Blog Blast: Crossing the Line by Sherri Hayes

Crossing The Line 
(Daniels Brothers #3)
by Sherri Hayes
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Release Date: September 4 , 2014
Genre: Romance/Contemporary and Crime 
ISBN e-book: 978-1-61213-268-6
Available from: Amazon, Kobo, Barnes and Noble, and TWCS PH

 

~~SUMMARY~~

Detective Paul Daniels has spent four and a half years mourning the loss of his wife. He’s been doing his best to raise their daughter, Chloe, with the help of his in-laws. When they inform him right before Thanksgiving that they’re going to be moving over two hours away, Paul finds himself without anyone to watch Chloe—especially when he’s called out to a crime scene in the middle of the night. Little does he know that meeting his baby brother’s girlfriend and her sister, Megan, will change everything.

Megan Carson has taken a few wrong turns in her life, but she’s doing her best to get back on track. When she meets Chloe, the little
girl swiftly worms her way into Megan’s heart. The opportunity to help Paul out and watch his daughter appears to be a blessing in disguise. She quickly volunteers to be Chloe’s live-in nanny.
Everything is working well until the three of them head back to Ohio for Chris and Elizabeth’s wedding. Paul has a little too much to drink during the reception, and he and Megan end up sharing a heated kiss. When he wakes up the next day, he has a pounding headache but remembers nothing.
Megan, however, isn’t willing to forget. Over the past few months since she’s been playing nanny, her feelings for Paul have changed. He is everything she never knew she wanted, and now that she knows there might be something there, she’s going after what she wants—Paul.

~~PRAISE FOR CROSSING THE LINE~~

“I really loved the build up in this story and couldn’t read fast enough to find out what happens next. Will Paul let go of his guilt from the past and give a relationship with Megan a chance? Or is Paul bad for Megan and lose her because of another mistake he makes? Read this book if you want a good romance, with a side of suspense, enjoyable characters and some smokin HOT scenes.” ~Diane Williams, Goodreads


To read the full review, click here.

~~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~~

Sherri spent most of her childhood detesting English class. It was one of her least favorite subjects because she never seemed to fit into the standard mold. She wasn’t good at spelling, or following grammar rules, and outlines made her head spin. For that reason, Sherri never imagined becoming an author. At the age of thirty, all of that changed. After getting frustrated with the direction a television show was taking two of its characters, Sherri decided to try her hand at writing an alternate ending, and give the characters their happily ever after. By the time the story finished, it was one of the top ten read stories on the site, and her readers were encouraging her to write more. Seven years later, Sherri is the author of seven full-length novels, and one short story. Writing has become a creative outlet for Sherri that allows her to explore a wide range of emotions, while having fun taking her characters through all the twists and turns she can create. She is most well known for her Finding Anna Series about a young woman rescued from being a sex slave by a wealthy Dominant. Sherri’s eighth novel, Crossing The Line, is scheduled to release September 4, 2014.


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~~Behind Closed Doors $0.99 Sale and Red Zone New Price~~
~~OTHER NOVELS BY SHERRI HAYES~~
 

Giveaway & Character Interview: Sherlock from How to Get Ainsley Bishop to Fall in Love with You

Ainsley Blog Tour

Hi, readers!

I thought we’d sit on the reading rug and have a chat with a very special guest today: Sherlock Holmes. The other one. This one’s the ten year old brother of Oliver Holmes, who’s featured in the new novel, How to Get Ainsley Bishop to Fall in Love with You.

JB: Hi, Sherlock!

Sherlock Holmes: Hello. *jots something in notebook*

JB: What’s that you’re writing down?

SH: Just some initial observations. I like to keep notes to help me remember things. Thank you for having me, Ms. Brown. It’s nice to talk to someone who wants to hear from me. Everybody always wants to talk to Oliver.

 

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JB: Have your parents told you why they named you and Oliver after such famous Holmeses?

SH: Only about a million times! “We wanted you to have big names so you’d have big dreams and big goals.” My parents always say that.

JB: And your parents: what are they like?

SH: They’re pretty cool. For parents. I mean, my friend David has parents who don’t even talk to him, so that would really suck. Mine talk to us all the time. About everything. It can get annoying sometimes, but at least they pay attention.

JB: If you had a sister, what would her name be?

SH: First of all, gross. A sister would be the worst. David has an older sister and she’s forever playing dumb music and texting and leaving her shoes everywhere and yelling at him about nothing. But if I had one, I would guess my parents would find a name of a famous Holmes woman. Oliver always says Katie would be a bad choice, but I don’t know. It’s okay, I guess.

JB: I hear you’re quite the fan of the great detective Sherlock Holmes. How come?

SH: He’s only the greatest mind in history! Have you read any of the books? My friends don’t understand why I like them, but their only exposure is through the movies. You know, with Robert Downey Jr.? The movies are cool, but the Holmes in the books is even better. He sees everything and can uses logic and deductive reasoning to solve crimes that no one else can figure out!

JB: I love the books and I’ve read them all, many times. And you do some detecting yourself, right?

SH: I do. There are many crimes out there that must be solved.

JB: What spy equipment does every great detective need?

SH: First of all, a sharp brain. *taps temple* That is the most important tool. Then, keen observational skills, which is why I need this. *holds up notebook* A notebook to keep track of clues and theories.

JB: Is Oliver a cool big brother?

SH: I don’t know if cool is the word. I mean, he looks at himself in the mirror a LOT. It’s weird. He’s also a bit obsessed with muscle magazines lately. And his hair. It’s all very strange. I have a few working theories.

*thinks for a moment* However, I must say that Oliver has his moments. There are times when things are . . . tense at our house. He’ll let me hang out in his room and play Xbox. That’s nice.

JB: What do you know about teenagers, based on your detecting?

SH: 1. They smell

2. They attempt to cover up the smell with various things

3. Their voices crack

4. They make no logical sense

JB: What does Oliver think of that?

SH: I have yet to discuss my findings with Oliver. When I conclude my investigation into his recent odd behavior, I will present my theory.

JB: What have you deduced about Oliver?

SH: I try not to form deductions until I have obtained all the pertinent information in a case. I am still gathering the clues in the case of Oliver Wendell Holmes. The game, my dear Ms. Brown, is afoot.

 

Ainsley

Seventeen-year-old Oliver Wendell Holmes (Yes, his parents are just that peculiar, but his brother’s name is Sherlock, so it could have been worse) knows that he’s different. He’s quirky, awkward, and he’s okay with that. Oliver also likes making lists-meticulous procedures for achieving his goals, step-by-step. Whether it’s “How to Get an A in Chemistry” or “How to Get Accepted to MIT,” he has a process, and it’s worked for him so far. He doesn’t even care that the popular kids mock him. Oliver’s got his eye on the prize.

So when he decides it’s time to declare his feelings for Ainsley Bishop, the girl of his dreams, it’s only natural for him to make a list-a point-by-point strategy to win her heart. He knows it will take a grand gesture for her to see all he has to offer, and her approaching birthday provides the ideal opportunity for Oliver to put his plan into action.

Finding the perfect gift is a challenge Oliver meets with his usual dogged determination. He’ll need to watch her carefully for clues to pinpoint exactly what he should give her. And along the way, he might just learn that what Ainsley really needs is not quite what he expected.

Ainsley is available now!

Amazon |Barnes & Noble |iTunes |Kobo | TWCS

 

Giveaway

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T.M. Franklin T.M. Franklin started out her career writing non-fiction in a television newsroom. Graduating with a B.A. in Communications specializing in broadcast journalism and production, she worked for nine years as a major market television news producer, and garnered two regional Emmy Awards, before she resigned to be a full-time mom and part-time freelance writer. Her first published novel, MORE, was born during National Novel Writing month, a challenge to write a novel in thirty days. MORE was well-received, being selected as a finalist in the 2013 Kindle Book Review Best Indie Book Awards, as well as winning the Suspense/Thriller division of the Blogger Book Fair Reader’s Choice Awards.

In addition to MORE and its sequel, The Guardians, Franklin penned the Amazon best-selling short stories A Piece of Cake andWindow, which also won a Blogger Book Fair Reader’s Choice Award for Short Story/Fantasy. Her new YA romance, How to Get Ainsley Bishop to Fall in Love with You, is Franklin’s first love story without a paranormal or fantasy element, although she believes love is the best kind of magic.

TWELVE, the final installment in the MORE Trilogy will be released in the fall of 2014.

Connect with T.M. Franklin

Website | E-mail | Facebook | Twitter

 

Reviews

 

Towel Day Giveaway

Give Away… Why?

To celebrate Towel Day.
To honour Douglas Adams, an author supportive of derivative fiction.
To introduce a novel of a similar vein to The Hitchhikers Guide to The Galaxy (see below)

 

It’s no secret that The Writer’s Coffee Shop’s first major success was a work of derivative fiction. Whilst E.L. James’ Fifty Shades of Grey, was not the first fan fiction to be pulled, reworked and published, it certainly appears to have been the piece responsible for the often heated debate on the merits of such endeavours.

 


Douglas Adams is one of many authors who embraced derivative works as this article; “Hitchhiker’s Fan-Site Started By Douglas Adams Shows Why Authors Shouldn’t Panic Over Derivative Works” from the bring a towel dept of Case Studies by techdirt, indicates.

 

Case Studies by techdirt have explored how content creators in a variety of mediums have handled derivative works, particularly musicians, TV/film and authors (all very interesting articles). They concluded that…

“the responses are predictably varied, with some creators embracing derivatives, some abhorring them, some that draw the line on commercial use, and others that use derivatives to build even further works. The least controversial of the lot is work done by fans, of course. Few creators want to go to war with fans that love their work so much they make fan films, or write fan fiction.”

Douglas Adams not only allowed derivatives of THHGTTG, he also started the site h2g2 The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy: Earth Edition to encourage it – a phenomenal, generous and memorable way to give back to his fans. Is it any wonder that he is remembered each year world wide on towel day?

So wear a towel, take a picture of it and share the love with your online community. And if you feel like it enter the Give Away for a chance to win one of three great prizes… The Amazon Gift Card, a copy of The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy or a copy of Everybody Out of the Laundromat, I Need to Think by Phil G Glenn (see summary and cover below)

…Oh and check out the site http://www.techdirt.com they have some awesome case studies.


When the ordinary life of Virgil Blaine crosses the path of the even more ordinary Doug Coulthard, it sets off a series of extra-ordinary events. Doug Coulthard is a Filing Clerk and the President of the Unpublished People’s Poet’s Party –Political Unit (UPPPPU) where a catastrophe has just happened; two of his long time members have been published. The UPPPPU goes on a recruiting drive by distributing leaflets, one of which finds its way into Virgil Blaine’s pocket. Virgil Blaine, who is a slight poet himself, attends one of the meetings where he meets Forward Slash who offers Virgil Blaine a job. The offer comes with two things Virgil Blaine has never had; a job and a car and on a whim he accepts. The problem is, through no effort of his own, his position is suddenly elevated. Virgil Blaine says the job is ‘messing with his DNA – Deliberate Non-Achiever’ and he misses his old life and so hatches a plan to get it back…Though very ordinary, Doug Coulthard has the distinction of being only one of four hundred and thirty one Earth creatures who have been abducted by Aliens. The Aliens took Doug to the Canis Minor and back, a round trip of 3.02 parsecs. Due to the spacecraft’s immense velocity Doug was left with an annoying and sudden ‘tic’ which is to nod his head up and down rather abruptly every four minutes. And now the Aliens are back to take Doug on a ‘quite a few years since we last picked you up’ Reunion Party which turns out to be one of the worst experiences of Doug’s life….


If you would like a review copy of Everybody Out of the Laundromat, I Need to Think! by Phil G Glenn, please email marketing at the writers coffee shop dot com 


 

Interview and Tour Mega Giveaway: Debra Anastasia

Poughkeepsie App Tour

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Welcome to the Poughkeepsie Enhanced Collector’s Edition App Tour!

 

Poughkeepsie by Debra Anastasia has been a cult hit bestseller since 2011. A homeless guy counting the smiles of a kind train commuter spiraled into a novel that was nominated by the Rockstars of Romance as one of the most romantic stories ever and won 2nd place!   It was a story that deserved getting a jumbo-sized enhancement. Extra scenes out the ying yang was, of course, a huge part of the fun. Getting to spend some of those previously undiscovered first moments with Blake and Livia or the moment he proposed was worth exploring. In Debra’s wildest dreams she imagined Poughkeepsie with its own soundtrack, anchored by her favorite musicians. When blockbuster talent Ron Pope signed on with fourteen songs and then Rustic Overtones agreed as well, she knew things were going to get crazy cool.

 

After almost two full years of development, the Enhanced Poughkeepsie is ready.  Debra lost count of the hours spent, as did the developer poured into this. It was beast, and more amazing than she could have ever imagined. This app became the most exceptional reading experience Debra could devise for her readers.

 

Check out what’s in store for you:

 

Trailer Link

 

This app will be available for all kinds of devices!

 

It is available now as Enhanced Poughkeepsie for iPad

Website for Droid, iPhones, and Computers is coming soon! Visit http://www.DebraAnastasia.com

https://twitter.com/Debra_Anastasia

Debra’s Facebook Page

 

The website app (which is the same content as the iPad app) will be available this week.

 

For this tour, there is one HUGE giveaway that you totally should treat yourself to entering.

 

Poughkeepsie PicMonkey Collage App Prizes

 

Poughkeepsie BookdonationsCollage

 

 

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Rafflecopter direct link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/share-code/Y2U1YWJmZWJkNDA5ZWY5N2Y3ZWI5ZmE5ZGNkMzk4OjIz/

 

 

Summary:

 

Immerse yourself in the world of Debra Anastasia’s Poughkeepsie.
Experience this bestselling novel for the first time…again as you break all the rules about books with Omnific Publishing and Debra Anastasia. In this enhanced version of the novel, you’ll enjoy insights from the author, music by Ron Pope and other artists to set the mood, and images and video that bring the scenes to life as you read. You’ll delve deeper into the world of Poughkeepsie through nearly 50,000 words of added scenes (more love, more drama, more romance!) and informative insights into how this marvelous story and its characters came to be.

Self-contained in this app (no wifi needed after downloading):
•complete novel Poughkeepsie by Debra Anastasia
•author/director’s pop-up commentary
•music by Ron Pope, Rustic Overtones, Monoxide G, Violet Winter, Bo Heart, and Jeff Epstein and the City Line Singers
•more than 100 images to enhance the story
•videos of your favorite characters in action
•special animation
•sound effects
•interviews with the characters, author, and more
•interactive games
•trailers for the Poughkeepsie Brotherhood series
•how-to knitting instructions
•how-to instructions for making a paper rose
•recipe for the dinner Livia makes for Blake

 

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Debra’s twitter https://twitter.com/Debra_Anastasia

Debra’s Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Debra-Anastasia/429939037076457

 

Debra’s website http://www.debraanastasia.com/

 

Interview with Debra Anastasia:

I’m so glad to have Debra here today! She’s a friend to everyone she meets. And what a talented storyteller! The ground breaking, Enhanced Poughkeepsie app is an experience you don’t want to miss. Now let’s talk to Debra about the Poughkeepsie stories.

I love the covers of the Poughkeepsie books. How did you come up with them and how were they executed?

It was a team effort. With Omnific, they sort of ask for a general feeling from the author and then we work together. Micha Stone (the lead designer) and I have very similar tastes, so the process is pretty fast for us. Now that we have the hands set as the tone for the Poughkeepsie Brotherhood, it’s fairly easy to knock them out.

 

Animated Cover eebpough

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This seems like a series that would require a lot of research into organized crime. How did you tackle it?

Google is a beautiful thing. I get to research anything! I’ve been known to tap my husband and his friends for suggestions on various guns and things too. And you’d be surprised how much a PTA board and the mafia have in common.

 

LOL! Not many surprises there! The subject matter of these books is gritty but fascinating. What made you want to write about these characters?

Thank you! It’s interesting, once they develop they sort of tell me how they want to be portrayed. Like I’ll plan for Beckett to do one thing, then he waltzes into the scene and changes everything. I think I’m driven to see what’s next for each of them.

 

I love it that Trish changed all Ryan’s phone contacts to Fifty Shades of Grey names!!! How brilliant. I laughed my ass off. But, wow, is she vindictive. It amazes me that people spend that much effort on being spiteful. Did you google ‘things people do to get revenge after break-ups’? I always thought sending bouquets of dung was kind of fascinating. Such people! *shakes head*

Sounds like you are coming up with a good idea there! I loved writing Trish. I actually changed my son’s phone’s contacts to Dr. Who characters a few weeks ago. He’s left them that way too! I pretty much turned any fun-loving pranks I could think of and mixed them in with a few mean ones and Trish was born.

 

In Return to Poughkeepsie, Father Callahan tells Kyle, “God does give us more than we can handle.” How important is that message to the overall series arc?

I think it is more of a life lesson. When I hear of things happening to people, I think we do get more than we deserve. We handle what we have to, but nice people deserve smooth lives.

Readers? This was my first reaction to this amazing app:

Capture Debra Poughkeepsie app FB chat

 

 

Under These Restless Skies Tour: Interview with King Henry VIII

Under These Restless Skies By 

Lissa Bryan 


Available from AmazonKoboBarnes and Noble, and TWCS

Summary: 
 
Will Somers has always thought himself unlovable. When he encounters a creature of myth and magic, he seizes the chance to finally have a wife and family of his own. Emma is a selkie—one of the immortal fae-folk of the sea—bound to Will by the magic of her kind, and eager to learn about life on land. She has to learn to adapt quickly to human customs, because Will is headed for the court of Henry VIII, to serve as the king’s fool. It’s a glittering, dangerous world, where a careless word can lead to the scaffold and the smallest of gestures is loaded with political implications. Anne Boleyn is charmed by Emma’s naïveté and soothing selkie magic and wants Emma for her own fool. Can Will protect his newfound love from the dangers that lurk in every shadow? Circa regna tonat: around the throne, the thunder rolls.

Author Bio:


Lissa Bryan is an astronaut, renowned Kabuki actress, Olympic pole vault gold medallist, Iron Chef champion, and scientist, who recently discovered the cure for athlete’s foot . . . though only in her head. Real life isn’t so interesting, which is why she spends most of her time writing.


 

 

 

 

Interview with His Majesty, King Henry VIII:

Ah, noble readers, today we are graced with the presence of His Majesty, King Henry VIII.

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Good day, Your Majesty. How fare you?

Well as always, Lady Brown. Those of us chosen by God are rich in His blessings.

I understand you have recently received the gift of a fool named Will Somers. What is he like?

He’s an odd one, that Will Somers, and I speak not of his crooked back. He spends his free time in the company of that wife of his, and does not seek the company of other ladies, if you understand my meaning. Material wealth also seems to mean little to him. He gives away what coin he has— and not in bribes or gifts to seek advancement, but to the poor. Did you hear how he tricked Cranmer out of one hundred pounds? And what did he do with it? He went straight out of the house and distributed it to the poor at the gates of the archbishop’s palace.

I cannot understand it. Any man can be bought, but I have yet to find his price.

Are Will and Patch very different?

Patch is a “natural,” my lady. Surely you know the difference? His wits are addled. Cardinal Wolsey gave him to me as a gift before Wolsey’s … unpleasant situation occurred. Wolsey valued the fool highly, for whatever reason… Methinks Wolsey used to have him sing. But I have singers enough. Patch is far more amusing when the court is teasing him. ‘Tis almost as amusing as a bear baiting to watch him become befuddled. But Emma has spoiled that of late, marching in whenever she sees Patch upset and putting a stop to it. No matter. There are always other entertainments.

Will is an “artificial” fool, one who tells jokes and the like to entertain the court. His wit is keen, and he has a way of putting things into perspective for me that makes my troubles seem lesser. And so I indulge his fancies, such as setting someone free from prison or buying a cloak for a beggar.

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Will is married, is he not? What manner of woman marries a fool?

As to why such a woman would end up as the wife of a fool, I can only conclude the girl’s father must have been deeply in debt, and sold her hand in marriage to Will. For a time, I thought Emma was half-addled herself, because she seemed to know naught of court life, or the way a woman should behave. Certainly, Emma’s father put little effort into raising her properly, because she does not know to drop her gaze in the presence of a man, or defer to him. Her manner is as bold as that of a man, and seems to feel herself equal to her husband. Will is so besotted, he seems content to allow her to wander about in that delusion.

Nor has she any notion of the natural order of the world. Just the other day, I espied her in conversation with one of the charwomen. I tried to explain to Will that it is unseemly for a servant of the queen to be seen in the company of such a lowly creature, but he merely shrugged and said she is kind to all. Bah, what can you expect from a fool?detail454

 

Is Emma Somers fair?

Long have I puzzled over this. She is not the most beautiful woman of my court, nor is she the most blessed by grace, or artful in manners. Yet there is something about her that draws my eye…

Your Majesty allows Will to call you ‘Uncle Hal’. Is it customary to grant servants such favours?

Fools are different, Lady Brown. They are somewhat between a relative and a pet. Formality cannot be expected from most of them, especially the witless, like Patch, and so they are excused from it.

Having lost most of my family, ‘tis pleasant to hear an endearment again. If only I could be so close to my own son, Henry FitzRoy, but the boy is sickly and cannot stay long at court. And my daughter … Well, Will says she may get her stubbornness from her father.

Court gossip has it that Will Somers promised Your Majesty that he would always tell you the truth. Is this true? Was his promise amusing?

Verily, methinks that man doesn’t know how to lie. And what is a promise to a fool, anyway? No more than a promise to a woman.

Does Your Majesty consider Will more than a servant?

I suppose he is ‘family’ of a sort, which is why I had him included in several of my portraits. I have given him a chamber of his own, but if he were unmarried, he would sleep with the hounds on the floor by the fire, as Patch does.

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It is just past the day of St. Valentine. What thinks the king of Cupid and his arrows?

I have been struck by the dart of love many times. Why, only recently, I noticed a fair maiden of the court, and it seems God’s will is leading me toward her…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 






Giveaway:

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Connect with Lissa Bryan on: 

Other novels by Lissa Bryan

 
                                                  Ghostwriter                The End of all Things
Short stories by Lissa Bryan

 

                                             Tales From The End   The Golden Arrow and The Butterfly

Coming soon The Land of the Shadow 

 

 
 
 
 
 

Return to Poughkeepsie: Blog Tour, Review & Giveaway

Return to Poughkeepsie blog tour banner
Summary:

Beckett Taylor is a murderer. His calling, his craft are destruction and intimidation—whether he wants it that way now or not. He left Poughkeepsie to keep his brothers safe, to keep Eve safe. Set up with happy lives to live, they’re better off without him, right?

But all his willpower crumbles when he hears his brother Blake’s frantic voice on the phone. An unknown enemy has moved in on his old territory, and Livia’s been taken. In an instant, Beckett knows it will take an attack only he and Eve can execute to bring her back. All his self-imposed embargoes are torn to shreds, perhaps along with the new man he’s struggled to become.

“Brother, call Eve. I’ll be there soon.”

In this emotional and action-packed sequel to Poughkeepsie, Debra Anastasia conjures a tale of love at its most raw and ragged. With Beckett and Eve, how could we expect anything less? But even when it’s messy, not magical, true love perseveres. Real love finds a way—for better or for worse until death does part.
Return to Poughkeepsie cover large
Bio:

Debra Anastasia Author2013_edited-1Debra Anastasia is busy, just like every other mom. There’s dinner, the dogs, the two kids, the two kids, and her ongoing battle with…ahem… digestive issues, which combined with her adolescent boy sense of humor makes for colorful and sometimes cringe-worthy social media updates. Her first love and crowning achievement is her thriving career as the weirdest mom on the block.

Her writing started a decent handful of years ago when–along with the animals and humans in her house–the voices of characters started whispering stories in Debra’s ear. Insomnia was the gateway to plots that wouldn’t give up, wouldn’t let go. Now they stalk her everywhere. Halfway through making lunches, a twist takes hold and–fingers full of peanut butter–she finds somewhere, anywhere to write it down.

She’s eternally grateful to Omnific Publishing, which has now published four of her books: two in the Seraphim Series and two in the Poughkeepsie Brotherhood Series, as well as her novella, Late Night with Andres. That one is special because 100% of the proceeds go to breast cancer research. (So go get it right now, please!) She also very much appreciates her open-minded readers, who embrace everything she has to offer, with a focus on anti-heroes and bathroom humor.

Debra lives in Maryland with her family. You can find her at DebraAnastasia.com and on Twitter @Debra_Anastasia. But be prepared.

My Review:

More than a year ago, it came out that Debra Anastasia was writing a sequel to Poughkeepsie. I put the tentative release date on my calendar and waited. And waited. And now, I have my own site and the privilege of reviewing this book.

Yes, I’ve been a fan for a long time. Don’t ask me how long, because I don’t remember. It goes back to the days when a cardboard piano was making a world tour.

Blake's cardboard piano

 

So, this is the second book in the series, and it’s not for the faint of heart. This world is gritty and stark, black, white, blood red and murky gray. There are three brothers who grew up in foster care. Beckett (the lead male in this book) is the leader and provider. He’ll do anything –even go outside the law- to protect the people he loves and ensure that they have everything they need to live successful, safe lives. Blake found his solace in music with Livia, and Cole found his in religious faith and the love of a girl named Kyle. But Beckett has no personal comforts; he’s a Mafioso, a murderer, with his fingers in a dozen illicit pies. And –sad day- he’s in love with a lady assassin who’s not quite sure whether she’d rather love him or kill him.

First, I adore the cover. It’s striking. Just thought I’d get that out of the way!

This book is gripping. The second I got my hands on the ARC, I had to start reading. I stayed up half the night, finished it, set it down, went to bed and when I got up the next day, I picked it up and read it again. The characters are all beautifully developed and the storyline is first rate. If I ever get to sit Debra down and pick her brain (and I will!), I’ll ask her how she researched it. This is a tough universe and obviously, quite foreign to my experience. For one thing, Beckett and Eve can be simultaneously tender and brutal to each other.

“These violent delights have violent ends
 And in their triumph die, like fire and powder,
 Which as they kiss consume.” (Romeo and Juliet Act 2, Scene 6)

As Father Callahan tells Kyle, God does give us more than we can handle. Life is full of trials and how we respond to those trials affects their outcome. That’s actually a comfort, because we all know that nobody’s life is easy. That’s especially true of the characters in this book. They all have difficult circumstances to endure.

Other supporting characters are fascinating. Ryan, for instance.  He’s a straight-shooting cop who’s unlucky in love. When his ex, Trish, changed all his phone contacts to highly apropos names from Fifty Shades of Gray, I did cackle. But, wow, is she vindictive. It amazes me that someone could spend that much effort on spite.

It’s good to see Mouse’s memory kept alive in this story. I like it that Livie uses the afghan that he knitted. I LOVE it that Beckett prays to Mouse (calling him his personal saint). I truly liked Mouse and Beckett’s affection and loyalty to him is pleasing.

Beckett and Eve are no fairy tale lovers. The closest comparable couple I can think of is Mr. and Mrs. Smith. Some couples love each other and yet get so frustrated that they might fantasize about beating each others’ head against the wall. Beckett and Eve? Well, they might actually do it. Their dynamic is appalling, and yet their love is so real it leaves an aftertaste.

Five stars.

 

 

Sylvain Reynard Shares His New Projects

Gabriel's Redemption cover smallThe following is an announcement from Sylvain Reynard. The third novel in his series, Gabriel’s Redemption, is now available for pre-order (*squee*) and I’ll be kicking off the blog tour with a review (on my site) on December 3rd, Release Day. Without further ado:

Dear Everyone,

 

Back in September, I wrote a post in which I mentioned my next novel. I’m pleased to be able to give you more information now.

 

My next novel is the first in a new series, and it will be entitled The Raven.  With this novel, I’m asking you to pack your bags and travel with me to the city of Florence. The Gabriel Series showed you the city during the day.  This time, I’ll show you Florence’s underworld, which is ruled by creatures of the night …

 

Here’s the formal announcement:

 

From the New York Times bestselling author of the Gabriel Series comes a dark, sensual tale of romance in a city shrouded in mystery…

 

 

Raven Wood spends her days at Florence’s Uffizi Gallery restoring fine works of Renaissance art.  But an innocent walk home after an evening with friends changes her life forever. When she intervenes in the senseless beating of a homeless man, his attackers turn on her, dragging her into an alley.  Raven is only semi-conscious when their assault is interrupted by a cacophony of growls followed by her attacker’s screams.  Mercifully, she blacks out, but not before catching a glimpse of a shadowy figure who whispers to her …

 

Cassita vulneratus.

 

When Raven awakes, she is inexplicably changed.  She returns to the Uffizi, but no one recognizes her and more disturbingly, she discovers that she’s been absent an entire week.  With no recollection of the events leading up to her disappearance, Raven also learns that her absence coincides with one of the largest robberies in Uffizi history – the theft of a set of priceless Botticelli illustrations. When the baffled police force identifies her as its prime suspect, Raven is desperate to clear her name. She seeks out one of Florence’s wealthiest and elusive men in an attempt to uncover the truth about her disappearance.   Their encounter leads Raven to a dark underworld whose inhabitants kill to keep their secrets …

 

As I mentioned in my September post, readers of Gabriel’s Redemption will be able to read an excerpt from The Raven at the end of both the paperback and e-book editions.

 

But what I didn’t mention was that one of the characters of The Raven appears in Gabriel’s Redemption.  Can you identify him or her? I welcome your guesses in the comments below and on social media.

 

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that there’s a connection between The Gabriel Series and my new series – a connection that is more than simply me, or the city of Florence, or the Uffizi Gallery. If you’ve read the cover copy above carefully, probably you’re beginning to guess the answer. But I’ll be explicit and state that we won’t be saying goodbye to the Professor and Julianne at the end of Gabriel’s Redemption. Look for them to have cameo appearances in The Raven as well …

 

While I don’t have a release date for The Raven yet, I hope to have one soon. This novel marks my transition from a contemporary love story to a paranormal one. I hope you’ll join me on this journey and that if you have friends and family who enjoy paranormal novels, you’ll help me share the news with them.

 

As we approach the December 3rd release date of Gabriel’s Redemption in North America, my American publisher has listed a giveaway of the novel on Goodreads.  US entrants can enter the contest  here.

 

And if you’d like to read a new excerpt from Gabriel’s Redemption and enter another contest, you can do so here at Romance Times.

 

Finally, I want to wish everyone who is celebrating Thanksgiving this week a very happy holiday. I have much to be thankful for and in particular, I’m thankful for you, my readers.

 

All the best and thank you for your continued support,

SR

 

 

Where We Fell: Release Day & Giveaway

Amber L. Johnson’s WHERE WE FELL is finally available.

You can now get your e-book copy of Amber L. Johnson’s debut New Adult novella, WHERE WE FELL.

Early praise for WHERE WE FELL:

a well written, emotionally uplifting, and honest story                                        – Stephanie on Goodreads

“Amber L. Johnson is one of the brightest new authors on the horizon.”              – Author Sydney Logan
“It may be short story, but definitely a powerful one.”  – Lucia @ Reading is My Breathing

 

Hannah Where We Fell quote

“Wouldn’t it freak you out if I took my hair off right this second and was like, ‘Oh my god, Oliver, I had cancer too!”

“Don’t lie.  That’s a shitty thing to lie about.”

“Is it?”

I shrug, trying to control my emotions.  “It would explain why you changed your hair, I guess.”

She straightens her spine.  “I guess it would.  Or maybe it makes sense that my mom had cancer.  And lost her hair.  So I dyed my hair and cut about sixteen inches off to donate to her for a wig.  That might make sense, too.”
Hannah Hartwell is weird.  And she’s awkward.  But at this exact moment she is not a liar.
“I might not know what you’re going through first hand, okay? But I know what it’s like to see it from the sidelines.  My mom didn’t even tell me that she was going in for testing.  Didn’t tell me she got a diagnosis.  She just called me on a Wednesday and said she was going in for surgery on Friday, and could I please make sure to pay my phone bill on time this month.  It was like, how did she just go to these appointments without telling anyone?  So blase.  Like you.  It baffles me.”
I’m silent as she talks because I have nothing to say.
“It’s kinda ironic that the woman who leaves an oncologist because he’s ‘married to his job’ ends up getting the one thing he could potentially help her with.”
The room is so quiet that I can hear the music from outside filtering into the house between the window panes and cracks under the doors.  Our food is going to go cold, which bothers me a little, even though I’m no longer hungry.  She did spend a long time cooking it, after all.

Instead of saying anything about her confession, I pick up the ear of corn and start eating.

“This is good,” I say.  And I mean it.

She forces a tight smile and picks at her own plate.

“It’s not ‘cure my cancer’ good.  But it’s good.”

This time, it’s a spoon that she throws at my head.

 

You can get WHERE WE FELL on Amazon and Createspace

Important Links:

Amber on Goodreads

Book on Goodreads

Amber on Twitter

Author Page on Facebook

Amber’s Blog

Where We Fell Playlist

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Cover Reveal & Review: Where We Fell, by Amber L. Johnson

Where We Fell is the debut novella by Amber L. Johnson. Keep reading to learn more about Amber and her upcoming New Adult release. Also, be sure to enter the giveaway for your chance to win an ebook copy, iTunes gift card, and a handmade cancer awareness bookmark!

Summary:
Oliver Bishop is having a seriously bad day. With one diagnosis, his life suddenly has an expiration date. Confused about the numbness he has to the idea of it, he unwittingly puts himself directly in the sights of a girl that just may give him a reason to fight – and to live. 

Genre: New Adult
Word Count: 25,000 words

Available October 28 on Amazon Kindle
Amber is a full-time mom, full-time wife, is employed full time, and writes when she can. She believes in Happily Ever Afters that occur every day – despite the obstacles that real life serves up on a regular basis. Or perhaps they’re sweeter simply because of them.  She always has 2 rubber bands on her wrist, a song in her head, and too much creamer in her coffee cup that reads ‘Cocoa’ – because she’s a rebel. If she’s not at her desk, with her boys, or behind the computer, she’s supporting live music with her arms raised above her head and eyes closed, waiting for the drop. 

o~o~O~o~o

My Review: Where We Fell, by Amber L. Johnson

I’ve been annoying Amber L. Johnson for some years by urging her to get published. I know she heard that from an awful lot of hobby fiction readers. And finally, here’s her debut!

Oliver Bishop is about to graduate high school when he gets terrible news: he has lymphoma. As all his peers prepare to enjoy their last summer before college, he’ll be commencing treatment. He’s not really able to bring himself to hope; it’s much easier not to think about the future.

Enter Hannah, a cheeky young lady who refuses to let him give up on life. She is an awesome friend, caring for him during bad moments, making him and his parents laugh, and generally encouraging Oliver to remember he’s still the same person inside, not diminished by a disease.

This story made me curious about lymphoma and its treatment, prognosis, etc. Plus, the side effects it causes. Oliver’s cancer was caught quite early and the story spans about six months. But this isn’t a story about cancer. It’s a love story.

petorachan/deviantart

petorachan/deviantart

Throughout the novella, Oliver never stops being himself. I like that.

There are some interesting male characters in this story. I loved how affectionate Oliver’s dad was. You don’t see that a lot in fiction and I appreciated it.

The dad of Oliver’s best friend, Terrence, is a big contrast. He’s a minister, and when Oliver falls particularly sick, he arrives and starts praying over him. It struck me as a negative, unwelcome experience. I’ve been in situations where ministers prayed with our family, and the tone was much more upbeat and encouraging. Mind you, the prayers came at the ill person’s request. It must have felt like a wake-up, you’re dying moment for Oliver, especially with Terrence acting solemn. Made me shiver.

Where We Fell is an uplifting story that contains a couple of moments like that, that absolutely killed me. Amber has always known how to tug at heartstrings and she doesn’t need to write a lot of words to get her readers attached. Her fans will be pleased. Loved this novella, as I knew I would. Five stars.

 

Congratulations Sydney Logan on the First Anniversary of Lessons Learned

September 6 marks the one year anniversary of the release of Sydney Logan’s debut novel, Lessons Learned. To celebrate, Sydney is offering a fantastic giveaway! The Blurb:A young girl needs to spread her wings, but a young woman needs roots.

English teacher Sarah Bray never thought she’d return to Sycamore Falls, but a traumatic event at her inner-city school leaves her desperate for the sanctuary of home. By returning to her roots, an older and wiser Sarah hopes to deal with the demons of her present and confront the ghosts of her past.
She discovers a kindred spirit in Lucas Miller, a teacher from New York with demons of his own. As the newest faculty members at Sycamore High School, they quickly become friends – bonding through Lucas’s culture shock and their mutual desire to build new lives. When they open their wounded hearts to each other, their friendship effortlessly evolves into romance.

Their love is put to the test when Matt, the quarterback of the football team, shares his deepest secret with Sarah. When the conservative community finds out, Sarah and Lucas – along with the town of Sycamore Falls – are schooled in the lessons of acceptance, tolerance, and love.

Praise for Lessons Learned

“Lessons Learned is a book that isn’t easily forgotten. I urge you to give it a read. You won’t regret it. Also, did I mention it starts with a bang? Talk about the best prologue ever. -JM Darhower, author of Sempre
“I haven’t read a book in a long time that I can compare to my favorite author Nicholas Sparks. THIS book is that book.” – Becky, Book Blogger

 

To thank her readers for an amazing year, Sydney is celebrating with a giveaway! You can win a signed copy of Lessons Learned and a $25 Amazon or iTunes gift card! The Rafflecopter is below. 

Good luck! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, iTunes, or Blogger. We hereby release all names listed of any liability. Winner(s) will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. Let me know if you have any questions or issues by contacting me: @SydneyALogan. – Good Luck!