Sunday, March 25, 2012

Wishing for Someday Soon Blog Hop!

Today is an exciting day, my friends.  In just a few short days the long awaited release of Wishing for Someday Soon by the amazingly talented and lovely, Tiffany King will be here! To celebrate this fantastic book's release Tiffany has put together a blog hop to get everyone pumped up.

If you haven't yet heard about Wishing for Someday Soon is time to get in the know. This is a read you won't want to miss!

Book Synopsis:
Seventeen year old Katelyn Richards is a stronger person than anyone will ever know, and that is just the way she wants it. Behind her normal fa├žade, lies the reality of a broken home life. Thanks to her abusive mother, a string of deadbeat stepfathers, and an unsympathetic system, Katelyn has learned that the only one she can count on is herself. Her life’s mission has become to shield her nine year old brother, Kevin, and to give him the future that they both wish for. A life with no more abuse, no worries about where their next meal will come from, and no more wondering if they will have a roof over their heads.

When her mother moves them again, this time to a small town in Montana, Katelyn’s resolve is shaken when she meets Max, a cute boy from her new school who gets a glimpse into her real world. Max slowly manages to break through Katelyn’s wall of distrust, stirring up feelings she never saw coming. Now with her world more complicated than she ever intended, Katelyn struggles with the decision to follow her heart into the arms of the first boy she has ever loved. A decision that could risk the promise she made to protect Kevin, and to give them the ‘someday soon’ that is so close within their grasp.

Tiffany has provided an excerpt from the book on each blog participating in the blog tour. My excerpt is listed below (and it is INCREDIBLE!). After you read the excerpt will find instructions on how you can win various prizes, including a Kindle copy of Wishing for Someday Soon!

“Hey, what took so long?” Max asked, startling me.
“What are you doing here?” I asked a little defensively as I tried to slide the assessment in between the pages of my text without him noticing.
“I told Mr. Graves maybe I should check on you, in case you got lost,” he said, shooting me a mischievous smile.
“Seriously, and he fell for that line?” I asked, unable to resist laughing. “I’m pretty sure you told me earlier that the school’s layout was a piece of cake.”
“He doesn’t know that,” he said, trying to appear innocent.
“Well, I know I’m new, but even I realize our class is only two doors down,” I said, still laughing.
So, what did Hanson want?” He asked, changing the subject.
“He wants me to fill out an assessment,” I said sighing, not knowing how much he had heard outside the door. All the honesty at this new school was making me slightly nervous. I had gone three and a half months at my last school without anyone getting a flicker of what my life was like. Now, in less than twenty-four hours, the cutest guy I had ever talked to, knew a whole lot more about me than I liked.
“Hey, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to be nosey. Anyway, it’s no big deal. Anyone starting school midway through the year might need some help,” Max said, misreading my sigh.

Wishing For Someday Soon Blog Hop:
Collect the letters from each of the excerpts provided by all the blogs listed below and then head back to to plug them into the secret phrase. You could win a Wishing For Someday Soon t-shirt, mouse pad or a signed copy of Wishing For Someday Soon!!! Take the time to leave a comment on each blog you visit and you could win a Kindle copy of Wishing For Someday Soon on the day it releases!!

Have fun and good luck!

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Thursday, March 22, 2012

YA Indie Carnival: The Hunger Games meet Andre, the Oracle of War!

Welcome to Amy Jones Young Adult Fantasy Fiction and the thirty - fourth post in the YA Indie Carnival. The carnival is designed for authors, readers and reviewers of YA Indie books. Each Friday this team of YA Indies will post on a common theme.

This week's post theme is The Hunger Games: Which Character from The Soul Quest Trilogy could be a formidable competiter in The Hunger Games?

This is such a fun post theme, I can hardly stand it! And, did I mention that I absolutely love The Hunger Games! The entire series by Suzanne Collins totally rocks! I am so stoked to see this movie!
OK, so which one of my characters would be best suited to kick some serious tail in The Hunger Games? That would definitely have to be Andre, the Oracle of War. Here is a little excerpt from Soul Quest featuring Andre. Let me know if you think he would fair OK in battle.

"Why didn't he use the portal? Isn't he in Arcadia?" asked Brayan.

"Yes child, but he can not use the portal." she said.
We all shrugged. I caught a glimpse of movement out of the corner of my eye. To the east, silhouetted by the full moon, I could see the outline of an expansive set of wings framing a large body.

"Look." I pointed toward the moon and watched Brayan, Laith and Meena shift their gaze. A huge grin spread across Brayan's face.

"He's a centaur… or close enough!" he shouted.

“He's a satyr.” Meena clarified.

The large and handsome man - like beast descended from the sky and landed in the meadow. His hooves sounded like thunder against the Earth and churned up dirt and dust with each stride. He was a massive tower even next to Brayan in his centaur form. His long black braided hair whipped like tassels in the wind against the curling, bone colored horns protruding from either side of his head. His eyes and skin were nearly as black as his hair. A shining vest of golden armor shielded his chest and a matching bow and set of quivers were strapped to his back. A gold, metallic cord criss-crossed his chest plate to secure them in place. In his hand he carried a large, dangerous looking spear. The long handle appeared to be made of solid wood and its blade was shimmering gold. It looked very old despite its luster. Muscles bulged from every part of Andre. Unlike Brayan, the lower portion of this creature was that of a ram. He looked like a sheep on steroids. The muscles on his body were covered in a thick black, charcoal colored fleece. His legs were short but stout and compact and his hooves were a glistening pearly white. Every step he took was like a symphony of elegant grace and strength. It was obvious why he didn't use the portal now. He was enormous and would never have fit.

"Andre, I presume?" Brayan asked politely. He was still smiling.

"Aye, Lad. You be Brayan." he nodded. "Halo ta ye too Laith, Liv and Meena." Andre continued. "Me Lord Hala saintt may ta perpare ye for wat is ta come." he explained in his thick Scottish Gailic.

He reached behind his back and retrieved a black leather bag. He loosened the noose - like knot securing the cords and grabbed several objects inside. He handed one to each of us. It was a scepter made of a material I did not recognize. Emanating from the scepter was a sword - like white flame. The flame was more beautiful than any I had ever seen.

"Des is a blaze fer ye." he nodded at us to see if we understood.

"A Blaze…" I confirmed. "What does it do?" I asked him. His eyes grew wide in surprise.

"Ha! Des Blaze keeps yer hart ta beaten,' lassie." he shouted. "Des scepter tis chissed frum de star doost an de flem frum de Light." he grinned.

"This flame comes from the Light, the Light with in the Maze of Mirrors? Is this the same Light that we were all created from?" Meena asked excitedly. Andre nodded again.

"Tis de same, lassie." he winked. He pointed down toward Meena's flame and said, "Des flem keels de Daeva an der likeniss." he nodded.

"Whoa, this is cooler than cool." Laith said.
"Aye, lad, ye be warriors!" he shouted jutting his dangerous looking golden spear upward toward the sky. "Bet furst ye gots ta git yerselves riddy." he nodded.

Personally, I think Andre could kick butt at The Hunger Games? Do you have favorite fictional character that could be deemed as combat worthy? Leave me a comment and tell me about them!

Before you go make sure you visit the rest of my carni friends in the carnival. I can't wait to read about their Hunger Game participants. I've got to see how Andre will fair in the mix of the latest contestants.

1.Laura A. H. Elliott author of Winnemucca & 13 on Halloween, Book 1 in the Teen Halloween Series2.Bryna Butler, author Midnight Guardian series
3.Heather Self4.T. R. Graves, Author of The Warrior Series
5.Suzy Turner, author of The Raven Saga6.Cheri Schmidt, author of the Fateful Trilogy
7.Rachel Coles, author of Into The Ruins, geek mom blog 8.K. C. Blake, author of Vampires Rule and Crushed
9.Patti Larsen, The Hunted series and The Hayle Coven series10.Amy Maurer Jones, Author of The Soul Quest Trilogy
11.Dani Snell's Refracted Light Reviews 12.Fisher Amelie, author of The Understorey
13.M. Leighton, Blood Like Poison Series, Madly, The Reaping 14.Kimberly Kinrade, Bits of You & Pieces of Me, Forbidden Mind
15.Madeline Smoot, Missing, Summer Shorts, and The Girls16.Cidney Swanson, author of Rippler
17.Gwenn Wright, author of Filter18.TG Ayer
19.Melissa Pearl, Author of The Time Spirit Trilogy20.Heather M. White, author of The Destiny Saga
21.Roots in Myth, PJ Hoover22.Courtney Cole Writes
23.Four Seasons of Writing: Variable like the Employment
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Friday, March 16, 2012

YA Indie Carnival; Lucky Irish!

Welcome to Amy Jones Young Adult Fantasy Fiction and the thirty - third post in the YA Indie Carnival. The carnival is designed for authors, readers and reviewers of YA Indie books. Each Friday this team of YA Indies will post on a common theme.

This week's post theme is the Lucky Irish!
Since tomorrow is Saint Patty's Day we have decided to post about a scene with lucky circumstances. I chose a scene from The Guardians of Souls where one of  the teen Oracles, Laith Lightfoot is having a particularly lucky day.

Warning/Spoiler alert!
At the end of Soul Quest Laith is devastated by the loss of someone very special and near and dear to his heart. In this scene Laith receives some much needed relief from the emotional torment he has been carrying.

Our laughter was silenced quickly when we entered the shiny coffee house. In the far corner of the cafe sat our four Guardians and a beautiful Shadowless girl with long, flowing ringlets trailing down both sides of her neck. She looked up to see the four of us and smiled shyly across the distance.

"Melissa?" Laith squeaked out in disbelief.

"You didn't really think I'd bail on that easily, did you?" she smiled coyly as she flicked her translucent curls behind her neck.

Melissa Small was sitting before us in Shadowless form in Stardust's Cafe.

I ran across the coffee shop to embrace my sister, Melissa and stepped straight through her. She laughed at me as I nearly stumbled into the wall. Ordinarily this would have annoyed me but not today. I could feel my heart begin to piece itself back together. I had my sister back. Well, sort of anyway, I had not lost her entirely at least.

"Be careful, you big oaf." she insulted me, but there was affection in her voice. I smiled at her.
"It sure is good to see you again, Melissa." I said.

She returned my smile as she wrapped her arms around my neck and hugged me. It felt strange to hug her in this new form. She wasn't really solid and I could tell that if I hugged her too tightly she would literally slip through my fingers... and the rest of me. Still, she felt warm and I could feel her heart beating as well as her breath in my ear.

She spoke to me, "This isn't your fault, Laith. All of you tried to warn me, but by the time I decided to believe you it was too late."

"I should have tried harder. Now you will never see Mom and Dad, the DA or any of your friends at Forest Hills ever again." I sulked.

"No, not never, just not for awhile." she comforted me. "

I hope you enjoyed my favorite lucky scene from The Soul Quest Trilogy (thus far...). Now, I'm dieing to know what your favorite lucky scene is from your will want to discover the magic ourselves for sure. I can't wait to hear about your lucky books!
Please remember to stop by the rest of my carni friend's blogs in the carnival. I know I can't wait to read all about their luck!

I'm glad you joined me today on the blog! I hope everyone has a fantastic St. Patrick's Day!

Please be sweet and retweet (and post to Facebook)! Pretty please! :)

Thursday, March 8, 2012

You've gotta' read, Don't Fear the Reaper by Michelle Muto!

Today I would like to introduce you to a lovely book by a fantastic indie author. The book I am speaking is Don’t Fear the Reaper and the amazing author of this book is Michelle Muto. I, for one, have this book at the top of my TBR pile and can’t wait to dive into what I have been repeatedly hearing is an extraordinary read.
Don't Fear the Reaper

So, what’s the book about? Here is a brief description:

Grief-stricken by the murder of her twin, Keely Morrison is convinced suicide is her ticket to eternal peace and a chance to reunite with her sister. When Keely succeeds in taking her own life, she discovers death isn’t at all what she expected. Instead, she’s trapped in a netherworld on Earth and her only hope for reconnecting with her sister and navigating the afterlife is a bounty-hunting reaper and a sardonic, possibly unscrupulous, demon. But when the demon offers Keely her greatest temptation—revenge on her sister's murderer—she must uncover his motives and determine who she can trust. Because, as Keely soon learns, both reaper and demon are keeping secrets and she fears the worst is true—that her every decision will change how, and with whom, she spends eternity.

Still, not tempted? How can this be? OK, this will lure you in for sure. Michelle has graciously provided me with the first chapter of this marvelous story. Here is your tempting teaser!

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil, for they are with me. 

I repeated my version of the psalm as I watched the ribbon of blood drift from my wrist. I’d hoped it would be a distraction—something to stop me from wondering what my sister’s dying thoughts had been. Exhaling slowly, I let the emptiness consume me. 

Jordan had kept my secrets and I had kept hers. In the end, it came down to just one secret between us that took her life. Now, it would take mine. I should have said something, but nothing I said or did now could bring her back or make anyone understand what she meant to me.

Are you here, Jordan? Are you with me? Tell me about heaven...

I told myself Jordan was gone, never coming back, but her memories continued to haunt me. I had no idea if there even was an afterlife. If God existed, I was convinced he had given up on me. Not once did I sense he’d heard a single one of my prayers. I wasn’t asking for the world—I only wanted to know if my sister was safe and at peace. What was so hard about that? 

She should still be here. It wasn’t fair. 

I’d been the difficult one—much more than Jordan. For a while, I’d even gotten into drugs. Mom and Dad had worried I’d get Jordan into drugs, too. But I wouldn’t. Not ever. Besides, that part of my life had been over long before Jordan’s death. A small gargoyle tattoo on my left shoulder was all that remained of my previous lifestyle.

Mom and Dad started treating me differently after Jordan’s funeral two months ago. She and I were twins, so I understood how hard it was for them to look at me and not see her. Sometimes, they wouldn’t look at me at all. Mom went to the psychiatrist, but no one asked if I needed to talk to someone about what happened. No one asked if I needed sleeping pills or antidepressants. Yeah, sure. Don’t give the former addict pills of any sort. 

Not one person saw the all-consuming suffering that gnawed at my soul. Why couldn’t anyone see? Jordan had been more than my sister—she’d been my Samson, my strength. I would have done anything for her, and yet, I’d failed her. I wasn’t the one who’d killed her, but I might as well have been. How could I ever live with that? My heart had a stillness to it since her death. 

I shall fear no evil.

I couldn’t very well recite the first part of Psalm 23 because it said I shall not want, and I did want. I wanted to go back in time. I wanted my sister back. Clearly, goodness and mercy were never going to be part of my life ever again. In my mind, I saw myself walking through the iron gates of hell with demons cackling gleefully all around.

I didn’t want to die. Not really. I was just tired and didn’t know of another way to stop the pain. Doctors removed a bad appendix. Dentists pulled rotten teeth. What was I supposed to do when my very essence hurt, when the cancer I’d come to call depression made every decent memory agonizingly unbearable? 

Before I’d gotten down to cutting my wrist (I managed to only cut one), I’d taken a few swigs of Dad’s tequila—the good kind he kept in the basement freezer. I’d used another swig or two to chase down the remainder of Mom’s sleeping pills in the event I failed to hit an artery or vein. Then I’d set the bottle on the ledge of the tub in case I needed further liquid encouragement. Instead of using a knife or a razor, I attached a cutting blade to my Dad’s Dremel. The Dremel was faster, I reasoned. More efficient. 

It would have been easier to OD, I suppose. But I felt closer to my sister this way, to suffer as she’d suffered.

I recited the line from Psalms 23 again. It had become my personal mantra. 

The words resonated in my parents’ oversized bathroom. I’d chosen theirs because the Jacuzzi tub was larger than the tub in the hall bathroom. Jordan and I used to take bubble baths together in this same tub when we were little.

Innocence felt like a lifetime ago. I searched the bathroom for bubble bath but came up short. Soap might have made the laceration hurt more so it was probably just as well. Besides, the crimson streaming from my wrist like watercolor on silk was oddly mesmerizing. 

The loneliness inside proved unrelenting, and the line from the psalms made me feel better. I prayed for the agony inside me to stop. I argued with God. Pleaded. But after all was said and done, I just wanted the darkness to call me home.

I tried not to think of who would find my body or who’d read the note I’d left. I blamed myself not only for failing Jordan, but for failing my parents, too. 

My lifeline to this existence continued to bleed out into the warm water. Killing myself had been harder than I’d imagined. I hadn’t anticipated the searing fire racing through my veins. I reached for the tequila with my good arm but couldn’t quite manage. Tears welled in my eyes. 

Part of me foolishly felt Jordan was here. The other part feared she wasn’t.

Give me a sign, Sis. Just one.

I imagined seeing my parents at my funeral—their gaunt faces, red-eyed and sleepless. How could I do this to them? Wasn’t the devastation of losing one child enough? 

No. Stop. A voice in my head screamed. Don’t do this. Don’t. Please...

I shifted my body, attempted to get my uncooperative legs under me. I could see the phone on my parents’ nightstand. I could make it that far. Had to. The voice was right. I didn’t want to do this. I felt disorientated, dizzy. Darkness crept along the edges of my vision. Focusing became difficult. A sweeping shadow of black caught my attention. Someone stood in the bathroom—not my sister. A man. Had I managed to call 911? I couldn’t remember getting out of the tub. And why’d I get back in? Did I use a towel? 

Mom is going to be pissed when she sees the blood I’ve tracked all over the bedroom carpet. 

“I’m sorry,” I told the man in black. 

“It’s okay, Keely. Don’t be afraid.” Not my father’s voice. It was softer, with a hint of sorrow. Distant. Fleeting. Later, I’d feel embarrassed about this, but for now I was safe from the nothing I’d almost become. My teeth clattered from the chill. My eyelids fluttered in time with my breaths. The tub water had turned the color of port wine. The ribbons, the pretty, red watercolor ribbons were gone.

Dull gray clouded my sight.

A voice whispered to me, and my consciousness floated to the surface again. 

“—okay, Keely.”

Cold. So cold.

“I’m right here.”

There was no fear in me as the man bent forward, his face inches from mine. He was my father’s age, and yet strangely older. His eyes were, almost iridescent. The irises were rimmed in a fine line of black, and the creases etched at the corners reminded me of sunbeams as he gave me a weak smile. The oddly. Dressed. Paramedic. A warm hand reached into the water and cradled mine. My fingers clutched his. I sighed, feeling myself floating, drifting. Light—high and intense exploded before me. No! Too much. Too much! I shuddered and labored to catch my breath, but it wouldn’t come. 

Finally, the comfort of darkness rose to greet me.

OMG! Wasn’t that flippin’ awesome?  You KNOW that it was. OK, now hurry along to your favorite book buying hub and click the buy now button, folks! No dilly dallying…

Thanks you so much, Michelle for the sneak peek into Don’t Fear the Reaper! You’ve got yourself a best seller here! I just know it!

If you would like to learn more about Michelle Muto and her writing please check out the list of links below!

Where to buy/download sample chapters:

Connect with Michelle:

Have you already read Michelle Muto’s Don’t Fear the Reaper or her Book of Lost Souls? If you have, please leave a comment and tell us why you love Michelle and/or her books. I love Michelle because she sweet, crazy and one of a kind!

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