Showing posts with label book feature. Show all posts
Showing posts with label book feature. Show all posts

Thursday, 11 June 2020

Book Feature: A BARREN HEART by Shilpa Suraj

A Barren Heart by Shilpa Suraj

About the Book:
When having it all isn’t enough…

Aman and Rhea seem to have the perfect marriage. They are madly in love - with each other, with their own careers and the home and life they are building in a quiet Mumbai suburb. 
Rhea is a successful interior designer with a thriving business while Aman is a commercial pilot who is at peace with his life, on the ground and in the skies! What could possibly be lacking in their picture-perfect marriage?

A baby. 

Like most women, thirty plus Rhea Chakraborty, wants to hold her own flesh and blood in her arms. And Aman too wants the same. 

Or does he? 

After another unexplained miscarriage that takes a severe emotional, physical, and psychological toll on them, Aman isn't sure if having a baby will complete them or destroy them. 
Suddenly, Rhea and Aman find the fabric of their stable marriage fraying beneath the strain of their failed conceptions. Where once they were a team with a common goal, they now find themselves on opposite sides with shifting goalposts. 

A Barren Heart is set in so-called modern India and is the story of the struggle of an affluent, educated couple who are still fighting the shackles of societal indoctrination and expectations and losing each other in the process.

Book Links:  Amazon * Goodreads

Read an Excerpt from A Barren Heart


He powered off his kindle at the sound of her voice. He hadn’t yet made peace with the concession he’d made this morning, but he knew it was the only way forward for them. As a couple. As a family.

“Amannnnn,” she yelled out again. He couldn’t miss the excitement in her voice.

“I’m in here,” he called out. She appeared in the doorway of their guest bedroom a second later. Her hair was a mess, her clothes damp which meant she’d gotten caught in the sudden downpour that had hit earlier that evening and she looked…incandescent. His heart throbbed, the hurt a silent reminder of how much he loved this woman.

“You are not going to believe what happened today.” She launched herself into his arms. He caught her, the motion more reflexive than anything else. Setting her back, he looked at her glowing face. “What happened?”

“Sakshi Garewal, my client from hell recommended me to a friend of hers.”

It lightened his heart a bit to see her so excited about something as normal as a new project. It had been a very long while since she’d found joy in the simple parts of their life. “Congratulations,” he said.

“Guess who it is,” she squeezed his hand.

“Someone famous?” he smiled, her happiness was contagious. “Bollywood or cricket?”

“Bollywood with a bang.” She flopped back on the bed her arms spread out like she wanted to hug the room. “Amyra Sareen.”

“You’re joking!” A low whistle escaped him. “That is the big time.”

“Yes, it is.” She pumped a fist in the air. “I’m going to be designing Amyra Sareen’s apartment. I’ve finally broken into the big league.”

“Congratulations,” he said, again. He was so proud of her. She’d worked her butt off to get to this point.

“We should celebrate.” Rhea shot up from her prone position. “Get ready. We’re going out to dinner. My treat.”

She was halfway to the door when she slowed. “Why are you in the guest bedroom?”

It had taken so long to penetrate. Curiously numb, he watched her as she turned to face him, a frown marring the smooth lines of her brow.


“I just needed a little space.” The numbness was turning icy now that he had finally said the words.

“Space?” she repeated. “Space from me?” Confusion warred with anxiety as she took a step forward. Aman didn’t answer.

“If this is about the appointment with the doctor, we don’t have to go.”

“We do,” he said, gently but firmly.

“Why? It’s obvious you don’t want to go and I won’t force you.”

No, she wouldn’t. Not overtly. She wouldn’t realise it, but it would fester and she’d resent him. And it would kill him to see her love for him turn into something else. To see her turn into a bitter, frustrated shell of the vibrant, joyful woman he loved.

“We’ll go because you want to.” He stood up from the bed and moved towards her. “Set it up for tomorrow. I have a flight to Dubai scheduled day after.”

“No.” She shook her head, tears standing in her eyes, her earlier excitement leaching away. “I don’t want it enough to lose you.”

“You’re not losing me,” he said, his chest feeling like someone had tightened a vice around it. “I just needed a little space to clear my head.” And he couldn’t do that surrounded by her and her emotions all the time.

“I haven’t left home or you, Rhea. I’m right here. Just in another room for a couple of days. I need to think and I can’t do that clearly if we’re in each other’s faces.”

A single tear slipped out, trailing down her cheek. He cradled her face gently and wiped it away with his thumb. “Go get ready. We have to go out to celebrate.”

“I don’t feel like it anymore.” Rhea pulled back, looking lost and confused. “I think I need to clear my head too. I’m going for a walk.” She left before he could say another word. He heard the front door shut a minute later.

Be careful what you ask for, people often said. As Aman stood alone in the silent, darkening room, he realized that he had all the space he’d asked for, but he wasn’t sure he wanted it anymore.

He wanted to call her back. To bring back the excitement, the happiness she’d come home with. He wanted their life to go back to what it had been before this whole baby story began. He wanted his wife back. The wife who’d radiated joy, whose ambition had driven her to reach for the stars, whose love for him had been his anchor.

But he didn’t know how to turn back time. He didn’t know how to recapture that shiny bubble they’d lived in. He didn’t know how to go back to where they’d been before this whole baby story had taken over their life. So, he took the space he’d asked for and used it to think. To figure out where they went from here, because they couldn’t go back to the past and the present was a ticking time bomb.

About Shilpa Suraj:

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.

Shilpa on the Web:

Friday, 29 May 2020

BOOK RELEASE: SOLANGE an ebook by Linzé

Will she get the future she wants?

M/F/M Erotic vampire romance (18+ only)

  Solange knows that she is not like the average woman who frequents the bar of her two vampire lovers. When the vampire king's messenger stirs everything into a near disaster, she knew things were about to change forever.

  She knows that being human in a threesome that includes two deadly and powerful male vampires will take everything she has to keep them together. 

  Solange never lacked courage or intelligence, and demanding to see the king could result in something that she may not be prepared for: the enforcement of the centuries-old execution decision.

  The history behind the decision made her even more determined to prevent their relationship from being destroyed over a long-dead woman's mistake.

  Is her courage and commitment to this relationship enough to convince the king or is there another way to get what she wants?

Buy links

Smashwords     Apple Books    B&N    Kobo

Thursday, 16 April 2020

A to Z Challenge: Day 14 - N

Charlene Namdhari's A STRANGER'S AFFECTION

** a book feature **

There is nothing stronger than a broken woman who has rebuilt herself.” – Hannah Gadsby

Revenge is a deadly weapon. But it takes a special kind of vengeance to make a woman kill without remorse, to laugh without mirth, to challenge without thought. Kidnapped at seventeen, held captive and then forced into the world of crime, Nishani Scott Callahan defines fearless.

Back with her family eleven years later and ready for normalcy, fate strikes another blow. Abducted on her honeymoon, she’s severely assaulted. Fierce determination sees her escaping straight into the headlamps of a stranger's vehicle.

Billionaire Colton Black is hardcore. A man who treads a fine line between good and bad. He's got no time for love, until a rough pearl with dark hair and deep blue eyes lands in his lap, badly beaten and missing a chunk of her memory. Saving her means risking his guarded privacy, but her feistiness when she awakens catches him completely off-guard.

Equally unprepared, Nishani can’t fathom this ferociously controlled man who appears to reach past her scars to touch her fractured soul.

Will he be her salvation or her ruin?


About the Author

  Born and raised in the coastal city of Durban, South Africa, she now lives in the City of Gold, Johannesburg. Charlene’s days are an energetic mixture of a full time job, a wife and mom to two beautiful teenagers and four dogs.
  She holds a law degree and is a passionate events manager. 
  Charlene enjoys travelling, a Mediterranean cruise being her most recent venture. She hopes to retire to a beautiful seaside cottage where she can spend lazy days on the beach drinking cocktails and focus all her energy on writing. She is of the firm opinion that one should not give up on a dream but rather make every attempt to get there no matter how long it takes. 
  Her love for writing stemmed from an avid interest in English at School, more so Literature and enjoyed writing short stories. She attempted her first full length novel fifteen years ago and although she loved the finish product decided she’d write mainly as a hobby and only recently sought publishing.
Believing writing is the wings to holistic escapism, she makes the time in her busy schedule giving life to her dreams of bringing together passion filled heroes and heroines in a happily ever after.

Monday, 13 April 2020

A to Z Challenge: Day 11 - K

Kayelle Allen's A STOLEN HEART (a book feature)

After rescuing a half-alien / half-human child who's running for his life, warrior-turned-entrepreneur Luc Saint-Cyr stumbles onto a conspiracy at the highest levels of the powerful Thieves' Guild. Complicating matters, Luc's immortal ex might be involved.
Now Luc must deal with his ex, find a home for the child, squelch the flames of conspiracy and eradicate its perpetrators. As if that's not enough, an unseen enemy is undoing every good thing Luc accomplishes.
But when it comes time to give up the child to a family who can care for him, how will Luc bear to part with the adorable little boy who has stolen his heart...
All this friendliness stank of a trap.
Luc Saint-Cyr paced the length of the Negotiator's observation deck and back. No short distance. The view of Kelthia's black seas from space filled one transparent wall. From here, Miraj City glowed like a million lampyris birds trapped in a net, subject to the whim of their masters.
His luxurious top-of-the-line private transport entertained twenty passengers in comfort for a month and navigated hyperspace without nav-crystals. But when the ship reached his king's monstrous bird of prey, Le Persequor would ingest Luc's vessel like a hawk gulping a flitting gnat.
Once Luc boarded, he'd be no more free than a lampyris, with his net the grace of his king.
He played the man's holovid again.
"Will you meet with me?" Pietas's calm tenor voice offered no overt danger. No concrete menace. No definable threat.
His king was smiling, but that meant nothing. Pietas smiled when commanding his panther to devour an enemy too.
Since receiving the message two days ago, Luc had replayed it at least thirty times. Dread choked him, each time.
No, this was too simple. Too short. Too cordial. Too... not Pietas.
Luc had verified the origin and veracity of the message, but still refused to believe it. Even he, the closest Pietas had to a true friend, received commands, not requests.
"I'm only one jump away from Kelthia. Uurah will let you know when we reach orbit. I hope you won't leave the planet before I get there."
Since when did Pietas say he hoped you wouldn't do anything? He flat out told you.
"Talk to you soon." Pietas reached down, off camera. From the motion, he had to be petting the panther. His smile pierced the holocam. "Can't wait to see you, Cyken." The scene went black.
A tap skipped the vid back to its final image. Luc zoomed in on his king's face. No wrinkles around the eyes, no lines around the noble mouth. Pietas had been reborn and the age difference showed. Makeup and poorly lit images hid plenty, but only an immortal with a planet-sized ego would think he could shave off that many years and the mortal public wouldn't notice. Why would he risk revealing their biggest secret?
Immortal blood brought mortals back from the dead.
They'd soon learned never to reveal what they were. The brazen entitlement of mortals to commandeer an immortal's blood for their own use put his people at risk. Had for millennia.
Luc looped back to the final sentence. "Can't wait to see you, Cyken."
As an Ultra, Luc had lived thousands of years among mortals, and had used hundreds of different names over his many lifespans. His Sempervian name never changed. Not to his king. To his king, Cyken was a family name. Family was everything.
But the disquieting way Pietas had crooned that last sentence layered implications Luc preferred not to consider. The man never missed an opportunity to flirt, no matter how many years they'd been apart. What issue did Pietas have with the word no?
And now this baffling holovid. In over thirty-four hundred years since their exile from Sempervia, when had the king come to him instead of summoning?
Luc powered off the vid. "That would be never."

A Stolen Heart, sci fi from Kayelle Allen

Want to know when this book is available? Like to have a free read before it's out? Join one of Kayelle's reader groups. You'll also get free starter books right away.

Kayelle Allen writes Sci Fi with misbehaving robots, mythic heroes, role playing immortal gamers, and warriors who purr. She is the author of multiple books, novellas, and short stories. She's also a US Navy veteran and has been married so long she's tenured.

Friday, 14 February 2020

Book Feature: SOMETHING OLD, SOMETHING NEW (an anthology)

Something Old, Something New
- A DRA Production

Seven bestselling authors. Seven incredible second chance romances. One epic anthology. 

What would you do for another chance with the one you love? 

Something Old, Something New - a unique novella anthology - tries to answer this question with fantastic, different, desi dramas. 

Whether it is shapeshifters or shifting interracial relationships, single moms in small towns or rich alpha heroes, friends-to-lovers or passionate ex-husbands; this anthology has something for everyone. 
Something Old, Something New explores the many different facets of love, forgiveness, fated mates and more in seven, distinctly Indian tales!

My Heart's Regret by Shilpa Sure

All they had was love...would it ever be enough?

Samaira Reddy, the girl in the big house, the Bade Sahib's daughter, only wants one thing and one person...a life with her childhood sweetheart, her Rags. 
Raghav Cherukuri has always been known as the driver's son. And has also always loved his Sam, the girl he can never have and never forget. And so, he leaves her and his life in Hyderabad behind.
But now, Raghav is back. A Chief Officer in the Merchant Navy, he is the success he’s always wanted to be. And yet, he has failed. 
Samaira is meeting the ‘perfect groom’ her family approves of…A man whom Raghav can never be.
Can it finally be their time to be together? Or has their happy-ever-after passed them by?

Read an Excerpt from My Heart's Regret

“Why did you leave?” The question shot out of her taking them both by surprise. They stared at each other, a wealth of memories flooding the space between them. Years of hurt, months of pain and a million unspoken words crowded around them.
“Don’t.” He turned away from her, shaking his head. “Don’t do this.”
“Why not? You don’t think I deserve any kind of explanation?” 
He opened the rear door of the car in response. “Are you ready to go home?” 
“Home?” She laughed, a bitter sound that floated in the air. “Is that still home to you?”
“Are you ready to go back to your home?” The slight emphasis felt like a slap across her face.
“And that’s the truth of it, isn’t it?” She watched his face for a clue to his feelings. She found none. He was as stone-faced as ever.
“You don’t think of it as home anymore. When you left, you didn’t just leave to study and start your career. You left everything behind. Your home. Your past. Your…”
“Yes.” His acceptance cut her off mid-rant. “I left it all behind. The poverty. The insults. The humiliation. I left my life here behind.”
“Is that all you left behind?” The words sliced through the night like a knife.
Raghav just stared at her, his eyes a cauldron of bottomless emotion. On a growl of frustration, she slid down from the car and stomped towards the door he still held open. Yanking it from his hand, she slammed it shut. Then she walked around the front of the car to the passenger door and got in.
A storm was coming. A loud rumble of thunder could be heard and the wind was picking up outside the car. It blew a lock of his unruly hair into his eyes. 
He didn’t notice but she did. Even through the tears stinging her eyes, she noticed everything about him. 
Raghav continued to stand, motionless by the rear door, his tightly clenched fists the only evidence of the emotion raging inside him. The first drops of rain started to pelt down drenching him in seconds.
Finally, he moved towards where she was sitting. Leaning down, he rapped on the window to get her to put it down.
Samaira obliged, arching an eyebrow in challenge.
 “Get out.” The words were gritted out through clenched teeth.
“No,” she snapped the word out.
“Go sit in the back seat.”
“No,” she said again as she settled more comfortably into the seat. 
“Sam, if someone sees…”
“Let them.” She couldn’t care less.
“Sam, please.” The plea was quiet, but it sliced through. “For my father’s sake.”
Her heart broke at the words. She swiped at the tear that escaped and rolled down her cheek. Without looking at him, she stepped out of the car and got into the rear seat. 
Raghav slid into the driver’s seat and put the car in gear.
They drove home in silence, each lost in their own tortured thoughts. It wasn’t long before her house loomed in front of them. 
They were almost at the gate when she spoke, “Are you happy?”
His hands tightened on the steering wheel. “Are you?”
She laughed. The mirthless sound echoed between them as Ahmed Chacha waved them through the gates. “You’re not going to answer any of my questions, are you?”
Raghav sighed. “What’s the point of this conversation? Discussing the past is going to bring us nothing but more pain.”
“Alright. Let’s talk about the present. Why did you come back?”
Raghav brought the car to a halt outside her front door. “I came back for my parents.”
“Never for me,” she murmured. “You left me without a second thought.”
Raghav, who was holding her door open, froze at the soft words. She stepped out of the car and around his still form. She wasn’t going to beg him for answers anymore.
“The thing is, Sam,” the whisper reached her through the violent noises of the stormy night, “You left me first.”

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.


First Prize - A Kindle

Second Prize - 6 Months Kindle Unlimited Subscription

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Thursday, 5 December 2019

Cover reveal: SAVED BY LOVE by Shilpa Suraj

~ Cover Reveal ~
Saved by Love 
by Shilpa Suraj

About the Book:

They meet under impossible circumstances.

She is kidnapped by terrorists blackmailing her father, a Supreme Court Judge. He leads the team sent to rescue her. 

Trekking to safety through Ladakh... They are in danger of falling in love. But, Lt. Col. Arjun Rathod knows that Naina Ahuja, engaged to politics' rising star, is not meant for him.

Forever changed by her trauma, Naina walks out of her controlling family and forges a new life.

And then, she meets Arjun again. But this time, he is engaged to someone else.

Can they save their love or is it too late?

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:

Tuesday, 12 November 2019

Book Feature: THE SINNERS by Sourabh Mukherjee

The Sinners by Sourabh Mukherjee

~ Release Day Blitz ~

12th November

The Sinners by Sourabh Mukherjee

About the Book:

Vikram Oberoi is found dead in his penthouse. A few hours ago, his involvement in a sex scandal in NexGen Technologies made headlines across the world.

Who is behind the sinister conspiracy that destroyed Vikram Oberoi, the philandering India Head of NexGen? Rivals within and outside the firm? One of his many jilted lovers or the miffed wife? A mysterious conspirator laying out honey traps to sabotage his plans? Or, is it the ghost of a sinful past that continues to haunt the Oberois?

The Sinners is a fast-paced thriller with a shocking twist that unravels against the backdrop of corporate warfare, illicit relationships and ruthless seduction games.

Book Links:

Read an Excerpt:
Agastya picked up the call from a private number after the third
ring, taking his eyes off the monitor in front of him.

“Is this Agastya Bakshi?”

“Yes… who’s this?”

“Agastya, my apologies for calling you late. I assure you this won’t
take too long. But, we need to talk in private. Where are you right now?” The
male voice at the other end of the line sounded authoritative. Agastya could
not recall having heard the voice earlier.

Agastya looked around the near-empty office and said, “I am at
work, but we can talk. Not too many people around at this time of the night.” His
curiosity, by this time, was at its peak.

It was past eleven. It was the third time that week that Agastya had
to work through the night. Hired a couple of years back, his work as an engineer
in the Network and Systems Division of NexGen kept him rooted in front of
computer screens through his days and very often, his nights. Agastya did not
have much of a social life. A clumsy desk littered with pizza crumbs, empty cartons
and soda cans, and a paunch growing at an alarming rate – that was what his life
had been reduced to. But, he did not complain. Agastya loved his job.

“Great! Then let’s talk business. I’m sorry I cannot disclose my
name. I belong to a private investigation agency that’s currently looking into
the dealings of the company you are working for. There are reports of certain
financial irregularities in the business.”

Agastya sat up straight in his chair.

“Okay! But, what - what do you want from me?” Agastya asked tentatively. “I work in Network and Systems. I
don’t think you have the right number!”

“Agastya, I know who I am talking to,” there was an almost
imperceptible hint of annoyance in the voice of the man at the other end of the
line. He went on, “We need access to the e-mail accounts of some of the top
guys in your company to check their correspondences. And I’ve been told that you
are the right man for the job.”

Agastya took a sip of the cola that had already gone flat.

“Why - why me? You can
speak to my Manager in the morning. He -“

The voice at the other end of the line did not let him finish.

“Agastya, this is a covert operation and we are a private agency.
We cannot turn up at your office with an order to gain access to these
accounts. Also, right now, we’re not sure how many of the big guys are involved
and in what ways. For all you know, your boss – the Systems Manager you are
referring to - might as well be a party! Let’s not forget that, he has access
to all records of transactions. We do not want anyone getting alert and
tampering with the data we are looking for. We cannot risk exposure. It’ll take
us some time to complete the basic investigation. And I’d really appreciate
your cooperation while we are at it. Once we have enough evidence at our
disposal, we will make this official.”

Agastya thought for a few minutes. The whole thing could be a
hoax, for all it’s worth!

“Look… how do I trust you?”

“I knew you’re going to ask, Agastya. We’ll be completely
transparent with you. One of my agents will get in touch with you. You’ll be
working with her. I want you to hand over the details to her in person. This is for reasons of
safety. And also, to make sure that you put faces to names. We want to win your
trust and make sure that you are
comfortable working with us because, as I said, this investigation isn’t going
to get over in a day. We’ll need to work together for a while.”

“I - I’ll need to think this through. What’s in it for me?”

“We’ll most certainly compensate for your time and your
cooperation. And I can assure you that, you will have no reason to complain
about the money. Don’t worry about that,” the voice sounded reassuring. Agastya
did a quick mental calculation of the remaining EMIs for his new car. Almost at
the same time, the full front-page advertisement of the upcoming apartment complex
in South Mumbai flashed before his eyes.

The voice continued, “So I gather we’re good to go here, right?”

Agastya mumbled an uncertain “Well…”

The voice did not seem to care.

“Thanks for your co-operation, Agastya. Ruchika will get in touch
with you shortly. Have a good rest of the night at work.” The man hung up.

Agastya looked disbelievingly at his phone. Agastya wondered if he
should call someone and discuss. The next moment, he decided against it. The
man did sound like he meant business. And, in any case, Agastya was the one in
charge. He was the one who had access to the data the agency was asking for. He
was willing to give it a shot if the money was good. If, at any point in time,
he had any reason to doubt the authenticity of the agency, he could always step
back. Maybe even report the guy to appropriate authorities. He could always
make an honest confession.

He put the phone down on his desk and went back to monitoring the
data backup jobs. In a couple of minutes, his phone buzzed.

“Hey, this is Ruchika” – said the Whatsapp message.

About the Author:
Sourabh is the author of two psychological thriller novels The Colours of Passion: Unravelling Dark Secrets behind the Limelight (Readomania) and  In the Shadows of Death: A Detective Agni Mitra Thriller (Srishti Publishers and Distributors); Romance Shorts, a collection of dark-romance short stories; a 2-part series Beyond 22 Yards (Srishti Publishers and Distributors) on stories of Love and Crime from the world of cricket and a 7-part series of short stories titled It’s All About Love (Srishti Publishers and Distributors). The titles in the series are The Gift, The Cookery Show and a Love Story, A Special Day, Masks, An Autumn Turmoil, The Hunt, The Death Wish.

A keen observer of human behaviour and cultural diversities, Sourabh loves travelling and has travelled widely across five continents. An avid reader of fiction, Sourabh is equally passionate about photography, movies and music.

Connect with the Author:


A Paperback Copy of The Sinners by Sourabh Mukherjee.

Open till 25th November, 2019
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, 28 October 2019

Book feature: ANYBODY WANT TO PLAY WAR by Tommy B. Smith

book cover, Anybody Want to Play WAR by Tommy B. Smith, fictionAnybody Want to Play WAR?
Brutal injuries can leave scars.
As the teenage survivor of a savage dog’s rampage, it’s a lesson Bryce Gallo will never forget.
Struggling to cope with his damaged appearance, along with a newfound fear of dogs and mounting anxieties at home and school, he flees his suburban home into the moonlit streets of St. Charles.
Along the roads of suburbia and through the shadowed heart of the city, he encounters Wheels, a maintenance worker for a series of apartment buildings; Paloma, known to some by the moniker of Lady Luck; and a woman in a dark house who is, as far as Bryce can fathom, like no one else he has met before.
His new life is not without obstacles or enemies, he learns. The future is a battlefield. Fire and smoke loom on the horizon, and his dangerous course may see the lives of his family and friends forever changed.

Buy Links  >>      Bookish      Amazon      Barnes and Noble

For several seconds, Bryce Gallo stared back at the dog until it shot toward him and lunged. 
It drove him to the street on his back. With a flurry of spittle, its teeth latched into his face, digging in deep. The beast fought to rip the flesh away. 
Bryce’s senses spun. He struggled for survival, pummeling the dog with his arms, pushing against the daze consuming him. Grinding its teeth in, the hound wrenched its head back. 
Bryce’s flesh tore. He gasped. Blood, tears, and canine saliva leaked down his face. 
It required a true effort of will to cram his hand into his right pocket, withdraw the pocketknife, and unfold its four-and-a-half inch stainless steel blade. Desperate, he stabbed it deep into the dog’s rage-quivering neck. 
The dog reeled, grunted, and squealed. Its jaws slipped free. The canine staggered aside and darted across the street. 
With a screech of brakes and a blasting horn, a white Cadillac struck the dog and smeared it across the street in a mess of red, white, and brown. 
The hound’s death broke the fog of fear stalling everyone around. A woman screamed. Her boy stood transfixed. 
A diminutive older man shouted, “Call an ambulance!” 
Bryce pressed his hands against his bleeding face. It hurt, it burned, and that was his base assessment of the pain through his shock. Blood seeped between his fingers. He couldn’t restrain a choked cry. Wild dizziness consumed him. 
The hard street, the blood, and the pain fell away in another instant, swallowed by minutes and hours of incomprehension. 

About the Author
Tommy B. Smith is a writer of dark fiction, award-winning author of The Mourner's Cradle, Poisonous, the short story collection Pieces of Chaos, and the new coming of age novel, Anybody Want to Play WAR?
His presence currently infests Fort Smith, Arkansas, where he resides with his wife and cats.
More information can be found on his website at

Monday, 16 September 2019

COVER REVEAL!! The Last Gryphon by Linzé Brandon

Pre-order links:   SMASHWORDS     B&N      KOBO    Apple Books 
Release date: 29 September 2019

book cover image, The Last Gryphon by Linzé Brandon, fiction, romance
War destroyed everything they loved when the oldest race in the universe, had no answer for the machines that ravaged their new home planet, Xyridia.
The last words of their queen sent Galen and Richard on an impossible quest to find the Lost Gryphene to save their people.
But destiny had different plans for the two men when they crossed paths with the people of Zo'en and Xa'an.

Release date: 29 September 2019
Get your copy @  SMASHWORDS    B&N    KOBO   Apple Books

Friday, 13 September 2019

Book Feature: JUSTICE GONE by N. Lombardi Jr

About the Book:

When a homeless war veteran is beaten to death by the police, stormy protests ensue, engulfing a small New Jersey town. Soon after, three cops are gunned down.

A multi-state manhunt is underway for a cop killer on the loose. And Dr. Tessa Thorpe, a veteran's counselor, is caught up in the chase.
Donald Darfield, an African-American Iraqi war vet, war-time buddy of the beaten man, and one of Tessa's patients, is holed up in a mountain cabin. Tessa, acting on instinct, sets off to find him, but the swarm of law enforcement officers gets there first, leading to Darfield's dramatic capture.

Now, the only people separating him from the lethal needle of state justice are Tessa and ageing blind lawyer, Nathaniel Bodine. Can they untangle the web tightening around Darfield in time, when the press and the justice system are baying for revenge?

Book Links:

Goodreads * Amazon


Winner of Three Awards:

2019 American Fiction Award
National Indie Excellency Award - Best Legal Thriller of 2019
Silver Medal Winner 2019 - Readers' Favorites Awards
Chosen by among their list of 10 Gripping and Intelligent Legal Thrillers

Reviews for Justice Gone:

The courtroom scenes are wonderfully written...the characters are well described and the author paints a picture of each in the mind of the reader...Strong plot, strong characters and a strong writing style that I really enjoyed. This one is a definite "thumbs-up." Strongly recommend! I look forward to reading additional works by N. Lombardi, Jr.
~Kim M Aalaie, Author's Den

One of my favorite suspense novels of the year. It will make you question the legal system.
~The Eclectic Review

The courtroom action is excellent, trimmed to the most gripping parts of the trial, with plenty of emotional impact...a fairly realistic portrayal of the way small-town US society works...a fast-moving story with plenty of dramatic moments, and a big twist in the final pages.
~Crime Review 

Read an Excerpt:

“Welcome, Dr. Thorpe. Meet our investigator,” Bodine said, obviously referring to the good-looking young man wearing a white short-sleeved shirt and baggy khakis.
He leaned over and offered his hand for Tessa to shake.
“Michael Bodine.”
“Ah, I should have known…I can see the resemblance.” “Handsome, ain’t he?” the elder Bodine quipped. “Keeping it all in the family, are we?” Tessa fired back.
“If you want loyalty in this business, leave alone reliability, that’s the way to go.”
The old man straightened out the recliner to a sitting position, with the footrest retreating inside the bottom with a muffled clang. “Well, we got everything the DA has to
offer: arrest report, scene forensics, autopsy and ballistics…we were just about to discuss the witness list. Your arrival was good timing.”
“What about Donald’s alibi? Did you get a hold of that bartender in Allentown?”
Michael shook his head forlornly. “Disappeared, scrammed. Nobody knows where he went.”
Tessa nearly erupted. “What! Don’t you think that’s just a bit morethan coincidence?” Nat Bodine held his hand up, palm outward.
“Stop that right now. I understand your paranoia of the State after all you’ve been through in your life, but we’re not going down that road yet…we won’t win that way…and maybe he just took off on his own, not wanting to get involved…course we’ll be sneaking behind the scenes to see if anything nefarious was involved, but we can’t be wasting time trying to prove such a serious charge, we got other fish to fry, so let’s get on with it.” He turned his head, his white mane flopping as he did so. “Michael, check out that Hoskers woman yet?”
“Hoskers woman?” Tessa asked.
Emily explained. “The prosecution has listed a witness who claims she saw Darfield in the vicinity of Fratollini’s house just around the time he was shot.”
“I’m still on it,” Michael said. “Going back right after we’re finished here.”
Tessa wore a puzzled frown. “Who is this witness?”
Bodine was growing annoyed at her interruptions. “She’ll testify that she saw a large black man with a rifle slung over his shoulder walking in a direction consistent with Fratollini’s residence. That little shit of an assistant DA will probably goad her into identifying Darfield right there in the courtroom. Now, Michael, what we got so far?’
“Well, she wears glasses for one. She answered the door with them on. And not for reading, she took them off to read my card. And when she read it, she practically plastered it to her eyeball.”
“She probably doesn’t like bifocals, has two pairs of specs, one for reading. Good work, son. I would imagine there’s no golf course around there.”
“No, but there is a pool hall. That’s what I want to follow up on today, have a few chats with the clientele.”
“Atta boy.”
“I don’t think I get you,” Tessa said.
Nat Bodine coughed briefly before speaking. “It’s easier to get someone to admit they made a mistake than to accuse someone of lying, and it goes better with the jury, I might add. Okay, she saw a large African-American man. How large? Was he really the same size as Darfield? Was he an African-American, or maybe a dark Latino, a Tamil from India…and was that a rifle over his shoulder, or a golf bag, or maybe just a black case holding a pool cue… now, let’s stop jabbering and review how the State is going to present its case. The reason I brought up this Hoskers woman is that most prosecutors prefer to start with a strong witness, someone who could put the accused in the same general location as the victim.”
“I’m afraid I disagree with you on that one, Dad,” Emily said. “Why’s that?”
“I’ve studied Fiske. He’s very methodical, likes to go from A to B…he’ll start off with the detectives on the scene, followed by the crime scene forensic people, I’m almost certain. Then, to gain sympathy early in the game, they’ll call the widow, Mrs. Fratollini. And to keep the emotional aspect up, they’ll call the coroner to go over the autopsy.”
“How can that be emotional?” Tessa asked.
“They’ll show photos of the corpses.”
“Then come the experts: ballistics, and a psychologist to give testimony on PTSD.”
Tessa was alarmed. “Shit! Who’s this person?”
“Dr. Weibul. Know him?”
“Her. Yes, I’ve heard of her. You’ll call me as a rebuttal witness, won’t you?”
“We’re considering it,” the old man said. “You’ll at least assist me in preparing the cross-examination. But as a witness for the defense, perhaps someone else less involved in the public eye would be better, maybe your right-hand man, Casey?”
“I don’t think that’s a good idea?” “Why not?”
“I’m not sure. I’d better discuss it with him first.”
“You do that,” Bodine said, a bit imperiously.
“I’m sorry, Dad, but again I disagree,” Emily said. “I think we should eliminate the gender factor here, you know, woman expert versus man expert…we need another woman.”
“Know of any?” Bodine inquired.
“Yes, a few,” Tessa said, “not closely associated with the clinic.”
“Contact them right away, arrange a meeting with Emily.”
“Oh, look who they have here?” Emily exclaimed.
“Donald’s small arms instructor.”
“Well, they have the motive,” her father said, “so they need to concentrate on the means, namely, was Donald Darfield capable of picking off those men at long range with a rifle.”
“Should we get an expert to counter him?”
“No need. They’re gonna shoot themselves in the foot with this one. No pun intended.”
His daughter resumed her analysis of the State’s case. “After all the discussion on PTSD, they’ll put the motel manager on the stand. Remember the motel where Donald smashed the television? They’ll be building a foundation of violent behavior, and once it’s laid, they’ll go with Lt. Colonel Calvin Gerhard of the New Jersey State Police Investigations Branch to talk about Donald shooting at the police.”
“So,” Bodine posed, “when do you think they’ll put the Hoskers woman on the stand.”
“I think Fiske will save her for last, makes more of an impression, easier to stick in the minds of the jury.”
“Anyone else?”
“That’s it, Dad. Nobody that looks like a snitch here.”
“Don’t be so sure. It just means they haven’t found one yet.” “So who do we have?” Tessa asked.
“We have our own ballistics expert,” Emily said. “A professor at John Jay Criminal College, worked with the NYPD for thirty years. And, as we just said, we’ll need a PTSD expert…”
“Who else?”
Emily looked at her father with a hesitant expression, and although he could not see it, the pregnant pause that followed told him the ball was back in his court.
“There’s only one other person,” he stated somberly. “No, don’t say it, you can’t put him on the stand.”
“If they do finally come up with a snitch, I’ll have to. Only he himself can deny the lies.”
“Look, he looks like this big tough guy, but he’s very fragile, he could lose it, especially when the DA butchers him in cross- examination.”
“Not if I butcher him first.”
Tessa was afraid to ask exactly what that meant. An awkward silence ensued. Bodine broke it. “Let’s cross that bridge when we come to it.”
“Dad, I think we’re through now. I’d like to take Tessa to Jerry’s Home Cooking and have her taste that incomparable cheesecake.”
Bodine became animated. “I tell you, that cheesecake could compete with the best in the country, even those fancy places you might be going to in Manhattan.”
Tessa didn’t feel like cheesecake, but she did relish some time alone with Emily, intuiting that their discussion would center on Donald having to testify. “I’ll let you know,” she said, getting up in unison with Emily.

About the Author:

N. Lombardi Jr, the N for Nicholas, has spent over half his life in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, working as a groundwater geologist. Nick can speak five languages: Swahili, Thai, Lao, Chinese, and Khmer (Cambodian).

In 1997, while visiting Lao People's Democratic Republic, he witnessed the remnants of a secret war that had been waged for nine years, among which were children wounded from leftover cluster bombs. Driven by what he saw, he worked on The Plain of Jars for the next eight years.

Nick maintains a website with content that spans most aspects of the novel: The Secret War, Laotian culture, Buddhism etc.
His second novel, Journey Towards a Falling Sun, is set in the wild frontier of northern Kenya.
His latest novel, Justice Gone was inspired by the fatal beating of a homeless man by police.
Nick now lives in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Follow the Author:

Website * Goodreads * Amazon

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