Sunday, December 21, 2014

ARC Review: The Duke in My Bed (The Heirs' Club Trilogy, Book One) by Amelia Grey


Book Details:

The Duke in My Bed
Amelia Grey

Genre: Historical Romance

Tour Organizer: N K Author Services


About The Duke in My Bed:

From bestselling author Amelia Grey comes The Duke in My Bed, a wickedly romantic tale of one reckless bachelor, five unwed sisters, and a wildly unconventional game of love…

HERE COMES THE GROOM

As a notorious member of the Heirs’ Club, Bray Drakestone can’t resist a challenge from one of his well-heeled colleagues—especially when it involves money and horses. But the friendly wager takes an unexpected and deadly turn. Bray is forced to agree to marry one of his challenger’s five sisters—sight unseen. Now gamblers all over London are placing bets on whether Bray will actually go through with it…

THERE GOES THE BRIDE

Miss Louisa Prim, the eldest sister, doesn’t care a whit what the reckless rogue at the Heirs’ Club promised her brother—she has no intention of marrying the future Duke of Drakestone. Bray, however, sees her rejection as another challenge. He bets that the fiery Miss Prim will not only agree to marry him, she will propose to him! With four sisters behind her, Louisa knows she can’t lose. But why does her opponent have to be a divinely handsome scoundrel? And so sweetly, irresistibly seductive…

Sapphyria's Review:

After a foolish wager that leads to the death of a friend, Bray Drakestone finds himself betrothed to his friend's oldest sister.  His deathbed vow to his mortally wounded friend, Nathan, is heard by several witnesses and now his love life is the subject of several wagers all over London.  Bray has no intention of fulfilling his promise, but when Nathan's 5 sisters are turned over to him for complete guardianship some time later, and he has to confront them, he may have to change his tune.

Louisa hasn't been able to properly mourn the loss of her brother Nathan.  As oldest sister, Louisa has to stay strong for her four younger sisters.  Now that Gwen is of age, and the small family has returned to London to give Gwen a proper Season.  Louisa's interest in His Grace, Bray Drakestone is nil and her future plans do not include him in any aspect -- until he comes to her door as newly appointed guardian of the Sisters Prim.

  Louisa is strong willed, hard headed, and very much the protector of her 4 sisters.  She's endured a lifetime's amount of loss in her young age and has had to assume the responsibility of both mother and father to her sisters, even more so after her brother dies.  She hasn't the time for rakish dukes and the agreements they make to ease their consciences.  Louisa hasn't been given a proper Season so her experience around men is limited but there is just something about the duke that had her heart racing and her breathing hitched.  Bray can, and has, had any woman he wants in his bed.

Bray isn't looking for an instant family, in fact, he doesn't even want to make good on his word to marry Louisa....that is, until he actually meets her.  He's broken so many hearts that he has lost count.  He doesn't want a wife; he is content with trysts and wanton women and being in the presence of Miss Prim causes him to have Improper thoughts but only about her.

What ensues is a challenge of wits and games of the mind.  Both Louisa and Bray begin to feel things that neither has experienced before.  Both adamant that they aren't going to marry because of a vow made during a tragedy, their lives continue to intersect in ways that infuriate Louisa and amuse Bray.
The Duke in My Bed doesn't just focus on the bantering and sexual tension between Louisa and Bray, giving the book even more depth than it already has.  This historical novel also adds in the requirements of Gwen's Season and the hustle and bustle involved in preparing a young woman of proper age to be presented to the Ton as marriage material.  The wagers made on whether Bray will or won't marry Louisa don't just extend to the titled men in London; the Prince also gets involved.  His involvement, however, may destroy England and many guilt trips are laid at the feet of both Bray and Louisa.

What ever are Louisa and Bray to do?

The Duke in My Bed is a really great historical novel that is mostly clean.  There are references to things sexual in nature but it's not over the top.  I enjoyed the inflexibility of Louisa as she attempts to stand firm in her convictions in a time period where women are nothing more than possessions that provide heirs.  Propriety is expected only of the young ladies and women, yet the men can "do" whatever and whomever.  Louisa's hesitancy to become involved with Bray is understandable; his reputation isn't exactly stellar nor is it a secret.

As the story progresses, though, you see the only child in Bray evolve and embrace the idea of siblings.  His demeanor changes and his rakish actions lessen.  Bray begins to think like a guardian and protector of his new little brood.  There are, of course, the misunderstandings that change the course of the characters and it's entertaining to watch the outcomes and realizations unfold.

The absolute best part of this novel is that way the author is able to draw out the emotions of the characters in such a way that the reader feels them, as well.  This, in my opinion, it was separates the excellence from the so-so.  I want to be able to feel the anguish as if I'm the person upset; I want to cry if that's what the scene calls for; I want to laugh at the silliness of the antics that are written on the page.  The Duke in My Bed has several scenes that just take over and control my emotions and that, my friends, is what it's all about.  A book could have the perfect plot, excellent characters, and a great story but if it doesn't pull me in, keep me engaged, and run me through a gauntlet of emotions then all that greatness is wasted.  Fortunately, this novel has a fantastic plot, excellent characters, a great story, and is full of superbly written scenes with emotional content and believability.

Amelia Grey's first book in The Heirs' Club Trilogy does everything it's supposed to do and more.  What an excellent introduction to her new series!!  I can't wait for Book 2.

ARC paperback review copy courtesy of the author/publisher, at no cost, in exchange for an honest review.

Sapphyria's Rating:


Pre-Order Your Copy at Amazon:

About the Author:


New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Amelia Grey read her first romance book when she was thirteen. She’s been a devoted reader of love stories ever since. 

Amelia has been happily married to her high school sweetheart for over thirty-five years and she lives on the beautiful gulf coast of Northwest Florida.

With more than twenty-five books published, she is a two-time winner of the prestigious Booksellers Best Award. She’s also won the Aspen Gold, and the Golden Quill Awards. Writing as Gloria Dale Skinner, she won the coveted Romantic Times Award for Love and Laughter and the Maggie Award. Amelia’s books have been published in Europe, Indonesia, Turkey, Russia, and Japan.

Several of her books have been featured in Doubleday and Rhapsody Book Clubs.

You can follow Amelia on Facebook at or email her at AmeliaGrey@comcast.net to be added to her newsletter and contest list.

Release Blitz: I Love You, Salvatore (The Five Families Series) by Marita A. Hansen


I Love You, Salvatore

The Five Families Series

by Marita A. Hansen

Publication Date: December 21, 2014



About The Series:


Santini

D’Angelo

Landi

Donatelli

Rosso

About I Love You, Salvatore:

The Five Families series is a collection of standalone novels and novellas centered around different members of ruling mafia families on a famous island off the southern coast of Italy.

Every love story is important, whether it ends in a happy-ever-after or tragedy, because two people shared something so special that it made them value each other’s life more than their own. I know this is true because my life with Salvatore Santini was a beautiful love story… One that ended far too soon. But I would rather live for only one day with him, than suffer a lifetime without him. Being with Salvatore was worth a thousand deaths. Through him, I experienced heaven on earth, something very few people find. So don’t cry for me, I was truly happy. But if you can’t stop your tears, save them for Salvatore… The one I left behind. Books from this series can be read as a companion to The Santini Brothers and My Masters' Nightmare series. I Love You, Salvatore covers 26 years, chronicling Rosa's and Salvatore's love story. It's broken up into 3 parts: The Early Years (age 10-19), The Middle Years (20-29), The Final Years (30-36), with a current 2014 scene spliced through. It's from Rosa's point of view.

Purchase a Copy:

Amazon --- 

 UK | CA

Smashwords --- I Love You, Salvatore

Teaser:



About the Author:



NATIONALITY AND CULTURAL CONNECTIONS: I'm a true blue Aucklander, born and bred in New Zealand. I tend to write about cultures I have connections to, such as Croatian and Maori. I would love to visit Croatia again as I have family there. However, in My Masters' Nightmare, I have started writing about Italians . My husband is part Italian and I also have a degree in Italian. SPORTS: As a teen my favorite sports were karate, badminton, and running. I also did unarmed combat and played in a touch rugby team (my gym teacher made me do the last one!) Now, I stick to coaching soccer and running. I have completed two marathons, numerous half-marathons and one 30K run. CAREER PATH: I started off as a Graphic Designer, then went to Auckland University, where I got a BA degree in Art History and Italian Studies and a post-graduate Honors degree in Art History. I worked in the Art History field, then became a full-time artist, doing commissions. I eventually lost all of my senses and gave it up to be a poor, starving writer, smh. FAVORITE FOODS: I'm vegetarian. I love pasta based foods, tofu, chocolate mousse and golden queen peaches. BAD HABITS: I'm a major procrastinator that can't seem to earn money to save myself! STATUS: Married to my high school sweetheart (which he hates me calling him). We have two kids.

Find Marita Online:


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Saturday, December 20, 2014

Midwinter's Ever Givaway Blog Hop (US mailing addresses only, please)


Welcome to the 2014 Midwinter's Eve Giveaway Hop hosted by Bookhounds and I Am A Reader, Not A Writer.

What is up for grabs today?

An audiobook (CD/MP3) of:

Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal MP3 CD – Audiobook

Click the following Amazon link to read what it's all about:


Here is a photo of the cover:



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Join Jonathan Black as He Answers Questions about His Newest Novel Speaking of Murder


About SPEAKING OF MURDER by Jonathan Black:

Speaking of Murder is a suspenseful mystery about a serial killer who targets a unique group of victims: motivational speakers. Witty, taut, and fast-paced, this is a terrific fiction debut from the former long-time managing editor of Playboy.

Hank Fowler is finally getting is life back together after his divorce and “early retirement” from reporting at Chicago’s biggest daily. But the tranquility doesn’t last long. After receiving an odd phone call from his old college roommate, who turns up dead shortly thereafter, Hank can’t help but investigate the case. Several more bodies are found in similarly mysterious circumstances, and the victims all have one trait in common: they are—or were—motivational speakers.

Meanwhile, Hank meets Rachel, newly divorced and trying to write a book, after she enrolls in Hank’s writing class. With her notalways-welcome help, Hank sets out to track down the killer. In this compelling, well-knit narrative, Jonathan Black creates a fast-paced murder mystery for the digital age. Speaking of Murder is a contemporary whodunit that should appeal to all lovers of the mystery genre.

Speaking of Murder is available in all popular ebook formats and accessible from all ereader and tablet devices.

Speaking of Murder, Agate Digital, 978-1-57284-490-2, Fiction/mystery

Purchase Your Copy from Amazon:


About the Author:

Jonathan Black is the former managing editor of Playboy magazine. The author of Yes, You Can!, a nonfiction book about motivational speakers, Black is currently a professor of journalism at DePaul University. His writing has appeared in USA Today, New York Times, Chicago Tribune, among others. He worked at various magazines in New York before moving to Chicago.

Agate Digital is the newest venture from Chicago-based Agate Publishing, which partners with other forward-thinking media creators to publish affordable ebooks on a wide range of topics.

Enjoy a Q & A session with Jonathan Black, author of Speaking of Murder:

What inspired you to write Speaking of Murder?

I wrote a nonfiction book about motivational speakers (Yes You Can!) and remained fascinated by their appeal. It’s tempting to dismiss them as quacks and charlatans: they make it up as they go, they’re hypocrites who live in trailer parks, they drink all day. In large part, that’s our way of defending ourselves against their message—that we can all do better with our lives. We’d rather kill the messenger than heed what they have to say. There is, of course, a darker side to the uplift culture. One of the beefs I have with motivational speakers is that they preach an upbeat message but never bother with consequences. I like to think a certain entropy prevails, that the increase in one person’s happiness might come at the terrible expense of another. Then what? That’s the source of the murderous plot in Speaking of Murder.

What made you set this novel in Chicago?

Chicago is a great American city but full of contradictions. It’s both sophisticated and provincial, progressive yet tied to its past, rabidly proud yet prone to comparison. It’s these dualities that made it a fun backdrop for the book, whose main characters also shuttle between identities. They, too, are between things; it’s how most of us fall into new adventures, dangerous and otherwise. Of course I live in Chicago, which made it very convenient to set the book here. I’m also a New York transplant, which helps explains some of the attitude.

How much of your own experience shaped this narrative?

Professionally, I was a journalist like the novel’s lead character, Hank. I was laid off and had to grapple with changed circumstances, not all to my liking. It’s tough to go from a big job to scraping together a living. It was a challenge to pursue new directions, but fun to pursue new experiences. You have to if you want to remain alive and productive, but you never know where your instincts will take you. You’re working without a net. That’s the risk, and it’s what happens to the book’s protagonist, Hank. Like Hank, I fell into travel writing, which can be a tricky occupation: you’re often on the outside, trying to go someplace where you have no business. Non-professionally, I’ve had several friends from long ago who had a dramatic impact on my life but then disappeared. I imagine we’ve all had a couple of people like that in our lives. But what happens when they surface, and you’re no longer confident you know them? What happens when they appear with a new and scary agenda? That’s what Hank faces.

There are aspects of the book that get quite grisly. Is that something that appeals to you?

In our imagination, I think we’re all drawn to people with dark impulses who act out what we wouldn’t ever consider. I did find it surprising how easily I could drift into grim situations and macabre details. That’s the fun of being a writer.

The lead character has a quirky ally in the book—any chance we might see them again?

I didn’t set out to give Hank a woman friend. But the more I wrote about Rachel, the more I liked her. She was blunt and resourceful, and she turned out to be a very useful ally of Hank’s, though of course he resisted her throughout. They are already arguing about a new and mysterious series of murders.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Blog Tour Wrap Up with Exclusive Excerpt/Guest Blog & Giveaway: Hunters, Book One, by Aoife Marie Sheridan


Welcome to the last stop in the blog tour for Hunters by Aoife Marie Sheridan

Follow along as you read about the book and an exclusive excerpt specifically for my blog post today. Don't leave after you read the excerpt, though. There is author information and a giveaway to enter. Thank you for stopping by Sapphyria's Book Reviews today.


Book Details:

Hunters
Book One
Aoife Marie Sheridan

Genre: Paranormal, Romance

ISBN: 9781495430725

Word Count: 62,000

Cover Artist: Airicka’s Mystical Creations

Book Description:

Abigail is nineteen, her job she hunts demons.

Her life so far has been tough, having witnessed her family’s death and her mother’s suicide she’s taken in by a priest, who believes her when she says she sees ghosts. Father Peter trains her as a demon hunter with three other members, one being Daniel, who isn’t what he seems.

But when a possession goes wrong, and ghosts start to attack Abigail, the tight rope she had on her emotions soon starts to loosen.

Abigail draws the unwanted attention of the Vatican, and she finds out a lot more then she was willing to learn.

Knowledge is power, but for Abigail it’s her undoing, and the only thing keeping her together is Daniel.

Watch the Book Trailer: http://youtu.be/7KT2Xy6hh7k

Read the Exclusive Excerpt:

TAKEN FROM HUNTERS – CHAPTER EIGHT – DEMON TRAP (ABIGAIL) 

It took us nearly an hour to locate Stacey’s house. Her memory wasn’t great and it took four estates before we found hers. 

“This is it!” she said, and her enthusiasm died as I made my way to the door. She fidgeted with her hands, nervous now. Her fingers brushed through her golden hair and that’s when her wounds became visible to me; I watched as Stacey put the pieces of her death together, like all spirits who bring to memory their deaths, her wounds began to resurface. She was remembering what happened, I tried not to look away as the transformation began, half of her skull was bashed in and blood started to taint her hair and clothes. I looked away as my stomach heaved, I couldn’t watch anymore. 

“Do I look okay?” she asked. 

I swallowed and gave her a smile. “You look great.” No point in telling her that she looked like something from a horror movie. 

The door opened, and before I could say hello, Stacey started mumbling, “Mum.” But the women looked at me… waiting, not hearing her daughter. 

“Mrs. Moore, do you have a moment, please?” She looked at me, unsure. I really should have changed. “I’m a friend of Stacey’s,” I said. 

The woman opened the door and her eyes filled with sorrow, “Come in, dear.” 

I crossed the threshold and Stacey followed, her movements becoming stiff. 

Something felt off, really wrong. Maybe it was Stacey being home. I sat down on a worn brown settee, my body not settling. 

Mrs. Moore sat across from me, her hands knotted together “How did you say you knew my daughter?” she asked while looking around nervously, as if she could feel the shift in the atmosphere. 

I looked at Stacey, but she was unsettled. Her body was phasing in and out and alarm was on her face. 

“What was your name?” Mrs. Moore’s voice came through my cloud of thought. 

I looked at her weary face now. “Abigail,” I answered as I looked back at Stacey, who was almost invisible now. 

Something was really wrong here. Bad vibes hit me in waves, and my stomach knotted. 

“Is there anyone else here?” I asked. 

Mrs. Moore stood, looking alarmed. “I think it’s best if you leave.” 

I stood too, with no intentions of leaving. I looked around the small sitting room. Photos of the family adorned the wall, three blonde girls, Mrs. Moore, who looked healthy and happy, and a tall man with a deep set of blue eyes and the blond hair that he had given to his two beautiful daughters. Stacey was smiling in the photo, wearing a snow white summer dress, the same one she had appeared to me in. 

“When was this photo taken?” I asked. 

“Five years ago. Now, I think it’s best if you leave!” she said, looking afraid for the first time. Stacey’s outline started to appear. 

“What age was Stacey when she died?” 

Mrs. Moore looked about ready to bolt from the room, but I grabbed her arm. “She was fifteen. It was an accident,” she said as her eyes filled with tears. 

“You lied to me!” I said to Stacey as she hovered at the door. 

“Just like you lied to your friend.” Something sinister crossed her face. 

“Oh no, I’m sorry. Please, don’t let her hurt me!” Mrs. Moore was on her knees, with her hands in a praying gesture. 

The woman’s eyes were pleading, terrified as her eyes went to the area that Stacey now vacated. The light bulb overhead started to glow brightly and smashed into a million pieces, raining down on us. I covered my head as small bits pierced my skin. I hated when they did that. 

“Where are you?” Stacey roared and the photos on the wall started to shake, leaping from the wall before crashing to the ground. Her outline glowered an ugly red as her anger grew. She would take down the whole house. 

“Mammy!” The scream of a terrified young girl came from upstairs. I met Stacey’s eyes as she disappeared through the ceiling and the girl’s screams became blood curling. I raced up the stairs as ornaments and pictures were flung in every direction. 

I dodged as much as I could, but still got hit all the same. When I opened the door that the screams were coming from, Stacey had turned into something ugly. Her outline now black as blood dripped from her. The young girl’s room was smashed to pieces. The only piece of furniture still in place was the bed where the little girl sat on, her knees drawn up to her chest as she tried to protect herself. The bed levitated off the floor. I could hear her mother’s soft whispers of prayer as she stayed downstairs. Maybe fear kept her rooted, or she believed that God would intervene. Good luck with that, I thought. 

“Stacey Moore, your time ends now in this world” I removed my cross and the bottle of holy water from the inside of my coat, and as I started to splash her with it, the bed hit the floor with a thud and all movement ceased as Stacey turned to me. 

Her face became young again. Innocence radiated from her now large green eyes. “He hurt me so bad, who will make him pay? Who will remind them of what they let him got away with? What about me? Does no one care about me?” Her face started to darken again. I needed to keep this spirit calm. A soft glow beside the little girl started to get brighter. Her guardian angel becoming more protective. Stacey laughed. “Where was my angel when he bashed my head in?” 

She raced towards me with an angry scream and everything turned dark. 

*** 

I opened my eyes but couldn’t see my own hand in front of me. I stood on shaky legs. A whisper brushed the back of my neck. I turned holding out my hands, trying to feel what was behind me, but my hands brushed through air. Laughter came from my right and I moved in that direction, but once again, I could only see darkness. Then a small light moved towards me and Stacey’s face jumped out, making a scream leap from my throat. I took a step back, trying to regain my composure. I hated when they did that. Half of her face was smashed in, the skull sunken from where a large object had bashed it and blood soaked her face and dress. 

“I know what you are and I want them to pay!” she said. 

Blood had seeped into one of her eyes, making it glow with an angry red hue. The other eye sloped at an odd angle, where the skull was no longer supporting it. 

“I’m a demon hunter. I don’t hurt people,” I said as she moved closer. I looked around, but still couldn’t see anything. “Where am I?” I asked as this had never happened before. 

“You’re inside my head. I needed you to myself for a moment before he came.” She smiled, cracking the blood that had coated her lips. “I know you can hurt them for me,” she said. I wasn’t playing her games, no one was coming she was trying to scare me. 

“Release me now, or I will send you to the pits of hell!” I held her stare, even against how gruesome she looked. 

“Have you ever been to hell, Abigail?” she asked sweetly. 

“Stacey, this is your last warning, Release me, now!” I said. 

Tightness filled my chest, making it hard to breathe. My knees buckled as my vision blurred, and I only had a split second to brace myself as she raced for me, her hands held high, and then she was gone. I looked up and around me, but once again, I was in darkness. The air filled my lungs and the taste of sulfur was overpowering. I stood too quickly as dizziness rushed me; something was here with me, something worse than Stacey. Maybe it was the person who she was talking about. Goose bumps broke out along my arms and the hair rose on the back of my neck. “He’s here!” I turned to the voice and Stacey stared down at me, anger now etched on her face. “My time has run out, Hunter!” she growled, before she raked her now long nails down my face. 

I screamed in agony, my own hands trying to protect myself, but no more pain came. I turned and she was gone. My face stung and my hands trembled as I reached up and touched it gently. Warmth coated my fingertips and I could feel the dripping of the blood from my face. She had dug deep. 

Ten voices came to me at once. I couldn’t find the source or understand the language, but two words were repeated constantly until the noise became louder and louder, “Everto parvulus”. The temperature had dropped and I shivered with the cold. My hair was starting to freeze and the ends held small icicles. The voices stopped and silence filled its void, just before light poured into the darkness. It was too bright and I shielded my face. A roar of anger filled my ears, a roar that I recognized as Zee’s. It sent all my nerves on edge. Air raced towards me along with the light. It was only a blur that passed me, but I knew it was Zee, and then light spread into the room and I could see the demon, its face was contracting into other faces. Each face brought a fresh terror, and then it paused on one and my legs gave out. 

“Dad,” I whispered, and then nothing.


Purchase at Amazon:

Hunters: Hunters (The Demon Series Book 1)

About the Author:



Aoife Marie Sheridan has loved reading from a very young age, starting off with mills and boon's books, given to by her grandmother her love for romances grew, by the age of 14 she had read hundreds of them.

Aoife had a passion for writing poetry or in her eyes her journal entries. It was something she did throughout her teens and into her twenties. Aoife won first place for two of her poems and had them published at a young age of just nineteen. Realising she needed to get a real job (What writing isn't) she studied accountancy and qualified working in that field for many years, until her passion for reading returned and she found Maria V Snyder. Poison study one of her favourite books has been read and re-read countless times.

Aoife's first book Eden Forest (Part one of the Saskia Trilogy) came to be after a dream of a man and woman on a black horse jumping through a wall of fire and the idea of Saskia was born. Now with her first novel published and taking first place for Eden Forest with Writers Got Talent 2013, Aoife continues to write tales of fantasy and is currently working on her third book for the Saskia Trilogy amongst other new works.

Find Aoife Online:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Aoifemariesheri

Website: www.aoifemariesheridan.com

Blog: https://aoifesheri.wordpress.com

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Happy Release Day ~ Disenchanted by Leigh Goff (YA Paranormal)

Welcome to the Release Day Blast for Disenchanted,
a new YA Fantasy novel by 
Leigh Goff


About Disenchanted:

A dark curse, a forbidden love.

Orphaned sixteen-year-old Sophie Goodchild is an outcast among the ordinaries and her coven, but not because she’s untalented. Descended from a powerful Wethersfield witch, her spellcasting gift is awkwardly emerging, but that’s the least of her worries. The boy she’s forbidden to fall for, a descendant of the man who condemned her ancestor to hang, carries a dark secret that could destroy them both unless Sophie learns how to tap into the mysterious power of her diamond bloodcharm. 

Suspenseful, dark, romantic, and brimming with old magic, Disenchanted captures the intrigue of New England’s witchlore.

Book Details:

Title: Disenchanted

Author Name: Leigh Goff

Genre(s): Young Adult, Fantasy Romance

Publisher: Musa Publishing, LLC http://www.musapublishing.com/

ISBN: 978-1-68009-045-1

Release Date: 12/19/2014

Read an Excerpt:

I sat, soaking wet, shaking from the adrenaline. Whoever he was, he rescued me from the would-be thief who bore the symbol of the Leos, a breath-saving nickname I gave Judge Mather’s Law Enforcement Organization. I strained to see, but the rain drops clinging to my long eyelashes blurred my vision. I wiped them away as my heart settled to an even pace.

With his back to me, he watched the thief disappear into the stormy night. He ran his hands through his thick, wavy, wet hair. His broad shoulders relaxed before he turned to offer me assistance. He extended his long arm to help me to my feet. I hesitated for a second, unsure of him, but as he reached for me, our fingers brushed together. A shock of electricity bolted through my hand. I froze as I caught the surprised reaction on his face, telling me he felt it, too. His fingers clasped firmly around mine and, with no effort, he pulled me to my feet. Unsteady, I pressed my hands against his firm muscled chest that showed through the drenched white shirt. A dizzy, swirly sensation swept through my head as if I were on a merry-go-round spinning around at one hundred miles per hour.

He had to be six feet tall.

“Are you okay?” he asked in a smooth British accent. His deep voice vibrated with tension, sending warm chills inside me.

I balanced myself and brushed my wet hair behind my ears, swallowing hard. A British accent that could make a girl melt if the girl didn’t have alarm bells going off in her head. There were no Brits currently living in our small part of Wethersfield, which meant he had to be one of them. My wide eyes flitted around, looking for a clue to make sense of why the statuesque Mather boy with his soaking wet shirt and black tailored pants left the comfort of his father’s manor house to brave the storm.

He stepped closer, breaching the already slim gap between us and forcing my eyes up. The streetlight illuminated his handsome features. His ivory complexion, dappled with raindrops and a shadow of thick stubble, revealed a hint of blush as if it were wintertime and the cold air had plucked at his cheeks.

I followed the perfect straight line of his nose to his brooding, dark eyes full of mystery. His eyes wandered over the details of my face and settled on my own, waiting for me to reply. A warm, wet breeze swirled up from behind him and wrapped his alluring scent around me; clean, floral and woodsy and thoroughly masculine. I inhaled again and again, unable to exhale. With all the plants and flowers I had smelled in my lifetime, he smelled better than any, alone or in combination. I wavered slightly, side to side, feeling dazed. I gulped a mouthful of air, trying not to breathe him in. What was wrong with me? I shook myself out of the stupor.

“Did you know that man?” he asked.

“Did you?” I said in an accusatory tone, but at that moment, I didn’t care about the attacker.

“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” He drew back like I was crazy for suggesting anything.

He was the enemy. Say something, I thought. “What…what are you doing out here anyway?”

He furrowed his eyebrows inward. “Saving you, obviously.”

I threw my hands on my hips, shocked by the irony. A Mather helping a Greensmith? Hell was freezing over somewhere beneath our feet and every kind of farm animal was sprouting wings to fly. “That’s impossible.”

“And why is that?”

“Because…because you’re a Mather,” I said, not meaning to sound disgusted, but I struggled to contain my feelings. Fact was, the Mathers had Greensmith blood on their hands, as well as my coven’s blood. Through Wethersfield’s history, they were known as witch-hunters and with each generation, they changed only to appear more politically correct, but their intentions remained unchanged.

Add Disenchanted to your Goodreads Shelf:


Purchase Your Copy at Musa Publishing:


About the Author:


I love writing young adult fiction with elements of magic and romance because it's also what I like to read. Born and raised on the East Coast, I now live in Maryland, where I enjoy the area's great history and culture.

I am a graduate of the University of Maryland, University College and a member of the Maryland Writers' Association and Romance Writers of America. I am also an approved artist with the Maryland State Arts Council. My debut novel, Disenchanted, was inspired by the Wethersfield witches of Connecticut and will be released by Musa Publishing in December 2014.


For review copies or to arrange an interview, blog visit, or event with the author please click the Sapphyria's Book Promotions banner or you may contact her at saphsbookblog@gmail.com

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Tour & #Giveaway: Shinigami Eyes (Shinigami Eyes, Book #1) by Cheree Smith and Adam Smith


Welcome to the Shinigami Eyes Book Blitz Presented by Dark World Books and Hosted by Sapphyria!


About Shinigami Eyes (Shinigami Eyes, Book #1):

Most children hope to grow out of their imaginary friends.

17-year-old Rin Waters’ only hope is that hers doesn’t kill someone, especially when said imaginary friend puts a boy in a coma. Finding herself shipped half-way around the world—to Japan, of all places—she is forced to live with grandparents she hasn’t seen for ten years and a cousin she can’t even remember.

Rin would rather just forget about the one night that ruined her life and pretend her imaginary friend doesn’t exist—if it was only that easy. When manga-obsessed otaku, Matt, won’t stop pestering her about a manga that sees the future and the tragic accident she’ll be involved in if she doesn’t listen to him, pretending becomes quite a challenge.

Suddenly mysterious accidents begin to happen to students in her school, and Rin has to wonder what length Matt is willing to go to prove his manga is real. Is it all a sham or is there really something that wants to see Rin and her new friends dead?

Read Author Cheree Smith's Favorite Scene in Shinigami Eyes:

“Hurry, Rin-chan, we’re going to be late,” Haruka yells, diving from the train before the doors have even finished opening.

I try and shove my way through the pack of harried commuters crowding the doorway before I lose sight of Haruka. One little train delay, and suddenly everyone is in a rush. It was only like three minutes tops. Maybe ten. Now it looks like we won’t even be stopping for food, in case we’re late for Juku. This sucks.

I watch Haruka tear off up platform, ducking and weaving between pedestrians like she’s trying out for the Olympics. I lose sight of her and suddenly she’s at the far end of the platform. I have to run or else she’ll leave me at the station. I don’t know the way to Juku on my own. Not that I want to go there, but still.

I stop at the top of the stairs, huffing and heaving. I’ve never done so much running in my life. Peering down the steep flight of stairs, I catch a brief fading glimpse of Haruka disappearing down the far end of the hallway like a white rabbit down the rabbit hole. I’m never going to catch her now.
“No. Stop. Wait.” Sucking in a breath, I mutter weakly.

Well, I tried. Maybe if I find a nice place to sit down, she’ll come back for me. Like a McDonalds or something.

A hard shove lands on my back, and I feel the ground fall out from under my feet. My foot catches on the edge of the step, and a sharp jolt race up my leg as I suddenly become airborne. Everything slows and my panicking brain struggles to comprehend my newfound ability to fly. Countless stairs drift by before my eyes as I watch the concrete floor creep up to greet me. Screaming, I squeeze my eyes shut and await the inevitable thud against the hard surface below.

 A firm hand grabs onto me, and I thud into something soft instead.

When I gather up enough courage to finally open my eyes I come face to face with the broad chest of the boy—young man—who caught me. His dark hair hangs casually over eyes brimming with concern.

“Are you okay?” he asks, carefully repositioning his grip on me. His black woollen jumper ripples against his lean, athletic body as he gently lowers me to the ground. The black jumper and faded jeans stretched across well-maintained muscles gives him a look I can only describe as roguish.

“I’m fi—” I start to say, but end up biting back a scream when I try to stand up.

“You are not.” He grasps my ankle.

I cringe as pain shoots up my leg when he moves the ankle back and forth.

“Here, lean on me until you can walk.” The guy pulls me into his arms and starts leading me away from the stairs.

I glance back and think I see a certain blond lurking at the top of the stairs, glancing everywhere and looking shifty, but when I look again he’s gone.

“Hiro~shi~, why’d you run off on me like that?” an incredibly whiny voice calls out as soon as we enter the station proper, and a girl with wavy copper-tone hair comes running over to meet us. The instant she sees me clinging to the guy, a look of pure murder enters her eyes. “Get your hands off of my boyfriend!”

Freaked by the sudden anger directed at me, I reflexively start trying to bury my face into the guy’s chest. This doesn’t seem to do anything to lessen the girl’s rage, for some reason.

“Ease off, Sakura. She fell down the stairs, and injured her ankle. I’m just helping her walk.” He gives her a crooked grin and the girl seems to calm down. “You’re lucky I’m fast on my feet or things could have ended up a lot worse.”

The girl, I belatedly recognise as Sakura, leader of the music club, the one who didn’t show up to club today, turns towards me, and I could swear a scowl tugs at her lips before it’s replaced by a warm smile. “Are you alright, Waters-san?”

“I’m fine.” I try to push myself to a standing position. Away from her boyfriend.
“Oh, so you two know each other then?” Hiroshi frowns at my wobbly distancing and grabs my shoulder to keep me upright.

“Yes, Waters-san joined the music club yesterday. She’s my newest kouhai,” Sakura adds in a sickly sweet voice, still unhappy about my proximity to Hiroshi beneath her friendly grin, but at least no longer looking for a knife to stab me with.

“Found her! She’s over there hugging that boy!” a sudden cheerful voice shouts loud enough to attract the attention of several passing commuters.

Sakura looks ready to snap, and I almost tumble back onto my ass trying to put as much distance between me and her as possible. Hiroshi just laughs and grabs my hand to keep me from falling as a distraught looking Haruka and a way too happy Miki come bounding over to us.

“Rin-chan, gomenne.” Haruka stops in front of me, taking in my awkward stance between Hiroshi and Sakura. “I-turned-around-and-you-weren’t-there. I-looked-everywhere. Where-did-you-go? Miki-chan’s-been-helping-me-look-for-you.”

I can only blink as her hyperspeed rundown washes over me while Miki bounces around beside her like a joyful dog expecting a treat. Sakura just stares at us like she’s planning a killing spree and is trying to work out who to start with.

“She had a bit of trouble on the stairs,” Hiroshi volunteers when it becomes clear no one’s going to talk.

“Stairs?” Haruka stares blankly like the entire concept is foreign.
“I fell down the stairs.”

“Oh my god, are you okay, Rin-chan?” My overly concerned cousin nearly barrels me over in her rush to comfort me.

“I’m fine,” I mutter. Really, I just want people to stop fussing over me.

“Takahashi-san, maybe you should take Waters-san to a hospital? She might need to get looked at.”

Sakura is casual and friendly, but her eyes still glare at Hiroshi’s hand on my arm.

“I’m fine,” I assure them, my much-used catchphrase. Even if I did manage to break a leg, I’d probably still tell them I’m fine. I’d really like for my mother not to hear of this. “I just jarred it, that’s all. I’ll be right in no time.”

“Come on, we’ll skip Juku tonight, let’s get you home.” Haruka grabs me around the waist and Hiroshi finally let’s go, much to Sakura’s relief.

“I’ll help,” Miki pipes up as she grabs my arm, then in her usual energetic way begins bouncing on the spot. Each tug on my arm sends another jolt of pain across my wounded ankle. Oh, yay! Looks like I’ve got two babysitters, one of which is doing more harm than good, to make sure I get home safely. Super.

As I hobble away, well aware of everyone gawking at the scene I’ve caused, I can’t help but notice Sakura throwing herself into Hiroshi’s arms the moment we step away from them. I turn my gaze away from the lovely scene and that’s when my eyes catch on a certain blond kid standing near a cafĂ© on the other side of the station. He’s there watching me, usual manga held open in one hand and clutching something small in the other. He mouths something at me and I can’t help trembling as his warning comes floating back.

‘Be careful on the stairs’.

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About the Authors:


Cheree Smith

Cheree Smith lives in the coastal city of Newcastle in Australia where she is studying graphics design and photography. When she is not hard at study, she is busy writing paranormal, horror and dark stories for young adults. She enjoys listening to and learning about legends and myths, watching scary movies and dreaming up new worlds where monsters can come alive. When she is not in her writing cave she can be found listening to music, even dabbling in the occasional writing of music or reading.

Find Cheree Online:



Adam Smith

Adam Smith has always loved the Japanese culture, which began with his love of anime and manga. This helped him accomplish his goal of moving to Japan to become an ALT (assistant language teacher) in Iwate, Japan. When he’s not reading, writing or speaking Japanese, he is working on paranormal, horror and dark stories for young adults with his sister, Cheree.

Find Adam Online:


Giveaway Details & Entry Form:



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Blurb Blitz Tour & #Giveaway: Ruptured by Maggie Mae Gallagher


Blurb for Ruptured:

It has been eighty-three years since the walls between Earth and Infernus fell, and now our world stands upon the razor’s edge of extinction. Demon platoons are marching upon us. My home, one of humanity’s last bastions of existence, is under siege.

My name is Alana Devereaux. I am the resident demon detector of Cantati Forces and Platoon Commander. My job is to hunt down the vermin unleashed upon my world, and I love it. I live for the day I can kick every last demon’s ass out of this world. Except as enemy forces reign down terror upon us, the Densare Council sentences me to a fate worse than death.


Read an Excerpt:

He held up a hand. Pulled his chair out, turned it around and straddled it.

“But I will follow the orders of the Council. You belong to me. I won’t be cruel or force you tonight. I will give you today to become familiar with me before we consummate our union. I have a mission within the hour, but will visit you tomorrow evening. I will start visiting your room each night at an arranged time depending upon my mission schedule.” It didn’t sound like he liked that little tidbit, that he would be forced to come to my room. Except, the Council had decreed that women were to live below ground as a means of protection. So what he wanted didn’t matter. He still got to bed the General’s daughter, just not on his own terms.

Although, the fact that he had given me an extra night of freedom was more than I had expected from him. Maybe I could, if not feel something for him, at least be less opposed to being with him. 

“Cade, I don’t mean to be difficult. I don’t like that my choice was taken from me. We are both platoon leaders and used to making our own decisions, other than what General O’Hare dictates.”

Could he understand my side at least? Then maybe I wouldn’t feel like I was standing before a firing squad.

“I won’t say I’m displeased. You are one hell of a warrior, and the offspring we will make together will be something fierce. It would help, though, if you didn’t look like you’d just swallowed an explosive.” He meant it. His deep voice rumbled as his gaze roamed over me, stopping ever so briefly at my chest and juncture of my thighs before returning his smoldering stare to my face. There was no way this man would allow me to lie there, unresponsive, while he did his thing. He would make me be present, would not accept any wooden responses, and would do his damnedest to make sure any walls I had built were waylaid into dust.

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About the Author


Bestselling Author Maggie Mae Gallagher doesn’t remember a time when she wasn’t writing. When she was a kid she acted out her favorite scenes, only better, with her brother and cousin. As a teenager, she wrote reams of poetry, but realized her true love lay with creating characters and stories. A former music and history major, Maggie is a total geek at her core. When she is not writing, she adores attending the latest comic con or spending time with her family. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri, with her two furry felines.

Find Maggie Mae Gallagher Online:






Giveaway Details and Entry Form:

Maggie Mae will be awarding a $15 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

Make sure follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. 

The tour dates can be found here: 


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