Category: Book Blitz

Outcasts Assassin


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Outcasts Book 4
Sci-fi Romance
Publisher: Anything-but-Ordinary Books
Published: January 2019

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Torrin’s simple mission is seriously complicated when he finds Arrista, a lovely Sarronti female, in need of rescue. The Sarronti resent the Outcasts and continually sabotage their efforts to build a settlement on the primitive planet. But Arrista isn’t just any Sarronti. She’s the personal servant of one of the most powerful Sarronti. The information Arrista can provide would be vitally important to the Outcasts, so Torrin is ordered to use their mutual attraction to question her.

Arrista has been taught to fear and mistrust the savage Outcasts, so why does she find Torrin so fascinating, so desirable? It’s not just his muscular body and rugged features. He is kinder and more protective than any male she has ever known. She is drawn to him by a force so compelling it leaves her no choice but surrender. She wants him, needs him, but can she trust him not to break her heart?



Note to Readers: This book contains detailed descriptions of sizzling passion only suitable for mature readers. Certain plot elements carry on from book to book. Though Assassin can be read as a standalone, it’s more fun to read the series in order.





Other Books in the Outcasts Series:



Heretic
Outcasts, Book 1
Publisher: Anything-but-Ordinary Books
Published: April 2018

Genre: Sci-fi RomanceRestless and embittered by an abusive past, Arton the Heretic finds himself in a battle of wills with Lily, a gorgeous geneticist. She holds the key to the future of his people, but she was brought to this savage world against her will and that’s an insult she’ll not soon forget. Their attraction is instantaneous and intense, yet each has valid reasons for mistrusting the other. He wants her, is consumed with the need to claim her, but he can’t focus on the future until he deals with the past.



Marauder
Outcasts, Book 2
Publisher: Anything-but-Ordinary Books
Published: June 28, 2018

Rex Dravon, a notorious smuggler, is one of the Outcasts’ most important allies. Many of the Outcasts’ philosophies and approaches to life in general appeal to him, but he’s hesitant to commit to any cause. Hoping to entice Rex into committing, Arton the Heretic, tells Rex that he is genetically compatible with one of the “captive brides”, a feisty blonde named Thea Cline.

Thea is still enraged that she was dragged from Earth without her permission, and she’s recovering from a horrendous tragedy. She sneaks aboard the Marauder hoping to steal a weapon. Instead she’s confronted by the ship’s handsome commander. She knows to be wary of Rex because of his reputation, but she’s instantly, and powerfully, drawn to him. His offer to help her escape comes a little too quickly and she fears he has ulterior motives. Is he simply hoping to lure her into his bed—a fate she’s not sure she’d mind—or is his motivation more nefarious?




Tracker
Outcasts, Book 3
Publisher: Anything-but-Ordinary Books
Published: September 2018

Xorran, a famed tracker, is sent to find two human females kidnapped by the Outcasts’ enemy. His search seems futile until he encounters Sara and a feisty battle cat cub. He’s fascinated by the tiny animal, but feels an immediate and powerful connection with the wisecracking human.

Sara is still angry about being brought to the Outcasts’ planet without her permission, yet her stubbornness is no match for “the pull”. As they work together to rescue her friend, their passion flares ever hotter. Can Xorran prove to Sara that he wants more than a torrid affair? Now that he’s found a potential mate, he will settle for nothing less than forever.




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Excerpt


Outcasts 4: Assassin

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Copyright © 2019 Cyndi Friberg



Torrin’s jaw dropped, and his heart lurched inside his chest. For one blissful moment, he was paralyzed by shock and primal need. A goddess stood before him naked, offering her perfect body to him. High round breasts, tiny waist and softly curved hips combined to form the personification of his wildest dreams. A small patch of hair above her mound was the same silvery blue as the shimmering hair on her head. Her legs were long and shapely, perfect to wrap around his waist while he thrust strong and steady between her thighs.

“I am willing to serve you, but I need to know what pleases you.”

Her soft, tremulous voice snapped him from his lust addled stupor. He forced his gaze back to her face as he pushed to his feet. His ocular scanners provided information on her biological functions, but he knew nothing about the Sarronti, had no idea if the readings were problematic or not.

Still, fear smelled like fear regardless of the species and facial expressions were nearly universal. Her pastel blue gaze followed his movements with a mixture of dread and hopelessness. Her bleak resignation tore at his heart, and he’d thought himself much too jaded to feel pity. It was obvious she’d done this before, offered her body out of obligation and fear.

He snatched the towel off the deck and wrapped it around her, inadvertently trapping her arms at her sides. “This is not why I brought you here. If we share pleasure, it will be because you want me just as much as I want you.”


About the Author

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Cyndi Friberg has written about rock stars, vampires, and cat shifters, but she’s currently focused on outer space. Her stories are fun, fast-paced, and seriously hot. She has made the USA Today Top 100, and every book in the Battle Born series landed on Amazon’s Top 100. She is currently working on Outcasts, a spin-off series set in the Battle Born universe.





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Painting With Words


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Poetry
Painting With Words: Poetry for a New Era
Publisher: Manor House Publishing
Published: November 2018

This collection of poems features six thematically distinct parts, displaying a full spectrum of human emotions, capturing the shared aspects of our experience. Each poem reflects how deeply the author has traveled into his personal experience to process its meaning. His poetry is incisive and devoid of redundant imagery that might obscure the truth, both the poetic and human one.

“With the multi-layered quality of the poems, Prattis takes the reader through the immensities of joy and pain, through the infinite and the mysterious. He dissects the dissonance of the modern world with the scalpel of his poetic musings, and describes the interflow between the human soul and the spirit of earth, paving his quest for spiritual evolution and higher meaning. Prattis’ poetry is a poetic narrative of our basest attributes as a species, our greed, and propensity toward savage violence, as well as our ability to love beyond the telling power of words. His verses awaken the sense of the infinite within us surging our hearts with the power of their message. They restore the possibility of the ancient dialogue between humans and nature, and most of all they restore a sense of optimism.” Jana Begovic – Foreword


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About the Author

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A Poet, Global Traveler, Founder of Friends for Peace, Guru in India, Zen teacher and Spiritual Warrior for planetary care, peace and social justice. Ian presently lives in Ottawa, Canada and encourages people to find their true nature, so that humanity and the planet may be renewed. He mostly stays local to help turn the tide in his home city so that good things begin to happen spontaneously.  He is an award winning author of seventeen books. His novel – Redemption – is being made into a movie. His poetry, memoirs, fiction, articles, blogs, and podcasts appear in a wide range of venues. Beneath the polished urban facade remains a part of human nature that few acknowledge because it is easier to deny the basic instincts that have kept us alive on unforgiving earth. Prattis bravely goes there in his outstanding literary work. A stone tossed into the waters of life.


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Saving Paludis


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Science Fiction
Date Published: June 2018
Publisher: Publicious Pty Ltd

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Finalist in the Readers’ Favorite 2018 International Book Awards


An alien revolution centuries in the making will change mankind’s future forever …

Police agent Stefan Lattanzis never expected his planet to become a battlefield, nor Earth for that matter. But when scientists from Paludis share a technological breakthrough with Earth authorities, peace escalates to the brink of war in a hurry. It doesn’t help that the local aliens have a dangerous and mystifying agenda of their own. Meanwhile, a desperate human cult has its own plans to exploit the powerful new technology…

To keep his homeworld alive, Stefan must team with two strangers, a botanist, and a mysterious seer. As embattled factions vie for control of the universe, the trio must trust in each other to keep the new technology from ripping time and space apart.

Saving Paludis is an electrifying sci-fi thrill-ride. If you like futuristic technology, alien political intrigue, and high-octane, paranormal action, then you’ll love Clayton Graham’s interstellar adventure!


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Excerpt


SELMA RETURNS HOME

Rain was falling in a steady drizzle as Selma turned into the road that led to her domicile. It was not yet fully dark and the final vestiges of sunlight creeping through a solitary hole in the clouds had turned the aluminium domes of the dwellings to a blood red. The roadway, smooth and black and shiny, snaked like a ribbon through the glistening streetscape and dark, low clouds threatened to crush the buildings beneath their ponderous weight. 

Strangely, she’d encountered few individuals as she walked through the streets and, like on the drive south, very little traffic. It was as if a giant hand had been placed over the mouth of Kentucky, stifling its usual raucous behaviour. Selma assumed most people were indoors and she wondered if a storm was approaching.

She stopped outside her home, unable to resist a glance back to that part of the road where she had been abducted by Serpentine. Serpentine! Where was he now? She palmed the switch, pressed the code buttons in the right sequence and her door slid open. Entering, Selma turned on the light and the door closed behind her. The rain suddenly increased in ferocity, and she heard its rattling on the dome of the house. She looked around. Nothing had been disturbed, nobody had gained entry.

She strolled into the lounge and sat down. The videoscreen stared at her blankly. Selma switched it on. There was a message scrolling across the bottom of the monitor. She stared at it in amazement, leaning forward in the chair. Then she shook her head and palmed the screen off, then back on again. The message was still there, scrolling innocuously over a documentary film displaying the attractions of Martian architecture. A change of channels did not remove the words. A cold, dark chill seemed to grip her mind and Selma just sat there, unable to move even a finger. The words clutched at her sanity:

Following a savage attack on Saltzburg, Earth forces are now occupying East Paludis. West Paludis authorities have every reason to suspect an assault on our continent is imminent. Our forces are well prepared and confident of repelling the aggressor. If you are not involved in any military or civil defence body, please stay in your homes … 

After several minutes Selma rose, left the screen on, and walked through to the bedroom. She changed into her work uniform and sat on the bed, staring at the red sash of the Natural Order as it lay on the cover. If Kentucky was to be attacked, she would have been better staying with Joby and Marta. Earth forces! It didn’t make sense. Why were they here? Should she go to work? Was nurturing babies not important anymore?

She left the house and went next door. There was nobody in, so she tried further along.

“Please,” she said, as an elderly man answered the door. “What’s going on? What’s this about an invasion?” Raindrops trickled down her face.

The man looked at her quizzically. He was tall and frail with a head full of grey hair, large bags hung under his bloodshot eyes. Selma could not recall seeing him before.

“I’ve been away,” Selma added. “I don’t understand the message on the screen.”

“It’s that fool, James,” the man replied eventually. “Thinks he can take on the entire universe.”

Selma paled. “So it’s true. We’re going to be attacked.”

The man shuffled his feet. “Won’t worry me none,” he said. “I’ve had my share of implants, transplants and injections. I’m about done for this world, anyway.”

Selma backed away, turned and ran back to her home. Something niggled at her mind, something she had to do. A copter swooped low over the rooftops, the sound whining through her head, and she panicked, expecting some kind of attack. Frantically, heart beating madly, she fumbled with the door code and burst into her home. The words were still crossing the screen. She slumped in a chair, pondering what to do. She just couldn’t wait here to die!



About the Author

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As a youngster growing up in the cobbled streets of Stockport, UK, Clayton Graham read a lot of Science Fiction. He loved the ‘old school’ masters such as HG Wells, Jules Verne, Isaac Asimov and John Wyndham. As he left those formative years behind, he penned short stories when he could find a rare quiet moment amidst life’s usual distractions.

He settled in Victoria, Australia, in 1982. A retired aerospace engineer who worked in structural design and research, Clayton has always had an interest in Science Fiction and where it places humankind within a universe we are only just starting to understand.

Clayton loves animals, including well behaved pets, and all the natural world, and is a member of Australian Geographic.

Combining future science with the paranormal is his passion. ‘Milijun’, his first novel, was published in 2016. Second novel, ‘Saving Paludis’, was published in 2018. They are light years from each other, but share the future adventures of mankind in an expansive universe as a common theme.

In between the two novels Clayton has published ‘Silently in the Night’, a collection of short stories where, among many other adventures, you can sympathize with a doomed husband, connect with an altruistic robot, explore an isolated Scottish isle and touch down on a far-flung asteroid.

He hopes you can share the journeys.


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Red is for Rookie


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Mystery, Suspense
Publisher: Elk Lake Publishing, Inc

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RED IS FOR ROOKIE

RED IS FOR RACE

Tracking a kidnapper is an unusual assignment for a private investigator. But Matt is Holly’s lifelong friend. During the race to save him, Holly discovers a lot more than she bargained for. Matt’s in love with her.

RED IS FOR RISK

Holly’s world has never been more dangerous. Her mother’s convinced Holly will end up dead, so she hires a PI to protect Holly. She needs Stryker’s savvy and expertise and is eager for his help, though she risks her heart working with the danger-loving man.

RED IS FOR REVENGE

Stryker’s past returns to haunt him. The kidnapper wants revenge. Stryker risks his life Holly. The dangerous race transforms Holly from a Rookie into a seasoned PI. But with the two men turning her life upside down, can Holly take the heat?



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Excerpt


          As I turned away to retrace my surveillance route, my gaze swept across a man I hadn’t noticed before. He stood near the ballroom door with his back to me. I did a double-take. An off-duty cop. I could spot one a mile away. The way he walked, stood, and observed his surroundings. A cop couldn’t disguise his identity. Calm, professional, strong, he looked as though he controlled the world. With legs braced wide, right foot behind, he kept his piece away from the crowd. Even from the rear the guy looked cocky.

                Someone touched my shoulder. I jumped. While I’d been eyeing the cop, Matt had crossed to my side of the room.

                “Who invited the police?” Matt jabbed a thumb toward the ballroom door.

                “My question exactly. Maybe one of the rich types demanding extra protection. Or maybe the cop’s moonlighting as a bodyguard.”

                Matt rubbed his clean-shaven chin. “Maybe. Don’t know.”

                “Whatever. I’ll find out.”

                “You do that.” Matt sauntered back to his side of the ballroom.

                I planned to check the cop out but didn’t want to meet him this way. I had an image to project. I was an investigator. A professional. Strong. Independent. Cool. Granted, I had a lot to learn, but I sure didn’t want to be seen on Valentine’s night appearing to shop for a man. In a town as closely-connected as Dallas, if we met in the line of fire–and I had no doubt we would—he’d never take me seriously. Some time tonight I’d inform the cop I was actually working.

                I policed my half of the room then headed back toward the Champion Wrestler table.

                Big, warm fingers grasped my arm with just enough pressure to make me brake and take notice. The dark-haired, fine-looking man extended his other hand. A sense of recognition nagged me. But I didn’t know him.        

He sat with his back to the wall at the Attorney table catty-cornered to the wrestlers’ enclave. I shook his waiting hand, feeling warmth and solid strength. He wore his dark suit like other men wore uniforms. Daring. Proud. Indomitable. Candlelight reflected mystery in his brown eyes. With the kind of smile you see on a man given an unexpected dish of ice cream, he stood and offered me the empty chair his polished wingtips had guarded. With the chair now free, a bevy of females flew over from different tables and circled him.

                “Sit a while.” 

His compelling expression excluded everyone in the room but me. It was an invitation I didn’t want, but my feet, aching from the unaccustomed spike heels, did. So, I slid into the seat.

“Thanks, but just for a minute.”

                Sophisticated women glared—shoppers vying for the man’s attention. He flashed them a smile and motioned to the nearby Champion Wrestler table. “Those men want to meet you.”

                “I’ll be back.” One woman, wearing heavy eye liner, trailed her hand along the top of the man’s chair and threw him a seductive glance before she moved away. The other ladies stepped over to the strong men’s table.

                “Thanks, man.” One wrestler nodded, his long blonde hair falling into his square-jawed face.

                I turned to the man, a real James Bond type. Unwanted sparks ignited my insides. Too intense to be handsome and too electric to be ignored, he was big, tense, and concentrated. I’d never met a man who looked so ready for adventure.

                Here was trouble masquerading as charm.

                “They’re gonna love this at the office,” Bond drawled.

                I blinked. The heat in his eyes warmed me like sun-melted chocolate. The challenge in his steady gaze stiffened my backbone.

                “The office?” I noticed the bulge under his armpit not quite hidden by his well-fitting dark suit jacket. Tingles trilled my spine.

                “Stryker Black. You’re Holly Garden.”

                Recognition hit me. The out-of-uniform cop I’d spotted standing in the foyer with his back to me. How had he settled in so quickly? His proximity caused my eyelid to do its thing. Most people never see my twitch. I hoped Stryker didn’t. The quivers make me look unprofessional.

“How do you know my name?”

                “Looked up your file at our office.”

                Suspicion brought sudden anger biting into me like the Genesis serpent. To keep my temper in check I whispered. “You’re a police officer?”

                “Used to be. Now a PI. Ace Investigations.”

                I shot to my feet, snagged a four-inch stiletto on the chair rung and lurched forward, catching the table’s edge to keep from landing in his lap.

                “I knew it!” Mom.

 With my nose inches from his ear, his masculine scent broke through my protective aura. Trying not to breathe in his woodsy, nautical aroma, I scooted away.

                Because I wasn’t breathing freely, my whisper sounded weird and nasal. “I want you to leave. At once.”

                “Why should I?”

                I stared and forgot to lower my voice. “You’re not needed.”

                The four lawyers seated around Stryker perked up. Fat and thin, they gazed at me like I was a valuable bequest in a contested will. One leaned so far forward on the table his French cuff dipped into his coffee.

                Stryker remained cool. “I’m sure you’re acquainted with a lady named Violet Garden.” 

                My palms turned sweaty.

                My own mother thought I couldn’t fill Dad’s shoes. She thought I didn’t have the guts to be a detective. She thought I’d fail. Knees weak, I slid back into the chair and gazed down. My fingers itched to fiddle with the clasp on my glittery bag, but I held them still. I couldn’t let the PI see how his words curdled my self-esteem.

                “Security was the word Ms. Garden used.”

                I spoke low, not wanting anyone else to hear. “She didn’t. She couldn’t.” I clamped my lips. Striker didn’t need to know how his words upset me.

                “Hard to believe?” He gave me a hard-boiled, tight-lipped Bogart smile.

                Sitting so close, he didn’t look like a cop. Or a PI for that matter. More like a very, very sexy bad guy. Mafia or something. My throat closed. How could Mom do this to me?

                “Mom asked for you? Personally?”          

“She asked for Ace’s top man.” His dark eyes spoke of secrets, hinted of danger. Pulled me in even as they warned me off.

                I whispered, “Luck of the draw?”

                We’d been talking in hushed tones, but now the PI, a beguiling smirk on his face, spoke louder. “I won the lottery.”

                One lawyer said, “I’ve got to remember that line.”

                The other lawyers grunted agreement.

                Their responses helped me regain my poise. I turned back to the PI. “Okay, you work for our competition . . . and you’re here?” I’d staked out Ace Investigations to see what I was up against, so why hadn’t I laid eyes on him there? And he was an eyeful. Plus, he was feeding me a line. And good at it. Too good.

I scooted my chair away from him. Not that long ago I’d been dumped by another charmer. I wasn’t about to nibble this bait.

                Even if I had wanted to chance another romance, I had a new vocation. I had Dad’s murder to solve and his reputation to sanitize. I needed to prove to the city of Dallas and its entire police force that Dad hadn’t been a dirty Private Investigator. If I failed, our investigative firm would dribble on down the drain. I lifted my chin. Even if I had time to spend with a man, I’d never choose this smoothie. But I did need to size up the competition.

                Investigator Rule Number One – know your enemy.

                So, I did an about face and turned on the sugar. “Stryker, is it?” I smiled sweetly. “I thought I had every PI in Dallas pegged. Glad to meet you.”

                Stryker’s focused expression didn’t change. “Likewise.” He laid a strong hand on my bare arm, raising the hair with a single light touch. “Stay a minute more. Tell me about yourself.”

                A male voice interrupted Stryker. “Let’s be judicious here. Fair’s fair. There’re four attorneys at this table and one lovely woman. Time to share. My name’s Jeff Davidson of Davidson, Hillyer & Greene. I’m sure you’ve heard of my firm. And this is . . . .”

                While Jeff introduced the other three suits, Stryker leaned back and scanned the room, doing his security thing. With me quickly shaking hands around the table, the trio of women who’d huddled around Stryker earlier made their move. Rising from the nearby Champion Wrestler table as if directed by an unseen choreographer, they mobbed Stryker.

                I sucked in a breath. His mouth hanging ajar, Stryker looked stunned. Three wrestlers stood too, pushed aside their chairs, and towered over Stryker. I glimpsed Matt striding across the ballroom toward us, security face on.

                The big blond wrestler, who seemed to be their leader, rasped, “We wasn’t just twiddling our thumbs over here. We was talking with these ladies.” His expression looked downright testy. He raised a fist, looking about to deck Stryker.

                The three glamour girls stepped away from Stryker and melted into the crowd.

Prepared to intervene, I grabbed my purse and wriggled to the edge of my seat, curious to see what Stryker would do. This was plain screwy. Were the wrestlers trying to pick a fight?

                Stryker’s face grew leaner, showing clear bone definition. A paper-thin scar slicing through his cleft chin whitened. He stood and faced the three muscled men, their crimson cummerbunds flashing.

“So?”

                “So, we want our ladies back.”

                “Take them.”

                “Cool it you guys.” I unclasped my purse, thinking I might need my gun.

                The fourth wrestler jumped to his feet, tipping his chair backward. It landed with a thud on the carpeted floor. A solid wall of red cummerbunds circled Stryker. I shot off my chair. One mat-pounder grabbed my arm and hauled me toward his table.

“We want this one too.”

                I jerked my arm loose. My abrupt movement caused my ankle to turn in one of the tricky stilettos.

“Yeow!” I stumbled. Before I could catch my balance, I lost the shoe on my twisted ankle, and fell to my knees.

                Events fast-forwarded. Two wrestlers pummeled Stryker. Someone kicked my evening bag. On hands and knees, I chased it under the Attorney Table to rescue my gun. I glimpsed Matt confronting the other two wrestlers and attempted to squirm out to escort the muscle-jocks to the nearest exit. Crouched on hands and knees, my dress tightened around me like shrink wrap and stopped me cold.

                A lawyer squatted beside me. “Let me help—”

One of the wrestlers slammed him backward with an open palm. With a crash and tinkle of broken glass, the table flipped onto its side. A white and silver rain of crockery and cutlery poured down. A plate of romaine lettuce and blue cheese dressing slapped against my thigh, releasing the odor of salad-splashed velvet. My vision slowed as if I starred in a surreal movie. Mind scanning possible actions, my skirt creeping higher above my knees, I crawled free.

                Was this a diversion for a robbery? I had to take control. Still on hands and knees, I smelled something acrid and sulfuric. The lighted candle centerpiece smoldered at the edge of the tablecloth. With a soft whoosh, flames leapt to life. I grabbed the closest thing at hand, a large slab of prime rib probably from the same uneaten place setting as the salad and beat the flames with the semi-rare meat until they died in wisps of smoke beneath charred beef. Smelling cooked steak mixed with scorched hair and fearful of what I would find, I touched my eyebrows and bangs. Crispy but still there.

                Gasps and murmurings told me the crowd grew around us. Heavy feet shuffled, and I jerked my hand back to keep it from getting trampled. Fists struck flesh accompanied by grunts and colorful language. I couldn’t believe such a brouhaha erupted in our little corner of the big room with so little provocation. Something smelled fishy and it wasn’t the shrimp cocktail sauce dripping onto the carpet. I was about to spring to my feet when a body thudded to within an inch of me and lay still.

                Stryker. One look at Stryker’s bloody face and I all but keeled over him.

My pulse spiked, pushing me into Unthinking Mode. Okay, so I lost it here. Thoughts of my job flew out the window. But only for a few seconds.

Still on my knees, I fished in my clutch for my cell, and dialed 911. Dead zone. Resisting the urge to throw the instrument at a wrestler, I dropped the useless thing back into my purse.

As quickly as the commotion started, it ended. The dull thud of fists on flesh died. Fingers and knees digging into the thick carpet, I lifted one hand and pressed two fingers against the carotid artery in Stryker’s muscular neck. Warm skin. Steady pulsing.

                Lord, please don’t let him be badly hurt.

                With all quiet above me, I assumed Matt held everything under control. I loosened Stryker’s red power tie and rubbed his big, limp hand between both of mine. His lashes, fanned across those high cheekbones, looked longer than any man had a right to own. Other than being a little bloody and lying motionless, he looked fine. Too fine. But I didn’t have to remind myself that Mom hired him. A twinge of joy that it was him, not Matt or me lying on the floor, layered in an uncomfortable guilt that squashed the relief, so I said another quick prayer for the competition PI.

He groaned, and his eyelids fluttered.

                Men’s polished dress shoes, accompanied by glittering high heels, moved close enough for me to touch. One wrestler squatted next to me. “Here, let me—”

                “No. Don’t touch him.” I swatted the man’s beefy hand away from Stryker.

                Stryker opened his eyes, relieving my worry about him. But Mom would arrive any minute for her grand entrance, and I desperately wanted her to gawk at her security being carried away in an ambulance.

I said to the wrestler, “I’ve got to call EMS.”

                Furor at the ballroom doors made me look up. “That was fast. Matt must have gotten through to EMS.” But doubt nagged my brain. Too fast. Way too fast.

                Before I could follow up my hunch, the crowd opened up and two blue-uniformed men, carrying oxygen paraphernalia, a stretcher, and a medical kit hustled to the table.

                The EMS team ignored Stryker who lay concealed by a drooping tablecloth, with only his long legs and feet protruding. One Medic knelt beside another stretched-out body. I struggled to my feet, red dress hiked almost mid-thigh, to identify the victim.

                “Matt!” I rushed over in time to see the medic jab a syringe into my co-investigator’s limp arm.

                Electrical impulses spiked my nerves. I’d never seen an emergency team do that. The first medic finished a cursory check for broken bones, then both men heaved Matt onto the stretcher and hustled him through the crowded ballroom.

                Juggling on one four-inch heel and one bare foot, I elbowed my way through the crowd after them. “Which hospital?”

                They mumbled something incoherent and disappeared through the hotel’s exterior door.

                Lord, please take care of Matt. He’s a good friend. Keep him safe.

                I started after them.

                The blond wrestler clutched my arm, stopping me from following them out to the ambulance. Then he smiled crookedly, straightened his bow tie, and righted his cummerbund. “Don’t look so worried, the PI’s in good hands.”

                I stiffened. “How do you know Matt’s a PI?”

                The wrestler frowned and clamped his lips.

                Shivers snaked my spine. Something was very wrong.


About the Author

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Anne Greene lives in the quaint antiquing town of McKinney, Texas, a few miles north of Dallas. Her husband is a retired Colonel, Army Special Forces. Her little brown and white Shih Tzu, Lily Valentine, shares her writing space, curled at her feet.

Besides her first love, writing, she enjoys family, friends, travel, reading, and way too many other things to mention. Life is good. Jesus said, “I am come that you might have life and that you might have it more abundantly.”

Anne’s an award-winning author of twenty-three books. She loves writing about alpha heroes who aren’t afraid to fall on their knees in prayer, and about gutsy heroines. She hopes her stories transport you to awesome new worlds and touch your heart.


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Beasts

Title: Beasts
Author: Ana Levley
Genre: Dystopian SciFi
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR
Blurb: What if your whole life was a lie?
The future seems utopian, with telegraphic technology that connects everyone. People speak through feeling, and there is peace, or so Atlia thought. Atlia did not intend on doing anything other than becoming a leader until she was framed for her father’s telecide (murder by telegraphic). When sentenced to the farm she learns the darkest secrets her society has been hiding, even her family. Which will she choose? Each path is as dangerous as the next as she uncovers the map of lies.
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I have always been a storyteller. When I was little it was through art, video, and writing that I loved to express the tales that burst forth from my head. My hands shook as I held the camera for the first time, I remember its weight. Now I can seamlessly film without shaking. My writing is where I hope to first tell the unique stories and then I hope to show them in film.
I finally at age 30 have written my first novel “Beasts” that will be published on Amazon on August 20th. I am so excited to introduce totally different worlds, animals, perspectives, and characters into your life. I hope that my writing moves people to act and see real issues differently, and that it will make people think hard about what they currently are doing. I hope it challenges people to be the heroes of their own lives, as well as others.  May we all be heroes striving to bring peace to a world that needs it so much.
 
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I wish I could remember the light. You might not care right now about the light, but when it is taken from you, when you start to forget how it looks, that’s when you realize how important it is. If you listen, you may be able to keep this luxury. If not, you may find yourself without it forever.
  Light is a gift. The light that sways before your eyes as you rise, or even the sunrise dotting the Earth as it wakes – reflections I believe they were called. You really don’t know what light is, how much of a blessing it is until it is taken from you. Imagine. Everything dark. A desolate gaping hole of nothingness. The lack of light fills you with a feeling of emptiness. The darkness consumes you as you try as hard as you can to hold onto anything, even if they are just memories of light. Even if you close your eyes, your mind tries to trick you that it’s still there. With small bursts of blue, yellow, so faint, and the illusion of light it satisfies you just a little. If I could show you everything, it would blind you.
  So, I will start with the small pieces, the shiny pieces, shimmering with hope until you finish my story. This is the story of Atlia, the blackened, the deserter, the murderer, the martyr, the whatever you would like to call me. To me, I am just a person who has a choice to make, a decision that could change my life forever, and yours. 

Angel With Steel Wings


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Women of Courage Series
Historical Romance / Women’s Fiction
Publisher: Elk Lake Publishing

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DESPITE THE DANGER

At a time when most people in American have never flown in an airplane, spunky Mandy McCabe test-pilots repaired war planes as part of the Women Air Force Service Pilots. If the Army Air Corp shuts down the WASP program, she must return to life in her hard-scrabble home and face her past.



DESPITE THE OPPOSITION

Army Air Corp Major Harvey Applegate lost his WASP wife test-piloting planes and doesn’t want any more women killed on his watch. He fights to close the WASP program. Women aren’t designed to fight wars. Men fight to protect women freedom, and the American way of life.



DESPITE THE RAGING WAR

This World War II romance shows Steel Magnolias meeting Band of Brothers. Can Mandy escape from her past? Can a man burdened with memories of death agree to added danger for the new woman in his life? Will their new love survive the test of opposing desires and the pain and separation of war?




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Excerpt
CHAPTER 1



“She’s late! Where is she?” Insides churning like pistons, Major Harvey Applegate stared hard at the tiny blonde standing in front of him, her hands clenched behind her back.

Her chin trembled. She looked so young he wanted to pat her on the back and send her to the hangar for a hot chocolate, but majors didn’t do that. So he gritted his teeth. He was supposed to show respect for the WASPs invading his air base. That was asking a lot. They were young and unpredictable. Men fought wars to protect American women. Men died in wars. Not women. He restrained his impulse to pound the metal side of the wet hangar and slapped his thigh with his cap instead. 

“I can’t lose another WASP on my watch. Not two in as many days.” He plowed his hand through his short, dripping hair, frowned, and reminded himself not to get his underwear wrapped around an axle.

“She’s only half an hour late, sir.” Doreen’s lower lip quivered. 

“Didn’t that pilot get the word this morning?” Harvey wrung his cap. He wouldn’t take his temper out on this innocent blonde. 

“No, sir. Corporal Jones ran up to tell me we were grounded twenty minutes after she was in the air.”

Above the wail of the wind, Harvey picked up the faint lilting song of a Merlin engine running slightly rough. He gazed toward the windsock blowing straight out and pivoted toward the landing strip. A P-51 came in fast and low, circled the field, made a perfect three-point landing, and taxied to a halt.

He snapped his cap onto his head. He didn’t have many men who could land in a crosswind that well. Even he would have had trouble. Boots splashing water, he dashed across the tarmac and reached the craft before the propeller stopped spinning. The canopy of the single-seater flew open. A slight figure, clad in a man’s too-large flight suit, climbed out onto the rain-slick wing. He stretched up his arms and grabbed her waist to lower her to the ground. Even with the weight of her boots, flight jacket, and gear, this one felt light in his arms.

The pilot glanced at his insignia. If she’d actually been military, she’d have had to salute. But she wasn’t, and she didn’t. The minute her feet touched ground, the slender woman pulled off her goggles and gazed up at him. Wide blue eyes circled with goggle marks.

Another starry-eyed angel. Harvey swallowed hard. His chest hurt. She looked so vulnerable.  He scowled, picturing that slender nose smashed and those winsome lips closed forever. He couldn’t face seeing another woman killed. He wanted these women off his air base. Wanted no more sleep lost over these young ladies. Wanted no more sending them into danger. Wanted no more funerals that tore him apart. He slapped the cowl of the plane so hard she jumped. No more charred women in downed planes. Trista took on a man’s job, and look how that turned out. Agony pierced his chest. He shook his head, trying to dislodge the memory.

“I’ll see you grounded!” Harvey thundered. “You were due back half an hour ago. Can’t you women obey rules?”   

Ruby lips rounded into an O of surprise. Her sapphire eyes widened. Her dark brows arched. “What?”

“Women pilots!” He slammed his fist into his palm. “I’ll shut down this program.”

Her brows furrowed. Her chin poked out. Her hands flew to her hips. She looked ready to jump all over him. As long as she was alive and safe, he didn’t care. He could handle her. “You head-in-the-clouds dreamers think you’re on your own private missions. This base is no place for a woman!”

“You men have such a high opinion of yourselves. Women could fly in combat, but you keep us home.” Flames tinted her wet cheeks. “You won’t admit our country desperately needs us to fly these planes.” She stressed each word passionately.

Harvey could tell she wanted to say more, but she clamped her lips. He glared.

She glowered back.

Tough if she thought he had an inflated opinion of himself. Better that than for her to guess he had a soft spot for these female pilots. “I don’t want any more dead women.”

She cringed. Her face crumpled.

Why hadn’t he kept his trap shut? Even on a base this big, she probably knew the missing WASP pilot. But he’d wanted to scare her into obeying the rules. Obedience gave the women pilots some semblance of safety.

She recovered from her first reaction and blazed. “Connie’s alive. I know it. And rumor patrol says it’s just a couple of you big shots who want to shut us down. Most fellas like us testing repaired planes and towing targets. They want to be free to fly combat.”

He shrugged. She was right. And he couldn’t dredge up a comeback. 

She stomped stiff-legged toward the open hangar door, parachute bumping her backside, rain blurring his view. 

“Feisty pilot, you’re the kind gets yourself killed,” he yelled just as she reached the hangar door. 


About the Author

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Anne Greene lives in the quaint antiquing town of McKinney, Texas, a few miles north of Dallas. Her husband is a retired Colonel, Army Special Forces. Her little brown and white Shih Tzu, Lily Valentine, shares her writing space, curled at her feet.

Besides her first love, writing, she enjoys family, friends, travel, reading, and way too many other things to mention. Life is good. Jesus said, “I am come that you might have life and that you might have it more abundantly.”

Anne’s an award-winning author of twenty-three books. She loves writing about alpha heroes who aren’t afraid to fall on their knees in prayer, and about gutsy heroines. She hopes her stories transport you to awesome new worlds and touch your heart.

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Purchase Links

RABT Book Tours & PR

The Way You Are

~ ♥ ~ ♥ ~ ♥ ~ ♥ ~ BOOK SPOTLIGHT ~ ♥ ~ ♥ ~ ♥ ~ ♥ ~

The Way You Are (Carolina Connections Book 5) by Sylvie Stewart Romance

BUY NOW – https://amzn.to/2Pycgp4

SylvieStewart #CarlinaConnections #TheWayYouAre

Hosted by Itsy Bitsy Book Bits

Genre – Romantic Comedy / Contemporary Romance

Page count – 224 pages
Publishing Company – Rolling Hearts Press

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42415819-the-way-you-are

“They say nice guys always finish last. I say the only place that should apply is in the
bedroom—it’s just good manners, after all.” – Brett MacKinnon, nice guy and frequent resident

of the friend zone

LIV: There are really only three things I need in life: sex, baseball, and winning. My hot
boyfriend and season tickets take care of the first two, while I always do my best to cover the
last. So developing an unexpected crush on a new friend is more than a little inconvenient. I
don’t have anything but friendship to offer Brett, but with the way he looks at me, he has me

wishing I did.

BRETT: I’ve been put in the friend zone so often, they’ve got a sandwich named after me. You’d
think I’d be used to it by now. But when it comes to the delectable Liv, I’m determined to ditch
the friend zone and show her I’m boyfriend material. Too bad the position’s already been filled

by a ball-playing caveman who could flatten me with his pinky.

What will it take to show Liv that nice guys can be more than just friends, and that love is the

one game truly worth winning?

~ AMAZON ~

USA Today bestselling author Sylvie Stewart is addicted to Romantic Comedy and
Contemporary Romance, and she’s not looking for a cure. She hails from the great state of North
Carolina, so it’s no surprise that most of her books are set in the Tar Heel state. She’s a wife to a
hilarious dude and mommy to ten-year-old twin boys who tend to take after their father in every
way. Sylvie often wonders if they’re actually hers, but then she remembers being a human

incubator for a gazillion months. Ah, good times.

Sylvie began publishing when her kids started elementary school, and she loves sharing her
stories with readers and hopefully making them laugh and swoon a bit along the way. If she’s not
in her comfy green writing chair, she’s probably camping or kayaking with her family or having
a glass of wine while binge-watching Hulu. Or she’s been kidnapped—so what are you doing

just sitting there?!!

AUTHOR INTERVIEW WITH SYLVIE STEWART

Live December 22nd & 23rd Click HERE for Giveaway

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