Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Rise of the Realms - REBORN by D. Fischer - Free Excerpt

Welcome readers to a special blog post today!  I’m featuring author D. Fischer, a multi-genre paranormal fantasy author, with a premiere excerpt from the first book in her upcoming epic and high fantasy series, Rise of the Realms – REBORN. Read on!
Fischer’s previous works include Night of Terror, Prurient’s Bluff, the Cloven Pack series (shape-shifter wolf series), and some scary sexy paranormal short stories. Paranormal, dark and disturbing, suspense, and even erotica, are the themes in her novels. In Reborn the author takes on witches, angels and vampires in a new, intense fantasy series. Let’s get to the blurb and excerpt!
“This isn’t a place for beating hearts. This is death, and death is endless.” 
Five people. Five crossing fates. One person’s actions change their lives forever. 
Making a deal with the Fee has its price. In Katriane Dupont’s case, it comes with scales and an unlimited amount of power. The consequences of her actions unfold with crippling events, shifting the Realms. Shades cross the Death Realm, and an Angel, determined for answers, clips her wings. 
Can Kat control what’s within her? Or will it consume her?
“It’s nature, to fight to live, even until your very last breath.”

Enjoy this thrilling new EXCERPT
Perched on the edge of the brick building, I watch my charge, Katriane Dupont, walk into her shop. My drenched, long curls whip about my face with the force of the wind rolling up the side of the brick below me. My dress clings to my skin and my white, feathered wings rustle against my back in agitation, cascading droplets of rain. Her footsteps are light but careful, her grace becoming legendary amongst the Guardian Realm.
A witch expelled from her coven is a vulnerable one, and for a reason I can’t fathom, the creatures of the dead flock to her like Earth Realm bugs to a light.
It’s late, the stars should twinkle in the night sky, but the roaring storm consumes them with its thunderous veracity. This is a wet fall the Earth Realm is having, a sure sign that its winter will be a strong and vicious one.
The bell chimes as she opens the glass door to her shop, echoing against the buildings of the empty street. Soon she disappears from my view, confined to the safety of her home. I watch as the lights flick on in the second story of the building, and my heart eases. She’s safe. My job is half-way done, but yet, the questions forming in my head have yet to be answered.
My eyes return to the danger threatening my charge’s safety. In the alley, just beside her shop, two pairs of red eyes lurk like roaches, concealed by the dark shadows as they hunch close to the ground. They wait for the moment of visible weakness to strike my unsuspecting Katriane, but unfortunately for them, they’ll never have the chance.
Slowly, I stand from my perched position and expand my wings before flexing the muscles in my back, beating them against the air. The sound is drowned by the thunder, and my body lifts into the night. Taking the higher route as to not be seen, I fly the short distance to Katriane’s building and perch once more. As a hundreds of years old angel, my movements are fluid and quiet with practiced ease. The enemies on the ground, none-the-wiser, have little knowledge I watch them like a hawk stalking its next feast. Over my dead, immortal body will any vampire lay a claw or fang on my charge.
They begin speaking to each other, but all I hear is the slight hissing at the end of each word, their lips attempting to make coherent sounds around their permanently elongated fangs. I curse Kheelan for the day he created these monstrosities. They’re assassins, their only purpose to do Kheelan’s bidding. They’re a plague to the world, a disgrace to the realms, and that of the Fee who had created them so long ago. There was a time that these creatures of the dead didn’t exist and each realm was all the better for it.
Thick, oiling revulsion rolls in the pit of my stomach. Only a sick mind could create such a monster, such a contradiction to life itself, and then unleash them to this innocent realm. My fingers grip the edge of the wall between my feet, my knuckles straining against my skin as I fight my inner hatred.
Silently, they make their way to the edge of the alley. No longer worried about their concealment, they walk through the middle instead of shimming, crouched, along the wall. I sigh at their ignorance and spread my wings once more, leaping from the edge and dropping to the ground in a dive.  
It’s a short fall, but as my feet touch the wet cement with a grace few creatures possess, the vampires’ sensitive hearing picks up the extra step as I take it. The rain puddled against the cement caresses the bottom of my feet and the fresh scent of wet dirt tickles in the inside of my nose.
They whip their heads around, their red eyes deep, like pools of blood puddled on the floor. I imagine those eyes themselves would strike fear into any victim.
Veins black as the night sky are visible through their pale skin and fangs dip past their bottom lip, poking the skin just above their chins. The smell of rotting, dead flesh wrinkles my nose and my stomach rolls once more.
“Evening boys,” I greet with much more kindness than they deserve. I tilt my head. “Care to share your plans for this fine night?”
They step from the shadows and I get a better view of their profile. One has red hair and a pinched nose, the other has black hair, matching the veins inside his skin. Both tall and broad in size, I imagine whoever sent them had chosen them on purpose.
The red-haired vampire hisses at me, red-tinged spittle flying from his mouth. The rain flattening his hair to his forehead causes him to look more like a vulnerable living being, but he’s not. No vampire is a living being and each should be judged accordingly for their crimes—I’d be honored to deliver the verdict.
Quicker than the rain that pounds the ground and the lightning that strikes the land, they race toward me. But I’m prepared. I bend my knees, ducking and spreading my wings. As I spin on the balls of my bare feet, my wings hit the vampires against their torsos, sending them crashing into the brick wall. Before they can fall to the ground, I rush forward, reach out my hands, and capture their necks. Their skin feels slick—like the carcass of a plucked chicken—but not from the downpour. The feel of the skin against mine threatens the hold of my fingers, their grips, and the contents within my stomach.
Pinned to the man-made rock, their fingers claw hands but it’s useless—I don’t feel it. Angels are built to be indestructible to any enemy of the night—we have far more strength than any vampire.
“Do you think the Death Realm has a place for the twice dead?” I whisper to them, my face relaxed as I easily hold them prisoner. They hiss and guttural growls pass chomping teeth. I blink, unaffected, and twist my hands to the side. The snap of their spine rings true, announcing my easy victory. Within another blink, they’re piles of dust pooled against the concrete. I watch as rain flows along the grooves, mixing with their ashes and carrying them away to the street drain just beyond.
“I suppose they’ll find out,” I mumble to myself.
Glancing down the alleyway, both left and right, I make sure that’s the last of them before soaring back into the sky, the rain beating against my skin from my gathering speed. 
******************************
Grab your pre-order now REBORN - Rise of the Realms $0.99 (release Feb 9/2018)!
To learn more about D. Fischer and her books check out these links:

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Damned by Alexandrea Weis with Lucas Astor

Damned
By:  Alexandrea Weis, Lucas Astor
Publish Date:  October 3, 2017
Published By:  Vesuvian Books
Genre: Contemporary, Supernatural, Adult, Occult, Fantasy
Pages:  242 Kindle Edition
Source:  Xpresso Book Tours

Over a hundred years after the death of Magnus Blackwell, Altmover Manor sits abandoned.

Lexie Arden and her fiancé, Will Bennet, are determined to rescue the neglected Mount Desert Island landmark. They want to make Altmover Manor their home. But Magnus has other plans.

A spirit bound to his former residence, Magnus finds himself inexplicably drawn to the young woman. She has a supernatural gift; a gift Magnus wants to exploit.

As Lexie and Will settle in, secrets from Magnus’s past begin to surface. Compelled to learn all she can about the former owner, Lexie becomes immersed in a world of voodoo, curses, and the whereabouts of a mysterious dragon cane.

Magnus’ crimes won’t be so easily forgotten, and what Lexie unearths is going to change the future … for everyone.
*********************************
Welcome to my Halloween post for 2017! I’m excited to host a book review for Damned, via Xpresso Book Tours, to highlight interesting reads for your fright night.

I was so interested in Damned as I love the premise of Lexie and Will moving into their bargain-basement price new home, the old Blackwell manor, which has been sitting empty for decades, perched on the edge of a wild cliff side in Maine; just the perfect setting for spooky story happenings.

Soon we discover that at least one real ‘live’ ghost, that of Magnus Blackwell, inhabits their new home and Lexie realizes her inherent gift of sensing, then seeing and hearing the dead starts growing, fast. Something that fiancé Will isn’t that comfortable with.

Her ghost, Magnus Blackwell, is likened to Dorian Gray (The Picture of Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde), which gives us some idea about how freely Magnus committed evils while living, with no thought about repercussions or his deeds casting a shadow over his being. So not exactly a benign type of ghost. But then maybe he’s not so bad anymore since making the transition, or maybe it’s Lexie.

Damned reads a bit like a mystery and I really liked Lexie’s persistence in digging up secrets of the Blackwells, rooting through old attic boxes and paintings, and then determinedly taking the trail down south as disaster falls on her and Will. The storyline is very beguiling and I didn’t want to stop reading, especially when Lexie heads down to New Orleans with ghost in tow to hunt for the stolen, powerful voodoo baton juju.

Magnus turns out to have some surprising talents as he and Lexie research into the very origins of voodoo there. There’s great back history on this strange, fascinating and somewhat terrifying belief system, and Lexie can’t help getting drawn in deeper and deeper. Completely unexpected ending!

If you’re looking for a great Halloween read, or an occult-themed book any time of the year, Damned will keep you captivated. 4.6 stars!
Some explicit sexual content. 

 About the Authors: 
Alexandrea Weis is an advanced practice registered nurse who was born and raised in New Orleans. Having been brought up in the motion picture industry, she learned to tell stories from a different perspective and began writing at the age of eight. Infusing the rich tapestry of her hometown into her award-winning novels, she believes that creating vivid characters makes a story memorable. A permitted/certified wildlife rehabber with the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries, Weis rescues orphaned and injured wildlife. She lives with her husband and pets in New Orleans. 

Lucas Astor is from New York, has resided in Central America and the Middle East, and traveled through Europe. He lives a very private, virtually reclusive lifestyle, preferring to spend time with a close-knit group of friends than be in the spotlight.  He is an author and poet with a penchant for telling stories that delve into the dark side of the human psyche. He likes to explore the evil that exists, not just in the world, but right next door behind a smiling face.
Grab your copy at Amazon!


Monday, 9 October 2017

A Memory of Fire by R.L. Stedman

A Memory of Fire
Book 3 of 3, SoulNecklace Stories
By:  R.L. Stedman
Publish Date:  October 1, 2017
Published By:  Waverley Productions
Genre:  Fantasy, Paranormal
Pages:  262 Kindle
Source:  Xpresso Book Tours

About my wrist is a tattoo of roses, strung like beads on a bracelet of thorns. I have a past, if only I could remember — but I cannot remember.

Held captive in a strange city, Dana dreams of fire and flight. There is something she must find, but she does not know what it is, or why it is important. If only her dreams would let her rest.

Half a world away, Will studies a new, exciting discipline. But while enchantress N'tombe is impressed by his newfound skills, inside he feels only desperation. A terrible moment is approaching. Soon, Dana must face her final ordeal.

Is his new power enough to save her? And is he prepared for what might happen next?

In this thrilling conclusion to the award-winning SoulNecklace Stories, Will and Dana must make a heart-breaking choice. A choice that will change their world forever.
*********************************
First of all, author, R.L. Stedman, has a really clear easy-flow writing style that moves the reader flying along at speed through crisp, short descriptions that give you the essence of the dreamscapes, magic and adventure that are book 3 in the SoulNecklace Stories. Even so, it's better to read books 1 and 2 to more fully understand the background to the action taking place in this final instalment as Will and Dana are separated at the start of this and struggling both to fight the evil Kamaye and find each other again across vast distances.

Kamaye, the evil immortals, are described just a little bit like making me think of HP death eaters, and just as horrible, but Will and Dana have TeSin, N’Tombe and dream magic on their side.

Our male MC, Will, is a totally good guy. He even wants to help survivors of an earthquake though he has bigger problems of his own on tap.  He’s a natural learner/warrior, watching N’tombe and copying her. Dana plays an equally strong role and has special qualities too, including wings (though I didn’t get a really clear idea of what exact sort of wings they are. Like to know what exact sort of wings they are.) I love the stick-to-it female characters in the books I’ve been reading and Dana comes through here with grit. Secondary character development and subplot in TeSin and Mai-Long, and with N’Tombe are really well done and don’t take away from the main story line at all but add to it nicely.

Readers will find interesting and different magics in this novel, several that I’ve never heard of before. The soul necklace theme is very unique. I also really liked the idea of the glass globe and would have liked to have seen even more done with this curious object.

This quote really reflects the feeling of the novel/writing - “Your eyes are full of sky.”  2506/3946.

My criticisms would be of the use of a black out kind of effect at the end of many scenes, though this is really tied into the dream element of the story (but starting to feel a little repetitive). Also, I found that Dana and Will being separated for really most of this last book a bit strange. The reason seems to be to allow for other aspects of the story to develop but I feel in the final part of a trilogy this plot approach a little disconnecting.
Overall, A Memory of Fire is a great clean YA adventure fantasy read that will have you thinking of far off places and magical adventures. I recommend this easy-fast read, charmingly written story for all ages who love YA paranormal/fantasy stories.  4.3 Stars!
AUTHOR BIO:
Award-winning author Rachel Stedman lives in Dunedin, New Zealand with her husband and two children. Her first novel, A Necklace of Souls, won Best First Novel at the New Zealand Post Book Awards 2014. In 2012 Rachel was the winner of the Tessa Duder Award and was shortlisted for the Tom Fitzgibbon Award.