Thursday, February 25, 2016

Meet Linda K. Sienkiewicz, Author of Women's Fiction and Contemporary Romance for #EggcerptExchange




In our ongoing #EggcerptExchange I'm featuring Linda Sienkiewicz (and the true Polish way to say it is shin-KEH-vich). For diehard Jim Morrison and Doors fans, Linda has a beautiful story about visiting Jim's grave in Paris on her blog. What a story, I loved it, as a kindred soul, a history buff who has been known to sneak around historic sites after closing (Carisbrooke Castle) and touch every historical artifact I see...and I've gotten into a bit of trouble doing that (touching Chopin's piano keys, for instance).

Meet Linda and read about her debut novel IN THE CONTEXT OF LOVE.

Linda attributes her creative drive to her artistic mother, who taught her to sew, and her father, who let her monkey around with the gadgets in his workshop. Her poetry, short stories and art have been published in more than fifty literary journals. She has a poetry chapbook award from Bottom Dog Press and an MFA from The University of Southern Maine. She lives in Michigan where she and her husband like to spoil their grandchildren then send them back home.



In In the Context of Love, Angelica Schirrick wonders how her life could have gone so far off-track. She remembers her forbidden high school romance with Joe Vadas, the son of Hungarian immigrants. Scandal tore them apart, Joe disappeared, and shes spent years trying to recover from the split. Shortly after, a devastating family secret shattered her sense of self, leading to a multitude of bad choices that include marrying a man with a missing finger and secrets of his own. She leaves her husband and, with two children in tow, begins a journey of self-discovery that leads her back home to Ohio. She must find a way to put the past to rest before she can be open to life and a second chance at love. And what if Joe returns? Will he help her or tear her family further apart?

Jacquelyn Mitchard, author of #1 NYTimes Bestseller, DEEP END OF THE OCEAN, says: With humor and tenderness, but without blinking, Linda K. Sienkiewicz turns her eye on the predator-prey savannah of the young and still somehow hopeful.

Bonnie Jo Campbell, author of Michigan Notable Book MOTHERS TELL YOUR DAUGHTERS, says Sienkiewiczs powerful and richly detailed debut novel is at once a love story, a cautionary tale, and an inspirational journey. It should be required reading for all wayward daughters, and their mothers, too.

Eggcerpt:

I had convinced myself I could stomach seeing Gavin since social services told me it was in the childrens best interest to see their father. Despite his trespasses, I knew they missed him. They needed to see for themselves where he was, and that he was in one piece, but I certainly didnt need or want any such assurances. The closer we got to the Madison Correctional Center, the sicker I felt. I knew it wasnt going to be a picnic, but Im not sure I can convey how awful it was.
Michelle, age ten, remained glued to my side, chewing her lip. Jude fidgeted like a typical eight-year-old. Id brought games and books for them to share with Gavin, which, as it turned out, we had to leave in the car. They shuffled nervously into the visiting room, eyeballing the prisoners. Many of them looked like any man you might see working behind the counter at the post office, stocking soup cans at the supermarket, or delivering a package to your front door. Some flinched oddly; others had bristled jaws or tattoos on their necks. I studied their hands, wondering if theyd forced a woman to her knees, pulled a trigger, or simply written a batch of bad checks.
Gavins face looked etched with lines, and his clothes hung on his wire-hanger frame. The four of us sat at a metal table, falling into the same seating arrangement we used to take at the dinner table. He seemed unable to look us in the eyes. I was glad hed ditched his typical smugness. There was no way he could clown his way out of this onethe damage hed caused was as clear and tangible as the waxed floor and steel bars. In a weaker moment, I might have pitied him, but mostly my heart ached for our kids. I was fuming that that we had to be here at all.
Hey. Thanks for coming, he said quietly, sitting rigidly, shoulders clenched, kneading his hands in his lap.
I glared at him for a few seconds, then smiled. Gee. Thanks for having us.

In the Context of Love can be purchased in paperback or e-reader on Amazon or Barnes & Noble

Here’s an interview with Angelica Schirrick, the narrator of In the Context of Love:

1. What is your birthdate?
I came screaming into this world on June 30, 1958, weighing a mere 6 pounds and 5 ounces.

2. Where were you born?
I was delivered by midwife Rose Rumble at my great aunts farm in Wisconsin.

3. What’s your favorite type of pet?
I grew up with a gorgeous fluffy collie named Cookie, so Im awfully fond of dogs, but at this point in my life, Id rather have something low maintenance. Im thinking goldfish, canary, or a rock. Yes, a pet rock would be swell.

4. Who is your significant other?
The Gypsy King or Hungarian heartthrob Joe (Jozsef) Vadas will always be my first and only love.

5. What is your secret desire?
Believe it or not, I would love to surprise Joe with a trip to France to visit Jim Morrisons gravesite in Pere Lachaise. Hes such a Doors fan. Im not (please dont tell) but a whole week in Paris with Joe would be heavenly.
 
Contact Linda

 




Monday, February 22, 2016

Meet my #EggcerptExchange Guest--Author of Novels Set in Ancient Rome

One of my most unforgettable experiences was walking through Roman Forum, as my husband said "in the footsteps of Julius Caesar and all those crazy bastards."
Ancient Rome AND Pompeii always fascinated me, and I've been blessed to have visited them more than once. Here's an author after my own heart--Nathan's books are set during those times of war, of decadence, of gluttonous self-indulgence.
I'm looking forward to reading them. Meanwhile, meet Nathan and read about A WAR WITHIN.

About Nathan

As a kid, Nathan delighted in leaping through the door of historical fiction and into the adventure of the ancient world. In his teens, his love for reading birthed a desire to write and bring history alive for others. Nathan has always been fascinated with the monumental power and enduring achievements of the Roman Empire and its asymmetrical clash with Early Christianity. As a Christian, he is inspired by stories of triumphant faith in the face of persecution, and he hopes these stories will inspire others as well.

 
 

About A WAR WITHIN

How far would you go to free your mother from slavery?
Suzanna ben Ya’ir is a slave to the king of Hatra, the indomitable fortress city. She dreams of escaping the harem and finding her way back to Rome to find her son, but she is held prisoner by the king’s soldiers, towering walls, and untold miles of murderous desert. To escape she must earn coins as a healer among the common folk of the city and join forces with a Hatran guard who secretly loves her. But when the Roman legions arrive to besiege the city her hope of escape seems more unattainable than ever.

Theudas ben Ya’ir is a fierce warrior and a member of the Roman Emperor’s guard, but he also harbors a deadly secret – he is a Christian. Theudas longs to find his mother and rescue her from slavery, but the Emperor, his legions, and Plautianus – the ruthless leader of the Praetorians – are besieging the city where she is held captive. Now Theudas must break the Roman siege and infiltrate the hostile city, find his mother and help her escape. But doing so will mean committing treason against the Emperor. Will his quest cost Theudas his new-found faith and the life of the woman he loves?
With Suzanna’s life hanging in the balance, can she and Theudas defy the odds and reunite? And if so, can they hope to survive?
 
Excerpt:

Suzanna wept with shame. She wept for the hope of escape that she knew to be false even as she clung to it. The paltry few coins she managed to save would never be enough to convince a merchant to risk the wrath of the king by smuggling her out of this city and across the wasteland surrounding it. The course of her life stretched out before her, as clear and brutal as the sandy, sun-baked road that led west toward the life she would never see again. She would go from the harem to the scullery as her beauty continued to fade, and finally, long after all color had been bleached from her life, to the grave.
She tried to reach for her faith, fumbled for it with groping fingers. She could brush it, could feel the residual warmth of the fire that once burned in her, but she couldn’t grasp it, couldn’t stir it to life again. Jehovah had forsaken her and so she knelt in a pile of rotting garbage against a filthy stone wall and wept.
Her pain seemed inexhaustible but her tears were not and finally her shuddering shoulders slowed and her sobs subsided. She was leaning against the wall now, her cheek against cold stone. In that moment, Suzanna felt a strange sense of clarity. She had two choices. She could lay here and die, or get up and go on. It was the hardest decision she had ever faced.
In the end, a dying man made the decision for her.
Tonight is the night Binyamin will pass from this world and I must be there to ease that passing. I must be there. I must get up. I must make at least this one last effort.
The heat of the day was fully gone now and she was stiff with cold. She struggled to her feet and stared up at the crooked slice of starry sky above. What time was it? Time had had no meaning while she wept. It could have been minutes or hours. But it was still darkest night. She still had time. She brushed at her the skirt of her tunic in a futile effort to wipe away the muck, then swept a sleeve across her eyes and beneath her nose. Stepping free of the alley she looked around, took her bearings, and started off at a pained shuffle.
Movement worked the cold stiffness from her limbs and she began walking faster as if trying to shake off and leave behind the depression and hopelessness that had threatened to crush her. She had a purpose this night, reason enough to live.
For to him that is joined to all the living there is hope: for a living dog is better than a dead lion. The proverb came, unbidden, to her mind. And along with it came a thought, a feeling, a whisper on the wind. Theudas yet lives. She couldn’t tell where the assurance came from, had no way to prove it as true, and yet she suddenly knew it. Knew it like her own name. She quickened her steps still more.
Where there is life, there is hope.

Character Interview of Suzanna ben Ya’ir 

Birthdate and Birthplace
Suzanna was born a slave in Rome in AD 161. She was descended from Jewish slaves captured in the Judeo-Roman war a hundred years before. 

Level of schooling
As a child, she learned healing from her master, a Greek physician, and after being sold upon his death she further developed her natural talent through hands-on experience, nursing her master’s wife and other slaves in the household.  

Significant other
She married a fellow Jewish slave, Luke, and they had a son, Theudas. After Theudas fought their master’s son and Luke defended him, both father and son were sold to be gladiators. 

Currently residing in...
Luke died in the Coliseum, and Suzanna was transported to Parthia and sold into the harem of the king of Hatra, the Parthian desert fortress.  

Job and most important goal
There, with the help of a sympathetic guard, she slips away at night to nurse the poor, hording the few coins she receives in payment in hopes of one day buying passage back to Rome with a caravan.  

Secret desire or fantasy and worst fear or nightmare
Her secret dream is to be reunited with her son, while her greatest fear is that she will die alone and forgotten.  

Purchase A WAR WITHIN
 
 
Website


 

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Meet my guest in the #eggcerpt exchange, author of a new young adult romantic mystery, Kimbra Kasch

Kimbra is my guest today; she has a new romance titled THE CATS OF CULLABY CREEK--and just like me, she ran home after school to catch Dark Shadows! Meet Kimbra and read about CATS!

About Kimbra

I'm a writer who grew up in a family with 9 kids and only 1 t.v. so I spent my days reading and, later, writing. I love books. . .maybe because I never got to pick t.v. shows we watched. But I’d run home after school to catch the last fifteen minutes of Dark Shadows...

 I still love to run...and read. My favorite romance novels are The Hunger Games...okay, I know, it's a survival book but it's really all about romance. Then there were the series: Twilight, Fifty Shades, and more but I also love paranormal, Horror and even light books like Dewey the Small Town Library Cat... Mainly, I just love to read. . . and write.
 
 
About THE CATS OF CULLABY CREEK 
 
When Savannah meets Kyle, it's love at first sight. And why wouldn't it be? He's perfect, as far as she can tell. But Kyle appears whenever things go wrong. Maybe he isn't everything she thought he was. It's a complete mystery until she discovers the water in Cullaby Creek is being bottled and sold as vitamin “infused” water. Mistic Water promises the impossible. And then, like a magical elixir, it delivers. People who drink it feel younger, smarter, faster...healthier. But it doesn’t take long before side effects hit. Literally. The secret has to be in the water…or is it something more?
 
EXCERPT
Kelly and Kyle
These two shared some sort of history. And now I was in the middle of their story.
Sparks flew through the air. But, they didn’t seem to notice—or maybe they just didn’t care how uncomfortable they were making the rest of us.
I scanned the room. The terribly odd thing was that while they stood in the center of the cafeteria—arguing—everyone’s eyes were on me.
What is so interesting about me?
After a few seconds, I heard whispered accusations slammed back and forth, like a ping-pong ball. My name, muttered in odd and angry tones. No one seemed to mind staring at me, but only the bravest few were sneaking sideways glances over at Kelly and Kyle, hoping no one noticed.
This wasn’t what I needed on my first day at a new school. I hadn’t come here looking for instant enemies, but I knew I’d accidentally stirred a private pot and things were already starting to boil.
I needed to do something and quick. From the sounds floating around me, if they got into an actual argument, I was going to get the blame.
I spit out the first words I could think to say, “What’s a new kid to do, after school, around here… for fun?”
Kyle sighed and chuckled, “That depends on what you’re hoping to find and what you think is fun.” He stepped back away from Kelly for a moment. “You big city kids always think something needs to be going on. But in real life, in a small town, not much ever happens.”
“We could ask my Mom to drive us into Astoria to do some shopping,” I suggested. It was a little too obvious—even to me—Kelly wanted me out of the picture and was trying everything she could think of to keep me away from Kyle. I almost felt sorry for her—but only for a second.
“Or,” Kyle sat down and nodded for me to join him. I could feel a warm rush of air and his scent worked its way up inside my head. I barely heard him finish, “We could go for a run.”
“What?” Kelly demanded, clenching her hands into tight-balled fists at her side.
“Savannah,” Kyle lowered his voice and said my name slow, putting an emphasis on the last syllable, like it was a soft sigh, ‘ah’. And, for the first time in my life, I loved the sound of my own name. “Is a runner. And she’s fast. Aren’t ‘cha?” He nudged me and moved even closer. I could barely think. His smell overpowered my senses; it was the sweet woodsy scent of him that took me by surprise. I closed my eyes and drank it in.
When I opened them back up, Kelly’s eyes were shooting red flames of rage straight at me.
I gazed at Kyle and felt a warmth in my stomach again. It was working its way up into my chest. “That’s not what you said this morning,” I laughed then spun away.
 
About Kelly
Nickname: Vannah
Job: Student
Level of schooling, or self-taught: High school
Birthdate: 8.15.2009
Birthplace: Portland, Oregon
Currently residing in...Mist, Oregon
Favorite type of pet: Cat
Favorite place to visit: Portland
Significant other: Kyle
Most important goal: Get her family out of Mist
Worst fear or nightmare: That Kyle won’t make it out of Mist
Favorite food: Chili Dogs
Wealthy, poor, or somewhere in between? In-between
Secret desire or fantasy: To Morph into a cougar
What would you do if you won the lottery? Move and buy out Mistic Water

Purchase THE CATS OF CULLABY CREEK for Amazon Kindle
 
 
Visit Kimbra
 


 


Tuesday, February 16, 2016

My Author Friend Kim Headlee is my Guest in the Eggscerpt Exchange--Meet Kim!



Raging Sea: Reckonings
by Kim Headlee
FREE on Kindle Feb 16-18, 2016!
As part of the 2016 Eggcerpt Exchange, Raging Sea: Reckonings by Kim Headlee is a free Kindle download Feb. 16-18!

And of course it's always free via Kindle Unlimited and Amazon Prime.

Synopsis
Those who aspire to greatness must first learn servanthood.

Stripped of kin, clan, country, and even his identity for having failed the most important woman in his life and her infant son, Angusel begins the arduous task of rebuilding his life and reclaiming his honor. The path he treads is fraught with uncomfortable revelations, unexpected reconciliations… and unavoidabble reckonings.


Excerpt
Gull gave Angusel a measuring stare, glanced at the skies—which had remained calm, and the temperature was behaving itself for once—and reached a decision. “Elian, the wood caan keep. Our wee lion cub needs a woman. So do I, truth be told.” He picked up his sword.

Over Angusel's embarrassed, What! soared Elianâ's hearty laughter. "I suppose you know just the place," said the centurion with a grin.

"Of course. Don't you?" Gull shot back. When he got no response, he continued, "How long has it been for ye, auld boar?"

Elianâ's grin soured. He pivoted on his wooden leg and stomped inside the cottage. Without looking back he said, "None of your cac-licking business. Take him, then. Just don't be all day about it." The words faded with distance until the last few were almost inaudible.

Learn more about Angusel (a.k.a. Lancelot) from Raging Sea: Reckonings.
  1. Nickname
    For having failed the most important person in my life, and her infant son, I am no longer known by my birth name, Angusel. I now call myself Aonar a Dubh Loch, which in your tongue means “Alone from the Black Lake.” It is a fitting name for the condition of my soul.
  2. Job
    I am a soldier in the Dragon Legion of Brydein, an officer of optio rank. This is the lowest rank in the officer corps and carries no command authority. This rank is bestowed upon couriers and spies. As an optio attached to the Fifth Turma of the Manx Cohort, I have been called upon to perform both types of service.
  3. Level of schooling, or self-taught
    For the better part of two years, as a condition of my being held hostage by the Pendragon to ensure that my mother would not again attack the Pendragon’s people, I studied with the monks on the Isle of Maun. In spite of my hostage status—and the fact tthat the monks’ lessons were not the favorite part of my day—I now look back upon that time with wistful longing.
  4. Birthdate
    I was born under the sign of the Lion, in the month known by the Romans as Junius—or June, as you would say—in the year numbered by Christian reckoning as 479. My people do not bother to label the passage of years, nor do they bother with the remembrance of birth days.
  5. Birthplace
    The place of my birth—an earth-and-timmber fortress named Senaudon atop a high stone promontory—is now covered by a massive stone construction called Stirling Castle in what is now Scotland. It grieves me that the invaders I fought so hard to repel have lent their name to this land, and that my people, the Caledonians—or Picts, as the Romans insisted upon naming us—are all but lost in the mists of time.
  6. Currently residing in...
    Because I was gravely wounded in my last battle, the renowned healer Prioress Niniane has granted me permission to heal under her care at Rushen Priory on the Isle of Maun.
  7. Favorite type of pet
    If by “pet” you mean an animal of which I am fond, I possess a deep affinity for my warhorse Stonn. He has saved my life in battle countless times. I also like cats, and they me, though there is no one special cat in my life at this time.
  8. Favorite place to visit
    There is a large rock just off the Manx shoreline near the priory where I go to escape the pressures of my life, and just sit and think. At high tide, it’s completely surrounded by water, and it makes me feel at one with the “raging sea” that is my namesake.
  9. Significant other
    Gyan, the most significant woman in my life, I can never be with in any romantic sense, for she is married to Arthur, the man she loves with all her heart, and he her. I would sooner take my own life than cause any harm to befall their relationship. Recently I met another woman, Eileann, who was kind to me beyond all reason or expectation, even though I am an outcast among our people. Eileann is as beautiful and gentle a soul as any I have ever known, and I consider it an honor simply to know her. Whether she and I are destined to be together someday, only the gods know.
  10. Most important goal
    The one thing I yearn for with all my soul is to reclaim my place as a warrior at Gyan’s side. Since the moment I met her, all I've ever wanted was to be her champion and protector. That honor was stripped from me when I failed to save the life of Gyan's infant son, a failure that shall haunt me for the rest of my days.
  11. Worst fear or nightmare
    My worst fear is that I shall never earn Gyan's forgiveness, for without it, I can never achieve my most important goal.
  12. Favorite food
    With my food choices being dictated by what rations of meat and ale are offered to soldiers in the Dragon Legion, I do not give thought to what might be my favorite… though a hot, juicy slice of roast porkk does sound tempting just now.
  13. Wealthy, poor, or somewhere in between?
    Before the failure that caused me to be stripped of kin, clan, country, and purpose, I was Oighre Albainaich Chaledon—that is to say, the Exallted Heir of Clan Alban, a prince among my people, with all the wealth and privileges that title entailed. Now, I own nothing more than the clothes on my back and the armor and weapons stored in the armory on my behalf.
  14. What would you do if you won the lottery?
    What is a lottery? For me and everyone I know, the casting of lots is not something that is won, for the consequence usually entails having to perform an unpleasant duty, such as mucking the stables.
  15. Secret desire or fantasy
    I dare not speak it, lest Arthur overhear. He would eat my heart for breakfast, and then use the rest of me for target practice. I believe that my heart is of more use to him—and her—where it it is.

Download your free Kindle copy of
Raging Sea: Reckonings
today! 


About the Author
Kim Headlee lives on a farm in southwestern Virginia with her family, cats, goats, Great Pyrenees goat guards, and assorted wildlife. People and creatures come and go, but the cave and the 250-year-old house ruins—the latter haaving been occupied as recently as the mid-twentieth century—seem too be sticking around for a while yet. She has been an award-winning novelist since 1999 (Dawnflight 1st edition, Sonnet Books, Simon & Schuster) and has been studying the Arthurian Legends for nigh on half a century.

Follow Kim via

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Friday, February 12, 2016

My #eggcerpt exchange guest is the talented Tina Gayle--Happy Valentine's Day!

I always enjoy hosting Tina; she's a gifted author and is computer savvy, too!

Tina grew up a dreamer and loved to escape into the world of books.
After years of working in the business world doing a variety of jobs, she decided to try her hand at writing and hope to incorporate the joy of being a mother into her books.

Read about SUMMER'S GROWTH, Book One of the Family Tree Series, and see what each color rose means according to tradition.

Different Color Roses

With Valentine’s just around the corner, I thought I would refresh everyone’s memory on what the different colors of roses mean.  You don’t want to send the wrong impression. 

 
Red Roses say, “I love you.” And are the ultimate symbol of romance and enduring passion. 

Pale Pink Roses imply grace, gentleness and joy. 

Light Pink Roses express a sense of fun, happiness, and whimsy. 

Deep Pink Roses say, “Thank you.” 
 
 

Lilac Roses indicate the sender fell in love at first sight with the recipient and is enchanted.  Because the meaning for lilac roses aren’t as widely known, it’s best to send a card with them. 

White Roses symbolize truth and innocence.  They also send other messages like, “I miss you,” and “You’re heavenly.” 

Coral Roses express one thing through their color, desire. 

Peach Roses signify appreciation, gratitude, modesty, and also can convey sympathy. 

Orange Roses communicate enthusiasm, desire and fascination on the part of the sender.
 
 

Yellow Roses indicate friendship and freedom, not a sign of love. 

A Dead Rose, regardless of original color, says “It’s over.” 

Hope you have a great Valentine’s Day.
 
 

 

About SUMMER'S GROWTH
 
In the spirit-haunted Winston estate in Ohio, rooted in time and occupied by the lingering ghosts of a great family, the torch is about to pass... 
Mattie Winston, sober, sensible, and steady, has served as Keeper to the family for decades. Amber Harrison, hovering on the edge of flunking out of college, unsure what she wants out of life, has barely even heard of the Winston estate. The family, however, has decided that it's time for the changing of the guard. These two exceptional women soon find themselves dealing with violence, murder attempts, and old family mysteries while each finding the love of her life. Two romances and a growing friendship, all twined around a brooding family tragedy, make for an outstanding paranormal mystery offering depth and charm beyond the commonplace. The growing love of Amber and Carter and of Mattie and Quincy offer readers a tender and engaging first novel in a winning new paranormal series.
 
Excerpt
Standing by the bay window in the front room, Mattie watched the car approach. She wanted to run, but instead glanced at the kindhearted spirit of Opal, her distant grandmother. Dressed in her best early American gown, the many layers of her petticoat swished with a soft hiss when she moved.
“There’s no reason to be nervous. Once you meet Amber, you’ll see she caps the climax,” Opal voiced in a soothing tone. “Your Aunt Rachel is absolutely thrilled to have a descendant from her branch of the family as keeper.”
Looking beyond her at the rest of the room, Mattie searched for the other members of the family council. They always offered her their support when she faced a big decision. Yet, today they were conspicuously absent.
“Don’t worry. The whole family is behind you. We just thought it better if we didn’t all hover.” 
Shifting from foot to foot, she wrung her hands together. A simple process of a changing of the guard for them, Amber’s arrival marked the end of the life Mattie loved.
The beautiful spirits around her didn’t understand how cruel humans could be to each other. What if she screwed up and the girl left? Or the girl hated living with a house full of spirits?
Unease pricked at Mattie’s mind. She had no experience in dealing with strangers. All her business associates understood her likes and didn’t force her to attend any social events.
A quick glance out the window, and a car rounded the fountain. She wasn’t prepared to entertain Amber. How could she be? She never invited guests to the estate.
“Now, Pumpkin, there’s no need to worry. It’s time another branch of the family realize what a pain it is to be keeper.” Opal smiled, offering her special form of reassurance. “We’re all here to help with the transition.”
The high notes of Beethoven’s Fifth sprang from the piano. Mattie jumped in surprise at the sudden noise. She whipped around to see Uncle Samuel, the artist of the family, standing next to the piano.
“The game is afoot.” He arched his eyebrows and grinned, then disappeared.
“I’d better leave.” Her aunt patted Mattie’s shoulder. “Just remember, the girl is uneasy too.”
Opal disappeared.
With a deep breath, Mattie turned and gripped the cold metal knob in her hand.
Soon her home would belong to a stranger, and then what would she do?


 
 

 

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Meet my Eggscerpt Guest--From Dracula's Country! Carmen Stefanescu

Carmen is a fascinating person with an amazing past!


She resides in Romania, the native country of the infamous vampire Count Dracula, but where, for about 50 years of communist dictatorship, just speaking about God, faith, reincarnation or paranormal phenomena could have led someone to great trouble - the psychiatric hospital if not to prison.
Teacher of English and German in her native country and mother of two daughters, Carmen Stefanescu survived the grim years of oppression, by escaping in a parallel world, that of the books. 
She has dreamed all her life to become a writer, but many of the things she wrote during those years remained just drawer projects. The fall of the Ceausescu’s regime in 1989, and the opening of the country to the world meant a new beginning for her. She started publishing. Poems first, and then prose. Both in English.
Shadows of the Past, paranormal/light romance/light mystery/light horror was released at the end of 2012 by Wild Child publishing, USA.
About SHADOWS OF THE PAST
 
Anne's relationship with her boyfriend Neil has disintegrated. After a two-year separation, they pack for a week vacation in hopes of reconciling. But fate has other plans for them.
The discovery of a bejeweled cross and ancient human bones opens a door to a new and frightening world--one where the ghost of a medieval nun named Genevieve will not let Anne rest. This new world threatens not only to ruin Anne and Neil's vacation but to end all hopes of reconciliation as Anne feels compelled to help free Genevieve's soul from its torment.
Can Anne save her relationship and help Genevieve find her eternal rest?
A touching, compelling story of tragedy, loss and the power of endless love and good magic.
The twists and turns in this paranormal tale keep the reader guessing up to the end and weave themselves together into a quest to rekindle love.

Excerpt
The peal of the church bells from the abbey tower startled Genevieve. The sound added to her mounting anxiety.
The massive abbey loomed over the stone paved path.  All the nuns were at evening mass.  With a bit of luck her disappearance would go unnoticed for a few more hours. The Abbess would assume she was cleaning the toilets as ordered.
Fear skittered through Genevieve when she turned away from the abbey towards the path leading to town. Nothing stirred.  She hesitated.  Evil emanated from the forest surrounding the abbey. With a shiver, she leaned against the solid oak gates that flanked the abbey's main path. They had hidden her from detection for the past couple of hours, but how much longer would she be safe?
The mountain shadows grew thicker and closer.
She moved her weight from one leg to the other. They ached from so much standing, but she lacked the strength to return to the gardener's cottage and wait for Andrew's arrival as planned. Genevieve closed her tired eyes. The image of old Ryan, slumped dead in his chair in his cubicle, caught life in her mind and made her whole body ripple with fear.
She'd rather wait for Andrew here, outside.
Had he forgotten his promise? What if something terrible befell him during the last three days, or he had changed his mind? Why should he risk all for an ordinary nun?
Had his folks talked him into giving her up, made him see reason? Helping her out of her predicament meant a huge risk for him -- losing his family, his friends and his position among his peers. His words echoed in her mind. "I will risk everything for you, even life, if necessary."
* * * *
 "Anne, Anne, wake up. Wake up, please," the insistent voice whispered next to her ear.  The touch of a hand, on her shoulder, startled Anne.
She opened her eyes, still half between sleep and reality. Her gaze stopped on a stranger, a woman, by her side.
The moon's pale face, the only light, filtered through a small gap in the tent's entrance; yet the stranger's whole body emanated a kind of soft ray, a yellowish halo making her figure and face easy to discern.
A long, dark robe, similar to those worn by nuns in monasteries centuries ago, covered her body. No traditional headdress covered the woman's red hair, which fell loosely over her shoulders in long, heavy tendrils and continued down her chest and back.
Anne stood up and studied the intruder with open curiosity. The stranger’s wax pale face looked corpse like. Anne opened her mouth to ask her who she was. She looked Anne straight in the eyes, placed her forefinger on her lips and whispered, "Hush, come. Follow me."
Anne's eyes widened.
The woman, moving away from the sleeping bag, appeared to glide above the ground. Her bare feet didn't make a sound.
As if hypnotized, Anne followed the illuminated silhouette heading into the forest, without questioning her own actions.
An onrush of sensations unfamiliar to her followed. Dizziness and a malevolent feeling of unreality suffocated her. The presence of evil, creeping up and enveloping her, became almost palpable. Her throat turned dry, and she gasped for air.
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Saturday, February 6, 2016

My Eggcerpt Exchange Guest is Paranormal, Mystery, Suspense and Romance Author Kim Cox

Kim writes Paranormal, Mystery, Suspense and Romance. She lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina with her chain saw artist husband, their West Highland White Terriers--Scooter and Harley, and a Yorkie mix, Candi. Kim is published in novels, short stories and articles. 


HAUNTED HEARTS






Book One – Lana Malloy Paranormal Mystery Series


99 cents for a Limited Time


Will Lana Malloy solve the twenty-year-old double murder of her great aunt and her great aunt’s fiancé by Memorial Day? If she can, they’ll spend eternity together; if she can’t, they’ll be stuck as Haunted Hearts for another year.


Available now in print and electronic formats through Amazon Kindle, Amazon Print, 24SymbolsBarnes & Noble Nook, iTunes iBook, Kobo, and Page Foundry.
 
EXCERPT
Lana edged Roxie toward the door. “Oh, no, that’s not necessary. The button just fell off and rolled under something. I can turn it off as soon as I find the knob. Or if I can’t, I’ll just use some pliers to turn it off. But thank you for the offer. That was nice of you. I appreciate it.”
Lucy put her finger in her mouth and pretended to gag—something she’d learned recently and overused.
Lana pursed her lips and creased her brows, giving Lucy a quelling stare. When they got to the door, Roxie turned around. “I almost forgot. Can I get that coffee now?”
“Yes. It completely slipped my mind, too. Follow me.” Lana turned to go upstairs to the kitchen.
“I’ll wait here,” Roxie said, backing up closer to the side door.

* * * * *

Lucy watched as Roxie slipped over to Lana’s desk and skimmed over the papers stacked there.
Oh, busybody! Lucy hated nosy people more than anything.
Roxie turned the corner of a sheet up with two fingers and leaned over slightly, tilting her head to one side so she could see what was written on the paper under it.
Lucy noticed one drawer wasn’t completely closed on the file cabinet. She flew over and pushed it with all her might. The drawer slammed shut with a loud bang.
Roxie jumped, her eyes wide as she searched the room for the source of the noise. Lucy whooshed by her so fast, the breeze lifted one of the curlers from Roxie’s head. Then, she hurried over, opened and slammed another drawer.
At this, Roxie ran for the door. “Oh, God! Let me out of here,” she cried as she struggled with the knob.
Lana returned with the cup of coffee grounds in her hand. “What in this world? Roxie! Here’s your coffee.”
Without a word, Roxie reached for the cup with one hand and grasped the doorknob with the other.
Lana gave Lucy another narrow-eyed stare. “Here, let me help you with that.”
Lucy shrugged her shoulders. Could she help it if the woman couldn’t handle loud noises? It wasn’t her fault. The old biddy shouldn’t have been snooping.
Roxie’s teeth chattered. The cream on her face now appeared dry and cracked. “What do you have here? Ghosts? Poltergeists?”
“Well, I never. Can you believe she called me a poltergeist? The nerve of that idiot woman.”
“Lucy!”
Lucy clasped her hand over her mouth when she realized Lana had said her name aloud without thinking. As Roxie struggled, Lana was able to open the door for her but only after she pried Roxie’s hands off the knob.
Available now in print and electronic formats through Amazon Kindle, Amazon Print, 24SymbolsBarnes & Noble Nook, iTunes iBook, Kobo, and Page Foundry.

Other Books Available in the Series






In book two, GET OUT OR DIE, the success of Lana’s first case has spread throughout the local Charleston area and her business is booming. At one pro-bono job, Lana helps a widow communicate with her late husband where she learns of a frightening new ability—an ability that could give the next spirit, an angry ghost, the upper hand if she’s not careful.

 In book three, THE WEDDING CRASHER, Lana is on her honeymoon in Gatlinburg, Tennessee when she learns that a reoccurring vision about an abducted woman took place in nearby Knoxville. This case takes her hiking up mountainsides and trekking through rough terrain to find a madman before he can harm this young woman.

In the fourth book, CHRISTMAS CRUISE, Lana boards a cruise ship haunted by dead women who were brutally murdered. While aboard the ship Lana has an experience that mentally injures her. Once she recovers, she's more determined than ever to find the murderer.

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Author's Website: http://www.kimcoxauthor.com 


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