Wednesday, 19 June 2019

Death at the Dakota




Marni Graff writes two award-winning mystery series: The Nora Tierney English Mysteries and The Trudy Genova Manhattan Mysteries. She teaches writing workshops and mentors the Writers Read program, and is Managing Editor of Bridle Path Press. 



Graff also writes the crime review blog Auntie M Writes, www.auntiemwrites.com.



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Nurse Trudy Genova is making plans to take her relationship to NYPD detective Ned O'Malley to the next level, when she lands a gig as medical consultant on a film shoot at the famed Dakota apartment building in Manhattan, which John Lennon once called home. Then star Monica Kiley goes missing, a cast member turns up dead, and it appears Trudy might be next. Meanwhile Ned tackles a mysterious murder case in which the victim is burned beyond recognition. When his investigations lead him back to the Dakota, Trudy finds herself wondering: how can she fall in love if she can't even survive?

Readers of Death Unscripted, the first book in the Trudy Genova Manhattan Mystery series, will find the same pleasures in this sequel: fast pacing, engaging characters, twists and turns on the way to a satisfying close. From the award-winning author of The Nora Tierney English Mysteries, this second series is a winner. Once again M.K. Graff reveals her talents in crafting this delightful mix of amateur sleuth and police procedural.

Part procedural, part cozy, Death at the Dakota is a well-crafted and highly entertaining mystery.- Bruce Robert Coffin, #1 bestselling author of the Detective Byron mysteries.  

I fell in love -- not only with co-protagonists, Trudy and Ned, the richly detailed and historic setting of The Dakota, and the unique cast of characters, but with the unusual plot of Death at the Dakota. Sherry Harris, Agatha Award nominated author of the Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mysteries




  
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Snippet:

Rashid was right about one thing: the trumpet gown with horizontal stripes did make Monica look like a Slinky. That one went right back on the hanger, without debate from anyone.

          Next up, the Monique Lhullier, heavy lace fitted down past Monica’s derriere that flowed into a wide circular train. Expensive it might be, but it reminded me of the curtains from my Nana Genova’s house.

          “Too heavy, Rashid,” Monica complained. “I’m too short to carry all this around.” She didn’t mention the way it strained over her small belly.

          The Jenny Packham was so sheer it couldn’t be worn with any kind of undergarment. Made of silk charmeuse, it shimmered as Monica dropped it over her head. “Packham’s done Sex and the City, The Devil Wears Prada, and of course, Casino Royale,” Rashid gushed, adjusting a large bow under the deep-V neckline. He stepped back. “There. What do you think?”

          I thought Monica’s slightly rounded belly showed in a too obvious way. “Does it remind you of a nightgown, Alice?” I asked, raising my eyebrows and opening my green eyes wide to convey the message “help me out here.”

          “Nix this one, Rashid,” Alice said authoritatively. “She can’t wear a bra with it and you’ll never get those nipples past the censor for the TV-G rating.”







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Tuesday, 18 June 2019

Healing Hands






Parents to four wonderful children, Jerry and Stephanie Jaeger enjoy working together as J.S. Jaeger to write uplifting, entertaining stories. 

Jerry overcame bullying to earn his black belt in Kempo Karate. He served as a special agent for the FBI and currently works as a prosecutor. 

Stephanie ran her own accounting practice for several years before turning her focus to writing Scrolls of Zndaria with Jerry. 

Together, they are excited to bring readers of all ages into the magical world of Zndaria.





Denya’s excited to attend the Healing Hands Academy. It’s her chance to become a handmaiden, help others, and live a life of adventure.

But studying at the Academy isn’t everything she’d hoped. The headmistress and many of the students still look down on human handmaidens. It seems as quickly as she makes friends, she has to say goodbye. And just as she starts gaining acceptance, she puts the other students in danger.

Is Denya’s determination enough to see her through, or will she be sent home, back to the peasant life she’s trying to escape?
The second Short Scroll of Zndaria, Healing Hands parallels The Golden Wizard and allows readers to see the magical world of Zndaria through Denya’s eyes. Readers will be reunited with favorite characters from the main series as well as experience life in the Redwood Forest.
Buy this book today to get a glimpse into the world of Zndaria or delve deeper into the journey that began in The Golden Wizard!



  
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Snippet:

Denya dashed forward, closing the gap between her and the wolves. A wolf caught the back of one of trolls’ worn-out shirt in its teeth. Denya brought her stick down on the wolf’s head. It skidded into the ground with a piece of fabric stuck in its mouth. The young trolls escaped across the bridge. The second wolf lunged at Denya. She met its chest with a blow in mid-air. It fell to the ground. Snarling, both wolves rose and circled Denya.
“Leave me alone!” She swung the stick frantically. “Leave!” She fought to keep from panicking, but tears stung her eyes.

The wolves nipped at her. She struck one in the snout. It growled and snapped at her again. Denya continued swinging her club, searching for an escape that didn’t exist. One of the wolves bit her cloak, ripping through the hem. She couldn’t remember a time she’d feared for her life like this.





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Monday, 17 June 2019

Stevie-girl and the Phantom Pilot - Book One of Series






Ann has been a writer since junior high, but to pay the bills she has waited tables, delivered newspapers, cleaned other people's houses, taught school, and had a stint as a secretary in a rock-n-roll radio station. She also worked as a 911 operator and a police dispatcher. 

Her fiction began to win awards during her college days. Since then she's published several short stories, novels, and novellas. She’s always reading and always writing, but even if she never sold another story, Ann would not stop writing. For her it's a necessity, like breathing. Most of the time, it even keeps her sane.


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No matter who dares you, no matter what lures you, do not go in the spooky old house…


When a small planes crashes behind Jase's rural home, the ghost of the pilot begins to haunt him. Jase can't figure out what to do until the day he sees his classmate, Stevie-girl, enter the legendary haunted house. That's when he decides if anyone can help him solve the mystery, she's the one. 










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Snippet:

The West Texas night wind whispered and whistled around the window frames. I was in my mom’s favorite chair reading The Tell-Tale Heart when I heard the stuttering drone of a small plane. In our rural setting, it sounded very low and very loud.
Then the noise stopped.
Lady, the German shepherd I’d found lying mangled and near death beside the road, was standing in front of the picture-window, head cocked to one side.
The silence was thick and cold.
As we watched, the tail of a small plane disappeared behind the line of firs west of the house. There was still no sound but the wind.

I dialed the operator and told her what I’d seen. She immediately patched me through to the Sheriff’s office so I could tell the dispatcher what had happened. Then I ran outside to see what I could see. Lady was right behind me.





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Friday, 14 June 2019

The Immundus





Christina Enquist is a YA author and aspiring bookstore owner. She lives with her boyfriend and several pets in Visalia, Ca.













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Would you sacrifice your humanity to save mankind?

IT’S THE YEAR 2828, and Domus is the last remaining country. Divided into twelve walled cities known as genuses, Domus spans what’s known as the purist lands—lands unaffected by the genetic modifications that killed all other species of mammals. But outside the walls of each genus the Immundus threaten the welfare of those within. From a young age, all citizens of Domus are trained for combat against these intruders.


At sixteen, Nia Luna knows little of the Immundus, except for the citywide alarms that ring any time an Immundus nears the genus walls. What she does know is that her own species is dying—their numbers dwindling as a mysterious disease called allagine kills many before their eleventh birthday. The same disease that ravaged her family when it took her sister.

When Nia is recruited into Genesis, a research company pioneering the path to a cure, she knows that her dream to find a cure for allagine is finally within her grasp. But within weeks of starting at Genesis, Nia witnesses something she shouldn’t have—something that changes everything. As she sets down a dangerous path that uncovers national secrets, Nia will have to decide not only what kind of person she wants to be but also how far she’s willing to go to save humanity.


Snippet:

Just outside the door, a gray-haired but young-looking man, is speaking with Dr. Matus. Derek is by her side.
“Nia.” She puts her hand out to stop me from passing her. “This is Mr. Dyer. He would like to speak to you and Derek for a moment.”
“About?”
“A problem you may have experienced with an elevator this morning.”
“No problem,” Derek responds. “We made it to the lab on time. Didn’t we, Dr. Matus?”
“Yes, they did.” She shoots a concerned look at Mr. Dyer.
“I understand you went to the ostrich floor.”
“No. A man who was in the elevator went there. We were headed here,” I say.
“Nevertheless, I must take you to administration for further questioning.”
“Why can’t you ask them here?” Dr. Matus asks, her tone thick with confusion.
“That is beyond your level.”
She stabs him with a look of disdain. He walks us through the lab to the elevator. All eyes are on us.
On the administration floor, we’re directed to a room at the end of the hall, where the light appears dimmer than the light on the other end. The room is bare, with white walls and a table with chairs in the center.
“What did you hear and see on the ostrich floor?”
“Nothing.” The word bursts from Derek’s and my mouth simultaneously.
“Don’t lie to me.” His words were razor sharp, cutting into my conscience. “I have video.” The room begins to feel more like a cell.
“Then why are you even asking us?” Derek says. “You saw whatever we saw. Why are you questioning us like this?”
“I want to hear from you what you think you saw and heard.”
“I told you. Nothing. I don’t know what I saw or heard,” I say.
His eyes are deep and dark, shaped like pumpkin seeds, but with a
narrow lid.
“Tell me what you saw now!”
“We saw the man. He pressed the ostrich button and scanned his hand and arm. He got out on the floor. We heard a scream. There was a flash of color. That’s it. You know what we saw, and it was nothing, and we did nothing. Why are we here?! Tell us!” Derek explodes before snapping his mouth shut, breathing heavily through his nose.
Sweat forms in a single thin layer on my hands. “Are we in trouble?”
“Depends.”
“On what?” Derek asks.
“On whether you’re both true—” The media light on Mr. Dyer’s
temple flashes. “I need to take this call.” He steps outside and shuts the glass door. My father’s hologram appears. Derek and I watch the interaction. I’m unable to hear the conversation, but I catch one word—Immundus. Mr. Dyer notices we can see him and touches the door, changing it from see-through to white.
“He’s getting chewed out. I wonder who that is.”
“My father,” I admit.
“What floor does he work on?”
“I don’t know. I don’t know anything.”
“Well, he looks like he has more authority than Mr. Dyer. Maybe he’ll get us out of here.” Derek and I wait impatiently for Mr. Dyer to return.

He walks in, chagrinned, holding the door open. “You’re free to go.” He sends Derek a devious smirk. “For now.”





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Thursday, 13 June 2019

Daisies in the Driveway





Lauraine Henderson began writing as a child, poems and journaling, until babies, building houses, and bookkeeping jobs usurped her world. Now, well established in Oregon and with the children grown, she devotes her time to writing her favorite genre, clean romance. 

Years of life experience translate into plots, calamities, and happily-ever-afters as she writes her inspirational and romantic stories about fictional people who seem so real, you’ll want to know what happens after the book ends!


~ Blog ~ Website ~
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Allison Lockwood and Gavin Hunt have been offered the chance to take over the Lazy Daisy Inn and Campground so their respective grandparents, the current owners, can retire and marry. It seems all too easy for Ally and Gavin to prove themselves during the six-month probationary period until they’re fighting disasters at the campground and failing at over-optimistic baking expectations.

As Ally and Gavin slowly explore their growing attraction, they help each other fight fires, endure raging storms, and share a few passionate kisses. But there’s more than fires to fight when Ally’s grandfather disapproves of their budding romance and Ally is convinced Gavin has a girlfriend in the wings…a girlfriend expecting his baby!

Ride along as the two unlikely innkeepers figure out how they fit in their new life and learn the lesson taught by the Daisies in the Driveway.


  
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Snippet:

“They’re daisies.”
“Yeah, that doesn’t explain why we need to keep them when they’re making the driveway look tacky.”
“Not tacky. They represent the spirit of the inn.” Ally could see she wasn’t getting through to him by the lift of his eyebrows and the smile hovering around his mouth. She struggled to find the words and couldn’t explain, even to herself, why this was suddenly so important. “The inn is this place where people can get away from the real world and take time to relax. It’s a place where everyone fits in and can find peace.”
A look of understanding crept across Gavin’s face.
Ally trudged on. “The daisies that grow wild are the same. They need to be able to flourish even when they land in obscure places. The image of the inn…oh, how do I say this?”
“You’re doing fine. I’m all ears.”
Ally threw him a look, but she couldn’t be sure if he was being patronizing or genuine. The episode in the kitchen that morning was still echoing in her mind. “The daisies in the flowerbeds are there because we planted them. They are welcome and cultivated. They are like the people who’ve done everything right and have found their way in the world.”
Gavin nodded and Ally took it for encouragement.
“The daisies in the driveway are like the people who are trying to fit in and they get close, but they’re a little wild, yet desperate to be accepted. They need a place in this world, too. They need the same love and care the cultivated daisies get. It’s like the story in the scriptures of the seeds that fall by the wayside. If they land in good soil, they still grow and bear good fruit, even though they’re not in the place where the gardener wanted them originally. These daisies are still providing us with beautiful flowers. They deserve the chance to succeed.”
“They do?”
“Yes. They need our love and care because they’re trying harder and need more help.”
“Like people who are trying to fit in.”
“Yes.”
“Like you and me.”

“Well, when you put it like that, yes, like you and me.”





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