Tuesday, February 26, 2013

DIVIDE: Query/blurb critique, anyone?

Hey guys! 


Since I know as well as anyone that a query may eventually become a book blurb (I learned this the hard way with EVER), I really want to get DIVIDE's query to a place where I can be proud of it. 



And if you know me, you know this is a near-impossible task--I despise queries. 


So, check it out, and if you have any critique, please share!! 

Thanks! 


Holland Briggs had everything a seventeen-year-old girl could want—beauty, popularity and more friends than any one girl could need—until her ex-boyfriend’s house was burned down, and all fingers pointed to Holland. When suspicion struck, Holland went from adored Prom Queen to untouchable outcast. Even the social lepers wouldn't be seen with the school’s pyromaniac freak.

Mick Stevenson has been put on this earth for one purpose and one purpose only: to end the curse that has plagued the Briggs family for centuries. To do so, he must fall in love with Holland Briggs—the most recent descendant of The Beast most people have only heard about in fairy tales—break the spell that plagues her, and protect Holland from herself.

Easy.

But when the change in Holland begins way before schedule, Mick is forced to hide Holland in a cabin in the woods, while trying to find a way to beat the curse and save their future generations from facing the same fate. But when love finds them, and the curse remains unbroken, a handsome stranger may be the key to unlocking the truth. Unfortunately, it may be too little too late, and Holland Briggs may become lost to the beast inside her forever.

Sitting at roughly 59,000 words, DIVIDE is a standalone, upper young adult romantic fantasy, told in dual POV, and loosely based on Beauty and the Beast—with a minor Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde twist. 

Friday, February 22, 2013

Lucky Indies! And lucky YOU! A giveaway!!


Well, to kick off the Indie-Licious Awesomeness, we've put together a giveaway that will make three lucky people very happy!


We have a gallery of signed paperbacks, e-books, and swag arranged, and there will be one winner for each category. Check out the prizes, and make sure to check out the authors who were kind enough to donate them!



Prize Package 1 - PAPERBACK LOVE:



Natural Selection (YA Urban Fantasy) – Elizabeth Sharp

Becoming (YA Fantasy) – Raine Thomas

Enlightened - Devyn Dawson

Alaina Downs (NA) – Rebecca Rynecki

Don't Fear the Reaper – Michelle Muto

Beyond the Western Sun & Walk the Red Road (YA Fantasy) - Kristina Circelli

Twisted (YA Romance) – Amity Hope

Wilde's Fire (YA Fantasy) – Krystal Wade

Slow Dance in Purgatory - Amy Sutorius Harmon

The Gathering Darkness (YA Paranormal) - Lisa Collicutt

Sweet Oblivion (YA Fantasy/Romance) - Bailey Ardisone

The Keeper (YA PNR) - Natalie Star-Kroll

Wolf Spell – MR POLISH

Troll Or Derby – Red Tash

Rematch (YA fantasy/romance) - Janine M. Caldwell

Flight - Alyssa Rose

Here – Ella James



Prize Package 2 - E-BOOK LOVE:



Twisted (YA Romance) – Amity Hope

Mother-Earth Series & Knot in Time (YA Adventure Fantasy & SciFi) – Alan Tucker

Devour (YA/NA Paranormal Romance) – Andrea Heltsley

Trust in Me (NA) – Bethany Lopez

Travelers Series (YA Sci-Fi) – Claudia Lefeve

Awaken, Avenge, & Atone – Sarah Ross

Doc, Vampire-Hunting Dog Novella (YA) – Julie Campbell

Barely Alive series (Upper YA Zombie Romance) – Bonnie Paulson

Sweet Oblivion (YA Fantasy/Romance) - Bailey Ardisone

Into the Spiral (YA SciFi/Romance) – Erin Danzer

EVER (YA Paranormal/Romance) – Jessa Russo

Quest & Wildflower (YA Fantasy & YA Historical Romance) – Amy Jones

The Only Exception (NA – eARC!) – Magan Vernon

Morgan Wylie's Debut (YA urban fantasy) – Morgan Wylie

Light of the Moon (YA PNR) - David James Knapp

Dark Seeker and Dark Return (Books 1 & 2 in the Seeker series YA UF) – Taryn Browning

Marked & Changed (YA PNR) - Jennifer Snyder

Zellie Wells Trilogy & Day of Sacrifice (YA PNR & NA UF) - Stacey Wallace Benefiel

Cloud Prophet Trilogy & The Swarm Trilogy (YA High Fantasy) - Megg Jensen






Prize Package 3 - SWAG LOVE:



You may receive pens, posters, cards, stickers, bookmarks, etc. A lot of this will be signed!

Raine Thomas

Devyn Dawson

Rebecca Rynecki

Andrea Heltsley

Krystal Wade

Stacey Wallace Benefiel

Megg Jensen

(NA) Bethany Lopez

Lisa Collicutt

Bonnie Paulson

Bailey Ardisone

Jessa Russo

Amy Jones

Natalie Star-Kroll

Taryn Browning




Thursday, February 21, 2013

OCEAN KILLS by Jade Hart - Review + Bonus Material!

OCEAN KILLS

by 

Jade Hart

*A sexy New Adult thriller*



Around the world, murderers and rapists pick off the innocent. Killing loved ones, separating families, and ruining lives. 

As an eight-year-old girl, Ocean witnessed her family’s massacre and something altered inside her. Twisting her genetic code… unlocking an ability to teleport.

Ocean Breeze was never destined to be normal, especially having been named after air-freshener. She’s a shadow, a ghost—a dark saviour of the innocent. Armed with a switchblade in her bra, and a box-cutter in her pocket, she hunts the filth of the world. 

Callan Bliss is a Sydney police officer whose skill-set is far above that of a normal cop. All his fellow officers see is a hard worker who loves to catch perpetrators and surf, but that’s because they don’t know about his past. When Callan arrests a suspicious-looking prostitute, he comes face-to-face with a self-confessed vigilante, and suddenly, his secrets aren’t so easy to keep silent.

Ocean hates the police with a passion, and has no intention of being held captive by a cop, even if he is sexy as hell. Teleporting from under his nose, Ocean hunts her next target—a man responsible for the largest sex ring in South Africa—and now he’s about to die. But she doesn’t count on Callan giving chase, nor the body-quaking lust that consumes them. However, Ocean's dark hobbies take precedence over what her heart wants—her thirst for murdering is killing her too, and not even Callan can save her.

MY THOUGHTS:
Well, aside from the freaking ending - dammit, Jade! - I LOVED this book! I was so instantly in love with Callan, and so attached to Ocean, that it was impossible not to think of them when I wasn't reading. 

Callan Bliss is a sexy, strong male lead, whose determination and drive when it comes to pursuing Ocean is nothing short of swoon-worthy. Even bordering on stalker-status, I still adored him. He was right to never give up on her, and I cheered him along the entire way!

Ocean Breeze is a troubled, broken character, whose actions throughout the book could be frustrating, and at times I wanted to scream at her for her choices, but she was so lovable and relatable ... even though her situation was unlike anything I should be able to relate to. 

If you love DEXTER (Showtime TV Show), and you love fantasy/paranormal and delectable male leads, you will absolutely love OCEAN KILLS!


A SPECIAL GIFT, JUST FOR YOU GUYS:
I'm so excited to be able to share this with you! 


A sneak preview of Callan’s chapter in OCEAN SLAYS, sequel to OCEAN KILLS. Due for release early 2013. Disclaimer: Unedited version. Copyright Jade Hart 2013
CALLAN
“I want my bloody phone call.” I shouted at no one in particular. I sounded like a fucking parrot—repeating myself over and over since I’d been arrested and brought to the Perth Police Station.
My prison cell was a tiny excuse of space with a metal toilet, no sink, and a plank of wood they called a bed. It was only temporary—my assigned accommodation before I was processed and shuttled off to be denied bail and await a court date.
I'd locked enough men myself into similar cells in Sydney, but at least I never kept the perps cuffed. What was the point in keeping them shackled when they were behind bars?
I grinded my teeth as I tried to shift. My shoulders were sore from the rough handling by the security guard at Adrian Mathieu’s apartment, and my skin rubbed raw where the cuffs irritated me. Plus, I didn't make it any easier on myself by fidgeting and squirming. I couldn't sit still.
I was here because of Ocean. I was arrested for a murder I watched her commit. A murder I did nothing to stop. Was I guilty? An accomplice? By the lines of the law, yes, I was incredibly guilty. I allowed Ocean to bash in an old man's head with a whiskey bottle. But I couldn't agree he didn't deserve it. Karma finally found him and extracted the toll of raping Ocean when she was eight and taking her family from her.
My hands curled behind my back. The metal rings around my wrists jingled as my shoulders tensed. Despite being horrified at watching a murder committed right in front of me, I was happy for her. She’d put some of her ghosts to rest and she needed to do that.
I sighed heavily; my slightly too long hair tickled my forehead. I understood why she killed, and I wanted to believe she was just so caught up in the emotions and horror of what happened to remember to take me with her, but in my soul I knew what she said was true.
She didn't want me.
She'd locked away her heart and no matter how much hammering, cursing, and maneuvers I pulled, I couldn't unlock it without a key. And she didn't have one. I hoped in some corny way perhaps I could be a lock-smith and pick the lock. To force her to admit she needed companionship, love. But I was wrong. And it hurt too deeply to keep prodding at the hole she’d left in my chest. 
My teeth grinded as I glared at the wall. “None of that matters,” I muttered under my breath. None of it mattered because I wasn't interested in a woman who could leave an innocent person to take the rap—to suffer for a crime they didn't commit.
It wasn't fair. It wasn't right. And it showed me more about the darker side of Ocean than I wanted to see. It hurt me deeper than anything she could have done, and made me doubt everything.
I thought she was the perfect one for me. Someone who had secrets but was willing to share with me. It was all a lie and I was done. I couldn’t go through something like that again… hoping… wishing. Only to have those dreams crushed under a glass whiskey bottle.
“Bliss.”
My eyes shot to the officer standing with his arms crossed outside my cell bars. I sat straighter, wincing when the cuffs chaffed raw skin.
“You're allowed your phone call now.”
About bloody time.
I stood awkwardly and shuffled with stiff legs to the bars. The officer nodded at his colleague down the corridor to electronically unlock my cell. A loud beep and the bars slid open. Freedom. Thank bloody heaven.
The officer grabbed my bicep as I stepped past him. “Hey, mate. I don't get it. You worked for the Sydney force. What happened to you in a few short weeks to end up arrested for cold blooded murder?”
Shit. I should have seen this coming. Of course they'd do a background search on my name. Of course it would show my employment history with New South Wales police. “That's none of your business. And I didn't commit the murder. I was at the wrong place, wrong time. That's all.”
“Well, not sure how your old Captain Gray is gonna accept that. He's demanded you to be transferred to the NSW precinct to be filed for charges there. Our superior is fuming as the crime was committed in our jurisdiction. Lucky you, you might serve your sentence closer to family.”
The whole time he talked, he lead me through the finger printing and photo processing room and a small bank of dry-out cells for druggies.
My jaw ached from clenching so hard. Captain Gray knew about this. Could this get any worse? First, I ruin my career. Now, Ocean ruins my life.
“I just want my phone call, okay. Shut your pie-hole.” My voice was dark. I didn't care if that confirmed to him I was a ruthless killer with no remorse or feelings. I was sick to death of this whole mess. My fingers itched to press buttons on the telephone.
“Just making convo, dude. No need to bite my head off,” the officer snapped. “Here. Your five minutes begins now.” He ushered me into a windowless room with a viewing mirror on one wall, a desk, a chair, and a cell phone.
The door started to close behind me.
“Hey! Cuffs, you idiot. How am I supposed to work a phone with my hands behind my back?” My chest heaved. This whole station was run by a bunch of hicks. At least in Sydney the perps were uncuffed in the cells and were given their phone calls within half an hour of processing, not six hours later.
The officer rolled his eyes. “Oh yeah. Turn around.”
I spun and held my wrists out. His hands were slippery with sweat as he fumbled to unlock my shackles. When they were free, I lurched for the table and snatched the cell phone up as if it were the elixir of life. Ocean flickered into my mind as I stared at the black keypad.
How much I wished I had her number so I could call and scream at her. Tell her how much she let me down and shat on all my warm emotions toward her. She stole a piece of me, chewed it up, and left it to rot with the corpse of Adrian Mathieu.
Running a hand through my hair to get rid of those thoughts, I dialed the number I knew by heart.
It answered on the first ring. “Kim speaking.”
“Kim. I'm in jail.”


ABOUT JADE: 
Jade Hart is a self-confessed book worm who is happiest glued to a lap-top with an eternal battery life and typing up stories running rampant in her head.

Her three favorite things are:
1. Unlimited books on an Ebook Reader
2. Cracking the sugar on a creme brulee
3. Bunny rabbits

Jade currently resides in Middle-Earth, but has lived in Australia, England, and Hong Kong.

She writes New Adult 'smexy' fiction. Look for SAMSARA coming soon by Curiosity Quills Press, and the eagerly awaited Ocean Slays - book two of the Ocean Breeze Series. 

If she isn't writing, she's reading. And if she isn't reading, she's travelling. 




LINKS:

JADE:

OCEAN KILLS:  

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

EVADE Character Blog-hop VOTING IS OPEN!


EVADE 
CHARACTER CASTING IS OPEN CLOSED!


As of 8:25Am (pst) on 2/21/13, the winner of the EVADE CHARACTER HOP, with a whopping 19 votes, is .... TREY! 

Congratulations, Connie! 

I will contact you later today! 

Thanks to all who entered and all who voted!  


It's time to reveal our top three choices for who gets to be cast as a side character in EVADE! What great entries you all had!

Our top three choices are as follows, and in NO particular order. Please read the descriptions and vote for your favorite! You have 24 hours to choose the winner! 

I am trusting you to be FAIR. Vote for your favorite only ONE time ... but you can tweet about it, Facebook it, email and call all your friends, whatever! Just try to be fair, please.





ACE, 24, Male

Ace is a soul catcher. He's English, blond hair, grey eyes and 6 feet tall. He likes to pretend he's Toby's cousin to confuse people. He's a cocky, arrogant SOB, and a womanizer which women can't help but swoon all over when he gives them his crooked smile and flirtatious wink.

ANGELICA, 16, Female
"I've been in love with Frankie ever since the night he died. You see, I died the same night Frankie died. Not in a car crash, but I drowned. By the hand of someone I though was my friend. Frankie hasn't met me, yet, nor I him. But we met our fate the same night. Somehow, I feel that connects us, even though Ever doesn't know it. Yet."

TREY, 17, Male
Definitely a good guy! He is a Science and Math genius. And has no filter, so greatly inappropriate and hilarious things come out of his mouth constantly. He also is the most loyal and caring friend anyone could ever have.




Pick your favorite character for EVADE!
  
pollcode.com free polls 


And don't forget about the ... 
PRIZE PACKAGE!!!

Such awesome prizes! Though, I may be a bit biased, I know.

The *winner* will have the exciting honor of having their character immortalized in EVADE, along with signed paperback copies of EVER and EVADE, a signed paperback copy of Krystal Wade's WILDE'S FIRE, Book one of The Darkness Falls trilogy, AND a $20 gift card to AMAZON!
*PLEASE NOTE: There will be a delay in receiving part of the prize package because EVADE has obviously not been released yet.

HUGE thanks to everyone who entered! And a special shout out to my co-judges, Tamara and Krystal! Love you, girls! 


*I reserve the right to alter any entry accordingly, to better fit the story. After all, I am the author and I do still need the story to flow successfully. 
*The winner will have a role in the second book of The EVER Trilogy, titled EVADE, but the character will not be a main character. 
*By participating you give me the rights to use the character you created. 

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

18 THINGS by Jamie Ayres - Tour Stop!

Today I am thrilled to be hosting my friend and pub house sister, Jamie, during her blog tour! 

She recently released her debut novel, 18 THINGS, through Curiosity Quills Press! 

Not only do I get to share the awesome book trailer with you, but I get to show you a deleted scene, AND I'm giving away two copies of 18 THINGS! 

Woohoo!



18 THINGS
by
Jamie Ayres


Can eighteen things save a life? 

Olga Gay Worontzoff thinks her biggest problems are an awful name (after her grandmothers of course) and not attending prom with Conner, her best friend and secret crush since kindergarten. 

Then Conner is killed in a freak boating accident and Olga feels responsible. When she downs an entire bottle of pills to deal with the emotional pain, her parents force her into counseling. There, her therapist writes a prescription in the form of a life list titled 18 Things. Eighteen quests to complete the year of her eighteenth birthday. 

All she has to do is fire-walk, try out for the cheerleading squad, break a world record, and err . . . go on her first date. Good thing Nate, a new hottie in town, enters her life with perfect timing. He brings the fun factor to her list and helps her discover the beauty and strength inside herself, then complicates things by falling in love with her. 

But there's more to Olga’s quests than meets the eye and when her therapist reveals a terrifying secret, her world is shaken. 



There’s only one thing she knows for certain: her choices won’t just affect her future, but all eternity.

THE TRAILER:



BONUS MATERIAL: A DELETED SCENE!
This is straight from the cutting-room floor, you guys! An exclusive sneak peek of a flashback scene that was cut from 18 THINGS!


I’d been sitting at home on a Saturday night, studying hard after receiving my first ‘C’ on a test. Conner walked in sporting his Ray-Ban shades. “Why are you wearing sunglasses at night?” I asked him.
He sat next to me on the edge of my bed. “Why you are in bed at six o’clock on a Saturday is the better question. Your Mom said you’ve been in here all day, studying. We’re here to kidnap you for some breakfast dinner at Dee-Lite Bar and Grill.”
“I’m tired, and I’m definitely not hungry.”
“Tired or not, you aren’t staying here and sulking over a grade that wasn’t even bad.” He lifted the covers. “You’re even in your pajamas?”
Conner reached over to my dresser, pulled open the middle drawer, then threw me a pair of jeans and my favorite pink long-sleeved cotton shirt that said, ‘Live, Love, Dream’ on it.
I untangled myself from my zebra blanket and exited my bed to the left, behind Conner. “Did you say ‘we’re here’ as in other people are waiting?”
Conner fingered the rosary I kept on my dresser. “Sean and Nicole are waiting in the car. They thought your favorite ham and cheese omelet with a side of stuffed hash browns would cheer you up.”
“Fine. Get out so I can change, and I’ll meet you in the living room.”
When I came out a few minutes later, Conner was debating theories on the afterlife with Dad, apparently because of some religious special report playing on the news before a commercial break. I wasn’t in the mood for a religious conversation, so I quickly asked Dad for ten dollars and then Conner and I left.
We took our usual corner booth along the window at Dee-Lite’s, a classic diner set up to resemble the 50’s. The smell of maple syrup and fried potatoes made my stomach roll over with happiness. I guess I was hungry after all.
Caroline, our waitress, walked over with a notepad and pencil in hand but tucked them into her apron when she saw us. “Let me guess. A Cheesy BLT for you.” She pointed at Conner and then at me. “A ham and cheese hamlet with a side of stuffed hash.” Then she nodded toward Nic and Sean. “And Belgian Waffles with fries for the pair of you.”
“You guessed it, Sweet Caroline,” Conner teased. “Good times—”
She waggled her finger at him. “You start singing again, and it’ll be ten minutes before you get your Cokes.”
I covered his mouth with my hand, and he licked it. “You are so gross.”
Disgusting as he was, dinner hit the spot. Still, Conner didn’t like the way I wasn’t laughing at his usual jokes, so he got Sean to stand with him when open mic started and sang Don’t Stop Believin by Journey.
The endorphins of artery-clogging greasy food and Conner’s karaoke kicked in as we made our exit and Conner stopped in the lobby to play the crane game, the machine where you pay fifty cents to claw a stuffed animal.
“Which one do you want?” he asked me.
“Pooh Bear and Roo.”
He raised his bushy eyebrows. “You want me to spend a dollar and win you two?”
I shoved him a little. “Come on. Be a man and splurge.”
Conner got both of them on the first try and handed them over. “Congratulations on being average for once like the rest of us. And if you ever sulk over getting a ‘C’ again I’m holding those animals ransom.”
I stuck my tongue out at him and skipped like a six-year-old down the half block to Grand Haven’s waterfront, one stuffed animal under each arm.
Nic skipped with me toward the boardwalk, and the boys mock-skipped behind us singing the Winnie-the-Pooh theme song. Part of me wondered why Sean and Conner would still remember the theme song to a children’s cartoon, but the other part told me I didn’t want to know.
“I hate to break this to you, but Pooh and his friends aren’t Christians.” Conner pointed to the cross around my neck.
“How do you figure?”
“Well, think about it. Roo must be a bastard since we never see his dad. Pooh is a perv since he’s never wearing any pants. And I’m pretty sure Piglet is as gay as they come as far as fictional childhood characters go,” he argued, teasing but keeping a straight face.
My hand flew to my chest, grasping my cross. “You know, I’ll have to figure out a way to punish you for mocking my Pooh.”
I held my furry friends in my arms to show my unwavering allegiance but felt the familiar ache of wanting to be held or touched by Conner instead. 



TWO GIVEAWAYS!



ABOUT JAMIE:


Jamie Ayres writes young adult paranormal love stories by night and teaches very young adults as a public school teacher by day. When not at home on her laptop or at school, she can often be found at a local book store grabbing random children and reading to them. So far, she has not been arrested for this. She lives in southwest Florida with her prince charming, two children (sometimes three based on how Mr. Ayres is acting), and a basset hound. She spent her youthful summers in Grand Haven, Michigan and this setting provided the inspiration for her debut novel, 18 Things. She really does have grandmothers named Olga and Gay but unlike her heroine, she’s thankfully not named after either one of them. She loves lazy pajama days, the first page of a good book, stupid funny movies, and sharing stories with fantastic people like you.

LINKS:

JAMIE:

18 THINGS:

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Indie-Licious Sunday Teasers Blog-Hop! 2/17/13


Happy Sunday, all!

Its time for The Indie-Licious Sunday Teaser! Here's another snippet from DIVIDE:

His smile was predatory at best, and as he stared at me, I felt goose bumps pop up all over my body.
“Yes, where is Mick? I was wondering that myself just a few moments ago. It’s a shame he’d leave you sleeping here so unprotected like this.” He turned and looked out the window away from me, as if he was just thinking out loud.
He had an accent I couldn’t quite place. But then, I’ve never been very good with that. I guessed England. I didn’t respond to his words, but instead repeated my own unanswered question.
“Who are you?”
“Well, in short, I’m Donovan Gregory. But the long part of it? My favorite part? I’m the guy who’s going to break the spell, love.”