Tuesday, May 17, 2016

White Forest revisited

I just heard there's another White Forest Book out there. I read books one and two - Brigitta of the White Forest, and The Ruins of Noe - a while ago, so know Narine of Noe will be a good read. (Click on the names to read my reviews.) Here's some information about it:

Narine of Noe

Narine of Noe (Faerie Tales from the White Forest Book Four)

Narine of Noe should have had her whole life to train to take her father’s place as High Sage. But when a mysterious force falls from the skies, sending the world into elemental chaos and her father into mortal danger, the fate of every living creature lands on her shoulders . . . including that of the Eternal Dragon. Without the Dragon it is impossible to regain the Balance of All Things. An elaborate plan to save the world must be hatched, and Narine is forced to take charge in a world gone mad. Before the White Forest was born, before the Great World Cry, the story that started it all. . .

amazon get it
Praise for Narine of Noe and the White Forest series A charming, magical journey... ~Cassandra Rose Clarke, Author, The Assassin's Curse series

Dinsmore weaves a coming of age story through a world that is both fantastic and believable. ~Rise Reviews

I was hooked before I finished the first chapter . . . I fell in love with Narine and you will, too. ~Brenna D'Amico, actor, Disney’s Descendants

amazonbarnes and noble


Danika Dinsmore is an award-winning author, performance artist, and educator. Over the past 25 years she has developed content for the page, stage, screen, and web. Danika currently works in literary and speculative fiction with an emphasis on juvenile & young adult literature. Author of children’s fantasy adventure series FAERIE TALES FROM THE WHITE FOREST, she often takes her interactive Imaginary Worlds Tour on the road, performing and teaching world-building & creative writing at schools, conferences, and festivals across North America.

FIND OUT MORE: Read an Excerpt below and enjoy a quick introduction to Narine's word!

Don't forget there's a giveaway at the end!

Narine fidgeted onstage, facing the gathered Assembly and guests. Several hundred bodies filled the Great Hall as she and six other Mentee selects stood waiting for their official Keeper assignments. Their Life Tasks.

Sweating under her heavy ceremonial cloak, she reached over her shoulder and scratched at the top of her right wing. When she became High Sage, she decided, she’d get rid of these ridiculous costumes.

She glanced down at Mabbe, the shorter, darker faerie by her side, who swam inside her own thick green carpet of material, her brown and orange wings poking out the back like webbed tree limbs. Mabbe nodded toward the ceiling. Narine looked up at the piercing blue day beyond the crystal dome.

We should be outside, Narine thought into Mabbe’s mind.

This ceremony is so long, Mabbe thought back, we could have flown to the Standing Stones by now.

Narine stifled a laugh. Applause erupted in the room and she composed herself, dutifully clapping along. Mabbe elbowed her.

Narine elbowed Mabbe back. What?

Mabbe nodded toward center stage. They called your name.

Narine whirled to her left to face the line of Sages and Transition Mentors. Sage Shonore of Carraiglenn, the first non-faerie to ever preside over the Transition Ceremony, beckoned her across the stage. Cheeks red with embarrassment, Narine strode up to her, palms pressed together in front of her chest. When she reached Shonore, she opened her hands and held them up, cupped, as if to feel for rain.

“I offer my service,” said Narine, “as a Keeper of Faweh.”

Shonore stepped back, hooves clacking against the wooden floor, and Narine’s father, High Sage Thorze, appeared in her place. He placed his hands together and then offered them up to Narine, his crystal grey-blue eyes shining.

“I offer you Mentorship through our Transition,” his deep voice resonated from within his solid body, “and the Dragon’s Gift when my service is complete.”

Thorze held up his scepter as Shonore stepped forward again. She clapped her front hooves together and beamed down with wide brown eyes.

“Narine of Noe,” she said, “by consensus of the Sages of Noe, and by authority of the Eternal Dragon, you are hereby Transition Matched with Thorze of Noe, High Sage and Keeper of the Elements.”

Narine took her father’s scepter in both hands. They held it together between them, grinning at each other briefly before composing themselves.

“Thorze of Noe,” continued Shonore, “do you accept this Transition Match?”

“Indeed I do,” he boomed. A smattering of laughter danced around the room.

Shonore bowed to Thorze and Narine, her thick mane spilling over her knobby horns. Father and daughter, Sage and Mentee, turned to the audience and approached the front of the stage together, holding the scepter between them. Narine fought with the bottom of her robe, kicking it out with her right foot. She caught sight of her mother’s angular face in the front row. She stopped kicking and lowered her eyes.

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 5/30/16

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.
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Monday, May 16, 2016

Meet the Girl who loved a Vampire

There's a facebook party going on today to celebrate the release of Kaitlyn's Tale by Christine Amsden. Why not join in and find out more about a scarily grown-up paranormal world, just slightly set aside from our own, with stories perfectly designed for all the mothers of Harry Potter fans.


For my reviews of books in the Cassie Scot series (where Kaitlyn is a side-character) please click on the links below:

Cassie Scot paranormal detective
Secrets and Lies
Mind Games
Stolen Dreams

And find Kaitlyn's tale on Barnes and Noble at http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/kaitlins-tale-christine-amsden/1123803275?ean=2940158158919
or on Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01FPQMF5G/

Or to find out more, and read sample chapters, go to http://www.christineamsden.com

Everyone has secrets, and even the walls might not be what they seem in Christine Amsden’s novel, Kaitlyn’s Tale. But some people have bigger secrets than others, and some don’t even know what secrets they hide as the powerful struggle to control the powerless, and those with nothing struggle to find what’s hidden in their souls.

Readers of Christine Amsden’s Cassie Scott series will be pleased to rediscover all the familiar characters, and to find out more about them. Meanwhile new readers will be intrigued with a genuinely different take on vampires, werewolves and magic, a world full of believable adults just slightly outside our experience, a woman struggling to work out who to trust when she won’t even trust herself, and survivors finding hope.

Author Christine Amsden deals with some serious real-world issues, and creates some wonderfully sensual love scenes between great protagonists, while continuing a story of the power-hungry balancing what they can do against what they should or more probably shouldn’t. It’s a haunting tale raising intriguing thought-provoking questions. But it’s also a great adventure, a pleasingly different romance, and a wonderful novel of hope and recovered strength. I didn't want it to end, though it ends beautifully. And I hope the author will write more.

Disclosure: I was given a copy and I offer my honest review. Also, I love the series!

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Heading over the Round Table

Today I get to sneak in on a round table chat with Karin Thomas.

Round Table Chat

Chatting and discovering new things about our favorite authors is an activity we all enjoy. All we need is a cup of coffee, maybe a cappuccino and tune into the Round Table Chat to discover the latest news about an author

says Annamaria, who's providing the table.

Appearing on the Round Table Chat is Karina Thomas, introducing her latest romance One Last Chapter. To indulge in this latest news, grab your favorite drink and join Annamaria Bazzi on the Round Table Chat.

One More Chapter

I'm pouring myself a nice cold coffee, since the weather has warmed up considerably here. Please find your own drink, and enjoy... A Chat with K. S. Thomas

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Do All Roads Lead To Home?

All roads lead to Rome, or so I'm told. But perhaps they lead to different Romes, to imagined destinations where all is revealed. The thought had me wondering if all novels somehow incorporate roads, or paths at least. Though the first one I read last week has a whole long list of very real roads, criss-crossing the States and leading, inevitably, home.

Asphalt Asylum by Steve Theme chronicles a hitchhiking trip from Washington to Florida and back, and is probably memoir rather than novel - which means it really shouldn't be my sort of thing, but I loved it. The author lyrically recreates the scenery for the readers, then invites us into the lives of some fascinating drivers, ranging from generous to scary. It's the kindness of strangers (and sometimes, maybe, their prayers) that protects him, and the loser wins and finds himself. A very cool narrative, best enjoyed with some well-balanced, full-flavored three-star coffee.

Cast A Road Before Me by Brandilyn Collins is more about the trip not taken, as a young woman, orphaned in her teens, plans to take that trip back to her hometown and pick up where her mother left off. Meanwhile the aunt and uncle in the small town that sheltered her have other ideas for her future, as does the young man who works in the same mill as her uncle. But trouble is brewing between management and employees, and 1960s America is evocatively portrayed in this gently Christian romance. Enjoy with some more well-balanced full-flavored three-star coffee.

The Ice Twins by S. K. Tremayne begins with a journey from London to Skye, while its protagonists seek a way "home" after the death of a child. It's a haunting read, sometimes scary, sometimes sad, and always mysterious. The scenery's evocative and the characters are flawed and real, though I wished they'd take better care of their children. Mysterious and dark, this one's best read with some dark five-star coffee.

Then there's Slave Again by Alana Terry, in which various side characters embark on a journey from China to North Korea, while a frightened girl and wounded young woman are sold into slavery as they travel in the opposite direction. The stories are tied together with the involvement of some seriously flawed Christian missionaries, and the author offers a brutally honest look at God's work through flawed characters. It's a long slow story, dark and honest, best enjoyed with another dark five-star coffee.

That first book, Asphalt Asylum, has as its subtitle, the Dark Roads to Light. Perhaps that describes all four of these books. And maybe all roads lead to light, rather than Rome, at least in the sort of books that don't leave readers totally depressed.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Do stories start at the beginning?

Start at the beginning, work through the middle, and finish up at the end - that's the way to do it, isn't it? Whatever "it" may be. But do stories really have to start at the beginning?

I've heard a lot of writing coaches suggest we start with the middle - find out where the story's going then we'll know where it began; but of course, for the reader the story still starts at that newly and beautifully rediscovered beginning.

There are others who insist the published tale should start in the middle of the action, revealing the past when things calm down, then heading for the future - got to grab those readers, right from the start you see.

Then there are books that start at the end, or nearly the end, jumping to "six months earlier" or three hours or three days. TV shows do it to. They drive my sons crazy.

And then there are series, beautifully developed, convincing and cool. The reader loves the characters or the world, and just wants a little more. Then the author offers a beginning before volume one, and volume zero arrives. I wonder if maybe these work the best, when the beginning is so well worked out, the author knows it all. It's built into all the characters; it's solid and true; but its mystery's waiting, not weighing the story down. When it's finally told, it's complete in new stories of its own, instead of just background to be rushed through before the tale begins.

Field of Graves by J. T. Ellison comes before the rest of her Taylor Jackson series (which I've not read). I'm told it reveals how certain main characters met. For me, a new reader, it reveals a fascinating protagonist, flawed but strong, with her own dark mysteries weighing her down. I can almost imagine a volume minus one someday. But in the meantime, I'll brew some dark five-star coffee and look for volume one.

Seeds of Foreverland by Tony Bertauski introduces the character who creates the mysterious Foreverland of his beloved trilogy. I really love the Foreverland novels, so I was delighted to find a copy of this. It's somewhat darker though - kind of Stephen King-ish in its depiction of the misfit son of possibly mad scientists. You'll need some more dark five-star coffee while you read, and don't let the flies land in your mug.

Halfskin (the vignettes) by Tony Bertauski, offers a set of vignettes creating a history, or pre-history, of the world of Clay. The stories fit together beautifully, with a gradual escalation of fears and ideas in a thoroughly believable, slightly-alternate reality. Here it was bio-chips rather than silicone chips that changed the world, and the social, scientific and even political changes brought about are fascinating. Enjoy with some richly elegant complex four-star coffee.

Another introductory novella by Tony Bertauski is Drayton, introducing a not-quite vampire, not-quite-angel of death character with a wealth of history and mystery untold. It's cool, dark, and told with unflinching language. Brew some more dark five-star coffee and enjoy.

Oliver and Jumpy 34-36 by Werner Stejskal, twelfth in a series of childrens picture books, includes the story of where Oliver got his hat, so I guess that's a prequel too. Meanwhile there's Oliver and Jumpy, 40-42, by Werner Stejskal, which includes elephants, spiders and Halloween scares. The series keeps growing.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Have you looked? Have you seen?


Today I'm delighted to be part of the Southern Haunts 3 virtual book tour. If you haven't read books one and two, they're highly recommended - great collections of great scary (and southern) tales. (Click on the links for my reviews.) But here on my blog today, I have author Melissa Robinson telling where she found the...

Inspiration for Docta Bones
Melissa Robinson

            Inspiration for “Docta Bones” hit, as you can imagine, on a cold winter day. Sitting in front of the Mississippi River,  I was discussing local legends with my fellow author, Alexander S. Brown. Out of all the legends we had talked about, this one stuck in my mind. The depravity of a man sacrificing his own daughter in a dark ritual held a certain allure for me. I typically write about monsters, but the chance to write about a real life human monster was one I could not pass up. Listening to Mr. Brown explain the legend made the wheels in my head start to turn.
            I could almost envision the entire scenario. I saw him in his home, and I saw the girl that met her tragic end at the hands of her father. A friend volunteered to take me to the spot where he'd actually lived. Excitement took hold of me then. I had to know more about this man, this monster. Although the house had long been demolished, the air around the property is still heavy. I absorbed the feeling, and breathed in what I could only imagine was both of them reaching across the decades and the barrier between life and death to tell me the story.
            I focused in on the tree in what would've been the backyard. The tree was one of the focal points of the story in my mind. No other words exist beyond it felt important to the story. I've always been a fan of studying history. I was now being given a chance to put my own spin on a historical figure of Vicksburg, MS. I left the site, went home, and immediately began typing the story. However, I couldn't get the “flow” right. It was suggested to me to try typing the entire thing in the dialect of the main character. Once I began that, the story poured out of me.
            I wrote like a woman possessed. It was almost as if the story had me in its grip and would not release me until it was told in its entirety. Hour after hour I'd spend staring at my screen. Finally, the story was complete. Years working in law enforcement have taught me that a human being is capable of being every bit as vicious and cruel as any mythical monster that visits us in our nightmares. Perhaps, in writing “Docta Bones”, I simply pulled back the curtain a little to let everyone see the darkness in people. Most people would like to pretend that we are civilized and things like this just don't happen, but they do.  This story is a way to open eyes to the horrors that are out there every day.

            It was with that in mind that I did not shy away from the violence. Before undertaking this project, I'd said multiple times I would not write about violence against a child. The more I thought about it, I decided to do this project because the victim was a child. I wanted to make it gut-wrenching and horrible for the reader. I wanted people to be saddened and sickened by something like this happening to a child. I wanted that so that people could take a look around and truly see the world we live in. 

Thank you Melissa, and what a cool, scary introduction to your writing. Sometimes we really do need to look around and see what's wrong with the world. And sometimes, as you say, it's fiction's clever disguise that takes us out of our comfort zone enough to make us look.

Thank you so much for visiting my blog.

Southern Haunts Three - Magick Beneath the Moonlight Virtual Tour

About the Editors:

AlexanderSBrownAlexander S. Brown: Alexander S. Brown is a Mississippi author who was published in 2008 with his first book Traumatized. Reviews for this short story collection were so favorable that it has been released as a special edition by Pro Se Press. Brown is currently one of the co-editors/coordinators with the Southern Haunts Anthologies published by Seventh Star Press. His horror novel Syrenthia Falls is represented by Dark Oak Press.

He is also the author of multiple young adult steampunk stories found in the Dreams of Steam Anthologies, Capes and Clockwork Anthologies, and the anthology Clockwork Spells and Magical Bells. His more extreme works can be found in the anthologies Luna’s Children published by Dark Oak Press and State of Horror: Louisiana Vol 1 published by Charon Coin Press.
Visit Smashwords.com, Amazon.com, and Barnesandnoble.com to download his monthly short stories known as Single Shots. These are represented by Pro Se Press and they are known as stories that will be featured in the upcoming book The Night the Jack O’Lantern Went Out.

LouiseMyersLouise Myers: Louise Myers was born in New Orleans and during her teenage years was uprooted from everything she knew and was replanted in Mississippi. Though the transition was difficult, she is very glad to have the opportunity to have both worlds under her belt. She says this because she knows from living in both places, they are both a world all to their own. She is the wife of a wonderful husband and mother of three beautiful children, as well as the proud parent of a spoiled mutt.

She was assistant editor of Southern Haunts: Spirits That Walk Among Us, co-editor of Southern Haunts 2: Devils in the Darkness, and co-editor of Southern Haunts 3: Magick Beneath the Moonlight.
She is a beta reader, book doctor, editor, and author. Though this is her second story in print, she has been weaving tales for many years for pleasure. She has many thoughts on several topics she’d like to write, mostly surrounding ghost stories.

About the book

Southern Haunts 3: Magick Beneath the Moonlight: Deep within the South, read about the magickal folk who haunt the woods, the cemeteries, and the cities. Within this grim anthology, eighteen authors will spellbind you with tales of hoodoo, voodoo, and witchcraft.

From this cauldron mix, readers will explore the many dangers lurking upon the Natchez Trace and in the Mississippi Delta. They will encounter a bewitched doll named Robert from the Florida Keys, and a cursed trunk that is better left closed. In the backstreets of New Orleans, they will become acquainted with scorned persons who will stop at nothing to exact their revenge.

These hair raising tales and more await you in Southern Haunts 3: Magick Beneath the Moonlight. Read if you dare.

 Amazon Links Kindle Version
Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/southern-haunts-alexander-s-brown/1122860995?ean=2940150901841

Alexander S. Brown
Angela Lucius
David Blalock
C G Bush
Della West
Diane Ward
Elizabeth Allen
Greg McWhorter
John Hesselberg
Jonnie Sorrow
Kalila Smith
Linda DeLeon
Louise Myers
Melissa Robinson
Melodie Romeo
J L Mulvihill
Robert McGough
Tom Lucas

Southern Haunts: Magick Beneath the Moonlight is the third title in the Southern Haunts Anthology Collection. Look out for...

About the Tour

Tour Schedule and Activities
5/2/2016 Book in the Bag Review
5/3/2016 SwillBlog Review
5/3/2016 Beauty in Ruins Guest Post
5/4/2016 Connie P Guest Post
5/5/2016 Jorie Loves A Story Review
5/6/2016 Sheila's Guests and Reviews Guest Post
5/6/2016 L. Andrew Cooper's Horrific Scribblings Review
5/7/2016 Sapphyria's Book Reviews Top Ten’s List
5/8/2016 Come Selahway With Me Interview
5/8/2016 Deal Sharing Aunt Interview

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

What stories creep into your mind?


Georgia L. Jones' Remnants of Life Series Virtual Tour!

Today I'm delighted to welcome Georgia L. Jones to my blog. She's the author of the intriguing Remnants of Life series, and she's touring the internet with books one and two, Legends of Darkness, and Witches. Pull up a chair, fill your mug with rich dark coffee, and then read what she has to say about how this series "began to creep into [her] mind."

Over to you Georgia, and welcome to my blog:

I’m currently working on the final book in the trilogy of Remnants of Life as well as several other projects.  The first book in the series, Legends of Darkness, launched on March 17, 2012; the second, Witches, launched on December 1, 2012. 

Legends of Darkness began to creep into my mind about a year before I put any of it on paper.  I have always been an avid reader.  I love Greek Mythology and anything fantasy like.  Of course, I’m also a believer that all fiction is a type of fantasy, but that’s for another blog. Anyway, I had this idea where many different concepts could collide, to create something new.  I started thinking about all the characteristics of different creatures and began to piece some of them together to create the characters.  I also wanted to incorporate some realistic boundaries…hence was created, Legend of Darkness.

I began with the Warriors.  They are the heroes of the whole story.  They are kind of like archangels who try really hard to be good, but occasionally can’t resist the urge to eat a human or two.  They keep many of their human attributes and all of their human memories.  They are also given different special gifts to help them with their particular fate.  These Warriors are bound by a few rules that are set by their God, Nuem.  These are few and they are allowed all the wealth and material things that they want in the human realm.  They were made to be draw to destroying evil.  They can smell it and it makes them morph into the Warriors that lay inside them.  They actually go through a physical change when this happens.  They get claws and fangs, but a little differently than the traditional vampire would.  The reason they are attracted to humans is because they are evil.  Some are more evil than others, but when the ones who are really evil cross paths with the Warriors, they soon meet their demise.

In the story you learn about this whole new world that is revolving inside our own human reality, as well as a couple of other worlds that revolve outside of ours, like Vicus and Atheria.  It is not that it is really hidden from humans, but more that it is ignored by humans.  There are always demons trying to dominate the humans and the Warriors, which are the vampire like creatures.  They are tasked with keeping them at bay.

The whole series revolves around the Warriors and the different attempts that the demons make to take over the world and dominate the humans.  Legends is from the perspective of Samoda, a Warrior in the Army of Nuem.  The second book, Witches, is from the perspective of a seemingly human twin, Kali.  In the second book I delve a little deeper into world building as I begin to really breathe life into Vicus, a baron hell, and Atheria, a lush heaven of sorts.  I have had a lot of fun with the world building aspect and the creatures that inhabit them. 

My main motive for writing the first book, and the series as it has evolved, was to write something unique.  I wanted to catch lightning in a bottle, so to speak.  I believe that the concept is fresh and new.  It incorporates the age old saga involving, greed, love, betrayal, and vengeance.  

If you would like to learn more about my writing here are the links:

About the Author

GeorgiaJonesMeet the author: Georgia L. Jones was born in Columbia, Missouri on September 21st, 1968. In 1992 she settled in the beautiful Ozarks town of Lebanon, Missouri, where she has lived since.

At a young age Georgia learned the value of getting lost in a good book. She has always enjoyed reading and letting her imagination run wild. In her early teenage years she began to put her own stories down on paper as she plunked out the words

Over the years Georgia has harbored the dream of being a published author and written many short stories. On January 10, 2010 she embarked on the dream as she began to bring the characters from her first novel, “Legends of Darkness”, to life. Upon completion in June 2010 she realized that it was not a single book but a series and created the concept of the series “Remnants of Life”.

On September 5, 2010 the “Remnants of Life” series was contracted through a small press publishing house out of Louisville, KY., and so her career began. Through that press, Blackwyrm Publishing, Georgia L. Jones published the first two books in the series, Legends of Darkness and Witches, took part in several anthology works both as an author and editor, and created a new character to add to her own multi-faceted personality, Smarty Mic Smartypants who endeavors into the more cynical and snarky side of life. In September of 2015 she became part of the Seventh Star Press Family which is based out of Lexington, KY. The second edition of the first two books in the “Remnants of Life” series as well as the third book in the series are currently contracted through them.

When her muse isn’t dragging her to lands unknown, you will find her hanging out with her family and friends in the Novalunium Paranormal Mansion, the 1840 farmhouse that she calls home as well as home base for the small Paranormal Research Group that her and a couple of friends have founded. -

Author Links: Website: http://www.wordsmithgljones.com/

About the books:

LegendsofDarknessRead Legends of Darkness: 

Dangerous Saviors...what would you do if your life rested in the hands of something that really wanted to EAT YOU...

Come journey through the realms of the next world where everything you know about Good and Evil are put to the test.

Samantha Garrett lives and dies a good life in the human world. She awakens a new creature, Samoda, a vampire-like warrior in the army of Nuem. She is forced to realize that she has become a part of a world that humans believe to be only “Legends of Darkness”. Samoda finds her new life is entwined with the age old story of Greed, Love, Betrayal, and Vengeance.

Join our Heroine as she battle’s not just for her own existence, but for entire human race’s future.

Amazon Link for Legends of Darkness
Kindle Version http://www.amazon.com/Legends-Darkness-Remnants-Life-Book-ebook/dp/B01DVM6ACU
Barnes and Noble Link for Legends of Darkness http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/legends-of-darkness-georgia-l-jones/1107823255?ean=2940158031977

WitchesCoverThen read Witches: The second book in the Remnants of Life Series follows the story of the Warriors in their age old battle against evil that constantly fights to take over the human world.

In “Witches” meet Kali and Seline, a set of seemingly human twins who discover their heritage, which is rich in the blood of the Strega. Learn about the Strega and the role they have played throughout history. Follow our hero’s through Southwest Missouri and beyond as they pursue the demons and unravel the puzzle that has Kali and Seline right in the middle of it.

Amazon Link for Witches
Kindle Version
Barnes and Noble Link for Witches

About the Tour
Tour Schedule and Activities

5/2/2016 SwillBlog Review
5/3/2016 Cover2Cover Interview
5/4/2016 The Word Nerds Guest Post
5/4/2016 Sheila's Guests and Reviews Guest Post
5/4/2016 Shells Interviews Guest Post
5/7/2016 Novel-ties Top Ten List
5/7/2016 Deal Sharing Aunt Interview
5/8/2016 Scarlet Letters from the Literary Underworld Guest Post

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Are there shadows over Somerset?


Bob Freeman's Cairnwood Manor Series Virtual Tour

Today I'm delighted to welcome author Bob Freeman to my blog to answer just a few questions about his Cairnwood Manor Series of books. I really enjoyed the first book, Shadows over Somerset (click to read my review), so I'm delighted to find there's another, and even more delighted to get to ask the author some questions. So, find yourself a good strong cup of coffee, sit down and enjoy.

Hi Bob, and welcome to my blog. Since I grew up in Britain and enjoyed many vacations in Scotland, I have to ask you, Indiana and Scotland? What do they have in common?

Well, for starters, both are near and dear to my heart. I am a Hoosier, born and bred, but I've felt a kinship to Scotland since I was a child. Strike out away from urban centers, into the rural countryside of both, and I believe you'll find Scots and Hoosiers kindred spirits, hardworking, salt of the earth folk who are connected to the land beneath their feet.

That sounds plausible, certainly. But then there's Somerset too, which means a particular part of England to me, so where does that fit in? What does Somerset mean to you, and how did you choose it for the name of your town?

Somerset was, in fact, chosen for me. Somerset, Indiana is quite a real place, about a 20 minute drive from my front door. Originally nestled along the Mississinewa River, in the heart of land sacred to the Miami, Somerset was relocated in the 1960s when the Mississinewa Dam was built. The forest and riverway of old Mississinewa, from 5 Mile Bridge to Seven Pillars, was my childhood playground and I love it as much as anything found on this earth.

Ooh, you have some great names there, besides Somerset. And, thinking of names, how do you choose the names of your characters?

Names are always tricky business, no? With the Cairnwood Saga it was a simple matter of what felt right. There were few changes from the first draft. Basically I just went with what felt natural, but I always looked up a name's meaning, just to make sure the stars were aligned.

Names are important and I don't think most parents put enough thought into it. You've got to roll that name around on your tongue and remember that a name has real weight and means something.

How true. And in my family, having rolled them around on the tongue you have to make tables and charts and compare each pair of names, one against the other, and ... Anyway, you describe yourself as a student of mythology, folklore, magic and religion, as well as of names. How important do you think these are in fiction in general, and in your own fiction?

Myth and myth building is such an integral part of the human condition, it is the cornerstone of our evolution as a species, more important than facts and figures, because it shapes our thoughts and is fueled by our hopes and dreams, our fears and nightmares.
The best fiction writers I think embrace that, they tap into that collective unconsciousness that we're all wired into. Storytelling is the purest form of magic and writers are magicians casting a spell on their readers, taking them to worlds of pure imagination, and the best of these worlds feel all too real no matter the fantastical trappings you find there.

For myself, I love to fall under and to cast those spells. I've read that the Cairnwood Manor novels might be called gothic horror? Is that right? 

I'd like to think so. Certainly Shadows Over Somerset is. Keepers of the Dead strays into a more action/adventure/pulp flavor, but there are elements of the Gothic that remain in play.

What defines the genre?

Gothic horror, to me, is a mystery tinged with elements of supernatural horror set against the dark and macabre background of ancient ruins and haunted estates.

It's a genre I feel quite at home in. I read a lot of gothic romances as a child and was quite fond of Dark Shadows, sort of the quintessential gothic of my generation, I suppose.

Ah, I missed out on Dark Shadows, though I did used to buy the books from Woolworths and read them under the bedcovers. One final question though, are there more of your Cairnwood Manor books to come?

At least one more, to be sure, in 2017, I surmise. I've two more books to see print first before we can adequately see a conclusion to the tale begun at Cairnwood Manor.

Thank you Bob. I've really enjoyed chatting with you.


BobFreemanKeepersoftheDeadAuthorPhotoBob Freeman is an author, artist, and respected lecturer on the occult and paranormal phenomena. A lifelong student of mythology, folklore, magick, and religion, Mr. Freeman makes his home in rural Indiana with his wife Kim and son Connor.

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"Foolish pup," MacGregor chided the werewolf, "you don't get it. Laddie, if water were evil I'd be but a drop. What lurks below is an ocean."

From the haunted halls of Cairnwood Manor to the bowels of Rosslyn Chapel, Bob Freeman hurls you into the very heart of the eternal conflict between the forces of darkness and the forces of light.

It's fang versus claw, spell versus steel, and love versus death in an epic battle of blood and thunder.

When a sinister cabal converges to unleash the ultimate evil against an unsuspecting world, only the combined strength of the Wolves of Cairnwood Manor and the Circle of Nine Skulls offers up a glimmer of hope as werewolves, vampires, witches, immortal warriors, and an army of the undead collide in a battle of epic bloodshed.

Amazon Links for Keepers of the Dead
Kindle Version
Barnes and Noble Link for Legends of Darkness

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Monday, May 2, 2016

Paranormal never looked so good

Have you read any of the Cassie Scot series? Christine Amsden has created a nicely different world of magic, just parallel to our own, where magic users hide their skills, but make great politicians and thieves, and where vampires and werewolves aren't quite what we've been let to believe. Enter Kaitlyn... and thank you Christine for letting me be part of your cover reveal!

Kaitlin Mayer is on the run from the father of her baby – a vampire who wants her to join him in deadly eternity. Terrified for her young son, she seeks sanctuary with the Hunters Guild. Yet they have their own plans for her son, and her hopes of safety are soon shattered.

When she runs into Matthew Blair, an old nemesis with an agenda of his own, she dares to hope for a new escape. But Matthew is a telepath, and Kaitlin's past is full of dark secrets she never intended to reveal.

This novel is a Companion to the Cassie Scot Series, a cool standalone tale, and a great introduction to Cassie's world. But how will Kaitlyn fit in?

Buy Links  · Coming Soon

Ebook Release:  May 16, 2016
Print Release: July 15, 2016
Audiobook Release: TBA

The Cassie Scot Series

Cassie Scot: ParaNormal Detective (Cassie Scot #1)
Secrets and Lies (Cassie Scot #2)
Mind Games (Cassie Scot #3)
Stolen Dreams (Cassie Scot #4)
Madison's Song (a Cassie Scot Companion)

About the Author

Christine Amsden has been writing fantasy and science fiction for as long as she can remember. She loves to write and it is her dream that others will be inspired by this love and by her stories. Speculative fiction is fun, magical, and imaginative but great speculative fiction is about real people defining themselves through extraordinary situations. Christine writes primarily about people and relationships, and it is in this way that she strives to make science fiction and fantasy meaningful for everyone.
At the age of 16, Christine was diagnosed with Stargardt’s Disease, which scars the retina and causes a loss of central vision. She is now legally blind, but has not let this slow her down or get in the way of her dreams.
Christine currently lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, Austin, who has been her biggest fan and the key to her success. In addition to being a writer, she's a freelance editor, mom, and foster mom.

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