Posted in Crime, Spotlight, suspense, Trailer on February 7, 2017

Synopsis

When you’ve lost it all, how far would you go to get it back?

Bennett Covington has a good life. The support of a loving, growing family. A satisfying job. A roof over his head. Not perfect, but close enough.

Nothing lasts forever, of course. After stumbling into the middle of a back-alley murder, Bennett becomes entangled in a web of violence set in motion by members of a shadowy criminal organization.

Subjected to psychological torment, Bennett struggles to understand the depth of their evil intentions – intentions that threaten to take much more than just his life.

Through it all, one question endures: why have they taken such a keen interest in him? When he runs, they catch him. When he hides, they find him.

The only way out is to fight back.

About the Author

Chip Scarinzi is an award-winning communications executive and the author of two books. His first book, Diehards, is a work of non-fiction about sports fandom. Ghosts is his first novel. Scarinzi lives in the San Francisco Bay Area island community of Alameda with his wife and two young daughters.

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Posted in Cozy, Giveaway, mystery, Spotlight on February 5, 2017

A Palette for Murder (An Aurora Anderson Mystery)

Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Henery Press (January 31, 2017)
Paperback: 268 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1635111415
E-Book ASIN: B01M74ZIL3

Synopsis

A killer heat wave settles over Seagull Lane…

Summer’s sizzling in Vista Beach, the home of computer programmer and tole-painting enthusiast Aurora (Rory) Anderson. The abnormally high temperatures are hard on everyone in the quiet Los Angeles county beach community, especially the city’s homeless population. Residents are doing everything they can to stay cool, including leaving windows open to catch the faintest breeze. Not the best idea when a string of burglaries is plaguing nearby towns.

Still, Rory doesn’t expect to find her neighbor’s body just a few doors down. When suspicion falls on a friend and fellow painter, Rory must discover the truth before the police paint the wrong picture and send her friend away permanently.

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About The Author

Sybil JohnsonSybil Johnson’s love affair with reading began in kindergarten with “The Three Little Pigs.” Visits to the library introduced her to Encyclopedia Brown, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle and a host of other characters. Fast forward to college where she continued reading while studying Computer Science. After a rewarding career in the computer industry, Sybil decided to try her hand at writing mysteries. Her short fiction has appeared in Mysterical-E and Spinetingler Magazine, among others. Originally from the Pacific Northwest, she now lives in Southern California where she enjoys tole painting, studying ancient languages and spending time with friends and family.

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January 30 – Island Confidential – INTERVIEW

January 31 – Cozy Up With Kathy – SPOTLIGHT

February 1 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, &, Sissy, Too! – SPOTLIGHT

February 2 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW

February 2 – Bibliophile Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

February 3 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT

February 4 – Books,Dreams,Life – SPOTLIGHT

February 5 – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW

February 5 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

February 6 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – REVIEW

February 6 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

February 7 – Varietats – REVIEW

February 7 – View from the Birdhouse – SPOTLIGHT

February 8 – Girl with Book Lungs – SPOTLIGHT

February 9 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW, INTERVIEW

Posted in Book Release, Spotlight, Young Adult on February 4, 2017

Synopsis

Spivey Spillane’s grandmammy always said there were only two good reasons to kill a man — for cheating on a woman, and for serving drinks to a Yankee. She may have had a hand in winning the Revolutionary War, but even she never met the likes of Alabama Sam. Sam robs a bank under Spillane’s name, casts him in an obscene one-man play wearing only a pink tutu, and starts a betting pool on how many wieners he has. Despite the indignities Spillane suffers, he chases Sam across Gold-Rush-era California because Sam is the only one who knows the location of a hidden fortune buried somewhere in the hills.

Meanwhile in the present, 17-year-olds Amanda and Jet have rekindled an old childhood rivalry. Amanda is obsessed with finding the treasure of her infamous ancestor Spivey Spillane. Jet and Amanda’s feud comes to a head over an extended incident involving a broken window, an exploded car, and a charge of sexual assault with a candy Batman. Jet vows that he is going to find to Spillane’s gold before Amanda does, but it doesn’t take them long to realize that someone may have come this way already — someone who wants the past to stay buried.

About the Author

What authors have influenced your writing the most and why?

People say I have a bit of Vonnegut in me, which is very flattering but only true in a figurative sense — I haven’t stolen his false teeth or anything. Of course I was addicted to Vonnegut growing up, but then I also love John Kennedy Toole, who wrote A Confederacy of Dunces. It’s one of the funniest novels of all time, and helpless indignation still cracks me up to this day. I’d also have to mention James Kennedy, whose novel The Order of Odd-Fish showed me that you can still write dazzling, hilarious, clever novels for teenagers. Somehow I’d got the idea that had gone out with hydrogen dirigibles and asbestos underpants.

Why did you choose to start writing YA novels? What about your voice really caters to that audience?  

I got into YA novels when I realized you can get away with pretty much anything except being boring. If you write for adults you instantly get shelved as one genre or another, but YA is kind of its own genre. No one bats an eyelid when you write about radium-obsessed teenagers in antique flying machines, or Old West vamps with guns that shoot round corners, or accidentally assaulting people with candy cake-toppers. The only thing you’re not allowed to do is be boring, which suits me fine. When a book spends ten pages telling me how the protagonist cooks dinner and how everyone’s hair smells, I’m halfway ready to drop-kick the thing into the street.

San Francisco writer ST JOHN KARP is an ornamental hermit who likes to live near exciting things so he cannot go to them. He has an undying love for the unusual, the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band and toast. His debut novel, RADIUM BABY, released in 2013. SKUNKS DANCE, Karp’s second novel, releases Jan. 24, 2017.

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Posted in Science Fiction, Spotlight on February 1, 2017

Science Fiction

ReAnimus Press

320 pages

February 1, 2017

Synopsis

The arrival of a moon-sized triggers an exploratory mission led by Alis, a cybernetically enhanced woman. The journey into the object allows Alis to explore herself as well as the new arrival.

About the Author

Science fiction and mystery author John E. Stith writes across many worlds. His books have been translated to French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese and Russian and are even available in braille for the sight-impaired.  His stories have been categorized as “Hard science fiction,” a label given to those stories thoroughly researched to play fair with the rules of science; something any die-hard SciFi fan can appreciate.

It was during the summer Science-Math Institute for High School Students at Cloud State College, John served as editor for the school paper, but several more years would pass before the urge to write, strengthened by years of loving to read, was too compelling to ignore.  His stories vary, but his books are packed with suspense, mystery, and humor.

Stith holds a B.A. in physics from the University of Minnesota, has served as an Air Force Officer, where he worked at NORAD Cheyenne Mountain Complex. The passion for science runs in his family, as his father George worked at the White Sands Missile Range on such projects like the rocket sled.

He has appeared on a live nationwide PBS broadcast or Science-Fiction Science-Fact (SF2) and his work has also been sold to film and television. His novel Reckoning Infinity was chosen as one of Science Fiction Chronicle’s Best Science Fiction Novels,  Redshift Rendezvous was picked as a Nebula Award nominee and Manhattan Transfer received an honorable mention from the Hugo Awards and a nomination from the Seiun Award in Japan.

Stith is a member of Science-Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), Mystery Writers of America (MWA), Writers Guild of America (WGA), International Thriller Writers, Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers (RMFW), Colorado Author’s League and Mensa.  He currently lives in Colorado Springs.

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Posted in Giveaway, romance, Spotlight on January 31, 2017

Synopsis

Depression is just a word. It means less to me than it does to you and I’m the one who’s living it.
I live. I love. I laugh.
And you’ll believe all my lies.
Because she does too.

The world is a stranger.
But everyone thinks they know me.
My body has all the answers.
But my mind can’t understand them.
I’m drowning everyday.
But I never go near water.
The air in my lungs is toxic.
But I’m breathing all the time.

You’ll think you understand.
But how can you?
Even with her, I’m alone.

About the Author

D Breeze is a British contemporary romance author who lives for the angst and lives of her characters. A filthy-minded dreamer. A fantasist, with a penchant for writing stories to push your boundaries.  She loves losing herself in books, reveling in sarcasm, and making people blush.

If she’s not at the bar, handing out shots to unsuspecting victims, you can usually find D hunched over her laptop at four in the morning, still trying to piece together the lines of fantasy vs reality.

Failing that, she’ll be curled up in a corner, rocking back and forth and cursing over the characters arguing in her mind!

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Giveaway

Head on over to D’s facebook page  to be in with a chance of winning a $10 Amazon Gift Card and an ebook of Just Listen.  All you have to do is like her page and comment on the pinned post.  Good luck!

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Posted in excerpt, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Spotlight, Urban on January 29, 2017

Synopsis

Ian’s alliance with the rebels brings the wrath of the Pur army crashing down on them, but he is forced to abandon his new allies and travels to Earth’s alternate universe to rescue Rayne. As Ian combs the strange, desolate planet in search for her, he discovers the true story of the Weir and his connection to Earth’s imminent destruction.

Excerpt

Several miles later, and unsure if he could take much more, the current slowed and he leaned back in exhaustion. The boat glided into a wide cavern with a high-arched ceiling. A narrow ray of natural light streamed from a sizeable crevice overhead. The striations across the rock walls took Ian’s breath away and he yearned for better light to view them in all their splendor. The wall depicting the planet’s evolutionary story, displaying various crust layers rising high above his head.

Bump! One of the paddles slipped out of Ian’s hand and he scrambled to retrieve it before it floated away. He slid the handle back into the iron ring that rose from the side of the boat and breathed a sigh of relief. Droplets, either from sweat or from his wet hair, plopped onto his cheek, and he used his forearm to swipe his forehead. Bump!

The rowboat swished sideways in the water. It hadn’t been diverted by an underwater rock. The motion felt more like a nudge.

A water creature swam beneath him. Was it playing with him, or was the gesture a warning?

In order to conjure a core blast, Ian would have to let go of one of the oars. If he pulled it into the boat, he’d be unable to steer.

The creature’s back broke the surface on the port side. It was about seven feet long and covered in thick scales, each one the size of Ian’s hand. Phosphorescent algae grew between the curved scales, outlining them in an emerald glow. Ian leaned over the side of the boat as the creature dove beneath and disappeared into the murky depths. He had no idea how deep the water was in the cavern, but from what he could tell, it was enough deep for this creature to have grown to the size of a small car.

He searched for a ledge, anything he could paddle over to so he could be better prepared if the creature returned. Nothing but sheer rock walls surrounded him.

The sounds of the gentle lapping water kept his breaths company, yet were unable to sooth his pulse.

When the creature didn’t return after a couple of minutes, Ian dipped the oars into the water with the merest of sound and pulled back with gentle force, headed for the mouth of the cave several yards ahead. Ian passed under a stream of natural light, and was blinded for a few seconds.

He cocked his ear at a change in the surface of the water from behind. The creature was on a direct path toward him. Ian pulled the oar in his left hand with everything he had but it wasn’t enough to skirt the oncoming blitz. The creature lifted the back end of the boat out of the water and sent Ian lunging to the side.

He face-planted on the surface, and then was pulled under the water.

 

About the Author

sue duffSue Duff has dreamed of dragons and spaceships before she could even read, so it’s only natural that she now combines both fantasy and science fiction as her favorite genre. Having written since high school, Duff never took it seriously until a skiing accident laid her up for an entire summer and she turned on the word processor to combat the boredom. A couple years later, her first urban fantasy novel, Fade to Black , was one of five finalists in the RMFW Colorado Gold Writing Contest and in 2015, Duff’s writing earned her the PEN Award.

She is the second oldest of six girls with an avid reader mom and her dad, the family’s single drop of testosterone in a sea of estrogen.

By day, Duff is a dedicated speech-language therapist at an inner city school district, a career she pursued much in part to her aunt who got her hooked on stories of the profession when Duff was younger. She is passionate about the work she does and regularly works to help those students that need it the most.

Sue is a member of the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers and The Pikes Peak Writers.  She calls Colorado home and when not saving the world one page at a time, she can be found walking her great dane, getting her hands dirty in her garden, or creating something delicious in her kitchen.

Check out her blog, A Cook’s Guide to Writing and other musings on her website.

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Catch up on the series by reading Fade to BlackMasks and Mirrors and Sleight of Hand!

Love Audiobooks? You can also listen to Fade to Black through Audible.

Posted in Cozy, Giveaway, mystery, Spotlight on January 26, 2017

Time Out (A Dodie O’Dell Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Publisher: Lyrical Underground (January 17, 2017)
Paperback: 240 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1601837226
E-Book ASIN: B01EQ2N1W6

Synopsis

The amateur actors at the Etonville Little Theatre may be known for chewing the scenery, but restaurant manager Dodie O’Dell has something more appetizing for them to sink their teeth into. She’s been taking bows in her small New Jersey town for her theme menus, designed to complement the local productions. This fall, the community theatre is staging Arsenic and Old Lace, set in 1940s Brooklyn, so Dodie is serving up hot dogs, Italian ices, egg creams, and knishes at the weekend food festival.

All is going well until Antonio Digenza, the ex-Off-Off-Broadway director of the show, dies dramatically while noshing on a knish. As rumors of food poisoning quickly spread, Dodie scrambles to rescue the Windjammer restaurant’s reputation. But when clues point to foul play, she’s faced with a cast of suspects all auditioning for the part of DiGenza’s murderer. She’ll need to act fast to shine a spotlight on the killer—before it’s curtains for another victim . . .

About the Author

Suzanne Trauth is a novelist, playwright, screenwriter, and a former university theatre professor. She is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and the Dramatists Guild. When she is not writing, Suzanne coaches actors and serves as a celebrant performing wedding ceremonies. She lives in Woodland Park, New Jersey.

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January 17 – Jersey Girl Book Reviews – REVIEW

January 17 – The Editing Pen – INTERVIEW

January 18 – The Ninja Librarian – REVIEW

January 19 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

January 20 – Varietats – REVIEW

January 21 – Shelley’s Book Case – REVIEW

January 22 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW

January 23 – Girl with Book Lungs – SPOTLIGHT

January 24 – View from the Birdhouse – SPOTLIGHT

January 25 – A Holland Reads – GUEST POST

January 26 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

January 27 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

January 28 – Bibliophile Reviews – REVIEW

January 29 – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW

January 30 – A Chick Who Reads – REVIEW

Posted in Fantasy, Science Fiction, Spotlight on January 22, 2017

Synopsis

Quiti and the rest of the Hair Suits have just set up the Hair Suite, the embassy of the alien Hair Balls, when they learn they have competition. Alien cyborgs called Chip Monks want to win Earth for themselves. The two species must duel for control.

These rivals discover a third alien species that threatens to destroy Earth, and have to join up quickly in order to protect the planet they are both seeking to win. Along the way, they get swept up in a world of intergalactic politics, wormholes, and role-playing.

Will they be able to save Planet Earth in time?

About the Author

Piers Anthony, critically acclaimed author of the New York Times bestselling Xanth series, shows off his signature originality and wit in this entertaining and inventive sequel to Hair Power.

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Posted in excerpt, Giveaway, romance, Spotlight on January 22, 2017

Synopsis

MATT REED IS HIDING

…from his fans

…from his past

…from a failure too painful to contemplate

Most of all, Matt is hiding from himself.

VIVIENNE FORRESTER IS A WOMAN WHO GIVES HER ALL

…to her friends and family

…to her online food blog

…to the man she loves

Vivienne will try anything and everything to coax Matt out of his self-imposed exile. But for this to work, Matt is going to have to meet her halfway…

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Excerpt

Carefully, she put the cap back on the bottle and stood. “Okay, maybe I don’t know exactly what you’re going through, but I can see how it’s affecting you. And I know I don’t know you that well, but it doesn’t mean I can’t see what’s right in front of me.”

“Really?” he asked incredulously.

“Yes, really.”

He made a snorting sound and walked away. Vivienne eyed the back door and seriously considered just calling it a night. Clearly she wasn’t helping him in any way, shape or form and was only serving to instigate on an already sensitive subject. Besides, she wasn’t good with confrontations. It was one of the reasons she enjoyed working from home – no drama.

So without a word, she simply made her way across the room toward the door. Her hand had barely touched the doorknob when she felt Matt’s hands on her shoulders as he spun her around to face him. She gasped in surprise. “Matt? What…?”

“What do you see right now, Vivienne?” he asked, his voice low, a near growl.

“I don’t…what do you mean?” There was a tremor in her voice and it was breathy and very unlike her.

He stepped in closer and her back came in contact with the wall. “You said you can see what’s right in front of you. So tell me, what do you see?”

It was a loaded question, she thought. And if she wasn’t careful, she’d blurt out how she saw a sexy-as-hell man who turned her on simply by being in the same room! But there was no way she could admit to that and she knew it certainly wouldn’t help the situation at all.

“I see a man who is struggling with his identity,” she said, swallowing hard.

His eyes narrowed. “Seriously? That’s what you see? That’s all you see?”

There was something in his tone that warned her this was going in a completely different direction than she thought and all she could do was nod.

“Then you honestly can’t see what’s right in front of you.” Now his voice was gruff and so deep and so close that Vivienne almost purred from the sound of it. “Because I’m not struggling – I’m a bastard. I’m selfish. And you know what? I don’t even care.”

She shook her head.

“Trust me. I know what I want, and it’s right in front of me.”

Her eyes went wide as she softly gasped.

And then he pressed against her fully and kissed her.

About the Author

Samantha Chase, a creative writing teacher, released her debut novel, Jordan’s Return, in November 2011. Since then, she has published seventeen more titles and has become a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. She lives with her husband of twenty-four years and their two sons in North Carolina.

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Posted in Cozy, Giveaway, mystery, Spotlight on January 15, 2017

Curried Away: A Spice Shop Mystery
Publisher: Minotaur Books (December 13, 2016)
Hardcover: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1250081254
E-Book ASIN: B01G1J80H8

Synopsis

Piper Prescott, proprietor of Spice It Up!, has persuaded Doug Winters, the mild-mannered vet she’s been dating, to demonstrate Indian cuisine at her shop. But before Doug’s presentation of classic chicken curry is completed, Ned Feeney, local handyman, bursts in with news of a murder.

Sandy Granger, the director of a local production of Steel Magnolias, was found strangled in the third-floor balcony of the Brandywine Creek Opera House. Sandy, it seems, had not endeared herself to cast or crew. Complaints about her ran the gamut from her management style to her lack of people skills. Everyone connected with the production falls under suspicion, including Piper Prescott’s BFF, Reba Mae Johnson, who made it well known how unhappy she is that she was cut from the cast.

When the spotlight for the dastardly deed shines on Reba Mae, Piper rushes to her friend’s defense. Who among Sandy’s detractors was angry enough to wrap a silk scarf around her neck—and pull tight? Will Piper succeed in solving the case before she becomes the killer’s encore performance? And will she ever learn just how to prepare the perfect curry? As delicious as it is charming, the latest entry in Gail Oust’s mouth-watering Spice Shop Mysteries is sure to delight both old fans and new.

About the Author

Friends often accuse Gail Oust of flunking retirement.  While working as a nurse/vascular technologist, Gail penned nine historical romances under the pseudonym Elizabeth Turner for Avon, Pocket, Berkley, and Kensington.  It wasn’t until she and her husband retired to South Carolina that inspiration struck for a mystery.  Hearing the words, “maybe it’s a dead body,” while golfing with friends fired her imagination for the Bunco Babe Mystery series originally published by NAL.  In conjunction with Beyond the Page Publishing, the Bunco Babe series has  been republished in digital format as the Kate McCall Mysteries complete with new titles and a whole new look.  Gail is currently writing the Spice Shop Mysteries for Minotaur/St. Martin’s.  When she isn’t reading, writing, or sleeping, she can usually be found on the golf course or hanging out with friends.

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January 6 – A Holland Reads – REVIEW

January 6 – Girl with Book Lungs – SPOTLIGHT

January 7 – A Chick Who Reads – REVIEW

January 8 – Island Confidential – INTERVIEW

January 9 – Jane Reads – REVIEW, GUEST POST

January 10 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, &,Sissy, Too! – SPOTLIGHT

January 10 – Laura’s Interests – SPOTLIGHT

January 11 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – COZY WEDNESDAY

January 12 – Readeropolis – REVIEW

January 12 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

January 13 – Brooke Blogs – REVIEW, GUEST POST

January 14 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW

January 15 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

January 15 – Bibliophile Reviews – REVIEW