Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Reviewing the Reviewer

It’s always been my policy that the only correct response to give any reviewer of my books is a polite thank you, whether the review is good or bad. I still maintain that’s the only acceptable response to a review of my books. HOWEVER, and this is where I am speaking from today, as a reader, I have some very real issues with many of the reviews I’m reading on blog sites, Amazon sites, and Goodreads… which once WAS good-reads, and is now another corner stop for trashing authors with impunity.

My complaint or in some cases my bitch with amateur reviews is a complex yet simple thing. Firstly, let’s address those pesky snarks about grammar and typos. Well yes, everybody makes typing mistakes, and sometimes the proofreaders for publishing houses DO miss the occasional typo. This is a helluva lot different than self-published books, which sometimes have many uncorrected and obvious spelling errors because the author didn’t employ a proofreader. What I’ve noticed and this is what annoys the crap out of me honestly, is the vast number of reviewers who think it’s their job not to review and assess the story they’ve read, but the editorial decisions made about it. AND while they’re complaining about bad grammar and spelling errors, they reveal their own lack of skill in constructing a grammatically correct and properly spelled sentence. So, before you continue to demerit stars in your rating for what you consider poor grammar, look at your own. It’s difficult to take seriously a review in which the reviewer can’t use a contraction, doesn’t understand the different between your and you’re, or they’re and there/their. Ask any author how annoying that shit is?

Then there’s the reviewer who down-rates your book because it’s not what she/he expected. I’ve seen opening remarks that are laughable–I picked up this book expecting it to be ______________ (fill in the genre) and I was so disappointed to discover it was ________________(fill in the blank). Then the next comment is, so I’m giving it X-stars because it wasn’t what I wanted. And this is the author’s fault why? YOU didn’t read the blurb, or the back cover, so the author is at fault for your disappointment? I even had one reviewer rewrite my blurb to what she thought it should have been, and trust me, it made very little sense given what the book was about.

Just recently one of my books that has consistently been given 5 stars was reviewed by a blogger who was totally contradictory in her remarks–it should have been 50 pages longer at one point, and two sentences later it should have been cut several dozen pages, or at least cut out the number of sex scenes. Let me point out now that this title is an Ellora’s Cave Quickie™ title. Soooo…. What part of Quickie needs explaining? By definition a “quickie” is a highly erotic, explosive encounter that happens quickly–hence the name. Ellora’s Cave has defined the line, and sex is expected to happen fast and intense. IF you don’t want to read content that is highly sexual, why have you chosen a Quickie to review? You are already predisposed to dislike the book, no matter how it’s setup or executed by the author. How fair are you going to be to this author and his/her book? If erotic content offends you in any way, choose books more suited to your taste if you expect to be taken seriously by readers, and authors.

How many authors have been subjected to the endless rant review? Where one point in a novel length story touches a nerve and it becomes all the “reviewer” (yes we are now using quotes for this one), sees and talks about–nothing else exists once you hit this nerve and it makes the reviewer crazy because of their highly personal response to it. A professional reviewer would decline to review, but in some bloggers this is a call to battle and they begin… reams and reams of emotionally charged verbal carnage that doesn’t even make sense, never mind read in a coherent, grammatically correct fashion. Then they solicit their friends to jump in and add their venom to the mix. How seriously is this shit supposed to be taken? Really? I’ve seen it, and it stuns me.

Reviews are supposed to be balanced and thoughtful observations that help potential readers choose books that will suit their tastes and appeal to them. How can ranting insanity help anyone decide more than the reviewer has clearly gone batshit crazy? Goodreads was once a good place to get balanced reviews, now it’s Amazon’s little sister in the poison war… Get your nose out of joint and you can login and start rating an author’s works with one star, without ever reading a word–to pay them back for some real or imagined slight. How valid is that? It has nothing to do with books, and everything to do with petty and malicious bitch trolling.

At the end of the day, the fact remains, over half the people reviewing books have no clue how to do it properly and with any kind of constructive observation to help readers choose whether or not to read the book in question. Many use their reviews as a way to be mean, self-important, and just plain shit-ignorant. If you want balanced and thoughtful reviews to help you decide on a new author or title, your best bet is still to visit wonderful and respected sites like these:

That’s only a few I use and trust, there are many other well-respected sites, so take the time to find them. And all you amateur reviewers, take a moment and think before you put your poison pen to the page… if you can’t be fair, maybe you need to ask yourself why you’re going to trash someone you don’t even know. And while you’re thinking on that, remember if you’re going to crap all over someone for incorrect grammar and spelling, make damn sure you check your own.

Now that I’ve made myself really popular, the floor is open for comments… fire away, but remember–spelling and good grammar counts!! *lol*

Peace and love to all…

Friday, July 26, 2013

Publishing and ego

It’s been another of those weeks that makes me wonder about the value and fate of those of us who work in the publishing world. After years of working in this industry, I’ve discovered I don’t like the new world very much at all for many reasons. Lack of talent is only part of it–the lack of decency, integrity, and any respect for others is a HUGE factor in what’s essentially making this entire creative art a pile of shit and a veritable cesspool.

Over the past couple of years in particular I’ve watched trends. There are more publishers cropping up than weeds in a garden because opportunists see a way to make some easy money for little investment. There are literally millions of people who want to publish a book, and believe they have the talent to be the next superstar of the literary world. If you can’t find a publisher who agrees with you–the giant machine called Amazon offers you an alternative, SELF-PUBLISH! Once the bane and joke of the “real” world of publishing, this too has become the vanity way to make a quick buck and call yourself a published author.

I think what annoys me the most is not that people everywhere are publishing their own books, but that the quality of those books is in MOST cases so poor. For those who employ editors, decent cover artists, and genuinely care about their work–I applaud your determination and your efforts. But how many of the new breed simply write it, slap a stock image on it, and place it into Amazon’s marketing machine? TOO MANY!

A lot of serious and seasoned authors are revealing common complaints when they confer. One of them being the arrogance that dominates the world of Indie publishing. Facebook is filled with groups of these authors who proudly proclaim that they will never subject themselves to editors who want nothing more than to undermine the integrity of their prose and art. Really? I have to admit, statements like that make me gape in stupefied wonder. There are a lot of words that will spring to mind when other authors read declarations like that–I don’t think “professional” will be among them. Lesson #1 for ANY author to learn–there are no perfect books. Before or after publication.

I’ve talked to several industry insiders, and they all say the same thing, the trend is shifting and there is a slow but inexorable movement back toward quality of writing. This is very good news for writers who care about the work they’re producing more than they do twisting writhing bodies into impossible situations. Erotic romance is a booming business and that’s unlikely to change, but what does need to change is the quality of those works. and others that are being fed into the mainstream of publishing. It speaks badly when reviewers actually complain about good grammar and proper word usage, and it’s happening because of the glut of utter shit that is all over the market at the moment.

Writers have two choices facing them as they wait for the industry to slow its frenetic rush to publish the next Fifty Shades of Grey phenomena. It’ll happen, but is very likely years away. So, in the meantime, everyone who’s rediscovered, or discovered reading because of the media frenzy around one set of books–these readers will need to find solid books to keep them reading now. Just my personal opinion, but I’d like to think the coming years will produce a far superior product than what’s dominating the market now, in both large houses and small. So, writers can continue to write down to their readers, and titillate them with stories that ten years ago would have been strictly classed as pornography, OR they can start to focus on writing stories that have readers thinking and feeling on all levels. There’s a lot to be said for romance that is sensual and actually romantic.

We, as artists/writers can either learn to do our jobs better all the time by working and growing, or we can fall back on the arrogance and posturing that is rapidly becoming the trademark of mid-level authors. Don’t kid yourself, it’s very true. The new common is a two-fold problem: never before published authors who think they can start at the top of the business because they’re too good to work their way up. Mid-level, moderately successful authors who somehow think it’s not career suicide to attack and malign other writers and slander their publishers when things don’t go their way. In a different business, these people would be in the gutter by end of day for some of the shit that is routinely pulled in the publishing world at this time. All in all, I know what I am, a nobody who works hard, and tries not to compromise my personal principles. That may mean I’m never a success, but at least I’ve produced what I hope are entertaining stories, and I didn’t step all over other people to make it happen.

Success is defined in different ways for different people, but arrogance and ego are ugly in any profession when they’re all you really have to offer.

Monday, July 22, 2013

The Vigilante Tour: great book, cool giveaway!

The Vigilante
by Jacqui Morrison



It isn’t safe for men who work in the porn business in the city of Toronto. 

When porn producer Sal Turbit is found dead in his apartment, no one seems to care. No one, that is, except Detective Lynette Wilton. Lynette has been a homicide detective for only three months, and has yet to earn her stripes. 

Murder is murder no matter who the victim is—and Lynette is out to catch a killer.  

Could the killer be Wanda Chambers, a mentally ill woman who hates the “scumbags” who prey on the vulnerable? Wanda’s beloved sister, Cathy, was one such woman. Cathy became a porn actress and then took her own life when her sleazy manager/boyfriend, Gil Lee, wouldn’t let her go.

Lynette’s sergeant doesn’t think it’s possible. Wanda has a debilitating illness. But Lynette believes that Wanda’s hatred and harsh childhood make her a prime suspect, and she proves it by catching Wanda in the act of attempting to shoot Lee.

Renowned defense lawyer Maxine Swayman takes on Wanda’s case; Maxine has a different view of the accused. She wants to help Wanda get the help that she needs, and it’s not going to happen in a prison cell. 

As the trial proceeds, will Maxine prevail and save Wanda, or will Lynette be able to tie Wanda to Turbit’s murder as well?  

"Morrison knows how to create suspense! She brings readers on a roller-coaster ride that leaves you breathless from start to finish!" —Trey Anthony, star and producer “Da Kink in Da Hair”



Chapter 1

“Hey,” Sal said, “come on in. You’re right on time. Good to meet ya.” He left the visitor in the living room of his shabby apartment in a grungy, low-rent building, and slipped into the kitchen. The metallic pop of a beer bottle opening echoed in the other room. Then another.

Six empty beer bottles, a heaping ashtray, and assorted marijuana paraphernalia were already strewn across his table. The grandfather clock struck four times. Sal stumbled back into the room. “I got you a beer.”

Glassy-eyed, Sal said, “I’ve got lots of great products for you to move today.” He showed the visitor the cover of a DVD. “This one is new. It’ll sell out. She’s a real sweet thing. Told me she was eighteen ’n had the ID to prove it. Likely just some little tramp from nowhere-ville. Came to the big, bad city for excitement––”

The metal felt cool as the visitor pulled out a gun.

“What the hell?” Sal screamed, just before the bullet penetrated his skull.

He fell onto the sofa, blood oozing out the back of his head. His face was contorted, almost angry looking. Certainly surprised.

The spent cartridge from the handgun ricocheted against a metal garbage can––reminiscent of the pop of a beer cap––and then landed on the carpet.

The murderer studied the victim’s splayed body, feeling a sense of elation and satisfaction. Out came a Swiss Army knife, and the killer wordlessly hacked off a section of Sal’s hair, stuffed it into a small plastic bag, and then threw it into a knapsack. The killer then picked up the half-spilled beer that Sal had been handing over when the shot was fired. Perfect. Grinning, the murderer chugged the beer, retrieved the spent cartridge, and smugly looked at Sal Turbit’s still body, now surrounded by pooling blood.

Still wearing leather gloves, the murderer put the beer bottle and hot metal bullet charge into a knapsack and fled, smiling, into the dense night.

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

I am Jacqui Morrison. I started writing poems and short stories as a child. I also enjoyed public speaking in elementary school and at University. In High School, a great teacher, Lenore Hawley, inspired me and in 1995 I pursued my life-long passion for writing.

 My career is a complicated web and includes: owning an ice cream parlour and fine food shop, teaching life-skills management to adults, teaching computer applications, social service work and marketing.

From 1994 to 2003, I assisted survivors of domestic violence in both criminal and family court as a support worker. I’ve always had a strong interest in law and justice.

I love to write and I am happiest writing or encouraging others to fulfill their writing dreams. I facilitate writing seminars for Canadore College and various agencies. 

I live in northern Ontario, Canada with my daughter Alison, my husband Wayne, and a three-legged dog named Willow. Our daughter has convinced us to adopt four cats so Felix, Sasha, Nikke and Angel round out our family. Angel, at four-months-of-age was abandoned by its owner and we rescued her in -15 degree weather.

Alison has a future in politics, animal rescue work or sales … because I’m not really a cat person and she’s persuaded me to adopt four.

My parents are the late Drs John and Irene Morrison. Mom was a family physician and a competitive swimmer. My father worked for the Provincial Parole Board. Dad enjoyed to write fictional stories in his spare time. He was my mentor, my editor and my hero. I have one sister named Trish. She is a competitive swimming coach. Trish resides in southern Ontario with her husband, four children, two dogs and a cat.

In our spare time we like to cruise Georgian Bay on our boat or spend quality family time.

Jacqui will be awarding Loose Tea and Chipnuts to two randomly drawn commenters during this tour and the Virtual Reviews Tour combined.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Perspectives, and a Giveaway for you!

I’ve done a lot of blogs over the past year that were me speaking out about various things. For the most part, it seems I was speaking for many people who don’t have a voice, because the responses were amazing. I’ve had a sort of epiphany in recent weeks, and while I in no way regret the blogs, I do regret that they were often prompted by anger. Anger is such a negative thing, though in truth it can sometimes be used in positive ways. My attitude these days is more along the lines of tending to my business and my personal journey in this world of ours. We are ALL tied to each other in fundamental ways, but those who make it their life’s work to interfere and judge are not the people most of us want to be or associate with on a daily basis.

Social networking has created a new kind of predator, and a new kind of “friend” for a lot of people. I think as a whole, people still want to trust, and therefore they accept strangers at their word when they “meet” online and forge friendships. I’ve fallen prey to a predator, and I’ve learned that people I considered loving and loyal friends are as reliable and steady as the weather. All that love can vanish quickly the instant you disagree about something, and that’s a shock to people who really DO put their hearts out there.

Occasionally, you really are blessed and you meet people who become an active and REAL part of your life, despite being on different continents. I have friends I’ve never met all over this world, friendships that are now years told. Hell, truth be told, I still write to the lady who was my first pen pal, 40 years and counting Karen!! So, yes, I believe in the friendships we can and do forge in cyberspace. BUT, and this is huge for me, I will no longer be the “target of choice” for people who want to be my friend for as long as it takes to get to publishers, other authors, and anyone else I work with or know professionally. This is called USING, not friendship, and it’s happened quite often over the past couple of years.

A few months ago, a truly remarkable man spoke to me. He is not only absolutely beautiful on the outside, his spirit and energy is even more stunning. Through him, I discovered a few things about myself and my attitudes, and they’ve changed, radically, because of this man’s light. He reaffirmed many things I’ve always believed and cherished, but somehow lost in the battles I’ve been waging for much too long. That has meant a lot of changes that are more visible to me than anyone else.

We may share the road, but each of us is on our own unique and personal journey. Forgetting this basic truth can lead to a lot of negative and tragic emotional twisting and turning. The older I get the more I realize I know very little. However, I do know that I won’t waste any further energy on paranoia and pettiness, not if I am able to control my responses to those efforts to provoke. I am focused now on what I need to do, for myself, and in time for the people who care about me as I do them. I’ve been talked about, lied about, and judged by people I’ve never even spoken to in many cases. Where those things once ate away at my happiness and leeched away my hope, they mean nothing now. I’ve subscribed to the adage that what other people say and think about me is not my business, it’s theirs. My job is to keep my focus on what is needed to achieve my success, and do it–without hurting others, or using them.

When online, exercise caution when you extend your trust to people you really don’t know. You may be saving yourself a lot of heartbreak. Most of all, reach inside you and find your personal beauty of spirit, then let it shine and light your world as you touch those around you. All things for a reason, even if the way gets cloudy. I think if you can trust that, anything is possible. Stay strong, stay true to yourself, and most of all, don’t make anyone else responsible for your dreams. They are yours, cherish and respect them with an honest heart.

NOW, for fun, anyone who responds to this post is entered to win one of these two books, they’re both dangerous, sexy, paranormal, and HOT. I’ll choose two winners tomorrow at noon:
(Don't forget to leave your email address, and your format choice - the books are available in Kindle, ePub, and PDF)

STOLEN RAPTURE: When work brings Deluna Jordan face to face with a man who knows her better than she knows herself, she soon discovers he shares everything with his boss, including lovers…and a thirst for blood…and she is about to become the lucky recipient of all their desires…

HUNTERS’ GAME: In modern Toronto, two vampires stalk the night, their hunting a game that is seductive and deadly. In a darkly compelling Goth Club, they find the prey they seek for their pleasures, and the night runs crimson with blood and unquenchable thirsts....

Also, drop by today’s
and check out my sexy desert island fantasy tale, STRANDED!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Just Perfect Book Blast

Just Perfect
by JoMarie DeGioia



William Chesterton, the Earl of Chester, might be the perfect gentleman, but his feelings for Constance Bridgewater are anything but gentlemanly.

Constance Bridgewater, the daughter of the late Earl of Bridgewater, might be the perfect lady, but her feelings for the Earl of Chester are anything but ladylike.

They both know that if they were together, everything would be just perfect.

So what is keeping them apart?



“You can’t deny the party last night was delightful, Constance.”

Constance read the extreme interest in her cousin Sarah’s countenance. Her eyes were almost wild.

“I believe I told you it was so,” Constance said.

“And what of the gentlemen there?” Sarah persisted. “Do you deny that you enjoyed dancing with them?”

Constance took a measured breath, keeping her pique from her own features. “Why ever would I deny that? I enjoyed myself immensely and fancied each gentleman who took my hand in his. There, are you satisfied?”

Sarah blew out a breath and leaned back. “You’re always satisfied.”

Diane Plymouth, their close friend, let out a sigh. “I’m not.”

Constance studied Diane, certain she had heard her incorrectly. “What do you mean, Diane?”

She waved a hand. “I’m unable to settle on a gentleman, I’m afraid. I want to marry and settle down, like our other friends have.”

Constance quelled her feelings. She so wanted that as well, but it wouldn’t do to appear as desperate as these two. It wasn’t in keeping with her image of the cool and perfect young society miss. This morning she was immensely chafed by that mantel.

“It’s a pity so many eligible men have been snatched from the marriage market.” Sarah sighed, then suddenly brightened. “There are still several left for the taking, Diane. Don’t give up hope.”

“True, but I don’t know where to set my cap,” Diane said. “I have a few men in mind, but I just can’t decide.”

Constance didn’t want to ask, she truly didn’t. Burning interest in the social swirl of the season was expected, however.

“Which gentlemen are you considering?” she asked Diane.

“Well, there are several,” Diane said, her eyes bright as she warmed to her topic. “Take Lord Kanewood’s circle.”

Sarah snorted. “Two down, two to go.”

Diane nodded. “I chose that particular group of gentlemen to demonstrate my sad state.”

“Really?” Constance said, curious despite herself. “Why those particular men?”

Sarah nodded, leaning forward. “They are such diverse gentlemen, in looks and temperament.”

“Exactly,” Diane said. “Take Lord Kanewood.”

“Yes, please,” Sarah put in.

Constance laughed. “He’s married, Sarah. And quite happily.”

Sarah grinned and nodded. “Yes, yes. Go on, Diane.”

“He’s the leader of their circle, commanding and very handsome. Yet he was caught.”

“And gone from the market.” Sarah sighed.

“Now, take Lord Leed,” Diane went on.

“Yes, please,” Sarah said again.

“Sarah,” Constance said with another laugh.

“Lord Leed,” Diane went on, her face dreamy now. “Dark and brooding and so . . .” She sighed.

“Yes,” Constance said. “Another gentleman happily married.”

“Oh, but Lord Roberts!” Diane gushed now. “He’s still available. And so charming and attentive toward me.”

“As he is toward most every lady.” Sarah pouted. “A girl can’t count on his charm to land on her alone.”

“But I’ve seen his sparkling gray eyes in my dreams,” Diane said.

Constance silently allowed that there wasn’t a more charming man of their acquaintance than Lord Roberts, not that she’d seen his particular eyes in her dreams. No. It was one particular pair of warm, brown eyes that made her body ache, in and out of her dreams. Not to mention his thick, blond hair. It looked so soft . . . she shook herself back to her boring, wakeful existence.

“Lord Roberts has gone to the country, Diane,” she said. “And will no doubt remain there for some time.”

“Yes, his father has reportedly taken ill,” Sarah said. “Pity that, though it might lead to an elevation in his station from viscount to earl.”

“Sarah!” Constance said. “How can you wish such sadness on Lord Roberts?”

“Oh, I don’t, not really,” Sarah said. “I just wish he was in town this season. He’s one of the few unattached gentlemen who draws my attention.”

“Your attention is drawn to every handsome face with a title and fortune,” Diane said. “I daresay I would take Lord Roberts with neither.”

Sarah snorted in obvious disbelief. “Be that as it may, he’s well and gone from London and we’ll have to set our caps for different gentlemen if we have any hope of marrying before this new season ends.”

The two other girls grew quiet, which unsettled Constance more than their chatter had. It was inevitable, the new course their conversation would take. She braced herself for the realization to strike the two of them.

“There is at least one who is available and quite attractive,” Diane said.

Constance’s hands fluttered in her lap and she fought to keep them still. “Which gentleman?” she asked, as if she didn’t know.

“Hmm, yes,” Sarah mused aloud. “There is always Lord Chester.”

And there it was. The mention of the very man Constance couldn’t get out of her mind. “L-Lord Chester?”

“Oh, yes, Lord Chester!” Diane cried. “He’s quite handsome and most pleasant. Though I can’t quite sketch a true picture of his character.”

Constance knew what she meant, for he was always so perfect in every social situation. Saying the right thing, dressed the right way, acting in the right manner. Aside from those blessed moments he’d held her in his arms at Leed Manor, that is.

“He has done work for Lord Kanewood. That is certain,” Sarah said. “During that business with the earl’s brother, at least.”

Diane shivered. “Horrid, that. Stealing funds and attempted murder?”

Sarah nodded, her eyes bright. “It’s rumored that Lord Chester has worked with the government, but no one can say in what capacity. He’s well-respected and his opinions count in Parliament. He’s affable and most pleasant, I’ll allow. Well-connected and wealthy, and welcome wherever he goes.”

“A perfect gentleman,” Diane concluded.

Constance could practically see the interest sparking in the girl’s mind. She wouldn’t let it smolder into flames of desire, however. Lord Chester wasn’t for Diane, or even Sarah for that matter. He was for her.

She alone had seen the dark glint of intent in those deep brown eyes of his as he stole glances at her from across the ballroom. She alone had encountered the tenseness of his firmly muscled body as he held her sedately during the dance. She alone had felt the impact of his intriguing smile, curved with heat instead of politeness as he’d nearly kissed her.

Yes, she knew there was far more to the Earl of Chester than the well-connected perfect gentleman. Far more.

And she would die before she let another lady steal him from her. 


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

 JoMarie DeGioia has been making up stories for as long as she can remember, and has spent years giving voice to the characters in her head. She’s known Mickey Mouse from the “inside,” has been a copyeditor for her town’s newspaper, and a bookseller. She writes Historical and Contemporary Romances, along with Young and New Adult Fantasy stories. She divides her time between Central Florida and New England.

You can contact her HERE

Monday, July 15, 2013

Self's Blossom by David Russell

This is about a young woman's self-discovery. Selene is a 'success story', having become a top journalist, while retaining her dazzling looks. However, in the past she has had unhappy relationships, and feels she has missed out on hedonistic fun.  This she obtains, firstly with a young stranger on a beach, and finally with enigmatic Hudson: tryst is preceded by cultural tourism, and careful sizing up of minds. Afterwards Selene returns to her 'I stand on my own' attitude.
While she is on holiday, her mind is free to ramble, often into Selene's chequered past. Flashback blurs into the present, past-rooted interior monologue into direct observation. The dialogue is sparse. Selene is a cautious, premeditative type, in whom thought, reflection and analysis outweigh direct action.

Selene’s subtle, monitoring mind coolly observes and controls all the events. Maybe she is super-confident, or perhaps has a deep, underlying insecurity. She is many things to many readers.


Here, she was on a beach, pure and simple. Now the sea breathed heavily, whispering and murmuring to her. It was returning her stare, speaking to her. It was the spirit of love, beckoning her with a pulsing, sinewy body. In all its lines, shades, and fleeting forms, Selene saw the essence of pure beauty, all grace of form, flesh, limb and feature. It was in one, all the lovers of whom she could possibly dream, conflated into one elemental ideal. He, pure love in soul, bade her to enter his domain and make it hers. His arms moved her hands to unclasp, unbutton, and unzip . . . the blossom emerged. The sun became the eye of all that was not earth, and Selene loved fully, though the pallor of her skin left her momentarily abashed.

At first she lay in the tide's path, the top of her head at its most extreme mark. The sand bank made a soft bed. The sea lover smoothly caressed her calves, thighs, hips, breasts, shoulders, and cheeks before retreating to pause in his mossy pinnacles. Three times this action was repeated, and then Selene stood up, wading in with arms outstretched. Her arms were linked, as she stood up to her neck in the saline flow. The balls and heels of her feet wobbled, slithering on the moss. With the next wave, she lost her balance – her breath prepared in unison with the hissing around her. She threw her head back, once again horizontal, and launched into a backstroke, sweeping and circling. She parted her legs wide with each thrust of motion, each sweep of self-propulsion pushing out to answer the cavernous currents of his passion. Seven circles gave her a delicious, warm bliss –then the sea lover, well pleased, carried her back to a near-dry bed. Aching and contented, Selene dozed a while.



B. 1940; live in London UK. Have been writing for many decades. My first publication was a poetry collection called Exacting Modality of the World Web. I produced a work of speculative fiction, High Wired On in 1985. I started trying to write literary erotica in the mid-80s. I have some short stories in this genre in addition to Self’s Blossom: Explorations, Further Explorations and Therapy Rapture. My next release with Extasy, Darlene is due at the beginning of August. I am also a singer-guitarist-songwriter. My main albums are Bacteria Shrapnel and Kaleidoscope Concentrate. I have many tracks on YouTube. 

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Blood Destiny Series Book Blast


by Helen Harper




Mackenzie Smith has always known that she was different. Growing up as the only human in a pack of rural shapeshifters will do that to you, but then couple it with some mean fighting skills and a fiery temper and you end up with a woman that few will dare to cross. However, when the only father figure in her life is brutally murdered, and the dangerous Brethren with their predatory Lord Alpha come to investigate, Mack has to not only ensure the physical safety of her adopted family by hiding her apparent humanity, she also has to seek the blood-soaked vengeance that she craves.


After escaping the claws of Corrigan, the Lord Alpha of the Brethren, Mack is trying to lead a quiet lonely life in Inverness in rural Scotland, away from anyone who might happen to be a shapeshifter. However, when she lands a job at an old bookstore owned by a mysterious elderly woman who not only has a familiar passion for herbal lore but also seems to know more than she should, Mack ends up caught in a maelstrom between the Ministry of Mages, the Fae and the Brethren. 

Now she has to decide between staying hidden and facing the music, as well as confronting her real feelings for the green eyed power of Corrigan himself.


Mack begins her training at the mages' academy in the hope that, by complying, the stasis spell will be lifted from her old friend, Mrs. Alcoon. However, once there, she finds herself surrounded by unfriendly adults and petulant teenagers, the majority of whom seem determined to see her fail. 

Feeling attacked on all fronts, Mack finds it harder and harder to keep a rein on her temper. Forced to attend anger management classes and deal with the predatory attentions of Corrigan, the Lord Alpha of the shapeshifter world, her emotions start to unravel. But when she comes across a familiar text within the walls of the mages' library, which might just provide the clues she needs to unlock the secrets of her background and her dragon blood, she realises that her problems are only just beginning...


EXCERPT  from Bloodfire:

Forgetting that I was supposed to be keeping my head down, I scanned the ranks of the other Brethren shifters. I was curious now about what their feelings were about taking in some of their distant country bumpkin cousins.  My eyes travelled down the line.  There was a bored looking blonde haired woman with a stance that suggested predator –wolf perhaps – then a slight dark man who was obviously a fox judging by the calculating cunning in his eyes, then there was…uh-oh.

The next shifter was looking right at me.  Green gold predatory eyes gazed into mine expressionlessly.  I snapped my eyes back to the floor and stopped breathing.

I’m no-one, no-one worthy of attention, I whispered silently, trying to quash the rising panic.  I couldn’t endanger the rest of the pack by being discovered.  Every sinew in my body screamed but I forced myself to keep my eyes and head trained on the ground.

Don’t look up.  Don’t look up.  Don’t look up.  Seconds passed.  Minutes.


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Helen Harper is an English teacher currently living abroad in Malaysia. As a long time reader of urban fantasy, she finally bit the bullet and began to develop her own series of novels.

Helen has always been a book lover, devouring science fiction and fantasy tales when she was a child growing up in Scotland. "I always loved the escapism provided by those genres," states Helen. "No matter how bad life gets, you can always find a route out, even if only temporarily, in the pages of a good book."

The growth of urban fantasy fascinated her - the mix of reality and fantasy along with strong heroic female characters appealed from the very beginning, and inspired her to write her own.

Amazon.com buy links:

Cassie Scot: Paranormal Detective

Cassie Scot: Paranormal Detective
by Christine Amsden


Cassie Scot is the ungifted daughter of powerful sorcerers, born between worlds but belonging to neither. At 21, all she wants is to find a place for herself, but earning a living as a private investigator in the shadow of her family’s reputation isn’t easy. When she is pulled into a paranormal investigation, and tempted by a powerful and handsome sorcerer, she will have to decide where she truly belongs.



At random, I picked up a bottle of perfume from the top shelf and read: “Induces powerful lust. Spray on your intended and make sure you are the first person they see. Lasts about an hour.”
The thing you have to understand about any magic is that there are good ways to use it, and bad ways to use it. The concept of black magic is a hotly debated topic among sorcerers. Even death, in self defense, is a shade of gray. As I stood there, reading the functions of the various love potions, I thought of all the innocent and harmful ways they could be used. A couple in a committed relationship might have a lot of fun with a spray of lust. On the other hand, using it on an unwilling victim...
I shuddered as I replaced the bottle and accidentally knocked one of the neighboring bottles of perfume to the ground. It shattered, splashing perfume all over my open-toed sandals.
“What happened?” Evan asked, his voice hard and alert. I could hear him moving closer.
“Stop! I don't want to see you right now.”
“Which potion was that?” Evan asked, still in that hard-edged voice of command.
I pointed to the row of similar bottles on the top shelf. “Lust.”
One of the little bottles floated away from the shelf, but I did not turn around to see what Evan was doing with it. Instead, I started looking through my purse for a pack of tissues to clean the mess off my feet.
“Cassie, I have some bad news for you.”
“Worse, you mean?”
“This potion doesn't take affect until you actually look at someone. Your hour starts then.”


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Award-winning author Christine Amsden has written stories since she was eight, always with a touch of the strange or unusual. She became a “serious” writer in 2003, after attending a boot camp with Orson Scott Card. She finished Touch of Fate shortly afterward, then penned The Immortality Virus, which won two awards. Expect many more titles by this up-and-coming author.

Christine will be awarding a $10 Amazon gift card to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour.

Follow the tour and comment at each stop because the more you comment, the better your chances of winning.