6.20.2017

What makes a child a reader?


The kids are out of school. You're tearing your hair out, wondering how to steer them away from the video games and internet. They don't want to read a book. That's something you have to do in school, right?

I grew up in a non-book household. No. Books. Anywhere. Strange to think of it now. I was led to a lifelong love of reading by... a movie. Them. Radioactive giant ants! Scared the pants off me when I was little, but it opened my world to science fiction. (The movie also gave me a lifelong loathing of ants, by the way.)

When I started school, I discovered you could borrow books and take them home! Yay! I found stories every bit as good, and better, than that dratted movie.

Maybe your children could find a companion book for their favorite video game and discover a world beyond the screen?

What memories do you have of discovering the world of books?

*********************

And in other exciting news... Fire and Mist, book 3 of the Well of Souls series is out!



Blurb:

Derek Mackay, 16th century laird and Druid extraordinaire, is doubly cursed—with knowledge he isn’t supposed to have, and by a goddess whose wrath he didn’t mean to incur. The curse promises sure death to any betrothed of his, including the beautiful woman surrounded by Immortal magic who suddenly appears in his life and arouses in him a wellspring of bittersweet desire. The only way to save her is to stay away from her.

Erin Kelley is restless, craving the missing piece in an otherwise contented life. Romance. A man to take her breath away. A man to keep for life. A family to cherish with him. Swept back in time on a dare, she’s confronted by an angry Highland laird—an alpha male both irresistible and determined to keep her at arm’s length. His words push her away, but his emotions pull her in. Ordinary contentment will never again be enough—not when the world contains the extraordinary Laird Mackay.


***

Yes, it’s a romance, but it’s also about adapting to the curveballs life throws at us. Struggling to persevere against the odds. Becoming victorious in the end, despite the sorrows we’ve endured in getting there. Okay… and being able to shake our fists at the universe and yell, “You can’t break me,” because that’s a fun thing to do. I hope you enjoy the journey.

And if you haven’t read any of them yet, Immortal Desires, book 1 in the series, is on sale for .99 right now. Go grab your copy!


About the author:

Cerise Laudine loves sexy Highlanders, seductive alpha males from the Otherworld, and bold women who can bring them to their knees and rock their world. Time-travel, star-crossed, or interdimensional, her stories always have a happily ever after. Though the twisted path of laughter and tears is the real journey, isn’t it? Come walk the paths with her and share in the experience.
She also writes darker tales, using the twisted side of her brain, as River Fairchild.
Cerise’s Amazon page: http://amzn.to/2pR4awe



6.13.2017

Down the rabbit hole to research historical fantasy

Lithograph by J. Childs depicts two of Philadelphia's notorious
Moyamensing gang killers of the mid-1800s
One of the strange and wonderful perks of writing historical fantasy is doing research. Right now, I am developing characters to populate my next witch novel, set in the mid-1800s in Philadelphia. I need con men and women, murderers, petty thieves and prostitutes. Can you tell I like the dark side? And so far, I’m finding excellent, twisty rabbit holes containing lots of skeevy mischief.

Take the typical misbehaviors for women at this time, where the punishment seems out of whack with the crime: a thief getting five years imprisonment for stealing a dress from a tailor, or a large plate of oysters from a tavern.

There were children in prison as well. One of the youngest girls in the records, 11-year-old Ann McQuillan, was convicted and sentenced to four years in prison for 'theft by housebreaking'.

Con men advertised in newspapers to sell “oxygenizing machines” that actually contained laughing gas to supposedly cure folks with lung disease! They hawked counterfeit currency to gullible businessmen, who received a package of green cut paper (thus, the “green goods swindle”). Big Bertha Heyman was so good at conning money from men, she could even pull it off in prison.
Big Bertha, an ingenious swindler of the 1800s
conned a man out of $900 (now about $20,000) while behind bars!

Even in the supposedly civil city of Philadelphia, Irish gangs like the Schuylkill Rangers, began by resisting anti-Catholic attackers, then evolved into organized delinquency.  They became river pirates, demanding a tax from barges heading to the city, and robbing the trade carried across the river at nearby Gray’s Ferry.

One of my characters is a “retired” prostitute, and I hit the mother lode yesterday, when I discovered there were Gentlemen’s Guides to Dens of Iniquity, a kind of wink-wink description of the “worst” establishments in the city. These guides were printed for most big cities. One of the funniest revelations was that a religious seminary on the west side of NYC was once an infamous brothel.
Built in 1819 for a seamstress, this brick house in what is now the New York University area, became a brothel in the mid–1800s—about the time the city’s wealthier citizens relocated uptown.

When I have enough interesting factoids the challenge will be to cull the best of my research and piece together the criminals and cons to form the core band of my players. Each will have their own backstories, flaws and quests.

Do you write historical fiction? If so, do you like doing research? What is the strangest tidbit you’ve unearthed so far along the way?

6.09.2017

Book Review: GUARDIAN OF THE GRAIL #paranormal #specfiction

GUARDIAN OF THE GRAIL (Immortal Blood-Book One) 
by Elena Bryce


Before vampires, they were Guardians, drinking the sacred blood of the Holy Grail, and sworn to protect it through the ages. 

When Lachlan Thorn is entrusted with the task of relocating the Grail to a castle in the Scottish Highlands, he requires the help of a witch to conceal it on the perilous journey. Unfortunately for him, the only one available is Ivy, who is untrained and a descendant of the woman who broke his heart. 

For Ivy, helping to protect the Grail gives her a chance to do something good with her magic and learn more about it. But once the Grail is out in the open it draws the attention of both vampires and vampire hunters alike, and before long Ivy is facing an ancient and powerful foe that she has no chance of escaping. 

Forced to tap into the deeper magic, Ivy must travel through time, linking with her ancestors and experiencing witch trials to take on the power that is her heritage. She might also learn the startling truth about her connection to Lachlan. 

A Grail Quest, a deadly enemy, and a love that transcends time. 
Action packed Urban Fantasy. Grab your copy now! 


Cathrina's Review:

Over the years I've watched dozens of vampire movies. Some good,  some great, and some not so great. Even as far back as the old black and white versions with the famous Bela Lugosi. However, I've only read a handful of vampire books, including the Twilight Series and Christine Rains book, OF BLOOD AND SORROW. 

I thoroughly enjoyed the Christian twist that the author, Elena Bryce incorporated into her book. It was totally unique and refreshing to read. The pace is fast and action packed and a romance which helped to keep my interest. 

We have a young pretty witch, and a handsome man who looks like he's in his twenties, but in actuality he's ancient, and another immortal that's willing to kill everything in sight in order to acquire the holy grail.

The story goes all the way back to Joseph of Aramethea, a disciple of Jesus, and his quest to keep the holy grail safe from evil hands. Guardians drink blood from the grail which make them immortal. Their main purpose is to protect the grail. They become known as vampires, but not all vampires are good. The sections of the book where it explains the different kind of vamps was intriguing and like I said before~unique, which is why this story stands apart from the rest.

6.06.2017

LavaRex, Frogzilla, Ice Bats, and Spacebergs! What fantastic disaster can you come up with? #ScienceFiction #giveaway

Sharknado, Atomic Twister, Mega Piranha, Sharktopus...

The latest in sci fi movies that mimic their 1950's drive-in counterparts are just as cheesy and fun. Sometimes the effects are better..



sometimes they're not.


They're some of my favorite movies to watch, especially in the summer. I think the link to the drive-in is why I like them best in summer.

Try your hand at some titles. Best 5 get a copy of Pew! Pew! You can enter as many times as you like. Contest ends 6/13/2017.

 Here are some creatures to inspire you.








Here are some disasters:

Earthquake

Nuclear Disaster

Alien Invasion

Volcanic Eruption

Rapid Glacier Melt




Big Bat Meltdown? Volcanic Frog? Mega Frog vs. Mutant Yeti? Have fun...


Pew! Pew! Sex, Guns, Spaceships... Oh My! 99c Countdown Deal!


Now a Best Seller!

Pew! Pew! Sex, Guns, Spaceships... Oh My! is on sale for 99c until June 10th. Snap it up! It contains my new story, "Spaceberg." Spaceberg involves a huge chunk of ice in space, moss balls with teeth, and dancing plastic flowers. What's better than plastic? Organic plastic!

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BOOK FUNNEL / INSTAFREEBIE

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