Thursday, January 30, 2014

#GuestPost: Buried Threads by Kaylin McFarren

Nine Tricks for Great Suspense Stories

Suspense is a hard discipline to master, but here are a few tips I picked up through lectures, conferences and workshops, ensuring a thrilling experience for readers.

  1. Give the reader a lofty viewpoint. The reader should have foresight. Let the reader see the viewpoints of both the protagonist and the antagonist. By giving the reader a ringside seat to the story’s developments, she gets to see the trouble before the protagonist does. The reader sees the lines of convergence between the protagonist and antagonist and feels the consequences of the perils ahead. Also, this technique allows the writer to place emotional weight on the reader. The tension will build from the reader’s self-imposed fears of knowing that the hero is on a collision course with disaster.

  2. Use time constraints. Another key way to build suspense is through the use of time. The protagonist should be working against the clock, and the clock should be working for the bad guys. In Robert Ludlum and Gayle Lynds’ The Altman Code, Covert One agent Jon Smith has only days to prove the Chinese are sending chemical weapon materials to Iraq. In Greg Iles’ 24 Hours, Will and Karen Jennings have one day to escape their captors to rescue their child from a kidnapper. Every minute you shortchange the protagonist is another notch up on the burner under the reader’s seat.

  3. Keep the stakes high. This doesn’t necessarily mean the story’s hook has to be about global annihilation. But the story must be about a crisis that’s devastating to the protagonist’s world, and the hero must be willing to do anything to prevent it from occurring. Therefore, the story could be about a father trying to rescue his wife and child from an impending flood, or an innocent man who’s framed for murder going on the run to establish his innocence. The crisis has to be important to ensure readers will empathize with the protagonist.

  4. Apply pressure. The protagonist should be working under what seems to be insurmountable odds. All his skills and strengths must be stretched to the breaking point in order to save the day. The hero should bend, but never buckle under the pressure the antagonist applies. There should be only one person left feeling helpless in the story, and that’s the reader.

  5. Create dilemmas. Suspense loves a dilemma. The antagonist needs to be throwing things at the protagonist that present awkward challenges or choices that will test her caliber. The choice must seemingly be a lose-lose situation for the protagonist. This may take the form of choosing to save one person while leaving another to die, picking up a gun after swearing an oath never to do so again or taking that offered drink after years of sobriety.

    The antagonist, by his nature, will cross lines without a second’s thought, while fully conscious of his actions. But the protagonist is a different breed—as a hero, he can’t let innocent people die without a fight, or stray from his morals or promises. The great thing about dilemmas is that they need time to be solved, and with the pressure of time constraints, the tension can only build. So test, tease and tempt the protagonist.

  6. Complicate matters. Pile on the problems. Give the protagonist more things to do than he can handle. The hero has to be stretched wafer-thin. If you’ve ever seen one of those old music-hall acts where spinning plates are perched on top of flimsy bamboo poles, and there’s some poor guy running himself ragged trying to keep all the plates from crashing down, well, that’s how it should be for the protagonist. The hero should be that guy trying to keep all those plates spinning, while the antagonist is forever adding another plate to the line. By the end of the book, the protagonist should be just barely preventing everything from crashing to the ground.

  7. Be unpredictable. Nothing in life runs perfectly to plan for anyone. Make nothing straight-
forward for the protagonist. The hero shouldn’t be able to rely on anything going right for her, and any step forward should come at a price. Also remember…

  8. Create a really good villain. In a mystery, the villain has to be somewhat transparent because you don’t want the reader to catch on to who she is too quickly. But in a suspense novel, the bad guy is very visible. A great villain isn’t someone who twirls a handlebar moustache and ties damsels to railway tracks. The ultimate antagonists are smart and motivated. They have to be to have created this spectacular hook that’s going to keep readers riveted to their La-Z-Boys for the length of a book. Flesh this person out. Explore the antagonist’s motivations and character. Give the reader reasons why the antagonist is who he is. The reader has to believe in and fear this person. The villain has to be a worthy opponent to our hero. Anything else won’t do.

  9. Create a really good hero. If the book has a great bad guy, then it’s going to need a great hero. This may be key to any story, but the suspense hero has to be someone the reader believes in and cares about. When the hero is in peril, the writer needs for the reader to hope that person will pull through.

    So there you have it. Suspense writing is all about creating a pressure cooker with no relief valve in sight. You have to keep turning up the heat, using multiple burners. Employ these techniques and your reader will discover more action and adventure than they ever thought possible.

Kaylin McFarren
Stories that touch the soul

So were these tips helpful? See if Kaylin McFarren followed her own advice by picking up a copy of her latest romantic suspense novel: Buried Threads

Buried Threads

Title: Buried Threads
Series: Threads Series, Book 2
Author: Kaylin McFarren
Publisher: Creative Edge Publishing LLC
Description: Rachel and Chase are back in Buried Threads, the sequel to Kaylin McFarren’s Severed Threads, and this time not only has their romance heated up but so has the danger when they are hired to find ancient Japanese Samurai swords under the sea.

Troutdale, OR—A desperate race to save Japan from a monk’s terrifying prophecy and find three ancient Samurai swords buried in the ocean’s depths sends two romantically involved treasure hunters on the quest of a lifetime in Kaylin McFarren’s Buried Threads (ISBN 9781492120469, Creative Edge Publishing LLC 2013).

Rachel Lyons and Chase Cohen, successful partners in a treasure-hunting business, are trying to sort out their feelings for one another. But neither expects the turn their business or relationship will take when they are hired to find three ancient samurai swords in the Sea of Japan.

The adventure begins when Shinzo, a clairvoyant Buddhist monk, experiences a frightening vision of Japan being completely destroyed by an enormous earthquake. To prevent the earthquake from happening, he hires Rachel and Chase to recover three stolen samurai swords belonging to a cursed prince, and they must accomplish this within four days before the next blue moon appears and the prophecy comes true.

Matters do not get easier when Chase withholds some information from Rachel that she has to find out for herself the hard way. Her partner is also completely in love with her, but Rachel’s insecurities and fear of abandonment create a wall between them. As chaos ensues and the couple find themselves on a journey through shark-infested waters, creepy caves, and haunted hidden tombs, they must learn to trust one another. And when dangerous Yakuza gang members threaten them, their love will be tested like never before.

Full of erotic suspense and wild adventures, Buried Threads, is a book readers are finding themselves buried in until the last page. Kirkus Reviews proclaims that the Threads series has “plenty at stake, erotic chemistry, dastardly villains, a lost relic, an unusual setting and a touch of the supernatural.... The full package of thrills and romance.” Suzanne Gattis of the Pacific Book Review admits, “I couldn’t put the book down because I constantly wanted to know what was going to happen next. Many of the ups and downs were not obvious, and I enjoyed the surprise as each revelation was made.” Lee Gooden of ForeWord Clarion reviews puts McFarren in good company with other popular authors, declaring, “combines the action and adventure found in a Clive Cussler novel, the plotting and romance of Danielle Steel’s books, and the erotic energy and supernatural elements of a work by Shayla Black.” And Lauren Calder of “Affaire de Coeur magazine” encourages readers to, “Dive right in; the water is full of danger, intrigue, and passion. This treasure-hunting jewel of a story will hold the reader captive to the very last page.”

Purchase the book: - Kindle / Paperback

Author’s Bio:

Although Kaylin wasn't born with a pen in hand like so many of her talented fellow authors, she has been actively involved in both business and personal writing projects for many years. As the director of a fine art gallery, she assisted in furthering the careers of numerous visual artists who under her guidance gained recognition through promotional opportunities and in national publications. Eager to spread her own creative wings, she has since steered her energy toward writing novels. As a result, she has earned more than a dozen literary awards and was a 2008 finalist in the prestigious RWA® Golden Heart contest.

Kaylin is a member of RWA, Rose City Romance Writers, and Willamette Writers. She received her AA in Literature at Highline Community College, which originally sparked her passion for writing. In her free time, she also enjoys giving back to the community through participation and support of various charitable and educational organizations in the Pacific Northwest.

Website / Twitter / Facebook / Book Trailer

Kindle Fire #Giveaway

January Kindle   Win a Kindle Fire HDX, Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash ($229 value)   This is a joint AUTHOR & BLOGGER GIVEAWAY EVENT! Bloggers & Authors have joined together and each chipped in a little money towards a Kindle Fire HDX 7".
The winner will have the option of receiving a 7" Kindle Fire HDX (US Only - $229 Value)
  Or $229 Gift Card (International)
  Or $229 in Paypal Cash (International)
      January Sponsors
  1. I Am A Reader, Not A Writer
  2. Feed Your Reader
  3. The (Mis)Adventures of a Twenty-Something Year Old Girl
  4. Author Kimber Leigh Wheaton
  5. Author Inger Iversen
  7. Author Carol Davis Luce
  8. The Reporter and the Girl
  9. Author David Pandolfe
  10. Bella Street Writes
  11. Author Bonnie Blythe
  12. Author Elizabeth Seckman
  13. MyLadyWeb: Women's History and Women Authors
  14. Just One More Chapter
  15. Author Donna Fasano
  16. Author Lia Fairchild
  17. Author Linda S. Prather
  18. Author Heather McCoubrey
  19. Author M.A. Comley
  20. Jessica Loves Books
  21. Fae Books
  22. Author Cidney Swanson
  23. Lori's Reading Corner
  24. Author Jennifer Laurens
  25. Allergic to Life
  26. ~Owl Always Be Reading
  27. Author J.L. Weil
  28. Buku-Buku Didi
  29. Barb's Wire - eBooks & More
  30. Author Jennifer Gilby Roberts
  31. Another Head Full of Fantasy
  32. Fairiechick's Fantasy Book Reader
  33. Author Kim Cresswell
  34. Mother Daughter Book Reviews
  35. Buried Under Romance
  36. Jenna Does Books
  37. Laurie Here
  38. The Bunny's Review
  39. Bea's Book Nook
  40. Fabulously Girly Book Blog
  41. The Loopy Librarian
  42. Bound4Escape
  43. Michael SciFan
  44. Chapter by Chapter
  45. Author Helen Smith
  46. Button-the-Push Books and Giveaways
  47. Author S.M. Blooding
  48. Back Off My Books
  49. Author Brinda Berry
  50. Author Christie Anderson
  51. Author Leslie A. Susskind
  52. More Than A Review
  53. Author Heather Gray
  54. Paige Ryan
  55. Fire and Ice
  56. Author Bryna Butler
Sign up to sponsor the next Kindle Fire Giveaway:   Giveaway Details 1 winner will receive their choice of an all new Kindle Fire 7" HDX (US Only - $229 value), $229 Amazon Gift Card or $229 in Paypal Cash (International). There is a second separate giveaway for bloggers who post this giveaway on their blog. See details in the rafflecopter on how to enter to win the 2nd Kindle Fire HDX 7". Ends 2/9/14 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. 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, Not A Writer and sponsored by the participating authors & bloggers. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

#BookExcerpt: Scattered Links by Michelle Weidenbenner #PromoBookTours

Scattered Links 1

Scattered Links 2
Title: Scattered Links
Author: Michelle Weidenbenner
Description: Scattered Links is a novel that pulls its characters from the gutters and, in the end, celebrates the tenacity of the human spirit.

Thirteen-year-old Oksana lives on the streets of Russia with her pregnant mama and abusive aunt—both prostitutes. When Mama swells into labor, Oksana makes a decision to save herself from abandonment, a decision that torments her forever. When her plan fails and her aunt dumps her in an orphanage, she never has the chance to say goodbye to her mama or tell her the secret that haunts her.

Scattered Links is a story of family and the consequences that come from never learning how to love, of a girl’s inability to bond with her adopted family and the frustrations that follow.

How can a child understand the mechanics of forming a healthy relationship when she never had a mother who answered her cries, held her when she was frightened, fed her when she was hungry, or loved her unconditionally?

Only when the child meets a rescued abused horse, and recognizes the pain in his eyes, does she begin to trust again.


Scattered Links, (initially titled Love is Just a Word), was the winner of the 2013 Aspiring Writers Competition, sponsored by Write on Con and The Reading Room. Scattered Links was intended to show a glimpse into the life of a child with RAD, reactive attachment disorder, so prevalent in children who never had unconditional love in infancy.

This novel was inspired by Michelle’s journey to Russia to adopt her orphan daughter. Upon seeing the neglect of orphanage children and learning of the effects of RAD in post-institutionalized children, Michelle researched this disorder, committed to giving her daughter the best chance at a healthy life. Sadly, many parents can’t cope with the behavior from kids with RAD and re-home their children like pets.

Excerpt: My stomach tumbles. “Where are you going?” I panic. My heart gives loud thumps in my chest.

“I have other plans right now. You’ll have to manage. When her pains get worse, give her more vodka. It’s on the table.” She changes into a low-cut blouse and a tight skirt. I can see the dimples in her butt cheeks through the thin fabric. When she slips on her coat, my heartbeat quickens. I glance at Mama. She has deep wrinkles in her forehead and a line of perspiration above her lip.

I follow Ludmila. The room spins. “I don’t know what to do.”

“Didn’t you help Sasha deliver babies?”

“Yes, but that was different. I only watched. I never did it alone.” The air in my chest thins. I can’t breathe. What if the baby comes? I don’t have any supplies.

”I’ll only be gone a short while. Labor takes hours. She probably won’t be totally ready until later tonight, and I’ll be back by then.” Her hand is on the doorknob.

A warm wave of heat surges through my body. I’m sweating and my mouth is dry. I pull her arm toward the room, reeling her around. “Mama would never leave you like this!”

She yanks her arm out of my hold. “You don’t understand. We need the money. She’ll be fine until I return. I have to go.” The door slams.

She lies. It’s not the money she wants. It’s the men. She wishes she were as beautiful as Mama, always trying to win the men’s approval. Oh, how I wish I could find a way to get her out of our lives, for Mama to get a good job.

Buy on Kindle | Paperback

About the author:

Michelle grew up in the burbs of Detroit with five brothers. No sisters. Each time her mom brought the boy bundle home from the hospital Michelle cried, certain her mom liked boys better than girls. But when her brothers pitched in with the cooking, cleaning, and babysitting—without drama, Michelle discovered having brothers wasn’t so bad. They even taught her how to take direct criticism without flinching, which might come in handy with book reviews.

Michelle blogs at Random Writing Rants where she teaches and encourages writers how to get published.

Follow Michelle:

Blog link:

Random Writing Rants

Teaching adults and teens how to get published

Website link:
Facebook link:
Twitter link: @MWeidenbenner1
Goodreads link:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This book tour is brought to you by

#DreamWorks Pictures’ NEED FOR SPEED featurette

Need for speed 1

Need For Speed - Driving School...Again

Need for speed 2

Like NEED FOR SPEED on Facebook:

Follow NEED FOR SPEED on Twitter: @NeedforSpeed

Follow NEED FOR SPEED on Tumblr:

Follow NEED FOR SPEED on Instagram: @NeedForSpeed

Visit the website:

NEED FOR SPEED races into theatres everywhere on March 14th!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

#BookReview: Ember by Liz Schulte #PromoBookTours

Ember Reviews

Title: Ember
Series: The Minn Trilogy, Book 1
Author: Liz Schulte
Description: Holden told Olivia it was only a matter of time before Hell came for them. After all, one doesn’t just walk away from the life he lived unscathed, but the longer Hell waited, the more Olivia let down her guard. She believed maybe happily ever after was possible—he knew it wasn’t.

But when Baker shows up beaten and bloody on their doorstep with a message, all hope evaporates. The jinn make Holden an offer he can’t refuse: convince Olivia to free them all and the jinn will fight Hell alongside them. However, if their past has proved anything, it’s that the jinn cannot be trusted. When Olivia starts hearing a voice that no one can identify and Baker isn’t acting like himself, he is forced to make a decision.

With Heaven staying hands off, Holden considers accepting the jinn’s offer behind Olivia’s back. One thing is clear, with their lives and the lives all those they hold dear at stake, something has to be done. If it were as easy as Holden going back to the jinn, he would do it in a heartbeat, but Hell wants more than his soul this time—they want Olivia’s too.

Review: When the Guardian Trilogy ended, I wanted more. It didn't feel like Olivia and Holden were finished telling their story. Now I know why. This book is the start of a new trilogy where we will learn more about Holden and the rest of the Jinn and where Olivia will have to learn how to be herself and the angel hiding inside of her. In this book, we learn that Hell is ready to try to take control of both of them or destroy them. Having a free fallen angel roaming the world is bad for Hell's agenda. Demons are looking for a weapon that will destroy Olivia. By destroying her, they will be able to get Holden's soul back for Hell. Jinn are slaves to Hell and having a free jinni is even worse than having a free angel. To top off the problems with Hell, Baker is dating Holden's only living relative, a human named Maggie. How will Baker tell Holden that he's been seeing her without getting himself killed? How will he be able to keep her from getting mixed up in everything going on with the Abyss? Being a human means she knows nothing about Jinn, angels, and whatever Baker really is. Can he bring her into their supernatural world without her going insane? The real question though is does he even want to?

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and am really looking forward to finding out where everything is going to go. We learn even more about each of these characters, including the Sehkmet Femi. I really like Femi, as do a lot of people. I hope that eventually she gets her own book. I would love to learn about how she grew up to become a bounty hunter. Anyway...If you like supernatural books that don't revolve around one type of being, this is definitely for you, but I would definitely read The Guardian Trilogy first (Secrets, Choices, and Consequences).

My Rating (Out of 5): Rose Icon 1 Rose Icon 2 Rose Icon 3 Rose Icon 4 Rose Icon 5
Purchase the book: -Kindle
Smashwords - Multiple digital formats

About Author Liz Schulte

Many authors claim to have known their calling from a young age. Liz Schulte, however, didn’t always want to be an author. In fact, she had no clue. Liz wanted to be a veterinarian, then she wanted to be a lawyer, then she wanted to be a criminal profiler. In a valiant effort to keep from becoming Walter Mitty, Liz put pen to paper and began writing her first novel. It was at that moment she realized this is what she was meant to do. As a scribe she could be all of those things and so much more.

When Liz isn’t writing or on social networks she is inflicting movie quotes and trivia on people, reading, traveling, and hanging out with friends and family. Liz is a Midwest girl through and through, though she would be perfectly happy never having to shovel her driveway again. She has a love for all things spooky, supernatural, and snarky. Her favorite authors range from Edgar Allen Poe to Joseph Heller to Jane Austen to Jim Butcher and everything in between.

Follow Liz Schulte:
Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads

This book tour is brought to you by

#CoverReveal: Without You by Julie Prestsater #ReleaseDayDiva

Without You
When two people connect, they can make beautiful music together. But what happens when music is the thing that tears them apart?

Evan James had it all. Drop-dead sexy, brilliantly talented musician, a skyrocketing career and his high school sweetheart by his side. When he’s offered a golden opportunity to go on tour, he never imagined she wouldn’t go with him. Without her, he found his dream meant nothing. Three years later, bereft and alone, Evan stops at an open mic night and spots someone sitting in the audience, the beautiful face of a woman he’d never forget...Maddy, his one true love.

Madison Grey had only ever loved one man. When Evan broke her heart she had no choice but to move on with her life, start a career of her own, and she even finds a new love. Still, thoughts of Evan were never put to rest. And on one fateful night, she unexpectedly hears him pour his heart out into a new song. A song about broken hearts, lost love, and second chances. A song about her.

With the help of their scheming friends, Maddy and Evan are thrown into each other’s lives once more. While learning to love and trust again, there is only one thing left on both of their minds... Is life better with or without you?
Without You 2

About Julie:

Without You 3
Julie is a high school teacher by day, and a writer by night. She writes both young adult and adult romances. When she's not writing, she can be found out and about with her family, reading, and watching football. As a reading intervention teacher, she prides herself on matching her students with great books to encourage them to become life-long readers.

Julie has written five young adult books which are all available now:
The Double Threat Series
-So I'm A Double Threat
-Double Threat My Bleep
-Double Time
-Double Threats Forever
You Act So White
Julie has also written three adult romance novels:
More Than A Friend Request
Against The Wall
-Between The Sheets (Against The Wall #2)
-Straddling The Edge (Against The Wall #3 coming April 29, 2013)
-Playing Chase (Against The Wall #4 coming summer 2013)

Stalker links:

Don't forget to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway to win 1 of 5 $5 Amazon cards!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Release Day Diva

Brought to you by the Release Day Diva


Monday, January 27, 2014

#CoverReveal: Blue Rose by Sarah Daltry #ReleaseDayDiva

Blue Rose

Book Info:
Title: Blue Rose, a Flowering novel
Author: Sarah Daltry
Release Date: 2/1/2014
Publisher: SDE Press
Cover Design: Shoutlines Design

“Four. My life has been shaped by four people. Four men, to be more specific. My father, my stepfather, my best friend, and my boyfriend. The first two shaped it in horrible ways, but what I am, who I am, is all because of four men.” 

Alana Reardon has secrets. Some of them are too dark to tell, but everyone already thinks they know anyhow. At 20, she takes too many pills, hides the parts of her that she hates, and willingly becomes the person that they think she is. A slut. A whore. Trash.

There have only been two guys who ever saw Alana as more: Jack, the guy she can’t get over, and Dave, the one who never got over her.

With the help of therapy, facing her past, and the inevitable ways that life changes without your permission, can Alana learn to stop blaming herself? Can she allow love into her life? Is she ready to move on?

Warning: This book deals with topics of abuse and may trigger reactions in people who have experienced those things in their own lives. 

Buy Links:

Coming Soon

About The Author:

Sarah Daltry writes about the regular people who populate our lives. She's written works in various genres - romance, erotica, fantasy, horror. Genre isn't as important as telling a story about people and how their lives unfold. Sarah tends to focus on YA/NA characters but she's been known to shake it up. Most of her stories are about relationships - romantic, familial, friendly - because love and empathy are the foundation of life. It doesn't matter if the story is set in contemporary NY, historical Britain, or a fantasy world in the future - human beings are most interesting in the ways they interact with others. This is the principle behind all of Sarah's stories. 

Sarah has spent most of her life in school, from her BA and MA in English and writing to teaching both at the high school and college level. She also loves studying art history and really anything because learning is fun.

When Sarah isn't writing, she tends to waste a lot of time checking Facebook for pictures of cats, shooting virtual zombies, and simply staring out the window.

Author Social Media Links:


Later that day, at lunch, I had just found a seat by the window when he sat across from me. I was used to sitting alone. He didn’t say anything, and he had nothing to eat. He looked up at me, though, after a few minutes, and his eyes did it again. I hated my body, hated the way I looked, hated that somehow I owed my body and my looks to everyone else. But when Jack looked at me, I wanted to let someone touch me. I wanted him to hold me. He felt like safety.
It didn’t even make sense. He was just a broken kid, like me. He always wore the same threadbare hoodie. Most days, it covered his head. He was cute, but awkward. His hair was too long and usually greasy. His Chucks were a little too big, so they looked a little like clown shoes. Yet those gorgeous eyes were all I cared about. I hadn’t considered guys at all. I didn’t find them attractive, and I certainly couldn’t see the appeal of sex or of intimacy. With Jack, though, the thought of him near me didn’t make me nauseous.
“Do you want my orange?” I asked him.
“Are you sure?”
It wasn’t a groundbreaking question. But it was how I knew that what I naturally felt for Jack was right. Because no one had ever asked me that. No one had asked if I minded, if I was sure, if something was okay. They just took things.
He took it and I handed him my knife. It was flimsy plastic and wouldn’t even pierce the rind, so I took the orange back and peeled it with my fingernails. Jack just watched me and, when I handed him the orange, now peeled, he smiled. His upper lip curled more than it should have and he looked silly, smiling at an orange. But he drew the same smile from me.
“Thank you,” he said, and he pulled two slices free from the whole and handed them back to me. I didn’t eat them right away. I just watched him eat his part. He was messy and he ended up covering himself in the juices. He unzipped his hoodie after the orange squirted down the front. Underneath, he was wearing a washed out blue T-shirt with a train on it. He looked ten.
“Nice shirt,” I teased.
He looked down. “I live with my grandmother. She has no concept of clothes.”
“It’s cute.”
He smiled again and it was less awkward this time. “Do you live with your grandmother, too?”
I was wearing a huge black sweater over baggy black pants. “No. I just… I don’t like people looking at me.”
“Yeah. I get that.”
He didn’t tell me that I was too pretty to dress the way I did; he didn’t say my body was too good to hide. He just went back to eating his orange, letting the juice spill all over the train shirt. We were fourteen, but I already knew Jack would always be the only thing that mattered in my future.


Embedded Code: <iframe width="853" height="480" src="//" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>


#Disney's Maleficent Song Released during the Grammies

Disney Picture

Maleficent 2
Reimagining of the Classic Disney Tune “Once Upon a Dream”
Offered as a Free Download on Google Play™

Burbank, Calif. (January 26, 2014)
– A never-before-heard Lana Del Rey rendition of “Once Upon a Dream” was unveiled as part of a 90-second sneak peek of Disney’s “Maleficent” during the 56th Annual Grammy Awards® on Sunday, January 26. “Maleficent” releases in U.S. theaters on May 30, 2014.

Award-winning, American singer-songwriter Lana Del Rey has recorded a unique reimagining of the renowned fairy-tale tune from Disney’s classic animated film “Sleeping Beauty,” which will feature in the end credits of the upcoming Disney film.


Lana Del Rey’s “Once Upon a Dream” is free for a limited time, only on Google Play, Google’s online store offering digital music, movies, books, games and more. The song was made available as a free download today and will be available exclusively on Google Play through Monday, February 3rd [].

“Maleficent” explores the untold story of Disney’s most iconic villain from the classic “Sleeping Beauty" and the elements of her betrayal that ultimately turn her pure heart to stone. Driven by revenge and a fierce desire to protect the moors over which she presides, Maleficent cruelly places an irrevocable curse upon the human king’s newborn infant Aurora. As the child grows, Aurora is caught in the middle of the seething conflict between the forest kingdom she has grown to love and the human kingdom that holds her legacy. Maleficent realizes that Aurora may hold the key to peace in the land and is forced to take drastic actions that will change both worlds forever.

The film stars Angelina Jolie as Maleficent, Sharlto Copley, Elle Fanning, Sam Riley, Imelda Staunton, Juno Temple and Lesley Manville.

Maleficent 3
“Maleficent” is produced by Joe Roth and directed by Robert Stromberg, with Angelina Jolie, Don Hahn, Palak Patel, Matt Smith and Sarah Bradshaw serving as executive producers. Linda Woolverton wrote the screenplay. “Maleficent” opens in theaters on May 30, 2014.

For more information, check out, like us on Facebook: and use the official hashtag #Maleficent.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

#FreeBloggerOpp: Spring into Cash Giveaway Signups!

Spring into Cash

Spring Into Cash Event

Organized by: Mom Powered Media

Grand Prize: $1,000 Visa Gift Card

Event dates: 3/20 – 4/10

Open to all bloggers with 2,500 facebook fans or more.


#BookReview: Burden of Blood by Wenona Hulsey

Burden of Blood

Title: Burden of Blood
Series: The Blood Burden Series, Book 1
Author: Wenona Hulsey
Publisher: Wenona Hulsey
Desription: A police officer in a sleepy county town..content in her denial.

She can hide her secret for only so long before an ancient grudge and the power hidden inside her burst to life.

Dance with fierce warriors and Gothic fairies as southern tradition collides with Irish folklore. Nicole learns about love, heartbreak and The Burden Of Blood.

Review: It took me a little bit to really get into this book, but honestly I don't know that it had anything to do with the book being that I have a three week old. I expected to story be an obvious continuation of the prequal Blood Awakening, but it takes place a few years later. You get most of the information from Blood Awakening spread through out the story. You really don't have to read them in order to understand what is going on. That said, this one has our main character Nicole as a police officer. She has the ability to hear when people are plotting to do bad things which serves to be very handy in tracking down criminals. She has to fabricate a few stories to explain how she knew where the criminals were and when they would be committing the deeds, but otherwise life is good. Nicole has secluded herself from the dating game and really doesn't like to go out partying with her friend Kat any more. She unfortunately can't turn off her ability and drinking has the effect of making people think and do things less than honorable. Nicole, being the honorable police officer, feels the need to stop the actions of others every time she hears them which makes having a good time at a club or with a man rather difficult. There's only one man that she has trouble controlling her feelings, her partner Luke. But Luke is more than he appears. It takes Nicole a while, but she learns that Luke is one of the few guys out there that she actually can trust with her secret, actually her life depends on it.

I really enjoyed this book. I loved the character development and how the plot played out. I would definitely recommend this to people who like supernatural or urban fantasy lovers. The only complaint I have is that when Nicole discovers what she is, it felt a little abrupt. Of course that fit into the plot exactly as it should, but it was rather shocking to me to discover what she really is. Other than that, a great story!

Purchase the book: - Kindle / Paperback
Barnes and Noble - Paperback and Nook Smashwords - Multiple Digital formats
My Rating (Out of 5): Rose Icon 1 Rose Icon 2 Rose Icon 3 Rose Icon 4

About the Author:
Wenona Hulsey

Author Wenona Hulsey is a lover of all things written. When she was a child, you could find her reading anything from Edger Allen Poe to the back of cereal boxes. Today you will find her with an ebook reader glued to her hands except for the times when she is writing or spending time with her family.

Website / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads

Friday, January 24, 2014

#BookExcerpt: Dragon Defender by J.A. Blackburn

Dragon Defender 2
Title: Dragon Defender
Series: Dragon Defense League, Book 1
Author: J.A. Blackburn
Publisher: Pip & Grey
Description: For over a thousand years dragons have existed in secret . . .

Peter Clark can build a robot from scratch and pick a lock in two minutes or less. But he can't figure out why his mother left or why his grandma refuses to talk about her. When Uncle Dominick shows up on Peter's twelfth birthday with a letter that hints at answers and an incredible story about dragons, Peter follows him, determined to find out the truth about his mother's disappearance.

What he finds is a reality far different from what he ever could have imagined - where dragons live in hiding, hunted by poachers for their magical parts, and a small group of men and women work tirelessly to protect them. These are the Dragon Defenders. Peter's uncle is one. So was his mother. Now it's Peter's turn.

Dominick sat silent for a minute and then said, “Most people, they just see what they expect to see. Then you’ve got the fact that dragons are skilled at blending into their environment, and they’re smarter than other animals . . . smarter than humans, even. If a dragon doesn’t want to be seen, you won’t see him. End of story.”

Peter sat back in his chair and folded his arms across his chest. “So how did you see one, then?” he asked.

Dominick laughed. “Good question. That’s part of what I’ll teach you.” He reached into his pocket and pulled out something, and then slid it across the table to Peter.

“Maybe this will help,” he said. “It’s a dragon scale.”

Peter looked down. The dragon scale—if that’s what it really was—was rectangular and concave, with rounded edges and a ridge that ran down the center. It was silvery blue with an acrylic-like sheen.

“It’s blue,” Peter said.

“It’s from a Tatzelworm,” said Dominick.

“Different species have different coloring. The Tatzelworm is steel blue. Helps ’em blend into the gray rocky landscape where they live.”

Peter tapped the scale with his fingernail. It didn’t look like anything he’d ever seen before. He slid it back across the table to Dominick.

“Okay, so let’s say dragons are real,” he said. “What does that have to do with us?” Dominick took the scale and flipped it between his thumb and index finger. “Well,” he said, “like I said before, our family is unique . . . our destiny is linked with dragons.”

He set the dragon scale on the table and leaned forward. “We call ourselves the Dragon Defense League.”

“DDL,” Peter whispered.

Dominick nodded. “Right. Our mission is to protect dragons.”

“Hold on a minute,” Peter said. “Protect dragons? Don’t you mean fight them?”

“No, I mean protect them.”

Peter’s eyebrows shot up.

“Dragons aren’t like you think they are,” Dominick went on. “They’re not bad. They’ve been given a bad rap . . . made out to be the villains in all the legends and stories. But the truth is, it’s people who’ve treated dragons badly.”

“We’ve treated dragons badly.”

Purchase the book: - Kindle / Paperback

Tour Stops:
January 6 - Mother Daughter Book Reviews (Launch & Review)
January 6 - Victoria Simcox (Interview)
January 7 - The Dragyn's Lair (Dual Reviews)
January 7 - Cherry Mischievous (Guest Post)
January 8 - Reading and Sharing (Book Review)
January 9 - Brooke Blogs (Review)
January 9 - Carpinello's Writing Pages (Author Interview)
January 10 - Bound 4 Escape (Review)
January 11 - Deal Sharing Aunt (Review)
January 12 - Mythical Books (Guest Post)
January 12 - Book Room Reviews (Review)
January 13 - The Hippie Bookworm (Review)
January 13 - Books Direct (Author Interview)
January 14 - BeachBoundBooks (Review)
January 15 - A Year of Jubilee Reviews (Review)
January 16 - Reviews By Karen (Review)
January 16 - Stitch Says (Author Interview)
January 17 - We are the Noisy DinoFamily (Review)
January 17 - Musings by Jay Faulkner (Guest Post)
January 18 - Kay LaLone I Love Books (Review)
January 19 - Lakshmi Gosyne (Guest Post & Review)
January 20 - Sher A. Hart: Written Art (Review)
January 20 - WS Momma Readers Nook (Guest Post/Excerpt)
January 21 - Mel's Shelves (Review)
January 22 - Cassandra Lost in Books (Review)
January 22 - Word Magic: Articles & Tips for Authors (Review)
January 23 - Tales of a Bookworm (Review)
January 24 - Dawn's Disaster (Review)
January 24 - Identity Discovery (Guest Post)
January 25 - Jemima Pett, Princelings Author (Review)
January 26 - When I Grow Up I Wanna Write a Kids Book (Review)
January 26 - Heart of a Philanthropist (Review)

This book tour is brought to you by Mother Daughter Book Reviews

#CoverReveal: My Soul for You by Airicka Pheonix #ReleaseDayDiva

My Soul for You 1
My Soul For You 2
Title: My Soul For you
Author: Airicka Phoenix
Publisher: Fire & Ice Publishing
Release Day: March 7, 2014
Genre: New Adult Contemporary, Thriller with strong elements of Romance
Warnings: Language and sexual content
Formats: eBook & Paperback
Buying Locations: To Come Soon
Author Bio:
My soul for you 3Best-Selling author Airicka Phoenix lives in rainy British Columbia with her beautiful family. When she's not pounding away at the keyboard, she can be found reading, shining her collection of daggers or chilling with her kids.

She is the author of the Touch SagaThe Sons of Judgment SagaThe Lost Girl Series, and Games of Fire. Airicka also writes adult paranormal & contemporary romance under her alter ego, Morgana Phoenix. Her first novel, Capture Me, will be out 2014. For more about Airicka, visit her website at:
Stalker Links:
Design Page: Phoenix Page:
My soul for you 4