Friday, December 27, 2013

Angels Among Us #3

I haven't done an Angels Among Us post in too long.

This story touched my heart, and I had to share. In short, a little girl wrote a note to the Grandmother she lost a year ago, and sent it up to heaven in a pink balloon. On Christmas, she received a lovely locket and a note signed only 'Guardian Angel.'

Bless little Bella, her Maw-Maw and her Guardian Angel. *sniff*

~Dawn

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Crises Teaser ~ Chapter One



Crises
Fires of Providence II
*
Chapter One
Fanatical Desperation


Bored, wet, and sitting in a tree at midnight wasn’t a traditional birthday celebration, but it suited Rise Hawke just fine. She adjusted her position on the large branch, cursing the knot jabbing her butt, then leaned back against the trunk and ran fingers through her hair. She’d been up there for an hour. 
“C’mon,” she said. “It’s not like I’m hard to find anymore.” 
The metal bracelet on her wrist glowed brighter with every passing moment, announcing her presence to anyone who might be looking and there were a lot looking these days.  Conspicuous as she was, tracking her down should’ve been easy, or at least fast, but the party guests still hadn’t arrived. Fashionably late or directionally challenged; either way, she’d bring a flare gun next time to speed things up.

Rise peered through the leaves, scanning the empty bank lot. She had a clear view of her car, parked in front of the ATM with the motor running, driver’s door open, stereo blasting. With any luck, minions would take the bait and head in that direction, giving her an opportunity to size-up her enemies and initiate a surprise attack.  That was the plan, anyway.
A flash of movement sparked in her peripheral vision. She froze, watching as a wavering shadow took form, solidifying into a male figure. Her body reacted to the threat without prompting, a conditioned response borne from months of similar encounters. Muscles sprang to life, nerves tingled with anticipation, and all stray thoughts disappeared as she moved into a crouch, balancing on the balls of her feet, waiting.

The tree swayed in the evening breeze, and Rise grabbed an overhead branch to steady herself. Drops of rainwater fell from the leaves, hit her face and streaked down her cheeks. Minutes ticked by like taunts, tempting her to confront the lone angel hunter, but she wasn’t that stupid. Cowards never worked alone.

“Where are the others?” She breathed the words, then closed her eyes and concentrated, searching for any deviation in the nighttime sounds. As expected, she heard footfalls and soft voices, coming from a position just outside her field of vision. Two for sure, maybe three, all of them showing more caution than previous groups. Maybe they’d even present a challenge.

Rise slipped to a lower branch, smooth and silent, waiting for the minions to make their move. It wouldn’t be long; hunters were low on patience and suffered from a notorious lack of impulse control. She smiled. Six months ago, the same could’ve been said of her, but much had changed since then. Prudence had become a boring, yet necessary, bedmate.

She placed her hand on the Inferi, tucked into a customized holster hanging low on her hip, like an old-time gunslinger. Hellfire was the best weapon against minions, but she only used it as a last resort, preferring to fight her enemies fairly. Tonight, ‘fairly’ meant four against one.

“Happy Birthday to me,” she whispered, watching the new arrivals join the first.

She could best two minions without much difficulty, three if she was on her game and got the jump on them, but four? That was a stretch, even with the element of surprise and the Inferi. Still, retreat wasn’t an option at this point. Tinted windows on her car helped, but it wouldn’t be long before those minions figured out the ruse and came searching for her.

She slid down another branch, then dropped to the ground, staying low and in shadow. The hunters exchanged words she couldn’t hear, then spread out and headed toward her car, communicating with ridiculous hand signals that looked more like charades than tactics. The taller female appeared to be in charge; she stayed in front, the others glancing her way as though looking for guidance.

“You die first, then.” Rise pulled a knife from the ankle sheath strapped beneath loose scrub pants—a minion blade, slightly modified, filed down to a length better suited for concealment and long distance attacks. She had several more in the small pack flung over her shoulders; they were great help with runners, and there was always at least one.

She steeled her nerves. It wouldn’t be easy at this distance, but with luck, she’d kill the leader in one shot. With more luck, the others would panic and scatter, allowing her to pick them off one by one. She adjusted her grip on the dagger and reared back with her throwing arm, but then a horrid stench arrived on a burst of wind. The smell of death, mark of a minion, and it wasn’t coming from the group ahead.  Shit!

Rise whirled around and ducked, barely escaping injury from the hunter at her back. She spun away, dodging frenzied strikes and berating herself for being a fool. She risked a glance over her shoulder and saw the other ones sprinting toward the battle. Her control over the situation was deteriorating by the second.
“Fair fights are overrated, anyway,” she said, then grabbed the Inferi and gave her attacker a blast of hellfire. He wailed as flames consumed him, giving Rise a chance to continue her original plan. She aimed, flung the dagger, and scored a direct hit. The tall female dropped, shattering into shiny black shards of glass.

The remaining three hunters stopped short when their leader fell, and Rise didn’t give them a chance to regroup. She let loose with her most fearsome battle-cry, fired-up the Inferi and held it high with both hand. She charged forward, roaring all the way, leaving an ominous trail of sulfur and smoke in her wake. The display was little more than cheap special effects, but it worked.

The minions exchanged near-comic looks of confusion, then two of them backed away and almost tripped over one another as they fled. The third—an unarmed, petite female—stood rooted in place, eyes wide and focused on the approaching flames. Rise ignored her and ran after the deserters.
One got away, but she closed distance on the second, whipped a blade from her pack and heaved it with all her might. It spun through the air and hit hard, striking the minion’s upper leg. He staggered and fell, then tried to crawl away.

Rise walked the final distance, catching her breath and cursing her aim. Moving targets were a bitch. She approached with caution; injured didn’t mean helpless, a lesson she’d leaned the hard way.
Sure enough, her fallen enemy pulled the dagger from his leg and pushed off the ground, wobbly on his feet, but now holding a weapon in each hand.  She stopped dead in her tracks, placed her hand on the Inferi, but didn’t remove it from the holster.

“Come on,” he said, making a few stabbing motions in her direction. “If you think you can kill me, give it a go!” His eyes and tone projected confidence, but the slight shake in his voice betrayed fear. “What are you waiting for, Herald?”

Rise smiled. “You’ll find out in two minutes or so.”  She could’ve finished him off right then, but didn’t want to exert unnecessary effort.  If more hunters showed up, she’d need every drop of energy, and a blast from the Inferi would lead them right to her. No, she’d have to do this one the long way.

She stepped backwards as he advanced, stumbling and swinging away. Blood poured from his leg, leaving a dark trail as Rise led him around in circles, staying just out of reach and easily avoiding his weakening attempts to inflict damage. Two minutes came and went, but the blood loss finally took its toll; his eyes glazed, his arms dropped, and he fell to one knee.

“Sorry about the leg,” she said, moving behind him. “I intended this to be quick and painless.” She bent over and whispered into his ear. “A courtesy you wouldn’t have afforded me.” She slammed the Inferi into his head, splitting his skull in one shot.

She waited until he was nothing but shards, then retrieved both weapons and headed back toward her car. She kept her eyes moving, watching for any sign of trouble, but saw nothing except the petite female. The frightened little mouse stood in the same spot, eyes focused on the scattered glass shards at her feet.
Shock, fear, or a ballsy trick to lure her in, Rise couldn’t tell. It was unusual, though. She made one more sweep of the area, then headed over to investigate. The minion backed away, but made no move to attack or escape. Her wide-eyed stare could’ve rivaled any deer.

“Are you going to kill me?” She little more than mouthed the words.

“I should,” Rise said, stepping to within an arm-length. “I let you go, you come back, we end up right here all over again. Mercy only delays the inevitable.” She took another step and raised the dagger. “Why are you here? Tell me and don’t lie.”

“I did… terrible things during my lifetime,” she said, shaking. “I was condemned to the fires because—”

“Did I ask for a stroll through your failings? I know why you’re a minion, but most minions don’t hunt angels and the ones who do have a certain look about them; a look of fanatical desperation you don’t possess.” She held up a finger. “So, I ask again: why are you here?” She pointed to the ground, slow and deliberate.

“I don’t really know.” The pathetic little thing looked as though she would burst into tears at any moment. “I guess I just wanted to see for myself if the rumors were true, if there really was a new Herald.”

Rise pressed the tip of the dagger against the minion’s chest, exerting enough force to threaten but not injure. “You have your answer. There really is a new Herald, one with a dangerously low tolerance for bullshit.” She hardened her eyes and infused her voice with warning. “If you come after me again, I’ll turn you into glass, melt you down, and wear you as a necklace.” She flipped the weapon into a salute, then turned and strode away. After a protracted silence, a surprised voice called after her.

“You’re not going to kill me, then?”

Rise kept moving and didn’t look back.  “I don’t kill minions. I kill minions who hunt angels, specifically this angel, and you don’t qualify. You’re just an idiot living on borrowed time.” She flung a hand in the air and waggled her fingers. “If you’re still here when I get to five, I might change my mind. One…two…”

She only got to three. She tossed the Inferi into the car, then leaned against the door and ran fingers through her hair. Five minions—her personal best—and she came through without a scratch. Under normal circumstances, that would’ve been a good thing, but Rise wouldn’t know a normal circumstance if it had her in a chokehold. Not anymore.

She stared at her palm, the one bearing a cross-shaped scar. She had two others—a crescent moon framing her right eye and a six-pointed star on the back of her shoulder—all of them thick, raised, looking more like intentional brands than battle wounds. 

She’d earned those marks with blood, each one a badge of honor bringing her one step closer to the black wings of a Herald. Her wings, ones stripped from her shoulders long ago, in another life she remembered only as disjointed images in a fractured dream. She’d fight any battle, kill every adversary, suffer whatever indignity she must to reclaim her rightful position. She needed only the opportunity.

Rise clenched her fist and punched the car, denting the metal and bruising her knuckles. She’d been waiting six months for another trial, another chance to prove her worthiness. Each day that passed without one, siphoned off patience and replaced it with anger.

She knew where she belonged, and it sure as hell wasn’t up a tree in Indiana.

Monday, August 12, 2013

A funny thing happened on my way to hell...

Writing a story about angels can get tricky.

Those winged critters are irrevocably linked with religion, and few topics inspire more passion, both positive and negative.

I knew this going in, and I knew I'd have to tread carefully. But not too carefully, because that's just, you know, boring.

I really didn't worry about offending someone, because of course I was going to offend someone. Hell, I could manage that walking the dog in my pajamas or driving barefoot.

Still, I did make a conscious effort to weave a respectful tone throughout the story, in regard to the spiritual aspects. I didn't do that because I felt I had to, I did that because it's part of the plot, I'm not an asshat, and I hold genuine respect for my own beliefs and those of others. That being said...

My characters are opinionated bastards who don't always share my views.

Despite mental preparation for such an event, I was a bit stunned when an acquaintance of mine - who happens to be very devout - gave me back the autographed book I gifted him. He only read a few chapters before deciding it wasn't his thing. Fair enough. I was disappointed on a personal level, but not angry or upset. I don't even want to imagine a world where everyone likes and dislikes the same things. And I appreciated the honesty. I'll take Hard Truth over Easy Lie for eternity, Alex.

Then The Incident happened.

Devout Acquaintance started listing aspects of the story he didn't like, and they all centered around my interpretation and representation of certain religious aspects. He told me where I was wrong and had a list of bible verses to prove it. An actual list. Hand-written. In bullet form.


Upon further discussion, I discovered Devout Acquaintance assumed that what I wrote in my book was a reflection of my own beliefs. Beliefs that might be my one-way ticket to a fiery afterlife, and he assumed (rightly this time) that I was more of a pro-heaven type of gal.

I did my best to explain. Had I been writing Christian fiction, I would've followed religious canon, but I felt no such obligation with Urban Fantasy.

Sadly, I think my words bounced off and went spinning into space like a rogue asteroid. I disengaged as quickly as possible, but my retreat wasn't nearly as cool as I would've liked. Think stammering, awkward smile, fumbling with my phone and pretending to get a text. Smooth as an elbow to the boob.


I've thought about The Incident a lot, much more than I'd like to admit. It's weird. I've received all sorts of feedback on the story - positive and not so positive, glowing reviews and harsh reviews and everything in between.


I've
handled it all pretty well, but for some reason, the assumption that I was trashing religious belief really, really got to me - so much that I'm blogging about The Incident nearly a year after it occurred. Closure. Get some. I know.

I'm not angry, just a little butthurt because I know that's not what I'm about, and it's not what Fires of Providence is about, either. But short of putting a warning label on the cover, there's not much I can do. Five hundred readers, five hundred views, that sort of thing. I get it.

What I'm trying to say is this: if I do something or say something or write something that could be interpreted in different ways, I hope people choose  the one that doesn't piss 'em off. Because that's probably what I was going for. :)

~ Dawn













Thursday, August 8, 2013

Cover Reveal for Rearranged by Tina Carreiro!


Carly West is good at taking care of herself—she’s been doing it since her mama died. She can even make marrying a man she didn’t choose work. But when gorgeous ranch foreman, Wade Dawson struts into her life, everything changes. Her life starts to unravel, lies are uncovered, and the only comfort she finds is in the arms of a stranger.

Wade Dawson has one thing on his mind, to fulfill his brother’s responsibilities and get the hell out of this small town. But he soon finds out he wasn’t only hired to watch the ranch, but to see that the farmer’s daughter makes it down the aisle. It’s the first job he isn’t sure he can follow through with. But if he doesn’t, his brother’s reputation and freedom is at stake.

Bound by obligation to marry another man…

Bound by blood to save his brother…

Will one night destroy it all?




COMING AUGUST 23rd, 2013
Title: Rearranged
Author: Tina Carreiro
Paperback: 214 pages
Publisher: Time and Tide Publishing
Language: English
Release Date: August 23rd 2013
Print
ISBN – 13: 978-0-9892549-5-3
        ISBN-10: 0-9892549-5-X
Ebook
        ISBN-10: 0989254968
        ISBN-13: 978-0-9892549-6-0



About the Author

Tina spends her days writing and creating fantasy worlds until she’s forced back into reality where she pretends to be “normal.”

When not writing, she’s a full-time cub scout/camping/gymnastic/PS3 mom for her son and daughter and a devoted wife to her leading man, the love of her life-husband.

She’s addicted to writing, romance novels, zombie movies, and coffee with caramel macchiato creamer. She fully believes in karma and pours her heart into everything she does.  She loves life and embraces every moment of it.


Where to stalk Tina






a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Uprising Blog Tour Info

I'm super excited to announce this Blog Tour, hosted by the fantastic Read Between the Lines!

I've posted the full schedule below, as well as the give-a-way link. I'll also be updating my author page on Facebook every day, with links to the events.

~ Dawn








SCHEDULE 



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Sunday, June 16, 2013

Clicks



Back in 2004, my Father-in-Law was killed by a drunk driver. I'm not going to use her real name here.  She's paid her debt to society, her soul is her problem, and I don't like to tattle-tell. 

This woman, Lori, had been hitting the casino AND the bottle (Two vices for the price of one, can I get a hallelujah?) and she was hitting it hard - to the tune of .19 (twice the legal limit in Indiana)

Thinking back on my Marine Corps days, I can safely say I probably hit the .19 mark and kept on going more than a few times. I may not clearly remember all of them, but I do know I never hopped in my car when I was in such a state. However, I didn't own a car at the time and that might skew my results. There but for the Grace of God, my friends.

Fast-forward to 2007.
After two and half years of waiting and watching a high priced attorney with very good hair try every legal maneuver he could think of to get his guilty-as-hell client out of the mess she created, we finally got some good old fashioned American Justice. She took a plea deal. *sigh*

During the sentencing hearing, my husbands and his family had the opportunity to make victim impact statements and say what sentence they would like to see imposed. Lori's  family and friends got a chance to say why they think she should get a suspended sentence and go back home to her castle in the sky. Neither side walked out of court happy.


4 years with 18 months probation is what the judge decided. That means she will serve about 2 years if she's a good girl and plays nice with others. Four years doesn't sound like a fair trade for a life, but it is what it is. It's something, and more justice than other families ever get.

I think the most dramatic moment came when the judge asked the corrections officer to 'escort' Lori out of the building after the sentencing. The officer instructed the state's newest convicted felon to stand and place her hands behind her back.

The courtroom was very quiet, and anyone who ever watched a cop show or had a less-than-vanilla love life knows handcuffs make a very distinctive sound. There is the initial click when the cuffs are snapped into place followed closely by a series of little clicks as they are tightened and locked down.

In that hushed courtroom, the sound was particularly loud, each click representing justice, relief, perhaps renewed faith in The System and possibly even a measure of closure. For our side, anyway. I can only imagine what those clicks meant to Lori's family, a family about to lose one, essential member.

Was Lori's income essential for her family?
*click*
Did she always make the Turkey on Thanksgiving?
*click*
Did she always decorate the tree on Christmas?
*click*
Did she drive her children to school? To the orthodontist? To church?
*click*
Will she miss graduations? Marriage? Maybe the birth of a grandchild?
*click*

Such a waste. Such a preventable and costly waste. I'd wrap this up with profound words of caution, but anything I could say has already been said, and probably said better.


~ Dawn

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Uprising Review Trailer

video
I'm winding down the marketing for Uprising and gearing up for Crises. Videos are fun, though. :)

~ Dawn


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Autographed books ready to roll

Here's the link for autographed copies of Uprising, first book in the Fires of Providence
series.

 The link is for orders within the United States and  includes the autographed book, random swag, and priority shipping via USPS.

International friends, I haven't forgotten about you! I'll post links as soon as I figure out which shipping option is  most affordable ,or you can message me directly for pricing information.

If you'd like a personalized inscription, please provide the name in the message section of the order page. Otherwise, it's just the signature.

Click away!

~ Dawn


Saturday, April 13, 2013

Things I Learned Watching Spartacus

Allow me to break words.
After four epic seasons, Spartacus has come to a dramatic and heart-wrenching end. I cannot allow a show such as this to fade without proper tribute, so I present things I loved and learned watching Spartacus:


Kids are dicks.

The Gladiator Forearm Slap.

More than a handshake and less that a hug, this move screams Bromance.

Want to have some fun? Try picturing any two women in the series greeting one another like this. Heh.


Oenomaus.

"I'll take 'Baddest mother-fucker on the planet' for 1000 danari, Alex."

*Apologies*
The first word every Roman baby speaks.
Has the magical ability to erase all grievances.
*
A new song for Oktoberfest! 
Or baptisms and funerals, depending on which side of the family is hosting.


Kids are dicks.


Severed heads send strong messages .
Texting is all caps...doesn't.
(Ashur is totally air-texting here)














***
If anyone says you'll be properly attended, you're going to die.  
***

S
partacus Meets the Matrix






Agron meets Cirque De Solei













Crixus meets an 80's Grunge Band







Gannicus

         
Part surfer dude, part rock star, all gladiator: this guy lives for wine and women and conditioner. When he's not indulging in those things, he kills men blindfolded and talks like Ozzy.


***
"It's no easy task, to sever a man's head."

Thanks for the heads-up on that, Crixus.
***



SAXA 
"I am equal to any man !"
She said it. She proved it. And she's quite possibly the best girlfriend ever.

Kids are dicks.    
                                         


The Missio
Gladiator-talk, loosely defined as taking your toys and going home.







Naevia
"Even if we find her, she won't be the same woman from memory."


Because the original actress was replaced, perhaps? I see what you did there, DeKnight.









GAY GAY GAY!
No agenda, no political statement, no one batting an eye.
How cool is that?


Gold Masks

Might want to look under those before you get too excited.



***
There's more, but this post is starting to look like a Tumblr page so I better wrap it up.
Thank you Team Roman and Team Rebel.
You will be missed.

~Dawn





Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Uprising Deleted Scene #2 Rise at the Clinic

Walk write this way, please...

I was taught that every scene, every line, every word, should do one of two things: Advance the plot or build a character.

Even when this standard is met, there's still the issue of wordiness. If you can say something using 5 words, don't use 50. Hell, don't even use 6. Few books look good in purple.  


Sounds easy enough (not!) and you're confident all unnecessary words have been eliminated. Then the noble editor arrives, charging into the fray on a white horse, sword in hand, ready to cut, slice and kill all irrelevancies. This scene, for instance!

This was a scene I loved, but the editor suggested it be eliminated or, at the very least, be shortened to speed the pace. Hearing those words...it felt like my heart had been ripped out of my chest Indiana Jones style. Still, I wasn't going to risk seven years of bad luck by arguing with an editor. :)

There were some character insights I wanted to keep, so I opted to re-work this scene into a shorter version. It's gone from the story, but remains within my melodramatic soul.

Rise at the Clinic
(original)

She crushed down the trash, but was intercepted by Tammy, a Veterinary Technician with a long string of initials after her name from various specialty degrees. Common courtesy 101 was not part of the curriculum.

“Put this person in exam one.” She thrust a file at Rise and kept walking.

Rise looked down at the client record in her hand. “I don’t know how.” She’d only been trained in janitorial duties.

“Jesus Christ,” Tammy hissed, striding back. “Go out there. Call the name and put the dog on the scale.” She was talking deliberately slow. “Write down the weight. See this little line where it says ‘weight’? Right there. Ask the owner what’s wrong and write it down it this big, white area. Then put the chart on the door. It’s not rocket science. I’ll take care of the part that requires actual skill.”

Tammy blew out of the room, and Rise took a moment to process the situation. She didn’t want to make a mistake, especially not after Tammy’s comments. Rise headed to the lobby and tried to look natural, like she did this job every day. Doctor Mark was still out there with his potential next ex-wife, and Rise hoped he noticed how she was going out of her way to be helpful. She could use a raise.

“So, what seems to be the problem with Picasso today?” Rise asked once she had the client in the room. The dog was some sort of mixed breed, all different colors with a curling tail going in circles so fast it was a miracle she didn’t propel off the ground.

“She’s a rescue,” the woman said, and Rise had to attune her hearing to understand the accent that was like something out of a movie. “All of my dogs are rescues, okay?”

It sounded like she said ‘oil of my dogs are rez-cues’ and Rise tried not to laugh. How this woman came to be in Indianapolis was probably a great story.

Rise wrote down ‘rescue’ on the chart and nodded.

“I never had problems with any of my dogs before,” the woman continued and she waved her hand. Her nails were at least three inches long and bright red. “But this one, I have a problem with. I love my dog, okay?”

“Okay.”

“She uses the bathroom on the floor, even though she knows she’s supposed to go outside. I think she does it just to make me mad, because like I said, she knows she’s supposed to go out. And she barks when it rains.”

“She barks?” Rise had to stop herself from saying ‘bachs’.

“All the time, when it rains! And it rains a lot here, on account of all the farms. I know the rain is good for the corn, but it’s not good for my dog.”

Rise wrote that down, the important parts anyway. She left out the stuff about the corn.
“So I’ve got no history about this dog, I adopted her from the shelter back in New Jersey. That’s where we’re from.”

“Never would’ve guessed,” Rise whispered, far too quiet for the woman to hear.

“So I’m thinking the dog might have been born with a mental problem; maybe she got it from the mother? Or maybe she’s not a smart dog, I dunno, I’m not a doctor. But my husband, he works over at the pharmaceutical company now, right? He tells me that drug, the one for the suicidal women, you know which one I mean? He tells me dogs can take it. Is that right?”

Rise stared at the woman, remembering why she preferred dealing with dog shit over people. She had no idea what to write down or how to answer the question. Picasso was sniffing at her feet and she patted her head, stalling.

“You’ll need to ask Doctor Mark about that.” That was the go-to answer when techs didn’t know the answer.
“Well yeah, that’s why I drove all the way over here with my dog. I love my dog, but I can’t have a dog that uses the bathroom in the house. And the barking at the rain! I tell her, ‘no bark Picasso, no bark!’ But that doesn’t work with her.”

“I totally understand.” Rise added another falsehood to the list she was racking up today. Picasso looked to be a nice dog; she was sitting now, with her tongue hanging out.

Rise retreated from the exam room a little defeated. She caught up with Tammy and did her best to explain the situation, but the tech just rolled her eyes. Rise had no idea what that meant. She went back to getting the trash.


Namaste ~
Dawn




Thursday, February 28, 2013

Which way does your writing swing?

Do men and women write differently? Can the gender of an author be determined by the words they choose? Some say yes and there's a test to prove it.






I was curious to see if this really worked, so I copied a few pages from my work-in-progress and pasted everything into the analyzer. My results?


Genre: Informal
  Female = 243
  Male    = 970
  Difference = 727; 79.96%
  Verdict: MALE



Does this mean I can stop shaving my legs?
~ Dawn







Monday, February 18, 2013

Hero to Zero in Three Minutes Flat

Allow me to serve as a warning for others.

A little while back, I found myself shuttling my daughter and her BFF to some sort of angst-ridden teenage event. They're huddled in the backseat, heads down over their cell phones and whispering about things I probably didn't want to hear anyway. Then, quite unexpectedly, they spoke. To me.



I never prepared for this particular eventuality. I mean, how often does a person engage their cab driver in conversation? I regrouped, and the following conversation ensues:

"I hear you wrote a book, Mrs. Jayne."

The honorific and overly- polite tone should've been my first clue something dastardly was afoot, but I just bobbed my head, grinned like an idiot, and hoped she had e-readers and expendable cash. I checked the rear-view mirror. I sense genuine interest. Score!

"So...what's it about?"

Eeek! Okay, play it cool, no big deal, just a question. I can do this. Don't look too anxious, keep it short. Don't want to scare her off.

"It's about angels, and...." I proceed with the synopsis, almost verbatim from the back-cover. I'm cool as a cucumber. I am rocking this!

"So...it's fiction?"

I would've thought the whole angel-element already cleared that up, but I don't say so. I make every attempt to sound quasi-bored as I answer various questions: How many pages? Did it come out this year? This is more interest than my own family has shown, and my leg is bouncing around like a dog getting a belly-run.

Then, unbelievably, the BFF asks about the characters!

At this point, I'm Sally Field.



Most writers talk for-ev-er about their characters. At least that's what I'm telling myself, because...well, I pretty much did.

There's more furious discussion about the plot and other things. I'm spending more time watching her decidedly not-bored expression instead of watching the road, so I wrap things up with a strategically placed verbal cliff-hanger. Then I hear this:

"What are the primary themes in the story?"

Crickets. Lighbulb. Devastation.

My reaction to finding out my pen-name is Cliff Notes?
















Trust no one.

Peace ~
Dawn

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Book Launch! Lucifer ~ a novel by Annabell Cadiz

I am so excited to be a part of the launch for this book! I've been looking forward to this, and cannot wait to grab my copy and start reading!






                                                        Lucifer
(Sons of Old Trilogy, Book 1)
Author: Annabell Cadiz
Genre: New Adult, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, Supernatural
Published: January 31, 2013

Synopsis: Have you ever wondered what could be hiding in the shadows?

Well, for eighteen-year-old Zahara Faraday, she doesn’t have to wonder. You see she comes from a lineage of Light Witches, those who have chosen to help protect and serve between the supernatural world and the human world. The only problem is Zahara, like her father Solomon, is as human as a human being can be whereas her mother, Mia, and her Aunt Catalina, were born as Light Witches. As a family they hunt down rogue supernaturals—creatures who harm humans or who have committed an act against their kingdom. 

Zahara’s hunting skills are usually kept dormant since her parents would prefer she live life as a normal human girl without knowledge of the supernatural world. She plans on doing just that—except when she finds a couple being attacked by fairies, she has no choice but to step in. Before she can return to pretending to be blissfully ignorant, Zahara encounters a problem she isn’t the least equip to handle: Bryan Hamilton, the good looking new co-worker she has to help train. In a heartbeat, her best friend, Becca King, has set her up on a double date with herself and her new crush, Rekesh Saint-Louis, who happens to be the most powerful leader of the biggest Imago Coven in South Florida –supernatural creatures with the ability to control water . . . and suck out human souls. 

Zahara has no time to focus on how she’s going to explain her double date with her best friend and the enemy they have a tentative truce with to her parents because soon one of the members of Mia and Catalina’s coven is found murdered with a strange tattoo of a snake with wings carved into his arm.

Zahara is then thrown into a whirlwind battle with an angel determined to have revenge against God, an Imago coven she doesn’t think they should trust, and slew of dream-eating fairies and powerful Nephilims, hybrid children of angels and humans, more than happy to rip her to shreds.

Normal just got a deadlier definition.

Excerpt

The fairy moved slowly, his eyes roaming the park for movement. He sniffed the air as the breeze wafted through the bushes then turned his attention sharply back to the bushes. Zahara jumped back to her feet to steer him away from Becca and took off running. The fairy ran after her, moving so fast Becca thought he could merge with the wind. She let out a long breath and stumbled out of the bushes, knowing her best friend couldn’t fight him alone.
Zahara just ran, trying to find a place to hide and catch her breath, but seeing none. She staggered forward as the wind pushed her from behind and was suddenly gripped by the neck by a hand composed of pure muscle. The fairy threw her onto the ground and raked his nails across Zahara’s face. Zahara managed to cover her face with her arms, and cried out as she felt the skin ripping open.
“Hey! Get the hell away from my best friend, you demon, tree-hugging bastard!” Becca yelled and rammed herself into him. She fell to the ground with the fairy and drove the dagger into his side as hard as she could. She flipped herself up off the fairy and jumped back to her feet, standing hunched forward with her muscles locked as the fairy stood.
He removed the dagger from his side and threw it onto the ground, eyeing Becca with a hard glare. Zahara aimed another arrow at him, but the fairy swung his arm out, throwing Zahara into the air with the strength of his power. He pounced on Becca, who managed to dodge him and stay on her feet. She eyed the dagger quickly, trying to measure how far she would have to jump to retrieve it. The fairy moved toward her and Becca leapt, except she couldn’t move. Her arms and legs were as rigid as an iron board. She couldn’t even blink.
The fairy curled his lips into a wicked smile and grabbed her hair, yanking her head back forcibly and bringing his lips to hers. Becca tried to close her eyes. If she closed her eyes than he wouldn’t be able to steal her memories or her dreams, but she couldn’t make her eyes listen. Her brain was sending out a loud warning signal, but nothing was happening. The fairy opened his mouth slightly and inhaled deeply. Becca saw the memory before it left her. It was the one where she had gone to the Father-Daughter Dance at church with her dad the year before. She could feel the memory fading, her dad’s smile and warm arms around her disappearing into darkness, as the memory was sucked out through her lips, a thick layer of blue, corporeal energy, before being transferred into the fairy’s mouth. Becca could feel tears streaming down the side of her face.
Zahara got onto her knees, and wavered back and forth as she tried to shake the pain out of her head. She grabbed another arrow from the canister strapped across her shoulders and aimed for the fairy. She blinked a few times, since her vision was still out of focus, shifting between seeing Becca and seeing a blurry version of her. She shut her eyes tightly and opened them again, staring intently at the fairy, and shot off the arrow. The arrow bounced off some kind of shield the fairy had put into place.
Zahara growled underneath her breath and took off running toward Becca and the fairy. She could see the blue stream of energy escaping Becca’s lips and felt her heart pounding in her veins as she roared and launched herself at the shield. The fairy paid no heed to Zahara’s attempt to save her best friend. Zahara pounded her fist against the invisible shield. She stepped back, breathing hard, and stabbed one of the arrows into the shield as hard as she could. The shield cracked and burst open as the tip of the arrow set itself on fire.
The fairy hissed at Zahara and threw Becca onto the ground. Zahara tried to aim the arrow at the fairy, but was once again thrown back by his power. Zahara lifted her head and grabbed the bow. She tried to get to her knees—every muscle in her body protesting—so she could aim another arrow, but the fairy threw her back again. Zahara cursed under her breath as her bow flew out of her hand and she was smacked into the back of a bench.
Zahara looked up toward the fairy, feeling behind her back for another arrow, but finding none. She cursed under her breath again. She had forgotten to restock them after training. The fairy was moving with slow steps, his eyes blazing in triumph as he neared her. He was enjoying having finally worn out his prey and Zahara scowled at him.
Suddenly, the fairy turned his head sharply to the right and another figure emerged. Zahara’s shoulders slumped back. She could not handle fighting off two of them; she wasn’t even sure how to defend herself against one of them without any kind of weapon. But Zahara realized the fairy wasn’t moving anymore. He was crouched forward and his hands were in fists. Zahara looked at the new figure and cringed. It was Rekesh. His skin revealed his true nature as he slid off the glamour and the moonlight caressed his bare neck and face, turning his skin silver.
Rekesh was an Imago, a creature born of a mermaid and the fallen angel Kutiel. He could move ten times faster than any human and had the strength to rip a human apart with his bare hands. During the day, he looked like an ordinary person but at night, in the moments Rekesh dropped the glamour of magic, his skin would turn silver because of the power of the moon. The moon controlled the ocean and since his ancestry connected to the water, when nightfall came, his strength increased, and so would his power to control the element of water, if he had not been exiled from the Celeste Kingdom. Rekesh, like any Imago exiled, was stripped of his elemental power, but that did not make any less dangerous.
            “You have one chance to make this easy for yourself,” the Imago spoke out. He had his hands placed behind his back, eyeing the fairy with patience as if he were training a puppy.
            Zahara used the back of the bench to help her rise slowly to her feet, keeping her eyes on the fairy and Rekesh.
            “This does not concern you, Moonlighter,” the fairy spat. 
            “Attacking humans is against the law, Pixie,” Rekesh said. He had not moved. His demeanor was as relaxed as when he had first stepped into the battle.
            The fairy curled his lip at the last word. “You are no longer part of the Royal Court. I do not answer to you.”
            Zahara inched toward her bow, which was stuck in a bush twenty feet from where she stood.
            “You are in my domain. Any supernatural creature caught attacking humans will be captured and returned to the Kingdom from which you were exiled for sentencing. Now, I can see you will not make this easy for yourself, so I suggest enough of the idle pleasantries,” Rekesh said, before he launched himself toward the fairy so fast Zahara barely had time to take a breath.
            Zahara took off running as Rekesh and the fairy fought, moving with the wind. She could hear the thundering of fists and the cracking of broken bones, but could not see them. She didn’t care. She ran to Becca, determined to get them out of there before either one of the supernatural creatures had time to recover.


VOTE FOR LUCIFER!

  About the Author: Annabell Cadiz was born in the sweltering heat of South Florida. She was raised surrounded by Puerto Rican chefs and band of siblings that weren’t all related to her.

A self-proclaimed nerd and book-a-holic (her room does hold much evidence to prove her claims are justifiable), she created TeamNerd Reviews to showcase her EXTREME love for novels where, along with her best friend, Bridget Strahin, she hosts book reviews, interviews, giveaways, Indie Shoutouts and much more.

She also blog tour services for authors. She also had the pleasure of being published in three separate issue of Suspense Magazine. She also adores Cinnamon Teddy Grahams, has an addiction to Minute Maid Orange juice, and is a proud Jesus Freak.

 Lucifer is the first book in the Sons of Old Trilogy.


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