Author Archives: Carrie

SPOTLIGHT & GIVEAWAY: Roxy Rogers: Your Destiny is Calling by Emily Siskin-Toy

Roxy Rogers cover

 

About the Book

Title: Roxy Rogers: Your Destiny is Calling | Author: Emily Siskin-Toy | Illustrator: Brian C. Krümm | Publication Date: August 24, 2014 | Publisher: Three-Bug Books | Pages:32 | Recommended Ages: 6 to 9

Summary:

What happens when a young girl with a Hall of Fame baseball pedigree breaks the family mold and follows her dream to become a soul singer? “Roxy Rogers: Your Destiny Is Calling”, a picture book for ages 6 – 9, lets children see that their families will love them just the same when they pursue their true passions in life.

Everybody in Roxy’s family–from her great-grandpa (played with Lou Gehrig), to her grandpa (played with Jackie Robinson), to her mother (super-star college softball player), to her father (was a Los Angeles Dodger), to her sister (won a Gold Medal for Team USA Softball, and so on)–famously played ball, and Roxy is next in line. The only problem is that Roxy dreams of singing soul music like her idol, Aretha Franklin!

A historical addendum provides information about the Hall of Fame baseball players who turn up in the book, as well as Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul music. Additionally, a fun treasure hunt for clues about Roxy’s true destiny runs throughout the book, giving readers an enhanced, interactive experience.

 

Sneak Peek

Roxy Rogers Inside Page 3

Roxy Rogers Inside Page 2

Roxy Rogers Inside Page 1

 

Purchase

Amazon (Kindle) | Amazon (Print) | Kobo | iTunes

 

The Early Buzz

“I just LOVED this little book. Empowering for young girls, and at the same time powerful for young boys… The illustrations are perfect for this book: fun and eye-grabbing, and I also love that it includes facts about popular icons like Aretha Franklin and Baseball legends. Well done! ” ~ 5 Star Review, Mariana L., Amazon

“Roxie Rogers is an inspiring read for all ages, truly. It speaks to that little voice inside all of us telling us “come out” to the real you. The artwork brings the story to life, and the text is great for read-along or for young readers on their own.” ~ 5 Star Review, Laura, Amazon

“I just read Roxy Rogers to my 5-year old daughter and we both loved the book! The story was fun and engaging filled with dynamic illustrations. Besides the great life messages woven into the story, I really like how the story reads. It is really nice to experience a children’s book that is not mind numbing in its repetitiveness (you know the type) with words that flow easily off the pages. ” ~ 5 Star Review, Wendigo, Amazon

 

About the Author: Emily Siskin-Toy

Emily Siskin-ToyA U.C. Santa Cruz banana slug alum, Emily Siskin-Toy launched her writing career with posts at various film and television magazines in Los Angeles. After a break in the action to raise her daughter, Emily and her college sweetheart founded WOW! Music Studios, a successful children’s music instruction school in Mill Valley, California.

But just like the character in her book, Emily’s true passion was something entirely different; she always dreamed of writing children’s books. Inspiration was everywhere for Roxy Rogers: Your Destiny Is Calling. While coaching her daughter’s youth softball and basketball teams, Emily eventually came to realize that the world of sports was a passion of hers, not her daughter’s, who really wanted, of course, to be a singer. The plot of the story was right in front of her, and the surrounding details would be cultivated from her lifetime of love for the rich history of Major League Baseball and her daughter’s love of music.

 

Website | Author Blog | Pinterest | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

 

* Book Blast Giveaway *

Amazon $50 Gift Card

Prize: One winner will receive a $50 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)

Contest closes: October 30, 11:59 pm, 2014

Open to: Internationally

How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.

Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the Emily Siskin-Toy and is hosted and managed by Renee from Mother Daughter Book Reviews. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send and email to Renee(at)MotherDaughterBookReviews(dot)com.

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REVIEW: Bingo Summer by Dawn Malone

Bingo Summer

by Dawn Malone

Middle Grade Contemporary

Book Description

On her thirteenth birthday, Summer Haas scratches the lottery ticket her mom tucked into her birthday card and the down-on-their-luck family become instant millionaires. Then the attention gets crazy in their small Illinois town, and the family moves north to ‘disappear’ in the Chicago suburbs. Summer’s new home might as well be on the Moon, it’s so different from where she used to live.

Suddenly, Summer is a candidate for student council, trades her t-shirt and jeans for mall-brand clothes, and throws a party for her entire grade even though she didn’t invite a single guest. Everyone wants Summer to be someone other than herself, including the super-popular Suri who Summer hopes will be her new best friend. There’s Mara who wants Summer to forget about competing with her for third base when softball season comes. And Summer just wants to avoid Dink and Anna even though she has more in common with them than she wants to admit.

But when Mara discovers how Summer’s family made their millions, and threatens to tell the whole school, Summer needs a friend more than ever. Can Summer fit in AND stay true to herself?

3 fleur

MY THOUGHTS:

3 OUT OF 5 FLEURS DE LIS

 

Bingo Summer by Dawn Malone

This was a cute if somewhat formulaic middle grade read. Summer’s life changes instantly when she wins $10 million on a scratch off ticket on her birthday. So much so that her mom packs up Summer and her sister and moves them to the town of Dorrance. Summer has trouble fitting in with the ritzy lifestyle the girls in the town seem to lead, and as a result has trouble making friends. She’s about to learn that having money doesn’t solve all your problems, but can she convince her family of that?

The biggest problem in this book is the one I found so unbelievable. Summer really does not want anyone in her new town to know she won her money on a scratch off. I am not sure why this would be that big of a deal, but maybe it’s because I am an adult. Summer thinks the people of her town knowing she used to be poor would be the peak of embarrassment. Eventually, the truth does come out and Summer learns she was mostly worried for nothing.

While Summer does seem to have problems connecting with the girls in her new school, I don’t think she was trying her best at times either. She’s unnecessarily mean to Dink, and sometimes even when others are trying to strike up a conversation with her, she is standoffish.

At the heart of the book this is a family story, and it was simultaneously cringe inducing and heart warming to see Summer and her mom adapt to life in such a different society. People may laugh at what Summer’s mom is trying to do, but her two daughters are proud of her and that’s really all she needs.

There were a couple of unanswered questions (what was the deal with Frank?), but the story wraps up sweetly and gives you hope that Summer has learned a lot and will be OK wherever life takes her.

View all my reviews

About the Author

Dawn Malone is an author and former newspaper reporter. She has written on a wide range of subjects, from a creole cooking school in New Orleans to award-winning irises in a Wisconsin greenhouse. Writing those articles and working other odd jobs over the years – cake assembly line worker, yogurt seller, substitute teacher ? helps her develop the quirky characters that populate her stories. Her work has appeared in theWisconsin State Journal, the Chicken Soup for the Soul Think Positive for Kids edition, and Highlights for Children. When she’s not writing, Dawn loves hiking when someone else carries her backpack. She lives in central Illinois.

Author Blog  |   Twitter   |  Goodreads  | Pinterest

Purchase

Amazon  |   Barnes & Noble   |   Kobo  |  Book Depository

Get Two Graze Boxes for FREE!

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GIVEAWAY: 4 for Friday Blitz

4-for-Friday-Banner

Welcome to the 4 for Friday Blitz for Crown of Ice by Vicki L. Weavil, Fire in the Woods by Jennifer M. Eaton, Avian by Nicole Conway, and Branded by Abi Ketner and Missy Kalicicki, presented by Month9Books!

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post.

Crown-of-ice-Cover

Thyra Winther’s seventeen, the Snow Queen, and immortal, but if she can’t reassemble a shattered enchanted mirror by her eighteenth birthday she’s doomed to spend eternity as a wraith.

Armed with magic granted by a ruthless wizard, Thyra schemes to survive with her mind and body intact. Unencumbered by kindness, she kidnaps local boy Kai Thorsen, whose mathematical skills rival her own. Two logical minds, Thyra calculates, are better than one. With time rapidly melting away she needs all the help she can steal.

A cruel lie ensnares Kai in her plan, but three missing mirror shards and Kai’s childhood friend, Gerda, present more formidable obstacles. Thyra’s willing to do anything – venture into uncharted lands, outwit sorcerers, or battle enchanted beasts — to reconstruct the mirror, yet her most dangerous adversary lies within her breast. Touched by the warmth of a wolf pup’s devotion and the fire of a young man’s desire, the thawing of Thyra’s frozen heart could be her ultimate undoing.

CROWN OF ICE is a YA Fantasy that reinvents Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Snow Queen” from the perspective of a young woman who discovers that the greatest threat to her survival may be her own humanity.

 

add to goodreads

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Chapter-by-Chapter-header---About-the-Author

Vicki Weavil 11

Vicki Lemp Weavil was raised in a farming community in Virginia, where her life was shaped by a wonderful family, the culture of the Blue Ridge Mountains, and an obsession with reading. Since obtaining her undergraduate degree in Theatre from the University of Virginia, she’s gone on to acquire two masters degrees, living in places as diverse as New York City and rural North Carolina. She’s currently the library director for a performing an visual arts university.  Vicki loves good writing in any genre, and has been known to read seven books in as many days. She enjoys travel, gardening, and the arts. Vicki lives in North Carolina with her husband, son, and some very spoiled cats.

 

Author Links:  Website | Twitter Facebook | Goodreads | Tumbler

Fire-in-the-Woods-Cover

When a plane crashes in the woods near Jess’s home, the boy of her dreams falls out of the sky—literally. But David’s not here to find a girlfriend. He’s from another planet, and if Jess can’t help him get back to his ship, he’ll be stuck on Earth with nothing to look forward to but the pointy end of a dissection scalpel.

But her father runs their house like an army barracks, and with an alien on the loose, Major Dad isn’t too keen on the idea of Jess going anywhere. Ever. So how the heck is she supposed to help the sweetest, strangest, and cutest guy she’s ever met?

Hiding him in her room probably isn’t the best idea. Especially since her Dad is in charge of the squadron searching for David. That doesn’t mean she won’t do it. It just means she can’t get caught.

Helping David get home while protecting her heart—that’s gonna be the hard part. After all, she can’t really fall for a guy who’s not exactly from here.

As they race through the woods with Major Dad and most of the U.S. military one breath behind them, Jess and David grow closer than either of them anticipated. But all is not what it seems. David has a genocide-sized secret, and one betrayal later, they are both in handcuffs as alien warships are positioning themselves around the globe. Time is ticking down to Armageddon, and Jess must think fast if she’s to save the boy she cares about without sacrificing Earth—and everyone on it.

 

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Chapter-by-Chapter-header---About-the-Author

Jennifer M. Eaton

Corporate Team Leader by day, and Ranting Writer by night. Jennifer M. Eaton calls the East Coast of the USA home, where she lives with her husband, three energetic boys, and a pepped up poodle.

Jennifer hosts an informational blog “A Reference of Writing Rants for Writers (or Learn from My Mistakes)” aimed at helping all writers be the best they can be.

Beyond writing and motivating others, she also enjoys teaching her dog to jump through hoops—literally.

Jennifer’s perfect day includes long hikes in the woods, bicycling, swimming, snorkeling, and snuggling up by the fire with a great book; but her greatest joy is using her over-active imagination constructively… creating new worlds for everyone to enjoy.

 

Author Links:  Website  | Twitter Facebook | Goodreads

Avian-Cover

What kind of power is lurking inside him?

After a year of training to become a dragonrider, Jaevid Broadfeather has been sent home to rest during a three-month interlude. But when he returns to find the king drake has chosen Beckah Derrick as his new rider, Jaevid realizes something big is about to happen. Every fiber of his being is pushed to the breaking point as Jaevid battles through his avian year, preparing for the final graduation test of the battle scenario. But there is more standing in his way than a few pushups and fancy sword moves.

Jaevid must face a new fear as he is tormented by a gruesome nightmare of a mysterious gray elf warrior murdering the royal family of Maldobar. It seems obvious to him that this is some kind of message about how the war started long ago—until Felix assures him the king is very much alive. With his strange powers growing stronger by the day, and that violent dream replaying in his mind every night, Jaevid no longer wonders if he will pass his avian year or not . . . he wonders if he will even survive it.

The truth will soon be set loose.

 

 

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Chapter-by-Chapter-header---About-the-Author

NicoleConwayPhoto

Nicole is the author of the children’s fantasy series, THE DRAGONRIDER CHRONICLES, about a young boy’s journey into manhood as he trains to become a dragonrider. She has completed the first two books in the series, and is now working on the third and final book.

Originally from a small town in North Alabama, Nicole moves frequently due to her husband’s career as a pilot for the United States Air Force. She received a B.A. in English with a concentration in Classics from Auburn University, and will soon attend graduate school.

She has previously worked as a freelance and graphic artist for promotional companies, but has now embraced writing as a full-time occupation.

Nicole enjoys hiking, camping, shopping, cooking, and spending time with her family and friends. She also loves watching children’s movies and collecting books. She lives at home with her husband, two cats, and dog.

 

 Author Links:  Website | Twitter | Facebook

Branded-Cover

Fifty years ago The Commander came into power and murdered all who opposed him. In his warped mind, the seven deadly sins were the downfall of society.

To punish the guilty, he created the Hole, a place where sinners are branded according to their sins. Sinners are forced to live a less than human existence in deplorable conditions, under the watchful eye of guards who are ready to kill anyone who steps out of line.

Now, LUST wraps around my neck like thick, blue fingers, threatening to choke the life out of me. I’ve been accused of a crime I didn’t commit, and the Hole is my new home.

Constant darkness.

Brutal and savage violence.

Excruciating pain.

Every day is a fight for survival.

But I won’t let them win. I will not die in the Hole.

I am more than my brand. I’m a fighter. My name is Lexi Hamilton, and this is my story.

 

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Chapter-by-Chapter-header---About-the-Author

 

Abi and Missy met in the summer of 1999 at college orientation and have been best friends ever since. After college, they added jobs, husbands and kids to their lives, but they still found time for their friendship. Instead of hanging out on weekends, they went to dinner once a month and reviewed books. What started out as an enjoyable hobby has now become an incredible adventure.

Author Links:  Website | Twitter | Facebook | Tumbler

Chapter-by-Chapter-header---Giveaway

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INTERVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Wishful Thinking by Elle Jefferson

 Wishful Thinking 

by Elle Jefferson

New Adult Thriller

Book Description

Seventeen year old James Castle Jr. has rugby to deal with the pressures of high school. Fights with his girlfriend, his dad’s constant blame game and graduation anxieties all work out on the field. Every pass, tackle and scrum works out a kink.

That is until rugby gets suspended.

Without rugby as an outlet he has no idea how to deal with stress or the feelings of fear plaguing him since the break-in at home. James walked in on a burglar who knocked him out and left him with a concussion.  Now, James keeps seeing a little girl with pigtails everywhere. Great, he can add delusional to the list of shit he can’t deal with.

What makes the situation weirder, if that’s possible, is this little girl looks a lot like the new girl at his school, Claudia.
He can’t explain the connection he feels to Claudia, it’s not lust or friendship even, but it’s there.
Everything ties to one event; a hit and run accident he was the victim of fourteen years ago. An accident he doesn’t remember. An accident his father never told him about. An accident that wasn’t in fact an accident. It seems someone from his father’s past is hellbent on revenge and this time they plan to make sure James is dead. James will have to remember the past or else be caught in a killer’s crosshairs.

***Parents strongly cautioned due to minor drug use, underage drinking, sex and foul language***

sshinterview

Did you know that my life as a writer started when I was pregnant with my second child? I had just finished my fifth or sixth read through of Harry Potter and was left going “now what?” And thus I started writing. In the beginning I started reading all the books I could find on writing … on editing … on plots … on characters … on grammar. I took classes, mostly online, and then I plunged head-first into the world of writing. It was in the seas of writing while trying to tread water but mostly drowning that I learned of a forum. It was a magical forum where other wannabe writers talked, shared, laughed and mostly gave each other encouragement (I also happened to meet Colleen Hoover there long before Slammed became a NY Times bestseller).

It was through this forum that I met some amazing people and five particular women who became my betas. Later they became my sounding boards and then even later became my everything in the writing world.  So without further ado, here is my post on writing.

 1. What am I currently working on?

As of today I’m working on book three in my vampire series ADIB. It’s the final book and ties up everything and it’s making me a total mess. To say “no pressure” is a lie. There’s so much pressure that yesterday after I took a shower and went to clean my ears I actually saw some of my brain oozing out. Have you ever tickled your brain through your ear with a q-tip? Needless to say I looked like a dog whose owner had found her favorite scratching spot. But on a more serious note I love this series and want the final book to blow the other two out of the water.

 2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?

You got me. I’m still working on figuring out genres. Books never fit neatly into a box, although you’d think they would since they’re rectangular, but whatever. I do know that my books no matter what level i.e YA, NA, or Adult (yes I’m a genre hopper so sue me) always have a hint of the paranormal. I also like my characters to be diverse  which is a trend I’m seeing more and more in books and it makes me happy.  Since I can only be me it’s awesome to read books where the MC is different from me. Either by sex, race, religion or even sexual orientation, I love it!! Diversity in books? One word, WONDERFUL.

  3. Why do I write what I do?

I will say no matter what I write, whether it be paranormal, or sciency (so not a word but should be) there is always a romance. You ask why and I’ll tell you why, because I’m a romantic, because I’m in love with love. Personally, I don’t believe there is nothing more powerful or more beautiful than two people falling in love. Probably makes me terribly sappy but I can’t help it I love love man!! I totally just sounded like an aging hippie.

 4. How does your writing process work?

Okay here’s a visual to end all visuals, picture a monkey. Are you picturing it? Is he skinny? Hairy? Maybe has a bald butt? Okay, now that you have your monkey I want you to imagine said monkey picking up a pile of his poo and flinging it at the wall. Can you see it? Is it making you laugh? Because it’s totally making me laugh. You and your monkey just hanging out flinging poo. HAHAHAHA!!! Well that’s me only instead of poo its words and I fling them and some stick and are actually pretty good, but some? Man some stink.

Keep your eyes out because I have lots more stories brewing in my head. Thanks for reading.
Elle

About the Author

Elle Jefferson lives up in northern Arizona with her two beautiful sons, wonderful husband and her German Shepard Dorrie. When she’s not reading or writing she’s painting or enjoying the great outdoors.
Look for the final installment in the ADIB series in October ’14

Connect with her at
http://ellejefferson.blogspot.com
or www.facebook.com/ElleJeffersonAuthor.com
twitter @oohlalakrysa

Purchase:
sshgiveaway
Blitz-wide giveaway
–A signed paperback of Wishful Thinking
–$10 Amazon GC
–Swag

CLICK HERE TO ENTER!

 

Xpresso Book Tours

REVIEW: Darkness by Elizabeth Arroyo

Darkness

by Elizabeth Arroyo

YA Thriller

Book Description

Seventeen-year-old Carly Lopez suffers from post-traumatic stress, though the “post” part technically doesn’t apply…not when the killer is still out there.

As the only survivor of the killing spree that left four dead girls in its wake, Carly fails to unearth her buried memories of that day and is consumed with guilt. After a year of silence, the killer is back, and Carly will stop at nothing to catch him.

With each new death, Carly’s reality shatters, propelling her deeper into the darkness where the dead haunt her—but where the truth lies. Her only firm grasp of reality is Hunter Jackson, whose mysterious overprotectiveness of Carly forces her to doubt the reason behind her guilt.

But Hunter has a secret.

And when Carly discovers a horrible truth, she questions her involvement in the murders. Was she directly responsible? Did she help the killer? Carly soon learns that finding answers may mean risking more than just her sanity.

pink-fleur-de-lis-md

MY THOUGHTS: 1 OUT OF 5 FLEURS DE LIS

Darkness by Elizabeth Arroyo

I feel like I’m on an unlucky streak with my reading right now, as this was another book that I could not get into and fit into the same mold of throwing too many questions at you and not enough answers.

High schooler Carly is thrown into the middle of a police investigation into a murder. This is because she was the only living victim of the killer they suspect is behind the latest body. This information didn’t come from the book–because the author throws the reader into the middle of things without giving you a clue as to what’s going on–it’s from the synopsis. Carly is understandably still very shaken from her experience, but she’s also determined not to let the killer strike again.

In a not so surprising fashion, here is where hottie new guy Hunter enters..and gasp, he has a secret! At this point I’m so tired of reading this in YA I’m not even going to go into it, but you should know that this type of dude is a huge cliche, but of course he’s sexy so Carly falls for him fast.

I wasn’t interested enough to finish the book and find out Hunter’s secret, or even what happens with the killer. The only cool aspect of the book for me was getting a glimpse into Carly’s psyche, as her imagination runs wild as so many of ours do.

Avoid this one if you hate cliches.

View all my reviews

 

About the Author

Elizabeth spent most of her younger years as an avid reader with a wild imagination which led her to write her first manuscript at the age of fourteen. Her fascination with the paranormal was influenced by the vivid ghost and demon stories her father told her as a child, scaring the crap out of her. It also led her to ask the “what if” question that propelled her down the path of the fantastical.

But, life got in the way. Elizabeth completed a Bachelors degree in Psychology with a minor in Criminal Justice at Northeastern Illinois University and works in the community strengthening families. Her love of stories held, and in 2008 she found herself back into her storytelling roots and began writing again. Since then she’s published a short story in SQ Magazine, countless musings on her blog – Chandara Writes, and completed three manuscripts.

In 2012, Elizabeth signed with Sapphire Star Publishing to release her debut novel, THE SECOND SIGN, a Dark YA Paranormal Romance, slated for an early 2013 release.

Elizabeth resides in Chicago with her family, a household of kids, and the bliss of chaos. The good kind.

You can find more information about Elizabeth at:

Website: http://www.elizabetharroyo.com.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/elizabetharroyo.author

Twitter: https://twitter.com/EArroyo5

GUEST POST & GIVEAWAY: Ellie Jordan: Ghost Trapper by JL Bryan

 

Ellie Jordan: Ghost Trapper

by JL Bryan

Paranormal Urban Fantasy

Book Description

Ellie Jordan’s job is to catch and remove unwanted ghosts. Part detective, part paranormal exterminator, Ellie operates out of Savannah, Georgia, one of the oldest and most haunted cities in North America.

When a family contacts her to deal with a disturbing presence in the old mansion they’ve recently purchased, Ellie first believes it to be a typical, by-the-book specter, a residual haunting by a restless spirit. Instead, she finds herself confronting an evil older and more powerful than she’d ever expected, rooted in the house’s long and sordid history of luxury, sin, and murder. The dangerous entity seems particularly interested in her clients’ ten-year-old daughter.

Soon her own life is in danger, and Ellie must find a way to exorcise the darkness of the house before it can kill her, her clients, or their frightened young child.

sshguest

Tools of the Ghost Trade

by JL Bryan

Are you tired of slogging away at the same old dead-end day job? Do you want a career with flexible hours, iffy benefits, and lots of contact with angry dead spirits? Ghost catching might be the job for you!

At Metaphysical Manufacturing, Ltd., we fully support and encourage your efforts to enter into the dream job that we’ve just now suggested! Part of the reason is that you’ll have to buy lots of products from us in order to be a professional ghost trapper, but we also care about you as a person and stuff.

So what will you need?

Ghost Training: We recommend you order our complete twelve-book, nineteen-video training course, which includes such useful manuals as Boogeyman Basics and How Not to Get Your Soul Ripped From Your Flesh. After filling out our correspondence-course exam and sending us a large check, you’ll get your official ghost-grabber certification!

Ghost Sensors: Several devices can help you determine whether a ghost is in the room with you…maybe even right behind you! The most basic is an electromagnetic frequency (EMF) meter. Ghosts have electromagnetic fields, probably, and these can be detected with modern scientific instruments, maybe. Definitely buy one! We recommend you also pick up our special motion detectors and ghost thermometers—which measure how warm or cold the room is!

Ghost Goggles: Sooner or later, you’ll want to see the ghosts you’re hunting. We recommend sooner! We offer both night vision and thermal imaging goggles to help you find elusive spirits. You can buy one or the other, but it’s best if you buy both!

Ghost Microphone: Use a high-powered, ultra-sensitive microphone (like the ones we sell!) to help you pick up whispers and guttural threats from the Other Side. Spend hours recording, and countless more hours listening and trying to find voices in the static! You’ll never have so much fun again!

Ghost Trap: This is the final “must-have” piece of gear. Your customers will pay you to remove unwanted spirits from their homes, so you’ll want some way to do that. We sell a range of affordable traps, from simple lead-glass jars to phone-booth-sized Faraday cages that create a solid electromagnetic barrier no wicked wraith can escape! We recommend you buy them all.

With these simple purchases, totaling less than eighty thousand dollars, you can become a professional ghost trapper, too! Visit our website to learn (or buy) more!

About the Author

J.L. Bryan studied English literature at the University of Georgia and at Oxford, with a focus on the English Renaissance and the Romantic period. He also studied screenwriting at UCLA. He enjoys remixing elements of paranormal, supernatural, fantasy, horror and science fiction into new kinds of stories. He lives in Atlanta with his wife, his son, and some dogs and cats.

To hear about future books by J.L. Bryan, sign up for his new release newsletter: http://eepurl.com/mizJH

Website: www.jlbryanbooks.com
Twitter: @jlbryanbooks

Purchase:
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One commenter will win an ebook copy of Ellie Jordan: Ghost Trapper! Open Internationally.

 

 

Xpresso Book Tours

SPOTLIGHT & GIVEAWAY: Dia of the Dead by Brit Brinson

 
IFB is hosting the release promo event for the first book in Brit Brinson’s YA Supernatural series. Continue for an excerpt and playlist, and enter the international giveaway.



23117815Release date: September 16th 2014

Publisher: Big Moon Press

Purchase: Amazon



Synopsis via Goodreads:

Protecting Romero High from all things supernaturally spooky as Dia Muerto is a tough gig for sixteen-year-old Dia Summers, but it’s nothing compared to protecting the ones she loves from real, live—well, formerly alive—zombies. Unlike the zombies that shambled around on set, the real deal don’t follow a script. 
 
At the majorly important birthday party of her boss’ daughter, Dia experiences a series of potentially career-ruining social disasters. Before the night is over, she soon discovers that the possible cancellation of her show isn’t her biggest worry. 
 
Armed with what they can find around Bixby Studios, Dia and her friends band together to find out why everyone they know has begun popping up as gray-skinned, black-eyed, limb-nomming zombies. With the ailment spreading, time is running out before Dia is swept up in Hollywood’s latest trend.
 
 


EXCERPT=================

Blaze, the studio’s dealer in residence that everyone knew about except me, turned out to be Blake, the makeup artist. Brendan led the way to his regular hangout. We found him in the alley between buildings Eleven and Twelve taking a drag from a cigarette, his bright blue hair shining in the sunlight. The cigarette dropped from his lip, landing on the ground. He stamped out its glow with the toe of his boot and ran his hands over the thighs of his too tight skinny jeans then through his hair before approaching us.

“What can I do for you?” he asked.

Before anyone could question Blake about Z, Brendan lunged at him, grabbing him by his t-shirt and pushing him against the wall.

“Tell us about the drugs, punk!” Brendan yelled, lifting him a couple inches off the ground.

“Put me down, bro!” Blake shouted.

Brendan let go, and Blake fell to the ground.

“What the hell, dude?” he asked, regaining his footing. “What was that all about?”

 “Sorry, dude. I’m reading for a role as a loose cannon rookie in a cop drama tomorrow so I figured I’d get some practice.”
“Not cool.” Blake adjusted his shirt and frowned. “What do you want?”
 “We’re here to see what you know about these.” I pulled Mason’s baggie out of my satchel.
 “Did you have a bad experience? I have a no refund policy. Your bad high is your problem, not mine.” Blake folded his arms across his chest.
“Bad experience?” I asked.
“I’ve been…uh…handling these for months and haven’t had any problems until recently. People have been calling and saying their friends have been freaking out on them. I’ve told them that’s it’s probably stress—acting is hard—but they believe it’s a bad batch of Z. I’ve been taking this stuff for a while now and I never had any problems. In fact, I took a couple this morning and I’m fin—“ Blake was interrupted by a pretty nasty coughing fit.
The three of us took a step back.
“Dude, are you okay?” Brendan asked from a three-step distance.
“I-I—I’m c-c-cool.” Blake coughed. “I hope I’m not coming down with something.” He cleared his throat.
“Can I see the pills?” he asked.
I handed them over to him from a distance. He inspected the baggie and opened it. He picked out a pill, pinching it between his thumb and index finger for a moment before popping it into his mouth. His Adam’s apple bobbed as he swallowed.
“See. Fine!” His smiled faltered as he grimaced. “Wait.” He hunched forward, holding his stomach and coughed up a torrent of black liquid just like the mess that had come out of Amber.
Blake hit the ground and started to convulse wildly.
A sense of dread washed over me. “Guys, I think we better go.”
“He needs help.” Brendan pointed at Blake’s shaking body.
“Yeah, and someone else can get it for him,” Reagan chimed in.
I nodded in agreement. “I think we’d better head back to Props, make sure Taylor’s okay, wait for help to arrive, and head home.”
I needed to call my mom and ask her to come pick me up. I pulled out my phone, turned it on ready to dial when Reagan interrupted me.
“I need to check on BB. I need to see if she’s all right,” her voice wavered as she started off to find her sister.
“Reagan! Wait!” I called after her. She didn’t stop. I turned to Brendan. “I’m gonna go with her.” I slipped my phone back in my bag.
“I’m gonna go check on the others and see if help has arrived. Maybe they can help him too.” He pointed down at Blake who’d stopped shaking. “Do you think I should try to bring him inside?”
“No. When help comes, just show them where he is.”
My gut told me it would probably be best to leave him there for now.
Brendan nodded and I hurried to catch up with Reagan.
I knew I wasn’t her first choice for company but it seemed like she went out of her way to prove her point. I practically had to run to keep up with her as she led the way to the office building. It stood at the center of the studio, a few stories taller than the other buildings. Its facade was made of reflective glass windows instead of bland beige siding like the rest. I followed her up the pathway leading to the building and through the doors. She breezed right past the receptionist in the lobby and unlike everyone else that entered, she didn’t have to sign in or have an appointment. I sped up and followed her to the elevator. She pressed a button and suddenly we were heading to the building’s top floor.
We stepped out of the elevator at the end of a long hallway I’d never been in before.
“Hurry up,” Reagan called. She was already out of the elevator. “BB should be in there.” She pointed at one of the three doors on the hall.
I hurried to join her.
“BB, where are you, bitch?” Reagan called as she opened the door and stepped inside the darkened room.
No bitches made their whereabouts known.
I hesitated at the entrance, a little afraid to follow Reagan inside. Not only was the room dark, it was quiet. Too quiet. Reagan had disappeared farther into room. Other than the little light that filtered into the room from the hallway, I could barely see past my nose.
“Reagan?” I took another step inside.
She didn’t answer.
I took a few steps back toward the safety of the light.
“Come on, Dia. I know this place is giving you the creeps but you can do this,” I whispered, trying to psych myself up to step into the room again.
“Maybe this will help.” I flipped the switch on the wall, expecting a light to turn on. Nothing happened. I tried again. Still no light.
“Reagan!” I called louder. She still didn’t answer.
Something isn’t right.
I stepped further inside.
A light flickered on in another room spilling into the room I was in. It definitely had BB Bixby flair—tons of purple and white one-of-a-kind furniture and decor plus lots with shiny, sparkly things. Heavy purple drapes covered the windows, blocking sunlight. Looking up, I saw why the light didn’t work. Wires snaked out of a hole in the ceiling and the chandelier they were once connected to was in pieces on the white carpet. Joining the broken light was a knocked over table, a broken vase, and a dozen trampled lilies.
Reagan had to be in the other room. There was nowhere else she could’ve gone. My stomach clenched as I slowly approached the doorway, stopping just outside.
A thud from the other room made me jump.
I took a step and hesitated.
“Come on, you’re Dia Muerto. You can do this,” I muttered.
Fearless Dia Muerto would’ve headed into the next room without a second thought. She lacked the ability to think things through—you know, being a zombie and all. Dia Summers, on the other hand, was well aware of the creepiness in the air, and I wasn’t one for barging into unknown territory without at least some of the facts. I held my breath as I walked toward the doorway and peeked my head inside. Reagan rushed past me, her hand cupped over her mouth, a terrified look in her eyes. She nearly knocked me down as she ran out into the hall.
A low ominous moan came from the room Reagan fled. My stomach dropped to my feet.
I turned on heel and ran from the room as quickly as Reagan did. I didn’t want to know what was responsible for the sound, and I wasn’t going to stick around to find out. Reagan frantically beat on the door at the end of the hall, crying for her dad to open up.
Dread crept over me as I watched Reagan jiggle the doorknob with one hand and pound the door with the other as she screamed for Mr. Bixby. The door didn’t open. Something was wrong. Whatever was in the other room had frightened her to tears. I turned around, ready to run back to the elevator when I saw what had caused Reagan to run.
Her sister, BB Bixby, stood between the elevator and me in a shimmery silver mini dress. She limped toward us, covered in splatters of red, one foot in a strappy silver sandal and the other foot bare. Her hands were tipped in red liquid, one clutching a lock of hair. Red rimmed her mouth like a gruesome lipstick. It streaked across her cheek toward her hairline where a chunk of pink matter settled on a wisp of dark hair while the rest was a wild tangle. Her skin had gone gray and she had the same blue rash as Amber. She cocked her head to the side, setting black eyes on me. She bared black-stained teeth and let out a low growl.
BB didn’t look like any heiress I knew. She didn’t look like an actress either. She looked like a monster. Like something from Dia of the Dead but way more terrifying. I gasped, covering my mouth and took a step back. I knew what I was looking at. The realization made my blood run cold. I’d watched dozens of movies about them as research for my role. It didn’t dawn on me earlier but now, looking at BB, it clicked. The walk. The moans. The stench. The appetite for flesh. Barbara Bush Bixby was a zombie with blood stained hands and a walk that put Dia Muerto’s to shame.
PLAYLIST
=================
The following are songs I listened to while working on Dia of the Dead:
Da Rockwilder by Method Man & Redman (perfect for action scenes)


 


Stole Your Heart by One Direction




Shake Your Rump by the Beastie Boys

Bad Boy by Big Bang




Glad You Came by The Wanted
You Da One by Rihanna


 
 
Brit BrinsonABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brit Brinson was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio. After time away to attend college and graduate school, she returned home. When she’s not writing, she enjoys doing nerdy stuff with her friends. She lives for all things horror, paranormal, and sci-fi.
Dia of the Dead is her first novel.
 
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GIVEAWAY: Secret of the Souls by Terri Rochenski

 

J. Taylor Publishing are giving away FIVE ARCs of Secret of the Souls by Terri Rochenski!

Check it out!

Secret of the Souls

Thrust out of their homes by a human High Priest on a vengeful mission, the Natives of Derlund no longer have a place to call their own. One escaped capture, however, and now she, Hyla, is the only one who can save her people.

For, Hyla, though, saving her nation isn’t her ultimate goal—returning to the Pool of Souls is. Becoming its Guardian and preserving their faith is her heart’s desire. The perils of her current journey, though, could leave her unable to fulfill that dream.

To find her way back to the Pool, Hyla must live among dangerous, powerful humans willing to defend the Natives, and must submit herself—her Talents—to them. While her protection is paramount, plots to end Hyla’s life will push her to her physical and emotional limits.

On the edge of sanity, her courage tested, and convictions nearly broken, Hyla’s final test of loyalty to her faith comes with the death of one she could have loved.

Readers will experience Hyla’s spiritual and self-discovering journey once more, in this latest addition to the Pool of Souls duology.

And J. Taylor Publishing is giving away FIVE ARC copies.

To YOU!

You don’t even have to be a book blogger!

Nope, so long as you are willing to leave an honest review* by October 12th 2014, you are eligible to enter.

Interested?

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You have until midnight of September 21st, 2014 to enter.

*A review should consist of your honest thoughts regarding a book, usually a few paragraphs long and around 150 – 500 (or more, if desired) words in length.

About Terri Rochenski

Terri started writing stories in the 8th grade, when a little gnome whispered in her brain. Gundi’s Great Adventure never hit the best seller list, but it started a long love affair with the fantasy genre.

Today she enjoys an escape to Middle Earth during the rare ‘me’ moments her three young children allow. When not playing toys, picking them back up, or kissing boo-boos, she can be found sprawled on the couch with a book or pencil in hand, and toothpicks propping her eyelids open.

Try vinyl wall art stickers and love the benefits

If you are looking for low cost methods to change your home décor so that it matches your personality, then look no further. With vinyl wall art  you can design to your heart’s content easily, without any trouble. Most of you guys who are unaware of what is vinyl wall art must be thinking that it is similar to putting up wallpaper, right? But you would be mistaken! It is nothing like wallpaper.

Difference between wallpaper and vinyl art decals

Vinyl wall art decals have absolutely no similarity with wallpaper, besides the fact that both of them are stuck to the walls. Vinyl wall decals are not loose sheets like those of wallpaper and they are not so big in size either.

In simple words, these come with self adhesive backsides just like stickers. All you have to do is to take off the back side of the paper which helps to keep the glue intact and place the wall art on the wall. That’s all. Now you see how different it is from ordinary wallpaper. You can choose the various kinds of vinyl wall art and make your house into your home in an uncomplicated and reasonable way.

Steps to applying vinyl wall art

For the people who have never tried vinyl wall art before, why not just try it out once? Vinyl wall stickers can be as easily removed as easily as they are installed. Experiment with it on your home’s walls once, and if it doesn’t work you can get rid of it easily. If you do not try you will never know if the wall decals suit your taste or not. Here are the steps which will help you, the first timers, to put on the wall art stickers in a proper way on your walls without making a mess out of it.

You will get vinyl wall art stickers in form of a roll. All you have to do is unroll the wall art from its’ packaging and give it proper time to straighten itself naturally without putting anything on top of it. When you are ready to apply the decal, simply go to the back side of the sticker where there is a back paper which is there to make sure the glue is kept in its position. Carefully and gently peel the paper off from the back and put the decal on the wall. Even out the glue by rubbing the sticker lightly with your credit card.

Know what you want before you apply!

You must be thinking who will buy wall art which he or she doesn’t like, right? My point is that you can find loads of art stickers which you will like–but think before you purchase and choose carefully as to what will suit your walls and also compliment the other home décor items you have in your place. Just because it is pretty doesn’t always imply that it will look perfect after you put it on your walls. Hence be cautious with you choices.

 

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