Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Author Jane Kindred & Idol of Blood

Hi all!

Please help me welcome Author Jane Kindred to my blog today!



Idol of Blood
Looking Glass Gods
Book 2
Jane Kindred

Genre: Dark fantasy
with erotic and romantic elements/
LGBTQ

Publisher: Samhain Publishing

Date of Publication: June 23, 2015

ISBN: 978-161922-372-1
ASIN: B00U3M5ZNM

Number of pages: 232
Word Count: 80K

Cover Artist: Kanaxa

Book Description:

The price of revenge may be her sanity…and the lives of those she loves.

No longer haunted by memories of her life—and death—as the Meer of Rhyman, Ra looks forward to a quiet existence with her lover Jak in the Haethfalt highlands.

Having made peace with Ahr, her consort from her former life, Ra can finally explore her new relationship, free of the ghosts of the past—until she unwittingly unearths Jak’s own.

Out of instinct, she uses her Meeric power to heal the pain of Jak’s childhood trauma.

But all magic has a price, and Ra’s bill has come due.

Succumbing to the affliction inherent in her race, Ra flees to the mountain ruins where her mother’s temple once stood. As the madness takes hold, she resurrects the ancient city of AhlZel in a tremendous act of magic that seals her fate—and threatens to destroy those who would give up everything to save her from herself.

Product Warnings: Contains dark themes, violence, gender-bending sex, and recovered memories of childhood sexual abuse.

Available at Amazon   BN   iTunes   Kobo   Samhain





Book One Available on Amazon  iTunes  BN  Kobo Samhain

Excerpt:
Since the light was beginning to lower, they set up camp, only a dozen leagues from the green riverbanks of Rhyman. Jak and Geffn lay on either side of Ra, a peculiar triad of necessity, and Geffn, fatigued, was asleep almost instantly.

Ra curled away from him toward Jak beneath her blanket, eyes seeming to glint like a cat’s, though nothing else was visible in the darkness. “We haven’t really had a moment alone since…” The soft murmur trailed off. Jak knew precisely what moment Ra meant. Before they’d left Rhyman; before Ra had disappeared in the night to rescue little Pearl—a Meerchild bred in captivity and kept in a cage by the prelate of In’La; before Ra had set fire to the temple there, and the prelate with it, Jak had thrown caution to the wind and climbed into bed with a goddess. The commitment to celibacy Jak had tried to maintain since before Ra’s arrival in Haethfalt had been tossed aside like a cheap shirt.

After returning to Rhyman with Pearl, Ra had made no further overtures toward Jak, and Jak hadn’t presumed to make any toward Ra.

“It’s all right. We don’t need to—” The weak protest died on Jak’s lips as Ra’s descended on them. Her kisses had a tendency to take one’s breath away, as if she gathered it all into herself, holding it, holding time, before giving it back.

When she finally let them both breathe, Ra slid beneath the blanket and rested her head on Jak’s breast. “I could deepen Geffn’s sleep.”

Jak considered it for a rash moment before squelching the thought. “No. That wouldn’t be fair to him.” That was an understatement. Screwing one’s new lover while asleep next to the jilted lover whose heart one had recently broken would be in bad form, to say the least. And it would add more to that invisible price Ra must be paying if she were to expend magical energy when she had so little physical energy to spare. “We’ll have time enough when we get home.”

“Home.” Ra snuggled closer. “That sounds very nice. I’ve never had a home before. Just a temple.” She said the word as if it meant “jail”. While she spoke, however, her hand moved down Jak’s arm with feathery strokes, dipped over Jak’s hip and across Jak’s belly, and played at the loose drawstring waistband, fingers just inside it.

Jak placed a hand over Ra’s, meaning to stop her, but Ra entwined their fingers and slid them lower. As if it were an act of self-pleasuring, Ra used Jak’s fingers to delve deeper and press against the supple flesh, tentative, leisurely motions encouraging Jak to show her how to proceed.

“When we return to Mound RemPetaJakGeffnMelKeirenRa—” She murmured the absurdly long name of their Haethfalt household as if they were only having a quiet conversation—“I’d like to make a quilt by hand.” She drew Jak’s fingers in a complex pattern, up and down, over and across, doubling back in infinity symbols that ended in sharp, insistent points, like the edges of rings bisecting each other. “Do you like this pattern?”

Jak shivered and breathed ascent as Ra pressed Jak’s fingers into the center point of the bisection. Her motions became smaller, tighter and more definitive.

“Some little rosettes where the squares join,” Ra whispered. “One. Two. Three. Four…” She demonstrated. “With a diamond in the center. Right…there.”

Jak had to grab the blanket and bite down on it to keep the sweet little crooning howl Ra had inspired from escaping audibly.

“And another, there.”

Jak struggled not to thrash, rationing sharp rhythmic breaths into the fabric of the blanket.

“And there.”

Oh gods.

“And then just there.”

In the grip of a wave of pleasure so intense it was almost unbearable, Jak clutched Ra’s hand so she could no longer effect her blissful torment, the other hand digging into the bedroll as pantomimed moans were buried in the crook of an elbow.

“Perhaps in peacock blue with threads of gold,” Ra continued as if she hadn’t just destroyed Jak utterly, her other hand casually stroking once more up Jak’s arm. “The colors of Ludtaht Ra. Though it may be time for new colors. I’ve always liked indigo.” She nestled against the hollow of Jak’s neck, putting a little kiss there before relaxing with a sigh to match Jak’s heaving breath. “Does that work for you?”

It took a moment to remember how to swallow and speak. “Work for me?” Jak let out a nervous, whispered laugh. “Just about killed me. I’m crazy about it.”



About the Author:

Jane Kindred is the author of epic fantasy series The House of Arkhangel’sk, Demons of Elysium, and Looking Glass Gods. She spent her formative years ruining her eyes reading romance novels in the Tucson sun and watching Star Trek marathons in the dark. She now writes to the sound of San Francisco foghorns while two cats slowly but surely edge her off the side of the bed.










Tour giveaway

1 set of signed print copies of Books 1 and 2 of Looking Glass Gods




1 Cult of Isis Necklace

Please help me thank Jane for joining us today! Please check out her links and sign up for the contests!

Keep Writing!
Jodie Pierce

Friday, June 26, 2015

Author Kaylie Newell & Hunter of Her Heart

Hi all!

Please help me welcome Author Kaylie Newell to my blog today!





Hunter of Her Heart
Kaylie Newell

Release Date: 6/23/15
Genre: Paranormal

Publisher: Entangled

Tagline: To love a bad boy is to love the beast inside him…

About the Book:

Bad boy Zane Wolfe has always been wild and reckless. Even though he’s hot for his high school sweetheart, Candi Brooks, settling down has never been in his plans. Beyond that, he’s changing in strange ways—and begins to wonder if there's truth to the local folklore that claims his family is cursed to be werewolves...

There's never been a time when waitress Candi didn't have a serious weakness for Zane and his intense, dark sex appeal. She craves him. But after her life changes dramatically, and Zane won’t commit, Candi’s reached her limit. She can't wait forever...so she's taking her heart off the table before it gets good and broken.

Something mysterious is going on in Wolfe Creek, and danger stalks Candi. Zane will do anything he can to protect her. But the one person she needs protection from might just be him…




About the Author:

For Kaylie Newell, writing ranks right up there with the things she loves most in life- falling somewhere behind her family, but ahead of Bradley Cooper (which says a lot).  She fell in lust with the romance genre when she was about thirteen and began sneaking her mother’s paperbacks from the bedside table.  After acne, college, marriage and kids, she decided to take a crack at writing one herself.  Turned out to be the best adventure she’s ever taken.  When she’s not dreaming up her next book, she’s usually eating chocolate or walking the family mutt.  In that order.

Author Website/Blog: www.kaylienewell.com

Author Twitter: @KaylieNewell




Check out her links and book!

Keep Writing!
Jodie Pierce

Monday, June 22, 2015

Author Michelle Hiscox & A New Day at Midnight

Hi all!

Please help me welcome Author Michelle Hiscox to my blog today!



A New Day at Midnight
The Hearne Family Saga
Book 1
Michelle Hiscox

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Publisher: Bookkus Publishing

Date of Publication: February 14, 2015

ISBN: 0991709497
ASIN: B00TGOODU4

Page Count Print – 264       
Page Count Electronic – 268
Word Count: 92,691

Cover Artist: Bookkus Publishing

Book Description:

When Merik Hearne finally lays claim to the woman that betrayed him, she inspires much more than his need for revenge—but is her love worth dying for again?

Condemned to play host to a demon, the scarred Romani leader has amassed a fortune with only one goal in mind—to possess Hannah Worthington, the traitorous beauty that has eluded him for over a decade. With an exchange of coin, everything he has been striving for is within reach but nothing is as he imagined. The tender, sharp-tongued woman he encounters tests the bounds of his convictions and he is torn between the promise of reckoning and longing for a love that once destroyed him.

Exchanged for a purse of gold and informed she is to be a slave, Hannah vows she has not survived a lifetime of loss only to wither under the likes of Merik Hearne. And she will do everything she can to make sure he knows it. Despite his overbearing manner, his fierce scars, and her own determination to escape him, she begins to see that something beautiful might lie beneath…something that belongs only to her. She must discover the angle from which the great lord plays before his dark desires consume them both. 

As they struggle to find truth amid pasts marred by sorrow and secrecy, they are unaware that a vengeful apostle orchestrates the rise of a forgotten god—and the end of their chance at a life together.

Available at  Amazon   Amazon.ca   Amazon.co.uk  BN
Excerpt 1

As Merik looked about the darkness of his cell with new eyes, he saw Hannah standing in the corner. He knew she was not truly there, but the voice of the other ensured he did not look away as it whispered in his ear. He saw her many times, always a mirage, always torturous. Unsure if his rage outweighed his disappointment at her absence, he listened.
She mocks you, young one. She told those men where to find you. She told them lies about you. They could know nothing without her betrayal. You will find her. Make her bleed. You will find her and make her pay for each transgression. Sink your teeth deep within her and watch the blood flow over the ground. Drink her dry until her offences are but a memory. It will ease the agony, as nothing else will.
Merik saw her a thousand times during his short stay in the cellar. The pain sliced through him, and it would not ease no matter how much his father fed him. Nothing helped to suffuse the suffering until he began seeing Hannah in the confines of the cell.
He saw her exactly as she looked that night at the clearing. In spite of himself, he found himself reaching for her hand, and did so each time she appeared to him. Desire bubbled to the surface and he despised it, closing his eyes against the sight of her. The image played over and over in his mind, running like a crooked wheel. He saw the woman who destroyed him, the woman who destroyed his brothers, and he could think only of making her suffer—until he thought of touching her again.
The bottle shattered in his hand from the force of his grasp, and he looked down to see shards of glass embedded within the flesh of his palm. When he looked up, Hannah was gone.


Excerpt 2

Hannah realized Merik had left her doors unlocked. Again. Did he believe she would stay now that she knew his true name and nature? She dare not utter the real question plaguing her, but it invaded her mind nonetheless.
Is he right? A large ember escaped from the iron latticework in front of the fire, landing on the rug at her feet. She watched it smoulder.
Smoke curled up in delicate tendrils, disappearing before reaching the high ceiling. She stared for several long moments, willing the flame to grow, to consume her. It held the colour of Merik’s eyes, burning gold and crimson. A small flame flickered to life, hungry for progress until she stamped it out with the heel of her foot.
Rising from the fire to flop on her bed, she stopped short as an echo rang through the hall. Certain her battered senses played tricks on her, she pulled back her covers to lay down but heard it again.
Whether it was a call of rage, grief, or agony she could not distinguish. It came from Merik’s quarters, echoing deep within the shadows of the hall. Padding to her door, she warred between anger over his treatment of her and the desire to ease his pain.
She could not ignore the fact he’d told her the truth. Pulling a robe about her shoulders, she kicked off her charred slipper. Without consulting her mind, she made the decision with her heart. She rested her hand on the door, opening the barrier between her and the unknown.
“Shit. Shit, shit, shit. What am I doing? I can stay in my rooms. There is hardly any need to go out there.”
Another tortured cry rose in the air, strengthening her resolve to help Merik.
Lighting a candle, she forced herself to go into the hall. Another cry rang through the air, and as she got closer to Merik’s chamber, she finally understood what he was saying. Her name.
“I’m coming, Merik.” Running to his room, she entered through the open door to see an empty chamber. Desperation overrode the fear hammering her heart against her chest. The room smelled of blood, of sickness. Could Vetala even get sick? Could they die?
“No, please no, not again. Merik? Merik, please call my name.”
He groaned. As she followed the source of the noise, the candle shook in her hand. The hot wax stung her flesh when she stopped several steps in front of a half-open door set in the wall.
“Merik?” The smell of death clung to the entrance and she gagged. The candle wobbled in her hand. She steadied it, saying a quick thanks to God it did not go out. She could not bear to go forth in the darkness without light. Setting the candle on the floor, she swung the door wide. The candle flickered as she picked it up. Fear twisted her guts and no matter how she tried, she could not stop her hands from shaking. She took another step.
“Merik?” It took her eyes several moments to see more than a foot from her face. When she saw him in the dim light, she gasped. He now stood in front of her. It took her several more moments to realize he was not standing of his own volition, but rather restrained by chains embedded in the stone wall. When he lifted his head, she covered her mouth to stifle a scream.
Eyes of molten gold and crimson stared back at her. His jaw and facial bones were distended, his hands curled into claws. The changes were much more severe than the few instances she attributed to the loss of her mind.
“I…I…” Stepping back toward the entrance, her gaze never left Merik’s. She turned her back on him to commence a rather spineless retreat, but could not get her feet to cooperate.
“Hannah?” The voice held much more than pain. What? Desperation? Hope? She could not move as her heart and mind waged war. Despite his appearance, she knew beneath the angled bone protruding from his flesh, his distorted face, and the fangs visible in his mouth, Merik stood in front of her. The man she met a decade before. The man looking at her with the same single focused intensity with which he always did. The man she loved.
Taking another step and hearing nothing but her own harsh breathing, she took one more.







About the Author:

Michelle Hiscox is a Paranormal Romance fan and author who hails from Drumheller, Alberta. The dinosaur bones buried in the hills of her hometown inspired the first stories she ever wrote, and she feels blessed to walk those same hills with her daughter today. Crocus flowers and dust bowls full of cactus never fail to inspire.

While her little girl and husband provides many welcome distractions to writing, it's something she always finds her way back to. Michelle is the proud, and slightly crazy, owner of two dogs and three cats, all animals she loves more than she reasonably should. She's been reading voraciously since she was a child and, one night, pulled her nose from a book to start writing her own.





Amazon Author Page –http://www.amazon.com/l/B00VO2K990



Tour giveaway


5 print or ebook copies of A New Day at Midnight (winner’s choice, print available to US and Canadian Shipping Only)

Link to giveaway form

Please help me thank Michelle for joining us today! Please check out her links and giveaway!

Keep Writing!
Jodie Pierce

Author Scott A. Lerner & The Fraternity of the Soul Eater

Hi all!

Please help me welcome Author Scott A. Lerner to my blog today!



The Fraternity of the Soul Eater
A Samuel Roberts Thriller
Book 3
Scott A. Lerner



Genre: Urban Fantasy, Thriller

Publisher: Camel Press
Date of Publication: June 15, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-60381-289-4
ASIN: Not yet available

Number of pages: 218
Word Count: 57k words

Cover Artist: Sabrina Sun

Book Description:

It’s been a while since Samuel Roberts was called upon to save mankind, and he’s getting restless. His girlfriend Susan thinks he’s a danger junkie, and he’s worried he has a hero complex. He’s back to his usual small-town lawyerly duties in Champaign-Urbana, handling divorces and helping people beat DUI raps. But then a young fraternity pledge calls. During an initiation ceremony he witnessed the live sacrifice of a young woman, but he had so much alcohol in his system that no one believes him. Except Sam. Lately Egyptian lore has been creeping into his life, his dreams, and his movie preferences, and he’s pretty sure he knows why. Evil is knocking on his door again.

Is the call welcome? Why can’t Sam be satisfied with his comfortable legal practice and gorgeous redheaded girlfriend? Maybe it’s because he knows that, as inadequate as he may feel to the task, he and his friend Bob may be humanity’s only hope against ancient supernatural forces combined with modern genetic engineering. Come hell or high water. Or in this case, the underworld or subterranean pyramids.

The Fraternity of the Soul Eater is the third book in the Samuel Roberts Thriller series, which began with Cocaine Zombies and continued with Ruler of Demons.

Available at Amazon


Excerpt:

She was wearing tight black jeans and a low-cut cropped T-shirt that exposed ample cleavage. A golden ankh dangled between her breasts. On one forearm was a tattoo of a bird I assumed to be a lark, and on the other, a tattoo of a hawk. Her bright blue eyes matched her hair. She was striking looking but by no means beautiful. A slight muffin top was made more visible by her short shirt, and she had apparently broken her nose at least once in her life. She smelled like sandalwood and cinnamon.
I would never cheat on Susan, but I had to admit there was something sexy about Lark. I tried to put my prurient thoughts away and deal with the issue at hand. Also, the ankh made me wonder if she was playing for the other side. I was not a big fan of birds, which for me had always been a harbinger of bad luck.
“So what is it that you couldn’t tell me at the courthouse?”
“I’m a graduate student at the University of Illinois and heard from a friend about Chris’s case. I went to the preliminary hearing to get more information.”
“That’s fine—it’s an open courtroom—but I can’t tell you the specifics of his case.”
“I am here to help you, not the other way around.”
“Cool!” I leaned back in my chair, trying to look casual. “Tell me what you know.”
“My sister was at a party at that fraternity three years ago. She has not been seen since. I believe she was killed there. I can’t prove it, but I have been trying to ever since.”
“Did you call the police?”
“No, I called Pizza Hut.” She sighed. “I’m … sorry. This whole thing …. it’s hard to talk about. Yes, I called the police and the FBI. I even hired a private investigator.”
“No luck?”
“None. In fact, they all told me to let it go.”
“I take it from the fact you are here that you didn’t ‘let it go.’ ”
“You take it right. I was attending the University of Iowa. I was close to getting an MFA in fine arts but I transferred to the University of Illinois a year and a half ago. I’ve been investigating the fraternity ever since.” As she spoke Lark moved her arms about in quick gestures, reminding me of the bird she was named for.
“What have you learned?”
“For starters, I believe your client.”
“Why?”
She hesitated, as if pained by what she was going to relate. “Last year I dated a guy named George Hammond. He was a rich kid, kind of a geek, but he was okay. I essentially stalked him until he agreed to go out with me. At first I was only interested because he was pledging the fraternity. I know I was using him, but he was using me too. When he got accepted into the fraternity he told me a few of their secrets.”
“Any chance I could chat with George directly?”
She shook her head, a little violently. “Not unless we hold a séance. I’m sorry. I appreciate you speaking with me, and I don’t mean to be sarcastic. George died in a car accident. Actually, he was murdered, but I can’t prove it.”
“What did he tell you?”
“Every fall the fraternity sacrifices a girl. Their choice is based on her not having much in the way of family or money. They want someone who won’t be missed. The organs are removed as though she is to be mummified. Since there’s no pyramid to bury them in, the bodies are not wrapped or mummified or even kept.”
It was difficult to absorb what she was telling me. “That is nightmarish. What the hell do they do with the bodies?”
She jerked her shoulders up and down in a shaky shrug. “Who knows?”
“Why would they do such a thing?”
She looked mournful now. “George didn’t know. It may have been to test the pledges’ loyalty to the fraternity. He said they would commit the murder at a hidden temple and that the members would have to chant ancient prayers as part of some strange ritual. The leaders of the fraternity told him that the girls’ souls were being fed to the ‘Soul Eater,’ but George didn’t think they were serious.”
“Do you believe what George told you?”
“Yes.”
“Why?”
She looked me hard in the eye. “My sister is missing.

Chapter One

I’d been staring at the blank screen of my computer for the last two hours. I had seen too much. I had opened doors that should not have been opened. In a world filled with demons and monsters there was simply no room left for the mundane. I owed the Fourth District Appellate Court a thoughtful and detailed brief. I owed my client the effort he paid me for. Yet at times it all seemed so pointless. My black thoughts were interrupted by the telephone.
“Law Office.”
“Sam, it’s Susan.”
“How may I be of service?”
“How about dinner tonight?” she asked.
“Sure, what do you have a taste for?”
“Indian?”
“Indian as in Mahatma Gandhi or Indian like Geronimo?”
“Like there are any Native American restaurants in Urbana. Can you even think of an example of traditional Native American cooking?”
“Buffalo burgers and fry bread.”
She knew better than to respond. I could just see her rolling her eyes. “How about Mumbai Grill at five thirty?”
“I will be there or I will be square.”
Susan was my girlfriend. We’d been through a lot together. She was worried about me. She thought I was depressed. She was right, of course; I was depressed. We just didn’t agree on what I should do about it. She felt I should see a doctor. I felt I should not.
I was depressed because I realized the world was filled with evil and indifference toward suffering. I was depressed because I knew that the forces of darkness would rise again. I was depressed because it was unlikely I’d have the luck and strength to defeat them again. I was also depressed because the Mumbai grill had Chapati bread instead of Naan.
I was also wary of mental health care providers. They can help with the symptoms of depression but have no pill to cure the underlying problem. The problem is not that I fail to perceive the world as it is. The problem is that I see the world exactly as it is. So the question was not why I was depressed, but why wasn’t everyone else? As you get older you realize each day is another day closer to death. I used to find solace in the belief that I could leave the world in better shape than when I got here. Lately, however, I was starting to believe the world was not getting better. If anything, people were less kind than in the past. The environment was becoming irreparably damaged. Evil was simply waiting like a wolf until the bunny that is humanity hopped a few inches closer.
Don’t get me wrong: I was still able to function. I didn’t take warm baths while listening to Johnny Cash sing “Hurt,” with only a straight razor for company. At the same time I wondered what would happen if I did. Would it make any difference?
I decided to go for a walk. It was the beginning of October but warm enough that I didn’t need a jacket. I wore jeans, tennis shoes, and a gray T-shirt with Bucky the Badger extending his middle finger toward any onlooker. A plain gray sweatshirt covered the obscene gesture. I’d been scheduled to be in court today, but the judge’s clerk had called to inform me that the hearing had to be continued due to a judicial conference, thus explaining my casual attire.
I have short brown hair that is beginning to gray. I’m not sure if that is due to age as much as it is due to having seen too much in my life. I’m in pretty good physical condition for my late thirties. I’m of average height and consider myself relatively handsome, although I’ll admit there are those who disagree.
I found myself walking in the direction of campus. I walked west on Main Street and took a left onto Lincoln Avenue. Soon I was passing dorms and red brick buildings. Most of the campus buildings at the University of Illinois are composed of red brick—actually, a combination of two colors of brick, both reddish but slightly different hues. The campus was busier than usual. The students were taking advantage of the warm weather and wandering about.
Each year the students look younger and younger. The girls, or as is more politically correct if not more accurate, the women, reminded me of how old I was getting. Their impossibly firm bodies and unwrinkled faces reminded me of more innocent times. Sometimes I thought I recognized someone from high school, only to realize the person I would have known would be twenty years older. The boys appeared just as young but were attempting to look older with the addition of scruffy beards and multiple tattoos. My father told me he knew he was getting older when at the football games he spent more time casting inappropriate glances at the mothers than at the students. At the last football game I attended I found myself concerned that the Illinettes, in their skimpy outfits, might take a chill if they did not put on sweaters—or maybe sweat suits. When did I become so old?
Having lost track of time and direction, I realized I was walking down Gregory Street. On my right was the back of the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. On my left was the front of the Stoakfield Museum.
It is an enormous modern building, a venue for numerous plays and performances throughout the year. It was built in 1969 and has various levels and roofs. In front there is an outdoor amphitheater and inside, a number of indoor theaters in various sizes.
Some of the more important milestones of my life were marked in that building. My high school graduation and my law school graduation both took place in the main auditorium. I was pleased to be finished with my formal education. Neither ceremony provided me much in the way of satisfaction. At least at my high school graduation there were the whoops and hollering of proud parents at inappropriate times to break up the boredom. It was always the parents of the children who barely graduated that made the most noise. That would be the last graduation ceremony they expected to attend, so they wanted to make it count.
I also remember the hidden corners of the roof being an important high school hangout. There was a movie theater down the street known as the Thunderbird Theatre, which has since been turned into a bar and local music hangout. Next to it was a pizza place called Tretoes. The owner was a Russian immigrant who had lost two toes to frostbite. He named the place after his remaining three toes, Tretoes.
People used to go to the movies and smoke pot on the roof. After seeing the movie The Wall, I took my girlfriend up there to make out. I feel a bit ashamed. I can remember the name of the pizza place but have long since forgotten the name of the girl. I do remember that she was young and smelled of cigarettes, pizza, and apple-blossom shampoo. Her hair was long and dark and her skin was pale. I don’t remember if at the time she was considered pretty, but in retrospect most high school girls were. It’s not just their youth but their optimism that makes them attractive. Amazing how life sucks the beauty from this world. It is a true eye-opener when you first realize you can’t be whatever or whoever you want to be—all the lies of parents and guidance counselors coming to light.
The worst part of adulthood is the shocking discovery that love can be as tiring and stale as any other emotion, given enough time. Children born with endless potential grow up in a world where it is mostly wasted and tossed aside. The souls of our youth, like rusted tin cans, fill the trash heaps we call penitentiaries and minimum wage jobs.
The sadness evoked by dredging up my past caused me to turn away from the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. I veered to my left and moved up the walkway to the Stoakfield Museum. Built in 2002, the museum was made of the same familiar red brick as most of the other buildings on campus, yet it relied heavily on glass and cement as well. The metal roof was towering and gave the structure a more modern look. The museum’s collection used to be housed on the top floor of Lincoln Hall, a 1911 building located on the quad. At the time it looked like a junk shop; ancient artifacts were shoved together, only inches apart. I kind of liked the chaos. I felt like an archeologist, discovering new items each time I came to visit. It was a bit disconcerting, however, to see an old tea cup next to an ushabti—a funerary figurine from Ancient Egypt—or a bronze sculpture next to an old radio.
The Stoakfield Museum was completely different, perhaps in an effort to rebel against its predecessor. The artifacts were elegantly displayed in their Plexiglas cages. The floors were white and the sun shone through large windows. The display area was twenty times larger with a third as many artifacts. I was told most of the collection was sequestered in spacious rooms in the basement, inaccessible to the public, and that only five percent of the collection was on display at any one time.
I walked up the wide, curved staircase to the second floor. It seemed to float, for the individual stairs didn’t touch the ground but were built into the wall. The room I enjoyed most held the ancient artifacts. I’d been told that an impressive collection of Babylonian and Sumerian clay tablets was hidden from the public. A few sat in their display cases waiting for admirers. What I wanted to see were the items from ancient Egypt. For some reason I have always been fascinated with ancient Egypt. As I walked into the room, a large ebony sculpture of the Pharaoh Khafre stared out at me. It was impressive, but I was disappointed to see a sign indicating the statue was a reproduction.
There was a new display I had not seen before. In a glass case was a papyrus with a picture of the jackal-headed Anubis, standing before a scale. The scale looked like the common image of the scales of justice, with a heart on one pan and a feather on the other. Underneath were rows of detailed hieroglyphs. The description next to the document read “Spell Number 26 from The Book of the Dead.” Apparently the heart of a dead man would be weighed. If it weighed less than a feather, the soul would go on to the afterlife. The afterlife, sometimes referred to as “The Land of Two Fields,” was a heavenly place. If the heart was too heavy, the soul would be devoured.
The ancient Egyptians believed the soul was in the heart. Therefore the heart always remained with the mummy, while other important organs such as the stomach, intestines, liver, and lungs, were stored in canopic jars. Other organs of less importance, such as the brain, were cast aside.
I looked up and saw another display I hadn’t noticed previously—a new ancient mummy in its case. The phrase “new ancient mummy” reminded me of “jumbo shrimp.” In other words, an oxymoron, a term that sounds like something a stupid teenager would use to wipe his face. The mummy was the museum’s second. It was larger than the first and slightly darker in color. It was shaped like a giant Cuban cigar, lying in its Plexiglas tomb without a sarcophagus or a mask. It must have felt naked. The lyrics to the song “King Tut” started running through my head. Childhood memories of a banjo-playing comedian on roller skates appearing on The Johnny Carson Show filled my mind.
I looked down at my borrowed Jaeger-LeCoultre watch. It was almost five, and the museum was about to close. I headed out the door, leaving history behind me. It would take a half hour to get to the restaurant. If I walked at a leisurely pace, I would be there early, but that was all right.
When I reached the quad, I stopped to watch the squirrels gather acorns and whatever junk food the students had left behind. It was fall and the trees had turned various shades of yellow and orange. The squirrels seemed particularly industrious. It must have been happy hour for squirrels. They seemed to ignore me but nod to one another as they passed, food bulging their cheeks.




About the Author:

Author and attorney Scott A. Lerner resides in Champaign, Illinois. He obtained his undergraduate degree in psychology from the University of Wisconsin in Madison and went on to obtain his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Illinois in Urbana Champaign. He is currently a sole practitioner in Champaign, Illinois. The majority of his law practice focuses on the fields of criminal law and family law. Lerner’s first novel and the first Samuel Roberts Thriller, Cocaine Zombies, won a bronze medal in the mystery/cozy/noir category of the 2013 Independent Publisher (IPPY) Awards. The second book in the series is Ruler of Demons. The Fraternity of the Soul Eater is book 3. Book 4, The Wiccan Witch of the Midwest, will be released on Halloween, 2015.

You can find Scott online at: www.scottlerner.camelpress.com






Tour giveaway

5 eBook copies of The Fraternity of the Soul Eater

Link to giveaway
http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/ba112ffc1054 

Let's thank Scott for joining us today! Please check out his links and book!

Keep Writing!
Jodie Pierce

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Author Victoria Danann & Two Princes: The Biker & The Billionaire

Hi all!

Please help me welcome Author Victoria Danann to my blog today!



Two Princes: The Biker and The Billionaire
Sons of Sanctuary
Book 1
Victoria Danann

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Publisher: 7th House Publishing,
Imprint of Andromeda LLC

Date of Publication: June 16, 2015

Number of pages: 300
Word Count: 90,000

Cover Artist: Victoria Danann

Book Description:

Brigid Roan is a graduate student at the University of Texas. She had no trouble getting her thesis approved, but finding a Hill Country motorcycle club willing to give her access to their lifestyle had started to seem impossible. Then she got a lead. A friend of a friend had a cousin with ties to The Sons of Sanctuary.

What she wanted was information to prove a proposition. What she didn’t want was to fall for one of the members of the club. Especially since she had set out to prove that motorcycle clubs are organized according to the same structure as primitive tribal society.

Brash Fornight was standing in line at the H.E.B. Market when his world tipped on its axis. While waiting his turn to check out, his gaze had wandered to the magazine display and settled on the new issue of “NOW”. The image on the cover, although GQ’d up in an insanely urbane way, was… him.

After reading the article, Brash threw some stuff in a duffle and left his club, The Sons of Sanctuary, with a vague explanation about needing a couple of days away. He left his Jeep at the Austin airport and caught a plane for New York, on a mission to find the guy who was walking around with his face.

Two brothers, one a player, one a playboy, are on a collision course with destiny and a woman who thought she won a prize when she was allowed a look inside the Sons of Sanctuary MC.

Available at Amazon  BN   Kobo   iTunes


Excerpt:

“Sir?” Brash Fornight gradually became aware that someone behind him in the grocery checkout line was trying to get his attention. “Sir?” He refocused and glanced behind him. The woman leaning on a cart overflowing with chip bags and cookie boxes nodded toward the cashier indicating that it was his turn to move forward. Brash looked her in the eye and had to give her props. Most people wouldn’t have the balls to try to herd a guy wearing Sons of Sanctuary MC leather.
The club employed a woman who cooked and did grocery shopping several times a week as part of her job description, but Brash didn’t like to explain his relentless craving for peanuts and he liked being teased about it even less. He didn’t know whether it was the Vitamin B or the fat or just because he liked the taste, but he couldn’t imagine going a day without them.
That’s how he came to be standing statue still In the grocery checkout line, being prompted by some woman with more nerve than sense. While he was waiting, his eyes drifted over the magazine display and settled on the cover of “NOW”, on the Most Eligible Bachelor edition no less. The debonair figure staring back was wearing Brash’s own face and body. He looked different with short hair and a four thousand dollar suit with the shirt fashionably open at the neckline, but the similarity was inescapable.
On impulse he grabbed the magazine and tossed it onto the conveyor belt with his week’s stash of peanuts.
He stuffed the bags into the saddlebags of his bike and roared toward home, nervously tapping his fingers on handlebars at red lights, riding on shoulders to keep from slowing down. He was anxious to get to the privacy of his own room and read about Branach St. Germaine.
Two beers, one jar of peanuts, and one “NOW” article later, Brash was sitting on the edge of his bed looking at the wall, seeing nothing but his own heavy thoughts. He pulled out his phone, looked up a website, and waited on hold for ten minutes to hear the time of the next flight from Austin to New York.

There was a flight to Newark in a little over three hours. He looked at his watch and calculated the time it would take to drive from Dripping Springs at that time of day. As he booked the flight, he stood up, walked to the small closet, grabbed a duffel bag, and began shoving stuff into it. Ten minutes later, he closed his door and locked it, threw the duffel over his shoulder, and headed straight for the office downstairs. He dropped the duffel on the hallway floor beside the closed door and knocked.
“Yeah?” Brash looked inside, glad that his dad was by himself, and stepped in. “What’s up?”
“I’m takin’ personal time, Pop. Gonna be gone for a couple of days.”
“What the hell is ‘personal time’?”
The gruffness made Brash smile. “It means I’m not gonna be here if you call and I’m not tellin’ you why.”
The Sons of Sanctuary President looked up at Brash, over the top of his readers, and narrowed his eyes. “You got a secret?”
“Everybody’s got secrets.”
Brandon Fornight studied his son for a minute. “True enough. Is it the kind of secret that could affect this club?”
Brash shook his head. “Don’t see how.”
“Well, then. See you… When did you say you’d be back?”
“I didn’t.”
“Bein’ purposefully vague, are you?”
Brash grinned. “That’s why they call it personal time. But I expect to be back Friday.”
“You gonna have your phone with you?” When Brash nodded, Bran looked back down at his ledger in a deliberately dismissive gesture. “Well, get outta here then.”
Brash parked his bike in the airplane hangar. The structure had already been on the property when the club had bought it and turned it into a compound twenty years earlier. They used part of it for vehicle maintenance and repair and part for parking.
Some of the guys who were working looked over and shot curious glances his way when Brash threw his duffel into his pickup and started it up, but it wasn’t their way to ask questions. The Sons figured that if somebody wanted you to know something, they’d tell you.
Brash took a cab to a midtown hotel, wondering all the way why human beings would choose to live in such a place. As he slid his credit card across the hotel counter to the agent on duty, he glanced at the name, Brandon Fornight. It seemed unlikely that it was a coincidence that that the mysterious look-alike’s first name began with the same four letters. He ordered room service and pulled out his laptop.
Getting intel on the guy didn’t take advanced ops. Within an hour Brash knew where Brannach St. Germaine worked, what kind of car he drove, what kind of women he dated, who his tailor was, and where he liked to dine. There was no shortage of photos online, but the one that grabbed his attention wasn’t one of the many with starlets or debutantes on his arm. It was the one taken with his arm around his mother as they were arriving together for some red carpet fundraiser. Brash had an almost irresistible compulsion to reach up and touch her face on the screen in front of him.
The knock on the door signaled that room service had arrived. It cost a fortune, but looked and tasted like shit. So he closed the computer and went out for a walk to clear his head and find something edible.



 About the Author:

USA Today Bestselling Author, Victoria Danann, is making her debut into Contemporary Romance with releases in May and June 2015, after taking the world of PNR by storm.

Her Knights of Black Swan series won Best Paranormal Romance Two years in a Row (2013, 2014). ~Reviewers Choice Awards, The Paranormal Romance Guild.

Victoria’s paranormal romances come with uniquely fresh perspectives on “imaginary” creatures, characters, and themes. She adds a dash of scifi, a flourish of fantasy, enough humor to make you laugh out loud, and enough steam to make you squirm in your chair. Her heroines are independent femmes with flaws and minds of their own whether they are aliens, witches, demonologists, psychics, past life therapists, or financial analysts from Dallas. Her heroes are hot and hunky, but they also have brains, character, and good manners – usually – whether they be elves, demons, berserkers, werewolves, or vampires.

The first book of the Knights of Black Swan Paranormal Romance Series, My Familiar Stranger, was nominated for Best Paranormal Romance of 2012 by both Reviewers’ Choice and Readers’ Choice Awards. All of her books have opened on the Amazon Best Sellers list and earned Night Owl Reviews Top Pick awards.

Many have appeared on Listopia Book of the Month as #1 across all genres.

For books published in 2013, Black Swan won three awards.

1. Best Paranormal Romance Series
2. Best Paranormal Romance Novel – A SUMMONER’S TALE

3. Best Vampire~Shifter Novel – MOONLIGHT.

In 2014, Solomon’s Sieve won Best Vampire Novel.

Photo- If you’re interested in me personally, I am also a classically trained musician who defected to Classic Rock and that’s my first love. Yeah. Even more than writing.

This is Roadhouse, the very best in Classic Rock, taken near The Last Concert Cafe, Houston Texas, 2011. I was the utility player which means I played rhythm guitar, keyboards, sang backups and a few leads.





@vdanann


  
Tour giveaway


NOTE: This is the celebrity featured on the cover of TWO PRINCES.

Rafflecopter:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/ba112ffc982

Please thank Victoria for joining us today! Please check out all her links!

Keep Writing!
Jodie Pierce