Monday, June 18, 2018

#MysteryMonday #Lakota/PinkertonBoxedSet #HistoricalRomance



Author: Christine Young
ISBN: 978-1-62420-231-5

Genre: Historical Romance
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 4
Kindle Unlimited $0.00

BLURB

Dakota's Bride

When Emma St. John received her brother's letter imploring her to escape her stepfather's vengeful scheme and to trust Dakota Barringer with her life, she was willing to chance it. But the handsome, brooding riverboat owner Emma found in Natchez was a danger of another kind. For Emma soon found herself surrendering to an unrelenting desire.

My Angel

When her father decided to send her to a finishing school back East, Angela Chamberlain refused to be confined to stuffy drawing rooms. He'd come to America looking for excitement, but Devil Blackmoor got more than he bargained for when he encountered a beautiful rebel who answered his kisses with a wild innocence that touched his very soul.

The Locket

The year is 1894. Seeking revenge for crimes against his family, Misha Petrovich follows a path that leads straight to Ariel Cameron's boarding house in Mist Harbor, Oregon. A family heirloom in Ariel's possession leads Misha to believe she is guilty.

The Talisman

Running from a marriage that lasted one night, Dr. Moriah McKeown discovers the land she has settled on is coveted by determined and lawless men. Yet the proud young woman who once vowed never to abandon her home has second thoughts when her adopted children are threatened. Her only recourse is to enlist the aid of a dark, dangerous gun for hire.

Forever His

Struggling to come to terms with the part she played in Jacob St. John’s death, Etta Barringer resigns from Pinkerton Agency and seeks peace and solace in a Rocky Mountain Cabin. Jacob follows her, determined to discover the reason Etta has betrayed him, sold him out to his enemy and left him for dead.

EXCERPTS:


Moonless and frigid, the December night sent chills down Emma's spine. Yet she didn't stop at the lighted inn nearby, nor did she break stride when she stumbled over a rut in the muddy road. Instead, she pulled her skirts higher. A carriage raced by, hell-bent in the same direction, spitting mud as it flew past

A frantic look over her shoulder did nothing to relieve the fear. He was closing on her, forcing her from her hiding place. She stopped for a moment while she quickly shook the mud off her cape, then she turned to the little girl.

"You all right, Clare?" Emma asked.

The little girl nodded but didn't say anything, her face screwed tight with concentration, her breaths ragged and hard.

The big Mississippi paddle wheeler, due to leave in ten minutes, let out two loud, booming whistles. To Emma's frayed nerves, the sound was heart-stopping.

The wind from the docks smelled of fish and tar. When it shifted, she could make out the aroma of fresh baked scones coming from the inn. Emma gripped the tiny hand she held in her own a little tighter, and prayed that Clare could keep up the pace.

"It's only a wee bit farther. We can make it," Emma told the little girl, her sister. Half sister, she reminded herself.

Clare's father was not her own. His demonically hand­some face leering at her while he calmly explained what he meant for Emma to do in the bordello was something she'd never forget.

Clare was a tiny and very fragile seven-year old. She had loving green eyes and a long, slender nose coupled with delicate cheekbones. Emma knew that someday Clare would grow into a classic beauty.

One long blond lock of hair slipped loose from Clare's cap. The little girl pushed it away with her free hand, wrinkling her nose disgustedly.

Frost coated the road, and each hurried step caused the almost frozen mud to crunch beneath their feet. A horse and rider passed them, the man tipping his hat as he and his mount thundered by. Church bells rang out, the sound hollow and thin. It was almost six o'clock. She had five minutes to reach the boat.

A gust of wind caught her broadside and whisked the hood of her cape off the top of her head. She grabbed the soft fur and pulled the fabric back where it belonged. Distracted by the wind and her haste to reach the boat, Emma caught the toe of her shoe on a rock and balanced precariously for an instant.

She swore softly under her breath.

Had only one month passed?

No, three weeks ago her mother had died and two weeks ago she had learned the awful truth. Lawrence Stevenshad slowly poisoned her mother. He had given her a small dose of arsenic each day until finally her mother took to her bed. Several days later Emma had held her mother's hand while she breathed her last.

Emma would never have known about the murder if she hadn't overheard Stevens speaking in harsh whispers with a friend of his. There were other things said and promised, things Emma had not wanted to acknowledge.

Disbelief and denial had caused her to waste precious time. Seven days had come and gone since she'd had her last horrible encounter with her stepfather. It was an encounter that had left her with no doubts that everything she'd heard was the god-awful truth. Stevens had meant to sell her to a whorehouse. Still, she'd had a difficult time believing the extent of Lawrence Stevens's depravity. But when he'd installed her in Madame leBon's bordello, she realized too late that her life was in grave jeopardy.

And Clare, sweet, sweet Clare, had understood all she'd told her and perhaps more. With the eyes of a child, Clare had somehow sensed the evil that surrounded her father long before anyone else did.

Five long days and nights they'd spent on the run. Clare had not complained. No matter how exhausted or hungry she was, the little girl had pressed on, understanding the imminent danger that faced Emma. Clare had somehow known that Emma had to get as far away from Lawrence as possible.



This incredible romance is one I positively fell in love with and is good enough to read again and again.
Cherokee
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance & More 
4 Cups
I can’t remember the last time I was so engrossed in a book: Dakota’s Bridetook over my weekend, and even now, am wishing to go peruse it one more time…
Rating: 4.5 Books
Reviewed by Snapdragon Long and Short Reviews 
 My Angel

Denver, 1893

A polished azure sky looked down on a day that vacillated between winter and spring--a day unable to make up its mind. Cool breezes lifted Angela Chamberlain's brand-new canary yellow skirt off the moisture-laden sidewalk. A blazing hot sun dried the puddles in the street left over from last night's deluge.

Unlike the day, Angela had no trouble making up her mind. Angela knew what she wanted out of life. She touched one finger to the sapphire earrings adorning her newly pierced ears.

She wanted adventure.

She had a terrible craving to see the world--to climb to the top of the Eiffel Tower, to walk the Great Wall of China. She yearned to fly in a hot-air balloon high above the earth, or ride in a gondola in Venice. She wanted to fall in love with a man who was as brave and smart as her father and as dangerous as Devil Blackmoor.

Angela's wish list had no end.

Instead of adventure and romance, in three short weeks she'd be enrolled in Miss Somebody's finishing school for young ladies, where knowing which fork to use was more important than riding with the wind on her favorite horse, Kangee. A place where changing one's clothes three times or more each day was common practice.

Two days ago she'd told her father she didn't want to go.

And two days ago her father had told her she would learn to appreciate the schooling and that she was a very lucky young woman. He'd also promised her a trip to the continent for a graduation present.

A graduation present! She wanted to yell at him, but wisely kept her mouth shut. She wanted to travel now. Today. But more than anything, she didn't want to be confined to the stuffy drawing rooms in the East. Just like her father, she needed freedom. But her father meant to take the choice from her.

To gossip and chatter with rich society women was not her destiny. To know which wine was served with fish would not make her happy. This was his dream for her. Sam Chamberlain needed to look to his own heart and remember the choices he had made twenty-five years ago.

Her destiny was out there somewhere, waiting for her to snap it up and hold the moment close to her heart. She knew what she wanted, and to prove her point, she'd bought a camera and had the machine sent over to the hotel. She meant to photograph all her adventures, every nook and cranny, every monument, every intriguing person.

Across the street and down two blocks, Devil Blackmoor had just taken the saddle off his horse. He brushed the stallion's back, all the while petting the animal's sleek coat and crooning into the horse's ear. Mesmerized, she watched his hands and the gentle way he stroked the horse. 

She wished she had her camera.

Devil Blackmoor commanded her attention. He symbolized everything a father cautioned his daughter to be wary of. Despite the warning, Devil's strong jaw, his powerful shoulders and the confident way he held himself beckoned to every feminine nerve in Angela's body.

Angela clutched her hands to her chest, willing her gaze to shift to something or someone who wouldn't shatter her senses and set her blood boiling. Helpless to control her wayward heart, she kept looking back at Devil. She noticed everything about him, the way he moved, the way his denim jeans clung to his legs and the way they molded to his backside. Devil laughed at something the bouncer from the saloon said, andwhen he smiled, one edge of his mouth tilted crookedly. Ange­la's heart swooned and fluttered, and she thought she might never breathe again.

The Locket

Oregon Coast,1894

Bone-weary from a hard day at sea, Misha trudged up the long mud-rutted road to the boarding house that sat on top a hill less than a mile outside Mist Harbor, Oregon. A thick, cold mist hovered close to the ground wetting everything: the rhododendrons that grew wild, the azaleas that lined the cement walkway to the front porch, and the saw grass that grew easily in the sandy soil. Misha paused a moment to push back a lock of hair that repeatedly fell across his brow and into his eyes.

The land was windswept and salt battered, yet he enjoyed the salt-taste of the air and the swooping sea birds as well as the playful sea animals. He loved the way the trees bent to the power of the wind and found a way to survive despite the brutality of the elements. 

His purpose here was short lived, he reminded himself. He didn’t intend to find himself attached to these parts in any way. 

He smelled of a hard days work. The lingering aroma of sweat and Chinook salmon filled his nostrils. It was not a scent he had any use for, but for the time being the job on the fishing boat gave him a reason for staying in the small coastal town. Right now he couldn’t wait to submerse himself in a hot bath, wash the stench from his body, and ease his stiff, strained muscles. 

The sea had always been one of his favorite places. But fishing?

By God no, he’d just as soon relax and watch the sails billow on a clipper as the majestic ship rounded the horn or stand at the tiller with the wind whistling around him. He’d even rather battle a hurricane off the Bermudas. 

Blending in with the people who lived in this small coastal village had been imperative.

The quest he’d undertaken had led him straight to Miss Ariel Cameron’s boarding house in Mist Harbor, and there the trail stopped. Thinking about Ariel set his nerves on edge. 

Ariel was willow thin, femininely delicate, and hardly capable of the atrocities he’d set out to avenge less than a year ago. Yet the evidence he’d uncovered had sent him here, to her home. The name he’d followed had been her name. The men he’d followed had landed in Mist Harbor more than once, her father one of them. 

He walked up the immaculately kept steps to the house and opened the door to the screened in porch.

"Misha," the captain boomed out a welcome. "Fine weather we’re havin’ now. Just right for the salmon runs."

The rocker squeaked as the captain moved back and forth in the wicker chair.

"Just right," Misha acknowledged and stepped through the next door to the parlor. A blast of heat met him as he nodded his head in polite recognition to the other borders. In a pale blue day dress, Ariel moved with a slight limp through the hallway and disappeared into one of the first floor rooms. Even though she seemed to favor one leg, the sway of her hips enticed all of Misha's senses. 

He didn’t understand the feeling but in a way no other woman had touched him, she beckoned to him. Her amber colored eyes were wide and when she smiled, they glistened and shimmered, reminding him of the bronze mosques in Constantinople when the sun beat upon them. Miss Ariel Cameron was unique--unconventional--and she fascinated him. She was the key to his revenge as well as his salvation.



The Locket is a very exciting tale with a dramatic setting. Overall, this is a very entertaining story.

Maura
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance

The Talisman

Buffalo Creek, 
South Dakota 
1895

Hot, dry air scorched the prairie grass. Sweat slid along his spine. Danger clung to every whisper; seemed to swirl and grow with each passing second. Ivan Civanovich watched the woman below. With deadly purpose, he studied the lady who had hired him--the woman who had bought his gun and perhaps death.
"Reckless courage," Ivan mused. 
"Si Senor, she does have what you call a great courage, but I don’t know about the reckless part. She is always so very careful," Pedro said. 
"I’m a dangerous man, Pedro." 
"This is why she hired you."
"The lady has no business hiring men like me. She’s a woman. She is supposed to nurture lives."
"She needs you to keep the bad men from taking the land away--our home," Pedro said.
Ivan pushed the tip of his hat back from his brows. From his vantage point, he considered the woman while she hung the freshly laundered white sheets on the line. A strange shudder swept through him, his muscles tensing with the sudden feeling he knew this woman, had known her forever. The sensations were too strong, the feelings too acute, and it troubled him because knowing her was impossible.
Her hair, a wild mop of red curls, battled with the stiff, hot wind rising off the prairie. The breeze and her hair flowed in undulating currents between the lines, threatening to tangle themselves in the wire. She bent over at the waist, giving him a perfect view of her backside while she toyed with something on the ground. Seconds later she picked up the object of her curiosity, turned it over in her hands then tossed it aside.
He didn’t like to think about what could happen to her in the next few weeks. She’d advertised for a gun for a hire. She didn’t know what she bargained for, and he’d bet his inheritance she didn’t have any idea what kind of trouble she’d purchased. 
When she looked up the hill, his grin widened. She couldn’t see him, but her shoulders tensed and she sucked air. Her hand touched her forehead, shielding her eyes from the blinding sunlight. She scanned the horizon, turning a complete circle before she stopped.
"Good," he said, "she is cautious." 
"She knows someone is up here," Pedro announced. 
"She’s got more starch in her drawers and the stiffest backbone of any woman I’ve ever seen." Ivan whistled through his teeth, his eyes intent and focused upon the woman.
"Si." Pedro agreed. "She sure enough does but her heart is made of spun gold."
Ivan wiped the back of his hand across his forehead. Beads of sweat dripped down his back. His gaze swept across the barren landscape then followed the line of trees that bordered the creek. He lifted the glasses to his eyes and turned his attention to a spot about a mile north of her ranch. The railroad wanted easement rights. So why wouldn’t she sell to them. "Spun gold, huh." He dropped the binoculars, letting them dangle from their strap around his neck.
"Si, boss."
"I see." Ivan leaned forward, resting his forearm on the saddle horn.
Ivan wasn’t sure he understood. Women had a lot of fine qualities, many of which he didn’t want to live without but a soft, feminine heart shouldn’t be deciding life and death matters. 
Spun gold.No, he’d never met a female with a heart of gold, spun or otherwise. He’d never known a woman who wouldn’t betray a man for a piece of gold. Save one, he amended, and his best friend had married her. Alexi Popov had his trials too. He had kidnapped Angela and spirited her away to his home in the Crimea. In the end though, he gave up his title, his land, and most of his wealth for Angela. He followed her back to America and married her.



This is a wonderful tale, full of action, emotion and a bit mystical at times. Enjoy this one.

Maura
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance & More 4 Cups

Forever His

The sun beat down. Searing heat waves hit the hard packed earth, blistering, charring everything, even the dry prairie grass. Jacob St. John, his arms stretched overhead and bound to a whipping post, no longer counted the lashes tearing into his back, no longer felt the horrific agony. 

More than a half-dozen men and one woman were gathered in the sage-patched backyard of the run-down shack. So far not one person made a sound as they watched Chavez wield the whip, stripping the flesh off his back.

If Chavez weren't so angry and seeking revenge of his own, he would probably have just had him shot. Revenge was a powerful motive. Chavez wanted Jacob to suffer, to yell before he died. It seemed Etta Barringer did too. So far Chavez was toying with him, taunting and teasing him, cutting an inch here, ripping an inch there, not doing much damage but making mincemeat out of his back.

Jacob hadn't made a sound yet, not even a sharp, indrawn breath. He wasn't about to even though he knew Chavez would get impatient and start slashing. There was no hurry. Chavez had as long as he wanted. No one save Etta knew where he was, no one would come looking for him, at least not until the sun went down. By then Chavez would be done with him, and he would either be dead or buzzard-bait. For the life of him, he couldn't figure why Etta would hand him over to Chavez. She had always been Pinkerton to the core, yet she had betrayed him once before. If he survived this, he meant to have answers. He'd move heaven and earth to search out the lying Etta Barringer and find out exactly what she had against him.

The pain of betrayal at the forefront of his mind, and vows of revenge against the instigator of this kept him going. He focused on the woman's laughter and the scent of lemons that permeated his soul.

He had been taken by surprise. Still, he didn't go down easily. It took all of Chavez's men to get him bound securely to the post in back of the shack. And of those men, not one came away from the encounter without a scratch. Blood from the multitude of small cuts Chavez had inflicted ran in rivulets from his back, pooling on the parched thirsty ground, soaking into the dirt, staining it. 

He stood, his head proudly erect and that seemed to draw anger from Chavez. The grip of his fingers curled around the top of the post, the only sign of Jacob's pain--and fury.

The first real stroke of the whip felt like a red-hot branding iron searing across his back. Jacob didn't flinch, nor would he as long as he could hear her laughter or smell lemons floating languidly on the breeze. He wished he could see her, stare into her beguiling, green eyes until she knew he'd never stop hunting for her. Fury at his own weakness rose, and the anger he felt deep inside simmered, because she'd always attracted him. Ever since she showed up in a small town in Oregon, seduced him then drugged him and left him to sleep off the opium-laced whiskey, she'd fascinated him.

Concentrate on her--on what you're going to do when you find her again . . . 



Christine Young has done it again in this historical romance. The blizzards, betrayal, deceit and a ruthless bandito like Chavez made this a great romance.

Melinda for Night Owl Romance     5 out of 5




Sunday, June 17, 2018

#RomanceSunday #StarCrossed #Fantasy #Historical



Christine Young
achristay@aol.com

Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 2



Ireland in 1817, when tensions are high between Protestants and Catholics, faey people guide the fate of villagers. A lovely Catholic lass stumbles upon the weakly ritual fisticuffing between Irish lads. She falls into the lap of a handsome young Protestant. Family ties, grudges, and two conniving faeries threaten their budding love. But the faeries outsmart themselves when they hijack a time machine that has mysteriously appeared in their forest.

EXCERPT: Star Crossed

The heat from the afternoon sun felt wonderful--enchanting--dreamy. When she tried to sit up, the earth whirled around her again. She wanted to feel indignant but she'd brought this on herself. She didn't quite understand why she wanted to convince this arrogant oaf she wasn't a little girl.
"You mind telling me why you tackled me?" he asked.
Casey turned her head to look at the young man. He leaned on one elbow, nonchalantly plucking a blade of grass and sticking it in his mouth. His dark black hair appeared rakishly windblown and his grin was bordered by dimples on both sides. She had the craziest urge to reach up and trace the line of his lips with her finger.
"I don't believe in fighting," she said. "It's absolutely stupid for the bunch of you to come out here on the Sabbath and fight when the rest of the week you are all bosom buddies."
"Stupid, you say?" he queried. "You dare to call me stupid?" he laughed and extended his hand. "Let me help you up. I don't think I'm ready to meet your dah with pistols on the dueling field. So I think I'd best be seeing you home."
An inferno swept through Casey. She didn't know if she still reeled from the impact or if the dizziness was something else--something magical--something supernatural. When he looked at her, she trembled and her face heated. She touched her hands to her cheeks. They felt cold and clammy. Afraid if he touched her again she might melt, she stared at a puffy cloud floating whimsically overhead.
He bent closer to her. The scent of mint filled the tiny space between them.
"You all right? Did you hear what I said?" he asked, touching a finger to the pulse throbbing at her neck. She tried to bat his hand away even while her heartbeat pounded faster, and she couldn't inhale a decent breath of air.
"Stop it," he said, and paused for a moment in his assessment of her health. "I think you will live."
"Of course I will and I can find my own way home. I'm eighteen. I turned two months ago."
"That old?" He laughed and she wanted to escape. Yet some little demon inside told her he was the last person she wanted to hide from. She felt as if her body had been taken over by something unearthly, something mysterious or filled with enchantment.
"You're going to have a black eye," she said and touched the bruise forming around his eye. "Does it hurt?"
"Come on, lass," he said still holding out his hand and sidestepping her question.
"You're ignoring me," she told him, getting up without accepting his hand and dusting off hers on her skirt.
"My apologies," he laughed, bowing slightly laugh lines crinkling his brow. "It only hurts when you remind me of it."
"Then I won't be reminding you," she said quickly.
"Casey," her brother said as he rounded the top of the hill. "You coming or do you mean to dawdle here all day?"
She jumped and pressed her fingers along her skirts to smooth them all the while feeling not a wee bit guilty, but a whole lot guilty. And I have nothing to feel ashamed of. "What are you doing here? I thought you left me to fend for myself," Casey said feeling a moment of loss at the thought her brother would be walking her home and not Kelly.


EXCERPT

Casey pushed on the green grass, trying to unwind herself from the man beneath her, but fell again. All right, Casey lass, you're in a heap of trouble right now with no way out. You are seeing the earth whirl and tumble around and you're on top of a brute of a man--a Protestant.

"All right, lads, we'll meet here next Sunday, same place, same time," her brother's voice filtered through the air as if it floated in the fog that surrounded Casey.

Once again she pushed on the damp grass and didn't seem to make headway, her arms feeling as if they'd changed to soggy twine. Don't you abandon me, Patrick O'Connell. You know I have the Devil's own luck. If you leave me here, I'll never forgive you.

"What about Casey?" one of her brother's friend asked. "She looks a little worse for the encounter."

"Do you think we should leave her here--with Kelly?"

"He's a right stand-up guy. Of course you can leave her here. We'll see her home," a Shaunasey said.

"Well, Kelly is a fine bloke. He won't hurt her. In fact with my feisty lil' sister involved, I fear for him--not her," Patrick said laughing. "She'll do as she pleases. She always does. How can I control her when father cannot? She does not need a second father." He shrugged his shoulder and looked behind him at his little sister as he strolled down the hill.

"She's hurt," another friend called after Patrick. "What kind of brother are you?"

"One who is tired of looking after an accident prone little lass. She has to take responsibility for herself sometime, does she not?"

"She is that," one commented. "You rescue her night and day."

~ * ~

"You should have blessed her with a wee bit o'Irish coordination," Oran said dryly as he flew to a hovering position near the girl.

"And you should remember what our blessed mother told us, 'if you cannot say anythin' nice, don't say anything at all'." Moya rose above the flower petal, her wings buzzing with her anger toward her brother.

"I didn't say anything that wasn't the truth." Oran whistled out of tune for a moment. "We could kidnap them."

"And that is your solution to everything?" Moya pointed one finger at him and shook it. "Why, Oran, I believe you may fancy the lass for yourself. I will not have it. Go play your tricks on someone else's charge. She is mine to see to safety and long life. And don't be forgettin' the lad is yours to watch over."

"You best stem your anger, Moya. You're wings have turned golden," Oran said with a hearty chuckle.

~ * ~

"Let Kelly handle her," Casey's brother said with a light chuckle. "He lost and so he must deal with the object of that loss and assume the consequences. It's only fair."

"Hey!" Kelly said, "Don't leave me here with your sister. It will be hell to pay. She's a little girl. What will your father say?"

The others laughed. "Just don't take too long to decide what to do with her. Little girl or not, father will come after you with his pistol."

I just turned eighteen years old--little girl--how dare he…

"Bloody hell, Patrick. What are you thinking?" Kelly cried out.

"I'm thinking the Catholics won this fight. What are you thinking?" Patrick turned his back on the pair and whistled a jaunty tune as he strolled down the hill.

"Revenge will be sweet. Next Sunday…" Kelly shook his fist at the departing back of Casey's brother.

From what seemed like a great distance Casey heard the moan emanating from inside her battered and bruised body. She squished her eyes together, wishing her head didn't pound so fiercely, and the ground spin so wildly. "Who are you?" she whispered next to the man's chest while a soft spring breeze whispered against her heated face.

"Who am I?" the man chuckled. "Lass, you are the one who landed atop me. I should be inquiring into who you are? Only I know." His hands rested around her waist and squeezed as if he were testing--perhaps exploring--entirely inappropriate. Yet for some strange reason, Casey didn't mind the supposed to be unwanted attention."And I don't think your brother should have left you here with the likes of me. I'm afraid I've landed myself in a dangerous predicament. And I'm thinkin' one that will be very hard to explain."

"Shame on you," Casey said. "You take liberties." The words stole her breath and she had to lean on Kelly once more in order to minimize the pounding of her head and the strange feelings emanating from where his hands were.

"I only want to remove you from--my--ah--person. And if I were taking liberties with you, lass, you'd be near swooning with passion."

"Ah, it seems you are a wee bit arrogant," she opened her eyes and gazed into the bluest eyes she'd ever seen. "The color of a summer sky," she whispered to him, still feeling woozy and not quite sure what he'd just told her--but thinking at the moment something besides the fall caused the earth to spin and the sky to tilt with a crazy, wild abandon.

"What is, lass?"

"Your eyes," she said, struggling against him and finally rolling to the side so she lay sprawled on the grass, staring into the sky she'd referred to a moment earlier and watching a white billowy cloud float past. "I'm not a little girl," she told him. "Don't ever call me that again."

"Then you want me to tell lies?" he asked with a lazy half-smile that stole Casey's heart and left her floundering. "I dinna think I can do that."

"It isn't a lie," she said, trying to sound indignant, yet frustrated beyond anything she'd ever felt before.


Saturday, June 16, 2018

#Sci/fiFantasySaturday #Fantasy #Dragon'sAmongTheEagles



Dragons Among the Eagles by C. L. Kraemer
Excerpt Heat Level: 0
Book Heat Level: 

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BLURB: 

Aleda Sable faces the toughest decision of her life--to stay in dragon form, live as a two-legged or put one foot in the human world and one talon in the dragon world.
An urgent call from her newspaper editor sends Aleda to report on an accident whose driver appears to be a dragon. Authorities have the scene locked down and aren't allowing access to anyone. Television broadcasts flash pictures of scaly legs hanging from a crashed car. However, the bodies disappear into thin air. When the stations try follow-up reports, all they find are state highway workers busily tearing up the roads.
In determining the truth of the shifter disappearances, Aleda finds the truth of her own dilemma.

EXCERPT:

Rain thwacked against Aleda's leathery black a
ppendages. Her arms ached; heck, every muscle in her body ached. This flying thing was going to take more practice. The continual downpour of the spring night slithered past her shielded turquoise eyes, bathing her scales in cool refreshment. As much as she would like to have frolicked in the showers, she was more interested in landing in one spot, curling up and sleeping for the next four days. If only…

Cyre winged up to her side.

"You go in first and I'll follow. I want to wash off the grit of the trip."

Aleda pulled back her lips in a semblance of a smile.

"No problem," she shouted over the wind drafts.

When Cyre's sister, Brittany, had first suggested Aleda attend the dragon council in China, she'd been ecstatic. Her recent discovery of her true identity--half human, half dragon--had put her beliefs to the test. She imagined being around those like her would make her transition simpler. Cyre and Brittany, full-blooded Celtic dragons, had helped as best they could by explaining rules of dragon protocol and pointing out the good guys from the bad guys at the council meetings. By the end of the week, Aleda's fairy tale illusion had fallen abruptly on sharp rocks. Politics and power were as rampant in the dragon-shapeshifter community as in the human community.

Brittany was going to spend a night or two in Cyre's den before continuing her journey back to Scotland. Then Aleda and Cyre would be faced with the decisions they'd both been putting off since their first meeting.

She felt the solid rock beneath her talons and breathed a sigh of relief. The council meeting had been exhilarating, educational and overwhelming all at once. It was nice, really nice, to be back in the Northwest of the United States. Aleda stood, getting her land legs then shook the extra moisture from her body. Placing her talon on the button in the rock wall, she pushed and the door of the cave slid open. Watching the heavy glass trundle into the backside of Mt. St. Helens still gave her chill bumps. So much about the twenty-first century dragon world made her shake her head. How could they survive with all the advancements humans had accomplished? Knowing the answer still didn't stop her from asking the question.

The few minutes she'd stood contemplating questions already asked had given the cavern a chance to air out. While her sense of smell wasn't as acute for some things, sulfur being one of those, she still hadn't been able to adjust completely to the acrid aroma Cyre tolerated in his cave.

As she dragged her tired feet over the threshold, Cyre backwinged his way on the landing. Aleda turned just in time to catch the wicked twinkle in his eyes.

He sprayed water over the landing, his laughter bubbling over the surrounding rocks like thunder.

"Cyre! I just dried off! Jiminy!"

Aleda wrinkled her brow and glared at the young gray-green dragon. His mirthful smirk did nothing to help her anger.

"Hey, you two. Get in here and dry off. I did some hunting before you got here and there's dinner in the great room. I've had mine and to be quite frank, I'm exhausted. I'm going to sleep."

Brittany tromped back to the great room and found a warm spot near the back wall. 

Cyre and Aleda located the carcasses of the deer where Brittany had dropped the bodies. Each took one and moved off to eat, alone, before settling in for the night. Minutes after devouring their meals, the trio of dragons were fast asleep, the decisions of the previous week set aside for the normality of life.



Dragons Among the Eagles is an excellent sequel that will hold your attention until the very end and leave you craving more. Well done Ms. Kraemer for delivering yet another awesome book!

Worthy of a 5 Angel Eyes rating
L. Nickels for Rogue's Angels



Friday, June 15, 2018

#Friday'sFeaturedTitle #Hunter: The Serpent Mounds by C.L. Hagley #YA #Sci/fi



Title: Hunter: The Serpents Mounds
A Lian Hunter Adventure
ISBN: 978-1-62420-293-3
Author: C. L. Hagely

Genre: YA/Sci Fi
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 2


Buy at: AmazonBarnes & Noble

TAGLINE

Bones and more bodies are found in a serpent-shaped mound—is it a connection to the reptilians or a new predator feasting on students’ hopes and dreams?

BLURB

It’s sophomore year. Lian Hunter and his side-kick and best friend Gabriel were hoping for an uneventful and normal school year at Tri-Asterisk Academy in downtown Los Angeles. But Fate has once again strategically placed gigantic problems in their paths.

When bones and more bodies are found in a serpent-shaped mound, is it a connection to the reptilians or is a new predator feasting on students’ hopes and dreams? An ancient enemy has also arisen on Nibiru to stake their claim on Earth.

This second book of the Lian Hunter Adventures series takes Lian and his cohorts to the brink of death again. Continuously drawn to this dark world he knows so little about, Lian watches more skeletons from the Hunter closet brought to light.


EXCERPT

Lian pressed his face against the glass, using his sleeve to clear a circular patch off the condensation covering the windows. He looked out at the mountainous terrain as the rain was coming down in sheets. Black plants painted the landscape, and in fact, much of this area’s vegetation was singed from the recent fires, all fanned by the Santa Ana winds. The rain made the area much more dangerous, creating a larger chance for mudslides and flash flooding. Lian watched water pour from a particular shelf of rock that jutted out, resembling a huge spigot gushing brown water over a section of road. This huge barrage of water crashed onto the highway, flooding the lanes and closing it off to traffic, before innocently flowing down a hill to the ocean.
Lian ran his hands down the front of his jacket across the Tri-Asterisk emblem, mentally visualizing the triangle and the wordsAcademiae…Artes…Astronomicasas his fingers slid over the embroidered symbol and letters. The car started to slow down as it made its way around a curve in a slow downward spiral. He leaned in closer to the glass. A lone figure stood in the rain staring back at him as the car passed. There was nothing around but barren land, and the rain seemed to have no effect on the man, as he stood there gazing back at the passing cars. Something disparaging and interesting about this homeless man had Lian squinting his eyes to get a clearer view of him, even turning his head to follow him as the car proceeded forward. As the man was moving out of Lian’s view through the side door glass, Lian suddenly saw something, and found himself pushing his face even harder against the glass trying to get a better look at the man. He was now peering at what seemed to be a large hulking green figure instead of the homeless individual. His heart immediately started thumping, and he shifted completely around to look out the back window. A surprised Lian moved his head back at what he saw. The green figure was gone, and the homeless man was the only thing in view from the rear window.
Lian slowly turned his body around to face forward and slid down the seat, looking down at his hands. He felt them slightly trembling, but he had to check, just as he had to check if a reptilian actually stood on the side of the road. Did imagination once again take over his common sense? Lian started to wonder if this year was going to be driven with more incidents of his wild imagination and larger-than-life predicaments. His whole body jerked from its slumped position in the seat when a beep sounded and a small screen came down in the middle of the car.
“Lian.” Gabriel was smiling, his face now lit up on the screen.
Lian put his hand on his chest. “Jeez, Gabe. You scared the heck out of me.”
“Start of the sophomore year shakes?” Gabriel was grinning, his smile creeping up one side of his face. “Hey, I’m just calling to tell you I’m sorry we couldn’t ride in together. I’ll meet you in front of the school in a half hour.”
“Alright, see you then.” Lian sat back against the seat and inhaled a deep breath as the screen slid out of view. “Great. I’m already shaken up. I’m seeing things, and I haven’t even reached school or started any classes yet.” he muttered to himself. “Yep…this is going to be some year.”
The rain started coming down harder, making the visibility even harder for him to see out the side window. The car approached the on-ramp, and Lian leaned forward to look out the front window. He was checking to see if the homeless lady was still there.
Nope, looks like we won’t be seeing our little ol’ friend today.He watched the cars merging into the ongoing traffic. Other homeless people still gathered under makeshift tents near and under the overpass, their faces hidden by hoods pulled up over their heads. Well, things could be worse, I guess.Lian put his head back and closed his eyes, his hand now resting on his backpack next to him. The car’s motion along with the sound of the rain almost lulled him to sleep. He rubbed his eyes and looked out as the car slowed and the gate opened.
“Tri-Asterisk Academy, sir,” Fila announced as the car edged forward.
Lian quickly went through the identification process at the gate, sticking his head out the side window until his face came up on the monitor. The car moved forward and into a long procession of other vehicles lined up in front of him. He looked out to see if he could spot Gabriel. His eyes moved toward the three statues, still there marking the entrance to the academy.
“My old friends,” he said while looking up at the familiar figures. The rain and grey skies somehow made the three statues seem even more eerie with flashes of lightning reflecting off each one as they stood frozen in their triangular positions. He shifted his eyes as the car crept up closer, looking at the reptilian head on the one statue. The rain dripped slowly down its bronze face, almost making it appear like tears were running from its eyes.
Lian turned his head away quickly. Again, his thoughts turned to just wanting to have a normal school year.
“Pull over right here, Fila. With the rain pouring down, this is about as close as we’re going to get for a while, it appears.” Lian grabbed his backpack as the car stopped and the door opened up, his seat belt sliding off. He held the bag over his head as he ran toward the front door, the rain pelting around him. He peered out at the dark clouds looming over the academy, low and deep thunder grumbling in the background.
“Hopefully this isn’t a bad omen.”
“Hey, Lian.” Gabriel grabbed his shoulder, holding an umbrella and pulling Lian under it with him. “You gotta be prepared for these monsoon rains.”
Lian smiled, relieved to see him. It was always a comfort just knowing he had his childhood friend with him in such a foreboding place. He still couldn’t shake the feeling of not fitting in at the academy. Most of the time, Lian couldn’t tell if he wanted that situation to change or not.

Keywords:  Young Adult, Science Fiction, Mystery, Dystopian, Serpents, Los Angeles


Website URL: www.clhagely.com

Facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/C.L.Hagely

Twitter handle: CLHagely