Author, Books, Promo, Writing

Book Blitz – Love Defined

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Title:  Love, Defined
Author:   Leila Tualla
 Published:  August 4th, 2015
Publisher:   Limitless Publishing, LLC
Genre:  YA Christian Fiction
Recommended Age:  Upper YA

Synopsis:  Into their final summer before graduating college, three childhood friends, Alex Makapulo, Lori Hanson, and Andy Taylor had each expected an uncomplicated transition to adulthood.
Alex is toying with the idea of leaving the Catholic Church and becoming a member of her best friend, Jack Page’s church. Jack wonders what is keeping Alex from being baptized and fully accepting a new life with Christ. Alex wonders the same thing and believes that she needs to be 100 % in her conviction before fully committing to a new Christian life.
For Lori’s twenty-second birthday, her grandfather, Pete Hanson, presents her with a summer vacation to England. While looking up various tourist spots, she meets and befriends Colin Watson, a British musician, online who then suggest they meet when she lands in London. They hit it off instantly but Pete is angry and believes that she only used him as a means to meet Colin. When he finds out that Lori met Colin online, he forbids Lori from seeing Colin entirely. Lori, who has fallen in love with Colin, is heartbroken. Pete threatens to leave England with Lori’s passport. Colin and Lori try to arrange meetups where they can see each other but Pete catches on. Lori takes this as a sign that it wasn’t meant to be. She unhappily finishes her trip with Pete and goes home vowing not to forgive her grandfather.
Andy reconnects with her old crush, Miles Webber and decides she wants a more meaningful relationship with him. She tells Alex about the situation and Alex truthfully tells Andy that Miles only wants her for sex. This angers Andy and she walks out of the apartment. After she’s cooled down, she comes up with an idea to throw a surprise birthday party for Alex. Andy believes that if Alex and Jack were to hook up, the focus would shift from Miles and her. Andy spikes all the drinks for Alex’s party and leaves her friend while she goes in search of Miles. He shows up at the bar with another girl. In an effort to soothe her wounded ego, she goes home with someone else. When she wakes up the next day, she realizes she’s in bed with Alex’s young boss from the coffeehouse, David Roberts, Jr.
When Alex wakes up the next day, she finds Jack in her room and freaks out. They figure out that Andy had spiked the drinks. Alex gets angry but Jack tells Alex that he is in love with her, and has been since they first met in ninth grade. It only confuses her all the more and causes her to contemplate whether he is God’s blessing or a test to distract her from her beliefs. While she has strong feelings for him, she chooses to ignore Jack’s confession and hopes that he moves on, as she doesn’t want to complicate their friendship.
Andy comes home and confess everything to Alex. Alex hesitatingly accepts the apology. Andy vows not to do anything crazy for the next few months and drops the Miles subject altogether.
When Andy learns she is pregnant and doesn’t know if Miles or David is the father, she decides to abort the baby, as she not ready to be a mother. Alex opposes the idea of abortion and begs Andy to change her mind. Andy doesn’t waver from her decision and even asks Alex and Lori to take her to a clinic.
Their trip to Houston tests their friendship and Alex’s faith. Can their friendship still survive after Andy’s decision? Will Alex find her conviction in the midst of this emotional rollercoaster?

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About the Author:
Leila Tualla is a Filipino American. She is a Christian blogger and writer. Leila Tualla is the author of Love, Defined, a contemporary YA romance. An avid reader, she often posts book reviews on her website at http://www.leilatualla.com. Leila is currently writing a memoir about her faith, anxieties of motherhood, postpartum depression, and preeclampsia journey. She is a two-time Preeclampsia survivor and online advocate. When she’s not reading or writing, she can be found chasing her ‘Mexipino’ rugrats and simultaneously trying to learn her mother-in-law’s recipes and language, and making sure the eggrolls are “made with love,” per her Mama ‘Lil.’
Excerpt from Love, Defined by Leila Tualla

Alex: 

“Do you think no matter what we do, we are still forgiven?” Somewhere between Francesca Battistelli’s He Knows My Name and Casting Crown’s I Will Praise You In The Storm, Andy finally spoke. “I mean.” Andy stopped.
The last song had reached its thunderous ascent and rolled towards the finish. Alex had barely heard her and for a second, thought that perhaps she had imagined it. Almond shaped brown eyes locked briefly in the mirror with a pair of big blue eyes and Alex waited, expecting Andy to go on.
She didn’t. Instead, Andy broke eye contact and turned her head to face the window.
“Yes.” She finally replied. Andy jerked up, and the two caught each other’s gaze again before Alex had to look back at the road again, frowning. “We can be forgiven as long as we ask for forgiveness, and repent and promise not to do it again.”
Another song began and once again replaced the gap of silence. Alex turned her head this time to see Andy’s eyes closed, headphones on, effectively dismissing her. She sighed out loud and set her sights on the horizon.
Lord, I pray this won’t be the last time she asks about forgiveness.
Skyscrapers of oil and energy giants glistened as they neared downtown Houston. After some guidance with the GPS, her car pulled up into the tightly spaced parking lot of the Women’s Clinic. The brick building was among other non-descript buildings that they could have easily passed by. A lot better than a little backroom, Alex surmised.
“How did you find this place?” Lori asked reluctantly. Alex got out of the Volkswagen and immediately wanted to retreat back inside. The thought of what took place inside started to make her stomach churn. Despite the blaring sun and Texas humidity, she shuddered.
“The internet.” Andy mumbled the answer as she was getting out of the car.
The three of them stood in the parking lot, in a small circle, looking at their surroundings, the traffic behind them, and nervously at each other.
Alex fixed her eyes on Andy. She wanted to say that ‘You have to forgive yourself and then ask for forgiveness.’ But her lips couldn’t form the words. She had three hours on the drive to craft the perfect words to get through to Andy and yet, here they all were, under the Texas heat, in the middle of a parking lot, shivering with nerves and barely registering each other.
After a brief period of silence, Alex cleared her throat. “Andy, you can still change your mind.”
“I know.” Came the softest reply.
Alex’s jaw tightened, and she looked at her feet to hide her feelings once more. Again, her brain tried to tell her lips to formulate the words it wanted and she looked up to open her mouth again and frowned when no words would come. Again.
This time, Alex searched her friend’s beautiful face and prayed that somewhere in those blue eyes, she could find the one thing for her to go ‘Aha! You’re just as scared as I am. You’re just as doubtful about this thing. Let’s get out of here.’ Her heart sank when instead of those things she hoped to find in her friend’s eyes, she found a quiet and settled determination.
She swallowed the defeat, shoulders hunched down and felt there was only one more thing left to say. “You are loved, Andrea Grace Taylor, remember that. Find your courage.”
Andy just nodded with the faintest smile on her lips
“Okay, you guys.” Alex said trying to keep her voice light and tried to respond to Andy’s smile. It wasn’t working. “I’ll be at the Barnes & Noble we saw on the way here. Call me when you’re done.” She was heading for the car, when she turned around and added, “Call me if you change your mind.”
A few minutes later, she maneuvered in and out of traffic, half concentrating on finding the bookstore. The other remained back at the parking lot of the clinic. A bright green Scion cut in front of her with a slew of bumper stickers. Coexist and Got Jesus, but Alex fixed on the yellow sign with black letters that read “Headed in the wrong direction? God allows for U-Turns.” Andy. Dear God, am I doing the right thing?



Giveaway Details:
There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:
  • Signed copy of the book and $10 Starbucks Gift Card
Giveaway is US only.
Ends June 19th, 2017 at 11:59 PM ET.

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Author, Books, Literary, Writing

Book Blitz: No Rest for the Wicked

Title:  No Rest for the Wicked
Author:  Krystal Jane Ruin
Published:  May 10th, 2017
Publisher:  The Narcissistic Rose
Genre:  Paranormal

Synopsis:  Since her release from the psychiatric facility and into the smothering guardianship of her aunt, twenty-one-year-old psychic Tatum Torabi has been sneaking away to sell curses and plagues in the underground, a black market known for illegal and supernatural wares.

Tatum’s unique abilities catch the attention of a hella-creepy trash peddler who offers her a job tracking down people who owe his boss “a favor.” She couldn’t be less interested, but when she refuses, the company forces her compliance by threatening the lives of the only family she has left.
Because tracking barely scratches the surface of what they really want from her. There’s a reason Tatum is so good at making curses, and they want her to use those skills for a much darker purpose.
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GoodReads

Excerpt for No Rest for the Wicked:
The coffee can is almost empty. I swear there was more in here an hour ago. In fact…my eyes scan the darkened cabinet. There were three canisters of coffee in here an hour ago. Now there is only this one, and it’s missing seven-eighths of the contents it had last time. A groan emits from my throat. “Freaking Kalin.”
“What?”
I shake my head and dump what’s left into the coffee maker. “No one trusts me in this house.”
Emmerick pulls the lid off the lasagna and starts eating it cold, dipping his fork right into the container. “I trust you.”
“Shut up.”
He smiles. “I’m going to let that slide because you’re cranky.”
I rest my elbows on the counter and drop my head into my hands as I wait for the pitiful amount of coffee to drop into the pot.
“Wanna play blackjack?”
When I lift my head, Emmerick is holding up a pack of playing cards.
“You just carry playing cards around with you?”
“Maybe.” His grin widens.
I look over his pocket-less lounge pants and tank top. “How?”
Without answering, he flips on the overhead light and sets up on one side of the island. I reluctantly drag my heavy feet to the other side. He shovels cold food into his mouth with one hand and divvies out cards with the other.
“So, tell me,” he says, peeking at his facedown card, “why aren’t you sleeping?”
I peek at mine. Queen of Spades. On top I have an ace of clubs. My face brightens into a smile before I can stop it. “What makes you think I’m not sleeping?”
The coffee maker starts to steam, and he gives it a pointed glance.
“Oh that? I always wake up in the middle of the night to drink a pot of coffee. It helps me sleep.” I meet his gaze and smile. “It’s why I look so great all the time.”
Laughter escapes his lips. “I was wondering what your secret was.” He flips his cards over. Ten of diamonds to go with his nine of hearts. “Hold.”
I flip my queen over. “I win.”


About the Author:

Krystal Jane Ruin is a writer of supernatural and paranormal fiction living in the Tennessee Valley. She can often be found knee deep in Sudoku, in a Youtube hole, or blogging about books, writing, and random things at www.krystalsquared.net.











Giveaway Details:

There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:
  • print copy of the book, a gothic coloring book, a bookish tote bag, a bookmark, and a keychain
Giveaway is US only. Ends May 16th at 12:59 PM ET.

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Book Blast: Elsekind

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Title:   Elsekind
Author:  Celeste Hollister
Published:  April 20th, 2017
Publisher:   Black Rose Writing
Genre:  YA Fantasy
Synopsis:  Kex Mardugal is half human, half something… Else. With her dark skin and wild eyes, humankind considers her a soulless abomination. In the face of prejudice, Kex has carved a place for herself in human society. She earned the rank of King’s Champion, securing a position of strength within her homeland.
This attracts the attention of an inscrutable sorcerer who entreats Kex to join his party of warriors to fight against an enigmatic evil threatening to overtake their world.
But conflicts within the party undermine their ability to work together. All the while, their enemy, a strange and powerful demon, steadily gains strength, commanding deadly storms and legions of curselings to spread its blight across the land.
As an Elsekind, Kex discovers that she alone can define her code of honor in order to fight against the monsters of the world.
Amazon Paperback | Black Rose Writing | GoodReads

Excerpt from Elsekind by Celeste Hollister:
Kex and Hailan
            Kex curled her knees tight against her chest. She breathed in slow, deep breaths. Her weapon felt cold beneath her palm. Rough boards rasped against her cheek as she pressed her face to the floor. Muffled footsteps approached – barefoot, if she had to guess. She tightened her fist around the weapon and waited. The angle was wrong, but she was too small to overpower him in a close fight. She would rely on quickness and the element of surprise. He would never think to find her here.
            Her pulse quickened as the footfalls paused. The door opened on a well-oiled hinge. A sphere of lamplight revealed two hairy ankles, and – just as she hoped – two naked feet. Kex drew a breath and waited.
            Closer, she thought. Come closer. I dare you.
            Lamplight and legs loomed nearer but still out of reach. The lamp’s handle squeaked as he set it upon the table. Then he turned and shuffled forward, giving her an unpleasant glimpse of his toenails. Inches away, then half-inches, then precisely where she wanted him.
            Kex lashed out, stabbing down into the top of his foot. He howled and hopped – as she hoped – and she kicked out, her heel connecting with his ankle, knocking his other foot out from beneath him.
            He scrabbled to his side, quick for his size, but by then she had used his own leg to haul herself from beneath the bed. She vaulted astride him, pressing her weapon to his freshly-shaven throat.
            “Where is it?” she hissed.
            Eyes wide, he glanced from her to the weapon pressed into his neck.
            “Oh, by the Saints,” he moaned.
            She bore down, sinking it deeper into his skin. “I asked you a question.”
            He stammered, then refocused. “Is that a fork?”
            “Aye.” The skin blanched around the tines as she leaned her weight into it. “I can make you bleed with a fork.”
            “I think you already did,” he whined. She noted that he lay very, very still as he said, “C’mon, Kex, what’s this about?”
            She narrowed her eyes. “Don’t play around, Hailan Chase. You know well what I want.”
            “Nope.” Hailan carefully shook his head. “Not me.”
            “I may not kill you with this,” Kex said through her teeth. She bore down enough to make him squirm. “But I will maim you – four perfect little cuts – and everywhere you go, from this day forward, everyone will know that Lady Kex took you down with a utensil.”
            “Oh, Lady, is it?” Hailan said.
            “Don’t change the subject,” she said. “Where is my book?”
            “Hmm… Book?”
            “The Codex, damn it. Where is it?”
            Hailan raised his hands. “Xylo has it.”
            “Your sister?” Kex clicked her tongue.
            “She’s awful clever.”
            “She’s eight.”
            Kex felt his weight shift. She knew this maneuver. If he thought he was going to roll her, she had to ensure he was too frightened to try. She flicked her wrist, caught the fork with her left hand, and positioned it above his eye.
            His dilating pupils told her all she needed to know. He wouldn’t be moving. He might not dare to breathe.
            “It is my Mother’s book,” Kex said. “I want it back.”
            Hailan swallowed several gulps of air. “She’s a curious girl, my sister. You’re the only Elsekind she’s ever seen.”
            Kex hissed through her teeth. Hailan cringed.
            She said, “Xylo’s seen Alusians.”
            “That’s different,” he said. “You’re different. I mean, not different, not like Halfkin different, but you’re not the same.” He moaned. “You know what I mean.”
            Kex eased back but kept the fork pointed at his face. Yes, she knew what he meant. All too well. “With my permission, Xylo may borrow any object in my possession. But you will not take them without asking. Nod if you understand.”
            Hailan nodded. He looked like he might be sick.
            “Go now and fetch it back,” Kex said. She got to her feet and moved to the door. “I will meet you and Aralund on the pitch in one half hour.”
            Hailan massaged his neck. As she opened the door, he said, “Kex, I was only playing.”
            Though she saw his sincerity, she could not afford to soften. She said, “I know that. Which is why you I leave you unharmed.” With a smirk, she added, “Well. Mostly.”

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About the Author:
Celeste Hollister is a novelist, a mom, a travel writer, and willing cat minion. She writes books for people who struggle with racial identity and LGBT+ representation. She graduated from Texas State University with a degree in writing, taught in urban schools for a decade, and lived in South Korea for a year. She loves wine, cookies, traveling abroad, and fanfiction. Currently, she lives in San Marcos with her lovely boyfriend and fabulous daughter.





Giveaway Details:
There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:
  • $20 Amazon gift card.
Giveaway is International. Ends April 24th at 11:59 PM EST

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Cover Reveal – The Final Book: Gods

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About the Author:

Sean William Hammond is the author of The Final Book: Gods and The Mixtape Manifesto: A Pop Culture Confessional. He is also a freelance writer contributing to music zines, adventure and lifestyle magazines, and new media technical websites across the world. On his official website, SWHammond.com, you’ll find a mix of his articles, essays, and personal memoirs that encompass pop culture, politics, relationships, and thoughts on life.

SW’s writing style, particularly within his commentary, is often compared to Chuck Klosterman with countless references to pop culture, especially music. Hammond’s honest approach creates an easy camaraderie with the reader, then tests the boundaries with sensitive subject matter. Philosophy, ethics, and virtue continually square off against an instantaneous hedonism celebrated throughout society—with Hammond in the middle, struggling to keep his head above water.

SW’s fictional writing makes a conscious effort to blend perception, rumor, and fact leaving the reader to question reality. His stories are often rooted in truth, taking place in historical settings or by playing on modern headlines, making use of common and relatable themes to drive home critical points about the human condition. Though grand, epic, and futurist, the backbone of his novels hinge on basic principles of morality, or lack thereof.

Hammond has a unique background as a music and sports industry professional. He has worked in the Commissioner’s Office of Major League Baseball as a Marketing Coordinator, was an Assistant of Arizona Operations in the Kansas City Royals farm system, and operated Spring Training stadium audio for the Los Angeles Angels. He is also credited as a Marketing Representative for Sony Music Entertainment, a Senior Tour Manager for the Vans Warped Tour, and an intern at WAR Records / United Interests Management.

Born just outside of Denver, CO in 1983, Hammond hasn’t settled down much since. Aside from Colorado, as a child he also lived in Maine, California, and Utah. As an adult he returned to Colorado and Utah, also adding Arizona and Nevada to the list. He has visited 49 of the 50 states, vowing to make it to Alaska one day soon. Seemingly only content while in motion, Hammond’s dream is to one day own a catamaran and sail it around the world. He currently resides in Las Vegas, NV studying philosophy at UNLV. Hammond has never been married and has no children.


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Title:  The Final Book: Gods
Author:  SW Hammond
To Be Published:  June 13th, 2017
Genre:  Fiction / Science Fiction / Mythology / Visionary & Metaphysical
Recommended Age:  16+
Content Warning:  Historical battles with swordplay and the violence / gore of war
Synopsis:
In the beginning there was love. The Goddess of Life in an elated romance with a beloved mortal. Her sister killed him. Their combined actions ripping a hole in destiny and plagued mankind with an age of unprecedented corruption, vicious holy wars, and religious absolution.
Though long forgotten by the mortals they serve, Zeus and his Pantheon continue to foster and protect mankind which is tearing itself apart—but even God isn’t infallible. After failed diplomacy, the King of the Gods is left with no choice but to take the persona of a modern man—the famed genetic scientist Dr. Hork. In an effort to preserve the future by reshaping the past, Dr. Hork uses Project Genesis—the transfer of consciousness—to send subjects back in time. However, not without devastating failures. Subjects of the experiment wreak havoc upon humanity until a familiar character is reborn to correct the course.
Reincarnated and ready to fulfill his true destiny, Joshua Bach is the catalyst the Gods have been waiting for—and Dr. Hork’s final beacon of salvation. Ferociously idealistic, the free-spirited young man struggles to come-of-age in a time and society ruled by money and corruption. Under the wing of the Gods, Josh rediscovers his purpose, along with a love that can only be considered timeless.
This epic blends human history, ruthless mythology, science fiction, and the supernatural to tell a love story of the future—bringing Gods across all faiths down to earth in the modern age and within your reach.


Excerpt From Chapter 23 – Transmigration – The Final Book: Gods
          “Seriously though, Billy. What’s going on? Unless you’re looking for a space monkey, what do you need me for?”
          “Give yourself some credit. I just thought you might like to come along for the ride. Unless this sort of thing is in Milan or Dubai, Pom could care less. Plus there’s someone there I want you to meet. Or rather, who wants to meet you.”
          Josh twisted his brow with confusion but remained quiet allowing William to elaborate.
          “Her little joke, attending the Space Symposium. She’s a longtime friend.”
          “So what, you’re setting me up?”
          William roared with laughter. “No, not that! She’s…she’s a very interesting woman. I told her how you and I have been spending a lot of time together, talking philosophy. We’ll just grab a drink after and say hi.”
          “That’s fine… But I still don’t get it.”
          William tried to explain. “She sees the world in a very unique way. I thought you might appreciate that. No big deal.”
          “Okay,” Josh agreed, feeling there was more to the story. “Let’s hope I don’t disappoint.”
          “Oh and, Josh”—William looked over at him—“let’s keep this between you and I. It’s nothing underhanded, just avoiding unnecessary trouble. Ana and I have a bit of history, which Pom is fully aware of, but it will always be tender… No sense in stirring the pot.”
          Josh remained silent, uncomfortable with William’s request. He didn’t like the thought of lying to Pom, as she and he had become quite close, just as he and William had. Also William’s infidelity irritated him; he couldn’t understand how someone’s eye would be able to wander with a woman like Pom at home. But, most importantly, he was disappointed that William placed him in the middle. Regardless of William’s affairs, Josh didn’t want to be an accessory to something that could potentially upset Pom.
          “I know what you’re thinking,” William said, “and it reaffirms my decision for you to meet Ana. I know you’ve grown close with Pom. I also know you’d do things differently than me, and that’s why I’m proud to call you my friend. But life isn’t so cut and dry, Josh. Temptation isn’t your vice…” He paused as he tried to conjure up the appropriate words. “Without Ana, we wouldn’t have our amazing daughters who have had a tremendous impact on the world. I’m not exaggerating when I say that those girls have changed the lives of millions of people. The world is a much better place because of my weakness. Yes, that came at the expense of Pom, but what’s the greater good? What’s most important?”
          William had never opened up to Josh about his personal affairs and Josh wasn’t quite sure how to respond. He felt tremendous objection with William’s rationalization of his actions, but didn’t want to outright judge the man.
          “I don’t know, Billy,” Josh began. “Honesty is usually the best policy. It sounds like you’re justifying poor judgment by the serendipitous outcome of superb offspring… I mean, what if your children with Ana grew up to be heinous, or even normal. Would those ends justify the means?”
          “Well, that’s the odd thing about destiny: it’s inevitable,” William replied. “Those girls had to be born, they were needed. Destiny exploited my weakness, a character flaw of mine, in order to put forth what the world needed.”
          “Wow,” Josh said, taken aback by William’s explanation. “You’ve done a lot of great things, Dr. Hork, almost other worldly things. But you’re speaking as if you’re chosen. The odd thing about destiny isn’t that it’s inevitable, but it’s that we don’t know what it is. It’s not like we have a map or checklist of the future.”
          “But what if you did? What if you did know your destiny? Would that still make my actions dishonorable? Knowing the outcome of the greater good?”
          Josh turned to look out the window. “You’re suggesting that you have a crystal ball and there’s only one way to do things. That almost makes it worse. Knowing your destiny and still not finding an honorable or honest solution with Pom to achieve the same outcome.”
          William remained quiet, allowing Josh to explain himself.
          “Destiny is an excuse for poor actions,” Josh continued. “It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. You believe in your destiny, so therefore you actively seek it out, and it eventually becomes you. By adding the ‘cosmic mystical’ element, you relinquish accountability and responsibility. You just blame your actions on the gods. It was their will for you to sleep with that woman, not yours.”
          “How would one honorably explain conceiving a child with another woman?” William asked, looking over at him out of the corner of his eye.
          “That’s my point—you can’t now. Honesty has to start from the beginning. If you knew that infidelity or flesh of another is your vice, perhaps you shouldn’t have married. It’s selfish, Bill. You placed your desire—your ‘destiny’—above your wife.”
          There was a long pause.
          “Who’s to say you couldn’t have had those amazing daughters, who changed the world, with Pom?” Josh added.
          “Their mother for one,” William quickly replied. “Those girls aren’t great because of me, it’s because of Ana.”
          Josh was silent, still looking out the window to avoid William’s eyes.
          “You’re right, though,” William muttered. “I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t handle things properly. I hurt Pom, and I’ll always feel terrible for it. I wish I had as much wisdom at your age…”
          Josh sighed. “Billy, I wasn’t trying to insult you. You and Pom have your own relationship and arrangement. I don’t know the complexities and it has nothing to do with me… I just don’t like being put in the middle.”
          “Fair enough,” William said as he stared blankly through the windshield. “Sometimes I forget who I’m talking to. Someone who actually practices what they preach… Speaking of preaching, I guess you’d have to believe in God to believe in destiny, then?” He eased the conversation away from his personal affairs but was enjoying Josh’s thoughts on morality.
          “Abstractly, destiny’s just a really fortunate excuse for a lot of people to do a lot of bad things. That’s the problem with man mingling with Gods, or religion.”
          William was intrigued. “Explain.”
          “Beyond diminishing personal accountability, an unintended consequence or not, once you cut through all of the ritual and teachings, the bottom line is that religion completely devalues life. The entire premise of there being something after this world inherently makes the existence we’re currently living less important or less precious. With the promise of something more after life, something greater, it makes death much easier to accept.”
          “Interesting observation.”
          “A religious authority, priest or bishop, can paint the picture of a glorious afterworld and use that to manipulate followers into either being good to one another, or to wage horrific wars. If you die along the way, which we all will one day, that’s actually a good thing because now you’re home with God. And who doesn’t want to be with God?” Josh said sarcastically.
          “Why do you think people go along with this notion?”
          “They’re seeking a cause and effect to existence, an explainable reaction. They try to understand unfathomable things that happen during life, creating reasons to justify man’s relevance on a cosmic level—usually by attributing their lives to a larger concept such as religion or destiny. The only way to ease the guilt of bad decisions, things that can’t be reversed or reconciled here on Earth, is to atone to an unearthly being. The thought of being completely insignificant in the universe is more difficult for the human mind to accept than a utopia governed by a bearded man in the clouds.”
          “So I take it you don’t believe in God, then?” William cocked his head with the question.
          “I’m not foolish enough to say that. I can tell you with all certainty that I don’t believe in any religion operated by a mortal man, but I’m wise enough to say that I don’t know about God. I’m able to admit that I don’t understand. My mind is completely open—literally anything is possible because I have no way of knowing one way or another.”
          “Without God or a greater purpose, what’s the point of getting out of bed?” William pushed.
          “By having tremendous value and respect for the life you currently have,” Josh replied. “By understanding that being alive is completely unique and precious—something to be worshiped, to be celebrated. Our singular personal existence in the vast universe is so rare, so exponentially unlikely, that it shouldn’t be wasted by lying in bed. You won the lottery just by being born.”
          “That’s a pretty sober way to look at things. Uncomplicated.”
          “I think that’s a big problem with religion as we have it, it’s been manipulated into a tool of social control and discipline rather than a source of profound thought on the human experience. When did the belief of God become synonymous with marriage or shellfish, even goodwill or war? God doesn’t have anything to do with those things.”
          “Or interchangeably he has everything to do with all things…” William added.
          “Right. And that’s a completely valid argument as well,” Josh agreed. “But remember that slippery slope because you can’t pick and choose God’s miracles. If he has everything to do with all things, then he’s then equally responsible for healing the sick as he is for murders at an elementary school shooting.”
          “What do you think, Josh?” William questioned him intently. “Do you think God has something to do with the murders of children?”
          Josh took a deep breath and tried to articulate an answer. “No. My vision, or ideal of what God is or would be, wouldn’t be involved in that. I feel that God is removed from our daily activities. I see him as a creator and protector of humanity, but not as a personal babysitter. While he may have given life, he’s not in control of my soul or who I am. I don’t feel he has any interest in or control over my personal ‘destiny,’ though I’m sure he wishes general goodwill to everyone—like a father wishing his sons the best in life, though boys can still grow up to become murderers and rapists… I don’t know what God is…” He then hesitated. “I’m not sure if he’s from the ‘other side’ or if he’s just from another world… Maybe that’s one in the same? I don’t know, I see him being more human than a fairy tale. He couldn’t have been perfect if he created us in his own image.”
          William let out a wild grin and found a bit of humor in Josh’s comment on perfection. His approval encouraged Josh to keep going.
          “You know how history tends to paint a glorious picture of the past, elevating certain battles or men above the rest—like our founding fathers? Somehow the realism of them as humans, with all of their many imperfections, mistakes, and outright terrible deeds have been lost over time? I think that’s happened with God exponentially over the thousands of years. We choose to only remember the good stuff.”
          “Your God sounds pretty down to Earth,” William said, as he continued to smile. “He could be living among us and we wouldn’t even know.”
          Josh smiled back. “Of course. Or, you know, we could have evolved from sludge… Here’s one thing I don’t get about modern religion. God has helpers—angels, right?”
          William nodded.
          “So basically the whole monotheism and polytheism is pure semantics. Everyone knows Zeus was king, or the Abrahamic God is big chief god, so what’s wrong with showing his helpers, Poseidon or Gabriel, some appreciation? All of the religions have ‘angels’ or saints that perform the same functions as the Greek and Egyptian ‘gods,’ yet it was worth killing everyone and decimating cultures over that nonsensical subtle difference.”
          “Religion isn’t about logic, it’s about faith.”
          “I guess that’s my problem. I have an unwavering belief and faith in life. I think God does, too—that’s why he bothered creating it.”
          “The end doesn’t justify the means…”
          “Exactly. Faith is an awesome thing, having belief in something is powerful and unifying. However, when that faith is tied to an organization that is responsible for millions upon millions of deaths throughout history, the little bit of good they do does not outweigh the bad. It has nothing to do with forgiveness or reform, some things just simply can’t be undone. Faith and ideology are not justifiably worth dying or killing over, and I’ve never understood how someone can convince themselves that it is.”
          “What could be more honorable than dying for God?” William asked.
          “Are you serious?” Josh scoffed. “God doesn’t want you to die for him, that’s not why he made you. That’s like fucking to preserve virginity. He didn’t create humans so they would kill each other over abstract concepts. Dying to protect life—the thing God created—or fighting against the oppression of the inalienable rights of life, I’d consider that much more honorable.”
          “Kind of like our government, then.”
          Josh rolled his eyes. “If you believe in the liberation of oil fields and other strategic resources, sure. The government doesn’t care about life unless it can tax it. Our government took a crafty lesson from religion. It has exploited the fundamental concept of freedom to propel its own agenda. Instead of using the word ‘god’ like religion does, they just insert the word ‘freedom’ and the propaganda is the same.”
          William chuckled. “You don’t believe in government or religion… What’s left, anarchy?”
          “As soon as any organization—religion, government, corporation, nonprofit, or a person starts to manipulate their own beliefs to acquire power, conceal motives or agendas, lie, threaten, oppress, condemn—it’s corruption, Bill. I can’t support an institution that’s lost its virtue.”
          “The picture of young Joshua Bach is becoming a bit clearer,” William remarked. “Such principles aren’t going to make life easy.”
          “Tell me about it. I’m basically thirty years old and can barely support myself. I can’t stand our financial system… Do you know how hard it is to not have a cent of debt to your name? The bank isn’t my master. I refuse to be a part of an institution that is more concerned with share prices than the product they’re creating or service they’re providing.”
          “That’s noble, but not entirely realistic.”
          Josh raised his voice. “Why not? All it takes is for people to stop believing. Just as religion can’t exist without faith, neither can our system. If people, one by one, no longer allowed their good intentions to be exploited, no longer fed a system that was corrupt and broken—it would vanish. It can’t operate unless people believe in it and perpetuate it.”
          “I suppose that’s easier to say if you have nothing to lose.” William paused. “If you had a business, house, family—established roots into the system, it’d be harder to turn your back on it.”
          Josh was silent for a moment, then continued. “I agree. You know the types of things I think about? I’m afraid that I’m too poor to fall in love. Not only would I have to fully step into the corrupt system—meaningless job, underwater mortgage, vehicles with an expiration date—but if we decided to have children, I’d have to bring them into this cycle. I wouldn’t be able to afford a private school or tutors, so they’d be educated by one of the world’s most mediocre school systems—by design—that teaches them just enough to get by, so they can find another meaningless job and start the process all over again with their children. It’s so complacent. Everyone knows it’s wrong, everyone knows it’s broken, but no one has a gun to their head. There’s no immediate threat, so no one does anything. It’s a slow cancer. As soon as it gets bad enough to take action, it will be too late.”
          “You do have your freedom,” William’s tone was hollow. “What if your child breaks the cycle? It just takes one—Spartacus.”
          “Why can’t I be the One? Why my son? Why always the next generation?”
          William looked over at him out of the corner of his eye. “You speak of revolution, my boy.”
          “Billy, I don’t want to wage a war… I just want reform, an awakening. Has mankind always been so dishonest and self-serving? When did prophets become profits?” Josh said with bitterness.
          Another long pause filled the traveling automobile, as Josh looked through the window at the city streets intently with a grave scowl.
          William finally broke the silence. “I got you pretty worked up, didn’t I?”
          “I’m not asking for perfection, Bill. You and Pom are a perfect example. Mistakes were made, intentional or not, but at some point you had to be honest with one another. You had to agree on the future you wanted to create together and put the past behind you. You had to do what was right for your children, and I’m sure it was hard. I’m sure it still is. But look what you’ve done. Things at one point were broken, and you fixed them. I don’t know the young William Hork, but I know the man next to me now and there’s no one more honest and virtuous. You’ve matured into an individual with compassion, foresight, strength, experience and wisdom. You’re not perfect, but you’re damn close. I want that. I want that for man, for society. I want humanity to mature into what I know it can be.”
          William looked over at Josh and without question saw the man he once knew over 2,000 years ago. Sitting in his car beside him was the spitting image of the young Israelite with his soul on fire. His bleeding heart and passion had been masked by the youthful exterior, but there was no denying the complete transmigration of Lesous Nazareth into Joshua Bach. The young man’s words, his conviction, and his virtue made it clear to William that the second coming was upon him and that Lesous was finally ready to fulfill his destiny. 
          “I don’t know what to do, Bill.” Josh’s tone had become disheartened. “I don’t have a bottomless playbook full of answers, but you know when something is wrong or when it is right. The truth is absolute. It’s like the weather—you can’t control or manipulate truth. It just is.”
          William smiled as he pulled into the entrance of the Broadmoor Resort, where a parking valet waited. “I think Ana will be quite pleased I brought you. Long overdue.”
          Josh let out a deep breath of air, trying to calm himself. “I’m sorry, Dr. Hork. I usually don’t get so riled up, I prefer the rhetorical debates.” He then smiled. “I hope I didn’t offend you. You know how much I think of you and Pom.”
          William laughed. “Offend?  Josh, my boy, I feel as though I’ve been searching for your honesty for millennia! I enjoyed every word and know there was no malice behind it.”
          “I respect you. Pom, too. I just don’t want anything to mess that up.”
          “A man of conviction,” William said. “I crossed the line by trying to cover my own hide and you corrected me. I admire that. Not many have the gumption to speak up…to not allow someone to stand in the way of doing the right thing.”


Giveaway Details:


There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:
  • 3 signed hardcover advance copies of The Final Book: Gods.
Giveaway is International. 
Ends April 19th at 11:59 PM EDT

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Book Blast: Shine Your Light

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Title:  Shine Your Light
Series:  Paige Maddison Series, Book #3
Authors:    Lee Bice-Matheson and J.R. Matheson
Published:  November 15, 2016
Publisher:   FriesenPress
Genre:  Supernatural
Content Warning:   No sex. Clean read for Ages 10+ No drugs, no alcohol.
Recommended Age:  10+

Synopsis:  Paige Maddison is only 17 years old, but many know her spirit is ageless. She holds the gift of seeing beyond the layers of our reality, the courage to battle the evils that threaten to tear those layers apart, and the key to an ancient mystery that will decide the fate of the spirit realm, and our own, for another century.

In Shine Your Light, the third book of the Paige Maddison series, Paige finds herself precariously balanced between the mortal and spiritual realms, even while being haunted by events of the past. Surrounded by powerful allies, old and new, she discovers the true power of friendship―and the impact of its betrayal―as she faces her greatest challenge: the Prince of Darkness himself. The Ultimate Evil.

When a black moon looms over All Hallows’ Eve, and the battle for control of an ancient Grimoire threatens to destroy the world as we know it, Paige will be put to the test. Will love and goodness win the day? Will the strength and magic of her Celtic ancestry, the First Nations People, her Spirit Wolf family, or even divine intervention be enough to help her prevail?

Paige’s visions tell her that she is the Chosen One―chosen by fate, God, or perhaps the universe itself … but is she worthy? The ultimate battle between fallen angels, humanity, and the upperworld is about to be fought on Earth’s battlefield.

What if they’ve made the wrong choice?
Shine Your Light is on the Top 100 Best Seller for Teens and Young Adult Ghost Stories.
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | GoodReads

Chapter One Excerpt
Snowflakes danced and swirled beyond the windowpane, capturing the sun’s rays, glistening like diamonds as they drifted, mesmerizing me as I stood by and watched without a care in the world. Mother Nature had trapped me tight within her grasp. I was drawn into her beauty and magnetic, overpowering energy. Snowflakes accumulated, forming small mounds and snow drifts, and I viewed the scene as if through the lens of time-lapse photography. I sensed danger was near, yet felt warm and peaceful inside. And then I sensed nothing at all.
***
My instincts snapped me into a state of high alert as I searched carefully inside a dimly lit room, arms outstretched, hoping I wouldn’t bump into something and wound myself.

I blinked my eyes repeatedly and as my vision returned, images penetrated my consciousness. Eyesight sharpened, I spied a shimmering, oval, mahogany table with twelve handsomely crafted wooden chairs with etched frames and deep-cushioned red-velvet seats. The table caught the sunlight peeking in from beyond the dining room, through the kitchen window with its tiny panes of glass and lattice framing. It was of a time long ago.

I approached the back door and peeked out through a tall, narrow side window. I gasped as I spied a dense forest filled with 100-year-old pine, birch, oak, and black walnut trees all coexisting as one, their branches intertwined. Something seemed familiar about this place. I found my courage and it urged me to continue exploring my new surroundings. I passed through a low-set hallway and noticed two bedrooms across from one another. Each room contained twin beds, and I assumed the children’s room was the one with colourful quilts adorned with patches of birds and animals.

There were carvings in that particular room which drew me in. One carving was of a beaver, another was of a moose, and the third a wolf’s head. It was much larger than the others, and it captured my attention, as the wolf was a kindred spirit to me. I ran my fingers along its nose and felt the etching on its face, wondering who had created this beautiful work of art.
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About the Authors:

Lee Bice-Matheson began her writing career as a storyteller, often weaving tales for her son, J.R. Matheson. Her stories parlayed into a writing career that was united with her son’s creative imagination, as a mom-son writing team. It was her dream come true! Lee is proud to say they have coauthored Destiny’s Gate, Book Two, and Shine Your Light, Book Three. Lee is also the author of Wake Me Up Inside, Book One, in the Paige Maddison Series. It was the recipient of the Literacy Award from the Readers’ Advisory Panel, Orillia Public Library, and the Paige Maddison Series continues to be included in the Battle of the Books, Simcoe County. Lee is passionate about spirituality, and all it encompasses. She loves spending time in nature, and canoeing and portaging into Algonquin Park with her husband. Lee has degrees in Honours History, Master of Library & Information Science, both from Western University. She has worked in public, medical, and corporate libraries, and now works proudly with her husband, Kevin, in their Chiropractic Clinic.

J.R. Matheson has been writing fantasy and horror since he was old enough to hold a pen. Collaborating on the Paige Maddison Series has reignited his passion for creative writing. When he’s not weaving tales with his mom and coauthor, Lee Bice-Matheson, he can be found drowning in scientific publications and talking incessantly about his research at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in Toronto, Ontario, where he is a pharmacology PhD student. Some may claim that science and the creative arts are at odds, but J.R. feels they are one and the same.





Giveaway Details:
There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:
  • A print copy of Shine Your Light
Giveaway is US only. Ends January 10th, 2017

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Book Blitz! Fated Destinations

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Title:  Fated Destinations: A Romance Collection
Authors:  Susan Harris, Peggy Martinez, Kendra L. Saunders, Julie Wetzel, Kelly Risser, Melissa J. Cunningham, Sandy Goldsworthy
Published:   December 27th, 2016
Publisher:  Crimson Tree Publishing
Genre:  Contemporary, Paranormal, Science Fiction, Romance

Synopsis:  Escape from the everyday with this set of 7 all-new travel-based romances from award-winning authors. These exciting stories span the globe (and beyond!) to tell stories of love and intrigue in exotic locations. Take a mental vacation today with the Fated Destinations box set.





A Royal Problem by Julie Wetzel
Jessie is tasked with saving a set of jewels from pirates that attack her cruise ship. She jumps overboard and swims for shore, knowing only that she must find Lord Marcus at the majestic castle in Ospioria…


Mandatory Vacation by Kelly Risser
When workaholic Natalie Olsen is forced to take a vacation by her new boss, she books a cabana at the private island resort of Hibiscus Cay. But instead of relaxing, she finds herself intrigued by the handsome resort manager who seems to be hiding something…


Guide Me Gently by Peggy Martinez
Alyssa Monroe always dreamed of escaping to exotic locales as a photographer, so she’s thrilled as she sets off for Dasia Island. But only one guide is willing to take her deep into a forbidden forest… a sexy, tattooed local who sets her blood on fire and gets her camera finger itching.


Hawaiian Sunrise by Melissa J. Cunningham
Betrayed just before her wedding day, brokenhearted Jamie rents a bungalow on the beautiful island of Maui. Will the tour guide who shows her the island also be able to show her how to trust again?


Jessie’s Girl by Susan Harris
After she lost her mother to cancer, Maxine Fox threw herself into drugs, drink, and partying to cope with the loss. When she is expelled from her third school, her father decides to send her to a catholic private school in Ireland. But tattooed bisexual Max is probably not going to fit in easily…


Prisms by Kendra L. Saunders
The invitation was to a diplomatic peace ceremony on the desert planet of Quassdar. But Quassdar is also known for its steamy sex magick rituals, and it seems like Griffin may have gotten things a little bit mixed up…


Ashes Overboard by Sandy Goldsworthy
For graduation, Aubrey Sheppard’s fiancé gave her a dream Caribbean Cruise vacation. The only problem is, their relationship ended before the ship ever set sail. Now Aubrey—an inexperienced traveler—sets out alone, nervous and unsure. A shared cab ride introduces her to someone new, who’s also trying to move on with his life…


Read FREE with Kindle Unlimited!
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About the Publisher:

Our Commitment to Our Readers:
At Crimson Tree Publishing, we believe that our readers deserve to know ahead of time what they are reading. We do not believe in censorship; we believe in the right to know. Every reader, no matter what their age is, has certain boundaries they don’t want to cross. Currently there is no consistent rating system in place for books like there are for movies, music, and video games. We believe by offering a wider range of disclosure about the content of our books, we will give parents, and readers of all ages, a stronger sense of comfort according to what lies between the pages. With that said, we will not deem whether a book is appropriate or inappropriate for any particular age range. Our disclosure is simply for you to know what is in the book, and we leave it up to you to decide what you are comfortable with reading.


Our Commitment to Our Authors:
At Crimson Tree Publishing, we believe our authors, who create new and amazing literary worlds, deserve to receive a large share of the profits that their art creates. We also believe that our authors deserve the support of quality editing, breathtaking covers, and the power of a strong marketing presence behind them. As authors ourselves, we know that your writing comes from your heart and, in a sense, is a part of you. We will carefully protect that part of you and work hard to keep your creative vision alive.


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Giveaway Details:

There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:

  • winner will receive a mystery box from Crimson Tree Publishing.
Giveaway is US Only.
Ends January 1st at Midnight (ET)

Enter here!

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Author, Books, Uncategorized

Book Blitz: Goblinwraith

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Title: Goblinwraith
Series:  Olive Kennedy: Fairy World MD, Companion novella to Silverwitch
Author:  Tamara Grantham
Published:   December 23, 2016
Publisher:  Crimson Tree Publishing
Genre:  Romance/Fantasy, Fairy Tales, Folk Tales, Legends & Mythology

Synopsis:  Heidel, Wult warrior princess, is having a bad day.
First, a pack of wraiths chased her from a dragon’s vault. Then, the thief she traveled with, Maveryck, who was supposed to be a professional, lost the staff they stole. Instead of reclaiming it, he created a portal that sucked them into a nightmarish world full of noxious fumes and mechanical beasts. Earth.
To make matters worse, Heidel is now stuck with the incompetent thief in Paris, France, and they have no way to get back home. As if that wasn’t bad enough, Maveryck is keeping secrets from her—secrets about his past and his identity. Plus, he’s far too attractive to be trusted. She’s been on hellish quests before, but nothing has ever been more difficult than guarding her heart. And she’s pretty sure she’s going to fail. Miserably.


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About the Author:

Tamara Grantham is the award-winning author of more than half a dozen books and novellas, including the Olive Kennedy: Fairy World MD series and the Shine novellas. Dreamthief, the first book of her Fairy World MD series, won first place for fantasy in INDIEFAB’S Book of the Year Awards, a RONE award for best New Adult Romance of 2016, and is a #1 bestseller on Amazon in both the Mythology and Fairy Tales categories with over 100 reviews.
Tamara holds a Bachelor’s degree in English. She has been a featured speaker at the Rose State Writing Conference and has been a panelist at Comic Con Wizard World speaking on the topic of female leads. For her first published project, she collaborated with New York-Times bestselling author, William Bernhardt, in writing the Shine series.

Born and raised in Texas, Tamara now lives with her husband and five children in Wichita, Kansas. She rarely has any free time, but when the stars align and she gets a moment to relax, she enjoys reading fantasy novels, taking nature walks, which fuel her inspiration for creating fantastical worlds, and watching every Star Wars or Star Trek movie ever made. You can find her online at www.TamaraGranthamBooks.com.
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Crimson Tree Publishing Links:
(an adult division of Clean Teen)
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Giveaway Details:
There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:
  • winner will receive a mystery box from Crimson Tree Publishing.
 Giveaway is US Only.
Ends December 30th at 11:59 PM ET

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