Saturday, November 30, 2013

18 Author Feature: Andrea Cooper

        

Viking Fire Blurb: In 856 CE, Ireland is a land of myth, magic, and blood. Viking raiders have fought the Irish for over half a century. Rival Irish clans promise only betrayal and carnage.
Kaireen, daughter of Laird Liannon, is suddenly forced into an arranged marriage with her sworn enemy, a Viking. She refuses to submit. With no mention of love, only land and the protection of her clan, she endeavors to get her betrothed banished from her country. Will love find its way around her stubborn heart?

Bram, the Viking, finds himself without future or inheritance as a younger son in his family. A marriage to the Laird’s daughter would grant him land if he swears fidelity and if his men will fight along with the Liannons against any foe—Irish or Viking. However, the Laird’s feisty daughter only holds animosity for him and his kind. Is marriage worth the battle scars of such a relentless opponent?

With the blame for a rival laird’s death treacherously set against the Liannons, Kaireen and Bram must find a way to lay aside their differences as an unforeseen darkness sends death snapping at their heels. 

Viking Fire Excerpt
Chapter One Ireland 856 CE (condensed)

“I renounce Father for this.” Kaireen threw the elderberry gown.

“Shame on you and your children for speaking such.” Her handmaid, Elva, gathered the damask and then dusted off the rushes. “It’s a wonder one of the clim has not scolded you from your hearth for such talk.”

“No, curse Father for a fool.” She plopped on her bed and a goose feather floated away. With a huff, she leaned against the oak headboard. Red curtains puffed like a robin’s chest around oak poles supporting her wooden canopy.

Her bare feet brushed against the stone floor.

“You know your da arranged a marriage within a season.” Elva smirked.

Kaireen shook her head. “To another land holder,” and waved a hand in disgust, “not t-this heathen. Twice they raided our land in the last month alone. Now father wants me as wife to one of them?” She clenched her fists. “No, I will not marry this Viking.”

Elva smiled, reminding Kaireen of the rumors of her handmaid’s uncanny foresight.
Whispers of Elva making strange things happen and often blamed as the cause of
Kaireen’s stubborn refusal to behave as a laird’s daughter should.

“You’ve not seen him yet.” Elva wiggled her brows.

“So?” Kaireen shrugged. “I would like to never see him.”

“Well then, would you not like to know if you have a handsome husband or not?” She waited for her response, but Kaireen scowled. Elva chuckled. “I would rather get a good look at him now than the morning after.”

Kaireen’s ears heated. “I am not marrying.” She shook her head for emphasis. “So there will be no morning, nor night, nor wedding.”

“If he is handsome, I may fight you for him.” Elva smiled, deepening the wrinkles around her eyes.

“Welcome to him either way.” Kaireen laughed.
The Garnet Dagger Blurb: Everyone knows what happens when a vampire bites a human…but what if the victim is Elvin?
Forbidden to cross the Elvin barrier into human lands, Brock cannot sate his curiosity. Cursed by a vampyre bite that forces him to feed on the life-essence of others, he is unable to touch another without taking their life. Chained by prophesy, he must find a witch, pierce her heart, and draw her blood for his cure. 

Celeste must escape the monks who have held her prisoner for years. Her magic has been kept dormant by her captors. An ancient powerful Warloc craves her powers. If he succeeds in devouring her magic, she and his world will die.

When Brock falls in love with Celeste before realizing her demise is his cure, will love triumph over his desire to be healed? Will he risk everything to save her from a Warloc, an oath breaker, who also wants her dead?




The Garnet Dagger Excerpt:  Chapter One (condensed)
I’ve known death. For over half a millennia, I escorted many to death at the end of my sword. In the eyes of the dying, I watched it shroud them. Foolishly, I thought many more eras would pass before death came for me. It came so swiftly that I could not run; I could not escape. At a village, dressed in human clothes, I took in everything.
I delayed my return to my people as I watched human jugglers bounce torches and knifes. It was autumn equinox and the festivities would continue well into the night. Children laughed as they chased each other. A trail of leaves from their costumes twirled after them. It was dark when I reached the forest.
I hiked slower than my normal speed, so as not to startle whatever human called out. My leather boots crunched upon dried, diseased leaves and bark. Horrified, I glanced up. Branches twisted around each other to suffocating. Lifeless limbs cracked in the wind. Flesh of the trees sloughed off in layers, exposing its bones. Gashes hollowed out chunks of warmth. Fragments of leaves clung to finger tips, marking sepulchers of the dying trees. Trees mourned with wails like splitting wood, and I brought my hands over my ears. I must flee before I became infected, they told me. Flee before the stain of this defilement creeps into you, they warned. Trees spoke to my kind, always had. Yet these trees were in such agony of death that I could not breathe. Felt as though my lungs had folded in on themselves, like a moth unable to break loose from its cocoon.
Cooper, Andrea R. (2013-03-25). The Garnet Dagger (Crimson Romance) (Kindle Locations 60-67). F+W Media. Kindle Edition.



Andrea’s Bio: Growing up in Houston, Texas, Andrea has always created characters and stories. But it wasn't until she was in her late twenties that she started writing novels.
What happened that ignited the writing flame in her fingers? Divorced, and disillusioned by love songs and stories. They exaggerate. She thought. Love and Romance are not like that in the real world. Then she met her husband and realized, yes love and romance are exactly like the songs and stories say. She is now a happy wife, and a mom to three kids (two boys and a girl).
Andrea writes paranormal and historical romance. When not writing or reading, one may find Andrea dancing in Zumba.
She believes in the power of change and counting each moment as a blessing. But most importantly, she believes in love.

The Garnet Dagger Book Trailer  http://youtu.be/ISi0u9LoseM
Viking Fire Book Trailer: http://youtu.be/m1bPZ3nUyzs

Twitter: @AndreaRCooper
Author Website: www.AndreaRCooper.com

Buy Links:
The Garnet Dagger Amazon: http://goo.gl/rMEJ59
The Garnet Dagger B & N: http://goo.gl/Qp5i6A
The Garnet Dagger iTunes: http://goo.gl/s1Cugp
Viking Fire Amazon: http://goo.gl/71VAsf
Viking Fire B & N: http://goo.gl/EvBxwf
Viking Fire iTunes: http://goo.gl/fQuKBd


Thursday, November 28, 2013

0 Happy Thanksgiving


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

0 Review: Flo and Wendell by William Wegman

Title: Flo and Wendell
Author: William Wegman
Publisher: Dial
Published: September 26, 2013
Hardcover, 32 pages
ISBN: 9780-8037-3928-4
Genre: Children's Book
Source: Publisher (unsolicited)




Goodreads Summary:
Meet Flo. She’s a sophisticated big sister who’s part of a very artistic family.  She likes playing with paint and wearing sweaters her mother knits.  Flo also likes teasing her little brother, Wendell.  They play hide-and-seek, but Flo doesn’t look very hard.  They play dress up, too, but Wendell always gets the bad costumes.  Their parents wish they would get along, and they do try …sometimes.


My thoughts:
William Wegman has written several books for children, but if you have children, you may recognize the stars of this book from Sesame Street. Wegman is not only an author but also a visual artist. He applies both skills to his newest book Flo and Wendell. The stars of this book are also based on the names of two of his beloved pets.
In Flo and Wendell, Wegman tackles the topic of sibling rivalry at it's best. If you have more than one child this book will hit home. What Flo wants to do, Wendell doesn't. Flo and Wendell have different life prospectives  They do try to get along, but it never really works out, except for the one activity they like to do 
together . . . read. They're a cute duo that will warm your heart. This is a great book to read to and with your kids. They'll love looking at the visually stunning pictures as well as the story. Although they might want a Flo or Wendell of their own after reading this book.


My rating:


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

0 Guest Post: Why Write Interactive Fiction by Cloud Buchholz




Why Write Interactive Fiction?
Cloud Buchholz

  
Why did I choose to write an interactive story? (Good question!) 
Whenever I sit down to write, a certain phrase always comes to mind: Suspend your disbelief. You may have heard it when you watched a movie with a few too many plot holes or a meager budget (like when you can see the wires when someone is supposed to be flying).
As a writer, when I hear the phrase, I imagine the reader floating in a vat of slime like a mad scientist’s heinous experiment... I (of course) am the mad scientist eager to mix my words, like ingredients, into the goo. My diction, characters, and plot mingle with the helpless reader until I flip a switch and scream, “It’s alive!”
But then I thought...what if it was the reader shouting, “It’s alive!” What if the reader could don the lab coat and goggles? What if I could be their Igor, providing them with the components to create a monster of their own?
That’s when I remembered the Choose Your Own Adventure books I read as a kid. Each plot was a patchwork of choices that I had decided. Each ending was a Frankenstein framework that I had brought to life all on my own.
The story (my story) didn’t need to activate the reader. It should be the other way around. The reader brought the characters and worlds to life, not me. That moment, that spark, when someone chooses to read a book, is like a bolt of lightning, breathing life into the pulpy, printed lungs of a story.
“It’s alive!”
“It’s alive!”
And isn’t that what this blog, To Read or Not to Read, is about? As readers, you decide what words should be brought to life. You decide what wondrous (or monstrous) creations are released upon the townsfolk waiting with their pitchforks and fire.
Let me, your humble servant, scour the dark corners, coffins, and countries of the world for the ingredients you need. Let me, your unwavering writer, provide you with the words and worlds to create your own monsters.
Let us see what new creatures can be brought to life!




--------------------

Cloud Buchholz is an indie author writing on the California coast. He’s written a novel, Chewing on Pen Caps, a book of poetry, The American Idlers, and a novella, The Last Darling. His newest book, Seven Bullets, is available at Amazon.
You can read more of his short stories and poetry at: www.cloudbuchholz.com


Book Title: Seven Bullets

Genre(s): Choose Your Own Adventure (Action, Fantasy, Horror, Sci-fi, Thriller)

Word Count: 280,000

Book Blurb:

You’re a skilled assassin ready to retire, but before you can call it quits, the Boss kidnaps your little sister, and now you need to use your arsenal of deadly skills to get her back. Will you make the choices that bring her home safely? Or will you get caught in a web of intrigue, assassins, and deadly combat? Only you can decide how this story ends...Do you have what it takes to survive?

Seven Bullets contains 280k words, more than 470 unique choices, and over 80 different endings. If you’re a kid looking for adventure or a grownup nostalgic for the Choose Your Own Adventure books of the 80’s, Seven Bullets has what you’re looking for.


Book Demo: http://goo.gl/1LSnpW

Link to buy book: http://www.amazon.com/Seven-Bullets-ebook/dp/B00FXF0E30


Monday, November 25, 2013

0 Loveswept .99 Sale

About the Book:
As leftover turkey and stuffing give way to stockings and little black dresses, this tantalizingly sexy eBook bundle offers up holiday-themed novellas from a trio of beloved romance authors. Lisa Renee Jones gives a dedicated reporter and a powerful businessman a chance to count their Thanksgiving blessings in Play with Me; Mary Ann Rivers presents Snowfall, the story of a woman who confronts a life-changing event—hopefully with a special man by her side—just in time for Christmas; and in Serena Bell’s After Midnight, an explosive New Year’s kiss leaves two strangers wondering whether they’ll ever see each other again.

PLAY WITH ME by Lisa Renee Jones

Kali Miller has spent three years reporting fluff stories, waiting for the article that will launch her career to new heights. When she suddenly finds herself forced to take a job as an executive secretary at a Vegas casino, Kali meets the subject of what will surely be a shocking exposé: her boss, Damion Ward, the arrogant and undeniably sexy CEO. But after Damion invites her to help him plan a Thanksgiving charity event, Kali begins to see another side of the man. And when she surrenders to the exhilarating tension simmering between them, Kali hopes her story will have a happy ending.

SNOWFALL by Mary Ann Rivers

Jenny Wright can’t get enough of her erotic conversations with someone she knows only as “C.” Flirting online helps Jenny temporarily escape confronting the changes to her life as she slowly loses her vision. Jenny’s occupational therapist, Evan Carlisle-Ford, is helping her prepare for the challenges ahead, but the forthright, trustworthy man can no longer ignore his growing attraction to his fiercely intelligent client. Now Jenny must choose between the safe, anonymous “C”—or the flesh-and-blood Evan, whose heated kisses can melt snow faster than it can fall.

AFTER MIDNIGHT by Serena Bell

The clock is ticking down to midnight on New Year’s Eve, and all Nora Hart and Miles Shephard can think about is kissing each other—even though they met just minutes before. Then, as fast as Miles enters Nora’s life, he’s gone . . . and she never even gets the name of the man she thinks might just be “the one.” One year later, Nora and Miles are reunited. The chemistry between them is just as strong as they remember. But Miles broke her heart once before—and this time around, Nora’s not sure whether she can give love a second chance.

http://www.randomhouse.com/book/236096/heating-up-the-holidays-3-story-bundle-play-with-me-snowfall-and-after-midnight-by-lisa-renee-jones-mary-ann-rivers-and-serena-bell

About the book:
Dallas TV morning show host Madelyn Cornish is poised, perfect, and unflappable, from her glossy smile to her sleek professionalism. No one knows that her iron will guards a shattered heart and memories of a man she’s determined to lock out. Until that man shows up at a morning meeting like a bad dream: Billy Wilkins, sexy hockey superstar in a tailspin—still skating, still fighting, and still her ex-husband.
 
Now the producers want this poster child for bad behavior to undergo an on-air makeover, and Billy, who has nothing to lose, agrees to the project. It’s his only chance to get near Maddy again, and to fight for the right things this time around. He believes in the fire in Maddy’s whiskey eyes and the passion that ignites the air between them. This bad-boy heartbreaker wants a last shot to be redeemed by the only thing that matters: Maddy’s love.
http://www.randomhouse.com/book/217082/crazy-thing-called-love-by-molly-okeefe/ebook

0 External Forces Spotlight and Giveaway




Title: External Forces
Author: Deborah Rix
Publisher: Dime Store Books
Pages: 268
Language: English
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction
Format: eBook
Purchase at AMAZON


Treason, betrayal, and heartbreak.
A lot can happen to a girl between her first kiss and her first kill.
It’s 100 years since the Genetic Integrity Act was passed and America closed its borders to prevent genetic contamination. Now only the enemy, dysgenic Deviants, remain beyond the heavily guarded border. The Department of Evolution carefully guides the creation of each generation and deviations from the divine plan are not permitted.
When 16-year-old Jess begins to show signs of deviance she enlists in the Special Forces, with her best friend Jay, in a desperate bid to evade detection by the Devotees. Jess is good with data, not so good with a knife. So when the handsome and secretive Sergeant Matt Anderson selects her for his Black Ops squad, Jess is determined to figure out why.
As her deviance continues to change her, Jess is forced to decide who to trust with her deadly secret. Jess needs to know what’s really out there, in the Deviant wasteland over the border, if she has any hope of making it to her 17th birthday. Because if the enemy doesn’t kill her first, the Department of Evolution probably will.




Prologue:
I haven't slept in forty-eight hours.
It's part of the Special Operations Assessment and Selection course, twenty-eight days of grueling work. The two days of no sleep are meant to disorient us, part of discarding our former selves. There are three hundred of us trying to figure out how to do what we're told, when we're told to, and how to do it correctly. Jay and I weren't assigned to the same platoon, which was unexpected. I’m in the “civilian” platoon; we’re the ones with skills that don’t generally require brute force. I think Jay is in some kind of elite group because I haven’t seen him, I’ve only seen the G-men platoon. They are all about brute force; they’re the ones that opted for genetic enhancement at age thirteen without the supervision of the Devotees. But Special Forces is, well, special, so they have to prove they’ve got more than muscle and I’ve gotta prove I’ve got more than a quick mind.
If I don't make it to Special Forces, my life expectancy in the regular army could be pretty short. And if I’m a complete washout, I’ll have to go to my assessment with the Devotees and they’ll find out about me, making my life expectancy even shorter. I seriously need to pass.
Zero dark thirty is when I have to haul myself out of bed in the so-called morning. My drill sergeant has been yelling at me for most of the past two days. The word “why” has been surgically removed from everyone's vocabulary. Any individual hesitation in following orders means at least one private is getting smoked, if not the whole platoon, which usually means push-ups. We've done a lot of push-ups. I stare straight ahead as the drill sergeant walks by me and continues down the row of privates. I made the mistake of “eyeballing” him yesterday.
Never. Eyeball. A drill sergeant.

First Chapter:
Three weeks earlier – May, 2125

My mother thinks I'm a Deviant.
It’s the kind of thing that can really throw a girl for a loop.
The Devotees missed it when I was born, she said, but one day they would come for me. That was a few years ago, she didn't know I was home when I overheard her; I got out of there lickety-split.
And it's not as if I haven't noticed the way my mother looks at me sometimes. If they had taken me when they had the chance, maybe her other baby would still be with her. I'm pretty sure that's what goes through her head when she looks at me.
So the early assessment notice wasn't entirely unexpected. It doesn't necessarily mean anything. Lots of kids are called for early assessments and nothing happens; they show up at school the next day. Some of them are all excited because they got called to become a Devotee.
But some of them, well, they don't come back. 
I'm in the parking lot of my high school, West Liberty. It’s prom night, and I came with my best friend, Jay. He’s still inside; he likes this sort of thing. I haven't told him the early assessment notice came this afternoon. I didn't want to ruin tonight for him. The humidity has made my dress even more uncomfortable than it was inside. Jay owes me. At least he won't mind if I go home; it's not that kind of date.
A car door slams shut. There aren't a lot of kids who can afford the fuel to drive their own car to the prom.
Uh-oh. Blake.
I take a step back. Blake is a popular kid, with the right look, the right home, the right pedigree.
Right.
Despite my attempts to blend in and stay in the background, Blake noticed me this year. When I didn't respond like all the other girls do, I became his target.
His car keys jangle as he drops them in his jacket pocket. I stand still; maybe he hasn't seen me.
“Hey, freak,” he calls as he comes around the blue pickup I was hoping would shield me. “Not leaving, are you?”
I smell alcohol as Blake backs me up against the truck.
His slicked-back hair smells slightly astringent, and his tongue slides over his upper lip as he looks me over from top to bottom. A shiver of revulsion goes through me. I can’t imagine what girls like about him. I can hear some voices, but they're at the other end of the parking lot. It's just me and Blake.
“I've got an early graduation present for you,” he says quietly. His face is close to mine, and I can see beads of perspiration on his forehead. Slick from the humidity, his hand glides down my bare shoulder, as if he's entitled to touch me.
I don't think I want a present from Blake.
I'm surprised when my hand moves. There is a wet sound as Blake's head snaps back.
Blood spurts, and it seems as if time has gone into slow motion. The blood sprays toward me. I move my head to the side to avoid it, and watch it slowly drift by, suspended in the air.
I turn back to Blake and a thrill zips through me. Thick, glossy blood creeps down his chin from his mashed nose. His mouth is open in shock; blood colors his teeth and gums. He moves sluggishly, and each blink seems to take effort.
Drip by slow drip, the blood falls from his chin onto his shirt. Fascinated, I watch each droplet burst on his crisp white collar.
A wet plonk hits my forehead as a sudden coldness envelops me. The grin I’m shocked to find on my face sags. Fat droplets of rain release the pressure in the air and mix with the blood on Blake's shiny shoes.
Hands to his face, he doubles over as time suddenly speeds up again. The rain pelts down now. I take two steps to the side and run. I hear a sob and realize it's me.
What just happened?
It’s the morning after prom, and Jay saunters along beside me as we walk back to my house. I met him half way, as per my usual. His t-shirt is a bit wrinkled, but that's on purpose, to go with jeans that are a little baggy in back. He's over six feet and gets asked if he's a model, which he laughs at, but I know he's pleased. He could be quite popular if he wanted, but he hangs out with me instead.
Jay and me are Fifth Generation. We’re the ones born between 2100 and 2120. We found each other in the seventh grade. We were the last two kids left when we all paired up for gym class. He asked me why I wasn't moving when we were supposed to be heading out to the field. I explained that I was trying to activate my special powers so that I could use them to transport me far away. Usually that kind of talk would send kids running, and they’d whisper that I must be a Deviant. But not Jay. He blinked at me, then asked if I would take him with me, should my special powers ever actually work. We've been best friends since, and tell each other pretty much everything.
“So, can you come to the thing?”
Uh oh.
I think I’m supposed to know what he’s talking about.
“Uh, when is it again?” I stall for time. What thing?
I push my hair behind my ears to help me think. It doesn’t always work. I have shoulder-length brown hair, parted on the side. My no-nonsense look is how I think of it. I still don’t know what the thing is.
“Wait. Jess. You’re joking, right?” Jay says with a laugh that’s on the edge of anger.
“I’m sorry.” I do my best pleading cringe. “I’m a little distracted.”
The early assessment and whatever that was with Blake last night are the distractions. I can’t quite believe I punched him, broke his nose by the look of it. He’s probably going to have two black eyes. But more than that punch, as surprising as it was, is the way time seemed to slow down around me. I want to say it was shock, or some kind of temporary fugue state, but that’s not what it was. Something happened.
“My mother’s thing, remember?” Jay practically yells at me.
“Oh, that,” I say with relief. Jay’s mother is hosting a party to celebrate his seventeenth birthday. That’s what the thing is. It’s going to be awful.
“We met up, what? Five minutes ago? And you’re already trying to drive me crazy?” He pinches my butt. Hard. He’s pretty worked up about this party.
I yelp and dance around. “No way. You are not blaming your crazy on me.” I give him a solid punch in the gut. “You had years of exposure to your mother before we even met.”
I go rock climbing, so my arms are strong. I've never needed to go to the gym to work out and “stay in shape” like some of the other girls do. I’m five feet ten and a half inches and the coach at school said I have an athletic body; he tried to get me to go out for track and field. I don't like the idea of people watching me like that.
But hitting Jay is like hitting concrete. He doesn’t even notice my punch.
“And of course I’m coming, I already told you. That’s why I didn’t know what thing you were talking about. I thought you meant some other thing.”
“You didn’t actually confirm with my mother,” he complains, “and I know how you feel about people, in general.”
“I don’t have a problem with people, in general. Just the idiots,” I say. “And your mother.”
It’s kind of a toss-up, I suppose. A mother like mine, who actively avoids you and has already decided you’re not worth the effort, or one who pays too much attention and has too many expectations.
Jay nudges me as an unfamiliar dark-haired boy, a bit younger than we are, walks toward us. He doesn't look right at us, but he flashes us two crossed fingers with his right hand.
I look up ahead and see them coming our way. Three Devotees. Jay and I mumble the greeting in unison, “Blood of our blood, flesh of our flesh, soul of our soul,” and we look down as they brush past us in their crisp white lab coats. It's best not to be noticed.
The Devotees work for the Department of Evolution —everyone just calls it Devo— and they do the work of Creation in partnership with God. The Department of Evolution is under the direction of Secretary Galton. Basically, she’s God's voice here on Earth. In the midst of the genetic revolution a hundred years ago, when the Genetic Integrity Act closed America’s borders, strict protocols for border biosecurity were instituted to stop genetic contamination. But we were still in danger of being overrun by the Deviants on the other side. Galton took control, ordered the fortification of our borders and gave the military the authority to do what they needed to do. Most people agree; she did what was necessary for our survival by relinquishing certain powers to the military to ensure our protection. Including the ability to create proprietary, genetically enhanced soldiers. The G-men. Since then, Galton has been leading us through the current stage of evolution, Regenesis, removing unwanted traits and improving and enhancing our best traits with the guidance of God.
In Social Biology class, Devotee Theresa taught us that we must all work for the common good, whether we like it or not. The less intelligent are more fertile and must be discouraged from breeding. Only those with desirable traits are allowed to produce the next generation.
There's this section, practically a whole semester of tenth grade, where we studied pedigree charts, and DNA, RNA, proteins, and ribosomes. DNA is a double helix that carries the genetic information for all life. If only one part of one gene is wrong, it can create a whole generation of imbeciles, and that is not in God's plan. Or in Devo's plan. All Devotees have that DNA double helix tattooed on their forearm, as a constant reminder of their purpose in life.
That's what the crossed fingers warning represents, the double helix tattoo.
We come up to the old Palace Theater. It's been shut down for a long time, and the large sign that hangs out front lost its first A, so it says PLACE. Someone found a way in down the side alley, and now kids hang out there. They say, “Meet me at the place.” If they're overheard or an adult sees a message, it only says “the place.” So far it's stayed secret. I've heard they have illegal sim-seats in there, ones that can scramble the biometrics and mask what you’re doing.
“Jess,” Jay says as he slows right down, “something’s wrong.”
“It's time to wake up!” a skinny boy with curly red hair yells. He's standing on a wooden crate, and people are hesitantly milling about. “People are dying! Out there, children are starving, and you send them poison. People are sick, and you send them plagues. The blood of our blood is on your hands!”
There are gasps at his blasphemy, but a few people cautiously move toward him in morbid fascination. His eyes are wild, there’s spittle on his lips. Jay grabs my arm to tug me backward.
When the bullet enters the boy’s left temple, it's as if he doesn't know it’s there for a moment.
He's about to yell, his mouth opens, his lips form a word he will never say. Then he topples backward, and I hear the terrible thud as his head hits the ground. The people closest to him quickly step back. No one screams, no one looks up to see the Guardian with the rifle on the roof across the street. Everyone wants to blend in.
Another Guardian comes toward the Palace. The Guardians work for Devo and protect us from Deviants. The stiff collar somehow makes his slightly rumpled, brown uniform shirt look crisp. The yellow double helix is on the front of his cap, and above his left shirt pocket.
“Move along,” he says. “It was just a Deviant.”
We all know that the plain fact of his yelling out crazy stuff in the street like that is proof of his deviance. It’s what happens sometimes, but it’s most prevalent during adolescence. The deviance manifests and people become dangerous, psychotic Deviants, intent on our destruction.
The Guardian rests his hand on the butt of the holstered pistol hanging from his belt and waits for the brown panel truck with the whooping siren we can hear approaching.
Jay swears at him under his breath and keeps hold of my arm. We hurry off with the rest of the crowd, wanting to move as far away as possible. I look back in time to see somebody dart in behind the Guardian, dip a hand in the boy's blood, and leave an angry red handprint on the front of the Palace Theater. A red hand. I’ve heard the whispers but never thought it was true. As I stare at it, I bumble into Mrs. Yamoto, one of my neighbors. She walks fast, gripping her daughter’s hand tightly. Last year, I saw the brown truck with the double helix on the side parked in front of her house. The Guardians had come to take her son.
Wes.
That was his name.


About the Author:

Deborah Rix’s favourite position for reading a book is head almost hanging off the couch and feet up in the air with legs against the back of the couch. She’s been reading too much from Scientific American for research and ideas and needs to get back to some fiction. She has a long standing love of science fiction, some of her favourite authors include William Gibson, Philip K Dick, Kurt Vonnegut Jr, Douglas Adams, Iain M Banks. A bit old school.
Deborah enjoyed a successful career in entertainment publicity, live music promotion and event management. Which means she slogged through muddy fields for music festivals, was crammed into concert halls with too many sweaty teenage boys and got to go to Tuktoyaktuk (that’s in the Arctic Circle) for a Metallica concert. She lives with her family in TorontoCanada, where she is the proprietor of The Lucky Penny, a neighborhood joint in Trinity-Bellwoods.
External Forces is her first novel.
Visit her website at www.DeborahRix.com.
Connect & Socialize with Deborah!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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ACCELERATE YOUR POWER GRAND PRIZE
GRAND PRIZE: Winner will have a minor character named after them in Acceleration, the second book in The Laws of Motion Trilogy by Deborah Rix. PLUS: 1 (One) WakaWaka Power – a solar powered charger and light, 1 (one) Limited Edition EXTERNAL FORCES Black Ops Beanie, and 1 (one) signed copy of External Forces.
The fine print: Grand Prize winner will have a minor character named after them in the forthcoming book, Acceleration. The winner can choose a name other their own as long as it is mutually agreeable with the Author, Deborah Rix. That means nothing obscene, stupid or ridiculous, as decided at the sole discretion of the author. Winner agrees that the gender, race, physical description, sexual orientation or any other characteristics of the character are at the sole discretion of the author. Winner agrees that the character may suffer some sort of gruesome downfall or may be a heroic figure in the story, it is at the sole discretion of the author what the role of the character will be and to what extent the character will be part of the story. The author assures the winner that it will be a real character in the story and part of a sub-plot or major plot.
Terms & Conditions:
By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive the Accelerate Your Power Grand Prize.
This giveaway begins November 4 and ends January 31.
Winner will be contacted via email on Monday, February 3, 2013.
Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!
ENTER TO WIN!



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2 Covet November Releases and Giveaways



Covets have all the sexiness, emotion, and happily ever after that readers have come to expect and love from Entangled. They are firmly grounded in the contemporary world, but each novel brings in supernatural twists, breaking the contemporary and paranormal rules, alike. To find out more about their titles, chat with authors, participate in special events, and to find out what books you’ll be coveting next, visit the Entangled website, follow them on Twitter, LIKE their Facebook page, and join the Book Club.





Today I'm happy to be featuring Covet's November releases which is very exciting because in celebration of these three great new books, they are on sale for just $0.99 for the first week of release only. So they are perfect to download and read over the long holiday weekend between all the hussle and bussle for a nice little break.


Also, make sure to hop on twitter tonight, 11/25 at 8PM to join in the #CovetBash. The authors of these fabulous books will be joining in the fun, and there will be lot's of chances to win prizes, including a grand prize giveaway of Covet's entire backlist to one lucky winner! Details here.



Parts & Wreck by Mark Henry
Wade Crowson, a brutish and brooding playboy and veteran vivisectionist for the Parts Department, runs into more than he bargained for in new partner, Lucid Montgomery, a quirky beauty with a bizarre secret and a string of psychiatric diagnoses she tries hard to keep hidden. Loving Luce will stamp a demonic target on her back and thrust Wade into a frenzied whirlwind of hilarious misunderstandings and, quite possibly, a stripping gig for emptynesters. Can they withstand the savagery of an exorcism (with or without the split pea soup) and come out alive and …in love?


Operation Saving Daniel by Nina Croft

At eighteen, Melissa seduced her best friend Julia's brother only to run away shortly after. While Daniel was her fairytale prince, Lissa didn’t believe in happy ever afters.

Ten years and a near death experience later, Lissa is ready for a husband and family. But a cry for help from Julia puts that dream on hold. Daniel is acting weird and he’s about to marry his long term girlfriend—AKA The Evil One. Someone needs to save him.

Daniel has never stopped loving Lissa. Ten years ago when he gave her a little freedom, he always intended that one day they would be together. Right up until the moment he was bitten by a werewolf. Now, Daniel has to hide what he is. He won’t risk anyone else, especially the woman he loves.

But Lissa is back. Their attraction is stronger than ever and Lissa is nothing if not tenacious.




The Awakening: Britton by Abby Niles

The Awakening #3

"I would lick that man up one side and down the other."

Half-shifter and lead SPAC agent, Val Calhoun, has listened to women gush over the Don Juan of the precinct for the last four years. Yeah, Detective Britton Townsend is hot and has stunning blue eyes, but that foul mouth he saves only for her? What a waste of good looks. And no way does Val want that mouth anywhere near hers.

When the shifter community is threatened, Val is assigned to the case…and fails. So the High Council turns to the rogue shifter they'd sentenced to twenty years as a human--that same obnoxiously sexy Detective Townsend. And sends the two arch-enemies deep into the North Carolina Mountains-—together, and alone.

Being stuck in a tiny honeymoon cabin with Miss Castration and only one bed is definitely not Britton's idea of a good time. But the High Council doesn’t take no for an answer. After his shifter abilities are restored, Brit is once again susceptible to the dreaded, irreversible bonding instinct, the Drall. Thankfully, all he’s ever felt for Val is intense loathing, no reason to worry. Right? All he has to do is solve this case pronto, and he can go back to his footloose Casanova ways. That is, if they don’t kill each other first. Or worse...fall in love.



Missed the first book in the Awakening series? While these books stand alone, it can be fun to go back and see how the other couple got together. And in celebration of book #3's release, book one, The Awakening: Aidan is on sale for just $0.99 as well, so grab it while you can!


The Awakening: Aidan by Abby Niles

The Awakening #1

Is the gift of eternal love a blessing or a curse?

After years of counseling grieving shifters, psychiatrist and half-shifter, Dr. Jaylin Avgar has become jaded on shifter mating. She wants to marry a human and forget about the love for eternity crap. Then she meets Aidan O’Connell, an infuriatingly laid back shifter who represents everything she doesn’t want. Yet, the more he pursues her, the more she craves a future with him. Only one thing stands in her way: death. Can she overcome her fear of losing Aidan to the one guarantee in life?

Millionaire consultant, Aidan O’Connell knows he’ll one day meet a woman who’ll awaken an unrelenting mating instinct. Unfortunately, that woman is Jaylin, who has no qualms about telling him that he and his so-called eternity can shove it. When she pushes him away, he takes a drastic step so she can no longer escape. The close proximity throws the instinct into overdrive. Can he control the need engrained in him until he’s certain she will reciprocate the bond, or will a moment of weakness doom him to hell on earth?






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