Wednesday, August 31, 2016

PROMO: A Powerful Voice #excerpt

Contemporary Christian Romance/ Women’s Fiction
Date Published: Jun 10th (digital) / Aug. 9th (print/POD)
Publisher: Anaiah Romance

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Gloria Fielder is trying her best to live with sincere faith, but regret for a past decision makes it difficult to live with herself.
Justin Case knows first-hand the consequences of bad choices, but he doesn’t believe in burying past mistakes. He openly shares his testimony with the purpose of showing there is hope and freedom for those who come to Christ.
Justin is the new worship leader for the church service Gloria attends, and he also leads a new Bible study she knows will help her. To complicate matters, once Justin becomes aware of Gloria’s struggle, he seems intent on drawing her out of her self-imposed shell of guilt and regret. If she trusts him with her secret and her heart, will their friendship evolve into something more, or will it simply be her undoing?


© 2016 Penelope Powell
Chapter One
Time heals all wounds…unless you deserve to suffer.
When the thought from her internal mantra struck, Gloria Fielder froze mid-step. As if punctuating the accusation, an icy wind howled, the force of it wrenching the glass door from her grasp and slamming it against the stopper.
“A few more minutes and you would’ve missed us entirely.”
Gloria looked up into the unsmiling face of a rail-thin woman standing sentinel over a group of children. Gloria assumed she was the children’s director, as they were all dressed in the festive colors of Christmas, their bright reds and deep greens reminding her of the candlelight service in progress.
She hesitated, her gaze shifting to the plaster nativity figures less than ten feet away, the babe in particular so…lifelike. Would it be better to leave and apologize later for having missed the program?
“Could you shut the door please? It’s hard to keep everyone’s attention while a draft is blowing through, and it’s almost time for us to begin.” Seeming to barely hang on to her patience, the director’s smile was as tight as her collar.
Being late was bad enough, but being made to feel like she was an annoying interruption was well…worse. Gloria shifted to close the door.
After an inquisitive glance toward Gloria, a chubby boy with flushed cheeks pulled on the director’s sleeve. “Mrs. Parker, when do we get our candles?”
“Patience, Tommy. We need to wait for the lady to go inside the auditorium, don’t we?”
Glancing from the boy to Mrs. Parker, Gloria apologized.
“That’s all right. We’re happy to wait for you to get settled.” Mrs. Parker’s smile stretched.
Gloria glanced back toward the woman, wondering if she meant what she said. She’d grown up in a house where a smile often held duplicity. Committed to stay, she hurried toward the partition crammed with winter coats. She unfurled the red scarf from her neck, then squished it and her coat into the mix.
Hushed giggles drew her gaze back to the director, who was busy giving each child a candle with detailed instructions. Everything about them seemed to contrast her. Was it just last year she wore red, putting on a good front? She wasn’t interested in being that person anymore. The clingy dress and all it represented was exiled to the corner of her closet. Proof she was different.
The past few weeks had been particularly hard. When something like seeing the babe in the manger shook her confidence instead of giving her hope, she questioned her faith as a believer in Christ. The possibility of seeing someone at this service she’d rather avoid tightened her chest with further worry.
“Ma’am, they’re waiting for us to start.” Apparently losing her patience, Mrs. Parker nodded toward the doors going into the auditorium.
Gloria tamped down her misgivings, straightened her shoulders, and walked toward the sanctuary. As she edged around the children to reach for one of the doors, a little girl dressed in an evergreen velvet dress took a candle from a basket and offered it to her.
“Thank you.” Gloria smiled.
The girl’s pink lips curved in reply.
Suddenly, blinking back the unwelcome pressure of tears, she turned and eased through the doors. Assailed by the scent of melting wax and pine, she waited for her eyesight to adjust to the soft glow of dimmed lighting, giving her a chance to scan the room for empty seats.
Soon an usher stood next to her, his face brightening when he smiled. “Is anyone joining you?” His generous teeth gleamed in the darkness.
Just me. She shook her head.
He motioned for her to follow him, then pointed to some empty chairs. As she made a beeline for them, his parting greeting followed. “Merry Christmas.”
Gloria glanced over her shoulder and forced a smile. She wanted to be merry. Wanted to simply feel peace. Wanted a reprieve from the recording in her head. Some days, the indictment playing over and over—tightening the tendrils of regret—putting her back on the treadmill of if-only. Making forgetting impossible.
If time was linear, and the passing of it promised things would get easier, then why hadn’t the grip of shame and sorrow weakened?
She settled into a chair as the children from the lobby entered and dispersed down the center aisle, the sound of their voices rising as they moved toward the front, their song offering her a distraction from her turmoil. With a deep breath, she closed her eyes and tried to escape into the words.
Joy to the World. A feeling she had yet to muster.
After several carols and a reenactment of the birth of Christ, the pastor walked up on the stage.
Bobby Jordan had thinning gray hair, a solid middle-aged build, and the demeanor and voice of an authoritative grandfather. But that was her opinion now that she knew him. Their first meeting was at her office. His friendly and forthright manner reminded her of the old Southern gentlemen at home. He explained he was a pastor hoping to refer church members who were house hunting, said a friend had recommended her.
Her peace of mind wavered at the memory. Fortunately, the uncomfortable connection led to providential results. If she had not been going through such a rough time, and if Bobby had not sought her out, she might never have begun a relationship with Christ. If only she could find a way to reconcile how the two connected without all the bad stuff. She rubbed her forehead.
“Thank you children, you may join your parents,” Bobby said.
Gloria glanced up as Bobby laid a hand on the shoulder of a little boy after dismissing the others to finds their seats.
“This is Johnny, one of our shepherds in tonight’s program. He’s seven. I asked Johnny a question earlier, and I wanted you to hear his response.” Bobby crouched down. “Johnny, what’s Christmas all about?” He tilted a microphone toward Johnny.
“Pweth-sents.” The boy turned toward the audience and smiled, the gap in his front teeth sparking chuckles from the crowd.
“What’s so great about presents?”
“They’we fwee.”
Bobby ruffled Johnny’s hair and told him to join his parents. When the laughter trickling through the congregation died down, Bobby stood at the edge of the platform. “Each Christmas, we decorate our homes with nativity scenes and our Christmas trees with lights.”
Gloria swallowed, the nativity from the lobby edging back into her thoughts.
“We send cards, sing carols, and we exchange gifts.” Eyes down, Bobby paused. “I agree with Johnny. Big or small, presents are special, but are they truly free? Certainly, they’re free to the recipients, but to the giver there is always a cost.” Bobby raised his arms. “But to each one of us, grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift. Paul wrote this to the Ephesians. God’s gift of grace. Undeserved favor for us.”
Undeserved. That was certainly her. She’d never measured up to expectations, which was one of the reasons why she worked so hard at her job.
“As recipients, God’s gift of grace costs us nothing because Jesus paid for it. He gave his life, so we might receive forgiveness. Receive life. In this season of giving, in addition to the wrapped packages we place under our trees, let’s give grace to one another. Offer forgiveness when needed, even underserved.” Then Bobby prayed.
As before, the children assembled across the front. Once their candles were lit, they disbursed down each aisle, lighting the candles of people sitting on the end as they went. Music played in the background.
Eyes closed, Gloria focused on Bobby’s words. She prayed the message would wash over her. Because there was hope in knowing Christ had already forgiven her. And she could do the same.
“Excuse me.”
Startled from someone’s touch, Gloria slapped a hand to her chest.
A man barely visible, given the darkness and shadows cast by candlelight, leaned closer. “Sorry to disturb you, but I thought you might want to light your candle.” Highlighting his explanation, he lifted his candle. For one brief moment, a striking, masculine face with eyes so dark they glittered like pools in moonlight stared back at her.
She swallowed, her heart still pounding from having been disturbed. “Sorry.” She fumbled for the candle amongst her things. Finding it, she held it toward him and tilted her wick toward his flame. A cool, woodsy scent wafted toward her, reminiscent of an autumn breeze. She inhaled the refreshing smell and relaxed a bit.
When her candle was lit, the flare illuminated his face once more. He looked up and caught her staring. Embarrassed, she turned away. “Thanks.”
“No problem.”
When the lights came up, she hit the aisle, determined to get through the lobby then home. The last thing she wanted to do was linger. Not that she didn’t enjoy talking with people afterward, but tonight she felt fragile.

About the Author

Though her roots are buried deep in the hills of Middle Tennessee, she now lives in Indiana with her family and serves in her local church. She loves to entertain, give life to old things, antiquing, reading and of course writing.
Like the things we experience, I believe good Christian fiction can inspire and change someone’s perspective, and hopefully point them to Christ.

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Monday, August 29, 2016

Cover Reveal: The Marked One

The Marked One
(The Marked Series, #1)
Published by: Limitless Publishing
Publication date: September 13th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
All Aaliyah had ever wanted was to be invisible…
To not be stared at. To not have to display her lifelong pain everywhere she goes. But society is too blind to see that beauty lies beneath the skin.
Aaliyah only reveals her special mark—a facial birthmark—to the closest people in her life. But when Aaliyah’s friend paints her in a portrait titled The Marked One?, her birthmark is exposed to the world. Now no amount of makeup can keep Aaliyah’s secret.
Tristan Gerardo appears to be a successful CEO, but he is hiding many secrets…
What many don’t realize is that his successful public persona is a mask for his own pain—both of losing a sibling, and his failed marriage.
Tristan buys a portrait called The Marked One?, and is shocked when the subject of the portrait arrives for an interview at his company. He pursues Aaliyah, and while she is cautious at first, she feels an ease around Tristan that she’s never experienced before.
Little by little, Tristan’s secrets are exposed…
While Tristan struggles to keep Aaliyah from finding out how his sister died, she discovers he is still married. He assures her she has his full loyalty and the divorce is just a matter of time, and she desperately wants to believe him. But his estranged wife re-enters his life, and Tristan must figure out how to convince Aaliyah that she means the world to him.
How can Tristan make Aaliyah realize that he loves her for herself, and not because of her notoriety as The Marked One?
Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000447_00006]
**Designed by Deranged Doctor Design**

Author Bio:
Chevoque was born as Rochelle de Beer on 15 May 1992 in Klerksdorp, South Africa, and as an only child, the world seemed like a lonely place, until she set her mind free and got lost in the worlds she created for herself. Her writing began at a young age and with numerous stories still waiting to be released from her mind, only time now seems to hold her back. She also has a degree in BSc. Environmental and Biological Sciences, because she's a tree hugging animal lover, who hopes to never use her degree to cause cruelty.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Release Day: Dance With Me by @hazelhugheser #excerpt #giveaway

release day blitz
Book Title: Dance with Me Author: Hazel Hughes Genre: Contemporary Romantic Suspense Release Date: July 26, 2016 Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions
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book blurb
When reporter Sherry Wilson-Wong wakes up in bed with ballet bad-boy Alexi Davydenko, she knows she’s crossed the line. But the dancer with the body of Apollo and the panty-removing stare wasn’t talking, so what choice did she have? Playing his little drinking game – a shot and a kiss for every answer - seemed like the perfect way to loosen his sexy lips. She gets her story, he gets his fun, win-win. But his answers only lead to more questions. And Alexi wants more than fun. Investigating into the ballet company’s shadowy secrets, Sherry learns that the beauty on stage masks ugly dealings, some of which seem to bear Alexi’s signature. But the more truths she exposes, the more lies she is forced to tell herself. That digging up dirt on a company with ties to the Russian mob isn’t dangerous. That licking every inch of Alexi’s naked body while hunting down evidence of his guilt isn’t a conflict of interest. That with each touch, each kiss, she isn’t falling deeper in love with the very man who could destroy her.
Alexi put his mug down and stood in front of her, tilting her face up with one hand. “Yes, I must rehearse, and yes, you must write. But there is no need to run away like a scared little girl from the wolf.” He bent down to kiss her. Sherry wanted that kiss more than she wanted her Venti skim latte, and with her throbbing head, that was a lot. But she put her hand on his bare chest, stopping him. He looked at her, confusion dawning in his eyes, followed quickly by hurt. He stepped back. “Oh. I see. You have your story now.” His voice was cold. “It’s not like that,” she said. Was this just a case of bruised ego, or was he genuinely hurt? She flashed back to what the bartender said about the type of girls Alexi normally brought to the bar. Party girls, he said. “So what is it like?” He turned away from her, looking out the window. She reached out a hand to put it on his shoulder, the one with the tattoo of Tolstoy’s face on it, but thought better of it. “Look, Alexi. I’ve already crossed more ethical boundaries than I’m comfortable with.” “To get your story.” His voice was flat, his arms crossed over his chest. “Hey, it’s my job to get the story. I came ready to interview you like I interview all my subjects. The vodka, the kisses, that was your game.” He turned suddenly, his green gaze pinning her. She couldn’t look away. “You didn’t want to play?” “No. I mean, yes. I did…” she started. He moved closer to her, his hand cupping her jaw. “I know you did. I think you still want to,” he whispered, his breath warm on her cheek. His lips touched hers, softly at first, questioning. When she parted her lips in response, he opened them wider, reaching for her tongue with his. Liquid. Melting. From her mouth all the way down to her softest, most private parts. He pulled back slightly. “Do you want to play, Sherry?” She was having a hard time regulating her breath. He was so close. She put her hands on his chest, but not to hold him back. She ran her hands over his chest, nipples hard under her palm, then down over the ridges of his abs. She hooked her fingers into his waistband pulling him toward her in response to his question. She wanted to play any game he had in mind as long as it involved what was under his pants, ethics be damned. “Yes,” she said.
Sherry kicked back at him, landing a blow to his shin, but he just tightened his grip and bit her ear, hard.
His lips touched hers.
meet the author
Hazel Hughes is a contemporary erotic romance writer and urban nomad. Born in London, Hazel has lived all over the globe, from the wilds of Northern Ontario and the cornfields of Iowa to the concrete jungles of Seoul and Abu Dhabi. Currently, she is living in New York, writing from wherever there is strong coffee and funky beats. When she’s not laying down steamy scenes on the page, you can find her whipping up hot and spicy concoctions in the kitchen or dancing to the beat of her own drummer.
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Friday, August 26, 2016

Book Blitz: Wicka by Christy Deveaux

Christy Deveaux
Publication date: May 28th 2014
Genres: Paranormal, Romance, Young Adult
While mourning the loss of a mother figure, Elizabeth Blake, a smart but socially introverted seventeen year old girl from Ann Arbor Michigan, thinks she’s enrolling in an international school in the south of France to finish her final year of high school. Instead, she falls in love; finds out that she is a witch from an ancient family –– who weren’t thought to exist anymore; and discovers that her life is in danger, as the Elders believe that she is the heir to a legend they fear above all else.
Wicka, the debut novel by Christy Deveaux, has been compared to other fantasy paranormal tales such as Twilight, written by Stephanie Meyer and Harry Potter, written by J.K. Rowling. Young adults and grown ups alike are sure to love this adventure filled magical romance.
Grab your copy for 99¢ for a limited time only!
Book Trailer:

Author Bio:
Christy Deveaux is the author of The Chronicles of Elizabeth Blake series. Her highly anticipated first book in the series, Wicka, was just released this spring (2014). Inspired by traveling across Europe solo at a very young age, and many travel adventures since, the character and story line behind Elizabeth Blake was born. Christy majored in political science and earned a cross-disciplinary degree from the University of Western Ontario. She lives in Toronto, Ontario with her husband, three children and a fish named Cow.


Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Book Blitz: Neil by Sybil Bartel

Sybil Bartel
(Uncompromising #2)
Publication date: August 22nd 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Ex-Danish Military Special Forces, built like a legend, and uncompromising in every way—Neil Christensen didn’t walk into my life. The Viking-sized warrior crashed it like a hurricane.
The moment he showed up at my strip club, my life fell to shit. South Florida’s most ruthless motorcycle gang, the cops, the Feds—they all want something I don’t have, something the Viking took from me.
I thought I could run, but the motorcycle gang caught me. Now the only thing standing between me and an unmarked grave is a warrior I don’t trust.
I’m not afraid to die, but I am terrified of weathering the storm. Because when a Viking decides to unleash his fury, no one is going to come out unscathed.
Warning: This book contains alpha heroes, offensive language, violence and sexual situations. Mature audiences only. 18+
NEIL is a full-length, standalone novel and is the second book in the Uncompromising Series.
TALON, the first book in the Uncompromising Series is also a full-length standalone novel and is available now.
He threw the gear in park, cut the engine and opened his door. The cab filled with the sound of cicadas and I glanced around in a panic. Before I could think what to do, my door opened and he undid my seat belt.
“Get out.” His features were more austere than in the warehouse.
I trembled. “No.”
“Not a request.”
Viking was alpha, all alpha. He commanded everything but he’d never forced me to do anything. Anxiety licked at my conscience but I swung my legs out of the truck because showing fear was worse than defeat.
My feet hit the ground and I looked up at him with every ounce of defiance I had. “Now what?”
His shoulders dropped, he leaned toward me and his body language went from tensed restraint to liquid seduction in half a second. “Look up,” he gently commanded.
Was this a trick? Was he only pretending to not be mad? Reluctant to take my eyes off him, I glanced at the dark sky. “What about it?”
“What do you see?”
I swallowed past the tightness in my throat. “Night.”
“The moon and stars,” his low, quiet voice corrected.
I didn’t like this. Him gentle, making me look at the stars, this wasn’t the man who’d killed to save my life. “So?”
Huge, warm fingers wrapped around the back of my neck. “The same moon that was there last night.” He moved closer. “The same stars that will be there tomorrow night.”
His body heat curled around me like everything I’d ever wanted and I pushed back. “Is this some kind of proverb?”
“Same as the night sky, I was there yesterday and I will be there tomorrow.”
My throat closed up, my chest tightened and I fought tears. It was the single most beautiful thing anyone had ever said to me. And it was a complete lie.

Author Bio:
Sybil Bartel grew up in Northern California with her head in a book and her feet in the sand. She dreamt of becoming a painter but the heady scent of libraries with their shelves full of books drew her into the world of storytelling. She loves the New Adult genre, but any story about a love so desperately wrong and impossibly beautiful makes her swoon.
Sybil now resides in Southern Florida and while she doesn’t get to read as much as she likes, she still buries her toes in the sand. If she isn’t writing or fighting to contain the banana plantation in her backyard, you can find her spending time with her handsomely tattooed husband, her brilliantly practical son and a mischievous miniature boxer…
But Seriously?
Here are ten things you probably really want to know about Sybil.
She grew up a faculty brat. She can swear like a sailor. She loves men in uniform. She hates being told what to do. She can do your taxes (but don’t ask). The Bird Market in Hong Kong freaks her out. Her favorite word is desperate…or dirty, or both—she can’t decide. She has a thing for muscle cars. But never reply on her for driving directions, ever. And she has a new book boyfriend every week—don’t tell her husband.
To find out more about Sybil Bartel, be sure to follow her on Twitter (she loves to hear about your favorite book boyfriend!), visit her website, like her on Facebook or join her Facebook group Book Boyfriend Heroes for exclusive excerpts and giveaways.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Blog Tour: Choices by @AuthorMichelleL #review

Contemporary Romance
Date Published: January 25, 2016

Everyone makes lots of little decisions from the moment they wake up until they sink back into sleep at night. Decisions that have no consequences or expectations. But, what about the rare choices that could change everything? How do you know what is right for you? 

Happiness is something you have to choose again and again, each day. 

Michaela Matthews wants that more than anything. Standing in her way is a family pushing her down a specific path and the man she loves preventing her from choosing anything different. When she moves to the city for the next step in her parent’s plan, she starts to figure out what she wants - or more importantly, what she doesn’t want. She thinks she has to leave her old life behind to discover a new one. This throws every choice she has made into question. It isn’t until tragedy strikes that she learns that sometimes there is no choice at all. Sometimes you can have it all. 

Jason Marks has had the kind of life where things have seemed to just happen to him, no choice involved at all. It’s a struggle for him to keep the past at bay while he tries to move forward. He is no longer the unwanted foster kid. He is a business owner, surrounded by people that love him. But, he isn’t in love. He’s not even sure he believes in it. Not anymore. At least, not until a heartbroken girl falls apart in his arms. It’s enough to make him a believer. Make him a dreamer. Enough to force him to answer that question. Do you give all of yourself to someone who might not choose you in return? 

Yes. Yes, you do. 

Purchase Link


I liked how quick and smooth this read was. There is enough going on to keep my attention and to provide a getaway from all things reality. 

It is very different than I was expecting. 

The chemistry between the two characters was outstanding and their growth in their relationship and as people was wonderful to watch unfold. 

Michelle Lynn really shows her writing skills when it comes to setting the scenes. She brings life to the world and characters she has created. 

Michelle Lynn is a pretty simple person. A good book and a comfy chair is all she needs to be content. She reads … a lot and is also a big TV and hockey buff. But it is writing that means so much to her. Most of her life has been spent ill and that has not changed. Soon after college she found herself unable to pursue a career with her business degree and on disability. Then she started to write and it changed everything for her.

In the years since, she has published a YA dystopian trilogy, Dawn of Rebellion, as well as three books in her New Beginnings romance series. 

Contact Links

Twitter: @AuthorMichelleL

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Blog Tour: The Return of Tachlanad by @KFischerBrown #review

Date Published: October 16, 2015
Publisher: Books We Love, Ltd.

Once upon a time in the beleaguered land of Lothria… A princess under a magical aura, her absent-minded sorcerer grandfather; a conflicted warrior prince; a young ne’er-do-well who finds an unlikely friend while on an impossible quest; an imprisoned queen, her betrayed king, their enchanted son and his beautiful enchantress; half-human man-eating rebel slaves; a band of blood-thirsty assassins…and Tachlanad, the legendary Sword of Names, missing for generations… 

When the queen receives an omen, it can mean only one thing: the fate of all she loves hangs in the balance. The land and its people will topple into chaos if a tenuous alliance cannot be preserved. Her husband misled by sinister forces, her son gone missing, she sends her daughter and father on a journey far to the west to reach the impregnable stronghold of “the True King in Hiding.” There they will seal the truce with her marriage to the old king’s unwilling son and unite against the evil power that seeks to subjugate them. Unless the Imperon has his way. 

An epic fantasy adventure for young adult and adult readers, The Return of Tachlanad is the first book in the “Sword of Names” series.

Purchase Link


I liked the diversity and originality of this novel. 

Believeable and Relatable characters really help to captivate the reader and get them invested in the happenings of this story. 

This was a great start to the series, a lot of backstory needed and had to understand a lot as with a lot of first in series, but I am excited to see where it goes next.

Authors get their ideas in a variety of ways. For me, its mainly from dreams—very cinematic dreams—that stay in my head long after Ive awakened. Mostly these night flicks are nothing more than a collection of cryptic and often unrelated scenes that need to simmer on the back burner while my muse (when shes not vacationing on a sunny beach somewhere) helps to add seasoning and substance to the mix.
Ive always loved history. Way back in junior high, my mind would wander from dates, battles and treaties to musings on what it might have been like to live in another time. Family vacations always included visits to Civil War or Revolutionary War battle sites, tours of colonial houses and restored villages, which, even these many years later, serve as inspiration.
Born in New York City, I live in central Connecticut with a long-time husband, a grown-up daughter and two dogs. We also have a grown-up son and daughter-in-law, who recently presented us with our first grandson. When not writing I enjoy cooking, gardening, photography, reading, music, movies, and long walks with the pups.

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