Friday, November 30, 2018

Song of the Boricua by Olivia Castillo



Today I welcome Olivia Castillo to my blog to talk about her book, "Song of the Boricua" 
The book is set in Puerto Rico, near where I grew up in the Caribbean, so of course I'm interested!

1. Can you tell me a little about yourself, and how you became an author?

Olivia: I am an artist, mom, grandma and entrepreneur. I have always loved books and writing. I decided one day to write a book to leave to my children about their Puerto Rican side.

2. What is your book about?

Olivia: Song of the Boricua is a sweeping, multi-generational story about three generations of women, the conflicts and issues they have being Puerto Rican and American.

3. Who is your hero/heroine? Is he/she based on someone in real life?

Olivia: One of my heroes is my mother. She is a person that never gives up and has gone through many trials and tribulations.

4. What are your favorite times for writing? Morning? Evening?

Olivia: I write mostly at night when everyone is asleep.

5. Who are your favorite authors? Did they influence your writing, and if so, how?

Olivia: Some of my favorite authors are Gabriel Gonzalez Marquiz, Alex Haley, Alice Walker, Margaret Mitchell, and F. Scott Fitzgerald.

They all inspired me, especially telling a story through multiple generations. I loved the history and depth of Alex Haley, and the humor of Gabriel Marquez. I also loved Fitzgerald’s descriptions and dreamy way of writing.

6. Did you have a favorite book as a child? Did it influence your choice to become an author?

Olivia: One of my favorites is, The Velveteen Rabbit, by Margery Williams. The book inspired me to want to be real and understanding, to love you and be real.


Song of the Boricua
by Olivia Castillo

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GENRE:   Fiction

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BLURB:


Puerto Rico an island of contradiction, serves as an enchanting backdrop following three generations of women.

Elena:  Resilient and ambitious, but trapped by duty to her children.
Maria:  Passionate and headstrong, but married to a man she does not love. 
Josephina: Optimistic and romantic, but in love with an alcoholic.
Isabella: Clairvoyant and spiritual, but denies her heritage and roots.

Like the land these women are held hostage, unfulfilled and unable to find their happiness. Each generation like the land is cursed. Can they defy the powerful bond of the curse and free themselves to find love everlasting?

New Author, Olivia Castillo, like the jibaros of the past weaves a tale of sorrow and joy. Castillos' fiction is timely, offering a glimpse into the islands rich history and offering insight into the story that has plagued women for all of time, the search for true love and acceptance of self.

Excerpt:

Josephina
Yauco, Puerto Rico, February 1932
A young man Josephina had never seen was toiling alongside the workers. He had black hair and was very tan. She watched him work and felt an unfamiliar feeling come over her.
It was something she had never experienced before. She heard Marie chuckle beside her. “Il est beau,” Marie said with a knowing little smile.

Josephina’s cheeks turned as bright as a Poinciana flower. 

Mon enfant, he’s like you, an orphan. Le pretre asked if we could hire him. How could I deny him, fille?” Marie asked, shaking her head wearily. “We have nothing, but when our priest speaks, how can we refuse direction from up high?” Marie kissed the rosary she had around her neck and made the sign of the cross. She closed her eyes, fanning herself.

Josephina peeked at him, trying not to be obvious. The young man stood up, wiping the sweat from his brow, and took off his hat. He looked toward the house and spotted Josephina staring at him.

She quickly turned away, embarrassed. Again, with telepathic clarity, Marie spoke gently beside her. “His name is Alejandro. He is such a nice boy. I will introduce you aprés mon somme—after my nap.”

A flushed Josephina quickly protested “Mère, no, you must not.” 

Marie chuckled louder, the wrinkles around her eyes deepening. “Listen to your old mère.
You need to be with people your own age, not us vieux gens, old people.”

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Olivia Castillo is a New York native. After going to the prestigious Fiorello H. Laguardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts, she went on to study graphic design at Otis Parson's College in Los Angeles. Along with being an entrepreneur, she is the mother of three children, and grandmother of two. When not writing or spending time with her family, she travels the world and paints. Song of the Boricua is her first novel.

Author website and blog:  www.oliviacastillo.org
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/songoftheboricua/ 
Twitter: https://twitter.com/oliviacauthor
Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/oliviacauthor/
Buy on Amazon now:  https://amzn.to/2P63Wh9

The book will be on sale for $0.99.

Olivia Castillo will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, November 29, 2018

PARADIGM SHIFT by STK Chan


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. STK Chan will be awarding a $15 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Fighting what we've become.
An ancient dimension of dark echoes from the past.

Lisa and her family barely manage to escape an invasion from the Rebel army in their home of Malta. Shortly after this episode, she discovers Exo, the ancient dimension she cannot understand until her late 20s. Exo is made of memories of the past; it brings forth all the strong echoes we leave behind. Lisa desperately wants to resolve the conflicts of this inner world peacefully, but quickly learns she must fight the shadows in people's hearts, materialized through battle re-enactments, warfare and emotional turmoil.

Enjoy an Excerpt:

Soon the windows revealed smaller buildings and less crowded streets. The train grew emptier too. Lisa heard the monotonous hum of the wheels more clearly; it slowed her heartbeat down to a peaceful pace. In a flash, as she had done many times before, she crossed into what she believed to be a dreaming state of mind.

A dense forest surrounded her. It was cold, and patches of snow covered the ground.

It feels so real… But I wanted a nice view of wild, untamed mountains. And a waterfall. And why can’t I better control the season or the clothes I’m wearing? Lisa wondered, shivering a little. There! She finally spotted an exit from the curtain of trees.

Below, a large lake covered with floating sheets of ice lay at her feet. She was indeed on a mountain. The fresh air was freezing, but she breathed it in eagerly, ignoring the abundant vapors of her warm breath.

What could this resemble? Canada? Alaska? Lisa had learned that, by focusing very deeply with closed eyes, she could sometimes change her clothing or some of the details around her.

This time, only a long scarf appeared on her shoulders after she opened her eyes. “Not enough,” she said, shivering, but proceeded to walk along the cliff regardless. Minutes later, she stopped to take a better look into the distance. A boat? I don’t want to come across any other people this time...Ah, it’s just a log. She could not stand the cold any longer, so she thought about getting back.

Greg raised an eyebrow when he noticed her repeated blinking.

“Your lucid dreams again?”

Lisa nodded in confession.

“Where did you go this time?”

“Far…far from these many babylons.”

“Just another reason why we are a perfect match.” He smiled.

“They are so real. And they feel so long, though they really last just a fraction of a second.”

“Do you meet any people in there?”

“Yes, but I avoid them. It scares me to death how intense and unpredictable they are. Last week I met a tribe in Africa and before that I was in the middle of a medieval city.”

“Lucky you,” said Greg. “It’s a strange yet blissful anomaly, to escape reality like that.”

About the Author:
A fan of nourishing SF&F fiction. Seeker of essential truths in historical non-fiction. Exploring life for almost half a century. Delivering action and matters of the inner self. "Chan has license to be more philosophical and issue-oriented, and on the whole he blends together different genres well." (John Staughton, SPR)

Website: http://stkchan.com/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18365677.S_T_K_Chan

The book is $0.99 during the tour.

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/PARADIGM-SHIFT-Future-comes-behind-ebook/dp/B07GVNH3GQ
Other book venues: http://stkchan.com/#shortcode-88edda7ce3603c2b9a964b5f0f2b8d1e

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

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Alien Exchange by Keri Kruspe


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Aimee Gwiazdowski has a passion for Alien Abduction romance stories. She vicariously lives through the heroines of her books to escape her lonely, loveless life. Until one morning, she wakes up in a strange, white room where an alluring voice invites her to the “Exchange” to find love and adventure in another world. Did she dare believe it? Could she leave everything behind and take a chance to become one of those heroines who finds true love among the stars?

Exiled Prince Qayyum E’etu and commander of the space vessel StarChance has a mission—transport the human women to the Exchange along with an offer he can’t refuse: find evidence against rumored human trafficking connected with the Exchange. If he can successfully bring the traitors back to Zerin for justice, it would give him a chance to return home. How was he supposed to know that meeting a human woman would put everything he was working for in jeopardy?

As unforeseen evil slowly brews discord within the galaxy, it works to tear Aimee and Qay further apart. If they don’t learn to overcome their fears and trust the love they have for each other, the coming cataclysm will devastate not only Zerin, but Earth as well.

An Alien Exchange is the first book in a sci-fi romance that features intergalactic action, engrossing plots, and courageous individuals. If you like fast-paced action, raw emotions, and sexy aliens, you’ll love this new space adventure.

Dedication

I dedicate this book to those who are alone in a crowd. To those who are desperately trying to right a wrong they’ve done in the past. Sometimes taking a chance may seem crazy, but you’ll never know until you try.

Read an Excerpt

Star struck, she gawked at him with her mouth open. Any preconceived notion she had about masculine beauty changed. His overt, exceptional maleness matched the images she’s conjured while reading her sci-fi romances.

His skin was a light russet brown nestled by a pearlescent sheen. Hair black as midnight layered with strands of cobalt blue reflected when he moved. A subtle widow’s peak crowned a smooth, wide forehead. A tiny intricate braid at his right temple ended in a long curl at the front of his crotch, framing his manhood. Pulled hair bared ears larger than a human’s, the tips ending in a slight point. A small gold hoop pierced the left tip, twinkling as it danced and teased in the light. Aimee’s lips moistened as she envisioned savoring the combination of warm flesh and cool steel.

She took in his matching black eyebrows. They rose up and down like an upside down V over his almond-shaped eyes framed by a set of thick lashes. Instead of black, his pupils were a dark iridescent green, oval-shaped and surrounded by a ring of dual color. The first ring was a dark emerald with the outer ring a contrasting shade of lighter green. His full lips parted in a patronizing smile and displayed small fangs where human eyeteeth were.

He pulled his arms away from his chest and she noticed he had three fingers on each hand instead of four. Those fingers were long and thick, one digit not any shorter or smaller than another— his thumbs no different than a human.

She sighed, trying to picture how many toes he had.

“Satisfied?” His amused accented tone left no doubt he was making fun of her. “Believe in aliens now?”

About the Author:
“Author of otherworldly romantic adventures”

A writer since the age of twelve, Keri Kruspe has always been fascinated with otherworldly stories that end with the dream of Happily Ever After.

A native Nevadan, Keri resides with her family in the wilds of Northwest Michigan where she enjoys the stark change in seasons and the pleasures each one brings. An avid reader, Keri loves an enjoyable bottle of red wine, a variety of delicious foods and watching action/adventure movies…usually at the same time. You can find her most days immersed in her fantasy world on her latest novel while foot tappin’ to classic rock. When not absorbed in her writing, Keri works alongside her husband in building their dream home or discovering intelligent life in America in their RV.

Why I wrote this book

I was reading one of my favorite Sci-fi romances on my electronic reader after watching the latest’s news about computer hacking. It got me thinking…what if aliens hacked into my reading habits to find someone like me who liked alien romances. Wouldn’t that be a perfect way to find women who might be willing to leaving Earth to find love among the stars…

I envisioned Star Wars meets Pretty women. And that, they say, was that. My story “An Alien Exchange” was born.

The book is on sale for $0.99 during the tour.

Buy An Alien Exchange to experience the first installment of this exciting trilogy!

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Alien-Exchange-Trilogy-Book-ebook/dp/B07JDRH6GR/ref=sr_1_1
Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/an-alien-exchange-keri-kruspe/1129746931
Apple: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/an-alien-exchange/id1438985680
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/an-alien-exchange

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/klkruspe15
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/lakezipper77/
https://www.kerikruspe.com/
https://twitter.com/authorkkruspe
https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/26000075-keri-kruspe

 Keri Kruspe will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

String of Pearls by E. D. Parr



Thank you for inviting me to your blog today with new release MM romance,
String of Pearls

The story is set in the same SciFi fantasy city as last year’s release, The Dreamboat.
Indigo Vaughn, the warlock head of security, features in the story along with a new cast of characters. When I wrote The Dreamboat, I already had the new characters in my head along with their story. Tobias Mars and Dante Pepper, the elite space pilots for the royal court, very nearly made an appearance in The Dreamboat, but because that story is about Indigo at last finding love, I decided they needed their own story.
Once upon a time Dante and Tobias were close to becoming lovers, but Dante met Viridian and fell in love. Tobias has yet to meet his love when String of Pearls, opens. He’s a man of high integrity, handsome, caring, but also longing for love and sex. String of Pearls is his love story.

Blurb
Handsome, elite space pilot, Tobias Mars is completing a special mission, when on a water planet, recently ravaged by space pirates, he discovers Dreft Hann hiding and injured in the sand dunes.
There’s instant attraction between the two men, but honorable Tobias believes the fact Dreft is in his care precludes him from showing his growing love for the young man. What’s worse is his shocking discovery of Dreft’s real identity. Even so, Tobias can’t deny his feelings for Dreft.
When head of royal security, powerful warlock, Indigo Vaughn discovers Dreft’s secret, he anticipates trouble.
As beautiful Dreft falls in love with Tobias and dreams of joining the elite pilot squad, trouble is brewing from someone in Dreft’s past.
Will love finally win with so many obstacles in Tobias and Dreft’s path?

Warning, the book contains MM sex, MMM sex, gay anal sex, MM oral sex

BUY the book
On special new release discount price only on the Evernight Publishing website

Read an excerpt
Tobias Mars gazed at Dreft lying on top of the bed in room ten of the infirmary. Hari’s treatment had worked wonders and not only on Dreft’s wounds. Hari had cleaned Dreft up. His hair, now a dirt-free glossy hazelnut brown was brushed back to show off the handsome planes of his face. Hari had replaced Dreft’s strange boy-like clothes with the infirmary’s grey cotton pants and t-shirt. The man was, as his colleague, Dante, put it, deliciously pretty. For a fleeting moment, Tobias wondered what it would be like to kiss those perfect lips and hold that muscular body to his own. He shook the thought away.

Dreft opened his eyes and a shy smile spread on his mouth. As Tobias neared him, he shuffled up the bed to sit. “Thank you so much for helping me, sir.”
Tobias pulled a chair beside the bed and sat. “My name’s Tobias, Tobias Mars—no need to call me sir. How are you feeling?”

The handsome man’s eyes held gratitude. “I’m so much better. Thank you. I noticed the insignia on your jacket, sir.”

Tobias grinned as his fingers went to trace the gold and blue embroidered crest. “I’m one of the queen’s pilot explorers. I guess you could call us the elite unit. All the same, call me Tobias. I’d like that.”

“I’ve heard that you have to be aristocracy to be chosen for the unit. Is that true?”

A little frown creased between Tobias’s eyes. “Have you? Where’d you hear that?” A spike of worry prevented him from answering with the truth. His intense security training from the warlock, Indigo Vaughn, threw a question into his mind. Could Dreft be a rival court’s spy or even assassin?

“Sorry. I mean no harm. I heard a lot of things during my years as a slave.” Dreft’s voice held anxiety. His blue eyes clouded.

Witnessing Dreft’s unease, a wave of kindness softened Tobias’s look and tone. “How long were you a slave?” He remembered Hari’s description of the scars on Dreft’s back.

Sadness passed in Dreft’s eyes. “Five years—I’ve been a slave since I was stolen from my home when I was eighteen. I, I’d become desperate, hence the leap from the ship when we cruised reasonably low to take water from the lake on the planet where you rescued me.” His voice cracked a little.

Tobias watched fear replace the sadness in the young man’s eyes. He wanted to lighten the mood. “Hey, are you hungry? I bet Hari hasn’t given you breakfast and I’ve not eaten yet. Do you feel up to a little walk? My home isn’t far. I have loads of food—fruit, pancakes, savory pastries, and coffee. What do you say?”

Dreft gave him the most endearing look. “I’m very hungry.”

Tobias stood and pushed the chair away from the bed. He held out his arm for Dreft to take and helped him stand. “Hang on. You have no shoes.” Tobias left Dreft perched on the side of the bed. He went to the closet inset at the end of the wall and brought back a pair of felt slip-ons for Dreft.

Dreft pushed his feet into them. “Thank you. I think the medicA threw away what I was wearing.”

“Hari is the best medicA available. I trust him implicitly, but he’s a hygiene fanatic. He probably burned what you were dressed in.” Tobias laughed. “Can you manage or will you take my arm. It’s a gesture of support.”

Dreft’s gaze raked Tobias’s face and he smiled softly. “I know the clothes you found me in probably gave you the impression I’m a pirate’s plaything. I’d like to explain—”

“You don’t need to—” Tobias hurried to assure Dreft.

“I want to.” He held Tobias’s arm.

“After you’ve eaten, then.” Tobias led the way from the room, along the corridor and out of the infirmary door. His villa was two doors down from Dante’s and he walked slowly favoring Dreft’s halting steps.

“I’m limping but Hari said my legs were only bruised under the abrasions. Sorry. I didn’t expect them to hurt so much. My ribs don’t and they were broken.”

“Hari fixed your ribs and administered slow release pain reliever at the site. He fixed your abrasions somewhat, but it’s good to heal naturally where possible. He wants you to rest.” A smile sprang to Tobias’s lips. “If he sees us, he’ll probably say to me, ‘Sir, you got Dreft Hann up too soon.’”

©E.D. Parr, Evernight Publishing, 2018

Find E.D. Parr



Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Denying the Alpha - Anthology

 

*Available now!*

Denying The Alpha

Some happily-ever-afters take more effort than others...
The strong alpha heroes in our anthology are determined to claim their mates—but their women are anything but submissive. They'll have to work twice as hard to get what they want. It'll be a power struggle as the alphas and their women learn that the volatile energy between them is the beginning of something wonderful. These nine hand-picked stories are hot enough to curl your toes. Get ready to fall in love with an alpha.  

Purchase Links:

 

Blurb from " Bearly Caught" by Sarah Marsh, one of the stories in the anthology:

Daniella Holt needed to get away from a controlling ex that wouldn’t take no for an answer, she thought that a few weeks in Hillion Falls renovating her Aunt’s house before she could sell it would be just the ticket. But there’s something odd about the small community that she can’t quite put her finger on and the handsome town mayor she runs into is definitely a distraction that she doesn’t need. Emmett Greyson is the pack Alpha of Hillion Falls and things usually come fairly easy for him. Until he meets the niece of one of his former pack members and she has his bear all tied up in knots. Unfortunately, Dani doesn’t seem to be like any other woman he’s met before, and if he thinks it’s going to be easy to get her attention or her trust—he’d better think again. When Dani ends up hurt they’re all in for a surprise no one could have anticipated, but will the crazy changes happening in her life drive her back to the man she didn’t want, or will Emmett find a way to catch Dani’s skittish heart once and for all?  

Monday, November 26, 2018

Cover reveal! WRAITH by Harley Wylde




Publisher: Changeling Press
Cover Artist: Bryan Keller
Genres/Themes: Contemporary, Christmas, MC Romance,
New Adult, Silver Fox
Rin — My mom died when I was little, and my dad followed when I was fifteen. My half-brother, the nastiest human being I’ve ever met, convinced people to grant him custody. More likely he bribed people. My life has been hell since then. Every time I try to run, he finds me, tortures me, and makes sure I toe the line. This time will be different. I’m asking the Dixie Reapers for help. If they turn me away, I’m as good as dead, but even that’s preferable to what my half-brother has planned for me next.
I didn’t count on the sexy man with the dark, brooding eyes. The man who defended me only seconds after laying eyes on me. The man who makes me want things I’ve wanted before. I knew better than to sleep with him, knew I wasn’t good enough. When he rejects me, I run. Discovering several weeks later that he left a little part of himself inside of me is even more terrifying than my half-brother finding me.
Wraith — I’m not the settling down type. Maybe once upon a time, but not anymore. While I was serving overseas, my sister was left for dead in a gutter. I failed her. Failed my parents, who made me promise to protect her before they breathed their last. Now I’m faced with Rin, the strongest, most beautiful woman I’ve ever met. She needs a protector, and I’ll gladly be that for her. I want her. Want to keep her and make her mine. I’ve fucked my share of women over the years, but I’ve never made love to one. Until her. But I’m no good for her, or anyone else. She thinks she’s not worthy of me, but it’s the other way around. Then she runs and I feel like a piece of my soul has been ripped out. Finding her won’t be easy, but I won’t stop until she’s back in my home, in my bed. And I’ll make sure that every asshole who ever laid a hand on her is buried six feet under or rotting in prison. No one will ever hurt her again.
It never occurred to me that I would be the asshole to hurt her. I stopped believing in Christmas miracles a long time ago, but now I really need one. I need Rin back, and I’ll do anything to make her mine.
Warning: Bondage. Spanking. Anal sex. Over the top, melt your e-reader, make your panties wet sex. If you don’t like those things, this book probably isn’t for you.
Coming November 30th to Changeling Press
and December 7th to online retailers

Check out Harley’s books at harleywylde.com!
Harley is the international bestselling author of the Dixie Reapers and Devil’s Boneyard series. She believes in writing over the top hot romances with older men and younger women. If you want alpha heroes who take what they want, and protect the women they love, then you’ve come to the right place!

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Longevity - The Wardens of Time by Caleb Smith


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Caleb Smith will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Noah Thomas is a scrawny seventh grader who is bullied to the brink in his new town. Friendless, except for sassy tomboy Wendy Sherman, who seems to lend him the confidence he needs to stand up to his oppressors. Upon stumbling into a bookshop one afternoon while on the run from some teenaged tyrants, Noah is hurled into an unexplainable adventure. Noah learns that the bookshop does, in fact, lead to the Akashic Records – a place that holds all spirit lives recorded in tablets of light. With this new found knowledge, Noah begins to grow in wisdom and confidence to face his fears. His biggest challenge comes in the form of five demonic spirits that he accidentally lets loose from a lost tablet. Will Noah succeed with the help of his guardian angel cat he calls Keeper, or will all Hell's henchman prevail?

"A spiritual thriller that skillfully celebrates determination and self-discipline - Kirkus Reviews "

Read an Excerpt:

They reached the side of the building from which Noah’s room could easily be seen, and the twins walked through the exterior wall, making themselves visible. Noah was knocked unconscious and appeared lying on the floor, wedged against debris and a corner wall space. The book was on the floor, alive and open, shaking wildly, while the magic of dark energies poured from its depths. There was a flow of freed evil creatures clawing out through the window and into the night air. Enoch scooped the book up and slammed it shut; great, heavy iron doors locking into place.

About the Author:
Caleb Smith an author from Bangor Maine, holds a passion for nature, spiritual study, family, poetry, art, strength training and golf. Honesty, simplicity and a hard work ethic are the best things that shape his day.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/calebsmithauthor
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/calebsmith
Publisher: http://www.blackrosewriting.com
Book Video: https://youtu.be/FmlGJqQ-t4Y
Goodreads Giveaway: https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/284681-longevity-the-wardens-of-time

Buy Links:

https://www.amazon.com/Longevity-Wardens-Time-Caleb-Smith/dp/1684331382
https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/longevity-caleb-smith/1129584642
http://www.blackrosewriting.com/childrens-booksya/longevity

Caleb Smith will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, November 19, 2018

History, books, and gifts



I'm pleased to welcome historical author Tom Williams to talk about his books. And soon, "'tis the season to be jolly", as they say, and if you're looking for a gift do consider books - a series of historical novels for your history buff - inexpensive and impressive - what more can you ask for? :-)

Christmas is coming and already the Sunday newspapers are full of supplements about the books that you could give as Christmas gifts.

As somebody published by a smaller press – Endeavour Media – I'm very aware that my books aren’t about to feature in The Sunday Times, but Jennifer Macaire has kindly offered me a showcase almost as good as that newspaper by letting me talk about my books on her blog.

cawnpore

There are six books altogether, three about the Napoleonic-era spy James Burke, and three rather more serious ones set in the mid-19th century at the high watermark of Empire. I'd love to talk about them all, but I've chosen just one – my favourite, Cawnpore.

Although Cawnpore is the second of my books to be narrated by the fictional John Williamson, everything I have written stands alone, so you can enjoy it even if you haven't read any of the others.

Cawnpore is a story about the Indian Mutiny (or First Indian War of Independence). When I wrote it, I thought everybody would understand that it was going to be a tragedy because when I was a child we were still taught about Cawnpore (now called Kanpur) at school. It was one of the most famous massacres of the British Empire – by which I mean a massacre in which local people were killing the British, rather than the other way about. It turns out that nowadays people are blissfully unaware of the implications of the title, so some of them seem to have been taken aback when, essentially, everybody dies. That may be a spoiler, but the way things work out in the book was never intended to be a surprise. The story is closely based on an actual historical event and “everybody dies” is what this historical event was all about.

What intrigued me about Cawnpore was that the horror seems to have arisen from the structural problems of colonialism. The British at Cawnpore were not generally bad people and the leaders of the Mutiny were not, by and large, the monsters that they were later represented as. The events that led to slaughter on a horrific scale, carried out across India by both Indians and Europeans, seem to have been the inevitable result of a clash of cultures. Certainly the British did exploit India economically, but Indian rulers had exploited their populations for centuries without rousing the people to revolt. When the British had first arrived in India, they had shown a lot of respect for native customs and culture, but, over time, muscular Christianity and the growing self-confidence of the British in their natural “right to rule” led to increasing contempt for the Indian way of life. Even what the British saw as positive steps, such as the banning of suttee (widow burning), were resented when they showed contempt for ancient customs.

I invented John Williamson because I needed a narrator for my first book, The White Rajah. The real White Rajah, James Brooke, had an interpreter called John Williamson so I stole the name and job and then invented a character who was close to James Brooke and could tell us his story. When I wanted to set a novel in the Indian Mutiny, Williamsonseemed the ideal person to tell this story. Although he was part of the machinery of Empire, he was himself an outsider. He was a  homosexual with working class origins and he was never going to be truly comfortable with the men who ruled India. In fact, his only true friend was an Indian, a prince in the court of Nana Sahib, the man who would eventually lead the Indians at the massacre of Cawnpore. Williamson therefore sees both sides of the conflict, sympathising with each in turn, desperate to stop the killing but, in the end, doomed to see the tragedy unfold without being able to prevent the atrocities of Indians and Europeans.



toim


It’s not a cheerful book. Most of the characters are real people and the events follow very closely on the historical facts, but the story really centres on Williamson. We see India and the events of the Mutiny through his eyes and I felt I grew to know him. It’s also an amazing story, for which I can take very little credit, because the story is the one history wrote for me. The Indian Mutiny was a war where the personalities of individual leaders made a huge difference to the outcome. People decided their loyalties based as much on their evaluation of the personal worth of the protagonists as on race or creed. It was a time of deeds of great military valour and courage and, on both sides, a time of appalling cruelty and mass killings. It was, indeed, a clash of civilisations. It ended the rule of the East India Company, which had run India as a private fiefdom, and initiated the period of Imperial rule and the Raj. It also, though no one could have known it at the time, started India on the road to eventual independence and the end of the princely states. It is one of the great stories of the 19th century and, with Cawnpore I’ve tried to capture something of that story.

I hope you read it. Let me know what you think.

Important bit

Cawnpore is available in paperback or as an e-book. The paperback is a ridiculously cheap £5.99, putting it at stocking-filler prices when it comes to Christmas gifts.
The paperback has a different (and rather lovely) cover in the US, where it is distributed by Simon & Schuster.

Keep in touch

Cawnpore
I blog, mainly about history but other things too – like tango . Have a look at http://tomwilliamsauthor.co.uk/blog/
There’s a Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AuthorTomWilliams/
I tweet as @TomCW99.
If you want to contact me directly, you can email me at tom@tomwilliamsauthor.co.uk

Finally

A huge ‘thank you’ to Jennifer Macaire for giving me space to talk about one of my books

Friday, November 16, 2018

Behind the Iron Cross by Nicole Cameron

BEHIND THE IRON CROSS by NICOLA CAMERON


Hello, and thanks so much for having me on today! While Behind the Iron Cross is my tenth
romance novel to be published, it was actually the first one I ever wrote. I started it in 2012,
picking at it in fits and starts while working on my other books, and finally finished it in 2018.
In hindsight this is a good thing because I needed some serious novel writing chops, far more than
I had in 2012, to pull this story off properly. The experience I’ve gained in the last six years is
what made this book possible, and I’m very happy that it’s now available to readers.

Also, it means that my editor will stop nagging me to finish it. (Love you, Theresa!)




In the hedonistic wonderland of Cabaret-era Berlin…
                                     …where money can buy you anything you desire…
                                     …and love comes with a pink rose and a practiced smile…

The year is 1923, the Great War is over, and Berlin has become the manic playground of Europe’s elite. Against a glittering background of nightclubs and hot jazz, a sensual American heiress, a wounded playboy, and a desperate German army officer forge a decadent pact of pleasure. But their nights of uninhibited passion soon lead to a forbidden emotional connection, one that will threaten their future … and their lives.

Excerpt available here.
  • Historical Romance, Erotic Romance, MMF
  • Word Count: 105,000
  • Heat Level 4
  • Published By: Belaurient Press

Where to Buy


Excerpt

Katherine Tracy took a deep drag of her cigarette, letting the smoke trickle out slowly
through her nostrils. It had been a long day of business meetings with a German manufacturing
company eager to repair its war-damaged finances by partnering with her Uncle William’s
company, Tracy Electric. She’d done her job as the company’s duly designated
representative, and now she wanted some entertainment.
Although she was starting to doubt they’d find it at the Cupid Club. “Darling, I’m bored,” she
said to the handsome man sitting at her side. “I thought we were going somewhere amusing.”
Sam Harrison gave her a lazy smile. “We’ve only been here for a few minutes, sweetheart.
Give the talent a chance to circulate.”
She glanced around the room, wondering if he was right. The club was dark and smoky, the
dim light hiding the cherub-heavy decor and prompting the customers to focus on the stage
where a redheaded singer in a long silver gown was crooning, “Just a Girl That Men Forget.”
The fact that the singer was a husky contralto and her Adam’s apple could be seen under
the diamanté choker she wore was part of the club’s louche charm, Kat assumed.
It was a reminder that Berlin was a world away from Bridgeport, Connecticut, in more ways
than one. The aftermath of the Great War had wreaked economic havoc on Europe, and a
conquered Germany was the hardest hit of the countries on the losing side. With the
abdication of Kaiser Wilhelm II and an economy in ruins due to catastrophic war reparations,
Germany had struggled to put together its first democratically elected government, the
Weimar Republic, under the leadership of Friedrich Ebert.
By 1922, the new parliament had their hands full trying to rein in a galloping hyperinflation,
all while dealing with political and military uprisings throughout the country. Staid Prussian
social mores were abandoned as quaint holdovers of a bygone age, and the urban centers
of the country developed a more freewheeling mindset. Berlin in particular had given up any
attempts at censorship under the Republic. It was the cuckoo’s egg in the nest of the German
Reich, and musicians, artists, and writers flocked there, eager to enjoy this mad new freedom.
They weren’t alone; philosophers and scientists also rushed to study the fascinating social
experiment that was Berlin.
That was the bright aspect of the city. On its darker side, Berlin had become a hunting ground
for those with money and a taste for more sordid pleasures. Here, avid partiers could listen to
the hottest jazz, indulge in their drug of choice, and have any kind of sex they craved.
Especially if it was the kind of sex that was illegal at home. As Kat finished her champagne,
a handsome young waiter dressed in a brief drape of white fabric and nothing else appeared
at the table. Plucking the waiting bottle from its stand, he poured more of the sparkling wine
into her glass, leaning over to show off a muscled back and a firm, rounded ass. From the
corner of her eye, she noticed Sam’s admiration of the fit male flesh on display.
The waiter also noticed this and made sure to brush against Sam’s arm as he sashayed away
from the table. Amused, she saluted her fiancé with her glass. “He’s certainly pretty.”
Sam rolled his eyes. “And probably carrying every social disease known to mankind.
Besides, I know the type. He’d run screaming the moment you pulled out the ropes.”
“Not if I gagged him first.”





Thursday, November 15, 2018

The Storm in our Chests by Enrique Betancourt


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Enrique Betancourt will be awarding a $10 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

After being separated abruptly, best friends Benj and Élan reunite after five years. They are not children anymore, and teenage and experience changed them.

Benj used to be an isolated antisocial child, now he’s popular and outgoing, leaving for college in the following year.

Élan used to be chipper, now he’s sad and insecure after years of being tossed around the foster system and realizing he is gay, crushing on a boy he thinks is unattainable.

Their reunion proves to be a challenge as they are the polar opposites of how they knew each other, the journey to healing and proves to be tough. Bonding again may be the only thing that saves them. Through small moments and swift dramatic turns, Benj and Élan will have to prove they are more than friends - they are buddies, and the epitome of unconditional love.

Read an Excerpt:

BENJ

“Please! Don’t take my best friend away!”

I remember. Vividly.

It was a scream that tore my vocal cords to shreds as I ran as fast as I could, as far as my young thirteen year old legs could take me. I remember. Sometimes I still dream about it, most times it’s just a repressed memory, sometimes it’s burning in my mind so badly that I have to wake up or else I’d drown in my sleep. I know that I wouldn’t actually drown, but it feels like I would. Can someone actually drown in their sleep? I don’t want to test that theory. Sometimes I’m afraid my mind would decide that it’s had enough and return to that day, that moment. It’s hard to explain, but it’s an intense feeling of helplessness. Of uselessness.

“Please! Please! Don’t take my best friend away!” I hear a beating, the drumming of my heart that threatened to break my ribcage, as I hear myself with a younger prepubescent voice scream against the cold air, watching as they drive away. I try to run faster. I try to save him. I try to be Superman. But I’m not. I can’t reach the car, I can’t reach it as it enters the highway and I see him for the last time. His eyes, tear-filled eyes, against the back window of the car, looking at me. Waiting for me to save him. But I can’t save him.

I’m not Superman. He was.

He was my Superman.

About the Author:
I am the published writer of a novel called THE IMAGINARIUM OF THE INNOCENT by Austin Macauley Publishers, and also I have been awarded the Rosa Maria Porrúa Award for my Spanish-language novella SOBRE LAS CENIZAS. My books stand out for their literacy excellence that got me an award, and the dramatic and emotional way I handle my characters. I am Mexican who lived 6 years in the United States, I love to read, to write and music is such a powerful inspiring force for me.

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7370307.Enrique_A_Betancourt
Twitter: https://twitter.com/enribetan

Purchase Links:

Barnes & Noble (Nook): https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1129696264…
Amazon (Kindle): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07HMNTR63/
Apple Books / iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/…/the-storm-in-our-c…/id1438271505…
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/ww/en/ebook/the-storm-in-our-chests

Enrique Betancourt will be awarding a $10 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. a Rafflecopter giveaway

Smart Bitches Buy Bitcoin by Branden LaNette

  This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions . Branden LaNette will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC ...