Book Blitz: Ninja Girl


 

 

 

Ninja Girl
by Cookie O’Gorman
Genre: YA Contemporary Romance
Release Date: March 30th 3017

 

 


 

Summary from Goodreads:

Seventeen-year-old Snow-Soon Lee kicks ass–literally. She teaches at her family-owned martial arts gym, The Academy, and cares more about training to be the next Bruce Lee than hooking up. In fact, Snow’s never even been kissed. But when Girls Night rolls around, Snow decides to prove to her friends (and herself) that she’s not just some boring tomboy. Impulsively, she kisses a hot stranger and even manages to escape his two security guards.

One stolen kiss…

Ash Stryker’s senior year sucks. His politician father pulled him out of Chariot High, separating him from his championship-winning soccer team. Now he’s stuck at a prissy private school with no friends, no team and no chance of being scouted. On top of that, thanks to the death threats his dad’s received, Ash has a security tail aka professional babysitters. When the mystery girl from the movies shows up at his school, rappelling from the rafters, Ash knows one thing: he won’t let her get away again.

One interesting job proposition…

After a seemingly random attack, Ash’s mother surprises everyone. She hires Snow to be Ash’s personal bodyguard until after the election. But can Snow’s kick-ass skills hold up against the rising threats to Ash’s family? More importantly, can Ash convince his ninja girl to screw ethics and kiss him again?

Opposites attract in this YA romance where a smooth talker meets his match in the tough girl who (literally) sweeps him off his feet. Moral of the story:

Sometimes even bad boys need a bodyguard.



ON SALE FOR ONLY $0.99 UNTIL JUNE 19TH!

Buy Link: Amazon  

 


Excerpt
I stood up suddenly, needing to do…something. I knew what she was saying was total crap. I knew Nara was pure evil, and I didn’t have to prove anything to her. But right then I needed to prove something to myself. I was a girl dammit, and I wasn’t boring. I was a force.
Just like Bruce.
“Snow, what’s up?” Min asked, but instead of answering I headed in the opposite direction. While the others had been taking stock of hoodie guy, I’d been getting a read on his security. They were too far back to stop me. Part of me wanted to test them—to test me—and see if I could do this and still get away. I figured I had about a minute tops, but that’s all I’d need.
One last look over my shoulder told me all three girls were staring at me, mouths gaping, even Nara. Boring, she’d said earlier. I’d give her boring.
Taking a deep breath, I kept walking until I was almost even with hoodie guy’s seat, placed my hand on the chair back and swung my body over—right into his lap. Over his shoulder, I saw his security react. Too late.
He gasped, but I didn’t have time to explain.
“Sorry about this,” I whispered right before sealing my lips to his.
I’d taken him by surprise—that much was clear from the way his body tensed beneath mine. But he wasn’t trying to push me off. I’d intended it to be quick. A single brush with danger, a nod to teen girl impulsiveness, but the way his mouth melted under mine was unexpected. I fisted my hands in his shirt, pulling him closer. My lips, my entire body, went up in flames, but I couldn’t get close enough. It wasn’t until his hands came around my back that I remembered myself.
Pulling away, I came face-to-face with the greenest eyes I’d ever seen.
“I’m sorry,” I muttered again.
“I’m not,” he said.

 And then his guards grabbed me.


 

About the Author

 
Cookie O’Gorman writes YA romance to give readers a taste of happily-ever-after. Small towns, quirky characters, and the awkward yet beautiful moments in life make up her books. Cookie also has a soft spot for nerds and ninjas. Her debut novel ADORKABLE is out now!

Author Links:
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NINJA GIRL Book Playlist

“Ho Hey” by The Lumineers
“I Am the Best” by 2NE1
“Sparks Fly” by Taylor Swift
“Fans” by Kings of Leon
“My Chick Bad” by Ludacris & Nicki Minaj
“In For The Kill” (Skrillex Remix) by La Roux
“Lies” by BIGBANG
“Someone Like You” by Adele
“Miss Atomic Bomb” by The Killers
“Crazy” by Patsy Cline
“I Fall to Pieces” by Patsy Cline
“Call Your Girlfriend” (live) by Lennon and Maisy Stella
“Marry You” by Bruno Mars
“Come By Fire” by Sara Jackson-Holman
“Little Bit” by Lykke Li
“Emmylou” by First Aid Kit
 

GIVEAWAY:


Excerpt

“You’re kidding me, right?” Snow gestured to where Sadie was sitting in the bleachers. She had her camera out, ready to record. “Tall, beautiful, skin the color of cream. She’s basically a curvy dead ringer for Taylor Swift. Or hadn’t you noticed?”

“Sadie’s like my little sister,” I shrugged. “I could never see her that way. Plus, she’s annoying as hell. Definitely not my type.”

“Yeah, right,” she said. “And what might that be?”

“I like smart girls who can kick my ass.”

The bright flush on her cheeks told me she got my meaning. Loud and clear.

I grinned. “Know anyone like that, Snow?”

Instead of answering, she said, “Want to help me with something?”

“Anything,” I said.

She nodded and called the rest of the self-defense kids over. “Alright, guys, today I’m going to teach you how to take an assailant down. This is an important lesson. In case you can’t get away, you should know how to inflict the most damage. Ash has volunteered to be my assistant for this class.” Turning to me, she said, “Ready?”

“Sure,” I said. “What do I need to do?”

“Nothing.” There was an odd gleam in her eyes. “Just keep getting back up.”

“Okay.” She shook her head, a slow smile forming on her lips. “What?” I asked.

“It’s a good thing you like girls who can kick your ass,” she replied.

And then I was flying through the air.

After about the tenth flip, I lost track of how many times my back hit the mat. Sadie laughed the whole time, recording as Snow proceeded to smack me around. The hour seemed to drag on forever. But by the end of it, even though my body was sore, and I felt like shit, I couldn’t help but smile.

“Class dismissed,” Snow said, staring down at me, hands on hips. Her face glowed with perspiration, a line between her brows. “And what are you so happy about?”

“Thought you said you weren’t jealous,” I said back.

“I’m not,” she said, but we both knew she was lying. The way she growled and stomped off just made it that much more obvious.

And that meant I still had a shot. My smile widened.


Excerpt

The song suddenly changed from fast to slow, and she looked around at the other couples who were latching onto each other. The blush was back on her cheeks as she met my eyes.

“What now?” she asked.

If it was possible, the question made me like her even more. Taking her hands, I placed them around my neck and brought my own to her waist. The song gave me an excuse to get close, so I did. Snow was so much smaller than me. I felt like a giant, looking down at her.

“You really thought my song was sappy?” I asked.

“No,” she said. “I liked it.”

“Liked?”

“Hmm.”

“Not loved?”

A pause. “Maybe a little.”

I grinned. “I can handle that.”

She bit her lip to stop herself from smiling, which did strange things to me. Something in my chest leaped; my grip on her waist tightened. It also reminded me that I was still 0-2 on the kissing front. My eyes lingered on her lips.

“Stop it,” she hissed.

“Stop what?” I asked.

“You know what.”

“But I want to kiss you.” I dropped my voice. “God, I want to kiss you, Snow.”

She swallowed. “You can’t. It’s unethical.”

“Screw ethics.”

“Ash, we can’t. You’re my client,” she said as if it should matter. Right now, her being my bodyguard was the last thing on my mind. My thoughts were fully occupied with trying to remember if her lips were as soft as they looked.

I stared into her eyes, watching for the truth. “Don’t you want me to kiss you?”

“That doesn’t matter,” she said, looking down.

“It does,” I said, tilting her face back up. “And you do.”

It was in the way her eyes kept moving back to my lips. It was in the way her pulse jumped as my fingers trailed down her neck. Leaning into her was the only thing I could do. The only thing I wanted to do. I pressed a light kiss to the corner of her mouth.

Book Blitz: All the Stars Left Behind

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About the Book:

All the Stars Left Behind by Ashley Graham

Published by Entangled Teen

Release Day: June 6, 2017

Relocating to Arctic Norway would put a freeze on anyone’s social life. For Leda Lindgren, with her crutches and a chip on her shoulder the size of her former Manhattan home, the frozen tundra is just as boring as it sounds. Until she meets her uncle’s gorgeous employee.

Unfortunately, no matter how smoking hot the guy is, Roar comes with secrets as unnerving as his moving tattoos. And Leda doesn’t trust him.

Roar shouldn’t be drawn to the moody human girl with eyes that leave him weak in the knees. But when Leda gets shot by one of his enemies and survives, Roar finally understands why he’s drawn to her: Leda is exactly what he was sent to Earth to find. A weapon of immense power capable of saving his planet.

She just doesn’t know it yet.

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Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31450972-all-the-stars-left-behind

Amazon.com: https://www.amazon.com/Stars-Left-Behind-Ashley-Graham-ebook/dp/B01MXKOP1K/

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/all-the-stars-left-behind-ashley-graham/1124362957?ean=9781633756847

Kobohttps://www.kobo.com/ca/en/ebook/all-the-stars-left-behind 

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Stars-Left-Behind-Ashley-Graham-ebook/dp/B01MXKOP1K/

Amazon CA: https://www.amazon.ca/Stars-Left-Behind-Ashley-Graham-ebook/dp/B01MXKOP1K/


About the Author:

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Ashley Graham was born in Ontario, Canada, and has since lived in five countries. Before writing her first manuscript in 2015, she worked as a clerical assistant, quality assurance officer, chef, and stay-at-home mom/homeschool teacher. When she isn’t writing or reading every book she gets her hands on, Ashley enjoys online window shopping, Netflix binges, and spends way too much time thinking about space travel. ALL THE STARS LEFT BEHIND is her debut novel.
Author on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15983484.Ashley_Graham

Author on Twitter: https://twitter.com/writer_ag

Author on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ashleygrahamya/

Author Website: http://ashleygrahamya.blogspot.ca/

Book Blitz: Splinters

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Splinters (The Prospero Chronicles #1)
by F.J.R. Titchenell & Matt Carter
Genre: YA Horror/Scifi
Release Date: June 6th 2017

Summary from Goodreads:

Under normal circumstances, Ben and Mina would never have had reason to speak to each other. He’s an easy-going people person with a healthy skepticism about the paranormal; she’s a dangerously obsessive monster-hunter with a crippling fear of betrayal. But the small Northern California town of Prospero, with its rich history of cryptid sightings, miracles, and mysterious disappearances, has no normal circumstances to offer.

When Ben’s missing childhood friend, Haley Perkins, stumbles out of Prospero’s surrounding woods and right into her own funeral, Ben and Mina are forced to work together to uncover what happened to her. Different as they are, their unlikely friendship may be the only thing that can save the town, and possibly the world, from its insidious invaders.

Add to Goodreads

Advance Praise:

“A snapping, crackling, popping homage to classic horror.” —Kirkus Reviews.

“Whip-smart dialogue… genuinely terrifying Splinters, the descriptions of which will have fans of monster films utterly enthralled… A promising series opener, this will satisfy those readers who like their scary stories to be as clever as they are chilling.” —KQG, the Bulletin of The Center for Children’s Books.

“The stakes are high. The action is intense.” —Washington Independent Review of Books.

Splinters blitz banner.jpg

The Splinters ebook is on sale for only $0.99 now through July 6th!

Buy Links:

Createspace | Amazon (Paperback) | Amazon (Kindle) | Barnes & Noble (Paperback) | Barnes & Noble (Nook) | iBooks | Kobo | Google Play | Smashwords | Indigo | Books-a-Million | Indiebound


About the Authors

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F.J.R. TITCHENELL is an author of young adult, sci-fi, and horror fiction, including Confessions of the Very First Zombie Slayer (That I Know of). She graduated from Cal State University Los Angeles with a B. A. in English in 2009 at the age of twenty. She currently lives in San Gabriel, California, with her husband, coauthor, and amazing partner in all things, Matt Carter, and their pet king snake, Mica.

Connect with F.J.R. Titchenell on:

Her blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest

MATT CARTER is an author of horror, sci-fi, and yes, even a little bit of young adult fiction. He earned his degree in history from Cal State University Los Angeles, and lives in the usually sunny town of San Gabriel, California, with his wife, best friend, and awesome co-writer, F.J.R. Titchenell. Check out his first solo novel, Almost Infamous, or connect with him on:

His blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads


GIVEAWAY:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Book Blitz Organized by:

YA Bound Book Tours


Chapter 1: The Funeral Crasher

Ben

I’d never been to a funeral without a casket before.

Then again, I’d never known a missing person before.

This trip was full of firsts.

The funeral home had managed to fit about eighty folding chairs into their cramped, stuffy parlor, and they were all full of mourners and well-wishers. This wouldn’t have been so bad if the funeral director’s promise of having the air conditioning fixed in twenty minutes had actually been true. The mid-summer heat had transformed the room into a pressure cooker that smelled heavily of sweat and flowers. I couldn’t leave. I wanted to, if only for a minute so I could clear my head, but I couldn’t because I had to be there for my mother, and she had to be there for the dead girl’s mother.

Missing. Not dead. Missing.

Where a casket would have been stood a large yearbook picture of a pretty blonde girl wearing a nice, not-too-fancy dress. Her smile was gorgeous and hopeful, unaware that less than a year after the picture was taken it would be blown up and surrounded by more flowers and teddy bears than you could count.

Haley Perkins.

We were friends, once. Not close friends, not even good friends—when we were both six, we’d liked each other well enough, and, since my mother was best friends in college with her mother, we got used to playing together during my mother’s infrequent trips to Prospero. It didn’t last long, as we each soon entered the age where playing with the opposite sex was considered gross, but we were nice enough to smile and say hello and spend a few polite minutes together whenever our mothers would force us to.

I wasn’t that choked up about her death (disappearance), but there was still something surreal about actually knowing the person whose funeral you’re attending.

The program said that the services were set to begin in ten minutes. Some of Haley’s friends and my mother would deliver eulogies about how lovely and special a girl she was, about how she had brightened all of their lives, and how the world would be a much worse place for not having her in it. Standard stuff. The kind of stuff that would break any audience into a chorus of tears and moans of grief.

Any normal audience at least. This audience’s behavior was anything but normal.

Don’t get me wrong, there was plenty of sadness to go around. About half the audience, mostly high school-aged, probably Haley’s friends, were emotional and, if not already crying, were on the verge of tears. The older members of the audience, on the other hand, the parents, the select representatives of the Town Council who had decided to attend… their reactions were a bit off. While most of them put their best sad faces on, more than anything else there seemed to be an air of fear, even frustration as they occasionally whispered amongst themselves. Even stranger, I could swear that a few of the older people looked happy, as if this were a day of celebration instead of mourning.

This is why I never really looked forward to Mom’s trips to Prospero; it’s just oozing with small town strange. Big city strange I can deal with. I expect it. In all the noise and anonymity, I can avoid it.

Small town strange is another beast entirely, that kind of strange where you know, you just know that everybody’s watching you and judging your every move… I don’t know how anyone could handle that for long without going completely insane. Top it off with Prospero’s tourist-friendly reputation for the bizarre….

I needed some air. I tugged on my mother’s sleeve.

“Mom?”

She looked at me, daubing her puffy eyes with a tissue, “Yes, Ben?”

“Can I go get some water?”

She smiled, faintly, looking to the woman wrapped in her arms, “Sure. Could you get a cup for me and your Aunt Christine as well?”

“Sure,” I said as I got up and walked down the center aisle. Late arrivals milled around the back. Among them was a gawky-looking girl in a long-sleeved black dress that might have belonged to her grandmother, who looked like she had only been told how dresses worked just in time for this memorial service. Her curly red hair hung haphazardly around her face, a striking contrast against her pale skin. A pair of thick, black-framed glasses made her eyes look enormous.

I couldn’t be sure, but she seemed to be staring intently at me as I walked into the next room. I’d have been unsettled even if the town itself hadn’t already put me on edge.

In the next parlor over, a buffet table had been set out with a selection of hors d’oeuvres and bottles of water in ice. I grabbed a few, cracked one open, and took a long, grateful sip.

When I turned to head back to the service, the red-haired girl was standing in my way. I was startled, almost dropping my bottle to the floor. Up close, I could see that she stood barely five feet tall, and if it hadn’t been for the intensity of her gaze, I could almost have tripped over her before noticing she was there. She didn’t move.

“Hi,” I said.

“Hi,” she replied. An awkward silence followed. Though I could already tell she was hardly the world’s greatest conversationalist, given the day, I wanted to be polite.

“I’m Ben,” I said, holding out my hand.

She didn’t take it. She only said, “I know.”

Again, that unsettled feeling was grabbing my stomach, but being too polite for my own good, I couldn’t act on it. “Well, then you’ve got me at a disadvantage?”

“Mina. Mina Todd,” she said quickly, her eyes leaving me for a moment as if worried someone might overhear her. Satisfied that she was clear, she smiled briefly. As odd-looking as she was, she had a radiant smile.

“Did you… did you know Haley well?” I asked. Though this could have been a minefield, it did seem like the safest conversation topic.

“Better than she knew me,” Mina said, shrugging.

She did not elaborate.

This was getting a little too weird for my tastes. I could have doubled back into the parlor easily, but considering the stifling heat, I decided on a different approach. I reached for my pocket, pulled out my phone, and forced a surprised look on my face.

“My phone’s vibrating, I’ll be right back.”

“No it isn’t,” she said simply.

“It’s very quiet,” I explained, starting to turn away from her to make my escape.

“No it isn’t,” she repeated. She looked at me, worried, clearly wanting to say more. She was weird, I understood that, but something really had her on edge.

I quickened my pace. Thankfully, she didn’t follow.

It was nice outside. Hot, but nice. A faint breeze brought in the scent of the redwood trees that surrounded Prospero. I realized then that, Prospero’s strangeness aside, I could probably deal with summer in Northern California, better than a lot of the places we’d lived at least. Better than Virginia and Texas, and those three weeks we spent in Phoenix. That quick escape was one of the few times I was glad my mom liked to move around so much.

I sighed, took another sip of water. This trip was another excuse. I knew it. Mom wasn’t happy with her job and she hated our landlord. When she said we were coming up here to offer comfort to Aunt Christine and she didn’t know how long we’d stay, I knew, I just knew that it would be her way of quitting her job. Something would happen, she’d decide to stay longer, and then, the way she had at least once every two years since Dad died, she’d say it was time for a change.

If it had been funny, I’d have laughed. Instead, I kicked a stone across the funeral home’s parking lot. It bounced harmlessly off the tire of a Jeep parked near the exit. I watched it skip out into the street, wondering how far it would go.

Then I saw her.

There was a girl walking down the middle of the street, dirty and barefoot, wrapped in a tattered old Army blanket. She looked like a zombie, unmindful of the cuts on her feet, how little the blanket covered up her probably naked form, and the car that was barreling down the road toward her.

It was going too fast, and the driver wouldn’t see her in time around the blind corner.

I didn’t think; I just ran.

The car rounded the corner.

The squealing of brakes filled the air.

I collided with the girl, knocking her off her feet. We fell into a ditch full of dry pine needles by the side of the road. The car swerved, missed us by inches and ran into a lamp post in front of the funeral home. Its hood crunched inward and glass scattered everywhere. I don’t know what was louder; the unending blare of its horn after the impact, or the sound of the lamppost falling down and crunching another car in the parking lot.

Someone screamed.

I looked down at the girl, rolling off her when I realized, shamefacedly, that she had broken my fall.

“I’m sorry,” I said. “I meant to do that better. Are you all right?”

She was coming out of her trance. The vacant gaze was soon replaced by the look of a person coming out of a deep slumber.

Sitting up, I repeated, “Are you all ri—”

Then I saw her face. She’d lost some weight, needed a shower and some shampoo, and was a little bloody, but there was no denying it was her.

“Haley?” I asked.

Her eyes focused on me, shocked and fearful. Letting out an animalistic scream of grief and fear, she wrapped her arms powerfully around me and wept. Comforting crying girls had never been one of my strong suits, let alone beautiful girls who’d been missing for two months and declared legally dead and then showed up naked outside their own memorial services. I like to think I did my best as she hung on to me.

People from the service had started filing outside, checking out the accident. Some were already calling 911, which gave me one less thing to do, thankfully.

“Can you walk?” I asked, getting only loud sobs in response. I took that as a no.

Carefully, I cradled Haley in my arms and picked her up, making sure the blanket covered her. She was so light. Too light. As quickly as I could, I made my way to the accident site and the crowd that had gathered around it.

“We need help here!” I called.

With a car accident to look at, they noticed us slowly, but when they did, we were swarmed. There were all the reactions you’d expect on an occasion like this. Shock. Excitement. Elation. I set her down, and though she regained her footing for a moment, she soon sat down on the curb, holding the blanket around her protectively as people hugged her, questioned her, or just stood around crying. People called for her mother, and soon she came running out with my mom in tow.

Aunt Christine screamed in surprise, tears of joy running down her cheeks as she wrapped her arms around Haley and me. She babbled incoherently as she kissed first Haley, then me on the cheek, and though I was soon pulled aside by the crowd for congratulations from a couple dozen strangers, I did catch her saying the words “Thank you” and “hero.”

Within minutes there was a police car parked in front of the funeral home and, five minutes after that, an ambulance to take Haley and the driver to the nearby medical center. By then I’d had my hand shaken and my back pounded so many times I was thinking of asking for a ride over there with them.

It was right around the time they started to load Haley into the back of the ambulance that I felt the insistent poking on the back of my shoulder. I turned around, expecting another well-wisher or congratulatory handshake.

Instead, I got Mina Todd. She looked at me, almost frantic, as she wrote furiously on her funeral program with a marker and thrust it into my hands.

“We can’t talk here. It’s not safe. Just… call me, okay?”

Before I could ask what she meant, she darted off into the crowd and disappeared. I looked back to Haley as she was loaded into the ambulance. She smiled at me, grateful, and for a moment, it almost looked like she said “Thank you.”

I was a hero. A hero. I gotta say, it felt pretty good. They wouldn’t call me a hero for much longer, not the guy who just saw her wandering in the street and decided to help, but I was going to enjoy it while they did.

It was almost an afterthought when I finally looked at the message Mina had scrawled on the back of her funeral program. Beneath her phone number, in large block letters, she had printed three simple words.

THAT ISN’T HALEY

Release Week Blitz: Why I Loathe Sterling Lane by Ingrid Paulson

Hello Readers!  Welcome to the Release Week Blitz for

Why I Loathe Sterling Lane
by Ingrid Paulson!

Per her 537 rules, Harper Campbell keeps her life tidy—academically and socially. But the moment Sterling Lane transfers into her tiny boarding school, her twin brother gets swept up in Sterling’s pranks and schemes and nearly gets expelled. Harper knows it’s Sterling’s fault, and to protect her brother, she vows to take him down. As she exposes his endless school violations, he keeps striking back, framing her for his own infractions. Worst of all, he’s charmed the administration into thinking he’s harmless, and only Harper sees him for the troublemaker he absolutely is.

As she breaks rule after precious rule in her battle of wits against Sterling and tension between them hits a boiling point, she’s horrified to discover that perhaps the two of them aren’t so different. And maybe she doesn’t entirely hate him after all. Teaming up with Sterling to save her brother might be the only way to keep from breaking the most important rule—protecting Cole.

Why I Loathe Sterling Lane by Ingrid Paulson
Publication Date: June 6, 2017
Publisher: Entangled Teen

Google Play | BAM | Chapters | Indies | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | TBD | iBooks


Ingrid Paulson does not, in fact, loathe anyone. Although the snarky sense of humor and verbal barbs in Why I Loathe Sterling Lane might suggest otherwise (and shock those who think they know her best).

Ingrid lives in San Francisco with her husband and children and enjoys long-distance running, eavesdropping, and watching science documentaries. She has always loved books and writing short stories, but was surprised one day to discover the story she was working on wasn’t so short any more. Valkyrie Rising, a paranormal girl power story was Ingrid’s first novel. Expect another humorous contemporary romance to join the list soon.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest

 

Book Blitz: K-Love

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K-Love
by Alice Cornwall & Devon Atwood
(Korean Drama Series, #1)
Publication date: May 4th 2017
Genres: New Adult, Romance
Synopsis:

Chase has been set up. She finds herself on a blind date with a Korean hottie, and all because her mom obsessively loves Korean romance dramas. It turns out that Daniel Bak is actually really dreamy, but things take a turn for the worse when Chase happens upon stolen research on her university professor’s laptop. It throws her into the arms of wealthy corporate heir Hyun Tae, who also happens to be Daniel’s best friend.

Caught between both men, and hunted down by a vengeful CEO, Chase must rely on Hyun Tae’s protection. But when the drama settles, where will her heart land?

Purchase:

GIVEAWAY

Blitz-wide giveaway (INTL)
  • 3x “k-love” tote bags

KLove

Tomato Soup

The lunch lady ladled the soup into a bowl and placed a Styrofoam plate with the grilled cheese next to the bowl on her tray. “Anything else?”

“That’s it, thanks.” Chase smiled.

The Asian kid behind her asked for a salad. She caught a glimpse of him out of the corner of her eye as he got his plate of food. He was wearing white skinny jeans, navy sneakers, and a sort of silky gray T-shirt that definitely looked designer. They shuffled along in line until finally it was her turn to pay. Chase handed the thin student cashier her card. He looked at the debit card briefly before handing it back to her. “You need your student card.”

Chase took the card, suddenly nervous. “My what?”

The student had dark blond hair and kind features, but his look of exasperation told her he was thoroughly fed up with answering this question. “Your student ID card. You pay for lunch with it. You can’t get lunch any other way.”

“What, seriously?” Chase looked down at her tray. Her stomach gurgled. “So I have to get my card and then come back?”

“Sorry.”

She swallowed. “My mom didn’t say anything about a student ID card.” The cashier gave her a blank look of disbelief, so she added, “She works in registration.”

“Okay. Well, sorry, but you need a student ID.”

Someone sighed behind her. She was holding up the line.

“Excuse me,” a low voice said from behind her. Chase looked over her shoulder and found the guy with the designer shirt leaning toward her. He held out a student ID card, and reaching over her, handed it to the cashier. “Just pay for both.”

Chase turned to face him, her eyes widening. “Oh . . . ah, wait . . .”

The cashier hesitated.

“No, don’t do that,” Chase insisted. No, no, no! Don’t do that! I don’t like owing a complete stranger, thanks very much.

The guy gave the cashier a nod so full of confidence, Chase was pretty sure anyone would have obeyed an order from him. The cashier swiped the card.

Chase realized she was staring. For one thing, this guy was otherworldly beautiful. He had high cheekbones and warm brown eyes that tilted up at an exotic angle. His chin sloped down to a square point from his razor-like jawline. She almost couldn’t find words to respond to him. And besides that, he held himself like he owned the school.

His eyes flitted to her. “You can go now.”

“Oh.” Direct. And people thought she was made of stone. “Thanks. Sorry.”

“It’s fine.” He had an accent, but it was barely detectable.

She scurried forward with her tray, her face hot and her calm ruffled.

She whirled around to face him but miscalculated the motion by a mile. She collided with the generous stranger, her tray flying off to the side. Tomato soup splattered all over the floor, washing over both their shoes in a torrent of scalding liquid.

The guy jumped back and then looked up from his shoes to her face, his scowl a mixture of incredulity and shock.

The racket in the cafeteria quieted almost instantly. All eyes turned to them. Chase stood there like an idiot with tomato soup trickling down her leg and seeping between her toes. She couldn’t seem to find her voice with the entire cafeteria staring at her.


Marshmallow

“Don’t slap me,” he murmured, so low it was almost a whisper.

And then he lowered his lips to hers, catching them in a firm, but gentle kiss. Chase’s eyes flew wide open, and her hands went to his chest, as if to push him away. But he gave the barest shake of his head before pulling her closer and deepening the kiss. Chase couldn’t help it. Her eyes fluttered closed, and she found her hands clutching his shirt instead of pushing him away. He tasted minty and clean, and his lips were so marshmallow soft she wanted to melt like the chocolate on a s’more. Whatever this was, it was really, really nice.


Blind Date

“My name is Daniel Bak. You don’t know me, but I met your mom, and she told me that you wouldn’t mind going on a blind date.”

Should she say she was busy? Or get it over with? She texted him as she entered the brick physical education building. “Yes, she told me about you.”

She wasn’t rejecting him, but she wasn’t committing to a date either. She found her way to Room 108, and as she settled in a desk, his response binged back. “From your picture I could tell you don’t need blind dates, by the way. If you want to back out, that’s okay. I’ve never done this either.”

Chase bit her lip and texted back. “I’ve definitely never been on a blind date, and I’m a little crazy for not disowning my mom.”

Other students were filling up the classroom around her, but Chase found herself waiting for Daniel’s reply instead of paying attention to her surroundings.

Book Blitz: Fate of the Stars

Fate of the Stars
by Arwen Paris
Publication date: September 1st 2017
Genres: Science Fiction, Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
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Synopsis:

When the fate of the world rests upon you…

Allison Delaney wants to spend her senior year healing from the loss of her father, to leave the shadows of his death and her junior year break-down behind. A Labor Day beach party seems like a good place to start…but there’s more danger lurking than anyone could imagine. Death is coming to Earth if the pods of infectious creatures aren’t stopped. But only one human can help…

To live or die is no longer a choice.

Eenoki is a protector of life but must have a sentient host to fight the invasion. A teenage girl would not be the best choice, but out of desperation Eenoki invades Allison’s mind and body, granting her unnatural abilities and strengths – and helping her escape certain death when the first wave of pods land.

As destruction rains down on Earth’s population, Allison realizes to save everyone, she must make the ultimate choice: Reject her human side and bond with Eenoki to become the Earth’s Priestess – or be killed along with the rest of humanity.

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AUTHOR BIO:

Arwen.jpg
Arwen Paris is the author of young adult fiction. Her debut YA Sci-fi Urban Fantasy novel FATE OF THE STARS releases September 1, 2017. The actions packed pages of her novels are filled with characters that are forced to face fears they never expected. When she’s not writing, you can see posts of her (too many) vacations that keep her sane. Arwen lives in Washington, has a big crazy family & after the day job, she writes Fiction For the Fearless – #F3Fanatic

Author links:


GIVEAWAY
Blitz-wide giveaway (INTL)
  • $100 Amazon gift card

EXCERPT:

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Why would they come out here?

I stagger back, shaking as I remember my narrow escape from town, and the aliens’ hissing reaction to sound. I hobble to the pilothouse. “Pete!” I shout, twisting the handle. It refuses to turn. “Shut off the engines.” I beat on the door.

“What the hell this yellin’ about?” he shouts, throwing the door open at me. The other passengers scream. Pete turns toward the shore. “Oh my God.” He runs inside. Revving the motor, he swings us back out into the bay. A loud screech jabs my eardrums as metal grinds on metal, and the engines come to an abrupt stop.

“No. No!” Pete shouts, turning the key. There’s no reaction at all.

Over the wind and waves, an odd clicking sound makes my flesh crawl. We all stand motionless trying to identify it. The clicks grow louder, overlapping until they become shrill. Something strikes the hull with a heavy thud, and everyone jumps. Then another pound on the boat, and another. I can’t decide whether to search for the source of the noise or hide below. But I have to know, so I follow the sound to the rear of the ship. Bobbing on the waves is a human, his face streaked with a black oily residue that’s oozing from his nose and mouth. It resembles the oily residue I saw on the back of Bob’s neck. His eyes are opaque and dead. Nausea rises in my gut.

They didn’t die. I’m not sure what they are now, but they’re no longer human.

I’ve put everyone here in danger with my selfish request to go to shore, attracting their attention. I grow limp and drop my head back, staring up at the sky.

So close, a thin voice says, seemingly right in my ear. It’s the voice that warned me to run. Clenching my jaw, I lash out through my mind at the voice. So close to what, dying?

Discordant memories churn in my head. I close my eyes to still the illusions. A glow illuminates the back of my eyelids and warmth spreads through me.

You must see, Allison. The only way left to explain in time.


BOOK PLAYLIST:

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CONNECT WITH ARWEN:

http://www.ArwenParis.com

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Facebook.com/ArwenParisF3Fanatic

 

Bookstagram Blitz: Natalie and the Nerd

Natalie and the Nerd banner

Natalie and the Nerd
by Amy Sparling

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Age category: Young Adult

Release Date: 30 May, 2017


Blurb:

Natalie’s school work is the last priority on her long list of things to worry about. Since her parent’s divorce, her mom’s boutique—their only source of income—is about to go under, and Natalie spent all summer and most of her senior year trying to save the little shop. Now that she’s in danger of failing high school, the assistant principal (who happens to be her evil step mother) is making Natalie join daily tutoring sessions with Jonah Garza, the school’s valedictorian.

Taking math lessons from the rich nerdy boy is the last thing Natalie wants to do, but Jonah needs these community service hours to get into Harvard, so he’s not going to give up on her. In addition to working at the boutique and studying with Jonah, Natalie’s lifelong crush just started paying attention to her. She’s being pulled in so many directions, she doesn’t think to question why the son of the biggest business mogul in town is suddenly trying to win her affections.

When her crush betrays her and the store goes into foreclosure, Natalie has to choose between fighting harder to keep her mom’s dream alive, or fighting to pass high school and start a future of her own.

You can find Natalie and the Nerd on Goodreads

You can buy Natalie and the Nerd on Amazon


About the Author:

Amy Sparling

Amy Sparling is the author of The Summer Unplugged Series, Deadbeat & other awesome books for younger teens. She lives in Texas and has an addiction to sparkly nail polish, taking photos of her cute dog, and swooning over book boyfriends.

You can find and contact Amy here:
– Website
– Facebook
– Twitter
– Instagram
– Goodreads


There is a tour wide giveaway for the bookstagram blitz for Natalie and the Nerd. One winner will win a $20 Amazon Giveaway + a signed paperback.

To enter this giveaway you need to make a picture of the book Natalie and the Nerd by Amy Sparling and post it on social media with the hashtag #NATNGiveaway.


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Cover Reveal: Seraphina’s Vengeance

Seraphina’s Vengeance
by Sheena Hutchinson
(Seraphina #3)
Publication date: July 2017
Genres: New Adult, Paranormal, Romance
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Synopsis:

One year ago, Seraphina’s entire world seemed to have dived into a mythical land over night. She’s somehow even gotten used to the madness of it all. But what happens when the craziness stops? Things become quiet… too quiet.

She should have known better, Sera should have known that things weren’t as quiet as they seemed. After one of the best nights of her life, Sera is forced into this treacherous journey to save one of her loved ones.

But following the path of evil begins to take its toll on Sera. As she struggles with her own internal dilemmas, Nate starts to take matters into his own hands. When this unseen world finally begins to affect Sera’s emotions and her relationship. Can she hold it together to save her loved ones? Will love conquer all? Or will it turn her evil… forever?

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AUTHOR BIO:

Sheena
Sheena is a born and raised New Yorker, even her writing can’t seem to hide her hard sarcasm. She claims destiny has lead her back to her true passion for writing.
She constantly strives to be a positive role model and writes stories that empower and inspire. Sheena always roots for the underdog, believes in love at first sight, and that everyone should have their happily ever after.
While God is currently still writing her love story, she continues to put all her effort into her writing as she is constantly getting new inspiration.

For more info, updates, and fun facts visit her website at www.SheenaHutchinson.com

Author links:

Seraphina’s Vengeance by Sheena Hutchinson, designed by Cover Me, Darling

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Book Blitz: The Bitter Taste

The Bitter Taste: A Collection of Short Stories
by Various Authors
Genre; Contemporary Fiction
Release Date: May 20th 2017
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Summary:
Dive into the worlds of eight (8) sensational writers as they create engaging stories that will leave you spellbound the moment jump in.

The Bitter Taste is a collection of short stories written by eight writers from across the globe. Each story has been written to give different renditions of the title.

“Lena is on the brink of divorce from her estranged husband, Daniel, and she is doing everything in her power to make his life miserable. But decisions made the night after a confrontation will change not only Daniel’s life but hers as well.” – The Georgia Peach that Spoiled by Ny Qunaa

“After moving back to her hometown, Sasha figures out that honesty and love don’t come from the same bottle” – Bottles and Basslines by Sarah Cooke

“They say when death knocks at your door, your life flashes before your eyes. However, is it enough time for someone to redeem themselves before it’s too late?” – Redemption by Ruthie

“Only one decision can change history as we know it. Jenny doesn’t know what the future holds but she is certain of one thing, there can never be a future for her in the village with her grandmother.” – The One Way Trip by Kelvin O’Ralph

“A popular young woman questions the value of her own life after receiving a devastating diagnosis.” – Fireworks in Winter by Ameenah M. Hassan

“This story explores the mental trauma that lingers in a sexual assault victim for the rest of her life and how she puts an end to her agony.” – The Frozen Dish by Benazir Mungloo

“Tony still clutches onto an old guilt while others moved ahead erasing the memories left behind. Acceptance and forgiveness will not be seen without reliving.” – History Lesson by Silvia Latife

“Here is a story about a man who realizes that even though he has achieved a lot for himself, he has missed out on the most important moment in his life.” – The Little Things by Ignacio Bandoni

The Bitter Taste on Versetab | Amazon


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Excerpt

Story 1 – The Georgia Peach that Spoiled by Ny Qunaa

It was hot outside the courthouse. Sweltering hot. It was the kind of hot that could make a Georgia Peach spoil in the summertime. Lena sat outside on a wooden bench that faced the courthouse and stared at Lady Justice who stood on top of the clock tower on the historic Renaissance Revival stone building. Lady Justice looked worn with defeat in her eyes.

Twenty minutes passed. The beads of sweat that were on Lena’s forehead began to roll down her face. It was too hot to wear all black in the Georgia heat, but she was mourning, mourning the death of justice in the legal system.

She sat on the bench flabbergasted by what the District Attorney told her. The DA called Lena on Monday and said that she wanted to meet with her to discuss the case. Lena told the DA that she would be available to meet at the end of the week. So Friday the 13th at high noon was when they met. Imagine meeting someone on an unlucky day during the time of a decisive confrontation. She didn’t expect to hear good news so she wore black in anticipation of what was to come.

“Good afternoon, Mrs. Whitfield,” the DA said as Lena walked into her office.

“Good afternoon,” Lena replied.

The way the DA greeted her was grim, so Lena knew the meeting was not going to end well.

“Look, Mrs. Whitfield, I’m going to cut right to it. Mr. Whitfield’s lawyer presented evidence that hurts your credibility. Because of that, I am not going to prosecute him.”

“But I have a recording of the incident. It should surely be enough to prosecute him.”

“OK, let’s listen to it,” she said skeptically.

Lena played the tape. It replayed verbatim everything that happened that early morning in November.

After the tape had stopped, the DA looked at Lena aloofly. “Mrs. Whitfield, I cannot use the tape as evidence. Mr. Whitfield did not say anything to you in an aggressive manner nor did it prove that he hit you. It shows that you were aggressive towards him. Based on that and your lack of credibility, I am not going to prosecute him.”

“This legal system is rigged,” Lena said as she got up to leave. She picked up her purse and stormed out of the DA’s office.

“What is wrong with the legal system?” Lena thought. “The system is supposed to protect victims like me and instead, it slapped me in the face by dismissing the charges. The DA is just another person that my narcissistic, soon-to-be ex-husband manipulated. How could she not see how conniving he was?”

Lena began to think back to that early morning in November, a day that started off ordinary and ended up with her lying on the ground.


GIVEAWAY:

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Book Blitz Organized by:

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Book Blitz: Lady of Sherwood

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Lady of Sherwood
by Molly Bilinski
(Outlaws of Sherwood #1)
Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication date: April 24th 2017
Genres: Fairy Tales, Fantasy, Young Adult
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Synopsis:

Robin of Lockesly was neither the son her father wanted, nor the daughter her mother expected. When she refuses an arranged marriage to a harsh and cruel knight, the deadly events that follow change her destiny forever.

After a night of tragedy, Robin and the few remaining survivors flee to Nottingham. With a newfound anonymity, they start to live different lives. There, she and her band make mischief, robbing from the rich and giving to the poor. But charity isn’t the only thing she wants–she wants revenge.

As the sheriff draws his net closer, Robin’s choices begin to haunt her. She’ll have to choose between what’s lawful and what her conscience believes is right–all while staying one step ahead of the hangman.

Lady of Sherwood is a unique young adult retelling of the beloved Robin Hood legend. Filled with action and romance, this new series follows a teenage heroine through her fantastic, yet dangerous adventures.


 

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Purchase: 

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AUTHOR BIO:

Molly_
Molly is a 2013 graduate of William Smith College with a bachelors in chemistry. She puts her science powers to use by day and is a novelist by night (and weekend…and any five minutes she can find). When she’s not writing or working, she’s scoping out coffee shops, exploring her new city (Buffalo, NY), taking day trips to Canada, and putting together puzzles.

Lady of Sherwood Teaser 1

GIVEAWAY

  • Clean Teen Publishing Mystery Box (Intl winner would get eBook prizes)

Lady of Sherwood Teaser 3

Bonus Scene

Robin stood in front of Much, Jemma’s staff in her hands and raised as though she were going to swing for Much’s head. Much, with a look of intense concentration on her round face, gripped a stick and let Jemma reposition her feet and hands as necessary.

“Steady your weight,” Jemma said quietly. “You want to have a strong base, but you need to be able to move quickly.”

“If I bring this down, you almost want to rise to meet it instead of letting it push you back,” Robin added.

“Stay ahead of it, then.” Much braced, and Robin brought the staff down slowly enough for Much to anticipate the movement and react accordingly.

“Balance.” Jemma adjusted her elbow. “The last thing you want is to be knocked on your arse because then you’ve got to dodge the attack and get back on your feet, which is tricky.”

Much smiled wryly. “Is that why Robin shoots them from a distance?”

She giggled. “Probably, but have you seen her when she’s got to use her bow like a staff?”

“It’s a good, solid yew bow.” Robin put a little more pressure against Much’s stick to see what would happen, and grinned brightly when the younger girl stayed strong and balanced. She even pushed back a bit, and Robin’s grin sharpened.

Robin leaned away, slid the staff down her palms to a different grip, and drew back in preparation to jab for somewhere in Much’s midriff.

“Now, if you’re very quick and confident, then you can swing down and knock it aside.” Jemma guided Much’s hands and arms into the movement, and used the stick to deflect Robin’s attack. It happened slowly, so Much could ease into it.

“That’s going to hurt if you get hit with it,” Robin said, snapping her arms back as though she were going to try stabbing forward again. “It’s going to crack or break your ribs if it connects, and there’s no shame in jumping out of the way.”

Jemma put her hands on Much’s waist and helped her swerve her hips to the side and out of the line of fire from the staff in Robin’s hands. “Swerve first, and then try to knock it out of the way. If you can somehow knock it out of her hands, that’s great, but usually you won’t get someone to part with their weapon.”

“Especially men,” Robin added. “That’s who you’ll be against, most likely.”

Much froze.

Robin lowered her staff and rested one end of it on the toe of her boot like she frequently did with her bow. She rubbed the side of her nose and softly said, “It’s…it’s ugly. There’s nothing dignified about it because someone is actively trying to hurt you and your focus is on making sure they can’t.”

She lowered the stick. “And you want to hurt them back.”

“Only to give yourself enough time and space to get away,” Jemma added gently. “If it comes down to it, whether it’s them or you, we’d always rather have you.”

“It’s a difficult choice to make, Much.” Robin reached out and wrapped her fingers around Much’s wrist. “We’d rather none of you lot – you, Kitty, and Maggie – have to make it.”

The implication sunk in a bit, and Much took a deep breath only to blow it out again. “Right.” She readjusted her grip on the stick and raised it once more. “Again?”

“Absolutely,” Jemma said. “Remember what I told you about your elbows.”

Robin smiled sharply and tightened her fingers around the staff.


Lady of Sherwood Teaser 2


Excerpts:

(471 words, from Chapter 4, Consequences)

Other girls—some of the youngest ones from the kitchen—came from the brush. Smoke clung to them like a shroud, and tears had run in rivers down soot-stained cheeks. Ginny, the youngest at six, ran to Jemma and attached herself like a limpet to the older girl’s legs.

“Where is everyone else?” Robin asked, glancing between them and then back at the flaming manor. “Where is—where’s—” Her face heated even as the rest of her body grew chilled, and she stuffed her first in her mouth to muffle her scream.

“We are the only ones.”

Robin looked up at Kitty, surprised to find herself on her knees in the damp grass. She curled her shaking fingers into fists, and then rested them on her thighs. “How—what happened?”

“That man,” the girl went on, absently twisting her skirt in her hands. “The one who’d been courting you… he came for you in the night. When he couldn’t find you, he gathered everyone in the great hall.”

“Except you lot?” Jemma inquired.

“He was hurting her.” Kitty’s eyes took on a glossy quality. “He had Maggie by the hair, and he was hurting her. She had Ginny behind her, protecting her. I—I hit him over the head with a candle stand.”

“We went through the old tunnel,” another voice piped up. Maggie slipped her hand into Kitty’s. “Me and Kitty and Ginny.”

“And my—my mother?” Robin took a deep, shuddering breath.

“She kept her secret. We heard ‘im, shouting. He wanted to know where you was.” Ginny, this time. She wandered away from Jemma, and Robin opened her arms for her to nestle into. She’d helped Jemma look after the younger servants on the sly for years. Whether they’d been orphaned at birth or left to the streets, Jemma had brought them each back to the manor, and she’d given them a home and a hope the rest of the world didn’t offer. “She didn’t tell, Robin. She didn’t tell him where you was.”

“I heard Charlotte say you were gone,” Maggie said quietly. “She’d gone to your mother’s chambers to tell her. Miss Jemma was gone, too, and so was your bow.” She shrugged, a delicate lift of her shoulders. “We all thought you had gone to the field.”

“And she said nothing?” Robin’s heart beat hard against her ribcage.

“Lady was very brave,” Ginny murmured.

“She was,” Robin agreed. “Like you are. You all.” She looked at each of the other girls, who stared back, clearly waiting.

It hit her then—they were waiting for her. With the only survivors of the manor in front of her, and her mother dead—God rest her soul, God hold them all in His hand—it occurred to her in that moment. She was the Lady of Lockesly.

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(313 Words, from Chapter Five: Much, the Miller’s Daughter)

“That still makes it murder. It doesn’t change that. Nothing changes that.”

“You’re an outlaw, then.” Maggie shrugged. “You’re the Lady of Lockesly. You’re a warrior woman from the old tales. None of those things mean we don’t want you to stay with us.”

“You came back to the manor,” Kitty added. “You came back for us. To find Gisborne and protect us. You could have abandoned us.”

Robin’s expression morphed into something stricken, and her eyes widened. “Why would I have done that? You’re—you’re family. You’ve always been as much family as my mother.” True, Jemma was the sister she’d never been gifted with, but the others had a spot in her heart all the same. One that was rapidly growing by the second.

“Then come with us.” Maggie’s tone said she wouldn’t take no for an answer. “Be an outlaw, but come with us. Even outlaws need friends.”

“I’m an outlaw, same as you,” Jemma murmured when Robin looked meaningfully at her. “I went with you to kill him, and I attacked his men.”

Robin locked eyes with each girl in front of her and she found nothing but tempered steel staring back at her. All of them might have been younger than her and Jemma in physical years, yet they showed a resilience and a courage born from the night’s events.

Robin knew she’d been right earlier to call them smart. Nottingham was large enough for them to all blend into new crowds, and if they kept their wits about them, no one would ever have to know the last survivors of Lockesly Manor were harboring two outlaws.

“All right,” she said. “We stay together and head for Nottingham tomorrow at dark. We don’t want to be seen,” she added. “Not if any of Gisborne’s men are still in the village.” And looking for revenge if he was dead.

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(488 words, from Chapter Ten, Robbery the First)

Once the guards had disappeared, both of them riding ahead of the team pulling the carriage, Jemma tried to get situated with a wince.

“Are you uncomfortable?” he asked.

“A bit. Just—if you could—” She gave him a small smile as he obligingly slid along the seat to help her arrange herself. He touched her leg. Her head dropped back against the wall of the carriage with a thud and a noise she couldn’t quite keep contained in the back of her throat.

“Better?” he asked, easing back onto his own seat once she’d let her expression loosen.

“Much.” She drew herself up straight and proper. The carriage lurched forward into motion again, a steady clip along the road to Nottingham. “Don’t make a sound, and we won’t have to hurt you.”

“Hurt me?”

“Can’t fully draw from this angle, but it’s still sharp, and it’ll still hurt,” Robin growled, deepening her voice in an effort to disguise it. With her face concealed in the depths of her hood, and the arrowhead pressed into the man’s cheek, Jemma had to bite the inside of her mouth to keep from giggling at the sight.

“Now,” Robin said, balanced against the sway of the carriage. “Where’s your purse?”

He made a sharp movement. Jemma tensed, heart beating faster even as Robin pushed the arrowhead so far into his cheek it looked like he ought to be bleeding.

“Motion. She’ll get it.”

She leaned forward, and then ran her fingers along his waist until she found the purse string. Sitting back, she opened it, whistling under her breath at the amount of coin piled in it. Jemma met Robin’s eyes, nodded, and hid the purse away somewhere on her person.

“Not a word until you get to the gates of Nottingham.” Jemma could hear the smirk in Robin’s voice when she added, “Distance isn’t a problem—if you stop the carriage, someone’s going to have an extra feather in his cap.”

“I will report you to the Sheriff,” he hissed.

“Please do.”

Cheeky, Robin. So cheeky. Jemma opened the carriage door as quietly as possible. The landscape went past at a decent clip. She vaguely remembered something about tucking and rolling from Robin’s early riding lessons on what to do in case she fell off the horse. She swallowed a snort.

“The people of Nottingham thank you for your kindness,” Robin said. “Do come again.”

Jemma took that as her cue, throwing herself from the moving carriage. Arms wrapped around her head, she rolled a few times, scrambled to her feet, and then darted for the cover of the trees further from the road. A muffled curse behind her informed her Robin had made her own exit—and then an arrow skimmed off the tree to Jemma’s right.

She glared over her shoulder.

Robin, her hood off, shrugged. “Accident,” she mouthed as she motioned for her to keep running.


Interview with Author Blog Post

1) Tell me about yourself and how you became a writer.

I’ve always had a fondness for books and a love of reading. I think I was seven, and I was in a Barnes & Noble, and thought it would be really cool to one day be able to see my own name on one of the books on the shelf. That’s always been sitting in the back of my mind, the overall goal of one day getting published, and I started shifting it from dream to reality when I was in high school.

Once I really started writing, I never quite stopped.

2) What’s your writing process like?

I’m typically not a planner. I don’t really outline other than major plot points – if I know them, because sometimes I don’t – and I usually let the flow of the story just take me along. I’ve gotten better about planning it out further than I used to, but I still more or less just sit down and start writing.

3) Does writing energize or exhaust you?

Both. There are some scenes – the more emotional ones for my characters – that make me feel drained afterward, and then there are some where their adrenaline is up so my adrenaline is up. Those are the writing sessions where I feel like I can just go for hours at a time with only a few breaks for more tea and some cookies and afterwards I feel like I could run around the block a few times without breaking a sweat.

4) Where did you get the idea for LADY OF SHERWOOD?

The legend of Robin Hood has been one of my ultimate favorites since I was a kid, and there’s been several different versions and retellings, but none that kind of flipped the original script in such a way. I wanted to write the book I would have loved to read when I was 13 or 14.

I wanted to keep the foundation of the legend, so most of the well known Robin Hood characters are there. Robin Hood, Little John, Maid Marian, Much the Miller’s Son, Will Scarlet, Will Stutely, and of course Friar Tuck are in the story, only with different faces, personalities, and backgrounds. I wanted to stay true to the roots of the Robin Hood legend while giving it a fresh take.

5) Who’s your favorite character?

That’s a really tough question. Robin and Much are my favorites. Robin because she’s got such a courageous, adventurous spirit (Jemma has to reign her in sometimes), and such a dry sense of humor. Much is so calm in the face of danger and adversity. It takes a lot to ruffle Much’s feathers, and I love that she’s always so collected.

6) How has the publishing journey been so far?

It’s been a learning experience, and it’s been fun. I knew there were a lot of steps from beginning to end, but I didn’t know there were that many, and it’s been really fascinating to be inside the process as it’s happening. I feel like everything’s building up to release day, and I’m really excited for it.


Interview with Characters

Today is going to be really fun because some of the Lockesly girls – Robin, Jemma, and Much – are here. Much is going to try her hand at being an interviewer, and I’m here to keep everyone on track as much as I’m able to.

Jemma: muttering It takes a village.

Robin: That’s why there’s most of Nottingham.

Much: Most of Nottingham likes us, now.

Me: This is true. It’s a good thing, too.

Much: Do I get to start the questions now?

Me: Whenever you’re ready.

Much: Right. deep breath How long have you two been best friends?

Robin: Since we were small children. I’ve known Jemma so long that I can’t imagine life without her.

Jemma: beaming You’re so sweet!

Robin: It’s true!

Much: I always forgot how red you get when you’re embarrassed because you’re so pale.

Robin: Not helpful!

Jemma: Best ask your next question, Much.

Much: Er…what’s the hardest thing about being an outlaw?

Jemma: The worry. I do a lot of worrying about the lot of you and what could go wrong at any given time during any given robbery. I’m amazed I have any hair left, and that I haven’t pulled it all out yet.

Robin: The price on my head feels like an archery target on my back, and I never used to look over my shoulder as much as I do now. I’m much more aware of who’s around me and where I am than I used to be living in Lockesly.

Me: Much? Do you want to answer?

Much: considering. No. Not right now. Can I ask the next question?

Robin: smirking You’re going to ask about the other side of the coin.

Much: Yes. What’s the best part about being an outlaw?

Jemma: There’s a sense of adventure and danger. When I’m not worrying that we’re all going to be arrested and die horrible deaths, it’s really kind of fun.

Robin: It’s like being like Boadicea, almost.

Jemma: nodding It’s also about doing what’s right.

Robin: I like the sense of helping people, that we’re doing good for others. That gives me such a warm feeling in the middle of my chest.

Much: In addition to the danger and the adventure?

Robin: Of course.

Jemma: There’s so much we can do for people when we can make our own rules doing it, and it lets us really make an impact for others.

Much: You two have always done that. Even in Lockesly.

Robin: I’ve never understood that if there’s something you can do, why you wouldn’t do it. Especially if it can help someone.

Me: Which just sort of led you to outlawing.

Jemma: It was a natural progression.

Much: nodding Being an outlaw means running and jumping and hiding. Out of all of us, who’s best at hiding?

Robin: From the Sheriff and his men?

Jemma: If it’s from the Sheriff and his men then it’s you. If it’s hide and seek, then Ginny. She’s tiny and she’s quieter than a church mouse.

Robin: I was going to say you. You’re really good at vanishing into the forest, Jem.

Much: And when the Sheriff isn’t involved?

Robin: Ginny and Kitty. Except if they hide together then one of them starts giggling and it’s downhill from there.

Various chuckles.

Me: Thanks for stopping by today.

Jemma: It was quite fun.

Robin: Baker, outlaw, and interviewer. Well done, Much.

You can read about the adventures of Robin, Jemma, Much, and the rest of the outlaws in LADY OF SHERWOOD, available on April 24, 2017.


Author Interview II

1) When did you first know you wanted to be a writer?

Sometime in middle school, I think. I’ve always loved books, but it was right around eighth grade when I wanted to give novel writing a serious attempt. That story was the most progress I’d made on one that I’d started, and it topped out at fifty pages. I did much better at the beginning of high school – that had a much better plot, better characters, and it was the first time I really thought I can do this.

2) Where did you get the idea for LADY OF SHERWOOD?

Robin Hood is one of my all-time favorite legends, and I wanted to do a different retelling. I wanted something fun and adventurous, and I wanted to make Robin Hood a leading lady. I think having Robin and most of the outlaws be woman makes for a very different dynamic, and I’m excited to see what people think of it.

3) How long did it take you to write the book?

It took almost a year in total, but if you take out the three or four months that are my busy season at work where I get very little writing done, then it’s only like six or eight months. I was working nights when I wrote it, and I was able to get some writing in between running tests and waiting for samples in the wee hours of the morning.

4) How many hours a day do you write?

It depends on the day. There are days when I don’t get any writing done at all, and there are days when I crank out 5,000+ words. I aim to write a little bit every day, at least, but it sometimes doesn’t always work out that way, unfortunately.

5) LADY OF SHERWOOD is a retelling – how did you pick names for your characters?

For many of them, I had an idea from the original legends. For example, Robin stayed Robin, and Little John became Jemma. There are a few others that have name twists like that, and some completely new characters that were named based on lists of popular names from the 14th century. And, for me, the name has to fit the character and the character’s personality, and I hope that comes through.

6) What was the hardest scene to write?

There were a couple that were really difficult to write, and I don’t want to say which ones because I don’t want to spoil anybody who hasn’t read it yet. I hope readers enjoy this new take on an old story.