Tag Archives: new release

Get Cozy with DEAD MEN DON’T TALK

Well, how remiss of me. I released a new novel and didn’t tell you!

My cozy style mystery is now available on Amazon. It offers a little humor, a bit of romantic banter, some misguided sleuthing, a possible ghostly encounter and of course, the dangerous element. Take all that, combine it with a cast of quirky characters and you have the first Daisy Red-Tail Novel – DEAD MEN DON’T TALK.

DEAD MEN DON’T TALK

A Daisy Red-Tail Novel

DEB SANDERS

Words: 65,000

AMAZON

COMING FALL, 2015: Book 2, DEAD MEN CAN’T DANCE

Book Description:DeadMenFinal

A cozy style mystery with a lot of charm.

When  feisty Southern Belle and caterer, Daisy O’Connor is drawn into the search for a missing person on a Native American reservation, she realizes it will take more than Sweet Tea to make the locals talk.

Daisy swore she’d never return to Piney Creek Indian Reservation after her step-father tried to kill her, and she kept that vow for fifteen years – until her adopted Lakota grandfather summoned her to find his missing grandson. Upon arrival, Daisy uses her Southern charm to dig for information, and finds it works exceedingly well on everyone . . . except John Greyhawk, Deputy Chief of Tribal Police.

Greyhawk proves a thorn in her side as Daisy attempts to unravel the mystery behind Eddie Black Crow’s disappearance, A few “white lies” and a slice of Chocolate Cola Cake later, she determines the big brute’s heart is as cold as a frog’s behind . . . and just as unpleasant. Things turn dark when her investigation uncovers a more sinister situation, one that might send her home – in a body bag.

Added Bonus!!!
Recipe for Daisy’s Chocolate Cola Cake

Excerpt:

She stared up at the swath of twinkling lights and sighed. Atlanta’s artificial glow obliterated any chance for star gazing, making her forget how big the night sky could look.

Harry sat up, staring into the darkness. A low growl rose from his throat.

Daisy remained motionless though every muscle in her body tensed. Someone or something was out there. A form moved near the road but it was hard to see what it was in the dark. “Hello? Who’s out there?” She’d never been one to back down from a confrontation and tonight was no exception. The sound of crunching gravel alerted her to the stranger’s approach. Harry growled again, this time louder.

“Daisy Red-Tail.”

She squinted, peering into the shadows. “Yes?”

Wes Spotted Pony stepped into the dim light emanating from the window. “You used to live here. On the rez.”

She remained seated as her pulse quickened with a warning. “I did – a long time ago.”

He stepped closer. Daisy tightened her hold on Harry’s neck to keep the dog from lunging. “Where’s your car?”

“I had a flat. It’s been towed to town.”

“Too bad. You gotta be careful on the rez. It can be dangerous for a white eyes.”

“Yeah, I know. What do you want, Wes?”

His eyes flickered, a sign he didn’t expect her to know his name. “Just checking on you. Making sure you’re safe.” He snickered.

“I’m fine. Now run along home. I hear your momma callin’.”

“I like the way you talk. We don’t get a lot accents like yours around here.”

Daisy stood up. “Go home, Wes. There’s no reason for you to come any closer.”

He took another step. “Hey, baby . . . you might like being close to me. I’m a real pleaser.”

As he crossed the remaining distance between them, Harry broke free of her grasp, planting himself between her and the young Native. The distraction gave Daisy enough time to pull Grandfather’s snub nosed .38 from her purse. She aimed it at the boy’s chest. “Honey, you don’t want to mess with Southern women. We’ll rip your heart out and bake it up in a pie quicker than you can whistle Dixie.”

He stiffened as though she had struck him. “You . . . you won’t shoot me. You probably don’t even know how to fire that thing.”

She pointed the barrel upwards, fired two shots and aimed it at his forehead before he could move. “Sugah, the next round is gonna light up your head like the Fourth of July unless you start walking away right now.”

His hands flew up as he scurried backward in a panic. “Okay, okay. I didn’t mean nothin’.”

Within seconds, the night engulfed his figure but a menacing threat floated through the air. “You’re gonna be sorry about this. Mark my word.”

After a few minutes, Daisy returned to the step. She slid the gun into her purse, surprised to find her hand shaking. Harry sat beside her like a bodyguard, staring into the shadows.

“I think we just made an enemy. It might not be safe for you to sleep outside tonight.”

Amber eyes studied her with a keen sense of understanding. He lay down next to Daisy, resting his head on her knee as she wrapped her arm around his neck.

“Thanks for having my back, Harry. You’re the only male I trust.”

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The Debt Collector – Cyberpunk Fantasy

Season Two of the highly acclaimed series by

Susan Kaye QuinnThe Debt Collector Season 2 Blitz Banner 851 x 315

Debt Collector

Season Two

Episodes 10-18

Susan Kaye Quinn

Genre: Urban Fantasy with a Cyberpunk Twist

Date of Publication:

Dec 15, 2014

ASIN: B00OF18W50

Number of pages: 500

Word Count: 125,000

Cover Artist: Steven Novak

debtcollectorcoverBook Description:

What’s your life worth on the open market?

In this gritty urban fantasy, debt collectors take your life energy and give it to someone more “worthy”… all while paying the price with black marks on their souls.

Wraith is a shadow in the night, haunting the bedrooms of the rich “high potentials” who have stolen life energy from the desperate and dying. The justice and the sweet mercy hit that follow keep her from falling into her own personal abyss.

Her secret nighttime work also keeps her on level for her real mission: carrying on her father’s legacy of attempting to bring an end to debt collection as a whole. But when a mysterious debt collector interrupts her in the act and discovers her secret, everything Wraith loves may be destroyed by the one thing she can never fix– the original sin of being a debt collector herself.

Available at Amazon

Contains mature content and themes.

Book Trailer: http://youtu.be/0-ngIMiEF1M

“Wraith is amazing and just as compelling as Lirium–once again I’m hooked!!”

“I loved being back in this world! Wraith has captivated me.”

OPTIONED FOR VIRTUAL REALITY  BY IMMERSIVE ENTERTAINMENT

2014 Semi-Finalist in Science Fiction in the Kindle Book Awards

The nine episodes of Season Two of the Debt Collector serial are collectively 125k words or about 500 pages.

It is recommended that you start with the first season, but each season is a complete story for that debt collector and can serve as an entry point to the series.

There are five planned seasons in the Debt Collector series, the first four each from the perspective of a different debt collector with the fifth season bringing all four together.

READING ORDER

Season One – Lirium – COMPLETE

Episodes 1-9: Delirium, Agony, Ecstasy, Broken, Driven, Fallen, Promise, Ruthless, Passiondebt collector season two picture teaser 1

Season Two – Wraith

10 – Wraith (10.20)

11 – Specter  (10.27)

12 – Menace (11.3)

13 – Temptation (11.10)

14- Shattered (11.17)debt collector season two picture teaser 2

15 – Penance (11.24)

16 – Judgment (12.1)

17- Corruption (12.8)

18- Atonement (12.15)

BOX SET (Vol 10-18) – (12.15)

Excerpt:debt collector season two picture teaser 4

My new collection suit weighs less than a shadow on my skin, and my soft-soled boots don’t even whisper as I creep across the thick, yielding carpet of my target’s apartment. With the best bullet-resistant synthetics money can buy, the black curve-hugging suit makes me look more like female-special-forces than someone’s hot date for the night. It raised the bellman’s eyebrows, but an untraceable debit card got me waved through the lobby, no problem. Money buys a lot of things. Access to one of the highest-security luxury buildings in LA. A ninety-fifth-floor apartment high above the smog-soaked city, complete with all the clean air you can breathe. And the no-doubt illegal collection of ivory-handled daggers I passed on the way in. It’s too bad for data-mining mogul Adrien Odel that money cadebt collector season two picture teaser 3n’t buy your way out of a blackened soul.

I know.

I’ve tried.

And tonight I’ve come to collect a debt he doesn’t even think he owes.

Outside the floor-to-ceiling windows of Odel’s apartment, the city is lit up with a nighttime electric haze, the kind that makes it look seedy even in the high-rent district. It’s the perfect backdrop for a collection, and my suit is a black silhouette against it, a hole of death punched in the city’s twinkling lights. The high-tech fabric clings to me like the original sin I can never expiate, the one every debt collector is born with: the ability to deliver death with the slightest touch. We traffic in it, surround ourselves with it, and can never escape it.

Not that I haven’t tried that, too.

But even a short three-week dry spell away from collecting has me needy as all hell. The craving for a life energy hit claws at my back, and every step across the carpet amps up the desire. Even the possibility of Odel pulling a gun and shooting me dead hypes the thrill a little. My palm aches in anticipation—for the justice and the high that comes with it—but I take it slow, watching the placement of my feet and checking the windows. Along one edge, next to a mile-wide screen and some pretentious artwork, there’s a control panel. Only the rich want windows that open in the city, but it’s a bonus for me, especially given the windows face the broad expanse of the skyline and not the high-rise next door.

As I check out the control panel, the high-rise becomes a peep show. A woman’s naked body is pressed against the glass, exposed to the city’s onlookers as a man clutches her bare skin and makes love to her. I’m transfixed by the way they move, skin against skin, without care for the contact or the watchers. In a moment, they’re gone. Maybe reason broke through the passion. Maybe the glass was cold, in spite of the perpetual heat of LA.

Regardless, the image holds me hostage.

Having a lover isn’t something that’s part of my future. Or my present, for that matter. But that doesn’t stop the base need from surging up, usually at the least convenient of times. Then a different image—a cold, pale specter from my past—crawls out of the dark corners of my mind and reminds me I’m not the kind of woman who gets to have a normal life. I’m the kind who takes life and then gives it away. And the ecstasy of that is the closest I’ll ever get to the normal kind again—so it had better be good enough.

I couldn’t stomach even that pleasure for a while, not after what the debt collectors did to my father. I managed a whole three weeks without a single collection. But in the end, it’s the only thing that keeps me stable. And I’ve had a severe lack of stable ever since my father’s death nearly tore down the teetering scaffold of lies that comprises my life. That’s when the abyss reared up and stared me full in the face. Will-power alone wasn’t enough to stop it—the darkness just opened its maw and threatened to swallow me whole. At least that would have put an end the torment… but I couldn’t let the sin of who I am destroy everything my father had worked for. That we had both worked for. So here I am, dressed like a phantom, stalking the rich to give to the poor. With a tremor in my hands that’s more than a little unsettling. For better and worse, it’s the one thing that keeps me out of that dark place and gives me hope that one day I might redeem everything I am and everything I’ve done.

quinnAbout the Author:

Susan Kaye Quinn is the author of the bestselling Mindjack Trilogy and the Debt Collector serial, as well as other speculative fiction novels and short stories. Her work has appeared in the Synchronic anthology and has been optioned for Virtual Reality by Immersive Entertainment. Her business card says “Author and Rocket Scientist” but she mostly sits around in her PJs in awe that she gets to write full time.

Subscribe to the newsletter for a free short story: http://smarturl.it/SKQnewsletter

More about Sue:

http://smarturl.it/SKQwebsite

http://smarturl.it/SKQonFB

http://smarturl.it/SKQontwitter

 

TOUR WIDE GIVEAWAY

A set of two paperbacks

Episode 1 (Season One)

Episode 10 (Season Two)

Enter HERE

 

 

 

RELEASE DAY- Enticing the Spymaster

Enticing the SpymasterEnticing the Spymaster Button RDB 300 x 225

War Girls, Book Two

Julie Rowe

Genre: Historical romance, medical romance

Publisher: Carina Press

Date of Publication: June 3, 2013

ISBN: 978-14268-9556-2

ASIN: B00BZPJSV6

Number of pages: 153

Word Count: 34,000

Cover Artist: Millennium Promotions, Inc.

Amazon Amazon Canada

B & N: http://bit.ly/ZxH4sL

iTunes: http://bit.ly/XNVg2s

Book Description:

German-occupied Brussels, Belgium, April 1915

Judith Goddard is hiding in plain sight. A dual citizen with family ties to Belgian royalty and the British military, she works as a Red Cross nurse in a German hospital, learning what she can, ever fearful her true allegiance will be discovered.

British Expeditionary Force Captain Michael Lawrence is on a mission to rescue the daughter of his mentor. He doesn’t expect to find a strong beautiful woman in place of the naïve girl whose love he rejected years earlier.

Jude is shocked when Michael turns up in her hospital, wounded and in German uniform. Though he broke her heart, she agrees to flee Belgium with him—she has information about an imminent attack that she must deliver to the British War Office, before it’s too late.

Posing as a married couple, Jude and Michael journey to the border, in constant danger of discovery—and of giving in to their mutual passion…

EnticingTheSpymasterDraft2Excerpt:

Brussels, Belgium

April 16, 1915

The ballroom of the Belgian Royal Palace had rarely been this full. Not even on special occasions when the royal family invited guests from around the world to celebrate momentous events.

Judith Goddard stood in the main doorway, looked out across the room and swallowed a mouthful of worry and fear. So many men in the room, most young, one hundred sixty-three at last count, but she wished it were empty. She wished none of them were here at all.

A ballroom like this should be filled with music, light and elegantly dressed couples dancing to an orchestra. Not rows of wounded men, their clothing torn and bloody, their groans and harsh whispers the only sounds. But the rank smell of burnt flesh and old blood overpowered everything else. She stepped inside, approaching one of the wounded who’d just come out of surgery, and wondered if the stench would ever come out of her hair or clothes.

Possibly, if one used enough soap.

Would it be possible to wash away the smells of suffering and death from her memory?

Unlikely.

Since the war started, she’d seen a never-ending stream of wounded. The palace had been completely overrun by the German army at the beginning of their aggression. First as a military headquarters, but within weeks the larger ballroom had been converted into a hospital.

She focused on the man she was caring for, bandaging his leg where the surgeon had stitched the skin closed. There wasn’t time for woolgathering.

There wasn’t even time for regrets.

“Nurse? Nurse, can you help my friend?”

Judith looked up…and discovered the last man she expected.

Shock held her immobile for several long moments as she gazed into the face of Captain Michael Lawrence, a protégé of her father. A man who shouldn’t be in the middle of an enemy hospital, miles behind enemy lines, surrounded by enemy soldiers. A man she’d been in love with for years.

Her heart pounded out a fast tango in her ears as she stared at him wide eyed, taking in his muddy clothing. Michael, a proud member of the British Expeditionary Force, was wearing a German infantry uniform.

Frowning, she opened her mouth to demand an answer to the first of many questions, but he spoke before she could with a sad, tired lift to one side of his lips.

“Please, a little water.”

Wearing a German uniform and speaking German with the accent of a man from Hamburg.

Behind him, a wave of men staggered into the once elegant ballroom. Some on their own, most in pairs and threes holding each other up, all of them wounded. Nurses directed them to any open space.

She swallowed her questions. “Yes, of course. I’ll be right there.” She tied a knot in the bandage, securing it around the stump that used to be a leg. Thank God the soldier was still unconscious.

Watching Michael out of the corner of her eye, she washed her hands in a basin of bloody water with a narrow bar of strong soap, then shook them dry. He led her across the ballroom, manoeuvring around gurneys, cots and pallets littering the floor.

Michael brought her to a man whose breathing was visibly fast and shallow. She grabbed a canteen of clean water and knelt next to him. “Here’s the water. Drink it slow.”

He pursed his mouth to catch the precious liquid, but his lips wavered and his head dropped back so it spilled across his face.

About the Author:Julie_Rowe (1)

Julie Rowe’s first career as a medical lab technologist in Canada took her to the North West Territories and northern Alberta, where she still resides. She loves to include medical details in her romance novels, but admits she’ll never be able to write about all her medical experiences because, “No one would believe them!”. In addition to writing contemporary and historical medical romance, and fun romantic suspense for Entangled Publishing and Carina Press, Julie has a short story in the Mammoth Book of Medical Romance.

Her book SAVING THE RIFLEMAN (WAR GIRLS) won the novella category of the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence. Her writing has also appeared in several magazines such as Today’s Parent, Reader’s Digest (Canada), and Canadian Living.

You can reach her at www.julieroweauthor.com   , on Twitter @julieroweauthor or at her Facebook page: www.facebook.com/JulieRoweAuthor

Website: www.julieroweauthor.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JulieRoweAuthor

Twitter: @julieroweauthor

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/julieroweauthor/character-inspiration/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5272597.Julie_Rowe

ANOMALY – Release Day!

Anomaly Button 300 x 225Anomaly

The Birthright Series Book One

JC Emery

Genre: New Adult Urban Fantasy

Publisher: Left Break Press

Date of Publication: 4/19/2013

Number of pages: 310

Word Count: 81,000

Cover Artist: Gonet Design

Book Description:

How far would you go to save your sister?

Life as a college senior is stressful enough. Between mid-terms, stupid boys, and a rare blood condition, Eliza Landry is just trying to figure out what normal is—whatever that means—when she discovers that vampires aren’t just a thing of legend.

In a matter of moments, her life changes forever when she and her older sister Kate suffer a vampire attack which leaves Eliza with two puncture wounds on her neck and an allergy to sunlight. But she’s still human, or at least she thinks she is. It doesn’t really matter—her main concern is that her sister is missing.

Sorrow turns to obsession, leading Eliza to piece together the puzzle of that terrifying night. Even stumbling upon a millennia-old vampire assassin named Luke Conrad who either wants to kiss her or kill her (she can’t decide) cannot deter her.

When bodies start piling up and one of them is supposedly Kate, Eliza and Luke set out to discover who is behind the attacks. Soon, Eliza is drawn into the dark and dangerous world of the undead, with no guarantee she’ll make it out alive, and no doubt that she won’t like what she finds.

EXCERPT:Cover with Tag- Final (3-9-13)

“I take it you’re not a runner,” he said. “Despite all evidence to the contrary.” He eyed my wardrobe. It was obvious how disproportionately balanced our strengths were. I had wished that I could have at least claimed intellectual superiority—knowledge of literature or physics—something that gave me an edge. But I had nothing. I wasn’t sure I could even school Luke in the art of the curtsey considering he was so damn old.

I hated to be the sick girl—always the sick girl—looked on with pity. I was always poor Eliza who had to have another surgery; poor Eliza who had to spend a month in bed; poor Eliza who needed another transplant. For years and years I had just wanted one relationship in my life where I could be on equal footing with someone and not be sick. Of course Luke and I hadn’t been on equal footing—he vampire and me human, but here I was about to really tip the scales in his favor.

“Um, no,” I said. Luke was stealing glances in my direction. “I’ve never been a fan,” I said and left it at that. I just wasn’t ready to talk to him about my illness yet. Once people knew, the way they saw and treated me always changed. I couldn’t even have a single beer without receiving disapproving looks.

“I wasn’t a runner in my former life, either,” he said. “But then, before I became vampire, in that time, exercise wasn’t a part of a person’s life the way it is now. Exercise used to just be something that people did. It wasn’t something they set aside time for. A woman your shape would have been much desired in my time.”

I turned and glared at him. He must have been joking. A thousand years old and yet he hadn’t figured out that commenting on a woman’s size—whether positive or negative—was never a good thing?

Damned fool.

“What I had intended to say,” he said with great care in his voice, “Was that a healthy sized woman was the great ideal for every man. A thin woman was often sickly and unable to bear her husband’s children.” I waved him off and kept walking.

“You’re digging yourself a deeper hole. Just give it up,” I said with more bite in my tone than I had intended.

“What is the appropriate response for a man to give to a woman whose size he has just insulted?” he asked. The look on his face was completely serious. I took several deep breaths and tried to relax myself a little bit. I probably should have told him I was sick because holy crap this was just getting worse and worse. Low self-esteem for one hundred, Alex.

“There is nothing any man can say to make it better once he’s opened his mouth to begin with,” I said with a shake of my head. Having Kate as my older sister had only made me more critical of my body image. Kate had always been thin and fairly athletic. She was energetic and the worst thing she had endured medically was when she had donated a kidney and bone marrow to me when I was a teenager. Even then, after weeks of lying around the house in recovery, she didn’t gain an ounce. I, however, had to go up a pants size. It was hardly fair that not only had I been sick, but I had been blessed with more than my fair share of curves as well.

“That seems a bit unfair,” he said and stuck his hands in his pockets. His shoulders dropped and he seemed to withdraw into himself.

“Welcome to the twenty-first century,” I said and decided to keep my mouth closed for the rest of the trip.

img_0991-edit (1)About the Author:

As a child, JC was fascinated by things that went bump in the night. As they say, some things never change. Now, as an adult, she divides her time between the sexy law men, mythical creatures, and kick-ass heroines that live inside her head and pursuing her bachelor’s degree in English. As it is for most writers, finding balance is a challenge. JC is a San Francisco Bay Area native, but has also called both Texas and Louisiana home. These days she rocks her flip flops year round in Northern California and can’t imagine a climate more beautiful.
With the support and encouragement of her parents and sister, JC set out to figure out what she wanted to do when she grew up. Most days, the jury is still out; however the thing that stuck with her no matter what she pursued was her love of the written word.

JC writes adult, new adult, and young adult fiction. She dabbles in many different genres including science fiction, horror, chick lit, and murder mysteries, yet she is most enthralled by supernatural stories– and everything has at least a splash of romance.

http://www.jcemery.com

http://twitter.com/jc_emery

http://www.facebook.com/jcemeryauthor

http://www.goodreads.com/jc_emery

Release Day: Breathe by Elena Dillon

Breathe Tour Button 300 x 225Breathe
by Elena Dillon

Genre: Young Adult Romantic Suspense

Word Count: 62,300

Cover Artist: Alexa Dillon

Smashwords

 

Book Description:

Jasmine’s life wasn’t normal for a 16 year old girl.  It hadn’t been normal since the murder of her older sister, Daisy, two years ago. Her life had been changed forever. The monster that murdered Daisy was never caught.  That was the reason her family decided to move away from their hometown in Southern California, to start over.  Hopefully in a place where the last name Rourke wouldn’t bring on staring or judgment or morbid curiosity.

In Lafayette, Louisiana things are quite a bit different but in a good way.  Good manners, Cajun accents and a whole lot of Southern Hospitality all make her think things are going in the right direction.  On top of that the most gorgeous boy she has ever met is interested in her. Her new friends are better than she could have hoped for even if she is worried about what they might think when they find out who she is.  Life would be perfect if odd things didn’t keep happening.  Creepy phone calls, texts, and flowers in her locker start adding up quickly to something terrifying. Could the Monster have followed them to Lafayette? Was he coming after her this time?  Maybe she was just worrying unnecessarily…or not.

Excerpt:

Chapter 1

Most days I can almost forget someone murdered my sister. I try to go through every day like a normal sixteen-year-old. I can eat breakfast, go to school, do homework, but then something will remind me that my family will never be the same. I’ll see my mom looking out the kitchen window—she has this blank look and her clothes are hanging on her. I worry she doesn’t eat enough to stay alive. Or I catch a glimpse of the picture on the coffee table we took three Halloweens ago, when Daisy and I dressed up like crayons, and Caedan and Lily were Skittles. It seems like a long time ago, and then, again, I remember it like it just happened.

We finally moved two weeks ago. Mom decided we couldn’t continue to live in Burbank. Besides the obvious reason that Daisy’s murderer was never caught, someone was always staring at us with that look that said, “Isn’t it so sad what happened to the Rourke family?” But you know in their hearts they are thinking how glad they are it didn’t happen to them. It’s obvious they’re thinking my mom must have done something wrong. She wasn’t a good enough parent, didn’t supervise Daisy enough, didn’t call the police soon enough. They wanted to believe the murder of a teenage girl happened for a reason and they could avoid it, if they just did everything right. The thing is, I think the exact opposite is probably true.

So, three months ago, we had a family meeting. We got out a map of the US and each chose a city and state. Mom and I did research on ours, Caedan picked his based on name only, and Lily did the spin-around-and-wherever-your-finger-lands routine. Thankfully, we pulled mine out of the hat. I don’t know how I would have felt living in Smackover, Arkansas. Caedan thought it was hilarious. He is so twelve.

Tonight, my mom drove us all to Wal-Mart in our new town of Lafayette, Louisiana. School supplies were the one thing we hadn’t shopped for in the last two weeks, and school was starting tomorrow.

“Jas, take your brother and sister to the school supplies, while I go grab stuff for lunches this week, will you, hon?” my mom asked, as she walked away without waiting for my reply.

“I was going to—” I clamped my mouth shut. She didn’t even hear me.

I was stuck with this life now. I love my brother and sister, but I hadn’t always been the oldest and in charge of herding them. These are the times Daisy’s absence hits home the most with me. She had been good with them. I used to slip into the background. Do my own thing. Sneak off to the books and browse, while she did her Junior Mommy act. I’m less patient and easily irritated. I’m angry at Daisy for leaving me here with this mess. I don’t want to be the responsible one. I want my life back. I just inherited her spot and, honestly, I don’t want it. Not that anything is going to change it now.

“I want to get all matching Justin Bieber school supplies,” Lily decided, as we found the school supplies section. The place was crawling with kids and parents getting all their last-minute items. I thought we would be lucky to find filler paper and some pencils, as picked over as it all seemed.

Caedan was pushing the cart around the corners and down the aisles with the precision of a NASCAR driver on Sunday. He knew that one incident, and his driving privileges would be revoked. I was trying to find Justin Bieber anything, as Caedan turned onto the next aisle. Suddenly, I heard a crash and a loud oomph as I rushed around the other side.

“Caedan!” I shouted.

“Jas, I’m sorry I didn’t know he was there. It was an accident,” he pleaded.

“So sorry,” I mumbled to the man pushing the other cart. He shot me a look and moved past us. “That’s it! I’m driving.” But when I looked down at Lily, who had been walking next to Caedan, her eyes were big and full of tears.

“My Justin shirt!” she cried out. I looked down, and in the collision her purple slushy had spilled all over her shirt.

“Don’t be such a baby! It is just a shirt,” Caedan told her with all the sensitivity of a pre-teenage boy.

“Shut up, Caedan. I hate you.” Lily shoved him in the chest.

“Purple is not your color, Lils.” He was looking at his twin with pure disgust.

People next to us were starting to stare. I could feel the blood rushing to my face. Why did anyone have children anyway? They were cretins. By this time Lily was starting to melt down.

“Okay, okay, we are going to fix it,” I hurriedly told her. Lily had always been emotional, but since Daisy’s murder she was hypersensitive to anything upsetting her world, and Justin Bieber was her world.

Into this chaos, my mother arrived. In the past, she could handle these situations quietly and easily. The twins fighting, or Daisy and I arguing over the mess in our room, would not even get us a raised voice. She was an RN for geriatric patients, and she was used to calming situations and peacemaking. Since Daisy’s death, even simple sibling arguments seemed overwhelming for her.

“What is going on?” she said between clenched teeth. Lily chose this moment to burst into full tears, while Caedan started protesting about it not being his fault and how mean I was not to let him drive. “I guess it’s too much to ask for you to get one thing done for me without any uproar,” my mother remarked to me sarcastically. “Jasmine . . .” The use of my full name was never a good sign. “Go to the car and get your sister her sweatshirt, while I bring her to the bathroom to get her cleaned up.” She looked at my brother with narrowed eyes, “You will stand outside the ladies room door with the cart, quietly, while I handle the mess you made. And I don’t want to hear another word from you while we are in this store. Are we clear?”

I made a face at Caedan behind my mother’s back before I whipped around and stomped off to the car. Why was his obnoxious behavior my fault again? Whatever. Being the oldest really was the worst.

As I reached the electronic sliding doors to the outside, I slowed down and caught my breath. It had gotten dark since we had been in the store. After Daisy’s murder I had found myself starting to get anxious in particular situations. Outside in the dark could be a problem, sometimes escalating to panic attacks. I tried to keep these little incidents from my mom. She was definitely starting to pay more attention these days.

I scanned the parking lot quickly to find the car. My breath started to come in short gasps. The car was halfway down an aisle, three rows over . . . and not under a streetlight. Damn! I grabbed my keys out of my purse and stepped into the lot. I would just hurry. I was being ridiculous. This was Lafayette, not Los Angeles. I had nothing to worry about here—lots of miles between us and him.

When I was three feet from our car, “Hey there,” a male voice said from behind me. I jumped and squealed at the same time. I turned around fast with my pepper spray out. Thankfully, I noticed, before I sprayed, that the nozzle was pointed at me.

“Hey, hey, sorry. I just, um . . . saw you drop something . . . um . . . here.” A tall brown-haired boy around my age was holding my mother’s list of school supplies. He kept moving toward me. “I didn’t mean to scare you.”

I kept backing up until my rear end hit the end of our car. “Okay. I, uh . . .” I said weakly. All of a sudden there was a loud buzzing in my ears, and the world started to tilt.

“Whoa.” I heard as everything went black.

I could hear voices around me as I started to wake up.

“Hey, Sleeping Beauty. No time for a nap,” a deep, soothing voice said quietly in my ear. “Trenton, what did you do to her? She fainted dead away.”

I became aware that I wasn’t on the ground, like when I normally wake up from a faint. Since this had happened more than a few times in my teenage life, I found that odd. Due to some hormonal upheaval or whatever, since I hit puberty, fainting had become a fairly common part of my life. But right now, I felt warm, surrounded by the most amazing smell. I was not on the ground with a goose egg on my head as usual. I opened my eyes and saw the most handsome face I’d ever seen. I thought I must still be passed out and was dreaming.

“I was just trying to give her back the paper she dropped, and she acted like I was gonna attack her or somethin’. I don’t know why she fainted. I didn’t touch her—I swear. Why would that happen? I can’t believe you caught her. That was awesome! Is she okay? Do you think there is something wrong with her?” The grating voice kept on until . . .

“Trenton, shut up,” the dream said, still looking into my eyes. I tried to shake my head to wake up and realized I was cradled against his chest like he had swept me up in his arms.

Not a dream then. Crap. I became instantly mortified. “I, uh . . . Can you put me down? Please? I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to faint.” Duh.

“Well, I guess, if you really want me to,” Dream Guy said as he lowered my feet to the ground.

I couldn’t believe he had been holding me while I was passed out. It’s not like I’m so heavy. I’m actually kind of skinny, but I’m five foot nine, and he was holding me in the air like I weighed less than a bag of groceries. Time to make a graceful exit. Or any kind of exit. I probably wouldn’t be able to accomplish graceful. Who was I kidding?

“Do you normally mean to faint?” he asked.

“Um, no. Thanks for catching me. I really have to go,” I babbled, while I searched for my keys.

“Here,” he said, as he carefully handed me the keys.

“Thanks,” I said, as I opened the car and grabbed Lily’s sweatshirt.

“Maybe you should—” he started to say, but I interrupted.

“I’m fine, really. Thanks again.” I shut and locked the door. They were both standing there looking at me like I was nuts. Well, I guess they weren’t far off. This had to be the most ridiculous moment of my life. My face felt like it was burning. I meet the cutest guy ever and what do I do? Faint. Like an idiot. I shouldn’t be shocked.

I gave them a little wave as I ran/walked back to the store. I concentrated on getting inside without looking back. If this day was any indication as to how my life in Lafayette was going to go, I should have closed my eyes and pointed.

About The Author:

Professional Picture MKElena lives and writes in a suburb North of Los Angeles.  She has never lived anywhere besides California which is probably a good thing since she hates being cold and is terrified to drive in the snow. She loves being a wife and a mother to her three kids and three dogs, although really the bulldog is the fourth child who has never matured beyond the toddler stage.

A self-proclaimed nerd, she has been writing since she was a child. She has only recently, however, come out of the closet about this to her family and friends.  They now understand better, but not completely, why she talks about characters in stories as if they are real people.

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It’s MY turn – New Release Contest “The WARRIOR”

After months (and I mean MONTHS) of challenging aspects in my life, I’ve finally put them behind me – or at least toughened up enough to trudge through  – and released the long overdue second book in my Clans of Tagus series, “The WARRIOR”.

A short summation of my trials without going into a lot of details: a premature grandson with a rare genetic disorder which has, and will, require constant care. He’s a sweet, sweet baby. An angel, truly. But his life will not be an easy one so my hubby and I have decided to remain in the Carolinas. No more plans to return to Arizona, a long held personal dream.

But with that decision, I started a new course through uncharted territory. A little scary. An emotional tug-o-war. A complete alteration to my carefully planned future.

I’m ready to move forward now after weeks and months of NICU, specialists, worrying and resignation that life has taken on a different form with new priorities. Since I’d put my writing on hold while devoting time and energy to family, and ignored promotion, networking and creative plans for future books, my book sales, of course, took a nose dive. Summer is typically slow for digital sales. Mine was almost non-existent.

No problem. I’ll rebound. Finish edits and rewrites of “The WARRIOR”. A good plan until I hurt my shoulder. Since I was reduced to five and ten minute sessions at the keyboard before my fingers went numb . . . actually only two fingers because I couldn’t use all of them . . . it was a slow, depressing time. I considered walking away from writing altogether.

But some good meds, rehabilitation exercises and a glass of wine or two finally restored my usually optimistic attitude if not my complete mobility.

The beginning of 2012 was fantastic. The middle, devastating. The ending . . . a rebirth. And birth can be painful. Why do you think babies cry when they first come into this world?

“The WARRIOR” is now available on Amazon for only .99 cents and will soon be up at Barnes & Noble and Smashwords.  Please pass along the news.  I was moving upward at a rapid rate of speed when I took my tumble. Falling that hard and that fast hurts – but it taught me some valuable lessons.

  • Expect the unexpected.
  • Help those who are just starting out, because starting over is the same thing.
  • It really doesn’t matter if you fall, as long as you get back up.
  • Fear is as big a motivator as success.

There are many more bullets I could add to my list but I think you get the point. The last thing I want to say is “THANK YOU” to all my fans, friends and peers who kept me afloat when I thought I was going down for the count. I’m humbled by your support.

And to show my thanks, I’m giving away  ecopy sets of The GATEKEEPER and The WARRIOR to two lucky participants. Just leave a comment to enter. I’ll choose the winners on Christmas Day!

Deb

warrior3-001

The WARRIOR
by Deb Sanders

Genre: Urban Fantasy

33,000 words


AMAZON

SMASHWORDS

Coming soon to 

Barnes & Noble

 

DESCRIPTION:

Artimon, a Tagusian Warrior first introduced in The Gatekeeper (Book One), is working with the Underground on Earth to stop an impending invasion by the ruthless Warlords. When his investigation into a band of insurgents hits a snag, he reluctantly pairs with Zara, a Dark Fae archer with her own agenda for finding the rebel’s lair. After revealing her sister, Lily, is imprisoned at a secret underground location and has been forced to use her telepathic powers to contact the Warlord leader on Tagus, Artimon agrees to help Zara rescue Lily in exchange for information on the rebel’s bunker.

Artimon and Zara exhibit instant dislike for each other. Having shunned emotions in their quest for combat mental toughness, they attempt to override their hostility for the sake of the mission. But the two warriors become locked in a battle for competitive prowess and leadership. As tempers flare and emotions are unleashed, they soon find themselves fighting a different battle, one of intense attraction and sexual desire.

After Zara locates her comatose sister, she realizes the Warlord leader has imprisoned Lily’s consciousness on Tagus, and if her physical body and psyche are not reunited, she will soon die.

Artimon seeks out Kylie, the Gatekeeper, for assistance. They devise a risky plan to enter Tagus through a secret Fae portal at Ben Bulben, Ireland. Zara assumes they are on a rescue mission to free Lily but Artimon is determined to kill his nemesis from youth, Gunter, now leader of the Warlords.

Events push the two warriors toward a terrifying confrontation where their lives and love hang in the balance, as does the future of two worlds – a confrontation where one warrior will win but only at the expense of the other.