Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Wild at Heart

Elle James's writing group Diamond State Romance Authors has produced two volumes of short stories that would make great Christmas gifts.
Titled WILD AT HEART the books are an attempt to raise money for Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge a large cat rescue (Tigers, Lions, Puma) here in North West Arkansas.

Meet Loretta the model for Volume II. She lives at the refuge, along with Missy the model for Volume I.


The refuge is currently involved in their largest rescue yet of over 30 big cats. And they need money to help these cats!

Profits from the sales of WILD AT HEART  volumes go to the TURPENTINE CREEK WILDLIFE REFUGE. Help the big cats by clicking on the book covers and buying your own copies for a gift that gives in more than one way.


....escape with elle
THUNDER HORSE REDEMPTION - Harlequin Intrigue - Oct 2012
THE WITCH'S INITIATION - Harlequin Nocturne - Nov 2012
DEMON'S EMBRACE - Harlequin Nocturne Cravings - Dec 2012
THE WITCH'S SEDUCTION - Harlequin Nocturne - Nov 2013

Monday, October 01, 2012

A Killer’s Field by Susan Elizabeth Alvis

I’m stopping by today to share an excerpt from A Killer’s Field, a new fictional novella motivated by the senseless I-45 Texas killings, most of which have remained unsolved.

A few years ago, I became aware of the overwhelming number of unsolved crimes along the I-45 corridor located south of Houston. In an area known as the Texas killing fields, this property has become a dumping ground for some of the country’s most horrific crimes.

Since the early 70s, bodies have been abandoned in these Texas swamps. Many young lives ended too soon and families were devastated as bodies were recovered but never truly laid to rest. Killers seemingly committed the perfect crimes and thanks to the mysteries surrounding so many of the murders, questions were forever left unanswered.

A Killer’s Field is a short young adult Halloween story available in e-format. Published by Devine Destinies, the novella is fictional but the inspiration behind the story was developed over time by researching some of the true, and quite brutal, unsolved Texas killings.

A Killer’s Field isn’t a true story. However, when I wrote the novella, I tried to write a short story that would appeal to young people and in some small way let the victims’ families know their loved one hasn’t been forgotten. At the same time, this short story includes a warning for all readers with an    underlying message in regards to social networks, a tool often used when criminals make their first connection with their future victims.

I’d like to invite your readers to check out A Killer’s Field, on sale now at Devine Destinies. Readers, please leave your comments about the cover, short story, or any aspect of A Killer’s Field. I’ll stop by again today and choose one random winner for one free e-gift. If you’re posting a comment, please include an email address or check back to see how you can claim your prize.

Thank you for sharing your blog with me, Janice. :)

A Killer’s Field by Susan Elizabeth Alvis

“A deadly event turns participants into victims as a Texas killing field becomes ground zero for a Halloween hunt….” A Killer’s Field, Susan Smith Alvis

Kristen McMurray is flabbergasted when her boyfriend decides to take her to the Texas Killing Fields for Halloween.  She’s not at all impressed with his plans for a romantic evening, let alone the idea of frolicking on the very grounds known to harbor the deadliest of secrets.
Picturing a moonlit sky high above them and a murderer lurking in the shadows, Kristen is convinced her boyfriend has either lost his mind or worse. Perhaps he’s become a quiet lunatic waiting to emerge.

Reluctantly, Kristen agrees to spend Halloween in the fields. Unbeknownst to her, they enter the heart of a huge Halloween hunt, an organized event and obvious trap used to entice unsuspecting victims to the very place where dozens of bodies have been previously dumped.
One brush with death leads to another, but Kristen keeps her wits about her as her boyfriend turns their Halloween night into an evening she’ll never forget. While the fields live up to their harrowing name, Kristen faces the horrors of the past. Somewhere along the way, she discovers an inner strength and a will to survive, realizing determination and the desire to live are the only elements ensuring she’ll leave the fields alive!
Excerpt for A Killer’s Field by Susan Smith Alvis
I’m about as flabbergasted as my Dobermans were when I went outside to feed them prime rib and a vulture swept down and stole the raw meat straight from the pan. The event occurred last week but I can still picture their wide eyes as they stretched their necks upward and barked at the heavens. They were in terrible shock, poor things. After the clever bird escaped, all they could do was stand there and pant, foam forming in the corners of their mouths.

Okay, so I’m not panting or wiping drool from my chin. I am, however, stunned.

“Well, what do you think?” Dennison asks, backing away from his pickup. “Say yes, Kristen. It’ll be a lifetime experience. One you’ll remember forever.”

“What makes you think we’ll live to later share our experiences?”

“You’re so dramatic,” he says, returning to work on his truck. “Most women would see this trip for what it is—an overnight getaway.”

“Visiting the Texas Killing Fields, on Halloween no less, is not my idea of a romantic weekend.” I stare at his back. “Where will we stay?”

“I’ll pack a tent and a sleeping bag.”

Wonderful. For a minute, I consider his idea of snuggling inside confined spaces. That is, until a body bag comes to mind. After all, those fields symbolize decades of horror.
Copyright © 2012

A Killer’s Field by Susan Elizabeth Alvis is available at Devine Destinies. Cover art for A Killer’s Field was created by Carmen Waters.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

On Ice J.D. Faver

On IceOn Ice by J.D. Faver
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I just finished On Ice by J.D. Faver, about a woman, Rene, who runs from her abusive husband with her two children up to a tiny town in Alaska called Sad Horse.

Rene is hired as a teacher by a tall, bearded, Grizzly Adams type man who’s the love interest. The people there are warm and welcoming. Each one is a true character, which reminded me of Northern Exposure.

As Rene struggles to assist her children in adapting to this sleepy town, she can't help looking over her shoulder for her abuser. At the same time, the town's people seem to fold her into their arms.

Sad Horse seems to be made for Rene. This is where she is needed and accepted. She can't help comparing this life that she is making for herself with the isolated home her husband forced on her.

Unknown to Rene, her sister and her family are being harassed by her abusive husband, Mark. The sister can’t step a toe outside without coming face to face with the smirking Mark.

J.D. Faver does a great job of ramping up the tension. The husband eventually catches up to her, and the climax had my heart pounding.

The only negative about this book was the editing: Missing commas, dropped words, some telly phrases and slight POV shifts.

Even though the editing bothered me a bit, it still didn't take away from this engaging story and I found myself really rooting for the heroine.

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Andre Norton's Forerunner

ForerunnerForerunner by Andre Norton

I just finished Forerunner last night and feel a little disappointed. I've read Andre Norton since I was in HS and I'm found of her work. I've always loved her strong female lead characters.

Forerunner is written from the POV of the main Character Simsa, who is raised among the Burrowers (simple people who live underground and dig for treasure in old part of the city).

Simsa's black skin and white hair marks her as different. With little to no education, and raised by an old woman who never told her anything about her history, Simsa has to make it on her own after the old woman dies.

When the Starmen come, Simsa sees an opportunity she's been waiting for.

After she sells some old broken trinkets to the Starman Thom, Simsa finds herself in trouble with a local crime boss. She then sets out on an adventure with Thom as he goes in search of a long lost city and his lost brother.

In the end, Simsa finds out who she is and discovers more power than she's ever dreamed of (which reads like God in the machine).

I found the dialogue stilted and the ending abrupt. After a long rambling speech by Simsa, it's as if Norton said that's it, and the book just ends with no real conclusion to the story.

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