Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Wear White to Your Funeral by Lisa Acerbo

Title: Wear White to Your Funeral
Author: Lisa Acerbo
Genre: Mystery, Romance, Young Adult
Release Date: October 28, 2016

Summary:
Rory is your average high school senior. Or she was, until her mother banishes her to hell, also known as Trumbull, Connecticut. The small suburb with only a mall and movie theater, sure feels like the netherworld until Rory’s first day at her new school. That’s the day she meets Bowen, who begs her to join him on a class project. But when Bowen drags her to a graveyard after dark for research purposes, Rory wants to fly back home to Atlanta, or at least return to her aunt’s house unharmed and unmolested.

Nothing could go wrong, right? They talk, they laugh, and they wander among the tombstones looking for information on the local ghostly legend known as the White Lady. Then they have to run, but they cannot outrun a ghost. In addition to the ghostly woman, a half buried dead body leads Rory and Bowen into a deadly game of cat and mouse, but who is the killer? Is it human or something long dead and otherworldly?

The police are of little help, Rory’s aunt just wants her to remain safe, and Bowen, who she can’t stay away from, keeps finding ways to get her into more trouble than she has ever known. Whether breaking into a suspected killer’s house, being followed by a menacing ghost, or being stalked at school, Rory hopes finding the killer will put an end to the supernatural haunting. Before Rory can discover the identity of the killer, she is drawn into the mystery of the White Lady, which opens the door for some very real danger.

1. What is the biggest influence/interest that brought you to this genre?
I love the supernatural and how it relates to history. After writing about another local legend, the Old Leather Man, I came across the story of the White Lady, a ghost who haunts the Union Cemetery in Easton, Connecticut. Some say she is Harriet B. Seeley, who had a son die in childhood. Now, Seeley’s ghost walks through the graves endlessly searching for him.

There are other interesting story about the White Lady. Local lore suggests that the White Lady could be Ellen Smathers, a woman who was murdered in the cemetery in the 1800s. Smathers was stalked by Richard Dean Jason. Jason murdered Smather’s husband and dumped his body near the cemetery. Jason hoped this act of murder would demonstrate his deep emotions. When Ellen Smathers didn’t return Jason’s feelings, he murdered her and dumped her body next to her husband. Now Ellen Smathers wanders the cemetery.

The White Lady makes an interesting ghostly figure in my upcoming YA novel.

2. When writing a book, what is your favorite part of the creative process (outline, plot, character names, editing, etc)?
My favorite part of the creative process is writing the tagline and blurb. It’s like a puzzle. I have to condense a 70,000 word book into a single sentence or a few paragraphs. I love the idea of distilling the book into its essence. It’s not easy and takes a lot of revision, but I find it fun.

3. When reading a book, what genre do you find most interesting/intriguing?
I like to try and read a little bit of everything. I grew up reading novels by Judy Blume, Johanna Lindsey, Dean Koontz, and Stephen King, among others. While entirely different genres, these authors inspired me to want to read more and write fiction. Authors who can construct vivid conflicts and life-like characters in relationships, romantic or otherwise create great stories.  These days, as a teacher, I am inspired by the books my high school students read like Harry Potter, the Chicagoland Vampire Series, and The Hunger Games, as well as authors such as John Green. I enjoy reading romances with action and adventure, and I hope to create a book with those elements.

4. If you could co-author with any author, past or present, who would you choose?
Stephen King. I love Stephen King and recently reread The Green Mile. King is such a great story teller, and his novels remind me why I enjoy teaching others about literature and practicing the craft myself. Even though I could never come close to King’s level of mastery, reading great stories makes me want to become a better writer. I would love to co-author a book with him, but it would be incredibly intimidating.

5. Have you always wanted to write or did it come to you "later in life"?
I majored in English during college, thinking that I wanted to become a journalist, but instead became a high school English teacher. While a full-time teacher now, I have also continued to write and publish. Before turning to fiction, my articles appeared in the Connecticut Post, Trumbull Patch and Hollywood Scriptwriter. Writing a novel was on my bucket list, but I started the process late in life and made LOTS of mistakes. Now that I have completed the goal of writing a book, I am changing my bucket list entry to writing a series of books. Who knows, maybe this will be the first of many adventures for my main characters, Rory and Bowen.

Author Bio:
Lisa Acerbo is a high school teacher and holds an EdD in Educational Leadership. She lives in Connecticut with her husband, daughters, three cats, and horse. She is the author of Apocalipstick and has contributed to local newspapers, news and travel blogs including The Patch and Hollywood Scriptwriter.


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Tru Blue by Melissa Foster

Title: Tru Blue
Author: Melissa Foster
Genre: Dark Romance
Release Date: November 9, 2016


Summary:
Imagine falling in love with a man, then finding out he was a killer...

TRU BLUE is a sexy, dark stand-alone novel written in the same loving, raw, and emotional voice romance readers have come to love, and the deeply emotional literary prose women's fiction readers have come to expect, from New York Times & USA Today bestselling, award-winning author Melissa Foster.

He wore the skin of a killer, and bore the heart of a lover...

There's nothing Truman Gritt won't do to protect his family--Including spending years in jail for a crime he didn't commit. When he's finally released, the life he knew is turned upside down by his mother's overdose, and Truman steps in to raise the children she's left behind. Truman's hard, he's secretive, and he's trying to save a brother who's even more broken than he is. He's never needed help in his life, and when beautiful Gemma Wright tries to step in, he's less than accepting. But Gemma has a way of slithering into people's lives and eventually she pierces through his ironclad heart. When Truman's dark past collides with his future, his loyalties will be tested, and he'll be faced with his toughest decision yet.


TRUMAN GRITT LOCKED the door to Whiskey Automotive and stepped into the stormy September night. Sheets of rain blurred his vision, instantly drenching his jeans and T-shirt. A slow smile crept across his face as he tipped his chin up, soaking in the shower of freedom. He made his way around the dark building and climbed the wooden stairs to the deck outside his apartment. He could have used the interior door, but after being behind bars for six long years, Truman took advantage of the small pleasures he’d missed out on, like determining his own schedule, deciding when to eat and drink, and standing in the f**king rain if he wanted to. He leaned on the rough wooden railing, ignoring the splinters of wood piercing his tattooed forearms, squinted against the wetness, and scanned the cars in the junkyard they used for parts—and he used to rid himself of frustrations. He rested his leather boot on the metal box where he kept his painting supplies. Truman didn’t have much—his old extended-cab truck, which his friend Bear Whiskey had held on to for him while he was in prison, this apartment, and a solid job, both of which were compliments of the Whiskey family. The only family he had anymore.

Emotions he didn’t want to deal with burned in his gut, causing his chest to constrict. He turned to go inside, hoping to outrun thoughts of his own f**ked-up family, whom he’d tried—and failed—to save. His cell phone rang with his brother’s ringtone, “A Beautiful Lie” by 30 Seconds to Mars.

“F**k,” he muttered, debating letting the call go to voicemail, but six months of silence from his brother was a long time. Rain pelleted his back as he pressed his palm to the door to steady himself. The ringing stopped, and he blew out a breath he hadn’t realized he’d trapped inside. The phone rang again, and he froze.

He’d just freed himself from the dredges of hell that he’d been thrown into in an effort to save his brother. He didn’t need to get wrapped up in whatever mess the drug-addicted fool had gotten himself into. The call went to voicemail, and Truman eyed the metal box containing his painting supplies. Breathing like he’d been in a fight, he wished he could paint the frustration out of his head. When the phone rang for the third time in as many minutes, the third time since he was released from prison six months ago, he reluctantly answered.

“Quincy.” He hated the way his brother’s name came out sounding like the enemy. Quincy had been just a kid when Truman went to prison. Heavy breathing filled the airwaves. The hairs on Truman’s forearms and neck stood on end. He knew fear when he heard it. He could practically taste it as he ground his teeth together.

“I need you,” his brother’s tortured voice implored.

Need me? Truman had hunted down his brother after he was released from prison, and when he’d finally found him, Quincy was so high on crack he was nearly incoherent—but it didn’t take much for f**k off to come through loud and clear. What Quincy needed was rehab, but Truman knew from his tone that wasn’t the point of the call.

Before he could respond, his brother croaked out, “It’s Mom. She’s really bad.”​

What Others Are Saying:
"Several emotional topics -- such as drug addiction, abandonment, infertility and unexpectedly becoming a parent -- are easily woven together without making the story feel crowded or overdone. Foster writes exceptional characters that keep readers thinking long after the book is finished... The dynamic members of the Whiskey family are the foundation that holds the group together and they are exactly the reason we're taught not to judge. Let's hope we hear more from all of them!" RT Book Reviews

"Sexy and Heartbreaking....I simply adored this beautifully written romance." Tasty Book PR

"Ms. Foster, went for the gut with Truman and Gemma. Tru Blue is more than a romance, it is a story of love, a story of hope and a story of courage. 10 + stars." Night Owl Reviews

"With her wonderful characters and resonating emotions, Melissa Foster is a must-read author!" New York Times Bestseller Julie Kenner

"Melissa Foster is synonymous with sexy, swoony, heartfelt romance!" New York Times Bestseller Lauren Blakely

"You can always rely on Melissa Foster to deliver a story that's fresh, emotional and entertaining. Make sure you have all night, because once you start you won't want to stop reading. Every book's a winner!" NYT Bestselling Author Brenda Novak



Author Bio:
Melissa Foster is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning author. She writes contemporary romance, new adult, contemporary women’s fiction, suspense, and historical fiction with emotionally compelling characters that stay with you long after you turn the last page. Her books have been recommended by USA Today’s book blog, Hagerstown Magazine, The Patriot, and several other print venues. She is the founder of the World Literary CafĂ© and Fostering Success. When she’s not writing, Melissa helps authors navigate the publishing industry through her author training programs on Fostering Success. Melissa has been published in Calgary’s Child Magazine, the Huffington Post, and Women Business Owners magazine.

Melissa hosts an Aspiring Authors contest for children and has painted and donated several murals to The Hospital for Sick Children in Washington, DC. Melissa lives in Maryland with her family.

Visit Melissa on social media. Melissa enjoys discussing her books with book clubs and reader groups, and welcomes an invitation to your event.


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