Congratulations free e-book winners of my YA Scavenger Hunt contest!

I can’t believe it’s over already! This is just a quick note to announce the winners. I’ve already sent them an email, but if you see your name here, and didn’t get an email, check your spam folder or send me a message so I can get you your free book!

And the winners are:

  • Katherine B.
  • Daisy C.
  • Jenn S.
  • Kimie D.

YA Scavenger Hunt!!!

Hi everyone, welcome to the fall YA Scavenger Hunt! I’m so excited to be a part of the purple team this year! Go Purple!

This year, I’m hosting the wonderful S.A. Larsen.

S.A. Larsen is an international award-winning author of the middle grade fantasy-adventure MOTLEY EDUCATION and the young adult contemporary-fantasy romance MARKED BEAUTY. When she’s not chasing her characters around a graveyard or antagonizing them with young love, she can be found in Maine with her husband and four children. Visit her cyber home at www.salarsenbooks.com

Check out her website and join her mailing list HERE.

She has given us a deleted scene from her award winning book, Marked Beauty.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

About Marked Beauty:

Uncovering hidden secrets can sometimes kill you . . . or worse, steal your soul.

Anastasia Tate has a secret. She can feel the emotions of others through their life energy auras. Not a welcome gift for a teenager. Especially when a sinister presence begins stalking her.

Viktor Castle also has a secret. He’s tasked with protecting humanity yet cursed by an ancient evil to destroy it.

After Viktor saves Ana’s life, her abilities grow stronger. Drawn together, she senses Viktor has answers to lifelong questions. Only he shuns her at every turn, knowing he has saved her only to put her in more danger. As Ana struggles with her attraction to Viktor, he tries everything to bury his unexpected feelings for her. But they must find a middle ground. For only together can they combat the dark forces threatening both their lives . . . and their souls.

Deleted Scene from Marked Beauty

Between his visit with the Adorers and his conversation with Anastasia, Viktor realized he was far more invested in her than just saving her life, shielding her from Callista, or using her to break his curse. He wanted all good that life could offer her. Most importantly, he wanted her alive. Ensuring her safety if something happened to him was the next plausible step. All he needed was to get her to ask.

Roxi slipped into his car. “You’re exhausted.”

Viktor stared at her fingers. “I’m not taking any of your energy and messing with my memory.”

“Look.” Kahl nudged Viktor’s shoulder from the backseat. “Sebastian.”

“Now,” Justice leaned forward from the backseat, “what could your former Rifter bro from the Dusk Court be doing here where this Ana chick lives?”

“Justice,” Kahl warned.

“No, he’s right to wonder,” Viktor said. “Even though Caspian denied any involvement with that dark energy, when I first saw Sebastian on campus I wondered if he sent him.” Viktor turned to Roxi. “Go to your room before Sebastian gets inside.”

Roxi pecked him on the cheek. “I can handle Sebastian.”

“Sis, don’t take any chances,” Kahl said.

Roxi didn’t respond, simply latched the passenger door.

“Sebastian could be working alone,” Kahl said.

That was true, but Viktor couldn’t worry about reasons just yet. He needed to secure whatever headway he’d made with Anastasia, as little as that was.

“Kahl and I will go around back in case Sebastian decides to make a quick getaway,” Justice said, and both exited the car.

Viktor shifted in his seat.

Anastasia needed stronger protection, but a personal invite was required for that. Viktor had been nudging her to ask all week, but she was a stubborn girl. Asking for his protection would serve the same purpose as if she pledged her allegiance to his League. This would obligate them to shield her from Callista and any immortal threat. Of course, he would have to eventually come clean about possessing her bloodprint.

Now, outside her room, Viktor sensed her tension. Thin pages fluttered in the air as a book lobbed across the room; his keen hearing had no trouble picking up that. She mumbled, her words breaking up. Her breathing slowed. A gush of sorrow rolled over him. Feeling her anxiety pierced his armor, the metal box entombing his heart where he’d promised never to let another visit. It would end in disaster.

Being infected by a Rifter and not dying had been hard for him. Accepting himself had been harder. Even worse had been the guilt of surviving when other Lynceus had fallen. But his father being made to watch Callista’s poison alter Viktor’s genetics while he lay dying was what haunted Viktor most.

His father had been struck first, battered body a heap on the ground, eyes blank and hollow with breaths petering from his chest. Viktor was so distracted trying to save him, he hadn’t notice Callista. Father and son watched each other—the father dying and the son coming into a new life.  

Viktor evened out his breaths. He mentally reached for Anastasia’s energy. She’d fallen asleep. He could almost feel her. Just a few more…

Birds swooped overhead in their shared netherworld. Sunlight trickled down, highlighting the tall grass that waved in the warm breeze. Anastasia teetered on her boy boots, a mere yardstick from him. Her hands fondled the edges of her jacket, her hair bunching atop her shoulders.

“You look worried,” Viktor said, realizing that bothered him more than it should.

“I’m not now that you’re here,” she said.

Did she really mean this? Would she accept him?

He gathered her hands in his and guided them to his mouth. His lips tenderly pecked at her fingers. She traced the light stubble on his face, her eyes easier on him than they should be.

“You remind me of someone,” she said. “Did I see you in a movie?”

Her innocence was adorable. “No.”

“But I keep dreaming of you.” Her cheeks flushed. “Who are you?”

She wasn’t ready for that truth. “Part of your dreamworld.”

Her eyes traveled to his lips, and he gathered all his strength to muffle the growl within him. Did she want him to kiss her? Oh God, he wanted her to.

There is was. What he wanted—her.

She had peered beyond prophesy and into his heart. She’d changed him. He’d never let anything happen to her.

Their sunlight dimmed. One of her hands slipped from his face, and space skulked between them. He reached for her waist, but a force tugged her from him. He couldn’t hold on. Her lips moved, but he heard nothing, the volume of their world muted.

Sebastian breached their backdrop, spying from the perimeter of their wooded lot. Roxi must have lost him. His energy was changing Anastasia’s dreamland. Where were Kahl and Justice?

The grass faded. The expression on Anastasia’s face ripped a hole in Viktor’s gut. Her figure blurred then dimmed, becoming transparent, until Viktor was abruptly staring at the inside of the Charger. He’d been yanked from her dream.

“No!” he roared and kicked his driver’s door open.

Roxi had been right. He was exhausted, needed time for his life force to heal. But Anastasia couldn’t be alone with Sebastian, even in her mind. Rubbing his temples with his thumbs, Viktor sent a mental message. Roxi! Find him! Kahl! Tell Justice to do some damage!

Though Roxi was a much younger Lynceus than the others and her telepathic ability was new, she was fairly good at using it. Some of their kind, like Justice, never learned to use it.

Viktor closed his eyes and pictured Anastasia—her fair skin, her soft touch, the innocence in her eyes from their private time at the bonfire. His eyes moved rapidly beneath his eyelids, and her name swirled off his lips. His aura swelled and their energies stretched, reaching for each other. He could almost touch her. Their connection was unique; they just needed to learn how to control it.

The instant Viktor was back in their dreamworld he spotted Sebastian along with the limousine they’d seen the other day.

“Get away from her!” he yelled.

Sebastian tensed and retreated, fading into nothingness, but not before he smiled.

“I’m here.” Viktor gathered Anastasia in his arms.

“You came back.” Her voice muffled against his chest.

“I’ll be here to protect you as long as you want.”

“Good,” she whispered. “That’s what I want.”

Finally, her allegiance was his. He’d broken every personal rule dreaming with her, but it had been worth it. If his absence must happen—and after their car ride, he believed that was where this was heading—Viktor’s Solstice League was now bound to care for her.

He cradled her chin in his fingers and leaned in to kiss her forehead. Though still in her dream, Viktor sensed that odd energy increasing; the weather was off, and the air was thicker.

Something was coming.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Wasn’t that a great scene? I was totally enthralled and had to keep reading, so I ordered a copy. Once a reader, always a reader.

For your next stop, check out A. G. Howard, an AMAZING author who’s written some of my favorite books! (sorry, fangirling here, but I LOVE her books).


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Once you’ve entered my giveaway, click HERE to check her out!  It’s for one of 4 electronic copies of my books, even When Darkness Falls, the same one that will be given away to the winner of the Purple team’s scavenger hunt! Good luck, and I hope you have a great hunt!

YA Fall Scavenger Hunt 2018!

Hey everyone, this October, I’m so excited to participate in the YA Scavenger Hunt! I’m on the Purple Team, and if you find my blog, you’ll find an exclusive deleted scene from When Darkness Falls, my Kindle Scout Winning YA paranormal romance.  So join the hunt, find my exclusive content, and take a look at Austen’s world, before it started to unravel. 

It’s that time of year again…

So I really haven’t updated since May? Geez. A lot has happened since then. Let’s see, I went wide, but the consensus was that I had more readers in KU who supported that, so I went back to KU. Near constant migraines got me an MRI, which revealed white matter brain lesions, probably related to the migraines, which were probably related to the stress, which is probably related to my job, so… yeah. Fun times. But I’ve gotten it under control for the most part and it’s a wait and see, at least for now unless it gets worse.

Those who know me in real life, know I have a lot of pots on the fire. I’m a teacher, a writer, a mom, and an animal rescuer. I’ve always done it on an as needed basis, but lately, the as needed basis has gotten a lot bigger, so I created a website and officially opened a parrot rescue in my area. There aren’t a lot in this area of Michigan, and the need is great. The picture is Sugar, my most recent rescue. If you want to read her emotional story, click HERE.

On to the writing news, if you’re still following, lol. I finished my first in a fun paranormal cozy mystery series and just got my edits back.  I plan on releasing that one and several more in the series next spring. I love the characters in this series, the story lines, and I can’t wait to share them with you!

A few weeks ago, I also shared that I’m just handful of reviews away from writing and releasing the next book in my Darkness Falls series. Once When Darkness Falls hits 50 reviews, I’ll write the fourth book because I know you guys love that series! So, if you haven’t left a review yet, please do! I already know what’s going to happen, and let me tell you, it’s going to be awesome!!!

In case you haven’t noticed…

The first book in my series, When Darkness Falls, has been MIA on Amazon for the last week or so. That’s because I’ve been hard at work securing my rights back from my publisher, Kindle Press, updating the manuscript to reflect some changes and republishing it. Because of the Kindle Unlimited fiasco that’s going on right now, where a lot of authors are getting their page reads stripped and accounts blocked, I’ve decided to go wide and not be exclusive to Amazon. What does that mean to you? Not much, except that my book (and soon the rest of my books) will be available on several different marketplaces and hopefully reach a wider audience. Right now it’s still in the process of being reviewed, but I’m excited, and I’m nervous, and tired (though that has nothing to do with republishing a book, it’s just life). Stay tuned for the new link, I’ll let you know what it is as soon as it’s active.

I’ve always loved the paranormal.

I’ve been on ghost hunts, to seances, had my tarot cards read, and even had aura photography done at a metaphysical event. I love secret societies and unsolved mysteries. However, one of my strangest encounters though, didn’t directly involve the paranormal. I was driving through Atoka, Oklahoma and stopped at this little antique store. (Side note: If you love antiques as much as I do, check out the little hole-in-the-wall places in the south. They’re some of the best.). While I was looking through some of their treasures, I overheard three of the people in the store talking. It went something like this:

“So, did you smell it last night?” a forty-something year old woman with bleached blonde hair asked.
“Yep, it was awful, like rotten eggs and dead skunk.” her companion, a younger woman in a cowboy hat and blue jeans said.
“You can always tell when a bigfoot’s around by the smell,” the first woman said.

It went on like that for a few minutes, with me listening in not-so-subtly, and it’s always stuck with me. I’d love to go back someday, and possibly do a real investigation. I mean, who wouldn’t want to wake up to the sweet aroma of a bigfoot in the morning?

What about you? Do you love the paranormal? Do ghost hunts make you giddy? Do you run toward things that go bump in the night? If so, let me know! I’d love to hear about your experiences with the paranormal.

One more thing, before I forget. I’m looking for a couple people who read both When Darkness Falls and What Darkness Hides who would be interested in reading Darkness Burning Brightly and letting me know what you think, before it get’s published. If you’re interested, please let me know, I’d love to hear from you!

And the winner is…

Shannon Fay! Please let me know which book you’d like and your mailing address and I’ll send it right out. Thanks again for everyone who entered. I’ll announce the winner of the Purple Team’s YA Scavenger Hunt as soon as I get that info. That’s all for now, it’s back to work for me. This book isn’t going to edit itself!

YA Scavenger Hunt Starts Now!

Hi everyone! I’m so excited to once again participate in the YA Scavenger Hunt. If you haven’t hunted before, you’re in for a treat! The YA Scavenger Hunt is where you pick a team (purple, right?) and visit all of the participating author’s websites. Each author will have a blog post dedicated to another author, in which they’ll share an author bio and some exclusive content. While you’re reading, watch for the secret number, because you’ll need to add all of those up to enter the contest.

Once you’ve got your total score, head on over to the YA Scavenger Hunt website to enter for your chance to win a free book from each of the participating authors. But wait, there’s more! Most of the authors, myself included, also offer their own giveaways, giving you the chance at even more prices. Want to learn more? Head on over to YA Scavenger Hunt for more information and to enter the contest when you’re finished.

And now, I’d like to introduce Meg Kassel, the awesome author I have the honor of hosting, and her book, Blackbird of the GallowsJust look at that cover! Isn’t it awesome!!

About her book:

Author’s note:

My YA paranormal debut novel, Black Bird of the Gallows, is told in Angie Dovage’s point of view, so this scene is a bit of the book from the perspective of her romantic interest, Reece Fernandez. Reece was such an interesting character to write (I love my paranormal boys!), but we never get in his head. This scene takes place shortly before Angie discovers Reece’s secret (that he’s a harbinger of death). I hope you enjoy!

Exclusive content:

When I’m tired, I sleep. When I’m hungry, I eat. I feel pain and heal as slowly as any human. As years pass, I age. On paper, I could be a normal boy. At first glance, I could pass for one of you. Nothing about me is normal.

I’m a harbinger of death. Food isn’t the only thing I hunger for. The other hunger is the reason I’m going out tonight. Also, because of my hot, arty neighbor, Angie Dovage. I’d love to get her off my mind. But that isn’t happening until my group and I fly out of this town. Even now, riding in a car with Cody Knox, a new friend and fellow hockey fan, I can’t get that girl out of my head.

I listen with as much patience as I can muster as Cody starts in on how he’d like to ask out Ava Chen, but is convinced she’d never say yes. She likes guys smarter than he is, he says. She doesn’t like guys who play sports. I nod at that. It’s a problem I identify with. Angie doesn’t seem the slightest bit interested in sports or the people who play them. I wish I played the bass guitar. Maybe, if I were a musician, she’d be able to overlook my…eccentricities. Not that she should. Even if we got along great, I won’t be in Cadence long enough for it to go anywhere.

My fingernails scratch at my coat’s arm seam. This ride feels like it’s taking forever.

“Hey Reece,” Cody says. “Did you leave a girlfriend in your last school?”

I shrug with a smirk and a snort. “No one girl in particular,” is my lazy reply. The truth is, there was no one at all, but of course, I think of Angie: survivor. Secret musician. Girl of the bright, sad eyes that look like they don’t trust what they see.

Girl I can’t stop thinking about.

About the author:

Meg Kassel is an author of fantasy and speculative books for young adults. She is a two-time finalist and the 2016 winner of the RWA Golden Heart© contest in YA.

 

 

 

 

Before I direct you to your next stop, please sign up for my contest below. I’ll be giving away a free copy of one of my books, your choice, even Darkness Burning Brightly, the rd book in my Darkness Falls series, which comes out May 28th!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

And now, it’s my pleasure to announce the next step on your YA Scavenger Hunt journey, the amazing Shaila Patel.

YA Scavenger Hunt!

 

It’s that time of year again! I’ll be part of the YA Scavenger Hunt on the PURPLE team! The hunt will run from April 3rd until April 8th so you’ll hopefully have plenty of time to participate.

Don’t know what the YA Scavenger Hunt is? You choose a team (c’mon, we all know you love the color purple the best, right?) but I suppose you can pick any of the colors if you want, or all of them if you want extra chances to win. Then you start at one of the author’s websites, and they’ll tell you a bit about an author they’re hosting, offer a teaser, inspiration board, playlist, etc, and then a secret number. If you go to all of the websites and add up all of the secret numbers, you can enter to win a free book from each of the participating authors. You know what’s even better? Many of the authors (myself included *cough cough*) also offer giveaways themselves, so you have a bunch of chances to win free books, book swag, and all sorts of cool prizes.  Interested in finding out more? Click on the scavenger hunt picture to the left and it’ll take you right to the website.

A little late, but Darkness Burning Brightly is coming!

I’ve finally got Darkness Burning Brightly up for pre-order,  and if you haven’t seen the cover, I’ll post it here. It’s gorgeous! It’ll be released on May 28th, so if you pre-order your copy, it’ll be delivered to your kindle as soon as it’s released. In other news, for some reason I decided to draft ANOTHER book next month with my students. I’m nuts. Like, seriously. As if I don’t have enough to do. But writing is fun, and writing with others is contagious, and exciting, and I love seeing the exhilaration on my students’ faces when they talk about their stories and ask me to share details of mine. And, it’s in a genre I’ve never written before, epic fantasy, so we’ll see how that goes. Oh, and dragons, of  course, because fantasy isn’t fantasy without dragons. But that’s about it for now, if I survive the month and writing and editing and all that fun, I’ll let you know. I can’t wait. 🙂

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