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Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Related By Murder by Jo A. Hiestand - Book Tour - Book Sale - Book Trailer - Guest Post - Giveaway - Enter Daily!

Hey, lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host Jo A. Hiestand and her new book, “Related By Murder”!  For other stops on her Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Jo and to increase your chances of winning!

This eBook is on SALE during the book tour for ONLY $0.99!!!  See below for more details.

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!

Related By Murder

by Jo A. Hiestand

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GENRE: British Mystery

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BLURB:

From the moment ex-police detective Michael McLaren arrives at his friend’s house, he’s plunged into a nightmare of a case. Two men, hanged a year apart, each killed on a Good Friday. A barrister. A solicitor. Related careers. Related by murder. Related motives?

Pottery shards, a torn newspaper article, and biscuits are found in each man’s pocket. What do they signify? And the blackmail letters Melanie receives… Are they related to the murders, or are they separate, terrifying in their own way?

Professions, calendar date, McLaren’s attack. Could it all be entwined? Or is the motive for murder something else, something so secret that keeping it is worth attempting a third one?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

EXCERPT ONE:

McLaren had been there during the daylight hours on his previous visit. Now, at night, the place was eerie, mystical. The circle—one hundred yards in circumference—had originally held forty stones, but now just thirty-three remained. None were upright. Still, if he used his imagination he could easily conjure up the feeling of ancient cultures.

He walked farther into the circle, the grass damp and clinging to his boots, the odors of sodden soil and sheep droppings mixing with wet stones. A small puddle, most likely left from the evening’s rain, glittered from the moonlight that seemed trapped within the dark water, and he stepped around it. A bit farther on, he came to what he hoped would be a good vantage point. He knelt behind one of the taller stones, though none of them were more than a yard tall. From this perspective not only was he hidden if anyone approached from the lane, but also distanced enough from the entrance so no one would suspect he was there.

Minutes passed. The wind picked up, stirring the dampness in the air and pushing it into McLaren’s bones. Or at least that’s how it felt. Even his sweatshirt felt incredibly thin and unequal to keeping him warm. He chastised himself for not wearing his jacket, and rubbed his arms.

A barn owl soared silently overhead, its ghostly-white feathers oddly appropriate in this strange-feeling landscape. It’s appropriate, McLaren thought, watching the bird sail over a copse of trees. We’re both out hunting.

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BOOK TRAILER:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GUEST POST:

Some of My Favorite Items in My Office:

What a fun topic! Wow, where to begin… The space contains so many special things… My office is basically three of my worlds combined into one: writing/books, English police stuff, and music. It’s a fairly large room, intended to be the master bedroom, but it has a cozy feel because I’ve filled it with many favorite items. The main thing that is obvious on entering the room is the five bookcases crammed with reference books--writing, police procedure, British wildlife and maps and British towns, a British dictionary, and books on topics such as poison, guns, British slang, and British customs. Besides being essential to my English mystery novel writing, they are fun to browse through, especially the maps!

Another item I especially like is a photo of the internationally known folk group The McCalmans and me, taken at my parent’s house. That hangs on the wall above my computer. I acted as their St Louis agent once, setting up two weeks of singing venues in the area.  In addition to the Macs, I have a photo of two of my English police friends.

What else… I have something fairly unique, I think…at least for an office. I made a 4’x4’ wall hanging of tartan fabric squares. I used tartans of six of the sixteen Scottish clans to which I’m related, and sewed them together in a diagonal pattern. That was a work of love as well as fun. It occupies the space above one bookcase. Opposite that is a large poster of The New World Renaissance Band—all the members signed it for me.

A second poster I treasure is of a two-piano concert three years ago (gosh, how time flies!). The program included the world premier of a four-movement piece of ‘character sketches and scenes’ from my McLaren mystery book Arrested Flight. Robert Chamberlin, a nationally-known composer, read the book and wrote the companion music. Needless to say, I was very excited!

Another favorite thing in my office is my Write Spite doll.  It’s a “voodoo” doll, eleven inches tall by nine inches wide.  Two straight pins are included with it!  My friend made it for me ages ago when I kept getting rejection slips from publishers, the idea being that I’d print the publisher’s name on slips of paper and pin them to the “voodoo” doll and frown at it!  Of course it’s a joke, but it was a great frustration reliever, as you can imagine!  What a hoot that little doll is.  Luckily, I don’t use it anymore for its intended purpose, but it’s still fun to look at besides making me laugh.

These are all wonderful items, but perhaps the things that mean the most to me are my two English police hats. I have a Bobby helmet and an inspector’s hat.  They’re real. I got them on different trips to Britain. The hat I got from an inspector I was interviewing in Buxton, England. No, he didn’t take it off his head; it was an old one he had (still nice looking, but it was outdated due to a new design for the hat and therefore not officially wearable). So, he gave it to me. Getting that thing home in my luggage, without squishing it, was a feat, but I managed it. The Bobby helmet is new. A detective sergeant gave that to me when I visited him in Derbyshire, a ‘Welcome to England and the wonderful world of police’ gift. Now, normally I’m not much of a blow-my-own-horn person, but I should get an award for getting that into my suitcase and toting it back to the States! (Secret: I donated a bunch of my clothes to Oxfam to make space for the helmet. I still wonder how the recipient of the University of Kentucky jacket liked it: it had the UK logo on the front!)

That’s about it, I guess. I do have more beloved items in the room, and they all mean something very special, but they probably wouldn’t be interesting to talk about…assuming, of course, that the above-mentioned items were interesting to read about!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

AUTHOR BIO:

I grew up reading Dumas, Twain, duMaurier, Dickens and the Brontes.  I loved the atmosphere of those books. Add the Basil Rathbone-Nigel Bruce movies and the moods of 1940s/50s movies like Brief Encounter, Night Must Fall, and The Thirty-Nine Steps, and I knew I wanted to write mysteries, and the books had to be set in Britain. That was a must even though I knew only what I’d seen in the movies and read in the novels.  But the British pull was tenacious.  Three years ago I discovered that I have literally centuries and centuries of English, Scottish and Welsh ancestry.  Do genes mean anything?

My first visit to England was during my college years and that cemented my joy of Things British.  Since then, I’ve been lured back nearly a dozen times, and lived there for a year during my professional folksinging stint.

What do I write?  Well, at the moment, I write two British mystery series: the McLaren Mysteries and the Peak District Mysteries.  The McLaren novels feature ex-police detective Michael McLaren, who investigates cold case murders on his own.  The Peak District books feature a different British custom/tradition that is the backbone of each book’s plot.  These are a combo cozy/police procedural, and members of the Derbyshire Constabulary CID Murder team work these cases.

I combined my love of writing, mysteries, music, and board games by co-inventing a mystery-solving treasure-hunting game, P.I.R.A.T.E.S.

I founded the Greater St. Louis Chapter of the international mystery writers/readers organization Sisters in Crime, serving as its first president.

In 2001, I graduated from Webster University with a BA degree in English and departmental honors.  I live in the St. Louis, MO area with my cat, Tennyson, and way too many kilts.

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CONNECT WITH JO:

Website:

https://www.johiestand.com

Blog:

https://www.johiestand.com/blog

Newsletter:

https://www.johiestand.com/contact

Email:

johiestand@gmail.com

Facebook Fan Page:

https://www.facebook.com/Britmysteries

Facebook Personal Page:

https://www.facebook.com/jo.hiestand.3

Twitter:

https://www.twitter.com/JoHiestand

Pinterest:

https://www.pinterest.com/johiestand

Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/joahiestand

YouTube:

https://www.youtube.com/user/MysteryAuthorinSTL

BookBub Author Page:

https://www.bookbub.com/authors/jo-a-hiestand

BookBub Book Page:

https://www.bookbub.com/books/hide-and-seek-the-mclaren-mysteries-book-12-by-jo-a-hiestand

Goodreads Author Page:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/635131.Jo_A_Hiestand

Goodreads Book Page:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/54485512-hide-and-seek

Amazon Author Page:

https://amzn.to/2VDhnca

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BOOK BUY LINKS & BOOK SALE INFO:

**The Related By Murder eBook is on SALE during the book tour for ONLY $0.99!!!**

Amazon Kindle eBook:

https://amzn.to/3814P68

Amazon Paperback:

https://amzn.to/2MG4VIU

Barnes and Noble Nook eBook:

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/related-by-murder-jo-a-hiestand/1138862009

Kobo eBook:

https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/related-by-murder

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GIVEAWAY INFO:

Jo will be awarding a $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.

Friday, February 26, 2021

The Au Pair and the Beast by Aurora Russell - Book Tour - Guest Post - Giveaway - Enter Daily!

Bonjour, lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host Aurora Russell and her new book, “The Au Pair and the Beast”!  For other stops on her Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Aurora and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!

The Au Pair and the Beast

by Aurora Russell

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GENRE: Contemporary Romance

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BLURB:

Veronica’s new job comes with a darling little boy, a Gothic castle and…a beast?

When recently laid-off Francophile Veronica Carson is recommended for an au pair job by the elegant leader of her French conversation group, she isn’t sure what to expect—but a Gothic castle deep in the wilds of Maine is certainly not it. Still, she’s drawn in by her joyful little charge, Jean-Philippe, and even more drawn to his brooding father.

Ruthlessly successful businessman Alain Reynard has loved before and has no wish to repeat the painful experience. The tragedy of his recent past is still fresh in his mind, and he wants nothing to do with his son’s lovely new au pair. Despite his best efforts, though, he can’t seem to get her off his mind.

A passionate romance begins to blossom but is put to the test when painful reminders of Alain’s past return. As ugly rumors swirl, the truths of the past and the present collide. Veronica must decide if Alain really is a beast and, if so, whether she can love him enough to break through the dark memories and secrets that tether him to what once was.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

EXCERPT ONE:

Monsieur Reynard was angry—furious, even—so that his eyes were thunderous and every line of his tall frame was taut with barely leashed rage.

“Who are you working for? Who sent you?” he demanded.

“What? I’m working for you—or I thought I was. Madame Montreaux recommended me.” Veronica was genuinely confused and a little freaked out, but she tried to be patient. Maybe something had happened to damage his memory in his recent accident? Still, the look he was giving her sent a chill down her spine. In spite of his injuries, this was a powerful, dangerous man—especially now, when the usually-charming fa├žade was down.

“Yeah, sure. What newspaper? Website? Who are you sending pictures to?” He barked out the questions, stepping closer—so close that Veronica could smell his spicy cologne and feel the heat radiating off of him. And how the heck had he gotten down here from the house so fast?

Her mouth fell open. “I’m not working for anyone. I was just sending pictures to my friend. You can read them,” she offered, then added with a snap, “although I don’t appreciate your taking my phone from me.”

He glanced at the partially typed message. “Proof of life?” He raised his eyebrow.

“It’s…ah, an inside joke,” she explained.

He scrolled up and she swore he nearly smiled in spite of himself. “Locked in a dungeon, eh?”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GUEST POST:

Carpe Diem: How Two Little Words Led Me to Adventure, Happiness, and Becoming a Published Author

First of all, thank you very much to Ally for having me as a guest on Fabulous and Brunette! Very excited to be here!

The most inspirational phrase that I have ever seen or heard has to be “carpe diem” (seize the day)…and I would say without exaggeration that it has guided all of the best decisions in my life, including the decision to become an author. For me, I guess this is the philosophy of saying yes…yes to risks, yes to opportunity, and living life to the fullest. This isn’t to say that it has always worked out for me – far from it! I have known disappointment and heartbreak with the best of them, but I have always felt good about having tried my hardest. I have put myself out there and sometimes it has really worked, and that’s a beautiful thing!

Right after I graduated from high school, I had the chance to spend a year in France as an exchange student. It was scary…no, terrifying – I had grown up in a small town in the Midwest, and I was painfully shy to boot – but it was also a chance to exponentially expand my knowledge of a different culture, of the world, and of myself. Carpe diem. I went for it, and it shaped me into someone much more confident in herself and her abilities than I had ever been before, and it also gave me a lifelong love of French language and culture that you will see woven into several of my novels, including my latest, The Au Pair and the Beast. Alain, the dark and mysterious hero, and Jean-Philippe, his young son, are both French, and the household keeps French customs and traditions.

Later, after having my heart not only broken, but shredded into tiny little pieces and then trampled and lit on fire, I was almost certain that I would never love again. I never wanted to put myself out there again to risk the same sort of pain, the same rejection. But deep inside of me, the little voice whispering “carpe diem” just wouldn’t give up, and finally, I listened to it again and opened myself up to new romance. I won’t say that I didn’t meet a few frogs, toads, poison dart frogs, and probably a salamander or newt along the way…but eventually, I met my now-husband. I cannot imagine life without having taking that risk.

The philosophy of “carpe diem” helped me become a published author, too. I have always loved writing, since I was very young, but I never thought that I would be a real author. Funnily enough, I was at a wedding on Cape Cod about ten years ago when I happened to meet another guest who was hosting an online novel contest. She gave me the details, and carpe diem, I went for it. I finished my first complete romance novel in about six weeks, and I was a semi-finalist in the contest. Although I didn’t win, it was a wonderful experience, and prompted me to submit to agents and publishers. There’s a long story about overcoming a lot of rejection there, too, and maybe a hint of the other philosophy that might be my second-favorite, “illegitimi non carborundi” (loosely translated as “don’t let the bastards grind you down” but no less true for all that it might not be grammatically correct Latin). At the end of day, I am truly living my dreams, and writing books that are just a ton of fun to write!

If I have the chance to go on a daytrip or vacation, business trip or conference, carpe diem, I will do it! I have volunteered for special projects, volunteered at events and museums, studied four different languages, taken cooking and art classes, and met amazing people and learned countless interesting facts along the way. I certainly think this philosophy has enriched my writing, especially with the wide range of settings in The Au Pair and Beast and in my Anywhere and Always series, but more importantly, it enriches my life and I hope that it enriches the lives of my husband and children, too. Whenever you have the chance, I say, “seize the day!”

********

Check out these beautiful pictures from Aurora’s recent adventures in Vermont, Maine, and New Hampshire!!!



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AUTHOR BIO:

Aurora is originally from the frozen tundra of the upper-Midwest (ok, not frozen all the time!) but now loves living in New England with her real-life hero/husband, two wonderfully silly sons, and one of the most extraordinary cats she has ever had the pleasure to meet. But she still goes back to the Midwest to visit, just never in January. She doesn't remember a time that she didn't love to read, and has been writing stories since she learned how to hold a pencil. She has always liked the romantic scenes best in every book, story, and movie, so one day she decided to try her hand at writing her own romantic fiction, which changed her life in all the best ways.

Find out more about Aurora, upcoming releases, and news at the links below!

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CONNECT WITH AURORA:

Website:

https://aurorarussellauthor.wordpress.com

Email:

aurorarussellauthor@gmail.com

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/arussellromance

Twitter:

https://twitter.com/arussellromance

BookBub Author Page:

https://www.bookbub.com/authors/aurora-russell

BookBub Book Page:

https://www.bookbub.com/books/the-au-pair-and-the-beast-by-aurora-russell

Goodreads Author Page:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14316582.Aurora_Russell

Goodreads Book Page:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/56522356-the-au-pair-and-the-beast

Amazon Author Page:

https://amzn.to/37PD93Z

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BOOK BUY LINKS:

Amazon Kindle eBook:

https://amzn.to/3aW90BT

Amazon Paperback:

https://amzn.to/2Nz865K

Apple Books eBook:

https://books.apple.com/us/book/the-au-pair-and-the-beast/id1545729100

Barnes and Noble NOOK eBook:

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-au-pair-and-the-beast-aurora-russell/1138483939?ean=9781839434754

Barnes and Noble Paperback:

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-au-pair-and-the-beast-aurora-russell/1138483939?ean=9781839439490

The Book Depository Paperback:

https://www.bookdepository.com/The-Au-Pair-and-the-Beast-Aurora-Russell/9781839439490

BAM! Books-A-Million Paperback:

https://www.booksamillion.com/p/Au-Pair-Beast/Aurora-Russell/9781839439490

First for Romance eBook:

https://www.firstforromance.com/book/the-au-pair-and-the-beast

First for Romance Paperback:

https://www.firstforromance.com/book/the-au-pair-and-the-beast-print

Google Play eBook:

https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Aurora_Russell_The_Au_Pair_and_the_Beast?id=IJEREAAAQBAJ

Kobo eBook:

https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-au-pair-and-the-beast

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GIVEAWAY INFO:

Aurora will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Reaper: Aftermath by Jonathan Pongratz - Book Blast - Giveaway - Enter Daily!

Hi, lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host Jonathan Pongratz and his new book, “Reaper: Aftermath”!  For other stops on his Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Jonathan and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!

Reaper: Aftermath

by Jonathan Pongratz

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GENRE: Sci-Fi/Horror/YA

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BLURB:

Five years have passed since the Reapers invaded Earth and tore it asunder. Gregory, his mother, Trent, and their group of scavengers hunt the decimated wastelands for survival.

But when a sudden Reaper attack forces Gregory through a Reaper door, he finds himself in a bizarre place, one that may provide answers to the Reapers’ past and where they came from.

Can Gregory put together the pieces of the past and find his way home, or will he just become another human casualty in the lost war against the Reapers?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

EXCERPT ONE:

I crouched behind a row of old dusty cars beside my mom and two other sharpshooters, my body trembling. Don't freak out. Be brave. Remember your training.

I took a deep breath and dared a peek ahead between two cars. Across the street was a deserted grocery store covered in grime and soot. It was a small shop, maybe two or three times the size of an average gas station. A bunch of old, rotted wooden planks covered the windows, but the front entrance was untouched. Whoever had been here was either dead inside or long gone. No one in their right mind would leave their home unfortified, not anymore.

All was quiet except for the wind, but I knew better. We all did. Any second and the Reapers could be right on us. Though they never came out during the day, we couldn’t leave anything to chance.

Mom pulled out her walkie. “Proceeding with root-out of potential Reapers.” She retrieved an oddly-shaped ball constructed from cans, tins, and several small bells we called chatter boxes from her supply bag and hurled it over her head.

The chatter box clunked loudly on the ground, bouncing before stopping in front of the seemingly-empty store. For a couple moments we all sat there, waiting for any sign of Reapers.

Mom’s walkie crackled to life. “Patricia, I think we should--”

“Quiet!” Mom hissed. “I think I hear something.”

I couldn’t hear anything, but there was definitely a difference in the air, like it was charged somehow. Just like the basement five years ago. Images of the past filled my mind: My little sister Imogen, the electrified feeling down in the basement, the Reaper’s sudden appearance. I shook off my thoughts and edged close to my mother.

“You’re right, something’s coming.”

Mom nodded, her gaze fixed on the grocery store. “Be brave, Gregory. If you have to, fall back.”

I shook my head. There was no way I was gonna miss out on this.

Her eyes widened, and she gripped her walkie once more. “Reapers, incoming!”

I drew my Glock from my holster, turned the safety off, and tried to look through the abandoned store’s smudged entrance. It was dark inside, but I could see two hulking figures scrambling to the front of the store at breakneck speed.

Oh shi--

Two Reapers crashed through the entrance in an explosion of glass that blasted shards in a thousand directions. As the projectiles clinked on the ground I stared at the monsters before us, a chill running down my spine.

Large, festering boils covered their reddish, emaciated bodies. They stood tall on two clawed feet, but could easily switch to all fours for speed, doubling the danger of their razor sharp appendages. The Reapers opened their mouths, revealing multiple layers of jagged, pointy teeth as they gave ear-piercing shrieks of rage.

A grin spread across my face. Time to die, assholes.

I aimed, then pulled my trigger as deafening gunshots came from my left and right. We’d hit the one on the right several times. A thick, black liquid oozed from its wounds, but it was still in fighting shape and pretty freakin’ pissed based on the hideous snarl on its face.

The aggravated Reaper leaped forward on all fours, bounding over the car we were hiding behind and landing in front of the sharpshooter furthest from me. It gave a mighty roar, snatching him up and throwing him like a rag doll. He went flying, landing on a nearby car’s windshield with a loud crack. The monster eyed the other sharpshooter with furious, predatory yellow eyes.

Shit, shit, shit! I lunged towards the Reaper as I targeted it, then yanked on my trigger.  It gave a high-pitched cry of pain and staggered back a step. Damn it! I’d only hit its shoulder. Its hateful gaze was now focused on me.

A sudden gunblast boomed from my comrade, and the Reaper fell to the ground, unmoving. A large pool of black sludge gathered underneath its head where the bullet had exited.

Before I could rejoice in the kill, Mom shouted nearby. I spun around. She was battling the other Reaper in front of the grocery store with a long knife in hand. She had deep cuts on her arms and legs, while the monster sported several nonfatal gunshot wounds. I tried to aim for the Reaper but they were moving too fast, desperately circling one another for an advantage. One wrong move and I’d shoot my own mother.

The Reaper took a wide-arching swipe at her, but she dodged to the side, cutting its leg as she went. The monster screeched and turned to attack, but mom slid between its legs and was now behind it. Point blank, Mom whipped out her revolver and fired three shots into the back of the Reaper’s head. It fell to the ground, twitching in its final death throes.

Mom lifted her combat boot and stomped on its head with a sickening crunch. The Reaper didn’t move anymore. She spat on it, then pulled out her walkie as I approached. “All clear. Torch the bodies.”

I glanced back. Twenty yards away behind another row of dead cars, our small group of noncombatants emerged. Mom strolled towards the grocery store and I jogged to catch up to her, eager to see what was inside. Whatever it was, it had better be worth it.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

AUTHOR BIO:

Jonathan Pongratz is a writer and author of captivating horror, fantasy, and other speculative fiction stories. When he’s not writing, he’s busy being a bookworm, video game junkie, and karaoke vocalist. A former resident of Dallas, he currently resides in Kansas City with his Halloween cat Ajax. By day he works magic in finance, by night he creates dark and mesmerizing worlds.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

CONNECT WITH JONATHAN:

Website:

https://www.jonathanpongratz.com

Blog:

https://jonathanpongratz.com/blog

Newsletter:

https://jonathanpongratz.com/subscribe

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/jonathanpongratz

Tumblr:

https://jonathanpongratz.tumblr.com

BookBub Author Page:

https://www.bookbub.com/profile/jonathan-pongratz

BookBub Book Page:

https://www.bookbub.com/books/reaper-aftermath-by-jonathan-pongratz

Goodreads Author Page:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18919293.Jonathan_Pongratz

Goodreads Book Page:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/56648682-reaper

Amazon Author Page:

https://amzn.to/2Mv59T6

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BOOK BUY LINKS:

Amazon Kindle eBook:

https://amzn.to/2NAK76a

Amazon Paperback:

https://amzn.to/37LH8P2

Apple Books eBook:

https://books.apple.com/us/book/id1550231822

Barnes and Noble Paperback:

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/reaper-jonathan-pongratz/1138649891

The Book Depository Paperback:

https://www.bookdepository.com/Reaper-Jonathan-Pongratz-Mario-Lampic/9780578827445

BAM! Books-A-Million Paperback:

https://www.booksamillion.com/p/Reaper/Jonathan-Pongratz/9780578827445

Kobo eBook:

https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/reaper-aftermath

Universal Book Buy Links (eBooks/Paperbacks):

https://buy.bookfunnel.com/3asmrg39g7

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GIVEAWAY INFO:

Jonathan will be awarding a $15 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

The Seven Spires by Russell Archey - Book Tour - Guest Post - Giveaway - Enter Daily!

Hi, lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host Russell Archey and his new book, “The Seven Spires”!  For other stops on his Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Russell and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!

The Seven Spires

by Russell Archey

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GENRE: Fantasy

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BLURB:

An incredible high fantasy adventure set in a world based on familiar fairy tales, folklore, and mythology, "The Seven Spires" is an epic story of dragons, magic, conquering evil, and discovering magnificent new places.

When a fearsome creature known as Wyvern begins terrorizing Emrallt, one of the seven realms of the continent of Septer, a group of heroes are brought together seemingly by fate to rally against him. A prince, warrior, wizard, and mysterious, sorceress-like sybil try to discover why a common maiden could be the best chance their kingdoms have against Wyvern’s growing forces that threaten to dominate each and every one of the ancient, arcane spires that bind their kingdoms, and world, together.

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EXCERPT ONE:

Wyvern recognized their broken language and knew that White-eye spoke of more than just a town guard or good-natured passerby. Ratlings cared little for the difference between common humans, merchants, and even nobility. It was only a difference in what goods they could pilfer; however, when a ratling described one as ‘important,’ that often meant ‘royalty’.

“The important man—what did he look like?” Wyvern asked.

The two deplorable rodents looked up at him in confusion. They looked through arms held in front of their faces as if toward off a pending strike. Wyvern leaned forward on his forelimbs.

“You said he was ‘important.’ He wore blue clothes. What did he look like? Face, hair—what?” he growled with small tongues of fire licking around his teeth.

“Also pretty, like lady!” Moss Blossom squealed. “Nice clothes! Long blue vest with another tower—different shiny stone, blue shiny stone…”

Wyvern growled in frustration. The Blue Prince of Avallonis. The little fop could bring Wyvern no end of misery; an army’s worth of misery to be exact. Especially if he had his sights set on the Maiden.

“He threatened you?” Wyvern asked of them.

“Y-yes, with sharp metal. He threaten blood,” White-eye answered. Moss Blossom nodded her head vigorously in agreement.

“Indeed, you had no choice but to flee,” Wyvern said. “But, rules are rules…” he added with menace.

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GUEST POST:

What Did You Learn from Writing This Book?

I’ve had some short stories published in the past, but this is my first published novel—and it was a learning experience on every front.

Writing a book is deeply personal. You love it one moment, hate it at others, but in the end, it’s always wonderful to have that finished manuscript; characters and places and events that simply didn’t exist before. I’ve been told by some, “Hey, you finished a book and that’s huge!” To an extent, I completely agree. Finishing a manuscript is a big accomplishment; however, I’ve since from this book that there’s so much more to making your book something memorable. Getting your ideas on paper is a great feat, but refining those ideas and making them grab your readers by their imaginations and emotions is much more complicated! I’m still learning how to best build my worlds and characters not just in my head, but also on the page so that readers enjoy it to the fullest. This is something that time and typing will help, I’m sure. This leads me to my next learning experience…

The process of sending a book through a publisher is so intriguing. From the moment you pitch it, you hope it sounds as good to them as it did to you. Having your work rejected is always heart-rending, but I try to remember that I’m trying, at the time, to impress one person. My plot may not hit that person just right, and so I have to try someone else. And then someone else….then someone else. But I have to keep trying! Most of my experience in this area is limited to pitching short stories. I have to admit, working with 5 Prince Publishing has made this process so much less stressful than I think it could be.

Once the script is accepted, I didn’t know how much was involved with actually getting your book printed. Working with an editor, and the editing process, in general, fascinates me. I’d never been able to be a professional editor myself and I greatly appreciate all they do. The number of passes you go through your book with an editor to iron it out is incredible. Then there are the cover selections, although this is one of my favorite parts. Getting to see multiple interpretations to wrap up your book was one of my favorite parts of the process.

The biggest thing I learned (honestly, that I’m still learning) is the marketing aspect. Your book is one among thousands…hundreds of thousands. Getting people to notice your book, let alone buy it and read it, is the biggest hurdle I’ve faced in my writing adventure. Really, I think it’s the biggest question facing authors in general who want their work to be read!

I love learning, though, and if I get to keep learning about all areas of my writing then I’m pretty happy with that!

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AUTHOR BIO:

Russell Archey has been writing since he was old enough to hold a pencil. His love for narratives, world-building, and story-telling has fed into nearly every aspect of his life: from his video and board game hobbies to pressing his most cherished books onto his unfortunate children (who will, one day, read the Lord of the Rings trilogy whether they like it or not). When he's not creating new worlds and horrifying things to threaten them with destruction, he's bringing other author's fantastic works to life as an audiobook narrator, spending time with his two children, and pressing his dear wife's eternal patience with his quirky habits.”

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CONNECT WITH RUSSELL:

Website:

http://www.5princebooks.com/russellarchey.html

Email:

authorrussellarchey@gmail.com

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/russellarcheyauthor

Twitter:

https://twitter.com/RSArchey

Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/RussArchey

BookBub Book Page:

https://www.bookbub.com/books/the-seven-spires-by-russell-archey

Goodreads Author Page:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19030583.Russell_Archey

Goodreads Book Page:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/55353537-the-seven-spires

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BOOK BUY LINKS:

Amazon Kindle eBook:

https://amzn.to/2ZVIPF2

Amazon Paperback:

https://amzn.to/2NKAG3Q

Apple Books eBook:

https://books.apple.com/us/book/the-seven-spires/id1532079456

Barnes and Noble NOOK eBook:

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-seven-spires-russell-archey/1137671700?ean=2940162731535

Barnes and Noble Paperback:

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-seven-spires-russell-archey/1137671700?ean=9781631122514

The Book Depository Paperback:

https://www.bookdepository.com/The-Seven-Spires-Russell-Archey/9781631122514

BAM! Books-A-Million Paperback:

https://www.booksamillion.com/p/Seven-Spires/Russell-Archey/9781631122514

Google Play eBook:

https://play.google.com/store/books/details?pcampaignid=books_read_action&id=Jlf9DwAAQBAJ

Kobo eBook:

https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-seven-spires

Smashwords eBook:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1043473

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GIVEAWAY INFO:

Russell will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.