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Albert Camus

Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Cover Madness Giveaway Hop International


Click HERE to see the list of blogs participating to this hop.

The hardest was to choose the prize, so we decided to let you choose any book you want up to 16USD (at the time you claim the prize).
The Giveaway is INTERNATIONAL as long as The Book Depository ships to you for free OR you want ebooks from Smashwords or Amazon

The winner will be announced here, on Mythical Books

Below are some of the covers we liked:
ATTENTION!
Some books can be in pre-order and some book will be published only in electronic format.

You Killed My Brother by Keith Rommel

Description:

Rainer is an affluent doctor and is involved in a car crash with a drunken man that’s a member of a local street gang. The doctor becomes a paraplegic and his brother, Glenn, is on the police force, and places his desire for revenge on hold to prove the judicial system works.

But when the drunken man is found not guilty, Glenn loses his trust in the system and kills the man responsible for paralyzing his brother. The gang responds to the slaying by targeting members of the police force, local business owners and his own family.

The two sides suffer casualty’s, one after the other, in this show of “for every action, there is a reaction”. The gang is dismantled and Rainer’s family is fragmented, giving a haunting sense that the need for revenge is toxic and how a decision to drive while intoxicated can dramatically change the course of many lives.

EXCERPT:

“If you make a sound, tonight is going to be the last night of your life. Do you understand me?”
The woman stiffened and dropped the music player to the ground.
“Easy,” he said, and clamped his hand down on her shoulder. “Take a breath and think about what I said to you,” he said, and kept her in place with ease. He twisted the gun in her back. “You know what that is, don’t you?”
The woman whimpered but remained still. Her breathing was heavy and her legs shook terribly.
“That’s good. Nice and easy,” Brick said with an expression of pure satisfaction. “Fear can be a great thing. It can help keep you alive tonight. I promise you that what I’m after isn’t worth your life.”
“Please don’t hurt me,” she said. “Take whatever you want.”
“That’s a good girl and I plan on it,” he said. “Now, I want you to reach into your bag and hand me your wallet over your shoulder. Make sure you don’t turn around because that is a price you don’t want to pay.”
He listened to the woman unzip her pocketbook and shuffle through some of the items inside.
“Nothing smart,” he said and dug the barrel of the gun into her side a little more. “And I don’t want you speaking anymore. Just do as I say and give me what I want. If you do that, I’ll leave you alone.
The woman handed him the wallet and he snatched it out of her hand. He quickly rifled through the money compartment and the sight of several twenty-dollar bills satisfied him.
“You see, this is all working out just fine,” he said, and removed the bills from the wallet and stuffed them into his pocket.
“Now that you’ve gotten what you wanted, please just go,” the woman said.
Brick threw the wallet to the ground at her feet. “And I remember telling you not to talk! Don’t ever cross a Sinner,” he said, and drew the weapon back and swung it into the side of her head. The loud thud of the metal hitting bone was accompanied with a spray of blood. The woman fell into a heap.
“Damn!” he said, and ran for Paco’s car. “I missed that feeling!”

 
About the author:
Keith Rommel is a native of Long Island, New York and currently lives with his family in Port Saint Lucie, Florida. Rommel is a retail manager and has enjoyed collecting comic books since he was a child (a hobby inspired by a teacher in grade school to help overcome a reading comprehension disability).

Rommel is the author of two books in his suspense/horror Thanatology series entitled The Cursed Man and The Lurking Man. The Cursed Man is coming soon as a major motion picture. You Killed My Brother is his newest release, moving him into the crime/thriller genre for an experiment.

Keith enjoys offering his experiences to other authors, writing several articles about writing and publishing, and is currently fast at work on the third novel in the Thanatology series entitled "The Valley" which is scheduled for a winter 2013 release.

He also has several other novels in the works. Besides writing, he also enjoys watching the New York Giants, scary stories, and spending time with family.


Event organized by As You Wish Tours

Excerpt and Giveaway Reckless Endangerment by Amber Lea Easton

Description:

Heroes come in many forms--soldiers who fall and rise, ordinary people doing extraordinary things, women who battle for their marriage, reporters who fight for truth and justice, and men who put it all on the line for the women they love.

Sometimes heroes fall.

Colonel Michael Cedars is a decorated war hero returning home from Afghanistan. Wounded, unsure if he’ll walk again, he’s not sure how he fits in civilian life, and he definitely questions if he wants to remain married to the feisty redhead, Hope Shane.

Hope’s never been one to play it safe. She met the Colonel while working as a war correspondent, fell in love with the man in uniform, watched him get blown up, and isn’t willing to give up on him now.

Back in Denver, Colorado, she’s working as an investigative reporter who becomes entangled in a human trafficking story. As the danger of her story intensifies, Hope and Michael are tested more than they ever imagined. Will Michael be able to see beyond what he’s lost to embrace what remains? Is he still the man she married or has he become a liability that could get her killed? Is he still the hero she claims him to be? Will her reckless pursuit of justice endanger the life they’ve pieced together
.

EXCERPT:
 
“I can’t do this on my own,” she said so quietly he wondered if she’d actually spoken.  She sat on the edge of the bed, her face pale and eyes full of unshed tears.  “I’m faking it every day.  Please, Michael, I don’t know whether I should smack you, scream at you or kiss you to bring you back.”

“Don’t cry for me.” Seeing her like this threw him off.  He preferred the irreverent spitfire who would go toe-to-toe with him any day.  He’d wanted to spare her pain, but it was obvious he had inflicted more. 

 “It was never hard for us, not even in a war zone.  We met and—wham—that was that. We made it work.”

He leaned back in his chair and stared at her.  She wore a black dress that rose up on her thigh when she crossed her legs.  Black leather boots went to her knees.  Hair cascaded around her shoulders, lush lips frowned and eyes glistened.

“You’re not okay, are you?” he asked. “Despite your badass looks, you haven’t healed, have you?  Have you talked to anyone or just stayed in perpetual motion?”

“What do you think?”  Her lips twisted in a self-deprecating grin.

“I think we’re too much alike.”  He grinned despite the circumstances. 

“I wouldn’t presume to feel the same as you do.” She dragged the back of her hand across her cheek without meeting his gaze.  “Things happened that you don’t know about...and now isn’t the right time...but you’re right that I understand you.”

He nodded slowly, not taking his gaze from her face.  Anger long gone, heartache remained.  All words sounded inadequate in his brain.  He wondered what had happened that she hadn’t written about, wondered if he would ever know.  Sorrow clung to her.  He had not only failed as a husband, but also as a friend. 

They had once been the best of friends.

“What do we know about being married?” she asked, her gaze focused on a distant spot on the tiled floor.  “Maybe you’re right.  I’m a mess.  You’re a disaster.  Neither one of us is being honest.”  She met his gaze.  “We’re just a couple of liars who enjoyed the danger of sneaking around in a war zone.  We’re the good story without a happy ending that we’ll think about when we’re old and alone.”

He winced.  He deserved that. Hell, he’d been singing the same song.  It felt like a boulder crushed his chest as he waited for the final blow.


About the author:
Amber Lea Easton is a multi-published cross genre author of romantic suspense, action adventure, mystery thrillers and new adult (coming in summer 2013). Her current releases cross all boundaries and appeal to a wide audience. If you love a clever plot, action that will leave you breathless, riveting characters and sexy love scenes, her books will appeal to you. "Smart is sexy," Easton says, which is why she focuses on smart heroines who always have a lot to lose yet find the courage to face their fears to overcome adversity. She's an avid reader of all genres or "whatever turns her on in the moment".



Easton grew up in Hartford, South Dakota, where she spent her time daydreaming of big adventures over the horizon under a giant blue South Dakota sky. Now living in Colorado, she's an avid traveler who incorporates her real life travels into her novels as much as possible (minus the illegal activities her characters become immersed in--she swears). To her, setting is another character in the novel and often serves as an inspiration. Love is her motivation for all things--whether it be writing, traveling, playing with her dogs or hanging with her two teenagers--if it's not done with love, then what's the point?

Tour schedule

Author's Giveaway
Must be 18 years of age or older to enter

Excerpt and Giveaway River Valley series by Tess Thompson

Description:

Author Tess Thompson assembles a colorful cast of endearing small-town characters and takes you on a journey that will make you believe in the possibilities of life - even in the face of overwhelming adversity and unimaginable grief.

Lee Tucker is the kind of woman you find yourself rooting for long after the last page is read. When her husband commits suicide, he leaves her pregnant and one million dollars in debt to a loan shark. Out of options, she escapes to her deceased mother's dilapidated house located in a small Oregon town that, like her, is financially ruined, heartbroken and in desperate need of a fresh start. Lee's resilience leads to a plan for a destination restaurant named Riversong, to new chances for passion and love, and to danger from her dead husband's debt as her business blooms.

A surprising mix of romance, humor, friendship, intrigue and gourmet food, Riversong entertains while reminding you of life's greatest gifts.


Description:

Just as Annie Bell’s reputation as one of the best chefs in the Pacific Northwest grows to new heights, she receives a threatening phone call from her abusive ex-boyfriend. Marco is out on parole and hungry for revenge, blaming her for his ten-year imprisonment. Fearing for her life and that of her young son, Annie reluctantly accepts help from Drake Webber, a cold and wealthy recluse hiding a dark history of his own. Supported by the gang of misfits from their restaurant Riversong, Annie forges ahead despite her growing terror that Marco will appear at any moment and make good on his threats.

Author Tess Thompson reunites the colorful cast of endearing small-town characters from her bestselling novel Riversong and takes you on a journey that will renew your faith in love, friendship and the power of community – even in the face of seemingly insurmountable grief and fear. You’ll find yourself once again cheering for the residents of River Valley, especially the big-hearted and compassionate Annie Bell.

Escape with a blend of love, laughter, friendship, suspense and gourmet food while remembering it’s never too late for second chances.

EXCERPT  Riverbend

The tears came, unhindered and hot on her cheeks. She grabbed a paper towel and wiped under her eyes, taking in deep breaths. And then, there he was standing next to her. His hands twitched at his sides as if he wanted to touch her. She stared at his neck. There was a prominent vein that ran from his ear to his collarbone: a sign of a man who exercised a lot. He was freshly shaven but he’d missed a spot just under his chin. She smelled his aftershave, something subtle and old-fashioned with hints of lime and something else she couldn’t place.

“Please don’t cry,” he said, his eyes soft and sympathetic and pained. “I can’t stand to see a woman cry.”
“I’m sorry.” But then she cried harder, hiding her face in the paper towel. “I didn’t sleep well.”
“It’s all right. You’re safe here.” She felt him shift, almost as if he might put his arms around her, but then he went still. “I’m going to keep you safe,” he said, softly. “It’s the only thing I have left to do in this pathetic life.”
Book #3
She went cold. What did he mean? “Only thing left?”
He looked into her eyes. “Yes.”
“Why, Drake? Why are you hiding up here on the side of this mountain? Why did you leave your life in Seattle?”
“I can’t talk about it.”
“Surely you can trust me? Look at everything you know about me so far?” She said it in a quiet voice, like she was talking to a wild animal she didn’t want to spook.
“It’s nothing about you.” He paused, putting his hands in front of him like a shield. “You’re lovely.”
The vein in his neck pulsated. “But I’m not well. Not whole.”
Then he stumbled back from her, yanking at the collar of his shirt. His face went tense and turned bright pink. He moved to the sink and leaned against it. His breathing was heavy like it had been the afternoon of his anxiety attack. Was it another?
“Do you need a pill?” she asked, searching for the bottle she’d noticed on the windowsill last night.
“Yes. Please.”
She grabbed them and put one in his outstretched hand. He swallowed it without water but she poured him a glass anyway. “Come sit,” she said, taking his arm.
“Please. Don’t touch me,” he said, yanking away from her as if her touch hurt. “Please.”
“I’m sorry.” Her stomach lurched.
“It’s not your fault. I just. I just can’t bear it.” He didn’t meet her eyes. “I’m going to my room. Don’t worry about breakfast.”
And then he was gone. She looked around the expansive kitchen, the morning light soft through the windows, and felt displaced and uncertain. She stepped outside to the deck. The air was warm already, the sky blue and cloudless; it would be hot and dry. Alder was near the large fir, tossing a ball in the air and catching it in his baseball mitt. She called out to him and he raised his hand in greeting. How did one go from a happy ten-year-old to tortured man? How would she keep her boy from the same fate as poor Drake Webber?
“Ten minutes until breakfast,” she shouted.
“Sounds good, Mom.”
She turned to go back inside and saw Drake at the front room window, watching her. Flushing, she averted her eyes. But her hand twitched in his direction, just a flicker of a movement, as it had earlier. What was this—an instinct to touch, to reach out, to gather him into an embrace? And yet, even as she did so, she knew he’d be gone by the time she looked back in his direction. She was right. There was nothing but the sky and trees reflected in the great glass windows, making her wonder if he’d been there at all.

Tour schedule

About the author:

Tess Thompson is a mother before all else, and a writer after that. After honing her craft in theater with a prize-winning play titled My Lady’s Hand, her heart was called to a different storytelling medium: the great American novel.

She is currently working on an ambitious historical fiction trilogy inspired by a story from her great-grandmother. The first of these, Riversong (Booktrope Editions), went on to become #1 on Barnes and Noble’s Nook Book chart in October 2011. Two years after its release, readership of Riversong continued to grow, spending weeks in the top 100 Kindle bestsellers. The second installment, Riverbend, is scheduled for release in May of 2013.

In March of 2012, Tess was honored to contribute to Write For the Fight, Booktrope’s collection of essays reflecting on life’s past, present and future. All proceeds from the sales of this collection benefit breast cancer research.

Like her main character in Riversong, Tess hails from a small town in southern Oregon. She currently lives in a suburb of Seattle, Washington with her two young daughters – a card shark working her way toward the tables of Atlantic City, the other a princess in training – and their wild but lovable dog, Patches.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Live Long and Prospero by Scott Pixello

Description:

This darkly comic YA novel, set on a lighthouse in 1983, introduces us to the deeply dysfunctional Captain Church and his crew of social misfits, whose well-ordered universe is turned upside down by the arrival of a marine biologist, who has come to study the local puffin colony. This in turn leads to an encounter with a nasty gang of drug dealers, a surprising undersea discovery and a hamster called Steve.
 
This is a Young Adult novel with slightly more emphasis on the ‘Adult’ (14+) than previous books by Scott Pixello but not in the sense of being any more grown-up.
Think The Tempest meets Star Trek.

Please note, this is a novella, and priced accordingly.
Like Billy Crystal, Gromit and Boris Johnson’s hair, it may be a bit short but it’s still funny.


EXCERPT:

Church, the Lighthousekeeper, and Christine, the visiting biologist, have their first extended conversation while out on the lighting balcony. He has just been helping Jake, the youngest member of his crew, to read.

She picks up a pair of spectacles left by Jake and then frowning, holds them up to the light. “There’s no glass in these.”

“Yeah, I know. It’s a confidence thing. Makes him feel clever.”

She examines the book they were working on and tilts her head to read the spine. It is Lady Chatterley’s Lover. “You really think this is suitable?”

“It was always a popular choice at school.”

She picks up a second book. Crime and Punishment. “Are you a big Dostoevsky fan then?”

“Nah. Just read him for the gags really. What’ve you got?”

She holds up To The Lighthouse. “Thought it might be fun to read it on an actual lighthouse.”

“Mmm. Might take more than that. You ever read Edgar Allen Poe’s story ‘The Light-house’?” She shakes her head. “Nothing of any interest happens repeatedly until the story ends unfinished. The boredom of writing it finally killed him.”

She walks to the rail and takes a deep breath of sea air. “Don’t you ever get lonely here?”

He seems surprised by the question. “Can you hear that?”

She pauses for a second and listens intently. “What?”

“That’s the sound of my heart not breaking. No. I’m not really drawn by bright lights. Except this one. By the way, take care, it’s like looking at the sun or listening to Chris de Burgh- it’s best to avoid direct exposure. You notice the isolated location of lighthouses quite early on. Those ones based in cities or buried underground, are usually deemed unsuccessful.”

She gestures to a telescope set up on a tripod nearby. “May I?” He nods assent and she takes a look at the starry sky. “Ever think there’s intelligent life out there?”

“Out there? Probably. It’s down here that I’m not so sure about.”

“What’s that?” He follows the direction of her telescope, which has picked out a passing small boat. A figure waves and he waves back.

“Dave the lobster guy. You’ll never guess what he does for a living.” He looks at her intense blue eyes for a second as if reminded about what he’s been missing. “It’s not so bad here. Every month or so, me and Alf even exchange whole sentences.” He picks up his rather battered Dostoevsky. “Books can be very useful sometimes. They feed the soul. People always fall back on them at times of emotional stress. You know, birth, death, living on a lighthouse, that kind of thing.”

She picks up a homemade kite, lying by the door. It is a flimsy construction, made of coat-hangers and a piece of material with a crude round face painted on it. Under the picture is a name, scribbled as if the masterwork has been signed by the artist. It looks like “De Burgh”. Church feels driven to explain. “Ah, what can I say? Boys with toys. Sometimes when it’s stormy, I come out here and do my Aretha Franklin impression. I’ve had a few direct lightning hits.”

“Mmm,” looking at Church’s antics like someone forced to share a taxi with a mental patient who just says they’ve stopped taking their medication. “You surprise me.” She pauses. “Hang on, don’t you mean Benjamin Franklin?”

“Ah, you haven’t seen me dance.”

She remains unimpressed. “It’s a known fact that there some recessive gene in British men that makes them dance like a cross between a mad polar bear that’s been kept in an excessively small enclosure and the British no. 1 women’s tennis player, waiting to receive serve.”

“That’s a bit unfair.”

“On British tennis players?”

“On polar bears.”

She moves back to the rail and looking out at the horizon, takes a long, deep breath. “It feels like we’re the only people in the world.”

“I hope not.”

“Do you long for company then?”

He shakes his head. “No but if we were, there wouldn’t be anyone to signal to, would there?”

“Ah, I suppose not.”

She turns back and realizes he’s been watching her. “How long do you think you’ll stay here?”

“Well, Cal’s on the next shift, so I’ll wait. I sometimes even sleep up here in the summer.”

“No, I mean more long-term. On the lighthouse. Is this where you’ll be 5 years from now?”

“I’m not sure where I’ll be 5 minutes from now. My life’s just one long line of exciting possibilities. This evening for example, I might take a tour of the Taj Mahal, drop in on my old friend and golfing partner Henry Kissinger or...”

“Yes?”

“Or I might just stay in and de-worm the cat.” He joins her at the rail looking out at the sea. Their faces are illuminated by the passing light. “So what really brings you here? You know, of all the lighthouses in all the world, you had to walk into mine.”

She looks across at the boat as it is gradually swallowed up in the gloom. “Well, I suppose I’d worked my socks off to get a PhD but still didn’t have a thing.”

“A thing?”

“Yeah, a thing. Something that would make people say, ‘Oh, there’s Chris Newman, you know, the discoverer of the...whatever.’”

“You want to discover something?”

“Nothing too grand. Just something to call my own. I looked at my life: the flat, the car, the job and I said to myself, ‘Is that it?’ So, I thought stuff it, I’ll go and do something different. There was an ad in a journal for a placement on a lighthouse and I thought, ‘OK, Why not?’”

He smiles. “Well, now you know.” He looks out across the skyline. “They’re looking for an excuse to automate all the lighthouses along the coast here. Efficiency is the name of the game. Lighthouses are like puffins: in mathematical terms, not that productive. But anyway,” he says, collecting his books together, “I can’t see that happening overnight.”

“That’s what they said about cars.”

“Yeah well we don’t see many of them round here either.”

“It’s just progress. Even Jake’s got his video player.”

“Mmm, I’m not sure that’s very convincing. He’s always sending off for some 9-day wonder. He insisted on paying out for a VHS machine. I tried to tell him, he’d be better with Betamax but he wouldn’t listen.”

“But who wants to live like this,” she points up at the lamp, “When machines can do the work?”

“Is that progress? If I were the Captain of a ship, I’d want to know that someone, a real person, was looking out for me. Wouldn’t you?”

“I s’pose. How did Jake end up here?”

“Things wash up here. He came here on a two-week work experience placement. That was two years ago. I’m not sure he’s passed yet.” He turns back from the rail. “Anyway, we ought to head in, you know. I can offer you the final tea-bag.”

“I’m honoured. Would this be an example of some of the famous Captain’s hospitality I’ve heard so much about?”

“Could be. If you play your cards right.” He gives the sky one last look before collecting his things together. “If you want, pop into my room. I’ve got something that might interest you.”

“Really? I was going to read while here.”

“You’re more than welcome but it’s likely to rain and beside,” he says, looking at her choice of book, “You’ll only depress yourself. Anyway, there’s supposed to be a storm coming in the next 24 hours.”

“Is that from the radar?”

He shakes his head and points at the sky to their right. “Big, black clouds.”

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About the author:
I’m a moderately-disturbed Brit who writes books. I’ve had seven books of non-fiction published with three different publishers under another name but as Scott Pixello, Luke I am Your Father came out last year and now I’m promoting Gothic Girl and Live Long and Prospero. I could tell you my real name but then I’d have to kill you and no-one wants that. I’ve got ideas for about another dozen novels so I’m pretty busy.
Unfortunately, my wish not to be rich & famous is somewhat at odds with conventional wisdom about how the Internet works, in which shyness is like Kryptonite to online sales. I don’t blog, tweet or even have a mobile phone. I’m probably the leader of a Luddite cult but no-one can phone me to tell me so. I am on Facebook though- I’m not a total freak


Event organized by Reading Addiction Blog Tours