Tag Archive | Monster Mash

Monster Mash Book Blitz -Day 12

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Riptide: Betrayal of Blood by Claudette Melanson

The 3rd book in the 1st of several trilogies featuring Maura & her family!

 
day-12-coverMaura has never felt so alone in her life…nor has her existence ever been so overshadowed by peril…

Not only do both her parents—her distant but loving mother and recently- returned father—remain absent from her life, but due to the hideous error in judgement executed in collusion with her best friend, Valdamir, and adoptive sister, Susie, Maura has been cut off from the pair’s friendship and support, forbidden by both her father and the fallout from the dire outcome to see either of them. The heartbreak she suffers, brought on by the weight of these estrangements, is only intensified by the continued mysterious absence of her supernaturally-destined mate, Ron…whose disappearance delivers grave consequences Maura would have never dreamed possible…

Despised by her vampire cousin, Aldiva, for reasons Maura cannot yet comprehend, the young changeling will be forced to guard her back with every step, as she comes to realize this member of her vampire family would love nothing more than to bring about her demise. Aldiva’s wrath calls forth other members from both Vancouver covens, forcing them to rush to Maura’s aid—even though her father, their king, has expressly forbidden the other vampires to initiate contact with his daughter. Will her extended family on Vancouver Island obey, abandoning Maura to her doom, or will they instead rebel against Maxwell’s wishes in order to save her life?

In addition to the menace personified in her unsolicited enemy, the unlikely vampire princess will find herself drowning as she is pulled down into the depths of a far more devastating crisis…one which may condemn her to a fate she considers much more undesirable than death. But in order to tear herself free from the deadly pull which is drawing her under, Maura must enlist the help of her preternatural family, exposing her newfound friends to a danger none of them have ever had the misfortune to face before. Can she be saved or will the riptide drag Maura under…along with those she loves the most…

In this third and final book of The Maura DeLuca Trilogy,the first of several trilogies to come, the reader will delve even deeper into the secrets guarded by Maura’s father, the mystery of Ron’s role in her life and the identities of the mysterious Vancouver Island Coven members who have, up until now, remained hidden in the shadows. This trilogy rounds out the segment of Maura’s life during which she discovers she is a member of The Born—a human destined to complete her transformation into a vampire! This series of young adult fantasy novels has been enjoyed by readers of nearly every age and are found by them to be dramatically different from any other vampire books they have read in the past. Discover a magical world filled with fae, angels, elves, pixies and other enchanting creatures in addition to two families made up of some of the most likeable vampires—for the most part—to ever exist.

 

~ Amazon ~ Google Play ~ iBooks ~ Smashwords ~ Kobo ~ B&N ~

 

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day-12-authorClaudette Melanson writes & edits in Kitchener, Ontario, with her husband Ron and four bun babies: Tegan, Pepper, Butters & Beckett. She graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a BA in English and an MA in Literature. She’s wished to be a Vampire since age five. She hopes to one day work full time as an author, since there are many, many books living inside her head.

In her spare time she enjoys watching Japanese Anime and reading vampire stories….along with other great fiction. She is also very interested in good health and is an advocate of Ketogenic eating, using whole and natural foods. Her favorite foods are bulletproof coffee, cashew flour crust pizza and treats made with xylitol and almond, coconut or cashew flours.

Future dreams include writing many more books and spending more time with her son Jacob. Her biggest dream is to make Universal Halloween Horror Nights a yearly event with hubby and son. A Rabbit Rescue fanatic, she also hopes to help rescues all over the world save many innocent lives.

 

~ Facebook ~ Website ~ Amazon ~ Twitter ~ Goodreads ~ Pinterest ~ Book Gorilla ~

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Q&A With the Author:

6. Now that we’ve gotten to know each other, tell me a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

We walked into the shelter with the pet carrier.
“We came to see Tegan,” I told the lady at the counter.
“Oh yes, I got your email. You’re Claudette?”
“Yes.”
“Right this way.”
We peeked into the room at the two bunny cages stacked on top of one another. Tegan had the sweetest eyes…just as he had in the picture on the Rabbit Rescue site which had drawn me to him. He was easily four times the size of the dwarf bunny in the cage below him.
“He’s really big,” Ron said. “Aren’t you worried he might hurt Cuddles?”
“Are you kidding? Remember, you’re talking about Cuddles.” I turned to the volunteer. “Can I go in and see him?”
“Sure.” A heartbeat later we were inside the room, and the lady was taking Tegan from his cage. “Do you want to sit on the floor?”
Tegan came over to me immediately. It was like he knew we were always meant to be together. His thin grey and white spotted body crawled over my own tall frame, his nose, heart-shaped with its white outline, skimming my skin to take me in. “His ear…”
“That’s just starting to heal up.” It looked like something…or someone…had torn a notch from the outside edge closest to his body.
“How did this happen to him?”
“We don’t know. Rabbit Rescue brought him to the shelter.”
I started to rise, but Tegan pounced onto my chest in desperation, as if begging me not to go. “Don’t worry, buddy; you’re coming with us. Ron, bring the carrier in here. We’ll take him,” I said to the woman, who quickly exited to print out the adoption paperwork. Ron placed the open carrier on the floor, and after the briefest of whiffs, Tegan leapt in, eager to go home.

 
 

Snippet:

“I know what you did to your friend,” she stated, throwing my tenuous hold on my mental axis to the stabbing wintry wind.
My defenses kicked in, brought purely to light by some unfamiliar instinct. “I didn’t… It was Susie…” Shame flooded my entire being.
“You turned her. It was your doing, ultimately,” she articulated with icy absolution.
It hadn’t been I alone who’d turned her, but I wouldn’t have mentioned my lost friend, Valdamir, for a pint of fresh, warm blood. I feared for his life and safety enough already. Still, her words gave pause to the blood in my veins and reminded me of my part in the murder of one of my best friends, Amanda.
Aldiva stalked after me, toppling me over with the smallest push of her slight index finger. Her eyes blazed at me… I’d never known blue could hold such fire.
I scrabbled backward like an upside-downed tortoise—ineffective—my palms scraping over the thorny rocks. The saltwater’s sharp sting was barely registered by my mind. Her gaze was far more cutting.
If there had been anyone around to watch such a ridiculous display, I’m sure they would have been left bewildered—me, scuttling backward like the world’s clumsiest crab—backing away in horrified haste from a young girl of such slight stature, who appeared much more angel than demon from a distance.
“YOU broke our peace. You disrupted the harmony of my family.” She pointed her icicle finger at me as she hissed out her rage. “Maxwell can keep his mate, but I will deny him his daugh…”
The chilled idea of sudden, unavoidable death assaulted me with a cold unlike any I’d ever felt before—even the preternatural touch of my father’s skin—and it permeated me long after the threat had been nullified.

 
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Monster Mash Book Blitz -Day 11

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Master of Malice Book One: The Scarecrow by Cas Peace

 
day-11-coverPure evil resists all attempts to destroy it, seeking only its ultimate vengeance.
Three years have passed since Reen’s trial and exile and changes have occured at the Manor. Taran now resides in Loxton Castle as Elias’s Court Artesan, with Sullyan, General Blaine, and Colonel Vassa all making regular tours of guard duty there. Accused of corrupting her daughter Princess Seline, the disgraced former queen, Sofira, has been exiled to Bordenn, where she nurses a bitter heart. And a terrible scarecrow creature has taken roost in a dank cell below the palace of Lerric, Sofira’s father.
Word reaches Sullyan of Reen’s suicide. The lack of a body and a series of dreadful events in Port Loxton—a vicious murder, a brutal ambush, and a devastating fire—raise doubts in her mind. She launches an investigation, unsuspecting of the evil that’s about to be unleashed…

Amazon ~

 
day-11-authorCas lives in the lovely county of Hampshire, southern UK, where she was born. On leaving school she trained for two years before qualifying as horse-riding instructor. During this time she also learned to carriage-drive. She spent thirteen years in the British Civil Service before moving to Rome, Italy, where she and her husband, Dave, lived for three years. They enjoy returning whenever they can. Cas supports many animal charities and owns two rescue dogs. She has a large collection of cacti and loves gardening. She is also a folk singer/songwriter and is currently writing and recording nine folk-style songs to accompany each of her fantasy books. You can listen to and download all the songs from her website.
See the video of her performing live at the King’s Enjoy book launch here!

Facebook ~ Website ~ BlogTwitter ~ Reverbnation ~

 
Q&A With the Author:

3. What do you fear most?

I’m claustrophobic, so being trapped in a tiny dark space would be my worst ever fear. I don’t enjoy flying because of it, although I make myself do it. My second greatest fear is thunderstorms – I seem to be quite stupidly phobic about them, too!

4. What is your largest unfulfilled dream, and what are you doing to reach it?

When I left school, my greatest desire was to be a top-notch horse rider and showjumper. Unfortunately, I don’t have very good balance, so although I’m a reasonable rider, I never made the grade to be top-notch. I got over the disappointment and now simply take pleasure in what riding I can do. I adore Frieisian horses and write about them in my books.

 

Snippet:

“Daughter, forgive me, but I must ask you again; are you sure, are you completely sure this is what you want? You haven’t seen him yet, you haven’t spoken with him. I have to tell you, he is not the man you remember, no matter what his letters suggested.”
Lerric was sitting with Sofira on the bed in her luxuriously appointed chamber, autumn sunlight streaming through the window. Its warmth helped alleviate the horror he still felt after his earlier meeting with the creature Sofira had begged him to save. The king held fast to his daughter’s hands, mainly to disguise the tremble of his own, but also to convey his intense unease. He looked earnestly into her hard gray eyes and willed her to hear his concern. Despite his fear, he was loath to reveal precisely what had taken roost in that fetid cell far beneath the palace floors.
Sofira stared back at him, hearing his care for her, seeing his distress. But it seemed she could not understand his concern, for her brittle eyes glazed with tears. “Don’t you want me to have back what was taken from me, Father?” Her colorless face was animated with hurt. “You know how unhappy I’ve been since I was forced to return here. You know how I ache for my children.”
Lerric nodded. “I know it’s been hard for you. At least at the castle Elias allowed you access to them—”
“Access?” Sofira snarled. “What use is access to me? Never allowed to be alone with them, never to take them out of my prison, never to walk in the park with them? He doled out time with them as if giving tidbits to a dog, and kept me kenneled like one, too. And I a Queen! How could you condone that?”
Lerric thought better of reminding his daughter she had ceased to be a queen when Elias dissolved their marriage. And in light of what she had done—misled by Reen or not, she couldn’t pretend ignorance of the risks she had run—Lerric considered her fortunate not to have suffered the death penalty. Not that he could tell her that, either.
He spoke soothingly. “I didn’t say I condoned it, daughter, and you know I never wanted to see you separated from Eadan and Seline. It’s just that . . . Sofira, are you absolutely convinced Hezra is sane?”
Sofira froze. She stared at her father, a biting retort on her lips. But then she realized he was only trying to protect her, clumsy though he was. She relaxed her spine and smiled.
“Oh, Father, of course I’m sure. Do you think I wouldn’t know if something had affected his mind? It’s a clever ruse, a ploy he’s devised to make them relax their vigilance. Didn’t you read his letters? Didn’t you feel the sincerity in his words, his deep desire to restore all I’ve lost? And don’t forget, my restoration will also benefit you. You’ll be more than recompensed for your trouble and the support you continue to give us. We’ll not forget you or Bordenn when I am once again Albia’s High Queen.”
Lerric doubted that. He had seen the light of fanaticism in the scarecrow’s eyes, the driving desire to control, the fervid lust for revenge at any cost. Reen might be willing to accept the title of consort for now, but Lerric would not bet much on him being happy with a supporting role for long, not once the reins of power were in his hands. Sofira was clearly already under his spell. He had cunningly charmed her from within his prison, writing her words of contrition, loyalty, and love. In her beleaguered state of angry, lonely sorrow, brought on by the conditions Elias had imposed on her, she had been easy prey.
Lerric shivered. Why should that word—prey—cause his heart to constrict? Why did it conjure images of ragged carrion birds feasting on a corpse?

 

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Monster Mash Book Blitz -Day 10

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31 Ghost Novels to Read Before You Die by Deb Atwood

day-10-coverAs readers of Deb Atwood’s blog Pen In Her Hand know, Atwood is passionate about ghost fiction. Since 2011, Atwood has read, re-read, and written about ghost literature. 31 Ghost Novels to Read Before You Die presents a selection of the best of these posts.

Among the books discussed are old favorites (The Turn of the Screw by Henry James, The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson) as well as some indie gems few people will know about (The 20’s Girl, the Ghost, and All That Jazz by June Kearns). There are ghost novels for every reader, in genres ranging from historical to literary to romance.

Amazon ~ Goodreads ~

 

 

 

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day-10-authorDeb Atwood holds an MFA and lives in California with her husband and rescue dog Nala. Her time-slip novel Moonlight Dancer was selected as a front page Featured Review by Book Ideas. Deb’s work has appeared in numerous anthologies. Her interests include ghost fiction, Korean culture, quilting, and, of course, reading.

Website ~ Twitter ~ Amazon ~ Goodreads ~

 

 

 
 

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Q&A With the Author:

What is the hardest thing you’ve ever done?

Like most people, I have suffered the loss of family members and other loved ones, but none of those losses required a decision on my part. The hardest decision I ever made was to euthanize my dog Emma. Emma had been with the family since she was eight weeks old. She had her flaws–she didn’t particularly like most men, and she could be unfriendly with other dogs. Some dogs she liked, some she didn’t. But she and I shared a sort of parent-child bond. If Emma was hungry or misbehaving, it was always my eye she sought first.

When she was ten, she had an attack of vertigo and nausea that landed her in the hospital for several days. She recovered, but the vertigo never left and was followed in the next couple of years by deafness, cloudy vision, incontinence, and finally, an inability to walk. I carried her, all 50 pounds. Had she been in intractable pain, the decision to euthanize would have been far easier. Emma did not feel pain. She just had no enjoyment of life. I knew the time was nearing, but I didn’t know how to make the decision. Unfortunately, dogs can’t talk. I had to balance her maximum chance at life with the quality of that life. It felt like an awesome responsibility, but then I rescue spiders.

At last I accepted that it was time, and we took Emma to a caring clinic where she experienced a peaceful death.

It was three years before I took on another dog. Now we have Nala, a rather naughty rescue Chow/German Shepherd. I continue to feel the bond of human to canine. The novel I’ve published, along with all the others in various stages of writing, features a dog. I’m currently writing a young adult book that contains a service dog.

What do you fear most?

I fear earthquakes. Ha! The irony of it, you think…I live in California. True, but that’s where my family, friends, and business are located. Recently, my book group read Falling to Earth by Kate Southwood, a heart-wrenching novel about the worst tornado in US history, so I suppose if I lived in the Midwest, I’d fear tornadoes. One way I find tornadoes less scary than earthquakes, though, is that with tornadoes, you often have some warning. Earthquakes can attack you in your sleep. That’s the thing I try not to think about when I go to bed at night.

 

 

Snippet:

I had great fun dipping into The 20’s Girl, the Ghost, and All That Jazz by June Kearns. I loved reading about the main character Gerry draped in her Aunt Leonie 20’s designer fashions from Patou to Vionnet, embellished with guipure lace and tiny seed pearls, especially since the creations are ostentatious in Texas and outdated in England. Gerry often observes herself in social situations overdressed but outdated and with no alternative since she cannot afford to buy a stitch. Nor would she if she could, for she never feels closer to her aunt than when she is wearing her clothes.

This novel will interest people looking for a clean, no-sex romance and would make a fitting mother-daughter book club selection. The Girl, the Ghost, and All That Jazz is not a chilling novel that will send you scurrying to check the deadbolts. Instead, you’ll find yourself warmed by non-traditional family ties and the sparks that fly when romance, along with a high-spirited ghost, is in the air.

 
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Monster Mash Book Blitz -Day 9

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Legacy by Nichole Giles

 
bookcover5_5x8_5_cream_330_legacy-1After the chaos of Mexico, Abby and Kye have lost everything but each other. They’re on the run with no purpose, no allies, and very little money. To make things worse, Abby’s wound from the Arawn Dagger is draining her power, leaving her unable to access her Light, or her Healing ability.

While the hunt for her long-lost father takes them back through Abby’s childhood homes, they’re forced to question everything they’ve been taught and everyone they’ve ever trusted—including each other. After a desperate attempt to Heal Abby’s wound goes horribly awry, and with the demons they thought they’d lost hot on their heels, the star-crossed couple is forced to face some painful realities that will change life for everyone they know.

When Abby’s best friend is kidnapped by demons, Abby and Kye abandon their search and launch a rescue attempt that morphs into a battle, the outcome of which will determine if Abby and her friends have what it takes to rid the world of demons, or if the royal bloodline and the Gifted generation will be obliterated once and for all.

 

Book 3 of The Descendant Series

Amazon ~

 
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1smaller-head-shotNichole Giles, the author of DESCENDANT, BIRTHRIGHT, and WATER SO DEEP, has lived in Nevada, Arizona, Utah, and Texas. She is a huge fan of all things paranormal and magical. Her dreams include owning a garden full of fairies, riding a unicorn, and taming the pet dragon she adopted at a recent local ComiCon. His name is Zane. She also loves to spend time with her husband and four children, travel to tropical and exotic destinations, drive in the rain with the convertible top down, and play music at full volume so she can sing along.

Facebook ~ Twitter ~ Amazon ~

 

 
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Q&A With the Author:

6. Now that we’ve gotten to know each other, tell me a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

Okay, this is actually relevant to my most recent release, Legacy.
We moved around a lot when I was young. Around the time when I was turning eight, we moved into a rental house on a hill in a mountainous area. One day, as I was exploring our new place (I’m pretty sure I was avoiding helping my parents unpack—or otherwise stalling) and closed myself into the bathroom. For some reason, I climbed up on the counter, and in doing so, pulled just right on the middle of the tri-secioned mirror. That mirror opened up and revealed a secret crawlspace, where I used to hide from my (then) three younger brothers and two sisters. Eventually, one of my brothers found out, and the two of us made a pact to not tell the others. It was our secret hideout for the whole time we lived there. I can’t remember if my parents ever knew about that crawlspace, and thinking back, it’s super creepy that it even existed where it was. And yet… I wrote that same crawlspace into Legacy, spurred by a burst of inspiration while completing the last chapters of Legacy. So yes, that crawlspace was real, but no, I absolutely could never find that house again to go see what it really was. But that’s what imagination is for! 

 

Top Ten (or 13) List:

13 Random Facts about Nichole Giles

  1. I am the oldest of eleven children: two biological sisters, four biological brothers, and four step-brothers.
  2. I don’t like to read books that don’t involve some kind of romance, kissing scenes included.
  3. I must have lived during the regency period in a past life, because I love corset-style dresses and costumes. For Halloween, I’ll probably dress up, even though my kids won’t.
  4. My favorite ice cream flavor was discontinued over 10 years ago, but I still hold out hope that Ben and Jerry’s will bring back their Island Paradise flavor.
  5. My favorite food in the world is steamed snow crab.
  6. Whenever I struggle with creating or writing, I like to go for a drive with my convertible top down. I’ve even been known to do this with snow flurries in the air.
  7. Nichole’s ultimate dream house: on a white-sand beach, with lots of windows, palm trees in the yard, a huge patio, and within walking distance to a number of friends’ homes. Also near great shopping. It should also have a dedicated library where I can write.
  8. I have a growing collection of fairies. Statues, paintings, etc. And I’ve started picking up mermaids as well. I love to be surrounded by fantastical creatures.
  9. I have four kids. Two boys, two girls, all nearly grown.
  10. When I was in high school in Arizona, my friends and I haunted a local hangout, where I became highly proficient at playing air hockey.
  11. During my junior year, I had the opportunity to go to New York with my choir, where we sang in Carnegie Hall. We also toured the city, largely without supervision.
  12. My favorite candy includes Kookabura licorice and Black Forest gummies. All varieties of both.
  13. I have kissed a stingray, petted a shark, high-fived a sea otter, and hugged a dolphin, but I have never wrestled an alligator or tried to housebreak a lion—and I don’t think I ever will.

Thanks for hanging out with me for thirteen random facts. You can learn more about me and my books at www.nicholegiles.blogspot.com

 
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Monster Mash Book Blitz -Day 8

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The Blue Virgin by Marni Graff

 
51m7mshaadlDespite a planned move, the mysterious death of photographer Bryn Wallace keeps American writer Nora Tierney glued to Oxford in order to clear her close friend, artist Val Rogan, who has been wrongfully accused of Bryn’s murder. Or has she?

Nora quickly becomes embroiled in the murder investigation, much to the dismay of two men: Detective Inspector Declan Barnes, the senior on the case; and Simon Ramsey, the illustrator of Nora’s children’s book. Simon’s efforts to save Nora from herself become increasingly frantic as Nora is forced to push her way into Declan’s case, using her wits and her wiles to prove Val’s innocence.

The first in a series of Nora Tierney mysteries based in the UK, The Blue Virgin is a compelling story of love and intrigue. Nothing, Nora learns, is what it seems, and even the most innocent of choices can lead to murder and revenge. Set in the ancient city of golden spires, the setting lends itself to mystery, as any Inspector Morse fan will agree. The novel is written in classic English style, complete with a cast of characters and chapter epigraphs that add to its literary feel.

~ Amazon ~ GoodreadsAudible

 

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day-8-authorMarni Graff had a successful career as a registered nurse who wrote on the side before writing full time. She has a degree in English Lit and studied Gothic Mystery at Oxford University in England. She also wrote articles for Mystery Review magazine, where she interviewed many of the authors whose work she admired.

Marni is the award-winning author of The Nora Tierney Mysteries, set in England. The Blue Virgin introduces Nora, an American writer living in Oxford. The Green Remains and The Scarlet Wench trace Nora’s move to the Lake District where murder follows her.  In process is The Golden Hour, set in Bath, England. Premiering in the next few months will be Graff’s new Manhattan series, Death Unscripted, featuring nurse Trudy Genova, a medical consultant for a New York movie studio. This new series is based on Marni’s favorite nursing job in real life.

Marni is also co-author of Writing in a Changing World, a primer on writing groups and critique techniques. She writes crime book reviews at Auntie M Writes and is Managing Editor of Bridle Path Press, an author’s cooperative. A member of Sisters in Crime, Marni runs the NC Writers Read program in Belhaven which allows writers experience reading their work out loud and getting immediate feedback.

Facebook ~ Website ~ Twitter ~

 

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Q&A With the Author:

5. What is the hardest thing you’ve ever done?

Persevering to get that first book into print. I wrote for years on the side, then finally was able to write full time. Once I had been signed by an agent I thought I’d made it, but three years later he hadn’t been able to sell either of my first two books. Then I met a group of women and one started her own indie press and I decided to take the plunge and bring out the books with her. I’ve never looked back.

6. Now that we’ve gotten to know each other, tell me a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

My first trip to England happened in my early 20’s. I stepped off the plane with my (then) husband for a week of rugby games and despite never having traveled outside the US before, felt like I was coming home. Despite the streets and names and towns all being new to me, there was a sense of recognition that happened and has happened each time I travel back to anywhere in the UK. I’ve been fleetingly in Scotland and Wales and want to explore those more. I know England the best and have spent several trips doing research for the English mystery series by taking long train rides to new areas, all set up to explore potential settings for the books. Each area has its own feel and customs; each area feels ‘right’ to me, as if I’ve been there before. Whether I visit Cornwall, Devon, the beaches of Brighton, the lights of London, the glorious Lake District–it’s all in my memory banks with a sense of familiarity and rightness. Maybe I have lived there in another life?

 

Top Ten List:

  1. I always have a jigsaw puzzle in progress.
  2. I was a nurse for 30 years.
  3. I was on TV twice playing a nurse on the soap opera “One Life to Live” as part of my medical consulting.
  4. I took German in high school and have a wicked accent but have no idea any longer what I’m saying!
  5. I have a collection of vintage platters and creamers.
  6. I have seven grandchildren.
  7. My dog is an Italian Spinone, a rare breed of hunting hound, named Radar.
  8. A copy of my third Nora Tierney Mystery, The Scarlet Wench, is in the archives of Noel Coward’s estate.
  9. I took German in high school and have a wicked accent but have no idea any longer what I’m saying!
  10. I named Nora’s son, Sean, after my own son, who’ll turn 40 this spring!

 
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Monster Mash Book Blitz -Day 7

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A Devil In Hong Kong by David Harris Lang

 
day-7-coverOn a snowy day in the year 889, Emperor Wu of the Han Dynasty had an epiphany: he was not immortal. His jade carver created the most beautiful jade burial suit in history, finishing just three weeks before the Han Emperor died. When the priceless two-thousand-year-old jade burial suit suddenly goes missing in modern Hong Kong, a brutal competition to find it ensues between rival Chinese, Burmese, and Japanese factions. As they battle for the priceless artifact, a psychotic killer with a Maori tattoo on his face surfaces leaving a trail of dismembered corpses strung together like traditional Burmese puppets. Detectives Ian Hamilton and Angela Cheung follow a trail of hacked bodies and terror through contemporary Hong Kong in their search for the killer.

~Amazon ~ Goodreads ~

 

 

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day-7-authorDavid Harris Lang, a current resident of Hong Kong, has lived and worked in Asia much of his life. Besides being a prolific author of Asian-based thrillers, he is an international architect who brings an indelible sense of place’ to his writing as well as a deep understanding of Asian cultures, locales, and customs. His vivid fight scenes come from a life-long practice of the martial arts. A Devil in Hong Kong is David Lang’s third book.

 ~ Website ~ Amazon ~ Goodreads ~ Facebook ~

 

 

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Q&A With the Author: 

Do you have any pets?

I have had dogs all my life. They are pure unconditional love. People should learn from dogs.

What do you do in your spare time when you’re not writing?

Exercise and eat (I am a bit of a foodie) mostly. Writing is my major spare time activity. I also love exploring Hong Kong where I currently live. It’s a fabulous city with a lot of strange corners.

 

Snippet:

The police boat pulled up to the dock at Snake Bay. Coroner Cindy Leung was waiting for them, slat-thin arms, her torso the circumference of a chopstick, thick glasses too large for her face. She kind of looks like a praying mantis from this angle, Ian thought, looking down on Cindy from the deck of the boat. Cindy waved to him.
“Hey, Cindy,” Ian said when he, Angela, and Nigel were on solid ground.
Cindy, instead of returning the salutation, immediately started up the path. “Follow me, Detectives. Hurry! I left him hanging for you, but I can’t wait to get him to my lab. This is the strangest one I have ever seen.”
“Ok, Cindy, we’re coming. Commissioner Gu said that the victim had been chopped up and wired back together,” Ian said as he tried to keep pace with Cindy.
“So strange! We would not cut him down until your team had a go at him, of course, so I got up on a ladder to inspect him. First thing that I noticed was that there was a separation of about a centimeter between his neck and body. I found a screw where the cervical spine had been sawed and another one in the neck vertebrae. A wire ran between the two screws, holding the parts together.”
“Aiyahh!” Angela explained as they came to the first gorilla. “This is bizarre!”
“Yeah, I can’t imagine why someone thought that these life-sized animals would be a good idea for a resort,” Cindy said, and then continued, “I also noticed that the rest of the body was hanging very strangely too, not like you would expect. I could not undress him until you are done with your inspection, so I felt around. He had been cut and wired back together in seventeen places. Each part also had another wire attached to it connected to the wood beam that he was hanging from. It was like he was a puppet! A human puppet!”
“How long had he been dead?” Nigel asked.
“Based on body decomposition I would say about four days. I will be able to give you a more accurate answer once I get him to the lab.”
They walked past the abandoned resort building and came upon the hanging corpse. Scientific Evidence Officers were examining the ground below the body. Ian walked up to the officer who seemed to be in charge.
“I am Ian Hamilton from CID. Do you have anything yet?”
“Calvin Chan, Senior SEO. Walk over here, I want to show you something.” Ian followed Calvin about twenty paces to a circular clearing surrounded by low bushes. The clearing, originally envisioned as a courtyard for the resort’s customers to sit, rest, and appreciate nature, had been paved with tan and grey pavers. A giraffe peered over the bushes from the surrounding jungle, its dead, glass eyes wide with curiosity as it gazed into the plaza at the human visitors. Nature had started to reclaim the space, weeds pushing up between the pavers. Benches, which had once been painted white but were now mostly rusted, had been placed around the perimeter. “This courtyard is where he was dissected,” Calvin said, pointing to the center of the circular plaza, stained with blood.
“I wish that giraffe could talk. He was probably the only witness,” Ian said.
“No, I don’t think so. This wasn’t the work of one guy. My guess is that there were three of them. Two different brands of cigarette butts, only a few days old, were on the ground by that bench. I picture one guy doing the carving while the other two watched.”
“It also would be hard for one guy to string him up, so that makes sense, Calvin,” Ian said.
“We’ll send our report to your department within three days,” Calvin said.
When they arrived back at the corpse Nigel was almost finished with his evidence collecting. When he was done he gave Cindy a nod and her team took the body down and placed it into a body bag on a gurney. “See you, Ian,” Cindy called out to him as her assistants pushed the gurney towards the dock.
Ian walked over to Angela, who was photographing the scene. “Make sure that the technicians take the piece of wood that he was hanging from too. There are some characters carved into it.”
Angela said, “Why would the guy be displayed in such a strange way, all chopped up and then wired together, out here in the middle of nowhere? Typically, a killing this gruesome would be to send a message to someone, Mess with me and this will happen to you. How often do people come out here, though, once or twice a year? No one is here to see it. Who was the audience?”
“I am afraid that the audience was the killer himself, Angela. We are dealing with one very sick individual, a guy who took pleasure in what he did, and we need to find him before he decides to entertain himself again,” Ian said.
Nigel said, “Did you see how meticulously the wires were wrapped around the screws? How clean the cuts were? He took his time. He took pride in his work.”
“Just like us,” Angela said.
“Like us?” Nigel asked.
“Our logo, We serve with pride and care.”

 
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Monster Mash Book Blitz -Day 6

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If Wishes Were Horses… by Tim Hemlin

 
ifwisheswerehorsescoverNeil Marshall is a graduate student in the University of Houston’s creative writing program and a promising young poet. However, facing a financially and emotionally draining divorce has him worried about more than paying tuition. So to make ends meet, Neil moonlights as a chef for a high society caterer.  Just when Neil’s life seems bleakest, his oldest friend, racehorse breeder Jason Keys, is murdered. And Neil becomes the prime suspect.  To avenge his friend, clear his name, and rescue a missing championship thoroughbred, Neil infiltrates the dark underworld of horse theft and illegal breeding. Neil’s friends—his attractive writing teacher, his cooking colleagues, and a freckle-faced teenage horsewoman—offer their support. But their cheers quickly turn to gasps when Neil becomes the hunted.

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author
Tim Hemlin is a graduate of the University of New Hampshire, having studied with poets Charles Simic and Mekeel McBride.  He has published in poetry journals, anthologies, and magazines–most notably in Ellery Queen.  Currently he has six published novels, two short stories and is included in an anthology.

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By day he is an educator; however after teaching ELA for 22 years he decided to put his master’s degree to work and is now a high school counselor.  In addition, he is an avid marathoner, fly-fisherman, and outdoorsman.  He lives just outside Houston, Texas with his wife Valerie, two dogs and a cantankerous cat.

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Q&A With the Author:

If you could travel to any time in history, when would you visit?

Paris in the 1920s. I’ve always been fascinated with the ex-patriot writers and artists of that time and would love to meet Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Stein, Eliot, Picasso . . .

If you could have dinner with any of your characters, which ones would you choose? What food would you serve?

Bear, my renegade from The Wastelanders, and C. J. McDaniels from my mysteries. We would have oxtail soup and a few tall pints of Black Silence, a particularly potent dark beer brewed on the Houston Rim. Undoubtedly the beer would loosen their tongues so I could spend hours listening to these kindred spirits swap war stories–both literally and figuratively. I can already hear how C. J. would combat the political rule of the heavy-handed oligarchy called The Water Cartel, to which Bear’s response would be, “Marvelous.”

Snippet:

I bellied up to a stainless-steel table where a large tub of slaughtered wild doves was waiting. One of our clients had gone on a hunting spree earlier this fall and now wanted to serve the birds as an appetizer. But damn, Claudia must be pissed. Carving out a dove’s barely quarter-sized breast was something Mattie could’ve done. The game meat would be tasty sautéed in cilantro butter with a flambé of tequila, and served on a small toast with a touch of sun-dried tomato sauce. Dealing with them now, however, was grunt work.

After the first couple of dozen, I began to change my tune. Perhaps mindless activity was beneficial at this point. Pull skin. Slice one little breast, flip body, then slice the other. Discard carcass. And thus I bone the bird of peace.

Pull, slice, flip, slice, discard. So what did I have? Sleepless nights. Pull, slice, flip. A hothead with a missing horse that I had located. Slice, discard, pull. A tight-mouthed businessman in Chip Gunn and the enigmatic Dover Hill, whose name gave me the willies. Slice, flip, slice. A headstrong girl with adolescent worries. Discard, pull, slice. Her grandfather who knew more than he was saying, perhaps because he was afraid to say too much. Flip, slice, discard. True Grit still missing and Cecil Brenner most likely threatening all kinds of military acts against Texas, or me. Pull, slice, flip. The friendly Lieutenant Gardner unconvinced I was simply an innocent mourner. Slice, discard, pull. And a hungry prosecutor aching to carry an indictment all the way to the lethal-injection chamber in Huntsville. Slice, flip, slice. Toss in a side order of Susan and Professor Winford. Slice, slice, slice. And for dessert, a married Keely Cohen. Discard. ~ Neil Marshall

 
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