Saturday, January 20, 2018

From Coconuts to Confessions - #Contest #SriLanka #Vietnam @AdamMannAuthor

Love in the Rain
 
By Adam Mann (Guest Blogger)

About twenty years ago I was just finishing working on a project in Sri Lanka when I came across a book in Colombo entitled “an historical relation of CEYLON” which had been written and published in 1680. I’m not a historian, but the title intrigued me and led me to find out about the history of that area, and I also had the time and facility to visit some of the places mentioned in that book. It was a bit like surfing the web – one place led to another, and some of the recorded history in that region went back thousands of years!

The descriptions of people at those times – both men and women – began to make me think about their real personal lives. They must have had families! But recorded history is usually very quiet about their wives, concubines and mistresses, or indeed their husbands and lovers.

At that time I was living on the edge of a coconut estate in North West Sri Lanka, just before I moved to a new project here in Vietnam.

What a change!

I was suddenly confronted with hoards of beautiful ladies, who did nothing to hide their shapes and everything to make themselves more attractive, presumably to the opposite sex.

I had started to write novels based on the history I had discovered about the Indian sub-continent, and I was trying to find a traditional publisher, and fortunately managing to avoid the vanity press. So I still had my manuscripts intact.

I read the books again, and began to wonder again about their social and family lives. I also managed to “surf the web” as then the internet was slowly developing, and I found that people were writing about anything!

Now I’d better explain. My parents and their parents weren’t Victorian, but pretty close to it. Sex was a taboo subject. Simply, one didn’t talk about it – although they all must have participated in it or their children, including me, wouldn’t have existed.

This intrigued me and I must confess I wanted to dip my “finger” into the local society with all those lovely ladies, and I wasn’t short of volunteers!

I thought that language would be a problem, but in that climate nobody needed to talk about anything.

I steered away from people in my office, and friend’s offices. I also stayed away from the ‘red light’ areas. I was working in an agricultural area where reproduction is fairly close to the surface, and people are more than happy to talk and joke about it. But I was too busy working to manage to meet any participants for what I had in mind. In fact I was too busy for the next fifteen years before I completed my first manuscript.

I wrote my first adventure novel based on a man meeting several ladies at an embassy reception, which is also a location where ladies dress to kill!

I arranged for my hero in this book to meet his heroine several times socially before either of them decided that closer inspection, with or without clothes, would be a good idea.

Then I found online that several “on line” publishers had emerged, and the electronic novel had been developed – now called an eBook. I needed a front cover and again the web came to my rescue as I managed to buy several pictures of semi-dressed or undressed ladies. I taught myself to add the title of the book and the name of the author to the cover.

I also found several publishers who offered eBooks and printed paperbacks on the market, and they also had art departments who produced much better book covers than me. They also employ a team of the essential editors and proofreaders.

Today, with the New Year upon us I have looked back on my life and productivity over the last twenty two years:

Three murder or mystery novels.

Three historical novels.

Ten novella eBooks from on-line publishers, like eXtasy, Phaze and
Global Publishing and,

Twenty two eBooks that I have self-published using the name Butterfly
Books as I couldn’t wait for the publishers to make a decision.

If you’ve read this far please take a look at some of these books:


From a personal point of view I did mention that I lived and worked in Vietnam, but not in Hanoi. I have always preferred mountains to the coast, and I’m not too far from the highest mountain in Vietnam known as Fansipan, which is 3,143 meters, or 10,312 feet, above sea level, and is a favourite destination for tourists. At this mountainous location the residents are from ethnic minority groups, like Huong or Dao, who actually account for fifteen percent of the total population, but many don’t speak Vietnamese as their family language.

On recent visit to Sa Pa with my wife we stopped at a restaurant in the town for dinner, and I was momentarily delayed in the restaurant paying the bill. When I went outside I saw my wife was buying a locally made memento. The vendor was a local Huong lady wearing her traditional and colourful clothes, and my wife who is from the ethnic majority Kinh, both Vietnamese, but both haggling the price loudly in English!

Excerpt from my latest eBook:

I’m often asked to leave an excerpt from one of my books. I like offering these and the following is extracted from the beginning of one of my latest novellas:



It was very early morning when the flight finally arrived in Taipei, and Charlie walked with Sue-Ling to the Arrivals Hall.

Wait a minute,” she said and disappeared into an airport shop.

Here,” she said a few minutes later, “something from Taiwan so that you remember me!” and she laughed.

He handed him a small locally made toy farmer.

As she was standing close to him he kissed her forehead, and she blushed, but made no effort to move away.

Bathroom,” said Charlie, and Sue-ling took his bag and said, “I’ll wait for you,” which was kind of her.

She watched him walk away, and made a mental note.

Tall, she decided, probably six feet, brown wavy hair, slim build, intelligent and with a lovely smile. She guessed he’d be late thirties.
She knew he wasn’t married as he’d told her during the flight, as she’d told him she was nearly thirty and single, but she had also said there was an old boyfriend waiting for her at home.

Charlie, for his part, thought about this charming and attractive lady he’d met on the flight. She was quite tall compared to other Taiwanese ladies, kept her black hair shoulder length, wore thin gold ring earrings, and was still very slim. But with winter clothes covering her he could not tell anymore. Still she did have a lovely smile with sparkling black eyes.

Sue-ling was waiting for Charlie, and she gave him her bag as she in turn went to the ladies washroom.

Wrong way round,” thought Charlie, “I should have asked her first!”
And he admonished himself, and when she came back she was a bit deep in her own thoughts. They walked on together.

You have to go that way, but I’m going over there,” Sue-ling indicated the overhead signs, “Oh yes, here’s my mobile phone number so if you give me a ring sometime, and then I’ll have your number,” and she handed him a small card.

Good-bye Sue-ling,” said Charlie, “thanks for your time and help on the flight.

Sue-ling smiled and on tip toe kissed Charlie on his right cheek, and she walked away.

Charlie followed the signs leading to the Departure Hall, but was still thinking about her.

He dialed her number in his mobile phone, and it rang;

Is that the attractive lady I met on the flight from Vancouver?” he asked into the phone.

No, sorry, I can’t see her around here,” she replied, “but I’ll give you a call if I do.”

Readers will have to buy this eBook to read what happened next so try this link at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077QDKWC1 Or at Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/760958  


Links to all Adam’s books:

And at Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and other eBook retailers.
Try Adam’s website: http://www.adammannauthor.com  



Contest:

Readers are probably aware that most of my books are based in Asian or African countries where I have lived and worked.

Please send Adam the names of any country from Asia or Africa and the correctly spelled names of ONE of the languages that they speak, apart from English.

The author will send free copies to the first five readers in any format they like: epub, mobi (Kindle), lrf, pdf, pdb.

Don’t forget to send the author your email address, or you can send a Direct Tweet to @adammannauthor

Good reading and please have a happy and successful 2018.


Friday, January 19, 2018

Dreaming True - #magic #dreams #paranormal

Winged Dreamer

I’ve always believed in magic.

My dad may have had something to do with this. He used to concoct wild stories about monsters and ghosts, ogres and trolls. I remember sitting cross-legged next to my brother, on the floor by my father’s chair, held spellbound by his tales of heroes tasked with magical trials and elementals battling one another for control of the planet.

Maybe I inherited his imagination.

When I was in elementary school, I had a garnet birthstone ring that I believed could grant wishes. Mostly I remember asking for simple, silly things—like a blizzard, so we’d get the day off from school. Then my mom came down with pneumonia. She was so ill that at eight years old, I had to take over cooking for the family. I was terrified by the sudden helplessness of the woman who was at the center of my world, who could, and did, do everything. The ring got a workout during that period. My mother recovered fully, solidifying my faith in the unseen and the effectiveness of asking for one’s heart’s desire.

I’ve written many times here about the mystical quality of my first BDSM relationship. At dinner on the night before my initiation, my soon-to-be Master told me he was descended from a family of sorcerers—that his Germanic ancestors had practiced the dark arts back in the old country. I’m still convinced I experienced true magick that night, though he often teased me about being suggestible.

Most of my life has been ordinary and mundane, of course, like everyone else’s. I’ve never been convinced I had any special powers. There’s one area, though, where I have experienced the uncanny, more than once. Every now and then, I have prescient dreams.

The first one I remember involved my Master. We didn’t see one another very often, since we lived on opposite coasts. After not having talked to him for several weeks, I had a deeply disturbing dream about him. In the dream, he was hospitalized, bandaged, unconscious and immobile on the bed. I recall everything being pale white, drained of color and life. I sat beside him, holding his hand, willing him to wake. He roused, at least enough to squeeze my fingers, but on his face was a look of absolute despair. I didn’t know what to do, so I just sat there, being with him, holding him, loving him the best I could.

I called him the next day, worried. He told me his father had hanged himself in the basement the night before. I didn’t tell him about my dream, not then. As I had in the dream, I held him in my thoughts, soothed him with my words, and hoped that he’d heal.

Another, later case involved a dear female friend, a woman I met on a ride board, with whom I drove halfway cross country in the dead of winter. Jeanie was the epitome of a free spirit—an author, artist, actress and musician, a fascinating creature who seemed to exist outside the boring realm of jobs and responsibilities. She married a guy as crazy as she was. They had wild parties, a rock and roll band, and a pet pig.

One night I dreamed that she told me she was going to have a baby. I was astounded. I tried to talk her out of it. “You’re not the motherly type,” I told her. “Think of all the responsibility! The constraints!” In the dream she just shook her head and smiled.

Two days later, I learned she actually was pregnant. (She turned out to be a fabulous, if unorthodox mom, by the way.)

These are two examples that stick with me, but I know they’re not the only ones. Indeed, I’ve had multiple less traumatic dreams about my Master that turned out to have elements of truth. “How did you know her name?” he asked me when I confided I’d dreamed of him with another woman. To be honest, I’m not sure he believes in magick, at least not the way I do.

Over the years I’ve published quite a bit of paranormal erotica, including my recent release Damned If You Do, my MM novel about the burden of seeing the future NecessaryMadness, my urban shifter romance The Eyes of Bast, and my collection of dark paranormal tales Fourth World. My paranormal worlds are mostly ordinarymostly indistinguishable from our own. Every so often, however, bright power streaks through them, like lighting illuminating a thundercloud from within. That powerit’s easy for me to write. It feels natural, true. I hardly have to think about it.


In the realm of fiction, my dreams also shape reality.


Thursday, January 18, 2018

Shopping for A Billionaire’s Honeymoon—Just 99c Until 19th January! #romcom #99cents @jkentauthor

Shopping for a billionaire's honeymoon blitz banner

Description

He is addicted to his phone and his new role as CEO. I’m addicted to getting some on my own honeymoon.

One of these things is not like the other.

I am pretty sure a serial killer’s lair is the only place in the world where I could stash my new husband so he can’t manage the acquisition of our new company.

And that seems a little drastic.

But only a little...

All I want is one week alone with him. Hours in bed, legs tangled together in ecstasy, room service and long walks on the beach in Hawaii.

Not vying for his kisses around a Bluetooth microphone. The Borg aren’t sexy in real life.

So I’m taking matters into my own hands and hitting “reboot” on our honeymoon.

We’re going to a place so remote that no one can find us.

Not even my mother.


Shopping for a Billionaire’s Honeymoon is now a full-length book of 150+ pages, with both Shannon and Declan’s points of view. Originally published with only Shannon’s viewpoint, this expanded edition is a result of reader feedback. People wanted to know what Declan was up to – so here you go. This book is meant to be read after Shopping for a Billionaire’s Wife and/or Shopping for a CEO’s Fiancée, but if you read it out of order (or even as a standalone), that’s fine. Shannon and Declan forgive you. ;)
Buy links:

Amazon Canada: http://amzn.to/2izYeY4
Amazon Australia: http://amzn.to/2izXJxb

Google Play: http://bit.ly/2i1YETg

Excerpts

#1 - Shannon

Let’s do an inventory of this fine day. My day-after-I-got-married day. In Vegas.
After fleeing my Momzilla mother.

Today is supposed be Day One of my honeymoon after marrying the billionaire of my dreams.

(Let’s not count the night before).

Woke up to the lovely sight of my husband’s tousled dark hair sliding down my torso so he could feast on me for breakfast.

Had actual breakfast in bed after room service delivered mixed berries, cream, bacon, and maple-soaked carrot-cake french toast, and the best damn coffee on the planet from the coffee chain I now own.

Made love with my delightful husband in the giant jetted bathtub in our suite. Turns out I’m as bendy as a Cirque du Soleil performer when I need to be. Maybe Mom’s insistence that I attend all those yoga classes she teaches has a silver lining after all.

Dressed and prepared to hop the corporate jet for Hawaii, kisses interspersed between readying ourselves for the trip. Undressed twice. Dressed twice. Declan insisted I not wear panties for the plane trip.

But I’m already a member of the Mile High Club,” I’d protested.

Not as a wife.”

He had a point.

Panties abandoned.

Found his brother, my best friend, a former colleague and an Anterdec chauffeur all married to each other.

Notice something a little different about that last one?

Yeah. Me too.

Day One of my honeymoon had promise, but now? Now it’s a little too real.

We’re on the plane, settling into our seats, and I’m doing my best not to think about my poor best friend and her chaotic mess back at the Anterdec resort where Declan and I just spent nearly a week trying to figure out our entire life.

Which we did, successfully, to my utter surprise. After fleeing our wedding in a helicopter and lying to my Momzilla mother, we managed to get to Las Vegas, ensconced in a resort on the Vegas Strip that Declan had designed himself as an intern in college. By the time my crazy family caught up to us, we’d steeled ourselves for the inevitable fallout.

And got so much more than we expected, in more ways than one. We’re married now.
Husband and wife.

That’s really all that matters.

That, and honeymoon sex.

Lots and lots and lots of honeymoon sex. It’s my wifely right to walk funny for the next few days.

And his husbandly duty to make it so.

#2 - Declan

It’s criminal what Shannon does to me. We just had sex, spooned and cocooned, breathing in each other’s air and imprinting each other with scent and time.

And yet she makes me want more.

Spread among the mussed bedsheets, she looks like a divine being poured her into the bed, all long, rolling hair and sultry smiles. How can a body smile at me like that? Yet it does. It sings to me, a song of joy and fire that touches the very root of me.

I climb on the edge of the bed and yank her by the ankles, hard, making her squeal.

You know what you do with criminals?

You handcuff them.



About the Author

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Julia Kent writes romantic comedy with an edge. From billionaires to BBWs to new adult rock stars, Julia finds a sensual, goofy joy in every contemporary romance she writes. Unlike Shannon from Shopping for a Billionaire, she did not meet her husband after dropping her phone in a men's room toilet (and he isn't a billionaire). She lives in New England with her husband and three sons in a household where the toilet seat is never, ever, down

Social Media Links:



Sale blitz organized by Writer Marketing Services.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

What creature is your favorite? #ParanormalRomance #Shifters #Dragons @KathyKulig

Shifters eye

By Kathy Kulig (Guest Blogger)

Shapeshifters: the heroes who haunt us, hunt us, and hunger passionately for us

Do you love shifter romance? I do! Romance shapeshifter stories are hugely popular now and have been for quite some time. What is so compelling about these metamorphosing heroes? Is it their tendency to be alpha leaders of their pack? Are we attracted to the lone-wolf, brooding type of guy? Or maybe we love following these tortured heroes as their heroines try to save them. What other reasons do you think draw us into these books?

I think some of the most popular shifters now are: dragons, wolves, bears, leopards, jaguars, and lions. But I’ve also seen foxes, dolphins, coyotes, various birds of prey and mythical beings like gargoyles and mermaids/mermen. Years ago, I even read one book with a shifter pack of sea otters. It was a well written story too.

I’ve been a fan of these books for a long time and have written a number myself. Through my research, I’ve discovered the amazing folklore and mythology surrounding the shapeshifting world. Many countries have their own shapeshifting myth, some are hundreds of years old. I’ve utilized them for inspiration in my books.

What causes or initiates the transformation of a shifter from human to creature form? Here are a few ways:
  • Magic spells
  • Curses
  • Genetics
  • Alien races
  • The magic power from an object or talisman
  • Divine intervention of a god, faery being, etc.
  • Race of beings

Theriantropy is the transformation of a human into animal form. There are legends where humans can transform into objects or plants. Don’t think this could make for a sexy romance, but I could be wrong.

The Navajo Skinwalker legend is a type of shapeshifter. Legend says they are a medicine man or a witch who changes form into another animal like a fox, coyote, owl, etc.

Many countries have their own creature feature and mythology

Here are a few examples:

Argentina – has a fox-like werewolf and were jaguar forms.

Canada – have bear shifters

China – are known for their Chinese werewolves, and a female fox spirit who is very dangerous.

Greece – A vrykolaka is similar to a were wolf or vampire.

Ireland and Scotland – They have the myth of the selkies or seals that can become human. They are supposed to watch over fisherman.

Norway and Sweden- have the eigi einhamir (not of one skin). I used this myth in a shapeshifter series of mine yet to be re-published. These shifters don animal skins, like a wolf skin, and can change at will.

My favorite Shifter Movie: Lady Hawk. The heroine was a hawk by day and the hero a wolf by night. A curse kept them in this predicament. Very romantic.

I love writing shifter stories. There’s mystery, angst, drama, and conflict—all work well in a steamy paranormal romance.



DRAGON WITCH – Takes place on another planet. The dragon shifter is part of an alien species who shifts twice a year with an intense drive to mate. Their ‘arrangement’ works well for Jaida, a biologist in the colony, until her ex-lover and fleet pilot returns. He wants Jaida badly, but he has a secret, they both do, that could tear them apart and harm the small colony.






THE SHIFTER’S SPELL – has a stag shifter. A Rory has been trapped for over 400 years by a Celtic curse for violating sacred ground. A ritual to honor the Sidhe may free him. But he has one chance every 80 years to perform this ritual, and he must convince Carolyn to help him. But there are secrets and risks. If he tells her, he could lose her forever and risk his chance for freedom. Release date TBA, early 2018.

I have a three-book series that take place in Arizona and have a variety of shifters. Very dangerous and sexy shifters from another world and dimension. One woman is caught in the middle of a war between shifter worlds. The titles and release dates are yet to be determined.

I’m also working on a shifter book for Kindle Worlds: The Paranormal Dating Agency. I plan to have that book completed and released later this year.

So who are your favorite shapeshifters? Who are the strangest shifters you’ve heard or read about? Any shifters you don’t like?

Books in the Dark Realms series: Dark Worlds of Supernatural Heroes, Who Haunt Us, Hunt Us and Hunger for Us

DRAGON WITCH, BOOK 1 – Out now.

EDGE OF PASSION, BOOK 2 – Out now.

TATTOO WITCH, BOOK 3 – Out now.

THE SHIFTER’S SPELL, BOOK 4 – Coming soon!

More books to come…

*All books in the Dark Realms series are individual and stand-alone stories.*

About the Dark Realms series 

A collection of sensual romance novellas and short novels with supernatural heroes and fantasy elements. Shifters, space and time travel, witches, and perhaps a vampire or ghost in the future. They can be set on Earth, on another world or with in another dimension. With out of this world heroes who haunt us, hunt us and hunger passionately for us. Each book is a complete and individual story. No cliffhangers!

About Kathy
 
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Kathy Kulig is known for her sexy contemporary and paranormal romances that are passionate, intense and riveting. These emotionally-charged stories are full of heart and always have a happy ending. She began her writing career in journalism, publishing articles in magazines and newspapers. Kathy has been featured or quoted in the Chicago Tribune, Writer's Digest, Romantic Times Magazine, USA Today HEA, Bustle Magazine, Florida Weekly, and appeared on several radio shows. She has spoken at national and local conferences, writer's groups and libraries.

When she's not writing, she loves to work out, travel, read a ton of books, watch movies and have dinners out with her darling husband. She lives in Pennsylvania in a 100-year-old Victorian house with a garage built out of reject tombstones.

You may read more about Kathy, her books, contest and upcoming projects by visiting her 

Website http://www.kathykulig.com and subscribing to her 
 
Mailing list. http://www.smarturl.it/KathysHotNews

Facebook group/Street team:



Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Review Tuesday: The Peppered Moth by Margaret Drabble #ReviewTuesday #Literature #FamilySaga

The Peppered Moth cover

The Peppered Moth by Margaret Drabble
Harcourt, 2001

From her earliest days, Bessie Bawtry knows she does not belong in the dreary, polluted coal mining town of Breaseborough. She is better than her dour, unemotional mother Ellen, her distant father Burt, her ploddingly dull sister Dora. She is destined for something great. South Yorkshire is a prison which she is determined to escape.

As the protegée of a teacher with “modern” ideas, Bessie studies hard and wins a scholarship to Cambridge. She marries a man of means and makes a home in lovely Derbyshire. Freeing oneself from the past is more difficult than it would appear, though. Even with beauty, brains and ambition, Bessie finds it difficult to build a satisfying life.

Nearly a century later, Bessie’s scientist granddaughter Faro returns to Breaseborough for a seminar on her family’s genetic roots. She tries to solve the puzzle of why some people stay put and simply adapt to their environment, no matter how difficult or dark, while others manage to relocate and thrive.

I picked up this novel at a used book sale because I’d never read anything by this respected literary author. It’s an intriguing story, mixing a multi-generational family saga with some serious meditations on love, biology, luck and fate. The narrative voice is mostly third party omniscient, a stylistic decision I found annoying at times. In particular, the author has a tendency to ask sly rhetorical questions when of course she knows the answers.

Still, I enjoyed The Peppered Moth, partly because of its vivid descriptions and elegant prose but mostly due to its memorable characters. Bessie’s self-centeredness and her tendency to sabotage her own happiness make her pretty unappealing, but Faro and her mother Chrissie are both strong, complex women with whom I could identify. I particularly loved the description of the intense, ultimately tragic love between Chrissie and Nick Gaulden, Faro’s father. Somehow the author descends from her omniscience down to the earth when describing their youthful passion.

Faro is intriguing and complex, at least partially because she is a descendant of all these varied individuals—Bessie, brilliant and perpetually dissatisfied; Aunt Dora, patient and nurturing; Chrissie, practical and (after her betrayal by her first love) unromantic; and the rakish and irresistible Nick.

Although The Peppered Moth is a dark story at times, it ends on a note of hope. Faro is the future; you want her to escape from the negative forces in her genetic background and to flourish. By the time you close the book, you are fairly convinced that she will.