Extraordinary Lies by Jennifer Alsever Cover Reveal!

COVER
Hi, guys!
I’m so excited to be partnering with @bellestours and @authorjenniferalsever and share my stop on the EXTRAORDINARY LIES cover reveal tour!
Extraordinary Lies is a paranormal mystery that is told through dual POVs and captures reader from the first page. This book is available for purchase *now* on Amazon, and the link to buy it is in @bellestours’s bio.
Synopsis:
Julia and Charley may come from two completely different worlds, but they’ve been called the same names all their lives. Psycho. Liar. Witch. It’s the price of being a supernaturally gifted female in sexist, narrow-minded 1971.
Until they’re invited to join the Stanford Research Institute. There, a team of scientists is conducting experiments on people like them—people with the ability to tell the future, read minds, move objects without lifting a finger.
At first, the institute seems like a safe haven. For the first time, Julia and Charley are not alone. Surrounded by others with powers like theirs, they finally make real friends. But as the experiments become darker and more dangerous, and the test subjects’ lives are increasingly at risk, the two girls must work together to unveil the truth behind the scientists’ experiments—and the extraordinary lies they’ve been told to keep them in the dark.
Want more from this book? Check out @bookish.els tour stop tomorrow!

GIVEAWAY!

https://dwrichardsauthor.com/giveaways/3-sci-fi-novels-giveaway-free-graphic-novel-to-all-who-enter/

3 Sci-fi Novels GIVEAWAY + FREE graphic novel to all who enter

100.00 VALUE

1 WINNER

In honour of International Women’s Day Sunday March 8th, 2020:

Enter to win three sci-fi/fantasy novels with a kickass female protagonist!

Each book is a classic, must read, introduction to a fantastic series.

  1. Shards of Honor, by Lois McMaster Bujold: It’s a sci-fi love story. Two middle-aged people, caught in a war they never wanted, fighting for opposite sides.
  2. Daughter of the Empire, by Raymond E. Feist & Janny Wurts: A political fantasy, the novel is the first book in The Empire Trilogy.
  3. Basilisk Station, by David Weber: Newly commissioned captain, Honor Harrington, of the HMS Fearless, is assigned to the worst possible duty in the navy, Basilisk Station, where she ends up uncovering a nefarious plot.

PLUS, just for entering, receive a digital copy of the 144 page, full colour, graphic novel, Alexandra Forever: 2337, by D.W. Richards.

“It’s not just the dialogue that makes this book worth reading. Behind the witty conversations there’s a vast plot unravelling, and beyond that, some serious sci-fi universe building…”

~MyM Magazine, UK

Blood and Greed Volume 1 by PJ Berman

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‘Award-winning fantasy author P.J. Berman steps into new territory by bringing us four historical short stories of how the greed of some costs the blood of others, including two previously unpublished works. This is just a small work at 61 pages, but there are plans for further volumes in the future. Here are some details of the stories included:

A Bloody Day at Marathon

After his home is destroyed and his family slaughtered, Theodosius thirsts for revenge.

The Spirit of Poland

Poland stands alone – and it’s fighting for its life. A handful of brave pilots embody the country’s defiance in the face of annihilation.

Split Loyalties

Its glory days may be over, but even in the tumult that engulfs the Western Roman Empire, Sigeric and Licinia are forced to wonder, does love really conquer all, or is that the preserve of the Roman legions?

The Fate of Mari

Carrying messages throughout the city of Mari is Bashaa’s life, but under the shadow of advancing enemies, his path is about to take a turn he could never have predicted.

PLUS: Read the first chapter of Vengeance of Hope, the opening book in P.J.Berman’s award-winning ‘Silrith’ epic fantasy series!’

Pride and Prejudicial Promo Spotlight

eBookCover_P&P (2)

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single woman in possession of a law degree, significant student debt, and a crippling fear of blind dates must be in want of a husband.

False.

For Liza Bennett, finding a husband is the last thing on her mind. Unfortunately for her, it is the very first thing on her mother’s.

This time, the failed matchmaking attempt just so happens to be with the richest, most arrogant, most handsome lawyer in the country, Will Darcy. Even worse, Liza has vowed to hate Will for all of eternity.

When Liza’s plans for her father’s law firm crumble, and her family’s legacy is threatened, it is Will Darcy who steps in to save the failing firm. More than numbers are analyzed as deals are struck and feelings are thrown into the mix.

Saving the family business is complicated when her heart is part of the bottom line.

 

OUT TODAY! Get your copy on Amazon today!

The Hadley Academy Book Tour!

 

hadley

hadley 2

Excerpt from the book!:

Jack faced a wall of exposed brick. It was not the inside of the
weathered red barn he had become familiar with from other teams’
simulations. Where had the Dome sent them?
“This isn’t the farm,” Freddy said.
Team Thirteen stood in a tall passageway, empty except for a
single wooden door and a ladder that led to a hatch high in the ceil- ing. Asha held up her arms, examining the black tactical uniform

she was suddenly wearing. Voss, on the other hand, looked like a model for Versace, in a black tux. Jack caught Asha doing a double take at him while Voss examined his mirror-shined shoes.

The adaptive fabric of the three boys’ Hadley uniforms had morphed into expensive dark suits, perfectly tailored to each boy’s build. Freddy’s black curls were tamed in a way Jack hadn’t seen since picture day in sixth grade, and Jack felt his own brown locks slicked back.

Jack’s suit felt tight. Alexander, at Superior Blue’s request, had given Jack a prototype blast suit that worked exactly like the other adaptive-fabric suits. Jack wasn’t an improbable, and Superior Blue wanted him to have extra protection. Right now it was just uncomfortable.

Asha touched the monitor in her ear. “Can anyone hear us?

There’s a glitch in the simulation. We’re not on the farm.”

No response. All communication was cut off in the Dome.

Jack stared at the lone door. “I think I hear people out there. A

lot of them.”

“This must be an advanced simulation,” Asha said. “It’s probably an error. The Dome brought us in at the wrong time, after

all. Recruit simulations don’t run at night.”

“What’s the Dome doing bringing us in at all?” Voss asked, stretching his arms in the stiff suit. “Jack said it didn’t even know

we existed.”

“I said it was never going to call us in because we weren’t a team,” Jack corrected.

“So what changed?” Nobody knew.

Asha faced them. “Okay. Blades ready to deploy the instant you

see a threat.” She glanced down at herself again. “I’m clearly the odd

one out. I think I’m supposed to go up that ladder, to get a view of

whatever is out there.”

“You sure?” Voss’s gaze followed the rickety ladder to the top.

“I’m not sure, Voss! But that’s the plan, okay?”

“Yeah. All right. Just be careful.”

“Hoods up, everyone,” Asha directed. Team Thirteen took a

collective breath.

They pulled up the thin, transparent hoods from the back of their uniforms. Jack watched as their faces disappeared into shadow,

then became visible again. “It’s not working.”

“Your face is visible to your team,” Asha answered. “We’re still in shadow to everyone else.” She grabbed the first rung of the lad- der. “You go first, Voss. The shadow reaper is in there somewhere. If it’s on the other side of the door, the simulation will be over

quickly.”

Voss leaned into the door, hand on the knob. The three boys crouched together. Jack gripped the hilt of his blade as Voss mouthed

one . . . two . . . three!

They slammed into a mass of humanity. Blood rushed through Jack’s ears like whitewater, and the hilt of his Hadley blade slipped from his hand. He dropped to his knees and patted the ground among a forest of moving legs.

“Excuse me. Did you drop this?” A soft, unfamiliar accent. Female.

Jack rose slowly. Holding out the six-inch handle was an elegant older woman in a light green gown and an impossibly ornate hat. Jack took the hilt from her, wondering if this was a trap.

“I was just wondering where you got that gorgeous eyeglasses

case,” the woman said. “My husband would love one.”

Her voice was replaced by Asha in his ear. “Jack! Move!”

10 Blind Dates by Ashley Elston Excerpt!

10 BLIND DATES.jpg

10 Blind Dates (1)

The crowd at Matt’s is bigger than I expected. Today was the
last day of school before the holiday break, and it looks like
everyone is ready to celebrate. There must be a million lights
strung over his house and the bushes and trees. Really, there
are lights covering anything that stayed still too long.
Most people are in T-shirts and shorts, and even with all
of the decorations it’s hard to feel festive. Doesn’t really feel
like winter break when you’re swatting mosquitoes. Stupid
Louisiana weather.
I park my car four houses down, the closest spot I can find.

Even from this far away, I can still hear the deep thump
of bass coming from Matt’s backyard. It wouldn’t surprise me
if the neighbors call the cops within the hour. Hopefully, we’ll
be gone by then; it would be hard to explain why I was here
instead of halfway to my grandparents’ house when one of the
deputies inevitably calls my dad.
When I get to Matt’s, I spot a guy and a girl sitting in the
grass near the driveway, and they seem to be arguing. The
drama doesn’t usually get started this early. They get quiet
when they notice me and I pick up the pace, trying to give

them their privacy. Following the music, I head to the back-
yard toward the pool house. Just as I’m about to round the

house, I feel a tug on my arm.
And then I’m swallowed in a breath-crushing hug.
“I thought you weren’t coming!” Addie squeals loud enough
that several people turn our direction.

“Can you believe I talked my parents into going with-
out me?”

“I can’t! Are you staying at Nonna’s?” She sticks out her
bottom lip in a pout. “I’m still barely going to see you!”
I laugh. “Yes, you will. I have a plan. Nonna will be so busy
during the day, she won’t even miss me. I’ll head back here and
we can hang out.”
“Your parents will flip if they find out. We’ll have to hide
your car.” Addie jumps up and down. “Oh! And bring Olivia. I
haven’t seen her in forever.”

I nod, even though I doubt she’ll want to come back with
me. Olivia is one of my many cousins and the daughter of
Mom’s twin sister, Lisa. We’re only two months apart in age
and used to be super close when we were younger, but we’ve
seen less and less of each other over the last couple of years.
“Olivia is helping Nonna at the shop. I’m not sure she can get
away.”
Her eyes brighten, then she starts dragging me to the pool
house. “We’ll just have to find a way to break her out of there.”
“Have you seen Griffin?” I ask, changing the subject away
from Olivia.
“Not yet, but Danny and I just got here. Maybe he’s inside.”
She nods toward the pool house. “Want a beer?”
“Nah, I have to drive to Nonna’s soon. I’ll find a bottle of
water somewhere,” I say as we part ways. Addie heads to the
keg hidden in the shrubbery and I push through the crowd.
The music is so loud once I get inside that the first few people
I talk to can’t hear me at all.
I finally make it through the room and find a few of
Griffin’s friends.
“Sophie! What’s up!” Chris yells then tries to hug me. He’s
already down to his white undershirt and boxer shorts. I hold
my arm out to keep him at a safe distance. Chris is the guy
that always manages to get one step from naked at parties. At
the school Halloween dance, he came dressed as a cowboy,
but by the end of the night all that was left of his costume was
the pair of chaps over his boxer briefs. He got a week’s worth
of detentions for indecent exposure.
“Not much. Where’s Griffin?” I ask then turn around to
scope out the room.
Chris waves his hand behind him. “Somewhere back
there. Went looking for a beer.”

I nod then scoot around him. It’s hard to make any prog-
ress through the crowd, but I finally spot Griffin just as he

turns into the small kitchen in the back of the pool house. It
takes me a few minutes to catch up since I stumbled into the
middle of a dance circle and Josh Peters won’t let me leave
without spinning me around a few times. As I’m just about to
round the corner into the kitchen, where the music is actually
somewhat muted, I hear Griffin say, “Sophie’s on her way.”
It’s not the words that make me stop. It’s the way he says
them. Full of disappointment.
Parker, one of Griffin’s best friends, is pulling two beers
out of the refrigerator. Neither one of them notice me just
outside the door.

“I thought she was going to her sister’s house or some-
thing?” Parker asks.

Griffin’s head hangs. “She was. But not anymore.”
He’s so bummed I’m staying, like I’ve ruined his break. I
can hear it in his voice, that horrible feeling—the one where
you were so looking forward to something, like you were about
to bust out of your skin because you were so happy, only to
have it snatched away. That’s how I felt when I thought I
wouldn’t be here for the break.
And that’s how he sounds after hearing I will be here.
What is happening?
Griffin starts to turn, and I duck around the corner.
Why am I hiding? I should be storming in there, demanding
answers. But I’m frozen. I count to five and then slowly look
back into the kitchen.
“She’ll be here any minute,” he says but stays rooted in
his spot.
Parker pops open one of the beers then hands it to Griffin.
Griffin takes a long drink.
“So what’s the problem?” Parker asks. Obviously he can
hear the disappointment, too.
Griffin shrugs. “This is going to make me sound like an
asshole, but I was kind of glad she was going to be gone. You
know, like a trial run of what it would be like if we broke up.”
My heart is pounding.
“Do you want to break up with her?” Parker asks, then
takes another swig of his beer.
Griffin shrugs again. My desire to scream is almost
overwhelming.
“I think so.”
I gasp. Parker and Griffin both turn toward the door.
Parker’s eyes get big, and he looks from me to Griffin and
back to me.
There’s a split second where Griffin tries to figure out if I
heard what was said. But the expression on my face makes it
obvious that I did.
I stumble back, hitting the wall before fleeing.
I have to get out of here. I can’t look at him. I can’t be here.
“Sophie!” Griffin follows behind me, but I duck and dodge
my way toward the door. I’m afraid I won’t make it outside
before the tears start to fall. Then Addie sees my face and
barrels through the people dancing, pulling me out of the pool
house.
“What happened?” she asks once we’re on the other side
of the pool.
I crumple to the ground and tell her everything.
“That asshole,” she says. Addie turns, like she’s going to
hunt him down.
“Please help me get out of here,” I plead.
She moves back toward me. “Of course. Let’s go.”
Addie helps me off the ground and we pick our way
through the landscaping. Tears are streaming down my face
now, and I don’t even try to stop them.
My heart is crushed.
More than crushed.
Pulverized.
He wants to break up with me.
“I can’t believe him,” Addie mutters under her breath. “He’s
going to break up with you? Whatever. He’s lucky to have you!”
I don’t have the words to answer her. Not sure if I ever
will.
Just as we make it to the driveway, we see Griffin. He’s
running down the driveway, scanning the street.
“I can’t talk to him right now,” I croak out. Addie nods

and moves me into the shadows before marching out to con-
front him.

“No. Just no,” Addie says. “She doesn’t want to talk to you.”
Griffin’s face is illuminated by one of the lights anchored
to the eave of the house. He looks awful.
Guilty, yes, but there’s also sadness swimming in those
eyes.
“Please, Addie. I need to talk to her.” He squints toward
the darkness where I’m hiding. “Please, Sophie. Talk to me.
Let me explain. I didn’t mean it like that.”
I take a step back; not wanting to be near him . . . not
wanting to hear his excuses. Running behind a row of Azalea
bushes to the front yard, I trip every other step, trying to put
some distance between us.
I hope Griffin doesn’t follow me. There is a small part of
me that wants to take what I heard, twist it around until it’s
something that doesn’t crush me. But I can’t quit hearing the
disappointment in his voice. No matter what he says, he didn’t
want to see me. He didn’t want to be here with me.
By the time I make it to my car, I’m shattered. Footsteps
pound on the pavement behind me, and I brace myself.

“Sophie, please talk to me?” Griffin begs.
I’m facing the car. He’s right behind me, and I know Addie
is somewhere behind him.
My mouth tightens. “I was so excited my parents let me
stay home because all I could think was how fun it would be
to hang out with you. Just the two of us. That’s what I was
looking forward to. But you want a break. From me. Right?
Isn’t that what you were looking forward to?”
His hand lands softly on my shoulder and he says, “Turn
around and talk to me.”
I shrug him off. “Is that what you want?”
I can feel him struggling to find the words. “I don’t know
what I want, Soph. Everything is so confusing right now.
Things got so serious between us. It’s our senior year. We’re
supposed to be having fun!”
I spin around. “Well, let me make it easy for you. You want
a break? You got it. We’re done.”

He reaches for me but I dodge his grasp. He seems fran-
tic, but I can’t help but think it’s because of how this is going

down. He didn’t get his trial run first.
“Wait, Sophie. Can we talk about this? I love you. I
really do.”
His words are like a blow. I’ve waited and wanted him to
say this to me for months.
I can’t do this.
I can’t stay here.
“Please stay and talk to me,” Griffin begs. I turn and get
into my car.
Griffin finally retreats to the sidewalk as I start the engine,
and Addie runs to the window. “Let me drive you.”
I give her a weak smile. “I’m fine. I’ll call you later, okay?
I love you.”
She reaches in the window and gives me a quick hug. “I
love you, too.”
Thankfully, Griffin keeps his distance.
Within minutes, I’m on I-20 headed to Shreveport.

 

10 BLIND DATES Tour Assets

About the Book

Title: 10 BLIND DATES

Author: Ashley Elston

Pub. Date: October 1, 2019

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Formats: Hardcover, eBook, audiobook

Pages: 336

Find it: GoodreadsAmazonKindle, AudibleB&N, iBooks, Kobo, TBD

 

Sophie wants one thing for Christmas-a little freedom from her overprotective parents. So when they decide to spend Christmas in South Louisiana with her very pregnant older sister, Sophie is looking forward to some much needed private (read: make-out) time with her long-term boyfriend, Griffin. Except it turns out that Griffin wants a little freedom from their relationship.

 

Heartbroken, Sophie flees to her grandparents’ house, where the rest of her boisterous extended family is gathered for the holiday. That’s when her nonna devises a (not so) brilliant plan: Over the next ten days, Sophie will be set up on ten different blind dates by different family members. Like her sweet cousin Sara, who sets her up with a hot guy at an exclusive underground party. Or her crazy aunt Patrice, who signs Sophie up for a lead role in a living nativity. With a boy who barely reaches her shoulder. And a screaming baby.

 

When Griffin turns up unexpectedly and begs for a second chance, Sophie feels more confused than ever. Because maybe, just maybe, she’s started to have feelings for someone else . . . Someone who is definitely not available.

 

This is going to be the worst Christmas break ever . . . or is it?

 

“This piece-by-piece romance doesn’t need its Christmas theme to sell, but it makes it glitter all the more.”—Booklist

“In a funny holiday romance that has Sophie dog-sitting in a hockey rink, watching porn at a drive-in theater, and playing the Virgin Mary in a middle school Nativity, Elston cleverly reflects the family members’ personalities through their choices of dates for Sophie.”—Publishers Weekly

 

About Ashley: 

Ashley Elston is the author of several novels, including THE RULES FOR DISAPPEARING (a finalist in the Best Young Adult Novel category of the International Thriller Awards) and THIS IS OUR STORY. She graduated with a Liberal Arts degree from Louisiana State University in Shreveport. Ashley worked for many years as a wedding photographer before turning her hand to writing. Ashley lives in Louisiana with her husband and three sons. 

 

Ashley is represented by Sarah Davies at The Greenhouse Literary Agency.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads

 

Giveaway Details:

3 winners will receive a finished copy of 10 BLIND DATES, US Only.

 

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Tour Schedule:

Week One:

10/1/2019- BookHounds YAExcerpt

10/2/2019- Odd and BookishReview

10/3/2019- FictitiouswonderlandReview

10/4/2019- Here’s to Happy EndingsReview

 

Week Two:

10/7/2019- PopTheButterfly ReadsExcerpt

10/8/2019- Read. Eat. Love.Review

10/9/2019- Paper ReaderReview

10/10/2019- A Bookish DreamReview

10/11/2019- Savings in SecondsReview

 

Week Three:

10/14/2019- book briefsReview

10/15/2019- Shelf-RatedReview

10/16/2019- Smada’s Book SmackReview

10/17/2019- Do You Dog-ear?Review

10/18/2019- Wishful EndingsReview

 

Week Four:

10/21/2019- Southern Girl BookaholicReview

10/22/2019- Eli to the nthReview

10/23/2019- fictitious.fox– Review

10/24/2019-  Fire and IceReview

10/25/2019- Two points of interestReview

 

Week Five:

10/28/2019- Riddle’s ReviewsReview

10/29/2019- Jena Brown WritesReview

10/30/2019- Moonlight RendezvousReview

10/31/2019- Novel NoviceReview

 

 

Charlie Hernandez & The League of Shadows By Ryan Calejo Book Tour

CHARLIE HERNANDEZ & THE LEAGUE OF SHADOWS

charlie-hernandez-the-league-of-shadows-9781534426580_hr

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher. Thanks! All opinions are my own.

Author: Ryan Calejo

Book Series: Charlie Hernandez Book 1

Rating: 5/5

Publication Date: October 23, 2018

Recommended Age: 12+ (slight language and some scary moments, little violence)

Genre: MG fantasy

Publisher: Aladdin

Synopsis: Charlie Hernández has always been proud of his Latin American heritage. He loves the culture, the art, and especially the myths. Thanks to his abuela’s stories, Charlie possesses an almost encyclopedic knowledge of the monsters and ghouls who have spent the last five hundred years haunting the imaginations of children all across the Iberian Peninsula, as well as Central and South America. And even though his grandmother sometimes hinted that the tales might be more than mere myth, Charlie’s always been a pragmatist. Even barely out of diapers, he knew the stories were just make-believe—nothing more than intricately woven fables meant to keep little kids from misbehaving.

But when Charlie begins to experience freaky bodily manifestations—ones all too similar to those described by his grandma in his favorite legend—he is suddenly swept up in a world where the mythical beings he’s spent his entire life hearing about seem to be walking straight out of the pages of Hispanic folklore and into his life. And even stranger, they seem to know more about him than he knows about himself.

Soon, Charlie finds himself in the middle of an ancient battle between La Liga, a secret society of legendary mythological beings sworn to protect the Land of the Living, and La Mano Negra (a.k.a. the Black Hand), a cabal of evil spirits determined to rule mankind. With only the help of his lifelong crush, Violet Rey, and his grandmother’s stories to guide him, Charlie must navigate a world where monsters and brujas rule and things he couldn’t possibly imagine go bump in the night. That is, if he has any hope of discovering what’s happening to him and saving his missing parents (oh, and maybe even the world).

No pressure, muchacho.

Review: Let me start this by saying I actually wasn’t supposed to do a review for this book. I thought I selected excerpt and I was just going to present some info about it. But when I got it I thought “might as well read it” and guys… One of the best decisions of my life was picking up this book. The writing was amazing and funny. The story was expertly crafted. I loved the characters and I love how developed they were and I just fell in love with Charlie.

My only ONLY complaint is that the ending gets a bit more faster paced and I felt like two of the characters could have been a bit more developed but that’s it. I truly loved this book to pieces and I read it in a matter of 6 hours.

Verdict: I highly recommend this and I’m glad I have an arc of the second book!

CHARLIE HERNANDEZ AND THE LEAGUE OF SHADOWS Digital Assets

About the Book:

Title: CHARLIE HERNANDEZ AND THE LEAGUE OF SHADOWS (Charlie Hernández #1)

Author: Ryan Calejo

Pub. Date: October 23, 2018

Publisher: Aladdin

Formats: Hardcover, Paperback, eBook, audiobook

Pages: 330

Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Kindle, Audible, B&N, iBooks, Kobo, TBD

“This is a perfect pick for kids who love Rick Riordan’s many series, particularly for those eager for mythologies beyond Greek and Roman stories.” —Booklist (starred review)

“A winner for all kids, but it will be especially beloved by Latinx and Hispanic families.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

The Lightning Thief meets the Story Thieves series in this middle grade fantasy inspired by Hispanic folklore, legends, and myths from the Iberian Peninsula and Central and South America.
Charlie Hernández has always been proud of his Latin American heritage. He loves the culture, the art, and especially the myths. Thanks to his abuela’s stories, Charlie possesses an almost encyclopedic knowledge of the monsters and ghouls who have spent the last five hundred years haunting the imaginations of children all across the Iberian Peninsula, as well as Central and South America. And even though his grandmother sometimes hinted that the tales might be more than mere myth, Charlie’s always been a pragmatist. Even barely out of diapers, he knew the stories were just make-believe—nothing more than intricately woven fables meant to keep little kids from misbehaving.

But when Charlie begins to experience freaky bodily manifestations—ones all too similar to those described by his grandma in his favorite legend—he is suddenly swept up in a world where the mythical beings he’s spent his entire life hearing about seem to be walking straight out of the pages of Hispanic folklore and into his life. And even stranger, they seem to know more about him than he knows about himself.

Soon, Charlie finds himself in the middle of an ancient battle between La Liga, a secret society of legendary mythological beings sworn to protect the Land of the Living, and La Mano Negra (a.k.a. the Black Hand), a cabal of evil spirits determined to rule mankind. With only the help of his lifelong crush, Violet Rey, and his grandmother’s stories to guide him, Charlie must navigate a world where monsters and brujas rule and things he couldn’t possibly imagine go bump in the night. That is, if he has any hope of discovering what’s happening to him and saving his missing parents (oh, and maybe even the world).

No pressure, muchacho.

ryan-calejo-130172738

About Ryan:
Ryan Calejo was born and raised in south Florida. He graduated from the University of Miami with a BA. He’s been invited to join both the National Society of Collegiate Scholars and the Golden Key International Honour Society. He teaches swimming to elementary school students, chess to middle school students, and writing to high school students. Having been born into a family of immigrants and growing up in the so-called “Capital of Latin America,” Ryan knows the importance of diversity in our communities and is passionate about writing books that children of all ethnicities can relate to. His first novel was Charlie Hernández & the League of Shadows.

Simon & Schuster Webpage | Twitter | Goodreads

Giveaway Details:

1 winner will win a signed hardcover of CHARLIE HERNANDEZ AND THE LEAGUE OF SHADOWS, US ONLY

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Tour Schedule:

Week One:
8/19/2019- BookHounds YAInterview
8/20/2019- Savings in SecondsExcerpt
8/21/2019- Twirling Book PrincessExcerpt
8/22/2019- Country Road ReviewsReview
8/23/2019- Lifestyle Of MeReview

Week Two:
8/26/2019- RhythmicbooktrovertReview
8/27/2019- Wonder StruckReview
8/28/2019- Two Chicks on Books– Interview
8/29/2019- Aunt Addie’s BookshelfReview
8/30/2019- The Desert BibliophileReview

Week Three:
9/2/2019- The Layaway DragonReview
9/3/2019- Random Bookish Banter– Review
9/4/2019- Eli to the nthReview
9/5/2019- Novel NoviceGuest Post
9/6/2019- Fyrekatz Blog– Review

Week Four:
9/9/2019- Nicole’s Novel ReadsReview
9/10/2019- Marshmallow PuddingReview
9/11/2019- Nerdophiles– Review
9/12/2019- PopTheButterfly ReadsReview
9/13/2019- two points of interestReview

Dark Sun Rising by K.M. Martinez Excerpt!

DARK SUN RISING.jpg

Dark Sun Rising - eBook.jpg

Chapter One

The party room in Neto’s Mexican Restaurant was spilling over with customers. Waiters and waitresses bustled in the hurried, controlled manner those in the serving industry were known for. The sounds ebbed and flowed, voices competing with the Top Forty radio station that played over the speakers.

In the center of the room, at a table crowded with people, Melanie Mendez sat uncomfortably scrunched between her brothers, trying not to let the annoyance she felt seep onto her face. She wasn’t in the best of moods, having just finished a twelve-hour shift at the hospital before rushing to meet her brothers at the gym as Victor had requested. It’s my birthday, my choice, he’d said, so Mel had done as he’d asked, despite her exhaustion. It didn’t help that her brothers kept taking her leg space. Really, Victor? she thought as her older brother bumped knees with her again.

Victor and Gabe weren’t small men. Both were six feet tall, and Victor was wide, taking up the space of almost two men. Victor had a bald head, tanned face, and shifty brown eyes that never stayed in one place for long. Gabe was thin and wiry, with wild, short brown hair and a fresh young face with thick eyebrows over laughing brown eyes.

Those eyes smiled down on her now, noticing her irritation. The youngest Mendez often took it as a challenge to annoy her, as only younger brothers can do. He bumped her leg again—on purpose this time—and Mel shot him a look. Gabe responded with his impervious smile.

Mel had intended to sit at the end of the table by her uncle, Tío Jorge, a slight man of short stature with gray hair, brown eyes, and a wrinkled face creased with a smile. She looked at him now, talking serenely to a close family friend. He looked so comfortable. So relaxed. She thought about how she could be snacking on the full bowl of chips and salsa in front of him instead of pulling crumbs out of the bowl in front of Victor. Those chips had lasted all of five seconds before her brothers devoured them, and it felt like she’d finished her tacos hours ago, they’d been sitting at the table so long.

“What’s up, buttercup?” said Gabe.

“Don’t call me buttercup,” Mel replied.

“What’s up, lady bug?”

“Shut up, Gabe,” Mel whispered angrily.

Laughter bubbled from Gabe’s throat, rising over the hubbub. His eyes sparkled like brown topaz and his mouth curved in a knowing grin. “You always get so wound up this time of year. You know we got your back. Screw the other clans.”

“What are y’all talking about?” asked Victor, turning toward them.

“The Agora,” Gabe replied. “And how Mel’s stressing about being around the other clans.”

Mel made a hissing noise at Gabe, but he continued grinning.

“It’s the blowback from not competing,” Victor said to Mel. “You know that.”

“I know.” It was Mel’s choice not to compete in the Agora, but still, she shouldn’t have to put up with descendants from other clans looking down on her because of it. Having to deal with Victor’s you get what you get attitude didn’t help.

“I’m just saying—”

“I hear you. I know what you’re saying. I understand.”

“Then why complain about it?” said Victor, and Mel had to count to ten to curb the desire to throw something at his head.

“She wasn’t complaining about it,” Gabe said. “She didn’t even bring it up. I was just telling her not to worry about it because the clan is behind her.” Gabe sounded sorry for even bringing it up.

The table had quieted down a bit, and some were looking at the three of them. Thankfully their grandmother was busy chatting with a clanswoman.

“Like we have a choice,” Victor said.

“You know what, Victor?” Mel’s voice was calm, but her insides were on fire. “I know you’re pissed because your wife and kids aren’t here, but don’t take it out on me.”

That was a soft spot, Mel knew. She’d noticed her brother looking at the three empty chairs at the table that spoke to the absence of his little family. His mood had grown darker and darker as the night wore on. Mel felt bad for pushing her older brother’s buttons, but it did shut him up. He gave her and Gabe one last, hard look, then turned back to another conversation.

Mel looked accusingly at her younger brother. For once he seemed to sense he was on the verge of crossing a line with her. He laid an arm across the back of her shoulders and pulled her toward him in a half hug. Mel thought about giving him a nice shot in the jaw in front of everyone in the entire restaurant, and the thought must have shown on her face, because his touch was gone as quickly as it came.

That was usually how it was with the three of them. Two of them at each other’s throats and the third trying to play peacekeeper. But their arguments were always short-lived, and were never taken too personally. Mel knew her brothers would support her, and not just because they were obligated to.

“Mel.”

She turned her attention to the grizzled man sitting kitty-corner to her. Thomas. His gray hair was mixed with brown, and his eyes were a sparkling blue.

“That’s a nice bruise you have there,” he said. “Trained a little before dinner, did you?”

Mel put a hand to her nose. It didn’t hurt as much as it had a few hours ago.

“The birthday boy wanted to spar,” she replied with a smile that was all teeth. “Who are we to deny him his birthday wishes? Right, Gabe?”

“We do what we must,” Gabe said with a laugh, pointing at his eyebrow, where a fresh cut had crusted over.

“And we should do it again,” Mel said with a look at her older brother. “Real soon.”

“Oooh, brotha!” yelled Gabe. “Bet you wish she was sitting in front of you. At least then you could see her coming!”

“It doesn’t matter where she comes at me—or how,” Victor replied. Then with a smirk to Mel, he added, “You ain’t shit, little sister.”

“Whatever,” Mel said. “I had you on the ropes today. I would’ve finished you off if Tío Jorge hadn’t stepped in.”

Victor sputtered, but it was their uncle who replied. “Y’all were going to tear up the Kale banner!” he shouted down the table. “I wasn’t going to let you two knuckleheads destroy it.”

“That banner has survived generations,” Mel said. “It would’ve survived Victor’s meaty head. If you’d given me five more seconds, I’d’ve had him.”

“You didn’t have anything, little girl,” Victor said.

“You keep thinking that, chump,” Mel retorted.

“You all quiet down over there,” Grandma Mari called from the other side of the table. “You’re causing too much attention.”

Victor looked like a kid who’d been scolded. Mel had to bite her lip to keep from laughing. Gabe was laughing enough for the both of them.

“Don’t talk about training in public,” Grandma Mari continued.

“Grandma, we’re in a—” Gabe started, but Grandma Mari cut him off.

“Don’t tell me that we’re in a Kale friendly restaurant. Not everyone here is a clansman. Watch what you say.”

Gabe sighed and nodded.

“Okay, Grandma,” Victor said. “We’ll behave.”

He gave Mel a look like it was all her fault, but Mel just smirked, some of her good humor restored. She glanced at her grandmother, who gave them all one more disapproving look before turning away.

“You hear that, boys?” Mel said. “She wants you to zip it.”

“You too, Mel!” Gabe said.

Mel covered her mouth to keep from laughing too loud at his outrage. She really didn’t want to attract the attention of her grandmother. Even at the age of twenty-six, Mel could still be told what to do with one look from Grandma Mari. That was the power of her grandmother, Sapienti of Clan Kale, who as Elder of the clan had decades of experience bending people to her will, family above all. And isn’t that what Sapientis are known to do? Mel thought as she picked a crumb from the desolate bowl of chips.

Grandma Mari’s body was small, but she was thin and agile, and even at the age of eighty-three she could keep up with most of them. Her tanned, weathered face harbored knowing eyes—too knowing, Mel felt—under gray hair tied back neatly with a clip.

Victor was back to laughing with Thomas and a group of older men—older Kales, with stories as long as a hot summer day. Mel knew Victor was trying hard to enjoy himself despite his wife and kids being nowhere to be seen. She knew it was why he’d been so salty toward her, and she tried to keep that in mind.

She was just popping another tiny chip into her mouth, wondering when they were going to leave, when a fresh bowl was put in front of her.

“Just for you,” said the waitress with a wink and a lingering look.

“Thank you,” Mel said with surprise. She could feel herself smile—that silly smile she always managed to pull when a pretty girl gave her some attention. Although she didn’t think she was God’s gift to women, she didn’t believe she was unattractive. With dark wavy hair, bright brown eyes, bronze skin touched by the sun, and a body toned from training, she was able to grab an eye or two every now and then. But she hadn’t expected it tonight, not with her bruised face.

“Do you need anything else?” the waitress asked. She put her hand on Mel’s shoulder, and Mel couldn’t help but smile until her eyes crinkled.

Gabe snorted softly, and Mel tore her eyes away from the cute waitress. Couldn’t she even enjoy the attentions of a pretty woman without one of her brothers sticking their nose in?

“Where are my chips?” Gabe asked. He leaned back in his chair, his smile bright.

“You can share,” the waitress said.

“I don’t like to share,” said Gabe. “Especially with my sister.”

“You’re gross,” Mel said, not failing to pick up on his double entendre. She turned back to the waitress. “Don’t mind him. He doesn’t know how to act.”

“Hey!” Gabe exclaimed.

“It’s the truth,” Mel said. “You know it, I know it, everyone knows it.” To the waitress again: “He’s trouble.”

“Oh, I can see that,” said the waitress, grabbing the empty bowl. She looked down at Mel. “That’s a beautiful necklace. Look how the sun glows!”

Mel always wore a small, dainty gold chain with a pendant of a gold sun. She’d had it ever since she was a child, though usually she kept it hidden, as it always attracted attention. Now it had fallen out of her shirt, and sparkled brightly on her chest.

The waitress lifted the small gold sun in her fingertips, and just as quickly let it go. “That’s hot,” she said.

“You bet she is!” said Gabe, and Mel smacked her brother on the arm.

“Sorry,” Mel said, putting the necklace back under her shirt. “It runs a little hot because it’s always touching the skin.”

But the waitress was staring at Mel with wide eyes. “Are you o—”

“Excuse me!” Grandma Mari called. “Can I get the check please?” Her voice brooked no argument, and the waitress left to do as she’d been told.

When the check had been paid, everyone said their goodbyes and made their way out the door. All except for Mel and her brothers. Gabe had announced that they needed to have a drink to commemorate Victor’s birthday.

But as she moved to join her brothers at the bar, her grandmother caught her arm.

“Walk me out,” the older woman said.

With a nod, Mel led her grandmother out the door and down the sidewalk toward Grandma Mari’s car, where Tío Jorge was already waiting inside with the engine running.

The full warmth of the summer night touched Mel’s skin, and the smells of freshly watered grass and flowers hung in the air. Laughter came from the restaurant behind her. A part of her yearned to go back in, to try to find some of that laughter for herself.

“I didn’t really get a chance to speak to you inside,” her grandmother said. “I wanted to see how you’re doing.”

Mel smiled. “I’m okay. No need to worry.”

“Really? This year has been difficult on you, and the next few weeks will be even more so.”

“The year has been difficult for both of us,” Mel said. “And we got through it. We’ll get through the next few weeks too.”

Grandma Mari nodded. Eyes that were the same color as Mel’s own roamed the younger woman’s face, taking Mel in with one long look. The bruise on her nose from the sparring, the weariness in her eyes—a result of the stress of the last few months—the slight annoyance that Mel was trying to hide… Mel knew her grandmother saw everything.

“That tic in your eye is back,” Grandma Mari said. “It’s been tick, ticking all night long.”

“I just need to get some sleep.” What I really need is for it to be two weeks from now, and the Agora over, she thought.

“Uh-huh.” Her grandmother sounded skeptical. “Isis tells me you’ve been working too many shifts at the hospital.”

“Ahhh.” Mel smiled. “I’m going to have a talk with Isis.”

“And tell her what? To be derelict in her duties? I think she’d take offense to that.”

Isis was a doctor at the hospital Mel worked at, but was also considered First Healer of Clan Kale. She was cut from the same cloth as her grandmother, and did not suffer fools. Mel would be considered the fool in this scenario.

“Mel,” Grandma Mari continued, “I met with the Council of Elders today. They’ve heard about your leave of absence from the clan. Does that make the tic in your eye more pronounced?”

Mel’s eyes hardened. “I don’t care what the Council of Elders thinks of me, or my leave from Clan Kale.”

Grandma Mari’s eyes flashed. “Good. I don’t give a damn either. But Sapienti Kelser of Clan Moors was especially dismayed.”

Sapienti Kelser from Clan Moors can go fuck himself, Mel thought savagely.

“It was just for three months,” she said. She heard the weariness in her voice. “It’s not like I was gone several years.”

“I know,” said Grandma Mari, “but word has spread among the clans, and you need to be prepared for what you’re walking into tomorrow. You know how clanspeople judge you for not competing. Now there is talk about you not believing in The Ways.

“I believe in The Ways,” Mel said. She felt like she’d been having this argument with her grandmother all her life.

“You believe in Supervivere,” her grandmother replied, “because even you can’t argue with the value of knowing how to survive a deadly situation. But you don’t believe in Hae. You don’t believe in our histories.”

Our legends, you mean. But Mel wasn’t going to bring up old arguments. Hae—the histories of the clans—was something Mel and her grandmother would never see eye to eye on. It was the main reason why Mel had taken a leave in the first place. But if the other clans had now heard about her break from her clan and The Ways… some of them would be insufferable.

Mel could be insufferable right back.

“One wonders how our clan business reaches other clan ears,” Mel said innocently, trying to tweak her grandmother.

“Are you implying that I said something?” Grandma Mari’s gaze hardened.

“You do have a… close relationship with Sapienti Li.” said Mel with amusement. The short man from China had always been a friend of her grandmother’s. His cool, calm personality was a nice balance to her grandmother’s raging temper.

“Clan Kale and Clan Tam have always had good working relations,” her grandmother said stiffly. “But if you think I would spread clan business, then you don’t know me.”

Mel laughed. “I’m just kidding, Grandma. I know how quickly rumors can spread, and it’s not like I’ve ever hidden who I am, or what I think about The Ways. There will always be clanspeople who judge. All they see is you being the Sapienti of Clan Kale, and me being your granddaughter. And there I go again doing what I do. Disappointing you.”

“You don’t disappoint me,” Grandma Mari said firmly.

I know I don’t,” Mel said with a smile. “But they don’t know that.” She grabbed her grandmother’s hand. “They don’t know anything.”

 

DARK SUN RISING Digital Assets

About the Book:

Title: DARK SUN RISING (The Continuous War, #1)

Author: K.M. Martinez

Pub. Date: August 2, 2019

Publisher: K.M. Martinez

Formats: Paperback, eBook

Pages: 272

Find it: GoodreadsAmazon

FREE on KU!

 

Melanie Mendez of Clan Kale isn’t sure if she believes in angels, but she’s pretty sure she’s not a descendant of one.

 

Her grandmother, the Elder of Clan Kale, would beg to differ. Her brothers, Victor and Gabe, would tell her to shut up about it and just do what she’s supposed to do: fight. Specifically, they want her to follow The Ways by participating in the Agora–the annual gathering where the seven clans compete for honor.

 

But Mel has never been one for competition, and the other clans have started to take notice. When she narrowly avoids being killed by a mysterious man the night before the Agora, she can’t help but wonder if the other clans have judged her according to The Ways: as a traitor.

 

One way or another, this Agora is about to turn deadly. 
K.M.

About K.M.: 

KM Martinez lives in San Antonio, Texas. She is a fan of books, sports, and movies/television. Her first novel, Dark Sun Rising, is set to be released in August 2019.

When she’s not writing book two she is busy with work, friends, family, and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

 

Website | Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | Goodreads | Amazon Author Page | Bookbub

 

Giveaway Details:

 

3 winners will win an eBook of DARK SUN RISING, INTERNATIONAL.

 

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Tour Schedule:

Week One:

8/19/2019- Dorky Girl and SkeletorExcerpt

8/19/2019- WonderstruckSpotlight

 

8/20/2019- Smada’s Book SmackSpotlight

8/20/2019- Country Road ReviewsExcerpt

 

8/21/2019- Book Sniffers Anonymous– Excerpt

8/21/2019- Jaime’s WorldExcerpt

 

8/22/2019- ParajunkeeExcerpt

8/22/2019- ColorimetryExcerpt

 

8/23/2019- PopTheButterfly ReadsExcerpt

8/23/2019- Owl Always Be ReadingExcerpt

 

Week Two:

8/26/2019- BookHoundsInterview

8/26/2019- Book BriefsReview

 

8/27/2019- Cindy’s Love of BooksReview

8/27/2019- Two Chicks on Books Interview

 

8/28/2019- Good Choice ReadingExcerpt

8/28/2019- Simply Daniel Radcliffe– Review

 

8/29/2019- JypsylynnReview

8/29/2019- Daily WaffleSpotlight
8/30/2019- the suburban lifestyleReview