Monday, May 22, 2017



Title: Rise of the Sea Witch
Author: Stacey Rourke
Genre: YA Fantasy/ Fairy Tale and Folklore
Cover Designer: Najla Qamber Designs
Publisher: Anchor Group Publishing
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR
Blurb:  Details of the sea witch’s banishment have been exaggerated. The body count that preempted it was not. Once an illustrious princess, her hands and tentacles were stained with the blood of thousands. No one could comprehend how the hooks of madness dragged her down from her life of privilege.  

Born Princess Vanessa of Atlantica, the ambitious young royal was one of two children born to the great King Poseidon. She and her brother, Triton, were groomed from birth to rule. Yet only one would ascend that coveted throne. While carefree Triton flits through his training with a cavalier demeanor and beguiling charm, Vanessa’s hunger for her father’s acceptance drives her to push herself to the limits of magic, and combat to become a leader worthy of her people.   

When war against the humans ravages their once regal kingdom, political sides are chosen. Factions from the seven seas challenge the existing leadership, pitting Vanessa against her brother in a vicious battle for the crown. Traitors are exposed, dark family secrets revealed, and a once strong sibling bond is strained to its breaking point.

Only when the ink black waters from the ultimate betrayal rescind, will the truth be known of how the villainous sea witch rose with one name on her vengeful lips--Triton.




RONE Award Winner for Best YA Paranormal Work of 2012 for Embrace, a Gryphon Series Novel
Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012
Turning Pages Magazine Winner for Best YA book of 2013 & Best Teen Book of 2013 
Stacey Rourke is the author of the award winning YA Gryphon Series, the chillingly suspenseful Legends Saga, and the romantic comedy Adapted for Film. She lives in Michigan with her husband, two beautiful daughters, and two giant dogs. She loves to travel, has an unhealthy shoe addiction, and considers herself blessed to make a career out of talking to the imaginary people that live in her head. 
Visit her at www.staceyrourke.com
or on Twitter or instagram at Rourkewrites.
Prologue
I admit that in the past I was a princess. They weren’t kidding when they called me … well, a spoiled twit.” Tentacles rolling and churning beneath me, I turn to the newest member of my little garden with effortless grace. Arms thrown out wide, I grant the shriveled polyp a beguiling smile. Those around him tremble in fear, pulling as far away from him as their roots deep within the ocean floor will allow. “Through rather unfortunate circumstances it became mandatory I mend my ways. And, yes, some of the techniques I employed earned me the title of villain.”
“Never, my Queen,” Floteson murmurs. Coiling around my upper arm, he drapes himself across my shoulder.
Jetteson’s oily scales lovingly brush my cheek. “Every one of them was deserving of your wrath.”
Shoulders curling in, I pucker my lips which are freshly glossed by a crimson sea-flower and tenderly scratch each of them under their chins. “How horrible can I be to be so adored by such sweet babies?”
“She shows us nothing but love,” my darling zebra sharks chorus.
Their unwavering dedication soothes me, allowing me to expel a calming breath that bubbles in a wreath around my face.
“I am not the horrible beast many think me to be. Yet I feel it is your own misconceptions that brought you here, and led to … well, you know.” Floating passed my ornate vanity mirror, which seems out of place in the dreary cave I call home, I suck in my cheeks. Turning my head one way and then the other, I inspect my reflection. A smug smile curls the corners of my lips. The woman staring back at me is positively voluptuous with power, mayhem swirling within her clay-gray eyes. “Undoubtedly, you’ve heard rumors of my banishment.”
Hitching one eyebrow at my newly planted polyp, I watch him squirm under the weight of my attention.
“Do you even know my true given name, I wonder? Before hateful whisperings from the farthest reaches of the Seven Seas dubbed me The Sea Witch, I went by another name: Princess Vanessa of Atlantica. I harbored dreams of bringing peace and happiness to the kingdom … as their noble queen.”
Jabbing my hands on to my ample hips, I turn in a swirl of black and purple. “I’m not sure if that pitiful pout is caused by your deep longing to hear more, or if you’re mourning the loss of your shriveled limbs. But,” with a theatrical roll of my wrist, I snap my fingers—my cauldron sparks to life, an ethereal green glow simmering from within, “I choose to think the former because it’s about me … and all of my favorite things are.
“It would be predictable for me to say it all began with the death of my mother. Predictable and false.”
Water rushes beneath me with one mighty flap of all my tentacles. The power of the act propels me over to my alchemy shelves, where my fingers flick over the exposed vials. Some days I seek to terrorize my captives, calling out each ingredient or dangling it over their heads before tossing it into my brew.
Tongue of porpoise.
Eye of cuttlefish.
Shell of sea turtle.
I won’t lie and say watching their complexions green and bug eyes bulge isn’t a guilty pleasure of mine. For the moment, however, a wave of generosity—brought on by the mention of my mother—prompts me to toss them in without my usual theatrics. Each is received into the cauldron’s wide-mouth drum with a puff of smoke and spray of sparks.
“As much as I loved my mother, losing her didn’t drive me to madness as some would have you believe.” Hearing the melancholy in my tone, I bristle. “Far from it, in fact. I would have subjected myself to an abysmal existence of the mundane in honor of her memory. No, it was after the black flags of mourning had been strung through the kingdom, after the spectacle of her funeral procession had passed, that my descent began.”
Throwing one final ingredient into the cauldron, a veil of greasy smoke wafts from its rim. Images begin to form within the haze: the king’s regal quarters, and a formidable frame seated in a high-backed chair behind a massive stone desk.
Crouching down, I position myself eye level with the miniscule scene unfolding. My tentacles coil into tight knots beneath me. “This was the night … the night when I was touched by magic for the very first time … and loathed it to my very core.”
Within the ghostly image, the curtain to the king’s quarters is pushed open. A heavy set nursemaid with stripes of gray in the messy twist of her bun swims in. On one hip she balances a cherub-faced baby that’s only two months shy of his second birthday. Blond ringlets halo his head. Both his eyes and cheeks are ruddy from crying. The frazzled servant’s other hand clings to that of a raven-haired princess who rubs at her tired, violet eyes with a chubby, toddler fist.
“If you aren’t following along yet, that princess is me,” I explain to my captive audience. “The maid softly shushing my younger self is Loriana. Oh, how dear she was to me. She was a servant in the castle, tasked with tending to my brother and I. That little sunset orange tail poking out from behind her belongs to her son, Alastor. He was Triton’s best friend and would become much more than that to me ...”
“Sire,” respectfully bowing her head, Loriana readjusted her hold on Prince Triton, “I hate to interrupt.”
My father, King Poseidon, pushed his chair back from the desk in a swirl of water and sand, and rose in greeting. To the rest of the kingdom, he was known as simply the supreme ruler of Atlantica. To me, and my juvenile ignorance, he was the God of the Sea who towered over us all. I envisioned all of his enemies, and anyone that ever wished me harm, falling to their knees and trembling before his commanding presence. His hair and thick beard were the red of Precious Coral. Muscle rippled over every inch of his exposed torso. His narrow waist tapered into an emerald green tail that perfectly matched the shining jewels of his eyes. Countless times I had examined the lines of his face in search of some similarity between the two of us. None could be found. Triton had his smile, and later—when adolescence hit—he would inherit his strong chin. Me? Every inch of me was a lackluster shadow of my mother’s regal beauty. Where her eyes and tail sparkled like freshly polished amethyst, mine seemed dull by comparison. Or, perhaps the lighting from the pedestal I’d built for her in my mind shone for her with a more flattering shimmer.
“The hour is late. I welcome the interruption.” Poseidon set his fish bone quill onto the desk top, and positioned its stone cradle on top of it. “How can I be of service, Loriana?”
 “It’s the children, Your Highness.” Her face a mask of maternal sorrow, Loriana gave my hand a quick pulse of comfort. “This is the first night they have ever tried to go to sleep without a lullaby from their dear mother. I’m afraid I can’t seem to calm their troubled little hearts.”
Poseidon’s broad chest expanded with a deep inhalation, and tipping his head he exhaled a flurry of rushing water and bubbles. “This is a troubling time for us all,” he agreed. Crossing the room with one stroke of his tail, he extended his hands to receive Triton. My brother waved his arms in eager delight, wriggling into the security of Father’s strong embrace. Inching forward, I blinked up at the mighty king. He floated past without so much as ruffling my hair. “I’m afraid I don’t have your mother’s gift of song, but perhaps we could sit a spell and find peace in our togetherness.”
Honoring her position outside of the room, Loriana gave me a gentle push forward to follow my father. Casting a tentative glance over my shoulder, I did just that. Poseidon swirled Triton around, eliciting a giggle that crinkled the corners of his ocean blue eyes, before the king collapsed on the sea sponge sofa with his darling son on his lap. I perched on the very edge of the far cushion, uninvited and unnoticed.
Before that moment our father had been more of a … hmm, how to put this delicately? A figurehead in our lives. We knew of him and regarded him fondly, but unfortunately his kingly duties allowed our primary interactions to be those staged for political potency. Our mother, the lovely Queen Titonis, spent her days caring for my brother and I with only Loriana to aid her. Now, Poseidon had no choice but to pick up the yolk. For Triton this transition seemed to be going swimmingly. I, however, was getting as much attention as the Orca-bone end table.
Hands under the little prince’s pits, Poseidon turned Triton to face him. “I was so proud of how you behaved during the processional today,” he gushed. “You honored not only me, but your mother’s memory when you clasped your tiny fist over your heart and held your head high as her carriage passed.”
“Follow Nessa.” Triton looked to me with love, his tailfin a muted clap when connecting with Father’s lap.
“Your sister has two whole years of further training and experience than you, my boy.” Poseidon’s shoulders raised, his voice dropping to a conspiratorial whisper. “You exhibited the poise of a true leader.”
My lips clamped shut to stifle a sob, his words stinging like a slap. I had just as much right to the throne as Triton, but this was the first moment I became painfully aware of who he longed to see succeed him. It would not be the last … or the most painful.
“She held her curtsy so long, merfolk threw flowers!” Alastor, a year and a half older and far more eloquent than Triton, darted into the room to brazenly interject. Mahogany waves curled over his earlobes, adding dimension to his round little face that resembled a bubble. The boldness of his gesture quickly shriveled under Father’s menacing glare.
“The son of a servant entering the king’s quarters?” Father boomed, one eyebrow raising in question. “One might question your upbringing, lad.”
“A thousand apologies, Your Majesty!” Loriana blushed from her neck clear up to her earlobes and snapped her fingers at her wandering boy. “Alastor, come here at once!”
Shoulders sagging like a stone cast to the depths, Alastor returned to his rightful place in the hall. The heat of his topaz stare bore into me as he paddled along, searching for even the slightest acknowledgement of his noble deed.
I had none to offer.
My own gaze had drawn away from my brother, laughing while Father tickled his cheeks with his beard, to scan the items neatly arranged on father’s desk. Inanimate objects which earned his attentions daily just by being. On the right side, closest to his scrawling hand, sat the quill. Its fat little ink pot was perfectly positioned perpendicular beside it. In the center of the desk, weighted by stones carved with the royal crest, rested a stack of scrolls awaiting the king’s notice. On the left-hand corner, Poseidon’s late night snacking needs were met by a plate of rolled and seasoned seaweed puffs.
The ink pot lured my attention back as if calling to me.
I had never had to work for attention in any capacity. My mother had always given it freely, and in limitless supply. Since she had been taken from me, I had unquenched needs: hugs, stories, and all of that … drivel. So, yes, I thought about acting out. I toyed with the idea of knocking over that little clay pot and letting the ink flow to ruin the staged perfection of father’s space. More than that, I wanted to. I wanted to hear him shout out my name in his menacing vibrato, because at least then he would have to acknowledge me. While my hands stayed folded neatly in my lap, as the good little mergirl I was, something within me I had never felt before reached out. Palpable energy, only I seemed privy to, crackled through the water to cradle the pot in its hold. I could feel it, poised and ready, awaiting my command. Biting my lower lip to fend off a threatening grin, my essence gave barely a nudge and the ink pot tumbled. A thick black cloud exploded over my father’s desk, staining the scrolls and ruining the once delectable wraps.
“Vanessa!” thundered my father, rocketing off the sofa. “Look what you’ve done!”
I turned toward him with feigned remorse … and screamed. The howl of terror tore from my chest until my gills ached and my throat was raw.
There was a buzz of activity: Poseidon calling to the nursemaid, Loriana swimming in as fast as her fins could carry her, Triton wailing in fear, Alastor trying to shush his friend from the doorway to which he’d been banished. I neither saw nor heard any of this.
Floating in the center of the room, bobbing with the current, was my mother.
Not the serene vision of loveliness I had known her to be that was full of life and love. Heck, I even would’ve happily settled for the slumbering beauty she appeared to be during her funeral. In vast contrast, the entity hovering before me had chunks of flesh gnawed away by assorted sea beasts. Cracked, ashen lips curled into a snarl. Black ooze bubbled through her teeth, dripping from her chin and clouding the water. My scream reached a fevered pitch, spots dancing before my eyes. The ghoul, who in life sang me to sleep, reached for me with one hand that had been gnawed to bone.
You see, by using magic I opened a door and allowed the darkness in. The cost being more than I could bear, I vowed to myself—as my consciousness waned—never, ever to dabble with such things again.
Oh, the lies we tell ourselves …





SEX GOD, a sizzling hot stand-alone contemporary romance title by Marie Force is now live. Check out the purchase links for the book below. The previous book in this standalone series, Sex Machine, is just .99¢ for a limited time, so make sure you grab it while you can!

 

SEX GOD by Marie Force

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Book Blurb:

A sizzling hot stand-alone contemporary romance!

 

I inherited a life I never intended to live.

I've upheld my responsibilities admirably.

And I’ve taken care of my own needs privately...

I'm biding my time until I can get the hell out of here.

But I didn’t count on having unfinished business

With one of my very best friends…

 

When a man has a certain “reputation" to uphold,

There can be no unhappy customers left behind.

Lauren is a loose end that won’t be tied up no matter how hard I try.

And I try hard. Really, really… hard.

 

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EXCERPT:
Lauren
I walk through the wide-open space that Honey uses to shoot her Desert Babies portraits. Families come from all over Texas for her distinctive photos that feature babies in the desert environment that surrounds Marfa. In the office, I find Honey seated at her desk, feet up and keyboard on her lap. “Thank goodness it’s just you. I’m so comfortable, and that’s a rare thing these days.”
Honey’s pregnant belly seems to get bigger every day. “How is my nephew doing?” I drop into one of her visitor chairs.
She lays her hand over the baby bump. “I think he’s playing rugby today.”
“Ouch.”
“You said it. The feet to the ribs are my favorite.”
“Won’t be long now, Mama.”
“I can’t wait. Blake is so excited. He talks to him every night and tells him all the things he’s going to teach him.”
“It’s great to see him so happy.” During our senior year of high school, Blake was devastated by the loss of his girlfriend, Jordan, in a car that he was driving when a truck broadsided it. He’s never been the same, and only after he fell in love with Honey last year did he seem to recover somewhat. “Both of you deserve everything you’ve got now.”
Honey gives me an odd look. “What’s the matter?”
“Why would you ask me what’s wrong when I’m saying you and Blake deserve to be happy?”
“Because I know you, and as much as I appreciate that, I can tell when you’re upset about something.”
That’s the thing about meeting your best friends in kindergarten. No one knows you like they do. “I’m not upset… I’m anxious.”
“About?”
“I have a date with Garrett tonight. A real date, not the usual beer and wings.”
Honey lets out a giddy squeal and claps her hands. “It’s about freaking time!” She puts the keyboard on her desk and drops her feet to the floor so she can lean in for closer scrutiny. “What brought this on? We all assumed you guys decided to just stay friends.”
“We did. We had. We… Well, it’s complicated.”
“How so?”
I bite my lip while trying to decide how much to tell my best friend, who is also Garrett’s good friend. “We sort of had sex six months ago.”
Honey stares at me, eyes agog. “How can you sort of have sex?”
“We did it, but it was weird and awkward and well… not good.”
“Ohhhh.” Honey taps her bottom lip. “This is extremely surprising in light of his… well…”
“Reputation?”
Nodding, Honey says, “Supposedly, he’s somewhat of a… um…”
“God in bed?” Girls we knew growing up used to wax poetic about his skills even when we were still in high school. Garrett thinks we don’t know this, but Honey and I are well aware that more than one tourist has come to town for a roll in the sack with the guy known as the Sex God.
“Yes! So, what the hell went so wrong?”
“I have no idea. I’ve gone over it and over it in my mind a million times, but it never makes sense. I adore him, and vice versa. We’ve been hot for each other for ages. It should’ve been off the charts. Instead, it barely made the chart, and it brought back a lot of crap from when I was with Wayne and he would tell me I suck in bed.”
“Wayne is an asshole, and you do not suck in bed.”
“How do you know that?” I ask with a laugh.
“Because you’re gorgeous and sexy and any man would be lucky to have you in his bed.”
The fear that Wayne is right about me has been keeping me awake at night since the disaster with Garrett. Though I’m touched by Honey’s unwavering love for me, I go with sarcasm to hide my emotional response. “And you’re not even slightly impartial.”
“Not at all. It’s a well-known fact that men who suck in bed frequently make their partners feel responsible for their inadequacies. Clearly, Wayne passed off his own failings onto you, and you can’t let him get away with that.”
“Where did you hear this well-known fact?”
“Cosmo. Where else?”
Snorting with laughter, I say, “Of course. Where else, indeed.” I run my hands over the skirt of my dress as another thought occurs to me. “But what if Wayne was right and I do suck in bed? What if it was my fault that it went so badly with Garrett?”
“Lauren! Stop this! It wasn’t you. It was an off night. I can’t stand to see you doing this to yourself. If you believe that crap, then Wayne wins, and he can’t ever win. I won’t allow it.”
Honey’s fierce defense goes a long way toward making me feel better, but I won’t truly believe it wasn’t me until Garrett and I successfully close the deal.
 

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----------------------------

AUTHOR INFORMATION:

Marie Force is the New York Times bestselling author of more than 50 contemporary romances, including the Gansett Island Series, which has sold nearly 3 million books, and the Fatal Series from Harlequin Books, which has sold 1.5 million books. In addition, she is the author of the Butler, Vermont Series, the Green Mountain Series and the erotic romance Quantum Series, written under the slightly modified name of M.S. Force. All together, her books have sold more than 5.5 million copies worldwide! Her goals in life are simple—to finish raising two happy, healthy, productive young adults, to keep writing books for as long as she possibly can and to never be on a flight that makes the news. Join Marie's mailing list for news about new books and upcoming appearances in your area. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter @marieforce and on Instagram. Join one of Marie's many reader groups. Contact Marie at marie@marieforce.com.  

AUTHOR LINKS:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Newsletter | Goodreads

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InkSlinger Blogger Final

Saturday, May 20, 2017

 

PROMO TOUR

Book: Stars, Stripes & Motorbikes
Series: Holidays in Lake Point #9
Author: Sarah Cass
Publisher: Divine Roses Ink

*All books are in Series are Stand Alone reads*



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Amazon Universal Buy Link: 

Synopsis

Autumn Trask swore off military men years ago. Between being raised by a father who lost both legs in the Gulf War, and the death of her fiancĂ© she knows her heart can’t take more. She keeps her head down and focuses on running her motorcycle shop. The arrival of the retired military hottie shouldn’t derail her like it does. Despite her attraction, she’s determined to push him away.

Lincoln “Linc” Myer is looking for something. After losing a leg in Afghanistan six years ago he worked hard to get back into life. In an effort to find something different, he took a tour around the states on his bike. He stops in Lake Point to visit his old friend Clay Ryley and becomes immediately entranced by the pink-haired beauty and spunk that is Autumn.

A freak accident changes everything. Can Autumn get over her fears in time? Or will her chance at love skip town?

***All books in Holidays at Lake Point are standalone reads.


What Others Are Saying About Stars, Stripes & Motorbikes

Wow what can I say about Stars, Stripes & motorbikes.

It is simply amazing. It brings into perspective of what losing someone can do, but it's okay to be happy again.

This story follows their lives. I loved how it was a slow build up, and not just rushed into relationship. It shows you can find happiness as long as you take one day at a time. I couldn't put it down from first page, I had to know how it all ended. WTMO 
~ Charlotte Isaac

To put it simply I loved this book. This was a new to me author and I have a feeling I'll be going back over her back catalog because of how much I loved this book. Linc is quite simply magnificent. Autumn has her issues and her reasons for how she is that are understandable and Linc deals with those issues and everything that happens in the book frankly with grace, even though that's an attribute normally considered feminine in nature. It was really nice to read a book that understands bikers (not MC) as well as this one does. 
~ HeadTripping Books

When Linc rolls into Lake Point he doesn't know what he is after or going to do. When LInc sees Autumn she makes him wish for a new beginning. Autumn is hiding some secrets and doesn't want to date a Soldier ever again will see get past those feelings or will she let the past get in her way? Linc hasn't told Autumn everything about himself will she understand that he isn't just any Solider? Can these too get past the past and move forward to the future? This couple is a very complex couple both so head strong and determined to get their ways. Grabs you from the first word until the very last word.

~ Patricia Ann  Blevins

***Reviews can be found on www.amazon.com



Holidays in Lake Point Series

Santa, Maybe


Deep-Fried Sweethearts

Stalled Independence

Witch Way 


A Thorough Thanksgiving


Eve's New Year 

Heartstrings & Hockey Pucks 

Luck of the Cowgirl 


Stars, Stripes & Motorbikes


Free Falling


Love For Hire


Haunted Hearts

About Sarah Cass




Sarah Cass' world is regularly turned upside down by her three special needs kids and loving mate, so she breaks genre barriers; dabbling in horror, straight fiction and urban fantasy.  She loves historicals and romance, and characters who are real and flawed, so she writes to understand what makes her fictional people tick.  And she lives for a happy ending - eventually. And enough twists to make it look like she enjoys her title of Queen of Trauma Drama a little too much.

An ADD tendency leaves her with a variety of interests that include singing, dancing, crafting, cooking, and being a photographer. She fights through the struggles of the day, knowing the battles are her crucible; she may emerge scarred, but always stronger.  The rhythms to her activities drive her words forward, pushing her through the labyrinths of the heart and the nightmares of the mind, driving her to find resolutions to her character's problems.


While busy creating worlds and characters as real to her as her own family, she leads an active online life with her blog, Redefining Perfect, which gives a real and sometimes raw glimpse into her life and art.  You can most often find her popping out her 140 characters in Twitter speak, and on Facebook.

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Surrender  (Steel Brothers Saga #6) 
by Helen Hardt  
Releases: 16th May
Genre: Contemporary Romance 
Synopsis
Jonah Steel has fallen in love with Melanie Carmichael but still lives with the guilt that consumes him as he tries to unravel the mystery of his family's past. A new threat has surfaced, and he finds himself trapped in a web of deceit and lies. 
Melanie loves Jonah but has yet to surrender completely to his needs. Meanwhile, a new friend uncovers more information and more questions. While the ghosts of Melanie's past still hover around her, she joins Jonah on his quest for answers. Together, they vow to find the truth.
 
But the deeper they dig, the more danger they uncover...and Jonah's life hangs in the balance.
Buy the Book
Meet The Author
#1 New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Helen Hardt’s passion for the written word began with the books her mother read to her at bedtime. She wrote her first story at age six and hasn’t stopped since. In addition to being an award winning author of contemporary and historical romance and erotica, she’s a mother, a black belt in Taekwondo, a grammar geek, an appreciator of fine red wine, and a lover of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream. She writes from her home in Colorado, where she lives with her family. Helen loves to hear from readers.
Facebook   Twitter Buy Links for all Helen's Books: http://www.helenhardt.com/book/


                   
                
                 Steel Brothers Saga Series - Available Here 
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