Monday, October 21, 2019

Review of THE FLOATING DOOR Poems By M.E. Silverman

The Floating Door
by Matthew Silverman
Paperback, first, 92 pages
Published February 18th, 2018 by Glass Lyre Press
ISBN 1941783465

This is a moving collection of poems that captures several different series into one bound volume. He writes about old wives' tales, the American suburbs, and a series about the last living Jew in Afghanistan. These poems are narrative and full of magical realism. M.E. Silverman’s The Floating Door moves from the peculiar and vivid details of growing up Jewish in America to a series of musings about the last Jew in Kabul, over whom “the sun snaps shut/ like a casket.” Noah and Abraham and Isaac vie for attention in a child’s mind with schoolyard rhymes like step on a crack, break your mother’s back. A menorah takes center stage, then a Captain America glass. Throughout, there’s a daring coupling of whimsy and pathos. Shoes from the piles in the Holocaust Museum, “rise leisurely, puppets on strings” to “sweep through the air like Astaire and Rogers.”

PURCHASE HERE:

I found this collection of poetry and narrative paragraphs quite interesting. It covers a broad range of topics but the main one is Judaism. Don’t fret if the Jewish terms in the book elude you because there is a glossary in the back of the book. A few of the poems such as “Spaces” and “Imaginary Prop List For An Abandoned Temple” have a different yet intriguing format. Silverman’s writing has a nice flow with plenty of delightful descriptions that makes the poems come alive. Also, synonyms and idioms used are marvelous. I think the front runner in that department comes from “Finding My Father’s Kinnor”; “...they break open my father’s lungs like a pistachio…” is impressive. Finally, I am going to finish this review with one of the poems that I could really relate to.

Friday At Publix In Atlanta At checkout, a tall man in an overcoat stands with two kids, one in each tight hand. The store is crowded. Everyone has dinner to make, company to keep. My cart looks deep and hollow, one frozen meal, a bottle of soda, and a bar of chocolate. The woman, getting checked out by an old grocer, is half my age, buttoned in a yellow parka like a ripe banana. I almost laugh- except her cart is flowing with cans and meals and sweets. She must have a lover and two or three kids, a minivan, Washed and bright as stars. She singing showtunes on the way to her two-story home, hopes she has time for her yoga class, hopes all is safe and right. Out of the corner of my eye, I see a kid wiggle free to touch an Impulse item while the dad seizes the moment to check stocks or Sports on his new phone. I pretend not to hear when the grocer pauses to let me know the self-checkout is free. I think no rush. she points a puffy finger my way. I avoid eye contact until she resumes the blips and beeps a steady sound of something achieved.






Matthew Silverman
Born in New Rochelle, NY, The United States

WEBSITE: 









Other books include:
Best Mets
100 Things Mets Fans Should Know and Do Before They Die
New York Mets: The Complete Illustrated History
Mets Essential
Baseball Miscellany
--Co-Author of
Mets by the Numbers
Red Sox by the Numbers
Cubs by the Numbers
--Former associate publisher at Total Sports Publishing
--Managing editor of Total Baseball, Total Football and ESPN Baseball and Pro Football Encyclopedias



Tuesday, August 27, 2019

WHEN LIGHT SHATTERS Book Blitz & GIVEAWAY of a Clean Teen Publishing Mystery Box

When Light Shatters 
Laney Wylde 

Published by: CTP Pulse- Crimson Tree
Publication date: August 26th, 2019
Genres: Contemporary, LGBTQ+, New Adult, Romance
Harlow’s parents are dead. So is her brother. So is Tenley.
Probably.
Hopefully.
She’s like… ninety-five percent sure about that last one.
Seventeen and orphaned, Harlow is eager to leave her past behind when she moves in with her guardians. But in her new environment, she’s drawn to Brighton, a senior in her art class who is haunted by ghosts similar to her own. It’s not long before Harlow realizes their friendship has turned into something deeper—something that Brighton would have to sacrifice everything to pursue.
And Brighton does.
Their secret romance is perfect…until the precarious life Harlow has built crumbles beneath her. In the collapse, they both come face to face with Tenley.
Who, it turns out, is far from dead.
Perfect for fans of The Kiss Thief and The Book of Essie, Laney Wylde’s coming-of-age, bisexual romance When Light Shatters is a heady and gripping read. With a touch of irreverence and suspense, Wylde’s most vulnerable work yet will keep you guessing from the first page to the last.
EXCERPT:
His door is cracked, so I push it open. “Jackson, your mom wants you to––” I don’t remember what I was going to say because when I see Jackson, his cheeks are red. It’s hard to see them under his Oakland A’s cap, but his eyes look red too. Sitting on his bed, he wipes some tears off his face and sniffs.
“Did you get hurt?” I ask.
He shakes his head.
“Did something make you sad?”
He nods.
I climb up onto his bed and sit next to him. “Are you sad about Tyler getting hurt?”
Jackson looks at me. “Tyler died,” he whispers. “We’re not going to see him again.”
I shake my head. “That’s what I thought, but then I heard my dad say…” that Tyler should never have been riding my bike. If my dad wanted me riding the bad bike, he wanted me to die. He wanted to never see me again. And that can’t be true because Daddy loves me, and he tells me so whenever I’m with Tyler. But if Tyler’s gone, maybe Daddy won’t tell me anymore. Daddy hasn’t said anything to me at all since Tyler’s crash.
“Never mind,” I say. “I think you’re right.”
“I’m just sad,” Jackson says.
“Okay.” He looks down and I look around his room at all the baseball posters on the walls. “My mom holds my hand when I’m sad.”
“Does it help?”
“Sometimes.” I open my hand to him. “We could try it.” He reaches for it and holds it tight in his.
After a while, I say, “I’m sorry you’re sad.”
He nods.
“Your mom said you need to set the table.”
“Okay.” He sniffs and wipes under his nose with the back of his hand. Not the hand holding mine. The other one.
We hop down from his bed, and he lets go of my hand. I walk toward his door, but he catches up to me and gives me a hug. I hug him back, resting my head on his shoulder when he rests his head on mine. I don’t know if holding his hand made him less sad, but I hope this does. It makes me feel a little better. Because if Jackson is hugging me, maybe he didn’t want me to get hit by the truck. Maybe he just wished nobody got hit.



Laney Wylde is enamored with all things southern California--the traffic, smog, surprise earthquakes, and nonindigenous palm trees. Consequently, it's the landscape her strong and sometimes lovable female leads paint their stories on. Her New Adult novels Never Touched and the After Twelve series are bright with provocative themes, steamy romance, and inappropriately timed humor.

When Laney isn't writing, she's singing Taylor Swift with her little boy or asking her husband not to tell her about his work as a surgical resident while she's eating. She daydreams about using her math degree to get into law school, then realizes that would be too much work and that she should just play pretend court on paper instead. While she loves a good book, nothing beats 30 Rock with a bag of popcorn and M&Ms.

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Wednesday, August 14, 2019

MIDNIGHT Book Blitz & $25 Amazon Cift Card Giveaway!!!

Midnight 
J.V. Speyer 
Publication date: August 14th, 2019
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, LGBTQ+, Romance
Brandon loved Adrian, so when Adrian abruptly moved out of their apartment Brandon was devastated. Six weeks later Brandon is ready to start to ease his way back into life again, but a chance encounter leaves him questioning everything he thought he knew – about Adrian, their relationship, and himself.
His friends are there to see him through it, especially his best friend Greg. Greg wants what’s best for Brandon. He’s always wanted what’s best for Brandon, even when it’s not necessarily what’s best for Greg. As Adrian’s true nature is revealed, Greg starts to wonder if maybe what’s best for both of them wouldn’t be each other.



EXCERPT:
Brandon sat down on one of the chairs. “Yeah. I mean I know he had to hide. I knew that going in. A lot of guys had to do that. Most of them figure it out. And I’m not mad at him or anything. I just want to move on.” He frowned. ”What are you trying to get at here, Greg? Why does Adrian have anything to do with tonight’s party?”
Greg inclined his head down, toward the spot on the street that he hadn’t been able to tear his eyes from. “Because he’s been here this whole time.”
Brandon choked on his gin and tonic. “What?”
“He’s been sitting outside the condo, watching the building, this whole time. I mean, I get it.”
“I don’t!” Brendon declared, standing up again. He clutched his drink in his hand and couldn’t decide if he wanted to hurl it at the ex standing on the ground or if he wanted to go inside and hide. Throwing the glass would be wrong. It would be irresponsible; it would get people hurt. He didn’t want to hurt Adrian, even if this latest stunt was creepy and stalker-ish. “He’s the one who walked away. Why is he hanging around outside my building like some kind of lonely ghost?”
“He wanted your attention. He didn’t know how to get it, and his ploy backfired spectacularly. I think he regrets what he did.” Greg sighed. “I’ve been watching him all night, trying to figure out what to do. I was thinking about bringing him in.”
Brandon spun, bringing himself face to face with his best friend. “Why would you do that?”
“Because you love him, Bran!”
“So what? I’m moving on, trying to rebuild my life. Something you have not been shy about encouraging, I’ll point out. And you want to just… what, drag him back in here? What could that possibly accomplish?” He pulled at his hair.
“I thought it might give you guys a second chance.” Now it was Greg’s turn to sit down, flopping into one of the other patio chairs like it was the only thing holding him up. “I want to see you happy, Bran. I keep hopping this fence – I know you weren’t with the people who made you happy, but you seemed so perfect for each other. And I desperately want you to be happy.” He sighed heavily, gesturing back in Adrian’s general direction. “But I didn’t do it. The guy’s in his thirties. If he wanted to come up he could ring the doorbell like an adult.”
Brandon shook his head and rubbed Greg’s shoulders. “I knew I could trust you.” Greg leaned into the touch, just a little bit, and Brandon grinned. “I thought we established that Adrian can’t make me happy at this point. We’re not right for each other, even if we thought we were.”
“I know. I just don’t know what to do here.” He leaned back. “I mean, this is kind of creepy. He’s just out there, watching. If I’m not going to invite him inside, I probably ought to call the cops.”
Technically, Greg was right. Brandon probably ought to call the police, because no good ever came from one ex staking out the other’s home like this. “Do you think he’s dangerous?” Brandon hedged. “Seriously, has he said anything that’s struck you as dangerous?”
“Other than creepily hanging around outside your house? Nah. Not that he’d say anything to me, you know?” Greg snorted. “I’m pretty much the last person he’s talking to right now, except maybe you.”
“What do you mean?” Brandon’s arms froze on his friend’s shoulders.
“He’s all pissy because I lit into him about stalking you through the rally.” Greg waved a calloused hand in dismissal. “Like okay, fine, he wants to be with someone new. Okay. And so what if the guy’s an undergrad – it’s a little weird, he’s a little young for a midlife crisis but who am I to judge? But that whole thing – like anyone didn’t know what he was up to.” He shook his head again, and Brandon could feel his shoulders tensing up again underneath his hands. “I wasn’t going to just sit there and not say anything.”
Brandon let his hands fall. “Oh, Greg. I’m so sorry.”
“What the hell for?”
“I never wanted to come between the two of you. You’re friends. You should be doing friend things, not arguing over me.” He turned away, clutching at his drink so he could do something with his hands.


Author Bio:
J. V. Speyer has lived in upstate New York and rural Catalonia before settling in the greater Boston area. She has worked in archaeology, security, accountancy, finance, and non-profit management. She currently lives just south of Boston in a house old enough to remember when her town was a tavern community with a farming problem. (No, really. John Adams complained about it. A lot.)
When not writing, J. V. enjoys watching baseball and seeking out all of New England’s creepiest spots. Her Spawn has turned her into a hockey enthusiast. She can be bribed with gin, tequila, and cats.

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Wednesday, August 7, 2019

THE MINIMALIST BABE BOOK BLITZ & $30 AMAZON Gift Card Giveaway



The Minimalist Babe: Tidying-Up Your Whole Life 
Lola R. Marie 
Publication date: September 7th, 2019
Genres: Adult, Self-help

Lola is every bit the minimalist babe – she lives simply, is intelligent and sassy, emotional and strong, calm and composed. Realizing that less is more, she traded in material possessions to focus on what was truly important to her. Lola’s inspiring guide delivers real-world advice on how to consume less, clear out clutter, find authenticity, and live a life based on freedom. It is a sincere attempt to help those who want to end their obsession with stuff.
Echoing the thoughts behind Leonardo da Vinci’s quote that “simplicity is the ultimate sophistication,” this book teaches you how to value the simple things. From learning to declutter and live with less to living life with passion, good health, and great relationships. The Minimalist Babe is for anyone who desires a more intentional life. Drawing from real-life experiences, it is filled with stories that will teach you step-by-step how to be:
Authentic, self-assured, calm and composed, mindful, minimal and self-sufficient, financially stable, purposeful, free, healthy and happy.
Why am I writing this?
I’m not one to preach. In fact, I find the act of trying to convince someone of a different lifestyle quite unnatural. Everyone has their own path in life and their own timing. I understand the principles of minimalism may not be for everyone. You may now be wondering why then have I taken the time to write this book? The thing is that I believe everyone is a minimalist at heart; we were simple at birth, after all.
I often hear others reminisce about the old days. How life was simple and vivid during childhood. Music was heavenly, the outdoors was our domain and ice cream was everything! There was an authentic nuance to life that now most of us only have access to through our memories; the bitter-sweet nostalgia.
This book is about reviving that childlike glee. It’s about happiness and what it really takes to be happy. It’s about realizing that less is more, and about letting go of your possessions and the depressions that come with it. It’s about doing away with the unessential so we can concentrate on the things that are truly important to us. Finally, it’s about living in the present and being ready to accept the wonderful things waiting to reach you.

Our need for more: One of society’s most grave and (until now) ignored illnesses.
The Minimalist Babe is about saying goodbye to the extras in life from time to time, finding happiness in having less, and finding your inner badass through your newly acquired freedom. It is the culmination of all my research; a toolbox of sorts filled with tips, techniques, exercises, and prompts that have helped me be my most authentic self.
When I’m not writing, I spend my time nurturing relationships and learning new skills. I focus on being healthy and purposeful and it’s working like magic. I am in the happiest phase of my life and want the same for each one of you. This book is an attempt to manifest that vision. Let us cut out the bitter side of nostalgia and bite into the sweetness of life that is now
Love,
Lola



Author Bio:
Hi All!

I love to write, bathe in sunrays and ponder the mysteries of life. Follow me as I write my way to a better live.

OXOX Lola

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Sunday, July 21, 2019

A Short Review of THE FOLD by Peter Clines

The Fold
(Threshold #2)
by Peter Clines
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published June 2nd, 2015 by Crown


STEP INTO THE FOLD.
IT’S PERFECTLY SAFE. 


The folks in Mike Erikson's small New England town would say he's just your average, everyday guy. And that's exactly how Mike likes it. Sure, the life he's chosen isn’t much of a challenge to someone with his unique gifts, but he’s content with his quiet and peaceful existence.  

That is, until an old friend presents him with an irresistible mystery, one that Mike is uniquely qualified to solve: far out in the California desert, a team of DARPA scientists has invented a device they affectionately call the Albuquerque Door. Using a cryptic computer equation and magnetic fields to “fold” dimensions, it shrinks distances so that a traveler can travel hundreds of feet with a single step. 

The invention promises to make mankind’s dreams of teleportation a reality. And, the scientists insist, traveling through the Door is completely safe. 

Yet evidence is mounting that this miraculous machine isn’t quite what it seems—and that its creators are harboring a dangerous secret.  


As his investigations draw him deeper into the puzzle, Mike begins to fear there’s only one answer that makes sense. And if he’s right, it may only be a matter of time before the project destroys…everything


AMAZON / B&N GOODREADS

This read was so enjoyable because I love science. Using a few of the most interesting scientific theories in science today, such as the multiverse and the superstring theory, Clines creates a well-written story by taking these theories beyond the scope of what we actually know. Though, the consequences of what comes to be a great scientific breakthrough that the story is focused on may not always be as it appears making for a great plot. I did not like the ending. I think that Clines could have left off the last part of the story. It felt like the story had been wrapped up, but it just went on ridiculously. I definitely would recommend this book even though I didn’t care for the ending.    









Wednesday, July 3, 2019

SEE NO MORE Book Blitz & 50$ Amazon Gift Card Giveaway



See No More 
W.B. Dineen 

Publication date: July 2nd, 2019
Genres: Adult, Thriller

Thirty-three-year-old music therapist, Kate Randolph, is at the top of her professional game. Her life is happily on track, until she receives a phone call announcing the death of the man who abounded her when she was eight-years-old. Kate has no interest in going to her father’s funeral, but soon realizes she must confront the past to move forward.
While in Oregon, Kate discovers why her scientist/father disappeared, and what she learns will set her on a path that will change her life forever.

With her father’s good friend, Jake, she uncovers conspiracies beyond imagination. She learns of secret societies, cover-ups, and that and the planet is in jeopardy from both terrestrial and extraterrestrial threats.
With the aid of a mysterious stranger, Kate must help save the world. Can she stay alive long enough to succeed?

“Dineen writes in a sharp, lively prose that is equally comfortable rendering emotional domestic moments, flashy action sequences, and humorous observations. The premise is wonderfully mysterious and immediately gripping. An expansive thriller that satisfies every absent-father fantasy.”—Kirkus Reviews
“A thriller filled with twists, turns, and many layers that unfold in the most wonderful, unexpected ways. This book is simply awesome.” —Readers’ Favorite, 5/5 Stars
“One of the year’s best thrillers, See No More is a near-perfect blend of sci-fi and spy fiction. Credit author W.B. Dineen with creating a powerful novel about personal identity wrapped within a breathtaking thriller. Sure to please fans of both Douglas E. Richards and Daniel Silva ” —BestThrillers.com
EXCERPT:
Oregon is the greenest state I’ve ever seen. Abundant, lush foliage carpets gentle, rolling hills as far as the eye can see. Farmland abuts forested areas. It’s breathtakingly gorgeous, and I can definitely see how someone could get lost here.
The green landscape whizzes by and hypnotizes me as my brain begins to wander. I think of my childhood in Pasadena, just off the Caltech campus. We didn’t live in opulence, but we lived comfortably. Jen and I went to the private polytechnic school down the street from our house. It was where a lot of the professors’ kids went. I don’t know how my mom was able to afford to keep sending us there after Dad left, but we spent all twelve years of our education happily ensconced within its walls.
Caltech was my playground when I was very little. My dad taught aeronautics and applied physics. In the summer, I used to run through campus and meet him in the green space in front of Beckman Laboratories for picnics. I remember lying on a blanket next to him discussing the possibility of him shrinking me some day like in the movie Honey, I Shrunk the Kids.
He used to look around all shifty-eyed before leaning toward me and whispering, “Can you keep a secret?” Of course, I always said I could. He’d respond, “I’m closing in on the technology and I should be able to do it by the end of the year! What do you think we should do with all the money we’ll make once I sell the patent to my people-shrinking machine?”
Then we’d plot what to do with our newfound riches. I wanted to spend a month at Disneyland before spending another month at Universal Studios in Orlando. Dad wanted to take my mom on a honeymoon, because they’d never gone on a real one. Then we tried to decide which house we’d buy. I had my eye on one we passed during our weekly walks to Huntington Gardens. It was a two-and-a-half story Spanish Colonial Revival with a pool. My dad joked that he wasn’t sure it would be big enough for the four of us, even though it had to be at least five times the size of our bungalow.
Memories burst through my subconscious like a storm-engorged river breaching a failing dam. As soon as one pops into my mind, at least thirty more push their way forward with unstoppable force. I’m sitting on the plaid blanket we always used for our picnics, and my dad says, “Katie, life is never what you perceive it to be.” Then I’m lying in bed and he whispers, “Believe the unbelievable. Things are never what you think they are.” Suddenly, I’m flying through the warm Southern California breeze on my bicycle, and he yells out, “Just because you think these are trees, doesn’t make them trees. Always be open to the truth. Believe in what you can’t see.”
In retrospect, it’s clear he was trying to prepare me for something. At the time I just remember thinking, Silly, Daddy, of course they’re trees. What else would they be? In my child’s eye, everything was exactly as it appeared. My dad was my rock, my mom and sister were ever-present love and comfort, the sky was blue, and life was good. Until it wasn’t.



Author Bio:
Whitney loves to laugh, play with her kids, bake, and eat french fries -- not always in that order.
Whitney is a multi-award-winning author of romcoms, non-fiction humor, and middle reader fiction. Basically, she writes whatever the voices in her head tell her to.
She lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her husband, Jimmy, where they raise children, chickens, and organic vegetables.
Gold Medal winner at the International Readers' Favorite Awards, 2017.
Silver medal winner at the International Readers' Favorite Awards, 2015, 2016.
Finalist RONE Awards, 2016.
Finalist at the IRFA 2016, 2017.
Finalist at the Book Excellence Awards, 2017
Finalist Top Shelf Indie Book Awards, 2017

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Thursday, June 6, 2019

Review of THE SUNLIGHT PILGRIMS by Jenni Fagan.

The Sunlight Pilgrims
by Jenni Fagan
Hardcover, 310 pages
Published July 19th, 2016 by Hogarth

It's November of 2020, and the world is freezing over. Each day colder than the last. There's snow in Israel, the Thames is overflowing, and an iceberg separated from the Fjords in Norway is expected to drift just off the coast of Scotland. As ice water melts into the Atlantic, frenzied London residents evacuate by the thousands for warmer temperatures down south. But not Dylan. Grieving and ready to build life anew, he heads north to bury his mother's and grandmother's ashes on the Scottish islands where they once lived. 

Hundreds of miles away, twelve-year-old Estella and her survivalist mother, Constance, scrape by in the snowy, mountainous Highlands, preparing for a record-breaking winter. Living out of a caravan, they spend their days digging through landfills, searching for anything with restorative and trading value. When Dylan arrives in their caravan park in the middle of the night, life changes course for Estella and Constance. Though the weather worsens, his presence brings a new light to daily life, and when the ultimate disaster finally strikes, they'll all be ready.

AMAZON / B&N / BAM!

For some reason, I thought this book would be more apocalyptic than it was. It turned out to just be really cold, nothing more. The storyline is nothing spectacular and at times I felt like throwing in the towel when it came to finishing the book. So, why didn't I? Fagan’s ability to describe every small detail was a delight to my imagination. Especially, when it involved the snowy and icy conditions.

The setting is a small caravan park on an island in Scottland. It is told from the viewpoint of 12-year-old Stella along with an older man named Dylan. Dylan was displaced from the only home he has known in London. For reasons that will not be mentioned Dylan ends up living in this remote caravan park in Clachan Fells. Through his eyes, the reader is transported and experiences what it is like to live there, which is quite mundane. Stella’s personal story is thought-provoking and just from this reader's point of view thought the author could have focused more on this controversial topic, giving the reader something deeper to sink their teeth into.

To sum up the review, I found this to be your basic fictional story, telling about the lives of others. It will not make the hair on the back of your neck stand-up like in a thriller or trying to guess who killed the mailman in a mystery. Instead, you get a peek into the lives of ordinary people just trying to survive in this cruel world. I am right down the middle with this story. I liked 50% of the book the other 50% is just meh.       







Jenni Fagan was born in Livingston, Scotland, and lives in London. She graduated from Greenwich University with the highest possible mark for a student of Creative Writing and won a scholarship to the Royal Holloway MFA. A published poet, she has won awards from Arts Council England, Dewar Arts, and Scottish Screen among others. She has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize twice and shortlisted for the Dundee International Book Prize. Jenni works as a writer in residence in hospitals and prisons.

Monday, June 3, 2019

THE SCARECROW & GEORGE C BOOK BLITZ and GIVEAWAY!!!



The Scarecrow & George C 
Mia Kerick 

Publication date: June 3rd, 2019
Genres: Contemporary, LGBTQ+, New Adult, Romance

High school senior Van Liss is barely human. He thinks of himself as a scarecrow—ragged and unnerving, stuck, and destined to spend his life cold and alone. If he ever had feelings, they were stomped out long ago by his selfish mother and her lecherous boyfriend. All he’s been left with is bitter contempt, to which he clings.
With a rough exterior long used to keep the world at bay, Van spooks George Curaco, the handsome new frycook at the diner where he works. But George C senses there is more to the untouchable Van and refuses to stop staring, fascinated by his eccentricity. When Van learns that George C is even more cold, alone, and frightened than himself, Van welcomes him to his empty home. And ends up finding his heart.
Their road to trust is rocky and, at times, even dangerous. And looming evil threatens to keep them apart forever.
Fair warning: You may want to strap in. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.

*All proceeds of this book go to charity: True Colors United.
“True Colors United implements innovative solutions to youth homelessness that focus on the unique experiences of LGBTQ young people.”
EXCERPT:
At least I don’t have to worry about my bosses wanting to get busy with me. They’re too passionately busy with each other. How fucking sweet. “Sounds like a blast. Have fun.”
This is about the extent of small talk I’m capable of. I hurry to my locker, where I pull out my messenger bag, lift the flap, and after untying my apron, I pour in the cash that’s weighing me down. Not that I’m complaining. Then, I pull on my flannel coat and oversized top hat, change into my boots, sling my messenger bag over my shoulder, and head back through the restaurant to the front door.
I hate that I have to come and go through the restaurant. That I have to be the real me—not food server me—in a place where I have a well-defined role. Not a role I’m exactly comfortable with, but one I can deal with. And I can “fake nice” when I’m working, but beyond that, it’s too much of an effort. And when I finally step onto the street and pull in a long-awaited breath of cool air that doesn’t stink of greasy food, he’s beside me.
“Hey, Donovan.”
“Van,” I say and sigh.
“I’m George…George Curaco.”
“Whatever.” I pull the flannel shirt around me tightly and turn away from him. But I have a job to do before I storm off. “You need to leave me the fuck alone, George C…or find a new job.”
I wonder if he steps back or gasps or covers his mouth with his probably greasy hand in response to my rudeness, but there’s no sound of movement.
“You can’t stop me from looking at you. Or asking you if I can carry your bag…to wherever it is you’re going tonight.”
I grit my teeth—it’s a trick I learned when I was a kid. To prevent me from screaming.
“Can I carry your bag?”
My jaw still clamped, I shake my head.
May I carry your bag?”
“Leave me the fuck alone.” Since I’ve voiced everything necessary on the subject of him and me, I brave a final glance. I need evidence that the puppy is down on the sidewalk, writhing in pain, having been kicked by the lying little bitch. But he doesn’t appear even slightly pathetic. The kid is studying me—his eyes seem serious, even sad, as usual, but he’s wearing a smirk. It hits me that George C isn’t sad at all. “It’s just your eyes…they look sad, but they’re not.”
“Just like your words. They make you seem mean…but you’re not.”
Oh, yes, I am!
George C pulls my bag from my shoulder by the long strap. “So where are we going?”
I snatch it back with a hiss. It’s louder than I intended. “I have no clue where you are going, but I am going home. Alone.” George C has succeeded in getting under my weathered, burlap scarecrow skin. This surprises me, as it hasn’t happened in years. I don’t curse at him again or spit on his shoes, which I’ve been known to do. I just storm down Depot Street in the direction of our duplex. To the second-floor suite I claim as mine. The Batcave. My safe space.
“I enjoyed our chat, Van. Really, I did.” His voice is soft and raspy, yet it carries all the way to me, and I’m at least ten steps away already.
It must be the direction of the wind.





Author Bio:
Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children—one in law school, another a professional dancer, a third studying at Mia’s alma mater, Boston College, and her lone son, heading off to college. (Yes, the nest is finally empty.) She has published more than twenty books of LGBTQ romance when not editing National Honor Society essays, offering opinions on college and law school applications, helping to create dance bios, and reviewing scholarship essays. Her husband of twenty-five years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about this, as it’s a sensitive subject.
Mia focuses her stories on the emotional growth of troubled people in complex relationships. She has a great affinity for the tortured hero in literature, and as a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with tales of tortured heroes and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. She is thankful to her wonderful publishers for providing her with an alternate place to stash her stories.
Her books have been featured in Kirkus Reviews magazine, and have won Rainbow Awards for Best Transgender Contemporary Romance and Best YA Lesbian Fiction, a Reader Views’ Book by Book Publicity Literary Award, the Jack Eadon Award for Best Book in Contemporary Drama, an Indie Fab Award, and a Royal Dragonfly Award for Cultural Diversity, a Story Monsters Purple Dragonfly Award for Young Adult e-book Fiction, among other awards.
Mia Kerick is a social liberal and cheers for each and every victory made in the name of human rights. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology. Contact Mia at miakerick@gmail.com or visit at www.miakerickya.com to see what is going on in Mia’s world.



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Sunday, May 12, 2019

TIMELESS SKY Book Blitz & GIVEAWAY!!!

Timeless Sky 
Paulina Ulrich 
(Flightless Bird #4)
Publication date: May 15th, 2019
Genres: Romance, Time-Travel, Young Adult

           When it all ends…
In the tumultuous world of time travel, Livy does her best to adjust to her new life and abilities. Livy and Gregory’s shared dreams have them searching for clues to piece together their lives. In time though, Livy discovers that her lifeline to Gregory isn’t as strong as she thought and she now faces an even worse fate. A voice only she can hear has started to follow her and one mistake could keep her locked permanently in the past.
When people close to her begin to disappear, she and Gregory are compelled to join forces with any allies they have left. With Amelia on the path of revenge, the Society of Seven on the brink, and Damon still missing, the lives of those around them are in jeopardy and not all will survive.
Time is running out. How long will forever last?

Previous books in the series:

EXCERPT:
I took a drink of my water, watching him over the rim of the glass. “Any other theories we have to test?” I set my glass in the sink but something else was already on my mind and it had nothing to do with theories.
“Hmm…nothing comes to mind immediately.” Gregory scratched his chin, faint stubble was starting to appear.
“Good.” I reached up and kissed him, not wanting to feel anything but him. Gregory seemed surprised but I felt his arms squeeze me against his chest. He pulled away, but I was having none of it and with my fingers tethered in his hair, I yanked his mouth back to mine, kissing him earnestly. I made sure my body pressed against every lining of his, pushing against him and making him stumble backwards.




Paulina Ulrich: author, book nerd, & crazy cat lady received her BA in Creative Writing and is the author of the young adult Flightless Bird series, the award nominated young adult Fighting Fate series, and many more stories to come. She also writes nonfiction and has been published in various literary magazines. When she's not writing, reading, drinking copious amounts of tea, or doing author-y stuff, she's out buying way too many cute shoes. Stay up to date with her at www.paulinaulrich.com

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Sunday, May 5, 2019

The Forgotten Ones Book Blitz & GIVEAWAY!!!



The Forgotten Ones 
Andrea Bills 
Publication date: May 6th, 2019
Genres: Adult, Mystery, Romance, Thriller

One small town.
One lost love.

One killer.
Agent Caitlin Cade is called back to her hometown by a serial killer. She’s avoided the town for six years, trying to create a new life away from the painful memories of the sudden passing of her father and a love lost.
Dean Campbell was given a mission that forced him to walk away from the only woman he had ever loved. Just as his mission is over and he can return to her news reaches him that a serial killer has Caitlin caught in a deadly game.

Can Dean handle not being the one in control in order to show Caitlin he’s back for good? Can Caitlin not only face her past but also a killer who always seems two steps ahead of her? As a game of chess plays out using human bodies, secrets and lies come to see the light of day for the first time.
EXCERPT:
All the Gods, all the heavens, all the hells, are within you. —Joseph Campbell
“Have you ever heard the saying; ‘only the forgotten are dead’?”
The young girl shook her head. Tears welled up in her eyes, but they hadn’t fallen yet. This one was tough. She was fighting the terror that was undoubtedly coursing through her body. There was no point in fighting it; her death was inevitable.
“See, I will kill you, but if I remember you, then it’s like you’re not even dead.”
A whimper escaped from the girl. She wasn’t the first one to die, and she wouldn’t be the last. She would be the first to send a message, so her body would be the first one to be discovered unlike the others; the forgotten ones. Their bodies had been left to decay in their shallow graves never to be found. There was an added excitement knowing someone — Agent Caitlin Cade more precisely— would be staring at this girl’s dead body in just a matter of hours.
“Don’t worry baby girl, you won’t be one of them; one of the forgotten ones. You’re going to be found.”
A scream ripped through the room.
“I always like to talk during this next part. I don’t know why. The first few times I thought maybe it was just what was left of my humanity reaching out to offer comfort in the final minutes of their lives, but that’s not it. I haven’t had humanity in years.”
The knife sliced through the air, and the first cut into flesh vibrated to the depths of the killer’s soul. The feeling was orgasmic. Another cut and then another. The smell of fresh blood wafted through the room permeating every single crack and crevice. The beautiful scream that ripped from the girl’s throat was the icing on the cake. Over and over the knife cut into her flesh.
“I saw a therapist once, and she told me that my mind was like a disease. Can you believe that? Someone who went into the business of helping people told me that.”
The girl’s body was lifeless now. There was no point in checking for a pulse. Still, the desire to feel the knife tear through her flesh was uncontrollable. That was the problem with the urges. They were impossible to control. Blood sang a song like the sirens from the old tales, and there was no refusing the call.
“I already knew my mind was diseased, and I’m not going to stop until I’ve infected everyone.”
If only walls could talk, these walls would tell some very horrific stories. Stories that were filled with screams, begging and pleading, but never salvation. This room had never seen salvation.



Andrea is a wife, mother and writer from small town West Virginia. She spends her time while she's not dreaming up lovers and villains alike chasing after her two kids and husband.

Her overactive imagination and her husband's wacky dreams attribute to her love of the written word. Guilty pleasures include reading all night and Reese Cups.


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Monday, April 29, 2019



Forgiven Are the Starry-Eyed 
Christine Doré Miller 
Published by: Evernight Teen
Publication date: April 26th, 2019
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult


Naïve sixteen-year-old Andrea Cavanaugh is elated when Josh, a charismatic, bright-eyed piano prodigy, becomes her first boyfriend. But the closer she gets to him, the more she realizes that he is not the boy she first fell for. In its poignancy and emotional darkness, Forgiven Are the Starry-Eyed takes you deep into the delicate and devastating web of shame that spirals from the depths of dating violence when dreamy teenage love turns dark. Andrea must find not only an escape, but a belief that she is even worthy of freedom.






PURCHASE

EXCERPT:
My eyelids closed as if they were being drawn down by sluggish, unhurried weights. When I forced them open after several seemingly endless moments, nothing had changed. I could still make out a blurry image of Josh standing nearby, Mr. Thompson’s hands clenched firmly on Josh’s shoulders from behind. There was a crowd, I think, and muffled voices. The steel school locker felt cold against my back and I recognized the familiar feeling that lately seemed to just dwell and ache in my bones. Fear, I think it was, mixed with just enough madness to keep the blood racing through my veins … fast. Too fast.
“Why did you do that, Andrea?” Josh shouted in my direction.
My eyes fell closed again. I don’t remember what else he said. I just remember the feeling of each overly pronounced syllable piercing the air while he said it. I stared through the darkness that danced behind my heavy eyelids. What had I done?
I tried to pry open my hazy eyes to examine the faces of the expanding crowd as they stood, mouths agape. I only recognized a few. There were hardcover music books sprawled open on the tile floor at my feet. Confused, I looked to Josh, but the heavy silence of the room deafened any words he may have been saying. I gripped the ends of my soft, thin hair between my slender fingers and waited. Each thought sunk deeper than the last.
There was a poster taped sloppily against the locker behind me. I turned my head to face it and focused. The ends were curled up and there were ripples in the masking tape adorned to the edges. “Oakwood High School Invitational—TONIGHT” it read in handwritten purple block letters. There was a pixelated saxophone image pasted underneath the words, “Brought to you by Mr. Thompson and the Oakwood High Jazz Band.” I brought my hand up to trace the edges. The poster board felt crisp and thick under my fingertips. I could smell the aftermath of the permanent marker. The loud reverberating voice behind me got softer until it resembled a deep echo I could easily ignore. I started to pick at the tape from the bottom left corner of the poster until I felt the sticky residue ball up underneath my fingernail.
Suddenly the life reentered my body in one abrupt breath when I felt a strong tug on my arm. I turned and saw Ethan Marks. Everyone else was gone. Had it been minutes this time? Hours?
“Andrea! Come on,” he barked at me, interlacing my arm, tucking it quickly under his. He jerked me to a standing position and pulled me down the hall, speeding up his gate as I stumbled to catch up.
“Where’s Josh?” I asked worriedly, but he didn’t answer. We were silent as we walked through the empty hallway. I lifted my gaze, trying to catch Ethan’s eye, trying to read his thoughts. His light blue eyes, usually sparkling with laughter, were steely and somber as he charged forward, dragging me with him, away from the wreckage I’d caused.
He stopped short and took a deep breath. His eyes were unyielding and dismal as they studied me, and slowly his frustration melted into a deep sadness.
“What happened, Andrea? What was that back there?”
“I don’t know…” My voice began breaking. My thoughts were muddled beyond recognition and I couldn’t form the right words, or any words, to explain.
Ethan wrapped himself around me in a gentle, firm embrace. It felt kind. And warm. And wonderfully different. My muscles unclenched for the first time in months, and I didn’t know I was crying until I tasted the salt as it stained my face. I buried my head into Ethan’s chest as he tightened his hold on me. I wanted him to say something, to tell me everything would be all right, but we both knew better. So we just stood there, Ethan supporting me as I clasped the back of his cotton t-shirt between my fingers.
After a few minutes, I fully returned to my body as my breathing calmed. I steadied my stance and took a step backward, shakily holding Ethan’s forearms as I regained my balance. Wiping smudged mascara from my pale face, I met Ethan’s eyes and quickly looked down, fixating on a crack in the tile below me.
“Hey,” he started, “Andrea … it’s…”
“I’m okay. Ethan, I’m sorry. I’m sorry you had to … I’m sorry I … ugh your shirt.” I motioned to the tear stains on his light green tee that crept from his chest to his shoulder.
“Oh God, don’t worry about that. Andie, I just…”
“It’s fine.” I wiped my face and took a deep breath. “Thanks,” I said, squeezing Ethan’s hand and looking in his eyes sincerely, so he knew I meant it. “I should go. But thanks.” I shook my head and turned around to walk back into the havoc and face what I had done. I felt Ethan staring at me as I left. He was just another person whose life would’ve been better if he hadn’t met me. I swallowed, took a breath, and kept walking.
It was over for now, that latest incident, and there was no way to tell when there would be another one … but there would definitely be another one. I was too broken for it to be any other way.


Author Bio:
Christine lives in the Los Angeles area with her husband and their two children. She works full-time as a senior marketing manager for a large media company and holds a Bachelor's of Business Administration degree from Western Michigan University where she studied marketing. Growing up in the chilly midwest, she developed a deep passion for dramatic writing and alternative music at an early age, which still peaks through in her adult-corporate-mom life today. Forgiven Are the Starry-Eyed is Christine's debut novel.

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