Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Addicted to Writing Presents: My Angel by Christine Young $0.99

My Angel by Christine Young
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level:


When her father decided to send her to a finishing school back East, Angela Chamberlain refused to be confined to stuffy drawing rooms. Instead, the daring spitfire who could shoot like a man and ride like the wind longed for a life of adventure and romance—and she knew exactly who could give it to her. Devil Blackmoor was a hired gun with a dangerous reputation. But Angela was willing to go to the ends of the earth to capture the handsome devil's heart.

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. Yet standing between them were more obstacles than either ever dreamed. For Devil had strapped on a gun for the wrong man. And that made Angela his enemy. Now he'll have to choose between his duty and the woman he loves more than life.


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, and when he smiled, one edge of his mouth tilted crookedly. Ange­la's heart swooned and fluttered, and she thought she might never breathe again.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Addicted to Writing Presents Tell Tale Tuesday: Shadow Warrior by Courtney Rene

Shadow Warrior
Courtney Rene
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 1

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Sunny finally makes her first jump to the Kingdom of Acadia that is on the other side of the shadows, for what she hopes is a vacation.  Only her vacation turns into quite an unwanted adventure.  Aside from new and unexpected issues regarding her relationship with Leif, Sunny meets the rebel group, makes new friends, fights with controlling her powers, and finds herself neck deep within a county that is torn apart by two sides, each fighting for power.  Acadia is not quite what she imagined.  How is she, one young girl, supposed to unite the Kingdom as well as unseat a King to take her place as ruler of Acadia. 


"Mom, we have been through this. It's only ten days." My mom and I were at it again. The same fight we had been having for the past month. Spring break had finally arrived and would officially begin the next day, and that was the day that Leif and I had decided to make my first trip to Acadia. It was the perfect time to go. I was thinking of it as a much needed vacation. It was a chance to pop into Acadia, have a look around, and come home. Do the whole meet and greet thing. The how we were getting there was still a mystery, but I would figure it out soon enough, or as soon as Leif told me.

My mom, well she was not real keen on the whole idea. In fact, you could say that my mom and dad weren't too happy with the whole shadow walking thing at all, which means, they were pretending there was no such thing. I could try and bring it up, try to get them to understand, but they just changed the subject every time and stayed in their nice, safe reality. I understood, really I did. It was just a bit annoying.

"You are not going, and that's final."

"Mom," I said, sighing the word. "How do you plan on stopping me? You know this is something I have to do. We've been through this."

"I'm telling you, you're not allowed, that should be enough." She stood there, wringing her hands which made me feel a twinge of guilt. Her brown eyes were upset, and her lips quivered. "Please don't go, Sunny. You won't come back."

I told Leif my parents would be a problem. He never listened. "Of course, I will. I'll come back. This is my home."

"No, you won't. You'll leave to go to, and I'll never see you again."

I walked over and stood directly in front of her and took her cold hands into mine. She was several inches taller than my five feet four inches, so I had to look up to see her face. "I promise I will come back, in ten days. Easter Sunday, I'll be back. I expect turkey and homemade noodles to be waiting," I added with a smile.

I didn't want to fight with her. She didn't really want to fight with me either. We both knew I was going, and we both knew there was nothing she or dad could do about it.

Everything had changed since August when I'd discovered that a race of humans existed that could walk in the shadows, and that I was one of them. I was not the easy going, boss me around girl that I had once been. Learning that I was a Shadow Walker was hard enough to take, but learning that I may also be royalty, was even harder. My Thanksgiving night battle with the Shadow Guard from Acadia had taken away the innocence that other girls my age still had.

I was afraid all the time now. I was afraid of the dark. Not really the dark, but what I couldn't see in the dark. I was afraid of being alone. Bad things happen when you're alone. Leif was taking my phobias rather well, thankfully, hardly ever leaving my side. He seemed to understand, which was a surprise, as I didn't. Then you had what no one knew but me, that I was afraid of my gift of energy control.

What a crock, I couldn't control it. Sometimes it seemed to be trying to control me. I would get startled, or when I was afraid, I would instinctively pull the energy to me and inside. I wouldn't even know I was doing it until I'd feel it zipping around in me.

I didn't want anyone to know, so I would slowly push the energy back out of me through my feet, into the ground. It burned and tore at me every time now. I hated that gift. Why did I have the gift of energy control when I was afraid to use it? What was the point? I was afraid of hurting someone, and I was afraid of the slicing pain that came with it every time.

Leif said time and again how cool my energy gift was. If he only knew what a real burden the gift was, I don't think he would have felt that way. Why didn't I tell him? I didn't want him to think of me as weak.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Addicted to Writing Presents Mystery Monday: A Doleful Kind of Singing by K. G. MacAbee

Title: A Doleful Kind of Singing
Author: K. G. McAbee
ISBN: 978-1-62420-077-9

Genre: Gothic Suspense
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 1

Ariela Harrington knows her brilliant father Cadmion couldn't have committed suicide in the icy waters of Loch Ness. So, being an independent young Victorian lady of some means, Ari and her servant Sophy proceed to Scotland to discover the truth, laughing when her guardian expressly forbids it. Near Loch Ness, Ari meets Carlie Douglas, an old friend of her father's who has much to tell her of Cadmion's last days. Then she meets Logan MacNiall, the laird who argued viciously with Cadmion, and on whose land her father's body was later found.  Dangers threaten, lies are discovered, past wrongs see the light of day after decades, and Ariela begins to wonder if she dare trust anyone. Then the disappearances begin...


It was dark when she awoke, and her aching body was racked with uncontrollable shivers. She tried to open her eyes, but something pressed against the tender lids, imprisoning them in a heavy softness, like a ton of feathers.
She opened her mouth to ask what was happening, where she was, why it was so cold.
Only a soft, strangled grunt issued from her mouth, barely loud enough to hear herself. Like her eyes, her tongue was a prisoner, crushed against her teeth by some thick, greasy mass tasting like death. Bile rose in her throat, threatening to choke her, but she fought it down with a mighty effort.
She twisted her head to one side, trying to spit out the horrible substance before it could sicken her further, but it filled her entire mouth and, tongue immobile, she couldn't force it out. She reached a hand up to remove the nasty thing.
Another shock reverberated through her, sending a fresh surge of pain through her throbbing head. She lay still for a moment, waiting for the pain to die down while she examined this new discovery.
She could not move her arms. Twisting her head—thank God she could move something, she thought, or she would have gone mad—she tried to turn over, to sit up, but her legs refused to obey her command, even as her arms had done. Both legs and arms felt so cold and far away, crisscrossed with narrow bands of sharp, icy pain.
Blindfolded, she realized. Gagged. Trussed like a rabbit. Her arms and legs were confined, preventing any movement.
Preventing her escape.
In all her life, she had never felt so helpless, so dizzy, so frightened. Nothing of her body, save her head, none of her senses, save for taste and smell and hearing, appeared to belong to her pain-racked body at all.
Taste and smell and hearing. Well then, she would use what senses she could until she found out where she was. She sniffed the air blowing across her face, blessing it for its movement even as she tried to distinguish its components.
Smoke, acrid and bitter. Not the usual comforting odors of burning oak or alder, or the comforting reek of coal. No, this was a smell she could not identify. It called out to something deep inside her, something ancient and wild, so invasive it seemed to be a part of each individual cell of her being.
Ridiculous, she chided herself as she twisted her head again. It was just a particularly nasty smell of something burning. She tried to concentrate around the pounding within her.
Ah, she heard the crackling and popping of a nearby fire. Something burning, that was all. The rest, those other strange thoughts of an ancient wildness, were just images in her newly awakened mind still confused and drugged with dreams.
The last cup of tea…the one she had hoped would calm her nerves when she had been so anxious to be away, to be searching for what she was convinced was the answer to her quest. She had sipped the tea to be polite, to please her host who had been so kind to her. The taste of the strange brew had been pleasant, almost seductive, soothing her jangled nerves and calming her racing mind.
But then, she remembered, just after she had set down the empty cup, the tingling had begun in her hands and feet, a tingling that had heralded the beginning of the series of dreams...
A dream of being scooped up by rough hands and carried for an incredible distance, her vision dim, her hearing muffled. Of crossing water with the rhythmic splash of oars, the occasional muffled curse from a harsh voice, droplets of cold water splashing onto her burning face. A dream of being tossed onto an uncomfortable bed full of rocks, prickling twigs, and gritty sand.
Then nothingness as she fell into a great, black, soundless pit.
Until now when a faint semblance of consciousness had returned to her battered and tethered body.
She tried again to speak. Another muffled croak, barely audible over the crackling of the fire, was all she heard. She prodded the obstruction in her mouth with her captured tongue and the foulness nearly choked her. She fought not to swallow, not to allow the horrible, seeping bitterness to enter her. An intense fear rose in her, threatened to send her reeling back into the darkness of unconsciousness as she fought for a breath.
Air. She needed air. She lashed her head from side to side, the fear of choking, of suffocation, threatening to overwhelm her.
A rough hand seized her chin, yanked the stifling mass from her mouth.
"Now be still," a voice—surely she knew that voice?—hissed in her ear, "or I'll ram it down your throat."
As the sweet air rushed down to her straining lungs, she thought how wonderful it tasted, how delightful it was to breathe in the air wafting over her; indeed, merely to breathe at all. For a time, she did nothing but suck in the glorious, smoke-tinged currents.
But as her fear of smothering dissipated a fraction, the wondering returned in full force.
Where am I?
Who brought me here?
Why have I been tied?



Sunday, September 27, 2015

Addicted to Writing Presents Romance Sunday: A Marriage of Inconvenience by Christine Young

Author: Christine Young
Genre: Historical Romance
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 4

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When the duchess decides to wed her to a wastrel and a fop, Ravyn Grahm takes matters into her own hands and declares her engagement to another man. Instead of fessing up and telling her great aunt what she has done, she goes through with the pretense. Aric Lakeland is the bastard son of an earl and has a dangerous reputation. But Ravyn is willing to do most anything to keep the duchess from discovering the lie.


He'd bought land in America, looking to put down roots and end his life of adventure, but Aric Lakeland got more than he bargained for when he encountered a beautiful heiress who made a promise she didn't want to keep. But the promise could not be undone and standing between them were more obstacles than either ever dreamed. Aric had made plans to spend the rest of his life in America and that was at odds with Ravyn's plan of living in England and running her father's estate. Now, he'll have to choose between his dreams and the woman he loves more than life.


Aric Lakeland dodged foot-traffic along the boulevard in a crazy attempt to keep up with the bouncing erratic carriage he followed. The day was intolerably hot and his mood was no better. He resented this mission. He’d left a cool pub and a cold brew to sweat beneath the hot sun.

His idea of fun was not traipsing after a notorious gambler and womanizer. Nor did he want to baby sit a spoiled debutante.

Yet, he’d promised. A wave of guilt washed through him.

Sweat beaded on his forehead, dripping down his face. He swiped it with the back of his hand and sidestepped, nearly knocking packages from a lady just exiting a dressmaker’s shop.

“You owe me, my friend. When this is done, I will collect,” he swore beneath his breath and began thinking of all the favors he might ask of his half brother.

The carriage he followed turned a corner and disappeared from sight. He plowed into a lamppost, swore again and raced through the crowds. Richy Richmond did not deserve this absurd protection. Richy could deal with his own affairs. The other part of his half brother’s request bothered Aric. He did not want anything to happen to the lady he followed. His half brother had reason to believe Richy might do something to compromise her. His gut instincts had never been wrong. Ravyn Grahm, cousin to his half brother’s wife, was in serious trouble.

Richy’s carriage came to an abrupt halt. Richy jumped from the vehicle. His cane in hand, he strode toward a dress shop Aric had reason to visit on occasion.

Aric watched, fascinated as the scene unfolded. He started forward but noticed Richy race to protect the women Aric followed. 

“You ruffians!  Get your hands off me!”  The white-haried Duchess shrieked, her age-lined face mottled with rage, pushing at two little guttersnipes who seemed more intent on shoving the elderly woman around than stealing the packages she carried.

Ravyn swiped her parasol across a boy’s head and turned to the other, her eyes blazing, shooting violet blue sparks.

“Stop it!” she cried out, raising her parasol again and again. “Take that!  And that!”

Amused, Aric leaned against a lamppost similar to the one he had run into earlier in his race to keep Richy’s carriage in view.

He crossed his arms over his chest, grinning as he watched Ravyn batter the boys who had had the audacity to try and harm the Duchess.

He chuckled, prepared to step in if needed but it appeared the two women had the situation under control. Ravyn, he mused, the regal, classy lady who seldom had a hair on her gorgeous head out of place was decidedly disheveled. Her cheeks were flushed, her hair flowed beautifully from its perfectly coiffed hairdo. Her jacket sleeve was torn and to his amazement, she grinned as if she were having the time of her life.

“Go on, get,” Richy stepped in, shooing the two boys away. He grabbed hold of one of the boy’s arms and shook him. “Patrol,” he yelled, looking around for help. The boy stomped on Richy’s foot. Surprised, Richy let go. “Bloody hell!  Come back here. Little brat,” he yelled as the boy ran off.

Aric cocked an eyebrow, watching and wondering what would happen next, knowing Richy had a card up his sleeve. He had not forgotten he was supposed to be watching Richy, nor had he forgotten the man had suffered innumerable losses at the gaming tables and the racetrack the last few days and he might do something to Ravyn.

Aric pushed away from the lamppost and strode toward the women and Richy. He watched Richy change demeanor. Suddenly instead of rescuer, he was attacker. Aric’s heart stopped for a moment then raced.

Richy wrenched Ravyn against him, pulling her close, her arm behind her back, his mouth close to her ear as if he whispered something to Ravyn.

“Let go,” Ravyn cried out, twisting and thrashing her arms. It seemed to be the opposite scenario as moments before. The crowds that had previously closed around the women had now dissipated.

“Let go,” Ravyn cried again. 

“You’re mine, Ravyn,” Richy said in a low well-modulated voice. “You should have realized it months ago and I’d have won the wager. But instead, you ignored me. You taunted me and sometimes you pretended to care while other times you turned up your pert little nose when I walked by.”

“What do you think you are doing?  Let go of me!”  Ravyn cried out, hatred now in her stormy violet eyes.

To Aric, she sounded incredulous, perhaps confused. But strangely, not afraid.

“We--“he paused a moment--“are going to Gretna Green. We are getting married and I will inherit your estate. You will be mine.”