#NewRelease – On the Run #NewAdult #Suspense #Romance

On-the-run-evernightpublishing2017-evernightbanner

Available Now!

Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance, New Adult, Suspense
Heat Level: 2 (Mainstream)
Release Date: July 4, 2017

With blood-stained hands and a guilty conscience, Raylyn Beechum sets off for parts unknown, on the run from a crime she had to commit in order to save herself. When her car breaks down in the parking lot of a fire station in a small town, her plan is simple: get the car fixed and hit the road as fast as possible. Then Mr. Tall-Dark-and-Yummy saunters over with his bare chest and uniform pants, water dripping off his pecs, and all Raylyn can think is hot damn!

Oliver Gonzalez has always had a hero complex, and a damsel in distress is right up his alley. All of his protective instincts come out when he sees the blood on Raylyn’s hands and the scared look in her eyes. He might not know her story, but he knows he wants to take care of her. Getting her to trust him is easier than he’d thought possible, but he wants more than trust for him to keep her safe. He wants her to trust him with her heart.

Excerpt

The hands gripping the steering wheel didn’t look like mine. The skin on the knuckles was bruised and broken. Dried blood was embedded in my cuticles. I’d washed my hands, but apparently not well enough. I’d burned the clothes I’d been wearing, along with the knife I’d used. Some might say that made me guilty, and maybe it did, but I’d learned long ago that the police were of no help. Not where I came from. No matter how many times the scene replayed in my mind, I couldn’t stifle the sobs welling in my throat. I’d taken a life, killed a man. No, not a man. A monster.

My heart crashed against my ribs, and my fingers curled tighter around the steering wheel. For years I’d suffered, but I’d had no idea just how far the madness went. If I’d had a clue as to what the man was capable of, I’d have acted sooner. Maybe so many lives wouldn’t have been lost, if I’d found my courage before now. The world should thank me, but I was certain if anyone knew what I’d done, the police would arrest me, and I’d spend the rest of my life in jail. Life wasn’t fair sometimes.

I blew out a breath and tried to redirect my thoughts. Puppies. Bunnies. Fields of flowers. Anything pleasant that could wash away the bad memories. I was starting over, creating a new life. Thanks to Miguel back home, I had everything I needed. I’d planned my escape weeks ago, but it just hadn’t happened quite the way I’d pictured. My new life was going to be fantastic and full of all the things I never had before. I was going to get a job, have a nice place to live, and I was going to get a boyfriend. Not necessarily in that order. I’d covered my tracks pretty well and felt I was safe, as long as I didn’t use my real name.

My car was almost out of gas as I entered a small North Carolina town a little after six in the morning. I’d been on the road for a few hours, and my best bet would be to keep driving until I couldn’t stay awake anymore. I crept through the quiet streets of a town that reminded me of Mayberry, and as I neared a fire station on the corner, my car began to shimmy and sputter. I’d barely pulled into the parking lot before my car coasted to a stop, the engine completely silent. I banged my hands on the steering wheel and uttered a slew of curses. The gas gage mocked me as the needle rested on E.

My gaze lifted and my jaw dropped a little. The fire truck was pulled part of the way out of the bay, and shirtless, sexy hunks were washing it. That was one sure way to make me forget my problems for a little while. One of them stopped to stare, removing his sunglasses and propping them on top of his head. His dusky skin glistened with sweat in the summer heat and I felt my cheeks flush.

Mr. Sexy made his way over to me and my heart raced for a new reason. It wasn’t like I hadn’t been around hot guys before. Just not this hot. He tapped on my window and I rolled it down. He bent and placed his folded arms on the windowsill. His blue gaze was warm as it scanned me. It was several minutes before he said anything.

“Want to pop your hood?” he asked.

“I ran out of gas. If you can tell me where the closest gas station is, I can go fill up a can and I’ll get out of your way.”

His lips twitched with amusement. “Sweetheart, this car isn’t going anywhere, even if you put gas in it. That wasn’t just an ‘I’m out of gas’ rattle. It was a death rattle.”

“Death rattle?”

His gaze focused on my hands and I wanted to hide them. I swallowed hard, wondering what kind of questions he would ask, or if he’d only call the police. My hands tightened on the wheel again and I wished I could throw the car into reverse and get the hell out of town. I didn’t need trouble, and this guy could turn my world upside down, and not in a good way.

“Why don’t you come inside and we’ll get those hands cleaned up a bit?”

“I don’t want any trouble.” I couldn’t hide the tremor in my voice. Had I made my escape only to be turned in by a good Samaritan now?

He stood and opened the car door, reaching in to gently take my hand. I slid out of the car and tipped my head back to look up at him. He towered over me, making me feel small and helpless, which I hated. I was anything but helpless. He studied my hands before leading me into the fire station. One of the guys looked our way and Mr. Sexy motioned for him to follow us. Inside, I shivered at the air conditioning as he led me down a long hall to a large, open room with sofas and a kitchen area.

“Have a seat,” he said, pulling out a barstool.

I eased onto the stool, my feet dangling above the floor.

“My name’s Oliver Gonzalez, and this,” he said, motioning to the other guy, “is Jared Waylon. I’m a fireman and he’s a paramedic. Will you let him check out your hands?”

I nodded hesitantly.

Jared grasped my hands and studied them a moment before looking into my eyes. I could see the questions there, but I wasn’t saying a damn word. After a moment, he began cleaning my hands, which stung like a bitch. He even scrubbed around my nails until my hands were blood-free. He doctored my knuckles and bandaged the worst of it.

“I’m not going to ask how you got these, but if you’re in trouble, I wish you’d tell one of us.”

I trembled.

Mr. Sexy—no, Oliver—placed his hand on my shoulder. “Easy. No one here is going to hurt you. We want to help.”

“We’re going to call a tow for your car,” Jared said. “One of the firemen here has family who own a garage. They’ll give you a good deal. Then we can discuss your options for a place to stay.”

“I don’t have much money.” I hated admitting my lack of funds. “Maybe they’d let me do some work for the repairs and a place to stay?”

Oliver squeezed my shoulder. “Let’s get your car taken care of first. Anything you need out of it?”

“My purse and the bag in the backseat.”

“I’ll get them,” Jared offered. “I’ll have Kaycee call the garage and get a tow truck sent.”

“Kaycee?” I asked.

“Our admin,” Oliver said. “She’s also married to one of the guys on my team.”

“Why are you helping me?”

Kindness shone in Oliver’s eyes as he gazed into mine. “Because I think you need a friend right now. Maybe, when you feel like you can trust me, you’ll tell me about the blood on your hands and what the hell happened to you. Until then, just tell me one thing. Do we need to hide you from the police?”

Buy Links

Evernight Publishing

Amazon

Bookstrand

Advertisements
Posted in Reading, Writing | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

#Museum #Dinosaurs

I took my family to the local natural history museum this week and we had a nice time. My kids especially liked the dinosaurs. I remember that being my favorite part when I was a kid too, and honestly, it’s still one of my favorite parts. We don’t have big plans for the summer, but I hope to have some more fun trips with the kids before school starts back in August. Maybe the lake and there’s a nature center nearby too.Here are a few pictures I took while we were out.

Here are a few pictures I took while we were at the museum.

0626171423

0626171429

This next one was my son’s favorites. A mosasaur. He’s been in love with them ever since he watched Jurassic World and saw that dinosaur leap out of the water. Even a million times later, he still gets excited when he sees that part. It’s probably one of my favorite parts of the movie too.

0626171432

So that’s the extent of my fun summer so far. Mostly I’ve been writing, reading, and watching movies. I may do another post some other day on the books I’ve enjoyed so far this summer.

Do you have any big plans this summer? Fun family vacation or a special outing? I’d love to hear about it. 🙂

Posted in Summer Fun | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

#CoverReveal – On the Run #NewAdult #Romance

Title: On the Run
Series: Flame Kissed #2
Author: Charity West
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Cover Artist: Jay Aheer
Release Date: July 4th 2017
Genre(s): Contemporary, Suspense, New Adult
Heat Level: 2

On-the-run-evernightpublishing2017

Posted in Reading, Writing | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Spotlight: Moonlight Keeper #NewAdult

MoonlightKeeperCover

Genre(s): New Adult, Paranormal, Mainstream
Published: May 3, 2017

Broken. Damaged. And nearly without hope.

Aria McFay has suffered at the hands of her uncle and his twisted pack, but she’s not giving up just yet. When she manages to escape, the first place she runs is to Ashton Grove, Georgia, and her childhood friend, Lucas Adams, in hopes the pack will take her in and protect her.

Heartbroken, yet determined.

Seeing Aria again only serves to remind Lucas that he’s known his destined mate since he was ten years old, except Aria never knew, because Lucas didn’t feel worthy of her. He’s worked hard to build a life for himself in Ashton Grove, but how can he claim her after everything she’s been through? Even he isn’t that selfish.

What the heart wants…

Aria may be damaged, but she still wants Lucas just as much as she did when they were kids. But the sexy wolf seems determined to keep their relationship as friends only. What will it take to make him see her as something more than his childhood friend? If Aria can’t have Lucas, she doesn’t want anyone.

Available Here:

Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iTunes / Kobo / Bookstrand

Excerpt

Aria’s body ached, her latest beating having left fresh welts and bruises. She felt like one, big, walking sore, but no matter what they dished out, no matter how severe her punishment, she refused to bend to her uncle’s wishes. It would be a long, cold day in Hell before she’d bow and scrape before the likes of Boudreaux LeBlanc, her uncle’s best friend. The man was insane, not to mention the meanest son of a bitch she’d ever met. He’d never had a kind word for anyone in his life, and now her luck had run out because he’d decided he wanted her for his mate. Even worse, her uncle was in complete agreement. Sadistic bastard.

Boudreaux wasn’t the first man her uncle had tried to pair her with. There had been three others over the past two years, and Aria knew what would happen when she refused to back down. The pain and horror of what happened those other times lived on in her mind. While it may not have scarred her physically, emotionally…well, let’s just say she wasn’t going to trust men very easily ever again.

She pushed the curtain aside and peered through the window. It had been quite a while since she’d been free to roam the pack grounds. Uncle Remus had deemed her unfit company until she’d give her word that she would mate with the loco Boudreaux. Because she had refused, she’d been locked in her room for a week now, and it was never going ot happen; she’d never give her word to mate with him. She was lucky her small closet had been turned into a tiny half-bath when she’d joined the pack shortly after her eighteenth birthday; otherwise, she wouldn’t even have had a toilet to use, or a sink so she could wash up. Her hair was filthy, the long strands greasy and repellent. She’d plaited it, doing the best she could with what little she was given.

Uncle Remus was afraid if he let her out of her room, she’d find a way out of the small cabin, and once that happened, he knew she’d hit the road. Well, swamp. It was a long way to the nearest town. What he didn’t realize was that the boards in the corner of her room were loose, enough so that she’d been able to dig a little each night. It wasn’t a big hole, but it was big enough for her animal to fit through. All she had to do was shift, dig the rest of the way out, and she would be free! Naked, but free. But hey, everything came with a price. At this point, anything was better than prostituting herself to an abusive asshole for the rest of her life. However long that might be. Boudreaux had already had one mate. She’d died less than a year after their mating ceremony. There were rumors that he’d killed her, not that anyone was going to step up and do something about it.

She winced as she moved, her muscles pulling and contracting painfully. Aria had heard murmurs in the hall earlier, when no one thought she was listening, or maybe they just didn’t care if she knew her fate. Her uncle was desperate and had determined the best way to control her would be to drug her. He’d ordered Ruth Ann, the pack cook, to dose her food with sedatives, like valerian root. She was certain there would be other things in there, things meant to keep her calm and docile. She had little doubt they would continue to dose her food until it took effect, and since she didn’t plan to eat it, that could be a while. Well, either that or she’d starve to death.

No, she needed to escape, and she needed to escape right now.

A glance out the window showed the sun was setting, which meant the guards outside the cabin would be changing shifts. If she was going to run away, it was now or never. Aria slipped out of her clothes, shifted into her animal, and dug her way out of the room. Once she popped out on the other side, nose twitching, she froze and scanned the area, looking for signs of trouble. It looked like no one was paying attention to her. Fast as she could, she made a dash for it, leaving the pack behind her.

Aria didn’t stop until she reached a small settlement not far from the highway. She shifted back, grabbed some clothes off a line in someone’s backyard, and made her way to the road. She’d have to be careful, if her pack had realized she was missing, they would be searching for her. Watching from the tree line, she waited until she saw a car with out-of-state plates on the front. Texans were friendly, right? Then again, they probably ate rabbit stew.

Stepping up to the edge of the highway, she held out her thumb, hoping they would stop and give her a lift. Hitchhiking was dangerous, but it had to be safer than staying with her family. Anything had to be safer than that.

The car slowed and pulled over. The man behind the wheel appeared to be in his sixties and gave her a kindly smile. Aria pulled open the door and slid into the passenger’s seat.

“Thank you for stopping,” she said.

“Young thing like you shouldn’t be hitchhiking.” He noticed the bruises on her arms and frowned. “Are you in some sort of trouble?”

“My family can’t find me,” she confided. “I need to get as far from here as possible, as fast as possible.”

He nodded and put the car in gear. “Buckle up. I’m on my way to Chattanooga. You just tell me when you want to be let out.”

“Is Ashton Grove, Georgia on the way? I think it’s in the mountains.”

He smiled at her. “Well, if it isn’t, I’ll get you as close as I can. You just sit back and rest. We’ll have you somewhere safe soon.”

“Thank you.” Aria let her eyes drift closed, finally able to relax for the first time in a while. Not much longer and she’d be safe with Amber, the shifter she’d been talking to in Ashton Grove.

When the call had gone out last year that the Ashton Grove pack was seeking new members, she’d contacted them, without her family’s knowledge. She knew at least two members of the pack and thought it would be a nice place to call home. Now, things were different. She didn’t delude herself into thinking she’d have a happily-ever-after there. It would be a resting spot. Maybe the alpha would be able to give her sanctuary while she figured out the next leg of her journey. That’s all she would ask of him. It wouldn’t be fair to bring danger to his door, not after everything the pack had been through. Her friend, Amber, had told her demons were on their way to Ashton Grove; of course, that was more than six months ago now. She hadn’t heard from Amber in a while, and she worried about her friend, but she was trying to keep her contact with Ashton Grove to a minimum so her family wouldn’t look for her there first.

Letting the hum of the car lull her, she fell into the first restful sleep she’d had in a week or more.

About the Author

Award-winning author Jessica Coulter Smith has been in love with the written word since she was a child. Her first stories may have been written in crayon, but now she’s a multi-published author of over seventy-five novellas and novels. Romance is an integral part of her world and spills over from her professional life into her personal one. When she went on that first date with her husband, she never expected to hear the words “marry me” pop out of his mouth–and judging by the shocked look on his face, he hadn’t meant to say them either. But, being the hopeless romantic that she is, Jessica said yes and they’ve been married since 2000.

You can follow Jessica at:

Her website: http://www.jessicacoultersmith.com
Her blog: https://jessicacoultersmith.wordpress.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jessicacoultersmithauthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/kitcatjms

Posted in Guest Authors | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Spotlight: For Her Sister

For-Her-Sister-evernighteen-2016-evernightbanner

Eighteen-year-old Bresha blames herself for her younger sister’s death. She knew that Arlene was gullible and fragile. Yet she still let her tone-deaf sister meet with Saul Sanderstorm, a record company mogul whose charisma is as big as his temper.

When Arlene is found floating in Camden Lock canal, the police call it suicide. But Bresha knows different. She knows that sleazy Saul is somehow to blame. And so does Arlene’s ghost. Why else would she fog up mirrors and trace the letter S for Saul through the condensation on the glass? Now, Bresha has to find a way to prove that Saul’s guilty.

She lops off her Nordic blond hair, goes undercover and gets a work experience job at Saul’s record label. It’s a dangerous, almost blundering spy game. The game is hampered when Bresha develops an office crush on a super hot techno DJ, who turns out to be Saul’s son.

When Bresha discovers that Saul is getting a kick out of mentally breaking singers, she wonders if this happened to Arlene. The truth has to be ugly and shocking. Because why else would Saul be prepared to do anything to conceal it?

Soon, Bresha faces a choice. Risk her life to unearth the facts. Or drop the case and be forever tormented by her sister’s ghost.

Excerpt

Someone was screaming. She realised that it was her. She found herself on her feet. She took off down the path, her breath jagged, her shoes pounding over the gravel. Fire flashed against her legs, as the nettles stung her.

She ran a few more steps. She had to be faster than him. Surely, she was faster. He was paunchy old man. Her feet hit a boulder and she stumbled. She felt his hands on her back. Slam. He pushed her down. A burning pain shot across her cheek, as her face smashed into the gravel.

She scrambled up and ran on. He sprang on her from behind. Again, he brought her down. She twisted around. He threw himself on top of her, his weight crushing her. She reached up and tried to claw his face but he caught her hands and pinned them down by her sides onto the path.

“You will not to do this to me,” he snarled. “You will not ruin me.”

Bresha tried to speak but her tongue was frozen. She gazed into his eyes, hoping to reason with him on an unspoken level, human to human. She’d read somewhere that eyes were supposed to be the view point into people’s souls. Now she saw his soul. It looked like the photograph of a cancerous organ on the side of a cigarette packet, black and festering.

He brought his head towards her lips. Was he going to kiss her like he might have been trying to do that day on the couch? She turned her head away, pushing one side of her face into the grit. He’d never kiss her. She’d die before he kissed her.

She felt him bite into her neck. He was giving her love bite, the sick pig. She screamed as he drew blood.

Buy Links

Evernight Teen

Amazon US

Smashwords

Amazon CA

Amazon UK

Playlist

Lost Boy – Ruth B

This tune is dreamy and other-worldly exactly like Arlene – the girl on the front cover and the sister in my novel. When Arlene is alive, she often feels lost or overwhelmed by what’s happening and retreats into her head.
Don’t Let Me Down – The Chainsmokers (feat. Daya)

Don’t let me down, I need you right now – go the lyrics of the song. This is how Bresha feels when Arlene starts communicating with her from the dead. Bresha doesn’t want to let her sister down. She wants to find out how she died . . . even though this seems impossible.

Turn Down For What – DJ Snake, Lil Jon

The energy of this track is off-the-chain! It feels hard and spiky. And it reminds me of the energy in London or in any big city, which seems to flow through everything like a boiling undercurrent. I imagine this playing as Bresha hurries through the high-rises to find Pixie, a rapper with the bubblegum pink hair. Bresha thinks that Pixie knows what happened to Arlene. Only Pixie is clearly too scared to tell her.

About the Author

Laraprofile

British born Lara Sleath has been writing stories – on paper and in her head – for as long as she can remember. But gave up on the idea of becoming a writer because she believed that the idea was too far-fetched. Instead she took the only slightly more sensible option of working in the music industry.

But even that proved too dull for Lara. In her mid-twenties, she set off from London with her boyfriend in a battered VW van. Their aim was to drive to India. They arrived a quarter of a year after adventures with warlords and after having seen many mind-blowing sights.

Today, the boyfriend in the beaten-up VW van is Lara’s husband. She lives with him and their two children in Vancouver, Canada close to the ocean and the mountains. Lara writes every day surrounded by an army of cats. For Her Sister is her debut novel.

Posted in Guest Authors, Reading | Tagged , | Leave a comment

The last movie I saw was…

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

I’ve loved each and every one of the Harry Potter movies, but I wasn’t sure what to expect from the latest installment in the wizarding world. I had thought, since Harry wasn’t in it, that I wouldn’t care for it as much. But truth be told, I loved it as much as Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone…a movie I still watch every month, sometimes twice a month. I can’t wait to see if there will be another movie in the series, maybe featuring Newt as he journeys across the world to return each and every creature he’s carrying around with him. Or maybe we’ll get to meet more wizards and witches, each with their own tale.

I loved all the different creatures that kept escaping and loved the mischief they would get into. I even liked the muggle that Newt dragged along with him on his adventure in America. I might have actually liked him the most.

All in all, it was a great movie and I’d give it five stars! It’s definitely one I will be rewatching again, probably sometime soon.

 

Posted in movies | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Spotlight: Or the Girl Dies

Or-the-Girl-Dies-evernightpublishing-JAN2017-large

Thank you, Charity, for having me on your blog!

My name is Rachel Rust and I’m an author of YA books, including my recent thriller, Or the Girl Dies (The Escape Series, Book One). In both reading and writing, I love all things mysterious, romantic, and thrilling. If it’s a whodunit, I’m all about it…especially if it ends with a kiss.

When not making up stories, I can usually be found with my husband, two daughters, and our hyper chug (chihuahua/pug).

I love connecting with readers and authors on social media, so please come say ‘hello’ to me!

https://rachrust.wordpress.com

https://facebook.com/AuthorRachelRust

 

 

 

Or the Girl Dies blurb:

 

~Editor’s Pick~

 

One school project. One kidnapping. One night they won’t forget.

Natalie is an honors student with perfect grades. Victor is a drug dealer with a cryptic past. And when a school assignment forces them to work together, things spiral out of control.

Victor fails to complete his part of their assignment, so Natalie hunts him down the night before it’s due. But Victor’s kingpin boss interrupts their study date and drags Natalie down into a seedy underworld where anything can be bought and sold—including her.

Over the course of one night—while dodging bad guys and trying not to inhale—Natalie discovers shocking truths about Victor. And she’ll need to choose between preserving her perfect academic future and helping him escape his troubled past.

Except one final revelation about Victor may be too much for Natalie to survive.

 

Or the Girl Dies excerpt:

 

I had heard a ton of rumors about Victor. People said he had been held back a grade, maybe even two. He had Mexican cartel ties. He was a Russian spy. He had been infused with gamma rays and turned green when angry. Everyone in school had their favorite myth.

But there was one rumor that stuck and stuck hard—Victor Greer was a dealer. And not the car kind. Sophia said he had a brother who was in prison for federal drug distribution charges. And Josh once told me that Victor had taken up his brother’s helm at doing whatever it was that drug dealers do. Sell drugs and stuff, I assumed.

Victor took a deep drag off his cigarette and looked past me, over my shoulder. Black lashes fringed his dark brown eyes. On the inside of his wrist was a black tattoo—22. Nothing else, just the number 22. Maybe it was the number of people he had killed. Or the number of cats he had at home.

Smoke exhaled from his nose and Marlboro replaced the scent of ponderosa in my lungs. He gave me one last glance before turning to the driver’s door of his black Trans Am. It was smaller than Josh’s car, but just as loud when started up. Victor shut the door and drove away.

“This is so not gonna be fun,” I muttered as the impending dread of having to work with that guy settled into my stomach like a rock.

 

Buy Links:

http://www.evernightteen.com/or-the-girl-dies-by-rachel-rust

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/or-the-girl-dies-rachel-rust/1125940804

(For a complete list of buy links go to my website: https://rachrust.wordpress.com)

 

Posted in Guest Authors, Reading | Tagged , | 1 Comment