 2016

New Release: Gem Apocalypse by Ruth Silver


Gem Apocalypse
by Ruth Silver

Released: June 15, 2016
Publisher: Lazy Day Publishing

At seventeen, Aria Stone has broken the laws of her kingdom by refusing to come to court and offer herself as a courtesan. When guards storm Aria's house and murder her mother, she is drugged and dragged from her home, taken to the royal palace. Aria must accept her fate: be chosen by a prince of Brayleigh or die. Prince James is third in line for the throne and forced to follow and obey his father's rule. King Gideon is known for running the country and his household with a strict hand. When the prince discovers the young woman brought in by the royal militia, she peaks his interest, and his desire to bring her to his harem. Aria awakens at the palace and is forced to strip down and bare herself to the king and his four sons. Humiliation is just the beginning of her journey to survive. In a tale of murder, heartbreak, lust, and betrayal, Aria must come to terms with the life forced upon her, just as a prince of Brayleigh must recognize his power to change a corrupt system and discover the world outside of their kingdom. Recommended for readers 16+


Aria sneered at James. “Tell me you don’t believe it.” Emeralds, people with green eyes, were known to be power and money hungry. Did James think that about her? It was not true. No part of the belief system created to destroy the world in genocide was true. How could James think of her like that? She may not be easy or pleasant at times, but she wasn’t what the enemy said.

James shifted in his seat. “Of course not, but you are trouble. I can see it in you, the rebellious streak. My father will beat it out of you if you are not careful.”

She did not let his words hurt her. They were mere threats. King Gideon did not have to know of her struggle or her disloyalty to the crown. “So what? I’m supposed to pretend it doesn’t bother me that he ordered the execution of my mother and dragged me from my home, drugged me, stripped me naked, and stole my freedom? No part of what you and your father are doing is okay.” Did he not see the problem or was he too blinded by the gems and riches that he was given?

James grimaced. “I am sorry about your mother. I can’t change our world, but I can protect you here. If you will let me.”

Aria stood. The longer she spent time with James the faster he seemed to be growing on her nerves. “I don’t need your protection.” She thought August or Henry would have been a poor choice to be paired with as a courtesan, but James seemed to be the winner in pissing her off. She would have been happier not discussing her life, pretending to be another girl like Lucie or Adalyn.

“Where are you going?” James asked. He stood and followed after her as she headed inside.

“Back to my room. Which is where?” Aria asked, feeling turned around. Aria hadn’t learned the halls of the palace. It wasn’t as though she was freely allowed to explore the area.

James reached for her arm, pulling her closer, his hand grazing her hip as he leaned in to kiss her.
How dare he! The nerve of him. She elbowed him away, forcefully, before smacking him across the face. “Do not dare touch me ever, without my permission!”  

About the Author

Ruth Silver first began writing poetry as a teenager and reading heaps of fan fiction in her free time.
She attended Northern Illinois University in 2001 and graduated with a Bachelor's in Communication. While in college she spent much of her free time writing with friends she met online and penning her first novel, "Deuces are Wild", which she self-published in 2004. Her favorite class was Creative Writing senior year where she often handed in assignments longer than the professor required because she loved to write and always wanted to finish her stories. Her love of writing, led her on an adventure in 2007 to Melbourne, Australia. Silver enjoys reading and sharing her favorite books with other readers. She runs her own book blog and also enjoys photography and traveling. She currently also writes adult romance novels under the name Allison West.


Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Summer Dreaming $250 Giveaway

This is that time of year when I really miss living in San Diego or Santa Barbara. Perhaps I'm just a beach girl at heart... but there's nothing better than sitting near the ocean on a warm day and feeling the cool spray of the salt water on your face.

Now if only I could find a bottle on the beach with that much cash in it ;)

Summer Dreaming Cash

Summer Dreaming
$250 Cash Giveaway
June 21st to July 15th

An awesome group of bloggers and authors have joined with me to bring you one fabulous prize! One lucky winner will receive… $250 Amazon.com Gift Code or $250 in Paypal Cash   Thanks to these fabulous Sponsors!!

Giveaway Details
$250 in Paypal Cash or a $250 Amazon.com eGift Card Ends 7/15/16 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use money sent via Paypal. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the authors, bloggers and publishers on the sponsor list. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.