Sunday, May 24, 2015

Shadows of Valor is FREE for all on May 24-25! (Kindle only)

Shadows of Valor (Book 1)
Four years ago, Edwin’s father was slain by Verackan raiders, intent on plundering the Orescan heartland to supplement their own waning resources.

Now seventeen and intent on vengeance, Edwin runs away from home to join the Orescan Army. Soon, he finds himself a Probationary Recruit, not in the Army, but in the Special Air Corps. Through a combination of natural and technologically enhanced gifts, this elite and secretive organization battles the Verackans from the shadows.

As Edwin explores the full potential of his gift, a new objective begins to take hold… ending the Verackan threat for all time.

Free for all on Kindle, May 24-25!

Now on Kindle Unlimited!
Book 3 in this trilogy is up for pre-order and set to release on June 17th. So now's a great time to start reading.

Take a look at the other books this trilogy:

Forgotten Valor (Shadows of Valor Book 2)
Continuing the story began in Shadows of Valor, Edwin is stuck back at SAC headquarters reeling from the effects of his first mission. Haunted by nightmares and recovering from a training injury, Edwin desperately seeks a solution to the horrors that blast him awake each night without fail. At the same time, war waits for no man, and the Commander assigns him a new mission, one that will take him into the heart of Veracka.

Meanwhile, Peggy is offered an ultimatum: accept enhancement or watch as Edwin is sent alone on a mission he may not survive without her. Disillusioned and suspecting her superiors intended this outcome from the beginning, Peggy must face the most difficult decision she's ever had to make. And, even if she takes the plunge, the effort may be too little, too late.

Now on Kindle Unlimited!


Fight for Valor (Shadows of Valor Book 3)
Release Date June 17, 2015 

Edwin's long awaited awakening reveals more than he'd ever expected, even before his self-inflicted memory loss. Armed with new knowledge, he is torn between loyalty for Oresca and new, unavoidable obligations to Veracka and Princess Dorothea.

Peggy, finally coming to terms with her enhancement, faces a new dilemma. Edwin seems to have returned to himself, but she knows he's hiding something. She wants to trust him, but can she?
Now on Kindle Unlimited!

Friday, May 22, 2015

M9B Friday Reveal: Cover Reveal for Serpentine by Cindy Pon with Giveaway #M9BFridayReveals


Welcome to this week’s M9B Friday Reveal!
This week, we are revealing the cover for
Serpentine by Cindy Pon
presented byMonth9Books!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!


SERPENTINE is a sweeping fantasy set in the ancient Kingdom of Xia and inspired by the rich history of Chinese mythology. 
Lush with details from Chinese folklore, SERPENTINE tells the coming of age story of Skybright, a young girl who worries about her growing otherness. As she turns sixteen, Skybright notices troubling changes. By day, she is a companion and handmaid to the youngest daughter of a very wealthy family. But nighttime brings with it a darkness that not even daybreak can quell. 
When her plight can no longer be denied, Skybright learns that despite a dark destiny, she must struggle to retain her sense of self – even as she falls in love for the first time. 
Vivid worldbuilding, incendiary romance, heart-pounding action, and characters that will win you over--I highly recommend Serpentine.Cinda Williams Chima, best-selling author of the Seven Realms and Heir Chronicles fantasy novels 
"Serpentine is unique and surprising, with a beautifully-drawn fantasy world that sucked me right in! I love Skybright's transformative power, and how she learns to take charge of it." ~Kristin Cashore, NYT Bestseller of the Graceling Realm Series 
"Serpentine's world oozes with lush details and rich lore, and the characters crackle with life. This is one story that you'll want to lose yourself in." ~ Marie Lu, New York Times bestselling author of Legend and The Young Elites
add to goodreads
Title: Serpentine
Publication date: September 8, 2015
Publisher: Month9Books, LLC.
Author: Cindy Pon
Pre-order Links:
Cindy Pon

Cindy Pon is the author of Silver Phoenix (Greenwillow, 2009), which was named one of the Top Ten Fantasy and Science Fiction Books for Youth by the American Library Association's Booklist, and one of 2009′s best Fantasy, Science Fiction and Horror by VOYA. The sequel to Silver Phoenix, titled Fury of the Phoenix, was released in April 2011. Serpentine, the first title in her next Xia duology, will be published by Month9Books in September 2015. She is the co-founder of Diversity in YA with Malinda Lo and on the advisory board of We Need Diverse Books. Cindy is also a Chinese brush painting student of over a decade. Visit her website at

Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr | Goodreads

Complete the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win!
The book will be sent upon its release.


Thursday, May 21, 2015

M9B Two for Thursday Book Blitz – Daughter of Chaos by Jen McConnel and Predator by Janice Gable Bashman with Giveaway #T4T


Hello and welcome to this week’s Two for Thursday Book Blitz #T4T
presented by Month9books/Tantrum Books!
Today, we will be showcasing two titles that may tickle your fancy,
and we’ll share what readers have to say about these titles!
You just might find your next read!
This week, #T4T presents to you:
Daughter of Chaos by Jen McConnel and
Predator by Janice Gable Bashman!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
Witches must choose the path they will follow, and Darlena Agara is no exception. She’s been putting it off long enough, and in her case, ignoring it has not made it go away. In a moment of frustration, Darlena chooses to follow Red Magic, figuring she had outsmarted the powers that be, since there’s no such thing as Red Magic. But alas, Darlena’s wrong (again) and she becomes a newly declared Red Witch. 
Her friends are shocked and her parents horrified by the choice Darlena has made. As a Red Witch, she now governs one third of the world’s chaos. She is the walking personification of pandemonium, turmoil, and bedlam, just as the patrons of Red Magic would have it to be. 
But Darlena believes there must be more to Red Magic than chaos and destruction, and she sets out on a journey to achieve balance. Only doing so puts her at odds with the dark goddess Hecate, who simply will not allow Darlena to quit. She encourages Darlena to embrace who and what she is and to leave good magic to the good witches. If only Darlena could, life would be simple, and she would not be the Daughter of Chaos. 
DAUGHTER OF CHAOS is the first in a YA paranormal trilogy.
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At the beginning, this novel is reminiscent of other popular fantasy novels like the Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling and the Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan, but it quickly takes on a life of its own that will appeal to science fiction, fantasy, and young adult fans alike. Darlena’s struggles mirror issues that many teens face, making her a relate-able and likable main character. This is a title with wide appeal that will fly off the shelves.” – Voya Magazine

“Daughter of Chaos by Jen McConnel is a refreshing twist to the YA paranormal genre!”Dianne, Tome Tender

“Witches and Greek gods! This seriously couldn't get any better.” – Kelly Hashway, Author

Jen McConnel

Jen McConnel now lives and writes in the beautiful state of North Carolina. When she isn't crafting worlds of fiction, she teaches writing composition at a community college. Once upon a time, she was a middle school teacher, a librarian, and a bookseller, but those are stories for another time.

Author Links: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


The hunt is on! Sixteen-year-old Bree Sunderland must inject herself with an untested version of her father’s gene therapy to become a werewolf in order to stop a corrupt group of mercenaries from creating a team of unstoppable lycanthrope soldiers. 
When Bree went with her scientist father to Ireland, she thought it would be a vacation to study bog bodies. She never expected to fall in love with a mysterious young Irishman and certainly never expected to become the kind of monster her father said only existed in nightmares. Dr. Sunderland discovers that lycanthropy was not a supernatural curse but rather a genetic mutation. When they return home, her dad continues his research, but the military wants to turn that research into a bio weapons program and rogue soldiers want to steal the research to turn themselves into unstoppable killing machines. 
Bree’s boyfriend Liam surprises her with a visit to the United States, but there are darker surprises in store for both of them. As evil forces hunt those she loves, Bree must become an even more dangerous hunter to save them all. 
Bree will become the thing she hates, to protect those she loves! 
'Predator' gives the werewolf legend a couple of new spins by introducing the Benandanti (an actual folkloric belief that certain families of Italy and Livonia were werewolves who fought against evil), as well as a modern scientific approach to mutation and the science of transgenics.

add to goodreads


“Predator is a fast-paced, creepy page-turner! Bashman had me at the opening sentence and she's still got me. I want more!”Nancy Holder, New York Times Bestselling Author, The Rules

“Every twist and fascinating revelation fell into place smoothly, with an ending that will leave readers wanting more. With this kind of originality on the page, it is exciting to speculate at the surprises Bashman will unveil next.”Suspense Magazine

“Predator" by Janice Gable Bashman is clean-teen fiction at it's best. It's smart, scary and suspenseful. The main character Bree is a super positive role model for teen girls--no mater what shape she takes” Jennifer, Author

Janice Gable Bashman

Janice Gable Bashman is the Bram Stoker nominated author of Wanted Undead or Alive and Predator. She is managing editor of the The Big Thrill (International Thriller Writers’ ezine). Janice lives with her family in the Philadelphia area, where she at work on her next novel. Visit her at

Author Links: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!


Sunday, May 17, 2015

Exercise and editing, a great combo and here is why...

Today I went for a run. It's been a while since the last time I've done that. Usually, I practice karate or take walks, but today I ran. It was invigorating, even though I'm sorely out of practice. What does this have to do with editing?

Well, a lot actually. First off, exercise is an energizer, particularly helpful if you're going to be something sedentary and tedious (like editing). It's also a mood booster, so you'll feel good and that might help motivate you to get to work (cheerfully). And of course, it's good for your body. So you can stay healthy, not only fit, but well (As in not sick as often, and who wants to edit when they're sick? Not me.).

So, I ran today, and now it's time to edit.

I'm feeling good.
I'm motivated.
I'm energized.

What have you done today? Answer in the comments...

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Talk about writing excuses...

I just spent three hours translating an article about the NBA on Duolingo from Spanish to English. Sigh...

The good news is that before I got caught up in the translations I wrapped up my third round of edits for Fight for Valor! (Plus, I suppose I learned a lot of neat sports terms en EspaƱol).

So, yeah, soon.  :-)

I'm likely to post this for pre-order on Amazon this weekend. I want to look at it once more, but I think I've pretty much extracted and eliminated all the errors.  I'm still a bit worried about the romantic scenes. I don't take them very far, but they're there, and I'm rather self-conscious about them. I want to clean them up, so to speak, but then again, they aren't that bad, and one of the major interactions is during one. I'm afraid the whole conversation would fall flat without the cuddling and canoodling.

Friday, May 8, 2015

M9B Friday Reveal: Author Spotlight - Lisa T. Cresswell with Giveaway #M9BFridayReveals

Welcome to this week’s M9B Friday Reveal!
This week, we are featuring
Lisa T. Cresswell, author of Vessel
presented by Month9Books!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
Lisa T. Cresswell
Meet Lisa T. Cresswell!
Lightening Round Questions

Twitter or Facebook? Twitter by far!
Favorite Superhero? Hulk
Favorite TV show? Um, I don't watch tv anymore.
Sweet or Salty? Sweet
Coke or Pepsi? Pepsi before I gave it up; now its coffee :)
Any Phobias? Heights/fear of falling
Song you can’t get enough of right now? They play it way too much, but
I still like Uptown Funk.
Who is your ultimate Book Boyfriend? That's tough. I'm sure Peta's up
there. I'll get back to you on that one ;)
What are you reading right now or what's on your TBR? I want to read
the latest Neil Gaiman book. Always!
Fall Movie you’re most looking forward to? It's really next winter,
but it's STAR WARS!!
Lisa, like most writers, began scribbling silly notes, stories, and poems at a very young age. Born in North Carolina, the South proved fertile ground to her imagination with its beautiful white sand beaches and red earth. In fifth grade, she wrote, directed and starred in a play “The Queen of the Nile” at school, despite the fact that she is decidedly un-Egyptian looking. Perhaps that’s why she went on to become a real life archaeologist? 
Unexpectedly transplanted to Idaho as a teenager, Lisa learned to love the desert and the wide open skies out West. This is where her interest in cultures, both ancient and living, really took root, and she became a Great Basin archaeologist. However, the itch to write never did leave for long. Her first books became the middle grade fantasy trilogy, The Storyteller Series. Her first traditionally published work, Hush Puppy, is now available from Featherweight Press. 
Lisa still lives in Idaho with her family and a menagerie of furry critters that includes way too many llamas!
Connect with the Author:  Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads
The sun exploded on On April 18, 2112 in a Class X solar storm the likes of which humankind had never seen. 
They had exactly nineteen minutes to decide what to do next. 
They had nineteen minutes until a geomagnetic wave washed over the Earth, frying every electrical device created by humans, blacking out entire continents, and every satellite in their sky. 
Nineteen minutes to say goodbye to the world they knew, forever, and to prepare for a new Earth, a new Sun.

Generations after solar storms destroyed nearly all human technology on Earth, humans reverted to a middle ages-like existence, books are burned as heresy, and all knowledge of the remaining technology is kept hidden by a privileged few called the Reticents.
Alana, a disfigured slave girl, and Recks, a traveling minstrel and sometimes-thief, join forces to bring knowledge and books back to the human race. But when Alana is chosen against her will to be the Vessel, the living repository for all human knowledge, she must find the strength to be what the world needs even if it’s the last thing she wants.
add to goodreadsTitle: Vessel
Publication date: May 2014
Publisher: Month9Books, LLC.
Author: Lisa T. Cresswell
Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!
The book will be sent upon the titles release.


Sunday, May 3, 2015

The Three Qualities of a Good Poem

So, I've had a brief urge to write and share poetry this week. Now, I'd like to talk about what I like in a good poem.

I think it really comes down to a few elements. One, the poem needs to have a good cadence. Two, the poem needs to resonate with me on a personal level. And three, the poem needs to evoke an emotion. Poetry doesn't need to rhyme to be good, although I do dig a good rhyme. Anyway, on the occasion that I do review poetry, these are the things I look for.

1. Cadence
Think of poetry as a form of musical expression. There may or may not be tunes associated with the words, but they should lend themselves to be spoken in a certain rhythm. I think some of the best poetry does this almost without the reader noticing that they are falling into a pattern. The best poetry is written such that the reader is pulled in and almost feels the beat in their heart. It's satisfying on a primal level. This is something The Raven, by Edgar Allen Poe, does very well.

This is the copy of The Raven that I own on my Kindle. It's perpetually free, so I hope you grab a copy. When I was in middle school, I memorized it for English class. Of course, now I only remember the tag line, but it was pretty fun learning and reciting it.

2. Resonance
Besides being musical and lending itself to a rhythm, poetry needs to resonate with the reader on a personal level. By this, I mean that the poem needs to be relatable. The poetry I like most is that which focuses on things I'm familiar with, like nature, people, and animals. If I can picture what's described in the poem, the words come alive. That doesn't mean the poem must be exactly related to my experiences. After all, poetry is a window, not into my soul, but the poet's. A good poem draws the window. A lasting poem does it in such a way that time has no meaning. On that note, sometimes poetry is disguised as something else, a play, for example.

Here's one that's pretty good, The Tempest by William Shakespeare. So what resonated with me? The insults of course. No one throws a good insult in quite as elegant a fashion as Shakespeare. And the way the words flow, jabs and all, definitely qualify as poetic, in my opinion. To be completely honest, I haven't actually read The Tempest, but I did attend the play last year. So, I guess that qualifies as having been read to. :-)

And yes, he also wrote actual poetry. Here's a link to Shakespeare Poetry on Amazon.

3. Emotion
This is the vital link. In both of the previous examples, though I didn't mention it, emotion is a key
player. In The Raven, a growing sense of dread permeates the poem. In The Tempest, humor is the main player, but there's also a touch of romance. A good poem evokes the intended emotions: fear, love, betrayal, dread, laughter. Flowery words or no, rhyme or no, without some element of emotion, a poem is just a jumble of words on a page. Even a simple haiku can do this. In fact, haiku, with it's limits, forces the poet to pack everything that makes a poem good into a tiny package.

Here's a link to some  Haiku on Amazon. I really wanted to recommend a collection called Tennessee Haiku by Charles Hooper, which I picked up on Smashwords, but I can't seem to find it. I have, however, found a Charles Hooper on Amazon, who just might be the same guy. So, check out Charles Hooper's books and let me know what you think. And here's a link to free poetry on Smashwords.

To end, I'd like to feature the work of an author I've interacted with before. You may remember Augustine Sam from an interview I did with him some time back. Anyway, he has a lovely book of poetry that I think does well in all three of these categories.

I'd love to hear what kind of poetry you enjoy. Let me know in the comments.