Spotlight On: Hidden Series, by M. Lathan



Title: Hidden (Hidden Series Book One)
Author: M. Lathan
Genre: YA Paranormal
Sixteen-year-old Leah Grant has given up on being normal. She’d settle for stopping the voices in her head, intrusive visions of the future, and better odds of making it to her seventeenth birthday.

That’s the thing about pretending to be human in a world where magic used to exist – at any moment, her cover could be blown and she’ll be burned to death like the rest of the witches.

Everything changes when she loses control of her powers and flees the orphanage she grew up in. She desperately wants to be invisible but finds her face plastered on every news channel as humans panic over the possible resurgence of her kind. And now the hunters won’t give up until they find her.

Making friends for the first time in her life and falling in love with one of them drives her to discover why she is unlike any being she’s ever met – human or otherwise. The dangerous powers inside of her that would repel Nathan, her new, handsome reason for living, are priceless to some. The locked up forever kind of priceless. And to others, they are too dangerous to allow her to live.

Let’s hope she can stay hidden.

Hidden (Hidden Series Book One):


Title: Lost (Hidden Series Book Two)
Author: M. Lathan
Genre: YA Paranormal
Three months ago, Christine Grant found herself, love, and impossible friends, while losing the memories of the biggest piece of her past.

Now, her powers are spinning out of control and must be tamed by the woman who saved the world, the same woman Christine is predicted to kill in less than a month.

Wanting to punish catty orphans was just the beginning. It’s only a matter of time before she discovers that the world is not as safe from her as she hoped it was.

Lost (Hidden Series Book Two)



Title: Shattered (Hidden Series Book Three)
Author: M. Lathan
Genre: YA Paranormal
Christine and Nathan’s quest for normal may rip them apart….

Someone as powerful as Christine Gavin cannot afford to be reckless, and after accidentally ending the world, her caretakers give her something she has wanted for years–a normal life without psychic powers. But it comes at a great price, one her boyfriend has to pay.

A dangerous hunter plotting to kill her and the world growing closer to another magical war are little things compared to what fate has in store for her next.

Shattered (Hidden Series Book Three)

Author Bio



M. Lathan lives in San Antonio with her husband and mini-schnauzer. She enjoys writing and has a B.S. in Psych and a Masters in Counseling. Her passion is a blend of her two interests – creating new worlds and stocking them with crazy people. She enjoys reading anything with interesting characters and writing in front of a window while asking rhetorical questions … like her idol Carrie Bradshaw.

Book Excerpts

Hidden (Hidden Series Book One)

Sienna snatched last week’s Chemistry test from my desk. I hadn’t turned it over. I knew it was a D minus.

She cackled and passed it around.

“Leah, you would think someone who spends most of her time alone would have better grades,” she said. Her birds laughed on cue. “What do you do all day? Obviously not study.” She gasped slowly like she’d gotten a revelation in that blonde head of hers. “You fantasize about us, don’t you? You probably sleep in Whit’s old bed to feel close to her.”

Laughter spread around the room like an airborne disease. Disease. I shivered. That was an intriguing thought; I could almost hear the sound their bodies would make against the floor when it hit.

“Leah, come on. Say something. Scream at me, it’s been a while. At least cry,” Sienna said, laughing and leaning into my desk, closer to danger.

I didn’t cry. I never cry. And if I were going to, it wouldn’t be because of Sienna. I had bigger problems. I’d just broken a promise I’d made to God to not think about hurting His people, His children. And today was not the day to piss Him off.

My old roommate, Whitney Nguyen, graciously returned my test as she cackled with the rest of the birds. She liked the idea of me pining over her, but she knew I didn’t spend my free time thinking about her or sleeping in her old bed. After fourteen years of hard labor as my roommate, she’d given up on being friends or me being remotely normal. The current theory to explain my oddness was that I was in love with all of the girls and consumed by lust.

As long as they didn’t know it was magic.

Lost (Hidden Series Book Two)


Fear stole my breath as I plummeted into frigid water. I flailed my arms and legs, uselessly trying to swim against the current. The haunting voice of a child sang “The Star-Spangled Banner” as I sank deeper.

I fought my way to the surface only to be taken again. The little girl droned, “And the rockets’ red glare,” as water rushed into my lungs.

I wasn’t alone. A blurry figure struggled near me, both of us sinking, drowning in red tinted water. Blood. It swirled with the suffocating blue, an inescapable villain dragging us deeper and deeper.

We were two helpless bodies adrift in a world with no air or hope, no chance of survival. The white lights glowing beneath us looked welcoming and safe. The figure gave in. Its lifeless body sank towards the lights as the little girl sang, “And the home of the brave.”

Chapter One

I woke up, pouring sweat, in Nathan’s bed.

With his eyes closed and mouth open, he rolled away and yanked the blanket off of me, attending to my needs in his sleep. I shrugged off the creepy dream of me drowning. Over the last three months, I’d dreamed plenty of things that hadn’t happened. Nate had held me underwater in the pool earlier. I was sure that moment had just followed me to sleep. The odds of it being a vision were low.

It had been almost two months since I stopped letting myself have them or use any of my powers. They were getting worse as I used them openly for little things. I would try to move something, and it wouldn’t just lift. It would slam into the wall before I felt it moving. I didn’t know mental powers could grow, develop even more than they already were. They were getting faster, stronger, and wilder, so I was back to suppressing them like I had at St. Catalina. Life was simpler that way, normal. Or as normal as living with three magical beings that should be extinct could get.

I closed my eyes to force myself back to sleep, and an angry snore rattled Nate’s throat. I reached on his nightstand for my phone. He wouldn’t be able to deny this one. Another series of snores ripped through the silent pool house just as I pressed record. I laughed, and he opened his eyes.

“Smile, baby,” I said. He groaned and reached for the phone.

“What are you doing?”

“Oh, nothing. Just collecting evidence.”

He wrestled my new phone from my hands and held it out of my reach. “How do I stop the video?”

“Like I’d tell you.”

He grunted and threw the phone to the foot of his bed. “That thing is too expensive to be so complicated,” he said.

“It’s not complicated. It’s probably just made for humans and you’re-”

He grabbed me and wedged his fingers under my arms before I could tease him about the side of him that barks. “I’m what? What am I, Chris?” I squealed, flopping around in his arms like a dying fish.

“Handsome!” I offered, to end the tickle attack.


“Smart. Kind. Loving. Sexy!” He relaxed his fingers and slid them from my armpits to my back. “Which one did it?” I asked.

“Sexy,” he whispered and kissed me. And that was really all it ever took to kick things off between us. Steamy kisses, roaming hands.

That was how we’d spent most of our time during our three-month-old relationship – in my bed, in his bed, in the common areas when we had the house to ourselves. I kept waiting for this to get old, his lips on mine, but every kiss felt like the first, and like I’d die if it were the last.

Shattered (Hidden Series Book Three)


Love makes you do crazy things. It makes you lurk in shadows, duck behind buildings, compromise everything you thought you knew about yourself. All I know now is that I love him. All I know now is that his soul and my soul are meant to be one.

That’s why I’m here in the shadows, on yet another mission to get the life I should rightfully have. But I didn’t inherit patience, so this waiting is driving me insane.

The moon is fighting to be seen through the other lights in the sky. I wish I could see the beauty in it. I remember Emma looking up to the sky in awe like it was this magical thing, naturally perfect. When I look at something like the moon, I want to change it, make it better, make it suit me even more. And now I know I’ve lost my mind because I’m thinking about the moon. I hate waiting.

But I stay there, quiet as a mouse, barely breathing.

Then, as if I’d done enough for God to smile on me, the impossible happened right before my eyes. A smile stretched across my face as I listened and finally learned the value of patience.

Chapter One – Nathan

I must be quiet. Even my breaths are too loud.

That was how I felt around John, even as he lay there dead. Lydia Shaw’s morgue was about as silent as our home used to be. Don’t make too much noise, Nathan. John needs silence to read his paper, Nathan. He’d turned our home into a prison–an eerily quiet, suburban prison.

I stepped towards the smelly lump under the white sheet and breathed slowly, silently out of my mouth. He reeked of magic.

I’d heard death had a way of pardoning sins and turning awful people into saints. That wouldn’t be true for me. I’d hated John when he was living and breathing and ruining my life, and I still hated him now. His stubby toes were exposed and blue. Blood no longer pumped through his veins, bringing life to the feet he used to annoyingly tap on the floor for hours, and I still wanted to punch him in the face.

Lydia nodded to the body, asking if I wanted the sheet raised. I shook my head and moved on to the next lump. My mother’s body barely made an impression against the sheet. She was all bone, a tragic sort of skinny that made your skin crawl.

I suppressed a shiver. Lydia’s sheets were too short. My mother’s toes were also exposed and blue, but unlike John, I didn’t want to punch her in the face. I stared at her red nail polish that was still perfectly intact, remembering a time when she’d twirled around the kitchen to dry her wet toes while she cleaned.

Two birds, one stone, she’d said. She wasn’t a skeleton in this memory. My mother was once a very beautiful woman, before John wore her down, before the perfect life she so desperately wanted started to eat away at her.

Lydia and Christine were staring at me, either waiting for me to say something about their bodies or their deaths. “You need longer sheets,” was all I could manage.

“I’ll see what I can do about that,” Lydia said. “I will need to keep them here for evidence. After, we can bury or cremate them. Let me know what you decide, and I’ll arrange it.”

I shrugged my shoulders. “Whatever is least inconvenient for you,” I said.

Christine gasped softly and wrapped her arms around her stomach. Her lips trembled like the temperature had dropped thirty degrees suddenly, and she was staring into thin air like she could see something I couldn’t.

Her voice shook when she whispered, “Theresa wants me to-”

“I don’t care what she wants,” I interrupted. She looked crushed, so I softened my tone. “I’m sorry, babe. What I meant was … I don’t want to communicate with her. Now or ever, please.”

If I had known her psychic powers were sensitive enough to actually see or hear the dead, I would’ve asked her to stay upstairs in her mother’s office. Humans like my girlfriend had brains that performed at extremely high levels, making it possible for them to do all sorts of crazy things. While an untrained human mind sensed normal things, her mind–and the minds of psychic hunters–could see the future, hear your thoughts, and know any and everything there was to know. And while a normal human brain told legs and feet to move, she could easily make her brain move me.

I’d thought she could only feel death or the chill of a ghost, but the way she was looking at absolutely nothing made it clear that something, someone, was there.

“She didn’t want to talk to me when she was alive,” I said. “…so she won’t get the chance to do it now.” I ignored the half-truth in that and how much I wanted to apologize to my mom. I’d let Devin St. Jermaine end her life last night, but I was too upset to say anything. After all, John was here with her, and historically that had meant to be quiet.

Chris wandered away from my mother’s body and caught a tear under her eye. I hated seeing her cry, but the panic that stirred in my chest had nothing to do with her tears. I didn’t want my mom to tell Chris anything about our relationship, things that would make me seem like a liar. She’d say she loved me, she’d say we were close, and I didn’t have enough space in my head to sort through the truthful lies I’d told.


Spotlight On: Heart Shaped Rock by Laura Roppe

Heart Shaped Rock
Release Date: May 2014
Summary from Goodreads:
“If you liked the music
collaboration of Maybe Someday, you’ve got to check out Heart Shaped Rock.” —
New York Times best-selling author of Maybe Someday, Colleen Hoover

“Laura Roppé has written a moving and emotional novel of first love, accurately
capturing the voice and mind of a dramatic and emotional sixteen year old girl
caught in a maelstrom of grief and loss, love and heartbreak. And then there’s
Dean…you’ll just have to read the book, ‘cause I can’t do him justice in a few
short sentences.” –Jasinda Wilder, New York Times and USA Today best-selling
author of Falling into You

Sometimes a shattered heart needs to sing to love again . . . Sixteen year old
singer-songwriter Shaynee Sullivan hasn’t so much as touched her guitar since
her mom died six months ago. In fact, Shaynee hasn’t felt like doing much of
anything lately, except maybe playing Whack-a-Mole on her “emotionally
intelligent” brother’s head. But when she meets a gorgeous and surprising
rocker named Dean, her shattered heart begins to mend . . . and then burst at the
seams. Heart-wrenching, heart-warming, and sometimes even heart-racing, Heart
Shaped Rock will leave you laughing through tears and rooting for love in all
its forms.

Hear the original music performed in Heart Shaped Rock at All
music available on iTunes.


I sort of flop my arm around in the air like it’s a marlin on the end of a deep-sea fishing line, attempting to simulate a goodbye wave to Jared as his hatch-back pulls away from the curb. Jared waves back at me in reply to my flopping gesture, so perhaps I’ve managed to imitate appropriate human communication well enough. But I don’t feel human. My arm doesn’t feel like my arm. My body doesn’t feel like my body. I’m totally numb. So numb, in fact, I could probably fling my body into oncoming traffic and not feel a damned thing.

My phone buzzes in my pocket. And buzzes. And buzzes. Someone is calling me, but I don’t pull my phone out. I don’t want to talk to Tiffany.

The memory of Tiffany’s face when I accused her of wanting to keep me down flashes in my mind, and regret explodes inside my chest, splintering and shattering like a glass hurled against a wall. I’m ashamed of myself. I’m just a bad person. I’m evil, I suddenly realize. I’m just a horrible, soul-sucking, inhuman person—or, actually, come to think of it, maybe I’m not a person at all. Maybe I died along with Mom, just as I’ve always suspected, and stupid doctors and scientists butted in and put me back together again. Maybe, my insides are now cobbled together with chicken wire and wood planks and Styrofoam and stone and fiberglass and silly putty and paper maché. Maybe, now that I’ve got an egg carton for a brain, I’m just too brainless to understand what has happened to me. That would explain a lot, like how I’m walking around without a beating heart inside my chest. Or, apparently, without a soul. Or a single redeeming quality. Or, now, thanks my stupid, cruel words to Tiffany, a single friend. Wow, it’s true. I don’t have a single friend now. I don’t have anyone on this earth who loves me, except for Dad and Lennox, but they don’t count.

Everyone is gone.

I’m all alone.

Available from:
Amazon * B&N * Kobo * iTunes

About the Author

Laura Roppé is an
award-winning singer/songwriter, author, audio book narrator, speaker, and
former attorney from San Diego, California. In 2011, Billboard Magazine ranked
her as Number Three on its chart of the Top 50 “uncharted” artists in
the world. In May 2013, Laura began hosting Amazon’s weekly podcast,
“Kindle Love Stories,” for people who love hearing about love
stories, romance, and happily ever afters.

Her first book is the non-fiction memoir, Rocking the Pink. Her latest is a
YA-teen romance novel entitled Heart Shaped Rock, featuring a soundtrack.

Author Links:
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Romance and Suspense ~ A Guest Post by Kim Cresswell

The Perfect Blend of Romance and Suspense

By Kim Cresswell

I love writing and reading romantic suspense because not only does the suspense provide instant tension in a story, I love the push-pull-tug-of-war of romance.

Will the hero and heroine get together?

Will they overcome the conflict and live happily ever after?

In my debut romantic suspense, REFLECTION ( A Whitney Steel Novel), my heroine, reporter Whitney Steel is investigating an alleged human cloning project when she meets up with the hero, undercover FBI Agent, Blake Neely, who is searching for his own answers.

Everything from this point on focuses on Blake and Whitney discovering whether or not the villain has produced the world’s first cloned human.

They don’t set out to fall in love.

The relationship between the hero and heroine evolves because of the suspense.

So what is the perfect blend of romance and suspense? In my opinion–a kick-ass heroine and a hot FBI agent, sizzling romance, murder, and lots and lots of mayhem!

About The Book

Florida investigative reporter, Whitney Steel, has lived in the shadow of her legendary father long enough. To prove herself she needs to find the “Big” story.

She found it.

Now it may kill her.

After Whitney receives a lead pointing to the world’s first cloned human, now a small child, she vows to unravel the truth.

However, sifting through the facts proves to have dangerous results, including death threats and murder.

When Whitney is nearly killed, but is saved by undercover FBI Special Agent, Blake Neely, he refuses to let her get in the way of his own objective—at least not right away.

Caught in a lethal game between a billionaire obsessed with genetic perfection, his hit man’s thirst for retribution, and a Colombian drug lord fresh out of prison determined to make Blake pay for his twin brother’s death over a decade ago…

Can they save an innocent child before it’s too late?

Faced with tough choices, with deadly consequences for many—Whitney soon realizes that sometimes a story becomes more than just a story.

About The Author

Kim Cresswell resides in Ontario, Canada. Trained as a legal assistant, Kim has been a story-teller all her life but took many detours including; working in legal and adult education before returning to her first love, writing.

Her debut romantic suspense, REFLECTION, has won numerous awards:

  • InD’tale Magazine 2014 Rone Award Finalist (Suspense/Thriller)
  • UP Authors Fiction Challenge Winner (2013)
  • Silicon Valley’s Romance Writers of America (RWA) “Gotcha!” Romantic Suspense Winner (2004)
  • Honourable Mention in Calgary’s (RWA) The Writer’s Voice Contest (2006).
  • LETHAL JOURNEY was a finalist in From the Heart Romance Writers (FTHRW) Golden Gate Contest (2003)

Her action-packed thrillers have been highly praised by reviewers and readers. As one reviewer said, “Buckle up, Hang on tight!”

Kim recently entered the true crime writing arena. Real Life Evil – A True Crime Quickie (two short stories) was published in January 2014. You can read her latest true crime stories in Serial Killer Quarterly, a new quarterly e-magazine published by Grinning Man Press.

Website/Blog  | Facebook  |  Twitter  | Amazon Author Page

Spotlight On: The Earl’s Curse, by Donna Hatch Moore


Title: The Earl’s Curse
Author: Donna Hatch-Moore
Genre: Romance

Earl's Curse kdp Cover

For six hundred years a curse has hung over Tyghhedu Castle in Wales – every earl has died soon after their heir is born. Edward Rutledge, the current earl, is determined to break the curse. He is the last of his line. If he dies unmarried and without an heir the curse will be broken.
The he meets his destiny in the form of a small beautiful woman named Kaireen – the same name as the woman who caused the curse to be made six hundred years before. Is this Kaireen the one person who will finally break the curse?

Author Bio

My Author Photo

After we lost our home to a fire we were forced to live in our car. while my husband worked I stayed in the car with our pets. I read a lot of books and then started to write my own book. I wrote it long hand then would type the pages on an old manual typewriter I found. I wrote every day while my husband looked for work. The result was my first book, Twice In A Lifetime.

Today we are still homeless but now live in an old motorhome. My husband has found full-time work and I still write every day although now I write on a laptop my husband surprised me with for Valentine’s Day.

Links @donnahatchmoore


Book Excerpt

As they entered the room Kaireen saw the profile of a large man sitting in a wing chair with his legs stretched toward the fire.

“My Lordship, Miss Ramsley has finally arrived safe and sound.” Enid said.

He got out of the chair and turned to approach Kaireen. She had to suppress a sudden urge to smooth her wet hair and travel worn skirt.

He was younger than she expected. She knew he had recently returned to the castle after long years of abandonment so she had expected a much older man; the earl was only a few years older than she was.

Firelight played on his golden hair bringing out the deep red within. His eyes were deep blue pools in his chiseled face. Beautiful was the only word that came to mind. She thought he looked like Apollo, the sun god.


Spotlight On: The Children and the Blood, trilogy by Megan Joel Peterson

Title: The Children and the Blood
Author: Megan Joel Peterson
Series: The Children and the Blood #1
Genre: Young Adult, urban fantasy

A forgotten life.

A secret war.
Eight years ago, an exploding gas main killed Ashley’s family and left her with a childhood she can’t remember. Eight years later, the forgotten past is behind her and life on her isolated farm is all she knows.

Until that past comes looking for her.

Until men with superhuman powers hunt her down in the night, determined to take everything she loves away from her again.

Refreshing and suspenseful, The Children and the
Blood is a YA Urban Fantasy that took me by surprise and impressed me so many
times I lost count.
 – Raina
‘The LUV’NV’

The world building was incredible. I swear it was like reading a movie script
at times, how those vivid scenes would put on the big screen.
” –
‘Words Create Scenes’

Only 99¢
 iTunes  |  Kobo  |  Smashwords
White light surrounded her and rushing air roared in her
ears. Distantly, she heard Lily screaming. And then something soft crushed into
Gasping, Ashley sat up. She was in the vegetable garden,
Lily clutching her hand. Frantically, she scrambled to her feet, searching for
her father.
Masked men surrounded him.
With a cry, she tried to run to him. Lily hauled on her arm,
holding her back with terror in her eyes.
Through the circle, another man approached. Amid the ski
masks and rifles, his business suit and uncovered face stood in sharp contrast.
Firelight played off his dark hair, turning his eyes into shadowed pits and
chiseling his face in strange relief. Several inches taller than anyone around
him, he towered like a giant over her father on the ground.
In spite of everything, Patrick tried to stand. Fury surged
past the pain on his face, and his hand rose as if to strike the man.
The giant scoffed, and his fingers twitched as though
flicking away a fly. Patrick gasped. His back arched sharply. And then he
crashed to the ground and didn’t move again.
Ashley couldn’t breathe.
This wasn’t happening.
A smile curled the giant’s mouth as he looked toward the girls
in the vegetable garden.
“Get them,” he ordered.
Like unleashed hunting dogs, the men charged.
The sight shattered her paralysis. Ripping her gaze from her
father, Ashley spun. Yanking Lily behind her, she tore across the tilled soil,
choking back a sob as the soft earth sucked at her feet, slowing her down.
She reached the edge of the garden and took off across the
field with no idea of where to go. Lily clung to her, and she could hear the
girl crying. Thelma’s house was an eternity away, and she couldn’t see the
woman’s porch light. The farmhands’ house was dark. No one had emerged this
whole time.
Tears burned her eyes.
She kept running.
Headlights surged over the rise at the edge of the property.
With a shriek, Ashley tried to turn, her feet sliding from beneath her on the
grass. Lily slammed into her and frantically, Ashley grabbed the girl and
shoved her to the side.
Lily rolled away.
Ashley didn’t have time to move.
The car roared straight at her.
Title: Taliesin Ascendant

The war isn’t over. And new enemies await.

 Life on the
run hasn’t been easy, but so far, Ashe has survived. But now Carter has ordered
her away from the Hunters to find her family’s people – an order she can’t
refuse, no matter how much she wants to stay.

 Following his command will bring her into an unknown world, however – a
world filled with new enemies and old prejudices that will demand more of her
than she can imagine, at a cost higher than she’ll ever be willing to pay.

Taliesin Ascendant is equally as pulse-pounding as The
Children and the Blood. I felt there was fantastic character development
combined with the spine-tingling suspense and action. Oh, all the intrigue!
” – Brandee
‘Bookworm Brandee’
Things unfold but you still know there’s more to the story
that you don’t know. It’s very unique writing and an absolute high speed,
action packed adventure that you’re traveling on with the main characters
.” – Carey
‘Toot’s Book Reviews’


Title: Merlin’s Children

The stakes of the war have never
been higher.
 But what will be the cost to win? 

Ashe knows loss, knows sacrifice and pain. Her allies are scattered and
too many lie dead. The Blood are stronger than ever and more connected than she
could have imagined.

But the worst is yet to come. The war has taken so many people she loves.
Now it just might take everyone who’s left.

This final book in the trilogy was every bit as
thrilling as the first two. I was so tense – flying through the pages to learn
who would survive, who would betray whom, which characters would finally put
their trust in the right people. It was nail-biting suspense.
” –
‘Bookworm Brandee’


About Megan

Megan Joel Peterson lives somewhere between the cornfields of Illinois and fantasy worlds filled with magic. She has a degree in English Literature from the University of Illinois, and has worked a little bit of everywhere over the years. Now she spends her days and nights creating new stories, and thinks writing is the best job for which she ever could have asked.

Website  |  Goodreads  |  Twitter  |   Facebook  |  Google Plus  |  Tumblr  |  Pinterest 


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Spotlight On: Messenger by Laury Falter

Title: Messenger (Guardian Trilogy Prequel #1)
Author: Laury Falter
Series: Guardian Trilogy
Genre: YA/Paranormal/Fantasy/Angels
Publisher: Audeamus, LLC
Release Date: May 8 2014
Edition/Formats Available In: eBook

Maggie does not know she is a Messenger. She has never met her eternal lover. She has never survived a Fallen One. All this changes when a Messenger awakens in the Hall of Records only to die moments later, never to return.
As Maggie sets out to determine why the Messengers are suddenly beginning to die, she crosses paths with the infuriatingly appealing Eran and their story begins.
In this riveting account of Maggie’s first life on earth with Eran, the star-crossed lover’s romance transpires amidst treacherous enemies, their friends’ resistance, and their own opposing wills. With the odds against her, can Maggie survive long enough to admit the feelings she has so carefully denied?
Messenger is the first prequel to the bestselling Guardian Trilogy – the breathtaking romantic saga about a love that has lasted centuries between a Messenger and her Guardian.


He strode to me and crouched at my hip. His shirt was
already off and the nearness of his well-built chest made it a challenge to
stop myself from glancing at it. To my astonishment, he seemed not to notice my
internal plight, not even the tremble that shook me when he tenderly took my
chin and turned it toward him.
“You’re healing nicely,” he observed,
concentrating on my forehead.
“Mm-hmm.” It was all I could muster.
This was the closest we had ever been. His lips were no more
than a few inches from me and drew my attention.
“I don’t think you’ll even scar.”
When I didn’t answer, I felt a shift in his presence and my
eyes darted up to find him staring back with his striking blue-green eyes.
We froze in place.
Only our chests rose and fell, and they did it more rapidly
the longer we stared at each other.
As his eyes lowered to my lips, his fingers tightened gently
around my chin.
The flare of his nostrils and the intensity of his stare
mesmerized me, made me want him closer. And it told me that he was struggling
too and was in profound debate over what we were doing. No ward should be this
close to their guardian, even if the ward didn’t recognize them as one. It was
taboo, unheard of, an abject insult to the role the guardian had been given.
Yet, here he was, looking at me, at my lips, tensing at the sight of them.
And he wasn’t alone in the struggle. For the first time, I
forgot my urge to throw him off balance, my need to establish my independence.
I was the one quickly losing my poise and forgetting who was dominant. The
charm I fought so hard to deny, the very one that drew all others to him, took
hold of me. And I gave into it out of my own free will.

Laury Falter is a bestselling author of young adult romantic suspense and urban fantasy. She is also an animal rights activist, a sailor, a one-handed golf putterer, and a Colorado River conqueror.

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Very Inspiring Blogger Award!


A huge THANK YOU! to the fabulous Sahara Roberts for nominating me for this award! It’s a super-cool award that is awarded by bloggers to bloggers, and the rules are simple:

1.Link back to the person nominating you for the award
2.Display the Very Inspiring Blogger logo
3.Reveal 7 things about yourself
4.Nominate 7 others to receive the award

So let’s get started with seven things about me:

1. I have a Ph.D. in eighteenth-century British literature–but, despite having recently started writing romance novels, I have yet to write a historical romance. Maybe someday I’ll use my knowledge of the period to write a Regency or a Restoration-era novel, but so far all my writing about the period has been entirely academic.

Gothic lit image_tales_of_wonder

2. I am obsessed with science fiction and fantasy television. I teach writing courses in my other job, and when I grade, I often have Buffy or Supernatural or Star Trek or Farscape or The Walking Dead (and the list goes on) playing in the background. When it’s time to start writing, I have to turn the shows off, though.

buffy and giles library image

3. I keep a running list of words I swear I will never use again in my writing–and every time I proofread something, I add words to it. I anticipate that someday I will be reduced to a, an, and the.


4. I hate to cook–but I envy people who enjoy cooking!


5. I wrote my first novel as part of National Novel Writing Month–it was the first book I finished, and although it’s changed quite a bit since that first draft, it’s still one of my favorites. And it’s coming out next week!


6. I’m a seventh-generation Texan. And although I’ve lived all over the country (New Orleans, New York, Los Angeles, Birmingham, Atlanta), I keep coming back to my home state.


7. As much as I love coming home, though, I also love to travel. Some of my favorite places to visit are London, Venice, Athens, Bangkok–and anywhere with a beach!


And now I’m nominating the following people for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award–just a few of the wonderful authors and bloggers I’ve met in this publishing journey. Surprise, y’all! I hope you choose to pass the award along!

Wendy, of Fabulosity Reads

Melanie Karsak

Katie Hayoz

L. Jagi Lamplighter

Kriss, the Cabin Goddess

Melanie M. of Fang-Freakin-Tastic Reviews

Ella Marie at Reading is a Way of Life


Book Hooks Meme: First glimpse of SANGUINARY by Margo Bond Collins


Welcome to my stop in this week’s Book Hooks! Take a look at an excerpt from Sanguinary, one of my works in progress (a paranormal romance), then HOP to check out the rest of the participants’ excerpts, too!



I whipped my head around in time to see a man standing up from a barstool behind me. I hadn’t even noticed he was there, but I don’t know how I could have missed him. He wore jeans and a dark blue button-down shirt. He had on dark brown cowboy boots, I saw, and as he turned away from the bar, he picked up a black felt cowboy hat from the seat next to him and put it on his head. On anyone else, I might have assumed that the hat and boots were an affectation. On him, they just looked right. He was utterly beautiful—dark hair curling down to barely brush the back of his collar and bright green eyes.

I was undercover. There to do a job, I reminded myself. When Garrett caught my gaze in his, flicking his glance toward the cowboy, it was all I could do to keep from sighing aloud.

Of course he was the one I had to find a way to get close to tonight.

No making eyes at the informants, Cami.


About the Author

Margo Bond Collins is the author of a number of novels, including Waking Up Dead, Fairy, Texas, and Legally Undead (forthcoming May 27, 2014). She lives in Texas with her husband, their daughter, and several spoiled pets. She teaches college-level English courses online, though writing fiction is her first love. She enjoys reading urban fantasy and paranormal fiction of any genre and spends most of her free time daydreaming about vampires, ghosts, zombies, werewolves, and other monsters.


Connect with Margo
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Twitter: @MargoBondCollin
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“Experiencing the Flow while Writing,” by Mayra Calvani

“Experiencing the Flow while Writing,” by Mayra Calvani

The flow is what some refer to as being “in the zone,” that marvelous state of being when time seems to stop and everything disappears around us while we immerse ourselves in our work—in my case, in the fictional world of my characters.

Does it happen all the time? No. But when it does, it is absolutely wonderful. Writing becomes a transcendent, almost spiritual activity.

According to Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, author of Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience and other books on this subject, people are happiest when they’re in the flow, which he defines as a state of concentration or complete absorption in an activity. Or, “the result of intense concentration on the present.”

I have found that the more often and faster I write, the more I put my ego aside, and the more relaxed I am, the easier it becomes to reach the zone. My major problem is that I usually edit as I write, meaning that my left brain keeps intruding. Worrying about words, verbs, adjectives, etc. inhibits flow. There’s nothing wrong with editing, of course. The problem is editing and creating at the same time.

For me, editing while creating can result in anxiety. Anxiety, in turn, can be a huge form of distraction. Editing while creating implies that I’m focusing on the end product instead of the process, on impressing the reader with perfect words and turns of phrases instead of letting go and trusting “the soup.” In short, it means focusing on the future instead of the present. This, in turn, means that the ego is in the way, and in a state of perfect flow, there’s no ego and no anxiety present.

I always try to do things to facilitate and increase concentration. I write in the mornings, when my mind is rested and at its full potential, and when I’m alone and the house is quiet. I turn off the internet. I don’t answer phones unless it’s an emergency. I listen to an atmospheric movie score with headphones to help block the outside world. When I’m feeling unusually distracted at home, I go to a café. I find that the noise from people’s conversations around me paradoxically help me focus like music does. To diminish productivity anxiety, I don’t set myself a minimum number of pages at a time. Instead, I tell myself, “Okay, for the next two hours I’m going to be with my novel.” This, believe it or not, has been a major factor in reducing my anxiety. I also say a little mantra to myself: “Trust the soup, enjoy the journey.”

What about you? What do you do to experience the flow?

About The Author

Award-winning author Mayra Calvani has penned over ten books for children and adults in genres ranging from picture books to nonfiction to paranormal fantasy novels. She’s had over 300 articles, short stories, interviews and reviews published in magazines such as The Writer, Writer’s Journal and Bloomsbury Review, among others. A native of San Juan, Puerto Rico, she now resides in Brussels, Belgium.

About The Book

The Luthier’s Apprentice is book 1 in this new fantasy series, featuring violin student/luthier/amateur sleuth 16-year-old Emma Braun.

Niccolò Paganini (1782-1840), one of the greatest violinists who ever lived and rumored to have made a pact with the devil, has somehow transferred unique powers to another…

When violinists around the world mysteriously vanish, 16-year-old Emma Braun takes notice. But when her beloved violin teacher disappears… Emma takes charge. With Sherlock Holmes fanatic, not to mention gorgeous Corey Fletcher, Emma discovers a parallel world ruled by an ex-violinist turned evil sorceress who wants to rule the music world on her own terms.

But why are only men violinists captured and not women? What is the connection between Emma’s family, the sorceress, and the infamous Niccolò Paganini?

Emma must unravel the mystery in order to save her teacher from the fatal destiny that awaits him. And undo the curse that torments her family—before evil wins and she becomes the next luthier’s apprentice…


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Boxed Set Sale: SWOON

Get ready to SWOON with 3 sexy, NEVER BEFORE RELEASED New Adult romance novels!
Box set will be sold for 9 Days Only! 99 Cents!
Available in a limited edition box set at the special price of only .99 cents for all 3 new books! Starting May 19th, this set will only be on sale for 9 days BEFORE the May 28th official release dates of the individual books. On May 28th, each book will be released separately at a price of $2.99 per book.
The soon-to-be released books in the set are:
Whispering Wishes, by Jennifer Miller
Tempting Sydney, by Angela Corbett
Rain Check, by Gypsy Rae Choszer
This set includes books by 2014 RONE Award Finalists, Jennifer Miller and Angela Corbett (Destiny Ford), and debut author, Gypsy Rae Choszer!
*Due to mature content, this box set is recommended for readers over 18.



Want to win a gift basket?
Help spread the word!

Using the hashtag, #SWOON, share a facebook status, tweet, instagram, blog post, etc. about the box set. Be sure to use the hashtag. Each time it is used counts as an entry! 🙂 


To learn more about the authors and their books, click on any of the links below.