Thursday, April 30, 2015

Highlander Redeemed by Laurin Wittig

Title: Highlander Redeemed
Author: Laurin Wittig
Series: Guardians of theTarge
Genre: Medieval Romance
Release Date: May 12, 2015
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Cover Artist: Regina Wamba
Scotia MacAlpin may be only eighteen years old, but she’s no stranger to trouble. Her latest incident—which resulted in a death and forced her clan into battle—has made her an outcast among her exiled people. Scotia is tired of being ignored and trapped in the shadow of her sister, a gifted Guardian of the Targe; and she’s become hell-bent on destroying the army out to capture the ancient Highland relic for their English king.

Duncan of Dunlairig has looked out for Scotia since she started to walk. She was as restless and reckless then as she is now—only the stakes have become higher and more perilous. While the rest of Clan MacAlpin ostracizes her, he secretly helps Scotia become the warrior she yearns to be. But the real test of her skills may come when Duncan needs her help—and her long-forgotten heart—in this thrilling and romantic Guardians of the Targe tale.

     Duncan braced himself for the verbal battle to come, but before he could make himself known, Scotia began to move, hesitantly and without her usual grace, but so focused on her task he could almost taste her determination. She watched her feet, letting her weapons go slack in her hands. Even so, he quickly recognized the exercise Malcolm had been teaching the lads a few days ago. She shook her head, then started the series of moves again, talking to herself just under her breath. She repeated the process over and over until, all of a sudden, she flew through the short exercise as if it were a dance she had known her entire life, thrusting, parrying, spinning, attacking the dirt clad roots of a toppled tree. The sharp sound of wood on wood reverberated through the forest like a woodpecker hammering on a hollow log.
     His breath caught in his chest. She was magnificent. Beautiful. Strong.
     She fought as if demons threatened her life.
     And Duncan could not take his eyes off her. She was everything he would expect her to be if he did not know her so well.

Top 10 Historical Fiction Themed Books
It’s always difficult when someone asks me to pick favorites like this but I’ll give it a whirl – one caveat, many of my favorite “historical fiction” books weren’t written as historicals, but rather as contemporaries (think Jane Austen writing about the world she lived in), also some of these aren’t romances but they were formative in my reading and writing life. In no particular order:

Little Women – Louisa May Alcott
The Other Boleyn Girl – Phillipa Gregory
A Knight in Shining Armor – Jude Devereaux
Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
Untamed/Forbidden/Enchanted – a 3-fer from Elizabeth Lowell
Home by Morning – Alexis Harrington
Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
To Love and to Cherish/To Have and to Hold/Forever and Ever – a 3-fer from Patricia Gaffney
Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
Memoires of a Geisha – Arthur Golden

1. What is the biggest influence/interest that brought you to this genre?
The thing that brought me to writing this genre was that I could not find enough Scottish historical romances to feed my addiction. Seriously, when I first discovered this genre of romance there weren’t very many people writing in it, or at least there weren’t very many carried at my local Border’s at the time. As a reader, well, romance brought me to these books, but also I had been to Scotland when I was eleven and fell hard for the place and the people, so combining the two into one story was the best of everything.

2. When writing a book, what is your favorite part of the creative process (outline, plot, character names, editing, etc)?
Okay, not outlining. Shudder. I am not a linear thinker so outlines have never worked for me, not even in elementary school. The part of the creative process I love the best is the pre-writing part when I’m brainstorming characters, researching the history, mulling over maps to find just the perfect setting, auditioning plots, making lists of possible scenes, and the story is unfolding in my head like a storyboard for a movie. At that point my story is perfect…and then I start writing and discover all the holes in the story I didn’t see before. That’s when the “work” part of the process starts.

3. When reading a book, what genre do you find most interesting/intriguing?
Honestly, since I’ve become a full time author I don’t read fiction much anymore, but when I do read fiction in the last few years it always seems to be either paranormal romance (love Nalini Sinhg’s Psi series and Susannah Sandlin’s Penton Vampire Legacy series!) or YA – The Hunger Games series being the one that really grabbed me. I think I gravitate to these genres for the same reason I love to include paranormal elements in my novels – there’s something wonderful about the possibility that there are things in this universe that we aren’t aware of in our “real” lives. They all transport me not just to another time and place, but another reality with enough in common with this world to allow me to connect with the characters, but enough different that the conflicts are intriguing, the cultures are fascinating, and the solutions to problems are perhaps not what I would have thought of. They stretch my imagination and fuel my dreams. And if there’s some romance in there, too? Heaven!

4. If you could co-author with any author, past or present, who would you choose?
Wow, great question! I’ve never thought about co-authoring with anyone except my daughter, and that was a screenplay that we never finished. If I was coauthoring one of my Scottish romances I think it would be wonderful to work with my good friend Tanya Anne Crosby. We love the same things about the genre and she has such a great voice. I love her stories and she’s such a hard working, generous person, I know we’d have fun and we’d come up with something wonderful.

5. Have you always wanted to write or did it come to you ΚΊlater in lifeΚΊ?
Well these days “later in life” is relative. I came to writing with the idea of publishing something in my late 20s, but I was a dedicated journaler starting in high school, and then turned my writing urge to creating curriculum for computer classes, then technical writing, also computer related, and finally to novels, which seems obvious given my reading addiction from the moment I learned to read. I can’t imagine doing anything else anymore!

Thanks for asking great, thought provoking questions and hosting me today!

Author Bio:
Laurin Wittig was indoctrinated into her Scottish heritage at birth when her parents chose her oddly spelled name from a plethora of Scottish family names. At ten, Laurin attended her first MacGregor clan gathering with her grandparents, and her first ceilidh (kay-lee), a Scottish party, where she danced to the bagpipes with the hereditary chieftain of the clan. At eleven, she visited Scotland for the first time and it has inhabited her imagination ever since. She writes bestselling and award-winning Scottish medieval romances and lives in southeastern Virginia. For more information about all of Laurin’s books, visit


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The Infinite Expanse by BC Powell

Title: The Infinite Expanse
Author: BC Powell
Series: Journals of Krymzyn #2
Genre: Fantasy, New Adult, Science Fiction
Release Date: March 31, 2015
Evil lurks in the desolate Barrens of Krymzyn. For millions of Eras, predators with insatiable cravings have prowled the wasteland. When a traitor of the Delta enters their realm, the solitary beasts may finally have a leader to unite them.

As a new order emerges in the Barrens, Chase and Sash begin their lives together. While Chase fights to prove he belongs in Krymzyn, the power inside Sash flourishes in ways no one could have imagined. But a vengeance from the wasteland is soon unleashed upon them.

After Chase is trapped deep in the Barrens, his only escape is into the Infinite Expanse. Unaware of the deathly perils that take shape there, he may be lost forever. For Sash to return him from the endless wilderness, she’ll have to harness a mystical energy not seen since the beginning of time.

1. What is the biggest influence/interest that brought you to this genre?
As a teenage reader, the works of three authors opened my mind to the possibilities of fantasy and science fiction in different ways. “The Chronicles of Narnia” by C.S. Lewis was the first fantasy series I read, and it showed me there are very few boundaries in a properly developed fantasy world. Frank Herbert’s “Dune” was not only a mind-boggling read from the sci-fi perspective, but also taught me how a powerful social statement could be made in the genre. And J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings” showed me how strong the connection between a reader and characters can be during an amazing fantasy journey.

2. When writing a book, what is your favorite part of the creative process(outline, plot, character names, editing, etc)?
My favorite part is developing the characters. I strongly believe that the connection to the characters is what allows a reader to fully escape into a fantasy world. My goal as an author is to achieve an emotional connection between the reader and the story so that it all becomes very real. Suspended reality happens because of the reader’s empathy for the characters and trust they gain in them.

3. When reading a book, what genre do you find most interesting/intriguing?
Fantasy has always been my favorite genre, preferably with a light dose of science fiction mixed in. When I read, I want my imagination to be triggered in a way that it hasn’t been before. I like to become completely absorbed in the story and characters, and fantasy allows the reader to separate from real life while taking a journey through the world created by the author. I believe we learn a lot about ourselves while in a fantasy world based on our reactions to the characters and events we encounter.

4. If you could co-author with any author, past or present, who would you choose?
I will answer this question honestly. I would never want to co-write anything with another author. I have a very distinct vision for where my stories are going and how the characters develop. When I’m in the middle of writing a story, I become almost reclusive because I don’t want any distractions from my focus on the story. I think it would be impossible for me to get through the process with another person. I love talking to other authors about the writing process and try to learn as much as I can from them. But when I sit down to write, it’s something I need to do alone.

5. Have you always wanted to write or did it come to you "later in life"?
I’ve known I wanted to be a writer since I was about twelve. I wrote my first novel at sixteen, many short stories in my twenties, another novel at thirty, another at forty, and now, after half a century of life, I’m finally devoting all of my time to writing and publishing fiction. It’s something I’ve always known I wanted to do, but I didn’t get serious about it until later in life.

Author Bio:
BC Powell is a fantasy author from Los Angeles, CA. His debut science fiction fantasy novel "Krymzyn" was published in October, 2014. "The Infinite Expanse", the highly anticipated second book in "The Journals of Krymzyn" series, is scheduled for release on March 31, 2015.

Powell has a diverse background, having held several creative positions in the entertainment industry, including executive roles at ABC-TV and Technicolor. In recent years, he's authored several non-fiction works, primarily educational books and training programs for trading the financial markets. He dual majored in journalism and philosophy at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas.

Writing fiction has been his lifelong passion and goal. “The Journals of Krymzyn” represents, in his words, “finally finding the story I want to tell with characters that are able to bring that story to life.” He's an avid reader and lists Ernest Hemingway, Frank L. Herbert, Stephen King, Jane Austen, and Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. as his favorite authors.

Brad, as he prefers to go by in personal communication, lives with his longtime girlfriend, three sons from a previous marriage, and their rescue dog and cat. He enjoys hiking, ocean kayaking, spending time at Southern California beaches, movies, and reading.


The Infinite Expanse #2

Krymzyn #1

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Scars by Elena M Reyes

Title: Scars
Author: Elena M Reyes
Series: Marked #3
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: April 19, 2015

Thrown away.


Every single one of those could be used to describe me. They can tell you my story—my sad past—without a single syllable passing through my lips.

I hate them—those who lied to me. They claimed to love me, but in reality they used me when convenient. My parents. Sister. And now Talan. Loving them has left me empty. Sad. 


Not anymore. Screw them. My love has turned to anger…hate. Now, what consumes me is the urge to destroy, to force them to see what they wrecked with their carelessness. My name will never be forgotten. Not after I have my revenge.

His tears will be my ultimate retribution.

Author Bio:
Elena M. Reyes was born and raised in Miami Florida. She is the epitome of a Floridian and if she could live in her beloved flip-flops, she would. As a small child, she was always intrigued with all forms of art—whether it was dancing to island rhythms, or painting with any medium she could get her hands on. Her first taste of writing came to her during her fifth grade year when her class was prompted to participate in the D. A. R. E. Program and write an essay on what they’d learned. Her passion for reading over the years has amassed her with hours of pleasure. It wasn’t until she stumbled upon fanfiction that her thirst to write overtook her world. She now resides in Central Florida with her husband and son, spending all her down time letting her creativity flow and letting her characters                                grow.


Scars #3

Marking Her #1

Marking Him #2

Teasing Hands #1

Taunting Lips #.5

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Release Day Blitz: Get Even by Amanda Heath

Title: Get Even
Author: Amanda Heath
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: April 30, 2015
He broke my heart.
She died.
He used me.
She made my world go round.

He tore me apart, put me back together and tore me up again.

She was the only person who truly loved me.
My mental state is…questionable. My life is in ruins. My heart is ripped to shreds and it’ll probably never be put back together again.
My twin sister, Sarah, passed away a few days ago. She was the sun in my sky, the grass between my toes and the light to my dark. I miss her so much. I don’t know if I can go on without her.
My ex boyfriend, Tate, has come back into town for the funeral. I feel rage. I feel despair. I have violent urges. I have this need for revenge were he’s concerned.
My brother-in-law, Max, is acting…strange. I think he’s hiding something, something I don’t want to find out. He might be the glue though, the glue I need to hold me together.
My name is Farah and I want to get even for every single lie I’ve been told. I want to get even for all the things people have hid from me. Mostly I want to get even for this black hole my heart has been turned into.

*Complete standalone. Not connected to any other series. That is the only warning you'll get.

     "What the hell are you doing?!" Max yells out from the top of the stairs.
     I bite my lip and look down at Tate. The play sword is still in my hand over my head waiting for another chance to hit him. I'm straddling his hips and I kind of forgot how we even got this way, "Ummm..." I stutter out.
     Tate clears his throat and looks up at his brother, "Just a bit of foreplay."
     My face screws up in anger and the sword comes down on Tate. "You wouldn't know foreplay if it bit you on the ass!" I say, repeatedly beating Tate with the plastic sword. I know it stings because Blake's hit me enough times with it.
     Tate finally throws his arms over his head trying to protect himself, "You lie! You're the one who is always telling me to 'put it in' or 'fuck me now, Tatum' it's your fault!"
     "She calls you Tatum in the bedroom?" Max asks.
     I glare down at Tate with all the pissed off anger I can muster. "You answer that question and I'll show you foreplay with this sword and your ass."

Author Bio:
I live in southern Arkansas with my husband and young daughter. There is also an insane Boston Terrier running around. I've always been a lone wolf and find my friends in books. I started writing at a young age and I haven't stopped since. Most days you can find me either glued to my laptop or my kindle. My first novel, This Beautiful Thing was an Amazon best seller for 11 weeks and a year later I'm still tickled to see people enjoy it. I may not be a huge seller but I have the best fans ever and I thank God everyday for every single one of them.


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Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Hoarfrost by Jordan L Hawk

Sorcerer Percival Endicott Whyborne and his husband Griffin Flaherty have enjoyed an unprecedented stretch of peace and quiet. Unfortunately, the calm is shattered by the arrival of a package from Griffin’s brother Jack, who has uncovered a strange artifact while digging for gold in Alaska. The discovery of a previously unknown civilization could revive the career of their friend Dr. Christine Putnam—or it might kill them all, if the hints of dark sorcery surrounding the find are true.

With Christine and her fiancΓ© Iskander, Whyborne and Griffin must journey to the farthest reaches of the arctic to stop an ancient evil from claiming the life of Griffin’s brother. But in the rough mining camp of Hoarfrost, secrets fly as thickly as the snow, and Whyborne isn’t the only sorcerer drawn by the rumors of magic. Amidst a wilderness of ice and stone, Griffin must either face his greatest fear—or lose everyone he loves.

How is it possible that after all their adventures, Whyborne & Griffin keep getting better?  I guess Miss Hawk really knows how to bring the chemistry between, not only our favorite couple, but also Griffin and his newly found brother, Christine and Iskander, and even how Iskander is fitting in with our heroic trio, to life.  In Hoarfrost, as it was in Necropolis, we get to see Whyborne away from his element and home of Widdershins, not always a good thing but he deals with it as only Whyborne can. A story filled with passion, intrigue, mystery, and of course all the good and bad that defines paranormal.  Of course, not everything or everyone is as black and white as it seems, there's always layers to sift through to find the truth.  I loved seeing Griffin finally able to deal with his past, although watching him have to face his parents rejection is heartbreaking, having Whyborne and the little family they have soothes not only Griffin's heartache but the reader's too.


“How many to a bed, did you say?” Whyborne asked, sounding a bit faint.

I put an expression of mild concern on my face, although in truth I wasn’t surprised in the slightest. Having been to many a frontier town—albeit never one so damnably cold—I’d guessed our accommodations would be a far cry from our hotel in Threshold, let alone Shepheard’s in Cairo. But, as with the scurvy, I’d neglected to mention the details when discussing it with Whyborne.

Not to suggest I’d truly wished to deceive him. Nor had I omitted things because I feared he would otherwise refuse to come. But Christine and I quietly agreed that this way, we would only have to listen to Whyborne’s complaints once we actually arrived, as opposed to the entire trip here.

“Four,” Iskander replied, rather apologetically. We stood in the cramped front room of the hotel, which doubled as a saloon and restaurant. Men sat at rough-hewn tables, and a few of the town’s women circulated among them. The air stank of wet wool, raw lumber, and unwashed bodies.

“Four,” Whyborne repeated.

“The beds aren’t narrow—they’re made extra wide,” Iskander offered. “They aren’t what one would call comfortable, and of course there’s the danger of lice, but they’re quite warm at least.”

Whyborne paled at the mention of lice. The color looked particularly bad when paired with the puce scarf.

“We’ve roughed it before,” I said, patting his arm. “Egypt was hardly a pleasure jaunt. And it is only for one night.”

My reminder didn’t serve to cheer him. “Not that I’ll sleep a moment of it. I don’t mind living rough, but…”

“Don’t you worry,” Jack said. He gave Whyborne a bright grin. “St. Michael might be rough, but it’s no Skagway. None of these fellows will try to rob you in your sleep, I promise.”

Ival’s look of alarm confirmed my guess he hadn’t even considered the possibility until now. “Oh, do stop complaining, Whyborne,” Christine said. “We’re all exhausted, and standing about isn’t going to change things.”

“Easy for you to say,” he muttered. Christine would of course be bunking with the two or three other respectable—or mostly respectable—ladies who had come on the steamer with us. I suspected their small room in the back of the hotel would be far more comfortable than ours, if only because it wouldn’t be packed to the rafters with snoring men.

“Perhaps we should turn in,” Iskander suggested. “An early start and all that.”

“Yes, quite.” Christine looked as if she wished to say something further to him, but felt constrained by our presence. It must have been difficult, having been separated for so long, but unable to touch or speak openly without inviting scandal. At least Whyborne and I could slip away alone without causing comment.

Of course, once they married, Christine and Iskander would be expected to sleep in the same bed, and do so openly. I pressed my thumb against the heavy band on my left hand, the gold warm from the heat of my body. There was no reason to resent Christine; it was hardly her fault, and she’d been nothing if not staunchly loyal.

Still, it meant this trip would probably include an extended interlude of celibacy, unless we were exceedingly quick and discreet about things. Another fact I hadn’t mentioned to Whyborne.

Author Bio:
Jordan L. Hawk grew up in the wilds of North Carolina, where she was raised on stories of haints and mountain magic by her bootlegging granny and single mother. After using a silver knife in the light of a full moon to summon her true love, she turned her talents to spinning tales. She weaves together couples who need to fall in love, then throws in some evil sorcerers and undead just to make sure they want it bad enough. In Jordan’s world, love might conquer all, but it just as easily could end up in the grave.


Hoarfrost #6

Whyborne & Griffin Series

Carousel #3.4 (Another Place in Time Anthology)
B&N  /  KOBO  /  iTUNES  /  ARe

Remnant: A Caldwell & Feximal/Whyborne & Griffin Mystery #3.5