BOOK TOUR: My Fatal Futility #Cyberpunk #TimeTravel @cloud_neil

Shellshock

My Fatal Futility Book 1

by N J M Hemfrey

Genre: Cyberpunk, Time Travel

In a neo-Japanese inspired future, comes a cyberpunk epic with a razor-sharp time travel edge.

Kage Carnifex never bleeds easily. He’s stronger than the slickest cybernetics. And the chip in his brain whispers the value of violence.

Kage is the last product of a dead corporation. When he is scraped off the streets by another megacorp, Kage plunges headlong into an unforgiving world of unbreakable contracts, absolute loyalty, and soulful devotion beyond what he thought possible.

Yet, the psychotic butchers from his shrouded past cannot be escaped forever, nor their malicious masters denied Kage’s life. Blood is owed and carnage is coming to carve everything Kage loves apart.

And the secret to surviving may lie within a device Kage can’t control; the chrono-disruptor — a time machine — but time is a fatal thing…

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Convulsions

My Fatal Futility Book 2

Return to the high-octane, ultra-violent world of the 25th century: where cybernetics, bionetics, and bionics blur the lines between people, robots, and beasts; where a secret sinister syndicate play the strings of apocalypse; and where the river of time runs with a fatalistic flow.

Honour-bound, tough as titanium, Kage Carnifex follows two paths that twist his head and heart. One turns him towards the past for love and strife in the climate-ravaged steppe of Norvono. The other fires him into the future under a new captain and a new strategy to devastate Psychosisium.

But seeing the truth of his destiny and origin is barbed with manipulation and betrayal. The hologram ghost of an archenemy promises answers to avoid armageddon. While the malfunctioning chip inside Kage’s head seeks greater control of his body.

Facing off against temporal assassins, teleporters, and butcher-bots has never been deadlier. Fortified by samurai-instincts and bulletproof flesh, Kage plunges into the depths of this neon nightmare — where good deeds make devils and the worst make gods.

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myfatalfutility - guest post

A little about myself. I am 29 years old, living in Scotland with my partner. We moved into our house in February, and we had our first child in September, so we’re very happy and tired. I have a degrees in Philosophy and Sociology, as well as Library and Information Studies, so I’ve been always been fascinated by ethics, how society works, and how information is ordered within society. My takes on these ideas obviously feeds into my stories, to good or bad effect, my readers will know better. I became an author because writing is a compulsion within me. I can’t help but see stories in my head, picturing scenes almost like a movie, and the urge to explore them full takes over. I just wish I could write full time as I’ve got countless story outlines stored in folders, all waiting to reach fruition, which they will if it takes me the rest of my life.

As a self-published author, I do love the control I have over choosing who I work with, and I really appreciate how I can work at my own pace. This can be very stressful while I balance my passion with another job and the needs of life. Marketing in particular is very time consuming, as well as creating the materials, but it’s also heavily rewarding to be involved in the act of creation nearly all the time. There is no better, fulfilling, sometimes nightmarish, feeling in the world.

What is something unique/quirky about you?

I’m told that this is a quirk/oddity about me. I only eat or drink for sustenance. You could reply, well duh don’t we all? However, what I mean is I don’t eat or drink for the pleasure of it. Sure, I enjoy food and drink when consuming but only because my hunger and thirst are being satiated. When the primal urge diminishes, I am released from any desires that are food/drink related. If I didn’t have to, I honestly wouldn’t miss eating or drinking. If anything, eating and drinking takes up time I could be using being productive. The same goes for sleep. I really wish my body didn’t force me to and like a robot with some nuclear exotically charged battery, I could just stay awake forever.

What are some of your pet peeves?

Not a lot of things bother me at all to be honest. I’m quite happy to live and let live. However, when people use the term “active listening”, it really grates my sanity. There was no need to invent this term. We already have words to describe this. There is “hearing” and there is “listening”. Hearing is your ears absorbing all the sounds in your environment. Listening is focusing on certain sounds, ergo listening is inherently active. Moreover, nobody makes the distinction between seeing and “actively seeing”. It’s the same logic!

Where were you born/grew up at?

I was born and grew up in Falkirk, Scotland. For those Braveheart fans, Falkirk was the location of the battle that William Wallace lost pretty badly. I always remember that scene because of the mad yet darkly funny thing the King of England says.

King of England: Tell the archers to fire when ready.

Underling: Won’t we hit our own troops sire?

King of England rotates his head like a wide-eyed owl: Yeeessss, but we’ll hit theirs as well.

Anyway, that all had very little to do with Falkirk. We also have the Falkirk Wheel which I’m told is a world-renowned attraction. There is always lots on and it’s only giant wheel in the world to connect two different canals at stunningly different heights. Other claims to fame, include the drink Irn Bru which was originally made in Falkirk in 1899, the Carron Iron Works smithed all sorts of weapons and implements for the British Empire (so if you’re ever close to a cannon or old sword, you should check to see if it has the Carron Iron Works Brand), and Rosebank whisky which could be back in production when the new distillery is finished.

What kind of world ruler would you be?

I would never choose to be a ruler as it’s an inherently flawed and soul-crushing role. I can’t help but consider the paradox of power, where the more power you have, the less you should actually do as it will interfere with people’s free will. So, as a ruler, you do have to be a guardian of free will, no matter the pressure and animosity you may receive for rigidly sticking to this position. Free will is a core element of liberality and a liberal society is, I think, always the most emotionally, physically, and spiritually healthy of all sorts of societies. Ironically, the ancient Greeks held democracy just above tyranny which I think makes sense as the former can easily create the conditions for the latter. The more you give people the support and resources to think for themselves and rule their own lives, the more some people think the ways that others rule their lives interferes with what make the “best and most moral” life. Essentially, people think the world would be better if only things were done “their” way. However, morality is inherently subjective – there is no objective morality we can prove, or philosophers would have done it already. Morality is basically patting yourself on the back for following your own code which is pretty insane but so is the human brain. Therefore, as a ruler I would stick to being a guarding of free will and liberality no matter what. The world is better full of diversity, conflicting opinions, and even being offended without hacking each other’s heads off. Society stagnates when we don’t strive to have different points of view or learn to respect the lives others lead.

How to find time to write as a parent?

I recently became a dad and it’s an equal mixture of incomparable love, mind-stretching stress, and contentedness that you are exactly where you should be. Writing around a child, and chores too, needs to be done in bits by necessity. I do most of my writing on my phone as it’s very easy to add a thought, a sentence, a paragraph while on the go. Plus, it gets around the problem of writer’s block as you’re not staring at screen, trying to force the words to come. The words just come, usually at a very inconvenient moment, but I repeat them in my head until I can jot them down. When it comes to editing what I’ve written on my laptop, I capitalize upon those moments my little lovely terror baby is snoozing, at the expense of my own sleep.

Do you have a favorite movie?

My favourite movie is Collateral. It is the first film that really provoked me to consider and approach society, morality, and all the nuances in between differently, It’s a story about a hitman who gets into a cab in LA and forces the driver to take him to 5 hits. I found the conversations they have about life, death, and the universe to be profoundly powerful. It was also my first exposure to nihilistic thinking which encouraged my study of philosophy and sociology later at the University of Aberdeen. The film also has very cool and heart-punching action scenes – I’m always craving some high-octane action spectacles. For those interested, the film has Tom Cruise starring in the only villain role he’s ever played. It’s by far his best performance.

My second favourite move, if I may, is The Last Samurai. Between the beautiful cinematography, heart-stirring soundtrack, and narrative about tradition versus modernity, couple with redemption, I find this film to be incredibly moving and captivating. I often listen to the soundtrack to calm my mind when feeling anxious, sad, or stressed. There is a lot of wisdom to be gained from the best of Samurai culture and this definitely impacted my research when writing the My Fatal Futility series.

Which of your novels can you imagine made into a movie?

To be honest all of them. Whenever I write a book, I see the scenes in my head as a movie – in fact that’s typically how I first chew into the idea of a story. I get flash scenes in my head, almost like a trailer. This probably explains the way I do my descriptions – I imagine what the camera would focus on. My current books are pretty long and it would be difficult to do a movie that wasn’t split into parts (a classic author’s problem), but I believe they’re all ready to be converted to movie format when/if the time comes.

As a writer, what would you choose as your mascot/avatar/spirit animal?

I think capybaras are hilarious, cute, yet very durable and clever (I’m not sure if that’s an accurate picture of myself at all). These animals can evade ravenous murder by large predators, take the time to care for stray animals of any species, and be just genuinely friendly and personable in their own way. These are things to aspire to as an author or not. I especially like the idea of my mascot capybara chewing on a pipe, wearing round spectacles, and having a crazy coloured mohawk while sitting on the writer’s hammock.

N J M Hemfrey has degrees in Philosophy and Sociology, and Information and Library Studies, and is an administrator for a charity. He lives with his fiancé Kasha, who is the best individual to spend existence with, whether in lockdown, the apocalypse, or more normal things like the cinema, or wandering around old castles. He is an utter movie, book, video game and comic enthusiast, especially for the science fiction, fantasy, and horror genres. One of his greatest frustrations is that there is not enough time in the universe to ever finish the lists of things he wants to do.

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COVER REVEAL: Book of the Seven Spells by Charlie Lovett #UrbanFantasy #YoungAdult #EpicFantasy @CharlieLovett42

The Book of the Seven Spells

Guardians Book 1

by Charlie Lovett

Genre: YA Epic Urban Fantasy

Sebastian Garcia, Juliet Okofor, and twins Angus and Celia McNeil could not be more different from one another. But when they accidently discover an enchanted house that once belonged to the great magician, Moriarty Mortimer, everything changes.

Legend has it that somewhere inside the mysterious mansion is the most powerful book of magic ever known, and the kids aren’t the only ones hoping to find it. Someone unexpected wants to use it for their evil plan.

Now, they must find the book and use a spell to travel back in time to convince Moriarty Mortimer to teach them magic well enough to defeat a maniacal mad man.

But magic is tricky, so they must work as a team. If they fail, unimaginable power will fall into exactly the wrong hands. If they succeed, they’ll go from magicless misfits to guardians of The Book of the Seven Spells.

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Charlie Lovett lives in a house full of old books and can often be found reading on his back porch with his dog Rosie curled up next to him. He loves to run, watch movies, and travel, but most of all he loves to tell stories. He wrote The Book of the Seven Spells for a group of young friends and he hopes you like it as much as they do. Visit www.charlielovett.com

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BOOK TOUR: The Ghost’s Daughter by Cary Herwig #YoungAdult #Paranormal @HerwigCary

The Ghost’s Daughter

The Army Brat Hauntings Book 1

by Cary Herwig

Genre: YA Paranormal

New schools.
New friends.
No money.

Life as an Army Brat is always challenging. Especially when you’re being haunted.

In the summer of 1956, in the midst of the Cold War, Vivien Brewer, army brat, moves with her family to Camp Breckinridge. She and her sister join friends exploring a nearby abandoned hospital. She’s been told not to go there, but the rumors of treasure prove too great a temptation. What she finds is the spectral revenant of a World War II nurse who wants something and expects Vivien to deliver. Soon she’s in mortal danger, and so are her family and friends. If she can’t deliver what the ghost demands, no one is safe.

Vivien tries to get help, but her father and doctor think her hallucinations must be hormonal. Only her mother knows better—because Vivien inherited a gift from her. Refusing to run or hide, Vivien embarks on the greatest adventure of her young life—and quite possibly, the last one.

Close the doors. Shut the blinds. Turn out the lights. This is a book best read after dark. Just make sure no one is peering over your shoulder…

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CARY HERWIG is a retired archivist living in Oklahoma. She grew up as an army brat moving every year or two. She writes science fiction, fantasy, horror, and mystery under different names and has published both novels and short fiction for several decades. She lives in Oklahoma with her husband, but gets restless every few years, wondering if it’s time to move again.

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BOOK TOUR: The Wounded Hearts Duology by Debbie Cromack #contemporaryromance @Debbie_Cromack

Someone Exactly Like Me

The Wounded Hearts Duology Book 1

by Debbie Cromack

Genre: Contemporary Romance, Drama

#1 Best Seller in AU and CA in European Drama

Wow! That was the most intense slow burn that I have ever read.” ~ Sharon, Amazon Reviewer

He offered me a deal…

A deal I shouldn’t have taken.

Now that I’m in, how do I get out?

Niccolo Mancini is the last person I expected to steam into my life. Me, a struggling romance author. Him, a scorching-hot, Italian, film star who’s just skyrocketed to fame.

Our business agreement has us spending a lot of time together, much of it under the same roof.

As the terms of the deal play out, undeniable attraction ignites.

Secrets are exposed. Hearts entangle.

What’s a girl to do?

You’ll love this tantalizing, push-and-pull relationship because everyone yearns to experience the tumultuous journey that leads to a happily ever after. Get ready for a raw, real, emotional love story that will suck you in, hit all your feels, and leave your heart smiling.

Get it now!

Someone Exactly Like Me is a slow burn, friends to lovers, forced proximity romance about an off-limits celebrity and the romance author who unexpectedly steals his heart.

This is Book 1 in the Wounded Hearts Series. While it can be read as a standalone, your experience will be better if you read this book first. I hope you enjoy this soul mates, strong female friendship, broken hero, contemporary romance story. Great summer beach read!

**On Sale for Only .99cents July 11th-12th!!**

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Kiss Away Your Pain

The Wounded Hearts Duology Book 2

When it comes to captivating slow burn romance, Ms. Cromack is a master at it. In this emotionally charged contemporary romance, she weaves a complex story of grief, heartbreak, family, friends, love, and happiness that is bound to etch a lasting impression on your soul.” ~Angela Ford, Romance Author

I’d had it all…

Career of my dreams. The best friend a girl could ask for.

And the love of my life. How could I have known he’d be gone too soon?

That kind of love doesn’t happen twice.

Until…

One. Single. Touch.

A passion ignites between us that neither of us have ever felt.

When the reality behind our intense connection comes to light, that passion explodes in our faces.

Once it’s revealed, there’s no undoing it, no changing it.

And I don’t know if I’ll ever get him back…

You’ll love this emotional love story filled with passion, grief, and learning to love again because everyone roots for a second chance at finding love. Grab your tissues and get ready for a raw, real, emotional love story that will suck you in, hit all your feels, and leave your heart smiling.

Get it now!

This is Book 2 in the Wounded Hearts Series. While it can be read as a standalone, your experience will be better if you read Someone Exactly Like Me first. I hope you enjoy this SLOW BURN, soul mates, broken / Mediterranean hero, contemporary romance story. Great summer beach read!

**PreOrder now for Only $1.99!**

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Debbie Cromack is a contemporary romance author who writes realistic, romantic love stories with a lot of heart and a hint of steam. She’s been called the master of the slow burn.

After spending 25+ years in corporate America, being the CEO of an event decorating company, and then an online business coach, she tried her hand at writing romance novels late in life and has been writing ever since.

She’s an Amazon international bestselling author and has been featured in Forbes.

The Personal Side of Her:

She has a bunny named Nutmeg, who’s quite the little snuggler. She also has two Nigerian dwarf goats, Patches and Tiny Tim, and many chickens.

She does her best to eat healthy and organic however, she does have a wicked sweet-tooth for chocolate and tries to only indulge on special occasions. Her biggest indulgence…hot cocoa!!

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BOOK TOUR: Ghost Light by Jane Tesh #Paranormal #Mystery @janetesh

Ghost Light

by Jane Tesh

Genre: Paranormal Mystery

Theodosia “Teddy” Ballard knows nothing about community theater, but when the stage manager for “Little Shop of Horrors” takes a tragic header down the costume-loft stairs, she agrees to fill in for the sake of her actor friend, Will. Teddy takes the superstitions and swelled heads of The Stage in stride—till she meets George Clancy Everhart, the theater ghost, who informs her that the previous stage manager was murdered and demands that she find the killer. Both investigation and rehearsals are complicated when she makes a surprising discovery about her relationship with Will—and learns that George has his own dramatic agenda.

There was no way I had left a door open, but I got up and checked again. Must be a draft from somewhere in this old building. I retrieved the scattered pages and made sure they were in the right order.

I heard a thud as if something had fallen over backstage. Looking in the wings, I found a hammer on the floor. I put it back where it belonged and returned to my papers.

An overhead light flickered, red, then green, then white.

“All right, that’s enough.” I got to my feet for the third time. “Good joke, Will. Ha, ha. Now show yourself.”

“I beg your pardon, dear lady,” said a deep voice.

I stared in disbelief as a man appeared before me. He was tall and elegantly dressed in a three piece suit and cravat. His features were blurry, but he had an aristocratic air, a distinctive nose, and a satisfied smile.

He removed his bowler hat and bowed. “George Clancy Everhart, at your service.”

I didn’t know how Will had managed to create this image. This must have been some bizarre rite of passage for people new to the theater. Well, it wasn’t going to rattle me.

“Theodosia Ballard,” I said. “It’s a pleasure to meet you.”

“Theodosia! What a splendid name!”

“I prefer Teddy.”

“Teddy? That’s a boy’s name! You are a woman, and a very fine woman, at that. Such a magnificent presence! You should be on stage.”

“I am on stage right now, and I have a lot of work to do, so you can turn yourself off, disappear, whatever, just go away.”

He looked startled. “You don’t believe in me.”

“I believe you’re a really good special effect. Go on now, get lost.”

The image drew himself up. “My good woman, you are speaking to one of the premiere actors of the Twentieth Century. Why, I appeared in hundreds of plays during my lifetime. Thousands of performances! All to great acclaim!”

“I’m sure you did.”

“Excellent reviews! Encores by the score!”

“Then why are you haunting a little theater in Rossboro, North Carolina? Shouldn’t you be in New York? London?”

He paused and put a hand to his heart. “You wound me to the core, Theodosia. In my later years, my career took a sad tumble. Like your lover William, I was unable to continue my passion for Broadway. I ended up here, disillusioned but undefeated.”

“Whoa, hold on, buster. Will is not my lover. And how do you know about his New York experience?” I’d had enough. “Will, stop this right now. It isn’t funny.”

“I agree, Theodosia. It is tragic. The boy has such talent, such a love for theater.”

“Stop it.” I moved to push the man away, but my hands went right through him, and I almost fell into the orchestra pit. A strong force shoved me away from the edge.

“Dear me,” he said. “You must be more careful.”

I caught my breath. “I don’t believe in ghosts. Why are you here?”

“Because you need my help,” he said.

“What do I need your help for?”

“Why, to solve the murder, of course! I liked Paula. She was efficient. I admired her work ethic. I do hope you have a strong work ethic, Theodosia.”

“Wait, wait. Go back to the first thing. Solve the murder? No one’s calling Paula’s death a murder!”

“But it was,” George Clancy Everhart said. “I saw it.”

Jane Tesh, a retired media specialist, lives in Mt. Airy, North Carolina, Andy Griffith’s home town, the real Mayberry. She is the author of the Madeline Maclin Mysteries, featuring former beauty queen, Madeline “Mac” Maclin and her reformed con man husband, Jerry Fairweather, and the Grace Street Mystery Series, featuring struggling PI David Randall, his psychic friend, Camden, and an array of tenants who move in and out of Cam’s boarding house at 302 Grace Street. Ghost Light is her first standalone mystery and the first to feature an asexual heroine.

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BOOK TOUR: The Infidelity Curse by Barbara Monajem #historicalromance @BarbaraMonajem

The Infidelity Curse

Perilous Secrets Book 3

by Barbara Monajem

Genre: Historical Romance

The death of her cruel husband means freedom at last for Lucretia Tifton—until she learns that the guardian he chose for her longed-for baby is the latest in a line of earls known for separating their children from unfaithful wives. The elusive new earl is certain to hear the gossip about Lucretia. Will he believe it and prove to be as heartless as his ancestors?

Giles, the Earl of Netherbroke, wants nothing more than to work in his London shop, building furniture with beautiful marquetry finishes. If unexpectedly inheriting the earldom isn’t bad enough, now he’s saddled with an unwanted guardianship. What’s worse, the baby’s mother is the loveliest woman he’s ever seen.

Giles is almost certain Lucretia is an adulteress—and the more he learns about her, the more he understands why she might have betrayed her husband. Nevertheless, he is determined not to succumb, like his ancestors, to the Infidelity Curse.

But then Lucretia is suddenly in danger, and the only way to protect her is to make her his.

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theinfidelitycurse - excerpt

Setup: At the reading of Sir Matthew Tifton’s will, all is going well, except for the unpleasant presence of Sir Matthew’s nephew, Mr. Welton, who has already disrupted the proceedings twice. And then…

“There remains the question of guardianship, which is somewhat unusual,” Mr. Briggs, the solicitor, said.

Oh, God. Lucretia hadn’t thought of that.

“Sir Matthew appointed the Earl of Netherbroke as guardian of his child.” He paused. “Also as trustee, jointly with myself.”

“What the devil? I am meant to be the guardian!” Mr. Welton sprang up. “And the sole trustee, damn you!”

“Mr. Welton, if you cannot restrain yourself,” Mr. Briggs said, “Lady Tifton will be obliged to ask her footman to remove you.”

“Pah! She wouldn’t dare,” Welton said, “not with what I know about her.” He jabbed an accusing finger at Lucretia.

She shrank away. What could he possibly know? She’d never done anything wrong, except . . .

Welton couldn’t know about Johnny Magee. He lived in London and was nowhere near Sussex when the baby was conceived.

“Who,” Noelle demanded, “is the Earl of Netherbroke?”

“He is an elderly peer who lives in Gloucestershire,” Lucretia said. “Sir Matthew and the Earl of Netherbroke were enthusiastic medal collectors. They met once at an auction and corresponded for a short while well over a year ago. Sir Matthew’s passion for marquetry was due to the Earl’s influence. I suppose my husband decided, judging by a brief acquaintance and some expensive furniture from the shop the Earl recommended, that the Earl would make a suitable guardian.” Fury swelled within her, but she strove to keep it from her voice. Surely a doddering earl was better than horrid Mr. Welton.

Mr. Briggs nodded. “Most likely due to his position in society.”

“Society be damned. My uncle feared for his life and the safety of his child.” Welton’s spittle flew. “He knew his precious wife had cuckolded him over and over, and then she tried to poison him with her noxious brews. What sort of mother would she be?”

Aghast, Lucretia clapped a hand to her breast. “No, no! I made him tisanes of healing herbs.” Her voice trembled. “He was ill. I tried to cure him!”

“Hah! You would claim that, wouldn’t you—but you don’t deny that you cuckolded him.”

Before Lucretia could gain control of her voice, he turned to Jellicoe, the valet. “You know all about this, don’t you? Sir Matthew valued you. He confided in you, didn’t he?”

“Yes, sir, he did,” Jellicoe said. “He believed Lady Tifton was trying to kill him. He feared the consequences to the child’s immortal soul if it was left to its mother’s care.”

Welton shook his fist at Lucretia. “You killed him because he was going to change his will. No. More likely he had already changed it, using the services of a more competent solicitor than this fellow. And then you burned it so no one would ever know.”

Lucretia quailed, shaking her head. “No, that’s not true.”

“You’re a whore and a murderess,” he shouted. “You may try to cozen the Earl of Whatshisname, but you won’t succeed. I’ll do whatever it takes to see that he takes the child away from you. You’ll be lucky if you don’t hang!”

A dark cloud swept over Lucretia. She opened her mouth to protest, but no words came, and she fainted dead away.

**Get the first book, The Smuggler’s Escape, FREE June 3rd-5th!!**

Barbara Monajem grew up in western Canada. She wrote her first story in third grade about apple tree gnomes. After dabbling in neighborhood musicals and teen melodrama, she published a middle-grade fantasy when her children were young. Now her kids are adults, and she writes historical and paranormal romance and mystery for grownups. She lives in Georgia, USA , with an ever-shifting population of relatives, friends, and mostly feline strays.

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BOOK TOUR: Dead Drift by Kelly Romo #thriller @KellyAnneRomo

Dead Drift

A Whitewater Thriller Book 1

by Kelly Romo

Genre: Thriller

Two teenage girls on the run with fake IDs and a beater car…what could go wrong?

Emmy has always been impulsive. She is no longer a minor and has aged out of foster care. When her best friend, Amber, is the target of a perverted uncle who lives in the basement of her group home, they plan her escape.

They head for Canada, where Amber will be safe, and the foster care system can no longer control their lives. When they come across a whitewater rafting brochure, they decide to take a detour for one last adventure before leaving the country. Emmy and Amber have no idea it will be a decision that will forever change their fates.

The rafting town is so far in the middle of nowhere that Emmy’s car radio catches nothing but static. They consider turning around until a truck pulls up, loaded with hot whitewater rafting guides and rubber rafts–just the fun they were looking for. Ignoring every instinct, they turn off the pavement and follow the truck down an isolated dirt road. They end up in Lodell, the town where a girl went missing the previous summer…and she will not be the last.

deaddrift - guest post

How long have you been writing?

I decided I wanted to be a writer when I was pregnant with my youngest child. Between raising three kids and teaching myself how to write, it took me forever–but I never gave up. I got my first book published when he was twenty-two years old.

Do the characters all come to you at the same time or do some of them come to you as you write?

I usually know the main characters, but others come to me as I write.

What kind of research do you do before you begin writing a book?

At the beginning, I do a lot of preliminary research. As I add new things, I research more. I am a stickler for accuracy. If someone is familiar with guiding, and I represent something wrong, it will pull them from the book. One time, I had a character look up at the night sky in August in San Diego, 1935. I got star charts and made sure the constellation she saw was visible at that location on that date and time of night. I know that is a bit obsessive, but what can I say? I also have content editors review my novel before I publish it. For DEAD DRIFT, I had it edited by a young woman who grew up in foster care, a sergeant from the sheriff’s department, two river guides (one male and one female), and another author who grew up fly fishing in the area I wrote about.

Do you see writing as a career?

It is a dream career for me. I hope I can earn enough to write full-time. I have so many ideas, just not enough writing time.

What do you think about the current publishing market?

I think the market is shifting, and there are so many unknowns. I think the indie market is taking off, and writers do not have to rely on traditional publishing anymore. Indie publishing is a lot of work, but it also allows people without connections in the publishing industry to get their awesome books out there.

Do you read yourself and if so what is your favorite genre?

I love historical fiction and thrillers, both of which I write.

Do you prefer to write in silence or with noise? Why?

I prefer to write in silence. The voices in my head are enough for me.

Do you write one book at a time or do you have several going at a time?

I have several “in process,” but I usually focus on one at a time.

Pen or type writer or computer?

I write on the computer. I used to write in the computer and print it out to edit. I now edit directly on the computer. I use Scrivener software, and that makes it easy.

A day in the life of the author?

I get up at 4:00 and write for about three hours before work. After work, I may do some research, walk my dog, do something with friends or family, or work on my marketing. Since I am a teacher, I have summers to camp, hike, and fish. The funny thing is that I get much more writing done during the school year than I do over the summer. Maybe because the weather in Oregon is rainy in the winter, or maybe because of the strict schedule.

Do you have any advice to offer for new authors?

Butt in the seat. Whether you feel like writing or not, put your butt in the seat every day. You may only get a few paragraphs written, but they add up.

Describe your writing style.

I’ve heard writers described as plotters or pantsers. Plotters make outlines, and pantsers write by the seat of their pants. I am a plotter. I’ve done extensive plotting, and I’ve created basic outlines. I’m someone who needs a direction to go. I find freedom in at least having an outline. I know what needs to happen, and I can focus on that one plot point. Once, I tried being a pantser…after staring at a blank screen for fifteen minutes without a single idea of what to write, I made an outline.

What makes a good story?

Dynamic characters, a setting that is almost like another character, and a plot that forces the characters to grow.

What are you currently reading?

I’ve been reading Lucy Foley and Catherine Ryan Howard.

What is your writing Kryptonite?

My family. They are a loved Kryptonite, but I cannot write when they are awake. I don’t want to miss my time with them. I was able to write with my daughter when she was little because she would sit with me doing her art, and I did not feel like I was neglecting her. Plus, we would take a break for a nice lunch together.

Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?

I try to be true to the story with the reader in mind.

Do you believe in writer’s block?

I believe in things getting in the way of my writing and losing focus. When I have what could be considered writer’s block, I sit down to write anyway. I open a new document and a published novel. I type word-for-word what is in the novel. I usually choose one written from the same point of view of my work in progress. By doing this, I get in the flow of writing. After a page or two, I close the document and open my own manuscript.

Kelly Romo grew up in California but has lived in Oregon for over twenty-five years. She teaches writing, literature, and social studies. She is the mother of three grown children: Brittany, Brennan, and Ryan. She is an avid outdoorswoman who loves to kayak, hike, and fish.

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BOOK TOUR: Old Bones and Ice Cream Cones by Elizabeth Pantley #cozymystery @nocrysolution

Old Bones and Ice Cream Cones
Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic Series Book 6
by Elizabeth Pantley
Genre: Magical Cozy Mystery

A boyfriend who’s missing. Or was. . . Or is. . . A boat full of old bones. A community ice cream social. A friend in trouble. A spiteful witch, and an angry villain. The mysteries abound in Destiny Falls, but Hayden, Latifa and their family and friends are up for the excitement and adventure.

Old Bones and Ice Cream Cones follows the series format of combining two stories that blend into one. A murder mystery and the island mystery.

The Island Mystery: Hayden’s boyfriend Han is missing. But she swears she saw him zoom by in his car. She’d thought it was a surprise, and that he was home early from his secret service case. She was wrong. The surprise is that his signal isn’t pinging, and no one knows where he is. There appears to be black magic behind his disappearance. Can they learn who’s responsible and bring Han safely home?

The Murder Mystery: A pile of old bones is found in an ancient fishing boat. They could be tied to the disappearance of two young women years ago, back when many of the Destiny Falls people where in high school. Many of the citizens had bad history with the girls. Do the bones belong to those girls, and what happened? Were the girls murdered? And could the murderer be living among them?

Hayden’s many adventures in Destiny Falls will keep you guessing with each book in this intriguing series.

Reviews for the Destiny Falls Series:

Will blow you away!” ~ Cozy Mystery Book Reviews

“My favorite series in the whole wide world.” ~ Elza Reads
“Intriguing and totally unput-downable.” ~ Goodreads

“Generously seasoned with sass, class, and a dose of spunk. Delish!” ~ Pages & Paws

“The mystery, magic, and delicately woven story held me captive!” ~ Goodreads

“One of the most creative series I’ve ever read.” ~ Goodreads

So. Darn. Clever. ~ Pages & Paws

“Solidly at the top of my list for paranormal mysteries!” ~ Goodreads

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Jousting and Justice

Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic Series Book 5

An invitation to a medieval festival. A ferry ride to a mysterious island. A scheming, inept witch. An office break-in, an unidentified body, and a string of suspects. Can Hayden, her brave, sassy cat, Latifa, and the people of Destiny Falls solve the mystery and enjoy the festival?

Jousting and Justice follows the series format of combining two stories that blend into one. A murder mystery and the island mystery.

The Island Mystery: Hayden and all her friends get an invitation to a medieval festival – but it’s on “the forbidden island.” It’s too enticing to pass up. Of course, strange things will happen once they get there! . . . You’ll also learn the truth about the witch’s sister!

The Murder Mystery: A dead body shows up in the most shocking place. First, they need to figure out who this dead guy is. Then, who killed him and why. There are so many twists and turns on the way to the answers! But we know that Hayden, Latifa, and their family and friends will figure it out and justice will be served.

Hayden’s many adventures in Destiny Falls will keep you guessing with each book in this intriguing series.

Reviews for Jousting and Justice:

Absolutely magical! I could not put this book down!” ~ Goodreads

“If there were more than five stars I would definitely give at least 10 stars worth double the wonderful!” ~ Goodreads

“Full of wonderful characters, mystery, humor, and a mischievous cat. An adventurous mystery series written with cleaver imagination.” ~ Goodreads

“Solidly at the top of my list for paranormal mysteries! Just when I think the series cannot get any better, it does. ~ Goodreads

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Witches, Spiders, and Schemes

Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic Series Book 4

A magic mirror to an enchanted world. A mysterious ghost. A hilarious, perpetually annoyed witch. A brave, sassy cat. Two unexplained deaths and a mysterious community filled with secrets. Can Hayden and the people of Destiny Falls solve the mystery and return the community to its peaceful, enchanted existence?

Hayden’s adventures in Destiny Falls continue in book four of the Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic series. Starting with a strange old woman at a cave and her father’s mysterious ferry journey, there are secrets to be unwound.

The enchantments in Destiny Falls are showing cracks, and Hayden suspects that it’s tied directly to her family, which has a history that’s more complex than she realized. When two bodies are found floating in the bay it’s clear that the mysteries surrounding Gladstone and the ferry are more dangerous than people realize.
Luckily, Hayden and her sassy sidekick, Latifa have developed a group of family and friends in this enchanted place who are all ready and willing to help solve the mystery, and release Destiny Falls to resume its normal, amazing, enchanted existence.
Hayden’s many adventures in Destiny Falls will keep you guessing with each book in this intriguing series.
Reviews for Witches, Spiders, and Schemes:
“Oh my goodness, this was SO GOOD!” ~ Prockish
“A captivating read full of interesting people and places, with surprises around every corner.” ~ Linda C. Goodreads
“This is no run-of-the-mill paranormal book! Unique ideas.” ~ Susan G. Amazon
“The mystery, magic, and delicately woven story held me captive! I couldn’t ever imagine such a delicious story!” ~ Goodreads

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The Ghost Camper’s Tall Tales

Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic Series Book 3

A magic mirror. An enchanted world. A mysterious ghost. A hilarious witch. An unexplained death. A sassy cat. Visit Destiny Falls and escape to a great time.

A mysterious old man keeps popping up to tell Hayden a series of tall tales. Who is he? And is he actually glowing? Are his stories fiction, or is he telling her the history of her family, the enchanted islands, and the witch? And why did a dead body show up . . . of someone who is already dead?

Can Hayden and her quirky sidekick, Latifa unscramble this mystery?

Hayden’s adventures in the magical world of Destiny Falls continue in this gripping story that answers your questions about the mysterious world she entered through a mirror in book one, Falling into Magic. We learn more about her missing mother, whose story begins in book two, The Disappearance of Emily.

Reviews for The Ghost Camper’s Tall Tales:

I. Can’t. Even! Pantley amazingly, magically, has outdone herself once again! The mystery, magic, and carefully woven story and history held me captive!”-Georgeanne, Goodreads

“I absolutely LOVE this series! An intriguing story… So many twists and turns!” – Linda, Goodreads

Intriguing and totally unput-downable!” -Goodreads

“Held me captive!”- Goodreads

“My favorite series in the whole wide world.” – Elza Reads

**On sale for Only .99cents May 20th & 21st!!**

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The Disappearance of Emily

Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic Series Book 2

A magic mirror. An enchanted world. A mysterious missing mother. A suspicious package. An unexplained death. A community of strange, quirky people. A sassy cat and a hilarious, bumbling, and perpetually annoyed witch. Hayden finds herself surrounded with support as she solves the mystery of the death and learns shocking secrets about herself.

Hayden’s life was normal until she fell through a mirror and was thrust into an alternate, magical place. The town is enchanted and charming, and the amazing mansion she lives in changes to meet the needs of the people who live there, including her! Every day she discovers a new enchantment.

But something is amiss. Hayden gets an ominous warning from a strange woman, who promises to tell her the town secrets and give her a package – if she’ll meet her at the mysterious ferry that lacks a published destination. The ferry visit is cancelled, but the package is delivered. Once it arrives, someone turns up dead. Then the suspicious episodes start, too many to call them coincidences. She and her family are targeted and in danger.

Who or what is causing the chaos? All signs point to the mysterious disappearance of her mother – way back when Hayden was just two days old. Can she identify and eliminate the threat before another person in her life is stolen away?

Reviews for The Disappearance of Emily:

“Just when I thought I knew who the killer was, BAM, a twist.” ~ Leslie, Storeybook Reviews

“Intriguing and totally unput-downable, it draws you in from the word go, and you will not want to leave until it chucks you at The End.” ~ Carol, Goodreads

“A mix of unique characters, romance, mystery, and magic.” ~ Goodreads

**Will be On Sale in June!!**

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Falling Into Magic

Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic Series Book 1

An accidental journey through a magic mirror. A portal to an enchanted land. A mysterious family she never knew she had. Hayden’s life is upended with the wonder of Destiny Falls. But it is tainted by the danger that brought her here and that threatens her newfound family. Can Hayden and her sassy sidekick remove the threat, so that she can begin her magical new life in this captivating world?

When Hayden was a child, she lost her cat. Adults told her the cat ran away, but she knew the truth. The mirror had taken her. She knew because the mirror gave her a glimpse of an alternate world and had nearly pulled her in, so she was certain the cat had suffered that fate.

Twenty years later Hayden discovers the secret of the mirror when she is thrust into it. She learns of an enchanted world she never knew existed, and a family she never knew she had.

But danger brought her here, and it followed her. Now, Hayden is on a mission to remove the threat, so that she can begin her magical, meaningful new life in this enchanted world filled with quirky characters, a talking cat, and wonderful new friends and family that welcomed her with open arms.

Reviews for Falling into Magic:

“Will blow you away!” ~ Cozy Mystery Book Reviews

“Absolutely brilliant, delightful and magical. This is a book that you cannot stop reading. More please, much, much more!” ~ Carol, Goodreads


“Oh my goodness this was SO GOOD! Do yourself a favor and read this book.” ~ Prockish

“This is no run-of-the-mill paranormal book! You will be glad this is a series!” ~ Susan G. Amazon

“A magical, delightful tale with a quirky cast of characters, engaging dialogue, an appealing universe, and an intriguing plotline that I could not put down.” ~ Dru Ann, drusbookmusing.com

**Get it FREE June 20th-24th!!**

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Elizabeth Pantley is the international bestselling author of The No-Cry Sleep Solution and thirteen other books for parents. She is also the author of The Destiny Falls Mystery and Magic book series. Her books have been published in over twenty languages. She lives in the Pacific Northwest and is the mother of four and Nana to one.

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BOOK TOUR: A Scot is Not Enough by Gina Conkle #HistoricalRomance #ScottishRomance

A Scot Is Not Enough

Scottish Treasures Book 2

by Gina Conkle

Genre: Historical Scottish Romance

Gina Conkle’s newest stunning romance in her Scottish Treasures series features a fierce Scotswoman eager to break the rules and the man who vows to stop her.

A Gentleman of Virtue

Decent and ambitious, Alexander Sloane is finally a finger’s breadth from achieving the government post he’s worked towards for years. A minor task monitoring Bow Street funds for the Crown is his final hurdle. But he discovers more than he bargains for when his assignment leads him to the most captivating woman in London.

A Woman of Questionable Repute

Cecelia MacDonald has one mission: find and steal the sgian duhb, the ceremonial dagger taken from her clan by British soldiers during the Uprising of 1745. The coy and clever Scotswoman has never had any trouble using men to do her bidding and she’s enjoying the cat and mouse game she’s playing with the delectable Alexander. But when a mutual enemy proves deadly, she must rely on him for more than flirtation to gain the dagger.

An Explosive Partnership

As Alexander and Cecilia become unlikely allies, their desire for each other overwhelms them. When shocking secrets come to light, will Alexander realize loving the wrong woman is the right thing to do?

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Gina’s fate was sealed when her mom read aloud the poem, The Highwayman—the perfect historical romance hook. But, Gina grew up in California where no dukes or Vikings live. She always did prefer stone castles over sand castles and books over beaches.

Years ago, she fell in love with her favorite hero, Brian, and they eloped to Vegas at midnight. Together, they raised two sons who like history almost as much as their mom.

Nowadays, Gina pens sparkling Georgian romance with a dash of Scots or Viking romance with heat and adventure. When she’s not writing, you can find her wandering a museum or with her nose in a book.

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BOOK TOUR: We All Fall Before the Harvest by C.M. Forest #horror @c_laforet

We All Fall Before the Harvest

by C.M. Forest

Genre: Horror

In the guts of a nameless city, career criminal Owen fights for his sanity and his life. After stealing a morbid piece of artwork at the behest of his boss, Owen discovers the original owners of the grotesque painting are part of a twisted cult known as The Family—and they’ll stop at nothing to get it back.

The longer Owen possesses the painting, the more it warps his mind and alters the very world around him. Between those that want him dead, his own dark past, and his crumbling grip on reality, the walls are closing in. Unstable but determined, Owen is the only thing standing between our world and the coming Harvest.

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weallfallbeforetheharvest - guest post

What are your top 10 favorite books/authors?

Why would you ask the impossible? If you wanted a top 100, I would still have to narrow it down. Sigh. Okay. I’ll just name authors because, in most cases, they would have multiple books in my favourites list anyway.

Nick Cutter

Adam Nevill

Andrew Pyper

Laird Barron

Stephen King

Junji Ito

Dan Simmons

Caitlin Starling

Michael Slade

T. Kingfisher

 

What book do you think everyone should read?

If we’re talking the spooky stuff, then it has to be Stephen King’s It. I know it’s thick enough to choke a donkey, but it’s worth it. Truly an epic horror novel.

 

How long have you been writing?

I’ve been writing for about ten years. Although, to be fair, only about five of those were with any sort of serious intentions. It felt more like a glorified hobby at first.

 

Do the characters all come to you at the same time or do some of them come to you as you write?

I usually have a handle on all the major characters in a story before I start writing, but a bunch of secondary characters will inevitably pop up along the way. I will say, it is rare for these surprise additions to ascend higher than secondary character status though.

 

What kind of research do you do before you begin writing a book?

Confession time. I do almost no research. This is completely because I’m lazy. My process is to write the book with little to no regard to research, then, afterward, when cleaning it up, I’ll fact check the stuff I wrote. Even then, I try to dance around as much research as possible. Again, I’m lazy.

 

Do you see writing as a career?

Not to sound naïve, but yeah, I do. As much as I would love to be raking in Stephen King money, that’s not the only path to success as a writer. Hopefully, in a couple years, with a few more books under my belt, I’ll be making enough to transition into writing as my full-time gig.

 

Do you read yourself and if so, what is your favorite genre?

I read about 50 books a year. I thought this was impressive until I started making friends in the industry and found others read hundreds! Like, how is that even possible?! Anyway, I read across multiple genres but my fav, obviously, is horror. I would say I read three horror books for every one of a different genre.

 

Do you prefer to write in silence or with noise? Why?

I always write with my headphones on. I find silence off-putting. I can hear my own heavy breathing and it reminds me of how unhealthy I am. At least with music in my ears, only those around me have to hear me gasping for air.

 

Do you write one book at a time or do you have several going at a time?

Traditionally, I would write one at a time, but there have been occasions when I’m editing one project while writing another. I try to avoid this, as my mind works better when I can keep things separate.

 

If you could have been the author of any book ever written, which book would you choose?

Tough question. Okay, I would probably narrow it down to Stephen King’s It, or Dan Simmons’ The Terror. I love both books dearly, and think both are monuments of horror. Obviously, It is more well known, but The Terror is nearly flawlessly written and full of so much detail and research that it was mindboggling to me while reading (it’s the exact kind of book I could never actually write).

 

Pen or type writer or computer?

Computer. I like the idea of writing with a pen, and have done so before, but ultimately it was just adding in an extra step to the process since I had to transcribe it onto the computer anyway.

 

Tell us about a favorite character from a book.

Easy. The protagonist, Owen. I felt connected to him very early on. He’s like a caged tiger, just waiting for somebody to carelessly leave the door unlocked. He’s my opposite in so many ways, that I kinda sorta want to be him. At least, have his confidence, not the whole violence thing. That I don’t want.

 

What made you want to become an author and do you feel it was the right decision?

It’s hard for me to pinpoint the exact moment I decided to try my hand at writing. I’ve always been a creative person, and even went to school for animation, so that desire to tell a story was sort of always there. But the catalyst which heralded my writing career in earnest was the birth of my first child. Lelaina Blue. She signaled a turning point for me, a loud, flashing sign that said, “DO SOMETHING WITH YOUR LIFE!”

A day in the life of the author?

Get up and drive my kids to school. I am not a morning person, so this process is painful and messy to watch. Afterward, I hit the local library and write from 9am till about 11am. I like to get in 1500 words a session, and usually come in just above or below that. Once done, I spend another hour beta reading other works, sending emails, and finishing odds and ends (like answering interview questions). The it’s lunchtime. After lunch, I’ll spend some time on social media. Side note, I am not a fan of social media (okay, being real, I kinda hate it), but it’s a valuable tool for authors, so I make time for it. And then the kids are home from school and the author stuff is essentially over for the day.

 

Do you have any advice to offer for new authors?

Write. Every. Day! This sounds like an obvious bit of advice, but it must be said. I used to be very guilty of this. I would take a few days off, or even a week or two, while writing. Inevitably, when I returned to it, I would waste a whole day just trying to get the feel for it again. You can’t beat the momentum everyday writing creates.

 

Describe your writing style.

I would say visceral and descriptive. I want you to really see the space, to smell the stink, to taste the decay. Gross, I know, but it’s what I shoot for.

 

What is your writing process? For instance do you do an outline first? Do you do the chapters first?

I always start with a few paragraphs describing the idea. From there, I begin outlining. I’m definitely team plotter (in the great plotter vs pantser debate), and as such, like to break down almost the entire book before I actually start drafting. My reliance on plotting has burned me in the past though, as a small change early in one particular project snow-balled into a complete rewrite by the end. Because of that, I try and leave some wiggle room in the story during the plotting phase.

 

What is your writing Kryptonite?

Video games! I am a sucker for video games. The worst thing I can do is sit down and “just play for twenty minutes or so”, because that will be the next three hours of my life, and there goes my writing time.

 

Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?

Great question! I would say I try and straddle the line. On the one hand, I want the creative freedom to write whatever the old grey matter conjures up. But, on the other hand, I am trying to be successful and as such, I have to be, at the very least, aware of the marketability of what I’m are writing.

 

If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?

I spent a lot of years trying to tone down my writing voice, only to realize after a lot of heartache, that it was a mistake. At the end of the day, every story has been told, nothing is truly new or unique, so all that matters is how you tell it. Younger me would have benefited well from such advice.

 

How long on average does it take you to write a book?

I haven’t written all that many yet, but I would say, on average, about a year.

 

Do you believe in writer’s block?

I absolutely do! Thankfully, I’ve not felt it much myself, but I have friends that suffer from this to a debilitating degree. It is real and it is awful.

C.M. Forest, also known as Christian Laforet, is the author of the novel Infested, as well as the novella We All Fall Before the Harvest. A self-proclaimed horror movie expert, he spent an embarrassing amount of his youth watching scary movies. When not writing, he lives in Ontario, Canada with his wife, kids, three cats and a pandemic dog named Sully who has an ongoing love affair with a blanket.

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