Author Interview, Blogging, Book Love, writers life, writing

Six Goodbyes We Never Said Blog Tour and Q&A

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SIX GOODBYES WE NEVER SAID by Candace Ganger; on sale September 24, 2019

Two teens meet after tragedy and learn about love, loss, and letting go

Naima Rodriguez doesn’t want your patronizing sympathy as she grieves her father, her hero—a fallen Marine. She’ll hate you forever if you ask her to open up and remember him “as he was,” though that’s all her loving family wants her to do in order to manage her complex OCD and GAD. She’d rather everyone back the-eff off while she separates her Lucky Charms marshmallows into six, always six, Ziploc bags, while she avoids friends and people and living the life her father so desperately wanted for her. 

Dew respectfully requests a little more time to process the sudden loss of his parents. It’s causing an avalanche of secret anxieties, so he counts on his trusty voice recorder to convey the things he can’t otherwise say aloud. He could really use a friend to navigate a life swimming with pain and loss and all the lovely moments in between. And then he meets Naima and everything’s changed—just not in the way he, or she, expects. 

Candace Ganger’s Six Goodbyes We Never Said is no love story. If you ask Naima, it’s not even a like story. But it is a story about love and fear and how sometimes you need a little help to be brave enough to say goodbye.

Q&A

Loie: How long did it take you to write SIX GOODBYES WE NEVER SAID?

Candace: Oh, boy! Longer than I wanted! I’ve been writing this story, in some form for about four years!

 

Loie: Can you share what you’re working on at the moment?

Candace: An adult project…that’s all I can say 🙂

 

Loie: Are you a pantser, plotter, or a mix of the two?

Candace: I like to plot but often find myself in a situation I don’t love and then I’ll change it. So, probably a mix of both.

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About the Author:

Candace Ganger is the author of Six Goodbyes We Never Said and The Inevitable Collision of Birdie & Bash as well as a contributing writer for HelloGiggles and obsessive marathoner. Aside from having past lives as a singer, nanotechnology website editor, and world’s worst vacuum sales rep, she’s also ghostwritten hundreds of projects for companies, best-selling fiction and award-winning nonfiction authors alike. She lives in Ohio with her family.

 

Twitter: @candylandgang + @WednesdayBooks

 

Buy your copy here!

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Author Interview, Blogging, Book Love, writers life, writing

How to Love a Duke in Ten Days by Kerrigan Byrne Blog Tour

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How to Love a Duke in Ten Days by Kerrigan Byrne

These men are dark, bold, and brave. And there is only one woman who can bring them to their knees…

Famed and brilliant, Lady Alexandra Lane has always known how to look out for to herself. But nobody would ever expect that she has darkness in her past—one that she pays a blackmailer to keep buried. Now, with her family nearing bankruptcy, Alexandra strikes upon a solution: Get married to one of the empire’s most wealthy eligible bachelors. Even if he does have the reputation of a devil.

LOVE TAKES NO PRISONERS

Piers Gedrick Atherton, the Duke of Redmayne, is seeking revenge and the first step is securing a bride. Winning a lady’s hand is not so easy, however, for a man known as the Terror of Torcliff. Then, Alexandra enters his life like a bolt of lightning. When she proposes marriage, Piers knows that, like him, trouble haunts her footsteps. But her gentleness, sharp wit, independent nature, and incredible beauty awakens every fierce desire within him. He will do whatever it takes to keep her safe in his arms.

Author Bio

Kerrigan Byrne

Whether she’s writing about Celtic Druids, Victorian bad boys, or brash Irish FBI Agents, USA Today bestseller Kerrigan Byrne uses her borderline-obsessive passion for history, her extensive Celtic ancestry, and her love of Shakespeare in every book. She lives at the base of the Rocky Mountains with her handsome husband and three lovely teenage girls, but dreams of settling on the Pacific Coast. Her Victorian Rebels novels include The Highwayman and The Highlander.

How to Love a Duke in Ten Days Blog Tour Q&A

 

Q: What inspired you to write How to Love a Duke in Ten Days?

A:  I’ve always been one of those women who have enjoyed fierce female friendships. I think that soulmates, even for heterosexual women, can be just as necessary with other women as with men, and a real hero must not just love and respect you, but also your tribe. I wanted to write a series where historical heroines could truly have it all, education, dreams, businesses, wealth, genius, revenge, hot sex, AND true love. Where the sacrifices were made on their behalf instead by them, and where their heroes learn to lift them up in all ways, heal their pains, calm their fears, become their best friends, and protect them with what I hope is a great balance between alpha hotness and progressive sensitivity. 

 

 

Q: Is there one thing you would like readers to take away from this story?

A: That’s tough because I packed a lot in there! I would say the one thing from this book, specifically, is that happiness is attainable against the odds, even when overcoming the worst that people can do to one another. Even though I’m a grown up and a cynic, I still like to write books that remind me that true love conquers all, because that love can come from so many people. 

 

 

Q: Can you describe your typical day writing this book?

A: This book was especially difficult for me to write, so I spent a great deal of time in my bathrobe. I would get up, my fantastic husband would make me coffee, I’d call my critique partner and we’d do a bit of brainstorming, and I’d write and rewrite for hours, stress, cry, throw things, walk the dog, eat, snack, eat some more, facebook way too much, and then finish under word count, binge a tv show or a book until I stared at the ceiling into the wee hours. Oh, and there was drinking in there at regular intervals.

Glamorous, I know!

 

 

Q: Describe the hero and heroine of How to Love a Duke in Ten Days in three words each.

A: The Duke of Redmayne: Wary. Wounded. Wicked.

Lady Alexandra Lane: Brave. Brilliant. Beautiful.

 

 

Q: What is the one thing that the heroine, Alexandra, can’t live without?

A: She cannot live without her two dearest friends in the entire world, Miss Cecelia Teague, and Lady Francesca Cavendish. They literally buried a body for her, and would defend her to the death.

 

 

Q: What was your hardest scene to write in How to Love a Duke in Ten Days? Your favorite?

A: As with many (most) of my novels, the prologues are the hardest to write, and read, I suspect. Usually I take the characters to the very edge of their breaking point, often times pushing them over so they have what seems like insurmountable conflicts to overcome both internally and externally. So, for this book, Alexandra’s assault was the most difficult thing to get through, and boy did I enjoy being able to help Piers put her back together, because he was just the perfect hero for her. Tender, empathetic, a good sense of humor, and a large dose of protective alphaness.

 

 

Q: Why do you write historical romance? 

A:  I’ve always romanticized the past. I can’t help it. I love the pace and the aesthetic, the gowns and the suits and the manners and the manors. I love to do historical research and it’s so fun to see how much we are influenced by the past and how, even though so much has changed through the centuries, people really haven’t. Also, it’s fun to play with language, mystery, and sex in a time when a scandal was still possible. *wink.

 

 

Q: Is there another particular author that inspires you or that you enjoy reading? 

A: There is a LIST! I would say in historical romance, though, it’s always always Lisa Kleypas. She has a grasp on the characterization of historical folks that I can never hope to attain. I’m just in awe of her every word.

 

 

Q: Where do you go or what resources do you use to make sure your novels are historically correct? 

A: I love to find books about a time period at B&N or my local bookshops. I go to Harper’s Bazaar for fashion, and a slew of Victorian references for the time period. I do read blogs and sometimes consult with historians and experts.

 

 

Q: Did you learn anything surprising while researching for this novel?

A: Many things! I learned how truly difficult it was to attain an education as a woman as little as a hundred years ago. It’s really incredible how far we’ve come in a century. 

 

 

Q: What do you do when faced with writer’s block, if you ever are? 

A: Oh man. I often am. I usually try to shake it loose with a brainstorming conversation with a few friends I have who always seem to be able to unstick me. I rely heavily on the creativity of others as well as my own.

 

 

Q: How did you feel the first time you realized one of your books was a big success? 

A: I didn’t believe it. It seems surreal every time I truly realize that a story I wrote entertained another human. Let alone more than one. I’m like… they paid to read it? WHAT? 

 

 

Q: What’s next for the Devil You Know series? 

A: I’m especially excited for the next book ALL SCOT AND BOTHERED because it’s about Alexandra’s best friend the curvy vicar’s daughter, Cecelia Teague. She inherits London’s most infamous and successful brothel, and one imposing, surly Scottish enemy along with it. She and Lord Ramsay, the Lord Chief Justice with an axe to grind against her establishment, can’t be in a room together without the sparks flying. I can’t think about this book without smiling.

 

 

Q: Is there anything else you’d like to add?

A: I hope you enjoy this trio of roguish redheads as much as I enjoyed writing them!

Pick up your copy here!

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Blogging, Book Love, Preorders, writers life, writing

Gravemaidens by Kelly Coon

Hi everyone,

I’m part of Kell’s Skeleton Crew 🙂 Kelly’s YA fantasy inspired by ancient Sumer will be released on October 29th by Delacorte. Read more about the inspiration for her debut in an interview with The Book Bratz.

I will post my review in the coming weeks but let me tell you, Gravemaidens is incredible. I rooted for the MC, Kammani. She’s smart and an excellent healer’s apprentice.

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Goodreads Summary

The start of a fierce fantasy duology about three maidens who are chosen for their land’s greatest honor…and one girl determined to save her sister from the grave.

In the walled city-state of Alu, Kammani wants nothing more than to become the accomplished healer her father used to be before her family was cast out of their privileged life in shame.

When Alu’s ruler falls deathly ill, Kammani’s beautiful little sister, Nanaea, is chosen as one of three sacred maidens to join him in the afterlife. It’s an honor. A tradition. And Nanaea believes it is her chance to live an even grander life than the one that was stolen from her.

But Kammani sees the selection for what it really is—a death sentence.

Desperate to save her sister, Kammani schemes her way into the palace to heal the ruler. There she discovers more danger lurking in the sand-stone corridors than she could have ever imagined and that her own life—and heart—are at stake. But Kammani will stop at nothing to dig up the palace’s buried secrets even if it means sacrificing everything…including herself.

Preorder Info

I am so excited to share the link to all the amazing preorder goodies for Kelly’s book!

For all the details, check out her website. She has awesome treats for International readers, those who request Gravemaidens at their library, and an epic gift for US preorders. Hope you are having an amazing summer ❤

Until next time,

Loie xo

 

 

Blogging, Book Love, Giveaway, writers life, writing

LINEAGE Takeover Tour by C. Vonzale Lewis

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Synopsis

Smart-mouthed Nicole Fontane has a way of getting herself into trouble. She’s been fired from every job she’s had but still refuses to work in her father’s apothecary shop because of his practice of Earth Magick. On Tulare Island where Nicole grew up, Magick has always been a way of life—one she’s determined to avoid at all costs.

 

With less than two hundred dollars in the bank and rent due, Nicole is forced to take a job at Tribec Insurance as a last resort. Little does she realize, the moment she sets foot inside the building, she becomes a pawn. A sinister force has set its sights on her and will stop at nothing to use her in a sadistic game.

 

Tribec’s proprietors, the Stewart family, are curiously preoccupied with the Naqada, the mysterious pre-dynastic Egyptian society. Nicole finds it creepy, but on the bright side, the job reconnects her with her estranged friend, Marta. Yet the eerie atmosphere, disappearing Magick wards, and the smell of blood inside Tribec bring Nicole to a startling conclusion—the Stewarts are practicing Blood Magick, the deadliest of the Five Principles. By the time Nicole uncovers the truth, Marta and her four children have gone missing, and all signs implicate the Stewarts and an archaic blood ritual to an Old One, a Naqada god imprisoned on Tulare Island.

 

Battling the evil of Blood Magick will demand Nicole to confront a hidden past and unlock the Magick buried within. But can she set aside her deep-rooted fears to work with a team of vigilante Mages? Or will the clock run out on Marta and her children—and on Nicole?

Chapter One

Looking for bright, responsible, career-oriented, self-motivated individuals who have excellent people skills and are able to take high volumes of calls while maintaining a positive attitude. Ability to work with others is a must. 

I glanced down at the advertisement in my hand. I had none of those qualifications according to my last employer—and pretty much all my other previous ones as well. I was, however, a “foul-mouthed, bad-tempered, under-performing”—still didn’t understand that one—“sarcastic, waste of space.” Although, to be fair, only one of the previous employers actually called me a waste of space, and that was because I had stopped sleeping with him. 

This unfortunate lack of options was the reason I stood in the parking lot of Tribec Insurance, smoking the last of my apple-flavored cigars—a habit I learned from my father—wearing a cream-colored dress suit and a pair of matching pumps. I couldn’t afford either of them, and I really hated pumps. But I needed the job, so I dressed the part of the career-oriented, self-motivated candidate the ad was searching for. 

Most of the jobs in the area required a college degree, or at least several years of experience. I had no college degree, and the longest I’d ever been employed at one job was six months. Thankfully, Tribec Insurance was always hiring and had no such requirements—a rarity in the uptight community of Alice where Tribec was located.  

Through a ring of cigar smoke, I took in the phallic structure that was Tribec Insurance. My eyes landed on the small, stone, pyramid-like shape at the top of the building. It reminded me of an Egyptian Obelisk—a symbol to the god Ra. The Egyptian word for it, “Tejen,” meant “protection” or “defense.” 

Why would the occupants of Tribec Insurance erect a symbol of protection or defense on top of the building?  

A slight breeze blew over my bare arms, carrying the salty scent of the ocean and stirring the beads of sweat that had formed on them. My new blouse had molded to my back, and my feet had started to sweat. I was generally used to Tulare Island’s oppressive heat, but the anxious jitters in my stomach had caused my skin to flush. 

I tried to dispel the nervousness in my stomach. Despite the obvious, I didn’t want to show that I was desperate. My best friend Kara spent most of last night trying to prep me for the interview. She advised me to not ask annoying questions, make sarcastic comments, or let my disgruntled attitude show. 

Essentially, she advised me to not be myself. There was a message in there somewhere, but I was choosing to ignore it. 

Out of our original group in high school, Kara was the only one who was still in my life. The only one who actually gave a damn about me. Marta and I hadn’t spoken in years, and as for Steve… Well, it was a long time ago. 

I glanced at my watch. Damn. I guess I had procrastinated long enough. I put out my cigar, grabbed my blazer from the front seat of my car, shoved the advertisement back in my overly large purse, and headed for the building. As I walked, I attempted to wrap my head around the fact that I was essentially asking Tribec Insurance to let me spend my days chained to a desk, listening to complaints from strangers. 

Maybe I should look into prostitution. At least I’d enjoy the job. 

Kara also told me to smile a lot, so I pasted one on, pulled open the glass door, and stepped inside. Only to stop dead in my tracks at the entrance. 

The walls—painted a burnt gold color that reminded me of the sunset—were lined with Egyptian art. Four glass displays, filled with half-head replicas of deities and artifacts, sat in each corner of the room. Green foliage hung from black ceramic pots near the entrance and the elevator. Something was off about the elevator. It wasn’t stainless-steel. No, more like marble. Black marble with gold striations that, at first glance, appeared to be moving. Odd. 

And everything, including the guard station—which sat sunken into the foundation in the middle of the floor—was set up in a spherical configuration. Directly behind the guard station was a set of mahogany double doors, with gold Egyptian hieroglyphs carved around the frame. They were also etched around the guard station. 

Most people on Tulare Island either practiced one of the four principles of magick or knew someone who did. There was, however, a small group of people who, despite the evidence, still refused to believe in magick. They usually carried picket signs outside of herbal and occult shops, telling people they were going to burn in hell, not realizing they were actually practicing faith magick every time they went to church.

Judging from the set-up of the room, and even the obelisk on the top of the building outside, I could hazard a guess—more like an assumption—that the occupants of Tribec Insurance practiced magick. 

Despite my assumption, I couldn’t figure out which of the four principles—earth, elemental, mind, or faith—the people at Tribec used. There was, however, a fifth principle—blood—that to my knowledge, no one practiced anymore. And sadly, I didn’t know enough about it to recognize any symbols associated with its practice. Yet, symbols from the other four were etched all over the walls. Odd. Especially since people only had the ability to practice one. Not all four. 

If it was a job requirement for me to use magick, I was running the hell out of here. I would live in a cardboard box before I got involved with magick. And if I didn’t get a job soon, that was exactly where I’d be living. Especially since I refused to move back in with my parents. I had to grow the hell up sometime.

I moved farther into the lobby; the scent of desert sand wafted around me. It had that baked-on smell that emanated off the ground when the sun was at its peak. It was unusual, but the décor could explain the smell. Especially if they added sand to some of the displays for authenticity. The odor that was definitely out of place was the one directly underneath it.

Blood. It was faint. I could almost chalk it up to imagination. Almost. If it wasn’t so overpowering. 

I moved forward cautiously, my heels clicking on the white-tiled floor, as I tried to pinpoint where the scent was coming from. But the farther away from the door I got, the less I smelled it. I turned and started back toward where I’d first detected the smell. A chair creaked, stopping me in my tracks. The space between my shoulder blades started to itch. I turned.  

The guard behind the desk was watching me. 

I stood there, debating whether or not I should just leave. Yes, I was desperate, but the smell of blood? Was I imagining it? I pulled in a deep breath, trying to find the scent again. Nothing. 

Get it together, Nicole. 

After a short pause, I shook myself mentally, and continued toward the guard station with the guard’s black eyes boring into me. Sizing me up. 

“Can I help you, miss?” He rose to his feet and crossed his arms across his chest.  

I placed him in his late twenties. He had a solid frame, close-cropped black hair, deep set black eyes, and no facial hair. The dark brown suit he wore looked as if it had been poured onto him. Had to be ex-military. 

The gold tag on his shirt read “Oliver Strong.” It suited him. 

“Yes, my name is Nicole Fontane, and I’m here for an interview with…” I set my purse on the counter, ignoring his pointed glare, and pulled out my tattered notebook. “…a Francine Delaporte at eleven.” 

“Have a seat. I will call someone down to escort you.” He inclined his head in the direction of the red leather couch on the right.  

“Okay, thanks,” I said as I mentally extended my middle finger. Everything about him rubbed me the wrong damn way.  

I sat and placed my purse beside me on the couch—the damn thing weighed a ton—and picked up one of the brochures for Tribec Insurance. While I sat there leafing through it, another security guard walked up and blocked my view of the sun. Well, he would have if there had been one inside the building. This burly bastard had tree trunks for arms and a head that resembled a boulder. Did they chisel him from a mountain?   

“Ms. Fontane?” the guard grumbled. It sounded as if his voice came from a gut full of rocks.

 I stood, which put me at eye level to his massive chest and the name tag pinned to his shirt that read “Duncan Glass.”

Maybe when they hired their guards, they assigned them names as well. 

“Yes.” I tried to push myself up a few inches more. I was already wearing three-inch heels, bringing my total height to five nine, yet this massive behemoth still towered over me. 

“Follow me.” He spun around abruptly and led the way to the elevator. 

I was tempted to salute him, or give him the finger—the damn bossy bastard. 

Calm down, Nicole. You need this job. 

Duncan pulled a card from his pocket and inserted it into a slot located on the right side. I guess that answered my question about the oddity of the elevator. Besides the strange composition, they didn’t have a call button. They sure did have a high level of security for an insurance company. Maybe they denied more claims than they approved. Greedy bastards. 

When the doors slid open, Duncan extended his arm out. “Ms. Fontane.” 

I stepped inside. 

Once the doors were closed, he inserted his card into another slot, and a display lit up with a list of floors. 

The number thirteen was among them.

I had once read somewhere that all older buildings either omitted the thirteenth floor or renamed it. It all stemmed from a superstition that the thirteenth floor was unlucky. I wasn’t superstitious, but I did find it interesting they chose to include it. 

“They have a thirteenth floor,” I said.  

“It comes after twelve.”

While I was no stranger to snide comments I really didn’t like others using them on me. Bastard.  

A few moments later, the elevator doors opened and, thankfully, deposited us on the seventeenth floor. I followed Duncan to a set of offices in the center of the floor. He stopped at the first door in a row of three that faced the elevators. The silver name plate affixed to it read: Francine Delaporte. After he rapped on it three times, he planted his feet a few inches apart and placed his hands behind his back. 

Maybe Duncan thought he was still in the military.  

I took in the room while I waited. Cameras inside small black orbs dotted the ceiling. A hazy gray tint covered the windows, allowing minimal light to filter into the room. Industrial gray walls sported a few framed “inspirational” quotes that referred to “teamwork” and “having a positive attitude.” They even had the stupid “Hang in There” poster with a cat hanging off a wire.

Even the partitions that divided the employees’ desks were gray. The only break up in the ashen color were the fake wood desks. 

It reminded me of a mental asylum. 

The majority of the people in the office were women, with a few men thrown in here and there. Did they believe women were more suited to talking on the phone? Either way, everyone in the room was pasty, their eyes sunken in, wearing expressions that suggested they had given up on life. I wouldn’t have been surprised if they were all former tenants of the asylum, dressed up in over-sized clothes and forced into the role of “employee.” 

The fact that no one looked up when Duncan and I got off the elevator supported my theory. They just sat there in their little black chairs, talking into their headsets, all repeating what sounded like the same practiced spiel in monotonous tones, a few minutes behind one another. Like a rolling set of waves crashing against the most boring shore imaginable. 

I turned back to Duncan. He still stood at ease in front of Francine Delaporte’s door. What the hell was taking this woman so long? My feet were killing me. Like an idiot, instead of breaking the shoes in after Kara left last night, I had curled up on the couch with a bottle of Samuel Adams, contemplating my limited options. My little pity party of one ended at midnight when I realized my only option was one I wasn’t willing to entertain.  

As I switched my purse from my right shoulder to my left, I caught sight of a faint circular line drawn around the cubicles. I stared at the ground, unsure if I was seeing things, or if there really was a line drawn on the floor. I straightened and moved to the left, trying to follow it. As I stood there transfixed, someone brushed their frigid hand across my exposed neck.

Coldness raced down my spine, and the scent of sand filled my nostrils.   

I whipped around. 

Duncan was gone. 

In his place stood a woman wearing a red paint suit. Given that she was at least five feet away from me with her hands down at her sides… Who the hell had touched my neck? 

Francine extended her hand and smiled. “Hello. Ms. Fontane?”

I stepped forward, my legs suddenly weak, and took her hand. “Hi.” I cleared my throat. “Yes, I’m Nicole Fontane.”

“I’m Francine Delaporte. Let’s get started.”  She let go of my hand and walked into her office. 

I rubbed the back of my neck, trying to warm the sudden chill that had settled there. I glanced around the room. The employees remained at their desks, staring rapt at their computer screens. 

A cool breeze circled the room, pulling my gaze toward the ceiling. An air vent sat directly above me.  

Before I entered Francine’s office, I glanced down at the floor. The markings were gone. Maybe I had imagined them. And maybe the air-conditioning explained the feeling of someone brushing their fingers across my neck.

Yes—for sanity’s sake, I was going to go with that. 

Just my overactive imagination. 

Tour Wide Giveaway

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Prize:

  • Paperback Signed copy of Lineage & Book Swag (US Only)

  • Lineage E-Book

  • To enter:

  • – Must be following  @theparliamentpress and @carlavlewis

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/bed2728519/

Rules:
-No giveaway accounts
-Must be 18 + or have parents consent

-Must be able to provide an email for the E-Book.

This giveaway is in no way affiliated with Instagram or any other company.

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Author Carla V. Lewis

Author – Instagram: (carlavlewis)

Facebook: (CVLauthor)

Twitter: (cvonzalelewis)

Website: (www.cvonzalelewis.com)

Publisher

Instagram: (@theparliamentpress) Twitter: @parliamentbooks

Facebook: The Parliament House

Author Interview, Blogging, Book Love, Giveaway, writers life, writing

Collateral Damage by Taylor Simonds TAKEOVER TOUR

Collateral Damage by Taylor Simonds

Publisher: The Parliament House

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Book Synopsis

Power. Courage. Invincibility. The marks of a true hero.

 

Meg Sawyer has none of these things.

 

Meg has never stopped a moving bus with her bare hands, been bitten by a radioactive insect, or done anything moderately resembling saving the world. She doesn’t have to. She’s a background citizen, a nobody, one of the swarms of faceless civilians of Lunar City–where genetically enhanced superhumans straight out of the comics have thwarted evil for years.

 

For as long as the Supers have existed, Meg has had one goal: to not become a casualty in their near-daily battles for justice. And for the last seventeen years, she’s managed to do just that. Sure, her minimum-wage job at the local coffee shop isn’t great, she can’t even leave her apartment without loading herself up with protective gear, and her car was just hijacked to throw at a supervillain (again), but she’s not dead yet.

 

But when Meg accidentally finds one of the city’s perfect, invincible protectors murdered under extremely suspicious circumstances, her whole “innocent bystander” strategy falls apart. After being coerced by his determined girlfriend into a mission to help prevent the deaths of the remaining Supers, Meg finds herself forced into the foreground of a story she never wanted to be part of—one that challenges everything she thought she knew about both her city and herself.

Pick up your copy today 🙂

Author Taylor Simonds

Author – Instagram: (@taylor_on_tour),  Twitter: (tay_simonds),

Visit her website!

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Q&A with Taylor Simonds

  1. Q: Tell us about your writing process and the way you brainstorm story ideas.

 

A: I don’t know if two books is enough to supply a scientifically justifiable pattern, but pretending it is, here’s the process: 

1) A book premise and ending drop themselves into my head fully formed. I know who my characters are and where they’re going and I have no idea how they’re going to get there. 

2) I pants. I write without an outline. It is bad. “The first draft is telling the story to yourself!” I scream at myself as I write many, many bad words that I know I will delete later. 

3) Somewhere around the 40,000-word mark, I realize that I have made a crucial error in developing one of my lead characters. That personality isn’t right at all. I have to fix it. Wait, I need to change the opening scene to match the characterization I actually want them to have. Wait, none of these characters are right. This worldbuilding is so half-baked. This would make a much better inciting incident. What am I doing? 

4) I move all 40,000 words to a file labeled “WIP Dumping Grounds” and start over from scratch. 

5) I do this three more times until I have 40,000 words I don’t hate and then I finish the book, still screaming.

 

  1. Q: When you develop characters do you already know who they are before you begin writing or do you let them develop as you go?

 

A: I have to know who my characters are before I start writing, or the story will never get written—I’m the world’s worst pantser, so all I ever know going into a book is who my book is about and where they’re trying to get to. For COLLATERAL DAMAGE I had a set of references for each character to use as a template for if I got stuck (Meg was Mia Thermopolis x Veronica Sawyer x Darcy Lewis x Haruhi Fujioka, for example, mixed with a few friends I know in real life). I feel like if I can understand my characters on as many levels as possible—what they want, what they fear, what they’re trying to accomplish, who or what raised them, how they connect to others, how they talk and move—they’ll become as familiar to me as real people. And if I let them act like real people, they’ll naturally make choices that create the plot.

 

  1. Q: Where is your favorite place to write?

A: DISNEY WORLD RESORTS. I’m so lucky that I live so close to them. I work from home as an editor most of the time and if I had to stay in my bedroom all day I’d go crazy, so my favorite thing to do is go work at one of the themed hotels. It makes me feel like I’m on vacation, and it’s so easy to be inspired when every aspect of the Disney brand relies so heavily on thematic storytelling. My top three spots are Beach Club, which makes me feel like I’m on a cruise ship, Wilderness Lodge, which makes me feel like I’m on a writing retreat in the woods, and the Grand Floridian, which is just fancy.

 

  1. Q: Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find?

 

A: Yes! COLLATERAL DAMAGE is a play on the superhero genre, which I’m a huge fan of, so there are Easter eggs and references all over the place. No real names or exact details are used, of course, but they’re clear enough for a potential fellow nerd to be like “Wait, this feels like Spider-Man. That’s a Flash joke. That thing covered in gemstones they just walked past in the vault is totally the Infinity Gauntlet.” Stuff like that.

 

  1. Q: Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?

 

A: I prefer each book to stand on its own! One of my favorite concepts is “leave the reader wanting more, not needing more.” I’m an advocate for letting books work on their own as a self-contained unit; I don’t like it when a story ends with all of its ends still loose. I shouldn’t have to buy another book to know how the first book’s conflict wraps up! I think of it as a TV series—you know how each season typically has a central theme, antagonist, character arc, collection of new characters, etc.? By the end of the season, almost everything that has been presented should have reached a conclusion—but then the last episode will hit you with a tease that there’s more to come, like the camera shift to the looming Upside-Down after the school dance scene at the end of Stranger Things. I prefer books in a series to work in the same way—when a reader picks up a book, they’re being invited on a journey, and it’s unfair to the reader to cut that journey short. Without giving anything away from the end of COLLATERAL DAMAGE, there is definitely room for a sequel eventually because it’s superheroes, but I don’t think anyone would feel confused or infuriated if this was the only book in this world that ever got written. I like to put bows on things!

Publisher

Instagram: (@theparliamentpress) Twitter: @parliamentbooks

Facebook: The Parliament House

Tour Wide Giveaway

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Prize:

  • US ONLY: Paperback copy of Collateral Damage

  • INTERNATIONAL: Collateral Damage E-Book!

  • To enter:
  • – Must be following @theparliamentpress and @taylor_on_tour

– Go to @theparliamentpress and click on the link in their bio to enter.

For 1 extra entry share the giveaway image (swipe to see giveaway image) in your IG story and tag author and publisher.

Rules:
-No giveaway accounts
-Must be 18 + or have parents consent

-Must be able to provide an email for the E-Book

This giveaway is in no way affiliated with Instagram or any other company.

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Blogging, Book Love, canadian authors, Cover Reveals, writers life, writing

Heart of Flames by Nicki Pau Preto Cover Reveal

Hi everyone,

I wanted to share this gorgeous cover for Nicki Pau Preto’s upcoming novel, Heart of Flames! Isn’t it lovely? It is the sequel to Crown of Feathers. Check out the synopsis for this book below. Kekai Kotaki is the artist behind this amazing cover 🙂

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Synopsis from Goodreads

Veronyka, Tristan, and Sev must stop the advancing empire from destroying the Phoenix Riders in this fiery sequel to Crown of Feathers, which #1 New York Times bestselling author Kendare Blake calls “absolutely unforgettable!”

You are a daughter of queens.

The world is balanced on the edge of a knife, and war is almost certain between the empire and the Phoenix Riders.

Like Nefyra before you, your life will be a trial by fire.

Veronyka finally got her wish to join the Riders, but while she’s supposed to be in training, all she really wants to do is fly out to defend the villages of Pyra from the advancing empire. Tristan has been promoted to Master Rider, but he has very different ideas about the best way to protect their people than his father, the commander. Sev has been sent to spy on the empire, but maintaining his cover may force him to fight on the wrong side of the war. And Veronyka’s sister, Val, is determined to regain the empire she lost—even if it means inciting the war herself.

Such is your inheritance. A name. A legacy. An empire in ruin.

As tensions reach a boiling point, the characters all find themselves drawn together into a fight that will shape the course of the empire—and determine the future of the Phoenix Riders. Each must decide how far they’re willing to go—and what they’re willing to lose in the process.

I pray you are able to pass through the flames.

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Can’t wait for this book 🙂 It releases in February 2020. I’m part of Nicki’s street team, First Riders. It’s been a blast connecting with fellow book lovers. ❤ Happy reading, everyone!

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Author Interview, Blogging, Book Love, fairy tales, Giveaway, writers life, writing

Hook & Crown by Nicole Knapp TAKEOVER TOUR

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Publisher: The Parliament House

Book Title: Hook & Crown

Q & A with Author Nicole Knapp

Q: Who are your favorite authors?

A: My all time favorite authors are Sarah J Maas, Tahereh Mafi, Stephanie Garber and J.K. Rowling

Q: What authors did you dislike at first but grew into?

A: Rowling I used to really dislike the Bronte sisters, but as I read their novels again at an older age I really enjoy them now.

Q: What is the first book that made you cry?

A: The Fault In Our Stars, I was a mess reading it.

Q: Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?

A: I would much rather be original than cater to a specific audience. I want to gain my own readers by standing apart from the crowd.

Q: Tell us about your writing process and the way you brainstorm story ideas.

A: Honestly, my writing process is a mess. I jot down random ideas all the time and mull them over until inspiration strikes, then I take it from there. I tend to end up with a lot of not finished writing projects.

Q: Out of the protagonists you’ve written about so far, which one do you feel you relate to the most?

A: I really relate to Elena from Hook & Crown. A girl trying to find her place, sick of relying on relationships to make her happy, but a hopeless romantic deep down. I put a little of myself into all of my heroines.

Q: When you develop characters do you already know who they are before you begin writing or do you let them develop as you go?

A: Typically I have a good idea of who I want them to be, but as I write, and the story takes shape, the characters do change a bit. I like to start off with a good base of who they are and let them grow like a real person. I feel that makes them more real and relatable.

Q: What’s your favorite under-appreciated novel?

A: Fallen by Lauren Kate or Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick. Those series don’t get enough love and are great books!

Q: What is your favorite childhood book?

A: Peter Pan, of course!

Q: Have you ever gotten reader’s block?

A: Absolutely! I go through times when I read 3 books in a week, and other times where I won’t touch a book for months. It’s a vicious cycle.

Q: Where is your favorite place to write?

A: I like to write on my couch, in the middle of the night. That’s when I do my best work.

Q: What’s the most difficult thing about writing characters from the opposite sex?

A: Writing a male character is definitely tough! The hardest part is writing from their POV because I truly don’t know how they think sometimes, and I don’t want them to sound too feminine.

Q: How do you select the names of your characters?

A: I keep a list of names that I like, and I pick from that.

Q: Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find?

A: I love using bits of my real life in my writing, or bits from conversations I’ve had with people in real life as dialogue in my stories. The only people who would ever notice are the ones who were there for the event or conversation.

Q: What was your hardest scene to write (without giving spoilers of course)?

A: The scene inside Skull Rock in Hook & Crown! It took me forever to get it just right. Switching between the three characters POVs and making the timing of all three line up was tough! Plus it is a major scene in the book and it needed to be perfect.

Q: Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?

A: I would love for my books to connect to each other! Obviously, not ever single book I wrote, but the current ones I’m working on, yes.

Q: As a writer, what would you choose as your mascot/avatar?

A: A cat for sure! Loves naps and lounging in the sun, kind of a jerk sometimes, and nocturnal. Me all the way!

Q: If you could tell your younger writing self-anything, what would it be?

A: Start writing seriously sooner.

Q: How many hours a day do you write?

A: At least 3, mostly at night, but also throughout the day. Sometimes as much as 8 hours a day on a good writing day.

Q: How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?

A: Too many!

Author Nicole Knapp

Author Headshot (1)

Author – Instagram (@author.nicole.knapp)

 

Publisher

Instagram: (@theparliamentpress) Twitter: @parliamentbooks

Facebook: The Parliament House

Giveaway

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Prize:

– US ONLY Winner – Set of four Hook & Crown inspired candles from Talking Candles and Hook & Crown E-Book.

 

-International Winner – Hook & Crown E-Book!

To enter:

– Must be following @theparliamentpress @author.nicole.knapp

For an additional entry follow @talkingcandles

– Go to @theparliamentpress and click on the link in their bio to enter.

For 1 extra entry share the giveaway image (swipe to see giveaway image) in your IG story and tag author and publisher.

Rules:
-No giveaway accounts
-Must be 18 + or have parents consent

-Must be able to provide an email for the E-book

This giveaway is in no way affiliated with Instagram or any other company.

Enter here.

Book Synopsis

You’ve heard of Neverland and its inhabitants… Fairies, pirates, mermaids and a boy who didn’t want to grow up. But you can’t always believe the stories.

 

Elena Hart arrives in London, bound for a new boarding school operated by her estranged uncle. A fresh start is exactly what she needs. But when strange things begin happening, things she can’t explain, she begins to wonder if she has lost her mind.

Until the night a strange girl appears in her room, claiming to be a fairy from Neverland, come to take her to the fantasy world at the request of its ruler.

Skeptical, Elena refuses. But the following night, a young man with strange green eyes appears, and though she tries to resist his charms, something about him draws her in and Elena is whisked away from the world she knows, to a world she always thought was make believe.

But when she arrives in Neverland, it is nothing like the stories and Elena realizes that she must figure out for herself who the true heroes and villains are.

Pick up this book here 🙂

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