22 October, 2020

#GuestPost - How Real Are My Characters? by @NancyLiPetri #Author of Lake to Coast Series




About the Book:

Nancy LiPetri now writes in south Florida, after living on Lake Norman, North Carolina, for fourteen years. A fan of realistic fiction that lets you experience a destination along with relationship drama, she wrote her first novel, The Wooded Path, to share the town of Mooresville on Lake Norman, its culture, seasons and lake life as realistic neighbors react in different ways to a tragedy.
Her writing brings the Carolinas to life with familiar names and facts and she also shares her photography from the area on a Lake Norman Board.
Her stories also reveal fascination with psychology and the power of the subconscious. Her characters find themselves struggling with dark thoughts, confusion and temptations. What will they dare to share and act upon? Common themes to The Wooded Path and Across the Lake are infidelity, mortality, morality, and love of all kinds. Content is adult; romance may get steamy yet not graphic. Nancy’s writing has been called vivid, unflinching, realistic and relatable.
She hopes her various characters will reassure readers they are not alone in their secret dilemmas. Readers are bound to recognize a bit of themselves or a friend in the cast of characters. Above all, her stories are intended to entertain with short chapters that keep you flipping pages.
When she’s not at her desk writing with the help of her two cats, and when not having to “social distance” you’ll find her at the beach (often with camera), practicing yoga with neighbor pals and working on her game with the pickleball club (she and hubby play some mean mixed doubles). She also enjoys connecting with fellow wildlife enthusiasts, friends, and readers on social media. Stop by her Facebook and say Hi.  

Nancy on the Web:
Website * Facebook * Pinterest * Instagram * Twitter * Goodreads * Amazon



How Real Are My Characters?


Readers often ask which characters in my books are real. I admit, as a reader I do it too—I find myself guessing which of other authors’ characters are like the writer or someone they know. However, unless the story is called a memoir, most writers of fiction are careful not to make any one character too much like a real person.

I do like to pull traits from real people into each of my characters just to get them started, and then I let the dynamics of the tale grow the fictional person into a unique being. The real person doesn’t even have to be anyone I know well, could be simply someone I observed in a store or some other public place (Laine was inspired by a woman at my old fitness club). With my first novel involving a bunco group, it was natural that my real-life bunco pals would look for themselves in the story. Even though one drove a boat and mixed drinks, another took photos for the group...none had more than a trait or two that wasn’t pure imagination. And as characters develop later in the first novel or in some cases, in other books in the series, their dramas are a result of their purely fictional world.

One reason I like to write is to show others they aren’t alone in their personal thoughts and dilemmas. My characters are often more daring than we are in polite life, daring to share about sex or guilt or whatever you might keep to yourself. I let my characters reveal different perspectives (although I don’t let them bring up politics). I try to capture that people are not usually black-and-white and shouldn’t be judged on a first impression, that we’re all multi-faceted and thus more interesting than stereotypes. I might introduce a character as the way she or he is first perceived by another character, then peel back the layers through the story.

An author friend recently posted that he honored a friend who has passed, in a character who is a doctor in his novel. Another honors her grandson in fictional context. I too have honored real people in my stories, but it doesn’t mean any one character is a particular person. In fact, I enjoyed immortalizing some of my own late parents in tidbits, and Book Two holds special meaning for me because there’s some of my late son in a landscaper/musician’s callused hands...what was said about blues guitar...a humorous quote here and there...

So remember, just because someone drives a boat or plays guitar like the real person did, or is a copywriter who lived on Lake Norman, doesn’t mean the character has anything more in common with real life. Also, just because a character says or does something you wonder if you once told me, ask yourself if it’s possible I know anyone else who could say or do it. Most of us really aren’t as unique as we think we are.

All that said, if I turn to you and say, usually amid much laughter, “You KNOW that’s gotta go into a story!” then that’s how you end up with a true personal connection to a character.

And now I have a Florida friend who keeps telling me, “Hey I’m available for a cameo in Book Three!” Be careful what you wish for.  


About the Book:

In this sequel to The Wooded Path, the character you least expect to return is back, experiencing lake life a whole new way. She’s pushing boundaries. Not worried about fitting in.
And she can’t believe what she discovers.
The second book in the Lake To Coast Series, the story can be enjoyed as a stand-alone, but readers of the first book will find extra fun in the dynamics between the old and new protagonists, comparing the neighborhood styles on opposite sides of the lake, and in knowing more about the backgrounds of other characters that are further developed.
Across the Lake reveals more secrets in the close-knit community on Lake Norman and also takes readers through Spanish moss and salt spray to the famed Outer Banks of North Carolina. Romantic tensions get steamier and relationship complexities come to light on a “what happens here, stays here” getaway.
Meanwhile, a scandal continues to simmer, begging to be sorted out...but at what cost?
Will Kat find what she’s looking for on Lake Norman or on Ocracoke Island?

Book Links:
Goodreads * Amazon






21 October, 2020

Read an #Excerpt from Dare by Rowdy Rooksy - @XpressoTours #Contemporary #YoungAdult

Dare
Rowdy Rooksy

(A Bradford Academy Novel)
Publication date: August 1st 2020
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult

Welcome to Bradford Academy where power and elite are bred, wealthy bloodlines bond, and a risky game of Dare can make or break your family legacy. Fallon Gamble used to believe that life was simple until she found herself in the hall of Bradford Academy. At Bradford, the only thing that matters is your family legacy and what you’re willing to do to preserve it. Fallon used to live a simple life but things are different now. Now, Fallon’s caught in the viper’s den with a power hungry egomaniac out to destroy her, a dangerous secret that’s eating her alive and she’s torn between three of the hottest, wealthiest boys on campus.


Goodreads / Amazon



EXCERPT:

“Bradford Academy is the Harvard and Yale of boarding schools. Your family has to not only be extremely wealthy but they have to have certain connections. There’s a hierarchy within the elite and that same hierarchy applies here at Bradford. The kids at the top of the food chain come from the wealthiest families and are what we call pure bloods.”

“Pure bloods?” I say with a frown.

“Yeah, it means that your family wealth goes back many generations so you’re born into wealth. It’s the only life you’ve ever known.”

“Are you a pure blood?” I ask.

“Yep” she nods.

“But I’m not,” I say.

“No, you’re not but you’re a Gamble and that trumps everything.”

“Why?” I ask. This is some secret illuminati shit she’s talking and it’s blowing my mind right now.

“Because the Gambles not only have wealth, they also have political power. The Gambles ran the inner circle for years then they lost their heir when your father died. No heir, no power. So, for a long time the Gambles had to yield to the Barringers but then you came along and even though you’re not a pure blood, you’re the future of the Gamble dynasty so the rules were changed to accommodate your existence and not everybody’s on board with that.”

“And by everybody you mean Bexley,” I say.

She nods. “Next to the Gambles, the Barringers are it. That family is worth sixty-six billion dollars and with the Gambles out of the way the Barringers took over the inner circle. And here at Bradford, there was no Gamble legacy so Bexley Barringer became the It pure blood around here.”

“So, what about the others? How do they fit in?” I ask.

“So, here at Bradford the Barringers have been at the top of the hierarchy for a long time. At least since the last Gamble heir went here.”

“My father,” I say.

“Right, but that was a very long time ago. So, it’s been the Barringers ruling this place. That family owns one of the largest fashion and retail chains in the country. After the Barringers you have the Davenports who make their money in oil. They’re worth about forty billion. Then you have the Nadars,” she says point to herself. “My grandfather is a billionaire industrialist and philanthropist. We’re worth thirty-eight billion. Then there’s the Amhersts who own the largest energy infrastructure firm in the country. They’re worth about thirty-six billion. Next you have the Radcliffes who are cousins of the Barringers.”

My eyebrows go up in shock. “Bexley and Harlyn are related?”

“Yeah, they’re cousins but they’re nothing alike. So anyway, the Radcliffes are worth like thirty-five billion, then there’s the twins Indigo and Tatum James who are the offspring of Hollywood actor Quincy James and billionaire heiress, Leyla Motsepe James. Leyla’s family is the real power in that union. The Motsepe’s family made their fortune in gold, metal and platinum. They’re worth like thirty billion. Then there’s the Caldwells and the Norths. They’re not as wealthy as the rest of us. Their net worth is in the high millions but they’re legacies. Lucca’s the son of legendary NFL running back, Darren Caldwell. After daddy Caldwell retired he partnered with the Amherst family in some lucrative deals putting the Caldwells in the inner circle. As for the North’s, their worth about five hundred million but they’re deep into politics so they have an in with the government which makes them very valuable.”

“So, let me see if I got this right. The hierarchy here is Bexley Barringer, Alisander Davenport, You, Zade Amherst, Harlyn Radcliffe, the twins, Indigo and Tatum, then Lucca Caldwell and Chloe North.”

“You got it except…”

“Except what?” I say, leaning in.

“Except now that you’re here, technically you’re at the top of the hierarchy,” she says with sly grin.

“Me? Yeah, right?”

“I know you don’t realize it yet but you will eventually. Again, you just need to learn how things work.”

“It’s all so complicated. Why can’t we just be teenagers?” I wine.

“We are teenagers. Our bank accounts are just bigger and normal teenager rules don’t apply to us,” Devya says with a smirk.

Author Bio:

RowdyRooksy aka Rowdy fell in love with writing in junior high when she was given an assignment to read the poem Death Be Not Proud by John Donne and to write a sonnet in that similar style. She wrote the poem and hasn't stopped writing since. She has several notebooks filled with poems and short stories and she finally decided to put some of her short stories into a novella which became her first published book, Turned Out.

Rowdy loves a range of genres from Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Contemporary Romance, Erotica to Young Adult. She can talk all day about aliens, ghosts and the afterlife and can get lost for hours in meditation. She hates peas but chocolate is her jam!

Rowdy loves to hang out on Instagram. Hit her up @authorrowdyrooksy.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram


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Read an #Excerpt from Everywhere to Hide by Siri Mitchell - @partnersincr1me #Suspense

Everywhere to Hide

by Siri Mitchell

on Tour October 1-31, 2020

Synopsis:

Everywhere to Hide by Siri Mitchell

How can she protect herself from an enemy she can’t see?

Law school graduate Whitney Garrison is a survivor. She admirably deals with an abusive boyfriend, her mother’s death, mounting student debt, dwindling job opportunities, and a rare neurological condition that prevents her from recognizing human faces.

But witnessing a murder might be the crisis she can’t overcome.

The killer has every advantage. Though Whitney saw him, she has no idea what he looks like. He knows where she lives and works. He anticipates her every move. Worst of all, he’s hiding in plain sight and believes she has information he needs. Information worth killing for. Again.

As the hunter drives his prey into a net of terror and international intrigue, Whitney’s only ally, Detective Leo Baroni, is taken off the case. Stripped of all semblance of safety, Whitney must suspect everyone and trust no one—and hope to come out alive.

Book Details:

Genre: Suspense
Published by: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: October 6th 2020
Number of Pages: 352
ISBN: 0785228640 (ISBN13: 9780785228646)
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Christianbook.com® | Goodreads

Read an excerpt:

The door was difficult to open. The tropical storm had transformed the alley into a wind tunnel, funneling the muggy air from one side of the block to the other. I raised a hand to pull my hair off my face and turned into the wind to keep it there, quickly turning my ponytail into a bun. As I stepped away from the door, I was surprised to see someone sprawled on the pavement in front of me.
He was lying face up. A red puddle had formed a halo around his head.
He wasn’t— was he— he wasn’t— was he dead?
As I stood there trying to process what I was seeing, the wind sent a recycling crate skidding across the cracked pavement.
I jumped.
I glanced up the alley, then down. Nothing was there. Nothing but the wind. And a dead man staring up at the cloud- streaked sky.
Behind me, I heard something scrabble across the low, flat roof.
I pivoted and glanced up. Saw a form silhouetted against the sky. Shock gave way to panic as I realized he had a gun in his hand. As I realized that he had also seen me.
I should have lunged toward the door.
But a familiar numbness was spreading over me. The prickle on my scalp, the sudden dryness in my mouth. I was living my nightmares all over again.
As I had done too often in the past, I reverted to form. I froze.
Please. Please. Please.
My thoughts latched onto that one word and refused to let it go.
If I could just punch my code into the keypad, I could slip back inside and pull the door shut behind me.
But I couldn’t do anything at all.
My fingers wouldn’t work.
Please. Please. Please.
I willed them to function, but they had long ago learned that in a dangerous situation, the best thing to do was nothing. Any movement, any action on my part had always made things worse.
And so I just stood there as my thoughts stuttered.
Fragmented.
***
Excerpt from Everywhere to Hide by Siri Mitchell. Copyright 2020 by Siri Mitchell. Reproduced with permission from Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved.



Siri Mitchell

Author Bio:

Siri Mitchell is the author of 16 novels. She has also written 2 novels under the pseudonym of Iris Anthony. She graduated from the University of Washington with a business degree and has worked in various levels of government. As a military spouse, she lived all over the world, including Paris and Tokyo.

Visit her online:
www.SiriMitchell.com, Goodreads, BookBub, Instagram, Twitter, & Facebook!




Tour Participants:

Visit these other great hosts on this tour for more great reviews, interviews, guest posts, and giveaways!






Giveaway!:

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Siri Mitchell. There will be 3 winners. Each winner will receive one (1) physical copy of Everywhere To Hide by Siri Mitchell (U.S. addresses only). The giveaway begins on October 1, 2020 and runs through November 2, 2020. Void where prohibited.
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20 October, 2020

#CoverReveal :: Love, Scandal, and Second Chances by Shilpa Suraj - @shilpaauthor #Contemporary #Romance



~ Cover Reveal ~

Love, Scandal, and Second Chances
by Shilpa Suraj


About the Book:
Arav has only ever loved one woman, Disha. But, she broke his heart to further her ambitions. 
Years later, she's achieved everything she set out to but at a steep price. She wants to come home but home doesn't want her and her work won't let her.
Arav knows Disha needs his help and the boy he once was can't walk away. 
But while his heart is large enough to forgive, it hasn't forgotten. 
Can they overcome the bitter hurt of their shared past, face the scandalous present and find their way back to each other? Is this their second chance at love or a first chance at redemption?


About the Author:



Shilpa Suraj wears many hats - corporate drone, homemaker, mother to a fabulous toddler and author.

An avid reader with an overactive imagination, Shilpa has weaved stories in her head since she was a child. Her previous stints at Google, in an ad agency and as an entrepreneur provide colour to her present day stories, both fiction and non-fiction.





Contact the Author:





16 October, 2020

Read an #Excerpt from Nargis & Other Short Stories by @HermitPen #ShortStories



About the Book:



The book is a collection of 8 short stories, each unique and different from others, covering various facets of life, inspired by real-life characters and incidents.

The stories address contemporary social issues like loneliness, binge dating, domestic abuse, social media addiction, celebrity worship, and also contemporary environmental issues like pollution, dwindling water resources, declining fertility rate, chemical warfare, etc. 

The stories also attempt to illustrate the pain and wounds of contemporary political issues like lynching, conflicts, refugees, etc.

All the characters seem very familiar and we can easily relate to them.



Book Links:
Goodreads | AmazonIndia | Amazon USA



Read an Excerpt from Nargis & Other Short Stories



Nargis

It is 2030 and most of the water on earth is polluted.


In the beginning, it was industrial pollution that rendered most of the water beyond human usage, and then the water wars that followed resulted in the extensive use of chemical and biological weapons, which further left the remaining water sources toxic.


In less than 10 years, water had become the currency, and owners of non-toxic water source the new age kings, with their own militias, protecting their wells and supply chain.


Water trading was the most lucrative business now.


Namita


Namita had stopped thinking about resistance or confrontation long back. Domestic abuse and sometimes physical abuse had become part of life for her. She had accepted it. It was no secret either. Most people around her knew. It’s difficult to hide the scars, especially the physical ones. 


Lynched


Since that fateful day, he had wished for only two things. To meet the family of the boy he had killed and the people who had killed his brother. 


He couldn't make up his mind as to what will give him the closure he needed. 


The atonement of his sin or revenge. Guilt and vengeance had been consuming him.


Neha


All she could manage was “Why are you good to me Shoeb? Why do you still stick around when everyone else has given up on me, and now you brought my child to me”.


Neha could not control anymore, tears started rolling down her cheeks. 


Shoeb softly spoke almost in a whisper to Neha “We have taken him out of the shelter and legally adopted him. We will raise him as our own now”


Banaras


He had plans of getting married next year. An arranged marriage. His parents in Hyderabad had already selected the bride for him. He knew nothing about the girl and was not interested to know either. He believed that arranged marriage will ensure that his parents will be taken care of in their old age, which was his prime responsibility, being the only son, as has been repeatedly hammered into his head, by the society, since childhood.


Lipsticks


The night was beautiful, a bit cold though to be sitting in the balcony in only a t-shirt, this had been her ritual, night after night. 


The silence at this time of the night is addictive. It calms the volatile souls and tames the inner demons. 


TikTok


Finally, she read out Waheed’s post aloud “I respectfully decline The Smith Award, which is considered no less than Noble prize, awarded to me for my thesis “Impact of Social Media on the Psyche of Celebrities”, due to the sad and unfortunate demise of a subject during the course of an experiment.”


Oh Syria!


Qasim, on the other hand, was sad, very sad. He had this foreboding that his days on his homeland were numbered and he won’t be able to return, ever. 


This was the home of his ancestors. Their graves were here. His father used to tell him that for centuries his family had lived in this town. 



About The Author:




The author Mr. Hermit Pen is a regular contributor to short stories and articles for various anthologies, magazines, and own blog. 

Mr. Hermit Pen is a Business Consultant by profession with a degree in Engineering and an MBA. He is well-traveled, having spent half of his life outside India; he is presently based in Gurgaon, India.

He is a movie buff, music connoisseur, and a cricket fanatic.  He also closely follows politics and current affairs. He is a vocal advocate of education, human rights, and equality, and he occasionally dabble in social activism.

At the cusp of reinventing himself once again, Mr. Hermit Pen with all humility showcases his debut book, Nargis.




Contact the Author:
Email Twitter Instagram | Facebook | Blog



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Read an #Excerpt from Murder, Forgotten by Deb Richardson-Moore - @partnersincr1me #MurderMystery #Thriller

Murder, Forgotten

by Deb Richardson-Moore

on Tour October 1-16, 2020

Synopsis:

Murder, Forgotten by Deb Richardson-Moore

With the publication of 'Murder, Forgotten', Deb Richardson-Moore departs from her popular Branigan Powers series and introduces us to an unforgettable protagonist and a heart-pounding mystery that explores the vagaries of the mind and the way our memory often betrays us. The themes are both universal and personal at once. How does grief alter one’s memory? Is there more truth in fiction than in reality? This is a novel will have readers questioning their own motivations and that of the protagonist, Julianna Burke.



Julianna is a mystery writer who is famous for her ‘wanderings’ – eventually returning to her writing desk with exciting plot twists. But lately, she has nothing to show for her creative work. She fears her memory is slipping, and with it her heralded career.

Then her beloved husband and business partner is murdered. The police look at workmen, extended family and neighbors, but Julianna fears something far worse. Could she, deep in the writing of her latest mystery, 'Murder, Forgotten,' have acted out the fictional murder? In this plot within a plot, she seeks to find the killer. Can she find the truth when she questions her own reality?

'Murder, Forgotten' takes us from coastal South Carolina to the eastern shores of Scotland in a sweeping mystery that explores Julianna, grief-stricken and wounded, as she searches for truth in the midst of her own fiction.

Book Details:

Genre: Murder Mystery, Southern Mystery, Thriller
Published by: Lion Fiction
Publication Date: September 18th 2020
Number of Pages: 304
ISBN: 1782643117 (ISBN13: 9781782643111)
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Read an excerpt:

FROM CHAPTER 2 –

In the days following Connor’s death, Logan had spent more time with her mother than in the past several years. Julianna had gone to stay with her neighbor, Liza Holland, and had moved through Liza’s house like a ghost – or a mental patient. She had appeared vacant at the funeral, with Margot hovering at her elbow to cover her lapses with both local mourners and New York publishing executives. Just last week, after deputies allowed Julianna back into this house, Logan had brought dinner. Through all that, her mother had never mentioned a new book.
But then she wouldn’t have. She was spacey at the best of times. After Connor’s death, her sleep became more disrupted, her empty stares more pronounced, her answers more nonsensical. Frankly, Logan had been relieved when Margot whisked her out of the country. But if you didn’t have to deal with the real Julianna Burke, the thought of a new Julianna Burke mystery was delicious. Logan would snuggle into bed sooner than she had planned and see what Martin Engler’s problem was. But first, she had to lock up downstairs. She stood, nearly tripping over Annabelle, who’d followed her into Julianna’s room unnoticed.
The dog whimpered.
“I know, baby girl,” Logan said. “Your mama will come back. I promise. But you get to sleep in my room tonight. How’s that?”
Annabelle trotted out of the room and dashed to Logan’s childhood bedroom. She sat at the door, looking up expectantly. “Back in a flash,” Logan assured her. She walked down the stairs and through the living quarters, turning off a living room lamp, rechecking the security alarm, and locking the door that led from the kitchen on to rickety side stairs. Circling back, she saw the glow from her mother’s office. She knew she’d left a light on, but the hairs on the back of her neck bristled nonetheless.
She’d never been afraid in this house, not once, not even as a teen left alone overnight when her mother and Connor remained in Columbia or Greenville or Asheville after a book signing. “The neighbors are so close,” she’d whined in her successful campaign of persuasion not to be dragged along. But those close neighbors hadn’t prevented Connor’s murder. For that matter, neither had the other two people in the house.
Logan took a steadying breath and returned to the office, the black binder still in her hand.
She reached to turn off the desk lamp but then thought about this treasure she’d unearthed in Connor’s bedside table. What else might there be? Resolutely turning her back on the blood-stained chair, she pulled open the slender top drawer of her mother’s desk. She felt guilty for a moment. Though she’d talked to her distracted mother from the office doorway or slouched on the couch as a teen seeking permission for one thing or another, she’d never been alone in this space.
***
Excerpt from Murder, Forgotten by Deb Richardson–Moore. Copyright 2020 by Deb Richardson–Moore. Reproduced with permission from Deb Richardson–Moore. All rights reserved.



Author Bio:

Deb Richardson–Moore
Deb Richardson-Moore is the author of 4 fiction titles and a memoir, The Weight of Mercy, about her early years as a pastor at the Triune Mercy Center in Greenville, S.C. A former national award-winning reporter for The Greenville News, Deb is a popular speaker at book clubs, universities and college events. She has won numerous awards for her philanthropy and community involvement, including the 2014 Women Making History Award from the Greenville, South Carolina Cultural Exchange Center and the 2016 Public & Community Service Award from the Atlantic Institute. A graduate of Wake Forest University, Deb lives with her husband in South Carolina.

Catch Up With Deb Richardson-Moore:
http://www.DebRichardsonMoore.com, Goodreads, BookBub, & Facebook!




Tour Participants:

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This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Deb Richardson-Moore. There will be 4 winners. Two (2) winners will each win one (1) Amazon.com Gift Card and Two (2) winners will each win one (1) ebook copy ofMurder, Forgotten by Deb Richardson-Moore. The giveaway begins on October 1, 2020 and runs through October 18, 2020. Void where prohibited.
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12 October, 2020

Read an #Excerpt from Emergency Powers by James McCrone - @partnersincr1me #Suspense #Thriller

Emergency Powers by James McCrone Banner

 

Emergency Powers

by James McCrone

on Tour October 1-31, 2020

Synopsis:

Emergency Powers by James McCrone
The accidental president is no accident. The investigation that was FBI Agent Imogen Trager’s undoing may be the key to stopping a brutal, false flag terrorist attack meant to tighten a puppet president’s grip on power.

Emergency Powers will delight mystery and thriller fans (“Great for fans of Brad Meltzer, David Baldacci.” -Publishers Weekly) And politics junkies will enjoy the ripped-from-the-headlines urgency. But it’s about more than the headlines. And darker. A story of corruption and redemption, achieved at enormous personal cost, featuring FBI Agent Imogen Trager: “a memorable protagonist—as tough as she is smart.” (Kirkus Review)  Indeed, "Three tough female characters steal the show: FBI agents Vega, Sartain, and Trager. Overall, the power dynamics of these women...are something special.” (T. LIEBERMAN, Independent Book Review)

As the story begins, Imogen is haunted—and sidelined—by a case she couldn’t solve. When the president dies in office, she knows that the conspiracy she chased down a blind alley still has life in it—and she needs to get back in the hunt. As bodies pile up and leads go cold, the main target from that old case reaches out to her. He’s still at large, and now he needs protection. Imogen doesn’t trust him, and it’s not only because he’s offering intel that sounds too good to be true. He’s already tried to kill her once.

Set in D.C., Seattle and small town America, Emergency Powers is a story of corruption and redemption, achieved at enormous personal cost.

“A high-stakes political thriller that feels so chillingly true, you pray it’s not”—TOM STRAW, seven-time NYT bestselling author, as Richard Castle

"RECOMMENDED” - Kate Robinson, US Review of Books

“Compelling, heart-pounding and thoroughly intriguing…”— STEPHEN MACK JONES, August Snow, Lives Laid Away

“Keen portraits of true patriotism—and the courage that drives it.” —  ART TAYLOR, The Boy Detective & The Summer of ’74

Book Details:

Genre: Suspense-Thriller
Published by: James McCrone
Publication Date: October 1, 2020
Number of Pages: 300
ISBN: 9780999137727 (9780999137734)
Series: An Imogen Trager Thriller
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Bookshop.org | Goodreads

Read an excerpt:

Friday, March 10
Seattle, Washington

1

Just before 5am, FBI Agent Imogen Trager gave a low growl and reached for the phone, buzzing officiously on the nightstand. She sat on the edge of the bed she shared with Duncan Calder, glowering at it as her eyes focused in the dark. Fixing a strand of red hair behind her ear, she scrolled through texts and posts from colleagues and friends. Her anger turned from dismay to sickening fear.
“Duncan!” She shook him awake and handed him the phone. He sat up and took it, scanning the news, instantly awake.
Imogen rose and picked her way to the living room in the dark where she turned on the television. The piercing glare of the screen stung the murky Northwest morning. Some 3,700 miles away, Vice President Robert Moore approached a phalanx of microphones, manfully fighting back tears:
“My fellow Americans,” he said, “it is my sad duty to confirm that Diane Redmond, the President of the United States, is dead.”
Bob Moore, a towering figure in person, looked small on screen, standing in the rain under a canopy of black umbrellas at the entrance to Walter Reed Medical Center. Duncan joined Imogen in the darkness, and she reached for his hand.
They stared, dumbfounded, as Moore continued: “Her doctors have informed me”—here he paused to clear his throat—“that the cause of death is believed to be a heart attack; that it was sudden and fatal. A full autopsy is underway, and it will give us a clearer picture. Our prayers go out to her family and loved ones.
“The Chief Justice has administered the Oath of Office to me here in the presence of cabinet members and hospital staff. The preservation of our great nation’s interests, its security and the continuity of government are assured.”
Duncan turned to Imogen: “Is it starting again?”
“I don’t think it ever stopped,” she brooded, her green eyes smoldering. “We failed. We didn’t cut the head off the snake.” Fury rose within her, sharp and raw like nausea.
Duncan handed her back the phone. It continued buzzing as reporters swarmed, asking for a quote from her as the public and photogenic face of the Faithless Elector investigation. She’d learned her lesson there and declined each call.
Their texted questions—the ones she bothered to read—were, as usual, off the mark: Would the Faithless Elector task force be revived to look into the President’s death? Would unanswered questions from the investigation strengthen or weaken support for the new President? Regarding the first: the task force was alive, if not well, she thought, and at any rate, she’d be one of the last to know about any official changes or developments. As to the second: Take a fucking a poll.
None of them asked the real questions—the ones she needed answered: Was this the final move of the conspiracy she had chased madly into a blind alley? If so, how had the dark network assassinated a President inside the White House? Who was moving the pieces, and what were the next moves? Most pressing: How would she get herself back in the hunt? From her phone, she deleted the draft email bearing the resignation she had planned to send on Monday morning.
Dawn was still some two hours away as Calder sat down on the couch next to her. “So you won’t be resigning, I take it,” he observed.
“No,” she said, not looking up from her notebook.
“How will you begin?”
She looked up. “We were digging in the wrong place. I’m going to go back over the associates and links we’ve established, see where or how any of them point at Bob Moore.”
“So Moore digging, eh?” he quipped.
Imogen sighed. She loved him, but how was he able to have distance at a moment like this? she wondered. She eyed him wearily. “Duncan, I’m going to get stonewalling from Nettie at the office about this new direction. I’m—”
He held up a hand. “What will you do?” He looked at her notebook. “And who’s Carla?”
“I’m going back to the data.”
“You’ve gotten nowhere with that,” said Calder acidly.
“Because we were looking at it in relation to other actors. Not Moore. And Carla’s not a who, but a what—short for ‘CARLA F BAD’: Character, Associates, Reputation, Loyalty, Ability, Finances, Bias, Alcohol, Drugs. It’s what you look at in a security clearance, among other things. It helps define spheres of influence and interaction. The disclosure dossiers on the men who’ve been working directly under Moore will have looked precisely at these CARLA factors. And I want to look at them, too. And his associates. So I’ll go backward, this time with Moore in mind. I want to look at his campaign finances. Who funded him early on in the race? Who else was involved or associated? Maybe something jumps out at me. Maybe that’ll point me in a direction.”
“It’s a lot of maybes, ’Gen.” He scratched at his iron gray hair.
“It’s where I’ll start. There’s always a gap in the armor somewhere. The really hard part is that I can’t just request materials the regular way through regular channels without telegraphing what I’m trying to do.”
“Or looking like you’re still part of the Faithless Elector case.”
She nodded and looked at him uncertainly. “And…I think I should cut this weekend short, if I can get a flight back to D.C.”
“I’m wondering what you’re still doing here,” he said.
Imogen leaned in and kissed him.
On the East Coast it was early morning, but across much of the country the sun was still not up. In the darkness, the announcement of Redmond’s death in office set off a series of moves seemingly unconnected and largely unremarked, as pawns were sacrificed and battle pieces were moved into place for the final gambit.
Rocky Mountains
Snow lit by headlights split the darkness, blinding the Highway patrolman who waited for the tow truck to pull out a car buried in the snow. Working in the dark about 14 miles west-by-southwest of Aspen, Colorado, the tow truck was having a difficult time dragging the car out. In what must have been whiteout conditions, the car had plunged through a guardrail and into the ravine.
As the patrolman stood at the side of the road waiting for the winch operator to do his work, he took off his right glove to read an alert on his phone. Speechless, he watched the news clip of now-President Moore at the hospital. Bewildered, numb—and not just from the cold—he stared over the still-dark, bleak expanse of mountains.
“Damn,” said the winch operator, breaking the patrolman’s reverie. The contorted steel shell of a car came into view and slowly ascended backwards up the steep hill. “You guys close Route 82 for more than half the year. Maybe you should think about closing this one, too.”
“We serve and protect,” the patrolman countered. “We can’t protect them from their own stupidity.”
Maricopa, California
Ninety-five miles northwest of Los Angeles, near Bakersfield, west of where the lush groves of San Emidio return to desert, police had responded to a call reporting shots fired.
The bodies of four men lay strewn around the living room and kitchen of a battered, double-wide trailer home, victims of an apparent drug deal gone bad. Even before forensics got to work, it was obvious the house had been used as a meth lab. An acrid stench burned the eyes and throats of the responding officers, who quickly backed out and awaited the Kern County forensics team.
As two officers sat in a squad car in the dark guarding the site, news reached them of the death of the president. They watched Moore at Walter Reed on the lieutenant’s phone. The death of these four drug dealers now seemed even less important. Desultorily, they searched the onboard police computer for information about the four corpses. Two of them had arrest records, known agitators and members of a border vigilante group.
“Right,” the lieutenant said to the patrolman. “Illegally funded law and order.”
“For some,” the officer added.
In Seattle, Imogen packed her bags, while fewer than six miles away but as blind to one another as opposite sides of the same coin, a sleek Eclipse 500 jet touched down at Boeing Field. The light jet taxied rapidly in the damp winter darkness, coming to an abrupt stop on a dimly lit portion of the tarmac at the north end of the field.
The hiss of its engines became a plaintive whistle as the doors popped open and two young men, Dan Cardoso and Eric Janssen, ran down the steps. They immediately turned round and helped close the stairs. But for this gesture of help, anyone witnessing their arrival—and no one did—might have mistaken them for two young executives returning from a casual outing.
Its doors sealed once more, the small jet in the tan-on-beige livery of Flintlock Industries, pushed on, the whistle of its engines discordantly climbing the scale as it taxied away. Cardoso and Janssen walked toward their cars parked just outside a chain link fence, fist-bumping as they separated at the gate.
“See you April 20,” Janssen said.
Cardoso gave a thumbs-up as he turned away. Though the tarmac was deserted, the bravado exchange was a crucial performance. They had each been schooled in the need for watchfulness—especially of one another. Any sign of dissent, hint of doubt or fading spirit should be reported.
Alone for the first time in more than 24 hours, each man allowed himself to think about what had just happened. On orders, they’d dispatched the members of a cell near Bakersfield, California, much like their own, though a failing one according to their handler. Although they had kept their misgivings to themselves, each had arrived at the same conclusion: when given a list of people marked for death, the quickest way to get your name added to the list was to refuse or even question the job. Each ruminated on the final step to come, and whether they would receive their just, or their eternal, reward.
Before their cars were started, and as Imogen zipped her suitcase closed, the light jet was in the air, headed east to another rendezvous.

2

Reactions to the death of the President were swift across the nation and the political spectrum. Imogen, now waiting at the airport gate, had inadvertently seated herself between two television monitors, each tuned to a different 24-hour news channel. They faced each other, across her and the political divide. At times, they seemed to be arguing with each other, and she found herself glancing back and forth like someone watching a tennis match. Travelers congregated silently at screens large and small throughout the terminal.
The remarkable unanimity of official emotion on television and across social media made it seem that everyone in Washington had been issued the same talking points memo: Redmond was praised for her “integrity,” her “dignity” and “strength,” each promising to uphold the unity she had embodied and to deliver on her legacy while offering support to Moore. There were, Imogen noted, still a few unfilled cabinet positions left. Snapchat, she mused tartly, seemed like a better venue for all the disposable preening and jockeying.
The news was rife with speculation about what had befallen President Redmond, and what a new Moore administration might look like. Between the two televisions and along the political spectrum, while politicians hewed to their “unity in adversity” tropes, the talking heads seemed to be going through their own peculiar stages of grief: conservative hosts, when not in denial about the larger implications, presented with over-modulated anger; whereas mainstream pundits registered shock and dismay, their interviews with Democratic leaders manifesting pain, and above all bargaining. Only religious leaders seemed to have progressed to acceptance and hope, anointing Moore as one demonstrably chosen by Providence. In all cases, speculation was rampant, and there were no facts in evidence, save the obvious—Redmond was dead and Moore was president.
Bob Moore was taciturn by nature, the pundits opined. He had a reputation for bloodless pronouncements, heavy on procedure and mindful of every political angle, earning him the ironic nickname “ad lib Bob.” But on the campaign trail, and during the contested fight for the Presidency, they noted, he had been a different man. All dispassion spent, he became a man of conviction. It remained to be seen, the pundits agreed, as to which version of Moore would prevail now that he was President.
***
Excerpt from Emergency Powers by James McCrone. Copyright 2020 by James McCrone. Reproduced with permission from James McCrone. All rights reserved.



Author Bio:

James McCrone
James McCrone has a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Washington, in Seattle. He’s a member of Crime Writers of America (NY Chapter), Sisters in Crime (DE-Valley Chapter), Int’l Assoc. of Crime Writers, Philadelphia Dramatists Center and Int’l Thriller Writers.
He's the author of Faithless Elector and Dark Network, the first two Imogen Trager "Noirpolitik" suspense-thrillers about a stolen presidency. The third Imogen Trager thriller, EMERGENCY POWERS, is due out in late September, 2020. His short story, "Numbers Don't Lie" will appear in the anthology Low Down Dirty Vote, Vol.2 (M. Berry, ed.), out on July 4, 2020.
A Pacific Northwest native, he now lives in Philadelphia with his wife and three adult children.
James's work explores characters pitted against forces larger than themselves. Both on an off the page, he's fascinated with politics and issues of social responsibility and justice.

Catch Up With James McCrone:
JamesMcCrone.com, Chosen Words Blog, Goodreads, BookBub, Instagram, Twitter, & Facebook!




Tour Participants:

Visit these other great hosts on this tour for more great reviews, interviews, guest posts, and giveaways!






Giveaway!!:

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for James McCrone. There will be 4 winners. Two winners will each receive one (1) Amazon.com Gift Card and Two winners will each win EMERGENCY POWERS by James McCrone (Print ~ US and Canada addresses only). The giveaway begins on October 1, 2020 and runs through November 2, 2020. Void where prohibited.
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Get More Great Reads at Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours

 

11 October, 2020

#Interview with Manasi Patil, #Author of Why Ignore Them? Let's Confront and Win!!



About the Author:


When she was 5 years old, Manasi had written her first story ever. From then, her journey in the writers world has started. She has written many unpublished stories and poems. 'The Cousins Crime' is the first ever published book and she wishes to continue the series ‘Krisha Batra’.
Manasi Patil is a 14-year-old girl from India who is passionate about reading and writing. And to follow her dreams, the sky is just the beginning...








Manasi on the Web:
Goodreads * Amazon

Interview with Manasi Patil


When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer/ a storyteller?

When I was in middle-school, I had started writing short stories and poems. Since then, I kept on writing. Often, I used to say that I want to be a writer. But mainly, I think the zest of storytelling started from the time when my granny used to narrate to me tales during bedtime.

What inspires you to write?

The magic pot at the end of the rainbow, is all I can see when I start writing. I want to be a successful part-timer writer as I grow up, and the results of my work, the dream which I see, inspires me to write.

How did you come up with the idea for your current story?

During the lockdown of 2020, I began to notice the change in the atmosphere. Suddenly, there were birds in the sky, the air was cleaner and freshening, beaches returned to their original colours, and many more nature-benefiting changes. But I also wondered, what after the lockdown? Will all these changes go waste? And that was my inspiration for ‘WHY IGNORE THEM?’. In the book, I have penned down 9 ignored, but crucial world problems. I hope to spread the awareness in one and all through my words.

Are there some stories tucked away in some drawer that was written before and never saw the light of the day? 

Yes! I have a load of unpublished work, that is yet to be edited and worked on. I hope to publish them one day…

Tell us about your writing process.

Well, it’s really simple. I just gather a notebook, a pen and my thoughts! Whenever I come up with an idea, I note it down and then, when I start writing, I use it. During editing, though, I do everything in a prim and proper way.
There’s no specific time and place which inspires me to write, but I aim to write for at least an hour daily.

Who are your favorite authors and how have they influenced your writing style?

I have many favorite authors, but some of the top include Enid Blyton, Mildred Benson, Meg Cabot, Dan Brown, Sudha Murthy, Alfred Hitchcock, and the list goes on… These authors have not influenced me on just one point. Their writing style, their narrative process, it all blends together and makes a part of MY writing process.

What is the best piece of advice you have received, as a writer, till date? 

‘Don’t force yourself to write.’ Ideas come up naturally, and if you force yourself to imagine the plot, it will not turn out to be the very best.

If you were to be stranded on the famous deserted island, what three things would you carry?

A mystery book, for sure, a mobile(To note down my ideas), and lots of food and water!!!

How do you spend your free time? Do you have a favorite place to go and unwind?

Depends on my mood, but 9 times out of ten, I read. There’s no specific place where I go to unwind myself, because any place is fine as long as I have my favorite things with me.

Can you share with us something off your bucket list?

Write at least 50 blogs till the end of 2020.
Complete editing my third book.
Make progress with the first draft for my fourth book.

Tell us three fun facts about yourself.

I love thinking, I like to imagine situations, I can read for a real, real, long time.

What do you have in store next for your readers?

The 2nd book in the series ‘KRISHA BATRA’ is being edited, and it will be out soon.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with your readers?

Keep reading and reading and reading and reading as you never know when the information may come handy!


About the Book:
Never noticed before!
----(read further…)
People are trying to solve many global issues.
But what if some major problems are just been ignored?
There are some issues that are not the ones which first come to our mind when thinking of the world problems.
These can be solved only through right actions.
What are those? Well, find out!

In ‘Why Ignore Them?’ you will find-
* The 9 majorly ignored problems.
* Solutions to many of them.
* How to avoid the issues.
* Why are they a great threat to us.
* Extra knowledge, which is brand new! (and who doesn’t want something new, curious and interest-piquing in today’s world?!)


Book Links:
Amazon * Notion Press






10 October, 2020

#SciFiSaturday - Playing dress-up with real people: #Cosplay - @kayelleallen @nitsvetov

What is it like playing dress-up with living dolls? Imagine having a character you dreamed up actually walk around, living and breathing. It's surreal and amazing. 


Dress-Up

When you were a kid, did you play dress-up? Did you put on adult clothes and role-play being mommy, daddy, or did you don a cape and become Superman or Batman? In a sense, cosplay is dress-up for adults.
Merriam Webster defines cosplay as the activity or practice of dressing up as a character from a work of fiction (such as a comic book, video game, or television show).
The point is to portray a character. Cosplayers achieve accuracy by reproducing details, colors, and in some cases, materials used by the original character. But you can also create a gender-bender, such as a male Sailor Moon, or a female Loki.
You can create a cosplay costume from scratch, building each piece yourself from craft foam or other materials. Adding paint via airbrush or by hand takes skill, gained with much practice. Some costumes are available fully created and ready to wear.

Ritual of Strength Cosplay

When I worked with Nik to create the first cosplay of Pietas, he already had some costume items needed, such as white pants and black boots. We decided he would buy two platinum wigs, one for when Pietas has short hair and one for long. I also had a cape created to fit him. Because the maker could not ship directly, I shipped it from the maker in England, to my home, and then from me to Nik in Russia. Needless to say, shipping was one of the biggest expenses. In the package, I also included the mask Pietas wears, which I had bought at OutlantaCon, a local science fiction convention, for just a few dollars. In addition, Nik rented a room for the cosplay, hired the photographer, and made sure there was proper lighting.
Considering how much went into the first cosplay, the second, in which Nik wore armor, was a piece of cake. However, he spent a month crafting the armor from scratch, right down to the shoes. I ordered a patch for him to wear on the armor that said We Are War. That was the motto of the unit Pietas led.

Cosplay by Nik



The Pietas Cosplay on Oct 10, 2020

This cosplay is for a specific scene in my book A Stolen Heart. It will also provide more shots of Pietas for me to use in advertising and banners. You can see it live between the hours of 8:00 AM (Eastern) on Oct 10, 2020 by following Nik on Instagram.

Thank you to my creative team

My sincere thanks to cosplayer Nik Nitsvetov and photographer Belyaeva Yuliya for their tireless work in bringing my immortal king to life. Watching Nik as Pietas is mind-blowing for me. Is it any wonder I talk about this character -- and especially Nik -- so much? I also have others on the Kayelle Allen Creative Team who help me showcase my story universe. You can find links to all of them here.


Nik Nitsvetov - Cosplayer

Please follow the Nik in order to watch his cosplay of Pietas and also to enjoy the many other characters he portrays.

About Nik | Instagram | Patreon | TikTok | Twitter | Nik's photography | Facebook 


Belyaeva Yuliya - Photographer

Please follow Yuliya and enjoy her artistry at creating beautiful and meaningful photographic art.

About Yuliya | Instagram (Photography) | Instagram (Cosplay) | VK



#CoverReveal :: The Wrath of the Hellfires (Vikramaditya Veergatha #4) by @Shatrujeet #IndianMytho #FantasyFiction


Patience is a Drawn Bow.
Rage, its Relentless Arrow.


Shukracharya’s plan to break the unity of Vikramaditya’s Council has borne bitter fruit. Friends have become sworn enemies, and brother has turned against brother, setting Avanti on the path to self-destruction.

Even as Vikramaditya prepares to counter a Huna invasion, a rebellion brews within Ujjayini, while a devious conspiracy is hatched to humiliate him. With Indra’s spies swarming the palace and Shukracharya making a bold bid to take the Halahala, the king is dangerously close to the brink of defeat.

Alone and abandoned by those dear to him, fighting to protect his wife and his people, trying his best to keep his promise to Shiva, will the Samrat rise one last time to defend his love, his city and his honour?

As the asura and deva forces muster in a final, desperate gamble to claim the Halahala, The Wrath of the Hellfires brings an explosive conclusion to Vikramaditya’s epic tale of action and adventure.


Other Books in the Series:




About the Author:


Shatrujeet Nath is the creator of the runaway national bestseller series Vikramaditya Veergatha, a four-book mytho-fantasy arc which comprises The Guardians of the Halahala, The Conspiracy at Meru, The Vengeance of Indra and The Wrath of the Hellfires. Described as “a new face to Indian mythology” by DNA, Shatrujeet writes for movies and web shows as well. His also the author of The Karachi Deception, an Indo-Pak spy thriller.




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