Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Blog Tour: Kids From the River by Mark G. Cosman



Young Adult / New Adult Dystopian
Date Published: July 2014

As the current age thunders to a close, five kids are playing together in a river that runs through a forest to the sea. All the while, the society they are soon to inherit is disintegrating. The story follows the diverse predispositions of the kids from the river into adulthood as they define their evolving personalities, amidst the chaos of their decaying world.
Marauding insurgents continually sweep down upon a teetering world government from autonomous northern frontiers, causing human suffering and misery.
As adults, the kids from the river take separate paths to finding love and losing it, to ascending on meteoric careers and plunging into the depths of self-destruction.
The desperate times open the way for Senator Aaron Mire, a charismatic charlatan, whose campaign is awash in conspiracies which polarize the kids from the river.
Amy Ramsey, a kid from the river, becomes the beautiful standard bearer for the Senator’s Genesis Party. Her position clashes with her father, John Ramsey, renowned as the “last great man.” Chairman of the world’s most successful company and the inventor of the mysterious Moon Glow project, John Ramsey is Mire’s most feared adversary.
Ramsey’s personal life is haunted by the memory of a fire-fight while on active duty patrol in the northern frontier, when he discovers his estranged son, born of an affair more than twenty years before, is among the insurgents he has killed.
James, a cheat and a liar when he was a kid in the river, maintains a twisted erotic passion for Amy, but her love since childhood has always been Max Morgan. With his powerful position in Mire’s New Order, James has Max imprisoned, using criminal connections and manufactured evidence to falsely link Max to terrorist activities.
Max’s claustrophobic isolation in prison is made painfully real by the prison experiences I witnessed as a prison corrections officer, while working my way through college, and years later, through interaction with my daughter’s murderer. While sequestered in isolation, Max battles ever encroaching madness to find liberation in a state of mind.  
With Max locked away, James uses Amy to exact his erotic victory. Soon thereafter, his company is involved in an air traffic tragedy in which hundreds of lives are lost. James is indicted and is facing a lengthy prison term. At the same time, evidence surfaces to exonerate Max, resulting in his release.
As Senator Mire’s mystique grows, John Ramsey becomes infected with the dreaded Tezca virus, a pandemic plaguing the world’s population. Ramsey is able to self-analyze his dying experience during intermittent bolts of awareness that rifle through the black night of his coma. When next the kids from the river reconvene, it is at John Ramsey’s funeral.
James is already a withered, broken man facing years of incarceration. Max and Amy are, at long last, reunited. Together, they set the past is adrift downriver, around the bend and out of sight forever.
In these desperate times to come, the duration of life and memory diminish. 


REVIEW
I think that the premise of this novel is one that is very promising. I liked where Mark Cosman took it, it just seemed a while to get there. I would have liked a bit of a more even flow with the plot. 

The characters were definitely well developed and fun to read about. Overall this was a great young adult dystopian novel. 






Mark Cosman’s writing began when his daughter, Berlyn, was murdered following her high school prom. It was when he left the rubble of his beliefs and assumptions to go in search of answers to the most profound questions we humans ask ourselves. His first book, “A Flower in the Snow” and later, “The Kids from the River” are the result of that odyssey.

Facebook: mark cosman. 





PROMO: For the Eye Sees Not Itself



Urban Fantasy / Erotica / Menage / MMF
Date Published: November 12, 2014

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The SIS team has dealt with all sorts of things that go bump in the night--vampires, zombies, even demons. But not everything odd or occult walks or breathes. The CIA calls on SIS leader John Benchley to alert him to a strange set of occurrences around an abandoned house in Baltimore. Investigating, the SIS team stumbles on to something unprecedented and deadly. And not every SIS member gets away from their encounters unscathed.
Life continues to go on--even around vampires, mad scientists and demons. SIS FBI liaison Gabrielle Dichenz, who is the lover of both John Benchley and Evan Garrett, John’s boyfriend, is coming to terms with her new life.  Recovering from her past with an abusive ex means looking closely at her present. Evan’s waiting patiently to integrate both of his lovers into his wider life. John, on the other hand, isn’t the sort of personality who takes well to waiting. There’s something really good growing between the three of them. Gabrielle just has to decide whether to truly grab for the brass ring or let her past dictate the shape of her future.


EXCERPT

John placed a hand on the doorknob. He already had a slightly creepy feeling about this place and he wondered if it had to with the reputed ley lines that Fiona had indicated might be beneath the house. The knob twisted with moderate ease and he pushed the door open.  “No need to break out the lock picks.”
There were signs of scuffed footprints through the dust and dirt in the foyer and he stood motionless for a moment just looking inside.
“Are we going in or what?” asked Todd.
“Yeah, yeah. Todd, you and Cecelia check upstairs. Rich, circle around back and see if there’s a door there. Evan and I will start on this floor.
There was a murmur of assent from the team members, and they began to head in separate directions. Evan was left standing a few feet behind John.
“Is it just me or does this place kind of make your skin crawl?” asked Evan.
John glanced back at him. “No, it’s not just you. Any thoughts as to why?”
Evan stepped in the direction of the front room and stood studying the decorative molding above the door. “Take a look at the corners,” he said pointing to the square blocks topping the corners. “Those look like Thelemic stars to me.” He pointed to the two overlapping chevron’s carved into the wood. It was all stained the same color and the symbols were not immediately apparent.
“Thelemic… that ritual magic stuff right?”

“Not just ritual, more along the lines of ceremonial, and more specifically utilized heavily by the Crowley crowd. I think theremight be more than one version of the stars, but I don’t know offhand what the differences might indicate.”
“Okay this definitely leans in the direction of supporting some of last few things that Fiona found. You take the right hand rooms as we move toward the back of the house and I’ll take the left. It should only take us a few minutes to go through,” said John.
***
Evan walked into the dimly lit room near the back of the house. It had one window, much smudged and cobwebbed that let some daylight in. Along the wall was a dusty broken chair, a fabric duffle bag and a pair of beer cans. He turned around to glance at the walls behind him, near the door. On the right hand side of the door hung a long narrow mirror in a heavy, dark, carved frame. He was standing at a sharp angle to it and couldn’t see his own reflection. Heading toward the duffle bag, he glanced at the mirror again. His image was wavy, distorted and he idly wondered how old the glass was. Something drew his eye.
In the reflection Evan saw a man behind him, and he whirled around to face the stranger. Gabrielle’s body was sprawled limply on the floor. Tom Garner, Brie’s psycho ex-boyfriend, was kneeling beside her, a knife in his hand, stabbing her again and again. Evan screamed, “NO!” He tackled the man and knocked him backward to the floor.
***
As John reached the back door and met Rich in the narrow kitchen, he wondered if Evan had found anything. “Go check upstairs and see if Todd and Cecelia need any help. I wonder of this place has a basement or just a crawl space. Look for a door that goes down,” he said to Rich.
“On it.”
John backtracked and veered into the very abbreviated hallway that separated two of the rear rooms. He glanced into the left hand one, empty, unless you counted dust and a squashed soda can.
“Yo, Evan. Find anything?” he called out. He looked into the right hand one. Evan was standing motionless, staring into an empty corner, his hand outstretched. John started toward him.  “Ev’?”
Suddenly Evan lunged at him, screaming. They went down in a tangle. Evan’s hands wrapped around John’s throat, and he began banging John’s head on the edge of the door frame. The first blow stunned John and he flailed helplessly against the floor. The second was a bolt of agony through the back of his head. He could barely breathe, Evan’s hands were wrapped so tightly around his throat. The blows continued and consciousness was fading into blackness. Evan was still screaming at him, “No! NO! You killed her! Oh God you killed her!”




About the Author

A.R. Moler is a chemistry professor at a community college, a homeschooling mom and an avid science fiction fan. She is a devotee of first hand research for her writing whenever possible and to this end has - learned to fire a handgun, been rappelling, ridden with both EMS and the police, flown a helicopter, bought a motorcycle and learned to ride it. She has traveled to nearly all the places where her stories are set and taken hundreds of photos for documentation. She has been writing since her high school years, but only recently has become published. She recently launched a website for her writing http://armoler.com
Her blog is www.playdohstoichiometry.blogspot.com and is entitled Playdoh, Legos and Stoichiometry. When asked why such a name for her blog, she commented that it reflects 3 of the many phases of her life. Her daughter has been an avid playdoh artist, her son owns enough Legos is fill a 55-gallon drum and the stoichiometry--one of the most challenging topics to many chemistry students. Her husband's only contribution to chemistry is brewing beer.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Blog Tour: The Cancer Club by Lucinda Sue Crosby #review




Women's Fiction / Health / Humor
Date Published: October 14, 2014

Top-ten finalist in the Next Best Fiction Author Contest by Hampton Roads Publishing and Hierophant Publishing
Significant inspiration for this book was provided by the writings and life of stage and TV actress and Jim Henson puppeteer Eren Ozker (1948 -1993)
Meet writer Marly Mitchellshe a successful late-30s writer who plans a healing journey with loving friends to her favorite vacation destinations in search of PEACE after recovering from a mastectomy. But right now she's finding it hard to focus on the future.
"Once I had dragged my strung-out self from the winged torture chamber and slumped onto a row of rock-hard, fake-Naugahyde airport chairs, people shied away from sitting beside me. And who could blame them? It wasn't a comfortable seat to sit on, and I wasn't a comfortable person to sit next to." Marley acknowledges.
Thank God for the angels of mercy, albeit with tart tongues and scathing truths, Marly calls the Cancer Club, who share and share alike their pain and fear in a way only fellow sufferers can understand. This poignant, sexy, humorous and inspirational novel is bound to become a book club favorite.
˃˃˃ Always finding love in the wrong places:
Luis; he was a primo example of that.
Marly met him at UCLA in 1973. He was sleek-looking, with hair the color of milk chocolate and skin to match. He sported a thin moustache and a delicate scar over his left eyebrow that I Marly referred to as his dueling wound. (Actually, it arrived after a flip off the old bicycle at age six.) He was a second generation Spanish-American with a passion for life and sex.
He always smelled great.
Then came Spring Break - that's where she met Sandy.
A social bunch, Marley's Dad invites Sandy to dinner. At 9 p.m. Luis showed up.
Flash forward - now on vacation with no desire of any entanglements, Marley is distancing herself from all former lovers. Feeling vulnerable and questioning if she can still be appealing with as she puts it, "missing body parts," getting intimate isn't on her priority list. But then she meets Chris ...
˃˃˃ The Cancer Club:
Marly was in the throes of an emotional breakdown. She scraped bare and was beaten down by her chemo treatment schedule. The word "cancer" echoed through her head during her waking hours like a death knell. She couldn't turn off the voice of doom in her head with alcohol or sex or food. She couldn't exercise herself into a deep enough oblivion to truly rest.
The strength of soul she'd come to rely on in her teens and had always regarded as her personal fail-safe had disappeared like smoke on a windy day. She didn't care to live. She didn't care to be. Before her fight against cancer, she'd had zero empathy for the reasons people gave up. She was smugly convinced that every human being could find the strength they needed if they only looked for it.
How wrong she had been.
Ah the Cancer Club - there truly is strength in numbers and how therapeutic to speak with others who understand and share similar experiences. It was there Marly learned to laugh again, to live and to find herself - her true self. 


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Review

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I loved the witty, yet real way Lucinda Sue Crosby has tackled the very real subject of Cancer. I'm not going to lie, it is a tearjerker, but the way that Marly deals with her diagnosis and life after is truly beautiful. I'd like to think that this book will help anyone dealing with Cancer or anything like it. 






Lucinda Sue Crosby is an Amazon bestselling author, an award-winning journalist, political blogger, environmental activist, a published & recorded Nashville songwriter and a commissioned poet. In her younger days, she also enjoyed a career as a Hollywood actress, played professional tennis and spent several seasons as an In-Demand tennis commentator for the WTA tour.
Crosby has had a love affair with the written word since she was three years old when she accidentally taught herself to read. Her twin passions for a delicious character-driven narrative and multi-level storytelling about “things that MATTER” have led her to tackle the array of above-mentioned word-centric genres as well as her currently flourishing literary career. For this, she earned selection by TheAuthorShow.com in 2011 as One of 50 Great Authors You Should be Reading.
Her first novel, Francesca of Lost Nation, has earned six five literary prizes and is an Amazon bestseller.  Highly productive, Crosby has also authored three other Kindle bestsellers: The Adventures of Baylard Bear - a story about being DIFFERENT (a children's fiction with an adoption theme for ages 4 to10); … $ell more Ebook$ - How to increase sales and Amazon rankings using Kindle Direct Publishing (co-written with Laura Dobbins, this is a book marketing guide for new indie authors); and Why Is Pookie Stinky? (also with Dobbins, a charmingly illustrated rhyming picture book about a rescued terrier and her fun interactions with her human family and unusual critters).
Crosby’s latest release is already proving a fan favorite: The CANCER CLUB – a crazy, sexy, inspirational novel of survival. A thumbnail sketch: Fighting breast cancer requires courage, optimism, guts, loving support, faith and a sense of the absurd. If you survive, reclaiming your life is even tougher … Follow Marly Mitchell’s journey through denial, anger, “why me?”, the mythology of boobs in western culture and a dehumanizing, enraging and even hilarious sequence of events that causes her to rethink and redefine her deepest self.
Finally, on Amazon, check out Crosby’s disturbing and eye-opening extended essay called Water in the West: the scary truth about our most precious resource. Water is THE resource issue of the 21st Century which guarantees that its price will skyrocket. Citing an array of expert opinions and scientific studies Crosby researched during her years as a water conservation educator, this book addresses some vital topics: how to discover where your water comes from; how to discover if the source is secure and sustainable for generations to come; the alarming state of crumbling water infrastructure in America; what one person can do to conserve personally,  make water agencies more accountable and provide better communal stewardship for distressed water sources.



Monday, December 15, 2014

Release Blitz: Transition by @quixotickatie



Paranormal / Dystopian
Date Published: December 15, 2014

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Peace is just a breath between battles for Mira. Hardened by slavery and war, she longs for the simpler life, knowing that it might never be hers to enjoy. There is always another battle waiting to be fought, another foe on the horizon. Peace between humans, vampires, and otherkin may be nothing more than a dream, but Mira holds out hope.
It is during this brief respite that Mira is gifted one of her greatest weapons. Though it brings with it memories of a time when she was not so jaded it also comes with a reminder of terrible pain and loss. Awakening deeply hidden emotions within her, If Mira can use this to her advantage, she’ll have a new ally in the next battle to come.


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About the Author

Katie Salidas, author of the Immortalis series (Urban Fantasy), Consummate Therapy series (Erotica), and the recently released Chronicles of the Uprising (Dystopian) is a Jill of all Trades. She’s a Super Woman endowed with special powers and abilities, beyond those of other mortals. Katie can get the munchkins off to gymnastics, cheerleading, Girl Scouts, and swim lessons; put hot food on the table, assist with homework, baths, and bedtime… And, she still finds the time to keep the hubby happy (nudge nudge wink wink). She can do all of this and still have time to write.

And if you can believe all of those lies, there is some beautiful swamp land in Florida for sale…

Katie Salidas resides in Las Vegas, Nevada. Mother to three, Wife to one, and slave to the craft of writing, she does try to do it all, often causing sleep deprivation and many nights passed out at the computer. Writing is her passion, and she hopes that her passion will bring you hours of entertainment.

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Twitter: @quixotickatie



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Blog Tour: Lies a River Deep by @verajanecook #review #giveaway





General Fiction / Women's Fiction
Date Published: March 1, 2012

   
 In the summer of 1962, at a high school graduation party, Bessie Day Hardy is victim to a brutal crime. Fifty years later, the consequences of that horrific night will transition into unforeseen events that will shatter her serene and uncomplicated life.



Review

This is a novel that definitely needs the right reader. It did take a bit to get going but overall I enjoyed Vera Jane Cook's writing style. 

This definitely deals with harsh subject matter, but I really enjoyed the way the author has shed light on the lasting effects of trauma such as Bessie's. 





Pharaoh's Star is Vera Jane Cook's most recent release. The Story of Sassy Sweetwater was Vera Jane’s second southern fiction novel and was a finalist in the ForeWord book of the Year Awards for 2012 and received a five star ForeWord Clarion review, as well as an Eric Hoffer honorable mention award for ebook fiction in 2013. Dancing Backward in Paradise also received a 5 Star Clarion ForeWord review and an Eric Hoffer notable new fiction award in 2006, as well as the Indie Excellence Award in 2006. Also by Vera Jane Cook: Lies a River Deep, Where the Wildflowers Grow, Marybeth, Hollister & Jane and Annabel Horton, Lost Witch of Salem. Her next novel, Pleasant Day will be published in 2015 by Moonshine Cove Press.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Blog Tour: Winged by April Kelly



General Fiction
Date Published: November 2, 2011


2014 FIRST PLACE WINNER for GENERAL FICTION - KINDLE BOOK PROMO / LUCKYCINDA INTERNATIONAL BOOK CONTEST. 


What if the cavalier decision you made about your child the day she was born had the power to reverberate for more than thirty years, dividing the nation, costing three people their lives, and destroying your family? 

Homeless teen Allison Fitzgerald believes the two tiny membranes on her baby’s back are not, as the doctors claim, a surgically correctable birth defect, but a pair of wings. And after having a vision of her child flying, she names her Angel. 

The “wings” will never flap, fly or lift the child off the ground, but they will engender in Angel a dangerous obsession with flying, an obsession that will one day drive her to attempt the impossible. 

A darkly comic contemporary reframing of the Icarus and Daedalus myth, WINGED ex-plores the lengths to which a mother will go to protect her child, and ultimately offers a message of salvation, not just for the family involved, but for all mankind.


This novel is not for the faint of heart. It is different than most things I have read and at times I got frustrated with where the story was going. Then I thought to myself, doesn't this happen in most movies or in real life? Things dont always go your way and it takes the best authors to "go there" and take the reader to places they dont expect to go emotionally. I felt like April Kelly really succeeded in creating an intriguing and original novel.




I was born on Long Island to military parents who would have much preferred a new dining room set. After a peripatetic childhood I did hard time at the University of South Florida before moving to Los Angeles to be either a stand-up comic or a writer.



Since writing paid actual money while doing stand-up did not, I signed onto the original writing staff of MORK AND MINDY, leaving two seasons later after having written 15 of the initial 52 episodes, one of which was a finalist for the Humanitas Prize.



I then relocated to New York to write and produce the premier season of LOVE, SIDNEY, starring Tony Randall and Swoosie Kurtz, the first prime-time comedy featuring an openly gay lead character (many years before WILL AND GRACE) and the show for which I received my second Emmy nomination.



Back to the west coast, I wrote and produced series such as 9 to 5 (the TV version of the feature film), TEACHERS ONLY, starring Lynn Redgrave, and WEBSTER, before co-creating the first half-hour comedy specifically made for cable, SANCHEZ OF BEL AIR.



From 1987 to 1991 I stopped doing TV staff work so I could take a four-year course at the oldest homeopathic medical school in England. During that time I worked strictly freelance, supporting myself by writing made-for-television movies and mini-series.



After graduating from The College of Homeopathy in London, I returned to television, co-creating the series BOY MEETS WORLD which ran on ABC from 1993 to 2000.  The remake, GIRL MEETS WORLD, is running on the Disney Channel right now.



In 2000 I moved to a farm in Tennessee, where I now write less soul-sucking material than TV scripts. I have two dogs who stay with me more from Stockholm syndrome than any genuine feeling of affection.





PROMO: Pest Control by @sofiadianagabel #excerpt #giveaway




Environmental Satire / Thriller
Date Published: November 24, 2014

Joseph Vogorev hates spiders and loves money. As the president and CEO of chemical giant Pest No More, he develops a neurotoxin pesticide specially formulated to target only arachnid species. When outspoken environmentalist Gale Pacalis realizes the potential for planet-wide devastation, he wants more than anything to bring Vogorev down. With a host of quirky friends, he collects data to prove Arach-No-More’s lethality. Teenaged Amelia joins his group because she’s personally invested; her pink kneed tarantula, Pinky, died. It’s a race to save the world, but as Gale and his friends go head-to-head with Vogorev, the many obstacles they face makes it seem impossible to win. Mainly because Vogorev has unlimited money and a limited conscience.



Excerpt

Vogorev waved the aerosol can in the air. “The specialized and patented nozzle on this can disperses the contents at five hundred feet per second. Not exactly the speed of light, but still pretty damn quick.” He chuckled.

There was a strained silence and then a lone high-pitched voice called out, “Those are spiders up there!”

Gale looked up at a tank right above his head. The lady was right. The outline of spiders pressed against the plastic was unmistakable; all of those little legs writhing and clawing to get out. There had to be thousands of them in the tanks, throwing themselves against the side as if they were crazy. Before anyone else had the chance to react, a scraping sound echoed off the walls as the bottom of the containers slid open and hairy tarantulas rained down over the audience amid screams and shrieks. Gale stared at Vogorev and saw how he calmly depressed the spray nozzle for several seconds, then smiled and took a few steps backward.

The audience was frenzied, jumping up and down, brushing eight-legged bodies off their pin-striped suits and designer dresses. Gale shook a spider off his head and stepped over a couple of carcasses as the investors exchanged horrified glances with one another. They were trembling and shuddering and holding onto each other. The spiders, however, did nothing.

When Vogorev spoke, the people paid attention as if he was a messiah, “I told you to trust me. Look around. The spiders are all dead. They were dead long before they even hit the ground.”

Gale picked up a carcass at his feet. True to Vogorev’s word, the spider was dead. They were all dead. Thousands of tarantulas lay on the floor as if a mass arachnid suicide had just occurred.





About the Author

Sofia Diana Gabel started life in Sydney, Australia, but her family moved to the United States when she was very young. Home wasn’t settled for a long time and included living in Toronto, Canada; Henrietta and Buffalo, New York; Northridge, Southern California; a short stint back in Sydney, Australia; Reno, Nevada; Dallas, Texas; Daytona Beach, Florida, with an eventual semi-settled life in Ojai and Ventura, Southern California as a single parent to her three daughters.

Perhaps the unsettled partial nomadic lifestyle is the reason she loves to travel and is never fully satisfied with where she’s living. Moving around and travelling to different countries are adventures which serve as potential settings and plots for stories. A multi-genre fiction writer, with degrees in environmental science and archaeology, and coursework in creative writing and criminal justice, she enjoys being out in nature, keeping up on archaeological discoveries and learning about the law, criminal behavior and police procedures (all with, once again, potential for stories!)

When she's not glued to her desk writing or researching, she loves to spend time with her family and hairless Sphynx cats. Writing is a true passion, born from a love of the written word and how those words can transport the reader to different places or worlds and deliver them back to reality, safe and sound.

Author Links

Twitter: @sofiadianagabel



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Giveaway

One print copy of Pest Control

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