#ReleaseBlitz “Lily (The Desert Sage Inn Series, Book 2” by Judith Keim

~~~

The Desert Sage Inn Series, Book 2

Contemporary Romantic Women’s Fiction

 

Date Published: October 14, 2021

Publisher: Wild Quail Publishing

Three talented women brought together by a man’s love…

When Lily Weaver is asked to help Alec Thurston, the one man she’s ever truly loved, and to come to Palm Desert, California, she doesn’t hesitate. He’s dying of cancer and needs her help in overseeing the sale of his hotel, The Desert Sage Inn, to another hotel group. For five wonderful years, she was his assistant at the hotel until he kindly told her their relationship was getting too serious, and he helped her find other work. With her organizational skills and attention to detail, she’s his perfect choice to oversee the details of the sale to help make a smooth transition while maintaining the reputation of the upscale property.

Unappreciated in her job with a law firm in New York State, she’s eager to leave it and the cold weather to head for the desert. Her only regret is leaving her sister and three-year-old niece behind. Lily arrives at Alec’s house to find two other women summoned to help him. Rose Macklin was once the social director at Alec’s hotel, and Willow Sanchez is like a daughter to him. They join forces to help him, lovingly accepting his nickname for them—the Desert Flowers, similar to the well-known Charlie’s Angels.

As Lily forms her friendship with the other women, she becomes intrigued with the man the hotel company has put in control of the transition. Brian Walden is a war veteran who has never married and is someone who Lily finds, to her delight, she can talk to about most anything when they meet up for early morning walks. Disaster strikes them both as they’re falling in love. Lily ends up having to raise her niece, and Brian is left with a son he never knew he had. It seems only natural that they turn to one another for help, and Lily wonders if this is as Alec might have planned all along.

A series for those who love stories about strong women facing challenges and finding love and happiness along the way.

~

Other Books in the The Desert Flowers Series:

The Desert Flowers – Rose

The Desert Sage Inn Series, Book 1

Publisher: Wild Quail Publishing

Release Date: January 28, 2021

Three talented women brought together by a man’s love…

When Rose Macklin is asked to help Alec Thurston, the one man she’s ever truly loved, by coming to Palm Desert, California, she doesn’t hesitate. He’s dying of cancer and needs her help in overseeing the sale of his hotel, The Desert Sage Inn, to another hotel group. With her marketing skill and as the owner of a very successful blog, she’s his perfect choice to make the sale a smooth transition while maintaining the reputation of the upscale property. She arrives to find two other women summoned to help Alec. Lily Weaver was once Alec’s assistant, and Willow Sanchez was like a daughter to him. They join forces to help him, lovingly accepting his nickname for them—the Desert Flowers, similar to the well-known Charlie’s Angels.

When Rose is assigned to work alongside Hank Bowers, an independent consultant to the hotel company’s team, she shudders at his reputation as an outgoing guy who always uses sports analogies and is certain they won’t get along. But Alec counsels her to give Hank a chance and, later, as they work together as a team, Rose is left to wonder if falling for one another is part of Alec’s secret plan even if one of Hank’s grown daughters fights the idea.

A series for those who love stories about strong women facing challenges and finding love and happiness along the way.

Amazon

B&N

Kobo

iBooks

Google Play

~

The Desert Flowers – Willow

The Desert Sage Inn Series, Book 3

Coming February 10, 2022

Three talented women are brought together by a man they all love, becoming his Desert Flowers, who work together to save his hotel from being ruined by the company buying it…

When Willow Sanchez is asked to help Alec Thurston, the man for whom her parents work and who’s always treated her as the daughter he once lost, she doesn’t hesitate to leave Boston and come back home to Palm Desert, California. Alec is dying of cancer and needs her help in overseeing the sale of his hotel, The Desert Sage Inn, to another hotel group. With her hotel accounting background and financial ability, she’s his perfect choice to help make the sale a smooth transition while maintaining the reputation of the upscale property. She arrives to find two other women summoned to help Alec. Lily Weaver was once Alec’s assistant, and Rose Macklin was heavily involved in the hotel in earlier years. They join forces to help him, lovingly accepting his nickname for them—the Desert Flowers, similar to the well-known Charlie’s Angels.

Willow is assigned to work with two young men, sons of the majority owners of the hotel company purchasing the Desert Sage Inn. One of the men, Brent Armstrong, attended the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University with her and used to bully her with unkind names. His cousin, Trace Armstrong, seems to be very different. Struggling to compete against them for the eventual job of executive assistant manager at the Desert Sage Inn, Willow wonders if she’ll ever find the right man to settle down with as she decides to stay in Palm Desert. A talented golfer, she is forced to take Alec’s place in a foursome with Craig Kincaid, the man both Rose and Lily think is perfect for her. But neither Willow nor Craig is interested in anything serious until Willow wonders if Craig might be the good guy Alec had always thought he was.

A series for those who love stories about strong women facing challenges and finding love and happiness along the way.

Be sure to read the other books in the series: Rose, Lily, and Mistletoe and Holly

Other series written by Judith Keim are receiving a lot of love: The Hartwell Women Series, The Beach House Hotel Series, The Fat Fridays Series, the Salty Key Inn Series, the Chandler Hill Inn series, and the books in the Seashell Cottage Collection.

Amazon

B&N

Kobo

iBooks

Google Play

~~~

~~~


About the Author

Judith Keim enjoyed her childhood and young-adult years in Elmira, New York, and now makes her home in Boise, Idaho, with her husband and their two dachshunds, Winston and Wally, and other members of her family.

While growing up, she was drawn to the idea of writing stories from a young age. Books were always present, being read, ready to go back to the library, or about to be discovered. All in her family shared information from the books in general conversation, giving them a wealth of knowledge and vivid imaginations.

A hybrid author who both has a publisher and self-publishes, Ms. Keim writes heart-warming novels about women who face unexpected challenges, meet them with strength, and find love and happiness along the way. Her best-selling books are based, in part, on many of the places she’s lived or visited and on the interesting people she’s met, creating believable characters and realistic settings her many loyal readers love. Ms. Keim loves to hear from her readers and appreciates their enthusiasm for her stories.

To sign up for her newsletter, go here: http://eepurl.com/bZ0ICX

Contact Links

Website

Twitter

Facebook

Instagram

Book Bub

Amazon Author Page

BookBuzz

~~~

Purchase Links

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

B&N

Google Play

~~~

RABT Book Tours & PR

~~~

#BookSale “Enemies of Doves” by Shanessa Gluhm

cover

~~~

Synopsis:

On a summer night in 1932, twelve-year-old Joel Fitchett wanders into an East Texas diner badly beaten and carrying his unconscious brother, Clancy. Though both boys claim they have no memory of what happened, the horrific details are etched into their minds as deep as the scar left across Joel’s face.

Thirteen years later, both men still struggle with the aftershocks of that long-ago night and the pact they made to hide the truth. When they find themselves at the center of a murder investigation, they make a decision that will change everything. A second lie, a second pact and for a time, a second chance.

In 1991 college student, Garrison Stark, travels to Texas chasing a rumor that Clancy Fitchett is his biological grandfather. Clancy has been missing since 1946 and Garrison hopes to find him, and in doing so, find a family. What he doesn’t expect to discover is a tangle of secrets spanning sixty years involving Clancy, Joel and the woman they both loved, Lorraine.

Told in alternating timelines from World War II to 1992, Enemies of Doves is a tale of family secrets, jealousy and deception perfect for fans of Kate Morton and Allen Eskens.

 

99c for a limited time!

Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

~~~

Felicia’s Review

(June 2020)

5/5 Stars!

I’ve read some amazing thriller and suspense stories this year, but the historical mystery, Enemies of Doves, takes the mid-year prize!

After losing his parents to tragedy in 1991, Garrison Stark finds himself on the journey of a lifetime after trying to piece together the ramblings of his grandmother. He’s losing her to dementia so he must find his own answers.

Tom Fitchett may be a prominent dentist in his small Texas town in 1941, but to his sons, Joel and Clancy, he’s an overbearing tyrant who’s never satisfied with anything they do. Older by almost two years, Joel is the responsible one always charged with looking out for his brother.

Being the responsible one will lead to life-changing trauma for Joel, just as serving in WWII will change the carefree, self-serving Clancy.

Loved Joel. He was a sympathetic character who took on burdens that weren’t his to shoulder, most by choice because it was his nature, and others forced upon him by his father and brother. I didn’t care for Clancy for much of the story. He was the golden boy trouble always eluded.

Or so it appeared.

Lorraine Applewhite? She too was too self-centered for far too long. It’s easy to say she was caught between two brothers, but to me, Lorraine put herself there. Joel didn’t deserve that.

I’m not one for dual timelines, but this one was perfection with the fifty-year time-span moving forward in tandem with the present. Garrison’s search will cause time to collide, unlocking a lifetime of secrets, and THE PLOT TWIST OF 2020!

Stellar writing and well-developed characters make this read one to not be missed. Because… that plot twist and the doves!

Download this one today!

Enjoy!

~~~

#NewRelease “Dangerous Pursuits: 15 Stories From Today’s Most Popular Mystery and Suspense Authors”

cover

~~~

Crisp Days. Cold Nights. Dangerous Pursuits.

The chill of fall brings with it a hint of peril in Dangerous Pursuits.

Consecrated Sacrifice by Mary Alford:

CIA Officer Branch Collins is saved by a dead woman. Is she a hero or a traitor? Everything rides on finding out the answer.

The Last Day by Lisa Harris:

When Dr. Hope McQuaid stops at the scene of an accident on a lonely west Texas highway, she becomes a bargaining chip for two dangerous fugitives with nothing to lose.

Sleep Deprived by Therese Heckenkamp:

When sleep deprivation skews her judgment, grieving young mother Mae risks everything to save a baby—only to wind up accused of a crime.

A Time to Hunt by Cynthia Hickey:

A bestselling author finds himself mired in a plot straight out of one of his books, and the clock is ticking down to the death of those around him.

Don’t Look Down by Gina Holder:

Can she prove a killer’s guilt before he silences her forever? Erynn, owner of the Gourmet Gal food truck, witnesses a murder, but no one believes her.

Deadly Heights by Ronie Kendig:

Heiress and experienced climber Jolie Decouteau doesn’t believe in coincidences, so getting acute mountain sickness while on a hike shortly after her father is found dead convinces her that someone is trying to kill her.

Never Think Twice by Loree Lough:

One of the felons recovery agent Fitz delivered to authorities has escaped from his maximum-security prison and is coming after Fitz and his loved ones.

A Dark Silence by Dana R. Lynn:

Deaf since birth, Heidi Martin is excited about her new career as a counselor at the school for the deaf. Until she walks in on a murder and must flee to stay alive.

Amish Justice by Ann Malley:

In the cross-hairs of an Amish criminal kingpin, Naomi Boentreger is forced to uncover family secrets first and trust the man she once loved yet now barely recognizes.

A Dark Road Home by Dana Mentink:

After a tragic mistake, Lola Armstrong left the U.S. Marshals and rancher Abe Everhart far behind. Now Abe’s on her doorstep with retrograde amnesia and his twin niece and nephew in tow.

Courage on the Run by J. Carol Nemeth:

When innkeeper Casey Hartman witnesses a murder, can guest DEA Agent Will Kerns keep her safe from the killer as they head out on the run?

Stepping from Shadows by Cara Putman:

When Emma Donahue goes home, it’s time to find answers or die trying. She has days to discover the truth or she’ll lose her inheritance. After years of trusting no one, can she risk relying on Lance Updike?

Deadly Catalyst by Sharee Stover:

What starts as an online computer game becomes a life-and-death struggle for Jorja Hale and her teen brother, plummeting them into a deadly underground network.

Protecting the Heiress by Terri Reed:

A reluctant heiress needs the protection of the intelligence officer who broke her heart if she is to make it to the reading of her father’s will alive.

The Winter Pearl by Lenora Worth:

When antique-jewelry store owner Hannah Dupree mistakenly receives a priceless pearl necklace, someone is out to kill her and get it back.

99c at all online digital retailers!

Amazon US

Amazon UK

~~~

#NewRelease “When the Westons Went To Moscow” by Roxie Rivera

cover

~~~

Wicked. Scandalous. Notorious.

For most of his life, Ty Weston was proud of his wild reputation. He enjoyed the infamy and attention, loved seeing his name and face splashed all over social media and had more one-night stands than he can even remember.

But that’s all in the past now. The reformed bad boy lives a calmer, quieter life, spending all his free time with Russian bodyguard Vasya, if he’s in town, and putting in long hours at the PR firm he co-founded when Vasya travels. There’s only one thing that would make Ty even happier—Vasya quitting his job, moving to Houston full-time and building a life together.

Different. Strange. Weird.

Astronomer Cait Weston has been called those things her entire life, often by her exasperated and embarrassed mother. But beautiful, funny, interesting? Those words are as alien to her as the social skills she has yet to master.

Cait is perplexed by wealthy oligarch Mikhail’s interest in her, but she can’t deny the unexpected feelings he inspires. He seems to like her just the way she is, not caring that she’s blunt, awkward and rigid. Confused by Mikhail’s romantic pursuit, she calls the only person in the world she trusts for guidance.

Concerned that cutthroat businessman Mikhail is chasing his innocent, naïve sister for all the wrong reasons, Ty books the first flight bound for Russia—and Vasya.

Together in Moscow, Ty and Cait navigate the highs and lows of modern love.

But only one of the Weston siblings will leave Moscow with their happily ever after.

Available at all online digital retailers!

Amazon

~~~

#BookTour “The Ghosts of Thorwald Place” by Helen Power

The Ghosts of Thorwald Place by Helen Power Banner

October 1-31, 2021 Virtual Book Tour

cover

Synopsis:

 
Trust No One. Especially your neighbors.

Rachel Drake is on the run from the man who killed her husband. She never leaves her safe haven in an anonymous doorman building, until one night a phone call sends her running. On her way to the garage, she is murdered in the elevator. But her story doesn’t end there.

She finds herself in the afterlife, tethered to her death spot, her reach tied to the adjacent apartments. As she rides the elevator up and down, the lives of the residents intertwine. Every one of them has a dark secret. An aging trophy wife whose husband strays. A surgeon guarding a locked room. A TV medium who may be a fraud. An ordinary man with a mysterious hobby.

Compelled to spend eternity observing her neighbors, she realizes that any one of them could be her killer.

And then, her best friend shows up to investigate her murder.

Praise for The Ghosts of Thorwald Place:

“[An] enticing debut . . . Distinctive characters complement the original plot. Power is off to a promising start.” —Publishers Weekly

“A creative, compulsively readable mystery—haunted by strange entities and told from the unique perspective of a ghost. I couldn’t put it down.” —Jo Kaplan, author of It Will Just Be Us

Book Details:

Genre: Thriller/Supernatural

Published by: CamCat Books

Publication Date: October 5th 2021

Number of Pages: 368

ISBN: 0744301432 (ISBN13: 9780744301434)

Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads | CamCat Books

~~~

Read an excerpt:

Chapter 3

It takes forever for someone to find my body. At six, the elevator is called to the fourth floor, and an early riser greets the sight of my body with a shrill scream. He stumbles backward, clutching his briefcase to his chest. I get the impression that he’s never discovered a grisly crime scene before. I, on the other hand, am enveloped in the cool indifference that seems to accompany death.

He staggers back to his apartment, shrieking hysterically all the way. Several of his neighbors rush out into the hall. Each person is in various stages of undress. A pregnant woman wearing a silk bathrobe and only one slipper. A man whose face is coated in shaving cream, save for a single bare strip down his left cheek. The look of horror on their faces would have been amusing if I were in the mood for dark humor. The elevator doors slide shut, and I am launched to another floor, where I startle another early commuter. The elevator doors close on the stunned woman’s face, lurching toward its next stop. I’m destined for repetition. Perhaps this is hell.

The police finally arrive, call the elevator to the ground floor, and put it out of service. I have now informally met a quarter of the building’s occupants, which is more than I met in the two years I lived here. A handful of police officers form a perimeter, trying to block the sight of my corpse from the prying eyes of my nosey neighbors. I hover by the elevator door as forensic investigators get to work examining my corpse. I try not to watch—disgusted by the sight of my limp body, which is coated in blood that has begun to cake—but the process is mesmerizing. The flash of cameras, the murmur of voices, and the hypnotic movement of pencils as they scribble in pristine, white notebooks. The forensic experts step gingerly around the scene, careful not to disturb anything, as they scrutinize my body from all angles. As they work, I can’t stop staring at my face. My eyes are still open and glazed over with a milky white sheen. My skin is nearly white, a shocking contrast to the deep crimson gash across my neck. My lips are parted in a soundless scream. A forensic investigator in a white bodysuit steps in front of me, cutting off my view. Relief floods through me, and I turn away before the sight of my own corpse enthralls me once again. I know I gained consciousness only minutes after my death, because blood was still dripping where the arterial spray arched across the walls, looking as if an artist had decided to add a splash of color to the monochromatic gray. I was reluctant to leave my body, but I had no idea what else to do. I had no moment of shock, no moment of revelation where I realized I was dead. I knew it from the instant I opened my eyes and saw the world from the other side. A world which looks different in death. Everything is a little grayer, a little faded. Voices and sounds have a slight echo. It’s as though I’m experiencing everything through a thin film—some indescribable substance that separates the world of the living from mine.

But why am I still here? My body has been found; the police are clearly investigating. It won’t take long for them to figure out it was he who killed me. I leave the elevator and glance around the lobby. I don’t see any obvious doorways or bright lights to follow. How will I know where to go? I bite back the pang of disappointment when I realize that none of my lost loved ones are here to welcome me. No husband. No parents. No Grumpelstiltskin, my childhood dog. Where are they, and how do I find my way to them?

I’m self-aware enough to know that I’ve always feared the unknown, and it’s obvious that this hasn’t changed in death. Instead of searching for my escape, I stay locked in place, eyes glued to the crime scene investigators. After what feels like an eternity, the medical examiner deposits my body into a black bag and wheels it out of the building. I begin to follow. Maybe if I slip back into my body, I’ll awaken, and everyone will laugh, like this was all just one big misunderstanding.

I’ll spend the rest of my days wearing a scarf, elegantly positioned to hide my gaping neck wound, like the girl in that urban legend.

I slam into an invisible wall about a dozen feet from the elevator. Slightly disoriented, I shake my head. I press forward.

Again, I’m stopped by an imperceptible force. I reach out, and my hand flattens midair. I run my hand along this invisible barrier, but it seems to run as high as I can reach and down to the marble floor.

I follow the barrier, tracing my hand along it. It cuts across the entire lobby, but not in a straight line. It’s slightly curved. Beyond the wall, I can see the medical examiner exit the building with my body, leaving my soul behind. I slam a hand against the invisible wall once again, but there’s no give.

My attention is drawn by the sound of a familiar grating voice. Elias Strickland, the concierge, is speaking with a police officer who looks like he’s desperate to leave. The invisible wall can wait. I approach the pair to eavesdrop.

“We have excellent security here,” Elias says. His perpetually nasal voice is exacerbated by the tears that stream down his face. “How could this have happened? My residents will want an explanation immediately.”

“We have someone reviewing the security footage of the exits. If the killer left the building, we’ll have them on film,” the police officer says.

If they left the building? Are you saying they might still be here?” Elias tugs at his cheap tie.

The killer might still be in the building. I look around and notice for the first time that the residents aren’t allowed to simply leave. Police officers guard the front door, questioning each individual before they allow them to go to work or to the spa or to do whatever they think is more important than mourning my death.

“What can you tell me about the victim? Ms. Rachel Anne Drake?” the police officer asks.

“Well . . .” Elias runs a hand through his thinning, brown hair. “She is—was—an odd one. She rarely spoke to anyone. She kept to herself. I think I was her only friend in the building.”

I stare at him, just now realizing that the tears streaming down his face are for me. I feel a pang of guilt. I’ve never considered us “friends.” I interact with him once every few weeks—only when I have mail to pick up or complaints about the security guards.

Elias continues, “She even had her groceries delivered. I haven’t seen her leave the building in months.”

The police officer suddenly looks interested. He pulls a small, wire-bound notebook from his pocket and uncaps his pen.

“Do you think it’s possible that she may have been hiding from someone?”

“Possibly . . . She was always really interested in the security in the building. Like that was the main reason why she moved here, not the fabulous party room or the services I provide as concierge.” I wince in pity as he says the word with a dreadful French accent. He should have picked a line of work that he could pronounce.

“Did she have any visitors?”

“There was a man who used to come around, but I haven’t seen him in a few months,” Elias says. At the police officer’s prompting, he continues on to describe him. I realize he’s talking about Luke.

The police officer asks a few follow-up questions, and I’m surprised by just how much Elias knows. He knows the date and time of my weekly grocery deliveries, that once every couple of weeks I’ll treat myself to pizza delivered from the greasy place down the street, and that I get a haul of books delivered every time BMV Books has a sale.

“Well, if you think of anything else, please contact us immediately.” I peer over the police officer’s shoulder to look at the scribbles in his notebook, but he’s used a shorthand that I can’t decipher.

A nearly identical police officer emerges from the security office holding a flash drive. He glances at the concierge, then turns to his partner and begins speaking rapid French.

“The video doesn’t show anybody leaving the building between one and two this morning. But apparently, there was a power outage for about five minutes, and the killer could have left during that window.”

“No! That power outage happened before I died. The power came back, and then he killed me.” I blink and glance around. I hadn’t thought I’d be able to speak.

It makes no difference. Neither police officer reacts to the sound of my voice. I look at Elias, but he’s watching the officers intently. I turn my attention to the rest of the people milling about, but none of them seem to have heard me either. But I’m not yet discouraged.

I approach the pot-bellied man standing the closest to the crime scene tape. He cranes his neck to see into the elevator.

“THERE’S NOTHING TO SEE HERE!” I shout into his face. He doesn’t react. I try to shake him, but my hands fall through his fleshy body. I feel nothing—no chill, no warmth—as I slide my hands through him. I examine his face, but it’s clear that he doesn’t sense me in the slightest.

I strategically progress through the lobby, shouting at each bystander, attempting to reach them through any means.

I try everything I can remember having seen in movies about ghosts—from waving my hands through their heads to shouting obscenities in their ears. No one reacts. No one so much as shivers.

I’m angry, disappointed, and beginning to feel helpless. I brace myself, preparing to do my calming breathing technique, but there are no symptoms of a panic attack. My body is overcome by the numbness of being incorporeal. I could get used to this. I suppose I’ll have to.

I glance around, noticing that the police officers have long gone, and they’ve been replaced by a cleaning crew of four burly men who are crammed into the elevator. They’ve already bleached the walls in an attempt to remove all trace of my messy execution. The lobby is nearly empty now. Only Elias stands at his station, compulsively wringing his hands in between fielding calls from curious residents and the media.

I survey the expansive, high-ceilinged lobby. Unlike the rest of the building, it was designed with the sole purpose of impressing visitors. The floors are marble, polished to near perfection. The wallpaper is a pale blue with gold foil accents in the shape of falling leaves. A hefty, ornate clock is the only decoration on the stretch of the wall across from the front desk. There are two wing chairs and a sofa positioned underneath it. It serves as a sort of waiting area, though in my two years living in this building, I’ve never seen a single person sitting out here.

I can only access half of the lobby, so I need to find a way around this invisible barrier. I approach the elevator and look down the hall to the right. I tentatively step through the wall. I’m in the guest suite that’s reserved for visitors of building residents. The bed is neatly made, with the corners of the bedspread tucked tightly. There’s a lounge area sparsely decorated with cool tones. A gray, leather couch is angled toward an impressively-sized TV.

The room is windowless, but a single painting of a blue sky over a grassy field hangs on the wall opposite the door, creating the illusion of something beyond.

I stride across the plain gray rug and easily pass through this wall as well. I’m in the ground-level parking garage, which is located below the building. I continue to walk until I slam against the barrier. It doesn’t hurt, but it’s disorienting.

I place my hand on the barrier and follow it around until I reach the wall twenty feet from where I entered. The barrier is clearly circular. Is it meant to keep me contained? I shake my head at that thought, then I continue to follow the barrier through the wall, out of the garage, and into the library.

With gorgeous oak-paneled walls and towering bookshelves, the building’s library is quite a sight to behold. The leather couches look comfortable, with antique copper lamps strategically positioned between them. I’ve been down here several times over the last two years, but I never dawdle. I usually grab a handful of books and hurry back upstairs to the safety of my apartment, where I can actually relax and enjoy my reading.

I walk through the room divider into the “party” area. The dim overhead lights reveal a bar in the corner, which is framed by tall mirrors, making the room seem larger than it actually is. I scan the rest of the room. Circular tables are set up around a polished dance floor. I quickly hit another barrier only a few feet into the room.

I follow this barrier, clockwise, until I’ve made an entire lap of the enclosure. I was right. It is a circle. There are no breaks or gaps in the wall; nothing I can slip through to escape. What is this barrier? Who put it here? I have so many questions and no one to answer them.

Back in the lobby, the cleaning crew has finished their sterilization of the elevator. A starchy-looking woman stands in Elias’ face, complaining loudly about the inconvenience of having only one operating elevator. I’m glad that my death is nothing more than a disruption to her “busy” life. Shouldn’t she be disturbed that a brutal murder occurred hours ago in that very elevator? That the killer hasn’t even been caught? Hell, she should be worried that it’s haunted.

She spins on her heel and leaves a bedraggled Elias in her wake. She scowls at the cleaners, who are gathering their supplies and politely averting their eyes from her shrewd gaze. She presses the elevator button and boards the other one, which was already idling on this floor. She didn’t even have to wait five seconds. I’d love to see what a convenient elevator experience is like for her.

After she’s left, Elias tips the cleaners and reactivates the elevator. The doors slide shut, as if sealing my fate.

A man in snug jogging shorts strolls into the building, salutes Elias, and heads to the elevators. Elias nods and returns to his station. I decide to head over toward him to see what exactly he keeps behind the desk. It lies just beyond the invisible wall, so I might be able to see what he always stares at so intently on his computer.

Just as I reach the edge of the invisible barrier, a powerful sensation of vertigo overcomes me. My skin begins to crawl. I stare down at my arms in astonishment. My entire body is vaporizing, shredding into a million pieces, wisps of flesh fading into the world around me. I squeeze my eyes shut tightly, willing the end to come quickly.

***

Excerpt from The Ghosts of Thorwald Place by Helen Power. Copyright 2021 by Helen Power. Reproduced with permission from CamCat Books. All rights reserved.

 

~~~

Author Bio:

Helen Power

Helen Power is obsessed with ghosts. She spends her free time watching paranormal investigation TV shows, hanging out in cemeteries, and telling anyone who’ll listen about her paranormal experiences. She is a librarian living in Saskatoon, Canada, and has several short story publications, including ones in Suspense Magazine and Dark Helix Press’s Canada 150 anthology, “Futuristic Canada”. The Ghosts of Thorwald Place is her first novel.

Catch Up With Our Author:

HelenPower.ca

Goodreads

BookBub – @helen_power

Instagram – @powerlibrarian

Twitter – @helenpowerbooks

Facebook – @helenpowerauthor

~~~

Tour Participants:

Visit these other great hosts on this tour for more great reviews, interviews, guest posts, and giveaways!

~~~

Join In:

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Helen Power & CamCat Publishing. There will be Five (6) winners for this tour. Each of the winners will each receive 1 print ARC edition of The Ghosts of Thorwald Place by Helen Power (US, Canada, and UK shipping addresses Only). The giveaway begins on October 1 and ends on November 2, 2021. Void where prohibited.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

~~~

Get More Great Reads at Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours

~~~

 

#GuestBlogger Behind the Scenes: The Viking’s Witch (A Historical Paranormal Romance) by Kelli A. Wilkins

This “Behind the Scenes” blog is part of a series examining my romance novels. In each blog, I’ll talk about why I wrote the book, share my thoughts on the plot and/or characters, and reveal what I loved most (or least) about writing the book. Warning: Blogs may contain spoilers.

cover

Today I’m blogging about one of my favorite historical romances, The Viking’s Witch. The book is set in Celtic Scotland and blends a sensual love story with adventure and paranormal elements.

I loved everything about writing this book—the characters, the setting, the plot—and readers and reviewers loved it, too. When the book was originally published in 2012 by Medallion Press, it won an IPPY award for best historical romance e-book.

I’ve written a few detailed blogs about the characters, setting, research, the gritty details, conflicts, violence, and even the use of magic in the book. I won’t rehash all that here (you can read the other blogs in the blog section of my site: https://www.kelliwilkins.com/blog , but I will talk a bit about the origin of the book.

Like many of my romances, the idea for the story popped into my head one morning. I know it sounds strange, but the book came to me in a dream. It played out like I was watching a movie. When I woke up, I grabbed a pen and paper and wrote down everything I remembered. It took me about two hours, and from there I created an outline and started writing.

I had to do a lot of research while I wrote the book. I knew the story took place in Scotland, but I wasn’t sure where—or when. I needed to set the book in a place where the Vikings traveled in their early years of exploration, but it had to be an isolated location. After much back-and-forth, I decided on the Orkney Islands, then I had to decide on which island to set the story. (There are 70 different islands, but only 20 are inhabited.)

After I knew the setting, I did more research to learn what life was like in thatcover time period for Odaria and Rothgar. I had to make the details realistic for the characters and the readers. Once I got a feel for what everyday life was like for each of them, I weaved the details into the story.

One way I did this was to have Odaria ask Rothgar questions (How did Norsemen travel so far across the ocean? What are their ships like?) and address the differences in their backgrounds. Rothgar also comments on how things are different on the island compared to his home and is proud to teach Odaria about his Nordic culture.

When writing, I also faced another big challenge: technically, Odaria and Rothgar would have been speaking different languages and would have trouble communicating. So I had to find a clever way for them to understand each other. In essence, I had to blend their two cultures together in a way that flowed with the story.

The opening scene is very powerful, and it was one of my favorites to write. When we first meet Odaria, she is about to be burned at the stake for being a witch. Her fellow villagers have turned against her, accused her of murder, and she’s been betrayed by everyone she knows. It’s a very dark time for her, and although deep down she is afraid, she doesn’t show it.

Instead, she calls down a curse on the villagers, and seconds later, screaming “demons” appear out of the darkness and capture most of her tormentors. Odaria is saved from the pyre—only to find herself facing another big problem—hordes of Norsemen have invaded the island.

coverIn the beginning of the story I deliberately kept the truth about Odaria’s “abilities” vague. Did she really conjure up the Viking warriors who unwittingly saved her from certain death? Or was it all a coincidence? I wanted readers to follow the story and wonder “does she have abilities or not?” Is Rothgar right when he suspects Odaria is using trickery and manipulating circumstances to scare people into thinking she’s a witch?

Over the course of the book, Odaria never denies being a witch. She warns Rothgar not to cross her or she’ll hex him. Rothgar laughs at her threat. He calls her “my little witch” and makes fun of her… For a while.

Later, Rothgar needs Odaria’s help and tells her to prove she has magic powers. Although reluctant, Odaria doesn’t disappoint. After a few highly charged scenes, readers and Rothgar learn the truth about Odaira’s abilities. I loved showing readers (and Rothgar) Odaria’s powers of clairvoyance, telekinesis, and psychometry. The scenes that included the “magic” elements were a lot of fun to write.

Rothgar and Odaria are my favorite historical romance couple. Odaria is strong-willed and doesn’t take any nonsense from Rothgar. Although she’s tough and feisty, Rothgar uncovers a vulnerable, soft side to her. And while Rothgar appears gruff and violent on the outside, underneath he’s really a gentle and sensitive man. Together, they make a pretty good team. There’s lots of push/pull between them and plenty of hot love scenes.

If you love historical romances, paranormal romances, or romances filled with drama, emotional rollercoasters, and danger, you’ll want to read The Viking’s Witch. I’m happy to say readers and reviewers fell in love with Rothgar and Odaria as much as I did.

Here is the summary and book links:

cover

The Viking’s Witch

Scotland, 803 A.D.

 About to be burned at the stake by her fellow villagers, Odaria does what any betrayed witch facing certain death would do. She calls down a curse. Within seconds, rampaging Norsemen raid the village, capturing everyone except her.

But her reprieve is short-lived, and Odaria lands in the clutches of the Norse leader Rothgar. Can she remain true to herself and fight her growing attraction to this domineering man, or will she fall under his influence and be used for his ambitions?

After Rothgar witnesses Odaria’s powers firsthand, he strikes a bargain with her. The raven-haired beauty will use her magical abilities to help him with his quest in exchange for safe passage off the isle. But can this cunning woman be trusted, or is she using him to exact vengeance on her village?

Together they must fight bloodthirsty villagers, battle a mutinous band of Norsemen, find a missing Norse ship, and learn to trust each other…before time runs out.


Order your copy here:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/%20ebook/dp/B07T15MHSW

All other platforms: https://books2read.com/u/4EQe0o

Read reviews here: https://www.kelliwilkins.com/the-viking-s-witch

 

I hope you enjoyed this “Behind the Scenes” look at the making of this sensual historical romance. I welcome questions and comments from readers and other authors. Contact me via the form on my site or on social media.

Happy Reading,

Kelli A. Wilkins

 ~~~

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kelli A Wilkins

Kelli A. Wilkins is an award-winning author who has published more than 100 short stories, 20+ romance novels, 7 non-fiction books, and 5 horror ebooks. Her romances span many genres and settings, and she likes to scare readers with her horror stories.

Her non-fiction tale, “The Dog That Wouldn’t Bark” recently appeared in the Chicken Soup for the Soul: My Hilarious, Heroic, Human Dog anthology.

She also released two horror shorts, More Than I Bargained For and Silent Sentinel in 2021.

In January 2021, Kelli published Journaling Every Week: 52 Topics to Get You Writing. This fun and innovative guide to journaling is filled with hundreds of thought-provoking prompts designed to get you writing about your feelings and emotions.

Kelli posts on her Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKelliWilkins and Twitter: www.Twitter.com/KWilkinsauthor.

Visit her website/blog www.KelliWilkins.com for a full title list and to find all her social media links.

~~~

#BookTour “Pixies in the Mist” by Rasta Musick

pixies tour banner

~~~

Fantasy

Date Published: 10-05-2021

Publisher: Cinnabar Moth

Jake had drifted to Japan without any serious intent, and it was going… okay. He had made friends in the local Salsa community, his Japanese was improving, but for Jake the familiar feeling that had dogged him most of his life—that something special should be happening—had struck again.

Kenneth had been assigned to Japan by the pixie queen years ago, which is just enough time for a pixie to get bored and complacent while keeping tabs on the local talent. Most humans had no magic, and most magical humans didn’t know it was their power that made their food taste better, their paintings more vibrant, or people like them more.

When the two met, the spark in Jake gave Kenneth’s role a new urgency. Jake didn’t just have magic, he had a wild and unpredictable kind seen only once in a generation. How could Kenneth keep Jake’s magic from falling into enemy hands? Kill him? Recruit him? Somehow keep him ignorant?

Jake’s magic had quietly led him to Japan, subtly influencing every choice in his life. That something special Jake had been waiting for was about to happen, ensuring his and Kenneth’s lives would never be boring again.

~~~

~~~

EXCERPT

Jake stood up and walked into his shower room to get ready for a night of dancing. It was only recently that the separation of his toilet and shower didn’t make him uncomfortable. To someone else, it might have been strange that he felt pride from having gotten used to such a minor aspect of his life in Japan, but it was part of his life that he had to deal with daily. Every small comfort mattered when adjusting to a new country, as Jake had quickly found out. Things were different than visiting on vacation. It had already been a few months since he had moved to Japan on a student visa. The five-day-a-week Japanese course he was taking filled up his mornings and some of his afternoons. Jake once again wondered why he had signed up for morning classes when he hated waking up early. Thankfully, he had studied Japanese before coming. He couldn’t imagine being as lost as some of the people he met during class. The thought made him shudder as he started the water.

~~~

About The Author

Rasta Musick spent the first 12 years of his life in California before moving to Japan with his family. After graduating from college with a Bachelor’s in economics at the age of 16, he spent the years after learning Japanese and working. Having spent more than half his life in Japan, he’s confident that it’s his home.

With many different hobbies, chief of them being Latin dance, he keeps himself physically active as well as mentally active as much as he can. The Latin dance community in Japan is alive and, surprisingly, quite large.

Rasta has lupus and hereditary coproporphyria. Given their complicated nature, he’s had to learn a lot to adapt and manage them. The process also taught him a lot about managing other aspects of his life, and all of this influences his writing.

Contact Links

Website

Twitter: @RastaMusick

~~~

Purchase Links

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Smashwords

~~~

Rafflecopter

~~~

RABT Book Tours & PR

~~~

#BookBlitz “Lead in Life, People. Passion. Persistence: Succeed in the New Era of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion” by Dr. Laura Murillo

~~~

Succeed in the New Era of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Business / Leadership / Biography

 

Date Published: September 28, 2021

What do a single rose in a crystal vase, a box of tomatoes, a knitting needle, a basketball, and a tingling earlobe have in common? They are all signals to Dr. Laura Murillo to live life to the fullest every day. A high-energy, results-focused change agent in the diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) space, her undeniable passion for life stands as the foundation for her personal and professional brand.

As President and CEO of the award-winning Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, she has the uncanny ability to see a situation, not for what it is, but for what it can be. In Lead in Life, People. Passion. Persistence: Succeed in the New Era of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Murillo guides readers through the incredible, sometimes devastating, and victorious experiences that comprise her success—from earning a doctorate while pregnant, parenting a toddler, managing a parent’s illness, and working full time, to hosting multiple TV and radio shows in English and Spanish concurrently, and being appointed to the Washington, DC Federal Reserve Board’s Community Advisory Council, and more.

She uses her lived experiences as the daughter of immigrants, a woman, an executive, a media producer and host to inform her perspectives and insights as an authority on DEI, guiding corporations, organizations, and institutions to adopt a genuine culture of DEI. In this new era of DEI, corporations must make a solid, lasting commitment to full representation, fairness, and inclusion of all voices in every decision, at every level of a corporation, all the time.

Lead in Life illustrates why everyone in a corporation has value and a voice that must be heard.

~~~

About the Author

Dr. Laura Murillo is the President and CEO of the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Under her leadership, the Chamber has set unprecedented records in membership and revenue, becoming one of the most influential Chambers in the nation, a clear testament to her exceptional leadership. The youngest of nine children, Laura Murillo was born to Mexican immigrant parents and was raised in Houston’s East End/Magnolia, where she began working at age ten at her family’s restaurant. She is the proud mother of Marisa and Mia, both graduates of St. John’s School in River Oaks. Marisa earned a mechanical engineering degree from Columbia University, in New York City, and is an astrophysics researcher. Mia is a sophomore at Georgetown University in Washington DC and maintains highest honors.

Contact Links

Website

Twitter

Facebook

LinkedIn

Instagram

~~~

Purchase Link

Amazon

~~~

a Rafflecopter giveaway

~~~

RABT Book Tours & PR

~~~

#CoverReveal “Escape The Light” by A.R. Thomas

 

Escape the Light by AR Thomas

Standalone Dark Romance

 

PRE-ORDER: mybook.to/Escapethelight

 

#EscapetheLight #CoverReveal #ARThomas #DarkRomance #BareNakedWords

BLURB

How do you escape the light when you set out to make it shine so bright?

We should have never met, not in this life or the next.

We are two souls chained to the opposite spectrums of life.

Light and dark.

Day and night.

One cannot exist without the other.

I can no longer hide from my demons, but his are far worse. They swirl in his eyes and chase the fear from my mind.

He made me a deal, and I sold my soul in the hope of peace.
But darkness leaves its mark, and Callan Scott is danger personified.
He’s my ticket to freedom.
My way to a new life.

I’ve survived all these years. I can survive one more month.

One month is nothing, a mere blink in time.

It just leaves one question.

Will I survive him?

EXCERPT

“Raven-haired, you say?” I’m trying not to smile.

“Black as the night.” His eyes darken to molasses, and his hand raises and tucks a strand behind my ear.

“Sounds very dark.” I muse.

“Needs to be to deal with me,” he smirks.

“So this mistake you made. Did you punish who caused it?” I whisper.

“Yes, I signed her life to me when she is already running from a different kind of monster,” he mutters, his finger running down my neck to linger on my scattered pulse.

Meet the Author

A. R. Thomas is an Author from England who writes contemporary romance with an edge. After being an avid reader (and away with the fairies) for years she realized she needed more than to be on the receiving end of a good book, she wanted to deliver one. What started as a hobby soon became an obsession, and as they say the rest is history.

Angsty, edgy, romance heavy . . . the perfect recipe for any love story, right?

A. R. Thomas lives with her son, and when she’s not supporting him from the sidelines at his latest sporting event, she is usually, lost to the thought of a book. She manages to make the most innocent of things sound dirty; it’s both a gift and a curse, but thankfully her friends encourage her.

Social media links:

•INSTAGRAM

https://www.instagram.com/arthomasauthor/

•FACEBOOK

https://www.facebook.com/A-R-Thomas-108278984413511

•GOODREADS

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/20988815.A_R_Thomas

•TIKTOK

https://vm.tiktok.com/ZSJbCGJsQ/

•BOOKBUB

https://www.bookbub.com/profile/a-r-thomas

 

#BookBlitz “The Experience of Leadership” by Fred Stuvek Jr

TheExperience copy

Congratulations to author Fred Stuvek J.R. on the release of The Experience of Leadership. Read on for more details and a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card!

TEOL FINAL COVER REV 1

The Experience of Leadership

Publication Date: October 8th, 2021

Genre: Non-Fiction/ Career Guide/ Coaching

The Experience of Leadership is an anthology of stories, insights, and reflections from highly successful leaders that will motivate and inspire readers of all ages to embrace their journey as a leader.

With years of collective leadership experience, the 15 people featured share personal stories that illustrate that it’s about what leaders do, not just who they are that engenders trust, inspires action, and determines leadership. If you’re looking for practical, actionable and realistic insights into the leadership process you will love this book. Don’t just read about leadership – experience it.

About the Author

FredStuvekHeadshot

Fred Stuvek, Jr. is the author and curator of The Experience of Leadership. He has achieved extraordinary success in diverse realms. Born in West Virginia and raised in Pennsylvania, he has been inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame for achievements in football, basketball, baseball, and track. He graduated from the United States Naval Academy, after lettering three years as quarterback for the Midshipmen. After service as a Naval Officer, he transitioned to the business world where he has held senior leadership positions in private and public companies, both domestically and internationally. Key successes include an international medical imaging start-up that led to a successful IPO, and forming a private medical services company, which he subsequently sold. His first book, It Starts With You: Turn Your Goals Into Success, is one of the top ranked books for self-development, garnering praise for its no nonsense approach to going after what you want out of life. From the playing field, to the war room, to the board room his leadership and accomplishments have given him a distinct perspective and a results-oriented mindset. To learn more about Fred and his work, please visit https://fredstuvek.com/

Available on Amazon

Giveaway: Click the link below to enter for a chance to win a $25 Amazon e-Gift Card. Giveaway will close on Friday!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book Blitz Organized By:

R&R Book Tours