Rachel Thompson

Fool for Love by Merry Farmer @MerryFarmer20

Chapter Four

The Majestic rose up out of the water in its Liverpool dock with all the glory of its name.  Amelia held one hand to her hat and stared at its iron sides, its two dun-colored funnels and three tall masts.  The ship was a strange thing to her, a mixture of old and new, progress with hints of the past.  It had sails that could be unfurled in a pinch, but with its powerful new engines, the ship could cross the ocean in a week.

Seven days to a new world.  It was an exact description of everything her life had become.  It was every bit as daunting.

“What am I doing?” Amelia whispered, staring at the hopeful monstrosity in front of her.  It was one thing to accept an offer for a new life.  It was another thing entirely to go through with it.

She turned away from the ship, swallowing the nausea that had plagued her since she’d left her mother’s house.  This time it wasn’t morning sickness.  That was long past.  At the moment, the baby was the least of her worries.  Her stomach rolled over the idea that she was about to board a ship heading for a new life at the mercy of a stranger, a man, no less.  The last time she had trusted her life and her future to a man had been a disaster.

She paced, purse clutched to her chest, scanning the busy dock in search of her American savior.  Men, women, and children crowded the gangplanks, eager to start their journeys, excited and hopeful.  Many of the third-class passengers carried bundles that indicated theirs was a one-way trip as much as hers was.  Eric had left her there to go buy her ticket, but there was nothing stopping him from running off and leaving her stranded.  Like her father.  Like Nick.  She was a fool to agree to this.  She pivoted and marched away from the ship.

No, she stopped herself after a handful of steps, this was the best decision she could have made.  She may have felt small and lonely standing by herself, waiting, heart and stomach fluttering, but she was as much a part of the intrepid adventurers seeking a new life in America as any of her fellow passengers.  This was right.


“Well, we got a minor problem on our hands.”

The twang of Eric’s accent shocked Amelia from her worries.  She spun to face him as he approached her with wide strides, scratching his head and looking as guilty as a schoolboy.

“A problem?” she asked, voice fluttering.

“Yeah.  I went to buy you a ticket, but they’re plumb sold out.”

Amelia’s chest tightened and her tender stomach lurched.  “Oh.  Oh dear.  Well I suppose….”

She lowered her eyes, heart aquiver.  As quickly as it started, her chance for a new life was over.  All that worrying for nothing.

She squared her shoulders to face her fate.  “I … I thank you for your efforts on my behalf regardless, Mr. Quinlan.”

Eric’s brow crinkled into a curious frown.  “Regardless?”

“I suppose I could find work here in Liverpool,” she explained.  “Surely there must be a shop somewhere that would look the other way from….”  She lowered her hand to the mound of her stomach.

Eric’s lips twitched.  The morning sunlight caught in his eyes.  “I didn’t want to have to put you in third-class, so I told them you were my wife.”

Amelia blinked.  “You what?”

“I told them we’re newlyweds.  I reserved my stateroom in first class last year when I came over.  Good thing I paid for it then too, ‘cuz after this fiasco of a trip I’ll never ride first-class again.  Anyhow, when they said they didn’t have any more rooms, I told them you were my wife and that we would be staying in the same stateroom.  They sold me a ticket for that.”  He handed her a fresh, clean ticket with her name written as ‘Mrs. Amelia Quinlan’.  “Sorry.”

Amelia held perfectly still on the outside, but on the inside her heart pounded and her stomach rolled with guilt for questioning him.  He wasn’t abandoning her.  He had gone out of his way to help her.  Her heart squeezed as it never had before.  She took the ticket from him with a trembling hand, hardly noticing when her fingers brushed his.  She was rescued after all.

“Thank you, Mr. Quinlan.  You have no idea how much this kindness means to me.”  She had to concentrate on breathing, standing straight, and looking up into his handsome eyes with a smile to keep her tears at bay.

“You don’t mind sharing then?” he asked her.


Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Western Historical Romance

Rating – R

More details about the author and the book

Connect with Merry Farmer on Facebook & Twitter

Website http://merryfarmer.net

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS
Read Comments

Ramz Artso on Where He Writes @RamzArtso #amwriting #amreading #YA

Image of Ramzan Artsikaev
Is your family supportive? Do your friends support you?
Yes, my family is supportive. Some of my friends are and some aren’t. Most of them don’t even know I write.
Do you plan to publish more books?
I most definitely plan to publish more books! And a lot of them, too! In fact, I hope to become the world’s most prolific author. The reason being, I have so many ideas I want to share with the world, it’s driving me insane.
What else do you do to make money, other than write? It’s rare today for writers to be full time…
I work sometimes. Get usual jobs.
What other jobs have you had in your life?
I’ve actually only had one real job so far.
If you could study any subject at university what would you pick?
I’d go to Durham University and join the Harry Potter course they’re offering. But on a more serious note, I’d go for literature.
If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
I’d love to live in China. Their cuisine is probably my most favorite and Hong Kong seems to be a lovely place.
Tell us about your family?
I love my family. Everyone is very kind and nice, and we always stick together, come hell or high water.
How do you write – laptop, pen and paper, in bed, at a desk?
I use my PC to write. In fact, I have three different ones. I do most of my writing at my desk, but the bed happens, too, every now and then.
Where do you get support from? Do you have any friends in the industry?
Sadly enough, I don’t. But I will say that the FreeBooksy team was extremely nice to me and really helped me out despite the fact that I’m a total nube.
Peter Simmons thinks he is an ordinary boy, before he is abducted by a man with certain special abilities, learns of his inescapable destiny, befriends immortals and becomes famous worldwide. Why? Because Peter Simmons is mankind's last hope for survival.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Young Adult, Action and Adventure, Coming of Age, Sci-fi
Rating – PG-13
More details about the author
Connect with  Ramz Artso on Facebook & Twitter

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS
Read Comments

Inside the Mind of #Author M.T. Dismuke @MTDismuke #scifi #horror

Inside the Mind of the Author 
“The only freedom you truly have is in your mind, so use it.” This is a quote I have been using for quite some time now. I have it on my biography and most of my websites. Others have used it for inspiration, as have I. By keeping my thoughts free, it allows me to envision stories long before I ever write them, but never do I force them upon myself. I keep an open channel to the world around me, allowing it to motivate my work. I’m constantly bombarded with ideas whether they come from a passing storm outside, a dinner conversation, or an article I’ve read online. The ideas can come from anywhere, anything, and at any time. Sometimes these ideas connect with a story I’ve been working on for years, and if the right connections are made, I add them to a long list of notes and build on the story. Sometimes these ideas open doorways I hadn’t discovered before and the entire story changes, taking me in an entirely new direction. I keep writing these notes down, one at a time, until the story takes on a life of its own. This is when the story begins to build upon itself.
Most of my work is technology based with darker themes and motives. I try to imagine what others would do if somehow, someway, they were able to tip the scales in their favor by abusing a certain power. This concept is the center of most of my work. I look around and see the things we have and use in our daily lives and then take it to the next level and beyond. My debut novel, The Necro Device, is based on a machine that raises the dead, but the story is not about the machine itself, it’s about the power it yields and how that power is abused. In Darkness & Daemons, Invasion I show how an advanced bioengineered, alien organism has the power to infect and destroy all forms of life, and in Cult of Tattoo, I use the gadgets and tools we use in today’s society to fast forward time, evolving them over several decades to create this bizarre, unimaginable world. It is these basic concepts that inspire me to write darker tales of destruction and abuse of power.
The principles and ideas behind my work alone are not enough. I realize it is people, the characters, who make the story important, so I inject a wide range of emotions, back stories, and personalities into the mix. Everybody inside my stories have their own stake in it. In my mind, it is everything combined that makes it a rich, dynamic and exciting experience.
Buy Now @ Amazon & Smashwords
Genre – SciFi Horror
Rating – PG-13
More details about the author and the book
Connect with  Michael Dismuke on Facebook & Twitter

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS
Read Comments

Superhuman Nature by Brandon Overall #excerpt #scifi #goodreads

Carl began to tell the story of his life after he discovered his powers.  He first started experiencing strange occurrences during the summer of 1982.  What he described was similar to what Neil had experienced in the first couple days that his ability manifested itself.  He talked about objects falling over as he was reaching for them, things being thrown about his room after waking up from a nightmare, and breaking things when he was angry.  He was 22 at the time, and still living with his parents.  They convinced him to see a psychiatrist.
Finally, during a therapy session, Carl got fed up with being told it was all in his head and sent all the books on the bookshelf flying across the room.  The psychiatrist was terrified, and refused to see him anymore afterwards.  One day, a few weeks after he stopped seeing his psychiatrist, men in suits came to his door and ‘persuaded’ Carl to come with them.  They said they were just going to ask him a few questions.
Carl spent the next two years as their prisoner.  They tried to test the limits of his power, and also tried to help him control it.  They would hook him up to machines and try to monitor his brain activity to locate the source of his power.  Their goal was ultimately to turn him into a weapon.  Carl’s abilities weren’t quite like Neil’s.  He never gained full control over it.  It happened on its own whenever he got emotional.
They tried repeatedly to ‘help’ Carl gain control over his abilities, but it was no use.  Finally, they decided to take a different approach.  They tortured him until he was filled with so much hatred that he was constantly in an elevated emotional state.
They had professional interrogators slice every sensitive part of his skin open with a knife.  They squeezed every pressure point on his body that caused him unimaginable agony.  They used every trick in the book to make him hurt in ways that wouldn’t leave any lasting injuries or broken bones.
This continued for months.  Whenever he was able to demonstrate his ability, they just increased the level of pain.  It worked, but not like they planned.
They pushed him too far one day.
Finally, he had enough.  His rage manifested into an unbelievable surge of energy.  Carl killed everyone in the testing facility, over two dozen people, and leveled the building in one violent outburst.
The facility was housed in the basement of an abandoned middle school.  Residents in a nearby neighborhood heard what sounded like an explosion, and the police came to investigate.  They found Carl surrounded in a heap of rubble, still screaming at the top of his lungs for the pain to stop.
Carl was brought to the hospital, but he slipped into a state of psychosis.  He was unresponsive for over a year.  He responded to basic stimuli like food and water, but didn’t speak a word the entire time.  He abruptly snapped back into reality one night.
The nurses at the psychiatric hospital heard him screaming during the dead of night, the same way he did when he was found after the incident.  It took a few minutes for him to calm down once he realized that he was no longer in the testing facility.
He was released a few weeks after he regained his sanity.  The medical staff determined that there was nothing wrong with him, mentally.  Carl said that his abilities had never manifested again ever since he woke up at the hospital.  Whatever it was in his mind that had spontaneously turned on in 1982 had turned itself off three years later.
From that point on, Carl had spent his life trying to find other people like him.  He created support groups for psychics, wrote articles in newspapers and magazines, and searched any records he could find for information, but he never found anyone in all of his years of searching.  Everyone he had ever spoken to was unable to demonstrate their ‘abilities’ in front of him.  Some tried to trick him by performing illusions, but Carl saw through those.
He created his blog in 2005 to try to expand his search.  It turned into a community full of attention seekers and scam artists, all too stubborn to admit that they were all lying to each other.  Carl said he received dozens of emails a day from people trying to find some way to turn their hoaxed abilities into fame or fortune.  When he read Neil’s email, it didn’t give off the impression of a liar.  Something about Neil’s letter convinced Carl that he was a man genuinely seeking to understand what was happening to him.  That was the only reason he agreed to meet him in person.
Neil stood silent for several minutes after Carl finished his story.  Everything he described sounded so real.  He was either an incredible liar, or he was telling the truth.  Neil could see in his eyes that he had no intentions of doing any kind of harm to Neil.  He was there to listen to his story, and do anything he could to help him if possible.
Superhuman Nature is Brandon Overall's first novel. It was written and published during his first deployment to Afghanistan as a 2nd Lieutenant in late 2013.
Neil Hitchens was a senior ROTC Cadet in college. He was just weeks away from graduating and becoming an Officer in the United States Army, until a strange dream set off a chain of events that would twist his life into something he could have never prepared for.
In the days following his dream, several strange happenings occurred that he began to suspect were the result of his own actions. Before long, he discovered that he had the ability to control the world around him with his mind.
What started out as an unpredictable ability quickly evolved into an extraordinary power that had the capacity to change the world. It didn't take long for the government to find out what Neil could do.
They knew having such limitless potential on the side of the US Military could give them limitless political influence, and they would stop at nothing to get Neil to do their bidding. They would find out what happens when you back a dangerous animal into a corner.
Neil spent his whole life believing he would amount to greatness, but he never expected how greatness could corrupt even the most innocent of minds.
Buy @ Amazon & Smashwords
Genre – Science Fiction
Rating – PG-13
More details about the author
Connect with Brandon Overall on Facebook

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS
Read Comments

Justice Incarnate by Regan Black

* * *

Chief Brian Thomas sat in his office with his right foot propped on his desk and an ice pack on his swollen knee. He'd ditched the contacts and scruffy jacket. Phone card clipped to his pocket, he toyed with his 'prize' while his mentor's affable voice filled his ear.

"Tell me again why I shouldn't have my men out looking for this thief?" Thomas asked.

"Because you're doing me a favor," Albertson said. "The item she stole is of no consequence. What'd she look like?"

"The ghost of Christmas future."

"Beg pardon?"

Thomas moved, then gritted his teeth when his knee complained. "All black. Head to toe. With a cape." He didn't even know her hair color and her eyes had been shadowed as well. Of course she could've disguised her features as he had.

"Ah, yes. The proverbial Bat Girl."

Thomas laughed. "Maybe. The evidence crew lost a man during the response. My men will want to see justice done."

"I'm sorry to hear that. But she won't get away with it."

Thomas caught himself caressing the necklace he'd hastily removed from the display. It took more effort than it should have to lay it down. When he did, his hands felt empty, his chest hollow.



"Yeah, sorry. I'm tired."

"I understand. These are odd hours you're keeping on my behalf. If the media should find this story, let them know you think the crime is of a personal bent."

"So you've got yourself a stalker." Thomas gave a low wolf whistle. "Sure you don't want a team on you?"

"Absolutely not."

Thomas blinked, startled by the vehement reply. "Too bad. She looked professional."

"But what sort of profession?"

Thomas fought back an instinctive defense of the thief, but Albertson's hearty belly laugh sounded first. When he caught his breath the judge said, "She can't touch me."

"If you say so," Thomas replied. His hands were back on the cool gold surrounding the fiery opal of the antique necklace. The filigreed heart-shaped setting would've drawn much attention to the cleavage of the young lady wearing it. "Anything else?"

"No. You've done well and I thank you."

The judge disconnected before Thomas could ask anything else. It seemed he'd have to wait for more answers about the threat this burglar posed. Not unusual, but still irritating.

His desktop monitor lit up with an incoming call. Then another. The primary questions of both callers filled the text fields while pictures of impatient reporters popped up above the words.

The media had found the story all right. With a reluctant touch, he slid the necklace into the lockbox in his desk, and then prepared to enter the gauntlet of question and answer.

The burly man storming into his office stopped him.

"Chuck, have a seat."

"I'll stand." He tossed his silver shield at Thomas. "I won't spend another minute in the hell-hole you've got here."

Deliberate, precise motions moved the ice pack and brought Thomas to his feet. "You'll control yourself and follow orders."

"I won't take orders from a man who'd sacrifice his own."

"You've crossed a line here, Loomis."

"That's the pot callin' the kettle black, I'd say."

Thomas shook his head and then recalled the antiquated saying. "What's set you off?"

Chuck tapped a thick index finger on the desk. "Tonight's little exercise crossed the line, Chief." He sneered at the title. "Wait'll the boys hear Larry died in the name of a lousy test run. Neither you or the city'll survive the Blue Flu."

"Test run? Flu?" Baffled, Thomas dropped back into his chair. "Start over. And use English this time."

"I saw the Michaels woman." Chuck bit out each word. "She's tested response times and codes and the like before."

And suddenly it clicked. The mystery thief was 'the Michaels woman'. Jaden Michaels, a security specialist with a tendency to favor the underdog. She had some sort of girl-power school in town and did some freelance with the police force occasionally, but they'd never met in person.

"Chuck," he applied his calm buddy tone. "We weren't running tests tonight. If you got a call–it was real."

He glared at Thomas. "So real the museum says nothin's gone."

Thomas sat up straight, ignoring the jab of pain climbing his leg when his foot hit the floor. "Nothing?"

"Nope. They just spewed nonsense about false alarms and sent me on my merry way." He swiped that beefy hand over his face and cleared his throat. Twice. "After they took away...the body...I looked around for the laser gun. It wasn't on her, but I'll be damned if I know where she ditched it. Larry'd been trying to link a call we were tracing with the museum break in. When the laser flashed I dodged but it caught the tire. Now how'd she get a hold of that except from someone skimmin' from us?"

Thomas understood every layer of Chuck's agony. "I'll look into it. Personally." Won't have to look far. "I've already seen the video. Larry bounced out of the seat. He just wasn't buttoned down when the vehicle rolled. An unfortunate accident, that's all."

"Bull." Chuck upended an evidence bag and a charred buckle and webbing clattered onto the desk. The bitter smell of burnt flesh and fried circuits hung in the air between them.

Thomas pressed his fingers to his temples in an attempt to stop the relentless pounding. He didn't need to deal with equipment failure, even if it would soothe his conscience.

"Go home. Get some rest. And keep the badge." Chuck nodded, and then just stared down at him like a lost puppy. "Take tomorrow off, Chuck. I'll handle Michaels."

"Yessir." At the door, Chuck paused. "Check the tapes. Larry's last entries should lead you right to her."

"Got it," Thomas said and dismissed the grieving officer.

What the hell was going on?

He had a judge who didn't care about a display he'd personally funded, a museum denying all trouble, a good cop dead, a security specialist posing as a thief, a chat room buzzing with reporters, a bum knee and the devil's own headache.

"Lord love a duck," he groaned and washed a couple of painkillers down with a hefty gulp of antacid.

* * *

Justice Incarnate

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy

Rating – PG-13

More details about the author and the book

Connect with  Regan Black on Facebook & Twitter

Website http://www.reganblack.com

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS
Read Comments

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Promised Land: A Galatia Novel by C. D. Verhoff #fantasy

1)    The tale of Josie Albright and Lars Steelsun was originally a few lines of back story in a manuscript called, Guardians Arise. Over time, I became so enamored with their tale of love and woe, I put the completion of Guardians Arise aside to flesh it out into its own novel, the one promoted here today.
2)    Before I was born, my father was seriously injured in an industrial accident. Bedridden, unable to work, my mother took care of him while looking after three young daughters. Great Aunt Josie didn’t have a lot of money herself, but my family had food on the table and managed to pay the bills because of her generosity. Thankfully, my father slowly recovered and was able to return to work. Despite his protests, Aunt Josie continued to buy bags of groceries for the family until she died at the ripe old age of eighty-four. The main character in my novel, Josephine Albright, was named in honor of her.
3)    The seed of the series was planted more than twenty years ago when I was a senior in high school. I had a part-time job as a receptionist in a law office. On a slow Thursday afternoon, I began my first novel. Some of the ideas and characters born that day made the jump to Promised Land.
4)    Way back when, I followed my sister around for three days to tell her the plotline for the series. She tried to ditch me, but she couldn’t get rid of me.
5)    Promised Land was originally twice as long. I moved portions of it to the second book in the series, Seeker of the Four Winds.
6)    Most fantasy novels are relatively clean, so having sexual situations in Promised Land and its sequel has given me a lot of angst. After a debate with myself, I thought they were important to show the controlling nature of one of the characters, so I kept them in.
7)    I chose Ohio for the location of the bunker for a simple reason--I live in Ohio.
8)    Midwestern and pop culture associations are part of the series. I use them like props on a stage to create juxtaposition between the old world and the new.
9)    Most of my family and friends are supportive of all of my writing ambitions, but only a handful of them have expressed interest in reading my books. This was disappointing, but it served as a valuable lesson. Don’t assume too much. Don’t expect too much. People have different tastes, busy schedules and some of them simply don’t like to read.
10) One of my nieces has Erbs Palsy. That’s why I gave the physical condition to one of my characters, Lars Steelsun. My niece has as mild case—hence, so does Lars. Erbs Palsy is nerve damage, frequently caused by a botched delivery during the birthing process. The damage results in permanent weakness in the muscles, reduced range of motion, and physical deformities.
The last survivors of the human race are riding out nuclear winter in an underground bunker when disaster strikes. Forced to the surface centuries ahead of schedule, what they find blows their minds. Who can explain it? Two social misfits work together to unravel the mystery.
After living in a posh underground shelter his entire life, Lars Steelsun is plunged headfirst into a mind-blowing adventure on the surface of the Earth. As Lars and his displaced bunker mates are led across the grasslands by Mayor Wakeland, a man of questionable sanity who claims to talk with God, they discover a primitive world where human beings are no longer welcome. Even more mystifying is the emergence of new senses and abilities from within. Learning to use them has become a priority, but his biggest challenge comes from the vivacious Josie Albright. Her lust for glory is going to get them both into trouble. Sparks fly when her gung ho ways clash with his cautious personality. Can they overcome their differences to find love and a homeland for their people?
May not be suitable for younger readers. 
Contains mild profanity, sexual situations (infrequent), and violence.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre - Epic Fantasy
Rating – R
More details about the author
Connect with C. D. Verhoff on Facebook & Twitter

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS
Read Comments

Negotiation Tactics by Lori Ryan @loriryanauthor

Chapter One
Chad woke to searing pain in his chest as he gulped air, trying to fill his lungs. He squeezed his eyes shut and battled to clear the fog from his head and slow his heart rate.  His body stilled as he listened to the sounds around him: the sound of traffic on the street below his window and the hum of his air conditioner kicking off as it reached the designated temperature. Chad shook his head and forced his eyes open. He was in his bedroom in New Haven, Connecticut, in his bed with the navy blue sheets and mahogany headboard. Above him was the familiar crack on the ceiling that he always meant to fix but never remembered unless he was in bed staring up at it. His flat-screen television, mounted on the wall, ran static. His laptop lay on the bed next to him where he’d abandoned it for sleep the night before.
Despite the familiar surroundings, it took Chad a minute to realize there was no medic kneeling beside him, pushing a too-long needle into his lung. There was no metallic scent of blood or charred flesh choking him and making him nauseated. No ringing in his ears. The other three men in his detail did not lay still and silent next to him, their eyes lifeless and unseeing, their bodies forever broken and destroyed.
The dream didn’t come often anymore, but it always took him a few minutes to recover when it did. As Chad took deep, calming breaths he realized the phone was ringing. He slapped at the nightstand with one hand until he found the phone then slid his thumb across the screen to answer the call.
“Yeah?” His voice was thick with sleep.
Chad Thompson bolted upright in his bed, the remnants of the dream no longer clutching at him. His gut twisted when Jennie’s voice came through the phone with the ring of false confidence. Something wasn’t right.
“You okay, Jennie?”
Jennie Evans didn’t normally call him outside of working hours at Sutton Capital. They had a weird relationship. Chad was Jennie’s supervisor. She was flippant, irreverent, and completely brash in all her dealings with him. And, he loved it.
Outside of work, things were equally unorthodox between them. They spent a lot of time together because Jennie was best friends with Kelly, the woman who married Chad’s cousin last year. Jack and Chad were more like brothers than cousins. So Chad saw Jennie anytime he hung out with Jack and Kelly, which was just about every weekend.
But, Chad and Jennie weren’t the type of friends that called each other or sought one another out outside of the group. It was more that they ended up at the same functions because of their mutual friends.
So when she called on his cell phone first thing in the morning, on a weekend, he noticed. It was also the use of his name that got his attention. Quickly. Jennie didn’t use a nickname like ‘Boss Man,’ ‘Big Man,’ or ‘the Hulk’ like she usually did. No, this morning she called him Chad, rather than any number of other nicknames designed to taunt him about his large stature.
“Um. I’m a little...stuck,” Jennie said on the other end of the phone. He could hear her hesitancy through the line.
“Define ‘stuck,’ Jennie.” As he talked, he threw back the covers and swung his legs over the edge of the bed.
“I, um. I’m out at Edgerton Park and I don’t have any shoes to jog home. Can you come get me? Jack and Kelly are touring the Labor and Delivery Unit at the hospital this morning so I can’t call them and I can’t get hold of Jill,” Jennie said.
Jill was married to Chad’s friend Andrew who also worked at Sutton Capital with Jack and Chad.
“So that leaves me. How did you get out to Edgerton Park without shoes or a car?” Chad asked as he shoved his feet into sneakers.
As he spoke, the implications of what he’d just said sank into his brain. Jennie was alone in a park without shoes or a way to get home. Fear for Jennie rippled up his spine, but he tamped it down and focused.  Chad moved a lot faster, as his mind began to play through scenarios. Was she with a guy and he ditched her? Was she out drunk last night and never made it home? Maybe she found herself in the park, with no shoes and no idea how she got there? Just the thought of Jennie out with a guy started a slow burn in his gut. Chad couldn’t date Jennie himself, but that didn’t mean he’d handle it well at all if he saw her with another man. And, what if that man treated her wrong or hurt her in any way?
I’ll kill whatever asshole did this to her.
“Can I tell you when you get here? I’ve been here for a while now. I’m getting a little hungry. And my feet hurt. I had to run in bare feet. I could really use a ride.”
Run? She’d been running…
Chad’s fists turned into hard knots of anger as he thought about someone leaving Jennie where she could have been hurt or... Another thought sent cold spiraling through him.
God, what if they didn’t just ditch her at the park? What if...? His heart pounded in his chest and he broke out in a sweat.
“Jennie, did someone hurt you?” Now Chad used the eerily calm tone of voice from his days in the military. It came out when he was pissed as hell and ready to tear someone to pieces, but also when he needed to keep himself calm and collected enough to deal with the situation.
“I’m okay, Chad. No one hurt me,” Jennie answered, sending a wave of relief over Chad that left him weak, much weaker than he’d acknowledge. Chad grabbed his wallet and keys.
“On my way.”
“Thanks, Chad. I’m over by the greenhouses. I’ll wait by that entrance,” Jennie said.
The park was well known for the large row of greenhouses that housed an impressive array of native plants. The local gardening club hosted a native plant sale twice a year. There was an entrance cut into the stone wall that surrounded the park, near those greenhouses. Chad knew it well. It was the entrance he used whenever he jogged through the park.
“Got it,” Chad said as he ended the call and grabbed a T-shirt. He pulled the shirt on as he rode the elevator to the garage and jogged to his truck.
What the hell, Jennie?
Chad didn’t know what story she’d have when he got there, but it was sure to be good. This sounded like a bit much, even for Jennie.

Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre –  Romantic Suspense
Rating – R
More details about the author & the book
Connect with Lori Ryan on Facebook & Twitter


Lori Ryan is a NY Times and USA Today bestselling author who writes contemporary romance with a twist of suspense. She lives with an extremely understanding husband, two wonderful children, two mostly-behaved dogs, and a lone little cat in Austin, Texas. It’s a bit of a zoo, but she wouldn’t change a thing.

Lori published her first novel in April of 2013 and has written three more books since then. Each of Lori’s books have made their way to the Amazon bestseller list and she quickly climbed the Amazon bestselling author list, as well. In November, 2013, Lori and a group of romantic suspense authors landed on the USA Today and NY Times bestseller lists with an anthology only eight months after the release of Lori’s first book. Lori loves to connect with her readers. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter or subscribe to her blog. Oh, and if you’ve read Lori’s books and loved them, please consider leaving a review on Amazon.com. Writers live and die by their reviews and Lori promises to do a happy dance around her office every time you write one!

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS
Read Comments

New #Romance Release & #Giveaway - Ever Hopeful by Lori Ryan @Loriryanauthor

Combining heart-soaring contemporary romance with heart-pounding suspense is a trademark of New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Lori Ryan—and in her novel Ever Hopeful she delivers spectacularly on both counts.  Two-months pregnant and trapped in a violent marriage, Laura Kensington realizes that her ruthless and powerful in-laws will never let her go, even after the strange sudden death of her abusive husband.  

Fleeing far away to the Texas ranch of Cade Bishop, a strong yet tender man who believes in second chances, Laura finds herself irresistibly drawn to Cade’s gentle passion and giving heart. But there is no escaping the shadows of her past and soon danger re-enters her world, pulling Laura into a deadly web of lies, betrayals, and murder.  And only Cade Bishop’s quiet strength and unwavering love can set her free.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre - Romance
Rating –  R
More details about the author
 Connect with Lori Ryan on Facebook & Twitter
Giveaway 1
Contest for readers, authors, bloggers (open to all)
Lori says - am giving away one Kindle Paperwhite (or gift card of equivalent amount if outside the US or UK) to one entrant in the two week long contest.
The In the Biz Contest
Lori says - am giving away one Kindle Paperwhite to one blogger or author who helps promote her book during the first two weeks through blogging, Facebook, Twitter or your newsletter (whether through a tour or on your own): To enter this contest, please email her at loriryanauthor @ gmail.com and she will send you a link to let you enter. You’ll be able to enter multiple times!

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS
Read Comments

#Author Bryan Taylor Shares an #Excerpt from "The Three Sisters" (#Satire #AmReading)

I remembered how much I hated Catholic School, but how much I had enjoyed entertaining my classmates when the sisters were gone from the room. I had endured Catholic School, and I knew what it could and should be like, so I convinced myself that if I could put up with the convent for a year or so, I could spend the rest of my life, or at least a few years, reforming Catholic School from within its very bowels. I knew every trick in the book the terrorists in training, as the sisters referred to us in junior high, could think of, and if my students even thought about misbehaving, I could stop them before they converted their plans into reality.
Of course, my first choice for a Catholic career would have been to become an exorcist. I had seen The Exorcist when it first came out in 1973, and let me tell you, if I had been in that house with Linda Blair, she would have known that she had met her match. If she had thrown up on me, I would have slapped that little bitch so hard, her head would have spun around like a top until it levitated off her torso. I knew I had more balls than either Jason Miller or Max Von Sydow, and after I was done with her, she would have been begging for mercy. Fortunately for the possessed of the world, the Catholic Church doesn’t allow nuns to become exorcists, and a movie version of Coito the Exorcist was never made. This was just another example of how equal opportunity would have helped the Catholic Church to fight evil in the world.
I told a priest I had gotten “the calling” to become a nun, and he sent me to some nuns. I met with the sisters, and being the inquisitive type that I am, I asked them what was expected of a postulant. The sisters told me they expected a nun to have the seven cardinal virtues: chastity, temperance, charity, diligence, patience, kindness and humility. A nun should be between sixteen and forty with a spirit of heroic generosity and common sense; be in reasonable health; have stability and a desire to give oneself utterly and unconditionally to God; be able to get along with others; be distinguished by Christ-like charity; have a limpid simplicity of the soul, selflessness, unquestioning loyalty, prudent zeal, an orderly mind, gracious courtesy, an adaptable disposition, solid piety, and the saving grace of a good sense of humor. It was Academy Award time. Feigning repentance from my wicked past and throwing in a few lies, I told them that was me all over, and a month later I was accepted into their order.
To be honest, I was of two minds about going into the convent. The optimistic side of me, the part that was full of youthful determination and ambition said I could succeed. After all, Vatican II had been introduced ten years before, and we were living in the modern age, the 1970s, when the Church might actually replace a medieval church with a modern church. Then there was the pessimistic side of me which was convinced of the futility of my Icarian ambitions. If I went into the convent, I would be fighting two thousand years of established hierarchy, and this was certain to be a lost cause.
I felt like I was in one of those cartoons where the angel and devil whispered in the character’s ears trying to convince their alter ego of their point of view. I wavered back and forth until the week before I entered, and finally decided to go through with it. Even if it didn’t work out, I figured, I could always leave. I was still young, and if my worst fears were realized, I could always leave and change the world in some other way. Everything else in the world was changing, so why couldn’t the Catholic Church?
Nuns just want to have fun! But when three former Catholic nuns have too much fun and get in trouble with the law, they become nuns on the run.
Driving back to Washington D.C. where they work at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Parts, the three sisters are arrested in Tennessee. After defeating the local deputy in strip poker, they escape from jail, and are pursued by the zealous Detective Schmuck Hole, who has personally offered a $10,000 reward for their capture on The 700 Club. Little do they know that when the three sisters visit the Washington Monument, their lives will change forever.
Set in 1979, The Three Sisters is a sacrilegious satire that skewers not only organized religion, but the government, the media, intellectuals, corporate greed and every other part of the establishment. Maybe not the greatest story ever told, but possibly the funniest.
Buy @ Amazon
Genre – Humor, Satire, Catholicism, Politics
Rating – R
More details about the author
Connect with Bryan Taylor on Facebook

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS
Read Comments