CARNAL – February 14, 2016 4

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My photographer, Invicta’s Art Photography, took my model of choice for this project, Colin Lenn, into the Las Vegas desert to get this shot for the Carnal cover and I love it.

The first book in the EXILED series is tied to Black Swan with Rosie, aka Elora Rose Storm.

The angel, Kellareal, stopped the genocide of generations of hybrids, who had been bred for research and spent their entire lives imprisoned. Against orders, he spirited them away to a place where they would have freedom and purpose.

In a vindictive fit, Rosie Storm asked her mother’s friend, Kellareal, for a place to hide from her boyfriend and teach him a lesson. Kellareal knew just the place for Rosie to grow up and learn temper control among other things. The land of Exiled.

 

 

How do you mend a broken heart? – Kellareal

 

Elora Rose Storm, otherwise known as Rosie, left her dimension in a fit of immaturity over not getting her way. Some might say the behavior was easier to forgive in light of the fact that she was, chronologically, only fourteen-months-old. Her witch / demon genes had accelerated her physical and intellectual growth, but her emotional equilibrium lagged behind.

The Exiled were a race of human hybrids, who, for generations, had lived their entire lives as slave test subjects. When they became perceived as too dangerous to keep, their creators planned a genocide. Against Council orders, Kellareal intervened and moved them to a dimension where they would have the opportunity to establish balance between the human population and a race of stronger, faster, fiercer hybrids who preyed on them.

Rosie thought she was getting a few weeks of asylum. The last thing she was expecting was to meet someone like Carnal.

Prince of Demons 1, 2, 3 11

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Buy on the e-box set on Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/Prince-Demons-1-3-Box-Set-ebook/dp/B00T0PEM8M/

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 Too Much Story for One Book!

 

part 1 BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR…

After Dallas finance manager, Atalanta Ravin, was left standing at the altar in a publicly humiliating jilting, she quit her job, sold her house, gave away her furniture, and set off in search of a new life living on a boat in Boston Harbor. She got the adventure she’d always secretly longed for, but not in a thousand dreams could she ever have imagined that fate would lead her to her fantasy lover or that he might turn out to be a prince of demons.

Vampire Romance Books.com   … hooks you right from the start and there is no getting loose. 

Lightning Room Literary Reviews   This book made me laugh out loud, drew out of me a deep sigh of contentment and made me grin with anticipation for what’s to come.

Prince of Demons 1 BUY links:

AMAZON http://amzn.to/1wrdIMf

part 2 The Witches Say That A FEAR IS AN UNREQUITED WISH…

 

Prince of Demons 2 BUY links: Release Jan 3rd

In the second part of this rapid release trilogy, Lana wakes after a night of too much song, dance, and pub red ale to find herself in a demon dungeon sleeping on top of a fellow prisoner who happens to be seriously drool worthy. When the cryptic stranger proposes an escape plan, she goes along and gets the adventure she’d subconsciously longed for.

WHETHER SHE LIKES IT OR NOT.    

AMAZON http://amzn.to/1yMug4N

part 3 WISHES ARE MYSTERIES FILLED WITH SHADOWS and LIGHT

AMAZON  http://amzn.to/13OKqNh
YOU’RE INVITED to the Prince of Demons 3 release event Jan 19th

https://www.facebook.com/events/596078137164595/

 

Prince of Demons 1, CHAPTER ONE EXCERPT

When she was left standing at the highly polished altar of Saint Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church in a four thousand dollar dress facing everyone who had ever meant anything to her, she decided Stuart Pruitt was easily the biggest asshole in the universe. Atalanta Ravin spent the next three weeks sitting in ice cream-stained yoga pants and a holey tee shirt, staring straight ahead while two sisters and her best friend tried to convince her that, even if he was easily the biggest asshole in the known universe, life wasn’t over. Not really.

For weeks, she’d been riding a sugar overdose that left her unable to sleep at the time she needed the escape of sleep more than ever before in her life. And it was showing.

“You look like shit, Lana,” Dizzy summed it up unapologetically.

“And why would I care?”

Dizzy had been her friend since they’d been college freshmen and learned that they had both been assigned to dorm rooms with certifiably sociopathic roommates. At the end of the first semester, they scored a room they could share together and had pretty much shared everything but boyfriends since then.

Dizzy was loyal to a fault, a trait highly prized in a best friend. Unfortunately, at least in that case it seemed unfortunate, she was also persistent to a fault.

“Lana, come out with us. You can’t just sit here in a puddle of Starcream and look like shit forever.”

“I can, Desdemona.” She used Dizzy’s birth certificate name knowing it would make her wince, hoping it might also make her give up and go. “Don’t you have something else to do? Go pester Robert. He’s got to be resenting the hell out of the time you’re spending over here trying to get me to do something I don’t want to do.”

“Exasperating, Lana. We can’t help you if you won’t let us.”

“I appreciate the effort, Dizzy, but I’m not going out. I need to spend some time processing. You know. On my own.”

Dizzy, the almost maid of honor, pulled back and stared at her for a full minute. It took even longer to push Dizzy away than it had to get rid of her younger sisters: twins who, like her, were named after figures from Greek mythology. They were responsible for the nickname, Lana, because they couldn’t quite manage Atalanta when they were babies.

They were fiery, freckled redheads named Nike and Nemesis. They’d tried sympathy as far as patience would carry, then turned to threats, vowing to abandon her to her Triple Pecan Crusted Rocky Java Chip Starcream until all that she would require from them was a selection of mumus.

With a sigh of resignation, Dizzy rose saying, “Okay. I actually get that. Call me when you want to talk. If I don’t hear from you by Tuesday…” She let that hang in the air and seemed to be mulling it over. “You know I never liked him. I always knew he was a prick.”

Lana spluttered. “Liar. You were crazy about him.”

“On the inside.” Dizzy looked indignant. “I hated him on the inside.”

“Whatever.” She waved a hand in the air and blew a half-hearted kiss, but Dizzy proceeded to prove that it would take more than a wave of dismissal and an air kiss to get rid of her. Lana had doubts that even the National Guard could deter Allision when she was on a mission.

Eventually Lana had stood in a warm shower not particularly caring about the water temperature, reluctantly pulled on clean clothes and let Dizzy comb out and blow her hair like she was a doll. When Dizzy was satisfied with the cleanup, she marched her prisoner out to Nike’s car where the twins waited and deposited Lana in the backseat

“Where are we going?”

“The Four Sixes.”

It was a chic urban bar on Turtle Creek in the heart of Dallas urban posh, named after one of the famous ranches of Texas. Dizzy’s rescue party never made it inside though.

Nem had started to reach for the big brass handle that was an eclectic cross between Southwest and art deco. The door opened before she touched it letting the muted sounds of thumping bass escape and touch everyone nearby with the vibration. Lana saw out of the corner of her eye that the people who emerged were a couple. He had his arm over her shoulder. They were laughing, nudging and leaning into each other.

What she didn’t notice, until she realized her companions had gone stone still, was that the male half of the happy couple was none other than Stuart. The other half was Lana’s very own goddamn administrative assistant, Stephanie. When the soon-to-be former employee registered that she’d come face to face with the ex, who was also her boss, she was suddenly much more interested in her shoes than in meeting Lana’s gaze.

Stuart nodded to the group in general then added a curt, “Excuse us,” as he placed a hand to the small of Stephanie’s back and gave her a little push to get her started in the right direction. The two of them had almost made it all the way to Stuart’s precious royal blue Audi before Lana’s brain reengaged. A red hot curtain of fury descended in front of her vision as all the missing pieces fell into place and her body took on an agenda of its own as surely as if it was possessed by a devil. With a quickness that would make a superhero proud, she whirled and began sprinting after them.

Stuart and his date had just reached the car, which he had parked himself because Stuart didn’t trust valet parkers. He’d pointed his key fob, been greeted by the car’s answering tweets. Stephanie’s face froze in silent horror when she saw the rundown coming, but Stuart had no warning. Lana didn’t slow the charge. The only adjustment she made was to put her hands out in front of her at the last second. The result was slamming into Stuart from behind with such force that his body was thrown into the side of the vehicle and his face bounced off the roof of his car. Hard. Hard enough to draw blood.

When he turned around and looked at Lana, the devil who had possessed her whooped with satisfaction on seeing reddened eyes and blood dripping down the front of a prissy custom made shirt. With cuff links. Christ. What a tool!

“What the fuck, Lana? I think you broke my nose.” He looked at the blood on his hand as he brought it away from his face and spat. “I should press charges.”

She gaped, but not for long. Stuart’s apparent disconnect with the trail of damage he’d left behind caused Lana’s fury to gel into a cold anger and even colder laughter.

“Press charges, Stuey? Unless you want a lawsuit to pay my family back for a wedding that cost as much as your average priced house, I’d rethink that threat. A hundred pounds of fucking shrimp, Stuey! That’s a lot of fucking shrimp. Fifty cases of Dom Perignon. Shall I go on? Or maybe I’ll just turn my cousins loose and let them take it out of your hide.”

She hoped her smile looked every bit as menacing as the images of revenge that were chilling her blood. He paled a little at the thought of the triplets who were Lana’s cousins. Yes. Multiple births ran in the family on her mother’s side.

Those boys, the McKesson triplets, were privileged, but that was just disposable package wrapping. They were descended from wildcatters who were, well, wild and probably carrying the genetic ancestry of horse thieves. Or worse. The family joked that attempts to reconstruct genealogy met a quick dead end because their forbearers had been one step ahead of the law when they’d come to America. They may have changed names again when they left some landing point on the Eastern seaboard and pushed west. One thing was sure. They weren’t carrying the genes of farmers.

Everybody in Dallas knew the McKesson name by reputation. Among other things, it was rumored that they preferred to settle disputes out of court. So to speak.

Atalanta always laughed it off when she heard those whisperings and said that people love to believe bigger than life stories. From her perspective, her cousins weren’t people to be feared. In her mind they were boys, ripe for teasing, who fumed if you tricked them at blind man’s bluff and ate unhealthy amounts of Bananas Foster if given half a chance. That didn’t stop her from using the rumors to her advantage though.

Lana turned her attention to the soon-to-be-pink-slipped admin. Only then did she recognize that the expression she’d become accustomed to seeing on Stephanie’s face was guilt. Lana had thought Stephie was having some kind of trouble. Maybe money. Maybe a boyfriend. As her boss it wasn’t up to her to ask.

Looked like it was a boyfriend problem after all.

The devil in Lana was roused to dancing in triumphant circles when she startled Stephie into taking a fearful stumble backward by doing nothing more than taking a step toward her.

 

 

Lana felt her sisters on either side of her, trying to pull her away. “Come on, sis. Everybody here knows who’s boss,” Nemesis had said. Lana glanced at her sisters just in time to see them throwing identical pointed glares at both Stuart and Stephanie.

Nobody said a word on the drive back to Lana’s house. Her girls were sensitive enough to know that there wasn’t a single word in the English language that would be better than the silence.

When she was finally alone – as she’d wanted to be in the first place, she thought bitterly, she let emotion overtake her. Tears pooled then gushed onto the pillow where she’d landed on her bed, curling into a ball as she fell. She cried freely for the first time, not so much because of two humiliations, a very public jilting and an excruciatingly embarrassing confrontation. Not even because of the high price tag of a wedding that was a nonstarter.

She cried because she hated herself for missing the fucker. He may not have been a great lay and he may not have had any character to speak of, but he’d been company for three years. Long enough to build every aspect of her life around him as if she’d gradually become remnants of personality circling his sun.

She reminded herself that, being perfectly honest, she needed to amend that. He’d been good company until the past six months when his job had become so demanding that he was either away or out late more often than not. He’d been too busy to take part in any of the wedding planning. “Whatever you want will be fine with me, Lana. You have good taste,” he’d said. She didn’t think much of the distancing at the time.

 

She woke up early the next day, still in her clothes, tangled in bed covers. She rose to go to the toilet then took a look in the bathroom mirror. Her eyes were almost swollen shut from going to sleep crying. She hated what she saw in the mirror and might have broken it if she wasn’t superstitious, the remnants of a heritage that couldn’t be documented, but could be substantiated as Scot-Irish. So instead of shattering the mirror, she came to a conclusion.

Sometime during all the hours of staring straight ahead, not really hearing what people were saying, she’d arrived at a point of absolute clarity. She needed a change. Not a small change. Not even a big change. A change of such monumental proportions it would effectively be hitting the reset button on her life.

She changed into plain pajama pants and a comfy well-worn tee, turned the ringer off on her phone, then sat down in front of the TV with a box of tissue and a grease-stained box of cold day-old extra pepperoni pizza. She chomped into one of the stiff slices thinking that one of the finer privileges of relationship mourning was punishing the body with bad food, alcohol, and no exercise while ignoring the domestic hallmarks of civilized living such as laundry, dishes, garbage control and personal hygiene.

Punching the remote she began going through channels one by one. Stuart had taken control of the remote when their relationship was still new and had never considered relinquishing it, not even on special occasions. He always went straight to the guide and picked out something he already knew he liked and wanted to see. Stuart liked what he called “tried and true”. He had his favorite restaurants and stuck with the same menu items. He had a morning routine, an evening routine, and a weekend routine that involved the same people, places, and things. No sense of adventure whatsoever.

Lana no longer needed to be concerned with Stuart and his damnable preferences. She was her own person. On her own. She would reject Stuart’s lack of adventure. She would channel surf all night if she felt like it! She punched the air with every flick of the remote button as if to say, “Take that, Stuey! I will yield the remote to no man ever again.”

Moving past a cooking show, a rerun of a seventies sitcom, something about criminal midgets who loved pit bulldogs, a home show, a black and white movie starring Tyrone Power, another cooking show, a thing with a boat, and a band of ferret-like creatures standing on their hind legs in a field of brown grass. Then she stopped and backed up two channels. It was the home show.

They were doing a series on alternate lifestyles and that particular installment featured a handsome bachelor who lived on his boat. She washed the mouthful of pizza back with a swig of tequila straight from the bottle and turned the volume up.

Twenty minutes later, by the time the show was over, she knew exactly what she was going to do. She was going to quit her job as portfolio manager for Gelz Leageman Capital and sell her bungalow. It wasn’t a Highland Park estate, but it was an eye-catching brick cottage in one of the posh Dallas park cities. It had been a great investment even if it was next to the noise of the north-south toll road that cut through the middle of the city.

She’d take the proceeds and move far, far away. To New England, where she would buy a boat. To live on.

For somebody who was not quite thirty, she’d done alright for herself. She’d stayed out of trouble, gotten good grades, and made her parents proud. In the process of living up to expectations, she’d accumulated enough net worth to be able to cash in a 401K and do nothing for a while until she decided to do something else. She had no memory of waking up without a goal to pursue. Hitting the reset button meant she would find out what it felt like to wake up without a plan. Maybe she’d do jigsaw puzzles until she got tired of them and then switch to crosswords. Maybe she’d watch every movie she’d wanted to see and hadn’t. Read every book that had been reviewed by the New York Times. She might learn to knit. It was cold where she was going. She’d need lots of knit stuff. Scarves and hats and afghans and such.

She’d never experience another summer with dead brown grass on the sides of the roads and blackened burned out areas every few yards where people had tossed lit cigarette butts as they sped by. She always thought it made the Metroplex look like a version of highway to hell. She wouldn’t experience daily air quality alerts, the result of living in the world’s most populous inland area. Or the constant spring and summer threats that went with residing in “tornado alley”.

Yes. She wanted to live someplace that didn’t have tornado alarms. Clean air. Blue water. Cool days. Sure there might be snow. And ice and single digit temps. Every place had its downside.

Maybe she’d make new friends. Maybe she wouldn’t One thing was certain. It would be very unlikely that she’d run into anyone who had witnessed the color drain from her face when her intended had stood at the front of a church and blurted out, “I can’t. I just can’t,” right before he’d bolted out a side door and left her standing there staring at the best man.

The best man. In her mind she kept replaying the look of pity and apology on his face as he blinked at her with uncertainty as to what to do next since the groom no longer between them. She remembered how she didn’t want to turn her head to the right and see the shocked expressions of eight hundred well-dressed guests.

Later that day, face still mottled red with fury, Lana’s father had promised to take care of Stuart in his own unique Texan sort of way. “I’ll neuter the son of a bitch and throw his balls in with the calf fries down at the restaurant for some stranger to enjoy. Ignorance is bliss. Unless you’d like to have the privilege for yourself, little girl.”

Getting an unbidden image of that, she’d gagged twice.

“Thanks, Dad. I appreciate it, at least the sentiment behind it, but I’m thinking I’ll pass. And unless you want to end up in Huntsville, I think you better find another way to express your displeasure. You know sometimes I think you skipped the twentieth century altogether. You just popped in right out of 1886.”

He nodded. “Something to be said for simpler methods, if you know what I mean.” He looked at her meaningfully.

“Yes. I know what you mean and so does every electronic listening device with surveillance distance.”

Her comment gave him pause. He looked around uneasily as if someone was eavesdropping and kissed her on the top of the head as he was making ready to leave. “You worried about what you say in your own house? There’s no excuse for that. Ever heard of McKesson Security?”

She sighed. “I’m not worried about what I say inside my own house because I don’t plot crimes out loud.”

Lana’s father simply grunted at that as if to say maybe she was slow. “Come have lunch down at the store tomorrow.”

She was pleased that he had calmed a little and smiled. “We’ll see. Maybe.” She caught his sleeve as he turned toward the door. “You know I’m, um, sorry about the expense and…”

“Don’t you dare apologize!” He’d turned red in the face again and she immediately regretted having said something to cause it. She worried when his coloring went so out of whack. “You haven’t done a thing to be sorry for. It’s that dump of steaming yellow horse turds that needs a good dose of sorry.” He lowered his chin and stepped in closer. “You know your cousins…”

“Dad! Don’t say another word!” He stopped. She grabbed hold of his lapel and squeezed like it had nerve endings. “And make sure you’ve got them under control. Please.” Leaning in she whispered, “Stuart is out of bounds. Let karma deal with it.”

Her dad looked at her incredulously and then guffawed. “Karma! Shit.” He left shaking his head.

Yeah. That’s what she’d told her dad alright. Then she proceeded to break Stuart’s nose herself. Guess the thing about apples not falling far from trees isn’t just horse honky. She didn’t feel a bit of remorse about it. The fucker’s nose was in need of rearranging and she was glad she’d been the one to do it.

 

She was thus replaying the events in her head when the oddest thing occurred. She’d been staring at the TV that had been the source of her inspiration, and maybe salvation, while her mind had been elsewhere. Then she felt something unusual. It wasn’t sorrow or despair or grief. It wasn’t any of the emotions that usually hang with broken heartedness. It was excitement, sort of a tingly rush at the thought of pulling up stakes, leaving everything and everyone she knew behind. A transformation. The true essence of total “make over”.

She was throwing caution to the wind. Hell. She wasn’t even going to give reasonable notice at work. She knew they had two people prepped and groomed to step in if necessary. So it wasn’t like it would be a serious hardship on anyone. If it ruined her future career? She shrugged at the thought not being able to imagine caring about it anymore.

She took a moment to examine the flutter of anticipation in her tummy and concluded that she liked the adventurous Lana. The one who would leave everything familiar and embark on a whole new life at the drop of a hat.

Quit the job. Sell the house. Give everything away that won’t fit on a boat and move so far out of her comfort zone she might not even be able to remember her own resume.

She chuckled at the thought that it was like putting herself in a witness protection program. Well, not really. She knew that when she got where she was going and decided what she was doing that she would let her family know where she was. And Dizzy, who wouldn’t hesitate to deliver a lecture and say she’d tumbled off the rack. In her fantasy, Lana imagined her reply. “You were hounding me to get out. So I got out. Far out.”

The prospect was delightful from every conceivable angle. Damn. She wondered if there was even a remote chance that Stuey had done her a favor. She hated to admit it, but Stuey was just metrosexual enough that she didn’t have a hard time picturing him in a dress with many layers of tulle in the skirt, holding a star tipped wand. Bing. There you go, little lady. A whole new life to replace the one you thought you had, but didn’t.

Looking around she said, “I’ve got to get this cleaned up. You go up for sale tomorrow morning.” The walls didn’t reply, which made her like them all the more. She decided that talking to herself felt good and could become a habit with little effort. Maybe, once she was moved and settled in, she’d get a cat. She’d be that strange young woman from Texas who lived on a boat with a cat and talked to herself.

Such was her train of thought as she went about picking up Coke cans, tissues and other debris, preparing to face an upheaval that the old Lana would never have considered in a hundred years. In a couple of hours she had the place looking like a little bit of yuppie chic heaven. She heated up a frozen dinner in the microwave and ate in front of the computer. It didn’t take long to decide where she’d start looking for a new home.

Constitution Marina, Boston.

 

My Familiar Stranger Audio is Here!! 1

MFSaudiocover  How it all started. Over 15 hours.

AUDIBLE http://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/My-Familiar-Stranger-Audiobook/B00NFTCHJ0/

Will also be available on iTunes and Amazon in a few days.

Solomon’s Sieve Wins Night Owl Reviews TOP PICK 8

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NIGHT OWL REVIEWS TOP PICK AWARD. “The story is beautiful and in turns, both heart breaking, and heartwarming.”

Thank you NOR.

Make Me Write a Follow Up to Moonlight and Give It To You For FREE 17

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WANT EVEN MORE BLACK SWAN AND SOON? If I reach my goal of 500 supporters, I will write a follow-up novella to Moonlight and make it free the first week it’s out. So support this thunderclap AND invite your friends!

WHAT IS THIS ABOUT?

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Release the Romance. BlackSwanKnights Book 7
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Book #7 Coming UP 15

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Book #7, Knights of Black Swan, Solomon’s Sieve will be released May 25th.

Official Release Celebration Party on May 27th.

APRIL FOOLS TAKEOVER of Paranormal Romance and Authors That Rock Reply

Par Romance  and Authors That RockOn Tuesday, April 1st Victoria will take over

Paranormal Romance and Authors That Rock on Facebook

3:00 pm to 6:00 pm EDT (Eastern Daylight Time)

2:00 pm  to 5:00 pm CDT (Central Daylight Time)

1:00 pm to 4:00 pm MDT (Mountain Daylight Time)

12:00 pm to 3:00 pm PDT (Pacific Daylight Time)

Prizes, chat, surprise character visits, trivia, Victoria’s favorite music and SURPRISE GUEST CELEBRITIES!!!

Black Swan Emotion Quotient? SURVEY SAYS… 1

My most emotional writing moments…

Perhaps it won’t surprise you that many of them conform to your most emotional reading moments.

There have been three times that I have cried so hard, when writing, that I couldn’t see the PC screen and had to take breaks to get through the scene. 1. Elora’s dolmen labor. 2. Kris Falcon getting a medal. 3. When Storm sees Rosie on a San Francisco street corner and says, “I missed it.”

The sexiest moments I ever wrote were both in My Familiar Stranger. 1. Elora: If you bite me, I will stake you. Baka: If I bite you, I’ll stake myself.  2. Ram tries to draw Elora back into the New Forest cottage. He rubs the collar of her sweater between his fingers and says, “Soft.”

There have been a few times that I have made myself laugh. Baka’s enjoyment of the alley scene wherein he blabs about Elora taking out a vamp with a toothpick. Another not mentioned here, at Derry when Kay has tried to cover up a blunder and tells his sister that his reference to Baka as a vampire is an inside joke. Baka says, “Indeed. Nothing says funny like vampire.”

This was the question as posed on author and fan page on Facebook.

What was your MOST emotional moment in the whole Knights of Black Swan series? (laughter, tears, shock, etc.)

Can’t tell you how much fun I had reading the responses. There were nearly seventy answers in all. Here are the results. I have included a smattering of comments. If yours isn’t here, it doesn’t mean it wasn’t great. We just got a lot.

THE TOP NINE RESPONSES…

9. Elora finding out she was pregnant. (Book 1)

Yvette Nakita Clark When ram and Elora find out they are pregnant! I mean come on a baby ram? That would make any woman cry!

8. Spaz on the intercom. (Book 5)

Teri Brittin laughter … Spaz over the PA system 🙂  I was rolling

7. Storm waiting at the wall for Litha. (Book 2)

Laurie Johnson When Storm goes everyday and sits at the wall waiting for Litha to return. Broke my heart to see this tough alpha going through all that emotional turmoil!

6 CREATION: Prologue to A Tale of Two Kingdoms. (Book 6)

Anna Salamatin Jaw dropping moment…”Creation” when I realized what the project really was and that Dr.Pierce had set up the misfit group of seven to fail!  It was a true.  W.T.F? Moment for me. I actually had to go back and read that whole thing again.

5. Sol’s death. (Book 5)

Anna-Marie Coomber My best part was how Rosie was born,  I laughed out loud at that.  My biggest sheck was when Sol died I cried my eyes out.

Ann Ellis I really thought the fighting scenes at the academy in “Gathering Storm” were funny, tense and sad. Also when everyone got the news that Sol was dead was a tear jerker for me.

4. The trainees being honored for heroism. (Book 5)

Terry McHone There were incredible highs and devastating lows, but when Elora decided to honor her trainees for their courage and their willingness to die for her and she asked Kris to say something… that was it. He could not find the words and for that moment I felt so bad for him, until all the trainees leapt out to surround him. There was that next gen of knights already formed, and i cried.

Mountain Crew Book 5, when the boys get recognition for what they did!

3. Elora leaving Storm for Ram. (Book 1)

Randy Abend When Elora kisses Storm at the airport and realizes she loves Ram and has to travel to Rammel and the finally meet at Rams home, and she questions herself, but Ram knows what to do. So awesome.

Lindsay Thompson I was so shocked when Elora left with Storm, at first and then realized it was Ram she was meant to be with.

The most emotional for me was when Elora told Ram she wasn’t picking him. I think I died inside! – Sarah, Assistant to Victoria

Danann

Debera A. Smith OK, so this is really harder than I thought. There are so many that as soon as I think of one I thinks of others. I laughed hysterically ove the toothpick scene and Storm waiting by the wall for Litha tore at my heart. But, I think I am going with the whole story line from when Elora tells Storm she can’t go with him that she loves Ram. Through her making the long trip to him and her fear when she    finds the cottage empty. Right up and through the love scene when Ram finally arrives and has to convince her again to stay.I think I held my breath the first time I read it until they were finally in bed!! And with that story line I laughed and cried and even both at once. SO, that is it!!

2.  Storm missing Rosie’s childhood. (Book 5)

Shanna Rankin Mine was when Storm was in the different dimension and couldn’t get back. I balled my eyes out cause he was missing out on seeing Rosie grow up and all those special moments.

Nelta Baldwin Mathias In GS when Deliverance loses Storm and he misses out on Rosie’s growing up….all I could think about was how he had wanted to teach her to ride a bike….broke my heart..

Diane Nix When Litha realized how much of their child’s development that Storm would miss while he was in another dimension.  Not only is it hard to lose your mate, worse when you know your mate is out there, wanting to get back, and your child has to grow up without a parent.

1. Elora giving birth in the wolves’ dolmen den. (Book 3)

Gemma Hopgood  My most emotional moment was when Elora was Trying to defend herself against the assassins sent from her own dimension to kill her, whilst heavily pregnant. She was taken in by the wolves who looked after her and the coming baby as she laboured without Ram, battered & bleeding from the fight, emotionally and physically drained from the labour so far thinking that he would not be able to find her! Believing she and the baby would die. The moment he found her and their hands touched I was in floods of tears! Softy I know!!

Tara L Cribb Absolutely hands down when Elora is fighting the assasins and the Wolves defend her and she gives birth to Helm injured and hurt. I was ugly crying and could not stop reading.

Rose Holub I think my favorite part was in A Summoner’s Tale when Elora goes into labor.What she goes through & who she is with is one of the most moving parts of the whole series to me. I have a profound love of wolves so that part of the story (& what led up to it) is very moving for me.

Pam James When Elora was Having Helm with the wolves protecting her. I was crying so hard. Then the Black Swan Knights came to rescue her. So Very emotional! (in A Summoners Tale)

Kriss Mosconi It has to be Elora having the baby in the wolves den by herself. Hurt and in pain then going into labor. Talk about edge of your seat.

RESULTS:

A. Gathering Storm is the most emotional book. Four out of the top nine answers came from events in Book 5.

B. When reporting emotion, you chose crying over laughter or surprise. Seven out of the top nine answers referred to tear spillage.

C. The #1 event received TWICE as many votes as #2. In other words, it won by a landslide.

In a class by itself.

1375256_669885726368817_563616439_nTHE FAMOUS

TOOTHPICK SCENE…

I admit to being clueless the first time a fan asked for a photo with me and a toothpick. LOL – Victoria

Cheryl Lewis Fennimore I think the toothpick scene has to be my all time favorite.  I wanted to stand up and cheer “Hell Yeah Elora; give ’em wood for me too!”

Eleanor Allen-Jenkins Laughter – Bakka’s uncontrollable laughter & taking notes when Elora killed a vampire with a toothpick!

Karin Vaughan Sedor I agree with Eleanor Allen-Jenkins as to the toothpick scene. I could just see them all standing there while Baka explained the whole event. That made me laugh so hard bout peed my pants.
 

p.s. Somebody always has to be different…

Fawn Phillips I think we all agree that these books have such a wide array of emotions that you feel as you read them. For me tho, one silly little part really stuck with me in Moonlight. A scene that had me rereading and laughing just because: “As to whether or not I’m here willingly…” She cocked her hip, put her hand there, and used a bored monotone to say, “Help. I’ve been kidnapped by a werewolf and there’s no escape.”

Rebecca Stigers The fight at Jefferson Unit when the Z team ignored Elora made me so mad I wanted to kick them and then I got happy when the young Vamp’s locked them in the pen that Blackie use to stay in! Now that made it all better!

Patricia Smith How about when Ram needed a paper bag to breathe in when Elora met Baka for the first time! ….snickers…Big bad man of B Team! Lol That was classic!!

Shannon Cutrer Armstrong When Storm proposes to Litha at Kay and Kindra’s wedding and he wants to get married right now!  I was was crying tears of joy.

Bobbi Kinion A Tale of Two Kingdoms when Duff and Aelsong are forced to stay away from each other and then finally being able to be with each other only to be ripped apart again just because of a war between their kind was so heart wrenching.

Mich Burr I was an emotional wreck whilst reading what happens to baka and how he was changed and the things he did 😦
 

Tina Talkington When I realized I was reading a ‘romance’ novel….and actually enjoying it…getting into the characters and breathlessly waiting for the next chapter.

 

An Interview with Grieve 3

AN INTERVIEW with Haversfil Grieve

This is a “clip” depicting Grieve’s introduction to the saga in Book IV, Moonlight. The following exchange is with his boss, Duff Torguil, prince of the Scotia Fae.

 At first it had annoyed Duff that Grieve jumped in his chair whenever Duff opened the door to the outer offices and spoke to him. Grieve had been appointed by his father without giving the prince any say in the matter. Whatsoever. As usual. But eventually he came to terms with the fact that there was an odd little bespectacled man sitting just outside the entrance to his suite of rooms. He managed this internal resolution largely by appreciating the humor of the thing. 

Grieve’s display of shock had become part of Duff’s day to day reality and one that he’d come to look forward to. In fact, he imagined that, should Grieve develop nerves of steel, he, Duff Torquil, Prince of the Scotia Fae and heir to the throne, would be forced to devise ways to deliberately create surprises, simply for the pleasure of seeing Grieve jump, gasp, and clutch his chest.

With that thought, Duff lowered his chin into his chest and chuckled while Grieve got himself together.

“Grieve,” Duff repeated.

“Aye, your Highness.”

“Please send an additional reception invitation to an Istvan Baka at the Black Swan Charitable Corporation offices, Charlotte Square.”

“But, sir, there are no odd invitations left to offer.”

“Are you goin’?”

Grieve pushed his glasses higher on his nose. “Oh, aye. My presence is expected.”

“Do you want to go?”

Grieve hesitated, mouth open, while trying to decide whether it would be in his interest to speak plainly or not. “I, ah…”

“The truth, man.”

“No’ particularly.”

“There you have it then. Problem solved.” Duff ducked his head back into his rooms and began to close the door.

“But, sir, your father…”

The prince opened the door and reappeared, but without his customary affable and approachable expression. He was clearly not pleased and might even have been scowling, although it could be hard to tell on such a beautifully smooth and youthful face.

“Who do you work for, Grieve?”

“You, sir?”

“Is that a question or an answer?”

“An answer, sir?”

“Hmmm. Well. I understand that my father hired you.”

“Aye, sir.”

“But he is no’ in a position to oversee the minutia of my affairs every day. Do you no’ agree?”

Grieve nodded. “Aye, sir?”

“Well, then it seems you must make a choice. Is your loyalty to the one who appointed you or to the one whom you serve?”

Grieve paused for only a moment before standing and pulling his shoulders back. “My loyalty is to you, sir. You can rely on me.”

Truly, Duff was half joking and had not expected the equivalent of a chivalric vow of service, but seeing that the little man was serious, the prince was touched and decided not to dismiss it as a jest.

“Thank you, Grieve. I will treasure your declaration and count on it, from this day forward.”

Looking like he had just experienced the best moment of his life, Grieve smiled like he’d just been knighted.

Duff withdrew and closed the door, but stowed away in his heart the knowledge that allies could be made from something so small as a little respect and recognition.

from Victoria’s Journal…

I arranged to meet Haversfil Grieve at a tea room of his choice. It’s actually a combination tea room and rare book store. It was an interesting place for an interview, eclectic but relaxing in the way that a combination of tea, old books and a cloudy day are guaranteed to relieve stress for a particular sort of person.

He was already seated when I arrived

and stood to welcome me when I approached his table. The subject’s presentation was even more proper than I expected. He cut a trim little figure wearing a three piece striped suit with a starched pocket square. The addition of an antique pocket watch with chain and round glasses in gold wire frames complete the suggestion of anachronism.  The only hint that there is an individual style hoping for an opportunity to escape the confines of caricature are the two-tone saddle oxfords on his feet.

 As he sat he reached in his vest pocket for the watch and glanced at it. I don’t know if that was to punctuate the fact that I was two minutes late or to send a message that his time was at a premium. I ordered a Russian Black tea, removed my scarf and began the recording.

Victoria: Mr. Grieve, thank you for joining me and for agreeing to give an interview.

Grieve: My pleasure, madam.

Victoria: I understand that you were a secretary in the king’s offices before you came to work for the prince. So let me ask how you find the position.

Grieve: (smiles ever so slightly) ‘Tis a vocation, but still a job, you know.

Victoria: Perhaps. Will you expand that thought?

Grieve: Well, as to the good, I am the totality of the prince’s staff whereas, in the king’s offices, I was one of several.

Victoria: Ah. Big fish, little pond.

Grieve: Pardon?

Victoria: Never mind. Please go on.

Grieve: I do no’ wish to complain nor do I wish to leave an impression of complaint.

Victoria: I understand and promise not to portray you as a whiner.

Grieve: (scowls at my use of the word “whiner”) As I was sayin’, I’m very pleased to be in the prince’s employ. Naturally. As anyone would be.

Victoria: But…

Grieve: The prince is very young and…

Victoria: And…

Grieve: And no’ entirely serious minded.

Victoria: (I study Grieve for a couple of heartbeats.) As he should be?

Grieve: Aye. As he should be.

Victoria: Can you give my readers an example?

Grieve: Well, when I’m workin’ I’m very concentrated on what I’m doin’, which means that somethin’ unexpected is likely to give me a start.

Victoria: Yes. I see. And how does that relate to your position as the prince’s secretary?

Grieve: (looks around nervously, leans forward, and speaks in a hushed tone)  There are times when I believe he may startle me deliberately.

Victoria: No.

Grieve: Aye. I have no proof, you understand. ‘Tis a suspicion only.

Victoria: (I find I need to clear my throat before proceeding.) Is that the only way in which you find his Highness not serious minded?

Grieve: Oh, no. He’s always plannin’ escapades with his fellows from school. Huntin’ or pubbin’ or galavantin’.

Victoria: Galavanting?

Grieve: Aye.

Victoria: You mean in the sense of cavorting?

Grieve: (narrows his eyes as if he suspects I may be putting him on) Enough about that. Time is short.

Victoria: As you wish. Tell me about your typical day.

Grieve: Very well. I arrive promptly at seven in the mornin’ and have a scone with Irish Breakfast Tea at my desk while I organize the prince’s early calls and appointments. The phone will begin ringin’ ‘round nine with people askin’ if the prince is available for this or that. It could be anythin’ from posin’ for a photo with a junior rugby team to bein’ a date for a charity date auction. (I giggle. Grieve seems to enjoy making me laugh and smiles in response.) Aye. I suppose ‘tis humorous at that. The money some females are willin’ to pay for his attention is astoundin’ to be sure.

‘Tis my job to make sure the prince’s schedule is populated with activities worthy of the royal presence, without double bookin’, and make sure he is where he needs to be when he needs to be there.

I leave between seven and nine dependin’ on the to-be-done stack.

Victoria: So you’re saying you work fourteen hours a day sometimes?

Grieve: Sometimes.

Victoria: And what do you do for fun?

Grieve: Fun?

Victoria: Would it be too personal a question to ask if you have a girlfriend?

Grieve: A girlfriend?

Victoria: A special friend then?

Grieve: (blushes) My work keeps me busy.

Victoria: Hmmm. Well, the prince is certainly lucky to have someone so completely devoted to him and dedicated to the work.

Grieve: (sits up a little straighter) You might think so, but he does no’ particularly appreciate my approach. He’s always sayin’ thin’s like, “Grieve. Go home.” Or, “Grieve, have you thought of takin’ up the fiddle?” I sincerely hope that he comes to better understand the gravity of his station before he becomes king or Fae Gods help us.”

Victoria: Don’t worry yourself about it, Mr. Grieve. I have it on good authority that Duff will be a fine king when the time comes.

Afterword.

Duff was unable to attend the dinner he arranged to thank the tour guides for their help. After giving up on persuasion as a tactic, he resorted to threats, but eventually Grieve acquiesced and shuffled out of the office to host the dinner party in the prince’s stead. The tour guide supervisor, who had not actually been invited, but crashed on the off chance she wouldn’t be turned away, shoved a girl out of the chair next to Grieve so that she could sit by his right hand.

The bottom half of the woman’s natural blonde hair was dyed fuchsia and practically glowed in the dark. She wore one ear bare and the other collared with a feather and wire design that hung to her collar bone. Grieve had no personal experience with leftovers from the punk era of London’s Soho District. That was probably why he found her so fascinating that he could barely look away.

 
Originally published on http://fangswandsandfairydust.blogspot.com/

Review Spotlight by Donna z. 2

TTKcover600x800

From Amazon.com

SONG AND DUFF’S STORY, A WINNER!, by Donna z. on January 11, 2014

This review is from: A Tale of Two Kingdoms (Knights of Black Swan, Book 6) (Kindle Edition)

Yep, still in love with the Order of the Black Swan series! A TALE OF TWO KINGDOMS, sixth in the series, was as engrossing as the previous five stories. Expect the Unexpected should be the theme of this series.
A TALE OF TWO KINGDOMS may be a novella but it is huge in the amount of information it provides the reader. This is a series that must be read in order. This is a series that must be read, period.

Finally we have the story of Aelsong, (Song) and Duff, (future King of the fae). They first meet in THE WITCH’S DREAM, book two of the series. It’s now one year later and Duff has decided enough is enough and the ongoing cold war between the elves and the fae in never going to end. Song is his mate and he can no longer live without her. While Duff is making his plans to be with Song, Glen is off on a secret mission for Elora to find out what started the war between the fae and the elves. Glen takes Rosie with him but a quest for truth on the war turns into more as Glen and Rosie face some truths of their own.

Yes, this is the story of Song and Duff but as always there are many sub-plots involved in the tale. We learn a few important facts about the council that governs the many different dimensions connected to earth. Angel Kellareal is going to play a larger role in this story than in previous ones. Old friends from previous books make their contributions to the storyline and I’m always so happy to see Ms. Danann include them in all the stories. Hate it when I become emotionally invested in the characters of the first few books of a series then, POOF, they disappear never to return in a major way. With this one little novella so many questions answered and so many possibilities for future books are created. LOVE IT!!

HIGHLY RECOMMEND to anyone over the age of 18 due to sexual content and the use language.

Thank you for the review Donna z.! We appreciate it! – Sarah