August 16, 2017

Excerpt Reveal + Giveaway: Black Bird of the Gallows by Meg Kassel



Black Bird of the Gallows
Author: Meg Kassel
Genre: YA Fantasy/Paranormal
Release Date: September 5, 2017
Publisher: Entangled Teen

Description:

A simple but forgotten truth: Where harbingers of death appear, the morgues will soon be full.

Angie Dovage can tell there’s more to Reece Fernandez than just the tall, brooding athlete who has her classmates swooning, but she can’t imagine his presence signals a tragedy that will devastate her small town. When something supernatural tries to attack her, Angie is thrown into a battle between good and evil she never saw coming. Right in the center of it is Reece—and he’s not human.

What's more, she knows something most don't. That the secrets her town holds could kill them all. But that’s only half as dangerous as falling in love with a harbinger of death.
  


I’m seriously questioning the wisdom of coming here. Who is this boy? Who are these people? I may not want these answers. Whatever illusion I had been weaving about this being a normal family can’t be true. This is a family, yes, but one putting on an elaborate show to appear to be something they are not. “Everyday life can’t be so bad,” I say lightly, eager to change the subject before I start luring myself down a hole. “You have a beautiful home, a nice family. You’re popular at school. Kiera Shaw certainly likes you.”

He turns his gaze to me, slowly. “Kiera Shaw? You think I like her?”

“I don’t know what you like.” I don’t blink. I don’t look away. “I know only what I’ve seen.”

Reece leans close, gently entering my personal space. Close enough to put me on edge, but not close enough to intimidate. His voice is silk on gravel. His narrowed eyes glitter down at me. “And what, exactly, have you seen, Angie?”

Shivers race up my skin. I want to defuse this so badly, but I feel like this is a challenge I can’t lose. “I’ve seen and heard things that don’t make sense. Things I can’t understand.” I shift my gaze to my crow sitting on a branch above my head. It watches me with an intensity that would scare me if I wasn’t accustomed to it. “Tell me about the crows.”

He shakes his head. “Sorry. Either you know about them, or you don’t.”

My jaw tightens, even as I step toward him. I can feel his body heat. His clean, guy scent fills my senses with a unique magnetism that draws me close. Closer still. “I will find out.”

His gaze sweeps my face, lingering on my lips. “I hope not.” His breath warms my temple, sending a shiver under my skin. “There are worse things out there than a few watchful birds.”

“Like what?” I’m breathless, damn him. My words are barely audible.

His lashes fan low over his eyes. The narrow space between us crackles with tension. “Oh Angie, you don’t want to know.”

Meg Kassel is an author of fantasy and speculative books for young adults. A graduate of Parson's School of Design, she’s always been creating stories, whether with visuals or words. She worked as a graphic designer before realizing the thing she did for pleasure (writing) was something she should do for real. Meg is a New Jersey native who lives in a log house in the Maine woods with her husband and daughter. A fan of ’80s cartoons, Netflix series, and ancient mythology, Meg has always been fascinated and inspired by the fantastic, the creepy, and the futuristic. When she’s not writing, Meg is reading, hanging out with her family, hoarding peanut butter cups, or playing video games. She is a two-time finalist and the 2016 winner of the RWA Golden Heart© contest in YA.

Website: www.megkassel.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/megkasselauthor
Twitter: @megkassel
Instagram: @seemegwrite
Tumblr: www.tumblr.com/blog/megkassel







 

Diary of a Teenage Jewel Thief Blog Tour: Excerpt + Giveaway

 


Diary of a Teenage Jewel Thief
Author: Rosie Somers 

Description:

Most sixteen-year-olds shouldn’t know where museums keep their rarest jewels (the basement) and they really shouldn’t know that vans make the worst getaway cars. But for Marisol Flores, a life of jewel thievery is a birthright handed down from generation to generation, even if she didn’t ask for it. So when a rival thief targets Mari and her mother, Mari’s more than happy to flee to the anonymity of bustling New York City. 

Blending in is a dream come true for Mari, but keeping her former thieving ways a secret gets way more complicated when handsome Will Campbell sets his sights on her. She can’t help but like his terrible puns and charming grin…but when her past catches up with her, it’s not only her life—and her anonymity—that’s at stake. 

Will could be the next target.  
When his tongue darts out to wet his lips, I unconsciously mirror the action, and he sucks in a deep breath in response. A little thrill shoots through me at the realization that he’s reacting to me that way because he wants to kiss me. And if I’m honest with myself, I want to kiss him. I can almost feel his lips pressing against mine. Every fiber of my being is caught in his gravitational pull, aching to be near him.

Rosie Somers is a beach-going book addict who’s been crafting stories since before she learned her ABCs. When she’s not busy trying to bring the characters in her head to life on paper, she can be found volunteering with local animal rescues, crocheting funky hats for her friends, or eating herself into the poorhouse at Chipotle. Her fondest dream is to one day own a goat. 

Author Blog: rosiesomers.blogspot.com 
Author Twitter: @prosyrosie
Author Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ProsyRosie/ 
Author Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8281027.Rosie_Somers   




Tour Schedule:
August 7th 
2 Cooks Crafting Books – Review 
Dana’s YA Bookpile – Spotlight Post 

August 8th 
Sleeps on Tables – Spotlight Post 
Margie’s Must Reads – Spotlight Post  

August 9th 
Crossroad Reviews – Spotlight Post 
Roxy’s Reviews – Spotlight Post 
Here’s to Happy Endings – Author Interview  

August 10th 
The Phantom Paragrapher – Review 
Literary Meanderings – Spotlight Post  

August 11th 
Diana’s Book Reviews – Review 
RoloPoloBookBlog – Spotlight Post  

August 12th 
Tara’s Book Addiction – Spotlight Post 
PBC – Spotlight Post  

August 13th 
Eru Books and Recs – Review 
Wonder Struck – Review  

August 14th 
Ginger Mom and the Kindle Quest – Review 
Readingwithwrin – Review  

August 15th 
Twirling Book Princess – Spotlight Post 
Smada’s Book Smack – Review 
Bibliobibuli YA – Guest Post  

August 16th 
The Book Beacon – Review 
A Dream Within A Dream – Guest Post  

August 17th 
YaReads – Author Interview 
Folded Corners and Smudged Screens – Review  

August 18th  
Becky on Books – Review 
Just One More Chapter – Spotlight Post 
Cindy’s Love of Books – Review





Cover Reveal: Christmas at the Lake by Charlotte Blake


 

 Christmas at the Lake (Great Escapes #2)
Author: Charlotte Blake

Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Publication Date: September 12, 2017
Description:

Sometimes love gets forgotten …

Hugely successful Lexi Stuart is used to guys pursuing her, but for all the wrong reasons. Sure, she’s beautiful and rich, but the men in her life never seem to want anything more serious than just sex. It’s a stark reality she’s become used to.

As a code writer in Silicon Vally, Adam Hunt doesn’t have to worry about money. And as a heartthrob in general, he doesn’t need to worry about attracting women, either. But when he meets Lexi during a Christmas holiday in Lake Tahoe, he’s floored that she won’t give him the time of day after one wild night together.

Now, this sports bum is about to take Lexi on the ride of her life. All she needs to do is hang on!

18+
NOTE: This STAND-ALONE romance contains very steamy love scenes. All of the books in the Great Escapes series can be read in any order.





XBTBanner1







August 15, 2017

Holiday in the Hamptons Blog Tour: Excerpt + Giveaway



HOLIDAY IN THE HAMPTONS
Author: Sarah Morgan 
Publication Date: August 29, 2017 
Publisher: Harlequin Books 
Formats: Paperback, eBook, audiobook
Pages: 384

Description:

The perfect summer escape?

Professional dog-walker Felicity Knight loves everything about New York...until her ex-husband starts working at her local vet clinic. She hasn't seen Seth Carlyle in ten years, but one glimpse of him--too gorgeous, and still too good for her--and Fliss's heart hurts like their whirlwind marriage ended yesterday. So when her grandmother in the Hamptons needs help for the summer, it seems the ideal way to escape her past. 

Their relationship might have lasted only a few scorching months, but vet Seth knows Fliss--if she's run away to the Hamptons, it's because she still feels their connection and it terrifies her. He let her go once before, when he didn't know any better, but not this summer! With the help of his adorable dog, Lulu, and a sprinkling of beachside magic, Seth is determined to make Fliss see that he's never stopped loving her... 

Sarah Morgan delights with more love and laughter in her acclaimed series From Manhattan with Love, which Publishers Weekly calls "engaging...a classic sweep-you-off-your-feet romantic experience." 

Find it: Amazon, Audible, Barnes&Noble, iBooks, TBD, Goodreads
 
“I never think about it.” The lie came easily even though a day rarely passed when she didn’t think about it. She also thought about what Seth’s life might have looked like if he hadn’t met her and occasionally, when she was indulging herself, what her life with Seth Carlyle could have looked like if the circumstances had been different.

Harriet studied her with a mixture of concern and exasperation. “Are you sure? Because it was a big deal.”

“As you say, it’s been ten years.”

“And you haven’t been seriously involved with a man since.”

“Haven’t met anyone who interested me.” Anyone who measured up. Anyone who made her feel the way Seth had made her feel. There were days when she wondered if what she’d felt had been real, or if her teenage brain had augmented those feelings.

“It upsets me when you don’t share your feelings with me. I can understand why you hid everything from Dad, and even from Daniel, but this is me.”

“I’m not hiding anything.”

“Fliss—”

“All right, maybe I hide some things, but there’s nothing I can do about that. It’s the way I am.”

“No. It’s the way you learned to be. And we both know why.” Weary, Harriet stooped to remove Fliss’s shoe from the puppy’s mouth.

Fliss stared at her sister, the urge to confide momentarily eclipsing her quest for privacy. “I—I think about it sometimes. About him.” Why had she said that? If she opened the door a crack, her emotions were likely to come pouring out and drown everyone around her.
Harriet straightened slowly. “Which part do you think about most?”

That fateful birthday. The kiss on the beach. His mouth and hands. The laughter, the sunshine, the smell of the ocean. Passion and promise.

She could still remember it vividly. Almost as vividly as she remembered everything that had followed.

“Forget it. I don’t really think about it.”

“Fliss!”

“All right! I think about it. All of it. But I was dealing with it pretty well, until Daniel told me he’d seen Seth here in New York.” You were supposed to be able to leave your past behind. What were you supposed to do when it followed you? “Do you think he knew I was living here?”

New York was a city of eight million people. Eight million busy people, all running around doing their thing. It was a city of possibilities, but one of those possibilities was to live here anonymously, blending in. It had been perfect, until the day Seth Carlyle had taken a job in the vet practice they used regularly.

“In New York? I don’t know. I doubt he knew he’d be this close to you. It’s not as if you’ve been in touch.”

“No. Never been in touch.” It was the only way she’d been able to cope. Put it behind her. Move on. Don’t look back.

He hadn’t been in touch with her either, so presumably he’d been taking the same approach.

Harriet lifted the puppy back into his basket. “I know it feels difficult, but you’ve built a whole new life, and he has, too.”

“I know, but I wish he hadn’t chosen to move his life onto my patch. I should be able to walk the few blocks around our apartment without having to peer around street corners like a fugitive.”

“You’re doing that?” The shock in her twin’s eyes made her wish she’d kept that information to herself.

“I was talking hypothetically.”

“If you’d done what you planned to do and just walked in there and said, ‘Hi, good to see you again,’ you would have cleared the air and you wouldn’t be glancing over your shoulder. Things will feel easier when you’ve actually seen him.”

“I have seen him,” Fliss muttered. “He was standing in Reception when I made my first attempt to approach the building last week.” It was his hair that had caught her eye first, and then the way he’d angled his head to listen to something the receptionist was saying to him.

He’d always been a good listener. It had been ten years since she’d touched him or stood close to him, but everything about him was achingly familiar.

Harriet was gaping at her. “You saw him? Why didn’t you tell me?”

“Nothing to tell. And don’t worry, he didn’t see me.”

“How do you know?”

“Because I dropped to the ground like a navy SEAL on a secret mission. I didn’t move until I was sure he’d gone. I had to stop a passerby calling 911, which was both annoying and reassuring because usually New Yorkers are too busy doing their own thing to pay much attention to a body on the ground. Why are you gaping at me?”

“You dropped to the ground. And you’re trying to pretend you’re fine with this?”

“No pretense necessary.” She ground her teeth. Didn’t her sister have a dog to walk or something? “You’re right. I have to do this. I have to meet him and get it over with.” The thought of it made her heart and pulse thunder a protest. It was a fight-or-flight response, and her body seemed to be choosing flight.

USA Today bestselling author Sarah Morgan writes hot, happy contemporary romance and her trademark humour and sensuality have gained her fans across the globe. Described as ‘a magician with words’ by RT Book Reviews, she has sold over 15 million copies of her books. She has been nominated five times for the prestigious RITA© Award from the Romance Writers of America and won the award three times; in 2012 for her book ‘Doukakis’s Apprentice’, 2013 for ‘A Night of No Return’, and 2017 for ‘Miracle on 5th Avenue’. She also won the RT Reviewers’ Choice Award in 2012 and has made numerous appearances in their ‘Top Pick’ slot. 

As a child Sarah dreamed of being a writer and although she took a few interesting detours along the way, she is now living that dream. 

Sarah lives near London with her husband and children, and when she isn’t reading or writing she loves being outdoors, preferably on vacation so she can forget the house needs tidying. 

(1) winner will receive a Kate Spade Beach Themed Prize Pack - US/Canada Only



Tour Schedule: 

Week One: 
8/7/2017- YA Book Nerd- Review 
8/8/2017- Romantic Reviews- Excerpt 
8/9/2017- Kati's Bookaholic Rambling Reviews- Review 
8/10/2017- Becky on Books- Review 
8/11/2017- Bookish in Texas- Review 

Week Two: 
8/14/2017- Books and Readers- Review 
8/15/2017- A Dream Within A Dream- Excerpt 
8/16/2017- Vox Libris- Review 
8/17/2017- Savings in Seconds- Review 
8/18/2017- ChickLit Club- Review 

Week Three: 
 
8/21/2017- Lattes & Paperbacks- Review 
8/22/2017- Fire and Ice- Review 
8/23/2017- Celluloid Diaries- Excerpt 
8/24/2017- Bibliobakes- Review 
8/25/2017- Eli to the nth- Review 



 

Thief's Mark Blog Tour: Excerpt

Thief's Mark (Sharpe & Donovan #8)
Author: Carla Neggers
Release Date: August 29, 2017
Publisher: MIRA

Description:

A murder in a quiet English village, long-buried secrets and a man’s search for answers about his traumatic past entangle FBI agents Emma Sharpe and Colin Donovan in the latest edge-of-your-seat Sharpe & Donovan novel.

As a young boy, Oliver York witnessed the murder of his wealthy parents in their London apartment. The killers kidnapped him and held him in an isolated Scottish ruin, but he escaped, thwarting their plans for ransom. Now, after thirty years on the run, one of the two men Oliver identified as his tormentors may have surfaced.

Emma Sharpe and Colin Donovan are enjoying the final day of their Irish honeymoon when a break-in at the home of Emma’s grandfather, private art detective Wendell Sharpe, points to Oliver. The Sharpes have a complicated relationship with the likable, reclusive Englishman, an expert in Celtic mythology and international art thief who taunted Wendell for years. Emma and Colin postpone meetings in London with their elite FBI team and head straight to Oliver. But when they arrive at York’s country home, a man is dead and Oliver has vanished.

As the danger mounts, new questions arise about Oliver’s account of his boyhood trauma. Do Emma and Colin dare trust him? With the trail leading beyond Oliver’s small village to Ireland, Scotland and their own turf in the United States, the stakes are high, and Emma and Colin must unravel the decades-old tangle of secrets and lies before a killer strikes again.

New York Times bestselling author Carla Neggers delivers the gripping, suspense-filled tale readers have been waiting for.

The pair were familiar enough with each other they’d never bothered with “Mr. York” and “Ms. Balfour.” Oliver didn’t answer. Instead, without a word or so much as a grunt, he gave a curt wave, spun around and shot back out to the narrow lane that ran along the southern edge of the farm. It was a gray morning but it wasn’t wet, although there was talk of rain later in the day.

Henrietta rolled back onto her heels and frowned, hands deep in the bag of soil. “He can be like that, can’t he?”

Martin knew there was no point denying the obvious. “He can.”

“The lads down the pub say he can be dashing and sweet, too.”

Not in Martin’s experience, but he let it go. “What kind of flowers do you have in mind?”

“Depends where we decide to put the pot. It’s a gem, isn’t it? I do like the idea of having it out here.”

“You love old rubbish, do you?”

She smiled, her eyes lighting up despite Oliver’s rudeness. “Especially if it has sentimental value. Does Oliver remember his great-grandmother?”

“It’s possible. She died when he was three.”

“I don’t remember her but you must.”

Martin nodded. “I do. She was a lovely lady. She expanded the gardens here, although it was her daughter-in-law, Oliver’s grandmother, who converted the dovecote into a potting shed.”

“I remember Priscilla, of course. She and Aunt Posey were friends.” Henrietta dumped two heaping handfuls of soil into the pot, atop what he’d dug from the hillside. “We’re not going to discover Oliver bought this pot at a white-elephant sale and forgot about it, are we?”

“I’m sure we won’t. I can vouch for it. I remember his great-grandmother planting flowers in this very pot.”

“It’s a forgotten family heirloom, then. What kind of flowers were they, do you recall?”

Martin managed a genuine smile. “Dahlias. Peach-colored dahlias.”

Henrietta smiled again, wispy curls escaping her hair clip. “Perfect. Consider it done.”

Martin left her to her work. He didn’t see Oliver, or anyone else for that matter, on the lane, part of one of the marked, public walking trails that crisscrossed the Cotswolds. He could hear Henrietta humming now that she was rid of both him and Oliver. Continuing simply to tend the gardens was no longer sufficient but the process of overhauling them would take time. Martin had seen her in recent years on her visits with her aunt, but he knew little about her life in London. She was friendly and amusing, but she didn’t invite that kind of intimacy. Although charming and delightful in many ways, she was all about her work. 

These days discovering old pots was Henrietta Balfour’s idea of excitement.

Martin walked up the lane toward the farmhouse. After a spell of warm, clear days, he appreciated the cloudy sky and looked forward to a shower. The gray weather brought out the smells of early summer and suited his mood. He hadn’t missed joining Oliver in London, but he had to admit to a certain uneasy restlessness. It wasn’t like Oliver to go this long without getting into some kind of trouble. Even MI5 hadn’t contacted him in weeks. Oliver hadn’t acknowledged he was working with British intelligence—and he never would—but Martin knew better. There were subjects between them that were understood but never discussed and that was one of them.

A scream penetrated his brooding. He jumped, nearly tripping. His first thought was an accident involving one of the farm workers. Then he realized it was Ruthie Burns, Oliver’s housekeeper. In another moment, he spotted her at the lane’s intersection with a path up to the main house. She was running madly toward the dovecote, her arms pumping at ninety degrees at her sides as she picked up speed.

“Help! He’s dying. Dear God. Help!”

Although not one of Martin’s favorite people, Ruthie wasn’t prone to hyperbole or overreacting. He felt a jolt of adrenaline. Did she mean Oliver? Was he the one who was dying?

Henrietta burst up the lane from the dovecote. “What’s happened?” she asked, intense but steady. She’d removed her garden gloves and didn’t seem impeded by her long skirt.

“I don’t know yet,” Martin said.

She pointed a slender, dirt-covered hand up the lane. “That’s Ruthie, isn’t it?”

Martin nodded. The stout housekeeper was in her sixties, a few years older than he was, and had worked for the Yorks almost as long as he had. He felt an unwelcome tightness in his throat but forced himself to maintain his poise and equilibrium. Hysteria wouldn’t do anyone a bit of good.

Henrietta started toward Ruthie. “No,” Martin said. “Stay here. I’ll handle whatever’s happened.”

“Not alone, Martin. I’m going, too.”

He took in her natural sense of command, her composure, her directness—and he knew. 

He’d been expecting them to emerge. Any suspicions he’d had about her had transformed to certainty.

Henrietta Balfour was MI5.

Martin shook off the thought. Who and what Henrietta was didn’t matter now. They needed to get to Ruthie and find out what had her in a panic. He pushed forward but didn’t break in to a run. Henrietta eased next to him, clearly holding herself back from charging ahead. She was younger and fitter, but it wasn’t just that. She hadn’t hesitated. She’d relied on training, experience—perhaps just her nature but Martin doubted it. It was something more.

In thirty seconds, they intercepted Ruthie. She was breathless and red-faced, barely able to speak. Martin touched her arm. Accidents and crises weren’t unheard of on the farm. She’d dealt with many of them herself over the years. “Ruthie,” he said gently. “What’s happened?”

“A man. I didn’t get a good look at him. There’s so much blood.” Her eyes welled with tears. 
“It’s awful, Martin. Just awful. I think he’s dead.”

“Where’s Oliver?” he asked, trying to stem her panic as well as to get information.

“He’s there. He was trying to help him. The man who was bleeding. I don’t know what happened.”

“Have you called for an ambulance?” Henrietta asked.

Ruthie looked stricken, as if she’d done something wrong. “No, no—I didn’t. Oliver, I thought he…no.”

“Call 999 at once, in case Mr. York hasn’t had a chance to ring them,” Martin said.

“I have my mobile…” Ruthie mumbled.

“Shut the door first and lock it,” Henrietta said. “Then make the call.”

Ruthie gulped in air. “You don’t think…surely it’s an accident.”

“We want to be on the safe side,” Martin said softly.

“Of course.” Sweat mixed with drizzle and streamed down the older woman’s temples. “You two take care.”

“We will,” Henrietta said.

Ruthie sniffled and lurched forward, picking up her pace as she ran toward the dovecote.

Henrietta turned to Martin, who knew he had to look both annoyed and shocked. “I’m good in an emergency,” she said, then gestured toward the house. “Shall we?”

Given her uncompromising manner, Martin didn’t consider arguing with her to stay with Ruthie and let him go alone. He didn’t want to waste time on what he knew in advance would prove to be a futile effort. She started off, and he fell in behind her.
Carla Neggers is the New York Times bestselling author of more than 60 novels, including her popular Sharpe and Donovan and Swift River Valley series. Her books have been translated into 24 languages and sold in over 35 countries. A frequent traveler to Ireland, Carla lives with her family in New England. To learn more and to sign up for her newsletter, visit CarlaNeggers.com.

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EXCERPT TOUR for Thief’s Mark:

Monday, August 7th: Lovely Reads
Tuesday, August 8: Stuck in Books
Wednesday, August 9th: The Sassy Bookster
Thursday, August 10th: Books a la Mode
Friday, August 11th: Mama Reads
Monday, August 14th: Books and Spoons
Tuesday, August 15th: A Dream Within a Dream
Wednesday, August 16th: Book Nerd
Thursday, August 17th: Moonlight Rendezvous
Friday, August 18th: The Book Diva’s Reads
Monday, August 21st: A Holland Reads
Tuesday, August 22nd: From the TBR Pile
Wednesday, August 23rd: Romancing the Readers
Thursday, August 24th: The Lit Bitch
Friday, August 25th: Mama Vicky Says
.

REVIEW TOUR for Thief’s Mark:

Tuesday, August 29th: Clues and Reviews Wednesday, August 30th: Lesa’s Book Critiques
Thursday, August 31st: Reading Reality
Friday, September 1st: Rainy Day Reviews
Tuesday, September 5th: Jathan & Heather
Wednesday, September 6th: Deborah Blanchard
Thursday, September 7th: Staircase Wit
Friday, September 8th: Diary of a Stay at Home Mom
Monday, September 11th: Moonlight Rendezvous
Tuesday, September 12th: Run Wright
Wednesday, September 13th: A Holland Reads
Thursday, September 14th: Novel Gossip
Friday, September 15th: Read ‘Till Dawn
Monday, September 18th: Patricia’s Wisdom
Tuesday, September 19th: Buried Under Books
Wednesday, September 20th: Books and Bindings
Thursday, September 21st: Ms. Nose in a Book
Friday, September 22nd: A Chick Who Reads
Monday, September 25th: Bewitched Bookworms
Tuesday, September 26th: Mystery Suspense Reviews
Wednesday, September 27th: Book Nerd
Thursday, September 28th: What I’m Reading