Monday, April 24, 2017

FEATURED BLOG TOUR: TORN SPEEDOS!

A “shaggy dog” is a story of less than 1000 words 
that ends on a groan-inducing pun. 
What happens when a guy accused of stealing a type of onion defends himself by saying, “I was only taking a leek”? 
Or at the insect Olympics, where certain bugs hold the stopwatches, because “flies time”? 
That’s when you’re in the world of the “shaggy dog,” a type of story that ends on a funny, if horrible, pun that leaves the reader moaning and groaning...but laughing and eager to be abused by the next distortion of the English language. We have 101 such crimes against the mother tongue in this amusing collection.

COMMENT TO WIN!
The author will be awarding a digital copy of his book, 
Meanwhile Back at the Ranch, to a random commenter. 
Just comment to be entered!

FIVE STARS!
Reviewed by Jeffrey Ross
Five Stars—Funny and Clever! 
This is a fun book for everyone—especially if you love word play and the nuances of the English language! 
Included in the 101 Shaggy Dogs are topics from dictators to dentures to small towns to colonialism and humanitarianism. Each of the 101 stand-alone 1000-word stories (all finely crafted, I might add) end with a word play phrase. 

BUY AT:

AUTHOR BIO 
Elliott Capon has three novels in print: the thoughtful horror story The Prince of Horror, and two funny whodunits that take place in the world of Poverty-Row Hollywood of the 1930s, The Corps Vanishes and Meanwhile Back at the Ranch, the latter two published by Rogue Phoenix Press. He has had stories (and reprints!) in Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine, Frostfire Worlds, Disturbed Digest, and the original-story anthologies Zippered Flesh and Uncommon Assassins. He lives with his current wife and as-yet undisowned son.  

Find out more about the author at:

EXCERPT 
Sy Donovan was the biggest man at American International Relief Services ("AIRS" to English speakers; just "RELIEF" to the rest of the world). It wasn't that Sy was a top executive: he was the biggest man in the organization because he was six-five and weighed two hundred and ninety pounds.
RELIEF was a group much like CARE or the Red Cross, which responded to disasters all over the world: floods, famines, fires, plagues, the aftermath of war. RELIEF workers would, pushing aside bureaucrats and the obstructive complaints of tinhorn dictators, literally invade an area in need and set to work. RELIEF had doctors, nurses, engineers, epidemiologists, nutritionists, psychologists, and caring professionals in dozens of other professions, all of whom would, at a moment's notice, drop their regular practices and lives in order to fly halfway or all the way around the world to come to the aid of people who needed help.
Sy Donovan was RELIEF's most active field administrator. He had a working knowledge of medicine, logistics, and most of the other skills possessed by the RELIEF volunteers, but his job was to see that things got done. He was usually on the first plane or helicopter to reach the disaster area, he decided where the medical tents would go up, where the portable latrines would be placed (don't laugh), who would look after the children. With his imposing size and full head of bushy gray hair and Linolnesque beard to match—and blessed with the personality of the offspring of Alexander the Great and a lioness—Sy Donovan backed down from no one. People who "didn't want to" or "couldn't do" something to help, when confronted by the formidable giant, found themselves suddenly very willing and able. Sy Donovan had saved more lives than penicillin.
After a drought of several years, the tiny African nation of Tomalaland was hit by weeks of ferocious rains. The ground had dried to the consistency of concrete and therefore could not absorb the water; flooding was of almost Biblical proportions. Entire towns had been buried under a combination of water, mud, and uprooted trees; two million people found themselves homeless, foodless, clothesless, medicineless, hopeless. The day after the rains stopped, RELIEF got to work. A huge plane was quickly loaded with all the supplies to sustain at least a few thousand people for a few days. Other planes, trucks, and ships were to following within the next few days, but one plane had to get there first. Sy Donovan was, of course, aboard this plane.
In what had once been the capital of Guaziville, and which was now a sea of muck and debris, five thousand weary people made their way to the remains of the airport to await this lifebringing plane. The airport's single working radio was in contact with the plane, and the soldiers nursing the radio had found enough dry wire and undamaged equipment left over to hook the radio up to loudspeakers so that everyone present could share the joyful anticipation of the arrival of their saviors.
Unfortunately, the storms were not quite finished; when the plane was still an hour out of Guaziville, the pilot radioed—and five thousand people heard—that the plane had been struck by lightning. Two of their four engines were dead; a third was laboring. He was losing altitude, struggling to get to the airport.
Five thousand people prayed: to the gods of Islam and Christianity and to smaller, lesser-known, older tribal deities. The pilot reported that he was skimming the treetops, hoping to get as close to the airport as possible before the plane with its food, medicine, clean water and warm blankets finally hit the ground. The five thousand people at the airport were praying aloud now, crying out to the various parts of Heaven for assistance, for a miracle.
Then, in the distance—a speck! It was a plane—the RELIEF plane! Smoke poured from three of the four propellers. The sound that reached ten thousand ears was of a sputtering and choking. The plane dipped and bounced and rose and fell as if it were riding over invisible speed bumps. The people at the airport prayed like they had never prayed before.
Incredibly, the plane kept coming closer. A few people dared hope it would make it all the way to the runway. Then…closer…closer…closer… Hope was reborn! A few more feet…a few more seconds…! Come on…come on…yes…yes, yes….??
YES! The plane touched down on the holed, muddy runway just as the fourth engine exploded with a tired-sounding whuff! and the propeller stopped turning.
Five thousand people breathed out all at once, each silently thanking their God or gods. The miracle had happened. The plane had landed safely.

A few seconds later, a door on the side crashed open, and from the plane itself emerged a big Sy of RELIEF.

ABOUT THE COVER
Note from Ms. G: 
I was intrigued by this book as soon as I saw the title! 
I had such a good time working with the author on this cover. 

THIS IS ABSOLUTELY DELIGHTFUL!!!  
...almost exactly what I had in mind.  Thank you!!!!!
--Elliott Capon

BUY AT:

Monday, April 17, 2017

FEATURED BLOG TOUR: HALF-BUILT HOUSES

All the taunt intrigue and compelling personalities 
of a classic, courtroom thriller 
combined with the twists and turns of an 
engrossing murder mystery in a Canadian setting.
--Reviewed by Nancy A. Defoe

Buy at: Rogue Phoenix Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble
(NOTE: This book is not one of my cover designs.)

BLURB
Charley Ewanuschuk has been mistreated all his life and now survives by moving through society as unnoticed as possible. However, when a murder occurs behind the half-built house he is squatting in society takes notice of the introverted homeless man as he becomes the prime murder suspect. Brian Cox managed to charm his way into a good job in a national law firm but, when the recession hit, he learned that charm is a disposable commodity. Fired by the firm and forced to take on Legal Aid files to pay the bills, Charley's murder trial becomes Brian's first major case. However, this will be no straightforward case. As the trial progresses it becomes apparent forces are working behind the scenes to ensure the homeless man takes the fall for a crime. Told from the points of view of the accused, the lawyer, the detective and the manipulator, Half-Built Houses provides all the thrilling intrigue, clever ingenuity and interesting individuals readers have come to expect form classic courtroom dramas.

Author Eric Keller is a lawyer living in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
COMMENT FOR A CHANCE TO WIN!
Eric will be awarding a copy of one of his ebooks to a random commenter.  

4-1/2 STARS!

The city of Calgary in Alberta, Canada in the backdrop for Eric Keller’s intense and gripping legal thriller the Half Built Houses...Eric Keller exposes the reader to not only the grittiness of the legal system but also the vicious realities of prison life. Half Built Houses is filled to the brim with raw emotions and conflicts. Every time the reader thinks they have it figured out Keller throws in another twist that sends the reader in a new direction.   
--Reviewed by Tamara White

4-1/2 STARS!
Eric Keller has written a truly great book here. It is filled with interesting characters, all of whom are believable. Charley, a lead character, is homeless and tortured and I felt ever icy shiver of his life on the streets of Calgary...a great story.
--Reviewed by G. Lloyd Helm

 EXCERPT
After the car had been towed away, Charley had gone back to the basement, but he heard sirens and had to flee before he could collect his belongings. Knowing he would stand out as an oddity wandering about in a rich residential area as people started leaving their homes for work, he headed back across the river to the downtown core where the homeless merely blended into the cement. There he numbly walked the icy streets before settling into an ATM kiosk to warm up and rest.
Sitting on the wet floor, he did a quick inventory. He still had his good coat, two cheeseburgers, four dollars, and shoes, but no socks, gloves, or hat. It was thirty below and he had nowhere to go, and he could already feel the dirty slush on the floor soaking through his jeans. Over all the years he had been in Calgary, Charley had been in some extremely difficult spots, but this was one of the worst situations he had faced.
As he pulled one of the slightly squashed cheeseburgers out of his pocket, the key to the cheap padlock he had put on the basement door fell onto the floor. He picked it up. Despite being twenty-five years old, this was the only key he had ever owned. He remembered the joy he felt when he closed the lock for the first time. It was more than simply having a place of his own; it was a sense of survivor's pride because he could look past making it through each day and ponder a future for himself. Now he realized he could not be found carrying the key, so he slipped it into the slot in the bank machine, the slot where people threw away their receipts showing how much money they had in their account.
He was only able to stay in the kiosk for an hour before a security guard found him. The guard clearly did not want to send the pathetic man out into the exceptionally harsh cold, but he sheepishly said that the bank employees would be showing up soon, and they would give him grief if they found someone sleeping next to the bank machine. Charley left without a word.
Having nowhere else to go, he instinctively walked to the day labourer corner. Because the weather was so bad and he was there so early, he got picked up right away to shovel snow. Charley had worked for the boss before, and the man took pity on him, giving him a good pair of gloves and a toque.

~ * ~
  
Even though he had been extremely tired and his feet had screamed with cold, Charley had been content to push a shovel all day as the mundane, physical work was relaxing and allowed him to ponder his situation. By the end of the day, he had forced himself to conclude it was not hopeless. He could not go back to the house he had been using, but that did not mean he could not find another abandoned construction site to use. It would take some time, but he had time; he had little else, but he had time. When the work was done, he was driven back to the corner, given sixty dollars, and told to keep the gloves and the hat. It was enough money to get a room at the hostel for the night. Life would continue to be hard, but it would not be impossible.
As he started walking away, a truck pulled up, unloading another crew of day labourers, and one of the workers called out to him, "Hey, you. Guy who never talks."
He recognized the man as a regular at the corner whom he had worked with a few times. He pointed at himself questioningly.
"Yeah, you. Just thought you should know that the cops were out here this morning showing your picture around. You may want to lay low for a few days."
The man knew Charley well enough not to expect a response, so he turned to jog after his friends, leaving Charley alone on the frozen sidewalk. Renewed panic struck at him, easily pushing away the optimism he had gained throughout the day. He had not even considered the police would look for him. He had always seen himself as a mere visitor moving about beneath the notice of the real inhabitants of the city, so the thought that someone would look for him never occurred to him. Charley had never been to jail, but he had overheard much about the place from day labourers, and being locked up was one of his greatest fears among an impressive list of fears. It was not actually being deprived of his freedom so much as being constantly surrounded by people with no privacy or reprieve that he knew would be an unimaginable hell for him. He could not go to jail.


Buy at: Rogue Phoenix Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

FEATURED BLOG TOUR: JUNE

DURING THIS BLOG TOUR, 
the author will be giving away
a digital copy to a random commenter. 
JUST COMMENT BELOW TO ENTER!

Living a lie in a web of deceit, Cassandra finds the courage to challenge her controlling husband. She sets in motion a tragic chain of events that leads her across Europe from the medieval city of Tallinn to the showboating glamour of Nice. Cast aside and the victim of cruel revenge, Cassandra fights for her future and discovers she is not alone. Her new-found strength is tested to its limits, for where love is concerned there is often a reckoning.

REVIEW--5 STARS! 

This is a world-class piece of literature—a finely crafted book that combines several genres successfully. On one level, JUNE functions as an academic or campus novel—much of the text revolves around the detailed, complicated, scholarly world of Professor Perry’s anthropological research and love affair machinations. It also has robust elements of a detective story when super-sleuth David outs a cheating husband. But JUNE most significantly and boldly illuminates a woman’s “sensual” coming of age (somewhat like Kate Chopin’s novel The Awakening) as heroine Cassie begins to unshackle herself from a life of emotional servitude and learns to love again. As a writer, I was humbled by the workmanship and power of this novel. Read JUNE—you will never forget the story.
--Jeffrey Ross

REVIEW--4 STARS! 
Testimonial: I am male. This is a woman’s book, PG-rated, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
--Gillespie Lamb

AUTHOR BIO
Alicia Stone has recently returned to the UK. She is enjoying the south coast and exploring rural villages using back roads and public footpaths. The great thing about English villages is that they have amazing old churches full of history and stories--often with a pub next door. 
To find out more about Alicia, contact her on her blog: aliciastoneauthor.blogspot.co.uk

ABOUT THE COVER FROM THE AUTHOR
You are amazing. I feel part of a team when I work with you. Thank you.
--Alicia Stone
(I'm delighted JUNE is a cover from Designs by Ms. G!)

EXCERPT 
Women's toilets, a curious place for confidences. Strangers become acquainted in the queue for the loo. Teenage girls discuss conquests as they hog mirrors, applying make-up. Cassandra had once seen a laughing group of Japanese women roll their trousers to their knees, fastidious in their preparation for a Western bathroom experience. She would have given much to understand their chatter. Quite extraordinary what she overheard about people's lives in toilets, but this was gossip, and the gossip was about her. She knew these voices, Malory Jacque and Miranda Pym.
"Of course Cassandra's very nice. Oh, Lord. No paper. For heaven's sake. A hotel of this repute. I shall speak to the manager. Andrew knows him from cricket."
"Hang on. I'll pass some under the door. Lord, this reminds me of school."
Cassandra heard scuffles and giggles.
"She's pleasant…easy-going in that reserved sort of way. Good for dinner parties."
"Thanks. Oh yes. Marvellous. Pop her next to anyone. She's sort of…you know…"
"Neutral? A foil?"
"That's it. Rather beige."
Cassandra froze in her cubicle. The toilets flushed and the voices moved over to the wash-hand basins.
"Oh, no. Would you look at that? They've changed the hand cream. I always liked the wild heather. This won't do."
A blast from the hand driers drowned any further eavesdropping. The door swung open; there was a clack of heels…
"But when you consider the husband…"
The door closed.
Cassandra waited for a moment before waving her hand at the automatic flush and coming out. Standing before the mirror, she remembered what Perry had said at breakfast.
"Sweetheart. Do you think that shade of blue suits you? Book club today isn't it? You've never worn the cashmere I brought you from Cairo. I found it in your closet the other day."
She had poured his coffee, put another round of toast in the retro Italian toaster, and slipped into their bedroom. The unopened duty-free bag stood upright in the bottom of the 'hers' wardrobe. Shrugging off the blouse chosen earlier, she removed the ribbon tag from her gift and pulled the soft jumper over her head, making for the kitchen.
"Pussy-cat, lovely. Want to stroke you." He didn't. Instead, Perry was out of his seat even as she offered more toast.
"Carbs, Cassandra, carbs. Got to look after the waistline." He held his stomach in and blew her a routine kiss, but she was already moving towards the sink.
Would the puff of air reach the cupboard housing the seldom-used twelve-place dinner service, or would the vapour simply dissipate mid kitchen, she wondered.
"Late tonight, some of the faculty…a little do. Back on the Nine o'clock. Have fun with the ladies."
Cassandra had dropped the toast into the bin and stared out of the window. Next-door's cat had emerged from a clump of daisies and shuddered, the tail bolt upright. Cassandra loathed cats, especially when they treated her garden as their personal litter tray. He, for the cat was a Tom, was the same shade of grey as her jumper.
Now she was staring at the reflection in the mirror. Her face lost, framed by the heavy ornate coving and flock-wallpaper of the Victorian hotel. She had often pondered what people would say about her. They might use affable or good-natured if a little shy. What they didn't see was that she was bored; Cassandra was bored to her very core. Not languid though, never that. There was so much that people did not see. Cassandra composed herself, took a breath, and fixed her smile as she hurried to re-join the discussion about a book she had no wish to discuss.

~ * ~

A creature of routine, she went shopping after Book Club. Every trip to the supermarket was at best an exhausting in-your-face reality experience, at worst a sensory assault. From the seductive smell of the in-store baked bread and the sweet blowsy lilies in pretty buy-me cellophane wrappers to the whole gamut of riotous colour, compelling fonts and unashamed branding the weekly shop was a marketing horror to be endured. Enthusiastic staff spoke of must-buys or operational matters over the public address system interrupting the bland music and the periodic wails of infants distressed or seeking attention. Employees wearing uniform fleece offered tiny plastic pots as if shoppers were at some impromptu cocktail party or were institutionalised, standing in line to take their medication before bedtime.
"Can I tempt you to try a French cheese on offer today? Our own-brand mayonnaise has been voted Britain's favourite. Would you like to see if you can taste the difference?"
There were endless choices, from the selection of three types of trolley at the entrance to the alternative methods of checkout at the exit. Early on in their relationship during a trip to the supermarket, Perry asked that Cassandra take on the responsibility.
"Sweetheart, shopping is ghastly. You are so much better at all this pointless busyness than I. Look about you," he glowered. "Eighty percent of the people here are women. You are among your own kind; you know what to do; you have the time. Lucky, lucky girl, whereas poor old me, cash rich; time poor."
Money wasn't a problem. Perry urged her to spend what she liked. They could afford to live well on his salary and his grandfather's trust fund. Bunty and Reg, his parents, bought the couple's house as a wedding gift. Early on in their relationship, Bunty had trumpeted aloud at Cassandra's modest choice of food retailer and her student habit of shopping around for bargains.
"My dear, a housewife is judged by her table. Top end for groceries, always. It's what Perry's used to."
Cassandra did the shopping, coasting in neutral following a set path. Her face assumed a forced smile. She manoeuvred the trolley around slow mannerly pensioners, avoiding the child, skidding to a halt in the detergent aisle. She read labels comparing saturated fat and salt levels, catering for Perry's current preferences and tastes. He was most particular. Cassandra willed herself not to judge the large woman with the trolley stacked high with snack and convenience food or to think too uncharitably of the salad afterthought perched on top of the high-fat, sugar-laden mountain. She rejected the self-checkout points, aware of her need for human interaction, chatting at the till, agreeing that the weather was shocking and that the three-for-two offer on the Imperial Leather soap was excellent value.
"My husband won't try any other. His mother uses the same brand…you know, a family thing." Cassandra despised the words and herself for the weakness that was her norm.
The cashier listened with her head to one side. Was there a fleeting edge of solidarity or sympathy in the amber eyes? Perhaps it was the magnifying effect of the tortoiseshell glasses. Cassandra felt odd and lightheaded but conscious of a moment of female kinship and understanding with a woman she'd never met before.
"Are you alright dear?" The amber was almost orange, owlish, and wild.
Cassandra considered the question as she used her credit card. The first attempt failed as she tapped in the wrong number. Concentrating, she began the process again until she met with success. She stopped in the act of lifting the bag of shopping into her trolley.
"I think…I am."
The cashier reappraised her as she handed over the receipt.
"Changes take time to work their way through, don't you find? The trick is to make the right choices. Take care now."
There was no one behind her in the queue. The adjacent cashier was busy. No one else had overheard. What a curious exchange; not at all the usual bland pleasantries between staff and customers. Cassandra wheeled her trolley away, leaning against the metal frame. Glancing back at the checkout, the grey-haired woman was changing her till roll and did not look up.
Driving home through the rain, Cassandra thought about the book club. Perry had suggested she join. One evening at dinner, he announced that everything was arranged. The wife of Perry's occasional golf partner would introduce her to the club and pick Cassandra up, taking her to the first meeting.
Debbie, in a red sports car with a mane of tawny hair, tanned, wearing a lime green trouser suit, pulled up outside sounding three long beeps. Cassandra rushed out of the house, flustered with a wave of greeting. This went unobserved as Debbie shot into her driveway, executing a three-point-turn, which halted two inches from the next-door's spotless and regimented recycling bins.
"Hop in. Running late. A cul-de-sac in Westmead," she surveyed the immaculate new-builds, "bad luck. My book choice this month so they can't start without me. Got the top down…nice day…about time. Awful summer, you'd never think we lived in the south of England for pity's sake."
Cassandra held out her hand to no avail as the car sped forward.
"Belt up."
The recollection of that first meeting made Cassandra grimace and smile. She couldn't recall the name of the first book, the plot, or the characters, only that awful new girl paralysis, all the other women staring, appraising, and judging. Fighting an overwhelming instinct to run away, she defaulted to a learned behaviour; she smiled, crossed and uncrossed her legs, agreed and disagreed, nodded and listened, wholly intent on blending in. That was three years ago. Members came and went, but the core remained the same. Perry liked to ask her about the group, wives of cronies in his wider circle, so she stayed. Debbie stayed the course too, catching Cassandra's eye at the more outrageous comments, winking with mirth at the absurd.
Perry wanted to know who was bright. Who led the group? Who did most of the talking? That was in the early days. Of late, he had not asked much about the reading group, but Debbie had become a friend. An unlikely pairing perhaps, but, as the first meeting finished and they walked towards the waiting Mercedes, Deborah Gore-Hamilton said,
"I've got your number, Cassy Bishop. If you need an ally, I've got your back."
That was how their friendship started. Cassandra was no longer alone.


To find out more about Alicia, contact her on her blog: aliciastoneauthor.blogspot.co.uk

Thursday, March 30, 2017

BLOG TOUR FEATURE: THE COTERIE DECLARATION

Genre: Young Adult/Dystopian
from Rogue Phoenix Press
The author will be awarding an ebook copy of one of his titles to one randomly drawn commenter. 

Excerpt
A sound at the door steals my attention. I wait for Gacheru to enter but nothing happens. On the floor underneath the door, an envelope sticks halfway into the room. I pick it up and work my fingers underneath the sealed flap and run my fingers the entire length.
The note reads,
Please put the twenty-five billion back.
I sit on the bed as the weight of the words hits me. Nothing in the words themselves denotes any kind of emotion. Except for maybe the "please." Still, a cursory reading initiates a panic attack in my body. A brown bag sits on the floor. I roll off the bed, hitting the floor hard. I pull the bag to my face, scrunch my body to the fetal position, and rock and breathe…

Reviews
5 Stars
From the first page the reader is dumped right into the action. This book is full of suspense and action and moves along very quickly. Well done, Mr. McClain. I highly recommend this book.
– Courtney Bears

4.5 Stars
From the first page, the reader is thrust into Dakarai’s high anxiety, speechless world. The entire novel moves at a thrilling neck breaking speed. Even when The Coterie Declaration ends the reader know it’s not over.  
– Tamara White

4.5 Stars
The Coterie Declaration begins with the action-packed FBI pursuit of Dak after he attempts to hack into a major bank...to redistribute money to charitable intuitions and organizations; a somewhat modern-day Robin Hood...sentenced to a so-called rich-kid reform school, he soon becomes a pawn in a sinister plot...Dak comes into connection with several characters...all of whom have secrets and pieces of the puzzle Dak needs to figure out what is going on. The action and intrigue continues at a fast pace...The reader empathizes with the young Dak...to not only survive, but to put a stop to the secret plans of the Coterie Declaration.  
– J.C.
Author Bio
Richard C. McClain II, "The Storyteller"—an advocate of imagination and a deliverer of truth through creative writing. Born in Kansas City, Missouri, Richard is one of five children who was taught to dream and believe that anything is possible. This thought premise inspired Richard to pursue the creative arts through music, theatre and writing. Richard later became a pastor, where from the pulpit he used his storytelling abilities to bring the word to life in the hearts of the congregation. Richard is the husband of Sharon, and father of Nicholas, Nicola, Nathan, Natalie, and Nadia. He has had the privilege of honing his storytelling craft and understands the balance between imagination, fantasy, and real life.

"Consider this, before the story is ever heard, it is active, pulsating, and full of passion. It needs but the storyteller to tell it."

BUY NOW at:

Friday, March 17, 2017

NEW COVER FOR ST. BATZY!

In honor of St. Patrick's Day
I'm introducing a new cover for
ST. BATZY & THE TIME MACHINE

Digital versions only 99 cents!
(print version also available)

An eccentric inventor is determined to reclaim his wayward time machine 
and save his beloved wife from her latest misadventure. 
If only they can travel safely past the black hole…

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

BLOG TOUR FEATURED TITLE: SIDE SLIP

COMMENT FOR A CHANCE TO WIN!
The author will awarding a digital copy 
of one of his novels to a random commenter

BUY NOW AT ROGUE PHOENIX PRESS!

BLURB:
Stuck in paradise and he isn’t very happy about it. 
Even the beautiful lady detective that gunned down the man trying to kill them both can’t get him to stay. 
Corporal Sam Deland wants out. 
Back to work leading his squad of state troopers and home where he can take up the life he had to put on hold. 
But Sam isn’t the only one wanting him to return. 
The woman he left behind is waiting for him and so is the Russian Mob. Sam’s past is catching up with him, and he doesn’t see it coming, yet. 
Detective Christie O’Shea, the pretty Florida cop that nursed Sam back to health won’t have the time to miss him when he’s gone. 
Murder is what she’s paid to solve,
and she has to go after a killer that has sent shock waves deep into the police community around her. 
A triple play of heart stopping and heart warming suspense, action and life
as Sam, his troopers and Christie all find they are in the middle of murders and mobsters. A story that twists and turns through the investigations and the lives of characters you will grow to know, to cheer and to fear. Sharp dialogue, real characters and enough drama, humor and mystery to keep the reader up late not ready to put it down yet. 

Another thrilling Sam Deland crime novel from the author of Sink Rate and Rope Break.

AUTHOR BIO

After writing professional documents for many years, Mike has finally devoted time to his true passion, writing fiction where the story and characters come alive in the reader’s mind. While his days were filled with authoring hundreds of detailed crime reports, arrest affidavits, search warrants and grand jury presentments, he took some of his own time and devoured books by the dozens. Reading not only was a rewarding diversion, it provided him with the added education he needed to function at a high level in his profession.

This has led to the creation of Mike’s crime/suspense/detective novels Sink Rate, Rope Break and Side Slip, the first three in the Sam Deland Crime Novel series. All are expected to be published in 2015 and 2016 by Rogue Phoenix Press. 

Mike writes with the real life experience that many years of law enforcement shaped and influenced. The stories may be fiction but are based on how things happen in the real world.  His books are honest and captivating novels written with a unique voice that will both chill and charm.

Mike is a veteran police detective. He did it all from rookie patrolman to Senior Special Agent. His life has been enriched by a wonderful marriage, parenting, work, flying, sailing and good books. Mike is a lifelong outdoorsman, an experienced tactical firearms instructor, champion sailplane pilot and the captain of his own sailboat. All of these skills have made his novels vivid, exciting and real. Now retired after a career with three law enforcement agencies, Mike enjoys winters writing in Naples, Florida and summers sailing, writing and researching the next novel at his rural Pennsylvania home.

On Twitter:  @mikefullerwrite 

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

BLOG TOUR FEATURE: THE BLACK COACH

5 out of 5 stars!
Nickie Fleming’s crisp and colorful words thrust the reader back into a time where horse drawn coaches were the mode of transportation...The Black Coach offers its readers mystery, hope, intrigue, and a quiet love story.

–Tamara White

Buy The Black Coach at: Rogue Phoenix Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble

You could win!
AUTHOR NICKIE FLEMING WILL GIVE 
AN EBOOK COPY OF ONE OF HER BOOKS 
TO A RANDOMLY DRAWN COMMENTER.
Just leave a comment to be entered.

The Devil is riding his black coach across the moors of Yorkshire and hunting virgins. Or is this so?

Strange things are happening in the village of Pickering, Yorkshire. Two girls are found murdered, and there is talk about strange going-ons at night. Caught in the middle of this turmoil is Maggie Thompson, an orphan, who needs to fend for herself. Running away from an employer who maltreated her, she nearly dies during a winter storm. She is rescued by a man who lives in a nearly abandoned house. Neil Harrington has his own secrets however. Maggie will have to trust on her feelings to know what is right or wrong. And she can’t forget there is a killer on the rampage…


Author Bio
Nickie Fleming was born and raised in the historical town of Dendermonde, Belgium, home of the legendary Horse Bayard. Nickie read English and Dutch Literature and Linguistics at the University of Ghent, where she took her master's degree in 1978. She began work as a teacher of languages to 16-18 year-olds and has done so during her long career. She has been writing since she could hold a pen in her hand, but only came to publication when she was well over 50—mainly because she was not actively seeking it. Besides writing, Nickie spends her time with the things she loves—and those she doesn't like so much: housekeeping, reading (favorites are thrillers and good romances), listening to good music, going to see shows and concerts, travelling, food and wine... Nickie is single and shares her house with her only sister, who is equally single. The two ladies get along just fine and do most things together.

Buy The Black Coach at: Rogue Phoenix Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble

Cover art: Designs by Ms. G
About the cover from the author:
"I really like the cover!"
–Nickie Fleming

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

BLOG TOUR FEATURING DRAGONS OF THE ICE!

BLOG TOUR!
FREE PRIZE:
One randomly drawn commenter will receive 
their choice of one of C.L. Kraemer's books!

Dragonlings are a
challenge at the best of
times. When a plot is
discovered to extinguish
the dragon shifters of the
world, parents-to-be
Petra & Dagmar,
and Olga & Lee
fear for the future.

An intriguing shape shifter novel! 5 Stars! Dragons of the Ice is epic in scope...
***** Reviewed by Jeffrey Ross

I found myself in a world not unlike my own, except that the actors were dragons with the magical power to appear to be people and to function in human society with plain humans none the wiser. 4 Stars!
**** Reviewed by G. Lloyd Helm

from Rogue Phoenix Press

Unexpected dragon shiftings have increased since the conference in China. More deaths being covered up inexplicably sends Lee Svensson to Japan to investigate from the Swedish Embassy. Why is it World Watch, Inc., a marketing company, is always on site when a shifter dies? Lee is charged to find out. When the husband of his wife’s best friend discovers an account he is managing, World Watch, Inc., is manipulating oil companies by buying up all available stocks, the two realize their paths are the same. Now that their wives have announced the impending births of dragonlings, it is imperative the men solve this riddle. An American dragoness shifter and former full blood warrior dragon will prove courage comes in all sizes.
ABOUT THE COVER FROM THE AUTHOR: 
“As always ... this is perfect! I love it.”
--C.L. Kraemer
A traveler for most of her life, C. L. Kraemer has settled in the Northwest with her husband and two cats. When not creating a new world or entity, she likes riding next to her husband on their Harleys.


EXCERPT FROM DRAGONS OF THE ICE
Japan

The flight to Tokyo was tedious and Lee Svensson was not a good traveler. Airplanes exacerbated his claustrophobia, and the air turbulence upset his stomach. He disembarked with the passengers heading into the terminal. It never ceased to amaze him how polite Japanese travelers were. The walkways, while crowded, found the citizens accommodating to one another and foreigners. Lee located his luggage at the baggage retrieval. A close by kiosk offered instructions for the second leg of his journey. He purchased a rail ticket to Sapporo and flagged a vacant taxi willing to take him to the station. After settling in his window seat, Lee opted to close his eyes and allow the gentle movement of the bullet train lull him to sleep. There were two changes to make before he reached his destination far to the north of Tokyo in the Hokkaido prefecture.
This was his first trip away from Olga since they'd wed before the spring conference. If there hadn't been so much evidence against the target, he would've passed off this assignment to another. The nature of the investigation, however, required his presence at the offices in Sapporo.
"Sir? Excuse me, sir. We're at your stop."
The uniformed train attendant woke him, opting to gently rouse the stranger.
"Domo arigato."
She smiled, a shy affair showing a small dimple in her right cheek.
"You're welcome, sir."
Lee rose from the seat and stretched his muscles. He was facing one more transfer then eight hours of sleep. His meeting wasn't for two more days, but he felt the need to be rested. He'd be glad when he could stop moving and call Olga. She'd been acting very odd before he left yesterday. Was it just yesterday? He shook his head realizing his sense of timing had flown out the window after several time zone changes.
The second transfer was quickly accomplished as Lee settled his briefcase next to him. Safely ensconced in his seat on the final leg of his journey, his eyelids began to drift toward his cheeks.
The ring of his cell phone startled him awake.
"Hello? Olga! Good heavens, what time is it there?"
He listened to the voice of his lifemate, feeling tightness in his shoulders disappear. His lips slid into a smile and he stretched his legs before him.
"I know, my love, but just put up with her while I'm gone. She is, after all, the one who promoted you to the council and encouraged them to use your work."
The countryside was giving way to homes. Lee straightened and started checking around his seat for anything he may have left.
"What? Olga? What did you just say?"
The sound must've been distorted by such a long distance.
"Olga? Let me call you back. We're at the final station, and I need to get to my hotel room. I'll be able to hear you better from a landline. Okay?"
He sensed she wasn't thrilled but clicked off his phone knowing she would wait for his call. Lee made his way to the hotel and his room.
Showering away two days of travel, he reveled in the hot water sluicing down his body chasing away the aches and pains of sitting for so long. Over-sized, terrycloth towels specifically set out for him as per his reservation request, warmed and relaxed the remaining weariness from his bones. The urgency to sleep was exerting power over his need to speak to his wife. He shook off the need to sleep. He'd better call Olga or she'd worry unnecessarily.
Once he'd gone through the hotel's phone exchange, he waited on the bed as the phone rang at the other end.
"Hello?"
Finally. "Hi, sweetheart. I couldn't quite hear everything you were saying while I was on the train. Now, what did you want me to know?"
He sat listening to his wife relay the news to him. This changes everything.

from Rogue Phoenix Press

Saturday, January 21, 2017

FEATURED TITLE: WORLDS RECLAIMED

Released January 8, 2017
from Rogue Phoenix Press

Clare and her group of vampires, fae and werewolves want to live on Earth. To do that, they must heal the worlds they have been visiting through the portals. Vesi, is an albino vampire and Heln, is a white werewolf. Neither has been accepted by their own people. This unlikely couple tries to fight their growing attraction to each other while helping to save two worlds. On one world, a mist is closing in so nothing will survive. On the other, the High Priestess Sari is at war. Her power is failing and she wants to use Vesi’s blood so she can live forever. Can Heln save his love and help his friends save both worlds. Will their group ever get to Earth?
FROM THE AUTHOR: 
“I love what you have done…”
--Maggie Mundy