Saturday, February 17, 2018

"A Pirate at Pembroke" by Danielle Thorne


EXCERPT and GIVEAWAY
A Pirate at Pembroke
by Danielle Thorne

A Pirate at Pembroke by Danielle Thorne

A Pirate at Pembroke by Danielle Thorne is currently listed on Kindle Scout. Nominate the book by 17 March and, if it's selected for publication, you will receive a FREE copy when it's published! This book blast and giveaway is brought to you by I Am a Reader.


Description
A Jane Austen-inspired Pirate Romance
Sophie Crestwood is never going to catch a husband, and she isn’t even sure she wants one. Her father is a gossip, her mother always has her nose in a book, and little Jack has shamefully been dismissed from boarding school. Worst of all, a pirate moves next door into Pembroke Hall!
When Sophie’s sent to a matchmaking party at a neighboring estate, the pirate from Pembroke arrives and distracts everyone from the summer festivities. Unguarded, her feelings about the mysterious Captain Murdock bloom into a trusted friendship that Sophie fears may come to mean much more than anyone would ever suspect. Keeping company with a reputed pirate is one thing but falling in love with him could ruin the eccentric Crestwood family for good.


Excerpt
The sad sonata continued its siren’s call. It echoed a passionate and haunting melody, just like the dark halls of Pembroke with its soiled paintings of aristocrats from long ago. Sophie examined the chamber doors through the gloom and decided the door to the second room on the left was slightly ajar with a dim light shimmering around it. She moved in silence to the small gap and caught her breath.
Captain Murdock stood in front of a languid fire burning beneath a marble mantel. One bare foot was balanced on a low, milking stool nestled up against a heavy, velvet-covered chair. The other kept time on the floor. With his cane leaning against the fireplace, Murdock stood balanced on his own. In his hands, a violin tucked underneath his chin swayed. It moved in time with his body as he performed a strange dance to the music. His profile in the firelight was sharp and clear. He stood slender and tall. In these private bedchambers, half-dressed in loose buckskin breeches and an untucked shirt open at the neck, he did not seem as rigid and menacing as before. From his dreamy stare, his thoughts were somewhere inside the flickering blue and orange flames. The reflection of the firelight made his pale eyes glow.
Sophie noticed his hair was undone. It hung far past his neck, with slight waves resting on his broad upper back on either side of his shoulders. She put a hand to her mouth realizing it had fallen open, and at the same time, that it was scandalous to spy on her host. She swallowed and stepped away. The music stopped in mid-cry. Her heart jumped in her chest, and for a brief pause, the only sound to be heard was her own loud breathing. She stepped back and pivoted on her heel.
Horrified he might have felt her examination, she strode down the rug-lined hallway as quietly as she could, but each footfall sounded like muffled thunder as she hurried back to the stairs. She reached the banister and slipped down the first step, but her shift snagged on something, and she spun about to free it.
Captain Murdock stood behind her, silent. He held a handful of her shift in his fist. She had not snagged it after all. Rather, he had snagged her. She jerked in surprise, but his hold kept her from falling backward and tumbling down the stairs. His other hand trembled as it balanced precariously on a carved dragon head at the top of his cane.
“What do you think you are doing?”
“I… I heard music and followed it.”
His eyes blazed with accusation, and it unnerved her.
“I’m so sorry,” she said in a choking voice. Her nose tingled again. She touched it with her fingers to make it stop.
“It’s not possible you heard music from all the way down in your room.”
Sophie took a nervous breath. He stood there, one step above her like a giant, her bedclothes gripped in his hand so tight it shook. She hadn’t heard him shuffle down the hall after her. He moved as silent as a ghost when he wanted — even with a cane. She found the courage to meet his penetrating gaze. “I did hear something from my room. Then I was in the hall.”
Captain Murdock waited for a long pause, while the dust they had stirred up in the rugs pirouetted in the air and into Sophie’s eyes and nose. “You should not be out of bed,” he said.
Sophie swallowed down her frightened apprehension. She tried to beg his pardon, but her lungs failed her, and she coughed in reflex. She covered her mouth with her fingers. “I’m so sorry,” she repeated between them, her cheeks hot with humiliation. She stared at the fistful of her garments he’d snatched, aware his eyes examined her from her straight, waist-length hair down to her naked ankles. With a jerk, he dropped her shift like it burned his hand.
“Go to bed,” he said in a quiet voice.
Sophie’s nose had not quit tingling and itching. “Yes, sir,” she said at once, but not soon enough to keep a sneeze from erupting. It came so fast and without warning, she had no chance to catch it before it doused him with all her rejection.
Horrified, she stumbled down the next step, thankful the old handrail held fast. When she glanced back, he was wiping off his shirt with a look of disgust.


About the Author
Danielle Thorne
Danielle Thorne is the author of classic romance and adventure in several genres. She loves Jane Austen, pirates, beaches, cookies, antiques, cats, dogs, and long naps. She does not like phone calls or sushi. A graduate of Ricks College and BYU-Idaho, Danielle saw early work published by Every Day Fiction, Arts and Prose Magazine, Mississippi Crow, The Nantahala Review, StorySouth, and… you get the idea. Besides writing, she’s edited for both Solstice and Desert Breeze Publishing. Her growing blog, The Balanced Writer, focuses on writing, life, and the pursuit of peace and happiness. Currently, Danielle freelances as a non-fiction author while waiting to hear from readers like you through her website. During free time, which means when Netflix is down, she combs through feedback and offers virtual hugs for reviews. A Pirate at Pembroke is her newest release. Her non-fiction book, The Story of Queen Victoria 200 Years After Her Birth, is coming fall 2018.

Giveaway
Enter the blast-wide giveaway for a chance to win some a $25 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash.

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This Week on Books Direct - 17 February 2018


This Week on Books Direct -
17 February 2018

This Week on Books Direct - 17 February 2018

Here's a list of some great articles you may have missed this week. Enjoy!

I Wrote A Book - Here’s What I Learned by Nils Ödlund for Mythic Scribes
Nils looks back on how he took his story from just another idea to a completed novella.

I Wrote A Book - Here’s What I Learned by Nils Ödlund for Mythic Scribes


To Kill a Mockingbird and Huckleberry Finn are to be dropped from Duluth area classes because of ‘uncomfortable atmosphere’ their use of racial slurs creates.

‘Hurtful’ Harper Lee And Mark Twain Dropped From Minnesota Curriculum by Alison Flood for The Guardian


The author, whose novel became a hit Netflix series, is no longer a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, which says he violated its harassment code.


Thirteen Reasons Why Author Jay Asher Has Been Accused Of Sexual Harassment by Laura Bradley for Vanity Fair


The author of Thirteen Reasons Why, the young adult novel about suicide that inspired the Netflix hit of the same name, has released a statement denying all of the sexual harassment claims against him.

Thirteen Reasons Why Author Jay Asher Denies All Sexual Harassment Claims by Zoah Hedges-Stocks for The Telegraph


Maze Runner Author James Dashner Dropped By Literary Agent by Hillel Italie for The Washington Post
Maze Runner author James Dashner, facing allegations of sexual misconduct, has been dropped by his literary agent

Maze Runner Author James Dashner Dropped By Literary Agent by Hillel Italie for The Washington Post


In its FY2019 budget, the White House proposed eliminating the Institute for Museum and Library Services and hundreds of millions of dollars dedicated to America’s libraries through the Library Services and Technology Act.

White House Budget Proposal Continues To Miscalculate The Value Of Libraries by Kathi Kromer for District Dispatch


A Reimagined BookExpo Is Unveiled by Jim Milliot for Publishers Weekly
After an extensive listening tour in which BookExpo executives met with a range of industry members, the organizers of book publishing’s largest trade show have added new elements to the event aimed at adding more value for booksellers.

A Reimagined BookExpo Is Unveiled by Jim Milliot for Publishers Weekly


Whoops! It’s a goof in a Hollywood production, and we congratulate ourselves on catching it. We all get a laugh out of bloopers we find in the movies, but when they show up in a novel we’ve written, they aren’t quite so funny.

Blooper-Proof Your Novel: How To Find And Fix A ‘Reality Violation’ by Jessi Rita Hoffman for Writer’s Digest


If you enjoyed this blog post, please visit the other This Week posts for links to more great articles.

Friday, February 16, 2018

"Wicked Charm" by Amber Hart


EXCERPT
Wicked Charm
by Amber Hart

Wicked Charm by Amber Hart

Wicked Charm by Amber Hart is currently on tour with Chapter by Chapter Book Tours. The tour stops here today for an excerpt. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


Description
Nothing good comes from living in the Devil's swamp.
Willow Bell thinks moving to the Okefenokee area isn't half bad, but nothing prepares her for what awaits in the shadows of the bog.
Girls are showing up dead in the swamp. And she could be next.
Everyone warns Willow to stay away from Beau Cadwell - the bad boy at the top of their suspect list as the serial killer tormenting the small town.
But beneath his wicked, depthless eyes, there's something else that draws Willow to him.
When yet another girl he knew dies, though, Willow questions whether she can trust her instincts … or if they're leading to her own death.


Excerpt
“Who,” I whisper, “is that?”
Across the way stands a boy. He’s staring at me, wearing a twisted grin like he knows me. The wind ruffles his depths-of-the-ocean black hair. He’s wearing a dark shirt and dark jeans and I cannot tear my eyes from his.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]



Praise for the Book
“Atmospheric, lush, and razor-edged, this romance is the best sort of trouble - the kind that keeps you up reading all night long.” ~ Jenna Marie Thorne, author of The Wrong Side of Right
“When I started reading this it reminded me of Beautiful Creatures, however, this mystery was like nothing I've read before and I was hooked on every page. I love the swamp setting and the suspense.:” ~ Danielle, Chapters Through Life
“From page one to the end, Hart offers up another irresistible read that will keep the reader guessing and rapidly turning the pages.” ~ Heather Smith Meloche, author of Ripple
“It had everything it needed to be a very good book. An amazing romance, fast paced suspense and great character development. I’m going to keep a close eye on this author because this book was simply amazing!” ~ Lena, The Printed Girl
“Solid romantic suspense. I loved the swamp, the characters, and the Southern Gothic atmosphere.” ~ Outlaw Poet



About the Author
Amber Hart resides on the Florida coastline with family and a plethora of animals she affectionately refers to as her urban farm. When unable to find a book, she can be found writing, daydreaming, or with her toes in the sand. She's the author of several novels for teens and adults, including Wicked Charm, The Before and After Series, and the Untamed series. Rep'd by Stacey Donaghy of Donaghy Literary Group.




Links




"Gladly Beyond" by Nichole Van


EXCERPT and GIVEAWAY
Gladly Beyond
(Brothers Maledetti Book 1)
by Nichole Van

Gladly Beyond (Brothers Maledetti Book 1) by Nichole Van

Gladly Beyond, the first book in the Brothers Maledetti series by Nichole Van is FREE to 20 February.


Also available: Love’s Shadow and Lightning Struck, both ON SALE for only $0.99 each to 23 February.


This book blast and giveaway is brought to you by I Am A Reader as part of the Romance is in the Air promotion.


Description
An ancient curse, fractured at the birth of three brothers. Two strangers helplessly drawn to each other. A love story two hundred years in the making.
Claire Raythorn arrives in Florence, Italy, shattered, alone, and anxious to rebuild her life - preferably one without men. But she soon finds herself hunted and haunted – literally - when a mysterious stalker dressed like Mr. Darcy from BBC central casting appears in her photos. And only her photos. Who is this man? And what does his ghostly presence mean?
Dante D’Angelo simply wants to safeguard his brothers, despite the family curse that hounds his vision. But then Claire Raythorn walks into his life, untouched somehow by his curse. Soon, everything Dante thought he knew about himself starts to unravel, dragging Claire down with him.
Set against the lush backdrop of Florence, Italy - both past and present - Claire and Dante fight for a future together. But, first, they must uncover their shared past ...

Excerpt
I’ve always thought Italian cities are like guys I knew in college:
Rome—the hot frat boy I was dying to go out with (and I did, and it was awesome). But, turns out, everyone dated Rome.
Naples—Rome’s frat house roommate. The guy on no sleep and his tenth can of Red Bull. No one messed with him cause he knew people who knew people . . . catch my drift . . .
Venice—the dreamily gorgeous philosophy major. Brilliantly eccentric but exotic enough that no one quite knew what to make of him.
Milan—the second-year MBA student who was big on power-ties and power-lunches. Basically, the organized guy who held everyone else together.
And then there was Florence.
Firenze, to those who knew him.
Quiet and unassuming. When we first met, I wondered what all the fuss was about.
But Firenze . . . he was a subtle seducer. If I asked, he could talk for hours about art and history. But, generally, Firenze simply listened. Peaceful. Steady. Ready to shoulder my sorrows.
Firenze is the guy I never got out of my system.
***
I hit the ground floor and took two steps toward the large wooden front door.
How would the next few weeks play out? Like being a contestant on Survivor? The Great Race?
A male voice stopped me. “Just the person I was waiting for.”
I closed my eyes.
Nope. Things were shaping up to be The Bachelorette.
Honestly.
Pasting on my polite grin, which truthfully was more of a grimace by this point, I turned around.
“Mr. D’Angelo.”
“Dante, please.” He stepped out of the shadows at the base of the stairs. A window in the stairwell illuminated half of him. Even that half was huge.
Whereas I looked down on Pierce and was eye-level with the Colonel, I had to look up, up at Dante. At five ten myself, it takes a lot to make me feel short. But he somehow managed it. He had to be at least six four and linebacker-wide. Did he play football in high school?
His dark, wavy hair had been smoothly slicked back when he arrived earlier. But I had watched it creep forward as the morning went along until a section of it came loose, swinging down to kiss his jaw. My fingers itched to brush it back.
Dante was the type of man I had always had a sweet tooth for. Until I learned, oh-so-painfully, how bad for my health they could be.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“This is my first book by Ms. Van and I will definitely be reading more by her! She really did an amazing job of sucking me in! I got mad when real life got in the way of my reading time!” ~ Kathy Jo
“The thing I like about Van’s writing is that she builds up the love between hero and heroine in plausible increments. I think that’s why I always end up reading her novels in one sitting until the early morning hours; I know that in the NEXT scene the characters are going to finally realize their love. But then you get to the next scene and you simply want more and more. And I mean that in the best possible way.” ~  Sarah B
“Wow what a well written adventure. This book kept me on my toes from the very beginning, I couldn't figure it out and was really blown away by the creativity of author. The story line is brilliant. The love story was well done and characters believable and endearing. I'm so excited I get a whole family to read about.” ~ LoveBooks
“Witty banter, engaging characters, delightful story easily taking on a magical Italian adventure. And clean! I love that I can trust this author and not worry I'm unexpectedly going to be somewhere I don't want to be. All the surprises in her stories are good ones.” ~ Linda Maxwell
“I found this book to be interesting and different, so much history touched upon if only briefly in the past lives of the characters. Very well done.” ~ Elaine Littrell

About the Author
Nichole Van
Nichole Van is a writer, photographer, designer, and generally disorganized crazy person. Though originally from Utah, she currently lives on the coast of Scotland with three similarly crazy children and one sane, very patient husband who puts up with all of them. In her free time, she enjoys long walks along the Scottish lochs and braes. She does not, however, enjoy haggis.

More books by this author:

Giveaway
Enter the blast-wide giveaway for a chance to a $25 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash.


Links