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Malpractice! The Novel by William Louis Harvey @sexandlawnovel

The sign on the wall adjacent to the doors of the courtroom read, “Courtroom Six: The Honorable Monica Davies.” He pushed through the door, noting that the seats for observers were almost empty. Since the trial had not started and the jury had not been chosen, this was not surprising. Paul Butler was used to large audiences and had a reputation for courtroom theatrics and occasional trial fireworks.
Then he looked at the plaintiff and defense tables inside the barrier in front of the seats. At his (the plaintiff’s) table sat Stan Murphy, one of his partners, and Cleo Jones, a beautiful and exotic young associate at his law firm. This was to be the first big trial for her. Both Murphy and Jones had smiles of relief on their faces when they saw him enter.
Charles Quick, at the defense table, gave a small, disappointed wave to Paul on seeing that he had beaten the judge to the courtroom. (p. 15) Malpractice! the Novel

Malpractice_Cover_sansback1
Malpractice! the Novel is an electrifying work of realistic fiction written by an anonymous insider who worked the frontlines of the clash between the medical and legal professions during the California medical malpractice insurance crisis, which began in the 1960s. William Louis Harvey, a nom de plume, takes readers on a steamy adventure involving power, sex, lies and money in this candid courtroom suspense thriller. While Malpractice! The Novel, is a work of fiction, it is rooted in the personal experiences and firsthand knowledge the author acquired during his decades of working inside the medical industry. California in the 1960s and first half of the 1970s had already seen a dramatic increase in medical malpractice lawsuits as juries awarded progressively higher sums for “pain and suffering,” a category that had no concrete limits and caused physicians’ insurance premiums for malpractice to skyrocket. Harvey chaired a committee that reviewed all malpractice claims involving a major California hospital during the crisis. Details of some of the cases he experienced are engraved in his memory, and small portions of these tidbits find their way into Malpractice! the Novel, his first novel. Roused by a recent New York Times article about the American male novelist’s fear of addressing sexuality, Harvey interleaved honest sex histories for his novel’s characters, adding a titillating sensuality to the suspenseful novel.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Steamy Courtroom Drama
Rating – R
More details about the author
Connect with William Louis Harvey on Facebook & Twitter


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5 Things You Should Know About #Romance #Novel "Dance For A Dead Princess" by Deborah Hawkins

5 Things You Should Know About "Dance For A Dead Princess"

1. Dance for a Dead Princess is the English translation of the French composer Maurice Ravel’s piano solo, Pavane Pour Une Infante Defunte. He later made an orchestral version, transcribing its ravishing and haunting melody into an unforgettable French horn solo. In Dance, Nicholas Carey is bitter towards his father, the Seventeenth Duke, because Christopher Carey forced Nicholas to leave his concert pianist mother and come to England at age fourteen after his older half-brother died. Nicholas didn’t want to be a duke. He wanted to follow in his mother’s footsteps. Now, haunted by the loss of his beloved mother, his adored wife, and his close friend, Princess Diana, Nicholas sits up late into the night playing the Pavane to ease his heartbreak. Taylor, who doesn’t like Nicholas at the beginning of the book, only begins to soften toward
him as she listens to his music.
2. Dance for A Dead Princess is based upon a historical fact. In January 1997, Princess Diana received a phone call telling her she would be assassinated. She made a video tape naming the person on the call and gave it to a close friend in America for safekeeping. It has never been found.
3. Dance for a Dead Princess is really two complete love stories and two complete mysteries in one book. The stories have important parallels. Thomas Carey, who became the first duke near the end of his life, was the son of a well-to-do and ambitious sheep farmer from the village of Burnham in Kent. He sent his son Thomas to Henry VIII’s court to be trained as a knight. Eventually Thomas and Henry would fall in love with heiress Elizabeth Howell; and Henry would circulate rumors Thomas murdered his wife to be free to seek Elizabeth’s hand. Similarly, Deborah Downing’s death under mysterious circumstances at the Abbey in 1994 and the coroner’s inquest led to gossip Nicholas was responsible. That gossip reaches new heights when his ward Lucy is found dead on a night when Nicholas has no alibi and when Taylor has just discovered
Nicholas cannot sell the Abbey as long as Lucy is alive.
4. Hever Castle, the ancestral home of Anne Boleyn, was the model for Burnham Abbey. Hever is now a bed and breakfast.
5. My favorite scene in the book is the one in which Nicholas comes to Taylor’s hotel to comfort her after her former fiancé, Chris Hunter, invites her to dinner only to tell her he is marrying a younger lawyer at their firm in just a few weeks. Nicholas brings muffins and coffee to a very heart broken and hung-over Taylor and persuades her to spend the day shopping with him and seeing the sights of London. He reminds her, “The women in my life, particularly Diana, had a knack for getting their hearts broken. I’m the steady shoulder to cry on.”
He takes her to Garrads, the famous London crown jewelers, to pick out a gift for his girlfriend, the American actress, Ami Hendria. Ami is furious with Nicholas because he is neglecting her for Taylor. Nicholas tells Taylor that Diana always helped him pick out peace offerings for his girlfriends and shows her the Carey family tiara that Deborah wore on their wedding day. When Taylor refuses to try it on, Nicholas observes she is the only woman in the world who would say no to that offer.
http://www.orangeberrybooktours.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/DanceForADeadPrincess.jpg
In January 1997, Princess Diana received a phone call telling her she would be assassinated. She recorded the information on a secret video tape, naming her killer and gave it to a trusted friend in America for safekeeping. It has never been found.
Diana's close friend, Nicholas Carey, the 18th Duke of Burnham and second richest man in England, has vowed to find the tape and expose her killer. After years of searching, he discovers Diana gave the tape to British socialite Mari Cuniff, who died in New York under mysterious circumstances. He believes Wall Street attorney Taylor Collins, the executor of Mari's estate, has possession of it. He lures Taylor to England by promising to sell his ancestral home in Kent, Burnham Abbey, to one of her clients, a boarding school for American girls. Nicholas has dated actresses and models since the death of his wife, ten years earlier, and has no interest in falling in love again. But he is immediately and unexpectedly overwhelmed with feelings for Taylor at their first meeting.
Taylor, unaware that Diana's tape is in her long-time friend and client's estate and nursing her hurt over her broken engagement to a fellow attorney in her firm, brands Nicholas supremely spoiled and selfish. She is in a hurry to finish the sale of the Abbey and return to New York. But while working in the Abbey's library, Taylor uncovers the diary of Thomas Carey, a knight at the court of Henry VIII and the first Duke of Burnham.
As she reads Thomas' agonizing struggle to save the love of his life and the mother of his child from being forced to become Henry's mistress, she begins to see Nicholas in a new light as he battles to save his sixteen-year-old ward Lucy, who is desperately unhappy and addicted to cocaine. But just as Taylor's feelings for Nicholas become clear and at the moment she realizes she is in possession of Diana's voice from the grave, she learns that Nicholas may be Lucy's father and responsible for his wife's death at the Abbey at the time of Lucy's birth. When Nicholas is arrested for Lucy's murder and taken to Wandsworth Prison, Taylor sets out to learn the truth about Nicholas, his late wife, and the death of the Princess of Wales.
Dance for A Dead Princess is a the story of two great loves that created and preserved a family that has lasted for five hundred years.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Contemporary Romance,Mystery
Rating – G
More details about the author
Connect with Deborah Hawkins on Facebook 

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The Forgotten Child by Lorhainne Eckhart @LEckhart

“Please sit down, Emily.” He extended out the flat of his hand, very much in control.

“Ah, thank you.” She perched on the edge of the soft leather seat across from a man who was too damn good to look at—a man obviously comfortable in his own skin.

Hardness set his jaw as he studied her. The tick of the wall clock seemed to echo in the silence, and Emily squirmed in her seat. Why was he looking at her like that? Maybe it was her outrageous entrance and he was wondering what kind of kook she was, whether he could entrust her with his child. Yes, that had to be it.

She swallowed hard. “I’m Emily Nelson; I talked to you yesterday on the phone about the job.”

He blinked before closing those exquisite eyes, as if he’d forgotten the reason she was here. When he opened them again, his hard judgmental expression seemed to have softened a bit.

Again he extended his large hand, taking hers in a firm grip. Just the touch of his solid calloused hand and the secure squeeze was enough to teeter her nerves back to that awkward woman at the door. She wondered what it would be like to have a man like this run his hands over you. She snatched her hand back before her face burned any brighter. Finally, he introduced himself. “The name’s Brad Friessen.” Emily kept quiet. He didn’t run on with his words. He must be a deep thinker, a doer. She could relate to that… but not to him. Her sly eyes glanced down at his left hand: no gold band, no white line, no wife or significant other. Or maybe he was one of those arrogant guys who wouldn’t wear a ring, a lady’s man. He had the looks and the attitude. Now was the time to ask about the woman who answered the phone when she called. Who was she?

“This is a working ranch I run, and I need a woman to look after my son. I’m old fashioned in my values. Children should be at home, not stuck in daycare. I’m looking for someone who’s comfortable in a kitchen and looking after children: a role that should come natural to a woman. I don’t want someone who’s got the phone stuck to their ear half the day. It’s a decent job and good pay; $500 a week, room and board, and includes all your meals.”

Her heart sank about the same time the bottom dropped out of her stomach. It was too good to be true. She wanted to cry. “But I… I have a little girl, I didn’t realize–”

His face hardened and he looked away. For some reason he was angry with her… no, furious. Emily didn’t know what to say when he let out a heavy sigh. He closed his eyes, rubbing his hand over the light brown shadow that appeared over his jaw. Then he faced her again, with those deep brown eyes now turned to steel. Emily saw that he could be a hard man.

Lorhainne Eckhart

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Genre – Contemporary Western Romance

Rating – PG

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Along The Watchtower by David Litwack @DavidLitwack

The elevator dinged and the doors slid open. In less than a minute, I found myself in physical therapy. Like the rest of the hospital, the room was green-tile sterile, but someone had made an effort to cheer it up. Porcelain clowns lined the windowsill. Stuffed circus animals—lions and elephants and a family of monkeys—surrounded the rack that held the free weights. And a variety of fresh-cut flowers had been set in mugs in the cup holder for each exercise bicycle and treadmill. Later, I’d learn from Ralph that Becky kept them fresh, paying for them out of her own pocket. He said she’d deny it, but he’d seen her sneak in on more than one Monday morning with an armful.

Fresh-cut flowers. Mom used to get them every Monday as well, to brighten up the gingerbread house. But after Dad died, she started leaving them too long, not replacing them until they’d decayed so badly they smelled. After Joey died, she stopped buying them altogether.

The girl I met in the courtyard stood over a rolling aluminum table, organizing things I didn’t much like the look of. She was sufficiently absorbed that she didn’t notice us until Ralph called out.

“Afternoon, Becky. Brought you some fresh meat.”

She turned and grinned. “Always love a new victim.”

“Great. I’ll leave you two alone. Sounds like you need some privacy.”

After he left, she went back to finishing her preparations, making me wait. Finally, she came over and extended a hand.

“We already met, but let’s make it official. You’re Lt. Williams, but I can call you Freddie. I’m your worst nightmare, but you can call me Becky.”

I reached out and shook her hand. She didn’t seem scary.

“Ralph says you’re the best, that if anybody can bring me back, you can.”

“Ralph’s wrong. I’m just the guide. You’re going to do most of the work.”

“But are you the best?”

“Let’s say I haven’t lost one yet.”

“So I’ll be back on the basketball court in no time.”

Her grin vanished. She grabbed a chair, dragged it over and sat next to me.

“We’re going to be spending a lot of time together, Freddie, so we need to be straight with each other, right from the outset. My goal is to get you back to as normal a life as possible. If you work hard, I’ll have you out of that wheelchair and on crutches in a month. A month after that, maybe a cane. Beyond that, we’ll see. I make no promises other than to work as hard as you will.”

She stared at me. I stared back, captivated by my reflection in her gray-green eyes. She blinked first and went back to the rolling table.

. . . . . . .

She sat down again and undid the Velcro from my brace.

I winced. I hadn’t looked at my leg much since my peek the week before. The incision was less angry and the oozing had stopped. But what shocked me were the muscles. Where once I had bulges, now there were hollows. Not the leg of an athlete or soldier. Not the leg of a guy who might someday dunk. The leg of an invalid. Becky’s words rattled around in my brain. Crutches, then a cane. After that, we’ll see.

“It may not be pretty,” she said, as if she’d read my mind, “but it’s yours. Take a good look. Let it motivate you when you start making progress. And trust me, you will make progress.”

She squeezed some ointment from a tube onto her hands and rubbed them together.

“This will feel a little cold.”

She spread the ointment, swirling her fingertips over what had once been my quad. When she started the e-stim treatment, I felt the muscle spasm and contract involuntarily, a strange but not entirely unpleasant feeling. As she slid the wand around, humming along to its buzz, I noticed her touch more than the current.

She spoke out of nowhere. “I read the report. Says you have no family.”

I kept staring at her making figure-eights on my leg.

“Is that right?” she said.

I nodded.

“What happened?”

“I was born an orphan.”

She turned off the e-stim and looked up at me.

“Want to talk about it?”

“No.”

“Ralph said you don’t talk much.”

“I talk when I want to. I don’t want to talk now.”

“Fine with me.” She resumed the treatment, hummed a few more bars, and then spoke without looking up. “Ralph was right about another thing.”

“What’s that?”

“You are a hard case.”

She was quiet after that, going about her job while I focused on the clowns at the windowsill. Every now and then, I’d sneak a look at her. A beautiful, happy optimist. But she’d never lived my life.

Crutches and a cane. After that, we’ll see. I was different from her—a realist. I knew what “we’ll see” meant. I’d need more than physical therapy to bring me back. I’d need a miracle.

AlongtheWatchtower

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Genre – Contemporary Fiction, Fantasy

Rating – PG

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Website http://www.davidlitwack.com

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The Seacrest by Aaron Paul Lazar #TheSeacrest @aplazar

Chapter 1

July 2, 2013

Life can change in the blink of an eye. This blink came when a cop car cruised up The Seacrest’s white shell driveway on a hot Saturday in July.

I’ll never forget the moment. You know how folks remember where they were when John Lennon died? Or when President Kennedy was assassinated? It was like that, every detail stamped into my brain, forever.

A fresh breeze laden with the scent of the sea rustled blue flowers in a nearby hydrangea hedge. Hot and sweaty, I stood in the blazing sun, feeling like a fool. I’d just finished weed wacking around the paddock fence posts. Unfortunately, said weed wacker had spooked Libby Vanderhorn’s favorite mare, Serendipity, who I secretly called Dippy, because she was such a loose cannon. She’d bucked three times and knocking down several fence boards. Libby was a good rider, but this time she’d landed in a sprawling heap on the soft dirt, swearing at me.

The boss’s gorgeous, stuck-up daughter didn’t mince words, and the sting of her accusations still sounded in my head. How stupid can you be, Finn? What’s wrong with you?

Libby’s father held great power on Cape Cod. Rudolph Vanderhorn sat on so many boards, I’d lost count. His father’s fish canning company made a fortune back in the eighties, and he and his daughter had enjoyed the spoils ever since.

I stooped to pick up a hammer from my toolbox, planning to reattach the fence boards before any of Libby’s horses got hurt on the protruding nails. Curious now, I watched the Brewster Police car circle the long drive, heading toward the mansion. The local authorities stopped by every few days to discuss town matters with my boss. But today the blue light was flashing, which didn’t look like a casual visit.

A shudder went through me, and I turned cold. Something bad had happened. I sensed it.

The front door opened, and Rudy watched them approach, one hand shading the sun from his eyes. Like a majestic lion, he stood broad-shouldered and strong, his longish white hair lifting in the sea breeze.

Libby stopped hosing down her big white mare, who thankfully hadn’t hurt herself in the fit she’d thrown earlier. The horse snorted and rubbed her big head against her owner’s arm as if to scratch an itch. Long, dark hair blew around Libby’s face, and she stared with open curiosity at the cruiser, rhythmically combing her fingers through the mare’s curly mane.

Time froze.

I stood still, gripping the hammer, studying the patrol car as it drove past the front porch with its impressive columns and portico. It didn’t stop for Rudy, but passed the six-car garage, followed the driveway to the barn, and rolled to a stop ten feet from me, lights still flashing.

Police Chief Kramer and Deputy Lowell stepped out and ambled toward me, their eyes somber.

I dropped the hammer, letting it thud to the grass near my feet.

“Finn?” Kramer said, approaching slowly. “I’m afraid we have bad news.”

There is nothing worse than hearing that bad news is about to be delivered. My brain went wild, imagining the worst scenarios. But somehow I didn’t quite picture what he was about to tell me.

“There’s been an accident,” Kramer said.

Lowell, a high school football star in his day, kicked the dirt at the edge of the path. “Car went over the cliffs,” he said, avoiding my eyes.

“For God’s sake, guys.” I looked from Kramer to Lowell. “Who was in the car?”

Kramer pulled out a piece of paper. “I regret to inform you that your wife, Cora Mae McGraw, and your brother, Jaxson Robert McGraw, have been killed in a vehicular accident.”

Deputy Lowell touched my sleeve, then awkwardly stepped back. “We’re real sorry, Finn.”

“Car went into the ocean,” Kramer said. “We believe they were dead on impact.”

I stared at them, numbness creeping up my spine. “What the hell?”

“Er, look, if there’s anything we can do…” Lowell seemed remorseful, and he offered a hand when I lost my balance and grabbed for the fence.

Libby and her father appeared at my side in seconds, but in the dreamlike state of denial and shock, I caught only brief snatches of their words, as if the wind had grabbed them, teasing me with the bits and pieces.

“What happened?”

“Bad accident.”

“She died?”

Who was with her?”

And so on.

Libby guided me across the lawn and around back to the mansion’s cavernous kitchen. I leaned woodenly against the refrigerator while the family’s beloved cook, Fritzi, bustled her big, ample self about the kitchen making coffee and pushing fresh corn muffins at the officers.

Someone guided me into a chair. I sat, dazed and unmoving. The voices warbled around me and now my brain began to pick through the new knowledge, still not comprehending.

Cora’s dead?

It wasn’t real. Couldn’t be real.

Jax is dead?

I hadn’t seen my brother in ten years.

Ten years since I’d even talked to him. I sometimes almost drove past the blueberry farm, thinking of my old life. But I never actually stopped there.

Ten years since my parents died in that fire. Since I lost my little sister, Eva. Ten years since my family burned because of that cigarette smoldering in the couch.

Ten freaking years.

I didn’t even know what Jax looked like anymore. Had he lost hair? Gained weight? Turned prematurely gray like our father did at age thirty?

Ten years.

A shudder passed through me. A great gulping sound sputtered from my throat. I think I started to hyperventilate.

I locked eyes with Libby, whose mouth was moving. I couldn’t hear her.

Cora is dead.

Jax is dead.

Laying my head on my arms, I silently convulsed.

One thought wandered around the edges of my brain, refusing to go away, in spite of the enormity of what had happened.

What the hell was Jax doing with Cora?

Chapter 2

July 2, 1997

I’ll never forget the day I fell in love with her.

There she stood, all tall and lanky, dark hair blowing in the breeze as if it loved caressing her face.

She held a beach ball and faced the sea.

She was sixteen.

That’s all it took. That one salty, sandy, sunshiny day—forever staked in my memory.

Her father had claimed a spot on Paines Creek Beach, right next to ours. They laid out a red-and-white striped blanket and matching umbrella with beach chairs, a cooler filled with watermelon and soda, and white paper bags that smelled of fries and burgers.

I’d settled on a beach towel next to my grandfather, Dex McGraw, surreptitiously watching them.

Gramps sat beside me, drinking from a cold thermos of gin and ice, his favorite. He sat with his shirt off and long legs stretched out, his head back and shaggy silver-blond hair glinting in the sun. He always told me his time was “before the hippies,” but I had a feeling he would have made a good one. He was one helluva rebel. And he always stood up for what was right, no matter what.

He saw me watching the girl and casually appraised her, gray eyes slit and his head nodding in approval. With a low whisper, he turned to me. “Pretty girl.”

I know I blushed, because at sixteen that’s all I seemed to do when girls were involved. “Yeah. I guess.” I traced circles in the sand with my forefinger. The sun burned the skin on my back and shoulders, although I’d slathered plenty of sunscreen on earlier at my mother’s insistence.

He didn’t say anything for a few minutes, but closed his eyes, soaking in the sun and soft breeze. I wondered what he was thinking about. Adventures at sea? Lost loves? I knew he had many, and that some of them had died awful deaths. Once in a while he talked about it. But it seemed I never got enough of his stories. I always wanted more.

“Finn?”

“Yes, Gramps?”

“I want to tell you something.” He opened his eyes, and caught me watching her again. She’d dropped into a chair while her father dutifully rubbed white suntan lotion on her shoulders.

“I’m listening.” I stared up at his leathery skin, his eyes so full of wisdom. He didn’t look like my friends’ grandfathers. Lean, muscled, and strong, he didn’t use a cane, or bend over when he walked. His body boasted scars earned from long-ago adventures. I bragged about those badges of courage to my friends.

He leaned in close to me. “Grab life with both hands. If you love someone, put your whole heart into it. Give it your all. Your everything.” He glanced sideways at the girl, and a wistful expression crossed his face. “Nothing is forever, my boy. So enjoy every single second.”

“Okay,” I said.

He locked eyes with me. “I’m serious.”

I nodded. “I got it.”

“Why don’t you go say hello? I think she’s looking for someone to toss that ball with.”

I nearly froze, but he gently urged me with his eyes. Summoning my courage, I stood up, brushing sand from my legs and arms.

“Go on. You’ll have fun,” he said.

I glanced at her.

Now her father rubbed lotion on her back. Creamy skin. Soft skin. Touchable skin.

She held her hair aloft with one delicate hand.

Piano playing fingers, I thought.

Be strong.

Be brave.

You can do this.

As if reading my mind, Gramps nodded in her direction again. “You’ve got this, Finn.”

“Right.” With heart thumping, I took a deep breath and headed toward her.

Chapter 3

July 5, 2013

On the day after Independence Day, I stood beside the grave, staring at the casket.

Cora.

Oh my God.

Cora.

The pain spread through me like hot oil in a frying pan, searing my insides and coating my brain with sticky, gooey nothingness. For the past two days, I’d been disconnected from the world and had rarely responded to people’s questions. I hadn’t met anyone’s eyes. And when they’d finally left me alone, I stayed in my dark bedroom for hours. No lawn mowing, no weeding in the Vanderhorns’ gardens, no stall mucking.

It was embarrassing, really, in that part of my brain that still connected tenuously with normal thought. But the double loss of Cora and Jax, coupled with my unresolved anger at him, was quite simply—unbearable.

My wife’s coffin lay in the rectangular hole covered with fake green grass carpet, sparkling white with lavender flowers. With a detached inner smile, I thought she would have liked it. That is, had she been standing here beside me and able to ignore the issue of her own death.

Maybe she was standing beside me? Maybe her spirit lingered in the salty sea breeze.

I wasn’t so sure. Because in the end, I didn’t even know if she still loved me.

Libby and Rudy Vanderhorn stood on either side of me, alongside a small group of our friends who crowded around the grave overlooking the cliffs, the very spot where my wife and brother had plunged to their deaths.

It was too much. Seeing those craggy bluffs, imagining—over and over again—the car bursting through the guardrail and plunging into the deep green water.

But I had no choice, really. The Shady Pines cemetery hosted the plots my parents bought long ago, and I didn’t exactly have enough pocket cash to buy two new gravesites. Okay, I’ll admit it. I didn’t have enough money to get the muffler fixed on my old Jeep. Or pay for that stack of overdue bills on the kitchen table. Worst of all, I didn’t have enough to cover the cost of flowers or funeral services.

Cora and I had sunk everything into paying off school loans. Me with my useless degree in fine arts, she with a performance degree in cello. Together we’d owed almost a hundred grand.

We both tried for years to get jobs in places like museums and orchestras. Occasionally, we’d get part time gigs. I sold some of my watercolors once when I lowered the price at the town sidewalk sales to ridiculous levels. But it was never enough to pay the bills, and over time, both Cora and I had given up our elusive dreams and fell into the jobs as groundskeeper/groom and housemaid at the Vanderhorns’ mansion by the sea.

The Seacrest wasn’t a bad place to work, and part of the deal was free use of a one-bedroom cottage on the far side of the barn. Where I used to sleep every night with Cora. Every night with Cora. Never again with Cora. Never.

Cora.

I surveyed the contiguous plots beneath the tree. Beside the graves of my parents and little sister, there was a space for me, a plot for my brother, and two adjacent spots for our wives. Jaxson’s wife had left him years ago, so I had no idea who would end up buried between him and me. My brother and Berra had produced no kids, thank God.

Cora and I had no little ones, either, although I’d always wanted a family. She’d said we “weren’t ready” every year, for the past eleven years. It always came down to finances, the fact that we had no home of our own, and her insistence that she wasn’t ready to be a mother.

Now she’d never get the chance. And I’d probably never be a father.

Another stab of pain hit me hard in the chest. I’d really wanted a family.

I clutched at the tie I borrowed from Rudy, loosening the choking fabric. The sun blazed overhead, and I’d broken into an uncomfortable sweat since we left the shelter of the cool limousine. I wore the same dark suit I’d bought for the triple funeral when my parents and sister died in the fire. It hung loose on me now, especially since I’d worked all day, every day for the past five years outdoors.

Today Rudy and Libby flanked me, also dressed in black. Rudy had kindly arranged for the funeral details for both Cora and my brother. Somehow, the flowers and service were ordered and paid for. Jax’s funeral was yesterday, a complete blur. I was certain it had displaced a number of July Fourth barbecues. I remembered very little, except some of the hymns we used to sing in church when we were a whole family. A complete family. A living family.

How can I be the only one left?

Reverend Mitchell droned on and on, but I didn’t process his words. He hadn’t known Cora. His words were hollow, and I almost resented the way he talked about her as if they’d been best friends.

I watched his mouth move, his hands holding a worn bible. His wizened mouth puckered and turned to a frown when a crow tried to compete with him and yammered in the white pine overhead, seeming to mimic the pastor’s words.

I almost laughed out loud.

I hadn’t stepped foot in the quaint little Presbyterian Church where he preached since the deaths of my parents and sister.

I was still mad at God for that one.

But I was also equally mad at Jax. I was certain it was his cigarette that started the fire.

“Finn?” Libby took my arm and guided me toward the car when the coffin was lowered. Someone’s hand—maybe my own—had dropped a handful of soil on it.

I held in my grief like a man.

My father would’ve been proud. My mother would have wept. And my little sister would have comforted me, holding my hand and telling me she loved me with those big green eyes.

But I felt it welling up in my throat, and if someone approached and was too nice, I was afraid I’d lose it.

“Finn? Come on. Let’s get you home.”

Libby had been kind for the past three days, sparing me her usual quips and complaints. Her father had treated me with respect and kindness, also out of character. Yet both of them had tactfully avoided the question I still agonized over.

Why had Cora been in Jax’s car?

I didn’t think they’d ever met. She’d asked about him, of course. Wondered why he inherited the farm and I got nothing.

She’d treated me like I lost my mind when I told her I’d rejected the inheritance and told him he could have it. All of it. The three hundred and fifty acres of blueberry fields and woods. The house and barns. The stand for the berry picking operation.

I’d given it all up to flee the horror of that night.

With a sigh, I slumped in the back seat of the limo. Libby touched my hand, and I felt my resolve crack.

Just five more minutes. Hold on for five more minutes.

Chapter 4

July 2nd, 1997

We played with the beach ball for about an hour, laughing and churning up sand three hundred yards up the beach, away from the sunbathers and family picnics. After the first few nervous minutes, the whole thing felt very natural, as if we were just kids and there were no boy-girl elements to be embarrassed about.

But there certainly were boy-girl elements.

I watched her tawny arms as they flailed and whapped the ball and marveled at her long, delicate legs when she ran back and forth along the quiet stretch of sand we’d chosen. Her eyes had a way of widening in mock horror when I tossed it too high and she missed it, quickly followed by a wide smile that dizzied me.

She had a nice figure, with slim legs, a narrow waist, and pretty shoulders. Her one-piece black suit covered areas I tried not to stare at, but couldn’t help wanting to. I wondered how it would feel to touch her. Probably softer than silk. Her hair cascaded along her back, bouncing dark against her summer brown skin.

We collapsed on the sand with the ball between us, breathing hard and laughing.

“You’re pretty good at this,” she said.

I leaned back on my arms and chuckled. “So are you. For a girl.”

She sat up and hit my arm. “What? For a girl?”

Afraid she’d storm off, I took her hand and pulled her close to me. “I’m just kidding! Really, you’re good, even for a guy.”

She smiled that lazy, sweet grin again and I felt my heart melt.

“Okay. That’s better.”

“What’s your name?” I asked.

“Guess.”

“What?”

“Guess.”

“Okay.” I sat up, furrowed my brow, and placed fingertips against my temples, staring at her. “I’m getting something. It’s coming.”

She laughed and poked my chest. “Oh, really? What do you see?”

I gave it a shot. “Jennifer?”

She snorted. “No!”

I tried again. “Sarah?”

She giggled. “Heck, no.”

I tried to think of the most popular names of our generation, hoping it was one of them. “Allison?”

“Uhnt-uh.” She shook her head.

“Give me a hint.”

“No.”

“Oh, come on!” I frowned. “How can I guess?”

“You have to.”

“Okay. Hannah? Jessica? Carly? Jenna? Lisa?”

“No, no, no, no, and no.”

“Hey. How ‘bout if I tell you my name?”

“What is it?”

I hesitated. “It’s a weird one.”

“Tell me.”

“Okay. It’s Finn.”

She tilted her head. “That’s not weird. I like it. Finn.” She seemed to taste the letters on her tongue, enjoying the feel of it. “It’s different. But nice.”

“Okay. Your turn.” I sat forward expectantly.

“Nope. I’m not telling. You have to keep guessing.”

I ran through all the names I could imagine, and didn’t hit on it. Frustrated now, I flopped back on the sand. “Okay. Then I’m gonna make up a name for you.”

She made a face. “Really?” Quickly, she leaned over me, her face blocking the sun.

In a sudden rush of feeling, I wanted to pull her to me, to smother her in kisses, to taste the salt on her skin.

“Okay, what’s it gonna be? What’s my new name?”

“Let me think.”

Her hair danced over my bare chest. I caught it and played with it. “You are sweet. I could call you Honey.”

“Boring,” she said.

“How about Candy?”

“Sexist,” she pouted.

“Bambi?”

“Even worse! I’m not a playboy bunny!”

“Okay, Well, you look delicious. How about Cupcake?”

She hissed. “That sounds like a chubby girl. Or a pony.”

“Okay, okay. Let me think. Maybe I need some inspiration. How about a kiss?”

At first I thought she’d reel back and hit me. But to my surprise, she lowered her lips to mine, stopping just an inch apart. “Okay. Just a little one, though.”

I reached my arms up to her neck and pulled her toward me. At the last minute, just as I felt the soft sweetness of her mouth brushing mine, she pulled back.

“Nope. Too soon.” She got up and laughed, twirling around with the ball. “Come on. What’s my nickname?”

I sat up, trying to control the heat surging beneath my bathing suit. “Okay. I’ve got it.”

“What? What is it?”

“Sassy.”

She pranced toward me. “I love that! Okay. From now on, I’m Sassy to you.”

Her father appeared out of nowhere, his face a study in disapproval. I think he hated me from the moment I’d asked her to toss the ball around. I also figured he’d probably seen us lying near each other, and got nervous.

He glared at me. “Time for lunch. Let’s go.”

There was no arguing with his stern tone. She tossed him the ball and wiggled her fingers at me. “See ya ‘round, Finn.”

I grinned like an idiot. God, she was cute. “Okay, Sassy. See ya.”

I watched her link arms with her father and sashay away from me. The sun winked on the brilliant sand, almost blinding me. As if hypnotized, I stared with slack jaw until I could barely make out her figure among the crowded, colorful throng of beach-lovers.

Sassy.

Oh, Sassy. You’re the one for me.

the_seacrest

Buy Now @ Amazon & Smashwords

Genre - Romantic Suspense

Rating – R

More details about the author

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#Free #Music #History Showtime at the Apollo by Ted Fox @Kindleexpert


Showtime at the Apollo is the definitive history of Harlem’s world-famous showplace. Home to nearly every great black star including: James Brown, Aretha Franklin, Richard Pryor, Gladys Knight, Michael Jackson, Ray Charles, Redd Foxx, Dizzy Gillespie, Count Basie, Sarah Vaughn and “Bojangles” Robinson, – the theater still hosts contemporary luminaries like The Roots, Mary J. Blige, Chris Rock, Wynton Marsalis and Whoopi Goldberg. Numerous performers relate their own poignant, exciting and sometimes hilarious stories. Some 150 photographs – many never before published – are interspersed throughout.

For African-Americans, the Apollo was the greatest black theater, and a special place to come of age. For whites – including Elvis Presley and the Beatles – the Apollo was as close as they could come to the reality of the black experience.

Still thriving, the Apollo has exerted an unprecedented influence upon popular culture. Since 1934, the Apollo has been at the forefront of African-American music, dance and comedy. It’s legendary Amateur Night spawned countless stars. Renowned for having the world’s toughest and most appreciative audience, it is the place where, as Dionne Warwick says in the book,

“Everyone gave their best performance".

"The essential book, mandatory for the most casual student as well as the most ardent fan." – David Hinckley, Daily News

"Ted Fox made the Apollo come alive for me again."– Jerry Wexler, co-founder of Atlantic Records

"Ted Fox mows through the 20th century's mind blowing cavalcade of segregation byproduct, inhumanity producing creative transcendence. The survivors of the era provide Fox with a front-line document." - Raoul Hernandez, Austin Chronicle

"A wonderful book." – Tavis Smiley, National Public Radio

"I could almost feel and taste the Apollo again." – Doc Pomus, classic songwriter

"The definitive history of Harlem’s (and black America’s) essential theater." – New York Magazine

"Showtime at the Apollo is not only a history of that wonderful theatre, but also a fascinating insider’s view of the Harlem music scene." – John Hammond, legendary producer and talent scout

TED FOX is also the author of In The Groove a collection of interviews with men who have shaped the music industry. He produces and manages Grammy-winner Buckwheat Zydeco and lives in upstate New York.

Showtime at the Apollo by Ted Fox
Rating – PG
Genre – Music History & Criticism
4.8 (7 reviews)
Free until 24 January 2014

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Practical Advice for New Authors by Denise Dowdell-Stent @valaoakley

Practical Advice for New Authors by Denise Dowdell-Stent

clip_image002[7]

The most fundamental piece of advice, and a realisation I have learnt through experience, is to trust your instincts!  If something doesn’t feel right, stay away from it! 

My first big mistake was approaching a number of UK literary agents, before my manuscript was completed and before I had done any groundwork and preparation into what I should present to them. This resulted in numerous rejections before I had barely begun. My second, most costly mistake, was employing the services of a company that claimed to critique the first three chapters of a manuscript and help to prepare a perfect package to present to literary agents. They took a large amount of money for their services for very little return. These experiences were both very disheartening and detrimental to my already meagre bank balance. But as with any adversity in life, one can lie down and give up or dust yourself off and carry on.

I would definitely advise spending money wisely on a reputable professional editorial and marketing service such as Standoutbooks; they will perfect your book and help it achieve the prominence it deserves.  This is not an area to scrimp on – there are far too many badly edited books out there (in fact, I wonder if some of them have been edited or proofread at all). This does not present a professional package; it is immensely irritating to read a book riddled with errors, many of which include bad grammar and avoidable typos. Content editing can be expensive so if professional services are out of the question, find someone knowledgeable and whom you can trust to do a meticulous, thorough job. In my case, my first three chapters were critiqued by a company providing editorial services; I took on board the comments I felt had some validity and dismissed those that did not. After this, my husband proofread my manuscript. However, it was not until I employed the services of Bronwyn and Alex Hemus at Standoutbooks (http://www.standoutbooks.co.uk/), and had my first three chapters content edited by Bronwyn, that I realized that the rest of my novel needed a much more comprehensive edit. Unfortunately, my finances did not permit me to have this done professionally so my father took on the job of content editing my manuscript. As before, I took on board all the suggestions made, which not only involved corrections, but also shortening certain scenes and adding some scenes and paragraphs. Following this, both myself and my father repeated this process twice – I then submitted my manuscript to Bronwyn for a professional proofread – I once again made corrections, my father and I read through it making further corrections, and then Bronwyn checked it again before it was finally ready. So, even if not using professional content editing, save the pennies for professional proofreading.

A solid marketing strategy is fundamental, so explore the possibilities and utilise what feels right for you.  Writing is a creative endeavour but to sell your book it also important to treat it like a business venture. I have a website www.eternaluk.com which features information on my book and myself, a photo gallery, trailers, a blog, a newsletter, sample chapter downloads, a media kit and links to retailers selling Eternal. I also use Twitter, Facebook, Google + and Pinterest. Guest blogs on literary sites and reviews for your novel also garner much more publicity and exposure for your book. Additionally, I have a listing on http://findagoodbooktoread.com/fiction-book-list.php, author interviews, guest blogs and hopefully a forthcoming professional book review. Especially important if selling on Amazon is to obtain a few positive reviews – this will help to improve your ranking and potential future sales.

Writing is my passion and provides an escape route from real life allowing me to indulge in my imagination and fantasies. When I am writing, I am living vicariously through my female protagonist, feeling her emotions and thoughts.  I believe this really helps create an authenticity and realism that would not otherwise be there. However, although I find writing provides solace, it can also be quite isolating at times; this is part of the reason I enjoyed making my trailer – it was a wonderful experience to work with others who shared my vision and we had a lovely camaraderie between us.

However, one more essential that should be implemented is a professional, beautifully presented website.  For me, the trailers were also imperative as they provide a visual representation of my book and allow readers to experience the world I have created in my novel.

Another author gave me a great piece of advice: your family and friends are your greatest asset.  Friends and family provide a great network of support and offer great scope for future sales as they are more vociferous in helping to promote your book through writing informative reviews and spreading the words to their friends, who in turn will hopefully tell other friends and so on.

One final word: establish a good support network. A life/work balance is important so spend time with family and friends and enlist their help.

About the Author

clip_image004[5]Denise Dowdell-Stent is a YA Fantasy Fiction author but also writes scripts, poetry (published in various anthologies such as 'A Passage in Time' and 'Speaking of Love' by Forward Poetry), song lyrics, and maintains a blog at http://www.eternaluk.com.

She has just released her debut novel, Eternal as an ebook on Amazon, iBookstore, Kobo and Google Books (retail links on website). She lives in Cambridgeshire, UK with her husband and young son. Eternal is a YA Arthurian themed Fantasy, chock full of adventure, romance, suspense and intrigue.

Website: http://www.eternaluk.com/

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/eternaltrilogy

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/valaoakley

Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DRIOmPViSbI

Amazon (USA): http://amzn.to/1ecaVA8

Amazon (UK): http://amzn.to/1fU46yX

eternal_denise

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Genre - YA Fantasy

Rating – PG 13

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Website http://www.eternaluk.com

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Kara Stefanowich – 10 Tips for becoming a writer @Karakazoo

10 Tips for becoming a writer

I would not be so presumptuous to say that I’m any smarter than the next writer, but if you’re just starting out as a writer, I may have some tips.

1.)    If you are interested in getting a Literary Agent and being published professionally, I hope you either have written the most brilliant book of the century, or have the patience of a Saint. There is a ton of competition out there and if you don’t do your research on the Agents you submit to and the Publisher you’re trying to land, then you may be wasting a lot of time and money. So do your research and be patient.

2.)    Make 100% sure you have done your Query Letter, Synopsis and Author Biography correctly because those are the first things that Agents, Publishers and Marketing companies look at before they ever bother to read your book. So if you mess those up, forget about getting anywhere with your book.

3.)    Have as many people you know, including English teachers/professors read your manuscript before throwing yourself to the wolves. Believe me, it helps.

4.)    If you plan on self publishing don’t bother to give yourself a deadline and do as much research on every aspect of self publishing as you can. It will take longer than you think.

5.)    Get yourself a Staples Reward Card. You have no idea how much money I’ve saved on paper this year. I managed to get 2 cases and 2 reams of paper for FREE, so far. Check for online coupons.

6.)    EDIT, EDIT, EDIT and EDIT again. Then maybe a few more times.

7.)    If at all possible, hire yourself a professional editor. You will be very thankful you did.

8.)    Always learn from your mistakes.

9.)    Be prepared for both good and bad feedback/reviews. We all get both. Even us OCD perfectionists.

10.)  LEARN TO FORMAT!!! See this last one? Number 10? Yep, bad formatting. Couldn’t get that first word ‘LEARN’ to back up to the 10. No idea why. Good luck!

hostage

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Genre - Paranormal Romance

Rating – R

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Website http://www.thrillsandchills.net/

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#AmReading Survival of the Fittest by Robin Hawdon @authordebate #Historical

SurvivaloftheFittest
The questions are always with us. Does God really exist? Are science and religion incompatible bedfellows? Charles Darwin shook philosophy to its foundations with his theory of evolution, yet strangely, he himself refrained from commenting in depth about the religious implications for fear of adding to the furor.
But suppose that he did in fact write down his conclusions as a secret addendum to his seminal work, Origin of Species. And suppose his beloved wife, Emma, who kept her own secret journal, was the only other person to know of this hidden postscript.
The novel Survival of the Fittest is the modern day story of the search for these two hugely significant works. An eccentric and endearing London antiquarian book dealer is hired by an equally eccentric American billionaire to track down the documents for his world famous collection of original manuscripts.
The complex investigation ranges across England, from historic towns and stately piles to prisons and Darwin homes, and involves a series of encounters ranging from the criminal to the romantic and the revelatory. Along the way, it explores the spiritual struggle within the extraordinary Darwin household, and the effects of that same struggle on the creators of the atom bomb and on modern terrorists.
Do we want to know the answer, or will it stir up a hornet's nest?
This dramatic investigation of man's spiritual dilemma occupies the spaces between authors Dan Brown and Richard Dawkins.
About the Author:
Robin Hawdon is one of Britain's most prolific playwrights. His plays have been seen in over forty countries. At any one moment there may be over a dozen productions running across the USA, Europe, and elsewhere. This is his third novel.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Detective, philosophy, religion, historical
Rating – G
More details about the author
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Brie McGill – Finding Your Voice @briemcgill

Finding Your Voice

by Brie McGill

I remember the first time I found my voice: I was thirteen years old, mastered a few power chords on the guitar, rehearsed an awful Courtney Love impersonation by my lonesome, and received my first amp. I knew I broke into that voice when the first neighbor threw a sneaker at my head. The moment was definitive.

Finding a voice in writing is much the same way: I know when I’ve found it, it’s an unmistakable feeling–not quite like having some dirt and a backwards imprint of Nike smashed into my face, but equally direct.

When I finished my first book, Kain, I felt like VOICE was the holy grail of authors: every agent’s website screamed at me, “Voice! Voice!” Writing workshops, writing websites, writing forums, all of them vehemently stress the importance of voice.

What is voice? It’s the voice of the main character, the character whose viewpoint filters the story.

As a new writer, this was a particularly challenging concept, because much of my education dealt with formal writing. Some grammatical rules are mandatory because the written word must make sense–otherwise, imagine a busy intersection with no traffic lights–but fiction is not so stilted.

Imagine a nineteen-year-old country bumpkin visiting an upscale lingerie store downtown. She might blush, delicately leafing through the coral silks, the ivory silks, in search of something with pearls and scalloped lace.

Now imagine an ex-convict with an unkempt beard rolling up on his motorcycle, ready to storm into a lingerie store downtown. He might spit before busting through the door, roll his eyes at a rack of frilly pink things, and look for something leather to…

Well, that’s the idea. The word choice of the narration must reflect the main character’s opinions, worldview, and experience. The color “coral” does not exist in our biker friend’s vocabulary–much like an entire dictionary of swears would never flow from the sweet lips of our nineteen-year-old country bumpkin.

Another delicate point to consider when crafting a character’s voice is the character’s relevant knowledge base. In the draft of my first opening scene, I made a gross error about the way an unconscious body is transported–thankfully, a military friend looked over the manuscript and spared me total humiliation. Despite the fact I had done an enormous amount of research for the book, this drove home the fact that voice-appropriate attention to detail is indispensible, and one can never research too much.

When I start writing a book, I have all the characters imagined in my mind; the process of writing continues to refine them and I learn more about my characters along the way. Often during the latter half of penning a rough draft, I reach a point where I know my characters well enough to poke fun at them. I can place them in ironic situations and play upon their weaknesses for comic relief. This, to me, is the golden indicator that I have indeed found my voice–and my findings are easily incorporated into the following reconstructive edit.

For authors struggle with finding the voice of a piece, focus on the character. Focus on what makes him human, what makes him quirky, and indulge the details–I promise, the voice will follow.

When you finally find your voice, maybe you will even break some glass–or at the very least, amass a nice runner collection.

Kain

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Genre –  Sci-Fi/Steamy Romance

Rating – R (18+)

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Website http://www.sexdrugsandcyberpunk.com/

 

Quality Reads UK Book Club Disclosure: Author interview / guest post has been submitted by the author and previously used on other sites.

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#Author Dora Machado Shares The Story Behind #Fantasy Novel "The Curse Giver" @DoraMachado

The Story Behind The Curse Giver
By Dora Machado
            The Curse Giver was an accident, a professional indiscretion, if you will, conceived during one of my little escapades, and born out of unchecked passion. Yep, I might as well come clean. Even the most disciplined writer can be unfaithful to her projects, and no matter how thoroughly taken one is with one's current novel, the danger for a tangent is always there when venturing into the world of research.
So there I was, researching one book, working hard to finalize the Stonewiser series, when I came across this insidious little idea that kept disrupting my train of thought.
Now, to understand the story behind The Curse Giver, you must understand my writing habits. I'm not easily distracted. When I'm writing a novel, my brain goes into hyper mode. I'm disciplined, motivated and focused to the point of obsession, which is why The Curse Giver was such a surprise to me.
The subject of curses has always fascinated me, not only because curses are such a vital part of magic and fantasy, but also because they are so prevalent to the human experience. To be honest, I had always been intrigued by the subject. Then I found them, one night, very late—or was it very early morning?—when the wind rattled my window as a coastal storm blew in from the sea.
The clay tablets that popped up on my screen dated from 600 BC and were part of the library of Nineveh, the oldest surviving library of cuneiform tablets. This is the same collection that gave us the famous Gilgamesh epic. Visually, the tablets weren't much to look at, chicken scratches on clay. But the translated words had an impact on me.
"May all these [gods] curse him with a curse that cannot be relieved, terrible and merciless, as long as he lives, may they let his name, his seed, be carried off from the land, may they put his flesh in a dog’s mouth.”
I know, hardly an inspiration for most. Me? I immediately thought of the man who had been thus cursed, of the pain and hardship such curse would bring upon him and his people, of the character that eventually became Bren, Lord of Laonia in The Curse Giver.
From there on, the curses flowed before my eyes, mysterious ones from ancient civilizations in Egypt, India and the Far East; thin lead tablets dating from the Greco-Roman world, judicial prayers, secret invocations, warnings and love spells that streamed into my consciousness. I knew I should get back to my original research, and yet I was smitten with the subject.
There were curses quoted from the Bible, medieval curses, real and forgeries, Viking, Celtic, Germanic, Visigoth, Mayan, Incan, Hopi, you name it. There were ancient curses but also modern curses, some associated with Santeria, voodoo and the 21 Divisions, religions that are common in the Dominican Republic where I grew up.
Who would cast these curses and why? What kind of creature could be capable of such powers? What would motivate a person to curse another one? As I explored these questions, a character profile began to emerge in my mind, someone whose understanding of good and evil was very different from my own.
Sorting through the research, I could see that some curses had practical applications to make sure people did what they were told. They served as alternate forms of law enforcement in lawless societies. Some were obviously malicious. They were meant to frighten and intimidate. Some were more like venting or wishful thinking. It turns out that mankind has been casting curses since the beginning of time and will probably continue for as long as we have the imagination and faith to do so.
A new question formed in my mind. Once cursed, what could a person do to defend himself? A third character emerged from this question, Lusielle, a common remedy mixer, a healer of hearts and bodies, someone who didn't realize the scope of her own power until it began to transform her life.
Eventually, I wrestled myself out of the trance. I had a book to write and a series to complete. I had deadlines. But my little detour had made an impact. The concepts were at work in my subconscious, coalescing into a new novel, fashioning these powerful characters who demanded their own story. My encounter with curses had been but a slight detour from my research plan, a tiny deviation, an indiscretion to my schedule, but the seed had been planted and The Curse Giver thrived, even if I didn't know it yet.
****
Dora Machado is the award-winning author of the epic fantasy Stonewiser series and her newest novel, The Curse Giver, available from Twilight Times Books. She grew up in the Dominican Republic, where she developed a fascination for writing and a taste for Merengue. After a lifetime of straddling such compelling but different worlds, fantasy is a natural fit to her stories. She lives in Florida with her husband and three very opinionated cats.
To learn more about Dora Machado and her novels, visit her website at www.doramachado.com or contact her at Dora@doramachado.com.
For a FREE excerpt of The Curse Giver, visit:  http://twilighttimesbooks.comthingsTheCurseGiver_ch1.html.
Contact Links
The Curse Giver's Buy Links:
Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/16EbUzM
Romance eBooks: http://bit.ly/14TXNbC
Curse Giver
Lusielle's bleak but orderly life as a remedy mixer is shattered when she is sentenced to die for a crime she didn't commit. She's on the pyre, about to be burned, when a stranger breaks through the crowd and rescues her from the flames. Brennus, Lord of Laonia is the last of his line. He is caught in the grip of a mysterious curse that has murdered his kin, doomed his people and embittered his life. To defeat the curse, he must hunt a birthmark and kill the woman who bears it in the foulest of ways. Lusielle bears such a mark. Stalked by intrigue and confounded by the forbidden passion flaring between them, predator and prey must come together to defeat not only the vile curse, but also the curse giver who has already conjured their demise.
Award-Winning Finalist in the fantasy category of The 2013 USA Best Book Awards, sponsored by USA Book News
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Fantasy/Dark Fantasy
Rating – PG-18
More details about the author
Connect with Dora Machado on Facebook & Twitter

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