Release Day! #ROAR by @CoraCarmack is finally here!

 

 

From New York Times bestselling author Cora Carmack comes her debut young adult fantasy, ROAR! Now available, ROAR takes readers on an adventure filled with charismatic characters in an enthralling world sure to keep them turning the pages. Grab your copy today!

 

 

About ROAR (Stormheart #1):

New York Times bestselling author Cora Carmack’s young adult debut: Roar.

In a land ruled and shaped by violent magical storms, power lies with those who control them.

Aurora Pavan comes from one of the oldest Stormling families in existence. Long ago, the ungifted pledged fealty and service to her family in exchange for safe haven, and a kingdom was carved out from the wildlands and sustained by magic capable of repelling the world’s deadliest foes. As the sole heir of Pavan, Aurora’s been groomed to be the perfect queen. She’s intelligent and brave and honorable. But she’s yet to show any trace of the magic she’ll need to protect her people.

To keep her secret and save her crown, Aurora’s mother arranges for her to marry a dark and brooding Stormling prince from another kingdom. At first, the prince seems like the perfect solution to all her problems. He’ll guarantee her spot as the next queen and be the champion her people need to remain safe. But the more secrets Aurora uncovers about him, the more a future with him frightens her. When she dons a disguise and sneaks out of the palace one night to spy on him, she stumbles upon a black market dealing in the very thing she lacks—storm magic. And the people selling it? They’re not Stormlings. They’re storm hunters.

Legend says that her ancestors first gained their magic by facing a storm and stealing part of its essence. And when a handsome young storm hunter reveals he was born without magic, but possesses it now, Aurora realizes there’s a third option for her future besides ruin or marriage.
She might not have magic now, but she can steal it if she’s brave enough.

Challenge a tempest. Survive it. And you become its master.

 

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | Book Depository

 

Add to your Goodreads

 

 

 

 

EXCERPT:

“This life is not glamorous,” Duke told her. “We travel constantly. We sleep on the ground most nights. When we’re not in danger from storms, we’re in danger in cities where we are considered criminals. This life is not for the faint of heart.”

“There are things I do not know, things I will have to learn. But I am capable. I am familiar with sacrifice. I know what it is to make hard choices.”

“Tell me you’re not considering this,” Locke said to Duke.

The old man was silent for a long moment, both Locke and Roar looking to him for support. Duke rubbed at his mustache, a habit of his when he was thinking deeply. “Let’s think about this, Locke. She’s smart. And determined.”

“She’s a child.”

Roar’s shoulders hunched in Locke’s peripheral vision, and he swallowed back the guilt. He could apologize later. For now, it was imperative that he won this argument.

You were a child when I brought you into the fold,” Duke said. “She’s a young woman with a good head on her shoulders. And if this is what she wants, I’m inclined to at least hear her out.”

Just like that, Roar’s shoulders straightened, and Locke turned to watch a devastating smile bloom across her mouth. His weakness when it came to her only made him more cross.

“What skills do you have?” he snapped at Roar.

“Skills?”

“Yes, skills. What can you do? Or do you just plan to tag along for the ride?”

A flush spread over her cheeks, and her voice was tentative when she answered, “I’m good on a horse. Very good.”

Where in the world would she have learned to ride? He quickly hardened his expression. “Horses are fine for travel, but they don’t do well in storms. They, unlike you, have good survival instincts.”

As soon as the words were out of his mouth, Locke could have sworn he felt an updraft—the first sign that bad weather could occur—and he knew that this time he had pushed too far.

Roar marched toward him, spearing a finger into his chest and said, “I can read and write. I can speak Taraanese, Finlaghi, and Odilarian. I can read maps. I know enough about grassland vegetation and wildlife to survive without a market to buy food and drink. I’m good with knives and a bow. I learn quickly, and I’m not afraid of hard work. And I’ve spent my entire life reading as much about storms as I could get my hands on.” For a moment, her voice cracked under the weight of her anger, but she took a huffing breath and continued: “I’m good with numbers. It’s been a while, but I think I can probably still draw the constellations from memory, which should make me decent at navigation. I can—“

“Enough.” Locke’s voice came out in a deep rasp. He captured her long, delicate finger in his fist before she could continue poking him. He felt short of breath at the sight of her—livid and lovely. “Enough.”

The old Locke might have kept arguing, and Roar would have met him toe-to-toe. But if becoming a storm hunter had taught him anything, it was that fighting head-on wasn’t always the way to win. Sometimes strategy was required. He met Duke’s eyes over her shoulder, and if he had thought Roar looked smug before, she had nothing on his mentor. The man raised his eyebrows in a challenge and asked, “You?”

He hated the idea of bringing someone into this dangerous life, but if it was going to happen regardless, he sure as hell wouldn’t hand her safety over to anyone else, not even Ransom. And at the very least, it would give him the opportunity to change her mind. He gritted his teeth and nodded his acceptance.

 

 

 


 

 

 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

 

About Cora Carmack:

Cora Carmack is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. Since she was a teenager, her favorite genre to read has been fantasy, and now she’s thrilled to bring her usual compelling characters and swoon-worthy romance into worlds of magic and intrigue with her debut YA fantasy, Roar. Her previous adult romance titles include the Losing It, Rusk University, and Muse series. Her books have been translated into more than a dozen languages around the world. Cora splits her time between Austin, TX and New York City, and on any given day you might find her typing away at her computer, flying to various cities around the world, or just watching Netflix with her kitty Katniss. But she can always be found on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and her website www.coracarmack.com.

 

 

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Goodreads

 

 

 

 

Whereafter by Terri Bruce (Review, Interview AND Giveaway)

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000446_00074]

WELCOME TO MY TOUR STOP FOR WHEREAFTER BY TERRI BRUCE! PLEASE READ THE ENTIRE POST TO FIND BOOK INFO AND BUY LINKS, MY REVIEW, AN INTERVIEW WITH TERRI, AND A GIVEAWAY! AWESOME!!!

Whereafter

Afterlife

Book 3

Terri Bruce

 

Genre: Contemporary fantasy/paranormal

Publisher: Mictlan Press

Date of Publication: March 15, 2016

ISBN: 9780991303649

Number of pages: 345
Word Count: 100,000

Formats available:
Paperback and all ebook formats

Cover Artist: Shelby Robinson – artwork
Jennifer Stolzer – layout and design

Book Description:

How Far Would You Go To Get Your Life Back?

Stuck in the afterlife on an island encircled by fire and hunted by shadows bent on trapping them there forever, Irene and Andras struggle to hold onto the last vestiges of their physical selves, without which they can never return to the land of the living. But it’s not just external forces they’ll have to fight as the pair grow to realize they have different goals. Irene still clings to the hope that she can somehow return to her old life—the one she had before she died—while Andras would be only too glad to embrace oblivion.

Meanwhile, Jonah desperately searches for a way to cross over to the other side, even if doing so means his death. His crossing over, however, is the one thing that could destroy Irene’s chances of returning home.

Too many obstacles, too many people to save, and the thing Irene most desperately wants—to return to her old life—seems farther away than ever. Only one thing is clear: moving on will require making a terrible sacrifice.

Excerpt:

Andras grunted, the sound filled with suspicion. Irene bent down to tie her shoelace, as much to avoid eye contact as anything. When she straightened up, something in the distance caught her eye, shimmering like a mirage. She squinted, not sure she was really seeing what she thought she saw.
“You know, now might be a good time for you to tell me what it was like to live in a castle,” she said.
Andras shook his head, sadly, as if Irene had disappointed him. “You cling too much to the past. Forget the trappings of life. Free your mind from these longings, and so, free your soul. Only then will we be able to escape these shackles and enter Heaven to rest at the side of God.”
Why did he always have to argue about everything? “For God’s sake,” she said, exasperated, “just answer the question!”
“Wherefore?”
Irene pointed to the hulking structure in the distance. “Because,” she said as Andras whirled around to see what she was pointing at, “correct me if I’m wrong, but that looks like a castle.”
“Wow!” Irene said, her eyes roving over the dark, crenellated structure hulking in the far distance. It gleamed dully, the color of burnt blood in a fading afternoon sun. “What the hell do you think that is?”
Andras grunted. “As you said—Hell.”
Irene frowned at him, but her lips quirked in amusement. “Why do you have to be so negative? It could just as easily be Heaven. God is supposed to live in a palace, right—the whole ‘my father’s house has many rooms’ thing? A castle is just a type of palace.”
Andras gave her a dry look. “Does that look like Heaven?”
Irene was on the verge of agreeing that the castle did not in any way look how she imagined Heaven when it shimmered, as if the fading sunlight had been redirected by mirrors. Light rippled across the castle’s surface and the dull, dark, burnt-blood color transformed into gleaming, bright, silver-white. Crisp white pennants flapped from the corners as if whipped by wind. Irene thought she could hear them snapping crisply.
Irene looked at Andras, and he looked at her. His expression made it clear that he had seen the same transformation she had. It was as if the building was trying to trick them into coming closer.

What I thought:

I loved the whole Afterlife series. It was exciting and so much fun to read.

I don’t know if I could pick a favorite book out of the series(so far) but, IF I DID, it would be this one.

In this book, the third in the series, we find Irene still stuck in the afterlife, which is actually more of a purgatory. She and Andras continue to search for a way to escape and on the other side, Jonah is trying to help as well. But if he crosses over it could be dangerous for everyone involved.

I got kind of an Alice in Wonderland vibe with Irene stuck in the afterlife. I think it was the obstacles and being stuck in one place, trying to get to another, and Irene being so confused.

I like how the book kind of goes back and forth and you get Irene and Jonah’s point of view. I LOVE multiple POV books.

Another thing that I LOVED about this book was the fact that one of the characters deals with a mental illness. That is happening a lot lately in books, and being an anxiety/OCD sufferer, its so awesome to see because its brings so much awareness.

The writing in this, as well as the whole series, was amazing. But you could really tell a difference in the growth of the writing from Book 1 to Book 3. And speaking of growth, the character growth in this book, and again, the whole series was really great.

I also really liked how this ended. Irene has finally made her decision. And now, I look forward to the rest of the series to see what happens next!

I give Whereafter 4.5 stars.

About the Author:

Terri Bruce has been making up adventure stories for as long as she can remember and 6450132won her first writing award when she was twelve. Like Anne Shirley, she prefers to make people cry rather than laugh, but is happy if she can do either. She produces fantasy and adventure stories from a haunted house in New England where she lives with her husband and three cats. She is the author of the Afterlife Series, which includes Hereafter
(Afterlife #1) and Thereafter (Afterlife #2) and several short stories including “Welcome to OASIS” (“Dear Robot” anthology, Kelly Jacobson publisher) and “The Well” (“Scratching the Surface” anthology, Third Flatiron Press).

Website/Blog

Goodreads

Facebook

Twitter

INTERVIEW WITH TERRI:

Writing/Book Questions:
Thank you so much for letting me stop by today to talk about my latest book, Whereafter! I’m really excited to be here and very excited to finally be able to release Whereafter—the long awaited third book in the series.

(1) How would you describe your writing process?
Controlled chaos? But without the control

(2) Do you have any strange writing habits?
I don’t think this count as strange because a lot of writers do them, but I tend to write a lot while I sleep. I imagine a scene or storyline that I might be having trouble with as I’m falling asleep—imagining it out almost like a movie. If I do that, then usually, when I wake up, I have the answer to whatever is wrong or stumping me. Often that answer comes to me in the shower, so I spend a lot of time running through the house, dripping wet, looking for paper to jot notes down on before I forget them! 

(3) What authors inspired you to write (if any)?
I’ve always written, ever since I was a kid, so I wasn’t influenced to write by any authors. But, certainly, there have been many books that have influenced my life: T.H. White’s “The Once and Future King,” was one of the most impactful books I have ever read. I read it once a year around my birthday just to remind myself that the struggle to be noble and good is worth it. Joseph Heller’s “Catch-22” influenced my social-political views, “The Little Prince” influenced my life philosophy, and Marianne Williamson’s “A Return to Love” has helped guide me in being my attempts to be the best version of myself.

(4) How do you choose character names?
Very painfully. I’m terrible at naming things (and book titles! I’m terrible at book titles!). Actually, the painful part is a fib. My characters usually tell me their names, but I also try to be intentional in picking a wide variety of names, especially uncommon names or names not common to me/where I live. So sometimes I spend a lot of time browsing baby name sites, trying to find different sounding names or names that are more popular in other countries or other parts of the world.

(5) Favorite Book(s):

Too many to name! Pride and Prejudice, almost everything by Charles Dickens, The Three Musketeers, Ivanhoe, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Chronicles of Prydain (Gurgi!), His Dark Materials series, Jan Karon’s “At Home in Mitford” series, anything by Terry Pratchett… the list goes on and on!

(6) Favorite Author(s):

Terry Pratchett for sure! Lloyd Alexander, Charles Dickens, Jane Austen… more contemporary I live Julia Quinn and Lisa Kleypas (yes, I’m a romance novel junkie!) and I’ve just discovered Scott Lynch (Gentleman Bastards series).

(7) What book do you wish that you had written?

Any book that makes me cry – Mary Doria Russell’s “The Sparrow,” Aryn Kyle’s “The God of Animals,” Phillip Pullman’s, “His Dark Materials” books, etc. I always feel like I struggle writing emotionally sad scenes and I envy authors with that talent.

(8) If you could pick one other job, besides writing books and what you currently do besides writing books, what would that be?

Something to do with animals—but not a veterinarian. Some kind of animal trainer maybe or work at a zoo or a shelter.

(9) What do you have going on right now? What can we expect next from you?

Well… I have a new book out! Whereafter, the latest book in my Afterlife series, released on March 15th! Whereafter (Afterlife #3) is the third book (of six) in the series. The series tells the story of Irene Dunphy, a thirty-six year old party girl, who dies and is stuck on earth as a ghost. She eventually figures out how to cross over to the other side, and she has to learn how to navigate the afterlife and figure out how to spend eternity.

As for what’s coming up next, well, as always, I have a bunch of things in the works. There is, of course, the next book in the Afterlife series (Whenafter), which I’m working on; I’m also working on editing a “Blade Runner meets The Usual Suspects” science noir story that I’ll be shopping to publishers soon, and I’m working on a science fiction novel that started out as a space-opera “sci-fi western” and is morphing into a much more sobering, almost hard sci-fi mortality tale about a group of space miners trying to survive on an abandoned mining outpost in deep space.

(10) Do you listen to music when you write? If so, tell me 3-5 songs on your playlist.

I definitely listen to music when I write—fun fact about me: I have two parts of my brain. They might be the traditional left and right parts, but one part is more analytical and is in charge of reading and writing skills. The other part is in charge of ideas and creativity. When I’m doing left brain stuff (like writing), if I don’t give the right side something to do, it starts day dreaming and  sucks the left part into the day dreaming and distracts me. So I listen to music when I write, read, cook or bake (when I need to follow a recipe), or whenever I need to study or do something that requires intense concentration. I’ve always been that way.

For the Afterlife series, I listen to a lot of dark and heavy stuff: a lot of Florence and the Machine and Garbage (Stupid Girl is Irene’s theme song; also, “The Trick is to Keep Breathing” for Jonah) and Lane Del Rey (Dark Paradise, in particular).

(11) Do you or have you incorporate(d) real life experiences into your books?
There’s so much real life stuff in my books! Irene’s recollection of her death by drowning is actually my memory of the experience. I nearly drowned when I was six and I’ve never forgotten it. Jonah depression is taken from my own experiences and my own struggles as a teenager of feeling like a misfit and being a lonely, nerdy outsider. In Whereafter, Jonah has a very emotional scene where he tries to describe why he’s suicidal and why he’s so desperate to find Irene, who he’s kind of pinned all his hopes of not being so lonely on, and all of that is taken from my own feelings and memories from that age.

In addition, many of my characters are drawn from actual history. All of Andras’s background and history is taken from historical research. Even though he is a fictional character, his family is real, the religious order he belonged to is real, the holding of Ucles is real, and the history of the battle of Alarcos in 1195 is all real. In Book #2 (Thereafter), Ian’s history and background are all real, though he himself is fiction. The Chinese philosopher Irene and Ian meet was a real person. There are actually a lot of hidden, real life people in the series. I do a lot of research and try to find real life people that match the characters I need/want for particular scenes. And in those cases where I don’t use a real person, I invent a person but I make all of their life circumstances as realistic as possible—such as Amy in Hereafter. She is not a real person, but her profession, where she lived (a boarding house in Boston’s South End), the way she dressed, the way she speaks, her social and political views, her slang/vocabulary, and even the names of streets she references are all historically accurate for the time period in which she would have lived. LOL—sometimes I feel like my Afterlife series is historical fiction masquerading as fantasy.

Crazy Questions:
(1) Have you ever been in a bar fight?

LOL—no; I don’t drink so I don’t tend to go to bars. But been in lots of “near scuffles” in my life.
(2) What is your biggest fear?

Being a coward

(3) What do you want written on your tombstone?

She always tried her best.

(4) Do you have any secret talents?

Alas, no. I can’t even whistle and I can only blink my left eye but not my right 😦
(5) What is one place you have never been, but would love to go?

I only get one?! That’s not fair! I want to go to China and India, in particular, but also Egypt and Scotland are high on the list.
(6) If you were a superhero, what would your name be? And your power?

I really want the power to set stuff on fire. Or something like Force Choke… which I suspect means I would not, in fact, be a superhero, but, instead, be a super villain.
(7) If you were an animal, what animal would you be?

I ‘m torn, because I love cats and would love to be one, but otters always look like they are having fun. Seriously, have you ever seen a sad looking otter?
(8) What is one thing you would like to accomplish before you die?

I’d like an opportunity to be courageous.
(9) If you could have an accent from anywhere in the world, what accent would you choose?

Oooh, tough one, because I LOVE accents! Indian, English, Irish, Italian, or French would be my top favorites.
(10) Do you have any tattoos? How many?

I wish! But, alas, I do not because I am petrified of needles. I got stung by an entire nest of yellow jackets as a kid and I have panic attacks around anything resembling a bee sting—having blood drawn at the doctor’s office, getting an I.V. put in, Novocaine shots at the dentist’s office, shots at the doctor’s office, tattoos, acupuncture… you name it. If it involves a needle, I freak out.
(11) Do you have any scars? From what? 

I’ve got a very awesome one on my knee from patella tendon repair surgery a few years ago. I’ve got a small one on one temple from jumping on the bed as a kid and falling and cracking open my head on the bed post.
(12) What is your favorite food and drink?

I love to eat, so there’s no way I can pick just one thing in either category!

 

I want to thank you once again for letting me stop by to chat about Whereafter. For those that love afterlife mythology or want to learn more about the Afterlife series, during the month of April, I will be participating in the “A to Z Blogging Challenge,” and every day, I will be posting a video blog (at http://www.terribruce.net) in which I reveal all of the hidden references to afterlife mythology and “Easter Eggs” in the series. I encourage everyone to stop by each day and check out the videos! You can also sign up for my newsletter to stay up to date with all my latest news. In addition, I love interacting with readers, so please feel free to email me or connect with me on Twitter.

Tour giveaway

2 $25 Amazon Gift Cards

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Whereafter Banner 851 x 315.png

The Rampart Guards by Wendy Terrien

RampartGuardsVBTBadge (1).png

 

AUTHOR DEBUTS EXCITING URBAN FANTASY

ADVENTURE THE RAMPART GUARDS

Middle grade and young adult series inspired by an episode of “Bones.”

Many legendary creatures are thought to exist across all continents; Bigfoot, The Loch Ness Monster, Centaurs. But, it was the chupacabra in an episode of hit television series​Bones that inspired debut author Wendy Terrien to write​ The Rampart Guards​ (February 26, 2016).

In the first installment of the urban fantasy series,Jason Lex’smom disappears,and his family moves to a small town where he has no fun, no friends and no life. When he’s chased by weird flying creatures that only he can see, Jason thinks he’s really losing it. Stunned to learn that cryptids like Skyfish, Kappa and the Mongolian Death Worm aren’t just stories on the Internet, Jason also learns that someone – or some ​thing- is trying to destroy the invisible shield that keeps these creatures hidden and protects the human race from their threatening force. Jason is faced with a difficult decision in the fight to save those he loves: who lives, and who dies?

The series will continue with three more books. Terrien plans to simultaneously release book two in two parts-telling different stories, but told concurrently-and will conclude the trilogy with the final chapter told from the point of view of two of her main characters.

Terrien’s fun-filled adventure series is enchanting, and the author hopes by diving more into the topic of cryptids, her middle grade and young adult readers will also be inspired to do more research themselves on the existence of such fantastic creatures.

Wendy Terrien

Wendy Terrien has been writing stories since she was in grade school. Her debut novel ​The Rampart Guards (February 26,2016) is the first in her intriguing urban fantasy series. Inspired by an episode of ​Bones that suspected a killer to be a fabled chupacabra, Wendy was fascinated and     dove into research about cryptozoology – the study of animals that may or may not exist, or cryptids. Pouring over stories, videos and photographs of creatures others had seen all over the world, Wendy developed her own story to share with middle grade, young adult and grown-up readers.

Raised in Salt Lake City, Wendy graduated from the University of Utah and soon              transplanted to Colorado where she completed her MBA at the University of Denver.             Having applied her marketing expertise to the financial and network security           industries, it wasn’t until a career coach stepped in that she fully immersed herself in her passion for writing. Wendy began attending writers conferences, workshops and retreats.

She regularly participates in two critique groups and ​is the Secretary of ​Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers ​and a member of ​Pikes Peak Writers ​and the ​Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators​. ​In 2014, she was a finalist in the ​San Francisco Writer’s Contest and in March, will release a novella in the anthology Tick Tock: Seven Tales of Time​.

Wendy lives in Colorado with her husband Kevin and their three dogs: Maggie, Shea              and Boon. All three of her dogs are rescues and Wendy is passionate about promoting shelter adoptions. If you’re ever in Colorado, you may even be able to spot her by her “Adopt a Shelter Pet” license plates.

RampartGuards_CVR_MEDThe Rampart Guards

Hardcover

978-0-9969031-0-3

$24.99

Paperback

978-0-9969031-2-7

$12.99

Ebook

978-0-9969031-1-0

$5.99

Urban Fantasy, Young Adult, Middle Grade

Camashea Press

February 26, 2016

Pages: 268

After his mom disappears, Jason Lex and his family move to a small town where he has no friends, no fun, no life. Things get worse when he’s chased by weird flying creatures that only he can see—Jason thinks he’s losing it.

But when Jason discovers new information about his family, he’s stunned to learn that creatures like Skyfish, Kappa, and the Mongolian Death Worm aren’t just stories on the Internet—they’re real and they live unseen alongside the human race. Many of these creatures naturally emit energy capable of incinerating humans. An invisible shield           keeps these creatures hidden and protects the human race from their threatening force, but someone, or some​thing​, is trying to destroy it.

Unsure who he can trust, Jason is drawn into the fight to save the people closest to                 him, and he finds help in surprising places. Confronted with loss, uncertainty, and a devastating betrayal, Jason must make a gut-wrenching decision:

Who lives, and who dies.

 

Q&A with Wendy Terrien

Your story really appeals to readers of all ages.Can  you tell me the story behind the idea for ​The Rampart Guards?

I was watching an episode of the televisionshow Bones,and the perceived killer was a chupacabra. I thought, “What is a chupacabra?” Then the main character in the show mentioned cryptozoology, and I was locked in. The whole thing fascinated me. I’d heard of Bigfoot and the Loch Ness monster,of course, but soon discovered there are many more supposed creatures out there, known as cryptids, and that the study of creatures that may or may not exist is known as cryptozoology. My imagination really zipped along after that, and one “what if” question after another popped into my head.

What do you think will surprise readers most about ​The Rampart Guards?

Every cryptid that appears in the book actually exists! At least on the Internet. There are numerous sites that follow and discuss the likelihood that certain creatures exist, and many share photos, videos, historical stories, etc. So if a reader is intrigued by any or all of the cryptids in ​The Rampart Guards​, they can Google that cryptid and then make the decision for themselves if that particular creature does or does not exist.

What’s your goal when you’re writing for your readers?

I hope my book lights up their imagination! I want to write stories that are fun to read, that maybe take the reader out of their real world for a while and entertain them, maybe even delight them. I hope they feel the same way about the story as I do regarding the cryptids–who says they don’t really exist? Maybe there really is a shield. Maybe there​ are Skyfish zooming around us on a regular basis….I mean, there are people that certainly believe that they do. It’s so much fun to let your imagination run free for a bit and  see where it takes you – it’s energizing!

What do you find most rewarding in your day-to-day life?

I love using my optimism for good. When I hear any negative self-talk from friends, I find the silver lining and spin that comment around on its ears. In fact, it’s not just a silver lining. I simply remind them of the truth about how fantastic they really are, and that’s never hard to do. So often, we talk ourselves down and there’s no goodreasonfor that. Focus on the positive! It’s highly likely you have a ton more good stuff going on than bad. I also ​love the dogs we share our life with: Maggie, Shea, and Boon. They’re all rescues. Maggie, we found as a puppy in the middle-of-nowhere Wyoming. She was skin and bones, and she had scabs down her side, probably from being thrown out of a moving car. We nursed her through that and parvo, and today, she’s our black beauty. Shea came to us through the Boulder Humane Society after she’d been transferred from Kansas. Her mom was a stray and was going to be euthanized until they saw how far along she was in her pregnancy. A kind soul fostered her and the puppies until they could all be transferred to Colorado where they had a better chance at adoption. And I’m happy to say they all found homes. Shea is our mighty dog. And Boon is a sweetheart we adopted from a shelter in Arizona where my mom was living at the time. He’d been there nearly a year, likely because he looks like he may have some pitbull in him. He’s as sweet as sweet can be, though and we’re lucky to have him. Boon’s personality and the misinformation about the pitbull breed inspired me to make Finn—a very cool canine character in ​The Rampart Guards ​— a pit bull.

How has your journey into writing helped you grow as an author?

I’d considered myself to be a good writer and thought I was well prepared to write a novel, but I was so wrong. I had tons to learn and it was fantastic. My brain lit up like a fireworks finale. I could not get enough. That has since led to meeting incredible people and               establishing myself as a member of a writing tribe here in Colorado where I feel really comfortable, really at home.

What do you find most fascinating about your writing process?

How the characters and the story come to life. Even though I have an outline(loose though it is), they decide where the story isn actually going. I’m surprised from one chapter to the next.

How has your education, profession or background helped you in your writing career?

Just about every job I’ve had demanded good writing skills, and as such I’ve been able to continuously improve upon my basic skills. And the marketing aspects of my different jobs have kept me thinking creatively.I also love the business training I’ve had, because I’m able to confidently wear two hats – both creative and business. Writing is not just about writing. Writers are also a small business and it’s so important to understand that. If you’re serious about having a career as an author, you must invest in your business from a time and “sweat equity” perspective, as well as from a monetary one. And you work hard. That’s true whether you’re traditionally or independently published.

Who has influenced you most in becoming an author?

This is a tough question, because I don’t think any one person influenced me to become a writer. I’ve always loved writing stories, and friends and family have often told me I should write more, but I never considered pursuing it “for real” until I was laid off a few years ago. I wasn’t excited about returning to a job similar to what I’d already had, and after a couple months of my less-than-enthusiastic approach to my job search, my career coach sussed out my writing bug. And that bug was buried deep—even I was surprised when the words “I want to write” cameout of my mouth. After that, I put it out into the world and told my family and friends that I wanted to do this, and not one person told me I was crazy. At least not to my face. I immersed myself into the writing and publishing world, and here I am with one novel and a novella complete, and more stories in the works. It gives me a huge thrill!

A bit premature, since your debut book will release in February, but I know authors are always thinking ahead! What is your next project?

You’re right! I am planning ahead. I have a novella being published in an anthology along with six other writers in March 2016.The theme is time, and the title is ​Tick Tock: Seven Tales of Time​. I’ve already read some of the other stories to be included and it’s great stuff. I’m really happy to be part of this project. As for my series, I want to write two separate novels as “book two.” Simultaneous stories-one following Jason and his adventure with the League of Governors, and the other following Sadie’s story back home in Salton. The final chapter in both books brings them back together in Salton. It will probably kill me to get them both written and released together and in a timely fashion, but I’m really excited about the idea.

What I thought:

The Rampart Guards was an awesome book! I was actually not familiar with cryptozoology at all. This was my first time hearing about it. One of the things I actually love about this book is the backstory of the book. The idea came from an episode of a tv show that the author watched. I just thought that was so cool.

Wendy Terrien is, without a doubt, a talented writer. The writing, storyline, character development, all were impeccable.

And much to my delight, another fresh idea in the paranormal genre. I’ve definitely been on a paranormal kick lately and reading new ideas makes it even better.

Jason, the main character was a true protagonist and a relatable character.

I definitely enjoyed this, even though its targeted more for middle grade/young adult. I look forward to reading more from Wendy Terrien.

I give The Rampart Guards four stars.

Also thank you to Samantha Lien at Roger Charlie and the author, Wendy Terrien for providing me with a review copy of The Rampart Guards.

Immortal Kiss by Laura Daleo

25342628

About the Book:

Centuries ago ten powerful vampire gods first walked the earth; their blood thirst knew no boundaries. The destruction of mankind was inevitable. Recognizing their weakness, they selected twelve wise human beings to transform with their godly blood. These twelve, known as The Old Ones and The Council, govern The Ten. A blood lottery appeasing The Ten’s hunger was set forth into the human world and passed down every fifth generation, continuing into the present day.
All of Beth Ryan’s life a mysterious mist watched over her, a mist she believed to be a vampire. On a cold winter night, she comes face to face with Philippe Delon, a 700 year old vampire with a human soul. Beth is certain Philippe is the vampire behind the mist. She is drawn to him, accepting his immortality without question or fear.
Beth and Philippe cannot deny their love for each other, nor do they try to fight it. Within days of their encounter, Beth accepts Philippe’s invitation to move into his mansion. The mansion unlocks the door to the vampire world and exposes secrets from Beth’s past. Within its walls, she learns the true identity of the mist, her link to the blood lottery, and betrayal of her loved ones. Surrounded by lies, Beth stands before The Council begging for resolution.

About the Author:

“I was born and raised in Sunny San Diego, California. A creative writing class in junior high sparked my desire to tell stores. I’ve been a hostess, bookkeeper, accountant, manager, and animal advocate, but writing anything paranormal has always been my passion. Throughout my professional career, I squeezed in writing whenever I could. I camped out late at night in front of my computer, with my five basset hounds, Edie, Lucy, Stuart, Morgan, and Dexter, my toughest critics asleep at my feet. Now I’m living out my dream as an author.”

What I thought:

Okay. I am a little skeptical about vampire books because I just got burned out on them. And sometimes they just get repetitive. I mean you can only spin a vampire story so many ways and most of that has covered.

And I will admit, I was a little hesitant when I started. I mean “the mist”? I thought “Oh wow, this is going to be hard for me to get into.

WRONG.

Fortunately, the book picked up and got more interesting. A lot more interesting. And the author definitely did a good job of originality with the vampire concept.

There were a few things I didn’t care for much in the book, but they weren’t bad enough to keep me from enjoying the book.

For example, the instalove between Phillipe and Beth. And Beth and Amon. Yes. There’s a love triangle (which I actually love). And then Beth came across as annoying some of the time.

But the things I liked outweighed the things I didn’t like. While I didn’t care too much for the instalove, I liked the concept and the love triangle. And there was so much deception! I also thought the writing was really good. The vampires were a bit much at times, but take into consideration they are hundreds of years old. I liked the concept of Beth being half-vampire and half-human, and how she was half-vampire was intriguing. There was a lot of intensity,especially towards the end. I am really glad theres going to be a sequel because I’m looking forward to it.

I give this book 4 stars!

And now for a little fun, I interviewed (via email) the author Laura Daleo. 

Writing/Book Questions:

(1) How would you describe your writing process? I write a few chapters, stop, re-read them, and then make my edits.

(2) Do you have any strange writing habits? I have to have a Starbucks Iced Coffee when I write.

(3) What authors inspired you to write (if any)? Anne Rice, Stephen King, Peter Straub, and Dean Koontz. (Great choices)

(4) How do you choose character names? Their names just pop into my head. I know this sounds strange, but that’s what happens. (Interesting)

(5) Favorite Book(s): Interview With a Vampire

(6) Favorite Author(s): Anne Rice

(7) What book do you wish that you had written? I don’t have an answer for this one.

(8) What do you consider to be your best accomplishment? (This can be anything, doesn’t necessarily have to be writing related) Getting a publishing contract.

(9) Have you always wanted to write? Since 7th grade

(10) What advice would you give to aspiring writers? Never given up on your dreams and persistence pays off.

(11) If you could pick one other job, besides writing books and what you currently do besides writing books, what would that be? Interior Designer.

(12) Is there one subject that you would never write about? I’ll answer that a different way and state what I only write about which is dark vampire fantasy.

(13) What do you have going on right now? What can we expect next from you? I am currently working on The Vow, and in the queue is The Vampire Within.

(14) Do you listen to music when you write? If so, tell me 3-5 songs on your playlist. I do not listen to music when I write.

(15) Do you or have you incorporate(d) real life experiences into your books? No.

Crazy Questions:
(1) Have you ever been in a bar fight? No.

(2) A lot of times, characters in book find themselves in hard to get out of situations. When was the last time you found yourself in one of those and what did you do? I guess my life is rather boring as this hasn’t happened to me.

(3) What is your biggest fear? I don’t like to fly.

(4) What do you want written on your tombstone? Lover of animals. (Awesome!)

(5) Do you have any secret talents? I don’t know that it’s a secret but I’m also an artist.

(6) What is one place you have never been, but would love to go? Egypt. (Great choice!)

(7) If you were a superhero, what would your name be? And your power? Never thought about it.

(8) If you were an animal, what animal would you be? Basset Hound.

(9) What is one thing you would like to accomplish before you die? A best selling author with a large fan base.

(10) If you could have an accent from anywhere in the world, what accent would you choose? British. (Me too!)

(11) Do you have any tattoos? How many? None.

(12) Do you have any scars? From what? None.

(13) What was your favorite toy as a child? stuffed cats.

(14) What is your favorite food and drink? pizza and Starbucks.

(15) If you could be the opposite sex for a day, would you? Nope.

Thanks so much Laura, for answering these and for giving me the opportunity to read your book. I look forward to seeing what you do next!