Friday, December 20, 2013

Paint Nite!

A good friend of mine recently told me about paint nite, its an event where you go to (in our case Casey's Pub) have drinks, eat and paint. I knew I had to try it out because there was a brief time in my life were I did dabble in paintings. After being sent the link to Paint Nite's website I signed up for African Sunset. Ezra Edmond was our Artist for the night, he was a lot of fun and encouraged us to do our own interpretations of the painting.

This is painting was done by Ezra, however, the original one was done by Jessica Behm and she created this for Paint Nite. I took a photo of African Sunset so you could see what we were aiming for. Over at my table we were very competitive with our work which made it a very entertaining night.

We did very different things with our paintings:
 Grace decided to go with blues and instead of a sun she did the moon which she later called a spaceship because as you know a moon doesn't rise.


 Carol went with darker hues with her painting. 


And here I am looking very serious as I work. (I actually took this photo off of Paint Nite's Facebook page! I didn't realize they took this one of me or I would have smiled!)


This was such a fun and competitive night that we decided to return for Cherry Blossom night. 
Here's my painting of 'Cherry Blossoms' originally created by Kristina Elizabeth for Paint Nite. 

If you'd like some more info on Ezra you can take a look here: Ezra Edmond
this link is updated regularly with info on his paint nights.
Or if you'd like more info on Paint Nite Events
and of course you can take a look on their facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/paintnitela
They do have paint nites in other areas so you might found one near you and if you do be daring and try it out. 

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty


I've always loved the story of Sleeping Beauty, there is a timelessness about it. Its a story that we are all familiar with as there have been countless interpretations of the tale. I've been a patron of the The Ahmanson Theatre and they always mail me magazines containing info on their upcoming productions and listed among them was Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty. Although this was not just any interpretation of the story this was done was beautifully done and told in a creative new way.

Its a Ballet of course, but its not only a ballet its a Gothic Romance with Vampires and Faries. I was lucky enough to watch this December 1st which was the last day it would be at the Ahmanson. I really wish I had seen it sooner because I knew that once I told my friends and family about this show they would want to see it.
Matthew Bourne, the man behind this incredible production was there and he stepped out onto the stage at the very beginning, before the curtains went up, and welcomed us and explained his version of the show and even shared that this show would be the last for many of the cast. Before the Ballet began we were treated with a local ballet troupe who performed, they were students who probably ranged between the ages of 12 and 16 and they were stunning.

This ballet was beautifully done and I would see it again because there is so much detail that you really should see it twice just so you don't miss anything. I also know several people who are jealous that they missed out on this and are waiting for it to come back.
   

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

From the Outback


Title: From The Outback

Author: Ann B. Harrison

Publisher: Self Published

Formats Available In: Digital

Blurb: Although desperate to get out of her dead end job, Sami is cynical when she hears of an inheritance from the grandfather she never knew. But once she and her young brother arrive in the beautiful valley, she discovers they are not wanted...especially by the sexy vineyard owner next door. 

Will she persevere and make a home for them, or give in and take the easy money when the going gets tough?

Excerpt:

A thump sounded on the bedroom door, jarring her from a deep sleep.

"Go away." Samantha Grace Rose Darling groaned into her pillow.

"Sami, phone."

"Tell them to fuck off and let me sleep." She threw a pillow at the door seconds before it eased open and her brother poked his head in the room. "Garth, I'm warning you, go away."

He sighed and she waited for the usual whine to follow. "There's an old guy on the phone. Said he wants to speak to you."

"Tell him I'm not here." She rolled over, brushed the hair from her face and then glared at him through half-closed eyes.

"I did but he insists on speaking to you. Said he wasn't going to go away until he does."
She groaned, pushed her blanket off with her hand and slowly slid out of bed. With languid grace Sami advanced on her brother intent on doing bodily harm to whoever it was who had the audacity to disturb her sleep. Holding out the phone, Garth waited for her to take it before he backed out of the room and quietly shut the door, leaving her alone.

"This better be bloody good. I pulled a double shift last night and I'm freaking tired."

Walking over to the window, she pushed aside the faded curtain and flinched when the bright Alice Springs sunlight filled her room, scorching her tired eyes. She promptly dropped the curtain into place wishing she'd left it alone. Sami rubbed her eyes and waited.

"Am I talking to Miss Samantha Grace Rose Darling?"

"Yeah." She dropped down to the edge of her bed, her fingers tracing a bruise on her leg from when she had bumped into a tray of glasses last night. I am such a klutz.

"Miss Darling, my name is Rupert Newland. I'm a solicitor with Newland, Newland and Cooper in Singleton, New South Wales."

She spat out a laugh before covering her mouth with the heel of her hand.

"I'm glad I amuse you. Now if you would be so kind as to contain yourself, I have news for you."

The voice on the other end of the phone was clipped and precise.

"I am acting on behalf of your grandfather's estate with regard to his final will and testament."

"I don't know who you're talking about. I don't have any family." Names ran through her mind but grandparents didn't come into the picture she had tucked away in her memory. "Nope. No grandparents I can lay claim to, sorry mate. You obviously have the wrong girl."

"Miss Darling, I have checked the facts and you are indeed the granddaughter of my late client. I need you to could come into the office for the reading of the will."

"Where did you say you were again?" Sami kicked through the pile of clothes on the bedroom floor and picked up the crumpled jeans from yesterday. She tucked the phone between her ear and shoulder to hold it firmly while she pulled her jeans on. One foot after the other she slid each leg into the jeans and yanked them up, wiggling her butt to pull them over her hips. Sami popped the button and did up the zip before she took the phone in her hand again.

"New South Wales, Hunter Valley. Singleton to be exact," he said.

"Mate, I don't know if you looked at the post code before you called me but I live in Alice Springs. In the middle of the frigging desert in the Northern Territory. I can't pop down the road and see you, understand?" She blew a stray curl from her face.

With one hand she opened her bedroom door and walked out to the lounge room. Garth tidied up his breakfast dishes and she smiled in his direction. He pointed to the coffee machine and Sami blew him a kiss.

"It will be worth your while to drive or fly down Miss Darling."

"I can't afford it, okay? It's not like I do double shifts at the pub because I enjoy the work. I need the money and there isn't enough at the end of the week for a happy little visit to your office. Tell me what you want to say and let me get on with my day now you've dragged me from my bed." She lifted a hand and rubbed at her eyes.

"Very well. You have inherited Buttercup Farm and it's contents. There is also a bank account with a small balance which I will disclose once you have formally proven your identity."

"Are you serious?"

Garth looked over at her, his shoulders raised in question. She shook her head and turned away.

"I did send you paperwork last week but I didn't receive a reply, hence the follow up phone call today." The solicitor’s bristling attitude irritated her.

A pile of unopened mail sat on the cluttered kitchen counter and Sami screwed up her face. Out of habit she threw the next day's mail on top of the pile, dreading the bills inside the envelopes. The longer she ignored it, the larger the pile grew.

"Sorry. I've um... been a bit busy and haven't got around to opening the mail for a few days."

"Well I suggest you do that. I need signatures to transfer the bank account into your name. It would be significantly easier if you were here in town. Since you are not, I would appreciate it if you could go to the nearest courthouse and have a Justice of the Peace witness your identity and your signature where I have indicated. It might be best if you  Express Post the papers back to me today. You have to decide what to do with the farm and the stock." There was silence for a few seconds. "If I might make a suggestion? There are interested parties if you should decide to sell the property. Would you like me to have it valued for you? I can arrange everything from this end if you would prefer."
"No, no. I need to think about this for a bit. I'll ring you back after I read your letter. Thanks for calling." Sami hung up and threw the phone onto the couch and dropped her head into her hands.

"What is it? Was the landlord after his rent again? Sami, tell me."

"No, Garth. It was a solicitor." A wobbly laugh rose in her throat. "It seems as though we had family after all, even though he's dead."

Purchase Links:




Traditional or Indie Publishing
When I subbed my first book it was the intention of getting a contract with a publisher. I wanted the validation of being good enough to grab the editors eye with my awesome story before I even thought of indie publishing.
I went on to publish four books with Breathless Press and two with their Young Adult house Lycaon Press before giving indie publishing much thought.
Why take so long, I hear you ask? Well, I had a lot to learn as a writer for a start. The industry is changing rapidly, something we all know. I had to find out where I wanted to sit and indie is now the place for me.
Let me explain why. I sell fairly well with my books. So well that I was approached by a large publisher and asked to write for them. As it turns out, they didn't like the book I was working on and I decided to self publish it. That book is selling hand over fist and I see my money every month, unlike most publishers who only pay quarterly. Was I thankful they turned me down? Hell yes!
The best thing about it all? I didn't have to wait for them to fit it into their schedule which can be as long as a year. You can make a lot of money in that amount of time.
It took me a couple of days to get the hang of self publishing but I did it. And I'm a techno dummy with things like formatting etc. Believe me, anyone can do it. I made my own cover, easy peasy and in no time, the book was live on Amazon. I also read the hype that they are cornering the market with the self publishing but let me tell you, I don't care. It works for me and I'm more than happy to stay with them.
I now have four books indie published and two more in the works. You could say I'm hooked on indie publishing now. 

FYI this is a great book to read if you are thinking along the same lines. http://www.amazon.com/Naked-Truth-About-Self-Publishing-ebook/dp/B00DHPQGN0
Ann's rural books can be found here http://www.annbharrisonromance.com/rural-reads.html
The book the publisher turned down is here http://www.amazon.com/Outback-Ann-B-Harrison-ebook/dp/B00G1SIOAI



About Ann B. Harrison:

Ann swears she was born with a book in her hands and has never put it down. A lifelong love of reader has finally culminated in achieving her dream of writing...and publication.

She lives in the beautiful Hunter Valley with her own handsome hero of many years. Ann has always loved the ups and downs of life in small communities and she shares this with readers in her rural romances.

Strong sexy heroines with a good dash of sass thrown in feature in her stories. Of course these women need an equally strong hero. Bring on the outback hero and watch the passion ignite.

When not writing Ann enjoys reading, gardening, walking her very large dog Hugo and fighting with her computer.

Ann’s Social Media Links:



Monday, November 25, 2013

The Blacksmiths Son



Title: The Blacksmith’s Son

Author: Rebecca Thomas

Publisher: Entangled Publishing

Formats Available In: Digital

Publication Date: November 25th 2013

Blurb: Captain Quentin Drake returns home after his naval commission ends to find a groom being beaten in the village stables. He refuses to turn a blind eye to the lad's mistreatment and intervenes, taking the lad to his room. Only to discover the boy...is a woman.

After Ally Lockwood witnesses an earl committing murder, she fears for her life. She flees his estate and masquerades as a blacksmith’s male apprentice. Her ruse is up when a handsome stranger tending to her wounds disrobes her. Captain Drake lures Ally into believing she can return to life as a woman, but it may draw the killer back on her trail.

Purchase Links:


Excerpt:

1835, Liverpool, England

Ally’s steps slowed and she glanced between buildings. Lightning flashed in the distance, temporarily rendering her blind against the black of night. She peered down the street, seeking any signs of movement. Carefully, she set the rifle down to tighten the belt holding up her trousers. She double-checked her cap, making sure no strands of hair fell loose.

After she was positive no one followed her, she picked up her rifle and crept along the stable’s back entrance. An ominous boom of thunder rumbled and a drizzle of rain spit across her cheeks. She paused, lingering in the shadows of the stable, waiting for any sign of people.

She leaned her shoulder against the door, gripping her rifle in one hand and a lantern in the other, and stepped inside. Wariness grazed her spine as she studied each hinged gate along the dirt walkway. Licking the rainwater from her lips, she gazed into the last stall on the right at the colt.

The young sorrel lay on his side, his body thrashing. Terror blazed in his dark brown eyes. He struggled to stand. His back leg was splinted and wrapped and unable to support his weight. Ally set the lantern down beside the colt with trembling hands. A wave of nausea overcame her. She clutched her stomach and willed her nerves to settle.
A spattering of rain sounded on the roof in a low steady hum. She pressed the cool base of the rifle stock against her cheek and hardened her resolve to do what must be done. The metal from the trigger burned into her finger. Gently, she placed the tip of the barrel against the colt’s temple. The colt’s dark eyes widened.

Time stopped.

“I’m so sorry,” she whispered in a raspy puff of breath.

She steadied her hold on the rifle.

The colt looked at her as though he understood, as though he’d already forgiven her.
“I can’t do it.” The rifle slipped from her hands. She fell to her knees and retched.
Defeated, she dropped her chin to her chest and cried. How could anyone let an animal suffer so? She had to take him out of his misery. She had to.

A loud crash at the front stable door jolted Ally from her despair. Footsteps followed the screech of gate hinges.

“You there, boy—” The man pointed a slim finger at her. “What do you think you’re doing?”

Her blood turned cold in a jolt of recognition. She knew that face: Harrison Cross, the Earl of Linford. “M—Milord, I was just attending to this colt.”

“You.” A murderous rage flashed in the depths of his ice blue eyes.

She knew those eyes and she prayed he didn’t recognize her.
  
About Rebecca Thomas:
 
Rebecca Thomas enjoys a love-hate relationship with Alaska. She lives there with her husband and two teen-aged sons where she appreciates all the unique things the last frontier has to offer. When she isn’t reading, writing, or playing board games, she is cheering for her sons at their hockey games and tennis matches.


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Holiday Giveaway!

Its been a busy couple of months for me as I've been working on the follow up to my book Murder on Mars. I'm planning on having book 2 ready to go by January 2014! It's called Bayou Blues and will be centered around a new mystery for Ava to solve. 

I will be sharing more about Bayou Blues in the next few weeks, but in the meantime I'm pleased to say that I'm participating with Bewitching Book Tours and their Holiday Giveaway! This giveaway is to celebrate our wonderful readers who have been absolutely amazing throughout the year!


Here is the info on the giveaway:

1 Kindle Fire HD 8.9 inch or equivalent value Amazon Gift Card

3 Bewitching Prize Packs full of books and book swag goodies- open to US Shipping- prize packs may contain print copies of The Hallowed Ones by Laura Bickle, Would Be Witch by Kimberly Frost and Earth Angel by E Van Lowe, Paranormal Pleasures by Roxanne Rhoads, Tasty Christmas Treats by Roxanne Rhoads- books will be distributed among the 3 prize packs

1  e-book set of the first three books in the Seven Seals Series by Traci Douglass

1 Release, book 3 of The Angler series by Annie Nicholas

1 ebook copy Murder on Mars A New Orleans Mystery by MM Shelley

1 Ebook giveaway Hollow’s End by Marianne Morea

1 Ebook copy of Tigress by JE Taylor

1 ebook copy of In Flames by Jessica Jayne

1 copy of River Road by Suzanne Johnson

1 ebook copy of Visionary- Unleashed by N Dunham

1 copy of each Bleeding Hearts and Blood Rush by Ash Krafton

1 ebook copy of Soul Meaning (Seventeen Book 1) by AD Starrling

1 ebook copy of Blaze Ignites by JL Madore

1  e-book copy of Operation Earth by Maria Hammarblad

1 Earth’s Requiem. Print if in the U.S., an e-copy otherwise.

1 ebook copy Silent Oath (Book 2 of the Locked Within Trilogy) by Paul Anthony Shortt

1 Ebook: Five Golden Rings by Jeffe Kennedy from the Season of Seduction Carina Press erotic holiday anthology

1 eBook: An Unexpected Bride (The Bride Series, Book 1) by Shadonna Richards

1 eCopy of Divine Destiny by Joanna Grace

1 Ministry Protocol: Thrilling Tales of the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences

1 Ebook giveaway. "Beautiful Stranger" by Katalina Leon

1 ebook copy of Chasing the Star Garden by Melanie Karsak

1 ebook copy of Cleaning Up by Jophrael L Avario

1 One e-book copy of Haven by Celia Breslin

1 one e-book copy of Dragon Fire by Dina Von Lowenkraft

1 ebook copy of Hex and the Single Witch by Roxanne Rhoads

1 one kindle copy of Cassie Scot: ParaNormal Detective by Christine Amsden

1 One ecopy of Cursed Ever After by AC James

1 copy of The Miss Education of Dr. Exeter by Jillian Stone

1 ecopy of Catwalk:Messiah by Nick Kelly

1 ecopy of Wucaii by Pembroke Sinclair

1 ecopy of The Bottom Line by Shelley Munro

1 Ebook copy of Dangerous Pursuit by Margaret Daly

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Shadow of Samhain


Dreams, the Writer’s Playground


 

By Dawn Colclasure

There are so many things that can inspire a writer and so many sources of ideas for things to write. From books, newspaper articles, a line in a song or real-life experiences, a writer can pick and choose from a variety of sources to get ideas for things to write. Books have inspired ideas for short stories I’ve written, and curiosity about something inspired me to write an article on that very topic. I even once wrote a series of articles just because I was curious about something.

But my biggest source of inspiration – as well as my favorite one – are my dreams.

Sometimes I will have what I call a “story dream.” In these dreams, I am either a central character or an observer of the story happening. Sometimes the whole story will play out in the dream, or other times, a few scenes will happen in the dream and I’ll be so inspired by this story, I’ll put the pieces together, fill in the gaps, and bring that story to life as an actual story. I actually did this once with a short story I had accepted for publication in an anthology, a story about a haunted house called “The Old Coats House.”

On other occasions, the story will play out in entirety and I’ll wake up to write the whole thing. This happened with another short story I wrote called “Looking For You,” also published in an anthology.

Then there was the whopper of a dream story I had – a story that lasted for 15 years, in fact! Now it’s not often I’ll dream about the same person, even a man I don’t know, for 15 years. This made me reconsider the dreams, and that maybe they were not just dreams after all. Maybe they were something I really needed to pay attention to!

These dreams inspired me to write my novel, Shadow of Samhain. The man in my dreams, Jonathan, was not a Druid, but I turned him into one in the story in order to make the story work.

Dreams continue to fascinate and amaze me. Even today, after two decades since the very first dream of Jonathan, I am still interested in the subject of dreams. I like reading about dream symbols, dream analysis and interesting experiences people have had because of their dreams.

And, of course, I also enjoy looking to my dreams as a source of ideas for things to write. Who knows what I’ll end up dreaming about next ... and what my dream will inspire me to write? I can’t wait until I fall asleep again to find out – or, should I say, dream about!

 



BIO: Dawn Colclasure is a writer who lives in Oregon. Her articles, essays, poems and short stories have appeared in several newspapers, anthologies, magazines and E-zines. She is the author of fourteen books, among them BURNING THE MIDNIGHT OIL: How We Survive as Writing Parents; 365 TIPS FOR WRITERS: Inspiration, Writing Prompts and Beat The Block Tips to Turbo Charge Your Creativity; Love is Like a Rainbow: Poems of Love and Devotion and the children’s book The Yellow Rose. She is co-author of the book Totally Scared: The Complete Book on Haunted Houses. Her novel, Shadow of Samhain, was just published by Gypsy Shadow Publishing.

Visit her website at: http://dmcwriter.tripod.com/
 

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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Bad JuJu by Dina Rae







Do You Know Your Zombies? By Dina Rae

Voodoo and zombies were my biggest inspiration for writing Bad Juju.  A great deal of research went into the story.  Most of the plot is filled with authentic elements of Voodoo and zombies. For instance, the most common and believable zombie fact claims that one can turn into a zombie because of mental collapse, disease, infection, and/or radiation.  Zombies stagger around dazed and confused, causing others to panic. Then there is the man-made monster kind or the kind Hollywood and horror authors like me tend to capitalize on.

Zombie interest continues to fascinate the world. Jeffrey Dahmer drilled holes then poured acid down his victim’s heads in hopes of creating his own zombie. His madness didn’t work.

Can man make his own zombie? Are these monsters real?

According to Wade Davis, author of The Serpent of the Rainbow, zombies are real. They are a product of the Voodoo religion. He was originally hired by a pharmaceutical company to find out about the drugs Voduists used in their death rituals. He believed that datura also known as zombie’s cucumber was a plant that could medically make one who ingested it appear to be dead for a certain length of time.

Sounds like the stuff Juliet used to fake her death. Could Shakespeare known about the magical zombie-making plant?

Datura or sometimes Cimora, a close relative of Datura’s, eventually wears off but leaves the victim in a state of confusion, highly susceptible to the art of persuasion. Presto! A zombie slave is at the captor’s disposal. Mr. Davis didn’t just find his datura flower, but witnessed zombie phenomena as he immersed himself within the Haitian culture.

Bad Juju is a unique blend of horror, romance, and fantasy. Besides The Serpent and the Rainbow, I read volumes of other Voodoo material and watched hours of TV specials. Some of the terms I learned can be found below:

Bokor: A wizard who practices black magic, a zombie maker.

Loa: deity/spirit

Ghede Family: A family of loas known as the spirits of the dead. Three barons rule the family. Baron Samedi is the loa of resurrection. Baron Kriminel is the most feared loa associated with cannibalism and souls. He’s honored on The Day of the Dead. Baron LaCroix is the loa of the dead and sexuality.

Poppet: Voodoo doll

Ti-bon-ange: “little good angel” The part of the soul that represents a person’s individuality.

Gros-bon-ange: “great good angel” Part of the soul that is collected into a reservoir of the Cosmos or spirit world.

Baka: Voodoo spirits in animal form.

Loup Garou: werewolf

Djab: a devil

Dessounin: Death ritual that separates the gros-bon-ange from the body.

Bizango Society: Secret society of Vodouists. They have Freemason-like qualities such as aprons, secret handshakes, oaths, hierarchy, and symbols. Legend states they change into animals at will. They are known for stealing black cats and boiling them to death for Voodoo services. They drink each other’s blood from a human skull chalice.

Bad Juju is available on Amazon for 1.99


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Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Killer on the Road by Charles O' Keefe

Do you fancy a good Horror mixed with paranormal and romance? Charles O'Keefe has a new book called Killer on the Road part of the Newfoundland Vampire Series.




Title: Killer On The Road

Series: The Newfoundland Vampire

Author: Charles O’Keefe

Genre: Horror / Paranormal / Romance / Vampire


Formats Available In: All eBook formats and Print

Release Date: January, 2011

Blurb: Joseph O’Reily is still adjusting to the lifestyle and the dangers that come with being a new vampire. He and Cassandra recently fought to the death with Cassandra’s estranged husband John Snow, and now Joseph has experienced his first ménage a trios, as only a vampire can. As if all of this was not complicated enough, he and Cassandra have been tasked with hunting down and killing a rogue vampire, Donald Rathmore.

Another of John Snow’s creations, Donald is an evil misogynistic killer in his own right. Donald has no interest in avenging his creator’s death, but killing Cassandra is at the top of his list.

While Donald continues his murderous spree, Joseph and Cassandra always seem to be one step behind him. The chase is further complicated as they encounter other vampires and learn more about the mysterious nature of the Vampire Council and the coming war between good and evil.


Joseph is only now beginning to trust Cassandra, and this trust will be shaken when he discovers she has even more secrets than he imagined. Her idea of justice and morality is at complete odds with his own. Despite all his powers and growing skill, Joseph is tested physically as a vampire and emotionally by Cassandra. This time the answers and challenges may be too much for the young vampire to handle.

 


 


 


 



About Charles O’Keefe:

 

Charles O’Keefe lives in the beautiful province of Newfoundland, Canada, with his wife and two feline ‘children,’ Jude and Esther. He works as an I.T. support guy and enjoys many hobbies and activities that include writing, reading, watching fantasy/science-fiction movies and television shows, gaming, poker, walking, acting, martial arts and of course fantasizing about vampires.

He currently has two novels out, books 1 and 2 of "The Newfoundland Vampire" series.

 

 
 





Website

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Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Young Warlock by Mathew Bridle



Title: Young Warlock

 
Author: Mathew Bridle

Genre: YA Fantasy

Formats Available In: All eBook formats and Print

Release Date: 27th September 2013


 
 


 

About Mathew Bridle:

 

Mathew Bridle (born 1963) heralds from the south of England where he lives with his wife of 17 years and his three house monkeys (children). He began writing novels in the late 1990's with The Rising, an 80's style horror novel. A second novel quickly followed, 3 Phaze, a science fiction story set in the last days of the Earth. His third, Lagoon, inspired by the X-files is a sci-fi horror, brutal and sexual.


Nowadays he spends his time writing fantasy with Young Warlock as the first full instalment of this epic saga. When not writing he likes to relax with his Kindle, most likely reading either a classic fantasy or something from a new indie author. Either that or wrestling the controls for the Xbox from one of children.

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Thursday, September 26, 2013

A Ranger's Tale


Title: A Ranger's Tale
Series: Tallenmere
Author: Mysti Parker
Publisher: Melange Books
Formats Available in: All ebook formats and Print
Release Date: January, 2011


Blurb: In the fantasy world of Tallenmere, an elven noblewoman longed to leave her gilded cage.

A half-breed former pirate wanted nothing more than to escape his guilty past. Easier said than done...

High elf Caliphany Aranea leads an enviable life as King Leopold's niece and daughter of Sirius, Leogard's most famous wizard. Yet, being forced to follow in her father's footsteps and being betrothed to a man she doesn't even like makes her want a taste of life outside the city walls.
As a young boy, half-elf Galadin Trudeaux witnessed his parent's death at the hands of pirates. After being raised by those same murderers and forced to do their bidding, he escaped and now lives an honest life as a sea merchant and ranger.

When two brutes at Leogard Harbor attempt to kidnap Caliphany while she dreams of faraway lands, Galadin comes to her rescue. Impressed by his skills, she asks him to train her as a ranger. Though he is hesitant at first to train a woman of her class, Caliphany's hefty sack of gold finally persuades him. Unfortunately, her father is not amused, and the two must escape before Caliphany faces a forced marriage and Galadin faces a noose.

From that moment on she and Galadin embark on an adventure of a lifetime. Only if they can survive the trails ahead, will they find a love that stands the test of time.



 
Barnes & Noble



Excerpt:

Caliphany lowered her hood and smoothed out her robes. She smiled. I admit I’d held a vague hope we would cross each other’s paths again, but I’d also told myself a woman of her class and a man of mine had no business being seen with one another.

Even though I didn’t know who she was exactly, the clothes she wore told me she didn’t mingle regularly with us working classes. 

She tucked some hair behind her ear and blushed. “Captain Trudeaux.” 

I bowed. “My lady.” 

“Please don’t bow.” She avoided my gaze and clenched her robe. “You weren’t at the docks this morning. I thought you had gone.” 

Razor had started tearing into the rabbit, so I held up my finger. “One moment, please.” I knelt to retrieve him and the carcass before it was gone. 

Razor eyed Caliphany when I returned to her side. “I sent my men on to Faewood. They’ll be back by the week’s end. We had some Tilliyan coffee beans to deliver.”

Her shoulders slumped. “I’ve read a lot about Tilliya Island.” Her eyes focused somewhere in the distance, and then rested on me again. “So, you’re a falconer?” 

“I’m a ranger. Razor accompanies me from time to time. We sell what we hunt and gather. Sometimes I help thin out wildlife. It’s just my job.” 

The words rolled off her tongue. “A ranger.” 

I nodded, a bit annoyed she found my profession so curious. I killed things for a living. It was a hard, dirty job, one I was sure she could never understand. I cleared my throat. “I’m glad to see you’re in one piece, though still unescorted. Would you like me to walk you back to Leogard?” 

She held up a satchel. “I’m gathering plant specimens.” 

“As you wish. Well, good day then. I’ve got work to do.” I began to walk away. 

“Wait,” she said. 

I turned, and Caliphany approached me, opened her mouth, shut it again, and finally spoke. “I wanted to thank you for rescuing me.” 

If she was any other woman, from the lower end of society, I might have thought she was flirting. “You already did, I believe, and it’s not necessary. Good day.” I tried to walk away again. 

 “Wait.” 

Razor screeched and puffed his feathers when I turned back around. “Easy, now. Look, Caliphany, it’s really not necessary—” 

“I want you to train me.” 

I stepped closer. She blushed. I wrinkled my brow and asked, “Pardon?” 

The words tumbled from her mouth. “You know how to handle yourself, handle weapons. I want to learn that as well. Will you train me?” 

I puffed out my cheeks and exhaled. 

Should have known she wasn’t interested in me, just in what I could do for her. “I’m not sure what you think I am, my lady, but I’m no trainer. I’ve got work to do. Forgive me, but I can’t waste precious hours teaching you to handle a bow.” 

She reached into her cloak and pulled out a sack. From the jingle inside, I estimated a month’s wages in gold. She got my attention. 

“I’ll pay you. If this isn’t enough, I’ll pay more.” 

That definitely got my attention. “My men will have to take up the slack. I’ve got orders to fill. But, why would you want to do…” I pulled out a bloody, limp rabbit carcass. “…this?” 

“My reasons are personal. So, are you willing to train me or not?” 

I scratched my chin. “When can you start?” 

A smile flashed across her lips. “My father leaves for Mirrochet citadel in two days. He’ll be gone for a month. I can train with you every day for a few hours during that time. After that…” She frowned and turned her head, then met my eyes again. “After that, I don’t know. I can meet you at the ranger outpost just east of here. My family should not know about this.” 

Desperation settled in her eyes, and I had a strong urge to take her in my arms and kiss her until we both had to come up for air. But she stood waiting for my reply. 

“L-Look, I don’t know if I should be skirting trouble. Being caught out here in the woods with you wouldn’t look good for either of us.” 

She stepped a little closer, reached out as though she would touch me, but withdrew her hand. “Believe me; they would know it was my idea. And with my father gone, they don’t pay as much attention to my whereabouts. So, is it a deal?” 

She held out her sack of coin with one hand, and the other for me to shake. I took the gold and shook her hand. Her skin was warm and soft. Damn shame it would be to mar those pretty fingers.



About Mysti Parker:


Mysti Parker (pseudonym) is a full time wife, mother of three, and a writer. Her first novel, A Ranger's Tale was published in January, 2011 by Melange Books, and the second in the fantasy romance series, Serenya's Song, was published in April 2012. The highly anticipated third book, Hearts in Exile, has already received some great reviews. The Tallenmere series has been likened to Terry Goodkind's 'Sword of Truth' series, but is probably closer to a spicy cross between Tolkien and Mercedes Lackey.

Mysti's other writings have appeared in the anthologies Hearts of Tomorrow, Christmas Lites, and Christmas Lites II. Her flash fiction has appeared on the online magazine EveryDayFiction. She has also served as a class mentor in Writers Village University's six week free course, F2K. 

Mysti reviews books for SQ Magazine, an online specfic publication, and is the proud owner of Unwritten, a blog voted #3 for eCollegeFinder's Top Writing Blogs award. She resides in Buckner, KY with her husband and three children.

 
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Tallenmere Series:
A Ranger's Tale, Tallenmere #1
Serenya's Song, Tallenmere #2
Hearts in Exile, Tallenmere #3