#MustRead: Some Sort of Crazy by Melanie Harlow

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When a psychic tells Natalie Nixon her life is about to be upended by a mysterious stranger, she laughs it off. After all, she has everything she’s ever wanted—a successful bakery, the perfect boyfriend, and the keys to her dream house.

Who could possibly make her want to throw all that away?

Then Miles Haas comes back to town.

But he’s no stranger—they’ve known each other since high school. Plus, he’s only around for the summer, he’s still a shameless playboy, and he makes a living writing articles for a men’s magazine with titles like ‘Should You Bang the Boss’s Daughter? A Flowchart’ and ‘Butt Stuff for Beginners: A Field Guide.’

He’s not the man of her dreams, and she’s not about to abandon everything she’s worked so hard for just for a little fun. Except he makes her laugh like no one else, smells like heaven, and wears panty-melting glasses.


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Some Sort of Crazy Teaser





The light was off in my room when I returned, and I could barely make out her shape under the blanket. Leaving my glasses on the bedside table, I slid between the sheets, careful to stay on my side. When was the last time a woman slept in my bed without orgasms being involved? I couldn’t think of one time, actually. I didn’t even know what to do with myself. Continue reading

Giveaway & Excerpt: The Rogue Not Taken by Sarah MacLean

News Flash:  Announcing a sublime – and scandalously wonderful – new series from New York Times, USA Today and Washington Post bestselling author Sarah MacLean!

rogue not taken mm cLady Sophie’s Society Splash
When Sophie, the least interesting of the Talbot sisters, lands her philandering brother-in-law backside-first in a goldfish pond in front of all society, she becomes the target of very public aristocratic scorn. Her only choice is to flee London, vowing to start a new life far from the aristocracy. Unfortunately, the carriage in which she stows away isn’t saving her from ruin . . . it’s filled with it.

Rogue’s Reign of Ravishment!
Kingscote, “King,” the Marquess of Eversley, has never met a woman he couldn’t charm, resulting in a reputation far worse than the truth, a general sense that he’s more pretty face than proper gentleman, and an irate summons home to the Scottish border. When King discovers stowaway Sophie, however, the journey becomes anything but boring.

War? Or More?
He thinks she’s trying to trick him into marriage. She wouldn’t have him if he were the last man on earth. But carriages bring close quarters, dark secrets, and unbearable temptation, making opposites altogether too attractive . . .


A chance to win a very exclusive early bound manuscript of THE ROGUE NOT TAKEN,

along with some artisanal honey. Yum!   Click Here to Enter!


Road Taken Map

designed by Amy Solomon

Great North Road Map Reveal: Destinations and excerpts from novel:

Stop #7: “Lyne Castle”

Author Commentary:

The Country seat of the Dukes of Lyne, Lyne Castle is the childhood home of Kingscote, Marquess of Eversley, who left home at eighteen after a terrible tragedy and never returned. Summoned home by his ailing father, King finally returns–with the unexpected addition of Lady Sophie Talbot, irritating and somehow irresistible. The estate boasts one of the most complicated labyrinths in Britain…where King and Sophie find solace, and heartbreak, and each other.

Sophie would want love. She’d want it pure and unfettered, given freely, along with all its trappings. She’d want the marriage and children and happiness and prom- ise that came with it.

King could see it, the life she wanted. The line of little girls, blue-eyed and brown-haired, in love with books and strawberry tarts. For a moment, he imagined them smiling at him the way their mother did, filled with happiness and hope.

For a moment, he let himself believe he might be able to give it to her.

But she would want love, and he would never be able to give it.

He didn’t have it to give anymore. And those children, they would never be his.

He set her down on the edge of the fountain, coming to his knees, as though she was Ariadne and he the Minotaur, worshipping at her feet, adoring her even as he knew she could not survive in the labyrinth, and he could not survive beyond it.

“Tell me about last night,” he said softly, looking up at her, his hands at the hem of her skirts.

“What—” She caught her breath as his fingers explored the skin of her ankles. “What about it?”

“I hated it,” he said. “I hated stopping.”

She pressed her lips into a thin, straight line. “I hated that you stopped.”

His hands were beneath her skirts, pushing them back, farther and farther, up and over her knees. He pressed his lips to the inside of her knee, swirling his tongue there, loving the little gasp of surprised pleasure that came at the touch.

“I hate that I will have to stop today, as well.”


maclean.authorThe author aroused immediate interest when she announced this high-concept affair: “I’m thrilled to announce my next project — the Scandal & Scoundrel series, which I pitched to my editor as ‘Old School TMZ,’” says MacLean.  “It’s modern celebrity gossip with a pre-Victorian twist. Basically, this is my way of convincing my husband that all those glossy magazines in our house are ‘work necessities.’

The first novel in the series, THE ROGUE NOT TAKEN (Avon Books; ISBN 9780062379412; eISBN 9780062379399; on-sale12/29/15)  is a riff on a certain elevator incident made famous at a Met gala several years ago.  But in MacLean’s imagination, the scurrilous turns absolutely sensational, as a ballroom imbroglio sets off a very heated carriage journey along the Great North Road.  It’s a long way from London to Scotland…you would be quite amazed at how much drama can ensue between a seemingly ill-matched duo on such a wild ride!

Review & $25 Giveaway: Dreamscape: Saving Alex by Kirstin Pulioff

dreamscape-saving-alex-banner-300x130Dreamscape: Saving Alex by Kirstin Pulioff

Genre: YA Contemporary Fantasy     Published April 15th, 2015

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Dreamscape Saving AlexSixteen-year-old Alexis Stone is used to getting away from life’s frustration with Dreamscape, a video game she’s loved since childhood. As her family prepares to move, a sleepy night of gaming pulls her into the world like never before.

Trapped in Dreamscape’s realm, Alex is about to learn that being a hero has consequences… and this time, the stakes are deadly. Will helping the rebellion cost her everything she knows and loves? Or will she betray them to save her own life?


Win a $25 gift card to Amazon!  Click Here to Enter!


I cracked my knuckles and tightened my ponytail. It was time to play the game.

A parade of puff birds that had inched closer to me with each repetition of the song were now within reach. I barely recognized them. On screen, they were nothing but rolling yellow balls. Here, they reminded me of wobbling puffer fish with needle-tipped feathers and inflated bodies. The rhythmic stabbing of their spiked beaks into the ground interrupted their slow walk. I saw a bird with a bloody beak and pulled my feet in, covering the fresh wound on top of my foot.

“Stupid bird,” I mumbled, standing and brushing the dirt off myself as I watched the strange creatures. They moved in a pattern, shuffling from the edge of the forest towards the field to my left.

I started a countdown—three, two, one, jump.

As I landed, a shrill scream echoed beneath me. The bones of the bird crushed easily, like cracking knuckles, when I flattened its body to the ground. A pool of red surrounded me, turning the golden feathers dark. I shrieked and jumped back, flailing my arms until I hit a tree. The rough bark grabbed at my hair and scratched my back. The other birds squawked a warning before puffing into balls and rolling away down the hill. I covered my hurt hand and looked around nervously.

This wasn’t real, this was a game; it couldn’t be real. But the knot in my stomach and tears falling down my cheeks told me otherwise. This was real, too real. I was losing it.

Only a few minutes in, and I had killed an innocent creature. I felt sick. Did I really expect it to burst into a puff of feathers, disappear, and deposit golden coins in my pockets like in the game?

I looked over at the lifeless bird with the sick feeling of guilt in my chest. How was I going to survive in this world? I thought about the most dangerous levels. Any advantage I’d thought I had just disappeared.

This is a fun-filled, action packed, YA fantasy tale about a girl who enters the world of her favorite childhood video game.  Readers join Alexis on her journey: from the accidental stumble into an alternate world to the quest she must complete to return home.
I liked the characters, setting, and plot; and I thought it was interesting that despite knowing Dreamscape so well, she was very much out of her element while working her way through the game. Once she got over the shock of it all, she got down to work.  It soon became evident, however, the video game was only a pixelated version of this other world, and beating the game would be much more difficult than she hoped.
Alex changes on her journey.  When we first meet her, she is a bit of a bratty teen, disappointed with her family’s impending move away from school, friends, and her high school crush.  It is fun to see this selfish girl evolve into the hero of the game.  She must think of others and sacrifice what she holds dear to reach her goal.  Along the way, she meets Arrow.  He is another example of unexpected curve balls in the game, and the action really picks up once he joins the adventure.
This is a great story for pre-teen and teenage readers.  The ending was a bit abrupt for my taste, but overall it is an entertaining, original plot and a very well-written story. – kris
Kirstin PulioffKirstin Pulioff is a storyteller at heart. Born and raised in Southern California, she moved to the Pacific Northwest to follow her dreams and graduated from Oregon State University (Go Beavs!) with a degree in Forest Management. Happily married and a mother of two, she lives in the foothills of Colorado. When she’s not writing an adventure, she’s busy living one.She loves to hear from readers and fans.
Please connect with her on her website: www.kirstinpulioff.com

New Release: Bound by Prophecy by Stormy Smith

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bound coverAmelia Bradbury is finally free from Queen Julia and Cresthaven, but she isn’t safe yet. The Keeper power runs rampant inside her and it will take an ultimate act of selflessness to contain the darkness that threatens Amelia’s sanity and the future of the Immortal race.

Aidan Montgomery refuses to give up on Amelia. Once she’s rescued from the Keeper’s hold, he intends to prove his love is more than a side effect of the prophecy, even if doing so leads him away from his pack and on a journey that will irrevocably change them both.

When the past and the present collide and the shocking origin of the Immortals is revealed, Amelia and Aidan are forced back to Cresthaven to end a war that never should have started.


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the Bound Series?  

Bound by Duty is FREE!

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duty coverAmelia grew up in a world of half-truths. She knows she’s an Elder, but has no idea what that means. Her father reminds her daily that she must maintain control, but he refuses to explain why. Even worse, she’s betrothed to the prince of the Immortals and doesn’t even know his name.

Finally breaking free to live a few normal years at a community college, the last thing Amelia expects is to find her best friend in a cheeky southern girl, or fall for a self-assured human who sees her for who she is, not what she will become.

As she learns more about herself, Amelia realizes the line between love and duty is a thin one. As her power continues to increase exponentially and her questions are slowly answered, Amelia must make the ultimate choice. The question is, will her head win the battle, or her heart?


Excerpt & Giveaway: The Urban Boys by K.N. Smith

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the urban boys

Genre/ Age Group: Young Adult Fiction (Action-Adventure w/ elements of Paranormal), 12+


“If you’re looking for an action-packed page-turner, look no further than The Urban Boys. This modern-day tale of good vs. evil captivated my imagination from start to finish. You won’t be able to put the book down. You’ll be mesmerized!” Ingrid Hart, Mountain View, CA

“A must read!!! An absolutely riveting story about the struggle between good and evil. Five young men experience a surprising, somewhat whimsical, yet very dangerous journey into a dark world from which they must emerge victorious. A dark stranger leads the way. The first in a series, which will have you on the edge of your seat. Amazing!” T. Wilson, Elk Grove, CA

“The Urban Boys took me up and down the most exciting, twisty, curvy roads on the planet. This is truly an adventure filled novel that gets more exciting as the pages turn. The dynamics between the boys gets more complicated as the Dark Stranger comes onto the scene. Good vs. evil, amazing fight scenes, Alina and her nunchucks, the dreaded Druth, dealing with one’s fate … it’s all there! Not only is this the best read of the season, but the emotion and inspiration felt by the reader makes The Urban Boys one lasting and unforgettable story!” Carl Jones, Carmichael, CA

(First in a series) Five boys, a dark stranger, a fearless girl, vicious thugs, and the evil Druth. A suspenseful incident in a forbidden preserve. A mysterious energy source heightens the boys’ senses to extreme levels. Sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell become hypersensitive gifts that forever change the world. On a mission to root out evil, tension and furious battles confront the boys at every turn, but they must embrace their fate. Overview: The story’s small town of Danville Heights, a carefully crafted universe, contrasts with the dark, gloomy town of Sandry Lake, where evil abounds. Upon the boys’ mysterious incident with the energy source, they’re instinctively called to Sandry Lake to fight evil. Their senses guide them each time. However, secrecy about their mission, furious battles with evil thugs, extreme fatigue, and stress and pressure soon overwhelm the boys, but they must find a way to embrace their fate. A lurking, dark stranger seems to know their plight, and a strikingly beautiful, fearless girl lends way to heightened confusion. Shocking details about these two characters, and the evil antagonist, the dreaded Druth, twist the story even further. Despite tension and fierce battles, will the boys hold it together long enough to fulfill their destiny? Intriguing, intelligent, and full of action, The Urban Boys offers a memorable, emotion-packed, thrilling ride for all audiences. Get ready for the twisting and grinding of this adventure story, which artfully integrates cinematic-level action in an edge-of-your-seat narrative for young and mature readers alike!


Up for Grabs: (1) $25 Amazon Gift Card, (2) signed copies of The Urban Boys

and (3) e-copies of The Urban Boys  Click here to enter: a Rafflecopter giveaway


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kn smith

K.N. Smith is an American author and passionate advocate of childhood and family literacy programs throughout the world. She continues to inspire students of all ages to reach their highest potential in their literary and educational pursuits. An established non-fiction writer, Smith chose the teen fiction genre as a way to enhance her daughters’ (then) high school literary experience, and to engage other youth in literacy development. Her creative literary flair offers young and mature readers central themes of loyalty, responsibility, honesty, fear, and triumph. As a result, scenes become artfully integrated with cinematic-level action and high drama. Her stories twist, turn, and grind through elements of science-fiction and action-adventure in diverse, exciting, edge-of-your-seat narratives. As an ardent supporter of youth and family literacy programs across the globe, she states, “My hope is that The Urban Boys will spark imagination in a wide variety of readers while elevating global literacy efforts. It’s important that we have diverse families of readers for generations to come.” K.N. Smith has over twenty years experience in writing, communications, and creative design. She lives with her family in California.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorknsmith?_rdr=p

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14431555.K_N_Smith

Twitter: @knsmith_author



HUGE, CURVY LEAVES BEAUTIFULLY ARRANGED WITHIN THE PRESERVE offered the perfect backdrop for a midnight encounter between two friends who happened to be unequal in their mindsets as well as in their needs to control. Curiously, a beautiful, black midnight lent air and mystery to the setting of which each was familiar. But almost immediately the conversation went awry, and perhaps on purpose.

You don’t think I’m capable of leading us in the right direction, do you? We can’t stay here going nowhere, and I’ve chosen you to go with me. We need to stay together!” said an imposing Joaquin Grayson as he squeezed the life out of Ross Dawson’s arm. “We’ve been doing fine for almost a year. Why you want to cut out now?”

We’ve been going back and forth from here to there and everything’s alright, I guess,” said eighteen year old Ross. “But you’ve changed. It’s not the same. It’s like I don’t even know you anymore. Man, why do you need so much power?”

For the first time, the mellow, demure Ross trusted himself to speak up, to question the mounting dissention clouding their friendship. He remembered that only a short time ago a youthful adventure took place in this forbidden milieu. A place from where tales of strange happenings, mysterious noises, and unsolved disappearances emerged, or so it was said.

And during that youthful adventure within the preserve, when confronted by that mysterious accident, they all changed, and then he changed.

Somehow, the misunderstood, glowing energy that dripped from those huge leaves caused a solo ambition. And it had only gotten started on a dangerous course that would be littered with intense brutality checkered with misguided emotion and overtones of force and power – a deadly combination anxiously waiting in the wings.

As a result of this line of questioning, and while wondering what would happen to Ross’ gift, Joaquin set his intention. Only nineteen years old, yet extremely demanding, he knew he would not be able to turn back. He let go of Ross’ arm, turned away, and ran his slender fingers through his thick, shoulder length, medium brown hair.

At just under six feet, his lean yet muscular frame worked diligently to contain the rising tension within, being careful not to give any indication of his next move. A black tank top tightly hugged his chest to reveal lightly tanned skin that perfectly harmonized with his long, uneven hair.

And with his hair still clutched in his hand, he closed his eyes and breathed deeply as he listened for Ross’ movements. Pacing a little, he rationalized that he was the only adequate soul who could orchestrate and command a new way of life. Surely, a concoction of domination that would ultimately gratify only himself.

And in the absence of even a hint of an exchange, Joaquin spun around and lunged at Ross, grabbed him by the throat, and knocked him down. With dry, brittle leaves and debris suddenly thrust upward, the two were covered in a dark, hazy hell as they pursued a violent struggle for what seemed like an eternity.

As he gained his footing, Ross shot back with a punch to Joaquin’s head followed by several body punches. Joaquin stumbled backward and fell giving Ross those precious, few seconds required for escape.

With speed as the distinguishing factor that thrust him from walking to running, the shorter, 5-foot-8 Ross frantically stretched his quivering legs through any physical or mental process he could assemble. His rich, brown skin absorbed a rush of pulsating adrenaline. He tried to ignore his thunderous heartbeat, which was now thumping clear to his ears, to concentrate on any and every path that would lead him out of the preserve and as far away as possible.

With his baseball cap blown to the wind, his short, curly hair openly embraced the moment, which was littered with deep panic and a singular appreciation for survival.

The unfortunate turn of events that took place only minutes earlier were actually the accumulation of countless episodes in which Joaquin expressed his need to control … any and every thing. This sudden, violent spree was simply the smoky glow at the end of a dark tunnel, and they had ventured across the breaking point inside this familiar, gloriously lush landscape.

At that very same moment on the other side of the preserve, out where they were not supposed to be, Della Sato and Juson Yamada, both in their early twenties, examined the stars on what would be the defining night of their young lives.

Although somewhat disturbing tales had surrounded the mystery of the forest for generations, it offered a secret privacy unavailable in their everyday lives. They set foot within looking for the perfect place to nestle. Walking and talking, all was quiet and peaceful just as they had imagined.

Now heavy on his heels, Joaquin gained speed and caught up with Ross running up from behind, and he wrapped his arm tightly around Ross’ neck. His long, brown hair whipped and swung, practically covering both of them. Unable to break free, Ross elbowed him in the ribs and Joaquin finally let go. They exchanged a flurry of punches, jabs, and kicks that set the bruising process in motion.

Although fatigue was setting in, Ross somehow found the strength to jump high circling backward. He landed a ferocious blow to Joaquin’s back that knocked him down yet again. He frantically resumed his search for a way out, but Joaquin took only moments to compose his expressionless self, and the pursuit had fallen hopelessly back on track, and with furious traction.

With an assist from the moonlight, the curvaceous appeal of those big, wavy, round leaves with their lime, jade, and avocado tones mesmerized Della and Juson. Now resting in a shallow place, Juson looked deep into Della’s almond eyes as he stroked her straight, black hair, and told her what she meant to him.

You know we’ll be married someday. It’s in the cards,” he laughed. “No, seriously, I really love you.”

I love you too,” said Della.

His solid, athletic frame meshed with her delicate figure. And being completely hidden behind a massive, beautiful leaf, their passion spilled over in total privacy.

They drew in close and kissed with animated fervor.

But suddenly, the sickening roar of the brawl between the two friends inched closer and closer to Della and Juson. He put his hand over Della’s mouth and listened cautiously to determine the source of the fracas. He squinted his eyes and shook his head to signal the need for silence as they waited it out.

With no verbal exchange between the unseen individuals, it was impossible to conclude the situation. Juson peeked out for a split second and saw a brutal fight taking place between what looked like two men.

Joaquin landed multiple blows upon Ross’ head and took a few in return, and they continued fighting without pause. And as Joaquin charged forward, Ross was pushed onto a tree where a low, dry, brittle branch met his torso. The branch crashed to the ground leaving Ross with a serious wound.

The thunderous thud whipped the leaf covering Della and Juson, but it quickly snapped back in place. And when it did, Ross could be heard stumbling backward and over the branch. He tripped and fell to the ground landing only inches from Della and Juson. Joaquin pounced upon Ross choking him as he punched him in the face.

Still hidden, and with that huge, curvy leaf now pressing against Della and Juson, Joaquin wrapped his hands tightly around Ross’ neck. He pressed his full weight into the evil action and waited for the end to arrive. He was entirely exhausted, and when it was over, he fell beside Ross and stayed there for a few minutes while the forest absorbed this malicious, vile act intentionally choreographed by Joaquin.

Ross’ empty, wide open eyes expressed the fear of the moment, or perhaps the horror of what he feared he was destined to face. Joaquin stood up and let out painful moans as he rubbed his eyes, which were suddenly burning. Unable to see clearly, he stumbled out of the forest and into the night going anywhere it would take him. With his eyes burning under a furious, deep red, he would remain in this agonizing condition for three, long days.

Completely terrified, Della and Juson were clear on what just happened, but had no choice but to exact more patience than they could have imagined would ever be needed in their lifetimes. As though they were totally blindfolded, and not knowing who it was, there was no reference point for this deadly, vicious act.

And as the night progressed, they found the moment to make their move. In disbelief, they ran home and enshrined this secret in their hearts under that striking, glowing moonlight on the most fateful night of their young lives.

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Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: Return Once More by Trisha Leigh

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return once more

Genre: YA science fiction (time travel romance)

If you could learn the identity of your one true love—even though you will never meet— would you?

Years have passed since refugees from a ruined earth took to space, eventually settling a new system of planets. Science has not only made the leaps necessary to allow time travel, but the process engineered a strange side effect—predicting your one true love.

If you could save your one true love from an untimely death, would you be able to resist?

Sixteen-year-old Kaia Vespasian is an apprentice to the Historians—a group charged with using time travel to document the triumphs and failures of the past—and she can’t resist a peek at her long-dead soul mate in Ancient Egypt. Before she knows it, she’s broken every rule in the book, and the consequences of getting caught could destroy more than just her new romance.

Or would you have the strength to watch him die?

But when Kaia notices a fellow classmate snooping around in a time where he doesn’t belong, she suspects he has a secret of his own—and the conspiracy she uncovers could threaten the entire universe. If her experience has taught her anything, to changing history means facing the consequences. The Historians trained her to observe and record the past, but Kaia never guessed she might have to protect it— in a race across time to save her only chance at a future.


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(3) $10 Amazon gift cards + Return Once More swag Open Internationally.
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A man stepped forward, draped in the same off-white, purple-striped toga as the rest of the room. A senator of Rome, a nobleman. My brainstem tat spit out the answer into my mind before the question fully formed—Tillius Cimber.

My heart climbed into my throat, lungs struggling with oxygen. It was happening.

“You were going to consider my petition to return my brother from exile,” he said, too loudly. The words vibrated on the taught strands of anxiety in the air, bounding off the stone walls and crashing into my ears, easily translated by my tattoo.

It was hard not to wince, but that would shake my face. I’d been distracted enough today, wandering into the portico, and my tendency to be sidetracked did not endear me to the overseers or our Elders. My family had endured enough disgrace in the past few years without my adding to it by being a space cadet. I was two Level-1 sanctions away from the Elders notifying my parents. After what happened with my brother, they might die from shame.

“I’m still considering it,” Caesar replied, his tone dismissive.

My lungs ached with unspent air. They struggled to call out, to warn him. Policy forbade any interaction, of course, and the brainstem tat did more than provide me with handy dandy information—it insisted I follow contemporary custom. It saved me a ton of studying but the downside meant occasionally losing control of my own limbs. It had forced me into an absurd curtsey on more than one occasion, once nearly toppling my giant wig right onto Marie Antoinette’s feet at a ball.

There was no way to change the scene that began to unfold in front of us, anyway. No way to nudge it a different direction without setting off unknown effects that might reach all the way to Genesis in 2560. I squeezed Analeigh’s hand tighter as Caesar shook off Cimber.

He barely took a step before another senator, Casca, stabbed him square in the neck, the blade sinking all the way to the hilt.

The almost comical surprise on his face slid quickly toward resignation as Brutus attacked him next, his blade strong and true as it sunk into his old friend’s heart. The betrayal in Caesar’s eyes sent a sizzling chill down my spine but no words passed his lips. He did not single Brutus out as more important than the others, despite the infamous line in Shakespeare’s version of these tragic events.

In fact, though he struggled and fought, Gaius Julius Caesar spoke not one more word as nearly sixty grown men surrounded him with daggers, each intent on taking their part of the blame—or the credit—by plunging their own weapon into flesh.

Sarah’s face turned pale, chalky, as the scene descended into a melee. Men stabbed each other instead of their target. Their leather shoes slipped in crimson puddles dotting the floor, more than one of them slipped, and Caesear disappeared inside a crowd of thrusting blades. The coppery, slick odor of spilled blood clogged the air, coated my tongue. I swallowed, and it stuck to my throat.

It seemed like it went on forever, but in reality, he bled out in mere minutes. Just a man, after all. Not a god.

review1I am a huge history fan, so this book had me from the get go: in Chapter One, a group of students travel back in time to observe the assassination of Julius Caesar.  The historians-in-training take their eyewitness accounts from the “Earth Before” to their time (the New Era) and place (the planet Sanchi) for analysis.

I love everything about how the author crafted this: the students are outfitted with invisible eyeglasses that stream information, bio data ports that command cultural etiquette, and the ability to speak to each other in non-verbal ways.  These technological marvels allow for teenage time travelers to drop into any time or place and complete their assignments without being noticed by the people they are observing.  Who they study and why makes for an incredible, entertaining plot.

Then there are the students themselves: Kaia, Sarah and Analeigh are friends, roommates, and studying to be Historians. Return Once More centers around seventeen year old- Kaia and how she comes of age as a time traveler.  There is so much to her story, and I hate to spoil any of it.  The story of her world, her assignments, her discoveries and her family is an exciting adventure.  All of this is anchored on the revelation that her True, the person best suited to love and compliment her, lived in Ancient Egypt.  There are severe consequences for interacting with people in the past – even the smallest change in history can affect every generation that follows.  With advanced technology and time travel at her disposal, Kaia wants to meet her soulmate.  But should she?

There is a lot going on in this book, and all of it is great.  Sci-fi time travel, historical shout-outs, star crossed love, secret assignments, rebellious outcasts – all against a backdrop of a new world trying to avoid the problems that plagued the Earth Before: overpopulation, environmental destruction, etc.   The author does an incredible job of weaving all the details, action, and surprises in an entertaining way.  It becomes evident in the final few chapters that the story will continue after this book ends – and I cannot wait to see what happens next. – kris

 Trisha Leigh is a product of the Midwest, which means it’s pop, not soda, garage sales, not tag sales, and you guys as opposed to y’all. Most of the time. She’s been writing seriously for five years now, and has published 4 young adult novels and 4 new adult novels (under her pen name Lyla Payne). Her favorite things, in no particular order, include: reading, Game of Thrones, Hershey’s kisses, reading, her dogs (Yoda and Jilly), summer, movies, reading, Jude Law, coffee, and rewatching WB series from the 90’s-00’s.

Her family is made up of farmers and/or almost rock stars from Iowa, people who are numerous, loud, full of love–the kind of people that make the world a better place. Trisha tries her best to honor them, and the lessons they’ve taught, through characters and stories–made up, of course, but true enough in their way.

Trisha is the author of THE LAST YEAR series and the WHITMAN UNIVERSITY books. She’s represented by Kathleen Rushall at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.

To learn more about Trisha Leigh, please visit her at trishaleigh.com.

If you enjoy New Adult books or a good contemporary romance, please check out my pen name, Lyla Payne!
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Excerpt & Giveaway: English Ivy by Betsy Talbot

Eglish Ivy BT Banner Finally, contemporary romance for women over forty!

English Ivy flat coverAfter a solid career as an economist working at the US Embassy in London, forty-two-year-old American Ivy Cross is ready to jump to the bigger paycheck of the private sector and finally make time for a relationship.

Madrid-based tech superstar Ruben Alegre both infuriates and intoxicates her, and if he only lived closer she’d consider risking her heart.

When the opportunity for an incredible new job in Berlin arrives in the form of sexy Christof Brandt, she wonders if the offer is too good to be true. Her Late Bloomer friends are split down the middle, offering support but no clear decision.

Will she find a future with Ruben? Start a new life in hip and gritty Berlin?

There are no easy answers, but Ivy can’t deny that her life is about to change in a very big way.


Ivy mentally ran through the plan one more time as the Secretary of State gave the speech. First, she’d fake an upset stomach to her colleague Ben, touching her abdomen and nodding gravely before slipping quietly out the door. Then a firm nod to the Secret Service agents situated outside, secure in her clearance badge as a senior US Embassy employee to move freely about the building.


The carpet would muffle the sound of her high heels as she quickly walked down the empty hallway, and then she’d slip into her office and close the door. The press conference was mandatory for all staff, so Ivy would have the entire building to herself. But all she’d need was in her office. A few quick strokes to enter her password on her laptop, and then she would open the draft of the email she’d been perfecting for weeks. One click to send.


Ivy would take one last look around the office she’d occupied for the last five years, half her total stay in London— the functional, government-issued desk covered with manila folders; the dark blue carpet whose only selling point was the ability to hide stains; and the stand by the door, home to the umbrella she carried to work most days.


She’d shrug on her trench coat, wrap her Hermès scarf movie-star style around her long red hair, and take the elevator down to the lobby. At the top of the steps outside, she would pause, taking in this view for one last time—Grosvenor Square ahead with Dwight D. Eisenhower’s statue greeting visitors, a giant gold eagle above her head proclaiming demurely that the Embassy belonged to the United States.


One final goodbye to Sal and Chester, the guards at the gate, and Ivy would be free. Walking away from Hyde Park, she’d look up into the uncommonly sunny sky, cover her sparkling green eyes with oversized sunglasses, and head for the Piccadilly Circus tube station. An hour later she’d emerge at Heathrow Airport.


Once on board, Ivy would settle into first class, order a glass of champagne from the flight attendant, and look out the window into the fading daylight sky as the plane taxied down the runway full speed ahead to her exciting new life. She wouldn’t even bring a suitcase, leaving all the baggage of her current life behind. Everything from that point forward would be new—new job, new clothes, new country. Maybe even a new man, one who didn’t even own a suit. Her mouth curled into a slow smile, feeling the rush of takeoff. She gripped the arms of her chair just as she would on a real plane.


“You can’t be that excited about trade agreements,” Ben whispered, elbowing her in the side.


Ivy snapped out of her fantasy, instantly transported from champagne in first class to bottled water in the conference room.


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Betsy Talbot headshot -200x300Betsy Talbot is a forty-something traveler and author. When she’s not on the road or penning books about love, adventure, and self-discovery, she is hiking, learning flamenco dancing, and drinking wine in a tiny whitewashed village in Spain with her handsome, long-haired husband Warren. (Watch out, Fabio!)

She is the host of The Quickie Romance Podcast, a weekly show highlighting excerpts from the best romance books in every genre. She’s been told she gives good audio.

Her latest project is The Late Bloomers Series, a five-book romance series about women in their forties. Because women with experience make the best characters—in life and on the page. Download a free Late Bloomers adventure right now at BetsyTalbot.com.

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New Release: Ignited by Liz Long

Lucy might’ve beaten Alex the Chameleon, but the cost of his defeat was too much to bear. After losing a beloved member, Sheffield Donovan temporarily disbands the show. Abandoned by the ringmaster and her friends, Lucy is left to pick up the pieces of their ruined circus – and defend it against those waiting for the opportunity to strike.
During one of these attempts, Lucy learns of Augustus Rivers, the leader of his so-called gifted mafia. When Lucy is offered a chance to infiltrate the Rivers’ household, she jumps at the opportunity to seek vengeance on the mastermind. Augustus instead surprises everyone by proposing that the powerful female Firestarter work for him. It’s everything the Donovan Circus isn’t, an offer Lucy finds more enticing than she ever expected.
With the Donovan Circus in shambles and the gifted world on the cusp of war, can Lucy Sullivan figure out who she’s meant to be? Or will her fire destroy everything they’ve built?
BUY IT ON AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1L0glNs
About the Author
AuthorPhoto.jpgLiz Long is a ridiculously proud graduate of Longwood University with a BA in English. Her inspiration comes from action and thriller genres and she spends entirely too much time watching superhero movies. Her fabulous day job as a social media editor includes writing for a publishing company in Roanoke, VA.
Her first book, Gifted, is the first book in the Donovan Circus series, where superpowers meets the circus. Burned is the second adventure. Her standalone book Witch Hearts, is a story about a serial killer hunting witches for their powers. Her newest book A Reaper Made is an NA Paranormal tale of a Reaper using magic to save her family from demons. All titles are available at Amazon on Kindle and paperback, Barnes & Noble for Nook, and iBooks.

Darkest Dawn by Katlyn Duncan

Darkest Dawn by Katlyn Duncan

Genre: YA Paranormal

Published by: HarperCollins Publishers

Published on September 17th, 2015

Amazon  B&N

One desperate journey for the truth

Returning to Willows Lake eleven years after her mother’s tragic death, Sloane Baker knows she will finally get the answers she needs! She always suspected that there was something more sinister at the heart of the accident that claimed her mother’s life, but a cryptic note could be the key to her past…

Two lives changed forever

The small town has always seemed safe to Brianna Taylor – until a mysterious new girl arrives who looks exactly like Bri! Now everything Bri knew has been thrown into question and Sloane’s arrival has changed the world of Willows Lake forever.

Strange things are happening in Willows Lake. But when they turn deadly, Bri and Sloane must find a way to save each other or risk losing everything they hold dear…

Re-releasing 3 of Christina Dodd’s beloved Governess Brides books


Author Christina Dodd

Author Christina Dodd

I have a confession. In a former life, I was a poor but proud Victorian governess. That’s the only obvious explanation for my obsession with governess stories.

I’ve read and re-read Jane Eyre and always fiercely wanted to be like Jane — proud, independent, clever and the winner of a noble (and rich) man’s heart.

I’ve seen “The Sound of Music” innumerable times and each time I’m swept up in the magnificent scenery, the thrilling music and the story of the poor but feisty governess who captures the noble (and rich) man’s heart.

For me, there’s something eternally enticing about the tale of a woman who endures personal hardship, tames unruly children, and at the same time finds, to her surprise, that she is irresistible to the master of the house. These women are seldom beautiful, not necessarily well-born, and actively resist love’s allure. Yet love in the shape of a tall, dark and autocratic gentleman finds them, captures them, and by the end of the story they are wed to that nobleman and enjoying all the advantages of wealth, privilege and the best sex in the world.

The Governess Brides series begins when Distinguished Academy of Governesses opens its doors to train young women for respectable occupations:

Unfortunately, in RULES OF SURRENDER, Miss Charlotte Dalrumple discovers her first position is to teach Lord Wynter Ruskin, sadly uncivilized by his travels abroad, to take his proper place in society. Hint: it doesn’t go well.

In RULES OF ENGAGEMENT, because of his unrepentantly disreputable ways, the Earl of Kerrich is in trouble with the queen. His solution: hire a governess and obtain an orphan to raise. That will make him appear respectable. Trouble: the kid is charming, he’s falling in love with the unattractive governess … but other than that, what could go wrong? … Oh, so much.

In RULES OF ATTRACTION, Miss Hannah Setterington travels far into the lonely English countryside to take a new position and hears rumors that the master killed his beautiful young wife. Could any situation be worse? Yes, it could, for she knows the rumors are not true … because she is his runaway wife.

With eleven full-length books and one novella, the Governess Brides is my longest-running and most-popular historical series (six of the titles are on the Goodreads List of Best Governess Romances.) So when Avon Books announced they would repackage the books to introduce them to a new audience, and showed me the concepts, those compelling heroes with their direct gazes drew me at once into the stories.  I promptly sat down with the Rules books to reacquaint myself with the characters and stories and — guess what? I ended up reading them from beginning to end and living, laughing and falling in love along with my governess heroines. I’ve always said I write the books I want to read. I hope you read and enjoy the Governess Brides, too!


New York Times bestselling author Christina Dodd builds worlds filled with suspense, romance and adventure and creates the most distinctive characters in fiction today. Her fifty+ novels — suspense, paranormals, and historicals — have been translated into twenty-five languages, won Romance Writers of America’s prestigious Golden Heart and RITA Awards and been called the year’s best by Booklist. Dodd herself has been a clue in the Los Angeles Times crossword puzzle — her mother was totally impressed. With more than twenty-five million of her books in print and eBook, her legions of fans always know that when they pick up a Christina Dodd book, they’ve found, “an absolute thrill ride of a book!”


Enter Christina’s worlds at ChristinaDodd.com and join her free mailing list for book news and sales.


Eonly_9780061795282_CoverThe Rules of Employment for The Distinguished Academy of Governesses: Always remember your station. Be sure to maintain a disciplined schoolroom. And never, ever become too familiar with the master of the house…

Lady Charlotte Dalrumple is known as England’s most proper governess, a woman who has never taken a misstep socially–or romantically. On the surface, she seems perfectly suited to accept the challenge of reforming Lord Wynter Ruskin, sadly uncivilized by his travels abroad.

But Wynter has no desire to be taught manners. He glimpsed an uninhibited beauty hiding beneath Charlotte’s prim exterior, and he’d much rather spend his days–and nights–instructing her in the pleasures of the body and the passions of the heart. But before they can love both must also master the Rules of Surrender.




Rules of Attraction - TEASE FOR REVEALHannah Setterington has decided to retire from governessing and become a paid companion to an elderly lady in the country. After all, she’s looking for a more restful life. She sees years of calm restfulness ahead.

But when she arrives at the country manse at midnight, the place seems awfully gloomy. And all the servants are most improperly whispering about the master. His strange moodiness… his coldness… and the rumor that he killed his wife.

Back straight, our heroine walks staight into the baron’s den, and as she looks at his strong shoulders from behind she instantly knows that he has not killed his wife even though the hairs on her own neck are prickling. He’s totally innocent. How does she know? She is his wife.

And the sparks will be flying. . .



Eonly_9780061793691_CoverLord Kerrich’s position in Queen Victoria’s court is imperiled by his rakish reputation, so he attempts a desperate ruse. He hires Miss Pamela Lockhart to find him an orphan to adopt and give the patina of respectability. However, he quickly finds himself loving the irrepressible child—and seducing her beautiful, wary governess.