Sunday, September 30, 2018

Sizzling Sunday: Fire in the Blood --#vampire #MMF #giveaway


Welcome to another Sizzling Sunday! Since it’s almost October and Halloween is on the way, I’m sharing a sexy sequence from my MMF vampire ménage romance Fire in the Blood. Starting tomorrow, this book will be on sale for only 99 cents, as part of my Month of Magic promotion. Or you can leave me a comment on this post... I’ll give away a copy to one lucky reader!

Blurb

Maddy and Troy hope that a care-free vacation in tropical Jamaica will re-ignite the passion in their five-year relationship. On a scenic mountain trail, Maddy's horse bolts and carries her deep into the jungle. Injured and lost, she is saved by a seductive giant of a man whose mere presence kindles unbearable lust. By the time she understands his dark nature, it is far to late for her to escape.

Bitter and alone, Etienne de Rémorcy haunts the forest around the ruined plantation of Fin d'Espoir. He has sworn to never again taste human blood, but when slender, raven-haired Madeleine begs him to take her, he cannot resist.

Troy is hugely relieved when Maddy makes her way back to their hotel after her ordeal in the mountains, but he finds her greatly changed—fiercely passionate in bed, restless and disturbed at other times. The tall, elegant stranger he meets on the beach hold the key to her transformation, and soon has seduced Troy as well. Even Etienne's most potent magic can't extinguish the fire in Troy's and Madeleine's blood.

Check out the trailer!  

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dzVRy4LTQe0 


 


Excerpt

Etienne dragged his belt from the loops of his dungarees. “Give me your hands,” he ordered. Madeleine held them out, palms turned upward in supplication. “I plan to bind you to ensure that you cannot escape me once we have begun. I will give you one more chance. Do you still want this?”

Maddy shivered, imagining herself restrained on the rough bed, powerless and at his mercy. Lust and fear warred in her body. Liquid dripped from her pussy, soaking the satiny robe bunched under her buttocks. She and Troy had played at bondage, silk scarves and velvet blindfolds. This was real.

She sought Etienne’s eyes, seeking reassurance. Fire flickered in the depths of those dark pools. His face was a beautiful mask that offered no solace. He gripped the belt in both hands, twisting as if testing it. “Et bien, Madeleine?”

She wanted it. She could not pretend otherwise. She wanted him, on any terms, wanted whatever he would do to her. Nothing mattered, not his terrifying strength, not his grim warnings, not the feeble image of Troy awaiting her back at the hotel. She reached for the bonds he offered. “Take me,” she whispered.

In an instant, he had slipped the end of the belt through the buckle and caught her wrists in the resulting loop. She felt the leather begin to bite into her skin as he pulled her arms above her head and a further tightness as he secured the other end to the metal bedstead. She tugged at the restraints, verifying the stark fact she could not, in fact, work herself free. Terror and arousal swept through her in alternating waves.

Her heart slammed against ribs. Her nipples and her clit throbbed with her pulse. Without being told, she spread her damp thighs. An oceany scent rose from her exposed pussy.

He shrugged off his vest and pushed his trousers down over his hips. Naked, he was even more formidable, his ebony thighs corded with muscle, his sculpted chest and flat belly gleaming like black marble. His erect cock sprang from the wiry thicket of his groin, on the same gigantic scale as the rest of his massive body.

The shaft looked thick as her wrist. Veins meandered along its endless dark length like creepers on a tree branch. The cap was dusky pink, taut, polished flesh that glistened with moisture.

Maddy moaned at the mere thought of that cock invading her. Saliva gathered in her mouth. “Etienne…” she pleaded, splaying her legs wider in lewd invitation. “Please…”

Little harlot! Have you no shame?” Even as he chided her, however, the black giant climbed back onto the bed, positioning himself between her thighs.

She expected ferocity, his power unleashed. She imagined him forcing that awe-inspiring cock deep into her body. Instead, he bent his head and flicked his tongue along the sensitive skin on the inside of her knee.

Ah…” Pleasure rippled through her, converging on her pussy. He licked again, moving upward, painting her with his cool saliva. She squirmed under his mouth, wanting to feel those thick lips on her aching clit. Gradually, he came closer to her centre, yet still he lingered on her thighs, kissing, nibbling, lapping up the juices that spilled from her hungry, empty sex. She arched up, pushing her pelvis towards him. Without effort, without removing his mouth, he forced her back onto the bed.

Leave me a comment and I’ll enter you in the drawing!

Friday, September 28, 2018

Discomfort Zone - #kink #violence #squicks

Corpse on stairs

I’ve been thinking about my comfort zones - topics I can write and explore without getting scared or squicked or otherwise wanting to stop - and the areas outside those boundaries. When it comes to sexual topics, there's not much that bothers me. I've written orgies , exhibitionism, bondage, all sorts of corporal punishment, infantilism, incest, enemas and golden showers, even so-called blood sports (although there was nothing playful about that tale). I won't say I'm totally relaxed penning stories with extreme elements - I'm more likely to be aroused - but in most cases I'm not uncomfortable.

There is one sort of content that I find induces extreme discomfort, though - any sort of serious violence.

I'm not talking about rough sex here; I've written plenty of scenes where someone wants to be fucked within an inch of his or her life, and someone else gladly complies. No, I'm referring to cases where a character gets beaten, stabbed, burned, blinded, castrated, literally tortured by another. Even if this activity is in the context of a relationship - even if the victim apparently consents - this sort of scene really bothers me. I recognize, a bit sheepishly, that few of my dominants possess more than a subtle streak of true sadism. I've never written a pure sadist, who gets his or her thrills from causing pain as opposed to being in control. That would make me much too uncomfortable.

Back in 2010, I edited my good friend C. Sanchez-Garcia's charitable short story collection, Coming Together Presents C. Sanchez-Garcia. One of the tales he included in the manuscript was "Miss Julia's Cake Club". Julia is a poverty-stricken Hispanic woman, beaten and abused by her husband, who lives in an unnamed military dictatorship. She is arrested and tortured by authorities who believe that she's somehow connected to an opposition political movement. Julia dreams of having a beautiful, well-equipped kitchen where she can cook and bake, sharing her love with others. Instead, for reasons she can't begin to fathom, she is subjected to incredible pain, terror and humiliation. One of the story's most extreme scenes offers a chilling description of water boarding, detailed enough to give anyone nightmares.

It was terribly difficult for me to work on "Miss Julia's Cake Club". It's a true, powerful, serious story about dignity, trust, freedom and redemption. It's not sensationalist or exploitative. Like almost everything Garce writes, it has a spiritual dimension. It is also, at times, intensely erotic, as Julia escapes into her fantasies. I could appreciate all this, but still, I had to force myself to read on.

I reviewed that story at least three or four times over the course of preparing the book for publication. It never lost its impact. It never failed to make me uncomfortable.

It occurs to me, looking back, that consciously or unconsciously, this might have been the author's intention. If one can read such a story of violence and abuse and remain comfortable, perhaps one has lost some aspect of humanity.

Of course, not all violent tales have redeeming social value. Pretty much all of them bother me, though. I especially dislike work that sexualizes cruelty (which Garce's story does not). I can't imagine writing something in that vein. Yes, I do have a scene in Necessary Madness where the villain plans to sacrifice the hero while fucking him, as part of a satanic ritual (and yes, that was pretty tough for me to write), but there's no violence for its own sake (and the hero of course manages to save himself, so there's just the threat of bloodshed, not the fact). I know, intellectually, that some people find the idea of inflicting serious pain and causing real physical damage to be arousing. I can't understand that, from an emotional perspective - and although I try hard to be tolerant and broad minded, I can't help feeling distinctly queasy.

So despite my carefully cultivated reputation for being a sexual pioneer, open to experimentation, willing to try (or at least to write about!) any sort of perversion, I guess I'm really a wimp.

I make no apologies.

Thursday, September 27, 2018

She's not what she seems - LIAR LIAR by @NancyBoyarsky - #Mystery #CriminalJustice #Giveaway

Liar Liar cover

Blurb

Nicole Graves finds herself in the crosshairs when she reluctantly agrees to babysit a witness in a high-profile rape trial. Mary Ellen Barnes is suing her university’s star quarterback for rape when the authorities won’t act. In the court of public opinion, Mary Ellen appears to be the quintessential, pious, good girl. But her lies and mysterious comings and goings lead Nicole to suspect that she’s not what she seems.


Excerpt

Nicole heard a sound and came in from the balcony in time to see Mary Ellen, now fully dressed, slip out the front door. Nicole ran after her. She couldn’t allow the girl to run off after what she’d said about the hopelessness of her predicament. By the time Nicole got to the elevator bank, it was empty. The girl was already on her way down.

Nicole couldn’t take the stairs; she was on the tenth floor. But the elevator bank had four cars, and luck was with her. Moments later, the door to another elevator opened. When she reached the lobby, she caught sight of Mary Ellen through the window. She had just left the building and was jaywalking across Ocean Avenue toward the beach.

Nicole rushed after her. The wind was picking up, blowing through her jacket. She was halfway across the street, when a car heading south skidded to a stop a few feet away. The driver leaned on his horn and opened his window to scream at her. She ignored him, trying to keep Mary Ellen in sight. The girl seemed to be headed toward the shoreline. When Nicole reached the sand, she started running. She was in good shape, but running on the beach was completely different from a morning jog around the neighborhood. Her shoes sank into the soft surface, making it impossible to gain momentum. Meanwhile, sand leaked into her shoes, chafing her sockless feet.

The beach near the waterline was dark, and Mary Ellen was no longer in sight. Nicole looked desperately around, trying to figure out which way the girl had gone. All at once she stumbled over something lying in her path. As she hit the sand, the figure she’d tripped over slowly sat up, like a zombie in a horror film.


About the Author

Nancy Boyarsky is the bestselling author of the award-winning Nicole Graves Mysteries.

Before turning to mysteries, Nancy coauthored Backroom Politics, a New York Times notable book, with her husband, Bill Boyarsky. She has written several textbooks on the justice system as well as articles for publications including the Los Angeles Times, Forbes, and McCall’s. She also contributed to political anthologies, including In the Running, about women’s political campaigns. In addition to her writing career, she was communications director for political affairs for ARCO.

Liar Liar is the third Nicole Graves novel, following The Swap and The Bequest, each of which can be read as a stand alone. Readers are invited to connect with Nancy through her website at nancyboyarsky.com.



Nancy Boyarsky will be awarding a $15 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Book Hooks: The Eyes of Bast - #pnr #shapeshifter #MFRWHooks #MFRWAuthor

The Eyes of Bast cover

It has been a long time since I’ve participated into the Book Hooks hop. Today I have a bit from one of my purest romance tales, with a pair of soul mates you will love. The Eyes of Bast is paranormal erotic romance with a twistperfect for Halloween.

When you’re done with my hook, I hope you’ll visit the other authors participating in today’s hop. You’ll find their links at the end of this post.



Blurb


Trust your heart. Follow your dreams.

Shaina Williams’ grandmother bequeathed her that wisdom, along with an old pendant from the Islands, carved from an ocelot’s tooth. When instinct tells Shaina to visit the feral cat trap she’s set in Central Park, she listens to that inner voice. She discovers she’s caged a magnificent black tom, but the cat inexplicably vanishes after she tends to his wounds. Seeking the errant feline, Shaina encounters instead a handsome stranger whose slightest touch sets her body on fire. As the day dawns after a night of ferocious passion, her mysterious lover is forced back into his true shape—the tomcat she rescued.

Born a cat, Tom was transformed into an unwilling shape shifter by a sorceress who craved a human plaything to satisfy her perverse lusts. Centuries old and irresistibly powerful, Delphine Montserrat will stop at nothing to find her runaway familiar. Shaina vows to do whatever is necessary to defeat the vicious but seductive witch and save the man she believes is her soul mate—even though it might mean losing him forever.

The Hook

Tendrils of morning sunlight brought me back to full awareness. Tom lay sprawled on top of me, apparently asleep. A peace I hadnt felt in ages stole over me. I stroked his luxuriant jet-black hair and listened to his regular breathing. I didnt mind his weight. It made me feel safe, whole.

A ray slanted through the blinds to gild his dark skin and he stirred, rubbing against me. The friction instantly rekindled my desire.Good morning, lover,I murmured in his ear.

His eyes flew open. In their green-gold depths, I saw unexpected terror.Shaina…” he croaked, tumbling off me onto the floor. On his hands and knees, he scampered to the opposite corner of the room, near the closet and as far as from the window as possible. He couldnt escape the sun.

I watched, horrified, as his body dwindled and shrank. Black fur crept out to cover his naked skin, expanding from the patches of hair on his chest and at his groin. A tail sprouted between his thighs. His human features became progressively more feline.

The transformation could not have taken more than sixty seconds, but I saw every agonizing instant, every stage of distortion. I watched my lover disappear, to be replaced by a dumb animalthe massive tomcat Id rescued in the park. Tears streamed down my cheeks as the cat circled anxiously, jumped onto the bed and howled.

I felt like doing the same.

* * *

Get your copy of this heart-wrenching novella today!


Barnes and Noble:

Totally Bound:

And don’t forget to visit the other authors participating in MFRW Book Hooks this Wednesday!


Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Review Tuesday: Bleeding Edge by Thomas Pynchon - #ReviewTuesday #NewYork #DotComCollapse

Bleeding Edge cover

Bleeding Edge by Thomas Pynchon
Penguin Books, 2013

It’s early 2001 in New York. Divorced Jewish mother Maxine Tarnow used to be a certified fraud investigator, until she skated too close to the dark side and lost her license. That hasn’t diminished the reputation of Tail ‘Em and Nail ‘Em, the firm she runs out of a small Upper West Side office. Indeed, she’s seems to be in greater demand than ever, by clients with tangled connections to various dubiously legal activities, and to each other. In the wake of the dot-com collapse, the city’s investors, entrepreneurs and hackers are all scrambling to save themselves. They’ll stoop to anything to keep their heads above water: embezzlement, drug-running, money laundering, weapons smuggling, even murder. They’re doing deals with crime bosses, foreign spies, terrorists and the Feds, losing themselves and their souls in real and simulated conspiracies, hiding out in underground bunkers and on the Dark Web, in the vast reaches of cyberspace where commercialism hasn’t yet penetrated.

Like a spider in its web, geek billionaire Gabriel Ice lies at the heart of these plots and counter-plots, pulling strings and making plans. All Maxine’s contacts — video-pirate- turned-film-maker Reg Despard, sleazy venture capitalist Rocky Slagiatt, Russian agent Igor Dashkov, crooked accountant Lester Traipse, neo-con operative Nicholas Windust, even Maxi’s best friend Heidi — are somehow linked to Ice and his paradoxically profitable company hashslingrz.com. At the same time, Maxine appears to be a nexus herself, as these varied characters explode into her life, dragging her on midnight boat trips to vast harborside landfills, pulling her into drunken and drug-infused parties, convincing her to take a turn on the stage at a strip club. Mysterious USB memory sticks and DVDs are delivered to her, full of classified dossiers and videos taken by hidden cameras. As she struggles to make sense of what’s going on, threats pile up, people around her die or disappear, and finally, two planes barrel into the World Trade Center, turning it to a cloud a toxic dust.

I realize that as a summary, the above paragraphs seem pretty incoherent. I’m trying to capture the delirious, frantic, nearly overwhelming complexity of Bleeding Edge. This brilliant, funny, frightening book is one of the best things I’ve read in a long time, but it’s almost impossible to describe. What is it “about”? The raw wound in the American psyche ripped open by 9/11? The vanishing of the beloved and familiar in New York, and by extension, everywhere? The co-opting of the Internet and every other type of media? The gutted dream of freedom, personal responsibility, even personal agency? The nature of reality?

All of the above. Bleeding Edge casts a gritty, ironic spotlight on our times (and despite the supposedly historical references, the book is definitely a commentary on our times, not the early years of the century). Yet it has touches of magical realism, as Maxine catches glimpses of the dead and experiences the occasional revelation. It’s also hilarious, with acerbic dialogue and perfectly-pitched cultural nuance.

Maxine herself is a delight, a tough, smart, compassionate, sentimental Yenta who’s also a sexy MILF. Though disturbed by the chaos around her, visited by dark, twisted dreams whose meaning eludes her, she somehow remains centered. She takes shopping to the level of an art, knows where to find the best bagels, mothers her two sons without smothering them. At the same time, she packs a revolver in her handbag and hardly thinks twice about kicking off her shoes to satisfy a foot fetishist.

Let me warn you; once you begin reading this book, you’re committed. One review on Amazon commented that Pynchon demands your full attention. I wholeheartedly agree. The sheer number of characters means you’re likely to forget who’s who if you take a break to sample something else. I put the novel down for a few weeks and found I needed to start from the beginning. The book is not exactly difficult (though Pynchon has that reputation), but it’s so rich it may spoil your appetite for other fiction.

How can I summarize a rollicking, provocative, pyrotechnic masterpiece like Bleeding Edge? I can’t. All I can do is urge you to read it.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Not your usual ghost story - Kayelle Allen's Lights Out #SpaceOpera #SciFi

What if today was "lights out?"

Read Lights Out in The Expanding Universe #SpaceOpera #NewRelease by @KayelleAllen

If you knew this was your last day to live, what would you do? Would you face the end with a clear conscience? Would you fight for one more day? Look for that person you wronged and make it right? Run away? Turn and fight? What would you do?

In Lights Out by Kayelle Allen, the hero knows his end is near. Instead of running, Tornahdo makes a choice. He will face death with a clear conscience and the knowledge that his death will serve mankind. He will join... GHOST CORPS



He can save mankind. After he does one important thing. Die.

Join the Ghost Corps, they said. You'll live forever, they said. You'll save mankind, they said. They didn't say that to do it, first he had to die.

When Tornahdo signs on the dotted line, he puts his life into the steady hands of the mighty Ghost Corps. Three grisly deaths and three agonizing resurrections later, he's assigned duty on Enderium Six.

He's facing his most dangerous mission yet, the very reason the corps exists.

Do they expect him to win? Fat chance. Tornahdo and his team are already dead and this mission is codenamed "Lights Out." No, there's more to this than he can see.

To discover the truth, he must face an unbeatable, unkillable enemy, and this time--somehow--find a way to keep himself alive...

Excerpt, Lights Out by Kayelle Allen

The air reeked of antiseptic and starch stiffened the pillowcase. If only the mind-numbing jabbering would stop.

Tornahdo pried open his eyes. The flattened blood bag above him, stenciled equipment and gray walls screamed military hospital.

He'd died. Again.

Spanish curses slipped out. His abuela would've taken a switch to him. He made the sign of the cross and kissed his fingertips.

After yanking the tube out of his arm, he pressed a thumb over the entry point. Thankfully, this time, he wasn't writhing on the floor in agony. Well, not yet.

A faceless android in a Ghost Corps uniform loomed over a bank of equipment displaying Tornahdo's name and vitals. First impression was right. Military hospital.

The weapons-grade yapping continued.

"Did you hear?" a youthful voice bragged. "He killed six of 'em last night."

"Yeah, but they don't stay dead. They never do."

"If Ultras didn't come back to life, their plasma wouldn't bring our own people back."

The transfusion of enemy blood healed the hole in Tornahdo's arm in seconds. He thumbed off the red smear and rolled over on the gurney.

An open door led to a sink and toilet built to let gravity do its work. Which meant this was a planet. You hadn't lived until you were in space, floating in zero gravity while your body's final twitches sent your corpse spinning.

Notices on the wall confirmed this was San Xavier in the Colonies of Man. Same place he'd bought it the first time.

This was getting old.


Lights Out part of the Science Fiction/Space Opera anthology 
The Expanding Universe Vol 4
edited by Craig Martelle Available Sept 17, 2018 Exclusively on Amazon and Kindle Unlimited https://kayelleallen.com/lights-out-save-mankind/

Peek Inside Lights Out

Go behind the scenes with the world and characters of Lights Out with an exclusive illustrated PDF book. Nothing to sign for or opt in to get. Just click and read: http://bit.ly/peek-lights-out

Read Lights Out in The Expanding Universe #SpaceOpera #NewRelease by @KayelleAllen

About Kayelle Allen

Kayelle Allen writes Sci Fi and Space Opera with misbehaving robots, mythic heroes, role playing immortal gamers, and warriors who purr. She's a US Navy veteran who's been married so long she's tenured. She is the author of seven books, three novellas, and multiple short stories.

 

Kayelle's Contact Information


Join one of Kayelle's reader groups and get four free books right away https://kayelleallen.com/reader-groups


Friday, September 21, 2018

Looking for Adventure (In All the Wrong Places) - #Adventure #Inspiration #WriteWhatYouKnow @Heather_Curley


Claimed cover

By Heather Hambel Curley (Guest Blogger)

If the experts are right, and we’re supposed to write what we know, I really should be writing the dull saga of a mid-thirties mother, who is still obsessed with boy bands, wears too much eyeliner, and stays in the house most of the time. Not like, sexy housewife stays in the house all day, but more like working a day job, doing laundry, and picking up a bizarre amount of sweaty, stinky socks draped around the house by two children. And never getting to use the bathroom alone.

Relatable. But not exciting.

When I started writing I was in fourth grade. My best friend Sara and I wrote stories about girls exactly like us—except way more popular—who ate lunch together in the cafeteria, liked grape kool-aid, and watched VCR tapes together after school. Shortly after that, when I was far more sophisticated and worldly, in fifth grade, I started writing ‘scary’ stories about four friends who were abandoned by a creepy school bus driver in the woods and start exploring a haunted house: falling through floors, kissing boys, and solving mysteries. All without one single cell phone!

Once I figured out that I was taking this ‘writing what you know’ thing way more literally than was good for my writing, I started to write about what I wanted. I wrote about women with lots of tattoos and piercings; of teenage girls who battle ghosts during the Civil War; of drug addicted survivors and of brooding, long haired men. I wrote the stories that I wanted to read—awkward women like me, but with better paying jobs from college degrees they actually use and adventures that leave me breathless. Is it always what I know? Not exactly. But, I mean, I know how to be female. So, that’s a start. And I’ll take inspiration from wherever I can get it: I once wrote a novel after being inspired by a zombie video game my husband was playing. The novel had nothing to do with zombies: it was the setting; the Wild West and a long haired, brooding male character. Yee haw!

That’s not to say that I don’t sometimes stumble upon my own adventure. I’m a mom, for pete’s sake, there’s nothing more terrifying than two boys who have been quiet for way too long, followed by, “Hey, Mom….come see what we did!” I’ve ridden the Hot Mess Highway since my first son was born in 2010. But I’ve also done a wee bit of traveling: I’ve stood on top of Mayan ruins in Mexico. I’ve been drunk in a speeding taxi in Bulgaria. I’ve petted a rhinoceros. I’ve run a half-marathon. And from those experiences, comes reality in writing: the eerie silence and smooth stones in temple ruins; the thrill of a car chase; the heart-pounding panic of being next to a giant, wild creature (except I was at the zoo and it was in a holding space….not like, me on some kind of safari with a jaunty hat and khaki shorts).

My most recent release, Claimed, has absolutely nothing to do with anything I know. But it’s definitely something I’d want to read:

The first time the world ended, she went into hiding.

The second time, she became a fugitive.

When war breaks out between two American political coalitions, witch Wren Richards is forced into hiding. She and her family conceal themselves and their power, living on only what they can grow and create with their own hard work. But then there is a break in the doldrums of normalcy: Wren is sent to fetch supplies in town.

And then the atomic bomb hits. Everything changes. Now Wren isnt just a witch: shes a survivor. A slave. A water seeker. A murderer. She and her sister are kidnapped and dragged to another dimension. As witches, theyll fetch a higher dollar at auction. Because as witches, energy can be sourced from their souls. The only person who can save Wren is herself.

And shes just been sold to the highest bidder.

Maybe Wren is a throwback to those kids on the school bus I wrote about in fifth grade. She’s on the run, acting on instinct and gut feeling. There’s no cell phones, no one to help her. And then, just when she thinks it can’t get any worse….the world ends. Again. In the end, though, she’s just as awkward and unimpressed as the rest of us:


When the Age of Man was balanced on a crumbling precipice, the covens shattered and we returned to the woods.

We’d fled to the forest a week before my nineteenth birthday and now, a
year later, we were still here. My mother’s precognition abilities were first rate, but even she had to admit her visions had changed. The End was less certain now. There was still a finality to everything—to man, to Earth, to the stagnant lives we lived—but she couldn’t tell us how it was going to happen.

Or when.

I flexed my arms, forcing my body weight down on the mortar to grind the corn into a fine powder. When we’d left our house in the city, my father insisted we retreat as far from civilization as we could. That meant felling our own trees and building our homestead by hand; we harvested our own food and sought out clean water. Clean was turning out to be a relative term. When my parents weren’t looking, my younger sister would cast a purification spell and we lugged the buckets back to the lodge.

I dragged my wrist across my forehead, blotting away beads of sweat. A year. We’d been tucked in the hills for over a year and still weren’t allowed to use our powers. No magic. No spells or telekinesis. Before the war, we’d kept our abilities to ourselves—unless under Coven sanction—but now? We were alone. There was no one to panic that we were writhing with the devil or causing all the world’s problems with our abilities. No one to grit their teeth and spit at us. Witch. Their fear of the unknown, the things they didn’t understand, always spewed out as hate.

Leaning back against my heels, I arched my back in an attempt to ease the searing pain from my spine. War was everywhere. You can’t rely on power alone, my parents drilled it into our heads like there was a chance we might forget, you need to take what you have and survive. Thrive.

I crouched over the corn again, slamming the pestle against the kernels. I wouldn’t call this thriving. This was hard work: this was waking up early and going to bed as soon as the sun set. This was the shit I’d read about in history class when I’d been in school. It was no way to live.

I’m so tired of cornbread.” My sister, Soleil, set a large bucket on the ground and settled down next to it, reaching in and pulling out the skeleton of a basket. Pushing her sleeves up, she started weaving the reeds together. For once, I’d love one of those yeast rolls Nana Gumm used to make when we were kids. Remember?”

Well. Find me yeast, flour that doesn’t turn rancid in this godawful heat, and bring Nana Gumm back from the dead.” I threw my back into the grinding, trying to force the kernels to break up on my sheer will alone. Then you can have yeast rolls.”

With melted butter? Remember?” She grinned, her smile punctuated by her dimples. That was always the best part of dinner. I could have eaten a dozen on my own.”

She’s been dead almost thirteen years. I’m surprised you remember.”

I remember everything.”

She was right. Soleil was only sixteen, but it seemed like she’d honed in on her abilities far better than I ever had. Part of me hated her for it: her abilities to commune with nature, to properly and efficiently cast a healing spell or circle spell. She couldn’t master divination and her telekinetic abilities were almost nonexistent. At least I had that over her.

To read the rest of Wren’s story, you can grab it in paperback or as an ebook: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B06ZXSLK93/

About the Author


Heather Hambel Curley is a thirty-something year old fake red head from the city of Pittsburgh. She has a growing collection of tattoos, a love for the Caribbean, and an obsession for running (like a T-Rex, she has strong legs and feeble arms). Currently, she lives in central Pennsylvania with her patient husband and two, rowdy sons.





Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Why Ghosts, Supernatural, and Kendra Spark? @SPDavis788 #ghosts #FBI #Suspense

By S. Peters-Davis (Guest Blogger)

Hello, Lisabet, and everyone visiting Beyond Romance:) Thank you for stopping in and checking out the fun stuff of ghosts and supernatural…oh, yes, and Kendra Spark.

So, who is Kendra Spark? Besides a mystery-romance author created from my imagination…and her specifically tapping into my subconscious wanting to come out and play as a story-star in a series of books. She sees ghosts and can actually communicate with them, which acts as a curse or as a gifted ability depending on who she’s communicating with and who happens to be around witnessing her bizarre behavior.

The subconscious part in my brain (the one Kendra tapped into) actually remembers seeing a ghost, a few times, when I was between the ages of five and seven. I didn’t recognize the old woman and she scared the crap out of me whenever she reached her arms toward me. Needless to say, my parents got sick of getting woken up by my terrified screaming – and they chalked it up to a nasty nightmare, but I wasn’t asleep and the ghost was real.

That ability of seeing the ghost had shut down, and I later recognized the old woman ghost as my grandmother on my father’s side. She had passed away when I was two years old, and I had never met her. I was much older when I saw a photo of her and wished for the “ghost-seer” ability to come back so that we may communicate.

The ability has come back to me through Kendra Spark: ) Man…I absolutely love writing fiction;)

In the first book of the series, Unorthodox, Kendra’s BFF, Jenna, an FBI Criminal Analysis, gets ghostisized. Their friendship continues and so does Jenna’s ability to analyze criminal behavior. FBI Agent of hotness, Derek Knight, leads the team and utilizes Kendra’s ability to communicate with Jenna and the murdered victims. I didn’t specifically mention romance, but there definitely is tension growing between Kendra and Derek.

So, I’ve shared about Kendra Spark and the ghost reference, but what about the supernatural spin? Oh, my…Supernatural, the show with Dean and Sam (gotta love Dean’s husky masculine voice, yummy!) – I adore that show. I’m a freak about all kinds of paranormal/supernatural entities. To me, that’s fiction at its finest:) I love the spin of worlds under worlds or over worlds with the preternatural. And it plays a pretty good part in the Kendra Spark Series.

There you have it – why ghosts, supernatural, and Kendra Spark? They all have played major roles in my life and subconscious and are now coming out in my fiction. I hope you enjoy the series: )

Kendra Spark Novel Series

Kendra sees ghosts, and then her BFF, Jenna, becomes one. The two friends and FBI agent Derek Knight fight to bring justice for the victims of heinous crimes.



Unorthodox

Kendra’s ability of communicating with the dead is requested by her FBI criminal analyst friend to stop a killer from murdering agents.

Kendra Spark, suspense-mystery romance author and communicator with the dead, is requested to hop on the first flight to D.C.
Jenna Powers, FBI criminal analyst and estranged best friend of Kendra, gets ghosticized in a fatal accident before relaying all the details of the FBI killer case.

Derek Knight, a dedicated (hot) FBI Special Task Force agent, takes lead on the case.

The investigation into the FBI agent killings continues as Kendra, Jenna – yes, even after death – and Derek work together on the case before Director of the Special Task Force Jackson Powers’ number is up. He’s Jenna’s father and the end-game of the killer’s target list.

Somehow the elusive killer remains undetected, until Kendra’s unique ability produces results and a final possibility at stopping his killing spree before it’s too late.



Malevolent

Trafficked girls marked to lose their souls by a malevolent supernatural entity require someone with explicit abilities for their rescue. Will Kendra be able to save them?

Kendra Spark, suspense-mystery writer and communicator with the dead, signs on to the next FBI Special Task Force case, trafficked girls that are marked to lose their souls.

Jenna Powers, ghostified criminal analyst, sticks close to the case as she and Kendra are also marked by the same malevolent supernatural force.

Derek Knight, lead FBI Agent on this case, learns of the malevolent entity and the deeper paranormal realm of danger.

Kendra’s unfiltered feelings for Derek struggle to take a backseat, and as the menacing threat grows more intense, so does her passion for Derek.

Derek faces uncertainties he’s never dealt with in his past, like malicious entities and the loss of his heart to love. How can he protect Kendra against forces he can’t see?

As boundless supernatural danger intertwines with the future reality of the trafficked teens, Kendra and Jenna realize only they can shoulder the rescue by calling in a voodoo priestess…


About the Author


S. Peters-Davis writes multi-genre stories, but loves penning a good page-turning suspense-thriller, especially when it’s a ghost story and a romance. When she’s not writing, editing, or reading, she’s hiking, RV’ing, fishing, playing with grandchildren, or enjoying time with her favorite muse (her husband) in Southwest Michigan.

She also writes YA paranormal, supernatural novels as DK Davis.









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