Friday, October 30, 2015

Friday news and reviews, #Halloween edition

Good morning, everyone. I hope y'all are well. Are ya ready for Halloween?

How about Nanowrimo? Are any of you,my readers, participating in the madness, this year? All right. i decided (despite what I said early) that I am throwing my hat in, again.

Anyway, I just wanted to share this fine review that showed up for my novelette, Bicycle Requiem:

Bicycle Requiem by Juli D. Revezzo, paranormal, zombie, pagan paranormal fiction


"'Bicycle Requiem' really took me on a ride of how one random act, however horrible you find it, can turn your life into a living nightmare.... This Novelette was a great quick read. Juli D. Revezzo created quite the creative story. I've always enjoyed her work. A great add to your tbr list." ~Denise. Read the full review at Amazon.

*Squee* Thank you, Denise!

Bicycle Requiem is available at Amazon and Smashwords

If you'd like to add this novelette to your Good Reads shelves you can do so here.

(Oh, and just another little note, for a friend. My friend Beth, who runs the fine etsy shop Beth Wodandis Designs and makes all sorts of cool pagan-themed jewelry and candles and more, is having a sale. (She's the lady who made my lovely ritual cord I showed y'all a while back. :) And some other oils and stuff that I've enjoyed.) Do go check out her blog for more details. Meanwhile, Halloween.... ready...and go! :)

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Igraine's Flight Release Party! (and a sale!)

My dear friend Jolene Dawe has a brand new book release: Igraine's Flight. Do pop by her website (Doo eet!) to check it out!

Her synopsis is as follows:

Igraine is being hunted, and it’s only a matter of time before she’s found. Enslaved and enchanted, trapped in her hellhound form by a powerful member of the Wild Hunt, Igraine has spent countless seasons leashed and trapped. When she manages to slip her master’s tether and disappear into the mortal realm, she knows time is against her. Summer is drawing to a close, and when the Hunt begins to gather to ride, she knows her master will force her to heel. If she can get enough distance between them, maybe he won’t have time to come seeking her. If she runs fast enough, far enough, maybe she’ll manage to break free.

Dog rescue and rehabilitation is hard, harrowing, often heartbreaking work, but there’s no denying that Marion is good at what she does. Her reputation for being able to help the hopeless cases is widely known throughout her county, so it’s no surprise when a local vet calls her in to help with the latest rescue. The large dog is unlike any breed Marion’s seen, but that doesn’t stop her from opening her home — and her heart — to the dog in need. Especially once her own pack readily accepts the creature.

Nothing could have prepared Marion for how her life was about to change. . .

. . . or for the naked woman suddenly in her shower.

Together, Marion and Igraine await the growing dark, counting off the days until Yule arrives, when the Wild Hunt runs free, and not even the power of Marion’s claim can keep Igraine safe. Will their commitment to one another be enough to keep Igraine free, or will she be forced to back onto the leash? Will they have found hope within each other only to lose everything?

See Jolene's site for more.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

My interviews today at…

Good day, everyone. I hope you're doing well. I have been. Editing like crazy. But, also, I have a couple interviews I wanted to let you know about. First, I'm over at Marsha A. Moore's Illusions of Intimacy, talking about my druids and their magic, in my latest Fantasy Romance, Druid Warrior's Heart. You can see that post here.

signpostAlso, I recently had a fun interview about DWH with paranormal historical romance author Mary Morgan. You can see that one here. I hope you enjoy them.

Thanks, ladies, for hosting me!

(image: "Social Media Signpost" by Stuart Miles)

For great reads, buy Juli's Books today!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Dragon Song by Tara West Bewitching Book Tour and #giveaway

Dragon Song Blitz bannerWe're pleased to have historical fantasy romance author Tara West with us today. (With dragons, after all, what's not to love? :)) Tara is offering a giveaway with this tour. Do read on for that and some glimpses into her new book!

Dragon Song

Dawn of the Dragon Queen

Book One

Tara West

Genre: historical fantasy romance

Publisher: Shifting Sands Publishing

Date of Publication: October 20, 2015

Number of pages: 250

Word Count: 65,000

Cover Artist: Renee Barratt at The Cover Counts

Dragon Song by Tara West, historical fantasy romance, dragons

Book Description:

Duncan MacQuoid, dragon-slayer, is no more. In his place is a tortured man seeking solace for his sins. One fateful night he finds a woman he believes will be his salvation. Little does he know, his love for her could be his final undoing.

Fiona Firesblood, dragon-shifter and noble queen, will stop at nothing to protect her child, even if it means she must sever the bond with her mate, Duncan MacQuoid, the one man she loves above all others, and the one man whose past could destroy them all.

Safina Firesblood, daughter of a cursed union between dragon and dragon-slayer, has grown into a young woman, a powerful dragon princess in her own right. When she’s given one chance at true love, will she risk the dragon queen’s wrath or resign herself to an eternity of sorrow?

Tara West, Dragon Song, Fantasy Romance

Dragon Song by Tara West. Fantasy, Romance, novel

Available at Amazon



About the Author:

Tara West writes books about dragons, witches, and handsome heroes while eating chocolate, lots and lots of chocolate. She's willing to share her dragons, witches and heroes. Keep your hands off her chocolate.

Tara West's young adult and new adult romances have been Kindle bestsellers. A former high school English teacher, Tara is now a full-time writer and graphic artist. She enjoys spending time with her family, interacting with her fans, and fishing the Texas coast.

https://www.facebook.com/tarawestauthor

website: www.tarawest.com

tara@tarawest.com

@TaraWestauthor

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1731936.Tara_West

Tara is offering a giveaway with this tour. Details below:

Giveaway



2 print copies

$25 Amazon GC

CLICK HERE TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY
The giveaway is now over.

Bewitching Book Tour button

Thank you for being with us, Tara! Good luck with Dragon Song!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

J.J. (James) Dibenedetto, Dream Wedding Launch

Today I am pleased to once again welcome my friend and fellow paranormal author J.J. (James) Dibenedetto to my little cyber home. He's wrapping up his popular new adult paranormal series.... with none other than a wedding and so I invited him here to tell you all about it. Take it away, James!
Dream Wedding Launch

by

J.J. (James) Dibenedetto

After nearly a million words written, it's time to conclude the Dream Series. Over nine books, we've followed Sara from a shy college student to a wife, mother and chief-of-staff at her hospital. And we've seen her wrestle with her supernatural gift - the ability to step into other people's dreams.

Sara's faced almost every kind of challenge, but in the upcoming book ten of the Dream Series, DREAM WEDDING, she's up against something every parent has to cope with: watching her children become adults and hoping she's prepared them for everything the world can throw at them.

Dream Wedding Invite - Front Dream Wedding Invite back
It ought to be a joyful time for Dr. Sara Alderson. Her daughter, Lizzie, is about to graduate college, and marry her longtime boyfriend. But the family’s happiness is shattered when a drunk driver seriously injures her teenage son in a hit-and-run accident.

Now, instead of planning her daughter’s wedding, Sara must fight to save her son’s life. And when she discovers who the drunk driver was – someone she thought was a colleague and a friend – she has to fight her desire for revenge. Because Sara knows she has the power to visit the driver’s dreams, and in those dreams, she holds the power of life and death.

Dream Wedding is the tenth and final book of the Dream Series

DREAM WEDDING will be released on October 20th, but it's available for pre-order right now at:

Amazon (Kindle or Paperback)

Smashwords

Barnes & Noble (Nook or Paperback)

Apple iBookstore

Kobo

DREAM WEDDING isn't the only Dream Series book out today. There's also DREAM FRAGMENTS - a collection of short stories filling in some of the gaps between books in the series...

SeriesTitle_Dream Fragments_V2

The novels don’t tell the whole story!

Readers of the Dream Series know that Sara and her family have a very busy life outside the pages of the ten Dream Series books, and here’s your chance to peek into it.

Twelve stories are included in this collection, and you’ll discover what happened on Sara’s final Spring Break of college; Lizzie’s first day of school; Betty and Howard’s first trip out of the country; and much more!

DREAM FRAGMENTS is also available for pre-order, and it, too, will release on October 20th:

Amazon (Kindle or Paperback)

Smashwords

Barnes & Noble (Nook or Paperback)

Apple iBookstore

All nine previous Dream Series books are available on Amazon, and the first eight novels as well as a short story are available as Audible Audiobooks, too!

Sounds great, James! Good luck with it and congrats on the finale. Folks, if you'd like to know more about James, you can check out his site at: http://www.writingdreams.net

or follow him on Facebook:

or Twitter:

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Review: Last Man on Earth starring Vincent Price-- October Frights bloghop--#‎Octoberfrights‬ #giveaway #zombies #movies

I am participating in paranormal author Clarissa Johal's October Frights Blog hop.

2015 October Frights Blog Hop, #‎Octoberfrights‬ Vincent Price, The Last Man On Earth, 1964 movie posterAs I mentioned in my last post, Richard Mattheson's book I Am Legend has been made for the big screen more than once. The 1964 movie, The Last Man on Earth, starring Vincent Price, is just one. People around the world are dying from a mysterious illness.
 Though he and his colleagues at the CDC try, they can’t find a cure for it. Some three years later, the dead have been rising from the grave to return and walk the streets as vampire-like zombies. There's only one survivor of this catastrophe: Dr. Robert Morgan. He’s lost his wife, his child, and all his friends to the plague. The entire world’s population has been wiped out…or at least he hasn’t seen any other unaffected human in three years. Society has degenerated, and Robert lights his home with generators and forages the abandoned markets during the day, to stay alive. And when not doing that, he seeks out hives of the infected to destroy them before they come and destroy him.

Then one day, he finds a dog, and then a woman shows herself, clearly, like him, unaffected by the plague. Or is she? Whatever she is, he learns from her that the infected seek his death—for the crimes he’s committed against them. Crimes? He’d never thought of his hunts as any such thing.

So the question here becomes, are the creatures the monsters? Or is Morgan?

This version retains the Us vs. Them, feel, and Vincent Price is as ever, great, and one can see The Last Man on Earth DVD cover, Vincent Pricecomparisons between the zombies here and George Romero’s famous shambling zombies.

There are a couple scenes where they mis-edited things (it’s supposed to be night and Price turns a corner and it’s daylight, etc); the director also (in contrast to I Am Legend) included voice-overs so you get Morgan’s thoughts, but still, it’s intense and  enjoyable. If you'd like to check it out, it's available at Amazon.

(And yes, it too is an influence on my zombie story, Bicycle Requiem. You can check out the giveaway for it here.)

Have you seen this movie? If so, what'd you think of it?
Thanks for stopping by. You can see the rest of the participants in the hop by clicking the blue button below. Happy Halloween!!




THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW OVER.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

I Am Legend review--#‎Octoberfrights‬ #giveaway #zombieapocalypse

I_am_legend_teaserSo every time I think of Halloween this subject comes up. What books and movies can I talk about? Well, I realize I haven't done a review in a while. So, I pulled out my favorite of the last few years: I Am Legend. Yeah, yeah. I've heard a lot of people grumble about this movie, but I loved it. So! I thought why not. I'll probably review Vincent Price's 1964 movie version, The Last Man on Earth, later, so stay tuned.
The premise of Will Smith's version of I Am Legend, the movie is  pretty much the same. Sort of.

I Am Legend starts out with a newscaster interviewing a doctor (played by Emma Thompson) announcing the cure for Cancer has been found. YAA!!!

Well, not so fast. Three years later, we're shown a New York City that's completely abandoned and in ruins, overrun by wild animals, flora and fauna. Turns out, that so-called cure launched a virus that wiped out 90% of the world's population. Only 10% survive and, as far as our main character Dr. Neville knows, only one person has survived. Himself. The others have all turned into twisted, animalistic creatures, more zombie than human. Not to give any spoilers away but he works tirelessly to create a cure for this virus and distracts himself as he can, doing everything from working out, to watching every movie the local video stores have to offer (yes, this movie was made in 2007--before the collapse of the video stores!) and listening to cds, and scouting for supplies. On said-missions around NY Neville hopes to find survivors, but all he finds...are the infected. And
animal-er-zombie-like they see him as a possible food source. EEP!

Those scenes, particularly when he must go into a dark building where the zombies (or Darkseekers, as the movie calls them) are quite harrowing. The world itself, or what it has become with only one man left walking around tending to it, actually seems *snark* less far-fetched than most End of the World set pieces. But the story itself is just riveting in my opinion. Fans of Richard Mattheson's novel complained because the movie is different from the book, and those differences are probably why it got so many bad reviews. However,  I think Will Smith and crew did a fine job and despite the differences, I loved it. The message is just great, it's the end of the world as we know it, but we'll survive, we'll fix it, and be just fine.

*And yes, in case you're wondering, both I Am Legend/Last Man on Earth did have an influence on the little zombie story I'm giving away: Bicycle Requiem. Click here to find and fill out the Rafflecopter for said-giveaway.

****
Giveaway is now over.

Introducing authors: #fantasy author Annie DouglassLima--#indie #interview

Today, I have the pleasure of hosting my friend and fellow fantasy author Annie Douglass Lima. Her most recent release is an alternative history YA novel, The Collar and the Cavvarach, and I invited her here to tell you all a little more about it.

How did you first come to write fantasy?

Annie Douglass Lima: I’ve been writing for as long as I can recall. When I was seven years old, I had a sudden inspiration for what I thought was an amazing science fiction story and decided then and there that I was going to write a book and be the world's youngest author. I ran to my room in great excitement, found an old notebook and a pencil, and started in. Well, that first novel was never actually finished, let alone published, but it got me started. After that, I can't remember a time that I wasn't working on at least one book. Prince of Alasia, which I started in college, was the first one I finished that I thought was worth trying to get published, and then two more (In the Enemy’s Service and Prince of Malorn) joined the series.

It’s hard to see myself writing anything other than speculative fiction (fantasy, sci-fi, etc.). Nonfiction and realistic fiction just don’t give my imagination enough room to play! I like to be able to make the rules. Having said that, The Collar and the Cavvarach, my latest novel, isn’t really fantasy, at least not in the typical sense. It’s more of an alternate reality. If you were to step into that world, you would probably assume you were still in our own world – except for a few key details, like the prevalence of slavery.

The Collar & the Cavarach by Annie Douglass Lima, alternative historyThe story somehow puts me in mind of Gladiator. What inspired you to write The Collar and the Cavvarach?

Annie: I’ve had the idea growing in my mind for the last few years. It started as just a picture of the setting and its culture: a world almost exactly like ours, but with legalized slavery. The main characters, Bensin (a 14-year-old slave and martial artist) and Steene (his owner and coach) emerged gradually, along with the plot (Bensin’s struggle to protect and free his younger sister).

And for readers that might not understand, what is the Cavvarach?

Annie: A cavvarach is a sword-like weapon (pictured on the book cover) that is used in the martial art of cavvara shil. I wanted to create a challenging martial art for Bensin to compete in that was a combination of two or three different fighting styles, involving elements of unarmed combat as well as the use of a weapon. It took a few false starts before I had a fighting style I liked. At first I just pictured using a traditional sword, but I wanted something a little less stereotypical. The cavvarach, with a steel hook on the top edge of the blade, ended up being just right for what I had in mind. Combatants try to snag their opponent’s hook to tug the weapon out of the other person’s hand, which is one way to win a duel. (They can also knock it away with their own cavvarach, or kick it away.) Besides disarming an opponent, you can win by knocking them over and pinning their shoulders to the mat for five seconds.

By what authors would you say you are influenced?

Annie: C.S. Lewis provided my very first literary inspiration. More recently, I’ve enjoyed the works of inspirational fantasy author Anne Elisabeth Stengl. Her Tales of Goldstone Wood series is amazingly crafted. I love the way the time periods in some of the books overlap, focusing on different characters and sometimes different views of the same events. That storytelling style influenced my fantasy series, the Annals of Alasia, though not The Collar and the Cavvarach as much.



Lewis is a goodie. I've never heard of Stengl. I'll have to put her on my to be read list!

Any interesting stories to share about your road to publication?

Annie: As a teacher as well as an author, I've got a captive audience in my classroom.  I read all my books to my students before (and after) I publish them, and their feedback is tremendously helpful in improving my writing.  When the kids start yawning and playing with things in their desk as I read, I know I need to liven up that scene.  When they stare with wide eyes and don't even notice the recess bell, I know I've done something right.  And their questions and comments help me see what parts don't make sense or go over their heads.  So, I change what I need to and try to do more of what they respond well to.  I also have a club for middle schoolers that meets in my home after school once a week.  I read my books to them as well (but not the same ones those students heard when they were in 5th grade).  That way, after I've made changes after reading a book to my class, I can see how the new version works with my club, or vice versa. That has helped me SO much in my writing and publishing!



*lol* A captive audience. How fun! *fill in evil laugh here*

Now that The Collar and the Cavvarach is out, what can curious fans expect from you next?

Annie: I’m working on two more novels at the moment. King of Malorn will be the next one in the Annals of Alasia, and I’m hoping to have that published sometime this spring. The other one is The Gladiator and the Guard, which takes place four years after the events of The Collar and the Cavvarach. I drafted it last November (another NaNoWriMo project), but it still needs a lot of work. I hope to have it ready for publication by the end of this school year, but we’ll see.

(That always seems to happen with NanoWriMo projects). We will be looking forward to your new books! :)

If you weren’t a writer, what career might you have pursued instead?

Annie: I’m actually a fulltime teacher. While I love my day job, unfortunately it doesn’t leave me with nearly as much time for writing as I’d like. I mostly write on the weekends and on summer vacation, plus sometimes in the evenings if I don’t feel too brain-dead after a long day of teaching.

Do you have any advice for aspiring fantasy authors?

Annie: My advice is for any kind of writer. Don’t try to write a scene perfectly the first time or get frustrated if it doesn’t turn out the way you hoped. Just get your ideas on paper in whatever rough form you need to; never mind selecting just the right words or fixing any mistakes. Leave the scene alone for a few days, and when you come back to it, read through it and smooth out the obvious errors. Read through it again later and work on polishing it up a little more, and then a little more the next time, and so on. If possible, read it aloud to someone; that will help you hear errors or issues you may not notice otherwise. I’ve found that it usually takes lots of passes before I’m satisfied with something I’ve written. Trying to make it perfect the first time is stressful and next to impossible, at least for me.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?

Annie: If you like science fiction and fantasy, you might enjoy my “Realm Explorers” blog series. In this weekly series, different sci-fi and fantasy authors answer questions about the worlds their stories are set in. Examples of these questions include:

If we visit as tourists, what would you recommend we see or do?

What dangers should we avoid?

Is there a distinct or unusual type of food or meal that we might be served?

What types of sentient races might we encounter?

What types of weaponry or fighting styles are common there?

You can read recent Realm Explorers posts here. Feel free to subscribe to my blog to be alerted to the latest ones every Monday. It’s a fun way to find out much more about sci-fi and fantasy worlds than anyone could just by reading the book’s description on Amazon!



I second that.I always enjoy your Realm Explorers interviews, Annie!

Where can my readers find out more about you—and The Collar and the Cavvarach?

Annie: Anyone is welcome to visit my blog and social media pages (links below). In addition, I wrote a Realm Explorers post that describes the world that The Collar and the Cavvarach is set in, with interesting details about the culture (including food, weapons, transportation, entertainment, etc.). Click here to read that.



Blurb:

Bensin, a teenage slave and martial artist, is desperate to see his little sister freed. But only victory in the Krillonian Empire's most prestigious tournament will allow him to secretly arrange for Ellie's escape. Dangerous people are closing in on her, however, and Bensin is running out of time. With his one hope fading quickly away, how can Bensin save Ellie from a life of slavery and abuse?



The book itself is available through the following retailers:

Link to ebook on Amazon: http://smarturl.it/cavvarach

Link to ebook on Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/539122

Link to ebook on Kobo: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/the-collar-and-the-cavvarach-1

Link to ebook (Nook) on Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-collar-and-the-cavvarach-annie-douglass-lima/1121847057?ean=2940151898997

Link to ebook on Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Annie_Douglass_Lima_The_Collar_and_the_Cavvarach?id=tMfvCAAAQBAJ

Link to ebook on Apple iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-collar-and-the-cavvarach/id990745970?mt=11

Link to ebook on Google Books: https://books.google.com/books?isbn=1311045120

Link to ebook on Lulu: http://www.lulu.com/shop/annie-douglass-lima/the-collar-and-the-cavvarach/ebook/product-22157178.html

For More on Annie and her books see her social media links below:


Blog: http://anniedouglasslima.blogspot.com

Email: AnnieDouglassLima@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AnnieDouglassLimaAuthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/princeofalasia

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/ADLimaOnGoodreads

Google+: http://bit.ly/ADLimaOnGooglePlus

Amazon Author Page: http://bit.ly/AnnieDouglassLimaOnAmazon

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/AnnieDouglassLima

LinkedIn: http://bit.ly/ADLimaOnLinkedIn

About Annie:

Author Annie Douglass Lima; fantasy author; alternative history; Realm ExplorersAnnie Douglass Lima spent most of her childhood in Kenya and later graduated from Biola University in Southern California. She and her husband Floyd currently live in Taiwan, where she teaches fifth grade at Morrison Academy. She has been writing poetry, short stories, and novels since her childhood, and to date has published six books (three YA action adventure/fantasy and three anthologies of her students’ poetry). Besides writing, her hobbies include reading (especially fantasy and science fiction), scrapbooking, and international travel.

 Thank you for being with us, Annie! I wish you all the best with, and look forward to reading, all your fine works. :)


Monday, October 5, 2015

Vampires in Pop Culture--Movies #‎Octoberfrights‬ #giveaway

2015 October Frights Blog Hop, #‎Octoberfrights‬




vampire doll made by Cyndi's Dollz


Vampires in pop culture

Silver-Screen Vampires
Hollywood has always been fascinated with vampires; from the early days of the industry with such classics as Nosferatu and Bela Lugosi's portrayal of the Undead Romanian Count right up to the present day and works such as Dracula 2000, Interview with the Vampire and the (tragically underrated) Queen of the Damned, these beings are constantly recurring film stars. The most notable portrayal of him would have to be Christopher Lee:

Dracula and Bram Stoker Today--Christopher Lee

Christopher Lee: Hammer Horror interview 2001

Christopher Lee: Masters of Horror
Short Bio and list of his movies to 1999

The Dracula Myth
From HH : the UNofficial Hammer Films Site

Christopher Lee talks about his stint with Hammer Films and his role as Dracula

http://youtu.be/XY-xzYbEocM

I'm not too impartial to Gary Oldman's portrayal of the Count either. Now, that's a rendition to swoon over, ladies but never forget...he's a monster!
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMt47xHvjGo]

And the much maligned but actually quite good rendition of Anne Rice's Queen of the Damned starring Stuart Towsend, as Lestat de Lioncourt

And of course that giant of Pop Culture, Tom Cruise took his turn as Lestat de Lioncourt, and Brad Pitt took his as Louis... Or the creme de la creme Dracula portrayal by the inimitable Bela Lugosi.

They've all put some sort of stamp on the face of the vampire, and probably will continue to do so, for better or for worse! Some will no doubt fall flat on their faces (like USA/SF Channel's Dracula, Prince of Darkness--for all that they tried, bless their dark hearts. ;))

And then there's that paragon of teen angst, Twilight.

*cough* Well, I only saw the first one; honestly that was all I could stand. As bad as the novel is, the movie's worse. *shakes head* High school was never like that for me, and me? been there, done that. Don't remember it in quite that light, thanks.  But me, I prefer the "real" vampires. The ones that would rip a girl's throat out without worry about it. This whole, emasculated, "mooning love slave" vampire thing...*shrugs* eh.

Whatever.... It's done the author(s) well...For the moment. I always wonder what will be the thoughts on our "latest thing" a hundred years down the line. Will Twilight survive the test of time? We shall--or rather our descendants--see.

What's your favorite portrayal of the vampire?

Thanks for stopping by. You can see the rest of the participants in the hop by clicking the blue button below. Happy Halloween!!

Friday, October 2, 2015

October Frights blog hop--#‎Octoberfrights‬

Wait, what?? Is it October already?? You know what that means! Halloween and with it, Samhain! *pause to happy dance* :) I'm a early on decorating, this year, but bear with me. I am participating in paranormal author Clarissa Johal's October Frights Blog hop.

2015 October Frights Blog Hop, #‎Octoberfrights‬


I will however give you a peek into my newest release: a zombie pre-apocalypse (if you will) novelette, Bicycle Requiem and have a tiny giveaway.  So do read on... A little set up. the main character, Teddy, hit a girl (Mara) who was out early one morning, riding her bike. Teddy, most unadvisedly, didn't stop to help and the little girl died....or did she?
Teddy's not sure. She's been terrified to go to the police about the accident and now, she wonders if she's losing her mind. Because now, seeing the girl everywhere. Something like this:

What did that little girl on the bike have planned for her life? I wondered, ignoring the computer’s blinking cursor, staring out the window.

The child materialized in the mist. Her eyes sunken in, her cheeks dark and hollow. I narrowed my eyes watching her. She rode on the back of a huge sheepdog.

No, she wasn’t riding exactly; blood and something else dripped down her jaw and stained the dog’s fur. I realized she’d been gnawing at the animal’s head. She wiped her mouth on the back of her hand and waved at me.

What the hell was she? Dead? Alive? A ghoul? A zombie? What?

Hours later, the light of the full moon filling my room, I couldn’t sleep.

Strange nightmares plagued my sleep: little Mara on her red bike pursuing me through ancient battlefields, speeding her way around and through the legs of screaming warriors. The little girl lying in the street, her bicycle askew, her limp body bent in odd angles; her candy apple red eyes watching me accusingly. Sirens blaring, a police cruiser behind my car, inside which I sat transfixed, afraid to move, watching myself beg a ghost for mercy. A girl dressed in police blues, her triple pupils lit with some ethereal, accusing fire. I squinted to see the words on her shiny gold badge. Was she a junior G-man? Had she somehow joined the Florida State Troopers?

Did they allow zombies to join their squad?

Good question! Want to know a little more about Bicycle Requiem? Here's the blurb. bicyclereqcopy2(1)

On the way home from a draining night of work, Theodora (called Teddy by her friends) finds herself guilty of something she'd never dreamed: a hit and run that results in a child's death. Wracked with guilt, Teddy hides her secret, carrying on as if nothing happened, but when the victim's zombie returns, bringing along her own kind of disturbing justice, Teddy learns innocent little Mara isn't exactly what she seemed.

And Teddy wonders, would jail be better than eternity with the vengeful girl's accusing spectre.

Is it a small price to pay--and for what?

I will give one Smashwords coupon for the e-copy of choice of Bicycle Requiem to a lucky winner. Please leave me a comment below, do you believe restless spirits (or in this case a restless spirit's zombie?) can haunt the guilty? And also click here and do the  rafflecopter thing. :)

Muhawahaha!

If you'd like to check it out before the end of the giveaway, Bicycle Requiem is available at Amazon (worldwide) and other venues via Smashwords.

And for those fans of the Antique Magic series, you may find a little treat inside Teddy's story. :)

Thanks for stopping by. You can see the rest of the participants in the hop by clicking the blue button below. Happy Halloween!!



Greek Myth by author Stella McLeod

Bewitching

I'm pleased to welcome paranormal romance author Stella McLeod, who has a topic I'm sure most of you will find interesting. Greek Myth and how it tied into her latest release, ALWAYS HAVE AND ALWAYS WILL and she tells us a little about herself too. So, grab some coffee or your beverage of choice :) and enjoy!
Author: Stella McLeod
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Title: Always Have and Always Will
New Release Date: 1/10/15

Have you ever read about the ancient Greek Gods and wondered where they came from? Well the new paranormal romance released this week, Always Have and Always Will has the answer. This luscious romance set in the Greek Islands unveils the secret to Immortality discovered in Antiquity, reveals a young ancient warrior who has waited for over 2000 years for his lover to return to him and a modern reincarnated woman who cannot remember her past-life or him. Throw in his sinister twin brother, her best friend Menander, some living Gods and the murderer and you have a plot to die for.


McLeod brings her experience as a psychologist to bear in the creation of her characters and story, making them challenging, flawed and deliciously vulnerable. Her hero is a warrior who wants to be a lover and her heroine, a lover who wants to be a warrior. With a past she cannot escape and a future he cannot accept does love find a way? Of course it does! This is a romance after all, and like all good therapists or romance writers, and despite a twisted plot, McLeod delivers that perfect happy ending.

We put some questions to Stella McLeod about her new book and being an author.

How did you become a writer?
Some people say authors are born not made, I think authors are just people who decide they want to write. I decided I wanted to write when I was a teenager, mainly because I was abysmal at Maths, Physics and Chemistry but good at English. I entered competitions, started winning awards and the positive reinforcement strengthened my behaviour. What I didn’t know and wasn’t to learn until I became a Clinical Psychologist was that intermittent reinforcement is the most powerful force in determining human behaviour and writers get plenty of that with rejections/acceptances, fans who love you and others not so much. Like the majority of writers I’ve managed to keep writing and getting published consistently, while being a mother and working in a full time occupation but a few years ago I decided to retire early from private full time practice as a Psychologist and that writing was going to be my full time, instead of part-time career. It wasn’t so much a leap of faith, rather just a reaching of a crossroad and deciding one path gave me more joy, more fulfillment. All the clues were all there anyway, like signposts, showing me which way to go; most of my friends were writers, I spent all my free time either writing, thinking about writing or reading other peoples writing.

What types of books do you like writing the best?
Over the years I’d written everything from Medico-legal reports for the courts, professional journal articles and conference papers for Psychologists, scripts for pre-school TV shows, children’s picture books and cook books, YA and teenage fiction, a series of technical cookbooks for The Culinary Library and novel length romances. When I committed to writing full time I knew, both consciously and subconsciously, it was Romance novels I wanted to focus on. One of the things I’d learned as a Psychologist was that, although every one’s stories and pain seem different there are common universal threads of humanity and we are more similar than we know. For most people it is the complexities of human relationships that they seek to unravel, understand and master. We may all start off on different roads but they are all heading in the same direction, hoping for the same destination. Romance writing is the genre that, to me, best explores the many facets of human relationship, but in the end it is the ONLY genre that absolutely delivers what most people are ultimately looking for throughout all stages of their life from childhood to death, acceptance, love and a place of peace and acceptance where they feel good about themselves and the world. (or as my heroine in Always Have and Always Will says, she just wants to feel beloved on the earth.)

Has being a Psychologist helped you become a better writer?
I could easily and legitimately draw an analogy between Psychological Therapy and Reading Romance books. They both involve a stepping away from and temporary suspension of the everyday world, trust and faith that the therapist or author can deliver what they advertise and promise and the goal of a happy ending that makes the participant feel better about themselves, more in control and more optimistic about the world. The difference is romance readers don’t need and aren't looking to be told anything because they’re not looking for therapy in that sense. What they are looking for, I believe, is entertainment, not just to be shown a different world from theirs, but to be taken there emotionally, to be immersed in it for a few hours and forget about everyday responsibilities. But it has to be interesting, exciting and peopled with characters that they can quickly learn to love (or hate) and care about and ones they hope and know are going to find happiness if they can only stay strong and courageous. Romance novels are a temporary escape from the pressures of everyday life and they immerse the thoughts and emotions of the reader, literally, into a different world, into lives and problems that are entertaining and interesting, and a story that guarantees those problems will ABSOLUTELY all be sorted by the last page, or in my case, the last word if necessary. (Never read the last pages of a book first, your subconscious will hate you for it because it wants the chance to work it out for you!)

So why paranormal? Always Have and Always Will is not about vampires, shape-shifter, werewolves or some of the other traditional paranormal species or human aberrations, it’s a paranormal in the sense that it introduces and normalizes the super-natural themes of Immortality, reincarnation, life after death and mind control. These concepts are not so unfamiliar that we can’t believe in them and empathize with the characters and an added bonus is the beautiful and exotic setting they allow for the action to unfold. Most paranormal characters require dark, gloomy and edgy setting to get about their bloody business. My ancient warriors, living Immortals who are alive today, are more likely to be found in the Greek Islands,(book 1) Egypt(book2) , Rome and Italy, Babylon (book 3) and the lands mentioned in the Bible. And the added plot benefit with Immortality is the complications it allows for relationships and love. Let’s face it, Immortality is shit if all the people you love are dead or if you keep making the same mistakes for centuries or if your love is unrequited. And it doesn’t matter how many decades, centuries or millennium you live there are times in your life when you are going to want to feel beloved on this earth.
My Hero: The fast-paced action and exotic settings don’t work if the characters aren't interesting. Mine are complex and flawed with rich inner psychological lives who are searching for, and trying to understand, love. I am particularly fond of my hero in Always Have and Always Will. Alexander is my kind of man, He’s handsome of course, and built as you would expect an ancient warrior to be built, he’s self sufficient, reliable and tough. But he wants to be softer, gentler and a better lover, he just doesn’t know how. He’s exasperating! But my heroine, after a rocky start, starts working him out, making excuses for him and making a plan! Her humor is a foil to his seriousness and her vulnerability counters his strength. There are plenty of clues to the core mystery along the way, plot twists you won’t see coming and a fully resolved but delicious ending.
The message ? Never give up on love, it’s worth every sacrifice.





Stella McLeod, stairs picture

Why is it called the Omega Series?

Because it’s about time the heroine told the story and whilst we all love strong and delicious alphas, Romance Writers, I believe, are the most supportive and inclusive group of Omegas in the world. (and that included the male authors as well.) Every romance reader knows the Greek alphabet begins with Alpha and it has been adopted and used to describe the first or strongest male, the hero, but did you know the Greek alphabet ends with Omega? The Omega symbol in classical Greece was associated with Birth and Creation, it symbolized the female or feminine and celebrated a woman’s ability to nurture a child thereby achieving immortality for both herself and her mate. So although man was symbolized by the first letter of the Greek alphabet, Alpha, women get the last word because it was the Omega symbol that was considered the most auspicious and most blessed by the ancient Greek Gods. Yaaaaaay!!!



"Omega uc lc" by Dcoetzee, F l a n k e r - Own work. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons -
"Omega uc lc" by Dcoetzee, F l a n k e r - Own work. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons -







Monemvasia provided by author Stella McLeod

Always Have and Always Will, paranormal romance, by Stella McLeodThe Cover: Designed by the wonderful Hang Le (USA) who does Kylie Scott’s, Anna Campbell and Elsa Holland’s covers. And the image of Anastasia holding her lituus is by Deanne Whitmore, a talented digital designer from New Zealand who’s work can be found as rgus at deviantart. The lituus plays an important role in the book. It was a perfectly straight shaft of wood, without knots or blemishes, with two intricately carved and curled golden ends. It was used by a cult of ancient diviners, priests & priestesses called augers who divined the will of the Gods. By moving the Lituus, the auger created a templum, a ritual or sacred space, either in the sky where birds, clouds or stars were read as portents or on the earth to create a place of power protected by the Gods. A templum on earth was for aligning Elysium with the four cardinal points on earth, each corner for different portents, North (divine approval), South (divine disapproval), West (the sacred entrance and altar) and East (sacrifices). Buildings, gardens, animals and people inside the templum were deemed sacred for eternity. The Roman historian Livy wrote, "who does not know that this city (Rome) was founded only after taking the auspices, that everything in war and in peace, at home and abroad, was done only after taking the auspices?"
In 300 BC there were 9 augers who could wield the lituus and who had the knowledge necessary to interpret auspices, the messages sent by the Gods.



Atlantis harbor courtesy of author Stella McLeod

The auger selected an elevated place, the lituus was moved to draw two straight lines intersecting at right angles one from north to south, one from east to west. Then two parallel lines were drawn at the ends of these lines to form an external square, divided into four by the first two lines. This templum intersection, in the centre, was the tabernaculum where the augur stood or sat, facing north and asked for the Gods’ assistance. A sign on the left was good, a sign on the right was bad; Greece was always north. In the observation of birds, the augur was not confined to noticing their flight, but used cries and entrails. Pre-Christian augers existed until the end of the 4th century AD but by then, when the multiple ancient Gods were usurped by the one single God, a modified lituus, with only a single scroll on one end, was renamed the ‘crosier’ by Christians. It is still carried by Bishops of the Roman Catholic church today and by the Pope who has replaced the scroll with a cross!
Thank you for having me as a guest today.
I hope you all love Alex and Anastasia and they inspire to greater love.

Kind Regards
Stella McLeod



You're most welcome, Stella! How can my readers learn more about you?

Feel free to visit to contact me:
Stella McLeod Pinterest Boards:
https://www.pinterest.com/authorstellamcl/
Stella McLeod Website:
http://www.stellamcleod.com/
To purchase digital download @$2.99: Always Have and Always Will
For print version @ $12.99: Always Have and Always Will:
http://www.amazon.com/Always-Have-Will-Omega/dp/1500270598/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1443155504&sr=1-1&keywords=di+gramp



Thanks so much for being my guest today, Stella! Good luck with Always Have and Always Will.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

The Eternal Undead by David Monette

Bewitching Book Tours button

Our next guest  has our interest not only with the approach of the Halloween season, but with the rise in interest in the walking dead (and a certain little angry (undead) girl we've had shlephing around here lately!) So it's our pleasure to welcome author David Monette, who is here with a little about his latest release, THE ETERNAL UNDEAD. Take it away, David!

The Eternal Undead by David Monette, Zombies, Horror, Urban fantasyThe Eternal Undead

In the Time of the Dead

Book III

David Monette

Genre: Horror, Urban Fantasy

Publisher: Severed Press

Date of Publication: October 1, 2015

ISBN: 978-1925342536

ASIN: B015NY9J4A

Number of pages: 280

Word Count: 100,579

Cover Artist: David Monette

Book Description:

They thought they had escaped.

The battle for Washington DC is behind them, and the last remnants of the human race have fled from their undead enemies to a remote Caribbean island where they try to salvage what is left of humanity. But even here, the zombies have come. Led by the architect of the holocaust, an invading army wreaks havoc trying to acquire the one thing that can stop them, and the one thing a small contingent of soldiers knows they must never get.

Join with Sasha, Terrance, Virgil, and the little girl, Max, in an all or nothing gamble as they fight down the road to either salvation or horrible defeat in the thrilling conclusion of this series.



Excerpt:

As the day slipped away far off to the west, the darkness of the jungle became a living thing. Knit together by the slow creep of lengthening shadows, it grew by degrees into a massive being, shapeless and black. For nourishment it ate the weak or the unlucky. In return it exhaled moist heat and a cavalcade of sound, the sound of thousands of separate voices, large and small, all coming together to meet the ear in a constant sheet of noise. Those who were responsible for the making of this chaotic ballad were invisible to the naked eye of man. This was so not just because of the darkness, but because most of the performers—the frogs, birds, and insects—were hidden within the surrounding vegetation, frightened of being killed by their neighbors, either eaten, or as was the case with the troop of humans quietly slipping along a trail, flattened under a boot.

For one of the six members of this troop of humans, such an act would have been celebrated with a certain degree of relish. Terrance hated the sound of the jungle at night. There were not many things in his life that he gave away for free, but in his hatred he was quite generous. He hated the bleats, the croaks and hoots, and he hated the creatures that made the noise. He hated the darkness and the fact that he had to wear a pair of thermal goggles to plumb its depths. He hated the heat, and the plants, and the bugs. He hated the head-to-toe leather suit he wore… and most of all he hated the reason he had to wear the suit, the reason he was out in the jungle at night in the first place. He hated the zombies. Or more accurately, he feared the zombies and he hated them for that fear.

His terror of these beasts was not unfounded. Since the first day of the apocalypse when a host of diabolical necromancers eradicated most of the human population on earth and then raised the dead as zombies, the resulting creatures could, with a single bite, turn any living person into one of them. Terrance had seen it done before. It was not pretty. The resilient leather he wore formed a fairly reliable barrier between a bite and death, so day or night, no matter how hot it was, whenever he or anyone else left the barricades surrounding the city of St George’s on a patrol, they wore the protective clothing. The safety it provided far outweighed the bladders of water they needed to carry or the periodic “cool downs” they had to perform while nestled in the boughs of a tree.

Either way, Terrance hated it all.

In fact, he was so busy nursing his various hatreds that he barely noticed when Danger, the woman on point, suddenly raised her fist head-high and froze.

The fire team immediately came to a stop.

Terrance’s finger slipped from outside the trigger guard of his MP5SD sub-machinegun to curl around the curve of the trigger. The contact made him feel safer, more in control.

Around the task force the sound of the jungle withered and slowly died.

The point person opened her fist, laid the flat palm parallel to the ground, and took a knee.

Seeing this, Lieutenant Burgis, the officer in command, looked back and motioned those behind to follow suit.

They crouched and in the dark waited.

There was something out there.

About the Author:

Author David Monette


David Monette was born and raised in the cold rural hinterlands of upstate New York. As a typical kid in a typical community, life for him was pretty... typical. He liked to draw creatures and contraptions but as the second born of four sons, such ability was merely a convenient way of standing out from the crowd. As he inexpertly stumbled through high school, his talent for capturing the images in his head onto paper was noticed and encouraged by both teachers and family members.

Without any other idea of what to do with himself after graduation, besides a vague idea of doing something art oriented, he decided to attend Mohawk Valley Community College where he received his associate's degree in Advertising Design and Production. Acting on excellent advice from his teachers at this institution, he went on to Syracuse University where he learned a great deal about art and eventually wound up with a bachelor's degree in Illustration.

With a disturbingly large amount of student debt and a decent portfolio, he learned what it was to be a starving artist. Namely, he found that artists don't starve; they simply pick up an endless series of part time work to pay the rent while continuing to plug away at their true passion. This was essentially what he did until he received his first illustration job and from that point on, he didn't look back. As an illustrator, his highly detailed fantasy and science fiction work has appeared in many books, magazines, board games, and collectible card games for such varied publishers as Dell Publishing, Wizards of the Coast, and Atlas Games. Initially, he had completed these diverse projects utilizing oil and acrylic paints as well as pen and inks.

As digital technology continued to improve, however, he decided it was time to tackle the arduous task of mastering the computer and eventually figured out a way to adapt his style to a digital format. With this knowledge and experience, he went back to school and received his master's degree in Illustration from the University of Hartford. While there, his instructors reviewed his written work and had strongly suggested that he combine his writing ability with his talent as an illustrator to chart his own path.

And hence, an author was born.

Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/davidmonetteauthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/PaintWriteDave

Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7334521.David_Monette

Blog: http://davidmonette.blogspot.com/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/davidmonette

Instagram: https://instagram.com/paintwritedave/

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/David-Monette/e/B00FMX73DM

Tour giveaway

1 prize containing all 3 ebooks of the trilogy
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Direct link to entry form: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/ba112ffc1167

This giveaway is now over.

If, in the meantime, you'd like to check THE ETERNAL UNDEAD out, it's available at Amazon.

Juli's Books

Available at Amazon. Some also available at Audible, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords and Createspace.
Frigga's
New audiobook @ Audible
Victorian romance, historical romance, Juli D. Revezzo, historical romance, read free with Amazon Prime, Kindle Unlimited
The Artist's Inheritance, Antique Magic book 1, by Juli D. Revezzo, Gothic fiction, witch fiction, pagan paranormal fictionCaitlin's Book of Shadows, Antique Magic book 2, by Juli D. Revezzo, short fiction, free ebook, witch fiction, pagan paranormal fictionDrawing Down the Shades, Antique Magic book 3, by Juli D. Revezzo, Gothic fiction, witch fiction, pagan paranormal fiction
Lady of the Tarot by Juli D. Revezzo, Gothic romance, historical romance, tarotHouse of Cards, Reign of Tarot book 1, by Juli D. Revezzo, pagan paranormal fiction, witch fiction, tarot-themed fiction, Gothic fiction, supernatural horrorPassion's Sacred Dance, Celtic Stewards Chronicles, book 1 by Juli D. Revezzo, fantasy, romance, pagan paranormal romance, read free with Kindle UnlimitedDruid Warrior's Heart, Celtic Stewards Chronicles, book 2 by Juli D. Revezzo, fantasy, romance, pagan paranormal romance, read free with Kindle Unlimited
Sing a Mournful Melody by Juli D. Revezzo, Gothic fiction, Vampire fiction, short storyChangeling's Crown by Juli D. Revezzo, New Adult, fantasy, romance, pagan paranormal romanceMurder Upon a Midnight Clear by Juli D. Revezzo, paranromal mystery, Christmas romance, pagan paranormal romance, read free with Kindle UnlimitedWatchmaker's Heart by Juli D. Revezzo, Steampunk romance, Victorian romance, read free with Kindle Unlimited
Bicycle Requiem by Juli D. Revezzo, Gothic fiction, zombie fiction, novelette, borrow with Kindle Unlimited

Social media



AmazonbloglovinFacebook

google+InstagramPinterest

twitter



Join my newsletter/mailing list and get a free story now!

* indicates required
Email Format

View previous campaigns.

Blog Archive

Moon

CURRENT MOON

Networked blogs