Tuesday, January 31, 2017

XPresso Book Tours Presents: Celtic Fire by Liz Gavin


Celtic Fire
Liz Gavin
(Highland Celts Series, #1)
Publication date: January 31st 2017
Genres: Adult, Historical, Paranormal Romance
This is a standalone, historical/paranormal romance. Its mature themes – violence, religious war, and pagan rituals – might not be appropriate for audiences under 18.
When ancient gods ruled and Druids kept Faith alive, the Celts thrived as a democratic, matriarchal society. Then savage Roman soldiers swept across Europe, killing and enslaving. The Celts did not succumb without a fight. Their Old Ways survived centuries of ruthless domain until another menace loomed: a tortured god worshiped in cold stone buildings. The sacred shores of Avalon began to drift away, the mists threatened to hide the island from mortal eyes forever.
Against the bleak backdrop of war, the gorgeous Scottish Highlands stood tall, sheltering its inhabitants from greedy invaders. Yet the reach of the eagle banners was long and the highlanders turned to the Goddess for protection. However, the sacred groves felt silent and grim as Avalon faded away. Once sad, pealing bells began to sound strangely comforting while the high walls of monasteries offered an alluring barrier from violence. Caught in the middle of this centuries-old war, a young High Priestess might be Avalon’s last chance.
Wise beyond her years and powerful like no other Priestess in her lifetime, Rowen had served the Goddess faithfully, forsaking her family and the company of her soulmate. When the Lady of the Lake asks for another sacrifice, it might be one too many for her scarred heart. How could she obey the Goddess without betraying Caddaric? Could she trust Eochaid, who embodied everything she despised and hated? Would she be able to fulfill her duties without losing her soul?
Caddaric had been Rowen’s companion in countless lives; but, now, they existed in different realms. Beautiful Rowen lived in the mortal world while sweet Caddaric remained in the sacred isle of Avalon, watching over her. Could he step aside to allow another man – a flesh and blood man – to become her protector?
Eochaid had sworn to protect the Old Ways. The rude warrior never quite understood his faith yet his loyal heart belonged to the Goddess. A gorgeous, fiery High Priestess was not in his plans. He would risk his life to protect Rowen; but, would the Goddess safeguard his heart? Could he defend the bewitching maiden from himself?
When stakes were so high that a simple mistake could cost their very world, a priestess, a Druid, and a warrior must learn to trust each other and the mysterious ways of the Goddess. Their success would save Avalon. Their failure would tear the island from the human realm forever, condemning it to oblivion.
Failure was not an option.
EXCERPT:
Rowen
Although my heart is heavy and my thoughts are gloomy, I take a deep breath and focus on the task at hand. I search for the sacred oak, the oldest tree in the grove. Finding it, I lie on the ground, face down, in front of the revered tree. Earth’s energy radiates from the ground, traveling through my body and limbs, filling me with a potent magnetism, and making my skin tingle as I say my prayer.
“Forgive me, Great Mother. I have failed you yet again. I am your vessel on this realm and as such I should never doubt your ways. Nevertheless, when the time came for Caddaric to go back to Avalon, I despaired and fought against the inevitable, as I always do.
Please, give me strength to control my weak heart, wisdom to understand your signs, and courage to do your bidding.”
The wind picks up around me making the dry leaves and little twigs swirl. Faint whispers come in the breeze. A thousand gentle fingers move over my body caressing, soothing me.
“Oh, Mother, you are too kind and never abandon me. I promise to serve you faithfully and perform my duties accordingly from now on.”
The wind blows stronger, molding my clothes to my body, covering me in dry leaves. I feel faint and when I open my eyes, I’m not in the sacred grove any longer. I’m lying on a sunny field, there’s a gentle breeze blowing from the distant line of apple trees, bringing the sweet smell of their flowers in full bloom. Recognizing my beloved isle of Avalon, I get up and look around. I see the Lady of the Lake standing just a few feet away. I go to her and offer a curtsy. The Lady gently holds me by my shoulders, smiles serenely and holds my gaze. Not for the first time, I wonder if her eyes can read my soul.
“Rise, Rowen, my child. And do not cry. You should rejoice over your successes instead of mourning what you perceive as failures. Your apprentices look up to you and seek your guidance, because your advice is wise and respectful. The villagers worship the Great Mother according to the old traditions, because they follow your firm yet kind leadership. Despite being so young, my beautiful Rowen, you are wise and your people respect you.”
I am touched by her words. I never expected the Lady of the Lake herself would answer my prayer and come talk to me, comfort me.
“You are too kind, my lady. I am honored and, although I think I do not deserve your comfort, I am thankful.”
“I speak only the truth, Rowen, as all true servants of the Goddess shall do. Now, you will not like what I need to tell you. You have always been loyal to your vows and I count on that loyalty to see you through the task I need you to undertake.”
“You frighten me, my lady. What do you need from me? You know I would never deny you, or the Great Mother, anything.”


Author Bio:
International best-selling author Liz Gavin, has accomplished much in her short career. Her books have made to #1 and Top Five best-selling ranks in her home country Brazil and others as diverse as Japan, the UK and the US; both in English and Portuguese, collecting 5 and 4-star reviews. Nominated for a Summer Indie Book Award in 2016, and again in 2017, this RWA member constantly seeks new opportunities to improve her craft.
This thirst for knowledge propelled Liz to leave the comforts of family and friends in Brazil and move to California to pursue a Master’s degree in late 2015. She lives in sunny SoCal, where she’s researching the writing process, for her thesis, in hopes to figure out why she creates in English instead of her native Portuguese.
Liz Gavin writes in contemporary, paranormal, and historical genres. In her sexy stories, one finds smart, independent women, who don’t need rescuing by knights in shining armor, but indulge in steamy action with swoony Alpha males with big hearts. She also writes about women discovering their sexuality and finding happiness in unconventional setups.

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Sunday, January 22, 2017

XPresso Book Tours Presents: Scorch Road


Scorch Road
Toby Neal & Emily Kimelman
(Scorch Series, #1)
Publication date: January 2017
Genres: Adult, Romance, Thriller
For fans of romance thriller suspense and family romance series, comes a new romantic action adventure!
One of five brothers and a sister, JT Luciano is a widowed environmental biologist with a touch of the Sight who is preparing for an apocalyptic event he knows is coming. Holed up at his military survival camp named the Haven, prepared for his family, JT is ready for whatever might come… except for one woman.
Elizabeth Johnson, virologist and Senator’s daughter, is carrying precious cells for a vaccine against the swiftly-evolving, deadly flu that’s sweeping the nation. Her plane crashes in JT’s potato field—and she must convince him to leave his safe haven and help her get to Washington, DC.
One by one, the structures of society implode in the face of the flu’s devastation as JT and Elizabeth travel a scorching road cross country. Danger brings them together to find one good, true thing in a changing world.
Help Pick The Cover Design for the first book in the new “Scorch Romantic Thriller Series” by bestselling authors Toby Neal and Emily Kimelman!
From Toby & Emily:
We are dying to hear your thoughts! We love both these covers but want to know what YOU think. Which one just screams “Romantic Thriller”?
To show our gratitude for sharing your opinion with us we are offering everyone who votes a free copy of the first book in this smoking hot new series, “Scorch Road.”
We can’t wait to see what you think!


Author Bio:
Kirkus Reviews calls Neal's writing, "persistently riveting. Masterly."
Award-winning, USA Today bestselling social worker turned author Toby Neal grew up on the island of Kaua`i in Hawaii. Neal is a mental health therapist, a career that has informed the depth and complexity of the characters in her stories. Neal's police procedurals, starring multicultural detective Lei Texeira, explore the crimes and issues of Hawaii, and are so popular that they've spawned a licensed fan fiction world on Amazon.
Neal focuses on mystery but also writes romance, YA, and memoir.
Receive one of her books, full-length, award-winning Torch Ginger, by signing up for her email list at http://tobyneal.net/
Author links:
Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter
--
Emily Kimelman is the author of eight mysteries in her best selling Sydney Rye Series about a brave female protagonist and her giant dog, Blue. Emily also writes dystopian, paranormal romances under the name E.J. Kimelman. A traveler, mother and all around bad ass chick, Emily is always happy to hear from readers. Connect with her on Twitter @ejkimelman, Facebook, and at her website www.emilykimelman.com. Visit Emily’s website and sign up for her Readers’ Group to receive four FREE ebooks including the first book in her Sydney Rye Series, UNLEASHED. You’ll also get special offers, new release announcements and more.
Author links:
Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

XPresso Book Tour Presents: Sonora and the Eye of the Titans by TS Hall


Sonora and the Eye of the Titans
T.S. Hall
Publication date: January 14th 2017
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
The King is dead, and the capital city of Titanis has fallen. The world of Sonora is at war, and the only hope against the onslaught of the Titan army lies with the last royal decedent of Zeus, who is being covertly sheltered on Earth in the secluded mountain town of Sandy, Oregon.
Allora is a shy, intelligent sixteen-year-old, trying to get through the gauntlet of high school while coming to terms with her otherworldly origins. After getting into a fight at soccer tryouts, Allora’s emotions boil over, and her hands suddenly burst into flames. She has harnessed the power of hadrons at the highest level, but at extreme cost. The magical outburst projects an energy signature that is detected by a group of assassins tasked with killing Sonoran rebels.
To survive, Allora, Katie, Dax, and Tanner must find a powerful ancient artifact known as the Eye of the Titans. With the help of a guardian known as Sasquatch, they will have to fight off creatures, solve complex riddles, and navigate magical caverns, all while enduring advanced calculus, jealous girlfriends, and prom.


Author Bio:
I'm a writer, skier, and wanderer. I grew up in Portland, Oregon, but currently live in the beautiful mountain resort town of Sun Valley, Idaho. I love history, mythology, and the fantastical interpretations that have been incorporated in my debut young adult urban fantasy series called Sonora.



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Monday, January 16, 2017

XPresso Book Tours Presents: Fated Destinations: A Romance Collection


Fated Destinations
(Crimson Tree Publishing)
Publication date: December 27th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Paranormal, Romance, Science Fiction
FATED DESTINATIONS: A Contemporary, Paranormal, and Science Fiction Romance Boxed Set
Escape from the everyday with this set of 7 all-new travel-based romances from award-winning authors. These exciting stories span the globe (and beyond!) to spin tales of love and intrigue in exotic locations. Take a mental vacation today with the Fated Destinations box set.
A Royal Problem by Julie Wetzel
Jessie is tasked with saving a set of jewels from pirates that attack her cruise ship. She jumps overboard and swims for shore, knowing only that she must find Lord Marcus at the majestic castle in Ospioria…
Mandatory Vacation by Kelly Risser
When workaholic Natalie Olsen is forced to take a vacation by her new boss, she books a cabana at the private island resort of Hibiscus Cay. But instead of relaxing, she finds herself intrigued by the handsome resort manager who seems to be hiding something…
Guide Me Gently by Peggy Martinez
Alyssa Monroe always dreamed of escaping to exotic locales as a photographer, so she’s thrilled as she sets off for Dasia Island. But only one guide is willing to take her deep into a forbidden forest… a sexy, tattooed local who sets her blood on fire and gets her camera finger itching.
Hawaiian Sunrise by Melissa J. Cunningham
Betrayed just before her wedding day, brokenhearted Jamie rents a bungalow on the beautiful island of Maui. Will the tour guide who shows her the island also be able to show her how to trust again?
Jessie’s Girl by Susan Harris
After she lost her mother to cancer, Maxine Fox threw herself into drugs, drink, and partying to cope with the loss. When she is expelled from her third school, her father decides to send her to a catholic private school in Ireland. But tattooed bisexual Max is probably not going to fit in easily…
Prisms by Kendra Saunders
The invitation was to a diplomatic peace ceremony on the desert planet of Quassdar. But Quassdar is also known for its steamy sex magick rituals, and it seems like Griffin may have gotten things a little bit mixed up…
Ashes Overboard by Sandy Goldsworthy
For graduation, Aubrey Sheppard’s fiancĂ© gave her a dream Caribbean Cruise vacation. The only problem is, their relationship ended before the ship ever set sail. Now Aubrey—an inexperienced traveler—sets out alone, nervous and unsure. A shared cab ride introduces her to someone new, who’s also trying to move on with his life…


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Sunday, January 15, 2017

Movie Review: Hidden Figures


Hidden Figures is a true story about three remarkable African American women who overcame great obstacles at NASA during the early 1960s.  Octavia Spencer plays Dorothy Vaughn who manages the 'colored' workers at the Virginia NASA base.  She doesn't get paid the wages of a manager nor wears the title, but steps in for the old manager when needed.  She finds away to gain the success she wants once the IBM main frame is installed.  Janelle Monae plays Mary Jackson who works as an assistant for the engineers.  She is encouraged to get her engineering degree, but once she applies, more necessary prerequisite classes are needed for the program.  She gets a court order to attend night school at a segregated  school to pursue her dream of becoming an engineer.  The star of this movie, Taraji Henson, plays Katherine Goble-Johnson, a mathematician who figures out a way for John Glenn to orbit space and then safely come back to earth.
My Review:  I thought this would be a movie about the early space program, and it was, but it was also a movie about overcoming obstacles.  As we all should know, women and blacks had very little opportunities in the workplace circa 1960.  Women were expected to stay home and raise children. Blacks were still subject to racist Jim Crow laws.  Despite the conventions of that era, these three women who all had small children and husbands still rose to the top.  One of the things I loved about this movie were the characters.  They all had every reason to feel resentful, defeated, and helpless.  However, instead of whining and bitching, they kept trying to look for opportunities to shine.  Eventually they earned their place at NASA along with earning a place in history.  I admired all three of them tremendously.  The acting was superb as was the story.  I thought that Janelle Monae was gorgeous and predict that she will become the next Halle Berry.  Kevin Costner was also great at the boss who didn't give a rats about someone's gender or skin color.  All he cared about was hiring the best and the brightest in order to get the job done.  I found it entertaining, motivational, and even important.  There was definitely a message-work hard, never give up, and earn your success instead of feeling that it is owed.  Loved this movie and recommend it to anyone.  5/5 Stars


Saturday, January 14, 2017

Short Story Review: A Day Away: Kate and Nate by GE Belle

https://www.amazon.com/Day-Away-Kate-Adult-Fantasy-ebook/dp/B01MR06QZS/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1484421046&sr=1-1&keywords=a+day+away

A Day Away is a short story about two friends who spend the day together and decide to take their relationship up to the next level.  Kate picks a secluded beach for their day and packs a delicious basket for lunch.  After they eat, she flirts with Nate and has him rub oil all over her body.  The story is told from his perspective.  He is not sure if she wants to remain friends or get romantic.  As the day progresses, they go swimming in the beach.  Let's just say they get together.  This book is a series and I read the first installment.  It was well written, erotic, and entertaining.  I liked the characters and want to know more about them.  Overall, I would give this short a 5/5 star rating for romance lovers.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

X-Presso Book Tours Presents: Blue Tide by Jenna-Lynne Duncan


Blue Tide
Jenna-Lynne Duncan
Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication date: January 9th 2017
Genres: Adventure, Dystopian, Young Adult
An award-winning YA adventure-packed romance steeped in Middle Eastern culture and set in the Asian Pacific amongst dangerous oceans and tropical islands.
Seventeen-year-old refugee Lux plots her escape from the island where her family is stranded, denying that her home was lost in the Floods. Lux is determined to get her old life back by any means possible. But before her feet even leave the sand, she’s taken hostage by a vengeance-driven pirate nearly as young as she is.
Her capture is the key to his freedom…
Captain Draven’s scarf veils more than his face. Underneath, he struggles between morality and survival. When Lux sees deeper into his motivations, she’s torn. She can commit mutiny to escape to a home that may no longer exist, or she can try to help Draven escape the clutches of the person responsible for the deaths of half the world. Staying would mean entrusting her life to a pirate. Helping Draven would mean losing her heart to one.
EXCERPT:
“You will help him, if it’s the last thing you do.”
He had to be bluffing. Lifting my chin, I met his icy gaze straight on. “You can threaten my life, but there is nothing more you can take from me that you haven’t already.”
“Oh, really?”
He stepped forward, towering over me. Wow, he was tall. I resisted every instinct to cower or curl into a small ball. His hand shot out so quickly, I hardly felt the pull around my neck. My hands flew to my chest. My necklace!
The captain held up the chain, his eyes wide with victory. It was clear he was waiting for a reaction, but, except for that first jolt of surprise, I was paralyzed.
Everything fell silent except the slap of waves against the hull and the drum of his boots as he walked to the railing. I clutched my arms to my chest. My heart sped up so fast I couldn’t tell if it was still beating. He held his hand over the side of the ship. The back of my throat ached with a pain so great I thought it would tear out.
“Stop!” One hand still clutched my chest, the other reached out toward the necklace.
“Still think I have nothing I can take from you? There is always something, Princess.”
Desperation replaced all courage. “Please stop. I can help him.”
He shrugged.
“Wait!”
He opened his palm, one finger at a time. The gold chain slid down, dipping closer to the waters below.
“Please, I’ll do anything!” I pressed my fists to the sides of my head.
He drew his fingers in, closing them around the chain. The necklace dangled safely.
I dropped my arms in relief. “Thank—”
With one slow, deliberate move, he opened his palm.
The chain slipped through his fingers.
“No,” I cried, running to the railing. My necklace had disappeared into the roaring waters below. Lost forever.
I choked on the air I strove to inhale. “That was… that was the only thing…” The sound of my heartbeat thrashed in my ears before every emotion was washed away. Every muscle in my body tightened and my eyes twitched as they narrowed. I turned mechanically to face the heartless brute. My face expressionless, my feelings numbed. He would pay for what he’d done.
“You are in no position to negotiate. Make no more requests or the next thing I drop in the water will be prisoners. One. By. One.” He dictated to me without one ounce of regret for what he’d just done. Turning just as easily, he shouted orders behind him. “Ahmed, bring her.”


Author Bio:
Jenna-Lynne Duncan likes to write heart-stopping, page-turning, haunting romance in all YA genres. Her current Young Adult releases are titled Hurricane, Tempest, and Aftermath (Divertir Publishing) and the forthcoming BLUE TIDE (Winter, 2017). Jenna graduated with degrees in Middle Eastern Studies, Political Science, and International Studies. BLUE TIDE was the recent winner of RWA’s Romancing the Lake contest. Besides writing, she loves traveling and children. Preferably together. She welcomes readers to contact her on social media or at JennaLynneDuncan@gmail.com.

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Sunday, January 8, 2017

Book Review: The Atlantis Plague

The Atlantis Plague is the second book of the Atlantis Gene trilogy by A.G. Riddle.  The sequel has most of the characters from the first book.  Doctor Kate Warner is trying to stop a world plague, but soon learns that there is more to it while studying autistic children in Spain.  Her stepfather, Martin, seems secretive about a cure for the world plague, but he has his reasons.  David Vale is trapped on an alien ship in Antarctica.  Dorian kills him several times, but someone keeps resurrecting him.  Eventually our heroes join forces with an alien and figure out a way to save mankind through a time machine and genetic mutations.
My Review: I loved the first book, The Atlantis Gene.  This book is not as good.  I like the research the author uses.  He has a lot of original ideas on plague, alien interference with our humanity, and time travel.  The general story is fascinating.  
My biggest criticism is mainly with the pacing of the story.  For me, it moves way to quickly, leaving me confused half of the time. There are so many action scenes which added to my to my confusion.  Overall, too fast of a ride.  3/5 Stars


Friday, January 6, 2017

Goddess Fish Presents: Food Junkies by Tarman and Werdell

Food Junkies
by Vera Tarman & Phil Werdell
Read by Lisa Bunting

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GENRE: Non-Fiction, self-help

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BLURB:

Is it possible to be addicted to food? When does indulging in 'comfort' food become substance abuse? Is it possible that there is more than a lack of will power at work when someone can't stop eating? In Food Junkies, Vera Tarman and Phil Werdell explain what is - and isn't - food addiction, tackling this complex and poorly understood problem through the stories of many survivors and from the perspectives of medical researchers/practitioners. They break down the science behind the research so that anyone can understand it, and take a fresh look at obesity, overeating, binge eating, anorexia and bulimia. For people struggling with these issues — and their families — recognizing the condition is the first step to gaining the kind of support and advice they need.

Food Junkies (finalist in the 2016 Voice Arts Awards) offers hope and guidance. Read by Lisa Bunting, according to one audible customer review, her "calming voice assists with decreasing the shame so often found with addiction and can open the listener up to actually hearing," while another noted the audiobook version "brought the science to life in a different way than the book. It made it even more real as one can't 'skim' or 'rush' through the life-changing content."


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EXCERPT:

Excerpt One:






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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Vera Tarman is a medical practitioner who focuses on addictions. She is the medical director of Renascent, an addictions treatment centre. Dr. Tarman conducts workshops and speaking engagements on the science of food addiction and "comfort food" abuse. She has reached audiences across the world. She lives in Toronto.

Phil Werdell is a recovering food addict, a social work clinician, and an educator. He is the primary organizer of the Food Addiction Institute and the International Society of Food Addiction Professionals, and is Director of ACORN’s Professional Training Program. Phil currently teaches Addictions Studies at Springfield College, School of Human Services, Tampa. He lives in Florida.

NARRATORS BIO:

Lisa Bunting is a stage, screen and voice actor, drama instructor, audition coach, and professional skills development simulator.  For Post Hypnotic Press, she has narrated the non-fiction self-help titles The Woman Who Changed Her Brain, The Remarriage Blueprint, Voice Arts Awards-nominated Food Junkies and the forthcoming i-Minds. She was named Best Supporting Actress at LA’s Focus International Film Festival, Winter 2015. She is a member of Canadian Actors’ Equity and ACTRA.

SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS:


BOOK:
http://addictionsunplugged.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Addictions-Unplugged-115629771844679/
https://twitter.com/FoodJunkiesBook

Vera Tarman:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/925163.Vera_Tarman

Phil Werdell:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8591529.Phillip_Werdell

Lisa Bunting:

https://twitter.com/foodaddictman

Post Hypnotic Press:
http://www.posthypnoticpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/PostHypnoticPress
http://www.twitter.com/Post_Hypnotic

Buy links for the books:


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One randomly chosen winner via rafflecopter will win a $50 Amazon/BN.com gift card.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Goddess Fish Presents: Debra Holt Books by Debra Holt

Debra Holt Books by Debra Holt ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ GENRE : Contemporary Romance ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ BLURB: Mercy’s Rescue   ...