Sunday, March 31, 2013

Guest Post - Helga: Out of Hedgelands by Rick Johnson

Why I Write Fantasy for Young People
by Rick Johnson

One of the attractions of writing fantasy for children is that it forces us to experiment with “beyond the box” thinking. We cannot make easy sense of a fantasy story if we cling to our usual common-sense understanding of reality. Fantasy requires us to imagine how the impossible could possibly be true. I believe that this effort at “sense-making,” which is at the heart of enjoying a good fantasy story, is one of the simple ways we “play with reality” and, thereby, encourage our minds to remain supple.

Readers sometimes ask me, “How could a cow possibly use a tool?” or “How could animals of such different sizes and lifestyles interact?” Those questions really do not have single answers. The answers lie in each reader’s own effort at sense-making in a situation that goes counter to basic expectations about what “ought” to be. Our sense-making efforts may be quite conscious—spending considerable time in thoughtful reflection as we try to imagine the ways a cow could use a tool. We may also simply ignore the incongruity and move on. At times, the incongruity may continue to play at the back of our minds for a long while, before we at last surprise ourselves with an answer that satisfies our curiosity, at least for the moment.

How many once-certain “impossibilities” are now so commonplace as to have entered our “common sense” understanding of reality! At some point, supple minds played wildly with what was essentially fantasy, and used creative efforts at sense-making to redefine what was possible. This is the power of imaginative sense-making. We discourage this power, or bind it hand-to-foot in the closed world of prejudices and iron-clad assumptions, at our own peril.

A natural relative of fantasy, and close collaborator, is the sense of humor and need to play that are part of human nature. Humor often playfully sets up situations that strike us as absurd or unexpected. In this way, humor, like fantasy, encourages flexibility of mind. As we set up situations that are incongruous in light of the “givens” in our experience, we both laugh and have the opportunity to see things in fresh perspective.

Essentially, humor is a matter of how we look, and re-look, at things we normally take for granted. When something we “know” is shown from an absurd angle, we find it funny. In my own writing, I use humor to poke holes in the expectations that “keep things in their place.”

All of the problems that haunt us today were created by people with a passionate desire to live in the world as they know it ought be. In such a world, some laughter and fantasy may help us be a little less certain about what we know and want others to think. Simply put, Wood Cows think differently. For me, it takes more of a leap of faith to believe that our current society of “boxes” is healthy and serves us well, than to believe that cows can think and talk. That is why I write.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Fantasy / Middle Grade

Rating – PG

More details about the author & the book

Connect with Rick Johnson on Facebook & Twitter


Friday, March 29, 2013

The Divine Tempest Blog Tour

A Scholar's Journey The Divine TempestA Scholar's Journey: The Divine Tempest

A Scholar’s Journey: The Divine Tempest is a no-holds-barred fantasy brawl. It begins when the God of Justice and Retribution opens The Abyss and unleashes a vengeful demon upon the mortal realm of Therra.

Now it is up to scholar Penndarius Greyson and his tormented protector, martial artist Soren Luna Mortalitas, to stop a crisis that would send shockwaves through the very fabric of creation. In addition, Penndarius is waging an internal battle with a disembodied presence attempting to possess his mind. The two heroes must avoid death or capture, but there is a catch: They have only one day to solve a riddle older than history before a dark host of unstoppable demons is released into the world.

The Divine Tempest includes warring factions, betrayal and redemption, and of course, Herrick Erickson-Brigl's trademark: epic fight scenes. This is the lean, hard-hitting first installment in a series that follows Penndarius’s growth as the avatar of the God of Creation and Soren’s reclamation of his lethal family’s humanity.

Purchase A Scholar's Journey: The Divine Tempest on Amazon.

About Herrick C. Erickson-BriglHerrick C. Erickson-Brigl

Herrick Erickson-Brigl has been reading fantasy since he first learned to read and writing it nearly as long. While in college, Herrick's passion for writing culminated in his first novel, entitled *A Scholar’s Journey: The Divine Tempest*. He is currently completing his second book in that series.

Follow the Author:
Website | Twitter

Kickstarter Campaign

Herrick is also kickstarting the editing for his second book "A War of Lies"

A War of Lies

View Herrick's Kickstarter Page here!

The author is giving away a Kindle, a $20 Amazon GC, and an ebook. Fill out the form below
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Cover Reveal: Made to Forget by Samantha LaFantansie & giveaway

MADE TO FORGET by Samantha LaFantasie

There’s something that lies within my memory. Hidden in the dark. Something that can kill me and those that I love. But I was in an accident, covered in mystery and deception. And my memory…was lost. There are those who want me to remember. I don’t trust them. And those I do trust…are fighting for me to forget.

Elsabetha Ellery wants to get her memory back, even if it kills her.

After waking up in a hospital with no memory, Elsabetha quickly learns those who claim to be her friend are anything but. And those who are her true friends keep themselves unseen.

Stuck with piecing together her broken memories alone, Elsa struggles with having faith in those she trusts and heeding the warnings of the dangers in recovering her memory. Ignoring them, she faces heavy consequences. Ones she doesn’t see until it’s too late, and a life is lost.

If you'd like to be updated on the release of MADE TO FORGET -- sign up HERE.

A Kansas native, Samantha spends her free time with her husband and three kids. Writing has always been a passion of hers but she only took up writing seriously a few years ago. Among her writing credentials, she’s a board member of the Kansas Writer’s Association and has founded her own critique group lovingly named The Fighting Hamsters.

You can find her presence on...
Facebook † Twitter † WebsiteGoodReads

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Product Review - Perfect Pancake Pan

I recently ordered the Perfect Pancake Pan and used it for the first time last night and it was so fun and easy to use! It fixes perfect sized pancakes and even eggs every time! I found out very quickly it works best to keep the lid open until your ready to flip or else your cakes get soggy. It was fun sitting and watching the pancakes rise and you instantly knew when it was time to flip because they would start kinda pulling away from the edges. I broke one egg into each of the four wells and you want them to turn all white before you try to flip or they wont turn out. You may have to practice with the eggs a time or two but they really do come out nice and round once you get your timing down pat just the perfect size to put on a good old sausage egg and cheese biscuit! Yummmo! I can't wait to fix something else or another flavor pancake in it!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Title: Skeleton Key Guild by M.J. Fletcher Cover Reveal & Giveaway!

Release: May 2013

Genre: Young Adult, Urban Fantasy, Steampunk, Paranormal

Her parents dead, her sister missing, and those she loves branded traitors to the Old Kind... Chloe Masters
is on the run.

To fulfill a parent’s dying wish she will do anything to save the sister she has never met. Can she learn the
secrets of the Artifacts before it’s too late? Surrounded by her friends; Slade, Edgar, Jess, Val and the
man she loves James Nightshade, Chloe has never had so much to live for... but will her enemies let her?

Reviews about The Doorknob Society

I am SO GLAD that I said I’d review the 
book!! It had me interested from the first 
chapter, and HOOKED shortly after that!” 

Let me start by saying that I'm a pretty picky 
reader. I have to be captured by a story almost 
immediately in order to continue reading. Well, I 
was captured by The Doorknob Society...and I 
am hooked!” Amazon 

I couldn't put it down and read straight 
through and was so mad at myself for finishing 
BOOK!” Goodreads 

Other books in the series...

About M.J. Fletcher
MJ Fletcher is the creator of the comic book
series Adam Zero: The Last Man of Earth
published by Ronin Studios. He’s also been
published in Hope: The Hero Initiative and
Digital Webbing Presents. The Doorknob
Society series is his first book series and he’s
thrilled about it. He lives near the beach with his
wife, daughter, and dog.

The Doorknob Society Book Trailer

Win an ebook copy of the first in the series, The Doorknob Society! Open International! 

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Cover Reveal for Broken Gates by DT Dyllin

(P.J. Stone Gates Trilogy #2)

Expected publication:
May 24th 2013
by Dragonfairy Press 
***Genre - New Adult Paranormal Romance

P.J. Stone is a Seer who saw too little, too late.

the past, her biggest worries were boys and school—but war has a way of
changing things. Now, the alien Riders are trying to overrun the world.
As the last of their kind, P.J. and her friends must find a way to save
humanity before there’s nothing left to save.

After choosing a
mate, P.J. hoped she'd have time to enjoy her love life. But with
everything changing so quickly and major secrets revealed, who knows
what the future will bring?--Goodreads

First book in this series

Click on the cover for book information.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Killer Work from Home Jobs by Lee Evans

Why You Need to Read This Book!
Killer Work from Home Jobs: Fortune 500 & Legitimate Work at Home Jobs – How to Make Money Online from Home! will help you accomplish your dream.

Is it your dream to spend more time with family?
Do you need to ditch that exhausting, gas-guzzling commute?
Did you always dream of working at home, but couldn’t find a legitimate job?
The idea for Killer Work from Home Jobs: Fortune 500 & Legitimate Work at Home Jobs – How to Make Money Online from Home! came from the fact that I trudged to my job, as manager of someone else’s business, wondering why I wasn’t happy. I was good at what I did, achieved the company’s goals, made good money, received accolades, but something wasn’t right, there was no sense of fulfillment.

I can’t convey the melancholy I felt, I worked hard to achieve success, earned every academic credential, had a resume to swoon over. But I wasn’t a happy camper. Was this all there was?

Once I decided to work at home, it was amazing, I jumped in the air and clicked my feet! Killer Work from Home Jobs: Fortune 500 & Legitimate Work at Home Jobs – How to Make Money Online from Home! is dedicated to all those who just can’t go back to work. In addition to the “I can’t take it any mores” of the world, this book will help many who have other compelling reasons, as well. The need to work from home runs deep. Taking the first step to working at home will make you jump for joy. Reading this book will mean you’re one step closer to your goal. Dorothy got it right, “There’s no place like home!”

How is This Book Different?
How is Killer Work from Home Jobs: Fortune 500 & Legitimate Work at Home Jobs – How to Make Money Online from Home! different from other work from home books? Instead of just providing you with links, I spent months researching each company. I wanted to provide you with the same key indicators that were critical to me. Yes, it meant investing more, taking longer to complete, but I wanted a book that gave you a sense of each company.

Is the company financially healthy?
Has the company been around for awhile?
Does the company have a global footprint?
Does the company have “money in the bank?”
My months of research answered these questions, to provide you with key company data.

My Promise to You
I verified all links in Killer Work from Home Jobs: Fortune 500 & Legitimate Work at Home Jobs – How to Make Money Online from Home! at publication. Since companies change web pages, and job needs, if any of the links don’t work, simply contact me at , and I’ll provide you with revised link info.

Also contact me regarding any jobs in the book you can’t locate. I’ll check the status of any included jobs for you.

You’re not just buying a book, you’re buying my promise that I’ll tirelessly provide you with the most up to date info at my disposal. Consider me your Work from Home Job Search Coach for the life of your purchase. I want you to make your dream come true!

Learn how to find Killer Work from Home Jobs: Fortune 500 & Legitimate Work at Home Jobs – How to Make Money Online from Home!

My Review: A Really informative book outlining the ins and outs of working from home. Lee talks about why persons choose to work from home and why alot of business have decided to hire home based individuals to cut down on overhead and other costs. I found her book interesting and as a work at home person myself understood everything she put out there. You have to be very careful when deciding to work at home because there are so many con business out there that either will "hire" you let you do the work and you never see any pay or just some that is flat out dishonest and will abuse your personal info. Lee has listed some reputable business in her book but as always you need to check and double check before making your choice of work at home business.

Buy now @ Amazon

Genre – NonFiction / Job Hunting

Rating – PG

More details about the author

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Renee Miller - In The Bones - Virtual Book Tour

Welcome to Albertsville: Population 400…and falling.

When Ryan Cassidy claims a house left to him by his estranged grandparents, he becomes tangled in the mystery of a town crushed by a deadly secret spanning generations.

The town's power core, which includes the reeve, his council members, and the local police, smother opposition with deceit, brutality and fear. They will stop at nothing to keep the horror they've committed buried.

A severe winter storm leaves Albertsville snowbound—a trap only the dead can hope to flee—and Ryan becomes a liability that must be silenced at any cost.

The answers to the town’s mystery and its salvation are hidden...In the Bones.

Renee Miller is a freelance writer living in Tweed, Ontario. Small town life is busy, but she’s managed to sandwich a book or two between the demands of housewifery and hiding from the neighbors.

Bitten by the writing bug at the tender age of nine or ten (she can't recall those years as clearly anymore) Renee has forever had a story building in her head. It wasn't until 2009 that she considered turning her passion into a serious endeavor. She has several completed novels she prefers to call "almost published" and many more awaiting their chance to be polished enough for public consumption.

Last year she co-founded On Fiction Writing, a website for writers, created by writers. IN THE BONES is her first published novel.


“I don’t have no intention of being friends with you, Mr. Cassidy. You can save that cocky little grin for
another female. One that falls for that sort of thing. I just wanted to say something, so it’s clear and we
can go on about our lives without any trouble. You understand what I’m saying, Mr. Cassidy?” She spoke
his name as though it tasted foul on her lips.

Well shit.

Audrey kept her face averted, focused on wiping her hands.

Back to the woman Ryan smiled again. “All right. I’m all ears.”

“I know your type and I don’t like it. I don’t like the problems you’re causing already. You think you can
come in here and charm everyone with your baby face and that butter-won’t-melt smile, but you’re
wrong. What was that bullshit at the meeting? Trouble, that’s what. Some of us have a brain in our head
and we remember where you come from. Your mother was a conniving little slut and your father no
better than a pedophile. White trash. That’s what you are. Melvin and Rachel used their money to gain
respect. Cassidys always did feel they were better than anyone. I don’t care if your great granddaddy
helped found this town; none of them were worth shit. Lord knows there was nothing about your
parents that’s respectful. Weren’t even married.”

Audrey choked and sputtered. Grabbing her beer she swigged down half the bottle before she set it
down. She still didn’t look at Ryan.

He raised an eyebrow at the woman, startled at the outburst. “I’m sorry you feel that way, ma’am. I’m
afraid I can’t speak for my father or my grandparents as I didn’t know them and I have to give you the
benefit of the doubt. Perhaps they were all jackasses, I don’t know. But I can speak for my mother, and
I’ll politely ask that you never let her name pass your lips again. I promise you won’t have to tolerate my
cocky smile or charm if you do.”

Website / Amazon / Smashwords

Monday, March 25, 2013

Only Love by Elle Chardou Book Blast

Only Love (The Atonement Series)

Deirdre Bardot’s life changed almost one year ago when her father was run over by a drunk driver and his crime was never solved. In the last few months, she has ended therapy, found love in the arms of Colin van der Meer, her psychiatrist’s son, and they are now engaged to be married and are expecting their first child…
A grave secret is revealed on a routine check-up and Deirdre, feeling lost and alone, flees her old life, leaving her fiancée and the city of her birth, Seattle, behind her.
She quickly settles in La Jolla, California and meets her sexy—if not mysterious—next door neighbor, Drake O’Connell. After he proves he is more than just a good looking face when tragedy strikes Deirdre, she is left with one of the most terrifying decisions of her life.
Colin is back and he isn’t ready to take “no” for an answer. Although she still loves her former fiancée, she finds herself head over heels and slowly falling in love with Drake.
Deirdre has no choice but to make a decision: she can fight for the past and the world she knew or she can fight for an unknown future that could bring her more happiness than her heart can hold.

The Atonement series consists of the following books:
Atonement (Deirdre and Colin’s story)
Only Love (Deirdre, Drake and Colin’s story; March, 2013)
Only Time (Caitlyn and Liam’s story: May, 2013)
Only You (Drew and Aubrey’s story; July, 2013)

The books do not have to be read in order nor do they have to each be read to understand the series.


Elle Chardou is a world traveler and author of several different series.
Ms. Chardou is the author of The Ties That Bind Trilogy, The Atonement Series, The Hart Family Saga, The Vamp Saga, The Supernaturals, Beginnings: Book I (The Plague) series.
She is currently working on Only Time (The Atonement Series), and Queen of the Immortals, Book Three in The Vamp Saga. Ms. Chardou has lived abroad in Stockholm (Sweden), Manchester (England), Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area and Portland. She currently resides in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Contact Information

Blog: The Beautiful People: A Writer’s Journey
Follow Elle Chardou on Twitter:
Like Elle Chardou on Facebook:
If you would like to email me, I can be reached at:

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Saturday, March 23, 2013

Review - Dead Hunger: The Flex Sheridan Chronicle by Eric A. Shelman

An epidemic that's turning humans into zombie-like creatures has swept over the eastern United States and quite possibly the world, and Flex Sheridan doesn't like it one bit. In an effort to save his younger sister, Flex re-connects with perhaps the strongest woman he knows - Gem Cardoza, his former girlfriend. Together they take his six-year-old niece Trina, the only uninfected survivor of his sister's famiy, and his infected sister Jamie, and make a run from central Florida back to his isolated home in Lula, Georgia.

I liked it alot but it really was just your average zombie apocolypse story. Nothing really new was brought to the table except for these zombies are thought to have some sort of awareness like they actually can think because of the way some of them acted but I can't really explain it further without spilling to much... I feel like the second book will be more entertaining as this first one mostly just sets the stage and puts the players on the field so to speak. I really liked the fact that the women in this story were just as tough as the men and NOT standing on the sidelines squeeling Save Me! Save Me!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Lisa Renee Jones - If I Were You - Virtual Book Tour


Back in September it was announced that New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Lisa Renee Jones sold her indie erotic series THE INSIDE OUT TRILOGY in a major deal to by Simon and Schuster.(Louise Fury, L.Perkins Agency) Since then the highly acclaimed series has sold to ten foreign countries, with more under negotiation, and now it’s been optioned by STARZ for television (Shari Smiley, Resolution.) The project is moving forward quickly, with Suzanne Todd (Alice in Wonderland) producing.

Inspired by a real journal found in a storage unit during Lisa's eight years buying and selling units, the series embraces the dark sensuality of Shades of Grey and the intrigue with storage units that is Storage Wars in one spine tingling series packed with mystery and passion. The print version of IF I WERE YOU, book 1, hits stores March 12th.

About book one: If Were You (print release March 2011)

One day I was a high school teacher on summer break, leading a relatively uneventful but happy life. Or so I told myself. Later, I’d question that, as I would question pretty much everything I knew about me, my relationships, and my desires. It all began when my neighbor thrust a key to a storage unit at me. She’d bought it to make extra money after watching some storage auction show. Now she was on her way to the airport to elope with a man she barely knew, and she needed me to clear out the unit before the lease expired.

Soon, I was standing inside a small room that held the intimate details of another woman’s life, feeling uncomfortable, as if I was invading her privacy. Why had she let these items so neatly packed, possessions that she clearly cared about deeply, be lost at an auction? Driven to find out by some unnamed force, I began to dig, to discover this woman’s life, and yes, read her journals—-dark, erotic journals that I had no business reading. Once I started, I couldn’t stop. I read on obsessively, living out fantasies through her words that I’d never dare experience on my own, compelled by the three men in her life, none of whom had names. I read onward until the last terrifying dark entry left me certain that something had happened to this woman. I had to find her and be sure she was okay.

Before long, I was taking her job for the summer at the art gallery, living her life, and she was nowhere to be found. I was becoming someone I didn’t know. I was becoming her.

The dark, passion it becomes…

Now, I am working at a prestigious gallery, where I have always dreamed of being, and I’ve been delivered to the doorstep of several men, all of which I envision as one I’ve read about in the journal. But there is one man that will call to me, that will awaken me in ways I never believed possible. That man is the ruggedly sexy artist, Chris Merit, who wants to paint me. He is rich and famous, and dark in ways I shouldn’t find intriguing, but I do. I so do. I don’t understand why his dark side appeals to me, but the attraction between us is rich with velvety promises of satisfaction. Chris is dark, and so are his desires, but I cannot turn away. He is damaged beneath his confident good looks and need for control, and in some way, I feel he needs me. I need him.

All I know for certain is that he knows me like I don’t even know me, and he says I know him. Still, I keep asking myself — do I know him? Did he know her, the journal writer, and where is she? And why doesn’t it seem to matter anymore? There is just him and me, and the burn for more.


We begin our walk, faster this time, and the cold wind has nothing on the chill between us. Conversation is non-existent, and I have no clue how to break the silence, or if I should even try. I dare a peek at his profile several times, fighting the wind blowing hair over my eyes, but he doesn’t acknowledge me. Why won’t he look at me? Several times, I open my mouth to speak but words simply won’t leave my lips.
We are almost to the gallery, and a knot has formed in my stomach at the prospect of an awkward goodbye, when he suddenly grabs me and pulls me into a small enclave of a deserted office rental. Before I can fully grasp what is happening, I am against the wall, hidden from the street and he is in front of me, enclosing me in the tiny space. I blink up into his burning stare and I think I might combust. His scent, his warmth, his hard body, is all around me, but he is not touching me. I want him to touch me.
He presses his hand to the concrete wall above my head when I want it on my body. “You don’t belong here, Sara.”
The words are unexpected, a hard punch in the chest. “What? I don’t understand.”
“This job is wrong for you.”
I shake my head. I don’t belong? Coming from Chris, an established artist, I feel inferior, rejected. “You asked me why I wasn’t following my heart. Why I wasn’t pursuing what I love. I am. That’s what I’m doing.”
“I didn’t think you’d do it in this place.”
This place. I don’t know what he’s telling me. Does he mean this gallery? This city? Has he judged me not worthy of his inner circle?
“Look, Sara.” He hesitates, and lifts his head to the sky, seeming to struggle for words before fixing me with a turbulent look. “I’m trying to protect you here. This world you’ve strayed into is filled with dark, messed up, arrogant assholes who will play with your mind and use you until there is nothing else left for you to recognize in yourself.”
“Are you one of those dark, messed up, arrogant assholes?”
He stares down at me, and I barely recognize the hard lines of his face, the glint in his eyes, as belonging to the man I’ve just had lunch with. His gaze sweeps my lips, lingers, and the swell of response and longing in me is instant, overwhelming. He reaches up and strokes his thumb over my bottom lip. Every nerve ending in my body responds and it’s all I can do not to touch him, to grab his hand, but something holds me back. I am lost in this man, in his stare, in some spellbinding, dark whirlwind of…what? Lust, desire, torment? Seconds tick eternally and so does the silence. I want to hold him, to stop whatever I sense is coming but I cannot.
“I’m worse.” He pushes off the wall, and is gone. He is gone. I am alone against the wall, aching with a fire that has nothing to do with the meal we shared. My lashes flutter, my fingers touch my lip where he touched me. He has warned me away from Mark, from the gallery, from him, and he has failed. I cannot turn away. I am here and I am going nowhere.

Author Bio:
Bestselling author Lisa Renée Jones is the author of the highly acclaimed INSIDE OUT TRILOGY which will debut internationally across many countries in 2013. Booklist says that Jones’ suspense truly sizzles with an energy similar to FBI tales with a paranormal twist by Julie Garwood or Suzanne Brockmann. Alpha, military, and paranormal romance readers will want Jones’ entire series. (About the Zodius Series — Storm that is Sterling)

In 2003, award winning author Lisa Renée Jones sold her Austin, Texas based multi-state staffing agency and has since published over thirty novels and novellas across several genres. Her staffing agency LRJ Staffing was recognized many times by The Austin Business Journal and also praised by Dallas Women Magazine. In 1998 LRJ was listed as the #7 growing women owned business in Entrepreneur Magazine.
Her debuts with Blaze and Nocturne hit Bookscan’s Top 100 list and her Blaze Hot Zone trilogy made a showing on the list in 2011 also.

Blog / Website

Kia Garriques - Innovera Yakov - Journey of a Thousand Eyes -Virtual Book Tour

Innovera Yakov is a beautiful world of crystals that turns under five moons and two brilliant suns that never set. Flitters take care of domestic chores while Starbirds and Starflies soar through the never-ending sunlight of this crystalline world. The Circle of Knowing decides their fate; the forbidden forests of the Dimmer Zone swallow trespassers. And at the very edges of Innovera Yakov there is the terrifying watery darkness of Verheer.

We meet Ayana, the healer and lonely outcast with her scarred face; Vinton, her protector (or is he her imaginary friend?); Gamma and Blu Tara, the beautiful, fiery twins who can kill with one look. These twins are important characters in the book. They could hardly be more different from each other. Krave, beloved by Gamma, hated by Blu Tara, ‘tall and upright as a polished spear with a beautiful crop of golden hair that cascaded down his back in waves’; his ‘brother’ Skylar, pure trouble with ‘muscles on his arms and legs that stood out in lumps’; Ryder with his crystal spear, forever seeking Ayana’s approval although she, refusing to believe she's worth it, can only wonder, ‘What does he see in me?’ And Ice, mysterious, dangerous, murderous with eyes like bright furnaces who feeds on Innoverans. These young Innoverans are often haunted by a forgotten past recalled only in strange dreams. They form friendships, make enemies and face constant physical and emotional challenges that test them to their limits. They have amazing powers; they can fly, they can communicate through 'thought-words', their minds can travel to other worlds. They harbour secrets.

But life is not easy on Innovera Yakov and the young Beings must live in constant fear of Blu Tara; ‘What I want, I have. What I can’t have, I destroy.’ They find that the great powers they are gifted with are nothing compared to the dangers they face. They must shelter from Solar-storms. To fall in love is dangerous. Lovers long to combine to become stronger, better Beings but it can go terribly wrong and when that happens they perish. Their survival is further threatened by Ice, who consumes Innoverans and holds both Blu Tara and Ayana in his control.

Everyone seeks a partner with whom they can ‘merge.’ This desire to ease the passage through life by joining forces with a true companion, is one of the main themes of the story. Love for Blu Tara, is a terrible thing. She tells her sister, ‘It is a curse. You will scoop out your core and abandon it just to have the Being that you love... You will steal another person’s life force if it makes it easier to get it. You will kill or die for it. And you’ll hate yourself for the weakness that it brings on you.'

They are told that they must embark on 'The Journey', this journey will be more terrifying than any of them could imagine and a strong leader must be elected from their midst. They are shocked to discover who that leader is, none more so than the chosen one herself. Many of them will perish as they make their way through the watery darkness of Verheer while battling the army of underworld warriors bent on destroying and consuming them.

Finally, diminished in strength and numbers, they reach their journey’s end only to learn the final brutal truth.

Audio Link for First Chapter / Read First Chapter Here


Blu Tara stared her sister in the face. ‘Let me tell you what you don't know about love, Gamma. It is a curse. You will scoop out your core and abandon it just to have the Being that you love. You will steal another person's life force if it makes it easier to get it. You will abandon the world you have been cradled in, betray everything and everyone you care for. You’ll give up your name for it.’
Blu Tara's voice went soft and dreamy. ‘You will gladly close your eyes and embrace the world of darkness. You will kill or die for it. And you will hate yourself for the weakness that it brings on you. So don’t talk to me about love.’
Gamma shook her head. ‘You're not making sense,’ Blu Tara. ‘You talk as if... I’m the one who should be upset about all this.’
Blu Tara lifted her hand dismissively. She pointed a hot finger at Gamma. ‘Anyway don’t forget what we are.’
'And what are we?’ Gamma glared at her..
'Different. Strange. Something to be frightened of. Two Beings that can fuse and burn everything to ashes. That's the way they all see us down there. That's what the Stardog wants from you - the powers you possess.
‘I hate them all. With their suspicious, shiny faces and their empty games. I hate that Voice which drones on and on at us in the Learning Dome as soon as we've finished resting.
Innoverans! All those perfect, pretty Beings; they remember nothing — it’s the curse of this shallow, shining world. Tell me, Gamma - what do you remember of the world we come from before your Odors Apeno dumped us here?’
Gamma swung around to face her sister fully. ‘Blu Tara! What's got into you? Where’s all that coming from? I've never heard you speak like that before. This is about Krave and I- not you!’
Krave and you - don't make me laugh. And, oh! Here’s a big difference — between you and I this time, Twin Sister. It’s the answer to your question that you brought me up here to ask.’ Blu Tara mimicked Gamma's soft and musical voice, Why do you want to kill Krave?
Here's the answer, Gamma. I will do whatever I have to do to save myself. I'm the half of you that's not like you. I don't have a weeping heart. Now I'm out of here. I need my Rest.

Kia Garriques studied writing and English literature at University and has been a published short story writer since 2009. Her first story “The Invisible Alien Watcher” was published by Micro Horror in 2009 and reprinted by Pill Hill Press in 2011. Innovera Yakov: The Journey of a Thousand Eyes – is her first novel in the ‘Worlds’ series and will be out on amazon mid February.

Twitter / Goodreads / Facebook / Tumblr / Wattpad / Pinterest / Website

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Review - Blugrass State of Mind by Kathleen Brooks

McKenna Mason, a New York City attorney with a love of all things Prada, is on the run from a group of powerful, dangerous men. McKenna turns to a teenage crush, Will Ashton, for help in starting a new life in beautiful horse country.

Really good mystery/romance. Kenna is running from being present at the scene of a big crime and hopes to start over in this small town until she can figure out what to do before the bad guys catch up to her. Romance was not on the agenda but how can she hardly resist Will's southern charm but he comes with baggage in the form of a rotten and conniving money hungry ex-wife who wont back down. Loved it and the characters were so fun especially the 3 sisters who practically run the town!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

S. Walden - Going Under - Virtual Book Tour


Brooke Wright has only two goals her senior year at Charity Run High School: stay out of trouble and learn to forgive herself for the past. Forgiveness proves elusive, and trouble finds her anyway when she discovers a secret club at school connected to the death of her best friend. She learns that swim team members participate in a “Fantasy Slut League,” scoring points for their sexual acts with unsuspecting girls.

Brooke, wracked with guilt over her friend’s death, decides to infiltrate the league by becoming one of the “unsuspecting girls,” and exact revenge on the boys who stole away her best friend. An unexpected romance complicates her plans, and her dogged pursuit of justice turns her reckless as she underestimates just how far the boys will go to keep their sex club a secret.

My Review: Holy Crap! Going Under is explosive! This is a movie in the making packed with all the day to day drama teens face and have to go thru. Very realistic and gut wrenching and has very graphic sex, language, and violence so be forewarned. I was really angry at Brooke in the beginning of the story but the more I read forgiveness came and my heart began to open up to her and cheer her on in getting justice for her friend. The other characters were even very likable and interesting especially Gretchen! She kept me in stitches. There are quite a few twists that left me second guessing myself and wondering if I really had it all figured out as much as I thought I did. A Must Read!!!

Author Bio:
S. Walden used to teach English before making the best decision of her life by becoming a full-time writer. She lives in Georgia with her very supportive husband who prefers physics textbooks over fiction and has a difficult time understanding why her characters must have personality flaws. She is wary of small children, so she has a Westie instead.
Her dreams
include raising chickens and owning and operating a beachside inn on the Gulf Coast (chickens
included). When she's not writing, she's thinking about it.

She loves her fans and loves to hear from them. Email her at and
follow her blog at where you can get up-to-date information
on her current projects.

Twitter / Facebook / Amazon / Smashwords / Createspace / Goodreads

Monday, March 18, 2013

Allie Boniface - The Promise of Paradise - Virtual Book Tour

Ashton Kirk, youngest daughter of a prestigious senator, fiancee of a hotshot attorney, and fresh Harvard graduate, is headed for a promising law career when scandal breaks apart her family. To escape, she rents an apartment in the sleepy town of Paradise, New Hampshire, where no one knows who she is.

Ashton hopes for solitude, but all bets are off when Eddie West, the town’s most eligible bachelor, moves in downstairs. Eddie likes his women and his cars shiny, sleek, and fast, and when he meets his new housemate, he wastes no time getting friendly. While he's looking for a no-strings romance, though, he gets more than he bargained for in Ash, who sees through his bravado to the pain of a loss too fresh to mention.

Can two people from different worlds find common ground, a place to fall in love and build a future? Is it possible to find your soul mate in the place you least expect?

5 Things Readers Would Be Surprised To Know About You

Thank you so much for having me here today! Welcome to my "5 Things" virtual book tour, otherwise known as "Two Weeks Getting To Know a Little More About Allie." While I'm touring with Reading Addiction Blog Tours to let readers know about my newly released book, The Promise of Paradise, I'm also chatting about my writing life (and okay, sometimes my non- writing life too). Anytime you leave a comment on one of my blog posts during these 2 weeks, you'll be entered for a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift certificate. So comment away! I'll be popping in here all day to see what you have to say :)

If you visit my website or read any of my official author bios, you'll find that in addition to writing on the side, I'm a full-time English teacher, I'm married, and I love to travel. Want to know some of the nuttier, more random facts about my life, ones you won't find anywhere else?

1. I clean up after cats every Saturday morning. For the last 5 years, I've volunteered at a local animal shelter. Each weekend I go to the "cat house," where I scoop poop, change fleece blankets, and give the kitties lots and lots of attention. In fact, last month I helped out with a massive hoarding rescue and fostered 2 very scared strays for a couple of weeks. What can I say? I'm a softy when it comes to animals (the hero in The Promise of Paradise, Eddie West, is too – he rescues a kitten who's caught in a downpour. How can you not love a guy like that??)

2. I once hiked the Alps in a 2-day rainstorm. My husband, sister, and brother-in-law and I traveled to Germany, Switzerland, and the Czech Republic one summer. While the men stayed in Munich and enjoyed the Hofbrauhaus, my sister and I decided to hike the Alps. It was beautiful. It was accessible (believe it or not, it's really tough to get lost, because the trails are well marked). And it rained the entire 2 days we were up there. Ugh. I remember lots of fog and
soggy socks and shoes. I'd love to do it again – but only if it's sunny this time!

3. I don't eat cooked fruit. I know, it's weird. But I never have. I think it's a texture thing; I love fresh fruit and could eat it all day long. But when it's warm and mushy, something about my taste buds revolts. This means I don't eat apple pie, blueberry muffins, oatmeal raisin cookies, strawberry shortcake...

4. I had a pen pal all through college. I met a guy one summer when I was nineteen who went to a college in a different state. We hit it off but never dated, and he turned out to be one of those amazing people who liked to write letters. Long ones. About observations on everyday life, the future, the past, our friendship, favorite books and movies...and for the next 5 years or so, we exchanged letters every month. They were old-fashioned, handwritten, and I loved opening my mailbox and discovering them. It truly was a treasured friendship.

5. One of my favorite places to write when I was a teenager was the local cemetery. Macabre, right? But also beautiful and peaceful and quiet – no one ever interrupted me! It was only about a quarter-mile from our house, quite small, and very old. I loved looking at the dates on the headstones, how far back they went and the names and ages of the people buried there. In summer, I would sit in the grass, notepad on my knees, and scribble poems and ideas for stories.

So there you have it! 5 quirky things about Yours Truly – and yes, all of them in some way has
affected my writing. Happy reading!

Allie Boniface is a small-town girl at heart who's traveled around the world and still finds that the magic and the mystery of small towns make them the best places to fall in love and find adventure. From the New England coast to Rocky Mountain hotels to tiny European bars, she's found more character and plot inspirations than she could ever count. Currently, she's lucky enough to live in New York's beautiful Hudson Valley with her own "Hometown Hero," a guy who can fix, build, drive, and grill anything and is the epitome of the strong and silent type.

When she isn't writing love stories, Allie is a full-time high school English teacher who gets a kick out of helping her teenagers negotiate the ups and downs of writing along with the ups and downs of life (because, really, she's still trying to do the same thing!). And while she'll continue to travel far and wide, Allie knows there's really nothing like coming back to the place where the people who have known you forever welcome you home with open arms.

Website / Blog / Twitter / Facebook / Amazon

Chief Complaint Cosmic Blast


Chief Complaint Brain TumorChief Complaint: Brain Tumor

At 57 years old, I thought I was the poster child for fifty-year old healthiness: I competed in triathlons, rode in 100 mile biking events and ate a healthy diet chock full of organic vegetables. Then I discovered that I had a brain tumor the size of my wife’s fist.

My memoir chronicles the first year I spent addressing tumor-related health issues: preparing for my first operation, discovering a dangerous skull infection, having the infected portion of my skull surgically removed, learning about my substantial vision and cognitive losses, undergoing rehab and radiation treatments, and learning to live with my “new normal.” And, as best I can tell, the phrase “new normal” is the medical community’s code words for “You’re alive, so quit bitchin’.”

As my health changed, so did my sense of humor. My humor started out superficially light-hearted prior to the first operation; transmogrified into gallows humor after several subsequent operations; and leveled out as somewhat wry-ish after radiation and rehab.

Topics I write about in the book include:
  • How not to tell everybody you have a brain tumor
  • Why it’s a lot of work to die in this country
  • Why I had difficulties in naming my tumor
  • How I negotiated bathroom visits with “Nurse Don’t-Bother-Me”
  • Why I could prove that I was the “dumbest guy in the room”
  • Why someone compared the back of my head to a diseased goat
  • How I flunked a job interview with myself
This is a book for anybody interested in memoirs about people dealing with personal crises, for patients trudging through rehab, for caretakers helping victims of serious illnesses, or for anybody looking for an unexpected chuckle from an unlikely subject.

Purchase Chief Complaint: Brain Tumor at

About John Kerastas

I've worked at a global advertising agency, at several technology start-up companies and as a free-lance writer. Currently I spend most of my time blogging, speaking and writing about brain health, brain tumors and rehab. I speak to hospital rehab groups, stroke and aphasia groups, and last summer spoke at the American Brain Tumor Association's annual "Patient and Caregiver" conference.

John KerastasMy charity and non-profit efforts includes work through the Taproot Foundation on behalf of Apna Ghar (a Chicago-based non-profit providing domestic violence services to immigrant communities). I also go on Appalachia Service project trips through my church, participate in Early Response Teams that follow first responders into disaster areas, and teach and certify Early Response Teams through the United Methodist Committee on Relief (e.g.UMCOR).

Follow John Kerastas

Website | Facebook | GoodReads


The author is giving away a $50 Amazon Gift Card.

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Jess Wygle - Evol - Virtual Book Tour

What doesn't kill you...

"I will do whatever it takes to keep us together. Nothing can keep us apart. You're mine now." She'd love him just as he loved her. She had to. She didn't have a choice.

In love and happily living the life she always dreamed of, Venna Caldwell doesn't know she is the object of a secret obsession. Until one night when she's home alone and her stalker finally acts on his fantasies, dragging her into a sadistic nightmare that she barely escapes. Running for her life, from a man who will never stop hunting her, Venna reaches out to her estranged half-brother, grasping desperately at what little hope she has left. How far will she go to keep out of the clutches of the unrelenting monster that's hungry for her?

With her ability to grab the reader by the shirt collar, Jess Wygle delivers a fast-paced and intensely psychological thriller that will make you think twice about the people around you.

10 Tips to Becoming a Better Writer

I am purely speaking from experience. I am not formally trained in writing, and I still consider myself an amateur. These are just tips/techniques I’ve used that have helped me grow as an author.
1. Write. You can’t get anywhere if you just let your ideas sit inside your head. Even if you’ve never actually put anything down on paper (or on digital ‘paper’), you have to get your feet wet.
2. Reread. Go back and take a look at what you have written. The more often you proofread, not only for grammatical and spelling errors, but for loop-holes in your story also, the sooner you’ll be able to correct a common mistake throughout the story and won’t continue to make it.
3. Read. It may seem silly to do a lot of reading while you’re writing because some may say it leads to plagiarism or stolen ideas, but it can be very inspirational and aspirational. Try reading a genre you don’t read often to get a better feel for different writing styles and elements used.
4. Have two sets of eyes. It doesn’t matter how many times you read through your own work, you’re never going to catch all of your own mistakes. It’s important to let someone else have a gander before distributing your story out. Better safe than sorry.
5. Write some more. It’s not easy to write when you’re not ‘inspired’ and it definitely reflects in your story, but the only way to get better is to keep at it. You don’t have to use what you don’t like, as long as you keep at it.
6. Take advice. We all start out as amateurs and need guidance. Take what you can get because not everyone has the opportunity to be picky.
7. Swallow your pride. Not everyone is going to like what you write and some will be more vocal about it. You can get a lot out of negative criticism if you learn to read between the lines, even if it’s painful to do so.
8. Get involved. Being a part of a community of other writers is a great way to get support. But to get support, you’ve also got to do some supporting of your own. There are a number of online communities as well as local book clubs and blogs that help first-time writers and indie authors.
9. Put yourself out there. Showing off your writing to the world can be scary as it’s a pretty intimate, personal hobby/lifestyle. You can’t be afraid. Nothing reflects better than pride in your own work. It’s yours. Own it.
10. Write. Have I mentioned you need to write…write…write…write…and write some more?

Author Bio:

Jess Wygle is a short story author and novelist. Her titles include Keep it Safe, Evol, Not Alone, Long Awaited, and Where’s My Accident. Primarily writing thrillers, she has included non-fiction and romance in her repertoire.

Jess is married to her husband, AJ and has a young son named Landon. She’s also mother to a one-year-old red fox lab. This self-proclaimed movie buff has a knack for photography. She’s currently enrolled at a local college studying education and has plans to teach English at the high school level as she works her way up the bestseller list.

Blog / Bookrix / Amazon / Kobo / Barnes and Noble / iTunes
Twitter: @jcwygle
Facebook: Jess Wygle
Instagram: jesswygle username: jesswygle

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Lindsey Fairleigh and Lindsey Pogue - After the Ending - EXTREME PROMO BLITZ

The Virus spread. Billions died. The Ending began. We may have survived the apocalypse, but the Virus changed us.

When people started getting sick, “they” thought it was just the flu. My roommate, my boyfriend,
my family…they’re all gone now. I got sick too. I should have died with them—with the rest of the world—but I didn’t. I thought witnessing the human population almost disappear off the face of the earth was the craziest thing I’d ever experience. I was so wrong. My name is Dani O’Connor, I’m twenty-six-years-old, and I survived The Ending.

The Virus changed everything. The world I knew is gone, and life is backwards. We’ve all had to start over. I’ve been stripped of my home, my dreams…all that is me. I’m someone else now—broken and changed. Other survivors’ memories and emotions haunt me. They invade my mind until I can no longer separate them from my own. I won’t let them consume me. I can’t. My name is Zoe Cartwright, I’m twenty-six-years-old, and I survived The Ending.

We’ve been inseparable for most of our lives, and now our friendship is all we have left. The aftermath of the Virus has stranded us on opposite sides of the United States. Trusting strangers, making sacrifices, killing—we’ll do anything to reach one another. Fear and pain may be unavoidable, but we’re strong…we’re survivors. But to continue surviving in this unfamil-iar world plagued by Crazies and strange new abilities, we have to adapt. We have to evolve.


Looking around apprehensively, I made my way toward the convenience store in hopes of finding a bathroom. The vacant world around me was eerily silent. All I could hear was the creaking of a giant wooden billboard being assaulted by the wind.

How long has it been since anyone was here? Through the dark windows I saw a bathroom sign that looked promising, but I couldn’t bring myself to enter. I wonder if it’s safe… As I stood outside of the store, I noticed a newspaper box still filled with papers. I leaned closer. The headline read, BILLIONS DEAD, and the paper was dated December 9, right before everything had started to shut down. I inserted a quarter and snatched out a paper. Scanning its contents, my mouth grew dry and my body stiffened.

…the H1N1/12 pandemic…
…looting and riotous outbreaks everywhere…
…end of civilization as we know it…
…survivors losing their minds…
…governments can’t control…
…the Apocalypse…

The newspaper slipped from between my fingers. Frozen in place, I was suffocated by the reality of our situation. This isn’t going away. The world ended. Thinking of the strange feelings I’d been experiencing, I once again questioned my own sanity. My thoughts were too loud to silence. My heart thudded, and I couldn’t swallow the lump in my throat. Looking out into the abandoned world around me, I realized how alone we really were. I bent down to reclaim the paper and turned on my heels to head back toward the truck, completely awestruck as the words I’d read replayed in my mind. Each was a reminder that the only world I’d ever known had ended.

Author Bios:

Lindsey Fairleigh lives her life with one foot in a book—as long as that book transports her to a magical world or bends the rules of science. Her novels, from post-apocalyptic to time travel and historical fantasy, always offer up a hearty dose of unreality, along with plenty of adventure and romance. When she’s not working on her next novel, Lindsey spends her time reading and trying out new recipes in the kitchen. She lives in the Napa Valley with her loving husband and confused cats.

Lindsey Pogue has always been a little creative. As a child she established a bug hospital on her elementary school soccer field, compiled books of collages as a teenager, and as an adult, expresses herself through writing. Her novels are inspired by her observations of the world around her—whether she’s traveling, people watching, or hiking. When not plotting her next storyline or dreaming up new, brooding characters, Lindsey’s wrapped in blankets watching her favorite action flicks or going on road trips with her own leading man.

The Ending Series / Barnes and Noble
Amazon -- (*Kindle Version will be FREE 3/15 - 3/17*)

Review/Promo - Maria's Match by Astrid Cielo

It was love at first sight...

Silvius fell head over boots in love with the fiesty Latina nurse the first time he saw her, helping keep a battered woman alive. Having lost everyone he loves to the terrible disease that nearly left their planet extinct, he thinks he has found his mate.

She was instantly attracted to the alien, and that scared her to death...

Maria shared a blissful and life-changing night with Silvius, losing her heart and gaining the baby now growing within her womb. But old hurts won't let her stay and accept that Silvius loves her. So Maria runs-- like she always does.

Little does Maria know that she has finally met her match...

Be advised: Content intended for persons age 18+. Contains violence and scenes of a sexual nature (but not at the same time!).

Review: Maria's Match was a fantastic alien/human romance and I was so excited over the "mixed" child to be born! It's the first alien/human story I had ever read where they mated and made a child and it was really excited to see how that turned out! Actually I haven't read that many stories on alien romances anyhow but am becoming quite intrigued with them and this one makes me want to go out in search of more. Very much recommend it to folks whether they have read this genre or not! I give it 3 stars or in my case 3 puppydog paws!

Author Bio:
Astrid Cielo is a Mississippi girl who enjoys a variety of things. By night, she is a nurse in her local ER, and by day, she is spilling her imagination out on paper.

Astrid began writing when she was a child her stories featuring a variety of characters (including her imaginary friends). When she was in high school she wrote her first completed story and was published twice in poetry anthologies. Gathering her courage, Astrid self-published her first book, Surrender Serenity, Salin's Salvation, Book 1 and enjoyed every minute of it.

Now she balances her time between being a nurse (which she loves) and writing down the scenes that play out in her mind. She also plays World of Warcraft (which all of her friends think is weird)!

Astrid would love to hear from you!

Astrid / Blog / Amazon / ARe / Smashwords / iBOOKSTORE / PRINT

Maria pushed the eggs and chorizo around on her plate. She was hungry, but she didn’t
want this to come back up like most mornings. She was tired of vomiting. She couldn’t even go to the doctor and get an antiemetic for it because she feared the repercussions. “Oh, hi doctor. Yes, I’m pregnant. Oh no, it’s an alien.”
She laughed at the direction of her thoughts. She had well and truly lost it.
“Mija, you need to eat the food, not play with it.”
“I know, abuela, but I don’t want to vomit again.”
“Aye, mija. Just go to the doctor.”
Maria dropped her fork, its clatter echoing the kitchen causing her abuela to jump. Her
emotions were too close to the edge lately. She didn’t have control. Not anymore. The tears fell down her cheeks and she swiped at them angrily. Before she didn’t cry at all, but now she cried about anything.
“I can’t, abuelita. I’m not sure what they will do to me. What if something is wrong with the baby? I can’t even get the pre natal care because I’m scared I’ll go to prison.”
“Well you know that you can’t do without prenatal care, especially since the father is an alien.”
“I know abuela. But how am I supposed to get that care without going to prison.”
Maria rested her head in her hands and the smell of chorizo and eggs hit her like a slap in the face. Placing a hand over her mouth, she jumped from the table and ran for the bathroom.
Silvius stepped into the kitchen and caught her by the shoulders.
“What’s wrong, Maria?”
She tried to move around him, but he wouldn’t release her. He wouldn’t let her go to the sink or trash can. Then it was too late and Maria could only look up at him in horror after she painted his shirt with her vomit. She burst into tears at the mess that covered him, sure, that he would hate her now. Wasn’t that what I was going for? The thought only made her cry harder.
Silvius removed his shirt and wiped her mouth with a clean spot before pulling her into his arms. Maria rested her tear stained cheek against his firm crimson chest.
“Are you okay?”
His whispered question only made the tears start again. He didn’t push her away. He didn’t press her for more information. He simply held her as she bathed his chest in her tears. Finally, the crying stopped and she was relieved that she could finally see his face without the sheen oftears to blur her vision. He regarded her with furrowed brows.
“I’m sorry.”
“For what?”
“For vomiting on you.”
“No worries about that. Are you okay?”
“I don’t know. I can’t quit vomiting. I was just telling...”
“Yes. I heard. You need a doctor, but you haven’t gone to one.”
“Hey! I can’t help that! I’m carrying an alien’s baby!”
He released her as though she were a hot coal, his nostrils flaring. She wished she could take it back, take her words back. She placed a hand over her stomach and rubbed soothing circles over where a baby resided. Her baby. His baby. She sighed. Sometimes she forgot that it wasn’t just her involved in this fiasco. He was here, which was more than she could say for some men.
“I’m sorry. I just don’t know what to do. I don’t know if it’s a crime. I mean they’ll never believe that I don’t know anything since I slept with you. Hell, they’ll think I’m just a whore if I didn’t do it for information.”
Maria gasped when Silvius pinned her against the counter. He grasped her hair and brought her face to his. She was awed at the anger she seen reflected in his blue eyes.
“Is that why?”
“Calm yourself, mijo.”
Maria looked to the side to see her abuela just watching with interest. Silvius had never
been anything but patient with her, but his body didn’t scream patience right now.
“Answer me, Maria!”
She flinched.
“Why what?”
“Is that why you let me make love to you? For information?”
Maria struggled to get loose from his hold, but he was stronger than she imagined. How could he think so little of her? She couldn’t take it anymore. Maria brought her knee up, kicking him in the thigh beside his groin. Sure, she could’ve been a bitch and kick him in the family jewels, but she just wanted him to release her. She hated the feeling of being held so firmly, his face merely inches from hers. It reminded her too much of the way he would kiss her, his tongue snaking into her mouth to duel with her own. He didn’t seem to feel her kick to his inner thigh, instead his grip got tighter.
He stared into her eyes and Maria squirmed under his intense scrutiny. He relinquished his almost bruising hold and held her close, his breaths coming in almost pants. What was this all about?
“The point is I need to see a doctor. I need prenatal care, Silvius, and I don’t want to
become an experiment since this is your baby, too.”
He pulled back and nodded before leaving her with her abuela. Maria collapsed in the chair.
“Are you okay, mija?”
Have you tried to get to know him, mija? I know you don’t put much faith into my visions, but I have a good feeling about you two. All you have to do is trust him.”
“I can’t Abuela. He’s leaving.”
“Do you really think he’ll leave his baby?”
Wasn’t that what scared her the most? That he would take her baby and leave her behind.

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Lee Strauss – The White Room Syndrom

Seventeen year old Zoe Vanderveen is a GAP--a genetically altered person. She lives in the security of a walled city on prime water-front property along side other equally beautiful people with extended life spans.
Her brother Liam is missing.

Noah Brody is a natural who lives on the outside. He leads protests against the GAPs and detests the widening chasm they've created between those who have and those who don't. He doesn't like girls like Zoe and he has good reason not to like her specifically.

Zoe's carefree life takes a traumatic turn. She's in trouble and it turns out that Noah, the last guy on earth she should trust, is the only one who can help her.

The White Room Syndrom by Lee Strauss

Have you ever read a story where it’s all action and dialogue but you can’t quite picture where it’s all taking place? This is what I call the White Room Syndrome. It happens when the author fails to give the reader enough setting for the scene. As a rule of thumb I try to always provide at least two or three setting details to anchor the scene.

For instance, many YA books have scenes that take place in a classroom. Because most of us already know what North American classroom is like, it’s easy to assume that we don’t need to provide setting details because we believe the reader will provide those on her own. This may be true, but it doesn’t provide for an engaging reading experience. Say we have two characters sitting together in a classroom.

There’s tension, conflict and witty dialogue between them, but beyond their shared desk it’s a white out. A few details added by the pov character will create a sense of dimension. A poster of the cross section of a man’s chest hung on the wall, heart, lungs and liver exposed, the corners curling with aged tape held up by tacks. Across the room a warm breeze blew in through open windows. Mr. Jones’s back faced us as he scribbled on the board, chalk scratching in rhythm.

Now back to action/ dialogue between characters. See how mentioning three things brings the setting alive? Of course the opposite problem to the white room syndrome is excessive descriptive passages. If I went on and on about every detail in the classroom the reader’s eyes would begin to gloss over before he even got to the action/dialogue. Here’s an example from Divergent by Veronica Roth.

Her main character has entered a room where she’ll be tested to determine what faction she’s from. Mirrors cover the inner walls of the room. I can see my reflection from all angles: the gray fabric obscuring the shape of my back, my long neck, my knobby-knuckled hands, red with a blood blush. The ceiling glows white with light. In the center of the room is a reclined chair, like a dentist, with a machine next to it. It looks like a place where terrible things happen. “Don’t worry,” the woman says, ” it doesn’t hurt.”

Ms Roth even uses this passage to describe a setting as an opportunity for us to see what her main character looks like. You can see that she picked out three things to brighten the setting—the mirrors, the ceiling and the reclined chair. In PERCEPTION, Zoe leaves her utopian city to search for the guy she spotted on a news report on TV. She has reason to believe he can help her find her brother.

There are actually six details here anchoring the setting. Noah cracked the heavy door open just wide enough for us to squeeze inside, and I was relieved that the other girls were with us now. It would’ve been insane for me to follow a strange boy into a place like this alone. Not that what I was doing right now wasn’t crazy. It took a moment for my eyes to adjust from the bright daylight to the darker room.

Shafts of light streamed through broken stained glass high above my head, and dust swirled in its rays. Most of the pews had been removed but a few were left, moved out of their straight lines into a crooked circle. A wooden cross hung from the ceiling over an altar, but any other religious relics that might have once had a home here were gone. A lone guitar was propped in the corner. Two guys were sleeping on the pews and Noah kicked one in the foot.

“We got company.”Sometimes it just takes one or two details to brighten a setting in order to the ground the reader and make for a more engaging and enjoyable read.

Eternal Life is To Die For - Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – YA SciFi / Romance / Rating – PG13