#NewRelease “Ridge: Day One (Ridge Series Book 1)” by Shawn P.B. Robinson


The darkest hour is just before dawn. But with bloodthirsty Beasts cutting brief lives shorter, can one man beat the ticking clock?

Rezin Hamel will protect his people until his dying breath. Resolving to carry on past every dearly departed loved one, the forty-four-year-old General has no idea how he’s lived over a decade beyond the average life expectancy. But when he’s shamed and cast out for an out-of-character act, he sets out to end the constant attacks from creatures staining the walls with death.

Searching for answers in society’s seedy underbelly, Hamel is shocked by the conditions ravaging the lower rungs of the city. But the strategic genius’s quest takes a staggering turn when he’s blindsided by a secret that could tear his tight-knit community to shreds.

Can Hamel restore his honor and stop the carnage before he’s the next one taken by the Dusk?

Ridge: Day One is the action-packed first book in the Ridge dystopian thriller series. If you like fantastic worlds, heart-trembling suspense, and twisted surprises, then you’ll love Shawn P. B. Robinson’s peek behind the Ridge veil.

Buy Ridge: Day One to mark the calendar of doom today!

“Ridge: Day One is a startling adult debut written with excellent style and stunning precision. Not a mark is missed, not a page lets you down.” Nathaniel Luscombe, hecticreadinglife

“WOW, this is a fantasy thriller filled with action and surprises. I really felt for General Rezin Hamel. His love for his people and family as well as everything he goes through in the story makes me respect his position in the story. I thought the Epilogue was perfect and left me wanting book 2 to be out now.” Delphia, Goodreads Reviewer

“The plot of Ridge is clever and exciting with lots of twists and turns and colorful characters including friends, enemies, and a race of deadly beasts. Ridge: Day One is an intelligent dark fantasy that gives its readers a true hero on a quest worth cheering for.” Scott Cahan, Author of Caged Animals and the Glazed Man series

“I enjoyed this book alot. It captivated my attention within the first few pages, it has a great storyline. The cultures are interesting and theres lots of action. I’m waiting for book 2 excited to see how it all unfolds.” Jordan Mitchel, Kickboxer Extreme

99c at time of posting!



#NewRelease “Hers, Times Two” by Anna Adler

Hers Two


Two fierce males. One tough woman.

But are they strong enough to confess their love?

Space pilot Eliza Arroyo Diaz has a mad crush on two of her crew mates, but judging by their reserved behavior, the feeling is not mutual. She doesn’t dare confess that she fantasizes about a three-way relationship with them. And even if the guys were somehow open to the idea, Liz has secrets that could cause her dismissal from the crew if they were found out.

Zaster and Jackal are obsessed with Liz, but they can’t bring themselves to tell her about it. What human woman would welcome the idea of a Crasnian alien and a human-alien hybrid wanting to share her, body and soul?

But as Liz seems to spend a lot of time with Rogue, the ship’s medic, Zaster and Jackal struggle to keep their distance. Can they find a connection with their chosen mate, or will the ghosts of the past ruin their chance for a happy end?

Note to reader: This is a steamy science fiction romance featuring action, suspense, and intense love scenes between the three main characters. It’s the fourth book in a series but can be read as a standalone. HEA guaranteed! If you enjoy hot romance involving not one but two beefy aliens, this might be the book for you!

99c at time of posting!



#NewRelease “Acquainted With Atlas (The Hero Reservist Book 1)” by Tina Martin


Army Reservist AKA Special Agent, Atlas Zayvian, has infiltrated Genetix Industries, not because he’s really a biochemist working on discovering breakthrough cures for common illnesses. No, his business here involves a woman with a mean strut who possesses effortless beauty and the brains to match.

She’s his ‘target’ – pharmaceutical scientist Bria Mallery.

Bria has no idea she’s in the agent’s crosshairs. Like all the other women at Genetix, she can’t deny the appeal of Atlas. With his blue eyes and caramel complexion, he’s a whole lot of eye candy and a whole lot of man. Bria soon discovers that his blatantly obvious, awkward personality is likely his downfall when it comes to establishing connections with people – that is until she begins to like the weirdness that comes along with him.

*Acquainted With Atlas is book one of a three-book series. For the best reading experience, these books should be read in order.

Kindle Unlimited



#Featured “Shadows in the Water: A Lou Thorne Thriller (Shadows in the Water Series Book 1)” by Kory M. Shrum


An original new series, with heart-pounding suspense and surprising twists.

Meet Louie Thorne. They didn’t kill her–and they’ll soon regret it.

When DEA agent Jack Thorne’s house is stormed by vengeful drug lords, both he and his wife are shot dead. Only his daughter Louie survives–by using a terrifying power that defies reason.

Piecing together a life in his absence, Louie embraces her gift and her rage under the force of a single need: revenge.

She will destroy the men that took her family. No matter the cost, no matter how many bullets, she won’t stop until justice has been well and truly served.

Praise for Shadows in the Water

★★★★★ “An amazing book with a unique premise!”

★★★★★ “Dark and suspenseful, Shadows in the Water sends tingles down your spine!”

★★★★★ “The main character is a serial killer, but it’s cool. She only kills the bad guys.”

FREE at time of posting!


#FREE “THE SUITCASE: Family Intrigue and Blackmail Mystery Thriller (Hansen Files Book 1)” by Mike Dixon

David didn’t see himself as a toy boy and he didn’t see Sue Lynne as a cougar. That was his first mistake. His second came when he agreed to collect a suitcase from Hong Kong and take it to Australia. His third mistake was to open the case.

Sue Lynne said it contained family memorabilia: old photographs and that sort of thing. David thought they were too old to be threatening and he was hopelessly wrong. The case contained dark secrets. From the moment he lifted the lid there was no escape. The past rushed out like an evil genie from a bottle and David was propelled through the vastness of Australia fighting for his life.

A multi-layered story, masterfully written with historical fact and imagination. A tale of political power, seduction, blackmail and family liaisons. Throw in secret service agents, hitmen and a treasure map and it takes wings. Mike Dixon has created a great novel.” (Wendy O’Hanlon, Acres Australia).

The Suitcase is Book 1 in the Hansen Files Series. Humphrey Hansen has lost his job as a university lecturer and is working as a junior officer in the Narcotics Bureau. David is a university dropout struggling to make a living in the diving industry. They are thrown together and become good friends.






#Spotlight “Tennessee’s Whiskey (The Whiskey Collection Book 1)” by L. Loren

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Grad student, Patricia Woods finds herself on the brink of homelessness. Needing a job that pays immediately, she reluctantly sets her sights on the local redneck bar where the bikers are notorious, and the tips are flowing.

All she wants is to make a little cash to pay her way through school, but what she finds is so much more. Her dream of finally having a family to call her own is just beyond her reach.

Single father, Weston Daniels, has built a nice life for him and his five-year old son. After escaping the “family business” all he wants is the peace and quiet of the south, and an occasional romp with a nameless woman.

He has a change of heart, when a beautiful African American woman dressed in orange bombards his bar. When his past catches up with him, he is faced with choosing between her life and the happiness he desires.


The Heroine









The Hero


About L. Loren

Bestselling author, L. Loren holds a Business Management Degree from the University of Mount Olive. As a former call center supervisor, her desire to write lay dormant for years, until she found the courage to live her dream. She is currently based in Birmingham, AL with her loving and supportive husband.

L. Loren created her own brand of erotic romance that she dubbed LoveRotica – Love stories with an edge of sexy. Her catalog of sexy stories is self-published and available on Amazon.

Her stories and poems have appeared in various anthologies, publications and literary journals. L. is also the curator of the Love is Color Anthology, available for free on Smashwords.

Follow her on Social Media

Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Blog  |  Pinterest 

  Goodreads  |  Amazon Author Page


Happy Hour


#GuestPost “Anarchy of the Mice” by Jeff Bond

Anarchy Of The Mice by Jeff Bond Banneron Tour July 1 – August 31, 2020


Making an Audiobook

by Jeff Bond

Audiobooks are fantastic. They’re the fastest growing segment of the publishing industry, and they’re an absolute lifesaver for someone like me, who—between parenting and cooking and an aggressive writing schedule—doesn’t have time to read with his eyes. What I do have is a nice juicy forty-five minutes early each morning when I’m walking the dog, and audiobooks allow me to spend that time in Diane Gabaldon’s eighteenth-century Scotland, John Updike’s suburbia, or Tana French’s Dublin.

When I released my first book two years ago, I knew I wanted to produce an audiobook version. I had no clue how to go about it, but naturally everyone’s favorite ten-ton gorilla was there to help: Amazon. Amazon has an entire audiobook ecosystem—creation, distribution, marketing, etc.—called ACX, Audiobook Creation Exchange. The system works quite well despite some quirks, like a messaging system the narrators all say stinks and a rigid workflow sequence that blows up if you accidentally push a project to its next phase before it’s ready. Using ACX, you can create an audiobook without having a Rolodex of professional narrators or cold calling Scott Brick. (If you don’t know the name, you must not be an audiobook person.)

You begin the process by uploading a sample of your book and instructions for potential narrators. Male or female, smooth or forceful, accented or not—those types of things. Then ACX opens up an audition, and narrated audio clips of your sample start rolling in. I received dozens my first day and even more the second. Each one is thrilling, the chance at finding that perfect voice for your story. Most will have some disqualifying mark against them. A weird cadence, or wrong mood, or a voice that just doesn’t fit your concept of the protagonist. Some you’ll nod along to and think, “Yeah, that could be my book.” But these don’t last long because soon enough you’ll run into that reader who just nails it—in whose voice every line sounds like notes from a symphony. And you’ve got your narrator.

Okay, not really; that was the streamlined, romanticized version. Auditions are exhausting. Beyond the sheer number of clips you need to consider and polite emails you’ll need to write, there’s the mental toll of saying no to all these supremely talented people. Authors are fairly conditioned to the shoe being on the other foot. We’re the ones giving out samples, scrapping for a chance to show our stuff, hoping to be picked over all the other creators in the marketplace. I listened to voice authors who’d been public radio anchors, classically trained singers, who had IMDB bios five pages long. I struck up email conversations with a few, and heard that most ACX jobs are industrial voiceovers from overseas—dry commercial work. The narrators generally don’t even get a note acknowledging their audition clips, which surely take hours to produce. So many of them would’ve given me an excellent audiobook, but I could only say yes to two.


Among the decisions I had to make was whether to have a single narrator voice all chapters or have separate male and female voices. Because The Winner Maker, my first book, had two roughly equal protagonists, one male and one female, I decided to use separate. Beyond that, there was the decision to do the narration “duet style,” where the two actors can trade off within the same chapter, or stick to one voice per chapter. I chose the latter, which simplified things.

From there, my narrators took the manuscript and did their thing—reading ten hours of my debut novel. I then had to listen to every last second of it and jot edits along the way. This was fine-grained, tedious work, made more complicated by the fact that I did it using those aforementioned forty-five dog-walking minutes each morning. Imagine tapping out a note on your phone about stressing the second syllable of “Rivard” rather than the first while 120 pounds of shaggy Newfoundland dog lurches after a squirrel, and you’ll know my struggle. Hopefully my neighbors got a laugh or two out of it.

My narrators, Natalie Duke and Brandon Paul Eells, are extraordinarily professional and did a great job. I found only minor fixes, one or two per chapter. Some were personal preference, how to pronounce a particular name or street. Other times I started to correct a pronunciation only to Google it and find I’d been saying the word wrong in my head all along—my narrator had actually gotten it right.

For all this, it was truly wonderful hearing my story come to life as an audiobook. I recorded one for Blackquest 40 and The Pinebox Vendetta as well, and my two releases in June—Anarchy of the Mice and Dear Durwood—will also be audiobooks. Audible has a long quality-check process; I expect them to pop up in late July or early August. If you’re looking for an introduction to my stories, I’d highly recommend trying an audiobook. They were hard work, but the end result was a lot of fun.



Anarchy of the Mice by Jeff Bond From Jeff Bond, author of Blackquest 40 and The Pinebox Vendetta, comes Anarchy of the Mice, book one in an epic new series starring Quaid Rafferty, Durwood Oak Jones, and Molly McGill: the trio of freelance operatives known collectively as Third Chance Enterprises. How far could society fall without data? Account balances, property lines, government ID records — if it all vanished, if everyone’s scorecard reset to zero, how might the world look? The Blind Mice are going to show us. Molly McGill is fighting it. Her teenage son has come downstairs in a T-shirt from these “hacktivists” dominating the news. Her daughter’s bus is canceled — too many stoplights out — and school is in the opposite direction of the temp job she’s supposed to be starting this morning. She is twice-divorced; her P.I. business, McGill Investigators, is on the rocks; what kind of life is this for a woman a mere twelve credit-hours shy of her PhD? Then the doorbell rings. It’s Quaid Rafferty, the charming — but disgraced — former governor of Massachusetts, and his plainspoken partner, Durwood Oak Jones. The guys have an assignment for Molly. It sounds risky, but the pay sure beats switchboard work. They need her to infiltrate the Blind Mice. Danger, romance, intrigue, action for miles — whatever you read, Anarchy of the Mice is coming for you.

Book Details:

Genre: Action-Adventure

Published by: Jeff Bond books

Publication Date: June 15, 2020

Number of Pages: 445

ISBN: 173225527X (978-1732255272)

Series: Third Chance Enterprises, #1

Purchase Links: Amazon | Goodreads


Read an excerpt:

CHAPTER ONE The first I ever heard of the Blind Mice was from my fourteen-year-old son, Zach. I was scrambling to get him and his sister ready for school, stepping over dolls and skater magazines, thinking ahead to the temp job I was starting in about an hour, when Zach came slumping downstairs in a suspiciously plain T-shirt. “Turn around,” I said. “Let’s see the back.” He scowled but did comply. The clothing check was mandatory after that vomiting-skull sweatshirt he’d slipped out the door in last month. Okay. No drugs, profanity, or bodily fluids being expelled. But there was something. An abstract computer-ish symbol. A mouse? Possibly the nose, eyes, and whiskers of a mouse? Printed underneath was, Nibble, nibble. Until the whole sick scam rots through. I checked the clock: 7:38. Seven minutes before we absolutely had to be out the door, and I still hadn’t cleaned up the grape juice spill, dealt with my Frizz City hair, or checked the furnace. For twenty minutes, I’d been hearing ker-klacks, which my heart said was construction outside but my head worried could be the failing heater. How bad did I want to let Zach’s shirt slide? Bad. “Is that supposed to be a mouse?” I said. “Like an angry mouse?” “The Blind Mice,” my son replied. “Maybe you’ve heard, they’re overthrowing the corporatocracy?” His eyes bulged teen sarcasm underneath those bangs he refuses to get cut. “Wait,” I said, “that group that’s attacking big companies’ websites and factories?” “Government too.” He drew his face back ominously. “Anyone who’s part of the scam.” “And you’re wearing their shirt?” He shrugged. I would’ve dearly loved to engage Zach in a serious discussion of socioeconomic justice—I did my master’s thesis on the psychology of labor devaluation in communities—except we needed to go. In five minutes. “What if Principal Broadhead sees that?” I said. “Go change.” “No.” “Zach McGill, that shirt promotes domestic terrorism. You’ll get kicked out of school.” “Like half my friends wear it, Mom.” He thrust his hands into his pockets. Ugh. I had stepped in parenting quicksand. I’d issued a rash order and Zach had refused, and now I could either make him change, starting a blow-out fight and virtually guaranteeing I’d be late my first day on the job at First Mutual, or back down and erode my authority. “Wear a jacket,” I said—a poor attempt to limit the erosion, but the best I could do. “And don’t let your great-grandmother see that shirt.” Speaking of, I could hear Granny’s slippers padding around upstairs. She was into her morning routine, and would shortly—at the denture-rinsing phase—be shouting down that her sink was draining slow again; why hadn’t the damn plumber come yet? Because I hadn’t paid one. McGill Investigators, the PI business of which I was the founder and sole employee (yes, I realized the plural name was misleading), had just gone belly-up. Hence the temp job. Karen, my six-year-old, was seated cheerily beside her doll in front of orange juice and an Eggo Waffle. “Mommy!” she announced. “I get to ride to school with you today!” The doll’s lips looked sticky—OJ?—and the cat was eyeing Karen’s waffle across the table. “Honey, weren’t you going to ride the bus today?” I asked, shooing the cat, wiping the doll with a dishrag. Karen shook her head. “Bus isn’t running. I get to ride in the Prius, in Mommy’s Prius!” I felt simultaneous joy that Karen loved our new car—well, new to us: 120K miles as a rental, but it was a hybrid—and despair because I really couldn’t take her. School was in the complete opposite direction of New Jersey Transit. Even if I took the turnpike, which I loathed, I would miss my train. Fighting to address Karen calmly in a time crunch, I said, “Are you sure the bus isn’t running?” She nodded. I asked how she knew. “Bus driver said, ‘If the stoplights are blinking again in the morning, I ain’t taking you.’” She walked to the window and pointed. “See?” I joined her at the window, ignoring the driver’s grammatical example for the moment. Up and down my street, traffic lights flashed yellow. “Blind Mice, playa!” Zach puffed his chest. “Nibble, nibble. The lights had gone out every morning this week at rush hour. On Monday, the news had reported a bald eagle flew into a substation. On Tuesday, they’d said the outages were lingering for unknown reasons. I hadn’t seen the news yesterday. Did Zach know the Blind Mice were involved? Or was he just being obnoxious? “Great,” I muttered. “Bus won’t run because stoplights are out, but I’m free to risk our lives driving to school.” Karen gazed up at me, her eyes green like mine and trembling. A mirror of my stress. Pull it together, Molly. “Don’t worry,” I corrected myself. “I’ll take you. I will. Let me just figure a few things out.” Trying not to visualize myself walking into First Mutual forty-five minutes late, I took a breath. I patted through my purse for keys, sifting through rumpled Kleenex and receipts and granola-bar halves. Granny had made her way downstairs and was reading aloud from a bill-collection notice. Zach was texting, undoubtedly to friends about his lame mom. I felt air on my toes and looked down: a hole in my hose. Fantastic. I’d picked out my cutest work sandals, but somehow I doubted the look would hold up with toes poking out like mini-wieners. I wished I could shut my eyes, whisper some spell, and wake up in a different universe. Then the doorbell rang. CHAPTER TWO Quaid Rafferty waited on the McGills’ front porch with a winning smile. It had been ten months since he’d seen Molly, and he was eager to reconnect. Inside, there sounded a crash (pulled-over coatrack?), a smack (skateboard hitting wall?), and muffled cross-voices. Quaid fixed the lay of his sport coat lapels and kept waiting. His partner, Durwood Oak Jones, stood two paces back with his dog. Durwood wasn’t saying anything, but Quaid could feel the West Virginian’s disapproval—it pulsed from his blue jeans and cowboy hat. Quaid twisted from the door. “School morning, right? I’m sure she’ll be out shortly.” Durwood remained silent. He was on record saying they’d be better off with a more accomplished operative like Kitty Ravensdale or Sigrada the Serpent, but Quaid believed in Molly. He’d argued that McGill, a relative amateur, was just what they needed: a fresh-faced idealist. Now he focused on the door—and was pleased to hear the dead bolt turn within. He was less pleased when he saw the face that appeared in the door glass. The grandmother. “Why, color me damned!” began the septuagenarian, yanking open the screen door. “The louse returns. Whorehouses all kick you out?” Quaid strained to keep smiling. “How are you this fine morning, Eunice?” Her face stormed over. “What’re you here for?” “We’re hoping for a word with Molly if she’s around.” He opened his shoulders to give her a full view of his party, which included Durwood and Sue-Ann, his aged bluetick coonhound. They made for an admittedly odd sight. Quaid and Durwood shared the same vital stats, six one and 180-something pounds, but God himself couldn’t have created two more different molds. Quaid in a sport coat with suntanned wrists and mussed-just-so blond hair. Durwood removing his hat and casting steel-colored eyes humbly about, jeans pulled down over his boots’ piping. And Sue with her mottled coat, rasping like any breath could be her last. Eunice stabbed a finger toward Durwood. “He can come in—him I respect. But you need to turn right around. My granddaughter wants nothing to do with cads like you.” Behind her, a voice called, “Granny, I can handle this. Eunice ignored this. “You’re a no-good man. I know it, my granddaughter knows it.” Veins showed through the chicken-y skin of her neck. “Go on, hop a flight back to Vegas and all your whores!” Before Quaid could counter these aspersions, Molly appeared. His heart chirped in his chest. Molly was a little discombobulated, bending to put on a sandal, a kid’s jacket tucked under one elbow—but those dimples, that curvy body…even in the worst domestic throes, she could’ve charmed slime off a senator. He said, “Can’t you beat a seventy-four-year-old woman to the door?” Molly slipped on the second sandal. “Can we please just not? It’s been a crazy morning.” “I know the type.” Quaid smacked his hands together. “So hey, we have a job for you.” “You’re a little late—McGill Investigators went out of business. I have a real job starting in less than an hour.” “What kind?” “Reception,” she said. “Three months with First Mutual.” “Temp work?” Quaid asked. “I was supposed to start with the board of psychological examiners, but the position fell through.” “How come?” “Funding ran out. The governor disbanded the board.” “So First Mutual…?” Molly’s eyes, big and leprechaun green, fell. “It’s temp work, yeah.” “You’re criminally overqualified for that, McGill,” Quaid said. “Hear us out. Please.” She snapped her arms over her chest but didn’t stop Quaid as he breezed into the living room followed by Durwood and Sue-Ann, who wore no leash but kept a perfect twenty-inch heel by her master. Two kids poked their heads around the kitchen doorframe. Quaid waggled his fingers playfully at the girl. Molly said, “Zach, Karen—please wait upstairs. I’m speaking with these men.” The boy argued he should be able to stay; upstairs sucked; wasn’t she the one who said they had to leave, like, immedia— “This is not a negotiation,” Molly said in a new tone. They went upstairs. She sighed. “Now they’ll be late for school. I’m officially the worst mother ever.” Quaid glanced around the living room. The floor was clutter free, but toys jammed the shelves of the coffee table. Stray fibers stuck up from the carpet, which had faded beige from its original yellow or ivory. “No, you’re an excellent mother,” Quaid said. “You do what you believe is best for your children, which is why you’re going to accept our proposition.” The most effective means of winning a person over, Quaid had learned as governor of Massachusetts and in prior political capacities, was to identify their objective and articulate how your proposal brought it closer. Part two was always trickier. He continued, “American Dynamics is the client, and they have deep pockets. If you help us pull this off, all your money troubles go poof.” A glint pierced Molly’s skepticism. “Okay. I’m listening.” “You’ve heard of the Blind Mice, these anarchist hackers?” “I—well, yes, a little. Zach has their T-shirt.” Quaid, having met the boy on a few occasions, wasn’t shocked by the information. “Here’s the deal. We need someone to infiltrate them.” Molly blinked twice. Durwood spoke up, “You’d be great, Moll. You’re young. Personable. People trust you.” Molly’s eyes were grapefruits. “What did you call them, ‘anarchist hackers’? How would I infiltrate them? I just started paying bills online.” “No tech knowledge required,” Quaid said. “We have a plan.” He gave her the nickel summary. The Blind Mice had singled out twelve corporate targets, “the Despicable Dozen,” and American Dynamics topped the list. In recent months, AmDye had seen its websites crashed, its factories slowed by computer glitches, internal documents leaked, the CEO’s home egged repeatedly. Government agencies from the FBI to NYPD were pursuing the Mice, but the company was troubled by the lack of progress and so had hired Third Chance Enterprises to take them down. “Now if I accept,” Molly said, narrowing her eyes, “does that mean I’m officially part of Third Chance Enterprises?” Quaid exhaled at length. Durwood shook his head with an irked air—he hated the name, and considered Quaid’s branding efforts foolish. “Oh, Durwood and I have been at this freelance operative thing awhile.” Quaid smoothed his sport coat lapels. “Most cases we can handle between the two of us.” “But not this one.” “Right. Durwood’s a whiz with prosthetics, but even he can’t bring this”—Quaid indicated his own ruggedly handsome but undeniably middle-aged face—“back to twenty-five.” Molly’s eyes turned inward. Quaid’s instincts told him she was thinking of her children. She said, “Sounds dangerous.” “Nah.” He spread his arms, wide and forthright. “You’re working with the best here: the top small-force, private-arms outfit in the Western world. Very minimal danger.” Like the politician he’d once been, Quaid delivered this line of questionable veracity with full sincerity. Then he turned to his partner. “Right, Wood? She won’t have a thing to worry about. We’d limit her involvement to safe situations.” Durwood thinned his lips. “Do the best we could.” This response, typical of the soldier he’d once been, was unhelpful. Molly said, “Who takes care of my kids if something happens, if the Blind Mice sniff me out? Would I have to commit actual crimes?” “Unlikely.” Unlikely? I’ll tell you what’s unlikely, getting hired someplace, anyplace, with a felony conviction on your application…” As she thundered away, Quaid wondered if Durwood might not have been right in preferring a pro. The few times they’d used Molly McGill before had been secondary: posing as a gate agent during the foiled Delta hijacking, later as an archivist for the American embassy in Rome. They’d only pulled her into Rome because of her language skills—she spoke six fluently. “…also, I have to say,” she continued, and from the edge in her voice, Quaid knew just where they were headed, “I find it curious that I don’t hear from you for ten months, and then you need my help, and all of a sudden, I matter. All of a sudden, you’re on my doorstep.” “I apologize,” Quaid said. “The Dubai job ran long, then that Guadeloupean resort got hit by a second hurricane. We got busy. I should’ve called.” Molly’s face cooled a shade, and Quaid saw that he hadn’t lost her. Yet. Before either could say more, a heavy ker-klack sounded outside. “What’s the racket?” Quaid asked. He peeked out the window at his and Durwood’s Vanagon, which looked no more beat-up than usual. “It’s been going on all morning,” Molly said. “I figured it was construction.” Quaid said, “Construction in this economy?” He looked to Durwood. “I’ll check ’er out.” The ex-soldier turned for the door. Sue-Ann, heaving herself laboriously off the carpet, scuffled after. Alone now with Molly, Quaid walked several paces in. He doubled his sport coat over his forearm and passed a hand through his hair, using a foyer mirror to confirm the curlicues that graced his temples on his best days. This was where it had to happen. Quaid’s behavior toward Molly had been less than gallant, and that was an issue. Still, there were sound arguments at his disposal. He could play the money angle. He could talk about making the world safer for Molly’s children. He could point out that she was meant for greater things, appealing to her sense of adventure, framing the job as an escape from the hamster wheel and entrée to a bright world of heroes and villains. He believed in the job. Now he just needed her to believe too. CHAPTER THREE Durwood walked north. Sue-Ann gimped along after, favoring her bum hip. Paws echoed bootheels like sparrows answering blackbirds. They found their noise at the sixth house on the left. A crew of three men was working outside a small home. Two-story like Molly’s. The owner had tacked an addition onto one side, prefab sunroom. The men were working where the sunroom met the main structure. Dislodging nails, jackhammering between fiberglass and brick. Tossing panels onto a stack. “Pardon,” Durwood called. “Who you boys working for?” One man pointed to his earmuffs. The others paid Durwood no mind whatsoever. Heavyset men. Big stomachs and muscles. Durwood walked closer. “Those corner boards’re getting beat up. Y’all got a permit I could see?” The three continued to ignore him. The addition was poorly done to begin with, the cornice already sagging. Shoddy craftsmanship. That didn’t mean the owners deserved to have it stolen for scrap. The jackhammer was plugged into an outside GFI. Durwood caught its cord with his bootheel. “The hell?” said the operator as his juice cut. Durwood said, “You’re thieves. You’re stealing fiberglass.” The men denied nothing. One said, “Call the cops. See if they come.” Sue-Ann bared her gums. Durwood said, “I don’t believe we need to involve law enforcement,” and turned back south for the Vanagon. Crime like this—callous, brash—was a sign of the times.  People were sore about this “new economy,” how well the rich were making out. Groups like the Blind Mice thought it gave them a right to practice lawlessness.   Lawlessness, Durwood knew, was like a plague. Left unchecked, it spread. Even now, besides this sunroom dismantling, Durwood saw a half dozen offenses in plain sight. Low-stakes gambling on a porch. Coaxials looped across half the neighborhood roofs: cable splicing. A Rottweiler roaming off leash. Each stuck in Durwood’s craw. He walked a half block to the Vanagon. He hunted around inside, boots clattering the bare metal floor. Pushed aside Stinger missiles in titanium casings. Squinted past crates of frag grenades in the bulkhead he’d jiggered himself from ponderosa pine. Here she was—a pressurized tin of black ops epoxy. Set quick enough to repel a flash air strike, strong enough to hold a bridge. Durwood had purchased it for the Dubai job. According to his supplier, Yakov, the stuff smelled like cinnamon when it dried. Something to do with chemistry. Durwood removed the tin from its box and brushed off the pink Styrofoam packing Yakov favored. Then allowed Sue a moment to ease herself down to the curb before they started back north. Passing Molly’s house, Durwood glimpsed her through the living room window. She was listening to Quaid, fingers pressed to her forehead. Quaid was lying. Which was nothing new, Quaid stretching the truth to a woman. But these lies involved Molly’s safety. Fact was, they knew very little of the Blind Mice. Their capabilities, their willingness to harm innocents. The leader, Josiah, was a reckless troublemaker. He spewed his nonsense on Twitter, announcing targets ahead of time, talking about his own penis. The heavyset men were back at it. One on the roof. The other two around back of the sunroom, digging up the slab. Durwood set down the epoxy. The men glanced over but kept jackhammering. They would not be the first, nor last, to underestimate this son of an Appalachian coal miner. The air compressor was set up on the lawn. Durwood found the main pressure valve and cranked its throat full open. The man on the roof had his ratchet come roaring out of his hands. He slid down the grade, nose rubbing vinyl shingles, and landed in petunias. Back on his feet, the man swore. “Mind your language,” Durwood said. “There’s families in the neighborhood.” The other two hustled over, shovels at their shoulders. The widest of the three circled to Durwood’s backside. Sue-Ann coiled her old bones to strike. Ugliness roiled Durwood’s gut. Big Man punched first. Durwood caught his fist, torqued his arm behind his back. The next man swung his shovel. Durwood charged underneath and speared his chest. The man wheezed sharply, his lung likely punctured. The third man got hold of Durwood’s bootheel, smashed his elbow into the hollow of Durwood’s knee. Durwood scissored the opposite leg across the man’s throat. He gritted his teeth and clenched. He felt the man’s Adam’s apple wriggling between his legs. A black core in Durwood yearned to squeeze. He resisted. The hostiles came again, and Durwood whipped them again. Automatically, in a series of beats as natural to him as chirping to a katydid. The men’s faces changed from angry to scared to incredulous. Finally, they stayed down. “Now y’all are helping fix that sunroom.” Durwood nodded to the epoxy tin. “Mix six to one, then paste ’er on quick.” Luckily, he’d caught the thieves early, and the repair was uncomplicated. Clamp, glue, drill. The epoxy should increase the R-value on the sunroom ten, fifteen, units. Good for a few bucks off the gas bill in winter, anyhow. Durwood did much of the work himself. He enjoyed the panels’ weight, the strength of a well-formed joint. His muscles felt free and easy as if he were home ridding the sorghum fields of johnsongrass. Done, he let the thieves go. He turned back south toward Molly’s house. Sue-Ann scrabbled alongside. “Well, ole girl?” he said. “Let’s see how Quaid made out.” CHAPTER FOUR I stood on my front porch watching the Vanagon rumble down Sycamore. My toes tingled, my heart was tossing itself against the walls of my chest, and I was pretty sure my nose had gone berserk. How else could I be smelling cinnamon? Quaid Rafferty’s last words played over and over in my head: We need you. For twenty minutes, after Durwood had taken his dog to investigate ker-klacks, Quaid had given me the hard sell. The money would be big-time. I had the perfect skills for the assignment: guts, grace under fire, that youthful je ne sais quoi. Wasn’t I always saying I ought to be putting my psychology skills to better use? Well, here it was: understanding these young people’s outrage would be a major component of the job. Some people will anticipate your words and mumble along. Quaid did something similar but with feelings, cringing at my credit issues, brightening with whole-face joy at Karen’s reading progress—which I was afraid would suffer if I got busy and didn’t keep up her nightly practice. He was pitching me, yes. But he genuinely cared what was happening in my life. I didn’t know how to think about Quaid, how to even fix him in my brain. He and Durwood were so far outside any normal frame of reference. Were they even real? Did I imagine them? Their biographies were epic. Quaid the twice-elected (once-impeached) governor of Massachusetts who now battled villains across the globe and lived at Caesars Palace. Durwood a legend of the Marine Corps, discharged after defying his commanding officer and wiping out an entire Qaeda cell to avenge the death of his wife. I’d met them during my own unreal adventure—the end of my second marriage, which had unraveled in tragedy in the backwoods of West Virginia. They’d recruited me for three missions since. Each was like a huge, brilliant dream—the kind that’s so vital and packed with life that you hang on after you wake up, clutching backward into sleep to stay inside. Granny said, “That man’s trouble. If you have any sense in that stubborn head of yours, you’ll steer clear.” I stepped back into the living room, the Vanagon long gone, and allowed my eyes to close. Granny didn’t know the half of it. She had huffed off to watch her judge shows on TV before the guys had even mentioned the Blind Mice. No, she meant a more conventional trouble. “I’ve learned,” I said. “If I take this job, it won’t be for romance. I’d be doing it for me. For the family.” As if cued by the word “family,” a peal of laughter sounded upstairs. Children! My eyes zoomed to the clock. It was 8:20. Zach would be lucky to make first hour, let alone homeroom. In a single swipe, I scooped up the Prius keys and both jackets. My purse whorled off my shoulder like some supermom prop. “Leaving now!” I called up the stairwell. “Here we go, kids—laces tied, backpacks zipped.” Zach trudged down, leaning his weight into the rail. Karen followed with sunny-careful steps. I sped through the last items on my list—tossed a towel over the grape juice, sloshed water onto the roast, considered my appearance in the microwave door, and just frowned, beyond caring. Halfway across the porch, Granny’s fingers closed around my wrist. “Promise me,” she said, “that you will not associate with Quaid Rafferty. Promise me you won’t have one single thing to do with that lowlife.” I looked past her to the kitchen, where the cat was kinking herself to retch Eggo Waffle onto the linoleum. “I’m sorry, Granny.” I patted her hand, freeing myself. “It’s something I have to do.” *** Excerpt from Anarchy of the Mice by Jeff Bond. Copyright 2020 by Jeff Bond. Reproduced with permission from Jeff Bond. All rights reserved.


Author Bio:

Jeff Bond Jeff Bond is an American author of popular fiction. His books have been featured in The New York Review of Books, and his 2020 release, The Pinebox Vendetta, received the gold medal (top prize) in the 2020 Independent Publisher Book Awards. A Kansas native and Yale graduate, he now lives in Michigan with his wife and two daughters.

Catch Up With Jeff Bond On: JeffBondBooks.com BookBub Goodreads Instagram Twitter Facebook!


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#Featured “The Hathor Legacy Series” by Deborah A. Bailey


Hathor Legacy: Outcast, Book 1


On the planet, Hathor, a powerful group called the Guardians serves as the security force for Novacorp, the corporation that runs Hathor with its ruthless monopoly. Nadira, as one of the most powerful Guardians, is expected to use her psychic and telekinetic powers to keep the capital city safe from thieves and intruders.

Jonathan Keel, son of a mine CEO on the nearby planet, Astarte, is wealthy, privileged and used to getting what he wants. When his father goes missing after a robbery and explosion at the mine, he defies the authorities and heads to Hathor to search for him and for the robbers.

Security is on high alert and Nadira is charged with protecting Jon. She rescues him from an vicious attack and discovers that the Guardians have another agenda that has nothing to do with solving the crime.

Jonathan finds evidence of his father’s possible involvement, while his attraction to Nadira forces her to confront all she has known about being a Guardian, especially the rule to put duty before her personal feelings.

Struggling with their growing desires, and chased by company security, Jon and Nadira flee the city. But solving the crime leads them to endure betrayals from the people closest to them, as secrets are revealed that not only link their pasts but also threaten to destroy Jon’s family and separate him from Nadira forever.

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Hathor Legacy: Burn, Book 2


On the planet, Hathor: A powerful corporation, a psychic security force & a conspiracy.

An old threat re-emerges that may permanently sever the already precarious alliance between Novacorp and the Guardians, the psychic security force the corporation has gone far and beyond to put completely under their own directive…
Sentry Leader and Elder Nadira is called to investigate a rash of fires throughout the city and uncovers the shocking truth about the Deshtu, another group with PSI powers like the Guardians, who’ve been purposely kept in the shadows. The Deshtu are being kidnapped for their abilities and forced into services far from basic skills like predicting the future and healing minor illnesses. The underground human trafficking of psychics she exposes is in direct violation of corporate rules.

But those horrors are just the tip of the iceberg: Nadira learns the brutal truth about the origin of the Guardians along with the Guardian Elders’ nefarious plans to make her abilities even more powerful. In the process, the psychic connection she shares with the man she loves, Jonathan Keel, will be terminated while another unwanted link is established in its place.

The final clash between the Guardians and Novacorp threatens to plunge the planet into utter chaos as Nadira risks everything to save herself and those she loves from the final, unforgivable betrayal.

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Hathor Legacy: Revelations, Book 3


With tensions reaching the breaking point between the Guardians and Novacorp, an enemy returns and the most powerful Guardian learns the truth about her parents that will not only destroy her loyalty to the security force she’s given her life to serving but also to the man she loves.

While Sentry Leader and Elder Nadira searches for answers, her lover Jonathan Keel is enticed into the hedonistic world of the Novacorp executive class. His entertainment club,Secrets, attracts the elite of Hathor, providing the kind of popularity he never imagined. But this notoriety comes with a soul-stealing price…

With the worlds the Guardians and Novacorp rule put on a collision course, only one can come out victorious while the other is enslaved. The only way to salvage the legacy of the First Families, the original settlers of Hathor, is by making the ultimate sacrifice. But is no choice better than a bad choice when the three PSI groups–the Guardians, the Deshtu, and the healing Kasema–either have to unite or risk being brought completely under Novacorp’s ruthlessly oppressive dominion?

With old scores to settle and long-hidden truths thrust into the spotlight, Nadira and Jonathan…and their love…may never be the same.

Book Three of the Hathor Legacy Series combining elements of suspense, science fiction, paranormal with BWWM multicultural romance.

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#AudioTour “Deep Roots (The Deep Series Bk 3)” by Nick Sullivan

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Author: Nick Sullivan

Narrator: Nick Sullivan

Length: 7 hours 11 minutes

Publisher: Wild Yonder Press⎮2018

Genre: Action-Adventure

Series: The Deep, Book 3

Release date: May 12, 2020

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Synopsis: In the mangroves of Belize, something ancient lies hidden beneath the roots. And when it surfaces, so too will one of man’s baser inclinations. The root of all evil: greed.

Boone Fischer and Emily Durand have enjoyed months of quiet on the tiny island of Caye Caulker. After surviving Hurricane Irma and a mountaintop madman, the two divemasters have finally begun to relax. Big mistake.

Following on the fins of the best-selling thrillers Deep Shadow and Deep Cut, this third Caribbean action-adventure thriller in The Deep Series takes the listener on a whirlwind tour of Belize. From the offshore cayes to distant lagoons, from tropical rivers to jungle ruins lost in time, Boone and Emily race to untangle themselves from a deadly plot that threatens to shatter their lives.


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Nick SullivanBorn in East Tennessee, NICK SULLIVAN has spent most of his adult life as an actor in New York City, working in theater, television, film, and audiobooks. After narrating hundreds of books over the last twenty years, he decided to write his own. Nick has been an avid scuba diver for many years and his travels to numerous Caribbean islands have inspired this series. His first novel, “Zombie Bigfoot”, hit #1 in Horror Comedy on Amazon.

NICK SULLIVAN has been narrating audiobooks for over twenty years, recording over four hundred titles and receiving numerous AudioFile Earphones and Audie nominations and awards. He has worked extensively on Broadway and at many U.S. theaters. His TV credits include The Good Wife, The Affair, Divorce, Younger, Bull, Madam Secretary, Boardwalk Empire, 30 Rock, Elementary, and all three Law and Order series. Film credits include Our Idiot Brother and Private Life. Proud member of SAG-AFTRA.



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Q & A with Author/Narrator Nick Sullivan

How did you wind up narrating audiobooks? Was it always your goal or was it something you stumbled into by chance?

It was a random stroke of luck. I was doing a film shoot and the woman playing my wife had been narrating for Talking Books in New York City. And just a few days before, I happened to have taken an ad from a bulletin board: the Jewish Braille Institute was looking for actors to narrate books for the blind for free. I called them… set up a time… then called Talking Books and let them know I had experience recording books (or would, by the time I showed up!)

A lot of narrators seem to have a background in theatre. Is that something you think is essential to a successful narration career?

I used to think so… but there are some truly excellent narrators who don’t have an acting background, so I stand corrected. In general, I DO think a person who has made their living as an actor is going to be better suited to delivering dialogue… but that doesn’t mean they will always be a better storyteller!

What type of training have you undergone?

I studied theater in undergrad and grad school and went to London to train at the British American Dramatic Academy. I had the good fortune to work with a number of teachers who specialized in dialects.

What are your favorite and least favorite parts of narrating an audiobook?

Favorite: high octane dialogue scenes where I can have a ball with the pacing and emotional content. Least favorite: Saying the word “sixths”.

What would you say are your strongest narration abilities?

I pride myself on dialogue and character distinction. I’m good with a number of accents and have a decent ear for picking up new ones. Not like P.J. Ochlan, though… his dialect work is off the charts!

Is there a particular genre you feel unsuited for? Have you ever declined a project because you didn’t think you were right for it?

I’m actually quite comfortable in all genres… and I’ve recorded titles across the board. I have turned jobs down where I disagreed in the choice to use a male narrator, when a book seemed better suited to a female voice. And I turned down a few books that were first-person narrative from Chicagoans and Bostonians… wasn’t comfortable laying on an accent that isn’t in my comfort zone for an entire book.

How does audiobook narration differ from other types of voiceover work you’ve done? Long form narration requires an entirely different skill-set.

The peaks and valleys in pacing and intensity are something you spread out over minutes or hours, instead of the short bursts you’ll find in commercials, animation, or video games.

Do you read reviews for your audiobooks? If so, which ones stand out to you most, positive or negative? What type of the review comments do you find most constructive?

Amusingly enough, I read a self-help book on mindfulness and meditation. It quoted a study that a negative event will carry about four times the weight as an equivalent positive event. Makes sense, in my experience. Yes, I read reviews. A lot of negative reviews are “trolly”, and most narrators know to dismiss those, but some will have some little nugget that you read and go “Oh… um… yeah. I see that.” For instance, I based my Emily character on an actual Brit I met and decided to pump her up to a full South London accent. Well, after reading some reviews from some Brits, I decided to pull her back a bit in Deep Cut. She’s still a bit more “street” than your usual Thames dialect, but I figured I might’ve picked an overly strong dialect for her.

Who is your “dream author” that you would like to record for?

I was fortunate enough to narrate an early version of Sick Puppy for Carl Hiaasen. I still consider it to be one of my favorite experiences of all time. I’d love to do another. His characters are so wonderfully “out there”, that there’s literally a feast of possibilities laid out before the narrator.

What bits of advice would you give to aspiring audiobook narrators?

Okay, here’s a freebie trick. Are you good at impressions? Yes? Well, then sorry, can’t help you. But if you’re like most folks, and you’ve got maybe one or two in you, but most of your impressions are terrible… great!! Because, if you want to craft a unique voice for a character… do an impression that you’re no good at, that doesn’t really sound like the famous person you are failing to impersonate. What you get instead is… a unique voice. One that you’ll be able to repeat over and over in the book… by simply firing up your miserable attempt at that impression.



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