Posted in Dark, Dark Fantasy Romance, Free, Freebie Blitz, YA Fantasy, Young Adult, Young Adult Dark Fantasy, Young Adult Fantasy

The Sixth Gate

 
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The Sixth Gate
by KT Munson


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Genre: YA Dark Fantasy
Series: The Gate; Book 1
 
 

 

 
The interplanetary gates have existed between the five planets and the Netherworld for as long as living memory.
 
Dr. Elisabeth Avery is a woman caught between two worlds. Little does she know that others like her, other half-breeds, are being hunted. When a creature drags a princess into the Netherworld, Elisabeth is determined to save her by any means necessary.
 
Meanwhile, on the planet of Hystera, a Keeper and his assistant investigate a grisly string of suicides and are in need of someone with Elisabeth’s skills. The Gate Guardians and Elisabeth are aware that something is coming and know that it has something to do with the Netherworld bleeding through to the planets, but not why.
 
Will Elisabeth be able to come to terms with who she is in time to face the coming threat?
 

 

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About the Author
 
K.T. Munson is an independent author. First published at 5 years old in the young writers conference, she has pursued writing writing ever since. She maintains a blog that is about writing and her novels. She was born and raised in the last frontier, the great state of Alaska.
 
 

 

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Posted in 99c, 99c Sale, Adult Contemporary Romance, Adult Fiction, Chick Lit, Contemporary, Free, Freebie Blitz, Love, New Adult, Romance

Ignite Series

Title: Ignite Series
Author: Kate Benson
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Editor: Chasing Sophie Publications
Cover Designer: SBenson Designs
 
Blurb:

***This book contains adult material intended for mature readers only***

Some love sets off a spark… Others ignite the flame.

When the athletic Zeke Turner moves in next door to eccentric Addie Greyson, the unlikely pair become instant friends. Growing inseparable over the years, the two stand together through all the trials of adolescence.

Zeke returns for the summer after his freshman year of college right as Addie’s preparing to start hers at another school. Their time apart forces them to begin seeing each other in a whole new light. When the temptation becomes too much to resist, lines are crossed and their friendship is irrevocably changed.

As outside influences interfere, the relationship they’ve fought so hard to protect begins to suffer. When Addie feels the sting of betrayal from the only other person she can trust, it makes her question everything she ever thought she knew.

When fate brings them back together two years later, will they get a second chance? Or will they find out the hard way that there are some things you just can’t take back?

Blurb:
***This book contains adult material intended for mature readers***
Two years after a misunderstanding pulls free-spirited Addison Greyson from tenacious Zeke Turner’s life, fate finds a way to give her back.
Not all reunions are simple, though.
Between a sordid arrangement she made to save her father, the secret she vowed to keep and her twisted new reality, Addie returns to Zeke a different girl.
When their attraction to each other proves too much to deny, they reunite in secret, rekindling their long lost love in the shadows. Their feelings ignite into something more and staying apart is no longer an option.
Fighting to stay together when it seems the whole world wants them apart won’t be easy.
They soon realize it never was.
Will giving into the desires that smolder beneath the surface be the one thing that saves them?
Or will they find out the hard way that some things are best kept secret?
Smolder is the second and final anticipated installment in The Ignite Series. It is full-length and multi-POV.

Kate Benson was raised in Texas and currently resides in central Florida with her husband and their growing army of fur minions.She learned to read at the age of four and has been hooked ever since. She credits her passion for literature to her mother, her love of story-telling to her father and her unwavering faith in happily-ever-after’s to her husband, Sean.Some of her favorite things include rainy days, loud music, superhero movies, hot tea and of course, lazy afternoons with a great book.To find out more about Kate, her work or to just say hello, she loves hearing from her readers and can be found on social media.

Author Links:
Benson’s Book Babes (Fan Club/Readers Group): https://www.facebook.com/groups/PromiseSeriesSupportGroup/
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Posted in #paranormal romance, Adult Paranormal, Free, Freebie Blitz, Paranormal, Paranormal Romance

Resurgence

Title: Resurgence
Author: Sharonlee Holder
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Cover Designer: Strong Image Editing
Publisher: Changing Tides Publishing
Blurb:
It’s been a thousand years since the Fates forced the gods into exile. Now they are preparing for war. A prophesied weapon is sought by both sides.  Eros and the resistance want to use it to win their freedom, while the Fates seek to find it first and destroy it.  Antara is the Tracker Eros needs, and finds herself drawn into a world she never knew existed—with feelings she may not be ready for.
South African, born and bred, Sharonlee Holder lives in one of the outer suburbs of Johannesburg in Gauteng, South Africa.Life is a happy and creative jumble of a husband, three grown daughters, one super cute grand-daughter, three dogs, a cat, and a mouthy African Grey parrot.Endless hours at the keyboard are supported by copious amounts of frothy coffee and ‘What ifs?’. Writing breaks are a blend of the big outdoors astride a motorbike, reading or watching anything and everything to do with fantasy, romance and the paranormal.
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The moon had crested to its zenith. It hung suspended in the sky, closer to dawn than midnight, when Antara opened her eyes. Myth and magic greeted her sleepy gaze through the gap in the floor length curtain drawn to one side.  Ross was out on the balcony, with his hands curled over the railing. His wings were free, bathed in a moon river that painted him silver. Only the tips of his feathers stirred. Rippling like liquid metal under the caress of a subtle pre-dawn breeze.
Her breath caught and stalled in her lungs. It wasn’t so much the sculpted perfection of his physique that did it. Rather, it was the ethereal reminder that the man out there was anything but human. In his rightful form, in an unguarded moment like this where even the moon couldn’t resist touching him, she understood why there were those that had worshipped him as a god.
He must have felt her eyes on him, for he turned and caught her in the blue glow of his gaze. Her blood warmed. Her skin flushed and, for a moment, her mind filled with at least half a dozen erotic things she wanted him to do to her. Then he held out his hand to her.
“Come fly with me.”
Beneath the layers of hedonistic indulgence smoking through his voice, lay a deeper note of gravity that intrigued her.
Naked, she slid out from under the light covering of the sheet, stood, and reached for her robe.
He shook his head. “No. Just as you are.”
She let the silk garment fall to the floor and stepped out onto the balcony wearing only a shy smile. She took his hand. Warm, capable, and elegant fingers laced through hers.
“What if someone sees us?” she whispered.
He smiled, drew her in closer against the hard wall of his body and curled his wings about her. She shivered beneath the sensual brush of feathered tips over her ass and the backs of her thighs.
“Then they will know that you are mine.”
He let go of her hand and wrapped his arms around her. She circled hers about his neck and stared up into his eyes, drifting away in the endless ocean of exquisite blue. The weapon, Hermes, Diana, Apollo, the war they had spoken of… everything melted away until there was only the two of them.
Warmed by his feathered embrace, she became aware of the air cooling her extremities—feet, forearms, and fingers, laced at the nape of his neck. Antara looked down and gasped. No longer were they on the solid balcony running the length of the windowed wall, the penthouse lay far below. Instinctively, she tightened her grip.
“How…?” She looked back up at him to find his gaze hadn’t left her. “Your wings aren’t moving,” she whispered in awe.
“I let go and trust the universe to catch me,” he replied, with the mysteries of antiquity shading his voice.
He held her there for a while, hovered high in the air. Below them, the slumbering neighbourhood spread out a glittering quilt of street lamps and traffic lights. She felt the moment he decided upon movement. It was there in the sudden release of power that surged through the thick slabs of muscle coating his chest, shoulders, and back. His wings unfurled from around her, stretched to their fullest extension, and then swept through the air.
Antara bit her lip and screwed her eyes shut. He laughed. Deep and melodious. The sound of a thousand summer nights spiced with cinnamon, kissed with myrrh and cooled with rain. Forcing her eyes open again, the expression on his face was joy in its purest form. It shone from his pores and lit up his eyes, stretched his grin wide and…melted her insides.
“You love it, don’t you?” she whispered, soaking in the sight of him revelling in the freedom of flight.
His head turned, and his mouth found the side of her neck. Hot breath fanned her skin when he replied, “Flying is best with love in my arms.”
 
Posted in Contemporary, Free, Freebie Blitz, New Adult, New Adult Romance, Romance

Uncovering Officer Smith

Title: Uncovering Officer Smith
Author: Sheena Hutchinson
Genre: New Adult Romance
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR
Blurb: John Smith has been hurt before by a mysterious blonde that tumbles out of his cop car. Since she stomped on his heart, he’s made sure he’ll never feel that way again. He has developed two rules: Never more than one night and never a blonde.
 
The nerdy and conservative Becca Swanson has a plan for her life: college, law school, and rule the world. Nothing and no one will get in her way. That is, until she wakes up in a stranger’s bedroom with no recollection of the night before.
 
This one tumultuous night caused these two to cross paths. Becca is everything John told himself he didn’t need. Smart, sexy, and — blonde. When she becomes the victim of one of his cases he finally can’t deny the connection anymore. Worst of all, he’s beginning to fall harder than ever before.
 
It throws his rules and her plans out the window. Could it have been fate? Or will it become the biggest mistake either of them has ever made?
 
Sheena is a born and raised New Yorker, even her writing can’t hide her hard sarcasm. She claims destiny lead her to writing again. She constantly strives to be a positive role model and write stories that empower and inspire.  
 
Sheena always roots for the underdog, believes in love at first sight, and that everyone should have their happily ever after. While God is currently writing her love story she continues to put all her time into her writing as she is constantly getting new inspiration.
For more on Sheena and her books visit her website www.SheenaHutchinson.com.
 
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Discovering April: https://amzn.to/2sSXwZC
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Becca
 
Meggie and I almost started crying during the pre-game shot, toast. Her parents decided to pull her out of summer classes. This is her last weekend before she has to return home. I don’t know what I’m going to do without her. She almost said the exact same thing during her toast, but we quickly chased it down with some humor. I mean, after all, we’ll be apart for barely two months.
 
When you spend every single day together, two months feels like an eternity. Tonight is going to be a good night. Just my best friend and me – we promised each other a girl’s night. For the first time in my life, I was totally lying.
There are a ton of bars on The Ave. We could have gone to any number of them, and probably should have… but truthfully, I wanted him to see me. Meggie and I saunter up to the bouncer on the patio stairs in our heels and he automatically waves us in. After sharing a glance, we giggle before walking into the flap of the tented patio. The white material billows up into two points above the patio and the light filters through, casting an eerie ambiance. My eyes scan the crowd.
 
Meggie catches my eye. “I don’t see him, Bee.”
 
I look away. “I don’t know who you’re talking about.”
 
She smiles. “You know exactly who I am talk about.” She guides me across the patio to the outside bar, conveniently squeezing in between a pair of guys, and places our drink order.
 
“Oh, excuse me, boys.” Meggie is the queen of striking up conversation. The bartender places the drinks on the bar top and I happen to notice one of the guys reaching for his wallet.
 
“Let me get those for you, doll,” he offers.
 
“Oh, I couldn’t possibly…” Meggie starts and I roll my eyes. She definitely could possibly, and he is totally being played.
 
They exchange a few words before she passes me one of the drinks. She waves to them as we walk away arm in arm.  
 
“I don’t know how you do it.” I giggle in her ear.
 
“Men are suckers.” She wiggles her fingers at a bouncer in the doorway to the back entrance of the club and we slip inside. “It’s almost like they deserve it. You see, Becca, you can let them play you—Or you can play them first.”
 
“That’s no way to be, Meggie.”
 
“That’s the only way to be.” She lifts her drink to her lips and swallows a gulp.
 
My head nods before glancing around, just one more time. John is stationed in his usual spot against the far wall, overlooking the dance floor. His stern glare surveys the area as groups of girls gravitate to the dance floor in front of him. He has a vibe about him that begs to be enjoyed. Tonight, I want to give in. I crave spontaneity and adventure the way a college girl should. But most of all, I want to be that way with him

 
 
Posted in Adult Contemporary Romance, Adult Fiction, Contemporary, Free, Military Romance, Romance, Sale, Series

Healing Danger

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Healing Danger
by Maddie Wade
 
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Genre: Military Romance
Series: A Fortis Security Novel; Book One
 
 
Dealing with the horrific murder of her best friend is more than enough for school tech Lauren Cassidy, but now a madman has decided that she needs to die for her part in that death. With her life in danger and her past catching up to her, will she stay alive along enough to trust the one man she never forgot with her heart?
 
With the promise to catch a killer and keep Lauren safe, Dane Bennet must now protect her from the evil in her past and present. A sick cult group with ties to the government and the rich and powerful are determined to use her powers for their own evil gain. Will Dane be able to protect the woman he loves or will he have his chance at happiness snatched away. Dane must use every ounce of his elite special forces training to keep her safe, even if it means breaking her heart.

 

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Posted in Free, Freebie Blitz, On Sale, Post Apocalyptic, Sci Fi

Broken World

Title: Broken World
Author: Kate L Mary
Genre: Post-Apocalyptic
Blurb:
Follow a group of survivors on a journey that spans eleven books and twenty years as they search for safety in a world overrun by the dead…
When a deadly virus sweeps the country, Vivian sets out for California in hopes of seeing the daughter she gave up for adoption. Then her car breaks down and she’s faced with a choice: give up or accept a ride from redneck brothers, Angus and Axl. Vivian knows getting in the car with strangers is a risk, but with time running out, she’s willing to do whatever it takes to reach her daughter.
The virus is spreading, and by the time the group makes it to California, most of the population has already been wiped out. When the dead start coming back, Vivian and the others realize that no electricity or running water are the least of their concerns. Now Vivian must learn how to be a mom under the most frightening circumstances, cope with Angus’s aggressive mood swings, and sort out her growing attraction to his brooding younger brother, Axl.
While searching for a safe place to go, the group meets a pompous billionaire who may be the answer to all their problems. Trusting him means going into the middle of the Mojave Desert and possibly risking their lives, but with the streets overrun and nowhere else to turn, he might be their only chance for survival…
Kate L. Mary is an award-winning author of New Adult and Young Adult fiction, ranging from Post-apocalyptic tales of the undead, to Speculative Fiction and Contemporary Romance. Her YA book, When We Were Human, was the 2015 Children’s Moonbeam Book Awards Silver Medal Winner for Young Adult Fantasy/Sci-Fi Fiction, and the 2016 Readers’ Favorite Gold Medal Winner for Young Adult Science Fiction.
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Shattered World: https://amzn.to/2Jm14No
 
Movement catches my eye. My heart goes into double time when my head jerks up. There’s a man across the street, walking slowly up the hill. He has his head bowed and he stares at the ground.
“A man,” I say, pointing at him.
Axl looks over and we both stand quietly for a few seconds, just watching him. He’s alone and unarmed, but my heart still pounds. We should just walk away. Leave him alone.
Axl cups his hands around his mouth and shouts, “Hey!”
The man stops and lifts his head, but he doesn’t look around. He just stands there. I hold my breath while we wait for him to respond, to acknowledge us in some way. But he doesn’t. He doesn’t do anything. After a few seconds he starts walking again. The same sluggish pace as before: his head down, his arms slack and swinging at his sides. It’s creepy.
“Guess he don’t want company,” Axl says.
I nod, but something inside me tightens. It makes me think of that man we saw in the field a few days ago. He was walking the same way. Aimless. Defeated. There’s something unnerving about it.
My scalp tingles and the sensation of being watched sweeps over me. “Let’s get back inside.”
We walk into the lobby and both freeze in our tracks at the sight of a woman standing there. She’s wearing a uniform—looks like housekeeping—and stands perfectly still, staring at the ground. She slowly raises her head and I suck in a deep breath. She’s sick. Her face is pale and gray, her skin droops and her eyes are cloudy. She looks awful. Death can’t be too far away.
“Son of a bitch,” Axl mutters, pulling his gun out. His body goes rigid and his hands even shake a little.
“What’s wrong?”
“That’s the maid.”
What does he mean? She’s wearing a uniform; it’s obvious she’s a maid. “What?”
“The maid we took the key from,” he says, stepping back. “She was dead.”
I laugh a little, but it comes out strained and nervous. I can’t process what he’s saying. She’s clearly alive. She’s standing in front of us, staring at us.
“You’re wrong,” I say.
“I ain’t wrong,” he growls, grabbing my arm and trying to pull me back.
I shake him off and take a small step forward. “She’s sick.”
“Vivian, get back!”
I move forward again. “Are you okay? Can we help you?”
She doesn’t talk, but she tilts her head to the side and studies me. A chill runs up my spine, but I ignore it. Axl is freaking me out, but he’s crazy. There’s nothing to worry about.
 
Posted in Adult Contemporary Romance, Adult Fiction, Chick Lit, Contemporary, Free, Freebie Blitz, New Adult, New Adult Romance, Romance

Distraction

Title: Distraction
Author: Angela McPherson
Genre: NA Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Untold Press
Blurb:
Aside from the normal changes in her life, college junior Elle Richards can always count on her friendship with Tristan. The longing for him to love her back is something she keeps well hidden, even from herself. No matter how many miles apart they are, regular phone calls and texts keep them close…until the day everything changes.
Wide Receiver Tristan Daniels has a good thing going. Much to his, and every single woman’s surprise, he’s in a committed relationship. The possibility of going pro looks more than promising…until his spur of the moment transfer to a rival college is approved. Now, Tristan will be forced to be in the presence of the woman he’s secretly loved for as long as he can remember. Elle.
Being away from one another was enough to keep Tristan and Elle distracted, but angst, confusion, and troubled secrets launch them into a breathless, heart pumping story you won’t want to miss!
Recommended for mature audiences 18+ New Adult/College Contemporary Romance
Born and currently residing in Texas, Angela works as a nurse during the day and an author by night. She’s addicted to cleaning, coffee, and fuzzy socks. When not spending time with her husband and their three children, working or writing, she’s reading a good book or listening to music.
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Interception: http://amzn.to/2qqnt3U
Frantically, I searched her face until I reached her wounded eyes, and my insides knotted with uncertainty. I claimed her lips with mine, fitting perfectly together. Her mouth opened, and the salty taste of her tears forced reality into the room. As much as I wanted the kiss to linger, I had to make her understand how much I wanted her, and only her. Reluctantly, I backed away.
“I’ve loved you since we were kids. I wanted it to be me instead of that dick, Mark James, on your first date. I’ve wanted you so fucking bad, but I never told you how I felt because the thought of losing you, even as a friend, terrified me.”
Her green, shock-filled eyes pooled with tears again. I did the only thing I thought would make her believe me. My hand wrapped around the back of her head, fingers weaving through her hair. I inched her closer until I felt her soft lips against mine.
The kiss started in a slow exploration. The moment my tongue met hers, her breath caught and her body shivered. My heart raced like a jackhammer when her fingers spread through my wet hair and the kiss deepened.
Damn she felt good, and tasted even better. Her lips were soft, but eager for more. Her hair felt like smooth silk beneath my hand. I wrapped my other arm around her waist and pulled her tighter against me, only it wasn’t enough. I wanted more.
 
Posted in Free, Freebie Blitz, Mystery, Paranormal Mystery, Paranormal Thriller, Series, Thriller

Lineage

Title: Lineage
Author: J.N. Sheats
Genre: Paranormal Mystery/Thriller
Blurb:
“Cameron, why do you call me dove,” I asked, ready for disappointment.
“Because, you bring my soul peace.”
Joey Morris has spent her young life moving around the country with her constantly absent mother until finally ending up in the small college town of Portstown, Pennsylvania. Here history is thick in the air and Joey discovers that her family has long reaching roots in the town, dating back to the very first settlement. Because of her heritage she is welcomed into the group of the other founding families, and quickly becomes one of the popular girls in school.
After over a year of the good life and Homecoming just days away, Joey is thrown into a terrifying new reality. Happening across a violent black dog with glowing red eyes, and a handsome stranger that puts his life on the line to save her only to stick a gun in her chest moments later.
Now people are dying in Portstown, people close to Joey and she doesn’t understand why. Will Joey have anyone left after she discovers the truth about her past?
Cameron Davis is a man from another life, for years he has been focused on his mission. The drive that keeps his soul locked inside a physical body, staving off the reaper. That all changes when he is given the task of protecting Joey and stopping the attacks.
This girl makes him weak and brings up memories of a past he left behind nearly a century ago. What secrets lie beyond his contract with the elusive Warner family, and why does this girl need protecting?
Lineage is a young adult novel but is recommended for readers 16+ due to violence.
J.N. Sheats is an artist turned author. Living in Maryland with six wild cats, and her husband, J.N. spends her days designing book covers and teasers for other authors. At night she is at the mercy of her demanding characters, and their wild fantasies.
Dark Paranormal Fantasy is her preferred genre of writing, but anything is game. Maybe even a lovely romance novel or two in the near future.
When not writing, designing, or drawing, J.N. spends her time doing a host of other activities. Including: gardening, jewelry making, cooking, and watching far too much television.
Author Links:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jsheatsart
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Amazon: https://amzn.to/2Lp2wN3

Joey~
“Are you a stalker or something?” I tried to sound cool and confident, but it came out in shaky words that stumbled over my tongue.

He chuckled and I felt his chest rumble just behind me, what delightful torture.

“Why would I waste my time stalking you?” His words shattered me, this game between us left me spinning in confusion. Something hungry always sparked in his eyes when we interacted. I could the warmth that swirled in those azure eyes, but then he would open that mouth of his and ruin it.

“Excuse me?”

“Not everything is about you, little girl.”

Little girl!? I’ll show him.

I could think of a thousand things I wanted to come back with, the bitter sting of rejection was the only thing that was keeping me silent. I didn’t want to look like some wounded girl, it would only prove him right.

Shrugging out of the red leather jacket I was entertaining purchasing, I tossed it on the discard pile and went to collect the other two I had settled on. There was no reason to stick around so he could degrade me more. In fact I deiced to implement one of Marty’s tricks. Give the cold shoulder, let him stew in the fact I was big enough to walk away.

“Hold on,” he said grabbing my arm and drawing me back toward him. “I need something from you.”

“I’ll scream.”

The words just fell out, it was the first thing that jumped into my head and it was out of my mouth before I could think it through. Threatening this man was dangerous I knew that from last night, but no matter how many warning bells went off in my head I wanted this fight between us.

I wanted to yell and scream at him for the way he treated me. Not just now but last night as well. To tell Mr. Blue-eyes just how wrong he was about me, and that I did nothing to deserve this strange and icy behavior of his. Instead I settled for a stare down, fixing my glare right on him to show how serious I was. His eyes locked on me and the cocky smirk he had been sporting twisted up into a wicked grin. It might be sick but I was beginning to think he enjoyed when I challenged him.

We stood there for long unyielding seconds staring at each other, neither of us blinking or softening our hard looks. The sound of two store workers grabbed my attention, I readied to struggle or make a scene, whichever it took to get him to know I was serious and pissed. Reading myself I waited for the two women to come into view, but Cameron acted first pushing me back into one of the dressing rooms.

The heavy black curtain parted as he pushed me through until I could feel  something hard at my back as the curtain fell closed behind us, shielding our interactions from the open view of the store. We were alone, completely alone among empty dressing stalls, his body between me and the exit. My rage mixed with the heat of excitement.

“What the hell?” I yelled.

I tried to pull from his grasp by placing my free hand on his chest to push. It was a half hearted attempt that faltered once my hand landed on his firm muscles, my strength left me and I melted into the contact. Cameron didn’t waste any time grabbing my wrist and securing it against the wall at my side. The swift movement and command of my body left me flushed from the thrill, what was happening to me? I was like a child interacting with their first crush.

“Don’t you dare.” He growled, the smirk gone from his face. “You remember last night. Remember that danger, the very real threat to your life.”

Posted in Dystopian, Fantasy, Free, Freebie Blitz, Series, Young Adult, Young Adult Dystopian, Young Adult Fantasy

Carbon

Title: Carbon
Author: AJ Eversley
Genre: YA Dystopian Sci-Fi
Editor: Q Books Editing
Cover Designer: Cover Art by Salome Totladze
Blurb:
Strangers become allies. Lovers become enemies. And a destiny formed before birth unfolds.
Sawyer spent most of her life hunting the very thing she has now become. No longer the Watcher she once was, Sawyer struggles to make sense of her new identity. Though she now has the powers of a Carbon, she is also tied to the control Coleman has over all of his creations.
Desperate for help and answers, Sawyer travels to the United Isles with Max in search of an ally. Not only must she learn to harness her new abilities, she must find a way to mend a broken heart…if her past doesn’t kill her first.
The epic journey continues, and the war for the human race draws ever closer. Join the resistance in the next chapter of the Watcher Series.

 AJ Eversley is the author of the WATCHER series. A true north Canadian girl, AJ currently lives in Central Alberta with her husband and dog. When she’s not writing, she can be found binge watching Harry Potter, quoting various movies in everyday conversation, and eating copious amounts of candy.

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There was a bang across the hall as Max strutted in. His usual smooth grin hit me from across the room as he filled up a bowl full of slop. Amusement tugged at the corner of his mouth when I scowled back at him and he parked himself down across from me.
“Do you mind?” he asked.
“It’s a free world.” I shrugged.
He snorted. This was his usual game, finding any way to annoy me. Even sitting down across from me irritated me to no end, but I did my best to ignore him and returned to stirring my cold food.
We were both silent as Max moved his food around with his spoon for a few minutes before he let out a heavy sigh. Max placed the bowl onto the floor where Chevy was waiting eagerly to gobble it all down.
“I can’t eat any more of this garbage,” he grumbled.
“Keep your voice down,” I hushed.
“Oh, come on. It’s not like you’re eating it either. Everyone knows it sucks. I’m not saying anything you’re not already thinking.” He gestured to my still-full bowl, now cold from sitting for so long.
“We’re guests here. Show a little respect.” My voice was quiet but stern.
Max leaned into the table, surveying my body, my face, and my mouth. “Then you eat it,” he challenged me. “Eat more than one bite, and I’ll stop complaining.” He raised an eyebrow. I wasn’t sure if he was trying to piss me off, or if the hint of worry and pleading in his voice I detected was begging me to eat something. Anything. I’d been starving myself unintentionally, but it was hard to focus on things like eating when there was so much rattling my brain.
I didn’t look away, and I didn’t touch the spoon that still sat in my cold food. Crossing my arms, I settled in to wait him out, unwilling to let him win even one battle with me.
His shoulders slumped, and I realized worry indeed was hidden behind his feeble challenge. He pushed his chair back hard, clenching his jaw tightly, as he picked up the empty bowl from Chevy. “Didn’t think so. Looks like we’re both going to starve to death in this metal trap.”
I rolled my eyes, “I’ll be fine. You’re the one who will suffer, not me.”
He swaggered around the table and leaned in so close that his breath tickled my neck, but I didn’t flinch or look away. His gaze swept from my head to my toes once again. “I’m not the one who needs to save a dying world. I don’t need to be in peak condition or feed a body that isn’t quite human. I’m not the one who’ll suffer. Everyone else will if you don’t stop moping around and feeling sorry for yourself.” His cold glare was like ice in my veins as he stepped away. With a slight smirk, he spun on his heels and left before I’d even blinked, leaving a shudder down my spine.
His words rang in my ears, “a body that isn’t quite human.” I was a Carbon now, no longer human, even though every instinct inside of me was wired to protect humans, not hurt them. That was why they all looked at me differently, why Max looked at me with prying eyes as if he was trying to figure out what exactly I was. I was different, yet I found myself forgetting that at times.
But I wasn’t a hero anymore. I was no longer someone or something to be proud of. There was a monster living inside of me, waiting to break free. And the weight of everything he said was the reason I hadn’t slept in weeks or eaten in days. I wanted to do something about it. I wanted to be better. But every time I thought of it, the guilt and pain took over, and I could barely breathe without breaking down. I often wondered what Kenzie would think if he saw me, or if he knew what I was—what I had become. Would he look at me like he used to? Or would he look at me with disgust for what I let happen to me? What I let myself become?
Chevy sat at my side, pawing at my leg, as he looked up with worried eyes. I stroked his head as I looked at my bowl of slop with a groan. My hand quivered as I took a tentative bite and fought the gag threatening to bring the food back up. With a long, hard swallow, I took another bite and another—until the bowl was empty.
And I could’ve sworn I saw the door to the hall close a crack more than it had been before.
Posted in Chick Lit, Contemporary, Free, Freebie Blitz, Pre Order, Romance, Romantic Suspense

Unlikely Venture

Title: Unlikely Venture
Author: Kristen Luciani
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Blurb:
Plans. They always have such a funny way of not working out.
Jessica Latham thought she was sailing down the aisle toward happily ever after until a devastating diagnosis sent her fiancé fleeing like a fugitive. Bad judgement and too much wine hurled her into the arms of a sexy stranger as a distraction from her crushing reality. No strings, no last names, just pure unbridled passion.
It was only one night, nothing that could ever come back to haunt her. Or so she thought.
But when a vindictive frenemy reveals Jessica’s secret, her past mistake puts everything at risk, including her heart.

Kristen Luciani is a USA Today bestselling author and momtrepreneur with a penchant for stilettos, Silicon Valley, plunging necklines and grapefruit martinis. As a deep-rooted romantic who prefers juicy drama to fill the lives of anyone other than her, she tried her hand at creating a world of enchantment, sensuality, and intrigue, finally uncovering her true passion. No pun intended…
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