Huzzizzle of the Realm - April 2016 UR News #amreading

Check out these awesome reads from the Untethered Realms authors!

Coming Out on 30 April

First, do no harm.” Blake Ryan swore that oath to become a doctor. Ironic, given that he spent most of his thousand year life sucking souls out of other immortals.

Things are different now. Using regular shots of morphine to keep his inner monster at bay, Ryan has led a quiet life since the Second World War. His thrills now come from saving lives, not taking them.

Until a plane crash brings Aleria into his hospital. Her life is vibrant. Crack to predators like him. She’s the exact sort of person they would hunt, and thanks to a severe case of amnesia, she’s all but defenseless.

Leaving Aleria vulnerable isn’t an option, but protecting her means unleashing his own inner monster. Which is a problem, because his inner monster wants her dead most of all.

Pre-order Now At:

AmazonUS | Amazon Universal | Apple | Barnes& Noble | Kobo | Goodreads

* * * * *

Coming April 28th!

 Big Burning (Sasquatch Susies #3)

Life for Susie Russell couldn’t be better. Her lingerie business won international fame and her sister had found irrefutable proof of Bigfoot’s existence. So confident about the authenticity of their evidence, Susie even agrees to let a skeptic join their group on a research exhibition near Mt. Hood. Her world comes crashing down when the man who broke her heart turns around to shake her hand. Brach Stevens might be smart and gorgeous, but Susie refuses to let him so easily charm his way back into her life. Their trek into the woods turns deadly when they’re trapped by a forest fire. Will they be able to escape the hungry flames or will Susie perish without letting Brach know she has always loved him?

Pre-order the book:
Amazon * B&N * Kobo * Google Play * Goodreads

Witch of the Cards is on SALE for only 99 cents 
& FREE on Kindle Unlimited

Fiera discovers she’s a sea witch, but someone is out to stop her blossoming powers forever. Secrets, lies, even murder, lace this sizzling historical fantasy.
Stine weaves a spell with magic, tarot cards & exquisitely terrifying underwater scenes.”

Get it exclusively at Amazon US & Amazon CA 


Don't Forget To Breathe 
On SALE for 99 cents Today!!!!

  • "Bone chilling horror and heart pounding romance come together to make an enthralling read. Constantine knows how to weave a riveting and intriguing plot.  It's a YA novel and Constantine understands her audience. In short, it has all the elements reader's expect from the best in genre and it's sure to keep the pages turning at a frantic pace. It is strongly recommended!" ~ Book Viral Review
  • "Don't Forget to Breathe encompasses so much: heartbreak, mean girls, the bad boy, the good boy, murder, mystery, and ghosts. Seriously what more could you ask for???" ~ MYBLISSFULBOOKS review

  • AMAZON: One Click: smarturl.it/dontbreathe
BEACON is part of an awesome Amazon giveaway!
Get in for you chance to when your copy.

Tsunamis reduced the USA into a shell of itself, called The Fold. Surviving humans and vampires joined forces to form The Colony, where registered citizens do as they're told. 

They donate blood quarterly and dream of being chosen as Attendees for the Jubilee celebrations, that is, everyone except Macie Breen. With high school graduation near, she’s anxious to ditch the rules in hopes of starting a new life with Thane, an unregistered and also her best friend. 

Her hopes fizzle when Macie is selected as an Attendee, forever registered. Any future with Thane…impossible. Being chosen comes with another unexpected price. 

Truths about The Colony blaze into ashes and lies when she discovers the vampires haven't kept their part of the bargain. Worst still, Macie’s life unravels as her stint in the city of Bliss forces her to face daunting truths about who, and what, she really is

"Beacon is filled with action. There's never a boring moment in this book! So many elements are streamlined into this story and work so well with the world that the author has created. The world building is absolutely awe-inspiring. I enjoyed Macie so much. She was a great character that I loved reading about." ~ 5 * Amazon review

Go here for your chance to enter and win: Giveaway



A Report fromTwo Book Conventions

L to R: Colleen Houck, me, Sarah Schmitt, Ginger Scott at RT
I recently attended two book conventions and wanted to give my take on them, since fellow authors are often curious. The first one, Roanoke Author Invasion (or RAI) was a smallish convention in Roanoke, Virginia. The one I just returned from in Las Vegas was a HUGE one, called RT Booklovers (or simply RT).

RAI was mainly composed of indie authors, though some authors had small/large publishers behind them. There were no panels, and everything centered around a Saturday book fair and after-party. Because the organizer, Liz Long managed to get a front page article in the Roanoke Times, and then nail a TV spot, lots of locals showed up, which was great! I kept the price of my books reasonable and gave out swag with each purchase. When I ran out of the most popular book (Witch of the Cards) I took pre-paid orders and mailed the books out as soon as I returned. I got newsletter signups with the promise of a free story anthology (our Mayhem in the Air one, which I gift via Amazon so we make sales). Long story short, everyone wants a perk with a purchase. The after-party was a great way to blow off steam, and they even had a live DJ. Oh, and I got to meet Cherie Reich, one of our Untethered Realms peeps, who lives in Roanoke! My assessment: RAI was worth it because of the great local advertising and because it was short with a big bang.
At RAI (I am on the right-ish side, in back)
RT, in contrast, is HUGE, and lasts for days (7). Many of the authors are famous (or infamous. LOL) and have big publishers. This can be intimidating, but there's also a healthy mix of hybrid authors (me) and indie authors, and the intermingling is cool. RT's schedule packs in so many panels, promo events, parties, talks, publisher presentations, and free pitch opps to agents and publishers it made my head spin. Not to mention the 3 1/2 hour Giant Book Fair! This year I chose to be in what's called YA Alley.  There is also an NA and a general section. I weaseled onto a YA panel, which was a lucky fluke, as these fill up fast. In fact, one must sign up for this book con THE DAY IT GOES LIVE or take the risk of missing out.

My smartest move at this book fair was to offer a deal that if readers bought two books they got a third for free. I made a bunch of sales this way, because, again, people always want specials. Many took bookmarks, saying they only read on their digital devices, so going forward, I want to figure out a unique perk for these readers. I ended up selling well, but bringing more books than I sold, so I gave extras away at the Teen Day Party, where I got to meet and greet tons of teen readers and their parents, who also read YA! This con was super-tiring, so I would caution authors not to try to go to all of the events, but pick and choose and make sure to take rests in between. It makes sense to stay IN the con hotel at RT for this reason alone. I'm not a gambler, but I loved the slot machine art and the live performances. Hey, we even saw Britany Spears at Planet Hollywood. I'm no fan, but OMG, she put on a real spectacle with great dancers and incredible sets. Over at my blog, Idea City, I did a photo journal of the events, if you want to see more photos, click here. But first, scroll down to answer a question!
Dragon slot game

Caesar's Palace's faux Greek goddess

In June I'll be going to Utopia in Nashville, and I'm sure I will learn even more there. Have you attended a book con? Any tips to share?


Bring on the Big Screen

It's an author's dream come true to have their novel optioned for the big screen, small screen, well, any sized screen where they can see their words brought to life.

It can also be a nightmare to see the printed words - words slaved over, fought for and won after battles with writer's block or missing muses - simply disappear because they lack importance to translate into the final moving picture product. OR, see that the finished product is so incomplete in what should have been included from the book that it resembles some cobbled together beautiful failure.


there are some novels that converted to the big screen in such a fantastic way - despite what had to be cut - that left viewers in awe and many readers satisfied with the end result. One example is the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Image credit
As a fan of this trilogy, it was a joy to watch each movie release and yep, me and the ex-hubby purchased the extended versions each year during the time we were together (I lost the extended versions in the divorce but it's okay lol!)

This was a trilogy with such a huge cast of characters, depth of history, and mountains of backstory that it was seemingly impossible to imagine anyone or any people crafting proper scripts, gathering just the right actors and actresses, and a director with a big enough vision to pull this off, But it happened. You can check out various interviews of the cast here because, well, it's just awesome.
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Some may disagree on how well, or not well, LOTR converted to the big screen. I would love to read your thoughts in the comments. Plus, are there other movies you feel converted to the big or small screen in glorious fashion? Perhaps there is a beloved novel that didn't translate so well and you'd like to share about that. That's what the comments are for so please share :-)


Review of Legacy Code by Autumn Kalquist

I discovered Legacy Code, Book One of the Fractured Era Series, via Freebooksy in July of last year. One look at the breathtaking cover, a quick read of the blurb, and I was hooked.


Three hundred years ago, the Earth died, and the last humans fled. Beaten. Broken in more ways than one. Their descendants carry the Legacy Code—mangled genes that force them to abort half their unborn children.

When Era and Dritan Corinth get placements on the safest ship in the fleet and win a chance to have a child, they feel lucky. Until the day Era's supposed to find out if her baby has the Defect, and the ship suffers a hull breach.

An investigation uncovers new threats. Dangerous secrets. Lies. Treason.

Era begins to question everything she’s been taught about the fleet, their search for a new Earth, and the Defect. But the answers she seeks were never meant to be found...

Legacy Code is a suspenseful, dark post-apocalyptic read that has earned five star reviews from fans of books like Hunger Games, Divergent, and Red Rising, and has been compared favorably to Wool, 1984, and the new Battlestar Galactica.

Ellie's Review:

It's all to easy to download countless free books, only to leave them languishing for years in digital oblivion, or to read them and wish you'd chosen another. Not true with Legacy Code. I'd hoped after reading the blurb I would not be disappointed. I need not have worried - I was hooked from the opening scene until the last sentence.

Legacy Code was a breathtaking introduction into the world of 17-year old Era and the young man she's paired with, Dritan. Their world is a fleet of aging spaceships searching for a new planet to call home, set 300 years into the future. What remains of humanity is plagued by a gene defect, and all unborn babies with the mutation must be aborted. Those who do not comply, or challenge the myriad of rules, are dealt with quickly and harshly. So when pregnant Era begins to question the rules, you know conflict and heartbreak are not far behind. 

Kalquist's writing is assured, her characterization and world-building utterly convincing. It's not hard to read this book and understand why it's become an indie bestseller.

This is a book that deals with some hard questions concerning morality, life, and what it means to be human. It will keep you guessing until the last page, wrench your heart out on more than one occasion, and have you downloading its follow up Parragon before your eBook battery runs out. By the end of July I'd read books one and two, the prequel, and two short stories set in the Fractured Era universe. I can't wait for the next in the series.


An A to Z of Funny Things About the Paranormal

(Is that a ghost in the old shack or a smudge on the lens?)

April is a busy month in the blogging community with the A to Z Challenge. I love participating in the challenge, but too many real life events are happening in the next few weeks that will steal my time online away. I'll be cheering the participants on, though.

In celebration of the challenge, here's my A to Z list of funny things about the paranormal. I hope you enjoy and maybe find something new to fascinate you!

A - Amazons. Legendary warrior women. One myth says they died out because they interbred with centaurs. Maybe that's why they didn't want human men!

B - Bogeyman. He lurks in children's closets and kidnaps them at night. It could be that's because he's a demented genie and is acting on disgruntled parents' wishes. 

C - Chupacabra. Weird government experiment or coyotes with mange? I don't know, but the chupacabra reports in Russia say it likes to arrange its victims aesthetically. 

D - Djinn. These aren't the genies which are Jinn. The Djinn hate all living creatures and the gods. They want to combine into one powerful Djinn and cleanse the universe of everything else. What they need is a bunch of robots to form one giant robot! 

E - Elves. One of the most popular supernatural beings. But are they friendly or evil? While you're trying to figure that out, watch out for the invisible ones who cause the disease "elfshot." It was once a real medical condition when invisible elves shot people with invisible arrows. 

F - Father Time. A bearded old man who hands over the hourglass to a baby when the calendar changes to a new year. Some believe Father Time and the New Year Baby are one and the same, constant cycle of beginnings and endings. Both in diapers. 

G - Ghosts. Are they imprints left in this world from humans or beings from another dimension? Being haunted has long been a fear of humans, and there are accounts going back 2,000 years of young men playing practical jokes by faking hauntings. 

H - Hellhounds. These fearsome canines guard the world of the dead. There are several tales about headless hellhounds which I think would freak me out more than the ones with sharp teeth! 

I - Imps. Be it a tiny goblin or a lesser demon, these little critters like to pull pranks. All they want is human attention, but their wild nature prevents them from being good companions. Maybe if they stayed off the wings of airplanes, I'd be less afraid of them. 

J - Jackalope. It's not unusual to see myths about animal hybrids. But this one might not be totally fake. The Aztecs worshiped a creature like it, and it's no surprise it had to do with fertility. 

K - Krampus. Originally the Krampus combated white witches at the winter solstice, but then he became the Anti-Santa. He kidnaps naughty children and sucks the evil from them. Maybe he's related to the chupacabra? 

L - Leprechaun. If you capture one of these fairies, they will grant you three wishes. But not all of those wishes are possible. They can only imbue you with good luck to obtain whatever you want, so you still must do the work. Of course, that could mean simply buying a lottery ticket!

M - Mummies. Not zombies. They are born of a curse and have the intelligence they had in life. Also, mummies can gain beauty and immortality by eating human flesh. So not zombies because they are much worse! 

N - Naiads. Beautiful water nymphs. Children coming of age were washed in their waters, but watch out if you're a handsome man. These nymphs are jealous and greedy! And don't realize humans can't breathe water. 

O - Ogre. A giant monster that eats children. But not their feet. They do have some taste, after all! 

P - Pegasus. This divine winged stallion has quite the heroic mythology. He also has a very intimate relationship with the Muses. 

Q - Quetzalcoatl. Say that five times fast! He is the feathered serpent Mesoamerican god of wind and learning. Some legends say he was the only god who was against human sacrifice. Could be why there are several stories about other deities trying to kill him! 

R - Roc. This legendary bird has origins in myths around the world. In one, it shakes the Tree of Useful Things causing the fruit to fall, and that's why humans have useful things. If that tree existed today, you can imagine what "fruit" might grow on it and that is why the Roc only shook it once. 

S - The Stool. And yes, I mean poop! Several different droppings will come together to form one big sentient blob. Don't breathe in. The noxious fumes could kill you. 

T - Trolls. These creatures live isolated in mountains and caves. Many people in northern Europe still believe in trolls and have protected lands for them to live on. So if you're traveling there, always bring a goat. 

U - Unicorns. These magical horses with a single horn are not seen in Greek mythology because the Greeks believed them to be real. Though they described it as a wild donkey which liked to skewer people from behind with their horn! 

V - Vampires. There are so many tales about these bloodsuckers. Once upon a time, they were grotesque and fearsome, but now they are sexy and sparkling. Vampires used to cause mass hysteria through fear, and now they do it with their hot bodies. 

W - Werewolves. Oh look! Another creature that was once feared and is now the hero in several paranormal romances. And yet, women generally still don't like hairy men.

X - Xing Tian. A headless Chinese deity whose nipples are eyes and his belly button a mouth. Yet even without a head, he continues to fight battles. The image in my mind is like some weird Sid and Marty Croft character. Frightening. 

Y - Yeti. The Abominable Snowman. He was once worshiped as a Glacier Being, the god of the hunt. Nowadays, instead of hunting, he's being hunted by eager people with poor photography skills. 

Z - Zombies. Reanimated human corpses. Here's a handy tip: stop a zombie by feeding it salt. You might be stocking up on shotguns for the zombie apocalypse, but I'm buying a salt mine!