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FOR BETTER AND FOR WORSE

TourBanner_For Better & For Worse BBT

For Better & For Worse
by Quint Emm Ellis

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GENRE: Christian Romance

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BLURB:

These ex-lovebirds are busy building a nest for one. But can she be convinced to make room for him, too?

Despite attending the same congregation and university, Ashe and Stephen’s circles had never seemed to cross.

One class project changed everything…for the better; until secrecy and youthful indiscretion pulled them apart.

Will an unexpectant reunion in their adult years allow Ashe and Stephen to rewrite a history riddled with regret and heartbreaking choices?

BookCover_for better and for worse - cropped - large 1600 x 2560

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EXCERPT

“It’s open, Dear. Come on in. We’re all in the backyard,” she heard an unfamiliar woman’s voice say over the doorbell’s integrated camera and intercom system.

“Oh,” she responded, bending down a bit to look into the camera as she resettled the pan in both hands. Unsure if the ghost that’d just occupied the device was still there, she decided to err on the side of caution and manners. “Thank you.”

Rebalancing her offering on one hand, she wrapped her free hand around the cool, metal door knob. The scent of bar-b-que, the sound of laughter and an overwhelming sense of home and comfort greeted her as she took her first steps inside the cozy home. Her shoulders relaxed as she continued to follow the sounds of something sizzling on the grill and of voices that felt both familiar and foreign.

“Ashe?”

Though Ashe paused, the hairs on her skin slowly stood on end.

That didn’t sound like Josiah or Liam. And yet, she recognized that man’s voice from somewhere. She tilted her head to one side, blinking through a fog of memory.

“Ashe,” the voice insisted.

Recognition rippled down Ashe’s spine; she knew who was standing just a few feet behind her.

And if she could have just kept walking, she would have; but her body betrayed her— turning of its own volition to meet the source.

The world became dull except for the man who carefully stood from his chair, tossing his book upon the seat’s cushion before striding toward Ashe. He stood in sharp contrast against the scenery that seemed to have become a blur. When he stopped, he was so close she could catch a faint whiff of soap intertwined with a husky, sweet aroma.

He changed colognes, came the wayward thought in Ashe’s mind.

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author image

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

“If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.”
– Toni Morrison

Quint Emm Ellis enjoys penning plots centering around unabashedly nerdy, introverted, cinnamon-roll mantic, passionate, fallible women who happen to be black, who happen to be Christian, and who happen to love an uplifting and, possibly, inspirational story.

She enjoys listening to audio books, watching movies, finding great deals and spoiling her cat and dog rotten. Her dream is to be able to walk around in loose pajama pants all day and geek out while mastering niche crafts like music production, film editing and electro etching.

Website: https://QuintEmmEllis.com
Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/quint-emm-ellis
Amazon Author Page: https://amazon.com/author/QuintEmmEllis
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/QuintEmmEllis/

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RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY

Quint Emm Ellis will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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THE ACCIDENTAL DETECTIVE SERIES

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

The Accidental Detective book 1: Something Shady at Sunshine Haven

Injured in a bombing, Kate returns to her hometown in Arizona with new scars, a limp, and pain meds that give her brain fog. For the first time in her life, she’s starting to feel her age (49), even though she’s living like a teenager again: staying with her father, trying to understand why her sister resents her so much, and running into old friends who still think of her as Kitty.

Seeing her mother in an Alzheimer’s unit is the hardest part – until an old friend asks her to investigate suspicious deaths at that nursing home. Is a self-appointed “Angel of Mercy” killing patients to end their suffering? Are family members hastening their inheritance? Is an employee extorting money and killing the witnesses? Kate uses her journalism skills to track clues, but the puzzle pieces simply won’t fit. If Kate can’t uncover the truth, her mother could be next on the killer’s list.

Kate has followed the most dangerous news stories around the world. But can she survive going home?

The Accidental Detective book 2: Something Deadly on Desert Drive

Starting over at fifty might be hard, but it shouldn’t be deadly…

Still recovering from an injury that might have permanently derailed her career as an international war correspondent, Kate Tessler is living in her childhood bedroom and pondering her second act when another case lands in her lap. Kate’s father and his coffee group are worried. Their friend Larry married a younger woman who now insists he has dementia and won’t let any of his friends visit. They’re convinced that Larry’s wife and her two adult, dead-beat kids are out to steal his money. Can Kate help?

Soon Kate and her unusual gang of sidekicks are unofficially, officially investigating. But before they can dig out the truth, a murder raises the stakes. Now they need to prove Larry is both mentally competent and not a killer. They’ll have to find the real murderer—without risking their own lives in the process.

Praise Something Deadly

“I had such a lovely day reading your story. I could barely put it down. I am still in awe of how you manage to wrangle these three generations of sleuths without every going over the top or relying on stereotypes or cliches, and of course watching Kate start to come to terms both with her disability and potential inability to ever fully heal as well as her new life, aging, being back home again and reconnecting with her family—all while solving two crimes—definite multi-tasker! The story was so engaging and quite clever.” – Sinclair Jayne, author

Read an Excerpt from Something Deadly on Desert Drive

Mayor Todd Paradise shoved his hands in the pockets of his khakis. “This councilmember is blocking me, and I suspect it’s because of the developer. Maybe he’s simply trying to make me look bad. I suspect he’ll run against me in the next election. I’d be tempted to let him have the job, except I’m afraid of the damage he’d do.”

“What exactly do you want me to do?”

Todd hesitated, his gaze searching my face. “That’s the problem. I don’t know what to say. I’m not sure it’s ethical for me to ask you to investigate a political opponent. I’m not sure it’s ethical for me to let someone get away with this, if something illegal is happening. And I can’t pay you.”

“I see.”

“Do you have any advice? That’s all I can really ask.”

The sun highlighted his hair, showing threads of gray among the brown. His eyes looked troubled, but the lines at the corners came from smiling and laughing. When he was a boy, a lot of Todd’s charm came from his enthusiasm and passion for justice, his belief we could make the world a better place. He’d now seen the challenges, the complications. He was worn down, discouraged, but still fighting.

I wanted to make sure life didn’t knock down the rest of his spirit.

About the Author:

Kris Bock writes novels of mystery, suspense, and romance, many with outdoor adventures and Southwestern landscapes. Get a free Accidental Detective short story and bonus material when you sign up for her newsletter. You’ll also get a free 30-page sweet romance set in the world of the Furrever Friends cat café and a printable copy of the recipes mentioned in the cat café novels

Kris also writes a series with her brother, scriptwriter Douglas J Eboch, who wrote the original screenplay for the movie Sweet Home Alabama. Follow the crazy antics of Melanie, Jake, and their friends a decade before the events of the movie. Sign up for our romantic comedy newsletter and get Felony Melanie Destroys the Moonshiner’s Cabin. Or find the books on Amazon US or All E-book retailers

Website
Blog
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Amazon Author Page
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Where to buy Something Shady at Sunshine Haven

Tule Publishing
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
iBooks
Kobo
Google Play
Amazon UK

Buy links for Something Deadly on Desert Drive

Amazon

Kobo

Kris Bock will be awarding Ebook copies of the first four books in the Accidental Detective Series – Something Shady at Sunshine Haven and Something Deadly on Desert Drive (out now), plus early copies of books 3 and 4, Someone Cruel in Coyote Creek (not available publicly until September 29, 2022) and Someone Missing from Malapais Mountain (not available publicly until February 28, 2023) – to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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THE FINAL CROSSING

Tour Banner_The Final Crossing

The Final Crossing: A Tale of Self-Discovery and Adventure
by Vince Santoro

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GENRE: Historical Fiction

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BLURB:

In this tale of self-discovery and adventure, we are connected with a history we’ve come to know as the cradle of civilization.

Nenshi, an Egyptian house servant, raised in nobility, is well-schooled, a master huntsman and hungers to be free. His master agrees to grant his freedom but while the petition is set to be heard, Nenshi’s indiscretion gets in the way. He is caught in a secret love affair with a woman above his social status.

As punishment, he is exiled to labour in the Nubian gold mines. His life turns upside down as he is thrust into a world for which he had been ill prepared. He escapes from the mines and vows to return to Thebes, but his attempts push him farther and farther away on a journey that redefines him – a journey mired with cruelty, bloodshed, and the discovery of a new deity.

In the end Nenshi learns his freedom has been granted and must decide whether to return to his homeland or start a new life.

“I greatly enjoyed this well written story by Vince Santoro. He takes us across the Ancient World
through the protagonist, Nenshi, an exiled Egyptian servant who struggles with class structure, both around and within himself. Santoro weaves a story of ideas – a sense of belonging, monotheism, and the human soul – told through Nenshi’s rite of passage through to his final crossing. The setting is visually evocative of “spirit of place” as the novelist and travel writer Lawrence Durrell called it. It’s a story worth reading.” – Terry Stanfill
Award winning historical fiction author of The Gift from Fortuny, Realms of Gold, The Blood Remembers and other works.

“Vince Santoro is a gifted storyteller. I found The Final Crossing difficult to put down because it is
well written. As an historian and author of non-fiction books, I am impressed with the amount of research that Santoro has done to prepare this story of adventure and romance set in the ancient Middle East. The customs, the beliefs and even the character names are all authentic to that region and era. With so many plot twists and turns, Santoro will keep you guessing about what might happen next to the protagonist until the very end!” – John Charles Corrigan
Author of The Red Night and “Love Always”

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EXCERPT

The sound of dragging footsteps along the pebbled path grew louder. The morning heat would soon turn into an inferno and drain any enthusiasm from the simplest of pleasures. But it was not enough to hamper a hunting expedition.

“Finally,” Nenshi said as he bent down to grab his bow and arrows nestled between his feet. “Must you always be late?” He looked up to the sky and squinted to get a reading of the sun’s position. “I don’t have all day. Unlike you.”

“Don’t scold me like a child. I keep forgetting,” Hordekef replied and wiped his clammy hands on his shirt.

Nenshi shook his head. “You keep forgetting you’re a free man and I am not?”

Hordekef shrugged his shoulders and turned to look down at his hunting dog. “Precisely,” he replied as he tugged at the leash to nudge the dog to come closer. It refused. “I have known you as a nobleman’s son, not a servant.”

Nenshi frowned, hated to be reminded of his status. Unlike most servants, even raised in nobility had its burdens. Hordekef gave the leash another tug. The dog still refused to budge. “Perhaps one day you will call me to celebrate your freedom rather than go hunting.”

There was silence, save for the sound of the dog’s pant.

The yearning for freedom had grown over time but the longing was not enough to set Nenshi free. Even though it was uncommon for servants to ask for their freedom, if warranted, in time, it would be granted. But Nenshi could not wait to be accorded such benevolence.

“Well … when will you ask your master to grant you your independence?” Hordekef asked. “You have told me, repeatedly, you would.”

Nenshi was reluctant to answer but felt the obligation to provide his friend with an explanation. “I have tried, several times. Something always gets in the way, his work, visits from old friends. I don’t know what else to do. He has been good to me. You know that. I don’t want to disrespect him.”

“Tehuti is aging. After he enters the underworld, you will still respect him. Unfortunately, your status will not have changed.”

Nenshi remained silent. The dead air surrounding him fell on his shoulders and caused him to be still, immobile. The heaviness could only be shaken with distraction. “Let’s go, we’re wasting time,” he said, tipping his head sideways in the direction of the wasteland.

BookCover_TheFinalCrossing

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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Vince is an Italian-born Canadian who grew up in Toronto, Canada, and now lives in Pickering, a suburb of Toronto.

In his youth, education and sports became a priority. A private boys’ school, St. Michael’s College in Toronto, provided the opportunity for both. He graduated from York University, Toronto, with a degree in history and a minor in behavioural science.

Vince was always up for new challenges. After completing his studies, he set his eyes on Europe and played professional basketball in Italy. When he returned home, he shifted gears and worked in the aerospace industry in several capacities. The most rewarding was managing internal communications for a large aircraft manufacturer. It was during this time he decided to hone his writing skills by studying journalism at Ryerson University, Toronto, and he had several articles published.

His career in communications along with studies in history and journalism prepared him to take on his next challenge: to write a book. His debut novel, The Final Crossing, has been a labour of love, one he worked on for many years. It reflects life experiences, woven into a story that inspires and entertains, and perhaps even show the world in a different way.

CONNECT WITH VINCE SANTORO

WEBSITE – Vince Santoro l Novel Writer (vsantoro.ca)

FACEBOOK – Vince Santoro | Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/VSantoro14

INSTAGRAM – Vince Santoro (@vsantoro14) • Instagram photos and videos
http://www.instagram.com/vsantoro14

TWITTER – Vince Santoro (@vsantoro14) / Twitter
http://www.twitter.com/vsantoro14

GOODREADS – Vince Santoro (Author of The Final Crossing) | Goodreads
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/22350667.Vince_Santoro

PURCHASE LINKS – The Final Crossing

AMAZON.COM – https://amazon.com/dp/0228871840

AMAZON.CA – https://amazon.ca/dp/0228871840

AMAZON KINDLE – https://amazon.com/dp/B09WJKB96S

INDIGO CHAPTERS – https://www.chapters.indigo.ca/en-ca/books/final-crossing-a-tale-of/9780228871842-item.html

BARNES & NOBLE – https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-final-crossing-vince-santoro/1141328310

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RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY

Vince Santoro will be awarding a $15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

Enter to win a $15 Amazon/BN GC – a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Author Questions

Tell us about you as a person.

I would describe myself as competitive, humble, and with a dislike for deception. Competitiveness comes from playing sports at the highest possible level that I could achieve which was professional basketball in Italy. Being competitive also taught me never to give up on my goals. Humility comes from being raised in a traditional Italian home with values such as honesty, respect, and kindness. As for deception, I don’t like it when people give false impressions or lead you to believe something that is not true. I understand that in some cases, accidental deception, someone may deceive to avoid hurting another person, but intentional deception is a different matter. In fact, my next novel (in work) deals with lying and deception.

If you could hang out with one famous person for one day, who would it be and why?

Lady Gaga. To hang out with for a day would be awesome. She’s immensely talented. The songs, the voice, the lyrics – so profound. She’s intelligent and sets goals. Hanging out with her for a day might reveal things about her that people might not know. I can keep secrets. Besides, we both come from an Italian background, so that’s a good start. Have a Campari or Prosecco and who knows, we might even collaborate on a song. I can’t sing but I can write.

What’s the story behind your latest book?

The Final Crossing tells the story of an Egyptian servant, Nenshi, who struggles with class structure, both around and within himself, often pondering what it means to be a free man. It’s a story of self-discovery and adventure, with spiritual overtones.
Nenshi builds up the courage to ask his master to free him. But as fate has it, before the petition is granted, he is caught in a secret love affair with Sia, a beautiful Egyptian freewoman. During one of their trysts, Nenshi commits a crime against Sia’s father and is consequently punished and sent to the Nubian mines to serve his sentence. He escapes and vows to return home, but events take him farther and farther away on a journey in pursuit of freedom and love. A journey that redefines him, a journey mired with cruelty, bloodshed, and the discovery of a new deity.
The story asks some philosophical questions such as what it means to be truly free, what is the human spirit, and what it means to believe in a god? It explores cities and civilizations in the ancient world. It’s a story filled with compelling moments, some clever, some with musical wordplay all told through interesting characters and twists and turns until the very end. It’s a story that entertains and perhaps make the reader see life in a different way.

What is your writing process?

It took a while to develop a writing process that worked for me. I tried a very structured approach with little flexibility. It didn’t work. I tried a “free for all” approach. That didn’t work either, too many distractions. I knew structure and discipline were important, so I sought a happy medium.

Now my writing process goes something like this.

I start the morning (after breakfast) by dealing with the business aspects of writing: check and respond to emails and social media; follow-up on marketing initiatives; work on a draft for an upcoming blog, etc. After lunch I work on my story whether it’s planning scenes, researching or actual writing.

But my routine is not set in stone. Of course, there are days that I prefer to golf instead or go out for lunch or visit friends and family. And I don’t beat myself up if a day goes by and I haven’t written a thing. I know at some point I’ll make up for it and write for hours on end. Balance is the key.

There’s no specific time of day that works best for me to write. Once I get going, I don’t stop until it’s lunch time or supper or time to go to bed. Frequent breaks are important too. Sitting in front of a computer for hours can drain you. So, going for a short walk, having a drink on the deck or a brief conversation with my wife can recharge my batteries.

The bottom line is that I set a goal to write a book and I never give up on it!

If your book was to be turned into a movie, who would play the lead role(s) and why.

The perfect actor to play Nenshi, the protagonist, is Mena Massoud. Mena was born in Egypt but grew up in Markham, Ontario, part of the Greater Toronto Area. You might remember Mena from starring in Disney’s live-action remake of Aladdin.

Mena is a seasoned actor. His knowledge of Egyptian history, culture, and the land, contribute well to the lead role in The Final Crossing, the movie, not to mention his Egyptian looks and physical presence.

What advice do you have for other writers who want to get the word out about their latest book?

Plan, plan, plan. Budget, budget, budget.

There are so many things that an author needs to consider once his book has been published. Perhaps the biggest is marketing since traditional publishers have off-loaded much of this activity to the author. Indie authors and self-published authors face the same burden. Learning as much as possible about how to market a book goes a long way. To get through the myriad of activities requires good planning. From creating an author platform to arranging a blog tour, every step must be planned in detail.

Related to this is budget. Some of the planned activities cost money. Working with an editor or hiring a web designer to create a website can be expensive. Some contests and awards have a cost for submission. Even buying books to sell at a book launch costs money. Oh yes, the launch has a cost too.

So, my advice is to budget for these well in advance of the book’s release and subsequent marketing. Plan your marketing activities so you don’t lose sight of what needs to be done. The plan and budget may not be perfect, but it will be better than flying from the seat of your pants.

List 5 things on your bucket list.

Five things? Just 5? OK.

  1. Visit Egypt. Almost made it until Covid hit. Now it’s back on the list.
  2. Go to Liverpool, England. Yes, I’m a Beatles fan.
  3. Learn to play the piano. I have one, just needs to be tuned.
  4. Re-read Tolstoy’s War and Peace. Yikes, lots of pages.
  5. Take my wife to Hawaii. I think this should be number 1.

In what way do you think that this current pandemic has changed the book & publishing industry?

Covid-19 has been devasting for everyone including businesses. The book and publishing industry was not impervious from the impact. Even with an increase of Internet sales of print books and e-books, the industry saw changes similar to what other businesses experienced. From limited in-store sales to virtual conferences to working from home, the industry was indirectly affected and even some brick-and-mortar bookstores closed their doors forever.

But I want to look at it in a positive way. The industry may come to realize that bookstores play an important role in a reader’s experience. Supporting local brick-and-mortar bookstores can help increase sales. Relying heavily on Internet sales is like putting all your eggs in one basket. Reading has become increasingly popular due to restrictions placed on recreational and entertainment activities. This bodes well for both publishers and authors. I see the book and publishing industry bounce back as it gives more attention and support to the much-needed brick-and-mortar bookstores.

RISE OF THE LAST BEAST KINGDOM

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Enslaved by a system of its own creation, humankind desperately seeks to free itself from the Beast. Lacking the knowledge, having refused the truth, all hope is gone…or is it?

Examining our history from creation to the present, this book provides insight as to why we are where we are today. Using the Hebrew Scriptures as its guide, we are taken from the cause of our plight to the ultimate ending. Although the Hebrew Scriptures are used, this is not a book supporting any major religion. There are only a few people in the world today who actually follow and obey the WORD of God – YeHoVaH. Most of the world follows man made religious practices. This book explains how this came about and how the present day systems evolved. This book provides a means for hope for the world, something surely needed now and especially in the coming days.

Read an Excerpt

Governing System

Having failed to obey our Father, we lost the chance to live with YeHoVaH under the original governing system which YeHoVaH established. We lost the opportunity to live under His governing system in which we were to trust and live with each other in love. Instead, man would set up a governing system, establishing the way we live together. Ultimately mankind would develop governing systems which did not include trusting and obeying our Creator or loving Him above all else or each other. We as His creations instead instituted a system of dominance one over another. This system which requires and is based upon the will of one person dominating that of another is what we established and how we govern ourselves instead of trusting and following the Commandments of YeHoVaH.

With the failure of humankind to trust, acknowledge and obey our Creator, we set up the human governing systems. Failing to obey the Command of YeHoVaH we failed to love each other. After being taken out of the Garden, man began the pattern of interaction which continues to this day and resulted in the formation of the current beast system in which we live. The first human being born after our creation established the pattern which enabled our current system to develop and be put in place.

About the Author:

As a child in elementary school, only attending church on Easter, the author did not feel strange when getting down on their knees and praying to GOD. Entering high school, the pull to understand GOD became greater and greater. A study of various religious books began – the Bible, Islam, eastern religions and thoughts were all examined. After reading the Hebrew Bible and particularly Isaiah 56:7 – “I will bring them to my holy mountain and make them joyful in my house of prayer; their burnt offerings and sacrifices will be accepted on my altar; for my house will be called a house of prayer for all peoples.”

The author determined that the GOD of the Hebrew Bible was in fact GOD. The author then began following the Hebrew traditions.

After earning an undergraduate degree from an Ivy League University and a law degree, the author began a successful law practice, joining the ranks of the millionaire’s club while living in Brentwood, CA near Beverly Hills. Life continued with marriage by a Rabbi and a family – until disaster hit. Business fell apart and bankruptcy left the author with nothing except faith in GOD which continued. A period of moving back and forth across the USA, 6 times in 8 years, finally resulted in settlement in the eastern USA. Upon finally deciding to stay in the east, one last trip was needed to the west by the author. During this trip, GOD brought an understanding to the author which changed everything and led to the writing of this book.

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BIG WILD LOVE ADVENTURE

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

After being ditched at the altar, Emmy Shaw’s heart, like her dented food truck, is definitely not open for business. Deeply in debt to her parents and evicted from her apartment, she takes a friend’s drunken dare and fills out an application for a new dating-adventure reality show. She never expects to be chosen—or to get a chance at the show’s huge cash prize, which could put her life back on track.

But when she’s abandoned in the middle of the jungle two months later wearing only a bathing suit and a backpack, she questions if being on the show might be even worse than the #emmytrashtruck hate brigade she left back home. Then she meets her fellow cast members—including sexy, inscrutable Wes—and starts to reconsider, wondering if maybe money’s not all she stands to gain from this experience.

After a year of abysmal failures, this summer of cave treks, jungle hikes, impromptu talent shows, and a sexy flirtmance turns out to be just the thing to help Emmy rebuild her shattered confidence. She signed up for the show to hide from the mess her life had become, but this escape from reality might be just what she needs to find herself.

Read an Excerpt

Everyone looks amazing as we wait in the field, which has been transformed into the elimination pavilion. There’s a wooden platform where we all stand, men on one side, women on the other, backed by a large wall with an enormous heart made of roses. Kip stands before us, his teeth stark white even in the dark, with a large pink trunk next to him. Off to the side is a gazebo ringed with flowers and fairy lights and boasting a large sign that reads LOVE SHACK.

The producers had already explained some of what to expect tonight, but for the sake of the viewers, Kip goes over the rules with us while the cameras roll. The longer he talks, the more jittery I get, and I know I’m not the only one. Sweat trickles down the small of my back and behind my knees, and my stomach keeps trying to claw its way up my esophagus. I’ve been here an entire week and we’ve yet to have a challenge with a cash prize, and I really don’t want to leave with nothing.

“Tonight is the first ever Big Wild Love Adventure Re-Pairing Ceremony,” Kip solemnly informs the camera. “Earlier today, the contestants secretly cast their votes about whether or not to re-pair with their current partner. If they both choose to re-pair, they’ll automatically go to the Love Shack. If one or both choose not to re-pair, they’ll remain in the dating pool.”

It finally dawns on me that the pavilion floor has been painted with high gloss blue shellac to represent water. Flames from nearby tiki torches reflect off its surface, bringing it to life. Around us, the jungle murmurs quietly, like it too, is trying to figure out just what the hell we’re all doing here.

About the Author:

Julianna Keyes is a Canadian writer who has lived on both coasts and several places in between. She’s been skydiving, bungee jumping and white water rafting, but nothing thrills—or terrifies—her as much as the blank page. She loves Chinese food, foreign languages, baseball and television, though not necessarily in that order, and writes sizzling stories with strong characters, plenty of conflict, and lots of making up.

When not helping characters fall in love, she sometimes kills them in thrillers and suspense stories written as Elaine Murphy

Twitter

http://www.facebook.com/juliannakeyesauthor

Website
Goodreads

Buy links:

Amazon

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The author will award a digital copy of the book to a randomly drawn winner.

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NO PISTOL TASTES THE SAME

Tour Banner_No Pistol Tastes the Same

No Pistol Tastes the Same
by Jacob Paul Patchen

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GENRE: Suspense (Military/PTSD)

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BLURB

JP’s pistol tastes like bourbon.

Sergeant JP Grimm didn’t pull the trigger. Now his Marine brothers are dead. All victims of a child in a suicide vest…a child that resembled Sgt. Grimm’s very own. But how are you supposed to take a child’s life? How can you kill someone that looks just like your own son?

Those same hazel eyes he saw in his scope continue to haunt him long after he left the desert death lands as he tries to reconnect with his son, Adin. JP battles another war at home against PTSD and the worthless, dejected thoughts that he is the reason his friends are dead. His wife, Lisa, struggles to let her stubborn husband work it out on his own terms. She does all she can to give him space, support, and strength—but her love can only go so far.

As the world shows signs of impending doom from a weakening magnetic field and flaring sun, JP, too, shows signs of his own impending doom. After pushing everyone away, JP must face his nightmares to restore his relationship with his son, save his marriage, and save himself before the modern world burns out in a fiery, electromagnetic disaster.

BookCover_No Pistol Tastes the Same

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EXCERPT

“You know,” he said without looking up over the creak of the swing. “I often pass by that blade and see a glimpse of the past that still quickens my breath to this day. Maybe I should’ve taken it down years ago. But it just didn’t seem right to run from the things that made me who I am.”

JP flinched and glared at the table. Those words struck a nerve. And when he finally looked up again, his grandfather was pleading with mercy in his eyes.

“JP, we can’t change the things we’ve done or seen.” His voice was gaining strength. “And it doesn’t matter one bit if we could. That’s not why we’re here. We’re here to learn from our wounds. You understand?” He cocked his head and waited.

JP didn’t know if his grandfather wanted him to answer or not. So, he slowly nodded his head as he thought about the meaning of his words. Learn from my wounds. What the hell am I supposed to learn from not protecting Joey and my brothers? What could I possibly learn from failing to do my duty?

His grandfather noticed the tremble in the corners of his grandson’s clenched jaw, the painful squint of his glistening bloodshot eyes. “Son, you’ll never grow old and wise if you don’t allow things to pass. There’s a reason behind every single thing that happens in our lives. I can promise you that.”

JP’s throat tingled. “How can there be a reason for so much pain? So much guilt?”

Grandpa nodded. “It’s good to feel the pain. That lets you know you’re still capable of feeling. And guilt? Hell, we’re all guilty of something. We’re all just the sum of the things we should’ve done or should not have done. We’re all just stocks of grain in the wind, JP. We go where we go, we bend where we bend, and if it’s our time to break, then we break. But you can’t just let yourself bleed out because you think that you deserve it.”

“I do!” JP slapped the table with his fist. “I do deserve it! Why should I be alive? Why should I be the one to come home when better men didn’t? Why? Why me?” He paused to choose his words more carefully and bring the volume down a notch. “Grandpa, why did I hesitate? Why didn’t I just pull the damn trigger like I’d done so many times before? Why wasn’t I strong enough to trust my gut and take that child’s life before he took theirs?” JP held his head in his hands and sobbed.

His grandfather grunted and coughed his way out of the swing and over to the table where he sat down. He clenched JP’s hand in his. “You feel that?” he said, squeezing as tight as he could until JP jerked his hand back in pain.

“Yeah! Yeah, I can feel it! What the hell, Grandpa?” he replied, rubbing his hand, confused.

“Good. Then you know you’re still alive. You know you still have a purpose. Don’t you dare let them die in vain,” he said with a thick finger in his face. “That’s how you get by. That’s how you get through it. You honor them by doing better…by doing all the things they can no longer do. You raise a family, you love, you give, you be kind and firm. You do good. Because doing anything less than that is like spitting on their grave. You got it?”

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Author Photo

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Jacob Paul Patchen is an award-winning author and poet of inciting fiction and provocative poetry.

Jacob earns his inspiration through experience and believes every book has a purpose. He writes powerful, emotional, and thrilling stories about mental health, war, social stigmas, and other taboo subjects in order to bring awareness, change, and hope to those who need it.

Raised in Southeast Ohio, he’s a sucker for fast workouts, long laughter, and power naps. Snacks are his love language, and he thinks he’s a Pisces. Check him out and join his newsletter at Jacobpaulpatchen.com.

SOCIAL:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/author.jacobpaulpatchen
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jacobpaulpatchen/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Jacobpaulpatchn
TikTok: @author.jacobpaulpatchen
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14189230.Jacob_Paul_Patchen
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Jacob-Paul-Patchen/e/B014MNSZZW?ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1&qid=1649205096&sr=8-1

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RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY

Jacob Paul Patchen will be awarding a free signed copy of NO PISTOL TASTES THE SAME to a randomly drawn winner (Print US only/international winners will receive a digital copy of the book) via rafflecopter during the tour.

Enter to win a signed copy of the book – a Rafflecopter giveaway

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BLOOD OF AZURE SERIES

TourBanner-Blood-of-Azure-Book-animated

Blood of Azure Series
by Jonathan J. Michael

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GENRE: Epic Fantasy

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BLURBS:

BLURB: BLOOD OF AZURE SERIES

Four races with powers dictated by the seasons seek balance and prosperity. However, life instinctively primes itself for survival, and when one race commands the touch of death, all others fall in line. Tyranny plagues Azure as an immortal ruler governs the knowledge of the seasons and those wielding its power.

Four young protagonists, Stone, Jaymes, Goose, and Astor, each navigate their way to escape his shadow and reclaim their freedom. Simple ambitions for young souls. But little did they know, they would uncover the secrets the realm is built upon, and the unique talents they each carry. Their ignorance allows the knowledge of the seasons to escape into the world around them little by little, and with it, a power loosing anarchy upon the realm. A power most aren’t worthy of wielding. It is up to Stone and his companions to tame that power and reclaim the balance.

Four seasons to balance the land. Four sages to balance the life.

Cover_Book One Season of Sacrifice

BLURB: SEASON OF SACRIFICE, BOOK 1

Courage is for the bold. It is not for Stone McLarin. He’s been in hiding for four seasons after being orphaned by the Taoiseach. He doesn’t care for the heroic antics of avenging his parent’s death or securing his freedom. He only desires one thing—to protect his sister’s life.

This proves challenging when his sister, Jaymes, possesses a rivaling power of decay to that of the tyrant ruler’s. She’s a threat to his dominance, and there will be no escaping his shadow.

When the Taoiseach manipulates his way into Jaymes’s life and steals her away, Stone has no choice but to follow. He must venture into the heart of the tyrant’s domain and figure out how to penetrate the impenetrable. And if he succeeds there, he will have to slay the most powerful man in Azure.

In a world ruled by decay, what chance does life stand?

Season of Sacrifice is part one of the Blood of Azure series—an epic fantasy full of grim encounters, heroic adventures, unique magic, and a captivating world to explore.

Author’s Note: Contains explicit language and some graphic descriptions.

Book Two Season of Suffering

BLURB: SEASON OF SUFFERING, BOOK 2

A villain in his own mind, Stone McLarin is labeled the hero for murdering a man.

Not only is Stone weighted down as a hero, but he’s idolized by the dominant religion, and he’s the sole protector of the knowledge of the ages. The pressure of the entire realm is on his shoulders.

Carib Reign, a shapeshifter building an army of immortals, plans to purge the Crimson Capital to find this hidden knowledge. His motive, to give the people of Azure the freedom they deserve.

With many adventures along the way, Stone will lead the charge to defend the Crimson Capital against the Immortal Army. Should he fail, anarchy is inevitable. Death for all Azure, a possibility.

Where there is life, death anticipates. But what if death is abandoned? Life will rebel.

Season of Suffering is part two of the Blood of Azure series—an epic fantasy with both light and dark hearts. You’ll experience many fantasy tropes, clashing swords, unique magic, fantastical beasts, and a wide range of Azure’s scenic terrain.

Author’s Note: Contains explicit language and some graphic descriptions.

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EXCERPT

EXCERPT I: SEASON OF SACRIFICE – GOOSE

My heart beats heavier. I inhale and, with the back of my hand, brush a drop of sweat that has found its way down my forehead. I know what these tracks be-long to. But why now? Am I projecting my ambitions—to slay a Creature of the Night? I grab a handful of Everweed from the ground and reluctantly head in the direction of the trampled vegetation.

My experience with these beasts is nonexistent, but then again, there isn’t another who can claim otherwise. They’re the type of animal man stays far away from, which was the primary reason for choosing this location as a refuge. We chose to risk being mauled by the Creatures of the Night over the public execution we would have inevitably encountered by hiding in a small village. Some would consider us the biggest halfwits in all of Vedora, all of Azure even, for making the decision we made, but I know Harris Martelli personally, and the fact he is capable of persuading a strong-willed and morally sound man like my father to do what he did is far more threatening than any beast living in the wood.

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Author Pic

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Jonathan J Michael was born and raised in the greater Seattle area in the scenic state of Washington. Jonathan is an advocate of science, nature, and exploration, which has a heavy influence in his debut series, Blood of Azure.

When I drive down the freeway, I often want to veer onto the backroads and head for the mountains. When I’m at an evening gathering, I’m eager to step outside and gaze at the stars. When I’m on a ferry, I’m at the guardrail staring into the depths wondering what kind of leviathans lurk below. I’m an explorer, and since I’m not on the next Crew Dragon headed for the ISS, fantasy novels let me have what I seek. I write to explore a world of wonder.
~ Jonathan

SOCIAL LINKS
Website: https://jonathanjmichael.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jonathan.j.michael.author
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jonathan_j_michael/

BUY LINKS
Season of Sacrifice – Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08T1XV54W
Season of Suffering – Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09NSM62N8

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RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY

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

Enter to win a $50 Amazon/BN GC – a Rafflecopter giveaway

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INTERVIEW WITH …

Any weird things you do when you’re alone?

I do weird things whether I’m alone or not. Weird is the new black. You ain’t cool unless you’re weird. Honestly, talking to myself is probably the weirdest thing. I’ll whine to myself. I’ll praise myself. I’ll talk in weird voices and start making up little jingles. But I only do this when I’m alone. Maybe when my kids are around too. But my intention is to rub off on them, so they have awesome weirdness, too.

What is your favorite quote and why?

“Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something.” ~Plato

I’m the silent type (except when I’m alone and talking to myself). I think this resonates with me because, when I was younger, I always wondered why some people were so talkative and had so much to say. Those who were louder seemed to be more important, and it made me feel insecure and inferior. And not that I believe every talkative person is a fool, but it gave me clarity that I don’t have to be talkative to be useful. Then, I learned what an introvert is, and that there are so many others like me. This quote has stuck with me as a reminder that I don’t have to be vocal to be useful.

Who is your favorite author and why?

Brent Weeks. Brandon Sanderson a close second.

Brent Weeks’ Night Angel Trilogy is what got me started in writing. As I was reading about Durzo Blint, a callous assassin, and his apprentice, Kylar Stern, I thought, I can do this. I want to do this. And my world building began. I was also reading Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn trilogy at the time. Another great series that inspired me because of the magic system involved. The concept of metallurgy and how different types of minerals interact with the body differently blew my mind. Both are incredible series and worthy of picking up if you haven’t already.

What, in your opinion, are the most important elements of good writing?

My answer might change depending on the year you ask me, but as of right now, I’m focused on the character arcs. The world building is exciting, and it’s why I started this journey, but the world is just a backdrop to what really matters—the characters. Figuring out what their fears are, their flaws, their passions, is all so important. It must be relatable and delivered in a fashion that allows a reader to connect and wonder what will happen next. I’m far from excelling at this, but I do treat it as a top priority and know I will create a self-proclaimed masterpiece someday.

Where did you get the idea for this book?

I knew it needed to be based in a fictional world with a magic system. That’s what I enjoyed reading, and what I wanted to write. From there, I allowed nature and science to inspire me. I took to the seasons. I live in the Pacific Northwest (the Inland Northwest to be specific) where we get to experience four identifiable seasons, and this is what inspired the magic system. The changing seasons can be beautiful and harsh. And they bring a balance to our world. Life doesn’t exist without them. We are interconnected. And my magic system was born.

Anything quantum physics related is also a huge inspiration. I don’t write sci-fi because my brain doesn’t quite wrap around the ideas, but it fills me with wonder. And I try to incorporate that wonder into the worlds I create. For example, gravity can differ from world to world. Time can differ depending on the pull of gravity. Subatomic particles can be entangled with one another. And all of this, in some fashion, can help set the physics and rules of a new world. This aspect is primarily behind the scenes and unwritten.

After the physical world was created (and constantly evolving as I came up with new ideas) I had to create the history and the culture. Being that I wanted to stick to a more balanced theme, I wanted to incorporate a collage of cultures. Admittedly, I’m not worldly, so I did my best by using hierarchal terms from several cultures, the Taoiseach being at the top (pronounced tay-shuh).

Regarding the plot and characters, I also wanted to maintain balance. Because what is light without dark? What is good without evil? So, I knew I must have heroes and anti-heroes. I knew I must have science and faith. I knew I must have extremes in all directions to express the diversity of the world.

Aside from that, the rest evolved as I began writing.

Marines Don’t Cry

TourBanner_Marines Don't Cry

Marines Don’t Cry
by Daniel Garcia and Jacqueline C. Garcia

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GENRE: Memoir, Non-fiction

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BLURB:

Have you ever been lost — really lost?

Danny and Jackie answer this question in Marines Don’t Cry with stories of death to life, deep sorrow to joy, darkness to light, and freedom in Christ.

Danny recounts his early life in Spanish Harlem and describes conversion from a life of drugs and “the fast lane” to one consumed with knowing and serving God. This makes his journey of walking more than 52 million steps on six continents for children and world peace such an incredible story.

Marines Don’t Cry is about the transformational power of God’s love: how Danny found his calling and is delivering the message of Christ at all costs.

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BookCover_Marines Don't Cry

EXCERPT

Chapter 7: “You Must Choose Now”

One night in my living room, under the influence of several drugs and alcohol, I experienced something bizarre and frightening. Something happened to me, and I knew that something was terribly wrong. In a moment, I felt my spirit leaving my body; a wrenching separation and tearing from deep within. Life literally came out of my body. My feet lifted from the floor. I levitated upwards and felt myself being pulled out of this world. It was an out-of-body experience. I did not feel physical pain, but I knew I was dying. All my life, I had been in control and never let fear consume me. Now, I was terrified.

I panicked.

My thoughts raced. I knew that if I died, I would go to hell because of all the bad things I had done in my life. I learned in Catholic school that if I died in the state of mortal sin, I was destined for hell, a place of eternal fire and torment. Eternity flashed before me, and I heard an audible voice through time, space, and spirit say:

“Which way do you choose? Life or death? You must choose now.”

The voice enveloped my thoughts. In a flash, the Lord gave me a choice of life or death, and it was a choice of both physical and spiritual proportions. Although I had not been in church for over twenty-five years, I knew I was lost, had no hope, and was going to hell. I was completely petrified, and for the first time in my entire life, I was truly afraid and frightened beyond my understanding.

With a desperate cry, I screamed, “Jesus, save me!”

As soon as I said the name “Jesus,” my spirit immediately jumped back into my body. I experienced the terrible fear of God. To this point in my life, I paid no attention to the teachings that the Catholic church instilled in me. I had turned away from Him and disobeyed His laws.

By calling on the name of Jesus Christ, I chose life. I was saved spiritually; the moment of my salvation from death and beginning the transformation to a new life. This was a miracle. I was thirty-three years old—the same age as Jesus when he started his public ministry.

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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

About the authors of Marines Don’t Cry

Daniel Garcia

Author Image

Danny Garcia, The Walking Man, was born and raised in New York’s Spanish Harlem. He served as a United States Marine, law enforcement officer, and ordained minister. Since 1996, he has prayed and walked over 52,000, 000 steps on six continents for children and world peace. During his journeys, Garcia met with dignitaries all over the world, ministering to the famous and to the poorest of the poor. Danny made presentations to Kings/royals, Presidents, and other world leaders, to include four Presidents of the USA, several Prime Ministers of other countries, the Pope, Mother Teresa, Ambassadors and various eminent personalities and multilateral organizations. Garcia began his journey as a personal commitment to peace and children and continued walking and raising funds for multiple charitable organizations.

Danny is married to the former Jacqueline Charsagua of El Paso, TX, and they work side by side to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. For more information, visit Danny’s website, http://www.globalwalk.cc.

Jackie Charsagua Garcia

Author Image 2

Jackie Charsagua Garcia is married to Daniel Garcia. She graduated from the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, CO, in 1985 and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Force. Jackie holds a Bachelor of Science in Management and a Master of Science in Human Resources Management. While in the US Air Force, Jackie specialized in communications, acquisition, systems engineering, and information technology.

After a rewarding and fulfilling Air Force career, she retired as a Lieutenant Colonel in the summer of 2006, having spent more than 21 years on active duty. Since 2006, she has supported and advised on all aspects of her husband’s walks and charitable initiatives within the United States and abroad. She joined Danny during his Africa Walk in 2007 and ministered in South Africa, Uganda, Ethiopia, and Southern Sudan. During this time, her faith and reliance on God grew tremendously under the mentorship of Danny Garcia. The Global Walk experience gave Jackie an opportunity to serve God abroad, and her vision is to spread the hope, love, and the grace of Jesus Christ through her writing. She is a native of El Paso, TX, mother of one amazing daughter, and a breast cancer survivor.

Websites:
https://marinesdontcry.com
https://www.globalwalk.cc

Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/dannygarciawalkingman/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/263639465513321
https://www.facebook.com/jackiecharsagua.garcia

Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/dannyg_walking man/
https://www.instagram.com/jackiecg_usafa85/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIBYOx4vqntVWUtW8pnefqg/videos

YouTube link of an interview with Danny and Jackie for the Veterans History Project: https://youtu.be/tiJV0RdVmis

Linked In:
https://www.linkedin.com/in/jackie-c-garcia/
https://www.linkedin.com/company/global-walk-inc/

Buy links: Marines Don’t Cry (marinesdontcry.com)

BookFunnel: https://buy.bookfunnel.com/xq67q9237u

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Marines-Dont-Cry-Delivering-Message/dp/163195640X/

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/marines-dont-cry-danny-garcia/1139454637

Books-a-Million: https://www.booksamillion.com/p/Marines-Dont-Cry/Danny-Garcia/9781631956409

BookShop: https://bookshop.org/books/marines-don-t-cry-delivering-the-message-at-all-costs/9781631956409

IndieBound: https://www.indiebound.org/book/9781631956409

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RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY

One randomly chosen winner via rafflecopter will win a $50 Amazon/BN.com gift card.
Ten randomly chosen winners via rafflecopter will win a free copy of the eBook.

Enter to win a $50 Amazon/BN GC or a copy of the book – a Rafflecopter giveaway

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