• Linda Ulleseit, author

  • NaNoWriMo!

Author-go-Round: Nina Day Gerard

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000026_00016]This week’s Author-Go-Round interview with Nina Day Gerard may answer some of the questions you’ve always wanted to ask about romance writing…but were afraid to ask! Welcome, Nina!

Q: How did you become a romance writer?

A: I gave myself the title Accidental Romance Writer. I’ve been writing stories since I was in the third grade, and I’ve been reading romance since high school when I used to trade Harlequin novels with my girlfriends. Then in 2012 I had kind of a V8 moment when I realized “Hey, I could do this—I SHOULD do this!” and that led to my first short story The Long Road Home in the 2014 Shades of Pink Romance Anthology supporting breast cancer research, and my first novel My Brother’s Keeper.

Q: What’s the most popular question you get about being a romance author?

A: The one thing I get asked all the time is whether or not I write about the real-life experiences I’ve had in terms of the relationships or the love scenes. But it’s not classy to kiss and tell, in my opinion.

Q: But aren’t the love scenes—and in some cases the sex scenes—what people most associate with contemporary romance?

A: I would agree with that. And I’m more than happy to talk about what goes into writing those scenes from a crafting standpoint.

Q: How do you decide the heat level of your material in terms of that?

A: The easiest way to answer that is to say that I became inspired to write romance by the love stories I have enjoyed reading. I never set out to write about a certain amount of sex per se. But like any healthy adult romantic relationship, there has to be the right balance of a strong romantic and emotional bond, along with great chemistry and attraction. To me, one just makes the other better, and vice-versa. In a good love story, by the time you get to the first love scene, the reader should experience the intensity of what the two people feel for each other—that just makes the sex better. Those are the kinds of relationships I like to read about, and so that’s how I try to write.

Q: Do you ever get embarrassed when you think about people reading some of those scenes?

A: Oh my gosh, yes! Not the fans per se, these are all readers who are accustomed to the genre and probably expect a certain level of heat. But my mother, for instance, begged me for months to read the manuscript of My Brother’s Keeper. I finally relented and sent it to her. She gave me great feedback, and thankfully had the sense not to mention any of the love scenes. That went undiscussed. But now I don’t feel shy about sharing my writing with her anymore.

Q: What other romance authors have inspired you?

A: At the top of my list would be Maya Banks (KGI and Slow Burn series). She is the master at writing with that balance I was talking about. I love her characters. Same with Christine Feehan (Drake Sisters, Ghost Walker and Sisters of the Heart Series). I devoured these books as soon as they were published.

Q: What’s next for you?

A: Well, the Second Edition of My Brother’s Keeper is now available on Kindle, and Burlesque Bad, Book 1 of my Destiny of Dance series, is due out this summer.

For purchase links and trailer to My Brother’s Keeper, a preview of the Destiny of Dance series, her blog A Fine Romance, and to join Nina’s mailing list for a free exclusive edition of The Long Road Home with story Epilogue, please visit www.ninadaygerard.com. (She’ll never spam you, just periodic updates about her books!)

 

Author-Go-Round: Connie Peck

coverConnie is the author of some of my very favorite horse books for Young Adults. Welcome, Connie!

Thank you for inviting me to your blog. I’m Connie Peck and the stories I write are loosely based on a pony I owned when I was young. Do horses really talk? Can a rider actually understand the thoughts of a horse? You betcha! Every animal communicates. They signal danger and good food, play and even anger or irritation. They even communicate with other species. How do you know what they are saying? By watching and listening. You know what your dog or cat is thinking – at least most of the time, and they seem to know what you’re going to say even before you say it.

I always know what my horse is thinking by the tilt of his ears or the angle of his head. His eye changes ever so slightly to tell me different things, and when his muscles tighten, I know what he’s thinking about doinghorse. And my horse understands me in the very same way. Of course we speak verbally as well. I know his whinny when he wants food, or just wants company, and he knows when I call him or whistle that it’s time to go for a ride – or get a snack.

I learned all this from my pony, Midnight, when I was only eleven years old. That pony actually considered himself to be the trainer of our partnership.

A while back I visited a fourth grade class and we discussed writing books. They couldn’t wait to ask me all sorts of questions. Here are some of my favorites.

  1. How did you make up so many stories?

I write about things I that happened to me, or things I would like to happen. Sometimes I daydream and pretend I’m someone else and make up things to do. When you start by writing about things in your own life, your imagination starts to grow. Then making up new stories gets easier.

  1. Do you ever get tired when you are writing a book?

While I’m writing a real good part of the book and I’m so into it that I lose track of time, I can sit at my desk for hours and not even know it. I’m not a bit tired or hungry or thirsty even. But when I do stop to think about something I just wrote, or I have to stop and think about what’s going to happen next, I might lean back in my chair, and then I think I broke myself in half! I try to stand up and stretch my legs and I’m so stiff I can hardly move. But I didn’t think I was getting tired at all when I was ‘In the Zone’.

  1. Are you famous?

It depends on what you mean by famous?

“Like on TV where everyone knows you.”

Well, my children know me, and my grandchildren know me pretty well. And my mom, all my brothers and sisters and nieces and nephews know me, as well as all my aunts and uncles and cousins. And now you know me. So I guess that makes me sort of famous. Besides, I had an interview on a radio station one time.

“Wow, you are famous!”

  1. Are you a millionaire? ‘Cause everyone who writes a book must be rich.

(I tried not to giggle) If you mean really rich, I can say I’m the richest person I know because of my family and friends, and because I live in America where I can choose my own life. But if you want to know if I have enough money to pay my bills, not yet. In fact, none of the authors I know are rich. (They were really surprised and a little disappointed)

  1. I’m afraid of horses and I don’t really like them, but I like cats. Can you write a book about cats?

I write what I know and love and that’s mostly horses. I don’t know a lot about cats, but I have a couple of cats and they can be funny. You can write a great book about cats if you start writing about what your cat does. You can even make up an adventure for you and your kitty. Maybe someday you will be famous. (That got them excited)

I started my latest book, Belt Buckles and Tiaras, not long after this classroom visit. It is a new line in The Black Pony adventures. Annie and Midnight first met Savannah in the first book when they went to the playday. Annie got to know Savannah a little better in the second book, Midnight and the Racehorse. But Savannah wanted to share her own story and tell how Annie helped her out, just by being a friend.

Sixteen year old Savannah Conway has it all, wealth, beauty, and the finest horses on a ranch in Phoenix. But what is the cost? Her movie-star mother has plans to see her winning every beauty pageant she can find. Right up to Miss America.

When her own dreams of training and showing horses clash with her mother’s plans, Savannah feels betrayed, trapped in a life mapped out for her since birth. But when she meets Annie Beck, a plain girl with an exceptional black pony, doors to another way of life begin to open. A life filled with real friends and freedom of choice.

Can Savannah break her mother’s heart and shatter their dreams for a shot at the title of Miss America just for a fling in the country? Is a compromise possible so she can meet Annie’s friends – and James, who rides the golden dun?

You can find BELT BUCKLES AND TIARAS on Amazon (http://tinyurl.com/nwkpw2v) and the rest of my books on my Author Page 

Please visit me at http://conniepeck.wordpress.com and check out Midnight’s blog, too.

And don’t forget to visit these fabulous authors, also on this tour. Write a comment on something you find interesting.

Feb 8 Nina Day Gerard www.ninadaygerard.com

Feb 15, Miracle Austin www.miracleaustin.com

Eve Connelly. Website www.eveconnelly.wordpress.com

Tracy Lawson. Website www.tracylawsonbooks.com

Linda Ulleseit, Flying Horse books and more, website: www.ulleseit.wordpress.com

Author-go-Round: Me!

 

Ellen001IMG_0447Welcome to the third week of AUTHOR-GO-ROUND! This week it’s my turn.

My grandmother’s grandmother, Ellen VanValkenburgh, fascinated me from a young age. She left a tremendous legacy of strength for the women of my family, and she inspired my novel, Under the Almond Trees. On the left is a photograph taken sometime around the turn of the last century. I’m on the right, 100 years later, wearing the same brooch. Ellen died before my father was born, but here is how I imagine an interview with her might go.

Linda Ulleseit (me): Thank you for speaking with me, Grandma Van.

Ellen VanValkenburgh: What would you like to talk about today?

Me: I’ve always admired the story of you running your husband’s paper mill after he passed away. Was that hard emotionally? I mean was he the love of your life?

Ellen: (laughing) Such a modern idea! In my day we didn’t moon over our men. I did what I had to do to feed my family. I had two daughters then, you know, and a son on the way.

Me: Henry VanValkenburgh was your second marriage, though.

Ellen: That’s true. He was the father of my children, but Jacob… Jacob was my heart.

Me: The love of your life.

Ellen:If you insist. But we only had a short time together.

Me: Yes, true. Can we talk about your time in Santa Cruz? Did running the paper mill make you want to be in politics?

Ellen: Oh, I never wanted to be in politics, but when I tangled with the city over business matters it seemed foolish that women had no part in making decisions about how their city was run. Women couldn’t vote then, you know.

Me: Oh, I know. You fought hard for women to vote. I’m very proud of you for that. You even met Susan B. Anthony, is that right?

Ellen: (nodding) What an earnest face and genial smile she had!. Susan came to Santa Cruz at the request of her brother Elihu, a prominent man in Santa Cruz.

Me: And she inspired you to sue the county?

Ellen: Among others. But yes, I did sue in 1862. The law, after all, said a person born in these United States was a citizen and eligible to vote. Disappointing to learn that the law applied to Negroes but not women.

Me: But you persevered.

Ellen: Didn’t succeed until 1920. I was old by then.

Me: What a tremendous legacy to leave your children, though. What an inspiring life you’ve led.

Ellen: Well, I didn’t intend to be either a legacy or inspiring. I only wanted some say in how my city, and country, was run.

Me: Still, your niece by marriage and your granddaughter hold you in high esteem. As do I.UAT front

Ellen: That’s nice. Neither Nina or Eva were trying to be inspirational either. They just decided what they wanted and stuck to their guns until they got it.

Me: That’s admirable.

Ellen: Well, all right. I guess that’s so. (smiling) Share my story then with whomever you will. I hope they enjoy reading it.

Me: Thank you, Grandma Van. I’m sure they will.

Under the Almond Trees is available on Amazon here.

Also please visit these awesome AUTHOR-GO-ROUND authors:

Tracy Lawson www.tracylawsonbooks.com

Nina Day Gerard, www.ninadaygerard.com

Miracle Austin, www.miracleaustin.com

Connie Peck, conniepeck.wordpress.com

 

 

Author-go-Round: Tracy Lawson

003(48)Hi! I’m Tracy Lawson, and I’m so excited to be featured on Week 2 of this Author Interview-go-Round! I’m the author of Counteract and Resist, the first two volumes of the YA dystopian Resistance Series. Ignite, the third book in the series, is slated for release in summer 2016!

Here’s a quick summary of the series so far:

The Resistance Series takes place in a near-future version of the United States. The powerful Office of Civilian Safety and Defense has enacted a long list of Civilian Restrictions designed to keep the people safe from frequent terrorist attacks, but it hasn’t worked: as the story opens, the threat of a chemical weapons attack is literally hanging over everyone’s heads.

Careen takes the OCSD’s offered antidote, but the side effects cause her to hallucinate. Her erratic behavior attracts the attention of a young law enforcement officer, who mistakenly pegs her as a dissident. Careen doesn’t realize the antidote is causing her confusion…until she runs out on the day of the anticipated attack.

Tommy, recuperating from injuries sustained in a recent auto accident, is unaware that there’s a link between that accident, which killed his parents, and the chemical weapons attack that threatens him now. When he discovers that working out before he takes his dose of the antidote helps him feel more like himself, he defies the rules to regain his strength and his sanity. On the day of the attack, he meets Careen, who just might be the girl of his dreams, and tries to save her by sharing his last dose of the antidote, even though doing so could potentially hasten his own death.

What Careen and Tommy learn about the true nature of the terrorist threat spurs them to take action; their decisions lead them to run afoul of local law enforcement, team up with an underground resistance group, and ultimately take their quest for the truth to the highest reaches of the United States government.003(35) copy

In Resist, the second volume in the Resistance Series, Tommy and Careen are no longer naïve, frightened teenagers who believe the Office of Civilian Safety and Defense can protect them from terrorist attacks. They’ve discovered the OCSD’s miracle antidote’s true purpose: to create a population bereft of free will, incapable of defying the tyrannical OCSD. They join the Resistance, but on their first mission, things spin out of control and soon they’re on the run, dodging the quadrant marshals in a headlong dash for the Resistance’s secret headquarters.

Being part of the Resistance presents them with new challenges. Not everyone working for change will prove trustworthy, and plans to spark revolution go awry with consequences greater than they could’ve imagined. Tommy and Careen’s relationship is tested when their philosophical differences and the pressures of interpersonal rivalries and jealousy put a strain on their romance. Can they make time for each other while trying to start a revolution?

I love to talk to readers, and I’ve answered some interesting questions at book festivals and school visits. I’d like to share some of them with you:

How did you get the idea for your books? This question can be answered with a question. I was mentoring a friend of my daughter’s when the initial idea for Counteract came about. Chase is a pretty sharp guy and an excellent writer—and when he was in high school I had a lot of fun working with him and editing some of his short stories. We had finished working on a story about baseball, a broken nose, and a broken heart, and were ready to start something new, when he suggested we write scenes in response to the prompt: “What if everyone was on LSD and all thoughts were communal?” It was certainly thought provoking! Chase created the characters Tommy and Eduardo, I created Careen. Right away, we knew we were onto something. The story morphed and changed a lot before it became the finished version of Counteract—but that was how it all began.

What kind of research did you do while writing Counteract? A high school student asked me this question when I visited her English class, and I have to admit I totally fell for it. I responded, “Oh, I did lots of research.” Several people in the class looked surprised, and a few began to giggle. It took a second before I realized they’d asked if I’d tripped on LSD as part of my research, so I quickly qualified my answer. “I totally Googled LSD!” Actually, my browser history might look pretty odd to anyone who didn’t know I was researching a book about a society paralyzed by the fear of terrorism and an oppressive government. I’ve Googled guns, explosives, detonator cord, terrorist attacks, torture methods, and even a floor plan of the Capitol building. Don’t call the NSA on me, okay?

Did you get your ideas from another series? Is this story going to turn into another love triangle like Team Edward and Team Jacob in the Twilight series? When I was writing Counteract, and then Resist, I made every effort to craft a story that was different from the other popular teen books, like Hunger Games, Divergent, and Twilight. I even avoided reading The Hunger Games until I was finished writing Counteract so I wouldn’t be influenced. Love triangles are great devices in fiction, and Careen, my heroine, does attract the attention of two different guys, but it’s not the main focus of the story, and it does have a twist you won’t find in Twilight.

At almost every school visit, someone will ask how I chose the color orange for the CSD antidote in my book. One student noted that CSD is the same color as hallucination-causing drug that was used on Tris in the Divergent series.

At first, I’d envisioned the antidote as red, but when I saw the red liquid in the glass vial, I thought, ‘oh, no—everyone will think it’s vampire blood. This isn’t a vampire story.’ What other color could I choose? I eliminated blue, green, and purple, because cool colors are happy colors. I couldn’t use yellow (that’s when I pause until someone in the class starts to laugh) because it looks like pee. So that left orange, and that worked, because orange means caution and danger. I’d bet Veronica Roth arrived at her orange antidote using a similar process of elimination!

In the first chapter, you say something about Tommy being in an accident. I want to know more. Why didn’t you tell about the accident? This has to be one of the most amazing questions I’ve ever had, because it came from a very bright eight-year-old! My books are geared for ages 12 and up, and I don’t usually get questions from elementary-school children, but Bennett, who is the son of longtime friends, had been reading his older brother’s copy of Counteract before school that morning I visited his combined class of fourth through eighth graders.

I explained, “Bennett, you and I have known each other your whole life. But if we’d just met, and I said, ‘Hi, I’m Tracy Lawson, and I’ve come to speak to your school today. Back when I was born in Cincinnati in nineteen sixty something…’ you’d get bored and tune me out. I shouldn’t try to tell you my whole life story at once. Same with Tommy. I need you to get interested in him, and his immediate situation, before I tell you his backstory. What chapter are you on right now?” Bennett replied he’d just started Chapter 3. “Okay—you’re just about to learn about the accident that killed his parents and put him in the hospital.”

Counteract and Resist are available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble’s online store in both print and ebook editions.

Amazon buy links:

Counteract: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B013ZBPH7Q

Resist: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B013Z7URKM

Barnes & Noble:

Counteract: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/counteract-tracy-lawson/1120081568?ean=9780996610803

Resist: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/resist-tracy-lawson/1122581420?ean=9780996610827

Signed copies are available through Tracy’s website at http://counteractbook.com/lawson-publishing/

The audio book version of Counteract is nearing completion—so look for its release in February!

Want more behind the scenes info and updates about the Resistance Series?

Follow Tracy on

Twitter: @TracySLawson

Facebook: http://facebook.com/TracyLawsonAuthor

Also please visit these awesome authors: 

Eve Connelly, http://www.eveconnelly.wordpress.com

Nina Day Gerard, www.ninadaygerard.com

Miracle Austin, www.miracleaustin.com

Connie Peck, conniepeck.wordpress.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eolyn Character Interview

High Maga 2Today I’m posting a special interview. This is fictional journalist Ian McFae interviewing the characters from High Maga by Karin Rita Gastreich. Enjoy!

Love and Magic in the Highlands of Moehn

An exclusive interview with Maga Eolyn and Adiana of Selkynsen

By Medieval Times correspondent Ian McFae

 Moehn seems an unlikely setting for one of the kingdom’s most ambitious projects. A rough-hewn province, its villages are clusters of earthen homes; its people humble in dress and aspect. Cultivated fields grow haphazardly across rolling hills. Wheat and lentils struggle amongst scattered saplings in a constant battle against the ever-encroaching forest.

Today I’m visiting an Aekelahr, the first community of its kind in over a generation. A half-finished wall marks the perimeter. Inside, small stone buildings house living quarters as well as a herbarium and library. At the center, a young fir tree has begun its reach toward the sky. On the southern side of the complex, insects buzz through a large garden of fruits, vegetables, and fragrant herbs.

My hostess, Maga Eolyn, survived the purges against magas and is often hailed as the last Daughter of Aithne. Her companion, Mistress Adiana, is a talented musician from the province of Selkynsen. You may, perhaps, remember her performances from the days of Mage Corey’s Circle. Though similar in age, Eolyn and Adiana seem very different in disposition. Maga Eolyn comes across as formal and soft spoken, reminiscent of a lynx that prefers the forest deep. Adiana, on the other hand, is restless as a songbird in spring.

MT: Thank you both for hosting me today. I’m going to start with a question that may seem obvious, but that many of our readers could probably use a refresher on: What is a maga?

Eolyn: Thank you for visiting us, Ian. A maga is a woman trained in a tradition of magic unique to Moisehén, first discovered in ancient times by Aithne and Caradoc. We seek to understand the natural world, the spirits of plants, animals, and rocks, and to use that understanding for the betterment of our people.

MT: Sounds noble. Yet not too long ago, the kingdom made a concerted effort to rid itself of everyone who had learned this tradition.

Adiana: Fools will be fools. And kings more so, when given the chance.

Eolyn: When the magas rose up against King Akmael’s father, Kedehen, the consequences were many and brutal. Here we are trying to put that past behind us and create a new future in magic, not only for the young women who have joined our Aekelahr, but for all of Moisehén.

MT: Tell me a little about the women who live here. How do you choose your students?

Eolyn: We accept anyone who comes willingly and demonstrates an aptitude for magic, as well as respect for the traditions and teachings of Aithne and Caradoc. Right now we are a small community: five young girls, Maga Renate, Adiana, and myself. But we hope to grow.

MT: So, Maga Eolyn, you teach magic, but what role does Adiana have? Why bring a musician to the Aekelahr?

Adiana: Aithne and Caradoc, who discovered magic, recognized music as a form of Primitive Magic, the most ancient and complex magic given to our people. It’s true that I was never trained as a maga, but I know music, and I love teaching the girls. This is the one gift that I can offer in support of Eolyn’s effort.

MT: So you left the cosmopolitan city of Selkynsen to settle in this remote and rather backward province. Do you ever miss your home?

Adiana: I miss the wine. There is no better wine than the wine of Selkynsen.

MT: But you don’t regret your choice?

Adiana: Not at all. This is the most wonderful community I’ve ever been a part of, which is saying a lot since I was a musician for Mage Corey’s Circle. And let me tell you, that was amazing! But Eolyn has built a strong family her out of a most unlikely collection of orphans and misfits. We love each other and care for each other. The girls who study with us will one day be some of the most powerful women in the kingdom.

MT: It’s common knowledge that this Aekelahr would not exist without the very generous support of King Akmael. How did you convince the son of Kedehen to finance this endeavor, to even make it legal again for women to practice magic?

Eolyn: My Lord King and I were brought together by very unusual circumstances when we were children. It was on the basis of that friendship that he eventually decided to reverse some of the rulings made by his father.

MT: Friendship. A carefully chosen word. Some would call it love.

Adiana: Well he is in love with her. Madly. No doubt about it.

Eolyn: I cannot speak for the King’s heart, but I can assure you there is no romance between us.

MT: Yet there was romance at one time. Would you deny this?

Eolyn: Of course not. Akmael – I mean, the King – and I were involved for a brief period some years ago, but that ended before he married Queen Taesara. We have not seen each other since.

MT: King Akmael and Queen Taesara are expected to arrive in Moehn in the next few weeks, as part of their summer progress. Any chance of old flames reigniting?

Eolyn: No. Absolutely not.

Adiana: I would say so. Definitely. Yes.

Eolyn: Adiana, please.

Adiana: I’m just saying! Look at her, Ian. What king wouldn’t be in love with this woman? She’s beautiful! And I know she still has feelings for him. You should see how nervous she’s been with all the preparations. It’s driving the rest of us mad.

Eolyn: Perhaps this would be an appropriate moment to bring the interview to a close.

MT: As much as I’d like to delve deeper into this question, we are, I’m afraid, at the end of our time today. I’m certain our readers will be anxious to learn what happens in the coming weeks, Maga Eolyn, when you and King Akmael are reunited.

Readers of Medieval Times, I will be back soon with full coverage of the King’s long-anticipated visit to the province of Moehn. Until then, this is Ian McFae signing off from the highlands and wishing you a most magical day.

Find out more about High Maga here!

 

 

 

High Maga by Karin Rita Gastreic

High Maga 2One of my favorite authors announces something new! Karin Rita Gastreich is the author of Eolyn, one of the most wonderful Young Adult fantasies I’ve read. See my review of Eolyn here. High Maga is the second book in the series and is just as well done. Although it’s already been released, the author has just released an audio book version. Have a long drive to work? An audio book is the perfect companion!

Karin Rita Gastreich is my featured author this month, so stop by every Saturday to read more about her and her book. Can’t get enough? Stop by her blog tour for more excerpts, interviews, and prizes!

Here is a synopsis of High Maga:

Karin Rita Gastreich (author)                   Darla Middlebrook (narrator)

Sisters in magic, Eolyn and Adiana seek to revive a craft once forbidden to women. When war strikes at the heart of the kingdom, their fledgling community of magas is destroyed; its members killed, captured or scattered.

In hopes of defending her people, Eolyn tries to escape the occupied province and deliver to King Akmael a weapon that might secure their victory. Trapped by the invading army, Adiana is taken prisoner and placed at the mercy of the ruthless Prince Mechnes.

Even as their world is torn asunder, Eolyn and Adiana cling to a common dream. Courage and perseverance guide them toward a future where the Daughters of Aithne will flourish in a world set free from the violence of men.

“War propels the book forward, and the characters are at their best when the events engulfing them are at their worst.” –Publishers Weekly

Chapter 13 (excerpt)

 Ghemena awoke cramped and shivering, huddled against Tasha and Catarina. Outside she heard the shouts of men broken by occasional laughter, heavy footsteps and the whinny of horses. Her tongue felt like it was covered with sand, and her arms were numb from being bound. She tried to move her hands, but found a sickly sensation of nothingness where her fingers should have been.

Sitting up, she looked around the bare tent, illuminated by a thin shaft of light streaming through a break in the canvas. Catarina and Tasha slept, bodies curled side by side on the hard dirt floor, faces swollen from the many tears they had shed. With growing dread, Ghemena realized Mistress Adiana was not with them. She shuddered at the memory of Renate’s headless corpse and closed her eyes to shut the image out.

Tasha whimpered and stirred. She lifted her head, tangled dark tresses hanging in her rounded face, and stared with bleary eyes at their grim surroundings before focusing on Ghemena.

“Where’s Mistress Adiana?” she asked.

A painful lump in Ghemena’s throat would not let her speak. She bit her lip, working her arms and wrists against each other, trying to get the blood to return to her fingers.

Tasha moaned and hid her face against Catarina’s shoulder. “This was supposed to be a dream. I was going to wake up, and have it all be a very bad dream.”

“We’ve no time to cry,” Ghemena replied sharply. “We have to get out of here as fast as we can.”

Tasha dragged herself away from Catarina’s sleeping figure and sat up. She pointed to her bound arms with her chin. “How are we supposed to escape tied up like this? And where would we go if we did? You saw the town last night. Nothing’s left of it, and those horrible men are everywhere.”

“I have a way to find Maga Eolyn, but I have to free my hands first.” A burning sensation moved through her palms, followed by the prick of a thousand pins on her fingers. Ghemena knew this was a good sign.

“What way?” asked Tasha.

“A magic way. She showed it to me before she left. I’m going find her and tell her what’s happened, and then she’ll come to rescue you.”

“You mean we can’t go with you?” Tasha’s brow furrowed and she glanced nervously at Catarina. “Don’t leave us alone here. Please.”

Ghemena stopped fidgeting and gave Tasha a worried frown. “I don’t think it’ll work with more than one of us.”

“Why not?”

“Maga Eolyn never said anything about taking more than one person.”

“That doesn’t mean it’s not possible.”

“No,” Ghemena conceded doubtfully. “I guess we can try.”

“Promise me you’ll try, Ghemena.” Tasha’s eyes were wide beneath her dark brows. “Promise me you won’t leave without us.”

Ghemena looked at her friend. Tasha had always been the quiet one, happy in the company of her friends, forever trying to make peace between Ghemena and Catarina.

“We’re sisters,” Ghemena said. “We must be loyal to each other, right?”

Tasha grinned and nodded.

“So you see, I won’t leave you alone. I can’t.”

“How does the spell work?” Tasha asked.

“Well first, I have to get my hands free.” Ghemena scooted around on her rump to show Tasha her back. “Can you see the knots? Maybe you can chew through them.”

Tasha wrinkled her freckled nose. “Chew through them? What kind of an idea is that?”

“Well, I don’t have a knife. Do you?”

“It’d take me days to chew through those chords, and I’d have no teeth left at the end of it.”

“Tasha, just do it. Please.”

Tasha scowled, but she eased over toward Ghemena, then fell heavy on her side behind the girl’s back.

“Ow!” Ghemena winced. “You’re supposed to bite the chords, not my wrists!”

“Well it all looks the same in the dark. Hold still, will you? You’re only making it harder.”

A sudden flood of harsh light interrupted their efforts. Tasha gasped and Ghemena looked up, squinting, at three figures silhouetted in the tent entrance.

“By the graces of Mikata, what is this?” The voice was lilting and feminine. As Ghemena’s eyes adjusted, she saw the slight figure of a woman not much older than Mariel, clothed in a simple rose colored dress. She had fine brown skin and hair the color of wheat, neatly braided and coiled. Her expression was kind, with a knowing smile and soft eyes set in an oval face. “Our little mice are trying to escape!”

Purchase Links:

Amazon (audio book)           Barnes and Noble        Kobo

Blogger Book Fair: Day 5

Welcome to the Blogger Book Fair! For the next five days I will be posting books for you to check out and giveaways for you to enter. Enjoy!

Today I’m featuring author GARRETT ROBINSON

Nightblade

Fantasy | New Adudltbook

Everyone begins their life dreaming of the great person they could become, only to have those hopes battered and broken by the world around them. The world tells them they’re not special. Family convinces them to abandon their goals for the safe route, the sure route.

Loren has been born to cruel parents and raised in an obscure village. She’s long resigned herself to an unremarkable life under the sway of a father who beats her and a mother who sees her only as means to a dowry. Loren’s dreams have almost burnt out—until fate rekindles their spark into a flame that will consume the world.

SOMETIMES ALL WE NEED IS A PUSH.

When Loren meets the fugitive wizard Xain, she dares to hope again. Escaping her village, she finds the nine kingdoms more complicated and dangerous than she could have imagined. But at long last, she’s ready to face the challenge or die in the attempt.

Loren has reclaimed her dreams—this time for good. Armed with only her wit and her courage, she will do anything to become the woman she’s always wanted to be: Nightblade, the most renowned thief in all the land.

Buy Links:

Only $.99!

Amazon | Other Formats

 

Nightblade Special Offer

From November 10th through November 14th, you can pick up Nightblade, the first book of the Nightblade Volumes, for only $0.99 on Kindle! What’s more — if you finish and review Nightblade, I’ll send you a FREE ebook copy of Mystic, the second book in the series! Just fill out the form at http://garrettbrobinson.com/free-mystic.

99 cents and a review — two books. It doesn’t get much better than that.

Interesting Information about Nightblade

The Nightblade Volumes are a WEEKLY serial — I publish a new 10,000 word episode every Friday at 12:00pm PST. Every eight episodes compose one book, which is published as a complete work in ebook and paperback.

Nightblade is the first book in the series. The second book is Mystic. Those who like Nightblade, and want to keep reading, can go review it on Amazon. If they fill out the form at http://garrettbrobinson.com/free-mystic, I’ll send them an ebook copy of Mystic for FREE.

Readers can also subscribe to the series. For ebook enthusiasts, this is THE CHEAPEST way to read! Pay $2.99 a month, and I’ll send you an episode every week — TWO WEEKS before it’s published to Amazon! It’s cheaper than buying the episodes individually, and it’s even cheaper than buying the volumes!

You can check that out at http://garrettbrobinson.com/nb-sub

authorAuthor Bio:

Garrett Robinson was born in Los Angeles, California. Throughout his childhood and into adulthood, he was encouraged to learn by his parents, who not only ensured he had access to thousands of books whenever he wanted, but who traveled with him around the world and helped him do so once he was out in the world on his own. Throughout high school, Garrett excelled in creative writing, churning out millions of words and far surpassing all of his classmates.

After school, Garrett discovered a love of, and has had a budding career in the independent film industry. In today’s digital age, however, he has discoverd that new creative models are necessary to succeed. To that end, he has begun turning all of his film ideas into self-published books, in hopes of drumming up support and readership for the stories he has created.

 

Connect:

Website | Twitter | Facebook

 

Official BBF Giveaways

$50 Amazon Gift Card
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$30 Amazon Gift Card

a Rafflecopter giveaway

$20 Amazon Gift Card
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

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