Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Drifting by Steven M. Cross

 


May is Mental Health Awareness Month, making Drifting by Steven M. Cross a timely book to read. Check out this excerpt before you download your copy. You can also follow the tour for even more. Let the author know what you think along the way. Best of luck entering the giveaway!



Drifting brings light into the dark corners of mental health, bullying, and sexual assault.

Dean Knight has struggled against his personal demons for as long as he can remember. He thought he lost that struggle when he felt their knowing grip pull him deeper in the river, but he was saved. Saved for what? His memories are trapped within his mental illness. He hears his sister and father’s voices. The problem is, they’re dead, both killed in the same river that tried to claim Dean. As he struggles to remember, he discovers their voices aren’t pushing him to harm himself, but to discover the truth surrounding both their deaths. One person, Ella, has all the answers, but Dean can’t remember if she loved him or tried to kill him.

Roxanne “Rocky” Rivers struggles against her own demons, not voices, but a past trauma she can’t fully remember. She only knows everyone at school thinks she’s a slut and a head-case. A razor her only release for the pain. Rocky knows no one will believe a crazy girl who tries to kill herself.

Dean and Rocky find a connection. Can they find the strength and trust to help each other when neither can survive alone?

Read an excerpt:
We have walked into another large cave. In one wall, a small chamber is cut.

“I bet there’s treasure in there. Arrgh,” like a pirate, then laughing hysterically, cackling, and releasing my hand. I kneel and see a pocket watch lying at the chamber’s entrance.

A hand, half bone, half decayed skin, creeps from the chamber, grabs my wrist. My heart catches. My eyes bulge. A scream rises in my throat.

Then, I see a bashed in skull emerge from the opening, its jaw set in a gaping grin and then another hand. Behind it on the floor, I see part of a skull, blood, a tooth, and hair. The skeleton crawls out of the chamber. I hear the girl’s crazed laughter. Bones skitter over the ground, click like castanets.

“Dean.” Its voice is thick like it’s filled with sand. I, we, feel like our head is going to explode into pieces of blood and brain and bone.

When I close my eyes, it grabs me and lifts me up, flopping me over its shoulder like an old rug. I can’t move, can’t talk, can’t breathe. The dry, brittle bones click against my skin.

It takes me to another part of the cave on the edge of a high cliff, lifts me off its shoulder, grabs my shirt, dangles me over the edge of the cliff, lets go.

I kick and scream as I fall through the air. I look up, see the face of a beautiful girl, then disappear into a pool of hot, frothy water. As I peer through the churning water, the skeleton’s hand grabs my hair.

I scream, choke on water, but then I’m gulping fresh air and staring into the Rose’s face.

“What the hell?”

“I’m naked,” I say aloud, though I’m only thinking it in my head.

“Next time, I’ll let your skinny ass drown.” She turns, leaves the bathroom.

Available on Amazon
(affiliate)


Steve Cross is an educator/freelance writer who lives in Poplar Bluff, MO. His credits include four young adult novels, two fantasy novels, and seven plays. He has optioned one script and sold another one. Plus, he's finished as a quarterfinalist in Bluecat and in Fresh Voices screenwriting competition. He and his wife have one daughter and two grandchildren with whom they spend a lot of time. Cross loves Cardinals baseball, classic rock music, and character-driven movies. His favorite films are Dead Poets Society and Field of Dreams. Cross also likes to read, everything from Young Adult contemporary novels to screenplays, to horror and fantasy. At 62 and a cancer survivor, he believes his writing career is just now getting into full swing. His favorite type of screenplay to write is a psychological drama.

https://www.facebook.com/steven.cross.56/

https://www.facebook.com/stevecrosswordswrites

https://twitter.com/stevecrosswords

https://www.instagram.com/stevecrosswords/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/987662.Steven_Cross



Steven M. Cross will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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Thursday, May 20, 2021

Read an excerpt from He'll Be Waiting by Liz Alterman

   

We are thrilled to share an excerpt from Liz Alterman's debut release,

HE'LL BE WAITING!

He'll Be Waiting is a standalone YA Thriller that will have you on the edge of your seat and up reading all night!

 

GoodReads ~ Amazon ~ Indiebound ~ Barnes&Noble

(affiliate link included)
 

Synopsis: 

What would you do to remember? What would you give to forget?

When Tess Porter agrees to pick up her boyfriend’s college pal at the airport on a snowy December night, she has no idea she’s about to embark on the most dangerous ride of her life.

Two days later, the 17-year-old wakes up in a hospital with broken bones, unable to remember how she got there. Her parents are acting strange, and neither James, her boyfriend, nor her best friend, Izzy, has visited. As she struggles to physically recover, Tess wrestles with haunting questions: What happened? Will her memory ever return? And what if she’s better off not recalling any of it?    


     


Read an excerpt:
“Tess! Tess!’ Mom pats my right arm gently. “Honey, wake up, you’re having a bad dream.”

I stare at her, confused. It was so real. I’d been tumbling, falling down beside a flat cement wall. I’d tried to stop myself, but there was nothing to grab on to, no banister or ledge. All I could smell was damp, wet earth. A man stood above me. I couldn’t see his face and had no idea who he was. But one thing was clear: He’d come to hurt me. Me specifically.

In my nightmare and in real life, my mouth is dry, my tongue as sandpapery as Daffy’s. I can’t speak. My heart gallops, thumping hoofbeats pound in my ears.

“This is how it ends!” he shouted in the dream, his voice echoing as I plunged into total darkness and struggled to crawl out of sight. I couldn’t move. My legs wouldn’t work.

I want to tell Mom everything, but I can’t catch my breath. Was it only a dream or does it have something to do with my accident? What if it’s one of the flashes Lydia talked about? Memories attempting to resurface? Is the man in the dream Nick? My head hurts thinking about it. For once, I'm actually grateful to be in this hospital bed. Safe.



     



And check out Liz's He'll Be Waiting playlist to enhance your read!

Spotify Playlist



         



Meet the author:

    

Liz Alterman lives in New Jersey with her husband and three sons. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Parents, McSweeney's, and other publications. He'll Be Waiting is her first young adult novel. When she isn't writing, she spends most days microwaving the same cup of coffee and looking up synonyms.    

Connect with Liz:

Facebook ~ Twitter ~ Instagram

 

Friday, April 30, 2021

Clockwork Igni (Angelbound) by Christna Bauer

 


OK, YA urban fantasy fans, this one is for you. Check out an excerpt from Clockwork Igni by Christina Bauer and then download your own copy. Be sure to leave questions and comments as you follow the tour. And best of luck in the giveaway!



Long live the me! As Queen of Antrum, I rule an underground realm of demon hunters who love finding new caves. Hey, it’s boring down here; I’m glad they all have a hobby. Per usual, I try to act interested about their latest discovery, but all I hear is "blah blah blah new cavern blah blah blah Forbidden Tombs blah blah blah massive bronze pyramids blah blah blah creepy ticking sounds." It’s a little odd, but I’m not worried.

My bad.

Suddenly, the Forbidden Tombs burst through the ground in my home realm of Purgatory. Bronze pyramids smash through abandoned buildings and highways, making rush hour a nightmare. Even worse, the metal structures attract tiny lightning bolts called igni, which are my very special supernatural buddies. Within minutes, every last igni gets stolen away.

Now. I’m. Pissed.

Whoever hides inside those pyramids? Time to dust off your mummies and shine up your sarcophagi. Because my husband, Lincoln, and I are breaking in and kicking ass.

Angelbound Origins
In which Myla Lewis kicks ass and takes names. Nuff said.
1. Angelbound
2. Scala
3. Acca
4. Thrax
5. The Dark Lands
6. The Brutal Time
7. Armageddon
8. Quasi Redux
9. Clockwork Igni
10. Lady Reaper


Read an excerpt:
I stand in a small square room. A heavy iron door looms before me. All around, the walls are lined with intricately-entwined gears and springs. Tiny pieces whirl and tick away at high speed. With each click and swipe, a tiny jolt of worry ricochets down my spine. Sweat beads on my palms.

I’m girl enough to admit it. This scene freaks me out.

No question why, either. This isn’t just any metal portal. It’s Pandora’s Door. As in, the girl didn’t keep a box of nasties. Nope. Instead, something awful lurks behind this very entrance. If I pull on the handle, that magical whatchamacallit gets free. Based on what I’ve learned, the mystery something-something could make everything right again. In other words, my igni would return. I’ll move souls once more. The Great Scala is back. How perfect.

Or I could release an unknown scourge that destroys all the after-realms. Definitely not as cool.

A memory appears. I picture Verus giving me a solemn warning: “No matter how tempting the door may appear, you must step back and walk away.”

It’s logical enough advice. Plus, Verus is an oracle angel. In my experience, she’s right most of the time. Perhaps I should give up. Go home. Play with my kid. Smooch my hottie husband. Get a mocha.

That lasts all of five seconds.

Screw it. I’m going in.

I grasp the handle and pull.

(affiliate link)


Christina Bauer thinks that fantasy books are like bacon: they just make life better. All of which is why she writes romance novels that feature demons, dragons, wizards, witches, elves, elementals, and a bunch of random stuff that she brainstorms while riding the Boston T. Oh, and she includes lots of humor and kick-ass chicks, too. Christina lives in Newton, MA with her husband, son, and semi-insane golden retriever, Ruby. She loves to connect with her fans at BauersBooks.com.





Christina Bauer will be awarding an angel/demon necklace to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, April 26, 2021

Dark Creation by Kelsey Ketch

 



Welcome to the Book Tour! 
Today you can check out an excerpt from Dark Creation and author Kelsey Ketch talks more about writing Charissa's story. There's also a great giveaway at the end!

Dark Creation (A Dark Reflections Short Story #2)
By
Kelsey Ketch
Release Date: April 30th, 2021
New Adult Dark Fantasy Short Story



Summary from Goodreads:

Long before Charissa began her murderous rampage through history, she was a young woman living in ancient Alexandria.

Oppressed by society and cursed by the color of her hair, Charissa had hardly seen the world beyond the four walls of her home. So, when her husband leaves for extended military duty, she takes the opportunity to tour the city her brother once loved. Little does she know the Fates have other plans in store for her when she runs into an exotic woman in the Rhakotis District. The encounter will change her life forever.


Read an excerpt:

A soft heat mixed with a sweet metallic scent made my mouth water. My empty gut squirmed and rumbled. My eyes fluttered open only to find the room around me blurred. From what I could tell, I was lying on a piece of furniture covered in pillows, much like the seven couches of my husband’s andron. An image moved above me, and something soft and sticky pressed against my lips. A honey-like fluid rushed into my mouth. I swallowed greedily, letting it nourish my dry throat. As my stomach filled, my senses sharpened. The rhythmic drums vibrated in my ears. The heat and metallic scent interweaved with myrrh, cinnamon, and frankincense, becoming intoxicating.




Buy Links:

Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo | Smashwords | Apple Books | Google Play

(affiliate link included)




Writing Charissa’s Story

To begin, I want to state that my characters, though fictional, become real in my imagination. They have their own thoughts, their own emotions, and their own secrets even I am not privy too. In my mind, they are their own person.

As the antagonist of Dark Reflections, Charissa has not been an easy character to get along with. If the topic is not about one of her bloody victories or conquests throughout history, she remains closed lipped about her past. I always felt this was because she didn’t want to seem vulnerable. Not in anyone’s eyes. And the details of her life in ancient Egypt and with Sekhmet appeared to be her Achilles’s heel. Still, I’ve been wanting to write Charissa’s backstory since Dark Reflections. And when readers’ reviews revealed they wished they could see things through Charissa’s eyes, I figured I could try again with a short story.

It was Sekhmet, who actually started sharing small bits and pieces of the events from her point of view and told stories Charissa shared with her. I wrote these down, but it was still like only having a few random puzzle pieces scattered on a table. They didn’t explain Charissa’s thought line or what her life was like. So, I started my research into Alexandra during the Hellenistic era: how the city was designed, how the Greek rulers blended religions, and what daily life could have been like for normal citizens. I became particularly interested in the social structure, woman’s lives, and the several districts that separated the people and their cultures. Eventually, as I conducted my research and attempted to apply the information, Charissa finally decided to open up. Not about everything from her past, but enough to write about the day she met Sekhmet, a little about brother and father, and of course, the night she was thrown out of Egypt. I could tell she was uncomfortable sharing even that small amount of information. But I think she also felt if I’m really going to write about her, she wanted me to write the story right.

I still don’t know a lot about Charissa’s story. I’m not sure I ever will or if she will reveal a few hints as I continue to work on the other short stories for the Dark Reflections Short Story Collection. But I knew from day one she was a complicated character. At least, now, I understand her a little better than when I was writing Dark Reflections.


Giveaway! 
5 Winners will receive an e-copy of Dark Reflections by Kelsey Ketch! 



a Rafflecopter giveaway


Playlist! 






About the Author:

Kelsey Ketch is a young-adult/new-adult author, who works as a Wildlife Biologist in the state of North Carolina. During her free time, she can often be found working on her latest work in progress. She also enjoys history, mythology, traveling, and reading.

For more information, please visit her site at kelseyketch.com.





Author Links:

Goodreads | BookBub | Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram


Tour Created by YA Bound Book Tours 

Friday, April 23, 2021

Meet Geoffrey Saign, author of the Magical Beasts series

 


Welcome to the book tour for the YA fantasy Magical Beasts series by Geoffrey Saign! You'll get to take a peek inside with an excerpt, plus get to know the author better in this exclusive interview. Be sure to ask more questions in the comments section! Follow the tour for even more. Best of luck in the giveaway!


Samantha and Jake fight to save their poisoned parents, and instead find themselves in a battle to save the parallel magical world of KiraKu. The two teens discover they must defeat the Evil One—a diabolical master of deception—or their own world will fall too. Samantha must master the mysterious supernatural staff, WhipEye, and find out if she has what it takes to fulfill the prophecy of the true guardian. In a final battle, reminiscent of Lord of the Rings, the two teens will have to risk everything, or lose it all. For Fans of Fantastic Beasts, Percy Jackson, Harry Potter, The Hobbit, and Lord of the Rings.

Winner Outstanding YA Fiction IAN BOTY

~ Magical Beasts is now in development for a major motion picture. ~


Read an excerpt:

Guardian The Quest, Book 2, Magical Beasts

A black belt in kung fu, Jake kicks at the woman’s side. She blocks his foot with her forearm. He slides in and chops at her neck.

With little effort she absorbs the hand blow with her arm, grabs his forearm, and jerks him down on top of me. Kneeling on his back, she keeps us immobile.

Her arm is already healing from Biggie’s whip, so like the hyena she’s a Lesser or Great One too. Originals don’t heal like that. That also explains her speed and strength. She and the hyena have to be working for Gorgon.

My vision blurs. I’m suffocating. From ground level I glimpse Biggie shoving the hyena sideways into a tree.

From behind her, the woman pulls out a thick silver band and slaps it onto Jake’s left wrist. She leans over him to stare at me, her slender face hard. “If you don’t find and deliver Drasine to the smugglers by tomorrow night, the silver band will explode and kill your boyfriend. Go to the Smuggler’s Oasis. Kert will tell you what to do.”

Stunned, now I know she’s working with Gorgon. “Forget you.” I punch at her face, but she grabs my wrist. Her eyes harden, and then she looks up.

Somehow the hyena got past Uncle Biggie and it’s charging us. The animal must be working with the woman. Her ride out of here.

The woman releases my wrist.

I croak, “You can’t do this.” I grab at her but her head is rising and my fingers curl around her swinging gold necklace. It breaks off in my hand as she morphs into a huge cheetah.





Describe your book in one sentence or fewer than 25 words.

Book 1; Two teens enter a deadly battle of good vs. evil when they must choose between saving a magical world or their poisoned parents.

For the Magical Beasts series; Two teens must unite a parallel magical world in time to fight a great evil.

What kind of research did you have to do for it?

There were three areas of research; wildlife, nature, and mythological creatures. All three have abundant representation in the MAGICAL BEASTS series. I have a background in biology and ecology, but I still had to look up a lot of wildlife animals to get the details correct. Since mythological creatures are also represented in the book, that took some research too. Both lines of research were equally fun and satisfying.

Which character was your favorite to write?

That depends on the book in the series. The main character, Sam/Samantha, obviously had to be my favorite to carry the series. Her wildlife expertise and love of all creatures and nature is the glue of the whole series. Her partner Jake had to be nearly as strong. But in each of the books I really loved writing some of the minor characters. In book 1, the ninja dragons were exciting—who wouldn’t love dragons that can morph into ninjas?; in book 2, the manticore Bard was fun to write, because he’s going on a journey to find himself; in book 3, the maniacal murderer called the Beister was one of the most surprising characters I’ve ever written; and in book 4 it would have to be the vampire bat Queen Valera—super-powerful and mysterious, and dangerous.

To which character did you relate the most?

Sam is the main character and she loves wildlife and nature and wants to protect it all. That’s straight out of my heart since I was about 6 years old.

What was one of your favorite scenes?

All my writing has thriller elements. So pacing, mood, and tension keeps building until the final battles at the end, which are some of my favorite scenes to write. Jake is a goofball, and the interplay between him and Sam was often humorous and also very fun to write. There are also a few scenes in each book where the main character is risking everything for her values and friends, and I always find those scenes very emotional and exciting to write.

Tell us about your other published works.

I have two Thriller series, both under movie contracts (as is Magical Beasts); the Jack Steel series, and the Alex Sight series. I also have a long background in self-awareness and wrote SMILE MORE STRESS LESS, a book I highly value in my own life.

On what are you currently working?

Right now I’m writing the pitch bible for the movie contract on MAGICAL BEASTS. The pitch bible/deck is a short synopsis of book 1, Guardian The Choice, and then synopses for each of 10 one hour shows for the first season. You provide summaries of the later books for seasons 2-4. Each book would represent one season on a streamer like Netflix. I am also releasing another JACK STEEL thriller in April. Add in marketing, and it keeps me busy.

What book and/or author changed your life?

Donald Stephenson, Tolkien, and Alistair Maclean and Ludlum. All had thriller elements in their writing, and sent my imagination soaring. That flavored my later writing and life in many ways, since I also sought out adventure in my own life.

When not writing, what can we find you doing?

I love to swim, sail, hike, cook, hang out with family and friends.

What is one skill you wish you had?

I always kind of wished I could play guitar and sing for fun. I tried. I gave up. lol


Geoffrey Saign’s love of wildlife led him to write the award-winning fantasy series, Magical Beasts. He often experiences the magic of nature and wildlife while hiking and swimming. He has a degree in biology and has assisted in field research on hummingbirds and humpback whales. Geoff loves to sail big boats, hike, and cook—and he infuses all of his writing with his passion for nature. As a swimmer he considers himself fortunate to live in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, Minnesota. See what he’s up to at https://geoffreysaign.net/magical-beasts




Geoffrey Saign will be awarding a $30 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, April 5, 2021

He'll Be Waiting by Liz Alterman

 


It's a YA thriller you won't soon forget, even though the main character seems to have forgotten how she has gotten into her current predicament. Check out an excerpt from He'll Be Waiting and then download your own copy. Be sure to check out the rest of the tour for more and leave your questions and comments along the way. Best of luck entering the giveaway!



What would you do to remember? What would you give to forget?

When Tess Porter agrees to pick up her boyfriend’s college pal at the airport on a snowy December night, she has no idea she’s about to embark on the most dangerous ride of her life.

Two days later, the 17-year-old wakes up in a hospital with broken bones, unable to remember how she got there. Her parents are acting strange, and neither James, her boyfriend, nor her best friend, Izzy, has visited.

As she struggles to physically recover, Tess wrestles with haunting questions: What happened? Will her memory ever return? And what if she’s better off not recalling any of it?

Read an excerpt:
In my hand is a beautiful silver pocket watch on a long, delicate chain. It looks antique, but it’s been polished and shined to appear almost new again. 5:05 it reads. How can it be that late already? I glance at the clock on the mantle. 4:05. It’s been in there since before Daylight Saving Time ended in early November. But how did it get there? Who gave it to Mom? It’s ticking in my hand. A truth bomb. I read the note once more.

“I’m counting the minutes until we’re together again. I’m hoping you’re doing the same.”

I study it. No loops or swirls. This isn’t a woman’s script. Aside from the fact that someone is pretty eager to see Mom again, what does this mean? I haven’t a clue, but I do know this: That is not my father’s handwriting.

(affiliate link)


Liz Alterman lives in New Jersey with her husband and three sons. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Parents, McSweeney's, and other publications. She spends most days microwaving the same cup of coffee and looking up synonyms.

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LizAlterman

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/21164511.Liz_Alterman

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/liz-alterman

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/liz.alterman

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/elizabethalterman/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lizalterman/



Liz Alterman will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, April 2, 2021

The World of Mystic Invisible by Ryder Hunte Clancy

On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Mystic Invisible
By Ryder Hunte Clancy
Young Adult Fantasy
Paperback & ebook, 267 Pages
March 17, 2021 by Winter Goose Publishing

Scotland. Where fantasy, mystery, and folklore abound. A place of untold stories and forgotten paths.

A place where legends run awry.


Fifteen-year-old Monte moves to the mystically jeopardized Highlands of Scotland and discovers that life as a Celtic wizard is anything but easy. Whisperings of abnormal enchantments and vicious cat siths grip the small town he now calls home. Fear is at the helm and the instigator is unknown. An indefinite moratorium on magic is enforced. In a race against darkness, Monte and his friends must choose who to trust before time runs out, even if it means breaking some rules and facing danger head on.

(Affiliate links included.)


The World of Mystic Invisible

My husband was born and raised in Scotland, so much of the inspiration for Mystic Invisible was gleaned from my visits to his home country. When the idea for the story hit (like a blanket of bricks, I might add), I knew it needed to be set in this wondrous land. The culture, the scenery, the banter - it all deserved to be in a novel. There’s a reason my characters call it “The Land of True Enchantment.” It’s a place where fantasy, mystery, and folklore abound. A place of untold stories and forgotten paths. A place where legends run awry. Here’s a Mystic Invisible blurb to give you a little taste of what I’m talking about:

Whisperings of abnormal enchantments and vicious cat siths grip the scenic town of Ft. William, Scotland. Ben Nevis, the great mountain and guardian of the land, is sickened with a dark power that gets blacker by the day. The Mystics must gain control of the growing threats in the area before the Norms find out. Yet somehow Monte and his friends manage to conjure their own set of conundrums. During a time when Mystics are supposed to be invisible, they do just the opposite.

I hope you love reading about the world as much as I enjoyed writing about it!

  • Ryder


Tour Schedule

March 29th:
March 30th:
March 31st:
April 1st:
April 2nd:

About the Author


Ryder Hunte Clancy has lived most of her life in the desert but her heart belongs to the sea; her happy place, where brine and mist abound and allusive waves caress expansive stretches of compacted sand. A tried and true stay-at-home mom, she has just as much trouble keeping up with her fictional, teenage characters as she does her three small children. Mystic Invisible is her debut novel, the inspiration of which was gleaned from her husband’s homeland of Scotland, where fantasy, mystery, and folklore are rich and hints of adventure linger around every corner.


Tour Schedule


Tour Giveaway


One winner will receive a signed and personalized print copy of Mystic Invisible and a $20 Amazon gift card (US only)

Ends April 7, 2021

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