Monday, September 30, 2013

Cover Reveal! FALL - The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book Two by @AKMorgen


Chances, are you've already seen the lovely new cover for the new adult paranormal romance, FALL - The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book Two by A.K. Morgen (I'm a little slow on the uptake sometimes). But if not, feast your eyes on this...



It's coming SOON! Make sure you scroll down to the bottom to enter the giveaway!

Summary:

How do you save someone who doesn't want to be saved?

Those called to stand guard against the end are broken, and Sköll and Hati run free. Now Arionna Jacobs and Dace Matthews face a threat unlike any before. Ragnarök is coming and they aren't strong enough to stop it.

Arionna thought she understood sacrifice, but she never counted on her destiny tearing Dace apart. Ever since she nearly died, he has been consumed with guilt. Now it threatens to turn him into the monster he always feared.

It's up to Arionna to stop him before it's too late, but the path to hell is paved with good intentions, and Dace is hurtling toward self destruction. This time, Arionna isn't sure she can save him from himself. Can she convince him to let the past go, or is her true destiny to sacrifice her heart in exchange for the lives of the people she loves?

FALLThe Ragnarök Prophesies: Book Two will be available on October 5, 2013 from Curiosity Quills Press.

FADE – The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book One is available now at Amazon US, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and other major retailers.

About the Author:

A.K. Morgen lives in Little Rock, Arkansas with her husband, three dogs, and demonic cat. She has a graduate degree in Criminal Justice and Law, and plans to save the world some day. When she’s not writing, she spends her time teaching her niece and nephews how to cause mischief. You can also find her dancing in the grocery store, building a spork army, and fundraising for nonprofits close to her heart.

You can learn more about Ayden at http://akmorgen.com or by following her on Twitter, Goodreads, or Facebook.

Cover Reveal Giveaway:


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, September 27, 2013

Get a sneak peek at FALL, the sequel to FADE by A.K. Morden

A.K. Morgen

It's my honor to present an excerpt of the new adult paranormal romance, FALL - The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book Two by A.K. Morgen, which will release on 10/5/13! 

Ayden is an amazing person. Even as she struggles with illness in her own life, she continues to give back to others. Ayden and Curiosity Quills Press donated 10% of proceeds from FADE to both the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Arkansas and the March of Dimes for the first 6 months of publication. For FALL, she is holding a contest where you can nominate your favorite charity to benefit from the proceeds. Learn more here.

Don't forget to scroll down to the bottom to enter the giveaway!

Summary:

How do you save someone who doesn't want to be saved?

Those called to stand guard against the end are broken, and Sköll and Hati run free. Now Arionna Jacobs and Dace Matthews face a threat unlike any before. Ragnarök is coming and they aren't strong enough to stop it.

Arionna thought she understood sacrifice, but she never counted on her destiny tearing Dace apart. Ever since she nearly died, he has been consumed with guilt. Now it threatens to turn him into the monster he always feared.

It's up to Arionna to stop him before it's too late, but the path to hell is paved with good intentions, and Dace is hurtling toward self destruction. This time, Arionna isn't sure she can save him from himself. Can she convince him to let the past go, or is her true destiny to sacrifice her heart in exchange for the lives of the people she loves?

Excerpt:

I stood alone in a shadowy cavern, my legs trembling.
Ancient torches flickered around me, so brittle they looked as if a single touch would destroy them. Massive boulders shot upward in the eerie, inky light, standing like endless mountains barring my way. My gaze bounced across round and jagged alike, trying to pick out where one ended and the others began. I couldn’t tell the difference, though.
My attention drifted and skittered around the cavern, focusing everywhere except on what waited for me beyond the thick fingers of solid earth standing like the bars of a prison ahead. Soft, ominous rumbles sounded from that direction, so deep the cavern floor vibrated beneath my feet.
Run, Arionna. Run.
I fought to listen to the voice of reason urging me to flee for my life, but I couldn't seem to keep my legs locked in place. The compulsion to move, to look, to see, was too strong.
I took a step forward, then another, slipping through narrow cracks between one rock and the next. The rough surface scraped against my arms and tugged at my hair, pulling small strands away from my scalp. I kept moving though, squeezing between narrow openings until the craggy ground gave way, ending suddenly at a frothy river.
I glanced across the foamy water.
My lungs stopped functioning.
The endless spread of boulders scattered all around were tiny pebbles compared to the solitary mass of earth on the far side of the underground channel. A chain wound around and through the mountainous rock, so thin it was almost invisible to the eye.
I ran my gaze across the shimmering links, checking to ensure the magic bond still held firm.
It did.
Air shuddered into my lungs.
Don't be afraid. Don't be afraid, I chanted to myself, but when I turned my head, my heart pounded uncomfortably anyway.
I bit my lip to keep from crying out when my gaze landed on the monstrous black wolf lunging against the tiny chain. Foam ran in buckets down his chest and into the river around him, as if his hatred cut a canyon of desiccation through the rock like a knife through butter. He towered over me, taller and wider than any wolf I'd ever seen. He was a giant. A Titan.
Fenrir.
I shivered at the sound of his name echoing in my head.
He gnashed his razor-sharp teeth and roared, struggling against the chain binding him to earth. The sound echoed throughout the massive cavern, bouncing from rock to rock in the same deep, ominous rumble I heard earlier.
Pebbles showered down from overhead, falling to the dirt floor all around.
Fenrir shook them off, then tried to leap.
The chain stretched taut, groaning in protest, but it held firm.
Fenrir hit the ground―hard―and was up again in an instant.
He coiled, crouching as if preparing to spring again, then twitched.
He stilled, not even his chest moving when he drew breath. Sanity flickered in his gaze for a brief moment, burning away the obsessive rage pouring from him. What swept through those yellow eyes in its place was far worse: intelligence.
Fenrir knew his prison would not hold him forever. Eventually, he would break free.
Not today. Please, not today, I pleaded, hoping someone in charge heard me.
Fenrir sniffed the air.
I stopped breathing, praying he didn't see me standing amongst the rocks.
He turned his head slowly in my direction, one ear twitching.
His rage-filled gaze met mine and held. Recognition flared in his baleful eyes.
I trembled, trapped in his sights like a prisoner, unable to move. The wolf sharing my soul snarled, trying to shake herself free of the thrall freezing me in place. She was too weak to do more than flutter and twist inside me though.
Fenrir’s lip curled in a menacing snarl as he looked into me, looked through me, and saw everything I was and everything connecting me to him. For a moment, no more than a split second really, he looked pleased. As if he knew his wait was almost over.
And then rage blazed to life in his eyes again, wiping away recognition and replacing it with burning, poisonous hate.
He growled low in his throat, the sound that of a gathering storm.
The cavern floor vibrated beneath my feet again.
Pebbles showered down, striking my arms, my legs… my face. Each hit stung and burned.
The river of foam at my feet churned across the rocks like mini-tidal waves.
Dust filled the air in thick puffs, choking me.
Fenrir dove toward me, howling.

FALL – The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book Two will be available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble on October 5, 2013 from Curiosity Quills Press.  FADE – The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book One is available now at Amazon USBarnes and Noble, and Kobo.

About the Author:

A.K. Morgen lives in Little Rock, Arkansas with her husband, three dogs, and demonic cat. She has a graduate degree in Criminal Justice and Law, and plans to save the world some day. When she’s not writing, she spends her time teaching her niece and nephews how to cause mischief. You can also find her dancing in the grocery store, building a spork army, and fundraising for nonprofits close to her heart.

You can learn more about Ayden at http://akmorgen.com or by following her on TwitterGoodreads, or Facebook.

Blog Tour Giveaway:

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Friday, September 20, 2013

Big news! I just signed a publishing contract for my next novel.

I am thrilled to announce that I just signed a publishing contract! My sophomore novel, Destruction, will be published in 2014 by Curiosity Quills Press. Destruction is the first in a four book series about a family of dark wizards living in Houston.



David Vandergraff wants to be a good man. He goes to church every Sunday, keeps his lawn trim and green, and values God, family, and country. Unfortunately, being a dark wizard isn't a choice.

David loves his wife and kids more than anything, but he can't forget his other ones. Eleven years ago, his secret second family went missing, and no one knows about his loss. When he gets the call that his children have been found, he learns that their stepfather brutally abused them for years and then murdered their mother in front of them. Ready to make things right, David takes custody of his children even though it could mean losing the wife he can’t imagine living without.

Keeping his life together gets even more complicated when David's two missing children claim to be dark wizards and say that their mother and stepfather were dark wizards as well. David believes the children just use this fantasy to cope with their trauma, until David’s conservative Christian wife, Amanda, admits a secret of her own. Amanda tells David that they are both dark wizards, along with all of their children.

Now, he must learn to parent two hurting children from a dark world he doesn’t understand and try to keep his family from falling apart, all while dealing with the realization that everything he loves, including himself, may be evil.

Watch out for updates like the cover reveal and release date announcement on the new Destruction Facebook page HERE.

....and if you're wondering, I am also working on the sequel to The Charge, which will be titled, The Madness.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

World Building: Magic and Mayhem by Mara Valderran

Today I am pleased to welcome Mara Valderran, author of the new adult fantasy, Heirs of War -- released on 9/13!

Seventeen-year-old Zelene doesn't believe in magic or prophecies. When she's told she is part of the prophecy foretelling five powerful girls bringing peace to the war-torn worlds, she scoffs. The idea of other dimensions layered on top of the world she lives in is almost as ludicrous as the idea that she might be able to save them. After she is attacked by magic-wielding assassins, she finds she can't argue with reality.

As their enemies strike, the girls are taken back to their world and discover the ties binding them together. Rhaya has always had an uncanny knack for reading people, but can’t seem to unravel the mystery tying her to Isauria, the new friend she bonded with instantly. For years, Isauria has been dreaming of Terrena, a girl living her life on the run in a magical world ripped apart by the tragedies of war, completely unaware that she is psychically linked to the world she was born in.

Zelene views them all with a distrustful eye, familial bonds or no, and can think of a place or two she’d like to shove the crown she supposedly inherited. When she learns that her long-lost twin Ariana has been captured by the rebels, Zelene’s attitude changes. She doesn’t know how she is supposed to go against an army of magic-wielding rebels when her own ability to manipulate the elements is still locked within her. But can she trust the elders to rescue Ariana when it seems their medieval politics are what brought about the war in the first place? With all that is at stake, the answer becomes clear to Zelene.

Screw the worlds. She’s getting her sister back.

---

World building is a huge part of fantasy. As a writer, we want to have a clear image of what our world looks like. What kind of government rules over it, what kind of society our characters will be in. These issues are very important for building the story and discovering the conflicts the characters will face along the way.

But it’s very easy to get bogged down in the details. When I first started creating the world for Heirs of War, I wanted everything to be completely unique and make total sense. This was especially true for creating my magic system. Harry Potter was huge at the time, so I knew I wanted to stay away from wands. Gandalf already tapped the bad-assery of the staff, so that was out. And although I was fascinated by the Additive and Subtractive magic system Terry Goodkind created, I knew that wasn’t what I was aiming for either. I toyed with the idea of using physics in some way, but that became too complicated really fast.

Then I had a brilliant revelation. Gaelic! I would use the Gaelic language for all my magic. I dove into research, trying to find every book and website I could on how to speak Gaelic. I was brilliant! No one had thought of this before! Because, ya know, no one knows about the Gaelic language. Right?

Wrong. I shared my idea with a friend who has played the role of sounding board since the creation of this story. She also happens to be a voracious reader.  She nodded and said that was great and reminded her of this other series where they used Gaelic for spells.



She and I had a nice chat at that point. She helped me discover something very important: Coming up with a unique idea that no one else has used in any way is near impossible. And also, it’s not that important. She helped me to see that what is important is the story.

So I decided to keep it simple. I based my magic system on what is around the characters: Nature. I had already decided early on that each girl would represent a different point on the pentacle, so it made sense to use the elements they represent for magic.



Earth, Air, Fire, and Water each have their own unique gifts. Our bodies represent our ties to Earth, so Earth magic is healing magic. But the use of Earth magic can also be used against people, not just for healing. If the wielder is powerful enough, arms can be broken, or Earth can be used alongside Fire to cause terrible burns in a matter of seconds. But the magic they wield isn’t endless. The top point on the pentacle represents Spirit, our connection to the elements. What does this mean? It takes a toll on the wielder. They can’t just sit there for hours and hours pelting lightning bolts at people. I think of it a lot like a work out. They are using their magic muscles to wield the elements, but after a time they are going to run out of energy and those muscles are going to become too fatigued to work.


So what are you favorite magic systems? Do you prefer complex or simple magic in your fantasy stories?

---

Mara Valderran has been coming up with stories pretty almost since she could talk, often commandeering her brother's G.I. Joes to play out her fictional tales alongside her Barbies. Once she hit adolescence and realized playing with dolls wasn't cool anymore, she started putting her ideas to paper. And she hasn’t stopped since.

Mara is more than just a madwoman with a writing box. She lives in the south with her husband and demanding cat. She hopes to one day meet Daniel Jackson from SG1, or at least the actor who played him. When she’s not writing, you can find her reading, playing video games, or spending time at her favorite local coffee shop. 


Friday, September 13, 2013

EVADE Cover Reveal

I'm excited to share the lovely cover for EVADE, the sequel to EVER by Jessa Russo! Check this out....


Gorgeous! Come back on 10/21 when I'll be posting a review of Evade.

---

In this thrilling sequel to EVER, Ever Van Ruysdael's race to beat the odds—and the clock—begins with the introduction of an integral part of her past. As secrets are revealed, and truths uncovered, Ever learns her imminent death is the least of her problems: Ariadne did more than just put an expiration date on her life; she marked Ever's soul by upping its value for greedy collectors looking to buy their freedom.

Condemned by the countdown on her life, and hunted by hired Seekers, Ever’s journey leads her to question everything she’s known and everyone she’s trusted, while growing closer to the one person from her past she was determined to avoid—and the one guy she never could—Toby James.

With her ex-boyfriend by her side, and the countdown clock rapidly ticking away, Ever tries thwarting fate’s plans. But as her nineteenth birthday approaches, and desperate Seekers follow her every move, Ever may be too late.

A marked soul is hard to come by … and even harder to escape.

EVADE'S LINKS:

JESSA RUSSO'S LINKS:

GRAB A COPY OF EVER: Book One of The EVER Trilogy!

COVER CREDIT: 
Cover Photo: Face On By Tamara Website | Facebook | Twitter 

Friday, September 6, 2013

Meet Tara Tyler - coffee drinker, mom, and author of Pop Travel


Welcome, to the first half of an interview between myself and Tara Tyler as we conduct a two-way interview! Tara and I are interviewing each other on our blogs, half here and half at her place... Listen in as we start our chat! (Plus a cute picture on each blog!)

So, Sharon, thanks for having me over! I'm enjoying a yummy Heathbar Dunkin Donuts Kcup of coffee, what are you drinking?

That sounds really delicious. I'm drinking green tea with mint, but I'm more of a coffee girl. Too much so, which is why the green tea.

I just started reading Pop Travel, and although pop travel clearly has its drawbacks, it does sound kind of nice, too. If you could pop anywhere right now, where would you go?

Wow, I'm pretty wary of popping, myself! But I would pop to visit my parents and do book signings with all my friends all over the US!

Aww...popping back home. I like it. 

I've started reading The Charge. I love the alternate world where Texas has a King and has fought against the US! Plus the electric powers some of them have - wild! What gave you the idea for this book? (I know it's a traditional question, but your concept is so unique!)

It seems like a simple question, but I always have trouble with that one. There wasn't anything specific that gave me the idea for The Charge. It was just the product of lots of daydreaming to entertain myself that morphed into a book idea. Of course, I live in Texas and have magic electric powers, so that was probably part of it too.

Tell me about your main character in Pop Travel. What do you like best about him? What are his flaws?

Magic electric powers?! Are you a super hero in disguise? All I have is shock value. Ha!

My MC, Cooper is a great guy to root for. He has a tragic past that changed him from positive & outgoing to pessimistic & cynical. But he still defends those who need him and takes the obstacles thrown at him in stride. Love to talk about Coop!

I'd like to hear more about Lena! I love that she is dating the prez's son!

Lena's parents died in the bomb that nearly obliterated Texas and took down their government. Now, she's dating the son of the man who may have been responsible for the bombing. What I love about Lena is that she never takes the easy road. She stands by her beliefs and is bold enough to say anything to anyone.

Since you love to talk about Coop, here's another one. What do you and Cooper have in common? Would you get along if you knew each other in real life?

(for the second half of the interview and a cute pic of my boys, pop over to Tara's blog)

Cooper thought he could get through
life without having to pop...
Pop Travel by Tara Tyler
A tale of deception and teleportation.

When a distraught client enters J.L. Cooper's small town detective agency ranting about a pop travel teleportation cover up, Cooper takes the case. He blames pop travel indirectly for his wife's death and would love to expose a glitch in it.

But the glitch turns out to be disintegrating travelers. And now, his client is dead, his secretary is missing, and a hitman is stalking him. Plus there's all the webcams watching his every move. So, Cooper has to find a way to expose the deadly flaw, while using pop travel to escape the maniacs covering it up, not to mention save a couple of tag-alongs he's not sure he can trust. No problem.

Available now on Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Goodreads  <==>  Trailer  <==>  FB Author Page
After having a hand in everything from waitressing to teaching math to rocket engineering Tara Tyler now writes and teaches in Ohio with her three active boys and Coach Husband. In addition to her novels, she has published short stories and poetry in Science Fiction, Fantasy, Thriller, and Humor. So many stories to tell!

And here's a cute pic of Tara's boys (from 2006!)

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Happy Re-Release Day for EVER by Jessa Russo #EVERtrilogy

Happy Release Day, EVER! 

To celebrate EVER's rebirth, and Jessa Russo’s first step into the indie self-publishing world, she is giving you the first chapter of EVER for FREE! Yup! FREE! You can read along, decide if you want more, then click on one of the buy links below to grab a copy for yourself! *Paperbacks available soon!

Check out the FREE first chapter HERE


We're also having some fun on Twitter (details below), and Jessa has also compiled TWO prize packs of super awesome stuff! There will be one (1) lucky winner in the US, and one (1) lucky winner Internationally! Want to know what we’re giving away? 



***GIVEAWAY FUN!***

The winner(s) will receive the following items:


US ONLY Prize Pack (ONE winner):
Set of 4: custom Frankie4Ever / Toby4Ever Coasters (2 of each) + Signed EVER bookmarks +
Signed paperback copy of EVER by Jessa Russo (YA)
Complete set* of The Darkness Falls Trilogy e-books from Krystal Wade (YA)
*Includes WILDE'S FIRE, WILDE'S ARMY and WILDE'S MEADOW
Signed paperback copy of EYRE HOUSE by Cait Greer (NA, adult content)
Paperback copy of THE CHARGE by Sharon Bayliss (YA)
Paperback copy of SEALED WITH A CURSE by Cecy Robson (A, mature content)

INTERNATIONAL Prize Pack (ONE winner):
E-book of EVER by Jessa Russo (YA)
Complete set* of The Darkness Falls Trilogy e-books from Krystal Wade (YA)
*Includes WILDE'S FIRE, WILDE'S ARMY and WILDE'S MEADOW
E-book of THE CHARGE by Sharon Bayliss (YA)
E-book of BROKEN FOREST by Eliza Tilton (YA)
E-book of THE VALENTINE CHALLENGE by Marisa Cleveland (A, mature content)
E-book of THE GATHERING DARKNESS by Lisa Collicutt (YA)
E-book of 1,000 SLEEPLESS NIGHTS by Connie Michael

ENTER HERE:
a Rafflecopter giveaway | a Rafflecopter giveaway



***TWITTER FUN!***


We're also going to be tweeting a bit today, to celebrate not just EVER's re-release (hashtag: #EVERTrilogy), but also playing up a major theme of the book--Ever's love for her deceased best friend. We'll be tweeting the theme with the hashtag #IfICouldBringBack and then sharing who we would bring back and why, or what we'd do with them, etc.

So, sticking with EVER as my example, the main female character of the series may tweet something like this:

#IfICouldBringBack Frankie, I'd finally tell him the truth. That I've loved him since we were in diapers. #EVERTrilogy 

Who would you want to bring back? An old flame? A relative? Maybe a famous author or dignitary? Think about it and join in the fun on Sunday, 9/1/13! We'll see you on Twitter!



***BOOK DETAILS!***

EVER
The EVER Trilogy, Book One 
By Jessa Russo
September 1, 2013

Seventeen-year-old Ever’s love life has been on hold for the past two years. She’s secretly in love with her best friend Frankie, and he’s completely oblivious. Of course, it doesn't help that he’s dead, and waking up to his ghost every day has made moving on nearly impossible. 

Frustrated and desperate for something real, Ever finds herself falling for her hot new neighbor Toby. His relaxed confidence is irresistible, and not just Ever knows it. But falling for Toby comes with a price that throws Ever’s life into a whirlwind of chaos and drama. More than hearts are on the line, and more than Ever will suffer.

Some girls lose their hearts to love. 
Some girls lose their minds.
Ever Van Ruysdael could lose her soul.


Jessa Russo's Links:


Stay tuned for the second book in the trilogy, EVADE, set to release on October 1st, 2013! 
You can now add EVADE on Goodreads!





Remember to follow EVER's 9/1/13 re-release day FUN on Twitter with these hashtags: 


#EVERTrilogy
and 
#IfICouldBringBack