Six YA Fantasy authors.
A chance to win SIX awesome YA eBooks.

Kick off your Summer Reading right with these awesome titles.
Enter to win on the Rafflecopter below, or click the links to purchase the books on! 

Nyssa Glass and the House of Mirrors

Author H. L. Burke
When reformed cat burglar Nyssa Glass is framed for murder, her only hope is to commit one last heist to prove her innocence. However, breaking into the “abandoned” house of an eccentric professor may very well be the last thing she ever does. 

Called Warrior

Author E. J. McCay
Preacher’s Kid MacKenzie Bryan is called by God to be a warrior. Now she has to battle a church elder at the helm of a sex-trafficking ring.

The Firethorn Crown

Author Lea Doue
Princess Lily, the eldest of twelve sisters and heir to a mighty kingdom, desperately seeks a break from her mother’s matchmaking. Fleeing an overzealous suitor, Lily stumbles into a secret underground kingdom where she and her sisters encounter a mysterious sorcerer-prince and become entangled in a curse that threatens the safety of her family and her people. Follow the sisters on their adventures in a land where sorcery is feared, women can rule, and dragons fly.

The Mirror and the Mage

Author D. W. Frauenfelder
Fourteen-year old Lucius Junius Brutus yearns to join the Roman army, but Lucius’ father directs him to guard the dusty, grammarly scrolls of Numa Pompilius. Lucius thinks he is in for the most boring job in the world– until he discovers the scrolls’ true purpose…

Finding Prince Charming

Author Jessica Elliott
Allegra is shocked to discover that rather than wait in a tower for her Prince Charming, she must embark on a quest to rescue him. She must face untold dangers and overcome her greatest fears. Her enchanted prince, Adrian, deals with match-making frogs, a flirtatious mermaid and an unknown enemy who will stop at nothing to prevent their happily ever after.

The Collar and the Cavvarach  

Author Annie Douglass Lima
Bensin, a teenage slave and martial artist, is desperate to see his little sister freed. But only victory in the Krillonian Empire’s most prestigious tournament will allow him to secretly arrange for Ellie’s escape. As danger closes in, can Bensin save Ellie from a life of slavery and abuse?

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On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Welcome to the Cover Reveal for
Scarred Beauty
By Jennifer Silverwood
Coming December 1st 2016…

(A Wylder Tale, #2)
YA Dark Fantasy

Vynasha has become prisoner with the other wyld beasts of the castle, but she is not alone. In the howling darkness her majikal bond with the Dungeon Master, Grendall grows, awakening the dormant power in her blood.

Yet as she discovers the true nature of the other beasts, she learns she must embrace madness in order to free them all. Vynasha is willing to do anything to end the curse, even if that means transforming into a monster.

Burried secrets come to light in this seductive sequel to Craving Beauty, the Gothic retelling of the classic fairy tale of Beauty and the Beast, where nothing is exactly as it seems and the heroine must be her own hero.

Pre-order from:

Other Books in the Series

Craving Beauty
(A Wylder Tale, #1)
by Jennifer Silverwood
YA Dark Fantasy
Paperback & ebook, 239 pages
October 31st 2015

Vynasha has spent the last four years tending her mother’s roses and looking after her nephew. The fire that killed their family has left her scarred and put Wyll on the brink of death. Soon the first frost will come down from the mountains and she knows this winter will be his last.

Until a strange beggar appears on the road, telling her of the majikal Source that can heal her Wyll. With nothing left to lose, Vynasha braves the forbidden Wylder Mountains to seek out a cure and her fate.

A lost kingdom is uncovered by an equally lost girl, but the castle is not abandoned as she believes. Shadows cloaking unseen eyes watch. Tapestries whisper from the hidden corners, wondering if the one to break their curse has come. And a hungry beast waits, ready to devour her soul.

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Wolfsbane’s Daughter
(A Wylder Tale Novella)
by Jennifer Silverwood
YA Dark Fantasy
ebook, 52 Pages
February 25th 2016

Wolfsbane and his daughter Resha are on a never ending quest in the Wylder Mountains, to wipe out the wolves who destroyed their village. Before their enemies stole everything she loved, Resha cared for little beyond learning how to be a hunter. After, she learned a hunter must be prepared to fight as well as flee. Now she cares for nothing but revenge.

Until she discovers two majikal humans half frozen in the forest. Resha has a choice, to follow her instincts and leave the strangers to the wolves, or save them. Yet the enemy is on the prowl and there is little time for Wolfsbane’s daughter to find safe haven before they are discovered.

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Jennifer Silverwood was raised deep in the heart of Texas and has been spinning yarns a mile high since childhood. In her spare time she reads and writes and tries to sustain her wanderlust, whether it’s the Carpathian Mountains in Transylvania, the highlands of Ecuador or a road trip to the next town. Always on the lookout for her next adventure, in print or reality, she dreams of one day proving to the masses that everything really is better in Texas. She is the author of the Heaven’s Edge series, Stay and Silver Hollow.


Other Books by the Author

Cover Reveal Giveaway

ebooks of all six of Jennifer’s books: Silver Hollow, Qeya, Ohre, Stay, Craving Beauty, and Wolfsbane’s Daughter (Open Internationally)

Copies of the first two books in A Wylder Tales: Craving Beauty (print) and Wolfsbane’s Daughter (ebook), plus swag (US Only)

Ends June 29th

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Book Tour Grand Finale for

The Bridal Bouquet
By Tara Randel
We hope you enjoyed getting to know more about flower shop owner Kady and undercover DEA agent Dylan as they face someone who threatens Kady’s life and the possibility of finding love. If you missed any of the stops, go back and check them out now…

Launch – Author Interview

What do you hope readers take with them after they’ve read it?

I love to read and any book that makes me sigh at the end is a keeper. As an author, I want to sweep readers away to a world they can lost in. With The Bridal Bouquet, I wanted to write a story that makes readers laugh, sigh and worry about the welfare of my characters. This book delivers all.

Rockin’ Book Reviews – Author Interview & Review

4. You are the author of ten novels, correct? Which novel did you find the most enjoyable to write? In what ways?
Twelve, actually. It sounds so weird to say that. I’ve enjoyed writing the Heartwarming books, mostly because I love romance and weddings, so it’s a good mix. Honestly, The Bridal Bouquet was probably my favorite. I loved the premise from the beginning, which gave me lots of ways to go in the story. I also loved the suspense element. This added layer gave me areas to explore that I had so much fun with. I also write mysteries, so the more I work on these types of books, the more fun I have.
Also, I had a blast creating the hero’s brothers. The family dynamics took off out of the blue and I gladly went for the ride. I never expected the boys to take over. Maybe they’ll have their own stories in the future…
“This was a delightfully, refreshingly, “clean” story about a woman obsessed about winning a floral convention entry. It wasn’t just vanity, she had a lot depending on it. It would affect the rest of her life! . . . I totally loved it!”

underneath the covers – The Language of Flowers
Because of her love for flowers, Kady is convinced that discovering the personalities of her bride and groom is the important first step. Some brides know right away what their floral theme will be, but for others, Kady quizzes the couple to help with the final decision. What is their outlook on love, romance and marriage? Do certain colors have an emotional response for the couple? Upon gathering all the information, Kady then picks the perfect flowers to personalize the special day.

Mel’s Shelves – Creating the Perfect Wedding…from the Florists Point of View
In The Bridal Bouquet, Kady’s dream is to take the family floral shop into the world of weddings. Love and romance may not be on the table for Kady at the beginning of the story, but her love for flowers remains steady throughout, a plus when coming up with fresh ideas for her clients.

Becky on Books – Author Interview & Review

Where did the inspiration for this book come from?
This is the fourth book in The Business of Weddings series. My editor and I discussed coming up with three wedding professionals for this book contract and the first one was a florist. I knew I wanted to have suspense elements in this story, so I plotted with this in mind. I love hunky, Alpha males and the DEA hero in this book fits the bill! Also, researching flowers was lovely. The history behind bouquets is quite interesting.
“A sweet romance with a touch of romantic suspense–a fun read!”

JoJo’s Corner – Review

“I absolutely LOVE wedding stories and Tara Randel’s The Business of Weddings series is one of my favorites! . . . This novel is full of humor, memorable characters and romance combined with elements of suspense. I give The Bridal Bouquet 5 long stemmed roses out of 5!”

Bookworm Lisa – Review

“As a reader, you know most of the things going on behind the scenes, just waiting for the characters to discover them. For me, it helped to cheer them on and hope that everyone is happy when it all comes out in the open. I really can’t say a lot more, because I like this book and am giving it a high recommendation.”

EskieMama Reads – The History of Flowers and Weddings
Today, weddings are as different and special as a bride’s vision. There are so many reasons a bride picks certain flowers; personal taste, sentiment, elegance, romance, to name a few. From full-blown, colorful bouquets to brides carrying a single stemmed rose to make a statement, the choice of flower for all wedding related events are vast. But where did the tradition of wedding flowers originate?

deal sharing aunt – Excerpt

Blowing out a relieved breath, she looked over her shoulder, glimpsing the most unusual pair of blue eyes she’d ever seen. Actually, blue wasn’t entirely correct. A hint of silver turned them an unusual shade of metallic gray. The man’s somber expression matched the concern she read there and his very handsome face garnered all her attention.

“Steady there.” His husky voice spoke close to her ear, sending a waterfall of shivers over her skin.

Christy’s Cozy Corners – Review

“I loved The Bridal Bouquet! Kady and Dylan are so much fun. I love the banter between them. There is also another romance that develops in the book, but I won’t spoil it for you. The plot is both romantic and suspenseful. If you are a fan of clean romance novels, you will surely love The Bridal Bouquet.”
Harlie’s Books – Review

“Oh my, a sweet contemporary that I read twice. Yes, twice. I loved, just loved this book. I’m a sucker for flowers so this book was right up my alley. . . . In the end, I loved the sweet romance of Kady and Dylan. It wasn’t rushed and had a few twists in it that I LOVED. Plus, the suspense element is on point for these characters.”

Hardcover Feedback – Review

“I loved reading The Bridal Bouquet! The characters were well written and I liked almost all of them, with the exception of the ones you aren’t supposed to like. . . . The romance between Kady and Dylan was so sweet! I loved watching them getting to know each other and see their feelings for each other grow.”
23 Review Street – Review

“The Bridal Bouquet is a sweet, romantic story that has handsome DEA agents, amazingly strong women and an wonderfully written story that will make you wish it wouldn’t end. I would recommend anyone who loves a unique love story and of course a wedding!”

Getting Your Read On – Review

“I loved Kady. There was something so human about her and her need to find acceptance and support from the people she loves. . . . This book was a clean romance with a touch of suspense and danger. It kept me interested from beginning to end.”

With Love for Books – Tips for Choosing a Florist for Your Wedding & Review
In The Bridal Bouquet, Kady Lawrence, co-owner of the Lavish Lily, works with brides to make the dreams of their big day come true. As any wedding professional, she advises her clients to research, then choose a florist who will carry out the vision. Flowers are an important statement at a wedding, and the bride and groom need to communicate their wishes in order for a florist to carry out the theme.

“The Bridal Bouquet is a quick and easy read and it’s very enjoyable. I think it’s an amazing read with a heartwarming theme.”

Katie’s Clean Book Collection – Review

“I love a good romance, but when there are other elements involved, it really draws me in. With a mystery and some suspense involved, this story really turns into more than the light, fluffy read, like I was expecting–there’s more meat to the book. . . . This is a great read for those who enjoy a clean, contemporary romance with some suspenseful threads woven in.”

Bloomfield of thoughts – Review

“The book is a clean romance novel and can be read as a stand-alone book as well. The book depicts the usual boy meets a girl and falls in love, the story though is a simple read for anyone who loves romance novels.”

Colorimetry – Top Wedding Flowers 
Many types of flowers are popular for weddings. Some brides know the exact flowers they want for their special day, others need a little help deciding. A professional florist, like Kady Lawrence from The Bridal Bouquet, work with brides to make their dreams come true.

Thoughts of a Blonde – Review

“There’s romance, there’s deceit, there’s family drama, there’s criminal activity … what more could we want?”

The Bridal BouquetThe Bridal Bouquet

(The Business of Weddings #3)
Tara Randel
Adult Contemporary Romance

Paperback & ebook, 384 pages

June 1st 2016 by Harlequin Heartwarming

Who will catch a lifetime of love?

Winning the annual wedding bouquet design competition may be the closest Kady Lawrence gets to the altar. She has to come in first or risk losing the shop that’s been in her family for generations. Her main competition is Jasmine Matthews. But it’s Jasmine’s son who’s caught Kady’s attention. 

Kady has no inkling Dylan’s a DEA agent on a case in Cypress Pointe, and Dylan wants to keep it that way…until Kady’s targeted. Determined to keep her safe, Dylan risks a lot more than blowing his cover…he risks losing Kady forever.

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Other Books in the Series
Magnolia BrideMagnolia Bride
(The Business of Weddings #1)
Tara Randel
Adult Contemporary Romance
Paperback & ebook, 209 pages
July 1st 2014 by Harlequin Heartwarming
Married for a day, in love for life 
Nealy Grainger knew that returning to Cypress Pointe meant an inevitable encounter with her teenage crush, and momentary husband, Dane Peterson. She could handle it. She wasn’t the wounded girl who’d left Cypress Pointe years ago, heartbroken and furious when Dane had annulled their marriage the day after they’d eloped. 
Now one of L.A.’s most in-demand celebrity event planners, Nealy’s only come back for a vacation and to help with her sister’s wedding—not for a reunion with her long-lost love. But the more their paths cross, the more the sparks fly! Maybe their connection isn’t over just yet….,

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Honeysuckle Bride

Honeysuckle Bride

(The Business of Weddings #2)
Tara Randel
Adult Contemporary Romance
Paperback & ebook, 201 pages
December 1st 2014 by Harlequin Heartwarming

One part happiness. Two parts love.

Relocating to the coast of Florida after becoming guardian of her best friend’s twin daughters could be the best move LA celebrity chef Jenna Monroe ever made. This is her chance to create a stable, loving home—something she never had. But can she be the mother the girls need?

Wyatt Hamilton thinks she can. The rugged charter boat captain, who came home to Cypress Pointe still grieving the death of his son, has faith in her. But the feelings he awakens in Jenna both exhilarate and frighten her. Because Wyatt no longer believes in forever… Unless she can convince him otherwise.

Tara Randel is an award-winning, USA TODAY bestselling author of eleven novels. She is currently working on new stories for Harlequin Heartwarming, as well as books in a new series, Amish Inn Mysteries. Her next Heartwarming, part of The Business of Weddings series, will be released in June 2016. Visit Tara at Like her on Facebook at Tara Randel Books.

Tour Giveaway

ONE WINNER will receive a tote bag including the first three books in The Business of Weddings series (US only)
ONE WINNER will recieve a $25 Amazon eGift card (open internationally)
Ends June 24th
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Welcome to Realm Explorers!  In this weekly series, we visit a variety of unique worlds created by talented science fiction and fantasy authors.  Enjoy your travels!  And don’t forget to read to the bottom of the post to find out more about each author and see how to purchase the featured book. 

Author’s name:  B. Roman
Title of book and/or series:  The Moon Singer Trilogy, a YA/Kids Fantasy series, comprises three books: The Crystal Clipper, The War Chamber, and The Wind Rose.
Brief summary of the story:  
David Nickerson is a teenager trying to cope with a series of family crises:  his father’s unemployment, his deafness after a serious illness, his crippled sister’s mysterious disappearance, and the death of his mother.  David’s confused life takes on mystical qualities when he acquires three sacred artifacts that have extraordinary powers, and all are tied to the appearance of the enchanting sailing ship, Moon Singer, that transports him to astonishing dimensions of time and space.  The people David encounters in these other worlds all have a soul connection to him and their lives are destined to intertwine many times over. 
The power of music to heal, to transform, to create life – or destroy it – plays a major role in the trilogy.  When he must rescue a young princess with the gift of healing and immortality in her song, held prisoner in a palace tower, David believes he will also rescue his sister Sally. Strangely, too, David finds he can hear for the first time in years and is transformed into a young man who can “hear” what others cannot, and who can “see” what others deny.  Thus, his “disability” becomes his greatest gift. Using crystal power and his music knowledge David discovers the means to work through his own personal problems and create a better world for everyone he loves.
Brief description of the world or location you created for this story:  
Although David visits other worlds, past and future, the stories have a contemporary feel.  The real world location is David’s coastal home town of Port Avalon, where his family heritage is one of ship building and sailing; this is his anchor environment where the family drama and surprising miracles take place. 

Even though I’ve created fantasy locations for David’s adventures, we come to see that he is really experiencing a higher consciousness, but David doesn’t quite know where he is: Past? Present? Future?  Are they all one and the same?  Discovering the truth is part of David’s enlightenment.
The Crystal Clipper is the Fairy Tale adventure to The Island of Darkness which has the aura of a medieval era with all the inherent dangers for its inhabitants.  For example, the people are enslaved by the evil High Priestess Jaycina, and Princess Saliana is a prisoner in the Prism Palace tower and forced to sing to keep Jaycina immortal.
In The War ChamberDavid is transported to the island of Coronadus which experiences a limbo of sorts where there is no wind or electrical power following a catastrophic earthquake that separated the city from the mainland.  The citizens live a very simple life much like one would find in a commune, are very ecology minded, and mostly pacifists. But war looms!
The Wind Rose takes place mostly in Port Avalon where David is a music prodigy at a city college and uncovers a Machiavellian plot by a mad music professor to destroy his city and all of civilization.  But a solution evades David so he decides to return to the Island of Darkness which has become the Kingdom of Light again, a vastly beautiful and ethereal city of sophistication and soul evolution. Here, everything becomes clear for our hero.
You mentioned that the power of music plays a vital role in the stories and David becomes a music prodigy.  How and why is David’s character deaf?  
David was normal hearing for seven years before developing a serious illness.  During that time his mother taught him music, and subsequently sign language and lip reading.  In his young teens, David develops extraordinary powers in worlds he never knew existed, because of his deafness: this important aspect of his character allows me to demonstrate how David hears the voices of intuition and inspiration and finds his own unique strengths. Normal hearing people who meditate are always instructed to do so in a quiet, silent environment – “Be still, and know…” David learns how to use his natural silence – the “music of his soul” – to find answers to complicated, almost unsolvable problems and in doing so his “disability” becomes his greatest gift.
If we were to visit The Island of Darkness as tourists, what would you recommend that we see or do there?  
Well, you would be drawn to the Prism Palace, a shimmering vision amidst an otherwise dark and dense terrain.  At first glance, it appears to be a crystal of monolithic proportions.  It is deceptively transparent, with near-blinding refractions of light that obscure its interior from view.  You might also be fascinated by the Glass Volcano where sacrifices are made of people who have displeased Jaycina.  Instead of being thrown in the fire, an enormous flash of electrical energy surges between the lodestone and the victim’s breastplate.  He is literally magnetized and lifted high into the air, floating on the electrical current like a puppet on a string.  The lodestone is then pushed aside, cutting off the free-floating electrical current and the victim plunges helplessly into the depths of the volcano, screaming his life away.
The Prism Palace on the Island
            (art credit:  Crystal Wisdom Palace artwork used with permission by Ron Kurz, Ellen Laura, Mary Jean Valente)
What dangers should we avoid in The Prism Palace? 
You would want to avoid the Tower where the worshipped and feared Glass Snake abides.  And stay away from the palace Temple and the Altar of Initiation.  Using hypnotic suggestion, the High Priestess entices people to hand over their personal crystals containing their bio-codes – which contain their genetic maps and all their memories – and makes them her slave.  And don’t ever get lost in the Palace corridors or you will encounter a deceptive Labyrinth of Mirrors and “…your eyes will be unable to see what your heart knows is true.”
What types of weaponry or fighting styles are common in The War Chamber?  
Since the citizens of Coronadus put down their weapons and chose to be pacifists, when there is a disagreement they must appear before the War Council where battles are confined to theories and strategies.  The only weapon allowed is the agility of their mind and the degree of their debating skills.   The War Council, comprised of only women, decide who the better tactician is.  Why are only women on the Council? Because the people believe women are the creators of life – are peaceful and reasonable – and men, unfortunately, are the destroyers. 
What types of vehicles, animals, technology, etc. are used to travel in or to Coronadus?
Since the Great Destruction, all of the machinery – electronics, cars, appliances, light fixtures, etc. -lie dormant because there is no electricity to power them.  Cooking is done by solar and refrigeration is created by using insulated cooling bins placed underground.  As for the boats, which were very sophisticated with both sails and engines, not only is there no energy to propel them but no wind at all to lift the sails. So no one is able to travel to or from Coronadus, and it is a mystery how David and the Moon Singer arrived there. 
What role, if any, does magic or the supernatural play in the lives of people in all the books?  
Crystal power is the catalyst.  David has a collection of colorful crystals that he experiments with for fun and fascination, including a beautiful Rose Crystal which represents faith and unconditional love.  But things don’t begin to “magically” happen until he is given a unique Singer crystal, which is shaped like a small sailboat.  When David lays out a Star of David grid pattern of his gems, the Singer ignites the power of all of them in a kaleidoscopic fury. The majestic clipper ship Moon Singer appears – a breathtaking vessel made of pure crystal and gold, which transports David on all of his adventures.
Has anything in your actual life inspired the locations, cultures, etc. in your book?
I own a Singer crystal, shaped like a small sailboat, that inspired the Moon Singer trilogy’s first adventure, “The Crystal Clipper.” I found this unique crystal at a workshop (actually, it found me – which is what crystals are programmed to do). In pondering its energy, a story began to take shape and guided me through writing all of the adventures. Young David Nickerson came by his own Singer because it was meant for him; he is the one true owner of the Singer crystal which manifests into the Moon Singer ship which takes David on all of his adventures.  Because the sacred gem holds all of the secrets and knowledge of the universe, it is David’s vehicle to learn about life, courage, selflessness and unconditional love.
What is the significance of the Moon Singer that it should be made of crystal and gold?  
Centuries ago a cataclysmic event was prophesied and it was feared that all the great knowledge that had been acquired would be destroyed if it were recorded in books.  So, some very wise scholars programmed a large vein of crystals with all the knowledge of the Universe then rematerialized them into the earth.  They trusted, when the time was right, that the crystal would surface and be attracted by people who would use this wisdom well. Many years later, this vein was discovered by prophets who realized that the power of the crystal held the potential for greatness as well as the potential for evil.  So they broke up the vein and fashioned it into the three masts of the ship Moon Singer, which represent Love, Wisdom and Truth. The men set the ship adrift on a pre-programmed course to another dimension where she would be safe from unscrupulous men.  Before they did, however, they chiseled a bit of crystal from each mast and fashioned the chips into the Singer crystal. The Singer is the only crystal that can activate the Moon Singer’s many powers. 
What, if any, “hot-button” or controversial topics do you touch on in your book?
Occult subjects that were once looked upon as fringe or “out there” have become mainstream:  reincarnation, soul travel, extrasensory perception, clairaudience and clairvoyance, crystal power, communication with the dead and so forth.  I touch on all of these
What message do you hope your readers will take away from the stories?
I realize that teens today are attracted to pop culture that focuses on dark and violent themes, but I hope my stories will offer kids a balance, especially if they are just beginning to ponder metaphysical thoughts and concepts.  Of course, my goal is to give them an enjoyable, suspenseful, and uplifting reading experience.  I also hope that many adults will read the stories and find them thought-provoking and inspiring.
Author Autobiography:  
Since childhood, I’ve been torn between two worlds: writing and singing. It’s difficult to serve “two masters,” as they say, but I was compelled to do so. When I was not singing, I was writing; when I was not writing, I was singing. Now I do both. (While still working a day job!). I’ve learned that one creative expression nurtures the other. Much of my writing has a musical theme somewhere in the plot, or is the plot. Whether it’s in my non-fiction writing about the power of music itself, in picture books and stories and, of course, in writing music and lyrics for songs.

Where, and in what formats, can we purchase your books?
There are links to all of my books on my Creativia author page where readers can learn more about me and about the power of music and magical adventures  – then go to the Amazon link if they are interested in buying.
Where can readers connect with you online? 
Email:    [email protected]
Amazon author page: (US & UK)
Twitter:  @BMoonSinger1

I hope you all enjoyed the trip to the Kingdom of Light.  Questions about the world or the book?  Ask them in the comments and the author will get back to you!  

Click here to read other posts in the Realm Explorers series.

Please join us again next Monday for a trip to another world, in Realm Explorers Part XCXVI!
-Annie Douglass Lima
The Setting Thesaurus DuoIt is a writer’s job to draw readers into the fictional story so completely that they forget the real world. Our goal is to render them powerless, so despite the late hour, mountain of laundry, or workday ahead, they cannot give up the journey unfolding within the paper-crisp pages before them.

Strong, compelling writing comes down to the right words, in the right order. Sounds easy, but as all writers know, it is anything BUT. So how do we create this storytelling magic? How can we weave description in such a way that the fictional landscape becomes authentic and real—a mirror of the reader’s world in all the ways that count most?

 Well, there’s some good news on that front. Two new books have released this week that may change the description game for writers. The Urban Setting Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to City Spaces and The Rural Setting Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Personal and Natural Spaces look at the sights, smells, tastes, textures, and sounds a character might experience within 225 different contemporary settings. And this is only the start of what these books offer writers.

 In fact, swing by and check out this hidden entry from the Urban Setting Thesaurus: Police Car.
And there’s one more thing you might want to know more about….

Rock_The_Vault_WHW1Becca and Angela, authors of The Emotion Thesaurus, are celebrating their double release with a fun event going on from June 13-20th called ROCK THE VAULT.

At the heart of Writers Helping Writers is a tremendous vault, and these two ladies have been hoarding prizes of epic writerly proportions.

A safe full of prizes, ripe for the taking…if the writing community can work together to unlock it, of course.

Ready to do your part? Stop by Writers Helping Writers to find out more!  

Welcome to Realm Explorers!  In this weekly series, we visit a variety of unique worlds created by talented science fiction and fantasy authors.  Enjoy your travels!  And don’t forget to read to the bottom of the post to find out more about each author and see how to purchase the featured book. 

Author’s name: Krista Wagner

Title of book and/or series: The Gold

Brief summary of the story:
Ten-year-old Amanda is constantly teased and tormented in school. Her home life is less than satisfactory where her widower father, who is often away on business trips, leaves her in the care of her indifferent teenaged sister. Worse, not a day goes by when Amanda doesn’t miss her mom. TO escape reality, Amanda creates fantasy stories, but when she discovers a talking golden pebble, her imagined world turns into a new-fangled reality.

Brief description of the world or location you created for this story:
A woodland with forest animals that are friendly, a place touched by magic and weather that the surrounding world is unaffected by, and then the rural world that is invaded by the enchantment of the forest.

If we were to visit Sagle, Idaho as tourists, what would you recommend that we see or do there?
The forest. And the creek behind Amanda’s house.

What dangers should we avoid in Sagle?
Watch out for the bullies at school.

What types of vehicles, animals, technology, etc. are used to travel in or to Sagle?
Feet and the magic change of time.

What types of plants, animals, or sentient races might we encounter in Sagle that we don’t see on Earth?
Forest animals that look like regular animals but are as friendly as those Amanda creates in her stories.

What role, if any, does magic or the supernatural play in the lives of people in Sagle?  If there is magic, please give some examples of what it involves or how it’s used.
There is a talking pebble. And there are magical creatures. And then there is the sense of time that is distorted when the intrusive world becomes blurred by the too-real ‘normal’ world.

Tell us about any sports, games, or activities that are available for entertainment in Sagle.
1.      Frisbee
2.      Pogo Bounce Ball
3.      Drive-in Movie Theatre

Are the days of the week and months of the year the same in Sagle as on Earth? What holidays or special events are celebrated regularly there?
Yes. However, there are some points in time that are accelerated and some that are reversed.
All major US holidays are celebrated.

Is there a particular religion practiced in Sagle. Please describe what it involves.
Christianity. Believing in Jesus as one’s Savior and citing the Bible for words of wisdom.
Has anything in your actual life inspired the locations, cultures, etc. in your book?
My visits to my Aunt’s and Uncle’s house in Sagle.
Author Autobiography:
Krista Wagner graduated from National University with an MFA in Creative Writing. Her debut novelIntent, a spiritual dramatic thriller, was published in 2014. Her psychological thriller, Rian Field, released in 2016. The Gold, a middle-grade fantasy, was published in 2016. She has been an English Instructor since 2008. She enjoys suspenseful films, reading the Bible, and spending time with her family.
Where, and in what formats, can we purchase your book?  
Where can readers connect with you online?

I hope you all enjoyed the trip to Sagle.  Questions about the world or the book?  Ask them in the comments and the author will get back to you!  

Click here to read other posts in the Realm Explorers series.

Please join us again next Monday for a trip to another world, in Realm Explorers Part XCXV!
-Annie Douglass Lima
I’m excited to announce that the third book in the Keepers of the Wellsprings series, Call of Brindelier, is now available on Amazon! If you haven’t read the previous books yet, read on for a super-quick crash course.
When I started writing this series, I really wanted to tell a story that was rich with fantasy, but not overly dark or mired with war and violence. I wanted to show the light side of fantasy: the cheerful, magical, uplifting side which I always drink up whenever it emerges in a story, and which always seems to be so fleeting in fantasy tales. I wanted to tell a story that would capture the hearts of young and old alike. Don’t get me wrong, my books aren’t void of conflict and evil. They tell of uncomfortable moments. There is violence and wickedness, but it’s those moments in my stories which are the fleeting ones. In the pages of my books, you will find fairies, Mages, Paladins, Elves, Dreamwalkers, Princes and Princesses, and even dragons. You’ll travel through a world rich with magic and wonder.
In Call of Kythshire, you’ll learn all about Cerion, a seaside kingdom which has celebrated peace for over a century. You’ll meet His Majesty’s Elite, a guild that is the right hand adventuring team of King Tirnon Plethore, and you’ll join Azi Hammerfel, a young squire who has grown up within the guild’s halls, through disappointments and triumphs. By her side is Rian, her childhood friend, an Apprentice of the Mage Academy. You’ll meet Flit, a fairy from Kythshire, who is as tricky as any fairy you might imagine, but has a depth of character and a sense of purpose uncommon for a typical fairy. You’ll see her world unfold, and feel the evil threat of Sorcery that looms, waiting to destroy it. You’ll learn a little about the Wellsprings, but not too much, for their existence and workings are a well-protected secret. (Click here to read an excerpt from Call of Kythshire.)
In Call of Sunteri, you’ll meet the strong-willed slave boy, Tib, who makes his first appearance as he escapes from the grips of Sorcery in the desert continent of Sunteri. He has help crossing the vast oceans to reach Cerion, but he doesn’t realize it at first. A mysterious being speaks to his mind, controlling his thoughts and making suggestions to ensure his own survival. In the meantime, Azi has been given the task of escorting the Prince of Cerion and his wife-with-child to the lakeside Kordelya Castle as the prince faces suspicion and ridicule after the events of Call of Kythshire. But a darker force emerges from the Dreaming, whose wicked intent is to use any means necessary to escape its prison and claim the magic of the Wellsprings for his own. In this book, you’ll see the devastating effects of the overuse of magic, and what it does to the Wellsprings and the creatures who thrive around them. (Click here to read an excerpt from Call of Sunteri.)
In Call of Brindelier, a dark force looms, more powerful and destructive than any threat Azi and her guild have yet faced. You’ll follow Celli, a scrappy street fighter, as she is enticed into the grips of a powerful Sorcerer. You’ll watch Tib come into his own as he sneaks through the streets of Cerion, uncovering the darkness while also working on a mysterious project. You’ll follow Azi on a quest set by Princess Margary to find proof of Brindelier, a city in the clouds which is the key to all of the Wellsprings in the Known Lands. But Margy is not the only one interested in Brindelier. A dark force has been gathering, poised to claim it for their own. Control over the Wellsprings hangs in the balance. (Click here to read an excerpt from Call of Brindelier.)
This series is appropriate for all ages, but I recommend 13 and up due to some violent themes. There is no sex, swearing, or excessively graphic violence in the Keepers of the Wellsprings. Throughout the series, you’ll encounter daring sword fights, violent magical moments, and a few quick deaths.
Call of Brindelier, the third book in the Keepers of the Wellsprings series, is now available on Amazon.  This weekend, I’m offering book one of the series, Call of Kythshire, for free, and book two, Call of Sunteri, for just 99 cents. Click here to download your ebooks while they’re on sale!

Onward to Brindelier…
A selfish prince on trial for treason. A beloved princess hiding a talent for forbidden magic. The race between Dawn and Dusk to claim Brindelier, a hidden city in the clouds with a promise of ultimate control over the source of power in the Known Lands: The Wellsprings. 

Azi and Rian are back! The newly-betrothed couple once again find themselves drawn into the plots of fairy-kind, bestowed with gifts of new titles and strange, powerful abilities. A threat is revealed; one which Flitt insists is worse than anything they have yet faced. Is she referring to the gathering of Sorcerers who call themselves the Circle of Spires, or is a darker, more sinister force at play? Tib knows. He’s seen the might of the Dusk firsthand. 

The fates of Cerion, Kythshire, and all the Known Lands hang in the balance in the third installment of the Keepers of the Wellsprings series: Call of Brindelier.

I want to be annoyed by the magic. I want to hate the excess of it. There’s no reason for it except to show off. I can’t help but admit it, though. It’s kind of impressive.
When we reach the tower, the stone wall shifts and opens magically. Of course there aren’t any doors. Why would there be? Rian brushes his fingers along the stone as we go in. He’s really impressed. I bet he’s going to write it all down when this is over. Make a book of it for their ridiculous libraries.
Inside the tower, it’s dry and warm. The walls are adorned with colorful silks and tapestries. The circular entry is larger than I expected. It’s a little confusing. The energy is bright and overwhelming. It’s embedded in the stone. It pulses in the air. Power. Might. Majesty. Protection. Knowledge.
Otherwise, the place is dusty and full of cobwebs. Shelves and shelves of moldy books line the walls behind the coverings. Books and tubes and glass vials and stacked clay pots teeter and lean against each other. I sniff. Sea air. Must. Incense. Behind Rian, Shush blows out a wisp of fresh air that sends the white smoke swirling away.
“Master’s downstairs,” Loren says. His voice echoes up into the rafters and a passage opens up across the entryway. It glows with a merry orange light to welcome us.
The stairway down is lined with glass walls as thick as my arm. Loren takes this for granted. He jogs off down the steps without a glance, but Rian and I can’t help but stop and stare. Through the glass, a world stretches out before us. The depths of the ocean. The surf plunges above, bubbling and churning.
Waves scoop up the sandy seaweed bottom and push it down again. It’s like a field. A drifting, rhythmic meadow. Colorful fish swim past in schools of red, orange, and yellow. Creatures like I’ve never seen cling to bright pink and green stones. They wave long tendrils with the motion of the sea. Shells of every color catch the light of the spiral staircase which shines through the glass.
I’ve never seen anything like it. It’s simple. Pure. Beautiful. I had no idea there was a world like this under the ocean. I can’t tear my eyes away. I press my hand to the glass as a dolphin races past us, chasing a group of purple fish with long, flowing fins. It’s not just the sight of it that interests me. It’s the simplicity of it. There’s no magic out there. Not in the sense I’ve known it. It’s perfect all on its own.

About the Author
Missy Sheldrake is an author/illustrator who has been conjuring images of fairies in one form or another since she was very young. The wind in the trees and the rich scent of forest earth are her most treasured sources of inspiration, and on most mornings you will find her wandering the wooded paths, dreaming of the next adventure she hopes to put to the page.
Missy was born in Connecticut and attended Western Connecticut State University, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Art with a concentration in painting and illustration. Even then, in her free time, she was writing. She moved to Northern Virginia several years ago and lives there now, on the outskirts of Washington D.C., with her true love and their son. She published her first novel, Call of Kythshire, in March of 2015 and intends to keep writing as long as the fairies allow it.
Call of Kythshire (Book One):
Call of Sunteri (Book Two):
Call of Brindelier (Book Three):
Snowberry Blossom (Perma-free holiday short story):


Welcome to Realm Explorers!  In this weekly series, we visit a variety of unique worlds created by talented science fiction and fantasy authors.  Enjoy your travels!  And don’t forget to read to the bottom of the post to find out more about each author and see how to purchase the featured book. 

Author’s name: Ciella Naden
Title of book and/or series: Faowyn
Brief summary of the story:
Fourteen-year-old Evely takes a nature walk in the forest to collect fern leaves for her biology class. But what she discovers there will question how she sees nature.
Evely enters another world full of giant talking animals. This is Faowyn’s world…where foxes are royal guardians who live to protect humans. But from what?
If we were to visit The Shinrin Kingdom as tourists, what would you recommend that we see or do there?
You definitely have to visit Aloof, the gigantic owl. In fact, just let him be your tour guide. Also, make sure you visit Rose’s garden. You’ll leave mind-blown.
What dangers should we avoid in The Shinrin Kingdom?
Just across the field is an “enter at your own risk” place because the evil, blood-sucking Chishio roam there, and they hunt humans.
Is there a distinct or unusual type of food or meal that we might be served in The Shinrin Kingdom?
If you arrive in time for breakfast, you’re likely to be served duck eggs and turkey bacon. Also, Rose likes to put herbs in your drink, so watch out.
What types of vehicles, animals, technology, etc. are used to travel in or to The Shinrin Kingdom?
No transportation is needed; you just sort of stumble upon it if you’re out walking in the forest.
What types of plants, animals, or sentient races might we encounter in The Shinrin Kingdom that we don’t see on Earth?
Most of the animals in The Shinrin Kingdom will look familiar, but they are all much bigger than they are on Earth. They walk on their hind legs, and they talk! The Chishio are wolf-like creatures, but they are far viler than Earth wolves.
What role, if any, does magic or the supernatural play in the lives of people in The Shinrin Kingdom?  If there is magic, please give some examples of what it involves or how it’s used.
Faowyn, his mother, and his sisters all have powers in which they can control certain elements. Faowyn can make balls of fire in his paws and throw them when needed. Faowyn’s mother can turn things to ice or make snow. There are more cool things to learn in the story.
Are the days of the week and months of the year the same in The Shinrin Kingdom as on Earth?
The time in The Shinrin Kingdom does not pass nearly as quickly as it does on Earth.
Who is in charge there at the moment, and what kind of leader is he/she?
The Shinrin Kingdom is ruled by Faowyn’s mother and father, King Trestor and Queen Icelia. The Chishio Kingdom is ruled by the leader of the pack, Master Ashton. 
Author Autobiography:
Ciella Naden is the 16-year-old daughter of Author Cynthia P. Willow. She began her writing career with a home-school assignment when she was only thirteen years old. Cat Tales and Whiskers was published the following year. Ciella has now published her second book Faowyn.
Ciella began acting at the local theatre at age 16, and is currently taking acting classes. She runs her own crocheting business to pay for acting expenses. She LOVES foxes and hopes to have her own one day. She enjoys playing digital rhythm games, listening to music, watching Anime, swinging, and singing.
Ciella’s dream is to one day act in television and movie roles. She admires Nat Wolff, Freddie Highmore, and Helena Bonham Carter.
Where, and in what formats, can we purchase your book(s)?  Please include links.
Where can readers connect with you online? 
Instagram: ciella_naden99
YouTube: Faowyn book trailer:
Cat Tales and Whiskers book trailer:
I hope you all enjoyed the trip to the Shinrin Kingdom.  Questions about the world or the book?  Ask them in the comments and the author will get back to you!  

Click here to read other posts in the Realm Explorers series.

Please join us again next Monday for a trip to another world, in Realm Explorers Part XCXIV!
-Annie Douglass Lima
One day while I was busy mindlessly entering data into the computer at work, I put on my head phones and started listening to the book. I was hooked from the first few sentences. In fact, I stayed up late when I got home (even though I had to get up early the next morning) to finish the book.” -Amazon Reviewer

With solid craft and poignant world building, Aubrey Hansen has outlined a future both horrifying and realistic. I appreciated Hansen’s character building skills.” -Amazon Reviewer
I loved this book! I didn’t realize it was a short novella, and I wished it would have been longer.” -Goodreads Reviewer
“The story was fascinating. I wasn’t really sure what to expect, but everything came together in the end and it made sense.” -Goodreads Reviewer


Aubrey is offering three paperback copies of her book, Red Rain. This book will have the new cover on it. And the grand prize offering will also have the paperback of Faith Blum’s book, Heaven’s Jubilee, a Christian futuristic collection of short stories. To enter the giveaway, please fill out this Google form (you do not need a Google account to enter). The only required entries are your name and email address, but the more you do, the more chances you have to win.


<!–[if gte mso 9]>
“Daddy, you’re home early,” I declared as I walked in the

He pushed his computer away from him. “I’ve been home almost
all day. I had a special meeting at the lab—that’s it.”

I sat down next to him at the table. “They had ‘special
meetings’ today at school, too.”

He noted my frown. “What is it, Phil?”

He stared at me quietly while I told him about Mrs. Nolan.

When I was done, he shook his head. “I’m sorry, Phil.”

“I love you, Daddy.”

“My meeting wasn’t much more pleasant. I was told that I’ve
received a commission to work on a special project—requested by name, they tell

I tipped my head. It sounded like good news.

Daddy got up and started to pace.

It wasn’t good news.

“The assignment… is for a base on Mars.”

I wasn’t sure what to make of that.

“And you would not be permitted to come with me.”

I looked up at his face. He was already looking at me.

“The commander says. ‘Regulations.’ The assignment is for
me, not you.”

“Where… would I go?”

“Nowhere.” Daddy gripped his arms behind his back. “I will
not go, I will not take the commission. Philadelphia, I will not leave you.” He
drew a breath and added, “Not if I have a choice.”

I looked away. My eyes fell on the picture frame hanging on
the wall across the room. I got up and walked over to it. The image displayed a
picture of Daddy and I; Daddy usually left that one up, because it didn’t hurt
to look at it.

I waved my hand in front of the sensor several times. The
digital pictures scrolled slowly, dancing through a time lapse. I stopped when
I reached the picture I was looking for.

I stepped away, crossed my arms behind my back, and regarded
it. In the plain metal frame sat a young man, not quite 19. His thick dark hair
stuck up in the front, and his lab coat was pulled around his shoulders. He
stared calmly at the camera, not smiling—the smile was in his eyes. I knew; I
had grown up with my older brother’s eyes smiling on me.

“They sent Ephesus to Mars,” I said aloud.

“Yes,” my father replied.

“They didn’t give him a choice.”


I stared hard at the image of my brother’s face, wishing the
pixels could move. Finally I finished my thought.

“And he never came back.”

It was several minutes before my father replied. “No,” he
said finally. And again, “No, he didn’t.”

Tour Schedule

June 2
Bookish Orchestrations-Tour Introduction and Excerpt
Laurel’s Leaves-Author Interview
June 3
Gabriellyn-Excerpt and Author Interview
Joyful Peacock-Author Interview
June 4
Another OtherWorld-Character Interview with Philadelphia
June 5
Mary’s Writing World-Book Spotlight
Rachel Rossano’s Words-Excerpt and Author Interview
June 6
Tale Weaver-Author Interview
June 7
BookishOrchestrations-Tour Wrap-up and Giveaway Announcement