Friday, November 27, 2015

ONCE UPON A DECEMBER by Sydney Logan / Black Friday Book Blast & Giveaway!


Hello and welcome to today's ONCE UPON A DECEMBER book blast and giveaway! Author Sydney Logan is celebrating Black Friday by putting her collection of short stories on sale!! You can grab ONCE UPON A DECEMBER for $0.99! Check out the excerpts below from each stories and enter to win!

Purchase from Amazon | Nook | iBooks | Kobo

ABOUT ONCE UPON A DECEMBER 

Christmas is in the air, and best selling author Sydney Logan is gifting readers with a short story collection, just in time for the holidays. Once Upon a December features Sydney’s latest story, “What Child Is This,” along with her previously published holiday stories in one complete collection. Available for the first time in both paperback and ebook, these heartwarming and romantic tales are sure to bring you joy this holiday season.

What Child Is This?
Estranged from his family and the love of his life, Thomas Fisher finds himself stranded in an airport on Christmas Eve. Imagine his surprise when a young boy takes him by the hand and shows him the way home.

Mistletoe Magic
Melanie Taylor is on a mission to find the perfect Christmas gift for her husband. Something special. Something expensive. Something that will save her marriage. Can a chance encounter on an elevator make her Christmas wish come true?

The Little Drummer Boy
It’s Christmas Eve, and Justin Banks is on the hunt for a last-minute gift for his wife, Megan. With the help of a homeless man and the beat of a drum, Justin stumbles upon the one thing Megan has always wanted. The one thing money can’t buy. It's amazing what we can hear if we just take a moment and really listen.

READ AN EXCERPT




Excerpt from “What Child Is This?”

Please come home for Christmas this year?
I don’t bother replying to my sister’s text. She knows I’m not coming home. I just power off my phone and stuff it back into my jacket. With a tired sigh, I lean back, close my eyes, and find myself doing the one thing I try never to do.
I think about the mess I’ve made of my life.
Ten years ago, I’d been an eighteen-year-old living in Paisley Springs, Tennessee—a tiny, rural town about two hours north of Nashville. Ten years ago, I’d been a popular athlete with dreams of becoming a professional basketball player. Ten years ago, I’d been the golden child of Dr. Benjamin and Olivia Fisher.
Ten years ago, I’d been a boy in love.
I still am.
Life is full of highways, and some are just too long when you’re trying to find your way home. In my case, some forgotten roads completely disappear. Time erases them, to the point that you begin to wonder if they ever really existed in the first place.
But they did. I know they did.
I close my eyes and try to ignore the image that flickers behind my eyelids. In my mind, Emma Hayes is still eighteen years old. With her long red hair and deep green eyes, she’d always looked at me as if I was her dream come true.
And I was, until I ripped those dreams away.
We were together for more than a year, and it had been the happiest time of my life. But being crazy in love makes you do stupid things. Careless things.
And then things happen that you never imagined would happen to you.

Excerpt from “Mistletoe Magic”

“Doing some last-minute shopping?” Ethan asked.
Melanie blinked rapidly before nodding.
“I am,” she replied stiffly. “You?”
He lifted the gold bag, giving it a little shake.
She nodded. “For someone special?”
“For my wife. You?”
“My husb—”
Her reply was cut short when the lights dimmed, and the elevator lurched to a stop.
“Fantastic,” Melanie mumbled.
The emergency lights flickered on, and Ethan pushed the alarm button before grabbing the elevator’s phone. Melanie listened intently as he barked orders to someone before slamming down the receiver.
“The entire block is in the dark,” Ethan grumbled. He removed his jacket before settling himself on the floor.
“What are you doing?”
“Getting comfortable,” Ethan said. “The guy said it might be a while.”
Melanie glanced down at her silk dress.
“I’m not sitting on this dirty floor.”
Ethan shrugged. “Suit yourself.”
Melanie eyed his jacket.
“Speaking of suits, isn’t that Armani?”
“I have no idea which expensive name is stitched on the label.”
She smirked. “But you know it’s expensive.”
“There isn’t a suit in my closet that didn’t cost a fortune. My wife insists upon it.”
“Maybe that’s because your wife has good taste.”
“Maybe that’s because my wife is too hung-up on labels.” Ethan loosened his tie and sighed tiredly. “Just sit down. I hate enclosed spaces, and you’re making me nervous.”
A stubborn Melanie remained on her feet, but the four-inch heels of her favorite boots weren’t the most comfortable, and after a few minutes, she finally relented and removed her coat. It was far less expensive than the dress, after all. She placed it on the floor before slowly sitting down.
“See? Isn’t that better?”
Melanie sighed loudly.
“One of us should probably conserve our cell battery,” Ethan suggested, pulling his phone out of his pocket. “My Blackberry has a full charge, so I don’t mind keeping mine on if you’d like to save yours.”
With a nod, Melanie reached into her bag and turned off her iPhone.
“You don’t want to text someone first?” Ethan asked. “Your husband might worry if you come home late.”
Melanie somehow resisted the urge to laugh.
“No one worries about me,” she said.
A brief look passed between them before they both quickly looked away.

Excerpt from “The Little Drummer Boy”

Rum pum pum pum.
It’s faint, but it’s there. A quiet, rhythmic beat that blends into the night. How this old man heard the sound is beyond me.
“You hear it, don’t you?”
With a nod, I look around, hoping to find the source of the sound. The man points toward the coffee shop’s covered alleyway.
“Back there,” he says.
The carolers begin their rendition of “O Holy Night,” and once again, I hear the “rum pum pum pum” coming from the darkness.
Intrigued, I step away from the old man and walk slowly toward the alley. Each step brings me closer to the beat, until finally, I see a little boy, nestled in the corner. His only light comes from a lantern, and a snare drum rests in his lap. The drum is scarred and the strap is frayed, but it’s obviously his most prized possession.
Probably his only possession.
Does he live here? In this filthy alley? And where are his parents?
“Shall I play for you?”
His voice is just a whisper. His clothes are dirty and ragged, and the faded blue jacket he wears is about three sizes too big.
“I heard you playing,” I tell him, keeping my voice soft and light. The last thing I want to do is scare the kid. “You’re very good. Are you alone?”
He nods.
“Where are your parents?”
His face contorts in pain, and my stomach lurches. He can’t be more than five years old. Maybe six.
“Shall I play for you?” he asks again. A little stronger this time. A little more determined.
Because I don’t know what else to do, I nod. The covered alleyway has thankfully kept most of the snow away, so I find a flattened section of shredded cardboard and sit down. I don’t think about the fact that I’m probably ruining my thousand-dollar suit. I just sit and listen.  
The boy’s sticks pound the head of the drum.
Rum pum pum pum.  
Rum pum pum pum.
Each rhythmic thump pierces my soul, and when he comes to the end of his song, I reach inside my jacket for my wallet.  
“No, sir,” he says softly. “I don't need your money.”
It’s hard not to laugh. The kid is surrounded by dumpsters and living in a cardboard box. If anyone needs my money, it’s this child.  
“What do you need?”
“Just food.”  
“I can pay you with food?”
The boy nods vigorously, and I notice his eyes are suddenly a little brighter. The poor guy is probably starving and could definitely use a bath. Dirt cakes his face, but he has the biggest, bluest eyes I’ve ever seen.
“Why don't you come home with me?” I hear myself say. “My wife loves to cook.”
He shakes his head. “I can't leave. My mom told me to stay here. I have to stay here.”
“How old are you?”
“I'm six, sir.”
“Do you have a name?”
“My name’s Luke.”
“Well, Luke, my name is Justin Banks, and it's cold out here. It's going to keep snowing.”
“Yes, sir,” he whispers, his voice trembling.
“I could take you home with me for a little while. You could take a bath and eat some dinner with us.”
At the mention of a bath, he smiles.
“And then we can try to find your mom and dad.”
The little boy bows his head, and when he looks up at me again, the light in his eyes is long gone.
“My mom told me to stay here.”
I close my eyes in frustration. I can talk a judge and jury into almost anything. Have I really met my match in a six-year-old living in a cardboard box?
Maybe so.
But I have a secret weapon.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Amazon best-selling author Sydney Logan holds a Master's degree in Elementary Education. She is the author of five novels - Lessons Learned, Mountain Charm, Soldier On, Once Upon a December, and Pros & Cons. Sydney has also penned several short stories and is a contributor to Chicken Soup for the Soul. 
A native of East Tennessee, Sydney enjoys playing piano and relaxing on her porch with her wonderful husband and their very spoiled cat. 
Visit her website at www.sydneylogan.com
Also connect with her online: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

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Monday, November 23, 2015

ROYAL MARRIAGE MARKET by Heather Lyons / Cover Reveal



We are absolutely thrilled to bring you the Cover Reveal for Heather Lyons’ ROYAL MARRIAGE MARKET! Releasing December 15, 2015, ROYAL MARRIAGE MARKET is a brand new standalone contemporary romance by Heather Lyons. Be sure you preorder your copy today!

    


ABOUT THE BOOK 


Every decade, the world's monarchs and their heirs secretly convene to discuss global politics and social issues - and arrange marriages between kingdoms.

Elsa may be the Hereditary Princess of Vattenguldia, but she finds the entire situation archaic and unsavory. While she wants what's best for her country, she isn't about to jump into an unwanted relationship—let alone a marriage—with a virtual stranger. Of course, her feelings matter little to her parents, whose wheeling and dealings over trade pacts and alliances achieved at her expense begin the moment they set foot in California for the Summit. So when a blindingly handsome royal runs into her, she doesn't hesitate to tell him there's no way she's marrying him.

Christian is all too happy to agree: no marriage. As the Hereditary Grand Duke of Aiboland, his main goal is to get through the summit without a bride being foisted on him. Which is why he suggests they help each other field potential intendeds. As Christian slowly gets to know Elsa, though, he realizes they have a lot more in common than just their feelings about the Royal Marriage Market. Only he can't fall for her, because royal or not, they're not meant for each other. 


Elsa and Christian will have to evaluate matters of the heart verses those of state and crown, and decide whether or not tradition trumps love.   



Read An Excerpt

“You go by Chris?”
             “It’s an acceptable nickname for Christian.” The owner of the name snatches his glass of champagne back, chugging the rest of the drink. Naturally, this promptly sets off another round of coughing.
            Parker is now the one to smack Christian’s back, and I am grateful because I most certainly do not need to be touching him again, even if in a life-saving gesture.
“Maybe so,” I murmur as Christian, rapidly turning redder from what surely must be embarrassment more than alcohol down the wrong pipe, shoves his friend’s hand away. “But it doesn’t fit.”
“If I might be so bold to ask, Your Highness, how so?” Parker inquires at the same time Christian wheezes, “What does that mean?”
            I side skirt the men to claim a chocolate covered strawberry from the dessert table. “Chris is a boring name.”
            “I believe you’ve just issued an unforgiveable insult to all the Chrises in the world,” Christian says flatly while Parker struggles to hold in his mirth.
            “Of course I haven’t. I simply said Chris is a boring name. Look at Elsa; it is a hopelessly old-fashioned name you find in old women who bake streusel. My parents aged me the moment I came out of the womb.” I point the zebra-striped berry at my sparring partner. “Now that is unforgiveable. You were given a nice name and have elected to make it boring when it doesn’t suit you one bit.”
            Too much silence expands between us; I am tricked into looking up at him once more. One of his dark eyebrows arches upward. “Are you saying you don’t find me boring?”
            Did I? Oh, bollocks. I did, didn’t I? I clear my throat and smile winsomely. “Just because I don’t wish to marry you doesn’t mean I find you boring as a bag of rocks.”
            Both of his eyebrows shoot up, as if I informed him grass is blue and sky is green. As if he doesn’t already know he’s interesting. Please. Must I remind him of all the glossies dedicated to his comings and goings?
“When we were children, His Highness was teased quite a bit about his name,” Parker tells me. 
            I toss the strawberry stem back onto the table; it’s whisked up by a passing waiter in less than a second. “What! Why?”
            “I’m named after a religion,” Christian grinds out. “There was Prince Jew. Prince Muslim. Prince Buddhist. Prince Hindu. Prince Zoroastrian. There were lots of choices, you see.”
            Another moment I want nothing more than to just laugh and laugh. “How delightful. Now, those nicknames aren’t boring. Sacrilegious, yes, but definitely not boring.”
            “You have a seed in your front teeth,” is Christian’s response.
            “You are a veritable Prince Charming, publically pointing out women’s flaws. How chivalrous of you.” 

It is annoying how much I like that he refuses to appear properly chastised.


About Heather Lyons



Heather Lyons writes epic, heartfelt love stories and has always had a thing for words. In addition to writing, she’s also been an archaeologist and a teacher. She and her husband and children live in sunny Southern California and are currently working their way through every cupcakery she can find.   
  

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Pre-Order BUILT by Jay Crownover & Receive An Exclusive Marked Men Wedding Scene


Fans of Jay Crownover's Marked Men series are in for a treat! For fans who pre-order BUILT, and submit their information HERE, they'll receive exciting bonus content from Jay featuring the wedding celebration of NASH DONOVAN & SAINT FORD!!! Pre-orders can be in any format (e-book, print, audio) and will be accepted up until on-sale day.

BUILT, (out January 5, 2016 from William Morrow) is the beginning of Jay’s Saints of Denver series, a spin-off of the bestselling and much-loved Marked Men series, and reveals the stories of all the characters readers have been clamoring to know more about. First up are Sayer Cole and Zeb Fuller in a delectable tale of opposites attracting. 


About BUILT
Sayer Cole and Zeb Fuller couldn’t be more different. She’s country club and fine-dining, he’s cell-block and sawdust. Sayer spends her days in litigation, while Zeb spends his working with his hands. She’s French silk, he’s all denim and flannel.

Zeb’s wanted the stunning blonde since the moment he laid eyes on her. It doesn’t matter how many smooth moves he makes, the reserved lawyer seems determinedly oblivious to his interest-either that or she doesn’t return it. Sayer is certain the rough, hard, hot has hell Zeb could never want someone as closed off and restrained as she is, which is a shame because something tells her he might be the guy to finally melt her icy exterior.

But just as things start to heat up, Zeb is blindsided by a life altering moment from his past. He needs Sayer’s professional help to right a wrong and to save more than himself. He can’t risk what’s at stake just because his attraction to Sayer feels all consuming. But as these opposites dig in for the fight of their lives, battling together to save a family, the steam created when fire and ice collide can no longer be ignored.

Add it to Goodreads
Pre-Order it from Amazon

Monday, November 16, 2015

Cover Reveal for INSPIRE / INFLICT by Cora Carmack!

We are absolutely thrilled to bring you the dual cover reveal for Cora Carmack’s Muse Series!


INSPIRE and INFLICT are books one and two in Cora's New Adult Paranormal Romance, Muse Series. INSPIRED was released last year, and INFLICT is due to be released in January 2016! The new covers were designed by Regina Wamba of Mae I Design. Be sure to grab your copy of INSPIRE today!


ABOUT INSPIRE (Book 1):



Kalliope lives with on purpose. To inspire.

As an immortal muse, she doesn’t have any other choice. It’s part of how she was made. Musicians, artists, actors—they use her to advance their art, and she uses them to survive. She moves from one artist to the next, never staying long enough to get attached. But all she wants is a different life— a normal one. She’s spent thousands of years living lie after lie, and now she’s ready for something real.

Sweet, sexy, and steady, Wilder Bell feels more real than anything else in her long existence. And most importantly… he’s not an artist. He doesn’t want her for her ability. But she can’t turn off the way she influences people, not even to save a man she might love. Because in small doses, she can help make something beautiful, but her ability has just as much capacity to destroy as it does to create. The longer she stays, the more obsessed Wilder will become. It’s happened before, and it never turns out well for the mortal.

Her presence may inspire genius.

But it breeds madness, too.


Purchase from: Amazon eBook | Amazon Paperback
Add INSPIRE To Goodreads 


ABOUT INFLICT (Book 2):



Wilder Bell made a dangerous bargain...
For a chance at love, he gave up his life. 

History knew Kalliope as an ancient Greek muse, but to Wilder, she was simply the woman he wanted to fall asleep with every night and wake up next to every morning. He made a deal with Hades, but the only thing the Lord of the Underworld deals in is death. Now Wilder is wasting away in a cold and wretched afterlife, waiting for Kalli to come for him. She will come. He has to believe that. Because the alternative is worse than death.

Kalliope lived her entire existence knowing that she was both a blessing and a curse to anyone she encountered. Wilder was no different. She loved him, and she got him killed. Now to get him back, she’ll have to face a scheming god, a perilous task, and death itself. But before it’s done, the Underworld will take more from her than she ever thought possible.

To be made whole, all must first be lost. 



Add INFLICT Goodreads


ABOUT CORA CARMACK


Cora Carmack is a twenty-something writer who likes to write about twenty-something characters. She’s done a multitude of things in her life– boring jobs (like working retail), fun jobs (like working in a theatre), stressful jobs (like teaching), and dream jobs (like writing). Raised in a small Texas town, she now lives in New York City and spends her time writing, traveling, and marathoning various television shows on Netflix. In her books, you can expect to find humor, heart, and a whole lot of awkward. Because let’s face it . . . awkward people need love, too. Her first book, LOSING IT, was a New York Times and USA Today bestseller.