Friday, November 29, 2013

Book Review: The Blue Hour by Patti Davis

There is a lot to love about The Blue Hour.  One of those things are the little gems of truth that are scattered about - waiting to be gleaned.  An example can be found in this passage:

Fifteen minutes later, Chester pulled up to his lamp-lit house - a house that looked warm and inviting, a beacon in the black rainy night. But houses can tell all sorts of lies when you look at them from the outside. Windows can shine with light and never reveal the shadows that live deep inside rooms and hallways. Passersby smile and think, how lovely, but they don't see the cold corners where dreams and desires have been left to die. -The Blue Hour

I really hate giving away too much about a book in a review.  After all, why read it if a review spills all the secrets?  So - my about the book is short and sweet:

After Joshua (the main character) moves to a new town, strange things occur causing the town folk to be less than welcoming.  We find there is more to the town of Clearoak than it's quaint image portrays.  There are secrets and they aren't pretty.

What I thought:

The Blue Hour is imaginative and heartfelt. In this tale, Patti Davis weaves several stories into one. Past and present come together as a town and its residents come to terms with the choices they have made. While the story is written for younger readers, adults will enjoy it also.

My Rating:

Purchase Link:


Author:  Patti Davis
Published:  October 01, 2013
164 pages

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

It's a Novel November with Carol Ann Ross, author of The Days of Hairawn Muhly

I'd like to welcome Carol Ann Ross to Novel November. Carol is the author of The Days of Hairawn Muhly.  She is working on the sequel, The Trill of the Red Winged Black Bird.  She has agreed to share an excerpt of her novel.  


     After the horses were put away, everyone gathered around the kitchen table where Lottie had set the roast pork from the night before. She’d already sliced the bread and set out the mustard from the refrigerator. “Help yourselves,” she called out as she walked to Ellie’s side, “You let them two alone, now. You hear me. They been dying all day to be together and for the life of me I don’t know why Pearl invited you over.”
     “Mrs. Scaggins, I don’t know what you mean. I was invited because Pearl was bragging so about this new boyfriend she’s got. She said she wanted me to see him.”
     “More than likely you invited yourself. You’re not fooling me, Ellie Rosell. And I don’t mean to be unkind to you, but I’ve known you since you were a child and I’ve seen it with my own eyes and heard it with my own ears.  If you don’t have it, it’s not any good and if you do have it, it’s the best in the world. I just don’t know how good a friend you can be to anybody. Always got to lick the red off of somebody else’s candy, just can’t stand to see someone else happy.”
    Ellie tightened her lips and balled her hands into fists.”I’ll have you know that I never said a bad word about him. I think he’s nice.”

   “Well, all that’s fine and good, but just the same, you just quietly slide out the door and get on that little bay of yours and go on home. I thank you for helping with the cattle today, and you say hello to your mom and dad for me. You can visit on another day.”


      “I’d like to have my own restaurant some day.”
     “You mean you don’t plan on getting married and having a bunch of babies?” Jay’s voice teased but his eyes searched Pearl’s earnestly.      
          She nodded her head as she took a small bite of her sandwich. “Well, yes, someday. But wouldn’t it be great to have a little restaurant by the sound and sell roasted oysters and fried flounder. Daddy says he’s been saving up a little bit every year and taking some of the money from his oystering and shrimping so that he and Momma and I could have a little oyster roast restaurant. He said I could keep the books. Said it was really important for me to learn about business. Says it’s more secure than farming.”
      “Your daddy is smart. That’s the best way to find out about a thing, from the inside out.”
     The couple sat on the log where they had gone crabbing a few weeks before, speaking easily with one another. But as he gently brushed her arm, the mood changed. Moving his hand slowly down to hers, he clasped it in his own. Pearl laid her head on his shoulder trying to ease her own breathing. She could feel her heart beating so loudly that it drowned the thoughts in her head.
     To Jay, Pearl’s smell was intoxicating, sweet and fresh, like the smell of fresh flowers. He whispered her name as he nuzzled his face in her long hair. She turned and lifted her face to his, his lips brushed ever so slightly against hers. Pearl kissed him back, pressing harder, Jay responded by drawing her closer to him. He felt her breasts soft against his chest as his hand reached to the small of her back. He pulled her even closer, feeling her belly against his own.
     “Whew!” Jay shook his head, and gently pushed the girl away from his hungry body.
     She gazed at him, her eyes rapt in his. She felt the pulsing of her lips and then the aching of her cheeks as she realized the broad smile she had suddenly made.  "That was nice.”
     “I’ve been wanting to do that since the day I met you,” Pulling her close once again he looked intently into her green eyes, then at the freckles across her nose, the wisps of hair across her forehead, and smiled back. Slowly taking her shoulders in his hands he bent to kiss her once more. This time her mouth was waiting, her lips slightly parted.

     The taste of raw cherries filled his mouth and he held Pearl against him tightly once again, but this time he resisted pulling her in as closely, though he knew she would have let him.

If you enjoyed the excerpt, click here for the purchase link.

Carol can be found:

Monday, November 25, 2013

It's a Novel November with Kevin Kennedy


I'm pleased to welcome Kevin Kennedy to Novel November.  He is a freelance writer, poet, ebook author and decorated veteran of the United States Navy with over 25 years of honorable service to our country. He proudly served in aviation as a Naval Aircrewman, Search & Rescue Swimmer and Aviation Operations (AVOPS) Limited Duty Officer, also known as a “Mustang.”
The first in his children’s book series, Ten Dollar Words For Kids, is published by Halo Publishing International and illustrated by Jay Fife. His latest projects are an ongoing series of children’s books dedicated to increasing the level of vocabulary in young minds with a foundation focused on the fundamentals of education that translate into the next generation’s world of social and interpersonal abilities and behaviors.
Kevin is happily married to a highly intelligent woman, has four amazing kids, three ever-hungry dogs and two curiously unusual cats. A graduate of Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and native of Upper Arlington, Ohio.

Excerpt of Ten Dollar Words For Kids:

This is the first cover and one of the illustrations and text that will be featured in my first book.  Illustrations by Jay E. Fife:
Sleight of hand, fingers quick,
perform engaging parlor tricks.
Hocus-pocus, presto, change-o!
Abracadabra, where’d that coin go?!
Houdini was tops, boggled the mind,
many seek to be his kind.
It disappears, no explanation,
magic trick: Prestidigitation.
For more information about this book, please check out Kevin's website.

Follow Kevin on:

Purchase Links:

Barnes & Noble

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Novel November - L.E. Fitzpatrick's The Running Game

I want to welcome L.E. Fitzpatrick to Novel November.  She is the author of a fantasy series called Dark Waters and The Running Game (Reachers).  She is currently working on more Reacher novels and short stories.  

Me:  I've got to ask - What inspired the idea for The Running Game (Reachers)
Fitzpatrick:  I'm a big fan of fantasy and sci-fi and after spending a number of years writing my fantasy series Dark Waters I really wanted a break and to do something totally different. I've always had an interest in Soviet Russia and Nazi Germany and the plight of the people who were caught in such oppressive regimes, especially when both movements were so different and yet ultimately had such a disregard for humanity. Basically when we are at our most vulnerable as a society we turn to drastic measures, which is something which is happening in Greece and even in Britain with more and more people voting for right wing extremist politics.

I started to think about what would happen if poverty in Britain worsened, if our fears about terrorism and disease spread and what mistakes we as a society could make in trying to protect ourselves from ourselves. So the world I have created is one of despair, intolerance and fear. The rich thrive, the poor suffer and anything different is hunted down.

The "prey" in the case of The Running Game are the Reachers - a different breed of humans that have some psychic ability. They are hunted down, experimented on and exterminated. The Running Game is a story about two Reachers who happen to cross paths.

Me:  That's really intriguing.  So, can you share a little about the main characters?
Fitzpatrick:  Rachel was raised in a convent after her father was executed. She's a Reacher hiding out in the shanty town surrounding London and she doesn't realize that people are trying to find her to use her powers for their own gain. She's a strong, independent woman. She's not a damsel in distress, nor is she a warrior woman. Rachel is a normal girl with a talent and a inclination towards surviving.

Charlie used his Reacher talents to get anything for anyone, but then his wife was murdered, his Reacher daughter taken. Now he's an addict, dependent on his brother to keep them afloat. He is hired to find Rachel, but when he realises she's a Reacher he is compelled to do everything he can to help her while at the same time rediscovering who he once was and what he can still do.


Five past eleven. Rachel’s shift should have finished three hours ago. She slammed her time-card into the machine. Nothing. She gave it a kick, then another until it released, punching her card and signing her out for the night. The hospital locker room was unusually quiet. There was a nurse signing out for the night, two doctors signing in. Nobody spoke to each other – it wasn’t that kind of place. Grabbing her threadbare coat from her locker, she drew it over her scrubs – the only barrier between her and the unforgiving October night. She walked through the ER waiting room, eyes fixed on the exit. You had to ignore the desperation. Three hours over a twelve hour shift, you had no choice but to pretend like you didn’t care. Push past the mothers offering up their sick children like you could just lay your hands on them and everything would be better. Push past the factory workers bleeding out on the floor. Push that door open and get out. Get home. You had to. In six hours the whole thing would start again.
The first blast of cold air slapped the life into her aching body. The second blast nearly pushed her back inside. She tightened the coat around herself, for the good it would do. November was coming, and coming fast. She quickened her pace, trying to outrun the winter.

She hurried past the skeletal remains of another fallen bank, a relic of the days when there had been an economy. Now the abandoned building housed those left to the streets; the too old, the too young, the weak, the stupid. Cops would be coming soon, moving them on, pushing them from one shadow to another until dawn or death, whichever came first. But for now they sat, huddled around burning canisters, silently soaking in the heat as though they could carry that one flame through winter. They didn’t notice Rachel. Even the really bad men lurking in the doorways, waiting for helpless things to scurry past, overlooked the young doctor as she made her way home. Nobody ever saw her. At least they never used to.
If you enjoyed the excerpt, you can continue reading by visiting the purchase links below:
Check out The Running Game on Goodreads:
Follow the author on her blog:

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

It's a Novel November with James M Larranaga

I'm excited to welcome Jim Larranga to Novel November.  He is the author of In the Company of Wolves. He will be sharing an excerpt of his novel.  Before we get to that, I wanted to take a moment and share a little about him.

 Larranaga writes about corporate crimes and conspiracies. Much of the author's inspiration takes a "truth is stranger than fiction" approach and his novels are based loosely on real crimes and events. In his latest novel, "In The Company of Wolves," Larranaga uses his 25 years of experience in the financial services industry to expose the hidden sub-culture of Death Brokers who choose greed over human lives.

Now for the excerpt:  

Minnesota has the highest concentration of wolves of the lower forty-eight states.
Quin had the jitters everyone feels on the first day of a new job. Nervous questions came to mind. Could he handle this job? Would they accept him into their group? He arrived early for his 9:00 a.m. starting time and remained seated in his 1988 Chevy Silverado pickup truck, the engine idling to keep him warm. He checked his look in the rear- view mirror again. He had his corporate game face on: he had shaved, combed his black hair back into a ponytail, and bleached his teeth to a dazzling white. He adjusted his Lorenzo Cana silk tie that he’d bought on eBay and debated whether to keep the earring.
He reached for his phone and sent a text message to his girlfriend Zoe.
Earring or no earring?
He waited for her reply as he looked at his GPS watch and heart rate monitor. It was 8:44 a.m., and his pulse was ham- mering at 105 beats per minute.
Wear the earring. Good luck! Zoe texted back.
Quin stepped out of his rusted truck onto hard-packed snow, slamming the door so hard that he startled two ravens
in the trees. The birds took flight above him, squawking as they landed on the branch of an oak.
He glanced up at the ravens. One squawked at him, flapping its wings in the cold wind. How long had they been watching him here?
Quin reached into his coat pocket and removed a sheet of paper with the office address. He’d heard about this place from his grandfather. This section of Lake Minnetonka had been spiritual ground for Native Americans like the Sioux. But now from the way it looked to Quin, it was a sanctuary for rich white folk.
The home office of Safe Haven LLC was more home than office. He saw no corporate buildings at the end of the cul-de- sac, just a few mansions and villas nestled along a dead-end lane near a frozen body of water. The home before him, the place that was supposed to be his new office, was an Italian villa with ornate bars over the windows and a red clay tile roof. The landscape had tall pine trees that were hunched over from the heavy snow on their branches. A Georgian colonial with white pillars stood across the road, and beyond it was a Cape Cod mansion with artificially weathered cedar shakes.
Quin walked the icy sidewalk, bits of rock salt crunching under his suede shoes. Tucking his ponytail under his collar, he watched both ravens float and land on the mansion’s tile roof, looking for a better view of the outsider. He stopped when he noticed a man rounding the corner of the mansion with a shotgun in his hand.
“Yes?” the man asked, loading the shells.
Quin waved the company letterhead, feeling confused and nervous. He did not like shotgun greetings. “Uh, is this 607 Lake Drive?”
The old man had a rosy, wind-burned complexion and thick dark hair that hardly moved in the wind. “It is. And you are...?”
“Quin Lighthorn. I’m the intern you hired,” he said, holding the sheet of paper higher, knowing the man could not read the acceptance letter from this distance across the knee-deep drifts of snow.
The man played with the safety on the gun, snapping it on and off.
“I thought we called that off, son.”
“Don’t think so,” Quin said, watching the man’s gloved trigger finger. “I spoke with Ben Moretti. He said to begin work here January second.”
The man squinted. “Oh, you’re the Indian?”
Quin wasn’t surprised by the question, and he’d expected some reaction to his ponytail and feathered earring. He offered a polite smile. “Yeah, Dakota Sioux.” He could see disdain on the man’s face.

The man sighed and stepped through the snow with his gun held high, as if he were wading through a deep river. “Follow me then,” he said, setting the gun on the front step of the house.

If you enjoyed the excerpt, In the Company of Wolves is available at Amazon:

Monday, November 18, 2013

The YA Lit Chick: Review: Of Dreams and Shadows by D.S. McKnight (Bo...

Today is the big day - the start of my first blog tour and the beginning of my little experiment.  For the next five days, my book will be featured on various blogs in hopes of increasing sales.  I will be monitoring my sales this week and next to see if there is an increase.  This week my novel is touring with Reading Addiction Virtual Blog Tours.   I will tour in December and January as well (with a different tour each month)  At the end, I'll let you know the results. 

Below is my first stop.  I couldn't be more thrilled with the review.  4 stars!  Feeling good this Monday morning!

The YA Lit Chick: Review: Of Dreams and Shadows by D.S. McKnight (Bo...:  Young Adult Paranormal Date Published: 9/23/2013 Sixteen year old Jenna Barton isn’t a happy camper.  She’s had to move ...

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Author Isaiyan Morrison's Guest Post

I met Isaiyan Morrison several months ago when I reviewed Sphere (The Carriers,   Episode 1). She is quite the busy author.  Her novel Deamhan was released in August of this year. Her novella Kei, which takes place right after Deamhan, will be release on December 2, 2013.  I'm thrilled to welcome Isaiyan to Novel November.  She is not only sharing as excerpt but she has agreed to be my "first" guest host! 

DS:   Welcome to Novel November!  I'm so glad you could stop by!

Isaiyan:  First, I'd like to say thank you for having me on your site. It's good to be here!

Let me introduce myself to readers who haven't heard about me and my book. My name is Isaiyan Morrison and I was born and raised in Minnesota. I served four years of active service in the military and now I reside in Texas. I also play video games in my spare time. I've always been a gamer and at one point I was sponsored to participate in video game tournaments across America, Canada, and Caribbean.
Deamhan is the first novel in the Deamhan Chronicles. The novel follows a woman, Veronica, who goes back to Minnesota to find the truth about her mother's disappearance. The only thing she knows is that her parents worked for a secret organization in Minneapolis at the time of the disappearance and her father refuses to mention anything about it. Veronica decides to retrace her mother's footsteps by going back to the city. She finds out that her mother was tracking a Deamhan but she doesn't know why. However, she needs to find this Deamhan and to do that, she has to head into their dark and dangerous world.

For my novel I've researched vampire lore throughout different cultures and incorporated the most interesting ones into the novel which took about ten years to fully flesh out. There are so many different vampire types out there in lore that it was hard to choose. I wanted to write a vampire novel that was different and unique.

Deamhan are psychic vampires which is different from the popular sanguine (blood) vampires readers come across in majority of vampire novels. They feed different but have the same weaknesses (stakes, sunlight.) Four clans out of many are represented in the novel.

Ramanga - Live off the psychic energy in human blood. They have retractable and sharp canine teeth. 
Lamia - Feed by draining the psychic energy from their victim's mouths, sucking them into dry husks.
Metusba - Feed from the psychic aura of their victims around them. They don't have to kill their victims to live. 
Lugat - Feed on the psychic imprints of their victims and like the Metusba, they don't need to kill their victims to live. Often, the Lugat Deamhan prefer to move freely in the human world and enjoy human company.

They aren't romantic vampires. I prefer to stay away from that theme. I want readers to know that Deamhan aren't worried about sex. They don't attend high school and stalk pretty young girls. Their main focus is on survival and keeping their species alive. They are brutal and ruthless and they wouldn't think twice about killing anyone, even their own, to stay alive.

The first novella, Deamhan Tales titled Kei. Family Matters, takes place shortly after the first novel and it follows Kei, a Lugat Deamhan who's on the run from his sire Lucius and his sibling Selene. He's just been dethroned as head Deamhan in Minneapolis and he heads to the only person in his life who he thinks would help him in his plan to retake the city. He's vulgar, unconcerned, and downright uncontrollable because in the end, he believes that he's the only one can secure his future.

If you're interested in reading a vampire novel not marinated in romance, I suggest that you'd give Deamhan and Deamhan Tales a try.

Deamhan is now available in print and ebook on Amazon.
Kei. Family Matters will be available in ebook and print (exclusive) December 2nd 2013 on Smashwords.

Thank you so much for having me.

DS:  It was my pleasure, Isaiyan.  Thanks for stopping by.  

So now for the excerpt:                      

                             KEI FAMILY MATTERS

“Stay back, you!” She screamed.
       From where I stood I could tell that the blade wasn't sharp enough to cut through butter, let alone flesh. The handle was barely sturdy.
       I took another step forward.
       “I said stay back!”
       You can tell a lot about someone by looking in their eyes. Hers revealed panic and worry while her mind raced with thoughts of rape.
       I may be a killer and torturer, but I don't rape women.
       What was it that made humans perceive me to be a rapist? It wasn't the first time I'd been called that. I didn't look like one. I liked to wear my brown hair slicked back to keep the tiny strands from my face. I still wore the same clothes I had on the night that Lucius and Selene crashed my gathering; a black leather jacket, blue jeans, and a white shirt-all chaffed, frayed, and ripped. If anything I looked like Fonzie from Happy Days.
       While Selene thought of me as a conceded little brat who Lucius saved one solemn day back in Tralee, Ireland in 1848, I looked at myself as the leader of a social movement underway. I stood by the side of my fellow Irishmen who protested against the British occupation of our homeland. I let every man, woman, and child know that I, Malachy O'Byrne, was part of the Young Ireland social movement, and I was not to be ignored.
       As we protested, our women were raped, tortured, and killed. My mother Johanna suffered greatly along with my little sister Eliza. I couldn't stand by and let it continue. I became more involved and more radical. Just another human who felt the need to protest, fight for equality, and to be treated like a human being. Looking back at it, as a Deamhan, I felt that I had wasted my time. Humans would always be humans. There would always be death in this world, just make sure you're not the one standing on the pointy end, suffering because of it.
       I stood there, watching Bobbi shake her weary hand at me as if the knife was the only deciding factor in our confrontation. I yawned and leaned against the wall, unsure of what I wanted to do with her. I woke up hungry but not for her. I craved a woman with a little meat on them, young, plush, and ripe with psychic energy. Bobbi didn't have that.
       But I couldn't ignore my cravings.
       “I'll call the cops. You just wait right there!” She waved the knife at me again. “You… you…you pervert.”
       “Go and call them.” I proceeded to walk in her direction but I took a sharp right to move to the other side of the room. Suddenly it hit me. It was the same idea I had when I first met Nashoba on his farm. After hiding out several days in the back shed, he surprised me with a shotgun aimed straight at my head. We chatted for a few minutes. He threatened to kill me and I dared him too. I easily subdued him, drained him, and sired him as a thank you of sorts.
       I didn't have anything to thank Bobbi for but having another Deamhan by my side, just in case I didn't find Nashoba, would be my first step in rebuilding my allegiance. I just had to get over the hump that she didn't smell like the type I'd eat. But desperate times called for desperate measures. I couldn't think of any human who'd turn away a chance at immortality. It's all the rage these days. Teenage girls screaming over cute, young-looking, pale men with sharp fangs. They dreamed about these “vampires” entering their home during the night, seducing them, falling in love with them. Thinking about those estrogen filled desires made me chuckle. Who'd want to be a vampire when you could be a Deamhan! It's like choosing to be a prey instead of the beast.
       Moving in breakneck speed, I grabbed the knife and phone from her grasp and threw them to the ground. I did all of this before she had the chance to blink. Her mouth widened enough to catch flies, showing a side of fear in humans that I loved seeing.
       “See what I did there Bobbi?”
       Shell-shocked, she didn't reply.
       “I know you saw it. Tell me you saw it.” I wanted to hear her say it but she didn't speak a word.
       “I can make you into what I am. I can make you immortal. You'll be fast, strong, and unafraid of anyone and anything.”
       “What?” She spoke in a high squealed voice.
       “I can make you immortal. It's easy really.” I paused. “Well, actually it isn't. Some humans don't survive the transformation.” I scanned her. “But you look suitable I guess. So, you want me to?”
       She screamed and lashed out at me. She drove her fingernails into my skin, creating long scratch marks that healed immediately. Angered, I grabbed her by her arm and easily tossed her across the kitchen. Her back smacked against the fridge and she fell to the floor.
       “I guess I can't make you.” I walked over to her. “Stupid move, Bobbi. If someone offered immortality to me, I'd take it in a heartbeat.” I knelt beside her and she lazily raised her head.
       “Well, actually I did and I don't have a heartbeat.” I slipped my hand underneath her chin and raised her head. “I'll give you a second chance, that's it. Bobbi, do you want to be immortal?” I've sired plenty humans in my time; too many to count, and not once did I regret doing so. Each human served me in different ways. Nashoba was my getaway card. Bobbi would be my…well, maybe she could be my extra pair of eyes while I remained town, if she awoke from her transformation in time. The more humans a Deamhan sired, the more support they had, even if Deamhan weren't known to be reliable. Broken bonds didn't matter.
       I waited for her to throw herself at the offer but instead she opened her mouth and she screamed again.
       And again. And again.
       She wailed, trying to move her body away from mine. Tears poured down her face. She moved my hand away from her face and she raised herself up by using the fridge as support.
       “Please, don't hurt me.”
       I stood up slowly. “I didn't say anything about hurting you. I asked you if you want to be immortal. Are you not listening?”
       She tried to run by me, but I blocked her way. She moved to the left and I followed her.
       “I have money. It's in my room. Just please don't kill me.”
       “I don't want your money.” I exhaled loudly and grinded my teeth.
       “Please, just go. I won't tell anyone, I swear.”
       This turned into a cat and mouse chase and frankly, I was bored with repeating myself. I reached out, grabbed her by her scraggly hair, and pulled back, yanking with such force that I heard her neck snap. I let go and her body fell to the floor like a limp noodle.
       Standing over her, I took the time to admire my handy work until I realized that I had just killed a potential meal. 
       “Damn it Bobbi,” I snarled as I kicked her corpse. “Look what you made me do.”

Isaiyan Morrison's links:
Deamhan Purchase Links:
Amazon (Paperback):
Amazon (Kindle):

Kei. Family Matters. Links:

Author Media Links:

Friday, November 15, 2013

Tanya Searle, author of Aquila: From the Darkness

I'm happy to welcome YA author Tanya Searle.  She is a full-time student, wife and mother living in southwest England. Her love of reading led her to pen her first novel, Aquila: from the darkness. She is currently working on the sequel, Aquila: into the light.

Me:  So Tanya, I have to know - Where did you get the idea for your novel?

Tanya:  The idea for the novel originally came from my fascination with flying; not aeroplanes and helicopters - actual flying. I mean the feelings born of childish dreams and the arc of a trampoline bounce. The novel started as images, random flashes in my mind involving wings and the ocean. The story was already formed before I put fingers to keys. I only realized how long it was once I started typing.

Me:  Tell us a little about the main character.

Tanya:  Aqua, the main character, is seventeen; stubborn and impulsive. She lives a quiet life in the English countryside. Working as a labourer on her mother's organic farm she spends her weekdays among fruit and vegetables. But at the weekends she indulges in her secret pastime - flying. She also hangs out with her gorgeous best friend, Aaron, who has no idea that Aqua isn't exactly a normal teenage girl. Aqua's heritage is a mystery even to her. She wants to know where she came from... and during the novel, she finds out.

Me:  You are working on the sequel.  When do you anticipate it will be released.

Tanya:  Yes. The sequel, Aquila: Into the Light, should be out by Spring 2014. I am posting regular updates on twitter and my blog. I'm really excited that I will be sharing the next stage of Aqua's life with everyone.

Thanks for stopping by and for sharing a sneak peak of Aquila: From the Darkness:

Early birds get up before the sun. So I guess that’s
what I am, an early bird.
The sky is not quite dark, with slender veins
of purple and gray, when I rise. I like the quiet the
early morning brings. I like the fresh moist air
and the dew covered grass. I like getting to the
bathroom before my mother.
We share the small, bare space of a room;
cracked magnolia wall tiles and stripped wood
floor. There is no shower; just an old bath tub with
a cutting of garden hosepipe and shower nozzle
attached to the taps. I did it myself, for my own
sanity. My mother considers showers a modern
notion, designed for city folk whose lives are fast and
stressful and the opposite of ours. I consider them a necessity.  

Tanya can be found:

Purchase links:
Barnes and Noble


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

It's a Novel November with Doug Solter, Author of My Girlfriend Bites!

I'm pleased to welcome Doug Solter to Novel November.  He is sharing an excerpt of his novel My Girlfriend Bites. 

“Bree opens her mouth and another strong howl roars from deep inside her. She mimics the wolves cries with perfection. Seriously? This is not happening. That waiter must have been pissed and slipped a drug into my fettuccine because those sounds can not be coming from my date."

After his "dream" girl rejects him, 16-year-old Aiden tries to commit suicide, yet mysteriously survives. Now he feels like a loser with zero possibility of finding the perfect girlfriend. Enter Bree, the creepy girl with too much hair who's rumored to be cloned from a frozen prehistoric cave girl that scientists discovered in Canada. But when he accepts a ride from “Cave Girl” during a storm, Aiden discovers this weird girl not only has a kind heart. She's also cute.

Aiden offers to help Bree in Algebra and the two become friends. When Aiden pushes that friendship into a date, Bree accepts. On a romantic night at the zoo, Bree and Aiden fall in love as the animals watch. Unlike Aiden, they can smell what Bree really is.

Bree decides to tell him her deep, dark secret. Her family are werewolves hiding from the Demon Skins, a mysterious new enemy hunting down all the werewolf packs on earth. Aiden struggles with Bree's revelation, but chooses to stand by the girl he fell in love with. But standing by his new girlfriend will be the biggest test of his life.

Too bad Bree can't turn a coward into a fearless werewolf. That bite thing is only a myth.
This forces Aiden to do the unthinkable...believe in himself.

After his "dream" girl rejects him, 16-year-old Aiden tries to commit suicide, yet mysteriously survives. Now he feels like a loser with zero possibility of finding the perfect girlfriend. Enter Bree, the creepy girl with too much hair who's rumored to be cloned from a frozen prehistoric cave girl that scientists discovered in Canada. But when he accepts a ride from “Cave Girl” during a storm, Aiden discovers this weird girl not only has a kind heart. She's also cute.

Aiden offers to help Bree in Algebra and the two become friends. When Aiden pushes that friendship into a date, Bree accepts. On a romantic night at the zoo, Bree and Aiden fall in love as the animals watch. Unlike Aiden, they can smell what Bree really is.

Bree decides to tell him her deep, dark secret. Her family are werewolves hiding from the Demon Skins, a mysterious new enemy hunting down all the werewolf packs on earth. Aiden struggles with Bree's revelation, but chooses to stand by the girl he fell in love with. But standing by his new girlfriend will be the biggest test of his life.

Too bad Bree can't turn a coward into a fearless werewolf. That bite thing is only a myth.
This forces Aiden to do the unthinkable...believe in himself.

“Dinner Date with Bree”

            The brick walls inside the big Italian restaurant amplify all the background noise by a factor of ten. I do my best to concentrate on Bree, who raises her voice to tell me what music she likes.
            The conversation dies.
            I smile.
            Bree smiles.
            I don’t know what else to talk about. The restaurant? The tablecloth?
            Ask Bree if she can speak Italian?
            That’s stupid. Don’t ask her that.
            I scratch an itch on my leg and notice a small crescent moon tat on top of Bree’s foot. Never noticed that before.
            She flexes her ankle. “Do you like it?”
            “Like what?” I ask.
            “The tattoo?”
            “Yeah, I do. Why the moon?”
            “Because the moon is magical. It gives light to the darkness,” Bree says. “Can’t you feel its energy in the air when there’s a full moon? The night becomes so alive. So vibrant. You can always feel it.” She pauses. “I find it super hard to sleep during a full moon. How can you sleep with all that energy seething through your body? Sometimes you have no choice but to run through the woods.”
            Wait. Is Bree telling me that she runs around in the woods in the middle of the night? That’s so Cave Girl weird.
            “Do you do that?” I ask.
            “Do I do what?”
            “Run around in the forest in the middle of the night?”
            The hint of surprise on her face gets covered up quickly. “I didn’t say that. No, I’m saying that I understand why some people do. The hospital emergency rooms have busy nights on a full moon because people run around in the middle of the night and bump into things. That’s what I meant. I wasn’t talking about me at all.”
            “I’m super serious. I just like the moon. That’s all,” Bree says, a weird nervousness coming from her that I haven’t seen before.
            “So you’re only a moon enthusiast and that’s all.”
            “Yes.” She giggles. “A moon enthusiast. I like that.” Bree gulps down some water from her glass.
            “There’s a lot of suicides during a full moon.” The words roll off my tongue, and I instantly tense up the moment my brain catches it. Suicides? Why did I bring that up? Now that doesn’t make me sound depressing to be around, does it?
            The table falls silent.
            My stomach burns. I’ve destroyed this date. Blew it up in my own face. Why do I keep saying stupid things? I should have printed some awesome one-liners I could say to a girl and slip those into my pocket. I suck at improv.
            “Even the moon can’t cure everyone’s darkness,” Bree says, her eyes searching mine.
            Why is she looking at me like that? Does she suspect that I tried to — no way. How could Bree possibly know that?
            “I don’t believe in all that witches and wizards stuff. I think it’s a bunch of old superstitious crap made up by people to scare other people. And to sell them Halloween junk at grocery stores.”
Bree sips more water. “You don’t believe myths could be based on the truth?”
            “Nope. And I don’t believe in Bigfoot either.”
            Our waiter comes over. I order fettuccine Alfredo and salad. Bree takes more time, scanning the menu as her mouth twitches to the side.
            “I’ll take the veal Parmesan,” Bree says.
            “Our chef’s signature dish. Excellent choice,” the waiter says.
            “But I want it without the sauce and cheese on top.”
            “Breaded veal without the Parmesan?”
            “Yes, and what side dish comes with that?”
            “A side order of pasta marinara with our vegetable of the day.”
            Bree’s eyes wince. “I want meatballs instead.”
            “Side order of spaghetti and meatballs? We can do that.” The waiter writes it down.
            “No pasta. Only the meatballs. And can you leave off the veggies and just add more meatballs?”
            The waiter shoots me an unhappy look. I pretend to look out the window. The man rips off an order slip, crumples it up, and starts again. “I have a breaded veal without sauce or cheese with a double order of meatballs. What dressing would you like on your salad?”
            Bree bites her lip. “No dressing, but can you put an obscene amount of bacon bits on it?”
            “Bacon bits instead of dressing?” The waiter looks at Bree like she’s gone insane.
            “An obscene amount. Yes.”
            “I’ll put your order in right away,” he says with a slight hint of mockery in his voice as he takes away our menus and leaves.
            Bree leans forward. “What’s the plan for after dinner? You said something about a surprise?”

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Doug Solter is a screenwriter and author of two young adult novels. He respects cats, loves mountains, and has enjoyed a glass of sangria on the streets of Barcelona. He directed three short films, two rap videos, and worked in local television for twenty years.  Doug began writing screenplays in 1998 and became a 2001 semi-finalist in The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences’ Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting. His script Father Figure was one of 129 scripts left from 5,489 entries. His tenth script, Rail Fan, became a quarter-finalist in 2009. Soon after, Doug made the switch to writing young adult novels in 2008. Doug lives in Oklahoma where he spends time with friends, good music, and the characters in his head who won't leave.