Friday, 17 July 2015

New Book Tour + Release Blitz Invite - Every Choice/giveaway





New Adult
Date Published: June 13, 2015


Red.
Red is everywhere.
Not just red, blood.
Blood is everywhere.
It is all over me.

Cassie Whitlock has relived that day countless times in her dreams for the past four years. It left more than just physical scars, it has caused her to close herself off to everyone. She no longer believes in love. Love only ends in pain.

That’s why when she meets Luca, she is surprised by the immediate and undeniable attraction between them. She doesn’t want complicated and she knows he’s about to make everything complicated. As their lives become more intertwined, it becomes harder to hide her secrets, and harder to resist him, but when she discovers he has secrets of his own, she begins to question everything. Cassie has to make a choice: hold on to the ghosts of her past or be brave enough to imagine a future.



Long Excerpt from Every Choice
When I was ready, I strode confidently across the room and, after checking that he didn’t have a drink in his hand, I tripped right in front of him. Luckily, he played the part of the gentleman well and caught me before I hit the ground, his arm under my back. I looked up at him and felt seized in his gaze again. If someone had taken a picture of this moment, it would have looked like he was dipping me in waltz. Or maybe a tango was more appropriate.
I knew I had only pretended, but my pulse raced with adrenaline as if I had actually tripped. His dark blue eyes cut into mine and I felt like they were swallowing me. I was suddenly not sure if this was a good idea, but it was too late to back out now. I did my best to smile and let out a silly laugh, as if to apologize for being so clumsy.
“Oh my gosh,” I said griping his bicep and squashing the strangled cry I wanted to let out after feeling the hard muscle. “Thank you so much. I would have completely embarrassed myself if you hadn’t caught me.”
He didn’t say anything but he righted me and made sure I was on my feet before he let go. He made like he was going to turn back to one of the girls around him and I pulled on his arm before he could. I thought I heard a quiet curse in my ear from one of his gaggle, but I’d expected it. It wasn’t like my reputation was a secret, a fact I actually prided myself on. And they had a reason to be upset, they had just lost their chance with him.
“My name is Cassie,” I said, half pulling him to me, half stepping toward him, so we were face-to-face.
When it was obvious that I was waiting for him to answer, he said gruffly, “Luca.”
I smiled wide. “Can I get you a drink, Luca? To thank you?”
He looked at me as if he were trying to decipher a riddle, but his eyes hardened and grew darker suddenly.
“You don’t even know me,” he said, his voice deep and rich.
I ignored his slight shift in demeanor which should have set off warning flags, but didn’t.
“But I think I’d like to,” I said flirtatiously.
“You think? You’re not sure?” He took a step toward me and my body physically reacted to his closeness without my permission.
I made an obvious glance at his lips to let him know what I was thinking before I returned to his eyes. “I’m sure.”
Luca took another step toward me so that there was less than a foot separating us. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw the girls that had been congregating around this living example of male perfection turn irritably and stomp away. Of course, I couldn’t process anything other than how this was easier than I’d expected. I bit my lip in a way that I knew was usually irresistible for a guy. Just as I anticipated, Luca leaned in and we would make contact in three…two…
“Come with me,” he said quietly.
He grabbed my hand and pulled me behind him as he made his way through the throng. I was disappointed with the non-kiss until I realized he was leading me up the stairs. To the bedrooms. Normally, I was the kind of girl who at least insisted on going back to his place, or mine, but seeing as how just Luca’s hand was getting me all hot and bothered, I thought that maybe sooner was better.
A tingle was forming low in my core and the inch of skin I saw as his t-shirt hitched up put me even more on edge. Even if he wasn’t as skilled in bed as I suspected he was, it wouldn’t take me long. I was practically halfway there already.
We made it to the top of the stairs and we turned down the hall until we lost all sight of the party raging downstairs. I tried to guess what room we were going to enter, wondering whose it was and how mad they’d be when they realized what it had been used for, when Luca stopped suddenly and backed me against the wall. I whimpered in shock, more turned on than perhaps I ever had been without so much as a kiss.
He gripped my shoulders, holding me in place, and I could feel the nerves along the whole front of my body clamoring the make the foot-long jump in front of me to reach his body. Luca’s hands slid slowly down my arms to my wrists. He wrapped his hands around them easily and raised them above my head, pinning them to the wall. I didn’t know what he was doing but I was more than willing to play along.
He lowered his head so that his mouth was gently grazing my ear and he whispered, “What is it you want from me, Cassie?”
I nipped at his earlobe that was within reaching distance. “I would’ve thought it was obvious.”
He moved away and I tried to follow but his hands held me tighter against the wall and I could no longer reach him. The hallway was dark, the only light spilling in from the stairs, but his eyes seemed to glow in the dimness. Two tiny beacons in the fathomless darkness that surrounded me. I couldn’t remember the last time I had wanted something so badly.
“Do you want to make love to me?” he growled.
I titled my head and observed him for a moment. His expression gave nothing away.
“You hardly seem like someone who makes love,” I replied.
“You’re right, I don’t. I fuck.”
I arched off the wall and my breasts brushed against his chest sending tremors through my body.
“What a coincidence,” I smiled. “That’s what I’m offering. No strings. Just a fun night.”
“Sweetheart, you aren’t capable of offering me that.”
My eyes narrowed at him. They had adjusted to the minimal light but saw no humor in his expression. In fact, he was a blank slate and I didn’t like that I couldn’t tell what he was thinking.
“You don’t even know me,” I said, throwing his words back at him.
“I know enough. You are confident enough to use a fake trip to gain my
attention. You’re a little arrogant in thinking that games could actually fool me. And you are sexy as hell, and I’d like nothing more than to peel you out of this dress and fuck you against this wall with your legs around me, screaming my name.”
He pushed his body flush against mine, pinning me entirely to the wall, and I felt him hard against his jeans. All my girly parts broke out into a happy dance at his declaration. I was even willing to ignore the snide comments he made before that last one because I was so needy. I tried to move to create some friction between us, but I was trapped.
“But,” he continued, “I’m not going to do that. Because while you definitely have a ‘do me’ look on your face that I’d fucking love to wipe off of it, your eyes are holding so much more back. I see a lot of unchecked emotions and I don’t do emotions. So—”
Before I could even process what he had said, his lips crashed into mine. His tongue invaded my mouth and twisted with mine, which I felt down in my toes. I wanted to grab his shaggy hair and run my fingers through it pulling him closer to me, but they were still in his grasp above my head, so I had to let my kiss do the work.
He practically melted into me, or maybe it was more appropriate to say that I melted into him. His kiss was demanding and punishing and scorched me from the inside out. He pulled back too soon and gave me a knowing smirk as he let go of me and strutted down the hall back to the party without another glance.









Samantha Rey graduated from the University of Mary Washington in Virginia with a degree in theatre and a Master’s in elementary education. While her full-time job is currently teaching third grade just outside of Washington, D.C., her love of theatre, entrancing characters, and never-ending drama has not subsided. She has always loved creating stories and the Every series is culmination of a lot of hard work and following her dreams. When she is not writing, she is reading way too much, choreographing musicals, grading papers, and spending time with her husband and their dog, Paisley. You can follow Samantha on Twitter @authorsamrey, on her website, samantharey.com, or on Facebook, facebook.com/authorsamantharey.
Twitter: @AuthorSamRey


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Monday, 29 June 2015

TO KISS A RAKE PRE-ORDER BLITZ‏/Giveaway



To Kiss A Rake
by Barbara Monajem
Series: Scandalous Kisses, #1
Genre: Regency Historical Romance
Release Date: July 29, 2015






WHEN A LADY IS ABDUCTED BY MISTAKE…



Melinda Starling doesn’t let ladylike behavior get in the way of true love. She’s secretly helping with an elopement, when she’s tossed into the waiting coach and driven away by a notorious rake.



REVENGE REALLY DOESN’T PAY.



Miles Warren, Lord Garrison, comes from a family of libertines, and he’s the worst of them all—or so society believes. When Miles helps a friend to run away with an heiress, it’s an entertaining way to revenge himself on one of the gossips who slandered him.



Except that he drives off with the wrong woman…and as if that wasn’t scandalous enough, he can’t resist stealing a kiss.







Setup: Melinda Starling was abducted by mistake and is now being returned home by her abductor. She falls asleep in the carriage.



     Melinda dreamed she was safe in the arms of a truly wonderful man. He adored her with a passion that knew no bounds; she loved him with all her heart. The swaying of the coach pressed them together. She inhaled his warm, male scent and snuggled closer, savoring the way her breast rubbed against his arm. She ached for the pressure of his lips on hers, yearning, yearning… She always woke before her dream lover kissed her.

     Not this time. His lips were warm and soft, his breath hot and laced with brandy. Her lips parted instinctively beneath his, and she heard herself give a little moan of pleasure. The tip of his tongue slipped between her lips and touched hers.

     The coach came to a halt. Her eyes fluttered open as she woke. The obnoxious lord who’d sworn he wouldn’t touch her broke the kiss, still holding her in his arms. She shoved at him, but he held fast.

     “How dare you?” she cried.

     The interior of the coach was still cloaked in gloom, but dawn was well on the way. She caught a glimpse of amused eyes before he pulled the brim of his hat over his face. “You fell asleep and slid right into my arms,” he said, his calm voice feeding her rage. “I couldn’t resist.”

     She wiped a hand across her mouth. “I was—I was—” She couldn’t get the words out. She’d been saving her first kiss for the man she would marry, and this dastardly person had stolen it.

     Thank God she was home. She wrenched herself from his arms just as the groom opened the door.      She tumbled out of the coach without waiting for the steps, gathered the skirts of her costume, and ran up the pavement to the house.

     She lifted the knocker and rapped it hard against the door, and rapped it again. And waited, shivering in the chill dawn wind, her arms tight about herself. Hurry!

     No one answered. The servants must be asleep, but surely Grandmama would have left someone on watch for her. She knocked once again. And waited.

     Silence, but for the shuffling of the horses, the barking of a dog, and the rumble of a wagon in the next street. London was coming to life.

     She turned, anxious now. Why did the coach still wait? “You needn’t stay any longer. Someone will wake up and let me in.”

     “Someone should already be awake and waiting,” the man said irritably from within the coach. He didn’t give the order to leave.

     Melinda rapped again. What was going on? She thought she heard a sound within the house, thought she heard a voice, and knocked once more… Nothing. This was ghastly. She had to get indoors before someone saw her.

     “Miss Starling, are you sure this is the right house?” The man who’d kissed her was framed in the coach window, his hat low over his brow once again.

     “Of course I’m sure. Why don’t they answer?”

     “Try the area stairs,” he suggested softly.

     She’d never gone in by the servants’ entrance, but it was a good idea, the sort she would usually think of herself, but she couldn’t get her mind to work properly. She lifted the latch and hurried down the steep, winding stairs, shivering now from anxiety as much as the chill dawn air. She banged hard on the door. It was close to the housekeeper’s room, so surely that kindly woman would hear.

From inside the house came a furious bellow. “No! Do not open that door.”

     Melinda froze. That was Grandma’s voice. She was…ordering the housekeeper not to let Melinda inside.

     Her shiver became a tremble. She stumbled up the steep, narrow stairs and through the gate. She gaped at the dark house, her home, its curtains drawn like the blank eyes of a statue, cold and forbidding and utterly silent again.

     “Damn,” the man who had kissed her said. “What the devil is going on?”

     The sky lightened, and it finally dawned on Melinda. Grandmama wasn’t going to let her in. She’d been turned away from her own home.

     “Did I hear her say not to open the door to you?” the man asked in a low, disbelieving voice.

     Melinda blinked back hot, horrified tears and faced him, away from the house and the grandmother who had always wanted to be rid of her. “She used to threaten to wash her hands of me,” she said. “And now she has done it.”









Winner of the Holt Medallion, Maggie, Daphne du Maurier, Reviewer’s Choice and Epic awards, Barbara Monajem wrote her first story at eight years old about apple tree gnomes. She published a middle-grade fantasy when her children were young. When they grew up, she turned to writing for grownups, first the Bayou Gavotte paranormal mysteries and then Regency romances with intrepid heroines and long-suffering heroes (or vice versa). Some of her Regencies have magic in them and some don’t (except for the magic of love, which is in every story she writes).



Barbara loves to cook, especially soups, and is an avid reader. There are only two items on her bucket list: to make asparagus pudding and succeed at knitting socks. She’ll manage the first but doubts she’ll ever accomplish the second. This is not a bid for immortality but merely the dismal truth. She lives near Atlanta, Georgia with an ever-shifting population of relatives, friends, and feline strays.














Friday, 26 June 2015

Elyse Douglas - The Summer Diary - Virtual Book Tour




Contemporary Romance
Date Published: May 7, 2015


After her best friend and her husband are killed in a private airplane crash, Keri finds some of her friend’s personal effects, one of which is a diary. When Keri reads it, she discovers her friend had been secretly in love with another man, a soldier. Keri knew nothing about the relationship, even though she and her friend were as close as sisters. 

Determined to find the secret lover, Keri sets off on a journey and discovers the key to her destiny.





Excerpt
Keri stopped, hovering on the edge of an absurd thought. Should she try to find Ryan? The thought gave her a sudden electric thrill. She stared down into the sand, seeing the eroded ruins of an old sandcastle that had been punished by the hostile tide.
“Ryan,” she said aloud, the sound instantly swallowed up by the beat of waves striking the beach.
Keri circled the space, gently kicking at the sand castle, mentally kicking at “what ifs.” What if he’d been killed? What if he’d moved away? What if he was married and didn’t want to remember Sophia? What if Sophia hadn’t revealed the whole truth about the relationship because there was some awful truth about him?
And how could she possibly ever locate Ryan without a last name? Sophia had never once mentioned it.
In an instant, Keri knew the decision had already been made: She had to find a way to track down and speak to this man. She whirled and marched back across the beach to where she’d left her chair and the diary. There had to be clues in the diary—had to be phrases that could help her find Ryan. At the very least, she could discover what had happened to him.







Elyse Douglas is the pen name for the married writing team Elyse Parmentier and Douglas Pennington. Elyse grew up near the sea, roaming the beaches, reading and writing stories and poetry, receiving a Degree in English Literature.  She has enjoyed careers as an English teacher, an actress and a  speech-language pathologist.  She and her husband, Douglas Pennington, have completed five novels: The Other Side of Summer, Christmas for Juliet, Wanting Rita, Christmas Ever After, The Christmas Town and The Christmas Diary.





Elyse Douglas
How to Avoid the Rejection Blues
Can you really sing avoid the rejection blues? Let’s face it: No. Who really likes rejection? If you’re a writer and you’ve spent months, or a year or two of your life on a book, you naturally want to sell it, or at least have someone look it over and perhaps even smile or nod approval. You’re excited and hopeful. You’re ready to be a recognized writer.
Then what happens? Nada. Nobody wants it. “Not for us,” the rejection letter says. “The author burned the house down. That didn’t ring true to me,” says an editor. “No room on our list for this worthy novel.” “I couldn’t relate to this. I didn’t like the dog.” “This novel crossed genres. Mustn’t do that.”
As a writer, I have had hundreds of rejections over the years. None have ever been pleasant. I’ve had agents send novels to many publishing houses. One book had two editors interested in it. Then the stock market collapsed and those editors lost their jobs. The next people in charge, who were not editors but accountants, shot the book down. “Don’t have the funds,” they said.
Could I ignore the rejection blues? No. At least not at first. Then I listened to other writers’ stories of rejection and struggle. They all, every one of them, had been rejected many times.
Nearly every writer knows about Stephen King’s many rejections for his first novel, Carrie; he kept them spiked under a timber in his bedroom. There were about 30 of them.
After John le Carré submitted his first novel, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, one publisher sent it to a colleague, and this was the message: You’re welcome to le Carré – he hasn’t got any future.
Tony Hillerman, now famous for his Navajo Tribal Police mystery novels, was initially told by publishers to Get rid of all that Indian stuff.
John Steinbeck said, I have written a great many stories and I still don’t know how to go about it except to write it and take my chances.
So I say it’s okay, in the privacy of your room, to get mad, swear and yell when you get a rejection. Then go out and have a beer or a cappuccino with a good friend. Don’t talk about writing.
Then go home, take two aspirin or whatever, and go to bed. The next morning, get up and go to your desk. Sit down and write. You’re a writer. So write and remember
what Somerset Maugham once said. There are three rules for writing. Unfortunately, no one can agree what they are.
Finally, many writers do sell books. Some after months of rejection, some after years. So write, have fun and learn to harmonize with the rejection blues until that stupendous day comes and your book is sold or published. And then you can look forward to your first reviews! But that’s an article for another day.

Copyright © 2015 Elyse Douglas






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LUCK OF THE IRISH Pre-Order Blog Tour‏



Luck of the Irish
by Sara Humphreys
Series: Leprechaun's Gold, #1
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Fantasy Romance
Release Date: June 30, 2015






A leprechaun is powerless without his gold….



Banished to the mirrored realm for hundreds of years, Declan Aherne had nothing but time to plot his revenge and mourn the loss of his beloved wife. But when a beautiful human woman, with a familiar amulet, stares into the mirror….Declan’s luck was about to change.







The gold emblem, the one that matched her necklace, sat at the top of the oval gilded frame, and when she leaned closer she realized that it was a recessed space. She ran her finger over it and let out a shuddering breath. Maggie had a sinking suspicion that the amulet around her neck would fit perfectly in that space.



“A key,” she whispered through trembling lips. “Aunt Lizzie said the amulet was a key to release the leprechaun from his prison.”



Rising to her feet, Maggie carried the mirror down the narrow hallway to her bedroom. She bumped the door open with her hip and stepped into the small, cozy green and white room. When she changed clothes earlier she’d already removed the old print and left the blank spot above her dresser for her long sought after prize.



With great care she hung the mirror onto the nail and adjusted it so that it was straight. She stepped back and inspected it as she removed the amulet and gold chain from around her neck. The heavy, gold disc felt warm in her palm as she curled her fingers around it and debated what to do next.



Part of her was as eager as a kid on Christmas Eve brimming with anticipation. She wanted to slip the amulet right into that spot on the frame and see if the fairy tale was true. But the other part of her, the one that dominated at the moment, was reluctant. Not because she was afraid of a leprechaun jumping out of the mirror.



In fact, it was exactly the opposite.



What if after all this time and all the searching she puts the amulet in the mirror and nothing happens? That would be a big, fat, fucking let down of colossal proportions.



Tears stung her eyes and she sniffled, laughing out loud at her foolishness. How long had she been searching for the mirror never really believing she’d find it? The hunt for this treasure was what kept her going after family was gone. It was like an invisible tie that kept her connected to them, but now she’d found it and the hunt was over.



It was a stark reminder that her family was never coming back.



Maggie was alone.



“I wish the story was true, Aunt Lizzie,” she whispered. “But true or not, thank you for sharing it with me….I miss you all so much.”



She turned her teary gaze to her reflection as she ran her fingertip over the amulet. It was time to face the truth and stop hiding inside her own fairy tales, the ones she perpetuated every time she went in search of the magical mirror from Aunt Lizzie’s stories. She had to face the reality of the world she lived in.



Her family was gone and they weren’t coming back. The mirror wasn’t magic and she wasn’t anything special, and the only way to really face it was to put the amulet in the mirror—and watch as nothing happened.



Fairy tales weren’t real.

Neither were leprechauns or warlocks.

No more hiding from the world or retreating into fanciful stories.



“Time to face the truth.”



Maggie pressed the amulet to her lips before reaching up and slipping the disc into the recessed spot at the top of the mirror. The moment it clicked into place she whispered the Gaelic phrase Aunt Lizzie always uttered when she told this part of the story. “Scaoileadh mé tú.”



At first nothing happened and Maggie was ready to drown herself in the rest of the chardonnay. She was about to leave the room in search of the wine when a ripple in her reflection caught her eye. Maggie swallowed hard and squinted, not sure she was actually seeing what she thought she was seeing. But sure enough the glass surface of the mirror began to undulate and swell like silver waves in an otherworldly ocean.



She backed up as her image in the mirror blurred and a low, pulsing throbbing sound began to rumble through the room. Maggie scrambled backward and up onto the bed as the deafening noise grew louder by the second. Her hands flew to hear ears, the pulsing noise permeating every single cell of her body making her teeth clatter. It felt like the entire building would come down around her any second and if she wasn't completely paralyzed by fear, she might have run.



But Maggie couldn’t move. She curled up into the fetal position, hands over her ears, as the world rumbled around her. She half expected the ground to open up and swallow her whole.



A split second later, the mirror erupted in an explosion of light and Maggie squeezed her eyes shut. As a scream threatened to rip from her throat the world went completely silent and still. No more bone rattling throbbing running through the air. The shaking and trembling had ceased, except for her body. She was quivering like a damn leaf and cowering on her bed like a total coward.



Her heart hammered against her ribcage and her eyes were screwed tightly shut as the unmistakable sound of someone breathing heavily filled the room. At first, she thought it was her own breath because she was huffing and puffing like she’d run a freaking marathon. But about a second later, it became glaringly clear she was no longer alone.



The fairy tale was true.









Sara Humphreys is a graduate of Marist College, with a B.A. Degree in English Literature & Theater. Her initial career path after college was as a professional actress. Some of her television credits include, A&E Biography, Guiding Light, Another World, As the World Turns and Rescue Me.



In 2013 Sara's novel UNTAMED won two PRISM awards--Dark Paranormal and Best of the Best.

She loves writing hot heroes and heroines with moxie but above all, Sara adores a satisfying happily-ever-after. She lives in New York with her husband, their four amazing sons, and two adorable pups. When she's not writing or hanging out with the men in her life, she can be found working out with Shaun T in her living room or chatting with readers on Facebook.



For a full list of Sara's books and reading order, please visit her website.