Tag Archives: Action

Release Blitz: Compromised by Emmy Curtis

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Curtis_Compromised_E-BookCompromised
Alpha Ops #5
by Emmy Curtis
Releasing March 1, 2016
Forever Yours

About Compromised

It was supposed to be the happiest day of her life. But when her wedding erupts in gunfire, Sadie Walker realizes this is not the life she wants-her fiancé’s work with Delta Force will always cast a shadow over their relationship. After leaving the hard-muscled hero at the altar, she thinks she’ll never see him again . . . until a chance encounter reveals that he still has a strong grip on her heart.

On a covert assignment overseas, Simon Tennant is shocked when he spots Sadie with another man. Jealousy flares, as does an irresistible urge to keep her protected. Amid a dangerous game of international espionage, he’ll have to convince Sadie just how perfect they’ve always been together. This time, nothing will take precedence over winning her back, no matter the cost to his cover-or his life . . .

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Excerpt

“We might not be friends, Sadie. But we are something.”

She moved her head so that Simon let go of her chin. “You used to tell me that I was your everything. Your port in a storm. Your sanctuary when you came back from a mission. Did you ever wonder what you were to me? You were the man who always disappeared. The man who was there, but only until your phone rang. I loved you, but you were a ghost to me. Is that the ‘something’ you mean?”

“Sadie.” He looked devastated, and she cursed herself for saying those things. As true as they were, she hadn’t wanted to explore their relationship right then. Nor ever if truth be told.

“But that’s all just history, isn’t it?” she said, trying to sound flip.

He leaned in. She knew he meant to kiss her, and she wanted to move, wanted to slap his face and run. That’s what she should have done.

Instead she allowed her mouth to open slightly as her eyes fluttered closed. Just one kiss. A safe, goodbye kiss…and then all rational thought escaped her.

His tongue touched hers and her senses and nerve endings came alive. He felt like home. A dark, impenetrable, warm and sexy home. Her heartbeat raced and butterflies heralded the coming of spring in her stomach. He still wanted her. She still wanted him. She didn’t care about anything else.

She held his face as she stood and climbed astride his thighs, still kissing him. His hands went to her breasts, running the backs of his hands over the swell above her neckline. And then he found the zipper of the dress, and pulled it down to her waist.

He yanked her toward him and put his mouth around her nipples, through her bra. As he sucked and bit she arched her back, aching for him to make her feel more. And more.

She grabbed his short hair and rammed her mouth against his. She wanted to hurt him, to be hurt by him, to bruise her mouth, so she’d be sure him being here wasn’t some crazy illusion. But mostly so he’d regret lying to her and leaving her.

His dick strained against his cargo pants, and she ground herself against it, moving her hips so that she could feel the whole length of him.

“Stop,” he whispered, out of breath. “Not like this. I don’t want to hurt you.”

“Now you decide you don’t want to hurt me?” she whispered back.

His hand splayed against her throat, dragging his fingers slowly from her chin to her bra. His mouth followed, slow and firm. She wanted to protest, but his tongue snaked a hot trail over her pulse points making her heart race. She’d protest in a minute.

“You’ve changed so much,” he murmured against her throat.

She was about to respond when he found his way under her skirt to her panties. He slipped under them as if he was trained in stealth. Which, come to think of it, he was.

About Emmy CurtisEmmy_Curtis

Emmy Curtis is an editor and a romance writer. An ex-pat Brit, she quells her homesickness with Cadbury Flakes and Fray Bentos pies. She’s lived in London, Paris and New York, and has settled for the time being, in North Carolina. When not writing, Emmy loves to travel with her military husband and take long walks with their Lab. All things considered, her life is chock full of hoot, just a little bit of nanny. And if you get that reference…well, she already considers you kin.

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Book Blast & Giveaway: The Proving by Ken Brosky

Proving KenAbout The Proving 

It’s been 100 years since the Specters invaded Earth. Like ghosts they haunt the planet, devouring any human being foolish enough to venture outside of the last remaining protected cities. For some humans, venturing out isn’t a choice–it’s an opportunity to prove yourself to your clan. But when a coterie of New Adults undertaking a mission deep in Specter territory discover a terrible secret, they quickly find that everything they’ve learned may be wrong … and Earth is in grave danger.

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Excerpt

Skye took a deep breath, held it, then forced it out quickly between her pursed lips. The loud whistle seemed ear-splitting, jolting her nerves — too late to change her mind now, she twisted her body, her boots digging into the gravel as she fell back and faced the farming contraptions. She lifted her rifle, seeing the Specter’s strange glow change, move, and then without warning its crocodile face emerged from the body of the large machine. Its mouth opened. Cleo fell back, screaming. A claw phased through, reaching out for Skye.

She fired her rifle. The blue proton bullet tore through the creature’s arm, sending yellow sparks fluttering like butterflies into the air. The Specter’s mouth opened wide, revealing sharp, finger-length teeth, so close that Skye could see their serrated edges.

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BookBlast Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 2/15/16
ENTRY-FORM

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

Review & Giveaway: Blue Voyage by Diana Renn

imageBlue Voyage
by Diana Renn
Published October 13th 2015 by Viking Books for Young Readers
Hardcover, 464 pages
ISBN13: 9780670015597

An intricately crafted mystery set in the contemporary Middle East.

Renn creates an exciting mystery taking place throughout Turkey. If you’ve ever wanted to visit Turkey but couldn’t for whatever reason, now you can navigate the vibrant country from your living room. The descriptions are lush, the customs, traditions, people and culture well described. It’s exciting zigzagging all over this colorful county. Lots of historical points referenced make this read both exciting and educational without being boring. Renn takes you from coastal setting to inland, numerous tourist sites visited.

Zan takes a little getting used you until you understand what she’s grappling with. A mercurial teenager, trying to fit in with her peers, her family life is in the spotlight, even more so when her politician father’s infidelity is discovered. She deals with vitiligo, trying to accept her condition, great on Renn’s part for bringing awareness to this autoimmune disease. Zan’s a smart girl, lonely, trust issues along with sticky fingers, she finds solace in rock climbing, when you become more familiar with this prickly young lady she actually grows on you.

The mystery aspect was intriguing, especially with artifacts, forgeries, mafia, corruption and authentic treasure pieces at stake all actual instances plaguing Turkey, which makes this read even more riveting. Artifacts smuggling is a serious issue as Turkey is all too familiar. Renn merely scratches at the surface of this ongoing challenge. Plenty of noteworthy characters keeping you on your toes as you seek the truth along with Zan and her family and friends.

About Diana Rennimage

Diana Renn is the author of the young adult mystery novels TOKYO HEIST, LATITUDE ZERO and BLUE VOYAGE all published by Viking/Penguin. She is also the Fiction Editor at YARN (Young Adult Review Network), an award-winning online magazine featuring short-form writing for teens. Diana grew up in Seattle and now lives outside of Boston with her husband and son.

Connect with Diana:
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Giveaway:

Enter for a chance to win a copy of Blue Voyage, please complete the giveaway form below. Open to US residents only. Ends 10/30/15
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Spotlight & Guest Post: Blue Voyage by Diana Renn

imageBlue Voyage
by Diana Renn
Published October 13th 2015 by Viking Books for Young Readers
Hardcover, 464 pages
ISBN13: 9780670015597

An intricately crafted mystery set in the contemporary Middle East.

Zan is a politician’s daughter and an adrenaline junkie. Whether she’s rock climbing or shoplifting, she loves to live on the edge. But she gets more of a rush than she bargained for on a forced mother–daughter bonding trip to Turkey, where she finds herself in the crosshairs of an antiquities smuggling ring. These criminals believe that Zan can lead them to an ancient treasure that’s both priceless and cursed. Until she does so, she and her family are in grave danger. Zan’s quest to save the treasure—and the lives of people she cares about—leads her from the sparkling Mediterranean, to the bustle of Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar, to the eerie and crumbling caves of Cappadocia. But it seems that nowhere is safe, and there’s only so high she can climb before everything comes tumbling down.

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The Phantom Siblings in Blue Voyage

When I first started writing Blue Voyage, my main character, then named Abby, had a sister. Since my previous two novels featured only children, and since I happen to have a sister in real life, I was excited to explore this dynamic in a story.

Abby and her first-draft sister, Lauren, were polar opposites. Abby was reserved and reclusive. She thought deeply about things, and explored her feelings and impressions in a travel journal. Lauren, in contrast, was outgoing, a risk-taker, sometimes reckless. Both were reacting in different ways to their parents’ impending divorce: Abby withdrawing into her thoughts and her journal, Lauren acting out.

Their differences led to tension-infused dialogue. My story opened with a fractured family on a pleasure cruise in the Turkish Riviera, and the siblings bickered endlessly. At one point the mother, in exasperation, pounced on them for being such self-entitled spoiled brats that all they could do on an expensive vacation was argue over petty things.

The mom’s words hit me hard as soon as I wrote them. She had spoken the truth. The girls were coming across as whiny and bratty. Mom couldn’t bear to spend a three-day cruise in their company; could I, or a reader, tolerate them for four hundred pages? Rereading their dialogue, I saw they were arguing in order to highlight their differences, as well as to establish some backstory, but their spats did not propel the plot forward. If anything, they obscured the mystery plot that I was trying to get to—and hadn’t yet gotten to by page fifty.

After a great deal of soul-searching and brainstorming, I made a difficult decision. I was going to lose one of the sisters. I was disappointed because I’d wanted to write about siblings, but maybe this was not the book for that. I already had a complex mystery plot in mind, and a rich setting. The family dynamic with the parents’ reasons for divorce was deep enough without adding a sibling into the mix. Besides, I have found that it is simply easier to write a mystery without a sibling to deal with, unless the two are going to team up and become sleuths—and these two girls didn’t seem likely to do that for some reason. Maybe they were too busy fighting.

First I tried to solve the problem by making one of the sisters missing. Maybe dead. But that missing sister still took up residence in my character’s brain, and she still had to be dealt with on the page – in memories, in speculations, in missing person searches, in investigations. I like missing person stories, but that wasn’t the kind of mystery I wanted to write. I knew I wanted a missing artifact too, and the two plotlines could complete for attention. After all, what could compare with the loss of a sibling?

Then there was the question of which sister to cut. I loved Abby’s introspection, her rich inner life. I also love Lauren’s spunk and sass.

I couldn’t decide. So I took a deep breath and I started from scratch. I just wrote in one character’s voice and didn’t give her a name.

After fifty pages, I stepped back and realized this new character had elements of both Abby and Lauren. The result? A more nuanced and complex character. She was a risk-taker – a chronic shoplifter, a partier, a rock climber – who was also afraid to reveal her real self to her peers and the world. She spoke back to her mother and her wit could be acerbic, but she also withdrew into herself and experienced moments of intense reflection. She was concerned with her public image, at times superficial, but felt very deeply.

I named this hybrid character Zan, short for Alexandra. A name that had nothing to do with either of the names I’d begun with because this was a brand new person. Yet the original sisters were a part of her still, like phantoms.

Interestingly, I did get to explore a sister dynamic in the end, just not in the way I had planned. Zan’s mother has a sister, Aunt Jackie, an expatriate widow who is living in Turkey. Zan’s mother and aunt are now the bickering duo, but their arguments are less frequent, and more purposeful for the plot. Zan also meets an alluring girl about her age on a cruise, and this girl, Sage, becomes a stand-in sister during Zan’s voyage—but without the years of drama I might have to delve into with a real sibling.

Creating and then abandoning these original siblings gave me an important new tool in my writing toolbox. Now if I see siblings emerging in a story draft (especially twins) I take a hard look at them. I wonder if they both really need to be there. Are they distinct individuals? If so, great, I’ll keep them both. If one feels like a drag to write about, or their scenes aren’t energized, or I’m straying from my main story too much, I can ask myself if these two people are really just two personality elements of one complex individual. If I’m genuinely interested in a tension between them, I can look at other character duos and see if that tension could be better played out with another pair.

They say you can’t choose your family, and I guess that’s true. But the great thing about writing is that you can. If anything, choosing and changing up family dynamics can enrich the story. And the best part? Nobody’s feelings get hurt.

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About Diana Rennimage

Diana Renn is the author of the young adult mystery novels TOKYO HEIST, LATITUDE ZERO and BLUE VOYAGE all published by Viking/Penguin. She is also the Fiction Editor at YARN (Young Adult Review Network), an award-winning online magazine featuring short-form writing for teens. Diana grew up in Seattle and now lives outside of Boston with her husband and son.

Connect with Diana:
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads