Tag Archives: Fiction Books

Welcome… Author, Shannon A. Thompson!

Good Morning Everyone,

Please help me give a warm welcome to author, Shannon A. Thompson, who has kindly participated in an interview to discuss her writing influences and current work.

I hope you all have a fabulous Friday!

Enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

Hi Shannon! How are you? Could you please tell everyone here a little bit about yourself and your work?

Hi, Nicole. I am good – currently, drinking some morning coffee. I am glad to be here, so hello to everyone!

I’m a young-adult author and poet, but I’ve also had military fiction published. I was 16 when my first novel was printed, and I haven’t stopped since. My passion is writing, but I ultimately hope to open an affordable art school where artists can meet professionals in their field.

 

You write YA and Fantasy stories. Do you think that there is more opportunities to write in this genre, due to its recent growing popularity?

As much as there are more opportunities, there are also more writers competing in these categories, so I think it can go both ways. That being said, if writing young-adult fantasy is your genre, keep at it!

 

What books/authors have you enjoyed reading over the years?

I love all kinds of books, which is probably why I write in so many genres. Memoirs are my current favorite to read, but I always make time for the young-adult genre. In fact, I’m currently reading a novel by Laurie Halse Anderson, author of “Speak.” Some of my favorite authors include Meg Cabot, Lauren Oliver, and Cassandra Clare, but that’s only the beginning of an always-growing list.

Is there a particular author and/or character that you would love to join for lunch, one day?

I would love to speak with Meg Cabot. I’ve always admired her style. She isn’t afraid to push the boundaries, especially with female characters. I think that’s why two of her paranormal series were my favorite as a teen. (1-800-Where-R-You and The Mediator)

If you could be any one of your characters, who would you choose and why?

That’s a difficult question to answer, because the character I choose is in a story that isn’t published yet (but might be soon.) I would pick her simply due to the world she is in. It’s a fascinating place to discover.

Do you have any new books being released?

I do! Seconds Before Sunrise, book 2 in The Timely Death Trilogy, releases on March 27, 2014. While the first novel, Minutes Before Sunset, focused on what is was like to be a part of the Dark in dire times, the second book will showcase the struggles of being a human in a paranormal world. It will also redefine fate, so expect a lot of action, some struggling romance, and a climax that will change everything.

 

Where can readers find you?

I have a website where I divulge my writing, editing, and publishing tips. http://shannonathompson.com

But I am also on

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Shannon-A-Thompson/495467393833780?ref=hl

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ShanAshleeT23

And more: http://shannonathompson.com/contact/

You can find my novels through all major retailers, but here’s the link to Minutes Before Sunset on Amazon to get you started: http://www.amazon.com/Minutes-Before-Sunset-Shannon-Thompson/dp/098931281X/ref=tmm_pap_title_0

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Welcome… Isobel Irons, Author!

Hi Everyone,

Please help me give a warm welcome to Isobel Irons. She kindly participated in an interview and is offering a giveaway for  a chance to win a free copy of her book!

Enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

 

1.       Hi Isobel! Thanks for stopping by the blog today. Can you please tell the followers here a bit about yourself and your work?

 

Absolutely! I’m something of a jack of all trades in the marketing and media realm. In college, I studied broadcasting and got really into independent film-making, then after I got married I traveled all over the world, working on various projects, collecting all these stories. It was only a matter of time before I started writing them down, first as spec scripts, then as novels.

 

I guess that’s what sets me apart in the publishing industry, because unlike most writers who outline and draft, I visualize and cast and storyboard my ideas before ever typing out the first words on the page. My first book WAKE FOR ME, was incepted (hehe) while watching Inception and chatting with my husband about how awesome it would be to stay in the dream world for long periods of time, until it started to become reality. My second book, which is an unrelated “mature YA” / New Adult contemporary retelling of Cinderella (but with way darker issues than housekeeping), is called PROMISCUOUS, and is kind of like Easy A meets Girls. (Not for the faint of heart, I promise.) I adapted that one from a set of journals I’d kept for a documentary on sexual abuse in America.

 

These days, I’m taking a break from standing behind the camera to write full time and do a podcast with my bestselling author friend, Elle Lothlorien, which is called the S&M (Self-Publishing and Marketing) Podcast with Maven & Minx (I’m Minx.) We also have a website, book and consultation firm where we teach people the attitudes and tools of successful self-publishing. You can read all about it at TheBookEscorts.com. *Shameless plug, sorry about that. The podcast is pretty funny, though, so if you’re an aspiring author you should definitely check it out.*

 

2.       Your book, Wake for Me, is about a young woman who finds the man of her dreams, while being in a coma. What inspired you to write this story?

 

Like I mentioned briefly above, the first seed was planted by Christopher Nolan’s Inception (he’s something of a hero of mine.) I loved the idea of lucid dreaming—of dreams you could learn to control, or at least be completely aware of—and thought it would be awesome to write a contemporary, non-paranormal retelling of Sleeping Beauty where the heroine was in a coma and forced to run around in a dream until she couldn’t tell the difference between that world and reality anymore. And of course, because I’ve always had a bit of a girly side, I had to make it a romance.

 

3.       The main character, Viola Bellerose, has a very unique name. How did you pick that name for her?

 

The main character’s name was a cross between my favorite character in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night(BTW in case you’re not familiar, Viola is the sassy and badass girl who dresses up like a dude and accidentally falls for her boss—such a kick ass story, especially for that time period) and yet another cheeky nod to the fact that WAKE FOR ME is loosely, loosely based on Sleeping Beauty. Bellerose…Briar Rose. Get it? There’s a couple of other sneaky references in there, which I won’t spoil for you here. But I LOVE it when readers message me on Facebook and tell me they’ve found them, my little Fairy Tale Easter Eggs. Hmmm, that gives me an idea: I might have to do a contest at some point in the future, centered around those little tidbits. (Psst. Friend me on Facebook if you want to be in the loop for such contests in the future.)

 

4.       Did you read a lot of romantic suspense novels growing up? What books/authors do you like to re-read often?

 

Oh, God, yes. When I was in college, I went through a huge phase where I just devoured everything I could get my hands on by Tami Hoag, Linda Howard, Suzanne Brockmann, Allison Brennan, Lisa Jackson…the list goes on, but I don’t want to bore you guys. Suffice it to say, I had a very unhealthy obsession with ‘Oh no, we almost died just then, let’s have sex’ scenes for a while, there.

 

Nowadays, though, I read pretty much everything. I beta read a lot for my fellow authors, too, which means on any given week I’ll be blitzing through some chick lit, some paranormal YA, some edgy NA books like the ones I write, and even a novel in verse (which is surprisingly easy to read, once you get the hang of it, and soooo beautifully written.)

 

Yeah, I love me some books.

 

5.       What are your writing plans for 2014? Will you be releasing any books this year?

 

My fellow authors like to laugh at me for my grand ambitions, but so far I’ve been averaging a book release a month. Can I keep this going? Probably not. But until the caffeine runs out of my system and my mind no longer buzzes with ideas for the next story, and the next, I’ll keep writing…until it kills me, probably.

 

*Ahem* And the non-crazed sounding answer to your question is, “Why yes. Thank you for asking. My next book, SAY ANYTHING (the ‘sequel’ to WAKE FOR ME, kind of) comes out in April 2014. Keep an eye on my website, isobelirons.com for updates!

 

6.       Where can everyone find you?

 

Website: http://isobelirons.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Isobel-Irons/187776254741611?ref=hl

Twitter: https://twitter.com/IsobelIrons

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/isobelirons/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7389142.Isobel_Irons

 

7.       Do you have anything that you would like to ask me or the followers here?

Absolutely! Here goes. *Clears throat, straightens ironic hipster glasses, dons look of attempted seriousness, fails* Would you like to win a FREE copy of WAKE FOR ME? If so, click here:

 

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/429fdb5/

 

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Crimson Footprints III Blog Tour

To See my review of Crimson Footprints 1, click here.

Purchase Link:

http://www.amazon.com/Crimson-Footprints-III-Delphine-Publications/dp/0991022882/ref=pd_sim_b_1

 

Author:

shewanda
Cover:

TAMIKA_CRIMSON6

Excerpt:

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Filed under Guest Posts

What are you reading?

Hi Everyone,

After spending the other day, getting the new site up and running, I decided to spend the next two days reading. This morning, boys and I curled up and gathered the books, and read a total of 10 pages, before we were interrupted. (figures.) I am currently reading The Book Thief for My Sister’s Books and Other Systems from The List. What are you all reading? Do you have any special holiday themed books planned for next week?

I just wanted to take a quick minute and thank you all again for your continued support. I really appreciate it. Have a wonderful night!

Enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

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Filed under About Me

Girl Meets Underworld

By: Jess Watkins. Format: eBook. Read: November 2013.

Stella is severely depressed and alone, after losing both her mother and brother to an animal attack. Faced with no other choice, she decides to end her pain and reunite with her family, by jumping off the roof of a building. That is until a guy appears next to her, then jumps and survives! Turns out this guy, Conner is a vampire and even though he seems very friendly, Stella is afraid that a vampire is the one who killed her family. Still, there is something about Conner and she knows she can trust him. But things get a little crazy when her friends introduce her to a new guy named Will, who seems to be very inconsiderate and hot-tempered. Conner warns her that Will is dangerous, but he is just a human… Isn’t he?

This book is a very, fast and fun read. The pace of the book is very quick, especially in the beginning. Both the plot and the characters could have used more time to be developed thoroughly. However, the ending will leave readers shocked and gasping out loud. The plot also seems a bit too familiar at times, and it will have readers comparing it to other popular vampire novels. The setting is never clearly identified, but it seems to take place in Europe. Although the author’s writing style is very fluid and easy to follow. Overall, fans of the infamous Vampire-Werewolf love triangle, will enjoy this book.

Are you a fan of YA Vampire novels? If so, what’s your favorite series?

Note:
The author provided a copy of this book for me to review. To learn more about this author and her work, please visit her website.

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Filed under Romance Books, Young Adult Books

And the Winner is…

Hi Everyone,

I was supposed to announce the winner of the Stacy Juba eBook giveaway on Wednesday, but sadly I was under the weather with a terrible migraine that day. Then, well yesterday proved to be an eventful Thanksgiving with no time to get online, which leads me to today. I want to thank everyone who participated in the giveaway. I would also like to give a special thanks to Stacy Juba for participating in the interview and offering a giveaway.

The answers to the Bonus Questions are:
1. Top Teenage Detective?
a. Nancy Drew
b. The Hardy Boys
c. Clue kids
d. Other

D. Trixie Belden

2. If you could have any one/two of the sixth senses, which would it be?
In Dark Before Dawn, I talked about the sense of psychic hearing, which I described as asking a question of the universe and hearing a response in your thoughts. I see it as an inner road map of knowing what to do so you can make the best decisions. I think that to some degree, we all have this ability, but first we need to clear our mind so that we can hear it, and second we have to trust it. I’d like to develop this sense some more. Not to the extent of Dawn in Dark Before Dawn though – I don’t want to hear anyone’s thoughts! Well, maybe that might be helpful to hear what people were thinking of me….no, I probably wouldn’t like that very much!

Since there were two people who entered in the contest, I went to Random.org and entered the parameters 1 and 2. Congratulations goes to comment #1. Congratulations, Claire!!! You have until December 7th at 11:59pm to contact me to claim your prize. You can select either Sink or Swim or Dark Before Dawn. Congrats!!!

Enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

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Welcome… Author, Stacy Juba!!!

Good Morning Everyone,

I would like for you all to help me welcome author Stacy Juba. She is a very talented author of several different genres that I have had the pleasure of reading. To read my reviews click on the title of the book: Face-Off, Twenty-Five Years Ago Today, Sink or Swim, Dark Before Dawn, Teddy Bear Town Bundle.

I hope you all enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

1. Hi Stacy, thanks for hanging out on the blog today. Could you please tell the followers here a little bit about yourself?

Thanks for hosting me! I’m a wife, mom, and former journalist for a daily newspaper. I have always loved to read books and write stories, and was writing my own “mystery series” in fifth grade. I have published books for adults, teenagers and children, and the one theme all the stories have in common is that the characters are at a crossroads in their lives. They are at a fork in the road where they can either stay on the safe and predictable path, which hasn’t been serving them too well, or take a new and riskier path toward a more fulfilling future. On my blog from time to time, the “reporter” in me likes to highlight resources that can help my readers to build their own characters, featuring topics such as meditation, parenting and self improvement. I have written a lot of health articles over the years for various publications, as health and wellness are personal interests of mine.

2. I read all sorts of genres, depending on my mood or what is on The List. What is it like for you, as a writer, to write various tales directed at different audiences?

I basically come up with book ideas based on the mood I’m in at the time. My upcoming novel, Fooling Around With Cinderella, is a light and sparkly romantic comedy/sweet romance. I just felt like writing something light and fun, and I see myself going more in that direction down the line. For Twenty-Five Years Ago Today, I wanted to write something more introspective with a “Wow” ending. I felt like surprising readers. With my reality TV mystery Sink or Swim, I wanted to write an entertaining and suspenseful beach read that was lighter than Twenty-Five Years Ago Today. The adult books come more naturally to me than the books for younger readers, but the teen and children’s books are a nice change of pace once in awhile. Writing about different characters and for different audiences keeps me from being bored. And if I’m having fun writing the story, I hope readers will have fun reading it.

3. What was the first children’s book you remember re-reading as a child?

I remember reading a Bobbsey Twins book called The Dune Buggy Mystery and thinking that I had to reread it as soon as I finished. Then I realized it was a series. I read all the series books I could find, such as The Bobbsey Twins, Happy Hollisters, Dana Girls, Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Judy Bolton, and Trixie Belden books as I could keep revisiting the same characters again and again. I also had a fondness for Beverly Cleary’s Ramona books and read those more than once.

4. Who are on your top list of must-read mystery authors?

I always look for new books by Lisa Gardner, Iris Johansen and Heather Graham. They fall more along the lines of romantic suspense. I also like Joann Fluke’s Hannah Swenson mysteries as they are light and quick reads (and they inspire me to bake!) and I’ve read most of Denise Swanson’s Scumble River Mysteries and Donna Andrews’ Meg Langslow series .

5. What can readers expect to see from you in the future?

They can look for my romantic comedy/sweet romance novel Fooling Around With Cinderella in 2014, and I plan to write spinoff stories featuring minor characters from the book. I also plan to work on my Face-Off sequel, Offsides, which I wrote when I was a teenager and need to rewrite, as well as finish a mystery novel that was a recipient of the William F. Deeck Malice Domestic Grant which was presented at the Agatha Awards. I have a lot of ideas to keep me busy!

Bonus Questions:

1. Top Teenage Detective?

a. Nancy Drew

b. The Hardy Boys

c. Trizie Belden

d. Other

2. If you could have any one/two of the sixth senses, which would it be?

Links:
Website: http://stacyjuba.com/blog/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Stacy-Juba/100155471301

Twitter: https://twitter.com/stacyjuba

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2988212.Stacy_Juba

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/stacyjuba/

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Stacy-Juba/e/B002OXLSDE/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/stacy-juba

Giveaway Time:
For your chance to win a copy of Sink or Swim or Dark Before Dawn, just leave a comment below between now and November 26, 2013 @ 11:00pm EST. Each comment will count as one entry, if you decide to answer the bonus questions, any correct answers will count as 2 entries. Winner will be selected using Random.org and announced on November 27, 2013. Good luck everyone!

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Welcome… Author Julia McDermott!

Good Morning Everyone,

Please help me give a warm welcome to author, Julia McDermott. She is here today to answer a few questions about her latest book, Underwater. Plus she has a few questions for everyone here.

Enjoy!
~Ariesgrl

*********
1. Hi Julia. Could you please tell my followers a little bit about yourself and your book Underwater?

Hi, Nicole! Thanks for having me! I was born in Dallas, grew up in Atlanta, and went to UNC-Chapel Hill, spending my junior year abroad in the South of France. I’m married with four almost-grown children, and my family has lived in Dallas, Detroit, Wichita, and Atlanta, where we’ve been since 2000. I write full-time, belong to the Atlanta Writers Club and a wonderful writers’ group, and am always looking for people with whom to practice my French. I love writing, reading, the beach, autumn, football, the holidays, most kinds of art, and all things French.

Underwater is my second novel and was released in August 2013. It’s the story of a super-wealthy Atlanta businesswoman, Candace Morgan, whose ne’er-do-well brother, Monty Carawan, guilts her into funding a luxury home for him to renovate and flip just before the real estate market takes a dive. Candace believes that by “helping” Monty, she’s fulfilled a decades-old promise and righted a wrong turn in her past. But when the housing market plunges even further, the tension between her and Monty rises to a boiling point, and she finds herself roped into a desperate, downward spiral of deceit. Monty’s wife Helen strives to keep their marriage afloat as rough seas threaten their young family, and her own demons rise to the surface.

Underwater looks at the powers of jealousy, greed, and shame, and tests the limits of generosity, in a long-held family pattern of enabling, as stakes rise to a crescendo.

2. What inspired you to dive into writing?

My dream to become a writer was born in the 7th grade, when my class was assigned to write a novel, and my classmates liked my story the best. However, I put that dream on the back burner, and after college, I worked in the banking and software industries before staying home to raise my children. As they grew, I read everything from classics to commercial fiction, often wondering how my favorite authors came up with their characters and plots, and what it was about their stories that made me sad to arrive at the last page.

When my youngest child was twelve, I considered my dream to become a writer, and at the start of the school year, I sat down to a blank computer screen and began. I finished the draft in the spring and began revisions, joined a writers’ group, attended workshops and revised some more. I kept reading a variety of fiction and began writing Underwater about a year before my first novel, Make that deux was released.

3. Underwater focuses on sibling dynamics. Do you have siblings and if so, are there any characters/characteristics based on your family?

I have a sister who is five years older, and a brother six years younger, but the siblings in Underwater are not based on them. I’ve known siblings close in age who are very competitive, and whose relationships are sometimes tense. I drew on these observations to create the relationships between Candace and Monty, and to a lesser extent, Helen and Dawn. Sibling rivalries have been written about since the story of Cain and Abel and the plays of Shakespeare, and I find the dynamics of siblings fascinating.

4. (Question from a follower) How important are your characters’ names and how do you name them?

My characters’ names are very important. I chose an unusual, strong but feminine name for the main character, Candace. I wanted many other characters’ names to suggest something about them: Helen, Dawn, Frank, Rob, Jack, Deirdre, Beau, Rich, Chip and Sonny. I chose Monty for two reasons: I wanted a name that ends in a long “e” sound, and if you change one letter, “Monty” becomes “money.” I decided on several other names only because I like them: Adele, Lucy, Darlene, Ginger, Wendy, Elena, and Julia.

5. Do you have any other books available or plans for future books?

My “New Adult” Romance/French Travel novel, Make that deux was published in October 2012. I am writing a work of creative nonfiction, which I plan to release next summer or fall, and I’m in the planning stages of my next project, another Suspense novel.

6. Where can readers find you and your books?

Find me on my:

Website: http://makethatjulie.wordpress.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JuliaC.mcdermott

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MakeThatJulie

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/julia-mcdermott/18/95a/b45

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6557107.Julia_McDermott

Find my books on Amazon, Kindle and other e-readers, and order them at any bookstore! Here are the links for Amazon:

Underwater
Make That Deux

7. Is there anything you would like to ask the followers or me?

How do you find your next book to read? If you read a book you enjoy, do you tell friends and acquaintances about it, what you liked about it, and where to buy it? When you delve into a book, are you curious about the author, and how the story came to be written? Or do you prefer just to escape into the world created by a story?

******

To answer Julia’s questions, I read any and everything. I am grateful to have several sources for finding my next read, but I like to follow authors’ websites, in order to stay up to date on new releases. There is nothing better than discussing a great book with friends. I like “finding” new to me authors and learning more about them and their work. What about all of you?

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Hopping the Boxes

 photo HopBoxFina_zps6d0ffea8.jpg

Welcome to my stop for Hoppin the Boxes Today I’ll be featuring

Barbara Silkstone

But -
There are Over 60 stops – with plenty of excerpts, information and a giveaway!
These Eight Authors are presenting their Boxed Sets with Excerpts, Character Bios, and Prizes
Barbara Silkstone with the Wendy Darlin Tomb Raider Boxed Set
Cheryl Bradshaw with the Sloan Monroe Boxed Set
Christy Hayes and the Golden Rule Bundle
Donna Fasano and the Single Daddy Club Boxed Set
Faith Mortimer and the Diana Rivers Mystery Set
M.P. McDonald and the Mark Taylor Omnibus
Melissa F. Miller and the Sasha McCandles Series
Sibel Hodge and the Sibel Hodge Box Set
This tour will run from 11 – 18 November
Giveaways!
Reader drawing is international
Grand Prize Winner : $60 Giftcard to Amazon or Barnes and all eight boxed sets
First Prize Winner: $40 Giftcard and all eight box set
Second Prize winner – 4 (winner’s choice) boxed sets

(see the giveaway tool at the bottom of the post!)

And now.. I present

Silkstone Box Set photo SilkstoneBOX_zps7c408af3.jpg

Wendy Darlin’ Tomb Raider Box Set ~ Purchase NOW: Amazon

 

Contains the Three full-length novels:

WENDY AND THE LOST BOYS ~ Book One See the trailer on YouTube

Real estate agent for Miami Beach millionaires, Wendy Darlin, clashes with “SEC Investigator” and world famous archaeologist, Roger Jolley. He follows her out to sea on a mega-yacht owned by Charlie Hook, a Ponzi swindler on the run from federal agents and angry investors. Despite her fear of water, she finds herself a tomb raider on the Caribbean one step ahead of modern day pirates. Will she find the Lost Boys? Will she escape Hook’s clutches? And whom will she find on Nevis Island? Oh… and is Roger a good kisser?

LONDON BROIL ~ Book Two See the trailer on YouTube

When we last saw Wendy Darling and Roger Jolley in WENDY AND THE LOST BOYS, they were hot on the trail of Egyptian icons stolen from the British Museum. Wendy is now in a frantic race against time and a murderer as she searches for the last Lost Boy hidden somewhere in London while a killer heat wave invades the city. Wendy is held captive over a fish ‘n’ chips shop while Roger’s life is threatened. Can Wendy escape her captors, rescue Roger, and find the missing Lost Boy before the murderer strikes again?

CAIRO CAPER ~ Book Three See the trailer on YouTube

Part-time tomb raider and full-time real estate broker, Wendy Darlin joins her lover, archaeologist Roger Jolley, in a quest for Cleopatra’s tomb. All they have to do is get from Cairo to the Temple of Taporisi Magna alive. Armed only with a couple of hijacked ashtrays and faced with a trek across the blazing Sahara desert can Wendy out-maneuver Russian oligarchs, a dozen Dark Force mercenaries, and Roger’s chubby ex-girlfriend in time to find the tomb and seal it before chaos erupts in Egypt?

Excerpt from Wendy and the Lost Boys ~ Purchase Now: Amazon § Audible

The suite door flew open and Kit dove in. In my run for cover, I had forgotten about him. His 6’4” gym-toned body was almost naked except for a lavender Speedo and coconut scented tanning oil. He slid to a stop beside me with his fingers in his ears. We stayed in that position until blessed silence engulfed us. The blast had lasted only two minutes, but my head ached and my eyes throbbed.

Kit looked at my lifejacket/black bikini combo. “You look like a bumblebee.”

I waved the .38.

“Honey, don’t point that thing at me.” His eyes shifted to the open door.

A man in a wetsuit and goggles, carrying an M16 stepped in. There wasn’t a mask in the world that could disguise his face. It was my ex-husband Croc, grinning like the fool that he was. “You look like a bumblebee.”

I leveled my gun at him.

He snorted. “Yeah. I’m really scared. How’ve you been, kid?”

I’d never have imagined he’d take to the sea. “What the devil are you doing?”

“We’re here to get Hook’s treasure.”

“You and some Somali pirates?”

He snorted. “He’ll wish that all he had to worry about was Somali pirates. I have most of the brokers from my old hedge fund with me.”

“Ooohh, that should do it. Fierce hedgie marauders, much scarier than those psycho Somalis.”

Croc glared at me. “You’re right. We are much scarier because that bastard ruined our lives and backed us into a corner. Hook and his treasure are our only way out. And you’re going to help us. Where does Hook have it hidden?”

“I wouldn’t tell you if I knew. You’re scum like he is.”

“Don’t test my good nature. I’m going to get back what’s mine and that might include you.”

It was useless talking to him when he got this way.

“By the way, sorry about Marni dying from radiation.”

He didn’t look sorry, and he knew too much. Something was fishy. “How –?”

Croc pulled off his goggles leaving a red mark straddling the bridge of his nose. “Got you bugged,” he smirked.

I frisked myself for hidden microphones.

“Want some help?” He touched my breast.

When I smacked him, his eyes spun like slot machine cherries. He spoke slowly as he rubbed his jaw, “I’ll be back after we search the ship. One of my boys will be in to guard you.”

“You numb nuts.” I yelled at his back as he turned to leave. He looked like a giant black Gumby.

“Don’t call me numb nuts! And don’t yell at me!”

Excerpt from London Broil ~ Purchase Now: Amazon § Audible

I woke the next morning to the overpowering smell of curry and lamb. Yuck. I buried my face in the pillow. Whatever happened to a good old English breakfast of bangers, rubber eggs, and fried bread?

My nerves were rubbing on imaginary broken glass as I sidled to the kitchen. The curry pot bubbled away unattended. A blob of red sauce had spilled on the floor, and a kitchen knife lay next to it. I shut off the pot, bent down and picked up the knife. Then I realized it wasn’t red curry on the floor. The spot was a bloody footprint. I dropped the knife. It bounced on the floor. Adrenalin rocketing through my body, the brassy taste of fear filled my mouth.

Whoever left the footprint had to be nearby… perhaps in the pantry. The back door was slightly open. I could see Holly and Hildy standing with their heads near the door, waiting for their breakfast. Some watch-geese.

Should I call the police? What would I report? Unattended curry, a bloody footprint, and a kitchen knife with my fingerprints on it? I should have known better than to touch lonely hot pots and sticky red knives. But they don’t teach you that in real estate school, and I was learning tomb raiding on the job.

Thud! And again another thud! The noise sounded as if it came from the wine cellar. I thought to call out to Samuel, but reconsidered. I remained unsure about the virtues of the houseman, and the bloody knife on the floor made me even less confident.

I snuck up the six flights to Benny’s room and knocked on his door, once, then twice. No answer. Ever so slowly I opened it. Benny’s bed was made. Had he gotten up early or hadn’t it been slept in? I checked his bathroom and closet. Roger’s client had vanished. I’d screwed up my first archaeological assignment.

Stepping as lightly as I could, I made my way down two flights to my room. I slipped inside and turned the lock, then made a mad dash to the closet to pack my suitcase. Pausing, I realized my luggage would make too much noise and slow me down. I’d seen too many horror movies. I knew the bad guy – if there was a bad guy – was lurking under the stairs or in the foyer. They always are. Screw my suitcase.

I found a black plastic trash bag on the closet shelf. Perfect. I threw three designer outfits in it, tossed in some sandals, my toiletries, and knotted the end. I gently pitched the bag out the window onto the shrubs directly below in the garden. I had no intention of leaving without a few of my St. John dresses. I’d worked too hard to pay for them.

I eased my way down two flights of stairs, quietly entered the bedroom over the shrubs, and closed the door behind me. I tried to raise the window. It was painted shut but gave way with a screech to my lifting.

The trellis came up to the bottom of the windowsill. It might not hold my weight, but those prickly dry shrubs just below should cushion my fall. Carrying my purse, I grabbed the frail woodwork like a demented musketeer. Unfortunately, the ground came up rather quickly.

“Ouch!” said a strange voice as I landed on something round and boney.

Benny had called this place a garden of constant surprise. I had just encountered one.

Excerpt from Cairo Caper ~ Purchase Now: Amazon § Audible

I dozed briefly and woke to find Roger, still naked, quietly pacing in the dark between the bed and the wide-open balcony doors. Occasionally a moonbeam would highlight his body. The hung and the restless. He stopped pacing and cocked his head. I started to speak but he waved me off with a finger to his lips.

A voice carried in from the upper deck. Whoever was up there spoke Russian. Then silence.

I felt naked for two reasons. First, I was. Second, I was unarmed. I pulled the sheets up to my chest and shivered despite the heat. I groped around on the nightstand for the marble ashtray till I felt it’s cool surface. I exhaled softly. Now I was only naked-naked.

With a light thump someone landed outside the doorway. What was it with Egyptian balconies?

Roger assumed an Inspector Clouseau-like karate stance that gave me absolutely no confidence. This wasn’t the set of The Pink Panther. I tightened my grip on the ashtray.

A tall figure slipped into the room. The person was backlit so I couldn’t tell much about him except that he had broad shoulders and was half a head taller than my bedmate.

“Key-yah!” Roger yelled as he jumped the prowler and took him down. They were tied in the cursing department with an equal number of Russian and English epithets coming out of the cartoon-like tangle of arms and legs rolling around. Roger would be on top for a second, then the Russian. I hesitated. I could bop Roger as easily as the intruder. The Russian yelped when he missed Roger’s head and slammed his fist into the floor.

As the Russian sucked on his wounded knuckles, Roger separated from him and jumped to his feet. The Russian did the same. Roger hopped back and forth jabbing little punches in the air but not connecting. He should have learned how to handle himself better than that watching me duke it out with Darcy.

Horus’s squawking added to the chaos. He beat his wings against the cage.

The Russian said something that sounded like good night. He socked Roger in the jaw and my guy went down.

A banshee couldn’t have matched the sound I made as I leaped off the bed and nailed the Russian on the noggin with the marble ashtray. He went down face-first with a thud. A black semi-automatic pistol dropped from his hand.

I helped Roger stand. He swayed in front of me. “Why’d you hit him? I was winning.”

“Right.” I stepped back and my foot landed on the gun. I held my breath. When it didn’t go off, I carefully placed it in the nightstand drawer. Ashtrays, not guns, were my thing. I switched on the nightstand light.

Roger had quit swaying and his eyes were focused. I said, “Let’s get some cord and tie this guy up.”

A coil of rope attached to a life preserver hung just outside the door. Roger grabbed it while I pushed up the prowler’s cuffs to get at his thick wrists. I tied triple-knots on each arm, and looped a double knot with a bow at his back. I didn’t have enough rope to tie his feet. There was something kinky, but not sexy, about tying up a stranger while my lover and I were naked.

About the Heroine: Wendy Darlin

Until last year Wendy Darlin was a full-time real estate agent for Miami Beach millionaires. Then she met Roger Jolley, world famous archaeologist, Johnny Depp look-alike, and at times the most irritating person on the planet. Her heart, snarky mouth, and comedic capers keep her in constant peril. She’s been told her life is like the movie Romancing the Stone, but at times she feels more like Indiana Jones with boobs.

Follow Wendy at Facebook

 

About the Author: Barbara Silkstone

Barbara Silkstone is the best-selling author of the Wendy Darlin Tomb Raider Series that includes: Wendy and the Lost Boys, London Broil, Cairo Caper. Her Criminally Funny Fables series includes: The Secret Diary of Alice in Wonderland, Age 42 and Three-Quarters; Wendy and the Lost Boys; Zo White and the Seven Morphs, and Cold Case Morphs.
Silkstone’s writing has been described as “perfectly paced and pitched – shades of Janet Evanovich and Carl Hiaasen – without seeming remotely derivative. Fast moving action that shoots from the hip with bullet-proof characterization.”
Follow Barb at Website § Blog § Facebook § Twitter § Goodreads § Pinterest

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Grand Prize Winner : $60 Giftcard to Amazon or Barnes and all eight boxed sets
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Chasing Terpsichore Blog Tour

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chasingterpsichore

Blurb:

When a goddess lands in modern times there’s bound to be trouble.

Banished from her home in Olympus and trapped in modern day Australia, Terpsichore does her best to fit in, but when she is mistaken for a prostitute she needs the services of straight- laced solicitor James Barrington to help.

James Barrington is a man on a fast track to a stellar legal career. Being involved with a pole dancing tango teacher is not part of the plan.

Together they fight a Titan rebel and a journey through the Underworld but can they find each other on the way?

Contact Maggie:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/maggiemitchellwrites?ref=hl

Twitter: https://twitter.com/mmitchellwrites

Website: http://maggiemitchell.net/home/

About the author:

Maggie Mitchell lives in her dream place by the sea. Of course, sometimes she even gets the dreams written down in a story. Lucky for her she has a musician for a husband who understands the creative spirit. In her other life she teaches undergraduate university nursing students and designs eLearning courses for health organisations. Most days you’ll find her out on her balcony enjoying a glass of Moscato or a cappuccino made on her beloved espresso machine.

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