Monday, September 30, 2013

Knowing Vera by Rachelle Ayala

Knowing Vera, a thrilling romantic suspense and cross-cultural family drama, released September 6 on Amazon.

Excellent and exciting read! – Cate Beauman

The tension just ups and ups!  Well, done. – H. Elliston

Vera’s dating Zach, casually, not committed, when she finds out her long-departed father is the killer of Zach’s mother many years ago.

Meanwhile, Zach reevaluates his life after a tragic accident and realizes he's falling in love with Vera.

Can their timing be so wrong? Vera knows the relationship is doomed, but she cannot resist the tugging of her heart and Zach's panty-melting grin.

Caught in a web of family secrets and hidden agendas, Vera and Zach must depend on each other for survival. A dangerous killer is on the loose, and Vera must find the truth, wherever that leads, even if it’s shocking news for Zach.

From the Author:
Vera Custodio is possibly my most favorite character. I never planned on making her a heroine, but she grew on me. In Broken Build, she first appears as the sister of a dead man, and then as the flirt enticing Dave Jewell with her pancit malabon. From there, she grew to be Maryanne Torres’ best friend in Hidden Under Her Heart. She met Zach Spencer, a playboy triathlete, and succumbed to his charms, but under her terms. Since she was a side character, she had several bad traits she had to grow out of to become a true heroine. She was a flirt, had trouble keeping her panties on, and dropped boyfriends like used nail extensions. But she was also caring, loyal, and a darn good cook. When Zach Spencer suffers a crippling injury, I knew Vera would be the perfect woman for him. But first, she has to overcome the mystery in her past and open her heart enough to trust. And that’s the theme of Knowing Vera.

So, download Knowing Vera for 99c, kick up your heels and enter my awesome Giveaway, featuring the all NEW Improved Amazon Kindle Paperwhite, a paperback, and giftcard.

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Saturday, September 28, 2013

Guest Post : Mara Valderran

World Building: Culture Clashes and Diversity Among the Races

One of the best things about fantasy is how many different races and cultures you might come across. Just in our world alone, there are thousands throughout history. So when you have several worlds to deal with, the possibilities are endless.

I think that’s one of the reasons I am so drawn to fantasy. As I’m writing this, I’m watching Stargate: SG1, which is a great example of exploring other cultures throughout history through a fictional medium. I tend to use history as a reference point when creating the people in my stories. Which means watching Stargate is research, of course. It has nothing to do with my longstanding crush on Doctor Daniel Jackson.

In Heirs of War, there are several worlds and races, which means there are tons of cultures out there. And not all of them get along. I introduce three races in the first book, each with their own ways. The Donnfay are elves and the least human-like of the races so far. They like to keep busy, abhor violence, and think themselves superior to the other races. In all actuality, they probably are. The other race is the magical humans, which other races call the Teaghailei. They are ruled by the Duillaine, and their lives are dictated by archaic customs and rituals like arranged marriages and apprenticeships from a young age. The Athucreans are the third race introduced in the first book. They are a warrior race with specific gifts, which is why the Cynewards (the warriors blood-bound to protect the Duillaine) are chosen from their strongest.

Each of the three races has their own culture. With the Teaghailei, there are several cultures within this race. Estridia is the largest and most powerful of the Teaghailei worlds and the seat of power for the Duillaine, the rulers of the worlds. Even within Estridia, there are different cultures. Life in Anscombe, the capital, is much different from the desolate mining towns that make up most of the Western Region.  Some worlds are small enough to have one common culture, like Seirbigoine, a world with strong ties to the Earth element. Cahira is the only world large enough to rival Estridia, and it is the seat of the rebellion. 

Where you have different cultures, you have different conflicts as well. I think that’s a big theme in book one. These girls (aside from Terrena) are all dragged from our world into one that seems absolutely archaic to them. And they automatically have the urge to enlighten, whereas the Duillaine feel the same about them. Each group thinks their ways are better, just like the Cahirans think their ways are better than the Estridians. That’s really the heart of the war. Cahira was powerful enough to do things differently and survive hard times, and now they think everyone else should do the same. But as long as the Duillaine run the show, they are going to run things the way they see fit and the way they think is working.

I tend to pick and choose different elements from cultures throughout history when creating mine. For example, the Athucreans are a mix of Viking and Native American cultures. If we were to come across a Viking from the days of Erik the Red or a Native American from the days before Christopher Columbus stumbled upon the Americas, we would think of them as primitive, maybe even barbaric. This isn’t far from how the Teaghailei think of the Athucreans. The Cahirans are more like socialists, whereas the Duillaine are a cross between far right-wing Republicans and royalty. Their differences are the root of a lot of the political problems throughout the books. It’s really fun to explore how their differences separate them and how their similarities can unite them in unexpected ways. 

What are some of your favorite cultures in books? Do you spot similarities to other cultures in literature?

Check out Mara's giveaway and be sure to look for Heirs of War, out soon!

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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

When the words don't stop...

Thank you so much to everyone who helped with this week-long blog tour for the release of Reckless Radiance! I had a lot of fun hopping around to everyone's blogs and doing fun interviews, excerpts and giveaways. I feel very blessed to have an amazing support system of authors, bloggers and colleagues who love me. I love you right back.

With the end of this tour comes some very big third novel, Natural Harmony will be released before the year is over!! I am tentatively putting the release date at December 30th BUT things have been moving very quickly and if I can get it out sooner I know I won't be able to wait that long. So what I will say is before 2013 is done, you'll have this book

It will be my very first venture into self-publishing, something I have been planning to do for a while and am so excited about! This story took over my brain earlier this year and even kept me from working on Reckless Radiance for a few weeks because it just wouldn't quit. I'm in love with it and I want you to be in love with it too. 

So get ready for my third novel, folks! Because she's coming sooner than I ever imagined!

Thank you for reading, thank you supporting, liking, commenting, sharing, dreams continue to come true every day all because of the ways you help me and I couldn't be more grateful.

Natural Harmony

Suddenly named the acting president of her uncle’s record label, former pop princess Sabrina Walker is finally ready to grow up. While her professional life moves forward, she still clings to the last fragment of her past life in the form of an uncertain relationship with her manager, Beau.

When Sabrina hires handsome, young assistant, Wade Lawson, he awakens in her the hidden confidence she’s always desired. What starts as a casual affair quickly intensifies to something much more.

Sabrina must decide—return to the familiar life of an insecure one-hit-wonder, or embrace Wade and the woman his passion has helped reveal.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Welcome To Penny's Pie Diner

In Reckless Radiance, Valerie works at the tiny pie diner, Penny's. I LOVE to bake and I really love making pies so I thought it would be fun to share my personal pie crust recipe with you. I have had wonderful luck with this recipe for those of you who have always been a little scared to make your own crust. It's easier than you think. Give this one a whirl!

Penny's Sweet Pie Crust

(Double batch for covered pies or lattice top)

2 cups flour
1 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 cup white baking sugar
1/2 cup cold water

Mash shortening into flour until shortening looks like pea sized flour crumbles. Add sugar and mix in evenly. Add water two tablespoons at a time and knead with hands. Dust hands with flour to make two balls of dough to be rolled out evenly in 9-inch diameter circles. Depending on your filling, bake pie crust accordingly. Most crusts should bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Yay pie!

Today on the blog tour I'm with Melissa Keir on her blog, Sexy Between the Covers!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Reckless Radiance

After the loss of her childhood love, Valerie Gilmore runs away from the life she's always known to try to start again. Between her job as a diner waitress and her toxic relationship with the first guy to help her forget her past, Valerie feels more alone than ever before until she meets Russell. He's sweet but strange and Valerie can't help but think he's hiding something. He acts as though he knows her and he seems to be looking past her broken heart, straight into her soul.

Russell has pushed aside the ancient laws of his angel brethren to find Valerie and stay as close to her as possible. He’s forced to contemplate sharing the truth about what he is after a deadly turn of events cause Valerie to run away once more. His feelings for her and a promise he made long ago help him to realize he longs to leave his life as an angel behind for a chance at love.

Purchase links available here

Check out an interview with me on Vincent Morrone's blog today

Friday, September 20, 2013

Reckless Radiance : Meet The Characters

Today I wanted to give you a quick peek at the two main characters from Reckless Radiance! And on today's blog tour stop you can read a character interview with Valerie on author Stephanie Lawton's blog.

Russell, angel
Age: Unknown
Looks: Tall, dark brown/black hair, blue eyes
Likes & Interests: Coffee, humor, dark clothing
Dislikes: Violence, alcohol, betrayal

Valerie Gilmore, human
Age: 20
Looks: Petite, blonde, hazel eyes
Likes & Interests: Baking, bowling, the outdoors
Dislikes: Secrets, lies, baseball

Find out WAY more in Reckless Radiance, on sale now!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

NA Author : Dawn Pendleton!

Dawn Pendleton is a new adult author currently residing in New England with her husband and their pup, though she has immediate plans to move to Georgia and promptly become a Southern Belle. When she isn't staring at a blank page, willing the words to jump from her head to the screen, she's usually playing on her iPhone, reading a book, or taking pictures with her fancy camera (which she has no idea how to use). 

Her newest release, the first novella in the Best Friends Forever Series, was an idea that occurred to her back in February, when she first started writing. She wasn't at a place where she could write them, though, so she started her Broken Series, instead. Through this past Summer, the BFF series emerged in her head, taking more space until she finally had to let them out. Liar, Liar, the first episode in the series, released this past Tuesday and is free on all retailers except Amazon.

Liar, Liar Blurb
Hazel is a freshman at Coastal Carolina and looking forward to making new friends. When she meets Roman, she’s head over heels for him. There’s one problem, though: he’s still hung up on Hazel’s roommate, Cheyanne. But Cheyanne has a secret, one that has the potential to ruin her life in college. When Hazel learns the secret, she’s determined to use it against Cheyanne to win over Roman. She never imagines her plan could backfire, leaving her as a pariah among her new circle of friends. 

The BFF series follows the lives of new adults, Hazel, Miranda, Cheyanne, Destiny, Audric, Nolan, Andre, and Roman. Follow their stories as the first season of novellas are released once a week from September to March.

To enter the rafflecopter, go to each blog listed and enter the corresponding code in the rafflecopter.

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This is Blog #5 and the code is DAWNKATE

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The Music of Reckless Radiance

Author Mara Valderran has the soundtrack to Reckless Radiance on her stop on the blog tour today and in honor of the lovely music of the book I'm giving away a copy of the 'soundtrack'! Enter here to win!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013


Whenever I talk about Reckless Radiance I say it's paranormal but it's not overly paranormal. I want to say it's paranormalish but is that weird? It's not that I don't like that it's a paranormal book but it's first and foremost a romance book. 

The story is about Valerie, her loss of her childhood love, her toxic relationship with bad guy Henry and her evolving relationship with mysterious Russell. It's about her learning to deal with her pain and figuring out things about her life that she never knew, including how Russell has played a role in her story longer than she's realized. 

It's ultimately a love story between Valerie and Russell and Russell just happens to be a paranormal being. 

I think the book will appeal to paranormal fans but it will be an easy read for those who wouldn't normally pick up a paranormal title. I'm hoping that fans of The Low Notes will see the parallels in theme. It's still about following your heart and forgetting the rules.

Check today's stop on the blog tour at Laura's Bookshelf Review!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Reckless Radiance Release Day!!

The day has finally arrived! Reckless Radiance is here! I didn't quite know how I would feel today. Having been through it just once before, I knew it wouldn't feel the same as the first time but it almost does! It's just as exciting and exhilarating and terrifying.

Sending my little baby out into the world, into the hands of readers, is scary and possibly the most vulnerable feeling ever (besides those naked-in-your-high-school-chemistry-class dreams). But it's also the sweetest kind of relief. After working on this book for five years, the day has finally come that it flies away and does what it will.

Reckless Radiance went through so many different incarnations but I'm proudest of the book it is now. The work that is out there today is what was meant to be all along. Head over to the first stop on the blog tour where Britni Hill has a list of little known facts about the story. And One More Chapter has an exclusive excerpt from the book!

Buy the book on Amazon, Barnes & Noble or All Romance E-books today!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

NA Authors : Dawna Raver!

Dawna Raver is an author of paranormal romance and urban fantasy. Color Wielders, book one of the Heirs of the Magykal Realm series, is her debut novel. When she's not spending tim ein her fantasy world, Dawn loves football, reading, and pretending she's a top chef in the kitchen. Oh, and fawning over her dogs and husband, sometimes in that order. 

Behind the Faerying Mysts, hidden from Mortal eyes, is a land where gods and creatures of myth and legend dwell. And in the Mortal Realm, their Princess is hidden away.

Quinn Sinclair lives an ordinary life with her less-than-loving mother in Conifer, Colorado, clueless of her true nature. On the night of her bithday, a staggering betrayal sends her life spinning out-of-control. As she struggles to pick up the pieces, a vision of a man with haunting tourmaline-blue eyes begs her for help, and she is transported into a Magykal battle-forever changing her life.  

Arik Morgaine - Demigod bad boy and outcast of the Magykal Realm - tried to avoid contact with Princess Quinn for eighteen years, not wanting to make good on an old threat. But the fates have other plans. Arik can no longer deny his growing desire for Quinn, or the need to protect her from those wanting to control her burgeoning powers. 

Can the two of them come together and save the Magykal Realm from being destroyed by the Darkest of Magyks? 

To enter the rafflecopter giveaway, go to each blog and enter the special code from each blog into the correct blog space on the Rafflecopter. 

This is Blog #5 and the code is DAWNAKATE

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Monday, September 9, 2013

Do I Bother You at Night? Book Trailer

Check out Troy Aaron Ratliff's book traile for his upcoming sci-fi-horror novel, Do I Bother You At Night?

Add DIBYAN to your Goodreads list!

Friday, September 6, 2013

What I've Been Reading...

Haven't done this in a while so I thought I'd share some books I've had the pleasure of reading recently. They are almost all romance and I really enjoyed all of them!

Teacher/student romance!!! This musically themed forbidden love story kept popping up under The Low Notes' 'you might like this book' suggestions on Amazon and after starting a Facebook friendship with author Stephanie Lawton I wanted to check it out. This book was intense! Though the romance is more on the YA spectrum as far as heat goes, the family drama dynamic was shocking and at times unnerving. I really enjoyed seeing the transformation in Juli from start to finish. It was very realistically played out and Stephanie Lawton's writing is superb. I haven't yet started Need, the follow-up from Isaac's POV but I'm looking forward to it and Lawton's unrelated upcoming novel, Shelf Life.

Oh River Wilde, River Wilde, River Wilde! This musical romance had me "ooh"ing and "ahh"ing over the sexy rock star. The instant connection between River and Dahlia is done very well but as the story progresses you learn all about the little ways their lives are connected. The follow up, Torn, is coming in October and I am DYING to read it after the way this book ended. Talk about a twist!

Technically I listened to this one on audiobook but only because the way David Sedaris reads his own work only makes it funnier. This collection of essays was chosen as the August book for my book club and it was hilarious. Sedaris has such a funny way of telling stories we can all relate to in the most ridiculous ways. His other books have been just as funny and I would recommend them to anyone. My husband and I listen to the audiobook of Holidays on Ice every year in December.

These books. I wish I had the words for how crazy I've been about these books. I'm still in the middle of Pulse but it is proving to be just as awesome as Collide (which usually doesn't happen for me with follow-ups). Gavin Blake is one shmexy mother-f'er and even though I've wanted to strangle her about a million times since page one of Collide, Emily Cooper is a very well-written heroine. If you want some HEAT, get these books immediately!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

NA Authors: Jade Eby!

Welcome the first New Adult Fall Promotion author to my blog, Jade Eby!

Once upon a time, there was a little girl who fell in love with books. Then she grew up to write her own. 

Jade has participated in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) six times and enjoys copious amounts of coffee. When she's not writing, she enjoys trashy reality T.V. and reading everything she can get her hands on. 

Mommy to two dogs and two naughty kitties, she feels like she might be on her way to having a zoo. You can find her on almost every social networking site that aids in her procrastination. 

Here's a little about her book, The Right Kind of Wrong...

Nothing stays hidden forever. 

Kara Pierce has held onto the same dream since she was a little girl: to be the next Katie Couric. 

Vince Gage, a budding filmmaker whose I-don't-give-a-shit attitude cancels out his char,. almost ruined it for her once, and now he's back, threatening to do it again. 

When the two of them are paired together for a college competition with a $20,000 prize, the only thing they agree on is winning. 

They return to Iowa where Kara grew up to research her grandfather's service in World War II, instead they find themselves in the middle of a family scandal kept quiet for far too long.

As Kara and Vince investigate the scandal deeper, they realize the price of uncovering the truth is so much more than they bargained for. 

Want to win something?  To enter the giveaway, please enter the following code in the correct space (Blog #5) on the Rafflecopter: JADEKATE

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