Saturday, August 18, 2018

Short and Sweet Book Reviews # 282 - Barefoot in the Dark by Suzanne Enoch, Alien Intention by Cara Bristol

Barefoot in the Dark (Samantha and Rick Book 1)Barefoot in the Dark by Suzanne Enoch
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I met Rick and Samantha several years ago in books that were both entertaining and funny. He is a billionaire and Sam was a cat burglar. They met when she tried to steal from him. From there it was really a interesting romp as they played off against each other. I was happy to see them back but now that they are engaged some of the fun in the original book is missing. They are still a fun couple but with Sam out of the cat burglar business it took quite a bit of stretch to find the tension in the plot. The need to work in backstory also slowed the book down. Since this is book 1 I have hopes that the next book will return the nonstop fun to the series.

I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.


Alien Intention (Alien Mate, #3)Alien Intention by Cara Bristol
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Another nice entry to this series. I loved how Bristol built the tension as the story began. A mistake was made and it takes a tension filled and dangerous path to make everything work as it should. We get to see more of the characters from the first two books and there is more backstory and world building as the series progresses. It is a big surprise how Stormy and Romando make a really great couple considering Romando's past actions in the previous books. Now if everyone will just forgive a mistake in his past.  

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Tuesday, August 14, 2018

A Match for the Marquess by Lillian Marek - Blurb Blitz andGiveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Lillian Marek will be awarding a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Decisions, decisions…

Should Lady Anne Milhaven marry the wealthy and handsome young marquess, or should she resign herself to living out her life in poverty and disgrace, exiled from the world she was born to?

Should Philip Tremaine, the new Marquess of Penworth, redeem his honor and marry the proud and beautiful earl’s daughter whom he has unintentionally compromised, or should he prove himself as dissolute as his contemptible family?

They are not fools, but marriage is only the beginning. Now can they learn to work together and thwart the vile plots of their scheming relatives?

A Match for the Marquess is the prequel to the Victorian Adventures series.

Read an Excerpt:

“That’s enough from you, Anne,” Mrs. Craddock snapped. “I should not have bothered asking you. You’ve always been jealous of Corinne. Now go to your room, and the next time I see you, I want you to be wearing your cap. And what have you done to that dress? Put on one of the others. Remember what you owe to our charity.”

Penworth had had enough. His wife-to-be was not going to be disparaged in his hearing. And she certainly wasn’t going to put that hideous cap back on her head.

He stepped into the room and struck a dramatic pose with his arms outflung. “Beloved,” he exclaimed, “our troubles are at an end!”

“My lord?” Anne spoke uncertainly.

“I knew that once he saw you again, the earl would love you as I do. He has agreed to our marriage, and the wedding can take place at once.” Penworth stepped quickly to her side and drew her into his arms. “Oh my darling, tell me that you share my delight.”

Anne looked up at him, and he saw the shock in her eyes change to uncertainty and then to amusement. “Oh, my lord,” she said, “my joy is equal to your own.”

At that Philip gave a shout of laughter. She was indeed quick-witted, and he doubted that her aunt could recognize the sardonic note in her voice. He pulled her close and kissed her soundly.

About the Author: When she retired after too many years in journalism, Lillian Marek felt a longing for happy endings and stories where the good guys win and the bad guys get their just deserts. Having exhausted her libraryís supply of non-gory mystery stories, she started reading romance novels, especially historical romance. This was so much fun that she thought sheíd like to try her hand at writing one. So she took her computer keyboard in hand, slipped back into the 19th century, and began.

She was right - writing romance novels is as much fun as reading them.

Website: http://www.lillianmarek.com
https://www.facebook.com/AuthorLillianMarek
https://twitter.com/lillianmarek

Buy links:

https://www.amazon.com/Match-Marquess-Manners-Victorian-Adventures-ebook/dp/B07D4QHVFJ/
https://books2read.com/u/4AYwBe

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Monday, August 13, 2018

Short and Sweet Book Reviews # 281 - Sharship's Mage: Omnibus by Glynn Stewart, A Wolf Apart by Maria Vale

Starship's Mage: Omnibus (Starship's Mage, #1)Starship's Mage: Omnibus by Glynn Stewart


Magic sends the ships through space one light year at a time and Damien Montgomery has that kind of magic. Too bad he has no one to help him get a job on a jump ship. With that as the beginning an interesting story starts as Damien takes a job on a freighter with problems. This has it all - a little romance, a lot of danger, great characters, and a intricate plot. This is another story by Glynn Stewart. I am finding all of his stories very well written and fun to read.


A Wolf Apart (The Legend of All Wolves, #2)A Wolf Apart by Maria Vale
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Vale has a unique take on werewolves in the series she started in The Last Wolf. I was lukewarm about that book but wanted to give the series a chance with book two. I found it a little to introspective for my taste. While the main character does generate some sympathy I never really got into the story. It just seemed to really drag on and on without the action I looked for. Check it out to see. Maybe you will like it much better than I did.

I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.

View all my reviews

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Short and Sweet Book Reviews # 280 - Primrose and the Dreadful Duke by Emily Larkin, Entropy of Jess Anastasi

Primrose and the Dreadful Duke (Garland Cousins, #1)Primrose and the Dreadful Duke by Emily Larkin
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oliver and Primrose are two great characters. There are plenty of laughs as the two interact. This has it all. Fun dialog, great characters, a budding romance and danger that the two of them have to solve. Primrose has already been visited by her baleful godmother as have her two sisters who we have yet to meet. A nice place to start this new series but more fun if you have read the first series featuring the baleful godmother and the gifts she gives.

I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.


Entropy (Atrophy, #4)Entropy by Jess Anastasi
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have followed this series from the first book and looked forward to meeting all the characters again. This time Qaelan Forster gets to have the starring role in the story. It all starts when he brings the wrong woman home (wrong because she has the wrong father). From there he and the entire crew are off on another dangerous adventure. Turns out they have two problems they need to solve. First they need 80,000 clean credits and then they need to get face a pirate and get a ship. Great plot with interesting twists and turns and additional character building.

I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.

View all my reviews

Friday, August 10, 2018

Rescued by the Captain by Laura A. Barnes - Blurb Blitz and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Laura A. Barnes will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.
Abandoned at sea

When Ivy Mallory awakens; she finds herself on the ship of the man who rejected her love years earlier. While he was away working for the Crown, she embraced the London Seasons trying to forget him. Caught in the middle of a treason plot; she must help save her brother. To do so she needs to put her trust in the one man who can protect her. But can she protect her heart from loving him again?

Found at sea

Captain Marcus Thornhill never imagined he would find a lady floating unconscious in a lifeboat out in the middle of the open sea. But it wasn’t any lady, it was Ivy. Seven years earlier he rejected her love for a life at sea. As he rescues her he gets involved in a treason plot that will bring the war to their beloved shores of England. As he unravels the plot he is unable to deny his desire for her. Is he too late in saving her and the love he has for her?

Read an Excerpt:

As she was digging through the trunk her hand brushed across a book. Ivy pulled it out and realized that it was a book of poems that she had lost around the time Marcus left. She opened the first page and saw her name written across the page as she always did with her books. Flipping through the book, she noticed the pages that she had turned down at the corners of her favorite poems. The pages were worn and had been handled many times. Marcus must have read the book a lot. She came to the back cover of the book where a red rose lay resting against a poem that was handwritten in. The poem was written in Marcus’s handwriting inside the back cover. The title of the poem was:

Ivy My Love

Your love is like a vine
Forever clinging to my heart
It tangles up in between my jagged thorns
I try to break apart
To free myself from your love
But you have grown so heavy in my thoughts
I will let you go for now
For you need to grow wild and free
But I will return to you with my love
And our love will cling forever between the ivy and the
Thorns


A tear slowly slid down Ivy’s face, followed by more. Ivy glided her fingers across the words on the page, feeling the power of them down to her soul. She wanted to ask Marcus about the poem but knew that she couldn’t.

About the Author:
I have always dreamed of being an aspiring author. I am making my dreams come true, one word at a time. When I am not writing, I am spending time with my family. I love reading books on lazy afternoons, and late into the night. Anytime really. Married 28 years to the love of my life and we have three wonderful children and two sweet grandbabies. Besides writing, I have always wanted to travel. In the last few years we have gotten our passport stamped in England and Scotland. We are hoping to add Italy to the list soon.

Website: http://www.lauraabarnes.com
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/lauraabarnes
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16332844.Laura_A_Barnes
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorLauraA.Barnes/
Lulu: http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/lauraabarnes
Twitter: https://twitter.com/labarnesauthor
Book+Main Bites: https://bookandmainbites.com/LauraABarnes
Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/laura-a-barnes

Rescued By the Captain – Sale Links

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.com/Rescued-Captain-Laura-Barnes-ebook/dp/B01NCWCDP7
Kobo Link: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/rescued-by-the-captain https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/rescued-by-the-captain/id1194175441?mt=11
Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/rescued-by-the-captain-laura-a-barnes/1125516477?ean=9781365606502
Lulu Link: http://www.lulu.com/shop/laura-a-barnes/rescued-by-the-captain/ebook/product-23023095.html
Google: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Laura_A_Barnes_Rescued_By_the_Captain?id=XL7oDQAAQBAJ

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Thursday, August 9, 2018

Short and Sweet Book Reviews # 279 - Into the Black by Evan Currie, Witch World by Andre Norton

Odyssey One (Odyssey One, #1)
Into the Black by Evan Currie

My rating: 3 of 5 stars



This is classic space opera/ military science fiction. The Odyssey is on its first space journey and is the first ship of its kind. On it’s maiden voyage it picks up what sounds like a distress signal and goes to answer. The rest you can guess. Even though it is a common theme there is something for almost everyone in the story. There is a lot of technical explanation for the tech fan. There is a lot of action for the action fan. There are new worlds for the pure science fiction fan.

While the plot is predictable the action is interesting. The world building is good but the character development is a little thin. It could be because there are so many characters and most play a major role in the action. As a result more time is spent on the action each is involved in than on developing a well-rounded character.

When the action came to an end there was not final solution to the problem. In fact the last page of the book pointed to a much bigger problem facing everyone. I do want to find out what will happen next so I will be looking for the next book. I listened to this as an audio book and while the voice for the male characters was spot on the voice for the female left something to be desired.


Witch World (Witch World Series 1: Estcarp Cycle, #1)Witch World by Andre Norton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I loved the first part of the book where Simon Tregarth escaped Earth and came to a new world. The writing there lead the way to future fantasy and scifi books. After that I hit parts that moved to slow then parts that kept up a very fast pace. This is the book for my Science Fiction Book Club this month. We are reading some of the Grand Masters of Science Fiction and Andre Norton was one of the early authors chosen. I read the book years ago and it was interesting remembering how I reacted to the story then and how I reacted to it now. Then I was looking only at the story and today I was looking at how the bones of the story as impacted writing today. Norton was a trail blazer and Witch World was part of that trail.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Hostile Takeover by Cristelle Comby - Virtual Book Tour and Giveaway




Hostile Takeover
by Cristelle Comby

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

GENRE: Urban Fantasy

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

BLURB:

P.I. Bellamy Vale isn’t your everyday investigator. Moonlighting as Death’s earth-bound envoy, he specializes in the weird, wacky, and slightly unhinged. 

When a mysterious beast savagely mauls random residents of Cold City, the police assume that these are the killings of a rogue wolf. But experienced private investigator, Bellamy Vale, is unconvinced.

Ordered by Death herself to investigate, Vale has no choice but to obey, for his boss is not someone to disappoint—if he wants to keep breathing, that is. 

With friend and computer hacker Zian, nosy journalist Candice Kennedy, and homicide sergeant Melanie Ramirez by his side, Vale has no choice but to end the killings or face the wrath of the demon who holds his life in her hands.

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

EXCERPT

I was having a bad day.

The ugly thug facing me readied himself for the next swing. “What did you say, bastard?” His red-splattered knuckles were ready for the next round; my body wasn’t.

“I’m haffin a fah fay,” I managed to repeat through a mouthful of saliva and blood.

That made Julian Ragazzo, former welterweight boxing champ and top bodyguard to the city’s prime Italian Mafia family, smile. His wet beard glistened with sweat beads around stained teeth. Glad one of us was happy.

I took stock of the damage Ragazzo had already done. Broken nose, check. Split lip, check. Swollen eye, check. Broken rib, double check, and the list went on and on. It could have been worse. The injuries, though painful, weren’t enough to put me in the hospital. Sure, I’d hurt for a week or four, but I’d live to tell the tale outside of a body cast. I knew that, and Ragazzo did, too. This was a game we’d both played before … not that I’d gotten any better at it.

I caught a reflection of myself in the glossy surface of a cabinet door. My messy mop of brown locks was matted with blood on one side and the five o’clock shadow had a hard time concealing a fast-bruising chin. One eye was swollen shut and the other had a pale blue, haunted orb dancing amidst a sea of red veins. I was a mess, and not a hot one.

I closed my good eye and waited for the next blow. The bodyguard didn’t disappoint. A second later, he delivered a power punch and I saw stars. It didn’t help that I was tied to a chair and my already sore shoulders screamed in protest at the added strain. In a noise that only I could hear, my body cried out, ‘How in all the hells was this part of the plan?’ Fair question—it wasn’t.

In truth, there may have been a few glitches here and there. Like those two extra guards at the office building’s back entrance, plus that wrong turn I took on the fourteenth floor. Yeah, okay … the plan was just as screwed as I was.

Ragazzo followed up his haymaker with another kick in the guts. It would have ripped a scream out of me if I’d had any breath left for it. Instead, my lungs just took in short, choppy gasps I couldn’t control.

“Well, well, well … look what the cat dragged in,” taunted an Italian-lilted voice.

I recognized the lazy drawl and opened my good eye to confirm my suspicions. Sure enough, Alonzo Vitorini, Cold City’s resident wannabe kingpin, stood near the entrance in a dark-green pinstriped suit. Shit, looking at his ugly get-up hurt worse than any of Ragazzo’s blows.

Vitorini sauntered into the room, smiling as he noticed my stare. “Like the suit?” he asked, doing a little pirouette to show off this walking insult to fashion.

I wasn’t going to reply, but the second my eye caught sight of the finishing touch, a pair of black-and-white spectator shoes, my mouth kicked into gear on its own.

“Al Capone called,” I wheezed out. “He wants his brogues back.”

Vitorini laughed, the corners of his muddy-green eyes wrinkling. Not sure if he was laughing at the crack or the fact that he was going to kill me for it in another minute or two.


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

Here is Cristelle's take on Building A New World

Building a new world
I’m sure you’ve already happened upon a book where the writer didn’t bother to spend time on World-Building. You were thrown into a city that didn’t feel real, filled with little things didn’t add-up. A world where you felt like an outsider all along, never able to engage fully with the story. Not a very pleasant experience, was it?
World-Building does what it says on the box. It the process writers use to define the rules of their world. It governs everything from technologies, political systems, geography, religions, cultures, technologies, and more. 
It’s especially important in science-fiction and epic fantasy stories. And with historical fiction, it means getting your facts straight.

The Main Categories
Each category requires different skills and depending on where your strength lies as an author, some categories may be better suited to you.
Imaginary worlds
This category equals total creative freedom. You want flying horses, you can have them. People terraforming asteroids to build golf courses, no problem. Anything goes in an imaginary world!
This is the category that requires the most creativity on the author’s part. It is also the longest to develop. Every last detail needs to be addresses and it all has to fit together and make sense.
Actual locations 
This one is for all those murder stories and money heists. For the boy meets girl romance and the biographies. Whether set in contemporary times or in the past, these stories are anchored to reality. 
There’s no room for creative licenses here; you need to get your facts straight. What material did they use to make cowboy boots in the Far West? When did England start to use gas lamps? If the train leaves the station at 6pm and it averages at 60mph speed at which time will it reach San Francisco?
Alternate realities
This category is a bit of mix between the first two. It is the home of Urban Fantasy, Dystopia and Uchronia. It can be everything’s the same as the real world, accepts vampires exists. Or it can be everything is the same except Nazis won the war.
This category requires author to find the subtle balance between what’s real and what’s imaginary.

The Writing Method
There are two main currents to building a fictional world.
Outside-In
Just like Tolkien did with the Lord of The Rings, you start by creating the world. You draw maps, populate the world with various races, and create languages and political systems. Once you’re done, you bring life to a bunch of characters and give them something to do.
Inside-Out
You start with your characters, and built the world outwards. If your main character is the captain of a space ship, then it means that mankind knows how to build spaceships. What are they like? Do they travel faster than light? Who made the ships, was it the army or a giant corporate entity? What about the fuel and materials, which country makes them?

The Key Elements 
The main points that need to be addressed to fully build a world are:
GEOGRAPHY (locations, landscapes, climate, …) 
CULTURES (government, religion, laws, ethics, values …) 
SOCIAL CLASSES (divisions, social customs, …)
HISTORY (important battles, major political shifts, tensions, …)
MAGIC (limitations, rules, classes, …)
TECHNOLOGY (level, access, prices, restrictions, consequences …)

Showing Not Telling
This last bit is the most important of all. Once you’re done world-building, you will have a pile of data. It’s important not to spoon-feed all of that to your readers in the opening chapter. You don’t want them to choke on it.
The reveal of your universe needs to be slow and subtle. Not everything you imagined has to end up on paper. Focus on your character and how they see and experience the world. Ask yourself which details are necessary to make their journey understandable. 
It’s important to use a nuanced approach to reveal things as you go using the narrative.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~
AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Cristelle Comby was born and raised in the French-speaking area of Switzerland, in Greater Geneva, where she still resides.

She attributes to her origins her ever-peaceful nature and her undying love for chocolate. She has a passion for art, which also includes an interest in drawing and acting.

She is the author of the Neve & Egan Cases series, which features an unlikely duo of private detectives in London: Ashford Egan, a blind History professor, and Alexandra Neve, one of his students.

Currently, she is hard at work on her Urban Fantasy series Vale Investigation which chronicles the exploits of Death’s only envoy on Earth, PI Bellamy Vale, in the fictitious town of Cold City, USA.

Links:
Official Website: www.cristelle-comby.com
Twitter: @Cristelle

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

GIVEAWAY INFORMATION 

Cristelle Comby will be awarding a $20 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Labors of an Epic Punk by Mark and Sheri Dursin - Virtual Book Tour and Giveaway


Labors of an Epic Punk
by Mark and Sheri Dursin

~~~~~~~~~~~~~
GENRE:   YA Fantasy, Myth Retelling

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

BLURB:

Mac is an epic punk. No wonder: after his dad went off to fight in the Trojan War and never came back, Mac spent his childhood evading his mom's scumbag suitors—all one-hundred-and-eight of them. Of course, he turned out this way—a moody, friendless sixteen-year-old who blows off work, alienates everyone at school, and pulls pranks. But when he trains a flock of birds to defecate on the headmaster, Mac (short for Telemachus) goes too far. The administrators give him an ultimatum: prove that he's truly the son of Odysseus by doing something heroic—or get out. A school story that just so happens to take place 3,000 years ago, Labors of an Epic Punk is a tale of friendship and transformation, regret and redemption, and a reminder to us all that even heroes need to survive adolescence.


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

EXCERPT

No one on the field that morning had any idea that all Hades was about to break loose.

Well, one person did.

The stands were over-crammed with students, all chirping away about their summer travels, each one trying to out-fabulous the other. But Mac wasn’t talking to any of them. (No surprise there.)  Instead, he just stared at the empty stage in fist-clenching anticipation. For the entire morning, the entire summer, the entire two years he’d wasted at this gods-forsaken school, he’d been waiting for this moment. His moment of glory, of genius. The moment when he’d finally and irretrievably cross The Line— that hard-to-define boundary between tolerable and intolerable. Between a week of detention and expulsion. All he needed was for Headmaster Gurgus to blow on that shell.

Just when he thought he couldn’t wait any longer without throwing up, Mac heard the band play the opening notes to “Yielding Never,” Pieridian Academy’s absurdly overblown fight song. The Opening Ceremonies were officially underway. From his seat high up in the stands, Mac watched intently as the members of the so-called Grand Procession marched onto Garthymedes Field: the entire faculty and staff, wearing shiny red gowns and smiles full of phony reverence; followed by the honored students, also in ritualistic red, condescendingly waving at the crowd; followed by a grotesque, nine-headed Hydra. 

Lastly, waddling ten paces behind the Hydra, in all his roly-poly, four-hundred pound glory, was Headmaster Gurgus.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 I asked where are Five places you go for inspiration and here is their answer

Our Car- The book basically was born in the car; one summer, while driving to the beach, Sheri started musing about mythology, and we eventually hit upon a premise that became LABORS OF AN EPIC PUNK. In the months and years that followed, as we got deeper into the process, the car continued to be a place of inspiration. Because we wrote the book together, our writing process depended on conversations. Before either one of us wrote a single word, we talked things through; everything needed to be pretty well hashed out between us before we started writing. We found a great time to have these productive conversations was in the car during road trips. Here’s an example: we were in the car, driving to Massachusetts, and Sheri said, “I have an idea that you’re probably not going to like.” She wanted to include a chapter that took place a school dance, where two of our main characters would almost kiss. So, as our sons played their Nintendo DSs in the backseat, we started talking about this new chapter. By the time we got to our destination, two hours later, we had determined what was going to happen, why it was going to happen, who was going to be doing it, and what would happen afterward. And it all happened in the car.

The Beach- Our book takes place on a fictitious island—well, it takes place at a fictitious private school located on a fictitious island—and so, several key scenes happen on beaches. That’s probably because we draw so much inspiration from the beach. Not consciously: we’ve never plopped our laptop in the sand or anything like that. But just thinking about the beach or the ocean can put you in a good head space for writing. For one thing, the beach conjures up so many sensations—all the colors of the umbrellas, the smell of the salt air, the sounds of the sea gulls, the feel of the sand on your feet. Writers need to notice those kinds of sensory details. But more than that, the beach is all about letting go, about detaching from your real life. After all, it’s a place where you’re meant to walk around barefoot! That’s the kind of freedom you don’t often have as an adult. In the same way, writing requires you to get into that “barefoot” creative state. 

Library or Bookstore- Who wouldn’t be inspired surrounded by all those books? Several times, we would go to the Young Adults section and try to imagine what our book would look like on the shelf. Plus, a library or bookstore is the perfect place for this great writing activity: (1) Take a random book off the shelf, open up to a random page, and put your finger down; (2) Write out the word or phrase or sentence that you randomly selected; (3) Start writing!  Don’t think about what’s coming up next; write past the censor. The key is to keep your hand moving. Just write nonsense, if you have to. Allow one idea to trigger the next one. (4) Stop writing, after a predetermined time (say, three minutes), and re-read what you wrote. Most of it will be garbage, but there might be one diamond of an idea in there. (5) Identify that diamond and use it for the start of a new free-write. 

Self-Guided Retreat- We were almost finished with our final draft—or at least, we thought we were almost finished—but we knew we had some major things we needed to work on. So we planned our own writers’ retreat. We booked two days at a bed and breakfast in Rhode Island, and we used that time to work on the manuscript. We knew going into it that we needed to condense some chapters and expand others. So we used this time away to edit, write, read, re-read, re-write, re-organize.  And we talked about things—while in our room, or at lunch, or out on late morning walks. This writers’ retreat was such an essential part of our process, and we absolutely encourage all writers to exile themselves once in a while, to get away from the responsibilities of daily life and concentrate on their creative pursuits. 

The couch- This may sound strange, but we find a great deal of inspiration while sitting on the couch. After all, that’s where we spend time reading, watching TV, watching movies. Escaping into the world of fiction always inspires us.

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

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

For many years Mark, a high school English teacher, and Sheri, a freelance writer and blogger, wrote independently. No matter the writing project—newspaper articles, retreat talks, college recommendation letters, fan-fiction, blog posts on spirituality or 80s pop songs—they tended to work alone. Separate rooms, separate computers. But raising their twin sons helped them discover an important truth: All Good Things Come in Twos.

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

GIVEAWAY INFORMATION :

Mark and Sheri Dursin will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Labors of an Epic Punk by Mark and Sheri Dursin - Virtual Book Tour and Giveaway


Labors of an Epic Punk
by Mark and Sheri Dursin

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

GENRE:   YA Fantasy, Myth Retelling

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

BLURB:

Mac is an epic punk. No wonder: after his dad went off to fight in the Trojan War and never came back, Mac spent his childhood evading his mom's scumbag suitors—all one-hundred-and-eight of them. Of course, he turned out this way—a moody, friendless sixteen-year-old who blows off work, alienates everyone at school, and pulls pranks. But when he trains a flock of birds to defecate on the headmaster, Mac (short for Telemachus) goes too far. The administrators give him an ultimatum: prove that he's truly the son of Odysseus by doing something heroic—or get out. A school story that just so happens to take place 3,000 years ago, Labors of an Epic Punk is a tale of friendship and transformation, regret and redemption, and a reminder to us all that even heroes need to survive adolescence.


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

EXCERPT

No one on the field that morning had any idea that all Hades was about to break loose.

Well, one person did.

The stands were over-crammed with students, all chirping away about their summer travels, each one trying to out-fabulous the other. But Mac wasn’t talking to any of them. (No surprise there.)  Instead, he just stared at the empty stage in fist-clenching anticipation. For the entire morning, the entire summer, the entire two years he’d wasted at this gods-forsaken school, he’d been waiting for this moment. His moment of glory, of genius. The moment when he’d finally and irretrievably cross The Line— that hard-to-define boundary between tolerable and intolerable. Between a week of detention and expulsion. All he needed was for Headmaster Gurgus to blow on that shell.

Just when he thought he couldn’t wait any longer without throwing up, Mac heard the band play the opening notes to “Yielding Never,” Pieridian Academy’s absurdly overblown fight song. The Opening Ceremonies were officially underway. From his seat high up in the stands, Mac watched intently as the members of the so-called Grand Procession marched onto Garthymedes Field: the entire faculty and staff, wearing shiny red gowns and smiles full of phony reverence; followed by the honored students, also in ritualistic red, condescendingly waving at the crowd; followed by a grotesque, nine-headed Hydra. 

Lastly, waddling ten paces behind the Hydra, in all his roly-poly, four-hundred pound glory, was Headmaster Gurgus.

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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

For many years Mark, a high school English teacher, and Sheri, a freelance writer and blogger, wrote independently. No matter the writing project—newspaper articles, retreat talks, college recommendation letters, fan-fiction, blog posts on spirituality or 80s pop songs—they tended to work alone. Separate rooms, separate computers. But raising their twin sons helped them discover an important truth: All Good Things Come in Twos.

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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION 
Mark and Sheri Dursin will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Be Sure to Visit The Other Blogs on the Tour:

May 9: BooksChatter
May 23: Kit 'N Kabookle – 
June 6: The Avid Reader
June 13: Edgar's Books
June 27: T's Stuff  
July 11: Just Books
July 18: Author C.A.Milson 
August 1: Books in the Hall 
August 8: Jazzy Book Reviews 
August 8: Mixed Book Bag 
August 15: Bookaholic 
August 22: Locks, Hooks and Books