Blog Tour & Giveaway: The Blue Unicorn’s Journey to Osm by Sybrina Durant

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The Blue Unicorn’s Journey to Osm
by Sybrina Durant
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy
Everybody loves unicorns! OK maybe they don’t but for those who do, they will
love this story about a little unicorn who was born into a tribe of
magical, metal horned unicorns. The little guy has no magic and he
has no metal but somehow he must save the tribe from an evil
sorcerer. Read the book to find out if he can do it.

The metal horned unicorns are doomed!” That’s what Lauda Lead Horn
wailed when she first saw the tribe’s new savior. OK, so his horn
was not metal. . .and he did not have a magic power. . .and he was
really a puny little runt. But doomed? Were things really that bad?
Well, things were pretty bad in the land of MarBryn. Magh, an evil sorcerer
utilized unicorn horns and hooves to create his magical potions and
spells. Those he used, to increase his power and to conquer everyone
in his path. All of the unicorns from the Tribe of the Metal Horn
were now gone . . . except for twelve survivors.
Before the blue unicorn was born, Numen told Alumna, the aluminum-horned
oracle, that he had a plan to bring the tribe back home to Unimaise.
His prophecy was, “Only the blue unicorn can join with the
Moon-Star. Until then, no new unicorns will be born.” Blue was the
last unicorn born. Twenty years later, his horn was still covered
with a plain blue colored hide. There was not a glint of metal to be
seen on it or his hooves. And he still didn’t have any magic. But
he was no longer scrawny and he had his wits. Though no one else in
the tribe thought he had a chance, Blue felt ready to make Magh pay
for his evil deeds. And he went off to do it alone. That was Blue’s
first mistake. If the entire tribe was not standing horn-tip to
horn-tip at the proper time and the exact place to help usher the
Moon-Star Spirit into Blue’s horn, he would die. Then, the rest of
the tribe would really be doomed.
Readers will follow along two journey paths in this book. Blue is joined in
his travels by his mentor Gaiso, the Stag and his friend, Girasol the
Firebird as they try to find their way across a danger-filled MarBryn
to Muzika Woods. The rest of Blue’s tribe is forced to follow
another route due to Nix Nickle Horn’s unfortunate incident with a
Manticore. Nix, the great unicorn defender must safely lead the way
for Ghel, the Golden-Horned unicorn; Silubhra Silver Horn; Cornum the
Brass-Horned unicorn; Steel Horned Style; Cuprum the Copper-Horned
unicorn; Tin-Horned Tinam; Dr. Zinko; Iown the Iron-Horned unicorn
and the others in an action packed adventure to their destination in
Muzika Woods. Both journey paths converge there in the Nebulium
Circle.
This chapter book is a collector’s dream containing page after page of
lavish artwork. It contains nearly 100 pages of story text by Sybrina
Durant and the same number of pages of magnificent water-color
illustrations by Dasguptarts. This book, written by Sybrina Durant
and illustrated by Dasguptarts, offers readers a visual feast of over
forty beautiful water-color pictures that each span two pages.
Forty-two – easy to digest two-page chapters are chock full of
adventurous and entertaining morsels. This illustrated book will
become a favorite of teen and older fantasy readers. A
companion coloring/ character description book is also available at
any online bookstore.
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Hi!
I’m Sybrina. . .. . .Just one of millions of wannabe
author/singer/songwriters out there but I hope, after reading or
hearing my books and songs, you’ll think my contributions to the
world have as much value as any other famous artist out there today.
Fame is all in being in the right place at the right time but at least
with the internet and venues like this, all of us have opportunities
to share our creativity with the world. I’m so happy that I am able
to share my works with you. That is awesome!
The books I’ve written span a wide range between illustrated picture
books, coloring books and YA novels to technical and how-to books.

 

Enjoy!
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Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive content and a giveaway!
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Blog Tour: Grannie Panties are Under Rated by Gayle Erickson

 

Chick Lit/ Women’s Fiction   *(contains language)

Date Published: June 6, 2017

 


Elle Martin has it all.

 Handsome and successful husband. Check.

Daughter and son attending exclusive private high school. Check.

Privilege, status, and wealth. Check, check, check.

 But there is more to Elle’s story.

 Already struggling to keep up appearances in a social set full of pretension and ultra-competitiveness, Elle’s façade of perfection is threatened when her husband makes an announcement that will force her to confront a dark past she has successfully hidden for years. 

 What will happen when long-buried secrets are unearthed and haunting new revelations are discovered? Will Elle find the happy ending she so desperately seeks?

 Toggling between the early nineties and the present day, Grannie Panties Are UnderRated captures the Gen X experience from latchkey kid to helicopter parent with keen insight and precision. A page turner full of surprising twists, it is a must read for anyone who has struggled to reconcile the chasm between the person they once were, the person they have become, and the person they long to be.

Amazon

Praise for Grannie Panties Are Under Rated

“…a highly entertaining and thought provoking book!”

“Gayle Erickson is brilliantly gifted in telling this engaging, sometimes disturbing, yet compulsively addicting story of a woman in crisis due to the bonds of the guilt-filled lens of her past”

“It is visually rich and culturally expansive,”

“You will fall in love with each of these honest, imperfect characters and identify with their struggles, demons, and challenges. Exposing the raw truths we often try to mask…”

“Loved this book, could not put it down”

“A great retrospective of how we come to be who we are and where we are, often without intention or a road map. Like “Grannie’s” characters, we all find moments of clarity or awareness, which give rise to change. All this and an accompanying playlist! A song for every chapter…what brilliant context!

 

Spotify Playlist by Author to complement the Novel:

http://spoti.fi/2sgkyqQ

 

About the Author

Gayle Erickson is a Colorado native and graduate of The Colorado College. She lived in Tokyo, Japan and taught English for several years after graduation. Upon her return to the United States she worked in the non-profit sector. Gayle currently lives in suburban Denver with her husband, twin teen-age children, and two dogs. Grannie Panties Are Underrated is her debut novel.
Contact Information

 

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Blog Tour & Giveaway: Welcome to the Apocalypse by DL Richardson

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Welcome to the Apocalypse
Book 1- Pandora
by D L Richardson
Genre: Apocalyptic Sci-Fi
The Apocalypse Games is a state of the art virtual game designed to
entertain doomsday preppers, gamers, and cosplayers. But not everyone
who enters is there to play the game the way the creators intended.
Some players don’t belong at all and some enter the game to escape reality.


Whatever the reason, over 100 people hook up to the mainframe computer with
one goal: survive twenty-four hours of an apocalypse. Instead of game
over at the end, they’re plugged straight into a new game. Then
another. It’s clear to the players the computer has malfunctioned.
What isn’t clear is why.
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CHAPTER ONE

Jack Minnow grabbed a brochure off the rack and his eyes scanned the back page.

“It says here that rule breakers are ten times more likely to survive an apocalypse. They’re adaptable and they rely on cunning and instinct.”

Jack was five-foot-eight, and the woman behind the counter, called an operator, was easily six-feet tall. Looking at her was like looking at a marble statue atop a pedestal. All white – her hair, her tight-fitting jump suit, her face, neck, and hands, painted to resemble a computer generated character. He allowed himself to imagine that the stage make-up covered places he couldn’t see.

She smiled at him. “It also says that rule breakers are ten times more likely to die within the first hour. They’re reckless and often act without thinking.”

She pushed a plastic tray towards him, the kind handed out at airports to slip under x-ray machines. Jack dropped his wallet, phone, and car keys into the tray.

“So it’s a win/win day for a guy with a superhero complex,” he said.

Superman, his mother had called him after he’d brought home a stray dog for the fifth time. “Can’t help but save things,” she’d told the dog ranger. Even as a boy, Jack knew what happened to the mutts who were handed over to the ranger, but he still brought dogs home for one last night of fun. His superhero complex was the reason he’d entered The Apocalypse Games. Save everyone. Save the world. Nobody dies. Not for real anyway.

The operator removed the tray and he stood there waiting for a voucher. None came. A warning flared up into his brain. What did he really know about this operation?

“Seriously, about those odds,” he said. “Exactly how much testing has gone into the program? I mean this is opening day. There must be kinks to iron out.”

“We use the same technology as they do at NASA,” she said. “The nutrient tubes and mist emitters feeding into the simulation pods are the same as those used in space travel. The structural integrity of the pods was tested by NASA engineers only last week.” She tilted her head to the side. “We’ll take good care of you, Mr Minnow. I’ll see to it personally.”

He didn’t know her name, or anything else about her, but he felt he could trust her. He had to trust her; he was placing his life in her hands.

She stepped out from behind the counter, slipped her arm through his, and guided him toward a set of doors where he caught flashes of shiny surfaces and bright lights. A sign indicated the room was called The Launch Pad.

“How will you see to it personally?” he asked, dragging his gaze back to her dazzling blue eyes. “Will you be in the game with me?”

She shook her head. Pity. He was sure he’d enjoy cyber-sex.

“You’ve got a good crowd here for the opening. How many players you reckon? Eighty? Ninety?”

“There are one hundred and five players taking part in today’s auspicious event.”

Jack’s mood sank a little. “Won’t it get crowded?”

She placed her other hand on his arm. Others might have found the gesture too friendly, but not him. Attention from a beautiful woman – genuine or as part of a customary service – warmed his insides.

“There are many apocalyptic scenarios on offer,” she said. “Some players have chosen to be placed randomly, in which case we’ll load them into scenarios that other players haven’t pre-selected. It’s highly unlikely you’ll all be playing the same game.” She stopped at a machine similar in size to an ATM and ran a laminated pass across the scanner. “I understand you’ll be teaming up with two other players, Reis Anderson and Kelly Lawrence.”

“Kelly’s my sister,” said Jack, not wanting to give the woman the wrong impression. “I’m being a good brother and chaperoning her.”

The operator nodded. “Have you chosen an apocalypse to survive? Or will you opt for the random selection?”

“I don’t mind surprises, but Kelly’s…let’s just say she’s a novice at this. We’ve decided to play—”

Her fingers swiftly landed on his lips. “Don’t tell me. If I don’t know then I can’t reveal any spoilers.”

She slipped the laminated pass around his neck and continued ushering him toward The Launch Pad. At the doorway, she gently pried her arm away and her azure-blue eyes twinkled.

“I assure you, Mr Minnow. You will be in the greatest of care. Please make your way inside and enjoy your complimentary champagne. It won’t be long until you’re taken to the simulation pod.”

The doubt still niggled at him. “So when we die in the game, what happens?”

She looked off to another player signing up at the desk.

“Miss…Operator?”

At last she turned around and smiled, revealing dazzling white teeth. “You can’t die in the game.”

“But it’ll feel like it. That’s what the brochure says.”

“Yes, it will feel like death,” she said before walking briskly away.

 

Continue reading

Blog Tour & Giveaway: Lucky Charmed by Sharla Lovelace

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LUCKY CHARMED
by Sharla Lovelace
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Pub Date: 7/18/2017
Charmed, Texas, is as warm and welcoming as it sounds. But even in a small
town, when it comes to love, sometimes you’ve got to take the
bitter with the sweet . . .
Carmen Frost hates honey. And bees. And in her hometown of Charmed, Texas,
which practically invented the stuff, that’s a problem. The good news is
that the summer Honey Festival is finally over. Even better, so is
the annual Lucky Hart carnival, a road show that made off with her
dreams years ago—including the boy she loved. Now she’s got a
divorce behind her, and a successful law career in front of her, but
in a tiny town, big memories die hard. Or they don’t die at all—as
Carmen discovers when she runs into an all too familiar pair of
eyes—older, wiser, and just as heart-melting as ever . . .
Sully Hart has had enough of the nomad lifestyle. Travelling with his father’s
carnival gave him adventures, but it cost him much more. Now he’s
home to stay, contracted to create an entertainment complex in
Charmed. He wants roots, a house with a yard and all the mundane
pleasures that go with it. But the girl he loved has become a woman
who still wants freedom. Can she still want him? It seems he and
Carmen are at each other’s throats one minute—and on each other’s
lips the next. Someone’s gotta give . . .
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Sharla Lovelace is
the bestselling, award-winning author of sexy small-town love
stories. Being a Texas girl through and through, she’s proud to say
she lives in Southeast Texas with her retired husband, a tricked-out
golf cart, and two crazy dogs. She is the author of five stand-alone
novels including the bestselling
Don’t Let Go,
the exciting Heart Of The Storm series, and the fun and sexy new
Charmed in Texas series. For more about Sharla’s books,
visit
sharlalovelace.com,
and keep up with all her new book releases easily by subscribing to
her newsletter. She loves keeping up with he
r readers, and you can
connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram as @sharlalovelace.
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for exclusive guest posts and a giveaway!
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Blog Tour & Giveaway: Dead Storage by Mary Feliz

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DEAD STORAGE
by Mary Feliz
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Pub Date: 7/18/2017
As a professional organizer, Maggie McDonald brings order to messy
situations. But when a good friend becomes a murder suspect,
surviving the chaos is one tall task . . .
Despite a looming deadline, Maggie thinks she has what it takes to help friends Jason
and Stephen unclutter their large Victorian in time for its scheduled
renovation. But before she can fill a single bin with unused junk,
Jason leaves for Texas on an emergency business trip, Stephen’s
injured mastiff limps home—and Stephen himself lands in jail for
murder. Someone killed the owner of a local Chinese restaurant and
stuffed him in the freezer. Stephen, caught at the crime scene
covered in blood, is the number one suspect. Now Maggie must devise a
strategy to sort through secrets and set him free—before she’s
tossed into permanent storage next . . .
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Thursday, February 16, Morning

“Maggie, we’ve got a crisis,” Jason had said the last time I’d talked to him.

“I know you insist on working with both halves of a couple—”

“But I’m also a problem solver. What’s up?”

“That spate of tornadoes and flooding in Texas, that’s what. I’ve been deployed. I can’t back out or delay our departure. Those people are hurting, and it’s the first test of my new auxiliary law-enforcement team. A group of TV journalists is reporting on our project for some newsmagazine. Our funding and the future of programs like this de- pend on our success.” Jason rattled off the sentences breathlessly, without giving me a chance to comment or interrupt.

I understood his predicament. He’d been working on establishing a rapid-response law enforcement team for as long as I’d known him. The short version of the saga was that the team, with all its supplies, could swoop into a disaster area and support law enforcement efforts under local authority. The idea was to prevent looting, keep people safe, provide skilled guidance to volunteers, and eliminate many of

the problems experienced by civilians, volunteers, and first responders following Hurricane Katrina and other disasters. Jason’s team and others like it hoped to plug gaps between what FEMA and the National Guard could provide and what community resources were designed to accomplish.

“No problem,” I said. “We’ll start after you get back.”

“Stephen’s ready to start, like, yesterday, and the demolition is only two weeks away.”

“Ah . . .” I began, stalling for time. “To be successful, any system we develop will have to include you. If it’s going to work long term—”

“Look, Maggie, I’ve got to go. They’re loading our containers on the cargo plane. Stephen and I talked about priorities and goals last night. We made a list. I gave him parameters for tossing my stuff, and I promised not to divorce him if he gives away my favorite baseball glove. If that works for you, great. If not, take it up with Stephen. Arrange something—”

The phone cut off. I was left with the decision of whether to begin or postpone. I spotted several potential problems with Jason’s plan. Among the stumbling blocks was the fact that they might waste time and money creating a system that would work for Stephen, but not for Jason. When I’d spoken to Stephen, afterward, he considered my advice but ultimately decided to go ahead.

“No matter what Jason says, he’s going to have trouble making time for this project, even once he’s home again,” Stephen said. “Damn the torpedoes . . .”

That was two days ago. I’d decided Stephen was right. With Jason’s full-time job as a police detective he was never in full control of his own hours. Stephen was a retired US Marine who worked unpredictable hours volunteering with veterans and their canine counterparts, creat- ing civilian partnerships. If we were going to have their house ready to start a major remodel, there was no time to waste.

Today, Stephen and I were meeting to start purging their belongings, deciding what to save, and fine-tuning our organizational strategy.

I knocked on the front door of their sprawling Victorian near the Palo Alto border. There was no answer to the bell. No resonant woof from Stephen’s huge mastiff, Munchkin. I peered through the front window, leaving the print of my nose on the glass. Only dust motes moved inside.

I sat on the front step and texted Stephen:

My calendar says we’re meeting at 8:30 today. Do I have that right? Continue reading

Blog Tour & Giveaway: Sin Eater by Alesha Escobar and Samantha Lafantasie

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Sin Eater
The Aria Knight Chronicles Book 1
By Alesha Escobar and Samantha Lafantasie
Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal
Aria Knight has an unusual set of skills: she will hold back the hounds of
Hell so you can fly toward the Pearly Gates, and she will wipe your
slate clean so that you don’t become karma’s bitch…for a price.


A Sin Eater has to make a living in today’s world somehow.
But when she’s called in the dead of night to perform her rite for a
recluse billionaire, she stumbles upon a murder scene, and the
evidence points to her.
In an attempt to clear her name and uncover the true culprit, Aria is
forced to team up with a private investigator who’s possessed by
three spirits, and a handsome wizard who would rather see all Sin
Eaters like Aria go extinct.
Aria knows her job is never easy, but now it’s become downright
deadly.
SIN EATER is the first book of the Aria Knight Chronicles by USA Today
bestselling author Samantha LaFantasie and Alesha Escobar, author of
the bestselling Gray Tower Trilogy.
**.99 on Amazon!!**
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Chapter 1

Aria

Aria would die tonight.

If Hessa didn’t unlock her damn door and let her in, that would certainly be the case. Aria’s back stiffened when she heard the faint but distinctive howls from the Hounds of Hell. Their shrieks always struck her as a cross between wolves wailing at the moon and jackals whining into the night.

Hessa finally opened the door and stood at the threshold, sizing her up and taking a long drag from her cigarette. A tear, mingled with ruined mascara, trailed down her cheek. “Thanks for coming, Aria. This was the last thing Mom asked for, so…”

“I understand. May I come in?” Aria nearly knocked her over trying to slip inside. The howling grew louder. They were down the street, and Aria’s time was running out.

“Yeah.” Hessa rolled her eyes at Aria’s terse attitude, but she’d do the same if she could hear what came their way.

“You should place a ward around the house.” Aria speed-walked down the hall.

“Okay…” Hessa’s voice trailed off.

She wished she had been called sooner. If the hellhounds made it to the dead woman before she did, then she’d have to watch them tear the old woman’s soul to shreds before dragging her off to the abyss.

Aria wrinkled her nose at the smell of wet fur and garbage. A small dog somewhere in the house barked a few times. As if drawn like a magnet to metal, she guided herself to the last room, toward the deceased. A short, white-haired woman in a long-sleeved gown lay in repose on a bed. Her arms were crossed just below her chest, with her hands meeting in a clasp.

Aria’s lips pressed into a thin line. She didn’t have time for this. She had told Hessa over the phone not to move or position the body. She quickly took the dead woman’s right hand and extended it, placing it to her right side. She did the same for the left hand, so that nothing sat on or near the deceased’s chest. She felt the moment Hessa cast her warding spell around the house. It felt like a stab of tension in her chest, the same type people felt when walking downstairs and missing a step.

“What was her name?” Aria asked, when Hessa joined her in the back room. She needed to know this in case she needed to grab the spirit’s attention.

“Lora.”

“Beautiful name. Do you have the bread?” Aria grabbed a rickety stool from the left corner of the room and brought it over. She sat down next to the bed. The hellhounds circled the house, probably salivating over their prey. Aria could hear their gleeful snarls at the prospect of devouring another soul. If she weren’t careful, they would tear into her as well. It wasn’t unheard of for them to go after sin eaters.

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I’m a caffeine addict and chocoholic who enjoys reading and writing
engaging stories, loveable (and not-so loveable) characters, and
expressing my creativity daily. I write fantasy with intriguing
characters, action-packed scenes, and always throw in a good dash of
humor and romance.
Science Fiction and Fantasy are
my favorite genres, but I also adore the classics (Shakespeare, Dante
Alighieri, etc.) and I have a soft spot in my heart for Victorian
poetry. You can geek out with me all-day every day over these
Some of my favorite contemporary
fantasy authors are George R.R. Martin, Robert Jordan (rest in
peace), J.K. Rowling, Neil Gaiman, Jim Butcher (Dresden Files made me
love Urban Fantasy), and Ilona Andrews among others. I enjoy movies
and shows like Sleepy Hollow, Supernatural, Arrow, The Flash, The
Avengers…there are too many to name!
I want to read more comics and
graphic novels, please shoot a recommendation or two my way (I LOVE
the Hellblazer comics, by the way).
Please don’t be a stranger–I
want you to kick up your feet, sip your coffee (or tea) and join in
on my weekly rants, discussions, and updates.
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Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts and a giveaway!
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Blog Tour & Giveaway: Erinland by Kathryn Berryman

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Erinland
by Kathryn Berryman
Genre: Epic Fantasy
Two troubled young adults find themselves key players in a deadly game
that spans the 21st century and the Viking Age.


Amy, finding it difficult to ‘fit in’, becomes increasingly obsessed
with the virtual reality game Erinland. The VR characters and the
mist of Erin begin to invade Amy’s dreams and her waking moments.
She finds herself drawn into Erinland in 9th century Ireland. Amy
becomes part of this mystical world as she joins in the struggle to
defeat the Viking raiders.
Richard has a complicated home life and feels he doesn’t belong anywhere. A
series of events finds him desperate and living on the streets, where
he finds himself dragged into 9th century Norway by a Viking warrior.
Richard finds acceptance with the Vikings and joins them on a
colonisation raid to Ireland.
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Chapter 1

The Beginning

The wind of the boglands howled, shrieking with the voices of tortured souls entwined with the steaming peat.

‘We must protect the chalice and the sacred writings!’ cried Niamh of the Golden Hair. The sound of her command­ing voice reduced the sound of the wailing wind to a frustrat­ed whisper. The woman wheeled her powerful steed around and galloped off towards the distant bog lights, leaving a flurry of mud in her wake.

The sign had come. Tadhg the great warrior knew that Niamh of the Golden Hair would only appear if the sacred relics were in danger of being destroyed and absorbed into the dark culture of the barbarians. He had to go to the Abbey and protect the sacred objects from defilement. A primal howl made him spin around to see the brutish face of his aggressor. Metal clashed against metal, war cries wailed, flesh and bone hacked until Tadhg fell on the battlefield.

‘AAARGH!’ Tadhg gasped, fighting for air as he sank to the ground, choking in the mire of mud and blood. Clasping his cleft sword, his breath came in ragged gasps then finally faded. Tadhg’s face and body contorted, shimmering as he slowly grew fainter and seeped into the boglands. It had been his battlefield and now it was his final resting place. A huge Viking towered over Tadhg, howling triumphantly. The howling continued until the whole scene faded to grey.

Niamh of the Golden Hair’s face popped onto the computer screen. Her serene voice came out of the speaker. ‘Erinland is at risk of disappearing. The chalice and writings have fallen victim to the barbarous Vikings. You have lost another incarnation. Be careful, small one.’

Amy grabbed the sides of the computer screen and shook it savagely. ‘Bloody hell, this virtual reality world is driving me crazy! I’ve lost another incarnation. Useless Irishmen, no wonder the Vikings invaded them. Stupid bloody Vikings, stupid Tadhg! Sacred objects? Yeah right, Niamh of the Golden Hair. What a load of horse crap! Tadhg needs a good kick up his hairy butt.’

‘Amy Bradshaw, stop that language at once! What do you think you’re playing at? I do my best to raise you to be a lady! Why do you think I send you to that expensive private school? Not to learn language like that! You’re a disgrace. When is the last time you brushed your hair? This bedroom is a garbage dump!’ The last word came out as a hiss.

Amy jumped at the sound of her mother’s voice. She thought her mother was in the kitchen washing up after dinner, totally out of earshot.

Amy’s mother continued with the tirade as Amy cringed on the bed. ‘Anyway, you are supposed to be doing your homework, not surfing the net. You’re banned from the computer for a week, it is only to be used for homework. Oh, and I’ll be super­vising you, so don’t get any ideas!’ she exclaimed.

Amy had to think of something quickly. ‘But, Mum, this is homework. In History we are learning about Vikings and how they were forced to migrate and invade other lands. It’s really interesting. We have to research their culture, art, and craftsmanship and what influence it had on the places they conquered,’ cried Amy. ‘I was researching,’ she added, trying to sound as indignant as possible.

Amy’s mother looked at her suspiciously. ‘Researching?’ she said a little more calmly. ‘Then why did I hear all that yelling and screaming?’

Amy thought she could sense a crack in her mother’s armour. She decided to weave a bit of truth into the lies—half-truths usually had a ring of plausibility to them.

‘Well … We have to go onto a virtual reality site to give us a hands-on view of life in Viking times. We make a village and even get to design our own Celtic jewellery!

On the virtual reality site, we learn how to simulate Viking warriors sparring with each other. I was yelling at the warriors fighting!’ she said.

‘You know about this, Mum! Mr Lord gave us the website details in our history class today, and I gave you the permis­sion note last week. Remember? Anyway, you can ring him if you don’t believe me.’ Amy uttered these last words in an almost accusing tone.

Her mother’s expression softened, slightly. ‘Oh, I see. Well … I suppose if it’s for school … But you know, I might just contact that Mr Lord. This research seems to be encouraging a bit too much passion in you. Now get to bed before I change my mind, and don’t forget to clean your teeth.’

Amy snapped off the computer and stomped off to the bathroom. At least she had fooled her mother into thinking that she was concentrating on her school work, which couldn’t be further from the truth. And she could still play Erinland without her mum knowing what she was doing. I could even buy one of those VR headsets to make the game more real. I bet Mum wouldn’t even work out that I had it! I wonder … She would probably find out sooner or later but it would be worth it, Amy thought absently as she spat the slimy residue of toothpaste and saliva down the sink.

She rinsed her mouth and splashed her face with cold water, staring hard at her reflection in the bathroom mirror. It wasn’t a bad face. Not too pretty, but not too ugly either. She imagined herself in ancient Erin fighting at Tadhg’s side, away from the bitchy girls at school with their bitchy texting and sniggering behind their hands. School. God, Amy hated school. School, no way! But talking to gods and minor deities? Protecting ancient manuscripts and chalices from the Raiders? She could live with that. She might even be a goddess herself! Niamh of the Golden Hair? No … Amy of the Spotty PJs! Yep, that would be fun. No bullying, no one to nag me to death, and I wouldn’t even have to clean my teeth, she silently told her smiling reflection.

‘Night, Mum,’ Amy called out.
Continue reading

Blog Tour & Giveaway: To Kill a Hummingbird by JR Ripley

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To Kill a Hummingbird
A Bird Lover’s Mystery #4
by JR Ripley
Pub. Date: 7/11/2017
Genre: Cozy Crime
For Amy Simms, owner of Birds & Bees,
nothing is more important than impressing her old professor, but this
odd bird is about to fall to earth . . .
When her favorite ornithology professor comes
calling, Birds & Bees owner Amy Simms hangs six hummingbird
feeders around the shop to welcome Professor Livingston with a flock
of his favorite flying creatures. But Amy soon finds that the sugar
water in the feeders brings more than a swarm of hummingbirds. It
also attracts murder.
Professor Livingston is just as friendly as Amy
remembers, but something seems to be troubling him. When Amy pays him
a visit that night, she finds the professor slumped over a table with
a pair of scissors buried in his neck. And standing over his body is
Rose Smith, the local bookseller, who claims she killed him. But
while the police believe they have a bird in hand, Amy thinks the
real killer may still be in the bush . . .
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I drove back to Bookarama. This time I was fortunate enough to find a parking slot right in front. Everyone seemed to be gone. The sign over the door was turned off, and the street was dark. Was I too late?

I shut off the ignition and hurried to the entrance. A couple of lights were still on inside toward the back. The door was unlocked. I went inside. Several paperbacks were scattered on the floor between the door and the sales counter. The folding chairs were just as they had been. I couldn’t see the signing table because the projector display screen had been moved in front.

“Rose?” I called. There was no sign of her or her daughter or any of the other clerks.

I headed for the table to look for the books Derek had purchased, thinking that maybe Mason had left them there. He’d obviously returned to the campground. Rose came from the storeroom, pulling a long, rolled-up rug the color of a purple finch. She dropped the heavy rug at her feet when she saw me. The plank floor shook. Her eyes flew to her right, and my eyes followed. Mason Livingston was seated at the signing table. His torso drooped forward and his head rested on the table. A pair of scissors protruded from his neck.

Rose bit her lip. “He’s dead. I killed him. And I’m glad he’s dead.”

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In addition to writing the Bird Lover’s
mystery series, J.R. Ripley is the critically acclaimed author of the
Maggie Miller mysteries and the Kitty Karlyle mysteries (written as
Marie Celine) among other works. J.R. is a member of the American
Birding Association, the American Bird Conservancy, and is an Audubon
Ambassador with the National Audubon Society.
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Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!
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The Amazon purchase link in this post is an affiliate link. Purchasing through it helps sustain Bound 2 Escape.

Blog Tour & Giveaway: A Necessary Lie by Lucy Farago

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A NECESSARY LIE
by Lucy Farago
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Pub Date: 7/25/2017
The Investigative Collection Unit is one of the world’s most renowned
agencies, solving cases with—or without—the law on its side. And
the Unit’s men are special agents in more ways than one, with
secrets that can make or break them—and the hearts of those who
fall for them . . .
He’s known only as Cowboy. A successful rodeo star with a string of women behind him,
the ICU has given him a chance to stay put instead of constantly
running away—from the past, from love, from the blood on his hands.
And he’s not going to screw that up, even if it means going back
home to Texas to investigate the disappearance of the woman who made
him start running in the first place . . .
The political exposé of a popular senator should have been Grace Irvine’s story,
but she thought it would be good for her best friend Jessie’s
career. Now, Jessie is missing and Grace will do anything to find
her. But her path keeps crossing with a mysterious and charismatic
cowboy who has his own reasons for finding Jessie. And as intrigue
draws Grace and Cowboy deeper into danger, passion starts to play by
its own rules—making promises it might not be able to keep . . .
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Cowboy stared at the name in the file handed to him by his pain-in-the- ass boss. Was this a joke? If so, what the fuck? Then again Ryan Sheppard wasn’t one to play games, at least not when someone’s life was at stake. “What would you like me to do with this?”

“Read it. It involves your new case,” Ryan said, looking up from the pile of papers on his desk, apparently confused by Cowboy’s reaction.

Maybe he was totally clueless as to what that name meant to Cowboy.

You could never be certain how much the dickhead knew.

He slid the file across the black marble desktop, back to Ryan. “I don’t do missing people.” That wasn’t entirely true, but his expertise was more about being the go-to guy. Whatever the team needed to get the job done, Cowboy found. A tank, halfway across the world by noon? No problem, he had a guy. Time-sensitive explosives? He knew a guy who knew a guy. Shit, he knew a guy for most anything. That metaphorical little black book had become his way of life because if you couldn’t do it yourself, you had to find someone who could. It had been this way since he’d started surviving on his own at fourteen. But taking a lead on a missing person, especially this missing person, nope, not his thing. Although    he had to admit he was curious—ok, more than curious—why Jessica Cook went missing.

“It’s not what we’ve been hired to do,” Ryan was saying. “Not entirely.

You’re to keep an eye on the missing woman’s friend.”

“And nor am I a babysitter.”  That  was  a  job  for  Dozier.  Strong and silent, with hawk eyes; compared to him, panthers were pets that slept on your bed.

“You are now. Everyone else is either busy or not qualified.”

“Then give this to Beck. It’s what he lives for.” His fellow operative, Christian Beck, had a knack for finding and retrieving missing or kidnapped victims and dealing with damsels in distress.

“Can’t. He’s asked for time off. His wife is expecting their first child and he doesn’t want to leave her side.”

“It’s a baby, not a ticking time bomb.” Sheesh, he’d met Christian’s wife. She was no shrinking violet. He slung a booted ankle across his knee to stop it bouncing, hoping to God he wasn’t coming off as antsy as the name on that file made him. Continue reading

Blog Tour & Giveaway: Elemental Trials by Ronelle Antoinette

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Errant Spark
Elemental Trials Book 1
by Ronelle Antoinette
Genre: Fantasy Romance
They say to keep your friends close and your enemies closer, but In
Egalion’s Imperial court, you can’t tell one from the
other…especially when they change at the flip of a coin. Behind the
luxury and splendor lies a realm of treachery where cloak-and-dagger
political maneuvering threatens to destroy the peace of two thousand
years.


Twenty-five-year-old
Battlemage Jex Xander has a mouth that frequently gets him into
trouble, while in contrast, Enari Namelum speaks not at all. When Jex
becomes the target of a faceless curse-slinger, Enari, the girl he
has protected since the day they met, must now protect him. A string
of ritual human sacrifices coupled with Jex’s growing inability to
keep his feelings (and hands) to himself only serve to complicate
matters. Amidst the mounting chaos, passion and romance should be the
last thing on their minds, but life and the Goddess seem to have
other ideas.
In a world as enticing as it is perilous, love, danger, and magic will
collide, leaving lives irrevocably changed. The events of a single
summer stand to change the course of more than just the kingdom of
Egalion and the ones dismissed as pawns may yet prove to b the most
important players.
Errant Spark is the hush before the storm, the last deep breath before the
plunge. The flint has been struck and it’s possible the whole world
might go up in flames…because love in the Imperial court is as
dangerous a thing as backroom politics and jealousy can be as much a
driving force as silver and gold.
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Fantasy? Action? Romance? Yes! This romantic fantasy novel by Ronelle
Antoinette is a broad, epic, sweeping fantasy with more twists and
turns and ups and downs than a wild roller-coaster! The first
installment of the Elemental Trials series is one of those books that
really is so much more than what the blurb can convey. Described as
“surprisingly complex and visionary” by one reviewer, Errant
Spark will leave you mesmerized from the first page to the last.
Hailed by Amazing Stories Magazine’s Ricky L Brown as “a simple story
about interesting characters with just enough romance and magic to
make it work.” Errant Spark is as complex as George RR Martin, with
a world that is well-suited for conniving and cavorting. Rest
assured, there is plenty of sex and violence, but not as raw and
stabby as the aforementioned works. It’s more like a big kid’s
version of a fairy tale.
Recommended for:
Mature teens and up
Fans of epic fantasy and romance
Those looking for characters they want to eat…or take home and enjoy
Readers who can appreciate a gorgeous tapestry of magic, myth, and
mayhem
Connoisseurs of fine love stories that compliment the plot and that ‘slow
burn’
Lovers of surprises, twists-and-turns, and well-placed, necessary
supernatural elements
Anyone looking for sex, magic, love, fantasy, and a story that will sweep
you away
Those who don’t mind staying up all night so they can turn that final
page
Update:
As of 11/21/16, a series glossary has been included at the end of
this novel (in ebook and print form only).
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“May I join you?”

Without waiting for a response, Jex Xander settled gracefully to the ground beside her. He offered her a tin cup and she took it, warily examining the contents.

“You have the look of someone who could use that.” He jerked his chin at the cup before turning his attention to his own bowl of stew and chunk of bread.

Chamomile and meadowsweet wafted up on the steam and she inhaled appreciatively, but didn’t drink.

“Oh, I almost forgot!” Fishing a flask out of his pocket, the mage unstoppered it and leaned over her, pouring a small amount of something brownish into the tea. “Not the best quality, I’m afraid, and I know it smells vile, but it’ll take the edge off your sore muscles, I promise.” He grinned at her startled expression before settling more comfortably and beginning to eat heartily.

Enari took a tentative sip and tried not to gag. It was horrid, but the warmth that spread in her belly was soothing, so she continued to drink. They sat in silence for several moments as stars twinkled to life overhead. A few even shot brightly across the sky and Enari watched them, still awed at the sheer immensity of the view above her. At the Temple, parts of the night sky had always been obscured by foliage, even when viewed from the high branches of the trees she climbed.

“Mmm, Plamen works his forge tonight,” Jex observed around a mouthful of bread, “Wonder what he’s making?”

Enari didn’t answer and after a moment, he tried again.

“Did the kvinna speak truth? Are you really still a novice?” He used the remaining crust to mop out his bowl before licking his fingers and wiping them in the grass beside him.

She nodded, still not looking at him.

“May I ask how old you are?”

It was a rude question to ask a woman, he knew, but he’d been watching her all afternoon and hadn’t been able to guess her age. ‘Young’ was all he’d determined for certain. Probably too young. Continue reading