Archive for January, 2014
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Author: Jody Wallace
Publisher: Entangled Ignite
Gregori’s last mission is to save Earth from the demons threatening to take control. He doesn’t care if he survives as long as he averts the impending apocalypse—until he meets Adelita, a human refugee, whose spirit and determination give him a renewed reason to fight. And live. He’s falling for her, despite the fact he’s told her nothing but lies and there can’t possibly be a future for them.
Adelita can hardly believe the archangel Gregori, sent to save mankind, has lost his faith and his edge. After he saves her from a demon attack, she vows to help him recover both by any means necessary. But can she keep her own faith when she learns the truth about who and what Gregori really is?
What Kind of Apocalypse Was That Again? PART 2
What happens in the days after the Chosen One fails to save the world? My latest novels, ANGELI (http://amzn.to/1ffyRPL), is a sci-fi adventure romance about the apocalypse, sexy fake angels, the Earth woman who finds out they’re fake but falls for one anyway, and a planet (ours!) in dire need of some saviors.
The type of apocalypse in ANGELI fluctuates. At first, it’s a religious-type apocalypse. The alien soldiers whose mission is to stop the hordes of entities that like to eat all the life on planets often tell a planet’s residents they’re beings that mesh with that planet’s cultural mythology. They don’t want to warp the destiny of that planet any more than they must.
But then, when the heroine, Adelita, finds out the angeli are big ole fakers, the apocalypse is revealed as a sci-fi-based apocalypse where interdimensional entities who aren’t affected by Earth’s weapons are attempting to Hoover up all life on the Earth like nasty, blobby black vaccuum cleaners.
So what kinds of apocalypse novels did I scratch off my list when I got the urge to write about the end of days? I covered several of them on my blog tour stop here (insert link), so here are a few more apocalypses you won’t be reading about from me. If you’re lucky.
4) Kung Fu apocalypse. After the kung fu movie with the secret subliminal suggestions is released and viewed by nearly everyone in the world, all residents start speaking with their lips moving one way while the sound comes out a couple seconds later. This causes mass confusion and a communication breakdown. People also develop a deadly tendency to break into street fights while barefoot. Jackie Chan becomes World Dictator, aided by his second in command Chuck Norris.
5) Sharktoctopocalypse. I decided not to write this one because nobody can pronounce it, but it would have had something to do with floods, painfully bad dialogue, rubber suits, and eight armed monsters with big teeth.
Oh, and a really horrible one is the….
6) Allen apocalypse. Often misspelled as “alien” apocalypse, even though every Allen knows there’s no such thing as aliens, this horrible event occurs because everyone forgets who they are due to a mind-altering comet or something, I don’t know, but anyway, when they come to, they all think their name is Allen. This causes mass confusion, wars, fisticuffs, jealousy, love triangles with Allen, Allen and Allen, battles with wrenches (Allen wrenches of course), the rise and fall of Allen, TX, as a global power, and the destruction of the internet. Also, everyone only wants to wear polyester pants.
If you’d like to see some more of my discarded apocalypse ideas, please follow along on my ANGELI (http://amzn.to/1ffyRPL) blog tour! You can find a list of all the tour dates at: http://www.pumpupyourbook.com/2014/01/20/virtual-book-tour-pump-up-your-book-presents-angeli-virtual-book-publicity-tour/
Author, Cat Person, Amigurumist of the Apocalypse
ABOUT JODY WALLACE
Jody Wallace grew up in the South in a very rural area. She went to school a long time because there was always something new to learn and ended up with a Master’s Degree in Creative Writing. Her resume includes college English instructor, technical documents editor, market analyst, web designer, and general all around pain in the butt. She currently lives in Tennessee with her family: 1 husband, 2 kids, 2 cats. One of her many alter egos is “The Grammar Wench”, which should give you an indication of her character. She is a terrible packrat and likes to amass vintage clothing, books, Asian-inspired kitchenware, gnomes, and other items that threaten to force her family out of the house. She also likes cats. A lot.
Ms. Wallace’s approach to writing is to tell as many outlandish lies as she can get her readers to swallow. Her dream is to be moderately well-paid for this service. She is active in RWA and occasionally conducts writing workshops. Among topics she’s been known to cover are training sessions for contest judges (she coordinated her local RWA chapter contest for many years), point of view, dialogue punctuation and creativity enhancement.
I admit – I’m reading this series out of order. I’ve just finished Hungry Ghosts and have only started its predecessor, Everyone Burns. But that should be a clue. If I don’t like the dish, I don’t go back for seconds.
And I liked Hungry Ghosts. A lot.
First, it’s very, very well written. Meaning it is well-crafted and has a strong voice. So many books these days have only one or the other and those can be enjoyable, too – the way a beauty contestant can make a great date even if she’s dumb as a stone.
But Hungry Ghosts is the runway model who went to Harvard. And she knows how to have a good time to top it off – you know what I mean?
The story centers around an ex-pat Englishman named David Braddock who lives on an island off Thailand. Braddock’s got a lot going on. He’s feeling emotionally ravaged by guilt over his wife’s death, has several sometime girlfriends who want either one thing or another, an unrequited love, some Thai gangsters on his tail, and a homicidal maniac bent on revenge. All of these somehow collide at his agency (he’s a P.I. with a partner and a half: a pushy, whip-smart Thai woman and her newborn baby), even when he’s not investigating.
David is a magnetic, complex character whose flaws we forgive, and against our better judgment perhaps, whose best traits we exalt. He’s surrounded by a motley crew of friends, enemies, and anything in between. Nobody is eccentric and quirky simply for the reason of being eccentric and quirky, either. These are real people (or at least they feel real) and the author (John Dolan) writes with the voice of an experienced traveler – world weary, uncharted, but chasing the dragon of the next new adventure nonetheless. He explains a magical culture in plain, rational language instead of getting all woo-woo on us – although he does get woo-woo on us. Still, as a reader, I didn’t mind. But I’m like that.
So, go out and get Hungry Ghosts and its sibling, Everyone Burns, if you haven’t already. It’s worth your time and money and then some. And it’s a great way to feel like you’ve been to Thailand without have to get frisked at the airport and sit for twenty hours sandwiched between two nightly steak eaters from Atlanta.
Former elite operative Merit Rafi suffered during her imprisonment at the end of a devastating war, but the ultimate torment is being forced to investigate a murder she would gladly have committed herself.
The year is 3324. In the region once known as Turkey, the Rasakans have attacked the technologically superior Oku. The war is a stalemate until the Oku commander, General Zane, abruptly surrenders.
Merit, a staunch member of the Oku resistance, fights on, but she and her comrades are soon captured. An uneasy peace ensues, but the Rasakans work secretly to gain control of the prized Oku time-travel technology. When Zane is murdered, the Rasakans exert their control over Merit, the last person on Earth capable of Forensic Retrospection.
Merit, though reinstated to her old job by the despised Rasakans, knows she is only a puppet. If she refuses to travel back in time to identify Zane’s killer, her family and colleagues will pay the price. But giving in to Rasakan coercion means giving them unimaginable power. She has only three days to make this morally wrenching choice; three days to change history.
As the preliminary investigation progresses, Merit uncovers evidence of a wider plot. How did the Rasakans defeat the technologically superior Oku? Why did the Oku surrender prematurely? How did the Rasakans discover her true identity? Merit realizes she will only find the answers by learning who killed the traitor, General Zane.
In Retrospect is a good old-fashioned whodunit set in a compelling post-apocalyptic future.
Purchase your copy here:
ABOUT ELLEN LARSON
Ellen Larson’s first story appeared in Yankee Magazine in 1971. She has sold stories to AHMM (Barry Award finalist) and Big Pulp and is the author of the NJ Mysteries, The Hatch and Brood of Time and Unfold the Evil, featuring a sleuthing reporter. Her current book is In Retrospect, a dystopian mystery (Carefully crafted whodunit -PW starred). Larson lived for seventeen years in Egypt, where she developed a love of different cultures. She is editor of the Poisoned Pencil, the YA mystery imprint. These days she lives in an off-grid cabin in upstate New York, enjoying the solitude.
Visit her at http://www.inretrospectbook.com
Watch the Trailer
Pump Up Your Book and Ellen are teaming up to give you a chance to win 1 of 5 ARC’s of In Retrospect!
- By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
- Five winners will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one of five ARC copies of In Retrospect
- This giveaway begins January 14 and ends on January 31.
- Winners will be contacted via email on February 1, 2014.
- Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!
ENTER TO WIN!
WHERE WERE YOU THE DAY KENNEDY WAS SAVED?
On the 50th anniversary of the JFK assassination comes a new edition of the extraordinary time-travel thriller first published in 2003, now extensively revised and re-edited, and with a new Afterword from the authors.
On November 22, 1963, just hours after President Kennedy’s assassination, Lyndon Johnson was sworn in as President aboard Air Force One using JFK’s own Bible. Immediately afterward, the Bible disappeared. It has never been recovered. Today, its value would be beyond price.
In the year 2000, actress Cady Cuyler is recruited to return to 1963 for this Bible—while also discovering why her father disappeared in the same city, on the same tragic day. Finding frightening links between them will lead Cady to a far more perilous mission: to somehow prevent the President’s murder, with one unlikely ally: an ex-Marine named Lee Harvey Oswald.
Forward to Camelot: 50th Anniversary Edition brings together an unlikely trio: a gallant president, the young patriot who risks his own life to save him, and the woman who knows their future, who is desperate to save them both.
History CAN be altered …
Purchase your copy:
Cutting It Down to Size
By Susan Sloate
Compared to getting words down on paper in the first place, cutting what’s already there should be a snap, right? Didn’t Michelangelo say airily, “I just took a chisel and cut away everything that wasn’t David”?
Well, that sounds simple enough. You drop an extraneous phrase here, a flabby sentence there—and suddenly your manuscript is ten pages shorter and muscular. Nothing to it, right?
I hadn’t realized how much I needed to do it until I began a much-needed revision this summer on FORWARD TO CAMELOT, the 2003 time-travel thriller I co-authored with Kevin Finn. We both loved the book as originally written, but with a new edition about to be published (commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination, which is the subject of our novel), we felt it was a good time to fix some of the usage and grammar errors that had slipped by us the first time, and especially to correct a couple of small historical errors that had bothered me for ten years.
That was the intention: make sure the quotation marks face the right way, check the history and turn in the book to our publisher.
Then Kevin and I began to realize there were other issues we wanted to address. What started as a simple fix became a line-by-line scrutiny, and what we eventually found were the words, sentences and even paragraphs we could cut to bring down the length. Our publisher, Drake Valley Press, explained gently that a book as long as the original version (almost 500 printed pages) would cost so much that we might not see any profit on it at all in paperback, and it could affect eBook sales as well. But if we could significantly reduce the word count, we would do a lot better. And besides, the narrative really did have its flabby moments. Keep the story, by all means—just make it, you know, a lot shorter and simpler.
I began to feel as though I had an “Everything Must Go!” sign on my computer screen.
While I began the historical fixes, Kevin began streamlining the manuscript, pulling out sections he felt could safely be cut or linked while maintaining the pace, the plot and the flavor of the original. While we both resisted cutting entire scenes—we cut only one full scene, albeit reluctantly—there were certain scenes that we also wanted to rewrite; we hadn’t got them right in 2003 and we had another chance now.
But when I finally saw Kevin’s long, meticulous (did I mention long?) document listing all the changes—which ran about 30 pages—I almost cried. Then began the bargain-with-your-partner phone calls: “Look, we can’t cut the hunt scene at the end.”
“But it’s ten pages; that’s way too long.”
“I’ll cut it down, if I can keep the gist of it.”
“You can have the gist. Just get rid of the gristle!”
“Did you realize you write everything twice?” Kevin asked me. “If you could cut it down to one telling, we could really cut through this manuscript.” By this time the word ‘cut’ or ‘slash’ made me queasy.
We argued, and we both agreed to less than what we wanted. Kevin let me keep the plot intact; I swallowed a good deal of bile and pride and slashed away at anything that wasn’t strictly necessary.
We cut the 488-page original manuscript to 382 pages, losing 25,000 words in the process. The word count was in the ballpark, and our publisher was relieved.
Did I enjoy the process? Not losing my favorite bits, no. But I did like examining a paragraph and finding the heart of it. It’s a process writers need to go through all the time—understand what we want to say and say it as effectively—and as simply—as we can. We can never afford to forget that part of our process, especially writers who become very successful, and whose editors then mysteriously evaporate (or more likely, are intimidated or overpowered by the author at that point).
I know I’ll do the same process from now on: I’ll look for stuff I’ve said twice and hack away at it, along with everything else the reader doesn’t absolutely need to know.
And maybe that snob Michelangelo was right: when you finish slashing with your machete, what you end up with looks a lot less like a flabby ‘before’ picture and a lot more like that glistening David in marble.
That alone makes it worthwhile.
Good luck with your own machete …
SUSAN SLOATE is the author of 20 previous books, including the recent bestseller Stealing Fire and Realizing You (with Ron Doades), for which she invented a new genre: the self-help novel. The original 2003 edition of Forward to Camelot became a #6 Amazon bestseller, took honors in three literary competitions and was optioned by a Hollywood company for film production.
Susan has also written young-adult fiction and non-fiction, including the children’s biography Ray Charles: Find Another Way!, which won the silver medal in the 2007 Children’s Moonbeam Awards. Mysteries Unwrapped: The Secrets of Alcatraz led to her 2009 appearance on the TV series MysteryQuest on The History Channel. Amelia Earhart: Challenging the Skies is a perennial young-adult Amazon bestseller. She has also been a sportswriter and a screenwriter, managed two recent political campaigns and founded an author’s festival in her hometown outside Charleston, SC.
After beginning his career as a television news and sports writer-producer, KEVIN FINN moved on to screenwriting and has authored more than a dozen screenplays. He is a freelance script analyst and has worked for the prestigious American Film Institute Writer’s Workshop Program. He now produces promotional trailers, independent film projects including the 2012 documentary SETTING THE STAGE: BEHIND THE SCENES WITH THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE, and local content for Princeton Community Television.
His next novel, Banners Over Brooklyn, will be released in 2014.
For updates and more information about Forward to Camelot: 50th Anniversary Edition, please visit http://susansloate.com.
There is much written, rumored, told, and retold about Marilyn Monroe, but the most unusual and remarkable fact about her is this: In person as well in her films, she appeared to be outright luminous–enveloped by a glow, like a firefly in the dark.
Even Laurence Olivier, who costarred with Marilyn in the 1957 film The Prince and the Showgirl, saw it. Though he seemed to dislike her intensely, he had to admit that, in all her scenes, she lit up the screen.
But exquisite as it can be, luminosity can be a kind of camouflage. It can hide the truth underneath.
What exactly was Marilyn illuminating in the atmosphere that surrounded her? Her beauty was certainly stunning, dazzling–blinding, even–but what did it hide?
Marilyn, more brilliant than many understood, knew well the difference between looking upon the light and seeing beyond the glow. Men do not see me, she said. They just lay their eyes on me.
Psychoanalyst and longtime woman’s biographer Dr. Alma Bond imagines, in detail, a several-year stretch during the late 1950s and early 1960s, when Marilyn, an exceedingly fragile figure, submits to analysis on the couch of Manhattan psychoanalyst Dr. Darcy Dale and, following her return to Hollywood, corresponds with her.
Brilliantly, entertainingly, and movingly, Marilyn Monroe: On the Couch shows just what lay beneath Marilyn’s radiance. Dr. Dale, a fictional stand-in for the author, Dr. Bond, sees Marilyn Monroe as few ever have, both inside and out, and transfers those insights to readers. It’s impossible to imagine anyone providing a better, more complete, intimate, and unforgettable understanding of this truly remarkable, iconic, and even pivotal figure in film and sexual history.
Like many people, I’ve been a fan of Marilyn Monroe all my life. Not only was she a luminously beautiful icon, but she also possessed an innocent gentleness and vulnerability that comes across many of her movies and photographs in spite of her being a sex symbol. So when the author contacted me for a review, I readily agreed.
From the very first pages, I was instantly submerged. This is an usual book. It isn’t a memoir or a biography. Instead, it is a fictional account of Marilyn’s sessions with a “made-up” Manhattan psychoanalyst, Dr. Darcy Dale during the last seven years of her life. The author, Alma H. Bond, a biographer and psychoanalyst herself, brings into the book her own professional experience to make the sessions realistic and compelling.
Dr. Dale kind of stays in the background, allowing Marilyn to come fully to life, revealing a complex, sad, unbalanced, sensitive, naive and vulnerable–yet at times ruthless, egotistical, capricious and manipulative personality. Through their sessions, which mostly consist of Marilyn’s monologues, the star takes the reader on a journey from the time she was born to a schizophrenic mother, to the time she was sexually abused as a child by a foster parent, to her rise to the top and eventually her sudden suicide which shocked the world. We learn about the people who had pivotal roles in her life and career, her relationships with men, her abuse of alcohol and drugs, and her ultimately tragic, unbalanced emotions and desires.
The reader may not always like the Marilyn in this book, but I think the author has done an excellent job in portraying a complex character with both good and bad qualities. Ultimately, I think the star inspires pity, and I couldn’t help feeling sorry for her in spite of all the success she had in Hollywood. She is indeed an icon of beauty and femininity, but a tragic one at that. I have read other fictional biographies by Bond in the past and this one seems to be just as well researched. On the Couch: Inside the Mind and Life of Marilyn Monroe is one I can readily recommend.
Purchase on Amazon.
Visit the author’s website.
Posted in Christian Fiction, Spiritual, Thrillers, tagged blog tour, book spotlight, Christian Fiction, Dreamer, faith-based military thriller, Paranormal, Phillip L. Davidson, PTSD, thriller, vietnam on January 24, 2014| Leave a Comment »
Is the Dreamer good or evil? As war looms between Britain and Argentina over the barren Falkland Islands, Major David Elliott is having nightmares. Long ago, in a dark jungle near Cambodia, he failed to do his duty. That duty was to execute a member of his team. David’s weakness eventually led to his team’s capture. Tortured by the Viet Cong, they revealed the dark secrets of the CIA’s Phoenix program. Forced to leave the service in disgrace, his men now live in the ‘darkness’. What do the dreams mean for them? David’s wife, Sonia, sees them as harbingers of evil things to come. A revolutionary in Argentina before the war, she escaped to America and became a citizen.
Now, Captain Alvarez, head of the Argentine Secret Police, wants her back. He devises a plan that lures her into returning to Argentina where she is imprisoned on Los Estados Island. Meanwhile, a mystical creature has summoned David and his former team to gather once more to honor the ‘covenant,’ a pact they made with each other when they believed their lives were coming to an end. Together, with an errant priest, Father Perez, they reluctantly agree to assault Los Estados and free Sonia. As they travel across Mexico, Central and South America, they encounter the CIA, Contras in Nicaragua, the M-19 narco-terrorist group and the United States Navy; while all along being shadowed by the mystical entity. Is the entity God or Satan? Will submitting to the will of the entity allow David and his men to stand in the light of men once again? Is the Dreamer good or evil? You decide.
Dreamer is a tale of redemption, honor, courage, belief in God and betrayal! If you enjoy military fiction, this book is for you.
About the Author:
Phillip L. Davidson is an attorney who lives in Nashville, Tennessee with his wife, Karen. He is a former infantry Captain who commanded a group of Cambodian and Vietnamese Kit Carson Scouts on a night ambush team in the Mekong Delta. Phil’s life in the military has provided him with a wealth of war stories. He has used his creative insight to produce a military action adventure of epic proportions. Dreamer is a must read book. He is currently at work on a second novel.
Visit the author online at http://www.phildavidsonbooks.com/.