Category Archives: Books by other authors

Books by other authors: The Battle is O’er (Book Five of The Blue Bells Chronicles), by Laura Vosika

Shawn means self and Kleiner means centered, one of Shawn’s (many) ex-girlfriends proclaimed. So begin The Blue Bells Chronicles, a tale of time travel, mysteries and miracles, romance and redemption, in an epic adventure ranging across modern and medieval Scotland against the backdrop of Scotland’s Wars of Independence in the 1300s.

Shawn has it all—wealth, fame, women—until the night Amy, his girlfriend, has enough and abandons him in an ancient tower. He wakes up in the wrong century.

Two years in medieval times, two years of fighting beside Robert the Bruce and James Douglas, two years of living with and as his medieval twin, the devout and upright Highlander Niall Campbell, working to protect those he has come to love, and perhaps mostly, his growing friendship with Niall, whom he initially despised, all work changes in Shawn.

Throughout their adventures, he and Niall seek a way to get Shawn back across time, to fulfill his desire to ask Amy’s forgiveness and finally be the man she always saw in him—succeeding at last in the middle of a fierce battle for Niall’s home, Glenmirril, against their old enemy, the MacDougalls.

Safely back in his own time, Shawn is steadily regaining all he lost—his career as a world-traveling musician, the son he feared he would never know, and finally, maybe—even Amy’s heart.

He can’t let go of the past, however, or stop agonizing over what happened to Niall and all his beloved friends, left behind in a fight for their lives. In his search for answers, hoping to find that all ended well, he learns instead of the dangers still lurking in fourteenth century Scotland: to Niall who will pay a horrible price for Shawn’s last deed, committed in Glenmirril’s tower just moments before escaping to the safety of his own time; to his own infant son, the subject of prophecy and an ancient letter predicting a fateful battle; even danger to the whole world as Simon Beaumont, known to history as the Butcher of Berwick, seeks to use his knowledge of the future to destroy it.

In this gripping conclusion to The Blue Bells Chronicles, Shawn faces the ultimate test. His selfishness once cost him everything. His newfound selflessness may do the same.

 

Books by other authors: Painting of Sorrow by Virginia Winters

I began Painting of Sorrow because I was interested in lost and destroyed paintings of WWII. Searching for paintings that could have been saved but were said not to be, brought me to the Flakturm Friedrichshain in Berlin, an anti-aircraft tower used to house a bomb shelter and a hospital as well as the paintings of the Kaiser Wilhelm Museum. More than four hundred paintings and three hundred sculptures were burned, stolen, or destroyed by bombs in the waning days of WWII. Did the Soviets loot the building before it burned? Or were some of the paintings stolen when the Soviet guards were inexplicably removed?

One such painting was called variously Portrait of Fillide or Portrait of a Courtesan, a work by Caravaggio. Client Simon Wolf brings a copy of the painting to be conserved by the firm where Sarah Downing works.

Is it a copy or an original? It’s Sarah job to conserve it but she wants to know the truth about the painting.

Sarah is a painter as well as an art conservator. Her mind reacts to situations, landscapes, and people by seeing paintings in her memory that describe them. Throughout the book, images of paintings also reflect her emotional state and her fears.

Early in the book, the director of the Art Gallery that is housed in the building where she works, frightens Sarah. Her mind brings up a picture of St. Jerome, an almost cadaveric man pictured in a desert, by Da Vinci. The taut skin of his face reveals the skull beneath.

Sarah escapes a killer with her friend Peg. On the way, they stop at a lookout over Mazinaw Lake. Casson painted the iconic Bon Echo Rock there.

Later, approaching the security of a remote cabin in rural Ontario, she sees the building as a painting by A. Y. Jackson, Settler’s Home and somehow felt safer, for the moment.

Her visions become darker and when she finds her new love Simon, beaten by her ex-husband, The Death of Marat by David, a nightmare of a painting intrudes on her thoughts. At the hospital, the controlled chaos of Emergency Room, by Fiona Rae reflects the roiling state of her emotions.

Much later, arriving to Simon’s home, afraid that all chance of a relationship with him has gone, she sees not his house, but Carl Schaefer’s Ontario Farmhouse, dark clouds looming over it, perhaps an omen for her future

I hope interested readers will search out the paintings mentioned in the book to gain a fuller understanding of Sarah and the events that changed her life.

You can find out more about Virginia here: https://ginny200.com/

Find the Painting of Sorrow here: https://amzn.to/2JPDaYd

A good example of author collaboration

The Bad Boy Billionaire Bachelors Boxset

A post by Emma Calin, contributing author

Last year, Romance Devoured, a media company focussed on romance readers, brought together thirteen authors and asked each of them to write a new story for a themed box set.

The authors were all given a free rein in the content of their stories – the only stipulation was that the heroes had to be hot and wealthy, very wealthy but flawed. Real bad boys. It would be for the sassy heroines to get under their skins, tame them and turn them round.

In February 2018 – on St Valentine’s Day of course – they announced the launch of a brand new romance collection – The ‘Bad Boy Billionaire Bachelors Boxset.’ If you’re excited by a genuine bargain and enjoy steamy love stories then this anthology of thirteen brand new full length novels should be on your reading list.

There’s something for everyone in this set. A billionaire proposes to a barista to get an image makeover before he loses his company and fortune along with it. A secret masquerade hookup leads to complications with a new boss. A tattooed billionaire rocks a woman’s world and the bad boy’s desires threaten to scare her back to her humdrum single life. A rich banker fights for a traffic cop’s body and soul. The devil himself falls in love when a rookie reporter is sent to interview him. A businessman masquerades as a tattooed Harley rider to find his ideal mate. These stories and many more are included in this steamy, hot collection.

Don’t wait to read this set. It is only out for a short time before it will be gone forever! Priced at just $1.99/£1.49 and FREE on Kindle Unlimited, it’s easily affordable.

Authors included in this boxset:

Jeana E Mann
Julia Bright
Nicole Morgan
Elise Faber
Annie Young
Tricia Barr
Maggie Carpenter
Emma Calin
Aspen Drake
Megyn Ward
Angela Kulig
N. Isabelle Blanco
Kim Carmichael

This limited edition collection of new and exclusive romance novels is guaranteed to melt your kindle. It’s available on Amazon worldwide until the 14th May 2018 on this link:

http://www.smarturl.it/BoxBatch

There’s a $25 Amazon GC and book giveaway running until the end of March to celebrate the launch:

http://www.emmacalin.com/giveaways

You’re sure to find a new favorite book boyfriend among our bad boy billionaire

The Vault by Brian Harrison

Why would a multibillionaire create a customized vault that is controlled by watch mechanics inside and have a self-destruct mechanism inside to destroy the billion dollars worth of artifacts inside?

Simple, because he can.

On paper, Sam Montgomery is your typical eccentric philanthropic pharmaceutical billionaire whom has literally mailed five dollars to everyone in the US so they can “pay it forward.” But what people didn’t know when made a rare public appearance was that he was announcing he had leukemia. And more shocking was that when he said, “I’d rather die than give my sister the opportunity to save my life,” no one even knew he had a sister.

Elena Diamante nailed the sit down interview – at his small home on the tiny island of Antikythera in Greece. She was only planning on getting the scoop about Sam and his apparently estranged sister but she was also going to be the first journalist to see inside Sam’s custom made vault. It was built using watch mechanics, so it was completely self-sustained, and only opened once a year. It was even rumored that if it were ever tampered with, everything inside would be destroyed in a custom acid.

Come to find out for Elena, there would be one item inside Sam’s vault that could save his life, or end it even quicker, it was just a matter of whether or not the vault would open in time.

The vault explores Sam’s family dynamics and how they inspired him to become the successful man he is. The story is also told using Sam’s own family photos growing up, as well as text messages and Facebook/Twitter. There are even hyperlinks within the novel as “Easter Eggs” for those readers that want to explore even more of Sam’s personal life, further blurring the lines of fact/fiction.

Silently in the night by Clayton Graham

A collection of tantalizing tales with more twists than braided hair:

Here you will find mystery, murder and mayhem – plus a moment of romance. All the stories will make you stop and think, even question your role in the world and the universe. Just what are we doing here, and where are we going? Easy questions with problematic answers.

This anthology of sixteen short and thrilling tales of unusual, extraterrestrial and conspiratorial stories is the latest compilation from Clayton Graham, the author of science fiction novels Milijun and the soon to come Saving Paludis. The characters in this eclectic collection are mostly ordinary people whose reactions to their fears and to unexpected events will have you guessing at every turn of the page.

This collection is intriguing reading which, among many other things, encourages the reader to:

Sympathize with a doomed husband and connect with an altruistic robot. Explore an isolated Scottish isle and touch down on a far-flung asteroid.

From the light-hearted to the darkest depths of the human psyche you would be hard pressed not to find something to like about Silently in the Night.

Many different visions of the future are within these pages. And as a bonus, there is an excerpt from the soon to be published Saving Paludis, which introduces the reader to two of the principal protagonists in this tale from the edge of mankind’s known universe in the year 3898AD.

If you love mystery with a hint of the paranormal, and the interplay of human foibles, grab this smorgasbord of short stories then get yourself a copy of Milijun, the mind-bending sci-fi novel by Clayton Graham.

 

Cathy Lynn Brooks, Not My Story to Tell

My journey through grief: loving and losing a daughter with bi-polar disorder

Cathy Lynn Brooks spent her career working with children with special needs, but despite her professional experience, it was still heartbreaking for her to witness the challenges faced by her daughter, Justine.

Justine always reminded Cathy of Annie Oakley. She was fierce and protective of the vulnerable, but she was also plagued by her own troubles.

At a young age, Justine was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder. As Justine grew up, she often made bad choices due to the traumas of her past and her mental illness. Through it all, Cathy never stopped loving her daughter.

In this revealing and powerful book, Cathy takes you back to the early days of Justine’s childhood and the events that led to her diagnosis. Cathy watched her daughter try time and again to change her life, amazed and awed by Justine’s persistence, courage, and compassion.

Cathy hopes that her daughter’s journey to a place of healing and peace will inspire others struggling with mental illness or caring for a family member with the same issues. She shows families that, while there are many obstacles on the road to better mental health, there are amazing joys waiting for you as well!

Amazon link:cid:E775FC0F-4CF6-4747-9EAD-1325827A662B@Home

http://smarturl.it/NotMyStoryToTell

Website link:

www.cathylynnbrooks.com

Brenda Mohammed’s book: I am Cancer Free

I am pleased to welcome Brenda Mohammed with some information about her book

Book Description:

Winner of Mc Grath House Indie Book Awards 2016 in the category Best Non-Fiction. I am Cancer Free – A Memoir, is a touching and emotional true story of a woman’s battle with ovarian cancer.

The killer disease threatened her life and financial well- being.

Her strong faith in God saw her through all the trials she had to undergo.

Five-Star Review of ‘I am Cancer Free’ by Brenda Mohammed.

I Am Cancer Free by Mrs. Brenda C. Mohammed is the poignant memoir of the author’s personal battle with cancer. Her faith in God and proving that ovarian cancer need not be a death sentence are what make this memoir a heartrending read. The author’s ‘never say die’ attitude, the decision not to give up in life, and finally being cancer-free will encourage everyone who has been diagnosed with the disease or who has suffered from cancer. The memoir recounts from the time of diagnosis the experiences the author went through during the treatment, her emotions, fears, finances, until the successful treatment of the disease.

It is a courageous story of survival, faith, and strength. 

The author chronicles every step of her journey methodically, without leaving anything out, making the narration very personal, honest, and palpable to readers. The presence of God in everyone’s life, a positive attitude, and the power of prayers run through the memoir. The author reiterates the fact that faith in God removes all obstacles in life. The conversational style of writing connects well with readers, making it easy for them to understand her journey. The author has also shared the poems she wrote during that phase in her life, where she again speaks about her story, faith in the Lord, and a Higher Power. For all those who are suffering from cancer and are battling the disease, this book is a must-read as it will give them hope, strength, and courage to fight the disease.

The book is available at Amazon: http://Author.to/BCM786

Biography

Brenda Mohammed, a former banker, is an award-winning, multi-genre writer and a cancer survivor. In 2013, Brenda wrote her first book, “I am Cancer Free”, after her near death experience with cancer. She wanted to tell the world that cancer is not a death sentence, but a battle that you have to fight and win. Her travel opportunities, thanks to her banking job, has helped Brenda with the creative process of an author. Her book “Travel Memoirs with Pictures: Exploring the world” is a travelogue compiling her picturesque travels around the globe. Brenda is blessed with a supportive family and acknowledges friends who have encouraged her throughout her life and her writing career.

Follow her on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/triniwriter/

Follow her on Twitter:

https://www.twitter.com/mirroe

Three Things Every Parent should do to Protect Their Children in Cyber Space

Online activity is second nature to today’s kids, but most of us with children didn’t grow up with the Internet. So it may be difficult to know how to advise them and monitor their safety online, especially when a lot of their school work and social life is centered on being connected. There is a lot that’s great about the Internet and the educational and recreational opportunities out there, but there’s also a lot that’s dark, evil, and dangerous. As parents, we need to help our kids make the right decisions and stay safe online.

In his new book, Online Danger: Protecting Yourself and Your Loved Ones from the Evil Side of the Internet, cyber security expert, Dr. Eric Cole, devotes an entire chapter to the ways that parents can safeguard their kids’ online activities. Here are some of his top suggestions.

Know What Apps They Use

Kids are not going to be as careful when it comes to downloading and installing apps that they want – particularly games. But just because an app (for phone or PC) came from the Google or Apple store doesn’t make it safe. Many of today’s apps – by default – ask for access to the device’s camera, microphone, and location services. This means that your child’s phone might be spying on him or her or making it easy to abduct them based on knowing their location. Review the apps on your kids’ phones, and together determine whether they still use the app and how the permissions are set.

Follow Your Kids on Social Media

Children should have the expectation that you’ll follow them on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. Make sure you all understand privacy settings, particularly who can see or share their posts and photos. You’ll want to check who has connected with your kids, and don’t be shy about asking about faces you may not recognize. You’d much rather hear, “oh that’s Joe from my karate class” than “oh, that’s just someone who asked me to be their online friend.” Remember that predators can be anyone they want online.

Talk Openly About Online Risks

Kids can’t be expected to always make smart decisions or foresee the consequences of their actions. That’s why, as parents, a big part of our job is to teach them these skills, encourage them to make the right decisions, and protect them – both from others and from themselves. Talking with your kids about online safety is an ongoing process that starts the minute they start swiping on your phone or tablet, and continues into young adulthood. Remember, monitoring your kids’ online activities isn’t “nosy” – it’s responsible parenting.

In addition to the chapter devoted to protecting our kids online, Dr. Cole’s book provides advice for anyone wanting to protect themselves from scammers, hackers, and predators. You’ll learn how these online villains operate and how you can safeguard your credit, identity, and personal information. Visit www.onlinedanger.com for more useful tips, videos, and purchase information. Now available on Kindle.

About Dr. Eric Cole

Eric Cole, PhD, is a recognized security expert with over 30 years of experience in consulting, training, public speaking, and expert witness testimony. A published author of seven books on cyber security, Dr. Cole is on the cutting edge of cyber security research and development. His career has spanned industry and government roles including CTO at McAfee, Chief Scientist for Lockheed Martin, and member of the Commission on Cyber Security for the 44th President

New book: The Sins of Maggie Black By Howard Petote

The following was written by a fellow author about his book:

Origins: An Irish Girl named Maggie

In 1968 the state of Missouri was blessed with the arrival of a baby girl, a one-year-old lifted from the arms of nuns in the west of Ireland. Her name was Maggie, and her adoptive parents— strict Catholics—wanted her to be perfect. But Maggie Black was not perfect, she was merely human—an earthy, feral child who one day realized she would never earn their love. Drifting into drugs, con artists and petty crime, she becomes a single mother stuck in the gritty world of door-to-door sales—dangerously tied to a bad man.

One muggy evening—while home in Saint Joe preparing for a sales jump—she endures an incident that changes her life. This incident opens my novel, The Sins of Maggie Black, the story of one young woman’s attempt to escape her past and dream of a better life. As she informs her little boy, “From now on it’s gonna be me and you—we’re gonna be a team.” Her journey will pit a fierce determination to succeed against a battered ego, a heart struggling to accept love and companionship, and a past that threatens everything.

I began this post with some backstory to introduce one theme of my novel—the mysterious and profound nature of origins. Starting with the fragile innocence of youth, we bear both the blessings and sins of the world throughout our lives. Origins can also refer to any turning point in a character’s life, such as the incident that opens my story. Maggie doesn’t dwell much on the circumstances of her birth or upbringing, but they have deeply affected her. Though she doesn’t seek her mother, she does possess a vestigial memory of her, expressed as an attraction to water. In a vision that turns prophetic, Maggie sinks deep into a river—a symbolic return to the womb.

The river also serves as metaphor for a fundamental aspect of nature—the surface and what lies below. The surface is what we can “see” with our basic senses, while what lies beneath is the nearly inexpressible, underlying reality—the murky depths from which everything originates.

I once read a book about men’s issues—more specifically, fathers and sons in modern and primitive societies. I didn’t particularly connect with all the metaphorical language (the author was a poet) but it was very intriguing. I was living in a boarding house the night I finished the book—alone in a room without a TV or phone. That night I had seven vivid dreams, nearly all about myself and my father. They were rich in symbolic meaning. What had happened? How had mere words triggered such startling dreams?

For me, writing is an exploration—an attempt to understand, to feel, to connect with others. That night in my room a connection was made—the personal stories and myths expressed by that author triggered things deep inside me, obviously important issues lurking in the unconscious mind. These issues flow powerfully below the surface in all of us, manifesting themselves in who we are and how we behave. Just as a river follows the truest way downstream, our souls seek a path toward harmony and peace. Though Maggie and the other characters in my novel are highly flawed, they share a fierce determination to heal themselves, to become whole.

 

I hope I’ve dramatized a compelling story, and if lucky, revealed a few things that lie below. In my next post I’ll discuss the inspiration for this novel from a brief occurrence in Deadwood, South Dakota—and why my heroine is a door-to-door saleswoman.

Find Howard Petote’s novel, The Sins of Maggie Black at Amazon. Paperback and ebook available by February 14. See his website/blog at www.howardpetote.com

New Book: The Phone Call by Anna Belle Rose

Years and years ago, actually decades ago, I was a stay-at-home mom for a bit, with my then youngest child who would not fall asleep at nap time. Over time, I realized that while he wouldn’t sleep, he would sit in his crib for a bit each afternoon, listening to Yanni at the Acropolis, looking at story books, and I could sit and write. And write I did. I wrote and wrote and wrote over many months. By then, my youngest was talking, and he somehow understood that Mommy was writing a book, and he kept nagging me to keep going. And I did.

Fast forward many years, and I’d keep opening the word file of that first novel, print it out, edit and revise, and eventually send it out to a few agents. Rejections would come in, and I’d put it away for a while, then that same son would poke at me again, and the process would start all over again. During this same time, I also started several other novels, and kept working on them in the same way. All of them were contemporary romances, heavily linked to life in Vermont, and all have gloriously happy endings – I mean, who doesn’t love a happily ever after?

Finally, late in 2016, I decided I needed to either get serious about writing, or give it up for good. So I pulled those two complete novels out again, and hired incredible professional editors to go at them. Then I started submitting them to a few agents, and a couple publishing houses that didn’t require representation by agents. And on June 13th, a publishing contract arrived on the novel I wrote first, The Phone Call. And on July 13th, a contract arrived for my second, That One Small Omission. And joy of joys, on December 4th, a contract was offered on my third, More Than I Can Say.

On October 11, 2017, That One Small Omission was published in e-book and print versions, and on December 12th, The Phone Call was published. The joy and excitement I feel each time I look at my mantle and see my first published novel is an emotion that I think only other authors can understand!

Amazon link to That One Small Omission: https://tinyurl.com/yb5bc2ux
Amazon link to my author’s page: https://tinyurl.com/y8uzgxeh