Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Blog Tour: Sneaking Out by Chuck Vance

Title: Sneaking Out #1
Author: Chuck Vance
Series: Chased #1
Genre: Mystery, Young Adult
Release Date: March 6, 2018
Publisher: Dunemere Books

Summary:
Could you sleep next to a murderer?

Luke Chase—yes, that Luke Chase, a modern hero ripped from the headlines—didn’t mean to get caught up in Mrs. Heckler’s murder. He just wanted to hook up with the hot new British girl at St. Benedict’s, and if that meant sneaking out to the woods after hours, then so be it. But little did he know someone would end up dead right next to their rendezvous spot, and his best friend and roommate Oscar Weymouth would go down for it. With suspects aplenty and a past that’s anything but innocent, Luke Chase reluctantly calls on his famous survival skills to find the true killer.

For fans of “A Study in Charlotte” and boarding school lit, “Sneaking Out” (book one in the “Chased” series) immerses readers in the privileged prep school world, with a mystery that exposes the dark side of life on a residential high school campus.

What is the biggest influence/interest that brought you to this genre?
I love mystery and I love crime. It’s just always been that way since I was a child. My favorite board game as a kid was 221 B Baker Street, which was based on Sherlock Holmes’ stories and you had to solve the mysteries. My favorite children’s picture book was THE MYSTERY AT NUMBER SEVEN RUE PETIT. My favorite class in middle school was Law, where we studied all of the most famous court cases. I’ve always been a fan of puzzles—jigsaw and crosswords—so maybe that’s why I enjoy creating puzzles in my head and then turning them into mystery books. I am intrigued by the who done it, and also the why they done it. I also find it interesting that the most banal people can end up being murderers.

When writing a book, what is your favorite part of the creative process(outline, plot, character names, editing, etc)?
It’s very easy to say what I hate about the writing process: I hate outlining, starting a book and inputting edits! Those are my least favorite parts! I love when I am in the middle of writing a book, and particularly, when I have stopped writing and I know exactly what the next chapter will be so when I sit down, it’s all there. I have a real thing about naming characters, I sort through those in my head first and I can’t be influenced by other people’s ideas. I also enjoy creating peripheral characters, the supporting cast, because they all have to be unique and memorable in their own way and that can be fun. I spend time on the backstories of my characters, it really helps to know what they will do in a situation.

When reading a book, what genre do you find most interesting/intriguing?
Crime/Thriller and mysteries are my favorite. My favorite contemporary writer is Michael Connelly and my favorite book of all time is THE SECRET HISTORY by Donna Tartt. I really enjoyed reading John Douglas’ true crime books, and I have devoured almost all of Agatha Christie’s books. I am on X in Sue Grafton’s alphabet series, almost done! (sad there is no Z.)

If you could co-author with any author, past or present, who would you choose?
Nabokov. No one had a better command of language than he did. I also admire that not only was he an amazing writer, but he was an expert lepidopterist (he even classified some butterflies) as well as master chess player, accomplished tennis professional and a teacher. The guy was brilliant and in such a variety of areas. I love his playful prose, his vivid descriptions and his sense of humor. (I did my senior thesis on him.)

Have you always wanted to write or did it come to you "later in life"?
I have always wanted to write. Not only that, but I have always written. I always wrote short stories and poetry as a child. When I was an angst-ridden teen, I holed up in my bedroom and unleashed everything on the page of my blue spiral notebooks. Becoming a writer was inevitable to me.

Author Bio:
Chuck Vance is a pseudonym for a bestselling writer of both adult mysteries and novels for young adults. Vance attended boarding school in Connecticut and graduated from Columbia University. Vance has lived in New York, Moscow, London, Paris and Los Angeles and is frequently on the move.


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Release Day Blitz: Heartbeats by Jenna Kendrick

Title: Heartbeats
Author: Jenna Kendrick
Series: Connections #1
Genre: M/M Romance
Release Date: March 13, 2018
Cover Design: Dianne at Lyrical Lines
Summary:
When Andrew Palmer and his husband decide to expand their family, they use a surrogate to carry their baby. On the day they get the happy news they're expecting, Andrew is blindsided when Mason asks him for a divorce and moves out, taking their daughter with him. Instead of counting down the days until the twins' birth with his partner, Andrew's fighting for every moment of time with his daughter and readying himself to become a single father.

Orphaned at a young age, Bradley Stern has always wanted a family to call his own. He’s done everything possible in preparation to become a single father including finding a surrogate to carry his child. Knowing he’s going to have two babies to care for means double the love, and he can hardly wait the last few months for his twins to be born.

When Andrew and Bradley each get a call about a tragic car accident and premature delivery, they discover their surrogate has promised the twins to both of them. As they wait for paternity results and watch the babies struggle to survive, they turn to each other for comfort. Only one man will walk away with what both want most, but now he'll also take the other man's heart, as well.


“Surely you can tell me something. How are my babies?” Bradley raked his fingers through his hair, barely resisting pulling it out by the handful. No telling what it looked like, but he left it firmly attached to his scalp.

“Mr. Stern, as I’ve already said, someone will be out for you shortly.” The NICU nurse’s voice straddled a fine line between professional courtesy and annoyance. “Now, are you going to wait patiently, or do I have to ask security to escort you out of the hospital?” As he turned away, the glass divider between the info desk and the waiting area rattled with more force than the last time he’d demanded answers. Too bad, because he wasn’t budging until he knew what was happening to his twins and their surrogate.

For all that the hospital had tried to create a welcoming environment, the empty waiting room stank of lost hopes, stale coffee, and the astringent smell that lingered in all hospitals. If he sat, he’d be swallowed up by the despondency that clung to the chairs. Instead, he walked. Fourteen steps up the hall, fourteen steps back, just far enough for it to be considered pacing and not hovering. He’d practically worn a trench into the hardwood floor. It’d been hours already—he glanced at his watch—no, more like twenty minutes. No wonder the staff was losing patience. Time was standing still.

His mouth opened in an overly loud yawn that had him looking right and left with embarrassment, but it was too early for anyone other than hospital staff to be milling about. The inscrutable nurse didn’t even look up from her computer screen.

The adrenaline rush from racing to get here battled with the exhaustion of having been awake for over twenty-four hours. After a long week in New York City filled with frustrating meetings and high-profile events with Uncle Richard and his merry band of blowhards, he’d been unable to stand one more night there. Every car horn and squeal of brakes from the street below set him on edge, and come morning, Richard would have one more piece of business, one more person he needed to meet. Any excuse to keep him nearby and try to wear him down. He’d just wanted to get home to his mountain, treacherous roads in the middle of the night be damned, and he’d called down for his Tesla Roadster before he so much as loosened his tie. Halfway to Egremont, he’d received the call that had him veering east to Springfield.

The same refrain haunted him as it had the rest of the drive. I’m not ready. I’m not ready. Never mind that this was the culmination of a long-held dream. Making lists of baby supplies and everything he needed to decorate the nursery was a far cry from having checked so much as a single item off said lists. But none of that was important right now. He’d deal with the nursery and all the rest once he knew his babies were well.

They’re not ready, either. He’d been reading about fetal development week-by-week throughout the pregnancy, not that he could recall a single useful fact right now. Fingernails and blinking—the parts he’d been so excited about a couple days ago—suddenly took a back seat to lung development. He swallowed the knot in his throat and reached into his pocket. No. Already a hair’s breadth from losing his shit, Googling worst-case scenarios wouldn’t help him avoid being kicked out of the hospital for causing a disturbance.

Stomping feet and labored breaths caught his attention as two men ran down the hall. One pointed at the chairs, then approached the nurse’s station, quietly giving his name. His companion, jacket wide open and sweatshirt clearly inside-out, looked around the area wide-eyed before lurching across the hall to the restroom.

“Did you see where my brother went? A little bit taller, a lot less handsome?”

There was no reply from the nurse. Bradley glanced over to see the man staring back at him quizzically. He pointed at the bathroom just as the door opened.

The brother was indeed taller, by at least a few inches. But his dark blond hair, bright blue eyes, and muscles for days rendered him a hundred times sexier than the first guy.

Judging from the greenish cast to his skin, he was also either hungover or sick. Bradley stepped away in distaste, leaving the other men to melt into the chairs of despair while he resumed pacing. Fourteen steps up the hall. Turn. Five, six, seven—

The door to the unit opened. “Who’s here for the Penn twins?”

—Eight, nine. Wait. Penn.

Bradley hurried over to the man in bright blue scrubs. The surgical mask tucked under his chin pulled his ears forward, giving him a slightly elfin appearance. Or maybe lack of sleep and stress were making Bradley as fanciful as the giraffes and elephants painted on the walls.

The nurse gave Bradley a welcoming smile. “You the new dads?”

Bradley looked to his right, only then noticing the tall guy had also approached.

“Oh, we’re not together,” he said. Being together with someone wasn’t in the cards for him. His heart was taking a big enough risk letting children in, much less a partner.

“We ask that only parents come into the unit for the first visit. Which one of you is the father?” He looked expectantly between the two men.

“I am,” they both replied at the same time.

Author Bio:
Jenna Kendrick writes contemporary, new adult, and paranormal romance about smart guys with a propensity for snark. Jenna went to a small college in the woods of Western Massachusetts, where she alternated between bare feet and hiking boots and used dining hall trays as a mode of transportation in the winter. She fell in love with creative writing after writing a satirical essay to get out of yet another literary analysis assignment. Unable to choose a coast or climate zone, she bounced around the country before settling in Upstate New York. She lives with her husband and several furry creatives, some of whom think of her desk as their own.


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Cover Reveal: Blood Bathory - Like the Night by Ari McKay

Title: Blood Bathory - Like the Night
Author: Ari McKay
Series: The Guardians of Gaia #1
Genre: M/M Romance, Paranormal
Expected Release Date: April 9, 2018
Cover Design: Lou Harper @ Cover Affairs
Summary:
You can run…

After losing his younger sister to cancer, fashion photographer Evan St. John tries to outrun his pain, leaving New York for the excitement of Paris. His talent and striking good looks bring him to the attention of Elizabeth Nadasdy, the elegant and powerful owner of House of Nadasdy. Evan is thrilled at the opportunity to work for such a prestigious designer, but he soon discovers Elizabeth wants more than his talent. Beneath the beautiful mask she presents to the world lurks the evil of a vampire whose lust for beauty is surpassed only by her thirst for blood.

Evan’s life is shattered when Elizabeth turns him into one of her “children.” Unable to bear what he has become, he flees to New York to find his best friend, police officer Will Trask. The one person who might be able to help him.

But you can’t hide…

Together, Evan and Will find themselves drawn deeper into a strange world they never knew existed. Standing against the vampires are the theriomorphs, shapeshifters who serve as the guardians of Gaia, the embodiment of all life on earth. Though sworn to eradicate every vampire, Marielle Du Lac, the leader of the theriomorphs, offers them a bargain. If they help bring down Elizabeth, her people will try to find a way to restore Evan to life.

Caught up in an ancient war between two powerful supernatural forces, Evan and Will must choose sides, because if they are to have any chance of a future together, they must destroy Elizabeth Nadasdy before she destroys them.

Author Bio:
Ari McKay is the professional pseudonym for Arionrhod and McKay, who collaborate on original m/m fiction. They began writing together in 2004 and finished their first original full length novel in 2011. Recently, they’ve begun collaborating on designing and creating costumes to wear and compete in at Sci Fi conventions, and they share a love of yarn and cake.

Arionrhod is an avid costumer, knitter, and all-around craft fiend, as well as a professional systems engineer. Mother of two human children and two dachshunds who think they are human, she is a voracious reader with wildly eclectic tastes, devouring romance novels, military science fiction, horror stories and Shakespeare with equal glee. She is currently preparing for the zombie apocalypse.

McKay is an English teacher who has been writing for one reason or another most of her life. She also enjoys knitting, reading, cooking, and playing video games. She has been known to knit in public. Given she has the survival skills of a gnat, she’s relying on Arionrhod to help her survive the zombie apocalypse.


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