Saturday, July 30, 2016

Cover Reveal: An Angel's Song (Earthbound 4) by Sharon Saracino


An Angel's Song
(Earthbound 4)
by Sharon Saracino


Can an Earthbound Angel overcome Djinn, shattered trust, and his own demons to regain the woman he loved--and lost?

Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Release Date: TBA
Cover Artist: Debbie Taylor, DCA Graphics

After ten years of separation, Tessa and Alec are called to the deathbed of Tessa’s father and tasked with solving a mystery that points to WWII, the Nazi rĂ©gime, and the shadowy world of the Djinn. Although their passion still burns, forgiveness requires more than desire.

 Alec, the Riddle King to the Defensori, is used to shutting out the world and working on his puzzles alone. But this time, he can’t shut Tessa out. This time, he needs his estranged wife's help. Tessa and her gift hold the key, and failure could cost her sanity…or her life.

 Insecurity, immaturity, and misunderstanding drove them apart. Can they rebuild their shattered trust and work together to rescue a captive Djinni, stay one step ahead of the servants of the Fallen, and save their marriage along with Tessa's life?


Excerpt:

     “Tessa…” he stepped toward her and held out a hand.
     “Don’t you touch me,” she warned, taking a quick step back, eyeing him warily.
     Okay, so maybe he’d been an oblivious jackass. Hardly the first time, but maybe it showed progress if he’d noticed without someone else pointing it out?
     “Look, I could have warned you, but frankly it just never occurred to me. You’ve had a long night, and you’re tired and hurting. I get it. I’m not happy about this, but believe it or not, I really am trying to help. I’m not the bad guy here.”
     “Meaning I am?” She spat, stepping right up toe to toe, crossing her arms over her chest, and craning her neck to look directly into his face. “I fly thousands of miles, watch my father die, and then, before I can even process what that means, I am grabbed by you, of all people, and spirited off against my will without so much as a by-your-leave. And you have the audacity to stand there and tell me you’re not happy about this?”
     Alec decided he definitely preferred angry Tessa. Her eyes deepened to the swirling blue of an angry sea and her chest heaved, straining the buttons of the wrinkled white blouse and thrusting her high breasts against the thin fabric. With her bright eyes snapping, red-gold curls tumbling over her shoulders, and her cheeks hot and flushed, pissed or not, she was freakin’ magnificent.


About the Author  
Award winning author, Sharon Saracino, was born and raised in beautiful Northeastern Pennsylvania. Always the girl with her nose in a book, and frequently announced that someday she was going to write a one. One milestone birthday (we won't discuss which one!) she decided someday would be here and gone if she didn't get her butt in gear.  She plans to win the lottery just as soon as she remembers to purchase a ticket,  fantasizes about moving to Italy, brews limoncello, and believes there's always magic to be found if you only take the time to look for it!
 



 
All roads lead to happily ever after, some just have a few unexpected turns!
Where to find Sharon Saracino

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Cover Reveal: Beast of All, A Carus Novel

Cover Reveal


Beast of All
A Carus Novel, Book 5


“Two months ago my world collapsed and the beast reigned. Seven weeks ago the SRD captured me. Nine days ago, they injected me with something vile. Today, I break free. And I’ll make them pay.”

Badass Shifter Andy McNeilly wakes up from a horrible nightmare, only to discover it wasn’t a dream, and she’s no longer quite so badass. Chemically curbed, Andy has lost touch with her feras and beast when she needs them most. Can she regain control of her supernatural abilities in time to reap retribution from her enemies, or will she fall as fodder in a power play for control of Vancouver’s seedy underworld?

Release Date: October 19, 2016

Cover Art by Debbie Taylor from DCA Graphics



Author Website: http://www.jcmckenzie.ca


EXCERPT:
No feras. No beast. Whatever they shot me with blocked my communication with the animals. Did it prevent shifting as well? I squeezed my eyes shut and tried to call a form and change. Only a headache answered. Dread flittered across my skin. Was this permanent?
As the Carus, the genetic throwback to the first demi-god progeny of the beast goddess, I caged a beast with rage and power rivaled by few, and possessed more than one animal familiar to shift into.
At least, I did until the SRD shot me full of chemicals. Would I ever regain my abilities? Hear the indignant screech of the peregrine falcon? Or the lusty purr of the mountain lion? Or soulful howl of the wolf?
My heart hammered, punching bone. A buzzing sensation filled my head. The “wrongness” of my condition grated against my nerves, slicing them into slivers like a planer shucking off wood shavings.
Something in my abdomen swelled, as if the beast pushed against whatever barrier caged and hid her from me.
I’ll get you out, I told her, not knowing if she could hear. We’ll make them pay.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Book Review: Life on the Edge by JohnJoe McFadden and Jim Al-Khalili


The world is very large, but also very small. Authors McFadden and Al-Khalili take a look at quantum physics to see how things on an atomic and subatomic level can have a surprising effect on basic biology. As they state, “All this diversity in living matter, with its multitudinous forms and endless variety of functions, is made up from pretty much the same atoms.”  The book draws interesting connections between such esoteric topic such as particle duality and how it can be involved in ordinary chemical reaction. From there it’s on to biology and such far ranging topics as bird migration, biology’s connection to thermodynamics, and quantum mechanics role in the action of a certain enzymes.  

The connection between quantum mechanics and genetics is fascinating. Our very genetic code is written in quantum particles. “Quantum genes encode the classical structure of every microbe, plant and animal that has ever lived.” Life on earth would never have evolved without a little tiny push on the subatomic level.


By no means is this book is light reading. While well-written, a person definitely needs, at the very least, a basic understanding of physics and biology. I would recommend it as a good companion volume for any college student majoring in those subjects. As for the science laymen, if phrases such as quantum mechanics, chromosomes, DNA, or Schrodinger’s cat don’t leave you all tingly pass this book by. It’s not for you.

I receive this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for a review.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Is there life after Kindle Scout. Of course, there is.

Several folks have asked about Rimrider since it wasn't picked up for Kindle Scout. Since I didn't expect a contract, I'd already begun the process of self-publishing. I plan to release the first two books simultaneously and am in the final editing of book 2, Outlaw Jane. I hope to have them out before summer's end.

Was I disappointed I didn't get the contract? No. I didn’t expect it and considered this more of a learning experience. Would I do it again? No. It took a huge amount of time and effort. I have only a very minimal advertising budget. A hefty one is probably needed to get the word out along with the ability to really work social media. I considered if there was anything I could have done differently given the time and money constraints and concluded there wasn’t. This isn’t the platform for me.


If you have a book ready, should you try it? Sure, why not? Signing up for it is free, but it will take a lot of time and you have to either really know how to work social media or have the money to hire someone who does. 

Monday, July 11, 2016

Ebook Sale for Second Chance City

99 Cent Sale for Second Chance City

Comic books can be the death of you



Police officer Nate Hammond led a well-ordered life until a chance meeting with a girl from his past drags him into an extraordinary adventure.

Libby Parish never intended to visit her hometown again. Is the strange obsession to return related to a mysterious comic book? Or someone she left behind?

Sucked into a deadly comic book universe Nate and Libby find themselves in Second Chance City, home of the Refractor and a league of murderous adversaries. Can a knowledge of comic books, a half-hearted super-hero, misunderstood villains, science gone horribly awry, and a mysterious flashlight help them find a way home or will their second chance at happily-ever-after only end in in death?

Excerpt
The building was silent with the exception of a faint hum now emanating from the glow in the corner. Nate moved cautiously forward, shining the flashlight. “Debolt?” No one answered. “We’ll check the rest of the store…Libby?”
Libby had stepped from his side, her attention drawn elsewhere. She stood in front of the display stand filled with comic books. Her respiration sharply increased. “What is that?” she said. The eerie glow came directly from one of the books.
            Nate’s gaze widened. “I’ve no idea.” The glow began to fluctuate, pulsing with a bright green neon light.
            Libby squinted at the glare. She leaned in as if striving to discern the cover. “It’s the latest Refractor issue. Why is it doing that?” On and off, on and off, the hypnotic beat flashed.
            The light was oddly attractive. “It’s not some marketing gimmick?” Nate said.
“No way,” insisted Libby. “I’ve never seen anything like it.”
The tempo of the pulses increased, so did the hum. A little voice in Nate’s head bleated a warning. This isn’t normalYou should do something…do something…do something. His thoughts muddled with the incessant flash. The hand which had been resting on the gun, dropped to his side.
 Libby clutched the pencil light to her chest. As if drawn by an irresistible impulse, the other hand reached for the Refractor comic.
            Nate’s confusion vanished, shoved aside by a powerful protective urge. “Libby, don’t! It might be dangerous.” He grabbed her arm at the same time she touched the comic. For an instant, the world turned to green light.
           Then total blackness enveloped them. 


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Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Book Review: Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris

The perfect marriage isn’t always what it seems to be.

To the townsfolk of the quaint English village, newlyweds Grace and Jack, have a perfect marriage. Grace hangs on every one of Jack’s words. He is handsome, charming, rich, and adoringly attentive, oozing kindness on visits to her mentally disabled sister at a residential facility. Grace and Jack even live in a perfectly charming home. Of course, the neighbors have noticed Grace never seems to be out in public alone and why does that charming house have bars on the windows?

Behind Closed Doors is a contemporary suspense novel about what can happen when Mr. Right turns out to be oh-so-wrong. The tension builds slowly, but never to the edge-of-your-seat level. The book should be a chilling page-turner, but the story didn’t grip me the way I’d hoped. The main problem was Grace. Before Jack, she’s spunky and strong, lovingly tending to her sister. She has a good life with a job she loves, but when when Jack arrives all her most interesting characteristics go right out the window. She easily falls under his spell, asking no questions about his odd demands like quitting her job before the wedding. Her transformation isn’t credible. Neither is how long it takes for the final confrontation between them to take place. When Grace finally figures out Jack’s evil intentions I couldn’t help but think, conk him on the head and run, lady. End of story. (I suppose that would have made for a very short book.)

The novel is written in the first person from Grace’s point of view. I have no problem with first person narration, but in a suspense story the reader is left with three options. Grace will confront Jack and be victorious. She will confront Jack and not be victorious. The author will use a cheesy Sunset Boulevard escape and Grace will be narrating the book as a ghost. Thankfully, the third option wasn’t used, but Grace’s voice still comes across as too weak. I never made a connection to her. The ending was satisfying, but while it should have been a big surprise, it wasn’t. Any reader paying attention can see it coming. I didn’t toss the book aside. The story was interesting enough to keep reading, but somewhere in the middle I suddenly realized the only reason for me to finish was to see if my theory of the ending held up. I didn’t particularly care whether Grace escaped Jack’s clutches or not.

I received a free advanced copy from the publisher.




Monday, July 4, 2016

Book Review: Doodletopia Manga by Christopher Hart

It’s vacation time. I hoped Doodletopia Manga would be a fun book to recommend parents pack for the kids when they get bored on a car trip. Unfortunately, it’s sadly lacking and in the most surprising way.

For a book that’s supposed to teach the budding artist how to draw manga, there are precious few instructions and they all are incomplete. A page will have some wire frame sketches and then the finished project from the author. Somewhere between the two an inexperienced artist is supposed to bridge the gap, but that’s not how a book that purports to teach drawing techniques is supposed to work. It needs detailed step-by-step guidelines and there aren’t any. What the reader finds is lots of cute finished manga drawings by the author that I suppose can be used as references. If your kid is only into tracing he or she might get enjoyment out of this book, but you’ll have to shell out for tracing paper.

Doodletopia Manga includes projects such as mazes and bookmarks that could have been fun for kids. Again, with the limited instructions I don’t see a reader producing more than crude artwork, not much better than what they can probably already create. I’m puzzling over the purpose of the book because it appears to be a how-to-draw manual for people who already know how to draw.


In the end, Doodletopia Manga isn’t much better than a coloring book and there are more fun coloring books out there. Buy one of those.

I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for a review.