Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Forever Steel Blog Tour

Forever Steel A Men of Steel Novella
Prequel to Men of Steel Series
By MJ Fields
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Erotica
* Can be read before or after reading the Men of Steel Series.


Cyrus, Jase, Zandor, and Xavier Steel work at their family owned tattoo shop, Forever Steel, during the day and sometimes into the night. When the shop closes these tattooed, pierced, alpha, bad boys play hard. Real hard.
To celebrate Xavier’s birthday and Cyrus becoming a home owner they decide to throw a party. But first they need to come up with the house rules. No shoes, No sleepovers, No bullshit. With rules set in place it’s time to get the party started.
It’s BYOB, bring your own batteries, because they ain’t providing them. Get ready you’re in for one hell of a party. Raise your glass for a toast to Forever Steel.

MJ Fields had no clue what she was getting into when she began the journey of writing. She say’s, ‘I still don’t–but I like it!’
Her imagination became apparent at age three. Sigma was her very first (imaginary) boyfriend. He lived about fifteen miles from her family’s farm. She took him chicken noodle soup every night on one of their snowmobiles.(Summer, Fall, Winter, and Spring). Apparently he was very ill and ‘Thank God’ she was able to take care of him.
At eight her love for writing blossomed. Together with her cousins (of course she was the president) they wrote a newsletter and sold it to their family members.
Years later she decided to put it back into print to entertain her cousin as she was on an aircraft carrier on 9/11, very far away from home during a scary time for our country.
Fast forward to 2012. She read 50 Shades and thought, ‘I wanna do that!’ (meaning writing).
She has two complete series, The Love Series and Wrapped. There are also two new series Burning Souls and Men of Steel that are as of now not complete. Thirteen books in sixteen months. CrAzY and wonderful.
She loves love!
Her Mom raised her right. She says please and thank you and means it. She expects the same out of her child. ‘It’s the right thing to do.’
Her mother taught her to take care of herself and others. ‘I don’t like leaving the house without mascara even if I’m in an oversized hoody and warm up pants.’
Her Dad taught her how to work hard and never expect to be handed anything. She likes to work and doesn’t mind getting dirty.
Both taught her to be respectful and the importance of doing the right thing regardless of what people around her do. They taught her about the importance of family and that it didn’t always just include blood relatives. They also tried to teach her how to keep my thoughts to myself…she is still working on that.
MJ tends to enjoy watching people grow and change with self realization and moments of clarity that just sneak up behind you and smack you in the head.
She loves people and has always been able to see both sides of a story. ‘Each person that comes into our life leaves us with something it is what we choose to do with it that helps us grow.’
She lives in central New York in the middle of nowhere and is surrounded by family and friend most the time. She ran a small business out of her home and has recently closed her door to pursue this dream full time. She spends time writing and doing the typical Mommy things. Her house is full of pets, friends, and noise ninety percent of the time, and she would have it no other way.
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Xavier (Men of Steel #4)

Releasing April 29th

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Twenty three year old Xavier is out to prove his independence to his brothers and Momma Joe.

Needing a change Xavier Steel decided to plant his feet in the Jersey sand and start a production company allowing him the ability to re acquaint himself with his true passion in life and make a living doing what he loved, playing and creating music.

Taelyn Patrick is offered an opportunity to make much needed extra money. The hours would be grueling, but she doesn't care. She needs the money to help her fiancĂ©’ Daniel. Daniel and Taelyn had lived together and went to the same college when he was accepted into the medical program at Harvard. Together they made the decision to live separately until Taelyn finished her internship and graduated from college. They had looked at several apartments near Harvard together and fell in love with one. Supporting two households would be a huge financial burden but they knew the apartment would be gone if they waited until she graduated; when they would reunited and again live together.

Taelyn was offered an opportunity she could not afford to turn down. She wasn’t looking forward to helping a spoiled kid start a production company that she was sure would fail. She was less enthusiastic when his mother, her boss, asked that she be available at all times. Josephina explained that she was worried about woman taking advantage of her son financially and damage his kind heart.

Can Xavier curb his sexual appetite and become a responsible young man? Or will he find himself in bed with women who will do whatever they have to for there own financial gain?

Men of Steel Series

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Friday, April 18, 2014

Raven's Breath by Tish Thawer Excerpt, Giveaway and Review ~Kami

4/ 14 Free 2 week
Raven can breathe life into you, or suck the life from you...the choice is yours!

They say your life flashes before your eyes when you die. But what you didn't know...your last thoughts determine whether Raven becomes your Grim Reaper or your Saving Grace.


After Raven dies she is given a job by Death, to be a Grim Reaper and she is given a set of black wings. I immediately liked Raven a lot. She is a spunky character. The writing and pacing of this book were really good. I was immediately drawn into Raven's world and it held my interest. 4 stars

Tish Thawer writes paranormal romances for all ages, including her new adult series The Rose Trilogy, and her adult paranormal romance, The Ovialell Series, as well as young adult short-stories. Her magickal elements and detailed world-building are a welcome constant in every novel.

Before becoming a writer she worked as a computer consultant, a photographer, and a graphic designer. She also operates a custom glass etching business, in addition to being a wife and mother of three wonderful children.

She's been a fan of the paranormal for as long as she can remember. Anything to do with superpowers, myth and magic has always held a special place in her heart.  From her first paranormal cartoon, Isis, to the phenomenon that is Twilight, this genre has always been a part of her life.
A common FAQ: "How do you pronounce her last name?"
Answer: Think "Bower" or "Thow-er." It's Persian! 

Tish Thawer
* * * * *
Raven's Breath
Published by Amber Leaf Publishing
Copyright 2013 by Tish Thawer
All rights reserved


Siren's blared, cutting through the quiet night. I watched from the shadows as the man who'd just been hit by a taxi lay bleeding on the frigid, grime covered ground. People gathered and were staring at the gruesome scene, while the driver of the taxi sat on the curb, crying into his hands.
I scanned the crowd, picking out who'd seen death before and who hadn't.
I could always tell.
As he took his last breath, my attention snapped back to the dying man. Images began to take shape in his mind; images that due to my job, I, too, could see.
Snapshots of him riding a motorcycle for the first time, of him falling in love, of his big successful promotion at work...all images of him. It was the usual replay of one's life flashing before their eyes as they die. When the replay stopped, it was time for me to go to work.
I stepped out of the shadows and took two steps in his direction. To the people watching, his wide eyes marked his final passing, but to me they continued to grow as he took in my features: my dark hair blowing in the wind, my curvaceous body wrapped in tight black leather, my large wings the color of the night sky. No one could see me but him, for he now resided in the my world. I extended my hand and offered my usual greeting. "My name is Raven and I'm here to help you."
He reached for my hand then looked back to take a final look at his body, as most of them do. "Am I really dead?"
"And you're the..."
"Grim Reaper."
This was the exact conversation I'd had with thousands of souls, which was why I knew that now would be the best time to comfort him, before he got scared to death––no pun intended––and tried to flee from me.
I extended my wings and let my divine light radiate from within. "Please don't fear. I'm only here to help you find peace."
This usually worked since I looked more like an angel with wings than the old man with a scythe that most people envisioned. Maybe that's why I'd been chosen to become the first female Reaper in history. I think the boys had been losing too many souls.

"The fissure his words caused within me elicited a strange dueling reaction. My first thought was to rip him limb from limb, but at the same time, I wanted to spread my wings, burst free of this place, fly home, and cry my eyes out. ~ Raven"

"Garrett may be a pencil pusher for all intents and purposes, but he was one of those hot geeky types that when you looked closely enough, you could see he had a real Clark Kent/Superman vibe going on. He was tall and built with dark hair and beautiful blue eyes. We'd never dated and never would, but as I stared at the perfect man asleep on my couch, I knew if we had...I would've been the lucky one. ~ Raven"

"I stared, taking in her porcelain skin, dark gothic makeup, and long platinum hair. I wanted to rant and rave, to verbalize all the venomous thoughts pooling on my tongue, but as Death's icy stare bored into me, I quickly gained control of my emotions and introduced myself instead. ~ Raven"

  • Giveaway  Autographed copy of Raven's Breath and Swag Pack, US ONLY

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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Engulfed (North Wing Trilogy #1) by Barbara C. Doyle Review ~Kami

Title: Engulfed (North Wing #1)
Author: Barbara C. Doyle
Genre: YA Paranormal Romance, SciFi, Fantasy
Publisher: Bayou Brew Publishing
Tour Host: Lady Amber's Tours

Ebony can feed on people's negativity. She also has visions of an angel that is protecting her. There are similarities with Beautiful Creatures, in that Ebony will be claimed by either the light or the dark. There are two sexy dudes vying for her attention: Cadan and Nicholas. This is a well written story. The pacing was good and I found the characters interesting and likeable. 4 stars

Synopsis:Troubled, abandoned and left for dead in the high society of the North Wing, Ebony Falls continues to live her life haunted by her past. Even living in a mansion with a movie star foster mother, she can only think of the night that changed her life forever.

And it all started with the boy with golden eyes.

Accepting the task of saving the life of Ebony Falls, Guardian Angel Nicholas descends to the surface to protect the girl from the shadows. Consumed in the desire the Prophecy holds in the Heavens, Nicholas ventures into all new depths that draws his heart to Ebony’s. However, when he can no longer put her at risk of his own selfish desires, he pushes Ebony away and watches as she lands in the arms of his sworn enemy.

And together, their fates are Engulfed.

Author Bio:Barbara C. Doyle became an Amazon bestselling author at only the age of seventeen.
Growing up in a small town in central New York proved no challenge for the young writer. Taking a risk of sharing her work with the world enabled her first true endeavor into the author life, signing a contract with Bayou Brew Publishing for The North Wing Trilogy, and not long after signing with Crushing Hearts and Black Butterfly Publishing for The Fearless Trilogy. Currently finishing her senior year in high school, she is preparing for her future endeavors either into the work field or college.
Her ultimate goal is to become an International Bestselling author, and tour the world on endless amounts of book signings, while continuing to write in multiple different genres.

I just want people to see that they can do anything they set their mind to, no matter how old they are. I was fortunate enough to get an early start on my writing career, and I hope that takes me even farther in life. Hearing that I’m in inspiration to people is success in itself.”
Author Links:

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Hiding from your own party?” a voice said from my doorway. My eyes flew over to Cadan. He leaned against the door frame with his shoulder in a sling.  
Didn’t feel well,” I said. His eyes shone a beautiful red shade and glowed in the darkness of the room. His free hand was stuffed in the pocket of his dark blue jeans. He wore a black button down shirt that accented his toned upper arms, stopping just below his waist.  
He smiled, showing beautiful white teeth. “You don’t have to fight it, you know,” he said looking around my room.
What is that supposed to mean?” I asked, sitting up in bed. I tugged on my hoodie, zipping it up, so nothing showed. Usually, I didn’t let anybody into my room. It was the only place I was not tempted to steal energy. But Cadan didn’t give off any energy.  
Cadan’s eyes traveled to me and locked on my arms.
The hunger, Ebony,” he replied. “You don’t have to fight it. It is part of who you are. It will never go away.” He focused on my sleeves. “Why do you cover them?” he asked quietly.
My body froze.
How did he know about the hunger? How did he know about my scars? Had he heard about them from people around school?  
I don’t know what you’re talking about,” I said quietly, rubbing my arms.  
Cadan walked into my room and stopped in front of me. My heart jumped into my throat.
You know exactly what I’m talking about,” he whispered, touching his finger to my arm.
My body shook as my eyes traveled to his hand. His burning hot fingers rubbed my sleeve until it rose past my wrists showing the bottom of my scar. I reached to pull my sleeve back down, but Cadan gently caught my hand in his.
You’re ashamed,” he muttered, caressing the exposed skin on my arm. His honey sweet voice made my stomach fill with butterflies as his scorching hot touch made me shudder.  
Not ashamed,” I answered him in a whisper. “I’m embarrassed.”
He frowned. “You shouldn’t be,” he replied. He took my hoodie’s zipper in his fingers and slowly pulled it down. My heart raced out of control.
Why was I letting him undress me?
I stared at his pale hands as they slid my hoodie off of my shoulder. His thumb gently caressed my bare skin, slowly trailing down my arm until it reached my scars. His touch made my heart fill with foreign pleasure.  
I closed my eyes.  
His touch slipped me deeper into a trance that connected us. When he touched me, I felt his emotions behind his cautious barrier.  
So beautiful,” he said dangerously close to me.
Kiss him!  The Whisperers hissed.  
I cracked open my eyes to see Cadan’s lips only an inch from mine. The Whisperers always told me to do things I would never usually do. They seemed eager for me to kiss Cadan, and as close as he was, I easily could have.  
Cadan’s eyes were focused on my scars. His pointer finger slowly traced the marks around my wrist, leaving tiny shocks on every inch of me he touched.  
My breathing quickened as his eyes trailed to mine.
Startled, I looked into his red eyes. They were mixed with an electric orange and framed with thick black lashes. He blinked once, settling the trance I was stuck in.  
My heart threatened to melt inside of me as it went into overdrive. My lungs shut off. Air in. Air out. Come on, Ebony. Just breathe. I inhaled slowly and shakily exhaled as I studied at his face.  
You obviously don’t know what beautiful is,” I whispered.
Make a move, Young Blood! The Whisperers cried.
I shook my head. “How do you know about the feed? I don’t understand, Cadan…” The feed was something I had never seemed to be able to get out of my head. The hunger was always with me, but I never told anyone. So how did Cadan know?
I know a lot about it, sweetness.” He took a daring step forward, pulling me up, so we stood chest to chest. With his free hand, he tangled his fingers in my hair.  
The hunger inside of me flooded my body, but it wasn’t the same hunger I felt when I was around others. It was a new hunger. A new addiction my body wanted to feed on.
You should take a step back,” I struggled. “Please? I need…” Air, I pleaded silently. I need air!  
He tipped my head up with two fingers, stroking my jaw as we locked eyes. I bit my lip harder until it stung. If I opened my mouth, I would feed. I couldn’t give in.
But it hurt too much.
You can’t hurt me,” he assured me with a smile on his face. He leaned closer until his lips teased my ear. “You can’t feed on the soulless.”
I closed my eyes tightly. Cadan combed his fingers through my hair and pressed my head against his chest in comfort. My throat burned so badly I wanted to break down.
Ebony?” somebody called in a strained voice from my doorway.
I pushed myself away from Cadan to see Luke staring at me. His expression was broken as he looked at his step brother. Black shadows radiated off of him—the blackest I’ve ever seen—hatred.
He clenched his fists and walked out of my room.
Without hesitating, I slipped my hoodie back on and ran out after him. “Luke, wait!” I pleaded. Luke made his way out the front door, punching the frame. I ran until I caught up to him. I grabbed his arm.
He turned around with an angry expression on his face. His energy was so strong I felt it against my lips. The hunger burst inside of my body.  
What?” he snapped. He moved away from me.  
You don’t understand—”
He rolled his eyes and spat, “I’m sorry I interrupted whatever the hell was going on. Tell Cadan, I apologize.”
You didn’t interrupt anything—”
You never let anybody see your arms!” he growled at me. He looked down at my hoodie. “You’ve known me forever, and you never showed me your arms. Are you afraid? Why would you let my step brother see something that will always be a part of you, when you can’t even show me?”
Tears threatened my eyes as I crossed my arms on my chest trying to remain calm. Luke had never yelled at me.  
I can’t deal with people seeing them. Cadan…he… I’m not sure what to tell you,” I said in a small voice that was no more than a whisper. “Cadan understands. Even though we’ve only know each other for a little while, he knows that I’m not like other people.”
What is a ‘little while’ compared to a lifetime?” he belittled. “Jesus, Ebony you were all over him! His hands…” He clenched his fists tightly and hit the tree next to him. “I only came to this stupid party to be with you. Okay? I didn’t come here to see Cadan get into your pants.”
I looked up at him with wide eyes. “Cadan was not getting into my pants,” I returned coldly.  “And what happened between Cadan and me wasn’t going to go any further than that.”
Luke rolled his eyes. “His hands were all over you, Ebony. And you weren’t exactly fighting him off. You looked like you were going to devour him!”
What the hell is your deal?” I hissed at him, throwing my hands in the air. “Let it go, Luke! If you don’t simmer down, something might happen that I won’t be proud of!”
Luke clenched his jaw. “Like what, Ebony? Are you going to hurt me?” His chest rose and fell heavily as he squeezed his fists so tight his whole hand turned white.
His anger increased until it was about to burst.
My hunger took over as I stepped into Luke. I pressed my lips to his, letting all of his shadow absorb into me. I felt him start to shake less. The anger subsided as he put his hands on my waist.
Luke’s anger slowly turned to content. I was too hungry. It was like I had finally found the salvation that I had been starved of for so long. I kept feeding until Luke’s face grew pale.
My lips parted his to absorb even more energy. My stomach rumbled in praise as the Whisperers laughed at the sight. Luke’s tongue danced against mine, but I was too focused on the feed to feel the unreadable emotion that came with kissing my best friend.  
Another minute passed. And then another, until somebody grabbed my arm and threw me to the ground. I snapped out of the feed and watched Luke fall to his knees in weakness. My hunger disappeared.  
I looked up at Cadan to see him staring at his step brother. “Welcome to the dark side, sweetness,” he murmured right before I blacked out.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Eternal Gift (The Eternal Series #1) by Candy Crum Review ~Kami

Title: The Eternal Gift
Author: Candy Crum
Genre: Adult Paranormal Romace
Tour Host:
Lady Amber's Tours

Book Description:A young girl (Kailah) discovers that she is from a lost and forgotten powerful Immortal blood line after she meets a strange new physician at work. She begins to have visions and see spirits and has trouble controlling bad things from happening when she is angry. Along the way she discovers the terrible truth about who she is and the incredible power that is locked away deep inside her. Her Immortal ancestors want to use her to destroy the vampire race. Vampires want to use her power to destroy her Immortal ancestors. But hiding in the shadows are those who have been watching her since she was born. They want to help Kailah discover who she is and help her learn to use her abilities. They simply want for her to make the right decision before it's too late. Unfortunately for them time is not on their side and the Rogue Vampires have plans for Kailah no one could have imagined.


This story has a promising premise. A girl has visions of a woman fighting a vampire which comes true. Kailah has abilities and she belongs to a race of immortals. But somehow it wasn't coming together for me. I liked the idea but I thought the story needed more development. I couldn't get a good feel for Kailah and I wasn't caring as much about her story as I would have liked. The writing is promising and I feel that the author does have talent. This is the beginning of a series, so maybe it will get better as it continues. 3 stars.

Author Bio:
Candy Crum lives in Indiana and is the Author of “The Eternal Series” and other short
stories. She published her first novel, The Eternal Gift, in May of 2011 and has been publishing ever since. Candy is an avid lover of the paranormal genre, stemming from years of reading the Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice when she was a teenager. Later, she developed a deep love of the Vampire Academy Series by Richelle Mead and the House of Night Series by P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast, furthering her love of the genre and pushing her to really push to finish and publish her novel.

Since then, Candy has released three other books in The Eternal Series and will release another later in 2014. Now, Candy is trying her hand at more contemporary pieces of work, like that of Lean on Me and other books she will release in 2014.

Some of Candy’s interests include the usual reading and writing, music (of most types), movies (action and comedy or any combination of the two), cartoons (she loves to say that her children watch cartoons because she does), and drawing. She loves talking with her fans and loves reading the reviews that her fans are kind enough to leave for her. Always feel free to find Candy on Facebook and send her a message!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Nanee's Review of Daring in Dreams by Brandie Buckwine


Forced to drop out his senior year, Nico tries to move past the loss of his parents and throws himself into the business his family built for his future, a future he's always resented. Torn between his dreams and reality, he discovers his goals might not be what his heart truly wants. 

With a new teaching career, Vera's life is neat and tidy, even if her shy nature keeps her from getting what she wants. When circumstances push her out of her home and into cohabitation with three guys from her past, the stress of living with her long-time crush, Nico, and the continued presence of a stalker, turns her tidy life upside down and makes her face a side of herself that should send her screaming. 

Despite a distant one-night stand - one she denies and he barely remembers - Vera and Nico work around an awkward friendship and learn that false assumptions may keep them from finding true love. 

Due to strong language, explicit sexual situations, and mature themes, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18. 

A 76,000 word novel by tfc Parks, writing as Brandie Buckwine

Nanee's Review:

I love Brandie Buckwine's stories so I couldn't wait to read this one. I absolutely loved this book, I fell for the characters right from the beginning especially Nico. I loved Nico, he's sexy, sweet, funny and did I say sexy? Vera is sometimes shy but she's cute and funny and so in love with Nico but Nico doesn't know it...this story is so unique, I loved how the writer wrote Nico and Vera's interactions in the beginning, Nico sort of remembers a hot night with Vera a long time ago and Vera doesn't remember it at all, lol. Nor does she believe it ever happened..When Vera moves in with the guys the fun begins...I love when the guys are playing a game on the tv and in walks Vera, they sit there stunned with their mouths open at what they see (I laughed so hard) . Vera and Nico are perfect for each other, I just wish they would give in to the other. Love their getting to know each other and flirty stage too. Vera's friend Grant is a little off too me (It'll make sense once you read it) don't want to ruin anything by giving too much way but you have to read this story, it is sexy as hell, funny and intriguing all in one...the way Brandie tells the story you will be dragged in right from the start..Loved every minute of this book...5 stars 

(again I want to say more but don't want to ruin anything)...Love me some Nico though!!! Hot hot hot...

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Friday, April 11, 2014

Nanee's Review of Misunderstood by Kathryn Kelly

Book Description:

John Donovan has been left in charge of the Death Dwellers' MC while the club president is on his honeymoon. With six days left till Outlaw's return and smooth sailing so far, trouble suddenly bubbles up. As the clock ticks, he's determined to bring everything under control.
Kendall Miller, an attorney and the ex-girlfriend of another MC president, is in deep problems. When her little sister is taken by her ex, she needs to supply information to a man who is frantic for information on the highest ranking members of Johnnie's club. When she suddenly shows up at the clubhouse and arouses the suspicions of a very handsome blond biker, she finds herself being taken as his prisoner. 
Evil is all around them. To save herself and her sister, Kendall has to rely on the man she betrayed. To save his club, Johnnie has to trust Kendall's story. Before it's too late. Because lives will be lost and hearts will be broken. 

WARNING: This isn’t an easy or light read. Please be advised. The way to Johnnie’s and Kendall’s resolution involves death, violence, destruction, a rape scene and suicide

Nanee's Review:

Wow! Kathryn Kelly did it again, she dragged me in and didn't let go until the end. This story is a emotional roller coaster, I cried, I cringed and I breathed a sign of relief when it was all over. There's a lot going on here and I couldn't help but feel involved in these characters lives.  There's just something about Johnnie that I couldn't resist, I wanted him happy, we all know how he feels about Megs and I feel for him, but we also know her and Christopher are meant to be so I wanted Johnnie to have that same happiness they have. In walks Kendall. I'm torn with her, her character was a little up and down for me, shes trying to save her sister but at the same time is a emotional wreck due to her upbringing and ex and she's damaged and hurt and what she needs is Johnnie to make it all better, there was just something missing with her. Johnnie is a knight in shining armor with Kendall and I liked them together. The story had a lot of WTF moments and I loved every minute of it. Mortician plays a larger role in this story along with Bailey K-P's daughter and its good to get to know them better. I got teary eyed many times during this story, this author sure knows how to write drama and bring you to your knees. Secrets are revealed and lives are lost but their family core is as strong as ever. When Meggie and Christopher come back from their honeymoon their family is one again. This was a great story and cant wait for Val and Zoanne's story, we learn a lot about Zoanne too. Amazing, dramatic, emotional and loving...That how I would describe this story. Love Little Man too..too freakin cute 4.5 stars

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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Magic and Murder Among the Dwarves by Erik Bundy Review and Giveaway ~Kami

Title: Murder and Magic Among the Dwarves
Author: Erik Bundy
Genre: Paranormal Mystery
Publisher: Untold Press
Tour Host:
Lady Amber's Tours


Andrea is psychic and lives next door to dwarves. A female dwarf comes to her in the middle of the night and asks for her help. Her dead husband's ghost tries comes to her to try to warn her. And a demon is hunting her. This is a well-written, fast paced story, full of magic and adventure. 4 stars.

Amanda is used to living a life that is less than ordinary. Haunted nightly by her late husband, she is a psychic living next door to a colony of dwarves. Despite males normally taking on the task, the colony’s females ask her to find a lost baby for them, and then hire her to tell them who strangled their midwife with a diaper and cut out her gossiping tongue.
She’s thrilled at the honor, but Amanda must learn to tame her own unruly psychic power.  The shadowy side of her gift raises a demon that attacks her, stalks her, and slashes her hand.   When she feels something live wriggle in her wound, she knows no one can fight her battle for her.  She must face her demon alone.
The town’s sheriff asks Amanda to help him solve the disappearance of a missing teenage girl.  Her involvement in this case brings a predator into her life, an enemy who allies himself with her demon.  To make matters worse, the midwife’s murderer comes after her, too.  Amanda, though, has no intention of becoming anyone’s victim.
Death is no longer her worst possible fate.

Author Bio:
Erik Bundy lives in the magical North  Carolina woods where chocolate is a semi-sweet vegetable, female chipmunks are called chipnuns, and mice claiming to be cousins move in for the winter then take the bath towels when they leave in spring.  The federal government pays him not to work in one of their offices.  He is a graduate of the Odyssey Fantasy Writing Workshop and a grand prize winner of the Sidney Lanier Poetry Competition.  He has published more than thirty stories and poems.

Connect with Erik:
Book Trailer:


Fate didn't announce itself by rapping its hard-luck knuckles against my green cottage door. Nor did it bother to crawl in through my cranked-open bathroom window. So I gave it no more attention than I did the mountain air I breathed every day. That was my downfall, my sin. Fate might forgive greed, gluttony, or even bloodlust, but it never ignores being ignored. It punished my neglect with death and a demon. It yoked guilt like a leprous shadow to my heels.
Fate's wakeup call came to me one cool spring night after I had lived on Crying Woman Lane for about a year. I was in bed, just skirting along the edge of sleep, when a guttural, female voice called, "Amanda," through my window screen.
My bedside clock, instead of displaying numbers, looked back at me with a luminous green eye. Startled, I watched it, waiting to see if this obvious sign would make its meaning known. The eye winked, and the clock became normal again with the numbers 11:02 brightly displayed. The numbers added up to four, the number of wholeness. It didn't describe me at the moment.
Fully awake, I rose up on one elbow, tucked a tuft of hair behind my right ear, and listened. Beyond my open window, the tidal racket of katydids rose and fell with the shrill anguish of self-centered insects braying for sex. I stayed quiet, hoping the female would go away but knowing I shouldn't let her leave. The sign indicated this meeting was important. On the other hand, my body felt raw and jangled with a restless need for sleep. She could come back.
A second time she called my name from the tangle of darkness and moonlight in the woods. At least it was not a ghost's voice. It had breath in it. The throaty intonation, though, was not quite human, the vowels veined in iron, the consonants ancient and startling.
"Not tonight," I yelled back.
"Now," the female insisted.
I punched my pillow. My eyes felt dry as dust, gritty, and probably looked as though threaded with varicose veins. One consolation was that they paid in gold, and come flood or parching drought, I was going to make them pay me a bucketful of nuggets this time.
Peevish as a cat sprayed with a garden hose, I delayed getting up and wished mouth sores on the jolly, jowly realtor who had sold me this cottage a year before.
Handing me two sets of door keys, he had said, "There's one other little thing you might want to know." His blue eyes twinkled. "Most of your neighbors are a bit peculiar. They live in a colony and only come above ground after dark."
I knew about dwarves, of course. Everybody did, but I hadn't known my newly bought property bordered the treaty land of one of their colonies. The realtor had lied by saying nothing. He had conned me, a young widow, and deserved the ulcerated mouth I wished on him now.
When the realtor saw his late disclosure angered but didn't alarm me, he threw his head back and yodeled laughter at a ceiling fan.
"They're allergic to sunlight, see." His eyes widened with mock delight. "It paralyzes them, turns them into granite statues." He held up an open hand. "Scout's honor, petrifaction is their preferred method of suicide. It's painless, see. It's clean and saves their families the cost of a funeral pyre."
He patted my arm as if to let me know I didn't need to thank him for the favor of his settling me near these considerate suicides. Not amused, I flinched away from his presumptive familiarity. Sourwood was a valley village isolated by mountains, a place where everyone bumped into everyone else often. He and I would meet again.
"Don't expect a Christmas card from me," I told him and punched his forearm.
All the same, the realtor had been wrong, and I took childish satisfaction in that. Tall Tristan, he with the precious green eyes, and my closest human neighbor, had put the lie to that tale. The suicidal dwarves didn't turn themselves into fossils to save their heirs the price of a funeral pyre. No, they did it for revenge.
They bequeathed a monumental problem to their daughters and sons. Where do you put Uncle Steen after he has become a statue of himself? The irascible Uncle Steens of the colony usually committed suicide because they felt unwanted and ignored. On their granite faces after death were the smirks of those who knew they now had their kinfolks' full attention, even if only for long enough to find permanent storage for them.
So why would a female dwarf come calling on me? Did she want to use my psychic power, my oddsense, to find another killer? I had already solved two dwarf murders for Brialdur, the colony's sheriff. He had been considerate enough, though, to come calling just after sunset while I was still awake.
A chesty cough for attention outside curtailed my reverie of resentment. I was not being neighborly. I glanced at the clock and saw only the time, no eye or other sign. Oh well, you couldn't ignore a dwarf any more than you could the constant flush of a stuck toilet.
I slipped out of my canopied bed and slid into a fuzzy white robe that fit my body like a sock. The dwarf outside knew I had gotten out of bed. She could hear a spider tickle along its web toward a struggling fly.
I baby-stepped through my dark living-room so as not to stub my toes against furniture, wrenched open the cottage's reluctant front door, and strutted outside onto the moonlit porch. There I knuckled my fists into my hips and stood balanced on both feet, my back straight, posed as if to wrestle any half-quart boogeyman that dared show up. I was a modern young woman, fearless and capable (with mace spray in my robe's right pocket), and I didn't care who knew it. Attitude was everything when dealing with dwarves.

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