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: Laura VanArendonk Baugh
Title of book and/or series: The Songweaver’s Vow
Brief summary of the story:
When Euthalia’s father trades her to Viking raiders, her best hope is to be made a wife instead of a slave. She gets her wish — sort of — when she is sacrificed as a bride to a god.
Her inhuman husband seems kind, but he visits only in the dark of night and will not allow her to look upon him. By day Euthalia becomes known as a storyteller, spinning ancient Greek tales to entertain Asgard’s gods and monsters.
When one of her stories precipitates a god’s murder and horrific retribution, Euthalia discovers there is a monster in her bed as well. Alone in a hostile Asgard, Euthalia must ally with a spiteful goddess to sway Odin himself before bloody tragedy opens Ragnarok, the prophesied end of the world.
Brief description of the world or location you created for this story:
Asgard, per Norse mythology, is a world alongside our own Midgard (“middle earth”), invisibly connected and yet a physical place itself. It is named for the Æsir, the gods who live there. I based this Asgard heavily on 9th century Denmark.
If we were to visit Asgard as tourists, what would you recommend that we see or do there?
Are you the partying or clubbing types? You can always find a roaring party or a good brawl at Valhöll, the Hall of the Slain where Odin collects the best warriors to fight when Ragnarok comes. (That’s the end of the world, when the Jötnar and monsters destroy everything in a great battle against the Æsir.)
If you’re seeking a less adventurous meal, you might try Sessrúmnir or Folkvang, halls kept by the goddess Freyja. Of course, all of these are open primarily to dead humans, so there’s not much of a steady tourist industry.
What dangers should we avoid in Asgard?
There are many Jötnar from Jötunnheim, the land of the devourers. (These may be called giants in other guide books, but that’s a poor translation. They are the beings which tear apart, just as the Æsir hold together.) But they are generally on good behavior while visiting Asgard. Meeting them on other terms, however, is not advised for the casual tourist, and the management cannot be held responsible for accidents. Or intentional murders.
There are many monsters in and around Asgard as well. Fenrir is an enormous wolf, intelligent and well-spoken and suspicious. Jörmungandr is a sea serpent large enough to encompass the Midgard ocean and bite his own tail. (You can see an artist’s suggestion on our guide book cover.)
Is there a distinct or unusual type of food or meal that we might be served in Asgard?
The most notable food in Asgard is the epli, or fruits and berries, belonging to the goddess Idun and shared with the rest of the Æsir and Vanir. You are not likely to be served any, however, as they are for sustaining immortality. But while you’re here, do try the mead, the sweetest and strongest you’re likely to find in any of the many worlds.
What types of weaponry or fighting styles are common in Asgard?
Oh, we have all kinds! Axes and hammers are most common; even in your Midgard you have surely heard of Thor’s famous hammer Mjöllnir, which always hits its mark and always returns to him. The wealthier might also have swords, keen cutting blades for breaking shields and skulls.
We fight in groups, with powerful shield walls to link and guard us, and singly, man to man – or woman. And of course we’re happy to fight without any weapons at all, too! A warrior does not surrender merely for the lack of a weapon – a warrior is a weapon.
What types of vehicles, animals, technology, etc. are used to travel in or to Asgard?
Most humans arrive in Asgard by dying. Many of our tourists prefer an alternate method of travel, so the Bifröst is another popular choice. That’s the glimmering rainbow portal one sometimes sees in the sky. (Mind the fire.)
Once in Asgard, you can see all kinds of transportation. Odin has an eight-legged horse, Sleipnir. Thor has a two-wheeled cart pulled by two powerful goats. Freyr rides an enormous golden boar with glowing bristles, or he has the beautiful ship Skíðblaðnir which can fold into a pouch to carry. Freyja’s cart is pulled by two cats, and that’s not really as funny as you might at first think.
What types of plants, animals, or sentient races might we encounter in Asgard that we don’t see on Earth?
Most of the plants and animals you’ll encounter will be recognizable, but significantly different in some way. Yggdrasill, the World Tree which holds all the worlds in its branches, is an ash like you might see at home in Midgard. Ratatoskr is a common red squirrel. Fenrir is a wolf, even if he’s the size of your turf house back home. Jörmungandr is a snake, just… oversized enough to fill the sea.
What role, if any, does magic or the supernatural play in the lives of people in Asgard?
Magic is part of Asgard, from the epli which sustain the Æsir to the Bifröst which links Asgard to the other worlds, but we are careful with how we use it. Seiðr is a form of weaving magic practiced traditionally by women, very powerful, but we once warred over it and we fear those who use it too much.
Tell us about any sports, games, or activities that are available for entertainment in Asgard.
Oh, we have the best games! You can throw rocks or spears at Baldr (he’s immortal and no material thing can hurt him), you can play tafl or table games, you can drink and fight each other and then drink some more…. We also have splendid hunting and fishing.
Are the days of the week and months of the year the same in Asgard as on Earth? What holidays or special events are celebrated regularly there?
Our days of the week will be very familiar to you in Midgard! We have Tyr’s day, and Woden’s day*, and Thor’s day, and Frigga’s day, and then the weekend and Monday again. (Woden is what the Western lands of Midgard call Odin. They are bad at spelling. You should probably ransack them.)
And of course we have the same three seasons you do, spring, summer, and winter.* We celebrate three major seasonal festivals, Vetrnætr (“winter nights”), Jól in midwinter, and Sumarmál (“summer time”).
*Guide’s addendum: They do not mark autumn as a season. Winter begins in mid-October, celebrated with the Vetrnætr.
Is there a particular religion practiced in Asgard?  Please describe what it involves.
These are the gods themselves. They give little thought to what that entails, including their own responsibilities. (Sorry, but it’s true.)
What is the political or government structure in Asgard?  Who is in charge there at the moment, and what kind of leader is he/she?
Odin is the chief and Allfather. He sits at the end of his Valhöll and watches, never eating with the others, rarely speaking. But he knows things. He knows.
Are there any other unique cultural practices that we should be aware of if we visit Asgard?
You will find thralls (slaves) serving the Æsir and einherjar in the halls and farms. Don’t worry too much about them; they were generally killed in Midgard and sent to work here.
You’ll find that storytelling is an important part of both history and entertainment here. If you get the chance to listen to Bragi, definitely take it. He is a literal god of poetry.
Has anything in your actual life inspired the locations, cultures, etc. in your book?
Guide’s note: I visited Denmark to research Viking-era history, customs, culture, and ninth-century villages and life. I dragged my poor husband to so many historical sites and recreated villages and museums, and he waited so patiently for Legoland. What a trooper.
Author biography:
Laura VanArendonk Baugh overcame the dubious challenge of having been born without teeth or developed motor skills to become an award-winning writer of speculative fiction, mystery, and non-fiction. Her works have earned numerous accolades, including 3-star ratings (the highest possible) on Tangent’s “Recommended Reading” list. Laura speaks professionally on a variety of topics throughout the year, including writing, fan costuming, and her day job as a professional animal trainer and behavior consultant. Find her at www.LauraVanArendonkBaugh.com.
Where, and in what formats, can we purchase your book(s)?  Please include links.
The Songweaver’s Vow is available in ebook and paperback at Amazon and anywhere books are sold. An audiobook is planned.
Where can readers connect with you online? 
My website has a lot of background information about my research and the mythology behind the story, and discussion and comments are always welcome over at my Facebook page. I also tweet!

Want to participate in a live, online book club discussion of The Songweaver’s Vow? Sign up for details (and you’ll get a free story, too!).

I hope you all enjoyed the trip to Asgard.  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 next week’s edition of Realm Explorers!
-Annie Douglass Lima

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Book Tour Grand Finale for
The SEAL’s Return
By Patricia Potter
We hope you enjoyed the tour! If you missed any of the stops, go back and check them out…

Launch – Author Interview

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

That they respect the military and reach out with a helping hand and understanding heart. And that love can often conquer even the greatest obstacles.

Nicole’s Book Musings – Welcome to Covenant Falls!

Covenant Falls is a very special town in Colorado. It has become a healing place for returning vets with the assistance of rescue animals and a quirky town population.

Three former vets – a wounded ex-Army Ranger, an Army chopper pilot and an Army battlefield surgical nurse – have found belonging, a home. . . and love there.

The newest residents are former Navy Seal Jubal Pierce and Dr. Lisa Redding in the February release of “The SEAL’s Return.” And their romance is the most troubled-filled of all.

With Love for Books – Review

“Patricia Potter writes about troubled pasts in an emphatic way. I could easily understand the emotions of her main characters. What I loved about The SEAL’s Return the most is the way she writes about animals. . . . The SEAL’s Return is a captivating story about both people and animals and I enjoyed reading it very much.”

Colorimetry – Excerpt

Jubal Pierce plucked the letter he’d received yesterday from the trash can. He’d read it, then discarded it. This time he reread it slowly and considered the proposal.

Hearts & Scribbles – Building a Fictional Town

When I started writing “A Soldier’s Promise,” the first in my Home to Covenant Falls series, I knew I had a problem. All my other books were set in an actual place: Atlanta that I knew well, Memphis that I knew nearly as well, Boston that I had visited many times. But now I was writing a book in which a small town is a character in the book. I wanted it to be a little quirky, and quite obviously I couldn’t use a real one where everyone knows everyone. The only solution was to build my own town.

Thoughts of a Blonde – Review

“Sometimes what you are not looking for, is just what you need most in the world! Patricia Potter takes us on an emotional journey of healing as we head back to Covenant Falls, Colorado to see the latest veteran to plan on just passing through and end up finding more than he was even looking for!”

The Silver Dagger Scriptorium – Creating the Perfect Couple

I like to create the perfect couple by creating the two people who are decidedly imperfect for each other.

When I start a book, I usually have a hero – or heroine – in mind and then visualize the polar opposite. My new book is a perfect example. I hope I have readers wonder how these two can ever resolve their differences.

Falling Leaves – Excerpt

She looked up to see two men enter Maude’s. One was Eve’s husband. The other man caused her breath to catch in her throat.

Lisa didn’t know why, exactly. It wasn’t because he was cover-model handsome. But there was something about him that was strikingly different.

EskieMama & Dragon Lady Reads – Researching a Book

One of my favorite aspects of writing is research. I have endless curiosity about nearly everything and everyone. I truly enjoy it when writing takes me to new places.

In The SEAL’s Return, I went on many journeys through Google. The first, of course, was about SEALs, the training they take, the type of missions they undertake, the various ranks, etc.

Angels With Attitude Book Reviews – Review

“I really enjoyed this story especially about a wounded hero who put his own suffering aside to help another.How could you not fall in love with a fellow like that?It really reminds you there is Hope and Joy for all of us within our reach.An enjoyable story about love and sacrifice that tugged at the readers emotions.”

Babs Book Bistro – Review

“The characters are ones you want to get to know and see good things happen to. I love how the author has Lisa as a caring and not a judgmental person. She cares a great deal for people. Jubal is always there for Gordon when he really needs someone. I like how everyone interacts and makes the story a real page turner.”

Cafinated Reads – Review

“This is a story of hope, belonging and finding that one true love that will heal all wounds, past and present. I will be going back and grabbing up books 1-3 if they are all as amazing as this book! Jubal’s character stole my heart instantly. Lisa’s character was chiseled perfectly, in my opinion. Definitely a keeper, if you ask me! This book is deserving of 4.5 stars and the highest “hats off” praises you can give!”

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway below, if you haven’t already…
The SEAL’s Return
(Home to Covenant Falls #4)
by Patricia Potter
Contemporary Romance

Paperback & ebook, 384 pages
February 1st 2017 by Harlequin Superromance

This is the home he never expected…

With a terrifying ordeal behind him, former navy SEAL Jubal Pierce was supposed to stay in Covenant Falls, Colorado, for only a day or two. That’s it. He’s not prepared to put down roots here—no matter how intriguing the town’s new doctor happens to be. Not to mention Dr. Lisa Redding’s teen brother is on a troubled path that’s all too familiar. Suddenly Jubal finds himself entangled in the community and with deep, unfamiliar feelings for Lisa. But maybe a little detour is just what a warrior needs to find his true purpose…and true love.

GoodreadsAmazonBarnes & NobleHarlequin

Other Books in the Series


About the Author

Patricia Potter is the USA Today Bestselling Author of more than fifty books. She has received numerous writing awards, including RT Storyteller of the Year, its Career Achievement Award for Western Historical Romance and its Best Hero of the Year Award. She is a seven-time RITA finalist and three-time Maggie Award winner. She has served as president of Romance Writers of America. The SEAL’s Return is her fourteenth book for Harlequin.
Prior to writing fiction, she was a reporter for the Atlanta Journal and president of a public relations firm.


Tour Giveaway

– 1 winner will win a $25 Amazon eGift Card
– 3 winners will win an ebook of THE SOLDIER’S PROMISE (book 1 in the Home to Covenant Falls series)
– Open internationally
– Ends February 14th

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Read this fun mystery as a stand-alone, or start with book #1
 The Mystery Of Hollow Inn 
for only .99!
(all of my books are free with Kindle Unlimited!)
What could be better than hiking, swimming, and horseback riding? Having a mystery to solve, of course! 

When Sam and Ally go off to summer camp together, they discover the secrets of Camp Whispering Pines. Set in the beautiful, rugged mountains of the Pacific Northwest, the clues are slowly revealed and it’s up to the two girls to figure it out. 

New friendships are formed, while at the same time enemies lurk nearby. The closer they get to uncovering the truth behind the camp, the further they are pushed into danger and deceit. Can Sam and Alley put all of the pieces together before it’s too late? Follow them on another thrilling tale filled with excitement and adventure, along misty, high mountain trails, and deep ravines, where the answers wait to be found!
This fun middle grade series is being called a modern-day Nancy Drew. It will take you back to your Trixie Beldon days, but are in current social settings with real issues relevant to today’s teens and pre-teens. They’re clean, wholesome stories that you and your kids will devour! 

Check out the whole series

Tara Ellis, an Amazon best selling author, lives in a small, rural town in Washington State set in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. She enjoys the quiet lifestyle with her two kids and several dogs. Tara was a firefighter/EMT, and worked in the medical field for many years, before committing herself to writing young adult and middle grade novels full-time. 

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And join her NEWSLETTER
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:

Anna del C. Dye
Title of book and/or series:
A Golden Princess. Book three in A Royal Romance Series
Brief summary of the story:
“Not Trolls strength or wizard’s spell will keep me away from you”

Small for her age, Princess Nyala is determined to be noticed and someday rule with fairness and valor in Kaloma. All changes when she looks upon the stars and they predict her accident. After she awakens to a broken body, her father takes to his goblet and she steps into power in her kingdom at sixteen.

Her father said that no man would choose a half-broken princess. Is that how Prince Nicolao sees her after the accident? Her heart is unsure and out of fear she keeps him away to avoid a broken heart.

As soon the other kingdoms in the land determine the predicament of the Royal House of Kaloma, they too will prey on her vulnerability to steal her kingdom. She will have to confront new foes or lose it all.
Brief description of the world or location you created for this story:
A Golden Princess is loosely based in Brazil. The kingdom’s name is Kaloma.
If we were to visit Kaloma as tourists, what would you recommend that we see or do there?
Kaloma has very artistic people and you will find groups of dancers in many places throughout their cities.
The market place is full of delicious food, colorful materials, trinkets and animals of all kinds.  
What dangers should we avoid in Kaloma?
Kaloma’s kingdom is surrounded by many jungles. You should go only with a reputable guide and then follow all their suggestions or you may never return.
Is there a distinct or unusual type of food or meal that we might be served in Kaloma?
Yes, but that all depends on from where are you from. They have delicious tropical fruits, but if you are from an island they may not be that new to you. They have banana plantations too, and many different kinds of bananas and also they have bounteous game.
“It pays to hold your tongue”

What types of weaponry or fighting styles are common in Kaloma?

They used machetes, swords and even charms to keep the peace. Though they are not afraid of knives and know how to use them well.
What types of vehicles, animals, technology, etc. are used to travel in or to Kaloma?
They travel by horse, foot and wagons. They also use a bed, carried on the shoulders of four strong men.
What role, if any, does magic or the supernatural play in the lives of people in Kaloma?  If there is magic, please give some examples of what it involves or how it’s used.
In the neighboring kingdom of Burahm, they have astrologers. One read from the stars and foretold the Golden Princess’ accident, the death of her father and his sickness.
Tell us about any sports, games, or activities that are available for entertainment in Kaloma.
They know and play a game they called birdy, which is a racket game of today. They also play the flat ball game, which is a hockey kind of game.
“What a way to go to war”

Are the days of the week and months of the year the same in Kaloma as on Earth? What holidays or special events are celebrated regularly there?

Yes, they have four seasons. They celebrate the harvest festival every year in autumn. The girls don flower circlets in their hair and dance dressed in colorful apparel. They hold a tasting contest among the ale brewers, in the region during the festival.
Is there a particular religion practiced in Kaloma?  Please describe what it involves.
They have priests but religion is not mentioned much in the story.
What is the political or government structure in Kaloma?  Who is in charge there at the moment, and what kind of leader is he/she?
Like many kingdom in this era, Kaloma has a Royal representative at it head. Right now, the throne is occupied by Princess Nyala.
The princess had to pass through quite a lot to be trusted and respected by her people after the accident that left her a half-broken body. Now peace and prosperity is the result of her ultimate sacrifice.
Are there any other unique cultural practices that we should be aware of if we visit Kaloma?
It is said that if a single man enters the room of a single woman at night both will be punished, even put to death.
Has anything in your actual life inspired the locations, cultures, etc. in your book?
Yes, Princess Nyala’s personality and life’s tests are similar to mine. On the other hand, this story came to me as I watched a young man made of gold. His golden/brown hair, eyes and skin were stunning and I wondered how a golden princess would do for a character. The young man was actually from Brazil. That is how A Golden Princess came to be loosely based on that country.

Author Autobiography:
Anna del C. Dye was born in Valparaiso, Chile amongst some of the world’s most famous beaches. She grew up the middle, after her twin, Elena. Her mother died when she was six, but Anna was lucky enough to find a new mother in her husband’s mother whom she loves dearly. Anna accredits her mother-in-law with teaching her many things in life.

After meeting Rodney, a native of Idaho, in her hometown, Anna traveled to Utah on Christmas Eve and married him two weeks later. An article about their love story, Why Me? was published in spring 2010 by Covenant in the book Angels Round About. Anna and Rodney reside in Taylorsville, Utah and are the parents of three princes and a princess.
Early on in her life, Anna showed an affinity for sewing and took classes that rewarded her with the opportunities of doing costuming for the cast of four musicals, and a movie, which she enjoyed immensely. She is in charge of the costumes for the Elf Court in Utah’s own Fantasy Con. She is fluent in both English and Spanish.

Anna is an accomplished, multi-award winning author. She received the Editor’s Choice Award from the International Library of Poetry. Second place for the first page of A Kingdom by the Sea. Bronze medal for Elfs in a Conquered Realm.  Her short story entitled Amerine—Fairy Princess won an award in the Oquirrh Writers contest and was published by Kalkion Magazine. Her article, A New American Mother, was published by Desert Saints Magazine. Other articles about family and relationships have been published frequently in the MOMS CLUB® of Salt Lake Valley-West.

She is the author of The Silent Warrior Trilogy and four other books in her Elf Series. Anna has also published an electronic book for sixth-graders name Emerine’s Nightmare. From her new A Royal Romance Series, A Golden Princess is the stand alone book three of this series.

Anna holds a yearly Book Drive in her community and has given more that 250 books to 6 different Elementary Schools and another 1000 to 3 different Senior Centers in Utah.
Where, and in what formats, can we purchase your books? 
My books are in kobo with produce several formats
Where can readers connect with you online?

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–> https://www.amazon.com/Anna-del-C.-Dye/e/B002BLY7D2/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1486504918&sr=8-1-fkmr0

I hope you all enjoyed the trip to Kaloma.  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 next week’s edition of Realm Explorers!
-Annie Douglass Lima
On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Book Tour Grand Finale for
Under Gemini
By Linda Hope Lee

We hope you enjoyed the tour! If you missed any of the stops, go back and check them out…

Launch – Note from the Author

Welcome to my Prism Book Tour for Under Gemini, a Crimson Rose novel published by The Wild Rose Press. Gemini is a fictional island in the San Juans, an archipelago between Washington State and British Columbia. I’ve long thought the islands would be a good setting for a mystery and finally an idea came to mind.

Wishful Endings – Excerpt

He turned in her direction, and their gazes met.
She offered the hint of a smile and a brief nod. He nodded and smiled, too, and then they both looked away. Meg pursed her lips and tapped her foot, wishing her contact from Gemini would arrive.

fundinmental – Excerpt

The man waiting stepped forward. “I am. I’m Eric Richards.”
“I’m going there, too,” Meg said. “Megan Evans.”
“Jones, here to pick ya up. Boat’s at the marina.” He thumbed over his shoulder to the docks. “Here, lemme take that.” He nodded at Meg’s suitcase and held out his hand.

Katie’s Clean Book Collection – Excerpt

Working together. Meg’s shoulder’s tightened.
She’d counted on having the workplace to herself. Now she’d have to share it with Eric Richards. How could she do her investigating with him around? Eric’s frown told her he didn’t like the situation any better than she did.

Paulette’s Papers – Excerpt

He glanced at Megan Evans sitting in the back of the boat. In her early thirties, she had thick, dark brown hair drawn into a ponytail. Large brown eyes and a softly rounded chin gave her a vulnerable look. An air of sadness surrounded her, too. Something bad had happened, and not long ago.

Mel’s Shelves – Excerpt

Meg followed Jones and Eric along the dock. Just before stepping onto the shore, she felt her heart skip a beat. Once she set foot on land, there’d be no going back. For better or worse, at least for the duration of her employment, she’d be stuck here on Gemini Island.

Becky on Books – Excerpt

Meg followed Eric and Jones up a stone walkway lined with ferns to large double doors carved with Indian designs. Jones pushed open one door, and they stepped into a spacious, sky-lighted entry….

Rockin’ Book Reviews – Review

“This was an enjoyable book. I liked the suspense throughout the story. It was good to capture and hold one’s attention. . . . I would recommend this book to other readers.”

The Silver Dagger Scriptorium – Excerpt

. . . They reached the guest cottages, six in all, with three on either side of the road….Wolf House, Laureen had called Meg’s cottage. Looking up at her totem, Meg saw where the name came from. The carving of a wolf’s head topped the pole. Not even the bright sunlight beaming on him could dispel the menacing eyes and razor-edged teeth. She could almost hear him growl and snarl. Was he supposed to scare her? Or protect her? Meg wasn’t sure which.

Zerina Blossom’s Books – Excerpt

Clutching a small metal box, Eric paced his cottage, extending his hand in front. As he approached the phone on the counter between the kitchen and living room, he saw one of the lights on the device blink. Yep, his good ol’ bug buster picked ‘em up every time. He set down the box, unscrewed the phone’s speaker, and studied the insides. Pretty sophisticated. Carl Miller—or whoever installed the bug—was up on the latest technology. Leaving the bug in place, he put the speaker back together.

Nicole’s Book Musings – Excerpt

Nick Hinton was a former FBI agent Eric met in training at Quantico. . . . He and Eric often did favors for each other. “Can you run a check on someone for me?”
“Sure. What ya got?”
Eric scanned the nearby woods for signs someone might be nearby. Except for the soft breeze sighing through the trees, all was quiet. “Her name is Megan Evans.”

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway below, if you haven’t already…

Under Gemini
by Linda Hope Lee

Adult Romantic Suspense
Paperback & ebook, 234 Pages
February 8th 2017 by The Wild Rose Press, Inc.

Reeling from the deaths of her ex-husband and their nine-year-old daughter, Meg Evans suspects foul play in the mysterious auto accident. Clues lead her to Gemini Island, where she goes undercover cataloging Northwest Indian artifacts while conducting her own investigation. She doesn’t count on having to work with the enigmatic and handsome Eric Richards.

Artifact expert Eric has hidden reasons for coming to Gemini, and he doesn’t relish working with anyone who might thwart his search for answers. Will they keep their true identities and their missions hidden? Or can they learn to trust each other and together discover Gemini’s terrible secret?

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About the Author

Linda Hope Lee

Linda Hope Lee writes contemporary romance, romantic suspense, and mysteries. She enjoys traveling especially to small towns in search of story ideas. She’s also an artist, specializing in watercolor, pen and ink, and colored pencil. Photography provides inspiration for both her writing and her art. She lives in the Pacific Northwest, where many of her stories are set.


Tour Giveaway

– 1 winner will win a $50 Amazon eGift Card and a copy of UNDER GEMINI (ebook if international, print if US)
– 3 winners will win a copy of UNDER GEMINI (ebook if international, print if US)
– Ends February 21st

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Book Tour Grand Finale for
The Outlaw’s Secret
By Stacy Henrie
We hope you enjoyed the tour! If you missed any of the stops, go back and check them out…

Launch – Note from the Author

I’m so excited to introduce readers to the Becketts brothers—one a lawman, the other an outlaw—in my next two books releasing from Love Inspired Historical. In THE OUTLAW’S SECRET, you’ll meet Tate Beckett, a Pinkerton detective posing as his outlaw twin brother Tex. You’ll also meet Essie Vanderfair, a dime novelist in need of a great story. And she hopes to find it when she begs to go along with the gang of train robbers that Tate has infiltrated. These opposites-attract characters were so much fun to write as were the outlaws Essie meets and interviews.

Bookworm Lisa – Review

“There were several instances that brought a smile to my face and I wanted how to know they were going to get out of the mess they were in. This is a fun book that is set in the “Old West”. There are outlaws, lawmen, and a feisty heroine.”

Rockin’ Book Reviews – Review & Interview

“This was a fun book. The characters were likable and flawed just enough.”

Q: What other genre, one day, would you like to write? Why or why not?

A: Though I’ve tried my hand at writing contemporary, I enjoy writing historicals much more. I’ve also dabbled with the idea of writing historical women’s fiction, but I love a good love story so I don’t know that I could pull off writing something without having a romance at its heart.

Katie’s Clean Book Collection – Review

“I love a romance that makes me swoon and this one does just that. Not only are the romance and characters well done, the setting is fantastic too. I felt myself transported back to the late 1800s and loved being a part of that time–when I wasn’t shivering in my boots with fear. I also really enjoyed Essie’s writing moments, which are often thoughts–she’s an interesting character with a vivid imagination and has me engrossed in her ideas. I’m definitely looking forward to what this author writes next!”

Hearts & Scribbles – Meet Tate and Essie 

Born and raised in Idaho, Tate Beckett is an identical twin. But his brown hair and blue eyes are about the only thing he shares with his brother Tex. Tate’s brother is the infamous outlaw known as the Texas Titan and Tate feels duty-bound to atone for his brother’s crimes by tracking down other outlaws in his job as a Pinkerton detective agent…

Reading Is My SuperPower – Review

“The Outlaw’s Secret has it all – action, adventure, romance, humor, faith and depth. It will make you smile and it will twist your heart too. It will make you hold your breath – for the kisses and again for the nail-biting action. Essie is such a fun heroine, and Tate is most definitely swoonworthy. Another fun and sweet novel by Stacy Henrie that I highly recommend!”

I Am A Reader – Undisguised: the Pinkerton National Detective Agency

While operatives were required to abide by a code of ethics—including things like not accepting reward money and working with local law enforcement—Allen Pinkerton was a staunch believer in the end justifying the means. That meant that sometimes in order for an operative to track down a criminal, the detective might have to “become” a criminal in a sense—just as Tate does by posing as his outlaw twin brother in order do to bring down the Fletcher gang.

The Power of Words – Review

“There’s nothing typical about Stacy Henrie’s newest release and she has become one of my favorite writers in the Love Inspired line. The Outlaw’s Secret has it all – character depth, humor, romance, suspense, and rich historical detail. It’s well written, entertaining, and refreshingly unusual in storyline.”

Seasons of Humility – Review

“On the romance side, it’s fun to watch Tate/Tex and Essie dance around each other, both mistrusting in turn and each fiercely determined to follow their own goals. Their journey includes moments of danger, threats to budding feelings, and a few twists.”

Kathleen Denly – Interview

Q: As an author, I often get asked how much of myself I put into my characters. So I’m curious, if you were on that train instead of Essie, how would you handle the situation?

A: I would’ve been terrified! And unlike Essie, I would have chosen to stay seated and silent and hopefully unseen.

Getting Your Read On – Review

“This was such a fun adventure. The story started off with a bang and took off from there. I settled right in and enjoyed the ride!”

Wishful Endings – Excerpt

Tate Beckett’s jaw was clenched so tight he thought it might snap. Of all the rotten misfortune. He had to run into a nosy, busybody like Miss Essie Vanderfair on his first job with Fletcher’s gang. If he wasn’t careful, this woman, with all her probing questions, would figure out he wasn’t the Texas Titan after all. Then his covert work, posing as his outlaw twin brother, would be finished.

Mel’s Shelves – Review

“Once I started reading this book, I settled in and didn’t want to put it down. It moves at a fast pace and there was never a dull moment. I enjoyed it from beginning to end and highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good, clean western romance!”

Falling Leaves – Excerpt

Fletcher’s mouth curled up in a sneer. “Try me, Tex.” He lifted his hands in a mock gesture of innocence. “But now your life is tied with hers.” He walked away, adding over his shoulder, “I think you’re smart enough to figure out what that means.”

Singing Librarian Books – Review

“Stacie Henry has masterfully written a story that readers will be enthralled with from page one until the very end. This is a fairly quick and easy read that will inspire the romance in all of us! Henry has a distinct way of writing that will draw readers in as they leave the world of reality behind and enter the enjoyable and entertaining world of the Wild West.”

Colorimetry – Excerpt

Sure enough she spotted the impression of horse hooves in the dirt and a partially trampled sagebrush farther on. If she kept heading in that same direction, she would eventually stumble into the trio.

She bent forward over the horse and coaxed it to go faster. There were interviews to conduct. And no one, not even a handsome, sly, back-stabbing Texan, was going to stop her.

Zerina Blossom’s Books – Interview

Q: Is there anything you would like to say to your fans or readers?

A: Thanks for your support! I’m excited to share Tate and Essie’s story with you. If you read it and enjoy it, then look for Tex’s story in July, when you’ll find out where the Texas Titan was while Tate was impersonating him to take down Fletcher’s gang.

Tell Tale Book Reviews – Review

“The Outlaw’s Secret delivers humor, romance, faith, and some wonderfully exciting moments where death is only a step away from both hero and heroine. . . . Fans of Stacy Henrie and of western historicals will surely not be disappointed in the thrilling pages. . .”

Heidi Reads… – Review

“I was glued to the pages to find out when Essie would discover Tate’s secret, when they would give in to the chemistry building between them, and if the real Tex would make an appearance. Another great western from Stacy Henrie with suspense, action, and romance!”

Her heart beat faster as she opened her mouth and said, “Call me Essie. It’s only fair.”

A low chuckle sounded in her ears. “Try to get some sleep, Essie. We’ve got another long ride tomorrow.”

Smiling in triumph, she closed her eyes, but it was still some time later before she could turn her thoughts from the silent figure guarding the camp. And from the memory of her name on those nice, masculine lips.

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway below, if you haven’t already…

The Outlaw’s Secret
by Stacy Henrie
Christian Historical Romance

Paperback & ebook, 288 pages
February 7th 2017 by Love Inspired Historical

Lawman in Disguise

Getting taken hostage by a gang of train robbers wasn’t in dime novelist Essie Vanderfair’s plans, but interviewing these men could make her career soar. Especially since the gang includes legendary outlaw Tex Beckett, better known as the Texas Titan. Tex is famed for his protection of women and children, so she’ll be fine…right?

Keeping the gang in line was hard enough before a stubborn, beautiful writer interfered. Now Tex is scrambling to keep Essie safe, to gather evidence against the gang and most of all to hide his dangerous secrets. First, that he’s a detective working undercover. And second, that he’s not the Texas Titan at all, but Tex’s twin brother, Tate Beckett.

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About the Author

USA Today bestselling author Stacy Henrie is the author of western romances and the Of Love and War series, which includes Hope at Dawn, a 2015 RITA Award finalist for excellence in romance. She was born and raised in the West, where she currently resides with her family. She enjoys reading, road trips, interior decorating, chocolate, and most of all, laughing with her husband and kids. You can learn more about Stacy and her books by visiting her website at stacyhenrie.com.


Tour Giveaway

– 1 winner will receive print copies of LADY OUTLAW and THE EXPRESS RIDER’S LADY + $10 Amazon Gift Card (US only)
– 1 winner will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Card (open internationally)
– Ends February 18th

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Book Release: The Egyptian Elixir
What if you were an average person – perhaps slightly above average because you have your medical degree – and one day, someone kidnapped you and turned you into a vampire? Would you suddenly turn evil? Become a crazed animalistic brute? Or would you retain your free will and battle your demons and temptations if you could?
The Unofficial Chronicles of John Grissom is a book series created for the modern reader who wants their vampires relate-able, their relationships snarky and humorous, and their fiction historical and exciting.
Set in the Regency era, the time of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, The Unofficial Chronicles follows the life of John Grissom, a second son of middle class gentry, and a bacteriologist by profession. Having been infected with the disease of vampirism, but unable to tolerate the idea of consuming human blood, he relies on animal blood to satisfy his dark needs. And does his best to retain every ounce of humanity he possibly can.
He leads a lonely life until he stumbles on a vampiric conspiracy to overturn the monarchy with Napoleon’s help, and “rightfully” establish vampires with the power and prestige some think is their due. John, his beautiful new assistant Henrietta Isherwood, and his new friend, Gerhardt Van Helsing, the Prussian vampire hunter extraordinaire, aren’t about to let England become an enslaved state.
The trio’s fledgling beginnings as the Bow St. Odd Crimes Division (think a Regency version of the XFiles) are captured in Order of the Blood, a full length novel now available for FREE on amazon.com. (No, seriously, you should go check it out, because it is that good!)
Their next adventure, minus the intrepid Henrietta who convalesces in Ireland, is presented in Page Zaplendam’s newest release, The Egyptian Elixir.
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8VP5O_JDkus]
 “loved, loved, loved it!” – ARC reviewer
What could possibly go wrong on a surveillance trip to Parliament? Apparently everything.
When John Grissom and Van Helsing find themselves witnesses to an assassination attempt on the Marquis of Wellesley, they discover London’s most notorious purveyor of stolen goods at the bottom of it. But his ability to influence people is odd to say the least. The vampire and the hunter investigate, but the Egyptian elixir may prove the undoing of them both.
With shades of old world science and new world sensibilities, The Unofficial Chronicles of John Grissom present a gripping take on the vampire narrative and ultimately ask the question, what truly makes a monster?
This Regency gothic won’t leave you afraid of the dark, but it will leave you admiring the fortitude and determination of one who can overcome his murderous inclinations, and still maintain an outlook on life that is free of bitterness and full of hope.
Reviewers said of Order of the Blood:
“a truly enticing novel”
“an exciting tale with real substance”
 “Read like an episode of Penny Dreadful”
 “I can’t wait for sequels”
The Egyptian Elixiris available on amazon.com for $1.99
Page Zaplendam is a longtime fan of science fiction everything, dystopian novels, folk lore, fairy tales, and Regency romance. She has been a contributor to several science fiction anthologies, owns an editing and freelance writing service, and occasionally blogs at www.pagezaplendam.com. An engaging and humorous entertainer, she loves doing live interviews, public speaking, and sharing about writing and marketing craft both on her blog and on 10 Minute Novelists, the Catholic Writer’s Guild, and the Clean Indie Reads group. Interested parties may find her on twitter (@pagezaplendam), Facebook, or Goodreads, when she’s not working on becoming the next bestseller or changing diapers… or the best at changing diapers.
If you’re interested in discount and giveaway info, exclusive free fiction, and the occasional weird story, be sure to sign up for her newsletter, The Fantastical.

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Release Celebration for
Royal Design
By Sariah Wilson
ROYAL DESIGN is releasing as a Kindle in Motion ebook. Go to Amazon to see a preview of some of the special video features included. It’s so fun! And in case you need a teaser, here is one of the heroine, Bellamy Sullivan:

Learn more below and enter the fabulous giveaway…
Royal Design
(The Royals of Monterra Novella)
by Sariah Wilson
Contemporary Romance

ebook, 217 pages
February 14th 2017 by Montlake Romance

Bellamy Sullivan’s life is hardly regal. She’s a waitress from Ohio who’s been on her own since she was sixteen, working several jobs while her dreams of being a fashion designer stay just that. But everything changes when PR maven and soon-to-be-royal Lemon Beauchamp drops in to announce that Bellamy is a princess. Unfortunately, Bellamy’s newly assigned bodyguard is the last man she wants to see.

A year ago, the royal family of Monterra tasked Enzo Rannalli with confirming Bellamy’s heritage, which meant he had to get very close to her. Enzo got the confirmation he needed, but he didn’t expect their connection to be so meaningful. And he didn’t expect his sudden departure to break the young princess’s heart.

In exchange for a once-in-a-lifetime chance to kick-start her fashion career, Bellamy agrees to star on a royal reality show that will match her with the world’s most eligible bachelors. But after a series of disastrous dates make her even more grateful for Enzo’s company, she wonders if her fairy-tale ending is waiting to happen off camera.

The Royals of Monterra Series
Nestled in the Alps between Switzerland and Italy, the small kingdom of Monterra is ruled by a loving and loyal family. Thanks to magical good fortune, the gorgeous and charming royal Fiorellis always know when they have found their true love and partner, and they won’t let anything get in the way of their happily ever after. Along with their friends and extended family members, they travel the world in pursuit of love and adventure. Full of relatable heroines, irresistible heroes, and glamorous backdrops, these sweet modern-day fairy tales offer a perfect romantic escape in a world where money is no object and love conquers all.
— Sariah
Other Books in the Series


About the Author

Bestselling author Sariah Wilson has never jumped out of an airplane, never climbed Mount Everest, and is not a former CIA operative. She has, however, been madly, passionately in love with her soul mate and is a fervent believer in happily ever afters—which is why she writes romance. She grew up in Southern California, graduated from Brigham Young University (go Cougars!) with a semi-useless degree in history, and is the oldest of nine (yes, nine) children. She currently lives with the aforementioned soul mate and their four children in Utah, along with three tiger barb fish, a cat named Tiger, and a recently departed hamster that is buried in the backyard (and has nothing at all to do with tigers). Learn more about her and her work at www.sariahwilson.com.
Release Celebration Giveaway

1 winner will receive a $25 Amazon eGift Card (open internationally)
Ends February 17th

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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: F. P. Spirit
Title of book and/or series: Ruins on Stone Hill/Heroes of Ravenford
Brief summary of the story:
A dark malevolence threatens Ravenford—the town under siege by forces unknown. Their only hope may lie in four newcomers: Lloyd, a young warrior with blades of fire, Glolindir, an elven wizard as deadly to his friends as his enemies, Seth, a cynical halfling who may be an assassin, and Aksel, a quiet gnome whose very touch can heal.
From eerie woods to haunted ruins, secret passages to hidden rooms, they must unearth the root of the darkness that has Ravenford at its mercy. With death breathing down their necks, will they rise to the challenge and become the heroes that Ravenford so sorely needs?
Brief description of the world or location you created for this story:
The story is set in the fictional world of Arinthar, on the island continent of Thac. It is a world of magic, populated by humans, mystical races and monsters, all of whom uneasily coexist together. The world has survived for many ages and numerous wars have taken place on its soil over the millennium, the last great conflict being the Thrall Wars nearly 100 years ago. Though other battles still ensue on the mainland, Thac has experienced an unusual period of quiet since then, but recent events have indicated that this brief time of peace may be coming to an end.
If we were to visit Thac as tourists, what would you recommend that we see or do there?
The world of Arithar is filled with many beautiful and strange sights. On the island continent of Thac alone, there is the eerie lighthouse, Sentilla Light. On the eastern coast, the magical tower not only lights the night sky, but makes continuous music as it does so.
There is also Kai Arborous in eastern-central Thac, the tree city of the High Elves. Located on the eastern edge of the great forest, Ruanaiaith, the breath-taking elven city sits high among the upper branches of the giant Arcarion that make up a majority of the ancient woods.
Far to the north, the gnomish city of Caprizon is built into the high cliffs on either side of the Stilwyndle. Myriads of cable cars hang over the great ravine, joining the two sides of the city together. To the south lies Lymeridia, the largest city in all of Thac, and perhaps the entire world. It is a sprawling ancient metropolis, and home to the Council of the Magi, the order that rules over all the magical users of Thac.
The island continent itself is divided down the middle by a towering wall of mountains that practically reach up to the sky. They are aptly named the Thertassels, or ‘Sky Wall’ mountains by the elves.
What dangers should we avoid in Thac?
Thankfully Thac is not nearly as dangerous these days as it was one hundred years ago during the Thrall Wars. Back then, demons, dragons, huge golems, zombies, vampires, and all sorts of other undead creatures roamed the island, killing all in sight. Though many lives were lost, thankfully their leaders, the Thrall Masters, were defeated.
The demons have since returned to the Abyss, the dragons now mostly keep to themselves, and the golems and undead have all but disappeared. However, there are rumors of dark things stirring in parts of Thac. The Bendenwoods are plagued by thieves. There are stories of giants descending from the hills and terrorizing farmsteads. Many sailors have claimed to see sea serpents off the coast. In the little town of Ravenford on the east coast, there is talk of spooky lights and sounds coming from the old ruins on top of Stone Hill to the south. The hill itself is surrounded by an eerie forest where most of the trees are dead. Nothing has grown there since anyone can remember.
The seas are also not always that friendly. Aside from serpent sightings, there are pirates the roam the waters between Thac and the mainland. However, thanks to the military might of Penwick, most pirates tend to stay away from the coast of Thac these days.
Is there a distinct or unusual type of food or meal that we might be served in Thac?
The denizens of Thac enjoy their ale, cider, and other typical brews. Foods are typically fresh from the surrounding farms and home-made. Chicken, steak, fruits, vegetables, pies and cakes are standard fare. Though there are spells that can produce feasts fit for a king, leaving the partakers feeling refreshed and sated for days.
What types of weaponry or fighting styles are common in Thac?
The sword, shield, knives, lances, maces, clubs are your standard weaponry in Thac. Yet, some have learned to supplement their combat styles with magic. Some of the more famous groups are the Knights of the Rose, a holy order of the wind god, Cormar. They use divine magic to strike down evil creatures and fell beasts with the swords. There are also the Ruby Knight Vindicators of the great city of Dunwynn. They are another holy order, but of the goddess of law, Wee Jas. The Ruby Knights use sword and spell to vanquish their foes. Finally, there are the Spirit Blades of Penwick. Spirit Blades do not get their power from a divine source. Instead, they are a martial order, training their mind, bodies, and spirits to perform great feats that appear like magic.
What types of vehicles, animals, technology, etc. are used to travel in or to Thac?
Travel in Thac is mostly by horse and wagon. Sea faring sailing vessels carry travelers around the coasts and across the channel to the vast mainland. However, there are airships that course through the skies, powered by the magic of great air elementals. Those airships are few though, mostly relegated to military endeavors.
What types of plants, animals, or sentient races might we encounter in Thac that we don’t see on Earth?
There are many magical races in Thac. Elves, dwarfs, gnomes, and halflings are a few of the friendlier ones. Yet, there are also dark elves, orcs, goblins, trolls, bugbears, all sentient, but not of the friendly variety of people. Dragons are a mixed breed. Metallic dragons are typically friendly, but the chromatic dragons are extremely dangerous to the other races. Arcarion trees can be found across the island continent, but are more prevalent in the forests of Ruanaiaith and the mainland.
What role, if any, does magic or the supernatural play in the lives of people in Thac?  If there is magic, please give some examples of what it involves or how it’s used.
Magic is quite prevalent throughout the world of Arinthar, though not so much that it is used by everyday folk. Still, there are many different types of magic users in Thac.
Classical spellcraft magic is powered by mana, the energy in and around all things. There are two schools of spell casters, arcane and divine. Arcane casters use their intellect to drive their abilities while divine casters derive their focus from their faith. Spells are cast through a combination of material ingredients, ritual movements, and verbal commands.
There are other types of spell casters who use mana, but gain their focus through a pact with spirits. These magic users are dubbed witches and warlocks. While many mean well, spirits are an unknown quantity. Evil spirits in particular will warp their prodigies into dark witches and the like. Therefore, it is not a widely practiced art.
There is one other school of magic in Thac, or a derivative of magic. It is called Psionics. Unlike classical spellcraft, psionicists do not rely on mana as their source of energy. Instead, their power comes from within—from their spirit or soul. Psionicists use concentration to focus their abilities and do not need material items or motions to invoke their power.
Interestingly enough, there is a direct correlation between psionics and the Spirit Blades of Penwick.
Is there any advanced or unusual technology in Thac?  If you haven’t described it already, please give some examples.
We’ve already discussed airships. Aside from those, there are teleportation rings which can instantaneously transport a person or object to another location on the planet. There are also mage cannon which expell spheres containing great fire elementals. Those can cause massive damage to any target they hit. There are soul gems, jewels that contain the captured souls of a living creature. Those magical items can be fixed into almost any item, be it a weapon, shield, bracer, or other piece of armor, bestowing enhanced powers to the wielder or wearer. There are also rune weapons or armor which function similar to items powered by soul gems. Rune items, however, are driven by the symbols of magic, a far more preferable way to acquire power than through the enslavement of living souls.
Tell us about any sports, games, or activities that are available for entertainment in Thac.
Entertainment in Thac is mostly found in taverns, the halls of royalty, and events. The Fair in Lukescros is yearly event that ushers in the fall season in Thac. The venue includes everything from duels and jousting to musical competitions. Music is a huge source of entertainment in Thac. Bards travel between the cities and towns, performing both song and dance, as well as telling stories and delivering news.
Are the days of the week and months of the year the same in Thac as on Earth? What holidays or special events are celebrated regularly there?
The days of the week are the same as ours. However, the months are different. These are: Ianuarius, Februarius , Martius, Aprilis, Maius, Iunius, Quintilis, Sextilis, Setembrius, Octibrius, Notimbrius, Decimbrius. There are numerous fall festivals throughout Thac including the Fair in Lukescros. There is also Festivus during the start of winter at the end of the year. Finally, there is a great celebration on Martius 15th. Known as “Freedom Day,” it is the date the last Thrall Master was defeated some hundred years ago.
Is there a particular religion practiced in Thac?  Please describe what it involves.
The world of Arinthar is a polytheistic society. There exists an entire pantheon of gods and goddess called the Ralnai. Above them all reside the seven greater powers who are never seen nor worshiped individually. Situated below the greater powers are the material gods. These are gods and goddesses who have manifested at times to their worshipers and provide focus to clerics, or divine casters, of their order. The material gods are numerous, each having their own area of dominion. For example, Cormar is the god of winds, Alaric the god of storms, and Arenor the hand of light. There are also dark gods such as Cel, the mistress of death. That is not her full name, but if one were to speak it, she would appear before them and they would die instantly.
What is the political or government structure in Thac?  Who is in charge there at the moment, and what kind of leader is he/she?
There is no one leader in Thac since the overthrow of the mad Emperor Naradon seven hundred years ago. Thac was divided into Dukedoms and Baronies since that time, and has been ruled in that manner to this day. The Council of the Magi in Lymeridia is perhaps the only central ruling body in the entire island continent. There are kingdoms on the mainland such as Lanfor and Isandor, but the rulers of Thac have little direct contact with them other than trade.
Are there any other unique cultural practices that we should be aware of if we visit Thac?
The elves are a very old and proper race with a long history of propriety and traditions. For instance, they consider it polite to greet and complement each other with formal elven sayings. When Glolindir, the elven wizard, first meets the half-elf merchant, Pheldan, he thanks him with the phrase Aa’ lasser en lle coia orn n’ omenta gurtha. This roughly translates to May the leaves of your life tree never turn brown. Therefore, if you plan on traveling to Kai Arborous, or find yourself in the company of elves, it might be best to brush up on elvish etiquette.
Also, if you are not human, and travel to northeastern Thac, try to avoid the city of Dunwynn. Dunwyneers are extremely xenophobic, and will either run you out of town, or worse.
Has anything in your actual life inspired the locations, cultures, etc. in your book?
The stories of Thac and the Heroes sprang from a role-playing adventure my sons and I participated in over the last few years. It started out as background material for the characters, then grew into short stories, and even entire story arcs. The Heroes series is loosely based on those stories, as sort of a legacy to my sons and our friends. Thus, some of the characters have personality traits which closely mimic some of the people in my life.
What, if any, “hot-button” or controversial topics do you touch on in your book?
Spirituality, the belief in something greater than ourselves, the spirit of cooperation, and the overcoming of our differences are all themes within the books. Racial bigotry and the corruption of power are also two topics that frequently appear in the novels.
Author Autobiography:
F.P. Spirit has always loved fantasy. From the moment he received his very first copy of Lord of the Rings back in high school, he was hooked. Today, somewhere between work and family, F. P. manages to write sword and sorcery fantasy fiction.
His novels, Ruins on Stone Hill, Serpent Cult and Dark Monolith, are the first three books in the series Heroes of Ravenford. The series chronicles the adventures of a band of young heroes in the dangerous world of Thac. F.P. is currently working on the fourth book in the Heroes of Ravenford series, Princess of Lanfor, to be released in 2017.
Where, and in what formats, can we purchase your books?
The first three books of the Heroes of Ravenford Series can be purchased on Amazon in both ebook and paperback format:
Ruins on Stone Hill – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00L5JN5SE
Where can readers connect with you online?
My author website is http://www.fpspirit.com/
I also have a FB page for the Heroes series at https://www.facebook.com/HeroesOfRavenford/

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I hope you all enjoyed the trip to Thac.  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 next week’s edition of Realm Explorers!
-Annie Douglass Lima

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Book Tour Grand Finale for
A Cowboy to Keep
By Karen Rock
We hope you enjoyed the tour! If you missed any of the stops, go back and check them out…
Launch – Note from the Author

Best of all, this novel is the prequel to my ROCKY MOUNTAIN COWBOYS series that starts November 1, 2017. THE ROCKY MOUNTAIN COWBOY series chronicles the lives and loves of Jack’s ranching family, the Cades (hot-tempered, passionate rough-riding rebels) and their neighbors, the Lovelands, (laconic, stubborn, gritty loners), with whom they’ve feuded for over a hundred years. They are loyal, strong and determined cowboys who work hard, play harder and love forever. I know you’ll fall in love with them as much as I have!

Christy’s Cozy Corners – Dani’s 10 Tips to Running a Dude Ranch

Howdy all! Dani Crawford, stable manager at the Mountain Sky Dude Ranch outside of Denver, Colorado has learned a lot on the job and she’s ready to share her tips to running a dude ranch…

1. Carefully plan your horse line-up. Keep horses that don’t like each other apart, pair the right horse with the right human and always put the gassy horse in the back- lol.

Rockin’ Book Reviews – Review

“This is a tale of secrets, judgement, redemption, mystery, suspense and romance. , . . This was a very enjoyable book to relax with.”

Katie’s Clean Book Collection – Excerpt

Jack rolled his eyes skyward and his chest rose and fell. “Ma’am. I have no quarrel with you. Let me have my gun and I’ll be on my way.”

Dani blew out a breath. “Kick it over here.” He did, and the Glock skidded to a stop at her feet. “Don’t move unless you want your head blown off.” At his nod, she snatched it up and straightened, her rifle still trained on the trespasser. “I could shoot you. It’s the law.”

“But you won’t.” He lowered his arms and crossed them.

Bookworm Nation – Review

“I really enjoyed this one. I I thought the plot and setting were a lot of fun. I also really enjoyed the characters of Dani and Jack.”

I Am A Reader – Things Bounty Hunters Hear

Jack’s been chasing criminals since bond jumpers gunned down his little brother two years ago. He wants retribution, but most of all he wants redemption since he blames himself for not protecting his sibling like he should have, as an older brother. Life on the road is hard, but he won’t quit until he takes as many lowlifes off the streets as possible so that no families have to suffer as his have. Here’s a sample of what he hears every day on the job:

1. “You’ve got the wrong guy.”

Nicole’s Book Musings – Excerpt

Dani’s stomach fluttered at Jack’s appreciative look, then he strode down the hill. When she hustled after him, he stopped at the base. “What are you doing?”

“Going with you.”

“Sorry, sweetheart, it’s too dangerous.”

With Love for Books – Review

“Karen Rock writes about a beautiful ranch with stunning horses situated in a former mining area. There are many places for a criminal to hide, both on and close to the premises, and while Jackson and Dani visit them because they’re looking for someone, I could still enjoy the vivid descriptions of the amazing countryside, a combination I liked a lot. A Cowboy to Keep is an original love story. It’s filled with suspense and at the same time it’s really romantic. I loved this fabulous story with many unexpected twists and turns.”

Reading Is My SuperPower – Interview

Around here I like to say that reading is my superpower. If YOU had a superpower, what would it be?

Karen: Hmmmm… there are so many good ones that I wish I had… I would love to fly. Sometimes I really, really wish I could make myself invisible. Also, it’d be fun to morph into different animals, like dolphins or eagles, and get to see their worlds. But, if I’m true to who I am, my superpower would be storytelling because I believe in the power of stories to uplift us and transport us from our everyday lives. I’m a big believer in hope and positivity and faith and I hope my books give that to my readers.

Urban Book Reviews – Review

“The book was intense. Sweet, hot, and intriguing. I couldn’t stop reading it. Karen Rock has created two characters that will never be forgotten. An emotional attachemwnt occurs once the book is read. Once, one reads this, it will be hard to let go. Addictive, well-written, and highly engaging. Overall, I highly recommend this romance to readers worldwide.”

The Silver Dagger Scriptorium – Jackson’s 10 Tips to Courting a Cowgirl

Howdy! Jack here. Tracking bandits is easier than chasing cowgirls. When I first lady eyes on Dani, my heart about stopped beating. Of course, she’d pulled a gun on me for snooping around the dude ranch, so that might have been a contributing factor. Still, I knew right then and there I wouldn’t rest until I’d swept her off her feet and into my arms. I don’t love often, but I love hard and I knew she was the only woman for me. Here are my tips on how best to court a strong, gutsy cowgirl like Dani:

1. Don’t leave home without your wranglers and your cowboy hat. And a little face scruff never hurt none, neither.

Hearts & Scribbles – Excerpt

“Thought you were waiting for my signal.”

Dani’s voice was breathy.

“If I waited any longer, I’d be drawing social security.”

“Ha-ha,” she said slowly, so Jack understood exactly how funny she thought him, and, contrarily, wouldn’t suspect that she really did find him amusing.

No more flirting.

Brooke Blogs – Review

“A Cowboy to Keep was such an enjoyable book. Between Dani’s past catching up to her, the chase for Smiley, and even more twists and turns, you will find yourself staying up late to finish this one. I liked the suspense and I really liked the romance. It was tender, sweet, and believable. If you like sweet, wholesome romance plus suspense, then you will enjoy A Cowboy to Keep by Karen Rock.”

Okie Dreams Book Reviews – Review

“If you’re looking for a terrific contemporary romance with a good dabble of suspense mixed in, pick up a copy of A Cowboy to Keep by Karen Rock. It’s a great read and the perfect prequel story to what promises to be a stellar new series: Rocky Mountain Cowboys.”

Falling Leaves – Excerpt

Jack. When he smiled, Dani couldn’t help smiling. When his face turned sad, something inside her broke a little. She wished she’d met him years ago, before she’d gone left instead of right, taken the wrong turns that kept her from ever traveling beside him.

But she had him for now and she’d make the most of it.

Paulette’s Papers – Jackson’s 10 Tips to Tracking Down a Criminal

Hey all. Jack here. I’ve been tracking bond-jumpers since my brother’s murderers skipped out on their court appearance. This cowboy’s picked up a few tips for tracking down criminals:

1. A little menace goes a long way in persuading reluctant witnesses to talk.

Getting Your Read On – Review

“In addition to romance, this book has a bit of danger, mystery and suspense to liven things up. . . . It’s hard to resist a good cowboy story!”

Thoughts of a Blonde – Excerpt

All her feelings for him—hot and beautiful in her heart—dissolved on her tongue, strange, new and inexpressible.

He twined his fingers in hers, his thumb circling the center of her palm, slowly, and Dani disintegrated.

Becky on Books – Interview

Where did the inspiration for this book come from?

I’m a huge fan of westerns, especially ones with renegade heroes like Jack Cade. Those dark, conflicted cowboys tempt the good gal in all of us who hope to tame these strong, fierce men. I was also inspired by the idea that sometimes the person who most needs to forgive us for our past mistakes is ourselves. Both Jack and Dani have troubled pasts and their path to love requires them to confront, and forgive those mistakes before they can be ready for their happily-ever-after. I always want my characters to earn their happy endings and when Jack and Dani finally get there, it’s all the sweeter for the challenges they overcame.

Book Reviews – Review

“I loved this story by Karen Rock. . . . If you love cowboys, horses, and adventure, you will love A Cowboy to Keep.”

Heidi Reads… – Excerpt

And then he pulled back, his eyes on her, his expression a silent question she couldn’t answer. Instead, she reached up and kissed his scar, wanting him to know that it made him beautiful to her. How much he meant to her. How every atom of her wanted to be here with him.

He angled his head and kissed her once more, slowly and tenderly.

Fire and Ice Book Reviews – Review

“FANTASTIC!!! Another fantastic read by Karen Rock. This story not only had the chemistry between Dani and Jackson but had tons of twists and turns some that I didn’t see coming. “

Mel’s Shelves – Reasons to Vacation on a Dude Ranch

The first time I learned about dude ranches was in a funny movie titled CITY SLICKERS with Jack Palance, playing a tough as nails cowboy, and a three city boys, comedians Billy Crystal, Bruno Kirby and Daniel Stern, who are hopelessly out of their element after they sign on for a cattle drive. Watching the grandeur of the West, the freedom and sense of independence life on the range can give, I’ve always known two things: 

1. I would someday visit and/or live out west and I would write a book set here.

Lola’s Reviews – Review

“If you’re looking for a great slow building romance with a well done, but subtle suspense element I would definitely recommend this book. There was so much I enjoyed about this from the realistic and interesting main character to the wonderful setting, the suspense element which kept me on my toes and wondering about people their motivations and some side characters that made the story complete. The romance feels real and these two were so great together. This might be my favorite book by this author yet and if I am correct this is the first book in a new series!”

Zerina Blossom’s Books – Interview

What was your favorite chapter (or part) to write and why?

My favorite chapter is always the Happily-Ever-After chapter. I put my characters through quite a bit before we reach the ending and it makes the final scene the sweetest of all because we know that the hero and heroine have truly earned that joy. It’s that smiling through tears part of the book and I can’t wait to write those scenes!

Don’t forget to enter the fabulous giveaway below, if you haven’t already…
A Cowboy to Keep
by Karen Rock
Contemporary Romance

Paperback & ebook, 384 pages
February 7th 2017 by Harlequin

Can’t stop running from the past

Dani Crawford has a secret…and if bounty hunter Jackson Cade finds out, he could ruin everything. The scarred yet handsome cowboy has tracked a dangerous criminal to the dude ranch Dani manages, and to get rid of Jack she’ll have to help him catch his man. But the closer they get to cornering their quarry the more Dani wants Jack to stay. Spending time with him is making her long for things she can never have thanks to a past mistake. And if the truth comes out she may be spending her future behind bars rather than safe in her cowboy’s arms…

GoodreadsAmazonBarnes & NobleKobo
Book DepositoryHarlequin

About the Author

In a quest to provide her ELA students with quality reading material, educator Karen Rock read everything out there and couldn’t wait to add her voice to the genre. In addition to her work as a Young Adult romance novelist, she’s now an author for Harlequin’s Heartwarming line and thrilled to pen stories that moms can share with their teenage daughters. She’s loved Harlequin books since she spent summers going through her grandmother’s Presents books that she passed along in paper grocery bags each year. As half of the writing duo J.K. Rock, Karen also pens young adult romance. When she’s not busy writing, Karen enjoys scouring estate sales for vintage books, cooking her grandmother’s family recipes, reinventing her gardens to suit her moods and occasionally rescuing local wildlife from neighborhood cats. She lives in the Adirondack Mountain region with her husband, her very appreciated beta-reader daughter, and two Cavalier King cocker spaniels, who have yet to understand the concept of “fetch” though they know a lot about love. For more information about Karen’s upcoming books, check out her website.




Tour Giveaway

– 1 winner will win the above Prize Pack: 7 Paperbacks & a $50 Amazon Gift Card (US only)
– 1 winner will their choice of an ebook of one of Karen’s backlisted titles (open internationally)
– Ends February 14th

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