Author: J.J. DiBenedetto

Author Spotlight – Annie Douglass Lima and “King of Malorn”

Author Spotlight – Annie Douglass Lima and “King of Malorn”


Thanks for stopping by! Take a look at this brand-new fantasy adventure story with a hint of romance by author Annie Douglass Lima. 
You can download a copy of the ebook for free between July 9th and 11th!

Book Description:
    Life as
the king’s younger sister should be exciting.

   Not for
Princess Kalendria. She’s sick of the dissent and of constantly having her
family undermined by those who think they could rule Malorn better than King
Korram.
   Hoping to
lighten the mood in the palace, Kalendria plans a ball to celebrate her
seventeenth birthday. It doesn’t hurt that their handsome Alasian ally King
Jaymin has promised to attend, and she’s been waiting for him to notice her for
as long as she can remember.
   But
unfriendly forces have their own party plans. When Kalendria, Korram, and
Jaymin barely survive an assassination attempt, their only recourse is to flee
into the wilderness. Tracked by unknown assassins, they must figure out whom
they can trust and who is behind the plot. Can Kalendria help her brother
reclaim his throne – oh, and catch Jaymin’s attention while she’s at it –
before they are all killed and war destroys both kingdoms?


Click here to download your copy of King of Malorn on Amazon now! 

 

Click here to see King of Malorn on Goodreads.

 

Series Information:



King of Malorn is book 5 in the Annals
of Alasia
. But don’t worry if you haven’t read the others; it will still make sense on its own. 



Each of the first four books can stand on its own as well. They each deal with events surrounding the same major political incident: the invasion
of the kingdom of Alasia by the neighboring kingdom of Malorn. 



Prince of Alasia begins on the night of the Invasion and
describes what happens to twelve-year-old Prince Jaymin after he is forced to
flee for his life. 

In
the Enemy’s Service

features a girl as the protagonist and tells the story of those who were not
able to escape from the Alasian palace when the enemy invaded. 

Prince of Malorn begins several months earlier and
focuses on the Malornian perspective of the events leading up to the
Invasion. 

The Nameless Soldier shows how a young Alasian soldier lives through the Invasion but then has to survive and make a name for himself in enemy-occupied Alasia. 


In each of the books, main
characters from the others make brief appearances and interact with each other
at the point where the timeframes and settings overlap. 



I also have a short
ebook of “interviews” that I conducted with the characters in the other three
books. Annals of Alasia: The Collected
Interviews
is not available on Amazon, but I send a free copy to anyone who
signs
up for my mailing list

(to receive updates when I release new books or occasionally offer them for free).



Author Biography:

Annie Douglass Lima considers herself
fortunate to have traveled in twenty different countries and lived in four of
them. A fifth-grade teacher in her “other” life, she loves reading to her
students and sparking their imaginations. Her books include science fiction,
fantasy, YA action and adventure novels, a puppet script, anthologies of her
students’ poetry, and Bible verse coloring and activity books. When she isn’t
teaching or writing, Annie can often be found sipping spiced chai or
pomegranate green tea in exotic locations, some of which exist in this world.
 
Author Contact Info:



Blog: http://anniedouglasslima.blogspot.com

 
 
 
 
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/author/anniedouglasslima
 
 
 
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Book Tour – “Chasing the Sunrise” by E.M. Rinaldi

Book Tour – “Chasing the Sunrise” by E.M. Rinaldi

Title: Chasing the Sunrise
Author: E.M. Rinaldi
Genre: YA Paranormal
Cover Designer: Regina Wamba at Mae I Design & Photography
Publisher: CHBB
Publication Date: May 30th, 2019
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR
Blurb:
Fate plays a fickle game and Casey knows better than most what it feels like to lose. Her triumph in defeating the Dean came at a price, one she’s still struggling to pay, and now she doesn’t know what to do to make the nightmares stop. Haunted by dark memories and decisions she regrets, it’s becoming impossible to keep pretending that everything is okay.
When Sebastian finally makes his move, the war has officially begun, and Cedric, Falon, and Casey now find themselves on the run—only this time, they have an entire school to protect. Sacrifices are made, relationships are tested, and hearts are broken as Casey tries to shield herself from the monster within while also preparing for the day she’s called upon to fulfil the prophecy.
With a Council that refuses to acknowledge the danger on their doorstep and a betrayal coming from the most unlikely of places, can Casey stay one step ahead of what destiny has planned? Or will she destroy everything she’s ever fought for, and herself in the process?
Buy Links:
Evading the Dark: http://amzn.to/2gpIQbo
Hiding till Dawn: https://amzn.to/2Oba2gj
Chasing the Sunrise: https://amzn.to/2YZcSJN
E.M. Rinaldi lives in Charlotte, North Carolina with her boyfriend, Milz, and their slightly psychotic pup, Boone. By day she is a Registered Radiologic Technologist taking pictures of mangled bones and by night she writes about all the bizarre situations her characters get themselves into while she was away. She is a Second Degree Blackbelt and can’t write a story without at least one fight scene in it.

When she’s not writing, or trapped at work, E.M. likes to read (obsessively), clear her DVR, and have all night Buffy marathons with her friends, complete with cookies and cinnamon rolls. 
Her love for writing stems from an early age where she would create stories on an old computer program and force anyone within grabbing distance to read them. Not much has changed; be warned: stay out of grabbing distance. 
Evading the Dark is her debut novel and the first of The Cross Chronicles.

Author Links: 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EvadingTheDark
Instagram:  @E.M.rinaldi
Amazon: 
http://amzn.to/2hsWFdZ
Buy Links:
Evading the Dark: http://amzn.to/2gpIQbo
Hiding till Dawn: https://amzn.to/2Oba2gj
Chasing the Sunrise: https://amzn.to/2YZcSJN
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Book Tour – “Drained” by G.K. Curry

Book Tour – “Drained” by G.K. Curry

Title: Title: Drained

Author: G.K. Curry
Genre: Supernatural Crime Thriller
Publication Date: May 15th, 2019

Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR

Blurb:
Six gruesome murders.
Six crime scenes with no evidence.
And a killer who’s more than your typical monster.
When detectives Shaun Hawthorne and Danny Viviani are called to the scene of a homicide, they realize it’s the work of a serial killer. Just like the others, she’s been stabbed in the neck and drained of brain fluid.
To solve the case, they’ll have to peer into the mind of a murderer who is anything but human. As Shaun and Danny dive deeper into the mystery, they discover that there’s a darker side to the world. A side full of magic and monsters.
And now they’ve become the prey.
Can Shaun and Danny survive long enough to catch the killer, or will they become the next victims?

 

You’ll die over this paranormal crime mystery because of the non-stop action and the jaw dropping twists.

 

GK Curry is an actuary for health care benefits with his ASA. When he isn’t writing or working full-time, you can find him spending time with his wife, four daughters, and four pets.  He enjoys playing and coaching sports and watching crime dramas to spark his imagination. Drained is his first novel.
Author Links:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/GKCurryauthor
 
 
 
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Book Tour – “Defending Sophie” by P.J. Fiala

Book Tour – “Defending Sophie” by P.J. Fiala

Title: Defending Sophie
Author: PJ Fiala
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Publication Date: May 14th, 2019
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR
Blurb:
Accused of murder and on the run, Sophie must turn to the one man she could never have.
Investigating her friend’s suspicious death, Sophie’s only source of information turns up dead – and she’s the prime suspect.  Forced into hiding, she turns to her brother’s best friend to help keep her alive, clear her name, and find the killer before she becomes the next victim.
Gaige has longed for Sophie for years, and he’d do anything to keep her safe, but details of the investigation aren’t adding up.  Mounting doubts have him questioning her story, even as his heart insists she’s telling the truth. The only thing he knows for sure is he’ll do anything to prove her innocence, but will it cost him his career?
Writing has been a desire my whole life.  Once I found the courage to write, life changed for me in the most profound way. Bringing stories to readers that I’d enjoy reading and creating characters that are flawed, but lovable is such a joy.
When not writing, I’m with my family doing something fun.  My husband, Gene, and I are bikers and enjoy riding to new locations, meeting new people and generally enjoying this fabulous country we live in.
I come from a family of veterans. My grandfather, father, brother, two sons, and one daughter-in-law are all veterans. Needless to say, I am proud to be an American and proud of the service my amazing family has given.
Author Links:
Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/2oPfOcY
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Book Tour – “Courageous” and “Ferocious” by Jennifer Ann

Book Tour – “Courageous” and “Ferocious” by Jennifer Ann

 
Title: Courageous & Ferocious
Author: Jennifer Ann
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Cover Designer: Najla Qamber
 
Courageous: 
As the daughter of a dangerous criminal wanted by virtually everyone on the South Side and despised by his own family, Andie Kennison never thought she’d know real freedom. Then her savior arrives in the form of a stranger with pale blue eyes, a beautiful body, and a hot temper.
Life tried to destroy Camden Stone more times than he could count, making him leery of human connections. Until her.
Together they’ll fight the demons of their past, putting their future on the line.
 
Ferocious: 
In Sasha Green’s first assignment as a detective, her job is to infiltrate the heavy metal band Blood Hands. Having grown up with her brother’s band, it’s the role she was born to play. But she wasn’t expecting to enjoy being part of a band more than her job protecting the city, or to empathize with the wrong side of the law.
As far as Trent Risotto is concerned, his band is no place for a woman, especially one as seemingly innocent as the blonde drummer who nails her audition. Although he’s unable to resist her sexy charm, his darkness would ruin someone like her.
She can’t afford to fall for the prime suspect.
He can’t afford any distractions that could get him killed.
Jennifer Ann is an award-winning and bestselling author of contemporary romance and romantic suspense with darkly complex plots. Much like her characters, she’s in love with the city of New York, trips on airplanes or the back of her husband’s Harley, and everything rock and roll.
Author Links:
Buy Links:
Excerpt from Courageous:
Heavy, slow footsteps beat against the wooden floorboards leading up the stairway. With my heart leaping from my chest, I scramble behind one of the couches, breath held as I attempt to make myself smaller. For all I know, my father’s goons were following me all this time. They love to toy with me whenever my father’s not around, sometimes even seeing what it takes to make me cry.
“The fuck you doin’ here?” a deep voice growls from around the corner. Next thing I know, my thigh’s kicked by a booted foot. Cigarette smoke pollutes the air. “Hey, moron, I’m talkin’ to you. Your skinny ass is trespassin’.”
Pulling my hood down, I drag my gaze up a pair of dirty jeans and an intimidatingly thick torso covered with a leather coat until I’m met with chillingly beautiful eyes. They’re the same pale blue as a cloudless sky on a warm day.
But there’s a disturbing darkness behind the man’s hard stare, sucking all the air from my lungs. Chin-length hair the color of straw slicked back, strong jaw set, he’s fiercely good looking and older than me—maybe even out of high school. Most importantly, he’s an enormous, scary dude. Worst of all, he reminds me of my father’s men. The type who wouldn’t bat an eye at beating a woman.
If he decides to hurt me, there won’t be a damn thing I can do to stop him.
His beautiful eyes widen at the same time a smirk pulls at his thick lips. He seems to either be surprised that I’m a girl, or amused I’m not running in fear. “You speak English, lil’ mouse?” he sniggers in a voice that’s so deep and rough it rumbles through my chest.
Heat spreads through my cheeks. My belly tingles. “The door was open.”
“By open, you mean boarded shut?” As he puffs on his cigarette, pale blue eyes drag across my body. I cower beneath my bag, feeling exposed under his threatening stare. I’m feeling all kinds of things, some I don’t know how to describe. He’s beautiful and terrifying at the same time, sending a wave of shivers down my back. “What’re you doin’ here, anyway?”
I hold his stare, refusing to be rattled. “I just need a place to camp out for a few nights.”
“You took this as a free-for-all shelter?” He lets out a cold, heartless laugh. “Sweetheart, that place is down the road.”
My stomach tightens when he says “sweetheart,” making it hard to speak. To him, I probably look like a little girl, but under his potent gaze, I feel like a grown woman. “I can give you money…if you’ll let me stay,” I wheeze out.
He snarls like a wolf. “Go home to your daddy, princess. Girls like you have no business in a place like this.”
Rage thickens through my throat. “Girls like me?” I spit out, rising to my feet. He towers over me like a skyscraper. And there’s so much danger in his gaze that part of me wants to run. But even after he blows a stream of smoke in my face, I refuse to back down. “You have no idea who I am, or what I’ve been through!”
“Doesn’t matter. You’re outta your element.”
He bends down to my level, stopping just before our noses touch. A cold chill of fear spikes my veins, making it hard to breathe in his masculine scent. Rather than being sweaty or gross like with boys my age, it’s as dark and mysterious as the man it belongs to.
More tingles invade my belly when I wonder what it would be like to be kissed by this big, angry man. I haven’t been kissed by anyone, but I imagine those wide, soft lips could wreck me in an instant. When they move again, I almost sigh.
“Go. The fuck. Home.”
Shaking my head, I hold my chin higher, determined not to let him win. Whatever this guy decides to do with me can’t be any worse than what my father will do once he discovers I’ve left. “I can’t go home.”
Tension between us breaks with the sound of more footsteps. A handful of seconds later, I’m ready to cry a thousand gallons of tears of relief when a teenage girl walks in, dark eyes widening on me.
“Andie?” she asks, lips wavering with an unsure smile. “Oh my god, what’re you doing here? I haven’t seen you in forever!”
It only takes a second to recognize the big, beautiful mocha eyes belonging to Sasha Green. We’ve been close since elementary school, having bonded during a recess when Lucas Reynolds yanked me to the ground by my hair. Sasha marched right up to him and threatened to have her big brother and his friends kick his ass. I didn’t know anything about her brother or his friends at the time, but I guessed they must’ve been scary, because Lucas looked ready to piss himself with the warning, and never bothered me again.
Pretty much no one bothered me after I became friends with Sasha. We ate lunch together every day, and hung out whenever we had a chance. I wasn’t allowed to have friends outside of school, and never knew much about her home life, but I get the feeling she wouldn’t understand why I’m running away. She always seemed close with her brother, and she was laid back the few times I saw her interact with his friends. I figured she had the kind of normal parents who read her bedtime stories when she was little, and tucked her in with a kiss.
The big scary guy turns to Sasha, upper lip curled. “You know this chick?”
“Yeah, she’s a friend…from way back.” Sasha’s eyes narrow on him as she sets a hand on her hip. The guy must not be too dangerous the way she’s throwing him attitude. “Why? What’d you say? I swear to god, Stone, if you were a dick to her—”
“Tell your little friend she can’t stay here.” Stone drops the cigarette on the floor and crushes it with a boot before his beautiful blues lock on me. “Stay the fuck outta this neighborhood.”
As he saunters back to the stairway, my heart flips several times in my chest. Why’d he have to be so mean? He acted like he hates my guts, and I’ve never even met him before.
What kind of name is “Stone” anyway? Maybe it has something to do with his cold, stony heart. I’d never met anyone so cranky and gorgeous at the same time. The second he’s out of sight, the darkness brought on by his surly mood vanishes and I’m finally able to breathe.
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Book Tour – “Chaos Reigns” by G.S.Scott

Book Tour – “Chaos Reigns” by G.S.Scott

Title: Chaos Reigns
Author: G. S. Scott
Genre: Epic Fantasy (with Romantic Elements & LGBTQ Characters)
Cover Designer: Colleen Nye
Editor: Genevieve Scholl
Publisher: True Tree Press
Publication Date: May 21st, 2019
Blurb:
For 500 years, the God of Chaos has ruled in a torturous reign of brutality. Now, desperate gods and goddesses are seeking an end to his dominion. To counter them, Chaos calls for the Cleansing: the sacrifice of all children under two.
Ellis escapes the Cleansing through intuition and prophetic dreams. Visions drag him north toward an ethereal tower, deep in The Lands of the Dead. His life is saved by Dirge, a swordsman with a haunted past who thinks Ellis was born to end the reign of Chaos. Ellis grows to head a troupe of traveling entertainers. His only true friend is Daylin, a young woman and former priest’s slave who talks with wolves. Always on the move, they stay steps ahead of the fire-wielding priest who killed Ellis’ parents.
To the north, villagers discover Betal at the forest’s edge. Sensing Betal’s immense power, a local paladin excludes Betal from the Cleansing and declares him The Hand of God. As Betal falls into a roll as an acolyte to Chaos, strange dreams of wolves haunt him. His only friend is a fellow acolyte, Mangin, a beguiling young woman who delights in twisting the minds of others. The pair set out to Citadel, where they will become full-fledged priests, if they can escape a murderous beast and assassins who stalk the path.
When the two groups meet, intrigue, love, and sex intertwine them. Can they trust one another when the old gods challenge Chaos using mortals as pawns? Even fools know to trust Chaos is to invite death.
 Buy Links:
 
G. S. Scott is the author of CLEANSED, and SORROW’S HEART, from the series THE CHRONICLES OF THE TRUE TREE.
Mr. Scott spent his youth, sitting in a basement playing tabletop role-playing games. It got his creative juices flowing. Characters of all types banged around in his head, demanding to be let loose into the world. And he obliged them.
G. S. Scott is active in local writing groups and is an avid gamer, with the Fallout series topping the list. He enjoys local theater with his playwright wife, Sarah. He knew she was the one when she quoted Monty Python on their third date.
G. S. Scott can be found at http://www.g-s-scott.com
Author Links:
Instagram: g.s.scott
Buy Links:
Heartless squatted on the edge of his golden throne, his eye color changing wildly. A snarl played on his lips as he reveled in the power flowing from the Lord of Chaos through the bejeweled, multihued crown, entangled within his long black hair. At the foot of his dais lay the bubbling pool that used to be his herald—the man had the poor luck to bring him the spy. Heartless didn’t dare kill his eyes and ears within the Council of Taneer so he took his rage out on the herald.
A voice whispered in the back of his head.
He glanced at the spot where the spy’s gateway closed when the man left, the lingering scent of burnt ozone still in the air. “What were you holding back?” he asked, his voice echoing in the vast, dust-choked chamber. The light from mangled, crystal chandeliers and rush torches, along with the sparse rays peaking in through boarded windows left the castle in perpetual dim, earning it the name, the Black Keep.
Heartless clenched his fists, the knuckles whitening. It didn’t matter what the spy withheld, the news he brought was bad enough. His face twisted. “Gabriel thinks he can take what is mine? The gall! I won their damned Game. Edis—Chaos himself—chose me, and I won. The world is mine. And now the Arbiter expects me to step down over some time limit? A time limit?” Heartless hurled his golden scepter across the room, the crystal top shattering on the rippled, uneven marble floor. Taking a deep breath, he chuckled. “A Rebirthing? Why would Gabriel do such a thing? Why be a mortal when he’s already a god?”

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Book Tour – “Irresistible” by Tara Vasser

Book Tour – “Irresistible” by Tara Vasser

Title: Irresistible
Author: Tara Vasser
Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance
Cover Designer: Dawn Til Dusk Designs
Models: Chase and Mandy Borst
Publisher: Winter Musings LLC
Publication Date: April 11, 2019
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR
Blurb: Buried as punishment for a crime he didn’t commit, Endre has nothing but time to plot revenge on his betrayer. Salvation arrives when an archaeology student unwittingly exhumes his coffin and provides him with the first blood he’s tasted in nearly a century.
Upon awakening from an attack by a creature she never imagined actually existed, Nora discovers she is now his hostage. Forced to accompany Endre from Italy to Paris on a quest for vengeance, she is thrust into his dark and forbidden world where she finds herself inexplicably drawn to the Vampire. Lust runs rampant throughout the course of their journey and Nora begins to question if the irresistible connection between them is more than mere biology.
 
Tara Vasser is a wicked writer who lives in the frozen north in Minnesota with her wonderful husband and two rambunctious little dudes. She is an engineer during the day, a crazy mom in the afternoon and a writer at night. She enjoys spending her time playing in the dirt when her gardens aren’t covered in snow and listening to a wide variety of music that inspires her writing – sometimes doing both at the same time.   

Author Links: 
Amazon: https://amzn.to/2Y51LiD
PROLOGUE
1923 – Italy
Endre sat beneath the shadow of a massive cork tree in his garden, reading the newspaper as he watched the first rays of sunshine peek over the hills to the east. It was a pity he could not give his full attention to the beautiful view, his mind burdened with the troubling headlines. Folding the paper with a deep sigh, he pushed the paper and his thoughts of Mussolini’s latest moves to overtake parliament to the side. Perhaps it was time to leave Italy and move on to greener pastures. There was an ominous scent in the wind, and it spoke of the death and destruction on the horizon.
Endre was no stranger to war and chaos, having been born a warrior. When conflicts arose in the world around him, his hands always itched to take up sword and shield. But of course, those days of ending wars with steel were over. Now, the weapons of choice were guns and bombs. There was no honor in that. No promises of glory or feasting in the halls of Valhalla when so little skill and preparation was involved.
Valhalla or no, the political climate of this region was no longer hospitable to his research. Secrecy was completely necessary, and the alliances Gregor had forged to provide Endre with supplies for his lab would not stand the threat this new breed of fascism posed. Glancing over at the horizon, he frowned. He had been out here long enough; it was time to retire for the day, and he would allow his dreams to conjure his next moves and put new plans into place when twilight fell. Endre picked up his paper and made his way toward the door when the noise of automobile tires crunching over the gravel drive and shouting stilled his movement.
“Back here! In the garden!” a voice hollered from the garden entrance.
A man dressed impeccably in a suit with a homburg gracing his head stood at the entrance of the sanctuary. Endre did not recall his name, he only knew the man as one of Lorenzo’s bodyguards. The man gestured wildly in Endre’s direction.
Several more of Lorenzo’s bodyguards filed in behind him, posturing menacingly.
Confused, Endre watched the men as they lined the perimeter of his garden, violating his last few moments before the sun crested over the hill. “What is this? Where is Lorenzo?” he scoffed, standing his ground when they surrounded him where he stood, preparing to fight if the need arose.
“I am here,” Lorenzo’s French-accented voice called leisurely from the garden entrance as he strolled forward and casually buttoned his suit jacket.
Sighing with relief, Endre relaxed at the sight of his friend.
Lorenzo sauntered into the garden lazily, stopping to inspect a blossom before meandering his way through his men to stand in front of Endre.
“And to what do I owe this honor?” Endre questioned suspiciously, watching Lorenzo carefully. It was much too close to dawn for them to be conducting business.
“Endre, you have been charged with murder,” Lorenzo recited in a bored voice, placing his hands in his pockets and rocking back on his heels.
Endre’s head jerked back as if he had been struck. Murder? He was being charged with murder? “And who is it exactly that I am supposed to have killed?” Endre demanded, outrage making his voice boom through the still morning air.
“Count La Rossa.” Lorenzo sighed sadly. “Why did you do it, Endre?”
“You cannot be serious.” Endre balked, sure this was some prank. “Gregor is dead?”
The men surrounding him took a step closer, as if of one mind.
“I did not kill Gregor,” Endre protested, though he found himself falling back on his training from another life and crouched into a fighting stance.
Several more men joined the mob, men from Gregor’s guard, flanking Endre now with more than a dozen men. At most, he could take out half of them before they would bring him down, leaving another half dozen to beat him mercilessly and likely kill him in the process—merely for resisting. Any defiance would be futile, but he would not go down without a fight, especially for a false charge.
Lorenzo shook his head sadly at Endre’s change in demeanor, as if his instincts of self-preservation condemned him of the crimes for which he was accused. Lorenzo raised his voice loud so all the men could hear him. “Endre, you are hereby charged with the murder of Count Gregor La Rossa. Your brothers here will serve as judge, jury, and executioners of your sentence. The traditional punishment for such a crime, as you are well aware, is burial. Your death by starvation will serve as justice by the old laws laid forth by The Council. Guards, seize him and prepare him for his punishment.” Then, turning back to Endre, he taunted, “I think we will bury you here in your beloved garden.”
Several of the guards pulled out pistols and made moves toward Endre.
Cowards, of course, they would not face him without firearms.
Endre lashed out, but he had only his fists. He managed to knock two of the guards to the ground before they had him pinned to the moldering leaves in the dirt.
Fists were no match for bullets.
Watching with one eye—the other caked in blood and dirt—three men began digging his grave beneath the large tree and another two hauled a plain coffin through the garden gates.
At the sight of the coffin, Endre redoubled his struggled to break free. “Lorenzo, this is nonsense. Gregor was my oldest friend and confidant. He was like a brother to me, just as you are. I would never harm him. What is the evidence against me? I demand a trial with The Council. It is my right,” he spoke around the dirt in his mouth.
Scowling down at him disapprovingly, Lorenzo approached slowly. He stooped and picked up Endre’s fallen fedora, brushing dirt from the fabric.
An entreating glance at Lorenzo earned Endre naught but a kick to the face. This man was no friend. Endre wondered if he had ever been. Blood from a gash above his eye poured down his face, but healed almost as quickly as it occurred, leaving dried blood caked to his eyelashes. Through crusted lashes, he watched as Lorenzo stood above him and removed his own hat, placing Endre’s atop his head instead.
Smiling, Lorenzo gave a nod of approval at Endre’s taste in men’s fashion and tossed his hat to one of the men standing guard, inciting a round of chuckles from his henchmen.
Fury boiled in Endre’s veins as his ‘friend’ betrayed him and made light of the unlawful punishment he dealt. How could Lorenzo believe Endre capable of such a crime? It was unlike Lorenzo to dole out consequence without following proper protocol.
Unless Lorenzo had something to hide. Something he worried The Council would unearth if the matter were brought to trial.
Realization sunk like a stone in Endre’s gut as he put the pieces together.
When the guards finished digging the grave, the men casually tossed the coffin into the pit at Lorenzo’s gesture. The dull thud sent a chill through Endre. He continued to struggle against his captors, but with three of them now detaining him, he received nothing but a pistol whip to the head and kicks to his ribs.
With a nod from Lorenzo, the guards hauled Endre to his feet and dragged him toward the yawning opening of the coffin awaiting him. At the foot of the open box, two of the guards held his arms while one bound his hands in front of him with thick rope. Endre let out a shout when one man grabbed his hair and held his head back so he gazed directly into the lightening sky. From the corner of his eye, Endre watched Lorenzo pull a wicked-looking dagger from a sheath at his hip. The blade glinted with the light of the rising sun, a shining omen of Endre’s imminent demise.
“Lorenzo, please,” Endre spoke to the man before him, the man he had considered a friend until this day, “I—”
Lorenzo only gave Endre a devious grin and prevented any more words from escaping his lips with a quick slash of his blade across Endre’s neck. Blood cascaded from his neck and he choked as it drained into his throat. Within seconds, the wound had already begun to heal itself, the blood flow stanched. Lorenzo’s blade dashed out again, performing the same motion across the nearly-healed laceration. Again, Endre choked and sputtered on his own warm blood and any words he wished to speak.
Light-headed from the blood loss, Endre fell to his knees. The guards holding him stepped back and left him with Lorenzo glowering down at him. Endre’s head lolled to the side and he was barely clinging to consciousness. All it took was a well-placed kick from Lorenzo and he fell backward into his new prison.
Several of the guards made a move to place the lid on the coffin, but Lorenzo stayed their movement with a wave of his hand. “Leave us. I want to speak to this murderous traitor alone before we leave him to the worms,” Lorenzo ordered, his eyes never leaving Endre’s fading ones.
Several murmurs went through the small crowd. That was not the way. Tradition and adherence to the old laws stated the sentence must be carried out before an amassing of the people, so all could witness what fate befell a murderer of his own kind.
“Leave us!” Lorenzo roared, turning to stare down each man in turn.
The guards filed from the garden, leaving Endre with Lorenzo and his bloody blade.
Lorenzo couched so his face was close to Endre’s.
Endre only wished enough blood had still flowed in his veins so he could reach out and relieve Lorenzo of the triumphant smile gracing his lips.
“Endre,” Lorenzo whispered with a sigh, “I warned you not to approach Gregor to back your research, and yet you did. Not only that, expressing wishes to distribute your cure at no cost?” Lorenzo tsked and shook his head. “He would have done it, too. Threatened to expose me for lack of loyalty to our people. Unfortunately, he miscalculated. The man was too much of a philanthropist for his own good. He never did understand the power his money held. Such a waste. And here we are. Someone has to take the fall for Gregor’s death and justice must be served. It might as well be you. His blood is on your hands as much as mine, all because you could not follow simple directions. We could have profited from this together, you and I. I would kill you now if it would not upset the delicate sensibilities of our people. But alas, I cannot. Perhaps in a century or two, I will come check on you and finish the task when everyone has forgotten your existence.”
Endre glared up at Lorenzo, the lack of blood preventing his wounds from healing and allowing him to foil his new enemy’s plans.
“But do not worry,” Lorenzo continued, brushing dirt from his trousers. “I will not let your research go to waste. I still have plans for the work you have done, but perhaps an adjustment here and there to suit my own needs.”
Endre only had the faintest inkling of what kind of dastardly plans Lorenzo was concocting, but the malicious smile gracing his lips was indication enough that it would not be good.
Rising to his feet, Lorenzo glanced down impassively at Endre once more. “You should have listened to me, old friend. Now, you will have plenty of time to think on your cure and the error of your ways while you rot in your grave,” Lorenzo spat out with a maniacal laugh. Bending over, he slashed out with his blade one last time.
Endre felt the slightest trickle of blood ooze from the cut, so little of the liquid remained in his body.
At a shouted order from Lorenzo, the guards all marched back into the garden.
Endre attempted to alert them to Lorenzo’s treachery, but the only sound from his mangled throat was a pained moan. The lid of the coffin was lowered, blocking out the dazzling sunshine of the new morning, and hammers pounded out the finality of his death sentence. The last glimpse Endre had of Lorenzo was a mocking tip of the hat, his hat.
This box would not hold Endre forever, and when he rose, he intended to rain down retribution, and when he came for Lorenzo, it would be all-out war. The last thing he could hear between his own thoughts of revenge and each shovelful of dirt falling on the wooden box was Lorenzo whistling happily with the belief he had gotten away with his crimes.
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Author Spotlight – Janet Elizabeth Lynn & Will Zeilinger and “Game Town”

Author Spotlight – Janet Elizabeth Lynn & Will Zeilinger and “Game Town”

I’d like to welcome a husband and wife author team back to the blog – say hello to Janet Elizabeth Lynn and Will Zeilinger!

 

Published authors Will Zeilinger and Janet Elizabeth Lynn write individually until they got together and created the Skylar Drake Mystery Series. These hard-boiled tales are based in old Hollywood of 1956-57.  Janet has published seven mystery novels and Will has three plus a couple of short stories. Their world travels have sparked several ideas for murder and crime stories. This creative couple is married and live in Southern California.

The next Skylar Drake Mystery, GAME TOWN,  the fifth and final book in the series, will be available April 15, 2019 and yes…we are still married!

Follow them at Janet’s website!

Or at Will’s website!

 

 

 

Their new novel is called GAME TOWN, and it will be released next Monday!

 

Skylar Drake and his partner are hired as bodyguards for two young starlets. They deliver the actresses home after the Oscar Awards ceremony, but stumble onto the murder of Silver Brovor-Smith, the mother of one of their charges, actress Holly Becker.  Drake wonders why the FBI is on the scene when it looks like a simple case of murder.

Drake is now embroiled in the murder investigation of Silver Brovor-Smith. Suspicion shifts between her husband Peter Smith, and Silver’s three older brothers.

At every turn Drake and Dolan are lied to or misled. Kidnapping and mysterious deaths follow them as they weave their way through the maze of Hollywood’s movie and TV backroom deals. The FBI shows up to make sure Drake and Dolan keep the high-profile people involved from becoming front page news.

Drake meets and falls in love with Miss Anne the perfect woman to help him move on with his life. But is she a suspect? Then there is Holly’s friend, the sexy, young starlet Theresa Lee who has her own plans for him.

The letters P-E-G-O seem to appear everywhere, and Drake wonders if they have anything to do with Silver’s murder or her husband’s kidnapping

Follow the detective to Hollywood parties where the forbidden is accepted and the games played are for keeps.

 

 

 

Here’s a guest post from Janet…

1950s Scandal

The Melchior Robbery

by

Janet Elizabeth Lynn

My husband, Will Zeilinger and I co-write the Skylar Drake Murder Mysteries, a hardboiled Detective series that takes the reader to 1950s Los Angeles and other areas of the west. Our new book, GAME TOWN, is set in Hollywood and exposes a scandal that rocks the Toy Companies in Los Angeles.

While doing in-depth research into 1950s Hollywood, we came across news that shocked and amazed us.  You can’t make this stuff up!

Lauritz Melchior was well known as a tenor, with in incredibly high range, and actor. On June 8, 1957 he was robbed in his Mulholland Drive home by four masked bandits.  They forced their way into the home, tied up the singer, his wife, Maria and two of his household employees. They escaped with an estimated. $250,000 in cash, jewels and furs. Melchior ran after them when they were leaving in their car, but was too late.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The loot included crown jewels once belonging to Queen Anastasia, mother of King Frederick IX of Denmark. The Melchoirs had been visited earlier in the evening by several friends before the invasion. The police reported that the four men rang the door bell, a maid answered. They forced the maid to ring the doorbell again and this time Melchoir came to the door.

 

 

 

 

 

Wayne Burke, one of the gunmen was caught within the next few months. After several years the rest were apprehended. Alfred Pope was tried, convicted and sentenced to 6 months in prison, Richard Mc Fall sentenced to 5 year and Louis Spivak was sentenced for 5 years to life with a minimum term of 7 years. All charges against Burke were dropped because he cooperated with authorities and aided in the return of the property.

The $88,000 worth of furs and jewels were recovered.

 

 

 

 

Last, but not least, here’s an excerpt from their new book!

Two o’clock in the morning. I’d just left the Emmy Awards ceremony at the NBC Television Studio in Burbank. All of Hollywood and its finest had shown up tonight to honor the best of television for 1956. The winners and losers were either at a party celebrating or hiding somewhere licking their wounds. I’d just left the event driving south on Cahuenga toward Hancock Park. My partner, Casey Dolan was in the passenger seat. It was pouring rain when we left Burbank. It seemed to be lessening as we headed away from the valley.

We’d been hired by Epic Studios to escort a couple of their up and coming starlets to and from the event. In truth, we were their bodyguards. The motion picture and TV studios weren’t taking chances with their human investments.

The two young ladies in the back seat were passed out cold. I suspected they’d had a little too much Champagne before and during the ceremony.

I drove through the Wilshire Boulevard entry gate and onto Fremont Place, one of the most exclusive and expensive neighborhoods in Los Angeles. Ahead we spotted a lot of activity on the street. Dolan sat up and stared at the mess ahead, “What the Hell?”

Several police cruisers and what looked like government cars were lined up in front of a house with their spotlights trained on it. As we got closer, I saw the address. 859 in brass letter, wattached to the beam above the front door – the address where I was to deliver the girls.

Dolan rolled down his window to get a better look. He pulled his head back inside and said, “You sure this is the right house?”

I parked at the opposite corner. Dolan said, “I’ll stay here and keep watch on the girls.”

I sprinted up the wet sidewalk and ducked under the yellow police tape. A uniformed cop approached me and held up his hand like a traffic cop. “Sorry, sir. This is a police investigation. You’ll have to step back.”

I showed him my PI license and explained that I was a bodyguard for the two young ladies in my car and that I was to deliver them to this address.

He took a look at my credentials and shook his head, “Sorry sir…”

I heard a familiar voice.

“Drake, over here!” I almost didn’t recognize FBI special agent Olivia Jahns. She looked like she’d just stepped off the red carpet, poured into a slinky black evening gown. She held up one side of her long gown and made her way over to me.

“That’s all right officer.” She said, “I’ll take it from here.” He turned away while I followed Jahns into the mansion.

“Olivia…er, Agent Jahns. What’s this all about?”

She glanced back at me and said, “You’ll see. Just follow me.”

I stopped. “I meant the dress, the hair and…”

She too stopped and took a breath. “Come on Drake. You’re wearing a tuxedo. I can have fun too.” She continued to the front door. “Right now, we have a problem.”

Inside, the body of a woman in a pure white coat with a white fur collar was sprawled on the hardwood floor at the foot of a marble staircase. Her light blonde hair and fur coat were soaked with blood. The handle of a knife protruded from her waist. I bent down for a closer look. The blood in her hair was plastered to her face. Her mouth and hands were clenched. I detected a strong odor by the body. It wasn’t cherry, but it was sweet.

“Who is…?”

“The victim’s name is Silver Brovor-Smith.” Jahns interrupted me as most FBI agents do. “She’s the mother of Holly Becker, one of the young ladies in your charge.”

Brovor?…Brovor. Why did that name sound familiar? It dawned on me, “The Toy company Brovor?” I could visualize the logo – a big red circle with black and white letters.

“Yep.” Jahns nodded. “You got it.”

My mind raced. I remembered a lawsuit from years ago between family members after their father passed away. The papers had a field day with the scandal. I stood and asked Jahns, “You sure about Holly’s lineage?”

“Yup, no doubt, Brovor. Since you’re in charge of her, I’ll leave it up to you to break the news to the soon-to-be grieving daughter.”

We looked out the front door. The press had already gathered on the front lawn. Radio and Television remote trucks had set up their lights and equipment while the newspaper photographer’s flashbulbs blinded us. The reporters didn’t help the chaos as the street in front of the house was already jammed with the Coroner’s truck, loads of police cars and an ambulance. It seemed dark on the street. I looked up and saw that the street light was out. Strange that would happen on Fremont Place.

Jahns looked at me. “Why are you still here Drake?”

I headed for the door. It was late, and my brain had stopped working hours ago.

The two starlets came running past me, “No!” Holly yelled when she saw her mother’s body on the floor.

Theresa, the other young lady, shouted, “Oh my God. Oh my God!” She struggled to join her friend Holly, but Dolan had his hands full, holding her back from the scene.

“What are you doing here?” I yelled over the two young women’s screams. “You were supposed to keep them in the car.”

“Hey!” Dolan said, “There are two of them and only one of me.”

I took Holly by the shoulders and turned her away from the bloody scene. I hoped to say something comforting to her when she looked toward the stairway.

“What did you do to her?” Holly shouted at an older man wearing a white tuxedo coming down the stairs. Holly broke away from me and ran toward him. She began kicking and punching him, screaming, “What did you do to her!”

Several officers pulled her away, but she continued kicking and flailing, “You killed her!”

 

 

 

 

 

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Book Tour – “The Purple Castle” by Quinn Slater

Book Tour – “The Purple Castle” by Quinn Slater

 
Title: The Purple Castle
Author: Quinn Slater
Genre: Erotic Fantasy/Fairy Tale Fantasy
Cover Designer: Silla Webb/Masque of the Red Pen
Publication Date: April 5th, 2019
Blurb:
The Purple Castle: A Twisted Retelling of Snow White
Escaping the tumultuous life with her abusive husband, Zareena vanishes into the dark of night where she finds an enchanted land of mystical and magical creatures in the woods behind her home.But as magical as the land seems, a darkness lies in wait—a witch who desires to sit on the same throne Zareena has been destined to occupy. In her quest to the throne and to wash away the curse the witch has cast upon both Legendary and its king, Zareena must also face her own demons of desire and conquest. The question for Zareena quickly becomes one of strength. Can she accept her passionate awakening while also freeing Legendary from its 1,000-year curse?
Quinn Slater explores the world of yearning and fantasy in a retelling of a classical fairy tale that explores one woman’s search for herself.
 
Quinn Slater lives in a large town in Kentucky where many of his stories take place. His writing career began in mainstream fiction where he has published five novels. But then he found a delicious appetite for writing erotic fiction. As one college professor put it, “You need to go write the dirty stuff.” And that’s exactly what he did.
Quinn’s work features strong male and female protagonists and antagonist, all of who have just the right amount of sexy with a healthy dose of naughtiness. He was once asked why he turned to erotica. The answer was simple. He wanted to put characters in compromising situations and see how their carnal appetites helped them find a way to a pleasurable ending.
Author Links:
 
“The dryads are here to serve you on your quest,” Helena said. The nymph flapped her wings excitedly.
Zareena looked up from her foot. “My quest?”
Helena waved her hand toward the path the group followed, and the trees gracefully bent away from the path, revealing magnificent mountains far to the north, and upon the most distant mountain sat a large purple castle. “It is the place you seek. We will help to find what you seek.”
Zareena shook her head. “I don’t understand. All that I seek is happiness. To be loved and cherished.”
The dryads continued moving Zareena’s feet forward, stopping in an open area heavily surrounded by trees. A small building sat in the middle, a gentle fire blazing inside, the silhouette of flames licking the walls. The cottage looked like a place she could live forever.
“He that you seek lives in the purple castle.”
“He?” Zareena questioned. She again scanned the small village, mesmerized by the fantastical plants and tiny creatures.
“Arcturus, ruler of all that you see. He is our king. The lover of us all. And in return, we love him.” Helena motioned at a stump near the small building. “Please have a seat, and we will explain.”
Zareena crossed the open area and took a seat, facing Helena. Although she crossed her legs, she felt no shame for her nakedness. Several of the female dryads fluttered upward, surrounding her head. Zareena looked to the left and then the right. “What are they doing?”
“Preparing you,” Helena replied softly.
The female dryads fluttered around her hair, gently grabbing the long strands.
Zareena watched from the corners of her eyes as the small creatures began to meticulously braid her brunette lox. “Preparing me for what?”
Helena pointed toward the purple castle again. “For our king, of course. He will love you better than anyone. He will treat you as he has treated us.”
“I…” Zareena began but then held her words. A castle? A king? She looked toward the castle again and this time smiled. When she turned to Helena, she saw her own face in a mirror, Helena fluttering behind the mirror, struggling to hold it in the air. She took the mirror and turned her head, marveling at the braids the dryads had fixed into a bun. For the first time in years she felt pretty. No, she felt beautiful. She lowered the mirror, studying her neck, and then breasts, stomach, the patch of hair between her legs, her milky-white thighs and then the rest of her legs. Her body had changed since entering the woods. With the purple castle looking down on her from afar, she felt as if she’d walked into her own fairy tale.
Zareena stood and walked around the dryads’ home, admiring the flowers that seemed to turn and watch her as she passed by. The ground beneath her feet seemed to breathe life into her body. Everything about the dryads exuded an unstoppable energy. 
Zareena stopped. Her eyes grew wide. All around her, the male dryads were mounting a female dryad. Small bodies gyrated and glowed. Hips thrusted and wings fluttered.
She moved to her knees and studied two dryads in the throes of love making. The male dryad had the female on her stomach, the female pushing her small ass back toward the male’s driving hips. The male’s body glowed brightly, and the female’s wings fluttered. Zareena glanced to the right, where a female Dryad was perched atop a male, her wings helping her control the male beneath her.
Zareena sat on the ground and crossed her legs before scooting closer to the first couple she had been admiring. Helena floated closer and took a seat on Zareena’s bare shoulder.
“Watch his body,” Helena whispered.
With her eyes still trained on the dryads, Zareena nodded and leaned closer. “He’s becoming transparent. What’s happening to him?”
“Watch closer,” Helena replied. “Watch the female.”
The dryads’ bodies were not much different than those of humans. Zareena watched, amazed, as the female’s wings stretched back and engulfed the male behind her. Though the wings became transparent, much like the male dryad, Zareena could still see the milky liquid surging from the male’s body, emptying into the female. And as the fluorescent cream filled the dryad, she began to sing. In fact, every female around Zareena sang an angelic song as their male counterparts released into them.
“But what about you?” Zareena asked.
Helena smiled and fluttered into the air. “Hold out your hand.”
Zareena did as the small nymph requested. Her heart beat faster and her breathing hastened.
Helena landed softly onto Zareena’s hand and let her wings relax away from her sides. She pursed her lips and sang as beautiful as anything nature had ever created.
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Book Tour – “Kade” by Apryl Baker

Book Tour – “Kade” by Apryl Baker

Title: Kade
Author: Apryl Baker
Genre: Security Romance
Publisher: Crave Publishing
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR
Blurb:
Gut-wrenching, soul-searing grief has haunted Angel Kincaid for seven years, since she suffered a miscarriage. Just when she starts to think she’s come to terms with it, everything she thought she knew is cast into doubt when she comes face to face with a little boy, and  every instinct tells her the child belongs to her—that he is her son.
Kade can’t shake his wife’s reaction to the boy, and is determined to uncover the truth. He’d been an undercover cop investigating Los Muertos, a bloodthirsty Miami cartel, when Angel lost their child, but he knows one thing…
A mother knows her child.
When they uncover the horrifying truth, the race is on to save the son they never knew from a fate worse than death—and they have to face Los Muertos to do it.
With the help of the men of Kincaid Security & Investigations, a deadly game of cat and mouse begins to prevent the cartel from turning an innocent child into a soulless killer.
But will Kade reach him in time?
 
Buy Now on Amazon!
Kade | Viktor | Mason
 
So who am I?
Well, I’m the crazy girl with an imagination that never shuts up. I LOVE scary movies. My friends laugh at me when I scare myself watching them and tell me to stop watching them, but who doesn’t love to get scared? I grew up in a small town nestled in the southern mountains of West Virginia where I spent days roaming around in the woods, climbing trees, and causing general mayhem. Nights I would stay up reading Nancy Drew by flashlight under the covers until my parents yelled at me to go to sleep.
Now, I live in a small town in West Virginia where I entertain my niece and nephew and watch the cats get teased by the birds and laugh myself silly when they swoop down and then dive back up just out of reach. The cats start yelling something fierce…lol.
I love books, I love writing books, and I love entertaining people with my silly stories.
Author Links:
Buy Now on Amazon!
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