Archive for July 15, 2015

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The Malevolent Twin

Book One

Mary Sage Nguyen

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Genre: Young Adult, Suspense, Thriller,

Mystery, and a little bit of science fiction.

Date of Publication: April 2015

Ebook: 123 pages / Word Count: 37,560

Cover Artist: www.ebooklaunch.com

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My Review

The beginning of this book is chilling. I had to go back and check that it wasn’t listed as a horror story. Then I read on and discovered it was Avery having a nightmare.

Avery has had an imaginary friend, Venice, since she was a young girl. Now she’s a young woman, working with her mother in a nail salon, being a good girl and dreaming of something better. Venice still keeps coming around.

As their wills class, as Avery wishes Venice would just go away, Venice turns evil.

Just who is Venice? What does she want? What will she make Avery do next?

Avery must find answers and seeks the help of an old exorcist and a psychic. She fears her time is running out.

I was having such a good time, I read this from start to finish in less than a couple of hours.

It starts with a very creepy scene, then introduces you to Avery and Venice.

Avery is a dutiful daughter and never gets in trouble. Then Venice starts messing with her. She’s forced to do things she’d never consider doing. I felt for her. How do you fight something you don’t understand?

As for Venice, she’s bad to the bone. Such a wicked, malignant villain.

I’ve seen movies and read books with a similar plot and possession and evil entities always give me goose bumps. I know a book is good when I startle at strange noises and see things move out of the corner of my eye.

The Malevolent Twin creeped me out. And I loved that. It’s not easy to spook me anymore. I’ve seen too many scary movies and read too many scary books.

I didn’t know this was going to be a series when I started it. But after I read the end, I knew there had to be. It’s not a cliff hanger, more of a hint of things to come. Evil things. Bad things. I can’t wait.

4 Stars

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Synopsis

A murderous wicked twin.

An innocent, law abiding, and oblivious girl.

The ultimate brawl between contrasting sisters!

Murder, mystery, suspense and more

In The Malevolent Twin

Avery is a normal teenager, except for Venice. Venice is Avery’s imaginary friend or so she thinks. When the two begin to fight. Avery starts her investigation, to figure out what Venice really is. She encounters a wise old exorcist, and an albino psychic who assist her, with attempting to remove Venice. Which comes too late as Venice goes on a murdering rampage using Avery’s body. Does Avery survive the Wrath of Venice?

Find out in… The Malevolent Twin

 

Available at BN   Amazon

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Check out the excerpt from Chapter Four!

Venice Revealed

            Avery closed her laptop. It was getting hot from being overworked. She laid back and immersed herself in the soft covers. She dreamed again that night.

She was six years old. Her father had left fresh bruises all over her body. Avery was in her room crying. Her siblings had been lucky not to be sick that day. Avery wiped the tears off her face with her blanket. She knew better. She knew she should have kept out of his way. Avery was hungry and wanted something to eat. This was why she woke him up. Her dad was upset and still drunk from the whiskey.

            “Are you okay?” she heard a voice say behind her. Avery looked over to see Venice. The Asian girl walked over to Avery and started to stroke her back. Her touch was cold as usual. This girl wouldn’t leave Avery alone.

            “No…” Avery said, suppressing tears.

            “It’s okay. Everything is going to be okay,” Venice whispered.

            “How do you know? You aren’t even real.” Avery could feel the excruciating pain in her back. The fever came back. She had managed to make this girl angry once again.

            “I am real!” Venice screamed at the top of her lungs. Avery could feel Venice’s cold hands grasp her around the throat.

            “Please… Let go…” Avery managed to say. Venice continued to stifle her windpipe.

            “Say I am real! Say you will be my friend.”

            “Alright… I will be your friend.” Avery felt Venice’s grasp weaken.

Avery looked up to see Venice staring at her. She looked malevolent. She flashed Avery an evil smile.

            “Why do you want me to be your friend so bad Venice?

            “Why?” Avery asked.

“You are all I have. I don’t have anyone else to talk to,” Venice replied. She didn’t seem as malevolent now.

            “I am really all you have?” Avery asked.

            “Yes, I have no one else to talk to…” For the first time Venice looked vulnerable and harmless.

            “So, friends?” Venice asked extending her hand to Avery. She shook Venice’s cold hand and made her a promise to be friends forever.

            Avery woke up from the dream. It was a memory she had suppressed some time ago. She had forgotten all about their deal. Avery was beginning to wonder why Venice had stuck around all these years. If she was truly an imaginary friend, wouldn’t she have left years ago? Avery was beginning to think Venice was something else. Something more than just a figment of her imagination.

            “Hey there!” a voice interrupted her thoughts. Avery glanced up to see Venice. She was dressed in a provocative tight dark blue dress. It had lacy sleeves. The dress made every angle on her body pop. This time she materialized with heavy blue eye shadow. On her feet were suede blue booties.

            “Wow…” Venice smiled.

            “I know, don’t you love this dress and my hair.” Venice’ hair was curly and tied up in loose ponytail which she pulled forward.

            “You look great!” “Yes, I know.”

            “I have a question Venice.” Avery pushed her covers off and turned on the fan.

           “Go ahead and ask me.” Venice replied. She snapped her fingers and a long white cigarette appeared. She took a deep breath and inhaled the cigarette.

            “Why are you still here?” Venice did her best not to look startled.

            “I am here because I am part of you.”

            “What do you mean?” Avery asked. The room was starting to feel chilly. Avery started to feel the old Venice emerging again.

            “I am your sister.” Avery coughed.

            “What do you mean my sister?” Venice’s face began to dis- tort.

           “I mean your sister. We are twins.” Avery began getting a splitting headache.

            “Twins? Twins? What do you mean twins?” Her headache did not subside. In fact it grew worse. The room was a blur.. “Tell me Venice, tell me what you really are?”

            “I just told you. Accept it. You are part of me and I am part of you.” Avery started to feel dizzy.

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Author Mary Sage Nguyen

Mary Sage Nguyen

Mary Sage Nguyen is the youngest daughter of Vietnamese and Chinese immigrants. Vietnamese was the language spoken at home, so the only way she was able to learn English was through the public school system. Even though English was not spoken at home, Mary became an avid reader as a young child and always dreamed of being a writer someday.

Website / Blog / Facebook / Twitter / The Malevolent Twin on Facebook

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Yeah! It’s now my turn to share Madison’s Song with ya’ll!

Come on in and check out the stunning cover art.

Enjoy my review. I promise I won’t ramble much. LOL

Read the thrilling excerpt and check out the buy links to get your own copy.

And don’t forget to enter the giveaway!

Let’s go!

Madison’s Song

by Christine Amsden

Madisons Song

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My Review

I was so sad when I finished the Cassie Scot series.

Then I was so excited to get my hands on Madison’s Song. It’s a companion book to the series and features several characters I wanted to know more about.

Christine Amsden is a master at hooking you into the story from the first couple of sentences. The prologue captivated me right away. I pressed on, anxious to get to the whole story and excited to enter this world again.

I always thought Madison was stronger, more than she thought she was. Her power of song, her gift of evoking emotions through her singing, is a powerful gift. She is just discovering how handy it can be. Especially with werewolves slathering to eat her.

Her fear of werewolves is well founded. An encounter with Scott, the local pack leader, left her riddled with nightmares and dealing with lots of anxiety. To be around him terrifies her.

This is where she shows her toughness though. Her brother Clinton has vanished after calling and telling her he’s been bitten by a werewolf. The only one she knows might be able to help him is Scott.

Imagine Scott’s surprise when he opens the door and there stands Madison. He knows how she feels about him. He can’t blame her after what he put her through. That shes’ there at all stuns him.

Of course he’ll help her. He’s Clinton’s only chance at surviving the transformation and attacks from other packs. Plus it gives him time to be close to Madison. Maybe to change her fear of him to something else. Something more romantic.

But that’s a problem too as his best friend, Evan, a powerful wizard, is Madison’s half brother. His threats to rip Scott limb from limb if he so much as looks at Madison are not to be taken lightly.

I couldn’t wait for the road trip with Scott and Madison. These two are perfect for each other and I’ve been waiting a long time to see if or how they finally hook up.

Things get strange when they run across a rogue werewolf, Clara. She’s a werewolf but she wasn’t bitten. Using her to track down who took Clinton, they stumble onto something. It could be good for the werewolves, or it could be disastrous. I had a feeling it couldn’t be good so I read late into the night to find out.

I found out. I found out a lot of things by the end of the book.

I loved every bit of this and sure hope the author continues with more companion novels. I can think of many other characters who I’d enjoy getting to know better.

5 Stars

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Synopsis

Her voice is enchanting; his soul is black…

Madison Carter has been terrified of Scott Lee since the night he saved her from an evil sorcerer – then melted into a man-eating monster before her eyes. The werewolf is a slave to the moon, but Madison’s nightmares are not.

Despite her fears, when Madison’s brother, Clinton, is bitten by a werewolf, she knows there is only one man who can help. A man who frightens her all the more because even in her nightmares, he also thrills her.

Together for the first time since that terrible night, Scott and Madison drive to Clinton’s home only to discover that he’s vanished. Frantic now, Madison must overcome her fears and uncover hidden strengths if she hopes to save him. And she’s not the only one fighting inner demons. Scott’s are literal, and they have him convinced that he will never deserve the woman he loves.

*Stand-alone companion to the Cassie Scot series

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Check out this exciting excerpt!

“Silence,” David commanded.

Her throat continued to work, but no sound emerged. She felt like a fish being gutted, choking and spluttering as David returned to the work of cutting into the soft, sensitive flesh of her belly. Yet even as tears refilled her eyes and fear devoured her heart, some part of her recognized that her guts remained intact. Whatever David was doing to her with the dagger involved tracing shallow patterns across the surface of her skin.

Fight the pain. Take deep breaths. Ground and center. She was not in the empty living room of a house she had not quite moved into yet, she was at church, singing in the choir. Above her, Jesus hung from a cross, a crown of thorns atop his head, a soft glow surrounding him. She usually found the magic within that glow. She reached for it…

“Stop that!” David slapped her hard across the face.

Once again her eyes flew open. She saw the dagger dripping with blood – her blood. Had her feeble grab for magic actually made a difference? David seemed to have noticed something, but what?

“You’re just making this harder on yourself,” David said.

“What do you want?” Madison tried to ask. Her mouth moved, her lips forming the question, but no sound emerged.

She didn’t think he would answer; he couldn’t even have heard the question, but to her surprise he only hesitated a moment before saying, “Your soul.”

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Author Christine Amsden

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Christine Amsden has been writing fantasy and science fiction for as long as she can remember. She loves to write and it is her dream that others will be inspired by this love and by her stories. Speculative fiction is fun, magical, and imaginative but great speculative fiction is about real people defining themselves through extraordinary situations. Christine writes primarily about people and relationships, and it is in this way that she strives to make science fiction and fantasy meaningful for everyone.

At the age of 16, Christine was diagnosed with Stargardt’s Disease, a condition that affects the retina and causes a loss of central vision. She is now legally blind, but has not let this slow her down or get in the way of her dreams.

In addition to writing, Christine teaches workshops on writing at Savvy Authors. She also does some freelance editing work.

Christine currently lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, Austin, who has been her biggest fan and the key to her success. They have two beautiful children.

Website / Newsletter / Blog / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads / Google +

 

Purchase Links

Amazon / B&N

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I have another new cover reveal for Anthony Renfro.

Check out A Vampire At Christmas.

I had a blast with this one and you will too!

So, you ready?

Okay.

Here

You

Go!

Vampire at Christmas - High Resolution

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My Review

I reviewed this a while ago. Since then Anthony has done some revisions. A little more of this and a little more of that and it’s even better and I already gave it 5 Stars before.

The best thing is he gave his vampire a name.

Introducing Talan Gawayn. I love the name. Sounds like something from a long ago era. A proper vampire name.

Now here’s my review for the earlier edition.

The story opens in a tomb. All is calm. All is bright. The little Christmas tree in the corner casts a dazzling display reflecting off of the large coffin.

If you put your ear right up against the coffin, you might hear Jimmy Buffet singing Margaritaville. This handsome vampire loves being a vampire, loves Christmas, and is a fan of the southern artist and has been to many of his concerts. His powers enable him to fly to any location and blend into the shadows to enjoy the the shows.

He’s been waiting 364 days for this night and he grabs his bag of goodies and heads out. But first he must feed.

The beginning is different now. It opens with how Talan became a vampire and it’s a chilling scene.

When he was a new vampire he killed at random. But after many years and witnessing the miracle of Christmas, the warmth and cheer of it, he became more selective. Only killing those who deserved it.

I am amazed at the power of this character with the story being just over 20 pages.

He coldly stalks and consumes his prey, yet he’s also gleeful and excited, like a child. He really gets into the Christmas spirit and spreads hope and joy. Not to his prey, of course, but to those who are in need.

I live in the south and have seen Jimmy Buffet in concert. Been to his restaurant. Met him a few times.  While I was reading this story, I hummed Margaritaville and thought, this vampire would like it here.

5 Stars

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Excerpt

Talan Gawayn became a vampire in the 15th century on a cold, starry, full-moon night just after the first big snow of November. He was walking a less traveled path, on his way home from seeing his fiancé, whom he planned to marry the following spring, when three men stepped out of the shadows to rob him. He fought them at first, but they soon overpowered him, beat him ruthlessly, laughing as they did it, drunk and looking for someone to rob. They had found it in Talan who was so hopelessly in love he hadn’t seen them sneak up on him.

While he lay there in the snow dying from his injuries, one eye shut and swollen, the other able to see only a blurry vision, he thought he saw something, something moving quick and fast. The men who had beaten him were counting out their stolen money when this thing attacked them. It tore through their flesh, ripped out their throats savagely; and didn’t just drain the robbers of their precious blood, but this thing seemed to almost be bathing in it while it fed.

Talan tried to stay focused, tried to see what this thing was, but his will gave out and his good eye closed. He passed out into an injured slumber.

Weight.

Something heavy was straddling him . . .

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Synopsis

(Revised and Updated 2015)

 A short story about a Vampire who uses his riches and immortal skills to bring joy to those in need during the Christmas Season.

Reviews:

5 out of 5 stars: A deadly and dashing vampire.

Purchase Links

Amazon: US / UK / AU / CA

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Author Anthony Renfro

Anthony Renfro

Anthony Renfro lives in Apex, North Carolina. He is a reader, writer, runner, husband, father, and stay at home dad – one of the toughest jobs anyone could ever do. He was born in Bristol, Tennessee, and is a graduate of UNC-Greensboro.

You can find him at many spots on the web, but if you really need to find his center in the social media storm it would be at his blog, apoetryjourney.wordpress.com.

Now reach out, just beyond the light, right into that big black space, and let him take your hand on a journey into cold dark places. You will be scared, and you may even be terrified, but in the end you might just find you liked the ride.

Find him on:

Blog ~ Amazon ~ Goodreads

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Until the next time…..

Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew!