Tuesday, 22 January 2019

Favourite Things to Do in the Winter




The topic on Long and Short Reviews' blog hop this week is "favourite things to do in the winter", something I'm very happy to talk about.

Winter, at least the first half, is my favourite time of year because of Christmas. Close to my workplace is a German Christmas market, where I absolutely love to go on lunch breaks to try the potato pancakes and fresh pretzels. But it also embodies everything I love about Christmas – dark nights lit with fairy lights, sparkling decorations and hot mulled wine. It’s a wonderfully Christmassy place.

But what to do for the second half of winter, after Christmas is over and we’re left with cold weather and slush? One of the things I used to like was to visit the skating rink. We often have an open-air one in one of the town squares which was fun to try, even though I’ve never been a great skater – I have no balance.

However, I’ve long since lost the urge to spend ages crashing down onto ice, and so my other favourite thing to do in winter is to sit inside with a steaming mug of hot chocolate and watch the snow fall.

So what do you like to do?

Tuesday, 15 January 2019

What I Would Do With a Million Dollars




I’ve not been able to blog much this past year due to health issues, so I decided this year I would try to blog more – and what better way than by Long and Short Reviews’ blog hop?

This week’s topic is “What I Would Do With a Million Dollars”. For me, that one’s easy. I would travel. While I don’t love getting from A to B (I’m a terrible flyer) I have dozens of places around the world I would love to see. I have always wanted to visit somewhere decadent and hedonistic like the Maldives, or walk the Great Wall of China. Not cheap, but a fascinating experience.

Another thing I would like to do is a cruise. Possibly around Alaska. The thought of standing watching icebergs pass the boat is amazing – and I would always rather be too cold than too hot.
So what would you like to do?

Sunday, 30 September 2018

Spotlight today! "Stalk" by Victoria Danann - out October 21st


Stalk

Victoria Danann



Genre: paranormal romance



Publisher: 7th House, Imprint of Andromeda LLC


Date of Publication:  October 21, 2018

Number of pages: 388
Word Count: 82,000

Cover Artist: Victoria Danann

Tagline: Every breath you take.

Book Description: 

The first coming of chaos. Twelve thousand years ago, members of a more advanced race crossed into our dimension when the barriers temporarily collapsed.

Trapped in our world, the aliens, who were also shifters, built structures that eventually caused the great flood and the sinking of Atlantis.

Some of the alien DNA survived in progeny that carried an untraceable shifter gene, dormant until awakened by mating with a full blooded werewolf.



Excerpt: 
Shortly after the incident, the event came to be known as May Day simply because it occurred on the first of May. The term would be forever after altered to represent the pandemonium that followed the dimension overlap that left so many stranded. It worked because it was a good choice because of disassociating the incident with high emotion.
Some from other places were left here. Some that belonged here had disappeared and, even though every city had a centralized location where loved ones could post photos and leave flowers or burning votives, everybody knew somebody who had lost someone. And the world had been turned on end in the blink of an eye.
The conventional wisdom about withholding news panic-inducing news from the public was bypassed. Cover up was impossible in this case and overnight, everyone knew that we experience reality alongside many others, invisible to us. Everyone also learned conclusively that other species exist in those realities.
One of the species that had been stranded in this dimension were canine shifters, werewolves as they were sometimes called in fantasy. Being disinclined to panic, the werewolves, each individually, used their cunning to quickly assess their circumstances and determine what was required to survive. Utilizing their innate talent for strategy, and seduction, they were able to identify missing humans who were a reasonably close match to anthropoid bodies, were without families and were, basically, antisocial. Being shrewd as well as cunning, they made matches with candidates with financial assets.
New lives could be built in a new world without money, but money could go a long way toward building walls of privacy and providing the one thing they needed most, after company, of course. That thing was territory. Freedom.
The government made it almost too easy by publishing an open database of the missing and requested that corrections be made if someone listed was present and accounted for. Each shifter made his choice then notified the government that they were not missing. They were sorry for the misunderstanding, but had been sailing in the Caribbean or fishing in the Gulf or on an archeological expedition in the Amazon.
By the time the dust of the catastrophe began to settle, seven shifters had found each other through a curious intersection of tech and primeval instinct. Each of the seven, while dealing with his own personal disorientation and sense of loss, quickly identified the Pacific Northwest as the most suitable habitat on the North American continent. Millions of acres of national parks and wildlife reserves was attractive. That, and the cooler temperatures, made the locale almost ideal as shifter temperatures run a full three degrees warmer than humans.
It took only a few weeks to come across each other. Shifters in wolf form can cover great distances. In so doing they came across the scent of others who were similar to themselves if not identical, but definitely distinctive from wild wolves. And each felt immeasurable relief to find others. For social animals, abject solitude would be a sentence to hell.
That was one of the reasons why Ken Sahabe was admitted to the pack without hesitation even though he was not a canine, but a spotted hyena. The pack decided Ken’s social and hunting needs were close enough and admitted him.

The hard wiring of pack behavior hadn’t changed for millennia. However, the language used to describe certain facts of pack life was altered for modern times so that it seemed more politic. For example, rather than saying the alpha decided, which was true, the thought would be expressed as ‘the pack decided’. In Ken’s case, though the actual wolves didn’t have a real vote, they accepted him like one of their own species.

About the Author:


Eight times #1 Amazon Paranormal Romance Bestseller

OVER ONE MILLION BOOKS SOLD

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author, Victoria Danann, has won the prestigious Reviewers’ Choice Award for BEST PARANORMAL ROMANCE SERIES the past four years in a row! Click follow to get notifications of new releases.

Knights of Black Swan – BEST PARANORMAL ROMANCE SERIES (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)

A Summoner’s Tale – BEST PARANORMAL ROMANCE NOVEL (2013)

Moonlight – BEST VAMPIRE/SHIFTER NOVEL (2013)

Solomon’s Sieve – BEST VAMPIRE NOVEL (2014)

Falcon – BEST PARANORMAL ROMANCE NOVEL (2016)

In addition to the brave and beautiful vampire hunting knights, Victoria writes other paranormal romances that often touch on scifi/fantasy along with contemporary bikers for those who love it when the bad boys are soooooo good.

Victoria co-hosts the popular ROMANCE BETWEEN THE PAGES podcast which can be found on itunes or at www.romancecast.com. She and co-host, Riley J. Ford, interview the biggest names in romance every week. Ever wonder about the personalities behind your favorite books? Some of them just might surprise you with their interests, wit, lifestyles, and sense of humor.






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Sunday, 16 September 2018

Spotlight today! "Prince of Dreams" - Nancy Gideon - out October 2nd





Prince of Dreams
House of Terriot
Book Four
Nancy Gideon

Genre: Paranormal

Date of Publication: October 2, 2018

Word Count: 98,500

ASIN B07H4XMSC9

Cover Artist: Patricia Lazarus

Tagline:  Written in the cards . . . Who was this guy, her rescuer, her hero, her knight in shining 2-carats?

Book Description:

Kip . . . Prince in the shapeshifter House of Terriot

He'd said he wasn't a mobster. . . She should have asked if he was a monster.
Who was this too good to be true, always ready in a crisis guy working a menial job for her father? Ophelia knew things. Something was not quite normal about the Kip Terriot hiding behind another name in lace-up dress shoes and a preppy wardrobe – something wild and exciting as all hell. A dangerous something calling to that restless difference in her own soul.

Ophelia . . . daughter of his enemy, girl of his dreams

So sassy, so sweet so perfect . . . and what he had to do would destroy her.
Kip was in New Orleans to save his clan and his kind, not to play white knight for Ophelia Brady with her quirky habits, curvy body and tormented past. His deception would rip the heart from her world, not help heal it. Was his family’s nemesis using his own daughter to make Kip the played instead of the player, pulling him between love and duty to make an impossible choice?

“Emotionally captivating! A brilliant conclusion to a unique series!” – Book Bling





Excerpt from Prince of Dreams . . .
An unnatural being from a family of shapeshifters.
            Even now Ophelia didn’t know whether to laugh or weep at the absurdity of it. Things like that didn’t exist. Except she knew they did, just outside the peripheral, where worlds of fact and fiction met and mingled and blurred. She’d felt their presence in the shadows of reality all her life. She met them in her dreams and visions.
            Kip Terriot gave them gorgeous face and form, but underneath, he was that creature with red eyes and sharp teeth. Her big, bad wolf, who’d protected her from a robber and defended her from abuse, who’d rescued her sister from the attack she still refused to acknowledge. Who loved his family and would do anything for them?
            Who she loved too much to let go but couldn’t give what he needed because she wasn’t his kind.
            Which was the greater fear, what he was or that she’d fail him?
“What are we going to do, Phe? I don’t want to lose this.” He brought her knuckles to his lips for a kiss.
            “I don’t want to lose you. But I already have, haven’t I? You’re a million miles away right now and almost out of reach.”
            “I’m right here.” His argument brought her to him, her knees stepping over his lap to straddle him, arms circling his shoulders, face nestling against the curve of his throat where she rode his hard swallow. He held tight, trying to believe they could make this moment last, this glorious, fiery, tender moment that offered so much and promised so little.
            “You are my prince,” she whispered, breath moist and soft against his neck. “My Prince of Cups. You rode into my life bringing romance, shaking my world to its foundation that first night I met you. It was in the cards.”
            “Fate,” he murmured, smile in his voice. “No escaping it.” His fingers threaded through her hair, pulling back gently to tip up her face, offering sweetly parted lips and glistening eyes.
            He’d planned a sweet kiss but the taste of urgency and need in the sweep of her tongue ruined that noble ambition. They feasted upon one another for long, desperate minutes until she rocked back, thumb swiping the dampness from his mouth.

            “Go, be who you need to be for them. Then come back and be who I need you to be.

About the Author:

Nancy Gideon is the award-winning bestseller of over 65 romances ranging from historical, regency and series contemporary suspense to dark paranormal and horror, with a couple of produced screenplays and non-fiction writing books tossed into the mix.

A legal assistant for a brilliant criminal attorney in Central Michigan (when not at the keyboard working on her latest book in progress), she feeds a Netflix addiction along with all things fur, fin and fowl and dotes on her grandguy.

Nancy’s also written under the pseudonyms Dana Ransom, Rosalyn West and Lauren Giddings. Look for reissues coming soon under those pen names!







Nancy Gideon by Moonlight Goodreads Group: 
https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/109994-nancy-gideon-by-moonlight




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Monday, 27 August 2018

Spirit Warrior: Spirit Walker - Ella J. Smyth - Spotlight


Spirit Warrior
Spirit Walker
Book Three
Ella J. Smyth

Genre: Urban Fantasy Romance

Publisher: Unapologetic Romances

Date of Publication: 26th August 2018

ISBN: 9781386686910

Number of pages: 299
Word Count: 65600

Cover Artist: CoverMe Designs

Tagline: A mighty spirit walker with a personal grudge, set to destroy them both.

Book Description:

Adi and Honi journey to Southern Oklahoma to meet Honi’s Mekui’te tribe at the reservation where he grew up. Honi’s infectious excitement almost erases Adi’s apprehension at meeting his family, and she’s desperate to make a good impression.

When Adi is met with silent hostility that gets worse rather than better, she realizes there may be more to the initial resistance Honi had warned her to expect.

Honi is confused and hurt by his family’s reaction, and by Adi’s increasingly strange behavior. She’s claiming the spirit animals of his tribe are diseased and sickly, but they look just fine to him. On top of that, when Adi meets Honi’s ex, Nina, her jealousy gets way out of hand, and threatens to drive them apart.

While mysterious forces manipulate and distort their realities, can Honi and Adi join forces to figure out what is happening before it’s too late and they are separated forever?

Books2Read     Amazon

Excerpt:

The wind picked up, carrying with it the smell of late fall, of damp vegetation and sour apples. It played with Adi’s hair, although she barely noticed the cold breeze. Too many eyes were staring at her. Adi’s skin itched with the attention. She wasn’t usually this shy, but the weight of all the glares made her afraid to lift her head.
“Come on, Adi, they won’t bite. Let me introduce you. They’re my family—they’ll love you.”
As much as I do. Adi understood Honi’s unspoken words.
How many people were there? Forty? Fifty? Had the entire Mekui’te tribe come out to greet them? Adi shivered. The smell of early snow made her nose twitch. It brought bad memories of a woman with white eyes, forcing her to make a choice between Honi’s life and a lifelong thrall.
She shuddered when an ice-cold gust blew across the open space where Honi had parked their rental. He had called ahead, laughing and joking with his old friend and mentor, John. The shaman of the Mekui’te tribe had expected them hours earlier, but they’d gotten held up at the airport. Their luggage had gone missing for a few hours, plus the rental car hadn’t been ready yet.
When they’d finally driven the five hours from the airport to the reservation, they had to take turns because both of them had been exhausted after the long trip from Germany back to the U.S. The closer they’d gotten to their destination, the more Honi’d woken up. His excitement to see his family again after more than a year had been so infectious that Adi’d swallowed down her apprehension.
Until now. She kept a smile on her face, trying to appear relaxed and at ease. Inside, she was anything but. There was something disconcerting standing in front of such a large group of people, most of who looked at her with suspicion.
Was it because she was a stranger? Had John told the community she was a spirit walker? She couldn’t imagine he had. So why the hostility that wafted from the silent group like an invisible cloud?
Honi was talking to a tall man with a black Stetson pulled deep into his craggy face. His eyes were warm as he hugged Honi to him. Adi remembered meeting him in the hospital when she’d sat next to Honi’s bed, waiting for him to wake up from a coma. His name was Jim Fisher, and he was Honi’s father.
She watched him for a moment as the two men chatted excitedly. He looked just like Honi would when he got older. Still tall and lean, only the lines around his eyes betrayed his age. Her boyfriend turned towards her and waved her over. She kept her eyes on Jim Fisher’s face as she approached, smiling politely.
His expression changed from one second to the next. Gone was the warmth, the humor. Instead, he crossed his arms and spread his legs, anchoring himself. Adi had already stuck out her hand, ready to shake his. Confused, she pulled it back. She looked at Honi, who seemed equally baffled.
After an awkward silence, Adi spoke, still keeping a timid smile on her face. “Mr. Fisher? Do you remember me? We met at—”
“I know who you are.” The words were harsh, underlined by his angry expression.
“You are the woman responsible for Honi giving up his entire future. For you, he dropped university, and followed you to Germany. And now you have the nerve to come here, with him, asking for my blessing? You, an outsider to this community?”
He stared at her, his dark eyes blazing with fury. Adi swallowed hard. She hadn’t been sure how she would be greeted. She’d been nervous about meeting Honi’s family, but had not expected this level of hostility towards her.
Her eyeballs grew hot, and tears welled up. Driving all the way to the reservation had taken forever. During the entire journey, Honi had told her stories about his family. About his relationship with John and many of the elders. He’d made her laugh so many times with funny stories about how lovable and unique the tribe’s people were. Adi had expected that they might be slow to accept her. But she’d been unprepared to be shut out like this from the very first moment she met Honi's family.
Adi's hands balled into fists. She fought back tears of exhaustion and humiliation. Then she blinked her eyes open again, fiercely determined to not show any weakness. A familiar emotion welled up. How dared they treat her like this? They didn't even know her. They had no idea what Honi and Adi had been through. It was a miracle that they made it out the other side alive and well. Adi had sacrificed the rest of her life in servitude to the faerie queen, with the understanding that Honi could never find out.
“Honi,” she whispered. When he didn't turn around and continued staring at his father, she repeated louder, “Honi!”
He whirled around. His obvious confusion and sadness calmed her down a little bit and softened her next words.
"I'm really tired. Can we please postpone all this until tomorrow? I don't want to stand here in the freezing wind and argue with these people."
She waved her hand dismissively at Honi's tribe—not the nicest choice of words, but she was pissed at her treatment. Honi's eyebrows drew together as the only outward sign of irritation with the way she’d just shrugged off his entire family. He took her arm and without saying another word to his father, he led her back to the car.
The plan had been to stay with his parents, but instead, Honi drove to the only motel within ten miles of the reservation. After he’d checked them in, he silently carried their suitcases into the double room. Adi was glad he’d done so without asking, because the tiredness was now so enveloping that she could barely keep her head up.
It wasn't a five-star luxury hotel, but the linens were reasonably clean, and the room smelled only a little. Adi sat down at the edge of the bed, too numb and exhausted even to cry. Honi sat next to her and put his arm around her shoulders. He looked as upset as she felt.
"I'm so sorry. I don't know why he acted the way he did.” He pulled her in tighter, and Adi put her head on his shoulder. “Let's get a good night’s sleep, and tomorrow we’ll go back and start over."


About the Author:

Unapologetic Romances Because Love Needs No Excuses

Growing up in Germany, Ella always had a passion for myths and fairytales. No surprise then that she married an Irishman and lived 6 years in Ireland, the country of Leipreachán, Sidhe, Púca and other fascinating creatures. There's nothing like walking at night through a deserted laneway, fog swirling around your feet, knowing that maybe, just maybe, on the other side of the hedge, there might be some old lady in a black cloak waiting for you...

If you got the shivers right now, you know why Ella feels compelled to write stories around the supernatural and paranormal. There's nothing like a delicious shudder making you enjoy life just a little more... Plus she’s a romantic.

So look forward to modern romantic stories set against the background of ancient myths and legends. Ella hopes you enjoy reading them as much as she enjoys writing them!





Monday, 4 June 2018

Re-releasing "Watch the Skies" - touring soon!


My re- release "Watch the Skies" is out now on Amazon and I'll be touring as of June 9th!



Alien hunter Aster is frustrated in more ways than one. Her team haven't had a proper encounter in months, and her cute teammate Wade is never going to see her that way - and no other man would let a woman like Aster take charge in a relationship anyway.

Until one night, out in the woods, when the team are engulfed in a white light - and overwhelmed with desire like they've never known. Suddenly Aster sees a new side to Wade, one that will let her give her alpha tendencies free rein...

But as the creatures they met return again and again, Aster begins to wonder what they really want - to see her and Wade together, or something more sinister?

Tour dates

June 9 -  Book Unleashed - tour opening promo
               JustLove Books - interview
June 11 - Book Junkiez - excerpt
June 13 - Happily Ever Bookworm - promo
June 14 - Romancing the Books and More - another excerpt and five Fun Facts about me...
June 18 - Welcome to my Dungeon - excerpt and my "Watch the Skies" playlist
June 20 - Hot Choco and Books - review and another excerpt
June 21 - The Romance Review - review
June 22 - Teatime and Books - promo

I've got a free copy of "Watch the Skies" and a $10 Amazon gift card up for grabs, so follow the tour and enter to win!





Tuesday, 22 May 2018

GDPR update


As you are probably all aware, the new General Data Protection Regulation comes into force on May 25th.

To those of you who also subscribe to my newsletter, I've made the decision to close this.

My blog will continue, but followers are free to unsubscribe or remove comments at any time. I would never use your personal information for anything other than sending out blog updates and will continue in this way. The Google privacy policy is here: https://policies.google.com/privacy.

I have a re-release due out and a tour which I'll announce shortly - it's going to be a busy summer!