January 31, 2016

Excerpt & Giveaway! Favorite Toy by Louise Lyons

Determined to stay single, Dean Simpson and his best friend Ryan have been playing a game, where each man chooses a potential hook-up for the other, usually someone nothing like their usual type. But with Ryan now off the market, Dean agrees to one final round of the game and allows his friend to choose his toy for the evening.

Casper Mancuso is about as far from Dean’s type as he can get. Casper is pretty, flamboyant, and attention-seeking, but sexy with it. Dean decides one night can’t hurt, but when Casper makes it clear his aim is the same as Dean’s – to have one bit of fun and then move on – Dean finds himself surprisingly disappointed.

With both men keen to avoid a relationship at all costs, it seems there can be no chance for anything between them. And yet the pair are drawn to each other and despite some hurtful comments and a very public argument, they just can’t stay away from each other. Eventually Dean is forced to admit that the very antithesis of what he usually likes is exactly what he’s been waiting for.

My heart sank as one of the other trainers from the gym caught up to me. "Wait up, Dean. I'll go with you."

I glanced at Mark and nodded. "Okay." 

"Where are you headed?"

"Not sure yet. I just wanted some fresh air. Maybe Subway." It was the first thing that came into my head, although I really didn't fancy a sandwich.

"I could go for that. Meatball marinara. Mmm."

"I like the tuna." 

"I always have cheese and slather it in ranch dressing, and get a cookie." Casper's words made me smile and I wondered if he'd be having Subway today. Shit.

"Are we eating in, or taking it back to work?" Mark pushed open the door and walked inside. 

"Um, maybe sit outside here?" I followed him to the counter, lining up behind a family ordering an early lunch. Most of the tables both inside and outside were empty and I stared up at the menu board as I waited, even though I knew I'd order tuna. Mark bought a foot-long meatball marinara with cheese and salad and I requested a six inch with cheese, salad, and ranch dressing. As we sat down at a table outside the window, I looked around and caught sight of Casper, just yards away and heading right for us. Automatically I ducked my head and unwrapped my sandwich, hoping he wouldn't see me. My heart thumped wildly and my dry mouth made me wish I'd ordered a drink. 

"Are you okay?" Mark raised his eyebrows.


Casper entered Subway, apparently not having noticed me. I'd kick myself if I didn't speak to him. I might not get another chance. The fact that he'd happened to turn up at this exact moment, when he could have gone anywhere, or not even taken a break at this time, was too much of a coincidence for me to throw away. Hesitating, I debated going into the shop to speak to him, or waiting for him to come out where Mark might hear. While I thought about it, Casper got his sandwich and came out again and then I had no choice. I jumped up quickly, scraping my chair noisily on the pavement, and his eyes immediately met mine. He halted, half in and half out of the door, then shuffled forward to get out of the way of someone trying to enter.

Mark looked up at me and frowned. "Dean?"

"I'll be back in a minute." I moved away from the table toward Casper, aware that only about six feet separated us from Mark. "Can I speak to you for a minute?"

"What about?" His eyes narrowed.

"I wanted to say sorry. I─"

"Don't bother. Like we both said, it was a hook up." His voice was much too clear and I glanced anxiously at Mark, who stared back at me with wide eyes.

"Casper…shh. Can we just…?"

"Don't shush me!" Clutching his wrapped sandwich fiercely in one hand, he planted the other hand on his hip and glared. "I don't know why you even bothered speaking to me! You slept with me for a bet, and we all know what your real type is. Don't think I didn't see you with that blond guy on Friday."

"Fuck." Grabbing his arm, I tugged him a few steps along the street until he wrenched free. "Thanks a fucking bunch. You just outed me to one of my workmates."

"Oh!" His scowl vanished and his cheeks flushed. "Shit. I didn't know. I'm sorry, Dean."

"Forget it. Like you said, I shouldn't have bothered." Mortified, I turned away and went back to the table. Mark's expression said it all. I didn't need to hear anything he might have to say, but I listened anyway. Casper had already disappeared.

Louise Lyons comes from a family of writers. Her mother has a number of poems published in poetry anthologies, her aunt wrote poems for the church, and her grandmother sparked her inspiration with tales of fantasy. Louise first ventured into writing short stories at the grand old age of 8, mostly about little girls and ponies. She branched into romance in her teens, and MM romance a few years later, but none of her work saw the light of day until she discovered FanFiction in her late 20s. 
Posting stories based on some of her favorite movies, provoked a surprisingly positive response from readers. This gave Louise the confidence to submit some of her work to publishers, and made her take her writing “hobby” more seriously. 
Louise lives in the UK, about an hour north of London, with a mad Dobermann, and a collection of tropical fish and tarantulas. She works in the insurance industry by day, and spends every spare minute writing. She is a keen horse-rider, and loves to run long-distance. Some of her best writing inspiration comes to her, when her feet are pounding the open road. She often races into the house afterward, and grabs pen and paper to make notes. 
Louise has always been a bit of a tomboy, and one of her other great loves is cars and motorcycles. Her car and bike are her pride and joy, and she loves to exhibit the car at shows, and take off for long days out on the bike, with no one for company but herself.

Excerpt & Giveaway! Anything More Than Now, Sutton College #2 by Rebecca Paula

Reagan Landry is months away from college graduation, but instead of excitement, she’s frozen by the fear of letting go — of her ex-boyfriend, of the comfortable life she created for herself in Portland, of the years-long search for her older sister who abandoned her as a homeless teen. When she’s finally forced to decide what’s next, Reagan is met with another complication — her ex’s best friend, Noah Burke, who seems determined that she embraces what could be instead of what has been.

Drunkenly hooking up with his best friend’s ex, Reagan, is a mistake, but being secretly in love with her is so much worse when things seem one-sided. A disenchanted frat boy about to fail out of college, Noah has been living out someone else’s dream after a horrible accident five years earlier. Just when he thinks he’s lost any chance he has with Reagan, she surprises him by agreeing to spend the summer together at his family’s ranch in Montana.

And suddenly what started out as a complication between them becomes serious...until the past starts ripping apart their future.


I pore over my senior thesis as I stand behind at the checkout counter at the library, taking another big gulp of my Americano. I should lay off the caffeine but between searching for work and pulling extra hours at Zola so I can pay Greg, sleep is more a concept than a reality for me right now. 

Another bleary-eyed student waits, slowly sliding a book toward me, leaning on the counter as if he might take a nap at any minute. I print the slip and close it between the pages, already taking off for the jar of antibacterial gel at the end of the counter when I notice the body barreling toward mine through the busy lobby of the library. 

The crowd cuts away to Noah striding up to me. It’s only been two days since Beau moved out but it seems like forever ago since I’ve laid eyes on Noah. 

I steel myself, straightening my spine as his eyes connect with mine. It feels as though I have a balloon expanding in my chest, close to bursting. I purposely hold my breath, refusing to allow myself to be such a girl. I shouldn’t be so happy to see him.

Noah doesn’t say anything, only grabs my hand and hauls me behind him. I try to tug away, dragging my feet.

“Stop being such a caveman, jerk.” I speak to his back because he doesn’t stop, only leads us farther back into the stacks away from the eyes of everyone else. “Use your words,” I snap, feeling myself flush as someone points to us before we take a sharp corner.

His T-shirt is wrinkled, his jeans loose. I’m hit with the smell of him, of man…of Noah. I’m so caught up in trying to put words to that that I miss we’ve stopped. Well, I do until his hands grip my face and guide my lips to his in a hungry kiss. 

It doesn’t stop, this kiss, doesn’t pause. It’s one speed—more. It’s deep in its desperation and that balloon in my chest suddenly bursts and I deflate, melting back against the book stacks. I stop fighting and let my mouth follow his. 

The pressure from his fingertips on my cheeks pops my eyes open. I watch him as he loses himself. My neck is tilted back and I feel a bit broken, like I’m an ill-repaired doll, my limbs bent this way and that. Maybe he senses that because he loosens his grip and slows his lips, but it’s still consistently full of want. 

I try to focus on his shoulders beneath my hands, how steady they are. His body is a homestead to me, a bonfire signaling me to return. I slip my hands around his neck, skimming just below his collar to feel the burn of his skin against my cold hands. What I feel, what’s happening is so confusing. It’s so good but I can’t…I feel as if I’m being pitched up in the sky, the ground miles below. 

Noah doesn’t stop and he doesn’t let me catch up to wherever his head is at. His fingers reach down and brush at the hem of my skirt, quietly moaning into my mouth as he raises them higher, bunching the fabric high up on my thighs. 

“I’ve been thinking of this for the past twelve hours.” His lips leave my mouth, trail down my neck and nip at my collarbone. His lips mirror that path, making me ache for his mouth against on mine as he sears my skin with his mouth and teeth. A simple path of kisses from left to right like eclipses. 

I sigh, closing my eyes. He curls his hands under my skirt, grabbing my ass and lifting me, pulling my hips to meet his. Noah traps the unnatural sound I make in another heated kiss.

“Someone is going to hear you, screamer. Be quiet.”

I pull at the nape of his hair, wanting to fight, but wanting to continue more. “We’re in Poetry, no one’s going to come around.”

His soft chuckle cuts across my jaw in a hot slice. I don’t know what he’s doing to me. I think I’m falling apart. I think my brain has stopped working. 

It’s only when he teases, “Use your words, Landry,” that I realize I have lost the ability to put one word in front of another. It has a lot to do with the book spines pressing into my back, his hands roaming over my body, pushing my shirt to skirt over my ribs. 

Noah’s undressing me in the library. 

The thought sort of tumbles around me, pushing to make room in my head and my chest. I can’t figure out the disconnect. Why I hated him until he stormed up to me and dragged me here. Why I keep trying to build up this space between us when…

“I don’t like you,” I say, breaking away. 

Noah ducks his head into my shoulder, his own moving up and down as he tries to catch his breath. “I had to go. He’s my best friend.”

I bow my head to rest against his. Without thinking, I kiss his temple. 

And that’s what unspins my lie. That brief, sweet touch of my lips. I know he knows now. For two people so obsessed with using the right words, I can’t admit that I’m lying. I can’t even admit that I missed him. 

And I did. God, I did. 

Noah slowly lets me down to the floor, slowly starts dressing me again, covering up my flesh like the secret between us. He tries to put me back together, but it’s too late for that. My lips are sore and swollen, my head too dizzy, and my heart is hammering against my chest. And the feeling—the one I’d rather not call it what it is—is full in my lower belly. 

I would have fucked him in the stacks without caring who saw. That’s what Noah does to me. He makes me forget what it’s like to have my feet firmly on the ground. He’s possibility.

He cups my chin, pressing his thumb over my swollen lips, retracing the spot where he just branded me as his. I’m not an idiot, I felt it too. I spun into the possibility of letting Noah into my life with that kiss. I crashed into the reality that I’m already his. 

“Who are you trying to fool, pretty girl?”

I dart my eyes to the floor, afraid to admit that when he walks away, he’ll be taking something with him today. Something new, like a sliver of my heart. 

“I had to go. I had to bring him home.” He clears his throat, his shoulders visibly tensing. “But this isn’t about him, is it? Not really.”

I open my mouth and sputter for a few seconds, so caught up in what I want to say and what needs to be said. I still end up saying the obvious. 

“He broke her heart.” My throat actually starts to close up, at least it feels as if that’s what’s happening. “He just left and she’s lost now.” I reach behind me, running my hands over the spines of old poetry books, forgotten years ago. But at least they’re comforting, at least there will always be stories in the world. 

He’s quiet, studying me. “I came back though.”

My eyes snap up to his and my arms go slack. Hell, my whole body does. I’m suddenly a marionette that’s lost its strings. I fall to pieces on the floor.

Noah backs away and scratches the back of his neck. “I’ve had a long drive and I—”

“You haven’t been back to the frat house?”

He snorts and a tiny smile plays at his lips. “You never listen to me, do you?”

I look at him blankly, confused. 

“I drove straight here. Couldn’t think of anything else but—” he leans in close, his mouth teasing the air around my ear, so close yet so far away,“—kissing you.”

“So you did.” I rub my hands over my lips as he heads down the aisle. 

“So I did.” He pauses at the end of the aisle. “Don’t be a stranger, Reagan.”

But that’s exactly the problem. We’re not really strangers anymore. That lie has been shattered too.

Rebecca writes smart, emotional New Adult and historical romances featuring flawed characters struggling to find their place in the world, from Paris to Portland. She’s a lover of rainy days, an unabashed anglophile, and a devote Earl Grey tea drinker. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and their very spoiled cat, Bella. A wanderlust connoisseur, Rebecca can be caught daydreaming about her next travel adventure when not writing.


Rebecca loves hearing from readers and writers. You can follow her on Twitter @beckapaula or find out more about her and her books at www.rebeccapaula.com.

January 30, 2016

~ In The Spotlight! Coming Soon: Debt by Rachel Dunning ~

The Debt Collector

I pay my debts, and I expect others to. 

I was raised in the slums of London, I knew nothing of privilege. My father was murdered when I was seventeen. Morty figured my father's passing meant I would automatically take on dad's debts. I refused. 

And I paid for that refusal. 

So did my sister. 

So now I fight. All I know how to do is fight. The best cash is in the states, so that's where I am now. A big fish called Vito came along offering me a "favor" when I arrived.

Another debt.

I paid for that one too. 

I knew Kyla Hensley would be trouble when I met her. But I wanted her. I could see through the falsehood of her wannabe-slutty clothes and her sexy legs. So I chased her. 

Besides, trouble is my middle name. 

Kyla Hensley

I was brought up in privilege, but I lacked everything else. My father is a business tycoon who buys and sells and doesn't care who gets rolled over in the process. 

I never knew my mother, and all I have of her is a photo with a note scrawled on the back in French saying "I'm sorry." The only Female Figure I had growing up is my dad's wife who is a bleach blond with seven boob jobs. We never bonded.

I drink. I party. I meet guys.

But I wasn't always like that. 

I've had a string of lovers in the last few years, the worst and most recent of which was Vince Somerset. My best friend Vera was dating a guy called Rory Cansoom who is the opposite of Vince in so many ways, and yet so the same. 

She and I hit the road for the summer, getting away from the two college psychos and just trying to have some fun. 

But there's a funny thing about trouble, the more you run from it, the more it finds you. 

Which is when I met the Debt Collector

It was only supposed to be sex. He made that clear. I made that clear. 

That's all it was supposed to be.

I never expected to fall in love. I never expected to fall so deeply, madly, uncomfortably in love with a man who is wrong, so wrong for me. 

And yet...so unbelievably right.


“How long you staying?” Vera asks.

“Don’t know. He asked me to stay.”

Vera cocks an eyebrow, looking down at me with folded arms and knitted brows. 

“What?” I say.

She shakes her head. “You’ve been here all night, Kyla. It’s bad enough you stormed into that ring for a dude you don’t know shit about.”

He asked me to stay. “Just...let him wake up...and then... I don’t know.” I just freaked out, and I don’t know why I freaked out, and now I want to know that he’s not frickin brain-dead.

“Did he at least say anything when you went in there?”

“He, uhm, looked at my boobs.”

Vera can’t stop herself from smiling. “He looked at your boobs.”


“That’s all he did?”

“My legs, too.”

“Dude’s been out the whole night and the first thing he thinks of is a booty call.”


“He is magnetic and an Alpha to his core.”
Lunaland Books ☆☆☆☆☆ Review

“I was sucked into this book from page one!
“The Debt Collector is sexy as sin and the ultimate Alpha male!!”
Alpha Book Club ☆☆☆☆☆ Review

Rachel Dunning hit the scene in August 2013 and is the author of the highly praised Naive Mistakes Series, Truthful Lies Trilogy, Johnny Series and the paranormal romance series, Mind Games.

A prolific writer, she sticks to stories where Alpha Males aren’t pricks and where women have guts.

She’s lived on two different continents, speaks three different languages, and met the love of her life on the internet. In other words, romance is in her blood.
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Excerpt & Giveaway! Thirst: Blood of my Blood by R.P. Channing

~ Kira Sutherland ~

After a near fatal accident (and getting cheated on by her 'boyfriend'), and beating up the lead cheerleader (with whom the boyfriend cheated...), and being labeled as having 'issues' in her school because she, uhm, sees ghosts, Kira is left with two choices: 

1. Continue her 'therapy' (where she's told the ghost is a hallucination and also gets her legs ogled too often...) 


2. Go to Starkfield Academy, a boarding school for "Crazies and Convicts" (as the social media sites call them.)

She chooses the latter...

~ Cory Rand ~

Cory Rand has not had an easy life. His mother died in a car accident when he was twelve, and so did his mother's best friend...sort of. You see, Janice made a promise to take care of Cory just before she died, and so she lingers. Undead. A ghost that watches out for him.

Brought up in an abusive home, Cory quickly falls into a life of disreputable behavior. After his third offense (which was prompted by a girl, as usual - he has a weakness) he's left with two choices: 

1. Be tried as an adult and share a cell with a guy named Bubba (he thinks...) 


2. Go to Starkfield Academy, which Cory is pretty sure is run by vampires. But, hey, at least he'll get an education.

He chooses the latter...

It's at Starkfield that Kira meets Cory Rand, a boy with an insatiable Rage who sees ghosts, too. As well as other things, other things from his past, things that confuse him, things like fire and witches and demons.

Things he's always ignored. 

Until now.

The Therapist

“So, this...ghost,” the therapist says. “He, uhm, watches over you?”

Dandy. Another therapy session. Why do I even bother trying to explain this stuff to this guy? 


The doctor (therapist? Psychiatrist? Counselor? Headshrinker? What do they call them these days?) shifts up in his seat. “Are you taking your medication?”


“I see.” He pushes his glasses up his nose. “The hallucinations won’t stop until you do.”

“I like the hallucinations.” Because I know they’re real...

“Kira, I cannot help you unless you let me.”

Help? Oh, man. “I never asked for these sessions. They were forced upon me.”

“You did have some choice.”

I say nothing. We’ve been down this road. 

“I’m going to up your dosage. But it won’t do a thing unless you take the pills.”

I look away. 

“Kira, you’re seventeen now. I know what you went through was difficult, your fear of fire — ”

“This has nothing to do with fire, I told you.”

“You have pyrophobia. Seeing this ghost is merely your way of dealing with — ”

“Do they actually give you guys degrees? I mean, did you actually graduate from somewhere?”

The doc / therapist / shrink pushes his glasses up his nose again, resignation all over his face. Give it a sec, and his eyes will drift down to my legs. 

“Question, doc. In all your years of study, did they ever teach you to listen?”

“You feel I don’t listen?”

Count to ten, Kira. “My toe listens better than you.” And my ghost.

“Is there some thought regarding your toe?”

Someone shoot me. “Doc, I think we’re done.”

He looks at his watch. “We have twenty minutes left.”

“I think we’re done.”

“You know that if you cancel the session you’ll have no choice but to become a boarder at Starkfield Academy. The state demands it.” 

Yeah, because I flipped out at school and kicked Charlene Carverton’s cheerleading ass into a pulp (broken nose, blue eye) after she told me I was fat — and crazy — and that she’d slept with Mike. 

I stand. “I think I’ll join the boarding school, doc. Seeing you is...too infuriating.”

“You’ll need blood tests — ”

“I’ve taken the blood tests. They accepted. Apparently I have no super contagious disease or whatever.”

The doc shuffles in his seat. “You know, Kira, the frustration is all part of the process. That, and the medication.” Someone give this guy a medal. “You’ll regret it.” 

“Not as much as I regret listening to you for the last two months.”

The doc’s eyes go wide, then an evil grin forms on his face. “Starkfield,” he says, “is filled with things...you cannot even imagine existed.”

“What, like ghosts?”

“Ghosts are not real, Kira.”

I roll my eyes. “I’ll take my chances.”

“It’s no walk in the park, young lady. Juvenile delinquents and mentally disturbed kids — you really want to spend the next two years there?”

“At least they won’t medicate me for things I know are real.” Holistic Approach is one of their mottos. 

He shrugs. “As you wish, little lady.” And then...here we go: Bingo! His filthy eyes slide down to my exposed shins, linger there. Again... I’m not sure if he has a thing for redheads with blue eyes, or if he simply pervs over all his patients.

I spin out the room...and walk straight through Jack. 

“How’d it go?” Jack asks.

I look at the secretary staring at me through her horn-rims. Ah, screw it, they think I’m crazy anyway. Might as well play the part. 

“You were listening, how do you think it went?” I say.

“Sorry, what?” the secretary asks.

“I wasn’t talking to you.” 

“I couldn’t hear all of it,” Jack says. 

“Well, I’m going to boarding school. Starkfield Academy.”

“Oh,” the secretary says, “that’s a shame.”

“Hey, I said I wasn’t talking to you.”

“Miss Kira, calm down. She can’t see or hear me.” 

I turn to face him, cock an eyebrow. “You think I don’t know that? Come on, let’s get outta here. At least you’ll be there, at the Academy. No matter what I do, I can’t seem to get rid of you.”

Jack stops. “Miss Kira, you want me to leave?”

I turn back to look at him. “Did I say that? No. Now get a move-on. I need to pack.”

Relief washes over Jack’s translucent face. 

The secretary looks at me, confused. 

I’ve grown to love him, but especially after the accident, ever since he sat by my side in that hospital and talked me out of walking down that tunnel with the white light at the end. But it wasn’t only the tunnel. There were other things I saw in that coma. Scary things. Things I still think about: A circle of stones. A man. A strange name — Elgarth or Elderman or...something. And then spirits. The word GAWWWWHHHHHD. A boom. And a voluptuous nymph who screamed in the sky and howled for blue murder, screeching until her lungs almost burst. 

And then a sudden sense of terrible loss. All gone. Everything. Everything gone.

But the worst of the nightmares was the fire, so much fire. So much horrible, aching fire.

“Are you thinking of it again, Miss Kira?” Jack’s pale eyes look down at me ruefully. 


Jack knows my greatest fear. 

“No,” I lie.

“Miss Kira?”


“Never deny who you are.”

That’s Jack’s favorite cryptic saying. I have no idea what he means.

R P Channing started writing three years ago, but never published anything even after churning out over a million words of fiction. Thirst: Blood of my Blood is the first book he dared to publish. When asked why, he said, “Because it’s the first thing I wrote that my wife actually enjoyed reading.” When not hammering away (most literally) at his keyboard, he can be found buried in a book, reading anything from romance to horror to young adult to non-fiction to comedy.

$20 Amazon Gift Voucher Giveaway
At the back of the book there is a giveaway link. Once the book hits fifty reviews on Amazon, one of those reviewers will win a $20 (US Dollars) Amazon Gift Voucher!

Release Day Blitz! Excerpt & Giveaway: Mountain Charm by Sydney Logan

“True love and sweet whispers, till death do us part;

Send someone to love my Appalachian heart.”

At the age of thirteen, Angelina Clark followed in the footsteps of her ancestors by casting an Appalachian love spell, which promised she would find her true love. A young Angelina had been thrilled to participate in the ritual, but through the years, her father’s untimely death and her mother’s illness have shaken Angelina’s magical faith to its core. Now, as her twenty-first birthday approaches, she refuses to practice her supernatural gifts and no longer believes in the lovecharm.

That is, until Dylan Thomas arrives on her front porch.

Dylan, a Nashville writer, travels to the mountain town of Maple Ridge to unearth the family’s supernatural secrets. While her clairvoyant mother is convinced that Dylan is her daughter’s soul mate, Angelina refuses to see the nosy reporter as anything more than a nuisance.

The two grow closer just as her mother’s health takes a turn for the worse. Faced with mounting medical bills, Angelina is faced with selling the family’s music shop to make ends meet. Desperate to help the woman he loves, Dylan explores his own family tree and finds support from an unlikely source.

Can Dylan prove his love is real—spell or no spell?

The bar was the biggest redneck tavern he’d ever seen in his life, but the music was loud and the beer was cheap.

Which would explain his present state of intoxication.

The bartender offered him another bottle, but Dylan declined. He needed to sober up if he had any chance of driving home tonight.

“You’re that reporter from Nashville, aren’t you? Doing the story on Angelina Clark and her mom.”

Dylan’s body shivered at the mention of her name, and he cursed under his breath. Escaping her, even in a dump like this, was impossible.

“They’re good people,” the bartender said.

Dylan couldn’t remember his name. Mel? Max? It was an M, definitely.

“Yes, they are.”

“Angelina’s a sweetheart,” the man continued. “That ex of hers sure treated her badly.”

Dylan nodded. “He better pray I never see him again, because if I do, I’ll beat the shit out of him.”

The bartender grinned and pointed toward the pool tables. “Is that a promise?”

Dylan couldn’t believe his eyes. Standing there, laughing and drinking with his buddies, was Adam McDonald.

They spotted each other at the same time, and Adam smirked. He said something to his friends and dropped his pool stick before heading to the bar.

“You look like you could use another,” Adam said, his voice slurring a little as he waved to the bartender. He slapped Dylan on the shoulder. “Look, man, I’m going to give you a little advice. If you’re waiting to get into Angelina’s pants, don’t bother, because you’ll be waiting a long time.”

Dylan’s entire body bristled at the mention of her name on the bastard’s lips. He wasn’t so drunk that he didn’t take a moment to consider the consequences of his actions.

This was a redneck bar, and it was quite possible he’d get his ass kicked.

Then he thought of Angelina’s sweet face, her pretty eyes, and her cinnamon kiss.

Worth it.

Sydney Logan is the bestselling author of six novels. She has also penned several short stories and is a contributor to Chicken Soup for the Soul. A lover of music, she fills her playlist with everyone from Johnny Cash to Eminem.

Sydney holds a Master’s degree in Elementary Education and spends her days surrounded by kids and books. A native of East Tennessee, she enjoys playing piano and relaxing on her porch with her wonderful husband and their very spoiled cat.

January 29, 2016

Author Interview, Excerpt & Giveaway: Save of the Game, Scoring Chances #2 by Avon Gale

After last season’s heartbreaking loss to his hockey team’s archrival, Jacksonville Sea Storm goalie Riley Hunter is ready to let go of the past and focus on a winning season. His new roommate, Ethan Kennedy, is a loud New Yorker with a passion for social justice that matches his role as the team’s enforcer. The quieter Riley is attracted to Ethan and has no idea what to do about it.

Ethan has no hesitations. As fearless as his position demands, he rushes into things without much thought for the consequences. Though they eventually warm to their passionate new bond, it doesn’t come without complications. While trying to financially help Ethan, Riley must hide his family’s wealth so as not to hurt Ethan’s immense pride. For their relationship to work, Ethan will need to learn when to keep the gloves on and let someone help him—and Riley will have to learn it’s okay to let someone past his defenses.

Today I’m very lucky to be interviewing Avon Gale author of Save of the Game.

Hi Avon, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself, your background, and your current book.

Do you buy a book because of the cover, the blurb, or something else?

Any and all of those! Blurbs usually get me since I’m a word person, but I love a good, intriguing cover. Usually though I read the blurb, and I get a lot of recommendations from friends. I love the “recommendations” features on Amazon and GoodReads, and I also love those user-created lists on GoodReads. 

What does ‘romance’ mean to you?

I generally say that what I find romantic is when two people are better together than they are apart. I’m not really a sentimental person, and my characters don’t tend to be, either. Romance to me is about how people treat each other and respect their partner(s) as individuals and equals, no matter what other dynamics are at play in the relationship. I consider myself a character-driven writer and the thing I love about romance is writing people’s relationships – not only with each other, but family and friends, too. It’s why I tend to have a lot of secondary characters in my books. I also find confidence and security in one’s relationship to be romantic, which is why my characters often express that they are attracted to other people to their partners, even if it’s just in fantasy and they don’t do anything about it (or even if they do!) Celebrating all kinds of sexuality is a big thing for me as a writer. 

What are your current projects?

Currently I’m editing the draft of the fourth Scoring Chances novel, getting it ready for submission to Dreamspinner. I’m also working on two novellas, one about a bourbon distillery in a small Kentucky town and one about old time hockey players in the 30’s. Novel-wise, I have a book about rock singers and a fantasy novel to finish up. I have a thousand WIPs, it’s really ridiculous. 

What is the most difficult part of writing for you?

Editing that first complete draft, ugh! I’m a very fast writer but a sloooooow editor. I can complete a book in half the time it takes me to edit it into something manageable. I don’t generally outline unless I get lost somewhere in the 40K mark (okay, let me rephrase that – I generally don’t outline UNTIL I get lose somewhere in the 40K mark :D ) so a lot of my character development happens as I’m writing. It makes for a wordy manuscript with a TON of irrelevant background information that I have to cut out. It means I know my characters well, but it often bogs the story down. One of my goals as a writer is to get better at avoiding the “info dump” and work on my incorporating backstory into the main story. 

Tell us something about yourself that would surprise people.

People are sometimes surprised to find out that I went to graduate school for ancient history. I studied military colonization of the Spartan military. It’s really boring. But I love Spartan history and Bronze Age Greece stuff, and all my schooling is in classics, art history and history. Yet I write contemporary romance about hockey players and am a hair stylist at my day job! Academia wasn’t for me, but I will never regret the chance to study what I did for seven years, even if wild horses – centaurs even – couldn’t drag me back to graduate school. 

His phone beeped, alerting him that he had a new text message. It was from Ethan Kennedy, the defenseman the Storm had acquired before the trade deadline last spring. The rowdy Kennedy, who had a heavy New York accent and was a huge fan of the New York Rangers—a team Riley hated, by virtue of being a New Jersey Devils fan—had bunked with him for a few weeks during the finals. He’d gone back to New York after the Storm lost in the playoffs. Riley hadn’t been sure if he was coming back or not, but the text message indicated he’d just gotten back to town, and would Riley mind picking him up from the airport?

And oh, he got a cheaper rate by flying into Tampa, which was three hours away. Was that a problem? And one last thing. Riley didn’t need a roommate by any chance. Did he?

Riley looked around his apartment, which was nice and clean and quiet. Just like it always was, except for those few weeks last spring when Ethan was there. He was loud and messy and always in Riley’s space, left half-full cans of Pepsi everywhere, drank whiskeys with dubious-sounding names, and smoked like a chimney.

be there in 3 hrs, Riley texted and grabbed a few boxes of coconut water out of his fridge. The idea of coming home alone after games reminded him of those car rides in Wyoming, and he was getting tired of the silence.

Avon Gale was once the mayor on Foursquare of Jazzercise and Lollicup, which should tell you all you need to know about her as a person. She likes road trips, rock concerts, drinking Kentucky bourbon and yelling at hockey. She’s a displaced southerner living in a liberal midwestern college town, and when she’s not writing you can find her at the salon, making her clients look and feel fabulous. She never gets tired of people and their stories -- either real or the ones she makes up in her head.

Author Interview, Excerpt & Giveaway: State Of Destruction, Collapse #7 by Summer Lane

The destruction of California is at hand.

Cassidy Hart and Chris Young have survived a dangerous mission into the heart of Sky City, a secret Omega base hidden deep in the mountains, but their vengeance has come with a price. The dark, ominous cloud of nuclear war threatens to destroy everything they love, and they are forced to make one final stand against Omega’s western invasion force.

San Francisco.
Cassidy and her friends retreat to Alcatraz Island, regrouping with their lethal strike team, the Angels of Death. Their mission: infiltrate the most important Omega base on the west coast, and assassinate everyone they find there, including a new and dangerous enemy, the ruthless Omega leader Veronica Klaus.

The clock is ticking.
Ashes rain from the sky. Cassidy Hart must make a choice.
What is more important? Victory, love or revenge?

Omega is the enemy’s name.
Survival of the fittest is their game.

Cassidy Hart will not stop until she has saved California…but will she be too late?
Book #7 of the Bestselling Collapse Series by Summer Lane

Where Collapse is Headed: And What Happens After! 

This is your seventh installment in the Collapse Series! When is the series ending? 

The Collapse Series will end at the tenth installment, but that does not mean that the characters are going away forever. The Collapse Series does exactly what it’s name suggests: it follows the collapse of society and civilization. After I’m done with that, I can move to what happens after. 

When is Book 8 releasing? 

Summer 2016. The next book will take Cassidy somewhere she has never been before – far away, to a place full of surprises. I can’t say too much, because I don’t want to spoil State of Destruction! Let’s just say it will be pretty cold where she’s going. 

Any other books? 

I announced that I’m working on releasing another series this year, The Bravo Saga. This series follows the adventures of the fierce and loyal Bravo, the German Shepherd companion of Elle Costas in the Zero Trilogy. He’s one of the most popular characters – if not THE most popular – that I have ever created for readers, so I’m excited to share his story next. 

How do you write so many books a year? 

Hmm. I’m not really sure. I’ve been so incredibly busy for three years – I haven’t stopped to think or breathe. It’s definitely a positive thing, but I will probably start to roll back to 2-3 book releases a year after the Collapse Series has finished. Just so I can have a little downtime between books. It’s important to rest your brain when you’ve been creating non-stop for such a long period of time.

We move through the prison in a silent, determined parade. As we walk, we draw the attention of the soldiers staying in the cells. A few of them recognize Chris, but mostly I hear murmurs about me. 

“…That’s Cassidy Hart…” 

“…she’s a sniper in the militias…” 

“…I heard she’s killed a thousand men…” 

“…No, not a thousand. Maybe a hundred—”

“Who could miss her? Look at that red hair.” 

They whisper. I hear snatches of their comments. Some of them call me Commander, some of them call me Senator, and some of them call me Shooter. It is strange. Everyone knows me. They know my name, they know what I’ve done, where I’ve fought, and what I’m good at. 

I am known for killing. 

Do I regret my reputation? I search my mind, and there is a twinge of guilt there…but it is gone in a flash. 

No. I do not regret it. I regret nothing. 

I am a fighter, and I will not apologize for defending what I love.

Summer Lane is the #1 Bestselling Author of The Collapse Series and the compelling tie-in novella books of The Zero Trilogy, as well as the upcoming Bravo Saga (releasing Spring 2016). She is also the author of Collapse: The Illustrated Guide, a #1 bestselling graphic companion to her phenomenal original series.

She is the owner of WB Publishing and Writing Belle, an online magazine. Summer is also an accomplished journalist and creative writing teacher. 

Summer lives in the Central Valley of California, where she spends her days writing, teaching, and writing some more. When she is not writing, she enjoys leisurely visits with friends at coffee shops, movie dates, reading and spending the day at the beach or mountains.