Saturday, January 18, 2020

BLOOD PHOENIX INFERNO (Broken World Book 4) | by Alisha Costanzo #Paranormal #Vamps #Excerpt #BookReview #Giveaway #RABT #urbanFantasy


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Broken World Book 4
Urban Fantasy/Paranormal
Date Published: January 3, 2020
Publisher: Transmundane Press

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Drawing the Scarlet Queen to central New York’s training grounds, Ria’s remarkable blood triggers negotiations between two kingdoms.
Ria questions her own humanity when she finds herself aligned with Phea, the vampire queen—a woman who’s tortured her and her friends for months.
As all of her secrets unravel around her, Ria is forced to conform or sacrifice the people she loves.
If she doesn’t find a way to break their alliance, the balance of the universe will plunge deeper into chaos, and no one will be safe.
With a sprinkling of Twilight, a bite of Anita Blake, and a smattering of satirical Buffy the Vampire Slayer, you won’t want to miss this dark and witty vampire series.

Excerpt
Chapter One
Gene burst into my room and jarred me upright in my bed. Nausea burrowed into my gut, finding its old nesting hole to roll around in. Oh god. I was going to be sick again.
“Get dressed. We’re expected in the clearing.” He drew the sheets back to hurry me along.
“What’s going on?”
The shift to get out of bed set off warning bells, and my head dropped between my knees.
“Another renegade.”
My esophagus shrank.
I bolted to the bathroom, kicking the door closed as I bent over the toilet and puked. This had been my routine for the last few weeks. Gene was unhappy to admit that my lack of faerie blood contributed to it, but he gladly filled in the gaps as he could.
“We do not have time—”
I wiped my mouth on the back of my hand. “Pull out something for me to wear. I won’t be long.”
Another wave trampled me.
My stomach churned out more bile.
I rinsed and waited.
Twice was my pattern, but some days…so I lingered.
Five deep breaths, and I opened the door to a dress.
“Come on. Are you kidding me?”
“We do not have time.”
Ugh. I snatched it and threw it over my head, snagging the heels that would only sink into the grass. Gene both ushered and supported me as I slipped into the shoes on our way out of the apartment.
“I didn’t know James was looking for anyone.” Fidgeting with the dress top, the line didn’t match the sports bra I wore beneath it.
“He’s not the only one with the job.”
We stood around the semi-circle as Phea strode across the lawn, waiting in her usual spot in front of the entrance to the grounds, dressed like the true queen she was. Powerful. Elegant. Elevated.
She took up the entire clearing with her presence.
Not that long ago, I tramped through that foliage to face the queen of the vampires and ended the evening with a stake beside my heart, dying, and claimed by a man I didn’t know—the one I’d grown reliant on, connected to, comfortable with. I suppressed the urge to reach for his hand now.
The brush rustled, and Vincent stepped through—all doom and danger—then Julia appeared.
That couldn’t be.
Julia was dead.
Dead-dead.
Set-herself-on-fire dead.
The blonde hair shimmered, and Julia vanished. In her place stood the small blonde woman I’d seen in Vincent’s memories. A patch of hair buzzed around her ear, a gold piece holding her hair in place to expose it, and her rainbow eyes glowed with the kind of power that seemed regal.
Not what I expected out of a renegade.
Nor was the corset cinching her abundant dress.
Phea’s surprise shifted her unnaturally, like when a cat tilted its head on its side but not nearly as dramatic. Scarlet stood from her dais on the porch behind our queen—a queen of her own. Bloody, they said. The Scarlet Queen.
“May I present Nani, Maka Nani, noble faerie of the underwater mound.” Vincent presented her in the same way James, my maker, presented me to Phea. An offering.
And that’s exactly what she was.
“Oh, Commander, how naughty you’ve been.”
His bow held an intimacy that came from a reformed renegade. One that made her third in command so loyal to her. Nani, the new vampire, fell into a graceful and practiced curtsy without buckling under fear.
Certainly not a normal renegade.
Scarlet’s obvious interest countered her usual demeanor, wicked and cold—colder than Phea, and it seemed to spark a challenge between the two, given the recent trend of sacrifices they paraded through the grounds.
“She is my claim, Your Majesty.”


My Review
Fast-paced and just dark enough to make me really love it, BLOOD PHOENIX: INFERNO is the fourth book in the fabulous Alisha Costanzo's Broken World series. Not having read the previous three books, I was unsure how I would do, coming in mid-stream.  I'm happy to report that although I would love to have read the first three books ahead of time, I was able to follow along and understand exactly what was happening - the sign of a truly well-written book. I love a good Vamp story and this one grabbed my attention and held it straight through until the end.  I loved how well each of the characters were written and developed, with just the right amount of both drama and snark in the dialogue. I look forward to going back and reading the books I missed and hope that there will be plenty more reading from Ms. Costanzo in the future.  I strongly recommend this book to all true vamp lovers.

5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I thank Alisha Costanzo and RABT Book Tours for providing me with this great book.  I am leaving my review voluntarily and all opinions are my own.


About the Author
 photo Costanzo Author Pic_zpsemlfotuc.jpgWife of a disabled veteran, Alisha Costanzo writes about PTSD, environmentalism, violence, and conformity. With a mutually-fueled passion to change the world one person at a time, she often writes about her husband’s rants, conspiracy theories, and trains of logic that seem absurd until the connections line up, and mixes them into her obsession with cooking, coffee, and pop-culture monsters.

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Friday, January 17, 2020

THE FLOW SERIES | by Clare Littlemore #YA #Dystopian #Excerpt #Giveaway #SilverDaggerBookTours



Hey, y'all! This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by SilverDagger Book Tours. Clare Littlemore will be awarding a $50 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour! You can click HERE to see the other stops on the tour.


Flow 
The Flow Series Book 1 
by Clare Littlemore 
Genre: YA Dystopian Fiction 


A flooded future. A relationship torn apart.

When 16-year old Quin's best friend Harper fails The Beck's assessment, will she ever see her again?

Regular appraisals are part of life in The Beck, a walled-in community constantly threatened by floodwaters. But when the shocking results of the most recent test are revealed, Quin knows her world is about to change forever.

Wrenched from Agric, where she has lived and worked for years, Quin finds herself thrown into the unfamiliar Patrol Sector. Yearning for her lost friend, struggling to adjust to her new surroundings, she begins to question the society she thought she knew.

And then she meets the mysterious Cam, who seems willing to break the rules for her. Determined to find Harper, Quin enlists his help. But when she discovers the horrifying truth, it might just destroy her.

If you devour fast-paced, addictive stories with compelling characters who inhabit intriguing futures, you’ll love The Flow Series. 


Goodreads * Amazon

Chapter One
When I woke it was well before dawn. I could hear the rain pattering on the pod tarps, a sound I had long ago learned to tune out. Usually in the dark I could hear the comforting sound of the other girls’ slow, sleepy breathing, but not today.
For a long time, I refused to open my eyes. Lying still, I tried to prolong the moment when I would have to admit that I was no longer asleep. Of course, the only day we were allowed to take a break from duties was the one time we could never stay asleep. All non-essential tasks would be suspended, for the morning at least.
Ours was an Agricultural pod. Growing the produce which fed the entire Beck was a vital task, and there were more than two hundred workers assigned to man the fields and greenhouses. Heavy flooding and regular storms meant our community fought a constant battle against rising floodwaters, so protecting the growing areas was paramount for our survival. But the fields and greenhouses could manage a short period without our labour force. The Supers would man any crucial stations for the earlier part of the day.
Usually our pod slept until the very last moment, and then became a frenzied chaos of activity before we all headed out to face the day. We grabbed our undershirts and pulled on dark green overalls and boots, the creaking of camp beds echoing throughout the near-silent pod. Every day we headed out the door as one just before 5.30am.
Not today though.
A dramatic sigh from the bed next to mine interrupted my thoughts. Reluctantly I opened my eyes to find a pair of alarmingly blue ones staring back at me, as I had known they would be. Cassidy. Her regulation cropped hair was white-blonde and stuck out in every direction. I tried to smile at her, knowing that the occasion and the early hour would turn the expression into a grimace even as I tried to seem optimistic.
“Hey.”
“Hey yourself.”
Our voices were a whisper. Anything above that would earn the entire pod a reckoning. Nobody wanted that, especially today.
“You ok?”
I shrugged, not knowing how to reply.
“Quin!”
“I’m ok.”
“Really?”
Now it was my turn to sigh. “No. Not really.”
“Harper?”
I nodded and rolled quickly on to my back, staring at the tarp above my head. The pod was filled with muffled whispers now, and we were in danger of being overheard. Grady, our Super, was the only one still sleeping, but she wouldn’t be for much longer. We were better off not talking, not making any noise. I wondered as I justified it to myself whether it was simply an excuse not to discuss the subject any further. I had been awake for hours the previous night, dreading today. Not for myself: for Harper. But talking about it wouldn’t make any difference.
“Quin?” This time the voice came from my other side and was softer, less insistent.
I turned to see Harper staring at me. Her thin face was ghostly in the early morning light, and I sighed as I took in her sunken cheeks and the listless expression in her pale green eyes. Forcing a smile, I tried to sound confident.
“You ready?”
“You know I’m not. Barely scraped through last time.”
“But we worked on it.”
“Not enough Quin.”
Harper’s eyes filled with tears but they did not fall. Fear lanced through my chest at the defeat in her tone.
As I turned away, I noticed that the whispering had stopped. Grady was awake and had climbed out of her bunk to begin dressing. Eager not to anger our Super unnecessarily, others followed suit. Today the rush to haul on overalls and boots was not chaotic. Instead our actions were slow and measured. We had time, and no-one was eager to embrace the day’s events. Despite this, within a few minutes our group had gathered at the mouth of the pod and lined up. Her usual grimace in place, Grady unzipped the tarp and a dim, grey light spilled through the entrance. I shuddered as we marched outside in silent unison and headed towards the canteen.
The rain had stopped but the sky was iron grey above us. This was not unusual, but the looming clouds seemed angrier today. As we passed the other Agric pods in silence, different units emerged, our numbers growing steadily until the area was filled with the sound of rhythmic marching that propelled each line, like automatons, towards the hilltop path.
Glancing left I could see down into the fields which stretched away before us into the distance, empty for now. The dark, protective fencing round the Hydro Plant, where The Beck got much of its power supply. Then the wall. Tall, strong, protective, manned by Patrol guards as always. Beyond the wall were the floodplains, their waters seemingly still from this distance, reflecting the steely sky and encircling the entire Lower Beck. Sometimes the level of water was barely visible. After a storm it increased and everyone got twitchy for a while, until a spell of better weather beat it into temporary retreat. But the huge body of water was always there, a silent threat that nobody in The Beck could ignore.
Moving beyond the Agric Compound, we skirted the edge of the LS pods, deserted at this time of day, and then passed by the Dev Compound, where the staff would not yet be awake. In the distance I caught a tantalising glimpse of the woods leading to the Upper Beck, and in the distance I could just see the pass between the hills that provided a fourth wall to our valley.  Finally our line snaked sharply left towards the Lower Beck canteen. Steam rose softly from the rear of the building and the unmistakeable scent of baking bread filled the air. The Sustenance Crew would also not avoid their duties today. We all had to eat.
Marching a few steps ahead, I watched as Cassidy turned her head slightly towards me. Usually she did this when she wanted to direct a whispered remark at me, or snort with suppressed laughter at whatever she had found amusing. We had perfected the art of communicating in near-silence after years of practice. Only essential, work-related communication was permitted in The Beck. We had learned fast that the easiest way to survive was to exist unnoticed, under the radar. But today Cassidy’s speech seemed to die in her throat and she merely glanced strangely at me before spinning back to face her destination again as though she had thought better of it.
Our lines came to a halt at the flagpole just in front of the canteen. Usually we were eager for food and this was tangible, even in the silence. Now the lines were filled with grim expressions and no one seemed eager to hustle in and eat. A solitary voice, whichever Sustenance Super was on duty today, called out pod numbers from a clipboard. One by one, the lines trudged inside the tent.
I found myself willing the process to take longer to delay the inevitable, but too soon our line was filing in behind the others and queuing for the daily bowl of porridge and rough hunk of bread. Today’s portion was made with milk, a rare treat. The usual watery substance which lurked in our bowls was replaced by a creamy, filling warmth. It was only a pity that we couldn’t enjoy it.
Collecting my allotted bowl, I walked to the pod’s usual table and slid on to the bench. A moment later, a small, cold hand slid inside my own underneath the table. I couldn’t believe how small the hand inside mine felt, how feeble. I turned slightly to my right and managed a small smile for Harper, squeezing her hand in return before turning my attention to the meal.
I had little appetite, but the porridge was thick and creamy and I knew my body needed the strength it would provide. Forcing down spoonful after spoonful, I wished we could be afforded this kind of nourishment on a day when we could actually enjoy it. But it was tradition, to provide us all with a filling meal before the trials which awaited us.
The room was eerily quiet for a building which housed so many people. All female at the moment, the canteen contained row upon row of benches which housed a never-ending stream of hungry workers. A large, barn-like structure with whitewashed walls and stark, simple furniture, the canteen never stopped, and every pod was carefully assigned two meal-time slots each day. The portions we received were meagre and barely kept us going, so anyone missing a meal really suffered. In our world, there were very few justifications for missing out on food.
I watched as table after table of girls ate, heads bowed, our silence more severe than usual due to the tasks which awaited us. The table at the top of the room was elevated slightly and contained the Supers. Their portions were slightly larger than the rest, which was why Super positions were so sought after. Both Cassidy and I would be considered for Super positions today, and Cass was looking forward to the prospect of a slightly better diet, but I knew that being promoted also came with its down sides. Being separated from friends I had known from the moment I was assigned to the Agric Compound was one. The extra responsibility was another. I wondered again if I had the stomach for it. But what else was there?
I glanced at Cassidy sitting beside me, consuming her breakfast with a grim determination. She too was sneaking looks at the Supers between swallowing, as if making vital mental notes about them. After a few minutes she stared directly at me, her eyes burning fiercely.
“Three,” she hissed.
“Three what?”
“Places up for grabs,” she raised an eyebrow, “I think three of them are going up.”
I thought about it. Of the twenty Supers currently at the top table, Cassidy believed that three of them would be promoted to positions in other fields today, leaving their places free for others to take. There were at least thirteen girls I knew of being considered for elevation. Competition was tough. Cassidy was desperate to become Super. I wasn’t quite as enthusiastic. My main reason for wanting promotion was Harper. If she could only get through today, and if Cassidy or I could make Super, we might protect her. Without that, we all knew she couldn’t go on for much longer.
A tap on my thigh brought my attention back to my friend sitting on the bench next to me. I realised I was being handed something else. Harper was determinedly pressing something into my hand: the hunk of bread she had been given by the Sustenance worker. I stared at her fiercely.
“Take it back.”
Harper shook her head.
“Take. It. Back!” I hissed.
The Super on duty was looking our way. I bowed my head rapidly, pushing the bread towards Harper, who was now staring in the other direction. I noticed that her porridge was barely touched.
“But you need it,” I pleaded, “more than I do.”
“I can’t.”
Finding sudden tears in my eyes, I had to bite my lip to keep them from falling. Harper was desperately skinny already, she had been for months now. She had struggled to collect her share of crops in the fields and Cassidy and I had been helping her out, collecting extra and slipping it her way when no one was watching. The additional work had almost killed us, but we had agreed it was worth it for Harper. It had also had the unexpected effect of strengthening us both, building real muscles on our wiry frames, and was one of the reasons that we were eligible for Super promotion today.
Harper, on the other hand, had only grown steadily weaker. I suspected that she was ill, but admitting that was far more dangerous than trying to hide her weakness. There was no option of medical treatment for her. We could only help her out where possible and hope time would help her to heal. Over and over again, I had offered her a share of my rations, hoping that the extra food would allow her to grow stronger, but more often than not she had refused to take it. Even when she did accept a small amount of food, she struggled to eat it. Whatever was the matter with her seemed to have killed off her appetite and her spirit, and she struggled even to consume The Beck’s paltry rations.
Watching Harper struggle to finish the tiny bowl of porridge, I remembered the way she used to be. I had known Cassidy and Harper for a long time, but three years ago, when we all passed out of Minors and were assigned to the same Agric pod, our friendship had really taken root. The three of us had quickly become inseparable. The Beck was a restrictive place: the work hard and the hours long once you moved into a Compound at the age of fourteen, but between the regulations and the hardships there was room for friendships to grow. The relationships we developed with our pod sisters were what kept us all going.
Where I was quite thoughtful and quiet, Cassidy was loud and boisterous, a character trait she was mostly forced to stifle. Cass regularly made fun of me for being uptight, which had led to several arguments between us in the past. But Harper was loving and gentle and funny, the perfect connection between us and she diffused our regular spats with an easy understanding of both our characters.
She was also by far the most suited to the Agriculture Compound. Even in the very early days she had shown herself to be extremely adept at planting, nurturing, and gathering the crops so essential to the continuation of life in The Beck. She was the one who understood exactly how to make things grow and thrive, and she was looked upon as an unofficial Supervisor well before the age of sixteen due to her capacity for understanding exactly what was required to ensure the healthiest harvest.
Realising that the rest of the table had finished eating, I thrust the bread at Cassidy underneath the table. I knew she would accept it, where I couldn’t swallow my friend’s quota of food without feeling a keen sense of betrayal. Moments later, we rose and began filing out of the large room, the Sustenance staff already sweeping in to clear the bowls from the tables and begin again with the next sitting. Leaving the canteen, our line turned out of the exit doors and wound its way back round the path which took us within sight of the entrance again. Now, a similar sized group of young men from the LS pods was hungrily awaiting their turn to eat, having already chalked up several hours of work with The Beck livestock.
Usually plenty of glances passed between the groups, even from this distance. The Lower Beck’s male and female citizens were separated from a very early age, when they were still Minors even, and most of the pod assignments at the age of fourteen were single gender. Only in certain Compounds were male and female citizens permitted to work together. That didn’t prevent curiosity though, in fact it probably made us even more inquisitive about the other group. The Agric girls always looked across at the boys, and were occasionally rewarded with a sly wink from one of the more confident among the group.
Few people were looking today though. The lines of girls marched forward resolutely. We knew what was awaiting us and no one was looking forward to it. Behind me, I heard Harper gasp as she tripped and I automatically shot out a hand to catch her before she hit the floor. She stumbled for a few paces before regaining her balance and I let go, knowing that Grady had not missed Harper’s near fall. She was so clumsy these days. I was certain this fact was known by all the Agric Supers.
Around a year ago, I had begun to notice the gradual change in Harper. Cass wouldn’t accept it at first, but I saw the early signs. She was quieter, less likely to chat, found it more difficult to complete the long hours required of an Agric worker. Where previously she had joined in the whispered chatter between us, and the stolen glances at the boys as we passed them, now her head remained permanently bowed and she didn’t so much as glance in their direction.
While Cassidy and I had grown stronger, Harper had only seemed more sluggish and depleted in energy by the day. Eventually we had to support her on her return from the fields each night, and tried to switch our greenhouse allocations with her as often as we possibly could, so she could work where it was warmer and duties were light.
Today was Assessment day. It happened every six months without fail, and its purpose was to test the ongoing durability of The Beck workforce. We kept the place running, and without all staff being in prime condition, The Beck risked a complete breakdown. The series of tests we underwent each time included a gruelling physical, a mental health test, and a written examination which tested our knowledge of life and work in The Beck. All three were graded and the results defined what happened to a citizen next.
Promotion to a higher position within your own pod was possible, and carried with it some benefits. Reassignment to an alternative Sector was also possible. Citizens were sometimes moved between the different areas if the Supers felt we were better suited to another role, or if we had gained the necessary experience and knowledge to work at a higher level. In an environment where floods had destroyed huge parts of the country and land was scarce, overpopulation was not an option. Those failing the tests risked demotion to a lower level Sector, or even assignment to Clearance. This was my biggest fear for Harper.
Clearance was the place where citizens ended up when they had outlived their usefulness. It was saved for the elderly, for people who were not able to maintain a useful position in Beck society, for those who were seriously ill and unlikely to get better.
Situated across Black Hill on the far side of The Beck, none of the ordinary citizens were ever permitted to visit Clearance. Only the Governor’s officials and Patrol members on duty were allowed over there. Whatever went on, it all took place over the other side of the hill, completely hidden from view. There was only one thing I knew for certain about Clearance.

No one ever came back.


Get two FREE short stories for the Flow series here!!
The Transfer:

The Storm:
https://BookHip.com/DFNWMV



Break
The Flow Series Book 2 


Broken.

It’s been three months since Quin transferred to Patrol and discovered the terrifying truth about the community she lives in. Citizens of The Beck are disposable and those in charge are capable of terrible cruelty. Vowing to protect those around her, Quin has joined the Resistance. But she knows she is risking everything.

Rebellion of any kind must be secretive and clever. Gathering enough people to fight seems like an impossible task. When those closest to her are directly threatened, Quin knows she has to act. But time is running out. Governance will stop at nothing to protect the world it has worked to build. In the end, Quin must decide how far she is prepared to go to rescue the ones she loves.

Break is the second in the Flow series, which follows Quin as she struggles to carve out a future in the harsh regime she was born into.




Drift
The Flow Series Book 3 


She wanted freedom. But freedom comes at a price.

Quin believed that a life away from The Beck would make her happy. But when a cruel twist of fate forces her to leave sooner than planned, she struggles to come to terms with her new reality. Haunted by memories of the people she left behind, she finds herself wishing she was back in Patrol, with Cam by her side.

Cut off from The Beck, the escapees carve out a new existence on a small island. Tentative bonds are formed, but as disputes surface and rebellion is threatened, Quin quickly realises that their new home isn’t the sanctuary she had imagined. And when one of her fellow citizens is willing to go to desperate measures to save those he loves, he puts the entire community in danger.

As they hatch a daring plan to save themselves, Quin is faced with a terrible choice: protect her friends or follow her heart.

Drift is the third in the Flow series, which follows Quin as she battles to forge a new life in unfamiliar territory without the man she has come to depend on.




Quell
The Flow Series Book 4 


One battle. One chance to change the future. 

Having survived the deadly virus that endangered her new community, Quin is devastated to learn that the same sickness threatens The Beck. With Adams and his Shadow Patrol in charge, Cam and her friends are in mortal danger. 

The rebels know they’re not strong enough to take on The Beck’s government alone. The only way to succeed is to join forces with The Ridge. But their alliance is built on tenuous threads: one wrong move could destroy their hopes forever. 

As Quin steels herself for the final battle, a shocking revelation leaves her wondering what she is willing to sacrifice in the name of freedom. 

Quell is the fourth and final book in the Flow series, which follows Quin and her allies into the ultimate battle to save The Beck. 





Clare Littlemore is a young adult dystopian and sci-fi author who thrives on fictionally destroying the world in as many ways as she possibly can. 

She was born in Durham, in the UK. Her parents were both teachers, and she grew up in a world surrounded by books. She has worked for most of her life as a teacher of English at various high schools in England, where she has shared her passion for books with hundreds of teenagers. In 2013 she began writing her own fiction, got totally hooked, and hasn’t stopped since. 

Clare lives in Warrington in the North West of England with her husband and two children. 





$50 Amazon Gift Card
Follow the tour HERE for special content and a giveaway!





TO PLANT A SINGLE SEED | by Kelsey Ketch #YA #ShortStory #CoverReveal #YABoundBookTours


PURSUING A BETTER TOMORROW | by Blanca De La Rosa #Memoir #AuthorInterview #Giveaway #RABT



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Memoir
Date Published September 2019
Publisher: Angels Fortune Editions

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Although her origins are in Nocedo del Valle, an agricultural village in Orense, a province of Galicia, Spain, Blanca De La Rosa was born in the Dominican Republic in the bosom of a humble family. But fate had something else in store for her.

Pursuing a Better Tomorrow is not just a novel that portrays the history of three generations, but rather an inspiring cross-generational journey from Spain to the United States. The novel details a historical overview and the ideologies of each era where the characters portray the strength of character required to achieve a better tomorrow given the twists, turns, and synchronistic events that shaped their lives.

De La Rosa candidly shares her coming-of-age story of self-discovery as she transitioned from New York City’s projects to corporate America, detailing her personal and professional journey.

This great novel will inspire you to believe in your abilities, dare to dream, and reach for your goals as you pursue a better tomorrow.

Are you ready to embark on this journey?



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Author Interview

#1 – Do You See Writing as a Career? Writing can be a career for some. However, for me writing (creative writing) is a passion. When I write, I feel like I’m creating something. The process consumes my entire life and consumes everything around me. In fact, while writing Pursuing a Better Tomorrow, I got so engrossed in the process that I became extremely insular. I rarely venture outside and the “real world” took a back seat to my writing. As a result, I put on twenty pounds. I did not notice the extra weight until after the book was done. I referred to the extra pounds as ‘book weight’.

#2 – What was the Hardest Part of Your Writing Process? My personal story was the hardest to write as I struggled with what to include/exclude. I did not want to offend anyone or come off as a drama queen.


#3 – Did you have any One Person Who Helped You Out with Your Writing Outside of Your Family? Yes. I had a former coworker read the manuscript and give me feedback on the English version. After I translated into Spanish, I had a young lady from Colombia read the Spanish version and give me her input.


#4 – What is next for your writing? I will be definitely writing another book but have not yet landed on the genre or topic. I’m mulling over some ideas in my head. I have started a ‘Words to Live By’ short stories in which I use old clichés and pair them with a short story that gets to the wisdom and message of the phrase. I may use these stories in a blog and see how it develops from there. Editors hate clichés and I agree they have no business in a novel, but I love clichés. They are succinct and get to the heart of the matter and point.


#5 – Do you have an addiction to reading as well as writing? If so, what are you currently reading? I always have a book that I’m working my way through. I’m currently reading Rachel Maddow’s Blow Out. 


DESCRIBE Your Book in 1 Tweet: Inspiring story of overcoming adversity and never giving up – amazingly detailed with a gripping narrative.


This or That?

#1 - iPod or Mp3? - iPod

#2 – Chocolate or Vanilla? Chocolate

#3 – Mashed Potatoes or French Fries? Fries

#4 – Comedy or Drama? Drama

#5 – Danielle Steel or Nicholas Sparks? Danielle Steel

#6 – Fantasy or Reality? Reality

#7 – Call or Text? Text

#8 – Public School or Home School? Public School

#9 – Coffee or Hot Chocolate Coffee


#10 – eBook or Paperback? Both but primarily eBook





About the Author

 photo Pursuing a Better Tomorrow Author Blanca M. De La Rosa_zpsrryjhggk.jpg
Blanca De La Rosa was born in the Dominican Republic. She grew up in the Projects of the upper west side of Manhattan in New York, during the time before the Hispanic population developed the supportive Latino community which exists today. Although she struggled without support in her cultural and linguistic transition, De La Rosa was able to graduate from Pace University with a Bachelor’s Degree in International Business Management and to establish a successful 34-year career rising through the ranks of Mobil/ExxonMobil Oil Corporation.

During her career, she held numerous positions both domestic and international in nature with increasing responsibility. These assignments took her around the United States, Europe, Central / South America, and Nigeria.

De La Rosa retired from ExxonMobil after 34 years of service. As a Business Development Manager and President of the company’s Employee Resource Group she often represented her company as lead presenter at the Regional and National Scholarship Awards hosted by the Hispanic Heritage Foundation. In addition, she represented her company as host, keynote speaker, and panelist of various events with organizations supported by the company's charity foundation. After all her time in the industry, she says her most rewarding role was serving as mentor to the young employees in her company – guiding them through the corporate maze.

De La Rosa has authored two books: Empower Yourself for an Amazing Career in which she shares career advice drawing heavily from her own successes offering a fresh approach and insight on climbing the corporate ladder, combining practical, common-sense advice with inner wisdom and spirituality, providing strategies to increase the chances of success in the workplace; and Pursuing a Better Tomorrow – En busca de un mañana mejor, spanning more than one hundred years, it is not just a memoir that portrays the history of three generations, but rather an inspiring cross-generational journey from Spain to the US.



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Thursday, January 16, 2020

A PLAYER ROMANCE SERIES | by Mika Lane #MisterHollywood #MisterWrong #MisterFakeDate #ContemporaryRomance #NA #Adult #BookReview #Giveaway #LolasBlogTours


A Player Romance series banner

Thanks for dropping by my stop during the blog tour for A Player Romance series by Mika Lane. This blog tour is organized by Lola's Blog Tours. The blog tour runs from 6 till 19 January. See the tour schedule here.

WARNING: This is NOT my usual variety of book, even New Age.  It is much MUCH spicier/sexier. Reader Beware.

Mister HollywoodMister Hollywood (A Player Romance series #1)
By Mika Lane
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age category: New Adult/ Adult

Blurb:
Sex. Money. Women.
Whenever I want. Wherever I want.
What’s not to love?
Well, me.
Keep your heart out of it. I do.
It’s just a job. A paycheck.
One night, and it’s over. Buh-bye.
Until not-part-of-the-plan Belle Thomas comes along.
Scared. Confused. Sexy as hell.
And pursued by a crazy ex.
I didn’t want that kind of drama messing with my mojo. I have women to f*ck, and money to fill my bank account with.
I promised to bring Belle the pleasure she deserved, but first she had to accept the Player's terms.
You get what you need, and forget we ever met.
Slam dunk.
Until I slipped, and my fatal flaw got the better of me.

Get ready for the gentlemen of Players, West LA’s premier escort agency, famous for making women curl their toes, forget their names, and wish one night would last forever. These men will take you for a ride you’ll never forget—and pleasure that you’ll live to talk about.

Mr. Hollywood is book 1 of a sexy 3-part series that can be read in any order.


You can find Mister Hollywood on Goodreads

You can buy Mister Hollywood here:
- Amazon
- B&N
- Kobo
- iTunes

My Review:

Fan me, please! I loved this entertaining and hot little romantic romp.  Set in Los Angeles, it was a fast-paced, engaging read that I picked up and could not put down. Ms. Lane created loveable and believable characters that made the story. Of course, it didn't hurt that the cover model is one of my two favorites...hehehe. There was lots of sex appeal in this book and the chemistry between Bella and Xander was uber spicy as well as fun and heartfelt.  I mean, who doesn't love that their first date was at the House of Waffles?? :)

The book had a terrific plot that was intriguing and even intense at times. The entire story, beginning to end was character-driven and fast-moving, something I wouldn't have wanted any other way. I highly recommend this book.

5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Thank you to Mika Lane and Lola's Blog Tours for this great book.  I am leaving my review voluntarily and all opinions are my own.


Mister Fake DateMister Fake Date (A Player Romance series #2)
By Mika Lane
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age category: New Adult/ Adult

Blurb:
Sometimes you’ll do anything to get the world off your back. And that includes hiring someone to help.
And lying. So many lies.
I got to where I couldn't tell where they ended, and the truth began.
Will Adams became part of my lie. Actually, he was the lie. The handsomest, sexiest, biggest part. Problem was, he was a lie I couldn't shake.
But after this weekend, he’ll be gone. Forever.
That’s the way it works.
I pay—he delivers.
Game over.
And I’ll go back to my lonely-ass, frozen dinner, Netflix-bingeing Saturday nights.
But until that time comes, he’ll bring me pleasure like I’ve never had. And open up my heart in ways I’d never known.
He helped me see that in pretending to be someone I wasn’t, I could figure out who I really wanted to be.
And that rules are made to be broken.

Get ready for the gentlemen of Players, West LA’s premier escort agency, famous for making women curl their toes, forget their names, and wish one night would last forever. These men will take you for a ride you’ll never forget—and pleasure that you’ll live to talk about.

Mr. Fake Date is book 2 of a sexy 3-part series that can be read in any order.


You can find Mister Fake Date on Goodreads

You can buy Mister Fake Date here:
- Amazon
- B&N
- Kobo
- iTunes

Mister WrongMister Wrong (A Player Romance series #3)
By Mika Lane
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age category: New Adult/ Adult

Blurb:
Dove Delaney
I needed a little… treat. Some relief, you might say.
Life was crazy and sometimes a girl has to do something nice for herself.
And I’m not talking about new shoes.
Or eating chocolate.
And James—well, he’s the best in the business. He became my relief. My escape. My purest pleasure.
The problem was, it was only supposed to be one night
But now I want more. So does he.
And that’s just not possible.

James Walker
Another day, another beautiful woman.
It was what I did. I enjoyed it, and I was damn good at it.
I made my clients happy, had some fun myself, and then got the hell out.
That’s how it works for us Players.
But when Dove waltzes in, it was anything but another day at the office.
And she was anything but another client.
Her curvy booty and rockabilly style threatened to soften my hard heart.
And harden something else…
I wanted more. And I always got what I wanted.

Get ready for the gentlemen of Players, West LA’s premier escort agency, famous for making women curl their toes, forget their names, and wish one night would last forever. These men will take you for a ride you’ll never forget—and pleasure that you’ll live to talk about.

Mr. Wrong is book 3 of a sexy 3-part series that can be read in any order.


You can find Mister Wrong on Goodreads

You can buy Mister Wrong here:
- Amazon
- B&N
- Kobo


On the site Many Books you can read an interview with Mika about this series and Mister Hollywood here.

Mika LaneAbout the Author:
Writing has been a passion of mine since, well, forever (my first book was "The Day I Ate the Milkyway,” a true fourth-grade masterpiece), but steamy romance is now what gives purpose to my days and nights. I live in magical Northern California with my own handsome alpha dude, sometimes known as Mr. Mika Lane, and an evil cat named Bill. A lover of shiny things, I’ve been known to try to new recipes on unsuspecting friends, find hiding places so I can read undisturbed, and spend my last dollar on a plane ticket somewhere. I also drink cheap champagne and have way too many shoes.

I'll always promise you a hot, sexy romp with kick-ass but imperfect heroines, and some version of a modern-day happily ever after.

I LOVE to hear from readers when I’m not dreaming up naughty tales to share. Join my Insider Group so we can get to know each other better.

You can find and contact Mika Lane here:
- Amazon

Giveaway
There is a tour wide giveaway for the blog tour of A Player Romance series. One winner will win signed paperback of Mister Hollywood, Mister Fake Date and Mister Wrong (US Only).

For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below: